Monday, 22 August 2016

UNBOXING: COHORTED's August BEAUTY BOX

I must admit that I've fallen in love with Cohorted's monthly beauty deliveries. I have reviewed two of their previous boxes and so far I haven't been disappointed at all. I've been discovering new brands but also new products from companies I already loved. 

I definitely used to think that subscribing to beauty boxes was a bit of a waste of money, since you never know what you get. I'd just rather buy something monthly that I love, than receive random items, but since so far I adored all of the samples, I definitely start to see the allure of receiving mystery products, it's like Christmas all the time!  


BOX VALUE: £118.00 

Let's dive in and see what you get in the August box then!


NARS Andy Warhol Eyeshadow Palette - Flowers 3 

This is the first thing that caught my eye as I don't own many Nars products at all and their packaging is the best. I recently reviewed the brand's Velvet Matte Skin Tint (here) but that's it, I really need to expand my collection! I was so glad to get this as the inside looks like a real piece of art, I was almost scared of using it. The colours are very wearable though and my first impressions so far are that the eyeshadows perform well but are quite sheer when you first apply them so you need to build them up a little if you're used to mad pop of colour. I actually didn't mind this type of consistency as it's very day-friendly. 





I've seen Anna from Vivianna Does Makeup rave about this nail polish brand a lot on her blog and YouTube channel, but I never purchased any sample as I have been pretty loyal to Orly recently. I was SO happy to receive it in this month's box though as it's supposed to be a magnificent product - and the packing screams Luxe to me. 
This is the shade Regret The Moon and after using it only once I can already tell you that one coat does it all and the shine level beats my old gel nails. 


NUNZIO SAVIANO ANTI-FRIZZ SHEETS 

Now this box of goodness is exactly what I needed. I suffer from frizzy hair most of the year and recently I've been struggling with keeping my mane looking nice for internship interviews and nights out. I love the fact that the sheets are all individually packaged, and that you know exactly how much you need to apply on your hair, without overdoing it. Good for both straight and curly hair not to mention it contains coconut oil that has moisturising properties and leaves a healthy shine. I carry a sheet in my purse daily now!




COHORTED Ovali Brush 

Unless you've been living under a rock, you would have seen the latest boom in the beauty industry aka a fancy little alternative to the classic makeup brushes that offers a new and innovative approach. 
This is from Cohorted's own brand and it is coming soon, together with a whole other 9 different brushes for eye and face application. 
I've been travelling and moving around a lot recently so I haven't had a chance to properly test this yet, but let me know in the comments if you're interested in a review. 


LANCOME Precious Cells Eye Cream 

In the box we get two 3ml samples that are enough to use for a while as you seriously need the smallest amount to apply around your eyes. I actually ran out of eye cream last week so this was a great addition to my skincare routine. Results? So far so good, the little lines that started appearing under my eyes have shown clear sign of giving up and disappearing again, so this product goes in my good books for now. 


Has anything caught your eye in this month's Cohorted beauty box? Let me know in the comments if you tested any of these products already or if something is in your wishlist now.  




Friday, 19 August 2016

How to Juggle University and Blogging


So ever since I mentioned doing more university/student life-themed posts on here, I have been receiving some questions here and there on social media about different aspects of my experience as a full time student and blogger. One of the most frequent questions I get asked from fellow bloggers but also pals is "how do you do it all?" as I also had a job on the side and juggled a few internships. 


Truth is, looking back at it now, I can't believe I managed it all but with a mix of organisation, patience and setting goals I did it, so anyone can! Here are a few tips I would give myself if I was to do this all over again. 


- Write up a plan 

What do you want to do and achieve? Once the academic year starts, you're going to be very busy but I also think that sometimes we make things out to be worst than they are. In my case, especially on my final year, I was going in with the mentality of having 'no life' for the next however many months when really, I had time to do it all, all I needed was the effort. Once you get your timetable it might take a couple of weeks to get used to the new routine but there will be plenty of time to organise your life around it. I'm a firm believer that being busy makes you a more efficient person. 

