Review: Favourite cream and liquid highlighters

Dewy skin is a massive trend every time summer rolls around. Seen on the catwalk with the likes of Versace and Jil Sanders opting to give their models a fresh, radiant glow. Then enters my skin. It’s dry, dehydrated and definitely no way near a natural perfect dewy canvas. However, it’s becoming even easier to fake the look all using drugstore products!

The Ultimate Base

Getting fresh skin begins right at the base. A good moisturiser is essential regardless of your skin type, so it’s important to find one that works for you. I have really dry skin so I use a heavy duty moisturiser both in the daytime and evening to prep my skin and quench its thirst.

I usually use a glowy foundation anyway such as Nars Sheer Glow, but if I’m going for more of a full coverage I like to mix in a liquid highlighter to give me more dimension. My personal favourite for this is Soap & Glory Hocus Pocus Illuminator. The illuminator is very light in consistency meaning when mixed with foundation is gives a gorgeous pearlescent champagne sheen. I sometimes actually apply this straight to the skin almost like a primer and then apply my foundation with a damp beauty blender which works really great. This is perfect for an everday healthy glow.

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Another favourite is the Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Monaco. I find this works better when I don’t have fake tan on as it has more of a pink sheen but it’s absolutely gorgeous mixed into my foundation.

The Cheek(y) Glow

Once your base is applied, you can add extra dimension using a highlighter. Cream highlighters often look much more natural than their powder equivalents. However, these ones seriously pack a punch in their own right. The Soap and Glory Glow All Out highlight stick in the shade Ice Shimmer gives an amazing colour payoff of a gorgeous champagne pop. It is shimmery but not glittery which means less metallic cheekbones and more superstar sheen. They also have Wonderbronze which is perfect for deeper skintones or just for adding an instant sunkissed glow to the skin. I’ve never really seen a product like this one in the drugstore before as cream highlighters are usually more cool or icey toned so it’s fantastic to see S&G spreading their wings! I’m currently very tanned thanks to my favourite Bondi Sands but I think this will also look amazing on holiday with a natural tan too. Barry M have strobe sticks which are also great for adding a sheer wash of shine to the cheekbones.

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L-R: Topshop Gleam, S&G Iced Shimmer, S&G WonderBronze

Another favourite is the Topshop Glow pot in Gleam. This is a much hyped product in the blogger world so of course I had to try it. It’s slightly more expensive than I’d usually expect from Topshop makeup however the glow is just insane. It’s a stunning gold glow that seriously delivers in brightening up your face and giving it an immense highlight. It’s certainly not for the faint hearted.

What are your favourite cream or liquid highlighters?

C x

*blog post supported by Soap & Glory. All opinions are my own.

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What The Puck’s happening at Glasgow Caledonian University?

Hey everyone! I’m taking a little break from my usual blogging schedule to let you all know that Soap & Glory are heading back to campus tomorrow (Tuesday 25th April) to host a “Where the PUCK is he?” event. Grab your squad and head on down to campus to hunt down our glow in the dark pucks (we’ll have hid hundreds of them!) to win some amazing Soap & Glory bath, body and beautystuffs!

If you’re really eagle-eyed and find our shiny Golden puck, you could be in with the chance of winning a whole years supply of Soap & Glory!

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All you have to do is:

Track down one of our limited edition Puck the Ducks (they’ll be hidden all over campus!)

Tweet or Instagram a picture of your lil duck using the hashtag #WherethePuck. Get creative with it! (remember to make sure your account isn’t private so I can view it on the day)

I’ll respond letting you know where our secret location on campus is, where you can then trade in your duck for some amazing Soap & Glory goodies!

Keep an eye on the event on the day to find out where our #wherethepuck stations are to come and collect your freebies, and some pretty in pink hints around where our lucrative golden pucks location.

