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Secret Santa Presents For Her

Boots has some of the nicest beauty gift sets and you really can't go wrong with Ted Baker! The makeup bag itself is gorgeous, with it's floral design and rose gold hardware, it looks like it's worth far more than £14. Tucked away inside are 3 little luxuries - a hand cream, body spray and lip balm. Fantastic for a teenager, your bestie or your Mum.

£16.99
Woodwick is one of the most luxurious candles around and it makes for the perfect present in winter. The crackling sound as it burns and the warm cosy scent of Christmas (that's the only way I can describe Cinnamon Chai) makes this a gorgeous gift.

£8.99
Happy Jackson is one of my favourite brands on Flamingogifts.co.uk. Quite a few of my friends have just got a new house in the past year and a little homeware item from a fun, bright brand like Happy Jackson is perfect. I'm tempted to fill each one with sweeties too.

From bright and fun to sentimental and fashionable. Jewellery can be a safe option when it comes to secret santa gifts but staying under budget and making a good quality choice isn't always easy. Roma Jewellery ticks all the boxes with gorgeous bracelets, good quality materials and a cute message behind them. This bracelet combo looks amazing alongside my Tiffany's bracelet at a fraction of the price!

Secret Santa presents can be a bit of fun and this light up Gummybear keyring is hilarious and such a conversation starter. This would be a good stocking filler, or joke present if not something fun to go alongside a homeware or beauty product. I'm a bit tempted to buy a matching blue one for my boyfriend - is that cringe?!

Christmas Party Ready

Don't panic! There is still plenty of time for you to get ready for your Christmas party. But there’s no harm in starting early. With December just under a week away, office parties and Christmas do’s will be starting in no time. You obviously want to be looking your best for such an important event. This is the night you can let your hair down with your work colleagues, close friends and family. Everyone will be feeling the festive cheer and the mood will be infectious. Here is some advice to help you be the belle of the Christmas party ball.


Get your skincare in check
This is something you definitely need to do ahead of the big night. There’s little point upping your skincare regime the night before the party. You should invest in some suitable beauty products that work with your skin not against it. You should be thoroughly removing your makeup each night too, to avoid any nasty break outs. You can do this with a good quality fash wash and cleanser. Also start using a non-greasy moisturiser and body lotion twice a day to keep your skin looking youthful and glowing. The last thing you want is for your skin to look dull and dry for the social event of the year.

Plan out your look
It’s obvious when somebody hasn’t put much thought into how they look. It can be a sign of laziness which doesn’t give a great first impression. Especially in a room full of your work colleagues. Avoid this from happening by planning out your entire look. Experiment with colours and practise your makeup application techniques. You want to look flawless and badly applied makeup just won’t do. Also consider what to wear. Ask around to see what kind of vibe will be set at the party if you’ve never been to one before. Is what you're planning to wear suitable? You should still make an effort even if the attire is quite casual. Suitable footwear will be a must. You don't want to spend the whole night complaining about how much your feet hurt. If you’re desperate to wear your favourite heels, also take a pair of ballet pumps with you too. Just ensure they still go with your chosen outfit.

Treat yourself
It’s important during this season of giving that you treat yourself too. Treating yourself to a day at a spa is a great way of helping you feel relaxed. You can also take advantage of some of their treatments too. You could get a manicure or laser hair removal to get you party ready for instance. You can buy yourself a sparkly festive outfit for the party or some new accessories. You could even try out a new hair colour to change your look entirely. Whatever it is just make sure it makes you feel great and confident.

Use these tips to get yourself party ready in no time. You can never start too early and it’s important to look after and treat yourself too. Have a great time and enjoy yourself!

Birthday Outfit of the Night

On Saturday night we hosted our first party in our new house. We combined the housewarming with a birthday celebration for me and we had a great night. There's something about wearing a new dress for a birthday night and I had the perfect one from Yoins waiting in my wardrobe. It was less than £20, was delivered really quickly and got so many compliments. The cap sleeves are really flattering, the lace is good quality and it felt comfortable for the whole night (and into the early hours.) 



