I have always loved candles. There is something so relaxing about striking a match or turning the wheel of a lighter and putting the flame to a wick, then filling your space with a warm, ambient glow and beautiful fragrance. I used to be one of those people who bought $3 candles from the dollar store and collect millions of them, but I have come to understand the scents I truly love and now stick to buying a select few good quality candles. I hope you enjoy my collection as much as I have enjoyed collecting it!
Sweet, Vanilla Scents
-Merry Cookie (Bath & Bodyworks)
-Vanilla Bean (Bath & Bodyworks)
-Vanilla Snowflake (Bath & Bodyworks)
-Warm Apple Pie – Mini (Bath & Bodyworks)
Merry Cookie – Mini (Bath & Bodyworks)
September has come and gone in an absolute whirlwind. Now it’s October – middle of Spring for us in Australia (most days are nearing 30 degrees which I’m VERY happy about) and I leave for overseas in just over 20 days. Where is this year going?! I’ve loved a heap of things this month, so keep reading to find out what!
The Psychopath Test – Jon Ronson
If you like psychology, murder mysteries, generally great non-fiction writing – read this. This has been on my list for AGES and I finally got around to reading it this month and I loved it. Super interesting book!
Invisible Planets – Ken Liu
Another book, but this is an anthology of Chinese science-fiction short stories. Might sound strange, but my friend lent this to me and I really enjoyed it. Most of the stories are dystopian (if you’ve read me for a while you know I’m a sucker for anything dystopian) and are incredibly beautiful and thought provoking. So many cultures and countries have incredible stories written, and it’s unfortunate that they usually aren’t translated for us to read. Pick up this book if you like reading, you won’t regret it!
I grabbed both the body spray and shower sauce from the summery Zoella range and (besides the original scent) it is my favourite scent she’s ever done! It’s pomegranate and elderflower, so it’s perfect for us Southern Hemisphere folk going into spring and summer. If you can get your hands on it, go and smell it – such a wonderful scent!
OGX Weightless Oil Mist
I tried this for the first time this month and really enjoyed it! It does exactly what it says it does, and hydrates without looking greasy. It also smells amazing! OGX is a great brand that’s definitely worth the hype.
I bought this little glowing panda from IKEA a while ago now, but I really like having him accompany me when I’m writing long into the night. He glows green to blue and you can pause him at your favourite colour. He’s such a cute addition to any room 🙂
This has become one of my new favourite ways to meditate! You must listen to this with headphones on, but it gets you into a meditative state after only a few minutes. You can read up on the science about it here.
Season 2 of the Australian Sci-Fi drama Glitch just came out and I binged it in two days! Such a good show, and there are only 6 eps per season. It’s all about a small country town where people from all eras start coming to life. Aussie drama doesn’t get enough credit – check it out!
Four Legendary Kingdoms – Matthew Reilly
If you’re an action and history/mythology fan, get on this series by Australian author Matthew Reilly. This is the fourth in this series and intertwines with some of his other work, and is nothing short of a showstopping, page turning piece of great entertainment. I read it in a day.
Logitech Bluetooth Keyboard
I used to have an external keyboard that used cords to connect to my laptop, and I did like it but it definitely got annoying. This month I picked up a new logitech keyboard and I’m loving it! If you spend a lot of time on your laptop typing, this might me a good investment for you.
Finally, I just want to send my love and hugs to anyone out there who needs it. The world is a scary place, but we can find happiness within each other.
I am such a YouTube fiend it’s not even a joke at this point, but recently I’ve discovered some new faves, rediscovered some old, and just generally been loving the lifestyle/minimalism/bujo channels. If you like similar stuff, check out the below! Of course, there are so many not included in this list that I still love, but these have just been my priorities to watch recently – all hyperlinks will open in a new window!
This month I have discovered a whole array of new things that I have come to love!
Mario Badesco Drying Lotion
I know everyone harps on about this, but it is completely warranted! I use this stuff to calm down spots, ones that have come up and ones that are brewing, and also to dry out those weird hormonal bumps on my chin. I absolutely can’t get over how much it has cleared up my skin, and it’s definitely worth a try!
IKEA Bed & Bedside Tables
My new TARVA bed and RAST bedside tables have been an obsession of mine. When I moved into this apartment I didn’t have a bedframe, and having one makes a huge difference to the overall ‘homey’ feel of it. The fairy lights are from kmart, the bedding from IKEA and the cushion was a gift. Stay tuned for more ~aesthetic~ photos in my apartment tour!
