Saturday 30 November 2013

November in Pictures

trout pout / epic hot chocolate / queens of the stone age / carnaby christmas lights / primark christmas shoot / the best early birthday present / my new mac love / emotional cinema times / children in need benestyle

It really has been one amazing month (albeit prematurely festive!)- from taking part in a Primark bloggers shoot to watching an amazing QOTSA gig at Wembley to successes at work, November has been full of epic experiences. Luckily December looks set to continue in the same way as I'm currently spending a weekend back in my beloved Sheffield with all my uni besties to watch our old society's show and head out for an old school Pop Tarts night! This is being followed by working an amazing Benefit event at Oxford Street on Monday, my 22nd birthday, four year anniversary, Birmingham Clothes Show business trip and big visit from my parents! Phew. So mixed in with the countdown for Christmas which I will be following with my amazing early Benebabe birthday present (the one and only cult Ciate advent calendar!!!), this month looks set to be another cracker.

What are your November highlights?   
Thursday 28 November 2013

The November Wishlist: Birthday & Christmas Edition

1. Lush 'Stardust' / Judging by the amount of bathing product/candle hauls I've been watching this week I'm not the only girl craving a festive bath in these dark wintry evenings and Lush have really outdone themselves this year! Their Christmas collection is full of gorgeous bath bombs, melts and massage bars which all smell and look incredible so I'd be over the moon to get the 'Stardust' gift set this December which contains the girliest pinkest festive treats including the infamous snow fairy shower gel!  

2. REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask / I really don't know why but my skin has been having a proper tantrum lately. I've tried all sorts to calm it down- clay masks, spot treatments, detox tea- but I think it needs something a bit more and I'm convinced that something is the REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask. At a pricey £30 it's not something I can afford to buy myself,  but I just can't ignore it's promises of radiance and spot/pore prevention so fingers crossed Santa might carry it down the chimney (Please?). 

3.  MAC custom palette / After two years of wearing the Naked 2 palette to death I think it's time to move on. I've looked at Stila and Clarins offerings and as much as I still want them I'd really love to start collecting my own custom MAC eyeshadow set with a quad for travel and a 15 pot to keep at home. This way I won't end up with another Naked dupe and I've already made a wishlist of satin taupe, naked lunch, cranberry, sketch, all that glitters, woodwinked, charcoal brown, carbon and sumptuous olive. And MAC 217 brush... 

4.  Yankee Candle in 'Snowflake Cookie' / I can't seem to get through the day without burning at least one candle right now and after tearing myself away from the likes of Diptique, Neom and Jo Malone due to their hefty price tags I've set my sights on owning more of the original, best and reasonable candle brand- Yankee candles. I'm loving my 'Christmas Cookie' Yankee at the moment as it looks pretty and smells delicious so I can't wait to add another cookie offering of the snowflake variety to my bedside table.

5. Essie Festive Fingertips / Barry M, Models Own and Essie are without a doubt my top three polish brands but I hardly own any Essie shades because I find it hard to justify the £8 price tag. This is why I'm desperate to expand my Essie collection with something like this gorgeous festive fingertips set which is really good value, not to mention dead drop gorgeous. For around the £20 mark you get four full size polishes (Including Essie 'Sole Mate'!!) and nail stickers. There are also beautiful mini sets up for grabs. Swoon. 

6. Marc Jacobs Daisy / Another thing I'd love to expand next month is my fragrance collection which is actually rather abysmal right now- the serious downside to having Birthday and Christmas in one month is that all your perfume runs out in November... Anyway now I'm a working girl I want to wear more grown up scents so along with endless Jo Malone and Channel lusting, Marc Jacobs Daisy has been seriously catching my eye (and nose) as a classic girly yet grown up scent that would look ever so lovely on my dressing table! 

What's on your wishlist this gift giving season?
Monday 25 November 2013

Big Collective Haul!

I've got another collective haul for you today lovelies- some of it you will have seen in previous posts but there are also some new gems like the amazing Gimmie Brow from Benefit (Not out in the UK till next year I'm afraid folks!), pretty frame and candle from Next and super cool Timeless t-shirt. Oh and I can't forget those fox mittens from Primark, they're literally making me so happy in the cold weather right now! If you want to hear more about all of these lovely things then please do watch my haul video and subscribe to my channel if you like it, but for now I need to go and work on my bod at the gym because it needs a serious detox before my big birthday retox next week...

