Monday, August 18, 2014

yes to carrots? NO TO CARROTS.


it’s likely you may have heard of the brand Yes To – they’re apparently a global leader in natural beauty products and on paper seem pretty great, which is why i picked up a couple of their products to try out. as you can probably guess my experience was not the best. in fact, i only actually tried the eye cream (pictured) and the rest of the things i bought were put in the bin.

i should probably start with explaining i do not have sensitive skin at all, my skin in general is quite good – i don’t have breakouts and don’t suffer with overly oily/dry skin at all. i’ve never reacted to any product before (and i’ve put a lot of stuff on my face over the years.) obviously i know reactions can happen to anything/at any time but i’m not usually someone it happens to, if that makes sense.

i used the eye cream on the 24th july, usually i apply eye cream right before bed but this time i for some reason or other decided to apply it earlier on in the evening… and i’m very thankful i did. within 20 minutes my face felt hot, then quite quickly the area around my eyes started to burn and spread across my face. bearing in mind the cream was only put around my eye area, this was quite worrying. i washed my face immediately and was left with the area around my eyes burnt and missing a layer of skin and the rest of my face red and swollen.

i tweeted my experience to @Yes_To and as you can see quite a few different ladies replied with similar stories and eventually Yes To responded telling me to email my concerns to their PR company, which i did.
the PR company were apologetic and offered to send me more products (!) which i obviously declined, however they did refund me for everything i bought. the PR did tell me that they hadn't received ANY other complaints in the UK and US which i’m not 100% sure is true, judging by twitter.

my complaint was forwarded to the product team to which (after a week and a half) said there wasn't anything wrong with the eye cream (expected). the email however ended with “sorry you didn't enjoy our products” – ERMMMMM. the picture below is my skin a couple of weeks after using the cream and i've emailed and waited over a month to conclude they're sorry i didn't enjoy their products. nothing like kicking a girl when she's down is there?

oh, and they're now ignoring all my emails and not replying to my tweets anymore. awesome customer service, eh?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Wearing Skirts this Autumn: Styles to Choose and How to Wear Them

Skirts are a great way to look and feel great, no matter what season we are in. Whether you’re a girly girl or you could do with a touch more femininity, a good skirt is a great place to start. As autumn draws nearer, the way we wear skirts will change slightly. No more will a mini skirt and strappy top be enough to keep us warm – not unless we are holidaying abroad, anyway! Instead, we’ll be opting for thicker skirts paired with some chunky tights and a pretty, fitted jumper.

The type of skirt you will be drawn to will depend on your figure, and personal style. There’s a wide range of George’s skirts available, which are fantastic if you’re on a budget and could do with avoiding high street prices. If you’re hoping to wear more skirts this autumn, take a look at these various styles and hints on how to wear them.

An A Line Skirt would be a perfect skirt to add to your autumn wardrobe. As the name suggests, the A line skirt forms an ‘A’ shape, cinching at the waist and widening towards the hemline. Team with a pretty blouse and ankle boots for a look that is bang on trend this winter. The A line skirt is also perfect for skimming over any lumps and bumps, and for that reason it would be ideal for ladies with larger hips. They will also help to balance those who are a little more top-heavy, adding the illusion of curves where, ordinarily, there may not be any.

The maxi skirt continues to be a popular choice for women, throughout the various seasons. The summer may have seen some bright, floral prints being flaunted, but classic black, or monochrome, designs may be more apt during the autumnal months. Pair with some cute ballet pumps and a simple top, and accessorise with statement jewellery.

While it may be a little cold to bring out the mini skirt in all its glory, if you pair it with some chunky knit tights, you’ll be good to go! The mini skirt is an ideal choice for those who have the legs to flaunt them; team with some calf length boots and a cashmere sweater or biker jacket for a great look.

Heading out for an evening? A bodycon midi skirt with camisole top would look fabulous. Pop a cardigan or denim jacket over your shoulders and you’ll stay warm and cosy, too.

If you’re looking for something a little more formal, the humble pencil skirt would be a great option. Perfect for the office, a pencil skirt worn with a pretty blouse or tunic top, can look elegant and refined. Similarly, if you pop one on with a cute collared top, you’ll look smart, yet stylish. Wear with tights – nude or dark – and some pretty heels.

Even though it’s getting a little colder, it doesn’t mean you have to say no to wearing skirts. Wear alongside jumpers, cardigans and tights, and you can look stylish and chic (and stay warm) with ease. 

