Mother's Day Gift Ideas

Monday, February 29, 2016
Mother's Day Gift Ideas
Mother's Day is almost here, well next weekend so if you don't have a gift then I hope my gift ideas will help! I have already posted other ideas on my blog such as a personalised canvas from Posh Canvas, my Mother's Day gift guide for all budgets and Snapfish photo gifts. Today I have a post featured gorgeous bags, pampering face masks, an amazing watch, pretty flowers and a equally spring like fragrance.

- *Talented London Large Tote (£14): I have seen these adorably cute tote bags all over social media for a while and I have always wanted one so I'm so glad I now do! The tote bags are made from 100% cotton canvas and it is part of the Cityscapes range created by Julia Gash. The range features tote bags with gorgeous illustrations from various cities such as New York, Paris, York, Yorkshire, Glasgow and many more! I wish they had a Manchester tote! The illustrations are so cute, I love the design of the tote and the fabric feels durable - the strap is cute too. I think this would be a great gift as it is cute, practical and you can use it as an alternative to a paper gift bag. I definitely know that my mum will get so much use out of it!
Mother's Day Gift Ideas
- *Annie's Closet Dotty Floral Messenger Bag (£14): I LOVE this bag, I think it is so cute and spring appropriate - it is a Cath Kidston look-a-like bag which is probably one of the reasons I like it and definitely one of the reasons why my mum will love it! The bag is a fantastic size for everyday, it has numerous zipped compartments and pockets and I think it would be a perfect gift. The fabric is durable, the adjustable strap is colourful and I just adore the overall design - it makes me wish it was spring now! Also I think the price is fantastic especially for the size and quality and I can't recommend it enough for yourself or as a gift!

- *Masque Bar Sheet Masks (£9.99 per pack): Sheet masks have been everywhere recently and I don't know about you but face masks are the one pamper product that I always go to as they are so quick and easy to use and face masks instantly make me feel pampered. The Masque Bar Green Tea Sheet Masks are great for minimising the appearance of pigmentation irregularities, dark spots and it soothes, moisturises and refreshes the skin. There are three masks per pack so they work out to be just over £3 each which isn't too bad and I've heard nothing but good things about this brand and sheet masks in general.

- *The Library of Fragrance Cherry Blossom Cologne (£15, 30ml): If you have been following my blog for a while then you will have seen this brand as I've included the colognes in gift guides and favourites posts for a while. I have the gorgeous Cherry Blossom cologne which isn't my favourite *that would be the lavender cologne* but it is a very close second. It smells so fresh, light and floral as you would expect but it isn't an old fashioned floral scent, it is light, young, sweet and refreshing - perfect for spring and it won't break the bank! They have so many gorgeous and incredibly unique fragrances to choose from, I can't recommend the brand enough. You can currently get two for £25 at Boots.
Mother's Day Gift Ideas
- *Daniel Wellington Ladies Classy St Mawes Rose Gold Plated Brown Leather Watch (£107.10): That has to be the longest product name ever! I have wanted a Daniel Wellington watch for years, I follow them on Instagram and I get a twinge of envy when I see their gorgeous instagram photos *and all the bloggers OOTD photos featuring these beautiful watches*. I have the rose gold, brown leather and Swarovski version which has to be the most stunningly beautiful yet minimal watch I have ever seen. I adore it and I have been wearing it non-stop since I received it. It came in a beautiful box as well from Joshua James Jewellery and I think it would make the most amazing and luxurious Mother's Day gift! There are so many Daniel Wellington watches to choose from and they all look incredible and they are slightly cheaper on Joshua James Jewellery.

- *Blossoming Gifts Cinder Rose Bouquet (£24): Myself and my mum love bouquets in the house all year round so a bouquet of gorgeous flowers is an easy and safe gift for my mum and I think all mums would love to receive a beautiful bouquet this Mother's Day as flowers can have such a brightening effect on a room and the occupants. I chose the vibrant Cinder Rose bouquet which features bright pink roses, subtly scented white anastasia alstroemeria and dainty gypsophila. The bouquet is so fresh and spring appropriate, it looks gorgeous on the fireplace and brightens the whole room. I adore the bright pink roses especially as they are so vivid, pretty and a bit unusual, in my opinion - also on a blogger point of view, they look so pretty in photographs #BloggerProblems - I can't switch it off, I just can't. There are so many Mother's Day flowers to choose from and in my opinion the prices are fantastic! There are also gifts on the site including cute vases, balloons, chocolates, hampers and incredible personalised gifts. I definitely have my eye on the personalised tricolore stars necklace which looks amazing *heart eyes emoji*. Also the lovely people at Blossoming Gifts have provided a discount code - you can get 33% off bouquets *only excluding the flowers by post range* using the code: BGIFTS33 and I don't think it has an end date so you should be able to use it whenever you want but the last date for delivery in time for Mother's Day is Saturday 5th by 4pm at the latest so go, go go! Also there is free standard delivery with selected bouquets and free chocolates with selected bouquets. 

Now onto my video showing closeups of the products I've featured in this post: 

What do you think of my Mother's Day gift ideas? 

Naturisimo Skin Radiance Discovery Box

Sunday, February 28, 2016
Naturisimo Skin Radiance Discovery Box
Naturisimo come out with their discovery boxes every month and every month I am impressed, especially with the amount/quality of the brands included in each box every single month. Each box is themed and this month the theme is 'skin radiance' which I'm all about especially during the dull, skin hating winter months.

The *Naturisimo Skin Radiance Discovery Box (£12.95) - the box contains eight luxury, high end, high performance skincare samples. This month the value of the box is a whopping £60! The brands included are as follows: The Organic Pharmacy, Kae, Argentum, Tata Harper, Caudalie, Elemental Herbology and Aurelia Probiotic Skincare.

- Aurelia Probiotic Skincare Miracle Cleanser (30ml): I have reviewed a few Aurelia Probiotic Skincare samples already, including this cleanser which I really like. It is a basic, creamy cleanser that feels luxurious on the skin. I'd recommend this box just because it includes an amazing sample size of this cleanser! Also it comes with an adorably packaged cloth to use with the cleanser.

