A number of my book-related blog posts tend to be reviews, which can be really helpful if someone is considering reading a book yet wants to know more beforehand. However, I understand that some people may have no idea where to even start looking, either because they don't read often or simply don't know what type of books are on offer for them. For this reason, I decided to start up a new series on my blog entitled 'Daisy Recommends', where I will share with you some of my favourite books from a specific genre and hopefully open your eyes to the many titles out there. I hope that this is useful if you're struggling to find a new book to read, and since I'll only choose what I think are the best books, it's probable that you too will enjoy them. Today the focus will be on young adult contemporary novels, so if that's a genre that you fancy then keep reading.

I've always had a love-hate relationship with contemporary novels, but quite recently I've been really enjoying them and found that these easy-reads are both enjoyable and enthralling without being too complex. There's a wide range of novels available within this genre, covering many different themes and events, so it can often be daunting where to start looking. However, this also means that there's pretty much something on offer for everyone, so I'm certain that I'll be able to find a contemporary novel that's perfectly suited to you.

Did I Mention I Love You by Estelle Maskame - After being sent this book by Black and White Publishing, I absolutely fell in love with the entire concept, from the storyline to the characters and everything in between. It's incredibly easy to get into this book and become invested in the events, and before you know it you'll be addicted. However, this book is also insightful and covers a lot of different issues and dilemmas that are frequent in the lives of teenagers. All of the characters are realistic and you can tell that Estelle put a lot of effort into creating such a beautiful series. If you're looking for an adventurous, lovable novel that's full of romance and drama then this will be perfect for you. I actually wrote a review of Did I Mention I Love You in a lot more detail, so I'd urge you to check that out for more information.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky - Written in the form of letters throughout, this book is incredibly unique yet relatable at the same time. It's beautifully written and is powerful, conveying many important themes and messages that aren't usually referred to. The main character Charlie's life is filled with defining moments, lessons to learn from and a whole load of subtle hints towards the truth, making this book an interesting one to read. It's certainly a broad book, featuring some humour yet also some intensely emotional moments, but ultimately being an eye-opener that is worth reading. This coming-of-age epistolary novel is definitely aimed towards those of you who are a bit older and are wanting something mature, emotional and humorous all wrapped together.

Looking For Alaska by John Green - John Green is renowned for writing excellent books and this book is no exception, probably being my favourite out of all of his novels. This has a really informal yet poignant feel to it, whilst being obviously emotional like all John Green books. As a contemporary novel, it covers everyday issues and struggles that average American teenagers may face, along with some more heartbreaking and upsetting themes. The story is written beautifully throughout and, coupled with lovable characters and consistent messages, I easily fell in love with this book. I'm aware that John Green books are part of a trend that passed a few years ago, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try this book, as it's very promising and lives up to expectations.

Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard - I'm sure that most people have heard of this insanely popular TV series (and probably theorised about who A could be for hours on end), yet what quite a few people don't realise is that the concept is based on a book series. Despite only reading the first book, I fell in love with how real everything feels, unlike an artificial world that the author had created, and it wasn't difficult to enjoy it. This book has a perfect blend of many genres, with mystery and romance playing large parts in the contemporary-based novel, which adds to the reasons why I loved it. And for those of you who think you could never read it after finding out what happens on TV, a lot of the storyline is completely different and there are many original ideas that will leave you incredibly shocked.

Summer Days and Summer Nights by Stephanie Perkins - I thought I'd include this book as an extra, as it's one that I haven't read yet but I'm almost certain that I'll love it. This book contains twelve short stories, all of which are contemporary romances that are perfect for this summer. There are some extremely popular and talented authors included in this collection, such as Cassandra Clare, Veronica Roth, Libba Bray and Leigh Bardugo just to name a few. From what I've heard, all of the stories are diverse, creative and feature a mixture of emotions, meaning there's definitely something for everyone included. I'm incredibly thankful that Pan Macmillan sent me this book and I can't wait to read it, so I'll have to update you with a review soon!

I hope that this post was useful for you and if there are any amazing contemporary novels that you think I've left out then I'd love to know down in the comments, as I also like receiving recommendations. Thanks for reading and if you have any particular genres that you'd like to see recommendations for in the future then make sure to let me know.

Love from Daisy x

It's often hard to stay focused and concentrate on the task at hand, especially when large projects and assignments can seem too difficult to even attempt. This inevitably leads to procrastination and doing counterproducitve things with your time, but I want to help you to avoid this. Regardless of how big or small your goals are, I want to share with you some of my best tips for getting them done and being successful. These are five easy and managable steps that may seem like nothing, yet putting them into practice will make a guaranteed improvement.

Large tasks and assignments can seem really daunting and impossible to start, which often causes you to give up before you even begin. This can make it really difficult to accomplish your goals and be productive, as the task at hand is too overwhelming to even think about. I'd definitely recommend breaking down all of your tasks into smaller, more manageable sections. It's a lot easier to start a small portion of your task and it's a step in the right direction. Also, once you've started you've done the hardest part and you'll find it much easier to be productive after taking the initial step.