*sponsored post

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

loupug turns 4.

yesterday my little fat pug turned four years old. i honestly can't believe it's been three years since i wrote about his first birthday! that was such a mother type thing to say, sorry. it's crazy how much he's changed since then, he's properly grown into his rolls and wrinkles and he even sports a little grey chin now. he's his very own little character now and completely understands you when you talk to him. he knows where his pug friends live and if you let him, will take you there when you walk him. he yawns when you tickle his chin and he really doesn't like horses. he absolutely loves children and recently was caught licking a small child's mini milk out of her hand. other dogs (apart from pugs and his best friend the dobermann) tend not to like him so much and he's been attacked quite a few times in his little life and you'd think by now he'd perhaps retaliate or try to fight back but, he doesn't. he cowers and cries which is heartbreaking but he doesn't have an aggressive bone is his little fat body. i know people say you should never trust a dog 100% as they can always turn, but i 100% trust loupug. he spends most of his time sleeping and the rest of it eating - he refuses to eat on a sunday because he knows he'll get a sunday roast. he goes to the toilet every night at 9.30pm and goes to bed every night at 10pm. don't ask me how he can tell the time though, because i have no idea.

Monday, June 30, 2014

narsissist eye and cheek palettes

insert heart shaped eyes emoji here.

HOW BEAUTIFUL? i've been contemplating nars eyeshadows for a while now but could never quite bring myself to buy any - mainly down to price and not having a clue where to start. and then i noticed this palette (which you'll have to excuse already being used, bad blogger..) and it was PERFECT and far better value for money. full of completely wearable mostly neutral colours and best of all, 14/15 of them are permanent so if i do ever run out of an eyeshadow i can't live without then i can easily replace it.

as a first time nars eyeshadow user, i am impressed. these really are as buttery soft and pigmented as everyone says. i'm faithful to the urban decay primer potion (the only primer that actually does something) which i always use underneath any eyeshadow so i'm unsure how these would last without. they're easy to apply, easy to blend, easy to wear.. they're just bloody lovely.

i wasn't sure if i'd buy the cheek palette at first. orgasm was my first nars blusher and i loved it, but for some reason never repurchased it.. laguna  has always intrigued me but never enough to make me buy it and devotee is limited edition so that put me off a bit. but then payday happened and suddenly the last one was on hold for me in my local space nk and... i bought it. it's still new so not as loved as the eye palette yet but i'm really enjoying it so far. the highlighter is lovely and has a sort of 'wet' finish to it. you're probably wondering why you'd even want to look like you have wet cheek bones and inner eyes but it just looks good ok! (seriously it just looks really nice on the skin) i find all three work together really nicely too which is a bonus.

Friday, June 13, 2014

pug update

hello from loupug and i. i haven't really posted properly about loulou in a long time since 2012 actually! which is crazy because i love him and he's beautiful. you can follow loulou on tumblr if you want because he's a much better blogger than i am and is well on his way to being tumblr famous..

as you can see by the pictures above little loupug is getting old and now sports a grey chin. i say old - he's 4 this year but is very much an old man for the most part. his nature hasn't changed since my last post, he's still very loving and enjoys sitting on humans as much as possible and watching people shower. he loves playing with other dogs even more now too, he has no fear at all!

the only main thing that is different is he's now allowed off his lead in certain places.. he has a few doggy pals he plays with including a great dane and a dalmatian. they're so cute because the size difference is obviously huge and little loupug the tank can't keep up with them (though tries his best) so they wait for him to catch up before running around some more. ADORABLE.

he's very regimental and i'm pretty sure he has a bit of doggy OCD. he likes routine and for things to stay the same. my dad used a new coffee mug recently and louie cried and cried because it was different. (i'm actually not joking) every night at 9.30pm he goes into the garden to pee and every night at 10pm he goes to bed. he will literally stop whatever he's doing and walk to bed at 10pm no matter what's happening. he gets very confused when the clocks change because apparently pugs don't work to day light saving time.

i've opted not to breed louie thus far just because it's never felt right. he still has his bits but he's never bothered to hump which i'm not sure if weird or not.. he does occasionally try it on his dad (I KNOW) but that's more of a dominance thing i think. and he always loses because his dad is the boss. (pictured above)

louie still doesn't bark at other dogs even if they bark/act aggressive towards him. he cowers and cries until someone picks him up. he's still the wimpy kid at school who cries to his mum or sits by the teacher at lunchtime. i'm okay with that though! he does however hate horses... on tv. he's very good at watching tv and learns which adverts have horses in and he shouts before the advert even starts. little weirdo.

lou loves all dogs/cats/everything but he does have a best pal/boyfriend and they are so in love. they went for a romantic stroll on the beach a few weeks ago and look how closely the walk together. they're completely besotted with each other and they even know where each other lives! SO CUTE, RIGHT? shame they're both boys because they'd make excellent babies.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

home is where the heart is

another day, another post! i'm getting better at this. 2014 is going to be the year my boyfriend and i make our flat look the way we want it to. we have lots of plans for what we want to do, we just can't seem to find the time to do it. i guess life's too short to worry too much about the little things but i know we'll both be a lot happier once we're finished.

for now i thought i'd share a little bit of our front room - you'll notice a theme of pugs. this will no doubt continue throughout the flat which i'm sure everyone's happy about..! my favourite thing in the entire world are the flying pugs which sit above the TV. they're actually on sale at pugsmightfly though still stupidly expensive. they're adorable though! the london signs were sent to me by out there interiors and i think we may look into buying a third sign to fill up the wall.

next on the list is the spare bedroom which we need to (start!)finish really soon as my sister and niece are coming to visit in a couple of weeks to see BEYONCE. oh my god i am so excited!! (for beyonce.. though having my sister and niece visit will be nice too...) 2014 is looking good for concerts and gigs - already got tickets for taylor swift, alkaline trio (x2!!) and brandnew. PHEW!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Valentine’s Blues Remedy Kit

Another year, another tacky and over-commercialised day has passed where those with significant others are expected to announce their love with over the top gestures. Never mind the fact that nearly all ideas of love point towards spontaneous shows of affection, the 14th of February is firmly cemented as the time for couples to get cheesy. For singletons, it’s never any fun and you can be forgiven for wanting to make the whole thing a distant memory as quick as possible. If you were celebrating singledom this year and are struggling to shake the post-valentines’ blues, get yourself the following essentials and prepare to forget all about the shameless cheese that couples have been plastering all over Facebook recently.

Whatever you do, try not to overdo it here. You want to have some feel good munchies rather than overindulge and end up feeling physically sick as well as metaphorically sick with Valentine’s Day. Get in some good food and yes, buy yourself some ice-cream – but maybe go for the 500ml tub instead of the 2 litre you’re mentally reaching for right now.

There are no shortage of chick flicks that are designed to help you forget your love-life woes in the world. Yet wait, they don’t help you do that at all! There’s always a love interest and our ‘heroine’ always ends up with him in some cheesy, boring and totally Valentine’s Day-esque way! Spurn the likes of Bridget Jones and Sex and the City and pick something with a strong, capable woman who you can totally relate to as you dig a spoon into that 2-litre tub you were told to stay away from. Alien, Terminator 2 and any action flick with Angelina Jolie in will show you the kickass independent type you’ll want to feel like rather than the soppy romantic who will flunk out at the first sign of their dream guy deciding they have time for her now.

In the past couple of years there has only been one way to relax in total don’t-give-a-damn comfort. The onesie is the perfect garment for sitting around watching films and forgetting about the silly things in life that are getting on your nerves. Valentine’s Day can be a faint memory with George's range of onesies for women, which offer great styles for relaxing in during your film sessions (try not to get any ice cream on yours).

What’s going to turn this from a battle against self-loathing and despair to an actually enjoyable evening of excellent films and cheeky snacking? Doing so with other humans present. Share your evening with some friends who are in the same boat and you can make some good memories rather than just try and push out undesirable ones. Probably best to tell them to bring their own ice cream.

There’s no need to make a big deal out of not making a big deal of Valentine’s Day, but if you manage to have a great night without the need for faux-romance and OTT acts of scheduled love, then more power to you.

*Sponsored post

Thursday, March 20, 2014

my make up storage


i just thought i'd do a little post about my current makeup situation. when i moved to london i left A LOT at my parents house (much to my mothers delight) and since then i've tried my best not to be lured in by fancy limited edition collections or the latest lipstick everyone's raving about. so far so good... ish.

i think i still probably have too much makeup for my one face so i'm trying to use up a bottle of foundation before i buy another and the only thing i buy regularly now is mascara. i've thrown a lot of stuff in the bin after realising how long it'd been in my collection.. quite a surprise to find out how fast make up goes out of date really! it makes me wonder how people with huge collections manage to use everything they own before it expires. i guess they probably don't! what a waste.

i have a system with the acrylic drawers (blogger cliche i know) where i have foundation/base products at the bottom then working up i have contours and highlighters, blushers, mascaras, eye products (exuding pallets which are in the cath kidston bag). on a sunday evening i tend to pick out what i want to use for the week and put everything in the little pink makeup bag, i find that's the easiest way to make sure i'm making the most of what i have!

that's pretty much it for makeup. in the cath kidston bag i also have hair stuff which topples over into the basket behind too. in the cath kidston tin is my weakness. nail polishes. as you can see it's overflowing and it's not big and it's not clever ok. i don't know how i've ended up with so much nail polish because again i left majority of it in newcastle!! my dressing area is moving soon so i'll probably use that as a chance to sort everything out... again.


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Top Tips and Advice for Plus-Size Style

With most UK women size 16 or above, the idea of plus-size doesn’t really exist. It’s more like “normal” and dressing to suit your body shape can be an ordeal regardless of how big, or small, you are. Curves need to be celebrated and, with a few snippets of advice, you’ll be able to complement your body shape in no time.

First thing’s first, you need to establish what body shape you are. If you are classed as ‘plus-size’, you’ll likely be apple-shaped, pear-shaped or hourglass. Once you know what shape you are, you can get down to the nitty gritty and style yourself to suit your shape, building confidence and self-esteem as you go!
  •  Hourglass shapes are typically curvaceous, with symmetrically curvy hips and bust. 
  •  Pear Shaped ladies have larger hips than bust. 
  •  Apple Shaped ladies may feel that their tummy is full and round, thus creating a larger waist. 
We should also consider the top-heavy girls out there, whose bust is the most dominant part of their bodies. Once you have settled on the body shape that best describes you, read on! There are some great tips and styling advice that will be able to help you create an enviously fabulous wardrobe in no time. 

Dress your Body Shape 
The key to dressing your body shape is to create the illusion of balance. For example, if you’re hourglass, you should show off your curves! Plenty of women would kill to have curves like yours! You could add a quality midi skirt from George that emphasises your waist and shows of your figure, perhaps. Meanwhile, if you’re pear-shaped, you may wish to add a blazer to your outfit, which would add shoulder width to balance out your hips.

Know what works
Just because you’ve seen the latest style on the catwalk doesn’t mean it’s going to work for your body, your style or your personality. Know what works and what you feel comfortable in.

Emphasise your assets
What do you love about your body? Are your legs to die for? Do you love your bust? Emphasise what you love and your confidence will soar. A midi skirt, for example, would show off your pins while still exuding elegance and sophistication. Use colours to your advantage – highlight the bits you love with a statement accessory or a bright piece of clothing, to draw attention to it.

Wear the right underwear
The surprising problem with many outfits is the underwear that’s underneath them. Make sure that if you have a large bust, you wear a well-fitting bra that has been measured for you. Equally, if you’d like to smooth your silhouette, wear shapewear that will help to cover any lumps and bumps.

Stick to smaller prints
If you’ve been paying attention to the catwalk, you’ll know that prints are back on top of the seasonal trend list, and if you’d like to dabble with them, opt for the smaller prints which will be more flattering. Emphasise your assets and brush past the bits that you’re not so confident with – you’ll be feeling fiiiiine in no time!

*sponsored post

Thursday, January 16, 2014

tout de la fruit

paris is wonderful isn't it? we only left three days ago and it already seems like a distant memory! i had a lovely time though and my boyfriend's going to have to work extra hard to make sure all of my christmas presents are this good in future! (i kid, i kid.. well.. maybe..)

we were very lucky with the weather, it didn't rain once and it wasn't too cold so we spent most of our long weekend wandering the streets, eating crepes and getting lost. it was pretty special. we did do one super touristy thing and went up the eiffel tower as we hadn't done that together before and apart from the queue it was magical. i didn't realise we'd been up at the top for over an hour just.. staring and taking it all in. (and taking stupid selfies)

the rest of our time was spent drinking wine (it is SO cheap the geordie in me still can't cope with this fact despite numerous visits to france). HUGE plastic bottles of wine for 2 euros. i'm basically trying to say i was drunk for most of my time in paris and i don't regret a thing. pictured above are crazy french versions of long island iced tea cocktails.. i know, right? those weren't so cheap but they were worth it.

i was treated to champagne and macaroons at laduréee on our final day which was the most incredible thing ever. i know there's a store in covent garden but it's nothing compared to the experience you get when you visit in paris. stupidly expensive i'd agree but it was one of my favourite things to do and i'd definitely recommend it if you go to paris.

i spent a lot of time in various sephoras and pharmacies browsing and trying to decide if i wanted to buy anything. the last picture is all of the things i bought - not quite as much as i expected i would but i'm looking forward to trying everything out. does anyone else get mega stressed out in sephora? there's just so much choice i find it impossible to shop in. in the end i figured all of the brands stocked there i could get in the uk/online so i opted for a few sephora own brand bits and bobs.

when we got back to london my ghd air dryer was waiting for me which was SUPER EXCITING. i've only used it once but i'm in love already. one more day until the weekend :)