Nicky Clarke Hair Therapy Straighteners | Review

Hello again,

I decided to use a Boots gift voucher I got for Christmas to buy myself some new hair straighteners. I didn’t want to get expensive ones because I do already have really good ones. Conveniently, these Nicky Clarke ones were reduced from £39.99 to £19.99 in Boots’ post-Christmas sale.

I’m really glad I found some for that price because I can now justify having straighteners in Cornwall and in London. I got these ones because they’re small and compact so they won’t take up much room in my suitcase for Budapest and won’t break my luggage weight limit.

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For the price, I’m so impressed with how well they work!

They heat up really quickly when you turn them on and also cool down quickly when you’ve turned them off. This is so useful if you’re in a rush to go out and you need to take them with you. It took mine about 15 minutes to cool down completely after I switched them off.

The heat setting comes in the form of a dial, where you can choose fine, medium, high and max. Fine to medium heat is for shorter or thinner hair and high to maximum heat is for longer or thicker hair. I used medium for mine and it was definitely hot enough – my hair is thin but still quite long. It only took me 20 minutes to straighten my hair perfectly, although someone else probably could have done it a lot quicker because I took boredom breaks.

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This might seem stupid but another thing I like about these straighteners is that they actually have an on/off switch. My other hair straighteners don’t have a switch so I have to turn them off by the plug, which I always forget to do. It’s definitely the little things in life…

I don’t use hairspray but my hair still stayed in tact all day which is definitely a good sign. I feel like I don’t have to use these straighteners a lot to get the straightness that I want, which is obviously better for the condition of my hair. I wash my hair every other day so even when I’m on ‘second day hair’, my hair is still really straight and I only have to quickly go over it to get it how I like it.

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As always, thank you for reading.

Let me know which hair straighteners and curlers you use…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

The Original Beauty Blender | Review

Hello again,

I have used makeup sponges before but they’ve always left me feeling a little disappointed. In the past, I found that they absorbed more foundation than they were actually putting onto my face. After a while I decided that they weren’t worth buying anyone and stuck to stippling and buffing brushes – mainly the Real Techniques ones.

I don’t live under a rock so I’m quite aware that the Original Beauty Blender has a reputation for being the best. Most people actually claim that no brush or sponge can be compared to this one. I’m a sucker for anything a) pink or b) that will make my life easier, so I decided to give it a go.

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I ran the sponge under the tap a little and then rinsed it out so it was damp enough to blend my makeup but not so wet that the product would drip down my face.

Although I’d say I had to use more product than I would with a brush, it wasn’t enough to put me off. I started off by using really small amounts of foundation and built it up slightly just in case it started to look cakey.

I found that because the sponge was damp, it spread the makeup across my face a lot easier than a makeup brush usually does. My skin is naturally really dry and I’ve found over the past couple of months it’s been a lot harder to use foundation brushes on to blend in my foundation and concealer. I feel like the brush has just been drying out my skin even more.

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Although I wouldn’t say that the Beauty Blender made my makeup last any longer, it definitely made it look a lot better throughout the day. My skin feels a lot more hydrated and my makeup looks a lot dewier. Because it covers my face so easily and blends so well, I end up using less makeup than I did with a makeup brush that took a long time to blend properly. I feel like my makeup doesn’t dry out my skin as much as it usually would when I use a brush. Believe me, my skin needs all the moisture it can get.

Overall, I’m really impressed with this. It’s true: the Original Beauty Blender is a lot better than other makeup sponges.

As always, thanks for reading!

Let me know which sponges and brushes you use to apply your makeup, and how well they work…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

This Time Next Year | 2017

Hello again,

Seeing as 2016 has come to an end, I thought I’d think about all of the things I’d achieved over the past year and everything I hope to achieve over the next year. This post is basically going to summarise where I want to be by this time next year.

Firstly, I hope I’m working in a job that I truly love and enjoy doing. At the moment I hope that this job involves freelance writing or social media, but who knows what sort of job I’ll want to be doing in the future? I could completely change my mind. It will only be a part-time job because I’ll still be in uni, but it will be a job nonetheless.

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Another thing that I want to be doing is making money from my blog. Although my blog is primarily a creative outlet for me, my life would be a lot easier if I got paid from it. I’ve just completed my first paid blog post which is a start but it would nice to have a steady income from it.

If I want to do this then I need to self-host my blog, which is a boring concept if you’re not a blogger. Basically, by this time next year, I want to have completely self-hosted by blog so I can use Google AdSense etc.

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I also hope that I’m doing well in uni. I’ll be in my third and final year so I hope that I’m on top of all of my assignments and I’m getting the grades that I want (firsts, obviously).

Hopefully I’ll still be going to the gym this time next year. I’ve barely been over the past couple of months but I recently got back into it. So, I hope that I’m still going regularly and I’m enjoying it instead of seeing it as a burden.

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It would also be a bonus to have completely cleared up my acne. It’s ok at the minute and there are times where I have no acne at all. I now know what I need to do and what products I should be using to clear up my skin so hopefully by this time next year it won’t be an issue for me.

Most importantly, I hope I’m happy with all of the decisions I’ve made up to that point. Even if I make bad decisions, I hope that I’ve put those decisions down to experience and moved on. If nothing else, I really hope that I’m happy.

 

As always, thank you for reading.

Let me know in the comments where you hope to be by this time next year…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

New Year’s Resolutions | 2017

Hello again,

Here are the new year’s resolutions that I’m going to be attempting to stick to this year.

No more fizzy drinks

I don’t drink fizzy drinks at home because I never buy them and would always pick iced tea or water over a Coke if I had the choice. However, when we’re in restaurants and Cem orders a Coke I always end up getting one myself. Bad life choices. I drink a lot of water anyway but hopefully buy cutting out fizzy drinks I’ll drink even more.

