Car Insurance Renewal Myths Busted

I think we can all agree that there is nothing exciting or interesting about car insurance, right? Its a legal requirement, and considered by most to be a hassle or a chore, and what’s worse is that a number of people feel like they have no idea what they’re doing when it comes to it, which can really cause problems further down the line.

So while this might not be the most exciting topic to be blogging about, I thought I’d share some advice and information from my experience of working in the car insurance industry. I’m not sharing any industry secrets or naming/shaming any particular companies, I’m just hoping to clear up some of the myths or beliefs, and hopefully help a few people out! Here goes..

I’ve had another claim free year, why has my insurance gone up?

Its a common belief that every year you go without making a claim earns you a drop in your renewal price, and while this may often be the case, there are a number of factors that could mean you see an increase. This year especially, there have been a number of changes in industry factors that have been totally out of the companies control, namely the increase in Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) and changes in legislation on personal injury compensation, both of which have hit car insurance hard.

On top of this, insurance rates are calculated based on a whole tonne of information and statistics, so while you might have another year of driving with no accidents, things like your car being another year older, or if there’s been an increase in the number of accidents or claims in your postal region, are all things that are factored in during the underwriting process.

What about my no claims discount?

No claims discount (NCD) can of course reduce the cost of your insurance substantially, and within your first few years of earning NCD, you should be seeing a general reduction in your insurance quotes, but the further up the years you get, the discount percentage increases by smaller increments, until you eventually hit your insurance companies maximum, which in most cases is 9+ years. At this point, while you may feel like your insurance should be dropping every year – which is may do! – you’re already benefiting from the highest discount you can get, so you may find a bit of a plateau.

My insurance company will give me a discount if I tell them I’m going to cancel

Sure, a lot of insurance companies will be able to offer you a discount if you express unhappiness at your renewal price, but I urge you to think about the amount of discount they give. If they can knock £100 off the price the moment you question the price, why is it they can do that without second thought? You may find you’re only offered £10-15 off, and while this may seem a little stingy, what it actually suggests is that you were sent out a pretty accurate price in the first place, rather than an over-inflated price designed to make you feel like a winner when they half the cost.

I shouldn’t have to shop around to get the best price

One of the biggest reasons that people see their insurance prices go up and up and up is because they allow their insurance company to renew the policy time and time again without comparing the market. Most insurance companies do have a preferred customer, be that based on age or any other factors, and while you may think that you’re being a lovely loyal customer staying year after year, it is possible that you can get a much better deal elsewhere. This has actually become such an epidemic that the insurance regulator has mandated that insurance companies must now put a statement on their renewal quotes encouraging their customers to shop around, so don’t be insulted if you notice this!

On the back of this, insurance companies can vary massively in how they assess your details, so one company can quote you £300 while another quotes you £600 for exactly the same cover!

Do I really need to review my insurance every year?

YES. I urge you to check through all of your documents every year, as well as being sure to update your insurance company to any changes throughout the year. Even small changes, such as a different job, becoming a homeowner, going from living at home to living with a partner or getting married; these are all factored into the calculation of your insurance premium, and its so easy to forget about informing your insurance of these changes, but they can make a difference!

What should I do if I’m uncertain about anything on my policy?

If you ever have any questions about your car insurance, the first thing you should do is speak to YOUR insurance company. While friends and family may be keen to give you advice, if they’re insured with a different company, there could be a big difference in what their insurance covers to what yours does, so bear this in mind when seeking a second opinion.

I’m sorry to bombard you with quite a lot of information, but I really hope that I’ve been able to help a few people out with this post! If you have found this helpful, please let me know as I’d love to know if you’d be interested in seeing more posts like this!

This post is primarily based on facts, but any of opinions stated in this post are my own personal views and do not reflect the views or opinions of any insurance companies.
Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

What Wonder Woman Wears

First up, I just want to prefix this post with a little disclaimer: I am a strictly Marvel > DC kinda gal, so I apologise up front if I say anything that isn’t accurate to the greater DC world, but Wonder Woman is the first DC movie I’ve watched in probably about 5 years or so! Also, there’s no spoilers here!

