Monthly Round Up – July

Style

I’ve mostly been wearing this combo or these pants with the-dye tops. I’m all about clashing prints this summer.

I bought these adorable and very unique Freda Kahlo earrings by Wilderness from Sour Cherry, who are located in Afflecks and they also have an online shop.

I’ve been wearing this outfit (shrug, maxi dress, black gladiator sandals) the few times we’ve been out and about.

I posted about Items of Clothing That Seem Ideal in Theory but…

Hated my heavy, long fringe in the heat so gave myself a short choppy one instead.

Food

After reading that Pizza Express will be slowly closing branches permanently from September my Bloke used up his Tesco points and treated us to a meal. We thought it crap that the rocket didn’t come with the mozzarella and tomato so we ordered that as well. We also ordered three 14″ pizzas which were amazing. A spicy, smokey one with aubergine, peppers and humus (added after cooking); a slightly sweet one with sultanas, black olives and red onion and a cheesy one with garlic.

I tried Aldi’s No Steak Bake which had the loveliest flakey pastry and a mince sauce that was so rich it would have suited a Spag Bol better!

Did a comprehensive Cupboard and Fridge Shop at Ocado (didn’t realise they have Follow Your Heart Cheese unfortunately). It’s all gluten and dairy free apart from the pepperoni which has milk in the flavouring.

We visited V Revolution. I had this cheese burger with bacon, slaw and onion rings. My bloke had the burger between two doughnuts which he said was very tasty and not as weird as you’d think. Okay…!?

I’ve started putting chilli (fresh, or oil, or sauce), spring onion and crushed roasted peanuts on everything. So refreshing for summer!

Skincare and Makeup

If I Could Only Use One Skincare Product this is what I chose and explained why.

I blogged about my Lifestyle Tips for Maintaining Healthy Skin.

Unpopular Opinions – Makeup Tag was surprisingly fun to join in with. Spotted on Just Geeking By.

Lifestyle

I posted 20 Tips for Living a Greener, More Sustainable Lifestyle

Another tag which I find by the lovely Heather over at Just Geeking By was The 90’s Tag I was a teen in the 90’s so this was so much fun!

The last tag I joined in with was The Daily Gratitude Tag – Home Sweet Home

TV

Limitless – a spin off from the film staring Bradley Cooper. A guy who’s on pills which expand his mind consults for the FBI. Light and entertaining.

Preacher – About a preacher, a con-woman and a vampire ft. God and a murderous Saint. Totally nuts!

Films

The Avengers films – Never get bored of these.

Captain America – Kinda boring.

Mortal Engines – Film Set in the future most cities will have morphed into huge machines which move around and swallow smaller cities to survive but not all cities are as ruthless as this. Two young people fight to find justice and fairness. Based on the Mortal Engines Quartet books by Philip Reeve.

Super 8 – A film incredibly similar to Stranger Things before that series was created.

Youtube

Brad Mondo – Very honest, funny, sweet hairdresser who reacts to people doing their own hair and also does tutorials.

Music

Kate Bush album Hounds of Love; Fun Loving Criminals album Scooby Snacks; Lady Ice (fellow Mancunian) single No Silence; Nadia Rose single Skwod.

If there’s anything you want to ask me or to tell me, please leave a comment, I love reading them and replying to you!

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

20 Tips for Living a Greener, More Sustainable Lifestyle

TIPS ON LIVING A GREEN LIFESTYLE

  1. Recycle/Upcycle
  2. Reuse/Repair
  3. Buy organic
  4. Reduce plastic consumption (use wooden/fabric/glass/metal alternatives)
  5. Avoid single use plastic
  6. Support independent companies
  7. Buy local produce
  8. Campaign/fund raise for wildlife and nature
  9. Drive an electric car or cycle or use public transport
  10. Use cruelty free and natural skincare, selfcare and household products
  11. Buy from and donate to charity shops
  12. Sell quality items on Depop and donate the money to smaller charities
  13. Use fabric tote bags for shopping
  14. Grow your own veg (growing a little tomato or chilli plant or regrowing veg ends like lettuce on your windowsill counts)
  15. Avoid fast fashion as much as possible
  16. Get clothes altered and learn how to hem and use darts to alter size/shape (fairly easy but makes a huge difference).
  17. Buy your electricity and gas from Good Energy/Ecotricity
  18. Use the phone provider Eco Talk
  19. Turn off the light when you leave the room
  20. Wear another layer, rather than turning up the heating

Just do your best and don’t stress!

