Friday, 8 December 2017

Diary of a Cosmo Intern: Week 4

So at the weekend it was my friend Becca's 30th birthday in Sheffield! I had promised to be there, not to mention it was another chance to reunite with all my Sheffield babes! I lived there for 5 years when I was at Uni, working at Topshop, and this is where I met everyone, who I am still suuuuper close with to the day, and consider them some of my best friends. The theme was Beccacassium (amazing, right?!) so it was festival theme. Small reminder, I have NEVER been to a festival so my wardrobe is hardly bursting with glitter and Hunter wellies. I wore double denim, but instead of looking like I've just landed in LA ahead of Coachella, I resembled Shania Twain/Cardi B's love child. But God loves a trier, and it was such a good night! The 4 hour Megabus back to London on the Sunday? Not so fun. (Also- managed to get a sneaky TRIB3 session in on the Saturday morning...YAAAAAAASSSS!)

The last week of my internship! I'm actually so gutted because I'm not even doing a full week, I finish on Wednesday because.... I've got a job! I accepted a job in beauty PR on Friday, and I literally start on MONDAY so I have a week to find a permanent place to live... No pressure! Another bonus, I got my eyelash extensions back so I feel human again! Before I moved to London, I was under the impression that I could get to any part of it in about 20 minutes on the tube... How wrong was I...... 1.5 hours later of bus', overgrounds and undergrounds later...


Any spare time today has been spent trawling through Spare Room trying to find somewhere half decent within my budget. Bearing in mind I have no idea which areas of London to look in, and for the price I am paying (almost double for what I paid for a massive, beautiful 2 bedroom apartment in Sheffield when I lived with my ex-boyfriend!) I am getting a small room, in a shared house, so far from the city that I may as well be back in Preston. I felt like part of my soul started leaving my body because I had spent so much time staring at tiny, messy bedrooms and pretending they were half decent and live-able. (I even paid £10 to upgrade to a premium account so I could message people straight away instead of having to wait a week) Anyway, I secured two viewings after work, and I didn't hate them! The houses themselves weren't amazing, but the potential housemates certainly made up for it- and that's what I'm more bothered about!


My last day at Cosmopolitan! My last day getting the tube to Oxford Circus, my last day walking down Carnaby street and its crazy-sequin-carnival-parrot Christmas lights, and my last day getting excited every time I see the delivery man come through with his trolley carrying PR treats. (Yesterday we had the most delicious pecan pie you have ever tasted, Gwen Stefani baubles from Revlon, a mini Christmas tree decorated with very alternative baubles- avocado, Heinz ketchup and cats, and the most beautiful bottle of 'Unicorn Tears' gin, to name but a few.) The rest of the beauty team don't even bat an eyelid because they're so used to it, but for me it's like Christmas day! I started my day in style, with a breakfast at the beautiful Langham hotel for the Chantecaille 20th anniversary. As well as getting to swatch the new collection, I met Becky Fearn- a freelance writer and we bonded over our tragic love lives...SHOCK. I left Cosmo towers that evening with a bittersweet feeling in my belly. Sad to leave, obviously, but I was on cloud 9 nine because of the invaluable experience I had gained.  Contacts in the industry, hands-on experience in the magazine industry and ...A JOB! Oh, and not to mention the biggest bag of beauty goodies EVER! *insert smug face emoji here*

Does this mean I'm an official Londoner now?

Definitely beats my microwaved scrambled eggs!
I can't believe how fast this month at Cosmo has gone! My life has changed so much. If you didn't know how I got my internship, it was basically fate. I hated my life in Wakefield, hated my job etc etc, so I quit. Life is genuinely too short to be unhappy. Then, literally the day or so after, Lucy (Beauty Writer at Cosmo) DM'ed me on Instagram to say the girl who was supposed to be starting her internship on Monday wasn't replying to her emails or confirming her start date, and was I interested in taking her place? Bearing in mind, the wait-list to intern here is over a year, so I obviously jumped at the chance! This meant I had 3 days to pack up my flat, move all my stuff back to my parents house in Preston and get a place to live in London for a month.

Now the questions that everyone has been dying to ask... Is it paid? No, unfortunately most internships aren't paid. So how did I afford to live in London for a month unpaid? My mum and dad helped me out with the financial side, which I am eternally grateful for, as I definitely couldn't have done this without them! Does it lead to a job? No. There has only been one person that has been kept on in all the years that the beauty team have been accepting interns, and that's purely down to the fact that there isn't a vacancy there. I wasn't naive enough to wait until my internship finished to , so I applied for so many jobs while I was down here! What am I doing afterwards? I have been networking the hell out of every event I've been to, connecting with PR's and staying in touch with them, and clueing myself up about the top beauty PR companies in London. I managed to secure a job within 3 weeks of being here, so London, it looks like I'm staying! I'm not even going to put that down to luck either, I have worked HARD. And so far it's paying off!

