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Welcome to Penneys To Prada, a Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle blog written by Emer, an aspiring Web Designer and shopaholic. Enjoy!

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My First Experience With Professional Teeth Whitening - The White House Review

7 August 2017

Teeth whitening is something that's become so popular in recent years, with lots more companies bringing out at home kits and whitening strips. I've used my fair sharing of whitening strips in the past, but I've never had my teeth professionally whitened so when The White House * got in contact to ask if I'd like to try out their services, I thought why not! 

The Ordinary Skincare - Is It Worth The Hype?

3 August 2017

If you haven't heard of The Ordinary yet, where have you been hiding?! It's taken the beauty world by storm and everyone and their mother has been raving about their high quality products that are seriously budget friendly. Obviously since I love a good bargain, I went ahead and tried out quite a few of The Ordinary's products to see if they really lived up to the hype!

Am I Really A Feminist?

31 July 2017

Well hello there! I'm sure none of you have even noticed, but it's been three weeks since I last published a post, which is quite a long time for me and even writing now feels a little odd. The reasons behind my little break will have to wait for another post though because today I want to chat about feminism. 

Now I know that as soon as some of you read the f word above, you will have rolled your eyes and maybe even clicked out of this post, but I promise you this post not going to be the usual "life is unfair because I'm a woman and men are awful" kind of feminism post. In fact it's the complete opposite. 

For a while now I've been asking myself am I really a feminist for a few different reasons and the short answer is yes of course I am. I truly believe that women should be equal to men and treated as such, but if we just stuck to the short answer, there wouldn't be a blog post to write, would there?

Feminism has become such a trend lately, a popular thing to talk about, a fashion statement etc. and it's made me really question what exactly feminists are trying to achieve and the ways we're going about achieving our goals. 

Sure, I think it's a great thing that literally every shop on the high street has some kind of feminist slogan on at least three of their t-shirts and that discussions on feminism and equality are now a common everyday occurrence. However there are some sides and practices of feminism that I don't agree with, and that I think actually damage what we're trying to achieve.

I am currently studying Multimedia in college, and once I get my degree I will be entering the tech world as a young woman which contrary to what some feminist might want you to believe, actually gives me the upper hand over my male counterparts. Technology companies have been the frontrunners when it comes to achieving an equal work force, but I don't agree with the methods they use to do that which is one of the reasons I've been asking myself am I really a feminist?

Surely anything that achieves equality and helps women get the same jobs and pay as men is a good thing? Well if I'm being 100% honest, no, I don't think that hiring a woman purely because she's a woman and it'd 'look better' in terms of equality is a good thing. I want to be hired for my skills and knowledge, not because I'm a woman. The same goes for promotions and such, I'd only ever want to be promoted or given a raise in pay because the work I've done deserved it, not because I'm female. That's equality to me. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that every single woman getting hired by tech companies are being hired purely for their gender, because there are so many amazing, genius women in tech, but it is something that happens and it's something I really don't agree with.

Another reason I've been asking myself if I'm really a feminist is the whole idea that because I'm a woman, and a feminist, I can't disagree with what another woman says or does purely because she's a woman. The idea that we all have to love and agree with each other no matter what because we have enough going against us in the world without going against each other is something I really can't get on board with.

I'm a very strongly opinionated person (probably a bit too much at times) and if I see something I disagree with, there's no way in hell I'll go along with it and blindly agree just because it's a woman who has done or said whatever it may be. 

The quote "You can always tell who the strong women are. They are the ones you see building each other up, instead of tearing each other down." really gets under my skin. Of course I don't believe in tearing anyone down unnecessarily, but if I disagree with a woman, it doesn't mean I'm not strong, or that I'm not a feminist. 

The same can be said for not liking someone, there's a hell of a lot of people in this world and you can't like every single one can you? I've actually had a conversation about this recently and when I said I didn't like someone (for many reasons) who just happened to be female, the person I was talking to said that 'wasn't very feminist of me' and I just thought that's total BS. 

