January can be tough. We all know it because it’s the same every year. Christmas is over taking the delicious food, parties and lazy mornings in bed. Leaving large tummies and larger credit card bills. Oh yeah, and it’s freezing cold outside.
Alas, I’m here to lift our spirits with some simple ideas to give you peace of mind.
- REORGANISE ONE AREA OF YOUR HOME Focusing on one place such as the bedroom or lounge is easily achievable. My desk quickly becomes cluttered and dusty so I chose this as my area to make over. Moving some furniture around and throwing any junk away makes a huge difference and it feels really good.
- DITCH THE GYM Right now gyms are packed full of people trying to get fit as a new years resolution. I find a busy gym super stressful. It’s much nicer to work out at home. The lean machines have a you tube channel with great routines (and healthy recipes) to get you ripped. If you prefer a zen workout then go for yoga with Adriene. She just started a 31 day course called yoga revolution which I love.
- MAKE A JUICE OR SMOOTHIE A simple green juice is a great choice after your workout or first thing in the morning. If you prefer something a little sweeter and more filling then check out my skin boosting hyaluronic acid smoothie recipe.
If you follow these three tips I promise you will feel better about yourself with that inner feeling of ahhhhhhhh.
Don’t forget to join the party on instagram and twitter!
When your favourite fragrance gets some fancy new packaging you know it’s going to be a great week. The Woods by Brooklyn Soap Company has been serving me in the fragrance department since last Spring when I first got my hands on a bottle. What I like most is that it works all year round. Somehow it’s rich and sweet enough for the Winter and perky enough for the Summer. Magic! For now, this is my signature sent and I’m feeling it. You can pick yourself up a bottle from here!
Top: Mandarine, Black Pepper, Fresh Ginger, Bergamotte, Tyme.
Heart: Absinthe, Iris Absolut, Red Pepper, Nutmeg.
Fond: Myrrhe, Amber Musk, Benjoin Siam, Cashmir Wood, Incense.
This guide is based upon photo’s from my phone. They weren’t taken with the intention of creating a guide, they are from my wanders around the capital. You can visit all of the places shown below whilst walking. It will take roughly 1-3 hours to see everything depending on your pace. Let me show you the way.
The first two pictures show St Paul’s Cathedral up close. Then among the skyline from the viewing deck of the switch house building at TATE Modern. Both places are super touristy but I love them all the same. When visiting the TATE Modern I get the bus or tube to St Pauls station. On a Sunday morning it’s super quiet and great for wandering around the City of London. This area is only busy Monday to Friday during work hours. The tate is always busy, but it’s worth it, especially with the new building which opened last year. In the second image you can see the Millennium bridge which takes you from St Pauls across the river to the entrance at the tate. This offers the best views of the river Thames, Tower Bridge, Waterloo Bridge and Shakespeare’s Globe. Once you reach the entrance I recommend heading straight up to the viewing deck in the switch house building. You can grab a coffee, enjoy the best views of London and then make your way down whilst exploring the galleries.
Afterwards, head out and when you are facing the river take a left and walk 5-10 minutes along the Thames path toward Blackfriars Station. Keep going and you will find the Mondrian Hotel. If the weather is good. By good I mean not raining. You can sit outside at Sea Containers restaurant and have drinks and snacks. There are so many places to eat around here that I prefer to grab small dishes at different places along the way.
From here you can continue along the Thames path in the same direction and you will soon reach South Bank. There’s lot’s to see with shops or places for food and coffee. You will also find the British Film Institute (BFI). If you walk on for another 10 minutes you will see the Royal Festival Hall. Here you can walk the Hungerford Bridge over the river to Embankment. Follow signs to Trafalgar Square, Big Ben or Somerset House. All of these places are close to Covent Garden (pictured below). The areas are well sign posted so you will easily find directions.
If you are looking to spend a lazy few hours seeing the tourist hot spots then this route has you covered. And when walking you will encounter many hidden gems along the way. I’ve got a bunch more photo’s in my phone that I will upload soon in another post. These pictures were posted over the last year on my instagram.
The Plasma Essentials Collection by Perricone MD came to my rescue this Winter and I’m going to tell you why. The Blue Plasma Cleansing Treatment was out of my comfort zone as it’s non-rinse (kind of like a micellar water). If you wear make-up this is a good option as your first cleanse as part of double cleanse in the evening. Or simply as a morning cleanse. I use it in the morning and splash my face with water afterwards, I couldn’t cleanse without a wet cloth or a thorough splash of water, it wouldn’t feel right. When I use this my face feels especially clean but not stripped.
