Thursday, 31 October 2013

Q&A With Author Paige Toon

For those of you don't know I love to read. I've been a big fan of the Chick Lit genre since I was around 13. I can read so many different books and authors but one that I always come back to is Paige Toon. I have read all 9 of Paige's books at least once - my favourite, Johnny Be Good has been read at least 5 times!




I saw on Twitter about a week ago that Paige was looking for bloggers to complete a Q&A with before the release of her new ebook Johnny's Girl (7th November) and I jumped at the chance. I would love to write a book in the future, so I took this opportunity to get some tips from Paige herself!





1. Hello Paige, first of all welcome to Studentstylexo! Where did you get the inspiration to begin writing Chick Lit books from?
I've always read chick-lit books and I love watching romantic films - I think you should write what you love, not what you think you should. If you're heart's not in it, readers will see through you.

2. Johnny’s Girl is a kind of follow up to Johnny Be Good and Baby Be Mine, do you think people’s opinions of Johnny might change in this book?
I think people's opinions of Johnny changed in Baby Be Mine - he was such a bad boy in Johnny Be Good and it actually surprised me how many of my readers wanted him and Meg to get together. He was so awful to her! But he comes good in Baby Be Mine, and so Johnny's Girl continues from there. Meg and Johnny are now married with two children. It was lovely writing about them being in love, even if it does all go a bit pear-shaped at one point!

3. How have you adapted your writing style to suit the Young Adults genre?
I haven't! The Accidental Life of Jessie Jefferson (out 30 Jan) is the story of Johnny's secret 15-year-old daughter Jessie. Johnny's Girl (the ebook short story out 7 Nov) sets this story up but is told from Meg's point of view when she finds out about Jessie. The only difference for me with The Accidental Life... is that Jessie is a younger protagonist, but she's also my naughtiest heroine to date. She was so much fun to write about. I did have to tone down her smoking as the book went on, but really, that was it!

4. Who is your favourite character from all the books you have written?
My answer to this question changes all the time - and that just goes to show how hard I find this one! I love all of my heroines. I usually love the character I'm currently writing (Bronte from next year's Thirteen Weddings) - or the character from the last book of mine I've read (Lily from Pictures of Lily). I really loved writing about Jessie, actually!

5. Which character can you relate to the most?
Probably Lucy from Lucy in the Sky, but mainly because she was torn between two countries - England and Australia - and I feel like that too.

6. Your characters often interlink within your books, do you think it’s important to read them in the order you wrote them in?
I think it's more enjoyable for the reader if you do. It's like we're all in a little club and we recognise the people who pop up. However, it's by no means essential. Each book - with the exception of Baby Be Mine which is a sequel to Johnny Be Good - is a standalone story.

7. What advice would you give to young people who want to start writing?
Do just that: start writing! I wrote a blog about how to write a book!

8. Who is your favourite author?
I love Marian Keyes, but the books I've recently enjoyed most are The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. I love YA sci fi!



I've pre-ordered my copy already! Thanks for the chat Paige, I can't wait to see what you have in store for us next!

Who are you favourite authors? 
xo


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Monday, 28 October 2013

October Beauty Haul

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I'm thinking of saving my haul posts until the end of the month, so I can show you a big collection rather than a few little ones. However, seeing all the things I've bought this month makes me feel a little sick. I have bought these throughout the month so not in all one shopping trip! I hope you enjoy seeing what i've been buying.


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Real Techniques Blush, Stippling & Powder Brush - Asda

If you follow me on Twitter (@studentstylexo) then you will have seen my tweets about my local Asda selling Real Techniques brushes. I saw them whilst browsing for some skin care bits and wandered over to the shelf, then I saw how cheap they were! The Blusher brush was £5 and the Stippling & Powder brushes were £6, normal price as well!  I absolutely love Real Techniques brushes and i'm hoping to do a post featuring my favourites soon.