If I've seen enough of a persons character to know that I don't like them, it doesn't matter if they're female or male, I don't like them and that doesn't make me any less of a feminist. I'd never publicly display my dislike for them or tear them down because that's just not the kind of person I am, but I can still dislike them if they happen to be female and still be just as much of a feminist as I've always been.

'Feminazis' is a word that has come about recently and while I don't think that it's the nicest way to describe someone, there are feminists out there who take it just a bit too far and turn the fight for equality into man hating which isn't going to help anyone. It's counter-productive and I don't know about you, but I truly believe that in order to achieve equality, we have to have men on our side too.

Like I said at the beginning of this post, I think it's amazing to see feminism becoming such a normal, everyday thing because god knows how hard women have fought for so many years for equality. I am so happy that young girls are growing up in an age where strong independent women are celebrated. I just hope that we can stay focused on what we're trying to achieve, which at the end of the day is just good old equality, not women being superior to men, or men being superior to women. 

One of my favourite feminist quotes is from Kate Nash, you know that girl who sang 'Foundations' all those years ago? It sums up how I feel as a feminist perfectly:

“Feminism is not a dirty word. It does not mean you hate men, it does not mean you hate girls that have nice legs and a tan, and it does not mean you are a bitch or a dyke. It means you believe in equality.”

Outfit Details

T-shirt - Zara
Biker jacket, shoes & bag - Penneys

So there we have it, the long answer to the question 'Am I Really A Feminist' and for anyone who only clicked on this post to find out where my fab red bag is from, all the outfit details are above!

I think it's important to keep the discussion about feminism and all the thoughts and feelings that go along with it going so I'd love to hear any thoughts you have on this topic so be sure to leave a comment below or over on my Facebook page

As always thanks so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post!

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A Haul Full Of Bits & Pieces

12 July 2017

I didn't really know what to call this post, but it is full of bits and pieces that I've bought over the past month, so there you go! I'm still trying to stick to my 'only buy it if I really love it and will wear it' rule, and I'm doing pretty well, but sometimes I just can't resist the latest trends. It's not all bad though because my purchases have resulted in today's haul, so I hope you enjoy it!

New In Beauty #5

9 July 2017

It's time for another 'New In: Beauty' post! If you're not familiar with these posts, make sure you check out the others (along with some other beauty posts) here. Basically these posts are a round up of the new beauty products, whether they're new releases or products I've just never tried before, that I've loved using recently. There's a few products I'm extra excited about in this post so I hope you enjoy it!

The Ordinary

The Ordinary is a skincare brand that popped up on my radar last year, but it's taken me until now to finally try it out and I just wish I'd done it sooner! The brand have a very interesting (and affordable) take on skincare and they basically offer products with just one or two skincare ingredients in them so you can pick and choose and really tailor your routine to suit your skin.

For example, one of my skincare concerns is the brightness of my skin, so I picked the Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% because it is designed to 'brighten the skin tone while visibly improving the evenness of skin texture and reducing the look of blemishes.' The Ordinary have loads of products to choose from and their website (here) has a breakdown of what they all do and they also have some routines you could follow if you need a little guidance. 

So far I am really really impressed with the three products I've been using. The Azelaic Acid has really improved the texture and brightness of my skin, the Niacinamide & Zinc has kept my skin clear of any breakouts and kept my oily skin a lot calmer and the Advanced Retinoid is helping to keep my skin unclogged and will hopefully help in the long run with aging!

Like I mentioned above, The Ordinary's products are really affordable with most of them costing under €10 and so far they seem to be really good quality products, even the packaging is gorgeous. I've already got three other products on my wish-list from them so I'd definitely recommend trying them out.

Vichy Idéalia Peeling & Aqualia Thermal Serum

I'm having a bit of a love affair with Vichy at the moment. I was lucky enough to get a very generous bag of Vichy goodies from the Xposé Beauty Bus event last month and now there's three or four of their products that I always use in my skincare routine and they really do a fantastic job. 

