Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Healthy Snacking with a Busy Lifestyle

Are you a serial snacker? I do my best to maintain a healthy lifestyle; exercise regularly, eat healthy meals...but then I spot a snack and it all goes down the pan. Sound familiar?

The office is definitely my biggest danger zone as we seem to be inundated with birthdays (hello cake Fridays) and treats from colleague’s holidays.

Luckily by going to a lot of fitness related blogger events, shopping around and doing some research I have found some healthy alternatives to my naughty snacks.

GoToMeeting, a meeting software provider, has also put together a handy guide with their recommendations of top snacks to boost energy – perfect for the mid-afternoon office slump!

So instead of reaching for a biscuit next time you’re feeling peckish, why not try some of their suggestions – such as Kale Chips, for a healthy dose of iron and vitamins, fruit and nuts, a homemade smoothie, yoghurt, or, if you can stand the stench, a hard boiled egg!

What are your favourite healthy snacks?

London Fitness Classes You Need to Try

Monday, 29 August 2016

Day to Night Pink Lips with Urban Decay

Urban Decay Vice Lipstick

Urban Decay Vice Lipstick

Urban Decay Vice Lipstick

Urban Decay has just launched the ultimate lipstick collection. Whether you prefer a matte, creamy, sheer or shimmery finish, they have you covered - with practically every shade under the sun available. The Vice lipstick collection (£15 each) comes in 100 different shades and six different finishes (Mega Matte, Comfort Matte, Cream, Metallized, Sheer and Sheer Shimmer) .

From bold brights to versatile neutrals and some brand new shades, there is so much variety. Each lipstick is highly pigmented and nourishing on the lips. The sleek, metallic casing has 'Urban Decay' embossed on it and looks super classy! While I would love to own all 100 shades, my bank balance doesn't allow that right now. So I have started my collection off with the below two instead, which have become handbag essentials for taking me from day to night.

Friday, 26 August 2016

My Fake Tan Routine

Fake tan; it's one of those things you either set aside an entire evening so you can meticulously apply it, or just some slap some on before bed and hope for the best. In the past I've fallen into the latter category but I've now learnt that the right preparation and maintenance can make all the difference to your tan. So here's how I prepare, apply and look after my self tan:

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Practice makes Perfect - Working on my swimming skills with Fitness First

I have never been a good swimmer. Running, dancing and cycling I love but for some reason I never naturally took to the water as a child and struggled to learn to swim. So while most kids were jumping into swimming pools in their pyjamas to reclaim bricks from the bottom (damn that looked so fun) I gave up once I got my 50 metre badge.

So when Fitness First in Hammersmith asked if I'd like to come along to a swimming workshop hosted by world triathlon champion Richard Stannard, you would have thought I'd shy away and decline. But actually I thought this would be a perfect way to try something new and try to build up my confidence back in the water. Plus with the Olympics on at the moment everyone is an ambitious sporting mood!

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

My Top Summer Fragrances

I've never really been a perfume person. My mum adores perfume and seems to wear a different fragrance every week, whereas some people have their signature scent they can't live without - and it will always remind me of them whenever I smell it. I on the other hand have never really bothered with perfume because I used to find it too overpowering or it would give me a headache. Then, after a little experimenting, I have finally settled on some that are just right for adding a hint of fresh, sweet-smelling fragrance...

  • Rituals The Ritual of Dao Bed and Body Mist - When an Eau de Toilette or Eau de Parfum is too heavy or overpowering I often opt for a body mist instead. I love these sprays from Rituals, which also double up as a room or linen spray (may seem odd but it works!). This contains White Lotus and has an invigorating scent.
  • Bronnley Pink Peony and Rhubarb Eau de Toilette - Pink Peony & Rhubabrb is the latest scent collection from Bronnley and it is perfect for summer! I love the pretty pink floral packaging and the bottle itself is very dainty and elegant. The scent itself is quite classic and floral - it reminds me of rose petals with a sparkly white musk fragrance.
  • Soap & Glory Orangeasm Fragrance Mist - Soap & Glory scents are by far one of my favourites and this orange range is a zingy take on the original S&G fragrance. Again, it is a mist rather than a perfume so I much prefer it for daily wear and the fresh, citrussy scent helps me to wake up and feel ready to take on the day!
  • Korres White Tea, Bergamont and Freesia Eau de Toilette - If you haven't yet heard of or tried anything from Korres yet I recommend trying them out! They are a Greek brand and all their formulations are based on natural ingredients. I am a huge fan of their skincare and shower gels, which smell incredible! This perfume is invigorating thanks to the bergamont and freesia, while White Tea makes it indulgent and slightly sensual. I love this sweet-smelling perfume and the bottle itself is simple and timeless - plus it's handy for travelling.

