Monday, 27 June 2016

ANNE MARIE AT FOLD FESTIVAL: MY GALLERY


It was my first time hearing Anne Marie live. Corrr, What a girl. She's got the voice, the style, the moves, the wit....the swag (yes, I know I can't pull off saying that). No wonder she's been topping all those polls that suggest she's going to be a big deal in the coming year. If she's not on your radar yet, you will definitely have heard her powerful vocals already, having lent her enviable talent to the mighty Disclosure.

There's plenty of good singers around, but Anne Marie has that much sought after extra something somethin...I wanted to avoid saying the X Factor, but that is the easiest way to get it across.  Her album is out now and I reccommend you make a purchase now, after witnessing her at Saturday's Fold Festival I fully intend to show my support for this young talent. I feel like she challenges topics in a relateable way, and I predict this will endear her to the masses.

I'm no music photographer. Don't get me wrong I love taking pictures, and I think I'd love to do it for a living, but as you will see from the images I am definitely at hobby stage, in part due to the fact I can't afford the equipment needed. I just used my normal blogging camera for these stage shots, so some of them really showcase the lack of pixels I have at my disposal. Even though I knew the pictures I took wouldn't be high res enough to be deemed professional, I wanted to say yes to opportunity because it's fun, good practice and I just enjoy working with composition and trying to capture those special frames. I just thought I'd best say this so professional photogs don't feel the need to rip them ro shreds, I'm fully aware the quality makes them look like they were taken with a potato. The fact Anne Marie looks so beaut in spite of this tells you how ruddy gorg she really is!

If you'd like to use any of these images please email me at sophie.eggleton@googlemail.com
Thanks x

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EVOLVE BEAUTY: REVIEWED


So the next vegan and cruelty brand I want to spread the word about it the wonderful Evolve, who create handmade products all created in their studio in Herfordshire. 

These artisan producers offer a stunning range of organic and natural skin, body and hair products. Every product they create is hand-crafted using natural and organic oils, butters and natural superfoods sourced from all around the globe.
The products are all made in small batches to ensure they are completely fresh and all the ingredients and their powers are at their optimum level. Now, let's get on with the reviews...

This pure clear serum for normal to dry skin contains 200mg hyaluronic acid per bottle, proven to hydrate skin from within and plump up fine lines and wrinkles. Organic pomegranate extract softens and protects. Delicately fragranced with organic rosewater.
Size: 30ML
99.30% Natural
24.00% Organic

Directions: Apply gently to cleansed face and neck. Follow with a moisturiser or other Evolve treatment.

Ingredients

Hyaluronic Acid can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water making it a highly effective component in moisturisers.
Hyaluronic acid helps to reduce wrinkles, making the skin look younger with an improved skin tone. We use lower molecular weight Hylauronic Acid which penetrated deeper and has more effective hydrating properties. It also increases the production of collagen.
Pomegranate Extract is high in ellagic acid which helps to regulate cell turnover and strengthen the cell membrane therefore limiting water loss and free radical damage.
All Ingredients (INCI): Water (Aqua), Rosa Damascena (Rose) Water*, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder*, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Fruit Extract*, Glycerin, Amorphophallus Konjac Root Powder, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Sodium Sodium Dehydroacetate. *ingredients from organic farming

I've heard great things from my friends and fellow bloggers about this product, so I was really excited to use it. Due to the powers of it's ingredients it sounded like a must-have beauty product for someone of my age (an age which is older than many bloggers/YouTubers - that's all I'm saying) . I'm definitely looking to prevent further ageing and try to rectify some of the existing signs. The Pomegranate extract would encourage my cells to renew, and refresh and the low weight Hylauronic Acid would increase production in collagen - which together would help my face look plumper and fresher.
The first time I used it I liked how my skin felt in the morning, but was disappointed to see quite a few white-heads scattered around my face. I didn't know whether this was a good sign because it was causing bad things to want to leave my skin, or whether it was a sign my skin was reacting badly to it. My skin has been particularly argumentative lately so maybe it just needed a bit of a break from products in general. I tried it a couple more times and the same happened again, but I was so pleased with how the majority of my skin felt. I wonder if this is something you should stick with for a while. Perhaps you have to deal with some bad before you see lots of good. If you don't have acne prone skin but are looking for product that plumps, improves overall texture, and generally makes you skin look a bit better, then I'd still reccommend it, in spite of my slight negative reaction.


This dry body oil is designed to give legs a glossy, high shine finish. Organic Camellia Seed Oil, Bisabolol and Organic Castor oil impart a satiny gloss to the skin without any greasiness. Mineral mica and titanium add sparkle.
Size: 100ML
100.00% Natural
96.60% Organic
Directions: Massage onto legs to reveal a gloosy, shiny finish.

Ingredients

Camellia Oil has high moisture properties and is absorbed quickly by the skin, leaving it supple and hydrated. Camellia oil contains vitamins, A, B, and E which help to protect and nourish the skin.
Bisabolol is extracted from the chamomile plant which is well-known for its soothing properties. It also gives the skin a high shine, glossy finish.
All Ingredients (INCI): Camellia Oleifera (Camellia) Seed Oil*, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil*, Bisabolol, Fragrance (Parfum), Mica, Iron Oxides, Titanium Dioxide CI 77499, CI 77891, Tocopherol, Amyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Benzoate, Benzyl Salicylate, Citronellol, Farnesol, d-Limonene, Eugenol, Linalol. *ingredients from organic farming

 My mum and I love watching red carpet shows on E. Like many people watching these sorts of programmes we turn into Joan Rivers characters, dissecting the outfit choices, hair-dos and beauty looks, as well as trying to read the body language of the couples. Of course there will be odd shocker, but on the whole we find ourselves pretty envious and desperately trying to find a flaw on the seemingly unrealistically perfect A-listers. The one thing we both look at with wonder is the smooth silky legs, the long lithe limbs that almost look like they have a white line painted down the centre because they shine so much. After working in beauty blogger I realise that many wear body foundation, gloss, bronzers....the works. That said, we can't help but marvel at the finished products, particularly when we lift up our PJ bottoms (which we're wearing in the day time) to reveal half inch growth of hair, scales, flaking, ingrown hairs and raise bumps.
Even when I can be bothered to shave my legs (which won't be for a while with this weather and my fella being on tour) my legs are far from that Hollywood aesthetic. They're dull, lifeless and bumpy because of my tendency to grab an old clogged up bic in the bath.
I was desperately hoping this product may be an easy solution, and encourage me to wear more skirts and shorts over the next few months. When you first pump the product in to your hand (or straight on to your leg) it's an alarmingly bright yellow gold. Not a warm classic gold, mor of the gaudy kind. You worry that it might look a bit artificial on the skin, but once you rub it in you see a flattering sheen emerge. Once I had covered both of my lower legs I looked in the mirror and was thoroughly please with the results. My legs looked youthful, silky, and sparkled a bit as I angled the leg to catch the light. I found it made my legs look look more toned and shapely...I guess it's no different to applying highlighter to your face. Limb highlighting if you will. The bonus of this product is that the
Camellia Oil has super high moisture properties and contains vitamins, A, B, and E , so it  will be benefiting your skin each time you use it.

