Friday, 29 April 2011

Not so royal!

Black cardigan – Asos

Dress – F&F at Tesco

Boots – Topshop

Rings – Primark

Necklace – Primark

My second post today, but I love doing OOTD's and I'd quite like to try and put one up everyday – although I know this may be quite a challenge as I've got so much work to do! Doing these posts makes me think more about what I'm going to wear and pushes me to be more daring. Most days I can't be bothered to think what to wear and end up putting on the same old stuff, and neglecting so many items! But, it's so much easier in the summer because you don't have to worry about putting on a great big coat and loads of layers. I often think if my outfit's going to be concealed, why bother trying.

I know this dress is scandalously short, as I realised right after taking these photos, so I popped on some leggings to make it more wearable outdoors and stop anyone from seeing my bum! The dress itself is from Tesco and was so cheap, but I love it and the quality is fantastic for the price! Again, I'm wearing my beloved cowboy boots from Topshop. I've had them a few years now and they're still in great condition, sometimes paying a bit more does pay off, especially for boots. I like to buy really durable pairs that will go for years and years!

I hope you've all had a lovely day, whether you watched the wedding or not. I know some people don't want to hear another word about it – my fiancĂ© included – but I loved it and found it very emotional, perhaps because I started thinking of my wedding day, or perhaps it's just a girl thing! Did anyone else cry?



Pardon my roots

Tartan shirt – Ebay

Black tank top – Topshop

Denim shorts – Topshop

Black tights – River Island

Cowboy boots – Topshop

Rings – Asos, vintage

Nail polish – Essie Van D'go

I thought I'd do an outfit of the day post seen as this is all I have time for at the moment. I'm coming to the end of my degree and it's taking over my life! Anyway, I had a few free hours yesterday so went to get my roots done, which was long overdue! I didn't see the point of making my hair look nice just to go to the hairdressers, so I pulled it into a loose messy bun and threw on some 'grungy' clothes to match. I like to change my look up all the time, I'm not the kind of person that sticks to the same style because I just get bored, so this is probably very different than what you've seen me wear before. I like to call myself a chameleon - changing according to my surroundings. But, I love the grunge/rock look, mainly because I'm into the music and am always going to rock bars, pubs, gigs, festivals, etc! At the moment I'm so excited for the summer and the festival season – there are some amazing line-ups!

What do you think of my new setting for outfit posts? I feel like I've finally established a good spot in my house to photograph OOTD's. I found my bedroom was making the photos a bit cluttered and a simple white background makes it much easier to see the outfit. Hopefully in time I'll be able to perfect the lighting, and perhaps even get an SLR, maybe for my birthday in the summer!

I hope everyone is having a fabulous week! It's the day of the Royal Wedding and I'm so excited to see Kate's dress. I'm watching the coverage on BBC1 right now and am a little jealous that I didn't go into London to watch the wedding in Hyde Park. Oh well, I'll enjoy the after party tomorrow, as the area I live in is having a big party to celebrate – any excuse right?



Saturday, 23 April 2011

Fake Tanning Tips & Tricks

After making a video on fake tanning, I promised to do a blog post. That was about two weeks ago now, and I am horrified that I've left it so long. Talk about procrastination!

I've got a couple of extra products I didn't mention in my video, including gradual tanners. So, we'll start out with preparation then move on the tanning process itself and finally aftercare.

I will also run down a list of do's and don'ts that I've not seen mentioned much before, but feel are quite important in order to keep a lovely even tan.


First off, it's important to scrub your whole body to remove dead skin cells. Try to focus on your hands, elbows, feet and knees as they are often the most problematic area when fake tanning. 

My favourite exfoliating products of the moment (as shown in the picture above) are as follows:

Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub – This smells gorgeous, like lime mixed with cakes. It contains almond oil, so it can leave a slightly oily residue on your skin. If you plan to tan yourself not long after scrubbing with this, be sure to wash off all the oil with an oil free body wash. Oil can get in the way of the tanning ingredients and leave you with patches.

Soap and Glory Flake Away – I bought this at the airport when I was travelling to Gran Canaria about a month ago. It's much the same as Sugar Crush, only it smells like Miss Dior Cherie perfume. Again, it leaves your skin feeling slightly oily, so you should wash this off before tanning.