Add yourself to the event here to get involved. If you’re on Snapchat, give the official Soap and Glory account a follow for updates and pink-ness on the day! (SoapandGloryUK)

Hope to see you all on Tuesday! x

C x

*Featured image courtesy of our lovely friends at Soap&GloryUSA on Instagram. Blog supported by Soap & Glory, all views are my own.

 

 

Study Hacks for the Stressed Student

With teaching now finished at my University, it’s the time for intense revision and final deadlines to come rolling around scarily fast. As I try to cram in as much revision as possible in the next few weeks, here’s my top tips for a stressed out student like me!

Plan, Plan, Plan

Usually university doesn’t just leave you a few exams to deal with at the end of term. There’s always a good few pieces of coursework conveniently slotted in too, such as a 3,000 research proposal which I’m currently attempting to tackle. It’s important to find the balancing act between doing this coursework and still setting time aside to study so neither side suffers. I tend to write down at the start of the week when I’m working, if I have any other things planned and then set aside a good few hours a day for uni work. This way I can wake up knowing what I need to do each day and find it motivates me to actually get it done.

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Find a study space

It’s so important to find somewhere where you can actually concentrate when it comes to revision. I find studying in my bedroom far too distracting, so I tend to sit in the dining room and leave my phone upstairs or at the opposite side of the room to stop me scrolling Instagram endlessly. Everyone focuses in a different way so find a space where you feel most comfortable, whether that be outside in the garden, on the sofa or in the local library. We have a 24 hour study lab available on campus which is also fantastic for getting yourself in the zone.

Study in groups

Chances are your classmates are stressing just as much as you about the dreaded final exam, so why not put together a study group to revise together? I find this to be so helpful to cover any topics you’re all struggling with, as you can help one another and give each other any quirky tips you’ve got to help you remember it. My friend Jade makes up stories to try and remember legislation, something I’d never have thought of before!

GCU have private study rooms located in the Student Association which are great for getting a group together. There’s also study rooms available in the Saltire centre which can be booked via the library desk. I’ve used both and find them fantastic for group studying. Have a look on your Universities website for similar study spaces available to you.

Find what works for you

Everyone takes information in in a different way, so it’s important to work out what works for your brain. I tend to write my notes out in my own words using coloured pens, which I then stuck to the walls in my room. I also really like making flashcards for each topic which I can then ask my dad or a friend to run over with me.

You could also record yourself saying a particular topic or key points on your voice memos on your phone or iPod and listen to it back whilst commuting. I’ve done this before and as much as I detested the sound of my own voice by the end of the week, it really helped pass the time when I was stuck in traffic in the car. You might just do past papers or tests online, or by simply looking at your notes. If you’re a visual learner and like mindmaps, try MindMup which was recommended to me by my friend Amy. This allows you to create as many mindmaps as you wish which can be shared on social media with friends or converted from PDF so you can print it.

Use a playlist

I find sometimes a bit of background noise helps me focus more on what I’m studying. As much as I’d love to be able to blast Beyoncé for motivation, I end up spending more time perfecting my vocals and doing the Single Ladies dance than actually studying. Spotify have a whole “Focus” playlist section specifically for studying and concentrating, with my favourite being the Music for Concentration playlist.

Take a break

I’m definitely the kind of person who will spend hours trying to cram stuff in, but there comes to a point where your brain will just hit a wall and won’t take anything else in. Make sure to take regular small breaks for snacks and study fuel, and if possible go get some fresh air to get a break from the laptop. By stepping away from the books for even just half an hour it can give you an instant refresh when you come back to restart. Taking a break is also so important for you mentally if you feel you’re getting stressed or anxious. Coursework is of course important, but so is your mental health, so look after both.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

If there’s a particular area you’re struggling with or you just can’t find the materials you need in your notes/online, ask for help! Your uni lecturers are there to help you pass your coursework and exams so send them a quick email or head to their office for advice. Or, create a chat with people from your course where you can all share any queries you may have. Chances are you won’t be the only one struggling with that topic, so you’ll be doing everyone a favour by asking it. You all have the same goal at University, and that’s to graduate with the best degree possible, so help each other get to end.

