However much this does sound like the title of a dissertation, it is something that has been on my mind for a while. For the last few weeks, I have been inundated with adverts on my social media channels with celebrities endorsing products, that I will guarantee, they have never used.

Trackback 10 years ago… Celebrities were all over the place advertising drinks, cars, perfumes, haircare, makeup – the lot. They were used to maximise the impact of a marketing campaign and build brand awareness amongst consumers with their recognisability. But fast forward to the present, and these well-known endorsements are few and far between.

Back in the day, when we saw a face that we knew advertising a brand, the teenager in us would associate the familiarity with trust, and with that, we would more than likely purchase the product – easy for big brands to make a sale to susceptible youngsters who want nothing more than to fit in with the masses.

But now, with the more and more brands that there are out there, the harder it is for companies to get into our heads and influence our buying habits, even if they do use a celebrity to try and sway us.

Around eight years ago, something amazing happened to the way that we would purchase items for the foreseeable future – something that was so disruptive for brands, and something none of them knew how to jump on as it was happening – the YouTuber, Blogger hybrid, was born.

YouTube had been around for many years before this, but it was only in about 2009 when girls from all over the world started showing their ever-growing audiences what they had purchased – and the haul video as we know it, was born.

This was such a new way for consumers to see what clothes and makeup looked like on actual, real-life girls and not 6-foot tall, size 4, airbrushed-to-the-max supermodels. All of a sudden, the fashion and beauty industry had to take these new ‘influencers’ into account and try and get them on their side to promote their products.

At first, a lot of these new YouTubers were happy to accept clothes and makeup for free in exchange for an honest review on their channels, but as the industry got bigger and bigger, a lot of them realised that they could make a living by doing this full-time.

However, because of the uncertainty surrounding the blogging industry, a lot of brands didn’t see a future in this and continued to endorse their products with celebrities; but they soon realised that the average twenty-something is much more likely to buy a dress from a face they know and trust, who, at the end of the day, is a twenty-something themselves, telling them the honest ins and outs of a product.

Do you remember back in 2016, where Scott Disick pasted the instructions of what a brand wanted him to write into his Instagram caption? Or when Daley Blind broke the illusion that he actually liked and purchased his new Adidas shirt instead of being paid to advertise it? Brands are now just telling their endorsers what to write showing that the celebrity has no interest in the product whatsoever, as long as they are being paid to talk about it, which makes the blogging industry even more refreshing.

For the past few years since I have been a part of this industry myself (albeit, on a much smaller scale) I have noticed that Bloggers, YouTubers and Instagrammers all have so much more sway on what the 14-30 year-old market is buying because they are people just like you and me.

With the introduction of Instagram stories and the ability to add in links to the products you are wearing (the ‘swipe up’ links that you can only do if your following is more than 10,000) as well as YouTubers linking every product they are talking about in their videos in the description box, it is becoming even more accessible for us to purchase these items in a quick and timely manner – because as a generation, all we ever talk about is our lack of time – so anything that is made quick and easy for us, we love.

To me, celebrity endorsements have been dying out for years, as the evolution of consumer’s buying habits continues to change. We are no longer drawn to Pantene because Ellie Goulding has nice hair; we no longer want to buy L’Oreal because Penelope Cruz looks flawless, and we longer want to shop at Iceland because Kerry Katona told us how cheap it was – that one was a long-shot anyway.

As consumers, we are more likely now to make our own decisions, instead of being swayed by a face we know. We’re not stupid: We know the amount of choice there is out there, so we want to make an informed judgment instead of jumping on the bandwagon.

The honesty and relatability of the everyday girl talking about Topshop Joni jeans, the latest Naked palette and which foundation is the best for night’s out if much more appealing than air-brushed celebrities on our TV screens who have probably never picked up the product in their life.

Maybe I’m wrong; maybe one-day celebrity endorsements will make a comeback: But in my eyes, the new generation of influencers are becoming the celebrities that we recognise and trust, and it’s only a matter of time before we see social media taking over another part of the world.

xx

Well… It’s been quite a while since I spoke about anything beauty related, hasn’t it? That’s not to say I’m not still obsessed with skincare and makeup, but I’ve been focusing more on food, travel and lifestyle content, with a few beauty posts thrown in here and there for good measure.

Today I thought I would share some of my current favourites – the products I’m going back to time and time again. I’m 27 now and this year I have tried to heavily invest in more upmarket skincare products to slow down any signs of ageing (because apparently, I should have started worrying about that when I was 25… who knew?)

1. Liz Earle – Cleanse & Polish £14.50

This is one I mentioned on my Weekly Loves back in May, and since then I have been loving using it. I use about one pump and spread it evenly over my face and eyes. Not only does it smell really fresh, but the consistency isn’t too thick, which I’ve found with other cleansers. I leave it on for about 2-3 minutes and then take it off with a muslin cloth that I’ve run under warm water. I usually use a micellar water after this to make sure every last bit of makeup is off my skin.

