It was a good few months ago now that we went on our sneaky Easter minibreak escape to Montenegro and I’m ashamed that I haven’t had a chance to publish a travel post about it yet! So, before we go on our summer holiday (2 weeks and counting!) I thought it only fair to give our trip a little write up and share our photographs seeing as it was so stunning.

The first question most people asked us when we mentioned where we were going was.. well.. why Montenegro? It’s a fair question. Up to this point we are the only people we know out of all of our friends and extended family that have ever been! Scores of people seem to flood to Croatia these days, so I find the lack of the same enthusiasm for it’s neighbour odd, as Montenegro shares a similar vibe, climate and even looks similar! Plus, it’s still a pretty undiscovered gem, so perfect for a quiet, secret escape!

Our holiday

As it was a quick ‘let’s get out of here’ last minute holiday affair, we decided to go inexpensive and simple. Out of season (early April) the climate in Montenegro looked good and we found a great value all inclusive deal at a five star hotel in the holiday beach resort of Budva. All inclusive is not usually something we would go for our main holiday because we like to cook for ourselves and eat out in different places, but for the type of super relaxing short break we wanted we decided to go for it.

The hotel was called the Iberostar Bellevue and it was absolutely stunning. I was blown away when we first got there. Mainly because I’ve never seen a beachfront hotel over looking the sea which is also surrounded by spectacular mountains on the other side! The landscape was just something that you would never see in your normal Spain/ Portugal holidays and I couldn’t get over it! I was super happy to take loads of gorgeous photos with the stunning backdrop. Our room was fine, perfectly comfortable and functional with a lovely big balcony and a sea view which we weren’t expecting and was a lovely surprise. We could actually hear the sound of the waves at night which was amazing.

The Iberostar Belleview hotel

The weather we had was mixed. A bit of rain on the first two days so we took the opportunity to explore the local historic town of Budva and the montain city of Kotor to get some culture and sightseeing in. Due to it being out of season, Budva was a bit dead with a lot of shops and restaurants closed, but Kotor was much more lively and seemed to have a lot of tourists visiting despite the weather. Budva would definitely be worth a day trip particularly the old town to see the historic architecture, and the harbour which had some pretty pricey looking sun seekers! There were also some nice craft shops and cute restaurants.

Budva harbour

Budva old town

The city of Kotor was about an hour bus ride away and it was a whole other level of beautiful! If I had visualised a perfect, quaint Eastern European town then this was it. You can climb up some mountains at the back towards a church and get a load of this crazy stunning view.

The holiday was perfect for what we wanted, a ‘do-nothing’, relaxing break with a bit of sunshine.

 

I would thoroughly recommend considering Montenegro for your next holiday. It’s got great summer weather, beautiful safe beaches and stunning landscapes. Kotor is a stunning historic city and well worth a visit, as it’s a pretty small country most of it is accessible with a short car or bus journey. Although it was a bit quiet when we were there, you could tell that they were gearing up for a busy summer season so there would be no shortage of things to do there.

Have you been to Montenegro? Would you consider it?

 

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I’m back!

I know I’ve been a bit absent lately; I’ve had A LOT of work stuff going on recently which is not something that I really talk about in my blog, which I think leads a lot of people to think this is my full time career! I wish it was, but sadly, I also have a full time job. One that has been extremely stressful lately and has taken over most aspects of my life! I’ve really missed blogging.

Anyway, I’m out of the woods and back on my A game! Luckily, I have lots of things to write about and fill you in on! Last weekend was mine and Paul’s first wedding anniversary weekend and we had the most INCREDIBLE time I’ve been so excited to share it! I can’t believe it’s been a year it’s gone so fast!

First up, year one is paper and Paul took it upon himself (cutie that he is) to organise a surprise weekend for me seeing as I was so bogged down with work. Paper being the theme – he prepared 5 paper envelopes for me to open at different times over the weekend, each containing a different surprise activity! Such a cute idea I loved it.

On Saturday (the day before our actual anniversary) when at 9am I was instructed to get up, dressed (smart/casual and comfy!) and pack an overnight bag! Eeeeeek! The first envelope contained lunch reservations at The Urban Meadow Café & Bar, Bayswater; a gorgeous West London restaurant overlooking Hyde Park. I was so impressed with the food there and we pigged out on a three course meal. The puddings in particular were spectacular – check out the fruit crumble I had!

