29/11/2015

♥ Feel Good November: Five Indoor Activities to Relax ♥


New Sunday, new Feel Good November post! Today, I am sharing with you five ideas perfect for your weekends or days off, if you want to relax and have some me-time. Let's start then!

~ Do some colouring to relax and de-stress ~ 


You may have heard about adult colouring books already; in fact you may own one too! Colouring books have been very popular these past months, and of course I loved the idea immediately and had to get myself one. There are colouring books about everything you could imagine, from animals, to Indian or Asian patterns, to sea life and forests, and fairy worlds... I've even seen a Star Wars and a Tom Hiddleston colouring book - and for the latter, this is the most awesome thing ever if you ask me.
My colouring book is one of the 'most famous' and classical I believe. It is the Secret Garden book, by Johanna Basford. It is full of beautiful illustrations of flowers, trees, intricate leaves, birds and butterflies, curious doors and lost keys... it is just stunning, and J. Basford's work is very creative and leads you in a wonderful world. I can spend entire evenings colouring away, and it is indeed very relaxing! Put on some calm, soft music, don't forget a cup of hot tea near you, and there you have it: a nice, laid back activity!

~ Tidy or decorate your home ~


This is a classic one, but it has to be mentioned! Home decorating is a really fulfilling activity, especially around that time of year because you want to add cute autumn (and then Christmas) details to your place, and often a well-organised, cosy room is the best way to feel accomplished and happy when you spend some time indoors.
There are no rules for that activity. Just get rid of that pile of clothes that needs ironing, throw the old, dead flowers away, put away the nail polishes that have been around in the kitchen (?!) for weeks now... and then, once everything's neat and tidy, add a new blanket, cute little cushions, light a warm-scented candle. The last step? Enjoy that peaceful and tidy atmosphere then!

~ Have a pamper/bath time ~


Every cosy home time should involve a good bath. If you don't have a bathtub, you can still have a pretty good pamper session featuring all your favourite body butters and face masks! 
If like me, you love a good bath in the autumn/winter time, then you might consider going into Lush and picking up a bath bomb or two... the close-up that you have in the picture above is of the Frozen bath bomb, it has silver glitter and turns the water an amazing blue colour.

I've read that some people find baths annoying because they get bored very quickly, but grab a book or a magazine and everything's settled - or if you're afraid of getting your books damp (which I am, even though I choose to take the risk), watching an episode of your favourite TV series is quite nice too!

~ Bake an easy recipe (or a complicated one if you're really motivated)~ 


Cooking is not one of my hobbies, but I do love to bake once in a while. I know lots of people like to bake, and some bloggers share wonderful recipes that makes your mouth water. So if baking is what you're into, then it is a nice activity to get into on a day off at home. I like to bake cookies or muffins, because they're quick recipes that don't take a lot of ingredients and a lot of time. There's nothing better than baking something and being able to eat it directly, as the cake is still warm!

~ Snuggle up in bed with a good book ~ 


This is one of my personal favourites! Reading is always a good option, especially in the evening. Whenever we can, we should all switch off our screens and leave the Internet for a couple of hours. Just take a nice book, one you enjoy, or one you've been willing to read for a while but haven't started yet; grab a cup of tea or hot chocolate, and get into bed. For a top-level relaxing experience, spray some lavender extract on your pillow. This will make you feel relaxed, and help you sleep later on! What's your favourite book to read when you want to have a quiet, peaceful time? :)


I hope this post inspired you to find some things for your cosy days at home! What do you like to do during these days off?
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25/11/2015

♥ Review: BB Seaweed Fresh Mask by Lush ♥


As promised in my Lush haul, I've been waiting to use this mask for a few weeks before reviewing it for you. I picked up the BB Seaweed Fresh Face Mask almost at random, I just read a few positive reviews and went for it. Here is what the website says about it:

'Created especially to care for sensitive skin, BB Seaweed is a best-seller for its soothing, smoothing effects. No surprises here, it’s packed with none other than the ocean greenery itself! Seven pounds of it in each batch, in fact. This locally-harvested, nutrient-rich seaweed nourishes the skin, while finely ground almonds ever-so-gently exfoliate leaving skin perfectly smooth. We use a generous helpings of aloe vera gel and rose absolute to calm and soothe sensitive spots, and a gorgeous combination of honey and olive oil to moisturize. You look beautiful, BB!'