Just remember that the end is in sight and all this hard work will be worth it in the end!

What are your top study tips?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap and Glory. All opinions are my own.

 

 

 

Review: Wow Brows with Soap & Glory

My eyebrows are something which have definitely improved over the years. As a teen, they were very sparse and I never filled them in and when I look at pictures of me from that time I cringe. Then I moved onto filling them in and my goodness that was JUST as bad. Brows frame your face and are SO important in making me look human on a day to day basis, and I definitely think it’s all down to the products as well as the technique.

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Archery Two-in-One Brow Pencil

I find brow pencils the easiest product to use to fill in my eyebrows to my desired shape. Some pencils are just too chunky or waxy, but Soap & Glory’s Archery is my all time favourite for both the quality and the price point. I used to use this in the shade “Brownie Set” which was slightly too light for my dark brown hair. However I was thrilled when S&G added to the range with Dark Chocolate which is a perfect match! The spoolie on one end is also fantastic to brush through the eyebrows and then switch to the small nib to draw in individual brow hairs. I run the spoolie back through the fronts of my brows to create more of a gradient affect. This is my everyday go to brow product and whether you’re new to the realm of brows or a brow expert I highly recommend trying these out! (I don’t have any pictures of my pencil as I’ve used it so much that all the writing has rubbed off, not very picture worthy haha!)

You can buy Archery pencil here for £8 with three different shades.

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Archery DIY Brow Bar

This little kit has all your brow must haves in one easy compact. It has two brow powders in the shade “Love is Blonde” and “Dark chocolate”, a clear wax, a cream highlighter and two double ended tools to perfect your brows. You use the teeniest little spooly (how cute!) to brush your brows through, then the black angled brush to apply a small amount of the wax to the brows. The yellow slanted brush can then be used to apply your desired colour and a sweep of highlighter under the brow and you’re done! The colours in the palette are great because you can mix them together as you wish to create a custom colour. You can always swap in your own tools if you’re not a dab hand with tiny little brushes, but these make it great for travelling too! I find powders more intense for my eyebrows so I love to use these for nights out for more defined “wow” brows.

You can buy the brow bar here for £12.00.

 

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Left: with Archery pencil. Right: with Archery Brow Bar

 

I think Soap & Glory have nailed the brow game for the drugstore and have such a huge array of products to suit everyone. One thing I would LOVE for them to bring out is something along the lines of the ABH brow pomades as, if the rest of their products are so good, I think they’d be the darkhorse with this too!

What’s your favourite brow products?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap & Glory. All opinions are my own.

Beauty Hacks You Need in Your Life #1

Whilst I am a massive makeup and beauty junkie, life can sometimes just get a little too busy with work, university and a social life to keep up to focus on perfecting my baked under eyes. Anything I can do to cut down on time and multitask, I will do! Here’s my top five beauty hacks which you need in your life:

Use conditioner as shaving cream

This is an oldie that I use all the time. Shaving foam can be expensive, and I’ve found certain ones can dry out my skin. Use up those conditioners that just aren’t cutting it for your hair instead. Conditioners give a close shave, whilst acting as a good lubricant and guideline for shaving. I use a cheap Alberto Balsalm one in the shower which you can pick up from most places for a mere £1. This is also great for cutting down on toiletries for travelling. Smooth and silky legs in an instant!

Use matte eyeshadow for your eyebrows

Trying to find a perfect match for your brow colour can be difficult, however the majority of us will own at least a few matte eyeshadows. Save yourself a pretty penny on buying eyebrow powders and use these for your brows instead! These are perfect for filing in your brows with, and can be mixed and matched according to how dark you prefer them. I often use the colour crave from Urban Decay Naked Basics for mines.