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Tinder Dos and Don'ts (Well, Mainly Don'ts)

When he has a good job, nice teeth AND is within a 3km radius.
Have a group shot as your first photo. It automatically means you're the ugly one. Also don't have a group shot for every single photo either, as well as being extremely confusing (WHO R U!?!?!), again, it automatically means you are the ugly one. LEFT.

Lie about your occupation. 'Boss' 'Model' or 'CEO' ain't fooling anyone... You're unemployed. And don't get me started on studied at 'University of Life' or 'Hogwarts'. Unemployed. Also, recently I've noticed a couple of 'non of your business!' and 'wouldn't you like to know!' Erm, yes actually I WOULD like to know, because before I even consider swiping right I need to be sure that the future father of my children is able to give them the upbringing they deserve.

Upload photos where you have those snapchat filter stars around your head. Or the dog filter. *shudders* For a start, you look like a twat, and secondly..Actually there is no secondly, you just look like a twat. And it's even worse when there's a caption attached. 'Love a fresh trim'. Good 4 u hun. LEFT.

Give me your life story on the 'about me'. Especially when it's a super cringe one about wanting 'a nice down-to-earth girl to settle down with' SETTLE DOWN WITH. Steady on there cowboy we've not even been on one date yet. Or 'looking for that girl to put a smile on my face'. Ick.

Use photos that aren't of you- cars, pets etc. I'm 25 and single. Time's ticking. I don't have the patience to be scrolling through photos of the time you went whale watching in Iceland or bungee jumping in New Zealand. I need clear, close up photos of your face. And preferably a link to your Instagram.

Wear sunglasses in every photo. It's a known fact that everyone looks good in sunglasses, and not so much without. Plus, it gives me anxiety about what could be lurking underneath. LEFT.

Include your Snapchat name in your bio. I don't want to wake up to a dick pic, thanks.

Link your profile to your Instagram page. I need more than 5 photos to decide whether I want to see you up close and in the flesh.

This ain't LinkedIn Filip.

Only communicate via gifs. Yes, one or two is cute, but when you're pushing a third and we haven't even spoke yet, I'm guessing your conversational skills are severely lacking. I'd even be thrilled to engage with a 'hi bbe u ok?' ANYTHING!!!!

List things you like in your bio. It's one thing to be physically attractive, but I need to know that we have stuff in common! Or just a funny quote. SOMETHING to show a slither of personality.

Start conversation first. Extra points if you make me laugh.

Ask for my number straight away. There is such thing as too keen, you know.

Arrange a date within the first week. I'm not looking for a pen-pal, and in my opinion, a week is enough time to gauge whether you actually like the person enough to meet up. But I would love to hear other opinions on this!

Have you had any success with Tinder? Tweet me your tales!

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Diary of a Cosmo Intern: Week 3

I'm starting this week on a Sunday, because I finally checked off another hotspot from my London bucket list! I hit Psycle London for the most intense, energising, inspiring ride of my life! Read the full review here.


Back in the office! I used to dread Mondays rolling back around because I hated my job, but now I hate Mondays because it means another day closer to finishing my internship, and I am having the time of my life! How is it week 3 already?! Today was a pretty quiet day so I worked on my blog and did ad-hoc tasks, like managing the PR deliveries, which to my surprise, two were addressed to ME! Ok, so one was from my mum so that doesn't count, but the other was from the PR who handles Moroccan Oil. I met her at the event at Duck & Dry in my first week, and I told her how much I loved the dry texture spray that the stylist used on my hair on the night, so she sent me a bottle. Thank you so much Susanna!

Another day, another insane PR delivery
HORRIBLE nights sleep. Woke up about 2am to a car alarm going off for about 2 hours, then the shower was so cold I gave myself brain freeze. WAH. I spent my whole day at work transcribing an interview my Beauty Director Inge did with the founder of Beauty Pie- Marcia Kilgore. If I was given this task when I was at school, or uni, I would have given you the biggest eye roll ever but the interviews are so interesting that they don't seem too much of a chore. I'm not going to lie though, I had been staring so hard  at Microsoft Word all day that I felt blind! I was supposed to go to the Louise Thompson x LOTD launch party at STK after work, but I was so tired and I've got the worst cold in the world so I got myself some dinner from M&S and headed home. The woman who owns the Air BnB I'm currently staying in had left some Ferrero Rochers on my bed to apologise for the shower being cold- cute! Gutted though because I started Slimming World on Sunday so i'm gonna have the google the syns before I dive in.

