Brief Review: Maybelline Creamy Matte Lipsticks

Hi everyone! My exams are hot on my heels and I feel as if the blog has been feeling a little stale recently, so despite all this stress on the horizon I have decided to take an hour or two just to finally put out some posts that just needed a finished write up and get into this properly and enjoy it.

Today I have a review of the Maybelline Creamy Matte Lipsticks. As far as I know, these launched in the US first with an extensive range, then they launched here in the UK with a far more limited range. They’ve extended the UK Creamy Matte line two times if I have been paying attention properly.

These lipsticks were launched in response to the matte trend – instead of being extreme mattes, these are designed to fall under the comfortable matte category. I am still waiting for Maybelline to launch the shade Touch of Spice in the UK because it looks absolutely divine in the swatches I have seen, but for now I will settle for what I have got and am simply excited to finally try out some of the range.

Maybelline Creamy Matte Lipsticks cost £6.99 each. I picked these up as part of Superdrug’s 3 for 2 deal whilst Mom was repurchasing her favourite blush.

The lipsticks are housed in Maybelline’s classic squarish tubes. Not the most classy, but they do the job. They have a matte casing to match their category and the shade names are in stickers at the base. If you store you lipsticks upright, you might want to store them upside down to show the shade names. If you store them sideways or in a bag, you might find them a little bulky.
I must say I do wish they weren’t so bulky because they don’t fit into my lipstick stand and it makes me sad. Most of my collection consists of liquid lipsticks and pencil types so they fit fine. Rimmel’s Lasting Finish lipsticks and the deluxe minis I have also fit well – even Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvets, despite also being square and bulky, only just manage to fit without a problem. I knew it was too good to be true that I actually had space on the stand…

Clay Crush is from the first extension to the UK range and Brown Sugar is from the second – not that anyone cares about that, right? They’re both nude browns. If you had told me last year I would be wearing lots of nudes I’d have scoffed but here we are.

Clay Crush is a night nude colour in the MAC Velvet Teddy family if you get my drift. Not too peachy or too pink or brown, but just a touch too light for my personal liking (I prefer colours that are noticeable!!).

Brown Sugar is a cool brown tone that can be applied lightly for an effortlessly cool vibe or applied heavily for a more striking outfit.

As you might have noticed, I’ve completely forgotten about arm swatches and colour comparisons but I’ll be sure to update this post sometime after exams with those!

True to their name they are creamy and lovely to wear. They do sink a little into my lip lines but it’s not obvious, and they are more forgiving on flaky areas.


Overall, I really like these lipsticks for everyday wear but I’m not sure I’d buy from this range again – unless they release Touch of Spice.

Have you tried the Creamy Matte range before?

Until next time,

X

 

 

 

 

Review: The Creme Shop Sheet Masks

Since hearing that TK Maxx in the UK had begun to sell K-beauty items, I have made a point of dropping by more often to scour their messy shelves full of open products. You do find gems there occasionally. They’re also fantastic for the odd bit of gorgeous stationary in the notebooks section!

Most recently, I bought two packs of sheet masks from The Creme Shop Fusion Mask line. The Creme Shop are actually a US brand (based in LA) but the masks are made in Korea, which they mention proudly along with the fact that their products are cruelty-free.

The mask multipacks cost £4.99 for a pack of five individual sheet masks, which means each mask is about £1. This is a decent price in my opinion, and its US source is probably the reason why seeing as actual Korean-branded masks are usually sold for £2-3 individually at the same store! Price markups are scary.

Now, here’s a little pointer I have to mention. I noticed soon after purchasing my masks that they had an expiry date in 2016. We are well into the second quarter of 2017 now so that is a little concerning (Although not as bad as some 4-year old mask horror stories I’ve read!) I did patch test the essence just to make sure it wouldn’t immediately burn my face, and during my first use I kept the mask on for less time than I normally would have (twenty minutes as opposed to my usual hour or two) just in case.

I decided to make an exception and not return these masks seeing as sheet masks are individually sealed and my skin is generally unreactive. However, in future, I will definitely be checking for expiry dates and erring on the side of caution as to not buy them.

I don’t think in the UK we have expiry dates on cosmetics, just shelf life recommendations, so I don’t think there are any laws concerning any expiry dates on cosmetics anyway. With the rise of global products in cosmetics and especially the popularity of sheet masks recently, I hope regulations on cosmetics expiry dates and retail are considered soon in the future.

