Beauty / Lifestyle / Interiors

Friday, 29 April 2016

A Spring Beauty Wishlist

After a recent (huge) de-clutter of my make up I found myself left with a few empty spaces and spots to fill in my muji and Alex drawers. Now that I've streamlined and my stash, it's so easy to see what's missing from my collection - I own an insane amount of neutral eyeshadows but not many powders or foundations, I also have about 7 different highlighters on the go! 

Now that I own a lot less make up I feel a little better about treating myself to a few new bits. I haven't splurged on make up in the longest time and so I currently have a beauty wishlist packed full of dreamy, shimmery products, heavenly fragrances, dewy bases and perky spring hues! Here are a few of my picks:


What's on your beauty wishlist?

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Sunday, 24 April 2016

Dressing Table Details

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After a huge make up clear out, I wanted to revamp and switch up my dressing table a little. I've had the same Ikea mirror for the longest time and so wanted something a little different. After flitting between a few shapes and styles I settled on this gorgeous Large Gold Hexagon Mirror from Oliver Bonas. It's beautiful, a great size and is a step closer towards my Pinterest-esque dressing table dreams.

Next to my new mirror I've popped a few of my favourite brushes in a Muji acrylic pot. On the right are my MAC brushes, then my bdellium purple bambu brushes* and finally the dreamy Zoeva Rose Gold brushes. I'm still on the look out for a pot to place my everyday brushes and Real Techniques brushes in, possibly something from H&M home like this gold pot.

As summer is fast approaching I've pulled out a few perky corals and pinks to freshen up my make up. The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blusher in Diffused Heat is a heavenly pick, a divine coral with swirls of radiance boosting ambient lighting powder, ideal for a dewy glow. Another top pick is the Charlotte Tilbury Kissing Lipstick in Coachella Coral which is creamy, long lasting and a gorgeous hue.

I've also pulled out a few of my favourite Essie shades for spring - Essie Cabana Boy, a soft pearl with a hint of lilac, the dreamy Essie Ladylike - a creamy muted mauve that creates the perfect polished mani and Essie Vanity Fairest, a shimmery nude pink.

Lastly, I've re-shuffled my muji drawers a little, pulling forward long lasting liquid lipsticks, creamy blushers and dewy highlighters for the warmer months.

What do you think of my new dressing table set up?
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Friday, 22 April 2016

Cutting Down On Sugar

croissants
After indulging in far too many chocolate treats and easter eggs during March I made a decision to try and cut down on my sugar intake throughout April. It's quite a challenge to cut out sugar altogether as there are so many different kinds of sugars to consider! I decided to start off with a simple solution, banning chocolate (expect dark), sweets, ice cream, sugary cereals, spreads and to check ingredients for unnecessarily high levels of sugar. Here's 10 things I've learnt from my sugar free month:

1. Sugar is everywhere, hidden in everyday items like juice, peanut butter, sauces even some soups and bread! Simply switching brands or making your own versions can be a good fix. I made the switch to Meridian Peanut butter which is 100% blended nuts and still as delicious. Soups are so easy to whip up and then freeze in individual portions, sauces with tahini, lime, garlic and ginger are divine and so easy to make from scratch too - great to accompany noodles, rice or stir fried veggies! 

2. Finding breakfast meals that are low on sugar is hard. Breakfast foods are my weakness. French toast, croissants, sugary cereals and pancakes my downfall and I'm not really one for savory breakfasts like eggs, potatoes and avocado (although I'd eat them for lunch any day!). I found it quite hard to avoid sugar in the AM and so I stuck to a fail safe meal of hearty Porridge made with oat milk. Add a sprinkle of cinnamon, fresh raspberries and maybe a dollop of almond butter for flavour, it's delicious! 

3. A square of dark chocolate can help to keep chocolate cravings at bay. Lindt Excellence dark mint intense is my flavour of choice, it's delish!

