Using Cotton Backdrops in Blog Photography

When I buy a backdrop for my photography work, it’s a multi-use purchase. I can use it for blog photography or I can use it for my portrait photography. A backdrop very rarely has one use in my world – maybe because I’m savvy or maybe I’m just cheap. Either way, whenever I do add one to my collection, I always tend to sway towards backdrop paper or vinyl. I’ve never tried material backdrops, which tend to be made from cotton, as I presumed they’d crease easily.

So, when I was offered the opportunity to test and review a cotton backdrop, I was delighted. Courtesy of iBackdrop, I was gifted a backdrop in exchange for a review on my blog.

I ordered a simple white brick backdrop with a pink rose pattern – it’s pretty enough to add something special but it’s also simple enough for me to use it in blog photography and portrait photography. I have hopes of using it in my newborn photography too! I did have a hard time choosing which pattern I wanted because the range of backdrops on the website is amazing – from simple patterns such as wood walls and floors to balloons, bunting, scenic views, fairy woods and dinosaurs.

iBackdrop Rose White Brick Photography BackdropiBackdrop Rose White Brick Photography Backdrop

Whilst a lot of the backdrops are more suited to portrait photography and children’s photography (such as cake smashes), there are a lot of options for bloggers too. I regularly use wood vinyl off cuts for my blog photography, which takes up quite a lot of space. Instead, using a cotton backdrop, which can be folded for easy storage, would save a lot of room and maybe allow you to have a wider range of backdrops for blog photographs!

Here’s a sample of just some of the backdrops they sell:

BackdropsBackdropsBackdrops

The material itself is lovely. It didn’t arrive creased, which I was very surprised about, and it actually feels a lot more like velvet than cotton. It’s a heavy material, meaning it will hang nicely and it’s not remotely see-through which is a problem I’ve seen in other, cheaper backdrops. The pattern itself is not as sharp as I would have liked, but as a backdrop doesn’t tend to be the focus of an image, that’s not a problem at all. In blog product photography, for example, the focus would be on the products, with a lovely shallow depth of field to blur out the background.

Blog photography is a huge part of blogging and any way of being able to improve it is always welcome. People tend to stick with what they know or what a lot of other people also use, which doesn’t easily allow for change! Cotton backdrops are an ideal substitute for the whole range of options that bloggers have out there, whether you’re using wrapping paper, coloured A4 sheets, vinyl cut offs or your shiny white desk. You can add so much more variety to your photography with these cotton backdrops.

Sleek Matte Me Lipsticks iBackdrop Cotton Backdrop

divider

I’m really happy with this backdrop and I’m sure it will be regularly used in both my blog and portrait photography.

If you’d like to have a look at their range of backdrops, you can find them at www.ibackdrop.com.

signature

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

I was gifted a backdrop from iBackdrop in exchange for a review. As always, all views are my own. 

The Wall Street Crash

My lovely friend Kat, who’s a qualified makeup artist and is studying a degree in the subject, recently asked me if I’d be the model for a 1920’s makeup competition that she was taking part in. Now, if you don’t already know, I’m ridiculously uncomfortable in front of the camera. I can tolerate the odd “Matthew, take a photograph of me in front of this beautiful landmark” type thing, because I know it’s my camera and I could always delete it anyway. Again, when I’m feeling pretty fly (hands up if you just mumbled “for a white guy”), I’ll take a cheeky selfie. But, the idea of putting that power into the hands of a professional, meaning I’d be unable to double check and delete any images that made me look bad, gave me the jitters. She’s my friend, though, and I was absolutely over the moon to help her out. Either way, I got to dress up as a rich 1920’s lady of leisure and that was pretty exciting.

For me, a full face of makeup is made up of my trusty mascara, winged eyeliner, translucent power on my nose and a bit of red lippy. Being put into the hands of a makeup artist, who literally has a suitcase full of makeup with her, was pretty daunting. I was met with primer, foundation, a ridiculous number of different eye shadows, false lashes and lots of other things that I don’t even know the name of. Honestly, it felt weird but I definitely wouldn’t look too out of place during the 1920’s.

img_9649img_9658img_9659

The brief was “Wall Street Crash”. Kat’s plan was to do a full face of 1920’s inspired make-up, before sitting me down alongside lots of other models, as all of the makeup artists performed their special effects magic. I was expecting a pretty tense atmosphere but I actually had a really good time – Kat covered me in fake blood, cuts and bruises, whilst I just sat there and watched the world go by. There was such a range of different looks going on in the competition room. Some makeup artists went for realism, like Kat, and some took it to the other (far) end of the spectrum with stilettos in eyeballs or shards of glass sticking out of the model’s skin.

Kat’s overall look was incredible. It showed how I was trampled during the people’s rush to the banks, hence the huge bruising to one side of my face. It looks bloody painful, right!?

img_9693img_9687img_9684

Ouch…

divider

Didn’t she do such a good job!? If you want to have a look at her makeup artist Facebook page, you can click here! She posts all of her makeup work – from beauty makeup to special effects – on this page, so it’s definitely worth a like.

