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

Brushes and More From Crownbrush*

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

I'm one of those people who is really bad at hoarding make up brushes. I have absolutely tonnes of them, and most of them are very much worse for wear. I've known for a long time that I need to look into replacing them, but I never actually got around to it.

Cue Crownbrush. I was approached by their PR team about collaborating and testing a few of their products. A new brand to me, AND replacing my gross old brushes? Yes please!

I was asked to choose a few products that I fancied trying out, and when I looked at the website, I was totally spoiled for choice. Little did I know that they don't only do brushes, there were palettes, foundations, the whole thing. All promising professional standard and amazing results.

I had to go for a couple of their signature brushes, of course. I selected a couple of staples, the Deluxe Large Foundation brush and the C456 Pointed Blender.


Is there anything more exciting than brand new, immaculate make-up brushes?! Both brushes were beautifully soft, sleek, and easy to use. I love the flat foundation brush for applying and blending liquid foundation, it works so well with my make up to give a flawless finish. I've been using the Pointed Blender brush for concealer, and it's so perfect for getting a precise coverage on blemishes and under-eye bags, and it works really well for blending concealer out too. I normally use a flat brush for concealer but I won't be looking back now as I find the Pointed Blender is just so much more effective!


As well as the brushes, I received the Studio Glam Eyeliner in Solid Gold. I've been wanting to pick up a gold eyeliner for absolutely ages, so I grabbed the chance! I've been using this liner to compliment my usual black winged look, either underneath my eyes or on top of the black, and I absolutely love using something a bit different! The liner is liquid, but it's so pigmented, with a beautiful finish and it lasts all day! The applicator is the perfect size to do thin lines but it's also super buildable for when you fancy something a little more extra.


Finally, I received the 35 Colour Rose Gold Eyeshadow Palette. Now I'm an absolute sucker for eyeshadow palettes anyway, but I think I unwrapped this one and instantly fell in love. It was absolutely made for me. From subtle nudes to shimmery golds to flattering browns, this palette is 35 shades of pure beauty! The colours are pretty pigmented, blend together like an absolute dream and the sheer amount means the combination possibilities are absolutely endless. I've absolutely loved playing around with this palette over the last couple of months and experimenting with different looks!

Overall, I couldn't be more impressed with Crownbrush. The brushes are absolutely stunning, and the other products are an absolute dream. And all for such reasonable prices. I'll definitely be back to purchase some more goodies soon!

Have you ever used Crownbrush?

Love,
Sian xo


*These products were gifted to me in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own.

Life Lately

Sunday, 26 August 2018

It feels like forever since I last sat down to write. To the point where now that I'm doing it, I don't really know where to begin. I suppose just having a chat about what has been going on recently is a good place to start.

You might have noticed it's been really quiet on my blog and across all of my social media platforms. I had absolutely no intention of taking a break, and even then I only wanted to step away from the blog for a week or two at the most. Instead it's been about six weeks and I feel like I'm completely out of touch with the community and just blogging as a whole.

So, what's been going on? Well, I'm not really ready to go into too much detail just yet but let's just say that back in April, our family received some news. The earth-shattering, devastating kind of news. The kind that causes your world to shift.

I tried really hard for a long time to pretend that it didn't affect me. Or that it affected me just enough to not overwhelm. I went to work and I smiled and I chatted and I got on with my job, I came home and did my admin work and I blogged and I cried when I felt the need to but I also wiped my eyes after a few minutes, put on my big brave girl face and carried on.

The problem with that tactic though, is that it only works for so long.

And the thing is with blogging, even though I love it and it was the only thing that kept me sane for a long time, when even existing, when doing the mundane things like getting up and brushing your teeth and getting yourself out of the house for work on time is exhausting, it pretty much quashes any creativity you have.

And let's face it, we all know there's a lot more to what we do than just write posts. There's the taking photos, editing, scheduling tweets, brainstorming ideas, being active on social media. And I just didn't have the mental energy anymore.

I won't blog if it feels like a chore. Yes I have a schedule and a to-do list, but if I don't fancy it, or I need to take a day for me, I'll do exactly that. I guess that's the beauty of your blog being just a hobby.

I've missed everything about blogging so much over the last few weeks. I've missed writing, taking photos, chatting away to people online, being active on InstaStories. All of it.

So, what now? Things aren't perfect. Some days I still feel like we're in complete turmoil. But they're definitely on the up and I feel more like myself. And I am so ready to come back into blogging and working away on new content. Let's go!