Elf Flawless Finish Foundation
I would consider this $10 foundation comparable to the NARS Sheer Glow. I’m not kidding. Their shade range for pale skin is amazing, with just the right amount of yellow to neutral out the pinkness in my fair complexion. It has great medium coverage, a lovely demi-matte finish and lasts quite well throughout the day. It also comes in a gorgeous glass bottle that makes the product look like NARS as well as perform like it!
Lip Lab Lipstick
For Christmas, my mum bought me a voucher to go to the Lip Lab in Paddington (Sydney), where you get to create your own lipstick and they make it in front of you. You get to personally create the colour, pick a formula, choose a scent, name it, insert additives like lip plumper and moisturiser – you can basically create your dream lipstick, and that’s exactly what I did. I’m in love with it!
Zoella Sweet Inspirations Body Mist & Double Creme Lotion
This range has recently become available in Target in Australia and I was super excited about it! I have to say, I still prefer the original scent but this is still a very nice sweet scent. I find it works really well as a base for other perfumes too, complementing them with vanilla and sweet almond. The bottle is also beautiful, making it perfect for display
I have been on the popsocket trend for a while now – so much so that I physically cannot hold my phone without it! If you haven’t tried popsockets, get on board! Phone grips, headphone winder and phone stand? Absolute win. I also recently picked up the phone holder that I have attached to my car dashboard, making my life SO much easier. I get my popsockets online and from Sportsgirl, my phone case is from Kmart.
Simple Oil Cleanser
My best friend got me onto this and I’m really digging it! It’s a lovely hydrating and gentle way to take your makeup off at the end of the day. I definitely need to cleanse afterwards, and if I’m wearing a particularly heavy face of makeup I tend to swipe a bit of micellar water over my skin too, but for the most part this is just fine at melting down the makeup. Its scent is lovely and it’s a super inexpensive product.
Elf Acne Fighting Primer
I picked this up at the same time as I got the Elf foundation, and I really like it! I can’t wait to grab their illuminating one. I don’t think it does a heap for my skin in terms of ‘blemish control’, but it’s a light, fresh and moisturising primer that definitely keeps my makeup looking nicer for longer. For the price, you really can’t go wrong. Also, can we just take a moment to appreciate the step up in Elf packaging?!
Morphe M504 Blending Brush
This blending brush I ordered off Beauty Bay and I’m obsessed with it. I’ve never used anything Morphe before, but the quality for the price is incredible. It picks up colour so well, blends it out nicely and doesn’t disrupt the pigmentation. I love it!
Welcome to my Blogmas! I love Christmas so much, and the best way to celebrate is with Christmas related posts every day at 5pm WordPress time until the 25th! Hope you enjoy!
Today it’s my festive morning routine! I love reading posts like these – I hope you love it!
The first thing I do when I wake up is drink a crapload of water. Considering we eat so badly this month, it’s important to help your body flush out the toxins by keeping up your water intake! I’ll then open my blinds and make my bed.
I’ll head out of my room then and check my advent calendars. I have a Cadbury chocolate one, and one that my mum puts a little gift in for me everyday since I’ve moved home. Usually it will be a bit of chocolate or a tiny festive trinket.
After this, I’ll turn on the Christmas tree lights and make myself some breakfast. This is more often than not avocado on toast and a cup of tea. I’ll connect my computer to the TV and watch all the vlogmas videos that have been uploaded through the night.
After I’ve finished, I’ll take my computer into my study and get working on my next blogmas post!
Today I wanted to talk to you all about my favourite Christmas scents – because who doesn’t love a good festive candle, am I right?
My first favourite is Vanilla Snowflake from Bath & Bodyworks. We don’t have B&BW in Australia, so my friend was kind enough to give me this as a gift after her recent US trip. I love this candle – it fills my entire space with a beautiful, baking-like scent that isn’t so strong it gives me a headache. I also am a sucker for 3-wick candles, because they look so pretty!
I bought this next candle from Dusk in Australia a few years back as a limited edition candle, though it smells exactly like the “Light my Fire” candle from Typo if anyone wanted to get their hands on it. It’s the perfect Southern Hemisphere Christmas smell – it’s a sweet guava scent that is fresh and feels really special. Also, the packaging is beautiful!
