Sunday, 25 January 2015

Lifestyle | Insta-Update

 photo InstagramCatchUp1_zpslzikt8dy.jpg My mum just got back from Budapest, which has left me feeling even more nostalgic for this beautiful city. Honestly if I could live anywhere, right now I think Budapest would top that list! This was taken over Christmas, on a pretty misty and chilly day, the Parliament building is stunning. It's been quite cold in the UK as well so I've been wrapping up warm in possible the best coat ever, I had been looking for a quilted down coat for a while and when I found this one on sale at Mango I couldn't resist. So warm and snuggly, I haven't worn anything else since I got it!
 photo InstagramCatchUp2_zpscqcb1xis.jpgAnother latergram, my sister and I took a break from writing our essays during the Christmas holidays to have a little gym/swim/lunch day at a local hotel, and it was amazing, the perfect treat for a week otherwise filled with referencing, word counts and endless quotations! This gorgeous little notebook was a gift from my mum for Christmas, and another Hungarian themed photo because she asked the lady making it to use a map of Hungary and put Budapest right in the middle! I absolutely love it, I think thoughtful things like that are the best. 
 photo InstagramCatchUp3_zpsyr6iu4ge.jpgI was lucky enough to win Benefit's The Porefessional on twitter the other day, and it made me so happy! I've tried a sample of this that came with a magazine before and loved it so to have a full size one is brilliant and I'll definitely be popping a little review of this up before long! Finally, I've enjoyed getting my camera back out to take a few blog photos and am definitely re-learning a few things! 

What have you been up to recently?

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Wednesday Wishlist #12 | Calm Neutrals


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Clockwise from top left:
Today's Wednesday Wishlist reflects my desire at the moment for soft textures, neutral colours and general relaxation, with a hint of excitement that Spring could just be around the corner (this is my optimistic side speaking, since at home it's begun to snow).

A new phone has been firmly on my wishlist since last September, when mine began to freeze on me. I managed to fix that little niggle but have been dreaming of an iPhone ever since - I've never owned anything from Apple but have a feeling that this year all that will change.

The entire Rosie for Autograph and M&S range is absolutely gorgeous, and has a really luxurious feel to it. I've been lusting after this pretty bra for a while now for its silk/lace combo and lovely nude colour.

Roll necks are something I never expected to get on board with, but am certainly warming to the idea. This just looks so cosy and versatile, plus it would keep your neck warm!

This perfume smells absolutely divine, and there is a lot to be said for a classic, understated perfume bottle! I don't normally go for perfume but aside from Thierry Mugler Angel, this is the best scent I've found yet...a definite splurge but oh so tempting.

Talking of things which smell divine, this Fairy Dust reed diffuser certainly does. I recently got an Airwick candle (I think?) and it makes my whole room smell so amazing but is on its last legs - this would be the perfect replacement.

Understated, minimal and super pretty, this clutch bag would be a great spring/summer addition. The rose gold detailing stops it from being too boring - rose gold will always be a favourite!

I used to wear evil eye friendship bracelets all the time from family holidays to Turkey, and this is a much more grown up and sophisticated version! Really simple and from an Etsy shop which I am totally addicted to at the moment.

What's on your wishlist this week?

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Currently Loving | L'Oréal Sunkiss Jelly

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Since adding an ombre effect to my hair a few years ago, I've been pretty good at binning the hair dye habit and sticking to a once yearly refresh dye of the ends of my hair to make sure the blonde is still looking...well, blonde. However sometimes it's nice to shake things up a bit and I recently felt a craving for those kind of blonde highlights you can only really get in summer, when the sun peeks his head out. This is where L'Oréal Sunkiss Jelly comes in. I'd heard a little about this already and was pretty intrigued - it sounded like John Frieda's go-blonder spray, but with a chance for a bit more control over the placement (the John Frieda spray actually gave me blisters on my hands and dried my hair out quite a lot, so a definite thumbs down!). Also I will admit that the fact this was called a jelly pulled me in as well. 

At £5.99, this isn't an expensive product and you can quite often find it on offer for £4.99, so keep a look out. Coming in 3 different shades: 01: for light brown to dark blonde, 02: for dark blonde to light blonde, and 03: for light blonde to very light blonde. Honestly, my friends and I have spent some time figuring out which is strongest so if anyone knows leave a comment! As the name suggests, this promises to gradually lighten hair to give that just got back from a holiday effect - L'Oréal have also called this 'summer in a tube' which if they could create would be great, however on the hair it definitely delivers! Enriched with camellia oil and containing no ammonia, this also aims not to dry out your hair, which being something I have struggled with a few other lightening products, is a welcome change.

Application

You use the jelly on dry hair, and it really is the easiest thing to apply. You simply pop on the included gloves, squirt a bit onto your hands and apply where you want your hair to be lighter! You can use this to add an ombre effect, or for all over lightening - on my first tube, I went for the latter, and now I'm on my second purchase I'm using it just on the ends to brighten them up as I'm now as light as I want to be on top. Once your happy, either let it dry naturally, or for increased effectivity, blow dry your hair - I always did this as I wanted to get the most out of it. I previously had really long hair and managed to get 3 all-over applications from the tube - now I have shorter hair and am using it on the ends, I've done 3 applications and will probably get one more. 

Results

Honestly, I am so happy with the effect this produces. It is a gradual lightener so don't expect a massive difference the first time, but it really does add a lovely lift to your hair and after a few uses there is a pretty clear difference. I also found that it brightened up my existing blonde and turned it a much nicer shade, which was a nice added bonus - it might not do this for everyone, my blonde wasn't the best shade when I first used it and could have done with a bit of help, but nonetheless a nice addition! I love the control you get using this, which I am really appreciating in using it for the ombre effect at the moment. I haven't found it to dry my hair out at all either which is great.

All in all, this is a lovely little product and pretty much does what it says on the tin - a natural sunkissed effect, with minimal fuss and effort. 

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Lifestyle | Little Things

Todays post is somewhat inspired by Mollie's wonderful "Keeping Happy in January" post (check out her blog, it's gorgeous). With the winter blues setting in, it's the little things which really make a difference and act as little pick-me-ups. I tend to get quite gloomy in winter, I don't know about you but the cold weather, lack of sunshine and longer nights have me wishing I could stay snuggled up in bed forever - sadly this isn't a practical option! These are a few things that have been keeping me smiling recently.

 photo LittleThings2_zpsb167ead1.jpg The loveliest handcream, a bit of an overpowering scent but the fact that this makes my hands feel so super soft more than makes up for that. I got this in Budapest, and it's just perfection, I'm addicted to anything with Aloe Vera in at the moment which could explain this little purcase!

 photo LittleThings6_zpscbc6ea80.jpg I recently finished reading Fifty Shades of Grey for the second time, I don't care what anyone says I love it and just as with the first time I read it, it totally hooked me. I haven't read or watched Twilight so the whole fan fiction thing goes totally over my head and I can just appreciate the bad writing and ease of reading. Perfect switch-your-brain-off material, I can't wait until the film comes out! If anyone has any book recommendations I'd love to hear them.

 photo LittleThings1_zps5123a1ae.jpg I'm awful for painting my nails and then leaving them for weeks until they're chipped and faded (lovely!). This year I'm making an effort to be more on top of the situation. I got this gorgeous L'Oréal nail polish in one of those freebie boxes they give before Christmas and absolutely love it, I didn't have a true red shade before and this one is pretty classy.

 photo LIttleThings4_zps24275336.jpg After all the cookies from the Sainsbury's bakery section, these have to be the best biscuits ever. There's been a lot of hibernating in bed, watching Friends and eating these recently thanks to the chilly conditions outside, there's nothing better when it's cold out than snuggling up and forgetting about the world.

Bear with me on photo creativity levels, I'd love to start being a bit more original and creative but am easing myself into it at the moment :) 

What little things help to cheer you up?

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