Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Saturday to Saturnight with the Naked Palette

Hey everyone,

This post has some make up and some more heavy-going content below... don't say you weren't warned!

So, I have been having lots of fun playing with my UD Naked Palette at the weekends, as I'm sure you know by now!  On Saturday I went for a very neutral eye, as I wanted to make some use of my All for Eve red lipstick that I got in my May Glossy Box.... I believe this was a combination of 'Virgin', 'Sidecar' and 'Smog' but I am not 100% sure... I knew I should have wrote it down!

I used my long-neglected Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation, and had forgot how nice it is.  When I then decided to go out on Saturday evening for a few drinks, rather than start all over again, I just removed my eye makeup and lipstick, added a bit more bronzer and tried out a smokey eye using 'Creep' and 'Gunmetal', which I thought turned out really well, and demonstrates the versatility of the palette. I then used MAC lipstick in Creme D'Nude to keep the eyes as the focal point of my make up.

I sometimes don't know how much about my life to share on my blog... while the main focus is clothes, make up, beauty products, etc., I do like to mention things about me and my life, so that it's a more 'personal' read and, hopefully, you get to know me a little too.  I have 'met' so many of you lovely ladies through blogging too, and am in contact with you almost daily!  So I wonder sometimes where to draw the line between 'blog-appropriate' and 'no one gives a monkeys' material regarding my life.

I have decided to share something on here though, which some of you already know, so that I can explain a new direction with my blog.  A few weeks ago, I was informed that my contract at work will not be renewed.  I was devestated.  I really love my job; I quite enjoy the work and I like the people I work with.  Others at work had their hours reduced due to lack of business, and I knew that any future cutbacks would revolve around me, however I had thought it would perhaps be a reduction in hours too.  To be told that, due to financial reasons, I could not be kept on, was absolutely heart-wrenching.  Equivalent to a breakup; I cried in work, I cried all evening and the next day.  Then I decided crying was pointless and had to drag myself back on the job-hunt bandwagon. 

It is a scary time for me; from what I have seen so far, jobs are fewer on the ground than they were this time last year.  My contract finishes at the end of June, and it's going to take a miracle for me to find another job before then.  My main concern is not the fact that I had planned to go on holidays to America (bye bye Las Vegas...) or even having money for clothes/make up... it's my post-graduate loan repayments.  I pay back a significant sum each month, so if I can't find a job soon, then it will be my loan repayments that will suffer, and in turn my credit rating!  (I apologise for the money-talk; I know it's crude to discuss money and all that, but I am a very open person and this is a very stressful issue for me right now.)

Obviously I am going to save my arse off for my last few weeks in my job, but I need to take on any work I can in the near future to supplement my savings, so that should I end up unemployed for a while, all is not lost.  This is where we reach the crux of my story; sponsored posts *dun dun dunnnn!*  I read sponsored posts on blogs; sometimes I enjoy them, sometimes I don't.  Even when it's not stated, you can generally tell that it's a sponsored post.  Perhaps you thought you recognised a sponsored post on my blog lately... well, that because there have been.  

I was recently offered the opportunity to do some sponsored posts and, quite frankly, I was extremely torn.  I have expressed distaste on Twitter for blogs that revolve entirely about freebies and events, and the like.  I have nothing against people getting freebies, or going to blogging events, or even doing sponsored posts on their blog - these are all fantastic opportunities, of which I believe most bloggers would be extremely grateful.  My main point of contention is blogs that revolve entirely around freebies/events/sponsors and have little to no personal content, which I find quite sad.

While I did not want to appear a total hypocrite, I was being offered a fantasic opportunity at time when I needed it most. I did not wish to hide this; I thought I should test the water of sponsored posting before making it a more regular occurance.  I enjoy the challenge of these posts, and the chance to be introduced to new brands, thus I am going to do a sponsored post every once in a while.  I will only do those that are relevant to my blog content, and I will write below it that it is a sponsored post.  If you don't want to read them, you don't have to.  I emphasise though, that I will always be doing my usual, normal posts 99.9% of the time, and just a sponsored one every so often.  I am very worried that I might lose readers or induce nasty comments over this issue, and I sincerely hope that this is not the case; this opportunity has been a lifeline in the midst of my impending unemployment and I will always do my best to make ALL my posts as personal as possible.

I have rambled on for ages here; apologies for that!  If you have made it to the end you deserve a medal, or a cup of tea or something!  I hope you understand why I wanted to explain my dilemma regarding this though, it is not a decision I made lightly and my readers are my main concern.  You deserve the truth and I can only hope that it clarifies my decision for you.


