Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Nails Inc. "Hanover Square":






Nails Inc in 'Hanover Square'
(similar)

I got this nail polish free with Glamour magazine recently as part of their 'London' collection and I don't know how I lived without it!
 It was my first forte into dark polishes since growing my nails and while the pale grey (Marylebone Mews) and true red (Tate) didn't appeal to me, Hanover Sq caught my eye straight away. I've since seen there is also a deep navy colour (Wigmore Street) which is the perfect navy and i'll certainly be keeping my eye out for. 

Back to Hanover Square, it's beautiful, shiny plum / dark brick red colour that looks black when applied but shines beautifully in the light. It's so shiny and applies like a dream; one coat provides enough colour with no chips. The colour is really unusual: in the pictures above it looks like a beautifully dark red colour, but when I first picked the magazine up I thought it was dark purple and looking at it in the current low lights of my house it looks black! 


I've never tried Nails Inc before but for a freebie, i've been really impressed and can't wait to try out more of the Nails Inc. shades!



G


Monday, 10 November 2014

#10



Gilet - Primark (similar)

Shirt - Primark
Wet Look Leggings - Primark (similar)
Strappy Heels - Primark (similar)


A very Primark heavy OOTD for my recent night out for the Launch of Black Swan Leeds. I wanted to look smart/casual so went for everyday pieces with a bit of a twist- a furry gilet, wet look leggings and a sheer shirt paired with my affectionately named 'Devil Shoes' (So pretty but so painful!). I'm obsessed with my furry gilet that's made of a faux-mohair material and is so snuggly and soft; it seems to go with everything and smartens up any outfit. 


I loved this outfit- comfortable, stylish and a slight shake up of my normal all black / monochrome look.




G

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Black Swan Launch:


Last Thursday I was lucky enough to be invited to the launch of a very exciting, new pub in the the centre of Leeds on Call Lane. However, this wasn't just any old pub, this was the Black Swan- a new fusion of the old and the new, the formal and the informal topped with the most amazing yet lethal cocktails i've ever been treated to...


 

















Unfortunately me and my wonderful mum got off to a bad start but we managed to make it in one piece to the Black Swan in time to see the homemade pizzas, made from the unique and very distinct "Motherdough", being made by some of the guests and head chef Anthony. They're all made in the authentic kiln giving them a wonderful smokey taste I couldn't get enough of.We then got the chance to explore Black Swan a little more as we moved to the main bar area. Black Swan have got the interior absolutely spot on; a mix of reclaimed, mix-matched furniture, an amazing atmosphere and a very well stocked bar makes it the kind of place you never want to leave. It manages to transcend between being a high class cocktail bar, a down to earth pub and an authentic pizzeria with no difficultly. It isn't pretentious or trying to hard, it's just effortlessly cool and welcoming.

Then we got to my personal highlight- cocktail making!
The seriously knowledgeable and very enthusiastic bartender (who's name I didn't catch but hopefully you'll see him and his flat cap if you visit!) showed us how to whip up an espresso Martini which tasted divine... he made cocktail making, which has always daunted me, sound so straightforward. 
After we'd been suitably topped up, the owners Si and Shane gave us a talk about the Black Swan and what they're all about. They're so passionate and it really shows in the business. They then ushered us to the outside balcony terrace area which is basically surrounded by built up buildings which gives it a really cosmopolitan feel; I felt like I was tucked away in NYC! The terrace will eventually be a decking area perfect for those balmy summer evenings I keep forgetting exist. Finally, we went back inside and after being handed another cocktail of our choice (I went for the fruity yet refreshing 'Pink Swan' which I would definitely recommend) we settled down for the Yorkshire pub quiz. I'd love to say our team: me, my mum and the lovely Laura from Peaches and Green  did well but we failed miserably (too many of the amazing Mai Thai cocktails!) although Diane from A Tale of Two Sittings and Danielle from Dancing Through The Fire did amazing and totally put us to shame.  

I had the most amazing evening at Black Swan. I can't wait to go back and explore more- their secret outdoor terrace, the different rooms that each tell their own story and most definitely their impressive cocktail and food lists.
Thank you for a wonderful night Black Swan, I can't wait to come back!