πŸ’šβœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ’š

Unpopular Opinions Makeup Tag

My lovely friend Heather from Just Geeking By tagged me in this a while ago but because my iPad has decided to put the keypad right in the middle of the screen so I can’t see what I’m typing!? So I have to use my laptop for blogging, (which I keep at home) on days I don’t have brain fog.

Popular Makeup Product You Don’t Like

Brow kits. Unlike Heather, I have found shades which work for me (usually more ashy tones, oddly) but the wax just isn’t strong enough. My brows grow along and downward. I had to brush them through with hairspray on a spooly to stop them looking like Hagrid’s! I’m so glad I wear glasses now which cover them, and eye bags too.

Popular Makeup Product/Brand That Everyone Else Seems To Hate But You Love

The Body Shop. I’ve used their products since I was 12 in the 90’s and still rely on the Lipbalm from their Hemp range, everyday. I didn’t buy from the brand during the time they were owned by L’Oreal.

Yes, it can be annoying having their reps creep into your DM’s but I don’t consider them to be one of the aggressive and greedy MLM’s that screw over their reps (which is bigger concern for me).

I’m staying out of the whole JK Rowling debacle on both sides.

Makeup Collab You Didn’t Like or Weren’t Interested In

I have to agree with Heather on this one, I’m not that interested in who has designed the product as long as what it does, works for me. I really like Soph from Soph Does Life but I didn’t rush to buy her makeup because I have far too much makeup already.

Popular Makeup Step That You Never Do

Primer as it clogs my pores terribly. Stupidly I don’t use eyeshadow primer either, even though I have very oily lids, then wonder why my perfectly blended makeup looks muddy after half an hour. Yup, I need to buy some!

Popular Beauty Influencer You Don’t Subscribe To/Watch

People like James Charles as I think their unnatural look and the amount of layers they use is more along the drag side of makeup. I prefer to still look like myself, even with a full face of makeup on. No shade thrown to anyone.

Popular Makeup Product/Brand That You Dont Use/Support Anymore

Max Factor, L’Oreal because they STILL disgustingly test on animals (and sell in China). They also buy up cruelty free brands (simply to get the competition off the market), with no intention of becoming cf companies themselves but they still profit from well-intentioned shoppers who don’t want to support cruel companies.

Makeup Trend That You Have No Interest In Trying

Cut-creases. I know they are more of a wildly used technique than a trend these days. My skin is so soft (because of Hypermobilty Syndrome) and I have such little space between my eyes and brows that’s it’s almost impossible, unless I used a dark, narrow, almost graphic line. I tend to graduate colour sideways along my eyes and then go upward at the edges.

Makeup Product That Worked Better In Theory. Either Swatched Better or Worked Better On Others Than You

All over illuminator under/over foundation, specifically Charlotte Tilbury, Hollywood Flawless Filter. It showed up ALL of my flaws! If you already have very even, smooth skin with tiny pores then it will make you look even better. If you are like me, it will throw the textures and different depths on the surface of your skin into stark contrast with each other, oh and settle into your pores too. Gold pores – awesome.

So let me know what you think of this post and if you want to join in then please do!

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Black Owned Brands & Bands inc. Rock, Hip-hop, Alternative Apparel & Cruelty-free beauty

πŸ–€ Black Rock/Metal Playlist by Nova Twins

πŸ–€ I personally recommend the whole back-catalogue of Skunk Anansie

πŸ–€ 2020 – 2021 Black Rap and Hiphop Playlist by Red Music

πŸ–€ General Black Owned Business Directory

πŸ–€ Cruelty-free, Vegan Beauty and Lifestyle List by Vegan Beauty

πŸ–€ Cruelty-free Beauty and Lifestyle List by Logical Harmony

πŸ–€ Hair and wellness family owned brand. Cruelty-free and vegan,

πŸ–€ Alternative Style and Makeup

  • Glam Goth Beauty
  • We Are Unapologetic
  • Gothic Lamb
  • Coloured Raine Cosmetics
  • Jada Le Bour
  • Pocky’s Shoppe
  • Hooked On Ariel
  • Via Shea
  • A Whole New Witch
  • 6t9
  • Candles With Purpose

