Sunday, 2 November 2014

Halloween Make-up Tutorial | Dead Belle (Beauty and the Beast)

What you need:
Eyeshadow – dark grey, light grey, white,
Black lipstick,
Fake Eyelashes,

First things first, begin by washing your face. Make sure it is totally make-up free and ready to go, then once clean, apply moisturiser. This will create a base coat for your make up and therefore will hopefully prevent your skin getting dry.

Once you have primed your face, take some foundation, I’m using Maybelline dream matt mousse, and put some under your eyes, on your eyelid, and anywhere else on your face that might be a little bit blotchy. Doing this will help the makeup stick and stay on for the majority of the night.

Then take some white eye shadow and cover your whole face. I applied this with a brush as I found it gave a smoother effect. I used eye shadow instead of face paint as it gave a more translucent look, giving a greater ‘dead’ effect. It isn’t as heavy as face paint either and so I knew once removing I wouldn’t have damaged my skin.

The next step is the fun part. It’s all about the contours! Take grey eye shadow (I’m using a palette from Next) and with a brush add some darkened circles to your forehead, nose and chin, then follow the line of your check bones and in a circular motion shade in a triangular section under the check bone line that you have just created. This will give you a gaunt look, highlighting your facial features.

Then take a darker shade of grey and go over where you’ve just been. This will create a harsher feel to your make up and will give your face more depth and shadowing. Make sure you go heavy on the top lid of your eyes with the darker grey!

To create a bruised effect, it’s best to take some purple eye shadow and put this under your eyes and up to your eyebrow. It’s all about blending it in with the dark grey. Imagine you’re going for a smokey eye effect and keep on blending until you’re happy with the look.

Then apply some black eyeliner to your water and lower lash line. Also not forgetting to smudge some onto your upper lash line. Don’t worry if this doesn’t look perfect, it’s not supposed to be a polished look.

Now for the part that makes the design. Apply black lipstick...
Normally I would just it on black lipstick and keep topping it up throughout the night, but Halloween is a special occasion and therefore, I decided to colour in my lips with black pencil eyeliner. I then went over the top with some chapstick which seemed to seal in the liner. I then covered this with black lip stick and to top it off, and give a matt feel to the look, I applied some black eye shadow on the top, I find that this helps keep it on throughout the night and gives your lips a fuller feel.

Finally to finish the look, apply some mascara to your upper and lower lashes, curl them, then place on some false eyelashes. I always find that false eyleshes tend to stick on more if you put on the glue, and wait around thirty seconds before sticking them on. This widens your eyes and makes the look a lot more girly and flattering... It adds that bit of life to the look. 

After all of this, you now look dead beautiful. Throw on your outfit and then enter the night.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Some things never change | A reminiscence

I’ve been at university for a month now, and I’ve realised that once you get here and you start making friends and settling in, you begin to lose track of time and life and people back at home. You get taken into this whirlwind, a huge journey that will, hopefully, lead you to great places. It’s as though you’ve been thrown into a whole other world and are seated in the fastest rollercoaster you can imagine. You have good days and bad days, ups and downs, do things you never imagined you would.

I never thought I’d make it past the first week, let alone the first month. Finding my feet in a new city, learning how to cook, clean and fend for myself, making friends and starting a new course, the whole prospect of this was daunting to me and still is.

With being an hour away from my family, home sickness is a worry. Thankfully I’ve not suffered from it much, but there have been times where the only thing I’ve wanted is to be in my dad’s arms or sat watching The Walking Dead snuggled up to my mum. It sounds lame but I actually really miss those warm cosy Sunday nights just chilling in front of the TV. I see home sickness as a good thing. Although at the time you feel pretty numb and all you want to do is curl up in your own bed, it gives you a sense of grounding. It makes you understand just how much you appreciated your life before university, your parents and everything they’ve done for you.

In a way it gives you more strength.

I was lucky enough to go home for my mum’s birthday last weekend and see my whole family, and when coming back on the train I had this realisation with myself at how so much has changed over my life and yet equally so much has stayed the same.

Here are a few things that will never change...

-          I used to dress up in anything I could find as a child, whether that be a devil for halloween, an elf or even a clown! I guess things haven't changed too much, I mean,  Halloween is on the horizon... who knows? I may embrace the night as a devil again!

-          I’ve always been interested in history, when I was younger I'd dress up as a knight... but now I'd prefer to be saved by one!

