SOCIAL MEDIA

What I've Been Watching & Listening To Lately

Friday, 24 May 2019

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I haven't done one these posts for a while and I've definitely been watching a fair few things that I just need to talk about. I've also been listening to some new music as well as some old faves too which I thought I would share too. I've decided I'm going to skip out on the whole "reading section" of this post because I'm half way through two books right now and I'm still unsure how I feel about both of them, so maybe I'll talk about them in my next post.

First up I've got to talk about Derry Girls which is literally one of the funniest things on TV. I binge watched the first season last summer one night when I couldn't sleep. It's set in the 1990's in Derry (obvs) and it follows Erin, her cousin Orla and their three friends Clare, Michelle and Michelle's English cousin James. They attend a Catholic all girls school where you'll often find Sister Michael who basically doesn't give a crap about the students and has broad, sarcastic opinions about everything. Which is probably why she's one of my fave characters in the show lol. It follows the gang through both the good and bad experiences of teenage life and and I just highly recommend it if you fancy watching a show that will literally make you laugh out loud.

This is kind of bittersweet but I've been watching the final season of Jane The Virgin which has made me cry multiple times already because of *that* character returning (you'll know who I mean if you watch the show). I'm so gutted that Jane The Virgin is ending this season but I'm also looking forward to seeing how it ends and hopefully it will all work out for Jane in the end. If you're not familiar of the show then it's on Netflix (in the UK) and it's about Jane who is a devout Catholic and virgin at the age of 23. She has promised her grandmother that she will remain a virgin until she is married - hopefully to her Detective boyfriend Michael. However whilst at a routine check up at her gynaecologist she's accidentally artificially inseminated which obviously throws her life into chaos. To make matters even worse the baby's father is no other than her boss at the hotel where Jane works. It's a very dramatic OTT show but it's so funny and but it can also be quite sad too.

Dead to Me seems to have been the talk of twitter a few weeks ago when it arrived on Netflix and oh my god what a good show! It's a dark comedy and mainly follows Jen Harding whose husband has recently been killed by a hit and run driver. Jen is obviously still completely thrown off by the fact her husband is dead but she tries not to show that she's still in bits in front of their two kids - Charlie and Henry. She attends a support group for the first time for widows and people who have experienced loss which is where she meets Judy. Judy comes across as a very friendly woman who has also experienced a loss. They both become close friends in a short space of time but all is not what it seems with both of them. They've both got big secrets and there's a lot of twists of turns throughout the whole show. The episodes aren't super long either so you can easily get through the show if you're not a big fan of binge watching TV shows. 

The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is another show which I enjoyed watching last month. I watched Part 1 when it was released last year. If you think it's anything like the original Sabrina the Teenage Witch then you're wrong. It's a lot darker and more horror story-like instead. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next in Part 3! I don't really want to say much else because I don't want to spoil it for anyone who hasn't watched it yet.

Another TV show that I've just started watching is The Spanish Princess. I watched The White Princess a few years ago which was about Henry VII and Elizabeth of York and then it's followed onto the next generation but the new series The Spanish Princess is about Catherine of Aragon who we all know was Henry the VIII's first wife but I don't think we're really taught that much about the wife's of Henry the VIII as it's always more about his story and life in TV shows or films. The series is loosely based on what really happened in their life together as it is dramatised for TV purposes which I get, but it's pretty good. It's not as good as Reign or The Tudors but if you're into history and the Tudor Monarchy then you might like it. It's currently on STARZ Play which you can subscribe to on Amazon Prime (you get a 7 days free trial and then it's £4.99 per month onward).

For music I've mostly been listening to Foals new album Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost which I knew would be featured in my next "What I've Been Watching & Listening To Lately" post. Whenever they release a new album I basically become obsessed with it. I've been a fan of Foals since the very beginning and they are one of my fave bands. My favourite songs on the new album are - Cafe d'Athens, In Degrees, Sunday and On The Luna.

I came across BLOW on Spotify when the appeared on a random playlist and I've been listening to them quite a lot. I find their music really relaxing and easy to listen to but still has a good beat if that makes sense. If you do give them a listen then you'll probably know a few of the songs as they're used on adverts often including You Killed Me On The Moon and Don't Wait For Us.

I'm also a big fan of Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds latest song Black Star Dancing and Blossoms latest song I've Seen The Future. I can't wait to hear more new music from them both!

And lastly I've been listening to Cults who are a band I've liked for quite a few years now ever since I heard their song "Go Outside" on an episode of Gossip Girl. They popped up on my Spotify recently and you know when you remember a band who you haven't listened to for a while and become obsessed with their songs all over again? Well, that's what happened. I've been really enjoying listening to the songs Were Before, I Took Your Picture and Never Saw The Point. 

What have you been watching and listening to lately?


