Thursday, 31 December 2015

Let's Reflect: 2015

Hi everyone!
Well I honestly cannot believe I'm writing another Let's Reflect year end post. It feels 2 minutes since I wrote the 2014 entry. I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and are enjoying the festive season.

I started off this year knowing it was going to be the biggest changing year of my life so far. Even though I thought I was prepared for it, I wasn't.
I'm going to be honest, this year has been so so difficult.
There's been loads of emotions and a lot of times where I've felt lost and just confused. I've been really disappointed at myself on many occasions.
That's not to say I've not had good times too, because I seriously have, I just have been weighed down by the bad points of the year in particular.

The beginning of the year was tough in the fact that my mum was unwell in hospital and during that point my dog died, who had been my auntie's, which was a tough time because it was so sudden and somewhat traumatic day. I feel sick whenever I think about it. It was a really weird time and I do wonder how I managed to be honest and I think it was down to those close to me who did help me during that time, Eastenders 30th anniversary distraction and YouTube. Oh and my media project (more on that later!)

I did struggle with my anxiety getting worse towards the end of sixth form, with exams getting even more difficult to complete. I left sixth form, which also happened to be the school I had attended for 7 years, which was a big jump and really sad.

Leavers Ball was also a prominent moment as it was the last time our entire year group would be together and it was a really enjoyable night which led to me dancing for hours non-stop. It was a great time and everybody looked amazing and it was truly celebrating the year group we had been for the past 7 years and I still can't believe it is over.

I didn't really take to leaving school well and I was a bit overwhelmed by everything changing. Even though I thought I was prepared for it, I wasn't. After leaving school, the past few months have been some of the hardest of my life, it's definitely been really really difficult keeping a smile and keeping motivated, whilst feeling lost, worthless and stupid. It's been really tough and I still get stuck on it now to be honest, just because I feel a bit stuck. And frustrated with myself for not having the confidence to do certain things and that anxiety still has control of me.

I'm particularly grateful for the people who have been supportive and good to me.

Even though it's been a tough year there has been some moments where I've pushed on and got through things more easily or better than I first thought.

It's not all negative though, there's been good parts too!

I managed to produce a music video as part of my A Level media coursework, which I didn't really know I was capable of doing, and one of my other teachers seemed against music videos but my other media teacher encouraged me to challenge myself cos she believed I'd do a good job. I did the video to The Saturdays song 'Fall' using one of my friends as an actor and even though I do cringe at some parts of it, I am proud of what I made. I really took my time to plan it thoroughly and everything and I'm happy with it especially with my limited solo use of Adobe Premiere Pro (the programme used for editing). I did manage to get a B for it!

There's battles that have never been spoken of which I have begun to face this year. For example from February onwards I have managed to accomplish something which I never really felt I could do, it seemed impossible, but it was something I absolutely had to take control of.

Also, I managed to talk a bit more about anxiety to people around me, even my parents, although I'm not sure they really understand. Even though it doesn't feel like progress, it is certainly something which has progressed from keeping my mouth shut during earlier years.

My circle of bloggers and youtubers that I read and watch has also grown during 2015, with me becoming an avid fan of many other blogs and youtubers, which I will mention in a post coming sometime next week talking about 2015 favourites!)

I completed BlogTober in October 2015 which meant I wrote a blog post every single day of October. It was fun even though at times I was hoping my posts were enough! It is something I would definitely like to do again in 2016, but not a regular thing, I will probably either wait till October again for BlogTober or possibly do Blogmas instead! Either way, I would love to do another post-every-single-day-of-the-month sort of thing during 2016!

This also led to me doing my very first guest post for Kristina's blog, which I will link below. I wrote about how to be there for a friend with a mental illness and it has approx 311 views at the moment with comments so I am very chuffed that it got read. It was great being in Kristina's blog and it's made me realise that guest posts are something I'd like to do more of both in my own blog and for others! In terms of my blog, I have been very happy with the growing views of my blog and knowing that people are reading and hopefully enjoying my content makes me happy and hope that I can continue with that next year.

I also was featured on Chanelle Hayley's Meet the Blogger post during April, which was a great opportunity!
Here is the link if you wish to read it:

I had some great times with friends too (for example the quest for McDonalds with Emily) which I am really grateful for and some good conversations too which makes me very happy to think back on.

Beautywise, I now own my first ever MAC lipstick from this year. I got Rebel for Christmas and it is beautiful! I also experimented with false eyelashes a bit this year although not actually out, as I'm still not a pro yet, one of my friends is though so hopefully I can learn soon from her haha!

I suppose what I've learned from all of this is that I'm still here and 2016 is just around the corner. I really really need to be more positive and appreciative this year. I said this last year but it can be hard to follow.

I really want 2016 to be a happy, healthy year for me, I want to be able to gain control of myself again and accomplish things. I know 2016 will have its hard bits as I still have to decide whether to take a leap and do university, I just hope I have the strength to keep a smile on my face as 2015 really tested me. I just want to treat myself better this next year! I'd also love to take a push with my blog and continue writing and posting content.

I hope you all have a very Happy New Year and that 2016 is a happy, healthy and successful year for us all!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxx

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Strictly Come Dancing 2015 Finale

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Holly Jolly Christmas Tag

Hi everyone! 

So I noticed that the absolutely lovely Chanelle did this tag and I had been trying to find a Christmas tag to do as I did the main one last year, however this features different questions! I thought I would complete it! Please check out Chanelle's post and be sure to follow her blog! It's definitely one of my favourites!

1. Do you start your Christmas shopping on Black Friday or wait until last minute?
I'm quite a mixed person for Christmas shopping. Sometimes I will be organised and start thinking in October/November, sometimes it comes quite late. I often have a few ideas in my mind about what to buy someone but then not buy them until a few weeks later!

2. If you could be in any Christmas movie what would it be?
I would say either Love Actually because there are some cute storylines in that film, or Arthur Christmas because I honestly love Arthur as a character. He is such a sweetheart and the elves would be fun too!

3. Which do you like better: Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?
If you had asked me this when I was younger I would say Christmas Day, but these days I think Christmas Eve because it's a really exciting day and it's the last day where you can be majorly festive before the actual event itself.