- Caudalie Resveratrol Lift Firming Serum (10ml): If there's one thing I love in the beauty world, it's french skincare - the french know their skincare and Caudalie is one of the best brands, in my opinion. I adore their SOS serum and all of their bodycare products. I think this tiny bottle is so adorable but it is actually a pretty good trial size and it comes with a pipette dispenser.

- The Organic Pharmacy Lifting Serum (2ml): I haven't tried anything from this brand before but I always hear great things. I don't personally need any lifting skincare products yet but it seems like a nice product - my mum has been trying it and she likes it but it does contain micro shimmer which won't be for everyone.
Naturisimo Skin Radiance Discovery Box
- Kae Argaroyale Day Cream (2ml): Again, another brand I haven't tried or even heard of which is why these discovery boxes are fantastic. The day cream is natural and certified organic. Myself and my mum have tried this one as it is for mature and or dehydrated skin and we both like it; it absorbs quickly, it smoothes the skin instantly and it smells really nice!

- Argentum La Potion Infinie (5ml): Another french brand and I have high hopes! I haven't tried yet but it sound promising as 99.5% of the ingredients are natural. It claims to be a super hydrating, restorative anti-aging cream.

- Elemental Herbology Vital Glow Overnight Resurfacing Cream (15ml): The Elemental Herbology Cell Plumping Facial Hydrator was one of my 2015 favourites so I am always happy to try more from the brand. I think a 15ml sample tube is a fantastic sized sample for this brand as it is a slightly pricey brand. I love the texture of this cream, Elemental Herbology products always feel so luxurious! So far so good!

- Tata Harper Moisture Mask (7.5ml): Tata Harper is a much raved about brand by American bloggers and youtubers and I love the Lip and Cheek Tint I tried last year. I've only used this mask once and I have mixed opinions on it. It didn't irritate my skin, it feels nice on the skin and I love the sample pot but it didn't moisturise my skin as much as I thought it would - I think it's worth a try though.

Overall, a fantastic value box, in my opinion with some amazing brands included. I love the Aurelia Probiotic Skincare Cleanser and the Elemental Herbology Vital Glow especially but the other brands are pretty damn good too although I have mixed opinions on The Organic Pharmacy Serum and the Tata Harper Moisture Mask but I think everything in the box is well worth a go. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Have you tried any of the Naturisimo Discovery Boxes? What do you think of the contents of this box? 

Fentimans Botanically Brewed Lime & Jasmine Drink

Saturday, February 27, 2016
Fentimans Botanically Brewed Lime & Jasmine Drink
Spring is almost here which I love, especially after the gloom of winter! Spring is one of my favourite seasons as it is lighter and the sun actually appears so taking big photographs becomes so much easier and I love fresh, healthy spring time food and drink.

Fentimans have a wide range of botanically brewed drinks that are perfect for spring and summer, including their famous rose lemonade as well as victorian lemonade, dandelion and burdock, cherry cola, ginger beer and wild english elderflower drink, the latter I need to try as soon as possible as I love anything containing elderflower!

They have just brought out their latest drink, the *Fentimans Sparkling Lime and Jasmine Botanical Drink (275ml) which contains lime flower and herbal extracts as well as juniper berries, ginger root, hyssop, lime juice and jasmine flowers. It is 100% natural and it will be available from the 1st March.

I personally don't drink alcohol, which comes as a shock to most people as I'm in my early twenties and for people my age there is a drinking culture but I'm not embarrassed or unusual for not wanting to be part of that. Don't get me wrong, I'm not part of a modern temperance movement, I just don't want to drink. The Fentimans drinks are marketed as a 'credible alternative to alcohol', which I'm all for.

The new addition to the already popular range is something I probably wouldn't have necessarily pickup myself but I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to try it as it's gorgeous! It is incredibly refreshing, sweet but not overly so, citrusy and complex. The ginger comes through strongly, in my opinion and the floral ingredients are very subdued; therefore it does remind me of ginger beer. I think this is the perfect drink for the spring and summer months, it will be a necessity on a warm summers day! Also I LOVE the packaging and branding. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Have you tried any of the Fentimans drinks? What do you think of this new addition to the range? 

Mother's Day: Posh Canvas

Friday, February 26, 2016
Mother's Day is almost here and I think some of the most valuable and special presents you can give are personalised gifts. I love giving and also receiving personalised gifts and I know my mum does too so when Posh Canvas asked if I wanted to review one of their canvases, I couldn't say no.

I chose the *Posh Canvas House and Heart Personalised Family Canvas (£25) in the grey and white colour scheme but if you don't like this one, there are two other colour options. The canvas size I chose is A4 but again there are numerous sizes to choose from.

The canvas arrived very quickly and I was surprised at the quality - the canvas feels very durable and sturdy which I wasn't fully expecting especially as I haven't ever ordered anything like this before - I expected it to be fairly flimsy and thinner. I love the design, it is minimal *which you know I love* and I love the layout. I think my mum will absolutely love this canvas when she opens it on Mother's Day as she won't be expecting anything like this. The canvas will look great in our kitchen or hallway, particularly as it is quite neutral and simple so it matches our decor.

Overall, I'm really happy with the canvas and I think it would make such an amazing and memorable gift for Mother's Day, birthdays or anniversaries. The quality is fantastic and I love the design. There are lots of other canvases to choose from and I also really liked the family tree style canvas available on the website. The canvas doesn't have a hanging point on the back *whatever it's called* but you could buy one or the canvas would love great on a bookshelf or sideboard too. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

What do you think of this canvas? Will you be giving any personalised gifts this Mother's Day? 

Turbliss Bioactive Peat Face Mask

Thursday, February 25, 2016
Turbliss Bioactive Peat Face Mask
When it comes to pamper nights, there are a few products that are so quick and easy pampering products that make me feel relaxed and that help me unwind and one of them is a face mask. I love the Bioderma soothing mask and the Caudalie detox mask so I was excited when I received a new mask!

