Friday, 21 July 2017

New in the wardrobe lately, summer

Usually i hate summer dressing, (I still do a tiny bit, the resentment for the temperature is still there) but this summer i decided to try and be different than i have been in past years. I decided just "not wearing a jacket" wasn't what most people would call summer dressing, and have made an attempt at moving away from my jeans and a t-shirt summer style. Here are the pieces that are new in my wardrobe for summer..

Fashion style blog posts london summer outfit inspiration ideas new look asos petite

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Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Real Techniques miracle complexion sponge VS Ecotools perfecting blender duo

The makeup sponge has taken over from the foundation brush, and it's here to stay. Gone are the days when the sacred beauty blender cornered the market, Real Techniques changed the game with their affordable alternative, and now everyone is having a go at making their own. Today we're putting the two new sponges on the block against everyones orange favourite, could the RT sponge lose it's thrown? 

Ecotools perfecting blender duo review vs real tecniques miracle complexion sponge

I'm going to talk through the "on paper" specifications first (cheeky love island reference), just to get an overview of the two, and then we can get onto my actual thoughts ..
The Ecotools perfecting blender duo is actually two separate sponges, one for light base application and the smaller sponge for more precise application and higher coverage. The pack at Boots will cost you £9.99, that's the same price as a pack of two RT sponges, but does work out slightly more expensive than the RT, when you consider the smaller size of one of the ecotools sponges. Having two different sizes is the point of the kit however, so the price is virtually the same for the two. It really depends on whether you'd rather have a variation, or if you like to stock up on lots of the same size sponges to decide on what works out better value for money for you personally. 

The Ecotools sponges pack in a lot of different angles to work with on one sponge, you've got a pointy slanted end, the curved round edge and two different length flat sides. Compared to the RT sponge, which has an overall curved shape, a pointed but still rounded tip for getting in corners and one flat side. 

Both sponges say they can be used wet or dry but i think we all know they're best used wet. I feel like they just write that on there for slightly older people who are set in their ways of using dry sponges..anyone else?? So i tested them both wet and with the exact same products, just like i would with my RT sponge, to avoid any other factors that might effect the performance of the sponges. 

Ecotools perfecting blender duo review vs real tecniques miracle complexion sponge

I kicked off the testing session (aka me doing my makeup with a different sponge, which doesn't sound as exciting) using the larger blender which is designed for products like foundation which cover a large area. 
I wet the sponge throughly and began my usual tapping away at my face, but i stopped after i had covered one cheek. This was just too hard, even though the sponge did get much larger and more squishy for want of a better word, after running it under the tap it just didn't cut the mustard for me. Compared to the real techniques sponge which becomes light and fluffy like an orange dream cloud, this remained too dense for blending even after being soaked with water.  Foundation isn't something i mess around with, so after trying out the bigger blender i gave up and switched back to my Real Techniques sponge for the rest of my foundation application. 

I didn't give up there though, when it came to concealer time i picked up the smaller blender which enticed me in with it's small shape and pointy corners - perfect for under eyes. However once again it was just too dense, the smaller sponge is meant to be slightly harder but it's just not bouncy enough for my liking. 

Will i be switching? 

So as you can probably tell already i won't be making the switch anytime soon, however there is a but: If you're someone who wants to use a makeup sponge but is waste conscious these will be the sponges for you, they're made of 70% plant based materials and are a much more eco friendly option. These are better than a lot (and i've tried a lot) of other makeup sponges on the market, they will blend your makeup but they do require a little bit of extra effort, so they aren't a write off by any means and come with some great ethical principles too. 

Likewise if you're someone who prefers a firmer blender then these would be perfect, especially because you can make use of the great shapes these sponges have.

Ecotools perfecting blender duo review vs real tecniques miracle complexion sponge

Have you tried either sponges? - Maria x

Disclaimer: This post contains items gifted to me with no expectation of a feature or review. 
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Monday, 17 July 2017

The swimwear edit

Is this the start of the holiday posts? Am i over excited? Yes. 
If you follow me on twitter you may have seen me getting over excited about bikinis recently, i'm going on holiday to Nerja in August and i've been shopping for said holiday for the last two months. To stop myself buying any more bikinis, (i've bought 4 new ones already) i'm trying to trick myself into thinking I'm online shopping by creating a swimwear edit for the good of you guys, that's what I'm telling myself anyway.

