Saturday, 24 December 2016

The Best Christmas Traditions

The Best Christmas Traditions
I can't believe it's Christmas Eve! I still don't feel particularly Christmassy so to get me more into the spirit, I thought I'd share with you three of my favourite Christmas traditions mostly from my Childhood.

1. Christmas Eve Parties

When I was younger and way before then, my great grandparents would throw a huge Christmas Eve party. All of my aunties, uncles and cousins would pack into their house to eat, drink and be merry. We'd sing Christmas carols at the top of our lungs in the front garden waiting for Santa - usually an older uncle - to appear in the living room come grotto and give us one present. It was magical.

2. Christmas Stocking

Up until I moved out of my parents house, my mum would still sneak into my room in the middle of the night and put a stocking on the end of my bed. It contained one or two small presents, a tube of sweets, an apple, orange and some £1 coins. When I'd wake up on Christmas morning, I'd move my feet under the duvet to feel for the stocking to know if he had been. This worked right up until I was about 17. My parents had been out on Christmas eve and forgot to put the presents under the tree never mind my stocking.

3. Boxing Day

Without a doubt Boxing Day is my favourite - I actually like it more than Christmas day. Since my Dad was younger, his family gathered at my Grandma and Grandads for Boxing Day. It became more and more of an occasion as my dad and his siblings grew up and had children of their own so much so that it was like a second Christmas when I was younger. My grandparents would put on a huge spread and we would all spend the day playing games and catching up as we don't see each other all year.

Do you have any Christmas traditions with your family or ones you like to do with your children? I'd love to hear them. Have a wonderful Christmas! X
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Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Favourites Playlist - December

How on actual earth is it almost Christmas? I cannot believe it. This year has gone so quick and since the big 2 0 1 7 is right around the corner, I thought i'd reflect on some of the live music I've enjoyed this year.

I went to Park Life and saw the likes of Bastille, Chemical Brothers, Sigma and Ice Cube. Then there was Slam Dunk where I couldn't help but dance to Panic At The Disco, Yellow Card and Mayday Parade. Last but not least there was Leeds Festival where amazingly I saw the likes of Two Door Cinema Club, Imagine Dragons and Red Hot Chili Peppers. I also managed to catch Mayday Parade, Mallory Knox, Enter Shikari and RHCP at solo gigs across the North West and enjoyed every second.

It's been a great year for live music and me and I can't wait to kick of 2017 with Deaf Havana in February.

This post will be my final favourites of 2016 but I can't wait to see what comes out next year!

TRACKS

It's All Coming Back To Me Now - Marion Raven and Meat Loaf
Lucky Me - Mallory Knox
St Pauls - Deaf Havana
Right On Time - Red Hot Chili Peppers
By Your Side - Jonas Blue Ft. Raye
The Mack - Nevada Ft. Mark Morrison and Fetty Wap
No Sleep - Twin Atlantic

This list is probably the shortest one yet! What songs are you listening to at the moment? Let me know in the comments.
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Sunday, 11 December 2016

Christmas Make Up Must Haves

Christmas make up must haves
I know what you're thinking, did I really need to write another beauty post? Well with party season well under way, I wanted to talk to you today about some great products you can stash in your make up bag to ensure your make up is in tip top shape all Christmas. I for one in the past have struggled firstly with make up that stays on for long periods of time and secondly, make up that actually looks good. This is where these products come in.


In terms of longevity, first up is the Smashbox Photo Finish Primer. This is the first primer I found that doesn't exaggerate my dry skin which is amazing. Depending what you're used to, it can be seen as pricey but I think for the dry skin reason alone, it's an excellent purchase. With this primer I also find my make up glides on smoothly making it easy to achieve a flawless base. It also makes my make up last considerably longer than when I don't wear it. To add just one more bonus, it also comes in travel size. Thumbs up.


Next in line is a love or hate product. When it first came out I absolutely raved about the Benefit They're Real mascara. For me, this mascara nails two of my biggest mascara must haves. It's waterproof and it's lengthening. Also, it doesn't clump or transfer. No matter how many different mascaras I try, I always end up coming back to this one. Definitely a staple for me.


