Saturday, 1 August 2015

Hair Braids

Hi everyone! I hope you have been enjoying hair week as much as I have!
Today I'm going to be talking about hair braids, as it is something I have been following a lot in Instagram recently! 

Now my hair is much longer, I want to experiment with different hairstyles more, so expect to see a lot more in the future. I always thought braids were kind of childish, but some of the braid gurus I follow have proved that if done well, braids can be a fashion accessory, and look really sophisticated and pretty.

That said, I need a bit more practice with my braids to make them look as good as the people I follow, and maybe a hair cut to rid those fly always! You'll have to bear with me for picture quality because I only have my phone, and I had to take them all myself so back of head shots are a pain! But here we go!

French Plaits

This is a style I used to don a lot as a child, so wearing these got me a little self conscious about looking 4. However working in a restaurant means my hair has to be away, and my annoying baby hairs go mad in the heat and stress, so this style works perfectly to tuck them away.

I did two variations of this, one braid going into a normal plait and the other into a fishtail.

Middle parting Braid

If you follow my Instagram you'll see that I did this a while ago when Perrie Edwards (soon to be Malik) did a braid down the middle of her hair.

Her braid is very small and intricate, and quite difficult to recreate, so I've done mine much chunkier, and I think it looks better with my thick hair

Fish tail pony

Any pony with a braid always reminds me of Blake Lively as she is a lover of a stylish pony on the red carpet

Obviously her hair is styled with much longer hair, but I love the messiness of the braid but also how cool it looks. It's so easy to do and can be worn night or day.

Tumbledown Braid

I completely made up the name for this one but saw it somewhere on Instagram and can't for the life of me find the picture now! This braid is actually really easy to do, but I think it looks quite sophisticated. You start by French braiding the front of your hair and pulling more hair round from the back to create the look. It's a braid to be worn on the side so a few clips at the back to make sure nothing falls out may be necessary.

Milkmaid braids

Milkmaid braids often seen on the likes of Zoella, are a really simple way to make a pretty up do.

I'm using all my real hair in this post, so unfortunately my hair isn't long enough to wrap around my head, so I've done a smaller variation of it.

To achieve this look, I simply put my hair in a half pony, split the remaining hair into two equal sections and then wrapped around to the top of my head and pinned down.

If I'd picture myself head on you'd see the tufted ends sticking up in the middle of my hair, because it still isn't long enough to tuck under the opposite braid, but when it is long enough, I think this is a style I will wear a lot as it is a kind of natural hair band!

Wrap around fishtail

This is one that I still need to work on, as braiding around your head is very fiddly as you have to swap your hands around. I got inspiration to do this from the super mum I montaged up above, instagrammer and blogger Amber Fillerup.

She is a dream when it comes to braiding, and once she's braided, she always pulls it out to mess it up and look like she just threw it together.

I can't do the Dutch style or French style fishtail so I did a normal French plait and wrapped it around into a fish tail

This is a really pretty braid and is quite Elsa (from Frozen of course) so would be a great one for kids!

I am definitely going to be doing more braids, and practicing different styles of braids, so keep and eye out on my Instagram in the future!

Hope you enjoyed!

Friday, 31 July 2015


Invisibobbles have been on the market for a while now, and have been said to be a hair band that causes no damage to the hair, stops annoying kinks in your hair after long use, and to not pull or create split ends. They cost £3.75 in boots, and I tried them because I often get headaches when wearing my hair up as my hair is very thick and heavy so can cause real strain on my scalp.
I am unsure how the spiral design prevents tangles, because you'd think it would cause more, but it claims to be compatible with all hair types.

I found when wearing my Invisibobble, there were no tracesn of kinks afterwards at all, however I still had the same problems I usually do with normal hair bands unfortunately. As its a plastic material, I found I still got headaches, if not slightly worse ones due to the strong hold of the bands. 
I also find they get tangled in my hair very easily, but this could be due to my damaged hair as it hasn't been cut in. Long time so my split ends are very much there reeking havoc! 

I think they are a great idea though, and they come in a range of colours so are good for children. I will carry on using my invisibobbles but maybe not have them so tight, as the hold is really strong! If you have thinner hair I think invisibobbles would be good for you, as they should glide easier through your hair. 
One last thing I will say is, if you have them in your wrist, be prepared for people to ask why you have an old fashioned telephone wire round your arm! 

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

New Zealand Forest and Bird Hair Care

Whilst in my travels in New Zealand, I saw these little travel shampoo and conditioners in a posh hotel. I noticed they were made from natural ingredients,  which im a real sucker for when it comes to cosmetics, so I snapped them up to use at a later date. 

As you may know, one of New Zealand's biggest produce is Manuka honey. The bees go to the Manuka plants to feed and it makes then produce this incredibly Rich honey which is great for the body and has healing properties. These Forest and Bird hair washes contain Manuka honey oil, and the smell is very floral, but also has a hint of the honey which is really sweet and pretty.

