Monday, 10 July 2017

Summer Wardrobe Tips for UK Men*

The other day I was thinking about how tricky it is to put together the right summer wardrobe. When you live in the UK, you are never sure what the weather is going to do. As a result, you really need to be ready for pretty much everything. There is plenty of advice about how to put together a versatile and smart summer wardrobe for women, but not much advice on this subject for men. So,today, I have decided to feel the gap and come up with a few summer wardrobe tips that you can share with the men, and boys, in your life.

Capsule swim shorts 
For warmer days, a pair of capsule swim shorts, like the ones you can buy here, is perfect. The fact they are made from lightweight fabric means that they can easily be slipped on under a pair of jeans or joggers. When the morning has warmed up, the jeans or trousers can be removed to reveal the shorts underneath. Plus, of course, these shorts make great swimwearIn fact, if you are planning a holiday it is well worth getting your man, or boysto pack a couple of pairs of capsule swim shorts. Best of all, these versatile shorts do not take up much space in the case.

This year, chinos are very much back in style. They look good on practically any man. Now that you can buy them in a range of colours and cuts it is easy to find a style that works for practically every age group. A pair of classic five-pocket chinos is a particularly good addition to a man´s summer wardrobe. They are smart enough to be worn with a jacket for a meal in a nice a restaurant, but can just as easily be worn with a t-shirt as an alternative to jeans. The other nice thing about chinos is that they are traditionally made from 100% cotton, which allows the skin to breathe naturally. Something wearers really appreciate on the days the sun pops out from behind the clouds.

Polo shirts
Polo shirts are also traditionally made from cotton. The fact that the fabric is loose weave makes them especially comfortable to wear when it is hot. This year, men´s fashion designers have had a bit of fun with this classic. There are some really great polo shirts available, so there is no need to just wear a boring plain one. 

Long sleeved shirts
Given the fact that the UK weather is so changeable it really is wise to have a couple of long-sleeved garments on hand. A good quality denim shirt can easily be slipped on over a t-shirt and worn as an alternative to a jacket, which is great on a day whenthe weather is variable. There are plenty of nice-looking and affordable men´s denim shirts available in UK shops, right now.

hat or baseball cap
It is also worth wearing a hat. On a hot day, it keeps the sun off of the head, and if, (or should I say when)it rains stops the wearer´s hair from getting wet.

Where to get more ideas
If you have enjoyed this post, and are looking for men´s fashion tips to help your man to look as good as possible, try this article. It is all about putting together a stylish minimalist wardrobe for a man. Interestingly, a lot of the tips in the article apply equally to both sexes, so it is well worth browsing through.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Great Gift Ideas That Nobody Ever Thinks of*

We all love receiving and giving gifts. Present giving is a practice that brings great joy to everyone. The only problem is that it is sometimes hard to think of something suitable to buy, which is why I thought you would all enjoy my sharing some of the gift ideas that I have come across recently.

Pictures and photos
Let´s start with how to turn some of the thousands of photos you have on your phone into great gifts for friends and family. The process is simple. All you need to do is to choose a great photo and get it printed up in some way. It really is an extremely easy way to create a beautiful personalised gift, and it does not cost much either. For example, you can buy big canvas prints from the HelloCanvas website for less than it would cost to take your friend out for a meal in a nice restaurant. Canvas prints look great, so they are not likely to end up gathering dust somewhere unwanted and unloved like a novelty ornament would.

These days, you can have photos printed on practically anything. One of my favourites is phone cases. Everyone likes to own a unique and stylish phone, so a new case with a unique design is a great gift for a fashion-conscious friend.

Personalised makeup kits
For someone like me, makeup always makes a good gift. If you know what products your friend or family members like to use buying a few items and putting a few of them in a nice beauty case or bag makes a welcome gift. For those of you on a tighter budget, something small and pretty like a decorated lipstick case would be a good, lower cost, alternative.

Tailored clothes
A lot of people love the idea of wearing clothes that were made just for them. Yet most of us just assume that tailor made clothes are too expensive. As a result, the only time we wear an item of clothing that has been made specifically for us is on our wedding day.
Well, the good news is that more and more tailors are offering their services online, which means that prices have steadily fallen. Today, you can easily buy a gift voucher for a friend to have a tailor-made blouse or skirt made just for them. There are even a few firms out there that will allow you to design your dream dress and make it for you.

Any fashion fan would love receiving a voucher that allows them to have an item of clothing tailor-made for them. If money is tight you could always club together with other friends to buy this type of gift.