Have you tried any of these perfumes? Let me know your favourites so I can check them out!

Monday, 22 August 2016

A #MiniMexican evening with Old El Paso

It is a little known fact that I love Mexican food (I once went to Wahaca four times in one week...) and I often try to recreate the deliciousness at home with the various different kits from Old El Paso. So I jumped at the chance to visit Old El Paso's Mini Cantina on London's Southbank this week to celebrate the launch of their mini Stand n Stuff tortillas.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

The Body Shop British Rose Eye & Cheek Palette

The Body Shop British Rose Eye & Cheek Palette

The Body Shop British Rose Eye & Cheek Palette

The Body Shop British Rose Eye & Cheek Palette

The Body Shop British Rose collection is a timeless range of sweet-smelling skin and body care. To complement the range, Body Shop have also introduced the limited edition British Rose palette; six eyeshadows and two blushes with rose tones and smoky hues for a daytime glow.

A flick of the small square case reveals a large mirror on one side of the compact and the powder shades on the other - making it perfect for travelling!

The thing I like most about the palette is the soft, muted pink tones - very classic - and the eyeshadows have a very slight shimmer to them while the blushers are sheer matte. The blue tones are more suitable for the evening but I prefer to use the pink shades for my daily makeup. They aren't overly pigmented so are more suited for someone looking for a natural look.

The British Rose palette (£20) is a really pretty addition to my makeup collection and the rosy pink blushes perk up my skin on a drab rainy day!

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Summer MakeUp Favourites

Ah the British Summer...I don't know if it's time to accept that the good weather in England has been and gone or just hold out in hope that more is on its way? Either way, all the time I'm wearing sandals to work instead of boots and bravely leaving my umbrella at home I'm not complaining!

I find that many of us have a rotating stash of makeup for Summer/Winter and as soon as the sun comes out so does the lighter foundations, coral shades and sunkissed bronzers! Here are just some of the products I have been loving these last couple of months...

  • Urban Decay Beached Bronzer - If anything for the packaging alone which transports me to a tropical paradise! The bronzer itself is perfectly sheer while warming up my skin
  • Roadial Skin Tint Tinted Moisturiser- I'm not usually a fan of tinted moisturisers as I find they are usually a dodgy "One shade suits all" colour or the formula just doesn't sit well on my skin. This is unlike any tinted moisturiser I have tried before and has much fuller coverage, similar to a foundation, while still feeling lightweight on the skin
  • Stila Aqua Glow Serum Concealer - A liquid concealer that is perfect for the eye area as it is hydrating and brightening. It is ultra-lightweight and comes in eight different shades!
  • Loreal Color Riche Lipstick - The perfect moisturising lipstick this feels more like a balm while still delivering a subtle neutral pink. Shade 256 Blush Fever is my favourite for everyday wear.
What are your favourite summer makeup picks?

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Should You Get A FitBit?

Wearable fitness trackers are an increasingly important part of workouts at the moment as people are becoming more interested in the exact length of their workout, calories burnt and peak fat burning zone. But do they actually make a difference to your workout? And are they worth the price tag?

With so many different fitness trackers on the market there are plenty of options to choose from. I recently tried out the Fitbit Charge HR (£119.99) - a wristband that monitors heart rate as well as daily step count and fitness activity.

