Saturday, 25 June 2016

Having Confidence in Photographing Outfit Posts In Public



Hat - H&M (link similar) 

Sunglasses - H&M

Jeans - Topshop

Shoes - Converse

Choker - c/o Boohoo

If I were to describe myself, shy would be one of the first that sprung to mind. Since a very young age, I've lacked in confidence and I was, most times than enough, that quiet girl sat quivering at the mention of anything that meant talking in front of people or putting myself out there. I'd read fashion blogs for many years before starting my own, with dreams of having one, but there were one obstacle in that way - and it was taking photographs outside in public. I've done it now for over two years, and lemme tell ya, I'm still just as scared as I was 24 months ago - only I've learnt some ways in which makes it all a little less cringe. I really feel like my blog turned a corner once I started taking outfit photographs to feature in my posts and it's opened so many doors for me. So if you're reading this and you're wanting to shoot outfit photographs for your blog but you're somewhat terrified, here's are some of my tips to help you out.

- First things first, to get used to taking outfit photographs somewhere other than inside my house (which is where I started out!) I spent a few weeks just taking photos in the back garden. Granted I did get a few odd stares from my neighbours, but it's all good practice, and it helped me get that 'OH GOD WHAT AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE' awkwardness out of the way. Plus it helped me learn what worked and what didn't for me so photographing in public wasn't so much of a deal.

- If possible, find another local blogger to help you out with your outfit photographs. The majority of my outfit posts are photographed by the lovely Helen of The Lovecats Inc as we started taking each others photos just over two years now. Every week or so, we'll meet up armed with a bag load of outfits, very glamorously get changed in nearby toilets (or the street if necessary... #fbloggerproblems) and take photographs for a few posts at a time. I find it much easier to photograph with someone who just gets it, where you can both be equally awkward together. Let's be honest, it's so much easier to make a fool of yourself when there's someone else to share that with when photographing.

- When I first started taking photographs in public, I was adamant that I'd only photograph in places where there wasn't anyone around and if anyone did walk past, I'd pick up my bags and awkwardly play on my phone or something. Nowadays I'm not really that fussed who is nearby and who is watching (because trust me, there's always one nosey parker), but in those initial few months scouting out locations that weren't busy really helped. Wherever you live, I'm sure there's plenty of quieter streets around, maybe even around near housing areas which are likely to be quieter during the day etc.

- Now my signature style as such, is my hat. And admittedly, it's a comfort blanket and if I'm not wearing it, I don't feel very confident about taking outfit photographs. It's silly really, as it's just a hat, but when I was a real blogging newbie, I adopted the attitude of 'I'll wear this hat, it'll make me look put together and I'll sort of fake being confident'. I was secretly dying inside, but I embodied a more confident persona when I wore the hat and it's sort of just stuck. Now people know me and my blog for my hat and I love that!

- Wear what YOU feel comfortable in, not what you think 'looks best for the blog'. I can't stress this enough, it's super easy to find yourself falling into following certain trends, whether you feel like they suit you or not. Chances are, you'll probably feel awkward whenever you're photographing in public, so if you're wearing an outfit you don't feel 100% in, it'll make the whole task trickier, plus it'll be clear in photographs that you aren't feeling your best. It's so important to stick to your guns and wear what you want to wear, not what you think other people expect you to wear. Do your thing. Sometimes outfits work in photos, sometimes they don't (plenty of mine don't make the blog) but don't ever wear something purely for the likes.

- And if all else fails, something that has always stuck in my head through the embarrassment and red-faced moments, is that "most people are too busy worrying what people are thinking of them, to really ever think anything about you".

I'm thinking of doing a series on outfit photographs, doing some tips of finding locations/lighting/camera settings/photography tips etc - what do you think? Let me know if you'd be interested!

And if you're a blogger with any tips you'd add to this post, I'd love to hear them!

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Awkward-Length Trousers


Top - Zara (link similar)

Culottes - M&S

Hat - H&M (link similar)

Sunglasses - H&M

Shoes - M&S

Neckerchief - Primark (link similar)

Being just a little over 5 foot, I'd kind of put the whole awkward-length-jean trend to the back of my mind, with most petite ranges only catering for a limited range of styles. However, in recent weeks I've really got back into charity shopping and when searching a local Oxfam, I came across these M&S wide leg jeans. Ok, so they're actually culottes that are really too long for me (lol), but they fall at that awkward length and I totally love them. They're really flattering for my shape and they were brand new with tags still attached for less than a fiver, so I couldn't really not pick them up could I now? I love you charity shopping. I'm finding them really fun to style up, with this somewhat Parisian-inspired outfit being one of my favourites.

Now we all know a breton stripe is one of my style staples. I must wear one every other day, I know, the obsession is very real. And paired with this black neckerchief that I picked up in Primark, it's a match made in heaven, yes? To try and length my short legs somewhat, I decided to wear these pointed lace-up flats from M&S which are super comfy and great for days of exploring (which this day these photographs were taken on was!). Albeit they aren't so perfect when the sun comes out... I have some rather funny looking tan lines now, but we'll ignore that! And of course, my baker boy hat, which seems to be surgically glued to my head... still.

So what do you think of the awkward-length jeans trend? How would you style them? I'd love to hear what suggestions you have!