Let me know what you've been buying lately and have a lovely night!  
Sunday 24 November 2013

The Tartan Dress

Primark Dress / M&S Tights / Topshop Socks / New Look Boots / Pandora Bracelet

Unless you've been hiding under some kind of fashionless rock for the past few months (and I really hope you haven't!) then you'll be aware that the biggest trend for aw13 is definitely tartan- this Scottish print is everywhere and can be found on everything from scarves to socks to full on outfits. While I've always loved tartan and have been sporting a tartan scarf since I was bought one for Christmas last year, I've only just made the jump from accessories to fully adorning myself in outfits of the checked print and this Primark dress has to be my favourite tartan thing ever. I refer to it as the tartan dress because it was worn on Primark's aw13 adverts and since then the whole country has gone crazy for it. I was lucky enough to pick it up on a naughty lunch time shopping trip in Chelmsford and it's just as perfect as I wanted it to be. A really flattering a line shape which clinches in at just the right place with an adorable preppy collar and cute puff ball sleeves- for only £15 I can't get enough of it! I'm wearing it here for the Next blogger workshop simply styled with dolly socks, cut out boots and braids. My dad said I looked like a 12 year old school girl but Vivianna Does Makeup and Lily Pebbles, who I was lucky enough to meet at the workshop, loved it so I think I'll take their comments on board. Sorry dad.

Talking of Primark I've had a really amazing week as I did a Christmas video shoot for Primark on Friday with two of my besties Nick and Faye. I'll be doing a whole post on this once the video is live but there are lots of fun snaps on my Instagram if you want to have a sneak peek. Other than that I've had a rather successful week at work and a rather lovely weekend with my boyfriend which included a Queens Of The Stone Age gig at Wembly on Friday. Ah life is pretty damn good right now!

Are you a fan of the tartan dress? 

Tuesday 19 November 2013

MAC Paint Pot | Let Me Pop

If you saw my latest haul post you'll be aware that my recent random obsessive hunt for the perfect copper cream eyeshadow resulted in me adding this little beauty to my basket- or in this case, black and white MAC bag. As a former student only just out of uni it feels very strange buying this sort of high end extravagant item, but now I'm working full time I figured I could let myself have one luxury item a month which should hopefully curb my urge to splurge. Well, we can hope can't we? But anyway back to this MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot in 'Let Me Pop'...first of all I am literally crazy about this colour! I got so stuck in a rut with my muted golds and browns (Any fellow 'On and On Bronze' obsessives out there?) that I was desperate to spice things up a bit and it seems popping this shimmery gold/pink toned pure copper all round the eye is just the way to do this. It's the perfect look for both day and night time and really brings out the blue in my eyes. As with most cream eye shadows application is a dream- I use my fingers or Real Techniques Base Shadow Brush on the lid and Real Techniques Accent Brush to take it under the waterline and the creamy formula blends like a babe then sets perfectly to last all day long without creasing. And I mean all day long! The only niggle I have is the pigmentation which is slightly on the weaker side meaning you have to build the colour up quite a bit if you want more than a sheer sweep or layer it with powder shadows. I could also do with a little less glitter running through the copper (Although saying that I'm now super prepared for party season!). Overall though I'm very happy with this month's high end purchase and at a rather reasonable £15 I think you'd actually struggle to find a drugstore dupe for much less money. The sleek glass pot packaging also reflects the price in the classiest way and as long as you keep the lid shut tight this should last a very long time. Needless to say I'm now eyeing up 'Painterly' along with a custom powder palette. Maybe it's true that once you go MAC you never go back...

Are you a MAC Paint Pot fan?
Sunday 17 November 2013

Autumn/Winter Polish Picks

As the seasons change, so do the shades that adorn our talons and as the world is basically already in full Christmas swing (I've just spent the weekend in London being surrounded by Christmas lights, gingerbread lattes and reindeer jumpers!) I thought it was definitely time for me to show you my autumn/winter polish picks for 2013...

Company 'Mint Green' / First up we have a bit of a surprising choice from me as I usually reserve mint green colours for spring, but this shade has a bit of a deeper Christmas tree vibe to it which I love. Plus it makes a nice change to all the dark colours I usually opt for this time of year. It also came free with this month's Company mag!
Models Own 'Snowflakes' / The most wintery pick of the polish bunch comes in the form of this gorgeous holographic glitter top coat which adds little shimmery snowflakes to your nails making it a super cute addition to any icy pastels. The formula is a little hard to work with but the snow flake effect is totally worth it!
Models Own 'Utopia' / All hail the perfect winter pastel- this lilac toned off white is like Essie 'Fiji' for the colder months and the formula is incredible as well- one quick drying coat and you're done! I can see why this is Lily Melrose's favourite polish ever and I'm getting a bit addicted to wearing this with 'snowflakes' layered over the top. 
Barry M Matte 'Crush'/ Going back to the dark side now with this stunning new release from Barry M. Not only is 'Crush' the perfect vampy berry shade but it also comes in the formula trend of this season- matte. As a glossy dewy kinda gal I'm surprised at how much I like this finish and I'm even exploring more matte products for my face now! Millie Mac will not be pleased...
No.7 'Beautifully Black' / This nail varnish has been a firm favourite of mine for two years now as I love a good grunge nail at this time of year. The best part about this polish is the glitter particles that run through it and glossy formula which both prevent you from looking like a teenage goth whilst wearing it. Always a plus.