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Start assignments early

This is going to be the hardest one. I really want to start all of my uni assignments as soon as possible, preferably on the day they’re set, while I’m motivated and the information is fresh in my mind.

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Read more books

Throughout 2016 I didn’t read as much as I usually do because I have been a lot busier than I usually am. However, in 2017 I want to plough through my ever-growing reading list before it becomes unmanageable. I’ve been reading Dark Places on and off for months now so I really want to finish it. I used to read a new book every few days so I’m not sure how I managed to get so behind…

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As always, thank you for reading.

I hope you had a great new year! Let me know what your resolutions are…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

The Best Bits | December 2016

Hello again,

Winning a pug at Winter Wonderland

To be exact, Cem was actually the pug winner. He played a game where you just have to throw a basketball into a hoop once and you win a prize. The hoop was so so far away but by some form of miracle, we walked away with a giant pug.

Getting a first in the first uni assignment of second year

To be honest I didn’t expect to do as well in this assignment because of the lack of direction that our teacher gave us. A Christmas miracle maybe.

Ice skating at Winter Wonderland

This seems to be mine and Cem’s new favourite thing. We’re actually getting quite good. We can’t skate without holding each other’s hand yet but I’d say we’re getting close.

Handing in all of my winter assignments

As soon as I handed in my last assignment before the Christmas holiday, I felt a massive weight lift off of my shoulders. I am now in full Christmas mode and ready to eat all of the Celebrations I can get my hands on.

Going home for Christmas 

I went home for Christmas a few days earlier than I planned because I just couldn’t wait. It was well work the 9 and a half hour bus journey and the bad back I had from sleeping upright all night.

Decorating a real Christmas tree

It’s been years since we’ve had a real Christmas tree so this year’s tree was a special one. Showing my little brother and sister how Christmas trees are netted was also hilarious.

Christmas Day

Obviously.

Moana 

Me and Lily went to see Moana in the cinema and we LOVED it. The songs are really catchy!

Hosting my first blog chat

This month I hosted by first ever blog chat for The Bloggers Hub on Twitter. Everyone who took part was so lovely and we had a good old natter.

As always, thank you for reading.

Let me know some of your highlights from this month…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

8 Things This Year Taught Me | 2016

Hello again,

I thought it would be nice to look back on the things that I’ve learnt this year. Some are serious, some are more lighthearted – either way, I’ve learnt a lot. Hopefully I’ll look back on this post in years to come and remember how many life lessons 2016 gave me.

Jacket potatoes can be cooked in the microwave

This is something I learnt from the other students I live with. Stab your potato all over and cook for 4 minutes on each side.

Golf is HARD

…but I’m getting much better at it. I’m not even talking about proper golf by the way. I’m talking about the type of golf where you just hit golf balls into the distance as hard as you can.

Soya milk tastes a lot better than normal milk

Drinking ordinary milk now makes me feel sick – that’s something I never thought I’d say.

Using a phone case doesn’t make your phone clean

When I took my phone case off a few months ago after having it on for a long long time, I realised that it doesn’t protect your phone from dirt.

Chocolate biscuits should be eaten in moderation

Something I struggle with but definitely understand. However, I will be going into 2017 full of willingness to consume fewer biscuits.

Green tea isn’t disgusting

I love matcha and I love green tea. Who’d have thought?

Never leave your bag unattended

…or out of your sight for that matter. Paris taught me this one.

It is actually possible to ice skate without falling over

I didn’t actually know I was capable of this. However, me and Cem went ice skating twice and didn’t fall over once.

As always, thanks for reading.

Let me know something that you learned this year, or just laugh at me for not knowing how to cook a jacket potato…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

 

How To Increase Your Website Engagement | AD

Hello again,

Whether you’re a start-up business or a newbie blogger, the thought of having to generate traffic to your website can be quite daunting. Here is a bit of advice about how to deal with Facebook, Twitter and Instagram if you want to ‘get your name out there’.

Facebook

On Facebook there are so many blogging communities such as Bloggers Get Social and Bloggers Worldwide that you can join. They allow you to share your blog and discover other blogs too.

If you have the money to do so, you can also advertise with Facebook to get your name out there. You can choose the maximum amount you’re willing to spend on your ads and target them at specific people i.e. people who you think will be interested in your site. If you’re not sure how to use Facebook to grow your social media presence, social media agencies like Tekfirst in Harrogate can be approached, which serves clients all over the UK.

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Twitter

There are so many blogging communties that you can join on Twitter. Most of them host chats at least once a week which allows everyone involved to share their blog link with others afterwards. I’ve found some of my favourite bloggers by looking through the threads of these chats and joining in when I can! I’ve seen so many chats for different topics: beauty, books, mental health – there’s too many to list but there’s something there for everyone.Tweet_ballonicon2.svg.png

If you don’t wait to pay for Twitter ads to boost your engagement, a lot of bloggers offer their own advertising packages. This involves them mentioning you on their Twitter profile, RTing your Tweets and even placing a link to your blog on their blog. This is a nice alternative to advertising as you’re also helping a fellow blogger earn a living, rather than your money going to Twitter.

Instagram 

I use my Instagram story to tell my followers when I’ve posted a new blog post. I find it so much more effective than using my Snapchat story as I have a lot more followers on Instagram. You can inform people that you have a new post up on your blog and encourage them to go and visit your website. Using an image based platform like Instagram is useful for driving traffic to your website as an image can spark interest, whereas a simple link to your site won’t.instagram-1581266_960_720.jpgAs always, thank you for reading.

Let me know if you’ve got any tips for growing your online presence…

Ways you can reach me:

Bye for now,

Courteney x

This blog post is sponsored by Tekfirst.