27 February 2018

2018: February Favourites | Body Butters & Shower Gels

February has been crazy busy and I don't have too many favourites this month but regardless I thought I'd share with you anyway.

'A nourishing daily moisturiser for most but particularly beneficial for people with dry or sensitive skin and specific skin conditions.' Big fan of this product and it's what I used on my dermatitis right up until I saw my GP. This product can be used to moisturise any part of the body which is what I love most. 

I got gifted a bunch of bits and piece from the Body Shop over Christmas including a gorgeous Body Butter and Shower Gel. They were both in there limited edition Christmas scents so I would imagine you could purchases them now but regardless of the scent, which is freaking amazing, I adore their Body Butters and Shower Gels. They have the best selection of scents so there's definitely something for everyone.

I mean, this product has been my life saver over the past few weeks I couldn't not talk about it in this post. If you've read my 'Minimal Makeup and Skincare' post then you'll how much I love this product. It has no harsh chemicals or any artificial colours or perfumes, it doesn't clog pores and of course it light and moisturising. It is exactly what I needed and I'm so pleased with how it's working with my skin. 

I don't normally talk about favourite polishes on my website but I'm currently loving this shade. It's a gorgeous light pink shade and looks stunning on either your finger or toe nails. The formula of Sinful Colours polishes are really lovely and the shoe range is great too. There's bound to be something for everyone. 

What are you favourites this month? 

Much love, B x 

25 February 2018

Highlights From The Past Month | February 2018

It's the end of February, we've had two cyclones, I'm ready for Winter and I'm ready for this month to be done and dusted. With that all being said, there were still a couple of highlights from the month that I can share with you today. 

Driving Lessons
I'm about ready to get my restricted and I've been doing to few lessons here and there to make sure I pass. I'm looking forward to all the new opportunities having a licence will bring. And yes, I'm 19 nearly 20, and am only just getting my restricted but dude, life ain't got any rules and I'm living a life that makes me happy. 

If you read my all about my 'Minimal Makeup and Skincare' then you'll know I've had a breakout of dermatitis on my face. It's been sore, dry and gross. Now it's being treated with antibiotics, it's starting to finally clear up but it's still going to be a long road to keep my skin clear. My skincare is super minimal at the moment and I'm not bad about it. I'll link the post here if you're interested in the products I'm using at the moment. 

With only a couple of highlights this month, it shows that my month has been very mundane, which it has. I've been working on my website and other projects which has kept me busy. Hopefully by this time next month I'll be able to share a lot more with you all. 

Much love, B x 

22 February 2018

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green | Book Review

"'It's quite rear to find someone who sees the same world you see.' Sixteen year old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Picket, but there's a hundred thousand dollar reward at stake and her best, most fearless friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickets son, Davis. Aza is trying. She's trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever tightening spiral of her own thoughts."

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green was gifted to me for Christmas. I had heard a bunch of great things about the book and was excited to dive into it. My overall thoughts are that it's a great book, it's not hard to follow at all which makes it the perfect easy read and the storyline leaves you wanting to know more. 

If you have loved any of John Green's previous novels then I'd say you'd very much enjoy this one as well. 

Much love, B x 

20 February 2018

Everyday Minimal Makeup & Skincare

Everything has become very minimal in my makeup and skincare routine lately because of a horrendous breakout of dermatitis below my nose and chin. I've had to go back to the basics and I'm not bad about it at all. This breakout of dermatitis is something I've never experienced before and as someone who has always looked after there skin, it kind of freaked me out a little. Despite the dermatitis, life still went on believe it or not so these are the products I've been working with over the past couple of months.

This should really be no surprise to anyone. I've loved and used this stuff for years now. It's great for several different reasons. It's gentle enough for daily use, it removes oils without over drying the skin but also because tea tree has antibacterial properties it's great for the prevention of blemishes. 

It's important to note that I haven't been exfoliating my skin as much as I use too, not around the dermatitis anyway. I don't want to irritate the skin anymore than it already appears to be but I will gently exfoliate maybe once a week just to clear any extra build up in my pores which isn't good for the healing process of dermatitis. I've used St Ives products for as long as I can remember and they have an amazing range of products that I think are definitely worth checking out. 

