Thursday, 31 December 2015

Blogmas Day 31: Top 10 Moments Of 2015 And New Years Resolutions

The last day of Blogmas is finally here and I've made it out alive, it's difficult to put up one post per day and whilst I've managed... Well, lets just say it's been difficult. I'm kind of pleased it's over for at least another eleven months, providing that I decide to do it anyway.

This post is a way to reflect on the general awesomeness that has been 2015 and a few resolutions for 2016. This year has just been so amazing, I mean, there's obviously been a few blips but all in all it's been... Wow. I can only hope that next year will be just as, if not better than this one.

I'm just going to list my top ten moments of 2015, though, they won't be in order because I can't decided which has been the best!
  1. I started a new job, my first job actually, in social media. It's a step in the right direction and I've actually enjoyed the whole office working thing for the most part. Hopefully one day I'll manage to progress and be in a higher role but for now I'm just happy earning whilst I learn.
  2. I've visited AJ a few times in London, one of which times we stalked the Sherlock set for a little while and, yes, Cumberbatch is prettier in real life. I always enjoy our little catch-ups and I think we're well overdue!
  3. I got to see McBusted for the second time with my brother, we're planning on seeing Busted perform on their reunion tour next year with my friend Leanne. It's always nice to go to a concert with two people who love the band.
  4. Staying on the subject of concerts and music, I also went to see S Club 7 earlier in the year on their reunion tour. It was great to dance to and Leanne and I had a brilliant night because we danced like idiots and we didn't care that we wore ourselves out.
  5. The Bridlington Vintage Fair was amazing, I got to check out all of the fifties dresses and I saw a few vinyls I wanted too. It was an interesting experience to say the least, most of the people at the stalls went all out and dressed as if they were from the fifties, though, obviously their outfits had modern twists to them.
  6. My family and I went to Majorca for two weeks and it was beautiful, the year before we went to Tenerife twice so it was nice to see another place with them. It was a very uncomfortable heat but it was still a pretty damn good holiday.
  7. After about fifteen years I finally got the chance to visit Hong Kong as my gran has live there for the whole time but I've never had the chance before. I also had a day trip to China so I got to see a little bit of that too. I was just pleased that I finally got to tan to be honest, though, it was was nice to spend a full month with my gran. Also, shoutout to Nashia who got lost with me near the ladies market in Mong Kok! 
  8. I baked with my nerds, too. Not in a tanning sense, in a literal sense but I mainly hovered in the background and ate everything. Thanks for everything this year, Becky and Autumn!
  9. Well, I can't go through all of these moments without mentioning Mike. Poor Mike has to deal with stupid calls whenever I miss a bus or whenever I get bored so here's to those pointless conversations we have about pimps and politics, a winning combination.
  10. I got to work with Nouveau Lashes for their #UltimateLashGoals campaign, I got free individual lash extensions in a nearby salon. I love working with beauty brands to create content for you guys.
I'm going to list my three new years resolutions next because I have a few hopes for the next year that I want to share.
  1. My main resolution is to get better at blog photography, I might get my brother Sam to help me out with a few because he's nice like that. Also, Jessica isn't really tall enough for the outfit photos.
  2. I would like to travel more but I would like to be more spontaneous about it, so I'd like to just think "oh! I fancy popping over to Paris for a few days" and then do it. I need to do things like that for myself anyway to just avoid burnout.
  3. I want to get fit and healthy, as cliché as that goal is... It's been something I've been procrastinating for absolute ages. I need to start going to the gym, I have a free membership because of my dad's caravan ownership thing anyway.
Well, happy new year everyone! Have a good one, I know I will. Let me know in the comments what your resolutions are because I'd love to know!

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Blogmas Day 30: December Beauty Favourites

Hello everyone, so today's Blogmas post is a little round up of my main beauty favourites from over the past month. Some of them I've acquired myself and others I been given over Christmas. Some of the items I've mentioned before and others I haven't had the chance to blog about.

The Wet Brush has quickly become a constant in my routine, it's now the only brush I use as it causes less damage and it detangles my hair softly. I received it in a beauty box a little while ago and I was pleasantly surprised with it, it was an unusual item to find in the Look Fantastic box as it's mainly made up of skincare and beauty.

The Molton Brown Japanese Body Wash was from the same Look Fantastic Beauty Box as the Wet Brush, I've repurchased the body wash since then as I really liked the smell and the way it made my skin feel after use. 

Next I want to talk about the two glitter nail polishes I've been using as top coats over December. They're both from Barry M, the red and gold one being Jingle Bells from last years Christmas collection and the silver one being Glitter ball. I created the look to the right using Glitter ball in a blog post a few days ago here. Take a quick look if you want to read more about my opinion of it.

The Black Seaweed Peel Off Mask and the Chocoholic Mud Mask from Montagne Jeunesse have been favourites of mine for a while. The mud mask was part of the office Secret Santa but I love using their masks so this just reminded me how much I love them. The peel off mask is great for when my skin is really bad as it dries out spots and takes away dead skin, though, they do make a mess.

My favourite lipstick at the moment is by Revlon in the shade 'Pink In The Afternoon'. This is another item that I've blogged about but it was last month when I was just testing it out, you can check out the post here. It's just a really subtle coral sort of peach shade that I like to use for work, it doesn't dry out my lips and it's easy to apply. I got this lippy from Glossybox so score!

The last item in this months beauty favourites is the Lovestruck perfume by Vera Wang which is a beautifully boxed sweet yet floral scent that lasts throughout the day with minimal reapplication. I got it for Christmas from my mum and dad and I have to say, they chose right.

Thanks for reading about my beauty favourites, let me know in the comments if you like these products too or if you would add any of your own to the list.

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Blogmas Day 29: A Treat To Myself (Clothing HAUL) Ft. Boohoo And Primark

Hello everyone! Today's post is just a little clothing HAUL since I decided to treat myself after Christmas. I'm still waiting for some items I bought online from JAWBREAKING but I'll just do a separate post for those items as I can play around with photos for those items a little bit. 

I bought items from the Boohoo sale because I figured they'd be easy to style and that I could use them in different ways to fit the seasons of the year. The order only cost eight pounds as the delivery was free so I was fairly happy with my Boohoo experience, especially since the order was delivered a few days after the order was made.

I purchased the Vivienne V Back Smock Dress in grey, it was only five pounds down from twelve. It's so versatile as I can add different belts, wear it with or without tights or even add a cardigan, blazer or jacket. The point is that it can be dressed up or down in different ways so that I can wear the dress for multiple occasions; work, coffee with mates, a date or perhaps an event.

The other item I bought from Boohoo is the Scarlet Tonal Checked Mini Skirt which is currently unavailable on the site but I bought it for three pounds. It's another fairly versatile item which I plan to wear with a plain tank top and perhaps a blazer.

The items I bought from Primark were more on the practical side of fashion, sport bras, they're comfy and when when I finally kick my butt into gear for the gym I'll be sure to use them because they're surprisingly supportive.

The one on the left was four pounds, it's padded and adjustable so it's perfect for me as I'm not particularly flat chested. I love the bright colours as the one's I've had previously have been fairly plain and grey.

The two sports bras on the right were three pounds fifty and are designed the same as each other but with different colours, they're not padded but they do they job they're meant for so I'm fairly happy with them. I picked up the medium size which is apparently a ten to twelve but they felt a tiny bit snug, still comfortable though!

Well, that's all for my clothing HAUL. I hope you guys have enjoyed my piece for today's Blogmas, there isn't long to go now! My last Blogmas post will be out on the 31st with a round up post to follow on the 1st of the next month. 

Monday, 28 December 2015

Blogmas Day 28: Building A Gingerbread House

Hello everyone, so today's post is about the Gingerbread House Making Kit that I got as a present for Christmas. Obviously, I didn't buy it so I don't know where it was from but I had a lot of fun putting it all together and decorating it.

The gingerbread pieces came pre-baked and shaped so it was fairly precise. I just had to piece it together with the piped royal icing that was also part of the kit. I left the house for fifteen minutes after sticking it together so that it could set and have a chance to sit before I started the decorating. 

I decorated the housing using the piped royal icing as a glue/pen to add details as well as the sweets that were also included in the kit. The larger round sweets made paving stones, the drops were used as extra details an the hears were used as feature windows. 

I'm not going to lie, setting this up was a stressful endeavour and my arms did hurt after all of the piping but it kept me busy and I enjoyed setting it up and building it. You never know, I might attempt it as a fully homemade project next year. That might be a disaster though because there's a reason I don't bake that often.

Well, thanks for reading. I hope you guys enjoyed checking out my attempt at building a gingerbread house. It wasn't the neatest of gingerbread houses but it took me at least an hour to sort out properly so I think it's earned its place on my blog today so until tomorrow, bye!

Sunday, 27 December 2015

Blogmas Day 27: #NOTD 2

Hello everyone! For today's Blogmas I'll be doing a second #NOTD post as I received another nail polish over Christmas from the Lady Writes Secret Santa. The Barry M Glitter Ball was the one that I unwrapped, you can see the post here

For the look that is pictured to the left I started off with a PS. Nail Polish from Primark which I got from the office Secret Santa to stick with the Secret Santa theme. It's a soft red, not a particularly festive shade of the colour but nice nonetheless. It dried quickly and only required one coat which was a pleasant surprise.

The Glitter Ball nail polish also only required only one coat but for a more sparkly or intense look you could always add another coat or two. I love the consistency of this polish but usually I'm not too impressed with Barry M but this one has earned my seal of approval.

Well, thanks for reading my #NOTD post. Check out yesterday's post and let me know which of the two looks you prefer in the comments below.  

Saturday, 26 December 2015

Blogmas Day 26: #NOTD

Hello everyone! Today's Blogmas post is a #NOTD piece as I received a Ciaté Mini Bauble as a part of my present from Leanne. I love sparkly nail polish and since it's boxing day, well, why not?

Before this mini polish I had never tried anything by Ciaté so I was interested to see what sort of consistency it would have. To be honest, it wasn't all that bad for a sparkly polish, it dried quickly and it worked well as both a top coat and as a stand alone polish too. I wouldn't rate it for longevity, however, for a night out or just an event it's great as it doesn't ruin nails or take ages to remove before work/school. 

This particular polish is called Naughty Or Nice, which I thought was a cute little touch. The glitter in the polish is pink and blue so it's a bit of sparkle for over the Christmas period but it's not an overly festive colour combination so it isn't restricted to December. 

Well, thanks for reading. Tomorrow's post will be about the Barry M nail polish I got in the Lady Write's Secret Santa. It's also a glittery one so there will be comparisons! 

Friday, 25 December 2015

Blogmas Day 25: Happy Christmas! (Secret Santa With The Lady Writes)

Happy Christmas! I hope you're all having a fantastic time over the holidays. Today I'm just going to tell you about how I got on with The Lady Writes Secret Santa project. 

So Chloe from The Lady Writes set up a Secret Santa and earlier in December they turned up but I was strong and I left them under the tree! We had a maximum of twenty pounds to spend on each other but we got to see the social media accounts of the people we were buying for. I really enjoyed buying things to match the person that I got assigned to.

My Secret Santa managed to pick the perfect items for me and she obviously has fantastic taste! I was pleased to finally open them because I've been intrigued about them since they arrived. Well, thank you whoever you are because I love all of them! 

The first thing that I opened was the planner, I've been wanting one to help me plan my blog so I'm very pleased with it. I also got a Soap & Glory Body Butter set, which I nearly bought before Christmas, some Barry M nail polish and soothing face wipes. They were a nice bunch of surprises anyway!

So I hope you guys have all enjoyed Christmas, watch this space for my next Blogmas post! Not long to go until the project finishes now!

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Blogmas Day 24: Christmas Eve

Hello everyone! I hope you're all having a fantastic Christmas Eve, sorry that this is a little later on but I've been all over the place getting things sorted for tomorrow and visiting people. Anyway, today's Blogmas post is going to be fairly brief since it's Christmas Eve but I just wanted to make sure that my blog wouldn't suffer because I had a busy day. 

So I figured I should share a few snaps of the mini Christmas village that my Grandad has set up in his new flat. He used to set one up every year but when he fell ill he wasn't able to so this is the first time it's been set up for ages. 

Most of the details were on shelves and he used cotton wool fluff as snow as well as white tinsel to frame the scenes. The houses, people and little trees were picked up over the years from the most random shops. It was very gradual, though. 

I'll be back with another post tomorrow, though, it won't be quite as short. Merry Christmas and best wishes to all of you. Thanks for reading, until next time... Bye! 

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Blogmas Day 23: Christmas Party At Cena And Secret Santa

Hello everyone! So Monday night was the office night out for GCV and we all went to Cena in Yarm for a meal. Cena is a lovely little Italian restaurant with a cute rustic feel to it and in all honesty, the food there is divine.

After snacking on rosemary and sea salt focaccia and olives I ordered roasted sweet potato soup. The soup was yummy and it came with some more bread smothered in a cream cheese. The main was gorgeous, too. I chose lasagna which was rich and filling, I nearly didn't finish it but I just couldn't leave it because it tasted so nice. After all of that I had the chocolate torte, which I really shouldn't have had but it kind of helped soak up a bit of the white wine that was kept topped up throughout.  

All in all it was a fun night, we had quite a laugh about some of the things that had gone on in the office over the past year and I got a chance to chat to Jayne, Norm's wife so I was quite happy. And to think that I was all anxious about going out! It was my first ever office night out so I was understandably a bit nervous, I thought I'd say something stupid and get sacked or something. Luckily I was on my best behaviour! 

We did Secret Santa and opened out gifts at the table so I figured I'd just share with you guys what I got. 

Whoever chose my name made some great choices for the gifts, I received a Baylis and Harding Gift Set, a Montagne Jeunesse Chocoholic Mud Mask and two PS nail polishes. I think that they got it very right when it came to this years Secret Santa. I hope what I bought the person I was assigned to was to taste! Since I'm fairly certain he won't read this post, I bought him a little Starbuck bundle made up with the Christmas Blend Coffee.

As a little extra, the accountant for our office, Dave bought all of us girls YSL lip products which I thought was really sweet. His wife Ranie helped him chose the shades and colours and they got mine spot on, it's the YSL Gloss Volupte in Rose Fusion. It isn't drying at all and it smells amazing, though, that may mean that I'll keep trying to lick it off my lips so we'll see how that goes! 

Well, thanks for reading about the office night out in Yarm. I'd love to know what you guys have done this year if you'd like to leave a comment. Until next time, bye! 

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Blogmas Day 22: Christmas Party Makeup

Hello everyone! So I'm absolutely shattered but that's totally my fault, I stayed up late the night before the Christmas meal with the guys at work and then on the actual night I ended up chatting to my dad for an age after I got home. 

Since I look like utter crap right now I figured I'd just share with you my makeup look for a Christmas party. I did mine in the office as I don't drive and wouldn't have had much time to get ready otherwise so it's not at it's best but I was pretty pleased with it anyway. 

I started with the base which was just the L'Oreal Bare Minerals Powder as it conceals and covers without multiple steps. My skin isn't as bad as it usually is because of the mask I used the other night but it's still not fantastic so I like that extra bit of coverage.

I then just added some simple bronze/gold eyeshadow to my lids as I already primed them with the base. My eyelashes are a little sparse due to the fact that I recently removed permanent eyelash extensions but they don't look too bad with an extra application of mascara. 

On my lips I wore Pink In The Afternoon Super Lustrous Lipstick by Revlon as it's my current favourite and I wore quite a neutral outfit. 

Well, thanks for reading today's post. I hope you guys enjoyed it, let me know what you think in the comments below. Until next time, bye!

Monday, 21 December 2015

Blogmas Day 21: Mani Monday (Nails For Office Night Out)

Hello everyone and thanks for keeping up with my Blogmas project. So today is the day of my office night out but it's also my mum's birthday so, yeah, happy birthday mum! Since I have to go out for the Christmas work do I decided to paint my nails last night and I felt like sharing them with you guys so here we are.

Since I didn't know what I wanted to wear at the time I wanted to have quite neutral nails but then I just decided that I wanted to wear black so I picked up a few bottles and checked if they weren't ready to be thrown out.

For every nail except the one on my ring finger I chose the Rimmel Nail Polish in the shade Black Out because it has a dark sooty appearance and I figured that if I was going to wear black I might as well stick with the colour theme.

Of course, that would be boring on its own so I chose a red YSL polish for a feature nail (festive r what?) and then gave it a top coat of Jingle Bells by Barry M which I bought last year and didn't use a massive amount of. 

I finished off the look by adding a clear top coat so that they would last at least until I go out for the night out with my colleagues. It's a good thing that I've started to let my nails grow back again because this would have looked ridiculous on smaller ones. 

So what do you guys think of my NOTD? It's been a while since I've sorted my own nails out so it was nice to paint and decorate them once again. Thanks for reading, bye!

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Blogmas Day 20: A Night In With Lush And AA Skincare

Hello everyone! This weekend has been a fairly chilled one, I've had a few late mornings and I've slobbed around in my comfy clothes. Since I've done pretty much nothing and my work night out is tomorrow, I figured I might as well blog about my pamper evening beforehand. 

Earlier this week I received a few AA Skincare goodies and I had a few Lush products to use up so I put them all together to help me relax and hopefully brighten me up a bit. I've been ill over the past few weeks so it's nice to just take a step back and take a few minutes up for myself. 

I think I may have gone a little overboard with the two Lush products but oh well, the bath smelled gorgeous. Though, it did look a little like diluted orange juice.

The Magic Of Christmas Wand is a reusable bubble bar, a little goes a long way and it doesn't actually deplete too quickly. It just basically smells like Christmas, the star anise and the cinnamon stick just add to the aesthetics. 

I will say though, it makes quite a mess. I didn't know what to do with it after using it, it's just sat on the side of the bath possibly staining the white of it. I guess I'll check it out once it's dry but right now I'm not particularly concerned about that so whatever!

After using the bubble bar I added the Cinders bath bomb, it was definitely overkill but hey, my bathroom has never smelled so festive. I loved the spicy sort of woodsy scent that was balanced out with a slight sweetness.

Unlike many of the bath bombs on offer at Lush, Cinders doesn't really have any extra surprises like colour changes or multiple fizz sections. It is, however, great if you want a bath bomb that does its job and leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth. 

Tonight I also wanted to try out the AA Skincare that I was sent so I added a few extra steps to my usual routine. The assignment was originally from Bloggers Required but I also received a press release.

I was sent the Frankinsense and Rose Cleansing Gel and Mud Mask which I liked the idea of anyway. My skin has been super blemished recently so I jumped at the chance to check this stuff out.

I started out with the cleansing gel, washed that off and then applied the mud mask. It's left my skin feeling softer and I do think that a few acne scars have faded out a little but I'm more partial towards peel off masks. 

It made me feel much more chilled out anyway, I don't get the chance to have a proper pamper session so I appreciated the extra time this weekend. Well, thanks for reading today's Blogmas post. Until next time, bye!

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Blogmas Day 19: Catching Up With Friends And Travel Plans

Hello everyone! First off before I start today's Blogmas I just want to apologise about how late this one is, I had other content planned out but it just didn't go ahead. I was supposed to have a review for Freshlook Colourblend contact lenses but unfortunately I couldn't get them in my eyes so that one's going to have to be pushed back. 

Today's content will be about my pre-Christmas catchup with Autumn and Becky, two of my good friends that I met whilst on a journalism course. Since I left college we haven't had a massive amount of time to spend together but we do always have a laugh when we find time. This time we decided to have a baking day but it was full of mishaps and the baking wasn't 100%. We did, however, have a laugh and chat about a lot of things. 

We are, or rather Autumn is currently planning a trip to Dublin for 2017. It's a little far away but because we're all doing such different things and we have different money situations but it will be done and we already have some hotel choices and ideas about activities. I'm also planning a solo trip for sometime next year so do me a favour and give me a few suggestions for decently priced getaways! 

This is a bit of a short one but if I'm being honest, I spent way too much time trying to put those contact lenses in. It's actually embarrassing how much time it took out of my day, I've stopped and then revisited it over and over again. I'll try again tomorrow but it's so difficult, how do people even wear contact lenses daily? Oh well, thanks for taking a few moments to read today's Blogmas post. Next one will obviously be up tomorrow! 

Friday, 18 December 2015

Blogmas Day 18: Christmas Playlist (14 Songs)

Hello everyone! So it's Blogmas day eighteen and today's post is simply my Christmas playlist. This one isn't going to be a long one, but hey, it still counts! I'm still going strong on the Blogmas front and it's over the halfway mark now. 

Music plays a fairly big part in a lot my Christmas memories, even if the songs were just in the background they just bring up memories connected to past years. My music playlist is going to include festive songs AND songs I like to listen to at Christmas time.
  1. All I Want For Christmas - Mariah Carey
  2. Last Christmas - Wham
  3. Driving Home For Christmas - Chris Rea
  4. Runaway - Del Shannon
  5. Merry Christmas - Shakin' Stevens
  6. Hello Mary Lou - Ricky Nelson
  7. I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday - Wizard
  8. Cannonball - Little Mix
  9. Fairytale Of New York - The Pogues
  10. Frosty The Snowman - Michael Bublé
  11. Little Drummer Boy - Bing Crosby ft. David Bowie 
  12. Hallelujah - Jeff Buckley
  13. Do They Know It’s Christmas? - Band Aid
  14. Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen
Well, thanks for reading my Christmas playlist. Let me know in the comments which ones you guys like and which you would add. Have a fab weekend!

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Blogmas Day 17: The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 2

Hello everyone! So yesterday I went to see The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 2 with Leanne so Blogmas day 17 will just be about my opinion of it. Just before I get started I want to apologise in advance for tomorrow's post, it's going to be later on in the day than I would like but there's nothing I can do about that.

Anyway, on with the post! We went to the cinema for no particular reason, we just had some time to kill so we just went for it. I read the books ages ago and I've watched all of the films so I figured that I might as well check out the final installment of the franchise. Though, apparently Lionsgate are considering prequels so maybe this isn't the last we'll see of The Hunger Games.

I'm a firm believer in the whole 'books are always better than films' opinion, I just think that films miss out a lot of the finer details that make up the background stories of the characters. I have to say, the film wasn't bad, I daresay that I enjoyed it but I did feel like the book completely overshadowed the film. 

I think, with recent events and things being the way they are, The Hunger Games is quite poignant and the whole rebellion is something that we all have our own opinions on. I'm against oppression but there's a limit to the damage that I think is at an acceptable level. The film stuck to the story line but also addressed quite a few social issues in an intense yet satirical way, the whole set of films have lived up to that image and it's shown multiple dimensions when it comes to the demand of society on both sides.

What I like about The Hunger Games is that Katniss Everdeen is a strong character, with Bella Swan in Twilight she came off as a whiney damsel in distress but Katniss was stubborn and fought for what she believed in. So whilst Twilight was dragged into my review, I will point out that they aren't even in the same league. I don't want to give away too many details but I will say that I quite enjoyed the movie, on the other hand, I did feel like the deaths didn't have as much of an impact on me as character demises in other films - for many of us, nothing will rid the pain of Dobby's death in Harry Potter!

Well, before I end this mini review I'm just going to do the typical cringey blogger thing to do and show you guys what I had to eat before the film. Yet again, I dragged Leanne into Nando's and got my usual order; medium spiced butterfly peri-peri chicken, peri-peri salted chips and corn on the cob. Yummy! Leanne's more picky than me so she just had chips, though, no matter where we go she always has chips so... Oh well. 

Thanks for reading this post, I'd love to know what you think of the film in the comments below. 

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Blogmas Day 16: Stocking Fillers For Him

Hello everyone! Today's Blogmas post is going to be 'Stocking Fillers For Him' as I did a 'Stocking Fillers For Her' post yesterday and it's only fair that I give this one a go. 

Men are notoriously difficult to buy for and I tend to struggle for that part of my Christmas shopping. I have, however, managed to pull together a few ideas for you guys so lets see how this goes.

Let me know in the comments if you find this list useful or if you have any good ideas yourself, I love reading your thoughts and opinions!
  1. The first item on the list is this Burgundy Buffalo Check Scarf from Next. It costs £16 but it's a lovely soft and cosy material and you can't really go wrong with a scarf.
  2. The Christmas Blend from Starbucks is just a little festive treat that costs about £4.50 and works really well as part of a hamper or a Secret Santa gift.
  3. Since my 'Stocking Fillers For Her' post included a book I figured that I might as well add a book and the Esquire Eat Like A Man Book is a fab little addition to this guide. It's currently £13.50 on ASOS but it is usually £19.99 so if you're going to buy it, buy it as soon as possible so you aren't spending a fortune!
  4. The Jack Wills Sancreed Wash Bag is a little pricey at £29.50 for a small wash bag but the Jack Wills brand is well loved by many and it can be a handy gift for the traveler in your life. 
  5. To go with the wash bag, you might as well buy some toiletries so the Old Spice Danger Time Body Spray and Shower Gel Gift Set (currently £3) is a nice little stocking filler. To be honest, you could buy any toiletry set but I always think of Terry Crews when I think about Old Spice...
  6. The last item on the list is the JBL Flip 3 Portable Wireless Speaker which is currently £49.99 down from its usual price of £99.99 at Currys. The battery can last up to eight hour so you won't have to worry that much about charge and it's easy to take away with you. 
Well, thanks for reading today's Blogmas post. I hope I've given you guys a few ideas as it's difficult to buy for men and I know that I struggle most years. 

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Blogmas Day 15: Stocking Fillers For Her

Hello everyone! So today's Blogmas post is an aid to you guys who are still struggling to bulk up your friends, girlfriends or female family members stocking. It can be a difficult task when you're not seeing the bigger picture but I've been good this year.

Rather than just buying one large gift I tend to buy quite a few cool small items, my gifts are affectionately known as 'funky boxes of crap' by Leanne. Don't get me wrong, I buy nice gifts but I also get sucked in by the little novelties so here's just a mini guide to help both you guys and myself out. 

Well, here are a few items to give you some stocking filler inspiration:
  1. The first item on the list is the Alphabet Filled Scented Candle from Next. The scent is described white lily, honey suckle and jasmine so it's a pretty and fresh scent that will work perfectly after Christmas when all of the rich and spicy scents are on their way out. It costs just £4 so you could quite easily and cheaply put together a set of candles for someones name.
  2. The Zoella Bath Bombinis Fragranced Bath Fizzers smell gorgeous and look fantastic in the bathroom or on a dressing table as the jar is made to last. At £9 you just can't go wrong with this stocking filler!
  3. This ASSOULINE Vintage Cocktails is a fun gift to wrap up, the person you give this to will have lots of fun testing out recipes and techniques over Christmas and New Year. I find £30 a bit steep for a book but it's a fantastic gift that couldn't come at a better time. 
  4. This next stocking filler is an absolute gem, the NPW Scented Detangle Brush is bright and colourful and it has a lovely scent to boot! Brushes such as this one are great for frizzy or damaged hair and this particular one only costs £8!
  5. The NIP+FAB Detox Body Blends Kit is a great gift for this time of the year, no matter who you are, you're going to need a bit of rejuvenation throughout this cold weather and the party season. £8.99 is a reasonable price and it can be good for Secret Santa too!
  6. The EDEN Antique Silver Peridot Ring is my favourite item in this post, my favourite thing about Regal Rose is their attention to detail and this ring is the perfect example of that. It costs £24 but whover you buy this for is going to adore it!
That's it for my 'Stocking Fillers For Her' post, it's a bit of a mix but the variety is what makes this mini guide so handy! Thanks for reading, I encourage you to comment below on which item is your favourite and perhaps if you would add anything to the list. Well, until next time, bye!

Monday, 14 December 2015

Blogmas Day 14: Snowman And Snowflake Nail Details

Hello everyone! Today's Blogmas post is an extension of day one's sparkly festive nails. I mentioned that alternatively you could use pastel rather than glitter shades and paint on the details so I figured I might as well revisit that. It was also an excuse to catch up with Leanne because recently she's been super busy with uni.

Anyway, since the snowflakes are fairly easy I decided to add snowmen into the mix so that's a mini summary of today's blog post. I hope you guys enjoy this, let me know in the comments if there's anything you want me to try next.

Snowflakes:

  • To start the snowflake just draw a cross with one line longer than the other with a white nail art pen. 
  • Next, add little lines at the end of each main line so they look like crossbones. 
  • The last step is to add diagonal lines and perhaps a sprinkle of glitter if that's the look you're going for.
Snowmen:
  • Start the snowman off with three merged circles drawn on top of each other with a white nail art pen. This makes up the foundation of the snowman, the body.
  • Once that is dry, draw on a little hat. Draw it before the other little details so you don't smudge the rest whilst you're drawing.
  • Dot along the body to create the 'coal' buttons and then do the same for the snowman's eyes.
  • The last detail is the carrot nose which can be drawn on with an orange nail art pen or alternatively you could use an orange gem with nail adhesive.
  • Optionally you could add arms and a scarf but for fairly subtle designs you can just leave those parts out.

I did these after spending an hour or two in the snow, I know, I'm just a big kid. It's a good thing that Leanne picked me up though because I was starting to freeze up. I think we were both a bit frazzled so it was nice to just chill with The Vamps new album on as we did her nails. 

Well, what did you guys think of the nail art? It was simple and not my best work but at this time of the year there isn't much time to just chill and decorate nails. Thanks for reading, let me know in the comments what you think! 

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Blogmas Day 13: Nouveau Lashes #UltimateLashSelfie

Hello everyone! Since I have joined the Nouveau Lash Gang and earlier in the week I was sent a bag full of lash goodies and as an extra treat from Nouveau, this weekend I got individual lash extensions done at The House in Spennymoor.

It was my first time getting lash extensions so I had no clue what to expect, I was a nervous wreck beforehand! The overall experience wasn't as bad as I expected, the treatment lasted for about ninety minute but it felt like much less because I talked to the beautician the whole time. The only part I wasn't so keen on was the stinging sensation that I got when I opened my eyes for the first time after. The fumes from the glue made my eyes sting for a minute or two but that was soon over.

The goodie bag I received from Nouveau was quite extensive, I got a whole lot of gorgeous gifts. 
  • Strip lash sets from one to four, all fairly minimal but also glamorous.
  • Fine point tweezers for an easy application.
  • A pro lash tool to help me apply and maintain a number of treatments.
  • Eyelash adhesive, good quality and not particularly harmful to lashes.
  • Conditioning serum for use on natural and LVL lashes.
  • Lash extension remover was included in the bag, a review will be available once I have decided to get rid of my current lash extensions!
Well, that's my first post with the Nouveau Lash Gang, thanks for reading. I hope you guys have enjoyed it because I certainly enjoyed getting my lashes done and typing up this post. What do you guys think of them? 

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Blogmas Day 12: Home And Lifestyle Wishlist

Hello everyone! Today's Blogmas post is back to me so no one is guest posting, it's nice to get some blogging done again! Primarily this is a home and lifestyle wishlist but it is subtly festive so that's two boxes checked. It's been ages since I've done anything remotely like this so who knows, maybe you'll see a few more over the course of this project. 

I've got a bit of a mix in terms of products and stores that they're from, though, sorry to anyone outside the UK as a few of these places don't ship internationally. If you comment and tell me I can do a country specific post for wherever you are!

Right, well, onwards and upwards. Let's get this show on the road! 

  1. Item number one is the SKURAR Grey Candle Holder from where else but IKEA? I love a cheeky visit to that place, it's fab! The candle holder is delicate and when a tealight is added it gives off a beautiful glow and the lace like pattern is projected around the holder. It only costs £2!
  2. The STRÅLA LED 4-Star Light is an adorable detail you can add to your home, it's also from IKEA so the price is okay - £24 is okay for what it is!
  3. We're going to stray away from IKEA now and check out the Shine Bright Cushion from NEXT as I think it adds a subtle bit of festive sparkle without actually mentioning Christmas - it works all year round! It's £12 which I didn't expect because NEXT can be quite pricey at times. 
  4. The Wooden Glitter Stag Decoration is just £3 from Primark and looks fab with homey tartan fabrics, I would add this to a bedroom but it would look great in any other room too. 
  5. It's not just any star bunting, it's the adorable fabric Star Bunting from M&S. I like this because it has that super cute and stylish vibe that a lot of their products have. It costs £15 and you could DIY some but the way they've made it just really sits well with me. 
  6. The Bohemian Floral Biscuit Tin is also from M&S, it's a dark yet feminine addition to the kitchen that just makes the room look a little less plain. £9.50 for a biscuit tin is a bit daft in my book, though, I tend to used old sweet containers so who am I to complain?
Well, that was my home and lifestyle wishlist for Blogmas. I hope you guys have enjoyed it, let me know what you think in the comments below!

Friday, 11 December 2015

Blogmas Day 11: DIY Christmas Tree (Guest Post By Tam)

Hello everyone! Today's Blogmas post is something a little different for my blog, it's to do with DIY and crafts so this should be fun! Tamara from Me Just Talking To You has typed this one up for me so make sure you check out her blog once you've had a read of this!

Hello! Today I'm talking Christmas decorations...This is my favourite part of the christmas period! It's so festive when decorations go up, gives you this warm and cosy feeling in your stomach! Now if you a student or like me have a puppy who will just destroy the tree and all the baubles with it, then I have just the ticket for you...Here is my DIY Christmas Tree! All you will need is a book you don't want any more (if you don't have one pop to your local charity shop or such and buy a cheap book there to use.) You will also need a bit of patience for this I'm Afraid.

Firstly open the book and with the very first page, you take the top right corner and fold it in to the crease of the book. Next you take the folded edge and fold that into the crease of the book and then just fold the little bit handing over the edge at the bottom, up into itself so that you have a flat edge bottom.

The final step is most definitely the important one: keep repeating until you have done every page and you till end up with a Christmas made out of a book! When you start nearing the middle it will become a bit harder and harder but I promise if you keep going you'll love the finish product! 

I think these look so unique, well I've never seen one in anyone's house before! Then you can leave them as they are or you could get some paint and paint it green with some baubles on too or you could even cut out triangles from the edges to give it that tree look with arms!

Well I hope you have enjoy this little DIY project! And if you attempt this, don't forget to Instagram and photo and tag me in it (tamaratiaxo) so I can see all of your wonderful DIY  Christmas Trees!

It's me, Aymie Louise again. Thanks for reading Tam's guest post, it's been an interesting one! I have to say though, I don't think I have it in me to destroy a book... 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Blogmas Day 10: Winter Haircare (A Treat From Mane 'N Tail)

I've said quite a few times since I went for a pixie crop that I favour Mane 'N Tail as a haircare brand. I used to use Aussie but I discovered this and I quickly switched allegiance, I'm fairly fickle like that. Since we're in the winter it's not such a good time for hair, it dries out and splits and when your hair is super damaged like mine... It's not good at all. 

For quite some time I've been researching haircare tips, I've been bleaching and dying my hair since I was about twelve and my hair is damaged to the point of no return. My solution was to chop it all off into a pixie style, now I look like a failed Bieber impersonator which isn't so great for a twenty year old woman. 

Before I went to Hong Kong I had my hair fairly short anyway but as you can see it was pretty much like candy floss, hence the decision to chop it off. Since I struggle to find time to hunt down products in the UK I figured I'd take advantage of the fantastic stock in Hong Kong. 

Whilst researching ways to grow hair quicker at some point in the year I found out about Mane 'N Tail. A lot of blogs and sites rave on about their haircare products so I really wanted to pick some up. I tried looking in ASDA and TESCO but I couldn't find any so I just gave up, when I went to Hong Kong it was everywhere. Since then I've discovered that it's sold in Boots, Harvey Nichols, Liberty, Fenwick, Urban Outfitters.

This post is actually coming up because I got talking to Jordanna from Mane 'N Tail and she offered to send me some products, which, since I love the brand I decided to take her up on her offer and post about them. The picture to the left was taken a few days after the cut so as you can see it was super short and it's grown so much since then so it's clear that it's working really well for my hair. The sides of my hair are now halfway down my ear lobes which is great considering it was only cut in September. It's coming along quite nicely!

Jordanna found out I liked the products through Twitter where I had been raving about the Miracle Gro Shampoo and Conditioner, she's sent me the Body and Texturising products which are really fitting for the stage in growth that my hair is going through now. It's just plain awkward. It's been a month since the picture to the right and it's longer than that now!

So that's my opinion on Mane 'N Tail, have you guys ever tried their products? Let me know in the comments what you think about them or what products you like to use.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Blogmas Day 9: Collection Long Lasting Nail Effects

Hello everyone! I'm so sorry about having yet another super late Blogmas post, I've been doing a webinar based on WordPress - Nightmare! All I'm going to say is that I'm super pleased that I use Blogger.

Anyway, for Blogmas day 9 I am sort of doing an extension of yesterday's post about the Rose Gold Edit of Glossybox, you can read my review here. I received a sparkly Collection Long Lasting Nail Effects polish and since I hadn't tried it at the time I just figured that I might as well give it a go and share my thoughts. 

The glitter in the polish is blue, purple and pink but the base of it is clear. It's a nice consistency and it only requires two coats so I'm happy on that front. 

I feel like it'll be a really great colour for Christmas Eve or New Years Eve parties. It's really cute, simple to apply and with a good base and top coat it's fairly long lasting and chip resistant. 

Well, thanks for reading... I'd love to know what your favourite festive polishes are, let me know in the comments below!

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Blogmas Day 8: Glossybox Rose Gold Edit Unboxing

Well, hello there everyone! Blogmas day 8 is simply going to be an unboxing post as I forgot that I was going to be receiving this final box. I'm not complaining at all, actually, I love this Rose Gold Edit box by blogger Really Ree. The box is absolutely gorgeous, the rose gold is super festive yet also quite girly and chic so it's a great balance.

There's also the fact that I'm a sucker for skincare stuff, half of the stuff wasn't makeup so that little detail really brightened up my day. That's not to say that I haven't loved the boxes that have mostly been makeup, I just feel like my skin needs a boost because flu is awful and so is my immune system. 

Contents:
  • The STARSKIN Calming Bio-Cellulose Second Skin Mask: A little gem I was most definitely pleased to find in the box, this mask is the perfect cure for those of us who have blemished skin.
  • The Hylamide Pore Delete Serum: To be used last in a skincare regime, this serum goes on smooth and erases the appearance of pores. It didn't really work well alongside my Bourjois foundation but it works well on its own. 
  • The Etre Belle Golden Skin Caviar Eye Roll On: A luxurious formula made to brighten up under the eyes, this roll on product de-zombifies and makes the person wearing it look more alive.
  • The So Susan Statement Skin Highlighting Pencil: I felt like this highlighter pencil went on really smoothly and gave me a shimmery glow that looked fairly festive but it wasn't as bold as many highlighters that I've used which is a good thing.
  • The Essence Liquid Lipstick in the shade Show Off: The colour of this one is a little bright for me but I do like the consistency. It's non-drying and slightly sticky so it can be easily layered or mattified with the correct products. 
  • The Collection Long Lasting Nail Polish: The sparkly polish I received in the Rose Gold Edit box has a very thin consistency, I reckon that it's great for layering on top of bolder or nude shades. 
Well, that's Blogmas post number 8 over and out. I hope you guys have enjoyed it, I've enjoyed writing about it and thinking about different ways that the products can be used. Let me know what you think in the comments below! 

Monday, 7 December 2015

Blogmas Day 7: Christmas Shopping With My Brother

Hello everyone! As of today I've been posting for Blogmas 2015 for a full week, it's been tough but I've had one post out every single day. My weekend content came out a little later than I would have like but so far I haven't been defeated by this project and I don't plan on letting it in the future!

Over the weekend I was dragged out of the house for Christmas shopping, it was a nice day out but my brother ended up buying more things for himself than he did for other people. Surprising. Not. Though, he did allow me to take a selfie with him, even if he did pretend he didn't want his face on Instagram. It's not very often we get to go shopping together so it was a nice thing to do overall, or at least it would have been if I wasn't super ill but oh well. 

I was kept happy with the fact we were going to Starbucks, I'd been wanting to try the Gingerbread Latté anyway. I do love the Starbucks festive range, my brother had their Honey and Almond Hot Chocolate and that was yummy too. I mean, they're no Pumpkin Spice Lattés but we enjoyed both drinks. I also tried the Cranberry and Orange Cookie which I found really tasty... A little sickly when paired with the latté but nice when eaten with a more plain beverage!

I paid but it was my turn, we usually take it in turns to pay for Starbucks. Well, we have done since we started our Christmas shopping tradition anyway. We do the same thing every year but this year I went online for most of it so we just picked up a few extra bits and bobs to add to peoples presents. 

Darlington is surprisingly good for Christmas shopping, they have pop up Christmas shops and quite a range of highstreet stores to choose from. That list includes Primark, Superdrug, Scotts, HMV and quite a few more. I also like how they put in a lot of effort when it comes to decorations and festive spirit, they had a brass band playing in the middle of one of the shopping centers. They put as much effort into their decorations as some of the larger shopping centers so that's something to admire, the ones they use remind me of the ones used at the Metro Center. 

Sam had to go to work at McDonalds so we had to cut our trip short but we had finished our shopping anyway. I think I was just pleased to be going home so I could relax after all of the walking we did.

I finished off the day with some wrapping and then a well deserved bubble bar. I used the Holly Golightly one from Lush which turned the bath all green and sparkly, I was told by my sister that it made me smell like Christmas so that has to be a good thing. It just looked so festive and pretty I almost didn't want to use it, it kind of seemed like a shame to crumble and use it. It was really pleasant though, as far as baths go. I'm not usually one for bubble bars, I prefer bath bombs but Lush have some fab ones this year. You can check out my Lush HAUL here.

Well, that was the main thing I did over the weekend. What did you guys get up to? Let me know in the comments below. As always, leave your links and I'll try my best to look at them ASAP! 

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Blogmas Day 6: The Christmas Decorations Are Up!

Hello everyone! I'm still absolutely loaded with flu so today's post is out late yet again, sorry about that! Hopefully I'll get better soon so my blogging game will pick back up. I've used enough bath bombs and bubble bars to last me a lifetime so... Yeah, I'll just get on with the post.

For my 6th day of Blogmas I've decided to just show you guys how the Barton's have decorated the house in preparation for Christmas. All of the decorations are from ASDA, years past and present so the simple look is easy to recreate. It's the first year I've ever not had tinsel on the tree so I'm kind of unsure about it but it's worth switching things up a bit. Even if things are super colour coordinated downstairs in our house. The general colour scheme is red, black, silver and grey so it's all matchy matchy. Of course, if it was just my influence I would like have it all brightly coloured and a bit Disney but my mum is a bit more uniform than I am! 

Saying that, she has draped everything in tinsel or fairly lights so her style can't be all that uniform! The table cloth is one that we've used for years and years and years, it's definitely older than my sister. Luckily it ties in with the scheme or it would have been out of action years ago! It's covered in little Santa Claus characters so that's fairly cute. 

The hanging lights give off a really cool effect because in the dark they look like the night sky in an artificial way. We don't really go through to the conservatory at this time of the year so the lights don't get in the way. They sort of remind me of the decorations from generic American movies with a prom scene, maybe that's just me but that's what they remind me of.

The photo we have up on the wall stays up all year round but it does fit in with the Christmas scheme quite well. The lights we've used match the ones we have to drape over the New York picture we have in our front room. I think the canvas looks Christmassy without the lights but they're a nice touch. I like the way it's all sort of framed around the canvas and the television. Points to anyone who can guess what was playing on there! 

It's getting festive fairly early in our household this year, usually we hold off until at least halfway through the month. I'm surprised they went up as early as they have, it's nice to see them all set up though so I'm pleased with it. I've been trying to get the decorations up before the 14th for years, it's only just starting to be swayed in my favour!

We use all sorts of subtle details to make the house festive, the holly berries and lights around this picture frame just sit atop and get switched on via the batteries and wires running through the feature. We'll probably add more little Christmassy features over the next few weeks, at least we've made a start. I'm really getting into the festive spirit!

Do you guys have your decorations up yet or do you have different traditions or guidelines? Let me know in the comments and if you're a blogger too, add links to your decorative posts. Thanks for reading, wish me luck for the next weeks worth of Blogmas posts!