High-street Haul

Now, it may come as a shock to you, but an odd thing has been happening in Britain lately… It has been WARM! And, wait for it… SUNNY!! Amazing, I know. It probably won’t last for more than 3 days, but I thought that the majority of you would have some kind of summer break booked in now and a little post on my seasonal ‘hunting the high-street’ could be quite handy. This post is about the best items available this summer for those of us who can’t afford the Moschino tees and Gucci shades, without compromising on style…


Okay, for a starters, anyone that knows me well enough will know that I believe the shape of clothes is just as important as their design; if a piece is the wrong shape for you, no matter how beautiful it is, you shouldn’t buy it. Many high-street brands cater for a slim, tall figure because this is what models are, but, in actual fact, this makes it very difficult for most real women to find clothes that fit well. I’m only 16, for example, and I need a size 12 in Topshop to get any trousers to fit over my hips – it’s a little ridiculous to say the least. Anyway, this summer, I’ve seen so many stripes in the shops, as well as ‘apron’ cuts and pops of citrus colours. A handful of these SS16 trends inspired my choices when it came to picking out clothes for the holiday season – take a look below to find out more! And if you’re interested in where any pieces came from, simply scroll over the photographs for more information.


What do you think? Are there any items you’ve absolutely fallen in love with this summer? What are your holiday essentials?

Emilia x

Photography: Evie Oliver – check her out here.

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My Top 10 Hair Products

As many of you may know, hair isn’t exactly my forte – if I was on a hair and beauty course I’d be totally screwed for half of it, to put it bluntly. I usually just leave my hair to kink naturally in a messy bun or french plait it (luckily TONI&GUY’s artistic director, Philipp Haug says this is all the rage this summer) and never really give it too much attention. But, I’ve come to the conclusion that I should give it some attention and that actually, I have quite a bit to say about hair products!

I suffer from a super-sensitive scalp, similar to the way I struggle with sensitive skin. This means I have to be extreeemely careful about what I put on my head, because if I’m honest, I’m not really a great fan of my scalp flaking off everywhere! My scalp has this thing where it sort of gets ‘bored’ of a hair product after anything from 2 days to 6 weeks and so it decides to scab up and flake off in a kind of protest. Gross. I know. For this reason, I try to change up my shampoos etc. regularly, but this can be very expensive and I always run the risk of immediately reacting to a product. Apart from this rather difficult issue, I don’t really have many more… My roots are a little oilier than they used to be, to could be a bit longer and I guess I’d like a little more volume at times, although, in general, when my scalps happy, I’m happy with my hair. Due to this dilemma, over the years I’ve trialled pretty much everything there is out there – and lo-and-behold I’ve managed to stumble over some miracle-workers. Take a look!


1. Label.m Honey and Oat Range

My hairdresser uses this on me every time I go to the salon, because my hair just soaks it up – it moisturises my scalp, combatting any dryness, and soothes split ends. This is my number one go to in the winter if my hair’s really suffering – but I use this only on occasion to prevent the ‘boredom’ issue and also because it’s around £4 per 100ml eek! I would highly recommend looking for products that contain honey and oats if you suffer from dry or over-styled hair.

2. Tigi Bedhead Queen For a Day Thickening Spray

For those days when you need a bit of volume – this is like back-comb in a bottle and I have to say, I rate it much more than Label.m’s version. Mousse and foam aren’t really my thing, so this spray is perfect for you if you don’t like getting your hands dirty. Also, it smells absolutely gorgeous!

3. TONI&GUY Prep Heat Protection Mist

I don’t often actually style my hair, as it’s pretty straight naturally, but it wasn’t until I used this that I realised how damaging blow-drying alone can be! By using this spray, I discovered that it was possible for me to achieve a glossy, non-frizzy blow-dry at home. A must-have for any hair type.

4. Bumble and Bumble

I discovered this gem of a brand when ELLE included a bottle of their surf spray in their monthly magazine. And although I only really used the surf spray when french-plaiting my hair and letting it dry naturally, it was a wonderful product for the summer. Giving a  care-free, volumous, boho-vibe to any hairstyle; it matches well with the soft romantic trends of SS16. Even better for those of you with natural waves, because it will really bring them out. WARNING: all of their lines smell so good that you will want to eat them.

5. Percy and Reed Wonder Balm

This product has probably won more awards in it’s lifetime than Adele. This is my go-to shine treatment when my hairs super dry because it involves absolutely no oiliness without compromising on shine. A leave-in balm that prepares hair for styling, is great for any hair type and doesn’t cause issues for a sensitive scalp – perfecto.

6. Lee Stafford Growth Treatment

To be completely honest with you I thought this product would be a complete waste of my time – nothing can make your hair grow overnight. But I was curious, so upon receiving this for my birthday this year, I gave it a 4 week trial, using it 3 times a week. And, oh my, was I amazed! My hair grew more in that month than it probably did over the entire summer and the best thing was – people NOTICED! Upon looking on the Boots site, it looks like this product actually works for a lot of people, so I’d highly recommend it if you’re trying to grow your hair.

