Sunday, 24 September 2017

QUICK & EASY LEMON DRIZZLE CUPCAKES




It has been way too long since I've been in the kitchen and baked up some tasty treats, I couldn't really be bothered to do something too fancy so I thought I'd bake myself into it easily haha, i'm so bad at jokes! Anyway, how cute are these Lemon Drizzle Cupcakes? 

It's probably one of the easiest cupcakes to make and super tasty too... just keep reading to find out for yourself: 


You will need

250g unsalted butter, softened 
400g caster sugar 
3 eggs
250g self-raising flour 
3 lemons - zest & juice 





To Make 

1. Preheat your oven to 160c / 140c fan / gas mark 3. Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin cases (i used cupcake cases and had too much mixture left) 

2.  Put your softened butter into a mixer and mix on high speed for a good 4 mins until light and fluffy, now add in half of your sugar and mix again until combined 

3. Mix in your flour, eggs, zest of 2 lemons and 1 lemon juice, don't over mix just until all combined. 

4. spoon into your muffin cases evenly and bake for 20 mins, whilst waiting mix your remaining caster sugar with the juice of your other 2 lemons

5. Once out the oven pierce some holes in them with a skewer or fork and drizzle over your sugar / lemon mixture and leave to cool 

6. This is optional but i mixed some icing sugar with water to a thick paste and put this into a piping bag and piped over the top of my cupcakes and decorated it with a little jelly lemon sweet. 


What do you think of these lemon drizzle cupcakes? will you be making them?


Love Gill x 


Tuesday, 12 September 2017

THE PERFECT AUTUMN JACKET





Am I seeing things? No you are not, there is a fashion post on 'Gill McLaughlin' Yes, I know I can hardly believe it myself. If you are new around here, Hey, Welcome! I write about Beauty and Lifestyle with a dash of Baking, not fashion! Why? well because in all honesty I would not do outfit posts, I have zero body confidence. 

Today I am making an exception because I mean just look at that beautiful tan suede biker jacket which screams AUTUMN 

I seen this in New Look about a month ago and have legit thought about it ever since that I knew I just had to bite the bullet and pick it up, so I did. I could not be happier, I have been wearing this with cute tan ankle boots and autumnal blouses teamed with my tan MK bag. I am so ready for you Autumn, come at me!! 

For £39.99 I think it's quite the bargain in comparison to River Island and Topshop where they are more than double the price. They also come in sooo many other shades, I really want the Grey, Wine, Khaki and Blush one too, maybe a bit excessive but I know I will wear this all the time I think I need a back up or two. 

What do you think of this jacket? Yay or Nay? Should I do more fashion posts? Let me know in the comments below x 


Love Gill x 

Sunday, 10 September 2017

INSTAGRAM UNICORN MAKE UP BRUSHES




Can we just take a moment to appreciate the all round prettiness of these brushes?! I mean... if these aren't Instagram worthy I don't know what is. Speaking of Instagram, have you checked mine out? Instagram.com/mrsgmcx no shame! It's getting harder and harder to maintain and gain new followers thanks to the Instagram Algorithm, so let's all follow, like and interact with each other :) 

Anyway, on to these beauts which I found on Amazon, I was searching for a birthday candle for my friend and these popped up as an advert which clearly worked as I bought them straight away, at £13.00 I couldn't resist. The 10 piece synthetic brushes come with an adorable make up brush case in the shape of a diamond which is super reflective. 

Included:

Small round shading brush
Large round shading brush
Fan brush
Angled blush brush 
Angled flat bush 
Round powder brush
Flat contour brush
Small shadow brush
Large shadow brush
Flat shadow brush


I've used the flat angled brush for applying foundation and I wasn't overly keen on it, my foundation was harder to blend and took a lot longer to do so as opposed to a natural hair brush. However, I've used the contour and blush brushes with powder products and really enjoyed using them, they blended out beautifully and were so easy to use. I've only used the eye brushes for basic bronzed eye looks and again these were really nice too. I will need to put them to the test for smokey glittery eye looks and see how they perform. 


Overall they are pretty good for the price and make really nice props for Instagram pictures, I probably wouldn't use them on a daily basis but as a back up they do the job.

Let me know in the comments below what your favourite make up brushes are?


Love Gill x 

Sunday, 3 September 2017

THE BEST AUTUMN EYE PALETTE | NYX Ultimate Palette



Now I know it's not Autumn just yet, oh how I wish it was, I've started re arranging my make up and putting all my autumnal palettes and berry lips to the front of my stash as I will be reaching for these the most. I mentioned in my September To Do List that I was going to re arrange it all and here we are, the autumn make up posts have begun. Can I have a Wahooo?!

The Nyx Ultimate Eye Palette in Warm-Neutral has got to be one of my favourites for Autumn, I mean just look at those burnt oranges, chocolate browns and golden shimmers. Heaven. There are 9 Mattes and 7 shimmers all super pigmented and very easy to blend. This is their 'Pro-Range' which I can't deny as it does perform very well and I would class this is a high end palette, at £16.00 I'd say it is well worth it.




I love that it is a small compact palette which is easy to travel with or even popping in to your handbag for going from a day to night look. One thing this palette doesn't have is a black shade which can be a huge no no for a lot of people but in all honesty I don't mind as I very rarely use blacks and they have a really nice deep brown at the bottom which I'd use instead.

I can see this palette being used on the daily for the next few months and can't wait to play about with it more creating some fun looks. I've already used the burnt orange shades so much already along with wearing autumnal attire - I'm ready for ya Autumn!!





