Tuesday, 30 June 2015

INSTAGRAM: JUNE 2015


Urban Jungle • Haworthia • Working Breakfast • Chocolate Chip Cookie Bowl • Style Details • Porter Magazine • Serenity • Cocio Chocolate Milk • A Sweet Gift from La Roche Posay • First BBQ of the Year • Lazy Sundays • Starbucks Date • Lady Danger • Jurassic World • Burgers and Mai Tais • My Little Baby in the Sunshine

My goodness, June has been busy! I feel like I have so much to talk about and not enough time to fit it all in...

At the beginning of the month my little doggie had an operation. We thought it was just going to be a simple tooth cleaning procedure (terriers have notoriously bad teeth) but turns out it was a bit more serious than that. She ended up having 14 - yes, f o u r t e e n - teeth taken out as well as the initial cleaning. Safe to say she was totally spaced out when she arrived home. Thankfully though, she was back to her normal self pretty much the next day. And it seems that she must have been in quite a lot of pain before she had those teeth taken out because she absolutely loves chewing rawhide and dentastix now - she's definitely a much happier dog, even if she is a bit gummy!

My parents were married for 32 years on the 18th, which I thought was worth a mention in this month's roundup. I love hearing about couples who have been together for the majority of their lives. It gives me so much hope, haha! They celebrated by going out for lunch and then my Dad bought my Mum a tree. You're probably thinking "what?" - it is a bit strange, I'll grant you. But years ago, before we redid the house and garden, my Mum had a weeping flowering cherry tree that she absolutely loved. It was in the middle of the garden and unfortunately had to be gotten rid of when the garden got redone. So now we have a new one! It's really small at the moment, but it's supposed to grow huge over a 20 year span. I thought it was quite a sweet gesture from my Dad. Romance isn't dead, eh?

I've had a couple of weekends off in a row this month, which has been really lovely. I love having weekends off, mostly because it gives me a chance to catch up with old friends who work the standard 9-5. We went to see Jurassic World (dinosaurs and Chris Pratt - yes please!) and then had dinner at a restaurant I hadn't been to since I was a kid, although this time I could have all the hot sauce and cocktails I could handle! I miss being able to see friends whenever I want, but it kind of makes the time you do get with them that much more special. It will be a while until I get to do it again, because I'm not allowed any time off work the entire summer. Ugh, it's going to be hard work! So if I'm lacking on blog posts for the next few months, you know why. Hey, maybe I'll even drop another 2 dress sizes by September, who knows!

Speaking of dresses and slimming down, my best friend set a date for her wedding this week and asked me to be her maid of honour. I'm so excited and, well, honoured. I haven't seen her in the longest time (we're talking a few years here) because she lives in Yorkshire and I'm right on the South coast. I've found that long distance friendships are just as difficult as long distance relationships. It's just so expensive to travel back and forth often, but now that the wedding wheels have been set in motion, I'm hoping to be there for dress fittings, cake tastings, and the like. Plus, I'm always on the end of the phone and constantly plying her with ideas on Pinterest! And we're planning to cross off another city from my wanderlust list - Prague for the hen do, ahhh! 

On a final note, Summer is finally here! I mean, how gorgeous is this weather the UK is having right now? 33ÂșC in London tomorrow? Holy moly! I love days where there isn't a cloud in the sky but still a refreshing breeze coming off the sea. It's one of the reasons why I love living by the seaside, as you can see by all the photographs I take at the beach!

I think we'll leave this rambling roundup here! Hope you've had a lovely June as well - what have you all been up to?
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Friday, 12 June 2015

FIVE MAC LIPSTICKS FOR SUMMER


This time last year I wrote a post about my MAC lipstick collection, and it's still my most-viewed, most-commented-on post to date. I mean, who doesn't love a MAC lippie, right? Well, you guys clearly do! I thought I would narrow it down a bit this time around, and seeing as I've only added the coveted vampy Diva, and pinky-nudes like Brave, Modesty, Twig and Velvet Teddy to my collection in the past year I figured I would list my five favourite bold lipsticks for summer instead!

The warmer weather and gorgeous sunshine we get in the summer months definitely compliments any of the following lipstick shades. I love to wear a bold lip in the summer and I'm sure that I'm not the only one. These choices all look especially pretty with a tan (fake or not!) and will surely get you noticed down the beach.


LADY DANGER
This is actually my go-to vivid red lipstick any time of the year but I think it really comes to life when the sun comes out. It has a gorgeous orange tinge to it, and is a matte finish but don't let that put you off. It can look quite lovely on its own, but can be quite drying so be sure to whack on some lip balm before application. I sometimes blend Lady Danger on top of MAC Redd lip pencil to create a subtle ombre effect too.


MORANGE
I think this is like the more audacious sister to Lady Danger. An intense "loudmouth" orange shade, this amplified lipstick is not for the faint-hearted. All the more reason for this little baby to be on my bold list. I just love the creamy formula and the way it just glides on to the lips without any tugging like a lot of the matte variants. This one looks especially good with a tan. Definitely give this one a go if you're feeling daring.


IMPASSIONED
This shade is described as "amped-up fuchsia" and I couldn't agree more. It probably sounds silly, but I think Impassioned is the least bold of my picks yet it still has something that makes me love it. Not so much in-your-face, more sitting pretty poolside with a strawberry daiquiri. Yes please!


