Thursday, 17 July 2014
The first is the last book in the 'Divergent' series by Veronica Roth: Allegiant. I loved the two previous books because of the ease I could read them- I fell deeply into the story so quickly and instantly loved the two main characters, Tris and Four, because both are far from perfect but manage to find a way of surviving the challenging world they find themselves in as it steadily moves into chaos. I'm about a quarter of the way through the book but I think I already prefer it to the previous two because of the massive twist that you find out towards the beginning (no spoilers, I promise!) which I thought was such a clever addition to the story and kept the momentum going as it gave the readers more to think about. Overall I'm so excited to continue reading and see how the series ends.
My other Amazon purchase was the Luckies of London Scratch Map of the United States. I contemplated buying one for the whole world but it feels a bit more personalised getting a more condensed version because I've loved travelling through the states and if I were to create a bucket list I'd definitely have 'visit every US state' so this could be my way of keeping track with it! I'm a bit scared to start scratching it because I don't want to ruin it, but I'll probably post a picture on my instagram when I do- I'm planning on framing it in my room when I've scratched off where I've been so far.
Next up are these gorgeous sunglasses that I found in a charity shop. I hadn't had much luck in my favourite charity shop for a while until I found these for £1.50! I'd had my eye on the similar raybans for a while but definitely couldn't justify the price so I'm glad I held out for these- the rose gold/rust rims make them look really nice!
The two rings are from the Topshop sale for £2.50 each. I always make sure I buy Topshop rings in the sale because they get tarnished the first time I wear them so I don't want to pay full price! They're both midi rings and fit in well to my little collection.
Finally, if you have read my other blog posts (anyone?) you might remember that I've wanted a particular product by The Balm since the beginning of the year. I finally got the Mary-Lou Manizer for my birthday at the beginning of June and have loved wearing it! It gives such an illuminating finish and has a touch of sparkle which makes it lovely to wear going out, very happy with this product!
What are your favourites at the moment?
Saturday, 12 July 2014
I've been a bit busy recently getting back into the swing of working- I feel like I haven't had much time to myself! As promised, here is a collection of my favourite snaps from my recent holiday:
New York City
New York City
Littleton - New Hampshire
Littleton - New Hampshire
I had such an amazing time on and have brought back so many memories- America continues to be my favourite place to travel to and I plan to return to visit some more of the states as soon as possible!
Monday, 30 June 2014
The above picture just goes to show how many hotels we stayed in this trip- I won't need to buy any shampoo and conditioner for a while!
From the duty-free shop in Niagara just before we crossed the boarder back to America, I bought this oversized 'Canada' hooded sweatshirt- complete with a picture of a beaver! I knew I wanted something Canada-related before we left so it was quite lucky that I found something I liked! This cost $24.99 which was very cheap in comparison to some of the ones I'd previous looked at!
I picked up the shoes for $9.99 in the Urban Outfitters sale. There is a cute hexagonal pattern on them and even though they remind me of the plimsolls I wore in Primary school I still really like them!
Both the lace top and grey skirt are from Forever 21. I thought the cream lace top would look nice with a pencil skirt for work and the texture and design of the skirt (it dips lower at the front and back) made it a must-have for me. Both of these items were $15-$19.
The striped crop-top was from the Zara sale, $9.99. It has the square back design that I really like in crop tops at the moment and the elasticated hem makes it a lot cuter. I'll be wearing this a lot this summer!
Lastly, I wanted to buy something special that I would use a lot to commemorate going back to one of my favorite places in the world: New York City. I'd walked past The Strand bookstore a few times during my trips and I love their motto 'where books are loved' so I thought that I'd remember my time here by buying one of their signature tote bags for $14.95.
We also managed to go to a Walmart in the US where I bought a couple of things. The first was this Revlon nail polish in the shade 'Minted' as I wanted to paint my nails a new colour while I was away. I had a look in the clearance section and managed to pick this up for $2.50 so I was very happy with that! From all the early mornings I felt like my face needed a little pick-me-up so I bought a new Neutrogena product to help me. I'd never used a power cleanser before and it makes my skin really soft! I've had a look at Amazon since and there are a few different varieties of refill packs available so I'll be stocking up from there when I run out! The product itself was about $9.00 and the refill packs were $5.00 so only a small decrease on the online prices.
Here is the miscellaneous section of my purchases. The first is your standard red plastic party cup that can be seen in every American teen house party in a movie. These are made out of thick plastic rather than the throw-away ones so I'll be able to keep it for longer, and I couldn't say no when they were $1!
I also bought a body spray from Forever 21 which supposedly smells like cherry blossom. I'll agree that it smells like this after the scent has died down, but beforehand it smells a bit odd so I won't be spraying this one in public! This cost $4.50.
Another thing I wanted to buy from Canada was maple syrup as it is known for it and I found an awesome stall in a food market selling these little glass bottles for $3. I've already tried it and it tastes so sweet- just need to make some pancakes to put it on now!