And actually, this is exactly what it does! This is a very gentle mask, that will soothe your skin and give it moisture. Every time I use it, I am amazed at how soft the texture is. It almost feels like apply whipped cream to your face, I thoroughly enjoy the process. Because the texture is so rich and creamy, you don't need to use much product each time. The bits of seaweed are soft too, and provide a gentle cleansing effect. If you're looking for a proper scrub, you should not go for this mask as it is more targeted as sensitive skins I'd say.
The only downside to this was that unfortunately, this mask is too moisturising for me! I have oily skin, and I wanted this mask to keep my skin from dehydration in the colder months. I think I was planning too far ahead, because as it's not really cold yet, my skin isn't in much need of moisture. As a result, my skin tends to get oily more quickly when I use this mask than when I used the Love Lettuce mask for example. This is a personal thing however, and I love this mask nonetheless because it really does what it says on the box and I know it'd work perfectly for me this winter.

So if you have a rather sensitive skin, in need of moisture and gently cleansing, then this is the one for you! Also, the skin looks so bright and clean and pretty when you wash it off, it is quite amazing I have to say!

Have you ever tried the BB Seaweed mask? Do you have a favourite face mask for this time of year?

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22/11/2015

♥ Feel Good November: My Pamper Evening Essentials ♥


What would a feel good November be without a good old pamper evening? I love pampering sessions, it's the perfect 'me time' to relax after a long day of work. There are some unmissable steps in every pampering routine, and I love trying out new products all the time to see which scents, which formulas I like best. In this post, let me share with you my favourite essential products of the moment!


~ Shower Gel: Cottage, Strawberry and Mint: I very rarely use the same shower gel twice, because there are so many on the market and it's not a product that I put of lot of thought on. However I do care about the scents of my shower gels. This one was given to me as a birthday gift and the strawberry and mint smell is amazing! I don't know if the brand Cottage is available in other countries, but if you get the chance and see these in the shops, just have a sniff! There are many different scents, and I can tell you they are all wonderful.
~ Shampoo: Dove, Advanced Hair Series, Pure Care Sublime Oil: first off, let me tell you about the smell of this shampoo. It. is. incredible! I've never had any shampoo that smelt so good before. If they made this scent in perfume form, I'd totally wear it. This range is fairly new I think, I'd never seen it before and people don't seem to talk about it too much. But it is a really good shampoo, that makes your hair very soft and shiny. Great value for money!
~ Bath: Lush Bath Bombs (here, the IntergalacticBath Bomb): I've put one bath bomb in the photo, but actually Lush bath bombs in general are my ultimate bath essential. I haven't tried this one yet and it's the last one I have, but it smells super minty and will look lovely in the water I'm sure! My favourite Lush bath bomb is the Twilight one. Pop a bath bomb in your bath, add some bubbles and you're ready to go for the most relaxing moment ever!
~ Face mask : Lush, Love Lettuce: this is my favourite fresh mask from Lush, from all those I've tried. I've already reviewed it on the blog; so I won't repeat myself but this mask is exfoliating, brightening, mattifying and refreshing. It makes your skin look amazing, and the lavender scent is really relaxing.
~ Nails: Maybelline Dr Rescue All in One//Barry M, Gelly Hi-Shine nail polish in Chilli: some people hate doing their nails, but I really enjoy the whole process (when the nail polish doesn't take too long to dry, otherwise it gets annoying!). The Barry M nail polish in Chilli is a beautiful brick red that's perfect for autumn. At the moment my base coat is this Maybelline Dr Rescue, which is quite good and cheap. As a top coat, it makes your nail wonderfully shiny!

