Wednesday, 16 December 2015

My Top 6 Love/Hate Facebook Peeves

Facebook. Facebook is definitely something that most people have a love/hate relationship with. Some people will tell you at parties that they are not even on the social networking site (smugly) while others will have their Nan constantly write on every single status they write. I myself can't draw away from it's mystical force, but of course there are some things on there that really grind my gears. Here are my top ten pet hates about the beloved social network.

1) People who post constant music videos from YouTube. Strategically posted with some sort of comment about how it's the "best song ever made" (pretty sure you said that last week about some old 90s banger a dodgy DJ would play whilst drunk at your second removed cousins engagement party), or some sweeping feeling statement about how this song cuts deep in your heart. Does anyone honestly actually sit there and play these music videos? I think about 1/10 times in my life have I ever though, "oh Claire* has posted another wonderful music video, must sit and listen and feel those feels". Come on though. We are all guilty of it. 

2) People who always ask for stuff. To them, Facebook has become the next best thing to Gumtree or Craigslist. Preferably free or cheap usually follow their need for a washing machine or new Audi. Now I do not berate people being smart with their pennies but there is a line that needs to be drawn. Once in a while is fair enough but when you're looking to kit your whole house and the neighbours it does get a bit tedious, especially when you start become well known as that person

3) The person dating an as$hat that makes us feel we are dating them too. She's cheated on you 6 times, why not do yourself and us all a favour and get rid of the idiot who is causing you so much misery? Obviously moaning on Facebook about it isn't solving the issue. There are only so many times we can sympathise before you take them back and act like it never happened until 5 weeks later when it happens again. 

4) People who write constant passive aggressive statuses. Oh the irony of this statement from myself whilst writing this post. But some people really do seem to have such an issue with some of their Facebook friends, it makes you want to kindly point out the "unfriend" button but you're scared in case you're their next victim. This is the 8th post today Kelly* about someone's awful seflies they keep posting on there and how they need to take a trip to the local MAC counter and be matched with the correct foundation. We will never know who that person is though Kelly will we?! Sadly, nor will the victim. Ain't nobody got time for that. Except Kelly, of course who seems to have all the time in the World when it comes to analysing her Facey B friends who she probably added after bumping into them on a completely random night out.

5) The ghosty Facebook friends. They never speak to you, comment on your status or like your new profile picture but when you randomly bump into them in a pub on Christmas eve they will relay your whole life back to you via the statuses you've posted. "Oh I saw you where having trouble with your cat flap on June the 1st 2015 according to that status you posted on Facebook, well I suggest you do this..." Not creepy. At all. 

6) People who have constant World changing ideas that we all need to know about daily. Fair is fair, nobody dislikes ideas but maybe once in a while you could go out there and put some ideas into action. It's all very well suggesting to us that we feed the homeless this winter, as long as you are actually practising what you preach. So many people mindlessly share viral posts about helping others but how many actually do something- honestly?


 We are all a little guilty of being one of those annoying people on Facebook. Let us be real. But it doesn't mean we can't all get a little self righteous now and then and have a little rant? Either way I personally would not be without my little social network friend, until it sadly may in the future have the same fate as Myspace or Bebo. Oh I do hope not. 

*The people mentioned in this post are purely hypothetical. 

Jessica Martin

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Origins Clean Energy- quick review.

"Clean Energy"

 I was on the look out for the perfect cleanser to take the day off. Basically, I needed something industrial but gentle to help remove my extra strong waterproof eyeliner. Clean Energy is best for all skin types and such a pleasure to use. This product will melt away all the days sins and leave your skin cleansed and feeling soft. Origins boasts that the formula is lightweight, high-tech and non-comedogenic infused with Sunflower, Sesame and Safflower oil. A plus of this product is it also helps reduce the effects of environmental hazards and comforts the skin.

 This little beauty retails at £23.50.

Latest Lush Loves

 One of my greatest pleasures in life is bathing. I swear I was a mermaid in a previous life- I should get me a clam bra. Due to not being a mermaid however I've opted for the next best thing. Lush ( makes me so happy. If you live near a Lush shop you will know what I mean when I say it's a shop you will definitely smell before you see. I adore the shop and always make sure I have a daily visit to keep my precious supplies topped up like some crazed lush-loving magpie. Not one to be selfish, I thought I'd share my favourite Lush products with you lovely people in hopes to spread the joy these products bring to my bathing.  

Here are a few things I have been loving in the last month...

