Could it be that summer is upon us?  The season to flash the flesh is well and truly approaching, which means it's time to get primped, preened and ready to bare.  

First step, hair removal.  Is it tmi to tell you that I can get a little lazy with this on my legs during winter?  Be honest, I know I'm not the only one!  I favour the convenience of a razor, although this can leave my skin feeling really irritated and it doesn't always give me a smooth finish for very long.  I'm debating testing out waxing, although my ideal would be to invest in a bit of laser hair removal with somewhere like sk:n.

Now for exfoliation.  I'm never sure whether to shave first, and after a bit of googling it seems that the jury's still out on this.  Apparently shaving is a natural exfoliator....some people say you get a closer shave if you've exfoliated first....others advise that you'll irritate your skin if you shave after exfoliation.  You tell me.  In general, I don't tend to shave and exfoliate on the same day, so I'm talking exfoliators in general here.  I love the Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub (review here) but also find that putting on an exfoliating glove and using it with a creamy body wash does the job rather well too.

Moisturiser is where I have an abundance of products.  I don't want to teach anybody to suck eggs here....you all know the importance of moisturising!  Especially if you're fake tanning, moisturiser is key to prolonging that tan for as long as possible.  How you choose to do it is a personal thing....body butters, lotions, dry oils....you name it, I've got it!  I'm loving the Vaseline Spray & Go in Cocoa Radiant for a quick step in my morning routine.

Finally, tan!  Another point up for debate is whether to moisturise first or not.  Personally I prefer not to, after being told it can create a barrier on the skin and stop the tan sinking in as well.  Instead, I like to spot-moisturise (as it were) and apply it only to drier areas like my knees, ankles and elbows.  I apply using a mitt and wipe a little of the tan across my hands before finishing with hand cream to blend it all in.  My tan of choice right now?  The L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Intense Elixir.  You apply it every night for 3 nights and you're left with a tan that should last for 2 weeks.  This wasn't the case for me, but I've found that 2 applications gives you a fairly decent colour that doesn't wear off too horrendously.

How do you tan?

tanning routine for summer

30.6.14

Could it be that summer is upon us?  The season to flash the flesh is well and truly approaching, which means it's time to get primped, preened and ready to bare.  

First step, hair removal.  Is it tmi to tell you that I can get a little lazy with this on my legs during winter?  Be honest, I know I'm not the only one!  I favour the convenience of a razor, although this can leave my skin feeling really irritated and it doesn't always give me a smooth finish for very long.  I'm debating testing out waxing, although my ideal would be to invest in a bit of laser hair removal with somewhere like sk:n.

Now for exfoliation.  I'm never sure whether to shave first, and after a bit of googling it seems that the jury's still out on this.  Apparently shaving is a natural exfoliator....some people say you get a closer shave if you've exfoliated first....others advise that you'll irritate your skin if you shave after exfoliation.  You tell me.  In general, I don't tend to shave and exfoliate on the same day, so I'm talking exfoliators in general here.  I love the Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub (review here) but also find that putting on an exfoliating glove and using it with a creamy body wash does the job rather well too.

Moisturiser is where I have an abundance of products.  I don't want to teach anybody to suck eggs here....you all know the importance of moisturising!  Especially if you're fake tanning, moisturiser is key to prolonging that tan for as long as possible.  How you choose to do it is a personal thing....body butters, lotions, dry oils....you name it, I've got it!  I'm loving the Vaseline Spray & Go in Cocoa Radiant for a quick step in my morning routine.

Finally, tan!  Another point up for debate is whether to moisturise first or not.  Personally I prefer not to, after being told it can create a barrier on the skin and stop the tan sinking in as well.  Instead, I like to spot-moisturise (as it were) and apply it only to drier areas like my knees, ankles and elbows.  I apply using a mitt and wipe a little of the tan across my hands before finishing with hand cream to blend it all in.  My tan of choice right now?  The L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Intense Elixir.  You apply it every night for 3 nights and you're left with a tan that should last for 2 weeks.  This wasn't the case for me, but I've found that 2 applications gives you a fairly decent colour that doesn't wear off too horrendously.

How do you tan?
In June...

...I turned 27.  Not 28, as Dad thought.

...I ate at Gourmet Burger Kitchen not once, but twice.  Within 7 days.  I'm becoming quite the burger connoisseur and that place is top of my list.

...I visited the Natural History Museum for the first time in 20 years.  Guess my job's not all bad really...

...I went segwaying!

...the new timetable launched at our gym and I've signed up to loads of new classes.  Body Combat is much harder than I thought (seriously, we're punching air??) but I've been really enjoying calming down and stretching afterwards with Body Balance.  The 7 minute relaxation section at the end is a lovely way to round off a busy Wednesday.

...we headed back down to Ikea and I spent my birthday money on a new make up station.

