Sunday, 30 June 2013

Flower Girl

// Dress: Asos // Belt, Headband & Sandals: Primark //

I was in Primark with a friend who said that this headband looks like something a flower girl should wear at a wedding - I ignored her and bought it anyway :)

The sun has come out today so I wore this outfit for a wonder round town with Josh. He then had to head off and do some stuff at his office so I carried on and did a little shopping. It was nothing exciting at all but I bought my salad for lunches this week at work, an umbrella (for when the rain inevitably comes back), some plastic tupperware and a Starbucks mocha cookie crumble frappucino. Quite a weird little selection but I didn't find any clothes I wanted to buy and these were a few things I needed.

Since I've been back I've made fresh strawberry and banana smoothies for me and Josh and I will also be be making super healthy banana and oat 'cookies', for those mornings when I don't have time to eat my usual porridge. They're basically banana and oats mashed together and cooked into chemical/sugar/additive free cereal bars :)

Later on we will be settling down on the sofa to watch one of our all time favourite bands, Mumford & Sons, live (via the telly) at Glastonbury! I wish I was there so bad, but this will do anyway!

I love lazy Sundays in the sunshine, I wish every day could be like this - so simple and carefree - but life's not always quite like that :)

What have you been doing today? x
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Friday, 28 June 2013

Sorry to be 'that guy'...

... asking you to follow on Bloglovin' but since I've just hit 700 GFC followers (which is crazy), I just wanted to remind you all that you can also follow me on Bloglovin' too.

I also just wanted to mention that as far as I've heard, it's only Google Reader that will be leaving us on Monday. Google Reader is an RSS feed which allows people to follow blogs they like, it is not the same as following a blog through GFC. Based on this, I don't think that the GFC widget, in the sidebar of most of our favourite blogs, will be disappearing - so do not fear.

However, I am not certain whether the Reading List present on your Blogger dashboard is powered by, or linked to, Google Reader. So we'll have to see on Monday whether that's still there! That is the only downside for me (if it happens) of Google Reader closing. You will still have followers, but they may not be able to see your posts through the traditional reading list any more.

If this does happen then you can just import the blogs you follow through GFC onto Bloglovin'. Just go to your settings on Bloglovin', scroll all the way to the bottom and click 'import blogs'. I have already done this and I'm getting to grips with reading blogs through there... just in case!

So anyway, that's my little thoughts on the subject - let's wait and see what happens! Remember to follow me on Bloglovin' here, but you can also keep up with my posts on Twitter here. x

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Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Perricone MD skincare

Perricone MD Acyl Discovery set* - available at QVC

When thinking of QVC I immediately think of the TV channel, I've never bought anything from the channel and to be completely honest I'm not sure if I would. Online shopping has been around for pretty much the whole time I've had my own money to spend, so I was never really drawn in to heading to TV channels for bargains.

However, I'm not sure why I haven't thought of this before, but QVC do in fact have a website where you can purchase the same products as on the channel. In the future I'll definitely be checking their website for beauty bargains! I've already spotted deals on Benefit, Clarisonic, Liz Earle and more.

I've never tried any Perricone products before, so took the chance to trial it out when approached for this post. The whole set contains miniature versions of daily, anti-aging essentials. It might not be completely neccessary for me to use anti-aging products just yet (I hope), but it can't hurt!

The cleanser is a really gentle, foaming product which is great. I hate anything that feels harsh on my skin. Your face is left really clean after using this product, but doesn't feel stripped of softness at all. The cleanser has a very floral scent - a theme which runs through the whole set - which is quite strong and could be off putting if you're not into that kinda thing. I don't really mind the smell, as it's only around when using the product and doesn't linger on the skin after use. 

The moisturiser is lovely and sinks straight into your skin, leaving it feeling incredibly soft and supple. I've been using this when my skin needs a real treat, I wouldn't use it as an everyday moisturiser as it could be slightly too heavy. The Acyl-Glutathione is a product designed to address deep lines and wrinkles - so I haven't actually got much to test this on :/ I might pass it on to my mom and let you know how she gets on ;) - Hi Gwend.