It gets a thumbs up from me, and will be even better when I have a bit of a tan.

This oil based body polish contains fine particles of organic sugar to buff skin to smooth perfection and natural Tahitian coconut Monoi macerated in exotic Tahitian blossoms of Gardenia. Natural sugar extracts gently combine with water to turn the clear balm into a creamy milk that rinses away clean, leaving skin smooth, soft and fragranced with exotic natural hibiscus. Soap free.

Size: 180ML
100.00% Natural
93.03% Organic

Directions: Massage onto dry skin, paying special attentin to elbows and  knees. Apply warm water to transform into a rich creamy milk. Rinse away. Warning: make sure your hands are dry to apply the polish, do not add water into the jar.

Ingredients

Tahitian Manoi, considered the “sacred Oil of the Polynesians”, is made by maceration of thousands of Tahitian Gardenia blossoms into Coconut Oil. It has restorative and anti-oxidant properties. It leaves the skin moisturised, soft and supple.
Sweet Almond Oil, rich in Vitamin A, E and Bs, has high moisturising, emollient and nourishing properties. It is easily absorbed and leaves skin nourished and not tacy.
Organic Sugar buffs away dead skin cells leaving skin super smooth.

All Ingredients (INCI): Sucrose*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Glycerin*, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Fruit Oil*, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, Parfum (Fragrance), Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Water*, Sucrose Laurate, Tocopherol, Amyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Benzoate, Eugenol, Linalol, d-Limonene. *ingredients from organic farming


I think this is my favourite out of the products I was kindly gifted from Evolve. The smells was so divine it made my eyes do that creepy flickery thing - I think they call it ectasy. Fruity without being sickly, it's a wonderfully yummy and summery scent. Much like the Lush lip scrubs it features sugar as the scrubbing element, organic in this instance. It contains enough sugar to make it a very easy task, some exfoliants I have used feature too little of the the grainy element, or a grain that is too small to make a speedy and satisfactory difference. 

I've been using it on my chest and arms mainly because I have been suffering with a lot of bumps on my skin in those areas. It tends to occur every summer, I'm not sure whether it's due to sun exposure or whether the increase in my sweat levels (I'm a very sweaty human) means that the follicles and pores get blocked up. Either way, I figure a twice weekly scrub wull remove dead skin and allow some fresh, hopefully smoother skin to flourish on through. It's not eradicated it, but it's definitely helped. Although it's not a huge problem right now considering I'm having to wear long sleeves and even chunky knitwear in JUNE! (god dammit) However, I am hoping at some point I'll be able to wear some flesh baring summer outfits at some bloomin' point! 

If you wish to use it on your legs do so before you shave. I've always found that these sorts of scrub products can cause a bt of a sting on freshly shaven stems. If you do use it before you will find you post shave legs will look even smoother though, so I fully reccommend you doing so.

Unlike other scrubbing products I've used the smoothing effect of this product has longevity. Many other brands I've used have made me feel touchably soft straight after use, and an hour or two more, but once the oil part of the product is gone it goes back to normal. This always make me wonder whether the product has just created an illusion of smoothness, a mask on top of the truth if you will. With frequent use this product seems to have a genuine and real effect on the condition and texture of my skin, as well as delivery that instant lushness. The fact that it's ingredients are antioxidents and restoritive make me feel like I'm doing my skin a much needed favour...it's had a fair bit of abuse over the years!!

This soft body butter contains nourishing organic shea butter and natural Tahitian coconut Monoi macerated in exotic blossoms of Gardenia. Leaves skin smooth, soft and fragranced with exotic natural hibiscus.
Size: 120ML
100.00% Natural
92.82% Organic

Directions: Massage onto body to reveal silky smooth skin.

Ingredients

Tahitian Manoi, considered the “sacred Oil of the Polynesians”, is made by maceration of thousands of Tahitian Gardenia blossoms into Coconut Oil. It has restorative and anti-oxidant properties. It leaves the skin moisturised, soft and supple.
Shea Butter, the skin superfood extracted from the nuts of the shea tree, is an instant help with dry skin. It is a strong moisturiser and has skin healing properties due to its richness in unsaturated fat, essential fatty acids, Vitamin E and D and provitamin A.
All Ingredients (INCI): Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Glycerin*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil*, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, Sucrose Laurate, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Water*, Parfum (Fragrance), Tocopherol, Amyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Benzoate, Eugenol, d-Limonene, Linalool. *ingredients from organic farming


A Body Butter is something you turn to for a session of indulgence. Perhaps you have a day at home where you are going to languish in your favourite dressing gown or sloggy clothes. Perhaps you'll be watching Netflix in the bath, with scary face mask on, then painting your nails once you've turned pruney....you know those types of evenings. I say this because, butters and rubs are not meant to soak in, you are meant to be able to feel the product on your skin. Imagine it's like a leave in conditioner for the skin.
So after you've rubbed in the product, which takes a bit of work as it's fairly firm and thick, you won't mind that you can still feel/see it. You'll find yourself sniffing yourself and enjoying it immensely, you might even find other people sniffing you, it smells THAT good. 
If used regularly you will find that the combination of Shea Butter (a product we've all loved for years) and Tahitian Manoi will leave you skin incredobly smooth, soft and nourished, and with it's inclusion of Vitamin E helpful in healing or reducing the appearance of scarring.

Thanks so much to Evolve for the products, I love the ethos behind your brand and it's a privelage to help spread the word about a brand that makes their own products, so beautifully.


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Sunday, 26 June 2016

NILE RODGERS/CHIC AT FOLD FESTIVAL - MY GALLERY



Yesterday I had a fantastic day of dancing to disco at Fold Festival at Fulham Palace. I was lucky enough to have a photo pass so decided to go nuts on taking pictures. It's always funny when you edit the hundreds of pictures you take and ask others for opinions. Some people want perfectly crisp shots with traditional composition, others like the ones that give a feeling of movement, some prefer black white, others prefer vibrant with colour. I often find myself loving the ones that are blurred, out of focus, but portray an energy. Anyway, for that reason I'm posting oodles of my shots of Nile Rodgers and Chic so there's something for everyone (hopefully). I'm going to do a write up on the festival as a whole soon, but let me just tell you that watching/listening to Chic was an incredibly joyful way to spend a Saturday, and I defy anyone not to have a good time in their company.
If anyone who finds this page would like to us any of the images PLEASE contact me on sophie.eggleton@googlemail.com to sort it out. 
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Friday, 24 June 2016

CONEY ISLAND: OUR GALLERY


Just a short 25 min Metro ride from our Brooklyn apartment we were able to enjoy sea views. It was bloody cold on that pier,  but we were pleased to see a destination we've heard about in songs and movies. There was something a bit eerie about it that day because the fairground was closed. There's omething a bit creepy about abandoned seaside destinations don't you think? There wasn't much we could do while we were there other than walk around and take pictures, so as you can see below I did that in abundance. Absolute photography nerds! So any advice for people planning on visiting, make sure you check the fairground is up and running and bring a beanie!! As always, all pictures taken on my LUMIX GM1.

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CENTRAL PARK: OUR GALLERY


So next in my series of NY picture galleries comes from our afternoon mooching around Central Park. I had always hoped to visit during Autumn so I could experience it displaying those stunning russ, yellow ocre and claret shades, but I think whenever you visit you'll be able to find a lot of beauty within.  

I had begged Si to agree to do a horse and carriage round the park, as I was desperate to imitate yet another Sex and the City moment, but it was firmly declined. Although I would have loved the old fashion romaticism of viewing the environment in this way, I think Si was sensible....god I hate it when he's right. I can't remember the exact charge for a ride but it seemed pretty extoritianate...something like $4 a minute. I was godsmacked....and very disappointed I couldn't live out this NY fantasy.

Walking round hand in hand was pretty special too though,  and I almost felt like I was in a classic rom com....me being the romantic part of the equation, Si being the comedy as he scoffed like a ravenous animal on his frank in a bun. I've never been a fan of hotdogs, for me they taste like sweat smells...if you know what I mean. The walk was making me feel a bit peckish but I decided I either wanted to hunt down a Pretzel or some Churros.

 Word of warning if you aim to do the same. Pick wisely in terms of which cart you buy from. The one I got was uncooked and tasted pretty off. I still ate it of course, but it wasn't the euphoric snacking experience I'd envisioned. 

I'll let the images do the rest of the talking, but I'm happy to tell you that I feel completely in love with Central Park. Sitting on a bench, while Si mopped up the mustard/ketchup hybrid from his lips, I looked at people walking by and felt more at peace than I have in years. I felt genuinely happen and content, and that's a very rare thing for me. 

Everywhere you turned there was something to remind you of the good of the world. Families having picnics laughing and sharing food. Couples nestling into each-others nooks and PDAing to the extreme (for once I didn't mind it). People skating, couples recreating The Notebook via little boats on the lake, mediating, crating yoga poses, fishing, and so on. There were so many activities taking place that were bringing joy to the participants. There were also photoshoots taking place, which is no suprise considering how picturesque it is - their were elegant and lithe ballerinas extending their legs on the intrictae bridges, and a beautifully styled bride and groom posing against the shimmering water.
Whatever you have on you to-do list for your trip to NY ensure a stroll through Central Park is one of them.

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Thursday, 23 June 2016

EMPIRE STATE BUILDING: OUR GALLERY


Si's at Warped tour at the moment, so the evenings at home that I'd used to try and be a bit sociable during and inevitably be forced into giving a lengthy back scratch, I know have to myself. Tonight I chose to watch a mediocre, but ultimately devestating film with my parents, scoff a bucket full of butterscoth Angel Delight, and edit some of my NY photos. 

As you guys know, because I didn't/haven't shut up about it,  going to NY was a huge dream of mine, one that had lasted over two decades. I had actually given up home after so many near trips, broken promises and disappointments.  As a big movie fan these iconic locations have a fantasy appeal and I wanted to be part of it. When I eventually decided to ignore the reality of my bank balance and splurge on a return flight to the Big Apple to meet Si at the end of his recording session with Dave Bendeth, I knew I'd have to try and tick off as many of the tourist spots as possible. I want to beome a character in all of those memorable scenes. 

Whenever I go to a new destination I always approach it as if I will never come back, because quite frankly, with the way things are going it is quite likely I never will (always the pessimist). The relentless and doggedly enthusiastic holidaymaker probably drove her partner insane, but I just wanted to consume and soak up as much of this city as possible.

So of course I had to drag Si to the Empire state building - the pinnacle of being an embarrassing tourist in NY. Si pretty much lived in NY for a large chunk of the last couple years so he's almost at the point where he likes to believe he's a native. He'd already got all the tourist spots out of the way a long time ago, but very kindly obliged me on this, my first trip - some days more willingly than others though. 

We'd already had a very busy day walking The Highline, shopping in Chelsea Market, mooching round Central Park and more, so I was starting to get my tired eyes by the time we entered the building. We thought it would be nice to take in the views from the top at sunset, but knew it would probably be heaving if we arrived just before. We got in there a bit before the sunset rush and went straight through - no queueing whatsoever. That said, even if you can walk straight through theres a bloomin' lot of roped lines you have to travel through to get to the final lift to the top. 

The view was as breathtaking as I hoped it would be, it's not an overstatement to say it took my breath away. To be honest that may have had something to do with the wind which was pretty much stealing my breath and whisking it away with it's violent gusts. Very inconsiderate.
The reason we took sooo many pictures (see below) is because we thought must of them would show us hidden by my hair, or looking annoyed at the oblivious fellow tourists who loved to make cameos in our shots. Si nearly lost his **** numerous times, at some particularly rude elderly tourists who were barging people away to esnure they got their bazillion pictures and completely lacking in tourist etiquette.

The one negative I will say is the lack of seat. After a while up there I found my energy and health dwindle and deteriorate and I was desperate to sit down. There were no seats, so I resorted to sitting on the floor...just waiting for a gruff security person to tell me to get up off the floor, like they tend to do. My eyes actually filled with salty water because my muscles and bones ached so much. I think my exciteable quest to do it all clouded my judgement. I definitely tried to cram way too much in to my day. It would have been difficult for a 'normal' person to do that much without being destroyed but with my faitgue it was unrealistic and rather foolish. Lesson definitely learned though. 
I felt terrible preventing Si from getting his much desired Superiority Burger though. Afterwards I gritted teeth to find this award winning food destination with Si. When I saw there was a queue outside and there was no seating inside the restaurant (it was more fast food in style) I slumped by the tree outside and just told Si I couldn't do it. I felt so bad, but it was unlike any bone/muscle pain I'd felt before. So instead we went to a nearby restaurant, with no queue, and lots of seats, and ate their instead....thankfully the food was yummy. 

So that's my Empire State Building experience. These days a lot of people tend to Top of the Rock instead, but I just felt I had to tick this off the list first. 

Hope you enjoy my memories below...

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VLOG: METAL HAMMER GOLDEN GODS AWARDS


Last week I was lucky enough to attend Metal Hammer's Golden God Awards at Hammersmith Apollo. I didn't get too much footage of my night, so I chose not to notify my subscibers of this upload - it didn't feel good enough. In case people wanted to see the footage I did manage to get from the event, I created a vlog anyway...anyone searching Metal Hammer Awards or similar should be able to find it. If you've found this post from a google search, I hope you enjoy the video!





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OUTFIT POST: GETTING ZIGGY WITH IT


I'm finding it really hard to write or talk at the moment, my brain fog is at a level where I have an inability to translate my thoughts and opinions into easily digestable spoken or written words. So today's post will be brief and dedicated purely to the aesthetic of these images. 