I've swatched a few of my favourite shades above so you can see the pigmentation we are dealing with whaaat. They apply with just as much pigment and blend out beautifully, I sprayed my brush with some setting spray before applying the shimmer as I do with all my palettes to make that shimmer really pop and stay put for longer.


Let me know what your favourite palettes are for autumn in the comments below


Love Gill x 

Saturday, 2 September 2017

SEPTEMBER TO DO LIST



Ok, I am trying to contain my excitement but aaaaaaahhhhhh it's September, which means Autumn is on it's way!!! I love Autumn/Winter, I feel I am more motivated more upbeat and just enjoy life so much more in the A/W. I've seen 'To Do Lists' quite a lot recently and I enjoy reading them so much that I thought I would do one myself as I have quite a few things I want to do this month, albeit it's pretty boring adult life boo.


Eat Healthy & Get Fit 

 every month, every week and every day I say I am going to try to lose weight and it never happens so I'm going to plan on eating healthier and getting fitter. I'm going to take the pressure off and enjoy it a bit more as opposed to being obsessed with a number on the scales. I'm taking part in the Kiltwalk later this month so that will get me into shape a little more and hopefully motivate me to keep it up! 


Plan Ahead 

My whole life needs planned out basically. I just need to get better at the basics like planning my lunches because I spend about £10 a day in work, no joke. This.Has.To.Stop. Rushing about ironing work clothes in the morning, I need to do this at nights or on a Sunday and prep for the week. I also need to plan more blog posts in advance to take the pressure off and schedule tweets etc. 


Switch Up My MakeUp

This is pretty exciting, out goes all some of the pastel pinks and in comes the burnt oranges, deep browns, berry reds for A/W. I looove make up at this time of year, I love wearing dark lips and smokey eyes with winged liner. I have a great eye palette which is going to be perfect for this year - post coming on it soon. Sneak Peak. 




Bake

I mean, if there is any time you are going to bake it's this time of year isn't it?! Bake Off has started which gives me all sorts of ideas and inspo to try something new. The weather also starts to get that little bit colder and darker which means more cups of tea and you can't have one without cake, that would just be darn rude. 


Prepare Fresh New Content 

As most of you will know I took 3 months out of blogging, you can read all about it here but I am back and I need to get preparing and planning some fresh new content. I want to improve on my writing style, photography styles and just freshen everything up a little more. Blogging is a huge passion of mine and I just need to get that passion and love back for it. I hope you enjoy my new posts to come :)


Save Save Save and Save 

As I have said, I spend way too much at work and it's just not worth it. I am also wanting to buy a house soon as I'm still renting so I need to get better at saving. I also need to stop spending on new make up, I always convince myself that I need to have it in my collection but I really need a house more. In all honesty I could save a hella lot I just don't know how to break out of habits. Any hints and tips would be amazing ! 


I've got a lot to do this month! Let me know what your To Do list is for September in the comments below or leave me links to your posts so I can have a nosey :)  



Love Gill x

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

JO MALONE PERFUME DUPE | MANDARIN & BASIL




Something I have always wanted to own in life is a Jo Malone Perfume, because why not?! They are just perfection, the packaging, the scents, just everything. What's stopping me purchasing one of these beauts? The price. At £88.00 for 100ml I just can't bring myself to see that come out my bank account. 

Whilst perusing all the prettiness in Primark I about collapsed when something Jo Malone esk caught my eye, elbows were about coming out to get to the counter to check my eyes weren't deceiving me, this couldn't be a Jo Malone dupe, in Primark? After countless sprays of different scents and scrutinising the life out of them, I found a Jo Malone dupe. I still can't believe it as I type this, best of all for a 100ml bottle it cost me £8.00 that's an £80.00 difference !!! 

Ok so it's not an exact dupe, the Lime is missing but that would be full on copyright if they done that, I tell you what the scents smell the same. To those with super sensitive noses I am sure you will smell some difference, there is an £80 difference after all but for the average person you will not notice a difference. The longevity is pretty decent, I mean it's not Jo Malone standard but it lasted me a pretty good amount of time before I had to have another spritz.

I also bought the hand soap in this scent which was £4.00, a little pricey for some hand soap but considering it's £30.00 from Jo Malone it's a pretty big saving for the same scent. Primark are also stocking 10ml perfumes and diffusers along with hand creams in the classic scents from Jo Malone, I highly recommend you go rush to Primark and pick some of them up. 

Have you tried these yet? What are your thoughts on them? 



Love Gill x 

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

WHERE HAVE I BEEN ?



Wow, this feels strange, stranger than I thought. 

I've been out of the blogging world for about 3 months now and what a long but oh so quick 3 months it has been. What have I been doing ?! In all honesty, working. I found it extremely difficult to balance work and my blog as well as having a social life and it all got on top of me I just threw in the towel. I really wasn't sure I would ever blog again. 

I didn't use Twitter or Instagram throughout either as it would make me super frustrated and at times jealous of all the other bloggers having this wonderful work life balance being able to do it all, and at one point I did do it all but I burnt myself out to the point i had zero passion for it. Now I know not everyone has the 'real' work life balance and they struggle just as much as I did but seeing everything looking perfect just made me feel how much of a failure I had become at my blog.

Truthfully, I miss it. I miss the community, I miss interacting with other bloggers but most importantly I miss being creative and sharing my latest beauty finds or my latest baking recipes. 

I AM BACK! 

I'm not going to put any pressure on myself at the moment but just enjoy it again and gradually work a new routine back in to my life. 

I would love to know in the comments below if you have any struggles and how you overcome them? 



Love Gill x