EDIT: From the cardboard packaging I had assumed these were expired, but on the individual mask packets the expiry date is listed as 2019. EH. It really shouldn’t be this misleading.

Without further ado, here are my thoughts on the Fusion Masks! I bought two varieties – the Green Tea and Latte, and the Honey and Lavender.

(Displayed on packaging for both masks)

Fusion Masks – The benefits of 2 masks in 1

The Creme Shop’s fusion sheet mask is designed to deliver the benefits of two masks with just one application.

Directions:

  1. Cleanse and dry skin.
  2. Pull out sheet mask from package and place mask on face. Use the excess essence in packet on neck and parts of face not covered by mask.
  3. Leave mask on for 20-30 min or until dry.
  4. Remove mask. Do not wash off or pat dry. Allow skin to absorb remaining nutrients.
  5. Proceed with routine skin regimen.

For a cooling effect, store your mask in the refrigerator.

Not only is each mask infused with two nutritious ingredients, it is also rich in the ultimate moisturiser: hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic acid’s superpower: Retains moisture. One gram can hold up to six liters of water. When skin lacks moisture, it can become cracked, aged and dull. Hyaluronic acid keeps skin young and perfectly dewy.

One of the first things I noticed was that The Creme Shop really play up the Korean inspiration of their masks. Since sheet masks became the next new thing, we have seen brands from Superdrug and Garnier to Estee Lauder and Charlotte Tilbury bringing out their own variations. I am aware that some brands do manufacture theirs in Korea as well. The Creme Shop is the first brand I have seen put Korean text on their packaging. Honestly, at a glance, I thought it was a proper Korea-based brand and that is what made me check out the products in the first place. Interesting move.

Green Tea and Milk 

Green Tea’s Super Power: Combats age. Antioxidants in green tea create a barrier to protect skin from free radicals while preventing deep, fine wrinkles.

Milk’s Super Power: Smooths out skin for a soft, silky complexion. Proteins and lactic acid in milk nourish the skin and gradually repair skin discolouration.

Ingredients:

Water, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat., Xanthan Gum, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Tricadeth-10, Betaine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Beta-Glucan, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Milk Protein Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Allantoin, Panthenol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance

Compared to the Honey and Lavender, I found this mask to be more pleasant to use. Largely because the smell is less strong and more tolerable, and doesn’t induce the visual of putting straight-up bar soap on my face. Otherwise, the fit was alright. There is a bit of awkward nose shaping but that’s not really new.

There is quite a bit of essence dripping from the mask so I did end up with extra to rub down my neck and arms.

Honey and Lavender

Honey’s Super Power: Filthy rich. Honey is rich in natural sugars and minersla, providing skin with essential nutrients. As a humectant, it traps in moisture to create silky, hydrated skin.

Lavender’s super power: Kills softly. Lavender is known for its therapeutic purposes, but is also effective in combating acne. They key to unblemished skin.

Ingredients:

Water, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat., Xanthan Gum, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Tricadeth-10, Betaine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Beta-Glucan, Lavender Extract, Honey Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Lavender Oil, Allantoin, Panthenol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Disodium EDTA

Okay, when I opened this particular mask, I noticed the bubbles. When I took the mask out, I also noticed the bubble on the eye holes. This being a lavender mask, it totally smelt of lavender soap.

I found it was dripping in essence, and if I had not been erring on the cautious side, I would have used it all. The essence is clear and runny.

The mask fit was decent. As usual, there’s a lot of excess around my chin but the rest of my face fits alright. I should also note that the cotton is standard – thicker than My Beauty Diary, about the same as Etude House. If you’ve tried any sheet mask chances are you’ll be familiar with this type of sheet.

Overall, a decent experience with these masks but I’m not sure I will go out of my way to buy either of these in future!

What have been your beauty finds at TK Maxx recently?

Until next time,

X

 

Review: My Beauty Diary Aloe Vera Sheet Mask

My Beauty Diary sheet masks are routinely praised on the Asian Beauty Subreddit, so I have been wanting to try out some of their masks for a long time. They are a Taiwanese brand also well known for their version of the blackhead-removing peel mask, which was one of the first I had heard of and I dare say helped kick off that trend.

An unlikely opportunity to try the masks arose in the form of Joyce, destashing her masks in her blog sale (Her beauty blog is also a joy to read, so do check her out!). I caved in and bought all the MBD mask she had, plus a backup of my beloved Bourjois Beau Brun lipstick. It came to about 80p per item including delivery costs when I bought them so I think I snagged a good deal there.