...I embarked on a journey to de-stress.  I've been reading lost about the causes of stress as a means to help me understand why I feel so overwhelmed at times.  I'm taking baby steps at the moment, but on a practical level I'm learning to try and find the positives throughout the day.

...I cut my hair!

Things that happened in: June

27.6.14

In June...

...I turned 27.  Not 28, as Dad thought.

...I ate at Gourmet Burger Kitchen not once, but twice.  Within 7 days.  I'm becoming quite the burger connoisseur and that place is top of my list.

...I visited the Natural History Museum for the first time in 20 years.  Guess my job's not all bad really...

...I went segwaying!

...the new timetable launched at our gym and I've signed up to loads of new classes.  Body Combat is much harder than I thought (seriously, we're punching air??) but I've been really enjoying calming down and stretching afterwards with Body Balance.  The 7 minute relaxation section at the end is a lovely way to round off a busy Wednesday.

...we headed back down to Ikea and I spent my birthday money on a new make up station.

...I embarked on a journey to de-stress.  I've been reading lost about the causes of stress as a means to help me understand why I feel so overwhelmed at times.  I'm taking baby steps at the moment, but on a practical level I'm learning to try and find the positives throughout the day.

...I cut my hair!
I'm always fascinated by how others blog.  Some people are highly organised, with notepads upon notepads of planning, whilst others are a little more impulsive, blogging as and when it takes their fancy.  I like to think I'm a bit of both; I have notebooks for planning, but on occasion (like with this post!) I prefer to deviate from the plan and blog what I fancy.  So with the focus of this post being on how I blog, let's split this up into bitesize chunks.

Before
I touched upon how I find some inspiration in this month's tips and tricks post with Leanne, and at the beginning of each month I draw up a planner in my notebook with different headings of topics and series I want to feature.  I have a few regular subjects that I cover each month, and the rest of the time I blog about whatever's interesting me at that moment in time.  And within that planner I also add in a couple of tick boxes to keep me on track with the next part of the blogging process....

During
When a blog post is in process, there's the age-old question: photos first, or writing?  I'm one of those people who needs a photo before they begin.  I just find it really hard to sit down and write without a visual alongside it.  And speaking of sitting, for the most part I choose to sit at my desk to do my blogging.  I do have the odd lazy day where I'm on the sofa in front of the tv, but I find I'm at my most productive from the comfort of my desk.  Working a full time job alongside blogging means that writing after work is a no-no, so I like to fit it all in at the weekend too.

After
Come Sunday evening, if the plan's gone well, I'll have edited relevant photos, drafted up my blog posts for the week and they'll be ready and waiting to go.  Then it's just a case of logging in during the week and hitting 'publish'.  Sometimes I can be a bit slack in the next area; social media promotion.  Luckily bloglovin automatically tweets out a link to new posts, but I aim to back this up with instagram posts, tweets and links via my facebook page.  I have tried to make use of hootsuite in the past, but I found that to be just as time consuming to schedule as just tweeting as and when!

And that's how I blog.  I think I've got a good balance between focus and flexibility....this system works for me!  I'd love to know how you blog though? 

Behind the scenes: how I blog

25.6.14

I'm always fascinated by how others blog.  Some people are highly organised, with notepads upon notepads of planning, whilst others are a little more impulsive, blogging as and when it takes their fancy.  I like to think I'm a bit of both; I have notebooks for planning, but on occasion (like with this post!) I prefer to deviate from the plan and blog what I fancy.  So with the focus of this post being on how I blog, let's split this up into bitesize chunks.

Before
I touched upon how I find some inspiration in this month's tips and tricks post with Leanne, and at the beginning of each month I draw up a planner in my notebook with different headings of topics and series I want to feature.  I have a few regular subjects that I cover each month, and the rest of the time I blog about whatever's interesting me at that moment in time.  And within that planner I also add in a couple of tick boxes to keep me on track with the next part of the blogging process....

During
When a blog post is in process, there's the age-old question: photos first, or writing?  I'm one of those people who needs a photo before they begin.  I just find it really hard to sit down and write without a visual alongside it.  And speaking of sitting, for the most part I choose to sit at my desk to do my blogging.  I do have the odd lazy day where I'm on the sofa in front of the tv, but I find I'm at my most productive from the comfort of my desk.  Working a full time job alongside blogging means that writing after work is a no-no, so I like to fit it all in at the weekend too.

After
Come Sunday evening, if the plan's gone well, I'll have edited relevant photos, drafted up my blog posts for the week and they'll be ready and waiting to go.  Then it's just a case of logging in during the week and hitting 'publish'.  Sometimes I can be a bit slack in the next area; social media promotion.  Luckily bloglovin automatically tweets out a link to new posts, but I aim to back this up with instagram posts, tweets and links via my facebook page.  I have tried to make use of hootsuite in the past, but I found that to be just as time consuming to schedule as just tweeting as and when!