Finally, the No Foundation Foundation. The name is a great description for this product, it evens out the skin without looking cakey or dry - it doesn't really look like you're wearing foundation at all, but your skin just looks.. nice! Unfortunately, due to my super pale face, this is too dark for me to wear properly. 

Have you ever tried any Perricone MD products? Or have you considered buying anything from QVC? Let me know your thoughts :) x

Sunday, 23 June 2013

HD Brows don't just do eyebrows?!

HD Brows have been long known for their professional brow treatments and products but I have to admit that I wasn't familiar with the rest of their products. HD Brows actually create a range of other products, from foundations and blushers like above to bronzers, makeup brushes and more.

I received the powder foundation in the lightest shade (01), because I am pale as the moon, but the range provides 6 shades in total. The product is a very fine powder that is completely soft and smooth to the touch. I have chosen to wear this as a setting powder over BB cream, however it could easily be used on it's own. Being a compact mineral foundation, the product can be built and built on the skin until you've achieved the desired coverage. This is a great multi-use product, as a light setting powder or a heavier coverage on it's own and it's so easy to blend onto the skin using a brush. 

The blusher is the perfect dusty/burnt rose shade, my first choice colour for daytime wear. My MAC mineralise blusher in 'Dainty' has just run out, so I think this HD Brows product will quickly become it's replacement! Same as the foundation, it is an incredibly smooth and soft product making it so easy to seamlessly blend on top of the foundation. The colour can again be built up gradually, until you reach your preferred shade. The blusher comes with a round sponge applicator which I find slightly odd, but it's my personal preference to use brushes for my makeup rather than sponges, so this might be a great bonus for the product for some people. 

HD Brows have proven that they're not just good at eyebrows with these products, I'm really impressed with the quality and also the lasting power. The powder keeps my skin looking matte all day long and the blusher stays put just as long. Have you ever tried any of the HD Brows products? Did you know they had branched out from eyebrows? 


 In other news, I've had a slight blog design change recently. Nothing major, but changed some colours, added the label buttons and social media icons in the left sidebar and removed some dotted break lines throughout the blog. For some reason I can't change my post title colour, which is really annoying :( I think I've found the right bit in the html, but whenever I change the colour code it doesn't do anything! If anyone could help I would be so grateful :) What do you think of the little changes? x

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Thursday, 20 June 2013

Confessions of a blogger

Confessions of A Blogger - I saw this little tag on Michelle's blog the other day and thought I would have a go myself. My blog has been very focused on reviews, swatches and recipes etc recently, so I wanted to get back to the personal style of writing I used when I first started my blog. I'm not a serious beauty or fashion writer, so I don't want to feel like I have to write my blog in that style! 

When did you start your blog?
I started my current blog back on the 9th March 2012, so it's a little over 1 year old :) I didn't really know what I wanted to write about, I just wanted another little space on the internet to write my thoughts, experiences and get involved with a new community.

Have you had any other online presences?

I've been on many different online platforms in the past. I started off with using the internet for MSN, but quickly moved onto MySpace, Bebo, Piczo and of course Facebook (even though I was a die-hard MySpace fan, I never thought I'd fall into the Facebook trap... but look at me now). I have also had a  tumblr account, which I attempted to use as a blog like this, but quickly fell into reblogging everything and anything. I did also have a previous blogspot blog when I was around 16, however I'm not sure why but I didn't really get into it like I have with this blog. Maybe it's because I'm older now and do more interesting things? Or the fact that the only blogs I followed were high end, more professional style blogs - who knows! I wish I'd stuck at it as a 16 year old though and fallen into the blogging community back then.

Why did you start a blog?
This time around, I had just started working in a digital marketing agency in a job role that dealt directly with bloggers, so being exposed to so many gorgeous blogs every day made me want to start my own up again. Bloggers were all so lovely to email too, that I wanted to get involved myself!

When did you become serious about starting a blog?
I still don't take blogging very seriously :/ unfortunately, due to working full time and enjoying a busy social life (sometimes), it means that my blog does often take a back seat at times. I don't ever imagine myself becoming a serious, 'professional' blogger or anything like that - this is just a hobby I enjoy for now :)

What was your first post?

You have the joy of being able to read my first post here. As I had read so many blogs prior to starting my own, I had a fairly good idea that I wanted to start off with a small introduction... but then the following posts just fell into a cringey mess haha.

