The Ultimate Guide to University. #BackToSchool

Ok I lied. This is probably not an "Ultimate guide" because I'm sure I missed a lot of things however I can say that I have developed some unique tips when it comes to saving money at university. Back to School season always gets me excited because it's and excuse for me to enjoy one of my favourite for stationary. I thought it would be helpful to create this guide for all my friends joining university this year and giving them tips on how to save money and what to buy. I do have to say that although this guide will be predominately aimed at students in the UK, i'm sure a lot of these tips can be transferred to other parts of the world. Brace yourselves because this is going to be a big read...
What do I need at University?
In all honesty what you need to bring to university actually depends on your course, however there are some generic things you  can bring that will greatly help you bing prepared. I've made a little college supply Wishlist (as seen below), to be complete honest not all the stuff is necessary.  

Summer Beauty Favourites 2016

It's honesty been such a long time since I last did a beauty post (or any kind of post to be quite honest) and I did a summer favourites post before and a lot of you really liked it, so this year I'm going to do it again. 

I've been obsessing over this make up brand for so long. I'm not exaggerating when I say that I spent my entire trip in UAE scouring every make up store to find that the NYX lip creams had gone out of stock. As soon as I heard that NYX came to the UK, my lovely brother in fact went to buy me the lip creams because I was at work. It was so funny the way my brother was surprised at how busy the make up counters were. 

The two lip creams that I've been loving are Stockholm and Abu Dhabi. They're just so creamy and the colour pay off is just beautiful. I've also been recently using the Matte setting spray, I do really like it but I'm still on the look out for a better brand, so please let me know any good ones in the comments. 
This Eid my cousins bought me the large Passion Fruit Body Butter from Body Shop and this has become my new favourite. It has such a fruity and fun summery smell and it is really good for moisturising after showers. 
Another thing I've been loving is nail care. As a Muslimah we don't typically paint our nails because we need do wudu (abolition) before prayer and our nails need to be water permeable. However when I'm not praying and I get my "monthly gift" I like to make an effort to look cute by paining my nails or wearing stick ons. My favourite nail polish brand is MUA because it's so cheap at only a £1 and it lasts so long and doesn't chip that easily. I've also been obsessing over the Elegant Touch French Manicure stick on nails, It really sticks on and it's so easy to remove.  
I hope you liked this quick favourites post and let me know what products you've been loving this summer. 
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My Problem with the Hijabi Fashion Blogging Industry

Over two years ago I wrote a post on my original blog "Immy's Adventures" about why I decided to stop blogging my outfits, and the truth is I just couldn't keep away, and that's partly why I evolved the blog into this one. However, after much thought, I thought it would be good to repost the post (with a few alterations) and let people know why the hijabi fashion blogging "industry" (I call it that because it is honestly as competitive as modelling or any other industry in fact) has lost its goal. The fashion blogging world has become about fame. To be fair, I guess it to some extent it is with all blogging.
The response from my successful blogging friends would often say that the main reason why I'm not becoming a successful blogger is that I don't show my face. That honestly makes me so sad because the reality of society has become shallow. With the growth of social media, relationships have become so distant. What’s really sad for me is the way we befriend people has become limited to how we look. As much as we would all like to say that were open minded and we really don't base relationships with people based on what they look like...we do...and that's the reality of life. If you truly think about it, on social media what else do you really have to base someone who you've never met in person and that lives half way across the world? The way we look cannot be changed we are born with that, so is it really fair to use that as a basis of who is good and who is bad? I want my mind to change the world and to be looked up to for the beauty of my character. We forget that beauty and youth fade one day, and our minds and souls will be the thing that forever stays the same.

If I’m liked for ONLY having a beautiful face or dressing in pretty clothes, then I don't want to be loved at all. As women, we need to be more than just pretty... But be loved for our minds. With that being said I hold all my fashion and beauty blogging friends in the highest terms and respect their work and this is not for even a second a post against any of them (as I classify as a fashion blogger). So, please before anyone leaves an angry comment below... I speak for myself before anyone else. Hopefully, I haven't offended anyone in this post and please forgive me if I do.  
Thank you to all my fabulous long time readers for making my journey exciting in its own right and supporting me despite never having seen my face. 

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I Wanna Get Better| Life Update

Hey my lovelies! I'm sorry I've been away for so long, honestly I've been taking a bit of a break from life in general. I think it's nice to sometimes get off social media and take time to focus on yourself rather than just on how you "portray yourself online". Don't get me wrong but as much as we all like to show our true selves we sometimes tend to show only our good sides....I'm beyond guilty of this. So whenever I feel like i'm not shooting out positive vibes I like to take time off being online to find out why I'm actually feeling that way. 

Ugh I feel like I have so much to tell you but so little at the same time, I recently broke my foot so I was in an AirCast the last month or so. There's this joke going round that because as some of you may know my mum broke her foot a couple months ago, I decided to join her.Thankfully (Alhamdulliah) I only had a small fracture so the recovery out of a cast was quite quick. 

Ze actually took these pictures of my outfit before we went to see the winter lights at Carnaby a couple of months ago. Honestly I feel a little silly posting them so late on my blog, but better late than never right?  

