May Music Favourites!

I haven’t really ever done a monthly favourites post and I feel like that’s because I don’t want to commit to doing them. I don’t really have enough money to have new favourite makeup items every month and I’m massively a creature of habit. When I put my makeup on I generally reach for the same things most days. So, for lack of a better reason, it’d just be boring for you to read and is probably end up giving up!

One thing I do generally have new favourites of every month is MUSIC! I’m not promising I’ll post this every month but I’ve been inspired by some of the things I’ve listened to this past month and want to talk about them.

Not all of these songs are new but they’re just what I’ve personally been listening to this past month 🙂

Paramore – Hard Times

Paramore are one of my FAVOURITE bands and I really love their unique sound. Their latest album After Laughter does not disappoint in the SLIGHTEST! The intro to Hard Times reminds me of Ain’t it Fun in all the best ways. You can tell it’s Paramore because it doesn’t sound like anybody else! Hayley Williams’ vocals are clear and perfect as usual but what really makes the song is the instruments thy chose to use.

Lorde – Green Light

Green Light is the first single released from Lorde’s upcoming (and much anticipated) second album Melodrama. It starts out sounding quite ominous and familiar to anyone who was a fan of Pure Heroine. I initially thought it was going to turn into something like Glory and Gore, but then that catchy piano riff comes in and we’re hit with an intelligent, thoughtful and almost apocalyptic pop song.

Solange – Don’t Touch My Hair

After the cataclysmic success of Beyonce’s Lemonade in 2016 I think a lot of people were excited for Solange Knowles’ third album. It must be hard being Beyonce’s, probably the most famous pop star of our generation, sister. A Seat at the Table does not disappoint though. Lemonade is one of my favourite albums so it doesn’t quite match up to that for me (it is worth noting that they aren’t really comparable at all in terms of sound) but there are more than a few strong songs on this album. Don’t Touch My Hair showcases Solange’s beautiful voice and also her talent for subtlety.

David Bowie – Blackstar

This is an iconic song and an iconic album. The instruments and layered vocals make for a haunting listen and this is only intensified when considering the context in which it was written. If you like this song I’d highly recommend watching the music video! It’s creepy and sinister and it can be hard not to start thinking about the fact that David Bowie knew he was dying while shooting it, but around the 5:30 mark he flashes a smile at the camera and starts messing about and I found it comforting and it made me think that he had perhaps come to peace with what was happening to him (obviously that’s a lot of speculation but I like to think so).

Luis Fonsi feat Daddy Yankee (Justin Bieber remix) – Despacito 

Who hasn’t been listening to this on repeat the past few weeks? What I really love about it is that it was a breath of fresh air to me. I was happy to hear something that sounded a bit different to what I was used to. Given that it’s a predominantly Spanish song it’s pretty impressive that it reached number 1 in 37 countries! The Justin Bieber remix made it accessible to English speaking listeners but the heavy Spanish influence made it different enough to catch people’s attention.

Zara Larsson – Only You

Oh Zara. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I’ve been loving Zara Larsson’s album So Good recently. Only You is my favourite song on the album. Not because of the lyrics particularly but because of the sound. The start of the song sounds to me quite sinister and the chorus an outpouring of emotion. Or you could just focus on the line about masturbation, but I like to think there’s more to it than that 🙂

Drake – Passionfruit and Blem

Aubrey Graham needs no introduction. Find me someone who hasn’t been listening to More Life on repeat this summer? My favourites from the album are Passionfruit, the second single, and Blem. The start of Passionfruit makes me think of driving through a motorway tunnel at night with the orange streetlight coming in the window (don’t ask me why, it just does) and Blem provides me with all the sass and Aubrey realness I’ve been craving (“I need you to stop running back to your ex he’s a wasteman” case in point).