-          I could kick anyone’s ass at Taekwondo and learnt how to defend myself, but now no one messes with me...

-          I used to be quite a messy eater when I was little, and I guess I’m quite a messy eater now... (I'm writing this after getting mayonnaise all around my mouth from a McDonnalds, Some things never change).

I wore the most adorable hats when I was little, and I still wear some pretty groovy hats now...

I was always up for new challenges, and I guess I still am up for challenges!!

Moving away from home puts your whole life in perspective, but even though I’m at university, I still feel strongly connected with everyone back at the ranch. We’re a really close knit family, I trust them with my life and know that I can talk to them about anything anytime. This relationship I have with them will always stay the same.

It’s kind of weird how things have changed and yet on the other hand they really haven't. Maybe it’s situations that change and us as humans adjust to the situations but don’t actually change ourselves. Or maybe with new experiences and new beginnings you have to adapt and change your character in order to live. It’s like I’m a chameleon camouflaging into my surroundings but when you look closely I’m still the exact same person I was when I was 5 years old. 

Monday, 13 October 2014

Vintage | Shirt Hunt

With it being this time of the year again, when the nights start closing in and the mornings seem that little bit more nippy it’s nice to stock up your wardrobe with some rustic colours, hats and scarfs.
After having that little shirt craze the other day, I took myself to a vintage fair hoping to fall on something good. Normally I have such a struggle finding things at vintage fairs. The items are either waaay too big, or just impractical. But here there were quite a few bits that were my size (mainly 70s flower power stuff though). Don’t get me wrong, flower power is awesome, I just don’t know when or where I would wear it!

I did however manage to land on a bargain, and bagged myself a shirt.

After riffling through the small section for what seemed like ages, I found this little beauty! The rummaging was certainly worth it.

I absolutely adore the colours, that kind of mucky, combat green is definitely my favourite autumn colour at the moment, especially when paired with a flash of auburn making this my dream shirt.

Everything at the fair was so cheap, they decided the price on weight and for a kilo of clothes it was only £15. With being a student and living on a very tight budget cheap and cheerful is the way forward and so with this frame of mind, seeing the shirt was only £3.75, I had to get it.

It really is a stand out piece and one that I couldn’t leave behind.

The fair is around again in Manchester on the 15th November at The Kings Arms… If you’re a fan of vintage you won’t want to miss it.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Urban Outfitters | Shirt Wishlist

When it comes to shirts, I cannot resist. Especially with it being autumn time. I find that with the seasons changing and with the air getting that bit cooler, shirts are a great way to keep warm but still have that essence and reminder of sunny days.

They’re the perfect transeasonal attire. If warm you can roll up the sleeves giving off a flawless laid back look and when cold you can layer them up with scarfs and vest tops. You cannot go wrong.

Here I have found some shirts from urban outfitters that are definitely going on my wish list.

The first is this stunner, the design is gorgeous and even though powerful, it feels just enough to add that bit of statement to your wardrobe. With it being silk it will still carry a floaty summer feel to it but pair it with a hat and a scarf and I think you’d be able to get away with an autumn look.
Price: £35
Click here to purchase it!

I love the colour of this shirt. It has such an autumnal feel and reminds me of the burn read crispy leaves you see on the footpaths of parks. As it is over sized it will have that slouched feel and you’d be able to get away with a bit of layering which makes it ideal for those frosty mornings!
Price: £40
Click here to purchase it!

This shirt has a sort of worn faded look to it, which to me, really gives it that edge. It almost has a combat feel to it, which I could imagine may give its owner a sense of empowerment and strength. it would look great both open and layered up or closed and rolled up, and is extremely  high up there on my autumn wish list!
Price: £30
Click here to purchase it!

- Photos from the Urban Outfitters Website (

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Fresher's | Update

I’m just about to head up to the kitchen (the kitchen is on the top floor, and I’m on the ground floor… it’s a bit of a trek!) so here’s a quick update of my last week…

I’m here everyone! I’ve finally moved to Salford uni and what a surreal week it has been. I still don’t feel like this is it for the next three years. It’s as though I’m on some kind of holiday camp and within the next few days I’ll be going home, but I guess when the course starts and things get serious it’ll begin to feel real.

