Tag Archives: Next

Summer makeup

I’ve had a few requests recently related to which products I use, and how I apply my makeup – mainly after I shared my ridiculous haul of paraphernalia on Instagram a few weeks ago. My summer makeup is very different from my winter makeup – I pretty much stop using eyeshadow and foundation. Here’s a brief guide to my morning routine!

1. I wash with the Body Shop Vitamin C cleansing polish (it smells fabulous) and a flannel for a little exfoliation.

2. I apply a Hyaluronic Acid serum – from either Peter Thomas Roth or Indeed Labs – I really have noticed plumper skin since incorporating it into my routine.

3. I apply a little moisturizer – the brand varies and at the moment I am using Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic cream.

4. I then use a high spf sun block on my face and neck – normally from Neutrogena and my current favorite is from their Ultra Sheer range as it is lovely and dry to the touch with no greasiness.

5. A lot of the time during the week that’s it – I just add a little concealer under my eyes and my favorite is Maybelline’s Instant Age Rewind – I love the consistency and the applicator.  If I’m heading out on the town somewhere special I will use a bronzer CC cream from the Sephora Collection.

6. Then it’s a little blush and I am obsessed with cream blush at the moment – I love the sheer color it gives without being cakey. I apply Maybelline’s Master Glaze stick in Coral sheen or Just-pinched pink with the stick in a line across the apple of my cheeks, and then I use a Real Techniques stippling brush to blend it.

7. I keep my eyes simple with either a liquid liner (I always prefer a brush applicator and love Dior Addict liner) or felt pen (Marc Jacobs Precision pen is my favorite) along the top lash line with my favorite Tarte Gifted mascara once I’ve curled my eyelashes with a Shiseido curler.

8. Finally a red lipstick. I always apply with a a lip brush – but sometimes skip the lip liner. My favorite liner is MAC redd and my favorite red lipsticks are MAC Lady Bug, MAC red and NARS Hyde Park pencil – I don’t like matte reds.

9. All dusted off with Rimmel bronzer in sunlight – I love this as there is no shimmer in it.

For summer that is it! I love a glow with a retro red lip! Easy and hassle free on a warm morning.

Does your makeup routine change in the summer? On vacation I never wear it and it’s so nice to let my skin go natural for a while.

Madewell, J.Crew, boyfriend jeans, sandals, NextShoes – Next (also ship to the US here) // Jeans – J.Crew (on sale plus an extra 40% off with SALETHERAPY) // Top – Madewell (on sale PLUS an extra 40% off with EXTRA40) // Bag – Marks & Spencers (old)

 

Catching up

I really do love heading back to Bury for a few days. As much as I miss my Husband and children it is really lovely to be a sister, a daughter and an aunty, without worrying too much about being a wife and mommy as well! Last night I got the chance to be a friend too – and an old one at that. I met up with an old school friend who I last saw a couple of years ago. It’s really lovely to catch up and giggle together. Even with all the months and miles between seeing each other it’s still as easy as ever to reconnect.

It was absolutely foul weather – no surprise there – so I opted to wear my cosy AllSaints Haff jumper, M&S flares and new M&S tan pointy toe pumps. I know the flares keep disappearing out of stock online (as of this post 8 and 10 regulars were available online) but both Bury and Bolton had plenty on the racks over the past couple of days. The pumps are gorgeous – I love the cognac with the flares – and they are super pointy with a great mid size heel so they very wearable. They are also available in black and a lovely pale blue.

night out

Today I was woken by my gorgeous 3 year old niece, Alice, who was here to take me shopping again – she’s a girl after my own heart 🙂 We headed to the Trafford Centre where it was guaranteed to be warm and dry!

The other day I purchased Poppy this stunning Next dress, that my Mum immediately said was ‘very Ted Baker’ and I agree. It is a beautiful print and I knew instantly that Poppy would adore wearing scene from the English seaside. Today it was my turn to spoil Alice and I snapped up the identical dress for her. Apparently it is a ‘princess dress’ and she hasn’t taken it off yet! I’ve a feeling these are going to sell out really fast.

Next dress v1 One very happy 3 year old:

Alice shopping

Alice

I’d forgotten how fabulous Next are for children’s clothes and I nabbed this dress for Poppy too while I was back in there. It’s lovely and floaty and less than £20! She’s definitely not a pink girl these days so this blue is a little more ‘grown up’ for her.

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Of course I had to head into M&S again – this time for restocking my knickers 🙂 Some of their lingerie is gorgeous and their fabulous Brazilians are currently 3 for 2.

