Thursday, 14 March 2013

How To : Transfer The Blogs You Follow To Bloglovin

So the time has come where Google have finally decided to get rid of Google Reader & GFC for good.

Google Reader has until July 1st, and GFC, well, who knows, the rumours floating around for this have been going as long as I've been blogging, so it's kind of one of those 'I'll believe it when I see it' situations. Anyway, if you want to read more about it in better detail see, here. It's essentially all a plan for making everybody use Google+, but ain't nobody got time for that!

Anyway, this has caused quite the stir. If you follow a lot of Bloggers on Twitter, like I do, you pretty much wont see anything but 'oh my god, what about my followers, what about the people I follow, how will anybody ever read blogs again?!' everybody is freaking out, but there really is no need.

Google have something called Google Takeaway that can solve our dilema. So here's what you need to do.

1. Go to Google Takeout make sure you're clicked on 'All Of Your Data' where you will see a list of names & icons of all Google owned programmes. Or if you wish to download your Reader data, stay on 'choose services'. Click 'Create Archive'.
2. Watch as all of your internet history loads before your very eyes.

3. Once the file has finished 'building' you will have the option to download it.
4. Extract your files from the zip file you have just downloaded.
5. Go to Bloglovin Import and upload the subscriptions.xml file.

And there you have it. Five, simple steps to importing all of the blogs you currently follow to Bloglovin.

I'm not a huge fan of Bloglovin and it is to a certain extent a bit of an inconvenience to have to change everything you're used to, but this is at least one simple solution to the problem. So if that is one thing you were worried about then do follow the steps to converting your subscriptions to Bloglovin!

I know that another worry is that people won't follow and thus bloggers will lose followers/views/comments etc, but I think the majority will be switching to something like this or any other site for following blogs and eventually it will become normal. Just like all changes on the internet, everybody panics/gets annoyed at first, but soon it will be second nature.

Finally, if this doesn't work for you and you selected the 'all data' section, you have at least an entire backup of your blog, youtube, and any other Google based wonders. It may just be a case of adding the blogs one by one. Although I am trying to find another solution for those that it doesn't work for.

I hope that helps!
xo

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Travel Essentials : Amsterdam

Travelling is one of my favourite things to do.

I'm forever daydreaming of my next trip or what part of the world I want to see next, so when I was invited to party with my sister for her 22nd birthday in Amsterdam; I couldn't say no. I'd like to say that this will be a cultural trip, but quite honestly it is most likely going to be full of all the clichés; sex museums, underground cafes & general drinking. What? It is a birthday after all.

We are setting off tomorrow via ferry and are there for two nights - three days, so I'm trying my best to pack lightly. I thought I would share with you a couple of my travel 'essentials' although, this time, it will be minus the sun-tan lotion and more of the winter woolies!
Being a big eye-shadow fan, I found it fairly hard to narrow it down to a manageable size of four shades that will take me from day to night. Welcome the Mac Quad Pro Palette - (left to right as above) Omega, Arena,  Wedge & Soba. They're all fairly neutral but this also includes being able to do my brows (thank you Omega) and eyes all in one without the weight of multiple products in my bag. Score.

Next up are things to keep me cosy. I'm not a fan of being cold and it can often make me quite grouchy, so mittens (link), wooly hats and earmuffs are essential... (anybody would think I'm going to the Antarctic) But, better to be safe than sorry! I've never been to Amsterdam, so I'm trying to be prepared for all weather, for all I know it could be very unpredictable, aka, like it is here. 
Miniature shampoo, conditioners, and general depotting of cleansers and moisturisers are my ideas of fun (true story, bro), so, I raided Boots like there was no tomorrow. Chances are I'll probably just stick to dry shampoo and rough it out but I like the option of a good hair wash so I bought some mini Aussie products & a body wash to see me through. I've also depotted a blob of my Emma Hardie cleanser (review here), Nuxe Reve de Miel lip balm and a smidgen of Antipodes Vanilla Pod Day Cream Moisturiser (mini review here) to keep dry skin at bay. 

A trip wouldn't be complete without something to capture all the good times on. Instead of taking my Canon 550d and fear getting mugged or losing it everywhere I go, I decided to take my smaller & cheaper Canon AE1 Program & a couple of rolls of Kodak Gold 200 with me. I love using film and this is the perfect excuse to use it more. It's a whole different experience from using digital and it's always exciting waiting for your prints to relive all the memories!

And there you have it, in a nutshell, I also need to try fit all this into a handbag... Wish me luck!

What are your travel essentials?
xo

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Monday, 11 March 2013

An Honest Rimmel Apocalips Review

I did it again, I fell for the hype.

Mainly, I blame Boots for being practically on the doorstep and as I was wandering around looking for vitamins I just happened to come across the very-much-blogged-about : Rimmel Apocalips and was sucked in by their uniqueness. After swatching a few I decided on Galaxy as I'm always drawn to berry shades.

The Apocalips (£5.99) range (for those at the back) are a type of lipgloss/lipstick hybrid aka lip lacquer; they have all the pigmentation of a lipstick and the sheen of a gloss without any stickiness. Sounded like the perfect combination if you ask me...

So, I bought one. And yes, that means I broke my spending ban, but it turns out I wasn't the only one, which made me feel less guilty! But am I pleased now I've tested it? I guess my answer would be no. It's so hard to resist buying something when so many people say it's amazing, and normally the majority are right, however I've got to say I'm a little bit disappointed with this one.

