I'm pleased to finally be reviewing Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare, which is something that I've been meaning to do for quite some time. The reason that I delayed it so much is that I didn't want to rush my review or miss any important details. Now that the time is here, I hope that I'll be able to provide you with an informative and insightful review that inspires you to read this novel, without giving away any important details. 

I've been waiting for Lady Midnight to be released since I finished reading City of Heavenly Fire in 2014, so it's clear that this book has been highly anticipated for me. Already being such a huge Cassandra Clare fan, I had incredibly high expectations for her new series, the Dark Artifices, and hoped that it'd further my love of the shadowhunter world. I can confirm that I was right, as this is probably one of my favourite books by Cassie. It took me on an action-packed journey that filled me with every possible emotion, and so I was constantly eager to read on and find out more. 

About the Author 

Before I continue with my review of Lady Midnight, I'd like to include some information about the author. Cassandra Clare, a.k.a. Judith Rumelt, is an extremely popular author of young adult fantasy novels, particularly her The Mortal Instruments series, which has been adapted into both a popular film and TV show. She has written many books, the majority of which involve the presence of shadowhunters and other typical fantasy creatures, and has also collaborated with other authors such as Holly Black and Sarah Rees Brennan. Below is a list of Cassandra's other shadowhunter novels.

Plot Overview

Cassandra described the Dark Artifices as 'a noir-inspired romantic mystery' and I feel as though this sentence alone is perfect for showing the many aspects and themes included in this book. The main plot is like a detective story, and we follow the shadowhunters as they investigate a series of murders that began with Emma Carstairs' parents. However, alongside this, there is lots of adventure, with the inclusion of fighting demons and working alongside warlocks, romance and your typical fantasy elements, so there's definitely a lot to be expected from this novel!

The Characters

One thing that I'd like to note is that I love how each and every character is detailed and fleshed out, to an extent where everyone would need their own novel just to explore their life in more depth. I never once felt a sense of the main characters being developed whilst others were cardboard cutouts to create dimension, and everyone included had their own thoughts, ideas and motives. It's incredible how much planning and details go into each and every character, even those that only make a brief appearance in the middle of a chapter. 

Honestly, before reading this book I didn't know what to think about the new characters. We were first introduced to the Blackthorns and Emma in City of Heavenly Fire, with Julian only being 12 at the time, and so it was hard to see the potential in their characters when they were so young. With so many drastic events and plot-twists occurring in that novel, these children weren't at the forefront of my mind and I placed a larger focus on the familiar, main characters like Jace and Clary. Also, when I heard about Lady Midnight, I wasn't ready to let the Mortal Instruments characters go and still felt connected to them after 6 books, so I was reluctant to accept the newcomers to the shadowhunter world. Despite all of this, I'm glad that I still read Lady Midnight, as I've grown to absolutely love the new characters and definitely think that they bring a breath of fresh air to the series. I've summarised some of my thoughts about all of the main characters below.

Emma is a fierce and strong-willed leader, being incredibly headstrong and determined in everything she does, whether that's in her training classes or uncovering the truth about her parents. However, underneath this is a layer of vulnerability and at times we can really see her sensitive side, despite often putting on a brave front. I particularly love her more sarcastic and jokey side, but she's definitely a well-rounded character that is the perfect blend of being passionate, humorous and pained. I also like how Emma is a true shadowhunter, unlike Cassandra's previous female leads like Clary and Tessa, who were both new to this world. She has a shadowhunter family, friends, and has known her destiny all her life. This meant that she was much more certain and therefore persistent to reach her goals, and also enabled us to skip the entire 'introduction into the shadowhunter world' stage of the book.

Despite only being 17 years old, Julian has spent many years acting as a parent for all of his younger siblings, due to his father's death in the Dark War and the exile of his older siblings. He's very gentle and caring, which is probably due to having a role of responsibility, but it's clear from the start that his main priority is to hold his family together and fill them with love. Away from his family, we get to experience who Julian actually is: an aspiring artist. This was really enjoyable to read about, and it definitely made the character more rounded and realistic, opposed to one-dimensional. Throughout the novel, we learn about the multiple secrets that Julian has kept from everyone, as well as his little quirks and characteristics that make him a lovable and thoughtful person.