~ Scent: Ted Baker Body Spray: I couldn't find the exact name of this body spray as Ted Baker has a few different scents out, but remember the cute little packaging of this one and go smell it i  Boots! I can't describe it properly, but it is very feminine, and quite 'grown up' without being too musky and loud. As it's just a body spray it doesn't stay on for hours and hours, but it is a nice one to spray as you get out of the shower to feel fancy!

What are your favourite products to use during pamper evenings? What is your favourite step to do?
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14/11/2015

Terrorism can't win.

On Friday night, horrible events happened in Paris. You'll have heard all about it, some things that are true, maybe some others that aren't. Even we, French citizens, struggle to understand it all and know for sure what did happen and what did not. We don't know exactly who is dead and who survived, people are missing, families are suffering. This is something that we did not think would happen last night - but the threat and atmosphere of non-safety is not new to those who live in Paris or commute there every day. After the events of January, we thought things could not sink into horror even more, but we are reminded now that it can. And will, probably. Let's not pretend that a war is not going on, it has been going on for a while before, not only in France but also in other countries who are fighting against the Islamic state right now. These attacks are the first success of many other attempts, I'm sure, at wounding the heart of the country - its people. 
I am sad, I am numb, I feel helpless and my heart aches for all the people who died, those who lost a loved one in these attacks, or who are injured and hoping to recover. At the same time, I am so thankful for still being alive and well, able to think, and write, and stand firm to oppose the terrifying ideology that lead to these attacks. I am afraid, so scared that anything could happen again, and that I, or anybody I know, could be a victim of acts of terrorism. Our President, François Hollande, has declared that this is war. Measures will be taken, actions will be done, and us civilians cannot do anything but stay, support, not lose our minds, and be hopeful. This is the beginning of tough times, in the whole world. For months now, we've all felt a shift in how these worldwide conflicts are going. But eventually, terrorism will lose its strength because a hateful ideology like that cannot win, it cannot lead the whole world because we are millions who will stand for freedom, humanity, respect and love. Today, we are all as one people, as one person, and if you go in the streets, if you look around, all you'll see is love and support. As it should. And as it will always be, because ultimately we can't live in fear and hatred, we don't want to and we'll fight not to.

I won't be posting until I'm feeling better, and until France recovers (if we can recover at all, which is a sad euphemism). I'll just ask you to spread love, strength, solidarity and, no matter where you are, stay safe and alert, because we never know what will happen next. Don't fall into hatred, don't blame Islam. Just live and love. Let's hope that in the end, everything will be alright and that all wrongs will be punished.

*

Toutes mes condoléances aux familles des personnes décédées, courage aux blessés, courage à Paris et à la France, à nous, son peuple, et à ses dirigeants qui gardent la tête haute. Aux forces de l'ordre qui nous protègent et qui sont prêtes à agir à tout moment. Gardons espoir, ayant confiance en l'avenir et ne cédons pas à la Terreur. La France résiste.

11/11/2015

♥ All Saints Day 2015 ♥

Dress: La Halle aux Vêtements (French)
Boots: André
Bag: present from my lil' cousin
***

On All Saints Day, the first of November, my (big) family gets together for a day at my grandma's house (this is actually her garden, which you'll see in many posts because it is a convenient place to shoot outfit photos). I think it comes from a Portuguese tradition that celebrated our dead, but we've shifted away from that and now, it is just an occasion for us to spend some time together. So there I was with my brother taking these pictures for me - I've never seen a better ten-year-old fashion photographer! - while my uncle was lighting a fire, for our annual roasting of chestnuts. I'm not a fan of chestnuts myself, but I can't resist having a few of them when they're warm and roasted. As you can see the leaves are getting more and more yellow, and they kept falling as soon as you touched a branch of the tree. Now that is what I call autumn!
I've had this dress for years, but for some reason I don't wear it a lot. I do love it though, burgundy is one of my favourite colours and I love this shape. Actually I had many compliments on it that day, so I'll definitely be wearing it more often!