Make your own fashion and beauty gifts
Making your own jewellery and clothes is becoming increasingly popular. It takes a while to get good at it, but once you do the items you make can be wonderful gifts. Picking up good quality raw materials and the right equipment to produce professional results is easier than it has ever been, and the list of items you can make is nearly endless. 

Friday, 12 May 2017

Beauty // My Top 5 Spring Beauty Essentials

                                                                      Hey lovelies,
So we're officially in Spring here in the UK, the weather has actually been suprisngly quite nice and warm over the past few days (with a few rainy days of course). I feel like I've kind of perfected a good skincare and go-to makeup routine recently to go with the lovely weather. I wanted to share my current top 5 beauty essentials with you!

       NYX: Ulitmate Shadow Brights Palette -
NYX has fast become one of my favourite makeup brands. They just always seem to get it so right time and time again. It all started when I became obsessed with their lip lingerie liquid lipstick line and from then I just knew that they were a brand I'd keep purchasing from. This year I seem to have rekindled my love for eyeshadow and of course that meant having to purchase new eyeshadows to celebrate.

 I already own the warm neturals palette by NYX and I am so impressed with the way it applies and the lasting power, so I knew that I'd most likely have the same thoughts towards this one too. I am pleased to of course confirm this and am actually quite surprised at how often I reach for it. The colours are so vibrant, gorgeous and blend perfectly. It's actually easier than I first expected to be able to create not just night out makeup but everyday looks to.

Lypsyl: Lip Balms*-
I was kindly sent over some Lypsyl lip balms and have been testing them out over the past few weeks. I was sent a variety of the most gorgeous flavours, with my favourite being coconut and almond. The balms are all enriched with SPF15 and vitamin E and always leave my lips feeling really hydrated. This is the time of year where I have to pay close attention to my skin as if I don't treat it well, it'll get dry easily.

I wear so many liquid and matte lipsticks and they can really dry my lips out, which I know many others experience to. My top tip is always to apply a bit of lip balm underneath then go in with your lipstick as a hydrating lip balm like these ones prevent that from happening. They are such a small little product that is super easy to carry around.

KIKO: Hydra Pro Glow -
I feel like it took me forever to find a moisturiser that my skin actually agreed with. So many brands claim that their moisturisers are good for every skin type when in fact I feel like that's rarely ever true. I would say I have combination skin, it can be very dry and then around my nose and sometimes eyelids can be oily.

For the past few months I have been combining a mix of Niveas 'Rich Nourshing Body Lotion' in 'dry to very dry skin' and this KIKO Hydra Pro Glow. I felt that personally this was too drying to just use by itself but when combined with my Nivea lotion, it's the perfect mix. My skin always feels so smooth and my face always has such a radiant little glow to it.

The Body Shop: Lightening Touch -
I have a post coming up soon on The Body Shop, I am honestly so impressed with a number of their products, including the Lightening Touch. I've never really been one for concealer or felt like I needed it. A few months back I found myself browing in The Body Shop, they had a current 3 for 2 offer on and as I'd never used their makeup before, I thought I'd test out products that I wouldn't usually go for, with one being the Lightening Touch.

I can't believe that I haven't had it in my life for longer. It's amazing at brightening under my eyes and giving my appearance a little pop on days when I feel like my skin looks pretty dull. A little by far goes along way which is what we all love to hear!

Lottie London: Lip Kit -
I really would like to test out a Kylie Jenner lip kit but if I am being honest, I'm just not here for the shipping prices and poential custom charge (Sorry KJ). So have been looking for cheaper alternatives. I've been into Topshop a few times and have seen that they've brought out their own range of lip kits which is really cool and I've seen Barry M and Revolutions ones in Superdrug. While I was also there the other week (just browsing as you do) I came across Lottie London's range, I much prefered there's as I felt like they had a better variety of shades for darker skin.

I decided to go for shade 'Slay All Day' which is a kind of 'your lips but better' brown shade. It's not too drying which I was really quite pleased with and I've been combining it with my brown 'Teddy' shade from NYX to create a nice brown ombre on my lips. Lottie London is a brand that I've always seen in Superdrug but never purchased from, I am so pleased that I decided to take a chance on this lip kit as it's definitely made me want to try out other products of theirs.

Have you tried any of these products? what is currently your go-to spring beauty essential?


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

March Wishlist

Hey lovelies, I am finally back with a new post! there are so many things online and instore that I really want to get my hands on and I feel like I am really liking the spring/summer trends this year!

