Monday 29 June 2015

A Summery Lilac Nails Of The Day - FNUG - Glamazonian*

Hi everyone x I'm back x I'm still not feeling 100% but I thought I'd return with a nice and happy nails of the day post. Looking at the UK weather forecast for the rest of the week it does appear as though summer is here at last, and to celebrate I thought I'd paint my nails in lovely shade from My Pure that screams summer.

FNUG Nail Polish in 45 Glamazonian is a beautiful, creamy, pastel lilac. I love wearing shades like this all year round, but in the summer I think that a pretty pastel nail is a must have. I love bright nails but pastel shades are just a little bit smarter and a bit more sophisticated.

Containing both caviar and silica as well as vitamins A, D, E, and B, Danish brand FNUG's polishes and big 3 free and they are designed to help strengthen and condition the nails.

The first coat was a little bit streaky which is pretty common with cream polishes, but it just needed one more coat to produce the smooth even finish that you can see here. Despite the muggy weather over the last few days, the dry time was excellent and after 3 days it's still wearing well.

I have to say that so far I'm yet to be disappointed in a polish from this brand. They've all applied well, dried quickly and above all they've lasted. There are so many more shades that I still want to try so you can expect to see some more FNUG polishes on the blog in future. FNUG Nail Polish in Glamazonian retails at £12 for an 8.5ml bottle from My Pure. Are you a bright or a pastel girl? Let me know below x 


Monday 22 June 2015

Thursday 18 June 2015

My NARS Giveaway Winner Revealed

Hi Everyone x I'm so sorry for the delay but it's time to announce the winner of my birthday giveaway. I received over 2,000 entries but unfortunately there can only be one winner, and the winner of my NARS And God Created The Woman Eye Kit, picked via Rafflecopter is...

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rebecca Nisbet

Congratulations Rebecca x I will be contacting you later today for your details x If you weren't lucky enough to win this time I'm sorry :( Don't worry I have plenty more giveaways planned x Thanks for reading and  thanks for subscribing x 

Monday 15 June 2015

A Collective Clothing Haul Featuring Next, H&M And More

When you're unhappy with your appearance, it changes everything. For a girl that normally loves clothes shopping and fashion, my last few shopping trips have left me feeling miserable and uninspired. I compare myself to others way too often and the thought of shopping in actual shops at the moment is depressing the hell out of me, especially when you can't find anything above a size 14 in Primark, so I did what any sensible person would do and turned to online shopping.

Trying something on in your own home is a much better way to look at something objectively. If you're having a rubbish day, you can leave the package until you feel as though you're in a better place. Everything in this haul bar one item was an online purchase, and even though I'm feeling a bit mehh I managed to get a few practical items, and a few fun items that I'll enjoy wearing. Oh and the trousers and the skirt all have an elasticated waist so even if I do lose a bit of weight they can be easily altered - see despite my negativity I'm still trying to be a practical and sensible fashionista :)

I'm going to start off with one of the fun pieces and I said in my previous beauty review post I love bright colours, and I love vibrant prints, so this top fits the bill perfectly.

It was something that I ordered from QVC of all places. When you think of QVC and fashion, you probably think like I did that they only se;; comfy, and casual clothing for those who are getting on in years. Well you couldn't be more wrong, okay they do sell ranges that are probably more appropriate to someone of say my mum's age but I'm a firm believer that you can find good wardrobe pieces in the most unexpected of places. QVC UK currently sells BIBA, a range by Trinny and Susannah, and a diffusion range from top designer, Issac Mizrahi, as well as exclusive, quirky pieces from internationally renowned designers such as Butler & Wilson, and Bob Mackie.

Although American designer Bod Mackie is probably better known for his work with celebrities such as Pink and Diana Ross, and of course as the designer of Cher's 1988 Oscar costume, he also designs a line exclusive for QVC. Wearable Art By Bob Mackie is a line of easy to wear, eye catching pieces, that showcase both his design and artistic talent.

