i'm giving you a nightcall


what i'm wearing:
topshop aztec bodycon dress (worn as top)
primark skater skirt
primark cardigan
primark shoes
primark belt
MK watch

primark overload or what? i think when it comes to basics, primark or H&M have hit the nail on the head. as it's all i'm currently dressed in at the moment i send my apologies for the repetitive garments that will probably be featured in my future posts. i'm still currently wearing my barry m lilac polish (seen in the past two posts) so i thought i would take advantage of it as it allows me to wear a plain black and white outfit. i'd totally forgot i owned this dress from summer; which seems to happen on a regular basis as i have a spending problem, so when i spotted it in my wardrobe i really wanted to wear it. however to make it weather appropriate (as the last time i wore it was in fourty degree weather) i'd chose to wear it tucked in a basic skater skirt. by doing this it allowed me to be comfortable and still look good. which makes me happy as i'm still on the mend from being ill so i don't want to look/ be dressed like a slob. i hope you like this post as i think it shows you don't need to own expensive clothing to dress nicely. primark has some great pieces in at the moment so check it out and save yourself some moolah. i've wrote this post before i need to start getting ready work so fingers crossed that i'm actually able to get through my shift this time instead of getting sent home. also if you look hard enough i think this is the first outfit post where you can see my dinky arm tattoo, have you spotted it?

i love lipstick queen


my first ever product sent to review was lipstick queen (you can read it here) and although i think you can see how much i've grown as a blogger since then, it's still a brand i am interested in and love. after being sent this not too long ago, after trying it i hopped onto the lookfantastic website and i'm now currently uhm-ing and ah-ing to buy a sinner opaque lipstick too! what striked me the most about the product was how amazing the packaging was. the colour really does make me feel like a lipstick queen. out of everything the extra detail on the inside makes all the difference to me. poppy king who designed this lipstick i think her logo is amazing. one of my favourite artists is rennie mackintosh and it just reminds me of his designs! i suppose to all of you though the most important thing i need to talk about is the lipstick, right? sorry for getting a little distracted in my own babbling. i think the consistency of the lipstick is perfect for the colder days as it's incredibly moisturising, so if you're having a flaky lip day which i seem to be having quite regularly at the moment you won't have to worry when wearing this. i know some people will say the price tag is a little high but for me i think the quality shines through. i bought hue from MAC after several great reviews in the past which i'd say is quite similar with this lipsticks finish, however it's the worst lipstick i could have ever bought. it highlighted all the imperfections in my lips when it's supposed to do the opposite and make them look better, and it had the worst staying power. the shade is perfect to just add a little tint to the natural colour of your lips, great for when you are creating a bold eye look. i've definitely been reaching for this regularly just because it's so great for everyday use and only requires maybe one top up. cannot recommend enough.

finally, i have some great news i'm going to the beauty bloggers meet up on the 7th of april in manchester! i'm so excited as i've already got my hotel booked so it's 100% on the cards for me. i can't wait to put names to faces so if you're going too please let me know. x

barry m gelly nail polishes


there's been a huge hype surrounding these products at the moment so i thought "screw it" i'm getting them. these were the two shades that stood out most for me at the time, but after using them i do want to pick up a few more shades. i'll be completely honest and say i don't understand what difference i'm supposed to see in my nails between these and a normal nail polish. even so i found application to be really easy with minimal mistakes. i really love the brightness of the colours, as it means they really do stand out and i've got asked a few times what i'm wearing on my nails. one thing barry m can be credited for is the lasting power of these polishes. i'm onto my fourth day wearing prickly pear and i only have two small chips that are barely noticeable, and that's only because i was picking at them. this is remarkable for me as more expensive polishes such as model own or esteè lauder literally come off after two days for me. i've always enjoyed buying from barry m as they're so affordable and the range of shades they sell is amazing, they probably so have every colour under the sun.

i know this is a pretty pathetic excuse of a review but i think the pictures speak for themselves. plus, there's only so much you can say about nail polishes without sounding like a robot.

springing into summer


what i'm wearing:
topshop lace crop top (old)
fdavenue pleated maxi skirt*
asos quilted leather jacket
barry m gelly polish in prickly pear
primark belt
MK watch

i know these pictures aren't the greatest especially with the overspill of fat c/o of my arms but i did the best i could in a sticky situation. i wanted to take these pictures outside and with my face but of course with my luck i got ill, had a huge breakout and then to top it off it decided to snow. typical. there's always next time though. :)

although not exactly weather appropriate for right now, i thought it would be nice to show something colourful for when it's a little warmer. when i was on holiday last year i lived in chiffon maxi skirts. the fabric is incredibly light allowing your body to breath, so you won't be sticking to your garments by the end of the night. perfect for days when the sun has his hat on. for me, i'm not a big 'colour wearer' but pastels are a great way to inject a bit of brightness into an outfit without going OTT and looking like a rainbow. my leather jacket is a staple wardrobe piece that i am not willing to leave behind once the winter months have passed. it also means the outfit doesn't look too dressy so it can be a perfect day-to-day outfit. dont worry by thinking items like this skirt can only be worn in warmer months though. another way i would like to wear it would be paired with a crisp white shirt and a pale grey jumper.