So I went to see Wonder Woman at the weekend; despite being a Marvel fan through and through, I actually thought the trailer looked pretty good, and while I’d rather chew off my leg than watch anything Batman or Superman related, I was pretty open to some kick ass girl power.

Seeing it over a week after its release date, of course I saw an initial response throughout social media, and to be honest, a lot of these tweets and posts were of very little interest to me as they discussed the plot and rated (or slated!) the film overall. What did keep catching my eye, however, were the people discussing the outfit that teenage boys reading comic books have dreamt about since 1942.

‘How anti-feminist’, ‘Why is she fighting in such a skimpy outfit’, ‘This is a step back for strong female characters’. SHUT. UP.

I’m gonna spell something out for all the people missing the point on feminism: women can wear whatever the hell they like. Does it matter what she’s wearing, if she’s inspiring a whole new generation of girls to become superheros?

I, in fact, loved that the Amazons wore what they wore. It displayed their fierceness, it showed how their bodies were strong and toned, not just skinny, and these are ideals that are so much more important for both children and women.

Would it make any difference if she was in a turtleneck and mom jeans? You’d probably find people complaining that she was too covered up and wasn’t allowed to express herself.

She saved lives. She stood up for herself. She made a difference. She had a heart and a conscience and a brain. Her outfit makes absolutely no difference in her achieving any of these results.

On another level, let’s talk about how this is the first major superhero movie to be directed by a woman. Patty Jenkins smashed it. Also, can we talk about how Gal Gadot was PREGNANT during part of the filming for this movie? I mean, if that isn’t totally incredible then what is?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

A Week In Work Outfits

After over 4 years of working in a uniform, when I started my current job back in November I was faced for the first time by the prospect of daily outfit decisions, which was pretty exciting for me.

Well 6 months down the line, I’ve definitely got into the swing of office apparel, and because we keep it fairly casual at work, I’ve really loved putting together outfits that are smart-casual and cute, and really reflect my personal style, so this week I thought I’d share my looks from every day this week!

Monday

This skirt is an all-time favourite of mine. Its a few years old now, originally from Missguided, but I just adore the little cloud print. I teamed it with this multi-layer Daisy Street bodysuit and my favourite light cardigan, along with some lace up heels.

Tuesday 

Your girl took the plunge and wore her Mickey shirt to work!! This blouse from H&M got me so excited but I was a little nervous to wear it in the office, but I’m so happy that I did because I love it! With the shirt being the main event, I just paired it with dark blue jeans and the comfiest plain black flats (psst! £4 from Primark!)

Wednesday


I really love these trousers – would you believe their from F&F at Tesco? They’re so comfy and the print isn’t too in your face, plus you NEVER have to iron them and they always look perfect! I’m also loving this blouse which I bought recently from the H&M sale, its really light which makes it perfect for the upcoming summer weather and the colour means it goes with everything.

Thursday



This outfit made me so happy! I love that my office dress code allows smart shorts – not that most people even realise that my Black Milk galaxy shorties are actually shorts! I also wear my ‘unicorns are real’ t-shirt to work more often than I care to admit, but when you’re also wearing a blazer it still counts as smart, right? The blazer is AX Paris!

Friday


 Can you tell I was posing in the rain on Friday? I got fed up of grey skies so figured my car would make a brighter backdrop! I’m not usually one for frilly or fancy sleeves, but I really love this blouse from Blue Vanilla, even if I do look a little bit like an Abba reject.. I also love any excuse to wear my chelsea boots to gain a bit of extra height!

So that’s a week in the life of my wardrobe! Depending on my mood I can go a lot more casual than I have done this week, and if I do work weekends then that’s always super casual!

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

My Blogging Time Saving Hacks

I take a lot of pride in maintaining my blogging routine of at least 5 new blog posts a week, alongside working full-time and running a few small businesses.

