Monday 31 July 2017

The Story Behind The Photo #6

I was a bit stuck this time when it came to picking a photo. I have so many from our trips to places like London and Manchester but I've shared so many of them already, I also don't want all of them to just be of me and George because there are other people in my life, but I don't know who would want to be on my blog and who wouldn't! I have some really funny photos even from when I was back in school that I would love to share but I'm really conscious that people on those photos might be a bit like woah why are you putting a photo of me on your blog, so I've been struggling a bit recently with this! I thought I would pick one from the last time I went abroad, 2011, yep 6 years ago now, because it was a lovely holiday and I have some really pretty pictures from that time. 
I chose a picture of the Leper Island Spinalonga that we went to on a day trip to during our two week holiday to Greece (I went with my mum, dad and brother). At the time I probably didn't appreciate it as much as I should have, I remember it being absolutely boiling hot and I think that kind of put me in a bit of a mood. I just wanted to be in the pool all the time! I've since read a bit about the island and looking back on the photos we took, it is pretty amazing and I really would love to get the chance to go back one day. Last year when I was working because I was going up to full time I had persuaded George that we should go to Greece this summer and we would have if things had gone differently, and we'd have definitely made a trip to Spinalonga. Now when I look at the picture, I genuinely think how beautiful is it? Maybe it's just me but I think it's such a good photo. Spinalonga is basically a small island in East Crete and it's known as the Leper Island because thats where Lepers from Crete and the rest of Greece were quarantined until 1957. Lepers are people who suffered with Leprosy which is a long term infection, thats about all I know but still it's a really interesting place and I definitely think I'd take it all in a bit more if I was to go again. 

I'm in desperate need of a holiday abroad, all I've wanted to do the last few months is hop on a place and spend a few weeks just by a pool. It's been so long and I just don't think you can beat a relaxing holiday abroad. It's so needed. Maybe next year. We've been saying for years oh next year we'll finally go abroad and we just never have but I'm sure it will be worth the wait!

If we do get to go to Crete anytime soon, I'll definitely be checking out Rental Center Crete for easy car hire. I'd love to rent a car out for the day and just explore, and see what we find! They make the process so simple and it's incredible affordable!

Have you ever been to Greece? Where is your favourite place to go on holiday?

*This is a collaborative post with Rental Centre Crete

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Friday 28 July 2017

SensseGo! Mini Sonic Facial Brush Review & Giveaway*

I've really been trying to take better care of my skin over the last few months. I started with trying some new products from Newtons Labs, which have done wonders and for the last few weeks I've been putting two Sensse Beauty products to the test. The first one I'm going to talk about is the SensseGo! Mini Sonic Facial Brush (giveaway at the end of this post too!) and in a few days my review of the Sensse Hot and Cool Facial Massager will be up so check back for that soon. 
I was so excited to receive a few bits from Sensse to try out. I'd seen them on Instagram before and had always been so intrigued by their products and I've always wanted to have a Facial Brush like this as my own but have never wanted to splash out on one so this really was perfect for me.

Before I get on with my review, let me just tell you a bit more about Sensse Beauty. They sell a range of products ranging from cleansing brushes to facial massagers and more, and each product has been designed with love and care to bring out the very best in your skin. Using Smart Sonic Technology, Sensse enhance your daily routine into the ultimate sensory experience for radiant looking and super soft feeling skin.

'Feel good on the inside and look good on the outside.'

First of all, lets talk about the packaging! Isn't it so sleek? I love how simple it is and how much the brand name stands out. I love simple packaging but this is also just really pretty too I think. Aswell as looking nice, it's also really secure. I actually struggled a little bit to get into it, but when I did I could see that the Facial Brush was packed in tightly and everything was in perfect condition. The brush comes in a plastic case inside the box with a plastic covering meaning there is no chance of it getting damaged, and underneath the plastic is the instruction booklet and a USB charger. There is also a cover on the brush head so that none of the bristles get damaged which I think is brilliant.
I always wondered how these brushes worked but they are actually super simple to use and this comes with a clear instruction booklet so you know what to do every step of the way.

Settings - This has 2 intensity levels and 2 different brush heads to choose from meaning you are able to customise your routine and cleanse as you wish. The sensitive cleansing brush which is already attached, is recommended for daily cleansing and it also comes with an exfoliating brush which is recommended for use once a week. Both of these are supposed to leave you with visibly fresher, smoother and softer skin, and it's perfect for all skin types! This can be charged by plugging the charging lead into a USB port for a recommended 2 hours.

Instructions - Before using first remove any makeup you're wearing with your usual makeup remover, then wet your face and apply your usual cleanser. The facial brush can then be switched on just by pressing the button on the front, once for a low speed, twice for a higher speed. It fits your hand perfectly and all you have to do is place the brush up against your face and gently move it in circular motions being careful to avoid your eyes. Recommended use is 1 minute, and afterwards just wash your face and the brush head then leave in the box ready for it's next use.

My Thoughts - I have been so impressed with this little gadget and I genuinely do think it has made a difference to my skin. I've been suffering with some really bad hormonal spots for a while now but since using this they've really cleared up. I've found it so easy to use and it's actually really enjoyable. I've loved adding this into my skincare routine as it really doesn't take much time and requires very little effort! I tend to use the sensitive brush head just because my skin can be a little temperamental at times and I didn't want to use anything too harsh on it more than once a week. Not only has this improved my skin over the last few weeks, it's also made it feel incredibly soft! As soon as I finished using this, my skin felt amazing and even the next day it was just so soft. 
I've just loved using this and will definitely be carrying on with it. It's just such an easy thing to fit into your evening skincare routine and really does make a difference. I'd never used anything like this before but I've loved it and I think it was a brilliant one to start with. I definitely recommend having a look at the other products Sensse Beauty do aswell if you're wanting to try something like this and want something reasonably priced.

Now onto the giveaway! If you'd like to win one of these for yourself then details on how to enter are below! 
Good Luck!
Win A SENSSEGo! Mini Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush and Exfoliator #4
*Product sent for review. As always all opinions are my own and I only work with brands relevant to me and my blog.