Home sickness hasn’t really hit me yet. I’ve not had time in Fresher’s week to dwell on things like that, I’ve either been too busy making friends and meeting new people, or sleeping. Though I must admit the first morning when I woke up to silence and there wasn’t the sound of my dad pottering around downstairs or the sound of my mum’s hairdryer on, it did feel pretty strange.

My room is decent. There’s enough space for me which is all that matters. Though I need to invest some time and money into making it feel homely. The walls are bare and are just a wash of cream which is giving it a clinical feel at the moment. But on our next trip to Manchester, I may pick up some posters and let the decorating commence.

My housemates are amazing. I didn’t really know what to expect and was kind of nervous about meeting who I was living with for the next year but they are all ace! We’re already like one big family. Everyone’s into the same kind of music too so we have been discovering some pretty cool clubs in Manchester this past week.   

Tomorrow is the beginning of induction week which is exciting! I’ll get to meet everyone I’ll be working with and the tutors I’ll be having for the next year. I actually can’t wait to begin the course. I can’t believe Freshers is over and done with now. It has been a pretty fun, I don’t think it could have gone any better… except for Fresher’s Flu… I could have done without that. 

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Osmo Clay Wax | Review

Since getting my hair cut short on one side, I’ve been trying to find something that will give it that extra volume, something that creates a kind of messy but styled look and I have managed to fall upon the exact product which gives my hair that little bit more life.

It’s called Osmo clay wax and it is ace. It gives a firm hold which lasts for the whole day, I managed to walk the illuminations the other night and my hair came out the other side looking pretty much like it did when I left the house… and that never happens for me! 

It doesn’t go flaky when it has been in for a while, and if you use the right amount it’s easy enough to wash out.

You don’t need a lot for the wax to hold your hair so I imagine the tin will last for ages. It’s not thick and it doesn’t way your hair down, it just leaves it with a really good texture and on top of that, it smells amazing.

I would really recommend Osmo clay wax, it is a little bit pricey, I managed to get it for £7.50, but like I say, I think the tin it will last a long time and with the way it makes your hair look, it’s really worth it.

You can purchase it on Amazon:

Tweet me @abigillibrand if you’ve used Osmo before, or if you know of another good clay wax 


Tuesday, 9 September 2014

University | Before the Beginning

And so the packing begins, the tears are flowing but the excitement is brewing. I don’t know how I’m going to react living away from home. It’ll be a huge shock I think for the first few weeks, having to learn how to fend for myself, I mean I can barely cook! I’m going to miss my mum’s homemade dinners. I guess though, it will be like playing dolly for a while. Making my room look pretty and colourful with posters and photographs, making new friends and learning my way around a city I’ve never really explored before.

I know it’s going to be ace once I get there, it’s just the initial leaving home that will be hard. My family are so close knit that I can’t imagine spending a week away from them let alone four months! But my university is only a 45 minute train ride away, which is how long it took to get to my college on the bus and I made that journey every day, so realistically, home is only down the road.

In less than a week my whole life if going to change drastically. I’m looking forward to it, I’m scared and nervous but at the same time really excited. I’m going to be studying what I want which I cannot wait for, the course I’m taking looks amazing and spending three years doing something I love is going to be awesome.

Now I’m just reaching the stage of ‘What do I need to take?’

My aunty has been amazing and has taken me out shopping for all of the basics – utensils, plates, and bowls etc. I even have my own cheese grater - sounds stupid but I’m actually pretty stoked about all that kind of stuff. I chose a colour theme of green and purple so my room is going to look like something out of The Jokers house, but they go together so well! We managed to find some bright green and purple coat hangers too – oh the small things :’)

I’ve gotten my whole wardrobe sprawled across my sister’s bed and I think I have one tiny closet to put it in when I get to uni which will be interesting. I might just have to pick out my favourite jumpers and leave my summer clothes at home. But what if I want to wear shorts one day? Ahh, the hardship! I’ll have to see how much I can squeeze into my room I think and then send my parents back with what didn’t make it into my wardrobe. I’m really praying that there is space under my bed that I can fill with clothes and shoes.

One thing I am hoping for is a housemate that can deal with spiders. I don’t know about you, but these scary female house spiders seem to be appearing everywhere and they’re absolutely huge! I have to admit they are very impressive, but I don’t think I’ll be wanting to share a shower with one if I can help it. I’m going to have to become brave, oooor find someone who already is brave…

It is certainly going to be an adventure and I so hope that the uni experience is as good as everyone says it is.

Wish me luck!