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Tea Tree Toner Water & Oatfix Face Mask - Lush
I asked on Twitter at the end of last month what your favourite recommendations were as I didn't own any Lush products (don't judge). So many of you said the Tea Tree Water, I knew I had to buy it. I also knew I wanted a face mask so I did my research and found that Oatfix was the best for dry skin. Overall, i'm really happy with these two and i'll be doing a post on them soon.


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Wedge Eyeshadow and Rebel Lipstick - MAC

So I haven't bought anything from Mac for ages but when I saw that Debenhams had a 10% off all beauty items sale I decided to pick up Mac Rebel, i've wanted it for so long that I jumped at the chance of a lipstick for £13. It's the perfect colour for Autumn Winter and I think it looks gorgeous both during the day and at night. I also picked up the eyeshadow shade Wedge for my eyebrows. You can see my post about how I fill in my eyebrows here.

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Build Your Own Palette, Flawless Primer & Nail Varnish shades Moody Mink & Purple Noir- MUA

Can you believe it, this was my first ever time ordering from the Mua website. As they had a sale on I decided to pick up two palettes, one eyeshadow and one blusher shade. These were so cheap but such good quality. I also ordered their flawless primer which is amazing, i've reviewed it here. I also picked up these two nail varnishes as I wanted some more Autumn Winter appropriate colours.


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Nail Lacquer - LA Colours, Bronzer - Bourjois, Eyelash Curlers - Technic

These are just so random bits and pieces I picked up over the month. The Bourjois bronzer I ordered from Asos for around £4, this is usually £8ish in Boots so I definitely got a bargain there. I also picked up two LA Colours nail varnishes from Boyes for £1 each, I love the colour of these however the lasting power isn't brilliant. Finally, I picked up some cheap eyelash curlers as mine were getting really grubby. These do a nice job of curling the lashes and keeping the curl.

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On The Spot Foundation, Phwoar Paint Concealer & Poreless Primer - Seventeen, Illuminating Touch Concealer - Collection, Eyeliner Brush - No7

Again, another splurge in Boots. Although this was a bargain shop. The Seventeen products were all 3 for £10 meaning I saved around £7. I love Seventeen at the moment, I think they are really bringing out some fantastic products. I've read some really good reviews on these and can't wait to try them out properly. The Collection concealer is what I use for the brow bone, which i've already done a post on and the brush is what I use to blend that.

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No7 Lipstick Gift Set

So during my trip to Boots, my sister purchased two No7 products and received a lip care gift set. As she already had one she gave me it. You get a lipstick, lip gloss and lip brush all for free! The colours are so wearable and long lasting. I don't own a lip brush either so i'm excited to use this.

What have you been buying this month?
xo




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Saturday, 26 October 2013

New Video - Specspost Sunglasses

If you're a reader of my blog then you may have seen my review I did of some Specspost glasses recently. The lovely people at Specspost enjoyed my review so much that they sent me some sunglasses to review. We decided to do a Youtube video where I could show you how I'd style three different pairs. If you're interested in the makeup I wore and how I styled them you can check out the video here.



I really enjoyed working with Specspost and would definitely recommend you buy your next pair of glasses from there as they are so, so cheap! If you like the video, i'd really appreciate it if you could let me know which pair you think I suit the most.

Do you wear glasses? Where do you normally buy yours from?
xo

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Thursday, 24 October 2013

The Sunshine Award


A different kind of post today but i've been nominated for a Sunshine award by the lovely
 Charlotte at Surely Char and I thought it's a nice way for you to get to know me and for me to tell you some interesting facts about myself. 

So these are the rules:



  • Acknowledge the person whom nominated you
  • Write 11 facts about yourself
  • Answer the 11 questions that the blogger whom nominated you has set
  • Nominate 11 bloggers you think deserve this award
  • Set 11 questions for the bloggers you have nominated to answer
  • Let all 11 bloggers know you have nominated them!
However I'm not going to nominate 11 bloggers but I nominate anyone who would like to do it :)!


My facts...

