Tom Ford Velvet Orchid Eau de Parfum – Review

I have, for a long time, wanted to buy a perfume that represented me, that was unique, and that would become my signature fragrance. Of course, as I often do, I started my search online and was intrigued by the aura of love/hate surrounding Tom Ford fragrances.

These fragrances are, how to say, particularly unique and have to be worn by people who are just that. The ones I have tried are everything but sweet and nice. They are strong and in your face and everything all at once. In the end, I decided to choose Velvet Orchid. I did also try White Patchouli, but it was way too unisex for me, and Black Orchid, which posed the same problem, but it also reminded me of sad days, in a way, and decided I did not want that.

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According to the Tom Ford website:

TOM FORD VELVET ORCHID IS AN ORIENTAL FLORAL THAT EVOLVES THE CARNAL GRANDEUR AND SEDUCTIVE POWER OF THE ICONIC TOM FORD BLACK ORCHID INTO AN UBER-FEMININE FRAGRANCE LAVISHED WITH NOTES OF COOL CITRUS, DRAMATIC PETALS, HONEY AND RUM.

I have to completely agree. The top notes, that hit you first, are cool citrus and bergamot. After a while, they merge into a mix of velvet orchid and rum, to then fade away into a vanilla background.

This is a very sexy and seductive fragrance. It is particular, yes, not everyone can wear it well, but I find it is so so alluring and noticeable in a sea of other perfumes. The lasting power is very good, I can still smell it on my wrists 10-12 hours after applying it. The sillage, which is the degree to which the fragrance lingers in the air, is pretty good as well. It only takes a gust of wind or a hair flip and everyone who is close enough can smell it.

Not to speak of the bottle, which is the quintessence of glamour and makes me feel very special every time I pick it up.

The cost, on the other hand, is slightly higher than other perfumes, but it is lower than most Tom Ford fragrances. I paid €140 for the 100ml bottle and I see it as an investment, as something that will make me happy in the long haul and help build my persona.

Score: 9/10 (because lasting power and sillage are never enough for me)

Thank you for reading.

xx

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New Year, here we go – 2017 in retrospect

Damn, it’s been a full year. I started the year in Australia, went to NYC in March, got my diploma from high school at the beginning of July, started University in September, and now here I am, stressing over exams. All of that leaving out falling in and out of love, in and out of friendships.

The more I look back, the more I see how much I have changed, as a person and as a woman. I have grown indeed: I get stressed less about social activities, I totally stopped caring about what others have to say about me, I started loving myself even more than before (is that even possible? I adore myself), I acquired the habit of cutting toxic people off, I started giving out more compliments, I am more quiet now, choosing to listen more attentively, I put myself on a pedestal and choose who I let get close to me.

I have grown to be an even more acquired taste than before, harsher around the edges, at least from an outside perspective, but that aids in the protection of my inner layers: call it learning from past mistakes.

What my hopes are for the coming year? More possibilities to learn, more experience, better enviroments, a better me. I hope to grow to be even more selective, quicker to understand others’ intentions, more focused on my studies and less on other useless things.

I hope the same and much more of what you wish for to you too. New beginning, new goals, new chances.

Happy New Year.

Xx

Reflecting

I always get in my feelings as soon as the festive season starts, from Christmas Eve until the New Year. This year though, it has been tougher to see the silver lining. Let me explain.

The festivities are always a bit lonely for me. Yes, on Christmas Eve I was with my parents and it was nice and I appreciated it, since some people do not even get to have that. But we are a small family: it is just the three of us here. The rest are scattered across the globe. I am also an only child, so that doesn’t help.

Christmas Day itself was lonely. The more I scrolled through Insta and watched InstaStories, the more I saw friends with their extensive families, enjoying their company, eating, and playing. I was alone, with my phone, my dog, a cup of tea, Anastasia (the animated film), and Love Actually. For the first time in a looooong couple of months I felt truly alone. But I noticed, both on tumblr and Twitter, that people made posts of solidarity for people who, like me, were lonely or alone these Holidays. It was indeed nice seeing how good people can be.

I am sure I was not the only one who felt like this and I want to say, and reassure you, that everything is temporary. This time will pass, just like everything else, and everything will go back to normal or, for a change, will become even better. All I can say is that you should try and stay busy, be it by watching films, going out for walks, or studying/working.

So keep sipping your tea, watching your rom-coms and scrolling through Insta. You’ve got this, patient wolf.

Thank you for reading and have a merry ending of 2017.

xx

Happy Holidays – 2017

I honestly and truthfully cannot believe how fast this last quarter of 2017 went by. I did not even feel November pass by and now here we are, already celebrating (or not) the Holidays.

Now, for a university student, the Holidays do not have the same appeal they once had, since, at least for me, finals start on the 10th of January, therefore I have to study, study, study and study. Yes, I will try to take time off at least on the 25th and 31st, but besides that, I need to start grinding now, since the finish line is so close and expectations are so high.

For whomever celebrates any sort of holiday and for those who do not, I hope you enjoy your time off with your dearest ones and that you cherish every accomplishment and second of these days. A special “good luck” goes to those who work in retail and any other type of business that stays open during the holidays. May you find the time to drink a nice glass of wine and toast for good fortune.