4. I feel better. In general, happier and my skin looks so much better.

5. But, I'm pretty low on energy, I need to keep snacking on nuts and fruit to keep my energy levels up.

6. My Spiralizer and NutriBullet have been my best friends. Spiralized courgetti, ribboned carrots or potato curls, blended nut butters, smoothies or hummus - the options are endless. They're ideal to help to change things up a little and keep things interesting.

7. If you do cave, dont give up. Don't let that krispy kreme/cadburys/ice cream moment of weakness be your downfall. Don't feel too guilty, pick yourself back up again and carry on!

8. Almond butter spread on a rice cake is my favourite mid-morning snack. Ever.

9. Cook books like Deliciously Ella's are great to flick through for meal inspiration.

10. When you want to use/reintroduce sugar, find healthier alternatives like coconut sugar, maple syrup or honey.

In the end, aim for a healthy balance, my aim was to find better alternatives and new staple meals. Realistically I'm never going to be able to give up chocolate or pancakes but if 80% of the time I'm eating well and making better, healthier choices, then I think that's ok.
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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

A Pampering Lush Haul

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Throughout winter I normally take a lot of time to pamper and care for my skin but it's something I often overlook during the warmer months and my skin tends to suffer for it. This year, I'm determined to up my pampering routine and so I took to Lush to invest in an array of heavenly products to treat and pamper myself this spring/summer.

The first thing I picked up was The Comforter Bubble Bar, I've had my eye on this gorgeous bubble bar for the longest time, it smells heavenly! This comforting and uplifting blackcurrant scented bubble bar is the perfect pampering treat, it creates a dreamy pink bath with soft clouds of bubbles to melt into. Also the bar is huge, smashed into chunks I expect this will last me a while!

After months of trying to use up a huge bottle of shampoo that did nothing good for my hair or scalp, I thought I would give my tired tresses a pamper and give a Lush Shampoo bar a whirl. There's an array of different shampoo bars to choose from for all different hair types, in the end I opted for Jason and the Argan Oil, a Rose Jam scented, shine enhancing, balancing bar. I love the concept behind these handy bars, they're environmentally friendly (no packaging!) long lasting and create a lather of foam and bubbles that you wash with, much more gentle than applying the product directly to your scalp. With argan oil, lemon oil and balancing, restorative rose absolute I have high hopes for this gorgeous shampoo bar, hopefully it will leave me with shiny, soft hair!

I also invested in a round tin to hold and make my bar last even longer, once it's dried you simply pop your bar in the tin to keep it in top condition. Plus, it will hopefully look neat and tidy in my bathroom!

Lastly, the Lemony Flutter Cuticle butter is an incredible all over pampering treat, not only for cuticles, it's ideal for any dry patches, elbows, knees and hands! This dreamy pastel yellow thick buttery cream is full of shea butter, mango butter, coconut oil, beeswax, lanolin, avocado oil - SO many nourishing, moisturising ingredients. It also smells like lemon meringue pie - divine!

Have you picked up anything from Lush lately?
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Sunday, 17 April 2016

A Few Luxe Favourites

luxe products
I actually have Fleur to thank for this posts inspiration, when I saw Fleur's instagram call to post a photo of a few favourite luxe products (for a chance to be featured in her new book) I hopped out of my seat and started gathering my picks to take a snap. I absolutely love Fleur's first book and couldn't be more excited to purchase her second one too!

I've noticed that there's a running rose gold theme among my top luxe picks, it's such a dreamy shade. I absolutely love all of these products, they're a real treat to own and use. These are a few of my favourite products ever, my fail safe, mood boosting picks that feel oh so special to use.

For accessories, I'm smitten with my Daniel Wellington Classic Sheffield Watch*. The timeless, classic style of the eggshell white dial, rose gold detailing and plain black strap means that this exquisite watch works with any outfit.
Another accessory love is my Monica Vinader Rose Gold Riva Ring. This gorgeous, dainty rose gold ring has scattered pave diamonds along a hoop detail, it's so flattering and such a pretty piece.
These delicate rose gold bobby pins from COS are one of my top accessory picks too!

