Tag Archives: Summer

Fashion: SS14 I Want Candy!

26 Mar


Spring – t’is the season to be jolly. You may think that absurd or damn right rude of me to say such a thing post December but hear me out. We’ve said a fine farewell to Santa and the Christmas stresses for another year, we’ve forgotten about our unobtainable New Year’s resolutions and we’ve managed to finally peel ourselves off the sofa after we super-glued ourselves there with a tub of ice-cream and a Bridget Jones DVD as we sobbed away through our lonely Valentine’s Day. The celebrations are over. Thank the Lord. Spring is the time when we can actually look ahead to the future without any stress endured. The flowers are beginning to blossom, the birds are singing again and we no longer have to choose substance over style in our fashion line-up. This season is all about new beginnings so spring clean your wardrobe with some fresh, crisp hues using a bright and varied colour palette.

pastels fashionThis season it’s all about the sweet scent of pastel fumes. Mint green, candy floss pink, lemon sherbet yellow, blueberry muffin; colours that look so good that they ooze the joy of sweet-shop-shopping.

Pastel colours are fun and feminine without being garish or loud. It softens your look and embodies the spirit of spring. Fresh, clean and energetic whilst being delicate and soothing; pastel colours are a must have for your s/s14 wardrobe. So, rid yourself of those bulky brown knits and black leather jackets and replace with cute pastel dresses ready for sun-drenched summer days spent in daisy fields.


From the catwalks to the high-street, pastel colours are hot this season. Calm blues, delicate violets and warm greys paired with pretty lace and sheer fabrics create that overall sense of ladylike chic. Burberry Prorsum’s entire s/s14 collection is candy coloured and embellished with layers upon layers of structured sheers, creating a dreamy display of a sweet wrapper encased model army. We can’t talk pastel shades without mentioning Christopher Kane. His gorgeous mix of parma violet hues, metallic shines and spring themed statement sweatshirts with the words ‘petal’ and ‘flower’, are pretty and seductive. Topshop have a great collection of pale tones that can be worn from day through to night. Their satin camis are the perfect match for delicate pastels; even their denim has had a candy makeover. Sweet-shop-chic doesn’t just stop at clothing this spring. Re-vamp your accessories with light, bright hues. The Cambridge Satchel Company have a gorgeous turquoise coloured Chelsea bag, aptly named ‘sweet pea’, while Nails Inc. have a limited edition Ice Cream and Sprinkles collection for a delicious way to finish off your dainty new look. Failing that, you can always pop down to your local sweet shop and grab yourself a candy necklace for a fashionable way to treat yourself this season.

Colourful, pastel sweet-shop shades are calming yet energising; the perfect way to begin your spring. Feel refreshed, look cute and leap into the season with a sprinkle of true festive joy for it’s the most wonderful time of the year.

1. Mini Satchel Bag – Asos
2. Tea Cup Necklace – Clothes Lounge
3. Pastel Nail Polishes – Nails Inc
4. Pink Watch – Asos
5. Broken Heart Charm Earrings – Asos
6. Floral Tea Dress – Marks and Spencer
7. Beige Fedora – River Island
8. Multi-Coloured Sandals – Faith
9. Blue Satchel – Cambridge Satchel Company



Beauty Review: Tanning

16 Jul


Now the sun has finally come out, it’s time to get your skin looking and feeling great so you can feel confident and look gorgeous in your hot pants, crop tops and bikinis. Now, I’m not suggesting that tanned skin equals beautiful, or vice versa, quite the opposite. If you sit out in the sun day-in, day-out, your skin may indeed become that beautiful* golden hue that you’re after, but by virtue of what the sun does to your skin, it will not be beautiful underneath, nor will it be beautiful as you age.

The sun’s harmful UV rays causes considerable damage to your skin. You increase your risk of skin cancer by 20% every single time you lay down in that pesky sun bed, the sun is the single most influential factor in the signs of aging including dark spots, pigmentation and wrinkles, and hold up! Pale skin is just as beautiful as brown skin!

Nonetheless, even though people know all these factors of skin sun damage, they think the look that it achieves is more beneficial than the cost and risks, so they go ahead with spending their income on trying to achieve what their momma didn’t give them – dark skin.

