Wednesday, 30 July 2014

How To | Braidout [Video]

My big fluffy braidout tutorial is finally up on my YouTube channel. This method allows me to get a fairly even wave throughout regardless of the variety of textures I have in my hair. This is definitely a great transitioning style! I used my usual products to moisturise each section - Root2Tip Honey Rain Juice & Triple M Miracle Moisture Milk.

The Video: 

Have you tried a braidout?

Christine Stewart x

Friday, 25 July 2014

Summer Wardrobe | Strappy Sandals

Lately I've been loving wearing heeled strappy sandals. I don't wear heels often unless they're cleverly concealed platform boots as me and heels are usually a disaster. FYI I tend to look like Bambi trying to walk around in roller skates, but I'm hoping by wearing these more often I'll eventually look slightly more elegant in heels.

I got the two black pairs from and the pink pair from . I can't remember the exact prices but all of them were under £20, so a total bargain for me. I love how these shoes instantly transform my outfits, making it look like I've put in more effort. I'd love to add a white pair to the small collection above to finish off a few outfits which don't quite work with black or pink shoes.

What's in your summer wardrobe? 

Christine Stewart x

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Relaxed Hair Update | July 2014

I relaxed my hair after 5 long months, which seemed to be crawling by until it finally got to relaxer day on Monday. In typical fashion I didn't really feel like relaxing my hair by this point but I went ahead as I've had some time off work and I knew I wouldn't have this much time on my hands again for a while. I feel like the relaxer process went well but I've lost the ability to apply and smooth the relaxer as fast as I used to. I guess leaving so much time between relaxers has left me a little rusty.

I did the half half method as usual using ORS Olive Oil Lye Relaxer in normal (my relaxer process is detailed here). I relaxed the back half first and then repeated the same process separately on the top half. I spent about 4-5 minutes applying the relaxer and left it on for 9 minutes on the back sections and for 12 minutes on the front sections in total. For the first time I coated my hair from root to tip in oil (I usually just put it on the previously relaxed parts). I also put vaseline on my ends, the line of demarcation and my edges as well as basing my scalp with it.

I really didn't want overprocessing (if you didn't already guess) and overall the results were near perfect. I have actual curls throughout my hair which I'm really excited about. You can see how textured it looks post-wash in the picture above. I used my Root2Tip Protein Balance Masque to restore protein levels and my hair is so soft and bouncy.

My transition to texlaxed (info here) has taken me so long to get right and I feel like I can finally visualise how my hair will look when it's fully texlaxed. I still have a very long way to go though and I've avoided taking accurate length check pictures in months to not discourage myself from transitioning. It's quite daunting basically starting over after spending years growing out my hair and I've (reluctantly) given up on the idea of maintaining mid-back length hair during my transition. My hair is about mid-back length now but I plan to cut off about an inch or so soon.

I also plan to document my transition more in the following months as I have no idea how long it's taken me to get to this point or realistically how far I've got to go.

What have you been doing to your hair recently?

Christine Stewart x

Saturday, 19 July 2014

NOTD | Topshop Matte Nails in Easy Peasy

I picked up this Matte Nail Polish in Easy Peasy (£6) the other week from their Oxford Street store and I love how it looks on. I've never really been a fan of matte nails and it was hard to resist putting my usual shiny topcoat on these but I've really warmed to the flat finish.

If you've ever been to the Topshop store in Oxford Street Manchester, you'll know there's huge selection of nail colours. I'm not sure what made me pick up this dusty grey amongst the shelves of glittery, bright and metallic shades but I was just drawn to it. I've mentioned a few times on my blog that I prefer more muted tones, though I am trying to be a little more adventurous in general with my style. That doesn't mean I'll stop wearing what I love most though and this nail polish suits me to a tee.

What have you been wearing on your nails recently?

Christine Stewart x

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Skincare | Dermatosis Papulosa Nigra Removal

This post has been in the pipeline for some time but I've been reluctant to post this as the look of my skin has been a sensitive issue for me. During my teenage years I struggled with terrible bouts of acne and this really knocked my confidence as a person. My spots have calmed down dramatically in the last few years but it's taken me some time to be happy with the look of my skin. Apart from monthly breakouts my main skin concern is the Dermatosis Papulosa Nigra (DPN) on my face and neck. You may have noticed it in some of my pictures - DPN is the appearance of round brown, almost black, spots which look a little like moles or skin tags. As I've got older the number of them have increased and I eventually decided to get them removed.

Unfortunately there isn't a huge amount of information on DPN online and less so on where to get it removed in the UK, which is mostly what prompted me to post this. You can get it removed at  so I met with Vicki Smith, Aesthetic Practitioner, at their Manchester clinic in the beginning of March this year. She confirmed that I had DPN which could be removed with .

