LIFESTYLE | OUR NEW HOME PART 1

I recently polled on Twitter whether anyone would be interested in seeing any posts around doing up our new house this year and the majority said yes, so I decided to create a little introduction post first about the actual house buying process. 

For buying our first home, we had a bit of an unlucky patch where it took us 6 months to even find a house we wanted to put an offer in for. Then, we were stuck in a very complicated purchasing situation which meant we had to wait 5 months for the house to complete and get the keys - so if you spoke to me about anything house related in that time I was probably very grumpy!


Our cute lil home

The house buying process seemed pretty complicated, but our mortgage advisor and solicitors really helped dumb down the process - including what we'd be expected to do and how much each service would cost us. We bought the house using Help to Buy ISAs which I know is closing down soon, but it's being replaced by another similar service and if you haven't got one yet, I'd really recommend it - I mean, who wouldn't want extra money to help you buy your first home?

We decided to purchase an older house, based on what criteria we were looking for. I would definitely recommend creating some 'must have', 'nice to have', 'willing to compromise' lists when purchasing a house. But also, I can't recommend booking a visit ASAP as well. We found a lot of the nice houses were selling incredibly fast and you should really book a viewing as early as possible to avoid missing out. 

By buying an older house, we knew we were going to have to do some work on the house, so it's a bit of a fixer-upper which is why I'm going to try and document as much of it as I can on my blog. 

Here are some photos of the house as it originally looks:



Open plan living room & dining room


 

Kitchen & Utility


Master Bedroom


Bedroom 2


Bedroom 3


Bedroom 4


Bathroom

Garden

So far we've had the keys nearly two months and we've made quite a bit of progress; we've had all our plumbing redone and upgraded to a combi boiler, along with full electrical rewire, which means every wall has holes in it.

The next post will be all around the master bedroom as this is the room we've decided to start doing up first so stay tuned for the next part!


Here are a couple of tips when looking to buy your first house:

- Make sure you have some additional savings from your deposit so you have spare cash to start getting things done in your house once you own it

- Be open-minded when going to view a house and see if you can picture where your things would go

- Location of the house is very important, so do your research!

- Help to Buy ISAs are your best friends.



REVIEW | CATRICE COSMETICS PRODUCTS

I really haven't placed any American makeup hauls in a while, because all my money has gone on trying to play 'adults'. Annoying, Ulta won't let you order from the UK, so it was pretty difficult to get my hands on the Catrice products, but a lovely lady from the Netherlands offered to purchase them and send them over to me. So I decided to pick up the most raved about products to give them a try.

Review | Catrice Cosmetics Products | The Beauty is a Beast

I picked up the Liquid Camouflage Concealer, the Prime and Fine Dewy Glow Fixing Spray and the Prime and Fine Smoothing Refiner. These mainly came from recommendations from various YouTubers.

Review | Catrice Cosmetics Products | The Beauty is a Beast

I really wish I had managed to pick up more products because all of these were winners and I just want to explore more of the brand, even then it's tricky to get hold of.
I found the Liquid Camouflage Concealer blended into most foundations effortlessly, offered nice coverage and barely creased on me. The only downside to the concealer is that it has a strange smell, so if you're pretty sensitive to smells, you may not like this product. Personally, I'm willing to put up the smell for how affordable the products are!

In my collection, I have a lot of setting sprays, so I didn't really know if I should be expecting much from this one. It was fairly new out when I ordered it, so I hadn't heard anyone talking about it, but I totally can back up what all the Beauty YouTubers are saying about this setting spray. Not only does it help extend the longevity of your makeup, but it gives the skin a nice glow, without looking wet and is perfect when your makeup is looking a little too matte. A few people have compared it to the Cover FX Dewy Finish Setting Spray - but I don't have this product to compare it too, but it is a fraction of the price so there's no harm in trying it out.

Lastly, hands down a holy grail product for us big pore'd gals. I had been dying to try the Tarte Timeless Smoothing Primer after Tati was raving about how well it covered up her pores before the makeup application. However, I really couldn't bring myself to pay that much for a primer. I think Tati then released a video with more affordable products she loved, and she compared this Catrice primer as a dupe for the Tarte Primer, it was definitely something I needed to try.

I couldn't even imagine my makeup routine without this pore filler now. It's so affordable and its perfect for creating a flawless base when I'm doing a more evening appropriate make-up look.  I've tried quite a few pore filling primers in the past, from the likes of L'Oreal to NYX - but I found they all seemed to 'ball' up and when I applied my foundation and it all moved around. 
I'm not sure if it's because the primer isn't in a squirty tube, and is a more consistent formula I found it doesn't budge when applying any other products over the top of it.

Have you tried any of the Catrice products? What do I need to try next?



EBAY FINDS | #7 - AUTUMN/FALL EDITION

I'm back with another eBay finds post, this time all focused around autumn/fall. After the amazing summer weather we had in the UK this year, it's started to get colder now and it's definitely feeling like autumn more and more each day. 
Now I'm 100% more of a spring/summer child than an autumn/winter one, but I do love the cosiness, blankets, hot chocolates and jumpers that come with Autumn and this is the sort of stuff I've been pining over on eBay recently. However, with a little twist I've decided to add some clothes to the post (but just be careful and make sure you read reviews as I've not actually ordered any clothes from eBay before but I know quite a few people who have!)

CALENDAR | OCTOBER 2018 BEAUTY RELEASES

I know this post is going up a little later than expected but I definitely was not organized enough to get it sorted ready for the 1st (my bad!). It's starting to get into my favourite time of the year where there's a load of releases in time for Christmas and there are loads of good beauty bundles that you can pick up for yourself (*as gifts*).


