Things to do in the summer holidays

Things to do in the summer holidays

The summer holidays are fab, especially when you get to year 11 and onwards because you get months off. However, you can quickly run out of ideas for things to do and become bored – which is still better than being at school/college/uni, but I’ve put together a list of fun things to do in the sun! I don’t actually get a summer holiday this year as I’m working full time, so I’m going to live my summer through this blog post instead – be sure to let me know what you’ve got up to so far this summer!

Breakfast dates

On a warm sunny day, I love getting up early – something I don’t usually do – and going out to get breakfast. You can go with friends, family or just go alone and sit and read a book. I personally love a McDonald’s breakfast – you can’t beat those snack wraps with some pancakes. It’s just nice to get up early and make the most of the sunshine and it’s a nice alternative to going out with friends for pizza or burgers etc.

Going for a bike ride

I feel like nobody ever goes for bike rides anymore, or at least not round where I live, and I used to absolutely love riding my bike. It’s a way to do some exercise and it’s fun at the same time. Why not bike it with a friend or two to a local park and get some ice creams or coffees? Make it an all day thing and do an all round trip around your town and play tourist for the day.

Cafe crawl

Just like a bar crawl, but for cake and coffee. Go around your town and visit loads of cafes and sample all the coffees. Again, this is something you could do with friends or alone – take your best mate and spend the day gossiping or take your laptop and do that summer homework you’ve been avoiding.

Movie marathons

Get your friend(s) round for a Harry Potter marathon or a Star Wars marathon – whatever takes your fancy. Go shopping together and buy a trolley full of your favourite unhealthy snacks and set up your living room to be all cosy with fairy lights and blankets. Or if it’s a beautiful sunny day, why not set up a tent in the garden and watch films on your laptop?

Go to your nearest beach

Why not pick a nice day and catch a train to your nearest beach? Or drive if you’re lucky enough to be that close to a beach. You could even go for a breakfast date first and then go to the beach for the day. If you’re older and drive, take the opportunity for a road trip. Put together a summer playlist on Spotify and go on a road trip.

Take a trip to Ikea

Going to Ikea is like going to Disney World for me, it’s never a quick trip and you can turn it into a full day event and treat yourself to meatballs and everything. Even if you’ve not got any money to spend, use the displays for inspiration – I love just getting ideas from homeware shops. Take your best friend and push them round in the trolley for the full experience.

Get creative

Do a little google search and find some fun creative things to do. Set yourself up outside with some music and make something spectacular in the sunshine. Or if it’s a typical rainy English day, put your favourite film on and get making while watching.

Go camping

You don’t have to go far, you could always just camp in your back garden. Have an all-nighter with your best friend and watch your favourite shows until the sun starts to rise.

Make yourself a reading list

One thing I always do in the summer is make myself a reading list and a reading goal. Make the most of those long warm summer evenings and sit outside working your way through your reading list.

Have a cocktail making night with friends

If you’re a bit older, why not buy yourself a cocktail kit and get together with friends for the evening and make your own cocktails? It’s great buying fancy cocktails in bars but it’s so much more fun to make them yourself! Experiment and discover a new combination.

Get volunteering

Why not do some volunteer work with some friends? You can have fun, do a good deed and add something to your CV all at the same time. Admittedly, I’ve never done this, but I wish I had and I’d like to in the future. Why not start small and do the gardening at your Nan’s or re-decorate for her? Offer to cut your elderly neighbour’s lawn or wash their car?

Re-decorate your room

I absolutely love decorating, I’d re-decorate my room every six months if I had the money and my parents would let me. In 2015 I saved up some money and spent my first week of summer re-decorating and I loved it. If you haven’t got much money, why not just give the walls some fresh paint or have a move around? You could just hang up some tapestry and paint your drawers a different colour. Make a memory board (I have a post on how to make one here) or buy some cheap prints of quotes and make a display on your wall with them.

Go to a theme park

I know quite a lot of schools in the UK have an end-of-year trip to Alton Towers, Drayton Manor, Thorpe Park etc, but if you weren’t lucky enough to go, why not make your own summer trip? Get together with your friends and either blackmail a parent to take you or catch a train or bus to your nearest theme park for the day. If you’re not a huge lover of rides, you could go to a safari park or a water park?