The second envelope contained our booking at La Suite West Hyde Park, our hotel for the evening! It was at this point I realised we were staying in central London for the night so I was super excited trying to guess what we would be doing that evening! We went to check in to the boutique hotel which was absolutely beautiful, all marble bathroom, pure white sheets and a HUGE bed! What is it about nice hotels always having the comfiest beds in the world?! Seriously, it was like lying on a marshmallow.

We had a couple of hours to ‘kill’ before the next envelope, but in that part of London it’s never really killing time as there is so much to do! We wandered around Hype Park for a bit, and despite the dismal forecast the rain held off for us and it was quite warm (more on that later!!). We walked up to Portobello Road market, one of my favourite parts of the city, and enjoyed listening to live music and people watching, perfectly poised in the window of the Electric Diner Notting Hill sipping delicious gin cocktails. We had so much fun and what with me being so busy and stressed out lately it was so so nice to spend some quality time together without distractions.

At 5pm it was back to the hotel and the third envelope contained dinner reservations at the hotel restaurant; a raw and vegan only restaurant! Paul had pre booked the set menu and it was really interesting to try some vegan food as it’s not something I’ve had much experience with in the past! I know he won’t mind me saying (as he agreed!!) that it wasn’t my favourite food in the world – I think it’s safe to say we are both hard-core carnivores! But it was great to do something different. Before I knew it we were in a taxi and it was time for the fourth envelope as we made our way across town.

I was so excited to find out that the evening surprise was tickets to On The Town at the Open Air Theatre in Regents Park! I had a sneaky suspicion it might be the theatre (Paul was adamant the taxi picked us up at 7pm on the dot!) but I never thought he would have remembered that I’d said ages ago that I’d like to see it! I love open air theatre, something about being outside makes it magical, plus the fact that On The Town stars Danny Mac; my Strictly Come Dancing fave!! The theatre itself was amazing, all done up with twinkly fairy lights and an outdoor bar. We made our way to our excellent seats with a bottle of red wine ready for the show to start, and promptly it began to pour with torrential rain! Luckily, Paul had been prepared and asked me to bring a raincoat, even more luckily the theatre were clearly used to this – they waited for the rain to pass and about 10 minutes later they towelled down the stage and the show began! We were lucky – if the rain had been persistent I expect it would have been cancelled as there is so much leaping about in the choreography I don’t think it would be safe! But after one short spell of downpour we were in for a warm and pleasant evening.

The production was fantastic! Dancing, singing and acting all brilliant, wonderful costumes, the play was funny and moving with enough of a nod to the traditional ‘cheesy’ aspect of it but also with new contemporary styling thrown in. And with the natural light going from light, to dusk, to dark and being surrounded by nature made it extra magical for me. I would thoroughly recommend it.

After we stayed the night in the stunning La Suite West Paul said we were going home in the morning (our actual anniversary) so we went home and chilled out for a bit before opening the final envelope which was the best of them all!! Tickets to see Little Mix at their Summer Shout Out tour that evening! I literally jumped around the room when he told me I was SO EXCITED! I’ve been wanting to see them for so long.

And they did not disappoint! WOW those girls have sass and such incredible bods! I could really use some of their confidence!  They really put on a show and sang and danced literally non stop every single hit they sang it – finishing with Shout Out To My Ex and everyone was jumping and singing along it was incred! The weather played nice as well we had beautiful late evening sunshine, I felt like I was loving life at a festival! Seriously girls, you killed it.

 

SO after an amazing and exhausting weekend I can’t believe how lucky I am to have such an amazing husband who knows me inside out. Not just with presents but with the everyday things that really matter, I can’t believe how lucky I am to be married to someone like Paul who makes my life complete. Love you x

 

 

Hey there lovelies!

Today I wanted to tell you about a very exciting launch event that I attended last week. I was absolutely delighted to be asked by Danielle, the lovely founder of ground breaking new skincare product OhMySkin (OMS) to attend the event as a model to demonstrate the product and tell the audience about how my skin felt afterwards. I was super excited about not only being invited to such a brilliant launch event but also to try a product I had heard so many amazing things about!

 

The launch night was held in Walton on Thames, at Bridgeman’s luxury furniture showroom; the perfect backdrop for such an elegant event. When I arrived I was blown away by how beautiful the set up looked and the amazing decorations. The product was displayed pride of place of course which looked absolutely fantastic.

 

 

So what is the product?