Summer swimwear edit bikinis 2017 for different sizes

Here are my swimwear picks for the season; aka things i want but cannot buy, because I'm going on 2 holidays not 12 and one of them is to Ireland. I should probably do a raincoat edit for that one.. 
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Thursday, 13 July 2017

Adding coconut into my body care routine

I've always said if i could cover my self entirely in something coconut scented, i most likely would do it. You could say my coconut dreams came true then, when i received some new bits from Palmer's a few weeks ago. Body care actually becomes something that i start to pay more attention to in the warmer months, so these came just at the right time when i start to get the milk bottles out a bit more. 
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Monday, 10 July 2017

If i lived life according to Vogue

I've had a vogue subscription since 2011, October 2011 to be precise. Ever since i sat in my cousins country home reading the September issue, feet up on the coffee table staring out of the big panoramic windows, overlooking the hills. I thought the feeling i had then, was the feeling you got if you read vogue. Suddenly if i read Vogue i would be someone with a weekend country home and a city wardrobe, someone who can wear sunglasses without getting foundation marks, and who goes everywhere in a black cab. Obviously i was wrong, and also 13 years old. When we got back to London the first thing i did was buy the October issue, i had pretty much decided i had a new lifestyle and signed up for a subscription. 

That was 6 years ago and i still have my subscription, except now when it thumps down on the matt at the beginning of the month, i don't run to rip it open like i used to, sometimes i don't even open it for a few days. As i've grown, i've realised a Vogue lifestyle is not a lifestyle anyone leads really. You could argue that the people who edit Vogue know that it's not a lifestyle, that it's an experience or something people read when they desire to have a life like the ones featured in Vogue, but it doesn't stop me questioning practically every bit of "knowledge" or advice i read monthly.

So i decided to go through the pages of July Vogue, to see what i would be eating, wearing and how i would be living my life, if i lived it according to Vogue. 

If i lived life according to vogue lifestyle

Wearing:

On the face of things Vogue is a fashion magazine, so it's only right we start here..and when i stay start i mean flick through 27 pages of ads before you even get to contents page. Yes they're beautiful ads, thousands would've been spent on each and every one, but do i want to go through 27 pages worth? I don't think anyone does. 

According to page 53 of July vogue my ankles will be dressed in July, no more naked ankles. Think ballet style wrap around ties up the leg, or apparently some sort of buckle. This advice leads me to believe people who put on their own shoes won't be able to adopt this trend, when you're on the way to the shop to pick up your ankle wrapped silk flats, you might as well pick up a lady's maid too. You may also fail to fit into this trend if you have human ankles, because according to vogue they suit the "sparrow-sized" best. 

Now my feet are covered (well ankles..) what would my body be covered in this month? According to page 58, if i'm going on an evening out "jeans and a nice top" is acceptable again. But wait.. did jeans and a top go out of fashion?? Was i wrong in thinking the "jeans and a nice top" combo was the international uniform of girl? Apparently so, but i'm glad they're in again now phew, thanks Vogue. 

Vogue spy page 75 tells me that jumbo trousers are raising their head. That's all well and good for the people photographed, head down walking into a fashion filled extravaganza, but to me jumbo trousers fill my head with one thing.. puddles

Shopping:

So now i've ripped through July Vogue as soon as it came through the door, and i know what i need to add to my cart to keep up with the trends, where would i go to find these of the minute pieces? Luckily page 57 gives me an insight into Vogue's address book, a list of shops and websites to keep on record to pull together a capsule wardrobe. Jokes aside, i have always wanted a "capsule wardrobe" so i head to the site labelled as "thrifty e-shop", only to find the first non sale item on the site is an £85 ribbed sweater ... thrifty ..

If something is described as cult obviously i had to investigate, so i made my way over to Golden Goose on Matchesfashion.com. In July i would be (or probably should already be) wearing pre-scuffed trainers. Pre-scuffed. You heard me, and they'll set you back £290. In July i just might start a business selling my old £40 trainers for £290, genius. 

Eating:

Now that i've got my outfit in check and i've established the kings road shopping locations that'll become my stomping ground, i've got to eat right? Luckily, pages 62 and 63 are Vogue's view on where to eat and drink this summer. 

