5 Things: What’s On My iPhone.

posted on: 19 April, 2014

I have to say, this is one of my most requested posts! I suppose the Apps on someone’s iPhone say a lot, my phone is packed with silly things that I occasionally use, and I have over 3500 photos. Ouch. Let me talk you through the best apps I use…

I have two ‘folders’ of apps (what’s the proper word for them?) that can be filed under Work for me, since social media takes up a lot of what I do – so I have ‘Productivity’ and ‘Social’. Apart from the obvious, the main ones I use are Pages for my Facebook Page and Hootsuite for scheduling my tweets in the morning – very important as a blogger. I actually don’t do much work on my phone because I have a work computer and then also a laptop if I’m being really lazy – although we usually only use it to watch Everybody Loves Raymond. Continuously. Every day.
For notes I have Evernote, this is amazing for writing down little ideas and things. I make so, so many notes so it’s crucial I have something like this on hand! I also have just about every social media account going, as well as What’s App, Messenger (for Facebook), FaceTime and the rest. Oh, and some banking apps – exciting. PayPal too, this really is getting thrilling.

Photography & Editing
As you’re probably aware, I’m addicted to Instagram – I have a number of apps for editing photos. I told you all about Afterlight a little while back, this is great for editing everything – from brightness to exposure to adding light filters and textures. I also have Mextures, which adds lovely light filters to photos, and PicFX for bokeh effects. I think this is really all you need to take smashing photos really.

Gosh, I have so, so many little apps that can be filed under lifestyle. I love the Kindle app, I read so many books so this is really handy to have on your phone as it syncs with other devices. It’s great for long train journeys or appointments with late friends! I also have the Trainline app for train tickets, Airbnb for pretending I’m booking a holiday and also the Jet2 app because they do great cheap flights. I also use MyFitnessPal to keep up with all the rubbish I’m eating and of course, the Egg Timer app. This thing is amazing, you can choose how you like your eggs and then it times it perfectly. Wouldn’t be without it.
I also have the eBay app for finding random items, and Pinterest for my relentless pinning! I’m addicted.
Oh, I have the Nike Running app too. Maybe just for Ellie Goulding giving the congratulatory message.

Helpful Apps
First up, Shazam. You know when you’re in a shop and you CANNOT remember who sings this song, or you just need to know the name and artist so you can download immediately? Shazam listens to the track and tells you who it’s by, and it only needs about 10 seconds of the song to work it out. That’s why sometimes you see people in bars up on chairs with their phone next to the speaker. Not me though… well, maybe once.
I also have the Gumtree app, as well as Rightmove and Zoopla – we’re flathunting at the moment and I spend around 3 hours a day on these last two. Gah! I’m actually worried what I’ll do with myself when I don’t need to look for a flat anymore.

I don’t often play games on my phone, I usually read my Kindle or go on Twitter or something, but recently Jordan and I started playing this game called FourInARow, it’s just Connect4 but wow, so addictive! Sometimes I play it on my own against the computer – how tragic. That’s really all there is under Fun, obviously too busy with my terrible life eh.

So that’s pretty much it for my iPhone – phonecase is from Alphabet Bags by the way. What do you have on your iPhone/iPad?

Some of these products may have been sent to me for review. For more information, see my disclaimer.

The Fine Hair Kit.

posted on: 18 April, 2014

It sometimes feels like I’m the only blogger with hair on the fine/thin side – what I wouldn’t do for lovely, thick locks! I guess this is good in some ways as at least I can test and trial the products that might save your locks. I find with my hair that it’s very flat and yet also very tangled, so I have to find products that detangle and hydrate without weighing it down or leaving it looking lank, and also thicken it up without products looking obvious in my hair. Sigh! So here’s a few ‘kit essentials’ I think make all the difference when it comes to fine, thin hair.

Reverse Washing
You may have heard me, or just about everyone else, talking about reverse washing recently; I’ve been doing it for the last week or two and haven’t looked back. It’s perfect for my fine hair, especially when it was long (I’ve just had it all cut off, eek!). The idea is to use conditioner first, massage it in and leave for a minute, rinse out and then follow with your shampoo – just massage it in and rinse out. It’s literally just your usual routine but backwards. A lot of the time when you use conditioner, especially on fine hair types, you can’t wash it all out and so hair looks greasy and weighed down even straight after washing. Not nice! I had a period of this from the last few months, and this reverse washing has completely saved me. I just use my usual shampoo and conditioner choice, which is just the Herbal Essences classics – usually the yellow one. Thank God the original formulas are back, I’ve been waiting so long for this.
I know the whole reverse washing sounds gross but it will change your life – I dare you to try it and tweet me and let me know how you got on!