My Beauty Diary sheet masks also be purchased online on Amazon, Ebay, and YesStyle. In packs, they come to about £1.10 a mask. Separately, they can go for up to £3 a mask! Therefore, I would recommend waiting for some sort of a deal to arise or just buying a well-priced box with a reputable seller

As usual, these come individually wrapped. Lately, I’ve been very aware that individually wrapped sheet masks lead to a lot of packaging and subsequent waste especially if used daily but, for my veryoccasional masking habits, these are appropriate for me. If I were to ever up the ante to a daily mask, I’d consider trying the Lululun brand who pack 7 masks in one resealable bag.

These come in smaller packets than other masks I have tried. This is nice if you only have one shoe box to stuff 19 masks in (coughmecough)! It also means generally less packaging that goes to waste. However, I guess this is countered by the plastic backing these masks have which need to be peeled off before you can wear the mask. In this case, it turns out to be helpful in getting the mask unfolded as this one is so unusually thin.

This mask has a clear, runny essence. I used to think that Etude House masks had a lot of essence, but My Beauty Diary masks have enough for DAYS. It dripped everywhere. I rubbed it into my arms and legs and even after five minutes of doing this the mask essence was still dripping all over my chest.

Unsurprisingly, I did have an issue with essence dripping into my eyes, which stings a little but doesn’t last forever.

Ingredients

Water, Propylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Hydrolysed Yeast Protein, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Morus Alba Bark Extract, Lemon Extract, Triethanolamine, Kiwi Fruit Extract, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Fruit Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Licorice Root Extract, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Lactate, Citric Acid, Hydroxyethanol Urea, Hydrolysed Jojoba Esters, Polyglutamic Acid, Codium Tomentosum Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Grapefruit Extract, Lecithin, Polysorbate-80, Glyceryl Glucoside, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, iodopropynyl Butyl Carbamate, Fragrance, Sodium Hydroxide, Glycosphingolipids, Tocopherylacetate.

Now, I’m not sure about Taiwanese Ingredient-labelling regulations, but I have noticed that Aloe Juice is on the ingredient lists of all the MBD varieties I have, and in the cases of the Hyaluronic Acid, Mexico Cactus and Apple Polyphenol Varieties, it appears higher on the list then the Aloe mask itself. Curious…

 

Me trying to open my eyes after flooding them in Aloe Vera essence and taking a photo at the same time. 

 

The mask is super thin – much thinner than other masks I have tried, apart from the Muji Compressed sheet masks. I can see the awful state of the skin through it! It clings super well thanks to the sheer amount of essence in the packet. It’s still not the perfect fit for my chin but this is normal with my face shape. It’s a bit small on the forehead side though and I haven’t experienced this kind of problem in fit before.

Overall, I do really like this mask and I am looking forward to trying out the other varieties that I have!

Until next time,

X

First Impressions: Deciem The Ordinary

Hi everyone – I disappeared for a two weeks because I had simply hit a bit of a block when it came to blogging. Shame, as I have managed two posts a week all year so far! I guess it was a bit of a burnout on my end after all of that hard work. As exams are approaching fast, I am reducing my posting to once every week for the time being. Thank you for reading, as always.

Anyway, I am switching it up a little today! Normally I don’t like to do first impressions because I’d rather have a full review up, but I am going to do a few mini-reviews first and put up individual full reviews in a month or so. The opportunity is just too exciting to pass up! I can’t say much about effects on my skin until I finish fully testing, so please anticipate the full reviews!


The Ordinary are a new brand under the parent company Deciem. I bought my products from their official site but you can buy some from ASOS.com as well. It was £4.99 for delivery from the official site but they do offer free delivery for orders over £25+, including the option to add other Deciem brands in a pick n mix fashion. On ASOS’ site, it is £3 or free standard delivery over £20. Next time, I’ll probably order from ASOS to save a few pounds.

Their products are named by their prominent ingredient or function. I think this brand appeals most to people who like their research-supported skincare with active ingredients, and want an affordable source for them. For people who are beginners to skincare, this might be a little intimidating or just plain confusing.


Azelaic Acid 10% Suspension
£5.50 for 30ml

At the moment, I am using this every day – this is the first item on my testing list! I am worried that with daily use this tube will be finished before I can blink.

