The summer is nearly over, friends! Is that adopting the “glass half empty” mentality?

I truly don’t know where the summer has gone, but August arriving means it’s basically September…which means it’s basically Halloween. So I’ll be here excitedly pinning Halloween inspiration and dreaming of pumpkin-flavoured everything.

Here’s a recap of my month on Instagram:

You can find me here, or as raincoatesbeauty on the app!

Are you addicted to Instagram too? Leave your links in the comments!

Did you know that I create monthly wallpapers for phone and computer? You can download them for free here!

I’m fairly certain July was nonexistent, and that we entered some sort of time-rift. I feel as though I was just posting my wallpapers for July!

Thank you so much to everyone who downloaded my July Wallpapers!

I received so much great feedback, and I’m so happy to hear you guys are enjoying the wallpapers! I do have many more styles available on my Etsy shop! 

For August’s wallpapers, I was feeling a bit more of a light, girly, tropical vibe. I wasn’t quite ready to say goodbye to the tropical leaves and pink quite yet.

You can download this month’s wallpapers for free from the links below! Click on the link to download the image file!

For Phone:

With Calendar: August-Phone-Wallpaper-cal.jpg

Without Calendar: August-Wallpaper-no-cal.jpg

For Computer

With Calendar:  AugustDesktop-Wallpaper-With-Cal.jpg

Without Calendar:  August-Desktop-Wallpaper-No-Calendar.jpg

I would love to hear what you guys think about this month’s design, and what you’d like to see in the future!

Check out my previous posts: 

Easy, Glowy Summer Makeup Tutorial – Cruelty Free

The Easiest Way To Self-Host Your Blog

Morphe Me Monthly Brush Subscription – July 2018

This is a super easy, quick summer makeup look using cruelty free brands. It’s great for days when you wake up feeling (and in my case, looking) like you walked off the set of The Walking Dead. It’s my go to look for the summer, using a simple trick to make the eyes look bigger and brighter!

Products used:

Promo Codes:

Azeredo Cosmetics Lashes – Use code “MeganC10” to get 10% off!

Sigma Beauty: use code “RAINCOATESBEAUTY” to get 10% off!

*This post is not sponsored, but contains some affiliate links in which I can make a small percentage if you choose to purchase, at no cost to you! – you are in no way obligated to use my links, but it is super appreciated!*

If you’re new to the world of blogging, or don’t know the difference between a self-hosted and a hosted website (and what self-hosted even means) I talk all about it in my recent post here!

To recap, a self-hosted blog or website is like owning a space on the internet. Hosting – or free-hosting – (such as using a site like WordPress.com or Blogger, for example) is sort of like renting a space on the internet. It’s faster and easier to get started and usually cheaper in the beginning, but can be really limiting.

Free-Hosting:

For free-hosting, you can create your own website within minutes on WordPress.com or Blogger, completely free of charge. You then have options to upgrade your plan, so you can purchase your domain (for example, the free version would have a site domain something along the lines of www.raincoatesbeauty.wordpress.com instead of www.raincoatesbeauty.com) and customize your site. While this can seem like a great option for people new to blogging who want to get started, it can actually be one of the biggest mistakes bloggers make.

Ultimately, nothing is truly free. The free versions are so limiting that you will end up having to pay for features you need to grow your blog and run it effectively – any abilities to monetize your blog, customize it, and grow it into a business will be very limited.

Why Hosted Blogs Hinder Your Business

  • Free hosting usually offers little ability in customizing your site (changing your fonts, colours, layouts, and more)
  • You likely won’t be able to customize or add custom code/HTML without upgrading to a premium version (which usually ends up costing you more than self-hosting!)
  • While the hosting platform may offer you seemingly inexpensive options to buy your own domain URL, this tends to be less cost-effective than simply paying for a self-hosted site in the first place.
  • If you’re wanting to start making money from your blog, Google Adsense is one of the easiest ways to do that. However, Google Adsense typically doesn’t approve websites that aren’t self-hosted. In fact, you will have major difficulty adding any sort of ad service to your site at all.
  • Plugins – these are one of the greatest features of WordPress! These are amazing tools that can greatly improve your site and make your job much easier. Plugins that show you how to improve your SEO (Search Engine Optimization,) offer pop-up subscriptions, show your site statistics, backing up your site data, and more. Plugins are not available on most free-hosted platforms. On WordPress.com for example, you can only get plugins if you upgrade to the Business plan which costs over a whopping $300 a year!
  • Technically, your site could be taken down at any moment. The company or platform that hosts your site could be shut down, find themselves in trouble, find problems with your site, and shut down your site.
  • Say your site ends up being a huge success, and a company offers to buy it from you for a very generous price – well, because you don’t technically own the site, you won’t be allowed to sell or transfer it to someone else.