πŸ–€ Kawaii and Alternative Styles

(compiled by @foxxtailz on Instagram)

  • Otaq Apparel
  • Polka dot Cute Shop
  • Magical Boys Club
  • Dragon Dandy
  • Teal Teacup
  • Moshi Melon
  • Plushii Kawaii
  • Hard Decora
  • I Puke Kawaii

(compiled by @yasminesumman on Instagram)

  • That’s So Kitschy
  • Default Club
  • Charmin Darlin
  • Hissyfit Clothing
  • Maurio Kart (death metal shirts especially)
  • House Of Bats

Happy shopping and listening!

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Your Fave LIFESTYLE Photo’s from the Last 6 Months

I post a selection of photo’s from this blog onto my Instagram and share a few general images everyday. Come follow me if you don’t already @vamp_it_up_mcr

I’ve gone through which photos got the most likes (on Insta) and divided them up into four categories, Lifestyle, Style, Food and er, Me!

Lifestyle

(Clockwise)

Gap Between Buildings When you walk down Whitworth Street heading to Oxford Road, you cross over a tiny bridge without realising and that’s the view of the canal and swanky apartments to your left.

Baby Jay I’ve only ever seen a Jay twice before so this little’un sitting right outside the window was lovely surprise.

Sorting my makeup and storage I chucked out anything old or crap and arranged everything here into one bag and base coverage and tools/brushes into a wicker basic. I indulged my left over OCD traits and lined up everything colourful for this photo; so satisfying!

Pins I have so many pins I have to rotate them on bags and coats. I need to make space on my pin board to display them all properly.

Skincare Routine After setting myself he challenge to get healthier skin in one month, I narrowed down my products to these and found a consistent routine and it worked!

Street Art This is a very old photo of the side of a block at the start of The Northern Quarter. The beautiful art (subject now replaces by Mcr bees) is by Faunagraphic who’s responsible for all of the nature inspired, pastel or brushstroke effect street-art in town. Check out that pretty fire-escape too.

Narwhals Narwhals Swimming In The Ocean (the pre-curser to the baby shark song) My Bloke got me these slippers last Xmas.

Bench In Our Tiny Backyard All my Dads work. I offer to help with our yard but he always refuses as he loves doing it so much. He’s like me, if he gets an idea in his mind, he knows exactly how he wants it. I’m not arguing as it comes out looking lovely every time ^_^

(Centre)

Sustainable (what used to be referred to as Eco) Purchases I got everything here from an online shop called Ecologue. Metal flask, really light but efficient; Bamboo toothbrush, the most comfortable one I’ve ever used and biodegradable; Cleansing pads, also made from bamboo and machine washable!

As always I’d love to hear your thoughts…

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Spring Cleaning My Makeup & Storage

Before doing this I did have a great makeup bag but my makeup was just randomly squashed into it, the kind of squashed where you open it and it all falls out.

I had no idea just how much makeup I actually had and what it was. Loads of eye makeup, yet no mascara!?

Keeping

Below is everything I’ve saved and wow, there are some gorgeous colours in there that I’d totally forgotten about.

Chucking

Below is everything I’ve chucked as it was either too old, too messy or the formulation never worked for me.

Storing

I wiped down my bag inside and out and moved the zip pocket from the middle, over to one side. Now it holds up my pallets and contains my eye and lip liners. I put my lippies in the gathered pockets and my eyeshadows and lipgloss in the main compartment. Now I can finally see everything!

I’ve decided I have enough makeup (eyeshadow & liners basically) to wear the ‘fancy’ stuff every time I go out, anywhere. Lots of cheerful colour – yay!

Any suggestions for a cruelty free mascara?

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Limited Edition Barry M Wildlife Eyeshadow Pallets

Barry M have collaborated with the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation and artist Emily Lamb to create three limited edition, vegan Wildlife pallets (Β£7.99). The special thing is that 20% of the net profits go straight to the specific animal on the pallet you have chosen. The tiger pallet has neutral and very warm tones but I’ve always loved pangolins and rhinos so I chose those two. They happen to really compliment each other too.