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Thursday 27 July 2017

Off The Eaten Path - Making Snacking An Adventure*

I have an extra little post for you all today and it's about Off The Eaten Path, a new snack brand trying to bring a little flavour to our lunchtimes!

Off The Eaten Path sell a range of delicious crunchy snacks all made with real vegetables and each snack is a surprising combination of flavoursome ingredients. These new snacks provide us with a source of fibre, contain no artificial colours or preservatives, and are made from ingredients like rice, green peas, pinto beans and white beans. Each snack is then seasoned with either simple sea salt, sour cream and cracked black pepper, or caramelised onion and balsamic vinegar flavouring for a super delicious snack.
Off The Eaten path was created for free spirits and adventurers alike, those who prefer to discover the path less travelled. These snacks are perfect to tuck away as a tasty snack in your bag while out on an afternoon stroll or when enjoying an impromptu trip to the countryside. There are a range of flavours to choose from so something for everyone, including:

Sea Salt Crispy Rice & Pea Chips
Sour Cream and Cracked Black Pepper Crispy Rice & Pea Chips
Sea Salt Crunchy Pea & Pinto Bean Sticks
Caramelised Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Crunchy Pea & Pinto Bean Sticks

Not only do these snacks sound so tasty, the packaging is also amazing! The beautiful packaging reflects Off The Eaten Path's ethos and evokes a beautiful backyard garden. The packs include hand-drawn illustrations of the vegetable ingredients and colours that are so eye catching. 
If you're wanting to try some of these for yourself, they retail at £1 for individual packs and £2.25 for sharing packs. Both sizes are now available from leading retailers including Sainsbury's, WHSmith and Ocado.

*Collaborative post. As always I only work with brands I feel are relevant to my blog.

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Wednesday 26 July 2017

Urban Fruit - The Healthy Snacks You Need To Try*

Now I'm usually always about the chocolate, I have such a sweet tooth it's actually a bit of a problem, so I'm always on the lookout for healthier snacks and treats that can give me that sweet hit but not be as big on calories. I've tried various healthy snacks over the last few years, and Urban Fruit are a brand I've gone back to a few times. So when they sent me a box full of goodies to try, I was so happy, and as I'm currently trying to eat a bit better and watch my calories, they couldn't have come at a more perfect time.
Before I get onto my actual review, let me tell you a bit more about Urban Fruit. It was founded by a lady called Hayley who started off as a personal trainer and was seeing people facing the same dilemma everyday, that they all struggled to avoid unhealthy snacking between meals. She noticed this was quite a common thing for people and so decided to set herself the task of finding a solution. A solution that would make eating fruit on the move a bit more exciting and would remove refined sugar, concentrates and sulphites that you usually find in dried fruit. Eventually after hours in her kitchen, Urban Fruit began. Her idea was to pick fruit when it's at it's most pure and fresh, and then bake it, leaving us with a healthy and tasty snack that contains no nastys. It's gently baked because if you bake at low temperatures for a longer time, it retains basically all the goodness that you find in fresh fruit, oh and it means these packs are 1 of your 5 a day, perfect for people like me who struggle with getting enough fruit and veg each day.
Urban Fruit are a brand I'd seen in Supermarkets for quite a while and I'd actually tried the Smashing Strawberry pack in the past and loved it so I was so excited to try all the others flavours I was sent.

Aswell as a pack of the Smashing Strawberry, I also received a pack of Perfect Pineapple and Magnificent Mango. I think out of all of these the one I was really excited about was the pineapple as it's one of my favourite fruits. I thought if I liked this pack, it would be brilliant for me as it means I can enjoy one of my favourite fruits whenever I like and not have to worry about all the effort it takes to cut a whole one (does that make me sound really lazy 🙈) Anyway in the end I did love the pineapple pack. It was just so nice and sweet, and really filled me up. You could tell that it was just pineapple and nothing had been added to it. I will definitely be stocking up on more of this pack! The next pack I tried was the mango. I have to say out of all the different packs, these were probably my least favourite but that's only because mango wouldn't usually be my first choice of fruit anyway. They were were really nice don't get me wrong and that isn't a reflection on Urban Fruits in any way, other people have commented on a few of my pictures saying the mango is their favourite, it's just personal preference really. I'd definitely give them another go in future though. The last pack out of these three that I tried was the Strawberry. As I said I've tried this flavour before so I knew I would like it, and it was just as good as the last time. So tasty and actually just like sweets, they are that good. Even though they are small you can tell all they are is literally just strawberries. They are so moreish!
Two other packs I got sent were, Cheeky Cherry and the Ravishing Raspberry. What I love about these packs is that they are perfect for sharing, and would be brilliant to keep in your office for yourself and your work mates when you're all needing a little pick me up in the afternoon! Just a few of each of these gives you that sweet treat you sometimes need to get yourself through the day but is so much better for you than a chocolate bar. Of course you could also keep these in your bag too to just pull out a few when you need a snack or they'd be brilliant to keep at home to stop you reaching for any bad stuff. I just think these packs especially are brilliant. They both taste absolutely delicious too, though the cherry was probably my favourite. Another reason I love the cherry pack so much is because fresh cherries can be so expensive and I personally think having a few packs of these in the cupboard would be so much easier than trying to find fresh every summer and paying ridiculous prices.
Overall, I'm just so impressed with Urban Fruits and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to try out some of their delicious snacks. I really liked every single flavour and wouldn't hesitate to pick more up in future. As I've already said these are fab to keep in your handbag for when you're on the go, to keep at work, or to just snack on at home. 

If you would like to find out any more information about Urban Fruit, check out their website here and they can also be found in supermarkets Asda, Morrisons, Tesco and Sainsburys. I definitely recommend giving them a try!

Have you tried anything from Urban Fruit before? What's your favourite healthy snack?

*I was sent a selection of snacks to review. As always I only work with brands I feel are relevant to my blog

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Tuesday 25 July 2017

The Self Love Tag...

