Little Lottie: June 2014

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Weekend of Sunshine

Here in Cornwall we don't get much sunshine but lately it's been splendid! Reaching highs of 24 degrees we are looking forward to a warmer summer, fingers crossed it will be gorgeous for my birthday next week. 

The weekend is a precious time as its the only time off work nick and I have so we like to adventure and make the most of it. This weekend was one of the hottest and to kick start it on Saturday we went to a gorgeous tea room around 10 miles away from me, I can't tell you the name as they don't want to advertise but I can tell you they had gorgeous horses and delicious food! 

We ate bacon and runny egg in a granary bap with a gorgeous salad on the side. Ever since my first visit to the tea room last summer I have added fruit to my salads, I have a sweet tooth and it definitely makes them more enjoyable! 
Don't forget the chocolate and clotted cream milkshake for afters! 

After filling up on all things yummy I drove Nick and my sister down to the shores of Falmouth and we did a short 2 mile walk along the coast to the neighbouring beach. The views were stunning and I'm so lucky to have this on my doorstep. 

To work off our mammoth lunch we played badminton and headed to Nick's family's house to watch Frozen! It was my first time seeing the film (I know, late as always.) The occasional 'Do you wanna build a snowman' has the tendency to slip out whilst I'm working. 

Sunday cranked up the heat and Cornwall reached 26 degrees which is hotter than Cyprus when I was there last month! To cool down nick and I filled up the childhood paddling pool that my family dug out of the loft to donate to charity, we were 'testing it out'. It may be small but we had fun with water fights and foil boat racing, the thrilling life I lead. 

The weekend always goes by too quickly and now I'm back at my desk for another week. What do you do at the weekend?

Little Lottie xo

Monday, 23 June 2014

Pamper Night & Home-made Facial

When the man is away… I pamper. I love to give my hair and skin a luxury treatment occasionally and I rarely get to slip in the bath so when my man wasn't around I escaped to a girly wonderland. 

Chocolate and candle-
Everyone needs a bit of chocolate every pamper night. Make the experience even more luxurious with a scented candle, mine is Village Candle’s Brownie Delight scent, you can pick these up for a good price at Trago Mills.  

No7 cleansing brush-
Whilst focusing on my face throughout pamper night it is important to give some love to our bodies too. Rather than using an in-shower scrub I whipped out my No7 Beautiful Skin Cleansing Brush £24.95 which was too harsh for my face but great on the high speed setting for a light exfoliator on the body. Use in circular motions before jumping in for a soak.

Coconut oil in tips-
Before washing my hair I always put coconut oil on my tips, it makes my hair tangle free and the steam from the bath or shower will really boost the oil’s moisture factor! I find shampooing twice gets rid of the coconut oil and leaves you with locks like silk. 

Dr Bronner's Magic Soap: Almond-
Dr Bronner’s magic soaps are great and the almond flavour smells delicious! They have 18 uses including toothpaste, cleaner, shampoo and hand wash! For a small price and a big bottle you can save a lot of money with these bad boys.  After attempting the shampoo and face wash methods I resulted with dry skin and hair due to the foaming agent in the soap but I love popping some in the bath purely for the smell. (Excuse the paint on the bottle, I found another use for the magic soap)

Favorite cleanser/Liz Earle muslin cloth-
To kick start the facial process I cleansed with my favourite balm cleanser: Clinique Take the day Off Balm. This is a really moisturising balm that effortlessly cleans and removes impurities (read review here.) I went a step further and used my Liz Earle muslin cloth to steam away any leftover nastiness. 

Honey and coconut face mask-
We all love our face masks now and then and to keep this post as budgeted as possible I made my own. I hate purchasing expensive products to find that natural products (food) work so much better, for example, if you have pores you are probably familiar with the Biore blackhead nose strips. Personally I don’t notice the effects of these £7 strips but slapping on some olive oil and steaming on the other hand keeps me poreless for days! Instead of using a branded alternative I mixed a teaspoon of raw honey (draws out bacteria) with a teaspoon of coconut oil (moisturising) and a dribble of warm water to soften the mixture. The results are magnificent and the benefits include less pores/blackheads and baby soft skin! 

