Another Easter, another long weekend spent in the Isle of Wight. This year I went with my mum, dad, brother, sister-in-law, boyfriend and Misha the dog, which was the first time we had all been down together. The goal of the weekend was to just chill out, relax and not really do too much. Which is exactly what we did! We spent our days going on long walks on the beach and in the hills with the dog, as well as yummy pub lunches, baking cakes and exploring the nearby villages. Then we spent our evenings cooking delicious meals, drinking G&T's, playing board games and snuggling by the fire! We of course had to do the obligatory Easter egg hunt... which I won (being a complete chocolate fiend) and then spent the rest of the trip stuffing ourselves silly with chocolate. It really was the perfect getaway and super relaxing, surrounded by all my favourite people.
Wednesday, 8 April 2015
The first product doesn't really need an introduction. I am pretty sure everyone and anyone has heard about the H2O micellar water and most people who have tried it have been converted straight away. I started using this product about a year ago and have not looked back since. I used to use a cleansing milk to remove my make-up and then a eye make up remover cream for my eye make-up. However, this is so much easier and I just sweep the water over my face, eyes and lips to remove all make up in one easy step. I love how simple and quick it is to use and to go from a full face of make up to not a trace in 1 minute. I always cleanse my face with a face wash or cleanser afterwards to make sure all traces of grime and dirt are removed before applying my second favourite Bioderma product... The Sensibio Light Moisturiser.
The Sensibio Light is such a beautiful, light cream that feels like it is super nourishing but not heavy. I tend to use this moisturiser only in the morning and it is a great base for make up. It doesn't have much scent so you can tell it is good for your skin with no harsh ingredients or added chemicals. I have noticed a real improvement to my skin since using it and it gives just the right amount of moisture to keep your skin hydrated all day long.
Overall, I am totally in love Bioderma as a brand and love the simplicity of the skincare and how improving your skin is its number one aim. No fancy packaging or exotic smells- it is all about caring for your skin in a simple and dermatological way.
What are your favourite Bioderma products?
Wednesday, 1 April 2015
I have come to a realisation recently... I am a massive foodie! Nothing fills me with more joy than going out for dinner. I am obsessed with finding cool, new places to try out and I think restaurants should be like countries- there are so many to visit, why would you go to the same place twice? I think a big part of it was moving to London and realising the huge gastronomic opportunities here. You could literally eat out somewhere new every night for 5 years and still not visit all the restaurants you want to visit. From being quite a fussy eater as a child, I will now try anything and I love all different types of food and just want to try as much as possible!
This brings me to the reason of my ramblings. I have decided to set up a new blogger series on my blog: The Foodies Series. Every month I am going to bring you 3 new restaurants/bars/pop ups that I have recently visited and do a mini review on each. I am obsessed with finding new places to go and these are my favourite type of blogs to read... to be honest I wish I could be a food blogger but I just don't have the patience to take loads of professional photos of the food... all I want to do is eat it!
So, without further ado, let’s begin. To kick off my series I am going to give you my all-time Top 3 restaurant in London.
Now, this was a very hard task and I ummed and ahhhed over which to pick for a while! These are by no means the poshest or most expensive, they are just cool places with great food and a great atmosphere.
1) Miss Chu
Miss Chu is a tiny little Vietnamese street food restaurant in Shoreditch. It is actually just opposite where my boyfriend lives which is how I discovered it. The food here is incredible. Truly authentic street food which tastes delicious! It is a tiny place with enough seating for about 20 people and not somewhere to sit for ages and enjoy- it keeps the authenticity of street food- grab some delicious food, enjoy and go. I am an absolute sucker for dim sum and his place definitely provides some of the best I have tasted. I would recommend going for the selection plate of dim sum which is a mixture of all the best things and will certainly fill you up
Price: Approximately £15 per head including drinks and tip
Location: 91 Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7RA
2) Hot Box
Hot Box is a fairly new restaurant which only opened a couple of months ago in Shoreditch (again). It is the perfect place for a foodie or anyone who appreciates food and meat! The dishes are incredible- looks-wise and taste-wise. The menu is very meat orientated with beautiful slow-cooked meats which fall off the bone and melt in your mouth. Again, they have a sort of selection plate which is amazing to try a few different things and will definitely be a struggle to finish. The service here is second to none- all the staff are super friendly and attentive despite the busy fast-paced nature. We had to wait about 20 minutes for our pudding, which really isn't long, and the manager came over and apologised and said the dessert will be on the house! We didn't even realise it had been that long! Talking of desserts... it was deep fried Oreos...need I say more?
