Monday, 12 June 2017

Phillimore Gardens

Last week I spent a few days in London with my sister, Laura.  Wednesday was spent drinking copious amounts of wine, which meant our Thursday began rather late (I think we left her place around 3pm... I know).  That said, the day wasn't a complete write-off.  We managed to make it to the Design Museum in Kensington for a little wander round in the late afternoon, which was well worth the visit if you like all things design-related, before wandering into a side street to take some blog pics in front of a random person's (rather beautiful) house.

I've recently got really into my comfort clothing, fashion-wise.  Ever since culottes blew up a year or so ago, they've become my best friend, especially these babies from Zara with their cheeky side split, which you may remember me raving about in this post.  Although not so practical for the windy weather, they're incredibly versatile and were super cheap (around £18-20 if I remember correctly). 

Denim Jacket - Vintage / Top - Urban Outfitters / Culottes - Zara (similar
Bag - BrandAlley / Shoes - New Look (try these)

And as much as I'm trying desperately not to buy too much into trends, I felt like I had already resisted the gingham trend for far too long and it was only a matter of time before I succumbed.  And this top is a lovely little gingham hybrid - quite a large print, so easy to wear and super sheer so perfect for layering.  

I find blues and blacks by far the easiest colours to style - I could've easily thrown this on with a leather jacket and heels instead and worn it out for drinks, or equally could've worn trainers to keep it even more casual.  Wunderbar!

Ruby x 


Thursday, 8 June 2017

Kiko Tropic Heat Dewy Stick: Review

With the weather gradually getting warmer, I'm reaching far less for beaming pearlescent highlighters, and going more for a subtle 'glow' with my makeup looks.  In summer I prefer to go more minimal and natural in terms of makeup, and I've recently been trying out this Tropic Heat Dewy Stick from Kiko as an alternative to my MAC Cream Colour Base

This product comes in at £7.90, so fairly affordable, and as with most of the Kiko products I love the simple, ergonomic yet stylish packaging.  The product applies easily, and gives a dewy, almost slightly wet look to the skin depending on how heavily you apply it.  It's completely uncoloured (which I really like) and has no shimmer or glitter to it, which I'm also a big fan of.  

My main qualm with the dewy stick would be that it can shift foundation quite badly if you're not careful with it - you can't be too heavy handed, in spite of the fact that its effect is quite subtle.  It does also feel ever so slightly sticky on the skin... but to be honest this was something I had expected, especially with a main ingredient being beeswax. 

All in all, gives a natural, sunny glow to the skin.  For £7.90, not too bad at all.  What do you guys think?

Ruby x 


Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Orange-Copper Eye-Catcher

I'm not usually one for makeup trends - but the burnt orange, smoky red or even popping tangerine eyeshadow looks I have seen here there and everywhere recently have really caught my attention.

However, as with all trends, I've also been (only slightly) reluctant to go out and buy a shit load of orange-hued palettes in case come the end of summer everyone's back to more subtle daytime looks.  What I have instead invested in is just a couple of products - this awesome mascara in 'Warm Up' from MAC (a la the wonderful Megan Ellaby), and B.'s vibrant eye shimmer in Copper.  This was only very recently discontinued at Superdrug, as they're re-launching the range, but it's a glossy, creamy eye colour with gold sparkles.      

Combined, they create this gorgeous (yet not too) wild orange eye look.

The thing I love about the B eye shimmers is that they're so easy to use, and also really buildable, so you can use them all over the lid and simply apply more where you want better colour intensity.  I literally threw a load of this onto my eyelids, did a bit of winged liner on top and was good to go - no faffing around with palettes or multiple shades (or even brushes - your index finger is as good as any brush with this kind of product).

But the real eye catcher is the mascara - a nice thick coating of classic black on the top lashes, combined with the awesome bright orange shade from MAC.  

Paired with pretty much any nudey brown lipstick - the one I wore is also from B., in the shade 'Toffee' - this look is a winner, if I do say so myself.  What are your thoughts?

Ruby x 


Saturday, 13 May 2017

Dress-ing it down

Anyone who knows me will probably also know I'm not really a dress girl.  It's certainly something I've become painfully aware of in the last couple of weeks, as I've been searching for something graduation worthy - in vain, might I add.  

But, from time to time I do stumble across something I like.  And of course I found this one in Urban Outfitters!

I've always liked the look of longer dresses, but found it quite tricky to find styles which aren't too floaty but also aren't too form-fitting - I want the freedom to eat all the ice cream and nobody know about it, you see.  This one's the perfect hybrid, made with a slinky material that fits a bit closer in all the right places.

I also love that it has this sexy little side split which isn't too impractical because it only goes to just above the knee - wonderful.  

And, more importantly, this is one of those dresses that you don't have to dress up for.  I love this with sandals and a big shirt, equally with trainers and denim jacket... there's loads of ways you can style something like this (of course you could also go for heels and a snazzy jacket).  I got this particular shirt from the Brighton laines for a fiver, and so far it's been my most worn Spring purchase.