I don't do tag posts very often anymore though I used to do loads when I first started blogging! I saw this one floating around on twitter last week and knew it was one I wanted to do, the self love tag. I've not been tagged to do it but I decided to do it anyway and I'll tag 5 people at the end. The only rules are to answer every question honestly. I think posts like this are always fun to do.
1. What is something that is getting you down at the moment? - Hmm several things are always getting me down! I'd say the main thing is my anxiety at the moment as whenever I seem to be getting somewhere, something always happens to set it off again, it seems never ending this year.

2. What is something that makes you happy? - Shopping always makes me happy, at the moment I'm always looking online and finding things I want but can't afford! Also anything that involves dogs makes me happy, even just the Dogs Trust adverts make me smile!

3. Name 3 guilty pleasures - The most obvious guilty pleasure is probably my obsession with musicals. I know it probably seems so stupid to some people but I am honestly addicted to some musical soundtracks! I can quite happily just sit and listen to album after album! Another guilty pleasure is that I kind of secretly love watching wwe wrestling. If I see it's on TV I'll put it on, even though I have literally no idea who most of the people are! I just find it so interesting to watch. I can't believe I've actually just revealed that. The last one I think is that I am so intrigued by places like Auschwitz and I've watched programs on it before in the past and I'm genuinely so interested by it all. The amount of things I've read about it and videos I've watched is a bit ridiculous.

4. What is something about yourself you'd like to improve on? - Probably my confidence. I feel like I've lacked it for a good few years now and that just makes me sad. I see so many girls and blogger friends just killing it, no matter what they look like and no matter what size they are, and I always think they look amazing, and always wish I had their confidence.

5. When was the last time you belly laughed? - I know there was something last week that made me laugh for ages and ages but now I really can't remember what it was! Apart from that I'd say it was maybe during a film or maybe the office as it's the best show and makes me laugh every time.

6. What is your biggest insecurity and fear? - My biggest fear is probably people I know dying. I genuinely can't deal at the thought of something happening and me one day being by myself, I don't know how I'd cope so I'm always worrying about things like that.

7. Name a song that always cheers you up when you're down - This is a really random one but 'In Summer' from Frozen makes me smile so much! It always cheers me up whenever it randomly comes on in my spotify playlist.

8. Name 3 things you like about yourself - I think I'm quite funny, whether anyone else does or not is another thing. I always try to see the good in people no matter what. Lastly I'm a pretty good cook.

9. What is an achievement that has made you proud of yourself this year? - I'm so proud of how hard I've worked on my blog this year. I've put absolutely everything into it since the start of this year, have slowly grown my social media accounts and have been blogging 5 times a week since the start of the year. I really wasn't sure if I could keep up with that but so far I have and I'm so proud of myself for it.

10. Tell us your happiest memory - I absolutely love thinking back to mine and Georges first trip to Manchester in November 2014. It was such a special trip for so many reasons and it's become one of my favourite places now. Also so many of my happiest memories are from London of course. I honestly feel like such a different person there so I love thinking and looking back on those trips because I know how happy I was each time.

I absolutely loved doing this tag and these questions were so nice to answer as they are a bit different to other tags. I'll leave the people I'm tagging below this, but if you'd like to give this a go, feel free to copy and paste the questions!

I Tag - Kirsty, Jordanne, Katie, Zoe & Chloe!

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Monday 24 July 2017

Newtons Foot Therapy Review*

I've suffered with my feet for a good few years now. It doesn't matter what shoes I wear I always end up in a bit of pain and whenever we go away I always prepare for my feet to be seriously achy after walking round all day as for some reason they just can't take it! Because of that I always have various foot products in like scrubs and creams so when I was given the chance to receive and review some of the Newtons Foot Therapy range, I thought they'd be perfect for me!
Newtons Foot Therapy is a big trusted name in the foot care market and I'm pretty sure I've tried at least one of their products before, as I've literally tried numerous foot care products over the last few years! They specialise in long term solutions so products like their Chiropody Sponge which I'm going to talk about a bit more further on are really popular, but they also have a few products which are brilliant for weekly use like their Intensive Foot Cream and Scrubs all formulated with refreshing ingredients for soft and silky feeling feet! I was sent three products to try, a polishing foot scrub, a deodorant foot cream and a chiropody sponge.

Polishing Foot Scrub 

Lets start with the Foot Scrub as this is the one I was the most excited about. I love a good scrub for my feet, and have used various scrubs in the past. I just love the feeling of it being rubbed into my skin and my skin always feels so soft afterwards. This scrub is honestly one of, if not the best I've ever used. I find with a lot of scrubs, particularly the foot scrubs I've used before, they can be really drying and it can just be like rubbing sand into your feet, not a good feeling and a nightmare to get off! But this seemed to have a little bit of moisture in, so it was therefore really enjoyable to use, rubbed in well and got rid of any dry and hard skin. This contains a blend of exfoliating Natural Pumice, Antibacterial Tea Tree and Cooling Spearmint and Methol, so it's brilliant for leaving your feet soft, smooth and revitalised and it really does smell nice which is always a bonus! I do love a good foot rub, especially a scrub one (not that George particuarly loves giving them) but he also agreed this is one of the best scrubs he's ever used. I'll definitely be stocking up on this in the future.

Charcoal Deodorant Foot Cream 

 Now onto the foot cream which I was so intrigued by! This foot cream is a fast absorbing, non-greasy, anti-bacterial formula and it contains ultra-purifying activated charcoal which eliminates foot odour for 24 hour freshness. There seems to be a big surge in beauty and skincare products containing charcoal now and it's one that actually seems really good. This has been really lovely to use and it's definitely become one of my new favourite foot creams, I say that as if I have a lot but as I said I do love a good foot rub and even George agreed this has been really nice to use. It just absorbs really well and my feet don't feel all slippery after using it, it just soaks in and even though my feet feel really nice after using it they don't feel greasy in any way. This has just made my feet feel so soft and moisturised and I'm so glad I've still got so much of it left to use!