Of course, I’m not suggesting that you become a recluse, sit indoors and never go on holidays, but make sure you pack up the SPF and slap it on regularly; you’ll thank yourselves for it. You reduce your risk of skin cancer, you won’t look 72 at 32 and you won’t get burnt to a frazzle when it hurts to even move. I am, however, suggesting pleading with you not to go on sun beds – there is no good that will come out of using a sun bed – it will prematurely age your skin, damage your eyes, suppress the immune system, and double the cancer risk than if you spent the same length of time in the Mediterranean midday summer sun. I am also pleading with you to re-evaluate the meaning of beauty and suggesting that pale skin is just as beautiful as any other colour.

So, you may now have an image of me, a social recluse with Wednesday Adams skin, protesting against cultural hegemony; partially right, but like the rest of us, I flick through the fashion magazines and get sucked into the idea that tanned skin looks great – makes you look healthier (how ironic!), younger (oh the irony), skinnier etc etc. Amazing how just 90 years ago the magazines were telling us that it was fashionable and desirable t0 be pale, surging all women to use techniques in achieving paler skin than each other, who’d have thunk it? Even now there are products out there for dark-skinned beauties to lighten their skin, yet the light-skinned beauties use products to darken their skin. I say, let’s just show off our true colours with pride; don’t change yourselves!

I’m intelligent enough to know that sunbeds are ridiculous things to use, and clued up enough to know to wear SPF in the sun and not be exposed to it for too long. However, even though I wish social thought was different, it’s not, and I’m not powerful enough to change it, nor am I strong-willed enough to stand up against it (Oh how I wish I was) so I just roll with it and try to obtain this golden tan like everyone else. *sigh*

I do however try to achieve this in a safe and sunless way. FAKE TAN:

There are so many fake tan options out there that I see no reason why you would ever consider anything else but the fake way.

I have spent enough time on the Snooki side of fake tanning that I have learned how to stay on the Jennifer Aniston side. So, I will no longer rant about sun damage and  skin cancer; I will use the rest of this post to relay some advice, tips and reviews on what products to use to achieve a so-called ‘gorgeous’ colour without the sun.



The original way to get a sunless tan was through a lotion which you apply all over the body, let dry, and wait for the magic to happen. One of my favourite fake tan brands is St. Tropez. This Self-Tan Classic Bronzing Mousse product is one of the best out there. It’s worth every penny of the £20.43 it costs. The guide colour helps you see if you’ve missed any patches so there’s no guess-work involved, the mousse is light and easy to apply meaning that it dries very quickly, doesn’t clog pores and is completely streak-free. After 4 hours, wash the guide colour off and voilà! A gorgeous, natural looking tan without spending days in the sun. St. Tropez is a classic and is a good’un!

tanMoisturiser Tan:

Who’d a thought you could get tanned skin as well as moisturised skin, at the same time!? Now, not only are you saving your skin by sunless tanning but you’re actively improving its condition by using a self-tan mixed with a body moisturiser. I have tried lots of types including Dove, Johnson & Johnson’s, L’Oreal, Soltan, Makebelieve, and various own brands. The one I keep going back to though, is Garnier. It’s frequently on offer and you can pick up a large bottle for around £3, I always have at least 2 bottles kept in the cupboard. It goes on easily, isn’t sticky, and it makes your skin look and feel beautiful, as well as keeping it moisturised and healthy. I put it on all over my body about an hour before bed, then when you wake up it has developed into a natural golden tan.

rimmelInstant Tan:

It’s vital you have an instant tan in your beauty box just in case you’ve failed to prepare for a night out and then, before you know it, Saturday night has arrived and you’re still milk bottle white. Instant tan is a true life saver. I have used a variety of instant tans from sprays to mousses to lotions, from big name brands to Primark specials; I have tried and tested them all. My favourite one by far is Rimmel. Available in light or dark and in matte or shimmer, there are options for all. I always go for dark matte. Now, you may think it odd that I’m white as a sheet yet go for the dark option – I am lazy; I’d rather apply a thin layer of dark to get my optimum colour in 2 mins, then several layers of light taking 20. And if it goes wrong, no fear, just wash with soap and water and it’ll come off straight away. Rimmel now also offer a gradual tan within the instant tan so you apply the instant tan for a night on the town while a subtle glow is developing underneath so when you wash it off the next morning (or preferably when you get in – before you transfer the orangey residue of your skin onto the bright white sheets), it leaves behind an effortless tan; perfect.

So, instead of spending £20 on a couple of dangerous and damaging sun-bed tanning sessions, spend £5 on a bottle of tanning lotion and not only will you get so much more bang for your buck, you’ll save your skin from wrinkles, sunburn and cancer, and not only will your skin look healthy but it will actually be healthy too.