G

*This was a media launch - all food and drink was provided me free of charge*

Saturday, 25 October 2014

#9:






As you might have gathered from my Five Guys review this week, I spent last weekend in my second home, Birmingham with my long suffering boyfriend and so, spent all of Saturday in the Bullring shopping, shopping and... shopping.

 I chose to shake up my normal all black look by throwing on my bargain H&M jumper with the comfiest (albeit hugely sized) wet look leggings (Primark, of course) and my new favourite piece, an amazing Primark gilet I picked up in their Selfridges store. It's made of an amazing fluffy material, pretty much identical to this H&M jumper and means I can throw it over jumpers on those not-quite-warm-but-not-really-cold days we seem to get a lot of in England. It was £14 which I thought was quite a lot (cheap girl at heart) but I love the quality and it's so different to anything I own that I had to have it.  I also added my favourite Chelsea boots that have barely left my feet since I bought them... they're so practical, stylish and comfortable.

What's your favourite Primark piece?   



G

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

LUSH COSMETICS | Father Christmas:












After a recent trip to Lush to pick up another bottle of Snow Fairy (Please don't judge me- it's a once a year obsession I just have to indulge) I wanted to also pick up a bath bomb.. I toyed between my favourite or trying something new and the festive feeling must have swept me away because I ended up with this bath bomb. I can't lie, I mostly went for this bath bomb from the promise of it smelling like Snow Fairy. For me, I definitely got the unmissable Snow Fairy pear drop whiff, but the bath bomb is a little less sweet and more citric- I liked this as it meant I could happily lather myself in Snow Fairy without risking smelling like a sweet shop on steroids. 

As for the actual bath bomb, as you can see the colour was definitely the biggest surprise; the bath bomb is pink when it crumbles under the water (The Lush website might say red but mine was definitely pink!) but immediately the colour changes to a yellow,, then a green then finally settles as a glorious, neon extra-terrestrial green colour. There aren't many bubbles, but that isn't the point of the the bath bomb- they would only hide the alien-hue.

I can't lie though, for me as much as I loved the smell the bath bomb and how squeaky clean it made my skin feel, the colour was just a little bit too full on for me.. sitting in neon green water realising what i'd look like as an alien wasn't my idea of a relaxing evening but if you fancy seeing yourself in space-age form, or want to enhance that Snow Fairy smell, i'd really recommend Father Christmas and I can't wait to try more of the Lush Christmas range!


Do you love Father Christmas? Any other Lush Christmas goodies I need to try? 


G

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Five guys:
















So, in case you didn't realise from the title of this post and the pictures- I finally visited Five Guys! Describing itself as a 'fast casual restaurant chain', Five Guys, an American fast food export, opened in Birmingham in March and since it opened i've been so eager to go so last weekend I finally faced the queues and went All The Way...

Walking into Five Guys is an experience in itself; it stands right on the edge of the bullring so you can see the beautiful Selfridges building and do some serious people watching. Inside has such an authnetic American feel with the signiture red and white subway tiles, various reviews printed on the walls and the free peanuts are a nice touch.

In terms of the menu, apparently there are over 250,000 possible burger options but I stuck with the classic 'All The Way No Shrooms' which included two beef patties, peppers, mustard, ketchup, tomatoes, gherkins, fried onions and lettuce and mushrooms for any crazies that like eating fungi. You have to pay extra for fries and your drink which is annoying- who goes just for a burger? But the chips are fried in a cajun spice that is beyond words and there are over 100 different drink flavours. Yep, 100 which, for me, is absolutely the best bit of Five Guys. For only £2.50 you get an unlimited (really decent sized) cup however The Birmingham branch are totally missing a trick by only having two machines (and only one was working on our trip) placed way too close to the counter; meaning at busy times you feel too cramped and rushed to really peruse the drinks menu like you might want to. 