If versatility is what you're looking for, then the Fall Into Frost pallet from Morphe ticks all of the boxes. There are seven nude shades which accompany the most pigmented shimmer shades I think I've ever seen. There are so many different looks you could create with this pallet making it such a good buy for yourself or a loved one this Christmas. It's a game changer.


Last but definitely not least, a berry lipstick. My personal favourite is 03 from the Rimmel Lasting Finish range. I reach for these lipsticks over any other and have them in so many different shades. This berry shade can be worn all through the holidays and is the perfect compliment to any look you create from the Fall Into Frost pallet. Believe me, I've tried.

I hope you enjoyed reading about my make up must haves this Christmas, I'd love you know what your make up essentials are!


christmas make up essentials
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Wednesday, 7 December 2016

5 Beauty Products Worth Purchasing

beauty products worth purchasing
As Christmas is closing in, I thought I'd talk about some beauty products I will definitely be reaching for over the holidays. Now, I don't want to talk about the cult classics because they're classics for a reason, I want to mention some products that you may be wanting to try and are not sure if they work or ones you've never really thought of at all. These products are absolute go to's for me so keep reading to find a few products worth buying. 

1. Elizabeth Arden Skin Balancing Cleanser

I first bought this as an emergency when I realised I'd forgotten my skincare en route to Las Vegas - well done Hollie. My silly mistake aside, I have grown to love this face wash so much. It does an absolutely perfect job at balancing the oils and dryness on my face and helps my make up apply like a dream. Also, because it's only a light exfoliant there's minimal redness after use.

2. Lush Floating Islands 

I always thought these were a bit of a princess product and that something that small could never make a difference. Boy was I wrong. Besides the Butterball bath bomb, I've never had such soft skin after using bath products than when I use this. It's a dream.

3. Fleur De Force Lashes

We all know there have been many a blogger/youtuber bringing out products over the past few years. Truthfully I wouldn't even give some of them the time of day but when Fleur brought out her range with Eylure I had to try them. I can 100% say that I absolutely love not just these but the whole range. They're just so well made and the styles are noticeable while remaining comfortable and natural. 

4. Mary Lou-Manizer

For me, this changed the highlighting game. I'd tried pretty much ever drugstore highlighter out there but didn't feel quite ready to put Champagne Pop in my basket. I discovered this and quickly fell in love, the slightest brush gives you the most amazing glow. 

5. Urban Decay De-Slick

After reading that you may be thinking two things, firstly that All Nighter is 100% the only setting spray in the world that works or two, that setting sprays are a fad. Wrong and Wrong. This setting spray holds my make up in place so much better than any other and doesn't leave my make up feeling heavy or cakey. It also seems to be less sticky as a base, easy to work with on a sponge and THE BEST at foiling eyeshadows. As for the second point, they're not a fad. Take my word for it.

I'd love to know if there are any non-cult products that you swear by, let me know below!



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Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Gift Guide for Interior Lovers

Gift Guide for Interior Lovers
Around this time of year, gift guides are my favourite posts to read and videos to watch. I loved them long before I started this blog and I get so much inspiration from them. 

I couldn't wait to join in this year but I didn't want to do another him/her/beauty/fashion guide because although I love reading and watching them, there are so many amazing ones out there that I didn't want to 'get lost' so to speak.

Now flashback to December 2015, my partner and I were in the process of moving from what can only be marketed as a one bedroom apartment to a house. A house with a path, back door and room for a washing machine - we'd never been so excited. 

We didn't really consider that we actually had to fill this house, not in a cluttered sense but we needed it to feel like home. 

It was a blessing and a curse that we moved in on December 20th. Yes it was 5 days before Christmas but it also meant that our friends and family had no trouble buying us gifts. We received some really thoughtful and useful gifts and quicky managed to build up our new home. 