When you've got a lot to do and the amount of tasks that you have seems endless, the best thing to do is organise your mind and make plenty of lists. This really helps me to see what I need to do and feel like I'm under control of my workload. You can also use this to prioritise your tasks and decide which are more urgent than others, meaning you can really be in control of what you have to do. Another reason why you should be making lists is to avoid you forgetting crucial tasks and it'll ensure that everything you need to do will be remembered. This is definitely a great way to start accomplishing your goals and seeing everything you have to do in order to get there.

Although I understand that there may be exceptions to this rule, like if you need a laptop for research or set timers on your phone, but I'd recommend staying away from them whenever possible. Technology can be one of the biggest distractions and really comes between you and the task at hand, especially with social media and websites like Youtube. If you're working or doing something productive, keep your phone and laptop away from you whenever possible to stop you from constantly checking them and being less productive when you work.

Everyone has different attention spans and can work for different lengths of time before getting distracted, so make sure you find what this is for you and stick to it. Personally, I find that I can go for a few hours before I get distracted and lose motivation, so I'll do my work in blocks of this amount of time with short breaks in between. To ensure that you stick to this time frame and don't give up after the first 15 minutes, set timers that you will stick by and tell yourself that you have to continue working until you reach the end of the time slot.

If you manage to stick to your work and be productive, reward yourself and take a well-earned break. Although it won't be useful if you don't work at all, it can be equally as damaging if you overwork yourself with no free time. Make sure that you know your limits and stop when you reach them. Also, every so often you should give yourself a small reward, as this will prove that it's worth putting in a lot of effort and will motivate you to keep going towards your goals.

I hope that these tips have been useful and assisted in urging you to be more productive. I'd love to know any other tips that you may have down in the comments, so make sure you share whatever helps you to stay on task. Thanks for reading this blog post and I'll see you next Sunday!

Love from Daisy x

The Benefit Real Cheeky Party is the perfect set for you if you want to try a variety of high-quality, bestselling products for a more affordable price. Included are a selection of gorgeous powders and some other miniature products, meaning you're presented with a wide variety of makeup to test and trial. I absolutely fell in love with this set when I received it and knew that I had to provide you with a review, so I hope you like hearing all of my thoughts!

The packaging for this product is a sturdy metal case, which is durable and helps to protect the products inside but it doesn't make it very travel-friendly. The vibrant greens and pinks are really pretty, fun and definitely what I'd expect from a youthful and quirky brand like Benefit. It's really bold and eye-catching, definitely being something that you could reuse once you finish the products. The only negative is that it doesn't include a mirror when there is space for one, although I don't mind as I probably wouldn't use this product on-the-go anyway due to its size.

Inside this makeup set, there are five different powder, along with a cream highlighter, a mascara and an eyeliner, meaning there is a large variety. Each powder is 5 grams, opposed to the full sized 8 grams, and all of the other products are also miniatures. I'll now talk you through each product included:

Dandelion - this is a pretty, ballerina pink blush that has a slight pink shimmer running through it. This was the first one that I reached for as it looks incredibly wearable and natural, yet still looking lovely on the skin. I think this is particularly nice for Spring and I'll definitely be getting a lot of wear out of it in the upcoming months

Hoola - this medium toned brown is the perfect bronzer shade and I've definitely loved it over the years. Its matte finish means you can make it as natural on the skin as you'd like, and it also looks gorgeous when paired when any of the blushers in the kit. This is definitely a universal shade and will look great on a variety of skin tones, so I'd definitely recommend trying this one, whether it's from this kit or on its own.

Rockateur - this is a dusky rose shade blusher that has a hint of gold shimmer running through it, making it look really pretty and flattering on the skin. This is definitely your average blush shade that isn't too light or too dark, but I don't think that it should be at all underrated as it's an absolutely lovely product that I'll definitely get a lot of use out of.

Coralista - this peachy coral is the perfect summer shade, being different to my usual matte blushers but still absolutely lovely. It has a gold shimmer running through it that gives it a frosted, almost metallic finish, adding to its beauty. I definitely think that less is more with this powder, as it adds a perfect pop of colour to the cheeks without being over the top.

Sugarbomb - this powder contains four different shades, which are a beautiful peachy pink, a muted plum, a more soft pink and a rosy shade. When these are swirled together, they create an absolutely gorgeous shimmering pink, but each section of the product could also be worn on its own for an equally pretty look. I definitely think that this is one of the more underrated powders in the set and from Benefit in general, but it's definitely worth trying.

Watts Up Highlighter - this highlighter is a soft champagne colour and is absolutely beautiful. I'd used this before getting this set and found that it applied a gorgeous amount of shimmer that could be more vivid or natural depending on how you apply it. It has a cream to powder finish, meaning it's feels soft and luxurious on the skin, blending in like a dream, yet once it sets into place it won't budge. I find that it looks particularly pretty on the tops of the cheekbones for an added luminosity, but you could also explore the idea of wearing this as an eyeshadow if you wanted to.

