Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Holiday Essentials // On a bit of a budget

Suitcase - TKMaxx 
Stripe strapless top - Matalan*
White Cami - Matalan*
Black playsuit - Matalan*
Shorts - Matalan
Bag - Matalan 
Slider Sandals - Next
 Bikini - Seafolly

 Cat Sunglasses £4* Matalan

Carrera Sunglasses £98* Sunglasses Shop

 Vichy Capital Soleil Aftersun £11.50
Ambre Solaire Dry Mist & UV Sport £9
Bioderm Photoderm AKNMat SPF 30 £14
Vichy BB SPF 50 £16.50

This year we're not splashing out on a 'proper' holiday - We've just booked our Honeymoon for 2016 and we're looking forward to it like you wouldn't believe. However, we were lucky enough to have booked a wedding in Athens, and we leave tomorrow! Because its not really within our budget to splash out what with wedding and honeymoon saving, I'm massively taking advantage of some cheaper options, as well as investing in a few pieces that I know will serve me well on the honeymoon, like this Seafolly bikini thanks to the John Lewis sale, and these Carrera sunglasses! On holiday I always like to take two pairs of sunnies with me - A cheaper, by-the-pool pair, and a more established pair when I know they're not going to get smothered in sun cream. These Carrera glasses are a bit of a heavier twist on aviators and I love them, but also love this pair of tortoise-shell Matalan glasses, and they're only £4! I don't mind spending a bit more of Sunglasses if I can spend ages trying them on, and SunglassesShop has a pretty good system in place to be able to send and return for free (and lots)!

From the Matalan Holiday Shop, I chose a beach cover up dress, pair of loose fitted shorts (godsend in this weather, I've gone back for more), white cami, boob tube, bag and sunglasses and a playsuit for under £50 - And this is why its the place to check before running away on holiday - Even if it got ruined it wouldn't matter, but theres actually some really fashionable finds for a tiny price, win! I'm the same with clothes on holiday, take lots of cheaper 'holiday only' clothes that I probably won't get the chance to wear back home, and then take a few key pieces that probably cost a lot more!

Beauty wise, I'm based around sun and skincare. For sun protection I love the Ambre Solaire mist - Mainly because I'm a lazy soul and like to spray without having to pay too much attention to missing my clothes/bikini, but also because its super resilient and I'm terrified of sun damage! For my face I swear by Bioderma Photoderm, which is the only facial SPF that doesn't make my face shiny and/or white, and a tinted SPF by Vichy for days when we're venturing beyond the hotel pool. And if after that there is any sunburn (Its usually Dan), I like to take care of it thoroughly, and the Vichy Aftersun is by far the best I've ever tried. Its incredibly thick, and instantly cooling. 

Are you off anywhere nice this year? 
Light packer, or not so much? ;)
S xx

Friday, 3 July 2015

Nicky Clarke Diamond Hair // Pro Salon Styling Wand

 Nicky Clarke Diamond Shine Pro Salon Styling Wand £35*

Who would've thought that a styling wand infused with real crushed diamonds could really exist? Yep, its really a 'thing,' and although it seems like a bit of a gimmick, there is a reason for it.  Of course, theres the obvious luxury element to using a piece of styling equipment that you know has crushed diamonds within it, but the ultra hard surface means that you're going to get snag free, smooth curls, that don't take as long to achieve. The heat distribution is even, and the wand doesn't need to be held against your hair for as long. Strangely, I felt like my hair kind of 'stuck,' to the barrel too, so I didn't need to wrap or hold as tightly throughout although there was no problem removing it each time.
Natural curls, and less damage, is the result. Obviously any heat isn't beneficial, but if its not going to snag like my Enrapture curling wand, I'm happy (as beautiful as it is).

There are five heat settings, though the top is 210°C which I can't imagine anybody really needs (maybe if you have amazingly thick hair). I tend to keep mine set on two or three, and I'm happy with the results of a natural looking wave as pictured above. The styling wand has a swivel cord for easy usage, automatically switches itself off after a while if you accidentally leave it on (hey, it happens), and it is overall a gateway to a really quick and easy way to style your hair if you're in a bit of a rush, but want to look pretty decent - This is easily becoming one of my most used hair tools due to this! 

