January Favourites


I feel excited today, today I get to write my first monthly favourites post. I feel like my child has hit a milestone, like it’s lost its first tooth or something. So January is almost over which is cray - think back to how slowww time went by as a child, like summer holidays are comparable to 5 years in ‘today’s’ speed of time – I usually wish my life away during January as February is my birthday month and who doesn’t like birthdays. It’s not a massive selection of products this month but I’m loving each one. Some rediscovered flames and some new flings.

Let’s get into it.
First off I need to start off with my new Mac purchase. Everyone and their Mother’s, Mother’s, Uncle knows about this true ‘cult’ status product – Velvet Teddy. I think I actually leapt off the sofa, much to the alarm of George and puppy Cash, when I got the email from Mac to say ‘Velvet Teddy Back In Stock’. Shit yes, I think were my exact words. Needless to say, I’ve worn this lip every day. Seriously cannot get enough. The colour is just perfect and the matte finish is too sexy. All I need now is Whirl lip liner to come back in stock – checks email.

Next I’ll jump back to an old favourite that has made it’s way back into my daily routine this month and that’s Urban Decay Naked 3. It took me a while to get on board with this pallet when I first got it as I wasn’t sure I could make the warm-pinkish tones work for me but I’m so into it now. I really love Nooner, Mugshot and Darkside. The consistency is lovely and creamy for the matte shades and not too much fallout with the shimmers. Just yeah, enjoying using this daily. Although I do miss my original Naked pallet who sadly passed last month. Maybelline Color Tattoo 24hr eye shadows. Not new to the beauty scene at all but new to me, I picked these up the other week in colours Permanent Taupe, a gorgeous matte shade, and And On Bronze, a beautiful shimmery bronze (duh) colour. I’ve been so obsessed with these and there are so great if I’m running late for work (most days) I can just smudge a little over my eye and they look stunning. Another thing is they last so long and there is little fading or creasing. Yeah, love these little beauts.

I have always, always loved a black nail. I think I bought my first black nail polish when I was around 13 – it will have been a Collection 2000 product I guess – and loved the look ever since. I think everyone agrees that Essie nail polishes are the tits. So good. Liquorice has been worn a lot this month. I think the quality I look for in a black nail polish is that it resembles black PVC in its finish, unless matte, and Essie is very PVC. Yeah, 50 shades.  
I’ve been loving a lot of skincare products this month, 2 I’ve talked about on this blog already. These being La Roche-Posay Serozinc and Alpha-H Liquid Gold. La Roche-Posay Serozinc is something I’ve integrated now into my daily routine, it’s so quick and easy to use and really has made a difference for my skin. Alpha-H Liquid Gold is just.. so good. I get so much joy from using this product, I use it about 3 times a week as my last step before bed and wake up renewed, it clears the dead skin cells and my skin feels brighter and plumper. Love it.  Lastly for skincare, Garnier MicellarCleansing Water – love this stuff it’s so good. I know Bioderma is big in the game when it comes to cleansing water but currently I’m happy with Garnier’s offering. It’s cheap (£4.99 for 400ml), clears makeup really well and is super gentle.

Lastly, Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes. I keep this book next to my bed, like the Holy Bible. I can’t emphasise how brilliant this book is, good beauty books are few and far between. The narrative is great, Sali is a very engaging writer. I totally love the finish of this book too, I have a weird thing about photographs printed on matte paper – it makes the paper geek in me squee. There is no question left unanswered in this book it is very comprehensive but don’t be fooled it is only relevant for beginners there is something to be gained for people of all levels.

Sometimes I just find it too difficult to write a blog post sign off, so this posts sign off is me telling you my struggle with sign offs.


La Roche-Posay Serozinc


If you’re a big beauty blog reader then you’ll be like “come on Nia, that’s so 2k13” but sometimes guys, I just like to saunter my way over to the bandwagon, maybe stop off on the way grab a coke or something. Basically, sometimes I’m very, very late to join the trends. Regretting that now, I so wish Serozinc had come into my life sooner.


Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse


May I first start this post with a completely off-the-topic-non-related subject? This being ‘Serial’. And my new found obsession. I’m so into it. I have listened to 8 in 3 days. I tend to do this - when I love something, I frigging love it and will obsess about it until I tank out or said something finishes (a tv show, podcast etc.) So Serial, it’s a series created by Sarah Koenig who is investigating a murder case that happened in 1999 where a young teenage girl was murdered and her ex-boyfriend was charged for her murder. It’s fascinating. I won’t harass you anymore about it, I just suggest you ‘get on it’ as we say in the UK. 

So back to beauty stuff and things.


My Current Selfridges Wishlist

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Hey guys, what up. I thought I'd share with you my current Selfridges wishlist. I am an avid wishlist maker, always have been and way, way before the modern glory that is online shopping I created the most epically crafted 'wishlists' for Father Christmas made from cutting the photographs from the Argos catalogue and sticking them onto various hues of colored card, including of course the catalogue numbers. Did anyone else do this?? It was the 1997 method of today wish-listing.

