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Budgeting for Beginners

31 January 2016
Budgeting can be such a bore and I suppose that's why many of us avoid it. We'll do a bit of mental budgeting, check our bank accounts regularly but we don't really know what we're spending. While I've always been a saver as apposed to a spender and often very conscientious with my money before I came to uni I never really had to budget. But since I've become an independent adult of sorts, basic budgeting is a skill that I've had to acquire.

How to budget easy budgeting spreadsheet

Personally I find the easiest way to budget is to fill in this simple spread sheet everytime I buy something. To make this easier I try to keep all of my receipts so I don't forget what I've spent. I've created a spreadsheet that you can download below if you want a little help when it comes to budgeting. The spread sheet has a spaces to record spending Monday - Sunday for 52 weeks, so you can start whenever you like and have enough space for a whole year. I've input all of the formulas so that excel calculates the total weekly spend, the amount left of your budget for the week, the total yearly spend, total remaining budget for the year. All you need to do is decide how much you want to spend each week and insert that into the cell saying 'Weekly Budgeted Amount'.

Download Template Here

Keeping a record of everything I spend has also made it easier for me to save money as spending money seems more real. I also don't panic that I'm going to run out of money at the end of the term because I know how much I can spend each week. I know this wasn't the typical beauty or fashion post you were probably expecting to find on my blog today but I hope it has been useful to at least one of you out there. 

Eleanor xx

Magic Hour

26 January 2016
Sometimes when the chance to take blog photos arises you've got to grab the opportunity with both hands, especially when it comes to natural lighting in the British winter. This was the case on an ordinary afternoon last week when I noticed the golden light from the late afternoon sun seep into my bedroom and I knew I had to take advantage of the magic hour quickly before the sun began to set. I grabbed my camera and my boyfriend (after I'd begged him to be my photographer) and these were the results.UK fashion blogger ootd over the knee boots public desire hope

What I'm Wearing - New Look Hat, Pull and Bear Jumper, H&M Skirt, TK Maxx Bag, Accessorize Bag Charm and Public Desire Boots

While the warm tones in the pictures may not reflect it, it was bitterly cold that day but luckily my cosy roll neck jumper and my knee high boots kept me warm while still remaining to look like a girl rather than the Michelin Man. The dark colour palette kept my outfit reasonably wintry thus contrasting with the short pleated skirt, a traditionally spring/summer item of clothing.

I'd love to know what you think of my last minute photo shoot, or perhaps your tips for keeping warm while looking good in the colder months.

Eleanor xx

10 Minute Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

20 January 2016
One thing you may not know about me is that I love baking, I have done ever since I was a kid. My love of baking stems from my mum, who taught me to cook just as her mother taught her and so on throughout the generations. When I was younger my mum was always the go to women for charity cake sales and cooking lessons at Brownies, so it's only natural for me to share one of our favourite recipes with you.

I have no idea where this recipe originally came from but I've been using it for years because I am yet to come across a cookie recipe that beats it. Not only are these the tastiest double chocolate chip cookies ever, but they so quick and easy that even a beginner to baking could cook them. 

Easy 10 minute double chocolate chip cookie recipe beginners baking

The Recipe
1 Packet of Betty Crocker's Devils Food Cake Mix
2 Eggs
1/2 a Cup of Vegetable Oil
1 Bag of Milk Chocolate Chips

Serves 24

Step 1
Preheat the oven to 175°C and either line a large baking tray with parchment paper or grease the tray with butter.

Step 2
Put all of the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix them together with a wooden spoon. Keep mixing until the ingredients bind together to form a dough. For a twist on your typical double chocolate chip cookies swap the milk chocolate chips for small chunks of your favourite chocolate. 

Step 3
Form small balls of the cookie dough (about 3cm wide) and evenly spread them out on a baking tray. For rough looking cookie like pictured above try not to make the balls smooth. Also leave plenty of room between the balls as the mixture will spread, this may mean that you have to use 2 baking trays.

Step 4
Put the cookies in the oven to bake for 8-10 minutes. Then when they come out of the oven leave them to cool on the baking tray before trying to move them.

Step 5
Eat your cookies! Personally I think they're nicest when eaten warm with a delicious hot chocolate or a cold glass of milk.

I'd love to know what your favourite recipes are or if you try my recipe what you think.

Eleanor xx

L'Oreal Paris Telescopic Mascara Review

14 January 2016
When it comes to the battle between high street vs high end makeup, one area where the high street excels is mascara. While I am willing to pay more for foundation or eyeshadows, 80% of the time I will choose the high street for my mascara because in my opinion they are just as good as the high end offerings but for a fraction of the price.