Simple skincare products are great because they don't contain any harsh chemicals, artificial perfumes or colours that may up set your skin. When I asked my doctor what she recommended I used to kind up face hydrated while the dermatitis healed, she suggested something that wouldn't clog pores and didn't have any of the nasties. I immediately thought of the Simple skincare brand. I know how great their products are from using them before and knew that they didn't have the chemicals or perfumes. So far, using this product on my face has keep the dermatitis hydrated and help prevent flakiness. I definitely recommend the Simple skincare brand. 

This combination of products is what I have been using when it comes do achieving fuller brows. You should all know by now my obsession with the Natio Brow Kit, I've talked about it for years but thee Chichi Brow Pomade is new to my collection. You could 100% use the pomade on its own but I'm still getting use to using the product so I like to combine both so I don't end up with what looks like black caterpillars on my face. Both products give a gorgeous look, separately or together. I really don't have anything bad to say about either of them. 

The only mascara I have been using lately is the Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara. I actually don't have words for this mascara. I just freaking love it. It gives my lashes a thick, curved and volumising appearance. I truly swear by this mascara. 

Much love, B x

18 February 2018

My Workspace For Productivity

I tend to switch up my workspace every 4-6 months. This can be from the smallest thing like changing up desk decor to replacing my desk candle or it can come in a larger form such as moving around bigger furniture pieces or completing reorganising and decorating. I've always viewed change as a positive, a good thing but I know not everybody views change like that. I truly believe that change has a variety of benefits on several different areas of our lives. 

My workspace is pretty basic but it works well for me. The notebooks you'll see on the left hand side of my desk are used to website post planning and scheduling. I prefer to have them sitting on my desk because that way they're easily accessible. Next I have a few pieces of decor. A marble 'X' ornament, a fake plant, a candle and a essence burner. On my desk I also have a place for any lose papers that need to be kept easily accessible, a bunch of note paper and the sticky notes I'm currently using in my planner. The simply gorgeous pen holder holds some of my favourite pens, a pair of scissors and a ruler, just the basics. You may also notice that in the bottom right hand corner I have an oil defuser sitting on my desk. I was gifted this at Christmas time and I love it. I've wanted one for the longest time and it's definitely something I try and use on a daily basis to help clear the air. 

I'm loving my workspace at the moment and because of that, I'm feeling super productive. It's a minimal but functional space which is right up my alley. 

All the main stationary pieces were brought at Kmart and decor pieces from the Warehouse. You definitely don't need to spend a crazy amount of money, if you don't want to, to achieve a simple but functional workspace. 

Let me know what you have in your workspace that helps increase productivity!

Much love, B x 

15 February 2018

Twenty Eighteen 'To Read' List

2018 is going to be the year where I read a lot more than I ever have before. I've always loved reading but for whatever reason, for a long time I've just told myself I don't have time to read. In reality, I do have time to read and I really just need to actively make time for it. Below, I've got links to all the books so far on my 'to read' list and a little blurb about each book.

"A beautiful love story and contemporary fairytale set against the backdrop of the Iraq War, this stunning and moving novel will break your heart, only to put it back together again. This is the story of Lina, a teenage girl from Bahgdad. It starts 2003. as the bomb begins to fall on the city. In it, Lina fights to survive, to find what happened to her mother in the years before the war, when she was taken aways by the secret police. She also falls in love, with the one person she should never have fallen in love with."

"The Fifth Letter is about four best friends on a relaxing vacation that turns devastating when old secrets are revealed, long-held grudges surfaces and a shattering betrayal is discovered that shakes the foundation of their lives. Best friend's from high school, Joni, Deb, Eden and Trina had always looked forward to the vacations they spent together. But the demand of their careers, husbands and babies, gradually pulled them apart. Joni doesn't want to lose her friends and this year she's coaxed them all back together for some fun at a beach house. A fun game which meant to bring them together turns painfully serious, exposing cracks in their lives and their relationship. A rocky marriage, a harrowing addiction, a hidden pregnancy and a heart breaking diagnosis, but which secret belongs to who?"

"To five year old Jack, Room is the world. It's where he was born, it's where he and his Ma eat, sleep, play and learn. At night his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits. Room is home to Jack but to his Ma, it's the prison where she has been held for seven years. Through her fierce love for her son, she has created a life for him in this eleven by eleven foot space. But with Jack's curiosity building along side her own desperation, she knows the Room cannot either much longer."

