Sunday, 16 April 2017

Happy Easter with the VQ Hepburn Mk II

Happy Easter everyone! I hope you are all having a brilliant Easter Sunday, enjoying chocolate aplenty, family time and a chance to sit back and relax. I'm putting on a big buffet for the fam which is exciting - although I think I might have gone a tad OTT on the food!

Anyway, onto today's post! The lovely people at VQ got in touch with me recently about collaborating on an Easter post, and as soon as I laid eyes on the website (I'd not previously heard of the brand) I was in heaven. I have wanted a pastel, retro-style radio for as long as I can remember, so when I saw that VQ specialise in gorgeous radios, with a whole host of retro styles, I was sold.

After quite a lot of deliberating (there are just SO many nice styles) I decided to opt for the Hepburn Mk II*, in this gorgeous duck egg pastel blue. For me, it's the perfect mix of modern and retro and oh my god - it looks SO good in my office. The radio isn't just your bog-standard radio either - it features DAB (something I've never had before, so that was exciting in itself!), DAB+, FM and even has Bluetooth. This is a huge plus for me, as I have Spotify Premium as I listen to music so much, so it's nice to be able to hook the radio up to my phone via Bluetooth and listen to pretty much anything.

I think it's going to help a lot when it comes to working from home as it can be so quiet in the day and can get a bit lonely, but having music on always makes me 10000x happier (and more productive!). I'm also thinking it's the perfect opportunity to catch up on some podcasts when I'm working - my personal fave is Emma Gannon's Ctrl Alt Delete - you NEED to check it out if you haven't already!

So yeah, not only does this radio look absolutely blimmin' adorable (just how cute does it look in my Easter set-up!?) but it also sounds amazing and has so many awesome features. There's also an optional rechargeable battery pack so you can literally take it anywhere, or have it anywhere in your home, without having to worry about plugging it in. Another huge bonus - perfect for picnics in the summer!

If you're interested in buying one of these B-E-A-utiful radios, I have an amazing discount code for a whopping 20% off! Just use the code 'FAIRIES20' before the end of May to get your discount! Happy shopping!

What do you think to my new radio? I'm totally in love with it!

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Little Things #15

Homesense Weekly Planner
I popped into Homesense recently (one of the best shops for homeware and stationery), and as soon as I stumbled across this weekly planner I knew I had to buy it. I've been after a new weekly planner for my desk for a while now, as whilst I use my diary to keep on top of things, it's nice to see the week planned whilst I'm working at my desk. What really drew me to this was the fact it also notes the time, so you can literally plan your week out, hour-by-hour. The checklist at the side is really handy too - and it was a total steal at £5.99. I'm hoping it'll make me a bit more organised! 

Diva Pro Styling 'Lily Daze' Hairdryer and Straighteners*
Okay, so can we just take a minute to appreciate how absolutely bloomin' STUNNING these are? I mean, who said hair stylers had to be boring, right? As soon as I laid eyes on these gorgeous hair stylers from Diva Pro Styling I fell in love. Their limited edition 'Lily Daze' print is a floral lover's dream and oh-so perfect for spring. I have been using these constantly since receiving them and oh my god - they're incredible. I had my doubts to begin with - having not previously heard of the brand - but as soon as I started using these I was hooked. They are honestly some of the best electronic hair tools I've ever tried - the straighteners in particular blew me away - they definitely give even GHDs a run for their money. I love how super slim these straighteners are, and I think the hairdryer is the perfect size for travelling. Honestly, I'm so impressed with these - not just a pretty face after all! 

Lola Rose Compton Bracelet*
You know when a piece of jewellery comes along, and you just know you're going to be friends forever? That's how I felt when I received this stunning Lola Rose Compton bracelet. I love beaded bracelets at this time of year and particularly during the summer - I just think they look effortlessly cool go with every outfit. Lola Rose beaded bracelets are even more special because they're made from real gemstones - and pride themselves on being all about "everyday luxury", which I think totally sums the brand up. Wearing this bracelet daily always makes me feel that little bit luxurious, without having to splash the cash. I chose the Candy Mix Agate bracelet because it's just so me and features all the gorgeous pastel candy colours I love wearing at this time of year. It comes in a lovely velvet pouch along with a certificate of authenticity and I think it would make the perfect gift. There are loads of different designs available too, so you're spoilt for choice!

