Aside from the set back from Storm Doris last week, the sun seems to be finally making an appearance, it is actually light when I wake up and get home from work and the temperature seems to be warming up slightly. Does this mean spring is finally creeping upon us?! I've been stocking up on daffodils to brighten the home (although it still seems to early) and starting to get into the spring mood, including the things I'm cooking. Although hearty, stodgy bakes are great comfort foods for those cold weekends when you're stuck indoors, I think you can't go wrong with citrus-flavoured cakes when we edge into the brighter seasons. I tried this twist on an old, zingy lemon recipe (found here) recently by chucking in some blueberries- I think this is my way of trying to trick myself into thinking it could be slightly healthy. Obviously, lemon and blueberries are a well-known match made in heaven, so this is a fool-proof recipe that will work every time.
Since officially moving in with Stewart a couple of months ago, I've become obsessed with decorating our flat with lovely things. Having only previously had pre-furnished student accommodation, there wasn't too much I could really do to make give the houses those warm, personal touches and make it truly feel like 'my own'. Since getting our flat, we've been able to start from scratch, buying our own furniture which reflects our personal tastes and those finishing decorative touches you can only really get once you're settled. We keep adding little things bit by bit and we are slowly getting there- it definitely feels like 'ours' now, but we still have further to go in really putting our stamp on the place. As we continue this home-decorating journey, I thought I'd share some of my favourite places to by those cosy homeware pieces on a budget- let's face it, after the cost of moving, those decorations need to be as money-saving as possible!
You may have seen the latest launch from Rimmel all over social media recently. Their new range of powders claim to be the latest innovation in brow make-up, offering a 3-in-1 service that allegedly gives you 'brows like Cara'. Now, Ms Delevingne is famous for her thick brows, possibly single-handedly kick-starting our obsession with having the perfect brows, so that is a bold claim! Available in four shades, the clever little pots of powder blend in with your natural hairs to help sculpt, fill and define. Whilst this sounds great and I'm sure work wonders for those with hairs for the powder to blend with, how do they fare for people with no brows?
There are two beauty-related moments in my life that have completely changed my 19 year relationship with trichotillomania. The first was the discovery of false eyelashes aged 15; the second was having my eyebrows tattooed in January 2016 by Sian Dellar. It sounds sad, but these beauty epiphanies have completely changed my life for the better. Those of you who have trichotillomania might understand this; those moments that make you feel as though there is light within the murkiness of the disorder, that provides a glimpse of hope, that makes your life with hair loss tons easier. For me, microblading was one of these profound moments. I finally had brows. Not only that, but they were brows that looked completely natural and that I didn't have to worry about. One year down the line, they are still there (although much more faded) and as I look to my top up appointment, I've been thinking about the impact this procedure has had on my life.
For a while now, I've been experimenting with differing recipes using protein powder. I absolutely adore baking (as you might have guessed), but with a gym-obsessed boyfriend with a sweet-tooth who moans about the amount of sugar and fat I'm tempting him with, I decided to try and find alternative 'healthier' recipes. Switching up ingredients for healthier versions is fine, but when it comes to baking with protein powder, everything just goes wrong. There's something about it which just makes the texture take a turn for the worse, not to mention the taste of chocolate flavoured powders within baking! After having a search around online, I found this recipe which I have made the tiniest tweaks to. The results? Finally a baking recipe including protein powder which doesn't make me look like the world's worst chef! With Valentine's Day coming up, I put a romantic twist on these and cut them into heart shapes (heads up- these make a great thoughtful little gift for any gym-loving partners in your life!), but any other time of the year, just cut into squares and enjoy.
Whether you are looking forward to it, dreading it or couldn't care less, there's no avoiding the fact that Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Corny cards are on shelves, roses are being fully stocked and beauty launches are aligning themselves with the most romantic day of the year. Although I love the thought of putting some time aside for your loved one and having the excuse to have a proper date night (you can check out my top date ideas here), Valentine's Day itself is a bit of a commercial gimmick. That said, I can't help buying into this trend; the pretty, pink, sweet beauty ranges are right up my street and too irresistible to walk by. So, why not use it as an excuse to show yourself some love. You're amazing and we all need treats every now and again! Here's my pick of the lovely Valentine's themed beauty launches that are all under £6; there's no reason not to treat yourself with these!
Although we're now in February and positively thinking that winter is nearly over, it seems as though it is still getting colder by the day! I'm currently wearing my thickest winter coat, big cosy scarf and gloves whenever I decide to venture outdoors; add to this the dreary rain and you've got yourself a recipe for awful British, cold weather. Whilst some of you may see this bleak temperature as an opportunity to snuggle up under a blanket with a mug of hot chocolate (cream and marshmallows on mine, thanks), I personally can't wait until it starts getting lighter, sunnier and warmer- not least because of the havoc this chilly weather is causing my skin! Not only do I need to reach for the extra nourishing night creams, but my lips get so sore, red and dry with the slightest drop in temperature. If you're anything like me, cold months call for heavy duty lip balms, so here are a few of my favourites.
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