Thursday, 26 June 2014

Pokémon | Top 5 Episodes of Series 2 | The Orange Islands

I'm really excited to be writing another of these posts, as childish as it may be. Last month, I posted my top 5 episodes from series 1 of Pokémon and now, I'm going to give you my top 5 from series 2, The Orange Islands!

The anime evolved (no pun intended) from a series of games. The plot sees Ash Ketchum on his journey to become the world's greatest Pokémon master. Pokémon (Pocket Monsters) are like animals but you can catch, train and battle them. A lot of people say it encourages animal cruelty but I think this is ridiculous. It's just a game and TV show etc and actually, the Pokémon are usually more than happy to battle!

The Orange Islands says a temporary goodbye to the much loved character, Brock and hello to Tracey Sketchit who I find has similar traits to Brock, such as their love for girls and good knowledge of Pokémon.

Before I begin, please note that when I say the episode number, eg. 114, I mean the 114th episode ever. There are only 36 episodes in this series but I'm taking into account the first series and all banned epsiodes up to this point as well (there are 2 in series one). So episode 114 is known as 111 everywhere but Japan... Does that make sense? Probably not.

Before I confuse myself further, here are my top 5 episodes from series 2!

5. Episode 99: Tracey Gets Bugged
The trio arrive on Murcott Island, famous for its bug Pokémon. They come across an injured Scyther who is unwillingly taken by them to the nearest Pokémon centre. They discover that Scyther lost leadership of its swarm from battling a younger Scyther challenger, forcing it to live in exile unless it wins another leadership match. As you may have guessed, the kids try helping Scyther regain his self-esteem. What I loved about this episode was seeing Scyther's personality and pride. I like getting to know a bit about different Pokémon attitudes and mannerisms and seeing this emotionally hurt Scyther fight back was weirdly touching and I admire its strength. The relationship between this Scyther and the Scyther it lost its leadership position to is really interesting - but I won't give too much away.

4. Episode 114: Enter the Dragonite
I had a real hard time picking between this episode and 113, Hello Pummelo. The two episodes are connected and part of one long pokémon battle. But, the reason I chose this episode is because of the dragons and the immense battling! Ash finishes his battle with Drake for the Orange League Championships. We see Drake's Venusaur and Electabuzz and Ash's Tauros and Bulbasaur followed by Drake's Dragonite and Ash's Charizard. Dragonite is pretty strong and Ash has to use various other pokémon in his battle against it. Of course, Team Rocket plot to capture the Dragonite once weakened... We all know how much I love Team Rocket so I just constantly wait for their scenes! I don't want to give the ending away but it's definitely worth a watch and if you listen carefully, Ash give a little clue to an event in a future episode!

3. Episode 98: Meowth Rules!
I love Meowth. This episode sees him abandon Team Rocket for a life of luxury as leader of a group of human Meowth worshippers who believe he is the Great Meowth of Bounty and will use Pay Day to bring them good fortune. Meowth keeps it secret that he doesn't actually know Pay Day so he doesn't have to give up his new life. We see him pretend he doesn't know Team Rocket and gets them kicked off the island. But again, Team Rocket show they really do have good hearts deep down (way deep down). When Meowth is put into a ring with a Nidoking and then an Onix in order to encourage him to use Pay Day, Jessie and James try to save him by throwing James' precious gold bottle cap collection to make the villagers think Meowth is the Great Meowth of Bounty. I just love how much Team Rocket care for one another. They may argue a lot and can be quite selfish in most episodes, but when it comes down to it, they always look out for one another.

2. Episode 106: Bound For Trouble
As mentioned before, I'm obsessed with Team Rocket and Pikachu is my favourite Pokémon. Team Rocket use reverse psychology to trap the kids. Meowth fastens a belt around Pikachu's waist that is connected to one around his own waist for which Jessie holds the key. But a giant Pidgeot swoops down and picks Meowth and Pikachu up and carries them away. The rest of the episode focuses mainly on Pikachu and Meowth. Why this episode? The relationship between the two Pokémon is adorable. Of course, the arguments begin and Pikachu constanty has the threat of Thundershocking Meowth in order to get him to follow his lead. I don't want to give away all the cute scenes but there is one part where Pikachu shares his apple with Meowth and I just... EEK! I get all excited like I've just been given a kitten!
If you enjoy TV errors, then you might notice that when Meowth and Pikachu land after the giant Pidgeot drops them, they are not wearing their connectors!

1. Episode 107: Charizard Chills
The trio meet Tad and his Poliwrath who puts Pikachu to sleep in a battle against Ash. Ash chooses to send out his disobedient and untrained Charizard who of course does not listen to Ash and refuses to battle. Poliwrath then freezes Charizard with Ice Beam. Ash and his friends spend the whole evening trying to heat the fire Pokémon up so his tail flame doesn't go out (which would lead to his death). We get a really touching speech from Ash and when Charizard recovers, he has new found respect for him. Ash's Charmeleon evolved in episode 46 in The Indigo League and has completely ignored all commands since. This epsiode was a long time coming and I absolutely loved seeing their relationship grow and to again see just how much Ash cares for his Pokémon.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

The problem with VOGUE

Like most other magazines, VOGUE has adapted itself throughout the years to accommodate its ever changing audience. We are modern. We are not the women of 1892, when Vogue was founded. This is the twenty-tens...

But nowadays, British Vogue has mostly celebrities and the occasional model on its cover. I cannot comment on the U.S, Parisian, Italian or any other editions of Vogue, but I can comment on the one in my country. As beautiful as Claire Danes (November 2013), Kristen Stewart (October 2012), Beyoncé (May 2013) and Adele (October 2011) looked as Vogue cover stars, I cant help but pine for models.

I'm an avid Elle and Company reader. I can't get enough. I love their mix of cover girls. I love how Company has bloggers, young new models, singers and actresses on its cover - my feelings are the same towards Elle. Both contain intelligent copy, great items of clothing and luscious beauty products and I love them for what they are. Yes, they have changed over the years. In fact, Company had a massive design change, seeing its size, paper and content (both written and visual) adopt a younger, edgier feel. For some reason, I can accept these changes.

I picked up this month's issue of Vogue (July 2014) and couldn't put down the glossy until I had read every single page. Why? It's simple. The cover star.

Christy Turlington.

For those who may not know, Turlington is a 45-year-old American model who represented Calvin Klein for 20 years amongst many other campaigns, including Versace. Oh, and if you have your belly button pierced, you can thank her for bringing hype to the piercing at a 1993 fashion show.

A model. Turlington is a model and for that, July 2014's Vogue was 100% amazing.

I'm aware that I'm probably in the minority when I say this, but I firmly believe that actresses and musicians should not make it as cover stars on this glossy. That job should be left to models. To me, they are fashion. They are beauty. They are VOGUE.

 In all fairness to British Vogue, they have had a fair few models on the cover lately but I want more. I understand that Vogue needs to change. It needs to keep its readership and most women of today are interested in celebrity fashion and news. For this reason, I understand the move. I can also accept seeing actresses or musicians inside the magazine... But not the cover.

Do you agree that Vogue is a model's world or do you like the beaut celeb cover girls?
Let me know what you guys think in the comments and please excuse the little hot chocolate stain on my desk in the second picture! I didn't notice it.

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Liebster award || Nominated!

First and foremost, I would like to thank Alice from The Velvet Black for this nomination (her name is clickable btw)! I love reading these posts on different blogs so I'm really excited to have been nominated. 

What are the rules?
I thank the blogger who tagged me
I say 11 facts about me
I answer the 11 questions written by the person who tagged me
I write my own 11 questions
I tag 11 up and coming bloggers

11 facts about me:
I once auditioned for Sophie Webster in Coronation Street and got to the final 12.
I am obsessed with the original three Spyro games by Insomniac.
And Pokémon... I love Pokémon... A lot.
And Adventure Time.
There are only two people who I am 100% at ease around - my boyfriend and my best friend (not even family).
I love old black and white horror films.
I've competed nationally in taekwondo and won silver because I messed up a little (I beat myself up pretty bad about it).
I rarely drink anything other than water and coffee.
I dislike having green eyes but love them on other people.
I have a condition called hyperhidrosis on my hands and feet (uncontrollably sweaty - so gross).
Chanel no.5 is my go-to perfume.

My answers:
If you could only choose 5 makeup products to use everyday, what would they be?
I try to avoid everyday makeup. I wear it about once every two weeks. But I would pick MAC Zoom Lash mascara, Rimmel Wake Me Up concealer, Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in Sandglow, Soap & Glory Super Cat eyeliner and The Body Shop Lightening Touch highlighter.

If you could be a character from any movie, who would you be?
Is it weird to pick a boy? No? Then Legolas.

Summer or Winter?
Winter. Summer actually makes me miserable. I hate the sun.

If you were a type of food, what food would you be?
I want to say avocado but I'm going to say onion so that if anyone tried to hurt me, I'd make them cry.

Would you read a book that had your whole life story - everything until the day you died?
Nope. I don't want to reflect on the past and I don't want to know my future.

How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
I shower and put on clothes... So about half an hour? Unless I'm wearing makeup - then about an hour.

What's your favourite SS14 trend?
Arty clothes - but I won't be wearing them.

Sweet or savoury?

If you could live anywhere (including fictional places) where would you live?
I'd say Westeros but there is too much death. Maybe Vashj'ir or Dalaran from World of Warcraft. In reality? London or LA.

Would you rather be laying on a beach or camping at a festival?
Festival. Without a doubt. I love them. Screw the beach.

What's your favourite animal?

My questions for bloggers:
If a burglar stole everything in your wardrobe and makeup bag but left only 3 items in each, which 6 items would you hope they left (3 makeup, 3 clothing)?
Fruit or vegetables?
What is the wildest thing you have ever done?
What is your favourite book?
Do you believe in anything supernatural (ghosts, aliens, vampires etc)?
What is your favourite movie quote?
What is your drink of choice?
Which do you think about more: the past or the future?
Do you let your nail polish chip or top it up so it's always perfect?
If you had to be locked in a room (unlimited food and water supply) with one person until 2020 (dead or alive, real or fictional) who would it be?
What is the one thing you hate having to buy?

The bloggers I nominate are:

All blogs above are clickable... I really need to make hyperlinks look obvious. 
Let me know if you guys complete it. I'd love to read your posts.

Thanks again, Alice! 

Saturday, 14 June 2014

CARMEX review || My holy grail

If there is one product that I swear by, it has got to be Carmex. 

I know a lot of people are aware of this product but my blog felt incomplete without a Carmex post!

My love for Carmex began 10 years ago (when I was 10). I was in London visiting my new baby cousin, Cián. His father's two twin girls, who are the same age as me, were there. One of them had unbelievably chapped lips to the point where there was about a centimetre of red, flaky skin around her lips. My mum told her to use some Carmex and her lips healed fully in about a week. During this time, I decided I loved the smell and wanted to start using it (party because I thought her London accent was cool and therefore, she was cool). And the rest is history...

I love how soothing this product is. It fixes your chapped lips within no time at all, smells like no other product and is unbelievably long-lasting. I could apply it before bedtime, have a 10 hour sleep and wake up still wearing it! Of course, if you're applying it in the day, activities like eating, drinking and talking will wear it off sooner but it will still last a good few hours.

I recently ran out of my current tub which lasted me almost two years. I usually buy it from Boots or Superdrug and it costs about £2.69 but my new tub (the fancy, comic-book inspired pot) was from Body Care and cost £1.49, I think. 

The tubs have a 24 month shelf life which is roughly how long it takes for me to use them all up so if you thought the cost was a bit too much for lip balm and you're a £1 ChapStick kinda person, then at least you know this will last you a long time.

I usually get the original Carmex lip balm (pictured above) but there are so many different smells, packagings and types.

Smells: Original, cherry, strawberry, vanilla, lime twist, pomegranate, mint... I think that's everything.

Packaging: Carmex lip balms are available in little pots which help moisturise lips and relieve the symptoms of cold sores (SCORE!); squeezable tubes which have an added clear, odourless mineral oil for extra smooth treatment and sticks which contain more wax to help keep its shape.