"Candy Mountain" 

Candy floss sweetness mixed with dolly mixtures. This little beauty will turn your bath into a cloudy marshmallow mountain of bubbles, and transport you to candy land. I love this little pick me up if I'm feeling particularly fluffy. 

"Mmmelting Marshmallow Moment"

Another one to satisfy any sweet craving is this little beauty. This little beauty leaves my skin feeling super soft and I love to pair it with my brand new shower gel obsession- "Imperial Leather" Marsh mallow. Do you notice a theme here?! 


I was transported to Space. This bath bomb was visually fantastic. Blast off happened and after I was left with a gorgeous glittery blue sky to relax in. The aroma was sharp and spicy with Lush comparing it to aftershave. This is definitely something I'd repurchase in a heart beat and it brought me to a happy place. 

Perfect night sky.

"The Experimenter"

Saving the best to last for this one. This was my first time using "The Experimenter" and it was glorious. So much so, I had to go out and buy more.  There are no words to describe how funkadelic this bath bomb is, so I've linked you to a fabulous video of the product from my Instagram. 

 Described on the Lush website as having a "poppy candy" scent that descends into a sweet vanilla aroma. 

This one was just fabulous. Well done, Lush!

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Places to go... Devon.

Buckland Abbey, Garden and Estate- an ancient gem in the Dartmoor landscape.

Photographs by Jessica Martin

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Get the Glow: My Personal Skin Care Tips

   I'm Jessica and I'm a product junkie. You will the sides in my bedroom littered with various products and potions, all bought on a whim and all intended to be that miracle product that will solve all possible beauty flaws. However, now I am in my 20s I have put together what they call a "skin care regime". It's actually not as regimental as it sounds, and in my product junkie haven I have found products that work best for me- and products that I actually enjoy using. I know how frustrating it can be having to remember to scrub your face when all you want to do is fall into bed at night, but hopefully my tips will help someone out there. 

When: everyday, twice a day preferably.

The first product I am thankful for is "Cleanse & Polish" from the lovely Liz Earle. I have mentioned this product before, and frankly it works. This stuff also lasts a really long time- and I am definitely someone who is very generous with my usage. My skin feels so clean after I use Liz Earle's polish, and I feel the combination of the hot cloth and creamy product really helps to get every last scrap of make-up off. This is something I come back to time and time again.


When: around 3 times a week (depending on your skin type).

City life can take a toll on your skin. You need to remove the grime, dirt and build up to make way for sparkling fresh new skin. I recommend exfoliating a few times a week- not every single day as it can be damaging to that precious skin of yours. One of my favourite exfoliators is made by Soap and Glory. Exoliators also help with sun damage and fine lines. Such a pleasure to use! Say goodbye to that pesky dead skin and stimulate new skin cell growth.

Soap & Glory™ Scrub Your Nose In It™ Special Pore Refining Formula AHA Facial Scrub.


When: everyday, twice a day preferably. 

"Smooth your way" for moisture. I recommend toning your skin after cleansing. Clinique is a long standing and trusted skincare provider. Many of us may remember the women in our family using Clinique. Their toner is refreshing, and it doesn't give you that "tight" feeling some toners do. Shrink your pores simply by putting some toner on a cotton ball and rub gently over the skin.


When: everyday, morning and night. 

 Moisturiser is a very personal thing. Everyone has different skin. Whether you have dry or oily skin- there is definitely a product out there for you. I myself have combination/normal skin and I really enjoy using serums. I love how they feel on my skin, they're not too heavy and make it feel like silk. Some people use different creams for night and day but I have to admit I'm a bit lazy when it comes to that. I actually found this product as it was a cult favourite a few years ago now, and I can see what all the fuss was about. At the time it came out, it actually sold out of my local Boots store and I definitely see why. It's like smoothing silk onto your cheeks.

"Matrixyl 3000 Plus™* – the star technology for helping to restore a more youthful appearance to your skin.
Hyaluronic acid – for added firmness.
Patented antioxidant complex – to protect the skin against environmental stress.
Rice peptide and alfalfa complex – helps to preserve levels of collagen and fibrillin in the skin."


When: every morning. 

 When you live in England, using SPF everyday seems a tad pointless but this really isn't true. The moment you step outside in rain, sun or even snow those UV rays are reaching your skin. It may not matter too much in your twenties but you'll thank yourself in later life. Pop on some SPF before applying your make-up in the morning and off you toddle! Take that, UV rays. 

 This protection from Clinique will do the job wonderfully.


When: once a week.

 I love a face mask. Nothing beats just relaxing with one on albeit looking slightly scary, as I notice from the reaction of my pup when I have a face mask on. One product I keep going back to is by Lush Cosmetics. "Cupcake" is a fabulous little product that's best kept in the fridge. (Don't eat it).