Let me know what's been happening for you all the past recent months...also I'm planning to revive my advice series so if you have any nagging questions to ask agony aunt Zahra (yours truly) I'd be happy to answer them. 
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Mini UK Etsy Planner Sticker Haul & Discount Codes

I've been obsessed with stickers for as long as I can remember. I was definitely one of those kids at school who tried to do as much of my work as possible because I knew that my teacher would give me a sticker at the end of it. As an adult, although I'm still so fond of stickers I found it hard to use it in daily life so when I discovered the "planner community" I jumped on this bandwagon faster than you can think. 
It can be so hard to find UK based Etsy stores that sell cute planner stickers as most of the planner community are headquartered in the US or Canada. So I did an extensive search and found a couple of stores that I would recommend... Anyway on with the haul...
Pemberley Prints
This is probably my favourite store out of all the Etsy sticker stores I've ordered from so far. The designs are so elegant, and you do get a fair amount of stickers for the price your getting. What I like the most is that the quality of the stickers is impeccable, the paper is quite sturdy so your less likely to accidentally rip a sticker when peeling it back and as probably the world's clumsiest person this is perfect for me. I ordered the Delivery stickers to track when I'm getting any mail or deliveries, and I also bought the tea stickers because I want to start tracking my tea intake as I do feel like I drink a fair amount. In the order, you also get a freebie sampler which honestly makes me want to buy everything on that set. The lovely Tasha from Pemberley Prints has given us a discount code so with "ADVENTURE20' you can get 20% off your order... I'm defiantly going to get some more of her amazing stickers!
Michelle and Patch
, I've been planning to learn how to drive, but I can't seem to motivate myself enough to book lessons, so I bought these stickers...let's hope I can motivate myself to at least book the theory test. I tend to get a lot of clothes either made or shortened so I ordered these stickers to remind myself to visit my seamstress. 

Ellen Bee Makes
I honestly can never remember when my contact lenses need replacing, so I like to put it in my diary. When I saw these stickers from Ellen Bee Makes I had to get how cute are they? Another sticker sheet I bought was the blogging sheet because if anything will encourage me to post more, it's these stickers. 
Cosmic Stickers 
I am the absolute worst when it comes to tracking my "monthly gift". Each month I'm doing all sorts of dodgy calculations and asking all my girl pals who I think are in sync with me when their "gift" arrived. I say now is the time to stop...So I bought these super cute period stickers from cosmic how cute are these stickers. 

I hope you liked this haul! Make sure to leave a comment below letting me know what other UK planner sticker companies there are and what international stores are worth the hefty shipping fee?  
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I was NOT financially compensated for this post; I paid for these items for personal use. All opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

Immeh Abayas Review: Chiffon Cover Up and Floral Hijab

Immeh Abayas was a company I first discovered from my blogging friend Idil (you might know her as the modest doll) when she modelled for one of their collections. I later actually met the sister from the company at a local charity fete where I stocked up on so many of her beautiful tube hijab caps (Basically the best caps around). So when the sister asked me to a review on her items...I just couldn't refuse...a week later and I found a lovely package at my doorstep.

In the package I got a light blue chiffon cover up with the small floral colour pop hijab. When I first got the surprise package from Immeh Abayas I was super excited to see what lovely items the sister had sent me. My long time followers will know that I'm a extremely colour shy person, I mostly do wear black and try my hardest to stay away from any colour/patterns of the sort. So when I saw the light blue cardigan and the floral hijab, my heart did sink a little. However I did put it on and immediately saw myself wearing this in summer. 

The cardigan is such a versatile piece and I'm seriously considering getting  the black or navy one to show you three different ways I would style this piece for the spring time. My favourite all time material for anything clothes, hijabs, you name it, is chiffon because no matter what the cut it just has this classy element to it. The best thing about chiffon however is the fact it does not get holes that easily so you can pin your scarf to the cardigan without any fear of it snagging. If you do want to get this cardigan, i'd say grab it now because it's currently only £12 on sale

The sister also sent me her small floral colour pop hijab and as the name suggest it certainly has a pop. This hijab is a great way to add colour to a simple outfit or even just add it to plain abaya. I would probably wear it around my neck as a cute neck scarf. 

I hope you liked this review and make sure to follow Immeh Abayas on all their social media. 
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How to Get the Best Blogging Photos With a Compact Camera| My Photo Editing Techniques

Not all of us can afford a fancy camera or get our photos professionally edited however that shouldn't stop us from blogging. It certainly shouldn't stop us from making a professional looking blog. i currently own a fairly cheap compact camera in fact the camera I;'m currently using is a bridge camera called the Fujifilm FinePix Bridge camera. It is a point and shoot camera which I think it means it's good for shooting landscape pictures but terrible at shooting portraits etc.. ok...I'll try and stop myself from making this a camera review post but make sure to stop me if I start rambling on about my own camera. 

So this picture above is a picture that I took of the Christmas lights in Carnaby from the before picture you can see that so many things are wrong with it, in fact I've listed a few below: 
  • The focus is wrong- The picture is looking a little too messy
  • The picture is too warm making it too orangey

The photo editing tool that I like to use is PicMonkey, it's free and it so easy to use. (no this is not sponsored). In this picture I used the soften tool to blur out the far background so that the focus is on the lights rather than the buildings in the background. I also toned down the temperature and added a blue tone over it using the exposure tool. That's all really. For me, playing around with the exposure settings really helps make a difference to the picture itself. 

This next picture was done at first using the same technique as above, however the blur effect was edited using photoshop. To create the same effect as a DSLR  camera's aperture setting, I layered different blur percentages over on another. To explain this simply what I did was blur the top of the picture with a higher/ stronger blur and then slowly reduce the blur as it got to the bottom of the picture.

Honestly if you want to find out about more ways to improve your own photography skills using a compact camera, has a really good postThere she gives details on what locations and lighting you can use to get a better picture, I'd certainly say go check that out here.

I hope these little tips helped you, if you want a more in depth step by step tutorial on photo editing please leave a comment below. I missed you girls and I've got so many more posts to get up so bare with me.

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