Today, I thought I'd share with you a gift guide for those people in your life that are moving or for if you just fancy a little spruce this holiday season. Lets get started! 


Gift Guide for Interior Lovers

Photo Frames

Frames are so useful whether it's a old house or new. These ones by Umbra are so unique, I'd literally never seen anything like the so I picked up two from John Lewis last year! They're a little pricier than your average frame but they're great. 

Cutlery

I know this isn't something you'd normally buy for someone but I thought as occasion cutlery this set was brilliant. I think it'd be so lovely to use at Christmas and for dinner parties. This set is from George and is just £20 but depending where you shop and the quality you want, they can vary in price.

Trinket Dishes 

Everybody loves trinket dishes. They're useful for hair pins, rings, keys you name it. These ones from Marks and Spencer are SO adorable and even better, they're monogrammed. I'm a sucker for anything with a 'H' on which if you ever saw my house you'd know. I would be so happy to receive one of these in my stocking.

Record Player

This is the highest price gift I chose but I think you can't go wrong with a record player. I bought my partner and I the size down from this as a moving in gift and we love it so much. The Crosley X Urban Outfitters collection is so beautiful and the metal details really add something special. It also means for the next few birthdays and Christmas you can buy them records - like the Pandora bracelet effect but cooler.

Board Game

Who doesn't love gathering around the table with a few drinks playing a board game? Monopoly takes a little too long for my liking but I thought this Pub Quiz game was genius! It's a really affordable game and the reviews are great - I'll definitely be picking one up. 

Hand Soap

Hands down (see what I did there) one of the most useful gifts we received last year was a set of hand soap and lotion. This Cowshed duo is super luxurious and would look great on anyone's sink.  

Candles

Candles are a great gift at any price point. Diptyque stock some great smelling candles but I know a lot of my friends would love to receive this particular one from Jo Malone. Gorgeous.

Glasses

Like the cutlery, not the normal gift to buy people but how amazing are these monogrammed glasses? I am in love and am dying to get my hands on one! These are so beautiful and I don't know anyone who would not be happy to receive one of these.

Stationary

Stationary is a great, basic gift that is useful to everyone. I've been lusting over this Kate Spade notepad for the longest time. It might just find it's way into someones stocking.

There you have it, my top picks for the interior lover or new home owner in your life! What are your recommendations? 

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Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Daring To Be Different

After reading Emily Alice's blog, I couldn't help but start writing this list. I've been pondering a post like this for a while but as it's a little bit out of the norm, I thought I'd be susceptible to a "You're so negative" backlash - something I wasn't prepared to deal with in the positivity driven community.

I've noticed some people around here are not always that accepting of those with a different opinion, whether it's about lip-gloss or the latest elections. However sometimes there are things that some like and others don't. Just like Marmite - which I happen to hate. 

I hope everyone realises that it's okay to be different and it's okay to not follow trends. Sure, being trendy might gain you recognition and popularity but doesn't being different do that more so? 

If you want to read my round up of things I'm just not that into and bandwagons I haven't jumped on, keep reading. 

1. Pumpkin Spiced & Gingerbread Lattes

I'm not a big coffee drinker at all to be honest and until recently, the only thing I ordered from Starbucks was a tea. 


2. MAC Lipsticks


Controversial I know. After Kylie Jenner and her voluptuous lip fillers, MACs lip sticks and liners exploded in popularity. To quote one of my friends 'I'm obsessed with MAC lipsticks'. No you're not, you're following a trend. I've tried better L'Oreal, sorry not sorry.


3. Positivity 


I don't mean I'm not into positivity in a general sense but in a blogging sense. Sometimes in Twitter chats when the question 'What do you dislike most about blogging?' question arises people will respond 'I love everything' 'There's nothing I dislike' 'Everything is amazing' etc. It's like people are scared to have a negative opinion in case it effects their views/opportunities. Blogging can be difficult and very time consuming and it's okay to admit that! Emily covered a lot of this in her post - I'm so glad someone shares my opinion. 


