Friday, 12 January 2018

Why Mainstream Media Should Stop Hating on Zoella


For this post I thought I'd talk a little bit about why I think mainstream media should stop scrutinising and hating on Zoella.

Taken from Zoe's Instagram: @Zoella

In some ways, I think that a lot of mainstream media struggle to understand both the concept of YouTube and 'YouTubers' but also the success they bring. Many are accused of being not very successful or have people questioning their success when in actual fact, this new wave of culture should be celebrated. Media personalities and journalists need to face facts in my opinion, that YouTube is becoming a huge phenomenon and understand that it's a huge new factor of media. For a lot of the younger generation, this is what they are interested in and how they spend their spare time.

For me personally, Zoella has impacted on my life in many ways. I first began watching her videos in late 2012, after discovering her 'Dealing With Anxiety and Panic Attacks' video which at the time was very relevant to me and my life. I was at a stage where I was a bit confused and in denial about what was happening to me, but watching Zoe's video and her experiences made me realise they were similar in some cases to mine. I therefore had a lot of respect for her and began watching more of her videos and saw her grow into one of the UK's biggest vloggers. When I began watching her, the YouTube culture was still growing and the mainstream media hadn't quite got as involved with it as they have today. The community was a lot smaller and arguably 'tight-knit'.

Due to this, I do in some ways feel protective of her as YouTube has changed and grown so much since she first began posting videos and nobody really knew it would grow to what it is now and I can't imagine how that must be especially from an anxiety sufferer's point of view. She has had to adapt to so much change so quickly. And there's also obviously been setbacks and media making things harder for her, for example when her address became published online by a newspaper and she had people coming to her house. It's almost like respect is lost if you're a YouTuber just because some parts of your life is online, which I personally don't think is fair to any YouTuber, but in Zoe's case it must be hugely difficult to balance your anxiety out alongside that.

I conducted a survey to find out more opinions to see if I was the only person who thought this way and to discover what others think of Zoella.

Following the results from the survey, 30% of people who saw themselves as Zoella fans felt that she had been treated too harshly by the media, while another 30% also added that this was sometimes the case.
70% of people felt like Zoe is scrutinised by mainstream media because she is a successful and well established YouTuber and interestingly enough, 90% of people believe that mainstream media doesn't recognise that Zoe's target audience isn't just pre-teens.
Another question I felt to be very interested by the answers was 50% considered Zoella to be good role model, while 50% were not sure.

I have to say I agree that because Zoe has become successful from YouTube, that mainstream media scrutinise her because she is successful and established and I'd also add that they maybe use her as an example when talking about YouTubers when she does not reflect the entire community. I would also say that I do believe she is a good role model, obviously nobody is perfect and we all make mistakes and we all have past things we aren't happy with, but there's much worse influences that people could be looking up to than her, especially on the YouTube spectrum.

I found this article in the Independent, and it discusses why you should stop hating on Zoella purely because you don't understand her success.
I do think this happens to be the case as a lot of the older generation are out of touch with modern forms of media and they can sometimes be close-minded on learning and understanding of how YouTubers make their success and why they are so popular.

I hope this post has maybe made you think twice about both mainstream media and Zoe and other YouTubers of course too. I'd also like to thank everybody who took part in my survey for this post!
It is very appreciated!

Claire xxx

Monday, 8 January 2018

Never Give Up Quotes Book (And Why Quotes Books Can Help)


I hope you're all well.

For the past few years, whilst life has gotten a little bit more hectic and conflicting, I've found a lot of comfort and hope with quotes. They can be very uplifting and relatable to me sometimes and I feel like they can really boost you.

One of my close friends kindly gifted me a book titled 'Never Give Up' which is basically a small book with a lot of different quotes that are intended to motivate and boost hope and improve wellbeing. As I mentioned, being someone who has taken a lot of comfort in quotes, I really like to find new ones and try and put them into practice in areas of my life when they are needed.

That's why I find this book very interesting and useful because it brings you a new set of quotes and new words to stand by.

I feel like if there's anyone out there who does struggle with life and trouble keeping faith, maybe books like this could provide some help? Obviously they depend on the person, but I feel like light reading like this can definitely bring in some light and hope when it seems like there isn't.

Please have a look on Amazon to see what you can find as there are all kinds of different books catered with quotes.

