January Favourites

January isn’t my favourite month of the year after the excitement of Christmas now it’s time for things to start to get back to normal. It’s been a quiet few weeks, although I did celebrate my birthday on the 5th which was amazing. This year I’ve set myself a few goals and they’re clearly written in the front of my journal. Some of them are a little out of my comfort zone, I think it will be good for me to push myself and learn some new skills, so watch out for a blog post coming soon. I’m also keeping a weekly log of things that have made me feel good, something that’s gone well that week or something I’ve just generally enjoyed using. Hopefully by doing this it will help me feel much more positive and stop those negative thoughts that creep in every so often.

Moving on to my January Favourites, I have a right mix of beauty and lifestyles, so let’s get started.

january favourites, anatomicals puffy the eye bag slayer

Even with the best will in the world there are some nights I just cannot sleep, no matter how good my bedtime routine is. well, ok, so it’s probably down to staying up til the wee small hours, drinking and chatting with my friends. This doesn’t happen too often but when it does I look piggy and bleary eyed the following day. These Anatomicals Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer are the first eye masks I’ve tried and oh my word, they are amazing. They are shaped to fit under and around the outer corner of each eye, after leaving them on for about 10 minutes any puffiness has disappeared. Of all the under eye gels I’ve tried for tiredness, these beat any of them, hands down. They feel so refreshing and cooling on my skin, they almost have the same effect as putting a few ice cubes under my eyes. I think I’ll cry if Anatomicals ever discontinued these.

January favourites, lee stafford coco loco dry shampoo

January has been a month where I’ve not felt like doing much with my hair, to be honest an extra 10 minutes snuggled in bed in the mornings felt so much better than washing and styling my hair every few days. I discovered Lee Stafford CoCo LoCo CoConut Dry Shampoo by accident while shopping for a few other beauty bits. This is now an essential for one of my “I can’t be bothered” days, it doesn’t leave my hair looking all white and powdery and it soaks up any greasy areas at the roots, without leaving it feeling dry. My hair feels soft and looks like I’ve spent a bit of time styling it as this dry shampoo adds some volume. Did I say, it also smells amazing too.

January Favourites, Ted Baker Body Spray

Even on the days I’ve been at home I still like to spritz a light fragrance to make me smell nice, especially after my morning shower. I’m also one of those people who adds a few squirts when I get into my pyjamas at night. The fragrance I’ve been using through January is the Ted Baker Body Spray in Blush Pink. This has a really pretty feminine smell, with soft florals and notes of jasmine, sandalwood and musk. I felt dressed and ready for the day, even in an old t-shirt and leggings.

January favourites, Where's The Unicorn

Yes, I know I’m an adult but I’ve literally had so much fun with this book, I think it was one of my favourite presents I received for my birthday. Where’s The Unicorn is a brightly coloured book and you need to find a collection of unicorns as they travel around the world. If you loved Where’s Wally (or Unicorns) then you’ll love this book as much as I do, just no peeking at the answers at the back.

January favourites, Barry M Molten Metal nail paint Ice Pink

I love Barry M nail paints and have probably worn the shade Ice Pink from the Molten Metal Collection for most of the past month. It applies beautifully and lasts really well before any chips start to show. I wore this shade all over Christmas and have only just stopped applying it, I think it’s such a gorgeous colour. I’ll definitely be digging this out again during the summer months when I’m applying a bronzed makeup look.

January Favourites, The Body Shop Vitamin E Hydrating Toner

I’m already obsessed with The Body Shop’s Vitamin E range and recently picked up the Hydrating Toner with my loyalty points. Having dry sensitive skin I always have problems finding a toner that doesn’t leave my skin feeling as though it’s been completely stripped of any moisture. I’ve seen loads of people raving about this one, now I can see why. It’s super gentle and refreshing on my skin, removing any traces of makeup or cleanser. My skin feels extremely soft afterwards and it’s even helped clear up any blemishes I’ve had. This may be one of my January favourites, but I’m definitely repurchasing this and adding it into my skincare routine.

January Favourites, Anatomicals Cruisin' For A Snoozin' Sleep Balm

I ran out of my usual sleep spray and saw the Anatomicals Cruisin’ For A Snoozin’ Sleep Balm whilst on the ASOS website. I’ve been using it every night since as it has a wonderful relaxing fragrance including Lavender. Rosemary, Ginger and Lemon. The balm comes in a tiny tin and you take a small amount and gently rub it into your temples to help get you get in the mood for sleep. I think between the smell and the gentle massage movements it helped me switch off to anything I may have had on my mind before going to bed. I’ve also been taking it with me on journeys to use if I feel a bit anxious and honestly I’ve found it really helped settle my nerves and feel a lot calmer.