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I also got a quick snoop around the clothing and fell in love with this camel coat in particular. Boy do I wish I had need of spring coats in Atlanta!

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M&S is FULL of colour and I fell for this coat – I was so tempted – but once again I have absolutely no need for it in Atlanta…I might have justified it somehow before I head to Manchester on Thursday!

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I loved this display of bright summer macs too – again the yellow one is stunning.

M&S macs

Another pair of boots caught my eye too – I just can’t walk by the boot section and not look! It’s a problem…They are a gorgeous square toe boot with a buckle across the front. I think these are the perfect shoe boot to wear with flares this spring. They are also available in navy – its great to see more navy footwear available!

M&S boots

While Grandad was perusing the men’s section Alice and I got some selfie practice – she’s a little pro!

Joanna and Alice 2 Joanna and Alice

Selfie

outfit 1Boots – Dolce Vita Haku // Trousers – Zara // Jumper – AllSaints (old) // Jacket – Uniqlo biker puffer // Scarf – ASOS // Bag – Alexander McQueen (similar here)

Tonight we all feel like celebrating – my Dad has just handed his retirement in, and at almost 67 years old his working days are over…well my Mum has a list for him at home but she might take it easy on him for a while 🙂

Next Bomber Jacket – 6 Ways – 6 Bloggers

I love doing collaborations with my friends especially when we all have such different styles. 5 of my blogging bffs and I recently worked together to showcase this fabulous bomber jacket from Next.  It comes in red and grey and I picked the red – mainly because I have the grey Next biker jacket from last year. I didn’t really know what to expect so I was thrilled when I opened the package to find a lovely soft, lightweight, vivid red jacket.  It’s as light as a sweatshirt so the perfect weight for a throw on here in Spring.  Yes it was gifted – thank you Next – but that has not skewed my opinion – I really love it and would have paid money for it.  Look how great all the other girls look too! Next Bomber jacket challenge Lizzy, Fiona, Frances, Avril, me and Michelle!

Many people steer clear of red thinking it is too bright or won’t go with much in their closet.  I had fun prancing around the other day with different combinations to try and demonstrate how versatile red can be.  My outfits are fairly neutral but red is also a great statement color to clash/colorblock with oranges, pinks and blues. IMG_8193 IMG_8187

Dress – Marks & Spencer // Boots – Isabel Marant // Jacket – Next

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Shoes – Nine West // Trousers – eBay // T-shirt – Express (old) // jacket – Next

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Trousers – Express (old – similar here) // Shoes – BCBGeneration // T-shirt – J.Crew // Jacket – Next

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Sneakers – Golden Goose (old – similar here) // Shorts – J.Crew // Top – Phinius AllSaints (old) // Jacket – Next // Sunglasses – RayBan Wayfarer

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Shoes – Marks & Spencer Limited Edition // Jumpsuit – Splendid // Jacket – Next

Make sure you pop over the the girls’ sites to see what they think and get details on how they styled their Next jackets!

LizzyFionaFrancesAvril, me and Michelle! Next Bomber jacket challenge

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Patterned pants.

I have blogged before about my love for patterned trousers.  They always seem to make a more prominent appearance in my closet at this time of year.  They are a great transitional piece – lighter than jeans but still providing coverage, plus it’s easy to incorporate some spring colors in an outfit with them.

Free People Marant Mollie King Patterned trousers

Images from Pinterest

I’ve only added one pair to my closet this season – these from Zara, who always offer an amazing array of patterned trousers.

Zara

I love any kind of animal print so these Marks and Spencer Per Una ones keep catching my eye – especially as they are on sale currently, with limited sizes left.

Per Una

Mango hit my radar last year when I picked up a couple of great patterned harems in their sale.  These are fabulous in this seasons collection.

Mango

I’d be buying this pair if I didn’t have my linen harems from last year.

Mango 2

Here I am in my Zara pants today.  Off to the Doctors, sniff, sniff, with a horrid head cold which I need to kick it into touch before our beach trip!

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Shoes – Marks and Spencer skate shoes // Trousers – Zara // Tank – H&M // Jumper – TopShop

Yesterday was also a day for some comfy trousers – these are the Next harems that I bought last year.  If you are interested in dipping your toe in the ‘harem pool’ – take a peek at Fiona’s post here – she’s picked some great ones to peruse.

French connection sweater.jpg Next jacket.jpg

Boots – Rag & Bone Newbury navy suede // Harems – Next navy (last year – similar here) // T-shirt – ASOS forever t-shirt // Jumper – French Connection // Jacket – Next (old – similar here)

So patterned pants – will you be sporting a pair this season?

 

The big Thanksgiving catchup.