7. TRESemmé Renewal Hair and Scalp Range

TRESemme has been the only ‘supermarket’ hair brand as of yet to leave me with a happy scalp, therefore, it’s my daily product. I adore the thickness of the conditioning products and this particular range, targetted at scalp issues, is my favourite. Silky Smooth and Moisture Rich are great alternatives. If splashing the cash on hair products is a no-no for you, but you still struggle with dryness or sensitivity, I’d recommend using TRESemme, even over things like Neutrogena T-Gel Shampoo, which are aimed specifically at dandruff treatment.

8. L’Oreal Paris Elvive Extraordinary Clay Re-Balancing Range

This one was a total shocker as the rest of the Elvive range causes an almost immediate reaction from my skin, but I have to say, my hair has never felt so clean! I’m well aware of the benefits of clay to the complexion (hence my love for products like Clarins Pure and Radiant Mask), but not to the hair as well – it appears that clay is a serious multi-tasker! L’Oreal’s shampoo is made for oily roots and dry ends, ideal for myself, and it claims to leave scalp feeling fresh and roots lifted for up to 72 hours… Now, that’s a rather big statement to make, but so far, I have to say it’s doing pretty well!

9.  Macadamia Oil

Yet another product that was introduced to me by my hairdresser… The Macadamia range comes with a variety of products, ranging from pure oil to nourishing hair masks and is, once more, designed for dry or damaged hair. Despite coconut oil being a saviour for my skin, I have to say, macadamia oil wins in terms of haircare. Many people love Moroccanoil or argan oil, but for me this is the gold medal product, and it smells lush – bonus!

10. Aveeno Nourish and Moisturise 

Aveeno uses a wheat ingredient to act as the protein-based moisturiser and the blend of natural ingredients is seriously the best way forward for super-sensitive skin. As their skincare range is geared towards sensitivity, their haircare range really focusses on this too. The only issue is, the haircare stuff is pretty hard to find in the UK…


 

What are your go-tos for your ‘do? Do you have any recommendations of products for me to try? Let me know in the comments below!

Emilia x

April It List

First and foremost, I’d like to apologise for being a bit well… slack. You see, I’d love to be able to blog all day everyday, but this damn frustrating concept called ‘doing your GCSEs’ exists. I’m trying to balance out blog-life, social-life and work-life all on top of revision and it’s proving a little tricky… Me time? What’s that? So, take this as a pre-warning; over the next few months you’ll be hearing a little less than usual from me. No worries, quantity may reduce but no way will quality be slipping!

This post, as many of you accustomed readers will know, is all about my favourite things for the upcoming month – the things you NEED to go and buy/do/wear. April’s, in tune with the current weather, is a lighter, brighter theme – products that will work even as it gets warmer. Enjoy!


Rosie HW for Autograph Creme Blush in Camisole Blush

To be honest, ‘celebrity’ lines aren’t usually high in quality when it comes to cosmetics – and I don’t particularly rate the Autograph make-up range anyway, so it was a fabulous surprise when this product actually turned out to be as good as high-end products like MAC Cremeblend Blush (£18.50). The formula is better than anything I’ve tried previously – Bourjois, MAC, Revlon. They’re all so ‘unblendable’ compared to this! This blush is a long-lasting, super easy to apply option, perfect for those who aren’t so confident as well as those who are. It comes in a range of 4 colours – Camisole Blush is a perfect coral-toned blush for fair skin – which all blend out to a silky, powder-like finish. I highly recommend trying this and I’ve heard that the lipsticks in this collection are equally as wonderful!

Decorative Hoops

Hoops? Meh… They’ve been around for ages. But dainty little hoops with decorations make the whole concept a lot more exciting! Perfect for the boho vibe of the warmer weather, just like the earrings below – a high-street option from Topshop. So, let your jewellery take centre stage this spring and get experimenting!

Hey Honey Good Morning Facial Serum

This came in my most recent Glossybox, as it’s supposed to be great for all skin types – even sensitive. Weirdly enough, one of my close friends, Grace, had recently been raving about the benefits of honey for the complexion and I was eager to give it a try. There’s no denying, this serum feels absolutely gorgeous on the skin. Also, using it along with my Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish (staring from £6) made a noticeable difference to the brightness of my complexion – people even commented that I looked healthier! For me, although it isn’t a miracle worker for my spots, I can see it being a favourite amongst many people without the issue of teenage skin. It’s nourishing, but non-oily properties make it a great option for a lighter, summer serum.

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Beyonce Ivy Park collection for Topshop

I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited about a clothing line, honestly – I mean it’s QUEEN B who wouldn’t be?! Beyonce has announced that her sportswear collection, ‘Ivy Park’, for Topshop will be released on the 14th of April. This 200 piece collection ranges from around £20 to £150; there’s something for every budget. In addition, she’s created leggings for every body shape and activity, low-rise, mid-rise and high-rise – HOW BLOODY AMAZING! Get ready for some serious shopping, girls, this is one thing you won’t want to miss.

