You may be going ewww at the title of this post - salt and vinegar may be nice on chips but on your face?! I assure you, this homemade toner will make your skin super soft, soothe and calm it, improve your overall complexion and may even reduce redness, acne and scarring. Well, that's how it has helped me anyway.
And if you're worrying you will smell like the chippy down the road - don't. The scent fades straight away and actually just smells like tasty apples.

What you will need

I discovered apple cider vinegar about a year ago and have tried some of its multiple uses out, with mixed results. Many believe it is a miracle product: it can be used for cleaning, skincare, weight loss and even to relieve muscle pain. For detailed information, check out this article by Brittany Mullins. For a more clinical approach I suggest you click here.
When buying apple cider vinegar, it is important to get the type with the 'mother' as this is what makes it beneficial for us. The 'mother' settles at the bottom of the bottle when unmixed, and is made of living nutrients and bacteria.


Sea salt is preferable over table salt basically because the processing of table salt found in mines removes all the nutrients and minerals found in sea salt. Again, for a much more scientific insight looky here. 
Sea salt is good for your skin because of the abundance of minerals it contains such as magnesium and calcium. It has therapeutic effects and can calm down skin problems such as eczema - just tip a handful or two into your bath and let the magic happen. It's also a good exfoliant but is more harsh than sugar. This toner allows you to get the benefits from sea salt without damaging your delicate skin re exfoliating.

Directions

I suggest starting out with a 1:1 ratio of apple cider vinegar and water to see how your skin reacts. You should never apply undiluted apple cider vinegar because it is very acidic and could damage your skin.
  1. Fill the bottle by about 80% with the apple cider vinegar and water mixture. 
  2. Insert roughly two teaspoons of sea salt and shake well until the salt has dissolved. 
I don't measure the salt with a teaspoon so this is an estimate, but an educated one.

The mixture is now ready! All you need is a few drops on a cotton pad. Apply this to problem areas (I pretty much cover my whole face). Avoid the delicate eye area and lips as it will sting! The mixture may also sting open wounds so avoid these as much as you can.

I apply before bed and while you may notice results overnight I find this provides a gradual yet definitely noticeable effect. If you find it drying, skip it a night or two and apply moisturiser afterwards.
Store the toner in a cool and dry place. I keep mine next to my other DIY skincare products... coming soon to the blog.
I hope this toner works for you if you give it a try! Do let me know in the comments and if you have any questions just ask - this is my first step-by-step guide so apologies if I missed anything out or was unclear!

DIY Salt and Vinegar Toner


Out of all my friends, I've always been the least interested in shoes. My collection peaked at around 5 pairs - including my slippers. However recently I've become intrigued - even excited - by shoes since experimenting with my outfits more! They really do have the power to change the mood of a look and heels provide me with the few extra inches I need to be the same height as my tall male friends. Take that, Gav.

Although I am beginning to enjoy shoes instead of seeing them somewhat as a chore, I am a very frugal person. I can't imagine myself spending over say £30/40 on good footwear - unless I'm not the one paying that is (shoutout to my sister and her student loans for my Blowfish boots - love you both). I won't even buy Converse unless I reaaally like them (I've had two pairs) and real Uggs are out of the question (chocolate is much more important).

My rebellion against high priced shoes led me to - you guessed it - Primark. What better place for me to experiment with fun footwear? So, I finally present to you, a Primark shoe haul by someone who doesn't particularly like shoes:

Primark // £14
Black goes with everything, so it goes. I loved the open criss cross pattern, the silver stud detailing and also the big fat wedge. I prefer wearing a wedge heel over a tiny thin one - I think subconsciously it makes me feel safer and better balanced (however I still fall in them - practice makes perfect!)
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Primark // £12
It truly was love at first sight. The (again) wedge heels have a nautical feeling with the unique rope design on the wedge which I adore. The bold red makes the shoes a statement piece and I feel very classy wearing these shoes - perhaps a little vintage? To further the sailor theme, check out an outift I created with these shoes below:
Do you like it? The shorts were an impulse buy that I certainly do not regret!
Anyway...
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Primark // £6
Pink is my favourite colour. Pink can also be a very summery colour so when I saw these cute flats I just had to get them - and for only £6! The gold detail adds interest meaning I can wear them with casual outfits but also if I fancy dressing up a bit without wearing heels!
I would also like to note that in the taking of the second photo, an angry bee chased me away from it's territory and I was locked out of the house in my dressing gown. See what I do for this blog?! You're welcome.
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Overall, I am very pleased with my new purchases and can't wait to wear them to all the exclusive parties I have in the summer (hahahaha good one).
What's your opinion on shoes? Do you have a budget or am I being a party pooper? Let me know in the comments or on any of my social media accounts - I'd love to hear from you!

