22 January 2017

The Lust List: 20% off River Island

Whilst my chunky knits have been in strong rotation and my 100 deniers livin' it large, I'm ready to shake off the old and be in with the new. Well, within my very, very slim January budget that is. Having sneakily spotted a savvy 20% River Island discount in Grazia, I practically snapped up the star blouse in a heartbeat. And then of course whilst casually adding more pieces to my never cashing out basket, I stumbled across these... pretty impressive huh?

Trench (£75) ∙ Star blouse (£30) ∙ Oversized jumper (£40)  Navy stripe top (£22)  Pink coat (£75)  Cable knit jumper (£36) ∙ Midi skirt (£35) ∙ Star lace top (£38) ∙ Faux suede grey biker (£55) ∙ Trophy coat (£75)

20% off with the code: GRAZIAJAN17 - quick as it finishes Monday night!

In stark contrast to the likes of Topshop with this hideous monstrosity and this eyesore (open links at your own peril) - River Island seems to have stepped up a gear. I kind of want it all. Especially the knitwear. And the trench. And the lace star print blouse. 


23 December 2016

Style: How to nail the sale season

I like to think I have many talents. One could say these would range from (my secret) hip hop karaoke skills to whipping up an excellent get-out-of-gym excuse on the spot. Another however is my knack of sale shopping. Online that is. I have no time for spending Boxing Day in none other than my pjs and bashing open a chocolate orange.

Just call me mystic meg, but to the joy of my pals I can predict the start date of the Topshop sale (without any insider info) and I can expertly track down that last cashmere sweater for less than half price. Does this make me incredibly materialist? Perhaps. But at least I scored my next season pair of boots at a fraction of the cost. So I'll take the term savvy thank you.

Rule 1: Get real

First thing we need to nail here, a sale snip is only truly a bargain if you wanted it (and you were kinda tempted to buy it..) when it was full price. OR it is an offer simply too good to miss - in your head, not your heart. Otherwise come the first month or two of the new year you'll be broke as shit with only a spur of the moment designer fail purchase to show for it.

Rule 2: Suss it out

Be firm, be strong and be totally clued up on what you need, not just what you want now. Right now my wardrobe is lacking occasion dresses (I already have two weddings lined up for next year), a pastel coat that will carry me through to spring, flats (that aren't leopard print - oops) and my knitwear, bra and basic t-shirt collection could really do with an overhaul.

What I don't need is: handbags, beauty bits, jeans or boots. Will I be tempted? Of course I bloody will. But at a time in my life where I ironically I have never had such a corker of a bank balance, that is strictly reserved for overpriced bricks and mortar aka: my house deposit.

Rule 3: Make a list

With that in mind, here is what you should look out for:

Anything cashmere. Knitwear, socks, scarves, gloves - anything. And before you roll your eyes, it's a wise investment that you'll be thanking yourself for years to come.

Anything classic. Be that a winter coat, the perfect grey jumper, a pair of black chelsea boots or stripy breton top.

Something worth the splurge. Dresses (that aren't strictly for the festive period), knitwear (hello Hush), small leather goods (hello Mulberry) or pieces that you could never justify (my weakness is an Aspinal travel wallet).

The essentials: bras from M&S, gym gear, basic t-shirts from Gap and knickers - because you can never have enough knickers.

When it comes to beauty, snap up any skincare / haircare sets that include products from your daily routine. I almost always stock up on Origins and Bumble & Bumble sets. Stay clear of any Christmas beauty make-up sets, you'll only regret it, however tempting.

I actually picked up this Bumble & Bumble thickening set for £13.20 as it is reduced, free delivery and has a welcome 10% off - insane!

Rule 4: It's all in the prep

Make an action plan and get prepped.

Topshop have launched their shoe sale, next will be accessories and partywear (today) and quietly they will do a full hidden launch by Christmas eve at latest. I already have a list of saved items in my bag that I have added (wishfully) around the year that I have my eye on. That way I can log in, take a peak without being side tracked, bobs your uncle, ordered.

As well as saved shopping lists - ASOS saved items is also a massive winner - when I have a sneaky window browse in general I also pin bits and bobs that catch my eye to a secret Pinterest board, that also help me plan my blog wish-lists.

Places I will be stalking:

Whistles: for dresses (and accessories I don't need)
Topshop: for old times sake
Hush: for everything
Boden: for stripes
John Lewis: for beauty
M&S: for bras and cashmere

Worth a look:

Zara: even if they only knock a couple of quid off
Mulberry: so I can pretend
Oliver Bonas: so I can dither

What have you got your eye on for the sale season? If anything. Maybe I'll start the new year off in a new manner I'll wish to continue - not broke.


1 December 2016

The Ultimate Gift Guide: 2016

As we tiptoe into December, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Feeling well and truly festive, I have once again compiled my ultimate annual gift guide for your perusal. Whether for your gal pals, sisters, mothers - or yourself - here is my collection of the most oh so tempting must-have beauty finds, interior treasures and coveted wardrobe wants.

So without further ado, go forth and browse...


Bralet set - Topshop ∙ Heart keyring - Mulberry ∙ Pink organiser - Kikki K ∙ Handbag stickers - Kate Spade ∙ 
Personalised diary - Paperchase ∙ Cashmere blend pj bottoms - M&S ∙ Heart of gold bangle - Kate Spade ∙ 
Hammered ring - Monica Vinader ∙ Gloves - Oliver Bonas Pizza work out bottle - Bando ∙ Busy folders - Bando ∙ 
Wine rack - Oliver Bonas ∙ Just a note set - Studio Sarah ∙ Star stickers - Topshop


Constellation necklace - Hush ∙ Gold phone set - Selfridges  ∙ Dressing gown - M&S ∙ Stamp set - Kate Spade ∙ 
Monogram keyring - Kikki K  ∙ Brush collection - Bobbi Brown ∙ Card holder - YSL ∙ Camera - Nikon  ∙ 
Lipstick - Charlotte Tilbury  ∙ Moon earrings - Oreila ∙ Bee candle - Paperchase ∙ Advent calendar - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ 
Knickers - Victoria Secrets ∙ Watch - Nixon


Book ends - Oliver Bonas  ∙ Eyeshadow quad - Tom Ford ∙ Mint lamp - Oliver Bonas ∙ Bottle opener - Oliver Bonas ∙ 
Hand cream set - Laura Mercier ∙ Prosecco gummies - John Lewis ∙ Cactus stand - Oliver Bonas ∙ Star earrings - Oreila ∙ 
Bow note set - Sugar Paper ∙ Compact mirror - Kate Spade ∙ Animal print mug - House of Hackney ∙ Chain bag - Aldo ∙ 
Cashmere gloves - John Lewis ∙ Gold jewellery box - Next  


Wonder sign - M&S ∙ Gift of glow - Pixi ∙ Star bangle - Orelia ∙ Copper clock - Made ∙ Trainers - Adidas ∙ 
Make up bag - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ Nude clutch bag - Whistles ∙ Bralette - Calvin Klein ∙ Pouches - Mulberry ∙ Pineapple ring - I+I ∙ 
Gold candle - Kikki K ∙ Silver candle - Kikki K ∙ Bronze candle - Kikki K ∙ Copper mirror - Boots ∙ Palm personalised note cards - Papier  


Card holder - Kate Spade ∙ Floral iPhone case - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Wire tray - Kikki K  ∙ Manhattan print - Rifle Paper Co ∙ 
Stationery set - Kate Spade ∙ Stacking ring - Monica Vinader ∙ Chocolates - Charbonnel et Walker ∙ 
Hair bobbles - Invisibobble ∙ Monogram notepad - Kate Spade ∙ Pineapple - Oliver Bonas ∙ Personalied palm notebook - Papier ∙ 
Luggage tag - Bando ∙ Jewellery box - Kate Spade ∙ Creme de la creme mug - Kate Spade ∙ Lipstick - Dior 


Colour block jumper - Hush ∙ Cake mug - Kate Spade  ∙ Apron - Kate Spade  ∙ Pink bracelet - Monica Vinader ∙ 
2017 Diary - Kate Spade ∙ Flower eye band - Liberty ∙ Pouches - Mulberry ∙ Prosecco bon bons - John Lewis ∙ 
Party eyes set - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ Art stick duo - Bobbi Brown ∙ Etoile jumper - Hush ∙ Survival of the fittest set - Nars 


Nude matte bag - Whistles ∙ Perfume - Kate Spade ∙ Hoop & stud set - Accessorize ∙ Constellation calendar - Rifle Paper Co ∙ 
Circle necklace - Orelia ∙ Charger - Skinny-dip ∙ Lace set - Topshop ∙ Trinket boxes - M&S Bracelet - Hush ∙ 
On the glow set - Becca ∙ Copper lights - Oliver Bonas ∙ Christmas socks - Topshop ∙ Sparkle all day - Stila ∙ 
Mini metallic bag - Topshop ∙ Sheepskin slippers - Topshop 


Appointment calendar - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Alphabet stickers - Topshop ∙ Palm print mug - House of Hackney ∙ 
Gold stapler - Kikki K ∙ Floral pencils - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Weekly planner - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Pom pom hat - Miss Selfridge ∙ 
Gold pen - Kikki K ∙ Tonic gift - Pixi ∙ Skincare set - Origins ∙ Travel trio - Pixi ∙ Palm print mug - House of Hackney 
 Lip socks - Oliver Bonas ∙ Floral Agenda - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Minis set - Origins


