The Right Stripes

I’m in a bit of a Catch-22 when it comes to outfit posts right now, whilst on the one hand the evenings are getting lighter and I’m getting more chance to photograph things, I’m also battling against ever decreasing body confidence and a general lack of inspiration in what to wear on weekends- or rather an overload of things I want to wear and share. Now I’m in work 9-5 the chance to wear casual clothes is becoming a rare thing, and by the time I get home I’m generally so dishevelled and worn out that all I want to sling on is jogging bottoms or pyjamas.

I did manage to squish my demons aside last weekend though and got a few snaps of a dress that made up part of a Pull & Bear order I placed back in January, and actually braving the camera wasn’t as bad as I feared. I really want to get back in to sharing more of my personal style as and when I can, it was all I blogged about when I first started but somehow I fell in to a pit of sponsored content when I wasn’t working and needed the money. Now I no longer rely on my blog for income it’s time to get back to my roots.

Pull & Bear is one of my go-to shops for affordable pieces like this dress, at £12.99 I picked up this striped dress in a floral pattern as well. It’s a bit shorter than I would have liked, definitely a no go for work, but for slightly smarter casual style it’s ideal.

I’ve been avoiding stripes lately (aforementioned body image woes to blame) but this vertical, fine striped print is actually pretty flattering and it makes a nice change to my usual print preferences. I paired the dress with my favourite ankle boots from Banana Republic, some old faithful Primark opaques and my new ruby necklace- a valentines gift from Bob and wore this for a much needed hit of retail therapy with my Mum. Retail therapy that wasn’t overly successful, but mother and daughter time is definitely priceless.

Hopefully as the weather continues to brighten, and as my inspiration and motivation starts to return I can keep up the pace of at least one outfit post a week- let me know in the comments if there are any other directions you’d like to see the blog take. I have a few ideas up my sleeve but have so far lacked time to implement them.

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Skincare Sorted with Cetaphil at Superdrug

Last year one of my main goals was to sort out my skincare, and I did manage for about three months, then products ran out, life became busier and I got a whole lot lazier about it.
This year I’m vowing to do the same, I’ve started to get breakouts when I’m stressed or hormonal- not to mention the fact I’m now thirty and I can’t fall back on the luck of youth being on my side. Thankfully Superdrug came to the rescue by sending me a selection of products from Cetaphil, a brand I’ve heard a lot about but not yet got round to trying thanks to my local store having only just (literally days after the products arrived) starting to stock it.
I was sent three products from the range- the Moisturising Cream, the Gentle Skin Cleanser and the Moisturising Lotion. I’ve spent the last couple of weeks testing out all of the products and I’ve popped my thoughts on each below.
Out of the three products I was sent I think the Moisturising Cream is my favourite. This is a rich and intensive moisturiser perfect for combating my dried out winter skin. It can be used on both face and body and I’ve found it an absolute godsend on my hands which really suffer in the cold weather. I’ve also been using it last thing at night once I’ve taken my makeup off, it sinks in so quickly meaning I go to bed feeling smooth and soft rather than just sticky and when I wake up my skin is soft and soothed rather than irritated, which I had been noticing more and more prior to starting using this cream.
Next up, the Gentle Skin Cleanser was the product I was most wary of trying. I tend to find most cleaners dry out my skin and make them feel tight but I’m happy to report that this isn’t the case. As this is a product for both face and body I tend to use it in the shower to wash my face and as a body wash.
It claims to sooth as it cleans and I would agree that it does, my skin certainly feels fresh and happy after using this without a hint of irritation. As with all Cetaphil products this is fragrance free and suitable for even the most sensitive of skin. This is definitely a product I’ll be repurchasing- I’ve never found an all in one shower product that I’ve loved before.
Finally, the Moisturising Lotion. This is a super light product that is once again suited for face and body. I’ve been using this in the morning before doing my makeup and I’ve found it makes a huge difference- I’ve certainly noticed how tight and dry my skin feels after a day in the office if I forget to pop this on. I’ve also found it invaluable as something light and fast absorbing to put on after a bath or a shower. I have a bit of an issue with the feeling of products sitting on my skin so tend to avoid moisturising, much to my own detriment. This makes a great light moisturiser that has turned out to be invaluable after leg shaving- it has the added bonus of not stinging half as much as other products either (because I am that person who is incapable of hair removal without drawing blood!)
So for now at least I have my skincare sorted thanks to Cetaphil and Superdrug. The products are reassuringly affordable as well- £10.09 for the cream, and £8.99 for the lotion and the cleanser. Superdrug currently have them on offer at £2 off as well which makes now the perfect time to try them out for yourself.

Let me know about some of your skincare saviours in the comments, or if you’ve tried any of these products let me know what you think.

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Products sent to me by Superdrug for consideration for this post. Post also contains affiliate links.

