Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Must-have Cream Eyeshadows

Want something long lasting? Desire saturated vibrant shades? Wish for one-stop eye makeup? Or are you simply longing for something amazing that doesn’t cost too much? If so, these Maybelline Color Tattoo cream gel eyeshadows grants all of your wishes.

-Appealingly smooth texture;
-Strikingly concentrated colours;
-Various shades for you to choose from;
-Help to create simple but gorgeous eye makeup;
-Fantastic base for a stronger eye look or added drama;
-Long lasting water resistant formula can really stay on for a whole day.

Maybelline New York Color Tattoo gel-cream eyeshadows are definitely not new in the beauty world. But after having tried many other similar products (from luxury brands to high street/drugstore brands), I have to stress that they absolutely have the highest price-performance ratio, which means they perform extremely well considering their low price tag.

They have been my go-to cream eyeshadows since I tried the first time. It is not only because they function beautifully, but also due to their £4.99 retail price and are very often associated with offers (like the 3 for 2 offer at Boots right now).

The following are the shades I favour the most from Maybelline. From left to right, there goes 55 Immortal Charcoal, 20 Turquoise Forever, 35 On and on Bronze, 70 Metallic Pomegranate, 65 Pink Gold and 05 Eternal Gold.

You can choose to use makeup brushes to apply these cream eyeshadows, or simply use of your fingertips, swipe over the eyelids and blend. For an everyday (daytime) look, I normally go for 35 On and on Bronze, 65 Pink Gold or 05 Eternal Gold. The 35 On and on Bronze is no doubt my all time favourite.

If you haven’t tried these Maybelline Color Tattoo cream gel eyeshadows, you definitely have to try them out, because they are absolutely worth it. How many of you out there love these little pots as much as me?

Monday, 21 July 2014

Things About Travel -- Flights

I recently visited Cyprus, as you may know if you follow me on instagram or twitter, I have been updating photos there. It was a rather prompt decision to go. Decided on Wednesday, bought my flight tickets on the same day, packed on Thursday night and off to Cyprus on Friday morning.

Honestly, I did not have much time to prepare. However, I think my trip turned out to be pretty enjoyable. I think it’d be nice to share my experience with you, I’m hoping that it may help some of you with your travel planning.

The first chapter is all about flights!

My current favourite website/app to explore flight tickets is . This travel search site compares flight ticket prices across different airlines and anytime of the year. It’s definitely a great help to find the cheapest/most suitable deal or simply to explore potential travel destinations. I always book my tickets directly with the airlines or travel agencies linked on the website.

For budget flights, besides Skyscanner, I normally browse Ryanair, Easyjet, Flybe, Cheapflights, Travelsupermarket, Lastminute, etc. for good prices or sales/promotions. Although you do need to pay attention when you book with these airlines, because there may be some sneaky hidden fees. For example:

- There may be hidden charges for VAT, airport duty and airport fees, etc. So, never assume the price they advertise is the final price.

- There could be additional charges for luggage (except hand luggage, though there’s specific requirements of size and weight for it being free).

- Some airlines may have check-in charges or boarding pass printing charges. Definitely make sure you have read the terms and conditions and be prepared.

- There could be a charge for food, drinks or even something as simple as a blanket.

I always use a comparison website to make sure I get the best deal. Budget airlines are not always the cheapest, especially when it’s not their sales/promotion period. For long haul journeys, like flying from the UK to China, I also like to use KLM, British Airways, Lufthansa, Omegatravel, etc.. Mostly I would visit the airlines’ websites depending on which part of the world I am traveling to and from. Specifically for flights from the UK to China, my favourite airline is KLM.

KLM is a Dutch airline operating flights globally. The price you see on their website normally is the final price you pay. When they have sales/promotions going on, you may find yourself the best bargain ever for long haul flights particularly. For example, their offer this year for return tickets from the UK to China started from only £399. The main reason I prefer KLM to the other global airlines is because of my own travel routine. I have found that they have the best connecting times and routes for my needs. Not only is their service always tiptop, but also they give you a free blanket and a pouch full of some basic essentials in it for long haul passengers. Of course, their various entertaining TV channels are always great companions in the sky.

For my recent trip to Cyprus, the flights I took were with Monarch airways’. It was my first time travelling with Monarch.

-First of all, if you want to check-in online you will also have to pay to pre-book a seat. If you don’t want to pay for a pre-allocated seat, you can check-in for free at the airport, but you will be allocated a seat at random.

-The free hand baggage allowance is 5 kilos and no bigger than size of 56 x 40 x 25cm. You can carry a small duty free bag from the departure airport too. You can also choose to upgrade your tickets with hold luggage, breakfast and etc..

-Monarch airline doesn’t allow alcohol on board to drink from duty free, other than the ones you buy on the plane. (Not like this is critical to me, just in case someone wants to know).

-From my experience, priority boarding does not make much difference at all. Monarch can definitely do better at managing boarding for passengers.

-Cabin crews were polite and nice.  

-However, Monarch may need to pay more attention to their inventory management. Many passengers were sneezing after being on board in the low temperature set on the central air conditioner for a while and they did not even have enough blankets to sell to the passengers in need.

In conclusion, I don’t mind flying with Monarch again, yet I do hope they will improve.

P.S. to help find the best possible seats on planes, seatguru is normally the one I use.

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Self Challenge #1 Result Review

My first official self-challenge, the Beauty Shopping Detox, has been ongoing for 4 weeks now and today is the 30th day. I am proud to announce that, to my own surprise, I have completed this challenge.

Even the thought of having set myself this challenge was fretful in the beginning. I could not see myself passing it at all. It certainly wasn’t easy and I didn’t make it through without a fight.

With all the sales, promotions, special sized packages being thrown in front of me, I undoubtedly chose one of the worst times of the year to commence this challenge. When a part of your routine involves online shopping, checking subscribed beauty and fashion emails, etc. like me, non-shopping for 30 days is like a torturing drug withdrawal process.

It may sound a bit pathetic, but at least I am facing my own problem and willing to tackle it. The following methods have helped me get through the past 30 days:

1. Resolutely deleting subscribed emails without even skimming the titles (maybe I should just unsubscribe from them?).

2. Avoid walking past beauty counters/windows.

3. Telling myself that I DO NOT need any more beauty/makeup products (psychological implication works very well for me).

4. Looking over my currently owned boxes of brand new, unused beauty products to help myself remember to use them before I buy any more.

5. When I was struggling, I comforted myself that it’s only going to be 30 days. So if I make it through the challenge, I can buy things that have ran out without slipping back into my bad habits.

6. If the sales seems too good to miss, remind yourself that there’s always sales next year and they may be better.

7. Distract yourself from obsessing over it, e.g. learning something new or traveling.

8. You can fail anyone but yourself.

I was very much distraught at times during these 30 days. Yet, I sailed through the winds and waves of all kinds of onrushing sales offers and stuck with the challenge to the end thanks to all the doctrines above.

By achieving this challenge, it has made me realise that I don’t have to blindly shop for things when they’re not in need; nothing is impossible, simply give it a try and strong willpower will help you through. From this point forward, I am definitely going to monitor my spending and make sure that I waste less.

Self-challenge, done, yet continues.