Graduating University

I finally graduated! Although I finished university at the end of October last year, for some reason my uni waits a veryyyy long time to do the ceremony. So, eight months later, I found myself in a world of strange formalities, a shit load of boring speeches and So. Many. Photos.

I was very lucky – one of my best friends has been in New York on exchange and turned up after the ceremony which completely surprised me! All my friends came and saw me accept that damn expensive piece of paper and I felt very loved by all. Although uni wasn’t the best time of my life, I’m very proud of myself for pushing through the workload, the lack of money – the general existentialism and panic that comes from being at uni, and walked on that stage and took that award. Education is not something ANYONE can take away from you, and now I am proudly part of UNSW Alumni. {cont}

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Sitting in that seat waiting for my turn to go up on stage was long. I found myself getting nervous and I’m still not sure why. I barely knew anyone here. I hadn’t been to the uni in months. I already have a post-graduate job. Still, that familiar feeling of being at uni was overwhelming, and I was acutely reminded of how much I used to worry that I’d never get anywhere, that I’d never finish or succeed. Sitting there, watching name after name being called really taught me just how much I CAN do it, and did. I wasn’t nervous about getting up on stage in front of all those people. I was nervous because I’d surprised myself. {cont}

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If you are currently in university or are thinking of going, take this as my message. You CAN do it. Although you may skip classes, get drunk before work and cry yourself to sleep for at least a couple of nights out of it, no one and nothing can take away the fact that you, are now or will be, the owner of a degree. It is thanks to you and no one else. Head down and keep going like I did, and you will come out the other end a completely different person but oh so much better for the experience.

Zoe x

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Graduating University

My 21st Birthday

I’m 21! My birthday was June 5, and although turning 21 doesn’t mean much in Australia, I took a few days to celebrate making it this far and thought I’d share it with you.

With my best friend and my mum, we took off to the Gold Cost in QLD, where, although it’s winter, it was warm enough to swim and be in the sun. We had cocktails, beautiful lunches, played putt putt golf (which I won), went to the Star casino and won $50 on roulette, visited Dreamworld theme park and went to this cool holographic place that had a holographic planetarium.

The weekend afterward, I also had some drinks with friends in the city and saw my family for a delicious lunch.

Enjoy the photos!

We stayed at the Hilton Residences in QLD and had this amazing view!

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If you’re anything like me, a night of cheese, rose and a shitty movie is perfect.

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Cuddles for mumma bear x

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Way too much good food!

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A selection of photos of me drinking in different locations

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Staying humble

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Back in Sydney, here I am at The Grounds of Alexandria…

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Ucello Italian Restaurant in Sydney is absolutely stunning but needs a bit of work on their spelling haha!

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Out for drinks with friends in this Boohoo playsuit and F21 boots

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So, in conclusion, happy birthday to me!

 

Zoe x

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My 21st Birthday

May Favourites 2017

I know it was only a couple of weeks ago that I got around to posting my April favourites, but this month I’m on time, so we’re going to go with it haha.

I’ve actually been loving quite a few things in May and I can’t wait to share them with you. Let me know if you’ve been loving any of the same things!

Elf Face Powder

It can’t be a favourites on this blog without mentioning an Elf product it seems… I got this recently and I really like it! A finely milled powder in nice packaging, and it great with the sponge for touch ups on the go. I really have enjoyed this!

Argan Oil Body Lotion

Kmart in Australia has released this range of Argan, Coconut, Shea and Macadamia oil hair and body products, like hair oils and masks, shampoos, and lotions. I got this for $4 because I love the scent of the hair oil, but wasn’t expecting much from it. Boy, was I wrong! This is one of the best body lotions I’ve ever used, comparable to body shop, Bath & Body Works and Soap and Glory. It sinks in really quickly, is super moisturising and I am surprised at how amazing it is. Definitely check it out if you’re an Aussie!

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The Balm Hot Mama Blush

I grabbed this blush on a whim, and didn’t think I’d like it that much – but WOW. This is a beautiful peachy blush with a golden sheen, very comparable to NARS orgasm but more pigmented in my opinion. It’s very shiny; you don’t need a highlighter with it. But I love how easy it is for that reason – at 6am when I’m doing my makeup for work I can’t be bothered with a heap of products and this just does it all!