Thought plants were for the garden? Oh no. July's Vogue has decided they go in cocktails, botanical cocktails. Am i the only one who didn't know cocktail trends were a thing? In July i should take a trip to Notting Hill's "Farmacy" which i knew was fancy, but i didn't think was quite Vogue worthy, maybe it's cooler than i thought. But then again something that is "in" one month might be social suicide the next, i'm safe for July anyway. 

In July i would also be anticipating the opening on Dean & Deluca, Vogue didn't actually write what Dean & Deluca is, because that would be too obvious. Obviously. But i take it that it's some sort of supermarket, a fancy supermarket of course, otherwise they would be telling me to anticipate the opening of my local Tesco.

If i lived life according to vogue lifestyle

I feel like i need to do a little bit of a disclaimer, incase anyone actually thinks i'm spending my July drinking botanical cocktails and shopping for things to wrap around my ankles. That would be nice but no, i'm not. There's a lot of talk about "instagram lifestyles" and how unrealistic they are lately, but i feel like fashion magazines have been guilty of that for years. So the next time you pick up a mag, and feel you're slightly inadequate because you can't quite fit jumbo trousers into your lifestyle, don't worry, the majority of us can't. 
The first part of the following sentence might make me sound like a grandad but bare with me - I actually prefer to read magazines centred around a hobby or topic now. (Don't panic I'm not an avid gardener or stamp collector but if i was that would be fine too) It's the reason i have a subscription to magazines like Blogosphere, so i can read a magazine that is actually relevant to me and also why i look to blogs for fashion inspo, after all they're far more likely to tell me about my dream bargain Primark bag than Vogue would ever be. 

Secondary disclaimer coming now too, if you do choose to live your life by the Vogue bible then good for you, there's nothing wrong with taking what they write seriously - there's a reason it's one of the most legendary magazines around. It's just not for me anymore. 
- Maria x

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Friday, 7 July 2017

A fragrance for summer that happens to be a Giorgio Armani dupe

In my mind summer isn't so much associated with smelling nice, but rather smelling a little bit sweaty on the tube at rush hour. Just me? ..Okay. Never the less i still romanticise over spritzing on a summery fragrance, and frolicking around a beach at sunset (maybe a bit less frolicking and more sitting). So when it comes to summer, i do usually pick up a new fragrance so i can fulfil at least some of my summer dreams, a few weeks ago i got sent the new Ghost Sweetheart Forever fragrance and it's become my go to for day to day.  

Ghost sweetheart forever review

I feel like i don't feature fragrance that much on my blog, but it's actually one of my favourite parts of my beauty routine. There's just something about completing your whole look by spraying on something beautiful, and getting that "you smell really nice" compliment. 

I'm a sweet / floral scent person, think YSL Black Opium and my particular favourite Chanel Chance Eau Vive, which might not be for anyone but i love smelling as sweet as the sugar plum fairy, no shame. Ghost Sweetheart Forever is basically like the new Ghost Sweetheart, it's kind of like the 2017 makeover of a classic, complete with rose gold detailing - can you get more 2017 than rose gold? Nope. 

Ghost sweetheart forever review

I'm going to be honest, despite working on a perfume counter for the best part of a year i should know all about the fragrance notes, but i don't, i got through that with a lot of made up waffle. Ghost sweetheart forever comes under the floriental category, which matches florals with woody and spicy notes to make a fragrance that smells a little bit less like you've been slapped in the face with a bouquet, and more like "flowers are nice but i also don't want to smell like an old lady". Florientials to me are like the young woman's floral. 

When i first smelt this i knew i loved it but i also knew it smelt like something else, you know when you can't quite put your finger on a scent, and your head feels like it's going to fall apart trying to place it? It's kind of the same feeling you get when you walk into a room and forget what you've gone in for. Alas, after wearing it for about an hour and multiple wrist sniffs on the tube later, it came to me: Giorgio Armani Si

This to me, smells very similar to Giorgio Armani Si, the incredibly expensive fragrance that i was about to cave and spend wayyy too much money on. It's not exactly the same, that would be impossible, but it's similar enough when you consider a 50 ml bottle of Armani Si is £73 and the Ghost alternative is £34.