Dress: Yoins*
Shoes: New Look
Bracelets: Annie Haak, Pandora and Tiffany's.
Nails: Primark

Time to head back onto Yoins and get prepared for the Christmas festivities!

You Don’t Need Huge Finances To Build A Better Home

Creating a happier home environment for the family to grow is a never-ending battle. All properties need regular modernisation and a change of scenery. But it can feel like a homeowner’s nightmare, especially when you’re skint!
A lack of funds doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying the rewards of building a happier home atmosphere. It might require a little creative thinking, but you can still achieve those desired goals.


Get Painting
Whenever we enter a room, the first thing we tend to notice is the walls. They are the foundation for setting the tone of an entire area. Changing this single aspect can completely revamp the room. Best of all, it’s one of the cheapest upgrades to make.
A few tins of paint won’t cost you too much money while the work shouldn’t take any longer than a few hours per room. You don’t even need great DIY skills to complete the task effectively. Just be sure that you’ve prepped the walls first.
It’s cheap, cheerful, and brings a telling impact. And if you later decide against the colour, you can always paint back over it anyway.

Use High Street Trends
One thing that amazes me when it comes to home improvements is the fact many people go out of their way to specialist shops. Seriously, stop. The local high street is more than capable of fulfilling your needs. In many cases, you can do it in on a cheaper budget too.
High street trends can be particularly eye-catching too. If you shop at the right time, you may be able to find items on sale. If you are feeling very creative, you could raid shops for materials and upcycling existing items within the home.
This is your home, so be inspired.

Buy On Credit
I know, I know… alarm bells ringing. Seriously, though, it can be a lot easier to find small regular payments than one item in bulk. If need be, you can always sacrifice that Friday night takeaway to cover the cost of those new products.
Online catalogue shopping can be very useful when looking for furniture or finishing touches. It won’t hit your cash flow anywhere near as hard. Even if you have bad credit, visiting www.verdel.co.uk can see your home visions come true.
There are some areas in life where you should wait until you’ve got the cash. But the home is one factor that deserves to be kept in great condition at all times. If buying on credit allows you to do it, then you shouldn’t be afraid to use it.

Repair Rather Than Replace
There’s nothing more frustrating than having items that don’t work. In fact, getting your broken appliances back to full health should be a priority. After all, not having them in working order is impacting your daily routines.
In turn, this will reduce your enjoyment at home. On the other hand, replacing them entirely can cost an arm and a leg. In most cases, though, you could get them back to former glory with a repair job. Visit www.fixappliance.co.uk for more information.

And there you have it. A happy home without making your bank balance sad, what more could you want?

Primark Haul November 2015


£10

£7.90

£7.90

£18

£13


£12

£5
£11

5 Clever Ways to Go Shopping on a Budget

This time of year brings plenty of expenses our way. They’re not always that easy to manage either. If you also need to head out to buy some things for yourself, you can be in for a very expensive month. Still, there are plenty of ways you can shop smart, even through all the festivities. We’ve detailed five clever ways you can get what you need, without breaking your bank*

Set Your Budget - This is the first and most important step to take. Know what you can afford to pay and try your very best to stick to it. One of the best ways to tackle this challenge is to go through all your bank statements and receipts for the last few months. This will help you to identify what your essential spend is. Whatever is left over from your income is your budget.

What Do You Really Need? - Next you need to focus your sights on just the essentials. What do you really need to buy at the moment? This is the season when temptation can be just too much. There are so many gorgeous things for sale that can turn our heads. But you must keep your shopping expedition on track to hunt down just the things you need right now.

Bargain Basement - You might be able to put some of your purchasing off for another month or two. If you can’t, start your shopping at the sales counters. The closer it gets to Christmas, the tougher it may be to find a good bargain. But they’re out there. Some retailers are looking to shift stock to make room for all those Xmas novelty items. Get in there and grab a discount.

Finance - Some credit cards are offering 0% rates on transfers. This could save you some money. However, if your financial history means you’re not offered these deals, why not look to catalogues for bad credit history? Many catalogues sell everything you could possibly need from fashion to appliances. You could improve your wardrobe, and still find the gifts you need. Spread the cost with small monthly payments, but get everything you need for the winter delivered right now.