I had my treatment on Friday 21 March and opted for one 30 minute session (£130). You can vary the length of the treatment from 15 to 45 minutes. Most of my DPN was treated apart from the smaller ones above my eyes and around my temples. My cheeks were numbed with anaesthetic and here there was no pain but other parts of my face felt uncomfortable during the process, especially my jaw line and under eye area.

Straight after the treatment my face was very red, scabby and puffy. I looked horrible. After the treatment it was suggested to avoid makeup and stay out of the sun. It took about 3 days for the redness to subside and the small scabs gradually fell off over the next week. I was left with no scarring, and most of my DPN had been removed with the exception of the bigger ones which reduced in size and faded in colour.

It's been several months since I had the treatment and overall it worked really well. Initially I thought I wouldn't get this treatment done again because I rarely have a few days of down time to allow my skin to heal. However, seeing how much clearer my skin looks has had me toying with the idea of going back to Absolute Aesthetics to remove the remaining DPN. It wasn't until I compiled all the pictures together that I realised how successful the treatment was! I'm feeling a lot more positive about my skin finally and I'm at least wearing less makeup, though I haven't abandoned it completely...yet.

Have you had any skin treatments before? 

Christine Stewart x

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Summer Wardrobe | Round Sunglasses

I often take a 'less is more' approach to styling, especially with accessories, and this has led me to use the same oversized aviators every summer for the past couple of years. In general I'm trying to be slightly more daring with my style, which is pretty simplistic, but I've started small by changing up my accessories.

One of my friends from work has the coolest round sunglasses which he got from Urban Outfitters last year and ever since I spied them on him I've had a little obsession with finding the perfect pair for me. There's so many gorgeous retro-inspired shades on the high-street at the moment I've found it hard to resist purchasing a few. These 3 here are only a small selection of the round sunnies I've been hoarding this summer.

Primark | Topshop | ASOS (from top to bottom)

It's hard for me to blog about my personal style and not include an item from Primark. Everything in Primark is super cheap and, it's a bad habit but, this leads me to buy a lot. Their sunglasses range from £1-£3 and these (£3) are just one of many I've got from Primark this year. This is the only pair I have in tortoise shell and I love the oversized look. I'm wearing this Primark pair in my last OOTD.

The (£12) are currently my favourite sunnies and surprisingly I can pair them easily with a lot of my outfits. To me they're 'teashades' or 'John Lennon glasses' but with a more modern finish. I've often avoided these types of round glasses in the past as I thought they'd look awkward on my face, but these are the perfect size.

The  (£15) are also a flattering size but the wire-look frame give these a more 60s-inspired finish than the Topshop sunnies. These shades work perfectly with summer festival staples - floaty dresses (like this one), patterned pieces, loose tees and clothes with fringe detailing.

It's ironic that I post this as it's been pouring with rain in Manchester today but I have been relying on my sunnies quite a lot lately!

What's in your summer wardrobe?

Christine Stewart x

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Review | Clinique Chubby Stick Whoppin' Watermelon

It's no secret that I'm a fan of magazine freebies and I was excited to find a Clinique Chubby Stick with this months Glamour magazine (UK). The shade I got was Whoppin' Watermelon which is a beautiful rosy pink. I've been dying to try the Clinique Chubby Sticks but I haven't until now as the cost has always put me off.

Various makeup brands now have products similar to the Chubby Stick. I've tried the Bourjois Paris Color Boost Lip Crayon and the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain. Both of these retail at half the cost of the Clinique Chubby Stick which is £17. I rarely pay more than £10 for individual makeup products (unless it's foundation, concealer or a makeup palette) so £17 for a lip balm is a high price for me.

The colour of the product is gorgeous and there's currently 18 different shades of the original Chubby Stick in total. My natural lip line is dark brown, so I have to apply a few layers to get a decent colour pay-off. Even though this is a balm, I'd prefer a richer colour. Clinique has a range of Chubby Stick Intense balms which deposit more colour and are probably be more suited to me.

The product is easy to apply and very moisturising. It lasts fairly well on my lips but no more than the other balms I have in my makeup stash. I have found the Bourjois Crayon I own to last slightly longer than this product too. I love the crayon style packaging with twist bottom. This sample product is slightly different to the product on sale from Clinique as the cap on this is made of transparent plastic instead of silver. My guess is that this freebie is smaller too but there's no measurements listed on the sample to confirm this.

Overall I think it's a really pretty colour and I do like the product, I just don't think I could ever part with £17 for it.

Have you tried Clinique Chubby Sticks or similar lip crayons?

Christine Stewart x