Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Chocolate Fudge Cupcakes!

I have a massively sweet tooth with my two favourite things being fudge and chocolate so when I discovered a fudge icing recipe that went perfectly in my already much loved chocolate cake recipe so you can only imagine my excitement. This recipe is also not too sickly and very very simple using the 'all in one method' which is great!

175g Butter
150g Caster Sugar
1tbsp Golden Syrup
5tbsp Milk
150g Self Raising Flour
25g Cocoa Powder

Fudge Icing-
50g Butter 
2tbsp Milk
2tbsp Soft Brown Sugar
1Tbsp Golden Syrup
200g Icing Sugar
I started off by making the fudge icing by placing the butter, milk, brown sugar and syrup into a saucepan and melting it on a low heat until there were no lumps and everything was combined.
I then poured this mixture into a bowl and stirred in the icing sugar into a smooth consisitency.

I then left this to cool in the fridge and set whilst the cakes cooked and cooled.

Preheat the oven to 180c 

I started making the cupcakes by measuring all the ingredients into one big bowl and mixed them all together into a lump free, glossy consistency. Make sure to sieve the cocoa powder and flour otherwise it can be grainy!  Then the mix is done told you it was easy!!

I then put two teaspoons of mixture into the cases and cooked for 30-35 minutes.

Once cooled, i stirred the fudge a tiny bit, don't stir it too much otherwise it returns to its previous run y state which will just run off the cakes. I then iced the cakes and severed with strawberrys!



Tuesday, 28 June 2016

The Best Of: Soap & Glory

Soap & Glory makeup may be my favourite in the drugstore, it's such good quality for a reasonable price and I find nearly every product I have tried just works well on my skin leading to this big huge oversized collection (this isn't all of them) I have more than anyone needs, however, it does lead to me being a quite fair judge of what is fab out of their range.

Kick Ass All Is Calm Concealer- A green concealer! Yes, you read it right, you aren't going crazy! I absolutely love this, it's one of my most recent purchase and i was very happy when this came out as I have terrible redness on my cheeks from scarring of blemishes which always bothers me whenever I am doing a full face of makeup, I apply it after foundation, then before blending it out I put a normal concealer on the top. A little goes a long way so I have no idea how I am going to get through this mammoth stick but also means I can't even tell I have another product on my face. There is also one for dark circles and a couple of others but I only have this due to this being my main problem area.

Lid Stuff- I don't actually think you can buy this as a palette as I got it in a Christmas gift set however I am not quite sure. However, you can buy quads of your favourite colours or go all out and buy a palette of ten. These colours are perfect for me as I am always swapping between a gold and a pink eye. The formulation is gorgeous, they feel so creamy to apply and blend out effortlessly and would actually say they are equal to MAC eyeshadows in pigmentation and blend ability, they also last a very long time, the mattes longer than shimmers and last all day and night with a good eye primer.

Smoulder Kohl- This again came in a Christmas gift set and I swear I haven't stopped using it since then, it is so creamy and easy to blend out so perfect for beneath the eye and on top but is also waterproof and even with my extremely watery eyes can last a fair few hours on my water/tight line.

Supercat Eyeliner- If you have read my posts for a while or my Top 5 Eyeliner Post (linked here) then you probably would have gathered this is up there with my all time favourite products, it is so black, lasts an incredibly long time, easy to apply and is cheap as chips! I don't think any drugstore eyeliner will be able to defeat this and that's a bloody bold statement for me!

Solar Powder - This is the perfect shade for my skin, it gives a gorgeous glow however I find it really weird the lighter shade has run out quicker when I swirl my brush around over both. This lasts a very long time and doesn't go muddy which is always something I struggle with when using drugstore bronzers. This also can give the effect of contouring but is a lot easier as its more buildable than bam there's the colour.

Love at First Blush - When I first used this I wasn't overly keen on it and seemed to make my cheeks look a bit strange however I found with a nude lip this just gives such a fresh faced glow however I haven't even made a dent in it as you only need the tiniest bit. This is the perfect blush for summer and minimal makeup.