The Pallets

The Pangolin is the brightest little pallet that I’ve ever seen!

The Rhino is much more neutral but shimmery.

The Pallets

These prove that pallets made out of cardboard can still be sturdy and durable. I love how light and transportable these are and the small but functional mirror is a great touch.

The shadows

The immediate colour pay off isn’t quite as much as I was expecting from such velvety soft shadows and vibrant colours but to be fair, they are very solidly pressed in the pan. They do glide on and are very easy to build to get the depth of colour you want.

The pigment doesn’t shift easily so they aren’t the easiest shadows to blend but because I have oily eyelids and hooded eyes I prefer that they stick around.

The matts have great depth and even the neutral tones show up against my warm skin tone. The shimmers are beautiful with ‘Powerful’ in the Rhino pallet being an actual pan of glitter!

Applications

Ideally I would use the shimmers for my lid, inner corners and under the highest part of my brow. I’ll use the matts in a rounded shape above my lid and outer corners. It would look stunning with just two colours applied all around the eye, like teal and bronze or purple and pink, which is what I’ll do most often.

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Monthly Life Update – February

I’ve broken my record for often being ten minutes late by being ten days late as I thought I’d already posted this. Here’s everything I’ve been doing and reviewing!

Sorry I’m a bit grainy. Manchester doesn’t get much daylight in February.

Lifestyle

I created a list post called Self Imposed Ban on Buying and wrote down everything I have a lot of, the reason why I have a lot of it and why I shouldn’t buy any more of it. It’s a lot easier to realise what’s going on and to harden your resolve when you can see it in black and white.

I reposted Spring Cleaning My Beauty Cupboard from last year because I’ve done so well with keeping it ordered and thinking thoroughly about my purchases, that I’ve not needed to do it again this year.

Food and Dinning Out

Me and the Bloke have decided we are going to take it in turns to choose where we want to eat out for the evening (and who pays), at least once a month. The bloke chose Sai Spice an Indian place in Chorlton.

We ordered the veggie starter platter to share and four smaller curries. One spinach and dumpling based, one chickpea dahl, a nutty yoghurt based one and a spicy but not too hot Kolhapuri. Everything tasted amazing! It’s a brightly lit, affordable, family style place and I think Lilly’s would have some competition if they were closer to each other. Couldn’t resist grabbing a kulfi to go.

Here’s my review of Vertigo, the plant based restaurant at First Street, Manchester, which was my choice. I’d been wanting to go for a while but waited until I heard some good reviews as I’m not exactly rolling in cash.

I bought some ‘facon’ in the form of Coconut Bacon by Pimp my Salad, which I’m throwing on pretty much everything or just eating straight from the jar.

We made English Gluten Free Pancakes for pancake day or Shrove Tuesday as they call it.

I sampled one of Clive’s Tarts which I realised tasted lovely chilled or heated up. I was surprised it was both dairy and gluten free.

I’ve finally discover how wonderful Tika is! Tika panner, Tika broccoli (Yeah, I wasn’t expecting to come across that one either) and tika mock chicken. I reviewed two very different Tika Masala Veggie Readymeals, one from Tesco and one from Asda.

Skincare and Makeup

On my never ending quest to find a base that makes me look all glowy and healthy, rather than matte and a bit sallow, I bought Pixi Beauty Balm. Did it do the trick? You’ll have to click!

I’m trying to reduce my carbon footprint bit by bit, so I was pleased to find Zao essence of nature, a natural beauty brand that uses refillable bamboo packaging. I bought the essentials: Concealer and Mascara.

Thank you lovely people, for catching up with me.

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

Spring Cleaning my Beauty Cupboard

*First posted 1 year ago*

I’ve decided to do something positive and have a product Spring clean. Sorting through your skincare and makeup stash was one of my tips in my post 6 Simple Beauty Tips Which Make a Big Difference what a good day to follow my own advice, ha!