Open-toe Boots

Although they may come across as slightly impractical (surely if you need boots on, you can’t afford to have your toes out?), I think that open-toe boots will be the item that get’s you through the winter-summer transition that we have here in the UK. I picked up these suede, chunky-heeled beauties from M&S for just £35, as I can wear them with pretty much anything – jeans, dresses, shorts. If you’re liking the sound of it, take a look at the following: Hustle Open Toe Boots (£85), Call It Spring Tan Boots (£40), Miss Kurt Geiger Saana Boots (£65).

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Paul Green Trainers

I recently came across this footwear brand in House of Fraser, whilst I was supposed to be looking for prom shoes but instead was drooling over super-cool trainers. I first became a little obsessed with the idea of dressed-up trainers when myself and my mum took a trip to London Fashion Weekend. Many designer brands have always had jazzed-up trainers in their collections, but the high-street hasn’t caught on until very recently. Hi-tops, low-tops all in muted pinks and blues with the occasional pop of colour… if you’re a fan of Superga or the new Reebok ‘Spirit’ collection, I can guarantee you’ll fall in love with Paul Green.

by Terry Sheer Expert

Alright, I’ve already raved about this in my Natural Beauty tutorial, but seriously, I can’t exclude it from the It List. Similar to a BB Cream, in the fact that it’s much less heavy than your average foundation. But there is absolutely no compromise on coverage or lasting-power (which, along with shade, was a bit of a problem with bareMinerals Complexion Rescue). Even if you prefer a heavier foundation for nights out or winter, this is totally the one to get you through the summer months. Believe me, I sat in Space NK and pretty much tried every foundation in there on my face; Nars, Hourglass, Laura Mercier, Shiseido, you name it, I tried it. But, this was a definite winner.

Macaroons

I’ve always loved macaroons, no matter how crazy expensive they can be to buy – I think they’re an ideal summer treat, as they’re not too stodgy or large. One of my best friends, Evie, frequently bakes (and will probably win GBBO one day) and made some gorgeous macaroons as cake decorations. And, well, I’ve fallen in love all over again. If you live in Norwich like me and love macaroons, I suggest you try Macaroons & More or Harriet’s Tea Room.

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 I hope you enjoyed this post and that I’ve given you a little April inspiration! What are you loving this month? Let me know below!

Emilia x

 

Spring ’16: The High-street Edit

Although it still feels a little nippy at times here in Britain, we are beginning to see the very first glimpses of warmer weather. By that I mean: the other day I was actually able to go out WITHOUT a scarf on… (If you live in the UK you’ll understand it’s a very rare occasion.) Being British, sun and warmth is a treat to us; we jump at the opportunity to wear some shorts or even a t-shirt. And, oh boy, do the shops know that… All it took was a sunshine-filled weekend and BAM every high-street store has their spring pieces in the window! Just like you guys, I’m super excited to shop the collections – but, instead of throwing yourself at the nearest tea-dress you see – I’m here to give you a little bit of guidance… Take a look at my picks below!


 

Occasion

Focussed 0n the romanticised vintage trends of SS16 catwalks, these pieces will ensure that you are truly the best-dressed guest.

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Spring Days

For the lighter nights and outdoorsy days; release your inner bohemia with the following…

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City Sun

Comfort crosses with style this spring for busy days – give your outfit a fashionable twist with these must-have items…

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What are your favourite spring pieces? Any collections you are particularly loving at the minute? Let me know in the comments!

Love Emilia x

‘Natural’ Beauty Tutorial

Ohhh, the irony… Welcome to my step-by step guide to creating a natural, ‘you-but-better’ look with make-up. It kind of defeats the object of natural beauty, but I think you’ll agree with me when I say it’s a very small percentage of the population who are blessed enough to be able to go out of the house completely makeup-less. The rest of us, well, ‘natural’ for us is using beauty products to enhance our features, as opposed to totally transforming our faces with cosmetics. This ‘no-makeup’ makeup trend was very popular on the catwalks recently, explaining the rise of products like cream blushes and liquid highlight; both very blendable items.  So, that’s the kind of look I’ve gone for today – it’s perfect for almost any occasion, be it a supermarket trip or a dinner date, due to it’s transformability. Maybe skip the contour for Tescos on a Sunday morning but add a slick of vibrant lippy for a night out? You get the gist.


Alrighty, so here’s me with a totally bare face. As you can see my skin isn’t wonderful, especially around my T-zone, but it isn’t awful. My skin is naturally rather red-pigmented and extremely sensitive. I often get dry patches and, as you can see, I get the odd spot, making skincare purchases pretty damn hard. At the moment I’m using Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish (£15.50) and I have to say, it’s performing very well. I adore how clean it makes my skin feel and I’ve had a handful of compliments about how it has brightened up my complexion, however, it hasn’t done a whole lot for my spots, although they seem to clear a little faster. Anyway, most days, I prefer to use a little make-up after cleansing and moisturising instead of going straight out…


The Tutorial

1. Prime 

For a dewy, laid-back look I usually relax a little on the priming side of things. Instead of using an actual primer, I use a thick nourishing moisturiser like Benefit Total Moisture (£29.50) or Clarins Gentle Day Cream (£40.00) and smooth it out with my fingertips over my cheeks. This really helps any product to stick to my face and prevent sliding.