What do you think of the final look?

signature

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

Patisserie de Bain: Creme Pâtissière Review

If you’ve ever wanted to rub the sweet scent of vanilla all over your body, then you’re going to love me for introducing you to Patisserie de Bain.

I picked up this gorgeous gift set (which includes a shower gel, a body souffle and a vanilla-scented body scrubber) from Superdrug a couple of weeks ago. It was actually a free gift for buying two selected skincare products and I didn’t even realise what a little gem I had my hands on until I got home.

Patisserie de Bain: Creme Pâtissière Review

Before I even gave the products a sniff, I did a quick bit of research to check if the company was cruelty-free, vegan friendly and/or owned by a nasty parent company. I was over the moon to discover that not only are all of the products cruelty-free but they’re almost all suitable for vegans. The exception to the rule here is the lip balm, which does include beeswax. Routine checks, done.

Simply opening up these products was heavenly. The vanilla scent hit me immediately and it’s really, really mouthwateringly realistic. Both products smell equally as beautiful, too. The shower gel does take a bit of effort to lather up nicely, but you really can’t complain too much as the scent lasts on your skin all day. The body souffle, which is just a fancy way of describing a body butter or body cream, is absolutely perfect. It’s thick, it’s moisturising and it dries quickly, leaving you smelling fantastic.

I’m in love with this set. I, stupidly, presumed that these scents would be the company’s only choices but I was so wrong. There’s a massive range of other scents, including lemon bon-bons, cranberries and cream and orange zest. You bet I’ll be going back for some more!

divider

Have you ever tried any Patisserie de Bain products?

signature

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Superdrug Store Opening, Beverley

Being a cruelty-free kitty, Superdrug is my idea of heaven when it comes to buying new skincare and cosmetics. Alongside the shelves of cruelty-free brands, Superdrug even has it’s own completely cruelty-free and vegan line of cosmetics and skincare called B. So, as you can imagine, I was super pleased to be invited to the opening of a new Superdrug store at Beverley’s Flemingate shopping centre.

Beverley Flemingate Superdrug Store

Superdrug stores are always super colourful and this Beverley branch isn’t any different. It’s pretty pink in there! As expected, there are aisles full to the brim with practically everything health and beauty related but it’s not the pretty aisles that make this store stand out, it’s the beautifully mirrored back wall, full of high-street make-up. Each stand towers around six-foot tall and displays such a range of cosmetics that any lipstick lover would throw a wobbly just looking at them all.

Towards the back of the store, you’ll find a Beauty Bar. This little gem offers eyebrow threading and tinting right there in the store. If I hadn’t recently tamed my own eyebrows, I’d of loved to try this out for myself! With it being at the back of the store, it’s nice and out of the way too so if you’re a bit shy (like me!) you wouldn’t be put off.

Beverley Flemingate Superdrug Store

divider

Whilst I was there, I also picked up up some goodies for myself. (How could I resist?)

I have tried a couple of Superdrug’s  cruelty-free ‘B’ products in the past, but I hadn’t ventured into their skincare range. My trip to this brand spanking new store was the perfect excuse to try something new, really, so as well as a Makeup Brush Cleanser, I picked up the B. Confident Day Cream and the B. Nourished Night Serum. 

Superdrug B Skincare Product Review

I’m still in my early twenties, so I’m not particularly covered in wrinkles but I do have the tenancy to scowl or smile way too enthusiastically. Before these little lines get any worse, I thought it would be a good idea to try something out. Both the day and the night creams are supposed to help with the prevention of early signs of aging. It’s only been a week or so since I began using them but I’ll be sure to share the news if these end up being miracle workers.

Either way, they both smell fantastic and they soak into the skin super quickly. This is especially a bonus for the night serum, as you don’t wanna be going to bed with a sticky, moist face! As far as face creams go, they’re really lovely.

divider

I really enjoyed my trip to Flemingate! Whenever me and Matthew go to Beverley, we always end up gravitating towards this place because who doesn’t love a shopping centre?

signature

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

I purchased these products with a complimentary gift card for visiting the store. As always, all views are my own. 

Lush Review | Pumpkin

Some bath bombs are loved for the spectacular shows they put on in the tub and some are loved for their simplicity – Lush’s Pumpkin bath bomb, part of the Halloween collection, is the latter.

Pumpkin doesn’t spill out a myriad of colours. It doesn’t leave your skin feeling silky and moisturised. Once it’s plopped in the tub, it doesn’t even stick around for very long. Yet, despite all that, this Halloween exclusive is the perfect accompaniment for an autumn soak.

Lush Review Pumpkin Bath Bomb

Divider

As the name suggests, the bath bomb looks like a pumpkin! You don’t often see character themed bath bombs so it’s definitely an eye-catching product. It screams Halloween and, if anything, it’s worth picking up as a seasonal treat just to get your spooky fix. The colour though is very simple – like the resulting bath water, it’s a basic shade of orange.

What makes this bath bomb so special is the smell. It smells like autumn! It’s sweet (thanks to the vanilla extract), spicy (hello, cinnamon) and incredibly warming. If that doesn’t sound perfect for these colder nights, then I don’t know what does.

