At the minute, I really need a “it’s cold & I need cheering up” pamper sesh.
After a long week, I tend to have a long bath on a Saturday morning, wash my hair, re-do my nails, get rid of ALL the unwanted body hair from top to toe and give myself an all over cleanse, scrub & moisturise to within an inch of my life.
I start by taking off my grubby, chipped nail varnish on my hands and feet, brush out any knots in my hair and jump in the bath & watch the morning cooking shows for around an hour. In the bath, I exfoliate my whole body and shave shave shave (not that any skin is on show now that it’s so cold but it makes me feel half decent).
Once I’m out of the bath, I wash my hair over the bath once all the water has drained away. I double wash it then leave the conditioner on whilst I sort my face. I tie my hair in a bun and use the Clinique Take the Day Off cleanser (new found love, utterly obsessed, post to come). I quickly wipe a cotton pad soaked with Pixi Glow Tonic over my face then I rinse the conditioner out of my hair before moisturising my face with the No.7 Protect and Perfect day cream. This is really hydrating, which I need during the colder months but it doesn’t leave my skin with an oily sheen on it, perfect!
The next step is to slather on as much body moisturiser as I can from head to toe. I use Soap and Glory’s Righteous Butter all over, it smells glorious! I then roughly dry my hair with a hair dryer, tie it back up before starting on my nails.
I usually don’t use a specific hand cream and just moisturise my hands with the body moisturiser I have left on them. I then file my nails just to tidy up the edges & pick a nail colour. I don’t think dark nail varnish colours suit me so even though it’s Autumn, I’m still going to use this dusky pale pink shade from Avon.
Once my nails have dried, I let my hair air dry and put on some lip balm, and that’s it, job done!
Recently I’ve been in a bit of a slump and everything has seemed like a mammoth task. I’m putting it down to post graduation blues & the fact that I’ve started drinking coffee regularly (not good Meg, not good).
Because of this, I’ve been putting a lot of motivational tips and tricks into practise to give me a helping hand. I wanted to write a condensed list of everything that has worked for me over the past month or so so here ya go, I hope it helps some of you too!
Change your location – I don’t mean drastically up-rooting and heading on the first flight to Amsterdam (we can dream) but whether you’re at home writing an essay, sitting in the same spot to have lunch everyday, or struggling for blog post motivation, I found that just having a change of location really helps. It could be moving from the sofa to the dining table, or your desk to the garden or if you usually work in the house, get out and sit in a quiet corner of your fave cafe. Have lunch in the park, eat diner at the table instead of the sofa-lap combo – believe me, it really gives you a boost.
Buy a new top – nothing gives me a boost quite like a new top (or jacket, or shoes). It adds a whole new lease of live to my daily enthusiasm and makes me feel like I can do anything, making me 10 x more productive – WIN!
Have a bath – shave your legs, wash your hair, exfoliate, slather yourself in body lotion and you will feel like a whole new person ready to take on anything.
Lists, lists lists – write a list of lists you need to write, write a to-do list, a shopping list, a list of things that makes you happy, a list of people to send a little card to – whenever I feel a bit down and lacking in motivation writing a good list in a cute notepad with a nice inky pen works wonders (*even if I don’t do half the things on it ehe).
I’ve never compiled all of my lipsticks together and properly looked through them until now & it’s made me realise that, for someone who doesn’t like purple-y toned, dark lip colours, I have too many, and for someone who loves cool toned peach and nude colours, I don’t have enough.
Besides that, here is every lipstick I own – rummaged from the bottom of handbags, coat pockets and dug out from the bottom of my make-up drawer, because as I mentioned in my last post, I only ever really wear NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Stockholm and boy do I have enough of them hanging around.
I thought I would take you through the make up products that I’m using everyday at the minute because there are a few all-new, all-incredible bits in there as well as some old fave’s.
Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation in 103 true ivory for an all over dewy medium coverage
Bourjois concealer for spots & redness
Rimmel Wake Me Up concealer for under my eyes
[I apply all of the liquid base products with the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge]
Benefit Dandelion powder blush using a small-ish angled brush
An old Collection conotour & highlight duo for contour & bronze. I use a NARS kabuki brush to buff in some pretend cheek bones, then use a bigger fluffier brush and blend it in and take it down my neck.
Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder. This is my most recent purchase and I think it’s going to last a lifetime. It perfectly reduces shine and has an almost light reflecting glow to it. I am OBSESSED. I apply this with a small, fluffy brush just in the areas I need it like under my eyes to set my concealer, my chin, nose and forehead.
L’Oreal Paris Brow Artists Genius Kit in Medium-Dark which I apply with the Benefit angled brush.
Avon Big & Daring Volume Mascara. I love the long, natural brush on this mascara. It hardly clumps and it’s really buildable.
Naked Basics Palette by Urban Decay [Blow, Nude & Extra Bitter] all over the lid & in the crease with a big fluffy brush OR I sometimes use the L’Oreal Paris Color Riche La Palette Eyeshadow in Nude Rose for an easier, more natural eye colour.
Then I pretty much wear the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Cannes every.single.day. I need to shake it up but it is just so perfect! I’ve got at least 7 lying around the house.
& that’s it. I don’t do all of this every day…somedays I’ll just wear concealer and mascara with lip balm.
Brighton has always been one of those places that I knew I would love even having never been there. Something do to with the mixture of city life, sea and CUTE shops I imagine. A little while ago, myself, Tom & his family made the 5 hour treck from Cardiff to Brighton for a weekend away. We got a perfect AirBnB right by the sea and spent the weekend eating & exploring.
To keep it concise, here are my 5 favourite things about Brighton:
Lydea’s – Brighton is the best place for vegan & veggie cafe’s and Lydea’s was my fave by far. It’s located in the North Laine and has a very relaxed, cafeteria feel to it. You grab a tray and pick what you want from behind the counter and we sat outside on a wooden picnic bench. The food was UNREAL & I would highly highly recommend going there.
The Sea – Coming from a seaside town & now living in a city, any time I get a waft of sea air and I can hear the waves, I immediately feel at home. The sea is a definite selling point for Brighton, as well as the glorious sunsets and it would definitely be a reason for me to move there.
Interior Shops – I could have spent an absolute fortune in these shops, so it’s a good job I was at the bottom of my student over-draft really. Around every corner, usually next to a DELISH bakery, there’s an amazing homeware shop!
Street Markets – Even though it’s such a big city, Brighton had such a community feel and I think part of this comes down to the street stalls and markets. On one of the streets, residents just put a table outside their front door and sell their old bits & bobs. It was so so fun rummaging through.
Dum Dum’s – I’ve never been a big fan of doughnuts but I had to try one from here. It did not disappoint. I had a caramel/fudgey one – a strong 10/10.
After a glorious, foodie & relaxed week in San Francisco, we hoped on bus down to the City of Stars. Once again, I could write a novel about how much I loved LA. Weirdly, my first impression was not great and I decided that I wanted to go straight back to San Francisco but I slowly got used to the sprawling size and the craziness of the city. Now, when I think back, the whole trip just seems magical.
Here are my top 5 favourite snippets of Los Angeles:
Venice Boardwalk: this was possibly the most diverse, eclectic area I’ve ever encountered. As we were out there doing Geography research, I was obviously looking at the area differently to how I would if I was just on holiday, but I was completely besotted with the Boardwalk. The palms and the skate park to the sunset and the street art, the whole stretch had such an awesome buzz to it.
The Griffith Observatory: we were conveniently in LA around the time La La Land came out so coming here was so surreal. I loved the film (& definitely did not watch it twice on the flight) so seeing the set and being able to see the Hollywood sign alongside such an EPIC view was amazing.
The People: I LOVE Californians. The people we met were so so friendly and couldn’t do enough for us. I know for some people (my boyfriend included), think the over-friendly, forward nature is irritating but I loved it!
Santa Monica beach: the ocean, the sand and the sun could never get boring. Our hostel was on 2nd Street so we were one block from the beach and right next to Santa Monica Pier. Waking up to 20+ degrees everyday and getting off the metro just in time to see the sunset was the perfect way to start and end everyday.
The Feeling: this sounds so bloody cliché and pathetic, but the whole feel of LA is just magical. There is a reason it’s called the City of Stars, because honestly, there’s just this feeling and buzz to LA that you can’t put into words. It’s what makes you look back on it and think “wow”. It is surreal.
In February I went on the absolute trip of a lifetime. My 2 best friends & I flew 11 hours to San Francisco for the week before embarking on a lengthy megabus journey down to sunny Los Angeles (which I’ll talk about in another post because MY GOD there is too much for one).
So here’s my top 5 snippets of San Francisco:
THE FOOD: so I expected the food in America to be good but it surpassed every expectation I had. On the first night, due to jet lag, we had an “hour” nap at 4pm which turned into us waking up at 9pm confused and delirious. By the time we made it out it was late so we wanted carbs & convenience. We found this incredible, all-American diner and ate all the fries, grilled cheese and milkshakes we could. UNREAL!
Sausalito: we took a bus trip across the Golden Gate Bridge to a small town called Sausalito. It was beautiful. There was a little harbour full of swishy yachts and cute little boat houses lining the water front. We had lunch in a lovely cafe looking over at San Francisco city and the bay and wandered around the cute shops too.
The Golden Gate Bridge: I mean, I could not write about San Francisco and not mention it’s identifying feature. No picture in the world will do it justice. The size and colour is amazing! We didn’t walk across but we drove over it a few times. I love that from every hill in the city (& there are A LOT) you can always see it peeking through.
Twin Peaks: we wanted to find a view point before we left the city and so many people recommended Twin Peaks. We ambled through the Castro, which was such a cool, relaxed area and up some steep streets all the way to the top of Twin Peaks. It was possibly the best view I have ever seen. We essentially had a 360 view of the city. The sun was setting to our left and we got up there at such a perfect time because all of the lights started coming on in the city. Market Street was lit up and looked so beautiful.
The Streets: this was the first time I had ever been to America so I guess this isn’t reflective of San Francisco itself, but one of my most memorable moments of the trip was stepping outside the hostel on the first day, early in the morning, and looking down the street. We arrived late at night so this was the first glimpse of the city I’d seen. I felt like I was in a film. Probably a mixture of buildings higher than I’d ever seen, the noises and the yellow taxi’s planted me right in the middle of Princess Diaries and it was AMAZING. I will never forget how it felt.
The best thing of all was that I got to spend it all with the 2 best gals I could wish for (puke). That’s all for now folks,