March 29, 2013

What I read : Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë

Hello lovely people !

Today I'm going to write about a book. I've just finished reading it, and it has become one of my favourite books ever : Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë (well this is already written in the title, I know).

I've seen some adaptations of this book, but before that I had never read the book. As I was in my "Jane Eyre fangirl" period - I could watch and re-watch the movies all the time without getting bored, it was almost scary - I decided it was the best time to read it !

The book was published in 1847, under the name "Currer Bell", and encountered a great success.
The story is very well known - that of Jane Eyre, a poor orphan who, mistreated by her aunt and cousins, was sent to a boarding school. When she grew up she became a teacher in that school, and then advertised to go elsewhere. That's when she was hired to work at Thornfield Hall for Mr Rochester, as a governess for the little French girl Adèle.
And that is the beginning of a love story that you must already know very well !

I'm not going to sum up the whole book as there are so many things going on, many events happen in Jane's life - but she's happy in the end so that's okay !
Jane Eyre is not only a romantic story, it is the story of a life, a tough life made of difficult times - how awful Jane's childhood was ! - and brighter moments, which are described by Jane herself, narrator of her own story. Between the events she tells, she spreads little reflections about her situation, her philosophy and the way she handled things. Jane never complained, never grew bitter even though she had lots of reasons to, and never regretted anything. Behind her "plain and little", as she says herself, appearance, her seemingly fragility of body and mind, she shows a great courage and a humble spirit. As strange as it may be, she is a strong character.

I love how, in the 19th century, when women were not really put forward in society, some women like the Brontë sisters, or a little earlier Jane Austen, managed to write stories about women in their society, and how their books were successful. And it's impressing how these stories are still loved and studied and used as references today, in more evolved societies were women have more importance.
It makes these women writers of the 19th century models that I look up to.


I'll maybe do an article about the adaptations of Jane Eyre that I've seen, just because this is something I love to talk about, and I'd love to share my thoughts about all of my interests.
But that's all for the book, I wouldn't bother anybody by making a precise analysis of the plot, the characters and the themes, there may be some essays on that subject already (I'll search for that, it must be very interesting to read the thoughts of professionals !) so I'll keep it short.

That was my "literature post of the month", see you next time !

Julia xx

March 23, 2013

Review : Naked Nail Polishes by Urban Decay

Hello !

One of the last times I went shopping, I bought the Naked nail polishes by Urban Decay (I posted it in my haul). I finally tried them all, and made some swatches to show here.

The first thing you can see is that the colours are very beautiful. They do remind of the eyeshadows. The only exception may be "Hustle", which is here a dark purple with silver undertones, whereas the eyeshadow is a very dark brown. For the rest of them, they quite look like the original colours.
They are all easy to apply, the brush is not too big nor too thin. They all lasted me long, though I took them off about 3 or 4 days after I had put them (I like to change my nail polish often). 
Here are the polishes :

Naked is a nude beige colour. Although it's a nude it's quite opaque and you can go with two coats only. For this swatch I wear three coats. It almost looked like my own skin colour, sometimes I had that weird feeling that my nails had disappeared ! but it is very classical and perfect for work, if you can't wear bright or sparkly nail polishes.

Sidecar is, as in the Naked palette, a light beige colour all sparkly. The nail polish has a nude background colour, with silver glitter in it. With one coat, you only see the glitter, so maybe you could wear this polish on top of any other. But you can also wear it on its own, with three coats it looks like this (but you can go with two coats, that would be okay) :

Sin is a sparkly pinky colour. It is so beautiful when the light goes on the colour, it looks all bright and pretty. Again, a kind of neutral colour that goes with almost everything. I'm wearing three coats here.

Smog is a bronze colour with gold highlights under the light. It is a sparkly polish, just like the eyeshadow. I have three coats here.

Hustle is a sparkly dark purple. As I said, it doesn't look like the eyshadow of the same name but it really doesn't matter, the colour is beautiful. I don't wear dark nail polishes a lot, and I didn't have any purple in my collection. This one is cool, but I think will suit better in the autumn/winter, these days I tend to go for lighter colours. I put three coats (I always go for three coats anyway).

And finally, Creep is a black with silver glitter in it. It is much more sparkly than the original eyeshadow, I must say. And it is very pretty and would be great for a night out or a party. 
The only problem is that I'm not used to wearing black nail polish, I don't know why but I always find that it looks sad on me, it doesn't suit me. That's a pity, because the colour is amazing ! I'm not gonna wear it very often, but maybe keep it for nights out. I only have two coats in this picture, and it's enough to have a good opacity. Sorry it's badly done, but I took the picture right after putting the polish on. I usually take off the nail polish on the sides of my nails : even though I paint my nails all the time, I still do it very badly and I put nail polish everywhere on my fingers. Clumsy me !


That's all for the Naked nail polishes ! I hope the swatches are alright, my camera cannot zoom very well (it's a quite old one *sigh*) so I did the best I could.
I really recommend them, the colours are pretty and almost all of them are wearable everyday.
I bought them in Sephora for 24€ - that's less than the price of two O.P.I. polishes, so it's fair enough. I don't regret buying them at all.