Newtons Chiropody Sponge 

 When I first opened up the package and saw this, I had literally no idea what it was! I'd never seen anything like it before, and I'd definitely never tried anything like it so this was definitely the one out of all three that I couldn't wait to try. This is supposed to be good for hard skin, corns and calluses, and it's really easy to use. All I had to do was run it under water, add some soap to it and then rub on the bottom of my feet. As it says on the pack, you can genuinely see it working! Any hard skin felt soft almost instantly and I could visibly tell it had done what it was supposed to do. The brilliant thing about this is that it can just then be rinsed under water and placed back in the box ready to be used again. It's quite a tough sponge so didn't break down in any way and is more than perfect to be used again. My feet really did feel so soft after using this and I love that I gave it a go because this isn't something I would ever think to pick up.
This whole range has just been brilliant to use. After trying various foot scrubs and creams over the past few years, to soothe my sore and aching feet after a big trip or wearing uncomfortable shoes, I really wish I'd discovered these products sooner. The scrub is probably the best I've ever used and the cream is just so good. I couldn't recommend these enough. I'll definitely be buying from Newtons Foot Therapy in the future as I've been so impressed and they are all also really reasonably priced, ranging from £2-£3. If you'd like to try these products and think they'd be perfect for you, you can find them in a variety of stores including Bodycare and Savers and they are also available online at Fragrance Direct.

Have you ever tried anything from Newtons Foot Therapy before?

*I was sent a selection of products to review, as always I only work with brands I feel are relevant to me and my blog

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Friday 21 July 2017

Renting - My Experience, My Tips & Pros & Cons

Renting your first home is such a minefield! I've been wanting to talk about this on my blog for a while but I've never been sure how to go about it. Whilst I'm aware I really don't know everything, I do have a few tips I'd love to share and they might be basic, but this is exactly what I could have done with a few years ago. I thought instead of going right back to the beginning I'm going to just talk about the flat we're in now, how it's been for us renting, my tips to help you if you're wanting to move out and also the pros and cons. Just to give you a bit of a back story I first moved out of my family home when I was 18 to go to university and this is also when George and I moved in together. It was a tiny flat in student accommodation but for us it was a lovely, little first home. After a year we then found the flat we're in now and we've been here ever since! I'm not sure if this is something many people will be particularly interested in but I know I would have loved a post like this when we were looking for somewhere to live, so I hope it maybe helps one person.

My Experience

So this flat we're in now wasn't the place we originally went for. We were always keen on going straight in for a house, renting that for a while and then hopefully saving for a mortgage. Unfortunately things don't always go to plan and the house we first went for, fell through. It took me quite a long time to get over that house as it really was such a lovely home but we soon found the flat we're in now. I'm not going to lie, I really struggled when I first moved here. It was a mixture of things I think. Moving back from Leicester, not having a job at the time, all sorts of family issues, money issues and having to basically settle in by myself as George couldn't get much time off work. For days I remember crying wanting to look for somewhere else straight away but obviously we couldn't really do that. I just had to look at the positives. Since then I've been doing everything I can to make it more of a proper home. Over the last few years we've added things in slowly and now some rooms are perfect and just so cosy. I really will be sad to leave this place when we do eventually move out as now it does feel like ours. In terms of the actual renting which is the whole point of this post, again we don't have the best estate agents, they were extremely slow throughout the whole process, from viewing the property, passing on information regarding moving in dates, getting the keys etc. And even now if we need to get in touch with them, it can take days and days for us to get hold of someone. Regardless of that though, we do have a really good landlord. He just leaves us to it which makes this place feel like more of a home. He's not checking on us all the time, inspecting it and he's never made me feel like he could kick us out at a moments notice (one of my biggest concerns with renting). He's quick to come round and help if there are any issues and has always been fast to fix anything and find solutions. To be honest he's a pretty brilliant landlord and I know some people don't always get that lucky when renting. I definitely have days where I wish we had a bigger place and I long for the days we finally have a garden but for now, it's really alright. We're quite lucky in terms of rent and our landlord has always been laidback about us putting our on stamp on the place. I do think everything worked out okay in the end for us with this place.

My Tips

Don't Rush Into Anything - As much as you might be desperate to move out of your parents or wherever it is you are currently, don't rush it! We were really keen to find something asap and as I mentioned we did and it fell through. It was the first place we viewed and it all went wrong. Obviously if you do find somewhere you love, by all means go for it, but just be prepared that it's not always as straight forward as it seems and it's definitely worth looking around for a bit first and being 100% sure.

Communicate with your Landlord - As I said our landlord basically leaves us to it most of the time but it's really important if you do have any questions or worries, to let them know. If something has broken, get in touch. It's much better they know and can do something about it rather than finding out at the end of your tenancy and needing to fix it then. Things happen and as long as you're honest and tell them when there is an issue, they really won't mind you getting in touch. At the end of the day it is their property and they'll want to know how you're getting on there and if there are any problems. I also wanted to mention that when we first moved in we were told to never get in contact with the landlord and do everything through the estate agents. Once we met him, he said the opposite. If your landlord is okay with you contacting them first, then go for it.

Ask Permission - I suppose this sort of comes under the communicating one but anyway. If you're wanting to make some big changes to place, it really is much better to ask the landlord first. You don't want to be adding new things, changing carpets, painting walls etc for them to not know and not be happy about it. As much as you want to make it your own, you have to respect it isn't your property and it's so much easier to just ask first. Most landlords won't have an issue. A lot of the time you can find these sorts of things out when first viewing a place. That is one of the questions we asked during our viewing, are we allowed to decorate? and we were told there should be no problem. And so far there hasn't been. He's been fine with us putting stuff on the walls, replacing furniture that was here when we moved in etc. It just saves a lot of hassle if you ask first, get permission and then go ahead.