As I'm a poor traveller, I have been using really cheap hair care, and I've noticed a difference dramatically from my higher end shampoos I was using before. My scalp is really dry and was suffering from a severe case of dandruff a few weeks ago, but since using these, the oil in my hair has balanced out, and just after two uses I could see a difference in my scalp.
The conditioner has been equally as good to smooth out my ends.

What I absolutely love the most about these products, is that Forest and Bird aren't a cosmetics company at all, they are a conservation group who focus on conserving the New Zealand wildlife, such as the rare kiwi which is pictured on the bottle. A percentage of the money goes straight to helping New Zealand's animals, land and oceans

I think at the moment you can only find them in hotels, but if you go to you can see the procure there. This was a really exciting find for me, and I hope you are just as inspired and liked reading about it!

Dove Hair Oil

So I have a bit of a confession with this product, as you know I am travelling Australia, and I have taken up a housekeeping job to work for accommodation. It isn't the most glamorous job, however sometimes you find some real gems when cleaning out empty rooms, that you get to keep for yourself. It's embarrassing and a bit skanky I know, but when you find gems such as this new Dove Hair oil, who is really the one laughing??
This Dove oil is selling itself slightly short by advertising itself just as a hair oil. As it is a dry oil, this can be used on the skin as well, and I have done so and it works nicely! The oil is made from African Macadamia oil, so obviously not to be used if you have a nut allergy. The smell is actually very sweet, and almost has a slight baby wipes smell to it (before use obviously). I have tried other hair dry oils which I am in love with, if you haven't heard me rave about Caudalie's Divine oil then you have clearly never read my blog before, but I would say that this is still nice.
Compared to Caudalie's oil which is a natural brand, I have a feeling from the texture, Dove is a slightly more synthetic oil compared to the natural oil in Caudalie. I think the Dove oil is slightly cheaper in the sense that it leaves more of a shine to the hair, so I wouldn't go over board when using it however I don't have a box so can't read the ingredients., so don't quote me on that.
Having found this, I have absolutely no idea how much it retails for, and the internet has given me about 14 different price points. I am glad I found it however, as Dove isn't a brand I would go searching for hair products in. As it is known for its classic white curved soap with the cut out dove, I associate this brand with soap and soap only, the idea of using their products before would have made me feel like I was rubbing a bar on me no matter what form it came in. I think like many high street brands now though, Dove have realised they need to up their game and come out with more products, and I think they have done well with this one. They're website isn't hugely informative about what it in the product and it gives a brief description of what it should do, so take it from me that if your trying hair oil for the first time, this is a nice one to leave at the ends of your hair for a little bit of hydration.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Hair Plopping

Hair plopping is something I have only heard of recently, but apparently it has been a thing for a while now. Designed to give you bouncy rolling waves, hair plopping accentuates the natural curl to your hair without using heat or styling.

That said, to get this effect you have to prepare to look like a bit of an arse for at least 8 hours.

In order to plop your hair, you must wash as you usually would, and then squeeze out the excess water. From here, you brush your hair to untangle, then must find an old t shirt, and flip your hair forward and lower your head into the towel, hence the 'plopping'. Fold back the long part of the tshirt and tie the sleeves round to the back of your head to secure your Tshirt Turban, and you should look a little something like this. My boyfriend kindly told me I looked like a pirate!

I washed my hair in the morning and left my hair to dry in this turban for about 8 hours. When I unravelled, this was the effect.

My natural wave was definitly more obvious, and my curls were untangled and bouncy and not artificial looking or frizzy. It was still slightly wet so I blowdried my hair which ruined the look a bit, so I would advise putting in some product in your hair to keep the hold.

I tried plopping my hair overnight but found it didn't actually work as well even though most people advise to do it overnight. I found I just woke up with my hair still wet, my t shirt turban hanging off my head and having bags under my eyes from a restless sleep!

As I said before, plopping is designed to accentuate natural curls, so if you have naturally very straight hair, you may need to use some kind of product to help add some curl. I've tried FrizzEase dream curls styling spray before which leaves a wavy finish and also has a good hold.
I think using product in general will always help hair achieve a more curled look. Next time I 'plop' my hair (it sounds so funny) I'll probably use product. Although the effects haven't been too dramatic in my hair, I have seen it work wonders with some videos on YouTube. My hair is very thick so it never fully dries properly in the T shirt which is why I often have to resort to using heat. I will continue to use the plopping technique, but may invest in some products to help add some oomph.

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Lush "Shine So Bright"

Hi everyone, if you have my Instagram you will have seen that this week I am starting hair week. Although in my last post I said I had nothing to review product wise, I have managed to accumulate lots of hair products over the last few weeks so thought it would be a good event!

One product I have had for the duration of my travels however, is this Lush 'Shine so Bright' pot which was a leaving gift from a lovely little friend. She said it would help smooth down and prevent my inevitable split ends for when I can't get my hair cut.