Primark Shoe Haul



You really can tell a lot about a person from their favourite beauty products. A bold red lipstick may suggest a confident character while packed-on bronzer could convey someone who worships the sun.
I like 'favourites' posts because you are guaranteed products with outstanding reviews, so if you're eager to find some new gems for your ever-growing collection, keep reading.

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£6.29
I am constantly looking for new and better mascaras, however this one has truly stood the test of time. It's key features are lengthening, definition and separation of the lashes. The formula is not too wet and not too dry and effortlessly manages to define my lashes and make them appear longer with no clumps. It also holds a mean curl and lasts all day without any smudging or budging! My favourite thing however is the curvature of the wand. It fits my eye shape perfectly and the thin wand means it is ideal for bottom lashes. This is definitely my go-to mascara for day and night however I will usually layer a volumising type over the top if I want WOW lashes as these provide a more natural, but still eye-catching look.

***


Blistex has three lip ranges: Cares, Rescues and Beautifies. I have tried and loved all of the Blistex Beautifies lip balms. This range features Lip Brilliance, Raspberry Lemonade Blast (which tastes AMAZING!) and MedPlus Cherry Berry as pictured. Lip Brilliance is my favourite lip balm of ALL TIME however I have lost it (oops) so will need to buy a new one ASAP before I get withdrawal symptoms. Blistex is a company truly dedicated to providing you with soft and beautiful lips - their products contain an abundance of vitamins and most have SPF too. You can find Blistex in Boots, Tesco and Superdrug. I highly recommend giving them a shot if you are looking for a new lip balm to try – you won’t be disappointed.

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£1 (I kid you not!)
Really? A basic brown eyeshadow is one of my favourite beauty products? Yes, really – hear me out! This little pot of perfection is a great multi-tasker and the perfect shade for my eyebrows. I like to use shadow for a soft look and it is also easy to blend out if I make a mistake (which I do, a lot). The problem I have is that brown shadows are often much too warm or red-toned for my hair but this gem is ideal. It’s ashy in hue without being grey and is buildable. I apply it with an angled eyeliner brush. In addition, I also use it as a crease colour, sometimes to tightline my eyes instead of using black and it can also be used for contouring around the nose area if I feel so inclined. For an astounding £1, you really can’t go wrong, so if you’ve been struggling to find a cool-toned eyebrow product – this is it.

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Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair 01:£4.19

The Collection Lasting Perfection concealer is well-known in the beauty world and this is why I initially bought it. I’ve now used up three tubes of Fair 01 which is the perfect shade for my ultra-pale complexion. It’s a dream to apply with excellent coverage and it does last all day. The doe-foot applicator also makes it easy to apply and then I just blend with my ring finger for a natural look. It’s affordable and lasts a long time in the tube, even if you use it on basically your whole face daily like I do.

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MUA Intense Kisses Lipglosses:£2

OMG. This range is my number one favourite beauty product ever. Like, ever. The glosses have fantastic pigmentation and last a long long time. The variety of shades is excellent, they smell/taste like sweet vanilla and they’re not too sticky either. All in all, a fab product which I can’t speak of highly enough. The pretty packaging wraps it up nicely and the extremely affordable price of £2 is the final justification making this a must-buy product.

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Well, we have reached the end of my 5 favourite beauty products - don't cry. Do we share any of the same favourites? If not, what is your ultimate beauty buy? I'd love to try it out!

Thanks for reading :)

My 5 Favourite Beauty Products

Saturday marked the annual Bathgate Galaday, a tradition dated back to 1844 in memory of John Newland's contribution to the building of Bathgate Academy.
Every year on the first Saturday of June, locals and not-locals (such as myself) gather to watch a spectacular parade including all sorts of creative floats and costumes, not forgetting the marching bands. Afterwards, entertainment is provided with Procession in the Park and also "the shows" - where you will find a multitude of helter skelters, carousels and dodgems! All in all, it's a great day out for the family and there are a few other related events such as the Torchlight procession. The candy-floss is pretty good too!
If you'd like to find out more about the fun event, just click here!
It was such a lovely sunny morning that I decided to dress appropriately! I felt a bit like an ice cream cone in fact - due to the colours, not the overall look...
The end result was a very feminine and I felt quirky outfit, with a few pops of pastel amongst the pretty neutrals. And woah - double denim!!! Well, if my shoes count anyway.
Top: Internacionale
// This was a gift from an Italian exchange student I hosted a couple of years ago - still fits!)

Jacket: New Look
// Depop - Chloe Davidson // £6 (roughly)

Skirt: New Look
// Depop - Chloe Davidson // £6 (roughly)

Leggings: H&M
// £7.99 in the sale - it was love at first sight.