'You're not shy; rather, you appreciate the joys of quiet. You're not antisocial; instead you enjoy recharging through time alone. You're not unfriendly but you do find more meaning in one-on-one connections rather than large gatherings. By honouring what makes them unique, this astute and inspiring book challenges introverts to 'own' their introversion, igniting a quiet revolution that will change how they see themselves and how they engage with others."

"A collection of essays spanning politics, criticism and feminism from one the most watched young cultural observes of her generation. These funny, insightful essays, Roxane Gay, takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman of colour while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years and commenting on the state of feminism."

"In Almost Adulting - perfect for budding adulting, failing adults and eaters of microwave brownies. Ardent tells you how to survive adulthood. Topics including, making cool internet friends, healthy relationships and sex. By the end of the book you'll have learned not only how to dress yourself, how to travel alone, how to talk to strangers online, how to date strangers in person but also how to pass as a real, functioning, appropriately socialised adult.

"An honest exploration of a young womens soul and road trip through Italy, America, Paris and Derby. Becoming is a book that makes you laugh and makes you cry, but most of all? It makes you realise that even when the going gets tough no one is really f**king up like they think they are."

"Full of spirit and unselfconscious enthusiasm, Ice Cream For Breakfast: Child Like Solutions to Bullshit Adult Problems, is the permission slip all too-grown-up-for-their-own-good-but-secrelty-scared-of-adulting, adults need to locate their inner child rested deep within, so that we might relax enough to laugh harder, wonder more and marvel at magic on the daily."

Let me know if you'd like to see a review and my opinion on any of the books above. 

Much love, B x 

13 February 2018

Remember This When You Don't Feel Good Enough

I came across a post not to long ago that inspired this post I’ve written today. Not feeling good enough is so mentally draining and is something I think we can all say we struggle with now and then, I know I do. But what do you do to get yourself out of that rut? If you’re struggling at the moment or maybe are looking for some tips for the next time you’re feeling down on yourself have a read below. They’re just  things I like to remind myself when trying to bring myself back from feeling like I’m just not good enough. 

We All Struggle From Time To Time
 We all struggle from time to time whether we like to admit it or not. We all experience moments of self doubt and sometime I think it’s good to remind ourselves that even those we love and admire most go through the same self doubt thought process. As much as we’d all like to move through like constantly progressing and moving forward, it just not realistic. 

Celebrate Other Peoples Success But Don’t Let It Dampen Yours
It’s so important that we learn how to be happy for others while not letting it dampen our own successes. Even if your success isn’t the same level as yours doesn’t mean it’s an less incredible. Half the time we realise we’re jealous before even knowing what we’re jealous about! Being happy for someone is so simple and such a wonderful thing. 

You’re Doing Just Fine
If I’m going to be honest, I’m always telling myself that I’m doing okay. We don’t give ourselves enough credit for what we’re doing. But in reality we’re all doing the best we can in our current circumstances. We’re so focused on moving forward and bettering ourselves we often forget about all the incredible things we’re doing in the present moment. 

Much love, B x

11 February 2018

A Gentle Routine For When Looking After You

After looking at my post schedule for the month of February I’ve realised that the majority of this months posts are self care based. Of course, unintentional as I prefer to mix up my content from month to month and chat about anything and everything but I really think the way my post schedule has turned out for this month speaks volumes about how I was really feeling at the time of putting it all together. 

I had a few events going on in my life at the end of January that I perhaps didn’t want to confront but had to anyway. My conscious mind was telling me that I was okay, coping with everything pretty well and to continue on with everyday life. But, subconsciously it was a little bit different. Subconsciously, I wasn’t okay nor was I coping. I needed to take a step back, look after myself and reconnect with me. 

I apologise that the majority of this months content is self care/self love based but it’s something I’m passionate about and I write about it in the hopes that you guys will take some much deserved time for yourself to relax and look after number one, you. 

I have a routine in place that perhaps isn’t so intense, doesn’t have too many time limitations, is flexible and full of all thing I love for those times that are just for me to do whatever the heck I want. 

 I love the shit out of candles and there is quite possibly at least one candle in every room of my home. I find candles so calming. They’re the perfect wee decor piece in any room and you can get some really beautiful scents that can make any room a peaceful room.

When I have some time to myself I like to take the opportunity to catch up on some of my favourite TV series. 