See you next time !

Julia xx

March 20, 2013

Let's talk about : skater dresses

Hello !

If there is one thing I love in the world of fashion and clothing, it is skater dresses. I think their shape is the cutest, you can wear them in any situation, it can always fit ! So I thought, why wouldn't I do an article about this type of dress ? It is very in trend at the moment so we can find many in almost every shop - but even if it disappears of the fashion sphere one day, I shall be faithful to them until I die !

I picked up a few dresses I like, in different websites and in different price ranges.
Here we go !

The first one comes from my favourite shop, New Look. You can find so much stuff in there - not always very pretty I must admit, sometimes there are some oddities in the depth of their online shop - and often prices are affordable.
I spotted this light grey dress, very plain and simple, but the sleeves are the cool detail : they are leather-like. You can easily style this dress with fun tights, or a big necklace, or a denim jacket for example.

You can find the dress here for 19.99€ (but you can change the price in pounds if you live in the UK)

Next dress, from the American equivalent of New Look (in my opinion, at least) : Forever 21.
They have so many things in their website, you could easily spend your entire day searching for clothes/accessories to put on your wishlist.
The dress I chose is a blue lacy dress. I love the romantic feel of the lace, and the bright blue colour reminds of spring and summer. But the belt they put with the dress doesn't match it, I think. Anyway the dress itself is enough !

It is in the Forever 21 online shop for 21.75€, but again you can change it  into your own money.

Then I've got a dress from the online shop Boohoo. I've never shopped there and never had any of their products so I cannot tell you about the brand, but I was looking around when I saw this dress and I thought it would fit in my article quite well !

The dress is very simple, sleeveless and classical skater bottom part. The cool thing about it is the pattern : aren't those flowers lovely ? It is very wallflower looking, "granny style" as some of my male friends would say - but they don't know anything about female clothes heh.
With black tights and ballet shoes, and maybe a cardigan on top just because it's still cold these days, it would make a very simple yet pretty look !
The dress is here, for 30.00€ (quite pricey when you think about it !).

The next two dresses are from H&M. I wanted to take one but I liked both and they are very different. On top of that they are quite cheap so it's all good !
The first one is a simple black sleeveless dress, printed on top. I love the tiger print, which is very in at the moment, I've seen it in Forever 21 and New Look already, if I remember well. The eyes of the tiger are strange, I must say... Deep green eyes we have here.

You can find the dress on this page for 14.95€ only !

The second dress from H&M is very simple, but its bright colour is beautiful and reminds my of the spring to come ! yes, I can't wait to be in spring and to stop wearing coats and scarves and jumpers... When the suns come back I'll probably be wearing dresses like this one !

 Again it's not very expensive, the link is here and the dress costs 24.95€ - of course you could find cheaper ones, maybe in Primark when you are in the UK, but in France we don't have this kind of "cheap shops" where you can make loads of bargains, so I think 24.95 is quite good for an average dress here !

My last dress is from Asos, and precisely from the Curve range. It is a grey lacy dress, with a cute detailing at the front, with the heart-shaped grey fabric underneath the lace ; it has little lacy sleeves.
Like almost everything that has lace on it, I find it romantic and cute and feminine. 

The dress is available here for 36.36€.


That's all for my little skater dresses ! As you can see we can find plenty of these dresses everywhere, and of every style - plain, printed, lacy, and I'm sure you could have dotted ones, striped ones, etc. 
You can always find you perfect dress.

See you next time !

Julia xx

March 08, 2013

Review : Love Lettuce by Lush

Hello !

Today I'm making a review of one of Lush's fresh masks, Love Lettuce ! 
Honestly I don't understand the name, even more because it's very different from the French one, how did they translate that and why... But that doesn't really matter after all.
I wanted to try one of these fresh masks for a long time, and I finally decided to take one. According to how they were described on the website, Love Lettuce was the one that suited me best. 
Here is what Lush says about it :

"This mask is a seaweed gel with exfoliating granules through it. 
Ideal for those who want to clear away dead skin and brighten the face, whilst also gently treating it to softening ingredients."

Exfoliating + brighten the face + softening ingredients = perfect !

So it looks like this :

Yes in French it's called "Balançoire", and you could translate that by "swing"... Strange !

This product is made of agar agar gel (it's a seaweed - I prefer explaining that just because before I bought this I didn't know what agar agar was), honey, almond oil, lavender oil... and some other things but you can have a good idea of the product just with those.

Concerning the texture : the mask is not as thick as it looks on the first picture. Not too thick, not too liquid, just the right texture to apply on the face without struggling to put it nicely everywhere. There are a lot of almond pieces in it, so that when you put it and when you take it off, it exfoliates your face naturally - meaning that you don't have to rub your face yourself.
But you have to be careful when after you apply the mask : when it dries, the pieces of almond can fall very easily. Even just by slightly touching your skin with the tip of your finger, almonds will just fall from your face. That's not a big problem, of course, but it's worth being noticed.

I won't post a picture of my face with it - but you can easily imagine what you would look like if you put it !

Now for the smell : as many Lush products, it's quite a strong smell. It doesn't stay on your skin or on your hands after you've used it, but you have that smell from the moment you apply it to the moment you take it off. It smells of lavender, and I know some people really hate this smell so think about it before buying, if you don't like lavender this mask can be very unpleasant to use. 
I personally adore it !

And finally, for the result !
I've used Love Lettuce maybe five or six times since I got it (about two weeks ago). I've read that you can use it two times a week or so, but I use it more - sometimes just as a sort of cleanser, without leaving it ten minutes on my face. It's not really a cheap product and I have only ten days left to use it so I don't want any waste hehe.

Now that I've used it a few times, I can notice some changes on my skin. It seems brighter ; the skin looks less tired than it did before. As I have a combination to oily skin, I have (well, I had !) some dry areas on my face, mostly around my nose, and when I wore foundation it was awful. After I started using Love Lettuce, this dryness slowly disappeared and now it's completely gone ! I'm very happy with that.
And when you take off the product, your skin is very soft and matified for a while. 


To sum up, I think Love Lettuce is a very good product, of great quality. You can definitely see a difference before and after you've used it, the face is a lot prettier then.
Would I buy it again ? Yes totally, but not for now : I want to try coalface by Lush too and I cannot buy them both at the same time, but I will surely come back to Love Lettuce later !

You can find the product here !

Julia xx

March 06, 2013

DIY jewellery storage

Hello !

This article will be another DIY ! I'm usually not a handy person, but it seems that a strange DIY spirit has appeared in me lately. That's a good thing though !
And today's DIY is a jewellery storage - or in fact some jewellery storage, as there are several pieces.
I don't have enough space in my room to have a proper jewellery hanger, like a tree where you can put the necklaces or bracelets on the branches. I have to keep all my jewellery in a box... but everything was tangled in there, as you may imagine ! So I decided to make little paper pockets to put every single piece of jewellery (how many times will I be writing this word today ?) I have.
I used my precious Cath Kidston dupe paper, a pair of scissors, a pencil, a ruler, adhesive tape and glue, and finally a punched pocket.

The first thing to do is to cut a rectangle in the paper ; it has to be quite big because you'll have to fold it in two.
So you cut your piece of paper, and then you fold it in two, but you have to leave a space of about 1cm on the side of your paper.
Then you cut about 1cm at the bottom of the paper, and another 1cm at the top. The bottom bit will be folded to close the paper. On the top bit, you take the bigger side of the paper and cut the sides like the top of an envelope : it will be the bit that closes and opens the pocket to put your jewellery.

After you've done that, you take the bigger side of the paper, and you cut a square in the middle of it. You should have something like this :

You take your punched pocket and cut a square of the size of the square you have in your paper, and put it on the "inside" part of your paper (with the adhesive paper, the glue won't work). Finally, you stick the side and the bottom parts of the paper, and that's all !

The final result looks like that :

It is not the neatest thing you could find but I still think it's okay and very cute to put your stuff in.
I made several of these, of different sizes, to put my necklaces, bracelets and earrings.

So let's make a before/after of my jewellery box : 

  • Before :
Messy !!

  • After :
That's better !

Well you can see that everything is not in a pocket yet ; that's because I ran out of my pretty paper and I'm waiting until I buy some more to finish. I'll be making other pockets when I have new paper !
I'm really happy with this storage, because it makes it more easy to pick up some jewellery out of the box - when everything was just thrown in there I had to search for things and take everything out to pick one piece, and that bothered me a lot. Now it won't happen anymore !

Julia xx

March 02, 2013

Wishlist : March '13

Hello !

I decided to organise myself better by making wishlists when I want things. I will not be choosing more than five or six products each time, just so that I don't make it look like an "impossible and expensive things to get" wishlist. 
I selected a few items that I found and liked, and I have the whole month to get them. If I don't, I can always try next month - but I'll include them again in the five/six things I will put in my next list.

So here is my wishlist for March, featuring a lot of New Look stuff !

1. Mat Velvet + foundation, Make Up Forever, 34.50€ (available on the Sephora website)
2. Blue and White Chambray Jacquard Skater Skirt, New Look, 24.99€ (available here)
3. Cameo Rose Shell Pink Crochet Panel Sleeveless Shirt Dress, New Look, 24.33€ (available here)
4. Coalface cleanser, Lush, 8.95€/100g (available here, price in Pounds)
5. Gold Iridescent Triangle Necklace, New Look, 7.99€ (available here)

This is quite a "pink" list, with all this pale colours - except for the Lush face cleanser but nobody will see it obviously !
I'm really excited to try the foundation and the cleanser, which I'm sure I will be talking about after some time using it.

Let's see if I can pick these items before the beginning of April !

Julia xx