Renewing/Ending Your Tenancy - This is probably common sense really but when deciding you want to end your contract you have to give notice, and most of the time it's about 4 weeks. We've not had to do that yet but we know the amount of time we need to give, and it's the same as what our landlord would give us if he decided to sell. When it comes to renewing your tenancy agreement, get in touch in plenty of time, a good few months before it's due to end, that way you will know in plenty of time if you're landlord is okay with you staying on. You can then discuss how much longer you want to stay etc. We were in this situation last year and after discussing it with our landlord it worked out easier for everyone if we went onto a rolling monthly contract rather than another fixed one. That discussion also gave us some reassurance that he had no intentions of selling the flat and so we're safe here for quite a while yet. 

Pros of renting

More Flexibility - If you're someone who gets bored after a while in one place, renting gives you the opportunity to move about. You can easily move away when you're contract is up and discover somewhere new and you're not held down with a mortgage. It also means if you or maybe your partner wants to move away for work or gets an opportunity to relocate, you don't have to worry about selling.

May Be Able To Save Money - Depending on the sort of place you rent and the area, you could find yourself not paying a massive amount of rent and being able to put that towards other things. If your rent isn't bad which luckily ours isn't, money could be put towards a holiday, a deposit for a mortgage, etc.

Your Landlord Is There To Help - If you have a broken boiler or washing machine for example, that is something the landlord can deal with. Our washing machine unexpectedly broke a few months ago and within a few days he had arranged a new one for us. He's also always been quick to fix anything that may have broken in the flat or if something has needed doing he's always been happy to do it. There are a lot of things that aren't actually your responsibility when you rent and it's nice to have someone else to come over and sort them for you whereas if it's your home, it's all yours to deal with and pay for.

Cons of renting

 It's Not Really Your Home - When it comes down to it, it's not your that has bought the flat/house and there is always a possibility that the landlord will want to sell. With renting there is always a little bit of doubt that maybe one day you'll get given your 4 weeks notice and you'll have to quickly find somewhere else to live and also find the money for it. At least with buying a house, once it's yours, it's yours and there is no need for worrying about getting kicked out.

You Can't Always Do What You Want With It - As I mentioned earlier in this post, if you're wanting to make changes to the place it's best to ask permission. Even though most landlords don't have an issue with this, it can be annoying not being able to do what you want do it without having to ask first. It can make you limited in terms of decorating and adding things because really it's not your property to do that.

It Can Feel Like You've Wasted Money - With buying a house, you know each month when you pay your mortage it's yours. With renting, you're essentially paying off someone elses mortgage and at the end of it you don't really get anything from it. A lot of people think it's just a waste as in the end it's unlikely to be where you stay forever and it's never officially going to be your home. A lot of people now choose to stay at parents as long as possible, save for a mortgage and skip the whole renting part.

There are both pros and cons to renting, and really whether you choose to do it or not is down to you and your circumstances. Some people don't have much of a choice, others prefer renting, and some would much prefer to just save and buy a house. For us, we've had a pretty good experience with renting so far and hopefully that will continue. I'm not sure when the day will come for us to buy a house, we're not even close to being in the position to save for a deposit so for now renting is our only option, as it is for a lot of young people. I hope this post has given you a bit of information about renting if you were unsure, and I hope my tips were useful. I've just tried my best and even though this post is extremely long, I hope it makes sense and maybe helps someone!

What's your experience with renting? Would you prefer to save and buy or are you happy to rent?

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Wednesday 19 July 2017

Face Masks I've Been Loving Recently

I never really understood the face mask hype until recently. I'd see people every weekend on Instagram or Twitter saying they're doing a facemask and I'd just never really understood what was so nice about it but I've actually tried quite a few out over the last few months and I have to say I now love them and just keep wanting to buy more! I mentioned 3 face masks in my Anatomicals review and it was then that I realised how enjoyable it actually is, and since then I received one in one giveaway and 4 in another, so I've had plenty to keep me going. I thought because I now kind of love a face mask I'd show you the ones I've been using and why I've enjoyed them!


I'm going to start with the Superdrug face masks, there is the Cucumber Cooling Clay Mask, Argan Oil Clay Mask, Fruit Sorbet Antioxidant Peel-Off Mask and the Superfruits Exfoliating Mask. First of all these are super cheap so perfect if your new to face masks and don't want to spend a lot, and also just perfect to keep in your cupboard for when you need a bit of a pamper. The first one I tried was the Fruit Sorbet one, it had such a nice scent. Really fruity and zingy and it was really nice to apply. It was quite sticky and it did feel weird when it was drying but I suppose all face masks do! My skin felt so soft after using this and I'm definitely going to pick another up soon. The one out of all of these that I was really excited to try was the Argan Oil Clay Mask. Everyone loves something with Argan Oil in and this one is supposed to soften the skin while deeply cleansing pores for smooth complexion. I absolutely loved it! It was one of those that you can almost see drying and it ends up a different colour to what you put on. It was quite tight when it was drying and it was a little hard to wash off, but overall it smelled absolutely amazing and made a noticeable difference to my skin. I'll definitely be getting another of these soon. I've still got the Cucumber Mask and the Superfruits one to use so I can't comment on those but so far I'm loving Superdrugs own masks so I'm sure the other two will be just as impressive!


I hadn't actually ever seen this face mask until I received my giveaway prize a few months ago, and the first thing I noticed was that its actually two masks which I think is brilliant. With face masks I sometimes find there is more left for another use but then because I've opened the pack I don't know what to do with it or I find I use it all because I never know how much is enough! With this I knew I could use it more than once so I just applied half all over my face and left for 3 minutes. As it's a self heating mask as you massage it in your face really warms up, it was such a strange feeling! I don't think I'd ever used a mask like this before so it was definitely different! When I rinsed it off though my skin did feel amazing. It was so so soft and I'm not sure what it did to my skin but it worked. It felt so nice and smooth for days which really impressed me! I'm definitely going to get another one of these soon, I've seen them in supermarkets for about £1.10 which I think is a really decent price.