- Be realistic 

I mean, you can do it all but also take in consideration the fact that you can't plan life because it won't all go the way you want it to. You can do 3 sports, blog and go to uni, but will you have any time for yourself to just chill? How do you want to use that time? The last thing you want to do is overwork yourself to the point that you want to cry. Trust me, I went there, done that, and picking yourself up from that dark hole takes a lot of energy. We can all have down days where it seems that the workload is piling up and that you're behind, but unless you leave it to the last second, you will manage to complete it all. 

- Use gap hours to your advantage 

I see way too many people doing nothing on gap hours, especially if they "only have 60 minutes". Mate, one hour makes a massive difference. I always tried to maximise the time I had so even if it's just answering blog emails, scheduling tweets, using Instagram and in the mid time have lunch as well, that would give me a push and more time to do other things later. Yes, having a three-hour train of free periods sucks to some extent as you're stuck in the building but why not get yourself ahead? At the same time though, if you planned on doing work later on, and you just wanna chill, there's nothing wrong with that, grab a cup of coffee, have a walk through town and free your mind from stress - just remember to actually do the work later! 

- Write big and small to-do lists and use planners

This has literally saved me. I can be a very anxious person and feel easily overwhelmed by work, but the way I handled it is by splitting tasks through the week - or the month. I used a planner to mark deadlines and remind myself weekly to do a little bit of work on every subject. I would put on the side half an hour every day to reply to emails "officially", plus any extra time at the bus station or waiting for my Deliveroo order to come would be used to plan an upcoming post or organise when to do a shoot. 
Most of my internships were remote or unpaid so the companies were flexible with me in terms of work hours. I would also make a point of not doing more than one or two internships per semester depending on workload as obviously I had a million other things to do so don't bite more than you can chew
With coursework, I would do research one week, note taking the other and by the third week I was already writing up my essay, and scheduling with my lecturers when to have my work checked or asking any questions. I used tools such as Bamboo * to transfer notes or reminders (from paper to phone or tablet or laptop) and take them with me when I needed to revise or to go back to a certain point without needing to turn my desk upside down looking through papers (I am a little messy with my binders). It's essential to invest on things that will make your life easier, and in this case Bamboo helped with me with that. Now that I'm done with uni I still use it for blog post ideas and general organisational day to day tasks, so it's not something that stops being useful. 

- Surround yourself with the right people

I always say "better alone than in bad company" when it comes to friendships. You don't need to cut people out of your life if that's not your style, but recognising who's not supportive or a good influence is essential. As a university student, it is especially important to realise who's lazy and doesn't want to do well, and not let yourself be dragged down. I still liked hanging out with people who barely showed their faces to class because they're fun and you can unwind with them, but I also had to draw a line and had to say "no" to parties, drinks and 3am calls when I was focusing on deadlines. It is costing you money and time to be at uni so make the most of it but also be responsible. (I sound like my mum...) 
On my final year I solidified a bond with my pal Faith and she was hands down the best motivator and workaholic I know, also always supporting me with my blog. There was like a quiet competition on who was getting work done first, and we were always there to lift each other up, applying for internships together and drinking wine when we did well. This is how it should be. 

- Find what work-method suits you

I always take all of my photos on a Sunday morning for example, and then spread the editing and writing up the posts on other days. Also, I don't have a set schedule. I honestly can't remember when my favourite bloggers claim to post, I just check their sites when I have free time or when I see them promoting new content. Will people really care if you "miss" a Tuesday post? Can't you upload it two days later? I just make sure I post "twice a week" but if I don't feel like it, I don't post anything and vice versa, some weeks I'll publish something almost every day. Promote old posts, do a life update, or work on quality over quantity. 

- Keep in mind what are your priorities 

Make a list top to bottom of the priorities you have. For me it was good grades, my relationships with family/boyfriend/friends, blog, internships and then work. If I was asked to do more hours on certain weeks when I was too busy with deadlines, I would turn down these hours for example. This didn't happen often at all, maybe once in the whole year but learn to say NO when you have to. I will admit I skipped class sometimes to catch up on work from home and then meet with someone, but that's because I always made sure I was ahead enough to be able to bend the 'rules' a little. I don't believe you need to attend every lecture and the only reason I was showing up to most was mainly because my university records attendance. However lecturers knew I was doing work and as long as I was using time off wisely that's all that mattered. 