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My Thoughts On Glossier's Bubblewrap Eye + Lip Plumping Cream

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

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I thought I'd do a mini review of Glossier's latest release which is the "Bubblewrap" Eye + Lip Plumping Cream. I haven't done a stand alone Glossier review for a while and I just had to get my hands on this product when it was announced because now that I've turned 25 I've been feeling more worried about fine lines and wrinkles as I've already noticed I've started to get a few fine lines under and around my eyes which literally just makes me want to weep to be quite honest.

Glossier claim that their Bubblewrap product will moisturise, smooth, plump and increase the skin's ability to hold water. It contains the likes of hyaluronic acid, squalane, avocado oil, antioxidant-rich blueberry extract and a super lightweight texture. 

So what do I think of the product? Now that I've used Bubblewrap pretty much daily over the past two weeks I've got to say I really like it. I prefer to use it on my under eye area as opposed to my lips just because that's where I see more of a difference. It doesn't do anything for my dark under eye circles but then again, Glossier never claimed that it would do anything for those pesky dark under eyes anyway. However I can definitely see that it's does plump and hydrate the area. I've found that it mainly makes my under eyes look more refreshed and lifted which is always welcome because most of the time I look completely exhausted. For an ultimate eye care session (which literally contains two products) I use the Pixi DetoxifEYE Depuffing Eye Patches which I've found actually help to lift out some of the darkness under my eyes and then I pop on the Bubblewrap Cream. Now that I've found the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye Concealer which is definitely heavy duty, I'm not as worried about my dark circles anyway. But I do still use the two eye care products anyway just to refresh and hydrate the area. 

Although it does work in the same way for my lips and it does plump them up a little too, I've found that the product feels a bit weird on my lips. It kind of feels like I've put a mattifying moisturiser on my face and accidentally caught my lips and left it to settle. It's not a great feeling to be honest.

Overall I really like it as a eye cream but I don't like it for my lips. I'd rather use one of those tingly lip plumping gloss instead if I'm being totally honest. If you'd like to try the Bubblewrap Eye + Lip Plumping Cream for yourself or if you're planning a lil Glossier haul then use my link to get 10% off and free delivery! (affiliate). 

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A Spring/Summer Makeup Shakeup

Sunday, 19 May 2019

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-This post contains PR/gifted items, no paid content. All opinions are my own-
It's that time of the year when I switch up my makeup to more of a Spring/Summer ready look so I thought I would talk about what's made it into my current makeup bag and what products I'll be using and wearing a lot over the the upcoming months.

First up is obviously base products, now I know a lot of people like to go makeup free or foundation free in the Spring/Summer but because I have quite oily and acne prone skin, I like to make sure that I have some coverage to just make me feel more confident I guess. 

If I want a lighter coverage then I'll either just dab on some of my Barry M All Night Long Concealer which is my current fave drugstore concealer (I definitely prefer it over Collection Lasting Perfection!). Or I'll use my most recent foundation discovery which is the L'Oreal Nude Magique Cushion Foundation which is available from Fragrance Direct. It gives you a lovely skin-like finish but it feels like you're not wearing anything on your skin, which I really like. I do have to powder it down as it's very dewy for my skin type but I just love it. If I need a heavier coverage then I'll either opt for my old fave which is the Revlon ColourStay 24hr Foundation* or the It Cosmetics My Skin But Better CC Cream in the Matte version which I got for my birthday recently. I feel like I have a good selection of base products which all sit well on my skin, last a good amount of time and won't break the bank when I need to repurchase them.

If I feel like I need more coverage on either my under eyes or any blemishes then I'll go in with the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer which is a complete game changer. It does sound quite pricey for a concealer at £24 but you literally only need a teeny amount as it's quite thick and it really goes a long way.

I also recently picked up the new Barry M Brow Wand which has a angled brow pencil on one end and then a tinted brow gel on the other end. The angled pencil is quite chunky so it has been a little difficult to get the hang of but I've started to really like it and the tinted brow gel is great and keeps my brows in place for the day. I even sometimes just wear the tinted brow gel when I'm having a minimal makeup day.



I decided to buy the new mascara from The Body Shop a few weeks ago which is called Happy Go Lash Mascara. I'm not going to lie, I think the packaging is what drew me in the most because I mean, look at it! It's cute, right? But I also thought the brush looks very similar to the L'Oreal Paradise mascara which I bloody love. It is very similar but I feel like the Happy Go Lash gives more of a natural look and the L'Oreal Paradise looks a little more bolder. However I do still like the Happy Go Lash mascara and it's great for more of a minimal makeup day.



