Sunday, 28 June 2015

Summer Brights

With the weather being warm and some sassy temperatures coming to the UK next week (supposedly!) I am very much enjoying busting out my bright accessories. I love happy, bright colours, so here are some of my favourite ways to add some umph to a simple outfit or take it from day to evening.

1. A bright bag: If colour scares you a bit but you want to incorporate it into an outfit, this is a safe way to go. For me, the brighter the better, without looking like a 90s neon worshipper....that being said, I am partial to neon too! 

Bags from left to right: Michael Kors, Kate Spade and Forever21

2. A statement necklace: Most shops carry these and although they are useful at all points during the year, bright, fun colours can take a simple white t-shirt and make it look like a sophisticated, put together outfit. Oasis and JCrew have some gorgeous ones. 

3. Coloured t-shirt: If it's too hot and sticky to be chucking on a heavy necklace, stick to a light and bright T. Pair it with a calmer toned pair of shorts and you're good to go, oozing summer-ness as you do so.
T-shirt from Next's Summer Collection

4. Scarves: This might be a odd one when you're considering humidity but depending on where you live (or the air con) wearing a bright, summer coloured scarf can add a bit of protection in the evening when things get a bit chilly. Anyone who has had a BBQ on a summer's evening in the UK will know exactly what I mean. Will I wear a scarf in Florida this summer? No, but I do like adding them to plain bags to jazz them up a bit. Just be careful that colours don't transfer!
Scarf from Stella and Dot

5. Flip flops, Sandals and Shorts: If you're happy to, wear prints on your bottom half with a neautral t-shirt or cami on top. If shorts tend to make you feel uncomfortable, or you don't fancy wearing something that says 'look at my patterned hind quarters', then go for one of the many Aztec type of sandals that are available.

Sandals from New Look and shorts from Acessorize

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Summer Nails!

From left to right: Essence, Essie's blanc, Sephora's Formula X in Hercules, Clinique's Hi Sweetie, OPI's Drip Dry drops and Sally Hansen's 220 Cafe A Lait

Off the back of Jen's Christian Louboutin nail varnish post, I have been busting out my summer shades. I'm not one for nail art, not because I don't like it but because I do not have the patience or co-ordination to be creative. However, I love colours and bright nails make me happy! 

1. White: Classic, somewhat classy, beautiful with a tan and seems to be ever so popular with brides this summer. Move over French Manicure. However, be careful with top coats. Some can turn the white a bit beige or even a light pink. Pretty but not the white that you started with.

Essie's 'blanc'

2. Hot Pink: This will always be my favourite. Any variation from a reddy pink to a true fuchsia.

3. Nude: This is a good one for travelling when you don't mind if your nails get a little chipped from lifting cases (and carrying duty free shopping bags) because it gives nails a bit of umph without being obvious and, therefore, the chips aren't obvious either.

4. Orange: There are two times of year that I wear orange colours: Summer and Halloween. If I can resemble a Caribbean island and a pumpkin, then I'm happy.

Christian Louboutin's Escatin

5. Gloss it: Can't be bothered with the upkeep on holiday? Use a nice top coat and gloss up your nails. Bourjois 1Seconde Top Coat is my favourite.  Long lasting and gives a gel look.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Christian Louboutin Scarabée nail polish

You might recall our excitement last summer when Christian Louboutin nail varnish turned up at Selfridges, accompanied by an exclusive David Lynch film. Well a new limited edition collection has now arrived! These beautiful nail polishes form part of the designer's Scarabée collection and the multifaceted jewel tones are inspired by the iconic Egyptian Scarab beetle.

There are three iridescent shades, which change colour depending on the light you are under. "They can look beautiful and reflective under the bright sun but also look like a precious jewel by night", says Louboutin.

The accompanying press images of the legendary designer exploring Egypt are nothing short of genius....

According to the Louboutin website these nail varnishes are so highly pigmented and glossy that in just two coats they achieve the effect of 20 layers of traditional lacquer! A bold claim... but then again, when has Louboutin ever let us down?