Leanne Marie said...

What sets you apart from the other bloggers than always do sponsored posts is that you have taken the time to let your followers know & will feature things that relate to the blog and still do your regular posts.

I have personally have no problem with it. Youve gone about it the right way. :-)

Hope you find a new job soon! Sending lots of luck your way!


Lauren said...

@Leanne Marie - thanks so much :) that really means a lot to me. It's tough in the job market!! xx

Susan said...

As Leanne Marie has said, you've let your readers know which is great, but honestly it's your blog to do with as you wish, and others do it too. I don't think you're going to lose any readers, I didn't even notice you had done a sponsored post :) which means it was well written (as usual) and not just a post glorifying a company (which I've seen before).

It's good to read these, discover new brands/websites etc.


FitznBitz said...

Ah I don't really see the big deal with the whole "sponsored" thing as long as it's an honest review. People would want to chill a bit. Companies obviously want to get the word out about their product and vice versa in relation to bloggers wanting their blog to do well. Do what you want and as long as your honest (which I highly believe you are and will be) I will continue to read! :)

Jessica said...

I'm a regular reader and never noticed the sponsored post, which means you did it well! I don't think you'll lose any readers at all. Best of luck finding a new job very soon! xxx

Julie said...

your eyes look gorgeous here! and about the sponsored posts, i don't really see a problem, cause obviously your cautious enough to think about it hard and will be honest about it! i say go for it :) x

*Zoe* said...

You have a great blog and if you are offered the chance of a sponsored blog post or a few then you should take it - you deserve some recognition in such a good blog.

Love your Urban Decay Naked looks - I've rediscovered my love for mine recently - such a fab palette. xx

Hazel said...

Pop the kettle on, I got all the way to the end.
I'm sorry to hear about your job, it must be a very scary time, which is why there is no need to apologise for your decision to start writing sponsored posts. I think that they are fine as long as you remain true to yourself, which after reading this, I believe you will.
Remember - those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind.
I'll continue reading and commenting, sponsored or not.
Good luck!

Lauren said...

@everyone - thanks so much ladies :) your support means a lot. I will do my best to keep it all as relevant as possible! xx

Please may I? said...

Firstly worry not. You have been honest and frank and for people that care about you, that's more than enough. Everyone will wish you well and support you and your integrity.

Good luck on the job hunting, I am fully aware how hard it is out there at the moment.

X x

Lauren said...

@Please May I - Thanks so much :) x

Jenna Suth said...

You deserve to be rewarded for your blog in this way and you should not be worried about taking up this opportunity.

Honesty is the best policy afterall!

I wish you all the best in job hunting, I know how difficult it is.


daisychain said...

I used to be anti-sponsored posts, but now...I do them. And declare them. It's been helpful. My blog doesn't revolve nor rely on them and I'll only ever write about something that interests me/is relevant! xo said...

A girl's got to shop (and eat!) and as long as you're true to yourself I don't care if your posts are sponsored!

xXxStundonxXx said...

your make up looks great, both looks are amazing!

I don't see any problem at all with doing sponsored posts.

I'm so sorry to hear about all that is going on in your life at the moment.


Sophie - Country girl said...

First off, I adore your eyes, especially the night ones. Your makeup is always so fab. Big hugs, I totally see where you're coming from about taking on sponsored posts, thanks for giving us your personal reasons. I am none too familiar with sponsored beauty posts, but loyal followers stay loyal. I really hope you find a great job soon x

Natasha said...

I don't think there's anything wrong with sponsored posts at all. It's a way to introduce yourself and others to new brands and it's helpful for you as well, and I'm sorry your contract has finished, that's awful. I do hope you find something soon, it's not fair that so many people are just being cut off the way you have been. Good luck and thought it may not mean much now, try and think optimistically. Things will always get better. xxx

aprettyobsession said...

Hey hon like everyone else, I'm right behind you. I don't see any problem in them cos you are always honest about products :) best of luck with them and looking forward to your views. PS killer eyes in these pics

Lauren said...

Thank you SO MUCH, everyone, you are all so lovely. It really means a lot xxx

confessionsofamakeupaholic said...

Your EOTD's are fab! I especially love the first look. Cant wait to get my hands on a Naked Palette :)

I dont see any problem with doing sponsored posts. Its your blog and you should be able to write about whatever you want! Its a good chance to be given too so definatley make the most of it!

Best of luck with the job hunting. Its so tough at the moment but hopefully you'l find something very soon x