Slimming World Sundays #4​

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I thought it was about time for another Slimming World update. I’ve been doing Slimming World now for 12 weeks, and there has been many ups and down along my journey. As you know, I started Slimming World again to help lose weight before my wedding next year and I wanted to give myself plenty of time to make sure I didn’t put myself under too much pressure. From experience, if I become too strict with myself on sticking to a diet (or should I say healthy eating), I generally end up giving up quite quickly and putting the weight back on with interest…!!

So how am I doing? Well, I got my 1 stone award!!

Like I said before, I’ve had lots of ups and downs to get here but I am over the moon that I have reached my first stone lost! The ups are mainly down to how easy the plan is – if you’re organised. I have found on my successful weeks, I’ve manged to stick to plan because I have done some prep at the beginning of my week; writing a meal plan, doing a weekly food shop and prepping my breakfast and lunch for work the night before. Sounds simple, right? Well, my downs are generally due the weeks where I’ve been very hectic with life or work (which is more of a regular occurrence at the moment) and my organising/prep goes out the window! But there is another reason I’ve had my down weeks too that I thought it was important to share….

If you’re not familiar with how Slimming World works (aside from the food plan), it’s a weekly meeting where you get weighed and then you can stay for a group meeting lead by the SW group leader where everyone can discuss how their week was, sharing tips or recipes to generally make you feel inspired for the week ahead. Well, my other downs on my SW journey have actually come from feeling like a bit of failure after the weekly groups…!

I’m not going to take this time to put down my SW group leader because she is great but I just feel her approach to motivating people isn’t for me. There was a period of time when I would have either stayed the same weight or gained either ½ or 1lb generally because I was having such a tough time in my personal life so it was hard to stick to plan. Her reaction would either “you do know this is a weight lost class, don’t you” in a jokey fashion, or if I had lost 1lb one week which I was pleased with but she would say “that’s good, but your weekly target was to lose 2lbs…”. I completely understand this is just her way to push you to success but I’ve found I don’t work well with the almost ‘tough love’ approach. If you’ve had a bad week it takes a LOT of courage to stay to group (especially if you’ve been going through a tough time outside of SW) and by staying it means you are trying to do your best rather than just quitting. Unfortunately, this is something I think my SW leader sometimes forgets.

And the reason as to why I’m sharing this is not to put my SW leader down, it’s to acknowledge that you need to do what work’s best for you. There is always a huge importance to stay to group but if your group doesn’t make you feel good or inspired then its ok to not always attend, or find another group. There are massive success stories in my SW group, so her approach does work for some people but it’s important to remember its a personal preference. It might be sometimes worth visiting another group and see what another SW leader is like because they each have their own different ways.

Personally, this is the only group I can attend so I won’t be swapping groups but I have decided to only attend group if I’m in a good head space. If I’ve been having a crappy, low week, I know that’s it’s probably not a good idea to attend to group because I will take everything that is said very personally. My advice is, listen to yourself and do what feels right for you. Just don’t give up, because you can do it 🙂

Have you been in a similar situation? What did you do?

The Sleek Face Form Contouring & Blush Palette

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If you saw my Boots Haul (link here) a couple of weeks ago, you will know that I picked up the Sleek Face Form Contouring & Blush Palette along with the Sleek Cream Contour Kit (review coming soon!). I picked it up because I thought it was a nice little palette for everything you need for your cheeks – blush, bronzer/contour and highlight!

First of all, I really like the packaging. It’s a really nice sized palette which is compact enough to keep in your makeup bag whilst the pans for all three products are big enough to dab a makeup brush in. Another big bonus as well, is that is comes with a full sized mirror in the lid of the palette.

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As for the products inside, the bronzer is matte, so it’s perfect to use as a contour or as a bronzer. The shade is ok too as it’s not too dark or muddying looking. The highlight and blush however is quite shimmery. To begin with the highlight, I like a good highlight to add definition to your cheek bones but I would prefer more of glow rather than a streak of glitter on the tops of my cheeks. It’s too bad however if you use this highlight with a high hand. The blush again is quite shimmery so another one to use with a light hand but it is a lovely coral shade, so perfect for these summer months.

Overall, I’m impressed with the Sleek Face Form Contouring & Blush Palette. Although can be quite shimmery, it a good little companion to have in your makeup bag if you’re going on holiday because it will save packing three separate products. At only £10 , it’s a bargain too!

Have you tried the Sleek Face Form Contouring & Blush Palette yet?  What are your favourite cheek palettes?