- Give yourself less time than you actually have 

Okay, some of my friends think I'm a little crazy for doing this but usually if a deadline is say, the 15th of May, I would make damn sure I'm done with it two weeks ahead. That's always been a rule of mine as I never know if I'll get sick, be uninspired, or if I have to change massive chunks of essays or revise more because I missed on something. Give yourself less time, so that you can actually have more time to do it. If I wasn't already almost done with a deadline a month before the actual due date, I would literally freak out but I never allowed myself to do work the night before. In fact I can proudly say that the last time I finished a piece of work the day before the actual deadline was on my first year at college and man, I almost had a nervous breakdown...never again! 




These are my top tips on juggling uni and blogging but I'd love to know how you did it/are doing it if you're a student. Unless blogging is your job, don't pressure yourself to post daily, use it instead as un outlet to relax and distract you from the stress of uni-work and revision. If you force yourself, you will stop enjoying it. And if you're starting university in September - Good luck on your next great adventure! 


Tuesday, 16 August 2016

The Body Shop "Down To Earth" Collection


It's been a while since I talked about eyeshadow palettes around here and what better way to bring this topic up again than feature the latest neutrals on the market?! Finally The Body Shop joined in, producing not one, not two but six options for all the eyeshadow lovers out there. From greys to plums, you can satisfy your soul with quads or a proper palette. 

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Why Leaving Your Comfort Zone is A Great Challenge




In one of my most recent posts I was telling you a few of my "style rules" and how I do follow them religiously in order to always look put together. In one of the little paragraphs I mentioned finding your style and sticking to it, even if it's basics like leather jacket and t-shirt + jeans. That's pretty much my uniform, but one thing that I missed out on mentioning though, is that I still like to try something new. 

Whether it's in fashion or in real life, I always make it a personal challenge of mine to go out of my comfort zone at least once a month. It doesn't have to be anything 'wild', but it's good to push yourself regularly and get comfortable in different situations. 

Last month for example, I attended a lot of blogging events on my own. This may sound like a piece of cake to most, but as I'm pretty shy and introvert, I was patting myself on the shoulder on the train home like "yeah girl, you did it!"because it can be intimidating being in a room with people who do the same thing, quite possibly better, and trying to keep your head above water. 

This month Boohoo contacted me and they wanted to send me a random dress to style. At first I was jumping around my room as I bloody love this brand, but then terror and panic surfaced as I knew it was not going to be a black dress or possibly anything black at all. They wanted to challenge me to wear something different and out of my comfort, so of course here comes the metallic dress

Metallics have been a trend I haven't really explored as they lean more towards maximalism and statement, rather than minimalism which is my thing. I do like it though, and sometimes seeing flashy shoes or dresses makes me want to try them. I wanted to style this dress that isn't me, in a way that is me, so that I could happily walk in it all day and not feel weird. 





Of course I decided to go with a leather jacket as on this particular day it was quite breezy and in the shade you could easily feel a little cold. I had this jacket for 10 years actually and it's honestly one of the best purchases ever! 

On my feet I'm, as always, rocking something from Topshop. I have a thing for these peep toe sandals as the heel makes them super comfy to wear every day. 

Last but certainly not least is my new bag, a dreamy Chanel WOC in caviar leather that I will review soon. You may have spotted it on my Snapchat (WhatKrisDid) last week. This is my graduation present and I'm SO happy to finally have it. It's a dream come true, thanks Mama Cupcake. 

Honestly it felt great wearing this dress. So many of my friends made comments like "wow, this is different but you rock it" and it's certainly a number people will notice. You can easily take the look day to night as well which is something I love.

Thanks Boohoo for challenging me and I'd like to know if you guys leave your comfort zone often and how! Let me know in the comments. 