Price: Approximately £30 per head including drinks and tip
Location: 46-48 Commercial Street, London E1 6LT
Ahh my beloved Brew! Brew is an all-day and all-night eatery, however I have only ever been for Brunch. It is owned by an Australian guy and this very much comes through in the food, service and atmosphere of the café-come-restaurant. It has a really laid-back, chilled out atmosphere with cosy beds next to open-fire pits and heaters and a huge pizza oven as you enter. The food is incredible. I have had the pancakes here which are some of the best I have tasted as well as my favourite- eggs royale. They also have some amazing juices! This is my absolute favourite brunch spot- the perfect ‘Sunday morning with the girl’s’ location or hangover cure. Plus- it is literally a five minute walk from my flat! win win! They also have movie nights where they screen classic movies which is firmly on my list of things to do!
Price: Approximately £15 per head for brunch including drinks and tip
Location: 162-164 Lower Richmond Road, London, SW15 1LY, UK
So those are my top three eateries of the moment. There are so many more amazing places that I have visited recently so it was very hard to choose just three, but I will be bringing you more recommendations next month. Stay tuned!
Tuesday, 24 March 2015
So my boyfriend lives in a pretty funky place at the end of Brick Lane with the coolest roof terrace and it is now my favourite place to take outfit photos! I had a bright idea one sunny day that we should get on the roof and take some outfit photos... which is where this post came about. The view from the roof is pretty cool, nestled in between high rise office buildings with a spectacular view of The Shard. I just can't wait for sunbathing weather and I will probably be living up there!
This is a casual outfit that I wore a couple of weekends ago to go to Hawker House Street Feast. If you live in London and you haven’t been, it's a must. Three floors of the most incredible food and drink in an amazing setting with great music, what more could you want? Each floor has 4/5 pop up restaurants and bars serving some absolute gems from enchiladas to pork buns to mussel popcorn to deep friend ice cream... you could literally spend all day and night eating! Anyway, this is the outfit I wore... I bought these trousers in the Topshop sale recently and I love them. I think they are a bit of an acquired taste as I had a few motorcycle references when I wore them, but I love them! This is the perfect spring weekend outfit, with a coat thrown over for the time being until summer has well and truly arrived!
|Top- Forever 21|
Watch- Daniel Wellington
Monday, 16 March 2015
I am a total St Tropez tan convert! I have spent years testing out different tans, trying to find my favourite, but to no avail. Every tan I use either goes streaky, smells funny or just does absolutely nothing. I am pleased to say I have found my 'ONE'. St Tropez is probably the best known and most popular tanning brand out there... and now I know why. I have tried a few tans from the range and my absolute favourite is definitely the Bronzing Mousse.
The mousse is super easy to apply and the beautiful light formula means it can easily be spread all over the body with no dreaded streaks. The guide colour is quite dark but can be washed off after 4-8 hours to reveal a lovely, natural looking tan. I tend to apply mine before bed and wash it off in the morning. I have always done it this way and with other tans I would normally wake up with my white bed sheets completely brown.... however, this tan hardly rubs off at all with just a mild cream colour on my white sheets...! It also dries really quickly- there is no standing around naked waving your arms in your freezing room trying to make it dry. After washing off in the morning- it gives a really natural glow as it is a green based brown instead of orange, so there’s no risk of that obvious fake tan look. The tan tends to fade really evenly and slowly and still looks great up to 4 days later.