4. When does your family put up their Christmas tree and who decorates it?
We usually put it up the first week of December and it is usually me and my mum who decorate it. When my brother was at home, he would do it too, but these days it is just me and my mum decorating it and we put Christmas music on in the background.

5. White lights or coloured lights?
We have coloured lights on our tree but I honestly think it's completely up to you, white lights can have a really classy effect but it is totally up to you and the general mood of your room.

6. Are you guilty of peeking at your presents or do you like to be surprised?
I like to pick the presents up and have a bit of a feel around and when I was younger I would be out of bed so early peeking at my pillowcase to see what had been brought.

7. Would you rather live in a gingerbread house or Santa’s workshop?
I was going to say Gingerbread house but then if I was thinking that if I was at Santa's workshop, someone could build me a gingerbread house and then I wouldn't have the issue of eating my own home and being technically homeless!

8. Tell us your Christmas Eve traditions.
I don't really have as many Christmas Eve traditions these days, but what I do like to do is watch The Snowman. It's one of my favourite all time Christmas films and I feel so nostalgic watching it and it is such a special movie to me.

9. If you could be under the mistletoe with anyone, who would it be?
Probably Ricky Norwood from Eastenders who is one of my favourite people ever. I find him so interesting and just brilliant. I have so much love for this guy! Or if I couldn't have Ricky, another one of my faves at the moment is Pasha Kovalev from Strictly Come Dancing. He is extremely pleasing to the eye...

10. What tops your tree?
A fairy!

I feel like that ended a bit abruptly, but never mind! I would love to see some of your answers so definitely tag me on Twitter EclairsCares and I will have a read!
I hope you are all in a very festive mood!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxx

Friday, 11 December 2015

Essential 5 Makeup Items For The Festive Season

Hi everyone!

Today's blog post is going to be 5 top makeup items for the Christmas and festive period.
Perfect for any celebrations or events you may have during Christmas!

* Red lip
My favourite red lips have been Rimmel's Lip Crayon in On Fire and also Clinique's Cherrypop Lipstick. Both are extremely moisturising on the lips and feel good as well as displaying a bright and beautiful red shade. Perfect for the Christmas season, red lip is definitely a staple!

* Colour Tattoos Eyeshadows
I say the Maybelline Colour Tattoos as I am a big fan of them but also because a lot of them are sparkly and glittery which is a definite must have for this festive season! There is also a variety of shades which you can pick up, and are easily blendable, what more could you need? I recommend On and On Bronze and Immortal Charcoal.

* Lip Liner 
A lip liner is a great item to have especially with red lips, I actually don't own one as of yet but I'm eyeing up one of the red shades I saw in Kiko and I've yet to purchase it! However lip liners are particularly useful at this time of year to stop the bright lip colours bleeding away from your lips. 

* Fake eyelashes
Fake eyelashes are the perfect bonus for your eyes and in particular this season where there are loads of social gatherings to attend. Make sure you practice before applying as you don't want it to go wrong as you're about to leave! Eyelure and Tanya Burr make great eyelashes, with Tanya Burr's being particularly light on the eye.

* Lip Balm
This is definitely a season where dry lips can occur and a good lip balm is definitely something to bear in mind! Palmers Cocoa Butter Lipbalm and Carmex Lipbalms are both great for this season as well as Nivea's extensive range. This is quite a heavy lip product filled post!

Do you have any essential makeup items for the festive season?
Let me know below in the comments!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxx

Monday, 7 December 2015

November 2015 Favourites

Hi everyone! Here are my November 2015 Favourites! I hope you enjoy reading this post and if you have liked anything from my list, over the past month, do let me know!

Let's begin!

Avon Pink Crush Lipstick
This lipstick has been a very faithful addition to my makeup collection a few years ago. I have recently been reaching for it a lot and it is a truly beautiful pink shade which is really easy to wear and suits a lot of skin tones. It is a gorgeous shade and although we have not had an Avon catalogue in a while, I hope it is still available!

Terry's Segsations
I have a slight chocolate obsession lately and in particular these tasty treats! They are so so nice and I cant recommend them enough!

Beauticology Gingerbread Body Wash
I have been quite into Gingerbread this month both the taste and the scent. this body wash smells so gingery and very seasonal. It's not the best body wash I've used but it's mainly the scent which I'm loving it for at the moment.

Vanessa White - Don't Wanna Be Your Lover
Vanessa. I've mentioned how I loved her last solo track 'Relationship Goals' and for me, I love this one more! It has some serious Aaliyah vibes and it's absolutely on point R&B sounds make it a winner for me. I'm really excited for what else there is to come for this fabulous lady and I just love her so much.

Ariana Grande - Focus
I am a huge fan of this song, even though I do feel it is similar to Problem but a less catchy version. I do love it however.

Fleur East - Sax
I knew Fleur was going to go on to things even whilst X Factor was on last year and this is everything her debut single could have been. On fire from start to finish! Her vocals and performance skills are insanely good!

KSI ft JME - Keep Up
Having only heard this in November and being aware of KSI, I did find myself loving this track. The heavy beats are my favourite part of this track and it even features vocals from rapper JME. Definitely one for the hiphop fans!

Basement Jaxx - Do Your Thing
I found myself listening to this song in like July/August but I don't think it ever got a mention on here. Now, I do believe because of Peter Andre's Charleston on Strictly Come Dancing, its come back in to my head again. An absolute tune.

I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here!
I've been hooked on I'm A Celeb this year particularly, it's such a crazy reality TV show where you have no idea what is going to happen. Ant and Dec are the best presenters and prove themselves to be just as entertaining as ever, it is too good. Seeing a load of celebrities finding their way in a jungle whilst competing the famous Bushtucker Trials is literally another thing which screams it's nearly Christmas!

The Apprentice
I am a big fan of the Apprentice and this series is full of all of the dramas. I'm not going to do spoilers but it's honestly such a great programme and one that I am a big fan of.

Thank you so much for reading this blog post!
Don't forget to follow my blog account on Twitter, @EclairsCares

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxxxx

Monday, 23 November 2015

Good Days and Bad Days

Hi everyone! I apologise that this blog is a day late, I had some Internet problems yesterday evening which meant that I couldn't post this.

