Tuesday, 25 April 2017

#MYDUBAI DIET WITH FAT LOSS FEAST



In 4 weeks I am heading on a girls trip to Dubai with my bff and I cannot wait!

For the past two weeks and for the next 4 weeks I am working with Joe from Fat Loss Feast to drop a few lbs and get beach ready. Joe offers Online Personal Training and nutritional advice and I am ready and raring to see some great results.

For the past two weeks we have been exchanging information and working together to get a programme that will work for me. Joe records me workout videos that I can complete when I have time and he has also prepared me a meal plan so that when I am feeling a lack of creativity in the kitchen I can rely on his suggestions to stay on track.

I have already seen some great results and I will continue to document my experiences on here as the countdown is on to my holiday. In two weeks I have lost 4 inches from my total measurements and it has felt easy and achievable. So far so good!
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Sunday, 23 April 2017

MY EDUCATION AND WORK EXPERIENCE



Unless blogging is your full time career or you work in digital marketing, PR or blogger outreach it can be hard to relate being a blogger to your work and explain why you spend your evenings and weekends sat behind a computer and snapping pictures to your hearts content.

I actually used to hide that fact that I blogged from my colleagues as I stupidly thought they would think I was frivolous, shallow and at worst not committed to my actual job! I always get asked when people hear about my blog if I want to do it full time and the honest truth is no. Whilst I am so proud of what I have achieved and massively enjoy blogging, I am also really passionate about my career in HR and want to progress. I am really ambitious and think my blog has really positively enhanced my skillset and I thought I would describe exactly why I think that is the case!

Like most, I got my 9 GCSEs, 3 A-Levels and 2 AS-Levels and did I have a clue in sixth form what I wanted to do? Of course not. I have always loved magazines and had dreams of getting into beauty journalism. When the time came to decide what next after school, I had my heart set on attending the University of Manchester and to study something quite general so it could set me up for numerous career opportunities once I left. I opted to study Management and Leisure which was Management Studies but with a focus on the leisure industry, which was perfect for me given my 'if I don't get the grades for uni' contingency plan was to study Beauty Therapy.

One of the biggest pieces of advice I could give people in the last few years of school or at uni would be to get work experience. As much as you possibly can. This will make you stand out from the other thousands of young people who all come out of uni with a massive debt and keen to jump on the career ladder. I was really fortunate that my university course incorporated placements each year as a part of the course requirements. It was through this that I found I really did enjoy the beauty industry along with having a knack for writing and marketing.

Cue a few roles as a Marketing Assistant, I soon realised that I loved being creative and working on internal comms and campaigns that meant something. A new bonus structure, company newsletters, christmas parties, you name it I was there with bells on and keen to make my mark. I have been made redundant a fair few times now during my career and each time I have been really fortunate to fall into something that was right at the time when I needed a new opportunity. It was the first redundancy that lead me down the HR path as I applied for and was successful in getting a HR job with my employer when my marketing role was redundant. I wasn't afraid of retraining and actually it gave me an opportunity to find something I really really loved. I had attended College in the evenings when I worked in Marketing to do Manicure and Pedicure (told you that love for beauty never went away!) so retraining in HR was just something I needed to do and it's the best thing I ever did.

To be successful in HR, alot of employers like to see you being CIPD qualified, so that's what I set about achieving. First the Certificate in Personnel Practice then a Post-Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management, all studied part time in the evenings. Hard work? Yes. Did I resent the evening and weekend study? Again, yes. Would I do anything different? Absolutely not. I am currently working towards my application to become a Chartered Member of the CIPD which basically means you really know your stuff in the HR world. You have to be able to demonstrate certain knowledge and responsibilities and I want to prove to myself and my network that I am precisely that.

Now, you maybe thinking to yourself, what does all this have to do with blogging and how on earth does she think the two are linked?

Stay with me.

As a HR professional, I have often been involved in recruitment and candidates will be assessed against certain competencies. When you are interviewing for a role, having a healthy work life balance, networking, trying to climb the corporate ladder, everything is about having a drive, enthusiasm and ambition. My blog has encouraged me to get out there, network, attend events, be more confident and PR myself. All very worthwhile skills for the workplace. And that's before we touch on being creative, being discplined, organised, a good communicator and being able to work to deadlines.

I have realised that my work and my hobby can go together hand in hand as I can merge my skills between the two. My love of beauty is catered for in a relaxed, non pressured environment, I can be creative, at work feel like I am really contributing to people's lives (cliche I know), and above all be happy with how my career is going, what my goals are and how I plan to achieve them.