Body Fantasies Signature in Cotton Candy*
Cotton candy is up there in my top five scents, so when I heard Body Fantasies (one of my fave body spray brands - see this post here) were bringing out a cotton candy scented addition, in their new 236ml bottles, I was so excited to see if it lived up to my cotton candy-filled expectations. I wasn't disappointed. This body spray smells SO good: super sweet, and so much like candy floss. I'm all about those sickly sweet fragrances - think Lush's Snow Fairy and Rock Star, or Yankee Candle's cupcake-scented offerings. If you're a fan of sweet fragrances, you NEED this in your life. 

Cath Kidston x Disney
Now, last but most definitely not least, say hello to my beloved Cath Kidston x Disney pyjamas. I have been living in these since they launched a few months ago but I realised I never actually shared them with you guys! I've been obsessed with each of Cath Kidston's Disney launches so far, and I'm super excited for the next one, 101 Dalmations, which is coming in May. You just can't beat one of your all-time favourite brands teaming up with Disney, can you? I can't wait for the next launch!

What have you been loving lately? Let me know! 

Sunday, 19 March 2017

A Beauty Haul

Back in the good ol' days of blogging, Superdrug/Boots beauty hauls were a regular occurrence around here, and quite often they were some of my most popular posts. I don't actually shop in Superdrug or Boots all that often anymore, so when I do it's quite the "event". So, when I placed a (big for me) Superdrug order a little while ago, I thought I'd share my spoils with you guys!

COLAB Dry Shampoo in ParadiseI picked this up after seeing it on a fair few bloggers' Instagram Stories, and because I was in the market for a new dry shampoo. I'm trying to cut down on washing my hair so much in a bid to make it grow (so far it's not really working, but I'll persevere) and this dry shampoo is honestly so good. I've only used it a few times so far but it smells amaze, works so well at disguising any grease and has blimmin' flamingos on the can. What more could you need?!

Maybelline The Eraser Eye Concealer - Again, another product I was drawn into after seeing several uh-mazing beauty YouTubers using it, I had hoped this concealer would transform my under-eye area and leave it looking bright with no dark circles. Alas, I've only tried it once so far but it didn't do a lot for me - I found it quite greasy which only ended up highlighting my under-eye circles further. I'll keep trying with it though as it looks amazing in all the tutorials I've seen.

Schwarzkopf Got2b Volumizing Powder - I'm obsessed with Toni and Guy's volumising powder, but it's quite difficult to get hold of and not the cheapest, so I saw this was on offer and thought I'd give it a whirl. I've used it a fair few times since it came and honestly? I'm really disappointed. Whereas Toni and Guy's version gives me instant, noticeable results, this doesn't really do anything other than leaving my feeling sticky. Not cool.

Maybelline Color Tattoo in Creme de Nude - I bought this as I've been looking for something to use as a base for my eye shadow when I'm doing going out makeup. I'd originally set my sights on the MAC Paint Pots but I'd seen that Maybelline's matte Color Tattoos were a pretty good dupe, and for the difference in price I felt it was silly not to give this a whirl first. I shall report back once I've tried it!

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Rose Gold and Sweetie - Although I already bought some dry shampoo, I couldn't resist adding a couple of Batiste's newer additions to my basket. Batiste has always been my go-to dry shampoo brand so I knew if I didn't get on with COLAB's offering, I'd have this as back up. The Sweetie scent is definitely my favourite - it smells divine.

Eylure Enchanted After Dark Lashes in The Raven - I'm a bit obsessed with buying lashes at the moment, particularly really big and bold ones. I'd not come across the 'Enchanted' range before but as soon as I saw it I knew I had to try it. These lashes look really long, voluminous yet fluttery, and I'm really excited to see what they look like on.

Nivea Men Sensitive Post-Shave Balm - No, my boyfriend's shopping didn't accidentally work its way into this post... this is actually for me! I know bloggers and YouTubers have been using this for a while now in place of a primer, and whilst I'm a tad late to the party I'm so glad I've given this a go. I usually use Benefit's Porefessional as a primer, but it's over £20 a pop so not exactly budget friendly. This, however, is under a fiver and I think it does a really good job. It leaves my skin feeling matte and soft, and whilst the smell is a big manly, I kind of like it!