A Book Haul

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I’ve always been a bit of a book worm. It’s something my Nan always used to call me because I would always have my nose in a book when she looked after me on school holidays. One of my favourite past times were visits to the library with my Nan or we would go and rad the charity shops to find the hidden gems often found in their book shelves. Nowadays, I don’t get time to read as much as I would like to but I’m usually never on the train without my Kindle or an audiobook. My Kindle or audiobooks are really convenient but I have to admit that I do miss holding a real book, which is why I decided to treat myself to a selection of books I’ve had my eye on.

I don’t particularly have a favour genre in books, but I often enjoy books which are easy to read like Y.A.books. I especially like these books when I’m the train because I find the journey and other passengers on board sometimes quite distracting, so I need something easyto follow. I therefore picked up All The Bright Place by Jennifer Niven and Beautiful Broken Things by Sara Barnard. I had heard a lot of good things about these books and loved that Beautiful Broken Things was set in Brighton. I have a personal goal to read more books set in Brighton because I have only been living in the Brighton for just over 18 months and it can be a lovely way to learn more about the city. I also picked up Billy and Mil by Giovanna Fletcher which again, I’d heard a lot of good things about plus I absolutely love Giovanna Fletcher (married to Tom Fletcher from McFly) so wanted to start reading her novels.

One of the best books I read last year was Gone Girl by Gillian Fylnn. I often like getting my head stuck into a thriller novel as it makes for something different and gripping to read. Fellow fans have all said that if I liked Gone Girl, than I would really like The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins. So when Waterstone’s was selling The Girl On The Train for half price a couple of weeks ago, I picked it up straight away. Only thing is, I’m a little scared to read it considering I spend most of my life on a train travelling to London and back for work…

The last book in my haul is Quiet by Susan Cain. This was a book I’d had my eye on for a while now. It’s a non-fiction book all about ‘The Power of Introverts’. I’ve always been very much an introverted person and I think it’s fair to say it’s previously been considered a negative trait. Since however listening to a couple of podcasts (Girlboss Radio, Ladies who Lunch, to a name a few) and listening to other introverts it becomes clear of an introvert’s strengths. Keen to learn more, I finally added Quiet to my book collection.

Have you read any of these books? Do you have any other book recommendations?

Got 5 mins? Sanctuary Spa Thermal Detox Mask

   

I love a clay mask! My favourite being the Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask but it can be a little pricey at £24.00. Although I have to admit it’s totally worth the money, I really wanted to find a cheaper alternative – I’m trying to save the pennies at the moment for my Wedding!

Roaming the aisles of Boots, I discovered that quite a lot of brands were now bring out their own clay masks which is amazing and I’m going to make it my mission to try them all and report back. This time however I settled on trying the Sanctuary Spa Thermal Detox Mask. Reason being it was on offer at £6.67 (rrp. £10) but loved that is was a thermal mask.

The Sanctuary Spa 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask is a clay based face mask to cleanse and purify your skin. The self-heating mask warms the skins once you apply to your face and starts to open up your pores. The charcoal and kaolin clay then helps draw out impurities within your skin. It also contains soothing and calming myrrh oils which leaves your skin feeling cleansed and super soft. The thing I love most about this mask is that you only have to leave on your skin for 5 minutes to feel the benefits, which means it’s so much easier to incorporate in your skin care routine. It’s also non-drying so it doesn’t feel uncomfortable on the skin either. Rather than using it as a daily cleanser, I tend to use this more of a mask 1 to 2 times a week and I’ve found it’s helped to balance and calm my skin a the while keeping any spots or blemishes away – win win for me! 

 

If you’re new to clay based skincare, I would definitely recommend  The Sanctuary Spa 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask as an introduction to clay masks, plus it doesn’t break the bank either.

Have you tried the Sanctuary Spa Thermal Detox Mask before? Is there another other high-street clay face mask you would recommend me trying next?

Powder – A website for beauty junkies!

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So last week I came across an amazing websites which I wanted to share with you all – www.thisispowder.co.uk. Powder is beauty recommendations website, brought to you by amazing brands such as Marie Claire, InStyle, Wallpaper and Look. It’s a website that allows you to answer questions about your beauty regime and needs, then it matches you with best beauty products for your skin type, hair type, colouring etc.

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Once you join Powder, you can head over to your beauty drawer and there you will find every beauty product imaginable, whether it be; foundation, lipstick, cleanser, shampoo, facial oil – you name it, it’s probably on there. As you click on each beauty product, you will be asked a series of questions from your skin type, skin colour, problem areas, personal style, etc and then it will generate a list of recommendations based on your answers – clever right?! And the best bit I think, is that you can set a budget of how much you want to spend on said product. Generally they will offer 5x spend brackets depending on the type of product – under £10, £10 to £20, up to a large bracket of £80+ (for example). There are so many times where I don’t want to spend £30+ on a new cleanser, but I still want a cleanser which will help my problem areas – Powder can give their best recommendation whilst keeping in your budget – how great is that?!

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From there you can then store all of your personal tailored recommendations in one place and you have a shopping list ready for when you want to try something new. It means you now don’t have to spend hours going through tons of beauty blogs, reading magazines, trawling the beauty aisle and also wasting money (hopefully!) to find a product that you can afford and that will do the job you are looking for it to do. The website will also update your personal feed, based on your tailored recommendations, to keep you up to date on all the latest beauty launches, trends and tips.

Powder have also extended their service from the website and now offer a physical beauty drawer. Similar to a beauty box, it’s a box full of the latest and highly recommended beauty products. It comes with 12 beauty products, 6 of which are full sized, worth £120+ and all yours for £35. I’m a little tempted…!

So next time you’re on lunch break and flicking through the Daily Mail celeb gossip (admit it, we all do it!), why not start building your personalised, beauty recommendation list on www.thisispowder.co.uk

Sign-up (it’s free!) and let me know what you think!

Another Boots Haul…

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Why is it that when you go into Boots for just one thing, you end up coming away with a lot more than you intended?! Classic example happened to me last week when I popped into Boots on my lunch break to pick up the Sleek Cream Contour Kit which I had my eye on for a couple of weeks (did you see my beauty wish list? Find it here), but all of a sudden I had my hands full with all sorts of beauty goodies. Here’s what I ended up picking up –

Sleek Cream Contour Kit & Sleek Face Form Contouring & Blush Palette – As you know if you saw my beauty wish list a couple of weeks ago, I had my eye on this for a while so as soon as pay day hit I picked it up. When I reached the Sleek section in the makeup aisles, there was an offer of buy one product, get one half price – well it would be rude if I didn’t take advantage wouldn’t it?! As I was picking up a contour kit, I wanted to get some sort of blush palette however they had all sold out. Instead I opted for the Sleek Contouring and Blush Palette. Bit excessive on the contour products I know, but I thought this was a really nice little kit which has a powder contour, highlight and blush all in one – perfect for travelling!

Soap & Glory Pillow Plump Lip Gloss – I have a lot of matte lipsticks in my makeup collection which I love, but sometimes I’m looking for something a bit glossier. Rather than buying new lipsticks, I can just add a clear gloss over the top on matte lipsticks for the same desired effect. Now, I haven’t brought a clear lip gloss since I was at school (remember the days where you could only get away with wearing clear lipgloss at school – ha!), but fancied trying something that could maybe enhance my lips. I therefore opted to give the Soap & Glory plump gloss a go. These glosses have something in the formula which makes your lips tingle and buzz to make your lips appear more fuller. I’ll let you know if it really works…

Ecotools Precision Blush Brush – I picked this up as my Real Techniques expert face brush fell apart for the third time…really not happy, but more on that another day! So I needed a similar style brush but wanted to trying something from another brand. I then found this down the makeup brush aisle.  Its similar to the expert face brush – same kinda of density, fluffiness only it’s more of an oval shape rather than a rounded brush. It does however do the job of applying my liquid foundation which is great but I think the shape of this brush will also be perfect to use with my cream contour palette too!

Denman Dressing Out Brush – I used to have one of these brushes years ago when it was really popular to back comb your hair (think Amy Winehouse beehive days!) and although I’m not looking to massively back comb my hair, my hair is currently looking for flat as its due for another haircut. I thought I would pick another one of these brushes up again, just for those days when I’m looking for a tad more volume.

Have you tried any of these products before?

Pop Up Shop in Brighton – The Maker Club

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If you love homeware, fashion, art and gifts and you’re in Brighton between now and 12th July, I urge to go and visit The Maker Club pop up shop in Brighton.

It’s full of beautiful piece from 6 makers – CloClothes, Miss Papercut, Mcindoe Design, Prints Harry, Freddie Payne LDN and Common Thread UpholsteryCommon Thread Upholstery.

The lovely Chloe from CloClothes invited me to come along to the pop up shop. She has some wonderful accessories and women’s clothing all with beautiful, fun prints. All the pieces are handmade by Chloe and a couple of freelance seamstresses making everything limited edition, with no more than 5 of any design repeated which is amazing! I’ve definitely got my eye on few things include some gorgeous sunglasses which I’ll be picking up next weekend!

The Details:

Location: 114 Church Street, Brighton BN1 1UD

Open: Mon to Sat – 10am to 6pm / Sun – 11am to 5pm until 12th July 2016

 

Go and visit them and say hi!