Time is always of the essence for me, and over 6 months I’ve discovered a whole bunch of ways to ensure that I’m not wasting those precious minutes, and here are a few of my favourites:

Pre-writing scheduled tweets

Scheduling tweets is blog promo 101, but I used to find it such a chore sitting and choosing which posts to schedule, then writing them out and auto-pilot-typing those same set of hashtags and RT accounts over and over. No more! Every time I publish a new post, I write a promo tweet for it, and then I copy and paste this into one huge document of all of my posts, complete with tags and all. I have these categorised into different topics, so I just have to rotate between lifestyle, beauty, food, travel, Disney etc, and copy and paste a post from each category for each day.

The Buffer extension on iOS

I also used to think I could only schedule tweets from my laptop so that I could link posts, but I’ve since discovered that if you add the Buffer extension to Safari, I can schedule post tweets straight from my phone!

Instagram drafts

Although I’m finding them super glitchy at the moment, the drafts feature on Instagram is my favourite update since stories. I spend my work breaks editing all my photos and writing captions, then whenever I need to post I just have to pull it back up and hit publish!

Bulk writing series posts

When I have a new series planned, like my Glass Slipper Camp workout posts or pre-Disney trip outfit posts, I’ll try and sit and write them all in one go and get them scheduled and out of the way. I can only really do this when I know exactly what I’ll be writing/posting, but it works for some series!

Giving yourself a break

Ultimately, the best time saving hack is remembering that if life gets in the way and I don’t have enough time to get a couple of posts out, its okay. Rather than stressing out about stats or a dip in views, you just have to let it go and accept that life comes first, and that its alright to miss a day or even a week if you need to. Letting go is a blessing.

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

8 Reasons Cher Horowitz Is a Great Role Model

Clueless might be over 20 year old now, but we all know that as a chick flick, its as timeless as Paul Rudd himself. And while to the untrained eye, Cher might come across as a stereotypical 90s spoiled blonde, when you read between the lines, I think we can all stand to remember some of the important messages she portrays.

She wears whatever she wants

Who can honestly say they wouldn’t love her a catalogued computer system that puts together outfits for you? Not to mention she owns whatever she wears and that kind of confidence is something everyone should have.

She actually knew what she was talking about

While her school debates weren’t always the most eloquent, if you actually listen to some of the topics that she speaks about, she’s not chatting rubbish.

She always had the best intentions

Making over Tai may have had ups and downs for everyone involved, but ultimately she did it to help a new girl fit in and gained a true friend from it.

She had boy standards

She knew she wasn’t interested in any of the boys at her school, and she was totally ok with that, rather than chasing random guys for no reason.

And she wasn’t afraid to say no

Telling Elton to get stuffed and getting out of the car after he tried to force himself on her is a hugely important thing to portray for young girls to learn from.

She did mind that Christian was gay

Even when she did fall for a boy, only to discover that they were both interested in guys, she wasn’t at all phased and stayed really good friends with him, rather than getting mad.

She always looked after her dad

After losing her mum at a young age, Cher took it upon herself to make sure that her dad was eating right, supported him with work and cared for him endlessly.

She just wanted people to be happy

Setting up her teachers, welcoming Tai, championing a school charity project.. You can call her a bit ditsy or think her self-centred at times, but Cher ultimately was just a nice person who wanted to make a difference.

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

Get Sparkly For Summer

Who else is mega excited that the sun has finally started making an appearance?!

Sun means summer, and summer means beach days, festivals and pretty much every day is an excuse to be your best and sparkliest self – so get sparkly!

As a self-confessed highlighter addict, I make my love of all things sparkly pretty obvious, and here are a bunch of products that are perfect to get you shining away this summer:

Unicorn Heart highlighter from I Heart Makeup

I don’t reach for this highlighter nearly as much as I should do, but its multicoloured shine is perfect for music festivals and carnivals.

Barry M Dazzle Dust

I’ve loved Dazzle Dust since I was a teenager; its super pigmented and lasts really well, plus it feels so light! I have quite a few brighter shades, but at the moment I’m loving Aphrodite, which is a shell-pinky/nude which works amazing as a loose powder eyeshadow, but also when lightly dusted on your cheekbones as an extra shiny highlight.

