What One Year Of Blogging Has Taught Me

I recently got a notification from WordPress that I have been blogging for a year now! Technically, I created my blog a year ago but I only started actively blogging 3 months ago. I have experienced a lot of ups and downs during these past 3 months and I think it would be lovely to share what I have learnt about blogging so far. I hope you enjoy!

Blogging is not as easy as it seems

That perfect flatlay and glamorous pictures you see on blogs have probably been taken a 100 times to look just right. Before I started blogging I used to think people just empty the contents of their makeup bag and everything falls beautifully in place. I didn’t understand why mine looked like a hot mess. It takes a lot of effort and hours to plan posts, write it, take pictures and promote it. Blogging can easily turn into a full-time job! You have to be consistent and diligent and always try to improve. It’s not easy, but definitely worth it. So far!

If something isn’t working, don’t be afraid to scrap it

When I first started blogging I couldn’t decide on what niche I wanted to blog about. So I started with many niches like music, movies, books, fashion, makeup, travelling and lifestyle. I started posting and I quickly realised that people did not like reading my independent posts about music, books and movies. So I deleted all those posts and I slowly dwindled down my topics to things that people liked. I listened to my readers and acted accordingly.

I think its okay to not blog about everything. Even if you love everything like me LOL. I think my opinion is more valued in certain areas than others, which is great! It allows my thoughts to be more targeted and my quality to be better. Don’t be afraid to adapt especially when you are starting out because you have we have so much lee way for change now!

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Shamelessly promote your blog

A lot of people feel shy about sharing their blog posts but it is one of the best ways for people to find your blog. I am not saying that you should be that annoying, spammy blogger, but doing things like sharing your posts once social media and leaving your blog link at the end of comments is a great way to get your blog out there. If you feel uncomfortable about sharing your posts with people you know you can carve out an entirely separate community of strangers to share your posts with. For example, I now have a separate Instagram page where I am striving to grow a community of like-minded people different from followers on my personal page!

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Interact with the blogging community

Interacting with other people is so important when you’re a blogger. It’s not enough to just publish posts and sit and wait for something to happen. I make sure to reply to every single person that took the time to comment on my post. Doing this helps build relationships with the people that read your posts! Also, do not be afraid to comment on other people’s posts, share their blog post, like them or follow them on Instagram. When you comment, try to leave thoughtful comments. Simply commenting “Nice” or “Great post” does not count. It shows you didn’t read a word of the persons post. Truly interacting really makes your blogging experience so much better!

This is one of the best tips for growing any social media site; posting often, striving for quality content and interacting with the community!

 Be yourself

I think it’s perfectly okay to derive inspiration from another person because almost everything under the sun has been blogged about. I think what makes a post unique in particular is the fact that it is your unique perspective. That is why it is important to be honest and be yourself. It is so exhausting trying to act like something you are not and I think people can pick up on that. On the flip side, it is so liberating when people embrace unique aspects of your personality that you may think are weird or not good enough. That can be what makes you stand out!

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I’m definitely still a baby blogger and I have no idea what I am doing 99.999 percent of the time so these are just some of the things I have learnt so far! I also have no idea what I’m going to do when I move into a self hosted site. And what in heavens name is SEO and HTML? This is uncharted territory. LOL wish me luck and fingers crossed that I appear graceful admist the madness!

What has blogging taught you?

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The 700 Followers Q&A! + Blogging Tips

Last week I hit 700 followers on my blog and I decided to do a Q&A! I am now literally racing against the clock here because I checked my stats this morning and I currently have 790 followers. Gasp! I really wanted to release this blog post before I hit 800 for some strange, slightly OCD reason. Haha

I would like to sincerely thank everyone who sent I questions for this post. There are a wide variety of questions which were interesting to read and answer. I also left the link to each persons blog that asked a question so you can discover some blogs you may like. Enjoy!

Life Of Angela 

What three words best describe you? 

Calm, Strong-willed and Playful.

What is the longest plane trip you have taken? 