Dress - Urban Renewal @ UO / Bag - BrandAlley / Shirt - Vintage
Sunglasses - TK Maxx (Derek Lam) / Sandals - H&M (suuuuper old)

 Update on the bag - still holding up fairly well!  And I'm loving it.  My slight qualm would be the suede has worn pretty quick and gets grubby, but what kind of an idiot buys suede thinking it'll stay clean... me, perhaps.

Have a fab weekend darlings,

Ruby x


Saturday, 29 April 2017

Lips of the Month: Chili

This month I've been a girl of simple appearance.  In between studying, working, eating, studying, sleeping and studying makeup has been the last thing on my mind.  However I recently went for a coffee with a friend who was back in Brighton for a couple of weeks from a year abroad in Alicante, which of course warranted lipstick.  And rediscovered my pure, unadulterated love for Mac's Chili.

 This is a fiery, terracotta-toned red shade that is still beautifully wearable during the day.  In spite of being a matte formula (which I traditionally haven't got on with), this one is not nearly as drying as my ultimate love-hate Mac lipstick, Velvet Teddy.  I didn't really believe the Sales Advisor when she told me the lipsticks vary slightly in mattifiying effect from shade to shade - but she was right!

The colour is rich and long lasting, and perfect for any other green-eyed girls (monsters?) out there.  Maybe I'll finally become a red lipstick girl - can anyone recommend any other shades?

Ruby x 



Saturday, 22 April 2017

Nars Eye Paint in Black Valley: Review

And so, my quest for an above average eyeliner continues.  Since the birth of this blog I've grappled with the likes of Smashbox and Stila's offerings, but to little avail.  Smashbox didn't have quite the right amount of pigment, and Stila was not enough bang for your buck (I was going through one every couple of months!), so I decided it was time to try something new...and that something is Nars' Eye Paint in the shade Black Valley.


This is a gel formula liner, which I have tended to have the most luck with over the years - I'm certainly better with a brush than with a pen.  I also think gel liners work out much better value in the end.  This was £19 from Space NK, and by the looks of it will probably last me 2-3 years, as a little goes a long way! 

The colour is pretty much as black as you can go, and dries to a gorgeous deep matte.  The formula is creamy and very movable, making it fairly easy to apply as long as you've got a trusty liner brush to hand.  I haven't yet tried it, but the sales assistant I spoke to about it in the shop also mentioned you can use these paint pots as all over creamy shadows as the colour is quite buildable - however I'm not too sure I'd be using it all over my lid in this shade (unless I was dressing up as a panda, maybe).

My only qualm with this would be the staying power, as always.  I think they need to invent an eyeliner that includes some kind of safe adhesive in its ingredients.  I'm fine for the first few hours, but once those facial oils start to creep through I'm in smudge city.  I've found using an eyelid primer or applying over the top of a powdered lid definitely helps - it's still not fail safe, but it'll do for now. 


Will my quest for eyeliner ever end?  I'll keep you posted...

Ruby x


Saturday, 8 April 2017

Denim Denim

Pretty much anyone who knows me will also probably know I have a massive thing for denim.  And when I saw this jacket at a vintage stall in Berlin back in February (for more on that trip click here and here) it was love at first sight, despite it being grossly out of season and really, really cold.

Although it was a little steep at around €45 from what I can remember, I think denim jackets are always an excellent investment - not saying you can't get good 'uns cheaply - but that when the right one does come along, buy it and cherish it, because they last forever.  Similarly, these jeans have seen me through the past 3 years (minimum), all year.  And I think paired with the jacket, despite being slightly different shades, it's a match made in quirky heaven. 

Shoes - TK Maxx (similar) / Jeans - Urban Outfitters Urban Renewal (similar) / Top - Zara (similar)
Jacket - Vintage (United Colours of Benetton) / Bag - BrandAlley

The other thing I couldn't not talk about is this bag, another love affair story.  With student loan having just dropped, and a couple of my favourite cross body bags having just bitten the dust, I thought I'd treat myself to something a little better made that will hopefully last me longer.  

I got this from a website called BrandAlley which is a 'non-stop designer sale', aka Aladdin's cave for bargain hunters like me.  I paid £45 for this in the end as I got a £10 first purchase discount, but that's with a 74% discount on the initial cost.  Yeah, I know.  It's also super reminiscent of the Chloé Faye bag too, but at a fraction of the cost.

And finally, I introduce my latest TK Maxx find - these very Celine-esque sunglasses from a brand called Derek Lam.  I can't fault TK Maxx for their range of sunnies - you can find so many brands at so many different price points, but all really good bang for your buck. 

So, that concludes the whistle stop tour of where the first 20% of my student loan has gone.  Enjoy the sunshine my loves,

Ruby x