Well that’s all my January Favourites for now. I completely missed last months but still had some wonderful makeup favourites over Christmas.

What have you been loving this month?

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A selection of beauty products

I completely missed the end of last month to get this post published, so here are some of the things I’ve loved during August and a bit of September. I was actually quite proud of myself for typing up 5 blog posts in a week, after that I needed some time to myself and catch up with everything else going on in my life. I’ve been helping my Aunt unpack boxes from a house move, being the nosey person I am I had a quick peek at her makeup collection, or rather lack of it. If anyone needs a wish list it’s my Aunt, so we’re going shopping next week and I am spending someone else’s money for a change!

urban decay naked heat palette

I’ve had the Urban Decay Naked Heat palette sitting in my drawer for a few weeks before I started using it, but I knew I’d love it the moment I saw it. The shades are absolutely stunning and I’ve been able to create so many different looks with it. It’s one of those eyeshadow palettes that people would assume was only for a summer bronzed look, but I think these colours would look amazing during Autumn too. I flippin love this eyeshadow palette, especially the shades Lumbre, Layenne and En Fuego.

barry m sunset gel nail polish, Barry m matte me up liquid lipstick

barry m sunset gel nail polish

I’ve been obsessed with Barry M Sunset Gel Nail Polish in the shade Fushsia Generation, it’s a gorgeous pinky plum shade and is the perfect colour for in between seasons. Barry M nail polishes always apply really easily and last for ages. I fell in love with the original Barry M Matte Me Up Lip kit, so when I saw they brought out a metallic version I knew I had to get my hands on one. I’ve been using the shade Allure quite a lot over the past few weeks, which again is a gorgeous pinky plum colour. These lip kits are amazing, the applicator makes it easy to apply and the colour just glides on, it doesn’t feel sticky or cling to any dry areas and the colour lasts pretty much all day.

jurlique rosewater balancing mist, zoella cream scrub

I adore Zoella’s Jelly and Gelato range, so much more than any of the others she’s released. The pastel and gold packaging is simply stunning and it smells divine. It has fresh, floral scent with hints of Elderflower and Pomegranate, it’s such a pretty fragrance that is perfect for everyday and not overpowering. The cream scrub wasn’t like any of the thick grainy ones I’ve used before, it’s more of a balm that you melt on your body and leaves my skin feeling super soft. Even my other half liked the smell, so it’s got to be good!

I’m obsessed with anything that has a rose fragrance so I’ve loved using Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist after I’ve cleansed my skin, and it smells incredible. This facial mist did leave my skin feeling soft, although I still need to use my daily  moisturiser. Instead I’ve been using it more as a toner to give my skin that wonderful refreshing feeling. It’s also brilliant to use during the day when I’m not wearing any makeup and feel as though I want to give my skin a bit of a wake up!

wet brush, Zoella cream scrub, barry m sunset gel nail polish

There’s nothing worse than trying to drag a comb through wet knotted hair, I’ve tried various different brushes which seemed to do more damage than good on my long hair. I was originally looking for a brush to carry in my bag for when I got caught in a rain shower, but this Wet Brush has been so good I’ve been using it to comb through towel dried hair before I style it. It’s so gentle and combs through any knots or tangles without pulling, plus it can be used on wet or dry hair.

milk and honey by rupi kaur

My favourite book (if I can call it that?) from last month has to be Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur. It’s collection of poetry about survival through love, loss, abuse and violence. I could relate to this book in so many ways, it’s hard to explain, but i really needed to read these poems right now. Memories of personal experiences have been rearing their ugly head again and this book helped me get through.

What things have you enjoyed this month?

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I’ve not long written a post with all the beauty products I’m obsessed with right now, so for my Monthly Favourites I thought I’d chat about some of the other things I’ve enjoyed doing. June has been a great month, not just because we’ve had some amazing weather but it’s meant I’ve been able to get out and explore some lovely places, read new books, watch new TV series and a whole bunch of other stuff.

A Mini Break

As we’ve been having such gorgeous weather, Adrian and I thought we’d take a trip to the seaside, so we decided to visit Norfolk, which is a lovely area of the UK and holds a special place in my heart as my Nan used to take me there on holiday when I was a child.  I have family living in Norfolk and they’d been inviting Adrian and I to stay for ages, so we travelled up early on the Wednesday morning, which was the hottest day of the year and what better place to be than by the coast! Our first stop was Sheringham we went for a stroll on the promenade along the sea front, which is a beautiful. We found a quaint little beach side cafe and I had the most delicious scrambled eggs on toast to keep me going throughout the day. I almost forgot to take a photo!