And that's how I blog.  I think I've got a good balance between focus and flexibility....this system works for me!  I'd love to know how you blog though? 

This week's video was a step away from the usual beauty babble, but the sort of topic I've wanted to feature for a while.  I love books, and if you do too you should give this a watch.  Six of my all-time favourite books that I'd take away with me to a desert island and never get bored.

What are your favourite books?

- Direct link here -

video: desert island books

24.6.14


This week's video was a step away from the usual beauty babble, but the sort of topic I've wanted to feature for a while.  I love books, and if you do too you should give this a watch.  Six of my all-time favourite books that I'd take away with me to a desert island and never get bored.

What are your favourite books?

- Direct link here -
We've all been there.  Sometimes you're raring to go with blogging; buzzing with ideas and eager to sit down and write.  Other times a whole weekend can pass you by, and before you know it it's Sunday night and you just can't face the prospect of turning on the computer to blog.  It happens.  Listen up though, here are mine and Leanne's top tips for beating blogger's block.
Leanne's tips:

1. Swap things around
Are you a beauty blogger? Then how about trying something a little out of your comfort zone and put together some outfit posts, or just talk about fashion in general? It might be the case that it’s the first time your readers will get to see what you look like! This rule obviously also applies if you are a fashion based blogger… feature something beauty specific, a 'what's in your makeup bag' post, or share your favourite nail polish shades! In all fairness this can apply to bloggers in all categories. Switch it up a bit and try a different genre. You could even end up creating an entire new series of posts for your blog.

2. Try your hand at Lifestyle Blogging 
Leading on from my first point, you could try your hand at lifestyle blogging. This doesn’t mean you have to share everything you get up to on your blog. Just snippets. Maybe you went on a nice day out at the weekend and took some photographs you would like to share. Perhaps you’ve got a room in your home that you are really proud of and want to show it off? Lifestyle blogging has such a wide spectrum of topics you could cover. All you need to do is head to bloglovin’ look through the lifestyle blogs and the inspiration literally is just there right in your face!

3. Sharing! 
Do you have a hidden talent when it comes to the kitchen and you can knock up some brilliant cakes or meals? Share your recipes. I know whenever I have posted a recipe post on my blog I have always had a good response! Cake…everyone loves cake. Or if you are into your music how about recommending some new artists/bands to check out, or maybe venues you think are worth going along to. You might sit and think ‘Oh people don’t want to know that’…but you won’t know until you hit that publish button. On occasions it’s the posts that are a bit different to the norm that get the best response!

My tricks:

1. Get reading
You could just go it alone when it comes to blogging, but I think it's hard to keep in touch with what the trends are and what people want to read if you're blinkered and don't pay attention to what's going on around you.  Get reading magazines and other blogs to draw some inspiration and give you new ideas.  I'm not saying copy, not by any means, but there's no harm in seeing what's out there.  No one can do it all on their own!  At the beginning of each month I sit down with my magazine subscriptions and leaf through to find out what's up and coming in the world of fashion and beauty, and see what I can take on board, adapt, and make work for my blog.

2. Go shopping
Sometimes you just can't beat a crisp new notebook.  Perhaps it's because I'm a visual person, but I feel so much better starting afresh with new stationary.  I feel all professional and organised, like I'm a Proper Blogger, and can face planning stuff out and getting on top of blogging again.
On the flip side...the more you shop, the more you have to blog about!  If you're a beauty blogger stuck in a rut, why not treat yourself to some new make up so you've something to play around with and review on your blog.

3. Go outside
Blogging can be a pretty solitary hobby.  For the most part, you take photos alone, you edit alone, you write....alone.  See where this is going?  I'm also quite an addictive person, and can easily while away hours sat on the laptop window shopping doing 'blog research'.  Taking some time to leave the laptop off and spend the day out and about can really help to give you some perspective.  Plus, you never know what you might find to blog about when you're not sat at a desk!

And those are our 6 tips!  Let us know what your favourite ways to garner a bit of inspiration and get back into blogging are down below.

tips & tricks: beating blogger's block

23.6.14

We've all been there.  Sometimes you're raring to go with blogging; buzzing with ideas and eager to sit down and write.  Other times a whole weekend can pass you by, and before you know it it's Sunday night and you just can't face the prospect of turning on the computer to blog.  It happens.  Listen up though, here are mine and Leanne's top tips for beating blogger's block.
Leanne's tips:

1. Swap things around
Are you a beauty blogger? Then how about trying something a little out of your comfort zone and put together some outfit posts, or just talk about fashion in general? It might be the case that it’s the first time your readers will get to see what you look like! This rule obviously also applies if you are a fashion based blogger… feature something beauty specific, a 'what's in your makeup bag' post, or share your favourite nail polish shades! In all fairness this can apply to bloggers in all categories. Switch it up a bit and try a different genre. You could even end up creating an entire new series of posts for your blog.

