20 June 2015


If you've been reading my blog for a while then you'll be aware that I'm graduating University this coming Monday and will be hens forth a professional artist. It's a scary thought, making a sustainable living from being a creator. Mostly because its a common misconception that artists don't make money until their dead, for me I sincerely hope thats not true. Not that it's about the money but I need to be able to earn a living in order to do what I love, anyway I'm getting widely off topic.

On the 24th of June, myself and a few of the students I've worked with over the past 3 years will be cutting the metaphorical ribbon on our first ever exhibition outside of an educational institute.
Suda: Release the Elephant

A new breed of critically engaged artists, whose work is diverse, eclectic and freshly liberated from captivity. Witness the extravaganza of their release; as for the first time they explore a new world free from paralysis and confinement.

Suda celebrates recent UCA Fine Art graduates in their release into the art world. Witness the new breed of Fine Artist and their powerful works that celebrate, critic and also rebel against social and political issues.

These new Fine breeds of artists explore diverse themes such as feminism and the battle against mass media, the importance of the artefact and perversion of it. Alongside a variety of abstracted forms documenting content of personal and social struggles resolved through medias of photography and film. Other content includes print, light and sound each exploring the aforementioned media in experimental and alternative ways.

Welcome to the wild; come and watch us perform.
Therefore, if you're in London from the 24th - 28th June, please pop down to Hotel Elephant (London, SE1 6DR) and see our work. I'll be there in person on the evening of the 24th for the private view and the afternoon of the 25th, it'd be so fun to see some of you there.

I understand that the majority of you that read this probably don't live even remotely close to London and those of you who do probably won't want to venture to Elephant and Caste to see a stranger whose words you occasionally read on the internet, but i'd really love to see you!

Love always,
Melissa



13 June 2015


Whether it's a 'your house is on fire' scenario or a 'you have 5 minutes to do your make-up' one, everyone has those products they'd reach for without a second thought. The ones that you would struggle to live without. That concept was quite intriguing so I thought i'd compile a list of products that I loved so much that my life might be effected, even minutely if I had to live without them!

Red Nail Varnish

I alternate my favourite colour nail polish all the time however my all time favourite, 'melissa' colour is post box red. The "red lip classic" thing isn't an easy move for me to make but red nails is a perfect alternative. Revlon's 'China Flower' is the perfect summer shade as it's a little brighter, 'Boudoir' by Ciate is perfect for the colder months because it's much deeper and soulful but 'Double Decker Red' from Rimmel is a perfect all rounder.

Cat Eye Eyeliner

I feel naked without it, i'm going to put that straight out there. Without my always wonky and never twinning flicks, I don't feel like me. My eyeliner of choice to make me feel whole again changes depending on my mood, at the moment i'm besotted with Mac's 'Blacktrack' which applied with the #210 brush (also by Mac) my face looks so much more, like me. What more could I want?

Lip Balm

I think I must lick my lips all the time, which in hindsight must look so, so weird but it's the only reason I can think of as to why my lips always feel chapped. So in the event of 'your stranded on a desert island, what one thing would you take with you' it would undoubtably be lip balm. I love the 'Aloe' one from The Body Shop although it doesn't taste good and smells suspiciously like tobacco but it does an amazing job.

Argon Oil Hair Treatment

I've talked about this on my blog before (you can read it here) without Argon Oil my hair would be a brittle, fizzy mess. Not a pretty sight at all. My hair is thin and curly so ends up looking fairly ridiculous in every humidity if I don't put some sort of hair treatment on it. It also grows at an unbelievable pace, without Argon Oil a snail would be able to slither across the coast of England before even 1inch of length was added to my hair.

MAC 217

Looking back, I probably should have included some sort of eyeshadow because the MAC 217 is pretty useless without a shadow to use it with. Regardless, it's my favourite make-up brush, hands down! It's so easy to use and works magic even when - like me - you have no idea what you're doing!

Concealer

I have some of the bluest under eye circles i've ever seen, it's quite unfortunate. Thank the lord for the invention of concealer! I'm currently loving the 'Creamy Radiant Concealer' by Nars. It's as it states, radiant so adds some much need light and brightness under my eyes. Without concealer I vaguely look like a zombie and other living dead beings.

I had so much fun writing the post, rummaging through my draw of products trying to pick ones that have 'changed my life' so to speak. Pop in the comments any products you would struggle to live without...

Love always,
Melissa


10 June 2015


I don't know why but i've been all about the white, pink and lilac iridescent clothing lately. It may have something to do with what i'm wearing to see Taylor Swift at the end of the month but i'll tell you more about that another time.

I've spent so long already this month google searching holographic clothing and i'm irrevocably in love but at the same time I don't want to end up looking like a space adventurer Barbie. So I've put together some examples of subtle ways you can introduce iridescent magic into your wardrobe without going too sic-fi.



1. RayBan - Round Metal Sunglasses (£143)

I want these sunglasses so, so bad. I'm heading out of the country in July so i'm hoping to pick these RayBan's up in duty free on the way. I just can't think of anything prettier, the frames are dark gold, almost rose gold and the lenses are a mirrored purple/pink. I'm melting inside just thinking about them.

2. The Ragged Priest - Flipper Anorak (£60)

If you're going to a British festival this Summer the chance of rain is particularly high, therefore a raincoat is a must buy. There are tones of cheaper rain coats on the internet but after my days and days of searching this topped my list of favourites by far. The colours are so beautiful you would brighten up even the greyest of days!

3. ASOS - Holographic Belt (£10)

The cheapest item on my list but the most versatile item for sure. Paired with white jeans and a crop top or around the waist of a high rise skirt would be perfect. It's quite a muted hologram effect so if your not feeling so brave then this is a great introduction to the beauty that is iridescent fashion.