Leave In Conditioner
I swear by a detangling leave-in conditioner, especially now I’m reverse washing my hair, but even before that. The fine mist of conditioner allows you to nourish, smooth and detangle the hair without weighing down the hair – I have a couple of favourites, right now the Sachajuan Leave In Conditioner (£21) is my everyday product but I will never, ever be without a bottle of the Dove Nourishing Oil Care Leave In Conditioner (£3.59) – this stuff is divine and smells like a bathtub of heaven. Yep.
These will mean hair is much easier to brush through, therefore resulting in less breakage and healthier, shinier hair.

Tangle Teezer
I don’t think my life would be complete without a Tangle Teezer – I think I own four now! FOUR. I love them. My hair gets seriously tangly, I’ve actually just had it all cut because I couldn’t handle the constant dreadlocks (or as Jordan calls them, my rat tails). I use the Tangle Teezer Aqua Splash (£10) the most, it’s designed to be used on wet hair and it’s amazing for detangling after washing your hair. It’s also great for brushing through conditioning treatments in the shower too.

A Light Hair Oil
I used to think hair oils weren’t for me, I would use them lightly on my damp hair but by the time my hair was dry, the ends were completely greasy. They were just too rich for my hair type, even if I just used a pea-sized amount. I then found the L’Oreal Mythic Oil (£13.60), a product I’ve been using for YEARS. This stuff is my saviour, it really helps to smooth and hydrate the ends and it leaves my hair looking so swishy and glossy. Plus you can apply pumps and pumps of this and it’s always absorbed – I’ve never had a greasy-haired experience from using this. Plus, it smells amazing.
I wouldn’t really recommend anything else, I’ve tried so many others but they’re all designed for really dry hair and they’re far too rich. Best stick to this one, I use it every day and I’m actually embarrassed to say I still have the same bottle I got in a Glossybox four years ago. I store it well though!

A Salt Spray
I find salt sprays do wonders for my hair, they really add volume and thickness better than any other product. I discovered the Kerastase Spray A Porter (£17.25) recently and I haven’t looked back, it uses their special technology to ensure hair is tousled and textured but without the crispy feeling! Seriously, there’s no signs you have a salt spray in your hair – well, apart from your effortless beachy ‘do obviously. I get actual waves when I use this, which is AMAZING. I can’t recommend this stuff enough for adding volume and texture.

Volumising & Texture Products
In terms of adding life and body to my hair, I have an old favourite in the Oribe Maximista Thickening Spray (£25) – I use this stuff most days and a lot of people don’t even know I have quite thin hair naturally. I think it’s heat activated so I only use it when I blowdry my hair, and then use a circular brush to add body at the roots. This really delivers, I can’t believe how much volume it adds to my flat hair!
I’ve also just started using the Bumble and bumble Grooming Creme (£22) – which is a kind of ‘do all’ product that results in an effortless, tousled look to the hair. Just a little bit of product really allows you to get a bit of body in to the hair, and it gives it a nice undone, tousled finish. I used to use the Texture (Un) Dressing Creme (£22) from the brand, and while I haven’t got rid of it just yet, the Grooming Creme is less sticky and generally gets a more natural finish in my hair. I will post a full review of this if you’re interested.

Dry Shampoo
Now, we all know that if you have fine, flat hair, dry shampoo is a MUST. Seriously, I own bottles of the stuff, but I have noticed that all I use now is the Bumble Pret-A-Powder (£21.50) – this stuff is my dream product. It’s a dry shampoo, style extender and volumising powder in one – you just shake it on and massage it in. I don’t just add it to the roots either, I work it in to the lengths to make my hair appear fuller – it’s amazing for working in to waves and curls for a little extra body. I know this stuff is talked about everywhere, but you really can’t live without it.
I shake a good amount in my hair before bed (without massaging it in) so I wake up with a really undone, but not greasy look. It’s amazing stuff, it really freshens up and cleanses the hair, and it smells incredible. If you buy one product, make sure it’s this!

Of course, you don’t need every product here (I wrote ‘hair’ there instead, too much hair chat) but it’s a guide to understanding what works for your hair and what doesn’t. I have made so many purchases for my hair and it just hasn’t worked out – I actually find it hard to hydrate my hair as everything is aimed at really dry hair, but I find leaving a mask in my hair overnight or even for twenty minutes and then washing it out with shampoo works a treat. It goes back to reverse shampooing, but there’s so many thick hair products (and even things like coconut oil) that won’t come out of your hair without shampooing, so I do think it’s essential.

I would say a good hair kit would contain the Dove Leave-In Conditioner, the Pret A Powder and either the salt spray or the Oribe Maximista – you can then add in anything else if you need it. Remember, the good thing about fine hair is that you only need to use a TINY bit of product each time, so it’s worth investing in premium brands where possible because they last years. Finally, something good about fine hair eh.

Remember to dry reverse washing and let me know your thoughts!