However it is here now!

I've not really done a post focused or mentioning mental health in a while and I feel like I wish to speak of it again after quite an interesting contrast of days.
I visited one of my friends the other day who I'd not had a catchup with in ages and I really enjoyed it and it was so lovely seeing her and I generally felt so happy afterwards and enjoyed it but one thing which did deter me was the overwhelming amount of anxious feelings I had.

And then yesterday, I visited another friend who I'd not seen in a while and I was expecting to feel nervous as Mother Nature was giving me some 'lovely' cramps prior to the reunion and on one of the two buses I took (not that she lived like in a different city or anything I just had to take two)
But it was really weird because I had pretty much 0 anxious feelings throughout that whole time seeing her, even when I was travelling on the second bus and not knowing 100% where I was getting off as last time I'd gone to her house she'd been there and basically took me.
This time I got lost and wasn't sure where I was going which you'd think would set a bit of anxiety off but it didn't?
I'm not going to lie I did have like slight anxious thoughts but I didn't have the tipping of my stomach or the butterflies or anything which normally sets me off into a bad place.

It just leads me to say that it is true about having good days and bad days. Some days you will be able to do things and some days you will struggle. It can be quite irritating as if you agree to something in a good day where you've done and accomplished something and then struggle with whatever you've agreed to on the day, but it can be extremely uplifting when you do manage to do something.

I know sometimes I push and push to make myself do something anyway, if I know it will mean a lot to someone. That doesn't mean it's easy because it's not, I just have to somehow keep myself going.
Like the time All Time Low did a signing and my best friend has loved them for ages and she asked me to go with her and I knew I could not disappoint. However I was extremely ill that day, with an awful cold that in the first half of the day, left me with difficulty standing without feeling dizzy. And I knew I had to stand in a queue or however long for the signing. Because I felt ill, I was feeling very very anxious the whole day.
I had anxious feelings over the signing itself because I'd never been to one before and I knew there would be busy crowds and especially with how I'd been feeling earlier on in the day I had no idea how I was going to do it.

Still to this day, I don't really know how I managed to do it.
I was standing in the queue panicking but still stayed there and went and it was great, even though my throat was so sore by that point!

I think the reason I managed to do it was because I knew how much it meant to my friend and it would have honestly broken her if she'd not been able to go. That's the only thing I can think of as to how I did it because I still can't even believe I stayed considering how much of a state I was in with my cold and anxiousness. I tried not to let it show either as you can't really be in a negative mood when you're with your best friend about to meet her favourite band can you? And honestly, I really like All Time Low too, they were lovely and they even performed a few tracks too and it was pretty fantastic really!

And in terms of the last couple of days for me, I don't quite know how they were so different? But hey, I am quite happy with how I handled it.

So to sum this blog post up, I guess I'll say that it is okay to have good days and bad days, that is part of things. Do your best in whatever you are going through and always remember to take care of yourself. I think through the bad days you have to keep your focus that there will be other opportunities for good days and try and keep your spirits up. Have a hot chocolate, have a relaxing bath, listen to your favourite songs, do whatever you know will boost your mood in a positive way!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxx

Monday, 16 November 2015

Zoella Beauty Wonder Hand Review

Hey everyone!

Today I'm going to be reviewing Wonder Hand, the hand cream from Zoe Sugg aka Zoella's updated beauty range.

I didn't really know what to expect with the actual product, but I did fall in love very quickly.

I've mentioned before how much of a fan I am of the original Zoella Beauty collection scent, it is BEAUTIFUL. This handcream has the same scent which makes it smell beautiful too, the scent is surprisingly long lasting. It's not as strong to begin with as some other hand creams are, but I did watch Zoe's video where she talked about it and she said she deliberately hadn't made it too strong and overpowering. Saying that, the scent does last a while! Longer than I somewhat thought it would!

It also states it is enriched with Vitamin E, Shea Butter and Aloe Vera which is to leave the hands feeling silky and it certainly does make them feel very moisturised and silky after use.

It is extremely fast drying and not greasy, which is always a bonus as the worst thing after using a hand cream is having ridiculously greasy hands following application. This was not a problem for me which was a bonus!

In fact the only thing I don't like about Wonder Hand, is the lid. It is an octagon shape, meaning it is pointy which isn't the most comfortable lid to remove. But honestly, that is the only thing I dislike about the product, although I'd also maybe change the price to £3 too (it costs £5).

It is a great product indeed and a fab addition to Zoe's beauty range!

Do you own Wonder Hand? Let me know what you think!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxx

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Bubble Bath For Sensitive Skin

Hey everyone!

Today's post is going to be a post focused on a bubble bath that I am a huge fan of. As someone who enjoys bubbles in the tub, I feel that this is a great product for not only that, but creating a very calm and relaxing chilled out bath experience!

First things first, it is ideal for sensitive skin, which I myself have, I have to be careful on what I use in case it irritates, I mainly began using this as it was targeted for sensitive skin. It was a few years ago I had quite a bad reaction and I used this afterwards to ensure I was looking after my skin.

One of the things I love about this is that you don't even need a lot to get loads of bubbles, but you can definitely go all out if you want to.

It hasn't got a huge amount of scent to it when it is in the bath but there is enough scent to feel and smell fresh afterwards. It's a very simple scent and one which I think would appeal to a lot of people as it's not too 'in your face'. I find it to be a very relaxing scent and can definitely sooth you.

It is really moisturising which is great for keeping skin soft and hydrated! Sanex are a great and reliable brand which are dedicated to making great body products.

It's relatively cheap as well which makes it even more affordable and therefore better value.

This is a great Bubble Bath for people with sensitive skin and people who generally want a simple and fresh scent following their bath.

I hope you all enjoy this post and found it useful!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxx

Sunday, 8 November 2015

October 2015 Favourites

Hey everyone!!

Here are my October Favourites! A list of some of the things I really particularly loved during October 2015!

Zoella Beauty Blissful Mistful
I have been obsessed with this scent this month. I could have used the body lotion or hand cream, but I thought I'd choose the body mist. The scent of this is absolutely beautiful and has good staying power, despite being a body mist. The bottle is also gorgeous and photogenic.