“A gentle boy with a gentle soul, but every soul contains its own opposite, and the opposite of gentleness was ruthlessness—the beautiful wreckage of mercy.”
I didn't know what to expect from Mark throughout the novel and I could never quite predict how he would react to a situation. I felt like his personality was torn in half, with part of him being born and bred a shadowhunter, yet the other being loyal to his faerie roots and the Wild Hunt. He was undeniably the most complex character in the book and I wasn't sure if I liked him at first, but by the end, I really sympathised with him and the deliberating experiences he had. It was also interesting to see how he was changed by the Wild Hunt and became more of an outsider in the shadowhunter community, despite growing up with them. There is definitely a heavy focus on faeries in this book, more than any of Cassandra's other novels, and so it was interesting to meet people such as Kieran, who are in some way similar to Mark yet in others the complete opposite.

The Blackthorn children
I'll be honest, I struggled to keep track of all the different children when I started to read the novel and I was often confused as to who was who, especially with all the characters having nicknames that added to my uncertainty. However, once I became clear of the different Blackthorn children, I really grew to love them and the novel was written in a way that evoked feelings of care and sympathy like they are your own siblings. First, we have Ty and Livvy, who are twins that are virtually inseparable and protective of each other. It was fascinating to see how, despite being loyal and trusting in the entire family, it was only their twin that they could truly be at one with. As a twin myself, I loved seeing these scenes and comparing it to the relationship I have with my brother. We also have Drusilla, who is the perfect example of proving that it's okay to be a different shape and size to others and that looking different is to be embraced. Tavvy, the youngest, shown us that despite being an infant for the story, he was an integral part of the investigation and was needed throughout. I loved seeing all of the little quirks and mannerisms of the children and found it especially delightful to see their love for one another on display.

The final character that I'll be mentioning is Cristina, who isn't a member of the Blackthorn family yet she definitely deserved to be written about. She is Emma's best friend, which was a nice touch to begin with, as the female leads in Cassandra's other books don't tend to have close female friends. Clary and Isabelle, for example, took quite some time to like each other, and Tessa and Jessamine's relationship was far from a friendship. I love how the two characters accompany and compliment one another really well, and it was great to see some mundane moments between them during all of the drama and chaos. Christina is definitely fierce and outgoing, but my only hope is that we get to learn more about her in the next book, as her character has a lot of potential and possibilities to explore.

What I Liked

Something that I thoroughly enjoyed about Lady Midnight was that we were able to jump straight into the story, without having to worry about recapping the basics of the shadow world and shadowhunters in general. With Emma Carstairs being brought up in a shadowhunter family, there was no need to teach her anything new about her world and therefore we could dive into the more complex and undiscovered parts of the world. Also, by this point, most of the readers are aware of the world in which Cassie's books are set, and so it was unnecessary to re-explain it to them. I also find that Lady Midnight is written in a way that means you could read it as a standalone book and not have read any of the companion series', as it's easy to follow and everything you need to know is explained without prior knowledge needed. However, if you have read the other books then you'll definitely have a deeper understanding of the events, families and how everything relates to one another. It's almost as if there is another layer to the stories, with many little nods and references to the other books being apparent, whereas you'd otherwise miss them.

I also loved how this book explored other areas of the world that we were otherwise unfamiliar with, and it really developed the lore and mythology that we'd previously seen in the other books. An example of this is how we saw a lot more magic in use, and we also learned about dark magic, which we didn't get to see much about in the other books. We also saw a lot more of the Fey, as faeries played a huge part in the plot and it was therefore important to develop on them. In previous books, we only really saw the Seelie Court, but in Lady Midnight many new aspects were introduced, such as the Wild Hunt, the Unseelie Court and the Cold Peace, which really helped to understand the book and was also very interesting.

