Current Skincare Routine

Current Skincare Routine
Here are the products that I currently use in my everyday skincare routine. Pictured above are: BeautyLab Smart Defence daily moisturiser, Pond’s Cold Cream cleanser, ROC Demaquillage Actif Skin toner, Clearasil Daily Clear Vitamins and Extracts Perfectawash,  Clearasil Daily Clear Vitamins and Extracts cleansing wipes.
Now I have a confession to make. Until very recently, I was very bad to my skin. I always forgot to take off my makeup at night, I rarely cleansed, toned and moisturised and yet I still had pretty good skin.
Then the other week, I mentioned on Twitter that I had really dry skin on my face. I also called my aunt, my go-to skincare guru, she berated me for not taking care of my skin properly and said it may be because of a hormone change from having Jack. So I took her advice – and no matter how tired I am now, I always make sure to use these products.
I use the wipes first to take off my makeup, then I alternate between using my Perfectawash or my Pond’s cleansing cream to cleanse my face. I then use my ROC toner (the brand my aunt swears by) before using my moisturiser just before I go to bed.
The BeautyLab moisturiser was a handy little competition win – as you can see, I’m halfway through already. For some reason, I had a winning streak just before Jack was born – of moisturisers! At least it means I won’t run out. The Perfectawash (which I reviewed here) and the wipes were delivered to me free as a member of the Glamour magazine product testing panel. I adore the Perfectawash – however, I’m not so keen on the cleansing wipes and have already bought another brand ready for when I finish these!
The cleansing cream and toner I purchased myself. Pond’s, because my great-grandmother swore by it and still looked in her sixties when she died at the age of 97, ROC because it is my aunts go to brand – you can tell I’m heavily influenced by the women in my family, can’t you?
Since I started using these everyday, I have noticed that my skin has become less taut and less dry, I’m finding that it is possibly even softer than before my pregnancy!
What products do you use for your daily skincare routine?
xo

REVIEW: The Book People

REVIEW: The Book People
I was recently given the
opportunity to review some books by the lovely people over at The Book People. The name may sound familiar to you for a variety of reasons.
You may have come across them on the internet or perhaps stumbled across one of
their leaflets in a magazine. I , however, have a fond memory of them from my
times at primary school. Every now and again, we would be given a little book
catalogue that we could take home and pick out some books from and that our
parents could buy for often majorly discounted prices. My dad even bought my
first Harry Potter novel from them! I remember the name vividly and have always
kept a keen interest in what the company has done ever since. That company is
of course, The Book People.
For the purpose of review, I was
gifted three books:
a set of two baby books for Jack and a crime thriller for myself. The baby
books were ‘Numbers’ and ‘Colours’ by Orla Kiely. Yes, Orla Kiely, the
designer. She has released a range of new things, including these gorgeous
books.
 Now, Jack is still only tiny,
however I asked the lovely Lindsay at The Book People if they had any books
suitable for very young babies and she came up trumps with these. Although he
cannot talk yet and I’m not too sure how much Jack understands, when reading
these books to him, he takes a keen interest in the pictures and his interest
rarely wavers. As well as being great learning tools for young children, these
books also wouldn’t look out of place on your bookcase – the design is simple
but pretty.

 Jack wasn’t the only person to
have some new books to try. I was kindly given the latest book by Dennis Lehane
to review. Lehane is perhaps most famous for writing ‘Shutter Island’, which is
a favourite film of mine, so I was keen to see what ‘Moonlight Mile’ had in
store for me.
I am an avid crime fiction
reader, whether it’s based in the 1800’s/early 1900’s a la Arthur Conan Doyle,
1930’s/1940’s Agatha Christie or modern day Lee Child. When offered the
chance to review a new thriller, how could I pass up the opportunity?
 ‘Moonlight Mile’ follows the
story of investigator Patrick Kenzie, who finds himself investigating the case
of a girl he is all too familiar with, Amanda McCready. Having gone missing
twelve years previously, Patrick returned her to her less than savoury family,
only to find out years down the line that she has done the disappearing act
again.

The book follows his quest to
find her (and often himself along the way). As expected in crime fiction, there
is violence galore and a twist that I most certainly did not see coming. The
book is a little hard to get into, but once you’re past the first few pages,
this novel becomes hard to put down. You find yourself willing Patrick to find
Amanda and simultaneously wondering what will happen when he does. What secrets
is her neglectful mother hiding? Why has she gone missing now after all these
years? Your questions find themselves answered, and then some, at the climax of
the book – but you’ll definitely keep yourself second guessing until the very
end.