Leopard print heels - Whistles ∙ Candle set - M&S ∙ Address book - Rifle Paper Co ∙ Stud handbag - M&S ∙ 
Passport cover - Whistles ∙ Lip glace set - Laura Mercier ∙ Eternity Ring - Monica Vinader ∙ Mini lily bag - Mulberry ∙ 
Make-up bag - Anya Hindmarsh ∙ Lash set - Marc Jacobs ∙ Leopard print purse - M&S


Inspirational stickers - Kikki K ∙ Ambient light palette - Hourglass ∙ Necklace stand - Oliver Bonas ∙ Ornament - Jo Malone ∙ 
Watch - Cluse ∙ Mug - Bando ∙ Star hoops - Orelia ∙ Winter glow mini - Liz Earle ∙ Marble clock - Made ∙ 
Mint journal - Kikki K ∙ Pencil pot - Kikki K 


Socks - Topshop ∙ Perfect pouch - Katie Loxton ∙ Robe - Topshop ∙ Blush agenda - Rifle Paper Co 
Cashmere blend socks - Next  Favourites set - Bumble Bumble ∙ Cashmere scarf - Warehouse ∙ Best of Becca - Becca ∙ 
Mug - Kikki K ∙ Pink flamingo personalised note cards - Papier ∙ Thickening hair set - Bumble Bumble ∙ Nail art kit - Dior 


Brush set - Zoeva ∙ Lipstick holder - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ Pretty Honest - Sali Hughes ∙ 
Mini lipstick charms - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ Fragrance set - Viktor & Rolf ∙ Baby pink clutch bag - Whistles ∙ 
Gold photo frame - Paperchase ∙ Darley bag - Mulberry ∙ Ice princess set - Deborah Lippmann  
Galaxy earrings set - Accessorize ∙ Mini set - Bobbi Brown Brush set - Charlotte Tilbury


Rose gold necklace - Accessorize ∙ Studs set - Accessorize ∙ Eyelash curlers - Charlotte Tilbury ∙ Book ends - M&S 
 Paper folder - Studio Sarah ∙ Polish - Dior ∙ Hooded jumper - Oasis ∙ Alphabet candle - M&S ∙ Earring set - Orelia ∙ 
Lipstick set - Stila ∙ Cookie Cutters - Kate Spade ∙ Moon pin - Astley Clarke ∙ Silver purse - Whistles ∙ Confetti tumbler - Oliver Bonas ∙ Gold spotted planner - Kikki K 


Travel wallet - Aspinal of London ∙ High point heels - Topshop ∙ Rose gold earring set - Accessorize ∙ Trinket tray - M&S ∙ 
Card holder - Warehouse  ∙ Let it glitter set - Essie ∙ Cloche - Kikki K ∙ Ice queen set - Deborah Lippmann ∙ 
Pretty Iconic - Sali Hughes ∙ Red tote - Whistles ∙ Lip & Nail Set - Nars ∙ Marble monogram notebook - Studio Sarah ∙ 
Victoria Beckham lipstick - Estee Lauder ∙ Red mini bag - M&S ∙ Cake stand - Kate Spade

Forever being the told I'm the girl that has everything, I'll deffo be popping on my list. And of course, I cannot be the only one that follows the wise old mantra 'one present for such and such... oh, go on then!... one present for me...' - it really is the only way to get one's Christmas shopping complete. 

Tell me, which of these fabulous finds would you like to find under your Christmas tree?
Now that's the second time a Mulberry Lily has featured on my wish list, how enlightening.

27 November 2016

Sunday Style: Out in the wild

Escaped from the zoo.

This is the phrase that undoubtedly sums up my winter wardrobe. I'm quite literally a mash up of animal prints waiting to happen.

My style is girly meets classic. Nothing too daring. Leopard print is a flirt, a dash of wild that I can't resist. Polished up nicely with my trusty wardrobe staples, I can't get enough.


Hat - Gap  Cashmere Scarf - Warehouse  Jumper - Banana Republic ∙ Coat - M&S  Jeans - Zara  Bag - Whistles  Pom pom - Accessorize  Boots - Topshop (last season)

I've got the bag, the belt, the shoes. Enter the leopard print coat that turned out to be the gateway drug to filling my wardrobe with yet more animal print. 

A sleek and stylish, relaxed overcoat - I snapped up this printed perfection from none other than M&S. Soft to the touch, it has that snazzy M&S quality that promises to stand the test of time / when you can bare to shell out for the dry cleaners. Not only does it have pockets (winner!), it doesn't have the tackiness of the poppers showing right in yo' face. Which is a serious pet hate of mine. 

And the handbag. Well. That was a Whistles addition that somehow became a birthday present to myself. Coupled with a 'ball of fluff' as Matthew so aptly calls it, who can resist a soft grey pom pom? Not me sister.

Stay tuned for my Christmas gift guide coming this week!