If you try out one product from this entire post, make it the Idélia Peeling (which is currently on sale, just follow the link). This is one of the only products I've ever used on my skin that gave me visible results in just a few days. It's main ingredient is Glycolic acid which is actually a miracle worker. It exfoliates dead skin cells so that fresher, brighter skin can be revealed and I'm kicking myself for not adding it into my skincare routine sooner. I apply this with on a cotton pad to my skin at night after I've cleansed and although I have sensitive skin, it doesn't cause any irritation at all. 

Next we have Vichy's Aqualia Thermal Serum (which is also currently on sale). I first got into using a serum in my routine when I tried out the Boots Botanics All Bright serum which they've sadly discontinued and using a serum has now become even more important to me than using a moisturiser. This one in particular from Vichy is like a big gulp of water for the skin and much like the Idélia Peeling, it's made such a visible difference to my skin!

Kevin.Murphy Doo.Over Hairspray

When I was in The Space getting my hair done (catch up on all of that here), Lisa used a whole host of Kevin.Murphy products on my hair, and reminded me that I actually had a mini bottle of the Doo.Over hairspray in my drawers back home! I have quite fine, flat hair, so this hairspray with gives the hair a bit of texture as well as hold is perfect when I curl my hair to stop it falling too fast and it smells divine!

Dr. PawPaw It Does It All Hair Treatment

I recently had a meeting with the lovely girls from Dr. PawPaw and was introduced to this hair product. I already use the original balm daily to keep my lips hydrated so I had high hopes for this product and I'm happy to say I wasn't disappointed. It promises to be a 7 in 1 product that will protect your hair from heat, reduce split ends, detangle, reduce frizz, help with blowdrying and add shine. Now that sounds like a bit of a reach but I promise it's not. This is genuinely an absolute miracle product and the mango and coconut fragrance will leave your hair smelling incredible too which is even better. 

Urban Decay Perversion Mascara

I thought that Too Faced's Better Than Sex mascara was my absolute favourite ever, until I tried Urban Decay's Perversion mascara... Whilst the Too Faced mascara is amazing for giving your lashes volume and length, I found I had to apply quite a few layers to get the effect I wanted, whereas Perversion gives almost instant drama. It's really good at layering too and doesn't clump at all and the staying power is second to none, which is brilliant because there's nothing worse than getting to the end of the day and realising your mascara has all but flaked off.

Benefit Boi-ing Brightening Concealer

Benefit are definitely one of my most favourite make-up brands and I feel like in the last few months they've really stepped up their game. They've just had a big revamp of their concealer collection and the Brightening Concealer (which has the same formula as their beloved Erase Paste) is a god send for those annoying under eye circles. Thanks to the red/orange/yellow tones in the concealer, it perfectly combats the blue/purple tones of under eye circles and leaves your eyes looking very bright and awake even if you've only had a few hours of shut eye!

The Body Shop Shade Adjusting Darkening Drops

This was a product I was seriously dubious of at first. I've seen a few brands bring out similar products and thought it was all just a gimmick but these genius little drops are a game changer. I am terrible for matching my foundation to my skin, I'm either too pale, or too orange and it's just all very stressful. Especially in the summer I find it even harder because I tan quite easily, so all of my foundations (even my darker ones) are too light. I've been using The Body Shop's Darkening Drops for a few months now and they're honestly amazing. They don't change the consistency or finish of your foundation at all but really help to darken it to the shade you need. Obviously I haven't tried the Lightening Drops yet, but once Winter swings round I'll be sure to let you know how I find them too.

Wet'n'Wild Liquid Catsuit Matte Lipstick in shade 'Rebel Rose'

Meet my new favourite liquid lipstick, and it costs less than most medium caramel cappuccino! Wet'n'Wild may be a 'budget beauty' brand, but every product I've tried from them is seriously high quality and this liquid lipstick is no exception. First of all this colour is just the perfect 'my lips but better' shade, it's not one bit drying, it doesn't flake off and I just really love it so if you're looking for a liquid lipstick that won't break the bank, check this one out!

Are there any beauty products that have caught your attention recently, or have you tried any of the products mentioned in this post? I hope you enjoyed it and thanks so much for reading!

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