Winter Beauty Essentials

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

And just like that, leaves are falling, my snuggly jumpers are back out, Starbucks festive drinks have returned and it's absolutely bloody freezing outside... That's right, Winter is well and truly on the way. And with that, so is my Winter beauty routine.

I love switching up my beauty regimes for the seasons, and there's just something about Winter that makes me want to pamper myself more than usual. Plus, the cold plays absolute havoc with my skin, hair, nails, you name it... So it's the perfect opportunity to switch to a routine which gives a little more TLC.

So, without further ado, here are my essential Winter products which will be seeing me through the colder months,

Dermalogica Skin Smoothing Cream
I was gifted this product recently as part of Dermalogica's Skinfluencer programme, and it couldn't have come at a better time. My skin's already prone to dryness, but it absolutely hates the change in weather which just makes it even worse. But this has become my holy grail moisturiser already, as it's that little bit thicker but still absorbs quickly and makes my skin so so soft and banishes the dry patches all through the day.

Noughty Intensive Care Leave-In Conditioner
This one is also a fairly recent discovery, I've heard so many good things about Noughty products so decided to give them a try for myself. I always find that my hair needs an extra bit of love when it's cold because (as well as all the heat damage) it gets absolutely battered by the cold and wind and rain so this is absolutely perfect as it leaves my hair looking visibly healthier and super smooth!


Urban Decay Naked Eyeshadow Palette
I couldn't write this post without mentioning my current favourite palette. I picked this up a couple of months ago when I heard it was being discontinued (sob) as I just knew that if I didn't get it I'd regret it forever. I'm currently obsessed as the shades mean you can create a million different looks and the shimmery golds and browns are just perfect for this time of year!

Maybelline ColourSensational Matte Lipstick in Burgundy Blush
Autumn/Winter is allllll about the dark lipsticks for me. I love experimenting with plum and berry shades, and this beaut shade from Maybelline is fast becoming a favourite. It has some serious staying power and lasts all day, and is perfect for this time of year!


Garnier Moisture Bomb Tissue Mask
I genuinely don't know what I would do without these masks these days. I've become obsessed with tissue masks just because they're so easy and waaaay less messy than a normal face mask! And these ones from Garnier are my all-time favourite, because they leave my skin absolutely glowing, and are absolutely perfect for my poor dehydrated face. I use them twice a week, and Superdrug have them online for £1.99 right now, so I've stocked up!

What are your must-have beauty items for Winter?

Love,
Sian xo

7 Ways I'm Really Not A Successful Adult

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Being in my mid-twenties and living away from home, you'd think I had a pretty good grip on this whole adulting thing right now, wouldn't you?

You'd be sorely mistaken on that one, I'm afraid!

At this point in life, I feel like I'm pretty much winging it. It's the butt of a lot of my friends jokes how I've managed to get to 24 without either setting myself of fire, forgetting to eat for a week and remembering that clothes do in fact need washing on a regular basis.

Surely I can't be the only one though, right?

In celebration of those who are winging it through adulthood, here are 7 ways that I'm really really really not a successful grown-up.

1. My cooking repertoire consists of about three or four dishes. Most of those dishes are those which only need one-pan, because I'll be damned if I'm washing more than one pan up. Also, never ever ask me to try a new recipe, because that will almost certainly result in mild panic, undue stress and downing a bottle of wine before dinner is even served.

2. I can't remember the last time I ironed a piece of clothing. In fact, I don't even know if I own an ironing board any more??

3. After looking after my three year-old niece for one afternoon, I'm always EXHAUSTED, and realise that I won't be ready to be a parent for several years yet! (she just never. stops. running.)

4. I have no idea what any of the lights on the dashboard of my car mean. Just take it a garage and hope it doesn't die on the way??

5. I still don't like red wine. My family always tell me I'll grow into it. I definitely haven't yet.

6. Organising utility bills are just beyond me. How on Earth is that phone conversation supposed to go? 'Uhm hello yes, I would like to purchase some of your water, please?' And since when was water not free anyway?!

7. I know I really should care about politics... But they all sound exactly the same! Blah blah blah... let's put Netflix on instead.

Love,
Sian xo

My Current Skincare Routine*

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

I feel like a terrible beauty blogger for saying it, but I've always found it so difficult to get into a proper skincare routine. It's probably because I'm a lazy so-and-so, but the idea of going through a several-step process before finally being able to get into bed at night, or as soon as my alarm goes off in the morning just hasn't appealed to me and I've always just done the bare minimum.

That is, until recently. Since having the opportunity to use some amazing products, I've found that I've almost fallen into a routine by accident, and I actually enjoy going through my skincare routine, especially in an evening when I can get into bed all squeaky-clean and feeling fresh.

So I thought I'd share my current skincare routine with you all, containing products that I absolutely love and have finally turned my lazy habits around!

Dermalogica Precleanse
I was gifted this product as part of the Dermalogica #skinfluencer programme, but it's very quickly become a skincare staple for me. Double-cleansing has made such a difference to my skin, and although this precleanse is like an oil, it feels really lightweight and just melts away make up and other grime that your skin has picked up through the day.

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish
I can honestly say, hand on heart, that I will never use another cleanser again. Cleanse & Polish is my absolute holy grail, not only does it smell divine, it leaves my skin feeling so so soft and nourished.

Dermalogica Daily Microexfoliant
Another one from Dermalogica, I've always been cautious of exfoliators as I hear about some products being too harsh on the skin. This one is made of rice powder, and is perfect for everyday use as the particles are really fine. I only tend to use this in the evening, but it feels so lovely after having make up on all day. I always find my skin looks a little brighter after using it which I love

Freshly Cosmetics Purifying Facial Toner
Freshly are fast becoming one of my favourite brands, and the Facial Toner is just incredible. The lime scent is amazing, it and it feels so refreshing on the face, especially first thing in the morning. I never really saw the point of toning until using this, but I can see after I use it that my skin looks just that little bit more glowing.

Skinkissed Serum
You may have seen my previous blog post talking about this product which I was gifted a few months ago. I love using it in the evening as a little bit of a luxurious treat, as it feels so lovely and nourishing on the skin. It makes my face look so much brighter which I love about it and it's really helped clear up my pesky spots.

Soap & Glory For Daily Youth Moisturiser
My favourite moisturiser EVER! I've been using this product from Soap & Glory on and off for a good couple of years now and I don't think I've ever not replenish it. It smells amazing and feels so lightweight on the skin, but gives amazing results, especially for my super dry skin.

What are your skincare must-haves?

Love,
Sian xo

What About When YOU'RE the Rubbish Friend?

Sunday, 28 October 2018

I've always prided myself on knowing how to be a 'good friend'. I'm usually the one in the friendship group who people know they can rely on to be there, whether that's for advice, a chat or for someone to bring the wine. When a friend's been through a break up or a tough time, I'm normally the first one there offering ice-cream, a hug and a 'he-wasn't-good-enough-for-you-anyway' pep talk.

As you get older and move away from various friends, obviously keeping your friendship going is always going to be a bit more difficult. Even then, I've always put in as much effort as I possibly could at keeping in touch with people and being there for them as much as possible, even when I'm a good few miles away from them. Having friends around me has always been so important to me, especially after a lonely few years at school where I felt like I had none.

I've noticed though, during the last six months or so, that contact has started to fall away a bit. It's not been a gradual realisation though, it's been more of a smack-you-in-the-face realisation that actually, I hadn't spoken to a lot of my friends in weeks, even months. Why?

Well, my family circumstances have meant that I've had an incredibly tough year. My focus has shifted slightly because, well, it's had to. But as I started to think of the friends from uni, or from previous jobs, or other aspects of my life who I haven't spoken to or seen in a really long time, I decided to have a glance through my phone and see where it's gone wrong.

When I started to see the missed calls, unanswered texts and WhatsApp messages left on Read, my heart sank.

It's been my fault. 

There has been the occasional person who I've told about my family situation, and they've all of a sudden stopped communicating with me since. Probably because they don't know what to say, and I do understand that. But I've found on the whole, I've ignored text messages asking how I am, forgotten to call back for weeks and weeks on end and bailed on plans at the last minute. I haven't seen my best friends from uni in almost a year.

I think it's important to recognise when you're in the wrong. And it's important to try to fix it. In this case, yes I have been through the toughest time of my life in the last six months, however that's no excuse for forgetting to make friendships a priority.

So, I'm going to fix it.

To my uni girls. To my old work squad. To friends I've had since I was five. For all of the times I forgot to call for a catch up when I said I would, I'm so sorry. For all the times I didn't respond to your text messages, please know I wasn't being ignorant, I've just had a million and one other things on my mind. For the cancelled plans, it wasn't that I didn't want to see you. I've just found it really hard to put on a brave face when I've been so so low.

My friends are going back at the top of my priority list, where they belong. No more being the rubbish friend.

Love,
Sian xo


Periods Made Easier with Pink Parcel*

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Is it just me who thinks once a month for a period is just far too often? 

I'm one of those unfortunate ones who really suffers with her periods - I'm often up the entire night with cramps, throwing up, lethargic and just feeling icky. 

Luckily, Pink Parcel are here to help our 'time of the month' a little bit easier. When the lovely PR team offered to send me one to try myself, I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Anything to help me get through my period, right?


When you open up the box, it's absolutely crammed full of goodies to help you through your period. First and foremost, there are enough sanitary pads and tampons to last you your entire period, including pads which are suitable for night-time, which is perfect for a spare stockpile for those 'just in case' moments. You also get a cute little draw-string bag to keep your sanitary products in, which has been fab for me to pop into my handbag for an extra bit of discretion when I'm out and about.