I am by no means a tanoholic and I actually very rarely use fake tan- only if I am going on a night out or a special occasion or I am feeling particularly crappy and feel like I need to make myself look better. I really wish I had the patience and time to tan all the time but it is just so blooming time-consuming. I am naturally very pale and I think I look 100% better and more healthy with a light, natural tan so I try to do it when I can be bothered to make the effort. Therefore, I love the ease and natural colour that the Bronzing Mousse gives. It is so much quicker than using a lotion and it doesn't matter too much if you’re a bit slap dash as it blends so well. I have also tried out the original Bronzing Lotion which I actually fell in love with first. It wasn't until the Bronzing Mousse came along that I realised the grass was even greener and I ditched the lotion. The Instant Tan from St Tropez is also really great. I had been using the Rimmel instant tan for years and years before nights out for a quick, easy fix, but this one tops the other brands once again! It is really quick and easy to apply and smells delicious so there is none of that tell-tale tan smell lingering around!
All in all, I am a St Tropez super-fan and I now can't imagine my tanning life without them! Have you tried StTropez? Which is your favourite tan?
Wednesday, 11 March 2015
However, I bought this gorgeous top the other day in the ASOS sale from Daisystreet and I thought it would go perfectly with them. It is actually a body so it gives me a rather peculiar VPL but I try to keep that hidden! I also chucked on one of my mums coats. She got this in the January sales from Warehouse and I am very tempted the steal it! I never think about looking in Warehouse but there are some really gorgeous things in there at the moment- well worth a mooch!
Have you got culottes? What do you wear them with? Answers on a postcard.
Body- Daisystreet at ASOS
Watch- Uniform Wares
Saturday, 7 March 2015
If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that I am massive foodie! I love nothing more than checking out new restaurants and pop-ups and indulging my love of food whilst making a night of it. I love the idea of mixing a meal-out with something different and anything to make 'eating out' more memorable is always a plus. Many restaurants these days are thinking of new and exciting ways to engage with their customers, I recently went to a cafe in York where you have to roll a dice to determine how much you pay for your lunch (I rolled a double 6 and got two sandwiches and two coffees for £1, so naturally, I loved it!) Therefore, when I heard about this exciting new pop-up restaurant which mixes food with entertainment, I was excited!
I love a good card game, especially when on holiday with a couple of cocktails to relax and pass the time. However, I must admit, I have never understood the complicated rules of poker- whenever someone tries to explain it to me I have drifted off into another world before they get to the end. However, I am prepared to learn for this new pop-up concept... The All In Kitchen is the world’s first 'pay-by-poker' restaurant! You literally play a game of poker to determine how much you pay for your meal! Here's how it works: First you play three hands of poker. Then, what you pay is based on how many chips you have at the end of those three hands. That could be £10, £5 or absolutely nothing! Therefore, even if your poker game fails miserably (most likely for me) you're still only paying £10 for a three course meal, normally worth about £50 a head!
The menu is also deliciously poker-themed, featuring a 'Royal Flush of King Crab Thermidor', 'Queen Scallops accompanied by Salt Baked Swede and Bacon Marmalade, '4 Of A Kind of Lamb Chops, Rump, Kidney and Shoulder With A Rosemary Jus' and even a '2 Pair of Pear Tarte Tatin, Pear Caramel and Ice Cream'. My mouth is watering just reading that! Therefore, it's not just your standard burger and chips- this is real, gourmet food! You can just go along and soak up the atmosphere and pay full price for your meal or you have the option to play to win your meal for less or completely free.... At just £10 at the most for that... you will be laughing, even if you lose!
The All-In Kitchen is now on tour and will re-appear in locations across the country so keep your eyes peeled for it opening up again near you!
Tuesday, 3 March 2015
Foundation is the one thing I can just never get right. I have gone through my whole adult life trying to find the perfect foundation/bb cream/tinted moisturiser and I have never found one that was perfect for me. I have tried product after product and I think I have found the 'one' for a month or so and then I realise it's not the right shade/consistency/formula and begin the search again. However, I am pleased to say... I think I have found 'the one'. Well... the one for winter!