Cosmo Perk number 4839483983
Do you really work in beauty journalism if you don't get sent Biscuiteers on the reg? I swear that company has gone through the roof since PR's discovered how much everyone loves a personalised biscuit. Cupcakes are SO 2016. Anyway, today's offering was from Astal. (Does anyone know the syns in a Biscuiteers biscuit? Maybe I could lick the icing? Or just smell it?) Finished off the transcript this morning. After work Lucy, Jess and I headed to the Cosmo Self-Made Summit talk- an event hosted here in the Hearst building where key members of the Cosmo team, including our Editor, Farrah Storr, and my Beauty Director Inge shared career inspo on how to make it in magazines and how they got their roles at Cosmo. It was really inspiring and I really admire how hard they worked to get to where they are now. Also, Slimming World is already a disaster because I went for a curry and cocktails after work. Whoops, i'll start again tomorrow!

Second Biscuiteers delivery of the month!
So today is Thanksgiving, so Krispy Kreme sent about 4 dozen doughnuts to the office! (Don't even talk to me about syns- I inhaled one in about 0.03 seconds.) Today was such a good day for a couple of reasons. 1) Krispy Kreme delivery, duh. 2) I heard my first ever Christmas song on the radio! (Mariah, the OG) AND I got a very exciting delivery from GHD! The parcel included new GHD curling tongs, paddle brush and the advanced split hair therapy treatment. Absolutely speechless- thank you SO much to Mel who sent me them! (I got sooooo many 'Oh my god I want your job!!!! replies to my Insta story when I posted them last night!)

Transcribing again today, but this time it's a man called Guido who has a very strong French accent and speaks VERY fast about scientific formulations. When I finish this one I am fully expecting to receive a GCSE in Chemistry. and I will most definitely be adding 'bilingual' to my skill set on LinkedIn. I am absolutely GUTTED that it's Friday- it's come round so quick again! Because next week is my last week here at Cosmo and I never want this internship to end!!!!! Anyway, on a positive, I'm in Sheffield this weekend celebrating my friend Becca's 30th- it's festival themed, so naturally I'm wearing heels.

Stay tuned for week 4! (Sob!)

Monday, 20 November 2017


So, if you told me I would be cheering loudly, high-fiving the other riders, shouting motivational phrases like 'I AM ENOUGH' at a spin class, I would have laughed in your face and said no chance. I don't even like it when the instructor shouts something that requires a lacklustre response of 'yeaaah' to try and get the energy up. I'm here to spin, not to cheerlead.

That was until I attended my first (and most definitely not the last!) spin class at Psycle London. It puts every spin class I have ever done to shame. I feel like with something like spinning, if the instructor brings the energy, it spreads so quickly and you end up having a really good, sweaty, workout. If they can't be arsed, then you can't be arsed, and then it's a waste of 45 minutes that you could have been laying on the couch watching Come Dine With Me re-runs.

Here, the instructors are absolute machines, the energy is through the roof, the technology is second to non, and the actual interior of the building is so minimalist and chic- a faaaaaaar cry from my old gym in Wakefield.

I booked myself on for a 60 minute 'ride' (they don't call it spinning, they call it 'indoor cycling') in their Mortimer Street studio with Alana, a tiny woman with abs of steel- actually, her whole body looked solid AF. (#goals) 

I thought it was going to be really clique-y and the other riders would spot the newbie from a mile off, but the class was PACKED, the room is dark (apart from neon lighting on the room- v. cool) and the music is loud so you wouldn't have chance to lean over to your pal for a quick chat even if you wanted to! Not to mention, they reinforce the whole 'community' vibe.

You have to wear clip-in shoes (NO ESCAPE!) and Alana helped me clip myself in and position my bike to get ready to ride! When I mentioned earlier about cheering and chanting and all that jazz, I wasn't joking. Usually I cringe at this type of thing, but Alana was SO motivating and inspiring and passionate that I actually really loved it! The 60 minutes flew, and even though I couldn't feel my thighs when finally dismounted my bike, I can not wait to go back!

Really looking forward to trying out a boxing class at BXR on Thursday- stay tuned for a review!

Have you tried Psycle? what's your favourite way to workout in London?