2. Base

Okay, this is where it gets slightly more complicated… First of all, I apply a pea-sized amount of By Terry Sheer Expert in Neutral Beige 2 (£45.00), dabbing it around my face and blending with the Zoeva Silk Finish brush (£13.00). Sheer Expert is a BB Cream/liquid foundation hybrid and boy does it do what it says on the tin; evens out skin tone and covers blemishes without appearing heavy or drying and dries to a silky finish. AND IT’S SENSITIVE SKIN FRIENDLY!! One word: heaven.

Next up is concealer – I like to use MAC Pro Longwear Concealer in NW15 (£17.50) on any remaining spots etc. because it’s a super heavy concealer. Unfortunately, this does mean it can be pretty drying for some. I blend this concealer out using Zoeva Face Shape Brush (£11.00) and The Body Shop Lipstick and Concealer Brush (£9.00). For my under eye, I brighten up this area with a creamier concealer – Maybelline Fit Me in Fair 15 (£5.99)- and a base of Benefit Ooh La Lift (£17.50). These products then get blended together with the assistance of the trust Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge (£5.99).

To set my base, I apply Laura Mercier Invisible Pressed Setting Powder (£26.00) with the Real Techniques Powder Brush (£12.99) over my T-zone, but because this look is very natural, I use a light hand as I don’t want to appear too ‘matte’.

3. Contour

Possibly my favourite beauty trend of the last few years; who doesn’t love looking thinner without actually having to eat less or exercise more? I begin to contour using NYX HD Blush in Taupe ($6.50) and my Luxie Rose Gold Large Angled Face Brush ($16). Light circular motions along the bottom of my cheekbones build up a cool-toned shadow.

4. Blush and Bronze

For natural looks, I find that cream products are often the best due to their ‘blendability’ – here I dotted Rosie HW Cream Blush in Camisole (£14.00) on the apples of my cheeks and used the Zoeva Silk Finish Brush (£13.00) to blend it to it’s powder-mimicking finish. And finally, to bring the blush and contour together, I used a teeny bit of Shiseido Bronzer in Light 1  (£34.00) over my cheekbones, temples and jawline.

5. Eyes and Brows

Although these are super toned-down, of course you still need to give them a little attention. Using a fingertip I smooth Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Creme de Nude (£4.99) all over my eyelids, so as to banish any discolouration. If you can’t go without a little bit of sparkle, I would recommend gently brushing Zoeva Foil from the Rose Golden Palette (£18.00) or Too Faced Silk Teddy from the Natural Eyes Palette (£32.00) over the lid.

Concerning lashes, I like to keep it simple by using Benefit They’re Real Tinted Lash Primer (£18.50) – a brown mascara type which makes lashes look naturally longer.

When it comes to the brows, first I groom them with a spoolie brush. Then, I use Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Caramel (£15.50) to fill in any gaps and accentuate the arch. A slick of Miss Sporty Clear Mascara (£2.99) can be helpful to make them stay in place, but I’d love to hear how something like Benefit Gimme Brow copes.

6. Highlight

Highlight is something that takes centre stage on a night out – you often find yourself truly sparkling like a glitterbomb has just been throw at your cheeks. Just because this isn’t necessarily a full-on going out look doesn’t mean we should disregard highlight though! Instead of a powder, maybe try a creamstick or liquid highlight? I swear by Benefit Highbeam (£19.50) along the tops of my cheekbones and around the inner corner of my eye, as well as Collection Speedy Highlighter in Pearl Sheen 1 (£2.99) for my cupid’s bow and on my brow bone. I tend to blend out cream and liquid highlight with the assistance of my trusty Zoeva Face Shape Brush (£11.00) – like a mini Silk Finish brush.

7. Lips

Simply apply a slick of Benefit Hoola Gloss (£14.50) or even coconut oil (from £2.54) and you’re ready to go!


 

So… Here’s the final look in natural lighting… Blemishes gone? Yep. Complexion evened? Yep. Would people know you’ve got make-up on? No!

That’s the beauty of it!

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I’d love to see some of your own takes on the natural look and please tell me if you recommend any new products to add to my routine!

Love Emilia x

 

Interior Inspiration

This isn’t something I particularly post about a lot; and that’s because the world for interior design isn’t quite as fast-paced as others, like the clothing market. But, with a new year just passing us and the dreary weather slowly starting to diminish, most of us feel the need for a bit of a spring makeover. That’s where I come in. In this post I’ll be taking you through the 3 biggest interior trends of this Spring and how you can incorporate them into your home! Here we go…

*All suggested items from John Lewis, Next, M&S, Urban Outfitters and Not On The High street*

Copper Accents

This particular trend of copper accessories has been creeping in since late 2015; we saw many high-street home stores, like Next and M&S add copper pieces to their collections. A trend perfect for the younger generation, in my opinion, this works extremely well with monochrome schemes, so it’s an especially easy trend to ‘liven up’ a rather plain room with. Fancy adding some copper to your room? How about these choices?


Grey Luxe

If you’ve seen Kylie Jenner’s new bedroom you’ll know what I’m on about; fur throws, extravagant mirrors and black accessories all perfectly matched with a lilac-toned grey colour scheme, it screams rich girl. However, you don’t exactly have to have Kardashian-level wealth to achieve this look. Of course, our favourite high-street design companies have cottoned on and developed some affordable alternatives! If you’re a fan of this glamorous look, why not try some of the pieces below?


The New Retro

The new retro is a kind of muted, toned-down classic retro. It’s a modernist take on the past. No need to start going totally ‘American-diner’; simply incorporate retro accessories into an extremely modern room for an effortlessly cool ‘old meets new’ vibe. Personally, I think this is more mature than the other trends – it would look fabulously eccentric in a family home. If you’re considering it – why not purchase one of the following pieces?

London Fashion Weekend

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IT’S BEEN SO LONG! a) I’m so sorry for being away for this long and b) I’ve hated it as much as you have. Thank you lord (and by that I mean nice BT man) for installing my Wifi once again. Of course, blogging is the first thing on the to-do list… Recently my life has been hella busy; I’ve moved house, I’ve done an interview with Confetti and Curves and I’ve even been to London Fashion Weekend! Today, I’ll be talking a lot about the latter.

So, on Saturday, I was lucky enough to go to LFW at the Saatchi Gallery; for any of you that are familiar with the fashion ‘weekend’, basically, it’s a taste of the fashion ‘week’ for those of us who aren’t minted or a celebrity. You can book seats for trend and designer shows, you can shop clothes straight off of the past week’s catwalks, you can even meet some of the biggest names in the business! If you’re into that kind of thing, just like me, then it’s just about the best fashion experience you can get your hands on. Myself and my mum booked to see one trend and one designer catwalk, each lasting about 20-30 minutes – trends included the SS16 trends that are predicted to become huge and designer was a gorgeous display of Alice Temperley dresses. Camera-men buzzed around the place and the excitement was tangible as the models showcased each item of clothing.

In our spare time, Mum and I decided to take a look around the rest of The Duke Of York Square, where some of my favourite shops are; Liz Earle, Space NK, COS and an adorable little restaurant named Comptoir Libanais. I couldn’t resist picking up the raved-about Hot Cloth Cleanse and Polish set from Liz Earle and a lady in Space NK introduced me to a wonderful foundation from By Terry, which I wore for the rest of the day. Who said fashion can’t include cosmetics and skincare, hey? LFW know this fact only too well; their shopping zone included a Maybelline pop-up store where you could get your makeup done for free and a Toni and Guy ‘hair-bar’. Also, one of the meet-and-greet talks I went to see was with TONI&GUY’s artistic director Philipp Haug who showed us how to achieve the latest hairstyles at home.

Anyway, here’s my round-up…


 

Clothing

Maximalism: We’re talking in-your-face floral prints, all-over sequins and block colouring.

Bohemia: Perfect for summer and clearly a favourite of Alice Temperley’s, this was all over the catwalk – it looks great paired with ruffles too.

Ruffles: Similar to the popular tassel trend of AW15, but 10 times more glam; I can see big things coming for ruffles.

Graphic Stripes: In my opinion, one of the most wearable SS16 trends; thank you to Louche at Joy The Store for my own pair of gorgeous graphic stripe culottes!


 

Accessories

Pom poms: Fun fashion is back in business; wear these any where from your ears to your hems to your toes. Try: Moyna Embroidered Jute Clutch with Pom Pom Trim

Snake skin: Can be a tricky one to pull off, but start with little accessories such as belts and you’ll soon be slithering away with this trend. Try: La Redoute Snake Effect Clutch Bag

Showstopper Earrings: Possibly my favourite accessories trend of SS16; shoulder-grazers are what should be dangling from your ears! Try: Pearlescent Gem Jacket Earrings

Ankle-tie shoes: This trend has been growing and growing since Autumn 2015, but now that spring is around the corner, we can actually wear them. Try: Lace-up Tassle Block Heel Sandals

Ribbons: The new ‘scarf’ – put them in your hair, around your wrist, on your bag.

Brooches: A nod to the popular 60s trend of AW15, these are fast coming back into high street stores. Try: Fabric Flower Brooches


Hair and Beauty

Blue Everything: I’ve definitely mentioned this one here on IC before; painting your nails? Doing your eyeshadow? Even lipstick? Go blue this season – you’ll be bang on trend. Try: Estee Lauder Pure Colour Envy

English Rose: Similar to ‘no-make-up makeup’ – but just add a little lip/cheek tint to an airbrush base and you’re sorted. Try: Daniel Sandler Watercolour Fluid Blusher

Block Red Lip: Reworked versions of the classic red lip were seen all over SS16 catwalks – orange-red shades were particularly popular. Try: Ardency Inn  Long Play Supercharged Lip Colour in Ladder

Doll-lashes: For the fearless among you; prepare to go full-on anime like Louis Vuitton’s new campaign and create yourself some amazing graphic lashes. Try: Ardell Lashes 134 

Choppy bobs: Another non-mover from AW15 – all of the most fashion-focussed have braved a chop – will you? 