What has been your biggest challenge about blogging?

My biggest challenge has been keeping up with posting. I went through one manically busy stage of life and my posts went down to one per week, if that. That is something that I find difficult, but I also sometimes struggle with what to post. I find that sometimes I'm posting things (usually reviews) just for the sake of posting, rather than that I enjoy it or think my readers would be interested in it. I really do struggle to judge what I think people want to see and that's quite challenging sometimes.
Where do you see your blog in one year?
Things could be very different in one year's time, however I hope that my blog has a strong direction and I've still managed to interest my readers enough to stick with me! I also hope that I can branch out from fashion and beauty slightly, I'm not sure what to yet though. Any ideas on a postcard, thanks!

What is the most discouraging thing that has happened to you?
I get discouraged when a post I've worked hard on, or I think looks good, doesn't get as many views or comments as a 'regular' post of mine. I know this is probably silly, but hopefully some people can relate!

What's your lasting inspiration/motivation?
I'm mainly inspired by my interest in online/digital media and marketing. Having a blog and following a variety of different styles of blogs, allows me to keep up with what's happening. I don't think you can have a career in an industry, unless you're involved in it in every way you possibly can. 

I hope you enjoyed reading this! How do you feel about my blog heading in a more personal direction? Feel free to answer these questions yourself and leave the link in a comment if you do! :) x

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Garnier Oil Free BB Cream

Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector Oil Free BB cream - currently on offer at Boots (£6.99) - usually £9.99

I've never really got on well with BB creams in the past. From the few I've tried, I've found that they give very poor coverage and leave a 'dewy' finish on the skin. This is something I really don't get on with - I am a full coverage, matte finish foundation girl and always have been. I completely agree that the 'dewy' finish looks amazing on some people, but it really doesn't suit my skin type at all.

The concept behind BB creams have always appealed to me though, a lighter version of a foundation that moisturises and minimises imperfections, what's not to like about that?! Since I'm going on holiday to Italy in August, I wanted to find something lighter than foundation that won't turn into a sweaty gloopy mess in the heat. I called out to the beauty bloggers on Twitter and had a surprising number of recommendations for this Garnier BB cream!

This is actually my dream BB cream - it's a matte finish, the perfect shade, completely lightweight and so easy to blend. I apply this as I do with my foundation, dotting around my face and then blending using the Real Techniques stippling brush. The consistency of this product is quite thin, which took some getting used to as my go-to Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation is relatively thick, but it's not really a downside.

At a third of the price of my normal foundation, this is a great alternative for those days when you're only popping to the shop and don't need a full face of makeup and we'll see how it stands up on my summer holiday!

What do you feel about BB creams? Have you tried the Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB cream?

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Monday, 17 June 2013

Festival hair #2

A while ago I posted Festival hair #1 - my personal favourite way to style my hair for festivals. This is a slight variation on that post, I've pretty much just changed the accessory ha.

I feel wavy or curly hair is the best way to go with hair at festivals, you're not going to have access to any straightners or showers so beginning the weekend with your hair in a slightly styled curly/wavy state already is a good start. You can always make the most of salt sprays through out the weekend to add more texture and bobbles and grips to tuck away any crazy stray bits!

How would you style your hair for a festival weekend? x

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Graduation dresses: what to wear?!

Graduation dresses fashion style
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4 // 5 // 6
7 // 8 // 9

It's crazy to think that I finished University over a year ago now. The whole 3 years at Uni absolutely flew by, let alone the time I've been working since finishing!

I know lots of people are starting to think about graduation and what to wear, so I thought I'd share some styles that were popular with my class, in case anyone is wondering what type of dress to go for, or how smart you should be. My uni was weird and only held graduation in November, despite my course finishing uni in early May, so last year I featured another graduation wishlist here.

With graduation, you need to consider how your dress is going to look with your gown - find out what colour your gown will be in advance and make sure there's no clashing colours there! Graduation is a relatively smart occasion, but you can get away with wearing the slightly more casual skater style dresses. However, I would recommend going with a skater style made from a slightly heavier material, or with added embellishment or detailing to make it stand out for the occasion. 

