Things I Didn’t Buy In Sephora

This post is a little belated, given that my Florida trip was back in November, and I almost wasn’t going to write it, but that was until I saw the lovely Roxie’s anti-haul post based on a similar concept, so I decided to bite the bullet and publish it.

Every time I go to America I think about the Sephora trip, whether its because I’ve already planned a million things I want to buy, or I’m dreading the credit card bill that will inevitably come following the trip, and the last trip was no different. On this trip, I hadn’t really thought too much about products I wanted to buy, but that’s because its Sephora – there will always be things that I want.

That said, however, there were quite a few products that I rushed towards, but that didn’t end up in my basket in the end for various reasons, and here’s a few of those..

Too Faced Peaches and Cream collection

When Too Faced announced that they were releasing a full range of products following on from the Sweet Peach eye palette, glow kit (which I own) and a handful of blushes and lip glosses that they had before, my heart skipped a beat. I adore the glow palette, I’m a sucker for anything peach scented and Too Faced packaging is always the cutest, so that was the first stop when I entered the store. That said, however, I was a little disappointed. The packaging of some of the items felt a bit cheap, and I didn’t anything smelt as good as the original products, so for what they would have cost me, I just felt like my money could have been spent better elsewhere..

Anastasia Beverly Hills Sugar Glow Kit

This was the first ABH glow kit that I actually wanted, but as it had been out of stock when I was there in February, I opted for the Nicole Guerriero kit instead, which I was actually really happy about at the time because I love that palette. But this was in stock again, so I picked it up, looked at it, tilted my head and put it back. The fact was, the shades were just very similar to the ones in the kit I already had. Sure, none were exactly the same and I loved them all, but I just figured that I already had a pretty great set that still has plenty of use left in it, so I decided to stick with it.

Fenty Beauty

Firstly I was a little taken aback by how tucked away in the store the Fenty collection was, but nonetheless I did have a quick glance. The problem for me, however, was that the range had only been out for about 2 months, and I hadn’t seen that many reviews on the products to know where to even start. Its probably something that I’ll go back to, but it just wasn’t on the cards this time.

The minis

I normally love choosing from the huge range of minis in Sephora, but the fact is I was already quite stocked up from two previous trips that year! I ummed and ahhed over one or two things, but eventually left with no tiny products at all.

I guess that by being good on this trip, it means I can be a little naughtier next time though, right?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

Getting Monday Ready

Call me crazy, but I’ve always kinda liked Mondays. I see them like a fresh start, a mini New Years every week, and this liking of Mondays has only increased since starting my new job because I don’t also dread them a little bit anymore.

I also like to think that by starting off the week right, it will mean that the whole seven days will go off without a hitch, and with that in mind there are a few things that I like to get sorted every Sunday in the hopes of a smooth coming week.

Cleaning my makeup brushes

I find cleaning my brushes really therapeutic for some reason. I don’t quite do this every week as there are some weeks I just don’t wear my makeup as much as others, but its always a Sunday evening task regardless! All my brushes are Spectrum, and I use the Freedom Cosmetics brush bath to clean them, and then let them air dry on a shelf above my radiator overnight so that they’re nice and fluffy in the morning and ready for action!

A good skincare session

Over the winter months especially, I have been making much more of an effort to be more on top of my skincare regime as the weather can drive my skin crazy, so I do have a daily routine, but Sunday’s are for a bit of extra love. Sometimes that’s a face mask, sometimes a long hot bath, and sometimes its just a longer session with my Magnitone and a few extra or more special products thrown in.

The food shop and meal planning

Sundays are normally the day that Matthew and I do our Sainsbury’s shop and decide what dinners we’re going to have in the week. We keep our weekly shop below £50 as we each get vouchers through a salary scheme at work, and we like quick and easy meals that we can throw together after we both finish work, so typically we have things like chilli, soup, curry etc, but also like to mix things up with whatever else takes our fancy. There’s also a little bit of meal prepping done on a Sunday night, but now I’m back working 9-5 I don’t have to stress about it too much.

Packing up orders

Any Etsy or Happiest Fitness Co orders that I’ve sorted out over the weekend end up in a little pile of boxes and packages by the door by Sunday night ready for me to take to the post office during my lunch break on Monday – no rest for the small business-er!

Tweet scheduling

Every Sunday night I try to get my whole week’s worth of scheduled tweets sorted so that I don’t have to think about them for the rest of the week. Its a slightly boring task but I know that if I get it out of the way, at least its done!