with the code CHARISSA20 you can get 20% off FDavenue purchases!

houston, we have a problem


products mentioned:
real techniques expert face brush
real techniques blush brush
real techniques powder brush
eco tools facial sponges (3 pack)
eco tools deluxe fan brush
nutribiotic cleanser for sensitive skin (473ml)
collection 2000 extreme felt tip liner
maybelline master shape brow pencil (soft brown)
collection 2000 lasting perfection concealer (01 fair)
barry m gelly hi-shine nail polish in greenberry
barry m gelly hi-shine nail polish in prickly pear

hi, i'm charissa and i'll admit to quite recently being a spendaholic. i think i have all of you fellow beauty bloggers to blame though, you always write such positive, reliable reviews so i just can't help but pick products up. so much for window shopping.

i have victoria from vipxo to credit for introducing me to iHerb, who i can't thank enough as it's saved me a whole lot of money. if you spend over $40 you receive $10 off your order, so including shipping all six products cost me a shocking low price of $43.18. if i were to buy all these products in the UK my guess would be that it would set me back extra £30-35. shipping took just under a couple of weeks which is expected when you order abroad. however, when delivered everything was in perfect condition so i couldn't be happier. i will definitely be purchasing from iHerb again. i don't have much to say about the products i picked up from superdrug (the bottom three pictures), i am planning on doing a separate post on the barry m polishes though. if there are any other products from this post you would like reviews on just let me know.

with my parcel i also received a unique code that gives first time buyers $10 off too (or $5 for orders under $40) which is extremely generous if you ask me. just use the code NHM478 at the checkout and start shopping for goodness sake!

p.s can you spot the wet sponge? haha, i totally couldn't wait to start using them before i photographed them.

let me kiss you


what i'm wearing:
zara chiffon skeleton print shirt
topshop high waisted joni jeans
RMK lip crayon in beige*
chipped nails (oops, sorry)
MK watch

ah, the return of the joni jeans. at first i wasn't so sure i made the right decision when buying them but now it seems i'm glued to them! obviously black jeans go with everything anyway but as they are high waisted it means instead of opting for skirts i can now tuck my shirts in and look casual and smart. if you've been following my blog from the beginning you'll know this is my favourite shirt. especially are this is the third time it's been featured in a blog post since november. i just think it looks far for expensive and high end than it actually was (£29.99 i think i paid). i don't really have anything interesting to talk about i just took these quickly before i was supposed to go to work yesterday. however as i've been feeling bad since wednesday night i had to call in sick because at the moment i'm in agony which made me feel bad as i hate letting work down. not to worry, i have a doctors appointment booked and my debit card at the ready to do online shopping so fingers crossed i'll be on the mend soon. also my skin currently isn't in the condition i like it to be when wearing bold lip colours, as a result of the cold weather so i've been opting for nudes or lip balms lately. i've really been enjoying using this RMK lip crayon just because it applies super quickly helping create definition to your lips while staying natural. it's perfect to just pop a balm on too to give your lips some extra tlc.

my iherb order came in the post today; a week earlier than i expected, where i managed to get so many things including three real technique brushes all for £28! if you check my instagram you can see what i got but i'll definitely be getting posts up about all the products i ordered soon. i'm thinking maybe doing a haul?

my experience with myvitamins


with regular breakouts despite a good skincare routine there can only be one reason, my diet. i usually switch from one extreme to the other, so i could be eating a super low calorie diet one week and then be extremely gluttonous the next. obviously my skin isn't my best friend because of this. even though i do try to drink as much water as i can a day when beka from lookfantastic asked if i'd like to try some supplements from myvitamins it couldn't be more perfect timing. keeping with the theme of the blog i was sent the ultimate beauty bundle. i was sent these over three weeks ago which has allowed me to make an appropriate judgement, and whether i really did see any physical improvements. what i liked about myvitamins supplements compared to those you can buy from the supermarket is that instead of tubs they are in resealable packets.