IMG_5810

This was all of the skincare products I owned and as you can see they are pretty much all over the place, with face, body and hair, old stuff and new stuff all mixed up. After going through everything this is what I learned…

  1. I had so much oil! I could easily just use the same one for my hair and body and a lighter one for my face.
  2. Out of all of those products I only had one face moisturiser.
  3. I found products that had changed consistency or were nearly empty and all of those were expired.
  4. I still had tanning oil from my twenties! o_O
  5. I buy face masks because they are on offer in pound shops and NEVER use them.
  6. I thought I needed to stock up on miceller water and cooling eye gel as I was running low but then realised I’d originally bought them in two’s to save on postage.
  7. I had a stupid amount of body butter.
  8. I’ve rediscovered cruelty free beauty brands I’d totally forgotten about!
  9. I had bits and bobs from various razors and waxing kits that I stopped using ages ago.

I’ve reduced the above to a single crate and the cute wicker basket. The rest is either in the recycling, the bin or my dressing table so I actually remember to use it daily.

___________________________

Here is all of my makeup, apart from what I’ve thrown out and repeats of the same thing and yeah, it’s still a lot!

IMG_5695

Here’s what I’ve thrown out.

IMG_5697

A slightly smaller pile, heehee.

IMG_5732

Here’s my main big-ass makeup case, my daily makeup case and my travel/wash bag with miniatures and samples in. Here’s what I’ve learned…

  1. Even though I treat my makeup fairly well, there were still spillages and products that felt sticky – eeew.
  2. If it’s really broken, through the damn thing away! You are not Stig Of The Dump or a Womble.
  3. If it doesn’t suit your skin tone or texture and it can’t easily be mixed with something else, then throw it away or swap it/give it to someone.
  4. There are lots of reasons why buying two of the same thing can be a good idea but hoarding the same type of product, or buying several before you’ve even tried if the product works for you is not a good idea.
  5. How many golden-brown eyeshadows and copper-brown toned lip products can one person reasonably own!? Five eyeshadows and eight lip products it would seem ;0)
  6. I still have products I bought before I went totally cruelty free. That was TEN years ago!

As you can see, I still have the big makeup bag but now my little ‘everyday makeup bag’ includes the best of my base, mascara, tools, contouring kit (I missed out the wonderful Pixi contour kit in the first photo) and three eyeshadows and eyelinners that I rotate on a monthly basis. This means that everything is easy to keep track of/clean/sharpened, quickly to hand, and I don’t forget to use all of the lovely colours I own.

I hope this helps with your declutter! Let me know if it has or if you also do some of the bad habits I’ve mentioned.

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€

 

 

 

 

Pixi by Petra Beauty Balm & H2O Skindrink Mini

About eight years ago I tried a lot of the BB and CC creams that came onto the market, with varying success. Then I got rather obsessed with finding the right radiance boosting foundation, with absolutely no success. So I thought I’d give Pixi Beauty Balm (High Coverage Foundation) Β£22 in Nude a try, as it looked like it might combine both.

Active Ingredients

  • Adenosine restores & smoothes
  • Ceramide NP provides time-release moisture
  • Chamomile calms & soothes
  • Hyalorunic Acid

Before I applied this I looked so fatigued and I’d not been taking care of my skin for several days (as a result of illness, my diet and my lifestyle choices) so it looked dull, greasy and blotchy with big grooves at the side of my eye bags.

Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner!

The first time I applied the Beauty Balm to unprimed skin it glided on so easily, matching my skin tone perfectly (darker than nude in my opinion) and it made my skin look flawless!

The second time I applied the H2O Skindrink and OMG did I look glowy and healthy!

It wore really well and evenly and my skin felt hydrated through the entire day.

After using this duo I now realise there is skincare and makeup and then there’s CAMOUFLAGE and MAGIC!

Disclaimer: No way in hell am I showing you the ‘before’ photo (recall the worst mug shot you ever saw and you’re nearly there). I couldn’t get an ‘after’ shot either as there’s hardly any natural light in my house in the afternoons. I tried using my very bright SAD light but that just bleached out my features (and any contrast) like those awful ‘youth boosting’ skincare adverts that are so prevalent now.

Anyway, below is an approximation…

Before

After

Seriously though….

Rating 5/5 πŸ’ƒπŸ½πŸ’ƒπŸ½πŸ’ƒπŸ½πŸ’ƒπŸ½πŸ’ƒπŸ½

I am gutted that I can’t buy a full sized Skindrink H2O because – and I rarely say this – I need this in my life…and on my face.

πŸ–€βœ¨Chrissieβœ¨πŸ–€