Bag: A bag shop in Brussels, Belgium
// €15 // £12 (roughly)

Shoes: Unknown
// I got them online for £6.99 after googling "cheap shoes uk" and now can't find the website... oops!

Necklace: Accessorize
// £8 if I remember correctly (I probably haven't)

***

If you're wondering what Depop is, it's basically an app where people sell items - usually second-hand but not always. It's a bit like a simplified eBay. I have had no problems with it so far, but always make sure to check for reviews and feedback before buying from a particular seller! I highly recommend Chloe Davidson if you live in the UK - I bought both the jacket and skirt from her for £15 including shipping and I was very impressed with the incredibly fast and friendly service!
Of course, no summer outfit would be complete without a pair of dashing sunglasses!
Sunglasses: New Look
// £4.99 (what a bargain!)
Ring: Depop - Mackenzie Anne
// $10 // £5 (including shipping)
What did you think of my first "What I Wore" post? And what did you think of the outfit itself?! Have you got your summer wardrobe out already? I can't wait to wear more shorts and skirts instead of jeans all the time! Please stay Sun!!
Until next time,

What I Wore to the Bathgate Galaday



I always enjoy reading ‘get to know me’ posts so thought I would do one to introduce myself to you guys! I have picked out a mixture of 16 (my age – I’m so smart) ‘this or that' style questions relating to beauty, fashion and just life in general – I hope you enjoy!

1. Coffee or tea?
I actually dislike both except flavoured lattes (vanilla lattes are the way to my heart) and fruity herbal teas. But overall, I’d have to pick lattes as they are my guilty pleasure on a cold winter’s day!

2. Eyeliner or mascara?
Definitely mascara. I have very small eyelids so liquid eyeliner doesn’t look that great on me, however I do love tight lining with pencil or shadow but mascara, I mean, aw it’s just the best isn’t it?

3. Side-swept bangs or full bangs?
I love fringes on other people, but on me? No. I just hate having hair in my face. Kirby clips and I are indefinitely best friends. Also, just look at what I have subjected my hair to in the past and you will understand my trauma…

4. Hunting or fishing?
Quite random, I admit. However it’s time for a FUN FACT! How exciting! I do in fact practice archery and I really do love it, so much that I based my school art project on it (fun fact: I quite like art too). I have been “hunting” with a gun (no idea what type though – a long and heavy one) but only shooting clay pigeons, not living, breathing pigeons. I could never shoot an animal (with a gun or a bow) even though I eat them… such hypocrisy I know. I actually cried when shooting with a gun due to the ‘recoil’ (I prefer ‘blowback’) but all in all my love of archery means I prefer hunting over fishing, I guess…

5. Bracelet or necklace?
Necklaces win every time for me. My favourite is a detailed silver butterfly from Accessorize. Perhaps my love for necklaces is because I don’t have much else going on in the chest department, if you know what I mean…

6. Lipgloss or lipstick?
I love lipgloss as long as they are pigmented. I find they generally last longer than lipsticks, I like being able to feel the glossy texture on my lips and gosh they sure smell good! I promise to do a post on my favourite lipglosses soon – they make me so happy!

7. Orange or apple juice?
Okay, I’m going to come straight out with it – I mix the two together. Before you close this page in disgust – hear me out! We drink flavoured juices daily with exotic combinations so why not try mixing your own? I also apply this thought to mixing ketchup and mayonnaise – just try it before you knock it and let me know what you think!

8. Neutral or colour eyeshadow?
For my everyday look I stick to neutral eyeshadows however I used to be completely obsessed with purple after reading an article that it was the perfect match for brown/hazel eyes (fun fact: my eyes are hazel). I’m definitely beginning to experiment with brighter colours though, I just need to find a good brand to rely on – any recommendations??
Hahahahaha what was I doing? Hard to imagine I had a boyfriend looking like this eh? My phase of dark purple eyeshadow and, again, the horrid fringe.

9. Perfume or body spray?
This is a difficult one. I have about five perfumes I wear on a regular basis and I adore their scents, however I also love a quick spritz of refreshing body spray to boost my mood! I’ll go for body spray. No – perfume! Ahh I can’t decide!!

10. Jeans or leggings?
Jeans. ‘Nuff said.

11. Morning or evening shower?
Always morning – I feel really awake after blasting myself with cold water (yup I rinse with icy water – it’s supposedly good for you).

12. Cats or dogs?
The ultimate question. Can I pick both? No… Well then I think I’ll have to say cats because I currently have a ‘cat wall’ in my room, two cat calendars, a cat cushion and a ring that I wear every day of a stylised cat head (it's my favourite :3). And no I am not obsessed – yet…
13. Brushes or fingers?
I have a modest collection of makeup brushes which are great, especially my trusty GOSH kabuki brush, but I much prefer using my fingers. I feel they give a much more natural finish and are much easier to wash than brushes which take forever to dry!