I can't deny that the pigmentation of this product is very good, I'll give it that and there are a good selection of colours. However, there are more cons than pros and therefore I don't see it as a particularly good buy.
Firstly, I think the doe-foot applicator is very clumsy. The product seems to gather in the dip of the doe-foot and so gives an un-even finish. Which, for a colour that is so strong, is quite irritating. Perhaps it's one of those things you can put on the back of your hand and apply with a brush?

Secondly, the 'scent' of these is so foul it puts me off using it completely. Remember when you used to buy makeup that was associated with Barbie as a child, or even Playdoh? Well... It's a mixture of the two, and then still probably worse. Very plastic-y and fake smelling. Disappointing, as, while these aren't particularly pricey, they're not exactly a pound either, which is what I'd expect for something that smells like it does. 

Finally, they're drying. The consistency is quite creamy and opaque however it just doesn't last. They stay around two/three hours most, the gloss disappears fairly quickly and then the stain left behind begins to tighten as they disappear, very annoying and again, a shame. 

I think these definitely had potential to be great, and there are people who can clearly see past the scent as a whole bunch of people raved about these. Overall I think the colour and pigmentation are probably the only pro's about this product. Personally, I'm glad I didn't buy more than one as even this hasn't been used more than a handful of times. It's a shame as I really wanted to love these, but, I just don't.

What do you think? Worth the hype, or not?
xo

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Friday, 8 March 2013

Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm : Six Months On

Ah, the Emma Hardie Amazing Face Natural Lift and Sculpt Moringa Cleansing Balm.

It is quite the mouthful & quite the blogger cliche, as I'm sure Emma's stocks have gone up 110%, since every blogger has claimed its miracle working goodness over the last year. I don't buy into these things as a general rule but curiosity got the better of me and I also cautiously bought into the hype, as well. 

As the title says, I bought this cleansing balm & exfoliating kit six months ago from Feel Unique . I wanted to truly test this 'miracle' balm for a good amount of time as your skin needs at least a month to adapt to new skincare products, and so now I feel I can say if it has worked or not & the pros and cons...

Firstly, the price. £42 is a huge amount of money, or for me it is anyway, and my initial thought was 'this better be good'. As the cleansing balm by itself is £34, I thought I would spend a bit more to get the kit which includes 100ml Cleansing Balm, Rosehip exfoliation beads and an Emma Hardie double sided muslin cloth.

I have had this one pot for six, nearly seven months, using it daily to clean my face. If I were to add up the amount I would spend on makeup wipes (that ruin my skin anyway) it actually works out cheaper for the balm. For me it's a no brainer - bad skin & cheap wipes or great skin & a luxurious product? Of course it seems a lot to put all that money in at once, but I feel it's worth it in the long run.
Another thing I thought before I bought it was that it would make taking my makeup off a longer process, but actually that's wrong too. I use around a 5/10p sized blob mixed with warm water to create a milky 'paste' and begin to massage it into my face. I then use the muslin cloth to buff away all of the product & my makeup comes with it. This stuff is amazing at removing eye makeup, almost like it melts away under the warmth of your fingers. I am still impressed to this day that, combined with the cloth (the soft side feels like it almost 'sucks' the make-up off of my face), my eyelashes are back to being blonde & there isn't a trace of make-up left after one use. No panda eyes for me! It also only takes around 3 minutes for the whole process. Not long at all.

On my face as a whole this isn't overly 'rich', it removes oil, not adds it, despite it being full of essential oils & ingredients for practically every skin type (revitalising for dull & mature skins, yet calming for sensitive skin). I have combination/dehydrated skin for reference. I find this extremely hydrating and my skin just glows after using it. The majority of my dry patches have balanced out and my skin looks fresh, healthy & clean afterwards! I can still see me using this in Summer.

As for blemishes & spots, I've genuinely had a lot less of them. Only three/four months on did I notice that, and of course, I still get hormonal induced spots & stress related blemishes, my skin is by no means perfect, but, these things happen. The general, irritating, middle of the month spots have gone and haven't come back. Another plus point. I think the proof really is in the pudding, as I feel confident to not wear foundation most days, which for me, speaks volumes. I can look at my skin & be happy with it, which I have never done before. 

Oh, did I mention that is smells exactly like Lush's Gorgeous Moisturiser? Because it does. It has such a wonderful orange & jasmine scent that makes it a pleasure to use. I actually look forward to taking my makeup off now, more than I enjoy putting it on! 
Finally, the cons... The rosehip beads are not comfortable to use. In fact, I've probably only used them once as they're very scratchy, but I'm sure it's different for different skin types. Also, the container has leaked somehow (as you can probably see in the pictures) and has managed to settle in between the layers of the pot, which, is more of a visual thing rather than a flaw of the balm itself!

Overall? I LOVE YOU EMMA HARDIE! *ahem* 

I already have plans for buying another pot of this, it has changed my skin for the better and I can't imagine using anything else any time soon. I realise this is quite a lengthy review, but I had a lot to say about this wonder-balm, and finally I've found something completely worth the hype.

Obviously there are a mix of reviews out there, and of course everybody's skin is different, but for me? This is perfect.

Have you tried this? What do you think?
xo

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