Apply dry shampoo before going to bed

We’ve all had days when our hair has definitely needed a wash but we just don’t have the time/can’t be bothered to do it. In steps the trusty dry shampoo with it’s amazing grease lifting properties and its not so amazing white residue that takes an age to brush out. Apply it before going to bed and tie your hair up to give it more time to absorb. You’ll have little to no white cast left in the morning!

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Apply a translucent powder to a glossy lip to mattify it

This ones fantastic to transform any glossy or satin finish lip colour you have in your collection. I particularly love doing this to red or deep berry tones to instantly give them a revamp without having to buy a matte alternative. I use a flat brush to pat a small amount onto the centre of my lips and move it outwards. This can also be added onto matte shades to intensify the colour.

Bake your under eyes with a translucent powder and damp beauty sponge

Translucent powder isn’t just for the face or the lips as seen in the above hack! This one’s a tip from Kim Kardashians very own makeup artist Mario. Apply your powder under your eyes with a damp sponge and leave it for a few minutes before sweeping it away. By using a damp sponge rather than a brush, it gives an amazing brightening effect and just settles nicely into the skin. Well, if it’s good enough for Kim K!

I loved writing this post and sharing some of my favourite beauty hacks to introduce into your routine. I’m thinking of possibly doing a series?

C x

What are your unusual beauty hacks?

*Blog supported by Soap & Glory. All opinions are my own.

 

How to: Creme Egg Easter Cheesecake (No Bake)

Every year, the minute Match rolls round I basically go into a Crème Egg induced food coma. They’re a seasonal thing, so really I’ve only got a few months to eat as many as I can, right?

Now I’m no chef, but I decided to try making a Crème Egg Cheesecake after reading my friend Josephine’s recipe here. I wanted to make a slightly larger offering, so I roped my best friend Abi and her 4 year old son Riley into it to (him mainly with the bribe of being able to lick the bowl and eat mini Crème eggs throughout…). It’s pretty simple and fun to get the kids involved!

Here’s an easy, no bake cheesecake perfect for any Easter parties or Easter weekend itself. You can of course adjust this accordingly if you want more filling/a thicker base or if you just want a tonne more crème eggs in it. I promise I won’t judge.

Ingredients:

  • 9″ Springboard tin (meaning the side unclips to remove the cheesecake. I got mines from Home Bargains for £2)
  • 80g digestive biscuits
  • 150g unsalted butter, melted
  • 560ml of double cream
  • 3 x 180g tubs full fat Philadelphia
  • 1 teaspoon of Vanilla extract
  • 1 bag of Mini Crème Eggs
  • 3 normal Crème eggs

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Recipe:

  1. BASE: Place the digestives into bags and crush them until they reach a consistency you like. I prefer to leave it more chunky but you can roll them out until they’re like sand if you prefer.
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    We gave Riley his own little bag to crush too!

  2. Melt the butter in the microwave or hob, then add in the crushed biscuits and mix.
  3. Press this to the bottom of your tin
  4. TOPPING: Whip up your double cream until its fluffy and making peaks, but not to dense.IMG_1050
  5. Add your Philadelphia and vanilla extract to the cream and fold in
  6. Chop up the bag of mini crème eggs and add to the filling
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    Pop the eggs in the fridge before cutting to stop them being too runny.

  7. Spread the topping over the base and smooth
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    Neatness definitely isn’t key here!

  8. Stick in the fridge to set!

 

Allow the cheesecake to set for around 2/3 hours, and add your large Crème eggs to decorate.

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And tada! Not the neatest by any means but a surprisingly easy and fun recipe to get the kids involved with too. I don’t know what our little Easter Bunny enjoyed more, the actual cooking or the cheesecake afterwards!

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What’s your favourite Easter treat?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap & Glory. All opinions are my own.

 

How To: Fresh Smokey Eyes

One thing I absolutely love playing around with is new eyeshadow palettes. I mean, I definitely don’t need anymore, but somehow I always manage to find space in my drawer for yet another.