This top is made of a soft, silky, slinky type fabric that feels beautiful against the skin. I love the psychedelic prints that he uses, and for someone who isn't normally a pink fan, I love the almost, clashing colour combination. Unfortunately this was a clearance item and no longer seems to be available on the QVC website but if like me you love quirky, retro and bright prints, it could be a brand to consider.

I'm all about colour and something that seems to appear every summer is neon. I love brights and whilst neon isn't always the easiest thing to wear, this shirt from the Definitions brand at both Very and Littlewoods seems to have got it spot on.

This sheer white shirt features a floral design in both bright and neon shades. My pictures aren't really doing the colours justice but this is an easy way to wear neon if your scared of wearing block colours.

Unless you're brave you would probably need to wear something underneath it, but I've mainly been wearing it with skinny jeans and sandals, one of my go to combinations that suits a variety of occasions.

I'm a bit obsessed with shirts and florals at the minute so as well as ordering another Definitions shirt I also ordered this one from Next.

With an ecru background this long sleeved shirt buttons half way down, and is covered in an exotic floral print.

This shirt was £20 and it also comes in a tan colour way. This pattern seems to be pretty popular with Next this season and you can also get a sleeveless shirt, and a three quarter sleeve top in the same print.

One online store that delights and annoys the hell out of me in equal measure is H&M. I really like their clothes for basics and for something a bit different. Their online store drives me nuts though - they've only recently got a search option and please don't order anything if you want it in a hurry, but the website has a good selection, and it offers the full range of sizes, so for me more often than not it's worth the risk. This time round I got a few basics including some of these.

Harem pants are something that you either love or hate but I'm a huge fan. They're comfy and in the summer they can be a bit cooler than leggings, speaking of which...

Yup, leggings, but these are very different to the basic leggings that I normally wear around the house. Not only do they have a high waist but they are also made of a thicker, more substantial material and they almost seem to suck you in a bit, without being skin tight. They are a bit dressier than my normal leggings and I would be happy to wear these outside of the house.

Something else that divides opinion is combat or cargo pants. I haven't worn them for quite a while now but I've seen so many images of them being used as part of the utility / sports chic trend that I thought I would give them another go. I'm planning on wearing them maybe with a vest and some tan leather sandals but we'll see.

As much as I love pattern I'm not that confident about wearing it on my bottom half, in fact Mummy Lou embraced the patterned trouser trend way before I did, but once I'd tried it I couldn't get enough. These are my fourth pair from H&M and I think that they are probably the boldest to date. I love the warm colours and the almost Moroccan type print

The last thing that I got from H&M was a skirt. It's navy blue and has front pockets and an elasticated waist. It's very slouchy and perfect for the summer months.

It was £24.99 which I think is expensive for what it is and annoyingly it's now on sale at just £12, but guess who's now ordered the blush pink version? Yes me!

From something practical to something a little bit silly, a little slogan t-shirt from ebay.

I love this tee, and as someone who feels more confident online, than what they do in real life, it was a must. You can get these t-shirts from a variety of ebay sellers but this was the seller I used, and it was £9.99 with free postage.

My final online purchase was something from the George range at Asda. I always have a look through the rails when I'm in store but I haven't been in for a while so I had a little look online and this midi skirt literally jumped out at me.

Described as red, it's a really vibrant orange. It has an elasticated waist and it's made of a scuba type fabric, and it has two faux zippered pockets on the front. It was just £14 and you can still find it here on the Asda Direct website.

I don't know whether it's to do with the change in the weather or down to an attempt to lift my mood? but I'm really loving orange at the moment. It's such a happy colour and my final clothing purchase and the only purchase physically done in a shop, is in a fabulous, zingy orange colour.

It's just a basic bat wing cardigan, nothing exciting, but when I saw it on a Primark sale rack its colour dragged me in and I couldn't leave without it. It was only £5 reduced from £10 so it was a bargain. I love wearing orange in the Autumn to match the leaves as well so this is a buy that should easily take me right through to October and beyond.