30 October 2016

Beauty Talk: Sephora Hauling

I went to Sephora and I hauled, hard.

Last month many of you know that I went to the big US of A and I took a road trip along the east coast. It somehow became my mission to visit as many Sephora stores (as you do, obvs) and although I kinda lost count along the way, it was however a mission accomplished.

Although I have a beauty collection that is pretty, er, bigger than yo average - I rarely buy beauty bits throughout the year. I'm quite tame when it comes to new launches and it takes me forever to buy into any hype. So let's just say shit got spendy.

I've been pretty lucky to shop the hell outta Sephora over the past few years, so this year I decided to reign it in. I only bought a) pieces that were deffo cheaper than home b) marvel at the minis c) buy brands that aren't easy to buy in the UK. 

I knew that from the moment my jet-lagged self stepped off the plane, this would be a saviour. I bought a couple mainly for the fun factor and I was pretty impressed for two reasons: one it made my skin super soft and the chilled sheet mask really soothed my skin, two I did not have to slave away washing anything off my skin after. Win win.

Possibly the most underrated product the Sephora own line has to offer. Oh yeah, I went that far. Before you pull that freaked out look at the very thought of shaving your brows - gimme a sec ok? This tiny razor is for touch ups. For that in-between awkward regrowth, where you can't be bothered to wait for your next brow appointment or sit down for a plucking sesh. 

It's completely fool proof, I've never drawn blood or had a freak accident. Quite frankly it's a dream when you have a really fair hairs that you want to remove quickly. Don't knock it till you've tried it, trust me.

My holy grail brow product. I simply needed a replacement and it was a couple of bucks cheaper stateside. Available at Cult Beauty here.

A mini Nars concealer in the aisle of miniature doom? I was sold. And since using it, its become a regular in my every day face.

I totally picked this up on a whim just because... see above.

An invisible hair bobble that looks a bit strange, but leaves your hair kink-less. I totally back the hype people. 

Also available at Feel Unique here.

I have a full blown love affair with drybar. This may be because I can't get it here at home and that makes it all kinds of special - or perhaps because they really are the bees knees and they make your hair smell real good. A firm fan of the Volumizing spray, I needed more bits for my stash. 

Since I lobbed off most my hair (sob), I've ventured into the realms of texturing sprays. Bumble and Bumble dryspun never lets me down, but I was keen to branch out. 

I had already given a mini of the Triple Sec knocking around from last year so I doubled up my stash and I've been pretty impressed. Although dry shampoos make me gag (that feeling in your hair, grim), I've been spraying both the Triple Sec and Mr Incredible to my do' and not focusing on the roots, and it's definitely been helping me achieve the Pinterest look. AKA soft waves, not through a bush backwards. Full review coming soon.

The drybar brush? Better than my tangle teezer, uh huh.

Becca is brand that had long been on my radar and ever since I discovered the cream highlighter Opal, I've been smitten. I picked up this cute little travel set (that's now also available at Cult Beauty) and both the pressed powder highlight and the on the spot cream highlighter really give you that lit from within glow, you know, that dreamy kind that has you shimmering without the dreaded tack sparkle. 

Bobbi Brown Liner Set

By now you've guessed I'm a sucker for a mini, coupled with the fact that the Bobbi Brown gel liners are a staple in my collection, I snapped this beauty up QUICK. It's incredibly tiny (and probably pointless), but it makes me so happy. 

Anastasia Liquid Lipstick in Carina / Paprika Red

My first foray into the non brow territory of Anastasia - and I dig it. Whichever brand of liquid lipstick, my lips are forever as dry as the Sahara dessert and I need gazillion cotton buds to do serious clean up but these bright shades hooked me line and sinker. The hot pink Carina is a shade that makes my whole day brighter, not just my gob. It's an easy way to wear pink without being so daunting. Paprika Red is probably only a shade I can style out when I am super tan, but come summer this bad boy will become a staple. 

Stila Liquid Lipstick in Bellissima

Although I gravitate to bright lips, I cannot deny a beautiful nude. Bellissimia is everything I would look for in a gloss or creamy lipstick - a liquid lipstick - not so much. With a light layer, I can make it work with a balm on top, even now I want to slather it on and hope it's not matte. I just can't get my head around the gross Kylie Jenner matte lips thing that's trending right now. Ick. 

Technically I snapped up this little gem from Ulta  - but right now it's also available on Cult Beauty, go go go!

One of my favourite buys stateside, this swish little kit has a full size Priming Potion (I can't even..), Shimmering Skin Perfector (a cult buy, seriously), Eye Brightening Corrector (highly underrated) and a mini blush in Snap Dragon, which is an all around crowd pleaser. Do I need to say any more? 

There we have it. This is only a snippet of my American hauling as my travel debit card got pretty spendy in Mac and Duty Free, watch this space!

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