I have the *Turbliss Bioactive Peat Mask (£16, 60ml) which is composed of 100% pure therapeutic peat that restores elasticity, helps problematic skin, alleviates acne, eczema and psoriasis and tones the skin. The mask can also be used on the hair and body, it's suitable for vegans and it is handmade.

I thought the mask would have a strong earthy scent but it doesn't really have a scent at all. It looks a little unusual as it is a thick, dark mud mask in appearance - it doesn't look that appealing but I was excited to give it a go as the claims are pretty amazing!

The one point about this mask that is, unlike every other face mask, you can't let this one dry on the skin which is one of the main physical factors that show face masks are working/absorbing. I've been using the mask on my t-zone as that is the more problematic area of my skin *besides the eczema over my eyes which can be awful!* and while it is a bit annoying keeping the mask from drying on the skin, I think it does help my skin.

I have only been using the once a week so I don't think I've noticed nearly are many positive as I would have done if I'd used it more frequently. I do notice that when I use the mask, my skin is smoother and deeply cleansed. I don't have eczema on my t-zone but I will have to try this mask on the more sensitive areas of my skin to see if there is any effect on my eczema. Overall rating: ★★★☆☆, 3/5.

Here's my Love Lula wish list:
Have you tried anything from this brand? What do you think of natural skincare? 

Mother's Day Gift Guide For All Budgets

Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Mother's Day Gift Guide For All Budgets

Up to £10
Mother's Day is almost here *6th March* and as always I have a gift guide to help you choose the perfect gift for your mum, grandma or guardian. This time round I have split up the gifts by the price range. This first selection is all about gifts on a budget!

Tea Lights  -  Travel Card Holder  -  Colouring Book  -  Mug  -  Set Of Mini Tins -  Flowers  -  Biscuits  -  Lush Bath Bomb

Mother's Day Gift Guide For All Budgets
Between £20 to £50 
The next price range is between £20 to £50 which contains some of my favourite products. I know my mum would love everything in this section...and I would too!

Cook Book  -  Watch  -  Cake Tins  -  Teacup  -  Luxury Body Set  -  Scarf  -  Neom Set  -  Bag  -  Cook Book

Mother's Day Gift Guide For All Budgets
Up to £50+
The final selection is all about luxury and very expensive gifts that I'm sure every mum will love! This selection also contains a few gifts that I would personally LOVE to receive, especially the Ugg slippers, Lush gift set and L'Occitane set!

Dressing Gown  -  Shirt  -  Makeup Bag  -  Handbag  -  Lush Set  -  L'Occitane Set  -  Slippers

What do you think of my mother's day gift guide? 

Chanel Healthy Glow Foundation No.20

Monday, February 22, 2016
Chanel Healthy Glow Foundation No.20
Chanel is a brand that I haven't tried much from, I have a gloss, lipstick and one of their Healthy Glow Multi Colour Compacts which is a highlight, bronzer and blush and it's gorgeous. I was so excited *I may have squealed* when this package arrived from the super lovely people at House of Fraser.

I have the new *Chanel Les Beige Healthy Glow Foundation (£36, 30ml) in the shade No. 20 which I believe is the lightest shade apart from a pink toned shade. The foundation contains SPF 25/PA++ which is fantastic for me as I always forget to apply a separate SPF. It claims to create a radiant healthy glow that lasts; additionally it contains botanical extracts and a derivative of hyaluronic acid which is a fantastic ingredient for hydrating the skin.

As with all Chanel products, the packaging is gorgeously minimal yet luxurious. The bottle is quite compact so in that respect it would be good for travelling but the bottle is still made of frosted glass. One big plus about the packaging of this foundation is the pump dispenser it has *praise the makeup gods, well the people at Chanel*.

I haven't used a Chanel foundation before so I didn't know which shade to choose but as I'm so pale, I always choose the lightest shade, unless it is pink toned as I really don't want to emphasise the pink tones my skin already has. In the bottle shade No.20 looks a little too dark but when applied and blended it matches me really well but sadly it does oxidise very slightly on me - I would say that overall it's half a shade off.

The foundation comes with a small booklet and in it, it suggests to apply the foundation with fingertips which is how I applied it the first time I used it. It has a creamy, smooth texture so it applies like a dream and when blended with fingers or a sponge it looks very skin-like. It has a rose scent to it which some may not like and it has light coverage but it is slightly buildable - it covers pores really well but it's less effective for covering redness.
Chanel Healthy Glow Foundation No.20
Lipstick: Clinique Colour Pop Lipstick in Nude Pop - Eyeshadow: Too Faced Bon Bon Palette
The finish of the foundation is dewy and radiant so I do powder slightly but even though it looks dewy and skin-like, the longevity is surprising! The foundation lasts pretty much all day on me and the best part is when it comes to photographs *I haven't tried photographing with flash so I don't know if there is flashback* but in photographs this foundation makes my skin on the whole look dewy and almost airbrushed - apart from the patches of eczema near my ears where it didn't look fantastic but that's eczema for you!

Overall, if you have normal to dry skin then I think this is the Chanel foundation for you! It has a gorgeous finish, even prettier packaging *with a pump!*, surprisingly good longevity and it evens out the skin tone. However, if you have slightly oily skin then I'd avoid this one; also if you like heavy or even medium coverage then this isn't for you either. I only wish the foundation was half a shade lighter then it would be perfect for my super pale, ghostly skin. If you can try this foundation out at a Chanel counter at House of Fraser or if you can get a sample then I'd highly recommend doing so! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Have you tried this foundation or any from Chanel?

Mother's Day: Snapfish Gifts

Saturday, February 20, 2016
Personalised gifts are some of the nicest gifts you can give and receive, in my opinion. If you have been following my blog for a while then you will have seen the brand Snapfish before as I have been lucky enough to work with them a few times and I have bought some items myself from them over the past year or so. I cannot recommend Snapfish by HP enough as the products always turn out so well, everyone always loves their personalised/photo gifts and the process of creating memorable gifts is so easy.