Sadly, I learned this all the hard way. I started with the free version of WordPress.com – and while it was the easiest way for me to get started, I grew instantly frustrated with how limiting it was. Despite having my blog for a few years now, I haven’t been able to build it into a career yet due to these limitations.

So You Want to Switch to A Self-Hosted Site?

If you’ve already got a blog or website and you’re wanting to switch over to self-hosting, this can seem seriously daunting and downright scary. I’m no computer technician, I don’t know how to code, and am always scared of messing something up and breaking my site. I read countless posts on how to switch over to a self-hosted site, but honestly, it went completely over my head.

Then, as if my prayers were answered, I stumbled across the company Blogger2WP!

They’re a team of professionals/technicians that will completely move everything over to a self-hosted site for you. SERIOUSLY. THEY DO EVERYTHING.

The only other companies I’ve seen who offer this sort of service charge an obscene amount of money! Blogger2WP literally does everything for you. You just give them the details, tell them what you want, then sit back and wait for them to finish their magic!

Best of all, they only charge $79 for this! Or if you’ve got a new blog/site, then they only charge $29!! That’s a one-time fee that will completely change the way you blog.

You can get this service for free with the purchase of your hosting from Siteground!! Click here for the details on that!

They work with SiteGround, which is one of the leading web-hosting providers -they’re fast, secure, and offer great support.

There are 2 main expenses with self-hosting: Purchasing your domain (You can purchase your domain for as little as $8.99 a year with iDotz.Net for example!) and your web-hosting. You can host on Siteground for as low as $3.95 a month!) So you can run your site with freedom for as low as $15 a year!

I honestly cannot recommend them enough. They made the entire process so easy and painless. I’m now in control of my blog and slowly starting to turn it into my career!

If you want to switch over yourself, they also offer free step-by-step guides!

Another month, another Morphe Me brush set! July’s Morphe Me Brush Set is nautical themed and features 4 brushes.

I actually opted out of this month’s Morphe package, as it contains brushes with real animal hair. I am now trying to avoid animal hair and stick to synthetic for ethical, cruelty-free reasons. I don’t know if Morphe didn’t get the memo, as they sent this package to me anyway – despite me opting out and not being charged for it. Oh well! Guess that means another review for you guys! I will be giving away the brushes with animal hair to friends or family who need them.

Brush Breakdown:

  • M492 – Duo Foundation (synthetic and sable bristles) – this flat brush has duo fibre bristles and a rounded edge. It’s fluffy enough that it works great for blending liquid products while still allowing you to be precise. A brush like this works great with foundation if you’re wanting to apply a thin or light layer. I love using a brush like this for foundation because it allows you to apply a small amount in a light layer without looking heavy or cakey. This is similar in shape to the G19 that came in January’s brush package. 

 

  • M166 ‑ Oval Shadow (sable bristles)–  this brush is similar in shape to the Mac 217, or other very popular eyeshadow brushes. The M166 however, is flat rather than fluffy. A brush like this is ideal for packing colour onto the lids, as its flat surface picks up eyeshadow and deposits it onto the skin. The Mac 217 in comparison, is fluffier and designed for blending product rather than depositing it. I wouldn’t recommend trying to blend eyeshadow with the M166 – it’s simply too flat to be effective for blending! 

  • M579 ‑ Pro Flat Contour (goat bristles) – this brush has a wide, straight-edge tip and is ideal for using with powder products. Natural hair bristles absorb liquid and cream products, which is why it’s much better to use with powder. A shape like this is a must-have for any contour lovers, as it allows you to easily sculpt out and define your cheekbones. However, I feel like Morphe has included quite a few brushes like this in previous months and I definitely don’t need another. It’s similarin shape to the Y12 from June’s package, and nearly identical to the R8 brush. 

Morphe M57 (left) and R8 (right)

  • M536 Under Eye Bullet (synthetic bristles)– this is a rounded, tapered blending brush that is perfect for under the eye. It can be used for liquid, cream, or powder products, but I personally think it’s perfect for setting your under eye concealer with powder. This has become my new favourite! I dip this brush into some loose powder (like this one, or this one!

July’s package has some great brushes, but it wasn’t my personal favourite – mostly because 3 of them are made of animal hair. If you like some but not others, Morphe now gives you the option to swap certain brushes before you receive them!

If you’re wanting to expand your brush collection, you get a free brush (or points you can redeem for other fun products) if you join through my link here!

 

Check out my previous posts:

June 2018 On Instagram

Must-Have Blogging Courses

Easy Glam Tutorial