Dandelion Twinkle from Benefit

I’m really a sucker for everything from Benefit’s Dandelion range, but I couldn’t help but pick up this new highlighter when I was last in Sephora and its so pretty!

Shimmy Shimmy Shimmer Bar from Lush

This just sorta fell into my basket when I was last in Lush.. Its a cocoa butter based bar which has the most beautiful vanilla scent, and is packed with environmentally friendly glitter! Its essentially a moisturiser which leaves you super sparkly, but you can also use it as a solid perfume and a highlighter. Rub it all over your arms and legs to sparkle away on a night out!

Illuminating Strobe Cream in Frosty Pink from Barry M

Not only is this a fab product for under £5, but this is also a highstreet dupe of Clinique’s Chubby Stick highligter which is £19.50!

Anastasia Beverly Hills x Nicole Guerriero Glow Kit

Remember when I bought this back in February and fell in love with it? Well I’m still in love with it and its going to be my best friend through the summer. Full review and swatches here!

What are your favourite summer beauty products?

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram

Are Lush Hair Products Worth The Money?

Something that I’m making a big effort to do in life is to choose more cruelty-free products, and towards the end of last year I switched the majority of my hair care to Lush products.

I made this change for a number of reasons. Firstly, my hair needed a major shake-up; I had to wash my hair everyday to avoid dealing with major grease issues, and secondly, I found that I was going through so much shampoo and conditioner, and probably over-using them, adding to the grease issue.

Switching to Lush products wasn’t exactly difficult, I mean, y’all know I’m a major Lushie, and I’ve used some of the products before, plus I was pretty excited to make this change to cruelty free and also cut down on the amount of chemicals going into my hair.

Now we all know that Lush products can cost a pretty penny. This has never really bothered me as I’ve always seen Lush products as a treat, and let’s face it, you can’t expect to pay Primark prices for handmade, cruelty-free high quality items, but I must admit that the thought of forking out for these on a regular basis had me a little concerned.

But here’s the thing: I’ve hardly bought any.

The switch has really been a win win scenario for me. Not only are the products so much better for my hair that I’m not having to wash it nearly as often, but I’m also being more careful about the amount of product that I’m using – partially due to be cautious of cost!

So what am I using and what am I spending?

Shampoo bars – I’ve switched from liquid to solid shampoo. Lush’s shampoo bars range from £6-8, and I tend to alternate between Seanik, a seaweed and seasalt based bar, which is available in all Lush stores, and Jumping Juniper, which is my all time favourite, although its now an Oxford Street and online exclusive. Now although I say alternate, I switched to shampoo bars back in October, and I’m only just starting my third one about now; generally I find the bars last at least 2-3 months washing every 2-3 days. Total spent since January? £12.50

Psst! Shampoo bars have no packaging, so make for a much happier environment!

Conditioner – I must admit that I was onto a winner with my first trial of American Cream, and I haven’t tried any others since – I mean if it ain’t broke? It smells so beautiful and I end up sniffing my hair all day. Conditioner being the product that I’m most guilty of over-using, I’ve really reined myself in and am using a fraction of the amount as I have done with regular branded conditioners. Total spent since January? £17.95

Rub Rub Rub – one of my favourite little Lush hacks is using my favourite shower scrub to clean my hair every now and then. Every 2-3 weeks, I’ll do a wash with a handful of this seasalt body scrub, and the results are fantastic. I’ve bought a few tubs of this, but I use more of it on the rest of my body than I do my hair!

So when your typical bottle of shampoo or conditioner costs £2-5 (and we all know that the conditioner runs out much quicker than the shampoo!), and lasts a month or two depending on how much you use it, I don’t actually think there’s that much of a difference in the amount of money I’d be spending on the market leading brands, and I’ve really noticed a difference!

I used to have to wash my hair daily, or risk a greasy second day, and now I can quite happily go 2-3 days between washes, and my hair just generally feels so much lighter and cleaner! Let’s just say, I’m not gonna be changing back!

Twitter / Bloglovin / Instagram