2. Try your hand at Lifestyle Blogging 
Leading on from my first point, you could try your hand at lifestyle blogging. This doesn’t mean you have to share everything you get up to on your blog. Just snippets. Maybe you went on a nice day out at the weekend and took some photographs you would like to share. Perhaps you’ve got a room in your home that you are really proud of and want to show it off? Lifestyle blogging has such a wide spectrum of topics you could cover. All you need to do is head to bloglovin’ look through the lifestyle blogs and the inspiration literally is just there right in your face!

3. Sharing! 
Do you have a hidden talent when it comes to the kitchen and you can knock up some brilliant cakes or meals? Share your recipes. I know whenever I have posted a recipe post on my blog I have always had a good response! Cake…everyone loves cake. Or if you are into your music how about recommending some new artists/bands to check out, or maybe venues you think are worth going along to. You might sit and think ‘Oh people don’t want to know that’…but you won’t know until you hit that publish button. On occasions it’s the posts that are a bit different to the norm that get the best response!

My tricks:

1. Get reading
You could just go it alone when it comes to blogging, but I think it's hard to keep in touch with what the trends are and what people want to read if you're blinkered and don't pay attention to what's going on around you.  Get reading magazines and other blogs to draw some inspiration and give you new ideas.  I'm not saying copy, not by any means, but there's no harm in seeing what's out there.  No one can do it all on their own!  At the beginning of each month I sit down with my magazine subscriptions and leaf through to find out what's up and coming in the world of fashion and beauty, and see what I can take on board, adapt, and make work for my blog.

2. Go shopping
Sometimes you just can't beat a crisp new notebook.  Perhaps it's because I'm a visual person, but I feel so much better starting afresh with new stationary.  I feel all professional and organised, like I'm a Proper Blogger, and can face planning stuff out and getting on top of blogging again.
On the flip side...the more you shop, the more you have to blog about!  If you're a beauty blogger stuck in a rut, why not treat yourself to some new make up so you've something to play around with and review on your blog.

3. Go outside
Blogging can be a pretty solitary hobby.  For the most part, you take photos alone, you edit alone, you write....alone.  See where this is going?  I'm also quite an addictive person, and can easily while away hours sat on the laptop window shopping doing 'blog research'.  Taking some time to leave the laptop off and spend the day out and about can really help to give you some perspective.  Plus, you never know what you might find to blog about when you're not sat at a desk!

And those are our 6 tips!  Let us know what your favourite ways to garner a bit of inspiration and get back into blogging are down below.
Image found via pinterest
 
Blogs::
- I've found that Katie's blog has been giving me a break from the norm recently.  Her blog posts are thought-provoking, relevant and just a little different from the fashion and beauty babble that so often consumes my thoughts.
- Whilst most people seem to love etsy, I really struggle with it.  There are gems to be had but I just can't find them.  Which is why Yara's blog post was so helpful.  I'm a massive fan of her blog anyway, and this post just gave me another reason to love it.  First on my list is one of those typography prints.

YouTube::
- How awesome was it to watch an Alexa Chung tutorial done on the lady herself?!  If you haven't seen it yet, go and check it out.  Definitely need to start practising my winged liner again.
- I've been a fan of Roisin Thora's channel for a while now, but for some reason always neglect to mention her.  I watch a lot of YouTube but I love the fact that Roisin isn't afraid to be real on her channel.  And I don't mean that contrived "I've added bloopers of me being 'naturally' cutesy and funny" type of real.  Just watch her videos to see what I mean.

Shopping::
- Getting my legs out in the heat at work isn't really an option for me, so I've been obsessed with patterned trousers lately.  I made a sneaky birthday purchase of a pair, but that hasn't stopped me spending a crazy amount of time looking at more online!
- I'm in the market to buy a new camera lens and I think it'll be the 35mm that I'll go for.  I've got a Nikon, but the 50mm lens I have doesn't autofocus and if what I read online is true, the 35mm will.  If anyone can verify this, please let me know below!

General::
- I instagrammed this photo of cheesecake brownies I'd made for work and thought I'd share the recipe on here.  Then I realised it's much easier to share the link to the recipe direct, so here it is!
- I'm on a mission to ditch the stress and get happier.  Some serious reassessment has been going on, and the book and app which accompany this website have been really helpful.

bookmarked #3

20.6.14

Image found via pinterest
 
Blogs::
- I've found that Katie's blog has been giving me a break from the norm recently.  Her blog posts are thought-provoking, relevant and just a little different from the fashion and beauty babble that so often consumes my thoughts.
- Whilst most people seem to love etsy, I really struggle with it.  There are gems to be had but I just can't find them.  Which is why Yara's blog post was so helpful.  I'm a massive fan of her blog anyway, and this post just gave me another reason to love it.  First on my list is one of those typography prints.