In terms of the actual burger I can't fault it in fact i'm almost drooling thinking about it...(but lets keep that between us); even at peak times the patties are cooked to perfection, and there wasn't too much mustard or ketchup; just the right amount and I won't rave about the fries again (even though I really really want to).As i've already mentioned, it's definitely on the pricey side for what is essentially fast food- sure it might be twice as nice as McDonald's but it's also more than double the price as a burger 'All The Way', little fries and a drink comes in at just over £11. The boyfriend and I reduced our price by sharing a drink (who needs a refillable litre drink each, really?) but I was still a little blown away by the price. 

All in all I absolutely loved Five Guys; I love the little touches, the friendly staff and the amazing food but at over £10 for posh fast food, it's definitely a once in a while treat. 

Have you been to Five Guys? Did you love it as much as me? 




Sunday, 5 October 2014

MAC Myth Lipstick & Naked Liner:










After my recent Harvey Nichols trip, I couldn't resist a trip to the MAC counter.. oops!
I have a seriously love-hate relationship with lipstick; I love how it looks on other people, I love the colours and I love how it can instantly transform a simple makeup look. However on me, lipstick is not a good look' I have really small lips so struggle to not look like a child playing dress up whenever I wear any lip shade.
However, one of my favourites in my collection is my MAC lipstick and i've been after a very Kylie Jenner inspired nude lipstick for the longest time so the lure of the MAC counter proved too much. 
I picked up 'Myth' first after being immediatley drawn to its light pink nude colour- the perfect 'your lips but better' shade for me - and knew I had to get the matching liner for the maximum impact. Because the lipstick is a Satin lipstick it doesn't last as long as matte effects but I find it much more flattering and much softer on my lips- especially as the winter comes in and lips get chapped. As for the liner, don't even get me started. The naked liner is my new beauty must have- it provides such an amazing base and is so long lasting. It somehow manages to be stuble enough to wear under the pale Myth, whilst still packing enough of a punch to wear alone or with a simple gloss for a long lasting, simple lip look. 

I'm so happy with my MAC purchases although I can see the liners quickly becoming a must have for me!

Do you love MAC? Any shades I need to try? 



G










Thursday, 2 October 2014

September Favourites:






Andrew Barton Frizz Tamer  
     1984            

A mixed bag for my September favourites, including my new favourite foundation which has found me finally making peace with Rimmel and their ridiculous shades- I wear 100 (Ivory) and although it's still a shade too dark, I love the coverage of the Match Perfection Foundation enough to overlook it and my new favourite hair product, the Andrew Barton Frizz Tamer. 
I included '1984' because I picked up this copy for 50p in a charity shop and haven't been able to put it down or stop thinking about it all month.
 I've seen a couple of stage adaptations of 1984 and had briefly studied the novel in school but never really took the time to properly devour the book. I actually missed my stop on the bus a couple of weeks ago because I was so engrossed in the book! I find George Orwell's books absolutely fascinating - his take on society and his manipulation of words is next level - i'll definitely be adding to my Orwell collection and couldn't recommend this classic enough- although it may give you nightmares! 

Finally, my mum recently picked up this Shea butter, along with a body butter for herself at Manchester airport and we all know how much I love me a body butter. The Shea one has been no exception; it absorbs quickly and makes my skin feel amazingly soft. 


What were your September favourites?          



G

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

H&M Knitwear Haul:









The recent 20% student discount event at H&M sent me into a little bit of a winter wear hoarder mode. I love jumpers probably more than regular people and i'm ridiculously fussy about them so when I see a jumper I like I have to buy it immediately. This was definitely the case with these jumpers; they're all amazing, none itchy materials and so comfy and warm. I love the colours too; from my beloved black and white to a super cute blush pink colour to an amazing Topshop inspired beige colour number I was really spoilt for choice. 

The fluffy knit is definitely my favourite; I know Primark are currently doing fluffy knits for £10 and this was £14.99 (without discount) but I tried a Primark one and absolutely hated the fit; they made me feel puffed up and like some ridiculous fluffy monster. The H&M knit is completely different - it's thinner and more oversized which makes it feel more trendy and cool rather than me doing a bad impression of the Honey monster. 

I've been really impressed with the quality, prices and variety of the H&M knitwear- i'll definitely be going to them in future for knits that are an amazing quality and amazing quality.