Sunday, 19 November 2017

How to Create a Capsule Wardrobe (And What NOT to Do)

I can't be the only person who buys clothing a size smaller with the intention of fitting in to it a few weeks later. Or in my case, a few days. I'm a serial online shopper, and there have been SO many times that I've bought an outfit for the weekend on a Monday or a Tuesday a size smaller than my normal size, thinking that I'm going to fit into it by Saturday. It sounds absolutely ridiculous to type out- because it is. But I STILL CONTINUE TO DO IT.

Why? You tell me. I feel smug at the time when I'm ordering it, I'll probably go to the gym or eat a salad for my dinner and be like yep, this is going to look absolutely banging on Saturday night. Then fast forward 5 days, it's 6pm on Saturday night, I'm having my routine meltdown in my bedroom because low and behold, the dress is too tight. Or the top doesn't fit. Or the trousers are giving me extreme camel toe. And I end up wearing one of the same 3 tops I always wear. Might throw on a pair of XL hoop earrings to try and distract people from the fact I am being a serial outfit repeater. But I never learn.

Same with sales. I won't step foot inside a store during a sale launch, but I am allllllll over it online. And I'm not alone when I say I buy stuff just because it's cheap. Take Topshop for example. The sale actually launches on Christmas Eve, but everyone assumes it's Boxing Day because that's when the majority of other sales launch. (Thank me later). The bonus is that I get the best pick of the discounted goodies, but the downside is that I end up buying things that I have never even seen in my life, just because I panic that someone else will buy it first and I'll regret it for the rest of eternity. Result? I end up with a huge bag of stuff I am probably never going to wear.

The reason that this has suddenly come to my attention- beside the fact I feel like I have burst several blood vessels in my neck from my weekly tantrums- is the fact I have been packing up my things ready to move out of my old flat and realised that I have sooooOoOoOOo many clothes piled up in my wardrobe, still with the labels on. I daren't even bring myself to total up the amount of money that has been wasted on impulse, panic-bought clothes that would probably only just fit my left thigh, because it is sickening. To the core.

Obviously the time period in which I can return them is long gone, so I'm going to have to eBay them which is 1) a ballache, and 2) the post office is the most depressing place on earth. Brilliant. Anyway, on the positive side, it's given me a HUGE kick up the bum to stop impulse buying, and start investing in better quality, key pieces for my wardrobe.

Image from Pinterest

I want to look and feel good in every single outfit I wear from now on, so I'm sharing my tips on creating a capsule wardrobe:

1. If you wouldn't have bought it full price, DON'T BUY IT IN THE SALE.

2. Create a wish-list of luxury items that you can't afford right now, but know you want to own eventually. This can be your birthday/Christmas list, OR if you get a tax rebate/win the lottery/get a work bonus/rob a bank then you're allowed to treat yourself. (My number one is the Missoma horn or this initial necklace)

3. DON'T WORRY ABOUT THE LABEL. Buy it in your size. Don't do a Claudia and think you will be able to fit into something 2 sizes smaller in the space of 5 days then cry when it doesn't. If it's fits nicely, you will look nice, and you will feel nice wearing it! (Plus, no Saturday night mental breakdowns!)

4. Can it be used to create different looks? A good wardrobe staple can be worn different ways, to create different looks without making you feel like you're wearing the same thing day in day out. I recommend this black turtleneck jumper, a good pair of jeans and some black ankle boots.

5. Be realistic. You might think you're being clever by purchasing a thick, cable knit jumper in the summer sale because there is 30% off, but let's be honest. You're probably going to hate it by the time November rolls around. Same applies to bikinis. Don't do it guys.

6. Go through your wardrobe once every 6 months and get rid of everything that doesn't fit, or you don't like any more.

What are your tips for creating a capsule wardrobe?

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Diary of a Cosmo Intern: Week 2

Survived my first night in an Airbnb! Not going to lie, I was SO sceptical about where I was going to be staying because I literally panic booked it the same day, but it was ok... Aside from some sketchy interior decor and a bed that felt like a tombstone, I didn't wake up to a figure stood over the end of my bed or freeze to death in my sleep. Result. Also, I feel loads more confident getting the tube now, double result! Can I call myself an official Londoner now? At work, I spent the day contacting PR's for a fragrance feature that will be going out in our March issue. One particular one, is only available in-store, and comes in a hand-blown bottle AND IS £400. (Don't worry mum, fortunately for you it's not on my Christmas list!) 