Happy Holidays, from me to you.

xx

Lauren Ralph Lauren Nora Bag Review

Attention everybody, I got myself a fancy bag. Or at least what I would call fancy. Beware, it’s neither Gucci nor Prada, so if that is what you are looking for, it was nice meeting you.

It’s been a while since I decided that I needed a good, sturdy, elegant bag to take with me during “important” (aka slightly diverse from the ordinary) day activities as well as for going out at night, at dinner and such.

I set a budget and found the one. THE ONE. I saw it on Zalando and fell in love with it that instant. It is a real leather black handbag by Lauren Ralph Lauren (a less expensive branch of the Ralph Lauren empire). It retailed at €260 but me being me, so very pragmatic, I found a discount code (by typing “zalando discount code” on Google, do it) and got it for around €230. Delivery, as per usual, was flawless (courtesy of UPS); it arrived the day after I got the delivery confirmation email.

I have already worn this bag out twice and it is sooooo comfortable and versatile. It feels and looks very luxurious and improves a basic outfit tenfold.

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Detail wise, it has the logo on a moderately sized attachment and also on the bag itself and the zippers. The leather on the outside is not smooth, so it will not scratch as easily. Inside, the material is on the nude/beige side of the spectrum and it has one pocket with a zipper and two zipper-less ones. It came with a very nice and delicate dust bag (that I put it in when I am not using it).

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I must say, I love this bag with every fibre of my body and I am so so glad I invested in such a piece.

Score: 10/10

Thank you for reading.

University Life Update and Advice – December 2017

Remember how I was so positive and excited back in this post? Yep, things changed. Exams are nearing (my first one is on the 10th of January) and I am scared af. I have indeed started studying but I already feel like I am behind (which is particularly accurate).

True, I should have started studying as soon as the semester started but being big-headed and egocentric, my ego got the best of me and now here I am, swimming through despair. Okay, I might be exaggerating; there are people who are in way worse situations than me, but still, I feel a bit lost.

As far as Math goes, I think I am at a pretty good point. Some things are new for me too, but I get the mechanics behind them and all it takes is a bit of practice.

Business Fundamentals, on the other hand, is a bit more complicated: I am at a good point with the theory, but accounting is a whole another beast that I still have to truly face head-on. Just like math, getting good at accounting takes time and practice, which is why I will truly study it during my Winter Holidays.

Lastly, Public Law is…boring? I mean, it flows well and the professor is awesome, but it is not my cup of tea. Luckily, this exam is at the end of January so I have a lot of time to study and repeat out loud the most important content.

Now, for some advice:

  • start studying as soon as possible: seriously, it is never too early to start. Do not reschedule, do not say “I’ll do it later”, just do everything as soon as possible, while also doing it well;
  • do the reading: if a professor tells you what you have to read up on until next lesson or leaves you an exercise to do at home, do it. They do that for a reason and you will feel accomplished;
  • study anytime, anywhere: I take the train everyday, back and forth, to and from Rome, and those 80 minutes total can be spent studying or reading something helpful;
  • it is okay if you cannot do it, for once: everyone has their breaking point, everyone gets tired, every woman gets pms and feels dead on the inside. Rest is good, as long as you are recharging to push harder next time;
  • be nice: simply put, be a nice person, be it to your peers or to professors, do not act superior; everyone is in the same boat as you and professors are there to help and teach, so do not think that they are out to get you and catch you unprepared.

This is what I have to say for now. I will probably update you guys after my exams are over, hopefully bringing you good news.

Than you for reading, once more.

xx

Gymshark Seamless Leggings – Review

Gymshark has been growing as a brand loved by YouTubers and Instagram influencers for the past 5 or so years and I just had to have a taste of the hype. They are known for making very aesthetically pleasing workout gear, supporting and collaborating with influencers like Nikki Blackketter and Steve Cook.

I decided to buy their most famous pair of leggings, aka the High Waisted Seamless Leggings in the Black Marl colour way. They retail at €52 and come in four different shades but since I am boring and serious, I went with the most neutral one.

The delivery process was very neat and there were no problems besides the fact that they had a defect, a popped seam on the inside, which I wrote about to their customer service on their Facebook page and they were very very efficient, sending me another pair of leggings, no charge on my part. So, despite what I had read on their page, their customer service was A+, for me.

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Now, sizing has been known to be an issue with Gymshark and I can tell you that, with this particular type of leggings, you should consider going a size up. I thought about getting their XS (which is the size that almost every single one of their athletes wear), because there is no way in hell that my butt is bigger than Nikki’s. But, after doing some research, I decided to go for size S and I got it right. My hip circumference is 97cm and, by their logic, I should have been an XS (99cm). But their S is practically perfect for me, despite it being for 104cm circumference.

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Burning question: are they squat proof? In my case, they are. Let me explain: at the gym, I wear no-show underwear (thongs), so it is basically obvious that nothing shows. You cannot see skin either. BUT, I have tried them on with normal underwear and in that case, they are a bit see-through.

Overall, I do think they are good quality for a good price and they most certainly do attract attention, thanks to the butt and thigh contouring.

Score: 8/10

Thank you for reading.