Recent Beauty Favourites

It’s been months since I wrote any sort of beauty post on my blog, and since then, I have found loads of new favourites to love and rave about! Without further ado, here are some of my recent loves.

Boots Vitamin E moisture cream 50ml

I bought this during the warm summer as my skin was getting very dried out from the heat and even brought it with me to Cambodia. I have dehydrated skin which can get quite congested, so I was delighted when this cream hydrated my skin and didn’t cause any outbreaks. It even managed to make quite an improvement to the red, scaly skin around my nose and I even found my fiance using it on his ezcema. It costs a whopping €3.99 and it’s a cheap addition to anyone’s vanity table.

L’Oreal Paris GlamShine Stain Splash in Juliet

The famous YSL Glossy Stain dupe made a welcome appearance in my makeup box last May when I picked it up for the vintage shoot. It is a long-lasting stain which wears quite well, I think I get around 8 hours from it and doesn’t transfer while eating, drinking and kissing. My favourite shade Juliet looks cherry red in the tube and applies as that shade on me, but I have seen reviews which show it as a truer red or even an orange red, so do swatch it before buying.

Could this be my perfect go-to red lip? It’s a definite maybe, it certainly ticks a lot of my boxes- flattering shade, durability and non-transference.

Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Facial Pads 

These chemical exfoliant pads are the best thing I have added to my cleanse/ tone/ moisturise routine in a long long time. These pads contain glycolic acid to retexture and resurface your skin and my absolute favourite ingredient for dehydrated skin, hyaluronic acid, to help rehydrate your skin. I run one pad at night over my chin, nose and forehead after cleansing and then gently swipe my cheeks and neck with the remainder.

While they are expensive at €17.99 in Boots, my skin has never looked better with less congestion and a much smoother feel to my skin. I did find that they caused a slight outbreak at first but this is normal with glycolic acid, apparently.

What are your recent beauty loves? Any hates?


Vintage Photoshoot

While I post about photography at least once a week on this blog, I rarely ever post photos of myself. Too frequently, I’m behind the camera and often forget to even think to get a photograph of myself. I think I’ve even had the same Facebook profile picture for a year.

As a treat for myself after the stress of the last 2 months between my depression and being diagnosed with prediabetes, I booked a photoshoot with a photographer. It was mostly to celebrate kickstarting my prediabetes treatment by losing 7 pounds since being diagnosed, but also to help rebuild some of my self-confidence after my recent loss of self-esteem.

I have to say, it was amazing fun. I got dressed up, went to the hairdresser to get the most amazing victory rolls put in my hair, and painted on my favourite red lipstick. The photos are gorgeous and when I look at them, I’m so proud of my recent fightback against my health issues in the last few months.

Dawn (28 of 30) edited

Dawn (8 of 30)

Dawn (21 of 30)


February Review & March Plans

February has been a quiet month around here, between injuries, sickness and busy weekends, there has been very little going on here. March looks to be a far more active and exciting month, and I hope to have a far more interesting post at the beginning of April!



I started to read The Wheel of Time book series in January and during last month, have managed to read Books 5-9 in the series. For those who don’t know, it is a fantasy series by Robert Jordon and Brandon Sanderson spanning 14 books, the last of which was just released in January. I hope to finish the series in March, all going well.

Beauty Products

Revlon Cherry Blossom

My beauty obsession this month is the Super Lustrous lipstick from Revlon in Cherry Blossom. I think it was part of the limited Shanghai collection last year. The lipstick is a dark pink, almost red shade which is super-flattering on pale skin. The formula doesn’t feel drying on the lips and last 3-4 hours before needing to be reapplied. Overall it’s a sophisticated change to my more usual bright red lipsticks and stains.

In The Kitchen


During my time off this month when I was injured, I set myself a project to organise my cookbooks and recipes. I signed up to Pepperplate, a website which allows you to add recipes manually from your cookbooks, clip recipes from websites and create menus, meal plans and shopping lists. It has made the weekly grocery shop so easy with its automatic shopping list and ability to adjust serving size.

I am going to continue this project, filing the recipes in my favourite cookbooks into Pepperplate for even easier weeknight cooking.

Health & Fitness

During February, I couldn’t exercise due to my shoulder injury but now that it is mostly healed, I plan on introducing exercise into my routine again. I am going to start with a walk after work every evening, and eventually work more challenging workouts into my schedule towards the end of the month.

Apart from that, I’m going to try to remain on a good health kick during the weekdays- between giving up Coca Cola and reducing other soft drinks to the rare occasion (read- hangover, night out or junk food night at home), eating more vegetables and fruit every day, and avoiding white bread as much as possible, I think I’m off to a good start for March.


Lately I haven’t been very good for taking photos so I signed up for a photography course last week and as the weather is gradually improving, hopefully I will be outside with my camera again this month.

How was your February, and how is your March shaping up?

Girl Friday: My Style

I saw these questions over on The Lady Named C earlier this week and knew I had to answer them!

How would you describe your style?

I never know how to answer this question. Even back when I used to write a fashion blog, I could never come up with a concise title for my style. Sometimes I can be gamine, vintage and cute, other times I can be a retro femme fatale, sometimes I wear more modern fashionable looks, and occasionally I am a tomboy. The common thread running through my wardrobe is that it has to be comfortable, appropriate to the situation, flattering to my shape and appealing to my own personal aesthetics.

Who inspires your style?

I don’t really have any particular style icon but I do notice how certain characters in a movie or TV show dress and that obviously influences my style. Much more than that, what my friends wear and what people I see when I’m out and about wearing inspires me as well. It’s probably not cool to admit that friends do influence my clothing choices, but some of my friends have the most amazing personal style or take fashion risks I wouldn’t, and seeing that does encourage me to try something that I wouldn’t have tried otherwise.

What are your wardrobe staples?

My wardrobe staples are pretty simple, depending on the season. During the summer- flat shoes, knee-length dresses and cardigans, during winter- skinny jeans, riding boots, leggings, wool dresses and blazers.

What is the most expensive item in your wardrobe?

The most expensive thing is my wardrobe is either my green Reiss dress which I wore to my graduation and to several weddings, or my tan leather riding boots from DuoBoots I bought a year ago which cost me €220. Either way, both were really great buys which I haven’t regretted at all.

What’s your most wanted item?

I don’t really have a wish list at the moment, but there is nothing too urgently needed. A new camera bag from JoTotes or a new winter coat would be fabulous, but I don’t really need them at the moment. (Edit, since drafting this post, I bought a red winter coat in Penneys.)

Favourite Designer?

I’m going to be terribly boring here and be honest. I don’t know my Chanel from my Marc Jacobs, and I don’t really care. I know the fashion houses’ choices about what to put on the runway filters down to the high street, but I just can’t get excited about stuff I will never be able to afford and trends which I will probably never wear.

How much do you spend on clothes?

It varies, depending on what’s in style and what I need in my wardrobe. Some months, I won’t spend a cent on clothes but last month, I had to buy new jeans, tights, leggings, cardigans and boots to get through the winter months. Having lived in a hot country for nearly a year, I don’t think I’ll have to buy any summer clothes for a year or two. As there is little to no need for summery clothes in Ireland, I plan to concentrate my shopping on buying winter clothes and shoes for the next while.

Where do you shop?

I shop in New Look, H&M, Oasis, Penneys, Dunnes Stores, GAP, Warehouse and AWear. I rarely stray from these brands as their clothes fit me well without needing many alterations and I can usually find something I like in them.

Favourite Fragrance?

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle or Lancome Hypnose.

What’s your favourite way to do your hair?

I have short hair so I can’t really style it. I’m trying to grow it out though so I can try some of the amazing hairstyles I see on Pinterest. I always go through this internal conflict every year about my hair, but I’ve had short hair for nearly 4 years so it’s time for a change.

What’s your go-to outfit when you have no idea what to wear?

Red fifties style dress- colourful enough to grab attention, smart enough to cover most social situations and fun enough to make me happy, patterned tights, flats and red lipstick. It just works.

One fashion trend you wish would come back and stay?

I’m not too sure. Fashion lately has been about reinterpreting trends and bringing back fashion, so I’m sure trends will keep coming back. I really wish skinny jeans and boots will stick around for a long time as they’re the perfect solution to rainy Irish weather.

What’s the most prized possession in your wardrobe?

My black heels- they are the only pair of heels in my wardrobe which I can wear for more than 2 hours without getting blisters.

What advice would you give to someone who is fashion conscious?

Invest in clothes which fit you well and will last more then one season. If you want to buy into trends which aren’t going to last beyond that season, look in Penneys or H&M. If you’re wearing a white or cream top, wear a nude bra underneath it cos we can all see your white bra. More from personal experience here: wearing colourful clothing is really uplifting but there is a thin line between the girl who looks fab in red and the girl who looks like she escaped from clown college for the day. If you have to ask someone if a skirt is too short or a top is too revealing, then it probably is.

Girl Friday: Aussie Mega Shampoo & Conditioner

Anyone who has short hair knows straight away that the trade-off for an easy and cute pixie cut are two very annoying things: having to go to the hairdresser every six weeks for a trim and having to wash your hair everyday. You see, us short-haired girls don’t really have any way to cover up a bad hair day, and the only solution to it is washing your day nearly every day.

So when you’re washing your hair everyday, you need to use products which won’t build up in your hair- something like Aussie’s Mega Instant Shampoo & Conditioner. It contains Kangaroo Paw Flower Extract and promises daily use without the build-up. I’ve found about this is not only does it deliver on that promise, that my hair is soft, smooth and looks really healthy too.

Of course, the best thing is that Aussie haircare products are on special offer every couple of months in Boots that it’s so handy to stock up on for an easy bargain.