Apivita Natural Serum in 'Radiance'








Having had clear skin FINALLY for a good few months in a row after being on the Roaccutane treatment, I got a bit panicky when I saw a couple of little breakouts appearing. 


It really wasn't anything too bad, it was just a couple here and there but it got on my nerves! It made me realise that I don't actually have a serum to use at night and that my skin was possibly missing a bit of moisture/hydration goodness that a serum can provide. 

So I decided to go on the hunt for one. 

I heard about the Greek skincare brand 'Apivita' from the YouTuber 'Arielle Cristiana' who also suffers from some breakouts so I knew I could trust her opinion that this brand would be good for my skin type. 

The brand Apivita is all about natural ingredients and is heavily inspired by bees. I know, I found this a tad strange but it really seems to work. 

I chose to go for the 'Radiance' serum which is all about calming and soothing fresh breakouts all the while improving damaged/discoloured skin from previous breakouts. 

I wanted to give this product a little while to test out because I find that skincare products take a little bit longer to grasp an opinion on. But, after four weeks of continuous use, I feel prepared to give my opinion. 

I can honestly say that I really love this serum. My skin pretty much drinks it up. It comes with a little droplet applicator which is very handy and makes the product really easy to use and for me to determine how much I'm using which is always a bonus. 

I noticed that my skin felt incredible after the first application of this product, no joke, and has definitely come far from what it was like at the beginning of the month. The discolouration marks are DEFINITELY fading and the spots are being kept at bay. 

I plan to buy another of the serums, the 'Hydration' one to be exact, and I've already purchased the 'Purifying' face mask which is on its way from Greece right now :-)

If you have oily, acne prone skin like mine then I think that this is worth a shot for you! 

LIFE OF RILEY

Photo Diary: Lunch At The Millennium Hotel







Last Thursday, my mum and I planned to meet in the city centre for lunch because we were both free.

So I got the bus and a train into Glasgow to meet her at George square. I thought we would just go somewhere like 'Pret' or 'Cafe Nero' but they were pretty busy with university students. So we decided to go to The Millennium Hotel. This really is a beautiful hotel.

We went in the entrance which is just round the side of the building and were met by dim, but beautiful lights that led us to a server at the lunch room. Yes, there's actually a lunch room. I was informed the restaurant is for bigger meals and so this smaller eating area was for lunch. This sounded perfect for my mum and I. 

We were led past a bar/coffee bar, through an archway to a table for two by the enormous glass window that is the front of the hotel. 

We ordered a couple of cranberry juices and a ham and cheese toastie. I can't even tell you how delicious it was! 

Yes, it was a little bit on the pricier side but, that was to be expected when you're eating smack bang in the middle of glasgow's infamous George Square. 

If you are fancying something a little bit more sophisticated and special for a lunch date and you are in Glasgow, I'd highly recommend The Millennium Hotel. 

LIFE OF RILEY

Ash Jalouse Boots





I finally gave in and bought the Ash Jalouse boots in the colour 'Wood Ash' and they really are just the best shoes EVER. 

I remember reading Vivianna Does Makeup's blog a while back now where she raved on about these boots. And WOW, she was telling nothing but the truth! 

These boots are so comfy and so flattering with the little heel. They can add a different spin to any outfit from jeans and a shirt, to tights and a dress. I'm actually really excited to see what outfits I can pair these with in the autumn and winter months! 

They are on the pricier side, but I looked around for a long time, probably a year, to find a good deal on them. I found this last week on FussyNation.comIt was an incredible price reduction, I seriously couldn't believe how good of a price they were! 

I could just look, wear and write about these boots forever basically. So, I'm just going to leave it there and let the pictures do the talking. 

LIFE OF RILEY

MAC Creme Cup, Round 2





I got MAC Creme Cup two years ago for my birthday as a present from my mum and I absolutely loved it! I wore it allllll of the time, basically on a daily basis. But then, I started to buy more MAC lipsticks along the lines of 'Yash' and 'Honeylove' and this led to me forgetting about 'Creme Cup'. 

But, I recently dusted it off and I have completely rekindled my love for this lipstick! It is so creamy and easy to apply, no mirror needed! It's a gorgeous light, but kind of bright pink shade that pairs perfectly with almost every makeup look under the sun. 

It's quickly become one of my go-to lipsticks again. Thank goodness for that!