Boots Exfoliating Gloves – These are my holy grail tanning item. I have a few pairs, one in each bathroom in the house and also my gym bag. They're so cheap, last forever, and are the easiest way to exfoliate. I find the best way to use these is in conjunction with a body wash, as without it, the gloves can't slide over your body as easily. I use these everyday, except the day after I tan (unless I have any dark brown patches).

Clean & Clear Shine Control Daily Facial Scrub – I'm not a huge fan of facial scrubs as they always feel too harsh on my skin, but for tanning purposes it has to be done. This oil-free scrub by Clean & Clear is one of the gentlest I've tried, so long as you don't rub too hard! Another option is to use a muslin cloth, like you get with the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish. A muslin cloth is probably the gentlest exfoliator out there.

As well as exfoliating, I like to cleanse my pores thoroughly to stop build up of the product which in the end will cause spots. 

The products I would suggest are:

Neutrogena Visibly Clear 2-in-1 – I use this face wash most days as it contains salicylic acid which goes deep into your pores to remove dirt. It's perfect for fake tanning addicts or anyone who has problem skin. It's also fabulous for going on holiday, because you don't have to bring an extra face mask!

Dermalogica Skin Refining Masque – My beautician recommended this product to me the last time I went for a facial as I was having problems with little under skin pimples. Not the huge angry type of spot that you can dry out and will be gone within a week, but the type that stay for ages but don't really hit the surface. She told me to use the mask a couple of times a week and I have to say I did start to notice a difference. It's great for anyone with oily skin, but also contains soothing extracts that stop your skin from becoming irritated.

Botanics Conditioning Clay Mask – While this mask does clear out your pores, it is also meant to condition your skin. If I exfoliate before using this, my skin feels so lovely and smooth – perfect for fake tan application.

Soap and Glory No Clogs Allowed! Face Mask – This is a newbie in my cupboard, but I already love it! It contains little scrubby bits and heats up on application to your skin. You don't have to leave the product on for very long like normal masks, so it's great for when you don't have too much time on your hands.

Tanning – getting a light subtle glow

Gradual tanners are said to be the foolproof way to fake tan, and while I do think this can be true, I've made many mistakes with these types of tanners. When buying a gradual tanner, you've got to make sure you get the right colour for your skin tone. I've bought ones that are for a darker skin tone in the past, and through bad application have come out with terrible streaks, especially near my hands. Personally I find these types of tanners really difficult as they contain no colour guide and for me they take too long to dry – I'm very impatient and want to be able to dress immediately. 

Having said this, there are a few products I do like. 

Here are my top three:

Dove Summer Glow – Smells half decent as they've added just the right amount of perfume – too much and you're left feeling sick, too little and you smell like digestive biscuits! It gives a soft glow that rarely streaks – unless you make a mistake yourself. This gradual tanner is a favourite among many YouTube beauty girlies!

St Tropez Everyday Gradual Tan for body in Light Medium – This product was initially my favourite scented gradual tanner; however, the smell can get a bit overwhelming when you've been wearing it for hours on end. It produces a lovely glow and is perfect for using in conjunction with other St Tropez products to top up your tan. However, it is quite pricey and I personally wouldn't purchase it again when I could just buy Dove Summer Glow.

St Tropez Everyday Gradual Tan for Face in Light Medium – As I said above, the scent while nice at first can be a tad overwhelming. However, I like this product because my face fades very fast and I sometimes need to reapply tanner daily to maintain a healthy glow. This, again, is very pricey and a bit of Dove Summer Glow works just as well – even though it's meant for the body!

Tanning – medium sun-kissed glow

My favourite tanning routine is to use St Moriz (in the original formula) over my body and face, then St Tropez Gradual Tan Spray over my hands and feet. I find hands and feet hard to get perfect without using a spray tan, and the normal version of St Tropez is too dark in comparison to the St Moriz.

St Moriz Instant Self Tanning Mousse – Famous for being a dupe of St Tropez at a fraction of the cost. I do think the colour is slightly lighter than St Tropez though, but you can build the colour up over a couple of days. In England you can buy it at TJ Hughes for £2.99, or if you don't have one near you, try Ebay. The only problem I have with St Moriz is the way the bottle is made. When you shake it, lots of product comes out and if you plan to take this on holiday with you, you better wrap it up well 'cause it leaks horrendously!