What I'd Change

I like to talk about what I'd change in all of my book reviews, as no book can ever be perfect and there are always improvements to be made. However, I really struggled to find changes to make to Lady Midnight, and to me, it was very close to being perfect. One thing that I did find, however, was that the pace could be quite slow at times, especially at the start when the plot hadn't really begun yet. Despite this, as soon as the book gathered pace, I found that it raced by and I honestly couldn't put it down.


Arguably the main theme of Lady Midnight is love, yet don't let this fool you into thinking that it's just another romantic love story. Both philia and agape are explored throughout, whether it's through the love between friends, family, parabatai or more lustful relationships. You can definitely get a sense for this as you read the book and the love that is shown varies tremendously depending on the characters and circumstances. I really liked the inclusion of these different types of love, as most YA books tend to just focus on a romantic relationship and nothing else.

If you know Cassandra Clare, you'll understand that she loves a good forbidden love and will include one whenever it's possible. Well, Lady Midnight is no exception, with the two main characters starting to slowly fall in love with one another, despite the law not allowing it. (This is not a spoiler, as it's been on Cassandra's website for a long time and it's included in the blurb of the book). The relationship between parabatai is definitely a unique one and we saw in previous books that it was something special, so I was thrilled to see how it was explored further. The relationship between these two characters is definitely complicated and there's a lot stacked against them, but it's definitely great to see how it progresses throughout the book and it definitely isn't your conventional love story.

“You'll fix me, because we're parabatai. We're forever.”

The Dark Artifices also deals with non-conventional shadowhunters, such as neuroatypical and LGBT+ characters, which is definitely different from most other YA books that don't include these people, despite them being very common in our world. I think that the inclusion of such characters really sends out a positive message to all of Cassandra's fans and these people definitely play an important role in the books.

One of the characters that we see who fits this description is Ty, who has an autism spectrum disorder. It was really interesting to see his view on the events and the shadow world in general, and I loved how Cassandra went against the norm and included such a character, which is especially unusual for a fantasy novel. When asked about Ty, Cassie said: 

“I wanted to make it clear that he was just as intelligent and skilled, and just as worthy and capable of love, respect and admiration as his neurotypical peers, when he is struggling and when he is not, and I hope you will like him.”

The Writing

It's clear from this novel that Cassandra's writing skills have immensely improved, and she's transformed from an amazing writer to an absolutely phenomenal one. Everything from her character development to her world building has developed and became much more detailed, and I'm proud to say that I've witnessed this change from when she wrote City of Bones to now. There's no denying that she's a talented author and I love how she has the ability to make me laugh hysterically, feel warm and fuzzy inside, and uncontrollably cry all in the same chapter. If you'd like to see an example of Cassandra's writing, I've included the first page below, which will also hopefully persuade you to try this book!

Overall, Lady Midnight is a truly beautiful book which will grab you at the very start and enthral you throughout. I honestly loved every single second of it and couldn't put it down, always eager to find out what happened next. I'd highly recommend reading the Mortal Instruments series before this one, as Lady Midnight directly leads on from where this one ended, and reading the Infernal Devices series will also provide you with some extra knowledge of shadowhunters and the different families. I honestly couldn't recommend this book and I'd urge you read it, as I can guarantee it has something for everyone. If you'd like to buy this book then you can do so here!

Thank you so much for reading this post and hopefully, you enjoyed it. I'd love to know what book you want me to review next, so make sure you let me know down in the comments.

Love from Daisy x

I love new makeup products and this one was no exception, as I was eagerly awaiting this product to be launched in the UK. Cushion foundations have been released by many high-end brands over the past couple of months and I couldn't wait to see a drugstore version land in the UK. L'Oreal were the first to jump on this trend and I knew that I had to get it and review it as soon as possible. I thought I'd also include some of their other new releases in with this post, so I hope you like hearing what L'Oreal has in store for you makeup-wise!

Nude Magique Cushion Foundation

This product is essentially a compact containing a sponge drenched in liquid foundation, which is a concept that many beauty brands have tried out and L’Oréal have been quick to jump on the bandwagon. It comes in seven different shades, but the names of these aren’t actually on the packaging but a removable sticker, so you may forget which one you have after using it for a while. This foundation is also enriched with SPF 25, making it particularly great for summer when you need to protect your skin. 