Love,
Sian xo

June Happiness Journal

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Honestly, these months are going by so fast!

June's been a little stressful for me for several reasons, but a combination of little things have been getting me through.

1. Having Love Island back on my screen!
Yep, I'm one of those people who is currently glued to my screen at 9pm every night. I'm not even sorry! Love Island coming back on my screen has made me so happy (even though this season isn't a patch on the previous, if you ask me) and it's been a really good excuse to make sure I have all of my work done by 9pm so I can watch it!

2. A BBQ with the 'Family You Choose'
I've probably mentioned this kind of thing in a tonne of previous Happiness Journal posts, but time with my non-blood family is something I cherish so much. At the beginning of the month, we took advantage of the sunshine and had a little BBQ and it was so lovely to just all chill out together and eat until we napped.

3. Getting back into a blogging routine.
I've had so much going on for the last month or two that I felt like I'd fallen out of my blogging groove. I wasn't anywhere near as organised, I was missing posts left right and centre... and I was kicking myself for it, in all honesty. I had a serious case of bloggers guilt, and I really missed being active on social media and creating. In the last few weeks though, I've got myself together and I'm finally back into a routine which I'm comfortable with.

What's made you happy recently?

Love,
Sian xo

My Summer Beauty Must-Haves*

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Summer has finally arrived and I couldn't be happier about it. I love switching up my beauty routine ready for the warmer months, putting away my heavy foundations and thick eye make up in favour of lightweight formulas and anything with a glow.

I've teamed up with Clive Christian and their range of summer perfumes to share with you my summer beauty must-haves, all of which will be at the top of my stash for the foreseeable future!

I've recently learned the importance of a great self-tan, especially when I've been a staycation-er for the last few years and my chance of getting a proper tan is pretty limited! I raved about the St Tropez One-Minute Mousse when I was kindly gifted it earlier this year and I'm still just as obsessed. It's so easy to use; pop it on, wait a minute, hop in the shower and done. It fits in perfectly with your daily routine and gives a natural sun-kissed glow, with no streaks!

To finish off the sun-kissed look, I've been loving the Utan Bronze and Tone night creme. This is designed for your face and you simply pop it on overnight and it builds a gradual tan. The cream is really lightweight and the glow it gives is gorgeous!


For me, there's nothing worse than it being the height of summer, and having to wear a full-coverage foundation. You know when you feel like you can't touch your face without half of your foundation melting off? Yep, that. Whilst the sun has been out, I've absolutely sworn by the Olay & MaxFactor BB Cream, I've been using it for years and it gives me just enough coverage to cover any blemishes and even out skin tone without feeling too heavy on my face.


I haven't really been a big fan of Benefit's Hoola Bronzer until recently - I always thought that the colour was much too strong for me and it just didn't really suit. It wasn't until I mentioned it to one of the Benefit girls when I went to have my eyebrows done that she showed me a couple of little tricks to create a more natural look, including blurring out the edges with a normal powder. Since then, I've been loving it. It hasn't left my make-up bag, it's perfect for giving your face a sun-kissed look for the summer.


During the winter, I'm all about greys, deep purples and red nails. But as soon as the sun starts to come out, I love changing it up to brighter colours. Barry M and Ciate are two of my favourite nail polish brands because they're hard-wearing and chip resistant, and these are two of my perfect summer shades, pink and corals, yes please!


In the warmer weather, my already thick and flyaway hair can go a bit nuts. It's the humidity! A good hair oil is essential for me to tame my locks. I discovered the Hallelujah Hair Oil from Forest & Shore a few months ago and I have never looked back. It's been working a treat at repairing my damaged hair, with the added bonus of smoothing and taming it during the humid weather.

What are your summer essentials?

Love,
Sian xo

*This is a sponsored post, but all work is my own.

Five Base Products I Swear By

Wednesday, 20 June 2018




Every beauty fan knows that an amazing face of make-up starts with an amazing base. And I don't know about you, but nothing makes me feel more confident than when I've put my make up on and my skin looks flawless. (Whether or not it's flawless underneath is an entirely different matter!)

I have certain products that I swear by for a flawless finish, these never leave my make up bag, and I repurchase them time and again because I couldn't live without them!

1. EE Green Tea Primer
The key to a fabulous base is a good primer. I received this one in a Glossybox a few months back and I've been loving it ever since. It's infused with green tea (who knew it could do so many things?!) and it's as lightweight as a moisturiser but it leaves you with the perfect canvas for your make up, leaving it really smooth and refreshed.