Collection - Lasting Perfection Concealer
A little late on the bandwagon. Very very late on the bandwagon. But oh well! I knew I wanted to try a new concealer and I was torn between this and Rimmel's Wake Me Up Concealer, but I went for this. I'm so happy I did as it is honestly such a great concealer, it is certainly long-lasting and when patted down, has great results! I now understand why it was raved about for so long! Also apologies for the fact it has been in my bag and the writing has scratched off!

Rimmel Exaggerate Liquid Eyeliner
I decided to try a new liquid eyeliner and bought this one in August and have been particularly loving it lately. I feel it is gives great intensity and I am definitely a fan of it! I may do a full review on it but for now, let's just express how much I love it.

Unfortunately, I have lost my honeycomb at the moment so I can't take a photo (I promise I haven't eaten it all trust me!) and it also means I cannot finish the rest of it till I find it. I hope I find it soon! However, I'd never had honeycomb on its own until one of my best friends made me some one Christmas and it was so tasty! I decided to try some more and this is toffee flavoured which you can instantly tell, but it is so good! It's quite sticky and tough but honestly so nice!

Demi Lovato - Confident
I said I'd insert this into my Favourites again now the video is out and here it is! I think Demi looks absolutely stunning in the video and I feel it is such a powerful song and so catchy.

Flo Rida - My House 
I seem to enjoy a lot of Flo Rida's songs, I always feel like he puts out some great songs, with good beats and the right amount of catchiness! This song is no different and has been on repeat for a lot of the month!

Chris Brown - Zero
This song has a bit of an old school vibe to it, which I really like. It reminds me of 90s R&B with a modern twist and I really like it and feel it is underrated.

Ellie Goulding - On My Mind
I didn't immediately get hooked on this song but I've recently had it stuck in my head a lot and it lead to me listening to it a lot!

Eric Carmen - Hungry Eyes
I feel like I heard this song a lot during October so I felt it was very neccessary to put it into my Favourites this month.

Lily Allen - Our Time
I wasn't a huge fan of this when it was released, not sure why but I recently have grown to really love it. I am a fan of Lily's music and have been for quite a few years now and this is certainly true Lily style.

TLC - Come Get Some
I recently listened to this aging TLC track and forgot how much I loved it. It's easy to listen to and easy to love.

Little Mix ft T Boz - Red Planet
I was really loving Little Mix during October and this song in particular from their first album DNA. I love the way it's not the standard obvious girlband sort of song. It also features T Boz from TLC. It is such a good song and hopefully Little Mix perform it on their next tour.

Thank you so much for reading this blog post! Please let me know any of your October Favourites!
And don't forget to follow EclairsCares on Twitter!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Why Isolate?

Hi everyone!

So this post was sort of a product after I'd been thinking about recent weeks.
I've ultimately felt like 2015 has been quite a challenging year for me, in many ways but I'll not reflect on it all in this post, that will be saved for later!

I've recently realised how much I isolate myself sometimes in some situations and I think some of the reasons I do this is to either protect myself or the other person from pain but also from having to explain things.
I feel like I put myself in a little bubble sometimes and even though I talk about things, I hold back out of fear and I guess out of protection?

To a certain extent, I think we all need some alone time and time to be with just our own thoughts and generally ourselves. In the words of Queen B 'Me, Myself and I'.
However I think me and indeed those who suffer with hidden conditions sometimes feel as though they are isolating themselves for either similar reasons or something else.
Obviously when you've isolated yourself, nobody else knows what is happening and the problem is literally on your shoulders alone.
And you can feel although nobody cares when in fact they do they just aren't aware of what is troubling you!
So advice I can offer you is:
* Sometimes, the answer really is just to talk to someone! Even though it's tricky and if they don't understand, try and get them to see it from your point of view and just express yourself.
* Sometimes a walk with a friend can help lots, the exercise and fresh air will do you good whilst you chat!
* Write down things that make you happy about your life and go back to them. It can help in times of trouble! Also write down anything positive that your friends or family may have said about you. It can make a difference!
* If face to face heart to hearts make you anxious, try messaging a close friend, although best not to drop f bombs over text, if it's REALLY important and urgent, face to face is best!
* If you do need some alone time, put on some music and zone out for a bit. It may make you feel much better!

Isolation can be troublesome, but often there's a listening ear right in front of you and even though it feels difficult at first, starting gently can go a long way!

I am always hear to listen and always try to show others around me that if they need me, they can talk to me.
Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxx

Please catch up on my BlogTober posts if you missed any!

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

BlogTober 27: Why I Love The SacconeJolys

BlogTober Day 27:
This post is going to be about The SacconeJolys and why I love them so much.

If you haven't heard of them before, they are an Irish family living in the UK who make daily vlogs.
There is Jonathan and Anna who are married, with their 2 children Emilia and Eduardo and also the dogs Albi, Sina, Bianca, Theo, Nivea and Nuvola.

Earlier in the year I began watching their vlogs daily and I found it very refreshing and took my mind off a lot of things that were going on.
They are honestly so loveable, I feel that they all have such individual and interesting personalities which really shine through in the videos. You honestly can't sit back and watch a SacconeJoly video without smiling at least once throughout. I find their videos can instantly change my mood into a happy or positive one.

I think what makes them particularly loveable is that they have everyday life vlogs and it is just so cute to watch, Jonathan in particular makes you feel included and is very welcoming and seems like such a great guy.
Anna is really funny too and I feel she can be relatable as well as Inspirational. She pulls the most hilarious meme worthy facial expressions and is extremely likeable.

Emilia and Eduardo are definitely lucky to have such fab parents and are just as entertaining themselves Emilia has even began trying to blog herself in recent times.

for me, The SacconeJolys have honestly become one of my favourite youtubers particularly this year. I feel their video are a great escapism and perfect for chilling out to in the evening, catching up.

It is clear they put so much effort and care so much about their family and their viewers and aim to produce the best content whilst being great and amazing parents. I feel they do this well.

As well as the main family channel, Anna and Jonathan both have their own separate channels where they produce their own content aside from the family vlogs.
These are just as interesting and I feel it is great to see them sit down and talk about certain topics as well as day to day life family vlogging on the main channel.