The longest plane ride I have ever taken was from Nigeria to Atlanta which took 12 hours. I did not enjoy that flight. In fact, I dislike flying in general. The seats suck, the food is rarely nice and turbulence. Don’t get me started on turbulence. I’m jealous of you unicorns that enjoy Business or First class seats. My parents and little sister always fly Business/First and when we happen to fly on the same flight our experience wildly varies.

Sister: “How was the flight for you?”

Me: “Just there. I didn’t sleep much, my neck is now stiff and the turbulence was so much!”

Sister: “What turbulence? I slept all through, except for when the flight attendant gently roused me from my sleep with the sound of violins to wake me up for my 3 course breakfast.”

Okay I’m kind of exaggerating, but you get my point lool. Although I hate flying, I love travelling to different places. At this point flying is just a necessary evil for me.

Chёrnaja Kuriцa 

What app do you use to edit your pictures? 

I use this app on my Macbook called PhotoScape X. It is free and has all the features that most people need for blogging. I usually edit all my photos there before transferring it to my phone if I need to post a picture on twitter or Instagram!

QuintessentialFaith

What part of the world are you in and would you like to do blogger collaboration?

I currently live in Nigeria, Africa! I lived in the UK for three years but I am now back to my home country for a gap year.

I would also not mind doing a blogger collaboration. It sounds kind of fun. I  am not entirely sure how it works so I’ll have to get more information on it before I dive in.

Natural Muse

If you could give your younger self any advice what would it be?

It’s okay to be you. I used to have quite the low self esteem as a teenager and I was constantly trying to please people. It becomes truly exhausting when people do not understand you and you cannot truly be yourself without the crippling fear of being judged. It was definitely not easy  to come out of that negative energy and headspace on my own but once I did there was no looking back. Life is a million times better when you adopt a positive mindset and embrace who you are. If I could go back I would tell my younger self that it is okay!

The Obsession Begins

If you could be anyone for one day, who would you be?

I have no specific people in mind but I’ve always wanted to swap places with a super rich and or famous person. They live glamorous lives and it would be interesting to experience it!

Elsie LMC

How do you feel looking back on your first ever blog post and seeing how far you’ve come? 

It is pretty surreal looking at my first post ever. I literally had no idea what I was doing. My first post ever was on June 13 2016. I wrote about my interests at the time and introduced myself to the Blogosphere! I was still doing Youtube at the time and I decided to add blogging to the mix. However, I am not active on Youtube anymore (Do you guys think I should continue? I have mixed feelings about it) I also had no concrete idea of what I wanted to blog about but I knew it was something I wanted to do.

Wormal Blog

What’s your favorite 2017 trend so far?

I’m really liking this embroidered flower print fashion trend thats going on right now. I think it takes any basic outfit and makes it look glamorous. One of my favourite looks I wore recently was this cute embroidered white button up top from Zara with my embroidered Gucci Dionysus bag!

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What is your dream car?

I’m not really a car person but I really like the look of a Mercedes, Bentley or a Rolls Royce! 

What was your first date like?

It was horrid. Lol

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How often do you post and would you have any tips in terms of what’s worked for you?

I used to post every Monday but I have recently increased the frequency of my posts to twice a week! I am now trying to post every Monday and Friday because that seems to be when I have the most traffic on my blog!

Glaiza Binayas

What do you think is the best strategy that worked well for you to get more traffic to your blog?

One of the best strategies that has worked for getting more traffic on my blog is to actually interact with other blogs I like. I love how WordPress.com makes it so easy to follow and find other blogs. I have the WordPress app on my iPhone and I go through it and read people blog posts. If I particularly enjoyed reading it, I would like or comment on the post. Showing support to other blogs is a great way to build a positive relationship with other bloggers and also get your blog out there!

I am still learning as I go along and maybe there is an even better strategy but this is what has been working for me so far.

That is it for my Q&A! I know this was a pretty long post but I have been getting into the habit of writing long posts recently. I think it shows my increasing investment in this blog. Please follow me on my Instagram and Twitter account for my blog ❤

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The Mid Year Favourites Roundup: Books, Music, Movies and Makeup!

We are officially in the middle of the year! 2017 has gone by so quickly and I can’t believe we are already here now. I feel like 2017 is this strange, transitional period that does not deserve to be a year. I have this strange thing about certain years, especially odd numbers. 2015 was one of those years.

I am doing something slightly different from the normal posts on my blog. I think it’s always good to branch out and try different things because you never know how it may be received. I love reading monthly favourites because it gives me a glimpse into people’s lives and what they’ve been into that month. I discover a lot of makeup brands, TV shows and even music that I want to try. So todays favourites will include other things I am interested in besides makeup! Enjoy!

MUSIC

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Music plays a big role in my life and certain songs have gotten me through special events (Shout out to J. Cole’s  Forest Hills Drive album for helping me in my undergraduate exam period). I listen to many genres of music but my favourites have included a lot of rap this year. Here they are:

  •  The Art Of Peer Pressure – Kendrick Lamar
  •  Bad and Boujee – Migos
  •  T-Shirt – Migos
  •  IF – Davido
  •  Losing My Religion – R.E.M

BOOKS

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I read one or two books a month on average and I have read a couple of books on my Kindle since the beginning of the year. These are the two books that I’ve really enjoyed reading…

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The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up

I read this book earlier this year and it really was life changing! I was a hopelessly messy person filled with clutter and shame but after a few months I can officially say that I am a tidy person with no more clutter in my life anymore. I love how the book doesn’t only tackle your clutter but it shows you how to prevent it from ever happening again. I really love my new clutter free self. It is an amazing book and definitely worth a read! I wrote an extended post about it here

Split second

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What if you could go back in time, but only for half of a second?

I am obsessed with the concept of time travel. I just find the scientific concepts surrounding time travel so intriguing. I always love to sit and imagine if time travel were possible. I also like to imagine the implications and paradoxes that we would encounter if it exists!

I read this book by Douglas E. Richards which addressed all my time travel questions. Half a second seems like an inconsequential amount of time but this book will clearly prove otherwise!

MAKEUP

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Maybelline Fit Me Foundation


I haven’t said this on my blog yet but Maybelline is the best foundation I have ever used. It glides on like silk on your skin and gives a finishing that no foundation has yet to match. That is a hefty statement coming from me. The only con about Maybelline is that it does not last long! However, I always use a bullet proof setting powder so I have no issues with it. It is also extremely affordable. It is currently my daily foundation and Lancôme is my “event” foundation.

Dior Addict Lipgloss in “Angelique”


I have gone back to an “effortless” makeup style recently. I have been enjoying lip glosses A LOT recently and the Dior Addict lipstick has definitely been one of my favourite glosses! I did an extended review here.

TV & MOVIES

Interstellar

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I re-watched one of my favourite movies of all time and I was not disappointed! Interstellar is a movie about interstellar travel through space and time in an effort to help the dying human race find a new home. It’s beautifully written, directed and the film score is one of the best I have ever listened to in a movie. It’s the kind of movie that you will think about several days after it’s over because it’s SO good.

Bates Motel

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This series is so low-key but so good. I don’t why it’s not popular! It is based on the 50’s novel “American Psycho” which shows how the complicated relationship between Norman Bates and his mother turns him from a loving, loyal son into a serial killer with dissociative identity disorder. They just finished the final season so now you can binge watch away!

Donald Trumps Presidency (As seen on CNN, aka fake news lmao )

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They say truth is stranger than fiction and I completely agree. I watch House Of Cards and I can officially say that what’s happening on TV is more outrageous than the show. I think Donald Trump’s Presidency is playing like a movie and its interesting to watch how his administration is imploding from within. From the battle with “Fake news” to the ongoing Russia investigation to cofveve, this presidency has been nothing short of strange and entertaining. Just when you think it can’t get worse, a new bomb shell drops and turns everything on its head. I will definitely be keeping up with Donald Trump in 2017.

That is it for my favourites! Thank you so much for reading. What have been your favourites this year? 