October 1st

Pur: The Grinch Collection
Pur Cosmetics: The Grinch Collection | October 2018 Beauty Releases | The Beauty is a Beast
The Grinch has to be my favourite Christmas movie of all time, so I was so excited to read about this collection. Pur is also a brand I haven't really explored much of yet, I've only tried a couple of mascara, but I think this is a collection I'm going to pass on, although the brush set of this collection does look pretty cute!

Becca Volcano Collection
Image result for becca volcano collection
Becca isn't really a brand that I've tested much of, but I must admit even as a fellow warm-toned lover, it's nice to see a palette which isn't the same as every other release at the minute. Becca's highlights always have an amazing reputation as well so if you haven't tried one yet, this might be the collection to make you splurge!

October 2nd

Jouer: Liquid Concealers
Image result for jouer liquid concealers
I absolutely love a high coverage concealer, but it's definitely not a product I like to spend a lot of money on. I've been obsessed with my Nabla concealer recently so I will have to wait until I hear some reviews to decide it's it worth to replace my current high-end concealer.

Natasha Denona: Gold Palette
Image result for natasha denona gold palette
I was lucky enough to receive the Natasha Denona Sunset Palette as a Christmas present last year and I love it so much. However, this palette gives the feel like a lot of crossover and there isn't a huge variety in the shades in the palette so for this price, I'll be passing on this.

Persona: Colour Theory Eye Kits
Image result for persona colour theory eye kits
This isn't a brand I'm familiar with, but after looking into this collection, this is a launch that I'm pretty excited for! The pigmentation of the shadow looks amazing, and I think it's such a clever idea, especially for makeup newbies.

October 3rd

Hourglass: Ambient Edit Palette
Image result for hourglass ambient lighting palette 2018
Although I like the look of the Hourglass powders, this isn't a release I'm overly excited for. It does look like you get a full set of face powders in the palette which is perfect for traveling. Are the Hourglass powders worth investing in?

Drunk Elephant: Releases on Space NK
Image result for drunk elephant space nk
Now, this is a not a new product launch but I thought I'd throw it in here because in the UK it's not easy to get your hands on the brand but I believe it's going to be launching on Space NK and Cult Beauty and I literally can't wait. This is a brand I really want to try out and invest in because I want to focus more on my skin.

October 8th

Huda Beauty: Overachiever Concealer
Image result for huda beauty concealer
If you've been watching Huda Boss, then you will be up to date with the rollercoaster journey for making this concealer. I'm pretty sure the concealer is going to be amazing although I'm not too sure how I feel about the applicator. I can't wait to hear some more reviews about this. I believe this has been available in the UK for a little while but is launching in Sephora this month.

October 17th

BH Cosmetics: Royal Affair Palette
Image result for bh cosmetics royal affair palette
I'm constantly adding BH Cosmetic products to my beauty bay wishlist, but I'm yet to actually make a purchase. Their 'Take Me To Brazil' palette launched like a storm but this is a lot more neutral palette. There's nothing in this palette that makes me feel like it's a must-have, but it's definitely a brand on my list to test.

Which launches are you looking forward to this October?



*I do not own the rights to any of the photos in this post.




DUPES | CHANEL SOLEIL TAN DE CHANEL BRONZER £9 DUPE

I swear all YouTubers rave about the Chanel Soleil Tan De Chanel Bronzer, and I'm literally a sucker for stuff like this, I swear 90% of my collection consists of products recommended by YouTubers. However, there was just no way I could justify £40 for a cream bronzer, so when I watched Hannah Renee's video testing B. Makeup, she tested the Cassie Lomas whipped bronzer and suggested it might be a dupe for the more famously known Chanel.

Now, I wasn't one to use cream products to contour or highlight, but I had recently just picked up the Jordana Sculpt N Go Creamy Contour stick and I fell in love. I was using it on a daily basis and so I decided to go ahead and pick up the B. Whipped Bronzer, especially since it was only £8.99!


CHANEL SOLEIL TAN DE CHANEL BRONZER £9 DUPE | The Beauty is a Beast

Since I don't own the Chanel Soleil Tan De Chanel cream bronzer, I can't really compare the two products but I definitely would recommend the B. Whipped Bronzer as a cheaper alternative if you fancy giving cream products a go. Looking at pictures alone, the textures of the two products do look completely different, but the finish looks pretty similar.

I actually found the whipped bronzer nice and easy to apply, without requiring a lot of skill or effort - this was such a big selling point since I have only just started trying my hand with cream products. 


CHANEL SOLEIL TAN DE CHANEL BRONZER £9 DUPE | The Beauty is a Beast

I found that a duo fibre brush provides a lovely application, although I know a lot of people prefer to use a beauty sponge. The bronzer is pretty pigmented and a little goes a long way so this is just something to be wary of when you start. It's better to build it up instead of trying to tone it down. Plus this means that it's going to last you quite a long time which always feels so much better to know when you're buying a new makeup item. 

I must have tried it with at least 5+ different foundations now, and I've never noticed any issue with it clinging to the foundation, removing coverage or anything like that! I also like to top it up with a shimmer powder bronzer, and even applying a powder on top of it, is so effortless. There's no skipping or patchiness at all. 

CHANEL SOLEIL TAN DE CHANEL BRONZER £9 DUPE | The Beauty is a Beast
The whipped bronzer does only seem to come in one shade, which means that it could be a waste of money for those with a very fair, or a deep complexion. The shade is slightly on the warmer side, so definitely more suited as a bronzer as opposed to a contour shade.

This product has been a firm favourite of mine since adding it to my collection and it's really made me want to go out and explore more cream bronzer and contour products, so if you have any recommendations I'd love to hear them!

Have you tried the B. Cassie Lomas Whipped Bronzer?