12 Jun 2016

How to Apply Individual Lashes | The Ardell 'Wispy' Look for £3

I will admit it: I am a slave to Ardell's Demi Wispies. They're fluttery, lightweight and, well, they don't look fake.

Whenever I wear Demi Wispies, there's always someone who squints slightly, sometimes tilting their head, and says '...are those... your lashes?'

Pfft, I wish lady. 

While my love affair with Demi Wispies is as true and pure as my new love for pomegranate seeds, sometimes I'm just too damn busy to put them on in the morning. 

World domination is time consuming, after all.

This is where Ardell's individual lashes come in. Surprisingly easy to apply, flabbergastingly long-lasting and (take a deep breath) just £2.95.

Before we go any further you should know (and I discuss it further on) that application and removal of individual eyelashes will almost certainly result in you losing a few of your own. If that makes you think 'Bleugh! No thanks, Kerry' then it's perhaps not for you. If your reaction is more 'Meh, no big deal, I've had individual lashes before, I know the deal' then great, you're going to love the fact you can do this at home.

One packet of 'short flared' will do you nicely. If you want to get all Lisa Eldridge about it you can also pick up a set of the 'medium flared' as pictured below, to apply to your outer corners.

So, the application: how easy is it?


The Kit

To apply:
Ardell Individual Flare Short £2.95
Ardell LashTite Eyelash Adhesive £2.95
Alternative (stronger) glue: Salon System Semi-Permanent Individual Eyelash Glue in Black £3.70
Tin foil

To remove:
Bowl of hot water
Olive oil
Individual Lash Remover £2.95

How to Apply Individual Eyelashes

1. Remove all make up from your eyes and (this is very important) curl your lashes.

2. Put a blueberry-sized amount of glue on a piece of tin foil.

3. Using tweezers, pull a lash cluster from the packet from the end of the lash. Dip the knotted end into the glue and, looking straight into a mirror with your eyes open, place the lash cluster onto your own lashes (not your skin). There's no specific order, but I like to start with one in the middle, followed by one in the outer corner to act as guides, and build them up from there.

4. Contine to place lash clusters along your lash line, keeping the outer corners thicker (and longer, if you're using two lengths). For a really natural look you can vary the placing of the lashes to create a staggered effect that more closely resembles your natural lashes.

5. Allow glue to dry and keep any remaining lashes for touch ups.

How To Remove Individual Eyelashes

1. Heat a bowl of water and place a towel over your head as you lean over the bowl to steam your face.

2. Gently massage olive oil onto your lashes to break the glue down of the looser lashes.

3. Apply your lash remover and gently brush lash clusters away.

4. Repeat the process to get rid of any stubborn lashes. You may lose a few of your own lashes (I've found it's inevitable I'll lose a few here and there) but you should completely avoid pulling the lash clusters off, in order to minimise lash loss.

Once you have individual lashes you'll wonder how you managed without them. No lash curling, no mascara application, make up is twice as fast and your eyes look twice as good. And, for £3 per set and a few extra pennies on glue and remover, you can treat yourself to individual lash extensions whenever you fancy. 

Happy fluttering.

Have you tried individual lashes before? Are you a lover of the Ardell Demi Wispies?


9 Jun 2016

Why I'm Giving up the News After 3 Years in Journalism

I trained as a journalist at university for three years.

I’ve reported on crime, sport, health, education and all areas in between. I’ve made TV packages about bluebell woods, radio segments on Mars One, even presented the university news. We all did. It was three very full on years of a journalism degree.

I was told at the beginning of my studies that I would grow to love the news. I was told I would experience the journalist buzz soon enough, that I would thirst for an exclusive story and feel my blood prickle while frantically writing it up.

That day never came.

Alongside my journalistic training, I also studied Creative Writing. I was dubious of that too (maybe I’m just dubious of everything. Maybe I just like the word dubious). I even considered switching to Marketing after one year as I thought that would be more career proof. I must have gone through at least 2 rounds of meetings and finally got my university to agree to switch. I had asked my Creative Writing lecturer to sign the form to say I could leave, I did it all - before I helpfully told them all that I’d changed my mind.

It wasn’t that marketing isn’t a more certain career path, it’s that it wasn't me.

My work experience, my (dare I say it) skill, thus far had all been in the writing sector. It seemed illogical to throw it all away, even if I did have to endure more poetry assignments. I stuck it out and by the time I reached third year of university I was becoming the writer I had wanted to be. I produced perhaps my favourite story to date and found mentors who revived my excitement for good, delectable literature.