2. The Ordinary Coverage Foundation
I talked all about this foundation in a previous post - but I'm still as obsessed. As someone with really dry skin, I was so worried that my skin would hate a full coverage foundation, but I couldn't have been more wrong. It gives a gorgeous finish, covering every little blemish and evening out skin tone without feeling like you've got too much on your face.

3. Benefit Boiing Highlighting Concealer
This has been one of my favourite concealers forever. Industrial-strength, covers dark circles like an absolute dream and is so glowy. It's the perfect concealer for if you want a dewy finish, but still need a decent amount of coverage. A little of it goes a really long way, which makes the £20 price tag a little more bearable too!

4. Rimmel London Stay Matte Pressed Powder
I've been using this powder without straying for literal years and I'll probably never really use anything else. It does exactly what it says on the tin really, it mattifies, sets, and rarely needs reapplying (which is ace because who has time for that?!)

5. Revolution Conceal & Define 
The concealer everyone has been talking about recently! I couldn't resist picking up and seeing if it was worth the hype. And it totally is. I tend to use this when I fancy something a little more matte, but it still gives amazing coverage without sticking to my dry patches.

What are your go-to base products?

Love,
Sian xo

Real Neat Blog Award

Sunday, 17 June 2018

I love being nominated for these blog awards - the posts are really fun to write, plus they give you all a little insight into the person behind the blog!

I was nominated for the Real Neat Blog Award by the lovely Holly, I've actually not heard of it before now but I was still thrilled to be nominated!

Here are the rules of the award:
1. Put the award label on your blog.
2. Answer the 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
3. Thank the people who nominated you and link to their blogs.
4. Nominate any number of bloggers you like, include links to their blogs.
5. Let them know you nominated them (by commenting on their blog or twitter etc)


Here are my questions!

1. What made you start blogging?
I started blogging while I was at uni - I was studying Journalism and I'd been toying with the idea of starting a blog for ages. I went to my friend Fii's house for our usual cup of green tea and catch up, and I knew she blogged and asked for her help because I just didn't know where to start. She helped me to get everything set up that I needed, choose my inital blog theme and even took some first photos for me. And I fell in love with it almost instantly!

2. What's the most difficult thing you've ever had to do/overcome?
This is a difficult one... I think it's something which I don't wish to talk about on my blog, at least for the time being. It was only recent and the pain is still pretty raw on that one. A close second though, was sitting in front of my dad after four years. It didn't have the outcome I'd hoped for, and it took a hell of a lot of guts for me to even get there, but I was so glad I did it.

3. What's your favourite blog post you've done and why?
My favourite post is called Heartbreak, which I wrote just after my last relationship ended. I found it so therapeutic to write, and when I read it back just before posting, I couldn't believe those words had come out of me. It sounded so raw and real but also one of the most well-written posts I've ever done. I'm really proud of that one.

4. When was the last time you laughed uncontrollably? What happened?
Friday afternoon. Everyone in my office had got a little bit of the Fri-YAY hysteria and all of a sudden one of the lads turns round and says 'can you guys floss?' I thought he meant flossing my teeth at first, then I remembered it's that dance that all the cool kids are doing these days. He stood up and attempted it, but it looked more like a thrusting dad dance. In the end, we all had to get up and have a go at it, but we were all rubbish, and all in absolute stitches with tears rolling down our faces at the end.

5. Do you have a guilty pleasure? What is it?
I have guilty pleasures that aren't all that guilty, to be honest! Made in Chelsea, Love Island, Michael Buble, Little Mix, the list goes on!

6. What is your favourite memory from 2018 so far?
Sitting in Sheffield's Peace Gardens in the sunshine last month. It was beautiful weather, I had an iced tea in hand, and I was home. 

7. Do your friends and family read your blog?
Some do, I think. My best friend is my biggest fan, my sister reads it when she remembers, whether anyone else does I'm not really sure!

I'd like to nominate anyone who would like to do it! 

Love,
Sian xo

Family You Choose

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

To the Family You Choose,

You lot know me. I've always hated Father's Day. I stay off social media to avoid the #daddyslittlegirl posts and old photos. I scrunch my nose up at the adverts on TV and the meal offers outside restaurants. And more often than not, I spend Father's Day with you, just to distract me.

It's not that people shouldn't post on Father's Day and show their dads appreciation. It's always been a jealousy thing. I guess I feel cheated out of it.