St Tropez Everyday Gradual Tan Spray – I find this works better with St Moriz than the St Tropez Bronzing Spray. Also, as my hands fade quicker from washing, I use this to top up my hands after a couple of days.
Note* When tanning my face I like to apply an oil-free moisturiser first. This keeps my face moisturised but doesn't create a barrier that could lead to patches.

Tanning – dark tan

For an even darker tan, these are the options I would go for:

St Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse – A cult favourite, and all time winner in the fake tanner line-up! It gives a lovely dark tan that lasts for days and doesn't go patchy – if you apply properly. The only reason I don't use it as much anymore is because of the price.

St Moriz Dark Instant Self Tanning Mousse – For a darker glow this is the product to go for. I am currently testing this out at the moment, so a full review will be up in the next couple of weeks on my blog and hopefully on YouTube.

St Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Spray – Perfect for hands and feet or for all over your body. I tried this with the St Moriz (original version) and the colour was far too dark, perhaps it will be better alongside St Moriz Dark.


My preferred method of self tan application is to use a mitt, like the one shown above by St Tropez. I do find that I need to wear gloves underneath however, as product sometimes runs through along the seam and stains my nails. 

The best gloves I've used are the St Tropez Latex Gloves, but I'm sure you can find cheaper ones at a beauty supply store or Ebay. 

For my face I use a small cosmetic sponge, like you can buy in any drugstore, I haven't photographed it because it's stained from fake tan and doesn't look very photographic!


It's very important to moisturise after you fake tan. 

The products shown above are my favourites at the moment, and I use them in the following ways:

Vaseline Aloe Fresh Hydration Body Lotion – The day after tanning I use this to moisturise my body. It doesn't contain mineral oil (baby oil) which can cause your fake tan to come off and has not caused me any problems before.

Clean & Clear Shine Control Daily Facial Moisturiser – I use this on my face before I fake tan to keep my face lovely and moisturised. As it's oil-free it doesn't create a barrier and cause patches.

Soltan Moisturising Aftersun Lotion – This is a basic cheap lotion that I use after fake tanning and also on my hands, feet, elbows and knees before tanning. Again, it doesn't contain mineral oil and has never made my tan go patchy or streaky. If I'm only tanning my upper body, I also use this to blend the fake tan down my arms.

Removing fake tan

There are a number of different ways to remove fake tan, either if its gone wrong, is all over the palms of your hands or if you're preparing for another round of fake tanning:
  • Soak in a bath of baby oil and scrub gently with exfoliating gloves or even a flannel.
  • Mix baking soda/bicarbonate of soda with water and gently exfoliate. This works differently than a normal exfoliator and removes tan much faster, especially if you've got tan all over your palms.
  • Lemon is also great at removing fake tan. You can rub a wedge of lemon over your skin or squeeze the juice onto a cotton pad.
  • Alcohol removes fake tan. So, using a toner on your face will remove the tan.
  • You can also buy a number of fake tan removers from brands like St Tropez.
  • If all else fails, lay in a hot bath and scrub gently. This should remove some of the tan and leave you looking more even.
Do's and Don'ts
  • Try to avoid wearing too much perfume directly on your skin, or if you can, wear none at all. Perfume contains alcohol which will make your tan fade and it often happens in patches.
  • Avoid mineral oil/baby oil, and check if it's in your products. It breaks down fake tan and can leave you looking patchy.
  • SPF's higher than 30 can also ruin your tan and start to break down the product, however, if you feel you need to wear an SPF that high, sun protection is more important.
  • The acidity in sweat breaks down fake tan, so when you go to the gym try to shower as soon as possible after exercising. If you do go patchy, try applying a gradual tanner after you've showered as this will even out the patches.
  • Try to avoid baths, and take showers instead. A long soak in water will cause your tan to fade faster.
  • Moisturise everyday! I know this is a given, but it makes a huge difference.
  • Exfoliate gently everyday to every couple of days. I suggest using exfoliating gloves gently everyday and a scrub before you re-apply.