They're Real Mascara - I already knew that I loved this mascara after having used it on-and-off for the past few years, so I was delighted to receive another one in this set. The application is really easy, despite the wand being huge, and I feel as though you can achieve a beautiful look whilst using it. It doesn't clump in my lashes and even one coat makes them look longer and provides a bit of volume. It's also waterproof like you wouldn't believe and doesn't budge once applied, so it's an all round amazing mascara.

They're Real Eyeliner - I haven't trialled this product much since I don't usually wear black eyeliner, but I think it's nice how it was included in this set. I've honestly heard some mixed reviews of it, with some people saying that it's awkward to hold and apply the product, yet others are absolutely in love with it. What can't be denied is that it's a jet black shade and it sets into place after application, not moving at all until you use eye makeup remover. I definitely want to test this product more before I report back with my thoughts, so look out for that sometime in the future.

From left to right - Dandelion, Rockateur, Sugarbomb, Hoola, Coralista and Watts Up

Overall, I really love the concept of this set and it's a great way to try a variety of Benefit's bestselling products, seeing which ones you like before splurging. It's good value for money and it's also nice to have miniatures that you can throw in your handbag. Each product is of an amazing quality, being nothing less than the full-size equivalent, and it's honestly hard to fault this set. The pigmentation and creamy texture to the powders, in particular, is what really sets them apart and clearly demonstrates how this is a perfect set that you need to try.

Have you tried the Benefit Real Cheeky Party set? If you have, I'd love to hear your thoughts down in the comments below, and I'll make sure to read them all! I hope you all enjoyed this post and I'll see you next Sunday with a new one, so bye for now!

Love from Daisy x

This collection is a brand new launch from L'Oreal Paris, being specifically formulated for people who suffer from oily roots yet dry ends in their hair. It's widely believed that washing your hair regularly can strip the ends of any moisture and leave them feeling dry, yet at the same time oil produced by the scalp can build up and make the hair look greasy and lifeless. This new range of products aims to combat both of these issues, so I've been testing them out for the past few weeks to see how they work, and I thought you'd like to hear all of my thoughts.

These products contain different clays, which are unusual ingredients for hair care products yet this may be a revelation that other brands will join in with. Three different clays are included within these products: white clay that purifies the roots, blue clay that hydrates the ends and green clay that revitalises the entire hair. These products are also silicon-free, so the amazing ingredients list initially suggests that they'll be beneficial for the hair. I've been trying out three different products in this collection: the shampoo, conditioner and dry shampoo, so I'll be basing all of my opinions on these.

Before I go into more detailed reviews about each product, I thought I'd add a quick note about the packaging. The sturdy plastic is the same as the rest of the L'Oreal haircare products, but instead they're in a vibrant turquoise blue shade that is really pretty. This makes them seem perfect for spring and summer and I just generally like the vibe of them.

I was really eager to try this shampoo and I was hoping for an outstanding outcome, yet my thoughts on it are mixed. The consistency is ideal for a shampoo, being not too dry or watery, and it also lathers really well, leaving my hair feeling cleansed and free from any dirt. Like all of the L'Oreal shampoos, I find that my hair feels like it's been thoroughly washed after use. My hair reverted back to having greasy roots after a day or two, going against the 72-hour claims, but I was expecting this and knew that it would pretty much take a miracle to completely eliminate excess oils from my hair for that length of time. As for the inclusion of clay in this product, I can honestly say that I haven't noticed a huge difference between using this shampoo and any other one, and regardless of the ingredients, I feel as though the outcome is quite similar for any product I use. Although this was an initial disappointment, I understand that the claims made in this line are extensive and my hair may just not be suited to it, but that doesn't mean that it won't work for others. Also, I feel as though shampoos are something that you have to consistently use for quite a while to see the full effect, so my judgement now could be completely different after a few months of usage.

As with many of the L'Oreal conditioners, I find that my hair is left feeling super silky and smooth. It's never a struggle to get a comb through my hair afterwards and it helps to keep the tangling at bay, which is a major problem that those of you with long hair will also relate to. However, I find that there's nothing particularly special about this conditioner and it works just as well as many others that I've tried. I definitely enjoyed using it and my hair felt nice, with the ends not at all feeling dry, yet I feel as though this can be achieved with other products. However, one thing that I did notice is that my hair tends to retain its silkiness for longer after using this conditioner and it has more of a long-lasting effect on my hair, which is a huge bonus.

The dry shampoo was probably the product that I was most excited to try, as I can almost instantly tell if one works well for my hair or not, so I wanted to see how it performed and whether it measured up to my other favourites. I really like how it doesn't have a colour, unlike some which have a white powdery finish, as this means that it looks more discrete and is easy to blend into your hair. I find that it is great at absorbing and eliminating grease for a day or two after washing your hair, maintaining the freshly washed appearance. However, I feel as though it isn't quite strong enough when your hair is extremely greasy and if you go a long time in between washing your hair, this may not be the product for you. So to summarise, I think this dry shampoo is perfect for freshening up your hair when excess oils are at a minimum, but you may need to invest in something more heavy-duty for when your hair is greasier.

I hope you liked hearing about my thoughts on this collection and if you've tried it, I'd love to hear all of your opinions, so make sure you leave them down in the comments. Thanks for reading this post and I'll see you next weekend with another one!

Love from Daisy x