Today's post is all about Mother's Day and the gifts I have made for my mum this Mother's Day via Snapfish. There are lots of gifts to choose from including prints, posters, magnets, mugs, cards and many many more. I have previous reviewed their Acrylic Prints and the Photo Calendars and Christmas Cards, all of which were loved by the recipients. This time round I chose:

- *Snapfish Photograph Notebooks (£5.99 each): I am a massive stationery lover and I can't get enough of notebooks and my mum is the same, we use them almost everyday for notes and lists. I made two for her, one with photos of myself and my sister as teeny tiny babies which she can use at home and another with mostly holiday photos that she can keep in her bag and use at work. The photos turned out really well, even the older, more blurry photographs I used. I think photo notebooks are a fantastic and special but also practical gift for Mother's Day.

- *Snapfish Photograph Flipbook (£5.99): I chose the 6" x 4" soft flay lay custom cover photo book which includes 20 photos. I think the price is amazing and the photo book turned out better than I was expecting. The photos are clear, vivid and it is quite compact too so it would be great if you didn't have a lot of space for large photo albums. It's a flip book style so the pages are thicker than normal and it's such a nice little gift that I'm sure any mum, grandma or guardian would love. I filled this one with photos of myself and my sister growing up.

- *Snapfish Photograph Acrylic Keyring (£2.99): I didn't know what else to get as we already have wall prints and other photo gifts so I chose a cute little keyring as she doesn't actually have one. It is acrylic and the photo appears on both sides of the keyring. I chose a photo of myself, my sister and my mum in Centre Parks, as we always used to go there on holiday.

Heather Nixon - Of Beauty and Nothingness

I did also order a personalised photo card for Mother's Day but there was an issue so I had to re-order and I didn't have time to photograph it - as a way of saying sorry, Snapfish gave me credit to order 50 free photos which is fantastic as that's another little gift for my mum which we can be put in our holiday photograph album. You can check out the Snapfish Twitter or Facebook for gift ideas.

Lastly, I thought I would share some baby photographs of me as I don't think I've done anything like that on my blog before and I was a pretty cute baby/toddler if I do say so all went downhill from there!

What do you think of the Snapfish gifts I chose? Have you ordered from Snapfish by HP before? 

Balance Active Formula Spray Body Lotions

Friday, February 19, 2016
Balance Active Formula Spray Body Lotions
During the winter, moisturising your skin is so important but it's also the time when I am at my laziest because I don't want to be stood freezing in the bathroom waiting for my body lotion to dry so I have been skipping that step...oops! Spray body lotions seem to be the lazy girls answer and I have tried the Vaseline ones but they didn't absorb as quickly as I thought they would so I ended up giving them away.

I was sent the new *Balance Active Formula Spray Body Lotions (£5.49 each, 200ml) and I have both of them - the hydrating one and the nourishing one. They are paraben and phthalate free and they claim to be non-greasy and fast absorbing.

Let's start with my favourite of the two, the *Balance Active Formula Hydrating Spray Body Lotion with contains hyaluronic acid and coconut oil, both of which are amazing for moisturising the skin. The lotion does have a light coconut scent which I love, it feels very lightweight on the skin and it does absorb really quickly! It is non-greasy, unless you use a tonne of lotion and it doesn't irritate my skin. It leaves my skin so smooth, soft and moisturised in the shortest amount of time possible.

The second version is the *Balance Active Formula Nourishing Spray Body Lotion which contains anti-aging SYN-AKE peptide and argan oil. This may sound odd considering there isn't any orange or chocolate in this product but it smells like a Terry's chocolate orange to me! I do like the scent but not as much as the coconut one. It too absorbs quickly, leaves my skin smooth and moisturised and it doesn't leave a greasy residue.

Overall, these spray body lotions are what I hoped the Vaseline spray and go lotions would be but weren't. They are definitely fast absorbing but they are really moisturising and smoothing too. My only problem is that when spraying, the lotion can go everywhere but other than that they are the lazy girls dream product, especially during the freezing winter months! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Have you tried any spray body lotions? Have you tried anything from Balance Active Formula? 

Polaroid Sunglasses ft. Discounted Sunglasses

Thursday, February 18, 2016
Polaroid Sunglasses ft. Discounted Sunglasses
I was never really a sunglasses kind of girl, I didn't think they suited me but since trying out different styles of glasses from Firmoo and I won a pair of Marc Jacobs sunglasses, I've decided that wayfarer style glasses and sunglasses suit me the most - thankfully as sunglasses are so important to prevent wrinkles. Priorities.

I chose the *Polaroid Premium X8408 Sunglasses (£42, RRP £90) in the Black/Grey AR Polarized version. They came in a compact and simple case so it would be great for travelling as it isn't massive like most sunglasses cases. The sunglasses contain ultrasight lenses which provide 100% UV protection and reduces harmful glare.

In my opinion the sunglasses shape is a mix between a cat eye shape and a classic wayfarer shape, as they aren't as rounded or pointed at the top as cat eye sunglasses but they also aren't as boxy as wayfarer style sunglasses. I love the shape, I think they suit my face shape and they fit really well which is surprising as glasses and sunglasses usually look really big on me. They feel relatively lightweight but durable and sturdy. Check out my instagram for a photo of how they look on - heathernixon4.

Overall, I'm loving these sunglasses and I know I will get a lot of use out of them in the spring/summer, even in England and especially while driving. Hopefully we are going on a cruise again this summer for my sisters 21st birthday so fingers crossed I'll get to wear these even more! Here's my mini wish list from Discounted Sunglasses - they have an amazing range of designer sunglasses at amazing prices:

Have you bought any sunglasses from Discounted Sunglasses? What do you think of the pair I chose? 

Romwe Spring Wish List

Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Romwe Spring Wish List
Spring begins next month and I cannot wait, it's one of my favourite seasons as it is still a bit chilly so I can dress as if it is early autumn but it is lighter which is amazing for blog photos! With each new season I want a wardrobe change and spring is no different. Here's my winter/spring wish list from Romwe.

Pink Coat  -  Check Scarf  -  Cactus Raglan Tee  -  Stripe Tee  -  Tan Ankle Boots  -  Teddy Coat

I love grey tones, blush pink and brighter shades for spring and all of these items are SO gorgeous, I want all of them! Also if you know me at all then you know that I have a slight obsession with jumpers/sweater - there are at least 10 of them that I need from Romwe!