The packaging of this product is really cute and I love the purple metallic casing, which matches the rest of L’Oréal’s nude magique range. The compact itself isn’t too large, meaning it’s great for tossing into your handbag for on-the-go applications. There is also a reasonably sized mirror, which adds to the travel-friendly aspect of this foundation cushion.

This foundation definitely provides a sheer coverage, so it’s perfect for if you want a lightweight formula that gives a skin-like finish. It’s definitely glowing and dewy on the skin, so you may consider using a powder if you have oily skin. You can definitely build up this foundation to achieve more coverage, but I feel as though it won’t be enough if you have a lot of redness or blemishes to cover. Blendability isn’t an issue with this product and I feel as though you can easily manipulate it on your skin, and it also blends really seamlessly to a point where it’s hard to tell that you even have product on your skin.

My only criticism with this product is that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of foundation inside it, and so it probably doesn’t last as long as a bottle of foundation. Also, the lid doesn’t always close properly, which can cause it to dry up much sooner than expected and make it much harder to get a decent amount of foundation onto your brush, so I’d definitely be careful when closing it.

If you want to buy this product from Boots, you can do so by clicking here.

Glam Bronze Cushion De Soleil

Alongside the launch of the Nude Magique Cushion Foundation was this product, which is the same in appearance and design, but is instead a bronzer. Since they both have very similar formulas, these products are very complimentary to one another and look lovely when worn together, although using them separately also creates a gorgeous look. I find that this bronzer is ideal for adding warmth to the skin and enhancing your tan, making it perfect for when you return from holiday and your bronzed skin starts to fade.

The packaging of this product, like the foundation, is very travel-friendly and functional, with different layers for holding the applicator sponge and actual foundation. This means that no extra brushes or mirrors are needed, and just this one small product can be used to easily apply your bronzer. I especially like the bronze and copper shades of the packaging, making it perfect for the summer and it’s initially clear that this product is a bronzer.

The liquid feel that this bronzer has makes it really easy to apply and control. It glides onto the skin with ease and has an even finish, being not at all patchy or difficult to blend in places. With this product, it’s easy to control how much product you get on your brush, depending on how many times you tap the sponge, meaning you can decide whether you want a subtle glow or a full-on bronzed look. After buffing it out, this bronzer looks beautiful on the skin and it’s warm tone definitely makes it appear like you’re actually tanned.

Click this link to purchase this product from Boots!

Nude Magique BB Cream

This product isn’t technically a new launch, but it has been repackaged and with that, a new formula has also been brought into place. This is definitely a unique product, as it contains micro-pigments that adapt and so the BB cream will adjust to your skin tone. It starts as a white cream but quickly changes colour upon blending, which is crazy as it seems to perfectly match your skin.

This BB cream boasts its 5 in 1 formula, which includes providing a flawless yet light coverage, enhancing your complexion, hydrating your skin throughout the day, evening your skin tone and providing SPF 12. These are definitely some large claims and it’ll be interesting to see how true they are as I test this product some more. I definitely want to use this BB cream more before I give you some more in-depth thoughts, but so far I’m impressed with it.

If you want to buy this product, then simply click the link here.

As you can see from the swatches above, all of the products have an intense amount of pigmentation, but they also blend really well, meaning it's easy to create a personalised look.

I'd highly advise you buy these products, and there's actually a 3 for 2 offer on all L'Oreal products happening right now at Boots. Why not buy these three items and let me know what you think of them? Links to each individual product are above.

I really enjoyed giving you my thoughts and first impressions on these products, but I want to know what you thought of them! I'd love to hear what you had to say down in the comments, as it'd definitely be interesting to see if you found these products any different than I did. Thank you very much for reading this post and I'll be back as usual next Sunday with a new one, so I'll see you then!

Love from Daisy x

Despite being a huge lover of reading, there are quite a few popular YA books that I simply haven't had the chance to read yet. As someone who loves to find underrated authors and bring attention to unknown yet amazing books, I often don't get the chance to read the books that everyone else is going crazy for. With summer quickly approaching and thus an increased amount of time to read, I thought that I'd take the opportunity to read some incredibly popular books that I've been eagerly awaiting to get my hands on. To see what they are and find out my initial thoughts, you'll have to keep reading!

 Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but when it's as beautiful as this you can just tell that it'll be an outstanding book!

A net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. Mortmain plans to use his Infernal Devices, an army of pitiless automatons, to destroy the Shadowhunters. He needs one last item to complete his plan: Tessa Gray. Charlotte Branwell, head of the London Institute, is desperate to find Mortmain before he strikes. But when Tessa is abducted, the boys who lay equal claim to her heart, Jem and Will, will do anything to save her. For though Tessa and Jem are now engaged, Will is as much in love with her as ever. As those who love Tessa rally to rescue her from Mortmain’s clutches, Tessa realises that the only person who can save her is herself. But can a single girl, even one who can command the power of angels, face down an entire army?

It's no secret that I absolutely love Cassandra Clare's books, and with only one of her released shadowhunter books left for me to read I knew that I had to get around to it soon. I completed the previous books in the Infernal Devices series, Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince, earlier in the year and have been dying to finish the trilogy ever since. This series is filled with everything you could ever want: drama, romance, action, fantasy and so much more, meaning it can definitely be suited to anyone. There were some major cliffhangers and unresolved story arcs at the end of the previous book and I simply can't wait much longer to find out what happens, so I'll definitely be reading this book soon. Below is a sneak-peek at the first page, so why not have a read and see what you think?

 Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves, assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats them in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted freedom. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who understands her best. Then one of the other contestants turns up dead, quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

For me, you can always tell that a fantasy book will be detailed and enticing when the author has included a map. And hopefully, this is an indication of some thorough worldbuilding in the 'Throne of Glass universe'.

This book is probably one of the most popular YA books at the moment, with virtually everyone singing its praises. After hearing nothing but positive remarks and countless BookTubers leaving stellar reviews, I knew that I had to read this book, and as soon as possible! It's been a while since I've delved into a rich, high-fantasy novel and this one definitely sounds unique in its concept and storyline, so I'm eager to see how I find it. From what I initially perceive, this book is imaginative and creative in its devices, as well as being true to the fantasy genre, unlike a lot of popular dystopian fantasy hybrids that are popular now. Although I wouldn't usually pick up a book about assassins and warriors, there's definitely something about this one which makes it different and it really appeals to me. I'm incredibly excited to get started on this one, so I'll definitely make sure to keep you updated on how it goes. If you'd like to have a read of the first page then look no further than below.

 Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Gwyneth Shepherd's sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth, who in the middle of class takes a sudden spin to a different era! Gwyneth must now unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon - the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential. Together, Gwyneth and Gideon journey through time to discover who, in the 18th century and in contemporary London, they can trust.

This is probably one of the lesser-known books on the list, being incredibly popular with the people who've read it yet a hidden gem for many others. As soon as I heard Regan from PeruseProject mention this book, I was sold and knew that I wanted to read it whenever possible. Although it took a while to track it down in my local library, I've finally found this book and I simply can't wait to read it. I realised not long ago that all of the books I read are fairly similar and I really wanted to try something different, and this book seemed like the perfect fit. It's been a long time since I've read any historical fiction, despite loving the genre as a whole, and I've actually never read anything about the 18th century, so I'm really eager to learn more about this era whilst enjoying the story. The science fiction and mystery elements of this book also really appealed to me, and it sounds like an all-round compelling read that is definitely like nothing else I've tried before.

 All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him. Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death. When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.

I'm absolutely in love with the design and cover art for this book; it's definitely unique yet also hints at the solemn aspects of the novel.

The young adult book world has been non-stop talking about this novel, with everyone comparing Jennifer Niven to the newest John Green or Rainbow Rowell. With claims like that alone, I knew that I wanted to read this book and see if it lives up to the hype. One of the main themes in All The Bright Places is mental health and death seems like it will be a common occurrence, which may seem like a morbid choice for a summer read. However, I feel as though this book will be touching and definitely open my eyes to how many people may feel at some point in their lives. For a YA book, I'm surprised that such deep topics are being covered, opposed to others that shy away from anything along these lines, so I'm definitely interested to see how it is portrayed through literature. A preview of the first page is shown below, which I'd recommend reading if you're interested in this book.