Ghost sweetheart forever review

This is an EDT so it doesn't have that incredible lasting power of a high end perfume. However i am really in love with this scent, and would happily buy a handbag friendly 30ml to have on hand to top up on a longer than average day. On a quick trip out or if you're only planning a day time excursion however this is perfect, especially for warm days where the thought of wearing a heavy over powering scent on public transport makes everyone slightly dizzy.. cue disapproving looks from fellow travellers. 

I've found my daytime summer scent, and it just so happens to be a designer dupe. Don't believe me? They're both in Boots, so go in and smell them for yourself! - Maria x

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Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Jumping into the world of Colourpop

I wouldn't call myself a makeup snob.. well maybe just a little bit. Even though i hate to admit it, and while there are so many good affordable makeup brands, i do usually find that the standard is just higher when you pay a little bit more. Something that made me question my thoughts was the rise of Colourpop cosmetics. Since 2014, the internet (instagram i see you), has been filled with glowing reviews for a brand who's lipsticks cost around 6$, that's less than £6 to you and me British folk. 

So, is possibly the most popular makeup brand at the minute all it's cracked up to be? I feel like i've just said the line that would start a police investigation show .. Let's investigate. 

Colourpop cosmetics super shock shadows love line foursome review ultra matte ultra satin out and about bundle gemini by night pressed powder palette swatches 2017

It's only right that we start with lipsticks, after all i'm pretty sure they're the product that got Colourpop to where they are right now. The shiny little beautifully packaged shades below are from the out and about bundle, before i go on can we talk about how amazing it is that they do bundles where you literally save money?? Can you imagine walking into boots and being able to buy a prepackaged set of lipsticks..nope? Neither can i, we're missing out over here. Also they do minis, minis. I'll stop going on now, but they're just so ahead of the game i can't get over it. The out and about bundle has a total value of 18$ when bought separately, but buying them in the bundle means you only pay 15$..see..bundles. It contains 2 ultra mattes and 1 ultra satin which i was pretty pleased about, this is my first time trying Colourpop so it's nice to be able to try a variation of formulations.  

Colourpop cosmetics ultra matte ultra satin out and about bundle review swatches baracuda viper times square

Okay let's get to it, the goods, the swatches. As i write this it's 6 days since i took these photos and swatches, and i still have faint marks on my arm from the liquid lipsticks .. that's what you get for being lazy and not cleaning them off straight away, but it also tells you a lot about their lasting power. 

Viper and Times square are the ultra mattes from the bundle, and are the most similar formula to a Kylie lip kit that i have ever found, but obviously much cheaper. They're a very true liquid matte, as in not a lip cream but a thin liquid that dries down in under a minute to a completely matte finish. 
Being a true liquid matte formula it does mean these are on the drying side, but i think that pretty much comes hand in hand when you're talking actual liquid formulas rather than cream, and they are definitely no more drying than any other liquid lipstick. The finish however is really soft to touch, (i don't usually make a habit of touching my mouth but you know when testing calls), so when i actually touch my lips with these on it feels very light and not like i'm touching an inch thick of liquid lipstick. 

The wear time with the liquid mattes is also very good, i'd say if you were going to be wearing this all day at work for example you could apply these in the morning and get away with only having to top it up after lunch. Even though i would top it up after eating, its only really necessary in the centre of the lips, the majority of it does stay on but there's inevitable wear and tear right in the middle where food actually touches. 

Colourpop cosmetics ultra matte ultra satin out and about bundle review swatches baracuda viper times square

Baracuda is the warm toned ultra satin from the bundle, and out of the two formulas is probably my favourite. Even though i've always been a die hard liquid matte girl, there's something about the liquid satin formula that's slightly winning me over. The liquid satin is less drying but actually has better wear time than most of the liquid mattes i have in my collection from other brands, and although it doesn't wear for as long as the Colourpop liquid mattes it does come pretty damn close. Even though it's a satin formula it does still come across fairly matte, so if you want a semi matte finish this could be for you. 

Both formulas are really pigmented and the tiniest amount goes a long way, but that also means you're at risk of making a mess, so a liner is definitely needed with both the ultra mattes and satins. Another thing to note is that these shades dry quite dark, i'm going to order some myself but i think i'll go for shades which look the tiniest bit too light, in the hope that they'll dry a slightly darker colour.  
When i remember that these are 6$ each it blows my mind, i honestly don't think i'd be able to tell the difference in a blind test between a 6$ Colourpop lipstick and a 25$ high end one. 