Go swimming

If it’s a nice sunny day, find your nearest outdoor pool or go to a water park. Alternatively, most swimming pools do fun sessions where they get huge obstacle courses out during the summer – take some friends or maybe even go with your siblings and battle it out on the floats.

Let me know in the comments what your plans are for the summer, or what you’ve already got up to – I’m always looking for new inspo. Also let me know whether you like to do any of these things! Thanks so much for reading and look out for a little Rosegal.com clothes haul going up on my blog tomorrow evening. Make sure you pop your email in the subscribe section to the right to be the first to know when I put up a new post!

May favourites

May favourites

This month I’ve been loving a lot of things so it’s been really difficult to narrow it down. First up would definitely have to be Sainsbury’s new marble/rose gold stationery range. If you follow my Instagram you may have seen my story where I was going on about wanting to buy every single thing – and this was no word of a lie. They had so so many pretty notebooks and we all know I am a major notebook hauder. However, I managed to limit myself to just three items (although I will definitely be going back for more after pay day) and I picked up this marble design ‘Things to do’ clipboard, these glittery tapes and this rose gold pen pot which I am using to hold my growing collection of beauty blenders!

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I’ve also really been loving bralettes this month. As the weather has finally got its shit together in England and got warm, I’ve been loving wearing bralettes as they are so comfy. I bought the white one from Tesco this week and I’m just obsessed! These are my favourite three right now, from the plain black is from Topshop and the rose embroidered one is from Primark. You can find my Primark bralette and lots of other purchases from Primar, New Look, H&M etc, in my Huge Holiday Haul post!

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I’ve also been enjoying reading Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. I’m only about a third of the way through, but so far I’m enjoying it. I started this book about this time two years ago but so hooked on I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson that I never ended up finishing it. The book is your typical good girl meets bad boy kind of book, but I’m a sucker for that kind of thing in the summer. The book is often compared to the likes of Twilight and Fifty Shades, so if you enjoyed any of those you’ll probably enjoy Beautiful Disaster.

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I decided last week to invest in a selfie ring light. I originally bought the light to use for blog posts, as my bedroom is north facing and so doesn’t get a lot of sun light, taking blog pictures isn’t always easy. Therefore, I thought the light would just brighten up flat lays that little bit – and it does. You may have seen me raving about the light on my Instagram story, because I was just so impressed with how bright and useful the tiny thing is. It was just £5 on Amazon, which I think is great! It also definitely makes a big difference to selfies. So often I go to take picture of a make-up look for Instagram or a blog post and it never looks half decent, but the light really works its magic – I’d definitely recommend.

I finally managed to find a pair of loafers I like on Boohoo a couple of weeks ago, and for the last half of May they are pretty much all I’ve worn. I managed to grab them in a sale for just £15 and although I’ll admit they definitely aren’t the shoes you want to go for a hike in (I spent the day walking around the NEC in Birmingham in them and came back with some lovely blisters) they’re ideal for just going to work in or going out for a meal in. You can find them here if you fancy a look.

Finally, while the weather has been nice the past couple of weeks, I’ve been living in my NYX soft matte lip cream in the shade Athens. It’s a really summery-pinky shade and although it isn’t what I usually go for, I’m loving it.

What have you been loving this May? Let me know in the comments below!

I’m just going to add in a bit of shameless self-promo here – if you haven’t already, go check out my Instagram here and give it a follow if you fancy it as I’m so close to hitting 2k! Thank youuuu! If you’re interested in any of my other social media links you can find them here.

Thanks for reading! Why not check out my last post- Favourite Five Lipsticks?

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Favourite five lipsticks

Favourite five lipsticks

You may already be aware from my blog that I am a real lipstick lover. You don’t even want to know how many I have. I thought I’d do a ‘favourite five’ for my many many lipsticks. Why not let me know in the comments what your favourite five are? Are any of yours the same as mine?