Talking of lashes I've also been using Lash Wizard Eyelash Serum from Flawless Cosmetics* which has definitely helped my lashes out and has given them a bit of a growth boost. It claims to start showing visible results after just 14 days of use but I definitely saw a change in my lashes within about a week. I tend to pop it on in the evening before bed so it can work it's magic on my lashes whilst I sleep. It's created with Biotinoyl Tripeptide which is responsible for strengthening eyelash fibres and follicles and it's also fragrance free, paraben free, cruelty-free and hormone free. The only one thing that I'm personally not a big fan of when it comes to lash growth serums is the eyeliner brush to apply it with just because I find it a bit fiddly to manoeuvre. So I've been using disposable mascara wands instead as I find that they work better. However I still would recommend giving it a try because I've definitely seen an improvement in my lashes. 
The Flower Beauty Lift & Sculpt Contour Palette is a gorgeous palette which I've started to use more lately. The highlighter is stunning and very glowy, the blush is quite a bold pink and is a little different to what 
I would usually wear so I do tend to apply it very lightly and the contour/bronzer is quite warm but I can just about get away with wearing it. Overall it's a great palette and I'm definitely planning on buying some more products from Flower Beauty soon. I kind of wish they'd release a more toned down version of the palette though.
Glossier Play Niteshine Highlighter in Pale Pearl is a newbie in my makeup bag. I wasn't totally blown away by the Glossier Play range when it first launched but then I saw Lucy Jane Wood's youtube video reviewing the range and I was impressed with how the highlighter and the vinylic lip lacquers looked so I decided to buy them for myself. You can read my full review of both of them 
here.

Lastly is lipstick and my current go-to lipstick is definitely the Zoella X Colourpop Ultra Matte Lip in Little One. It's literally what I would call a perfect nude shade and I love Colourpop's Ultra Matte Lip formula in general so it's a great combination. I also have the shade @ Me which is more of a pink-purple mauve shade but I don't wear it as much as I'm still not 100% if it suits me if I'm being totally honest. I've also been liking wearing Glossier's Generation G lipstick in Leo which is a brown-nude shade.

What are your go-to makeup products for the Spring/Summer?

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New In From Alpha H! The Clear Skin Blemish Control Mask

Saturday, 18 May 2019

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-This post contains a PR sample/gifted item, no paid content. All opinions are my own-
If you are a regular reader of my blog then you'll probably know how much I love skincare and the fact my skincare stash basically overtakes the cupboards in the bathroom. I just really like trying out new products and different brands on a regular basis. A brand that I've been meaning to try for a while is Alpha H because I've heard so many people rave about their products. So when I got the opportunity to try out their brand new Clear Skin Blemish Control Mask* I obviously said yes!

The Clear Skin Blemish Control Mask* is clay based (with White Clay) and contains all of the good stuff when it comes to clearing up your skin including - tea tree, eucalyptus and aloe vera. If you have a oilier skin type or spot prone like me then you'll know that those things are basically lifesavers. It aims to calm and reduce redness or inflammation and it can also be used as a spot treatment too. It has a very lightweight formula so you only need a thin layer for it to get to work. I personally really like that about it because it means it dries down quicker and it's also easier to remove. To remove you just massage the mask with wet fingers to soften and then remove with a warm damp face cloth/flannel.

I've found it to be a great quick fix kind of mask and I've used it both as a full face mask and also a spot treatment. Is it going to make your spots disappear overnight? No. But it definitely helps to reduce inflammation and redness and it works well on those horrible under the skin spots too. I've found that it helps to bring them up to the surface so you can get rid of them or sometimes they go back to wherever they've come from. The mask is priced at £23.95 (for 100ml) and is available to buy from Cult Beauty and Look Fantastic. 

Trying out the Clear Skin Blemish Control Mask has just made me want to try out products from Alpha H even more! Here are some products by them which have caught my eye. 



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Trying Out All-Natural Brand Beesline Apitherapy

Monday, 13 May 2019

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-This post contains PR/gifted items, no paid content. All opinions are my own-
Beesline Apitherapy are a natural cosmetics brand that use the ancient science of Apitherapy. Apitherapy is otherwise known as "bee therapy" and they use the Honey, Beeswax, Royal Jelly and Propolis and combine it with fresh botanical extracts to safely and effectively take care of your skin. Their products are all about moisturising, repairing and protecting the skin and are super affordable too. I've been trying out four products from them over the past few weeks and in today's post I'm sharing my thoughts on all of them. 

The Beesline Ointment Skin Balm priced at £9.99* is aimed at dry and rough skin types. It's a multi-purpose balm so you can use it for various different things. I've really been enjoying using multi-use balms lately as I mentioned in this post just last week. They're really handy to have on a day-to-day basis for both in the house and if you're travelling. The ointment balm can even relieve skin conditions such as eczema due to it's moisturising and antimicrobial properties, which I think is great for such an affordable product! I've been using this mainly on my hands, cuticles and also my heels. If you have a drier skin type then you could also use it as a face moisturiser too.