This year though, I'm turning that on its head. And in honour of Father's Day, I'm celebrating you, some of my favourite people in the whole world. The Family I Chose.

You're a special bunch, because you didn't have to love me. There's no genetic connection that means we're forever linked. Instead, you took me on, got to know me, flaws and all, and love me anyway. And I'll always be grateful for that.

To Sarah, probably the most selfless person I've ever met. My godmother, big sister and best friend. I can genuinely say I wouldn't be the person I am without you. From teaching me silly songs and group games as a little girl, to taking me out for ice-cream to help mend a broken heart, to coming and beating down my front door when I try to go into hiding. And everything else in between. I couldn't be more grateful.


To Joe, the father figure I always needed. The man who would take on anyone who dared to try to do me wrong, makes me laugh and gives the best hugs. The man who knows exactly when he needs to bring cake, just because I've had a rubbish day. The man who will wrap me up in a big, Joe-like hug, kiss my forehead and remind me that the boy wasn't good enough for me anyway. Eloise is a lucky girl to have a dad like you.

To Eloise and Madison, my extra little sisters. How you two make me giggle! Madi, it's been so amazing to watch you grow from this little tot with brown curls and big eyes to the funny, sassy and clever girl you are now. Eloise, you have so much growing still to do but I already know I'm going to be so proud of the person you're about to become.



To Helen, one of the funniest, strongest people I know. Thank you for making me laugh until I cry, feeding me wine and for all the times we've been the ones giggling at the back of church.

To Grandma, the lady who taught me to remember my manners as a little girl, who always looks happy to see me and was always up at 2am when I was still working away on my uni essays and checked in to make sure I was okay. You're a special lady and I'm so grateful to have you.


Family isn't always necessarily about blood connections. Family are the people who stick by you through every triumph, every rough patch, every heartbreak. They're the ones who cheer you on and pick you up when you hit rock bottom. And when they do all that, because they chose you, hold on to those people. Mine are ace.

Love,
Sian xo

I'm Okay With Being 'Basic'

Sunday, 3 June 2018

I get the word 'basic' thrown at me pretty much every other day. My brother says I'm the most basic person he's ever met. Dan rolls his eyes when I get excited over rose gold items. My friends laugh and tut and shake their heads and mutter 'such a basic girl.'

But hey, why do they say I'm basic like it's a bad thing?

We live in a world which is all about fitting in, but there's also a negative connotation with not being different enough, or not being a bit edgy? 

Up until recently, I've found myself trying to justify to people why I am this way, or downplay characteristics, interests or behaviour that will make them think I'm 'basic'. But you know what? I've decided to embrace it. Yep, I'm basic.

Autumn is my favourite season. I love watching the leaves on the trees change colour. There's a slight chill in the air but it isn't too cold. It's perfect scarf weather (and I love scarves.) And there are few things that are as joyful as crunching through leaves.

I do get a bit excited when Starbucks bring back the Pumpkin Spice Lattes. They taste delicious, okay?

I love rose gold things. Especially homeware. Copper is also very pretty.

I happen to love my dragonfly tattoo on my wrist. I'll never be the kind of person who has large tattoos and I'll never even consider a sleeve, but that doesn't make it okay for heavily tattooed people to roll their eyes at me.

I love a good musical. My all time favourite is Wicked, which I could sing to you backwards.

You'll almost always find me with a cup of coffee in hand. Not because I think I look cool with a takeaway cup, but because I'm just really tired and need the caffeine.

I own a lot of Pandora jewellery, and I'm a firm believer that I'll never own too much of it.

I am the kind of person who will take a photo of their food before they tuck in if it looks especially delicious. Always thinking of the 'gram.

But, all of these things combined which apparently make me basic, doesn't make me any less intelligent, or kind, or any less myself. And if that means I'm 'typical', then so be it. Let me take joy in these little things.

Yep, I'm a basic girl. On the plus side, that makes it very easy to buy me Christmas and birthday presents!

Love,
Sian xo

May Happiness Journal

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

In all honesty, I didn't really want to sit down and write this post. The thought of writing a Happiness Journal when you've had so much happen, stuff that makes you feel devastated and exhausted and just low... I was pretty reluctant to even attempt it.

It wasn't until I sat down and thought about it that actually, there's been some really good stuff going on this month, in between all of the rubbish. And I think those things have kept me sane this month.