If you want to see all of my buys in a bit more detail then you can watch the accompanying video that I've made especially for you x

Thanks for reading and hopefully watching, and don't forget to follow and subscribe and leave me your thoughts below xx

Saturday 13 June 2015

The Perfect Summer Blush Courtesy Of Essence*

Although today is cloudy and grey at least for the last couple of days, it's felt as though summer is here at last -The sun's shone, and it's been pleasantly warm, and dry. Will it last? who knows but it's certainly made me feel a little brighter.

I've been a reading a few blog posts lately about how you change your make up for summer and it's got me thinking. I'm definitely not one of those people that has a summer and a winter make up bag but I do make a couple of changes here and there

I probably tend to wear less make up in the warmer months but the make up that I do wear has to not only last but it also needs to adapt to my changing skin tone and the changes in lighting and in fashion. 

I'm a huge fan of bright colours, as anyone that has ever met me would probably tell you, but in the summer everyone has free reign to wear brighter colours both in their clothing and in their make up. In the summer I tend to move away from my traditional neutral face palette and I tend to play with colour a little bit more. Someone once said that you should only wear blusher the same colour as your cheeks would naturally flush, well I think that's rubbish!.I love experimenting with different blush tones depending on my outfit, the rest of my make up and the changing seasons , but when it comes to the summer time, it's peaches and corals that I reach for.

I have a lot of peaches and corals in my collection but lately I've been reaching for this budget offering from Essence.

Essence Silky Touch Blush is 90 Summer Dreaming is perfectly named, it's one of those gorgeous bright, summer, peachy ,corals with just a hint of shimmer, that everybody needs in their collection.

In a world where packaging is everything, the clear plastic packaging, maybe wouldn't win any awards for glamour or style, but it's practical and functional, a little bit like the blusher inside.

Equally at home when worn for a night out, or for summer sightseeing, Summer Dreaming has a soft, smooth texture, and pigmentation that some higher end brands would crave.

It blends effortlessly into the skin, and leaves the cheeks with a beautiful wash of peach.

This is a pretty blusher that would deserve a place in any summer make up bag no matter what your budget, age or skin colour. Essence Silky Touch Blush in 90 Summer Dreaming retails at just £2.50 for a 5g compact. A fabulous price and a great blusher, what more could you want? If your in the UK , you can get your own, either from an Essence stand alone store, or via Wilko or the Wilko website. Are you a fan of peachy, coral blusher? Let me know x 


Tuesday 9 June 2015

A Shoe And Accessory Haul Featuring Mel, Primark And More

This week on the blog I'm going to make a huge effort to get a few outstanding posts done including some long awaited reviews and a few belated hauls. I'm really conscious that it looks like I've been shopping non stop but all of the items in this haul and in the next one I'm going to show you have been picked up over the last couple of months. It's quite scary when you realise just how much you can buy with just the odd item here and there, it all adds up to a lot of stuff eek.

Anyway this is the first of two fashion hauls, I might do a video to accompany the next one which is a clothes haul but it will definitely be live this week, but in the meantime this one is all about shoes and accessories.

One of my earliest ever memories is sitting on the floor at the Tommy Ball's shoe warehouse in Blackburn, amongst a rack of shoes - we regularly used to make the trip down to Lancashire and I think it's one of the reasons why I'm so obsessed with shoes. Give or take a bit of swelling, shoes will always fit you no matter what your size, and I love them for that.

One of my favourite shoe brands is Mel, the diffusion line of rubber shoe manufacturer Melissa. Rubber shoes I hear you cry? Well yes and if you haven't tried them you should I have a few pairs of their pumps and some of their flip flops and they are so comfortable. My feet have never felt overtly sweaty in them and smell of bubblegum.

As you might have seen in one of my most recent posts I'm a huge fan of catalogue shopping, and both me and my mum have a few catalogue accounts, one of which is Littlewoods. Recently they sent me a discount voucher which to be honest I wasn't going to use until I had a look at the shoe section and saw these.