I'll definitely be reading all of these books during the summer, as well as some others dotted here and there, so I'll make sure to start reviewing all of them for you with my final thoughts and questions. However, if you want to know my thoughts as I'm reading or even talk to me about them, make sure to check out my Twitter for any updates and book chats. Furthermore, I'd love to start using Goodreads to hold group discussions about books, so if you think that's a good idea and would like to be involved then let me know either in the comments or on social media, and I'll see what I can do! Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post and I'll see you next Sunday as usual with my newest blog post.

Love from Daisy x

I'm always on the look-out for some budget friendly makeup and I honestly can't turn down a bargain, so when I discovered the makeup brand Freedom was sold in my local Superdrug, I had to give it a try. Not long after picking up a couple of their products, the brand was actually kind enough to surprise me by sending me even more Freedom makeup, which was completely unexpected yet I'm very grateful for. I've now accumulated a small selection of their products to try, so I thought I'd do a first impressions and mini-review post about each one that I own.

Audacious Mattes 12 Eyeshadow Palette
This palette comprises of solely matte eyeshadows like the name suggests, and I honestly feel as though it has filled a gap in my makeup collection. These beautiful yet shimmer-less eyeshadows can be used in a variety of ways to create stunning looks, whether you want something more on the natural side or a much bolder alternative. I often feel as though I'm lacking in matte eyeshadows but this palette completely solved this issue, providing a variety of shades that are all I could ever need. I think that this allows for a great deal of versatility and makes this palette an essential for any look that you want to create. Despite being a budget palette, I was surprised by how the powders are creamy and insanely pigmented, feeling much more luxurious than the £4 price tag would suggest. Each one applies evenly and can be blended out to provide a gorgeous shadow across the lid. I've definitely been loving these so far and my first impressions are nothing but positive.

As you can see from these swatches, the pigmentation of these shadows is insane and definitely not what I was expecting. I was particularly blown away by the paler eyeshadows, which are usually faint and powdery when they come from the drugstore, yet it seems like Freedom have really mastered their eyeshadow formulations!

Pro Contour in Medium 2 *
I was initially sceptical with this product as I was sent quite a dark shade, despite being relatively pale myself, yet I've actually enjoyed using these two powders. They aren't nearly as dark as I expected, meaning I can use them to create a bold yet beautiful look on the skin. The leftmost one is actually a gorgeous shade that compliments my complexion well, and so I find myself regularly reaching for it. The other powder is considerably darker and so I use it sparingly, although it still creates a lovely look once on the skin and will be particularly gorgeous when I have a tan. Despite being branded as for contouring, I find that the warmer tone in these powders makes them more suited to bronzing the skin, but they're lovely regardless of this. They're very pigmented but I sometimes find that they aren't the easiest to blend out, although this could be due to any makeup underneath and not this product itself. Like with all bronzers, I also recommend using these as eyeshadows for equally gorgeous looks, so if you find that the shades don't best suit you then there's always another option.

From the above swatches, it's clear that both bronzers are greatly pigmented and a lovely colour, although they're both far from my natural skin tone. However, I've still loved experimenting with these and they look much more natural when blended into the skin and applied with a light hand.

Pro Studio Strobe Cream *
This product claims to provide the 'most subtle and natural illumination and highlight for the skin', so I was definitely excited to try it out. Summer is the perfect time to add more dewiness to your makeup and creating a radiant, almost 'lit from within' look, and this product sounded like it was perfect for the job. The strobing cream is quite thin, meaning it doesn't feel heavy or cakey on the skin, and I also find that it doesn't feel greasy, so this may be the perfect product for people with oily skin. It's really soft and blends smoothly into the skin, providing an even layer of the product across your face. This strobing cream is definitely quite shimmery when applied in very large amounts, so I'd recommend only applying it to the target areas opposed to all over the face. Freedom also states that this product can be used both under and over makeup, so it'd be interesting to see how the finished look varied depending on this. I'm definitely looking forward to trying this product some more and I'll make sure to report back to you with a full review in the future.

