Friday, 29 January 2016

A-Z of Valentine's Day #2

Happy Friday, everyone! I'm back today with the second instalment of my 'A-Z of Valentines Day' series. The first one seemed to be a hit so I'm excited for you guys to see this one. It is a little more on the expensive side, but I promise the rest of the series shouldn't be! I really hope you like this one, let me know in the comments below and don't forget to share it with your loved ones as a subtle hint, or just if you think it will be useful to someone you know!

Have a great weekend!

P x

Master Class Copper Finish Fondue Set:
GlamGlow Gift Sexy Dazzling Hydration Set:
Aspinal of London Red Heart Coin Purse:
Michael Kors Jet Set Saffiano Leather Tote:
Apple Ipod Touch:
Swarovski Duo Heart Small Pendant:

Monday, 25 January 2016

A-Z of Valentines Day #1

Happy Monday, everyone! Bit of a different blog post today but I have been brainstorming and planning this series for quite a while now and I'm really excited about it. As Valentine's Day is looming, I thought it would be helpful to some of you to have some inspiration in picking the perfect gift for your loved one. Over the next week or so, there will be an alphabetised gift guide on this blog with a variety of different gifts; both material and experience, and of course to suit all budgets. I've also tried to include some unisex options where I can. If you see something from this series you like the look of for yourself and would like to drop a hint to your significant other, I have listed below the links to each product/experience and also added this article to my Pinterest board for my blog, that you can share with them or pin it yourself here.

I really hope you enjoy this series, find some inspiration and it helps to ease the stress of buying the perfect present! Let me know what you think and also leave any other suggestions in the comments below. 

P x

Lush 'Lover Lamp' Bath Bomb:
Lush 'Sex Bomb' Bath Bomb:
Lush 'Tender is the Night' Massage Bar:
Lush 'Lots of Love' Valentines Gift Set:
Marks & Spencer Rose Gold Cufflinks:
All Things Brighton Beautiful Personalised Silver Plated Vintage Map Cufflinks:
Bejewelled Treasures: The Al Thani Collection at the V&A:
Star Wars Celebration at ExCeL London:
Cirque Du Soleil's 'Amaluna' at Royal Albert Hall:

Monday, 18 January 2016

TK Maxx Beauty Bargains

For anyone who knows me, I don't make my love for TK Maxx a secret. I am about 10 minutes drive away from quite a large store which makes weekly visits a regular occurrence. One of the great things about TK Maxx is that I never know what will be in there week in week out across all departments of the store. I have heard that they have new deliveries every day and I often find many higher end brands with huge discounts and even brands that aren't readily available in the UK. Naturally as a beauty blogger, I go straight to the make-up section to see what goodies are waiting. Now, I don't always find great beauty buys every time I visit so please don't think I had found all of these products in one go. If my memory serves me right, I purchased all of these products over 3-4 week period. With all of that said, let's have a look at the products and my initial impressions of them...

Christian Breton Eye Focus Gift Set

This gift set was housed over by the Christmas clearance tables a few days after the big day. I had previously seen other products by the brand in the skincare aisles and generally liked the look of them. The packaging is sleek and rather expensive looking. This particular gift set has some more visual marketing attached to it, namely the 'STOP! INJECTION' sticker. Now I'm not in any market yet to have work done to any part of my face or body so it doesn't have a direct appeal to me but then again, if an eye cream can prevent me from needing work done and I buy said eye cream, then I guess the marketing has been a success? I must also mention that I was drawn to this product because of its French origins. Thanks to skincare expert Caroline Hirons, I have begun to notice the power and knowledge that French skincare has so this immediately made me trust and want to try the product out. Whilst I was browsing the product and thinking all of this, I flipped it over to look at the price. Oh. My. God. I don't know what I was more shocked at, the RRP or TK Maxx's price for the product. There was a saving of £62! As you can imagine, it went straight into my basket. If you'd like to learn more about the brand, click here. Keep an eye out for an in-depth review on this blog in a few weeks by following on Bloglovin' here.

Olivia Palermo X Ciaté London Satin Kiss Lipstick in Truffle

When this collaboration range launched back in August 2015, I waited with anticipation to see what my favourite bloggers and YouTubers thought of the range. The overall impression I got was largely positive and when I saw a few pieces of the line appear in TK Maxx, I was very excited and quickly rooted through to find something for me. First of all, I must address the packaging of this product. I only have 2 nail varnishes from Ciaté which is what they are known for, so didn't have many expectations for the design of their make-up. Now I'm sure Olivia herself had a say in the packaging and it definitely worked. I absolutely love the packaging. It's sleek and expensive looking with the signature Ciaté bow and Olivia's initials on the lipstick bullet itself. On to the colour pay-off. This shade is called Truffle and I would describe it as a nude with terracotta and a hint of pink undertones. It isn't usually a colour I'd go for but I do want to explore nude lipstick shades and this was my favourite out of the bunch on display. After first application, I was a bit apprehensive if it suited me but I stuck with it and I can honestly say I've used it so many times and it does look different in different lights. For example, the other night I was out with my friend for cocktails, it looks quite nude and gave me a real 90's feel to my make-up. Other times, it can look quite terracotta. The finish is true to name, it looks quite matte from the swatch but it does have a satin slip to it that makes it feel comfortable on the lips. If you'd like to see the full range, click here. I would definitely recommend this lipstick if you like your nudes, so keep an eye out in your local TK Maxx.