4. Over Exposed Photos


I'm all for a nice white, crisp photo but the other day I saw a photo showcasing some white shelves. I literally couldn't see the shelves. I like to up the exposure until it is crisp and white, not until it has disappeared. 


5. Clean Eating


This is just a no. 


I'm thinking of doing this type of post whenever I reach a list of 5 things to discuss. I don't live in a perfect bubble so I'm more than happy to share. What do you think? If you have anything you'd like to add, be sure to leave a comment!
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Monday, 14 November 2016

Winter Nail Polish Edit

winter nail polishes
If you have been reading my blog for a few months now, you'll know that back in August I shared some of my favourite nail polish picks for the coming season. Now that winter has rolled around (seriously how has this year gone so fast?) I thought it was only fair to show you the shades I'm gravitating towards now. 

winter nail polishes
First up is the beautiful Haute Red by ORLY. No winter season is complete without a strong red polish and this one really is amazing. I've always found that ORLY polishes glide on so easily and have a rich true-colour pay off.

winter nail polishes
My second pick for the season is the Plumb On Baby Light My Fire by Barry M. For some reason, solid black polish looks awful on my skin tone but this looks great. Surprisingly it's really subtle and doesn't give me that careless look. 

winter nail polishes
Truthfully, this is Dark Side Of The 'Shroom is of my go to colours for any season. It goes with absolutely everything and I always find myself going back to it. I'm also so glad this colour is in the Sunset range, this means I can literally get a perfect weeks wear out of it!

winter nail polishes
I actually need to replace this shade as I'm almost out, I wore it to death last year and I still love it as much as when I first purchased it. The shade is Fuchsia Generation and it's so versatile for the whole season. 

winter nail polishes
Last but definitely not least is Halo De Rose from Bourjois. The brush in this polish makes it so easy to apply - not quite one second but close enough. I use this polish if I'm feeling lazy because it's so easy to top up. It's a great glitter polish for the festive season and I'll definitely be picking up more from this range!

There you have it, my winter nail polish picks. I hope you enjoyed reading and be sure to let me know if you have any go-to winter colours or nail polish brands that you love!


This post is not sponsored.




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Tuesday, 8 November 2016

5 Tips For Moving House

Some of you may know that around this time last year I was moving house. It was without a doubt the most stressful thing my partner and I have ever done but we got there, eventually.

Prior to this, the only time I'd moved house properly was with my parents going on 15 years ago. I didn't have a lot to do with it and mostly just sat back and watched, much to my parents dismay.

As we were moving to a bigger house, we thought the process would be simple. What we didn't consider was the fact we were buying bit by bit before the move which meant we were accumulating a hell of a lot of stuff and also that we would have to buy new furniture and, the worst part, put it together. 

The whole moving process was such a learning curve for me that I felt I could share some handy hints and tips for when you or anyone you know moves.

1. If you can, do it gradually.

We were lucky enough (due to strategic planning and saving) to get the keys two months before the tenancy on our apartment ended. This meant that, as much as we were excited, we could move a little bit every day. We also put up a few pieces of furniture each evening so that when the first night in our new home rolled around, we pretty much had everything there. 

2. Label boxes with the rooms they're going into. 

This is so helpful, especially if you have people helping you move. It saves the time and energy of moving all of the boxes in and moving them again at a later time. This means you can unpack a room at a time having everything in there. This tip also goes for drawers and cupboards too - plan where everything is going before hand and unpack straight into them. 

3. Buy extra tools so friends can help you

This one is pretty self explanatory. You can pick tools up for super cheap at places like B&Q and Wilkos. Invite your friends and family round and rope them into putting something together, even if it's just a shelving unit. It will help in the long run and once you've cracked open a bottle of wine, it wont even feel like work. Fun fact - we put everything in our house together with packs of £4 screwdrivers, they really don't have to be expensive. 

4. Remember the three T's - tea, towels and toilet roll

These are 100% the fundamentals for a first night in a new home if you've moved all in one day. Tea for you and your helpers, towels for dirty hands or when you're showering the IKEA regret off and toilet roll for.. well you know. 