These are the Mel Flower Flip Flops, and I love them I'm a huge fan of daises as you probably now and I just loved the sharpness of the black, white and yellow design. These were £32 full price, and although they don't have them on the Littlewoods site, Top Shop also stocks them in a bright yellow.

Naughty LouLou, I couldn't just stop at one pair though could I, I also ordered and subsequently kept these ones too.

These are the Mel Honey 3 Flower Detail Flip Flops, and they originally retailed at £30. I already have some Mel ballet flats with a similar design and they remind me quite a bit of the Chanel Camellia's.

I think I'm slightly obsessed with Mel and Melissa shoes and I can definitely see myself adding to my collection this summer. Very have a similar range to Littlewoods, and Top Shop and Dorothy Perkins also have a few nice styles, as do ASOS who stock the higher end Melissa line and a few designer collaborations. Hmm I think I might get some more ballet flats if I'm honest, I wear my black bow ones an awful lot, so they would probably be a better investment than buying yet more flip flops.

Speaking of flip flops, I also bought a pair from Primark. As well as flip flops in all the basic colours, this year they're also doing a character range with the likes of Minnie Mouse and Frozen. I liked them but I went for something from the men's department.

Minions! sometime large feet have their advantages, I usually take between a 7 and an 8 depending on the brand, and the Men's size small fitted perfectly. I loved the Minion Havaianas but I've only ever seen them in children's sizes so at just £3 these were a great alternative. As yet I'm not going away this year but I'm such a child and I'm so excited for the Minions movies that I just had to pick these up.

Pair of shoes number 4 and it's a pair of Converse. I only have one other pair of Converse which are
hi tops, and whilst I do like them, they can sometimes be a pain to put on when your in a rush, with all of the laces, so I tend to reach for my low rise Converse a likes instead.

I couldn't quite make my mind between the navy and the white, but in the interests of practicality of went for the navy. My two favourite colours at the moment are probably navy and orange, which are both very different but great summer colours in their own right. The navy and white combination is a real classic and I know that I will wear these an awful lot, in fact I may have already worn them in some pics that I've had taken for an upcoming outfit post - so keep your eyes peeled and see if you can spot them.

From shoes to handbags, and believe me I love my bags just as much. From designer bags to budget totes, a good bag can make a real difference to any outfit and at the moment I'm loving all the quirky bags that out there. From bags that are shaped liked lips, to ones shaped like fruit and even perfume bottles.

I saw this in the Next Spring sale and I had to have it. I have no idea where I'll use it but I needed it. Its a hard plastic box clutch in the shape of a perfume bottle, and it has label picked out in faux leather. It opened with a snap clasp at the lid and it has a removable chain strap so you can wear it two ways.

I think I paid £12 for this but unfortunately I can't find it on the Next website anymore but you never know it might still be available in store. They also did a playing card bag and a postcard and a Swizzles bag that were very similar in design.

I also got another bag from the Next sale and this one is still a clutch but it's a bit more practical. Again it's a clutch but this time it's just a flat zip up pouch in an almost exotic floral design with a tan zip pull. Apologies but I can't remember how much it was but this too has disappeared from the Next site.

Another Next sale purchase was this necklace. This was originally £40 but I paid £12. I love statement necklaces and this one definitely fits the bill.

It's a really dramatic multi-layer piece with all different types and colours of chain and charms hanging from a gold tone chain. It's quite heavy to wear but it's a real impact piece. Again this is no longer online but you may still be able to pick it up in store or in a Next Clearance.