Glow All Out Cream Highlight- I am OBSESSED with this! I mentioned it in my favourite contour and highlight post and still haven't stopped using it. This is how to achieve a glow, sometimes I wish I could just cover my face in it as it just makes me look so much more awake and gives a beautiful dewy look to the skin even if the rest of the face is matte! I won't go too much into as i wrote loads  in my previous post.

Sexy Mother Pucker Matte Lip- And... The final product is these gorgeous lipsticks. These are enough more recent Soap and Glory release and can we just appreciate they are around £4! If you haven't tried them like where have you been! The formula goes on so creamy then dries matte but doesn't dry out my lips and the shade range is gorgeous mine are- Pretty Muted, Chocoberry and Fire Cracker.


Sunday, 26 June 2016

Top Products Your Skin Needs This Summer | Smooth & Tanned

Now it's summer like most others as the sun is out its time to get a bit more skin out and although I never worry too much if I am a bit too pale or anything like that I do go through a few steps that I find help my bod look the best it can be including the hair removal, scrubs, creams and self-tan that save me through summer as no matter what size or shape I think these products make anyone feel confident.

Hair Removal
Personally, I am a big fan of epilating as it doesn't have to be done as regularly as shaving which is great as I find it such a chore and I also find hairs grow back a lot finer. Although this hurts a LOT the first time, after a bit your skin builds up a pain thresh hold and gets used to it meaning now I can't even really feel anything at all, however, it does take perseverance to not constantly wish to go back to shaving in those first agonising moments.

Scrubs by Soap and Glory, I think have to be the best scrubs in the drugstore, I love so many of them but by far The Breakfast scrub is my all time favourite! It smells like biscuits, and is quite sweet but also has undertones of fruit so isn't too sickly, I use this about once a week on elbows, knees e.t.c. especially before fake tanning as it makes my skin feel extremely smooth. 

Sun Cream
Although we all love the thought of getting a tan, it's very bad for the skin so I can never be without suncream when the sun comes out. I don't burn and it takes a lot for me to tan which I find quite strange so it took me a while to get into the routine of using a sun cream however it is a very important thing to remember. I still don't seem to remember it as I forgot to take a photo of it oops! #bloggerfail.

Fake Tan
So as I said earlier most of us love the thought of a tan and what's better than the safer option of fake tan, personally I am not a big fan of instant tanners as I have fears of looking like an orange so I stick to gradual tans, the L'Oreal Summer Glow Lotion is my personal favourite at the moment as it gives a subtle tan that builds up over a week to the perfect natural colour but also has a slight shimmer making a lovely healthy glow to the skin.

I hate feet, they just never look nice but never the less we still have to look after the little things, I recently got the Scholl Foot Buffer thing (can't remember the name sorry!) which just makes the feet a lot smoother although it was expensive at around £40 I hate the feeling of rough hard skin so this is perfect. To follow this I use yet another Soap and Glory product *surprise surprise* Heel Genius which keeps my feet really soft and for that reason, I can get through the feeling of it on my feet as it's really slimy which I know some people would hate so bear that in mind but I love the soft feeling in the morning after leaving it on my feet all night


Thursday, 23 June 2016

The Make-up Products Everyone Needs To Own!

