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. 

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What are your haircare heroes? - Maria x

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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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Sunday, 18 June 2017

Accessories for summer

As i sit writing this it's 31 degrees. You may have an image of an Instagram worthy poolside shot, of me typing away on my MacBook firmly positioned on a sun lounger in the shade, sipping away on a botanical cocktail. (Vogue says they're in for the summer) You would be wrong if said image popped into your head, it's 31 degrees in London, i'm sweating and i've spilt baked beans down my top which, coincidentally i also wore yesterday. 

Introductions aside, if you couldn't quite grasp what was going on in that last paragraph, i was trying to hint that summer is now here in full swing. (That is until the next downpour, which is scheduled for tomorrow apparently) And what comes hand in hand with a change of season? New clothes! Or new accessories in this case. 

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi ootd

I've finally grown the confidence to wear sunglasses, it might seem weird to some that wearing sunglasses would require confidence but to me it does. It's kind of like how i can only wear a hat outside of the UK.. I always thought sunglasses didn't suit my face and that they drew attention to you, but i've found that they really do the opposite. Also i now understand why celebrities wear them so much, because they do make you look so much better when you're not looking your best. I certainly won't be squinting anymore in S/S17, these sunglasses have been pretty much surgically attached to my head ever since we've had the slightest bit of sun. You won't catch me wearing them inside quite yet though, that's reserved for special types of people and by those people, i mean idiots. 

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi

Let's face it, the star of the show is the new Daniel Wellington classic petite bondi watch. I've had the same watch for a year now, and although i loved it and wore it everyday it was due an upgrade. Daniel Wellington watches have been on my radar since around 2015, so to get sent a release from the new summer collection was possibly one of the most exciting things to happen back in May when i got this. I have not left the house without this on my wrist ever since i got it, the white and rose gold goes with everything i wear and i don't think you can get a combination more perfect for summer. 

Now i've got a nice watch i can't help but roll up my sleeves so it gets seen, and now it's properly getting into warmer weather i can wear it with dresses and t-shirts and have my new pride and joy on full display. You can get 15% off everything on the Daniel Wellington site, including my watch with the code MARIAJ15 until the 30th June. 

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi

Bags aren't something i actually buy very often. But recently i decided to up my bag game (is that a thing?) and invest in a new little bag i could bring with me to events, that would make it look a little less like i had brought the kitchen sink to the party. I saw this bag and i knew instantly i was in love, it's not my usual style but there was something about it that i loved and the flowers scream summer. It's even better that it cost £7 from good old Primark. One thing i will say is that it is very small, and if you're a glasses wearer like me you'll have to fight tooth and nail to fit your case in, it's a glamorous life isn't it? I do manage to get the essentials in though, and that's good enough for me when i'm trying to look a lot more sophisticated than i actually am. 

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi

Outfits for summer 2017 accessories primark bag daniel wellington classic petite bondi

What do you accessorise with in summer? - Maria x

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