From this swatch, you can see how the cream first appears to be an opaque white and lacking any glow, but don't worry as the colour fades and the glow appears once you blend it out. It's hard to tell on camera but I actually had some of this cream blended out by my wrist, with the fact that it's barely showing up proving that this glow is more of a natural one.

Pro Melts Lipgloss in Masterpiece *
This is a new shade in the range and a beautiful one at that, being a vibrant, almost fluorescent pink that is perfect for creating a statement lip. First of all, if you buy any of the Freedom liquid lipsticks I'd be careful as this product has a tendency to leak, which is probably down to the cost-efficient packaging not being the most effective and the runny formula. Despite this, I think it is a wonderful product and is definitely an intense liquid lipstick. The pigmentation is indescribable, with this product having more colour payoff than I've ever seen from a lip product before, and even just one coat provides an opaque layer of product on the lips. True to its form, this liquid lipstick dries in a few seconds and then becomes very matte, not budging for the entire day, making it a very long-wearing option. I'd say that this is probably too bold for me and is definitely out of my comfort zone, but if you love wearing a more daring choice then this product will definitely be for you!

Pro Glow Meow Bronzer
I think I've saved the best 'til last with this haul since I've absolutely fallen in love with this product and it's now a firm staple in my makeup bag. When swirling the different shades together, a lovely bronzed nude colour is created, which is perfect for adding warmth and dimension to the skin, yet the addition of shimmer also brings light and a glow to the face. It's impossible to go overboard with this product and even just the slightest of it can really transform your look and make a huge difference. I also love how you can pick out each individual shade to use as your bronzer, blusher and highlighter, all of which look lovely and are conveniently stored in this cute and compact product. I honestly struggle to critique this product and I've adored using it practically every day, so if you're looking for a beautiful, multi-purpose face product then look no further.

The swatches above show what the outcome is when all three shades are swirled together, which is a beautiful and quite natural bronzer shade that gives the skin a glowing, radiant appearance. Next to this are swatches of each individual colour, and as you can see the pigmentation is insane and they all compliment one another nicely.

I hope you liked hearing my first impressions of these products and hopefully you have been persuaded to try some of them out. If you'd like to know more about any product in particular then let me know, and I can produce a full review once I've tried them more. Thanks for reading this blog post and for the continued support, as it's greatly appreciated. Have a nice week and I'll see you again next weekend with a new post!

Love from Daisy, x

All products marked with an asterisk (*) have been sent to me for review, yet all opinions are completely my own and not influenced by the brand in any way.

I often feel as though my blog is very focused on specific topics like beauty and books, meaning there isn't much room to talk about my general, everyday life. I've had many things going on, yet I sometimes think that it's hard for them to fit into my niche and I don't want to bore my readers with unrelated content. However, today I thought that I'd break the mould and do a bit of a life update post, sharing some of the things happening right now. I hope that this can become a regular thing on my blog, as these more informal posts are both enjoyable to write and help my readers to learn more about me.

Finishing My GCSEs
I can't believe that this moment has finally arrived, but I've actually finished my GCSEs. After what feels like a lifetime of revision and studying, I'm now free for the summer with no more exams to revise for. My exams lasted for over a month, which initially seemed like forever but it was actually more manageable than I perceived. For all of you wondering, they went very well and I feel as though I'll be pleased regardless of my results, as I put in an incredible amount of effort in preparation. Now that my tests are all finished, it's time to enjoy the summer.

Leaving Secondary School and Starting College
With finishing my GCSEs comes an end to secondary school, which I was actually really sad about. I became really comfortable in my school over the five years and made many memories and friendships that will be with me for life. It's crazy to think that the time has passed already and starting secondary school as a nervous yet ambitious eleven year old seems like it was only yesterday. High school was definitely filled with its ups and downs, but ultimately an experience that I'll treasure.