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The Handmaid’s Tale

I have been O B S E S S E D with this show and book right now. If you haven’t watched the show and you like dystopian fiction, download the first episode NOW. I’ve been reading the book too, which I’ve also really enjoyed!

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Label.m Oat & Honey Hair Mask

I definitely think this mask has helped my hair out – whenever I use it my hair becomes so soft and silky. This mask smells great and simply works great, what more would you want?

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American Gods

I read Neil Gaiman’s American Gods at some point last year and loved it, but I have to admit I was skeptical when I heard they were making a show, even if it did include some fantastic actors. I stand corrected though, as this show is next level. Bryan Fuller is one of my favourite directors (he directed Hannibal) and he doesn’t disappoint here. Tip: read the book before the show, because it literally will make no sense otherwise, lol.

Nick Murphy

Good old Aussie singer Chet Faker has rebranded himself with his real name Nick Murphy and released an album, and I’ve been obsessed with it!ย Your Timeย is on repeat for me right now, it’s so chilled but sexy. Check it out here!

Zoe x

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May Favourites 2017

My Bullet Journal Supplies

Recently, I have gotten right into bullet journalling, and I’m absolutely obsessed with it! I’m definitely going to do a complete post on my bullet journal soon (probably for my June spread), but for now I thought I’d share my favourite journalling supplies. Amanda Rach Lee – one of my favourite BuJo youtubers – always says you don’t need anything to bullet journal other than a notebook and a pen, and she’s right. Don’t feel like you need any of this stuff – it’s just what I decided to use and I’ve been having lots of fun with it! Also, I’m obsessed with stationery haha.

The Journal

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I couldn’t be bothered ordering/finding a proper dotted journal, so I use this spiral art notebook from Kmart ($4). Honestly, this works perfectly for me because I like the pages looking cleaner, and because it’s spiral it’s really easy to fix mistakes (i.e. rip out pages). I like the plain cover too – I’m definitely not one for crazy outside patterns! With a good ruler, I find i don’t even need the dots on the page as I can make my own if I need them!

The Pens

For my pens, I use a combination of normal pens, calligraphy pens and markers. My go-tos are below!

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Sharpie pens, ZIG Millennium pens in 03 and 08 (black x2, blue x 1). Also use Artline 200s in 0.4.

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Manuscript Italic calligraphy pens in 2,5 and 4,5, fountain pen with multiple nibs, parker quink.

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ZIG double ended calligraphy pens in black and blue.

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ZIG writer thick & thin ended markers, black, blue and grey.

The Pretty Stuff

For colour, I chose to go with the crayola supertips markers and I LOVE them! In this pack, you get a great range of colours, the marker tips can go thick or thin, they were only $10 so super affordable,ย andย they make me feel like a kid again. All bonuses – I really love these!

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I’ve also been really liking these faber castel brush tip pens (PITT artist pens) meant for manga colouring in!

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The Extras

I use miscellaneous stuff too – this gun ruler is from Typo, the double sided tape is from a stationery place and the double sided stickers are from a scrapbooking shop. For any little bits and pieces that I like sticking into the journal, I find my inspiration on pinterest, tumblr and youtube, print stuff out and stick it in or go crazy with little scrapbooking stuff. Sticking in ticket stubs and stuff like that is also a really cool idea!

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Places to find BuJo Inspiration:
Amanda Rach Lee
Rachel Aust
Amanda Rach Lee Doodles Instagram

 

Zoe x

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My Bullet Journal Supplies

My Skincare Routine

I have recently changed up my makeup routine a fair bit, and thought I’d share it with you guys! I’ve been having a few issues in regards to not drinking enough water, changing my diet, hormones, etc, so I have tried to listen to my skin more and have built this routine up from there. For example, I loved the Simple cleansing oil, but although it worked really well, smelt great and made my skin feel smooth, I ended up with clogged pores all over my chin and had to stop using it. So, I’ve taken it back to basics, gone with products that I love and am definitely seeing a difference!