The suspension has a fairly thick cream texture like a silicone primer type product. It goes on smooth on the skin with a slight mattifying effect and absorbed into my skin quite quickly. Overall, it’s pleasant to use and I have no problem reaching for this daily!

Niacinamide 10% and Zinc 1%
£5 for 30ml (1 fl oz)

This is a lovely thin, scent-less liquid. I’ve heard lots of reports of this pilling but I haven’t experienced much of this yet. However, this is only just being introduced to my routine so I’ll have to see if my opinions of this change over the next month or so.

High-Adherence Silicone Primer
£3.90 for 30ml (1 fl oz) in sealed tube

So far I have only tested this once, and was glad to find out that it did not break me out (I don’t have sensitive skin but I am wary nevertheless). I want to note that it also worked decently with my sunscreen without pilling, which is a plus. I’m looking forward to testing it out some more so I can see properly if it affects the wear of my makeup. It doesn’t feel like a regular silicone primer as it almost feels like a lotion.

So far, my opinions of the brand have been generally favourable. I haven’t had any breakouts just yet, and I am looking forward to observing the results.

Until next time,

X

 

Review: Etude House Drawing Eye Brow #01 Dark Brown

Third in my hypothetical eye makeup series, an eye pencil! I’m calling it a series because, believe it or not, I batch-photographed the photos for my recent reviews all at once… almost two months ago. Then I recently thought to myself ‘huh, I’m sure I already reviewed those things’ when I hadn’t. So I went to dig out the photos and here we are.

I have full brows, so I’m definitely on the good side of the current trends at the moment! But whilst I got away with not doing anything to them for years, I have noticed recently that if I don’t fill them in, they look bare against my full-coverage makeup, which finally spurred me to buy an brow pencil. I’m not shelling out for a pricey brow tool though, so I just ordered this for the price of a bubble tea.

Brand: Etude House, a Korean line famous for cute packaging, cute celeb endorsements, and sheet masks.
Product Name: Drawing Eye Brow
Store: Jolse, a Korea-based webstore. Orders take 2 weeks to arrive to the UK.
Cost:  $3.98 USD (about £3.20)

Packaging: No cardboard box, this comes with a silver stickered seal so you know it’s new. It’s an automatic pencil with an isosceles-ish triangle shape (or maybe it’s scalene) and the mechanism is kinda loose, so I have to do a lot of twirling to bring up the product.

The product itself seems to be hard enough not to break inside the packaging, but at the same time I never wind it out too much anyway. On the other end of the pencil, there is a spoolie thing for brushing your brows out and softening edges if you so wish. I can’t do harsh brows – an Instagram Brow on me would look like Rock Lee from Naruto and I have childhood memories of someone saying I had those brows long before I started doing anything to them!

img_20170312_192512-01.jpeg

Colour:

The pigment on this is really soft, not as intense as an eyeliner, but I’ll be honest, I’d be really intimidated by anything with lots of pigment! This level of pigmentation is fine for filling in the eyebrows. I just fill them in a little and give them some shape – I don’t bother with sharp lines. For what I use it for, this product works well.

I have East Asian, Very-Dark Brown/Not-Black hair and this is possibly a touch too light to match, but I can get away with it because thick brows don’t need that much help. As you might be able to tell by the shade name, Dark Brown, this is their darkest brown in the range and appears rather warm. 

20170212121301_img_1478-02.jpeg

Wear:

It does wear off over the course of the day but not that I notice it very much! I feel fine leaving the pencil at home and forgetting about my brows when I go out. Surprisingly, of the brow products I’ve tried (this one and two I borrowed off my Mom) they all seem to last decently even if I have oily skin. Perhaps my view may change over time as I try out more.

Overall, I do like this eye pencil and how amazingly affordable it is, which I think makes it worth a shot for anybody. I probably will repurchase it, but I’ll also be trying out more brow products in the future so it won’t be the only one I reach for.

Thanks for reading and I hope you found this review helpful!

X

 

Review: BBia Auto Last Gel Pencil Liner in #20 Jazz

Brown eyeliner has been on my radar for a while. Whilst I adore my Clio Kill Black liner, black winged liner is not entirely second nature for me and takes up so much time and effort to do. I used to be that person wearing bold red to the supermarket but now, thankfully, not so much. I don’t go anywhere special these days, so I’ve really been pulling out the more natural looking faces recently – not quite ‘no-makeup’ as I’d like it to be noticed, personally! 