14. Powders or liquids?
Oooh this question got me all excited for some reason (please don’t judge me). Since I have oily/combination skin I prefer to wear powder on my face and eyes. I also love having a matte finish to my makeup and highlight again with powder.
15. Comedy or horror?
I despise horror films – the tension of knowing something scary is going to happen but not knowing when just stresses me out! I do however love a good comedy – note ‘good’. Some of my favourites include Cheers, Frasier (Kelsey Grammer ftw) and Family Guy for when I have not yet woken up on Sunday morning and my brain cannot appreciate complex humour. OH and The Big Bang Theory – how could I forget?! Sorry Sheldon!

16. Long or short nails?
I would love to have long nails but mine are so weak that they break and peel extremely easily. I’m currently trying to grow them out to be strong and healthy though so I can share some nail designs with you all – I love nail art!


So, that sums up my ‘get to know me’ post – I hope you all enjoyed learning a little bit about the person behind the blog. If you have done a similar post I would love for you to share it with me in the comments!

And please, let me know what you think of the ketchup/mayonnaise combo!!



**Questions sourced from nikkietutorials.com, marshalljonesjr.com and the brain of Mairi Lowe (me)**

This or That: Get to Know Me

Rachael, Emily and meee!
Okay, so this post may not be exactly what you expected from the title. Unfortunately I don't know the secret of how to get a kiss from the amazing Katy Perry. However what I do know is how to get sparkle-tastic Katy Kat lips, thanks to Beauty Boulevard's new product.

Seeing Katy Perry on tour was one of the best nights of my life. EVER. The last UK leg of her Prismatic World Tour took place on Saturday, and now we Brits must unfortunately say farewell.

Beauty Boulevard's innovative Glitter Lips product embellished my lips as I sang screamed out Roar and Firework - the ultimate test. Keep reading for a review of this fascinating gem!

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I knew I had to dress up to see the one and only Katy Perry and what better way to show my appreciation for her than glam glitter?! A few Google searches later and I discovered Beauty Boulevard, a relatively new brand co-founded by Rachel and Paula. You can find them on Twitter here.

I fell in love with the idea and was interested in the claim that it can make it through a three course meal including drinks. I'm very pleased to tell you that it did indeed live up to this claim (I tested it out during dinner the day before the concert too!).

The packaging is very simple, with a handy little window so you can see the shade before you buy. I bought mine online, however I believe it is starting to make it onto the shelves in shops such as Harvey Nichols! No wonder, as it is definitely not the cheapest lip product at £12.50. But for Katy Perry - it was worth it.

It contains 24 milligrams of glitter, and after four applications there is still well over three quarters left.


As you can see, it comes with an instructional leaflet which was very useful. They also have a video tutorial.

There are seven shades available, ranging from nude/gold sparkles to ruby red and even a cheeky violet! I went for Sparkling Rose which had two very different swatch images on the site...

Photo credit: Beauty Boulevard 
Photo credit: Beauty Boulevard
 Photo credit: Beauty Boulevard

I only realised the second image after placing my order and this swatch is definitely more true to the shade. Hmm perhaps the first image should be removed?

Anyway... I actually do love the shade I got even though it wasn't what I was expecting.
As you can see, it is very much the second swatch and not the first!

Applying the lip glue/gloss with the doe-foot applicator onto clean, dry lips is very easy. The glue smells like - well, glue, but it's fairly weak and fades once on your lips with little to no taste at all. I left it for roughly 20 seconds before applying the glitter with the eyeshadow-like end of the brush, dabbing it on. The glitter applies well with only a few flakes of fallout.

Afterwards, you simply leave your mouth open until you feel confident that your lips aren't going to stick together. You can use the other end of the brush to wipe off excess glitter however I found this unnecessary.
The end result is beautiful, glitzy glitter lips that I'm sure even Katy Perry would be proud to wear!
I also found it easy to remove at night using my cleansing oils, however my friends used face wipes and found they worked equally well. My lips were left a little sticky afterwards so I used a lip scrub to remove any residue. A quick swipe of moisturising lip balm and my lips were good as new!

Overall:

I definitely recommend this product if you are wanting to add glamour to your look. It's long-lasting, comes in seven different shades, is a reasonable price for a special occasion or two, is easy to remove and finally it looks FANTASTIC! So much glitter *o*. Just be sure to look at all the swatches on the site to check they are the same so you know what you are getting!

Check it out at Beauty Boulevard!

Big thank you to my friends Emily and Rachael for helping me test out the product!

Do you fancy trying out the glitter lips trend? What event would you wear it to - any big concerts coming up?! Perhaps my glitter lips will make their next appearance at T in the Park...

Want Katy Perry's Lips on Your Lips?

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