Bubble Baths
I’m always having bubble baths, especially when it comes to having some time to myself. I’ll use a Lush bath bomb, have a few candles lit and take some time to reflect and think about the random bits and pieces floating around in my mind. 

A cup of tea solves everything, right? I try to avoid coffee if it’s late at night so alternatively I’ll have a cup of hot tea. There’s just something about a hot cup of tea that just sits well inside me and makes me feel all cosy. 

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a magazine but I try to make time for reading. I love reading but it’s one of those things I have to actively schedule time for otherwise it kind of gets forgotten about it. 

Nothing feels better than a fresh face. I’m a bit of a nerd when it comes to skincare and definitely have a product for anything and everything. I’ve always been vigilant with my skincare. My mum taught my little sister and I to look after our skin from a very young age and that’s what we’ve done. Skincare if definitely a big part of any routine, whether it’s morning or night, for me so this routine is no different plus it makes you feel fantastic. 

Much love, B x 

8 February 2018

What Is Self Care To You? | My Favourite Self Care Products

What is self care? 
"The actions that individuals take for themselves, on behalf go and with others in order to develop, protect, maintain and improve their health, wellbeing or wellness." @selfcareforum

Self care means something different to all of us but to me it is about taking time to look after myself so I maintain a good overall wellbeing. 

Why do we practice self care? 
From the definition above, it's clear that it's important that we all practice self care to maintain good health and wellbeing. Self care means we'll have greater control over our overall health, and helps put healthy behaviours into practice. Self care can benefit us all. 

Self care is such an important part of my daily routine. I don't always have time to spend a full day to myself but little practices every day help me keep balanced and grounded until I do have that extra time to spend on myself. 

My Favourite Self Care Practices

Sleep: Sleep is huge and getting a good 8 hours sleep is so important for me to ensure that I have a productive day. But not only that, sleep is the time my body takes to heal and rest, that's important to me when it comes to looking after my body and my health. 

Gratitude: Being grateful for all the little things that happen on a day to day basis is great for our mental health. Okay, we might of had a really shit day but we got to and from work safely, it was a beautiful warm day and you're healthy. Those kinds of little things can really help shift your mind set. 

Diet: Diet plays a big part in how I'm feeling physically but it's also looking after your body. Feeding it those foods that are going to nurture it and well make you feel great as a result. 

Fitness: Working out is one of the best ways to clear your mind. I love the way you feel after working out, mentally and physically. Working out is other self care practice that I think is a great way to shift your mind set and make you feel great again. 

Step Away From Work: Leave work at work. Try not to bring work home with you, leave it at the work place. If you work from home set yourself a routine so you know when to stop working, start unwinding and do things for you.

My Favourite Self Care Activities

Bath/Shower: When it comes to taking time to myself I'll usually start with having a bubble bath or a shower. You always feel great after having either a bath or a shower. I'll shave, exfoliate, wash my hair, all those things that make you feel refreshed.

Makeup/Skincare: Skincare is a necessity when it comes to self care. If it's after a long day, I'll take off my makeup, put a face mask on, cleanse, exfoliate, all that good shit just to really pamper my skin. If I'm taking a day to myself or maybe it's just the morning and I feel like putting makeup on then I will. I love having the time to sit down and do my makeup so if that's something I feel like doing then I will. 

Fresh Flowers: Nothing makes me more happy than seeing fresh flowers sitting on my dinning room table. Fresh flowers always just brighten up a room so every now and then I'll have a fresh bunch of flowers in the house somewhere. 

Podcasts/Books: I love to read and listen to podcasts but struggle to find time to do so in my day to day life. When it comes to taking time to myself I make sure that a chunk of that time is dedicated to either reading or catching up on my favourite podcast. 

Beach/Nature: Getting out into nature, even if it's just my backyard is really calming. If it's a beautiful I'll go to the beach but there's just something about being in nature that is calming and great for centring yourself. 

Yoga/Meditation: Last but definitely not least is yoga and meditation. I can't talk about yoga and mediation enough. It's something you can do when you get home after a long day and it's going to instantly make to feel calm and centred. Yoga and meditation is probably one of my absolute favourite self care activities. 

What are some of your favourite self care practices and activities? 

Much love, B x 

6 February 2018

I'm Grateful and Thankful

The past week has been a rollercoaster of emotions and if you saw last Tuesday's post, linked here, you'll know why. My mind was all over the place, in a place I didn't really want it to be. I knew I had to start focusing on the good, the things that I'm thankful and grateful for. To do that I started to write down what was currently making me happy and it turned into the following. 

Warm Weather
We're currently in my favourite season of the year, summer. Summer is the time of the year we can get outside into nature and explore. Warm summer weather always uplifts me and makes me happy. 

I'm so thankful and grateful for the beautiful country I live in. I'm surround by nature everywhere I look and New Zealand is full of some of the most beautiful places. I"m always at the beach in the summer. It's like my second home. 

Writing has been a big part of 2018 for me so far. I find writing so therapeutic. Putting pen to paper and just subconsciously writing whatever comes to your mind at the time can be a great way to de-stress and get shit off your mind. 

I'd love to get into photography more in 2018 and so far, it's going pretty well. Photography is a great way of expression but I love how it captures moments that you'll never experience again. 

Adult Colouring In Books
Odd, I know but colouring in is one of my favourite things to do when it comes to having a bit of time to myself. I loved to colour in when I was younger and nothing has changed. 

Mediation and Yoga
Mediation and yoga is a big part of my routine at the moment. It's one of those things I've done very once and while, it's been in and out of routines but this time I'm really sticking to it. It's one of those things everyone says is good for you but until you try you don't really believe them. Highly recommend. 

Much love, B x

4 February 2018

Bright, Bold and Beautiful | Lipsticks

To me, summer screams bright lipstick shades but of course, you can rock bright lipsticks shades whenever the hell you feel like it. These are some of my favourite bright and bold lipstick shades in my lipstick collection. I've tried to link everything where I can but finding exact colour matches on a few of the online sites proved to be more difficult. Maybelline, site linked, have an incredible range lipsticks with various shades, some similar to those that I have mentioned. 

Now that's all done with lets get to my favourite bright and bold lipsticks. 

Delivers a burst of bold colour and a surge of creamy texture for the creamiest matte look.
Brighter colour from our exclusive vivid pigments. Creamer feel from nourishing honey nectar.
Provides high charge of colour and coverage. Ultra precise tip ensures even application. Plush fibres for the smoothest feel.

Specially formulated to glide on effortlessly like a gloss and set with a rich cream colour and velvety touch of matte lipstick. It's long lasting, lightweight and lusciously soft. Like all Body Shop Makeup it's also cruelty free and vegetarian too.

Let me know your favourite bright lipsticks, I'd love to check 'em out. 

Much love, B x 

1 February 2018

Grief: One Year Later

Three days ago marked one year since we lost one incredibly beautiful woman, my Nan and it still hurts like did one year ago. As the days have gone by I've learnt to live my life without my Nan and Pop by my side. I don't really know how I've managed to get through the last year but a big thank you goes out to my friends and family. I can't thank you enough, for listening, for supporting and for loving me when I didn't really know what to do with myself. Losing someone you love so dearly breaks you in ways you could never imagine. 
I'm always thinking about the events, lessons and experiences that came out of the 29 January 2017 and there are still times, one year later, that I don't know how to deal with the fact that I watched my Nan come off life support or that I watched my Pop take his very last breath and that I had to ring family to either say get your butt to Blenheim because she might not make the night or he passed away an hour ago I'm sorry you didn't get to say goodbye, just to name a few. I think about that shit so often to the point where I don't know what to do with myself. 
One year later, I still have the shitty days, angry days and days where I feel lost but through all that I've learnt how to have the good days too. I remind myself of the love they had for each other and those in their lives. 
There's not time limit on grief. It's one of those things that sticks with you forever. You'll have good days, you'll have bad days and you'll have days where you think it's a good day but next thing you know you're crying because who knows why. You've just got to ride the rollercoaster that grief throws you and take one day at a time. I'm not going to say 'it gets better' or 'it gets easier' because I'm not convinced it does but what I do know is that as the days go by you'll grow and you'll learn how to deal with the grief. You'll learn that it's okay to have bad days and not everyday is going to be easy. You'll learn to deal with it whatever way is right for you. Grief isn't the same for everyone. 
Nan, I love you so much and you were one special lady to so many people. I miss hearing you voice, your laugh but most of all I miss your hugs. I know the angels will be looking after you up there, you're probably doing their gardens or baking them some shortbread. I miss you everyday and I will for the rest of my life. 
Much love B x