1. Time with my extended family.

My mum comes from a pretty big family, and we're pretty spread out all over the place. Time together is rare (weddings and christenings tend to be the main events) so it was really lovely to go out for lunch last weekend and spend some much-needed quality time together. They're a pretty funny bunch, especially my uncles, who I could sit and listen to all day when they tell stories about how mischievous they were as boys. We ended up spending the entire afternoon in a pub just chatting and laughing, which is a pretty perfect way to spend a Saturday if you ask me.

2. Snaps of Little Star at Disneyland.

My little niece went to Disneyland with her parents at the start of the month for her third birthday. At this point, I was feeling like absolute rubbish, but seeing photos come through over Whatsapp of her meeting all of the characters, running around giggling and just generally being an absolute cutie cheered me up no end. 

3. Passing my driving test.

Finally! This was my third attempt at my driving test, and I couldn't quite believe I'd passed when he handed me the certificate! I even picked up a car on Friday and the freedom I've got already is just awesome (but let's ignore the bills that go along with it...)

4. A trip to Sheffield.

A couple of weeks ago, Dan and I went on a little adventure to Sheffield so that I could go to the Liz Earle event at John Lewis. You know me by now, any excuse to go 'home' and I am there! I had a really lovely morning at the event, we had a late breakfast at one of my favourite spots and generally had a wander and some (rare) time together. (I want to move back even more now, mind you!)

5. Securing my first sponsored blog collaboration.

Earning money through your blog seems to be something of a taboo subject in the community, even though we all know that it happens. Personally though, I am more than happy to share the fact that I secured my first sponsored post this month! If I'm being honest, I never thought I'd ever get to this point, where someone would actually be willing to pay me real money to write for them. Whenever opportunities like this just give me that little bit of confidence that maybe I'm doing okay at this blogging thing!

What's made you happy this month?

Love,
Sian xo

Capturing the Little Moments With Panasonic*

Wednesday, 23 May 2018
Don't you just love capturing little moments on camera? The unposed, sans-filter, real moments. They're my favourite kind of photos. They always take me straight back to a memory, and never ever fail to make me smile.

I've teamed up with Panasonic to celebrate the launch of their Mirrorless 12-60mm Lens Camera to bring you some of my favourite photos of the 'little moments', and share the stories of why I love them so much!


I still don't know what we were giggling at. I remember this photo being taken as if it was last week. My first year of university, Christmas night out. We'd spent forever that evening getting ready, wrapping tinsel around ourselves and making sure we were just the right side of festive. We'd asked another flatmate to take photos before we headed out, already a little tipsy on cheap vodka and cranberry juice. One of us must have done something to make the others giggle, whether that was flicking her hair in an over-the-top way or joking about how utterly tacky we must look. I laughed until my stomach hurt and I had tears rolling down my face. By far one of my favourite uni memories.


My Little Star. This was taken about a week before my little niece's first birthday. She was so teeny then. We'd been out for tea, and her eyes lit up as soon as she saw the swing set. And I still find it impossible to say no to that little face. As we were swinging, her little giggle was absolutely infectious! I can't help but smile every time I see this photo, just because it pretty much sums up how much I adore the little tot.



I'd love to know what kind of camera this was taken on. I found this whilst digging through some old photos at my mum's house. This is my Nana & Grandad. Mum told me this was taken at one of their New Year's Eve parties, which they threw every year. Nana was tipsy at this point in the evening, apparently. Do you know what though? I still couldn't help but tear up a little when I found this. Decades together and seven children later, and look how in love they are! A fleeting moment, perfectly captured.

Love,
Sian xo

*This is a sponsored post, but all work is my own.

May Glossybox

Sunday, 20 May 2018


The dreamiest Glossybox ever.

Oh I do love a special edition box. When May's landed on my doorstep, I almost squealed at the pastel deliciousness of it. I'll definitely be keeping hold of this one!

Inside the box though, was five equally dreamy products which were carefully put together to help us Glossies treat ourselves to a little pamper.


First up is the Kueshi double-effect make up remover. This came in travel-size, so has been perfect for me recently as I've been backwards and forwards so much! It basically works like a micellar water, feels really light on the skin and works a treat at taking all my make up off.

I've also received a luxury jelly foot soak from gelspa - and in all honesty I haven't tried it yet just because I've been so busy and haven't had time at all! It looks lovely though, and I'll definitely report back once I've given it a whirl!