4. Whistles - Leather Iridescent Clutch (£40)

I. Love. This. I'm having so much trouble not purchasing this! I wear black all the time, it's my comfort colour so imagine this clutch paired with a little black dress and some cute heels on a night out with some sparkly make-up! Cute, comfortable but sassy.

5. Zazzle - Phone Case (£32.95)

Granted this is a bit steep for a phone case but how could I not include it. It looks great and will seriously jazz up any battered phone, even the most ridiculously shattered screen! You could DIY your own iridescent case using a clear backed bumper case and some holographic paper from the craft store for under £5.

I am so sold on this fashion craze that payday couldn't come sooner this month. I saw this drop dead gorgeous iridescent skirt on Nasty Gal during my searches over the past week but alas it was sold out. Probably a good thing otherwise my purse would be crying tears teeny tiny sparkly tears!

Love always,
Melissa



6 June 2015


I bet you’d be surprised if you googled how many of your favourite cosmetic or beauty brands to see whether they test on animals. I most certainly was when I had this discussion with some of my work colleagues a few months ago. So i've put together this, rather lengthy post about brands and company which do and don't test on animals.

The following is a list of my favourite anti animal testing brands:

Lush

I've put this one first because it probably isn't much of a surprise. Lush are very honest and outspoken about their anti animal testing ideologies and that's something I admire a lot. Lush is like that Facebook friend who is campaigning for world peace and won't stop until they get it!

B. (Is for beautiful)

I really love this brand, it's exclusive to Superdrug and has a great line of products that are great ricals for fellow drugstore brands like Rimmel London and Maybelline.

Milani

In my eyes, Milani is like the prom queen of drugstore cosmetics. 10 times prettier, 10 times better dressed and gets grades that you could only dream of.

E.L.F

E.L.F, the American cousin of B. cosmetics. Need I say much more!

I think it's ironic because all of these brands are really affordable, drugstore brands which are actually fairly low key and not as on the radar as other cosmetic brands. The brands and companies which earn more money from sales are the ones that don't invest in an alternative to animal testing...

Top 10 highest ranking cosmetic companies - USA (Forbes)
  1. Olay (Procter & Gamble) - Tests on animals
  2. Avon - Tests on animals
  3. L'Oreal - Tests on animals
  4. Neutrogena (Johnsons & Johnsons) - Tests on animals
  5. Nivea - Unknown
  6. Lancome - Unknown
  7. Dove (Unilever) - Tests on animals
  8. Estee Lauder - Tests on animals
  9. Biore - Unknown
  10. Shiseido - Tests on animals
L'Oreal are a perfect example of a company that owns many brands, some of which are against animal testing, like Urban Decay and some which still test on animals like Maybelline or Lancome.

Brands which don't test on animals but are owned by a company that does:
  • Urban Decay (L'Oreal) 
  • NYX (L'Oreal)
  • The Body Shop (L'Oreal)
  • Smash Box (Estee Lauder)
  • Aveda (Estee Lauder)
  • Burts Bee's (Clorox)
  • Liz Earle (Avon)
  • Bare Escentials (Shiseido)
  • The Body Shop (L'Oreal)
I don’t expect anyone to stop using their Naked Palettes or quit shopping in MAC. But I thought addressing this might change the way you make your cosmetic purchase decisions in the future, even in the slightest. For instance, if i’m in Superdrug or Boots and can’t decide between a Rimmel eyeliner and a B eyeliner, chances are i’m going to pick up the B version because they don’t test on animals. I’m still going to continue purchasing the Maybelline Colour Tattoo eyeshadows but if there is a better, anti animal testing alternative then i’ll go for that instead. Does that make sense?

You can find out more about animal testing here or check to see if a brand I haven't mentioned tests on animals you can check here using the PETA website.

Love always,
Melissa


3 June 2015


So with my time opening up a little more now that University is over I really want to start working harder over here on my blog. Previously I put about 50% dedication and enthusiasm in to my blog the rest into Uni and my job. So I wanted to tell you a few of the changes and improvements that you should expect on here in the next 6 months! 

1. Complete Re-design

I’m currently working on a redesign of the entire site. I still love my current design so much and it's going to be hard to part with because I put so much hard work into it. But it needs to expand and grow along with my blog. I working on something a little more fresh, similar to my Art portfolio (which you can view here) but a bit more fun. 

2. Sharing is Caring

When the new site launches I really want to introduce monthly sidebar advertisers. Someone very special to me taught me about the importance of supporting and sharing with others. I’m still trying to work out the logistics of the whole thing but i’d like to start a monthly segment where I talk about my favourite developing blogs, advertise them in the sidebar and help each other to grow and make better content.

3. Weekly Segments

At the moment my posts tend to be about products i'm loving or things i'm feeling. It's very personal but sporadic. I post every Wednesday and Saturday which is great, I have a schedule but I'd love for it to be more structured so you can - to an extent - know what's coming. Like 'Throwback Thursdays' or 'Motivational Monday's'.

4. Email Updates

This is something i'm still debating over, I love my email updates from other bloggers. I like the fact they come straight to your inbox, like it was meant just for you, it's so much more personal than searching for a specific blog on Google or Bloglovin in order to read what they have to say. It would be perfect for posts like this one, where I just want to talk to you, but then there's no form of feedback, a way for you to respond. Do you see my dilemma?

I just love so much that 500 of you are interested in what I have to say and it's so important to me to get to know you a little better, i'd like to have more of a relationship with the people that value what I have to say! If you have any suggestions please leave a comment below, i'm itching for some more things to add to my 'very exciting list of changes.'

Love always,
Melissa