Shop Around - Providing you don't cost yourself a fortune in travel expenses, shopping around could save you money. The big e-tailers aren’t usually the cheapest anymore. If you know what you’re after, do a price comparison across the internet. Sometimes you’ll find purchasing from outside your home country could save a fortune. But beware the customs charges when it ships in! Catalogues can also offer pretty good prices, so include them in your search for good value.

This time of year is the most expensive for us all. But you can save money, spread the cost, or even put off some of that spending until it’s more affordable for you. Why not check if there are any online discount codes to help you find a good price? Sometimes if you phone up the store you’re interested in, they can be haggled down to a best market price. Of course, if you are shopping online, check the returns policy, especially for gifts. Happy shopping!

Wardrobe Must-Haves For Winter Adventures

Winter is very nearly here. The weather may be bad right now, but at least it’s not that cold yet. Still, it is the season for winter holidays so I’m looking through my wardrobe for some of my winter faves. Many people like to go away for a hot and sunny beach holiday to get them through the dark and dreary winter here. This year, I’m looking at winter holidays in the snow and ice.
If you’re about to embark on a winter adventure holiday, it’s important you’ve packed all the right wardrobe essentials. You might be heading off for skiing or snowboarding on the mountainside. Or maybe you’re after snowmobiles and dogsledding in Sweden? All of these activities can work up a sweat even in sub-zero temperatures. That’s why it’s so important to use layering to keep you warm and comfortable.

Base layers are the new big thing in running. They are thin but remarkably warm. Best of all, they let the air circulate near your skin so you don’t feel all sweaty when you’re working hard. They’re usually worn on top of a vest, or a wicking sports top. There are lots in black but if you want something a little more girly and punchy, pick an electric blue or cerise.

On top of your base layer, you’ll be wanting a good winter jumper. You could cover it up with a smart top too if you’re out and about shopping or in a cafe during the day. Pick tops or shirts that are easy to remove, and easy to carry around with you. Winter holidays are great but the indoors is really warm and the outdoors is really cold!

For activities like dogsledding, you’ll have bursts of physical work to do. But then there are the prolonged periods of cold winds blasting you. Use a ski jacket, or a good quality puffa to keep the chill off your chest. A snood could be a better idea than a scarf as there are no ends to get tangled. I love all the warm greys in knitwear this season. Tie your hair back to avoid that windswept look, but add a hat that feels secure. Cute knitwear beanies are everywhere this season. They’re just floppy enough to avoid hat hair!

Skiing is really tough on your nails and hands. Pick a good pair of ski gloves, but be sure to moisturise well before putting them on. The chafing of the harder materials can create sores if you’re already sensitive from the cold. Swap them out for sexy leather gloves in black, brown or grey. The woolly linings feel so lush!

Accessories and jewellery can be quite dangerous if you’re engaging in winter sports. Plus, the metals can freeze and burn your skin. Keep these things down to a minimum, but try fashionable wooden beads to add a splash of colour to your day outfits. Trousers are a must if you’re into winter activities. There are some great patterns out there in sportswear, but I really love the heavy winter trek pants you can find in the outdoor shops at the moment.

Have fun in the snow this winter. Adventure holidays are great for losing some weight over winter too. Wrap up warm!

Aspiring Makeup Artist?

So, you want to get better at makeup? Just about anybody can become a makeup pro, but you need to be willing to practice over and over again to get things right. Sloppy eyeliner, smudged lipstick and off colour foundation just won’t do*.



Know Your Shades
Know the shades that suit your hair colour, skin tone, and eye colour. This way, you’ll always know what suits you and how to enhance your features. You can break the rules from time to time, but you need to know what shades go with what to create the most incredible looks. Not only do you need to know what looks great on you, but what looks great on others too. To establish yourself as a makeup pro, you need to be the go-to makeup guru for all kinds of questions.

Try Out Different Tools
Different tools will give you an idea of what you should be using for what, and what gives the best finis hand result. There are brushes, sponges, and all kinds of weird and wonderful things you can use to get an amazing result. Some people even use tape to wing their eyeliner!


Learn About Different Products
Learn about the different products available so you know the main differences and what is right for who. For instance, powder and gel brow product. If someone has extremely dry skin, you’d recommend they use the gel rather than the powder. There are powder and cream foundations, powder/cream blush....just about every makeup product has a powder/cream version. There are even gels sometimes too. It all depends on your skin type, preferences, and skill level.


Get Used to Using Products/Techniques
Get used to using the products you’ve learned about, and the different techniques. All pros have a variety of methods under their belts. For instance, applying loose powder to the face doesn’t just have to be dusted over with a big brush. You can use ‘the baking method’. Press it where you want it with a cotton pad, and then leave it for a few minutes. Make sure it’s fairly thick. Then you can begin to dust away excess with a large brush, and you’ll have a much better finish!


Aim to Improve Constantly
Never feel satisfied with where you are. Aim to improve constantly and you’ll always make progress. If you’re serious about progression, you could even look into make up courses to help you develop further.


Practice on Different People
Practicing on different people allows you to play with different skin types, colours, and face shapes. This way, you can really try out the different techniques and see how they work. You will even need to change certain techniques depending on eye shape. It all comes with practice, so you need to make sure you make time for it.


Pretty soon, you’re going to be an absolute pro in all things makeup and have the appointments flooding in.

Outfits of the Week: November #2

Sorry my outfit posts haven't been quite as regular as I'd have hoped. We were due to get Superfast Fibre internet in our new house from BT on the 27th of October. We're still left without internet so it's fair to say I'm not impressed. As a result I've had to trek to my parents to try and keep a little up to date.
Monday
Dress: Primark
Shoes: Primark
 
Tuesday
Dress: Primark
Blazer: Quiz
Shoes: Primark
Watch: Michael Kors
Bracelet: Pandora

 Wednesday
Blouse: Primark
Vest Top: Forever 21
Jeans: River Island
Necklace: Primark
Boots: Primark
Thursday
Dress: New Look
Cardigan: Primark
Boots: New Look

Friday (Children in Need)
Homemade Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Costume

How To Look Amazing When You're Skint*

Every girl wants to look amazing when she goes out with her friends. The trouble is that all the latest fashion items are very expensive, and most people don’t have a lot of money. With that in mind, I wanted to share some tips and tricks that have worked well for me over the years. Contrary to what you might think, it is more than possible to look fantastic regardless of your financial situation. We all made mistakes when we were young, and most of your friends probably have a poor credit rating too. Don’t let something like that get you down when it comes to looking great and feeling confident. There is always an answer, no matter how bad your finances might appear. 


Make your clothing
Okay, so, high-street fashion is very costly these days. Girls who want to reduce their spending but still turn heads when they enter a room could look towards making their clothing. Your mom and gran probably did that when they were young. So, following in their footsteps might not be the worst thing in the world. You can buy materials cheap online, and there’s always someone who’s willing to show you how to use a sewing machine. Who knows? It could be the beginning of a new and profitable hobby. Work hard to improve your skills, and a career in fashion design might seem more feasible. 

Recycle old clothing
Most girls wouldn’t be seen dead in last year’s fashion items. However, it is possible to recycle them and turn them into something original. Maybe you could cut and combine two dresses to make something nobody has ever seen before. You’ll soon become the envy of your friends when you look amazing in clothing they can’t buy. Just be warned they might want to place orders that could keep you very busy. No matter what your wardrobe might look like now, customising your clothing and using some creativity will work well. 

Buy from a catalogue
You need to be careful about getting into too much debt because it will affect you in later life. That said, some companies do provide catalogue credit accounts for poor credit customers. If you can’t afford to purchase the clothing you want outright, that could be the ideal solution. You usually have to pay interest on top of the sale price, but the company takes that money in installments. That means you don’t need to find it all in one go. Getting all the clothing and beauty products you need is simple. You can look stunning without breaking the bank or placing too much strain on your finances. Just make sure you fully understand the rates of interest applied.

You should now have a good idea about the best ways to look amazing when you’re skint. Don’t let a silly little thing like money get in the way of your enjoyment. So long as you don’t land yourself in heaps of debt, who cares?