I’m back…after a brilliant week.  I intentionally tried to avoid the laptop as I was determined not to be sucked in by random Black Friday deals – especially knowing that most brands offer far deeper discounts at other times of the year.  Yes we have been conditioned to go mental on Black Friday but don’t!  You’ll be better off waiting for other big sales – most retailers know we want to spend now but hold out if you can.

The week started with some fun appointments.  Poppy had a layer of pink in her hair – so you can just see it when she has a pony tail.  Less permanent at this age than piercings – and after mine I didn’t want to be too much of a hypocrite when it comes to exploring new looks and self expression.  Lauren at Plum Salon once again looked after us – she is fabulous and I highly recommend her if you are in the Atlanta area.

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It was freezing on Tuesday and it called for some big coat and scarf action.

Unknown1 Zara coat

 

Jeans – coated jeans Dorothy Perkins (25% off everything with Holiday25) // Boots – Dorothy Perkins // Sweater – Boden Westbourne sweater // Scarf – Zara (old) // Coat – Zara

On Wednesday the kids had dental appointments.  Don’t ask me why I scheduled them the day before Thanksgiving.  We had a power cut that morning, due to all the rain and wind we’d had, and I had to go without a shower.  While messaging Fiona and Avril from the waiting room I assured them I didn’t look too skanky with this selfie – no full length photo that day – I’ve enjoyed a break from the mirror:)

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Sweater – Boden Off Duty jumper (last year’s but similar here) // Coat – Mango // Hat – Nordstrom (100% cashmere for less than $30!)

That evening was spent pretending to be a domestic goddess – I chugged a bottle of sparkling while making cranberry sauce, sausage stuffing and then brining the bird.  It was a really fun family night listening to music with the odd random game of chess thrown in.  Chess is our new obsession – I’m still being thrashed by my 5 year old.

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On Thanksgiving Day we had our fabulous friends from Bulgaria over, so we could enjoy an international Thanksgiving.  Neither of us have family here so it was absolutely fantastic to share the day with fun friends.  We talked Communism, music and literature while drinking and eating LOTS.  The best Thanksgiving ever, and I have to say the food was pretty darn good too:)

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The aftermath:

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Yesterday we headed out for a blast of fresh air.  We went to the Georgia Dome to watch the Georgia State Panthers play – a fun day with some tailgating thrown in for good measure.

AllSaints sweatshirt

Shoes – Isabel Marant Bobby sneakers // Jeans – Zara // Sweatshirt – AllSaints (20% off with THANKS) // Hat – Nordstrom // (the jacket below is Next from last year)

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So today it is back to normality – I’m back to running and eating left over turkey:)

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Here’s to my favorite Holiday of the year.  Now to start planning for Xmas – and Maximus the Elf rejoined the clan today so I better be good!

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A night out with MommyEnnui.com

After a failed attempt to get out for lunch on Friday, we thankfully made it out on Saturday night.  We had a marvelous night at a local restaurant with MommyEnnui.com and her Husband.  We have known each other for a while but our friendship has blossomed recently, and they mean the world to me.  There are some people in life (few and far between unfortunately) who you know just love you for being you – warts and all; don’t judge – or if they do you debate it face-to-face; can laugh at themselves – and if they laugh at you you laugh right along too; and have true joie de vivre – but are happy to also admit it ain’t all perfect.  We live in a bubble here in Atlanta where the houses are perfect, moms and their perky pony tails work out daily, and the children are smocked and monogrammed – so spending time with ‘normal’ people is cherished.  We laughed all evening and I tried more vegetarian dishes than I ever thought possible:)  Here’s to next time.

Next blouse 2 Zara and Next blouse 1

Shoes – Nine West (old) // Jeans – Zara coated navy jeans // Blouse – Next (old) // Jacket – Zara tuxedo jacket (old) // Clutch – YSL Belle de jour

 Pointy Pumps

Tuxedo Jackets

 Leopard Print Blouses

Coated Jeans

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Feeding my need for harems.

So you all know by now that I love harem trousers.  I think it is the fact that they are a love ’em or hate ’em item that makes me love them more.  There is no middle ground – they are completely polarizing – I know from the comments I receive.  Thankfully there are a few of us harem lovers around, otherwise stores like Zara and Mango wouldn’t continue to provide as many amazing options as they do.  Even Next has got in on the game – admittedly their crotch is not low slung – but they are great for a harem novice.

Here are my picks from Next – I have them in white and black, and I have just ordered the navy – they are incredibly comfortable and quite flattering if you ask me, though Next seem to employ the same online stylist as M&S.

In navy – these come in black and white too.