The Layla Rose Gold headphones are another luxe favourite. They're a welcome treat to pop on when Alex is busy watching the F1, I can catch up on youtube, listen to a bit of Bieber whilst I'm working out or rainymood.com when I'm working!

For home decor, this beautiful gold West Elm Love Sign is a welcome addition to my home, it looks SO pretty on my shelves. Diptyque candles are another favourite pick, everything from the gorgeous packaging to the delightful scents feels so indulgent and luxurious 

Moving onto beauty, the Nars Outer limits eyeshadow is heavenly, a sparkly, iridescent rose gold eyeshadow with flecks of pink and gold glitter running over a peach toned base. Washed over or patted onto the lids, this really brightens up the eyes, it's mesmerising but unfortunately a limited edition, luckily Topshop Shuffle the Cards is an exact dupe!

Another dreamy pick are the Zoeva Rose Gold brushes, everything from the blush pink and rose gold hue to the soft bristles is divine. They blend make up seamlessly, pick up just the right amount of product and look delightful on my dressing table.

For nails, Essie Summit of Style is perfect for beautiful gilded tips. The chunky coppery bronze glitter is ideal for a luxe mani and works so well paired with berries, as an accent nail or built up for a glittery effect. Saved for special occasions, as a treat or for the festive period, Essie glitters are such a luxe treat to own!

My last beauty pick is the Charlotte Tilbury Kissing Lipstick in Coachella Coral, a fresh, perky coral pink that's ideal for spring. It has a creamy formula, divine hue and the packaging is unreal!

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What are your favourite luxe products?
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Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Streamlining My Beauty Stash

I've been trying to take a more minimalistic and clutter free approach to my belongings this year. Although I still have some way to go before I'll be completely happy with everything, it already feels so nice to be surrounded by just the things that I love and that I will use often.
I recently started the huge task of tackling my make up stash, from my everyday items to my professional make up kit, I have quite a stash to sort through. I've discovered and picked up a few tips along the way and so I thought I would note them down to help if you're planning to organise and streamline your beauty stash too!

Save the products you love
My fail safe method is to pull out the things that you love and can't bear to part with, then sort through the rest. This includes everything from your everyday base to favourite pink lipstick (mine's the dreamy Nars Yu) this way, you have the essentials and your most adored products saved - so you can be ruthless with the rest!

Sort through the rest 
Swatch, check sell by dates and sort through everything else. You have to be pretty ruthless - anything that's unworn in the past year or so, I try to let go. Anything you're unsure of, pop it in your everyday make up drawer or make up bag and wear it once more to see whether it's worth holding on to.

I find that at this stage it's worth noting down any favourites that you're running low on, that have expired (or in my case that are totally empty, I'm such a packaging hoarder!) or that you don't need to repurchase quite just yet, like seasonal moisturisers. This way you have a list close to hand for future reference so that you can stock back up on your favourites!

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Storage
Once you've streamlined your stash, it's time to tidy everything away. I really recommend the Muji acrylic drawers, they're SO useful, easy to stack up, wipe clean and having everything on show makes it easy to grab, re-shuffle and get the best use from your make up. I also love using cleaned out candle pots and pretty boxes to hold my make up and brushes in. Ikea and H&M home offer some great storage solutions too!

Throw out/Give away asap
Anything that is old or past it's sell by date, throw it out/recycle it straight away. Package up and send off anything else to give away (Give and Makeup is a great place to send your unwanted make up to). This way you won't be tempted to change your mind and pull something back out again that you don't need! 
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Sunday, 10 April 2016

A Bathroom Revamp


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My bathroom finally seems to be coming together, I've had a huge overhaul, de-cluttered my bath products and invested in a few new storage holders. Filled with fluffy towels, gold accents and Lush products galore, it's starting to feel like a relaxing, pampering space!