I'll add a few photos of our chestnut roasting tradition below, just because I couldn't resist taking some photos of that afternoon - for memories.


Do you have any such family traditions? Are there some special occasions you share with your loved ones?
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These basically look like small human brains don't you think?

08/11/2015

♥ Feel Good November: My Favourite TV Shows! ♥

As part of my Feel Good November series, there's nothing more appropriate than talking about TV shows! Watching an episode or two of my favourite shows, snuggled up in bed, is one of the things I love doing when it gets too cold to stay outside. Everybody loves a good TV show! And there are so many out there, of all genres and stories, that it can be hard to choose which one to watch. I have to admit I particularly love British shows, more particularly period dramas. Today I'm going to share five of my favourite series to watch!

~ Downton Abbey ~


Downton had to be mentioned in this blog post! I've been in love with this series for years now. You must have heard about it already, and you probably love it too, but let me sum it up for you: the show is all about the Crawley family, Lord and Lady Grantham and their three daughters, who live at Downton Abbey, in Yorkshire. Set in the early 1910s and going up to the late twenties as the series go, we follow the lives of the family and of their staff at the big house. 
The scenery and costumes are amazing, as you're watching you only wish you'd be there too. The actors are great - need I mention Lady Maggie Smith? - and the characters portrayed are all very different and loveable, you get attached to them quickly and want to know what's going to happen. This year is the sixth and last season, and I can tell you I'll be sobbing during the last episode!

~ Sherlock ~


Ah, Sherlock... I love this show so much, and I'm dying to see the new season! Set in our time, this show is inspired by the well-known Sherlock Holmes stories written by the brilliant Sir Arthur Conon Doyle. I love the books, so at first I was a little bit sceptical about writing it all again in our modern times... But it works so well! The storylines are really good, and all based on some of the original stories, but of course with modern twists and characters. Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock Holmes) and Martin Freeman (John Watson) are the best, they couldn't find better actors to play these parts. Each episode has a lot going on, with plot twists and suspense all the way. They're like mini-films, so they're perfect for a night in. There are three seasons with three episodes each at the moment, and the Christmas Special is out on the first of January 2016. Who else is excited about that?! ;) 

~ Grantchester ~


This show had been in my watching list for a while before I actually started watching, but when I did, I simply couldn't stop! There is only one season out yet, but a new season is on the way and that makes me so happy.
Grantchester is a little village near Cambridge, where Sidney Chambers (James Norton), the vicar, steps into the world of murder mysteries without really planning it, as unexpected murders happen around him and as he decides to help the victims and their family to reveal the truth. The show is set in the 50s, so expect beautiful costumes and a wonderful, English village scenery. The episodes are quite short and easy to follow, and I'm sure you'll fall in love with Sidney Chambers as I did (well, I guess it has a lot to do with James Norton being really handsome haha). The show is not at all strict and focused on religion even though the main character is a vicar, and this is great.

I don't think it is a well-known show, so have a look I'm sure you'll love it!

~ Poldark ~


I know, another period drama... I'm sorry there isn't more diversity in this selection haha, but I'm being true to myself - and these are all great shows anyway!
Poldark is adapted from a book series by Winston Graham. It is set in the second half of the 18th century in Cornwall and is all about Ross Poldark, who, when he came back home after the American War of Revolution, had to take up his family's mining business. This show is full of wonderful actors, I particularly love Eleanor Tomlinson as Demelza and Ruby Bentall as Verity. I love how the show is filmed, Cornwall is amazingly beautiful and it'll make you want to go there immediately. Aiden Turner is great too, although I do find that they could do with less shirtless scenes. Not that I mind seeing this handsome man half naked, but sometimes it does make it seem like they're doing it on purpose! :P