Dress - Boohoo 
Shoes - Topshop 
Bag - Chanel WOC 
Jacket - Vintage (similar here)

Shop the dress by clicking on the little image below!





Monday, 8 August 2016

5 Reasons Why I Love Living By The Sea


As some of you may or may not know, I was born in Milan. Most of my life I lived in big cities, but for the past 6 years I've been based in England, with the sea visible right outside my window. As I recently finished university, I realised that in order to do what I like I'm going to have to move to London, which is partly exciting but also heartbreaking. Some people totally get it, but others recently asked me "why? why is it a big deal? why do you like living by the sea so much?". The list could be infinite but here's my top five reasons: 

- It saved me from my asthma
I've had asthma since I was a little kid and for years my doctors said that living in a big polluted city was never going to help me heal. Apparently the tissue of my lungs was grey (bit gross), and not red as Milan's air was so bad. My family has always been very careful and every Christmas, Easter and summer break I would go on holiday somewhere near the sea to 'recover', and only now as an adult I realised how blessed and lucky I was to be able to go on such long breaks from the city. Ever since I moved here, my lungs have completely healed. Last year I went to get them checked by my old doctor and she said they sounded great and there was no 'squeaks' or weird noises to signal struggle in my breathing as I once had. 

- It helps me with my anxiety

I'm not quite sure what it is about it but if I feel stressed, overwhelmed, sad or anything negative in general, a walk by the sea really clears my mind and my spirit. There's no cars, not that many people if you choose the right time, and you're just there on your own recharging and having time to think. It's very liberating and relaxing so by the time you go back home, your mind is clear. 

- It keeps me fit. 

I've been a little lazy this past month but usually I walk by the beach almost daily for an hour or two and I manage to keep myself relatively fit. Wether is walking, power walking or jogging, I love it. There's other people doing the same and you're just in the zone. Even if you forget your headphones it's okay because the sound of the waves makes you chill. 

- It's the best place for socialising

BBQs, drinks, dog walks, you name it and you can do it. There's even different little festivals going on through summer and you can enjoy watching acrobats or fire eaters practicing their thing. I find the beach to be a great location for socialising with pals and catching a light tan. My boyfriend and I love going even for a little fire in the evening. It's affordable and always fun. 

- It inspires me

Now, this might sound a little weird but I genuinely feel like the sea gives me a little boost of energy and inspiration to succeed. I look at the sea and I feel like Jack Sparrow, no limits, no grounds, it's just you and whatever you can do to live the dream. Whilst being calming it can also turn on a little switch inside that occasionally gets turned off, and I definitely feel like going back home and getting sh*t done. I also always imagine to just get on a ship one day and sail away somewhere to explore the world. 





Bag - Pia Rossini (My go-to bag for the beach)
Shirt Dress - ASOS

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Nars Velvet Skin Tint - A Quick Review


Yes, I'm a little late to the game when it comes to this new foundation but I wanted to let the hype die down a little before I decided to purchase it. I wanted to have a neutral view and test it properly for a few weeks before telling you guys my thoughts on it, as I have done in the past with a few other foundations. 

This is actually my first Nars base as in the past I wasn't able to find a good match for my skin tone since I seem to be in between shades. Many sales assistant jokingly said I should buy both shades and mix them up to form the perfect one, but there was no way I could splash out so much money when I knew that with other brands I was able to achieve the same result with half the price. 

There was something though, with this foundation, that called my name. The packaging, the consistency..I just wanted to test it so bad. Eventually, a month ago I decided to go for it and I came home with my own Velvet Skin Tint so here's my two cents.