Death Grips – Get Got

I started listening to Death Grips when I was bored. I got stuck in a rut listening to the same few albums whenever I wanted to play music and I started to get sick of them and frustrated. It was time for me to seek out some new music. Death Grips were a breath of fresh air to me because they sounded different to anything else I’d listened to. Sometimes people give me an odd look when I play them but I personally love their experimental style and slightly manic sound.

Iggy Pop – Lust for life

I hardly need to say much to sell this song. It’s been a hit since it’s release in 1977. It’s catchy, instantly recognisable and screams to me of youthfulness. Iggy Pop is a legend and has too many amazing songs to count, so I don’t know why I’ve been listening to this song more this month, but I have been so it’s one of my recommendations 🙂

Well there you have it, my May music favourites. I’ve decided to put together a Spotify playlist including all of the songs I’ve mentioned and some more of my favourites from the albums they’re from. To check that out click HERE.

Thanks for reading!

Until next time,

J x

this road is red alison irvine review

Books about Glasgow: Past and Present

The title of this post is probably a slight misrepresentation of what I’m going to talk about today. I’ve recently read 2 different, unrelated books about/set in Glasgow. One was written in 1992, Poor Things by Alasdair Gray (Click here!), and one in 2011, This Road is Red by Alison Irvine (Click here!). So when I say “past and present” I really mean “not really written that far apart in the grand scheme of things” but let’s just brush over that.

Poor Things – Alasdair Gray

poor things alasdair gray review

I recently read Poor Things for one of my English courses and then wrote on it in my exam (let’s not ponder that too much). Despite it having been published in 1992 the bulk of the book is set around the late 19th – early 20th century. It is the memoirs of Archibald McCandless and his experience with an old friend and his wife Bella Baxter. Without spoiling too much he describes how his friend and physician (Godwin, cleverly named I imagine) found a pregnant woman after a suicide attempt and salvaged her body and the brain of the fetus and created, essentially, a new human being from the two. Archibald then met and fell in love with this woman, Bella, despite her having the mind of a child. After McCandless finishes telling his story and we find, has died, Bella is left with the manuscript and adds her version of events on to the end.

The book won both the Whitbread Novel Award and the Guardian Fiction Prize in 1992 and has been acclaimed for its intertextuality (frequently compared to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and full of Gothicism). Personally, I found it an engaging read and whether you’re from Glasgow or not I would recommend it. If you are from Glasgow though, you’ll recognise many of the landmarks referenced throughout the book, such as Park Circus and Charing Cross.

This Road is Red – Alison Irvine

this road is red alison irvine review

This book, in my mind, is decidedly more modern than Poor Things. It is set from the 1960’s to the late 2000’s, the majority of the lifespan of Glasgow’s Red Road flats. The flats garnered a lot of attention over the years, being the highest residential blocks in Europe when they went up and becoming an infamous slum in their later years. It’s no surprise that now, after they’ve been demolished, they remain culturally and historically significant.

I enjoyed this book so much. It contains so many different, interwoven, stories (almost in the style of Love Actually). Each of the stories is full, well rounded and interesting which makes each chapter of the book refreshing and exciting to read. Again I’d recommend this book wherever you are from. Simply as a work of fiction I rate it quite highly, but knowing that it is grounded in reality makes it all the more captivating. The book was also shortlisted for the Scottish First Book of the Year award at the Saltire Society Awards in 2011.

I hope you enjoyed this little book post 🙂 if you’ve read either of these books or have any other suggestions please comment below!

Until next time,

J x

Campsie Glen monument

Bad at Spontaneity

It’s not too often that I’m spontaneous, but when I am I suck at it!

I can recall a couple of times over the past few years that I’ve been spontaneous and it’s actually gone well. One time I decided I was going to go see Ariana Grande live that weekend in Glasgow. It just so happened to coincide with my friend moving out of her flat and coming home for the summer so we went together and travelled back up to Inverness together. You could say it was a success.