I am very grateful I discovered the SacconeJolys, ultimately I have to thank Zoe for that if she hadn't have mentioned them began vlogging with them, I may never have discovered them.

if you havent already become a friendliest friend, you should go check them out on YouTube.

Also go follow this blog twitter @EclairsCares

Love and hugs
Claire xxxxxxx

Saturday, 24 October 2015

In Memory

Hi everyone!
Today's post is going to be in memory of a certain little pooch which unfortunately was taken from my life during February. She would have been 11 years old today and even though it has been just over 8 months since her passing, I still can't believe she isn't going to come wandering into the room on the hunt for whoever looks like they're eating something she fancies.

She was a little Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who belonged to my Auntie who passed away 2 years ago.
Because of my auntie's death, she had nowhere else to go and we kept her as we had treasured her loving yet cheeky personality over the years. She had such a hilarious personality and would always look for cats during her walks, always be there staring when you were eating something and always greet you with a lick whenever you entered the room.

Although she struggled with heart conditions, she still made the most out of life and had the personality and looks of a puppy, to which a lot of people around the neighbourhood agreed. Although the vet had warned us she could go very suddenly, due to her heart problems which were getting worse as she aged. 10 years is a lot for a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

However I could never have imagined or expected her death to be as traumatic as it was. It was already quite a difficult time for me as my mum wasn't very well. She was in hospital and even though it was a difficult time, on that particular day, I'd actually had quite a good time. I had been filming some shots for my music video Media Studies coursework with one of my best friends and we'd had a great time in the park getting some shots completed. When I got home later on, I began taking selfies with her, little did I know these would be the last photos I ever took with her, and the light wasn't on and I decided against using the flash, so the majority of the pictures are dark. It is quite eerie to look at those images now, as I was so unaware of what was coming.

After taking the selfies, she seemed to be interested in what was cooking in the kitchen, (roast chicken),  I went upstairs and was upstairs on my laptop, about to do my eyebrows. All of a sudden, I heard an ear-piercing scream. As she's a dog who frequently sneaked up on us and we've all accidentally nearly tripped over her or lightly caught one of her paws, I at first thought perhaps my dad had accidentally caught her. But the length of the scream and the pitch just seemed to increase that it seemed unlikely. I was thinking, what the hell is going on down there? It was then that my dad shouted up to me to help him out. I rushed down the stairs not quite knowing what I was going to find.
My dad was holding her up, as she was collapsing on the kitchen floor. A very horrific sight to have to see. We gently got her out of the hard kitchen floor and lay her on the soft carpet while my dad rang the vets and they said bring her straight in.
Not long after, she started having a fit, and I felt so helpless, stood there in floods of tears and heart racing, not knowing how on earth this could have happened, when just 15 minutes ago she was licking my face and being beside me in selfies.

Now we were on our way to the vets, stroking her paw to try and let her know I was still there, as her eyes looked quite startled and vague, it was just a horrible sight to remember and see and I just felt so sick and an absolute wreck. When we got to the vets, the Vet seemed to insist it was the right thing to do to put her down which was very difficult. I can't even put into words how awful it was. I don't really want to think about the rest as it was very painful and leaving the Vets without her was just sickening especially as she had been completely fine earlier today. I felt sick when I got home and I couldn't eat. The house felt so quiet without her.

It has been just over 8 months since she passed away, the house still feels quiet without her and it's certainly different adjusting to being without a dog in your life, even though she was only properly living with us for a year and a half, she brought so much personality and changed my life so much. She was a great distraction for when anxiety got bad, she was just always able to make me smile.

I do have some great memories of her however. And those memories and those photos and those videos are very precious. It's so strange as this is the first birthday of hers to pass since her death but I know I will always remember her and she will always be there in my heart and mind.

Love & hugs
Claire xxxx

Saturday, 10 October 2015

World Mental Health Day

Hi! As some of you may or may not know, today is World Mental Health Day. One in four adults and one in ten children are reportedly likely to suffer with a mental illness in any given year, according to And what's more, only a quarter of them are actually seeking professional help for it, which is quite scary when you think about it.

I definitely think more education is needed surrounding mental illness and I think it should definitely be understood more as I still believe although there has been vast improvements of education, there is still a lot of uncertainty and general difficulties with fully understanding mental illness. Although I do think that everyone's experiences are different, it is important to try and teach some vital signs of what to look out for so if you know someone suffering you can be there for them as best they can and they know they have you got support. Also, it is important to remember that everyone has different abilities and some people may find different things difficult. I think the hardest part for some people who don't have a mental illness is that they perhaps don't understand why tasks or situations cause stress or sadness to someone suffering, when they are perfectly capable to do it themselves. Like I said, we all have different abilities and if you don't understand why someone is struggling with a particular thing, don't make them feel a failure or incapable.

One of the worst feelings for someone suffering is that someone doesn't understand what they are going through. And it's tough. I try to live with an open mind and an open heart to such conditions, it's certainly something anxiety has taught me.

The main approach for this year is the subject of dignity and World Mental Health are tackling the issue by ensuring people share Fundamental Facts on social media, so that people with mental health problems still have dignity. This is something which I strongly believe. People with mental health conditions should not have to sacrifice or lose any of their dignity because of their illness. It simply should not happen. For many people, self-esteem or self-confidence can be difficult and if their dignity is under threat to it's even more difficult. It's easy to be unintentionally ignorant but by trying to understand the struggles or symptoms a person has, you can do your best to help their self-esteem pick up.

For more information visit:

If you have anything to add, please leave a comment below!

Thank you so much for reading this blog post!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxx

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Why Are Photos Important To Me?

Hi everyone!

So recently, one of my friends told me that I'd changed her feelings on photos and selfies.
It made me feel happy that I'd managed to change someone's mindset as now maybe they can take more photos themselves and capture their own memories.

It inspired me to make this blog post about why I think photos are really great and why they're important to me, in case some people just aren't on the same wavelength.

I first started using the Disposable Cameras before I got my first Digital Camera in 2008, there was always so much excitement upon receiving your photos back from the printers and seeing what you'd managed to capture, as obviously you couldn't see immediately what you'd taken, and let's just say, 7 year old Claire's camera skills weren't always the best...