Dresses similar to the skater style dresses above were popular at my graduation in November, as were the V-neck, wrap style dresses like number 7. However, this year I feel that midi-dresses like number 8 will be popular at graduations, the shape of the dress will work really well with the gown and they always look effortlessly glamorous and smart!

Have you got a graduation coming up? What will you be wearing? x

Ps. a couple of the dresses above are from Boohoo - they currently have free UK delivery on orders over £35 with the code FREE35 :) 

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Cinnamon Oat Pancakes

I wanted to include a 'naked' pancake picture to prove I didn't burn them (I definitely burnt the first batch I made) ha!

I have never made or eaten American style pancakes before, I'm more of a tradition lemon and sugar thin pancake kinda girl, so this was something new to me. Since I've become addicted to Pinterest, I'm constantly seeing amazing food images including some amazing looking pancakes so I thought I'd give it a try!

This recipe makes about 10 pancakes and I topped them with low fat natural yoghurt, some defrosted frozen summer fruits and a drizzle of honey.

(Sorry it's in cups, the battery has gone on my scales, but approx conversions are below too)
1 cup plain flour (128g)
2 tbsp caster sugar (25g)
2 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup rolled oats (85g)
1 cup milk (140ml)
1 egg

Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and oats) in a bowl, then combine the wet ingredients (milk and egg) in a separate bowl or jug. Slowly add the milk and egg mixture into the dry ingredients, mixing with a whisk.

Add a tiny amount of oil to a frying pan (I used a few sprays of fry-light), then drop a large tablespoon of the batter into the pan. You should be able to fit around 4 pancakes in one pan. Fry on a medium - high heat for 2/3 minutes, on one side. You should be able to see small bubbles form and burst on the top of the batter, once you can see this happening after about 2 minutes they're ready to turn. Then fry for a further 2 mins on the other side.

These tasted amazing with the yoghurt, fruit and honey but it would also be amazing with banana and honey too - yum! They took a little while to prepare and make, so not really appropriate for early morning work breakfasts, but they're the perfect weekend breakfast! :)

Let me know if you try this recipe! Do you prefer American style or English pancakes?
Also, if you have Pinterest, leave your link in a comment and I'll follow :) I need more people to follow! x

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Bourjois cream blush - Nude Velvet

You've probably seen a lot of these posts around recently, as they seem to be the 'big' thing in the beauty blogging world at the moment. This is quite rightly so though, as these really are little magic pots of cream blush! 

I opted to buy the lightest shade in the collection, Nude Velvet. The other shades include 'Healthy Glow' - another coral based blush, 'Rose Tender' - a rose pink blush and 'Sweet Cherry' a slightly darker rose pink shade. 

Nude Velvet is a really subtle shade, perfect for daytime wear. It has coral/orange tones and is great for paler skin like mine. This is actually my first ever cream blush, I tend to usually choose powder blushers as I like my makeup finish to be matte. I always thought that cream blushes would give that 'dewy' skin look and not be matte, which looks great on other people but it's just not the finish for me. However, I'd heard that these blushes transformed from a cream to a powder on the skin, and they were right - they definitely leave a matte finish on the skin! 

I applied this blush using a stippling brush which really evenly distributed the colour across my cheeks. I also tested using my fingers, to see whether this would be better, it worked well but I preferred the finish of the stippling brush the most. It was really easy to build colour, which is what you need with a subtle shade like this and the blush lasted all day. I went out shopping and for lunch, then came home late afternoon and the blush look just the same as when I applied! It has definite staying power.   

Have you tried any of the Bourjois cream blushes? Which shade did you choose and what did you think? x

Monday, 10 June 2013

Dream festival style

I know I'm on a massive festival blogging spree at the moment, but it's currently sunny while I'm writing this and I have lots of exciting festivals coming up so it's all I'm thinking about at the moment! I previously blogged about my festival hairstyle #1, and #2 will be coming up in the near future too, so I thought I'd post an outfit to match.

I absolutely love this kimono from Boohoo, it's only £15 which I think is an absolute bargain! Kimonos are so in fashion at the moment, but I don't feel like they're that wearable with the English weather, so it might be worth picking up a cheaper one in case I don't wear it much. Pairing this kimono with denim shorts and a plain black top is one of my favourite festivals looks. Adding a vintage inspired leather rucksack, a straw hat and some big sunglasses would finish the outfit off nicely.

