April Favorites

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Hiya! So, I've been wanting - and attempting - to make a favorites post since February, but I just haven't been able to until now. Monthly favorites are some of my favorite posts to read and videos to watch from the bloggers and vloggers I follow, so I decided it's about time I sit down and make my own.

April was a particularly unique month for me because I was traveling for the majority weeks of it, which is more than I've ever travelled before in my life. On March 31, I left Edinburgh for Paris - from there, I went to Lisbon, Madrid, briefly back to Edinburgh, and then up to the Isle of Skye. Less than a week later I left Edinburgh for Brighton, then Cardiff, then Swansea, and finally Cheshire. Oh, and there was a quick day-trip to Glasgow somewhere in there as well. I returned to Edinburgh for good on April 27th - just shy of a month after I left. 

I'm not going to lie about it - all that traveling honestly drove me a little crazy and took a toll on my sanity. As I'm very much a homebody, I spent quite a bit of this past month feeling overwhelmed and out of place. This was frustrating because I knew how lucky I was to be seeing such incredible places - but I just couldn't get my emotions to agree with my brain. The latter half of the month was better than the first because I was in hotels, not hostels, and with my dad and brother, who I trust to travel with. Doubtless, though, I saw so many incredibly beautiful places this past month and learned so many new things. In addition, all that packing and unpacking (and only having a tiny bag to carry everything in) taught me a lot about what products I really, actually use every day - making April the perfect time for me to start compiling monthly favorites. So, without further ado, let's get into it!

1. My Converse 
Okay, so I didn't actually bring these traveling with me, but I realized their value in my daily life as soon as I returned to Edinburgh. Whilst I was traveling I struggled pretty hard-core to determine what shoes I should bring with me - for the first half of my month I could only bring one tiny carry on bag (thanks, EasyJet), which did not leave me space for much of anything, especially not multiple pairs of shoes. Problematic, because shoes are one of my favorite fashion-things (whatever) and I feel as though you need different pairs for different things. Sight-seeing shoes, going out shoes, beach shoes, just hanging out shoes - one pair just doesn't cut it for me. 
My trusty black Converse, though - why did I ever stop wearing these? In late middle school and early high school I wore them literally every single day, shamelessly, regardless of the occasion
(flashbacks to me at the eighth grade boat trip wearing converse with my dress in a vain attempt to be Demi Lovato).
rough, I know

 I've been sort of feeling that vibe lately (and by that I mean I've been listening to a lot of music that I loved in high school... not feeling the vibe of the photo above) and, thus, I've found myself returning to my Converse more often than not - not the same pair, I promise. Since I've been back in Edinburgh, I've worn them pretty much every day and I've determined that, while middle-school Gwen was generally a travesty, she was right about these shoes. Converse are comfy, they go with everything, and they make every outfit look perfectly casually cool. I especially love them in Edinburgh, where I find it impossible to wear anything with a heel. Also, I think I can make Converse work for most occasions, (barring super fancy ones) so catch me wearing them out-out when I get back to Skidmore in the fall - and I wore them with an appropriate dress just the other day and they looked lovely. Long live black converse, long live wearing your converse with your dress. Thanks, Demi.

2. Rimmel Stay Matte Powder (Transparent)
I bought this powder sort of on a whim because I had heard a few Youtubers I really like talking about how good it is and I saw it in Boots and thought 'well, why not?' I can't even express how glad I am. The only place I really tend to get oily is on my chin, and this powder works like an absolute dream - I can just brush it on and expect a flawless finish. It makes the rest of my skin look airbrushed and smooth as well, and costs like £5 at Boots. Zero complaints. 

3. Maybelline FIT Me Matte and Poreless Foundation (shade 115 Ivory)
This another rediscovered product. Over the summer this was my go-to foundation, but it sort of fell to the wayside in favor of my Estee Lauder, L'oreal, and Nars foundations. When I was packing, I picked it because it was my least expensive foundation so I didn't have to worry too much about it breaking, leaking, or accidentally leaving it behind. This was probably the best move I could have ever made. Honestly, this foundation applies like a dream, settles like a dream, matches me like a dream, and doesn't really made or get oily. The first day I applied it in Paris I was literally in shock because I didn't remember it working that well at all. Like the Rimmel powder, this foundation is a flawless drugstore product. Can't reccomend it enough, can't appreciate it enough. Thanks for always coming through, Maybelline FIT Me.

4. Topshop Tall Leather Jacket 
My mom dropped by for a few days in March, so obviously I went shopping with her. One of the things we picked up was a Topshop Tall (I know I'm short) leather jacket that has been my literal ride or die since the day she bought it for me. Even though it's from the Tall line this jacket fits me perfectly (sans slightly too-long sleeves that I like anyway) and looks incredible with just about any outfit. I've had a few leather jackets, but never one I've loved this much. It takes any outfit up one kick-ass level and has already seen me through five different countries and like a million different cities. I think we're going to have a beautiful friendship. 

5. Lush shampoo bar 
I have my best friend Ella (check out her blog here!) to thank for this favorite. Ella's making a pretty cool effort to transition into using all cruelty free products, and, in doing so, she recommended the Lush shampoo bars to me. I picked one up because I am easily swayed (all you need to do is tell me something is good and inexpensive and I'll probably buy it, tbh), and it's probably one of the best purchases I've made in a while. I have the Jason and the Argan Oil bar simply because it was the only one that I liked the smell of, but this is apparently the best bar anyway. The idea of a shampoo bar seemed kind of absurd to me at first but I literally cannot say enough good about this product now that I've been using it for just over a month. I have to shampoo and rinse twice with any other shampoo, but this bar just takes one good scrub to get my hair clean - and, I feel like my hair stays cleaner, and more voluminous, longer. It works better than any other shampoo I've used, the only downside is that it's quite hard to store as it will get stuck inside the container if put in while wet. I put up with it, though, because it's so damn good - for me, for my hair, and for animals, which is pretty cool.

6. Stories for Monday
My music favorite this month is Stories for Monday by The Summer Set, which came out on the first. I loved The Summer Set back in high school, but kind of fell out of touch with that love until recently. TSS still has the same feel-good vibe I loved them for back in high school, which I really appreciate. They make me want to party and drink whisky straight out the bottle and make out, like, a lot, while wearing a leather jacket. Stories for Monday has been on constant repeat since I bought it, and I'm counting down the days until Ella comes and we see them in Glasgow.  

7. Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig
So, I'm not actually finished with this book yet, but it deserves a mention nonetheless. This book has been everywhere in the UK as of late - my friend Madison, who's in London at the moment, mentioned in back in January, and one of my best friends, Maddi, had a copy in her house in Madrid. She let me read a bit when I visited, and I picked up my own copy as soon as I got back to Edinburgh. Like I said, I haven't actually finished this book yet but I already know I love it - and I already know that it's one of the most important books I've ever read. Despite tackling quite heavy topics - depression, anxiety, suicide, the like - this book is easy to read, funny in parts, and incredibly hopeful and heartwarming. I would urge everyone to pick up a copy of this book, regardless of their relation to mental illness. I can honestly see this book changing and saving lives. 

8. Sweet Potato Fries 
Nothing to say here other than I've been making these a lot lately and I love them. I use Jamie Oliver's super easy recipe, which you can find here.

So, that's all for my first ever favorites post! Hopefully I'll have another one up at the end of May, but until then I've got a paper and an exam to work on before heading home in just a few weeks - it's crazy how close I am now! Until next time! 

xx g

No comments

Post a Comment