  1. I am currently in my third year of university studying Primary Teaching.
  2. I absolutely hate being on my own, I never go anywhere alone.
  3. I don't drink tea or coffee or any kind of hot drink apart from the occasional hot chocolate.
  4. I've worn glasses since is was in year 8, so about 7 years.
  5. I met my boyfriend in the first week of college and we've been together ever since.
  6. I love going to the cinema and watching films at home.
  7. I have only been really into makeup for the last year. 
  8. I love reading and hate that I never seem to have enough time for it.
  9. Since blogging i've turned into a complete Twitter addict (@studentstylexo).
  10. I paint my nails nearly on a daily basis.
  11. I watch Youtube videos more than I watch the television.


The Questions set by Charlotte...
  1. What is your favourite brand of nail polish? I love Essie but they are quite expensive for me so I would have to say Barry M or Mua for their cheapness.
  2. What is your most used beauty product this month? This would have to be either my new primer or Mac's studio fix fluid foundation.
  3. What is your favourite colour lipstick? Anything bright and i'll want it. I love bright reds in the winter, corals in the summer and pinks any other time!
  4. What is your worst beauty habit? (e.g. not taking make up off) Definitely not cleaning my makeup brushes as often as I should. I'm also so bad at taking off chipped nail varnish.
  5. Do you subscribe to beauty boxes? Nope, I was tempted to subscribe to Glossybox but i've not been too impressed with what i've seen lately. But Love Me Beauty looks pretty good recently. 
  6. What is the most you've ever spent on 1 item of make up? Erm, it would have to be my MAC foundation probably. I like to buy lots of cheap things and save for one expensive thing at the moment but when I get a job i'm sure that will change.
  7. How old were you when you started blogging? I started blogging a year ago so I will have been 19.
  8. What is your favourite budget beauty buy? I really love the MUA Undress Me Too palette, it's so wearable.
  9. Would you rather have a starter or a dessert? Definitely a dessert, my sweet tooth is crazy!
  10. What is your favourite book? I don't think I could pick a favourite book but my favourite author is Paige Toon. I love all her books :) especially Johnny Be Good.
  11. Do you like to shop online? I love shopping online, although my bank account doesn't haha! I always find myself shopping online in bed and that's dangerous.
My Questions To You...

  1. If you could meet anyone famous who would it be?
  2. Which of the social networking sites do you prefer? (instagram, twitter, etc)
  3. What or who was your biggest influence to start blogging?
  4. What is one product you regret buying?
  5. How would you describe your self in three words?
  6. Books or magazines?
  7. When did you first wear makeup?
  8. Where do you see yourself in ten years time?
  9. What is your favourite brand of chocolate?
  10. If you could either go back 5 years or skip ahead 5 years which would you do?
  11. Do you collect anything? If not, what would you want to collect?
There are my questions, let me know if you do this in the comments, I'd love to read them!
xo


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Tuesday, 22 October 2013

£3 Flawless Primer - Review!


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I love MUA and pretty much all the products that I've bought, I've absolutely loved but surprisingly I'd never ordered from their website before. So after seeing a blog review about their new 'create your own palette' I headed straight over there and made myself a little basket. As well as the one two palettes I ordered I also bought the Fashion Secrets Flawless Primer for the bargain price of £3.

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I wasn't expecting much as obviously it was only £3 but I needed a new one and thought why not. And boy am I glad I did, this little thing is blooming amazing. This keeps my makeup on ALL day! It creates a lovely, flawless base as the name suggests and helps your makeup stay put for so long. I love the feel of this, it's kind of silky and applies so easily to the face creating an even, lightweight layer to your skin perfect for adding foundation over the top.

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As you can see the primer is clear, it's a kind of gel like consistency which isn't runny but really easy to apply. A little goes a long way with this primer, a small blob is enough to cover the whole face. It doesn't disguise redness or blemish pores and I definitely wouldn't wear it alone without foundation but if you're looking for something that will help keep your makeup in place then this is it!