LIFE OF RILEY

Autumn Staple, The Brown Fedora






Seeing the beautiful dew on the morning grass and hearing the crunch of leaves on the ground are all signs pointing to the beginning of, in my opinion, the best time of the year! 

Autumn. 

Ah, the season of porcelain skin, dark lips and deep nail polishes. It really is the best isn't it? 

I decided that this year, I should add a staple piece to my wardrobe that will be easily wearable and add an autumnal touch to any outfit. 

I chose the good old fedora for this job. 

I bought this one from ASOS for £45 which I think is pretty decent. Yes you can get cheaper ones from Forever 21but none were really ticking the boxes for me so I decided to spend a bit more money on this Christys' hat that I know I'll wear. 

There are so many options for an autumn staple from hats, scarves, gloves, coats. The list goes on and on. So, what will yours be? 

LIFE OF RILEY

Yoga With Adrienne, 30 Day Yoga Challenge




So this year I've made a conscious effort to become healthier in terms of what I eat and also excercising. 

I've never really been a fan of going to a gym, not because I don't want to exercise, but more because I don't want to be a tomato faced sweaty Betty with an audience haha! 

This prompted me to find a new way to keep fit in the privacy of my own living room. I found this in the 'Yoga With Adrienne' YouTube channel. Every Wednesday, Adrienne uploads a brand new yoga video to add to her collection of hundreds of videos! 

There is a fabulous series on this channel called the '30 Day Yoga Challenge' which is for people at all different levels and yoga abilities! The videos can vary from 10 minutes to 40 minutes and the great thing about it is that it's something completely new each day. 

I'm almost finished this 30 Day Challenge and I thought I'd write about it because I think more people should give this a go! Adrienne is so cool and makes you feel right at ease to go at your own pace and she encourages you through every stage just to enjoy it and have fun! It is the best workout I've ever done and I don't think I'll ever stop my yoga mornings now! 

The results are also phenomenal, I'm well on my way to a little four pack! 

LIFE OF RILEY

The Pay Day Haul


Okay, I can't be the only one that loves buying a few things here and there when it gets to their payday and this month I have been especially spendy, who knows why?! So, I thought I would share it here in a post with you! 

Baked Eyeshadow Palette. This is a purchase inspired by 'simply_kenna' because she uses it in all of her makeup tutorials. The shadows are so pigmented and beautiful I just had to jump on the bandwagon.



Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge. I mentioned this in my previous post and I'm really loving it! It gives flawless coverage but it is really lightweight and provides a dewy finish.





Hat. I was inspired by the YouTuber 'simply_kenna' on this purchase and I am so glad I bought it. I pretty much feel like Indianna Jones in it which is an incredibly good feeling haha! I urge you to buy it just for that feeling :)


Moleskine Journal. I had my eye on one of these for a while now and I finally got my hands on one! It is a little gem for writing down my thoughts and ideas as well as scheduling my posts.

Black Lace Dress. This was an item I had sitting in my Amazon wishlist, I know a weird place to get clothes from, but I really liked it as soon as I set my eyes on it and it's now my go-to dress for a night out. It's incredibly flattering. However, I cannot find this dress to take a picture of it to show you! I'm going to end up finding it as soon as this post goes up.  



Black Patent Heels. I bought these to go in accordance with the black lace dress above and I really like this look! These heels give a very polished, chic look. 



Crochet Bikini Top. I was prompted to buy this by my mum because it was a really good price on Amazon and we had just booked a family holiday for next August so when this comes, I'll really only be able to look at it until next year haha! Oh well, I believe they call it 'advanced planning' hahah.



Ankle Boots. I absolutely love the 'Ash Jalouse Boots' but they are on the pricey side, so I thought I'd go on the hunt for a good dupe! I can safely say I found it in these beauties!



Tiger Lily Book. I was on the lookout for a good Autumn read because I really love this season and I always end up reading loads in these colder months. So, I ended up finding this book, which I have not yet read, about the relationship between the infamous Peter Pan and the Princess Tiger Lily before he met Wendy. I thought this sounded like such a unique and beautiful premise for a book, so I will keep you updated on this one. 



Revlon ColourStay Brown Liquid Liner. I purchased this brown liquid liner because I was getting a little bit tired of the stark black liner and decided I would switch it up a bit by using a brown instead.



Avon ColourTrend Brown Eyeliner Pencil. I decided that if I was going to buy a brown liquid liner, I should probably get a kohl liner to go along with it!