Some of its key functions are...
  • Tracks steps, distance covered, calories burned, floors climbed, active minutes and heart rate
  • Simplifies heart rate into coloured zones so you know where you should be aiming for 
  • Automatically recognises when you start exercising (or you can just hold down the button on the side to start recording) and logs details in the FitBit phone app 
  • Doubles up as a watch and you can set up caller ID from your phone
  • Tap the button on the side to easily view your updated progress
  • Monitors your sleep 
  • Syncs wirelessly to your phone
  • Battery life of up to five days
What was it like using it?
  • The FitBit itself is very quick and easy to set up, as well as the mobile app. Once I started wearing it I found it was very lightweight so I didn't feel like I had it on, although it was subconsciously in the back of my mind which helped me to stay motivated
  • One of the big questions people ask about fitness trackers is how accurate they are. As someone who is sat at a desk typing all day, I worry that it will count my wrist movements as steps when in fact I haven't moved at all. Luckily I found that the FitBit is very accurate and didn't add on any rogue steps!
  • One of the most interesting features for me was looking at my sleeping pattern and monitoring how much sleep I got each night
Did it help me stay motivated?
  • Yes! Sometimes I can get lazy and not be as active as I should be - but without actually being shown how lazy I'm being and the effects of it it is easy to ignore! FitBit sets you a daily step goal and by looking at the wristband throughout the day you know how near or far you are to that goal
  • I found I was encouraged to make even the smallest of changes to my daily routine to help increase my daily steps - walking up the escalators, getting off the bus a stop early and going for a walk on my lunch break
  • When you hit your step goal the FitBit will buzz a couple of times on your wrist and you get a notification on your phone so you can do a little celebratory dance inside! You also get notifications your completing a continuous streak of exercise so it motivates you to carry on exercising in the long run.
Overall I think FitBit's are a great investment and well worth the money! Have you tried any fitness trackers? Let me know your thoughts!

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

My Favourite Face Masks

1. Rodial Glamoxy Snake Mask (£68) - A black peel off mask that decongests and brightens skin while helping to reduce the look of fine lines. This works as a great detox mask when my skin is oily and generally unhappy!

2. Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque (£28) - An instant brightening facial that energises the look of dull skin. I like to use this as a quick fix to perk up my skin before an evening out or event. It is made with tumeric and cranberry seeds that gently exfoliate and invigorate skin.

3. Korres Wild Rose Peeling Mask (£26) - I love this mask as it is full of lovely stuff! Wild Rose is high in Vitamin C that helps to repair and protect skin. This corrective peeling mask works deeply to peel away dead skin cells and improve radiance, but unlike other peeling masks it is a lot more gentle!

4. La Roche Posay Hydra Phase Intense Masque (£16) - This comforting mask is like a giant drink of water for dried-out skin. It hydrates, soothes and makes the skin feel a lot more comfortable. Contains hyaluronic acid as well as thermal spring water so it is ideal for sensitive skin.

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Working out on Water With Aqua Physical

AquaPhysical at Haymarket Hotel

AquaPhysical at Haymarket Hotel

AquaPhysical at Haymarket Hotel

AquaPhysical at Haymarket Hotel

Imagine an intense workout of planking, squats, burpees and lunges...all while trying to balance on water! Floatfit is a class from AquaPhysical that gives you a full body workout - while floating. I'd seen their outdoor classes in London pools pop up on the internet and was desperate to go along but they had all sold out. Luckily they are doing weekly sessions every Saturday morning at the Haymarket Hotel until 10 September.

The Haymarket pool is lovely with soft pink lighting and twinkling lights on the ceiling, you could almost be fooled into thinking this would be a relaxing experience...this was not the case! Instead we swum out to our boards and after practising sitting and standing on them it was then time to crack on with the 30-minute workout of jump squats, planks, crunches and running on the spot on our boards - all while trying to hold our balance and not fall in! The water definitely added an extra element to the workout as we were all trying desperately to use our cores to not topple over. There was a lot of wobbling and sliding around (although I managed not to fall in!) which made the whole thing such a laugh!

After the class had finished and we'd dried off it was then upstairs to the Haymarket's restaurant for Recovery Brunch where we had endless options to choose from as well as free roam of the breakfast buffet - any calories I had previously burnt were immediately put back on!

AquaPhysical's floatfit class at Haymarket Hotel costs £30 (including brunch). Book here!
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