Monday, 31 March 2014

Life's little essentials...

Monday, the dreaded start to the week. For me, it's cleaning day, (great!) Being the great procrastinator that I am, coupled with my huge dislike for housework, I got to thinking about life's little essentials. Every woman has them. The trusted items that they could not possibly live without! Now, I'm sure that my partner, Scott would claim a high stake in my arsenal of essentials; and whilst yes, I do hold my loved ones in high regard, I'm talking about those, 'can't live without' items I found scattered all over my dressing table this morning. So here it is, a peek in my bag of tricks:

1. Balmain Silk Perfume

I bought this on the recommendation of a hairdresser. Shortly after arriving in Finland my hair changed from being super sleek to a big, heap of static mess. My morning routine consisted of dressing myself and then spending an unholy amount of time peeling strand after strand of hair from my face and anywhere else the super-charged stuff clung to. I was beginning to feel more, 'Worzel Gummidge' than I felt comfortable with, so on my trip to get the mop chopped I vented my frustrations to the poor hair stylist who said I should give this a whirl. I was told it was an oil-based product which at first, struck fear in me. (Cue images of greasy dos running through my mind.) But after I got over my initial doubts and began to use the product at home, I was pleasantly surprised. It did exactly as it said on the tin, (or the claims on which it was sold.) A few spritzes of this on my towel-dried hair after showering does just the trick. I have also used it mid-washes as a freshen up product and it consistently keeps the frizz at bay. No greasy residue, just shiny, sweet-smelling tresses. A definite must-have for me!

2. Soap and Glory Glow Lotion

This was one of my impulse purchases that definitely paid off! Shopping for, 'Secret Santa' gifts each festive season was one of my biggest annual challenges. What can I buy with my budget? What does the person like? Are they a girly girl or more practical? Hundreds of questions would swirl around my head, bordering on the ridiculous. What does this gift say about me? Thankfully, I knew my victim well and had a good idea of her tastes so I opted for this lovely little lotion as part of her present. I was drawn in by the gorgeous smell and couldn't resist buying a bottle for myself too. A kind of, 'well done you did it' reward for surviving yet another round of xmas shopping. The moisturising cream has a subtle shimmer which leaves your skin feeling radiant and dewy looking. I don't know how well it works for stubborn dry skin and would probably recommend a different everyday moisturiser, but for that extra touch, it's great on your pins for a night out and leaves you feeling, and smelling fab!

3. YSL Touche Eclat

This was one of my more considered purchases. After reading a few reviews online and watching a handful of tutorial videos on Youtube, I decided to give it a go. I headed down to my local beauty counter and the helpful sales girl recommended a shade suitable for my skin tone and the desired effect I was looking for. I wanted something to conceal my, 'I had too much to drink the night before' dark circles around my eyes and a simple product I could use as a highlighter. I had high hopes and expectations from such a popular and well-known brand and I can safely say I was not disappointed! The effect is subtle yet striking. Instantly I felt like I looked awake. It gives you a radiant, youthful appearance and banishes tired, dreary looking eyes. This is a product I absolutely swear by and I'm hooked for life! It's so easy to use, a few clicks and the liquid permeates the soft brush. I use it under my eyes, extending across the top of my cheekbones, down the centre of my nose, under the arches of my brows, a dab on my chin and a tiny bit above and below my lips to make them look more full. In a variety of different shades, you are bound to find one suitable for your complexion and I urge anyone to add this to your collection. You won't regret it!

4. Vaseline

This cheap and cheerful essential is probably found it most households, and for good reason. This fix-it-all is great for a range of purposes, from soothing dry, cracked lips, to taming impossible brows. I have several tins of this wonder product floating around and it's great! Here are some of the weird and wonderful ways I have used Vaseline over the years; slicked on lashes before bed to moisturise them and keep them looking healthy, in fact, plastered all over my face as a moisturiser, (Yes, that happened once or twice.) Brow tamer, lip soother, scar healing, relief for dry heels. The list is endless. As a child, this was always given to treat those minor bumps and scrapes. I'm not sure how beneficial it was, but it did the trick for me. 

5. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Eau de Toilette

My all-time, favourite scent! This classic fragrance oozes elegance and style and it's my go-to perfume for when I want to feel good about myself. I believe it is a statement fragrance that is instantly recognisable and often complimented on. I have tried both the EDP and EDT, and to be honest, I don't really have a preference. It is just down to personal taste when choosing which to go for. I was introduced to Coco Mademoiselle by my Mum, whose taste for fine fragrances has definitely rubbed off on me. It almost reminds me of her, in a good way. That being said, I personally feel that this can be worn by women of all ages. A timeless creation from the Chanel gods. From a luxury brand like Chanel, you expect to pay and this perfume is a little pricey; however, in my opinion it is totally worth it. It's not the only Chanel fragrance I own. I recently received Chance as a gift and fell in love! Another great perfume with a fresher, brighter fragrance. A fantastic choice and a lovely every-day perfume.  

There you have it, my not-so-secret weapons as a woman. 

What are your beauty essentials and which products can you absolutely not live without? 


Sunday, 30 March 2014

A little introduction...

Well, here goes my first post. I suppose I had better say a little something about myself and explain why I decided to create this blog.

My name is Kirsty. I'm an expat living in a sleepy Finnish town with my other half and our guinea pigs; Hamish and Ralph. (There is a pig-related story to tell there but I shall save that for another post!) In February this year we packed our bags, boxes and several cases, waved goodbye to our old home in sunny Qatar and landed feet first in Kotka. Leaving my old life, and job behind has been somewhat, 'challenging' and has led to many new ventures, including this. As well as a teacher of small children, I can now add several new strings to my bow. In the short few months here I have learnt to crochet, cross-stitch, knit a scarf, operate a sewing machine successfully, started writing a children's novel, learnt to ski, attempted to learn Finnish, considered a career in astro-physics and became a blogger. Yes, I really do have far too much time on my hands!

So why, 'Effortlessly Excessive?' I'm pretty sure that my partner would say that this best sums up my personality, fairly adept at making an absolute mountain range out of a molehill and being impossibly impulsive. I argue that this is women in general with a slight awkward look on my face and claim that no woman knows what she wants nor why, she just wants it now.

So what can you expect from me? Frankly, I have no idea but I am determined to post something at least once a week. As I usually have quite a lot to say in life, I expect, (and fear) it may be more. So I guess, watch this space!

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