YouTube::
- How awesome was it to watch an Alexa Chung tutorial done on the lady herself?!  If you haven't seen it yet, go and check it out.  Definitely need to start practising my winged liner again.
- I've been a fan of Roisin Thora's channel for a while now, but for some reason always neglect to mention her.  I watch a lot of YouTube but I love the fact that Roisin isn't afraid to be real on her channel.  And I don't mean that contrived "I've added bloopers of me being 'naturally' cutesy and funny" type of real.  Just watch her videos to see what I mean.

Shopping::
- Getting my legs out in the heat at work isn't really an option for me, so I've been obsessed with patterned trousers lately.  I made a sneaky birthday purchase of a pair, but that hasn't stopped me spending a crazy amount of time looking at more online!
- I'm in the market to buy a new camera lens and I think it'll be the 35mm that I'll go for.  I've got a Nikon, but the 50mm lens I have doesn't autofocus and if what I read online is true, the 35mm will.  If anyone can verify this, please let me know below!

General::
- I instagrammed this photo of cheesecake brownies I'd made for work and thought I'd share the recipe on here.  Then I realised it's much easier to share the link to the recipe direct, so here it is!
- I'm on a mission to ditch the stress and get happier.  Some serious reassessment has been going on, and the book and app which accompany this website have been really helpful.

I've got my dream wardobe, but when it comes to the rest of our bedroom things were a little lacking. So when the lovely people at from Asda got in touch asking if I'd like to take part in a campaign featuring some of their new George Home products, I knew exactly which room I'd tackle.  Armed with some spending money and the challenge of doing up our favourite "hub" in the house, I happily set to work browsing the website.

First on my wishlist was some new bedding.  We've got a couple of statement sets, but I've wanted some more basic pieces for a while.  Even before being offered some money to spend, I thought Asda would be my best bet to find what we wanted without breaking the bank....I just never got round to actually purchasing anything.  In the end I opted for this grey marl set and a plain, crisp white offering to rotate with.  This grey jersey one is so soft.  Seriously.  It's soft and stretchy and is a lot like going to bed in my favourite cudsie clothes.  The white (currently in the wash!) isn't as soft, more like sheets in general, but is exactly what we wanted.

The fur throw you can see has been a godsend in this hot weather.  When I don't fancy getting under our hefty duvet I've been sleeping on top with this over me to keep the chill off.  Admittedly it looks better with the white sheets, but it ticks the 'decorative throw' box and has a more practical use too.  Bonus!

Less practical are the cushions.  These were on 3 for £10 so I figured they'd be worth a go.  I never thought I'd be *that* person decorating the bed with cushions, and am on the fence about whether they're really me or not.  But that's cushions in general.  More specifically, I chose these ones in a really nice vibrant green, to add an accent colour to our otherwise grey room.  The cream one (which is much whiter in person that it appears online)is nice and soft, and together they make the bed that little bit more cosy.  Between you and I, I think I am a cushion convert.

Finally, the lamp.  I have a bedside lamp at last!  Tell me, who actually likes reading in bed and having to get up to turn the light off?  Not me.  I love the glass mosaic detailing on this one, and think it fits in really well with the tones in the room.

I'm pretty chuffed with the update to our bedroom!  They're all practical purchase that I'd never otherwise get round to making, and the quality of everything I've been sent is really good.  Stand out product is definitely the bedding, so I'd recommend checking at Asda next time you're after something new.  They have some lovely decorative duvet sets as well.

Would you have thought of going to Asda for your homeware?

Interior updates with George Home

18.6.14

I've got my dream wardobe, but when it comes to the rest of our bedroom things were a little lacking. So when the lovely people at from Asda got in touch asking if I'd like to take part in a campaign featuring some of their new George Home products, I knew exactly which room I'd tackle.  Armed with some spending money and the challenge of doing up our favourite "hub" in the house, I happily set to work browsing the website.

First on my wishlist was some new bedding.  We've got a couple of statement sets, but I've wanted some more basic pieces for a while.  Even before being offered some money to spend, I thought Asda would be my best bet to find what we wanted without breaking the bank....I just never got round to actually purchasing anything.  In the end I opted for this grey marl set and a plain, crisp white offering to rotate with.  This grey jersey one is so soft.  Seriously.  It's soft and stretchy and is a lot like going to bed in my favourite cudsie clothes.  The white (currently in the wash!) isn't as soft, more like sheets in general, but is exactly what we wanted.

The fur throw you can see has been a godsend in this hot weather.  When I don't fancy getting under our hefty duvet I've been sleeping on top with this over me to keep the chill off.  Admittedly it looks better with the white sheets, but it ticks the 'decorative throw' box and has a more practical use too.  Bonus!