Ironing and outfit planning

I don’t completely plan out my outfits for work, but I try to think ahead so that I have the key items ready, washed and ironed so that I don’t have to worry about getting the ironing board out in the week.

Do you do anything specific to get ready for your week?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

About My Younger Self

This was me, aged 15. This photo was taken about two or three days after I had been dumped by my first long-term boyfriend – we’d been together around 8 or 9 months – by text, at around 2 o’clock in the morning. Yeah.. My two best girlfriends had slept round mine, and we had gone to a local summer festival where we tried to get as many free things as we could, ate food that came from trucks or stalls and just had some fun.

In those days I always carried a camera. More often than not it was my dad’s because he had much better ones than me, and phone cameras still took grainy, low quality photos. My phone at the time was a slid-up LG thing with buttons. Yep. I would take so many photos, most totally silly but every one a memory that I would painstakingly upload to Facebook in groups of 5, caption individually and tag, so that everyone could see. I still have every single one saved on my computer.

My two best friends were everything. Our lives revolved around sleepovers at each others houses and trips to Primark. We sat together in every class but still text each other under our desks, and we were there for each other through every breakup, fall out or family problem. We all had our own style and our own likes and dislikes, but we all respected each other. I never thought there would be a time that we wouldn’t be friends anymore. Well, we drifted apart in the end.

In those days I knew very little when it came to makeup, and I certainly didn’t wear it every day. When I did it was probably just blue eyeliner and mascara – I think by 15 I had given up on my Dream Matte Mousse in 3 shades more orange than my face actually was. My eyebrows were never filled in, nor did I ever pluck them (but that was partly because I’m quite lucky with my natural shape), but my nails were always painted. My nail varnish collection was my pride and joy and every week at school was a challenge to see how long I could make it before a teacher eventually noticed my navy blue tipped fingers and made me go to the office to take it off. Most gave up bothering.

Even back then my style was different. I wore skirts and shorts with knee high socks and high-tops – Converses were basically the only shoes I owned, and still are. I wore dungarees and band t-shirts, and actually knew who the bands were. I knew what I was wearing wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea but I almost thrived from it. I guess the fact that I didn’t try and blend in back then is what makes my style what it is today. To be honest, when I look back I still love every outfit.

Younger me went through a lot. I look back at some of it and wish some things had been different. I wish I could have told myself so many things about how life would be in 5-10 years time but I also applaud that version of myself for getting through it all. I almost feel like I don’t know that person anymore, but she was great, despite not believing it herself.

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

Let’s Talk About Luck

Luck (noun)

“success or failure apparently brought about by chance rather than through one’s own actions”

I feel like this says it all, but because you don’t know the point I’m trying to get across, here’s some backstory..

It doesn’t matter who you are or what you achieve, there will always be someone who says ‘oh wow, you’re so lucky!’. Whether you’ve just tweeted about a promotion at work, or you’re Instagramming beach pics from a fabulous holiday, so many people jump to luck. Now don’t get me wrong, 9 times out of 10 this is probably meant as a compliment, but that’s just the thing. Unintentional as it may be, claiming luck invalidates the accomplishment.

Take bloggers for example. I follow so many incredible bloggers on Twitter, all of which produce great content, take photos that could easily appear in magazines and pour so much effort into their posts that they deserve every opportunity they get, but whenever they tweet in gratitude about one of their favourite brands reaching out to work with them, so many of the responses that come flooding in are ‘oh my gosh, this is amazing! You’re so lucky!’. Yes, it is amazing, but look at the definition of luck (see, I put it there for a reason), these things came about through hard work and determination, so that’s far from luck.

Personally, I hate being told that I’m lucky whenever I go on holiday. Sure, I guess I’m fortunate to have a job that pays well, but I earnt that job and I work hard in that job, plus I put in so much overtime for the very purpose of being able to pay for said holidays. And I suppose it helps that my outgoings aren’t too high, but again, that’s because I’m very careful with money, budget like a pro and know how to find a bargain. Yep, these are all sounding like my own actions..

I’m not saying that I’m not grateful for every opportunity that comes my way, because I am. I am so grateful and so thankful for everything I have, and there are so many things that I do think I’m lucky to have, such as my amazing family, incredible boyfriend and wonderful friends, because apart from somehow convincing them to be in my life, my actions had nothing to do with them being who they are, I just wish that we didn’t devalue accomplishments by suggesting luck has anything to do with it.