Though despite high street mascara's being of such a high quality I rarely see reviews of them, I think that is one of the reasons why my review of Max Factor's 2000 Calorie Waterproof Mascara is one of the most viewed posts on my blog. So when I ran out of my previous mascara I thought what better time to try something new and write a review of it.

L'Oreal Paris Telescopic Mascara Review UK Beauty Blogger Superdrug Boots

The L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara is described as "High Precision Intensity for longer looking lashes. In the flash of a stroke up to 60% longer looking lashes and intensity lash by lash. The high precision multi comb is made of supple elastomer bristles that help give a precise application. The flat surfaces of the multi-comb stretch the formula over your lashes."

While I'm not sure I'd agree with the claims of up to 60% longer looking lashes, it does make my lashes look thick, defined and very black. As to be said for the "high precision multi comb" (or to your average person the mascara wand), it's very skinny allowing you to get right to the root of your lashes.The formula is very wet so gives you a lot of time to play with your lashes to achieve the desired look and despite the wet formula I have not found that it smudges or transfers unlike other mascaras I have tried in the past.

Overall I love the way this makes my lashes look thick and full, almost giving the appearance of false eyelashes. In my opinion this is more of a thickening and defining mascara rather than a lengthening mascara as it claims. My only fault with this product though as it's not a particularly great lower lash mascara as I find the brush has so much product on it swamps my delicate lower lashes. That being said it's not a major problem as I often use more than one mascara anyway. 

Have you tried the L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara? 

Eleanor xx

The Best Of The Lipstick, The Girl and Her Wardrobe 2015

4 January 2016
With 2015 having ended, I think this is the perfect time for me to reflect on the year that has passed. In terms of my blog there has been quite a bit of change, some for the better while some for the worst. Over the course of the year, my posts have gradually been improving in terms of my photography and writing but unfortunately this has come a cost as the quantity of posts has rapidly decreased.

Balancing a blog, education, a job and a personal life has proven to be incredibly difficult so I admire those who posts regularly and frequently. I hope in the New Year to keep improving my blog, in every aspect not just in quality. But in the mean time here is a recap of 2015 on The Lipstick, The Girl and Her Wardrobe for you to catch up or reminisce with me.

What I Got For Christmas 2014
My first post of 2015 was a "What I Got For Christmas". While I haven't decided yet if I'm going to do a "What I Got For Christmas 2015" you can always have a nosy back at what I was lucky enough to receive last year.

Review - Nars Virtual Domination Palette
A beautiful palette that I still use to this day, featuring some of Nars' most loved blush shades and the famous Laguna bronzer. 

How I Take and Edit My Blog Photos
Not much has changed about the way I take and edit my photos since I wrote that post, the only difference is that I now use a 40mm lens. Still, an interesting read if you like to see what happens behind the scenes.

Outfit Post - If You Are What You Say You Are
A flashback to a time when my Adidas Superstars were still white, since then I have wrecked them through nights out and excessive wear *R.I.P Superstars, you were well loved*

Outfit Post - Leather and Pleats
My most popular outfit post of 2015, featuring photos photos taken in my home city of Bristol.

Outfit Post - Meet Steph
An insight into one of my closet friends style, a bit of a change to my usual posts where you get to learn a little bit more about my life.

My Mac Lipstick Collection... So Far
A look at some of my most prided possessions; my Mac lipsticks. This is also kind of a 'most worn lipsticks' post because my Mac lipsticks are practically all I wear.

Review - Benefit Erase Paste
I'm ashamed to say this is a product that I'd forgotten about until I was writing this post, especially as it's a great product. I may have to go and repurchase this one...

Mini Beauty Haul
Who doesn't love a beauty haul. Timeless and not only addictive to read but write.
Review - Inglot Freedom System Concealer Palette 
When I was looking to buy this product I really struggled to find any reviews of it online which made it incredibly difficult because I had to order the product online and I wanted to see some good swatches. So of course it only made sense to write my own review when I finally got to try the product myself.

My Tips for a Party Holiday
Its that time of year again when people are starting to book their summer holidays, so if you are going on a girls holiday this summer and want to know what to expect then this is a great read.

Outfit Post - The Rhine Valley
A little post about how I spent my summer in the beautiful Rhine Valley, featuring one of the many outfits I wore while I was there.

Outfit Post - My New Home
In September of last year I started university so it only seemed right for my first outfit post in this new city to be taken by one of the cities many beautiful landmarks.

This is of course just a few of the posts I wrote last year and I hope that there will be many more during 2016. Who knows what this year holds for us, but I know that if it is at least half as good as 2015 was, it will still be amazing.

Eleanor xx