Having already tried Maria Nila products from previous Glossyboxes, I was really excited to unwrap the True Soft Shampoo & Conditioner. I have to be so picky with haircare, but I love these little duo. It does exactly what it says on the tin (or bottle), and left my hair ridiculously soft and didn't weigh it down at all. It smelled really nice and light too. I'll definitely be repurchasing this one!


I think by far my favourite product this month is the super-cute TRIFLE Cosmetics Praline Palette. It contains six shimmery shades (and I LOVE shimmers), from khaki to deep purple to beautiful neutrals. They're all very workable, easy to blend and the colour is really easily buildable. I've been absolutely loving using it for day and night looks, and it's perfect to pop in your bag and take with you when you're out and about. Plus the design is adorable.



Love,
Sian xo

Getting My Glow On With Rimmel London & Influenster*

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

I don't know about you lot but I am thrilled that the sun has finally decided to make an appearance! It's finally time to get my pretty dresses out and dust the cobwebs off my summer wardrobe.

You might remember me mentioning previously how new I am to the self-tanning world. I've always been pretty self-conscious of the fact that I am ridiculously pale, so I've started dabbling with tanning ready for the summer months in the hope that I'll look slightly less ghost-like.

Influenster & Rimmel London recently gave me the chance to get a bit more practice in achieving the perfect summer glow, and very kindly sent me my first ever Voxbox! This particular box was packed with three different products from the Sun Shimmer range, designed to make self-tanning easy (perfect for a newbie like me!) Ready to take a look?


The first product was the Sun Shimmer Instant Mousse, which appealed to me straight away as I have only ever used mousse tanning products before, so I was excited to see how this one compared. What I love is that a little bit of mousse goes a long way, so I could see this bottle lasting me quite a while. Once applied, the tan develops within an hour, which is brilliant for on-the-go. The mousse applies really easily and dries quickly, so I can just pop it on, get dressed and done. No fuss, no transfer onto clothes, no streaks! Winner!

I've also been testing the Sun Shimmer lotion infused with Chia Oil. I'll be honest, I was a bit worried about using a lotion just because I wasn't used it, and I did naively think I could get away with applying it without using a mitt (I cannot stress this enough: always use a mitt!) so the first time I used it, it did come out pretty streaky. But with a little perseverance, it's actually become my favourite product out of the three! It smells beautiful (never thought I'd be saying that about a tan product), the lotion itself is really rich and creamy and it gives such an even, buildable tan. The below picture is proof of the results I got with the lotion - unedited!


Finally, for those occasions where you just need to tan for a night, the Instant Tan lotion is perfect. This little bottle gives the most beautiful subtle summer glow, streak-free and washes off easily with soap and water. Beautiful tan, no commitment! I've been using this inbetween the other products to top up my tan when needed, especially if the weather has decided I need to get my legs out!


The Sun Shimmer range comes in three shades from Light to Dark - I've been using the Light Matte shades as I'm fair-skinned and wanted a subtle bronzed look. But again it is really buildable if you were feeling a little more daring!

Thank you so much to Influenster and Rimmel - I've had so much fun testing out these tanning products, and for about £7.99 each, I will definitely be repurchasing!

Have you ever used Rimmel's Sun Shimmer range? What's your favourite tanning product?

Love,
Sian xo

*These items were kindly gifted to me in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own!

On Being a People Pleaser

Sunday, 13 May 2018

I've always been a people pleaser. As a rule, I tend to put everyone else's wants and needs first, even if that means putting my own on standby. And I've been completely fine with that. Yes, it's rubbish at times when I've had to make sacrifices but it's more important to me that everyone else is okay. Just a trait of a kind person, right?

As it turns out, this part of my personality has become a point of criticism.
'You're too nice'
'You try to please everyone, that's why people walk all over you'
'You just can't say no to people, it's kind of spineless really'.

A girl can't win!

I'd never even associated what I thought was being kind and selfless with being a pushover or spineless. I never thought you could be criticised for trying to make people happy.

Do you know what's funny though? People are happy to bring you down for being a people pleaser, until they are the ones who want pleasing.

Once people work out that you'll put the happiness of others first, whatever the cost, they'll start to expect that of you. Even when they are the people who have made negative comments about how you are a people pleaser in the first place.

Can you tell I've been struggling with this recently?

There comes a point where you have to take back some control. For me, it's a case of remembering that sometimes, it's okay for my own happiness to come first. It's okay to say no to people, especially when they are expecting you to go out of your way for them. It's okay to feel frustrated that you can't win.

What do you think?

Love,
Sian xo