Please follow me on my new Instagram specifically for my blog! ❤

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4 Fool Proof Tips For Thicker Natural Hair

My natural hair is currently the longest and thickest it’s ever been. I never imagined in a million years that I would prefer wearing my own hair over weaves and wigs. My hair had been neck length for as long as I could remember. It was also thin, straggly and had a lot of split ends. This was because I used to relax my hair, which is very damaging when done incorrectly.

My hair is currently armpit length, which is at the middle of my shoulders and bra strap. However you won’t know that because my hair grows up and outwards instead of downwards and it shrinks up to 90% of it’s length when wet! I also have ALOT of hair. Its both a blessing and a curse! Although my hair had been growing pretty quickly for two years, the third year of my natural hair journey was pretty challenging. I slowly started slacking in my hair care routine and  getting regular trims which set me back in terms of length and thickness. These past few months I have slowly getting my hair back to its former glory!

Here are some of the tips and products that have helped me get my hair back in tip top shape.

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Don’t Skip The Trim

Seriously, if your hair needs a trim and deep down in your heart you know, please trim it. I know my hair needs a trim when the ends become dry, tangle easily and it is difficult to comb through my afro smoothly. If I leave my hair without trimming it, I end up with more breakage because I have to yank the comb through my hair. When you also trim your hair, you get rid of thin, see through ends which makes your hair appear fuller and thicker!

Double Up On Oil 

Oils are an age old hair secret that is very crucial to promoting growth and getting thicker hair. I love using natural oils like Shea butter and Jamaican Castor oil. I use Jamaican Black Castor oil daily on my scalp and throughout the length of my hair after spraying it with water. I love these oils because they are thick, moisturising and make my hair softer compared to other oils.

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Oh Conditions, Conditions….

Conditioner is my hair’s saving grace. I don’t know where I would be without it! It makes my hair softer and more manageable when I want to comb it or style it. I don’t deep condition often but I use leave in conditioners almost everyday. The great thing about conditioner is that you can use a leave in or a rinse out, but as long as you use it often the health of your hair will improve because it will reduce dryness and breakage!

My current favourite conditioner is Aunt Jackie’s Quench Moisture Intensive Leave in Conditioner. It is definitely one of the best leave in conditioners I have used!

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Be Patient

Hair grows about half an inch a month on average and it is slower for many people. Once you follow a good hair regimen your hair will grow! I would also stress the importance of loving and embracing your hair texture no matter what it is. Thin, thick, long or short. Hair envy is real and it makes you start manipulating your hair to look like something that it can never look like! This can cause a lot of damage internally and externally. I’m someone that always tries to enjoy the process of something than the end product, it makes it much more enjoyable! Be patient and enjoy your hair.

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Thanks so much for reading! What are your  tips for getting longer and thicker hair?

 

Travel tag 

A few days ago I hit 400 followers on The Pearly Life! My current tally is 431 followers and I am humbled that 400 of you follow and enjoy reading my posts. I love the continuous support and I hope to grow more with you all. Thank you so much!

So I was nominated by Oriana Notes to do the Travel Tag . Thank you so much for the nomination Oriana! I am fortunate to have travelled to countries like South Africa, The Netherlands, U.K., U.A.E and U.S.A. It’s an amazing experience to travel and study in different countries and I will answer some questions about traveling in this post. Enjoy!

What is your favourite place that you have visited?

This is such a difficult question because I love different things about all the different places I’ve gone to. However if I had to choose I would say Orlando, Florida, U.S.A. I have visited Florida almost every year since 2002! I have been going to Florida for 15 years and I still look forward to going there every year. I have tried other cities like Atlanta and New York but we realized that Florida is the perfect place for us. Florida is my home away from home. In fact, we loved it so much that we bought a house there! It’s so peaceful, nice restaurants and there are so many theme parks like Disney World (That has 6 separate theme parks), Wet N Wild and Universal Studios! It’s the perfect place for family.

Dubai was also one of my favourite places to visit. It is the most regal city I have ever visited and I had a unique experience. I loved living the Arabian lifestyle for a few days and I would really love to go again. Check out some of the posts I did on my trip to Dubai.