UK festivals aren't always sunshine and warm weather, they're more often than not overcast and rainy (anyone who experienced creamfields last year will know what I mean). So baring this in mind, I will also be featuring a more practical festival outfit very soon, with more layers and probably some wellies too.

What have you previously worn to festivals? Or what's your your favourite 'festival fashion' piece? x  

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Festival hair #1

I'm on a bit of a festival theme at the moment - apologies if you don't like this topic, but it's on my mind as I recently attended the first festival of this season yay!

Festivals can be a pretty tricky place to have nice hair, especially towards the end when you've slept in a tent for 2 nights without access to a shower or straighteners! I'm quite lucky that my hair doesn't really get greasy quickly, but I'm still never without a large can of Batiste at a festival.

My hair is naturally curly, so for festivals I tend to wash it before I go and leave it to dry naturally with some curl cream or salt spray. I take the salt spray product along with me and in the mornings refresh my curls with a bit of water and some more spray to give them some more bounce. Batiste is also essential for roots, along with grips for any stray fringes and, of course, some floral accessories to get in the festival mood!

What are your essential festival hair products? x

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Update how you wear blouses

When I think of blouses, I often think of boring office wear, but this doesn’t always have to be the case! Below are some tips to make blouses that little bit more interesting and up to date.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4
*Sponsored post

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

A peek into my life - festivals

I love fashion and beauty, but I also absolutely love camping for a weekend and standing in muddy fields so I'm able to see a band I love, or even a band I've never heard of. Sometimes I feel this blog is too focused on one area of my life, so I'm trying to incorporate other elements too.

As it's now June and technically summer is here, I thought I'd start with my favourite summer pastime - festivals. Josh and I have a frame full of our wristbands at home, a combination of festivals we've been to alone and ones we've been to together. Some of them are really tatty and gross, so it's not the most beautiful of frames but it holds so many memories for us.

We might need to get another frame this year, or do some rearranging, to fit this years wristbands in too. With Josh's business we're lucky enough to get access to loads of festivals through Headphone Disco, which often means AAA/backstage/crew passes too which is always exciting.

So far, the festival line up for this summer includes:
Wychwood (last weekend)

Are you going to any of the festivals above this summer, or any others? Which festivals should I check out? x

Have you entered my giveaway to win a one-of-a-kind Warehouse denim jacket yet?

Monday, 3 June 2013

Cinnamon rolls

Last week I posted about a tomato and pepper puff pastry tart, which seemed to go down quite well. So I thought I'd just let you know a quick trick to make a tasty pudding and use up any left over puff pastry from the recipe! These are really simple cinnamon rolls which are so nice eaten straight from the oven, while they're still warm.

To make these just roll your puff pastry out onto a chopping board. Melt some butter in a bowl and mix with cinnamon, sugar and raisins. I completely guessed the quantities, so just make this mixture up to your taste! Brush/pour the mixture all over one side of your pastry, then roll it up into a sausage shape. Cut the sausage shape up, into 2 - 3cm slices, then lay on their side on a baking tray.

I baked these for about 15 - 20 mins, until they're golden brown and there's no soggy pastry. I then served them up with Carte D'or's salted caramel icecream (which is AMAZING!). It's a really quick, tasty pudding to make for when that sweet tooth crops up! Yum!

Have you entered my giveaway to win a one-of-a-kind Warehouse denim jacket yet?

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Giveaway - Warehouse denim jacket!

Just a reminder that my Warehouse denim jacket giveaway is still going on! You could win this one-of-a-kind denim jacket from Warehouse, size 12, open to UK readers only. You can see more details on the original jacket (without the customisation) here.

The rules are simple, you just need to be a follower of my blog and then let me know through the Rafflecopter app below! Good luck! :)

Terms and Conditions -
The winner's name and address will be passed to Warehouse, who will be dispatching the prize.
The giveaway is open to UK residents only.
Warehouse will be responsible for the shipping of the prize, I cannot be held responsible for loss or damage in the post.

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