OhMySkin is a new and exciting skincare brand which has burst onto the scene with it’s revolutionary Exfoliating and Resurfacing Mask for all skin types. The unique formula contains natural ingredients and active enzymes which remove dead skin cells and brighten the skin in a non-harmful way without using any microbeads or acids which are so often found in high street products. The mask is really flexible in terms of use and can be applied and removed as a ‘flash mask’ or left on for half an hour. One of the things that I find so unique about the product is Danielle’s inspiring vision for it. She told her guests at the event that she came up with the idea when, when she was working full time, she didn’t have the time to attend salons for expensive exfoliation treatments; the idea of creating a product which can give you professional results in the comfort of your own home was born! If you think you’d miss the pampering aspect of a salon – Danielle has thought of that too! The mask is sold with a luxurious Derma Cloth to remove the mask and maximise results as well as a salon headband to pamper yourself! It also comes with a 10x magnifying mirror (yes – you heard that right! And believe me what I saw in there was pretty shocking!!) which is so important to really see your skin and identify problem areas, and then to follow your journey with OMS and see the results for yourself!

 

 

Also, how gorgeous is the branding?! I am in love with that amazing green colour. So eye catching.

 

What I thought

Using the product for the first time on the evening of the launch event I was genuinely so impressed with it for several reasons. Firstly, I have very sensitive skin and I often find that exfoliation masks feel slightly ‘stingy’ on my face but OMS was gentle and worked wonders for my sensitivity. The only sensation was a slight warming feel which was really nice. Danielle applied the mask to my skin during the event to demonstrate how easy it is to apply and lots of people commented how, as it was clear, you actually couldn’t tell I had it on! Having left the mask on for 30 minutes and spritzing it with water to reactivate the enzymes I washed the mask off using the Derma cloth. I was really impressed with this too, the cloth is a really interesting texture which has a thick weave to it, it’s brilliant as it gave my skin that ‘super clean’ feeling which I love!  After removing the mask I could see that my skin was glowing softer and looked brighter, after just one application of the product I was really amazed with the immediate impact!

Something else that I was really impressed by was how Danielle has put a lot of thought into making her product eco-friendly. Microbeads and other ingredients found in many products can have a negative impact on the environment and OMS avoids all of this as well reducing packaging wastage by being totally refillable!

I was lucky enough to receive an OMS pack to take home and I have been using the mask on a weekly basis since the event a few weeks ago. I am so pleased to report that it really works and the results for me have been amazing! I am so pleased to have found this product was delighted to be part of the exciting launch!

 

The launch event was an amazing success and everyone loved the product – I got such a buzz from just being there! I was honoured to share my opinions and first impressions of the product with the guests which was easy – it’s not difficult to talk about something that you like so much! Danielle also spoke about her product with such passion it was really inspiring for me. I had a brilliant time and met some really lovely and interesting local ladies.

 

 

To see the results and my first impressions on the day keep your eyes peeled for my video coming to my YouTube channel very soon! If you would like to find out more about OhMySkin or purchase the product to see the results for yourself you can visit their website here.

Big thank you to Ingrid Weel for the gorgeous images.

Spring is the perfect time to spring clean and shake up your skincare routine. Lately, I’ve really upped my skincare game. I feel like at the age of 25 it’s the right time to really invest time and energy into keeping my skin healthy. It’s so important to be consistent with a regular skincare routine to keep skin looking clear and glowing. Recently, I’ve discovered some gorgeous new products which I absolutely love and have done wonders for me, and I’ve also got some old favourites that I can’t live without! I’m going to share a few of my favourite skincare saviours with you.

Skintifique Cleanser P Hypoallergenic Micellar Water

This is a new addition to my skincare routine which I was recently sent to review. You can read my full review here, but I’ll just summarise what I love so much about it that has meant the Cleanser P is now part of my daily morning skincare routine. Firstly, in the mornings I am usually extremely pushed for time, and the nature of this micellar water means I can literally apply some to a cotton pad and cleanse my face in less than a minute, with no washing, faffing or otherwise! It does a great job; gently removing any traces of makeup from the day before and it really wakes me up and makes my skin feel fresh in the morning. Also, my skin is pretty sensitive so I love how gentle this cleanser is gently and completely hypoallergenic and nasty-free, which is something that is really important to me. If you are looking for something that will give great results with minimal fuss this is a great addition to your routine.

 

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser

The original game changer and forever my favourite. I have been a loyal fan of Liz’s range for years and this cleanser is an enduring winner for me. I use the hot cloth cleanser every night when I’ve got more time and I really want to feel like I can wash the day away by deep cleansing my face. The product lathers up into a thick foam which I love because it makes my skin feel so clean and fresh afterwards, and then removing it with a warm muslin cloth (as recommended) helps to sooth and deep cleanse all my pours. A truly luxurious product.