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If you could visit anywhere tomorrow where would you go?

Also a difficult question but I would pick Italy if I had a choice. I’m absolutely obsessed with the thought of going to Venice and Rome. Italy is teeming with history and romance. I think it would be amazing to experience it myself. A bit of context here; my parents were still dating when they went to Italy, which I think is sooooooo cute! I often joke to my parents that if my boyfriend takes me to Italy that that’s how I’ll know issa husband! LOL

IMG_3572.JPG[Mum and Dad in Italy – Early 90’s]

Would you rather go on a city holiday or a beach holiday?

Definitely a city holiday! I’m not a very outdoorsy person and I have lived in cities my whole life so it is something that feels like a second home to me.

My top three holiday essentials are…

I did an extensive post on this here! My top three essentials are my Canon camera, iPhone and obviously my passport!

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Are you an over packer or an under packer? 

I’m definitely an over packer! I just can’t stand the thought of forgetting something important so I overcompensate when I pack. This usually results in me discarding things that I packed in my destination country because I don’t have space for the new things I bought!

What is your favourite thing about going on holidays?

I love the change of scenery, the people and the culture. One of the first things that usually excites me when I get to a new destination is driving in the car, looking out the window and just realising that I’m in a new country.

Would you rather go on holidays with family or friends?

I’m going to be one of those odd people that prefers going with my family than friends. I haven’t reached a point with any friend where they will understand what I enjoy during a holiday. What my friends would probably do in a holiday will not interest me. I also enjoy my family’s company so I wouldn’t mind going on a holiday with them.

What is the most adventurous dish you have ever tried from another country?

The most adventurous dish I tried didn’t have to come from another country. I experienced it in the comfort of my house! I’m going to say edible worms from my home country Nigeria.  It looks like maggots and smells really strange but it’s actually pretty good!

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[Photo Credit: Sisi Yemmie ]

However, what I consider adventurous in Nigeria is child play for many people here. Nigerians eat snails, worms, insects, crocodiles, tortoise, horses, monkeys, snakes and some eat dogs! Any time my parents say they have eaten some strange animal I’m always in awe. My mother said the best wild meat she has tried is a tortoise! It’s less common in the city area to find these dishes, but it’s more common in smaller towns. However, snails are readily available in a lot of restaurants.

I also find it funny how snails are dramatic and expensive abroad (escargot) but we’ve been eating this in Nigeria for as long as we can remember. Come to Nigeria and eat peppered snails please. It’s absolutely delicious!

Who do you want to do this tag

I nominate

Deb Writes Blog 

Styled By Mckenz

Kimberly Loves

Life of Angela 

Thank you so much for reading! Check out my social media accounts.

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My Guide To The Perfect Nude Lipstick

There are two lipstick colors I love the most; red and nude. They are versatile, timeless and can go with almost any look you have. It has taken a number of years and a lot of trial and error but I believe I now have a great collection of nude lipsticks which are affordable and very unique!

Choosing A Nude Lipstick

When embarking on a journey on finding the perfect nude lipstick, it’s good to have an idea on what sort of nude look you are going for. I get inspiration for my nude lipstick styles from makeup artists on Instagram and television.

No nude lipstick is the same.  There are lipsticks with brown undertones and pinkish undertones, creamy and matte finishes and a variety of prices. I love all types of nudes so I try to incorporate all styles into my makeup collection!

Getting Practical

I would personally say that “finding my skin undertone” with regards to lipstick colour has never worked for me. I don’t have a set undertone in my skin, it’s just brown. This was very evident when I used MAC’s different foundation colours. “NW” foundations, which was meant for warm skin tones, was too red on my skin and “NC” which is mean for cooler skin tones, was too yellow!

What I would suggest is to go to a makeup counter or drugstore like MAC or Boots, try on the first nude lipstick on your arm or lips, and take note of what is off.

“Is it too light?” “Is it not brown or pink enough?” “Not Matte enough?” “Too Sheer?”

