Saturday, 28 September 2013

The Liebster Award

Liebster Award

Earlier on this week I was lucky enough to be nominated for a Liebster award by Megan from Miss Mad About Nails. Basically the Liebster award is given to blogs by other bloggers to recognise and recommend those with 200 followers or fewer. If you are nominated for an award you must nominate 10 bloggers for the award and be sure to let them know! Next you have to answer a series of questions and come up with 10 questions of your own, these questions are there for the bloggers you recommend to answer. It is a lovely way to get to know other bloggers and seek out recommendations, if there is a blog I love then I'm sure you will love it too! 

The questions I was set by Megan:

Whats your all time favourite foundation?
I haven’t found my perfect foundation yet but right now I’m love Bourjois 123 mixed with a little moisturiser to sheer it out.

How long have you been blogging?
I’ve been dabbling with blogging since 2012 but I’ve been regularly posting since June 2013. 

If you could only use one brand of makeup from the drugstore/ highstreet for the rest of you life, what brand would you choose?
I only really buy drugstore make up so I’ve had a chance to try a lot of brands but it’s really hard to choose from them all. I really love MUA for pretty much everything but I’d never use their foundation because I find the shade range isn’t light enough.

Describe yourself in 3 words?
Predictable. Awkward. Compassionate.

Jeans or Dresses?

Heels or flats?

How long do you spend blogging a week?
It varies from week to week depending on what I’m up to, it’s usually about 4 hours though.

Link your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram here:

What colour are your nails right now?
They are Avon Sea Breeze with Avon Color Trend silver glitter on my ring fingers.

Lastly, what mascara would you recommend to everyone in the world, if you had the chance to?
I adore Falsies by Maybelline it is actually amazing!

My questions:

1. Why did you first start blogging?

2. What's your favourite time of year and why?

3. What kind of blog posts do you enjoy reading and why?

4. What is your favourite high street clothing brand?

5. What food do you adore?

6. What is your favourite beauty product under £10?

7. What are your three favourite blogs to read?

8.  If you could only wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?

9. What is your favourite word to say?

10. What advice would you give to anyone reading this?

My nominees:

I look forward to how everyone answers my questions and I hope all my readers get to discover some lovely new people too!

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Beauty Splurge: DIY Jumper or Sweater Ideas

As autumn is starting to set in it's time to start thinking about getting some more season appropriate clothing, jumpers are an instant way to update from summer to autumn but they can be stupidly expensive. Beauty Splurge has created a tutorial detailing how to create 5 interesting jumper designs which will definitely save you money! 

Share your creations on the Slightly Skint Facebook or on Twitter!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Student Beans: 7 Cheap 10 Minute Meals for Freshers Week

Today's post is from who have collected 7 quick and cheap recipes to get you through Freshers Week and the rest of uni. Although I'm not a fresher I have been enjoying freshers week, my poor liver. Click the logo above to be taken to their post.

Let me know what you've been getting up to in freshers week in the comments, on Twitter or on Facebook

Saturday, 21 September 2013

ELF Store in Cardiff?!

Eyes Lips Face launched online in the UK in 2007 and this year sees their first ever physical store which will be situated in Cardiff's Royal Arcade. Although their products can be a bit hit and miss the majority of what they have to offer is not only affordable but also good quality. With the store open there will be more chance to sample the products before you buy which is amazing news for everyone. I love ELF cosmetics and have been loving the brand since mid 2008. My personal favourite products are their Blush in Merry Berry and the Waterproof Eyeliner Pen in black. If you are in Cardiff then you should definitely visit the shop and if you aren't you can find everything online at

Why oh why do I not live anywhere near Wales?

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Cheap Eats: Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Mushroom Sauce

Cooking Dinner

A couple of days ago on my Facebook page I showed the above photo as a sneak peek of this post, well it's finally here! This post is a recipe for a twist on the classic chicken and mushroom combination which has many incarnations mostly in pies and as flavouring for instant noodles. This version is a little bit more up market compared to the last examples and would be best served for a date night or if you fancy treating yourself. I guarantee this will be just as tasty as something you'd find in a restaurant but for a fraction of the cost. The recipe I'm using here will serve two people.

Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Mushroom Sauce

Chicken and Veg2 chicken breasts - £3.50ish
100mls double cream - £0.40
2 garlic cloves - £0.06
200g mushrooms - £0.40
2 rashers of streaky bacon - £0.20
Chicken stock cube - £0.02
2 carrots - £0.15
2 handfuls of spinach - £0.20 (or other veg you like)
Olive oil - £0.02

Total = £4. 77/£2.38ish per portion

1. Pre-heat your oven to about 200. Prepare your chicken breasts by wrapping a rasher of bacon around each breast and placing on a baking tray. Cover the chicken with foil, this will prevent the breasts (ooo er) drying out and the bacon burning to a crisp. Once the oven is up to temperature place the chicken in the oven for around 30 minutes. Take the cream out of the fridge so it can get to a slightly warmer temperature.