£36 each,

Saturday, 13 June 2015

YBBF Fitness: T25

As a teenager and young adult, I danced 90% of the time and didn't even think about fitness. Those days are a thing of the past. Recently, to build stamina and relax, I have been going for a jog. I really enjoy it but when I say jog, I mean the kind of run   that is a menander, being overtaken by snails. It doesn't really act as a calorie busting experience and nor would I want it to. It's about 'me' time and de-stressing.
However, recently, I've wanted something that was more dance like and pushed my endurance. So, I decided to invest in Focus T25. This is what it is in a nutshell:
• A set of at home, DVD workouts. 
• There is a coach that takes you through the exercises and some sweaty looking volunteers! 
• It's a 25min workout – I love that it's a short amount of time. I actually fit it into my day without making random excuses.
• It's from the same company and man as the Insanity workouts. However, that's all a bit fitness heavy for m.
• There are a variety of DVDs that range from Lower Focus to Ab Intervals to Whole Body Circuit. 
• There are different intensities so that you can complete the exercises without feeling totally drained. However, you are supposed to continually move for the 25 mins.
• The fitness guru, Shaun T is truly hilarious. I don't think he's meant to be but his commentary about Derrick and Scott's squats keep me utterly entertained.
• You are constantly reminded that 'Tanya's just had a baby' and yet she looks like she could compete in a triathlon. I'm not sure if that's motivational or demoralising!
 Tanya, the modifier, is on the left. If I looked like this after having a baby, I would be thrilled!

• There are two sets of DVDs; the Alpha and Beta. Alpha is where you start and you are meant to do this for five weeks before moving onto the Beta. I have to say, I have dabbled in both and I prefer the variety of Beta. However, both are very good. 
• You are meant to workout five days a week, doing two DVDs on a Friday. However, I don't double up and I have seen results without following the plan 100%. There is also a day that you are encouraged to stretch. This really helps muscles recover and is relaxing to do. 
• I saw results after three workouts. My skin looked toned and I looked more in shape. However, I originally started this to push my stamina, so this was just a bonus! I have continued to improve. 
• I am not the only one that has found it successful. My sister looked great when she first started (and continues to do so!) and I have had friends who have said the same thing. 
• My muscles haven't ached too badly. I've done the cool downs and stretches, so, it hasn't been a problem. However, those who put 100% into each exercise might find it to be a different experience! 
• It's expensive. It costs £105.96. If you buy it from, you can pay in three monthly installments of £35.32 and if you don't think it's any good, you can send it back after the first thirty days and you won't pay the remainder. 
• For some, the over enthusiastic American whoops and cheers might be a bit much. I find it thoroughly entertaining but it's worth a mention. There is also an option to switch off the music if you want to focus on the movements. 
• There are meal plan suggestions and an online forum to keep up motivation. I don't do either of these things. 
• The exercises do require coordination. I love it because there is a dance quality but saying this, my boyfriend can do all of the moves and he has the dance ability of....someone who can't dance! 

These are my honest views. We are not sponsored by the company and I bought the DVDs with my own money. Please let me know if you have tried it and how it worked out for you. Do you keep to the order or do you do your own thing? 

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette

Urban Decay has announced the latest addition to its best-selling Naked range.... the smoky palette. The Naked 1, 2 and 3 palettes have proven so popular – frequently selling out and gaining cult status along the way – that the hype accompanying this latest announcement isn't surprising. There aren't many products that have memes generated in their honour before they've even hit the shelves!

Like its predecessors, the smoky palette contains 12 universally flattering, blendable shadows. There are nine completely new shades and three exclusive ones, ranging from pastels and neutral browns to metallic greys and plums. Based purely on the picture below, this is one product that I'm very keen to get my hands on. I love a good smoky eye and this palette appears to have everything you need to create loads of different looks, making it ideal for travel. Let the count down begin!

Available July 8th

Friday, 5 June 2015

Sugar Free June: Quick and Easy Yummy Snacks

Craving sugar is a natural process. Hormones, stress, tiredness or our bodies going sugar cold turkey will prompt a craving or two. 
Luckily, there are few snack options that help the process. For a special treat, I have a few scoops of Booja Booja's Hunky Punky Chocolate ice cream. It tastes very rich and creamy. Best of all, it's sweetened with agave. Hurrah! No sugar! It certainly helps those cravings.

Another option is to make your own fruit juice. Packaged ones are full of excess sugars and often contain preservatives that really are not that great. I tend to eat no more than two pieces of fruit per day and if I want a sweet treat, I blend a couple of pears, or a pear and an apple with ice and water. 
I have been taking it to work on days that I know I might be tempted to reach for a sugary treat. It also makes a yummy breakfast drink. 

Sugar free natural yoghurt with a scoop of Dalfour jam is a good after diner treat. The jam is totally sugar free and has big chunks of fruit in it. My favourite is the Black Cherry, which is also yummy when it's stirred into my morning porridge.