What are your current polish picks? 
Wednesday 13 November 2013

The Bathroom Tour

Say hello to my very own new bathroom which I've become the proud owner of since moving to my new flat. It's weird how much I've enjoyed organising all my products and adding a few touches to make it pretty- it's like a nice little extension of my bedroom (excluding the excessive amount of water and toilet cleaner!) so tonight I thought I'd share it with you in both photo and video form and I'd love to know what you think of it/ what products you're loving at bath time right now? In other non-bathroom related news I've got an exciting couple of days coming up as I'm working a Grazia event at the Carnaby Boutique tomorrow and going to a gig with the boyf on Friday- I'm also currently rocking my bobble hat on the Primark homepage which is pretty surreal but super exciting! I hope you've all got nice plans coming up too :)

How do you beautify your bathroom? 
Monday 11 November 2013

BeneBlog Debut

Something strange happened today- I got an email from Benefit with my face on it. As I do work at Benefit HQ it might not seem that weird but still, it's not exactly something I imagined happening a few months ago! Anyway my 'email face' was promoting the first little blog post I've done for the Beneblog which is all about my perfect 'nice package' and today I just thought I'd share it with you as you might want to have a little read (Click the photo above if you do!). Don't forget to follow Benefit on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram too- they post a few times everyday and run lots of competitions which is always good when there's make up involved! It's just a little post from me tonight as I'm trying to fit in gym, blogging, recovering from my weekend in London, sorting my flat and planning my birthday celebrations all before Made in Chelsea...

Have a lovely night ladies!
Sunday 10 November 2013

Sunday Style Steal: Alexa Chung

Ark blouse / Miss Selfridge Skirt / Topshop Socks / New Look boots / Jasper Conran bag* / Mood Spike Necklace* / Mood Statement Rings* / Pandora Bracelet / MAC Odyssey

Alexa Chung has to be one of my ultimate style icons- from the choppy bob and chelsea boots to preppy prints and perfect pins she is a lady just asking to get girl crushed. So when Debenhams asked me to steal the style of my British fashion icon it didn't take me long to choose Miss Chung! I had to pick a few accessories from the bags and jewellery sections of  the Designers at Debenhams range so I could recreate her look and straight away I thought 'big brown handbag'. Alexa is rarely seen without her beloved tan Mulberry Alexa but as my budget didn't quite stretch to that I went for this gorgeous Jasper Conran creation which has barely left my arm since I pulled it hastily out of the dust bag (And as my Mum once said, all the best things in life come in dust bags). 100% real leather with gorgeous tan colour, chic design and practical pockets to boot, this is pretty much my ultimate handbag and it actually happens to be on offer at the moment- go go go! After having another lengthy little style stalk I noticed Alexa is also a big fan of statement jewellery so the other things I opted for were a spiked necklace and statement rings from a brand called Mood. The necklace has fast become one of my favourite things because it really channels the aw13 punk/grunge vibe and looks great layered over a high necked top. The rings are really cool as well because you can mix, match and stack them to create different looks. I decided to pair all these accessories with a classic preppy Alexa look of collared blouse, pleather skater and boots, which is an outfit combo I really love for both day and night even if it doesn't look quite as wonderful on me with my short little legs...

