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One of the many things I love about living near Cardiff is that the city is home to an e.l.f. store  the first (and, as far as I'm aware, only) e.l.f. store in Europe, in fact  and when they offered to book me in for a makeover* I couldn't refuse.

Everything in the store is set out so you can browse and swatch the products, and I've always found the staff to be very friendly and welcoming, without being pushy. This occasion was no exception ('You're Beth the blogger!')


It's been a long time since anyone has done my make up for me, but Antonia made me feel very relaxed, and asked me what I wanted. Since it's Autumn, I decided on berry lips, and jumped at her suggestion of winged eyeliner to go with it.


Make up products at Elf Store Cardiff

She started with base. The first foundation, a liquid one, was too dark, but the mineral one was spot on (and meant I didn't need a separate powder). Antonia concealed the skin under my eyes, filled in my brows, and then used a light shade of bronzer for contouring. A fairly neutral shade of blush was popped on the apples of my cheeks, and cream highlighter was applied along my cheekbones and the centre of my face.  


Antonia used cream liner to apply the best cat-eye flick ever, which I have yet to recreate myself. I went for brown, as black can sometimes be too harsh in the day, especially with a dark lip. She added a pop of gold mineral eyeshadow to the inner corners, which I wouldn't have thought of doing but loved, so much so that I bought the eyeshadow afterwards. A couple of coats of mascara and my eye make up was complete.


My lips were defined with Lip Liner in Wine, a beautiful berry shade which comes with a blending brush on the end. Red lipstick was layered over the top for the finishing touch. I usually wear lighter shades, as darker ones can sometimes look a little gothic, but this didn't wash me out at all, and when I went to the hairdressers later that day they loved it.

I absolutely love this look. Lots of people in the store commented on how vintage-looking it was, and although it's more glamorous than the make up I'd normally wear during the day I'll be trying it again for sure. If you're ever in Cardiff then I really recommend a visit to the store, whether you want to buy some products, have your make-up done, or just enjoy browsing.




I couldn't resist buying some of the products that were used to create the look, and walked out of the store with:
  • Mineral Eyeshadow in Celebrity, £3
  • Mineral Foundation (SPF 15) in Porcelain, £5.95
  • Cream Eyeliner in Coffee, £3.95
  • Lip Liner & Blending Brush in Wine, £3.95

*Makeovers at e.l.f. Store Cardiff cost £20, which is redeemable against products. My makeover was provided for free, but I purchased some of the products afterwards (there was no obligation to do so).

A Makeover at e.l.f. Store Cardiff

One of the many things I love about living near Cardiff is that the city is home to an e.l.f. store  the first (and, as far as I'm aware, only) e.l.f. store in Europe, in fact  and when they offered to book me in for a makeover* I couldn't refuse.

Everything in the store is set out so you can browse and swatch the products, and I've always found the staff to be very friendly and welcoming, without being pushy. This occasion was no exception ('You're Beth the blogger!')


It's been a long time since anyone has done my make up for me, but Antonia made me feel very relaxed, and asked me what I wanted. Since it's Autumn, I decided on berry lips, and jumped at her suggestion of winged eyeliner to go with it.


Make up products at Elf Store Cardiff

She started with base. The first foundation, a liquid one, was too dark, but the mineral one was spot on (and meant I didn't need a separate powder). Antonia concealed the skin under my eyes, filled in my brows, and then used a light shade of bronzer for contouring. A fairly neutral shade of blush was popped on the apples of my cheeks, and cream highlighter was applied along my cheekbones and the centre of my face.  


Antonia used cream liner to apply the best cat-eye flick ever, which I have yet to recreate myself. I went for brown, as black can sometimes be too harsh in the day, especially with a dark lip. She added a pop of gold mineral eyeshadow to the inner corners, which I wouldn't have thought of doing but loved, so much so that I bought the eyeshadow afterwards. A couple of coats of mascara and my eye make up was complete.


My lips were defined with Lip Liner in Wine, a beautiful berry shade which comes with a blending brush on the end. Red lipstick was layered over the top for the finishing touch. I usually wear lighter shades, as darker ones can sometimes look a little gothic, but this didn't wash me out at all, and when I went to the hairdressers later that day they loved it.

I absolutely love this look. Lots of people in the store commented on how vintage-looking it was, and although it's more glamorous than the make up I'd normally wear during the day I'll be trying it again for sure. If you're ever in Cardiff then I really recommend a visit to the store, whether you want to buy some products, have your make-up done, or just enjoy browsing.




