Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Introducing Lassarina

So as most of you know I restarted my blog. I realized that a lot of you follow me from my old blog and your probably wondering about my reasons for my decision. Its only fair that I share more about Lassarina and why I made the change, so I decided to make this post.



Why did I change to Lassarina?

I attended my first proper blogger event in February. This event was organised by ITWBN and it was a great experience, there were so many amazing guest speakers who were full of amazing advice, I learned so much from them. There were a huge number of bloggers at this event both new and established so there was a great exchange of ideas and inspiration all around us. Everyone talked about the effort and love that they put into their blogs and how they could make it bigger and better.

Throughout the day I realized that I loved my blog but I didn't seem to have the same passion as everyone else when they talked about their blog. I questioned what my plans were for it and where I could see my blog going. But unfortunately my answers weren't very forthcoming, it was obvious then that I wasn't willing to put the love and effort into it that it deserved. I just wasn't happy with it. I think I knew as soon as I entered the ITWBN event and saw my badge with my name and blog name that I was unhappy with my blog. I suppose I was off all day because I knew change was imminent. I just had a million thoughts and ideas running through my head.

Of course I had read blogs before but its a big transition to go from reading to writing blogs. I had learned so much from my previous blog but I knew I could do better. I started brainstorming what it was that I wanted from my blog. Its still a process I'm undertaking but I don't expect to have all the answers, I'm just enjoying creating Lassarina and seeing how it grows. I never doubted that I loved blogging and that it was something I wanted to continue doing, but I knew it could be better and I could do better.

I decided to restart my blog instead of just changing it because despite how I began feeling about it, I loved my old blog. I didn't have the heart to erase it because I had become unhappy with it. I know it probably made things more difficult but I'm glad I went about it the way I did. I'll always be able to look back on it and see just how far I have come.

What is Lassarina?

For now Lassarina is a beauty and lifestyle blog. I love sharing beauty items that work for me and things that I enjoy. I read blog posts before I purchase the majority of my beauty items and I always find that they're alot more helpful to me that winging it in a shop! I've also purchased quite a few beauty items that I probably wouldn't have otherwise by reading blogs. A lot of these items have become holy grail products for me, so I like to share my experiences in-case they help someone else.

I'm always honest with these reviews, that hasn't changed from my previous blog. I never saw the point in being dishonest, that doesn't really benefit anyone especially not me. Like I mentioned, I read blogs before I purchase something but if I couldn't trust them I would just feel cheated. So whether something is bought by me or sent to me I always share my own honest opinions of these items on my blog.

The other side of my blog and I suppose the most important to me is a lifestyle aspect. Lifestyle blogging is the whole reason I decided to start blogging in the first place so its very special to me. I like to share parts of my life that are maybe a little more interesting or different. Its a much more personal part of the blog for me. I'm still building up my blogging confidence so I know my lifestyle to beauty ratio is a bit biased but I plan on making it a lot more prominent, so you have been warned ha ha.

There is a great atmosphere around blogging at the moment and there are so many different groups and organisations dedicated to helping bloggers. I think its amazing and its really given me the confidence to grow my blog to the way I envision it. Its also enabled me to get a small grasp on the more technical side of things. I'm obviously still learning and I will be for awhile if not always! But its great to begin expanding my knowledge in this area, especially since its something I never did with my previous blog because I just didn't know how to.

What does Lassarina mean?

You cannot imagine the stress and commitment needed when naming your blog, especially when its the second time you do it! I knew I needed to be sure about it this time because its just not possible to keep switching and changing. I brainstormed for days and I thought of a hundred different names in a variety of ways but nothing appealed to me. I was getting frustrated and (once again) I began doubting if I was doing the right thing.

But eventually I found Lassarina.

Lassarina is a Celtic name derived from the Irish name Lasairiona. I was initially going to go with the Irish version but I couldn't remember the spelling of it for the life of me, not a great start to my blog ha ha. So I decided to go with the Celtic version. The name Lassarina means Fiery Wine.

I fell in love with the name before I knew the meaning but I think it suits my blog perfectly. To me Fiery means passion, and to me that's what Lassarina is. Its the place where I share my passions whether this is the beauty items that I enjoy using and that work for me or the lifestyle posts I share about the things I enjoy doing or that I am passionate about. Obviously these could change in the future but that's the amazing thing about passions you can have more than one. Its been a big change but I'm extremely happy with the platform I've chosen to share them on.

Passion is the backbone of any great adventure and Lassarina is my starting point.

And wine because I like wine.

:)

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Benefit Stay Flawless 15 Hour Primer

I am all about primers! Usually I only get ones that help reduce the appearance of my pores, so I wasn't sure if this Benefit Stay Flawless* was for me, but I tried it after I got it at the ITWBN meetup and I really think its something that I will be investing in.