If you've read my blog over the last few months I'm sure you'll have already seen this picture in my Anatomicals review but as this is a post all about face masks I had to include these 3. These were the ones that really converted me into a lover of face masks and I think my favourite was the Hawaii Five Glow as it had a scent of pineapple so was super refreshing and fruity and it also just made my skin feel amazing. I loved the Anti - Blemish one aswell though because it did seem to actually help get rid of a few spots I had. I'm definitely going to be purchasing some more Anatomicals products soon, they are just a fab brand.
I'm just loving face masks at the moment and definitely want to stock up on a few more! They are all so affordable and always make me feel like I'm having a little pamper which is nice.

I'd love to know if you've tried any of these and what you think of them or what other brands you recommend! I'm just obsessed with them all at the moment.

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Tuesday 18 July 2017

Current Homeware Wishlist - July 2017

It's been quite a while since I last did a homeware wishlist and as I am always wanting to buy new things for our flat, I thought now was the time to do another. I do love doing wishlists, I don't know why I don't do them more as if it's not homeware, there is always other stuff I'm thinking of buying! 

So this wishlist is probably going to be mainly office based, because to be honest I am sick to death of the spare room and it needs turning into something good! We have lived in this flat since the end of 2014 and at the time we thought within a few months we'd have the spare room done and since then it's just been the place all the crap goes that has nowhere else to go. With me spending a lot of time on blogging now, and with hoping to do open university next year, it's got the point where I need a proper work space so I just need to buy stuff for it and do the best I can with that room. The amount of times I walk in there to take blog pictures and walk straight back out is ridiculous. 

So I'm going to start with the more boring stuff and then get onto the more pretty home bits. The first thing we need to get is a desk. I've seen a few recently but I think my favourite is the MICKE Workstation Desk from Ikea, and it's £90 which to be honest I think is quite reasonable. I just love that this has different compartments to it and places for me to store paperwork and stationery, and also there is a room for lots of pretty decorations on the top. I think this would go perfectly in the corner of the spare room next to the window. Next to the desk I want to get a big bookcase as we no longer have space in the living room for more books and dvds so I'm thinking a nice white bookcase like the BILLY one from Ikea for £25 would be good and we can use that for all the extra books that are just laid in a basket somewhere in the spare room wardrobe. It will also be good for storing any books I might need to get if I go back to uni and at least then if they are next to the desk I can just grab them when I need them. To go on the desk I really want to get some sort of office lamp and at the moment I'm really liking the TERTIAL Work Lamp in Pink, again from Ikea for only £9. This sort of hooks onto the desk too so won't take up much room and what I like about these is that they can be moved about and shouldn't really get in the way.
So now onto the more fun side of this wishlist. I really want to get some more homey bits that can be used as props in my blog photos and also things that I could put on the desk I mentioned. The rest of the spare room might not be perfect and how I want it but I at least want a cosy little corner that's neat and tidy and actually good for me to work in. New Look have been killing it with their homeware stuff over the last few months and at the moment I'm obsessed with their little fake plants which I think would look so good either in the little compartments to the left side of the desk or on top. I have also been after a cute little trinket dish for a while and I love this Gold Pineapple one. Not only would it be good for photos, it would also be nice to just keep next to my laptop to store any bits of jewellery or bits like that. I had a little look on the Next side as their homeware is always fab and I spotted two candles which I just have to get my hands on. As I have candles in literally every other room there has to be some in the office aswell. Both the Prosecco one and the Mint Lemonade are £8 each and they just both sound amazing! I got a Strawberry and Prosecco candle last year which I was actually a little bit addicted to, so I definitely need to try and get this one, and doesn't the Mint Lemonade one just sound so summery?
Now onto the last few bits. The globe from John Lewis probably looks extremely random but I've wanted one for so long! I think they are such a unique thing to have in your home and there are so many different coloured ones now you can get, from all sorts of shops. If I couldn't get one for the living room then I'd love one in the office. I've got so many photos I want to frame so I definitely need to pick up a few new photo frames. I love this gold one from Paperchase, I don't really have one like it and I think it would look perfect on top of the desk. Also from Paperchase I'd really love the London frame. I'm not sure if I'd even add a photo to it or just keep it as it is but it's me so I've got to have something London related in there. I've seen this a few times and I'm still yet to pick it up. The last two bits are a print from Next and an Apricot Blossom Reed Diffuser from Matalan. As I'm sure you know I'm obsessed with prints but I'm not sure if there is room for another big photo wall in the flat so I'm thinking just one or two prints somewhere would look nice in the office. I also just love this one because I get stressed easily especially when it comes to taking blog photos and I know for fact I will if I start open uni so I think this would be a good one to have to remind me to keep calm and breathe! The reed diffuser I picked because I just love having them around the flat. They always make each room smell amazing and I loved the sound of the apricot scent. This is another thing which would look so good on the desk.

So that's everything on my current homeware wishlist, quite a lot, most of which I won't even end up with! I just need to get that room sorted and putting things down like this that I'd want for it and imagining what it could look like, makes me so much more excited to get started on it! Hopefully one day it will be done and exactly how I want.

Do you like anything on this wishlist? Whats your go to shop for homeware?

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Monday 17 July 2017

Anatomicals Facial Spritz Review*

Anatomicals are a brand I only discovered a few months ago and I actually did a review of some of their skincare bits which you can find here if you're interested, and I absolutely loved their range of products. When they got back in touch a few weeks ago and asked if I would like to review their facial spritz, I was so happy and of course I said yes. This is one of their products that I'd had my eyes on for a while so I was really excited to finally try it.
This facial spritz is supposed to help you cool down, rehydrate and calm your skin. It can be used on normal, dry and sensitive skin so should be perfect for everyone.

First of all I love the packaging! Anatomicals just have the best packaging, it's so quirky and out there and they always have the the best names for their products. I love the colour of this and also it's a brilliant size. It's perfect on my bedside table but it's also great to keep in your handbag for when you're out, in work or even on holiday.