What do you think?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

My January Sale Buys

January sales are a weird concept. We’ve just spent all our money showering our friends and relatives with gifts, and have been showered in return, yet the second we see a sale poster in a shop window, or a promotional email slides into our inbox, we suddenly forget our credit card bills and piles or presents and shop til we drop. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a bargain.

As you can see, the majority of my steals were homeware – including the gorgeous throw blanket that I’ve doubled as a backdrop here! Its the prettiest creamy-blush colour, not to mention being crazy supersoft, and d’you know where I got it from? Homesense, £16.99, boom. I’m also completely obsessed with this yellow neon ‘hello’ sign by Talking Tables which I got on ASOS. I had my eye on it before it went on sale, but as soon as I saw it was less than half price, it was in the bag!

Also from ASOS, I picked up two of these amazing pastel furry throw cushions for only £8.50 each, and also this Skinnydip ‘Time to Get Ship-Faced’ bag for future Disney cruises, which was also half price. This little plant pot is one of two which I got from Homesense for just £2 too!

Lastly, Matthew and I picked up some tealights and diffuser oil in Passionflower and Mango, which smells amazing! Both were half price and under £2 from Sainsbury’s of all places.

Have you managed to resist the sales?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

What I Got For Christmas

I’m kinda not over the fact that its already been a week since Christmas, but hey, that means just another 51 weeks til the next one! No? Just me..

Anyway, I know I’m a little late in posting the classic ‘what I got for Christmas’ haul, but as I was having my little Christmas break from blogging, I’m just extending the festive period so that I can share with you all the wonderful gifts I received on the big day.

Let’s start with the present that was too big to fit under the tree – say hello to my new suitcase! Bit of back story here, my current suitcase is about 15 years old and has two wheels, and all these new-fangled suitcase have four, which I’m not a huge fan of but apparently its the thing now. Well Matthew figured that the only way to get my over my dislike of four wheels was to make it Donald themed! Super excited to take this bad-boy to Hawaii in April to test it out!

Matthew also got me the Fitbit Flyer headphones, which I’m already super impressed by but I can’t wait to put them to good use when I start my marathon training, and a book on how to get the best out of my iPad Pro, plus a cute kitty mug, unicorn slippers and a onesie! I hate the phrase ‘boy did good’ but it seems fitting here..

Now I have no idea how she managed it for a second time, but after the incredible surprise of a CoachxDisney wristlet on my birthday, my mum shocked me with another item from the collection, this time a purse. I’m quite jealous as I had no luck finding any of the collection in the outlets, yet she’s done it twice – she also nabbed me this Mickey sweater!

How gorgeous is this Fiorelli gym bag? I actually picked this one out myself but I still had to wait until Christmas to get it.. I suspect my gym will be packed this month with New Years resolution-ers, but I’ll be ready to fight for all the good machines now I’ve got a bag to fit all my kit in.

Other goodies in my stocking included Eat Like a Gilmore: The Unofficial Cookbook for Fans of Gilmore Girls, a little collection of Lush products, a couple of gift cards and a pretty Beauty and the Beast bracelet from Couture Kingdom from Matthew’s mum, so it’s safe to say I’ve been incredibly lucky this year!

I hope everyone else was spoilt rotten, and if you want to share what you got for Christmas please leave me a comment so I can be nosey!

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

Why I’m Disappearing for Christmas

I don’t imagine this is much of a surprise given that over the last week or so I haven’t been keeping up with my usual posting schedule, but I’m putting myself on a little Christmas break and there will be no new posts until the new year!

As I mentioned last week, I’ve started a new job and I’ve been concentrating on getting settled into a new role and new routine, as well as getting ready for the big day next week, so blogging has just had to take a back burner. This is a huge step for me, because as someone who religiously publishes at least 5 posts a week, I do feel a little like I’m letting my little blog down, but I’m proud of the fact that I’m not letting myself feel guilty for putting myself first.

I need a break, and this year is the first time that I have let myself really take one. If I’m not at work, I’m writing, or working on my small businesses, and I even blog daily when I’m on holiday. This Christmas, I think I’ve earned myself a little time off. I only have a few days off work over the festive period, and I want to spend that time enjoying myself, spending time with my family and just relaxing for a change.

I’m also concentrating on making sure come January I’m gonna be ready with great new content right from the get go, and using a new job and a new year as a fresh slate – and there’s going to be lots to come!

In the meantime, I wish you all the most merry of Christmasses, and if I’m not back by then, a lovely New Year!

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram