Samantha Dobbin

Style, Travel & Lifestyle


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Saturday, 16 September 2017

My Soap and Glory Picks & Review

When Boots has 3 for 2 on all beauty brands you're going to end up buying something! Well, I headed for Soap and Glory for a new brow pencil and ended up with two more products in my bag. I thought I would give you a quick review on the products, as this is my first time using Soap and Glory Beauty. 

We've all got that Christmas gift set but what is the beauty like? 


I must admit the only reason I bought this eyebrow crayon was due to Benefit running out of Goof-Proof in my colour...but I'm actually pretty glad they did because I wouldn't have found this little gem!

I prefer the consistency of a crayon brow product as I feel they are much longer lasting and you can get the shape you want so much easier than a powder. I bought this in the colour 'Brownie Points' and the colour match to my brows is spot on. The triangular shape allows for precision but also thickness so, you can fill your brows in a matter of seconds. It's a very soft crayon to work with.

The only thing I would say is the amount of crayon that you can't be more than 2cm! Which is such a shame as everything else is perfect. The setting gel is far better than the one you can purchase from Benefit's brow range, however, Goof Proof lasted me months before running out, so for that reason, I would suggest spending the extra ten pounds for Goof Proof as it lasts so much longer, but this is a great alternative if you can't get your hands on Benefits Goof Proof.

This product caught my eyes because I never wear primer but have recently started to see that my make up hasn't been lasting as long as I want throughout the working day. I also look more on the shiny side which I would like not to happen. So, this product seemed to answer all my make up worries. 

The brand claims that this lasts up to 12 hours and will keep your shine at bay. I can safely say after using for a week I can definitely see a difference. My face isn't as shiny and it's a nice base that evens out my skin whilst reducing my pores before applying my foundation. I had no need to top up opting to use the One Heck of a Blot Powder throughout the day instead (I talk about this in a minute). 

I place this primer on my t- zone and chin area as these are my problem areas, you only need a tiny amount making this product long lasting for the amount you pay. I'd definitely give it a go before spending money on a designer primer. 

I picked this up to use in conjunction with the primer, it's always nice to chuck a compact into your handbag just in case! The actual powder is completely translucent as it says on the tin, it doesn't leave you with a white tinge to your skin either. 

I use this after applying my foundation and then again after my concealer, and immediately my skin seemed to appear matt but not dehydrated, making it completely undetectable on the skin. I do have to top up midday but I do have oily skin so, that is only to be expected. I've been using this for just a week, and the powder doesn't look like it's been touched so, I have hope that this will last me a while before I need to buy a new one. 

There is also a large mirror in the compact making this the perfect product to carry around in your handbag. It does come with a sponge but, I find using a brush for my powder makes for an easier application especially as I find sponges can become quite dirty with foundation. 

The two One Heck of a Blot products that I purchased when used together are complete miracle workers. They are my two star purchases!

Friday, 15 September 2017

Pinstripes & Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

This time a week ago I was drinking sangria, looking out on stunning views and soaking up the sun in Barcelona, and now I'm under blankets with multiple layers on in a not-so-warm-England.

One of the places I explored whilst there was the infamous Sagrada Familia Temple, designed by the historic architect, Antoni Gaudí. Who has a number of stunning designs dotted all over the city! I would recommend paying this attraction a visit, although, we, unfortunately, didn't explore the interior, the exterior was just as breathtaking. From the intricate detailing to the sheer size of the building, it's an odd design- resembling a sort of sandcastle mixed with a futuristic style rocket ship.

Where one finds Barcelona's biggest tourist attraction, finds an onslaw of guided tours all walking into you as they view a piece of history through their camera lenses. A million ice cream shops (which I am not complaining about) and just a LOT of people. I would advise visiting early to avoid the queues and crowds, although the parks either side of the temple were peaceful- the perfect place to sit and enjoy an ice cream.

I wanted to keep my look simple and above all else comfortable for exploring the city, so I opted for this light, short pinstripe dress. The bows and slight open back kept it playful whilst the length and frill kept it moveable and airy so, there wasn't any chance of me becoming too hot in the spanish sun. Also, for under ten pound this Primark dress was a real winner in my eyes, I've since worn it with a leather jacket and black boots to the pub in the evening- such a transitional piece.

I kept my accessories to a minium, sticking to my favourite Chloe style bangle bag as my Barcelona bag of choice, due to it's size and accross body option it was perfect for wandering the streets without worry of pickpockets. As for my shoes...aren't they just amazingly mad, I couldn't help myself when I saw all the tassles. Great for jazzing up any outfit!

Outfit Linked Below |

Dress Primark
Sandals Topshop (in black)
Bag Mango (in black)

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Seeking City Comforts | The Ultimate Nude Dress

It's now September the seasons are changing; Fashion Week is upon us and I've received the all important September issue of Elle magazine through the post, but I'm not ready to leave behind summer, just yet. This outfit was inspired by Liv Blankson, I saw it on her Instagram and immediately ordered! Go check her out. 

Keep a cool head in the heat of the city with this simple and uber comfy outfit. This is the ultimate nude dress, it's a bit riskier than my default of black and baggy but I wanted to try something a bit different. The dress is figure hugging which accentuates the figure, something I don't usually do, however, it's a nice balance because the longer hem means it's not exposing too much skin. 

The outfit is made even comfier when paired with a baggy fitted denim jacket. The looser fit jacket with a fitted dress adds another dimension, and the uncomplicated colour palette and shape keeps the outfit understated, suited to exploring the city in comfort.

In typical British fashion, the weather has changed from summer to winter in a matter of days with no warning, but I can imagine this dress being a great transitional piece if layered under a loose fitting cream roll- neck and a pointy black boot for an uber stylish look. Hopefully, we have a few more sunnier days though! 

Outfit Linked Below |

Dress Missguided
Denim Jacket Bershka
Sandals New Look (similar)
Bag Zara

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Festival Inspired

It doesn't take much to connect short shorts paired with boots with festivals. Shorts are the ultimate essential when standing in a crowd of people in a field, cider in hand and music blaring.

Festivals are weird, aren't they? I went to my first festival a couple of weeks ago and I was not prepared for the sheer volume of people, not to mention the amount of times I heard 'Alan', 'Steve' shouted around the campsite - (if you don't know, watch this). It's 4 days of drinking endless cider (starting at 10am), becoming overprotective of home (your tent and camping area) and listening to great music with 49,999 other people. It was great- apart from the obvious no showering and the dreaded portaloos.

What I loved other than the music, was the outfits. Festival fashion is second to none- it's fabulous. The outfit above was one of the more toned down looks I saw but none the less it was perfect, comfy and transitioned from day to night with ease.

These tropical print shorts are such a nice shape, the slight outward frill along the bottom is a great way to make your thighs appear slimmer. The wider leg makes for a more movable and comfy wear- essential at a festival. Pair with studded boots to move away from beach holiday and more to festival, with the added bonus of being comfy!

Take inspiration from Tommy Hilfiger and customise your denim jacket with badges to add fun and personality to your outfit. Shop Wild Violet do some really cute pins and badges! If you would like 20% off use the code - SAMXVIOLET at the checkout.

Outfit Linked Below |

Top Hollister (put a white vest underneath)
Shorts Zara (similar)
Denim Jacket COW Nottingham
Boots Misspap
Bag Mulberry (similar)
Necklace Topshop (similar)
Sunglasses Quay Australia (similar)


Sunday, 20 August 2017

SUN- Day Best

SkinnyPop Popcorn have shared their exciting flavour combinations with me- that are set to tickle your taste buds. So, invite your mates over set the table and enjoy your last summer nights with cocktails and popcorn!

Cocktails at home normally take a back seat to Pimms or cider, due to their many ingredients and sometimes hard instructions. However, these aesthetically pleasing Blueberry Mojito's take less that 10 minutes to make- they look great, and taste even better.

Blueberry Mojito's are said to mix perfectly with the sea salt and pepper flavoured SkinnyPop Popcorn.

"The Rum cuts through the sat, quenching your thirst and allowing the pepper to dance on your tongue"

How to -

1. Crush a handful of blueberries into a jug, along with the mint.

2. Add a sprinkling of sugar and mix until dissolved.

3. The main attraction comes next - the Rum. Add as much as you feel like, depending on your alcohol preference.

4. Fill the jug with crushed ice.

5. Top up with soda water.

6. Lastly, if you want to make it Instagram worthy - Garnish with mint leaves, a scattering of blueberries and some pomegranate to make it pop.

7. If your drink is not sweet enough sprinkle a little more sugar and mix.

8. And, enjoy.

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