Yesterday I went for a walk with me dear ma, who kindly obliged in helping me take some outfit pictures. I always feel an intense guilt if I don't do some form of work if I take some time out of my working day and leave my laptop. 

I wore my favourite new long sleeve from Zara, emblazoned with my dearest and still greatly missed Bowie. I really dig the tomboy/sporty vibe of the design and shape, and it serves as a lovely antidote to the tight or cropped tops that we are constantly told we should be wearing at this time of year. It will probably be my new go-to sloggy tops for those days I'm at home and just crave comfort. 
I wore it with my new cream distressed skinnies from H and M. I have a couple pairs of white jeans but after trying on these I decided I much prefer the muted colour of these, they feel a bit cooler somehow. 

To incorporate a further nod to the flamboyance of Ziggy, I put on my velvet ankle boots by Public Desire. I love the gold hardwear on the top. If Public Desire aren't on your radar, you must visit their site now, you won't believe the trend-lead bargains on offer. 

A vital ingredient of this look comes courtesy of the red lip created using Jenneration X from Jenn Im's collection with Colourpop. 

So that's about it from me today. Hopefully my brain will shift into gear soon. Till then, I hope you are all well....and everyone reading in the UK I hope you've utilised your right to vote today. 

Much love xx


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Wednesday, 22 June 2016

DON'T WORRY BE HAPPY....(LIKE IT'S THAT EASY!)


I don't have a massive Instagram following, so I don't get a huge amount of comment and conversation under my images, but yesterday's post (featuring this slogan top) and my confession to being a worry wart, encouraged countless others to share their worry related woes. 
It really feels like worry is taking up too much of our precious time these days, and for many it feels like an impossible cycle to break. 

I used to think it was nature rather that nurture, having grown up with a mother that often showcased the signs of being extremely stressed or anxious. Perhaps I just inherited this tendancy to concentrate on negative possibilities from her, like I have my knobbly knees, short legs and 'feature' nose (sorry mum), I thought. But I wonder whether it was due to being around her behaviour, as well as taking things on via osmosis, that my tendancy to worry became a notable characteristic. 

My parents were fairly strict when I was a child and teen, not to an unfair level, but what I was and wasn't allowed to do was very different to that of my friends. It was definitely an aspect of my youth that made me feel different to my classmates, and as you guys will remember, fitting in was so important to (most of) us back then. They weren't being strict for the sake of it though, they were clearly concerned for my welfare, and were being extremely mindful about what I was exposed to at that age. They meant well, and in some ways they put me in a great position as an adult.  
When everyone had Kickers,  I had fake Kickers from Stead and Simpson with two green tags rather than the one red and one green. A lot of my wardrobe was also hand me downs from a family friend in Holland. At the time I'd cry every time it came to shopping for school shoes, but now I see that it has instilled something I value very much. I appreciate the things I have and feel truly grateful, and I don't tend to squander money. I also think I have my head screwed on about trends. Although I feel intense pressure sometimes as a blogger, I don't tend to adopt all the trends and spend endless amounts of money (I don't have) to ensure I keep up with them all. I realise that other, less superficial things, make your life far richer. 
But a negative result of the restrictions they put on me as a kid is that I perceived more things as dangerous or risky. Because I wasn't allowed to do certains things or go to certain places, in time an  an element of fear was created, which in turn lead to tendency for worry. Or at least this is what I think may have happened. When you're young I almost think it's important to do things that are slightly scary, and to be in a position where you canmake your own mistakes, because these are the moments that prepare you for adulthood. You learn from the experiences and equip yourself with the tools to deal with them when your parents are no longer around. So therefore, if you aren't allowed to experience these hazardous or grown-up things as a youngster, you feel lacking in the ability to cope with them once you are unwittingly thrust into these situations .

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Tuesday, 21 June 2016

7AM RAVING WITH LIPTON ICE TEA


So yesterday morning was a tad different. Major understatement alert. I crawled out of bed at 5am, with a face 55% crusty % mucus thanks to the wrath of Hayfever, and attempted to make myself look less repulsive. Why? Because I was getting the 5.55 train to London to head to a rave in a church. Sure.

Has she finally lost the plot I hear you ask.... Well that's a different matter entirely, but no, my premature escape from the duvet was part of my mission to extend my weekend.  I'd like to take ownershop of this new positive and proactive ethos, but I have to confess I have Lipton Ice Tea to thanks for this break in tired tradition. 

They've curated a series of incredible Monday morning events to encourage us to squeeze a little bit more out of our precious and seemingly all too brief weekend. Time is so very precious, and we probably aren't always utlising it in the best way possible, so with this campaign they're reminding us what we could be doing in those lost hours which are usually used to fester in bed. 

I'm terribly guilty of wasting the first few hours of the day. As a sufferer of CFS and bouts of Insomnia, I often choose to press that snooze button to an extent that it could bring on a case of RSI. . It feels like the right decision at the time, but as fellow sufferers will know you don't tend to feel any better for it. When the brutal 5am alarm vibrated on my mattress yesterday morning I had the usual inclination to avoid reality for a bit longer. Knowing that I had a job to (the job being, to rave) I got myself up and put on some comfy leggings and a sloggy T-shirt. I presumed, at this ungodly hour, most people would be in the low effort bracket when it came to their appearance.
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Saturday, 18 June 2016

Taylor, Calvin, Tom, Sexism and Double Standards



I almost despise myself for a creating a post on this topic. The fact that any of us are remotely fussed about the news of a blossoming romance between Taylor Swift and Tom Hiddleston, with all the tragedy and chaos going on in the world at the moment, feels pretty ridiculous. But like I said in my last post, escapism is important in terms of momentarily distracting us from serious and devastating matters, so perhaps it’s helpful that we have these celeb stories to chew on amidst the stories we should genuinely be worrying about. But I do think we need to remind ourselves that these are people too….being a celebrity does not mean you are absent of emotion, and all other human responses. 
But I think we found ourselves particularly shocked/saddened by the Calvin/Taylor split because they seemed genuinely extremely loved up, like they may be in it for the long haul. Many of us have followed Taylor Swifts relationship history via the media, as well as her music, and I know I was very happy to see that she appeared to have found a good match in the Scottish DJ, she always referred to as Adam. I remember old interviews with Calvin, prior to what they called his Hollywood make-over, he was always very private, guarded and sometimes even a bit surly. The fact that he appeared to be okay with being  part of some of those achingly adorable Instagram moments, made you think this was a very special relationship for him too, as did the proud gaze and loving embrace captured on TV when Taylor won an award. In the same way we did with Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams, we invested a lot in this relationship. We look to couples like them to embody the romantic fantasy, the Disney fairytale. When things don’t work out we feel betrayed, and we don’t just lose a flawless couple that we looked to, to instill hope, we lose some faith…faith in love as a whole.