The Beesline Soft Beeswax Balm priced at £7.99* is an unscented multi-purpose balm which comes in a tin which makes it great for travelling and for popping in your bag. It's very similar to the Ointment Skin Balm but it's in a solid form instead instead of a tube but it's still very easy to use. With it being a multi-use balm it means you can use it for various different things and I've used it on my lips, cuticles and hair so far and it's great when you need some extra hydration urgently. I've been popping in it my bag often so I can use it when I'm out and about.

The Beesline Lip Balm priced at £3.99* is my current go-to lip balm, it packs a punch on the hydration front and it seems to last a good amount of time on my lips too. I also like that the packaging is bright yellow so then I can find it easier (I have a tendency to lose things very easily lol). 

And lastly is the Beesline Beeswax priced at Cold Cream £9.99* which I would probably say is my fave out of the four products I've been trying out. I think it's because it has a scent unlike the other products. The scent of the Cold Cream is Damask Rose which I really like in general anyway. It's aimed at dry and normal skin types and can be used on your face and body. I've been using it as a hand cream mainly, just because I really like the scent. Although I have an oilier skin type I have actually used the Cold Cream on my face. Because I have been using some foam face washes over the past couple of weeks to calm down my skin as it's been acting up and breaking out, I've been getting some dry patches - particularly around my nose. Unfortunately I find it's the down side of using foam based face products. So to hydrate and soothe the area I have been popping on some of the Cold Cream on the areas where it's dried out which has definitely helped to re-hydrate and soothe the areas. It also doesn't leave a horrible greasy feeling either which is fab. 

Beelines Apitherapy products are available to buy from Fragrance Direct

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Do You Have Trouble Falling Asleep Like Me? | Benenox Overnight Recharge Review

Saturday, 11 May 2019

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-This post contains PR/gifted items, no paid content. All opinions are my own-
Since I was a early teen I've had problems with sleeping and maintaining a good sleeping pattern. Obviously at that age your parents just blame it on being on your phone or watching TV late at night but it wasn't the case for me. Well, yeah to be fair, I did stay up late texting, updating my Bebo, Myspace and Facebook (what a throwback!) and also watching TV at night but I was doing that because I just couldn't get to sleep, so it was more of a distraction whilst I was struggling to get to sleep if that makes sense. I also found it hard to stay asleep all through the night when I finally did drop off too. So I was going into school most days on only a couple hours of sleep. Unfortunately, it's something which has just stuck. But now I feel like it's kind of an off/off kind of thing. Sometimes I sleep pretty well (not brilliantly but not too bad) and then sometimes I really struggle. Also since my chronic pain started last year, that's also played a big factor in me not being able to sleep because some nights the pain keeps me up even if I'm feeling completely shattered. 

Over the past month I've been going through a bit of a 'struggle' spell and I'm pretty sure some nights I must wake up 10-15 times during the night, if not more. I've also been having really vivid nightmares most nights too and sometimes more than one each night but I'm just blaming that on the fact that the past month or so has been super stressful because of various different reasons.

So when Benenox got in touch and asked if I would like to take part in their #IWentToBedLikeThis campaign, I obviously said yes! They sent me over two bottles of their Benenox Overnight Recharge* in the Blackcurrant flavour and the Lemon and Ginger flavour and also some snazzy banana print pyjamas from ASOS* which you probably will have seen on my insta feed or stories. The Overnight Recharge is made from a blend of honey which is known for it's health benefits and its mix of natural sugars which is believed to help boost glycogen stores in the liver to use during the night. It also contains Sustamine - a combination of two amino acids (L-Alanine and L-Glutamine) which can be absorbed quickly by the body and also Vitamin B6 - a vitamin which has been shown to help reduce tiredness and fatigue, support normal psychological function and help with energy production and It's suitable for vegetarians (however it's not suitable for children under 12 years of age). 

Each bottle comes with a little measuring cap on top of the bottle and you just pop 15ml in the cap and take it before bedtime. You can also dilute it with a small amount of hot water if preferred. 

My favourite out of the two is definitely the Lemon and Ginger flavour but that's just my personal preference. However I have been using both over the past couple of weeks and I still get the same results from both of them. So, talking of results, how have I been getting on using Benenox's Overnight Recharge? 

Well I've been making myself to go to bed earlier and "switching off" from everything earlier to try and get my mind to settle. Unfortunately this is the time when my anxiety likes to play up and I start overthinking about anything and everything. Although I've still been struggling to initially fall asleep, once I'm asleep I'm definitely staying asleep for a longer amount of time and I've actually slept completely through the night a few times too. I've also been feeling a lot more refreshed and "with it" when I wake up after using the Benenox Overnight Recharge* which really helps to put me in a better mindset for the day ahead. So I'm definitely going to continue to use it, especially when I'm really struggling with my sleep as I do think it works. It's basically like some sort of magic sleeping potion and if you struggle with sleeping and haven't tried Benenox's Overnight Recharge then I would say pick a bottle up and give it a try! 