Monday, 20 June 2016

What's In My Travel Makeup Bag

The Base Products 

- With temperatures well over 30C where I'm headed on holiday next week, I'm not sure having an ultra flawless base is going to be my main priority since chances are, it'll have melted off within 5 minutes. However, my travel makeup bag features a selection of products to cover all bases depending on what I'm feeling like. When it comes to the summer, I'm all about that dewy, fresh look.  I'm not normally huge when it comes to primer, but just to be on the safe side, this mini-size of the Laura Mercier Radiance Primer is going to be perfect to ensure my makeup lasts the day. For the daytime, I'm absolutely loving the L'Oreal Nude Cushion Magique which provides a light/medium (but totally buildable) coverage. I was somewhat sceptical about this foundation, but I'd be lost without it now. It's perfect for evening out my skintone, it's super travel-friendly and leaves the most lovely dewy finish to the skin. When it comes to evening however, I think I'll be reaching for the Laura Mercier Silk Creme Moisturizing Foundation. I picked it up last year, unfortunately the wrong shade (it's supposedly the palest but it sure ain't light on me), but it has a great formula and with a little tan, I'm hoping to finally get some wear from it. It has a fuller coverage which is ideal for night time but again it has a wonderful fresh (and moisturising as the name would suggest) finish. Concealer-wise, I've really been enjoying trying out ones recently, with the Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer and the NYX Concealer being two of the best. Both completely different, the Rimmel one is much lighter in consistency and doesn't provide such a good coverage (but it's perfect for drier skin) whilst the NYX one is creamy with a heavy coverage that I love to use on any blemishes.

In terms of powder, if there's one product that I know it's going to be a life-saver, it's the Vichy Dermablend Setting Powder which does exactly what it is, sets the base. It's finely-milled consistency means that it never feels cakey at all on the skin, and it keeps everything in place without making my base looking too matte. When on holiday, bronzer is a must (especially when your fake-tanned body is a totally different shade to your face... oops) so I'll be taking along this Topshop Bronzer in Mohawk (link similar). I don't actually own any other bronzers so I can't really compare this to anything else, but I find it lasts all day, adds some nice colour to my face without being over the top and blends beautifully. I've not tried many of the Topshop beauty products, but based on this one alone I'd certainly be interested in trying in more in the future. And finally, highlighter wise there's no question about it - this Sleek Highlighting Palette in Solstice is all I could ever need.

The Eye Products

- When it comes to the summer, I tend to ditch the heavy eye makeup and go for something a little minimal, so these will be the only brow and eye products I'll be taking with me for the week. Firstly, for brows I'll be bringing my must-have brow product - Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Permanent Taupe which I use with an angled brush to fill in my brows. It's my exact colour and lasts all day, I'd seriously recommend it for brows! And if I'm looking for something a little more dramatic, I thought I'd bring along this Benefit Goof Proof Brow Pencil that I picked up in this month's ELLE magazine. Granted it's slightly too dark for me, but with a light hand it adds a nice definition. Eyeshadow-wise, I'll be taking the Maybelline Colour Tattoo in On and On Bronze as it's great one-colour wash sort of product, as well as this MAC Eyeshadow in Amber Lights as I find this shade really complements a tan. And in case I'm wanting to go for something a little different, this Collection Palette has everything else I could need - it's my favourite drugstore eyeshadow palette for sure!

Maybe it's a little over the top, but I'll be bringing along two mascaras with me for the week. I've spoken so many times about my No7 Velvet Lash Mascara that we all know it's my holy grail and I'd be quite frankly lost without it. But I'll also be bringing this bareMinerals Flawless Definition Mascara along with me too - I absolutely love how much volume and length this mascara gives my lashes, especially my bottom lashes. And since neither of these are waterproof (which is a necessity on holiday) I'm going to give this NYX Proof It Mascara a go which you apply on top of your mascara to make it waterproof. I'm not sure how well it's going to work, but I thought it was worth a shot!

The Lip Products

- If there's any time of the year that I like to wear a bolder lip, it's certainly in the warmer months. I'll be bringing along just the two lipliners (which is a big deal for me), one which is the NYX Lip Pencil in Nude Suede Shoes that is my go-to everyday colour right now, as well as this Kiko Lip Pencil I picked up last year. It's a colour unlike any other I've tried, but I'd describe it as being somewhere between a bright pink, a red and a coral sort of shade so ideal as a base colour for other shades. In terms of lipstick, I'm going bold with a bright orange in the shape of Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Kiss Me Coral and a fuchsia pink in this Chanel Rouge Allure Lip Colour in 93 Exaltee. Since I'm a little weary of lipsticks melting (hence only bringing the two) I thought I'd also bring along some fail-safe matte lip cremes with me. I absolutely love this Sephora Cream Lip Stain in Pink Souffle for the summer months, as well as this Topshop Velvet Lips in Blood Orange (link similar). They're both colours I don't tend to get much wear from at home as I tend to gravitate to more natural colours on a day to day basis, so I'm really excited to get some wear from them.

And if all else fails I'm really favouring a nude lip, then I've fallen head over heels for this Chanel Rouge Coco Stylo in 218 Script. I'm not really sure what you'd class this product is as it's certainly some sort of lip balm, lip gloss and lipstick hybrid that is a total dream to wear. I was kindly gifted this in a goodie bag at a recent event, and I was incredibly happy to see the shade I was lucky enough to receive - my perfect pink/brown/mauve nude. It's one of those products I know I can apply even without a mirror without fear of it being halfway around my face, plus it's great for those days where my lips may be feeling a little cracked. I'm already eyeing up other colours in this range.

So what are your travel makeup must-haves? Anything you think I'm missing from here?