March Round-Up

March 26, 2017

I can't believe were nearly done with March already.. It's true what they say, when you grow up time really does pass you by. My month has been quiet but here are a few of the things that have put a smile on my face.

I’m not really one for for making new years resolutions and sticking to them, in fact in my 26 years so far I’ve completed.. 1. This year I decided to make one and really try to stick to it, so as of 1st January 2017 I quit smoking. I’ve tried to quit before, I think the longest I ever made it was into my 3rd week.. I’m now into my 3rd month (84 days & counting!) and I am so proud of myself. I think the 1 thing thats different this time is that I’m not doing it to please anyone else, I want to quit. I want to be healthier and happier in my life.. so far so good!

So now that were into March the mornings are lighter and the days are brighter (well, sometimes), and I don’t know about you but my mood is just that much better when there is sunshine! I finally feel like spring is just around the corner. I even went to the park today and for the first time in months the scarf was off and the sunglasses were on.. it's the little things isn't it?

I’m going to see Steps! My sister & I booked tickets for their tour later this year and I am so excited. They were the 1 group that we both loved when we were little, it’s possibly going to be one of the cheesiest things I’ve ever seen and I can’t wait! Just an FYI about how much I loved them.. I seriously went though a phase where I watched Steps Live at Wembley every single night for about 6 months straight.

I went to see Beauty and the Beast last night and it is uh-mazing! They stayed true to the original classic, but I feel they did put a slightly updated spin on it. It is an absolutely magical film (that dance scene.. major heart eyes!) and I’m definitely considering going to see it again. Oh can we just talk about LeFou for a moment? By far my favourite character, so sassy! 

Happy Mothers Day! I want to wish my Mum an extra special Mothers Day, I'm sure we drive her up the wall most of the time but she is the most amazing person who deserves to have the best day. Thank you for everything you do for me Mum, your the best!

I hope everyone has had a good month so far.. I must admit I'm looking forward to April - it's my birthday AND it's easter, need I say more? 

Steph x


Ouai - First Impressions

March 19, 2017

So out of everything that falls under the beauty related category hair/hairstyling really isn't my thing. I mean, I can kind of put a presentable wave in my hair but if you mention a braid or any kind of up-do, forget it. When it comes to products I’m a “use whatever’s there” kinda girl but lately I’ve wanted to make more of an effort with my hair. Ouai (pronounced “way”) is a brand thats had a lot of hype this past year, its the brain child of celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin, who is responsible for the hair of the Kardashians, so I had high hopes!

Ouai Clean Shampoo - £22.00
I’ve had this on my wishlist for a while now. I have a lot of hair and its quite fine, so due to this my hair can go greasy really quickly. I wanted a clarifying shampoo that wasn’t going to strip any colour from my hair, but deeply cleanse my hair at the same time. The Ouai Clean Shampoo is a sulphate free clarifying shampoo that eliminates build up and detoxes the hair. It’s quite thick in texture and you do need to work it into your hair to lather it up, but I do find this does a really good job at removing all build up from my hair. One thing to know about me.. I hate washing and drying my hair, like I could literally think of a thousand and one things I would rather be doing, by using this I’d say I get an extra day out of my hair which makes it a winner to me. Oh as it is a clarifying shampoo I do make sure to use a deep conditioning treatment afterwards as I do find the ends of my hair can go bit dry. 

Last Year I finally bit the bullet and got a lot of my hair chopped off (about 5 inches I believe) and while I love my shorter hair, it does take bit more effort in the styling department.. No more just brushing my hair and being done with it. As I mentioned I’m not one to use a ton of products on my hair, but I knew I needed a decent texturising spray if I wanted to keep things as simple as possible. I’ve always had my eye on the Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray, but every time I added it to my basket I’d cry a little when I looked at the price (£41 for a hair product!) and then I would swiftly remove it back to my wishlist. So when I seen all the hype for the Ouai Texturising spray for nearly half the price I knew it was something that I needed to try. It’s a mixture between a texturing spray and a dry shampoo, it gives my hair enough grit to give it that second day “I just woke up like this” effortless hair, and enough hold to keep my waves in place while making sure it doesn't go stiff with too much product. The spray does have quite a distinct scent which i personally like, but I have seen quite a few people who were a little off put by it, so if your sensitive to smell it is something to keep in mind. 

I’m quite impressed with both of the products that I’ve used, next on my list is the finishing cream and hair oil.. has you tried any of the Ouai products? Do you think their worth the hype?
Steph x


9 Binge Worthy TV Shows

March 12, 2017

One of my favourite things to talk about, other than beauty, is tv and film. I’m one of those people who become way too emotionally invested in a good story. These are 9 shows that I've spent too many late nights telling myself "just one more episode.."

The Office (US Version) - I think out of everything on this list, this has to be my favourite! It is a mockumentary based in the Dunder Mifflin paper company, and follows the 9 to 5 of an office job. Each episode is roughly 20 minutes long and while it is easy to watch, you somehow become really invested in the characters. It’s full of sarcasm and dry humour but that doesn’t take anything away from the storylines. I’ll admit I’ve shed a few tears over Jim & Pam (ultimate relationship goals) and I’ve got to say.. Dwight Schrute is one of the best characters ever.