You can get it from Boots for £9.99 (each).


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How I Do Self Care With A Chronic Illness *

Thursday, 9 May 2019

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-*This post is in collaboration with ThriveTalk, all opinions are my own. It also contains PR/gifted items-
 Some days I hate myself and I hate my body due to my chronic pain and I purposely don't give my body the self-care and rest it needs because I'm so annoyed (silly right?). Other days, I'm kinder to myself and stop kicking myself when I have to take a day off work, cancel plans and say no to a blogging opportunity etc. I'm trying to be kinder to myself as this is just me now and I have to accept that. I think anyone reading this with a chronic illness/chronic pain will understand where I am coming from. 

So how do I do self care when I'm basically crippled up in pain with my back or pelvic pain and can barely move from my bed and/or on days when I'm feeling really down in the dumps?

Catching up on sleep or or even allowing myself to have a cheeky nap in the afternoon if I really feel I need to works wonders most of the time. I've also found that using a self heating Space Masks eye masks* has been a complete game changer on nights when I'm struggling to sleep or even if I have a bad stress or hormonal headache. It is more of a luxury product but it does help.

I'm a big fan of using face masks in general and I prefer to use clay based masks usually just because they suit my oily skin the best. However on days when I'm feeling unwell or when I'm just feeling low but want a pick-me-up I tend to pop on a quick fix face mask like the Sanctuary Spa 1 Minute Daily Glow Face Mask, Pixi Glow-o2 Oxygen Mask or a sheet mask. I highly recommend Yes To and Oh K! for sheet masks btw. 

I've come to the conclusion that Multi Use Balms are such a good invention! My current fave is the Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream* and I always keep it either on top of my bedside table or somewhere in my bedside table drawers as I use it every single day. I've found it to be great to use as a lip balm, eye cream, hair balm and hair mask and it can also be used in more ways too. It contains Olive Oil, Bees Wax, Honey, Bee Pollen, Royal Jelly and Bee Propolis.

I really enjoy watching something funny and/or cheerful when I'm feeling rubbish. I'm currently rewatching Stella which is brilliant (starring Ruth Jones) and I'm watching the final season Jane the Virgin which always makes me laugh without fail. I also like to listen to happy, sing along kind of songs too just to try and perk me up.

I've found that having a warm bath filled with Epsom salts or Pink Himalayan bath salts has really been helping to calm my pain when it first starts to flare up bad. I obviously like to use some Lush products including their shower gels and bath bombs too. 


-L-R from top to bottom: Strike a Posie, Follow The Petals, I Feel Flower-ful
Gardenia My Heart, Merci Bouquet, Young, Wild and Free-sia-
-Wearing the shade Merci Bouquet*-
 I know it may sound silly but sometimes just painting my nails a pretty colour just makes me feel like I have my life together (when I really don't lol). I've been really enjoying Morgan Taylor's Spring Collection nail polishes* as they are literally my perfect kind of shades as I love a pastel or nude colour on my nails. I'm not too keen on super bold shades as I just don't think they suit me. The Morgan Taylor polishes apply so easily and they stay on well too. I also love the names of the shades - Strike a Posie, Follow The Petals, I Feel Flower-ful, Gardenia My Heart, Merci Bouquet, Young, Wild and Free-sia (see above photos for reference).

I don't want to sound horrible but sometimes talking to my family or friends on either the phone or via text is the last thing I need when I'm in a lot of pain or feeling low. It kind of drains my energy even more. However I know they are always there for me if I do need or want to reach out and have a chat or just to tell them how I'm feeling. I've got a good bunch of people around me who I know I can rely on and the past year has really shown who is really there for me no matter what and who isn't. I've also reconnected with some old friends over the past year too which has been nice.

Getting out of the house in general is quite hard for me. It's not that I don't want to make plans or go out shopping and etc. It's because I don't know how I'm going to be feeling from one minute to the next as my pain can just come on strong and that's it, I'm pretty much on the floor in agony. Thankfully I find CBD oil and balms help to take the edge off the pain most of the time. But I definitely have the fear of flaring up in the middle of a supermarket or shop and having a crowd of people around me wondering what's going on and that really plays on my mind even when I'm having a better day. But if I feel like getting out of the house then I will try to. Sometimes even just having a little walk down my garden and back up again is a good way to clear my mind and to get some fresh air if I've been stuck in the house for a few days.

Haley Neidich, LCSW is a licensed clinical social worker and the clinical director of ThriveTalk.com and has some great tips and advice on doing self care when you have a chronic illness.

She says "It's easy for mental health and wellness professionals to preach about self-care, but self-care takes real devotion and the underlying ability to care for, nurture and honour yourself. When you're dealing with a chronic illness, self-care looks much different. Self-care with a chronic illness is honouring where you are and what you're capable of on any given day and being very patient and kind with yourself on the days where you have less to give. In practice, self care can be as simple as closing your eyes for one deep breath, peering out the window to really soak in the view, listening to a great song that takes you away or having a morning journalling practice. One of the greatest gifts that those suffering from chronic illness can give themselves is the space to talk about their feelings. Talking to an online counselor is a great option for those you might be short on energy but nee the support." 