Taking notes will allow you to know what nude colour and shade works best on your skin tone so when ever you switch a brand you will have an idea of what nude colour or shade to turn to every time. This is because you will know what shade complements your skin color and what doesnt. Keep in mind that most nude lipsticks do not look finished when applied straight on! They usually need a lip liner to make it look better. So don’t run away from that light lipstick, just find a great lip liner for it!

I also love to have a wide array of different types of nude lipsticks, my 3 favourite nude lipsticks are a combination of matte and glossy finishes to brown and pinkish undertones. It just makes it fun so I never get bored of my lipstick!

MAC Cosmetics – Taupe

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This is one of my best nude lipsticks. It is described as a muted, reddish taupe brown. It applies smoothly and has a creamy matte finish. It appears like a pinkish-brown nude on my lips and it is very long wearing! I always pair it with my favourite MAC lip liner, Bittersweet. Although MAC lipsticks are a high end, they are high quality so it is definitely worth buying!

MILANI Colour Statement Lipstick – Teddy Bare

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This nude lipstick is comparable to MAC. It is one of the best and affordable drug store lipsticks! It is super creamy. It’s not a completely matte formula but it is not too shimmery or glossy. It appears light pink on my lips and it is also so affordable at less than £6 compared to £23 for MAC!

NYX Lip Lingerie – Beauty Mark

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I already did a detailed review of this liquid lipstick here! This lipstick is a muted matte brown that reminds me of Kylie Jenner’s True Brown liquid lipstick. It gives me that 90’s vibe feel whenever I wear it and I think it is such a beautiful shade! It is also very affordable at just £6.30 so I think it is definitely worth a buy.

What is your favourite nude on this list? 

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Handling Rejections and The Power of Positive Thinking

When I was applying for my undergraduate degree in Biomedical Science, I was rejected by 4 out of the 5 schools I applied to. To make matters worse, I got rejected by these schools one by one until it was only that one school left. It was one of the most demoralising times of my life. I was extremely anxious and uncertain of my future and what would happen if I couldn’t go to school that year.

However, I wouldn’t change a thing that happened. Although I got accepted by only one school, it turned out to be the perfect university for me. Studying in Salford University made me fall in love with Biomedical Science. It allowed me to excel and I graduated with a First Class Honours Degree! (For some context for my non-British readers, my grades were evaluated to be equivalent to a 3.83/4 GPA by WES)

My university experience is just a type of rejection that you could experience. There are so many different things that people go through that are way worse than silly university applications. They are not defined by their circumstances and their rejections. They never let it get to them. They are extremely inspiring to me!

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Rejection

Getting rejected sucks. And it especially sucks when you poured your heart and soul into something and no one appreciates, no one wants it, people laugh and completely ignore it. You feel inadequate, like something is wrong with you and you try to analyze everything you did and what you could have done differently. These were thoughts that crossed my mind on a number of occasions. But during these last few years I have reformed my way of thinking and I have began to adopt a positive mindset. Adopting a positive mindset has allowed me to enjoy life more. I appreciate the simpler things and I understand that it’s okay to try again!

Getting Positive

Call me crazy but I truly, truly believe positive thoughts attract positive things. What you think can really affect the outcomes of situations in your life.  It’s like the law of the freaking universe.

I often draw inspiration from extraordinary people whenever I approach challenging situations in life. As future scientist, I am inspired by scientists that succeeded above all odds. One peculiar example is Thomas Edison: a great inventor and businessman. Most people know him as the man who invented the lightbulb. When he was younger, Thomas Edison’s teachers said that he was “too stupid to learn anything”. He was fired from a number of jobs he had because he was “unproductive”. He also had 1000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the lightbulb. One thousand, painstaking, detailed attempts! Thomas Edison was rejected and experienced thousands of failures before his successes. His drive and ambition was extraordinary!

Rejections and failures are a normal part of life but you  only need one yes or success for things to turn around. In times of rejection, I believe having a positive mindset is crucial because it allows you to handle negative situations properly. Don’t give up!