Big textured waves: Relaxed is key, natural and fluffy waves compliment the ’60s and Bohemian looks of SS16 perfectly. Try: Cloud Nine Waving Wand and Label M Texturising Volume Spray

Modern sleek pigtails: Don’t worry, they’re nothing like the terrifying primary school pigtails you’re used to – nooo, these are smooth and loose. Try: Orelia Metal Bar Hairband


If that sounded like your kind of event, why not get tickets to the AW16 show later on this year? Need something sooner? Why not try the Glamour Beauty Festival on March 12th and 13th or visit the V&A’s new underwear exhibition from the 16th of April onwards?

Emilia x

Spring 2016 Fashion Forecast

Yep, it’s that time again; that lovely, supposedly bright and fresh season when baby animals are born, flowers regrow and we ourselves are rejuvenated. Supposedly. In reality, it’s usually incredibly rainy, we are tired of eating salads and trying to go to the gym and spring becomes a bit of a “nothing” season. Well, let me tell you now; not this year ladies!

Spring 2016 may not bring you the promised change in weather, but it sure will bring you the promised change in all things fashion. With a few slightly altered trends transitioning from winter to spring and some TOTALLY new, it’s due to be a full-on start to the year! Below, I’m going to take you through all matter of these, explaining them and recommending how you can make them ‘wearable’… Have fun and, most importantly, get inspired!

 


 

Slogan Tees/Sweatshirts

First of all, let’s start with a brand spanking new trend; of course the idea has been around for many years, but this particular style sort of just jumped into fashion as soon as it heard the word ‘spring’. In line with the sporty movement of 2016, this sort of thing is for the fun-loving, laid-back amongst you all. Slogan tops look great with simple denim counterparts for a boyish feel. Uniquely created and full of character, these are easily found in vintage stores in just about anywhere. Or, if you’re more of a highstreet girl, Topshop, Zara and Urban Outfitters have this trend down to a TEE right now (geddit?!).


 

Blush tones

Fair, mauvey, pale pink tones are striking up everywhere right now, complementing the efflorescent , delicate textures of formal wear right now. Looks stunning on just about every skin tone and adds a hint of colour to any sophisticated grey/black toned outfit – what more could you want? Think re-worked pastels and you’ve got it spot on.


BIG earrings

Prepare for earrings to be made redundant as accessories and take the front seat in the queue. Not something to be barely seen; something to make a statement with – something for the experimental girl, the brave and confident one. Inspiration has come from the glamorous girls of the upper classes and tribal culture and places like Topshop and Accessorize are making this a simple fashion to follow!


 

Choppy, wild, ’60s hair

If you’ve not gathered yet; I’m a huge fan of the ’60s style coming into play at the moment; I love the idea of a doe-eyed, natural, Bond-worthy woman. It’s the definition of sexy in my eyes. Think Brigette Bardot voluminous waves and wispy fringes. This one’s for the seriously fashion-following youth; if you’re going to take a hair risk this season make sure it’s getting this style.


T-bars and straps

Another trend that has slowly creeped in, so much so that we’ve hardly noticed! But look everywhere, catwalk and highstreet and you’ll see straps of sorts all over the footwear. I suppose it’s in sync with the retro-loving sensation of fashion right now. Just browse the Doc Marten’s or Kurt Geiger site and you’re bound to find the pair for you; I’m lusting after the Doc’s Polley Shoe at the moment!


Croc Leather

As my mother says, a woman can NEVER have enough handbags or shoes. I firmly believe that bags and shoes are what make an outfit. Croc leather is a certainly a trend that comes and goes, but invest in a quality piece and it will see you through these fluctuations!  If you’re looking for a new outfit companion, take a look at Topshop and Zara, or even Mulberry and Vivienne Westwood, if you’re a lady of luxury.


Seductively sheer

One of my favourite micro trends of SS16 – dainty yet sexy; all slip dresses and sheer blouses. Well mixed with the lingerie-blending-into-clothing movement. As the days get slightly warmer, expect these lace-detailed, loose-shape pieces to be lining the shelves – relaxed figures are no longer something for simply hiding your body. But, while it’s still a little on the chilly side, don’t be afraid to pull on a turtleneck under that slip dress for ultimate fashion style.


Sweatpants

Sweatpants, joggers, whatever you call them; the classic lazy Sunday trousers. Not any more. Sweatpants, in keeping with the loose shapes trend have become something to wear out. Sport some luxe, light, hareem style sweatpants for a new take on the day-trouser. Kylie’s doing it, Rihanna’s doing it, Zendaya’s doing it – so why aren’t you?!