My final accessory, shoe and jewellery purchase came from...Poundland! I saw this necklace from their Purple Ivy range on a few instagram post and again I love the multi layered look

It's made of silver tone and gunmetal and features various different chain types, and some spike charms. I think it;s really decent for the price and it certainly looks like you would have paid more than £1 for it x

I hope you've enjoyed this little haul, my next haul post will be a collective fashion haul, so you'll either see that up next or some beauty content x Thanks for reading and if you have any questions please leave me a comment x

Monday 8 June 2015

My New Weight Loss Journey Featuring XLS Medical Max Strength* - Part 1

I guess I'm beginning to sound a bit like a broken record with so many false dawns and false starts, but last week I restarted my weight loss journey.Over the last 12 months or so it's been a bit stop / start but on my birthday of all days I decided that I needed to make some changes in all areas of my life.

Why weight loss? well I'm officially classed as obese, bah humbug you should be happy what ever your size, people shouldn't be labelled and all that. Fine if you're happy and you have that self confidence but not so much if you're like me and looking the mirror at times makes you feel miserable.

Recently I attended a press event and I the night before I literally burst into tears as I tried to find something that looked decent and didn't highlight my wobbly tummy and my bum. Okay I was probably being a bit dramatic but if you don't feel comfortable in your own skin, all the reassurances and common sense in the world won't make one bit of difference. Believe me I've tried, I admire and love so many plus size / eff your beauty standards bloggers but when you're hating on yourself as much as I have been lately it's impossible to see anything positive about the way you look.

I've never had a lot of self confidence, or confidence in my appearance, even many moons ago when I was a size 8, so why do I think it will make a difference now? Well I'm older and maybe a little bit wiser, I know that being a bit slimmer isn't going to change my life dramatically but I need to at least give it a try for my health, if not for my self confidence.

I didn't want this to be an Oh Woe Is Me post, so I'm sorry if it's heading that way but losing weigh isn't the easy thing that some people make it out to be. It's a physical and emotional journey that effects every part of your life

I've been told on many occasions by my GP and my hospital specialist that it's will be hard for me to lose weight due to my illness, lack of exercise and my medication but I'm going to give it my best shot and I fully intend to prove them wrong.

So how am I going to be doing it? Well pretty much the same way that I've done it in the past, watching what I eat, making healthy choices, and less snacking. I did consider trying a slimming club but the expense put me off and I know that this method works for me - Many moons ago I lost 4 stone doing something similar so despite the obstacles now in my path I know it can be done.

This time round though I do have a little bit of a support. A month or so ago now I was invited down to London to meet Denise Van Outen, who is the brand ambassador for weight loss tablet XLS Medical Max Strength. Unfortunately because I'm a northerner travelling down to London the majority of times just isn't possible so the PR company gave me the opportunity to take part in the week XLS Medical Get Back To The Real You, 12 week challenge, and sent me three months supply of the XLS Medical Max Strength supplements*

Diet pills and supplements have always been controversial but for me I need a kick start. I'm going to talk more about what they do and who they are for in a future but be rest assured these aren't just some random pills I've got off the internet. XLS Medical are the biggest weight loss brand in Europe and their products are available in most major pharmacies. My BMI is high enough and I've checked with my GP so I'm good to go.

I'm not going it alone though, every person who buys XLS Medical Max Strength can either log onto their website or download the app, and register for their free support programme, to get support, meal tips and advice from their in house dietician Jodie Relf. I'm going to be speaking to the XLS team once a week via email and I think that their support will be invaluable.

I've been taking four tablets a day for the past week, and in my first week I've lost 5 pounds. Have the tablets helped? I'm not sure yet but I've experienced no side effects as yet so all's well. I'm not going to be doing a weekly update post or anything like that, instead I'm going to be updating my instagram every Monday with how much I've lost or gained, and I'm going to be doing a monthly post to keep you updated. My next post will be in around four week time and as well as updating you on my progress I'll also be explaining a bit more about XLS Max Strength how they work, the science behind them,and who can use them, but if you want to find out more please have a look at their website x

So although I'm going down a slightly controversial route to some, hopefully it's going to give me the kick start that I need x Thanks for your support as per usual and thanks for reading and I'll see you soon with either a beauty or fashion post depending on how I'm feeling xx