Although I found it quite sad to leave my school and didn't want it to come to an end, at the same time I feel completely ready to start a new chapter in my life and attend college. I'm looking forward to refining my subject choices and branching out into new subjects, friendships and activities. For those of you wondering, I haven't finalised my subject choices and my mind may change many times, but I'm thinking about taking A-Levels in English Literature, English Language and Psychology, with a writing-based career being my ultimate goal.

Attending Prom
Prom was the perfect way to end a successful five years in secondary school and it was definitely a memorable and momentous occasion. Spending the day being pampered and feeling like a princess was an absolute dream and definitely added to the special feeling. The first step was having acrylic nails, which was a first for me yet I fell in love with them. I went for a pinkish nude base with some glitter ombred through, which created a neutral yet equally glamorous look. I also had a spray tan, hair and makeup all done by my mum, which I was incredibly pleased with and I absolutely adored the look she created. I feel as though I looked completely different to my usual tired and natural appearance, yet at the same time, she managed to create something that perfectly captured who I was.

My dress was the star of the show and I'd been undeniably in love with it since I first tried it on all the way back in January. People often say that the first dress you try will be your favourite, and this was no exception to the rule as I knew it was the one I wanted almost straight away. My dress was strapless with a sweetheart neckline, going down into a fishtail dress. I feel as though this style was really flattering and definitely added more interest and shape to the dress. The entirety of the blush coloured dress was adorned with lace and jewels, which simply added to its beauty and really made it glimmer and look gorgeous. The cut-out sections in the bodice were also a unique feature and allowed my tan to show through, thus making the dress stand out even more.

The actual night of prom was absolutely amazing and one that I thoroughly enjoyed. We started by meeting in school and then being taken to the venue for the evening, which was lovely and definitely a great place to hold our prom. After taking numerous photos and eating a delicious two-course meal that pleasantly surprised me, we were free for the rest of the night to dance, sing and chat to friends for what might be one of the last times. The night was incredible and had a buzzing atmosphere throughout, with everyone being ecstatic that we were finally at prom, yet everything still felt surreal. Although my feet were aching by the end from all the dancing and my throat is still sore from the singing, I had the best time at prom and it's a night that I'll always remember.

Annual Showcase and First Dance Competition
It's now officially July, so if you've been reading my blog for a while then you'll know that this is the month where I have my annual Lipa show. This is where myself, along with the rest of the students, all gather in our local theatre to perform dances, songs and acting scenes. I love performing and being on stage is a huge reward after a year of hard work, so these annual shows are often a highlight of my year. Although show day can be chaotic and a lot of hard work, it's definitely worth it to be doing what I enjoy with some of my closest friends. Furthermore, I feel as though this year is one of my favourite shows and I'm in love with all of the pieces. As you're reading this, the show is actually tomorrow evening, so fingers crossed it goes well!

Another exciting occasion is that I have my first ever dance competition the day you're reading this. Although I've been dancing for years now and at Lipa for almost six years, this is the first dance competition that we'll be attending and I'm absolutely over the moon! We aren't taking a huge amount of routines since it is our first time competing, but I do have a jazz group, a contemporary group and a lyrical trio which me and two of my close friends choreographed ourselves. I'm really excited to perform our routines and also get the chance to see many other amazing dance schools compete, and I can guarantee that the day will be a memorable one.

New Bedroom
The final thing that I want to mention is that I've just moved into my new bedroom. After having our loft converted, my entire family has decided to move rooms so that we all have a fresh change and appreciate the new start. My new room, which previously belonged to my mum, was recently decorated and so it looks absolutely lovely. It definitely has a more grown up feel than my previous bedroom and the style of the interior perfectly captures me and suits my tastes. There's also plenty of space for dancing, which is a necessity for me and I'm constantly making the most of this. If you'd like to see more of it then I could always make a room tour for you sometime in the future, so let me know if that's something you'd like to see.

I hope you enjoyed getting this update and hearing about aspects of my life that I don't often share on my blog. Now that you've seen what I've been doing recently, I'd love for you to share what you've been up to down in the comments. Thanks for reading this post and I'll see you next Sunday with my new one!

Love from Daisy x