Dreamy interiors at Restaurant Ours


DEFINITELY spoke too soon about the tube. I finished work last night to find the stations were CLOSED until literally like 7.30. Fantastic. I got to my second Airbnb at about 8.30 and promptly booked another week there. It's super close to central, and the thought of dragging that suitcase/body bag to another location is making me want to scream. Anyway, today was a very exciting day as I was off to the Sofia Richie x Nip + Fab event at Restaurant Ours- one of my London bucket list places! It was as gorgeous as I expected, and I met up with the lovely Tori from PopSugar beforehand (who I met last week at Duck & Dry) so we could attend together. The products look amazing and I can't wait to try them out!


My team were attending an 'away day' today, so I had an unexpected day off! I took the opportunity to upgrade my phone to the new iPhone 8+. It is HUGE. I then met one of my old uni friends for some drinks in the city, he took me to some £dgY underground bars and I fell in love with London a million times more.


So today the angels (literally- the style ambassador is actually called Angel!) from Cloud Nine came to style my hair and showcase the new tools from the Christmas Gift of Gold collection. If you follow my Instagram you will know how much I rave about my Cloud Nine waving wand (purchase here) It's the only wand I use to curl my hair because it just creates the most gorgeous, soft, bouncy curls. That was until Angel created this masterpiece using the smaller wand! It took her 15 minutes (if that!) and the results were stunning! Hollywood waves in actual minutes. The secret is to wait until the curls have cooled, then brush them out (in the same direction) with a comb. Something I usually avoided as I though the curls would drop, how wrong was I! After work I met Emily, one of my best friends who was in the city for a couple of days with work. Let's just say a 'quiet' drink turned into duty wining on a stripper pole in a gay bar called Freedom. |SUCH A GOOD NIGHT. 

Ok, now I know how Londoners seems to be able to go out for drinks every night of the week. Evening meals are replaced with canap├ęs at after-work events, so the money that you would usually spend on dinner is spent on drinks, and because you go out straight from work you get home around midnight and manage to get a full 8 hours before work resulting in a minimal hangover and ready to do it all again the following night. A lifestyle I am TOTALLY here for. Until I do a Regina George and come to the horrible realisation that sweatpants are all that fit me right now... Anyway this morning I pulled some pastel colour beauty looks from the AW17 fashion shows to use in an upcoming feature. I can not believe the hard work that goes into every single page of the magazine, seriously! I saw a page of edit and every single work, phrase, image, font is scrutinised to make sure every detail is perfect. I have a whole new appreciation for editors!

Honorary Spectrum Sister for the night
After work I headed over to the veeery swanky Mayfair Hotel, to meet up with the Spectrum ladies who had organised a viewing party for their episode of Britain's Next Top Model, with all the models in attendance, of course. (No biggie) It was as fabulous as I would have expected, and I'm preeeetty sure my blood type is prosecco right now.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

My London Bucket List

Image from Bob Bob Ricard

Have I mentioned I'm in London guys?!?!!?

Anyway, being from a little town in the north, where we only got a Nando's about a year ago (still waiting on Deliver and Uber mind you), the thought of so many exciting and unique bars, clubs and restaurants is SO exciting to me! My London Pinterest board has been increasing by the day, so I thought as I'm here, I would try and get through as many as possible! If you fancy joining me, slide into my DM's and let's make it a date! 

Peggy Porschen

Milk Train


Farm girl Cafe

Winter Wonderland



Palm Vaults

Cereal Killer

Bob Bob Richard

Radio Rooftop

Restaurant Ours

Anywhere that does halloumi fries

Coppa Club

Barry's Bootcamp

Can you recommend anywhere else?

Friday, 10 November 2017

Diary of a Cosmo Intern: Week 1

My Dad had already done a flying visit on the Friday afternoon to collect the majority of my things to help me move out of my Wakefield flat, so all I had left was one week's worth of clothes in a suitcase ready for my first week in London. Well, when I say 'one week's worth', I'm totally lying. There was enough to kit out my whole street BUT it's always better to have too much than too little. I'm not gonna lie, as it was getting closer and closer to the time that I would be needing to leave for the station, I was SO close to chickening out and just missing it. I do this allllllll the time- work myself up so much and just bail last minute. But I am about to go intern at THE Cosmo. Off to LDN I go!