2. Whist the chicken is cooking you can prep your sauce and veggies. First you need to put some olive oil in a frying pan and heat it up to a medium heat. Olive oil has a low smoking point so ensure you don't set the heat too high otherwise your kitchen will look like an episode of Stars In Their Eyes but without Matthew Kelly or a sequinned costume. Next finely chop the garlic and add this to the pan once you are done. You also need to chop your mushrooms into quarters or eighths depending on the size mushrooms you are using and add those to the pan too. You might as well chop the carrots whilst you are chopping stuff, I did match sticks because I think they taste/look better.

Chopped Vegetables and Garlic

3. Now you need to boil some water in the kettle, you need enough to steam your veg (or boil it) and make 200ml of stock. Give your mushrooms a good stir and add some pepper. You now need to make up your stock and add it to the pan then let it simmer and reduce down. At this point your chicken should have been in the oven about 20 minutes.

Mushroom Sauce

4. Have some wine. 

5. Your chicken should have been in the oven about 30 minutes now, so you need to take the foil off it so it can crisp up and get all delicious looking. You should also start steaming your veg. I did carrots first because they take longer to cook (around 7 minutes) compared to spinach which ideally needs about 2 minutes.

Chicken Cooking

 6. Once you have a thick mushroom sauce you need to remove the pan from the hob so the sauce
can cool down a little. You now need to wait until the chicken and veg are cooked.

7. Have some wine.

8. Once everything is cooked you need to plate up the veg and chicken. Now add the cream to the sauce stirring it all in thoroughly, serve this immediately on to the chicken and get stuck in!

Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Mushroom Sauce

I hope you enjoy this recipe! Let me know how you get on via Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

Massive thank you to Richard Taylor for the photos

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Cheap Train Travel

This post was requested by my dear friend Krystal who travels back home from university via train a fair bit. She was shocked to discover that certain websites add additional charges for for things like paying by credit card/paypal or simply for just using their service. Train ticket prices are set to rise which makes these charges even more annoying and making rail travel less viable. Here is my list of tips to help save you money on rail travel.

1. Use
Most people know it is much cheaper to buy tickets in advance online, in recent years the number of websites selling tickets has increased dramatically with every company trying to get hold of your money using gimmicks and advertising without telling you all the details. don't charge for using credit cards, they allow you to collect your tickets for free from train stations and best of all they don't charge a booking fee. Most of the other major online retailers have various charges when you book with them. The site is really easy to use and clearly displays which times are the cheapest, how many stops they have and  how much the journey would cost if you were buying a return or if you were buying singles. Sometimes buying singles can be most cost effective, to learn more about ticket splitting click here.
2. Use a Railcard
For some people a railcard will not save much money but there are ways to ensure it does. In the past I have bought railcards at full price, but in the last 2 years I haven't. A full price 16-25 railcard at £30 would take me at least 6 journeys (travelling my usual route from Sheffield to Lincoln) before I'd start to save money. I usually do travel more than 7 times a year so it is cost effective for me to buy one but you can also find railcards at discounted rates which makes the saving even greater! Tesco run a scheme where you can exchange your clubcard points for various things including discounted railcards. So instead of costing you £30, you can exchange your points and get a railcard half price! Don't have clubcard points? Don't worry you can get 20% off a 16-25 railcard here. Not only do railcards entitle you to 1/3rd off your travel you can also get money off various attractions. If you are a mature student, you are now eligible to apply for a railcard, for more information click here. If you still can't get hold of a railcard you can always ask for one as a gift from a family member.

Let's face it, everyone hates coaches but sometimes they are actually the cheapest option. Often they do take a lot longer than rail travel but if you aren't in a rush and you're really strapped for cash then it might be worth looking into, you can always do a bit of homework to pass the time. National Express have their own Young Persons Coachcard which costs just £10 a year and is for those in full time education or people aged 16-26. Over 60's can get a coachcard too so it might be worth telling your nan. 

I hope you've found this post useful!

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Top 10 Beauty Products Under £10

Today's post is about my favourite budget beauty products. When I read glowing product reviews I'm usually inspired to buy products but then find that they are too expensive for my budget. Some times we all need a bit of a pick me up or we just want to change our routine a little, the products in this collection aren't going to cost you an arm and a leg so if you do decide to try them you won't have to re-mortgage your house in order to do so.

10 Products Under £10

1. Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula Lotion - £4.29
This is one of my favourite body lotions, it is moisturising and smells amazing. I have tried other cocoa smelling products but they come off too artificial whilst this smells like sweet chocolate. It sinks into the skin beautifully so there is no oily residue left.