Holy grail must have products, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser, MAC Lipsticks, Benefit Hoola Bronzer, MAC Amber Lights Eyeshadow, Soap and Glory Glow All Out Cream Highlight, Highlight and Contour, Primer, Highend and Drugstore Makeup, Beauty blogger, Makeup , Flowers, Photography, Beauty, Products, Katielou99
I am forever sharing products I have been loving within all kinds of posts however I thought I have never done a post a long the lines of holy grails or go to must own products that you have to try so I thought why not do a little round up, causing me to look through every part of my collection leading to me finding the products for this post and a lot of others I had completely forgot about *hint hint about future post*. So here are the products you must own!
Holy grail must have products, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser, MAC Lipsticks, Benefit Hoola Bronzer, MAC Amber Lights Eyeshadow, Soap and Glory Glow All Out Cream Highlight, Highlight and Contour, Primer, Highend and Drugstore Makeup, Beauty blogger, Makeup , Flowers, Photography, Beauty, Products, Katielou99
The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser- It is not an exaggeration when I say the Tea Tree range from The Body Shop has saved my skin going from face might as well have been made from blemishes instead of skin to only the occasional breakout and this is one of the products that really made a difference. I apply this after moisturiser before foundation as a primer as it makes my skin a bit tacky and makes foundation application smoother. This also helped to reduce blemishes as while my makeup was on my face it was fighting spots and providing a barrier to stop foundation going into my pores which consequentially means less spots for me. YAY! Apart from the blemish helping I also find my makeup lasts a lot longer and the product itself lasts a very long time to use up.

Rimmel Brow this Way- I had been longing for Benefit Gimme Brow for quite a while but thought as I had never used a brow gel before it was a bit pointless to spend a lot of money if I didn't like it but after trying this I don't even feel as if I need to buy anything more expensive. I use this after I have filled in my brows with powder to set them in place, I don't really have unruly hairs but it's great for an occasional one but I only use a tiny amount and is great for making brows lasts longer. At around £4 its so affordable and I have often worn it on its own if I am in a rush however I do prefer a fuller brow.

MAC Eyeshadow- I don't know where these eyeshadows have been all my life! I am sure you have heard a lot about these everywhere but seriously they are so good and finally I can join in with the hype and understand why so many people use them. I have mine in Amber Lights which is the perfect colour for Autumn however as its so gorgeous I use it all year around. The pigmentation is gorgeous and the formula blends out effortlessly, I also find I only need the smallest amount on the brush so can tell this little pan will last me an eternity! The only downside is the price at £13 so maybe one if you want a little treat.

Holy grail must have products, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser, MAC Lipsticks, Benefit Hoola Bronzer, MAC Amber Lights Eyeshadow, Soap and Glory Glow All Out Cream Highlight, Highlight and Contour, Primer, Highend and Drugstore Makeup, Beauty blogger, Makeup , Flowers, Photography, Beauty, Products, Katielou99
Benefit Hoola Bronzer- I put this in my favourite contour and highlight post last week (here) and can't believe I didn't buy it sooner. It is the perfect shade for paler skin tones and isn't too orange or too cool toned it also lasts well on the skin. The brush is brilliant too which is a bonus!

MAC Lipsticks- I think MAC have a shade or formula to suit everyone whether playing it safe or going a bit more out there. All the ones I have tried have lasted an incredibly long time on the lips and have amazing pigmentation. but i won't ramble on too long as I know you have all heard it before.

Holy grail must have products, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser, MAC Lipsticks, Benefit Hoola Bronzer, MAC Amber Lights Eyeshadow, Soap and Glory Glow All Out Cream Highlight, Highlight and Contour, Primer, Highend and Drugstore Makeup, Beauty blogger, Makeup , Flowers, Photography, Beauty, Products, Katielou99
Soap And Glory Glow All Out- This is my most recent purchase of all these and instantly fell in love with it, the cream formula is easy to blend and lasts a very long time despite my oily skin. The colour is a gorgeous champagne with a gorgeous glitter which captures the light emphasising the cheek bones. It's also super affordable!

What are your must have products?


Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Favourite Contour and Highlight Duo

Like most, I jumped onto the contour and highlight bandwagon as the effect it gives when done correctly looks amazing however it is a lot more difficult than I first realised with the mammoth task of deciding what product out of the huge army on offer is right for your skin whether it should be cream or powder, the correct shade and then the actual learning to apply it like a pro (that last part I am still trying to master). 

However I think I have finally found two go to, holy grail products that I keep grabbing over any other product and thats Benefit's Hoola Bronzer and Soap and Glory Glow All Out Cream Stick in Ice Shimmer.