Whilst given the opportunity to
review these books, I thought it would be a great idea to check out the website
for future purchases. I often use other websites to buy my books, but with some
great discounts, free delivery over £25 and a loyalty scheme in the guise of a
‘Points Passport’, I’m sure to be using this website from now on. The website
is simple to navigate around, as is the checkout process, and I can honestly
say I will be purchasing from them in the near future.
I am super impressed with the
quality of books The Book People have to offer. I also find their customer
service second to none and I believe they are definitely worth checking out if
you are a bookworm like me.

You can find The Book People
website here. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter.
 Happy reading!
 xo

What’s In My Makeup Bag?

What’s In My Makeup Bag?
I haven’t done one of these in a while! I recently took a good, hard look at my makeup collection and decided enough was enough. I was all up for slobbing it out everyday in my trackies because lets face it, being a new mum isn’t the most glamorous of jobs and you will get various baby fluids (for lack of a better phrase) all over your lovely new clothes.
However, I decided that I was going to dress at least relatively nicely each day – and to also do my makeup. The past few months have seen me put on maybe a touch of mascara at most, but now I don’t leave the house until I look presentable.
I thought it would be interesting to take a look and see what I currently have in my makeup bag….
This little bag was from Primark – no idea of the price, my Mum bought me a few makeup bags at the same time – I think they were in the sale!
Face Products: Technic Illuminating Face Primer, ELF Pressed Powder in Porcelain, Benefit High Beam mini, Rimmel Stay Matte foundation in Ivory, Rimmel Hide The Blemish concealer in Ivory, FATE blusher quad
Eye Products: Sleek Divine eyeshadow palette, Rimmel Colour Rush trio eyeshadow in Modern Blues, ELF liquid primer in Champagne, Collection 2000 Super Size Fat Lash mascara in Brown/Black
Lip Products: Maybelline lipstick in Candy Pink, Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream lip protectant stick SPF15, Clinique High Impact lipstick in Rosette, MAC lipstick in Viva Glam II, Revlon Super Lustrous Limited Edition lipstick in Pink Giggles
That’s all my makeup bag for now – I can barely do it up! Think I may have a few too many lippies in there….what do you think?
If you’ve got a What’s In My Bag or Makeup Bag post, I’d love to read it – I’m a nosey parker, me!

xo

HOW TO: Write & Send A Guest Post

HOW TO: Write & Send A Guest Post
If you’re a blogger who often guest posts for other bloggers, this is for you.
You may have seen this trick around before. This is the easiest way to send a blog post. If you send the text and images separately, have you ever found that the post sometimes ends up a little muddled at the other end? Or have you ever received a guest post and had to piece it back together? I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum. This should solve all your problems.

I originally found out how to do this from the lovely Ellie over at Misseblog. She posts some fantastic tutorials, why not take a look?
If you’re not a blogger but like to write guest posts, this probably won’t apply – but read on for more information if you wish.

For this tutorial, I’ve used my most recent Like, Love, Loathe post.

Step 1

Open up a new post on your blog, as if you were to publish the post yourself.
Step 2
Write up your post as normal, with links and pictures if needed.
Step 3
Once written, click on the ‘Edit HTML’ tab next to the ‘Compose’ tab. Select all the text in the box and copy.
Step 4
Compose a new message in your email. Paste the text into the message box.
Step 5
The blogger you are guest posting for can then open up a new post in their own dashboard and place your html in.
Step 6
Your post is now ready to be published – and it’s all in the right order!
Would you like to see more tutorials in the future? If so, what would you like to see?
Leave all suggestions in the comment box below.
xo