Trim detailing

This began in autumn last year when fashion began looking for a way to customise minimalistic pieces and BOY has it taken off. That plain white tee? Oh it now has a blue piping trim, darling. On just about any item of clothing, be it dresses, shirts, trousers – trims everywhere, to provide a little contrast; inject a little style. An easy trend for anyone to try.


Bomber Jackets

Obviously, bomber jackets have been around for a little while, but with recent gravitation towards boyish shapes and sporty looks, they fit right in with the fashion of the season. Every store on the high street is shouting about them and I doubt you’ll make it through 2016 without investing in one of these timeless all-weather pieces. Suede, zip-detailed, silk… Whatever your style, there’s bound to be a bomber jacket for you.


Oriental Prints

As we’re moving away from the darker days, here in the UK, I’m starting to notice the classic floral print moving in. Last year it was all about blown-up block colour florals and dark, gothic prints. This year, we’re going oriental. Intricacy in print and gentle tones; but still something you can make a statement with. Looks wonderful on trousers or shift dresses!


 

Trench Coats

As, I mentioned recently, I love the shape of wrap coats; they give anyone a curvy figure, no matter how much curve you really have and are just so classy. Trench coats are spring’s slightly lighter sister to the thick, felt, winter wrap coats we’ve been loving. They still give the desired womanly figure, but are a little more on the military side, which is oh-so-2016. Look to just about any high street or luxury brand and their bound to have their own version of this classic coat. My favourites are Hobbs‘ and La Redoute‘s!

NYE Make-up Tutorial

As many of you followers would gather from the recent NYE fashion guide, I am a firm believer that NYE is the party night of the year; a night for going all out. So, today, I’m giving you the other side of getting ‘party-prepared’ – the make up. We’re going smokey eye, red lip, G-L-A-M! And don’t you worry, all products I use are listed within the tutorial steps below…

  • Obviously before you begin, ensure that your skin is freshly cleansed, toned and moisturised. At the moment I’m using the Benefit Totally B.Right! skincare set (£15.50) that I received for Christmas – Benefit promise that you can have your money back if you see no difference in 28 days, so I guess it must be good.

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  • A great base begins with a great primer (one of the major cosmetics lessons I learnt in 2015). I’ve been loving Emite Diamond Heart Illuminating Primer (£25.90), recently – it lights up your complexion whilst still banishing oil. This is what I am wearing in this look.
  • I’m sure you’ve all heard before, but I swear by bareMinerals Complexion Rescue (£26) in shade Vanilla (surprisingly my crazy-pale skin doesn’t even need the lightest shade!). As it is light coverage and perfect for sensitive skin, I find that it looks best when applied with my Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (£9.99).

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Now for the fun parts – contour, eyes and lips! I always like to contour first, so I can sort of ‘complete’ my base, then eyes, then lips.

  • First of all comes dark contour powder – NYX HD Blush in Taupe (£7.99) is the only contour powder not to transform my pale skin into ‘tangerines’ skin. It’s very cool toned, which is perfect for us fair-skinned ladies. I blend this in to the hollows of my cheekbones (top of ear to mid cheek) with Real Techniques Contour Brush (part of the Core Collection (£21.99)) and Real Techniques Sculpting Brush (£9.99), using circular motions.

  • Onto the eyes – I always begin with a base shade of W.O.S from the Naked Basics Palette (£23.00) and then I use Naked 2 from the same palette to begin contouring the eyes. For this particular look, I went for a dramatic eye look, so I contoured further with MAC Cork and MAC Aromatic eyeshadows. After this, I lightened the inner corners for my eyes once more with MAC Cozy Grey and MAC Kitties, then gently tapping MAC Creative Copper onto the centre of each lid. All of these shadows are from my MAC Amber Times Nine Palette (£30.00) and all were applied using brushes from Real Techniques Starter Set (£20.99).
  • Finally for the eyes, I do my brows. Starting with a coat of Miss Sporty Clear Mascara (£2.99) on them, I then start to fill them in using small, hair-like strokes of MAC Brow Pencil in Lingering (£14.00) (the perfect match for my hair colour). With the shape of my eyebrows now sketched, I darken the ends with NYX Brow Gel in Brunette (£5.50) on my Real Techniques Angled Brow Brush for further definition. However, only a very small amount of product and a light hand is required when using the NYX brow gels. They are the perfect dupe for Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade though! Once again, I coat my brows in clear mascara to keep them in place.

  • Almost finished now… but God forbid we forget the showstopper! A bright red lipstick. It holds the power to glam up ANY look. First of all I prep my lips using Lush’s Bubblegum Lip Scrub (£5.50) to ensure the best application of my chosen lipstick. Then, I line my lips using No7 Precision Lips Pencil in Red (£6.75) before applying Bellapierre Mineral Lipstick in Ruby (£20). This lipstick, which came in this month’s Glossybox is AMAZING – possibly the best formula I’ve ever used. It glides on effortlessly to create an even, gloss-like shade, moisturises the lips and doesn’t even come off after eating and drinking!