Naked Detox Shampoo and Herbal Essences Tousle me Softly Conditioner-
After soaking in the hot bath I used a more detoxing hair treatment than normal, the naked detox peppermint shampoo and conditioner is great at removing any product build up but uses organic ingredients so it doesn't strip the hair. To further condition the hair I used Herbal Essences Tousle Me Softly conditioner which really does leave a tousled look that I love. 

Satin Care Shave Gel and Wilkinson Sword Hydro Razor-
I’m trying to be brave and start epilating to save the hassle of shaving but when I do shave using Satin Care with a touch of Olay Sensitive Shave Gel makes the entire experience quick and easy. I don’t get razor rash on my legs after using the gel and it doesn't leave me with dryness like when I use a normal body wash, paired with my Wilkinson sword hydro razor they are a match made in heaven. I have a feeling this golden bottle will be a bath and shower staple for a while. 

Green tea ice cube facial-
I recently read a great tip on Lauren Conrad’s website for at home facials, most stars claim to have great skin due to salon treatments like facials so an at home remedy is very welcome! Lauren amongst others say that by rubbing an ice cube over the skin you can shrink blemishes, improve circulation, create a dewy glow and reduce pores, yes please. I had to give it a whirl so to spice the facial up I froze pure green tea rather than plain water; the results were good but probably not salon quality. I wrapped two of the green tea ice cubes in a muslin cloth (if you put ice directly onto the skin you can cause damage) then rubbed them all over my skin in circular motions until melted. My pores were definitely closed and my skin felt like a baby’s but I saw no improvement in blemishes after the first treatment. For the price I’m definitely not complaining. 

Boots Salon Nail Hardener-
The perfect time to sort out your nails is after the shower as they go soft and are easier to cut and shape. I used Boots Salon Nail Hardener and my reliable Nails Inc kiwi scented nail file (very old) for a natural look. 

Hope you enjoyed my pamper night tips! I certainly enjoyed trying them.
Comment with any suggestions and don't forget to follow for more.
Little Lottie XO Haul

A few weeks ago you may remember my post raving about (read it here) The website has thousands of different products and fabulous Asian brands available to us in the UK, they have also released an app (now I’m shopping on the go too.)  I couldn’t resist and ordered some bits to try so here is my small but fabulous haul!

Once on the site I went straight to the beauty section as the packaging is too adorable and tempting. In search for a Benefit Boi-ing dupe I snapped up this ‘Perfect Concealer’ which has a similar creamy consistency but in a pale shade. The concealer is great for touch ups so it’s in my bag at all times for any emergencies but for every day wear it doesn’t stand up to the test. Boi-ing won this round but for less than half the price I am certainly impressed.

My last beauty item was the Etude House Corset Bronzer in 04 Light Shading which is a great colour for me! I’ve been looking to start contouring more but wanted a natural shade and this is perfect for my pale complexion. It’s matte finish and is great for use in the crease of my eye as well, as for contouring it’s a bit too subtle but makes for a great all over bronze.

As for bags and shoes I actually removed them all from my basket as I was going a little overboard, (you will understand when you see them!) I did however discover this beauty which will forever be my shower pall. This amazingly soft towel and hair wrap set was too adorable to leave behind and is the warmest thing to slip into when getting out the shower/bath, (I would live in this if I could.) The wrap keeps my pillows dry and hair tame whilst I slumber after a hot bath, the towel is also really handy if you are waiting for your body moisturiser to dry because it is so loose and cosy.
These are some of my attempts to show you my towel set. Please note: Not a boob selfie!

The last item is from the site’s lifestyle section which is full of cute house décor and stationery. As I recently re-vamped my bedroom I set up a desk where I can easily type a blog post and this is the perfect accessory for that. After a few dodgy laptops I now trust my Asus 7” Notebook for all things tech, including blogging. (I even take all my pictures with it.) This pink bunny stand works for iPhones too and is super handy for hold up my tablet when I’m typing or watching some YouTube.

I am constantly checking Yesstyle’s app for new items and amazing sales, I can already tell my next haul will be a big one.

What’s your go to place for online shopping?

Don’t forget to follow for more, Little Lottie xo 

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

DIY Weekends

As a full time worker it is often hard to fit things in at the weekends but re-decorating my room has been filling them up lately and these are some of the results from my DIY weekends.