My favourite aspect of the Pink Parcel was the 'For You' section - which was all packaged in a box labelled with 'things to cheer you up.' At a time when I'm generally feeling hormonal, emotional, and at times, a little bit psycho, pretty things to make me feel a little more myself couldn't be more welcome!

The products which are included change each month, but my box contained some peppermint chocolate (yes please!), fabric bracelets celebrating 100 years of women's suffrage, a face mask and a matte red liquid lipstick - because there's nothing like a fab lipstick to make me feel sassy again! It was like the ultimate self-care package, and I definitely made use of all of the products when I needed them!

I loved receiving my Pink Parcel, I honestly think it's one of my favourite subscription boxes. I love that it's a little bit unique to other boxes I've tried and is so thoughtfully put together to cheer you up during your period. I'm definitely going to be repurchasing a Pink Parcel box - for £12.99 the amount you get is so worth it!

Have you ever tried Pink Parcel?

Love,
Sian xo

*This item was gifted to me in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own.

I've Been SkinKissed!*

Sunday, 23 September 2018

You know when you find a product that fits perfectly into your routine instantly? I love it when that happens.

I've been using serums as part of my skincare routine for a long time now. I love the extra boost they give, especially at night when my skin's feeling a little tired.

I was very kindly sent the SkinKissed Vitamin C serum recently, and I've been putting it to the test over the last few months. I can honestly say it's now a firm feature in my skincare routine!

The serum is packed full of Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid & collagen - the perfect combination of ingredients for healthy, glowing skin. The formula is quite thick, which I personally love in a serum but it doesn't take long for the skin to absorb it, which means it is suitable to use either morning or evening. You only need a drop or two for the whole face and neck, a little bit goes a long way with this one!

But the glow. I love a product which gives instant results, and I could see a difference in my skin right from the first use. The Vitamin C gives my skin so much nourishment and an amazing boost, especially when I'm stressed and run-down, it always shows in my skin first! I get such a glow from using the serum, which is perfect for underneath make up, especially when I'm not fancying using too much foundation.

I can definitely recommend the SkinKissed serum for anyone who has tired, dehydrated skin and wants a healthy glow.

What's your favourite skincare serum?

Love,
Sian xo

*This product has been gifted to me in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own. 

48 Hours in London

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

The look on my sister's face on her 18th birthday when she unwrapped her 'tickets' (handmade as I hadn't had them arrive yet) was absolutely priceless, I genuinely wish I'd recorded it. The tickets were for Wicked, the West-End show that she'd wanted to see ever since being a child.

I'd planned a weekend trip to London for us, staying in Clapham and we wanted to pack as much into our trip as possible. And I thought I'd share it with you!

We arrived at our little hotel in Clapham on Friday evening, which seemed a bit far out at the time but it was a two-minute walk from the tube station, so pretty convenient really! We ditched our plans to go for a meal and drinks in favour of stocking up on snacks from the Sainsbury's Local and watching 8 Out Of 10 Cats in the room. And we had such a giggle. I was exhausted from working all week anyway, and we wanted to be fully charged for a full-on day on the Saturday.

Our first full day was a packed one. We decided to spend the day shopping, it had been so long since we'd had a good shopping trip! Oxford Street (including the Harry Potter section in Primark, of course), Regent's Street (if only for Hamley's), Caranby Street, coffee, pasta and a lot of overspending... totally worth it. We wandered the busy streets, died over the Disney Spectrum collections and somehow managed not to buy the entire Sweet Peach range in Too Faced.


Back to the hotel for a quick change and out for dinner and Wicked. We were so excited. 

After spending a small chunk of time crying at the price of prosecco in the theatre (I should have known better, it was too much for my poor Northern soul), the music started and we settled in for the show. It was my third time seeing Wicked but I still love it each and every time. I kept stealing glances at Isabelle and seeing her fall in love too, which was so lovely to see. (We might have both cried a bit. Just a bit though.)


We decided to take Sunday at a slightly slower pace, and use it to see all the usual tourist sights. We headed to Covent Garden first for the most amazing brunch (an omelette with chorizo and potato?! Yes please!) before taking a little wander around Whittard's, which is one of my favourite shops!

There's sometimes a massive assumption that when you take a trip to London everything is rushed because you have to pack everything in. But I'll be honest, we weren't really feeling that. 48 hours isn't a very long time for such a massive city, so we decided to walk towards the river, and see what we stumbled across along the way. No rush, no stress. We took it steady, explored little side streets that looked interesting, passed Leicester Square and Trafalgar Square and eventually found the River. We wandered the Embankment, stumbled across a huge second hand book sale, found cute prints for sale, had an ice cream and just took the city in. We had the best day, saw plenty, chatted and had a giggle. And did a lot of people watching!


We're already planning another trip to London, hopefully next year because we just loved spending quality time together! The next show has already been decided - we both want to see Hamilton so badly that we just need to bite the bullet and sell a kidney each to afford the tickets! It'll be worth it though.

Have you been to London? What are your favourite spots?

Love,
Sian xo