Cold Plasma Eye is a wonderful eye cream that I’m using at night. Even a generous amount absorbs quickly without a trace of residue. It’s the best. It’s worth mentioning this smells a little like fish. I imagine it’s marine collagen or fish oil. What this means is the nutritious ingredients haven’t been diluted to make it smell pretty. I prefer this as I want the best for my skin. And it doesn’t smell bad, just different.
Containing three types of hyaluronic acid Hyalo Plasma works as a serum and is a pleasure to use. It’s a gel consistency that feels concentrated and rich yet lightweight. It’s not sticky and leaves my skin feeling properly hydrated.
Photo Plasma is an intensely rich moisturiser with SPF 30. Whilst it hasn’t been fragranced I think this smells very nice. It really is rich, especially when used in combination with the Hyalo Plasma. If you have dry, dull skin I expect you will love it. I appreciate the SPF 30 as anything lower wouldn’t be enough for me. This leaves a nice sheen on the skin which lasts for an hour or two. I have a feeling make-up will sit nicely on top of this as it doesn’t feel greasy. If you have an issue with shine then this won’t work for you. If you like a glossy glow from your moisturiser then give it a go.
The products work very well together and this makes great sense as a set. I need another cleanser in addition. I happened to be using the Perricone MD Gentle Cleanser (it’s so good) and for me this completes the set to perfection. It’s currently on 50% discount but most places are sold out. It’s still available here though.
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My evening skincare routine changes throughout the week. I’m currently using these five products a couple times a week as they hydrate, moisturise, brighten and re-balance my skin. I start off with a hot cloth cleanse using CLINIQUE take the day off, cleansing balm. Before I tell you why I like this I’d like to mention that this product contains ETHYLHEXYL PALMITATE. This ingredient is a PKO derivative which means it’s made from palm oil. This can be seen as controversial as it’s been widely documented that the production of palm oil causes deforestation. Estée Lauder who own CLINIQUE have addressed this issue very clearly and thoroughly, explaining how they source palm oil or it’s derivatives in a responsible and sustainable way whilst supporting local communities. Having been properly informed I’m happy to use this product and also recommend it. If you are at all concerned please check out this info from Estée Lauder.
This balm is a great first step in a double cleanse. It removes my SPF easily and gently. I find it lightweight compared with other balms and it’s fragrance free. For the second cleanse I use Marula, buchu botanical enzyme polish by AFRICAN BOTANICS. This is an incredibly nourishing face scrub that I recommending leaving of for a few minutes, allowing your skin to drink up the nutrients this product is full up with. It contains micro algae plus a multitude of balancing essential oils including bergamot, rose, green rooibos tea, aloe ferox and a little tea tree to detox. When massaged gently onto damp skin this sloughs away any dead skin leaving my skin looking bright and soft to the touch. FYI I can be sensitive to potent essential oils and with this I experience no irritation.
After rinsing I apply Hydrating B5 by SKINCEUTICALS. This is a lightweight clear serum that feels wet on the skin before absorbing entirely, without residue. This contains hyaluronic acid which is one of the most important skincare ingredients. It’s like a glass of water for your face!
On top of the serum I add a few drops of ALEX CARRO Balancing face oil. Not only does this smell like a spa it nourishes my skin overnight as it’s full of nutrient dense oils. I posted a full review on the brand here. Make the most of your cleansing balm and face oil by giving your face a good massage. This will drain the skin of toxins and boost circulation for added glow.
Lastly I finish off with the new Radiance Renewal Mask by Paula’s Choice. I tested this out with various product combinations to see if it really does give the skin a lasting glow. And I find that it does. This is an overnight gel mask containing olive oil and many other plumping and skin softening ingredients. With all Paula’s Choice products this is fragrance free and backed up with much clinical research and trials. I apply a generous amount (almost a full pump) all over my face and around my eyes. It’s not sticky and it doesn’t dry taught on the skin. It’s to be left on overnight and that’s what I do. The next day after my morning cleanse I always find an extra sheen on my skin that lasts until the next day unless I use it again.
Disclaimer. Brands and PR agencies regularly send me products and clothes as samples. I only feature/wear/review the things that suit my personal style and that I enjoy using. What works for me may not work for you. To be on the safe side, try before you buy.