This ‘fig and papaya’ candle from Kmart is my all time favourite candle because it smells like someone is baking ginger cookies (how I get that scent from fig and papaya, I’ll never know), and they sell this candle for $1 in tiny jars all year round. For Christmas, they released the candle with a double wick in a walnut shaped copper tin, and God knows it was the first thing I bought when shopping for Christmas decorations! It’s so cute, and simply my favourite candle of all time.
My final scent is basically anything that smells like Merry Cookie from Bath & Bodyworks. Again, this candle came from overseas, and it’s so tiny I’m never going to burn it. That said, it is the cutest decoration and the scent is pretty common among wax melts and essential oils, so I’m not hard-pressed to enjoy this scent around Christmastime.
Thank you all so much for reading, and I hope this post helped! Stay tuned for some more really exciting holiday posts – including makeup, outfits and gifts!
It is truly the most wonderful time of the year – at least in my opinion. Anyone that knows me knows very well that I am absolutely in love with Christmas, and, honestly, I’ve been listening to Christmas music since October #noshame.
However, I know that Christmastime is extremely expensive, especially when you count in presents, food, decorations, travel to family – the list goes on. So, I thought I’d make this post to share my tips on how to be extremely festive on a tiny budget – perfect for students!
My first tip is to just go small – you don’t need a 10ft tree and a choir outside your house to make Christmas special. You have no idea the difference a cup of hot chocolate, a Christmas candle and a bit of tinsel can make to the atmosphere of your space. It is for this reason that I always suggest little decor if you can’t afford the huge stuff; this includes snow globes, mini trees, candles, garlands, fairy lights, etc. All of this stuff can be bought for super cheap at dollar stores or places like Kmart and Target.
Never underestimate film and music, and its affect on your Christmas spirit! My favourite Christmas films are
The Santa Clause
In terms of music, I love my spotify playlist, which is the public Christmas playlist on my account: zoeninataylor. Here below is an idea of my favourite stuff – as you can probably see, I’m obsessed with the Pentatonix Christmas albums.
3. Paint your nails in festive colours. If you want to treat yourself -after all, ’tis the season – go all out with a Shellac manicure. As you can see, I chose a lovely white with gold accents. If that is a little out of your range, you can always go with a DIY manicure, and some of my favourite festive shades are shown below.
4. Having an advent calendar is super exciting! Even if it’s a basic Dairy Milk one, my personal favourite, mind you, it’s always such a treat to wake up and have a treat waiting for you.
5. Baking Christmas stuff does not have to be expensive or difficult, and you don’t even have to buy festive cookie cutters if you have any skill with freehanding! Here is my favourite rolled Sugar Cookie recipe, but beware because it makes a HEAP.
Cream butter and sugar together, then add the wet ingredients. Mix together before slowly adding the sifted dry ingredients. When all combined, cover with cling wrap and chill for at least an hour (overnight is perfect). After flouring a surface and the rolling pin, take the chilled dough out and roll between 1/4 inch & 1/2 inch thick. Cut out cookie shapes, and bake one inch apart for 6-8 minutes. Let completely cool before icing.
6. Vlogmas is legitimately one of my favourite things ever, and the fact that every single day I get at least an hour to spend watching my favourite YouTubers do fun Christmassy things is the quickest (and cheapest!) way to get me feeling all festive – as if I needed help with that one. My favourite vloggers this December are Zoella, Tanya Burr, Alisha Marie and Shaaanxo.
7. Having a warm drink is a lovely way to take some time out, even for my Southern Hemisphere buddies, I’m sure to have a lovely cup of tea at night, even though here in Australia it’s still like 35 C at night and I feel as if I’m going to die of heatstroke. Whatever though, it’s Christmas! As for my favourite hot beverages, I love an English Breakfast tea, peppermint tea, or a hot chocolate. My favourite is white chocolate peppermint hot chocolate, and it’s such a treat. Also, I love collecting Christmas mugs, and these are so cute and cheap as anything!
Peppermint White Hot Chocolate Recipe:
Melt 1/2 cup of white chocolate drops in a saucepan of milk, with 3 drops of peppermint essence till everything is combined and warm. Transfer to mug, and top with whipped cream and crushed candy cane.
I wish you all the best holiday season and hope these tips are helpful! Love you guys so much – forever grateful for your constant support.
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