The first ever disposable camera I used was on a primary school beach trip when I was probably about 5 or 6. Goodness knows why I was trusted with a camera but I cannot be more thankful and grateful that I had one with me, because I've got some proper cute little photos of me and one of my longest known and dearest friends! They are so so precious to me as photos as obviously back then, there was not an opportunity to take as many pictures as today and my friend actually left the UK in 2007 and I wouldn't have had any photos at all really besides them. Luckily, I've been able to see her since but like I'm saying, the photos are hugely important to me!

I've always been that friend that insists on taking a photo during a day trip or whatever but honestly, I just love the way you can look at a photo and think back to the memory or the time of your life when it was taken!

This is also important to me as I can have such a bad memory at times and photos are a great way to preserve a specific event or time in your life and I love that. I think it's so good and I'm really grateful for all of the photos I've taken and been able to get printed etc.

As for selfies, sometimes we just want to capture the way we look, am I right..???

I hope that this gives people more of an understanding as to why some of us just love taking photos and that we're not "vain" or anything like that - mate we just want to be able to properly cherish the people and the things around us such as views or surroundings so that even when they're not there anymore or they change, we can still see them exactly how they were!

Capture the moment forever!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Dealing With Comparisons

Hi everyone! I was inspired to write this blog post for a number of reasons. Lately, I've felt like I've bottled up a lot of what I've wanted to say and wanted to do. It's been a bit crap.

I know I'm not the only person guilty of this, but particularly recently I've been stuck on comparing myself to others. And it does no good.
When we're comparing ourselves we're literally only comparing to one particular thing. We're all different and we all have different strengths and different weaknesses and we've all had different struggles and generally different lives.
So how can we compare each other? I honestly don't know.
When you put it as blankly as that it sounds ridiculous but I know it's something that we get sidetracked worrying and thinking about.

It can drive you mad going around comparing yourself and negatively putting yourself down against others who are also doing the same. If we all focus on the good points about ourselves too as well as the good points about everyone else then that would lead us onto happier and mentally healthier lives.

Whilst researching this post, I discovered that the Guardian posted a report about the growing number of girls with low esteem. The report stated that the 'Girls Attitude Survey' said that 33% of women were not happy with their looks and its rose continually from the past two years.

Comparisons can honestly do more damage than good and it's vital for others to remember that everybody is different and we really all do have different stories and backgrounds and have different good points and bad points.

The best way I can think of to deal with this is make a list of all of the things which have been positive or that you're happy about with your life or your skills. Keep the list handy whenever you can feel a "compare-attack" coming on and keep it in your thoughts.

Another thing you can do is talk to a friend or parent or any loved one about your fears. Sometimes you just need a little reminder from someone who cares about you to keep you on the right track. I can guarantee they will have plenty of reasons as to why you're an amazing person and all of the key factors of what makes you a great person to hang around with/get the job etc.

If someone repeatedly puts pressure on you by comparing you to someone else in what can be seen as negatively, don't let it bring you down. We're all unique individuals and none of us are literally "the same" and we should definitely celebrate that. Just remember that you keep doing you and keep yourself happy and healthy.

We're all here to live separate journeys and if there's something which you aren't happy about with your life, do whatever you can to make things work and change it around.

If you're reading this and you can relate, do let me know in the comments! Thank you so much for reading and I just want to tell you know that no matter what you may sometimes tell yourself, YOU ARE an amazing person!!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 13 September 2015

August 2015 Favourites

Hi everyone!
So this is my August 2015 Favourites blog post! There's quite a few things to talk about, some of which were accidentally missed out of my last favourites post! Here we go!

Beyonce Heat Rush Perfume
I did a post about this last month and I expressed how much I loved it, that I had to include it in the favourites. It's got such a fresh, citrusy, summer scent and I've genuinely been using it so much and it's long lasting and keeps you smelling sweet and fresh!

Soap & Glory Righteous Butter
I reviewed this last year and I recently started using it a lot again and oh my god, it's truly a gift from the angels. It's so smooth and quick-drying and smells absolutely beautiful. I can't express how much I love this stuff. If I could I would include this in every single one of my favourites, I absolutely LOVE IT!!

Maybelline Colour Tattoo Timeless Black Eyeshadow
When I bought this, I literally bought it because it was less than a fiver and I love these eyeshadows and was sure I'd use it at some point. I recently used it alongside the On and On Bronze to create a bit of a smoky eye look for a meal I went to and it wasn't perfect but it was pretty good! If my makeup skills were a little better it would have been perfect! It created a very nice smoky effect and I thought I'd include it in the favourites post because I was just so happy with it.

Sainsburys Minion Cushion
This is a favourite that I forgot to mention last month too. For my holiday, I decided I needed a new travel cushion. And whilst in Sainsburys, I found the perfect one. A bright yellow minion one. It's so cute and so comfortable. Best of all it makes me smile every time I see it. It's just far too cute, am I right??

Shell Necklace
I bought this necklace whilst on holiday and I love it. Not sure if I've expressed my love for shells, but I really like them particularly in jewellery. I love a lot of beach related things! This shell necklace makes me feel really summery and reminds me of holidays and all things nice! It was really cheap too which was great! It's a little flower shape and I think it's adorable!

~photo coming soon~

Silento - Watch Me Whip
This has literally been my favourite song of August. It's just been so catchy and ahh I can't help it. I've almost mastered my whips and my nae naes so yes that's something which I can add to my CV... (jokes)

Major Lazor - Lean On
I totally forgot to include this in my June/July favourites, but this song has been a constant one in my life these past couple of months. I wasn't hugely big on it at first but it grew on me spectacularly and now I love it so much.

Lady Leshurr - Queen's Speech 4
I remember Lady Leshurr featuring on Vince Kidd's song Sick Love back in 2012, and this song is part of a collection of freestyle raps she has done. The music in this is so intense and honestly, Lady Leshurr is such an incredible, underrated and rapper. She has so much talent and her raps are so original and refreshing compared to other rappers and I hope she gets more recognition in the UK and the US to be honest. Queen's Speech 4 has definitely been on repeat this month!