Less practical are the cushions.  These were on 3 for £10 so I figured they'd be worth a go.  I never thought I'd be *that* person decorating the bed with cushions, and am on the fence about whether they're really me or not.  But that's cushions in general.  More specifically, I chose these ones in a really nice vibrant green, to add an accent colour to our otherwise grey room.  The cream one (which is much whiter in person that it appears online)is nice and soft, and together they make the bed that little bit more cosy.  Between you and I, I think I am a cushion convert.

Finally, the lamp.  I have a bedside lamp at last!  Tell me, who actually likes reading in bed and having to get up to turn the light off?  Not me.  I love the glass mosaic detailing on this one, and think it fits in really well with the tones in the room.

I'm pretty chuffed with the update to our bedroom!  They're all practical purchase that I'd never otherwise get round to making, and the quality of everything I've been sent is really good.  Stand out product is definitely the bedding, so I'd recommend checking at Asda next time you're after something new.  They have some lovely decorative duvet sets as well.

Would you have thought of going to Asda for your homeware?
Oh, that awful Americanism.  What even is a drugstore, when it comes to the UK?  Well....Boots and Superdrug, but that's not quite so snappy is it?  So I'm afraid I've conformed to the masses with the title of this video, but if you'd like to see the products sold in Boots and Superdrug that I love, click play!

- Direct link here -

Video: Things I love from the drugstore

17.6.14

Oh, that awful Americanism.  What even is a drugstore, when it comes to the UK?  Well....Boots and Superdrug, but that's not quite so snappy is it?  So I'm afraid I've conformed to the masses with the title of this video, but if you'd like to see the products sold in Boots and Superdrug that I love, click play!

- Direct link here -
Without doubt, the bob hair cut is *the* style of the moment.  I've had mine for about a year now and to be honest, I'm beginning to get bored.  Until an afternoon spent on pinterest that is.  Now I'm full of inspiration and can't wait to get playing around with these quick fixes to update my hair!  So here's my shortlist:

- go care-free with these undone curls -
- cut in a heavy fringe -
- get instant fringe-regret and plait it and pin it back -
- perfect these beachy waves -
- go for a deep side-parting and go for sleek locks with volume at the crown -
- work out how to get this low-maintenance straight, textured hair -

Any other bob updates I should try?

6: ways to update your bob

16.6.14

Without doubt, the bob hair cut is *the* style of the moment.  I've had mine for about a year now and to be honest, I'm beginning to get bored.  Until an afternoon spent on pinterest that is.  Now I'm full of inspiration and can't wait to get playing around with these quick fixes to update my hair!  So here's my shortlist:

- go care-free with these undone curls -
- cut in a heavy fringe -
- get instant fringe-regret and plait it and pin it back -
- perfect these beachy waves -
- go for a deep side-parting and go for sleek locks with volume at the crown -
- work out how to get this low-maintenance straight, textured hair -

Any other bob updates I should try?
This week's video is a bit of a different one for me. Seeing as the week before last was half term, I thought I'd bring the camera around with me and do a spot of vlogging.  It's a work in progress, as I seem to be quite good at forgetting to sign off at the end of each day, but it is something I'd like to do more of.

Please do let me know what you think, and whether it's something I should pursue and do a bit more regularly!

Direct link here.

Video: VLOG: Shopping, shopping and...shopping?

10.6.14

This week's video is a bit of a different one for me. Seeing as the week before last was half term, I thought I'd bring the camera around with me and do a spot of vlogging.  It's a work in progress, as I seem to be quite good at forgetting to sign off at the end of each day, but it is something I'd like to do more of.

Please do let me know what you think, and whether it's something I should pursue and do a bit more regularly!

Direct link here.
Although the title of this post does sound slightly drugs-related, I can assure you it's not!  I've been enjoying using some fairly simple products that I can switch around for quick results in my make up routine lately, so I thought I'd share them with you!

Let's start with the newest additions to my collection.  Skin-wise, I've been loving the 17 Skin Wow! products.  My skin's seemed really dull and powdery lately, so a layer of the 3 in 1 Highlighter under my foundation has really given my skin a boost.  A pump of the Tan Glow warms up my foundation a treat, whilst the Instant Glow Shimmer Brick is *the* prettiest highlighter I've found on the high street.  FYI, 17 is 3 for 2 at the moment (hence the triple whammy) but I'm really chuffed with my choices and urge you to give them a try.

Focusing on eyes, I have a few combinations I'm loving.  MAC Constructivist paint pot (not pictured) is a long-term love so not really worth a mention, but a layer of Melba Loose Pigment really transforms it into a beautiful shimmery smoky eye.  If you want to see it in situ, have a look at my favourites video because I'm wearing it there.  Alternatively, a quick swipe of MAC's Sea Worship eye shadow from the recent Alluring Aquatics collection is giving me a khaki-toned golden eye which adds something a little different.  Finally, if I'm going for full on gold, it's got to be MAC's Sweet Satisfaction blended out with a dab of the L'Oreal Color Riche L'Ombre Pure in Nude 204.  There are a couple of different "nudes" in the range, and this is a beautiful intense gold.  They're infused with gel and gives a really lovely, almost wet-look, to the eyes.