In Toronto we found the large indoor shopping mall and after 3 trips to the US looking for one, I finally found a Bath & Body Works that was easy to find! I didn't go all-out as we didn't have much time to shop before the mall closed but there was a 3 for $5 offer on their hand sanitisers so I got two while my Mum got one. I chose 'Perfect Beach Day' and 'Pink Chiffon'- both smell amazing!
I felt like I had to get some sweets for my team at work so also in the Duty-free shop I found these Niagara Falls saltwater taffy sweets. I've tried one and they are slightly too salty for me, but still taste alright.
Lastly I thought I would bring back the bottle of my favourite drink while I was away; flavoured Arizona Ice Tea. The raspberry one is my favourite, although I have no idea what I'm supposed to do with this glass bottle now!
My next post will probably be a gathering of my favourite pictures I took during the holiday- I did manage to post a video on my Instagram page every day while I was away so you can see what I got up to there if you're interested!
Hope you enjoyed this post!
Tuesday, 10 June 2014
As I mentioned in my April favourites, I'd been trying not to spend much money in May so that I had a lot more freedom when going shopping on holiday this week. It's been a lot easier as it was my birthday on the first of this month, so anything I wanted to buy I just said I would be getting for my birthday instead! I picked up a few things that I think are essential for travelling (on top of the obvious) and thought I would share them with you in a may favourites/travel essential mash-up.
My favourite thing to do when on holiday is to take pictures using my Nikon D3000 which I've had for a few years now and is a trusty camera that always seems to take a good-quality photo with ease. I love travel photography so a good SLR camera is essential for me to keep the best memories of the trip.
Another essential is music. Because of the 8-hour flight and travelling in a coach for a portion of the holiday my hefty iPod Classic needed an update; although I still need to put a few more recently released albums on there as most of it has been on there since I bought it 3-4 years ago! Another thing I like to do when travelling is save up all the YouTube videos I'd normally be watching and use a converter to put them on my iPod when I'm especially bored in the airport so that I can keep myself entertained with a few vlogs!
Headphones are also important as the ones they give you on aeroplanes are always the worst quality so I always make sure I have some in my bag that work really well; I've had my eyes on some rose gold ones I saw in TK max for a while but I'll keep with my older ones for now!
A product that I've recently decided is essential to a plane trip is a neck pillow. I've never seen the point in them, probably because I never sleep on planes, but I thought I'd get one for this trip because of the amount of travelling involved. I thought I would go all-out and get a memory foam one from TK Maxx as I assume that it will be a lot more comfortable than other types and because they clip at the front they can be attached to bags so they're not difficult to carry around. I also added some socks to my essentials as my feet always get really cold on the plane, especially when I'm wearing sandals to the airport!
Clothing-wise, I've just chosen the standard items that have found themselves in my suitcase as I've been packing. For the first time ever my Mum has commented that I haven't got enough clothes for the holiday in my bag, but I think this is because everything I've chosen is interchangeable so I can wear the same items a few times during the trip with different things. The 90's crop top has made its way back into shops and I love it. My favourite design comes from Miss Selfridge and I've bought three; the black and white striped (above) and the standard black and white ones. They go brilliantly with every other item of clothing I've packed; my black baggy trousers for travelling, kimonos, printed shorts, lace shorts and my two pairs of denim levi shorts. I've also packed a few more crop tops as they're perfect for hot weather as well as my birkenstock knock-offs from Primark which I really like. Shoes that are easy to take off are a good idea when going through baggage control to save time undoing laces and putting socks back on before you go through to duty free.
I always make sure I take my favourite beauty products with me on holiday with the help of some travel bottles from poundland, and my top choice is the Neutrogena Visably Clear range to clean and exfoliate my face and leave me feeling fresh each morning. I've already mentioned my love for Garnier's Micellar Water and it always does it's job of getting rid of all my makeup whatever I'm doing. I also like to bring my own shower gel simply because it smells a lot nicer than what is given in hotels!
Is there anything I've missed that is essential for my holiday?
Thursday, 29 May 2014
As I'm well due a blog post I thought I'd go back through my recent pins and talk about what has caught my eye on Pinterest recently. (clockwise, from top left)
1. My favourite beauty blogger/YouTuber is by far Estée of Essiebutton. She has such a nice and goofy personality that I feel like we'd be best friends if we met! She also has an amazing blog and two YouTube channels; I particularly like her vlog channel, Essiebuttonvlogs. The stalker in me loves to see what my favourite bloggers are up to and her little family with boyfriend Aslan and rescue Greyhound Reggie is adorable to watch. An added bonus is that she is Canadian which makes me love her a million times more so I love watching the vlogs when she goes home so I can have a peep before I go there in a couple of weeks. All in all, if you're not following this girl- you're making a mistake!
2. Just a bit of bedroom inspo, I love the combination of grey and orange- this bedding is gorgeous! Still need to do a bit more research into Macs because I'll probably get one when my current one reaches its end but I can't decide which one to get/whether I can justify the cost!