~ Vikings ~


Let's move away from British drama for a bit, and focus on our Scandinavian neighbours, whom Vikings is (obviously) all about. Produced by the History channel, Vikings is directed by Michael Hirst (who created the Tudors too). It tells the story of a Viking settlement at the end of the 8th century, centered around the farmer and future king Ragnar Lothbrok (the mesmerising Travis Fimmel), the legendary Nordic hero. As you follow the life of his family and friends, you follow the Vikings on their discovery of England and how they tried to conquer these new territories. The series is full of epic battles, political conflicts and more emotional relationships. There are plenty of interesting characters, my favourite being the badass (and gorgeous) Lagertha (Kathryn Winnick) and the twisted shipbuilder, Floki (Gustaf Skarsgard, who does a great performance here). If like me, you don't know anything about Vikings and feel like you're stuck in poor clichés, you'll be surprised as you're watching this; the show (from what I've heard, quite spot-on in terms of accuracy with the Vikings' customs and lives) will make them appear much more human and real. This is my best discovery of 2015 in terms of TV shows!

What are you favourite TV shows to watch on cosy days in? Leave me your recommendations below, and of course tell me if you've watched any of these! 
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04/11/2015

♥ My Favourite Autumn Makeup Products ♥


Winter is coming, and soon we'll be invaded by sparkly red and gold makeup bits... So I thought I would talk to you about my autumn favourites before it's too late! These are the makeup products that I've been using the most these past two months or so. Lots of browns and warm shades, because this is what autumn makeup is all about for me!

~ Naked Palette 1, Urban Decay: this is an oldie but a goodie! The Naked palette 1 is my favourite of them all, but I particularly love it during the autumn time. All the shades are brown and gold-toned, so they are perfect for this time of year and will follow me through winter too. My favourite for autumn have to be Smog and Hustle. They work great together, but also separately as a single eyeshadow look. 
~ Jumbo Liner 12h Wear, Sephora (n°15 Purple): on the more purple side of things, I love this jumbo pencil from Sephora. The colour is wonderful; a dark purple with gold shimmer. I mainly use it as a liner, but you can also apply it on the whole lid and blend it out for a nice eyeshadow finish. Eyeshadow pencils are great because they're often creamy and last a long time on the eyes.
~ Single Eyeshadow, (n°80 It Bag), Sephora: another brown eyeshadow! Sorry, but I just love this colour too much for eye makeups. this is one of the shades I used in my autumn makeup tutorial (click here to see it!), and again I love using it for my everyday makeup looks. 
~ Dark Side Lipstick, Mac: I've been talking about this lipstick way too much this autumn I think! This deep burgundy colour looks amazing with a toned-down eye makeup look. It works during the day as well as for a night out look, and it stays on for hours. 
~ Mat Velvet Lipstick (shade 612), Kiko: as you can see from what is left in the bullet, I've been using this lipstick a lot! I've had it for a couple of years though, this is why I've almost finished it. It is a dark nude pink, 'my lips but better' colour. The finish does look velvety somehow, it is matte but not drying at all. One of my favourite lipsticks ever!
~ Blush & Brush (n°3 Upper East Side), Beauty UK: this blusher was featured in my autumn makeup look too. It is a dark pink with pretty glitter in it, and I use it a lot in the autumn. I prefer darker pinks rather than rosy, 'doll' pink blusher at this time of year. I can't remember how much it was (in Superdrug) but it was quite cheap, and the quality is very nice!
~ Nail Polish (Knebworth), Nails Inc.: this is a very pretty nude colour, but quite hard to describe - it has mauvy, grey-ish undertones, and it is quite unique I think. You can have a good colour in two coats, and this works so well at any time of year to be honest, but I do love wearing it more in the colder months.

~ Nail Polish in Paradoxal, Chanel: on a darker note, I love this beautiful dark purple colour from Chanel. It looks so chic and sophisticated on the nails, and again in two coats you're good to go. The only thing is that this nail polish gets chipped so quickly! For Chanel, I was quite surprised about that. But the colour is so stunning, I've almost finished it and I'm so sad about it!

What are your favourite products for autumn? Do you have any particular makeup items that you've used a lot?
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