Arm Cuff from Boohoo. This was actually a sale item on the Boohoo website that I immediately fell in love with and I thought it would add a really cool detail to my outfits, especially when I go away on holiday next year! 

LIFE OF RILEY

An Advanced Screening Of The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

This is not my photo. All credit to the owner of this photo.

Last night, my cousin and I were lucky enough to snatch up a pair of tickets to go and see a double bill at the cinema. I absolutely ADORE the cinema and so seeing two movies in one night sounded like pure bliss to me. 

The film series we went to see was 'The Maze Runner' and following this first movie, we would get to see an advanced screening of the second movie in the trilogy 'The Scorch Trials'. My cousin had already seen The Maze Runner when it was released last year, unlike me. My cousin, Brooke, assured me that this movie series would be right up my street. She was definitely right with this recommendation. The phrase 'why did I not watch this movie last year??!' came to mind A LOT.

I was hooked within the first five minutes of the first film, no joke. It was really fast paced and I was utterly compelled with the premise of the movie. I was constantly asking who, what, why, when questions. But the movie narrative was really clever because as soon as a question popped into your head, someone asked the same question on screen which was answered.

I feel like it was a really special experience going straight from the first movie into the second, instead of having to wait almost a year! 

The whole experience of going to see a double bill at the cinema was really cool! Our butts weren't even THAT numb by the end of it, so I'd say that in itself is a huge success. Also, the tray of large nachos managed all the way through the first movie and a bag of Galaxy Minstrels got us through the second film.

The first film is about a boy called Thomas, played by the wonderful Dylan O'Brien, who finds himself in a crate going skyward which opens to a bunch of other guys who tell him they have all went through the same process of arriving in this new place, a field surrounded by a ginormous maze, and not knowing how or why they got there. The only thing they can remember is their names. I don't plan on spoiling anything from either of these movies, so I'm just going to leave the quick synopsis there. 

I really loved The Maze Runner, and I seriously loved The Scorch Trials which was unbelievably epic, with a good few jumpy parts which my cousin definitely fell victim to haha! 

I really loved these movies and the whole experience of seeing them both right after one another. Also, the fact that we were at an advance screening was just the cherry on top of a really cool night. 

The Scorch Trials hits cinemas TODAY so go ahead and grab yourself a ticket! If you love action, adventure, thriller movies- you will not be disappointed. 

LIFE OF RILEY

Makeup Brushes I Use Everyday









I'm not one to be really fussy, or hoard, makeup brushes. I just have a few that I swear by and use everyday. 

I use this SoEco Foundation Brush which I picked up from my local supermarket last year and I didn't really expect too much from it, but, it does a brilliant job and lasts really well- even after many washes! 

Very recently I purchases the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge. I'd heard so many good things about this so I just gave in to the hype and bought it from Amazon a few days ago but I found it cheaper on FeelUnique.com. I use this sponge to create a less coverage look than the look you get from using a foundation brush and I really like it so far. I will keep you updated on this one! 

For setting my concealer with some powder, I use this LaRoc Makeup Brush. I got this in a set for my birthday last month which you can buy from Amazon for less than £10! They're really good, soft fiber brushes that I really recommend if you don't fancy spending a lot of money on brushes but still have good quality, durable brushes. This gives such good coverage and makes my dark circles look practically non-existent.  

For contouring, I use the Real Techniques Sculpting Brush. With this one, I need to be careful not to create a strip of bronze along my face because this brush makes this really easy to do. It catches a lot of product in the duo-fibers of the brush and so you can easily use too much. I just remain light-handed and blend, blend, BLEND. If you do this, it works perfectly and looks very subtle and au natural :)

Highlighting is my favourite part of applying my makeup and this brush could possibly be why. I use the Real Techniques Setting Brush to apply my highlighter. It is the ultimate dream team combination with the 'Charlotte Tilbury Bronze & Glow' compact. I love this brush!! 

LIFE OF RILEY

Late Summer, Autumn Jackets









You can create the most perfect outfit, with perfect shoes and perfect makeup. Then, it comes to the big question. What jacket should you wear? Sometimes you can work it out in five seconds, but, other days it can take a while.

So, I thought I would share a few of my go-to late summer/early autumn jackets to ease the early morning pain of deciding on the last part of your outfit.

 I think I've got you covered.