3. Blake Lively has just been getting it right clothing-wise this year. This dress is completely on-trend with its geometric skirt and the lace and gems just make it all the more gorgeous- a perfect outfit for Cannes film festival. Another clothing highlight was her stunning Met Gala 2014 dress which just oozed sexy Hollywood glamour. Love!
4. This image is from a really cute DIY tutorial on Curbly.com (which I am now adding to my favourites bar!) which covers up the boring plastic plant pots and turns them into something more groovy. I absolutely love the copper paper used as rose gold is such a pretty and stand-out colour. When I find an abundance of time I will be attempting these to jazz up my windowsill!
5. 'My Neighbour Totoro' is probably my favourite Studio Ghibli film. When I found these beautiful posters created by Olly Moss it brought me straight back to when I was little and watched this film for the first time. Ghibli movies are like Disney films to me so it was a nice bit of nostalgia to see a beautifully designed poster for this film.
6. Another inspo picture- I think I'm going to have to buy a print of this quote sometime soon because it's less cliché than most going round tumblr and I really like it!
That concludes my second 'Note to Self' post- I'm going to do at least one of these a month and think of some other interesting posts to make in-between!
(just to add that I'll be posting a lot more when my life gets slightly more interesting- hoping to make a few pre-holiday posts as well as a big post when I'm back!)
Thursday, 8 May 2014
April has been a somewhat average month- not much seems to have happened that's worth a note! However, I have purchased/rediscovered a few items this month which are definitely worth a mention.
Although they're not part of my favourites this month, my windowsill always looks cute because I absolutely love buying little knick-knacks. I'm very surprised that my cacti have survived this long, I keep forgetting to water them but I haven't seen any sign of death yet! I found the holder in a charity shop and threw out the candles it was holding in favor of my cacti. The heart-shaped stone also on the windowsill is from a plant shop; it says 'love life' on it which is a sweet, if slightly cliché, motto.
Moving on to the items that I have been loving this month, I've started to wear my boyfriend jeans a lot more recently! I bought them at the beginning of the year from Primark and wasn't 100% sure what they would look good with, so I opted for the standard stripy top and blazer combo that always seems to work no matter what sort of jeans you're wearing. This month I've been a bit more daring and have worn them with everything, although I prefer to wear them with slightly more feminine clothes because of the masculine fit. Plain white t-shirts and sandals will be my choice this summer!
Speaking of sandals, I bought this gorgeous pair- again in Primark. I'd had my eye on some similar ones in River Island for £30, but was still deciding whether they would be worth it. I was ecstatic when I saw a very similar pair for £8, so bought them in both black and white. They're a very versatile shoe because they could be paired with jeans, shorts, skirts and dresses so they're a good purchase for the summer.
The black faux leather clutch bag is from Topshop and I managed to find it in the sale for £15. I love the pattern and it's an added bonus that it comes with straps which can be removed as to what you're doing and how you want to wear the bag. It's a good-sized clutch as it's thin but a lot can fit inside if you want it to- I always judge my clutches on whether or not I can fit any flats in when my feet hurt on a night out!
This cute navy polka-dot bikini top is something I've been searching for ever since I booked my holiday to Portugal; the cut of the bikini top and the frills make it adorable! I've been buying a few mix-and-match bikini's in the last few months so that I have more options and combinations and thought that this bikini would go perfectly- just need to feel a bit more comfortable wearing them!
My two skincare products are ones that I bought quite a while ago but thought they deserved a mention. 'Vanilla Dee-Lite' by Lush Cosmetics is one of the nicest body lotions I've ever smelt and it works so well as a hand moisturiser- I've had it for a while but hadn't wanted to use it all up because it smelt so good!
My other favourite-smelling product is Soap & Glory's 'Scrub Actually', which is made with apricot kernel oil which is what gives it a beautiful scent. As well as smelling amazing, the scrub itself leaves my face baby-smooth and (obviously) the packaging is always a favourite!
I've got my eye on the two almond-scented products from Soap & Glory next- hoping that I'll get them for my birthday!
I'm trying not to spend as much money this month so I have more money to go shopping in New York next month, so if you'll accept a boring May Favourites I'll trade you an interesting June Favourites?
Tuesday, 29 April 2014
As the excitement of booking days off at work for holiday is uncontrollable, this evening I found myself browsing through my Flickr account and having a look at some of my old holiday photos from the past couple of years.
The above image is one of my favourites from 2012; I went on a coach trip around California, Nevada and Arizona with my family and it was so much fun! Coach trips are a great way to see as much as possible and with a guide always on-hand you know you're going to get a lot out of a trip rather than getting lost or missing the best picture spots! At the point of the photo we were in the coach heading towards Bell Rock in Sedona, Arizona and everything was absolutely beautiful!
This year, I'm very lucky to be going on two holidays, the first being a coach trip but around Northeastern America and into Canada- I've wanted to go to Canada for years so I'm really looking forward to it! I'm also going to Portugal with my boyfriend, it'll be our first holiday together so I'm very excited! Below are a few of my favourite pictures from holidays over the past few years, hope you enjoy!