Being a Lush product, it is all natural and smelling lovely. The scent is Neroli which is one of my favourite smells, and it lasts in your hair all day. The grapefruit mixed with orange flower makes your hair feel zesty and fresh. 
The balm comes in a little tin and to be honest, I have been using this product wrong for a very long time! Before, I would rub the balm with a finger, and smooth down the ends of my hair at a very slow pace, but after a bit of research, I found this video on YouTube made by Erica Vega -a sassy Lush lover- ,which revolutionized the ability of this product!

As she says in the video, the balm contains coconut oil (my favourite oil from the nut world!), Shea butter and Olive Oil.

By rubbing the balm onto the hands, you can work the product into the whole of your hair, and as you rub the balm on your warm skin, it melts and becomes easier to work with. As Erica also points out, it is great for taming flyaways so I regularly use this on the fluffy baby hair I have around my face if I am wearing my hair up, as it is a non greasy way to stick down any hair.

This little balm is great to throw in your handbag and is only for £4.00. It will be a great product to carry around in the summer when the humidity starts to rise and take over your hair!

Monday, 20 July 2015

Sophie's Cohorted Beauty Box

Hi everyone! You may have seen the other day on my Facebook and Twitter page that I was going to do something a little different on my blog... well this is it!

As you know I have been travelling for a little while now and am currently in Australia trying to recuperate some money! That said, finding new and exciting beauty products to try, is a little difficult at the moment as I can't actually afford to try an new ones, cry. I haven't forgotten about my little blog though, so I've been thinking of ways to keep it exciting.

The other day, I was catching up with my best friend and fellow beauty lover Sophie, and she messaged me about a new beauty box she tried. The message itself was like a review, so I've invited her to do a post on my blog as I thought it was something you guys would definitely like to hear about!

Sophie is that friend that the Gretchin Weiners was talking about when she said "you wouldn't buy a skirt without asking your friend first if it looked good on you". Sophie extends her expertise to makeup and nail varnishes too, so I don't buy any beauty products without her approval first!

Sophie is also getting married next year and I am going to be her bridesmaid, so expect her to feature a lot more in my blog in the future!

So now you know a little bit about her, I present to you without further ado... Sophie!

Wearing the 'Wicked Queen' lipstick

Well fellow beauty addicts, I know I am not alone in the search for a beauty box that offers real excitement and proper products - not just samples and miniature bits and bobs that seem to collect dust under the bed - but real products. So I am so happy and relieved to be able to say - I have found it!! 

Cohorted still seem to be fairly new to the beauty world (but maybe that's why they're so good!) but in my opinion I would not be able to go back to the others (that will remain nameless) now I have discovered this black bowed box that was delivered to my front door this month..

It appears that you need to be ready to click that order button as soon as the boxes become available as there are only a limited number each month. Luckily, there is a specific date and time so you can get yourself prepared for the big day - I've just managed to order myself the August box! Of course, I must mention, it does come at a slightly higher price point. You will find you are paying double the price to the others on the market but when they're worth at least triple the £20 price point - you will not be disappointed. So let's have a look at my July box..

Let me begin by explaining that I wasn't crazy about all of the four products I received - however, this is only because I already own one of them. This is the Nails Inc Matte polish in 'Gatwick'. I am a fan of Nails Inc polishes and I particularly love their Kensington top coat but red mattes just don't do it for me. That's not to say others wouldn't enjoy it but I do think it's one I will pass on to a friend as I wouldn't get much use out of it.

The second product I like but, as its only a 50ml and not full size, it didn't wow me. What I would say is that I am a fan of Gucci fragrances so being able to try the 'Black' variation of Gucci Guilty did make me put it straight in the shower! I love a shower gel and this filled the bathroom with a gorgeous oriental scent with notes of violet and amber. I feel like a luxurious shower gel can be well spent money and even better if you layer it with your perfume for a longer lasting scent.

On to the best bits! I was thrilled to receive this next product - I'm not a tanning expert nor am I one of those lucky beings who manages to pick up a natural bronzed glow! However - a gradual tan seems pretty perfect for me as it isn't too scary! Not only does St Tropez's Gradual Tan offer me a 'beautiful radiant glow' but its 4 in 1 technology also promises to tone, firm & moisturise. What more can I ask for - a beach-perfect body all year round? I wish! Retailing at £20.00, this was so worth it!

The final 'piece de resistance' was the beautiful Snow White & The Huntsman collection by Diego Dalla Palma. Now I've heard about this brand through various beauty blogs but haven't yet managed to get my hands on anything! The collection offers six gorgeous eyeshadow shades with a mixture of mattes and shimmers, a Dark Night eye pencil and stunning Wicked Queen red lipstick. A fan of all things glamorous and Snow White, I dipped straight in. The lipstick is beautiful, it's the perfect red and glides on with fantastic pigment and a really light, non-sticky feel - it's gone straight in my handbag! (pictured above) The eye pencil also has a good pigment to it and I found it really easy to apply with precision. The shadows are all very easy to use and blend really nicely with each other - with six different shades you can achieve many looks. Win-win all around!

All in all I am one happy beauty bunny! I am so excited for my next box and look forward to Cohorted setting up a subscription option which is apparently coming soon!