Anything else to add for us fine hair girls? Share the wealth…

Some of these products may have been sent to me for review. For more information, see my disclaimer.

Evening Skincare Routine.

posted on: 17 April, 2014


I think I’ve been promising this video for roughly a year now, I’m not sure why it’s taken me so long but here it is in full – with actions. I hope you like the format, because you all requested it!

I guess compared to most I have quite an easy routine, I always start by removing my makeup using an oil cleanser and then I use a balm to cleanse my skin and make sure it’s purified. I then cleanse to remove any leftover grime, cleanser etc. and freshen up my skin and then follow with another facial spritz to soothe and hydrate.
I then use an eye cream to moisturise and brighten, and follow this with a serum. I’ve been pretty loyal to my Kiehl’s Skin Recovery serum over the last 6months or so but I think I’ll probably use up some of my other serums after I finish it up, as it is nearly empty. I’ll see how I feel after I go without it for a month or so, because my skin loves it and it feels so hydrating. I have a lovely Erborian serum to try next and they’re one of my favourite brands at the moment so it will be nice to try something different.

Overall, I have a reasonably natural approach to my skincare. I don’t think (for me) embracing natural products should be like being vegetarian,  you should be able to flit between them – but ultimately I find natural products are more beneficial and my skin prefers them.

I’ve listed the products in the description so you can see more about them there. Enjoy!

Some of these products may have been sent to me for review. For more information, see my disclaimer.

Brights & Prints.

posted on: 17 April, 2014

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I get asked a lot for advice for styling outfits, I guess because I wear a lot of colour. I actually don’t have much black in my wardrobe bar skinny jeans, I feel far more comfortable embracing corals and mint greens. When New Look asked me to style up some pieces from their new Tropical Surf collection, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to pass on a few tips.

First up, prints. Prints and patterns can be hard to style because they can end up looking a little wacky. I chose the New Look Tropical Print Pencil Skirt (£14.99) because it has a lovely pattern and the shape is flattering too. This is actually a midi skirt but I just folded it up a little to make it a little shorter – two skirts in one y’all. I think the shorter length makes it more casual, but for evening attire I would wear it at midi length. The key with prints is to pick a colour or two within the print and work with it for the rest of your outfit – I went for coral and white because I prefer them over blue or green. It’s okay to clash colours and patterns – I tend to try them on and take a long hard look at myself in the mirror to make sure they really do work. Clashing is exactly what I’ve done here – in the first look I went for this gorgeous New Look Palm Tree Jumper (£9.99). This is my favourite item at the moment, I love anything exotic like this and the simple small print on the white jumper makes it really easy to work in with bolder prints. Jumpers styled over bodycon skirts are a great way to flatter your finger without looking frumpy – the skirt accentuates legs and bum while the jumper disguises my er, washboard abs (ahem). Saying that, sometimes I throw on a jumper and feel it looks a little unflattering – I’m pretty top heavy so what I tend to do is tuck the jumper in to the skirt at the front, it makes it a little more chic and does wonders for the figure. You can also tie it up or tuck in only the front section. I love the bright pops of colour from the skirt against the crisp white jumper, it looks really polished but also a little effortless.

In the second look, I took the coral hues from the skirt and paired with it this gorgeous New Look Crochet Hem Tshirt (£9.99) – I have to admit, I already have this top in white from awhile back but the coral one is a more recent release and I adore it! Cute tops like this can be worn with just about anything so they’re a great wardrobe staple. The coral ties in nicely with the pops of colour from the skirt, and the almost-cropped length means that it stops at just the right place to be flattering. If you aren’t feeling the coral, opt for the white version instead – it will look so good with a tan and bare legs. Oh, summer – where are you?

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I have to admit that I can sometimes be a little lazy with accessories, too many gold necklaces and black handbags! I think it’s good to tie in your accessories, but sometimes it doesn’t matter so much. I went for this lovely Coral Structured Satchel (£15.99), because I think it’s nice to add in more colour where possible but also go for something smart to tie in with the casual vibe. The structured style of this bag (I always go for structured bags) really pulls it all together perfectly. You could go for a black bag as there are darker sections in the skirt but I prefer the extra dose of colour.

Finally, I went for this lovely pair of New Look Lace Up Gladiator Sandals (£16.99) – these are minimal but also tie in with the summery theme. I usually buy shoes in quite neutral colours because they will go with everything – these look perfect with a pair of black skinnies. I prefer wear sandals with skirts and bare legs as I think they’re more flattering on the legs than ballet pumps. You could absolutely go for a brighter pair of shoes though, especially if you’re keeping the accessories minimal. I would keep one bright and one neutral, when it comes to bag and shoes.

I hope you liked this little piece on styling brights and prints!


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Disclosure: Compensation was provided by New Look via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of New Look.

Some of these products may have been sent to me for review. For more information, see my disclaimer.