Have Faith

In Christianity, faith is the pillar of it’s belief. We hope for things that we do not see and things we can never understand.  In hard times, we are encouraged to have faith and hope that things will work out for the greater good. In fact, faith is so powerful in Christianity that a parable says that even if you have faith as small as mustard seed, you can move a mountain! Even if you are not a religious person, having faith allows you to keep your head up high and not be overwhelmed by your problems.

Hope

I always say to myself if rejections happen that it’s not the end of the world. It may feel like it but just keep hoping. Never stop hoping for positive things. Affirm that you will receive them and work really hard for it. Don’t worry if it doesn’t work out the first time. Try again, try harder and in different variations. Above all, hope for the best. Believe that the universe is working for your good and not against you. Hope that everything will work out for the greater good!

How do you handle rejections?

Thank you for reading!

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DUBAI: My Desert Safari Experience

The Desert Safari is a popular tourist activity in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. My Desert Safari included 3 activities; Desert Dune Bashing, a Camel ride and and a BBQ dinner with a desert camp experience. I booked through Golden Treasure Tourism which did my visa, tourism activities, air ticketing and hotel bookings. To begin the day, a driver picked us up from the hotel with a group of 4 other people and drove us to the desert.  Before I travelled to Dubai, my travel agent had told my mother that sand dune bashing is very scary and if she doesn’t want to have a heart attack she shouldn’t do it because it’s similar to a roller coaster ride. Because of this, when it was almost time for dune bashing, my mother told the driver that she didn’t want to drive on the “fast car” but she wants to come down from the car and drive on the “slow one”. This got lots of protests from the second group. Unbeknownst to her, the slow one didn’t exist.

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The driver just completely ignored her, smiled, turned on the car and proceeded to give us the wildest ride of our lives.  I have never been driven so fast in my life! I have also never screamed so loud in my life either! The car was tilting and swerving at a 45 degree angle over steep sand cliffs while we were bouncing and holding on for dear life. I literally thought the car was going to topple over and have an accident. The driver later told me that the second group had paid him to drive extra fast and that was why he was the most extreme dune basher among all the other drivers! But he was such a nice soul who took good care of us and I became good friends with him later.

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Although it was so scary at first, I started to have so much fun! The adrenaline was coursing through my veins and I started laughing and taking videos. There is also nothing like a seemingly near death experience to bond everyone in the car. I and the other group soon became fast friends and I learnt a lot about Dubai, camels and the Afghan culture from them.

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After dune bashing it was time for the camel ride! Camels are beautiful, tall and calm creatures. It is pretty easy to get on a camel but when it is getting up you can easily fall over so hold on tight!

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The next activity was the desert camp experience! There are so many things to do like henna, trying on traditional Arabian clothing, sand art and eagle handling. I tried everything but the eagle handling because there wasn’t enough time. The entertainment included a belly dancer, an illusionist spinning-type dancer, and a fire breather. The food was also pretty good. There was BBQ chicken, beef, rice and lots of salad and bread. I had a lot of fun!

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Most days are rarely perfect. I think the day of my Desert Safari was perfect and it is easily one of the top three experiences of my life. I loved every single thing about this experience, the people I met, the new things I tried and I am so happy I got to experience it with my mother. Thank you so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed my post!

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4 Ways To Improve Your Blog Photos 

Taking photos is an integral part of social media these days and this includes blogs! Having a few high quality, interesting photos on your blog increases your chances of viewers reading your posts. I have been blogging for a few months now and I have learnt a few tips that helped improve and increase my knowledge on blog photography. Here they are!

 

1. Invest in a quality camera:- I currently use a Canon Powershot SX700HS which is a compact digital camera. I also have a Canon 600D which is a larger DSLR camera but I personally think the digital camera is sufficient for basic blog photography. You can also get digital camera’s for under $200, but spending hundreds of dollars can be impractical for many new bloggers. Using your smart phone camera is a great option to take pictures. I take pictures with my iPhone 6 and 5 occasionally (The first image above was taken on my iPhone 5!). However, investing in a quality camera is only half the battle. Learning how to control basic functions such as the white balance, ISO and Aperture can really increase the quality of your photos.