Sheringham is a beautiful old English seaside town, complete with plenty of tourist shops, pubs and restaurants, a museum and an old steam railway. There’s also a Little Theatre for music events, plays, films and exhibitions, but we didn’t have the chance to go there this time. I love the row of brightly coloured beach huts and my absolute favourite has to be the pink one (naturally!)

Later we travelled along the coast to Blakeney, which is a quaint little seaside village. Here it’s much more peaceful than Sheringham, there’s plenty of wildlife to take photos of and most of the time all you can hear is the sound of the birds and the boats tinkling in the breeze. Blakeney is the sort of place you visit if you just want to switch off and relax, although it has a couple of really old pubs, places to eat, B&Bs and a hotel. There’s one thing I have to do when I’m away and that’s have an ice cream by the sea, somehow it tastes better than back home!

We had the most amazing few days, it was great to get away from our normal daily routine and catch up with family again. I love being by the sea, I don’t know what it is, maybe it’s the feeling that all my stresses are being carried away by the sound of the waves or just the slower pace of life in this part of the country. Whatever it is, I can’t wait until the next time we go back!

Jordans Mill

Jordans Mill has to be one of my favourite local places to visit, it’s not too far from where I live and we’ve been there quite a few times before. Adrian and I enjoyed going for a long walk by the river next to the mill where it is really peaceful and tranquil, I often get totally lost in my own thoughts, plus there isn’t much of a mobile signal, so I was completely undisturbed! We didn’t go inside the mill itself this time but we did take a stroll round the beautiful flower gardens and ended up taking a load of photos. I also popped into the gift shop so I could pick up a few postcards for my scrapbook, I’m trying to collect things from places I visit so my scrapbook is full of happy memories.

Jordans Mill has a wonderful restaurant/cafe which not only sells a good selection of food and drink but the most amazing porridge and fruit for breakfast. There’s something about fresh air that seems to make me super hungry, so after our walk we stopped in at the cafe and sat on the balcony over looking the gardens and river. I had a huge coffee and the most delicious piece of chocolate cake I’d ever tried!

Penpals

I love sending and receiving handwritten letters and this month I’ve made a few new penpals via social media. I love hearing everyone’s news and what they’ve been up to, I think there’s something more personal about an actual letter compared to an email or text. Some of my penpals have even sent prints, cute bits of stationery or trinkets along with their letter, which I think is a lovely idea and always makes me smile.

My Book Of The Month

I’ve been reading a lot more books this month, it’s a great way to unwind before I go to bed. I’ve been going along to my local library and borrowing books just like I used to as a child, that way I can exchange them for different titles when I’ve finished and I don’t have shelves of books that are gathering dust.

One book I had to treat myself to is Capture Your Style by Aimee Song, it’s the perfect coffee table book and you can dip in and out of chapters when ever you get five minutes to yourself. It’s packed with advice on how to tell a story in your photo for Instagram, even tips on where to hold the camera for the perfect selfie. I have’t read all of it yet but so far it’s absolutely fascinating, I know I don’t have the best Instagram feed out there but when I look back at some of my earlier photos I just want to go through and delete a load of them. Yes there are bits with all the technical info in but I think it’s done in such a way that I can relate to it a bit more, rather than your standard photography book.  It’s not only been helpful for my social media, I have a long way to go yet, but the book has made me think about backgrounds if I’m taking a photo of me and Adrian to go in the photo album.

The Handmaid’s Tale

I don’t often mention TV shows in my favourites post, so I thought I’d tell you about one in particular I have been gripped by this month. The Handmaid’s Tale is a series I wasn’t expecting to enjoy but a friend asked me if I’d seen it and after the first few episodes I was absolutely hooked. It’s set in totalitarian run country of Gilead after a religious cult has taken over America. Environmental pollution  has left most of the ruling class women barren and any fertile women are rounded up and forced to live as Handmaids. Their only purpose is to be surrogate mothers for the wives of rich and powerful men, they are treated like slaves and must have no personal identity or will of their own. Without giving too much away, it is extremely intense and I must have gone through every kind of emotion, one episode left me crying in shock because it felt as though I was really there with the main character, Offred. It was extremely well written and well acted but certainly left me thinking about what life could be like if this were actually real.

What have you enjoyed doing over the past month?

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