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Mani Monday – Purple Tips

There is a definite purple theme going on with this week’s manicure and as you can see, I had quite a few options…


I started off with three thin layers of Nails Inc’s Manor House Drive. This is part of their ‘The New White’ range and always looks really crisp and clean.

I decided to use two purple chrome-effect nail varnishes on the tips in diagonal sweeps of colour. My nails aren’t that long at the moment so I did use a nail art brush to draw the lines on…and even then, they aren’t all perfect!

The first shade is a Rimmel 60-Seconds shade called Magnetise which has a lovely blue tone to it in different light.


Secondly, the darker shade is a Revlon Chroma Chameleon colour called Tanzanite and I used a nail brush to apply it.

I sealed the whole thing with a layer of Seche Vite which not only left my nails with a shiny gel-effect finish but also did not blur or blend any of the shades together, which other topcoats can often do.

Sunday Summary #22


This week seems to have flown by!

My Mum was in New York this week (very jealous!) so my Dad came to stay for a couple of days. Liverpool played in (and lost) the Europa Cup Final this week and we had various friends and family over so my Dad was on cooking duty. He spent all day in the kitchen and produced the most amazing spread which included salt and pepper squid, buttermilk fried chicken, duck in plum sauce, a huge bowl of egg fried rice and curry beef…it’s great having a chef in the family!

I’ve also been going on morning runs. Just a mile or so but I feel amazing afterwards and the views aren’t bad either.


Last night, Ian and I headed out to watch the All Star Stand-Up Tour with Jarred Christmas, Gary Delaney, Pete Firman and Sean Hughes. All four comedians were very different so it was cool to watch a variety of comedic styles.


On TV, we finally finished House of Cards (it was great!) so are about to start Scandal soon. Game of Thrones has kept us gripped and one of my favourite American comedies, Veep, has started again.

I’m a few chapters in to ‘Only We Know’ and enjoying it so far – I’m planning on ploughing through a few more chapters on the plane next week, probably with a holiday G&T!

Finally, I made the fatal mistake of looking at the BA flight sale and somehow ended up booking a week in Boston in October! I have always wanted to visit the East coast in Autumn to see the beautiful colours of the trees and Boston seems a really cool city. So…we are off to Berlin next week, a mini-Scandinavian cruise in the summer and Boston a few months later – exciting times!



My favourite meal this week has to be my Dad’s football feast.

Ian also mastered making perfect margaritas so we’ve had a fair few of those, purely for recipe testing purposes of course.


I feel like I haven’t cooked anything from scratch for ages so spent a few hours in the kitchen this afternoon making an enormous pot of chili con carne which we will have with tortillas, rice and jacket potatoes for the next few nights, loaded with sour cream and guacamole of course!


Ian was at work yesterday so I treated myself to a mid-afternoon pamper session and gave myself a manicure and pedicure. On my feet, I used Essie’s Meet Me At Sunset, a bright orange-red, and on my fingernails I had a play around with some purple foil tips.

I’ve also been testing out the products from the latest Birchbox – there’s a mascara in there I really like.



I’ve decided to give off-the-shoulder tops a go. I’ve always found it hard to find a good strapless bra for a bigger chest so avoided this style. However, I’ve bought a black dress from ASOS (which I was hoping to have a picture of but Ian left the delivery at work!) and this striped top from Primark to try out.


­Beauty Review – Lash Lift

I’m not usually a jealous person but one thing my brother has that I don’t really irks me…good eyelashes! His are thick, long and beautifully curled whereas mine are short, straight, quite sparse and blonde meaning they are practically invisible without mascara.

Of course, there are certain things you can do to overcome this. I am always trying new mascaras and tend to go for anything that offers volume or a curl and I do have eyelash curlers but find them a bit of a pain to use on daily basis. I’ve also looked into lash extensions in the past but have always been put off by the idea of having to be careful with the cleansers and mascaras I can use plus they can look a bit patchy if you don’t get them ‘topped up’.

I have a really good local beautician and have been treating myself to a monthly facial or massage with her and after discussing my eyelash woes with her, she recommended an eyelash tint and lift. I always have an eyelash tint before holiday anyway so an extra eyelash treatment seemed a good idea.

After an hour or so of having various different potions on my lashes, I couldn’t believe the difference – I hope my photos do this justice!


My lash tint lasted about a month but the lash lift lasted a little longer – maybe 6 weeks or so. It made any mascara I wore look amazing and really opened up my eyes. I also felt more confident going make-up free and just loved this treatment.

I’ve already booked in to have this done again and would highly recommend it to any other ladies who aren’t blessed with naturally amazing lashes!


Mani Monday – Essie Eternal Optimist

A short post before I head off to my Pilates class tonight. This week, I cut my nails short and wanted something quite nude to wear. I picked up this Essie bottle in the shade Eternal Optimist and love the dusky pink colour. It is a lovely creamy formula and I only needed two layers on my nails. I wish I could find a lipstick in this shade too!

I decided to jazz things up with some nail gems and found these golden-orange ones included in a nail art pen. I quite like the clash of colours and these look different colours in different lights from a golden yellow to a coppery orange.

I sealed these with a thick layer of Seche Vite which usually does the trick – as always, I am hoping to get a couple of days wear from this look before the gems start pinging off!

Sunday Summary #21


It has been a good week! Firstly, we booked our flights and AirBNB for Berlin in a couple of weeks’ time. I have been well and truly bitten by the travel bug recently and plan to get into double figures for countries visited this year. We spent this morning in bed with tea looking at Berlin beer gardens and museums to visit and I cannot wait for a few nights away with Ian.