First up would have to be my Tanya Burr lipstick in the shade pink cocoa. I really love how creamy and moisturising this lipstick feels and at the same time is really long lasting. Not to mention the colour which is just as gorgeous as the packaging.

 

Would I really be a beauty blogger if MAC Velvet Teddy wasn’t in my top five? It has got to come in a close second. Again, it feels really moisturising and the colour is just that kind of shade that I have ten different variations of because I love it so much.

Next up is my Revolution lipstick in the shade chauffeur, which isn’t that different to Velvet Teddy to be honest, just a little pinker. The reason it makes my top five is mainly because it smells like vanilla, which is amazing. Again, the packaging is really pretty too, it’s a pretty rose gold.

My final two of my five favourites are both NYX products. I know that strictly speaking, the NYX soft matte lip creams aren’t lipsticks but I love this lip cream so much I couldn’t not include it. When I ordered the shade Athens I was expecting it to be a lot more nude-like, but it is actually quite a bright pink – a shade I don’t usually go for. However, I’ve ended up really liking it and it easily lasts all day.

Finally, I’ve had my NYX Euro Trash matte lipstick for ages now and it is still a firm favourite. NYX products are all such good value – they’re high quality products and high street prices. This lipstick is a real autumnal lipstick in a dark nude-y pink but I love it so much that I just wear it throughout summer anyway. I’m pretty sure this lipstick was only a fiver, which is a bargain considering it is definitely as good as any MAC lipstick I’ve ever tried.

Make sure you let me know what your favourite lipsticks/lip products are as I’m always on the look out for more to add to my ever-growing collection. Thanks for reading and keep an eye out for a room-tour kind of post tomorrow. In the meantime why not be friends with me over on my social media? Check out my accounts here.

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MAC vs bareMinerals

MAC vs bareMinerals

You may have seen my review a couple of months ago about MAC‘s Studio Fix Fluid foundation (if not you can check it out here). After two and a half months, it has almost ran out and so I decided to invest in another foundation.

Not that I really had any issues with the Studio Fix – in fact I really liked it – I thought I’d just experiment and see if there was anything better out there.

I’ve heard some really great things about the bareMinerals bareSkin Pure Brightening Serum foundation and the reviews were all raving. At just £3.50 more expensive than the Studio Fix, I thought I’d give it a shot.

Now, the whole idea behind bareSkin is that you feel like your skin is bare. I’ll give it its due, I don’t really feel like I’m wearing any foundation, but the coverage really is really quite light.

Although I will add that it is definitely buildable. But I, personally, don’t really want to be using half a bottle every time I put my foundation on. You can’t have everything though right? I guess that weightless and bare feeling just doesn’t go with high coverage.

That is just my personal preference though, if you’re looking for a light foundation then definitely try bareSkin!

I chose the Bare Porcelain shade, as I am very pale. MAC’s NC10 is just the right shade for me, being the lightest shade available for Studio Fix, and Bare Porcelain was the lightest shade available for bareSkin. However, as you can see in the image, the two colours are kind of different. That is the Studio Fix on the right and that is bareSkin on the left. The bareSkin is really a fair bit darker – not very porcelain.

Facetune I admit, when it’s blended out and covered with my usual powder it isn’t horrifically dark but it definitely is a bit too dark for me. It’ll probably be great for when the weather sorts itself out and I have a tan – but for now I’ll be mixing it with a lighter foundation.

However, that isn’t bareMinerals’ fault that I’m as pale as a ghost. The shade isn’t right for me, and that is fine. What is annoying however, is that they call it ‘bare porcelain’ when in my opinion it is far from it. Also, on the website the image of the shade is almost white, yet in real life it is far from it. So I’m pretty disappointed that the name and image is so misleading.

All of that aside though, the foundation itself isn’t at all cakey and gives my skin a nice glowey look – it does what it says on the tin. When used with my Basic Beauty Tools blender (check out my post on their blenders here) it looks flawless and natural. If I could get a lighter shade I’d probably purchase this again as it is a great feeling and looking foundation, but for now it is just a little too dark. If you’re not particularly pale and not looking for a heavy coverage though, this would be a great foundation for you!