I had put off buying Benefit Hoola Bronzer on the fear it wouldn't match my skin tone so at the price I didn't want too waste my money making my ghostly complexion into an orange however I couldn't have been more wrong. I use the brush inside as it is the perfect brush for the cheekbones and then use a smaller brush by Real Techniques if I am going all out contouring my nose or lips. I also love the fact it is matte as I can never get on very well if it has a shimmer, this also lasts all day. 

Onto highlight I apply this Soap and Glory cream to the tops of my cheekbones, beneath my brow bone, centre of nose and cupids bow as it gives a lovely shimmer and attracts the light bringing them out rather than just bits of glitter making me look like a disco ball which I have found with most other highlights especially powder. I find it emphasises the parts of my face I want making my cheeks look fuller. The colour also compliments my skin tone as its a gorgeous champagne and lasts all day which I did not expect as usually cream products don't agree with my ever so oily skin.

What are your Holy Grail Contour and Highlight Products?

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Book Corner: The Girl On The Train Review


Before I started reading The Girl On The Train I was a bit skeptical as I usually head more towards romance or comedy where as this is a psychological thriller but as I had heard such a hype around it and the film that is going to be released I thought I just had to read it especially as I have a lot of spare time since finishing my exams earlier this month.

The story is set from three points of view Rachel (the girl on the train), Megan and Anna which does get a bit confusing at times leading to me having to think who's diary entry I was reading but after about five chapters I got used to it and ended up finishing this book within a week. I was also very glad it was very fast paced with no dull 'pointless' chapters. 

The story is about a girl named Rachel who is commuting to London on the train everyday passing the street she used to live on with her ex before she became an alcoholic and her whole life unraveled. She sees the same houses and people everyday from the window and one couple she focuses on the most, making a whole new story of there life and obsesses over them. However the couple isn't as perfect as they seem when she sees the woman having an affair before seeing on a newspaper she is missing.

And thats where the gripping, mind boggling story begins which I became seriously addicted to as I have never read anything like it before and it has led to me into ordering a whole lot of other books similar to this. So please leave any recommendations below of similar to this or even completely different books.


Thursday, 16 June 2016

The Lipstick I Can't Stop Wearing | YSL

I am obsessed! I received this a week ago for my birthday from my lovely friend and I cannot get over how bloody brilliant it is!

First of all can we appreciate the beauty of the packaging from this alone you can just tell its going to be something special! I had longed for one for a very long time however £26 was just that little bit too much for me to splurge onto myself so when I opened it I was completely shocked and very grateful.

On to the actual product, the colour is gorgeous and such a 'me' colour, a bright pink but on the more red side, it also looks a lot redder in the bullet than when on the lips. I have also been loving a matte lip so this was perfect and I had nothing like it in my collection despite it being a favourite all round before I had even tried it. Even though it is matte it goes on smoothly and doesn't dry my lips out. 

Now onto why I can't stop wearing it not only is the colour gorgeous its the longevity which really stood out for me as the colour lasts all day and when i say all day I mean it, I actually have to physically remove it at the end of the day. Although the actual lipsticks brightness lasts about half a day it leaves a gorgeous stain across the lips so if your like me and always forget to reapply or just can't be bothered a lipstick like this is perfect as I hate it when it wears off especially if its uneven and leaves a line around the lip which is the bain of my life eurgh!

So overall I don't think I have actually tried a lipstick any better and is perfect for the current season!


Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Instagram Diary

I used to see these posts floating around in the blogosphere quite a lot and loved to read whats behind the posts as I often caption my photos only with a url to a blog post or a couple of emojis so I will share the little fun moments of the last month in.

You can find my Instagram at: @katielou_99

1. A beautiful bunch of flowers
2. Birthday- just so no one could forget ;)
4. Tryin' to be all Insta, snapping my breakfast
5. The organisation process of posting three times a week
6. There are so many beautiful reasons to be happy
7. The most chocolatiest, fudgiest  brownie
9. Go to Summer Makeup
10. Throwback to Last Years Holiday
11. Ok... I can't even explain this...
12. When summer is just about to begin

Leave you Insta links below!


