Friday, 7 September 2012

Holiday Snaps: Madrid

Over the summer, in the midst of writing my dissertation, I spent some time in Madrid on holiday with my Boyfriend.  I thought I would share a few snaps and a little update, better late than never!

Madrid is one of my favourite cities, alongisde the fact that my parents live there, it also has beautiful weather, shopping and scenery. I would recommend anyone to go for a romantic city break as there is so much to do and the food (and wine) is amazing! It was so hot while I was there, reaching up to 40 degrees, so we spent most of the time by the pool and going out in the mornings or evenings. One of my favourite days was spent in the park which is so beautiful, with loads going on and things to do, including a boat trip onto the lake, which I have wanted to do for ages and happy I finally did it!

If, like me, you love nice food then Madrid is definitely a place to visit. One of my favourite places to get tapas and drinks, is the market (pictured above). You can choose from anything such fresh fish, ham, traditional foods, paella, many desserts as well as cocktails and a massive range of delicious wines. We also went and had a look around the famous Madrid bull ring which was really interesting and the architecture was amazing. We also had some lovely meals out and obviously, spent some time around my favourite Spanish shops (Especially Zara!).

Aside from going on holiday, I have spent the rest of my summer finishing my dissertation and I have now, finally, finished my Master's degree!!  I am now preparing for my big move to London on Saturday to start work!

I hope everyone had a lovely summer - I would love to hear what you've been up to!

I will be back to more beauty and fashion posts in the next couple of days as things get back to normal!

Ali xxx

Friday, 24 August 2012

Perfume on a Budget: Zara Woman: Black

Zara is undoubtedly my favourite high street shop, a perfect mix of classic, trend and quality pieces for a reasonable price. One of Zara's little gems which often goes unnoticed has to be their perfume range. I have owned three other perfumes that I have loved and my most recent purchase is another winner!

You can buy these in both small and larger sizes, I opted for the small 30ml as its perfect to fit into my handbag to use on the go. I bought this in Europe where the prices are a little cheaper and picked it up for a bargain price of 5.95, I think in the UK you can get it for around £7.95.

This is a great evening scent as it is less floral than my previous perfumes, Zara Rose and Zara Femme. Its a beautiful, delicate yet womanly fragrance and as with the majority of Zara perfumes, smells much more expensive! Also, contrary to what you might think, it also lasts quite a long time before the smell wares off.

I swear by Zara's cheap perfume alternativesfor those months in between christmas and birthdays when, as a student, I can't quite justify forking out a fortune for something I can get for the fraction of the price!

Have you ever tried this perfume or any of the other offerings from Zara?

Ali xxx

Have you ever tried

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer

Arguably the most valued item in my everyday makeup bag is the Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer. It also comes with me wherever I go, for those moments when I need to touch up my make-up throughout the day.

It is an excellent and quite high coverage concealer, great for applying over blemishes, evening out my skin tone or topping up worn off foundation on the go. The packaging helps to make this really easy, it comes in a sleek little compact complete with a great sized mirror too. As the texture is quite drying, it isn't too great for concealing the under-eye area, where I prefer to use a lighter, illuminating concealer.

This product is also fantastic to last all year and get you through both the summer and winter months. There are two shades, similar in tone yet there is one darker than the other for those times when you get a little extra colour to help create the perfect custom-made shade. Also helping to make sure that this products lasts throughout the year, is that even with almost everyday use, it takes ages to finish. The high level of pigment means that very little product is needed to achieve perfect coverage, it is super long wearing and it doesn't dry out. In my eyes, this helps to make the high-end price tag of £26 a little more justifiable!!

I always apply this product after my foundation, it is so blend-able and creates a flawless finish. When I use this product at home during my morning make-up routine, I use a brush, blending the product on the back of my hand to warm it up and create the right shade. I then apply lightly onto the needed areas that haven't been covered by my foundation. I then set with my translucent powder and your ready to go! If I find I need a touch up during the day when my make-up begins to look a little tired I warm the product on my hand with my finger and gently apply.

This is something I don't see myself being without any time soon and I would recommend for all skin types and colours!

What's your go-to concealer? Have you tried this one yet?

Ali xx

Monday, 6 August 2012

OOTD: Spanish Sunshine

Dress: Mango
Bag: Aldo
Sandals: Aldo
Watch: Omega
Bracelet: Pandora

Face: Dior BB Cream
Cheeks: Bourjois Bronzer, MAC Fleur Power, MAC Cream Colour Base in Pearl
Eyes: Maybelline Gel Liner, Bourjois Volume Clubbing Mascara, 
MAC Paintpot in Barestudy, Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Tease,
Eyebrows: MAC Lingering
Lips: Mac Plink!

Here is an outfit of the day from my recent visit to Madrid to see my parents. We went out for a nice meal, and as it is still so hot and sunny in the evenings, this is what I wore! I bought this dress while I was out there, I just couldn't resist the gorgeous electric blue colour as this is something I have been looking for for a while. I also love the light silky material and the floaty design because it's perfect for the sunshine and heat.

The bag is my new staple accessory, its the perfect size for me to fit in all my things - I always carry so much around! I think the colour is really versatile so it will go with loads of my outfits.

Tomorrow I am back to Madrid again to make the most of the Spanish sunshine this summer, although I am going to be doing some dissertation work while I'm there! I will also be spending some time with my family and boyfriend, enjoying the food and visiting the sights (and shops!). I am thinking of doing a little holiday photo diary too while I am there!!

I hope everyone's having a lovely summer!

Ali xxx


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