Types: The standard, original product (pictured above) comes in lots of flavours and all three different types of packaging. An Ultra Smooth stick is available in Lime Twist, Vanilla and Pomegranate. These flavours are unique to this type of Carmex, also containing additional moisturising ingredients. Ultra Hydrating Moisture Plus also comes in stick form but with super funky packaging (I think the hounds tooth is my fave). These contain aloe, shea butter and vitamin E and leave a clear finish whilst protecting your lips from the sun with SPF15.

I get cold sores and honestly, this product helps relieve them. It has a minty feeling all over your lips but it doesn't sting (super soothing on cracked and chapped lips) so when applied to my cold sores, it completely relieves any tenderness or that annoying itchy sensation. This year, I've had about 10 cold sores so far and last year, I had about 15 in total. Before that, I only ever got them twice a year - my birthday and Christmas. I think all the stress of university has caused my recent outbreaks (as well as eating almonds which I have developed an intolerance for. If there is even a sniff of almond in something, I will 100% get a cold sore). Carmex has been really helpful during these times.

I also got my boyfriend into the product... Yep. He loves it now!

I love how retro the packaging is. My newest tub is a limited edition design for Selfridges so I'm not quite sure how I managed to get it in Body Care but I'm not complaining.

With all the different options, Carmex is bound to suit anyone! I honestly recommend it and would give it a 10/10 - it's truthfully that good. Totally justifiable, even on a student budget.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

Lush Gorgeous facial moisturiser review

A while back, I received a bunch of complimentary goodies from Lush.

I reviewed two of the products that I received but haven't got round to testing the others until recently.

So this is the Gorgeous facial moisturiser review!
I received the Hello Gorgeous box and inside was this 10g trial size version of the Gorgeous moisturiser. 

Here are the facts:
☮ It contains 18 natural ingredients and 7 safe synthetics
☮ None of the ingredients have been tested on animals
☮ It's vegetarian
☮ It costs £39.95 for 45g

My experience?

First, I must comment on the smell. As you can probably guess, it smells divine - like most Lush products. It smells fresh, light and little bit like orange-scented flowers.

One thing I have to say about Gorgeous is how universally suitable it is for all skin types. If you have dry skin, you'll notice how it soaks into any patches but isn't too heavy. If you have oily skin, it will hydrate you but not leave a thick layer on top of your oily spots. And, if you're like me and have combination skin, it's basically perfect. 

This product goes a long way. One little scoop on your forefinger and it's more than enough to cover your face and even a bit of your neck. I only have a 10g sample but I imagine that a 45g tub would last a long time (though, the expiration date might be a problem).

It is quite runny - something I'm not really used to with moisturisers - but I suppose this helps it to soak into your skin.

It contains pineapples which contain enzymes to help refine pores; fresh organic limes and oranges to help skin stay matte/not develop extra oil and remove dead skin cells and orange blossom honey water to soothe and moisturise. 

Gorgeous is perfect for anyone with dull or tired skin as it really brightens you up.

Overall, it is a little bit too expensive for a student, like myself. Almost £40 on moisturiser? I just cannot justify it when I can get a Simple moisturiser for about £3.99. Nevertheless, if you have a spare £40 to spend on beauty products, I would definitely recommend trying it. If you don't want to part with your money on a product you aren't sure about, ask for a sample in store.
I do love how this moisturiser made my skin look and feel and I was really surprised that I didn't break out in a rash due to my sensitive skin. Hallelujah!
I'd probably rate this an 8 out of 10. It would easily have been a 9 if the price wasn't quite as steep.

Thanks, Lush! 

Festival Lust List

Summer Lust List

Festival season is here and sadly, I have nothing lined up.
*sobs into pillow*

Despite the fact that I won't be going to Leeds, Download or Glastonbury *sniffles* I have been spending hours and hours online looking for what I would buy if I was going to a festival.

So I took to Polyvore to find my favourite pieces and pop them together to share on my blog.

Click here for my Polyvore profile.