First things first. Let’s talk about the break up from Calvin. It was announced or made public a couple of weeks ago. This does not actually necessarily mean it only just happened. They could have split up ages ago for all we knew, and just decided to put on a united front for a while,  making sure the announcement or awareness of their separation suited their plan or strategies. I knew of a celebrity couple who decided to wait until they announced their divorce so it coincided with another A- list divorce announcement…they knew that sharing the news spotlight would be easier than having all the attention on their story. 

When we first heard of the news it was made out to be a fairly mutual decision, and Calvin Harris responded to all the buzz and questioning over social media in very mature and classy manner in his first tweet commenting on the split - very different to the aftermath of his separation from Rita Ora.  Whether things were genuinely as civil and respectful as they seemed, we don’t know. They (and/or their people) may well have decided it would be best for both parties to declare the split a amicable and mutual one, whether or not that was really the case. If Taylor had dumped (what a ghastly expression that is) Calvin via text (which has been reported) then perhaps to save some face and male pride (another outdated term perhaps) he may have asked that it be portrayed as a a mutual parting of ways. Something you may be happy to do to ensure both parties come out of it well.

Now apparently Calvin is upset because he now believes Taylor and Tom may have started whatever it is they have, while they were still together - according to ‘reports’ ( those bloody ‘reports’ and ‘close friends’)  he was not happy about their chemistry filled Met Gala dance. Once again we have no proof of this, but those wanting to feel negatively towards Taylor have inevitable capitalised on this theory - citing her as man-hungry, a goer, a cheat etc. I’ve seen a lot of 'poor Calvin' tweets, even though we really have no idea of the timeline of events or the real nature of any of these relationships. Perhaps the venom comes from the fact that we believe Taylor’s actions are the reason behind the demise of this ‘perfect couple'. How dare she live for herself and make decisions that make her happy! I mean it’s only her life!

I was also surprised to see the amount of comments saying they expected more of Tom than to date a serial celebrity monogamist. She’s dated a few famous men yes, but wouldn’t you find it safer to date someone else who understands the industry, and who values a the importance of discretion when it comes to certain personal details (who wants to risk someone selling a story including very intimate details), and dating someone who isn’t as likely to be in it for the money.  From my point of view she's seems quite a the catch for a man. I believe these views largely stem from people wrongly believing they truly know a celebrity, perhaps they’ve watched all their films or press interviews, or even met them briefly in person. Tom is an actor and in the public eye, I guarantee as a fan or TV viewer you don’t know him well enough to know what sort of partner he should be going for. Many seem to have made yet another assumption that because he is well spoken and went to a good school that he should date a certain type of person….another very outdated viewpoint.

Because many don’t want to believe Tom or Taylor would genuinely go for each-other, particularly at this stage in time, they are calling it a stunt or a calculated PR move. Obviously Tom is hot property in the UK at the moment since his raunchy stint in The Night Manager, which was followed by a campaign to crown him the next Bond. In the US his star is not sparkling quite as bright yet, so many have deduced this would be a clever move to elevate his position in America. Yes, the theories have merit, but once again there's no evidence that this is the reason - how sad that we are in era of such manipulated reality that we could believe this to be true though. 

So now let’s talk about the fact Taylor Swift has moved on. This is assuming that it is the incredibly speedy rebound we believe it to be, which I said before, we have no proof of.

I think we forget that people react in different ways, and have their own way of dealing with things. I’ve always preferred to have time on my own to reflect and languish in being be truly independent again after a long standing relationship has broken down. Some of my friends want to party and fill their calendar with booze filled nights, ones that will conclude with a few one night stands or feature temporary mood boosting random snogs. Others like to ‘shake it off’ and get back on the dating scene immediately. How your respond to a break up depends not only on your character, but the circumstance of the split and how you feel towards the other half of the partnership. If completely shattered and heartbroken you may want to give yourself time to get over the shock and grieve the loss. If you felt that it had fizzled or come to a natural end you may not feel the need to wallow and you may be eager to get back into the quest of finding your mr/mrs right or next mr/mrs right now. If the other person did you wrong, there may be an element of ‘ well I’ll show them’  and you may go on a mission to make them regret wronging you.

I think a few things that may be troubling some people about this particular love story is the fact that in recent weeks we have read reports or quotes stating that Taylor thought that Calvin was ‘the one’ and that their relationship was magical. So it makes people question whether those comments were genuine, or whether she is incredibly fickle, or makes us believe she is not mourning the end of the relationship enough. If it was as ‘magical’ as we were made to believe surely she should be crying with her cats on the sofa watching The Notebook. That’s what movie portrayals have conditioned us to believe is the correct/only reaction. 

When I’ve split from long term relationships, on the most part we’ve never been on bad terms, circumstance and timing that has been the cause for the dissolve in the partnership.This has meant that I have cared greatly about their feelings and welfare in the aftermath and never wanted to cause undue hurt. We have always remained connected via Facebook and all the other stuff that makes break ups far more traumatic (deciding when to change your relationship status ugh), so I’ve always ensured that I’ve been mindful with what I post,  out of courtesy making sure I let them know privately any developments that may cause shock or upset before posting publicly. This is always a hard balance to strike. When you decide to stay friendly with an ex it’s difficult to know how much you should tell them, censoring some of the time but ensuring they know enough so they don’t feel like they’re being lied to or given mixed signals. I hate ill feeling, particularly between two people that clearly meant a lot to each-other, but I have to admit staying friendly with exes does complicate things and sometimes a clean and bitter break can’t actually be easier to traverse.
So anyway, I couldn’t help but think of Calvin when I saw the images of her looking oh so cute and snuggly with Tom. We’ve all felt that feeling in the pit of the stomach and the scary increase of heart rate when we hear that our ex has been getting close to someone, or  when we see a flirtatious comment under a fb pictures, but to see these beachy picture-perfect stills splashed over newspapers and websites, and no doubt tweeted directly thousands of times day….well that’s gotta hurt, whatever the reason or circumstance of the break up. This is the only thing that slightly bothers me, if the break up is as fresh as it appears, out of kindness/respect I would personally have kept it under wraps a bit longer, but then again everyone says it was Calvin's retisence to settle down that lead to Taylor calling it a day. 

An ongoing theme is that we don't know what's going on, so why do we pretend to be able to give valid opinion?!

What bothered me more about all the reports regarding this evolving love/break up story is the glaring double standards and they’re what really spurred me to write this post and feel like there could be something positive to come out of writing about a stranger’s relationship - something which I wouldn’t usually want to comment on.  On the Daily Mail there were the sort of comments that make me despair and wonder whether we’ve been put in a time machine and catapulted to the past without being informed. Luckily some of the commenters were pointing out the unjust nature of what can only be called ‘slut shaming’ , but the fact that high profile journalists, and female ones at that, were writing such drivel is incredibly disappointing, not to mention incredibly unhelpful. These articles constantly want to remind us of Taylor’s past boyfriend’s and flings in a way that suggest they believe her number of exes to be too high. The fact of the matter is though, if someone is single, but extremely appealing as a potential date or partner like Taylor, it is fairly likely they are going to continue to form new relationships following on from a split. When I see the back catalogue of males we are told Taylor has dated since her relationships with Joe Jonas, it feels fairly modest compared to many of the numbers some of my friends have racked up. When you date and explore relationships you are working out what you want and don’t want out of a team mate, trying them on for size to a degree, and sometimes they just don’t fit. It seems fair dos to me that you should move on and keep working out what and who you want out of life and try and find someone that fits a bit better. You have to be incredibly lucky to find that first time…if ever. You also have to take into the account the dating scene in America which is very different to us over here…it’s far more acceptable to be dating a few people at a time until it’s made exclusive.