Olivia Palermo X Ciaté Nail Varnish in Sunday's

I can't say a great deal about this product as I haven't tried it out yet and it was bought for me as a gift for Christmas. However, it does look like a lovely shade perfect for work if you're not allowed to wear bright colours and even if you just need something to make them look a bit more polished (no pun intended). I love the packaging of this though, its very luxe and has been sitting pride of place on my desk because I can't bear to take it out and put it with all my other varnishes. I may even paint my nails tonight with them and post a pic on Instagram (link here), or you can of course find pictures online. Let me know if you have tried this varnish or any others from the range and what you thought of them!

Too Faced Bronzed & Poreless Pore Perfecting Bronzer 

I've never and have always wanted to own something from Too Faced. They're a much loved brand in the blogging community and have many successful products. I hadn't heard of this product before I saw it but being from Too Faced and claiming 'pore perfection', I was instantly intrigued and sold. I've used this product quite a lot and I really like it. I would say its a bit too orange for contouring but perfecting for adding a healthy colour around the face and on the high points during the summer. It's completely matte as well which is great as I like to add glow with other products. This product usually retailed for £23, but is now on a discount of £20 on the Too Faced website here. I managed to snap this up for £7.99, another reason why it is worth checking out the beauty aisles of TK Maxx.

So there you have it, 4 beauty products from great brands all at amazing discounts. I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog post and have been inspired to start searching TK Maxx for some of your favourite brands or, if you already check out TK Maxx for make-up, have scheduled in a much needed visit! Let me know what beauty bargains you have found at TK Maxx in the comments below!

Thank you for reading and see you next week!

Paris x

Monday, 11 January 2016

Bedroom Re-Vamp Series #1 | Choosing The Right Style For You

I am so excited to start decorating my room, I cannot even tell you. Let me give you a brief history/run down of my new space. I've been in my new bedroom since June and as far as decorating goes, I've only bought a bedside table and put a fancy knob on it. I have all of my old furniture from my uni room like my bed and my desk but they simply do not suit the space anymore. The paint on my desk has started to come away around the edge and look a tad tatty and my bed has a metal frame both at the head and foot of the bed which does take up a lot of floorspace as well as airspace, if that makes sense?

The layout of my room is also quite different too. My old room was pretty much a perfect rectangle with a slight recess where the door was. This room is probably about two thirds of the size and has a set back recess for the window and sloping ceilings either side. I have sketched out a rough drawing of both rooms and put them in this post either side of each other so you can see how my spaces are different and how throughout this series, my decisions are influenced.

My old bedroom

My new bedroom

Now I've filled you in on what my space is like and a few minor details (not too much though as that will spoil the series!), it's time to get into the topic of this post which is choosing the right style for you. As I love home décor, its easy for me to get sucked into different trends and want my room decked out accordingly. However, this is simply not viable. I have one space and one space only. I need to make it just right for me and something that I will continue to love for more than seasonal trends. So spoiler alert, that means you won't be seeing any marble effect or copper everything in these here parts.

My advice for finding the right style for you is to utilise/exhaust Pinterest to its maximum. There are thousands (if not millions) of pictures, layouts, designs on there for you to sift through and stick onto your pinboard. Be strict with yourself though, get carried away with loads of different trends and styles you're pinboard could soon start to resemble a magazine. If this does happen, create a secondary pinboard and transfer over what there seems to be a lot of. So for me, I always seemed to pin more pictures of monochrome styles with a hints of glam, sparkle and texture than anything else so this told me that this is most likely the style right for me. If you keep coming back to the same look, you obviously love it.

So from these screenshots from my Home Décor Pinterest board which you can view in its entirety here, you can see that I love monochrome stripes with hints of metal and single colours. I also love texture so I have a lot of bed layouts with textured sheets and faux fur throws (plus I just love to comfy!) Having this central place for all of my inspiration is great as it keeps it organised in my mind and I can cherry-pick certain pieces to add to my room. 

I hope you have enjoyed reading this first instalment of this series! I'm really excited to get underway with this project and to share it on here with you guys! Let me know what you're favourite styles are and what decorating tips you have for me. 

Paris x

Monday, 4 January 2016

Ready for 2016...

Happy New Year, readers!

With 2015 wrapped up and put to bed, we are about to start a fresh new year and as customary, make a few new goals and resolutions. There's been less than a handful of resolutions that I have actually kept for longer than 3 months so I've switched it up and have a 'Plan of Action' instead.  I have borrowed this from my boyfriend who for the last few years has had these plans to advance his music career. I much prefer this term because I like goals and lists and most of all, ticking off those goals once achieved. Resolutions can be notoriously difficult to stick to, sometimes it just isn't possible nor pleasurable to go to the gym 4 times a week or completely cut out chocolate. I find regimental rules inadvertently set myself up for failure and I have never dealt with failure well. Therefore, my Plan of Action for 2016 is not a complete overhaul of my lifestyle, but achievable goals that when combined will make me feel better, happier and indirectly, healthier.