The 15 hour primer has a pretty big name to live up to but I think it does a good job. I definitely noticed a big difference with the longevity of my makeup and its really been tested lately thanks to all our good weather! To give it a fair test I used a different foundation than my usual Double Wear (which I normally never do because I've very oily combination skin) and I was actually surprised by how long it lasted! Its great to know I'll be able to wear a lighter coverage foundation during summer without worrying about it melting to quickly!

Benefit Stay Flawless 15 Hour Primer

This primer feels very smooth and glides on to the skin, once applied its turns quite sticky to touch but its not uncomfortable. It does dry quickly though so you will need to quickly work your foundation onto your skin and this will help your makeup adhere longer.
The job of this 15 hour primer is to enhance the longevity of your makeup not to cover pores so if that's a problem you suffer from you might need to invest in a different primer to achieve that result. I know I use a pore reducing primer with it, just because I did use a lighter coverage foundation than normal and my skin needs all the help it can get ha ha

I think the packaging of the Stay Flawless 15 hour primer is very cute. It has Black and white polka dots on the outside and the pop of pink on the top. Cute and Colorful packaging really is something that you associate with Benefits Products now.
It has two lids on the primer, I think the second one is there to stop the formula from drying out since it is a twist up formula instead of the usual liquid.
I actually think the twist up formulas are a good idea because you can keep an eye out for when its time to repurchase. There's nothing worse then unexpectedly running out of a product you enjoy using! I would recommend applying with a brush to stop bacteria getting into it though instead of applying directly onto your face.

I wouldn't necessarily say it elongated my makeup to the 15 hour mark but I've very oily skin so I didn't think that it would but I was able to get decent wear out of my lighter coverage foundation which is great, because I normally wouldn't be able to wear something other than my Double wear foundation.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Clonmacnoise Co Offaly

clonmacnoise

This post is a focusing more on the lifestyle part of my blog. I'm trying to make more time for exploring Ireland, we have so much culture and history but it can be easy to forgo for more exotic climates. I visited Clonmacnoise a few days ago and thought it was lovely there. If you do visit though I seriously suggest you wrap up! I almost froze because its built on a mound and is so exposed from all areas! I definitely wouldn't have been able to live there ha ha. It was great to get to see it and even with cold it was worth it :) 

I have always loved history, it just fascinates me. I know some people think its boring but I think its so important and we can learn so much from it. It was always my favorite subject in school and I still have a love for it whether its visiting historical places or reading books dedicated to it! 

I have to admit that I didn't really know much about Clonmacnoise before visiting but luckily there is a informative film shown to all tourists when they enter the center. I tried to take in as much as I could from this so hopefully I'm able to share some of what I learned with you.

clonmacnoise

clonmacnoise
The pilgrim Aedh, son of the chief of Oriel died on pilgrimage 606AD

Clonmacnoise had been a National Monument in Ireland since 1877. It was founded in 548, by St Ciaran and It is overlooking a large area of bog through which the river Shannon flows. Its location in earlier times was literally at the cross roads of Ireland. This critical location meant that clonmacnoise developed as a centre of religion, learning, trade, craftsmanship, and political influence in Ireland. 
Clonmacnoise contains a number of churches varying in date from the 10th to the 17th century, a round tower, a castle, three stone crosses and a large collection of early grave slabs it actually resembled more of a town than a monastery. The earliest building were made of timber so they haven't survived but traces of them have been found through excavation.

clonmacnoise

clonmacnoise

It was situated on boarder between the two provinces of Meath and Connacht, and benefited from patronage of powerful kings. Until the 9th century it had close associations with Connacht. From the 9th to 11th century it was in alliance with the kings of Meath and after this it reverted back to Connacht alliances again. Clonmacnoise was plundered on many occasions but fell into decline from the 13th Century when it became merely the seat of an impoverished Bishop. Clonmacnoise is also the burial place of St. Ciaran and it had attracted pilgrims for nearly 1500 years.

clonmacnoise

clonmacnoise

There is so much history associated with Clonmacnoise that its impossible to write it all in a blog post but I recommend visiting it if your interested in finding out more, or even reading books dedicated to it! Make sure to let me know what places you enjoy visiting in Ireland :)

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Isadora Nude Essentials Eye Color Bar

When I was younger, there was no separating me and my eye shadow, it was always something I couldn't leave the house without. Eventually though I expanded my makeup, fell in love with lipsticks and there was no going back. That is until I received the Nude Essentials Eye Color Bar* from Isadora.

isadora nude essentials eye color bar

From the first moment I swatched the eye shadows in the Nude Essential bar I fell head over heels! There are six beautiful shades in this eye bar, three are matte and three are shimmery. Straight away you are getting a great mixture of colors depending on what look you are going for. It really annoys me when no matte eye shadows are put in a palette, so it definitely caught my attention there.