Exuviance Bionic Oxygen Facial Mask

Now, this baby is something I picked up from the wonderful Exuviance skincare stall at BlogConLDN and I must say I am totally hooked and so glad I discovered it! I have had oxygen facials before, in salons (usually at great expense) and have found the results to be excellent. The benefits of bringing oxygen to your skincare are many, brightening dull skin, renewing, rejuvenating and so on. The Bionic Oxygen Facial mask contains pure essential oxygen plus Exuviance’s Bionic Complex for energising and bringing new life to the skin. I have found the results to be outstanding and this is now a staple item in my skincare collection. It’s on the high-end side in regards to price, but in my opinion totally worth it! I use the product roughly once a week and notice how bright, clear and glowing my skin feels afterwards. Five stars Exuviance – very impressed.

Liz Earle Intensive Nourishing Treatment

This mask is my next choice and is an old favourite of mine. I like it so much because it’s gentle enough to use regularly (several times a week) and is suitable for even the most sensitive skin. It’s naturally active ingredients promote brightening and the plant oils nourish skin to make it feel softer and smoother. I have used this mask regularly for years and I still find it a great mid-range choice which gives great results.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Hydra Gel Eye Masks

I must admit despite Elemis’ popularity I have never really tried many of their products at home but I recently received a sample of these collagen eye masks and I thought I had to include them in this little line up. Even at 25 (which is not old by my standards!) I am self conscious about fine lines and tired looking eyes. This mask comes in the form of little eye patches and are clinically proven to instantly reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. As I wouldn’t say that I don’t have any really noticeable wrinkles I can’t say for sure whether they do ‘instantly reduce’ them but I did see an immediate brightening and refreshing of my eye area and I was really impressed with the product. I will definitely be re-purchasing.

Clarins Multi Active Day Cream

Last but not least, this little wonder which has actually caused me to change my lifelong faithful moisturiser! Don’t get me wrong, I still love my Liz Earle moisturiser but for now I have switched to the Clarins day cream, simply for how incredible it makes my skin feel! It smells amazing, is suitable for all skin types and after using it my skin feels smooth, tightened, brightening and just generally gorgeous! I can’t recommend it highly enough.

*****

I hope you enjoyed my skincare saviours round up! I love writing about skincare and trying new products. I know good quality skincare can be a pricey investment, but I feel these products are a mixture of mid-range and high-end, but are all high quality products which are really worth it for the excellent results they give.

What are your skincare saviours?

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Morning lovelies! I’ve done quite a few hair-related posts lately which is not like me at all. I genuinely neglect my hair – hardly ever having it cut and I’m generally just a wash and go kinda girl. I rarely use product in it – other than the occasional bit of Argan oil when it’s feeling super dry. However, when I was a #BlogConLDN (we are going all the way back to March now! It’s gone so quickly!) I had a chance to chat to a lovely lady from Natural World Haircare about my barnet. She ‘diagnosed’ my hair as being fine and damaged, I knew it was damaged that’s for sure and I always have issues getting volume and lift into it so I guess it is pretty fine. She recommended that I try the Chia Seed Oil range which would help give my hair volume and a bit of life. I was excited to try it out and see.

I’m a big fan of Chia Seeds in ‘real life’ and I know all about the benefits of eating them, but not much about what they can do for my hair! Apparently the seeds are fantastic for giving hair natural shine and making it fuller and more bouncy. Natural World use only organic Chia Seed Oil, which I love, and their products are paraben, phosphate and gluten free (I didn’t know that was a thing with hair shampoo – but there you go!).

I have been using the Chia Seed range shampoo, conditioner and hair oil for several weeks now and the results are positive. I do feel like after using them my hair does have a bit more ‘bounce’ and it definitely feels less flat at the roots. I have noticed a more shiny appearance as well and I feel like my hair has become stronger. The only thing I’ve been finding tricky is where I usually use products which are geared more towards deep conditioning (as my hair is so dry) rather than volumising – I’ve been finding my hair is much more tangled when I’m done washing it than I’m used to. It takes me a bit longer with the Tangle Teaser than it does with other ranges, but once my hair is brushed and dried the results are fantastic and I’m very impressed.

To find out more about the Chia Seed Oil range or any other Natural World products then you can check them out online here.

***Please note: I was sent this product for reviewing purposes, however the opinions are my own***

Have you tried any of the Natural World products? What do you prefer to use in your hair?

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