I've always loved the idea of a facial spritz and I always think to buy things like this when it's warm but I never get round to it. The last few weeks the weather has been up and down, but on the days it's been warm I've found it so unbearable so this has been a life saver. I just can't stand the heat, and my flat gets so hot, it doesn't matter how long the fan is on, how wide the windows are open, it just gets so warm so this has honestly been amazing. Whenever I've been feeling too warm I've just sprayed this on my face a few times and it has cooled me down instantly!

The consistency of this is basically just like water so when it's sprayed you just get a fine mist come out which is good as it means it can sort of just dry by itself on your skin. It's really convenient to use and is perfect to just get out whenever you're feeling a bit warm.
This facial spritz has extracts of calming lavender and peppermint so really is such a lovely scent. I'm not usually the biggest fan of lavender but this isn't too strong and it's not overpowering, it's also really refreshing and just feels soothing on my skin, it's been perfect.

This has just been amazing and one of my go to products over the last few weeks, I already don't want it to run out! It's just a brilliant product to have in your handbag ready for when you're feeling a bit too hot and need quickly cooling down. I've sprayed this on top of my makeup too as it's been so warm and it's not affected that at all aswell so that's another bonus.

Anatomicals are definitely one of my favourite brands this year so far and I already know I'll be buying this along with more of their other products in the future as they just do so many exciting things. If you're wanting to try this out too, you can buy from Superdrug for £6, available here, and you can also find their range of products on their website here.

Have you tried anything from Anatomicals before? Do you think this is something you'd love?

*I was sent the facial spritz to review, as always all opinions are my own. Affiliate links are used in this post

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Thursday 13 July 2017

A Mid Year Look At My 2017 Blogging Goals

Now we're almost half way through July, I feel like it's time for me to do a little mid year look at my blogging goals for this year. I set myself 6 blogging goals at the start of 2017 and I just thought it would be nice to see where I am with them all and if I'm on track to achieve them over the next few months.

Commit To Blogging 5 Times A Week

 This was one of the main things for me with my blog this year. I have been so committed since the beginning of January with posting Monday to Friday and keeping up with it! I'm so happy about that because I don't feel like personally, mentally and physically this year has been my best so far, so there have definitely been times when my blog could have been forgotten about and I could have quite easily not posted some days. I'm so proud I pushed on though and I've carried on with it. It's hard trying to come up with so many posts so I have content ready to post 5 times a week but I think I've come up with some quite good posts and I'm proud of every single one. Hopefully I can keep up with it for the rest of the year!

Take Part In More Twitter Chats

 This is probably one so far I haven't really done that well with. I've took part in a few chats this year and quite a few comment threads, which I do tend to prefer as I get to read a load of lovely posts and receive some lovely comments back. I just find with chats I really have to be in the right frame of mind for it and over the last few months I just haven't really. If I've had a bad day I just won't even consider it because I know then if maybe not many people respond to me or the topic isn't really something I can say much about, I'll just feel a bit crap. I am definitely going to make more of an effort over the next few months with chats though as they are such a good way of interacting with fellow bloggers, I just feel quite shy a lot of the time and hate putting myself out there but I am going to try again soon. 

1000 Twitter Followers

 This was something I really wanted to hit this year. I know I probably could have got to this a lot quicker if I'd took part in more chats and been a bit more interactive, but regardless of that I finally got there, and before the end of the year! I got to 1000 followers in May and I then went on do a giveaway to celebrate it. I'm now just over 1420 followers which I'm really happy with it. I'm kind of hoping I could get to 2000 now before the end of the year but I'm not putting any pressure on it.

500 Instagram Followers

 I set my Instagram goal quite low, not that 500 isn't a lot, it really is! but I just didn't think I would gain many more followers and ever actually reach that milestone because Instagram is just so hard to grow at the moment. Luckily I've managed to hit that target already and I'm now at 920 followers I think. I'm so happy I've managed to get to that, it was hard because so many people do the whole follow/unfollow game which I just can't be bothered with, but luckily it's happened. I've not set myself another goal for Instagram because, any followers I gain now is a bonus, I just want to post whatever on there and whoever decides to follow, does. 

Write More Personal Posts

 I think there has only been a few really personal posts this year so far, the main one being Some Sort Of Quarter Life Crisis. That was one I'd been wanting to write for a while and it had just got to the point where I needed to let things out, and I actually did feel a bit better afterwards. It was basically about how I felt my life didn't really even compare to a lot of other peoples, and how I was really letting a lot of things get to me. Luckily I think I'm coming out of the other side of it now and feeling a bit more positive about life in general so hopefully that will continue. I also did 22 Things I've Learnt In 22 Years, which is a bit different to my other personal posts but one I really enjoyed thinking about and writing. This year so far I've not done as many weekend summaries as I hoped but I have done a few and they've been nice to read back on. Also I posted our 6 year anniversary one earlier this week and I know that's going to be a favourite of mine to look back so I'm really glad I wrote that.

Improve My Photography 

 I am under no illusion that my photography is still probably pretty bad compared to some but you know, I am so proud of it and how much I've improved. I'm not that much of a creative person so I do struggle coming up with ideas for photos of products, but I do think what I've been doing has actually been quite good. I've started using some different props in my photos and just experimenting a bit. I have a few favourites I've took this year so I'll put some in now for you see. Hopefully I can carry on getting better and better with photography as the year goes on, so far I'm happy though.
I'm really happy with how I'm doing with all of my goals at the moment. I can't believe I've already managed to succeed with some of them, and I think the others are all coming along nicely. I'm actually really glad I decided to set myself some blogging goals, because as much as this is just a nice hobby, it's also nice to see it getting out there to more people and reaching more milestones with it.

Did you set yourself any blogging goals?

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Wednesday 12 July 2017

London City Break Bucket List*

Regular readers of my blog I'm sure will know by now my love for London. I might not have travelled far but it is my favourite place in the entire world and I'm sure it will be for many years to come, so when Discount London got in touch and asked if I'd like to collaborate, there was no way I could say no, it sounded perfect for my blog. 