The ladder shelves were a great eBay find from the Sue Ryder eBay store. They're brand new, were so easy to assemble and all proceeds go to charity! They're the perfect size for my little bathroom!
On the top shelf I've popped a dreamy Diptyque candle and I'm toying between placing my face cloths and beloved Oskia Cleanser or a potted plant into the gold leaf pot for a pop of greenery. For now I've placed in a plant to brighten up the space, I love the look of String of Peals hanging plants and so I may swap it out for my Cleanser until I can get my hands on one!

The next two shelves hold these gorgeous gold wire baskets which are so ideal for storing Lush products or spare towels in. The top basket currently holds my bath bombs, the Salted Coconut Hand Scrub (perfect for pampering dry mitts) and Alex's Kalamazoo beard and facial wash which he absolutely loves!
The lower basket is a great size for storing my lush shower gels in, as you can see I'm pretty smitten with them. The Rose Jam shower gel is one my favourites, it smells divine, such a shame it's limited edition! Lush's The Comforter shower gel is another top pick, the comforting blackcurrant fragrance is heavenly. I really must pick up the bubble bar version to try!

Lastly, I always have a bottle of the Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo close to hand, it's been a favourite of mine for years now. It's a gorgeous clarifying shampoo that removes product build up, hard water minerals and pollutants. Paired with a good conditioner it's leaves my hair feeling incredible, so swishy, soft and bouncy!
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Friday, 8 April 2016

Kitchen Planning

Now that I've finished the bathroom (I'll pop up a little post this Sunday!) I've moved onto planning my dream kitchen. Whilst there's not much I can do about the dreary beige speckled countertops (forever dreaming of marble surfaces) I've been adding decor, cutlery and serving ware to my wishlist in the hopes that when we own our own home one day it will all fit together nicely!

Starting with a huge clear out of my kitchen, I'm planning on following the Kondo method - keeping only the things that I love and things that are useful. It's so great to pull absolutely everything out to sort through and clean, check sell by dates and organise before wiping down all my cupboards and surfaces and tidying them away! 

My colour scheme plans for the kitchen are white, wood, gold, marble and grey. I'm aiming for a crisp, clean space with gold detailing, marble surfaces and a pop of greenery from fresh herbs and plants. 
I would love my kitchen to be somewhere that inspires me to be healthy, cook from scratch and eat well. I've plans to store my Spirazlier and Nutribullet close to hand, also having a stack of healthy cookbooks like Deliciously Ella's close by for inspiration will help me to whip up some fresh, healthy meals!

H&M home is my go to place for kitchen accessories, actually most home decor! I just love this gold leaf shaped trivet, I also love the look of their cushions, they look perfect to brighten and make the space a little more cosy. This mint one looks ideal to pop on my kitchen chairs!

For the gold/metallic details, I've already invested in this beautiful gold cutlery set, I also have my eye on this dreamy gold flatware serving set, I'm keeping an eye out for a similar set with a lower price tag - this hammered copper set from Oliver Bonas is pretty dreamy! 
A marble or wood serving tray is also on the top of my wishlist, I love the look of this one from next, it looks ideal for serving up platters of fruit, bread or cheese on.

Lastly, a mint KitchenAid would be the dream, they're divine - the ultimate kitchen accessory! I'm hoping that one day I'll be able to justify buying one!

Kitchen Wishing

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Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Spring Lipsticks

As much as I love to wear berries, plums and reds there's something so satisfying about pulling out all of the pretty pinks, perky corals and soft nudes ready for the warmer months. I've pulled together a list of my favourite picks for spring, not only to they perk up my make up but they make my dressing table look fresh, airy and bright too - perfect for spring!

The Korres Lip Butter in Pomegranate is perfect for the ever changing weather. This heavenly, buttery soft balm melts onto the lips, leaving them nourished and tinted a glossy pink. Packed with vitamins, antioxidants and shea butter, this gorgeous balm has become a staple for me for soft supple lips.