I came across the Estee Lauder Perfectionist foundation after visiting the stand in House of Fraser with my mum. My mum was on the search for a new foundation and I went along to help her out. I told her how I had heard how great Double Wear Foundation is so she tested that one out. The guy on the counter was amazing and did a wonderful job at colour matching her and assessing her needs so I decided to get him to have a look at my skin too. He came to the conclusion that I needed a light foundation that was going to still give a little bit of coverage and give me a natural glow without looking like I was too 'madeup.' I had been wearing bb cream and tinted moisturiser before which didn't quite give me the coverage I need in the winter when my skin has been quite red and uneven. Therefore, the Perfectionist was the perfect foundation for me. As I said, it is light and not too heavy- giving a natural looking base and but still covering up imperfections. It is the perfect shade for me pale skin, however, come the summer I am sure I will want something a little darker and dewier. I have had so many compliments on my skin since wearing this foundation and I love that it looks really natural and like I am wearing hardly anything.
I also picked up the Double Wear Concealer which has been an absolute God-send. I use the concealer on any blemishes or imperfections as well as under my eyes to hide those nasty dark circles which seem to be ever-increasing as I get older! The consistency of the concealer is great- not too thick and doesn't leave creases under the eyes like so many other concealers. It does a great job of covering up blemishes and never goes dry or crusty.
The lovely guy at the counter also gave us both an Advanced Night Repair Serum tester to try out. So many people I know have said this is the best product on the market and has completely transformed their skin. I loved the tester so much that I have just gone back and bought the full size bottle too. I apply this at night before my normal moisturiser and I have already seen improvements in my skin. Although I have only used it for a couple of weeks and don't always remember to apply every night, I can't judge the results too much- but I am definitely loving what it has done for my skin so far!
Overall, I am a complete Estee Lauder convert and can see myself investing in many more of their products. Do you use anything from Estee Lauder? What are your favourite products?
Thursday, 26 February 2015
Last weekend I went to the beautiful city of Copenhagen for a long weekend with my boyfriend. The little weekend getaway happened to coincide with Valentines Day and our 'anniversary' so it was the perfect excuse for a romantic trip together in this stunning city.
I have wanted to go to one of the Scandinavian countries for a while and Denmark was the closest, easiest and cheapest place to get to at this time of year so we booked the flights and started planning! We managed to get the flights and accommodation pretty reasonably- staying in a lovely Air BnB place right near the city centre. We arrived in the city on Friday morning after a very early start and got straight into exploring the wonderful city. We started off the trip with a 'Free Walking Tour' to get a feel for the city and find out where everything is. I have done a number of free walking tours in various European cities and always been so impressed with them. They normally last about 3 hours and the guides are always so fun and full of life. We managed to see most of the main attractions all in one go- allowing us to decide which to revisit and get a feel for where everything was.
After the tour we headed to Torvehallerne- a funky little food market selling all the most amazing food you could think of. After drooling around all the stalls we settled on a traditional Danish cafe/stall called Hallernes Smorrebrod selling the Copenhagen speciality- Smorrebrod- which is a kind of open sandwich. These were literally incredible and an absolute treat for our tastebuds after all the walking. All washed down with a pint (or half pint in my case) or Danish beer!
We spent the rest of the day exploring the the city centre- walking around the canals and to The Little Mermaid Statue- which has been voted the second most disappointing statue in Europe. It certainly lives up to its title- definitely not worth the walk out of town for...but I'm still glad we ticked it off our list.
We then headed over to the Meatpacking District- which was a really cool place full of quirky eateries, bars and galleries. We explored a few shops and galleries before deciding it would be more fun and happening at night time so headed back to check in to our room.