Colourpop cosmetics super shock shadows love line foursome review

Everyone does liquid lipsticks now, so my true excitement comes from brand exclusives and super shock shadows are a colourpop exclusive. Ask anyone about these and they'll tell you a tale of the most unique and beautiful shadow formula the world ever did see, i was pretty excited to crack these open and essentially cover my eyelids in them, and i was not disappointed. I have the Love Line foursome, 4 supershock shadows with a mix of finishes. I don't even know how to describe the super shock formula, it's almost as if it's a cream to powder finish, they're insanely pigmented and the smoothest shadows i have ever used. 

Colourpop cosmetics super shock shadows love line foursome review swatches

Out of everything i received the super shock shadows have to be my favourites, you can see from the swatches just how pigmented these are with absolutely no patchiness or chalkiness, and that's down to the ultra smooth formula. All of these swatches are from one finger application, honestly if i was someone looking at these swatches i would swear they were photoshopped, but 1) Do i even know how to photoshop??? Sadly no. 2) Do i pay for photoshop??? Even more, no. These are probably one of the most innovative products i've ever tried; i think we've gotten so used to brands just copying each other lately, so to find a completely original product and formulation is amazing and i'm over excited. 

I apply these with my finger (I know i've gone against every rule we've made since the early 2000s but they work better this way) and then do any final blending with a brush. The shadows in Love Line couldn't be more me either; shimmery golds, dusty pink and neutral browned toned purples are literally all i ever wear so it's the perfect quad for me. I've been wearing "brady" all over the lid and "static" in the outer corner constantly, and if i want to make it a more nighttime look i'd add "sequin" to the centre of the lid and "truth" in the inner corner. Super shock shadows are so unique, i really think you could get away with wearing just one shade all over and still have a really unique look, also that's a time saving dream. 

Colourpop cosmetics pressed powder shadow gemini by night palette review

If Super shock shadows don't sound like you're thing, (really what the hell is your thing if they aren't but okay) then Colourpop also do pressed powder shadows that either come in palettes or singles. I have the Gemini by Night palette which again, couldn't be more perfect for me - look at those shades, they're the embodiment of the heart eyes emoji. 
I feel like everyone is going to get bored of me saying how everything is amazing but, they are just deal with it. These pressed powder shadows are some of the best powder shadows i've tried, yep I'm going there again they're that good, especially considering the price. 

It's easy to swatch a shimmery shade and get good pigmentation and instantly think it's the best shadow you've ever seen, so i never start with shimmery shades anymore, i start with the light matte shades. Light matte shades are the hardest to get right, most of the time even in a 45$ palette i'll swatch a light matte and get literally nothing from it - chalk anyone? Look at the swatches below, more importantly look at the shade "golden gate bridge" a warm nude, usually a shade like this would be barely detectable but look at it. My mouth opened when i swatched this, i can't believe the colour payoff from a nude shade, the proof is in the swatching my friends. 

All of the Colourpop shadows, pressed and super shock had great lasting power too, i didn't get any creasing even when i went without primer (which was most of the time, i'm lazy) and that's something not even all expensive shadows can do. Also the pressed powder shadows are incredibly blendable, they work well alongside other shadows from different brands and don't ever bunch up or get stuck in one place mid blend. 
One thing to note with my swatch of "Moscow sunrise" below is that it is much more pink in person, it really is more similar to the shade you see in the pan picture above. I'm not sure why on my camera it photographed so warm/orange toned, but if you check out the swatch on the Colourpop website here it is closer to that shade. 

Colourpop cosmetics pressed powder shadow gemini by night palette review swatches

Are we all still here? We got through my first ever Colourpop experience, after trying it for myself i get it. I get the hype. I've got my eye on a pretty long list of other Colourpop products and shades, brb setting up instagram notifications so i know when they're doing free international shipping.

Do you have anything from Colourpop? - Maria x

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Disclaimer: This post contains PR samples. 
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Monday, 3 July 2017

Getting scientific with skincare

I love it when my skincare sounds "sciencey", don't you? Even though a lot of products use complicated terminology to convince you they've got the most high tech products around, most of the time it's all in the wording with no substance. Regardless, i get a little kick out of using something that in my dreams was made by someone in a lab coat. Indeed Labs are one of those brands in question, they give off this image sitting on the shelf in boots, cased in their clean, colour coded packaging, that there's serious science behind the products ..but are they actually any good?