1. Dr Martens Clarissa - £90

Buy here at OFFICE 

2. Urban Decay Electric palette - £38

Buy here at DEBENHAMS

3. Grafea Checkerboard Backpack - £210

Buy here at HARRODS

4. Joss & Main Electric Haze Pillow - Now unavailable :(

Was available here at JOSS & MAIN

5. Jordan Carlyle Vanity iPhone5/5S Case - £21.69

Buy here at SHOPBOP

6. Motel Luella Jumpsuit - £38

Buy here at MOTEL ROCKS

7. Monki Amber Top - £12

Buy here at MONKI

8. Dolce and Gabbana Shorts - £195

Buy here at YOOX

9. Bibi Bijoux Pink Crystal Double Wrap Bracelet - £90

Buy here at BIBI BIJOUX

10. The Pool Party Tie Dye Hair Ties - £6.43

Buy here at ETSY

Monday, 2 June 2014

Summer check list

I have a lot to do this summer and not a lot of money to do it with!

All photos in this post are blurry as they are from Instagram and only taken on an iPhone before I had my Canon 600D!

So the first thing I need to do is to get a job. I should be getting my old job at Starbucks back but my boss has just moved to a new store and a new manager has moved into my store. In the past, my old boss, Ionel (pronounced yo-nel - he is Romanian), kept me on the pay roll so I could work during the university holidays. I started working there when I was 17 during my A-levels and I worked my butt off. He grew to like me a lot and always gave me shifts when I needed them. Anyway, this new manager seems a little less friendly. I went in a couple of days ago to hand in my mobile number but he just didn't really seem to understand my position there. So I texted my old boss and asked him to put in a good word for me...

How lovely?! There are two other girls called Lauren that work there but I've been there the longest. I miss being a barista! I just want to work again. I'm such a worker bee. I've had a job since the age of 13 and it feels weird to not be working. Oh, how I miss coffee making!

The next thing on my to-do list is birthday presents! I have father's day and my dad's birthday right next to one another. I don't know whether to buy him a tree/plant, some new trainers, a gadget for his house or some aftershave/smelly product. Alternatively, we could go shopping in Manchester together. He is so difficult to shop for!
I then have my mum's birthday mid-July. Really unsure what to get her so I might speak to my auntie because my mum loves copying her older sister - which is totally understandable since my auntie always looks great. I usually opt for anything Clarins or Benefit but I want to switch it up a bit this year. She'll be 43 this year so she is still quite young. 
After mum, I have my uncle... Erm... Haven't a clue what to get him!
Then it's my Grandma's at the start of July. I might get a distressed-looking photo frame with a picture of me, my sister and my two cousins in it.
After that, I have my sister's 6th birthday. You'd think buying for children would be easy but it really isn't when she has pretty much everything you could possibly think of! 
(Sorry the photo is blurry!)

I look like a mole in that photo...

I want to start working on my third year project/dissertation. Since i'm studying journalism, we don't have to write an academic essay, though it is an option. I have decided to take the project approach and am going to create a magazine with original content and write 7000 words on it. This summer, I want to have sketched up a drawing of what each page will look like and have a few interviews in my back pocket ready to start making the magazine on QuarkXPress 10 when I get back to uni at the end of August. 

As part of my course, I need to get work experience at any newspaper, magazine etc. I wanted to go to a London-based magazine but I can't afford to travel into the city everyday for 4 weeks (as most internships last that long) and I think I'm babysitting my sister a bit anyway. So I'm going to ask my local newspaper if they will take me on for at least a week, hopefully two and then get the third compulsory week in December/January. I've tried emailing and phoning but they just won't get back to me so I'm going to go in as soon as my final exam is over... 

Finally, I need to start driving again. I started to learn when I was 17 but ran out of money and had to pack it in. I'm now 20 and I only have one year left at university before I enter the real world and possibly need a car - not that I will be able to afford one! I texted my old driving instructor yesterday and asked if he could fit me in. He said yes but not until the first week of July, which is a bit of a nightmare. So my plan is to pass my theory test during June so I can get straight into driving without having to worry! I'd like to pass the driving test during the Christmas holidays... I'll keep you posted on my driving progress once I start!

I just feel like I have so much to do and not enough time or money to get it all done! Summer sounds busy, but that's just how I like it!