Anyway, I'm sure to anyone who is a regular beauty blog/vlog reader/watcher a lot of these items are self explanatory and it's highly likely that we have these items as a common bond in our laundry lists. "Wishlist sisters!" Like Charlotte Tilbury, now I'm not sure if there is real want in my heart for her stuff  or that I'm just falling for the clever marketing ploy of the CT team. It's probably is the later. But it's working, I want. Tonnes of beauty bloggers are raving about these products. And there's something wrong with the world if the range doesn't live up to the hype, right? I've opted for the 'Dolce Vita' - The colours are just plain pretty.

Kiehls is a brand that is permanently on my wishlists. I could spend hours in Space NK just staring at the glass shelves filled with Kielhs. Drooling. So naturally, there are 4 Kielhs items in my wishlist - I recently found out that Norman Reedus wears Kiehls Musk - please see below post for more information on my Daryl Dixon/Norman Reedus obsession - and the fragrance is unisex. Of course I want to share fragrances with Norman. I've read good stuff about the Rare earth masque for blemish treatment so that and the cleanser are on the list. The Midnight Recovery Concentrate has been on my radar for so long now, too long. I love overnight treatments, it makes me excited to get up in the morning and see what my face looks like. And I ain't a morning person.

I've just started using Aesop's Parsley Seed Masque and I'm totally in love and now NEED, yes NEED, more Parsley goodness in my life. The cleanser is in there, mainly because of the bottle.

Alexander McQueen. Man oh man what a bag. Way out of my reach currently, hence having the Skull Card Holder as a more attainable goal. I feel that a card holder would fit into my life way better than a wallet, I'm a 'throw cards in my pocket' kinda girl resulting in lost and bent cards - I actually bent my debit card to a 90 degree angle once, still works.

Lastly, let me mention Bobbi Brown, as her Long-wear Even Finish Foundation is currently what I'm 'checking-out with' - on the Bobbi Brown website, free delivery sorry Selfridges - I don't normally like to buy things on a whim (she says, lying) but this foundation looks so great and sounds like it'll be a good match for my skin. So I'm excited to try it. 

Have you tried any of these products?


Alpha-H Liquid Gold


Ah, my new love (standing in joint first position with my current obsession, Daryl Dixon). Seriously – can I just talk about The Walking Dead for a second? – How did I leave it this long to let Daryl Dixon into my life? If you are not watching The Walking Dead, do. You won’t regret it and your loins will thank you eternally for Mr Dixon. Honestly, I’m not doing this for comedic value – I’m truly asking for a life sized cardboard cut-out for my 25th birthday. I don’t have to explain myself. By the way, my hatred for The Governor is real and flourishing.

Where was I? Ah yes, Alpha-H Liquid Gold. I’m a new found Hydrochloric Acid belieber, wait. Believer. True now, I was at first terrified of the thought of rubbing anything featuring the word ‘acid’ on to my face. And yes this is the image I envisioned before applying;

I’ve never actually seen that movie.

But this doesn’t happen at all, there is only the very slightest tingling which I can handle (tough guy face). The instructions call for a well cleansed face and pre-moisturised – moisturising after applying Liquid Gold is optional but leaves for a ‘less intense’ treatment. So far I’ve only used Liquid Gold on its own – meaning it’s the last thing I apply before bed – so I can’t comment on the effectiveness when using it in conjunction with a moisturiser. I guess I want it to work at its full power every time I use it.  So Liquid Gold effectively takes the top layer of dead skin cells away, renews the skin and leaves it looking even, bright and dewy. But such a good thing has to come with a downside – only a slight one, this being that because you’re stripping dead skin cells your skin is more susceptible to sun damage so we need to be slapping on that factor 30+. 

I’m completely in love with this stuff – it is the perfect multitasker as it is a toner, exfoliator, serum, and moisturiser in one. Quadruple threat. I use it now 3, maybe 4 times a week and I feel like I’m giving myself a treat when I use it. ‘I’m special’. And the results have been so, so awesome. My skin looks renewed. After Christmas, the cold weather, gorging on chocolate and greasy things and alcoholic celebrations my skin was looking a little not-unlike my Walking Dead zombie cronies. But now ‘it’s alive!’ and looks more youthful. It’s brought out a nice dewy, plump quality in my skin. Seriously guys, I can’t sing its praises enough I urge you to treat yourself to this wonder-potion. It’s well worth saving up for and splurging on, it’s a cult product worth the hype.

You can get Alpha-H Liquid Gold at Cult Beauty for £33.50 for 100ml


Weekend Purchases #1


Dear Wallet,
           I'm so very sorry for my behavior over the past 2 months. I promise to hereby refrain from such behavior in the future. At least, I'll try.

Oh dear.  Yeah, so this happened. But not all these things I am to take full blame for - first of all as far as La Roche-Posay Serozinc Spray is concerned I blame the internet entirely  It has been raved about for so long by bloggers and now is finally available in the UK, so I had to try it. Right?  So no more eBaying and trips to gay Pariee needed to get your dirty mitts on this raved-about-holy-grail-#HG-life-saver product. The website now selling Serozinc spray was having a 20.15% sale on everything so naturally  I didn't just buy the spray - I also got Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Usage Dry Oil complete impulse buy.

