Skincare secrets

Skincare is one of the most important and vital aspects of beauty, and an individuals skincare regime is one of the most sacred routines any individual will have. No matter what age, or what skin type you are – a skincare regime is necessary!
My mother has constantly drilled into me from an early age that you should always look after your skin, very, very carefully. And to do so, you must have some sort of routine that you always try to stick to.

It is known that a skincare regime is one of the most complex processes in beauty, simply because it has to be something tailored to the individual as everyone’s skin is different – oily, sensitive, combination, dry – and so it needs to be catered to accordingly.

For this post, I interviewed Nicola McCrindle – a qualified beauty therapist who has over 20years of experience in this particular area, from owning


Nicola McCrindle

her own salon, to working for Champneys (***). She is definitely an expert when it comes to skincare secrets, so I asked her to share with me (and all of you) some of her top tips when it comes to skincare regimes.

I thought it would be beneficial if she outlined a basic, general, skincare routine that everyone could follow. She explained that “even the most basic regime should include a cleanser, toner, and moisturiser of some kind”. I’ve always heard so many people talking about the importance of moisturising, but why is it so essential? Nicola explained that from the start of puberty you should always use a moisturiser – in fact you should use 2! Different moisturisers are needed for night and day as they have different purposes. A day moisturiser can be anything, but in her professional opinion Nicola confessed that a day cream is pointless if it doesn’t contain an SPF (sun protection factor) as the moisturiser is designed to protect your skin from sun, air pollution, etc. Whereas, your night moisturiser serves the purpose of replenishing your skin, by rehydrating and rejuvenating skin cells. The older you get, the more specific creams get as product are generated to target different areas such as; improving the elasticity of the skin to decrease wrinkles.
Another key element for a skincare regime is a toner – theres no point in properly cleansing your face if you don’t use a toner to tighten your pores and stop the build up of blackheads and dirt.  Toners are designed to remove perspiration, make up and oil, but is harmless to the skin. Astringents are a stronger version of toner thats formulated using alcohol – these are typically recommended for people with oily skin.

Other beauty products can be added to a skincare regime depending on your skin and what it needs. For example, eye creams are popular among many people, from young people looking to get rid of dark under eye circles, to older people trying to get rid of wrinkles. Nicola’s advise when it comes to eye cream is “use sparingly, using too much product will puff up the eye area”.

Although this routine is advised, its necessary to make adjustments to it, to make it cater for you personally, factoring in your own skin type – for example, I have oily skin. I’ve always viewed it as a curse, constantly looking shiny is such a pain! So I asked for some advise off Nicola on how to make my oily skin manageable.  She shared that “a good exfoliant is needed in any regime, whether they are a light daily exfoliant containing granuals, or a more powerful exfoliant like an enzyme mask. The key to dealing with oily skin is to not over exfoliate – this is because exfoliants strip your skin of it’s natural oil and so your body tries to make more to combat this. It’s best for someone with oily skin to only exfoliate twice a week – at the most!”

Here are a list of suggestions of good skincare brands:
1. Clinique
2. Clarins
3. Elemis
4. Bare Minerals 
5. La Mer 

If you’re after even more suggestions here is a link to a fabulous webpage that may help called ‘The beauty buys the world is obsessed with’

*** Just thought as a little added extra for those of you who love a bit of pampering, I’d include a map of all the Champneys spas in Britain. I’m personally a big promoter of spas, they leave you feeling relaxed, your skin glowing, and they’re just a fun thing to do with family and friends!

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How to create the perfect smokey eye

Here’s a how to video I created, hopefully clearly demonstrating how to achieve the perfect smokey eye. I love this look in particular as I feel a smokey eye can elevate just about any look – it’s also super easy to do!

Here is the link to my video, it is quite long, I just enjoyed doing it so much I got carried away!

Now, this video is my own personal attempt using a palette I already own – Naked 1 by Urban Decay (£38.50). I use the shades; virgin, naked, buck, and darkhorse to create this smokey eye look in the video. The creamy, highly pigmented shadows are so easy to apply and seamlessly blend together!

I absolutely adoreeee this palette, it’s got so many warm shades with just a bit of a shimmer to help create both everyday and special occasion looks.

But guess what…. Urban Decay actually have an entire palette devoted to creating the most spectacular smokey eye!!! It’s called Naked Smoky (£38.50). However, there is massive range eyeshadow palettes that will all help to achieve a beautiful smokey eye.