Spray Tan:

You can also get a professional spray tan. Available at most spas and salons, you just stand there and let a master tanner spray your entire body. It normally develops after 6 hours, then you wash off and you have a long-lasting deep colour, perfect for special occasions when you can’t risk any slight chance of a tan error. Normally available in a range of brands including Nouvatan, Sienna X, Fake Bake, St Tropez etc.


☼ Exfoliate in the shower before tanning to lift all of those dead skin cells

☼ Moisturise tougher/drier areas such as knees, elbows, hands, nails, wrists, ankles and feet before applying

☼ Use a tanning mitt to apply – it will keep your palms free from tan and spread the tan evenly

☼ Always wash your hands thoroughly after tanning – including your nails, then the last thing you should do is squeeze a small amount of tan on the back of your hand and rub with the back of the other hand.

☼Alternatively, use cotton wool pads to apply a small amount of tan to the back of each hand.

☼ Keep gently exfoliating after you’ve got that tan so it helps your fan to fade naturally and prevent patchiness

☼ Keep moisturising (twice daily) after you’ve got that tan so it locks in hydration and stays put for longer

☼ When applying to your face try to avoid the area between your eyebrows and your upper lip and gently wipe away with a towel

☼ Dot a small amount of Vaseline along your brows and next to your hair line before applying to your face

☼ If you don’t have a willing participant around anxiously anticipating the opportunity to tan your back, use a paint roller to get to places your hands cannot.

☼ If you haven’t got a mitt or latex gloves to hand, just apply the tan with your naked hands and then wash off with a baking soda paste afterwards (Baking soda paste = baking soda mixed with water creating a nice, subtly gritty formula which you rub in your hands and wash away with warm water).

☼ If you want to completely remove your entire tan quickly use the above baking soda paste

☼ Wear dark loose-fitted clothing after you have finished to prevent staining

Tanned model - tanning tips


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Beauty Review: Feet

20 May

Happy Feet.

Your poor feet. They’ve supported you through the good times, walking around the endless stores while you get your fashion fix, the bad times, when you storm off in a bad mood stomping around the house, the hard times, as you attempt the 5k run around the local field, and the drunk times, when you’ve stupidly decided to cram your hooves into ridiculously high heels.

You need to take care of your little tootsies as they are an essential part of almost everything you do. And now that the summer is knocking on the door, you need to make them ship-shape before you can even think about putting your snazzy new flip-flops on for the world to see.

Our feet take lots of punishment, and it shows. The rough, calloused skin on the heels needs regular moisturising or it may become dry and cracked. The moist skin between the toes is prone to athlete’s foot. Even the skin on the tops of the feet is vulnerable; it can get sunburned if not protected from ultraviolet radiation.

So, for perfect summer feet:

  • First and foremost. Hygiene.

Pretty simple, wash and soak your feet with a bristle brush in warm soapy water regularly (every day). This will soften the skin and combat the bacteria which causes foot odour. In the summer when feet often get dirty, wash them more frequently. This not only dislodges dirt and grime but when you come home after a long day at work and sink your feet into a shallow bowl of water, it makes you feel instantly refreshed. On a really hot day, submerge your feet into ice-cold water for 15 minutes and you’ll cool down within seconds, soothing inflammation and preventing swelling and discomfort.

Make sure to dry them thoroughly, especially in-between your toes, and only put your feet inside shoes or socks when dry. You can use body powders or foot powders to keep the sweat away from the feet. With 250,000 sweat glands in your feet, it is no surprise that they sweat more than other parts of the body. It is estimated that the sweat glands on feet can produce up to a half pint of fluid a day in hot conditions. Nice. Apply a light dusting of foot powder to prevent sweating, as well as using a foot deodorant or an antiperspirant spray usually used for underarms. Sweat not only causes stinky toots, but when your sweaty trotters rub against your shoes, blisters will appear.  Make sure to wear fresh socks or stockings daily, even if you’re a student and spending your student loan on laundry isn’t high on the agenda. If you do get a blister then never de-roof it. Keeping some blister pads (Compeed or other hydrocolloid plasters) in your handbag is a great idea as blisters can strike even the best prepared feet and make walking miserable. To treat them, pierce the edge of the blister with a sterilised needle, gently expel the fluid and press it down to self-heal. Put a blister pad or plaster over the top to seal it in.