When I received the “Kick Into Neutral” palette from Soap & Glory, I was so excited as I already own one of their old quad palettes which I used to use to death. I’ve been using the palette to do an everyday light smokey eye, which I’ve been absolutely loving. If you’re new to smokey eyes or just unsure on how to do them, the amazing Rosanna has a fantastic video here which is so easy to follow.

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I applied the matte shade in “Cuddly Bare” in my crease as my transition shade. It’s a really lovely cool toned brown which would do with pretty much any of the other colours in the palette. I then applied the shade “Bright Spark” on the inner 3/4 of my eye, and finally I used a flatter shadow brush to pack on the shade “Mice-tro” on the outer 1/4 to deepen it up. 


The key to smokey eyes is blend, blend, blend. It doesn’t have to be a neat application as long as you blend it out. I use a Zoeva 231 and find it works a dream to blend the shadows out. I use the shade Cuddly Bare again to run over the crease and blend out the dark colour.

I then applied the Soap & Glory “Supercat” pen liner to create a wing. I used to be extremely loyal to this liner so already knew I really liked it. The liner nib is a nice size as it’s not too thick or thin. Pen liners are by far my favourite as I find them easiest to control.


Finally, I coated my lashes in some of the “Thick and Fast” mascara to finish the look.


Overall, I’m really impressed with the pigment and performance of the eyeshadows considering they are only £13 for 10 shadows. The colours “Rich Tea” (a gorgeous shimmery gold) and “Pink-a-little” are also so so pretty for daytime use. The shadows last all day and don’t budge.

Hope this tutorial was helpful! 

What’s your favourite eyeshadow palette?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap and Glory. All opinions are my own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review: Is Soap and Glory “The Greatest Scrub Of All”?

If you’ve got dry, sensitive skin like me, trying a new face scrub is likely to be something you’re a little bit apprehensive about. A face scrub in my skin care routine is crucial to smooth over dry patches, but it must be gentle enough to not aggravate my eczema.

So, into my skincare routine walks Soap and Glory “The Greatest Scrub of All”. Bold claims straight away from the name, but I was initially sceptical due to previous bad and painful experiences with harsh scrubs. Sold as a “DIY micro-dermabrasion”,  the scrub contains salicylic acid, which is traditionally known to treat oily skin. However, it’s also fantastic for breaking down dead skin cells without actively having to “scrub” them away as it encourages natural skin turnover.

The scrub is for all skin types, and recommends using a pea-sized amount onto damp skin wherever your problem areas are (whether that be an oily nose to unclog pores or an area of flakey skin) for around 30 seconds.

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I was instantly drawn into the claim that the scrub gave “instant radiance”. I’ve been using this once or twice a week after using a cleanser in the evening, and following with moisturiser as directed.

The Results

Honestly, the face polish has become a firm favourite in my routine. The grains within the scrub are not too harsh and very finely milled within the polish itself, which means 30 seconds is perfect to give a good amount of exfoliation. It’s not too harsh for my skin and leaves it feeling soft and visibly more radiant. I stuck to using it once a week, sometimes twice if I had a particular problem area, and this worked great for me. If you have more oily skin, you possibly could use it more for a deeper clean.

Most amazingly, I have noticed a huge improvement on my facial milia. Due to my eczema, I have to use a heavy moisturiser to treat it which can cause the annoying tiny white bumps to appear around my eyes and under my cheeks. I, of course, don’t use the scrub on my eye area itself but those under and around the eye they are visibly reduced. Salicylic acid does = DIY microdermabrasion in this case!

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I’d definitely say the scrub lives up to its claims of being suitable for all skin types and giving instant radiance. It’s one that you can adapt to suit you based on how much you use and how frequent etc. Is it the Greatest Scrub of All? That’s for you to try the polish and answer!

You can buy The Greatest Scrub of all here for £9 for 150ml.

Do you use a face scrub in your skincare routine?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap and Glory. All opinions are my own.