You may have already realised I’m quite a tidy person and as someone who suffers anxiety I like to keep my bedroom a safe haven away from the clutter going on inside my brain or at work, I’m really pleased with the results of my DIY weekends and am starting to feel my bedroom is getting the way I want it.

I’ve really wanted more storage for my clothes, (wardrobe is bursting at the seams.) Upping the storage space also gives me an excuse for a shopping trip and wardrobe change! I was looking online for a cheap but pretty chest of drawers and IKEA seemed the only option but as my closes store is over 2 hours away I was stumped until I was given this IKEA chest by someone who didn’t need it. It was around £30 and wasn’t in the slightest beautiful so I built it (achievement), gave it a lick of paint and it looks a million dollars! 
It’s really tidied the clutter in my room and now my favourite clothing picks have a home.

I then added these gorgeous glass knobs to the new chest to make it look extra snazzy. They were £3.99 for four in Home Bargains!

The chest looked pretty lonely on its own and I wanted some girly décor that would make my bedroom look fresh yet cosy, I soon picked up on the birdcage trend and remembered we had this little gem of a cage chilling out in the garage! I couldn’t believe we’d neglected it so much, it was dented and the paint had flaked away so a quick lick of paint and the pink roses was exactly what it needed. I went on the hunt for flowers as I decided the cage needed some colour, the pink rose garland was £9 in The Range and I cut the roses free to wind them round the cage where I wanted them. Using the roses I rubbed some of the pink dye off on the corners of the cage to make it look more rustic!

After decorating my room it was time to decorate myself so using inspiration from We Heart It I opted for a watermelon theme. They are very messy, I am certainly no pro, but they did look pretty funky over the weekend.

Do you have any DIY tips that I can jazz up my room with?

Little Lottie xo

New In: Little Lottie's Boutique

As you may know I run a very small online Boutique, currently based on Facebook! We have some new items in to equip you for summer 2014. My sister and I had a lot of fun modeling so I hope you like the pictures!

Sheer mint coloured top, £9 
 The mint colour of this gorgeous vest top will be perfect for home or away this summer. The light material means you wont have to worry about getting too warm in the summer heat and the sheer stripes show some cheeky skin. Size 10-12, £9!
Gorgeous off white lace tiered shorts
 These crochet/lace style tiered shorts give the 'skort' look a girly twist. The off white is a perfect summer shade and will flatter all skin tones. Currently in size 8, £12!
Anchor print dress, £16 
 This gorgeous white, navy anchor dress is perfect for lunch dates or casual summer BBQ's, available in size 8. Only £16 for endless summer fun!
Peach flower, batwing style tee £9.99
 This super comfy and soft, batwing style, peach flower printed tee is ideal for light summer clothing. Add some bright colours to your holiday suitcase or pair with denim for a casual lunch. Great for all occasions. Currently in size 10-12, only £9.99!
Chiffon black, star print kaftan £18
This gorgeous black, white star print, sheer kaftan is a perfect throw on over any bikini this summer. Comes in one size to fit all, £18! This is also brilliant for a light cover up on late summer nights out. 

Lottie tries: Microdermabrasion

My skin has definitely been lacking lustre lately, looking blemished and dull I covered with trusty concealer and thought no more about it. Off I went to work like any other day but I never realised people were actually noticing the flaws. When I’m insecure I get the mum chat of “other people don’t even notice it”, “it looks worse to you” however these comments just re-enforced the fact that even though I’m comfortable to step out without foundation other people may think I need it. The comments are never cruel just friends and colleagues suggesting ideas.

On a recent holiday my fiancé and I met a lovely couple and shared some… a lot of cocktails with them. I soon discovered that the girl I had met was also on Roaccuatne in the past and was also taking Dianette for her skin problems. I couldn’t believe the coincidence and suddenly felt excited that we were in the same boat but there was one key difference, she was wearing foundation and I hadn’t even packed any! I would never have guessed she had severe skin problems but she could tell that I had so bought the subject up, I suddenly felt insecure and my make-up free week was slowly turning into regret.