5. Don't make a shit drawer

Don't even do it. It's a new home, everything should have a place. Don't be tempted. 


There you have it. I hope you find these tips useful and be sure to leave your suggestions down below!



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Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Favourites Playlist - October

We've done it, we've made it through October. The mixed 'I don't know' weather is over and we can officially wear jackets to gigs. I'm excited.

When I wrote my August Playlist I was very much listening to all things festival - think Gorgon City and Sigma. This month, I've been taking more comfort in bands. Real hearty music that gets me ready for the day.

I've discovered bands this month such as Billy Talent that I've never listened to before and rekindled old loves like Twin Atlantic.  One of my favourite bands Deaf Havana also released a new track this month and naturally, I love it. 

TRACKS

Trigger - Deaf Havana
Afraid of Heights - Billy Talent
Undefeated (Viva Hysteria) - Def Leppard
The Chaser - Twin Atlantic 
Worthless - Bullet For My Valentine 
Closer - The Chainsmokers
1979 - The Smashing Pumpkins
In Vein - Alkaline Trio

What songs are you listening to at the moment? Let me know in the comments. 
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Wednesday, 26 October 2016

4 Halloween Make Up Looks

I'm so unprepared for Halloween that it's borderline hilarious. Until yesterday, I was dead set on attending my one (sad face) Halloween party as Paul Stanley from Kiss. 

To get some inspiration I went onto YouTube and realised that if I continued with this Kiss idea, I would end up in a Mean Girls "Ex Wife" situation. In case you're unfamiliar, it's the kind of situation where you would turn up to a Halloween party looking scary when everyone else is dressed more provocatively - think sexy kitten as oppose to dead cat. 

The more I searched and clicked away, I came across Chrisspy. I'm sure you all know who she is but if you don't, why not? I literally sat for probably the best part of an hour watching, learning and most of all wishing that I could achieve such FLAWLESS make up. She's a god. 
 Credit: Chrisspy
As it goes, my Paul Stanley idea went right out of the window and I decided, to hell with it, I'm going to try out one of these looks and rock it IF IT KILLS ME. I picked the four above looks as a starting point. I mean for god sake, who really looks like this. I'm jealous. 

Now, to add to the unpreparedness, I have no idea which one to choose. I LOVE the top left or bottom right but I feel they're the most ambitious of the 4. Of course they would be. 

I'll definitely be posting a photo to Instagram of the look I eventually choose, in the meantime please help me decide.

Which look do you like best and which do you think is the most achievable? 
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Monday, 24 October 2016

10 Songs For Your Halloween Playlist

pumpkin patch
My my hasn't Halloween come around quickly. I feel like I blinked in September and now here I am, deciding what sweets will make children leave my house quicker and what face paint will arrive in time for Saturday. What a rush. 

Thankfully, I'm not hosting a party this year but I'm putting myself in charge of music for the one (wow one, just call me the social queen) party that I am attending. 

Party music is such a hit and miss. I don't want it to be too cheesy, too themed or too 'oh my god what idiot chose this song'. That in mind, I thought about the songs I wouldn't mind hearing as I regretfully gulp those brain shaped vodka jellies.
  1. Kiss - Crazy Nights
  2. Nightmare Before Christmas - This is Halloween - 100% obligatory
  3. The Cranberries - Zombie
  4. Marilyn Manson - Tainted Love
  5. Pendulum - Tarantula
  6. Drowning Pool - Bodies - Absolute throwback to being 14
  7. AC/DC - Highway to Hell
  8. Meat Loaf - Bat Out Of Hell
  9. Blue Oyster Cult - Don't Fear The Reaper
  10. Alice Cooper - Poison
I'm sorry for the short post today but the past few days have been so back to back that I feel like I've not had time to breathe. If you're still reading, I'd love to know what's on your playlist?