My first step is removing my makeup with the Garnier micellar cleansing water, which I obviously don’t have to do in the mornings though I sometimes do just to freshen up a bit. I squirt a bit of this onto a makeup round and soak my face in it till it’s feeling clean.

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My next step it to cleanse, which I do in the morning at the sink and at night in the shower. I use my Vanity Planet ultimate spa system brush for this, with the Simple Face Wash. I tend to opt for the silicone brush head, but occasionally use the exfoliating one or the general one when my skin is feeling sensitive. I like the silicone one as it doesn’t harbor any bacteria. I will also use the St Ives Green Tea Scrub in place of the Simple wash a couple of times a week to give my skin a proper exfoliate every now and then.

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As soon as I get out of the shower, I tone with Witchazel, which I have decanted into spray bottle to make it easier for me to use. I try to do this immediately, as the sooner you tone after cleansing the better. I’ll then use my acne treatment (clindatech), and then when that has sunk in, I’ll go in with the Simple Light Moisturiser. I used to love using the NUXE oil and I still like it, but I feel it’s a bit heavy on my skin these days, so I’ll only use it occasionally.

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If needed, I’ll do some extra things. If my skin feels particularly disgusting, I’ll use a homemade sugar scrub (see the recipe here), and follow up with a face mask or pore strip. Read about my favourite face masks here! I’ve also really been liking this Kmart branded one with charcoal, jojoba and clay in it recently. Tip: always use a makeup brush to apply a facemask – minimizes wastage, is more hygienic and goes on smoother!

If I go with a pore strip, it will usually be a Biore one.

A love of mine recently has been the Mario Badesco drying lotion, which I apply overnight to dry out spots and it really does work! Buy off beautybay though – shopping for Mario Badesco in Sephora or Mecca in Australia is very expensive.

I’m really bad at remembering, but if I do, I like to put eye cream on at night. Literally any one I have at the time will do!

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Is your skincare routine any different to mine?

Zoe x

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My Skincare Routine

Makeup For Bad Skin Days

When we have days where our skin isn’t looking the best, it can be so easy to want to load on the foundation and hide away from the world. Doing this, however, tends to worsen the breakouts and prolong their life span. Also, the last thing you want when you’ve got spots is to spend an hour looking at yourself in the mirror. So, I’ve developed a fast makeup routine for my bad skin days that makes me feel more confident but also helps my skin breathe a bit. It’s very simple,ย andย all it does is even my face out a bit and help my confidence. I’m not trying to cover anything up, as spots are normal and if anyone thinks otherwise, they’re not living in the real world.

So, let’s get started!

After applying my usual skincare (updated skincare routine coming soon!), Iย useย a combination of primers. One isย theย Elfย blemish controlย primer to help my skin recover, but I will also use a pore filling primer to help even out the bumpiness of my skin.

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Products Used:
-Maybelline Baby Skin Pore Eraser
-Elf Blemish Control Face Primer
-Chi Chi Super CC Cream
-Smashbox HD Concealer in Fair
-Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Light
-Maybelline Green Concealer Stick
-Tarte Amazonian Clay Pressed powder
-Benefit Hoola Bronzer
-The Balm Hot Mama Blush
-ABH Brow Pencil in Medium Brown
-Chi Chi Eyeliner in Bronze Ambition
-Two Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

Because I like to let my skin breathe, I use a CC cream, then concealer. If my breakouts are really bad I’ll use a green concealer first, but I’ll just dab a bit onto the back of my hand then press it onto the spot with my finger. I don’t go too heavy as you can see, I don’t really mind that you can still see I’ve got spots – everyone gets them. All I’m doing here is trying to make them appear a bit more calm while also helping them heal on their own.

I like to use a good quality powder on days like these that’s quite finely milled, as it sits nicer and makes all that concealer last longer. For bronzer, I will only use a matte as to not emphasise any texture, and for blush I like one with a sheen to it so I don’t have to apply highlighter for the same reason.

I’ll then fill in my eyebrows, throw some eyeliner in my tightline and load on the mascara – nothing fancy, just a basic look. I choose to have nothing on my lips except lip balm for two reasons:
a) I never really wear lipstick anyway
b) a lot of my breakouts are hormonal on my chin, so I don’t want anything near them to aggravate them. You can’t really tell in the images, but I have a split lip as well, so lipstick wouldn’t have worked even if my skin was clear!