2. Pay close attention to your lighting :-  It can make or break your picture. The best tip I can give is to take your pictures facing natural sunlight near a window. Preferably at morning or late evening, diffused by the curtains. I have learnt my lesson the hard way multiple times. My current house lacks a lot of natural lighting so my recent photographs have suffered significantly. Here is an example of one of my least favorite photos on my blog:

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It was taken in a dim room at night. Personally, I think it looks washed out, dull, and grainy. It was also a pain editing this photo because it was so dark to begin with!

But one of my older pictures, taken under a window with natural sunlight. Looks more natural and sharp. Here:

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So adequate lighting is very important in a picture.

3. Change your angle:- Experiment taking photos at different angles. It could be facing up, facing down or at 90 degrees. Placing your subject off the camera also adds an interesting and unique vibe to your photograph than straight on. Experiment with this the next time you take a picture and see if it comes out nice.

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4. Edit your photos:- I use apps on my iPhone and MacBook to edit my photos. Most pictures hardly ever come out perfect so it is good practice to edit your pictures before posting them on your blog. Here are my favorite iPhone and Macbook applications:

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  • VSCO :- Most people know this app, for a good reason! It is a great editing app that has a wide array of filters to use.
  • Canva :- This app superimposes texts on your photos. I recently discovered this app and I think it’s a valuable app for bloggers.

MacBook

  •  Photoscape X:- Most extensive editing app I know in the Apple Store. It’s also completely free! It’s amazing for editing photos on your laptop.

Those are my tips for improving your blog photography. I’m still a beginner and improving but I hope this was helpful and you enjoyed this post!

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My Everyday Makeup Routine

My everyday makeup is full faced with maximum coverage but very natural! I love wearing makeup everyday but since I am prone to foundation-induced pimples I now wear makeup 2-3 times a week.

Face:

  • Maybelline Fit Me Foundation – 355
  • Mac Mineralize Skin Finish Powder – Dark
  • Mac Mineralize Skin Finish Highlighter – Cheeky Bronze
  • L.A. Girl PRO Concealer – Chestnut and Toffee

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To begin, I apply the Maybelline Fit Me foundation all over my face to give me an even skin tone. I previously used Mac’s Studio Fix foundation but since I travelled to Florida, then moved back to Nigeria, I do not use it anymore because I started to break out. I suspect that the hot weather and this foundation do not agree with my skin.

Maybelline is the perfect foundation for hotter weathers because it is light, full coverage and doesn’t sink into your pores. The only down side is that it may not last as long as Mac’s studio fix throughout the day so you may need a touch up here and there. However, my skin has been popping so I’m not complaining!

I then apply the L.A Girl PRO Concealer under my eyes and I also apply this on my brows to sharpen them. I then set the foundation with my Mac Mineralize Skin Finish powder. This powder mattifies my face and gives a finished look. Finally, I apply the Mineralize Skin Finish Highlighter on my cheeks to give my cheeks a glowy, bronzy look.

Eyes:

  • Makeup Revolution Iconic 3 Redemption Eyeshadow Palette
  • Jordana FabuBrow – Dark Brown
  • Kiss Ever EZ Lashes- 01
  • Adventure Makeup Eye Tech Bold Liquid Eyeliner

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Next is my Eyes! I fill in my brows with the Jordana FabuBrow pencil and use Makeup Revolution Iconic palette on my eyelids. I usually go for bronzy, sultry eyeshadow looks so I use a lot of shimmery pinks and gold on most days because it’s cute and it goes with everything. I finish with the Adventure Makeup eyeliner and I usually go for a little wing.


Lips:

  • Mac’s Taupe Lipstick
  • Mac’s Bittersweet Lip Liner

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I finish off my makeup look with one of my favourite nude lipsticks. It is Mac’s Taupe lined with Mac’s Bittersweet lip liner. It is my favourite nude lipstick combo and it can be dressed up or down depending on your mood.

That is it for my everyday makeup look. Here is the finished look!

Please give this post a like if you enjoyed it and what does  your favorite everyday makeup look like?