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Thursday, 20 October 2016

5 Bands To See Live

5 Bands To See Live
I don't know about you but I absolutely love live music. Whether it's a band I've listened to over and over or an artist I've not listened to before, I can't get enough. Fortunately, I've been able to see a few bands in my short years (that is nor a height nor age pun) so it's a pleasure for me to share these with you today.

These bands made this list not just for their music but for their performance, for doing something more than selling a ticket. Here are 5 bands I loved and I would 100% recommend seeing live.

Mallory Knox

I've managed to catch these guys on their album tours for Signals and Asymmetry and they were incredible. I've never seen five men so passionate about what they do. They have so much enthusiasm and always connect with the crowd in a way you don't see much anymore. Whether you're a die hard fan or if you've never listened before, it's a great show. If you ever get chance, see them at Manchester Ritz and stand on the balcony. You'll thank me afterwards.

Pendulum

I know their shows few and far between these days but I genuinely think that seeing Pendulum was one of the best gigs I've ever been to. There was such a buzz about the crowd and seeing them in Manchester Central made all of the difference. I was only sixteen and I'd never been to a venue like it. It suited the music and their fans so well. Perfect.

Meat Loaf

If you know me, you'll know how much of a Meat Loaf fan I am - you can laugh, everyone else does ha. I used to listen to Meat Loaf on car journeys with my family when I was younger and I never thought I'd get the chance to see him in concert. He toured when I was eighteen, he was sixty six. It didn't matter, he sung his heart out and I joined in. Note: This is not a crush.

Sigma

The energy in Sigma's sets doesn't even compare. The first time I saw them, I was in complete awe and didn't want it to end. I can't imagine what they would be like at a smaller venue but having seen them at two festivals, they're on my watch list for next year. Even if you think you don't like their music, you won't be able to resist.

Def Leppard

This is cheating a little bit because I've never actually seen Def Leppard live. I have however watched and listened to Viva Hysteria and wow, I would have given anything to have been there. They're one of my favourite bands and I wouldn't hesitate to see them if they toured again - especially if it was in Vegas.

I'd love to hear the bands you've seen or want to see live, let me know!


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Thursday, 6 October 2016

10 Things To Do This Autumn

Autumn leaves
How is it October? More to the point, how are we a week into October? I genuinely feel like this year is flying by faster than any before and I can't believe I caught myself looking at Christmas baubles earlier. This year, I thought I'd make the most of the autumn/fall season so I've compiled a list of 10 things I want to do.

1. Carve Pumpkins - I've only started doing this in recent years but I absolutely love it. Sure, it's a tonne of work, incredibly messy and emotionally draining (Am I selling this yet?) but the end result is brilliant.

2. Buy Bath Goodies - Can we all take a moment to appreciate Lush's new collection? I love that it's Halloween themed and I'm happy that the Christmas goodies have started coming out. Queue bath season.

3. Burn Candles - Need I say more? I'm all about the tobacco candles for this season, I love their rich smell and can't get enough of them on these colder nights.

4. Wear Cosy Jumpers - Naturally none of the jumpers from last year fit me now so I've placed a tiny order with Very. I'm feeling mustard yellow and green.

5. Go to a good pub - Cosy by the fire style after a delicious Sunday roast. Are you feeling me yet?

6. Plan your social calendar - Halloween parties, sleepovers, bonfires, you name it get them all pencilled in with your best pals.

7. Go For Walks - We all know how beautiful the sunshine and leaves are in Autumn. Let's get out and see them instead of liking them on Instagram.

8. Cook Hearty Meals - Sunday roasts, juicy steaks, bowls of chilli and most definitely a good stew. I love eating meals like this in the colder months.

9. Read a book - Sometimes I actually forget about reading. With all of the content available on the internet these days, picking up a book is not something I think of doing - but I want to. I'm determined to read a couple of books over this season. Let me know what you recommend!

10. Blog More - For me, sometimes the cold weather can be unbearable so what better excuse to blog more. Think of all of those autumnal themed posts. I can almost see it now.

There you have it, a list of 10 things I want to do this autumn - I'll let you know how many I tick off.

What’s on your list? Let me know!

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