My heart-wrenching leaving card from Beth
DAY ONE! My stomach was in knots because I was so excited/nervous/every emotion ever. Lucy met me downstairs and gave me a tour, and showed my to my desk. We get PR deliveries twice a day so you can imagine what the beauty cupboard looks like, it is HEAVEN. I spent the whole day transcribing an interview with the Co-Founder of Deciem, Brandon Truaxe. He is such a inspiring man and I love the whole concept of the brand, but oh my GOD does he talk! Also treated myself to a salad from Whole Foods for lunch...It was £12.50. that's me on scrambled eggs for the rest of the week.

Today I was attending a product launch breakfast for Lipivir, so I headed over to the gorgeous Covent Garden Hotel. I was slightly nervous because I was going solo, but the other PR's/journos/freelancers/bloggers were soooooo lovely! The breakfast was served afternoon tea style. Mini bacon sandwiches, goats cheese and spinach croissant, mini eggs Benedict and eggs Royale, so good!

Headed to another event at Mortimer House to meet with the founder of Neom Organics, Nicola Elliott, and two PR's. She presented the brand new skincare product, launching next year, and a it was only me there (!!) I had the opportunity to ask as many questions as I wanted. Oh, and there was catering from Tanya's- a raw superfood cafe in Chelsea. The salted caramel millionaires shortbread was INSANE. After work I attended a Moroccan Oil launch at THE Duck & Dry. It's the most Instagrammable salon in the world, I mean it has a swing chair inside! The launch was packed, and I met the lovely Tori from PopSugar who I'm looking forward to seeing again next week!

I started my day with a job interview at a luxury lifestyle and beauty PR agency. Although interning provides the best experience, it doesn't guarantee a job at the end, so if I'm serious about living in London then I need to get applying! *crosses all limbs* I nipped out to the Aisle 8 press day in the afternoon. One of the beauty PR's, Laura, is an absolute babe and it was so good to see her again! (She was also at breakfast on Tuesday) After work I had an event at the swanky Cirque le Soir for Latest in Beauty. Also, Beth was in London!!! She came in with me and we spent the evening with the lovely Hannah and Sophie, aka the Spectrum Sisters, before nipping for some pizza before she got the train home.

Woke up to a million messages from people replying to my Instagram stories saying how much it looks like I'm enjoying myself and living the dream- I feel like I am! This has genuinely been the first time I've been gutted for the week to be over because I've met so many influential people that I plan to stay in touch with. I feel like everyone in the PR/editorial industry knows each other or has worked together at some point, so I'm trying to network like mad while I've got such a good opportunity to. I've got some very exciting events coming up next week, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Christmas 2017: 6 of the Best of the Beauty Advent Calendars

christmas beauty calendars

Look Fantastic £79
This highly sought after calendar crams a massive £300 worth of beauty and skincare treats in for just £79! Not to be fooled with all samples though- as well as 16 of these, you will also find 9 full-sized products in this little beauty wonderland.

Charlotte Tilbury £150
Whether you've been naughty or nice this year, I 100% give my approval for you to add a bit of Tilbury sparkle to your beauty bag, in the form of the 2017 advent calendar. Can't afford the hefty price tag? Team Tilbury have also released cute mini sets, such as the Hot Lips minis (purchase here) and The Gift of Goddess Skin (purchase here).

NYX Cosmetics £50
Ideal for those who need to break out of their lipstick rut. I will hold my hands up and say I am well and truly tied to my nudes. Any shades of nude is a bit of me. But enough about me. And nudes. Add an exciting new shade to your palette every day throughout the festive period in December (in other word- a massive 24 new lippies!)

Benefit £35
Not going to lie, I'm still sketchy about advent calendar's that only have 12 windows to open. But I'm greedy. In my opinion there should be 31. But for £35 you can NOT go wrong with Benefit Wonderglam! Enjoy 12 of the best-selling products, including Hoola (my personal fave!), the Porefessional and Roller Lash. Get your skates on though (soz not soz), I'm predicting a sell out!

No.7 £40
Now I'm not going to lie, I'm not wild about No.7 myself, but with a waiting list of apparently 10,000 people eagerly awaiting it's launch date last month, this one is actually sold out on a lot of sites. 25 goodies are lurking behind these doors. Did you manage to snag one?

Diptyque £300
The big one! If luxurious candles are your thing, (which seems to be everyone at the moment) then this one is well worth sacrificing your 25 mini chocolates for. Indulge in skincare, body care, and of course, the most delicious smelling candles on the planet. 

And the rest.... Clinique, Clarins, Ciate, L'Occitane, Decleor, Molton Brown, House of Fraser,  The Body Shop,  

Will you be picking up a beauty advent calendar this year?