Claire xxx

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

OOTD: Christmas Day


I hope you all had an amazing Christmas and had lots of fun with your loved ones!  I thought I'd do a little OOTD, as I've done some previously on this blog. Here's what I wore on Christmas Day.

Top: TK Maxx
Skirt: Boohoo
Tights: New Look
Necklace: Anna Saccone for Stilnest

Thank you for reading!!

Claire xxx

Thursday, 14 December 2017

My Favourite Strictly Pros


So Strictly Come Dancing is one of the most popular shows from the BBC and as I've been a fan since the very first series, I've seen a number of changes to the pros and the growth of the show in general. Even though this is a lifestyle/beauty blog I thought I'd share with you some of my favourite professional dancers from the programme!

Janette Manrara
Janette is one of my favourite Strictly pros because I love how talented she is at her latin dances. She comes across as a very warm and cheerful person and I love her attitude to life. She's very funny and doesn't take herself too seriously.

Oti Mabuse
In my opinion, Oti is one of the best choreographers the show has to offer. She delivers some absolutely incredible routines for her celebrity partner and knows their strengths. She's very funny and is an asset to the show in my opinion.

Ola Jordan
Ola is probably one of the most famous female pros and one of the most memorable. She's very daring and produced some incredible routines during her time on the show.

Karen Clifton
Karen Clifton is one of my favourite female pros because she always manages to make fun routines no matter who her partner is. She knows exactly how to show off her partner no matter what their skill of dancing might be.

Katya Jones
Katya is another professional who has shone on both of her series' so far. She has the ability to choreograph some fantastic routines to even the most difficult of Strictly's music choices. She has a fun personality and I hope she stays!

Lilia Kopylova
During my earlier years of watching Strictly, I loved watching Lilia. Even though she isn't on the show anymore, she did an amazing job while she was competing as a professional.

Pasha Kovlev
Pasha is one of my favourite male professionals on the show as he has such a great attitude towards the show and is always really positive about his partners, as well as being funny and creating some great routines.

Aljaz Skorjanec
Aljaz is a professional who's always got a smile on his face and that makes him very warm to watch. He's excellent in my opinion at having a balance of the required dance and the dance matching the song.

Kevin Clifton
Kevin Clifton is one of the most successful Strictly professionals of all time having been in the final for 4 years running. He's someone who always manages to pull out a clever routine, you just know he will have nailed it.

Anton Du Beke
You can't be a fan of Strictly and not have a soft spot for Anton Du Beke. A very comedic asset to the show, the show simply wouldn't be the same without him.

Giovanni Pernice
Giovanni is an incredible dancer and he has a huge personality too, he's a very funny character and he's proved that he can work well with whoever he's given.

Darren Bennett
Likewise to his wife Lilia, Darren did an amazing job on Strictly while he was competing and came across as very likeable and memorable during the years before Strictly become what it is today.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post and that you enjoy the rest of Strictly!

Claire xxx

Monday, 11 December 2017

Chester Weekend Trip (Meeting The SacconeJolys)


Some of you may or may not know, but a couple of months ago I took a weekend trip to Chester, where I stayed with my best friend who is down there for university.
This trip has been long-awaited, as I've always wanted to go down but somehow I suppose my anxiety always got in the way and stopped me. It was always something which got to me.

This time however, was the time to go and visit her and also another special reason too.
We had tickets to meet The SacconeJolys on their book tour! Me and my best friend are both huge fans of The SacconeJolys and I've been watching them for a while now and I just find their videos so entertaining and really relaxing, they have gotten me through some tough times.

I travelled down on the train on Saturday afternoon (nearly missing it because my watch decided to stop and my housemate literally saved my skin by ringing a taxi for me last minute) and arrived around evening time, just in time for a Dominos!

I really enjoyed myself, we went for a night out on the Saturday night which was a lot of fun and one of my favourite nights out I've been on (and thankfully BeyoncĂ© played) and then the next day, being a bit tired, we slept in, caught up on Strictly and watched Moana. She also made me a very tasty roast dinner which was soo good!

