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Sunday, 1 March 2015

Top February Reads.

From now until forever, I will remember February 2015 as the month I got my blogging mojo back. I was stuck in a bit of a rut - and was crazily distracted by both my personal and university life. Every time I sat down to write a post, I felt distinctly uninspired. Like I had nothing to say anymore, nothing interesting to share with my readers. Wanting to blog and not knowing where to start is scary - hey, it even stops people from diving into this crazy online world, known as the blogosphere, in the first place. You become plagued with insecurity. Why even bother? Who's reading this anyway? The more you start thinking in this negative mindset, the harder it becomes to get writing again.
I love Bloglovin', I can't gush about it enough. The amount of wonderful blogs I've discovered through this platform over the past eight months is crazy to think about. It's such a great tool for connecting with the blogging community. Like most users, I have the little widget in the top right hand corner of Google Chrome which very kindly informs me of how many unread posts I have waiting for me. But when I fell off the bandwagon, every time I opened my internet I felt like that little '99+' Bloglovin' widget was mocking me. I felt like an outsider looking in on some great party that I hadn't been invited to. Except by giving up blogging, I'd uninvited myself. So I took the plunge and began going through my archives, I'd missed something crazy like 3,000 posts. I marked them all as 'read' and began again. Just like that. It took me a while to realise that I was the one excluding myself - I was responsible for making myself feel like I wasn't good enough. Of course writer's block is going to happen every once and a while, but it's how you respond to it that makes you a better blogger.
So like the little blogger addict that I am, here are my favourite inspiring reads from the past month.

1. What Olivia Did | Little Denim Dress

Just like Olivia, I fell head over heels for Alexa Chung's collaboration with AG Jeans. The denim skirt dress stole my heart but alas, I don't have £500 to spare. Although, I'm pretty sure the star wears it in her 'Great British Bake-Off' appearance this week. When Olivia debuted this 'Miss. Selfridge' on her blog this month, I was gutted to see that the dress had sold out online. Typical. But like the true shopaholic that I am, I double-checked the availability in stores and sure enough there was one in stock in my local branch. I couldn't resist. I hopped on the bus to West Quay almost immediately and bought this as a little pre-birthday, I-passed-my-first-term treat. Worth every penny.

2. Vivianna Does Make-Up | My Super Long-Lasting #BeautyChatLIVE Face

One of the highlights of my month was making a quick overnight trip to Brighton for #BeautyChatLIVE. Meeting Anna and Lily in 'real life' and asking their advice on running a blog while studying was one of those 'pinch me' moments. Add a NARS counter and champagne into the mix and you have my dream evening. In this post, Anna outlines her go-to products for the tour. She went for a very natural look for the Brighton event - something I'll be trying to emulate in coming weeks, no doubt.

3. Lily Melrose | Keeping Motivated as a Blogger

Because I spent my blogging hiatus avoiding Bloglovin' like the plague, I missed out on this post when I really could have used it. I don't know what I've been doing the past eight months of my life because I only just stumbled upon llymlrs this month. And I think I've developed a bit of a blogger crush - I love that she posts everyday and no matter how short or sweet, her blog is full of personality. Personally, I think the most successful blogs give you a sense of the person behind the pixelated image. From a girl who's in the blogosphere for the long-run, her tips for keeping motivated are flawless.

'Hello Giggles' was one of the first blogs I followed back in June and its content never fails to amuse me. After all, it was 'Hello Giggles' which made my borderline obsessed with #thedress - there's a day of my life I'll never get back. But this post about long-distance friendships really struck a cord with me. My best friend, a girl I practically consider a sister, moved to Australia at the end of 2013 and I miss her everyday. Although it was definitely the right thing for her to do, and it's amazing to see how well she's doing for herself out there, sometimes all you need is a cuddle from your best friend. The plan is for her to move back someday, but for now we're trying to do the best we can when the geography and time zones are against us!

February raced past and I've got just nine days left of being a reckless, carefree teenager. Eeek. For now, I'm trying my hardest to create daily content that ranges from beauty, to fashion, to lifestyle. Because beauty review after beauty review would just be boring. February also saw me put down a deposit on a new blogger design which I could not be more excited about if I tried. But most importantly, this month saw me fall in love with blogging again,

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