Gilmore Girls – This is one that I’ve only recently started watching, it’s about a mother and daughter who live in a town called Stars Hollow (which seems like such a cute place to live), who have a best friends relationship and it follows their lives. While I do find that some of the storylines are quite unrealistic, it’s a nice, feel-good show to watch when you just want to chill out.

F.R.I.E.N.D.S – I don’t think this one needs much of an explanation, 6 friends living in NYC and it is hilarious. I feel like if you were a teenager in the 90’s or early 00’s then this show was the one to watch. I never ever get bored of watching Friends and I still find it as funny as the first time I watched it. This always has re-runs on tv and I think it has ever since it finished in 2004.. it's the ultimate classic.

Downton Abbey – I am obsessed with period dramas, if anything is set during or pre WW2 then I’ll watch it. Downton Abbey starts in 1912 where it follows the life of the wealthy Crawley family (the matriarch being the amazing Dame Maggie Smith) and their staff throughout the years until 1925. There is something so endearing about this show, there’s no sex, violence or vulgar, its just good wholesome drama. Oh, did I mention that P.Diddy is a big fan?

Broadchurch - So when this one first came out I remember everyone i know talking about it. A young boy is murdered and throughout the first series the police search to find the killer. First of all, I’ve never seen a series quite like this, i was absolutely hooked from the beginning. I think my mum and I speculated about every single person to ever appear on screen, it is so unpredictable and they throw so many red herrings in, i’d go as far to say that no one guessed the killer until that last episode. Secondly, can we just take a minute for David Tennant and Olivia Coleman in this? Their on screen partnership is pure brilliance.

Peaky Blinders - Another period drama, set during the 1920’s. It centres around Tommy Shelby and his gang, The Peaky Blinders, and how they try to move up in the world and make a better life for themselves, albeit not always in a legit way. I love the whole design of this show, the storylines and the cast are amazing, the costumes and cinematography are beautiful, the soundtrack is something else.. this show has everything.

Making A Murderer - This is a Netflix original documentary series about a man called Steven Avery, his nephew Brendan Dassey and a woman called Teresa Halbach. It follows the case of a murder and tries to answer the question of did they do it?  Wether you think they did or they didn’t, it’s gripping to watch. I think i watched this in 2 days and stayed up till 4am to finish it.

The OA - This is another Netflix original, its the story of a young woman who turned up after being missing for 7 years. It falls into the science fiction/supernatural genre and i do think you have to get past the first episode, but after that I watched episode after episode. I would say this won’t be for everyone, it is definitely a marmalade show, and if you do watch it until the end you will be googling theories about the ending.

American Horror Story - If you don’t like horror then you might want to leave this one out. Each series has a different storyline with a different set of characters (although the core cast remains the same), and all the storylines are somehow connected with each other. It’s filled with all the usual gore that you’d expect from a horror series but it doesn’t overpower the storytelling. Definitely worth a watch. P.s - Jessica Lange is a Queen!

Have you watched any of these shows? What shows have you been binge watching recently?

Steph x


Current Collection - Cleansers

March 05, 2017

So after a long day of wearing make up do you ever get that feeling where you feel so suffocated that you just want to rip your face off? Maybe just me then.. anyways, these are the cleansers I’m currently using to help ease that feeling at the end of the day.

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish £15.50 - So this is a firm cult favourite and theres a reason why, it’s one of the the most gentle and fail-safe cleansers out there. The cream texture removes all traces of dirt and grime from the day and due to the chamomile ingredient it soothes the skin as well. I find this cleanser to be a nice one to use in the mornings as the smell (eucalyptus) instantly makes me feel more awake (side-note.. i’m really not a morning person). Liz Earle also bring out limited edition scents throughout the year, my favourite being the Pink Pepper & Mint.. such a gorgeous scent! Another thing to note, at £15.50 this is one of the most affordable cleansers and its now a staple in my routine.

Clarins Gentle Foaming Cleanser £20.00 - Clarins isn’t usually a brand i would look to when buying a cleanser, however as I received this as part of a gift set for Christmas I thought I would try it out. It is a thick cream cleanser that lathers gently when water is added, but I do find that it can go a bit stiff and mask like if there is not enough water added. Clarins describe it as a cleanser that has targeted ingredients to respect and preserve the skin’s natural moisture balance, but for me I found it was a bit stripping on my skin as I'm more on the dry/combination side, however I imagine it would be more suitable for someone oily/combination skin.

Pixi & Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse £24.00 - So this is a new one for me.. I ordered this last week (£10.00 off thanks to ASOS A-List!) after reading tons of reviews for this cleanser.  So, first things first.. if there is 1 person who I would trust when it comes to skincare it’s Caroline Hirons, she is literally a skincare guru. Caroline has collaborated with Pixi to bring out the double cleanse cleanser. Double cleansing is something that I have always done to an extent, I use a micellar water to remove the bulk of my makeup and then use a cleanser afterwards. The double cleanse cleanser has 2 parts, a balm that turns into an oil & a cream cleanser. I find the balm does a good job at removing the bulk of my makeup and then following on with the cream cleansers my skin is left feeling clean and soft. This product is also none scented which is great for sensitive skin. I have to say so far I’m really impressed with this cleanser, it’s definitely one i’ll be repurchasing.

*So a few things to mention with regards to my skin.. I have combination skin with an oily t-zone and some dry areas on my cheeks and chin. My skin is quite problematic at the moment with breakouts and it can be bit sensitive.

Have you tried any of these cleansers? What are your thoughts?

Steph x

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