Here you can see the before and after’s for yourself – there’s nothing fancy going on here, no heavy coverage or cake face. All I want to do when I’ve got some spots is not wear makeup and cover my face in spot cream, but I’ve got to go to work and therefore look somewhat presentable. So, unless I have a huge event on, I’ll stick to my theme of letting my skin breathe, while also eating well and drinking a lot of water.

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Don’t forget your hair can also play an important part. Although it might be scary to tie your hair up when your skin is looking bad (we tend to hide behind our hair), if it isn’t the cleanest you might want to consider doing so to not antagonize your skin! Luckily in these photos I’d washed my hair the night before, so I was fine to leave it down – but it’s definitely something to consider!

*Disclaimer: I know that my skin isn’t the worst out there! I am lucky with relatively clear skin and I work hard at eating right, drinking enough water and using a good skincare routine to keep it that way. However, I still get the odd period where my skin says ‘fuck that’ and decides to ruin it all for me, and this is how I cope with it. Not trying to say you need to cover up any imperfections or that my skin is the worst there is*

What do you do when your skin decides to be ~problematic~?

Zoe x

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Makeup For Bad Skin Days

April Favourites

This probably is coming a bit later than you’d expect for April Favourites, but I’ve been busy and better late than never, right? Here’s what I’ve been loving recently.

Santa Clarita Diet

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I binged this show on Netflix in two days and loved every minute of it! It’s fast-paced, absolutely hilarious and the characters are amazing. I’d definitely recommend this to anyone, each episode is only 20 mins long so it’s really easy and fun to watch!

Aleka Dress in Plum – White Fox Boutique

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I wore this dress to my brother’s wedding at the end of April and got so many compliments on it! It is such a beautiful colour for my pale skin, and worked really well with my gold accessories. Such a gorgeous dress that I’ll definitely wear again! You can check out these photos on myย instagram!

Two Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

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I know I’m probably the last person in the world to get on board this mascara, but I recently picked up a sample size and have come to discover I really like it! Especially when used in conjunction with a lengthening mascara, this makes your lases look ridiculous.

Vanity Planet Skin Spa System

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I used to use the vanity planet spin for perfect skin, and I liked it, but the batteries rusted up and the heads got jammed on the brush. When I wasn’t using such a hard core cleaning product, my skin started to get really bumpy, so I bought this one on a whim. I much prefer it to the other system, as the silicone brush doesn’t harbour bacteria. Definitely have noticed an improvement in my skin since using this, and I love that it has two speed settings.

Cream Blush & Highlighter

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I have really been into using cream products in April, as they look way more natural and last a hell of a lot longer than their powder counterparts. I’ve been loving the be a bombshell cream blush in ‘southern belle’ and the Australis stick highlighter in ‘light gold’.

Simple Light Moisturiser

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When I was getting bumps on my skin, I realised my use of oils wasn’t doing my face any wonders. So, I switched to a light moisturiser and I absolutely love it! If you’d like an updated skincare routine, let me know and I’ll do one for you guys!

Beauty Blender

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I never believed the fuss about the original beauty blender, but since I’ve tried it I just can’t go back. There’s something so specific about the way it works that I can’t put my finger on, but makes it outshine all replica sponges. If you haven’t tried it, do so, and tell me the cheap alternatives work the same. (Spoiler: they don’t)

Growing My Own Herbs

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Since I’ve been living on my own, I’ve been trying really hard to grow some of my own stuff. Right now, I’m growing basil, parsley, coriander, mint and rosemary, as well as keeping some succulents, and aloe plant and a Japanese peace lily. There’s something so nice about having to look after something that isn’t you, and then reaping the benefits in delicious cooking!

The Circle

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I know this is coming out as a movie soon, but that’s not why I read it. I grabbed a sample on my kindle, read it, then immediately had to go out and borrow the book. I read it in two days. It’s a very well written, fast-paced book that’s very difficult to put down once you get into it, and I strongly recommend it if you like technology, politics and control of freedom.

What have you been loving this month?! Let me know!

Zoe x

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April Favourites