Let’s Chat: January Roundup

The first month of a new year always has this weird atmosphere around it. Everyone is trying so hard to make a positive start and push their new year goals (myself included) that it almost feels wrong to admit if things just aren’t going right. Things get shitty, and that’s okay to admit from January right through to December.

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January 2017 has been a complete blink and you’ll miss it month. I had exams at the start of the month which were a complete knock back to reality after an amazing festive period, and started back university for my second semester of third year. With the talk of March/April/May exams already rife I can just tell this semester is going to be a stressful one!

I travelled down to London for my amazing Soap & Glory digital ambassador training day which you can read all about here. I have never travelled further than Glasgow alone by myself, so setting myself the challenge of travelling and arriving in one piece in London was a scary mission, but I did it! It really was an amazing day and gave me such an insight more into marketing, social media and PR work. As a journalism student, these are all avenues I could explore when I graduate so it was fantastic to see how it all worked.

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January was the month I tried to make myself be more organised. I’ve found having a week to view planner a great way of setting all my tasks out. Juggling uni work/actual part-time work/blogging/exercising/socialising/sleeping has not been easy so by giving myself set goals each day has helped lots.

I watched Bridget Jones’ Baby this month and absolutely loved it. There’s a running joke between my friends and I that I will be Bridget when I’m older because a) I’m a journalist b) I love a good pair of Spanx and c) I’m ridiculously unlucky in love. I laughed as much at the third instalment as the first two, a definite recommended film for a girly night in. Jojo Vibe has been my most played song on Spotify this month, I absolutely LOVE her new album.

I bought the Two Faced Sweet Peach palette and the Kylie Cosmetics Koko Collection this month, both of which are all forms of heart eye emojis. I’m trying to put myself on a makeup spending ban for February as I did go a tiny bit overboard over the festive period…. Lets see how that one lasts!

I got an iPhone 7 towards the end of the month, so my aim is get as many great pictures as I can this month.

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So here’s to February 2017, let’s see what you have in store for me.

What are your February 2017 goals?

C x

Why Your University Friends Are Friends For Life

You get many things coming out of University: an education, a love for fast food and mainly a chunk of debt. But with Galen-tines day just around the corner (yes, a whole day to celebrate your friends) we need to appreciate the amazing friendships we make along the way.

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  1. You’ve seen each other at your best…

From acing assignments which you’ve slaved over together to spending all your student loans on dresses which make you look 10/10, you’ll be there for each other every step of the way to that big graduation.

  1. And your worst

They’ve probably held your hair back as you ran to the toilet after one too many Jagerbombs, and saw you in a sea of leftover Dominoes boxes and greasy hair as you fight your way through revision. But that’s okay, because they’re equally as minging.

  1. Surviving the hangovers (and the lectures)

Ah yes, where there’s a university, there’s always an abundance of bars and clubs close by for you to “just have a few” because you’ve a 9AM lecture in the morning. Fast forward a few hours, you and your friends are knee-deep in shots and declaring your love for each other.

  1. You’ve “grown up” together

University is a time of huge changes, from moving away from home to making new friends, it’s the time to discover who you really are. The windy path from teenager to mini-adult involves a lot of bills and responsibilities and c’mon, what bond is stronger than the joint crying over that?

  1. They never judge you for your procrastination

Mainly because they are too. Who knew re-watching an entire One Tree Hill boxset was more valuable than writing that essay?

  1. You talk about the real things

And I don’t just mean boys and makeup. I mean your five year plan, planning the dream job and aspirations, questioning how the hell you’ll ever afford your own mortgage(?!). The future is scary, but you’ll always be there cheering each other on.

  1. They know far too much

You’ve let them in all on all the juicy details of your life so you couldn’t possibly let them go. And let’s be honest, you’ve already picked out your bridesmaid dresses.

How will you be celebrating Galen-tines day?

C x

*Blog supported by Soap and Glory