How do you do self-care and what ways work best for you?

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Summer Beauty Picks From Fragrance Direct

Tuesday, 7 May 2019

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-This post contains gifted/PR samples, no paid content. All opinions are my own-
I know some people may think that this post is a little premature as it's not officially Summer until the end of June but believe me, it will soon be here! In this post I'm talking about what beauty products I think you need in your life this summer and why. All products linked in this post are available from Fragrance Direct.

I know a lot of people don't like to wear any foundation during the summer as it sometimes feels like it's basically melting off your face. Because I have quite oily and acne prone skin, I feel better when I'm wearing some sort of coverage as it just gives me a bit of a confidence booster knowing my imperfections are hidden. However if my skin isn't too bad then I will opt for no foundation or just a dab of concealer instead. But for this upcoming summer I've found the perfect foundation for when I want to wear a lightweight product which gives a nice amount of coverage. The product I'm talking about is the L'Oreal Nude Magique Cushion Foundation which I picked up recently. It comes in a little compact with a mirror and a cushion-like sponge to apply it with. I would say it gives a light to medium coverage and it gives a lovely skin-like finish. However it is very dewy so I do have to powder it down to keep it in place on my oily skin but for £4.25 it's a complete steal! 

If I want or need a medium-full coverage that I know won't budge in the summer sun then my go-to affordable foundation is definitely Revlon 24hrs Colorstay Normal/Dry Skin Foundation* (in the shade Buff). It's been a fave of mine for quite a few years now and it really does stick to my skin like glue but it still feels comfortable to wear all day whatever the weather. In other shops both online and in-store it retails around £12.99 but it's only £6.95 on Fragrance Direct. 

My go to brands for mascara are definitely L'Oreal and also Maybelline (I'm also a big fan of the Glossier Lash Slick for more of a natural look too). The Maybelline "The Falsies" Push Up Drama Mascara priced at £3.99* has a plastic straight, spiky brush which you can really work in to give you some lush fluttery lashes with no clumps whatsoever! I'm also a fan of the red packaging as it's easy to find at the bottom of my makeup bag lol.

I've started to wear normal nail polish again instead of gel nails just because it's less of a faff. I've been really enjoying the brands Morgan Taylor, Barry M and Essie for my nails. I chose the Essie Nail Polish in Sunny Daze 557 priced at £2.75* to feature in this post because it's such a pretty eye-catching colour. I would describe it as a shimmery, golden sunset shade. 


I would definitely say that Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream which price starts from £35.99* is a perfect Spring/Summer perfume to wear day-to-day. It's fresh and floral with Top Notes of: Blackberry, Pear and Grapefruit, Heart Notes of: Jasmine, Lychee and Blue Wisteria and Base Notes of: White Wood, Coconut Water and Musk. I haven't tried all of Marc Jacobs perfumes but out of the ones I've tried so far Daisy Dream is my fave with Divine Decadence being a very close second. To top it all off the bottle design is stunning and it looks lovely sitting on your dressing table. I just think it makes a great scent for the warmer months and it would also make a great gift for someone who likes a floral based perfume.



And lastly I've got to talk about the Ellie Saab Girl of Now Forever* perfume which price starts from £35.95. It's very fruity but with kind of a mysterious undertone if that makes sense. I think it's a great perfume to wear for both day and night. I also find that the longer you wear it, the sweeter the scent gets (but not in a sickly way!). The scent is described as a delicious note of Citrus Zest, Raspberry and Sparkling Rose, textured with addictive Orange Flower and Patchouli. I'm a big fan of anything with Orange Flower and/or Patchouli which is probably why I love it so much. Also, I think the bottle design is probably one of the most prettiest perfume bottles I've seen in a while (P.S It also looks cute in blog photos too). 

What are your Summer Beauty Picks? 


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7 Steps To Help Increase Your Blog Traffic

Sunday, 5 May 2019

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I've decided I'm going to talk about blogging more often on my blog and what tips and tricks I've found have worked best for me personally. I do sometimes get DM's on instagram and twitter asking about certain things so I thought I'd answer some questions and other blog related things in some posts. I'm no expert and although I'm self-employed through my blog, I don't make a huge fortune every month and it's very hit and miss. But I can get by on the money I make and it's also super helpful for me because when my chronic pain is bad, I can just take the day off if it's needed. It's definitely got it's pros and cons though, which is something else I shall be writing about soon. But in this post I'm talking about how to increase your blog traffic and how to get more people interacting with your blog posts too. 