CANDY YUM-YUM
If you want to make a statement this summer then definitely stick on the neon pink. The colour tint of this lipstick is just insane - so amazingly pigmented and the staying power is equally impressive. I really love to wear Candy Yum-Yum from day to night because the pigmentation is so good, and I like the fact that you don't have to keep reapplying it throughout the duration of wear. Such a fun, playful colour!


SHOW ORCHID
I fell in love with this shade last year and now summer is on its way Show Orchid is certainly getting its revival. Dare I say that it’s bloomin' gorgeous? The colour is just beautiful - vivid hot pink with a pretty purple undertone - and it truly makes me feel awesome when I wear it. It's amazing how much a single product can increase your confidence. And the fact that it's an amplified creme formula is even better. Best in show, for sure!


Do you prefer a bolder lip in the summer? What are your favourite shades?
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Saturday, 6 June 2015

MY EXPERIENCE WITH THE PILL

Hello everyone, today I wanted to talk about something a bit more personal - perhaps even controversial? I don't know, there's always a sharp intake of breathe when anyone mentions sexual health, periods, or anything of that nature, but I feel like I wanted to share my experiences with you. 

Let's get this out of the way. We're women. We have uteruses and every month we bleed from them. Or at least we're supposed to. I have been on the same contraceptive pill, Microgynon 30, since I was teenager. For more than 7 years. That's 14 six month check-ups at the doctors... 14 mornings I've feared being told that I'm too heavy for a repeat prescription, or that my blood pressure is too high, or that I have polycystic ovaries and I'm infertile. I can't help but think of the worst situations when actually everything has been absolutely fine every time.

I initially went to the doctors at 16 to see what they could do to regulate my menstrual cycle. I would go four or five months before having a period and then when it did arrive, it was always quite heavy and painful. I was convinced at the time that it was normal as I was still a teenager and was obviously still getting used to my cycle. I actually had my first period aged 13, and it was pretty regular for a while so I didn't worry. But when I started dating my first serious boyfriend I knew that it would be better to kill two birds with one stone, and see about taking a combined pill.
I'll be honest with you, my sexual history isn't anything to write home about. I've had two serious boyfriends in the last 7 years, and a couple of casual encounters (for which I'm grateful I took the pill religiously) and I'm not in a relationship right now so I don't feel the need for a contraceptive. I'm seriously considering getting an implant instead if I were to get into a serious relationship in the near future, but that's another issue entirely. It's funny how weird my nurses were about it though. Every time I went for my check-up they would always ask me about how I was getting on with the Microgynon as a contraceptive and not as a period regulator - as if preventing pregnancy was more important than the fear of infertility in a 20-something young woman. I mean, I think they're both pretty important personally.

So I'm 23 years old now, and in May I decided to finish my final pill packet and not go back to the doctor. I had a chat with my Mum before settling on this decision, by the way. I think it's good to talk about these things with someone close to you because you know you're getting an honest opinion and therefore serious advice. It's kind of like my own little experiment, but I want to see how I get on without relying on a regulator. Don't get me wrong Microgynon has not created any real problems for me, other than the odd outbreak or bout of weight gain. After 7 years of my periods appearing like clockwork I'm just interested to see whether the pill has worked like it should have, whether my skin will clear up, and whether it will help me lose a bit of weight too. It's early days but only you truly know your body. And I seriously think my body is telling me that I need to come off the pill and let nature take its course, at least for a few months. The good thing about our NHS is that the option is always there to go back to the doctor and try something else if it hasn't worked.

Well, I hope this wasn't too TMI. I tried to stick with the bare minimum of gross but sometimes you have to be honest, right? I would really love to know your experiences with this issue. Us women all have periods, and we (mostly) all have sex - I just wondered what your opinions were on contraceptive pills. Do you use them as period regulators as well? Do you use them solely as regulators? It's an interesting topic to talk about, I think. 
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Tuesday, 2 June 2015

ICONEMESIS

I'm sure quite a few of you have heard of Iconemesis, but for those of you who haven't allow me to enlighten you.

"Iconemesis is a British brand focusing primarily on iPhone cases. Launched in the summer of 2011, we collaborate with independent artists and illustrators to create a unique and fashionable collection of iPhone cases. Our ambition is to become the number one case brand in the UK and we plan to achieve this by growing our design range, working with influential designers and growing the numbers of visitors to our website."

That's where I come in, I guess! I was contacted a few weeks ago by Iconemesis asking if I would like to select an iPhone case to sample. I'm always up for new cases as I'm notorious for dropping my phone, so anything to avoid breaking the actual device is welcomed by me. I feel like I've started a small collection of cases recently. It kind of takes me back to my Nokia 3210 days when it was so stylish to swap your case every day - did anyone else have tons of cases? I think my most-used case was a Tigger one, but that's a different story...

Their current collection is small, but every design is lovely and on the market for a very decent price. They offer cases for the iPhone 5/5s, 5c, 6 and 6 Plus and every design is branded with the gold Iconemesis logo. I went for the Cat Sims Feathers iPhone 5/5s case*, which I really love. It fits snuggly on my iPhone 5 and is oh-so-sturdy (I'm talking hard plastic here) so I've yet to smash my phone during an all-too-often clumsy episode. 

At the moment they have a sale on, where older style cases are a third of the price! There are also some really awesome designs for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, which I'm keeping my eye on for when I upgrade soon - the pineapple, doughnuts and ice-cream ones in particular caught my eye! Food... What a surprise!

*PR Sample
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