What do you think of my winter/spring wish list? Have you bought anything from Romwe? 

Digital Detox Experience

Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Digital Detox Experience
As with most people my age, I am pretty much obsessed *some may say addicted* to social media and generally just being online and it is a by product of the progress and commercialisation of technology which I don't think is a bad thing but it has lead to a nation of social media junkies, of which I am definitely one. Also as I am a blogger and freelance writer, I spend even more of my time online and on social media because of I have to...and because I want to.

Last week, I took part in a digital detox whereby each day there was a new challenge and the aim is to reduce the time spent online and to live in the real world rather than a world of likes, page views, hits and general over stimulation. I have mentioned in a previous post about how at night, I am always on my phone, iPad or iPod which has definitely been affecting my sleep pattern and quality of sleep because my brain always needs to be connected and scrolling, constantly scrolling.

So I embarked on this digital detox with a lot of trepidation and like a parent leaving their child at school for the first time, I didn't know what to expect, I didn't know if I could deal with it and I didn't know what I would do with my time. Would the internet miss me? What would I miss if I didn't check social media or my emails every half an hour? Would my blog views drop if I'm not constantly online? The latter did happen but overall it's been a enlightening and positive experience, even though it was very difficult!

I was kindly sent a few products to help with the digital detox including:
  • Newgate Covent Alarm Clock 
  • Colouring Pencils
  • Secret Garden Adult Colouring Book
  • Notebooks
  • How To Connect With Nature By Trisan Gooley

Day One: Turn off your phone alarm and turn on your alarm clock
This wasn't a difficult first step as I don't use my phone alarm anyway, my body just always wakes up at the right time pretty much everyday - I have no idea why, maybe I'm a freak of nature! Also the Newgate alarm clock was a much nicer alarm clock compared to my cheap one from Ikea; it also fits in my with minimal, natural toned bedroom really well - I love the design! The alarm noise is quite loud and it was a bit of a shock, thats for sure but I have been able to stick to this task. You have to stick to each goal everyday for the whole week of the detox.

Day Two: Leave your phone/digital devices outside your bedroom when you go to sleep
I have to admit this is the challenge that I was dreading the most and I knew it would be the hardest for me to stick to and in all honesty I did cheat once because I'm just used to using my phone/iPad before I sleep - it's a habit for me and it definitely does negatively affect my sleep which I mentioned in my Wake Up Ready post. Not using my phone, iPad or iPod before I go to sleep was so difficult and I did struggle with it especially the first night as I was thinking about how much I wanted to scroll through social media *especially Pinterest which I'm obsessed with recently* or how much I wanted to watch videos on Youtube or read through my blog. As I said I did cheat once, on the third day but overall I think I've done quite well and I find that I am getting to sleep quicker compared to when I use my digital devices before I go to sleep.

Day Three: Eat all of your meals in a different room to your digital devices
Assuming TV doesn't count then this one was very easy as I don't usually eat with my phone, iPod or iPad next to me most of the time anyway - unless there is a blogger chat on twitter and I've poorly timed my dinner! If TV does count then I've completely failed at this challenge!

Day Four: Remove email from your phone
I didn't remove it as then I'd have to remember all of my passwords again (as I have three email accounts) which is just a hassle so I added it to a folder on my iPhone and disabled notifications. This was quite difficult as usually throughout the day, whether I'm blogging, taking photos, baking, cleaning etc, I'm usually checking my emails *and social media* at least once every half and hour - unless I'm at a friends house, shopping or reading. As a blogger I do need to check my emails fairly often throughout the day as I am very lucky to get a lot of amazing opportunities with regards to my blog and I always want to reply as soon as I can. As with the challenge from Day Two, I did cheat a little bit but only for a few blog emails, oops! *hides under the desk*

Day Five: Leave your phone at home when you go out for the evening or for a walk 
The aim of this challenge was to be without my phone for a minimum of three hours and although I didn't go for a walk *it's damn freezing in Manchester and I didn't want spend the next few days thawing out*, I did spend most of the day away from my phone as we finished off redecorating my office. I painted, used an electric sander *and accidentally inhaled most of the dust, I probably shouldn't be allowed to use one again* and spray painted pretty much every a copper colour. When I have physical jobs like that to do then I really don't miss being away from my phone because I'm so preoccupied - I need to do this more often, although not the sanding part...that didn't go too well and my lungs won't thank me for it either.

Day Six: Remove all social media apps from your phone 
Again, I didn't do this because I don't remember half of the passwords, so I added them to the folder with my emails and disabled notifications. The temptation to check social media and my email is so strong, I didn't think it would be quite as difficult as it has been. Although I have to admit that disabling notifications really helped, it made me stop checking my phone every five minutes so I think I will definitely disable most of my social media notifications from now on, but not twitter, I love twitter too much to do that!

Day Seven: Spend the day with loved ones without the distraction of your phone
After the whole week of slowly weaning myself from social media, emails and my phone in general, this last day wasn't as horrendous as I thought it would be in the beginning. Sure, I did still want to check social media, my blog and my emails but it wasn't that difficult. After an awful driving practice in which I cried for about an hour, I watched the six nations match *are rugby games called games or matches? You can tell I know everything about the sports* with my dad and set to work on my colouring book which has to be the prettiest colouring book ever!

Overall, it has been a difficult process and I did cheat a few times but on the whole I have done so much better than I thought I would - to be honest, I didn't think I'd get past day two! While I did miss social media, my emails and the internet in general, I didn't realise until now just how much of my time it consumed - without the internet for most of the days, I found myself with so much time on my hands and the days seemed so much longer. I won't be sticking to most of these challenges in the future but what I will be taking away from this experience is that disabling notifications from my phone is amazing and it stops me from checking my phone constantly, having a day without the internet is sometimes a very, very good thing and not having my digital devices near me before bed can help, to some extent, with my sleep quality. For the latter point, I will be keeping my phone, iPod and iPad in the office a couple of nights a week and who knows, it might be a permanent daily task.