And my recent lipstick of choice was an impulse purchase picked up en route to the checkout.  Maybelline's Colour Sensational Nude in Tantalizing Taupe is the perfect brown/beige-toned nude for that 90s look doing the rounds at the moment.

And finally, some old favourites that have worked their way back into circulation; MAC Powersurge eyeliner for the perfect subtle definition, while Revlon's Nearly Naked foundation is giving me the perfect light coverage for summer.

Which make up products are floating your boat recently?

Using recently

9.6.14

Although the title of this post does sound slightly drugs-related, I can assure you it's not!  I've been enjoying using some fairly simple products that I can switch around for quick results in my make up routine lately, so I thought I'd share them with you!

Let's start with the newest additions to my collection.  Skin-wise, I've been loving the 17 Skin Wow! products.  My skin's seemed really dull and powdery lately, so a layer of the 3 in 1 Highlighter under my foundation has really given my skin a boost.  A pump of the Tan Glow warms up my foundation a treat, whilst the Instant Glow Shimmer Brick is *the* prettiest highlighter I've found on the high street.  FYI, 17 is 3 for 2 at the moment (hence the triple whammy) but I'm really chuffed with my choices and urge you to give them a try.

Focusing on eyes, I have a few combinations I'm loving.  MAC Constructivist paint pot (not pictured) is a long-term love so not really worth a mention, but a layer of Melba Loose Pigment really transforms it into a beautiful shimmery smoky eye.  If you want to see it in situ, have a look at my favourites video because I'm wearing it there.  Alternatively, a quick swipe of MAC's Sea Worship eye shadow from the recent Alluring Aquatics collection is giving me a khaki-toned golden eye which adds something a little different.  Finally, if I'm going for full on gold, it's got to be MAC's Sweet Satisfaction blended out with a dab of the L'Oreal Color Riche L'Ombre Pure in Nude 204.  There are a couple of different "nudes" in the range, and this is a beautiful intense gold.  They're infused with gel and gives a really lovely, almost wet-look, to the eyes.

And my recent lipstick of choice was an impulse purchase picked up en route to the checkout.  Maybelline's Colour Sensational Nude in Tantalizing Taupe is the perfect brown/beige-toned nude for that 90s look doing the rounds at the moment.

And finally, some old favourites that have worked their way back into circulation; MAC Powersurge eyeliner for the perfect subtle definition, while Revlon's Nearly Naked foundation is giving me the perfect light coverage for summer.

Which make up products are floating your boat recently?
Most of us love a good contour, but have you heard?  There's a new way to do it....

TRY IT:
1.  Apply a light wash of bronzer, then pick your matte blusher to apply as a contour.
2. This is going higher than regular contour; apply it in the same sort of place, but blend it up onto your cheeks as well.
3. Go for subtle, skin-like colours.  I'm wearing MAC's Melba in this pic, but Sleek's Suede and Fashionista's Butterscotch are also good shouts.
4. Load up on highlighter to contrast and further enhance the illusion of chiselled cheekbones.

THE VERDICT:
I love this!  It's cuts down a step in my make up routine, making it quick enough to do in a rush or when you're having a lazy Sunday.  It's also a little more user-friendly than your standard contouring routine, which I think has quite a bit of room for error.  Just remember not to go wild with your colour choice....no statement cheeks here!

Try the Trend: blush as contour

6.6.14

Most of us love a good contour, but have you heard?  There's a new way to do it....

TRY IT:
1.  Apply a light wash of bronzer, then pick your matte blusher to apply as a contour.
2. This is going higher than regular contour; apply it in the same sort of place, but blend it up onto your cheeks as well.
3. Go for subtle, skin-like colours.  I'm wearing MAC's Melba in this pic, but Sleek's Suede and Fashionista's Butterscotch are also good shouts.
4. Load up on highlighter to contrast and further enhance the illusion of chiselled cheekbones.

THE VERDICT:
I love this!  It's cuts down a step in my make up routine, making it quick enough to do in a rush or when you're having a lazy Sunday.  It's also a little more user-friendly than your standard contouring routine, which I think has quite a bit of room for error.  Just remember not to go wild with your colour choice....no statement cheeks here!
I'm quite excited about this month's challenge!  I love finding new places, and the thought of hopping in the car and seeing where the wind takes us is something really appealing to me.

It's my birthday this month and Zara's right at the beginning of July, so hopefully we can tie a day trip in as sort of a girlie birthday treat.  I'm not sure where to head - a shopping destination, a sight-seeing day, a cultural trip (somehow I think Zara will vote "no" to that!) or some time in the fresh air and countryside....the possibilities are endless!  If you have any suggestions for us, then please do leave them below.  Otherwise it may just be a case of sticking a pin in a map and heading in that direction.  Either way it'll be fun!

Making Memories: June

4.6.14

I'm quite excited about this month's challenge!  I love finding new places, and the thought of hopping in the car and seeing where the wind takes us is something really appealing to me.

It's my birthday this month and Zara's right at the beginning of July, so hopefully we can tie a day trip in as sort of a girlie birthday treat.  I'm not sure where to head - a shopping destination, a sight-seeing day, a cultural trip (somehow I think Zara will vote "no" to that!) or some time in the fresh air and countryside....the possibilities are endless!  If you have any suggestions for us, then please do leave them below.  Otherwise it may just be a case of sticking a pin in a map and heading in that direction.  Either way it'll be fun!
On Sunday I popped a video up on my YouTube channel; Five Forgotten Favourites.  If you haven't seen these videos before, they're my take on a favourites video where instead of picking new products that I'm excited about using, I can only choose things that I've owned for quite a while and either have forgotten about, or use all the time without every giving them any credit.

Enjoy!

- Direct link here -

Video: Five Forgotten Favourites - May

3.6.14

On Sunday I popped a video up on my YouTube channel; Five Forgotten Favourites.  If you haven't seen these videos before, they're my take on a favourites video where instead of picking new products that I'm excited about using, I can only choose things that I've owned for quite a while and either have forgotten about, or use all the time without every giving them any credit.

Enjoy!

- Direct link here -
Hands up, who here is actually loyal to one brand of skincare?  We're a fickle bunch, so when I was contacted with the suggestion of a new luxury cleanser to try out, I couldn't resist.

The Claudia Louch Natural Skin Clinic Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover is fancy.  The packaging is unlike anything I own and looks really sleek nestled in with my other lotions and potions.  I'd never heard of the brand before, but Claudia is an internationally-renowned holistic skin specialist, nutritionist and health scientist with her own clinic in Harley Street.  I think it's safe to say that your skin's in good hands with this one!

My eyes can be a little temperamental, so I always approach new products with a little trepidation.  This is 94% natural, hypoallergenic and has active ingredients such as cucumber and chamomile and feels really gentle on the skin.  My only bug bear with this is that is that I like my cotton pad to be soaked when I take off my makeup.  This has a pump action and I feel like it takes a lot of squirts to get the pad anywhere near as saturated as I like it.

That being said, it doesn't rub or pull at my eyes and does a decent job of removing all traces of eye makeup fairly quickly.  I have found the odd bit of mascara still clinging the next morning but in all honesty that's probably due to my own laziness and isn't a problem that's specific to this remover.

There's a bit of a sting in the tail with this one, though.  It's £37.50 for 40ml, and when you compare it to the L'Oreal micellar solution coming in at £4.99 for 200ml which does equally as good a job, there's no denying that this is pricey.  While I doubt that I'd ever feel flush enough to repurchase, I do feel more satisfied that the Claudia Louch is doing a much better job of nourishing and protecting my skin than bogstandard L'Oreal does.  So if you're in the market for a costly, all-singing all-dancing, makeup remover this may be one to consider.


First impressions: Claudia Louch Natural Skin Clinic Oil-Free Makeup Remover

2.6.14

Hands up, who here is actually loyal to one brand of skincare?  We're a fickle bunch, so when I was contacted with the suggestion of a new luxury cleanser to try out, I couldn't resist.

The Claudia Louch Natural Skin Clinic Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover is fancy.  The packaging is unlike anything I own and looks really sleek nestled in with my other lotions and potions.  I'd never heard of the brand before, but Claudia is an internationally-renowned holistic skin specialist, nutritionist and health scientist with her own clinic in Harley Street.  I think it's safe to say that your skin's in good hands with this one!

My eyes can be a little temperamental, so I always approach new products with a little trepidation.  This is 94% natural, hypoallergenic and has active ingredients such as cucumber and chamomile and feels really gentle on the skin.  My only bug bear with this is that is that I like my cotton pad to be soaked when I take off my makeup.  This has a pump action and I feel like it takes a lot of squirts to get the pad anywhere near as saturated as I like it.

That being said, it doesn't rub or pull at my eyes and does a decent job of removing all traces of eye makeup fairly quickly.  I have found the odd bit of mascara still clinging the next morning but in all honesty that's probably due to my own laziness and isn't a problem that's specific to this remover.

There's a bit of a sting in the tail with this one, though.  It's £37.50 for 40ml, and when you compare it to the L'Oreal micellar solution coming in at £4.99 for 200ml which does equally as good a job, there's no denying that this is pricey.  While I doubt that I'd ever feel flush enough to repurchase, I do feel more satisfied that the Claudia Louch is doing a much better job of nourishing and protecting my skin than bogstandard L'Oreal does.  So if you're in the market for a costly, all-singing all-dancing, makeup remover this may be one to consider.


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