Sunday, 12 June 2016

25 Things That Make Me Happy!

I was stuck for ideas of what to post and recently I have felt very, shall we say content with life so to share my positivity I thought I would leave the beauty posts to one side for one Sunday and share my little joys of happiness!

1. Wait for it... The cliche... Family and Friends- How could they not be mentioned!
2. Accomplishment
3. The smell of new books 
4. New Makeup
5. Perfect Winged Eyeliner
6. Quite, idyllic places
7. Beaches
8. Puppies 
9. Or any other small fluffy animal on that note
10. Concerts
11. Shopping 

12. Baking
13. Snuggling up with a warm drink and film
14. Pizza
15. Doughnuts- ok I need to stop on the food front, lets be real I just love food ok!
16. The Summers Sun
17. Freshly painted nails
18. Olly Murs' face
19. An unused lipstick
20. Blogging
21. Flowers
22. Pretty Photos and Looking back at old ones of myself, family and friends with happy memories
23. Wandering around a new place with no aim just exploring
24. Matching underwear - c'mon girls we all love it!
25. Relaxing

What makes you happy?


Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Summer Lips & Nails

 This has become a bit of a tradition every season change here on my blog sharing the lipsticks I think  are perfect du to my slight addiction to trying out new ones, however to mix it up I have added in a couple of nail varnishes too so lets get started!
I think I go on about these too MAC Lipsticks way too much and if you're a regular reader you are probably sick of them but I swear by these. MAC Girl About Town is a solid favourite all summer and if you have blue eyes it really brings them out and I don't really know why and of course being MAC it is known for the amazing longevity and colour pay off in the amplified formula. Secondly MAC Mehr is a definite pick me up colour and if I feel my makeup looks a bit rubbish I feel it makes me look a bit better and is amazing if I am wearing an orange that I usually find hard to pair with a lipstick.

This is a very recent purchase from my new love for matte nude lips, the NYX Soft matte lip creme in the shade Milan is on the more pink side of nude and you can definitely tell its on the lips however isn't too in your face, I would say it was the perfect mix of Girl About Town and Mehr which was just made for me. At only £5.50 its great value for money however doesn't last very long and can't be applied in a rush however it goes on lovely and creamy.

On the nail front I picked out my two go to colours, I usually then apply the Barry M Matte Top Coat on top of these as I have been LOVING the matte nails even if it was so last year. This Essie Polish in Rearrange was a bit daring for me as I usually stick to a nice pink or pinky nude however when I received this in a Mailbox kindly sent to me I fell in love and is an amazing pop of colour to an otherwise bland outfit for instance a white dress and this would be amazing!

I have also been removing an old favourite which I really need to repurchase as its a bit dried up but the Rimmel Polish in Funtime Fuchsia is an amazing pop of pink it also dries in just over 60 seconds which is great for someone as impatient as me as I always put off doing my nails due to more times than not I smudge or chip them within the first ten minutes!

What's your perfect Summer Lip or Nail?


Sunday, 5 June 2016

Blogging Tips

I am in no way a blogging expert but after blogging for over a year I have picked up a few tips I would love to share for anyone wanting to improve or start a blog.
Blogging Tips for the perfect blog including design, contents, photography and social media tips

The Blog

Design- The first thing to do before even starting to post is design your blog, depending on the platform you use e.g. Blogger or Wordpress this step will vary. You could either use a template supplied by the platform, design your own html from scratch ( if your like me then this is an impossible way too technological task) or pay someone else to do it. I personally used a plain white blogger template then googled how to change things in the HTML to personalise it all a bit. There are so many other bloggers there to help as well so don't be shy and it doesn't happen over night i just gradually change things to make it look better and even if you do want it all done before you start posting it will probably take a good few months to perfect. For designing I usually use picmonkey, then carrie loves for HTML or create my own.