I am really very passionate about being ambitious, I think it is healthy and attractive in others to want to better yourself. I enjoy learning and I like to be respected. I read Girl Boss and really admired Sophia Amoruso, her sheer determination and having some impressive business balls! I think there is a lot to be learned from her words and I for one will be continuing with the Girl Boss mentality!!

If any of my readers want to chat about CVs / transferable skills / interview technique then please feel free to email me I would really love to help!
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Saturday, 22 April 2017

#MYBAGXCSC

I was fortunate to be invited to a lovely little afternoon tea at King Street Townhouse with MyBag and Cambridge Satchel Company to get a sneak peak at the new summer collection which I am DROOLING over!

I didn't realise that Cambridge Satchel Company did bags other than the usual satchels and some of the shapes are very Mulberry-esque for a fraction of the price but still amazing quality.

A major blogger perk of the day was that we all received our very own mini poppy bag in terracotta (a MyBag exclusive!) which was personalised with our initials. Such a lovely touch and I am so grateful for such a generous gift!

The afternoon tea was absolutely delicious and everything about the day was super thoughtful and was one of those pinch me moments as a blogger.

I have my eyes set on this neon coral number to add to my collection next! *inserts all the heart eyes emojis*

Thank you to My Bag and Cambridge Satchel Company for a wonderful afternoon xx
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Thursday, 20 April 2017

ESPA EXPERIENCE AT HARVEY NICHOLS


You know when your skin feels dull and in need of some TLC when people start to comment that you look 'tired' which let's face it is a polite way of saying you look like crap...

This has been my issue for the past few weeks so when the lovely ladies at ESPA in Harvey Nichols in Manchester invited me in to show off the GORGEOUS new packaging of the products and have a facial I jumped at the chance!

Nestled in the Beauty Hall the counter is really lovely and ESPA also have use of the Harvey Nichols Beauty Treatment Rooms once a month for a week which is great as it means you can pop in for your ESPA fix and take advantage of a facial too!

The Treatment Rooms are the most lovely calming location just off the Beauty Hall, I was settled onto a super comfy bed and immediately felt relaxed from the scents of the products. I always think ESPA is unique in the way they use your sense of smell to determine what your skin needs in terms of product range. This time I needed a routine to address the combination of dryness and oiliness which I didn't even have to describe.. evidently my nose knew!

It was a god send for my skin and I have really noticed a difference in the weeks afterwards. I have felt much more awake looking and fresh faced which let's face it, that's all anyone wants!

If you want to book in for a treatment then you can call ESPA direct on 0161 828 8839, you will not regret it!
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Monday, 10 April 2017

WHAT'S IN MY EVENING BAG?


I am so nosy and really enjoy reading this type of post.. I have never done the whole what's in my bag tag so today is the day!!

This is what tends to be in my bag during the evening and I will show you what is in my day bag at a later date.

So let's get started. First up we have to discuss the bag. This is my current go-to evening bag as it is just so versatile and my fave shoes are my multi buckle numbers from Topshop so the Pewter colour goes perfectly with the silver buckles. It is the Charles and Keith Pewter Weave Chain Shoulder Bag and can we just pause to appreciate how lovely it is and also how cheap! At £59, I think this was an absolute steal. It's really high quality and I love everything about it. It fits a surprising amount in it and I will definitely be adding more Charles and Keith bags to my bag collection. Just FYI this isn't a sponsored post but I feel more people need to know about this amazing brand!

If I am travelling by public transport then I HAVE to have head phones with me. Mine are the bog standard Apple iPhone ones and I find them to be pretty good.

Makeup and fragrance wise, this is what seems to fill my bag.. (vain much??!!). I carry my perfume which is the Laura Mercier Ambre Vanille which smells like a dream, a Tilbs Lipstick, Mariah Carey for MAC Lipgloss, Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk and an eye chameleon crayon, pressed powder, Kabuki Brush from SpaceNK, MAC Fix + Spray and my Hourglass blush and highlighting palette because it's just so beautiful and can be a use everywhere product!

My purse is a little Aspinal of London Pouch which fits in my cards and some cash but isn't too bulky. Finally, not pictured but FIRMLY in my handbag is my phone! I am using the iPhone 7 Plus and I really love it. I have a HA Designs Personalised Phone Cover and if you are looking for personalised phone covers or other personalised products then definitely check out HA Designs.

What are your evening bag essentials?
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Sunday, 9 April 2017

KITCHEN GOALS

As some of you may know, a 2017 goal of mine is to buy my first home. I am really excited to have full creative run of my own bricks and mortar and design my living space to my preference.

If you are interested in the things I like then check out my Pinterest Board! I am excited about most rooms and thought I would feature a room a month as I try and work towards getting enough dollar together to step on the property ladder. This month it's all about the Kitchen. Some say this is a core room in the house and depending on the flow of the property I end up in I would be inclined to agree!