Lush Review Pumpkin Bath Bomb

Although Pumpkin doesn’t leave your skin feeling super moisturised like a lot of Lush bath bombs, it melts all your aches and pains away. When I jumped into the bath, I slowly laid back and let out a very dramatic groan of approval – it’s incredible. This is completely down to the warming cinnamon bark old extract, making this ideal for those achy, tired autumn nights.

Lush Review Pumpkin Bath Bomb

If you’re looking for a taste of autumn for £3.95, give this a try.

Divider

Have you tried Pumpkin yet?

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Halloween Lush Haul

It’s time! Yesterday, Lush’s Halloween products were released in my local store and I couldn’t have snapped them up any quicker. Straight from work, I jumped onto a bus and then practically ran to the store. In all honesty, I presumed they’d have ran out by the time I got there but, luckily for little me, the products were still piled high. Like always, I almost drooled upon arrival. The smell is intoxicating. Walking into a Lush store is one of my favourite things in life – those colours, the smell, the atmosphere and the fantastic staff make shopping there an actual experience.

Alongside lots of other fellow Lushies around the world, I’ve been eagerly anticipating this release for a long time. The return of Lord of Misrule, my all time favourite holiday exclusive product, is a personal highlight, for sure. I previously caught a sneak peak of the Halloween products when they were leaked, not too long ago, and lots of them caught my eye. I imagined I’d pretty much buy the whole store. However, I did refrain from buying one of everything and, instead, I stuck to a handful of products that I was eager to try.

Lush Halloween Haul

So, what lovely Lush Halloween goodies did I pick up this year?

Monsters’ Ball:

I love themed bath bombs! They’re a bit of a guilty pleasure really. Whenever a silly or strange looking product is released, I snap one up. Monsters’ Ball looks like a pink Mike Wazowski and what’s better than that? I’ve already seen a sneak peak at the show this bath bomb puts on in the tub. I can’t wait to use it.

Lord of Misrule:

Lord of Misrule is a showstopper. It’s a must-have Halloween bath bomb and if you haven’t yet tried it for yourself I urge you to treat yourself. It’s a beautiful combination of spicy, earthy and vanilla scents. That smell is quite something, but it’s the performance it gives in the bath that makes this product stand out.

Pumpkin:

Pumpkin combines spicy cinnamon with the sweetness of vanilla and, I think, it’s the most pleasant smelling of the Halloween products.  It smells like autumn.

Autumn Leaf:

This is one of the most beautiful bath bombs I’ve ever seen. It’s made up of jumbles of baby blues, yellows, oranges and pinks. It has a very fresh scent which only emphasises the autumnal feel of this bath bomb. Look at the size of it, in comparison to the others! It’s massive.

Divider

I’m super pleased with my mini Halloween haul. I managed to snap up some gorgeous smelling and incredible looking bath bombs that I just can’t wait to try! It really is starting to feel like autumn now. Roll on, Halloween!

Have you tried any of Lush’s Halloween products yet?

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Lush Review | Fizzbanger Bath Bomb

Lush is practically famous for the extravagant displays that the majority of their bath bombs perform. The Fizzbanger Bath Bomb is very simple in appearance, but that doesn’t make it boring. It’s a citrus delight! The beautiful yellow outer shell protects a centre of bright blue, which fizzes and pops thanks to all that popping candy – the resulting colour is a toxic lime green.

I absolutely loved the final colour of the water from this bath bomb! I don’t recall ever having a green bath before, so it was a bit of a novelty too. Green is my favourite colour so I was sure to love it, but it definitely was a shock. Looking at that lovely yellow bath bomb, you wouldn’t imagine it creates something so green!

Lush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb Review

Divider

The scent of Fizzbanger is what stands out to me the most. It has a very strong citrus smell on first sniff, but then you begin to pick up the apple and spicy undertones it has. It’s kind of like a sweet apple pie, with a little bit of cinnamon! It’s really lovely. I found that the scent didn’t last the entire time I was in the bath, but it lasted long enough to leave its scent on my skin which is a big thumbs up from me.

It’s a slow fizz meaning it sticks around for much longer! It also means there’s enough time for a very simple display. Unlike the multitude of colours a lot of other Lush bath bombs produce, Fizzbanger sticks with yellows and blues. They can swirl together like a Catherine wheel or the overpowering yellow can creates little rays of sunshine in the tub. Either way, it puts on a good show.

Once the bath bomb has completely fizzed away, you’re left with the lime green resulting water and a white creamy layer on the surface. This is incredibly moisturising so I sat there soaking myself in it’s loveliness for a very long time – it was one of the nicest baths I’ve had in a while! It’s a pretty all-around great bath bomb to be honest. I do highly recommend it.

Lush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ReviewLush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ReviewLush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ReviewLush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ReviewLush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ReviewLush Fizzbanger Bath Bomb Review

Lush’s Fizzbanger is a simple looking bath bomb with a simple but effective performance once it’s plopped in the tub and a very, very beautifully sweet scent. I can imagine this will go down a treat in the autumn months!

Divider

Have you ever tried this bath bomb? What did you think?

Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Pinterest | Bloglovin’

You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills