As it is basically the middle of the month now, I thought it was time to do my non-beauty favourites. So a whole list of things I have just loved this month. It is a completely random selection but then that is part of the fun of non-beauty favourites I think. I am still loving a lot of the things I told you about last month, in particular my iPhone and Instagram. I am really enjoying following people on Instagram, getting a glimpse into peoples lives as well as seeing some absolutely stunning and cute photos. I think my favourite instagrammer is wa_sabi for the cutest cat photos, they make my days a better place.
Onto my selection for this month:
Book – American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Once again I am linking to Amazon because that is where I have taken the image from, also because I love my kindle so much that I think everyone should have one 😛 I was very lucky and got mine as my Christmas and Birthday present. You possibly won’t like this book if you aren’t open to fantasy or if you are very religious. I enjoyed the story and found the ‘lore’ interesting, complex and quite beautiful. I really like stories set in our world, that take the things we know and twist our perception of it. In a similar way to Harry Potter (not that I particularly enjoy those books, sorry to those of you who do) and The Chronicles of Narnia where you have another world overlayed on ours, this book is a more sophisticated, adult take on this concept. It is quite disturbing/unsettling at times, like a lot of Neil’s books, yet at the same time I think wondeful. For those of you who have read/seen Stardust you will have an idea of what I mean by this. I couldn’t put it down, then towards the end I started trying not to read it because I didn’t want it to ever end. To me that is definitely the sign of a good book.
Film – Into the Wild
This film is based on a book, which itself is biographical. It is about a young man who, having had the combination of a rich, technically easy but also hurtful, damaging childhood watching his parents hate each other goes off as the title suggests ‘into the wild’. I know it is definitely a feeling I have had at times, though one I would never act upon, of wanting to just get away from everything and everyone and be self sufficient and at one with nature. I think by the end I didn’t particularly like Chris, the young man whose life this film documents. He acted quite selfishly and whilst improving some peoples lives along his journey he also hurt quite a lot of people who held a lot of love for him. Either way it is a beautifully shot and directed film with an interesting (though sad) story. If you haven’t seen it and have 148 minutes with nothing to do (yeah, not the shortest film out there but I didn’t notice the time) it is well worth a watch. Human lives and the choices people make are fascinating.
Music – Fearless – Taylor Swift
I love Taylor Swift… Just Saying… I like a seriously random selection of music but mainly I enjoy songs with interesting lyrics that I can identify with in some way. I also tend to like happier sounding music (even if the lyrics aren’t so positive) because frankly I don’t need depressing music in my life. Romeo and Juliet has to be my favourite play, ballet, film, music (Prokofiev *swoons*) and ‘Love Story’ is possibly one of my favourite songs ever. I finally downloaded this album a few days ago and have already listened to it on repeat for quite a few hours. Sure, it might not be edgy or cool but with however many million copies sold I’m obviously not the only one who enjoys this. I also happen to think Taylor is pretty insanely beautiful and wears the clothes I would love to. On a similar note, a cover I have must have watched a good 20+ times now is this one by Tiffany Alvord of ‘We are Never Ever Getting Back Together’. Obviously not from the same album but a great song and a wonderful (and funny) cover.
App – PS Express
No photo for this, mainly because just showing you a logo is pretty boring! I really enjoy using this for editing photos. Mainly for adjusting the contrast, tint, temperature and reducing noise slightly (makes slight imperfections on a FOTD just disappear before I upload them to say instagram). I don’t edit photos that go up on my blog, bar a bit of occasional cropping out of up the nose shots when I’m trying to do a close up lip swatch! However, when they are going up elsewhere it isn’t so much about showing exactly how I look but more about looking that bit better! Essentially I consider using photoshop like this as a second layer of makeup. If I added more makeup and had proper lighting… I would look like my edited photos. I don’t change them beyond belief because then I just feel they look weird. Some of the effects are really nice too, I particularly like the ‘vintage’ one. It isn’t the cheapest app out there, especially if you start adding extra packs but I think it is easy to use and works really well.
Item – Bracelets I Made
Having seen this video from Ingrid at MissGlamorazzi on YouTube
. I popped down to my local craft store and picked up some cording, beads and findings (bracelet closures). I then had a lovely evening spent choosing out a few more beads from my collection and making up the above bracelets. Not only is this a really fun thing to do, I think the end result is really nice. I’ve been wearing these to work and had a few compliments on them. I particularly like the white beads I chose, they are slightly holographic in a strong light which is quite amazing. One tip I would add to the above video and if you fancy trying to make them yourself – once you have knotted the ends and cut off any spare cord, coat the knot in clear nail varnish. This will hold the knot together well and help your bracelet last even longer than they would otherwise!
Education – Makeup Course
The look above was created on me by one of my fellow classmates last week. I am really enjoying this course, I am taking the ‘level 2 award in makeup’ at my local technical college. It runs for six weeks for three hours a week in the evening. I also complete a whole load of worksheets at home every week and am completing a health and safety course in the salon course too. I haven’t enjoyed learning this much in a really long time. Not all of it is interesting, not all of it I agree with but on the whole I think it will have been a valuable and fascinating experience. One notable suggestion which I balked at was ‘for an evening look the cheeks and base should be at the same intensity level as the eyes and lips’, I would say they should be intensified in proportion to the eyes and lips. However, to say have them at the same level
do you want everyone going round looking like a clown?! That would literally mean that if you did a bright red lip look, the cheeks should have the same intensity… hmm. I think we can all see the flaw there! There is another course in April for ‘Fashion and Photographic Makeup’ that I am definitely considering taking. Yes, these courses aren’t particularly prestigious but considering they cost around £200 each, they are a lot more affordable than most and can fit round a normal work schedule.
Blog – The Puzzle Of Sandra’s Life
I am loving Sandra’s blog currently, in particular the ‘Weekly Web Likes’
feature. She has a really great selection of different posts, all really interesting. I love her nail art posts and general notd posts. I’m always inspired though rarely get round to trying any out as I quite literally can just about manage to paint my nails within the nail bed, adding anything else is a bit beyond me! Maybe one day if I keep practicing… She also has great style and taste, so you should definitely go check out her blog.
I hope you enjoyed seeing my favourites of this month, are there any you’ll be checking out? Do let me know some of your favourites / link me if you’ve written a favourites post too 🙂