Price: £30 
My Shade: Groenland
Packaging: I love it. It's perfect for travel as it's light and you can squeeze out the product so you get complete control on how much you want to use. It's also sleek looking which is a bonus. 
Application: I have tried applying it with fingers and with a brush but the best results come with a beauty blender/sponge in general. I suggest working it in small quantities to give the skin enough time to settle it before adding layers. It gives a custom coverage so you can rock it light but you can also build it to an almost full-coverage base. I double it up on me as I like the flawless look, but I can definitely still see the skin underneath and it doesn't look cakey. 
Staying Power: I would say 5 hours with great staying power and afterwards it starts showing oils so you'll need to blot/powder for sure. Keep in mind I have oily skin. It's worth noting that it's not a transfer proof foundation so careful if you wear white clothes etc as it will transfer. The bronzer and blush are still visible by the end of the day by the way, which is great!
Final Thoughts: I like it a lot. It's perfect for day to day use but I wouldn't go for it if I had a special event as I like heavier foundations that are not easily rubbed off. I would suggest using a setting spray or a powder if you have oily skin like me, just to prolong the staying power. 

FINAL SCORE: 8/10 







Wednesday, 3 August 2016

10 Basic Style Rules I Live By



I'm by no means a styling expert but through the years I learnt a thing or two about what looks good on me and how in some way I can always look put together even when I'm running 10 minutes late. 

I realised that if I feel uncomfortable in my clothes, I probably look so as well, and as much as I try and experiment every once in a while, I also try my best to stay focused on comfort and rock what I have.

Today I thought it would be good to share 10 of the best tips I've been told or learnt along the way. Yes, some are super basic, but because they're so logic I do believe that we tend to overlook them or forget about them easily. 


1 - If it doesn't fit, get over it and let it go. As a teen especially, I would buy anything that my favourite actress or singer wore without taking in consideration my body shape and oh my.. the results were pretty bad at times. Thank goodness I didn't have a blog back then. 

2 - There's nothing wrong/boring with having a signature look. Me? I like black skinny jeans, plain t-shirts and a leather jacket. Is it ground breaking? Nope. Do I feel good wearing it? Yes. I wear this combination almost daily during summer, and in winter I just switch it up to chunky jumpers. No shame. 

3 - It's good to invest in accessories. I'm now a firm believer that spending more on shoes and bags is a great strategy to elevate your look and save your money in the long term. I'm more into bags than shoes but I do spend at least £50 on real leather boots from brands like Topshop because they can last years and look good. 

4 - Take care of your leather goods. Going from the last point, if you're already spending more money on certain items, take good care of them. Store your leather jackets well and clean/condition your boots often to keep them looking awesome. I also use protective sprays on bags to avoid rain stains. 

5 - Clean out your closet - regularly. I will admit I'm a little rubbish at this but I try to improve each year. Don't keep stuff you don't wear or not love anymore - sell, donate, give to friends! 

6 - Don't buy smaller sizes to 'inspire you' to lose weight. Come on, we've all done it at some point, I know I did. Was it a good idea? No. Most of those jeans or dresses just ended up gathering dust in my closet and being forgotten about. 

7 - Don't waste too much on trendy pieces. They're just trends and in a couple of years or so, they will be forgotten because something new and exciting will take over. I love bardot tops but I will not spend more than £30 to a top like that. 

8 -  Only wear heels if you can walk in them. Especially during the day and at work, do you really want to make a fool of yourself? High heels can definitely give you a feeling of power and they can make you look professional and classy but you need to know how to walk in them properly. I can clearly recall an accident at a previous job where my boss fell down the stairs because her new Prada heels were too much for her. Awkward (and kind of funny). 

9 - Iron things to look more presentable. Man, it makes a difference. I hate ironing shirts but you're not gonna look cool in any shape or form if you show up to work with a top with lines and creases everywhere. It says a lot about you and your level of effort. 

10 - If in doubt, over dress. You may have seen in my previous post "what I wear when I don't know what to wear", that I like LBDs. Have a few in your closet as they'll save you more times than you expect. 






T-shirt and bra - Brandy Melville (amazing affordable alternative HERE)
Jeans - Topshop
Bag (preloved) - Balenciaga from HERE 
Shoes - Victoria* (alternative pair HERE if you don't like the croc detail) 



I'd love to know what 'rules' you apply daily to your style-life and if you agree with any of my points. 

The photos above are the outfit that I've been wearing several times last month to work and on different trips to London. I'm obsessed with deep V-neck t-shirts! 

Have a fabulous day. X 

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