Minimalism: Literally All My Makeup

beautyOh hi, it’s just me again banging on about minimalism & this time minimalist makeup.

A while ago I wrote about 6 things I don’t need – and that list included duplicates of makeup. That point lends itself pretty well to a whole new blog post in which I share all of the makeup I do own. This is that blog post.

These are all Cruelty Free products at the time of writing (see also my post on NARS). Many are old faithful products I’ve bought repeatedly, but a few are newish to my collection and are replacing several pieces of old clutter.

Primer: e.l.f Illuminating Face Primer – I find this gives a really nice shine/glow under foundation or even just concealer, smells delicious & is really cost effective (£7-ish).

Foundation: NARS All Day Luminous Foundation in Montblanc (NARS were cruelty free at the time of purchase) – I’ve used NARS foundations forever and they’re perfect for me, so I’m distraught to discover they’ll start selling in China shortly. Not linking because obvs you shouldn’t buy it any more!

Blusher/Bronzer: e.l.f Bronze Beauty Palette – This palette has 4 shades that range from a cool matte brown to a rosy tan tint, which makes it perfect to double up as a blusher. I use the top left & bottom right pans mostly.

Eyebrows: Sleek Brow Intensity Sculptor (applied with an angled brush) – The actual applicator for this product is insane, but the product itself is great. I just dab a little on to an angled brush and apply that way as it goes on neater.

Mascara: e.l.f Waterproof Lengthening & Volumising Mascara – This is a recent buy and it’s great. It’s about as close to a cruelty free dupe of Benefit’s They’re Real I’ve ever found, so for £4-ish I’m very happy with it. The brush is a little awkward, but it’s worth it.

Lips: I’ve always been fairly low-key on the lip front, but even I managed to throw a few things out. I’ve left myself with Burts Bees classic beeswax lip balm and a Body Shop Coral Blush lipstick, plus the last bit of a Laura Mercier berry coloured lip tint from back in 2012 which has been & will be my Christmas Lip Colour of choice forever).

Tools: Nanshy Masterful Collection & B. Precision Beauty Blender – I’ve had these items for years (dude, I clean them, it’s OK) and they’re great. I apply the primer & foundation with the beauty blender and everything else with a brush.

And although I’m aware this is a fairly wordy post, that is it for my cosmetics collection. Literally, there is nothing else that I own. Although the list is pretty long, I’m hoping the images will translate how little I have. It’s SO freeing!




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Pitstop Athens: 8 Hours in Ancient Greece

View from the Parthenon at the acropolis

Athens! A place I’ve dreamed of visiting since I discovered its existence. I’m fairly ashamed it took me until 28 to visit, but this year I has the fortune of visiting Athens for  8 hours (the first 8 hours of many, I hope).

This trip was part of a cruise that also took us to Mykonos among other delights, and so my first trip to Athens was restricted to around 8 hours – and during it, I had to fit in visiting all kinds of ancient delights I’ve lusted after for years. 

Luckily Mr K had visited Athens before, and had a good idea of how vast it was. The clever bugger suggested getting a hop-on-hop-off tour with City Sightseeing Athens  for 16euro each (something I would never normally do) and it turned out to be one of the best things we could have done.

The Acropolis

Our bus took us from Piraeus port directly to The Acropolis, which took around 45 minutes and dropped us a short (uphill) slog to the most famous ancient ruin in Greece. It was early, so the queues were fairly small and the heat hadn’t become unbearable, so we spent a good 1.5 hours marvelling at the temples. Acropolis complete.

We hopped on the central Athens bus and spent a nice hour tootling round the other sites of interest – the Temple of Zeus (wow), Syntagma Square, Presidential Mansions, Panathenaic stadium, the Odeon and loads of other relics – sadly having very little spare time meant we only got to view these places briefly, but it was enough to whet my whistle & confirm to me that Athens is absolutely a place I’ll visit again (and again and again).

We hopped off the bus for gyros & gelato in a bustling little street with a view of the Acropolis, where the city vibe won me over and I decided with confidence that, actually, I prefer Athens to Rome (my previous all-time-favourite European city).

In order to get back to Piraeus we had to go via the Acropolis again, so we headed back up to the hill & enjoyed the mid afternoon sunshine & said goodbye to the oldest thing I’ve ever seen.

On the bus home we sat up top outside, and I almost managed to pluck a fresh orange off a tree. It was a good day.

Where would you spend 8 hours if you could?



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Minimalism: My 40-Item All-Season Wardrobe


Well here we are again for another installment of what I’m now going to call Minimalist Mondays, where I talk about and strive towards the simplest possible things.

This week I’m talking about  my wardrobe in its entirety and how over the past few weeks I’ve This is a work in progress and there’s definitely some things I’ll be swapping out in the near future. Literally right now I can’t walk past my wardrobe without having a peek inside in case there’s something I can get rid of. It’s kinda brutal, but I’m pretty much at a place where I’m happy & finding it freeing not to have too much stuff to filter through.

My main aim when I decided to start decluttering was to achieve a more cohesive collection of things I can just throw together with less thought & effort, but still look composed. Prior to creating this capsule wardrobe I was hoarding pretty things I’d bought that didn’t suit me, things that were shabby but I was emotionally attached to and things that no longer fit properly. In short, it was a rainbow of rags that took me 20+ minutes each day to decide from, and it didn’t make me happy. It just made for stressful mornings and wasted time.Colour-Palette

The first thing I did was to decide on a colour scheme – what shades do I most often reach for, do they suit me & can they work as part of a palette? I came up with the colours above that I seem to choose by default when it comes to shopping or dressing each day. Then I cleared out any items that weren’t part of that colour scheme (which actually wasn’t that much). Luckily for me, the colours I’m into right now are also colours that are pretty on-trend, so any things I felt were “missing” will be easy to pick up if I choose to.

My target was to get down to 40 items, not including workout gear, PJs, seasonal stuff like a scarf or sunglasses, or underwear, and I actually found this quite abundant.

Here’s what I ended up with (count ’em! There’s 40!)

2x pairs jeans (1 black, 1 blue)
1x pair trousers (black)
1x pair leggings
3x basic tshirts
3x basic long sleeve tshirts/fine knit sweaters
3x dresses/jumpsuits
1x biker jacket
1x winter coat
1x light jacket
3x jumpers
1x beach kimono
3x pairs shorts
3x camisoles (for layering)
1x swimsuit
2x “fancier” blouses
1x chelsea boots
1x ankle boots
1x trainers
2x ballet flats
1x gladiator sandals
1x flip-flops
2x heels
1x large handbag
1x medium bag

The mountains of things I have gotten rid of seem so trivial now as I haven’t missed any of the items I’ve parted with. Having this target made me consider items in my wardrobe that I really liked having, but that weren’t getting enough wear, and that helped me get rid of them instead of keeping them “just in case”.

I did have a few jittery mornings at first worrying I wouldn’t have “enough stuff” however after the first few days it became so much easier! Plus shopping is much simpler now too – I just don’t go unless I’m planning on replacing a specific item (enter my “one-in-one-out” policy), and when I do go, I can go directly to items within my colour scheme!





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