But anyway, for a natural makeup look brown liner is a great alternative to black as it looks less harsh and contrasts less. Even in pen form it looks softer. I’d also heard BBia’s gel eyeliner has some great staying power which was a perfect reason for me to give it a go.

Brand: BBia
Product Name: Auto Last Gel Liner
Store: Jolse, a Korea-based webstore. Orders from them take about two weeks to arrive to me in the UK.
Cost:  $6.78 USD (about £5.50)

Packaging: This comes in a cardboard box that I feel isn’t really necessary. At all.

This comes with a tiny sharpener in the other end,which, the first time I used, just broke off the tip. I presume you’re supposed to use it like a normal sharpener but like??? If it’s going to keep breaking off that’s more product wasted than actually sharpening it. By using the edges to line my eyes, I get a decent thinness of line so I’m not too bothered with a sharp tip. Even if I sharpen it, the tip wore down quickly the first time I used it.

Colour/Pigmentation:

#20 Jazz is a lovely earthy dark brown. It has a slight shimmer that isn’t noticeable, and it takes only one swipe to get a decent amount of pigment. The colour is dark enough to enchance my natural lash line when I tight line my eyes, but unlike a black there is less sharp contrast.

Wear:

This is remarkably like my favourite pen liner, CLIO Kill Black, in the way it wears. It’s soft going on my eyelid, but once it’s ‘dried’ down it’s not budging. It tends to life colour and fade rather than smudge, and at the same time it’s also slightly harder to remove even if my oily eyelids basically act as their own oil cleanser in most cases. Needless to say, I am impressed.

Overall, I love this gel liner and I want to purchase more in their black and burgundy shades. I can imagine these being a total must-have in my makeup bag.

I hope you found this helpful! Thank you for reading.

X

 

The March 2017 Media Editorial

Look, I know a lot of you are here for the beauty reviews but sometimes even I forget it’s only 50% of what I do here. Anyway, I am now in Full Steam Revision Mode (if that is a thing) and the Gap Year Diary is pretty much redundant now I have like, no life outside of that, hence me ditching this title as of now.

I still have things I am enjoying at home, though, which I want to share with you all, and whilst I have very much toned down the number of personal blog posts here since a while back, I know there’s still things I want to share from that bit of my life. This post ended up being super long, though…

Anime: Ghost in The Shell – Stand Alone Complex

Yes, this is the franchise that has now spawned the Hollywood remake starring Scarlett Johannsen, which is coming out soon. It’s stirred a bit of controversy for the decision to cast her as the lead, which I feel really conflicted about. I absolutely hate the fact that I think she suits the role and I could excuse it by saying ‘hey, the Major is a cyborg, her entire body is artificial anyway’. I can sort of go MEH about it this time but this was always going to be something that I wouldn’t support. I just really, really want to see more Eastern faces in Hollywood without all the tropes.

(On another note, there’s going to be a Death Note US Remake whose casting has also been explained away. I expect both adaptations to be FLAWLESS, okay, as both are franchises I adore. The trailer for this Netflix movie came out super recently – have you seen it? What did you think?)

Do I expect good things from the movie? I won’t be watching it in cinemas. Nevertheless, I think it will do well. From seeing the trailer, it looks visually stunning, but it seems the premise of the film takes a different direction to the anime, which I am slightly concerned about. The plot seems to be spun around the Major and her past rather than questions raised from exploring the setting and the idea/use of/manipulations of a cyberbrain, as in the Stand Alone Complex anime and (if I recall correctly) the first movie. I’m not sure how I feel about that, because I really enjoyed the Stand Alone Complex series and the philosophy behind it.

Either way, the original anime movie and series are bloody fantastic and I can genuinely say you are missing out if you dismiss the series no matter how well/not so well this movie does. It has an interesting setting that is really well explored and the soundtrack is also brill. Speaking of which…

Non-Lyrical Music: Yoko Kanno

I don’t often check out anime soundtracks but of the few times that I have, three have been by Yoko Kanno. She doesn’t have a set style but at the same time her ideas are quirky and distinctive which I think really adds to the atmosphere of the anime she composes for. Series include Ghost in the Shell’s Stand Alone Complex series, Terror in Resonance and Darker Than Black Season One.

My personal favourite is the Terror in Resonance soundtrack which is so calm and, like the anime,has a lot of Icelandic influence, but as the GITS-SAC soundtrack is really extensive I will not be surprised if I end up with a new favourite after more listens.