out of all four products, the acai berry capsules definitely gave me the biggest improvement. i had always known that acai berrys were a great antioxidant but had never tried them before now. my skin feels a lot more healthier and the overall look is better and brighter, giving me a natural glow. i also know that acai berry's can be beneficial when aiding weight loss (which i am not doing) but when i do want to start shedding excess weight i'm really interesting in trying the total carb blocker. i really do love carbs however i don't think the feeling is mutual. the acai berry and omega 3 were capsules that were easy to swallow with water however i did find the vitamin c and hair, skin and nails tablets a lot harder to take and use on a regular basis. they are to be taken with a meal but the taste of them was disgusting and they were too big to try and swallow, like the capsules. i do think i have seen an improvement in the condition of my nails and hair from using them though. my nails rarely snap anymore and i have less hair breakage when brushing. i think for the price they are definitely worth the money and i will repurchase the acai berry capsules when i have completed this set. 

OPI euro centrale collection


OPI polka.com (15ml) - £11.50*
OPI suzi's hungary again (15ml) - 11.50*

every girl needs a bit of glitter in there life don't they? i certainly have a love hate relationship with glitter polish, in that i love how it looks but i hate taking it off. of all the polishes that i own my trusty h&m stay golden is the only glitter polish that comes off normally without having to spend about ten minutes rubbing each nail. however luckily polka.com from the OPI euro centrale collection is the same thank goodness. OPI have recently released the euro centrale collection for spring 2013, which includes 12 nail polishes inspired by the history and modern design of the european region. the collection is a lot of fun and contains nearly every colour under the sun. i absolutely love polka.com which has a clear base loaded with electric blue, pink and violet small and medium sized flakes. as you can see both shades are lovely individually but luckily they go so well together. as soon as i received them i put them on together but by the time i managed to get round the photographing (4 days later may i add) they had started to chip and i had to change my polish. as i'm currently white as a sheet i think suzi's hungary again is a little too bright for me but i can't wait to wear it with either fake tan or when i have a natural tan in the summer. what do you think of the new opi collection, do you like it?

models own black magic with opi polka.com*

please check out my blog sale as everything has been reduced and must go!
*all funds are going towards a new camera*

i'm loving lord & berry


lord & berry lipstick pencil in tulip red - £8*
lord & berry ink glam liquid eyeliner - £9.50*

okay so i know i've gotten this post up quite late but i've been trying to motivate myself all day and subsequently left it to the last possible second. better later than never though, right? lord & berry are a brand i'd only briefly heard of before, but never actually used. my first impressions are that i think the packaging is so smart and simple, making it look more expensive and high end. i think beka from look fantastic must know me inside out because she sent me my three make up staple pieces. all three items individually are great, and how they look together is just the icing on the cake.

my biggest make up pet hate is 'spider lashes'. you will know what i mean but i can't stand clumpy overcoated lashes. what's natural or nice about it, really? some mascaras i've used in the past automatically make your lashes look clumpy so i'm so happy this is not the case with my lord and berry mascara. it's perfect for lengthening but still looking natural. my only complaint would be that i'd have preferred the lipstick to have been a matte finish, just as its my lipstick preference. this doesn't mean i won't be wearing it again. because its in pencil form its so much easier to apply. i'd say its a cheaper dupe for mac rebel. i absolutely love rebel as it was my first ever mac lipstick i bought, but always hesitate to apply it because i don't think i suit it. however, my sister was with me when i was doing this post and she reassured me that i look okay. overall, i really like these products and i'm now aware than you can buy waterproof eyeliners. am i the only one who didn't think they existed? it means my eyeliner stays on for so much longer than before. it's great!

p.s apologies for how dark my photos are, there's nothing i could do as its naturally dark at the moment. i tried my best on lighting them which is why my hair looks gingery.

bed of roses


what i'm wearing:
céline t-shirt via eBay
h&m red blazer (sale)
topshop high waisted joni jeans
topshop chain necklace
topshop loafers*
MK watch

two outfit posts in two days, am i feeling alright?! i'm joking but at least i've finally got round to photographing the one outfit i'd had planned to get posted since i bought this t-shirt 3 weeks ago! i will apologise though as i've been choosing the worst time of the day to photograph and for that the quality of my images has been compromised. at least i've got them up though, right? after seeing kavita from shewearsfashion post about this top i zoomed on eBay and purchased it. it took two weeks to come but it was so worth the wait. i'd had such a great image in my head that i was going to wear it with a red blazer and my leather skirt (which i did the first time if you look on my instagram) but low and behold, i didn't have a red blazer. so when just looking over in the adult h&m store i spotted this in the sale for £10 and there was only one left and in my size. it's clearly fate. with my staff discount i only paid £7.50 for it so even though sometimes i feel like an air hostess in it, it was worth it. earlier in the week i finally caved and bought the oh so hyped about joni jeans. at first i thought i loved them, but now i'm not so sure. i definitely got the right size for me but i think because i'm curvy in the hip department they are incredibly unflattering to my shape, despite getting them in black. finally i just popped on my loafers that have a slight red flickers in them to compliment the blazer and i was good to go. it's such a versatile top, it can be dressed up or down. it's without a shadow of a doubt my favourite purchase over the past couple of months.