I went into town with George for washing powder and a mop head - Rock and Roll - and naturally,  needing nothing from Boots, I went in and bought 6 things. Two mascaras; L'Oreal Paris Mega Volume Miss Manga Punky Mascara which is a new release by L'Oreal and is a texturising formula and apparently  will allow you to style your lashes into a punky mohawk. In the event that the Miss Manga fails miserably I repurchased an old friend in the form of Soap & Glory™ Thick & Fast Flash Extensions Mascara High Definition Collagen*Coat. Sitting alongside L'Oreal Miss Manga was another new release of theirs L'Oreal Paris Super Liner Smokissime and being on offer it fell into my basket. I also picked up Soap and Glory's One Heck of a Blot which is another raved about product I have yet to have had my hands on until now. Hair wise, I've read some good things about Bleach London's Reincarnation Mask - I am seriously lacking in good hair masks and my hair isn't too pleased with this cold wintery weather and hot air-con days, so even though I don't have bleached hair I needed a high intensity moisture restoring mask. Lastly, I purchased L'Oreal Color Riche Metallic Top Coat in Gold Leaf after being so very very  close to buying Gold Leaf Lacquer Rococo from Space NK I decided to go for a cheaper alternative first.

Have you guys made any purchases this weekend?


F (rizz) Off! - Ojon Rare Blends Tamer


I am no stranger to the scourge that is frizzy hair - thanks Sheldon -  I'll think I'm having a good hair day until  I've been out of the door 5 minutes and catch a glimpse of my new halo of flyaways. Hence the following purchase; Ojon Rare Blends Tamer. It comes in this mascara-esqe tube in a sunrise orange gradient - bringing with it the new day of frizzless style. I'm so deep. In all seriousness, I love the packaging. It's a great size for throwing into your handbag for touch-ups on the go. The mascara wand applicator is a perfect size for targeting those pesky and stubborn 'baby hairs' and the formula is fantastic! Seriously, gone will be the days of over-hair-spraying in desperate attempt to flatten  everything. I'm so guilty of that. No longer will I be a crunchy nightmare - Ross Geller springs to mind. The oils are so light in the serum so it doesn't look  like there's anything in your hair, which is great. I mainly use this when my hair is up - as I tend to wear my hair down in messy beach waves a lot - and I tackle my personal trouble areas; the forehead hairline and by my ears (does anyone else get this ear fuzz? My God - so annoying.) But this would work so well with any polished look, especially along the parting.

I'd love to see this becoming a girls handbag staple on a night out, I envision gorgeously styled girls leaning over club sinks topping up their powder, lips and taming their hair.

Find Ojon Rare Blend Tamer for £12.50 @ Boots 




Well, I am well and truly finished after this year’s festivities. I do not want to see turkey again for a long, long while nor do I want to see any kind of assorted chocolate – which will be a hard ask seeing as we have at least 5 tubs of Quality Street on the coffee table (4 of which I’ve already cleared the strawberry and orange flavoured ones.) So here it is, that obligatory post of New Year’s resolutions.  I thought long and hard about whether to write about this as I find that it’s okay to lie to myself and pretend ‘I will stick to mine this year!’ but lying to the internet… I’m kidding; I really will try harder this year to stick to the following. Promise.  

“Hi guys, my name is Nia and... I’m a cola-holic.” It’s true. I have no preference; Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Pepsi Diet, Coke Zero, Pepsi Max. It doesn’t matter; I will drink this over water any day. So this is a big one for me, I know the benefits of drinking water,  I’ve known for a very long time that I should be drinking the quoted ‘8 glasses of water’ a day. So yes – bye, bye my liquid lover. I will miss your dark, mysterious yet sweet soul.

Oh dear... This is a big one. I am f***ing awful at swearing (see what I did there.) I think it’s due to working in an office with only men – but I can’t blame only that. I must admit, I do enjoy the occasional bad word. Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not the kind to be in the line at Tesco f’ing and blinding around young children, it’s mainly an at home sport of mine but I think I should cut back.

By ‘harder’ I just mean keep trying hard with posts, photography etc. I started The Pretty Beatniks 3 or 4 weeks ago now and I’m really enjoying it. I love the creativeness it brings and I love connecting with you guys! I love reading comments then checking out your blogs in return.  I’ve been reading beauty and fashion blogs for the longest time now and am so pleased to have my own little space on the internet now so I want to keep it up.

This is probably one of the most common New Year’s resolutions and probably one of the first ones to fall through when you’re driving home from work at 6pm with the heaters on and the waft of the nearby KFC penetrates your car (that happens to me, a lot.) Maybe I should have typed ‘EAT BETTER’ as that’s easier to stick by. I’ll try to put extra bananas in the trolley and not 2 bags of pan au chocolat’s.  

Here’s one we should all be trying! It’s so important to take time out for yourself in the week; read a book, take a bath, paint your nails. Whatever it is, just do something for you. I’m a first time home owner and a first time puppy owner and as such there is always a million things to be doing. So I think just taking half an hour to read a book, watch bad television or put a mask on will be a massive improvement to my routine.

Do you have any resolutions this year?