2. Botanics Triple Age Renew Facial Oil – £11.49

I picked this up in the Market Street Boots store at the start of June and I’ve been using it every night after cleansing and toning. The one I have is slightly different to the one I’ve linked, but from the same range. I never used to be a fan of oils as my complexion can get quite oily itself, but I’ve found my skin absolutely loves this. Boots usually have offers on Botanics as it is their premium beauty brand so I would suggest having a look in store over shopping online.



3. Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask – £24

This is a product I only use 1-2 times a week after picking up at Hamburg airport back in December and I’m only about halfway through. This is quite a thick mask to leave on your skin overnight, but it does the trick at supplying a high level of moisture and it smells amazing. At first, I wasn’t too convinced by it but now when I use it, the next morning my skin feels so nourished and smooth.

4. Clinique All About Eyes – £27

This is a product I did a lot of research into when I noticed my under eye bags getting worse. I’m not a great sleeper, so, unfortunately, I have to spend quite a lot on under eye creams and concealers. I got this one for my birthday after it was highly regarded in Marie Claire and I love it so far. I’ve noticed my circles have slightly reduced, but the product itself is really nice to apply in the morning and before bed. The consistency is a sort of gel, but it absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave the skin feeling greasy or sticky which I’ve found with some competitors.

5. Nivea Peach Shine Lip Balm – £1.95

This was a very spontaneous purchase after my lips seemed to be quite sunburnt one summer day and I love it. I have a handbag full of different kinds of lip balms but I keep going back to this one at the moment because it smells so fruity and has a slight coral tint to it if you’re not in the mood to wear lipstick.

I hope you enjoyed this slightly different post than usual!
What are you skincare favourites?

xx

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Today I’m going to be talking about the Kiehl’s event I was invited to last weekend at their Manchester King Street boutique store. I met up with my friend Rachel before the event (from the blog Ode2Fitness) plus her baby bump and we wandered through a very quiet Manchester at 9:30am.

I’ve walked past the Kiehl’s shop so many times (I used to go to college up the road) but I’d never actually been in. On arriving, I noticed how big and bright the shop was compared to some of the other branches I’ve been in, and there’s even a treatment room downstairs where you can book yourself in for a facial (these usually retail for around £35, but for the month of July and August, you can get one for £5 – definitely worth it!)

We were greeted by Jane and Puneet who showed us around the shop, and let us take photos of all of the incredibly well displayed products. We were given a glass of bubbly (pineapple juice for Rachel) and some pastries for breakfast whilst we waited for the other bloggers to arrive.

For those who aren’t aware, Kiehl’s is an American cosmetic brand, which specialises in premium skin, hair and body care products. It started off on Third Avenue in Manhattan, New York, back in 1851, so to say they know a thing or two about the market is definitely an understatement. The currently have over 250 stores worldwide and over 1,000 points of sale, including their department store presence. In comparison to some of their competitors, Kiehl’s have a very large male following, which we saw first hand in their Manchester store whilst we were there.

When I was invited to be an ambassador for Kiehl’s Manchester, firstly, I was incredibly surprised – I wouldn’t class myself as a beauty blogger of sorts… I’ve blogged about beauty here and there, but nothing too recently, but I am always up for varying my content, and I have admired the brand for a while; secondly, I was honoured to be part of such a big campaign that the brand are involved with – at the moment, Kiehl’s have joined forces with MTV for their Staying Alive campaign which aims to fight HIV globally. Kiehl’s have produced an avocado eye cream, which has been designed by Leona Lewis, and are donating £10 of every sale to the charity. The eye cream is really rich and smooth (from the bit I tried on the back of my hand anyway…) and would be a really nice addition to your skincare routine, whilst helping such a great cause.

We were talked through the history of the brand by Jane, and she mentioned some of the most popular products: We were very kindly gifted a beautiful box of Kiehl’s goodies. After the introduction to the brand, Puneet gave us a run down of what Kiehl’s Manchester are doing over the next few months, how we can get involved, and some of the competitions that are happening throughout August.

One of the main competitions is for you as my readers – for every one of you that donates £3 to the MTV Staying Alive campaign by texting KIEH99 £3 to 70070, you can pop into store and get a little goodie bag full of miniatures of some of their most premium products. Also, make sure you are following me on social media (twitter and instagram) as I will be promoting some more of their competitions.

After we had been given a run through of some of their store favourites, we were given a skincare consultation. At the moment with the weather being a bit warmer, my skin has been so dry, which showed up on the oil test that we were given (there was literally no oil on my cheeks, which apparently is a bad thing…) Puneet recommended me some products to try to combat the issues including the turmeric and cranberry energising radiance mask, the ultra face cream and the midnight recovery concentrate. We were given a bit more time perusing the shelves before taking some selfies with Mr. Bones, the brand mascot.

I am a big lover of brands that partner with charities, and I hope you will agree with me that this is a really great cause.

Thank you to Jane and Puneet for the lovely experience, and keep you eyes peeled on my social media channels for the upcoming competitions.

xx

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I’ve decided to start doing a monthly wishlist at the start of every month including beauty bits, fashion, lifestyle, homeware, travel, and food. I’ve done a few separate wishlists here and there over the years, but I thought it would be a good chance to round everything up at the start of the month.