I also want to remind people that Taylor was in her teen/early twenties during a lot of these high profile relationships. Yes, in some ways she’s probably grown up faster than the average due to the business she’s in, and due to her clear work ethic and ambition which will have lead her to spending a lot of her life surrounded with older people - much of her entry into adulthood dealing very grown up decisions and situations. However, in many way’s she will have had an affected or even stunted her adulthood, her celebrity status no doubt effecting the ease of forming honest and equal relationships. For people to form such harsh and damning based on her love life during her early twenties feels grossly unfair to me. These are the years we are consistently learning about ourselves, with major setback and triumphs regularly punctuating. If we don’t truly know who we are or who we want to be how the bloody hell can we be sure what we want in a partner. To me it feels fairly inevitable that during this age some of us will make poor choices or be tempted by some unsuitable characters, but my in my case at least, scrambling with these bad eggs was helpful in my quest for healthy love.

Taylor has always been the artist parents have been happy for their kids to listen to. She was always deemed a better role model, in comparison to the likes of Rihanna for example. Perhaps Taylor’s love life and the media with publicises it in this rather old fashioned ‘she get’s around’ way upsets the people who looked to Taylor to be an angelic guide to their offspring. There’s numerous holes in this too….First there’s the assumption she’s sleeping with all the men listed in these articles time-lining her track record - we don’t know, and nor should we. But if she was/has then what the heck is wrong with that? If the woman in question has a healthy view of sex, and doesn’t see it as something she has to do to feel validated, but simply enjoys it, what would be the issue if she was having sex with multiple people, let alone having sex with one person she is dating at that point in time.

Another thing that irked me was the unfounded assumption that because she’s ‘gone through’ a few high profile boyfriends that she must be a nightmare, hard to live with, needy, high maintenance and so on…. Why do people instantly assume that her behaviour or character has been the fuel for the deterioration in the relationship? When you look at some of the men in her past they have had just as many other partners in their love timelines, yet we don’t assume they are difficult to date. Another double standard.

My last thought is that people often prefer a victim, an underdog. She’s beautiful, she’s rich, she’s talented, but ‘aww she can’t keep a man’. It’s as though people needed that blip on her Gold-star, A —list life to feel like they relate to her. They feel more affection for someone that has been wronged, needs looking after, or tragic in some way - because they are things that happen to us normal folk and prove that she’s not this invisible, perfect human. You’d think we could be inspired by her strength, and ability to move on. Our response makes it feel like we’d rather she fester in post break-up grief.

By now she is a PR pro, and will know how to manipulate certain things to suit her ambitious plans.  Whatever the truth is and whatever the media mist is, no one should have to sacrifice happiness or love, or be made to feel bad for wanting to ensure their life is filled with it.

According to Calvin ‘She’s just doing her thing’….I say, carry on girl.


P.S Hope you understand this article was not written to wade in on something which should be a private matter, but because I think it provides a reason to talk about a wider problem. 

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Thursday, 16 June 2016

Throwing Shade VS Having an Opinion


This is another one of those posts that I’ve delayed or given up on in previous attempts. I guess the fear of being taken the wrong way, or perceived as negative nancy has put me off….which is in essence the crux of the content of this post.

The blogging/YouTube world has seen a fair bit of argy-bargy lately. There’s been blogs shared around social media of posts calling out other bloggers for things they have or haven’t done. There’s been mardy tweets or comments that single out certain influencers, without actually naming them, but being descriptive enough that the majority of people immersed in the industry would easily be able to decipher who they’re talking about. There’s been a lot of comments made about the YouTube community as a whole also nestled within Vlogs too. We’ve become sadly accustomed to unfair and sometimes frankly disgusting comments from a small minority of YouTube commenters, but this is a different thing all together, this is bloggers/YouTubers turning on/challenging members of their own community. Isn’t this behaviour incredibly disloyal to a community who are already having to bat away frequent criticism and misconceptions from those on the outside?

But do some of the commentators and their seemingly negative opinions have validity? I couldn’t help but wonder…


I love seeing other women do well. I love to see them succeed but also applauded for their achievements, and I will admit to feeling a particular thrill when it’s within an industry or environment that has previously been, or is currently deemed male dominated. However, I don’t buy into the idea that we should support all women (the way they behave or think) no matter what, with no questions asked. To me that suggests that we don’t have the ability to be challenged, that we are absent of confidence in our point of views, or lacking in mental strength to fight for what we believe. It could also falsely connote that as a sex we are unable to take criticism or admit faults in our character, mindset or thought process. I’ve made, and almost made, some very foolish decisions in my time, but I’m very grateful that I was, and continue to be called out on them by my girlfriends. I may not have enjoyed the experience of my mistakes being highlighted at the time, but my goodness am I glad that they were willing to bring them to my attention.

Perhaps I inadvertently stumbled on something there... Is it the fact that it’s not our friends pointing out these issues/potential flaws, why we feel so up in arms about it. Is it the fact that although fellow bloggers, they are still relative strangers, and we feel that they have no right to offer up opinions on things we've not invited them to give input on. Hmmmm....I digress
I feel like we are heading towards a climate where having an opinion isn’t accepted, and that having one (particularly if it challenges a much loved influencer) instantly puts you in the bitter or bitchy category. Yes, lots of people expressing these opinions are coming from a place of jealousy, venom, or in a quest of the attention that inevitably follows a provocative tweet. However, some are merely flagging up issues or worrying developments within the industry which actually need some attention - like many of the big YouTubers not clearly stating when their video is an AD for example. (To be fair though, the rules confuse the hell out of me too, so i'm sure I'm not alone!)
I personally feel the terms ‘throwing shade’ is being used too readily. We should be just as careful about accusing people of throwing shade as we should be of well…actually throwing shade.

I can't stand the notion that any person would feel stifled of an opinion, but us girls should feel particularly wary of this, particularly as we have fought so very hard to be able to have an opinion that people actually get to know about!


So instead maybe we need think about how these opinions are voiced. I think the main issue stems from the lack of fairness within the arguments, the lack of judgement and measure in their approach to expressing or forming of their opinions. Sometimes the people that post or upload these bold statements haven’t considered all sides of the given topic, and more frustratingly are not willing to listen and accept those that wish to respond to them and attempt an adult debate. There there’s one’s that are completely senseless, cruel and unjust…but they don’t even warrant discussion here as they just get a simple ‘STOP IT’ from me. But conversation and debate is such a necessary practice is a world swarming with different cultures, points of views and situations, so I just think we need to pause for thought before we hurry in with our forceful comments. After-all most of these issues are complicated and convoluted, with no clear-cut right or wrong. And you should never assume to know all the facts, even as a viewer who has watched every one of that person's videos.