Guest Post: Taking Chances by Louise

Guest Post: Taking Chances by Louise
My guest post today comes from the gorgeous Louise from Inspire Magazine. I love Louises blog as it certainly does what it says on the tin – it inspires! Louise writes about a variety of different things and I’m glad to welcome her to Futures talking about taking chances – if you’re not taking a chance on anything, then why not?
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I’m writing this blog post about how important it is to take
chances once and a while. No matter who you are or what you’re situation is,
it’s always important to push yourself and take a chance every once in a while.
The outcomes could be amazing.
This concept first hit me at the start 2007, not long after
I had started college. I loved my friends to bits but found that I was growing
apart from my oldest friends. Although in college also, it dawned on me that we
had little of the same interests anymore, even though we were still close. On a
whim, I generally decided to start saying yes to everything. It was much like
the film ‘Yes Man’, but more vague. I just realized I wanted more excitement in
my life and decided from then on out I’d stop making excuses for things and
start doing them. And so I did. When friends I hadn’t seen invited me out, I
would have usually have made excuses like it would be awkward because I hadn’t
seen them in so long, or I was already tired and had college early the next
day. But instead of doing that, I started saying yes. It wasn’t a massive
change, but when I recently found and read an old blog I used to write about my
life this year, I realized that 2007 had been one of the best years of my life.
Generally most of it was spent drinking underage at a popular pub in town but I
absolutely loved it. I was going out more, I was making new friends and I was
finally starting to get the hang of dating boys! At 17, I was obviously still a
teenager but it was then I started to feel comfortable in my own skin as well
and gained a massive confidence that year. Reading it back the other day made
me smile so much, even reading posts where I went into great detail about what
I was up to with boys ;)! My life changed a lot that year because by taking
chances, even the tiniest ones, so much changed. 2007 had its lows as well, but
I started appreciating them as well as they taught me so many things as well.
Then when I left for university in 2008, it all changed
again. Firstly, uni was amazing. At freshers week I came out of my shell even
more and had the time of my life! Uni had it’s ups and downs too of course but
overall it was the most amazing experience. One thing I did not expect to
happen at uni though was for me to grow apart from my friends back home. It
really didn’t dawn on me at all. I remember researching and talking to so many
people about university before I left and I got told so much advice. However,
no one ever mentioned the effect university would have on friendships between
you and friends. I wish I had known this because I would have done things
differently. Although I visited home often for the breaks, I usually had so
much work to do or I was just so happy being at home and relaxing that I made
little effort to see my friends.
So after I graduated in July last year, I came home to some
BIG changes. Basically, a month beforehand I was a magazine journalism student
working part time in a bar, living up north with my boyfriend and having a
fairly active social life. Then when I came home it suddenly dawned on me that
now I was a graduate with no job, I was single again, I had to move back in
with my parents and my social life was gone like that.
On my birthday in December, things came to a halt for me
when a bunch of my so called best friend/oldest friends cancelled on my big
birthday night out, making ridiculous excuses to as of why they couldn’t come.
So I decided to refer back to my little ‘say yes to everything’ method and made
some changes at the start of this year. The first thing I did was push the bad
people out of my life. I found this hard because it was my oldest friends who I
had known since nursery who were constantly cancelling on me and not being good
friends at all. I’d let it slide so much because I’d known them for almost all
my life and didn’t want to throw that away, but after my birthday I decided
enough was enough. So whilst I did that, I began making more of an effort with
those friends who I wasn’t necessary close to, but who had always been there
for me. I realize now that they were my real friends all along. I cut contact
with my ex and finally managed to move on from him and at last I am dating
again. I am also for the first time ever enjoying being single! And of course,
I began saying yes to everything!
Since this year and saying yes to everything I have
celebrated New Years Eve in Paris, became close friends to some ‘real’ friends,
gone on some amazing nights out, finally went back up north again – for the
first time since July – to see my uni friends and have met loads of new people.
Over the next few weeks I am starting snowboarding lessons, going on dates,
going paint balling, teaching myself how to play the drums and continuing mine
and my friends weekly date to the cinema and Pizza Express with Orange
Wednesdays! Then, finally, later this year I am going to Bruges and Amsterdam
and next year I am going to Ibiza!
Each and every one of these things has come about by pushing
myself out of my comfort zone and saying yes. Am I scared of going paint
balling? Hell yes! I’m convinced it will be painful and I’ll be very bad at it,
but it’s still something new and exciting.
The first time I took a chance and said yes since graduating
was for an old friends birthday just before Halloween. I would be seeing
friends I hadn’t seen to and spoken to in years and I even had to walk into a
packed nightclub all by myself and sober! I thought I would hate the night. I
thought I’d no longer have anything in common with these old friends and would
therefore run out of things to say, I thought I’d end up tired and wanting to
go home after a few hours and I thought my feet would end up killing me.
Instead I ended up having an amazing night with some really ace friends who I
now have plans with on a regular basis. I met new people that night as well and
I pulled a really lush barman who I ended up making out with up a tree, which
to this day I find hilarious. The only worry I was right about was that my feet
would hurt!
I knew though that, even if the night would have been
boring, I would be happy because I would have pushed myself and taken that
chance to go out. The way I’ve seen it lately is that chances are always a
win-win situation, no matter what they are, no matter how big or small they
are. Taking chances might seem daunting, but no matter what the outcome is,
you’ll always be glad you did it.
I’m so inspired by Louises story. I too am the kind of person who cancels because I’m too tired to go out – and although I have an excuse now in Jack, I used to do it when I wasn’t even pregnant! I’ve decided recently to take stock at my life and agree to more things – and I’m loving it!
Do you ever feel like you’re not taking enough chances?
xo