Indeed Labs Laboratories skincare hydraluron nanoblur review

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Friday, 30 June 2017

My new holy grail primer

You wouldn't paint a wall without a primer underneath, so why would you apply your foundation without one? I don't know about you, but i feel like there was actually a time when primer just didn't really exist in mainstream makeup terms. Obviously they were present in the kits of makeup artists, and within high end brands, but they have only really integrated properly into the drugstore market in the last ten years. I think i only discovered the miracle of primer in around 2013, since then it's one of the only makeup products i use that has become non-negotiable, if I'm applying foundation there will be a primer underneath, fact

The primer i choose to use however, has always been under negotiations - is anyone else picturing a board meeting of men in suits discussing what primer i should use today? Although i've had a few favourites that i've repurchased over the years, there was always just something missing. That was until i got this Pixi flawless & poreless primer in the goody bag from the Blogosphere Magazine blog awards, and my life (maybe just my makeup life..) changed. 

Pixi by Petra flawless and poreless primer review
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Wednesday, 28 June 2017

3 L'Oréal Professionnel haircare heroes

I've never been a haircare person, I've always been a face person and by face person i mean makeup and skincare person. I feel like you're either one or the other, but recently i've been getting more and more into haircare and shutting down my own stereotype - you can in fact obsess about multiple areas of personal appearance at once, who knew! I've always associated that shiny new hair feeling with the work of a hairdresser, but recently i've been coming pretty close myself with the use of these three haircare heroes. 

L'Oréal professionnel mythic oil review

I have to admit, i'm really bad when it comes to making an effort with styling products, but no more! Now every time i wash my hair, the first thing i do after i towel dry is spritz the Tecni Art Pli Thermo-fixing spray through the roots and lengths of my hair. I probably end up using way too much of this but i can't help it, it leaves me smelling like i've just come out of the hairdresser and it means my hair is ready for whatever i throw at it. This is heat activated so it means when you style your hair with heat the spray works to add volume and hold the style in place; this makes such a difference to the volume of my hair and how long my curls last. I have number 4 which is designed for thick hair which is most definitely me, but if you've got slightly thinner hair they do different variations for different hair types. 

L'Oréal professionnel mythic oil  Tecni Art  infinium review

The Mythic oil has to be my favourite step in my new found hair care routine, and i actually use this at two different stages - a little bit when my hair is damp for heat protection, and a little bit after styling to tame fly aways and give extra smoothness (is that a word??) and shine to my hair. This is probably the most luxurious hair product i've ever used and the reaction it gets from people around me shows it's worth the using, it's literally like having salon styling everyday. Even though this is pure luxury it's actually pretty multi use as well, which is great if like me, you're lazy when it comes to extra effort with your hair. 

This acts as my heat protectant, which let's be honest i probably would've skipped without this, the product i use to nourish my hair, to give my hair that sleek look and maybe just maybe a little bit of me is over using it for the scent. My hair is just so soft with this, i can't get over it, i've become that person who asks their mum to feel their hair. 

L'Oréal professionnel mythic oil  Tecni Art  infinium review

The final step in my routine is the Infinium hairspray, i used to think hairspray was just hairspray but boy was i corrected when i tried this. The stylists used this on my hair when we shot the faster smarter colour transformation video (that's coming soon if you're wondering what I'm going on about) and i really saw the spray put to work. This just gives the most incredible hold without feeling like you've got a bucket of hairspray on your head, it keeps whatever style i've decided upon in place and the best thing about it is that it just brushes out. You only need the tiniest amount of this, but despite that i know i'll be picking up one of the huge cans when i've run out of this. 