Leather. You can NEVER, maybe not never but rarely haha, go wrong with a black leather jacket. Whether with shorts and a t shirt, jeans and a shirt or a summer dress- it just seems to work. It's a really versatile piece of clothing that is worth saving up for. My jacket is black leather with subtle silver hardware. I got this one form River Island a few years back now, but it has lasted incredibly well and I don't plan on buying another one anytime soon with the way this one is lasting.

Denim. A slouchy blue denim jacket creates a relaxed, laid back look that really exudes the 'cool girl' vibe. The 'I woke up like this' line from the Beyonce song 'Flawless' seems to come to mind here haha! I actually got this jacket from my uncle's old wardrobe from when he was living with my gran and grandad years and years ago. So, it's a bit like a family heirloom! It is by Easy Jeans.  Also, the addition of a white denim jacket in your wardrobe is also a hit. I think of it as the blue denim jacket's polished cousin. I picked mine up from the New Look online sale a couple of months ago and I am sooooo glad I snatched it up. 

Last, but certainly not least on my list is the timeless army jacket. I got mine from New Look a couple of years ago and I have not looked back. I am still obsessed with it and this one is more light-weight so I can wear it in summer on it's own over a t-shirt or I can layer it over a woolly cardigan in the colder months. This is definitely the edgier option of the jackets, but, we all have those days where we want to look a bit more edgy.

LIFE OF RILEY

A Mascara Combo I'm Loving







My sister is an Avon representative and so I always end up looking through the catalogue every couple of weeks and there just ALWAYS seems to be a new mascara in every issue! 

Recently I've enjoyed wearing mascara in combinations. So, I thought I'd quickly share my new favourite combo. 

First of all, I use the Avon SuperShock Mascara in black. This is a great one to lengthen the lashes and separate them giving the illusion you have a million and one lashes. Always a good thing!!

Then, I follow this up with the Avon Big & Daring Volume Mascara in black. This was actually bought by my mum for me because she thought it sounded right up my street. She was definitely right with this. This gives the most beautiful curl and definition to the lashes which perfectly compliments the Supershock mascara's qualities. 

Go on, give it a try.

LIFE OF RILEY

University Edition: Exams, Friends, Coursework and Scheduling

Another week, another Monday so that means my third and final blog post about my first year university experience! 
I thought for this post, I'd just talk about four main topics that I was especially worried about. These four things are exams, friends, coursework and scheduling.

Exams. I suppose going straight to uni from high school was pretty handy in the sense that I was used to end of year exams. However, they are a little bit different. The main difference was that in my first year at uni I was only sitting one exam. It was a written exam, in a gym hall with invigilators. This meant that it was a familiar setting to the exams I'd previously sat. Pretty much the only exception was that I wasn't surrounded by loads of people that I knew. I did have my friend Yasmin by my side though which made things better! Luckily, we both passed that exam. 

Friends. I'm quite a shy person so the thought of being flung into a new environment with a whole lot of new people seemed really daunting to me. But luckily, I had my friend by my side as we are both studying the same course at the same university. However, there are some tutorials and seminars (these are just like lectures, but smaller and with less people where you can ask the tutor questions) where my friend and I were split up so I had a decision to make. Either sit by myself, or go and sit next to someone. I decided to do the latter and thank goodness I did because it really is half the battle. It's as if people are terrified to go near people they don't know in those situations haha! It starts off conversation and then gives you a little study buddy for that seminar. You're sorted! At the end of the day, it doesn't matter whether or not you talk to people at university and make friends, although I would say you should try to make acquaintances. Just remember you aren't there to make a new best friend, you are there to learn! But, you may as well make the most of it!! 

Coursework. My social sciences course was filled with coursework that would make up our final grade at the end of the year. This was compiled with the one end of year exam result that I talked about earlier. My coursework consisted of essays, essays, a couple of multiple choice question tests and more essays! Like I said previously about the exam situation, I felt lucky to have been in the way of writing essays from high school because I saw a lot of people in my classes who were really worried about, and struggled, writing essays. I did question whether or not a high school essay and a university essay would be very different, and the answer to this is no they aren't very different, but you do need to up your game. I feel like the lecturers know this though, and so provide a lot of help on essay writing techniques and give you easy(ish) tasks at first to ease you into it. So, DO NOT panic! I promise you, you'll get there.