Overall I’d give the bareMinerals foundation a good eight out of ten. However, I’m going to give bareMinerals themselves a poor two out of ten for effort with variety of lighter shades and for making the descriptions of the shades so misleading.

Have you got a foundation you could recommend? Especially a super pale one? I’m still on the hunt for good coverage, lightweight and pale foundations (high street or high end), so leave any recommendations in the comments!

Thanks for reading! Look out for a review on the Friction Free Shaving subscription service coming on Friday – it’s an interesting one. Until then, check out my social media links and give my blog a follow if you want to see more from me!

emmachxrlotte

Huge holiday haul

Huge holiday haul

If you follow my Instagram for my blog you may have seen that I recently went on holiday to Devon. While I was away I ventured in to Exeter for a day to check out their shops – I wasn’t disappointed.

I started off in New Look, which is a shop I’ll always end up back at. I first picked up this gorgeous watch. I already have a more expensive metal watch but wanted something that wouldn’t be tapping on the desk every time I typed something at work. It was an added bonus that the watch is actually really pretty and looks a lot more expensive than it is (it was just £12)!

I also got this pretty embroidered shirt. I’m loving the whole embroidery trend at the moment and this shirt is just perfect for this time of the year and is ideal for work. It was £18, which I didn’t think was too bad at all.

I know the whole band t-shirt thing is kind of controversial and that’s why I’ve held back now for a while and not hopped on the band wagon. But to be honest, I’ve decided I just don’t care anymore and I’ll wear whatever I like. So I picked up this ripped Rolling Stones t-shirt – which I love. I also got this cropped pink jumper. It’s the perfect comfy kind of jumper to lounge around in on a mouldy Sunday and it was well worth the buy.

Lastly, I finally managed to get a light up letter ‘E’! I’ve wanted one of these for so so long but nowhere ever seems to have an E in stock. Of course I couldn’t not buy it. It looks great on my book shelf and is fab for blog and Instagram pictures. I also picked up the infamous golden pineapple that almost every blogger seems to own. Again, it looks great on my shelf and is really pretty. It just means that I can keep rings and little miscellaneous objects that often get lost all together in one pretty dish.

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I also popped in to Primark, of course. I got myself the prettiest and so un-Primark-like underwear set. I feel like Primark have seriously upped their lingerie game recently and have some beautiful sets. I really wish I’d bought more actually as they’d got some seriously pretty bralettes! They were so inexpensive too at just £8 for the bra and £6 for the pants. I also loved the fact that they’re sold separately so you can have a different size  for the top to the bottom – is anyone actually the same size top and bottom? Also, if you have slightly bigger boobs and don’t think you can wear bralettes then maybe give this one a go as it has the extra cross straps across the back for a bit more support!

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I’m an absolute sucker for a playsuit, I love them, and I couldn’t resist this one from Primark. It was only £8 and will be perfect if we actually ever get any warm weather over here (I doubt it).

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As if I don’t already have far too many fairy lights, I picked up these copper wire ones for £4 from Primark because you just can’t ever have too many fairy lights.

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I also popped in to H&M and bought this pretty phone case. I’d actually seen this online and almost got it but when I saw it in the shop I realised it was way prettier in person. The flowers are actually real and have been pressed, which I just think is the best idea to be honest. It was only £5.99 and there were various other cases that I liked there too, H&M have got a good selection.

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I also made a trip in to the Card Factory, because they sell the best candles believe it or not. I bought this lavender candle and it’s just strong enough to be able to tell what it is without being really over powering. I love lighting lavender candles before I go to bed as they help me sleep, if you find it hard to get to sleep you should definitely try it.

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Finally, – which I didn’t actually buy myself but I’m including it in my haul anyway – my friend Emily got me The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr. Coincidentally, I just so happened to have bought her the exact same book and she’s already finished it and seemed to rate it. I’m only about a quarter of the way through though but so far it seems alright – I’ll update you in a later post when I’ve finished it.

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So as you can tell, my whole saving money thing is going well! I regret none of these purchases though, even if my bank account is now crying. Thank you for reading and keep an eye out for an adventure-y post tomorrow, full of pictures from my holiday!

emmachxrlotte