Busted - Who's David
One of my best friends sent me this song on a day where I was feeling pretty shit and I realised how much I love it! Although as I said to my friend, the lyric "and i've got proof because the word's going around" annoys me because that doesn't mean it's proof - rumours???? Anyways besides that little disagreement I have with that lyric, it's literally one of my favourite Busted songs!

Abba - Voulez Vou
I mentioned last month I'd had a serious Abba phase during July and it was caused not only by hearing their songs a lot in public but the fact that Mamma Mia was on TV. And so I've generally been loving their songs a lot lately. I chose Voulez Vou to be in the favourites because it's one of my favourites of theirs, possibly joint with Dancing Queen, Take A Chance On Me and Gimme Gimme Gimme.

Jess Glynne - Don't Be So Hard On Yourself
This is Jess Glynne's 5th number one single and I'm so glad it reached #1. I find it to be such a motivational and upbeat song. It also brings back happy memories of hearing it in Topshop.

Felix Jaehn ft Jasmine - Ain't Nobody
I wasn't a huge fan of this when first hearing it, however it's recently grown on me quite a bit! I always think of Liberty X's song Being Nobody as they also shared the same sample, but this couldn't be further away from Liberty X's song to be honest. With it's soft gentle vocals and beats it's a great chilling out track.

Ella Eyre - Good Times 
I've got to admit, I've not really been a huge fan of some of Ella's other songs, I'm not quite sure why not, they're the sort of things I'd listen to, but for some reason they didn't really grab me as much as this song did. Not only does Ella look absolutely flawless in the video, it's so catchy and generally a great summer tune! Ella you've done good!!

Millions Sweets
I used to love Millions sweets back in like 2010 and had them all the time and then for some weird reason I stopped, I think I moved on to something else! However whilst out in Poundland, me and one of my best friends bought a 7 pack to share (there was actually 8 in there - bonus!) and I've really been enjoying them especially as I'd previously only tried a couple of the flavours! I got to try some of the newer ones! They are definitely a favourite!

Magnum Pink Raspberry
These have been a treat this summer, they taste so sweet against the chocolate and are so pretty as well. I've only really started having Magnums in the last year or so, but I do hope they bring this back next year and keep it!

Scott Mills Innuendo Bingo
I'm not even going to pretend like I haven't been binge watching loads of old games of Innuendo Bingo from the absolutely incredible Scott Mills of Radio 1. He is definitely my favourite Radio 1 DJ and this game is just perfect for me. Scott and Chris are the perfect double act and the game itself is genuinely brilliant.
Here's an episode for you to enjoy if you wish:

I hope you enjoyed this blog post! Please let me know in the comments some of your favourites from August!

Lots of love!
Claire xxxxxxxxxx

Friday, 4 September 2015

10 Reasons Why I Love Beyonce

Hi everybody! Slightly different post today, but seeing as the fabulous lady herself turns 34 today, I thought I would do a post dedicated to her as she is one of my favourite celebrities and notably, one of my favourite singers.

Here we have 10 Reasons Why I Love Beyonce!!

1: Her voice
I cannot get over Beyonce's voice. It is just truly dazzling, she seems to hardly ever hit messy notes and her vocal range is outstanding. She can do the highs the lows, the raps and the soft notes. I'm always absolutely so impressed when watching performances from her live as she really gives it her all and just sounds amazing every single time. It really is my dream to see her live as I'm sure it would be an absolutely incredible performance vocally.

2: Her dancing
If I was to see Beyonce live, another reason why it would be an amazing show would be her dancing and her overall performance. You can just feel how much she is giving it her all and just owns the stage. Not all these artists can do it, although clearly Beyonce can. She always seems to give everything she can to every performance and that really signifies a true performer.

3: Her femininity
Beyonce always aims to make us females feel good and empowered and always tries to teach people about equality and why it is important. I love the way she is always raising the game for females and generally motivating us all.

4: Her Versitality
Beyonce has the ability to sing in different music genres and her voice seems to suit any kind of song, she has the ability to be able to OWN any song she chooses to sing and that is an amazing quality and proves how much of an incredible singer she really is.

5: The way she changes up the game
Beyonce is a legend. It's all too obvious, she is iconic and one of the reasons she is so iconic is because she changes up the game. She released her entire album without any notice whatsoever and it managed to sell spectacularly well.

6: Her sassiness
I can't believe it's taken to number 6 before I mention her sassiness. Queen B is literally queen of sass and I love her for it.

7: Her music videos
Her music videos are always so well put together and always worth the watch! I can't decide on my favourite although I do have a huge spot for Crazy In Love, Single Ladies, Flaws and All and Pretty Hurts! Also the dance routines in the videos are on point!

8: Her quotes
Beyonce has made some pretty motivating and worthwhile quotes over the years and I just feel like some of the things she says are refreshing and help you to think more carefully about life and how you're living it.

9: Her fun personality
Beyonce seems to really lighten up wherever she is and when she released 711 in November 2014, it was another big example of how she can still make an epic song whilst letting loose and not taking things so seriously. She has the ability to do so and still be taken seriously as an artist and as a performer.

10: Her face/body
OK so I couldn't get away with a Beyonce related post without talking about how beautiful she is! She's one of my "girl crushes" and not only for me either I know that loads and loads and loads of people think Beyonce is gorgeous. Which she is. That woman is literally beyond stunning. She just looks good with any style. Need I say any more?

Wow. I could have gone on for ages but I thought 10 is a good number.
All my Beyonce fans please tell me any other things you love about Queen B :)!
I'd also love to know your favourite Beyonce songs, please comment and leave them below!

My favourite Beyonce songs would probably be Crazy In Love, Halo, 7/11, Love On Top, Single Ladies, Schoolin' Life, Pretty Hurts, Flaws & All, Work It Out, Flawless, Freakum Dress, If, Xo, Grown Woman. As you can see I can't pick just one hahaha!!!

Thank you so much for reading this post!
I hope you enjoyed it!

And before I end this post, Happy 34th Birthday Beyonce! Hope it's a wonderful one!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Beyonce Heat Rush Perfume Review

Hi there!

This blog post is going to be a review of the perfume Heat Rush by Beyonce.

This perfume as you can see screams summer just from the look of the bottle. It's orange shade immediately makes you think it's a summery scent (as well as the name obviously) and it does not disappoint!