For more information on digital detoxes, retreats and facts, definitely check out the Time To Log Off website.

Have you ever taken part in a digital detox? Are you a social media addict like me? Could you be without your phone for a whole day? 

Winter OOTD Ft. Pertz Leggings

Monday, February 15, 2016
Winter OOTD Ft. Pertz Leggings
Firstly, let's address the obvious - I'm so pale, I'm basically transparent! This must be what voldemort looks like in a dress *cries*. Anyway, for the past few months, I have been wearing leggings constantly which would have been unthinkable a year or so ago as I was a jeans kind of girl through and through. Leggings are SO much more comfortable and I have worn out the cheap Primark and Newlook leggings I have so when this delivery arrived, I was interested to give them a go.

I have the *Pertz Shapewear Leggings (Small, £45) which are the capri length as I am teeny tiny! The leggings are made from an Italian stretch fabric and they claim to retain their shape time and time again which is a big claim and one of the points I am always let down by with leggings as most seem to sag and stretch after a couple of washes. Mine have only been washed a handful of times and they seem to have retained their shape really well but I will have to see with time.

Dress: Asos
Jacket: Promod
Scarf: H&M
Boots: Asos
Leggings: *Pertz Leggings 

I personally love this outfit, it is cosy, warm and very comfy thanks to the massive scarf, loose jumper dress and super stretchy, smooth leggings. The leggings fit me well, the length is perfect, they stretch a lot so food babies aren't a problem and they seem to suck me in a bit. The leggings don't bunch up at my knees, they don't slip down and they look great with so many outfits. The one feature of the leggings that I'm not so sure about is the finish as they are a bit shiny so they look like yoga/exercise leggings rather than the leggings I have been wearing previously and because of this they do make a rustling noise when my clothes move against them which is a bit annoying. If they had a matte finish then they would be the most perfect leggings ever!

Have you tried any of the leggings from Pertz? What do you think of my winter OOTD? 

*these photos were taken a week or so ago and since then I did cut a lot of my hair off myself - new hair photo coming soon, when my eczema flareup has gone and I don't look so awful!*

Doodle a Poodle?

Saturday, February 13, 2016
Doodle a Poodle - Adult Colouring Books
In 2015 adult colouring books seemed to appear out of nowhere and became the 'it' relaxation product and I have always wanted to get one but I didn't know which to buy as there are quite a few. I was very kindly sent two doodle books from Michael O'Mara Books and I was excited to give them a go!

They are both quite unique as it isn't just a colouring book but it shows you different techniques to use to add texture/dimension to the pre/half drawn illustrations or to replicate the illustrations shown. Also unlike traditional colouring books, this one encourages creativity rather than just colouring in patterns. I love the names of both books, they are cute, fun and so colourful.

- *Doodle a Poodle Book (£7.99): First up, my favourite of the two, the Doodle a Poodle book which contains cute and unique illustrations of various dog breeds for you to colour in, finish off and replicate as you want - either using the techniques shown in the beginning of the book or however you want. The chihuahua, corgi and dachshund pages are my favourite. It would make a great gift for dog lovers and doodlers alike!

- *Colour a Cat (£7.99): This is a bit of a controvertible opinion but I don't actually like cats, probably because my granddads cat was such a grump and always scratched everyone but I think this book will appeal to so many of my friends and fellow bloggers! As with the previous book, the illustrations are created by Hannah Rollings and they are so cute. The american shorthair, persian and rag doll are my favourite pages in the book. A perfect addition to a cat lovers home!

Overall, I love both of the books and I have found it to be quite a relaxing process, especially as I am currently doing a digital detox. The size of the books is great too as they aren't tiny. I love the illustrations and the design of the books but try as I might I still cannot draw but it is a fun and almost calming process. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Here's my not so mini wish list:

Have you bought any adult colourings books? Have you tried either of these? 

The Most Unique Fragrances Ever?

Friday, February 12, 2016
Pegasus Perfume Samples
Perfume is one of my favourite things to try out, I have quite a large collection and I'm always looking for more so when a brand comes along that I haven't heard of before, I'm intrigued instantly. Aura-Soma Pegasus Perfumes are so unique, they are made with only natural and organic essential oils which is something I haven't really come across before.

I was kindly sent samples of the whole range of eight perfumes and unlike other brands, these fragrances don't have names as such but they have numbers - Perfume 11, Perfume 30 etc which again is such a unique aspect of the brand. Each full size bottle, 50ml, is £85.

- *Perfume 1: Notes of lemon, bergamot, neroli, rose and vetiver
All of the sample vials are spray bottles which are so handy and so convenient. This fragrance is absolutely gorgeous and right up my street! It is sweet and floral but rich and musky too - it is like something I have but I can't put my finger on it. It's such a deep but still feminine fragrance that I adore. It's definitely my favourite from the range! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

- *Perfume 30: Notes of Bergamot, Olibanum, Oudh, Jasmine, Patchouli, Cedarwood, Amber, Vanilla, Saffron, Vetiver and Musk
This perfume is very different to the previous one, it is very musky, musty and masculine but with a hint of candy, sugary powdery sweetness. It is such an unusual fragrance and I don't think I've ever smelt anything like it before. It reminds me of sweets, maybe parma violets, from my childhood mixed with a mens aftershave. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- *Perfume 39: Notes of Bergamot, Lemon, Geranium, Black Pepper, Nutmeg, Ylang Ylang, Vanilla and Cedarwood
Another unusual fragrance, can you see a theme with this brand, it is sweet, floral and very fresh - it would be perfect for spring! I adore the floral notes in this perfume, it makes me want spring to be here now. I think it would be a perfect daytime fragrance for so many ages. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- *Perfume 44: Notes of Orris, Cedar Wood, Violet and Precious Woods
I am a bit torn with this fragrance as on the one hand I love the woody and floral notes which are so evocative and complex but I also think for someone my age it would be a little old fashioned or too musky. It is extremely unusual and again I haven't ever come across anything that smells like this before! Overall rating: ★★★☆☆, 3/5. 