Because these will fall just after payday, I’m hoping that you’ll find a few bits in there that you’ll want, and if there’s anything you think I will like, please let me know.

Wishlist posts are some of my favourites to read, so I hope you enjoy reading this one!

1. Stila Liquid Eye Shadow £23

2. Topshop Floral Dress – £42

3. The Happiness Planner – £40

4. Maybelline Concealer – £8

5. Origins Peel Off Mask – £21.60

6. Topshop Jamie Jeans – £42

7. Zara Floral Dress – £60

8. Oliver Bonas Picture – £60

9. Too Faced Eye Shadow Palette – £39

10. Asos Embroidered Bag – £38

11. Topshop Oversized Jacket – £65

12. CrazyPedro’s Pizza Parlour, Manchester

xx

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We’re coming up to the end of February (try and remain calm…) but that does mean that we are almost 1/6th through the year. I decided to write this blog today to let you in on some of the little changes I have been making in my life to show myself some self-care and love, but also to make me a happier, healthier individual.

These are a mixture of food, beauty, and healthcare, and I’d love to know what you’ve been doing too!

1. Yoga

You might remember that at the start of the year I mentioned that I was starting yoga… well we’re almost at the end of month 2 of the year, and I think I’ve only missed one class – plus, that was to go rock climbing so I think that’s allowed… The yoga class I go to is on a Saturday morning, so it really sets you up for the weekend, and the teacher is really helpful. I used to get embarrassed when I fell over from time to time, but now I just feel as though everyone is in the same boat, and sometimes you have to fall down to get back up stronger!

2. Sleep

I’m one of those people who feels so tired throughout the day, yet when it comes to actually going to sleep, could spend the next hour watching YouTube videos or scrolling aimlessly through instagram. At the moment I am trying to limit the amount I watch right before I fall asleep, and read for 15-20 minutes to switch off. I’ve also started listening to the sound of rain (I use an app called rain rain, original…) when I am about to drift off, and I find this really helps me to fall into a deeper sleep quicker.

3. Cutting Caffeine

I always wake up in the night, period. I’ve always just thought that everyone did, but it turns out the majority of people I talk to tend to sleep through. When I started listening to rain sounds and reading before bed but I was still waking up 2 or 3 times during the night, I started to think that maybe it was down to having a cup of tea before bed. I’m not sure how much caffeine there is in tea, or whether it’s all in my head, but I started to drink decaf tea in the evening (i.e. any time after 8pm) and I swear it’s made the difference. Although I still wake up in the night (usually because of my tiny bladder of my boyfriend’s inability to shake a cold) it’s usually only the once!

4. Food Changes

I have a lot of friends who are vegetarian and vegan, and although I agree with many of the reasons for their choices, I still find that with my lifestyle, it wouldn’t really suit me. That said, I have started eating much less meat and diary and try to limit myself during the week – every little helps! Recently as well, after being to a few different health blogging events, I’ve really started to care what I’m putting into my body. I’m never going to be the sort of person who sticks to a strict diet and doesn’t allow themselves chocolate or pizza, and I still tend to eat what I want now and again… but the main change is, what I am ‘wanting’ to eat are foods that are slightly healthier, or high in vitamins or protein-rich because I know they’re doing me more good on the inside.

5. Slow Down

I have quite a reactive personality, which basically means as soon as I think of something, I usually go and do it, but this can also mean that I sometimes can burn the candle at both ends. Because I’m not getting any younger, I’ve really started to listen to my body, and if I’m feeling tired I’ll relax for the evening instead of going out which has helped me value my time in a different way. It’s also helped me save a bit of money which is an added bonus!

6. Make Time For You

Last week I took myself for a massage at my auntie’s salon and it felt so good to have some time that was just for me. Even though I do yoga, I’m terrible at stretching after the gym or in the morning so my muscles get tight really easily. Not only did the massage relieve stress (which I also suffer from) but it allowed me to switch off for an hour and just be pampered which we all need every once in while.

7. Don’t Beat Yourself Up

Life is hard – there I said it: What a cliché, but it’s true. Sometimes we get so down and out about the things we haven’t achieved by a certain age, or that someone else is more successful, or thinner or bought a house first or is married; but in reality, we need to not be so hard on ourselves. Life is different for every single person on this earth, and that’s the beauty of it. We also need to remember that the life that people portray on social media, probably doesn’t include just having an argument with your boyfriend, or feeling bloated because you’re on your period, or crying for no reason because you saw a sad advert. Don’t beat yourself up over the little things, it isn’t worth it.

8. Aveeno Moisturising Oil

I wanted to mention this product because it has been a game changer for me. Last year is the year that I started getting more into beauty and skincare, and up to this point, I never really bothered with all over moisturisers after I got out of the shower because I hated the way they felt on my skin. I was bought this Aveeno moisturising oil (with almond oil) for Christmas, and I’ve used it every day since. It smells absolutely amazing, and it absorbs so quickly that I never have the problem of clothes sticking to me after I’ve applied this. Definitely a recommendation from me!

Have you made any changes to your life this year?

xx

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