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Overall, I would definitely recommend this primer to anyone. It doesn't dry my skin out even though I have such dry skin at the moment and it didn't make me oily either. The finish isn't matte or dewy, it's just a perfect, natural primer that keeps your makeup in place all day.

Have you tried this primer before? What is your all time favourite primer?
xo

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Thursday, 17 October 2013

88 Shade Eyeshadow Palette For Under £5


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Eyeshadows have become my new 'thing'. I think every time i've been beauty shopping in the last month I have bought at least one shade or palette. So whilst scrolling through Ebay one night (I always shop online at night for some reason) I saw this palette containing 88 eyeshadows for just £4.99! I did worry about the pigmentation and they staying power but for £4.99 I couldn't leave it behind. This came within about three days of ordering and I love it.


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The majority of the colours are shimmers but I tend to wear them more than mattes anyway. And the colours range from mainly neutrals to some darker purple tones and blacky grey colours. The pigmentation is incredible, you hardly need any product to cover your lids and the staying power is pretty good too, I didn't find that the colours creased any more than your average eyeshadows. 

swatches

I love the neutral peach shades as a base, they are perfect for covering the lid. The brown shades are lovely lid colours and I'm loving wearing the purpley colours in the crease and outer corners, especially during the Autumn. The top left hand side has the most loveliest highlight colours too, perfect for under the brow bone or the inner corners.

Have you tried this palette before? Do you wear matte or shimmer eyeshadows more?
xo
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Tuesday, 15 October 2013

High End Wish List


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01) Guerlain cils d'Enfer Mascara
So I've never actually tried this mascara so it's a bit of a cheat but several people have recommended it to me so now I feel like I need it. It is £22 but sometimes I feel like it's worth paying a little bit more for a product especially if it's as good as everyone says it is.

02) Real techniques Powder Brush
I have the Real Techniques core collection and their starter kit for eyes and I really love them both. The brushes are perfect for creating flawless looks so I want to expand my collection and try some new ones. I currently use my buffing brush to powder my face so I feel like the powder brush is definitely more of a need than want!

03) Nars Sheer Glow
So another product that has come with recommendations. I've heard so many people talking about this and loving it. I think the look it leaves is so nice. I'm really enjoying using my Mac Studio Fix Fluid but I would like to try this too and maybe alternate between the two for days when I need more or less coverage.

04) Dior Amber Glow Highlighter
Every time I see this my heart does a little flutter. This has to be the nicest highlighter I've seen. The colours are all beautiful and from the swatches I've seen they looks gorgeous together. I don't own any Dior products so this would definitely be a lovely first product to own.

05) Benefit Porefessional
If you've read my blog for a while you will know that i'm on a quest to find me the perfect primer. I want something that will make my makeup stay on and create a smooth base for my foundation. I've recently noticed that my pores are really visible so from the reviews i've read I think 'Porefessional' may work for me and create that desired base and cover my pores.

06) Mac Cranberry Eyeshadow
Another blogger who wants Mac Cranberry, you've seen it all before but I just can't help it. The colour is beautiful and so perfect for this time of year. I love that it can be worn both during the day and at night and Mac eyeshadows are so good. They last all day and they're super blendable!

07) Real Techniques Blush Brush
Another Real Techniques brush :)! I currently use the contour brush for my blusher but I think I want to start using that brush for it's actual job so a blush brush is in order. I love the shape of this as it's easy to sweep on to the apples of your cheeks. Basically, I just don't have a bad word to say about Real Technique Brushes.

What are you lusting after? Do you own any of these?
xo

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Sunday, 13 October 2013

My Eyebrow Routine


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Over the past few months i've developed an unhealthy obsession with eyebrows. They are the first thing I notice about people and I can't help but stare at them. That being said I have a love hate relationship with my own brows. They tend to get very bushy at the front very quickly so defining them is a huge must me for.