Here is a few of my fave ————>

It doesn’t even have to be a palette though! Literally you can use any eyeshadow that you want, mix some together – do whatever you want! Just remember you’re trying to use warm, dark colours, starting with lighter colours, working your way darker using the crease of your eye and blending the shades together. You don’t want it to look like you’ve just let your 4yr old niece to paint your face, layering on strips of bright colours! Blending is the key to any eye look, especially with a smokey eye.

To conclude this post I’ve included a compilation of smokey eye looks that I love, varying in levels of complexity and shades, for a bit of inspiration to all you beauty lovers that would like to try your hand at replicating a smokey eye.

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Beauty: before & after

These before and after pictures show a simple make up look I created on my housemate Alice Brown. The intention of this make over was to develop an everyday casual style, that isn’t too dressy – I was trying to avoid ‘cake face’ A.K.A slapping too much make up on, an ending up with thick layers on foundation, bronzer, etc. Although it’s not too obvious, I used warm brown colours to form a basic smokey eye. <—— See my ‘How to create the perfect smokey eye’ post for instructions on how to do this.


I would just like to remind everyone that I’m not a qualified make up artist in the slightest – I enjoy all things to do with make up, especially doing make up, however I’m definitely not a professional and would never claim to be.

I hope everyone likes this look of a smokey eye, subtle contouring and dramatic lashes.

P.S I want to say a massive thanks to Alice for letting me use her as my model, and allowing me to post the images on my page.

So thank you Alice xoxo


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Moving to Manny

My home town of Milton Keynes is located 153 miles away from Manchester, so I guess you could say moving to Manchester Metropolitan University is a big deal.

It’s one of those major milestones that people always talk about, and consider as one of the most stressful changes in your life.

Well, for me it wasn’t just moving city, and starting university on the 17th September, it was also the day I sat my driving test – talk about stressful!

On Saturday the 17th September, I moved into my new house – Naylor 10 (the party house LOL!)




My new house – Naylor 10!!













Living in a Birley Field Townhouse, entails living with 11 brand new flatmates, all complete strangers. Some may find that daunting, and struggle to adjust to the foreign surroundings. The very first day is an instant challenge, trying to come across friendly and approachable, whilst battling each other for enough fridge and cupboard space. It’s like being thrown in the deep end from the get-go.

So, in order to overcome the 1st meeting awkwardness, we put some music on, drank some alcohol (okay, a lot of alcohol), and had ourselves a party! I can now honestly say, after 17 days we’re all extremely good friends!

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Journalists and their tools

Journalism is a profession dedicated to delivering important information to audiences. Over the years, as technology has evolved this process has developed into journalists supplying information to users not audiences, as the reader takes a much more active role in the 21st century.

In order for this much more active exchange to take place, journalists must adapt to using more modern and technical tools such as; Instagram and WhatsApp.


WhatsApp Logo



Instagram Logo


Instagram and WhatsApp are two different mobile applications, one designed for photo-sharing and social networking and the other is an instant-messaging service. Both apps are extremely popular with billions of people using them worldwide. Therefore they are prime tools to be utilised to aid journalists in broadcasting news stories.

Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in 2010, and was designed to let people share pictures with the world. However, as the app has evolved and numbers skyrocketing to 500 million monthly users [1] – a different purpose for the site has arisen,  purpose which aids news organisations in distributing stories. The convenience of being able to share a 45 second video clip, as well as a concise description of whats happening, with every user on Instagram in a matter of minutes is unbelievably useful to journalists and news organisations. ITV News alone have 111k followers, meaning when ITV post a news story, 111,000 people are instantly alerted to it – making the whole process of news reporting easier! No wonder all major news organisations have Instagram accounts now.

Despite being created the same year as Instagram, WhatsApp is still the more popular app with over 1 billion people using it everyday. As they put it: That’s nearly one in seven people on Earth who use WhatsApp each month to stay in touch with their loved ones, their friends, and their family.[2] It’s ability to directly communicate with individuals instantly is helpful to journalists and aids them in making connections with potential sources, and people on a personal level.

In 2016, the majority of people access the news through various social media platforms, like WhatsApp and Instagram – due to it’s more accessible and convenient nature. This means that modern applications like these are very powerful tools, which grant journalist immediate access to a global audience, and facilitate in news gathering, and the communication of mass media.

As a journalist student hoping to enter into the profession, WhatsApp and Instagram will be useful tools to employ in my assignments. Not only allowing me to communicate my work in a direct, instant and visual way, but also providing excellent practice for when I may need to use them in my career in later life. Despite the character restriction on Twitter, I personally would still consider the site to be slightly more useful than WhatsApp and Instagram simply due to the fast speed of it. With timelines being updated constantly, and various news stories being commented on every second by people all over the world, it is a more beneficial site for journalists and news organisations.







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