Where else you can find me:

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Lashes Lashes Lashes

Over the last six months or so, I've become a real lash addict. Not so much that I would wear them everyday, 'cause I'm way too lazy for that, but more for weekends or nights out. My brand of choice would have to be Ardell as they have a lovely selection of lashes, but they aren't that affordable if you live in the UK. So, I had a look on Ebay and came across a number of shops that sold Ardell lashes at a fraction of the cost. The packaging for these is slightly different and does not contain the lash glue, but I think this is actually a bonus seen as I prefer Duo lash glue anyway!

The lashes above are the kind you can buy in Boots (if you live in the UK) which come with lash adhesive and cost around £5.50.

All the lashes below I bought off of Ebay from a seller called Beautyzone2007 for around £2 each. It was Lollipop26 who mentioned Beautyzone2007 on her blog, so I have her to thank for finding these fantastic bargains.

The Demi Wispies (shown directly above) are definitely my favourites and I've purchased these over and over again. Because the lashes get thicker and longer as they get to the outer edge, they help to make your eyes look wider and more open. If you like winging out your eyeliner, I would suggest trying these lashes.

What are your favourite Ardell eyelashes? Let me know if you have any other favourite brands.



Sunday, 17 April 2011

Share the love

I'm feeling uninspired today and couldn't decide on a topic to blog about. It's just been one of those weekends when all you wanna do is crash out and watch back to back episodes of a favourite TV show, which for me is CSI (at the moment). Instead of writing about beauty or fashion, I've decided to give a shout out to ten lovely bloggers and 10 YouTubers. I'm only doing ten because there are so many blogs I love reading and so many YouTubers I love watching, I'd end up listing off well over 50 people.


A Creative Makeup Blog

All Things Marie


Beauty Boudoir


Girl With The Golden Touch




The Yummy Mummy's Beauty Blog












Friday, 15 April 2011

Weight loss tip and Outfit of the day

Weight loss tip

If you take a cod liver oil supplement 45mins before you workout, the good fats in the supplement will help burn the bad fats in your body.

When I first heard this tip I was sceptical, but, I did it last year before my summer holiday and I did seem to lose more weight than usual, I don't know perhaps it was all in my mind. To be honest though it does make sense as I often read how important it is to eat foods rich in 'good fats'. I'll link you to a video by DietHealth on YouTube where you can find out more information if you're interested. They don't actually talk about cod liver oil but fish oil rich in omega 3 which is pretty similar.

Outfit of the day

Sorry about the mirrored photo, I didn't have anyone to help me take photos. The bottom half of the outfit isn't that interesting anyway, just plain old skinny jeans.

When I was out yesterday I bumped into a girl I used to work with, who I hadn't seen for a year. We were chatting for a bit and she happened to mention that I looked a lot maturer, which I put down to this white and blue striped blazer. If people always think you're younger than you are, a blazer like this is a little gem. It instantly makes you look more sophisticated. This is another item in my wardrobe that will be worn to bits!

Blazer - H&M

White tank top - Topshop

Skinny jeans - Topshop

Let me know if you've tried taking cod liver oil before, I would love to know other people's results. Have a lovely weekend everyone!



Thursday, 14 April 2011

SolarOil, I think I love you!

A few weeks ago I was watching a video on YouTube by Lisa Eldridge; she mentioned that to keep her nails healthy and strong, she used CND SolarOil. I'd heard of this product before but up until this point hadn't considered giving it a try.

SolarOil contains Vitamin E and a number of other essential oils that help to protect your cuticles and nails. It is said to make nails 'tough and flexible'.

So, what do I think? I can honestly say, nothing compares to this! It's hard to show results in pictures but after using it twice I saw a noticable difference. Usually if I use a nail oil and then wash my hands afterwards, my nails will look dry and peel again. But SolarOil has kept them looking healthy even after a long hot bath, using anti-bacterial hand gel, washing my hands, cleaning etc.

I bought SolarOil off of Ebay for around £5 which I thought was quite reasonable. If you would like to find out more about it, click here.

Hope this helps anyone struggling with peeling/dry/brittle nails. I have to say, I think my quest to find my miracle nail product is over, thank you Lisa!!!


Monday, 11 April 2011

Favourite blonde hair products

Being a blonde, it's hard to keep your hair looking good, especially when it's curly as it makes it extra dry. I'm always searching for products that will make my hair look amazing, shiny and soft.

Below is some of the products I love that go a long way to giving me the luscious locks I dream of.

Boots Sun Swim & Gym shampoo for coloured hair doesn't need much of an explanation. It's fab for when you go swimming as it helps to get chlorine out your hair - much needed when you're a blonde!

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Gold Shimmer, Silver Shimmer and With a Hint of Colour. These are great for more than just soaking up the oil in your hair, they also cover up dark roots when you can't be bothered to go to the hairdresser.

KMS Colour Vitality Blonde Leave-in creme. This leave-in conditioner has a slight hint of purple that helps to rid blonde hair of brassiness, perfect for in between colourings.

Kerastase Resistance Ciment Thermique. This leave-in treatment is not only a heat protectant but also helps to strengthen hair from breakage, which can be a problem when having blonde or even any colour in your hair. You gently squeeze this into your hair before brushing and it's meant to stay in your hair for up to five washes.

Redken Blonde Glam Colour Enhancer in Perfect Platinum. This product is a toning treatment for cool toned blonde's, but, there is also one for warmer tones.

Redken Blonde Glam shampoo. This moisturising shampoo has my hair smelling like grapefruit and feeling lovely and silky.

Sheer Blonde Colour Renew. A purple shampoo that doesn't break the bank. This is the cheapest toning shampoo I've found and if you live in England, Boots always do 2for1 deals.

Lee Stafford Shine Head Shine Spray. Blonde hair doesn't reflect light the way brown hair does so a good shine spray is essential for getting luminous hair.

Lush Marilyn is a hair moisturiser you use before washing your hair. I can't say much for the claims of it lightening my hair as I haven't used it long enough, but it certainly made my hair feel extremely moisturised, perhaps even too moisturised. Use Sparingly!!

Kerastase Reflection Chroma Riche. My favourite of the bunch - smells heavenly, moisturises and makes hair look silky and luminous! When I first dyed my hair blonde it was so dry and brittle and this product was what saved it, and is now always in my bathroom cabinet.

Places you can find these products:


Where else you can find me:

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Happiness comes in the shape of a shirt

I've been looking for a sheer silky sleeveless shirt for the past couple of months and after much searching I finally found one in River Island. It has quickly become one of those tops that you live in till it's falling apart because you want to wear it everyday.

I believe it was around £26 which I think is pretty reasonable for something that is well made. Personally, I prefer to spend slightly more on clothes, because when I buy items from shops such as Primark I end up hating them within a few weeks or they fall apart in the wash. And, if you buy a top for £10 from Primark that you wear for a few weeks or a top for £26 from River Island that you wear for years, it's pretty obvious which turns out to be the better buy.

White shirt - River Island
Denim Shorts - Topshop
Nail polish - Barry M Neon Pink


Friday, 8 April 2011

Holiday Faves!!

Hi everyon! I've been in Gran Canaria for the past week which explains my lack of posts. I was hoping to get on a computer over there, but to be honest, I was worried about how safe it was putting my passwords in and uploading photos onto a random computer. Anyway, I'm back now and I've got a couple of things to share with you that I loved while I was away. First off I tried out a new polish to me, Neon Pink nail polish by Barry M. It's got a blue toned shimmer that runs through it and is literally the brightest nail polish I've ever owned. The only polish I have that is at all similar to it is Essie's Pink Parka which looks so flat in comparison. For the week I was away I also tried out Bourjois's Healthy Mix foundation and from day one I was hooked. It's so smooth and easy to apply that you can easily use your fingers. It also feels very light weight on your skin, but, gives enough coverage which is what most people look for in a foundation. And, the best thing about it is that it actually makes your skin look radiant!

The front of the bottle tells you all about the foundation, but, me being a bit of a wally photographed the side written in French, so I'll write below what it says:

Up to 16h - Perfectly glowing complexion & Toned skin

Fruit therapy - Radiance - boosting

Apricot - radiance

Melon - hydration

Apple - anti-oxidant

Ginger - energy

Hope you're all doing well. I can't wait to get back in the swing of blogging and making YouTube videos again!


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