24 Jun 2018

2018 Mid-Year Beauty Favourites



I know you've all probably heard this 100 many times, but how fast is the year going?! We are already halfway through - it's crazy! Anyway, to celebrate getting through half of 2018, I thought I'd share my mid-year beauty favourites that I've discovered so far.

The past few months have consisted of many skincare discoveries. I've been meaning to get into skincare a little more, take care of my skin and learn more about different products and ingredients, hence the increase in skincare favourites. I also have a few make up bits, which I will of course share with you too.

So settle down with a cup of tea, get comfortable as this post is rather long and chatty!

The Favourites 



Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish
I've always wanted to try Liz Earle products and early this year I finally bought some! The range was actually recommended to me by my wedding make up artist and I am so glad she did! The products were truly life-changing but the Cleanse and Polish was by far my favourite! I highly recommend if you are looking for a new cleanser.

Muslin Cloths
Swiftly moving on from the Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish, we have muslin cloths. I previously used a standard face towel for washing my face with but after discovering the muslin cloth, which came with the Cleanse and Polish, I will never go back! It is so gentle yet effective, I'm pretty sure it has magical powers.



No7 Stay Perfect Foundation
I went through / am still kind of going through a bit of a make up funk. As my skin got rather bad and I was focusing on skincare, make up became non-existent in my daily routine - which is a big change. However, on my good skin days, I really wanted to wear make up because I enjoy it from time to time. The No7 foundation helped give me a natural coverage and as it was so lightweight, it didn't feel like I had much on, which was perfect after not wearing make up for so long!

CYO Blush
I believe this brand is new to Boots and when I saw the products, I was intrigued. The are inexpensive yet the packaging is nice and sleek. I was drawn to this blusher in the shade XXXX straightaway and knew I would love it. It is a beautiful natural pinky berry shade which works so well for everyday looks.



Yes To Blueberries Body Wash
If you read this blog post, you'd know I really enjoy this product. The range is fab, but this body wash is amazing. The scent is heavenly and I highly recommend if you are after a new body wash because this one has it all - natural, smells fab and isn't so expensive!

Botanics Hydration Burst Day Cream
I came across this brand and was pleasantly surprised by the range of products they had available. As you can probably tell, I've been trying more natural products and this brand is no exception. I thought I'd start simple and purchase a day cream, which I really enjoy. I definitely want to try more products from the brand, which I'll introduce slowly into my routine.



Simple Eye Cream
I remember I never used to see the point in eye cream but since having a skin flare up with extremely dry flaky skin everywhere on my face, including around my eyes, I realised the important of applying something more targeted in that area. This one is cheap, cheerful and does the job - when something ticks those boxes, I don't see the point in looking elsewhere.

Mario Badescu Enzyme Revitalising Face Mask
I remember seeing so much about this brand a few years ago - there was a huuuuge craze. I now see the point! I was after a mask that was good for dry skin but wasn't going to be too harsh and at first, the sound of this mask was a bit intimidating (the enzyme element scared me a little!) but I actually really enjoy it. it eats away at dead skin and does not dry it out at all.



Milani Lash Trifecta Mascara
Mascara's are something that I change out very often and don't really repurchase because good ones are really easy to come by. I like to try different ones each time and I picked up this one by chance when I was shopping one day and I'm actually considering repurchasing since I loved it so much. It lengthens and thickens and again, is inexpensive.

The Ordinary 100% Plant Derived Squalane 
Think I was saving my best beauty discoveries till last - The Ordinary is a brand that took the beauty world by storm and very rightly so. I actually popped into The Ordinary store a few months back and I felt like I was in heaven. This product is basically a non-greasy oil that sorted my skin out and helped calm all the chaos that was happening.

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5
This product is a cult beauty product because I know so many people enjoy it, including my sister. It is basically a like pre-moisturiser. I put this on after cleansing but before moisturiser as it is meant to help more of the product soak into your skin, maximising hydration.



And those are my mid-year beauty favourites - Congratulations on making it this far, I know this was a rather rambley post (hence the pre-warning!



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Have you tried any of these products?

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17 Jun 2018

Packing Tips: Travel Make Up & Skincare



I'm off on my travels today (you can follow what I'm up to on my Instagram!) so I thought it would be appropriate to share how I pack my travel beauty bags for make up and skincare. I find that packing for travelling can be difficult - however long you are going for, wherever you are going, even if it is just a weekend away!

Anyway, I thought I'd share my thought process for organising yourself when it comes to packing skincare and make up for holidays.



Carry-on or check-in luggage?

Knowing which of these options you are taking helps manage the rest of the organising for packing. It's quite simple actually, if you are only taking hand luggage you require less make up and beauty wise due to airplane restrictions. If you are allowed check-in luggage, you can take however much you like, really.



The length of your trip

The longer you travel for, you essentially need more products. Shorter periods of time mean that you can get away with not bringing a bits and only having the bare essentials on you. Make sure you prepare for however long you will be travelling for. Bigger luggage, more storage bags, whatever you need to accommodate your beauty bits!



Make lists

I love making lists, especially when it comes to travelling. I'd suggest making a list on a piece of paper or on your phone (the iPhone notes feature is fab). Go through your make up and skincare routine step-by-step, decide what you will be taking and pop it on the list. This will help you not miss anything out.



Travel minis and decanting

If you are travelling for a few days, it's always best to buy minis of the products you will be taking - I prefer this for shampoo and conditioner! Or if a mini is unavailable, and most of the time too expensive, just decant the product into a separate tub. You get travel kits in Primark, Boots and Superdrug so it's easy to pop some skincare into a mini tub or even your foundation and primer.



Live out of your travel bags for a few days

I always worry that I've forgotten something important when it comes to travelling. To avoid this, I think you should pack your skincare or makeup bag a few days before and use it as you would on holiday, but at home. This way when you are going about your daily routine, you can easily pick up on whether you have missed something out.


There you have it - a few tips and tricks for packing make up and skincare for your travel. Are you off anywhere exciting soon?
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3 Jun 2018

Travel Guide: New York City



For our honeymoon, the Mr and I went to the big apple! New York is a city I've visited before and I absolutely loved. There is just SO much to see and do and eat! We both really enjoyed the trip and are glad that we decided to do something a little bit unconventional - compared to the Maldives or Bora Bora.

I thought I'd share what we got up to, where we ate, where we stayed and everything else!





HOTEL

We wanted to stay somewhere central so we could easily get to all the places we wanted to go. We were only in New York for 4 days so every minute was crucial! My husband and I booked the Hyatt Centric Hotel which is in Times Square. Despite being in the busiest part of the city, it wasn't loud or too small - the room was a decent size and was very nicely decorated. I definitely recommend if you are looking for a hotel in the heart of NYC.





EAT

There were so many yummy places we ate at during our trip. We particularly enjoyed the street carts that were basically on every corner. I really loved the falafel gyros - if you love falafels then I highly recommend trying them from the food carts in NYC because they are cheap but so incredibly delicious.

When we weren't trying all of the food carts, we actually ate in restaurants...

We tried the ever so famous Salt Bae's restaurant, Nusr-Et Steakhouse - which I actually didn't take any pictures of as we went on our last night and wanted to enjoy the experience! I must say the experience is phenomenal. The atmosphere is just something else and really made our trip!

We tried the place the apparently sells the number 1 pizzas in the USA, Juliana's. The half an hour long line was definitely worth the wait.We shared a mozzarella and tomato pizza and it was heavenly. I'm going to admit, I never used to like pizza until we tried this place (that is how good it was!).



We had more pizza and Italian deliciousness when we visited Eataly. As the portions are rather large, myself and my husband shared a stone baked pizza which had roasted vegetables and a lot of cheese - mmmm. I definitely recommend this place if you are after something with more of a restaurant vibe, similar to our Zizzi and Pizza Express.



If you fancy some really delicious thai food, One Thai Chef is the place to go. It's literally just a ten minute walk from Times Square, so easily walkable from our hotel. Dishes we recommend: chicken pad thai, golden coconut fried shrimps and chicken satay.


SIGHTSEEING





Helicopter Tour
As we were only in New York for a short space of time, we decided it would be best to go on a helicopter tour so we can see everything in a speedy 30 minutes. A helicopter tour has always been on my bucket list and honestly, it didn't disappoint. It was the most amazing experience and by far my favourite part of the honeymoon. We booked the tour with HeliNY, if you are looking to book too!



Staten Island Ferry
We wanted to see the Statue of Liberty from a closer view and instead of booking a really expensive tour, we decided to hop on the free Staten Island Ferry, especially since we were close by to the helicopter port anyway. I highly recommend going on this instead of paying £££ for a Statue of Liberty tour.





Central Park
You obviously have to go to Central Park if you are visiting New York. We took a little stroll around a portion of the park and engaged some fresh roasted cashews - yum! Unfortunately the lake and boating area wasn't open when we visited as it was rather cold but that is next on my to-do list if we visit in the summer!





Times Square
The atmosphere at Times Square is just something else. The iconic screens and huge Mcdonalds is literally as you see in the movies. There are plenty of shops and places to go whilst you are in Times Square so shopping and entertainment won't be of a shortage!





Brooklyn Bridge
If you have a good 45 minutes to spare, take a walk on the Brooklyn Bridge. We decided to go from Manhattan to Brooklyn so we could stop by Juliana's for pizza at the end! The walk across the bridge is filled with amazing views and even more amazing photos!

Woodbury Common Shopping Outlet
For shopping, we took a day trip to Woodbury Common Shopping Outlet. We booked a bus directly from the concierge at the hotel and it took about an hour and thirty minutes to get there. The shopping outlet is insane! Think of Bicester Village and think 10 times larger than that. There was a huge food court and every shop imaginable. It's definitely a spot where you must visit if you are looking to shop.



Friends Apartment Building
If you are a Friend's fan, you have to go to the iconic building. It is literally just a building but it's a new area to walk around in too. Here is the address if you are looking to go the corner of Bedford Street and Grove Street.







Other spots to visit: 5th Avenue, Top of the Rock, Flat iron Building, Ground Zero, The Oculus, Grand Central Station and Madison Square Gardens.


TRAVEL

Travel wise, we bought Metro cards from the nearest subway station and travelled around like the locals do. Using the subway was rather easy except when every sub station looks the same and you keep going round in circles! There is also a subway app that you can download if you need a little help with stations.





And there you have it, my NYC travel guide! Have you been to New York? What are your favourite spots that I've missed?
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