So I graduated with an Upper Second Class BA Honours Degree in English Literature on Friday and it was one of the best days of my life. After working so hard over the last three years, I’ve never felt so proud of myself and all of my friends for achieving our degrees! I went all out to get ready for the occasion and spent so much time on my appearance because I just wanted to be really happy with how I looked in the photos, so that in years to come I won’t grimace at my outfit/makeup choices. So I thought why not do a ‘get ready with me’ and let you know everything I used/wore on the big day!
In the morning I made sure to get up early enough to leave me plenty of time for getting ready; I was pretty nervous and rushing everything wasn’t going to help! To make things easier, I washed my hair and blow dried it the night before, as well as doing my nails to allow them to dry while I slept. For my nails I did a good old “MoYou Manicure” and used my Mandala plate in 07. As for the polish colours, I kept it simple and used ‘Metallic Maroon’ as my base which is a beautiful bronze colour and used ‘White Knight’ as my stamping polish. I’m really happy with how they turned out. I remember hearing someone mention that it’s a really good idea to have nice nails on your graduation day as they will look good when you hold your degree in the professional photos!
The first thing I did when I got up the next morning was to wash my face and brush my teeth. I then applied my skincare products. On this day I used Origins’ Original Skin Essence lotion to tone with because it minimises pores dramatically but still keeps the skin soft. I then followed by using my Origins Original Skin Renewal Serum as this too minimises pores and keeps the skin hydrated, making a smooth base for makeup. I finished with my Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrè to moisturise with as it’s very hydrating but sits well under makeup. As an extra step I also applied my Nuxe Reve de Miel lip balm at this point to give it time to work some magic on my dry lips before I applied lipstick.
Then, after letting those sink in for around fifteen minutes, I went onto makeup. I’m essentially going to just list all the products that I used rather than give too much detail as to how they fare because we’d be here until Christmas! Needless to say however, they are extremely loved products, otherwise I wouldn’t be using them on such a special day. If you want more detail then just let me know! A little tip that helped me so much though, was to lay all my makeup out neatly on my dresser so I could see everything I wanted to use and wouldn’t forget anything.
I started by using the Hourglass Ambient Light Correcting Primer in ‘mood light’ which makes makeup look incredible! It gives a sort of soft focus, lit from within look and just generally makes makeup look flawless. Then I used my trusty Estée Lauder Double Wear foundation; its full coverage and super long lasting so it was really the only choice for this day. I was also a little concerned with having an SPF in my foundation because the Plymouth ceremonies are on the Hoe and it was a gloriously sunny day that day. However, an SPF of 10 was not enough to give flashback and ensured I was somewhat shielded from the sun (the hat probably did a good job of that anyway!!). I used a Beauty Blender to apply this, giving me the ultimate flawless, full coverage base. I concealed using my Nars Creamy Concealer and used the Mini Beauty Blender to blend this out. Then I set my base with Mac’s Studio Fix pressed powder. I moved onto my brows at this point and used my Soap and Glory Archery 2-in-1 pencil and set that with Benefit’s ready, set BROW clear brow gel.
Moving onto the eyes which I wanted to be the showstoppers of the look. I primed my lids with Laura Mercier’s Eye Basics Eye Primer and made sure to give it a couple of minutes to sink in. I predominantly used my Charlotte tilbury palette in Dolce Vita for this look and I used all four shades in the pallete to create my eye look. However, I did also add in a bit of Mac’s ‘Handwritten’ eyeshadow (which I can’t find anywhere online and am starting to panic that it may have been discontinued!!!) to add more depth and darken the crease. I took Handwritten underneath the eye too so that they appeared larger. I also used Mac’s ‘Dazzlelight’ as a brow and inner corner highlight for the eyes. I used my favourite Fluidline gel liner by Mac in Blacktrack and did a nice feline flick to extend my eye shape a little more. Then I took a Rimmel Scandaleyes eyeliner in 005 Nude and used this along my lower waterline to make my eyes appear larger. I finished by curling my lashes and using Mac’s Prep and Prime Lash primer (which again cannot be found on any UK site!) and Mac’s Opulash mascara in Optimum Black. For the lower lashes I used Clinique’s Bottom Lash mascara because the brush is so tiny and perfect for picking up those tiny hairs and not overloading them with product.
For the cheeks I started with Kevin Aucion’s Sculpting Powder in light to contour the cheeks and add a little more warmth to my forhead and to contour under my chin and jawline. It was all about the definition for me! I used Mac’s blush in Margin which is a lovely “natural flush” kind of colour and at this point I sprayed some NYX Matte Setting Spray to set everything I’d done and increase its longevity. I then applied my Soft and Gentle highlighter from Mac to the tops of my cheekbones and down my nose and cupids bow. Finally I finished with my lips and primed them first with Mac’s Prep and Prime Lip. I used Mac’s lipstick in Spirit which is a lovely deep nude and applied a lipgloss over the top. So that’s the makeup done! I realise that I used a lot of products here but it was a very special and formal occasion so I wanted to look my absolute best. I mean I had all these products anyway so I may as well put them to good use.
Here is a close up of my makeup and particularly the eyes.
Next it was time to curl my hair and I used a Jose Eber Clipless Curling Iron. The barrel size of mine is 25mm and I find that it creates a really nice and natural curl. Once I’d finished my hair I used an Ojon hairspray which has been discontinued I think and I’m gutted!
It was then time to carefully slip into my dress. The dress I wore is by Chi Chi London and I got it on ASOS. I paired it with some nude ballet flats also from ASOS because I’m just not stable enough in heels and I had too many nightmares of falling over on the stage! I was pretty glad I went with flats in the end. Jewellery wise, I wore my grandmothers Mikimoto pearls which were kindly passed onto me a few years ago. This seemed like the perfect occasion to wear them. I also wore a pearl ring bought for me by my lovely Jack while we were on a holiday, so everything felt very sentimental and lovely.
So then all that was left to do was have a spritz of my favourite perfume and make sure I had my powder and lipstick in my handbag for touch-ups later. I would highly recommend packing some essentials in your handbag as the day is really intense and by the time you get round to have your professional photo (you know, the one that your parents are going to put on the mantel piece as soon as it arrives) you want to make sure you’re still looking fresh.
So to end this post I thought I would include a few of my favourite photos from the day! It really was one of the best days of my life and I am so thankful to all of the friends I’ve made for making the day- and generally the last three years at University- so special.
Thanks very much for reading everyone and sharing this special day with me! I hope you enjoyed this post.
P.S. A very happy birthday to my little blog who turned one a few days ago! I would just like to thank everyone for the overwhelming support and I hope you enjoy what is to come in the future! Since starting this blog I’ve had almost 2000 views in over 30 different countries and that absolutely blows my mind! Thank you everyone so much for sharing this with me. Much Love xxxx
A Little Disclaimer- All products featured have been purchased with my own money or have been gifts from friends and family. I am not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned or the links to websites that have been provided. All opinions are entirely my own and honest, I am not being paid to advertise these products. All pictures on this post have been taken by yours truly and as such must be approved by the author for any further or commercial use.