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Why Quitting My Job Was The Best Thing I've Ever Done

Just a lil pic of me in, yano, COSMO
I have always been a hard worker. Sugar Daddy and diva jokes aside, I worked two jobs as WELL as studying for my degree throughout my, ahem, four, years at university, and still managed to graduate with a 2.1. *paints nails emoji*

When I got this particular job, which involved me moving to the smallest little town in West Yorkshire (I thought I would have been able to live in Leeds but it turned out the commute would be too long), I thought this is it! I've landed my dream job! And that is what it started out to be. I loved my team, in fact, I got on with almost every person in that building like a house of fire, and I genuinely enjoyed every single day.

Fast forward six months. It came to light how there was zero progression, zero chances to be creative, I was getting talked down to on a daily basis, told how to behave, told what to write in my own blog (erm? sorry?! It's MY blog!) constantly checked up on on my social media, horrible, stagnant office environment and the fact I had become so disinterested in my own actual workload, that I hadn't even parked my car yet and I was already counting the minutes until 5pm. I didn't feel like me anymore. I was becoming so stressed, my anxiety was through the roof, I wasn't sleeping at night- I have to wear a gum shield at night anyway because I grind my teeth when I'm asleep, something I've had to do for the last 4 year, but in the timeframe that I was working at this particular place I grinned completely through it...TWICE. THROUGH STRESS AND ANXIETY. 

Because I was so demotivated and unhappy at work, it was carrying over into my social life on weekends and evenings. I was snapping at my friends and family, which makes me so angry to think back on now, how much I let it affect me. This is when I decided something had to change.

So I quit. Probably the biggest, scariest decision I have made in my adult life so far, but the fact I would rather be unemployed than be in an environment that toxic speaks for itself. I decided to put my health and happiness first, and as soon as it was done, I drove straight home to my parents house to surround myself with people I actually care about, and who care about me, and it just felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders.

The support I have had off everyone has been so overwhelming! From past colleagues (who I will miss so much!), fellow bloggers, my friends, and of course my parents. They support every single decision I have made in my life so far (bad AND good) and they never  stop pushing me to follow my dreams. I couldn't have done any of this without them and I am so fortune and lucky.

I'm a firm believer in everything happens for a reason, and literally the day after I shared my story about quitting on Twitter, I got a message asking me if I was interested in a 4 week internship at my favourite magazine. So, last week I was absolutely hating life, and on Monday morning I am going to be rocking up to my first day at COSMOPOLITAN. In LONDON. Someone pinch me!

Anyway, the moral of the story isn't to bash my old place of work. I'm done with wasting my energy on that. It's to inspire you to do what makes YOU happy. Nothing extraordinary ever comes from staying in your comfort zone, and if it scares you and excites you, it might be a good thing to try.

Monday, 30 October 2017

Want a Hollywood Smile? Introducing the Uber Sonic Subscription Box

Beauty starts with a smile, am I right? Ok, well I know how much of a contradiction that sounds coming from me, who has had a LOT of work done, but for me, nice teeth are kind of a big deal. Fortunately for me, I've never had to have a brace (although my bottom teeth are in desperate need of one). My parents blessed me with a perfectly straight top set of teeth, and I have been using Crest strips to keep them looking pearly white. However, as much as I love the results, they make my teeth SO sensitive.

When I was offered the chance to review the new Uber Sonic electric toothbrush, I was intrigued. Usually I would be like eh? A toothbrush? How on earth will that be on any remote interest to my readers?! But this is no ordinary toothbrush. The sleek aluminium design feels exactly like my iPhone, and it's so light! Similar to my Magnitone (which I reviewed here) there is a buzz function to indicate when to move to your bottom row of teeth. I won't go all dentist on you here, because eeeeeeveryone knows that electric toothbrushes clean your teeth way better than a standard toothbrush- 7 times better, to be precise.

The only time I buy toothbrushes is when I have used mine to absolute death and the bristles are all over the place and I actually remember to pick up a new one the next time I'm in my local Boots. The Uber Sonic is part of a subscription service which delivers new brush heads to your door every other month. The starter pack- including the toothbrush, charging station AND whitening kit is just £19(!) which goes down to £9 every other month. So affordable, right?!

Now the exciting part- the teeth whitening! The Uber Sonic Club whitening kit is so simple. You mould your teeth to the shape of the mouthguards- top row and bottom row, then when you are ready to go, you add 1ml of gel to each mould and wear for up to 60 minutes.

I use mine when I'm getting ready for a night out, because I always feel like they look super white when they are against my dark tan. The amazing thing is that I felt absolutely no sensitivity, and you can repeat the process up to twice a day until your teeth are the colour you want.