Despite this I still won’t wear foundation as I don’t feel comfortable in it, I should embrace the fear and tackle it! Instead of being concerned about the suggestions, I listened. When we were on the subject of skin a friend at work recommended I go for microdermabrasion, the word abrasion is a bit scary for me due to sensitive and acne prone skin so I was skeptical. Then I discovered you don’t have to make a pricey trip to the salon but the stuff comes in bottles, Bingo!  Made a trip to Boots and after much research and my favoured review reading I choose No7’s Total Renewal Hypoallergenic bottle.  It does contain mineral oils and parabens so I was cautious as these ingredients aren't friendly however after two goes I am hooked!

Who needs a trip to the salon when I can feel this relaxed at home, it’s very much a deeper exfoliate treatment as the beads are microscopic in size, like sand. (This is why when you get home from the beach your feet are so soft.) The tube costs £11 which is a massive saving on going to the salon to have it done twice a week, if you want to save your pennies like me purchase the exfoliator when you get a No7 voucher from Boots, I got the beaut for £6!

I squeeze a small amount of the white cream onto my fingertips and dot it evenly onto each cheek, forehead, chin and nose. I then gently spread this in outwards circles around my face without applying any pressure (we don’t want to lose skin, just remove dead surface skin), the instructions say to continue the circular motions for 2 minutes which is really addictive and relaxing that I just want to carry on until I reveal my new face hiding underneath!
Splash this off with some warm water, not a flannel because this will just continue to exfoliate even more. The key is the amount of pressure you apply when using microdermabrasion, as my skin is sensitive I am very careful. NEVER USE MICRODERMABRASION AROUND YOUR EYES AND NOSTRILS. I do the treatment on a Monday and Thursday despite the temptation to do it more you shouldn't do this more than twice a week.

I can see results instantly with this product and when the pink tint on my skin fades after the treatment I’m left with baby soft skin, the microdermabrasion takes away dead skin on the surface and leaves you with the new, healthy skin underneath so it is important to look after the new skin. Use a moisturiser with SPF to avoid burning the ‘new born layer’ it will also drink up the moisture and thank you for it. The treatment is supposed to be effective on fading scars and I have seen a difference in my acne scars after 2 uses but they recommend 4 uses is when the affects will really show. No7 also do a body microdermabrasion which may help stretch marks and other scars.

I will be tracking my progress and updating you with the affects the treatment is having on my blemishes and scars, so far I’m loving it and the comments have turned from suggestions to complements about my ‘glow’, don’t think I've had a glow before. Whoopee! 

A trick for girls who can't use eyeshadow

I personally think every time I put eyeshadow on it looks like I've been hit pretty hard in the face, not a good look on a 5’ 2” delicate flower like myself. Okay so I don’t have the best brushes or MAC shades but I can’t force myself to splash on something I don’t enjoy. On others the smoky eye or electric colours look divine, especially Tanya Burr but I just can’t seem to make it work! If you are like me and want something a bit different to eyeliner on your eyes for once I have come across a tip that is great for the ‘barely there’ shaded eye look.

The secret is… Bronzer. Stop me now if this is common knowledge but if you own a bronzer it should match your skin tone pretty well and provide the perfect brown contouring shade, so why not use it in your crease! 
To match my pale skin tone my current favourite bronzer is the EtudeHouse Corset Bronzer in 04 Light Shading (perfect eye shadow name, right?)
I tried to keep the look minimal and natural but it can be easily built up if desired.

Start by using your usual pressed powder or a nude eyeshadow; pack this onto the lid to disguise any darkness using your fingers or brush. The best part is you don’t need to be too precise as the colour should match you perfectly. Then simply take a fluffy crease brush (here I used my Ted Baker eye brush) and generously blend the bronzer through the crease and the outer corners of the eyes for subtle shading. Carry this on under the eye or use brown eyeliner if preferred, keep layering the bronzer for a smoky eye or leave it here like I did for a natural look.
No7 Translucent Loose Powder
Complete with lashings of mascara, (I used my all-time favourite Maybelline Great Lash) and a swish of eyeliner. I then finished it off with my No7 High Shine Lip Crayon in Delicate Pink and some CliniqueMoisture Surge Tinted Moisturiser in 02 Ivory.
This look has changed my perception on eyeliner and I am attempting more adventurous shades in the future, but let’s keep it simple for now.

If you have any tips leave a comment! Don’t forget to follow for more!
Little Lottie xo