2. Aldi Baby Lotion - £0.79
I use baby lotion on a cotton pad to remove my eye make-up. So far it is the most reliable and not to mention cheapest ways of removing stubborn mascara. The Aldi one is the cheapest I've found but if you don't live near an Aldi you could try a supermarket own brand as all of these products tend to be very similar.

3. Palmers Cocoa Butter - £3.25
Another product from Palmers but this one is for when you need a little bit more nourishment. Recently everyone is the beauty world has been buzzing about coconut oil and how multi-purpose it is. Coconut oil is quite expensive and I was put off by versions of it that had perfume added which meant that it couldn't be used in as many ways. I put it on my face and it stung like hell and tasted chemically when  I used it as lip balm. This cocoa butter can be used in all the same ways as coconut but it has a much better scent and can be used all over. I use it as a hair mask, on stretch marks, on dry skin and as lip balm.

4. TRESemme Heat Defence Styling Spray - £4.89
A cheap and reliable heat defence spray, it doesn't smell offensive doesn't make the hair heavy with product unlike some other ones I have tried.

5. Brazened Honey Fresh Face Mask - £5.95 or free when you return 5 black pots to Lush
Ethically approved and good for you too, this face mask is amazing for fighting under the skin acne. It has crushed up almonds shells which are brilliant for exfoliating the skin and other ingredients to help fight acne and give you a brighter complexion. I usually leave the mask on for as long as I can bare and then as I slowly apply water to my face I gently buff it into my skin to give my face a deep cleanse. I always notice a difference in my skin when I use this mask, my pores genuinely look smaller, red pimple look less angry and bumpy under the skin acne is reduced.

6. Bye Bye Blemish Drying Lotion - £9.75
When I'm having a really bad acne day I like to apply Bye Bye Blemish. My sister was the one who introduced me to this product. It is brilliant for those painful red spots that are yet to properly surface. It is a sulphur based topical treatment which reduces the size of the spot and also reduces redness. It is best to leave it on individual spots at night to reap all the benefits.

7. Superdrug Brightening Hot Cloth Cleanser - £5.99
I've written about this cleanser on my blog before, but to recap - it is gentle but offers a light exfoliating effect. It rivals some of the pricier hot cloth cleansers but with no frills.

8. Pantene Intensive Repair Shampoo and Conditioner - £7.38
I have quite dry hair and I also dye it, this is not the best combination for maintaining healthy looking hair but this shampoo/conditioner combo work together to protect my hair and prevent it from drying out. I think it makes my hair look incredibly shiny and in good condition.

9. Tesco Proflex Hairspray - £2.04
So this hairspray looks A LOT  like the product it is trying to imitate, but it is far superior. Although it is higher quality than other hairsprays on the market, I find that Elnett doesn't hold my hair as much as I'd like. This Tesco version however has excellent hold without making hair look greasy or crispy (leave that to KFC).

10. Tease Impulse Body Spray - £1
And finally, a body spray. As an adult it can feel a little juvenile to wear body spray because they are mostly targeted at teens. At school almost every girl carried around body spray and the Impulse cloud that used to form after we all got changed from PE was the stuff of an asthmatic's nightmare. I love body sprays to this day because they are easy to carry around and add a little burst of fragrance. I adore Tease by Impulse in particular because it has a very deep and sultry fragrance something which is hard to find in cheap body sprays.

Let me know what your top 10 products under £10 are in the comments!

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

StudentBeans: Swaps to Make Your Life Less Expensive

Today's post is from who have come up with 10 swaps you can do to make your life less expensive. I'd agree with it all apart from number 10 of course!

What swaps have you made?

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Life Update #1

I don't know if anyone had noticed but my post scheduling has been a little off this week, this is because a lot has changed in a small space of time. So here is a little insight into what has been going on recently:

1. I've moved house
So this week I've mainly spend packing and tying up loose ends before I went back to university for my final year. I've managed to get everything unpacked and we are all settled in nicely. We've come across a few problems with the place but hopefully the majority of them will be sorted by next week. It was hard saying goodbye to my family as I felt as though the summer went waaaaaaaaay too quickly for me to do everything that I wanted to do. I'm lucky though because I only live about an hour and a quarter drive from university so I'm not too far away from my family. I think I'd struggle if I lived any further away.

University Room

2. I've upgraded to Windows 8
It is frigging hard to use. I've been struggling to edit pictures, I usually use GIMP but when I tried to use it with Windows 8 for some reason I can't find it. I really need to find some tutorials for getting to grips with using it. I don't really understand why there are too interfaces, it's like it is trying to be Mac OS. I'm sure I will enjoy it once I know what I'm doing!

3. New blog layout
One of my best friends is a computer scientist so I've enlisted him to help me improve the layout of this blog as I was getting tired of things not looking right. I'm hoping to give it a more polished and professional look.

Instagram Blog Design

Normality will soon resume!