It's a scent I've been constantly wearing this summer, which will more than definitely be in my August Favourites post. I'm not the best at describing scents, but to me it smells quite citrusy and fresh.

The description on Beyonce's official parfum website says:
"Beyoncé Heat Rush is a fruity floral fragrance that is luminous and vibrant with a dewy delicacy at the same time. It captures Beyoncé's bright sensuality; it's young, fresh, and joyful."

It also has a brief mention of the types of notes in the perfume itself which amongst a variety include Passionfruit, Blood Orange, Brazilian Cherry, Orange Hibiscus, Mango Blossom, Honey Amber.

In my opinion, this scent is absolutely perfect if you're looking for a fresh summery scent, even for after Summer is over and throughout September you want to continue smelling as sweet as summer! It's also really long-lasting as a couple of sprays can be good to go or you can continue to freshen up as the day goes on to enhance the scent more, depending on your preference or how hot the day is!

The bottle which I own has 30ml of product, which is a fair amount especially when there's other perfumes I need to get using aswell!

You can buy Beyonce Heat Rush at Boots and The Perfume Shop, as well as online at Amazon!

Thank you so much for reading this post and let me know if you have tried this gorgeous scent yourself!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 16 August 2015

June/July 2015 Favourites

Hi everybody!

I'm aware that I didn't do a June Favourites, mainly because I was really busy with exams and then Leavers Ball prep! And just generally everything!
So to make up for it, I'm doing a June/July favourites combined!! Admittedly, it's mainly just lip products and songs, but hey, let's get on with it!

Nivea Lip Butter:
This has been used so much by me over the last 2 months, it's such a good moisturising lip butter and doesn't have any colour or anything which is perfect to apply just before putting a lipstick on to ensure lips are moisturised and not dry! The packaging in my opinion is so cute too, perfect to throw in your bag!

Rimmel Asia Lipstick:
I'm probably going to do a proper post on this as I love it so much. This was the shade I wore to Leavers Ball and I'm just so so glad I bought it, it's one of my favourites of all time! It's great quality and is a nice shade!

Zoella Kissy Missy Lipbalm:
I bought this recently and oh my gosh. I love it. It became constantly used whilst being on holiday as lipbalms/lip crayons have a nicer consistency in the hot weather. I did a full review of the product here if you would like to read it:

Rimmel Colour Rush LipBalm: Give Me A Cuddle:
Another lip crayon which has been super handy in the warm(ish) weather we've had lately, this gorgeous pink shade has been good to sweep on before leaving the house and also leaves my lips not only moisturised but a gorgeous colour! I know mine has unfortunately spent too much time in my bag and the name has scratched off!

Pharrell Williams - Freedom
I first heard Pharrell's performance of this on a televised showing of his Glastonbury performance, and was really excited to hear the actual version. It's quickly become one of those songs I replay again and again and listen to multiple times during the day! It's addictive.

Beyonce - Crazy In Love
Yes, I know it's old. And yes it's one of my all time favourite songs. But I couldn't not mention it in my favourites this month, as it has been a prominent part of this month! One of my favourites memories was dancing to it not once but twice at Leavers Ball (don't know why it played twice but not complaining!!) with my friends and just being in my element. It brings back funny memories as just as I'd gone to get a drink it played the second time and one of my friends ran off to find me as the rest of them were waiting for me hahaha! Also, in Eastenders, Fatboy was DJing and playing Crazy In Love at Les and Pam's Centenary. Which is combining two favourites.

Flo Rida ft Robin Thicke - I Don't Like It, I Love It
This song makes me feel emotional, I think it's because it played at Leavers Ball and I have emotional memories of dancing and attempting to get my friends to get up to dance while this song was playing. Also I'm usually a fan of Flo Rida's work, I don't know what it is, he just makes genuinely good catchy pop/R&B. This is no different and another catchy track with a chorus sung by Robin Thicke.

Kanye West - All Day
I remember hearing this first at the BRITs 2015 and not really hearing much of it due to the amount that was silenced. However, I've recently been listening to it a lot lately and have grown to like it a lot more!

The Weeknd - Can't Feel My Face: 
I seem to be getting obsessed with the Weeknd lately and I was talking to one of my friends about how "sexy" his voice is. I'm really loving his music at the moment and this just gets stuck in my head and I burst into it at random moments.

John Newman - Come & Get It
And so this is another song that I have a tendency to replay and replay. It's SO CATCHY! And I can't think of anything bad to say about this song.

5 Seconds Of Summer - She's Kinda Hot
This song truly surprised me. I wasn't expecting to become such a fan of it, but I honestly love it so much. From the title, everything was a surprise to me when I heard the actual song. It's more 'rockier' than their other releases but I find it extremely catchy and the music in it puts me in such a good mood. Love it! My favourite lyric is 'When you've got bigger plans that no-one else understands you've got a shot though' and I've got a blog post on it coming up potentially soon!

Nothing But Thieves- Tripswitch
I heard this whilst away on holiday and loved it so much. I'm not sure how it's done in the charts but it deserves to be quite high, it's different to a lot of the stuff out at the moment and very catchy. I'm a big fan of this!

Avicii - Waiting For Love
I went through a major Avicii phase during July and this being released at the time was one of the songs that set me off. I'm a sucker for dance music, amongst other kinds and at first listen I wasn't majorly grabbed but I've recently been listening to it loads and definitely love it now!

The B52's - Loveshack
I wasn't going to add this in here because it wasn't a "favourite" it's more of a song which brings back happy memories of Leavers Ball. Me and my friend were 'slightly' tipsy whilst this played and it just brings back good memories.

Queen - Don't Stop Me Now
Another song which brings back amazing memories of when all of my friends were on the dancefloor at Leavers Ball all in a little circle and we were singing along and dancing to this. Just so many good memories and I've been listening to quite a few Queen tracks lately!

Thank you for reading this slightly delayed June/July favourites! I'm very sorry it was delayed but there has been a lot going on at the moment and I had to gather all the photos and whittle down the song list to a reasonable amount (there was a lot more, I seem to be loving a lot of songs at the moment)

I'd love to read any of your favourites!

Thanks again for reading! I appreciate it!

Love & hugs
Claire xxxxxxxxxxxxxx