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I used to fill my eyebrows in with a Rimmel eyebrow pencil or the matte brown shade in the MUA Undress Me Too palette but I decided to change up my eyebrow routine and visited MAC with a quest to find the perfect eyebrow shade. The MAC girl matched me to the shade Wedge which is a gorgeous brown colour. I would never have picked this for myself as it looks so much lighter than my brows but it is the nicest match. I also use an angled brush that I got on Ebay I think to fill them in.

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Whilst the lovely Mac girl was filling in my brows, she gave me probably my most favourite beauty tip, ever! As I have dark hair, when my brows grow they are obvious and stand out a mile so the girl told me to apply a concealer with a brush all along the edge of the brow to make them look more defined and neat. Firstly, she filled them in and they looked nice, then she added the concealer and oh my goodness the difference was incredible. It honestly looked like I had had them threaded, waxed, tinted, etc they were perfect. So I instantly ran to Boots and bought Collection Illuminating Concealer and the No7 Precise Eyeliner brush and haven't gone a day without using them.

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(sorry for the rubbish picture, i will take a better one soon!)

This is the finished look using Mac Wedge to fill the brows in and then Collection Illuminating Touch Concealer to outline and define the brows. I think this looks so polished and is the perfect technique for those who have 'over-plucked' and have to fill their brows in to create an arched shape.

How do you fill your brows in? Do you use concealer to define?
xo

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Friday, 11 October 2013

Avon Mega Effects Mascara: Review



Anyone who knows me will tell you how much I love mascaras. I have pretty long lashes but I love to make them thicker and add volume so i'm always trying different ones to find my 'holy grail' mascara. When I saw Avon were bringing out a new revolution mascara I knew it had to be mine. This was £10 but I got a tonne of freebies with it too (you can see my video of it here).


Avon's Mega Effect Mascara comes in a 9ml, red and black bullet. I like the packaging, I think it makes the mascara look different and it also stands out in your makeup bag. You do get instructions of how to use this in the box as it does look quite confusing. This is in the shade 'blackest black' and it's perfect for making your lashes stand out.


Once you've taken the lid off, you simply wiggle the wand and the brush appears. The best thing about this applicator is the wand can bend, making it easier to coat all your lashes. The wand can bend both upwards and downwards to ensure all your lashes are covered. I think this is a really amazing idea for a mascara and it really helps with the application. The brush is quite wide which is again perfect for reaching all the lashes, even the ones right in the inner corner.


The wand does carry a lot of product which sometimes can transfer to the face after application but it's easy to remove with a cotton bud. Speaking of removal, I have no problems removing this with my normal Simple cleanser and it comes off really easily. This claims to be 'flake proof and sweat proof' even though it isn't waterproof and I totally agree. Once this has dried it doesn't flake off or smudge which I find occurs with a lot of mascaras. 

(One coat of Avon Mega Effects mascara)

This gives a really volumizing effect which is the number one factor I look for in a mascara. It also coats the lashes but doesn't clump them. It does also add length to the lashes as you can see in the picture above.

All in all I would definitely purchase this mascara again, I'm loving it! It's definitely made it's way in to my top 5 mascaras, maybe even my top 3. This gives the perfect amount of volume, thickness and length for anybodies lashes.

Have you tried this mascara? What did you think?
xo


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Sunday, 6 October 2013

Everyday Eye Brushes Cleanser



A month ago you may have seen a little post on Etc Llymlrs about an amazing 'press pump' bottle that she uses for her nail varnish remover. Well I saw that same post and a idea popped in to my head. I went straight to Ebay and bought myself one!


Instead of nail varnish remover, I decided to fill mine with a quarter of baby shampoo and the rest water and use it to daily cleanse my makeup brushes. This is perfect for cleaning eye makeup brushes, especially when you are wearing a lot of colour or know that you'll need your brushes later. Simply lay a cotton pad over the dispenser, press down a couple of times and then dab the brush over the cotton pad, it could not be easier. It does a really good job of cleaning the brushes and makes it a lot easier to do a more deep clean when the time comes.