Scheduling. By scheduling, I mean time management. This was something I remember talking to my friend Kaitlin about while we wandered around our local shopping centre one night. I was thinking, "How will I manage this? There's university, my job, seeing my family, trying to learn to drive, all the while maintaining some kind of social life!!". That was the problem though. Listing it all like that just made everything seem so much worse than the reality of it all. Instead, I just wrote everything down. Write it all down on a piece of paper and schedule. You can write down what days and times you will be at university, which days you work and then you will actually realise that there IS time leftover for you to fit in an afternoon with you mum or a night out with the girls. It's just a matter of planning and agreeing when you can meet up. After a few weeks, everything will fall into place and you'll manage to find a little routine in your week. 

Thank you very much for reading and I hope you've enjoyed this little university series! I'll probably write up a post about what to wear to university, but that'll probably just be a fashion post :)

LIFE OF RILEY 

Hamlet At The Barbican Theatre

This is, obviously, not my photo. All credit to the owner of this picture. 



I'm pretty sure that I haven't mentioned this before in a post, but I am a massive fan of Benedict Cumberbatch so when I heard that he was going to be performing in a theatre production of 'Hamlet' at The Barbican theate in London, my immediate thought was 'I CANNOT MISS THIS AND I MUST GET TICKETS'. 

However, when I realised how many fans Benedict Cumberbatch would bring to the theatre, not to mention the fact that under 100 tickets would be sold per day at The Barbican theatre's box office, I knew my chances were slim and I could end up queuing for 48 hours (slight exaggeration) and then be told that there weren't any tickets left. 

So, to my delight, it was announced that this production of 'Hamlet' would be screened live, yes LIVE, from The Barbican at selected Showcase cinemas on 15th of October this year at!! I immediately snatched up some tickets for my mum and I and broke the news to her. She was also incredibly happy! 

In addition to loving Benedict Cumberbatch, the actual story of Hamlet is one that I really enjoyed reading so I can't wait to see what this adaptation will bring to the table. 

If you are interested in going to see this too, then have a look on the Showcase Cinema's website here to get your hands on some tickets! 

LIFE OF RILEY

My Moleskine Journal







I recently found the urge to buy a Moleskine planner to manage what I'm doing, keep all of my plans in the one place that is 100% reliable. I previously would keep everything in my phone calendar, notes and reminder section. But phones can break and having a journal keeps everything in one place. 

Moleskine is all about travel, adventure, excitement as well as organisation and all of those elements seem so appealing to me. 

I just purchased my Moleskine from Amazon and it was relatively cheap considering I will get a lot of use out of it! It is just a plain, writing journal, although I originally thought about purchasing the diary. But, then I would have to wait until 2016 to be able to use it and I wasn't really up for that. 

I just prepared my own little diary system in my journal and I also keep lists and reminders too! It comes everywhere with me because you never know when you will get inspiration and need to take some notes down. 

I would highly recommend this. It is of such high quality and looks so beautiful! Even my dog couldn't resist a little sneak peek as you can see in the last photo :)

LIFE OF RILEY 

Subscribe Me Up: My YouTube Subscritption List Update





I can't quite tell whether it's just me, or if everyone feels this way, but it takes a lot for me to press the 'subscribe' button on a person's YouTube channel. 

I'm not subscribed to that many people, if you want to see the list as of right now you can check out this post here, and I quite like it that way! My subscription box always has a couple of new videos each day, but I'm never inundated with videos. That would mean I'd never get anything done hahah :)! 

It always takes a bit of work for me to watch someone new and get used to that person, their channel and what they like to talk about. 

But, today was a first for me. I found a YouTube channel that I instantly clicked with. 

'Simply_kenna' is the channel's name and this came in the recommended section of YouTube for me. I clicked on the video which was about the girl Mckenna's experience with working at Disney. 

I really liked McKenna's personality so I clicked on her channel, noticed she didn't have huuundreds of videos and so I decided to marathon watch them. There is everything from makeup tutorials, DIY videos, how to be positive and fashion look books. It's so interesting and eclectic. I definitely can't wait to watch more from McKenna! 

I also reached out to McKenna on Instagram just to tell her that I really loved her videos. I absolutely did not expect a reply because I imagine she would be inundated with people trying to contact her, but she replied and was so sweet! 

I know that 'simply_kenna' does not need a recommendation from any blog, but I thought I'd mention this channel because I like to talk about things I like and am inspired by and this definitely fits into that category for me. 

LIFE OF RILEY
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