Blogging Tips for the perfect blog including design, contents, photography and social media tips


Lighting- Photography has to be one of the most important parts of blogging, as good photography is known to attract more readers, although you don't need to spend hundreds on a expensive camera, the way you take the photos makes a huge difference starting with lighting. I would recommend using natural light, make sure you find a spot where the sun doesn't reflect too much of what you are photographing but also doesn't make the picture to dark. A light room does the trick or maybe invest in some studio lights if you take your photos later in the day.

Backgrounds- This makes the picture pretty, as even if you have the prettiest focal point lets say of a highend lipstick but the background was an untidy bedroom the picture won't be as nice as it could be. Think about what to put behind the item, but make sure its not too empty or too full. 
Try using flowers, magazines or other items similar to what you are photographing e.g. eyeshadow brush with a eyeshadow palette.

If you would like to know more photography tips let me know in the comments.


Ideas- Make sure you write blogposts that will attract an audience and they will enjoy, however don't just make posts rambling away about nothing you enjoy even if you think your audience will for instance if you hate fashion but love reading don't write about fashion just because its popular. Try and go for posts you personally would click on to read but also be original. For inspiration I usually take a look in magazines, on social medias such as Pinterest then other blogs for tags that are currently popular.

Being Yourself- Making sure your posts are original and being yourself will make your blog stand out. Show your personality, make a few jokes, just do what you like. If someone says something about what you say or do just ignore them and carry on, in the long run your personality will show people you are real. 

Blogging Tips for the perfect blog including design, contents, photography and social media tips


Engage with readers and fellow bloggers- More than likely readers will comment if they enjoy the post *hint hint* aha  therefore replying improves your relationship and keeps readers coming back ( I hope you do!) You can also make more traffic by commenting on other peoples blogs if you leave a small link to your blog (maybe try it now) ok i really need to stop this self promo now! The link I use in the comments is actually using a HTML as a link can't be left in blogger without it, just insert your blog link where mine are!

<a href=""></a>

Finally... Be Friendly!

What tips do you have for blogging or are you starting out?


Thursday, 2 June 2016

May Favourites

I think I must say this in all of my favourites posts and I'm sure every other blogger and there mom says it but this year is flying by, I don't know if its because i'm older or what but it feels like yesterday everyone was ready for christmas however one good thing is there are a lot of favourite posts so lets get going!

Maybelline The Nudes Palette- I have had this since summer last year but never really got into using it too much however recently I have been loving it the pigmentation of the matte shades is unbelievable for the £10 price tags however the shimmer shades do wear off the matte shades make up for it as the perfect crease colour.

Natural Collection Eyeshadow- I was in need of a base white to make colours such as gold pop but didn't want to spend to much money as it was only for underneath but I was so surprised at how lovely the formula was and the pigmentation, for £1.99 it was a complete bargain!

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Milan- I only bought this about two days ago but I fell in love instantly although the longevity isn't as good as something you may get for more money the formula is very lightweight and applies lovely also the colour is a lovely dusky 'all year round' pink colour that is also quite muted. For £5.50 it is well worth the money and after a few compliments I may be addicted to yet another lip product. Boots here I come!

L'Oreal Summer Glow Lotion- This is an amazing gradual tan, despite not being a big user of fake tan and prefer to just be natural this is brilliant, I wanted to tan my legs for a summer dress I recently wore (see post here) and it didn't go patchy which is very unusual as I am no expert and with one application I already had a natural glow to my skin and felt as if that was enough as it just made my skin look overall more healthy and not the typical 'orange' fake tan look.
 Rose Gold Aviators - Ok lets just put it out there, these sunglasses were £2 like seriously?! As soon as I saw the huge mass of sunglasses hanging up in Primark I knew summer was coming and tried on all sorts leaving with three pairs however these are by far my favourite and have wore them overtime theres a peep of sunshine.

Pandora Flower ring- I received this for my birthday last year and only ever bring it out in the summer so again I am absolutely loving it! Although its quite expensive I have been wearing a lot!

What have you been loving this month?