p.s how cute are my roses? this is the second valentines liam has gotten them for me and they are finally starting to open and i love them. i couldn't help but show them off.

please check out my blog sale as everything has been reduced and must go!
*all funds are going towards a new camera*

keeping it casual


what i'm wearing:
zara leather look sleeveless tunic
levi's distressed high waisted shorts (similar via eBay)
primark khaki oversized cardigan
office edgy 2 buckle boots
topshop chain necklace
MK watch

you know where you have days where you simply just want to throw on some clothes on and get on with your day? this was one of those days. i had to be up at half five to start work at seven, but as i was going to be seen by others the last thing i want to do is look like a slob. so i tried my best to look presentable. i know this necklace is featured in almost every single outfit post i do, but i have learnt to love it. originally just an impulse buy as i was under pressure to pick an outfit before going somewhere i was a bit disappointed that i had to pay £20 for it. i've definitely got my moneys worth from it though haven't i? i really should buy some more jewellery though. this primark cardigan is absolutely one of my favourite pieces in my wardrobe, i love the colour. for £12 can you really moan? they have plenty of other colours too. i loved these shoes when i post about them at the end of december but because they were so painful to wear after half an hour they ended up being neglected. not anymore! i have decided i just have to fight through the pain because they are so gorgeous.

this hasn't got anything to do with my post but i have been really overwhelmed recently. don't get me wrong i absolutely love blogging. the response i get from my readers and companies is amazing but anyone who says blogging doesn't take a lot of dedication is wrong. i'm really struggling to juggle photographing and writing posts, responding to e-mails, my relationship, work and giving myself some chill time! it's crazy but by just giving myself one day off from blogging on valentines day put a complete spanner in the works. i think my main reason for this is because i'm so unorganised. the only calendar i use is the one in my phone for my shifts at work so i really need to get myself an organiser! any recommendations would be fab.

please check out my blog sale as everything has been reduced and must go!
*all funds are going towards a new camera*

product review - elemis fresh skin


elemis peachy perfect gentle face wash - £12* (buy here)
elemis dreamy sleep night-time moisturiser - £22* (buy here)

i know i'm not the ripest banana in the fruit basket (what a pathetic metaphor), but i am always looking to extend my knowledge on skincare products so i'm using the best possible products for me. obviously i was aware that certain skincare brands have products specifically aimed at mature skin but i didn't know that it was available for younger skin too! elemis have recently introduced freshskin, a new range of products especially designed for the needs of a younger skin. ten products are available between the prices of £8-£22, allowing young skin to receive the best possible care and keep it youthful for longer.

if you read my january glossybox post (here) you will know that one of the five products included was the elemis freshskin exfoliating face wash, which i was really excited to use. i've found it to be the best exfoliator for my skin and it has greatly improved its appearance. so when the lovely jennie from elemis e-mailed me asking if i'd like to try a couple of the products how could i possibly pass it up?! i can safely say hand on heart that i have thoroughly enjoyed using these products and seeing the improvements they have made to my skin. although i don't really like the smell of the face wash; as it doesn't smell of peaches in my opinion, i've found it to be extremely moisturising and i see no more redness or irritation after i've wiped my face. even though i would consider the night moisturiser to be more of a luxury purchase i do really like it. previously i was using my sample size REN revitalising night cream, but this has definitely replaced it. it's not thick, just the perfect consistency to put all over your face and neck before going to sleep and still feel like your skin can breathe. i feel like my skin looks so much brighter and smoother on a morning since using this. if you are in your teens or early twenties i cannot recommend this range enough.

if you aren't willing to splurge on full size products why don't you try the freshskin discovery kit? the fresh start discovery kit contains a mini peachy perfect gentle face wash 30ml, softly softly daily moisturiser 15ml, deep clean purifying face mask 3 x 7ml, skin glow exfoliating face wash 30ml and dreamy sleep night-time moisturiser 15ml for just £19.90. the freshskin range can be found in superdrug stores around the UK too.

although my caseapp winner has been named you can get 20% off your own personalised
iphone case with the code 'charissam' up until the 28 of february, don't miss out!

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