I also went to the theatre this week to watch a friend perform in Sister Act. I didn’t really know anything about this show before I went (it’s very different from the film) but the gospel-style songs were incredible and it’s a really funny musical. I went with my work colleagues and it was a much deserved break from SATs!

We haven’t really watched too much on TV this week but have been ploughing on with House of Cards on Netflix. It’s such a good series and my knowledge of American politics is expanding with every episode. I also watched the film ‘True Story’ this weekend but found it a bit dull in places.

I finished reading ‘Before I Go to Sleep’ and have just started ‘Only We Know’ for my new book group. It feels slightly strange to not just be reading for my own enjoyment but it has started well and I hope I enjoy it.


Finally, it was lovely to see these two guests in our garden last night!



I am back to eating soft food again after having my braces tightened yesterday but before that we enjoyed dinner and beer garden drinks with my brother and his girlfriend at our local pub, The Muddy Duck, after work on Friday. They do a lovely selection of craft beers and I then had the most delicious lamb dish with new season asparagus.

Yesterday, Ian and I popped into Bath and enjoyed some drinks and lunch in the sun. We had tequila  cocktails, starters of chicken wings and smoked cheese bites then some delicious fish tacos that I enjoyed so much I am making them for dinner tonight too.


Ian loves anything bubblegum scented (such a big kid!) so I bought him this shower gel as a joke but it’s actually really nice, if a tad sickly.


I’m suffering from quite dry skin at the moment so picked up this body moisturiser by Elizabeth Arden. It isn’t too heavy and sinks in quickly with a pleasant smell.


Finally, a duo that has been helping to give me a dewy yet sun-kissed look: my Sephora bronzer in Aruba and this rose-gold No7 Skin Illuminator which I have been using as a cream highlighter.


I repurchased my favourite ever sports bra by Shock Absorber in a cool electric blue and pink print. I have tried on so many recently but none seem to give enough support for us ladies with a bit more of a bust. This one is really comfortable and keeps everything in place when running.


I am on the hunt for a new gym bag and this star and tan print one is currently in the lead – it’s maybe a little too nice for my sweaty trainers though!



Latest Purchases #95 – A Summery Primark Haul

Hello and happy Saturday. I had my braces tightened today so am feeling a bit sorry for myself!

A couple of weeks ago I popped along to Primark. I was looking for a few items to add to my wardrobe which were a bit more summery…and then the freak hail and snow storms started so I haven’t had much of a chance to wear everything yet!

First up, my favourite purchase is this pale blue and white striped shirt. The pyjama-shirt look is big at the moment and this one was just £8 and is so light and comfortable to wear. I love that the stripes on the pocket are horizontal to make it stand out a little more and I think I am going to go back and get the pale pink version too as this is just so versatile. I’ve been wearing it with skinny jeans but it would also make a great beach cover-up as well.

Next, a navy top with a nice gold zip detail down the front. This is made of that lovely flowing material that is very flattering to wear and looks great with jeans.


I picked up this pretty white broderie anglaise dress for less than a tenner and it is such a cute summer dress.  It is quite thin material so I’ll need to consider my choice of pants carefully that day! I love the straps on this and can’t wait to wear this while sat in the garden with a glass of Pimms.

I’ve been wearing sweatshirts and hoodies to the gym recently and this cream one is a good addition to my ‘loungewear’. I love the print on the front and it is so slouchy and comfortable to wear.


Quite a daring purchase next and I blame the Coachella pictures that were filling my Instagram feed recently. This black jumpsuit was £12 (I think!) and the details are what persuaded me to buy this – the picture of it on the hanger really doesn’t do it justice. The little pompom and lace trims on the sleeves, legs and down the front are really pretty and add to that hippy/ festival vibe.

I picked up this oversized, slouchy top to wear with leggings. It looks really shapeless but hangs nicely and I wore it travelling recently and it is really comfortable and loose-fitting.


When I was packing for our recent Caribbean holiday, I came to the realisation that we don’t have a nice beach bag, big enough for towels. This nautical design is the perfect design and shape for me…I just need to head to a beach soon to test it out!


I always pop down to Primark’s homeware section which I think is getting quite cool. I picked up this two-wick candle and it gives off a lovely, fresh scent. It doesn’t have the same throw as say a Yankee Candle but was pleasant enough.

Fringing seems to be really popular again this season and I found this cute blue suede bag for about £5. I’ve worn this a couple of times and it just about fits in my purse, phone and a few lip products.


I don’t usually buy ‘cheap’ jewellery as my skin can react but I seem to be OK with earrings. These hexagonal ones looked really unique and I’ve had lots of compliments when I’ve worn them.


Finally, I absolutely love my black fedora and wear it constantly but I saw this camel coloured one and thought it would be a good summer alternative.


Wow – I didn’t realise I had bought quite so much but I think it’s a good mix of clothes and accessories and , being Primark, they didn’t break the bank.

Mani Monday – Double Bubblegum

Hello and Happy Monday! I’m just back from Pilates (braving cropped leggings despite the rain!) and am looking forward to a chicken and avocado burger for dinner with new Game of Thrones. However, before I inhale that, I wanted to write a quick post about this week’s nails.

I have now not bought any new nail varnish in 2016 (apart from top and basecoats) and am thoroughly enjoying shopping my stash and rediscovering some gems in my collection.


This pretty lilac/blue shade was originally from Ciaté’s Ice Cream Collection but I received it in one of my Christmas advent calendars. I love the pretty pastel shade and despite having some nail art plans in mind, once I had painted it on I decided it looked so nice and left it alone.

As with all Ciaté varnishes, I found this had good pigmentation and only needed two layers on my nails. It has so far lasted five days with only one chip which is pretty good for me! x


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