After freshening up and unpacking we headed out in the Vesterbro neighbourhood on the search for some food. We came across a cool restaurant called Neighbourhood which was full of beautiful and quirky looking people. The pizzas here were amazing and bigger than anything I had ever seen and the atmosphere was really nice and chilled. The area felt like the 'Shoreditch' of Copenhagen and there were loads of cool bars around which we headed to after dinner. One we visited was called Mikeller which sold over 60 different types of beer and was hidden just under the pavements- which is apparently where all the best bars are in Copenhagen!
The next day we woke up and exchanged our valentines day presents to one another before heading out for brunch. I had some great restaurant and bar recommendations from a couple of friends who had been to Copenhagen recently so we decided to try out one of the places on the list. We went to a really cool place called Cafe Dyrehaven for the yummiest Eggs Benedict and coffee in a really cool surrounding.
After brunch we headed back to the centre where we waited for another of the walking tours. This time it was an 'alternative' walking tour of the district across the river called Christianshavn. We had heard a lot about Christianshavn and were keen to check it out and understand what it was like. To give a brief history- Christiania is a town in itself within Christianshavn, known as a 'free town'. The town was created in the 1970's when squatters moved in to redundant military buildings there and eventually built a community. Nowadays- there are about 850 residents living there completely separate to society- pretty much just a load of hippies! It is known for its cannabis trade and residents openly sell and smoke cannabis even though it is still very much illegal and there are often police raids on the town but the government seem to tolerate it. It was so interesting to hear all about the history of the place and it is impossible to describe unless you see it for yourself. As it is a living community, the residents get very funny if you take any photos inside, so I only managed to get one sneaky snap- but you have to see it to believe it. It very much felt like you were stepping back in time and almost felt like you were on a film set... it just didn't feel real. I would 100% recommend exploring it and seeing for yourself - plus there is a beautiful walk around the lakes on the outskirts of the town.
We then headed back to our apartment to get ready for our early dinner reservations. We had booked to go to a place called Pate Pate in the Meatpacking District which we had been recommended. The food was absolutely sensational and one of the best meals I have had in a long time! It was a little on the pricey side (as all things in Copenhagen are) but it was our Valentines Day meal so decided to treat ourselves.
When we were out for our meal we heard about the terrorist attack that had taken place that day! It was pretty scary to hear what had gone on and to learn that the guy was still on the lose! It did put us a little bit on edge and saddened to hear what had happened just a couple of miles from where we were!
The next day we headed to the northern neighbourhoods of Fredericksberg and Norrebro where we had heard there were some great vintage and antique shops and great cafes. However, due to the terrorist attack, many of the shops and cafes were closed as a mark of respect and the whole area felt a bit like a ghost town. On the way there we walked along the lakes and Ben decided to test out his new camera lens and did a bit of a photo shoot- much to my dismay as I was freezing cold and just wanted some breakfast!
We managed to try some of the famous Danish porridge in a tiny little home-run cafe called Grod which was known for its amazing recipes. We had a delicious dulce de leche porridge filled with seeds, nuts and fruits and some yummy granola and berries with mint tea. We then headed to Coffee Collective which is known to do the best coffee in Copenhagen! And it certainly lived up to its reputation!
We then headed back to the city centre on the search for a Danish pastry (we literally spent the whole day eating!) We headed for another cafe which I had heard did the best pastries in Copenhagen! However, we got there and realised it was the scene of the second shooting that day outside the Jewish temple! The road was filled with police and news reporters and people laying down flowers outside the temple. It was quite shocking to see and to think that the terrible act happened only a few hours before. The whole city felt very quiet that day and there was definitely a strange atmosphere.
After one last tour round the beautiful harbour we headed back to the Meatpacking District where we spent our last few hours eating a delicious burger at a tiny restaurant called Tommies Burger Joint. The food was insane here and there was such a cool atmosphere. We spent a couple of hours just hanging out and playing cards before heading over to the airport for our late night flight home.All in all, we had such an amazing weekend in Copenhagen and managed to cram so much in to the three days. There were so many great things to see and do (and eat and drink) and I would 100% recommend a visit to anyone. If anyone is heading there soon let me know- I have some great recommendations to share with you!