L'Oreal Hair Expertise Pure Colour Shampoo and Conditioner - Finally, my hair has been in a right old state of late, so I knew it was probably time to up my shampoo and conditioner game and find something that's a bit kinder on my hair. My sister recommended the L'Oreal Hair Expertise range, particularly the version for dry, coloured hair, as she'd been using it and seen real results. It doesn't contain sulphates so is much gentler on the hair, and I'm hoping it will work wonders for my stressed-out barnet!

What have you been beauty haulin' recently? Let me know!

Thursday, 16 March 2017

8 Ways to Feel More Energetic

Having a lot of energy is something I've always struggled with. I am not a morning person by any means - sadly I've always lacked that 'get up and go' that some people seem to naturally have. Bed is my favourite place to be and most days I think I spend 60% of my time yawning. Recently, however, since discovering Neom's Energy Boost range*, I've been taking measures to try and make myself more energetic and awake, and I've found they've really been working. So, I thought I would share some tips for feeling a bit more energetic in the hope it helps any fellow sleepyheads get a bit more get up and go...

1. Create a playlist
If there's one thing that's guaranteed to wake me up, it's a music playlist full of energy-boosting songs. Spotify has some brilliant playlists to choose from (the cheesy tunes playlist is a particular favourite of mine) or you could put together your own list of dancey, upbeat hits to make you feel energised. At the minute I'm loving the faster tracks on Little Mix and Lady Gaga's latest albums to give me an energy boost.

2. Drink more water 
Being dehydrated = being tired. I'm definitely guilty of not drinking enough water, and I really notice the difference when I do manage to get my eight glasses a day. If you're feeling run-down and tired, I'd recommend upping your water intake - hey, it's an excuse to buy a cute new water bottle, right?!

3. Take a shower
I mean, I'd hope you'd do this every day anyway, but whereas I'm usually an evening shower kinda gal, I do find having a shower first thing in the morning as soon as I get out of bed does wonders for waking me up, making me feel more energetic and motivated. Add some energising shower gel into the mix and you're golden.

4. Get outside
Once showered, a brisk walk out in the fresh country air with my dog Rory in tow never fails to blow the cobwebs away and leaves me feeling awakened and refreshed. I usually like to have my energising playlist bellowing in my ears too for the ultimate energetic start to the day.

5. Have a beauty boost
The whole inspiration for this post, I'm currently obsessed with Neom's Energy Boost range. I have the candle, perfume and hand balm, all of which smell incredible and really do work to awaken the senses and give me the energy boost I need. I love spritzing the perfume on first-thing (it's 100% natural and comes in a seriously stunning copper-lidded bottle) and then use the hand cream throughout the day. If I feel I need a big energy boost (this usually happens around 3pm most days) I'll give the candle a light and it always does the trick at waking me up and giving me the motivation I need.

6. Take some vitamins
For the past few weeks I've been taking vitamin B tablets on a daily basis. B vitamins help the body release energy from food, and often people suffer from vitamin B deficiency. I've definitely noticed a difference since taking them and would recommend giving them a go if you're feeling in need of an energy boost.

7. Exercise
As tiring as the thought of a big workout in the gym might be, I never come away from a workout feeling tired - my body might be, but I always feel full of energy and I'm generally bouncing off the walls after a good gym session. I can't recommend exercise enough for waking you up and just for mental well-being in general - as hard as it might be to get the motivation to start, once it's over you'll feel so much better for it.

8. Get an early night
Whilst it might seem glaringly obvious, in this age we're living in of smartphones, social media and Netflix, getting an early night isn't always quite so easy. Even when I say I'm going to go to bed early, it's inevitable that I'll sit scrolling on my phone for a good hour or so before I actually decide to sleep, or it'll be a case of 'just one more episode' when there's a Netflix show I'm particularly interested in. I think we definitely need to take time away from our phones and TVs and ensure we invest in some self-care and an actual early night, sans smartphones, more often than not. I know for me it makes a huge difference if I go to bed earlier, and so I've been making more of a conscious effort to have more of a bedtime "routine" lately that involves going to sleep before 10.30pm, if I can. It honestly makes me feel so much better the next day.

Do you have any tips for feeling energised? Let me know!
All images and content © Hannah Vickers for Away with the Fairies 2010- unless stated otherwise. All rights reserved.