Before I jump into my Plan of Action, let me tell you a little bit about my 2015. When I look at the two halves of my year, they are very different. January to June was all about finishing university, working many hours a day on my assignments and sleeping for very few. I was incredibly stressed out and it showed. I lost my appetite completely and a patch of my hair (which thankfully is growing back now), my skin was breaking out because I wasn't putting in the time to have healthy and nutritious meals and replaced water with Lucozade and energy drinks. Not to mention I was incredibly emotional, having a total of 3 sobbing fits to lecturers and friends in the last few weeks of my degree. Fortunately, I was surrounded by my best friends who were always there to support me (and hand me another shot of tequila on our nights out a.k.a. therapy).

July to December was a little bit more rocky. Whilst I had finished university and graduated with a First (something I still cannot believe I managed to achieve), I felt a sudden sense of loss of my old life at university. I was no longer in my university shaped bubble that I had called home for the last 3 years. I was now seen as a graduate who needed to start being a real adult with a real salary-paid job. Feeling incredibly overwhelmed combined with dealing with the loss of my old life, my confidence took a major hit and I didn't feel good enough for the jobs I was looking at. I started to recluse and my emotions really took a toll on me and my relationships. In early November, I decided enough was enough. I went to my GP and confessed everything. I'm now on a stress and anxiety management course run by the NHS and on the waiting list to see a therapist. I've only been to 2 sessions of my course so far, but I feel so much better already. I will definitely do a post about this entire topic in the next few months because I think its important to talk about it and I've learnt a few new tips that someone could find useful.

So for 2016, this is what I would like to achieve...

1. Reach 200 YouTube subscribers.
I am currently at 35 subscribers so I do have some work to do. However, I've been brainstorming and planning video ideas so I hope with my creativity and consistency, I'll start to attract a few more viewers into my little community here.

2. Find a job in my chosen industry
It's important to me to have several things behind me to help me in the scary world of the job market. As my degree was largely creative, I have about 3 years worth of work in my portfolio, as well as this blog and my Youtube channel. I hope this will help future employers to see how passionate I am about what I want to do as I'm making it a part of my daily routine.

3. Secure a blogging/filming schedule and more importantly, stick to it!
A few months ago, I created a 12-month calendar print-out and have started planning what I want to create and share in the first 2 months of 2016. Every time I have an idea of either a blog post or a video, I'll jot it down and then brainstorm every Sunday evening about how I can give a life to this idea and where I can schedule it in for.

4. Decorate my room
I moved back home in June and all I have done to my room is arrange my furniture and buy a new bedside table from IKEA. I have been pinning away on Pinterest ideas and styles I like for my room and also what I want to get out of my room such as how I want to organise and store different things. I will definitely be doing a series on my blog and snippets on my channel this year to chronicle the process and give you some ideas if you are looking to update your bedroom or completely redecorate like me.

5. Work out more
I had to put a stereotypical resolution on there, didn't I? I used to work out quite frequently towards the end of 2014 before my 3rd year of uni started to get quite intense and I LOVED IT. Combined with better eating habits, I felt so much healthier and livelier. I want to get back to that state of happiness with both my body and my frame of mind.

6. Sell unwanted things at at least 2 boot sales
This goal is purely because I have way too much stuff for one person. It's the kind of stuff that I haven't used in years and it's just sitting in cardboard boxes, but also not the kind of stuff that needs to be thrown away.

7. Keep a daily mindfulness journal
As mentioned before, I've learnt from my stress and anxiety management course to really understand how I am feeling and use certain techniques to cope with it. I hope by keeping a daily journal of how I'm feeling I can unload some of the thoughts that are whirling around in my brain onto paper so they become easier to manage. Anyone else feel like they have about 250 tabs open in their brain?

8. Give more to charity
This is purely inspired by Louise from Sprinkle of Glitter. She has made several videos or mentioned that she and her daughter, Darcy are giving back to their community both to be or service and to teach Darcy the importance of giving and helping other people who need it the most. Whilst I don't have any children to share this with and my new nephew is too young to be involved in, I'd still like to do my bit to help out my local community it whatever way I can, whether thats through donating my time or products. I used to volunteer at a local rescue home for cats when I was about 12 years old and for about 5/6 years, I would help out every Saturday morning and it made me really happy because I was helping take care of and eventually find homes for cats and kittens, as well as getting to play with them too.

So there it is, my plan of action for 2016. I'm really excited about this new year and I think the overall vibe from my goals are to become a better version of myself by taking care of myself both mentally and physically to make me feel happier and more confident.

I hope you have a wonderful and safe New Year and will be a part of my journey whether you are a reader or a viewer! Tell me, what are your goals for 2016? I'd love to know.

Paris x