I love open plan living spaces and I'd love a kitchen / dining / lounge and open to the back garden but let's see what's on the market when I am looking!

One thing I really want is a lot of fresh white and exposed brick, copper accessrories and plants. I am not an amazing chef so as well as an oven I am definitely a microwave girl! I favour convenience over slaving over a hot stove so as I plan my dream kitchen it will absolutely have to have some cooking kit that caters for those of us who are not a dab-hand in the kitchen! I love the look of the combination microwave oven by Panasonic as they are sleek and aesthetically pleasing whilst actually being really very versatile pieces of kitchen equipment.

I cook most meals using the microwave as I don't have to stand and make sure I am not burning anything.. what is your best microwave recipe?
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Tuesday, 4 April 2017

LE METIER DE BEAUTE

SPACE NK: LE METIER DE BEAUTE
Blogging has given me some really amazing opportunities and what I am about to discuss is no exception!

As you all know, I am obsessed with makeup. One of my favourite blogger perks has been working with Space NK, I adore the stores and I clear my diary when the wonderful Jini from PR is in town!

A few weeks back, I head into store to sample the newly launched brand; Le Metier de Beaute.

With beauty, actions speak louder than words so I was thrilled that the brand's Lead Makeup Artist, Ivan, had jetted over from LA to demonstrate the wow factor of the products.

Ivan talked me through the unique concept and qualities of the products as he applied them, along with the science behind the ingredients and how they treat any skin woes from within through transdermal technology which is a truly revolutionary absorption method.

I do have to say that these are very premium products with a price point to match but I would urge you to go and try them out for yourself before splurging. That said, they are the most incredible products and I think for anyone who is curious and on a budget, try the skin products such as the tinted moisturiser as that is the stand out product for me.

At £119 for the Peau Vierge Anti Aging Complexe I absolutely appreciate this is a high end purchase that may not be for everyone. But I know some of my readers enjoy the more luxury content so I always try and feature a combination of price points.

Do I think this product is worth the money? Yes. Simple as.

Here's why.

I have noticed an improvement in my complexion, it is softer, the product has real longevity and looks nice and fresh even after a long day at work. What sealed the deal for me though is how many people have commented on my skin when I have been wearing it. I am simply not used to it and as a former adult acne sufferer I am blown away.

My other two faves from the brand were the Exquisite Kaleidoscope which is the most amazingly versatile throw in your handbag / gym bag / travel bag compact with four swing out palettes of product. Two eyeshadows, a bronzer and a blusher, all with the most gorgeously pigmented texture. The Precision Liquid Eyeliner was also a stand out product for me. Beautifully crisp and opaque, this makes light work of perfecting a feline flick.

Go forth and sample this brand, you will not be disappointed. You really do get what you pay for with this brand. Thank you again to Jini and Space NK for a wonderful afternoon trying out these wow products!!
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Monday, 3 April 2017

ASPIRATIONAL PURCHASES

Goal Shizz

Moving up the career ladder and earning more are part and parcel of being ambitious and breaking that glass ceiling! Aswell as your usual, obvious large purchases to be made with said raise, e.g. getting on the property ladder or buying a car, I have fashion purchase goals too!

Once I feel flush enough to buy these I will know I have made it.. whether it be from a bonus or after saving up, I know I will always look at these pieces as a reward for my hours of hard work, networking and personal development.

To many this will probably sound frivolous but let's look at it this way, if a man was to be promoted or receive a bonus then no one would bat an eyelid if he was to treat himself to a rolex or something fancy so why shouldn't women do the same?

I go back to these faves time and time again so I know that the above are what my heart desires in a big way.

A mix of trend and classic, here's what I love about them;

Burberry Trench Coat: I just know that this classic piece would swiftly become a wardrobe staple. I've always loved the Burberry check (even when it had that bad Daniella Westbrook chav phase) and I'd love to shrug one of these on my shoulders!

Valentino Rockstuds: I hear many people proclaim their love for these shoes because of the comfort, I'm after the lower heel version and would probably opt for nude.. although that dark red with the coloured studs are also divine. These are classic with a trend twist and I just think these again would be a staple purchase due to their versatility.

Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis Bag: This bas is legit everywhere at the moment. On every bloggers arm and to be fair I can see why. A fabulously classic shape, big enough for day but small enough for evening I really love this bag and NEED IT IN MY LIFE.

Christian Dior Tribales Earrings: LOVE LOVE LOVE these. I know they probably look weird if you haven't seen them in a piercing but I love the pearl, I love the day to night look of these and they are just so godamn pretty. The cheapest option of my four aspirational items, I will just have to make do with my non-Dior versions for now and work my ass off to treat myself!

What are your aspirational items?
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