I was going to pick my favorite colors from this Nude Essentials palette but as soon as I began swatching I realized that I loved them all, which is very unusual for me ha ha. The colors range from a pale Sand highlight color to more champagne colors to darker warm brown colors so you are given extremely versatile eye shadows!

All these colors are extremely pigmented and blend so well I actually thinks its joy to work with especially because I wouldn't normally wear eye shadow so im a bit out of practice ha ha.
Its so easy to go from a simple everyday look to a more intense night time look without to much effort. I also found that as the day went on it didn't crease, something that rarely happens for me unless I put on a primer first!

isadora nude essentials eye color bar swatches

Another thing I love about this eye bar is that it really compliments my eye color! I have light green eyes so it can be difficult to find eye shadows that don't wash me out but this eye bar does the job for me! I think it would work great with a whole range of eye colors so I definitely recommend swatching them for yourself. I doubt you will be able to leave the shop without it ha ha.

The Nude Essential Bar comes in a small black palette which is the perfect size for carrying around in your makeup bag without taking up to much space! When you open it you have a nice sized mirror and best of all large pans of eye shadow color so I definitely think its worth it considering the amount of product you get.

I think this costs 17.50e so it is pricey but when you break it down its less than 3e per eye shadow which is such great value for money! I really cannot find any fault with this product and it hasn't left my side since I got it so I think it is well worth the price! :)

Saturday, 14 March 2015

NYX Matte Lipstick Haul and Review

After hearing so much about NYX since it came to Ireland, I finally decided to invest in some of their products, and since I'm loving everything matte at the moment I decided to go with their matte lipsticks.
I am really just so in love with these lipsticks, they are all incredibly creamy and the amount of shades that are available is just insane! But unfortunately I couldn't have them all so after alot of swatching, I ended up buying these three shades.

Strawberry Daiquiri

The first matte lipstick I got was in the colour Strawberry Daiquiri 22 its a beautiful coral/salmon pink colour. It is a perfect colour for spring, as its just so fresh. I already have a shimmery coral lipstick so I couldn't wait to buy a matte version, and this does not disappoint! Ive been wearing this non stop lately, its just beautiful

NYX matte lipstick strawberry daiquiri


Whipped Caviar

The second matte lipstick is my new favorite I cant get enough of it! its the color Whipped Caviar. Its a beautiful muted plum colour. Its just an amazing everyday colour. Its so easy to dress up or down! This was a colour that I had wanted for awhile and im so glad that I have it now. I honestly haven't stopped wearing it!                      
  
NYX matte lipstick whipped caviar


 Euro Trash

The last matte lipstick I bought was in the colour Eurotrash (I love the name ha ha). Eurotrash is a dark pink brown. Its not normally a colour that I would go for as brown lipsticks don't normally appeal to me but as soon as I swatched it, I fell in love and had to have it. Now that I have it I cant stop wearing it, its just beautiful!

NYX matte lipstick eurotrash


For me all these lipsticks just glide on beautifully! I was worried about how the matte lipsticks would apply but they don't feel drying and they don't dry out my lips throughout the day so Im very happy! They actually feel pretty creamy and feel almost moisturizing on my lips compared to other matte lipsticks. I sometimes forget that they're matte, so its just the best of both worlds for me!
All these lipsticks are very pigmented, the colors last for a few hours but do need to be reapplied after eating or drinking :)
      
I really love the packaging on the matte lipsticks. They have black packaging with clear plastic in the middle so you get a  peek of colour which is really pretty. Its also really sturdy and chic, which is great considering how affordable they are!

These lipsticks are also very affordable. I paid 7.50e each for these matte lipsticks from my local pharmacy. Which is a great price for the quality, you really can't go wrong with these especially since they have such a creamy formula. I cant wait to add more to my little collection!

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Ren Skincare

If you saw my post about Heaven Scent Beauty Spa Galway you know that a part of my prize was winning a selection of Ren Skincare products to try. I cannot stop talking about Ren Skincare honestly when Ruth introduced me to these products she totally just changed the way I feel about my skin and in general my skincare routine! You can find Ruth here here.

Ren is a clean product line. This means all their products are 100% natural and only uses plant and mineral derived ingredients so if you want to make sure that only natural products are being put on your skin than I highly recommend Ren. I have sensitive skin but ever since I started using it my skin has never looked and felt better. I really think that my skin was being overloaded and sometimes we assume that the more that's in a product the better it will work but with your skin this is definitely not always the case.

* REN is free from synthetic fragrance, mineral oil, petrolatum, sulfate detergents, synthetic colours, animal ingredients and parabens. In addition, REN products do not contain potential irritants including: glycols and diglycols (such as propylene glycol), PEG's, PPGs, urea, D.E.A, T.E.A, PABA and other synthetic sunscreens, aliphatic alcohols/hydrocarbons, phthalates, fumarates, amines, alkanolamines, synthetic AHAs/BHAs, polyacrylamide, metacrylate, elastomer, poloxamer, styrene, vinyl, polyquaternium, synthetic chelating agents, nylon, nitriles, nitrates, nitrosamine releasers, bromates, fluor, aluminum and alumina et al (Taken from Ren Skincare's website)

My favorite products from Ren Skincare range so far are these! These were all samples that I got from Heaven Scent Beauty but halfway through using them I fell in love so I've either bought all these myself or im in the process of buying them :)

Cleansing Milk:
This Cleansing Milk is from the EverCalm range. It is a very light formula but after using it you can definitely feel that your skin is clean and alot softer. One pump and a half is generally what I use and I find that its enough to do my whole face and neck. It feels really soothing on my skin and works so well as cleaning my skin. This also smells so good! I really wish I could share it with you. I always get compliments about smelling nice when I use this which is always a bonus especially when you've just woken up or are going to bed ha ha.
Vacuum packaging is used for this product to this stops germs and bacteria entering it. This also stops the need for unnecessary preservatives and I find its also great for letting you know how much product you have used so you'll never be caught off guard. When you first pump this onto your hands it has a yellow colour to it but it applies transparent. It spreads so well it basically just glides onto your skin its just so smooth! :)

Ren Skincare Cleansing Milk

Rescue Cream:
This Rescue cream is from the Vita Mineral range. It is a very thick and heavy cream and initially doesn't spread very well, I find that I need to warm it up between my fingers before applying it so that im not tugging on my skin BUT the packaging does mention this. I have to say it has become something that I cant do without anymore. Once it is warmed up is extremely moisturizing! As I mentioned above it is a heavy cream so I usually wear it at night where it has time to set into my skin. Since I have used this though alot of my dryness has gone away, which i'm delighted about! Out of all my skin problems dryness was a big issue because nothing will ruin my makeup more then seeing alot of dry patches, it just really bothered me. I don't find this to be very greasy but it will take awhile to settle in so I definitely recommend using this at night.
I love this product, every morning when I wake up my skin just feels amazing! I also use a very small amount of this on my lips and I haven't had any cracking of my lips or drying so needless to say, this Rescue cream has not left my side since I got it!

One thing to note is that since Ren Skincare is a clean range, Ren Moisturizers do not contain an SPF so you'll have to make sure you add one to your skincare routine. I think SPF should be added separately to your moisturizer anyways though because it is so important and its very important to establish a routine with it instead of relying on other products to do it for you so you know your definitely covered. They do have an SPF range as far as im aware but I haven't tried them yet to give my thoughts on them.

Ren Skincare Rescue Cream

Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask*:
This mask is just heaven! It was the first time I had ever used an acid exfoliator. Before if people said it to me I would just think "Why would you put acid on your face?" But acid has a negative term here! I actually prefer to use acid masks now especially over harsh exfoliates. You just apply this on your skin and it removes all the dead skin cells from your face so that your skin can start renewing its cells quicker.
The Glycolactic mask has a nice apricot smell and a orange tinge to it but it does apply clear on the skin, although it will be shiny on your face and can be quite sticky. This is another very thick product but it does spread very well on the skin and a little goes along way. I found that when its on the skin there is no harsh chemical feel and skin is actually left really refreshed and so smooth! Like ridiculously soft.
After you have applied this mask you leave it on your skin for a few minutes and then you remove it with some lukewarm water and a face cloth.There was no redness to my skin after using it, which for someone like me who suffers from alot of redness this mask is just a pleasure to use. I definitely prefer using this over my usual exfoliants and I doubt I would go back to them. I find that by using this mask my skin doesn't feel stripped and it has reduced the amount of oil that my skin produces and im also not left with red sore skin .

Ren Skincare glycolatic mask


So there you have it, my favorite Ren Skincare products so far! Also another bonus is that Ren do not test on animals themselves or have any third party test on animals on their behalf! :)

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Spring Walks

We finally have some nice weather! I'm delighted, I've been waiting for this for ages ha ha. I have to admit I love winter and everything about it, but sunshine that just instantly puts a smile on my face! :)

Loughrea Lake

Loughrea Lake

Red Setter Loughrea Lake

Red setter Loughrea Lake

Loughrea Lake

Birds Loughrea Lake