Whose style would you like to steal?
Saturday 9 November 2013

Saturday Brunch: The Refectory Kitchen

There's nothing I love more than a lazy Saturday morning mooching around town and brunching at a local cute cafe. But when you're not in London with a Breakfast Club around every corner it's hard to know where to go, so today I thought I'd give a little spotlight to an adorable place I found with my Mum in Canterbury last week- the Refectory Kitchen. Canterbury is one of my favourite places in Kent anyway as it's got loads of history and old quirky buildings so it's no wonder we found this little gem tucked away at 16 St Dunstan's Street. The d├ęcor is of the vintage shabby chic variety (which we all know most bloggers can't get enough of), the staff are really nice and the menu is amazing. I was going to go for pancakes or french toast with bacon and maple syrup, but I changed my mind last minute to the roasted beetroot and butternut squash salad as I'd been eating a lot of sweet stuff at work (Oh the food perils of multiple baby showers!). My Mum went for the grilled halloumi and roasted vegetable sandwich with some chips and both meals were delicious, not to mention incredibly purse friendly. My peach and green tea was also so good I've become obsessed with tracking it down in Chelmsford! We decided to have pudding a little later in the day but I need to go back soon just to try those incredible looking homemade counter cakes...I hope you've enjoyed today's different sort of post, I do like putting a bit of lifestyle into my blog as I can't get enough of it on blogs like Hello October. My lifestyle today is not quite as quaint however, as I'm off to a house party in London for my friend's birthday. Once I've bought some tequila and lemon that is...

Where do you like to go for brunch?
Tuesday 5 November 2013

Bonfires & Bobblehats.

Primark Tee / Primark Jeans / Primark Hoody / New Look Parka / Next Hat, Glove and Scarf Set* / Topshop Socks / Next Boots* / Kate Moss 107 Lipstick

Happy Bonfire/Firework Night everyone! I hope you're all getting ready for a nice night snuggled up in winter woollies watching fireworks and playing with sparklers! I already had my 5th of November celebration at the weekend when I went to a firework display in the countryside with my boyfriend. The fireworks were really pretty and the mulled wine wasn't bad either, but being a beauty and fashion blogger I was obviously most excited about dressing for the occasion...I can't tell you how happy I was to bring out my bobble hat and matching scarf and gloves as I got them last year but didn't get the chance to wear them that much. I really love them though as they're proper cosy chunky knits and the cream colour means they go with everything. I decided to pair these winter warmers with the casual combo of jeans, boyfriend tee and hoody which are all courtesy of Primark (I actually think I'm getting a bit addicted to that place.). The boyfriend tee is one of my favourite pieces of clothing at the moment because it's got a really classic Nordic print full of reindeer, making it unashamedly festive and I'm equally unashamed that I'm already wearing it with still two months to go until the big day! Then I just threw on my everyday staples of parka coat, pixie boots and Kate Moss vampy lipstick and I was ready to go. If you want to see a little snippet of my night then you can check out my Instavideo below. I'm loving Instagram so much right now so do pop over if you fancy getting daily doses of the Budget Boutique. And on that note have lovely wrapped up/firework filled nights ladies!

What do you have planned for tonight?
Monday 4 November 2013

Halloween Haulin'

It may not be the traditional Halloween activity, but this October I swapped the fake blood and cat ears for a girly spa and shopping break back at home with my mum and sister- hello sensible post student life! As I'd just had my first proper pay day I did treat myself to a few exciting beauty bits as well as some pretty things for my new flat which I thought I'd show you today (shoutout to Fred for making a cute furry background)...

MAC Paint Pot in 'Let Me Pop' / This cheeky high end purchase appeared in last month's wishlist so it's no wonder it's now appeared in my make up bag. It's every bit the perfect pinky copper long lasting cream shadow that I wanted and it does look so pretty all round the eyes so I can justify the £15 price tag. Yeahh I totally can...
L'Oreal Skin Perfection Micellar Water / After spending a great deal of time and money ordering copious amounts of Bioderma from Ebay I'm so happy I can now pick up this L'Oreal micellar water for under a fiver from Boots. And not only does it remove my make up really well, it purifys the skin too! 
Model's Own 'Utopia' & 'Snowflakes' / After using up nearly a whole bottle of Essie 'Fiji' over the Summer I was desperate to find a similar neutral pastel shade for the winter months and I think lilac based 'Utopia' is the answer. Mix this with 'Snowflakes' and you have the ultimate frosty Christmas nail combo. 
Barry M Matte Nail Paint in 'Crush' / I saw this on the Barry M Stand and figured it was about time I joined the matte nail hype. I'm usually all about the glossy talons but it is all about the matte this season and I really love the deep berry colour. Plus, for only £3.99 you can't go wrong! Bravo Barry M.
'Christmas Cookie' Yankee Candle / In the winter months I love spending my evenings snuggled up with a book and a candle and now it's November it has to be one with a festive scent. This Christmas Cookie Yankee candle was an obvious choice because it looks cute and smells good enough to eat #nomnomnom 
Fenwick 'just for you' Coaster / Another little new room purchase, this was only £1.39 from Fenwicks and I thought it'd be a super cute thing to put my morning cuppa on. All I need to do now is to convince someone to bring it to me...

Did you do any Halloween Haulin'?
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