- *Perfume 56: Notes of Nutmeg, Violet, Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Powder Notes, Sandalwood, Amber and Musk
I adore the complex and extremely unusual nature of these fragrances and this one is no exception! It smells warm, sweet and very clean - like soap, to me. Unusually the soapy, powdery, floral notes are quite warm, if that makes sense - it smells like a deep and warming fragrance which would again be great for spring. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- *Perfume 58: Notes of Bergamot, Lime, Geranium, Basil, Lavender, Black Pepper, Rose, Sandalwood and Vetivert
Yet another beautiful floral fragrance! The rose and lavender come through the most on my skin which I LOVE as they are two of my favourite notes ever *along with patchouli and neroli*. It smells sweet, floral and feminine and perfect for spring/summer. Due to the lavender it is quite a relaxing and calming scent. I think this one is my second favourite after Perfume 11. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

- *Perfume 75: Notes of Orange, Jasmine, Neroli, Patchouli and Vanilla
I don't think I've tried a fragrance with a combination like this, especially not with orange, neroli and patchouli together! It smells masculine and rich but also sweet because of the orange and jasmine. It is such a unique fragrance and not one I would probably reach for but it is a great unisex scent, in my opinion. ★★★☆☆, 3/5. 

- *Perfume 80: Notes of Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Lily, Carnation, Cinnamon, Benzoin, Rose and Vanilla
Last but not least, a gorgeous concoction of sweet, fresh, floral notes mixed with deeper musky notes and cinnamon. From the notes, I didn't think I would like this one but I do; it is perfect for the winter/spring transition as it is light and sweet enough for spring because of the abundant floral notes but it is also quite rich and musky too. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

Overall, I am incredibly impressed by the brand as not only do they only use natural, organic essential oils but the bottle designs are gorgeous and minimal and the fragrances are some of the most unique I have ever tried! I adore Perfume 11, Perfume 58 and Perfume 80 the most but they are all so wonderfully different and enchanting as each one provokes memories and feelings from years ago even though they are new fragrances to me....if that makes any sense! 

Have you tried any of the Aura-Soma Pegasus perfumes? 

Valentines Gifts For Him

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Valentines Gifts For Him
Valentines Day is almost here and I have a few gift ideas for the men in your life. Men can be so difficult to buy for, and I always end up buying the same thing - aftershave/shower products but I hope this post will give you some new gift ideas for him! This post is not sponsored but it is a collaborative post on valentines gifts for him

- Watch: While it may seem like something of a bland gift to purchase for him on Valentine’s Day, it is actually somewhat difficult to go wrong when buying him a watch and you can be assured that you are onto something of a winner with this one. A Casio Timepiece will certainly go down well with him and it is also the perfect time to get him to stop wearing the same watch he has been wearing for the last 10 years. Try to go for one which oozes style and sophistication, it is better to view it as something of an investment in making sure that he looks his best!

- Aftershave: This present really is a no-brainer and you can be certain that you are onto a winner with this one; make sure that you take the time to visit a decent outlet and smell the different aftershaves and eau de toilettes. If you need a bit of help choosing something then make sure that you have a quick smell of his existing selection to pick out something that you will be to his taste, oh, and to yours of course!

- Books: Books, especially cooking books are safe gifts, in my opinion, they are always well received. Although horror andmore unusual books will make an interesting gift - the new collection of short stories by Stephen King will surely be a hit.

- Experience Days: Experience days are fantastic gifts, you can book a flying lesson, photo shoots, wine tasting or Go Ape which is the UK's No1 treetop adventure! With most experience days you can book it for two people so you can have the experience too. 
- Entertainment: If your partner is something of a TV or film geek, then you know that you will be able to get him to do anything for you for the rest of the year. Or, alternatively, if you are still having to endure watching episodes of the Sopranos over and over again, then this could well be a shrewd purchase. This nifty little USB device slots into the back of your TV and enables you to stream a whole host of excellent TV shows. This will also encourage him to stop wasting money on Sky TV or Virgin Media and spend the money on you instead!
- Wallet: Make sure he doesn’t have any excuses for losing his cash or, more importantly, for having a photo of you to hand! A stylish wallet really can complete the look of a man and you can be certain that he will love it just as much as you. Take the time to do some research and find something that is really special and that will stand out. Also, if you can afford it, make sure that you splurge a bit of cash on a genuine leather; it really does make such a big difference.

What do you think of these gift ideas?

Nailed London Polishes + Spring Wish List

Monday, February 08, 2016
Nailed London Polishes + Spring Wish List
I haven't tried or been impressed by anything really when it comes to polishes for quite a long time although the inner hoarder and nail polisher lover within me always need to try more so I was excited to try a brand new nail polish brand - Nailed London. The brand is exclusive to Feelunique and Harvey Nichols. For swatches check out my Instagram.

The brand is the Made in Chelsea star Rosie Fortescue's own nail polish range which consists of a massive 32 polish shade range featuring unique, chic and fashion forward shade options. The polishes are claimed to have superior longevity *something I am always let down by in 99% of polishes*, luminosity and durability.

I was very kindly sent a few of the shades along with the *Nailed London Glossy Topcoat (£7, 10ml) which I haven't fully tried yet but when I do I will update this post. I have the shades:

- *Nailed London Polish in Booty Call 018 (£7, 10ml): This is not really a shade I would go for but it is a pretty bright barbie pink and I think it would be great for spring/summer.

- *Nailed London Polish in Eye Candy 004 (£7), 10ml): Now this is my kind of shade, I love simple and neutral shades. I love this light dove grey shade and I know I will get a lot of use out of it.

- *Nailed London Polish in Crimson Crazy 009 (£7, 10ml): I do find that the shades I have aren't that unique, I have dupes of all these shades even now in my minimal collection. The shade is a rich deep purple which is perfect for this time of the year.