I couldn't resist buying some of the products that were used to create the look, and walked out of the store with:
  • Mineral Eyeshadow in Celebrity, £3
  • Mineral Foundation (SPF 15) in Porcelain, £5.95
  • Cream Eyeliner in Coffee, £3.95
  • Lip Liner & Blending Brush in Wine, £3.95

*Makeovers at e.l.f. Store Cardiff cost £20, which is redeemable against products. My makeover was provided for free, but I purchased some of the products afterwards (there was no obligation to do so).
I spend a lot of time browsing Twitter, checking my emails, creepin' on my Facebook friends, reading blog posts and writing comments, and looking for new Instagram accounts to follow. But it wasn't until recently, when I was heading back to uni, that I realised just how much attention I pay to social media, and electronics in general. I was stuck in my Travelodge room with no WiFi (they did have it but it cost extra, and going back to uni is expensive enough already) and, I thought initially, nothing to do.

I've always thought of myself as being pretty balanced when it comes to social media. I refuse to get Facebook on my phone, for example, since it means that once I've left the house I can only be reached via call or text.

But lately I've noticed that I've been spending a lot of time staring at one screen or another, and I'm not sure I like it. It used to be that I worried my online presence wasn't great enough; now I worry that by focusing too much on the virtual world I'm missing out on the real one.

Don't get me wrong, social media can be a wonderful thing. I keep in contact with family and friends over Facebook; when I'm scrolling through my Tumblr dashboard I can see a photo that makes me laugh out loud, and then read a thought-provoking post immediately after; the #bbloggers chat is my favourite thing about Twitter.


However, during the short time I had no internet access, I devoured the October issue of Elle, which gave me a load of beauty inspiration. I was fully focused on the latest episode of Mock The Week, able to chortle at the discussions about Scottish independence, Boris Johnson, and, of all things, Facebook and Twitter. I finished the the ebook I'd had on the go (Panic, by Lauren Oliver). I sorted out everything for the next day. And then I sat down to scribble this post.


There are things I want to achieve, and they won't get done if I am constantly glued to my newsfeed. There are a tonne of books I want to read – really read, not half-heartedly flick through.


I want to explore more of my uni town, and get to know the area the same way I know back home.

I want to socialise with my housemates and have proper conversations with the people I meet, instead of having one eye on my phone all the time.

I want to develop the short story I wrote for my portfolio last year, and maybe even turn it into a novel one day.

I'll be trying to find a way to do all these things and more, while reducing the amount of time I spend on social media. I want to get the balance right again.

What are your thoughts? Is your life ruled by social media or have you struck a good balance? Do you like to switch off now and then? Let me know in the comments.

Switching Off

I spend a lot of time browsing Twitter, checking my emails, creepin' on my Facebook friends, reading blog posts and writing comments, and looking for new Instagram accounts to follow. But it wasn't until recently, when I was heading back to uni, that I realised just how much attention I pay to social media, and electronics in general. I was stuck in my Travelodge room with no WiFi (they did have it but it cost extra, and going back to uni is expensive enough already) and, I thought initially, nothing to do.

I've always thought of myself as being pretty balanced when it comes to social media. I refuse to get Facebook on my phone, for example, since it means that once I've left the house I can only be reached via call or text.

But lately I've noticed that I've been spending a lot of time staring at one screen or another, and I'm not sure I like it. It used to be that I worried my online presence wasn't great enough; now I worry that by focusing too much on the virtual world I'm missing out on the real one.

Don't get me wrong, social media can be a wonderful thing. I keep in contact with family and friends over Facebook; when I'm scrolling through my Tumblr dashboard I can see a photo that makes me laugh out loud, and then read a thought-provoking post immediately after; the #bbloggers chat is my favourite thing about Twitter.


However, during the short time I had no internet access, I devoured the October issue of Elle, which gave me a load of beauty inspiration. I was fully focused on the latest episode of Mock The Week, able to chortle at the discussions about Scottish independence, Boris Johnson, and, of all things, Facebook and Twitter. I finished the the ebook I'd had on the go (Panic, by Lauren Oliver). I sorted out everything for the next day. And then I sat down to scribble this post.


There are things I want to achieve, and they won't get done if I am constantly glued to my newsfeed. There are a tonne of books I want to read – really read, not half-heartedly flick through.


I want to explore more of my uni town, and get to know the area the same way I know back home.

I want to socialise with my housemates and have proper conversations with the people I meet, instead of having one eye on my phone all the time.

I want to develop the short story I wrote for my portfolio last year, and maybe even turn it into a novel one day.

I'll be trying to find a way to do all these things and more, while reducing the amount of time I spend on social media. I want to get the balance right again.

What are your thoughts? Is your life ruled by social media or have you struck a good balance? Do you like to switch off now and then? Let me know in the comments.

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Beth, 23, South East England. I'm a writer with a love of books, lipstick, and the Oxford comma. I love beauty and I also love animals, so I only buy, use, and feature products from cruelty-free brands. (Seriously though, I am the person who stops to fuss over every dog she sees.) You can also expect posts about vegan/vegetarian food, and plenty of musings about life as a 20-something. Want to get in touch? Email me at beth.toasty@gmail.com

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