When: everyday, all day.

Skin is 64% water after all. Keep it glowing, drink that water! 

Friday, 29 May 2015

Magazine Production

A Look at the Dove "Real Beauty" Marketing Campaign, Jessica Martin

Marketing is one of the most important ploys when it comes to the success of a company. It is about making an individual believe in the lifestyle they are buying into. In today’s market, people are confronted with so many products that it’s important your product stands out. Having a piece of someone’s mind is better than having a piece of real estate, after all. It’s vital that the company distinguishes their own unique brand and puts up a fight when it comes to beating off other competitors. Brands are a key element in building a relationship with consumers, as they represent consumer’s feelings and perceptions about a product and its performance.

  Baines and Page (2008) believe marketing is essential when it comes to developing and delivering products to the consumer, and most importantly to the company, increasing profit margins. Baines and Page (2008) go on to explain the difference between customers and consumers. A customer is someone who buys something from a shop, website or business whereas a consumer is someone who uses the product. An example of this can be a mother buying her child a toy. While the mother may be the customer, the consumer is the child.  There are three types of orientation which include customer orientation, competitor orientation and interfunctional orientation. Customer orientation is when the company is concerned with meeting customer needs, meaning customer satisfaction is measured daily. Competitor orientation is where an organisation develops an understanding of competitor’s strengths and weaknesses. Finally, there is interfuctional coordination. This requires all of the functions within the organisation to work together and achieve long term profit. Marketing is also characterised by consumer orientation, segmentation and targeting, advertising and sales promotions. The company would do as much research with customers and potential customers to ensure their product does well- they would look at things such as packaging, pricing, advertising that is believable, relevant and motivating. (Donovan & Henley, 2010).

 According to The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the simple definition of marketing is;

“The management process of anticipating, identifying and satisfying customer requirements profitably”. (CIM, 2001).

 Public relations are also important when it comes to running a successful marketing campaign. Public opinion is extremely important when it comes to business, as after all they are the people that will be consuming your product. It’s also important to get the media and journalists on your side when promoting a product. The difference between advertising and public relations is technique. Tench and Yeomans (2009) explain that the “advertiser controls the message (by paying for it) while the PR practitioner seeks to persuade other people (‘third parties’) to convey the message for them in a supportive way (‘endorsement’). Typically, these other people will be journalists who have the power to confer editorial endorsement by reporting favourably on a product, a service, a person or an organisation.”

   With that in mind, I have decided to analyse The Dove campaign for Real Beauty, their marketing techniques and looking at what made it so successful. The Dove Campaign for Real Beauty is a successful media campaign that is recognised by many worldwide. Their main goal was to create a brand that celebrated every single woman, no matter what they looked like. On their website, they state that The Dove brand is “rooted in listening to women” (Dove, 2015). In the study, statistically only 2% of women around the world would describe themselves as beautiful.  It all started in 2004 with a global study conducted by Dove. The study was called “The Real truth about Beauty: A Global Report, Dove”. In the adverts, “real” women appeared whose appearances were outside the stereotypical norms of beauty and the beauty industry. Dove got the public involved and asked the viewers to judge the women’s looks by taking part in a voting process, Dove wanted to provoke discussion and encourage debate, and that’s what happened. Alongside TV ads and posters of “real women”, Dove created a very popular YouTube campaign. On their YouTube, various videos have been viewed millions of times, such as “Dove Real Beauty Sketches, You’re more beautiful than you think” which has so far racked up 65,567,189 views in the United States. These videos are shared daily on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, provoking thoughts and discussion amongst people. Even the comments on the YouTube videos have received positive feedback and still do to this day; a recent example of a positive comment is from Samantha Morrison on the Dove Beauty Stories: Four Generations video.

“Sometimes I forget Dove is really just soap, not an amazing, encouraging company that just makes 99% of all teenage girls and just women in general feel confident and beautiful, and teach us to step out of our "beauty comfort zone". I guess it's kind of both.” (Samantha Morrison, May 2015).