Untitled #44
 Pink Puffa Jacket - New Look
This year I have become so obessed with puffa jackets. I feel like there are some really nice colours around at the minute. New Look are just smashing it with their choice of colours. I remember going in a few weeks ago and seeing a really gorgeous dark blue puffa jacket with a hood that I just couldn't stop thining about, but it was whilst I was browsing online that I came across light pink colour. It doesn't really start to heat up in the UK until around May, so I feel like this would still be a good investment.

'Unicorns are real' top - H&M
 Now, I'm not really a huge fan of sloan type tshirts or anything with words on as I find that a lot of them are quite cringey. But I saw this one in H&M a few weeks back and just had to purcahse it. I just feel like at the moment I've become so obessed with anything pink and to do with unicorns.. Maybe I'm finally becoming the princess I know I was meant to be!

Skinnydip Backpack - Topshop
I have a confession to make... I've become a little obessed with black backpacks over the past few months. My local Topshop sell a lot of Skinnydip London products and they always have the best ones in store. Ally recently got me the cutest backpack from Topshop for our birthday that I can't wait to blog about. I saw this one online and just feel like it needs to be added to my collection!

Off-shoulder Blouse - H&M
Last week the UK had a glimpse of what the weather will hopefully be like in the next few weeks. It was all blue skies with the hot beaming sun and a little breeze. I definitly wasn't prepared as I rocked out of the house with a hoodie and jeans and instatly regretted my fashion choices. I am really into off-shoulder blouses and there are some really gorgeous patterns like this pink one from H&M!

Brogues* -  Women's Shoes
With better weather soon approaching I've been thinking about my footwear transition. I feel like personally that I never have the greastet footwear for the hotter days and always find myself rushing out at the last minute to find some. Brogues are one of my favourite pieces of footwear to wear - these ones really caughty my eye because of the mix of seude and and patent panelling. I'd really love to get my hands on some espadrilles too - I didn't used to be very keen on them but I've seen them styled in the most beautiful ways and would love to give it a go at styling my own pair.

What is currently on your wishlist?

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Beauty // Review: NYX Liquid Suede

Hey lovelies, Happy February! I am finally back with a new post. Life has been so busy recently with uni, work and actually having a social life.. shoutout to my friends for being friends with me! I can't lie, I've gone a bit splurge crazy recently, as if I don't have rent and a kitten to feed. So expect lots of beauty content over the next few weeks! I also just got a new lens for my camera which is the Canon 50mm f/1.8. It's taken a while to get used to but I think my attempt in this post is quite good. I've also been posting like crazy over on Instagram - come have a look? I'm @vanzthemachine.

NYX Liquid Suede - Boots £6.50

NYX has fast become one of my favourite high street makeup brands. The quality really is amazing for such cheap prices. I've previously reviewed their soft matte lip creams here and their lip lingerie lippies here. I am such a big fan of their lip lingerie line that I didn't think I'd find myself liking any of their other lipstick ranges just as much, but I've really fallen for their suede collection. There's such a big variety of colours in the range and perfect for every skin tone. Another thing I really like about the range is that a lot of the colours are quite vibrant from what you'd usually find. There are 24 different shades to choose from.

Out of the range I have four different shades which are Stone Fox, Brooklyn Thorn, Oh, Put It On and Vintage. Stone Fox is a deep grey with a blue undertone. I actually got it back in October for Halloween as I was dressed up as a zombie bunny (some would say otherwise, LOL) and I wanted a colour on my lips that would really stand out. It's such a unique colour and I really wish I had the confidence to wear it with more casual everyday outfits. I've already talked about Brooklyn Thorn in my previous post, as it was a work secret santa gift from my lovely gurl Morgan! it's a shade that I always find myself reaching for no matter the occasion. It's a browny colour with a bit of a purple undertone or if I pair it with a pink lip liner, it's more of a mink colour. 

On a recent trip to boots I picked up both Oh, Put It On and Vintage. Oh, Put It On is a really deep purple, it almost looks black in my swatch. I want to come out of my comfort zone a bit more with lipstick, so I am super excited to start wearing it. Finally, Vintage is a bit of pink, red and mauve all rolled into one. In store I didn't swatch it but thought it would be a typical red, but was really pleased as it was a lot different to how I expected, it's more lighter than I thought. It's such a gorgeous shade. Vintage and Brooklyn Thorn have to be my two favourites.

These are like your typical liquid lipsticks, liquidy upon applying then a nice matte finish. The lasting power is incredible and I find that I barely have to reapply even if I've had something to eat or drink. I still feel like NYX is really underrated in the UK, when their products are ones that people should be raving highly about. If you can, definitely get your hands on a shade or two.. I promise you won't regret it!

Have you tried any of the shades from the suede range or any other NYX products?



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