The Purrfect Jacket from Miss Patina

Oh hello, long time no post- there’s a serious lack of blogging mojo around these parts at the moment, coupled with generally being busy and struck down with some crazy flu type virus- great start to 2018!

Anyway, I’m showing my face around here today as I wanted to show off one of my Christmas presents before the festive season is still vaguely in people’s minds. I’m not usually one to do a show and tell of gifts I’ve received but I do make exception for something particularly awesome, and I am pretty sure this jacket qualifies.

Jacket: Miss Patina | Dress: New Look

The second I spotted this jacket I knew I needed it. I just love the Miss Patina store, my wish list from there goes on for eternity but it’s a bit out of my price range, so when it was suggested I had this as a Christmas present from my Grandad I jumped at the chance.

I don’t really “do” jackets like this usually, I live in cardigans and coats 90% of the time, but I figured that was even more excuse to own this- a much smarter alternative to baggy knitwear now I actually venture out to the odd social occasion.

Please excuse my slightly dishevelled appearance, aforementioned busy life and current state of malaise mean keeping well presented has fallen by the wayside. Probably should make a late new years resolution to make more effort!

I hope everyone is well and keeping chipper during this gloomy first month of the year- have you been up to anything exciting? Let me know in the comments.

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The Perfect Smart/Casual Jacket

I hate being cold, I’m miserable when I am cold and therefore it makes sense that I own rather a large selection of coats and jackets- mostly coats though, and mostly casual and despite telling myself that I really can’t justify adding to my collection when the opportunity came up to work with Irish fashion retailer Cari’s Closet and I clocked the jacket I’m featuring in this post I just shrugged my shoulders and declared “there’s always room for one more”.

Jacket c/o Cari’s Closet (now on sale!) | Pinafore: Monki | Star Print Top: Primark | Boots c/o LOTD

Of course there’s justification for one more jacket especially when it’s ideal for bridging that gap between smart and casual wear. Perfect for slinging on over jeans and a jumper for day time, but still smart enough to put over an evening outfit to keep the chill off- something that always foils any partywear plans of mine…a big old duffel coat just doesn’t do the job so well.

This is a beautiful jacket, and a bargain right now as well as it’s gone in to the Cari’s Closet sale. This is a website I wasn’t familiar with up until a few weeks ago but after an extensive browse I’m quite the fan and next time I’m in need of a fancy party dress it’s one of the first places I’ll be visiting. There was a definite touch of luxe when my parcel arrived, immaculate in it’s sleek black box. I do love a company that takes care over the little details.

I hope everyone had a fantastic NYE and isn’t too sad to be getting back in to the swing of life after those long and lazy inbetween days (I say long and lazy, but I am sure that many people were, like myself, back at work). I for one am looking forward to getting some proper routine back, I don’t do well in chaos, and although January is traditionally a bit of a rubbish month, for me at least I feel it will be different this year. I’m so excited for 20o18 and all it has to offer and I’m looking forward to sharing more of it as it happens.

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Winter Wonderland with Essence Cosmetics

It’s the season to sparkle! And whilst this post might be a bit late in the day for Christmas party inspiration, there’s still NYE to come, and what better excuse to up your makeup game?

As ever, Essence have come up trumps with on trend and affordable products to really add some sparkle to your festive look.

First off, apologies for the dire lighting and the lack of swatches in these photos. I wanted to do this post before Christmas but time constraints with work, and the winter lighting meant trying to grab these at 8am, just before leaving the house!

Anyway, excuses over and on to the products…

Contour fans and highlighter addicts will LOVE the prismatic hololighter stick which gives the most amazing sheen thanks to it’s holographic pigments. This is a multi-use product and an absolute bargain at £3.50- if you only bought one thing from Essence then I think it should be this.
Another amazing shimmer product is the moonlight eyes eyeshadow in the shade Angel. I own a couple of these now and I love the subtle, build-able iridescent colour- they make a great base shade for any look.

I’ve always heaped praise on Essence eyeliners and review the metal art lip & eye liner in a previous post. For party season I’m loving the shade “steel the show”, especially paired with vibrant shock lash & brow gel mascara in “sparkle on”.

The Metal Shock eyeshadow is another product I previously reviewed (and rated) and the “moon dust” shade is a welcome addition to my growing collection. I’ve used these for every party I’ve been to this month- as a base to which I’ve pressed some loose glitter or pigment on to for maximum impact.

I’ve not had a chance to try the nail products included in the package as I’m still sporting a shellac manicure. I plan to give my nails a break in the new year so will try these products out and share the results on instagram, but if you’re impatient to see for yourself and want a fun party look then you can read more here, here and here.

If you’re looking for some last minute party makeup, or fancy some on trend and affordable updates for the new season then definitely head to your local Wilko store or to their website where you’ll find all of these products and more for under a fiver per piece.