   The Dove campaign went on to further grow in 2005, when the second and what Dove calls the most “iconic” phase of the Campaign for Real Beauty came about. Again, public opinion came in to play as the adverts contained six women with “real bodies and real curves”, which lead thousands of people to take to the website to discuss beauty issues. It’s interesting to see how much Dove used public engagement, and I feel this was one of the key players in such a successful campaign. They targeted an area that is becoming talked about more and more, as airbrushed pictures grace our magazines and adverts. In asking for public opinion, it also meant they got feedback and could use that to improve their campaign further. Despite Dove being all about body care and soap, they have delved further into the minds of its consumers and made Dove all about body positivity and self love. It also went hand in hand with the news and media at the time. Over the years, the media has reported on “overly thin models” on runways and body issues. There have even been television shows presented by people such as Gok Wan teaching women of all shapes and sizes to love their bodies (How to Look Good Naked Channel 4, 2006). Dove has slotted in well to the “love the skin you’re in” bandwagon that many have jumped onto. It was in September 2006, (Dove, 2015), that a news and media furor erupted when Spain banned overly thin models from its fashion runways. From this, in 2006 and 2007, Dove created the Dove Self-Esteem fund. They created a short film called Evolution which like their other YouTube hits, was a success.

  The Dove-Self Esteem fund was very successful and still is. They have noticed a niche in the market for “real” beauty, something that is still debated and reported by mainstream media daily. The self-esteem fund was created as an agent of change to inspire and educate girls and women about a wider definition of beauty. (Dove, 2007). A highlight of Dove’s marketing campaign would probably be the fact that in 2006, their advert “Little Girls” appeared during the Super Bowl break which reached an estimated 89 million viewers. This lead to 2007 and a brand new campaign. They decided to target aging women, after their successful campaign that involved body size. Another study was conducted, called “Beauty Comes of Age”, and it revealed that 91% of women aged 50-64 believed it was time for society to change its views about women and aging. It seemed Dove was widening their consumer base. Dove got internationally renowned photographer Annie Leibovtiz involved in the campaign, and they celebrated age spots, wrinkles and grey hair. This is different to other beauty campaigns that try their best to find solutions to these problems- and don’t tend to celebrate them. Examples of this are hair dye companies that encourage people to cover their grey hair, and products that get rid of wrinkles sold to young girls in their 20s. Dove has broken the convention there and gone for a different tactic that seems to be working for them.

 From then on, the Dove Real Beauty Campaign has grown yearly. Every year, their studies and involvement of different people have become bigger and better. Dove believe their efforts have been positive and a step in the right direction, but feel more does need to be done when it comes to the self-esteem of women and young girls everywhere. To continue to reach its consumers, Dove has created educational programs that have reached over 7 million girls so far, and they hope it reaches 15 million girls by 2015. They work with Girl Scouts of The USA, Girls Inc. and various other partners.

  According to Kotler (2009), good marketing is the art and science of choosing target markets, increasing customers through creating, managing, communicating and delivering superior customer value. The Dove Real Beauty campaign has been around for over a decade now, and I believe their ongoing campaign and loyal consumers are the reason for this. They have also confronted an issue that is close to the hearts of many women. Dove has used a marketing mix of physical evidence, promotion, and people as participants to produce a brand that is still popular to this day. When you think of Dove, you think of positive body image and a well known cosmetic brand that is trusted worldwide. Emarketing and social media networking has also been crucial in their success, and using YouTube as a way to communicate with their consumers has worked remarkably well- especially as YouTube’s popularity has grown quickly since 2004. According to YouTube’s traffic statistics, in 2011 YouTube had more than 1 trillion views. That’s equivalent to almost 140 views for every person on Earth. (Network World, 2012). Dove is known worldwide, and they’ve made sure their videos have gone viral by uploading the video in 25 languages. PR helped in this case, as the video was advertised by top media companies, women and men alike. Another way Dove has connected well with its consumers is the use of “real” women in all its campaigns. They’ve used women of all sizes, ethnicity and ability to promote their products. The women in their posters are always seen as happy in their own bodies, and in turn the consumers are buying into that happiness. It’s interesting to note that although they sell beauty products, their adverts usually do not have images of said products in them. They use women mainly to promote their product, which again buys into the lifestyle they are promoting rather than the product. They also question the norm which leads to women to question their own view of themselves, making it a talking subject that is relatable. 

 Throughout their campaign, the continuing debate and engagement on has kept it alive. I believe Dove will continue to be a popular brand for years to come, while there seems to be an uprising lead by media into loving the skin you’re in. Although there will always be the other side of the beauty industry that promotes thin, non-aging lifestyles, there will always be a place for Dove and it’s real beauty campaign alongside that. Whether they really care or have just found their niche, that’s debatable- many social scientists agree that the idea of pure altruism does not exist (Adam Fetterman, 2014). Critics do question the motives of Dove, which is understandable. Their media campaign works however and the company keeps on growing and creates profit- which is the real reason any company embarks on a media campaign. 

Jessica Martin