Overall, I haven't been as initially impressed by any polish for years as I have with these. The opacity and pigmentation are fantastic and I can very easily get away with just one coat. The shine is great as is the very quick and easy application - the formula on application and the brush remind me of the Bourjois One Second polishes but even better; it just takes one single swipe across the nail and it's painted. There is no patchiness with the shades I have and they dry quickly. I haven't tried all three shades long enough to say anything about the 'superior longevity' claim yet but I will update this post when I have tried them for a longer period of time but so far so good. Also I think the price is great! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Now, the shades are in my opinion perfect spring or winter-spring shades and I have created a spring clothing, accessories and beauty wish list inspired by the nail polish shades - all of the items featured are from Harvey Nichols.

Have you tried any of these polishes? What do you think of the shades? What do you think of my spring wish list? 

Antipodes Hero Products

Sunday, February 07, 2016
Antipodes Hero Products
Coconut oil has been the focus of so many blog posts, magazine articles and newspaper articles last year but has coconut oil had it's day - avocado oil may be the new coconut oil. Avocado oil contains essential fatty acids, antioxidants and vitamins A, E, B1, B2 and D; also it contains high levels of plant compounds called photosterols which reduce inflamation and the look of tired and stressed skin. Avocado oil can deeply moisture the skin and Antipodes have included avocado oil in it's hero products including: the Divine Face Oil, Vanilla Pod Day Cream (which I adore), Avocado Pear Night Cream and the Joyful Hand and Body Cream.

I have kindly been sent two of their hero products to test out and I was so excited to try them as I adore every single products from the brand! My skin is dry, sensitive and prone to eczema around my eyes and cheekbones which makes it really difficult to find products but Antipodes products tick all of the many boxes that I need for a product to work well for my skin.

- *Antipodes Avocado Pear Nourishing Night Cream (£33.99, 60ml): If you follow me on twitter or if you follow my blog then you will have seen this brand mentioned in quite a few reviews as well as in my favourites posts. I have very temperamental, dry and sensitive skin which is prone to eczema flareups and it is always difficult to find skincare that will not irritate my skin and that will also moisturise - I never thought I'd be able to use so many products from a brand and that my skin would LOVE them but I have found that in Antipodes.

I adore all of the products I've tried from them and I know I can use them when my skin becomes so irritated, dry and itchy and this moisturiser is no exception. The night cream has a sweet but earthy scent, similar to products you would find in Lush. It is quite thick but it applies smoothly and leaves my skin feeling so smooth, moisturised and comfortable - it relieves the look of very dry, flaky and tired skin almost instantly. I have been using this moisturiser as a day and night cream as recently, because of the weather and a minor eczema flareup, it has been very dry. I cannot recommend this night cream enough and if you also have eczema or sensitive skin then you definitely need to check out Antipodes! Overall rating: ★★★★★. 5/5.

- *Antipodes Joyful Hand and Body Cream (£28.99, 120ml): As well as skincare and a small range of makeup, Antipodes also have a small bodycare range - this is the first body product I've tried from Antipodes and as always I have very high hopes. I love the packaging, it is unusual for a body cream to come in a giant metallic pink metal tube but I love it.

The cream itself contains blackcurrant, South Pacific hibiscus flower and avocado oil. To me the cream smells heavenly and quite nostalgic as it reminds me of something from my childhood (maybe sweets of some kind). I've been using it mainly as a hand cream as I've been keeping it on my desk since I received it and I am nearly half way through already as I love it so much.

I love the scent and although the cream isn't the quickest to absorb *it doesn't take ages either*, it is incredibly moisturising. I have a patch of eczema on both hands which can look extremely dry and flaky most of the time as well as feeling so uncomfortable and tight but this cream rectifies that immediately. It's such a nice product simply to use and as with every other product I have used from Antipodes I genuinely cannot recommend it enough! Overall rating: ★★★★★. 5/5.

Have you tried anything from Antipodes? 

New in @ Busy B Stationery

Saturday, February 06, 2016
New in at Busy B Stationery
Stationery, among many other things, is a weakness of mine, I can't get enough of notebooks, sticky notes, pens, memo pads, I think you get my point. A fresh new notebook or new stationery in general makes me plan and organise better and it gets me motivated again; also beautiful new stationery is the best kind of stationery.

I have worked with the lovely people at Busy B before and I was so excited when I had the opportunity to try out a few products from their new *and amazing* fashion range even before it came out online! I did squeal slightly...ok, quite a lot when I received the package a couple of weeks ago. The photos really aren't doing the products justice, they are SO pretty with such a high quality feel and gold detailing.

- *Busy B Zip-Up Coin Purse (£12.99): How adorable is this cute coin purse! I love the simple but spring like fresh design and it is so handy. It has a travel card pocket and a zip up space for coins and or cards. I know my sister would love this as she doesn't carry a large purse as I do so I think she'll be wanting this from me! It comes in a cute box so it would make a lovely little adorable but practical gift for mothers day!

- *Busy B Page Markers (£3.99): When I'm reading a book, magazine or cookbook I always find page markers so handy to highlight interesting pages or information and these are the cutest page markers ever. They are cute and colourful and they would also be perfect for your planner/diary to mark special occasions or birthday etc. I will be using them as page markers and in my diary, especially as my diary is from Busy B too - they could also make revising and studying more interesting and colourful! The price is fantastic, in my opinion, as you get 105 sticky page parkers which are usually much more expensive or not as cute.
- *Busy B A5 Notebook (£8.99): Last but not least, my favourite item, well there are all gorgeous! I love the rich turquoise blue/green contrasting against the foil gold stripes *you know I never met a stripe I didn't like*. I think it looks so chic but playful and cute. It is lined and it has the same floral pattern as the purse inside so they would be a perfect pairing as a gift. For some reason I always thought that A5 notebooks were tiny but they aren't, they are a perfect size actually - large enough to write in properly but small enough to still be portable and travel friendly. Also it has a pocket inside that could be really useful or receipts, little notes or tickets.

Overall, the new fashion range is a fairly small collection but it is so chic and cute, it would be perfect for those who like high quality and unique stationery but with a much more reasonable price point. I always find interesting and well designed items on Busy B that I don't tend to find anywhere else. I have quite a few items from Busy B now and I cannot recommend their stationery enough! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Have you tried any stationery from Busy B? What do you think of the new fashion range?