For a bold spring pink, Nars Yu is the one. I just can't get over the formula of Nars lip pencils, they're simply divine - creamy, pigmented and so long lasting. Just one swipe of this shocking pink instantly freshens up my make up, it's ideal for April's rainy days!


The limited edition Nars Iberico (Nars Timanfaya is a great dupe!) is another beautiful pick, this bright orange red packs a punch, it's budge proof and looks gorgeous paired with a gold highlighter like Topshop Sunbeam!

Next up is the latest addition to my lipstick stash the Charlotte Tilbury Kissing Lipstick in Coachella Coral, a wearable coral pink that looks oh so dreamy on the lips. This is the perfect perky coral shade to pair with floaty spring dresses and dewy skin. The creamy formula, divine hue and pretty packaging make this luxe lipstick such a treat to own! 

Lastly, for an every day shade, I've pulled out Clinique Nude Pop, a pretty soft nude. Inbuilt with a primer, this long lasting lipstick pairs well with winged liner or a smokey eye for a sophisticated, chic look.

What are your lip picks for Spring?

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Sunday, 3 April 2016

March Monochrome Favourites

Starting with a lifestyle favourite, this Spiralizer has been in constant use in my kitchen this month. It's really helped to up the amount of vegetables I eat, I just love making courgetti, butternut squash noodles and sweet potato curly chips, which are incredible especially when dunked in guacamole!

Another favourite during March was Parks and Recreation, we worked our way through all seven seasons in record time - Leslie Knope is literally my hero! I ordered Yes Please as soon as it finished, it's witty, down to earth and an enjoyable read - I'm loving it so far! I'm also eyeing up this Treat Yo Self Print, I'm missing the series already - is it too soon to watch it from the beginning again?!

I've been adding a few new home touches for spring this month, this little ring holder from Muji is ideal for storing my rings, it's minimalistic and so cute. I also pulled Dipyque Baies out to burn, with March's stormy days having candles flickering and the divine, comforting scent of blackcurrant and rose helped to make my home feel cosy and warm.

Lush's Salted Coconut Hand Scrub has been a staple this month. You only need to massage a small amount of this heavenly scrub onto hands to cleanse, hydrate and gently exfoliate. The pampering combination of sea salt, argan oil, lemon and coconut oil leaves hands silky soft, it's a must have if you suffer from parched mitts!

For nails, I've fallen completely in love with Essie's Cabana Boy, everything from the gold stars on the lid to the pearly white hue with a hint of lilac is so dreamy. Paired with delicate gold rings and floaty dresses, it's ideal for spring!

Lastly, the H&M Pure Radiance Powder Blusher in Golden Peach has been my top pick for radiant, flushed cheeks. Just a swipe of this shimmery blush perks up the skin, bringing warmth, radiance and light to the complexion.

What were your favourite products in March?
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Friday, 1 April 2016

An April To Do List


1. Don't get sucked into the many April fool's floating round, they always get me - I'm still half convinced that Pineberries are a thing!

2. Make a most of April showers/rainy days before the hot, dry months ahead.

3. Pick up this cute cactus tee, paired with leggings it looks idea for lazy days at home!

4. This cactus jewellery holder is pretty adorable too!

5. Find a new fresh, floral scent for spring. With notes of peony, jasmine and rose Jo Malone Peony and Blush Suede sounds perfect!

6. Eat a little better. After indulging in a few too many Easter eggs last month, I'm hoping to cut down on my sugar intake during April.

7. Splurge on a hexagon mirror for my dressing table, I love this gold one.

8. Restock my Lush stash. Now that I'm finally getting to the end of my Christmas supply I'm ready to stock back up on a few new bits, The Comforter, another Golden Egg and the Oatfix Face Mask are on my to buy list this month!

9. Plant a windowsill herb garden.

10. Pick up a new Nars blush, Luster looks like such a dreamy shade - a gorgeous apricot with golden shimmer running through it - ideal for spring!

What's on your to do list for April?
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