Schedule posts daily via Buffer
So you don't have to use Buffer but I find that personally that's the easiest one to use. I did try Tweetdeck but I found it a bit confusing. I find the best way to get more views is by scheduling posts to your twitter feed! I tend to aim to schedule 4 posts every day (or every other day). I schedule my latest post first usually at 10.30am and then I post two others in the afternoon and evening and then my latest post again at around 9.30pm. I find that works the best and I can definitely tell when I've scheduled blog posts onto my twitter feed as I get so many more views.

Tag RT accounts into your scheduled tweets
Some RT accounts are little hit and miss but my favourite accounts to tag are @sotonbloggers, #TeacupClub and @UKBloggers1 and I also use hashtags like #bbloggers #lbloggers and etc. Do NOT use the #bloggerswanted tag because that just pisses off everyone who is trying to look for opportunities and it's just super annoying tbh. Also just a cheeky plug but if you do happen to be looking for some blog/insta opportunities then follow my @BloggerOppsxo account. I try and post every other day or so with the latest opportunities.

Don't forget to use Instagram to promote your latest blog posts too!
When I have a new blog post I either post on my grid to say what my latest post is about or I'll share it on my insta stories and say that the link is in my bio. I also sometimes do a sneak peek kind of post on my stories of what's coming up on my blog too.

Ask your readers what they want to see on your blog via twitter
You could also use the insta polls but I find more people answer the polls on twitter because it's anonymous and I think people are scared to offend you if they openly say they want to see more beauty related posts as opposed to fashion. But this is a good way to find out what people really love to read on your blog and what topics people aren't so bothered about reading.

Post regularly on your blog 
I know this is hard to do if you're in full time employment/education or if you just have a super busy lifestyle but I'd just say try and post as much as you can as it gets more people interested in reading your blog and also following you on social media (if you share you posts via buffer and use the tags). A little tip - don't have scheduled blog upload days! I used to do this when I first started out blogging and it used to put so much pressure on me to make sure I upload a post and to be honest because I was so stressed with posting at certain time on a certain day my content was really rubbish because I was rushing writing it.

Get people's attention with a catchy and enticing title
This is something I've been trying to do more over the past year as I find that if I just say for example "Proto-Col Intense Protection Day Moisturiser Review" then it's a bit bland and boring and I don't get as many views or comments. So instead I used "Why you Need Proto-Col's Intense Protection Day Moisturiser SPF50+ In Your Life" instead. It grabs your attention and makes you think "Ooo, why do I need it in my life?", right?

Up your photography game or change it up a little
You may have noticed on my instagram that I've changed up my photos a little recently just because I was a little bored of what I was producing and I felt it was all really repetitive. It still is a little repetitive but I'm planning on getting some more props soon and I'm also planning to start taking photos in different places around the house too. But I think upping your photography game really helps - whether if it's buying a new camera, picking up some wallpaper samples for a background at your local B&Q,The Range or B&M or buying new props, buying some soft box lights and so on then it can make a big difference. I'm going to be doing an updated blog post about blog and insta photos and blog props really soon!

Hope you enjoyed reading this post! If you have any tips then leave them below in the comments x 

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How To Make Your Rented Apartment Feel Like Home *

Saturday, 4 May 2019

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-*This post is in collaboration with RW Invest-


Have you just moved into your flat and want to start decorating? The issue with renting is that you are sometimes limited when making any changes, although this depends on your landlord. If you’re unsure about decor changes, you should take a look at your tenancy agreement to see what you can and can’t do.

You may find that you are one of the many tenants that cannot make massive changes. However, there are several things you can do which will make your rented apartment feel like home. Read these top tips which will help you transform your space.

Update furniture
If your flat is unfurnished, your landlord will give you more leeway when decorating the property, which means you can pick the furniture you want. However, there is an advantage of having furnished apartments like those available at RW Invest, which feature beautiful contemporary furnishings that will make you feel right at home.

Some tenants in furnished apartments aren’t so lucky, but there is a way around this by talking to your landlord about upcycling the furniture. For example, you could ask about painting a cupboard to add a pop of colour into a plain-looking bedroom. You could also add some colourful cushions or a throw to a drab sofa to enhance your living room.

Go green
Another great way to enhance your rented flat is by adding indoor plants, which will introduce natural light into your home, making it appear more spacious and open. When choosing plants, you should choose either artificial or long-lasting plants, such as Ivy, Spider plants, Cacti or Aloe Vera which are extremely low-maintenance.

Flowers can be placed anywhere in your home, including the kitchen, bathroom and on any window ledges. This is the perfect addition to any home, especially an apartment without a garden, as using plants allows you to create a botanical feel, even if you’re in a top floor apartment.

Hang art
Adding art in your home is essential, as it makes it more personal and stops your apartment from looking like a show home. However, before you purchase any wall art, you should check with your landlord about their wall hanging policy. If they don’t permit anything being hung on the wall, you should opt for standing framed art, which is the perfect decoration for your coffee table.