You only get one set of teeth, so make sure you look after them! Sign up for your starter pack with the Uber Sonic Club here. 

*I was very kindly sent the Uber Sonic to review, but all thoughts and opinions are 100% honest.

Sunday, 22 October 2017

My Advice on Travelling and Island Hopping in Thailand

It feels like the world and it's mother has been backpacking through Thailand recently. As much as I though I would never be the person who was dying to go travelling for months on end, when the opportunity came up to visit South East Asia, obviously I didn't say no!

Two of my friends had quit their jobs to go travelling, starting in Bali, then heading to Thailand, then finishing off with a year in New Zealand. They were going to be in Thailand over Christmas and New Year (2015/16), so I booked a flight and joined then- landing on Christmas day!

I'm not going to lie, it was SO weird being in Bangkok in ridiculously humid 40 degree heat,  with not a Yorkshire pudding in sight! But I am all about embracing the culture, so I ate (well, had a bite then nearly projectile vommed) a deep fried scorpion from a street vendor and drank a bottle of Chang and got ready to celebrate the festive season Thailand-style!

TripAdvisor is Your New BFF

Another weird thing was the fact that I only had 2 nights accommodation booked. I have never been backpacking before, or anything similar, so I am used to having my hotel booked for the entire duration of my holiday. No- not in Thailand! We stayed in Bangkok for 2 nights, then went and sat in a cafe, ordered a couple of fresh coconuts (my obsession whilst I was out there!) and booked the next few nights in a hostel/treehouse/whatever on earth was the cheapest/most decent looking place to stay on the next island. IT WAS LITERALLY AS EASY AS THAT. To be fair, Jess and Soph were the pro's so I just rolled with it.

Obviously we arrived at some places and were greeted with actual squalor- no door on the communal shower, infested with ants, 389429383 bunk beds in ONE room, and in this case we just hit the nearest cafe and booked somewhere else. With a lot of the accommodation you don't pay anything until you get there, so it's easy to just sweeeeerve.

Koh Phangan, home of the famous Full Moon parties..and my shiny face

Island Hopping

Again, soooooo much easier than I imaged! The only internal flight we had to get was from Bangkok to Krabi (I think!) and that took about an hour, and cost about £50. 

Koh Lanta, Koh Tao, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan, Phuket and Phi Phi are all just a couple of hours by boat away, and arranging travel is super easy! Again, I was clueless, so thank God for the girls! We literally strolled into a travel shop and sought out the cheapest price for a boat to our next island of choice. Each place differed in price by a couple of hundred baht (about £5) and you didn't have walk far to get the best deal. There is literally one on every street, usually alongside a massage place and a 7/11.

We started off on Koh Lanta, then as we made more friends on each island we would all travel to the next place together. I can definitely see how people make friends for life when they're travelling- everyone is just there to have a fun time, and when you are in paradise with not a care in the world- how can anything be in a bad mood?!

Snorkelling in Koh Lanta

Packing Essentials

As I mentioned above, I have never been on any kind of holiday like this before. When I say 'any kind of holiday like this' I mean where I am literally carrying my worldly belongings on my back. I am always the one at the airport who has to fling open their case at the check-in desk and actually put on half the clothes to get under the weight allowance, so to pack enough for two weeks (which actually turned out to be 3) was HARD. Don't bother packing anything long sleeve or leggings/trousers. It is HOT. And HUMID. Loose fitting clothes, mosquito repellent, and ALLLLLLL OF THE BIKINIS!

Just a lil pic of me being spiritual in Thailand
Length of Travel

If you are going for under a month, like me, be realistic with the number of places you want to visit. I had absolutely no chance of exploring both North and South Korea in 2 weeks, because some places you decide to stay a couple of days longer, and some you just can't wait to move on from. It's tricky if you haven't been before. I was only supposed to be there for 2 weeks, but ended up extending my flight home to stay another week because 2 weeks is just nowhere near long enough. If you take into account the 20 hour flight, meaning you miss a day either side, it's barely 12 days! If I was to go back, which I would absolutely love to, I would probably stay for a month. The atmosphere is soooo relaxed over there, I feel like I closed my eyes to tan on the beach and woke up 2 days later!

Planning to go travelling yourself? I would definitely recommend booking somewhere a lil fancy when you land in Bangkok. Check out Destination2 here to get an amazing deal on 4 and 5* hotels in the capital!

*The post is in collaboration with Destination2. All content and images are mine.