Other times haven’t gone quite so well. I recently spontaneously decided to go to Amsterdam for a few nights and also bought a ticket for TRNSMT (a summer festival in Glasgow) because all my friends are going (and they’re enablers that convinced me to come). I had a great time in Amsterdam and I’m sure I will at the festival too but these split decisions have also resulted in me being at the bottom of my £600 overdraft for the past few months.

Yesterday, however, was perhaps my biggest fail at being spontaneous. My cousin and I had just signed the lease on our flat for next year (side note, it’s a lovely flat and we’re super excited!) and we went for lunch and cocktails to celebrate. Yeah I know what you’re thinking, that sounds like a nice way to spend the day? It would’ve been had we been satisfied with that. But, alas, no. We decided to go to the bus station and get on a bus somewhere, with the idea that we’d have a little walk and find a pub to have a few more drinks in. We ended up on a bus to a place called Campsie Glen.

Once we arrived in Campsie Glen we quickly realised that we’d got off at the wrong stop and basically had to walk 4 miles to the village! This really wouldn’t have been so bad had it not been pissing it down with rain and we were dressed up nicely after signing the lease which (for some reason) resulted in a few men in vans beeping their horns and shouting at us. Charming. It also would have been fine if, when we arrived in the village, the pub had been OPEN!

Yes, the pub was shut. We walked even further to another pub and walked in to the welcome of the judging stares of the locals. Also to be told that they don’t accept card and we had no cash. By this point we were both just so done. So we decided to write it off as a MASSIVE fail and get the bus back to Glasgow.

What later occurred was the consumption of a disturbing amount of alcohol, an impromptu night out and a HORRIBLE hangover today.

So there you have it. I’m a fail, no surprises there. Some good came of it though because I took some cute pictures in Campsie Glen. May as well focus on the silver lining eh?

Campsie Glen signpostCampsie Glen Aldessan Gallery and Coffee ShopCampsie Glen monumentCampsie Glen LakeCampsie Glen sheep, Cheviot sheep, Scotland
Until next time,

J x

Spring Highlighters

Hey! Sorry I’ve taken a bit of a break from blogging just because I was finishing up with exams and then after that I’ve basically been sleeping and/or seeing my friends and actually having some fun! The weather has, surprisingly, been really quite nice up here the past few weeks though and it’s got me in the mood to wear my makeup a little differently. One of my absolute favourite makeup items is highlighter, so I thought I’d review a couple of the ones I own today.

The first real highlighter I ever bought was:

MAC Mineralize Skin Finish in Soft and Gentle £24.50 (Link here!)

I absolutely love this product because it has a natural, peachy, pearly shimmer and catches the light very nicely without being too intense (although is that really a thing?)

mac soft and gentle highlight

This is what it looks like on (apologies for the messy bed spread). Also, side note, it’s really hard to get highlight to show up in a picture without piling it on! This was the best one I could get but as you can see it gives you quite a nice glow 🙂

My most recent “purchase” (I ordered it and it never showed up so I got a refund and then it magically came through my door, don’t tell!) was:

Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette £10.00 (Link here!).

This is my favourite of the moment, not only is it significantly cheaper than the Mineralize Skin Finish, you get four different shades! There are three powders and one cream highlight, so surely it’s all you could need? My favourite is the peachy shade in the bottom right of the palette. It has quite a high shine and I love the way it looks on!

Again it was difficult to get the highlight to show up in pictures but this was my best attempt. All of the shades in the palette has a similar level of shine. The cream was obviously more dewy and natural looking so would be great for a hot day.


I swatched each other shades on my hand, the far left is the MAC and the rest are from the Sleek palette.

I also own Nars Albatross, however, for me personally it comes up a little yellow on my skin (probably because I’m so pale). So it’s not one of my favourites. All three are great products though and at the end of the day it comes down to personal preference. MAC has more of a natural shimmer, Sleek a little more intense and glitz.

I hope you enjoyed this, it was just a quick one because I’m not the best at beauty posts but I thought I may as well try as I do love makeup! Please comment below telling me about your favourite makeup products and highlighters 🙂

Until next time,

J x