Shop my hair heroes: 



What are your haircare heroes? - Maria x

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Disclaimer: This post contains products gifted to me. 
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Monday, 26 June 2017

A peek into the Peacocks A/W collection

Is it wrong for me to want it to be autumn already? 30 + degree heat has left me resenting the sun and every night when i lay in bed, aka the fires of hell i'm dreaming of cool October nights. Luckily i got a slice of A/W last week when i visited the A/W preview from Peacocks, here's what they have in store for the colder months:

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

 Winterfell collection:

I'm not saying i'm going in order of favourites but the Winterfell collection grabbed my eye immediately and just happens to be first in the lineup.. We all know if it's pink and possibly fluffy i'll gravitate towards it, and the Winterfell collection ticked a lot of my boxes. Think feminine pastel pinks, muted greys matched with distressed denim. The light and flowy florals we're seeing in summer aren't going anywhere, in A/W17 they'll be matched with a thick fluffy coats or a padded velvet bomber for the colder months. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

I saw a lot of Faux fur at Peacocks for A/W17, the pieces looked luxurious, thick and expensive. The thing is, these may look expensive but they're actually quite the opposite; the pink fluffy statement coat pictured above will set you back a mere £45. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

I only noticed after taking this photo that there's actually 5 different textures just in this frame, but they're all curated perfectly so the tones just work together. Who would've thought you could get velvet, sequins, denim, wool and faux fur all in one photo? I wouldn't suggest piling them all on together though.. well i mean you could in theory but you'd also be wearing three tops at the same time. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Now i know that pink and florals will continually be socially acceptable or "in" throughout A/W17, i will happily dress in them head to toe and i'll definitely be heading to Peacocks to get my fix. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

The future is female collection: 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Now that's what i call a collection name, A/W is the future and the future is female with Peacocks. This collection is basically power dressing but less 80's and more cool, It's got structure through the jackets but it's kept a little more relaxed with slogan t-shirts.
Speaking of slogan t-shirts you may have seen this "the future is female" tee on my insta stories recently, it's basically become my uniform since i got it at the preview and it'll translate perfectly into my autumn winter wardrobe. Once again it's ridiculously affordable at £10, and in a world where people are paying £25 for a t-shirt i think that's a damn good deal. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Bloomsbury collection:

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

The bloomsbury collection is what i would call slightly more classic A/W with it's darker tones, but it keeps the continuing boho vibes from summer through florals and delicate, sheer fabrics. Also can we talk about this faux shearling coat? I've seen these at all the other A/W previews and i'm set on getting one for autumn, in true Peacocks style the one above is only £60 and will probably be one of a few key pieces to take you through autumn winter. Similar shearling style coats that i've seen from other retailers have been over £100, Peacocks have really stepped up their game recently but they still manage to keep their price point low, and we all know i'm all for a bargain. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends


When you see the coat above what comes to mind? I think i'd easily say this was over £100 but like the other coats in question it's £60. £60 for a long line, autumn winter essential that'll effortlessly carry you from day to night? Yes please, and because it's only £60 i'll probably be picking up two statement coats for the season and still pay less than i would for one from somewhere else. I mean you can never have too many coats right? 

Also bees will be a thing in A/W17, mark my words. I saw them at Boohoo, Primark and now here at Peacocks, this little bag is a perfect way to add your own nod to the trend without going too overboard. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Crafted Country collection:

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

I have a confession to make, although i was born in the city and I'm pretty sure i'll always reside here, i have a tiny part inside of me that has always wanted to be a country dweller. The idea of morning walks in big coats, and sitting by a fire in a country pub in a chunky knit gives me all types of feels. So when i walked into the next preview room to be greeted by the "crafted country" collection, i knew "wrapped up warm a/w maria" was going to love this one. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Again we have multiple faux shearling coats, see i told you they were going to be in. This time they either take form in all black or in rich warm brown and mustard tones, with contrasting collars. Keeping with the topic of outwear there's also a lot of suede in crafted country, i feel like suede really completes an outfit and gives it something special. This duck egg blue suedette number fills my autumn winter light jacket search, it's so beautiful and could be straight out of a boutique but it'll be sold for £40. This is something that i could see Kate Middleton in, is that weird to say? Either way it proves they hit the nail on the head with the country aesthetic. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Florals and lace complete this collection and act amazingly alongside the thicker fabrics, layering means the looks are practical and sheer fabrics don't look out of place in colder climates. Who said dressing for the weather had to be practical? 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Cocktail hour & La belle époque collections:

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

I know, i know it's June and the last thing you're thinking about is the festive season. However in the world of PR everything is months ahead, and you can't avoid festive fashion at an autumn winter press day. So naturally Peacocks had the cocktail hour collection, brimming with sparkles and sequins perfect for ..dare i say it? Christmas parties. And the La belle époque collection for your rich velvety formal looks that you could take from desk to dance floor where the occasion doesn't quite require a dress, just one of those ones for a nice top, you know? 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Long sleeved and sparkly is my type of autumn winter dress; i can imagine pairing this black number with one of the faux fur fluffy coats from the other collections, for a chilly evening party ready outfit.