Recently I have seen a lot of people getting offended and puffed up about the YouTubers and Bloggers who produce high-end content, featuring designer goods and luxury holidays - citing it as un-relatable, wasteful or extravagant. Like those tweeting critics I too worry that young and impressionable kids will gain an unrealistic vision of what life is or should be like. That eventually they’ll feel a lacking, or that their life is inferior, if they are unable to emulate the slightly ‘unrealistic’ lifestyle they have been watching, portrayed by their favourite influencers. However I watch reality shows like Made In Chelsea and The Rich Kids of Beverly Hills, and yes, okay occasionally I feel pangs of jealousy when they go on shopping sprees or head to St, Barts (for some arguments), but the overriding thing I get out of watching them is pure escapism. I zone out of my daily stresses and get wonderfully lost in their luxurious lives, which are so very different and alien to mine - like watching another species on a David Attenborough show, it’s viewed with a level of fascination. In this terrifying and heartbreaking world we find ourselves in, escapism is incredibly valuable and it’s actually very important we have these online destinations that are capable of transporting us to more frivolous worlds...just so that we can forget for a few minutes. 

What saddens me most about these particular comments is that they are taking the joy out of someones success. Okay some people have been relatively lucky, but most of successful bloggers have been working their botties off to get where they are and to reach the point where they find themselves in a position where they are invited on amazing trips or making enough money to buy some lovely things. It’s their money, and theirs to spend however they wish, whether that be more frequent hauls at Primark or a splurge on a designer bag in Selfridges. 

If you are looking at their content with positivity firmly in mind you could deduce that their content is aspirational, that it may encourage others to work hard  in pursuit of living a similarly luxe life. If you are less inclined to see the best though you could be forgiven for worrying that it is encouraging people to pursue YouTube (over other career avenues) because they deem it a fast-track route to financial reward.

Essentially the point I’m making is there’s usually a lot of grey matter, and I can often see merits in both side of the debate, so I think it’s important we always try and gain a well rounded understanding. If we really feel a need to weigh in on the subject, do so in way that is helpful. I’d like to see people come in peace, but in pursuit of educating, or encouraging healthy conversation. Maybe doing it privately over email may be be a nicer approach. There's something about the public nature of these damning blog posts and tweets that makes it feel too much like an attack.

I hate that anyone should be made to feel bad or less-than because of the content they make. Everything is valid, and there is room for every style of video on YouTube - how dull it would be if we all created the same content. So choose who you subscribe to according to your preferences and  try not to get mad if their content changes over time - remember they are growing up and evolving as humans, and it's quite natural for interests and goals to change. Please also remember this is their job and they should be able to produce content that allows them to maintain their chosen lifestyle, whatever shape that comes in. If your interests and preferences no longer match or you don't gel with them like you once did, maybe there's no need to tell them so. Why not have a gander round YouTube, as I guarantee there is another creater on who can tick the boxes for you.

As the YouTubers and bloggers grow and change, the platforms and what they provide for the authors and uploaders alters too. Blogging, at least when it began, was an outlet for us...a whizz kid verson of a diary for many. It was a place they could vent, outpour, and say whatever the heck they wanted…with fairly a low risk of repercussions. These days with Twitter, and certain YouTube Gossip sites, and the huge following you can have on your outlets, the things you say can spread like a toxic weed or ray of sunshine, depending on the nature of the words.

My problem has always been that I’m a people pleaser, I don’t like to cause a fuss or ruffle feathers. My friends, family and bf are constantly telling me off for being a doormat who does’n’t tell people what they think even when they really really deserve or need to hear it. This means I’m one of these people that allows frustrations to bubble under the surface, sometimes to the level where my eyes sting and a red blotchy rash travels from my chest to my neck. Back before blogging was a career or something that could go viral, I could blog merely as an attempt to relieve myself and sometimes I would even find a resolution through the process of writing down the conundrum or issue.

These days if the problem isn’t involving Simon of course, then my boyfriend is probably the one that has to deal with those rage filled rants or woe-is-me wobbles. I feel like even Twitter isn’t a space I can truly say what I think anymore, as I can’t help but worry how my honest and somewhat hasty tweets may be received by current or potential employers, or that my family themed brain farts may be discovered by my mother when she does her random google searches of me. But the things I want to vent about are largely about the people who are most active on social media, so being frank puts me at serious risk of causing a kerfuffle, and actually making things a lot harder for myself in this already cliquey industry.


So, I certainly feel like my freedom of speech is somewhat hindered at the moment. I’ve found myself self-censoring, deleting tweets before I press the post button, and editing chunks of very real talk out of my vlogs. Should I just just accept that that’s just the way things are, and continue to play it safe and keep my views to myself? Or should I be that person to speak out when I think something important needs to be said, and run the risk of people making the assumption that I’m bitter or jealous? I’m a scaredy cat, so this blog post may well be the extent of my opinion posts for a while....

So I guess I’m generally backing up what most people are saying on the topic. Congratulate and cheer as much as possible, but more importantly when it’s deserved. Support and encourage your fellow bloggers, as you well know how hard it really is to grow and succeed in this industry. Don’t be needlessly negative, but if you really feel something needs to be said do so in a pleasant, mature and and intelligent manner. Don’t do yourself a disservice either…After-all how awful it would be if a blogger were deemed as horrid as a pesky troll.

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Tuesday, 14 June 2016

OUTFIT POST: METAL HAMMER GOLDEN GODS AWARDS


Last night I attended my first ever Metal Hammer Golden Gods Award. It's not usually something I can face after a weekend of getting soggy at Download Festival, but as I didn't attend this year I had a bit of juice left in the tank for a quick jaunt to Hammersmith Apollo.


As I've never attended I didn't really know how to dress for the occasion, my last minute decision to go didn't help matters either. I had a quick google of past awards and it quickly became clear than really absolutely anything goes. Which is the way it should always be, quite frankly!

But this isn't a fashion event, although a nice excuse to put a bit more effort in, this is a night to celebrate established, legendary, and emerging bands in the world of rock and metal. 

When I was waiting for my pals - I always arrive uncooly early to EVERYTHING - I was witness to some spectacular entranaces from some of the night's nominees and perfomers. There were marching vikings making extremely gruff and masculine noises before treading the carpet, as well as fully made up males who decided that arriving in a hearse was more befitting for the occasion than an Uber.


Other faces from the world of metal and music that were spotted being interviewed and papped on the carpet included New Years Day, Dave Mustaine, Asking Alexandria (minus a few members) and Creeper. Stu and Lee from No Devotion were also in attendance (who were recently awarded with Best Album at the Kerrnag! Awards, woohoo). 

I actually had a quick natter with Hannah and Dan from Creeper, who appeared to be completely overwhelmed with the reaction the band is getting. They couldn't believe they already have an award for Best Newcomer (from the Kerrangs!) and that they were up for an award tonight, as well as at the APMA's. Nice to see people so humble, but still embracing the wonderful things that are happening. They seem particuarly excited about being able to attend the APMA'S, which is not something many  UK bands of their size get to do! These guys are destined for huge things, and part of an onslought of new and incredibly exciting UK bands. Trust me, music is really promising right now...that's hope the industry doesn't make it hard for them to succeed, and flourish to the level they deserve though.

The first peformance I caught came from Swedish giants Amon Amarth, who put on a fantastic display with fire and all the OTT theatrics and costumes you could ever want. Who knew I'd dig Viking Metal...it definitely did something for me.


Halestorm's Izzy proved that she was worthy of the Dimebag Darrell Shredder award by putting on a completely badass performance, featuring an impressively sustained high pitched scream. She did it all in the most beautiful sparkly silver heels too. What a woman. 

It was fantastic to see the incredibly talented Caleb Shomo pick up the award for Breakthrough band. Beartooth's new album is a belter and cements their prominent position in the scene. 

Gojira was introduced by one of the hosts as the best band in the world, and basically indiciated that anyone wanting to form a band shouldn't bother unless they're as good as them. Big claims...
Whatever my view in terms of their position in the hierachy they put on a bloody great performance.

Quite rightly the night paid heavy tribute to an absent legend. Motorhead's Lemmy has always been an icon of this scene. In fact he was always an appointed representative and face of metal to those that don't/didn't have any interest of clue about heavy music too.

Unfortunately, I had to head to the train station before the climax of the evenings proceedings, but I was informed that there was hefty and right-on musical tribute to the legendary man performed by Saxon, Mikey Dee and Phil Campbell.

That's about all I can impart from my evening at the Hammersmith Apollo but here are the rest of the awards victors.

The Winners
Best New Band - Creeper
Best Underground - Enslaved
Best UK Band - Asking Alexandria
Best International Band - Ghost
Breakthrough - Beartooth
Best Live Band - Lamb Of God
Best Independent Label - Prosthetic Records
Dimebag Darrell 'Shredder' - Lzzy Hale
Best Album - 'The Book Of Souls' Iron Maiden
Riff Lord - Phil Campbell
Inspiration - Anthrax
Icon - Nikki Sixx
Global Metal Band - Chthonic
Golden God - Joey Jordison
Best Video - Parkway Drive

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Monday, 13 June 2016

JENN IM X GRUNGE - BEAUTY TUTORIAL

A few weeks ago my pal and superstar YouTuber Jenn Im sent me beautiful care package containing the products from her collaboration with Colourpop Cosmetics, cleverly named Jenn Ne Sais Quois - I love a good play on words! 

If you follow my channel you will have seen a first impressions video where I swatched the quad of eyeshadows, as well as the three stunning lip products. I ended up having a lot of requests to create some beauty looks using the products, and I tend to do as I'm told....

So first up is a grunge eye using the all four of the eyeshadows in the quad...

Watch the video below if you want to see how I created the look in the piccies below....
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MENSWEAR OUTFIT POST: KERRANG! AWARDS 2016


So last Thursday was the Kerrang! Awards....how is it that time of year again?  For the last four years I have been on the black carpet interviewing the artists on their way in, as well as after they've receieved their awards, and then enjoying a bit of the after-party before realising that bed is far more appealing than trying to avoid embarrassing myself in front of bands I do and don't know. 

This year I didn't attend as Relentless are no longer the sponsors, and I have always been kindly invited by them to carry our press duties. It was fine though because Si wasn't due to be going either so we were looking forward to a stress free Thursday in our slouchwear at home...catching up on Bloodlines or something or rather on Netflix. Then Si gets a Whatsapp telling him that he's now going. So as well as foiling our chill plans we now had not very long to make sure Si was looking slick and sharp for his night at one of the biggest music parties of the year. I had a last minute scram to see if I could wangle a pass so I could enjoy the night with him too, but to no avail. Probably a blessing as I had absolutely nothing to wear!

Si wasn't performing, getting up on stage, or nominated this time round, so there was no need to go full pelt when it came to his outfit, but he did want to look a bit different to 'everyday Si.' Seeing that he may be on the cusp of a flap, I asked if he'd like me to sort his outfit out. 

Many moons ago I used to work as a stylist and stylist assistant. I gave it up for many reasons. Not being based in London made it tricky because I'd have to personally pick up and drop back all the samples at the shops and PR offices. When you work at a mag in London or have a budget, you generally use couriers to do this, but instead I was lugging multiple suitcases and suit bags around the city. Thisis tiring for any human, let alone one with a fatigue illness. I also got very tired of the treatment I got as a stylist assistant at times. Getting treated or spoken to in an unfair and belittling manner when you are getting barely anyn money became something I wasn't willing to put up with. This wasn't always the case of course, but I certainly did work for a few stylists who were on the slightly difficult end of the spectrum. I remember one time a photographer came to my defense and told the stylist to stop going all Devil Wears Prada on me. 

In the last few years I've helped on a few shoots for Cheer Up Clothing,  a few people with the odd bit of styling or gifting and my friends enlist me as their personal shopper, but that's as far as it goes. 

I've worked on a couple menswear shoots in my time, one for 125 magazine and another for an NME cover, and I actually enjoyed it just as much as the female shoots, so I was rather pleased that Si gave me permission to dress him up for his night at the Kerrang! Awards.
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Thursday, 9 June 2016

A night with Kourtney Kardashian and Manuka Doctor


This week has been an odd one - one that has taken me from a metal gig (Deftones) to mingling with the finacially gifted at the Polo. Wednesday saw me join an intimate crowd to watch some Punk Pop icons BLINK 182 play a show in Kingston, and last night night I was sipping mocktails in a swish hotel suite with Kourtney Kardashian. Life as a blogger is bizarre at times. You can't say my life isn't varied though!

Even before going up to the hotel suite in the London Editions Hotel you could tell someone of media importance was in town. Outside the entrance there was a considerable amount of people loitering, many accessoried with cameras sporting professionally lenses. It's fairly intimidating to walk past at the best of times, but more so when you're a non heel wearer daring to wear heels for the occasion, and even more so when you're a person  that managed to fall down a whole flight of stairs at the train station. There's a small chance I may have managed to look like I've got my stuff together and rather used to the glamorous life - little do they know that I leaned on an alarmingly stained wall a street along to change from my comfy flip flips into my very uncomfortable heels.
 I remember a past swanky event when I had to pass the waiting papps I heard one say 'Is she anyone?" (referring to me) and hearing another papp reply 'Naa mate"....which is something every girl can't hear enough! 

Tonight's soiree was to celebrate the launch of their new global brand ambassador, Kourtney Kardashian, who would be in attendance all night with invited guests...inlcuding me...how did that happen?

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