Monday was the day I went home but it was also the day we met The SacconeJolys. It was held in WH Smith, in the centre of the city which was great for me as it meant I got to see a bit more of Chester in the day this time! I should have taken more photos as it was my first time in Chester, but we were making sure we got there on time. At the signing, there was the opportunity to get your face painted with one of the dogs, or balloon animals. It was a very chilled event overall. As for Anna and Jonathan themselves, they were absolutely lovely and Jonathan's humour came out even in the short time we saw them. Anna looked so pretty and it was so weird to think that we were standing there beside them after having watched them for so long.

I really enjoyed my weekend down in Chester and I especially felt proud of myself because I know that I managed to throw myself into it and that a year or two ago I wouldn't have been able to do it. Looking back, I still can't believe I did it but I can't express how happy I am that I did. Somehow I managed to control my anxiety for the most and when I look back at the photos and videos, I smile a lot and am grateful for the amazing memories.

I also put together a short vlog featuring a couple of the clips and photos I took over the weekend (not all of them). Enjoy!

Claire xxx

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Christmas Gift Ideas: Best Friend

Hey everyone!

It's the most wonderful time of the year! And if you still haven't got a plan of what to get your best female friend, take a little look at my gift ideas below:

Unicorn Mug - £10.00
(You could even get some chocolates or hot chocolate and marshmallows to put inside with the mug for an extra cute gift!
Strawberry Treats Set - £6.00 The Body ShopPerfect for someone who deserves a relaxing and indulging bath, you could team this up with some face masks or a cute shower cap to complete the gift.
Flamingo Wall Print - £3.15 EtsyThis wall print is so cute and would make a great gift for a friend who's into interior and decorating. If you wanted to follow up with something to go with it, you could always buy a reed diffusor or candle.

Cactus Hoodie - £5.69 your friend who loves to be cosy and snug, an oversized hoodie would be a very appreciated gift idea. This cactus one is so cute and quirky, as it's from Amazon so you won't see it worn everywhere. You could even pair it with some cosy socks from Primark to make sure the person is extra snug!

Echo Falls Gift Set - £5 TescoWho doesn't love a little beverage around the festive season, (providing you are of legal age)? This Echo Falls gift set is so cute because not only do you receive a small bottle of wine, you get some Lindor chocolate and a sweet little glass to go with it! Pair up with a DVD your friend may like or a new lipstick and you're sorted.

Sleek Solstice Highlighter Palette - £9.99 Superdrug
This highlight palette has caught my eye for a while but it would make a gorgeous gift for a makeup loving best friend, as it's budget friendly and Sleek are a brand which do amazing quality products for their price range. A nail polish or cute brush set would be the perfect partner for this gift idea!
Personalised Wall Calendar - £14.99 Boots
Taken loads of selfies with a friend over the past year? A personalised calendar would make a very thoughtful gift and treasured because it's personalised. You could maybe pair a small stationary set to go with it so they can mark on their important dates and let's face it  - who doesn't love some new stationary?

Gold Coloured Shoulder Bag - £8.99 H&M
There's no such thing as having too many handbags, and this one would make a great night out bag as it's small and the gold colour is pretty to stand out in the light. I think it would make a great Christmas present with maybe some gel heels if you're planning on giving it to a mate who's always out in heels! Their feet will be very grateful!
So there's my gift ideas guide for your female best friend, I tried to incooperate some ideas. Ultimately, the decision is yours as to what your best friend likes and her personality, but I hope my ideas have maybe inspired you.

Claire xxx

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Makeup Revolution Redemption Iconic 2 Palete Review


Today I'm talking about the Makeup Revolution Redemption Iconic 2 Palette. I recently got gifted this palette from one of my best friends and it had been a palette which I'd been considering buying. Mainly because it displays a gorgeous number of shades. There's a nice collection of both matte and shimmery shades which compliment one another enormously. All of them range through light browns/cream to shimmery browns to the dark matte shade at the end.

I tested out this palette at the weekend and let's just say I was very impressed!
The pigmentation is extremely outstanding and very easy to blend.
It's a palette which can take you from your neutral and subtle day makeup to your seductingly sexy shimmery smoky makeup with just one brush sweep.

It's actually my first product from Makeup Revolution but I've got to say I'm really happy with the quality of the palette and the number of potential looks you can create with it. I'm hugely impressed and really recommend it! Makeup Revolution is definitely a drugstore brand I've wrongly overlooked and never quite noticed before but let's be honest that will not be happening anymore!

Have any of you used any Makeup Revolution products? What's your favourite?

Claire xxx