  • Smoothness.

Hard skin forms due to overloading and pressure areas. If you have hard skin on your feet, gently remove it with a pumice stone, foot file or Ped Egg on damp heels and calluses and it will ensure that your feet look utterly gorgeous in your new sling-backs.

Foot files gently remove the thickened skin and leave it feeling soft and smooth, while moisturising foot scrubs made from botanicals such as crushed fruit stones, sugar or chemical exfoliates also help remove dead skin.

Keeping the heel area scrubbed and moisturised is a great and easy way to keep potentially painful heel cracks at bay. If you do develop heel fissures, get them treated professionally as deep cracks can become infected and be very painful.

  • Hydration.

After you scrub, and only where your feet are completely dry, apply a rich moisturising foot cream or balm containing shea butter or cocoa butter all over your feet paying particular attention to your heels whilst avoiding in-between the toes. Look for balms or heel creams containing salicylic acid, urea, petrolatum, an emollient, or a humectant such as lactic acid, which draws moisture into the skin and softens tough calluses. For an intense moisture mask, slap on some of the cream and put a pair of 100% cotton socks on before bed, you’ll wake up and the first step you take will lead you to believe you’ve stepped onto cloud 9. A great way of making feet feel good while helping to prevent the build-up of hard skin and infections.

  • Suncare.

Don’t forget to protect the skin on the tops of your feet. It’s easy to forget about them little blighters all the way down there but they need protection too! A sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 should be applied to the feet when you’re at the beach or wearing open sandals. Sun-burnt feet are NOT enjoybable, for anyone.

  • Nails.

Priority attention with all feet should be the toenails. If shabby and unkempt they are unsightly. Keep them trimmed regularly as overly long toenails are prone to getting caught on things and fungus can build up under the nail, infecting the nail itself.

The leading cause of hangnails and ingrown toenails is clumsy nail trimming. Use toenail clippers to keep them short and file down rough edges. File nails into a shape that mirrors the curve of your nail base. After trimming, dab nails with tea tree oil, a natural anti-fungal, to help keep them healthy and clean.

To moisturise your toenails, try using a cuticle cream, petroleum jelly or vitamin E oil. Put it over the entire nail, including the cuticle, and gently rub it in.

You’re not fully holiday ready without a good summer polish on your toe nails. I like red hues on my toes but the list is endless with colour choice and design details. A good nail varnish will vamp up your toes to look glamorous and cared-for.

  • Comfort and support.

Insoles – If you stand for long hours, you may end the day with sore feet. Insoles can help make shoes more comfortable. Look for insoles that have a plastic shell at the bottom, which makes them strong enough to provide real support.

Also, look out for shoes and sandals with built-in insoles that absorb perspiration as sweaty feet can slip and slide within shoes which as I said, is a recipe for painful blisters.

Shoes – Winter is good for your feet as they’re either strapped into boots or slippers and sit there quite content ‘snug as a bug in a rug’ but when the summer hits, you need to reconsider your shoe options. Wearing flip-flops or completely flat ballet pumps may be essential to get some air to your feet in the summer months but these are often the cause of serious foot problems. These types of shoe are so unsupportive that you can be left in real pain. Conversely, squeezing your feet into high shoes also causes serious damage. Not only do you increase your chances of a sprained ankle but crushed feet can completely change the mechanics of your foot causing bunions and hammertoes. Your tendons can also become unnaturally stretched, which means that it will really hurt to wear flats. It’s best to go for a small kitten heel for day-time, and a sensible wedge for night, as they provide better arch support. There are some great, stylish choices now available so don’t think you’ll look frumpy or mumsy. You’ll look better in them rather than hobbling round looking like you’ve sh*t yourself. For hot, tired feet that have the potential to spoil a lovely summer’s day outing, remember to wear a shoe a half-size bigger than normal as feet swell during the hotter months and need the extra space.

Bunion protector –  Because I’ve made some bad shoe choices, I am developing bunions on both of my feet. I have therefore bought a pair of bunion protectors which attempts to re-align the bones and rid of your bunions. Put them on over night, every night and you should slowly see a difference.

  • Decoration

Foot chains, anklets and toe rings are making a come-back in the fashion arena. Accessorize your trotters will some cool designs, from simple to flamboyant, there are loads of options to make you feet feel elegant and regal. I bought this one for my jolly – newlook


And there we have it, gorgeous, healthy feet that are now, finally, ready to bare in the sunshine!