Have you tried using this yet?
Is it something you'd fancy trying?
S xx

Sunday, 28 June 2015

What I Wore // Denim Crops & Woburn Wanderings

Top - Topshop
Skirt - Topshop
Cardigan - Primark
Bag - New Look
Shoes - Converse
Sunglasses - Rayban

With A rare monday booked off work, Dan and I decided to do something a aside the usual shopping centre trip for a chain restaurant lunch. Instead, we drove to Woburn nearby with a plan to browse the antique shops and enjoy a coffee on the cobbles of an outdoor coffee shop. Imagine our confusion when absolutely everything was closed - It was like a ghost town! We found one open antique shop and then got back in the truck and drove to usual MK shopping centre. Obviously trying something different can potentially end up leading you back to your usual anyway - Oh well!

I absolutely adore this skirt but I'm not sure my body shape was made for it. It fits perfectly around the hips and is consequently a little loose around the waist - Which makes for lots of riding up whilst walking  around. This is now strictly in the 'not much walking going on' part of my wardrobe alongside the hard-to-walk-in shoes! So annoying! 

S xx

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Most Wanted // Summer Festival Fashion

Ombre Bag £14.50 Accessorize
Original Hunters £75 Outdoor and Country
Blouse $30 StyleMoi
Shorts £30 ASOS
Dungaree's £120 Whistles
Chelsea Hunters £101 Outdoor and Country
Sunglasses £14 Topshop
Stripe Top £90 Net-A-Porter
Swing Dress £20 ASOS
Watch £15 New Look

I'm not much of a festival go-er, but I've always fancied the idea of going to them - In fact, I think its going to have to be an addition to the bucket list. Problem lies within the fact that I don't seem to have any friends with the same music taste as me, so it might end up being painful for some of us, either way! I adore festival season though, mainly for the iconic summer outfits that always seem to perfectly scream 'festival.' If I ever needed a reason to make the most of my seemingly never ending denim and Hunter wellies collection, I'm pretty sure a festival is where its at. Add a parka and you've got a definition of functional fashion right there! Dungaree's might not be the height of function, but I'm still to get a pair - Who doesn't want to look like a Saved by the Bell throwback? I'm not huge on accessories (thinking functional) and prefer to keep things comfortable, so I've just added a watch and sunglasses -  Above you'll find a bunch of festival-esque items I'd gladly chuck in my rucksack for the weekend!

Are you heading to any festivals?
Which one is the best to go to?
S xx 

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Catwalk Tigi Fashionista Violet Shampoo for Blondes // Bye Bye Brassiness!



Tigi Fashionista Shampoo £13.50*
Tigi Fashionista Conditioner £15.50*

I seem to have a real problem with whether I want my hair brunette, or blonde, and the constant changing really doesn't do much for my hair condition, and its hard to keep my blonde looking bright and vibrant. Here, TIGI offer a colour safe, sulphate free, violet shampoo, which counteracts brassy tones to keep blonde hair how it was intended originally, for longer. Its also enriched with pearl extract and rice,

I am a huge fan of this violet shampoo and conditioner duo, and this one smells beautifully of grape juice. It leaves my hair feeling really smooth and weightless, although it can sometimes verge on flyaway. Its definitely making my blonde highlights last longer (I last had them done two months ago now), and keeping brassiness at bay, which is something I usually really struggle with. This, alongside the fact that an absolutely tiny amount is needed each time, means that I'll definitely buy it again - I feel like its saving me money in the long run!

The bottle old is a little frustrating. The idea is great, it twists shut, and to open too - just twist and squirt. But, if you twist just a tiny bit too far, the whole thing falls off, which isn't ideal if you're sitting in a bath like I so often am. More often than not now, I take the whole lid off and use it as a usual bottle, and it really wouldn't be an issue that'd stop me from buying the duo again. 

And just a little heads up: you can get the 750ml shampoo and conditioner for £29 at the minute here. Might be time for me to reorder again already! 

S xx

Sunday, 31 May 2015

What I Wore // Pastel Midi and Zebra Sandals




Dress - ASOS
Belt - Topshop
Jacket - Primark
Sandals - Jones*

The weather is somewhat unpredictable at the moment, but I'm getting myself into summer mode and sticking with it anyway. I spend far too long in a week in different copies of the same uniform, that I forget whats lurking in my wardrobe. I ordered this dress just before Christmas and had never had the chance to wear it, but its just the perfect summer dress! 
I feel like I've completely moved away from mini dresses and skirts for good, its all about the midi's - My wardrobe has completely changed from my late teens, I wouldn't have dreamed of this! 
In a bit of a rush, I threw this pastel dress on (which happens to match perfectly to my watering can. This pleases me for some reason), with these pretty awesome zebra print sandals. I've always wanted some like this, but have always admitted to myself that they'd not really go with much. Screw it I say, I'm wearing them forever! 

Are you embracing 'spring/summer' yet?
S xx

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Yankee Cafe Culture Collection // Tasty Scents


Small Cafe Culture Yankee Candles - £7.99 each*

Quite impartial to a candle or three, I was delighted to find this new trio of yankee candles on my doorstep recently. Being the foodie that I am, I'm also not one to turn away a treat, so by putting the two together, Yankee have got my attention with their new cafe culture range, for sure. Heres the lowdown on the new range, though I'd probably advise against it if you're feeling peckish. 

My favourite of the three has to be Tarte Tatin. Think red apple, spices, vanilla and caramel bunged together in a jar to create a fruity sweet scent with a biscuit base, without being christmassy. If you like apple crumble or pie, you'll like this one. 

Cappuccino Truffle, I'm still trying to figure out. I'm not a lover of anything coffee, or anything fake chocolate scented, so this one crinkled my nose at the thought of it. However, they've somehow turned this into a beautiful soothing bittersweet scent which is quite the novelty! 

And then theres Pain Au Raisin, the safe one, and almost stole the favourite spot. A true fresh bakery scent, though it makes me want to eat it. Have you ever been into a Cinnabon shop? If not, imagine soaked raisins in a buttery vanilla dough, topped with cinnamon and sugar. Yum! 

Yankee Candle are running a competition at the moment with winners every weekend, to win a European city break for 2, and a bunch of Nescafe Dolce Gusto machines. The prize draw can be entered every day until the end of May! 

Have you tried any of these yet?
Which do you think you'd go for?
S xx

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Night In Alone // The Best Way To Pamper Yourself

This weekend has been the first weekend that I've not been on call and we've not had a wedding in absolutely ages. So I've taken the opportunity to catch up on some blogging photos, and give myself a really good pamper, forgetting about our wedding planning for a while. I can't put into words just how weird it feels to lay on the sofa watching TV. It feels so naughty! Here are a few of the things that I find necessary for what I'd call a successful pamper day.

Clean the house and finish the chores // Sounds silly, but I find this so therapeutic, and I can't even begin to relax until I've had a thorough clean, a few loads of washing, and taken the dog for a walk.

Get some fresh flowers // Something I've vowed to start spending just a few pounds at least on each week, fresh flowers. The smell of this Debenhams flower delivery took over the whole house for a week, and they've really brightened the place up, too. If you fancy a treat or know someone that could do with one, you can get 25% off with the code: DFBLOG25

Light candles // Instant ambience and a ruddy good whiff too - Opt for a calming scent like Lavender for top relaxation points.

Luxury bath // A luxury bath with some luxury products makes the world of the difference to my self wellbeing, its simple. Lashings of Laura Mercier's ambre vanilla bath honey, a resurfacing face mask from Elemis, and their frangipanis body scrub for silky smooth skin. (honestly they're all worth every penny).

A few treats // Chocolate and a bit of prosecco with floating frozen pomegranates. Thanks Jacamo for a few pamper treats for a night in as part of their Shoe-Duction campaign, you enablers, you. Dan was actually supposed to get himself off on the right foot (gettit)? preparing a romantic date night for me! Did he heck? 

Film/Book // I don't think I'll ever relax enough to be able to tuck into a book without being distracted and never finishing it, but I quite like sticking a mindless rom-com on and cuddling up to my cushions. I tend to read books exclusively on holiday. Actually, screw this whole list, holiday is the way forward for a proper pamper. This is just a cheaper alternative perhaps. Damn wedding planning.

Does this sound familiar? 
What do you do to relax? I could get used to this! 
S xx