Lyrical Music

(There’s so much to talk about I’ve just hyperlinked everything in this section. Alternatively, here’s a playlist featuring all the videos in this section.)

Fifty Shades sucks but it gets such good promo. I love the sound of the Taylor Swift and Zayn Collab and I just like this dark smexy vibe. (If you like those and also like k-pop, by the way, check out Moon by Jonghyun and I Don’t Wanna Love You by Kim Joon Won and Krystal of f(x).)

In terms of current K-Pop, well, I am really liking:

  • BTS – Spring Day – sad, nostalgic, and not quite a ballad which I like.
  • TWICE – Knock Knock – ridiculously cute, and I love the dance.
  • Gugudan – A Girl Like Me – the debut song they should have had. Stylish and funky.
  • Taeyeon – Cover Up – I always like her more upbeat tracks, and she shows off a different vocal tone I haven’t heard from her before.
  • Debut SNSD/ Girl’s Generation – Into The New World and Girl’s Generation  – ITNW is still making waves even a decade after its release, and I’ve been grooving to this and their self-titled track for a while. ‘Party‘ is much newer but I’m grooving to that, too.
  • Highlight (formerly B2ST) – Plz Don’t Be Sad – B2ST are back and with the sound I missed from them. I’m glad they made their own way, departing from their old label, and I truly wish them all the best. K-Pop groups can suffer a lot and these guys are real survivors.

Manga: Gintama by Hideaki Sorachi

I’m not sure what I was expecting from a manga with a name that contains a punny meaning for ‘silver balls’. I had previously tried reading this before, and it was just too chaotic for me. It’s an incredibly random sit-com set in an alternate earth with samurai and aliens, with a hefty dose of dirty jokes and puns and cultural references. Wasn’t that a mouthful? I would rather recommend Sket Dance, which is quite similar, only more toned down, less rude, and has a high school setting.

If I had read Gintama about eight years ago I would have understood nothing, reference-wise, and even now I don’t get them all, and somehow I just got used to the strange humour. It’s one of those things I’m enjoying but can’t really recommend, haha.

Special shout out to the fans who translate and put up chapters, because so many of the puns are language-based and must be very hard to try localising into English!

What I also noticed was that after over ten years of random stuff happening, Sorachi has blessed the fans with a proper, classic manga arc complete with my favourite character (an underrated side character) dying. Despite the lack of emotion I felt reading through ten years worth of content I realised just how attached I became reading it. Strange, for sure.

There is a live-action movie coming this July with Shun Oguri (Hana Yori Dango and a LOT of other stuff) and Masaki Suda (Kamen Rider W and Assassination Classroom’s Live Action) so fingers crossed it turns out well.

Gaming: Super Smash Bros 4 (3DS)

This game came out two years ago, and I only got my hands on it recently. I usually buy my games preowned so they’re cheaper but this just so happens to be one of those that doesn’t get much of a price decrease, even years after its release. It’s simply a battle game featuring characters from multiple game franchises from Mario to Sonic to the Animal Crossing Villager.

Let me say this now – I suck at games. I suck at this one, too. I play with my CPU opponents on level 4-5 out of a possible 9 and I can’t clear classic mode on level 2.0 (I got to the final battle and lost that). But I also enjoy the hell out of myself playing it and can still get addicted to Smash Run (seriously, it’s so much fun). That said, I used to enjoy playing SSB Brawl on the big TV with my siblings and unfortunately we can’t do that with only one 3DS and one copy of the game, and we don’t have a Wii U.

TV: Clique (BBC3/iPlayer) and Robot Wars (BBC2)

On one hand, we have Clique. I love the fact that it is set in a university as I feel that’s a setting not used often, and there’s definitely a glamorous yet mysterious feel. I can’t quite grasp the characters but I feel like that’s the point so I don’t mind. All in all, the secrets of the Clique are enticing and I’ll probably watch to the end of this six-part drama to find them all out.

On the other hand, Robot Wars is totally my guilty pleasure. I have no engineering genes from Dad but it’s accessible and easy to understand even for clueless people like me, but let’s be honest – I’m mostly there for the robot fights. Sometimes we get a dud episode in which the fights aren’t exciting and the robots have failed to start up or work at full power but most episodes are enjoyable.

That’s all I’ve been enjoying recently! Let me know if you recommend anything!

Lots of love,

X