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends  

With dresses for as little as £22 and shoes for £35, Peacocks have covered the bases for when you need to start planning your A/W party calendar ..without having to dip into your Christmas presents budget. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Over the knee boots became a thing a few months ago, but i have a feeling we're learning more towards a mid leg slouch boot for the coming season - there we're plenty present at Peacocks. There's something quite "dressed up but still casual" about slouch boots, almost like you've planned your outfit perfectly but want it to seem effortless. Either way, if you made a conscious decision to wear them with your cocktail dress instead of heels, your legs will certainly thank you for being slightly warmer, and probably more stylish. 

Peacocks A/W17 collection highstreet autumn fashion trends

Peacocks have pieced together A/W17 perfectly, i was actually pretty taken aback by how on trend yet affordable everything was. I will no longer be paying over a tenner for a slogan t-shirt that's for sure, and i'm currently dreaming about the fact i'll be able to afford more than one statement coat for the coming season. 

What's your favourite collection? - Maria x

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Friday, 23 June 2017

Beside the seaside

*insert stereotypical line about going to the seaside, British weather, blah blah blah* What a way to start a blog post, if that hasn't enticed you to read more i don't know what will.. 
On Tuesday i hopped on a train, waved goodbye to the shard and ended up at the beach, otherwise known as what is becoming an annual summer trip to Brighton. (Although it was a little less "hop on train" and more "train was cancelled on the way out and 3 hours to get home" but that's besides the point, i must've hopped at some point. Anyway without any further ramblings, here's my day in pictures. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

Like every time i take a day trip i had researched restaurants in advance, and had decided on The Breakfast Club; anywhere that serves breakfast food all day is my type of gaff so that was our first port of call. This place is a must visit if you're in Brighton, and fond of both breakfast foods and cool interiors. The owner wanted to create a Miami vice kind of style and they definitely nailed it, that wood panelling made me feel like i was in 1984 and i didn't hate it, quite the opposite actually, i love somewhere that has a clear image behind it. Also the food is pretty damn good too and the staff were lovely, which is probably the thing i should've started off with but you know interiors, instagram, all of that. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

After being filled to the brim with an all American breakfast we headed out into the lanes for a little walk around, this is my *second* favourite part of Brighton, and i'm 99% sure that's down to the little flag bunting - i'm easily swayed. The lanes also have some really great shops, lots of little independent boutiques but also things like SpaceNK if you're looking to splash some cash on a beauty purchase while by the sea. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

As it got to about midday it did really feel like we were walking around the actual fires of hell, so we decided to retreat to Brighton Pier and get a little bit more of a sea breeze. The Pier is my favourite spot in Brighton, you know the ice cream signs have been there years and everything is just classic British seaside. Although this hasn't stopped me constantly wondering if i could fall into the sea at any given moment in time, every time i step foot onto the pier. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

My outfit:



My outfit pretty much sums up my UK summer wardrobe, anyone who can dress up in the heat i applaud you but it's just not for me. If i had the choice my summer uniform would be my current outfit of pyjama shorts and a 3 year old harry potter T-shirt, but that isn't quite "outside of the house appropriate" so i'll stick to a top tucked into a skirt for now. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

Does anyone else get an uncomfortable feeling in their stomach when they see the weight of the rides and what they're being supported by? No? Just me then.. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

Ah here i am, surrounded by so many attractions.. the pier, the pavilion, and i take a photo on a metal chair. #Goals. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

Ice cream was available there and you'll be happy to know i made use of it, but i didn't get a photo because it seemed to disappear quite quickly into my stomach. All of the photos in the line above are quite a random collection but they show everything i love about the pier, with the bright colours and the fonts. 

brighton day out guide to brighton the breakfast club bloggers ootd

Finally we have the pavilion. It's really weird in a nice way when you come across the pavilion, because you're on a normal shopping street and all of a sudden theres this huge ex royal residence that looks like it's come straight out of India. I've never been inside so i can't say whether that's a must do or not but i would say go and visit the grounds just for a look around, you can't go to Brighton and miss it. 

Have you ever been to Brighton? - Maria x

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