The main reason why your landlord will not allow you to hang things in your room is that it will leave a hole in your wall. However, there is plenty of way around this, such as using removable wall hooks, which can be used to hang any piece of art of your choice. By using this little tool, you will keep your landlord happy by avoiding any damage to the walls.

Collect rugs
Most rented properties will fit some type of wooden floor instead of carpet, as the latter is more likely to stain. While this may be suitable for some people, a lot of tenants prefer carpet, as it makes a home appear more comfortable and warmer. Some tenants may also have children, in which case carpets are preferred in the event of trips or falls.

To solve this issue, you should consider purchasing a rug or two, which will not only create a safe and warm home but will also enhance even the dullest decor. You can choose either small or large rugs dependant on the size of the room, although, for large rugs, you should take a look at sites like eBay or look in charity shops where you can find some great bargain rugs.

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Discovering The Scentaddict Subscription Service By The Fragrance Shop

Friday, 3 May 2019

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As I've mentioned before on my blog, I'm a bit of a perfume hoarder. However I do make sure I go through my perfumes every couple of months and pass on any I haven't reached for in a while to family and friends though. So they've definitely got a good deal going on lol. In today's post I'm talking about The Fragrance Shop's perfume subscription service called Scentaddict. They describe it as the new way to discover fragrances and you can choose from 
over 300 different scents from 50 of the biggest brands from Viktor & Rolf, YSL, Marc Jacobs, Gucci, Prada and many, many more. There's a mixture of both aftershaves and perfumes to choose from too.

It's super simple to set up and use! You just browse the ranges of designer scents (you can add up to 12 on your account) and once you've found the perfect mix for yourself, they'll start sending you one sample fragrance of your choice each month for £12 per month. In your first box you get 8ml travel sized scentaddict atomiser complete with The Fragrance Shop quality guarantee and then each month The Fragrance Shop shall send you out a new refill of a different perfume/aftershave which you've added to your account.





For my first month I received Kenzo World EDT* which at full price is £54.50 for the 50ml. It's described as "an amazing accord between sparkling pear, luminous peony and almond blossom and feminine orris". It's very fruity but also floral scented which I personally like and I feel like it's a great Spring to Summer kind of scent. It doesn't last all day but with the atomiser being travel size it doesn't really bother me as I can just pop it into my bag when I'm out and about. Overall I think it's a great way to save some money and properly try out a perfume before splashing out and buying the full size. It could also be a nice, unique gift idea for someone. Especially if you know what scents they like or if any certain perfumes which are available to add to your subscription hold a special place in someone's heart or remind them of a certain memory.


Have you heard of or tried Scentaddict before?
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10 Top Tips for Preparing Your Home & Garden for Summer *

Thursday, 2 May 2019

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-*This post is in collaboration with Lawsons-
At least once in our lives we will all take a look around our home and realise it’s a little tired, shabby and in need of some TLC. The change in light during the spring months really accentuates things like dusty blinds, worn carpets or chipped paint, making it the perfect opportunity to do some DIY. It’s not just inside, though. The winter months are often unkind to our gardens, leaving us with a few repair jobs to do in time for summer. Below are my top 10 tips for preparing your home and garden for summer, so that you can enjoy BBQ season with no worries.

Inside

  1. Clean your windows with the traditional mixture of warm water and vinegar. This will ensure that when the sun shines through during summer, you won’t have to look at dirty finger prints and smears.
  2. Give your walls and doors a fresh lick of paint to brighten the place up. Yellow-ish coloured skirting boards can make your rooms look unclean and tired.
  3. You could even install new internal doors if your budget allows for it. It’s easier than you think to install a new door and really makes all the difference.
  4. Considering you’re likely to have your windows open quite often during summer (providing we have decent weather), you might want to think about installing a wireless intruder alarm. They’re also handy if you’re planning to go on holiday for a couple of weeks and will therefore leave your house empty.
  5. Invite summer indoors by placing lots of lovely, vibrant plants and flowers around your home. You could even start a little herb garden in the kitchen and grow some of your own cooking ingredients.

Outside


  1. Pressure wash your patio or decking to remove any dirt and debris that may have built up, such as bird poo or moss.
  2. Declutter your shed so that you can easily access all of your gardening tools.
  3. Tidy up your fence by giving it a wash and a lick of paint if necessary. You might even have to replace some of the panels if they have been damaged by winter weather.
  4. Install outdoor lighting so that you can dine alfresco and host lots of garden parties long after the sun has gone down. Lighting outside will also help deter criminals from your property, which is an added bonus!
  5. Clean your garden furniture, which may have become cobwebbed and dusty if you’ve had it stored for winter, or dirty if you’ve left it outside. Nice, clean garden furniture will encourage you to go outside when the sun is shining because you’ll have somewhere pleasant to sit.  

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