Would you try this? How do you clean your brushes?
xo




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Friday, 4 October 2013

NYC Expert Last Nail Polish Review


These nail varnishes are something I've wanted to share with you for so long but I wanted to build up a little collection before I did  review. I currently own four from the NYC Expert Last Nail Polish collection and I cannot wait to own more.



I would honestly say these are the longest lasting nail varnishes I have ever used, and trust me I've tried a lot. I have nails that chip so, so easily you wouldn't believe but these nail polishes will stay on my nails for at least a week; without a top coat! You can buy them in Superdrug for around £1.79 or Fragrance Direct for 99p I would definitely recommend trying these, you will love them.



The nail wheel above was created with two coats of each and as you can see, that is all they need. Midnight Amethyst is a gorgeous deep blue, purple colour which looks extra special on the toes. Long Time Lavender is a beautiful girly pink with a slight silver shimmer that looks way more expensive than 99p. Late Night Latte was my first purchase from this range and I love it. It's a very natural pink/champagne nude colour but again with a slight shimmer to it. Finally, Gramercy Glitz is the perfect glitter top coat that gives good coverage and is also super easy to remove!

Have you tried any of these? What's your favourite nail polish collection?
xo


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Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Specspost Glasses Review

I know what you're thinking, how can you buy glasses that you haven't even tried on before? Trust me; I felt exactly the same at first. Having worn glasses for 6 years I know first hand how important it is to choose the correct shape, style and colour to suit your face so why would anyone buy glasses online? 


Specspost Glasses

Specspost is an online website that provides prescription glasses for crazily cheap prices! And the reason they can sell their huge variety of glasses for so cheap is the fact that they don't have to pay for 'a shop and expensive testing equipment' as the company is all internet based. This makes it the perfect place to buy glasses for not only students like myself who can't afford to be splashing out £100+ on fashionable glasses but also people who love changing their glasses but simply cannot afford to do so on a regular basis. All the prices on the Specspost website include standard lenses too so there are no hidden costs once you've found the perfect pair (more information can be found here). They also have a home trail service which lets you order up to 3 pairs, try them all and then send them back and pick your favourite!


They also specialise in petite glasses and prescription sunglasses which is an added benefit as many prescription sunglasses can be rather expensive. The two pairs that were my favourites out of the selection sent just so happen to be a petite pair and sunglasses.


Specspost Glasses


I would say I had a rather 'round' face and therefore would stay away from anything labelled as petite. However, this pair of glasses really stood out to me from the selection I trailed as they suited my face shape and fitted perfectly. Another plus of the home trail service is that you can order different styles and sizes to try to find the one that suits you best. 



The petite style of glasses are perfect for people with smaller faces and before I had tried this pair I would never have thought that my face was small or petite. I also love that if you see a pair of glasses in black, the chances are that they will also come in another girl such as brown or tortoise shell which is the case for the glasses I have chosen. These are also available in sunglasses if you love the style. 


Specspost Sunglasses

I've never had prescription sunglasses before as I don't drive so i've never really felt the need; however this summer as the weather was so lovely i'd really been struggling to see distance wise whilst being in the sun and had been borrowing my mum's from time to time. I love that Specspost's sunglasses are fashionable, on trend and affordable as I always thought prescription sunglasses where aimed more to older people rather than the younger generation. Plus they can also be made to your prescription for no extra cost, bargain! 


I love the style of these sunglasses, the shape is lovely. I like how these remind me of Ray Ban style glasses with the square shaped lenses, this is a different concept as the majority of sunglasses that I own are big, circular style glasses. The colour is also a nice change to my normal plain black sunglasses and I think these can really make an outfit stand out, especially for those summer days in the beer garden!


So, if you're looking for some new glasses or just simply fancy a change then I would 100% recommend Specspost. The customer service is brilliant, the staff are friendly and helpful, and the delivery is super fast! I'm so pleased to have found this website and I know that I will definitely be checking Specspost whenever I need new glasses!

Have you ever used Specspost or any online glasses website?
xo

Specspost's Twitter//Facebook//Pinterest

*This post isn't sponsored, however the glasses were sent for me to try*
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