At this time I was still spending the majority of my time studying journalism and the two types of writing are very different. Creative writing is often taking your reader somewhere they haven't been before. News is often finding a story and convincing someone it's worth knowing.

There is some journalism out there that is powerful and intelligent. There is some journalism that is captivating and honest and raw and even (vomit buckets at the ready) inspiring.

But there’s also a lot of shit. And, as far as I can tell, it seems as though the shit is winning.

So when I consider the current journalistic landscape, I have to decide what I want to do. Be on a sinking ship of conscientious journalists, or run down the street naked with the Daily Mail. News may well take a turn for the better and hey, I might have it wrong. After all I’ve had tins of kidney beans in my cupboard longer than my experience in the news sector. I could try to make my way as an honest journalist. I could refuse to sell out, refuse to write about Gigi Hadid’s risky sheer dress or Kim Kardashians ass. I could. I could. But I don’t want to.

I don’t want to doorstep politicians, and I don’t want to question families about their sick children and be sat there thinking of a 'good top line'. The news may well hold power to account, but there's a sales driven undercurrent that disguises money-lust for care.

And so I begin my pursuit of being a writer away from the hard news. I don’t know if I’ll opt for more opinion pieces, maybe lifestyle, maybe science (who the hell knows?). But one thing I do know, is I don’t want to work in ‘hard’ news.

So yes I might be quitting on journalism when it most needs lifting up, but hard news was never for me, and there are far more meticulous writers out there who can have a fair shot at restoring it better than I ever could. And the bitter part of me says I’d rather write stories about things that never happened, than misinform people about the things that did.

From here onwards, I'm a writer, columnist, maybe even a semi-regular blogger. But I'm not a news journalist. And writing those words almost feels as good as writing teeth-sinkingly good fiction.

8 Jun 2016

Hello Pretty: The Delicious Bodyshop Moringa Collection

With 40% off everything online, it was the perfect time to restock on some of my Bodyshop favourites. 

Normally, I'm a slave to the chocolate scented products.

Sweet mother of sugar the chocolate stuff smells good. 

But, since the sun's been shining and kids have been eating ice creams and whatever it is that means summer is here, I thought I'd go for a fresher scent. Enter Moringa. 
Fresh, crisp and delicious: I first came across the Moringa range a few years ago when I had one of the body butters. And, being the unadventurous pony I am, I decided to restock on the Moringa collection because it was a on a fail safe option I know I'd like.

Oh to live the wild life.

The gift box I purchased came with the following items, all ready and raring to turn me into a beautifully smelling, delicate summer flower. Ah.

- Moringa Shower Gel 250ml
- Moringa Body Butter 200ml
- Moringa Body Scrub 50ml
- Moringa Body Mist 100ml
- Moringa Hand Cream 30ml

What I like about the convenience of this set is mindlessness in which you can use it, knowing that the scents will always co-ordinate and you're not going to leave the house smelling like an overpowering cocktail of tutti frutti.

Nobody wants that.

Have any of you tried the Moringa range? What are you go to collections at The Bodyshop? (I can't be the only one who wants has to exercise a heightened self control to prevent me eating the chocolate range).


28 May 2016

Goddess Breakfast: Avocado and Egg on Toast With Lemon & Black Pepper

Did you know in some parts of the world people call avocados 'alligator pears'? I don't know who thought of this name but I think it's appropriate to have this person knighted.

Hang on a moment, I'm being savagely attacked by some sort of flying speck.

Back to avocados, the holy grail, good-fat fruit on health blogger Instagram feeds everywhere. And, well, they have a point. This wholemeal toast (they're actually Kingsmill thins btw. Not sponsored, just delicious) has been my go to morning concoction for a while. 

This avocado and poached eggs combo is filling, wholesome and, most importantly, it's not a chocolate brownie. 

The added black pepper and squeeze of lemon make all the difference - but then I add lemon to everything - but it's also one of those 'anything goes' breakfasts. I've been known to have this with M&S Smokey BBQ Sauce when I'm feeling particularly rambunctious.

Avocados have a good dose of your Vitamin C and Vitamin B-6 needs too, along with a good chunk of potassium. There are a few interesting studies on the benefits of avocados too, (including some preliminary stuff that's demonstrated them to be good for cardiovascular health) so if you really want to geek out you can read more here.

This post isn't sponsored by avocados, but if it was, I'd be okay with that.

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