Navy Next harem

 

I love this pattern – it reminds me of the Lululemon Wee are from Space print.

textured jersey trousers

 

And of course there has to be some animal print in there.

Animal print

 

And my very favorite – the tie dye option.

 

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Since buying my Mango trousers I’ve seen them featured on a few other blogs so I’m quite happy I bought them before the sold out in the sale on the US site!  You can find them here on the UK site for just 19.99 GBP, again they aren’t too low slung for those of you who just want to dip your toe in the harem trend.

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I’m not usually a fan of paisley but I love the folded waistline this paisley print pair – again just 19.99GBP in the sale.

paisley

I may have also bought these – at just 15 GBP they are great value – a lovely loose linen, perfect with sandals or heels – and great for vacation.

linen

Now Zara are always reliable for harems.  I have a couple of winter styles and then I bought these for my vacation that are now in the sale – I adore them – they are a great blue and lovely and silky. They are the perfect dressy holiday trouser in my opinion.

Blue

 

I’m very excited to see that they are now available in orange or pink in the new collection.

Orange Pink

 

And now for a real love it or loathe it item.  I, of course, LOVE it and have ordered it – it will be waiting on my desk when I return to work – what a treat!  I love how ridiculously it embraces the full LOW slung harem trouser.  With killer heels and a clutch I think it will look simple and elegant.  I present to you the Zara baggy fit jumpsuit.

Jumpsuit

I told you that my Husband was a great lover of harems too – he even wore them at my graduation ball – well he’s just ordered a pair of tailor made ones here.  I’m tempted to invest in some Cypriot couture myself, though I’m a bit concerned about what exactly ‘planted within’ means?

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Meanwhile here I am in the wonderful Zara trousers out for dinner last night.  The t-shirt is Ted Baker which is proving to be incredibly versatile – it goes with everything – and the sandals are Zara too.  I actually put make up on for the first time in a week but still couldn’t face the heat of the hairdryer.

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So have I persuaded you to give harems a go yet?

 

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Fun in Next!

I will be traveling for the next few days – wending my way from Bury to Kyrenia – so there’ll be no blog post for a few days.  To make up for it I’ve done two today.  I couldn’t wait to tell you about my exciting morning;)

Mum and Dad took the children out for the day so I got to have some ‘me’ time in Bury with the shops that I miss.  M&S, River Island, Primark and Matalan were all on my hit list.  However, I was completely side tracked by Next.  What a revelation!

Well in all honesty I had seen some of my blogging friends wearing some great items from Next recently, so I knew I had to take a look while I was here.  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery no?  We are all inspired by what we see in other blogs – and I’ve already bought Avril’s shoes, now I have Hollie and Eve’s jacket, and I think Kat’s jacket too?

For the trip I decided to give two fingers to the weather and wore all white, with my Boden leather jacket.

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T-shirt – Zara TRF linen t-shirt with pink flower (old – can’t see it online in the sale but it may appear again) // Jeans – H&M (old) // Scarf – Boden chincilla pinspot lightweight scarf (I love this and want the acid lime one too)

Here’s the gorgeous Next jersey biker jacket in grey.  I tried a 12 to start with and it was huge so ended up with a 10.  Both Hollie and Eve All Worn Out have this.  It is the softest, snuggliest jacket ever – perfect for Bury – maybe not so much for Atlanta and Cyprus.

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I then spotted these great harem trousers in white.  Some of you may like these – they are not low slung at the crotch – but have quite a tapered leg, others of you may not – as, with most white jersey, you can see the pockets.

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I’m not normally a blouse person at all.  But I was immediately drawn to this.  The leopard print obviously caught my eye, but the colors are also lovely – greys, white and blush tones.  The shape is great too and very forgiving for the muffin top.

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With the jacket it creates a good day to evening outfit.

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The top with skinnies.

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Next up I saw this blue jacket.  I loved it immediately.  It’s a really flattering cut, lightweight and washable too.  I also love the neckline.  Oh and I totally love the fact it was only 28 GBP!  I think Kat has this.  It didn’t photo well at all – I think Next in Bury has the darkest changing rooms ever.

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Finally the shoes.  I didn’t get them – I wanted to – but the toe problem reared it’s ugly head again.  I loved these and realized that I don’t have any navy heels at all so I could completely have justified them – but the little toe just wouldn’t behave.  They came in grey too.  I’m afraid I can’t see them online but I think they were about 28 GBP.

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So all in all a fun trip to Bury – I even managed to grab coffee with my sister.  I didn’t make it to anywhere else but Next I’m afraid.  A good job I think really:)

 

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