I've been to London quite a few times now but it's such a huge city with so much to offer, and there is still loads left I want to see and do there. I've put together a little bucket list of stuff that I feel like I need to do over the next few years, as hopefully it's a place me and George will keep going back to every year! 

The London Eye 

We stay at a hotel literally right next to the London Eye whenever we go but we are still yet to go on it! It's one of Londons main attractions so it's a must for us to do one day. It's the ultimate sightseeing experience, offering 360 degree views of London and I know it would be incredible. It's something I'd really like to do on our next London trip, and I've always said when we do decide to do it, we're booking in advance as you can get some great deals. With Discount London you can save over 40% on tickets which is brilliant!

See More Musicals 

After seeing Wicked twice over the last year or so, I've now got the bug for musicals and I need to see as many as possible! I think next on my list is Les Miserables. All of the songs are so powerful and I know it's one I would absolutely love. I'd also really like to see Mamma Mia on stage one day and also I think the Phantom Of The Opera would be amazing.

Film Tours

 There are quite a few tours you can do in London, including ones like the Harry Potter Tour where a guide will take you around all the various places the films were set in London. When we were last in London, we saw a guide with a group of people doing a tour, and they were near the millenium bridge and he was explaining how they filmed the scene where the bridge is destroyed by death eaters. It was actually really interesting to hear a little bit of it so I'd definitely like to do the full thing. I'd also love to do the Paddington tour. I love the film, and you can see lots of places they filmed, and there is also a shop dedicated to the bear himself in Paddington station which you get to go to. 

The Shard

 We go to Borough Market a lot when we visit London and from there you can see the Shard really well and I always think how amazing it looks and how much I'd love to go in and take in all the views of London from it. I'd love to book tickets to go right to the top, eat in one of the restaurants and maybe even one day, stay in the Shangri-La Hotel there.

Madame Tussauds 

I've wanted to go here for so long! I just think it's one of those things that would be really interesting to do and I'd love to get some pictures with my favourite celebs. I'd also love to visit a few other similar attractions such as Sealife, Shrek's Adventure and the London Dungeon. You can get tickets for all of them at the same time and if you buy them together you can get a really good discount online. I definitely want to do them all so that's something to consider next time we go!

Shakespeare's Globe 

This is something we have walked past numerous times and I'm always in awe of it. It just looks amazing and I'd really like to go in one day and see a play. 

London Zoo 

 I just love all sorts of animals and it has been so long since I last went to a zoo, so if possible I'd love to go to this one at some point. The Penguin Beach exhibit looks great and you can get close to them during feeding time which I think would be fun. I'd also love to see the Land of the Lions, and also because they are so cute I'd want to find the Otters.

Kensington Palace 

Lastly I'd like to go to Kensington Palace in the future and go to the Diana exhibit where you can see lots of her outfits that have never been on show to the public in that way before. Just to name a few of her iconic outfits on show, there is the one she wore for her engagement portrait and also the blue velvet gown she wore when she danced with John Travolta. I think this would be so special to see.

London has so many amazing things to see and do, and there are also some real gems hidden away so it's somewhere I always want to keep going back to and exploring. If you're going away to London any time soon and are planning visiting some of the bigger attractions, be sure to check out Discount London for lots of brilliant deals and discounts, it's so worth booking in advance and saving some money!

I'd love to know what your favourite thing is to do in London is or if you'd like to get any of these ticked off your bucket list too!

*This post was written in collaboration with Discount London. I only work with brands relevant to me and my blog, as always all opinions are my own.

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Tuesday 11 July 2017

Acre 637 Cider Review*

Cider for me is one of those drinks that just screams summer and warm weather to me. We might be having an up and down summer right now, but for the hot days, a glass or bottle of cold cider is so refreshing and just perfect! When Acre 637 Cider got in touch and asked if I would like try a few bottles, how could I say no? It's definitely one of my go to drinks in the evening during the summer!
'Lightly carbonated, medium-dry finish, like an old Normandy cider. Always 100% heritage juice. A unique selection of rare heritage and traditional cider apples are carefully blended together to make Acre 637.' 

I love a good glass of cider and I could tell straight away that this had something a little bit different about it. That's because the delicious heritage apples used in Acre Cider are extremely rare and can't be found in any other cider. The summer lasts longer where these apples grow meaning they get to soak in the summer sun slowly which gives them their mellow English flavour. I've tried a lot of Cider over the last few years but it was actually quite nice to know this was one a little bit different and unique to them all. The taste of this cider was just amazing. It was so refreshing and just what I needed after a boiling hot day. It had been kept in the fridge for a good few days so was super cold and was so nice in a pretty glass with lots of ice and a straw. It was really sweet which I loved and it just made me want to be sat out in a garden. It's the perfect drink for summer!

Aswell as tasting absolutely delicious, I love that there is actually quite a lot of secrecy around Acre 637. It's all very hush hush where this is made and all we know is that it's from an unmarked secret acre only known as No.637 in the English countryside. I quite like that we don't know much about it's location and that you know that this drink is super unique and isn't going to be like any other cider out there.
Cider is one of my go to drinks in the Summer and even though I do enjoy the fruity bottles from various brands, I always end up going back to the original apple cider so these bottles have been perfect for me and so lovely to try over the last few weeks. This is definitely going to be a brand I go back to and I'm definitely going to try and stock up on a few bottles in the warmer months in future!
I'm just so impressed with Acre 637, not only does it taste lovely and so perfect for the warm weather we've been experiencing lately, I also love the bottles. They are quite simple but they stand out and I like that. I'd definitely be drawn to this in a shop, and also they are pretty big bottles 500ml each, so really brilliant for when you just want to relax in summer with a big cold drink after a stressful day! These would also be great to have out maybe during a BBQ this summer, I'm sure everyone would love it.

If you like the sound of Acre 637 Cider then be sure to give them a follow over on their social media, where you can find out a bit more information about them and see more pictures
- Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

*I was sent two bottles of the cider to review. All opinions are my own and as always I only work with brands relevant to my blog.

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