So, here’s the finished look…

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I hope this tutorial has helped you decide what cosmetics you’re choosing for NYE or any party occasion really! Are there any other products you’d recommend adding to a party-ready makeup routine? Have you created your own NYE makeup look? Let me know in the comments below!

Emilia x

What To Wear For New Years Eve

Now, I would imagine that most of you reading this are of the age whereupon spending New Years Eve at home with your parents is an unconceivable idea. Instead, we dress up, frivolously splashing our christmas cash on gorgeous outfits, we stay up late; we probably have the most fun we’ve had in the whole year in those final hours of it. But, with sales raging and the weather being completely indecisive –  finding the perfect outfit can often be less than simple. Well, tah-dah, this is where I come in (think of me as your fairy godmother). Because, as you all know, there is nothing better to do in the holidays than scour the internet for more things that you REALLY need. If you receive money for Christmas this could be justified, but for me, it’s just my shopaholic ways… Below you’ll find my outfit ideas for every type of party girl, including accessories, shoes, bags, coats – the lot! Which one are you?

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Oooh, the glitter-grabbing, sequin-stashing, sparkle addict; to be honest, I think every girl has a little bit of this in her anyway. If there’s time to be the show-stopper, it’s definitely New Year’s. Standing out amongst the crowds is a pretty tough task on such a widely celebrated partying night – so dazzling every onlooker is a pretty failsafe way to achieve this. Sparkles look fab with other extreme textures like fur. Make-up and accessories should be simple, to keep the attention on the dress – try to choose neutral block colours like the ones seen above.

From left to right: Sparkly Open Back Dress from River Island (£42.00), Club L High Neck Midi Dress from ASOS (£45.00), Love Triangle Strap Neck Mini Party Dress at ASOS (£35.00), Lulu Guinness Perspex Clutch (£147.00), Neat Belted Slouch Coat (£79.00), ASOS Ecuador Pointed High Ankle Boots (£40.00), Short Jacket from Zara (£39.99), Sparkling Earring Hook from Pandora (£15.00).

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I’d say this is the most ‘me’ out of all these types of dresser – if Bond girls are your idols; sultry, powerful looks, the is likely to be the category for you. Gold accessories and simplistic sexiness, fur and satin, luxurious materials – if you’re going to dress up for one night, why not do it like a queen? These outfits are bound to make you feel amazing.

Showcase Mink Lace Bodycon Dress from Dorothy Perkins (£40.00), ASOS Pephem Bandeau Midi Dress (£38.00), Slinky Plunge Ruched Bodycon Dress in Navy from Miss Guided (£25.00), BCBGeneration Cropped Faux Fur Jacket in Blush at ASOS (£142.00), Black Suedette Ghillie Heeled Sandals from New Look (£29.99), Private Envelope Clutch Bag from Vivienne Westwood (£115.00), Gold Pearl Hoop Earrings from Lisa Angel (£8).

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Lace; for the sweet, innocent girly girl. Not so fast! Lace is for when you want to exude beauty -but for NYE you’re probably going to want to rough it up with some boyish shapes (think bomber jacket). Nevertheless, if the enchanting qualities of lace draw you in – go for it. Maybe even add some loose waves and a bit of sparkle; but remember, you’ll want to keep makeup minimal and fresh.

Chi Chi Kendall Dress (£35.00), The Jetset Diaries Mantra Dress in Berry at ASOS (£125.00), Lace Plunge Bodycon Dress from Miss Guided (£31.00), Lightweight MA1 Bomber Jacket from Topshop (£55.00), Arial Fold Over Clutch Bag from Accessorize (£35.00),  Ravish Laser Cut Sandals from Topshop (£52.00), Love Rocks Leaf & Crystal Hair Clip from ASOS (£35.00).

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This section is basically how I wish I could dress – but my figure doesn’t suit many of fashion’s loose styles and alternative cuts at the minute and there’s no point wearing something if it isn’t right for you! Notice the adverse textures and shapes – in 2015 we are no longer scared to throw them together! Tassles, metallics, geometrical shapes, sherpa… You wear that! This trend is perfect for those of you who like to scour vintage stores; you’ll find many a piece that you can revive with a modern day look.

From left to right: TFNC Bodycon Dress In All Over Swirl Sequin at ASOS (£59.99), Silver Lace Bodycon Dress from Miss Selfridge (£25.00), Fringe Jumpsuit from Warehouse (£75.00), Lacoste Rose Gold Leather Trainers (£85.00), Leather Suede Fringe Clutch from Topshop (£30.00),  Sloan Aviator Jacket from Topshop (£85), Ring Detail Clutch from Topshop (£15.00), Silver Star Hoops from Lisa Angel (£12).


 

I hope this article has been helpful for you, be sure to let me know if you find any more star pieces or any amazing discounts (it is Boxing Day after all)! Finally, I hope you all had a very merry Christmas – expect lots of reviews be coming your way soon!

Emilia x