Monday, 30 September 2013

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley & Ellie Goulding London Fashion Week

As we all know, this autumn saw the return of London Fashion Week, and I am extremely jealous of those of you that got to go! One particular celebrity that really caught my eye over the week was Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. With her effortless good looks and a body to die for, (let's be honest!), she was bound to stand out from the crowd.

2013 definitely seems to be Ellie Goulding's year; being "the darling of Fashion Week" (quote from Look Magazine), having best friends like Rita Ora and Cara Delevingne  and even singing at Kate and Will's wedding reception. Having always been a huge fan of Ellie, I've really enjoyed seeing her settle in to her rightful place with the other A list celebs. Both Ellie and Rosie looked amazing over Fashion Week and these are a few of my favourite images.


Even without make up, how beautiful does Rosie still look? Also I wish I could pull off a cut out jumpsuit, a girl can dream!


I love how Ellie can pull off old school glamour one day and then something as simple as a jumper and leather shorts another, and look stunning either way.


Jealousy isn't the nicest trait to have, but after those images, it's hard not to feel it!

Amy x

Friday, 27 September 2013

The Five Month Plan: Results

Five months ago I posted about a plan I had put in place, which was basically a list of things I wanted to achieve between then and now (you can read it here). I promised a results post on the 22nd of this month, but things have been quite hectic so I apologise for being late!



1. Get my first tattoo 

Unfortunately I am still in the process of booking a tattoo appointment! It took me a while to decide what I wanted, and I left it too late to book it for my birthday. *sob*

2. Get another piercing

  I couldn't decide on a piercing, but I have chosen a nose piercing and hope to get this done in the next month.

3. Work for a healthier lifestyle

 I must say this every year as a resolution, and it never seems to happen. Having worked 6 days a week for the whole summer, it hasn't been the healthiest as I find myself snacking form boredom a LOT. Now that I've started university I'm joining a gym that offers a student package, so hopefully I shall be getting healthier over the next few months.

4. Get as much as I can out of my work experience in July 

I had an amazing time at my work experience at Fido PR this year, and learned so much. I definitely hit this target! Read my post about my time at Fido here.

5. Try and get more hours at work 

I now work 8 hours a week at Warehouse, instead of just Saturdays, which is great as it gets me a bit more money every month.

6. Save more money! 

Saving has always been a sore spot for me, but I've shifted most of my earnings into my savings account and am hoping I've got enough willpower to keep it there!

7. Post more on my blog 

As I said before, I have been working a lot over summer, and have just started uni so my posts have been a little sporadic. Once I get back into a proper routine I will be back to posting regularly.

8. Do something different with my hair! 

I got my hair trimmed a little a week or so ago, so it's not too noticeable, but I did get my hair dyed copper! The dyeing happened on the 24th, one day after the five months, but I'm still counting it.

9. Buy a decent camera 

I was waiting until I got paid for this, but as I'm not desiring a camera as much as I was five months ago, I'm leaving it a little longer.

10. Try and have a bit more patience with things. 

I have worked pretty hard at this, and am definitely less bothered about things than I used to be.

So the results aren't amazing, and I could have done a little better but I definitely feel there has a been a big change in certain aspects of my life, and right now I'm extremely happy with that. This post is a little different than my usual ones but I think it's nice to have a change now and again. 

Do you have any targets for the next few months?

Thanks for reading,

Amy x

Monday, 23 September 2013

Managing Your Online Presence

A couple of weeks ago I wrote another post for online student magazine The Student Pocket Guide (you can read the first one here), and it's just gone online so I thought I'd post it on here too as I think it could be quite helpful! 
Source: The Student Pocket Guide
When looking for work during university, managing your online presence is crucial. More often than not, companies will search for you on social media sites when considering your job application as 99.9% of us have online accounts. Whether that be Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, it’s important that you make yourself look as professional as possible. That doesn't mean that you have to stop using them completely or post things like “I love hard work” – it can be as simple as changing your settings…


1. On Facebook, you should change your privacy settings so that when searched for, you appear as only a profile picture with your name, unless the person is your friend. This means that any potential employers won’t be able to see those dodgy photos your mates have tagged you in. Unless of course one of those pictures is your profile picture – then it would be pointless.
2. If you can’t help but tweet about things potential employers probably wouldn’t want to read, then think about changing your privacy settings on here too. This means that your tweets can’t be read without someone requesting to follow you.
3. If you can manage your twitter feed without making it private and know what kind of job you want to get into, you can tweet companies within that sector asking for help and advice on how to get into it yourself. It not only shows you are conscientious and serious about working, but also that your social media isn’t just to chat about last night’s events. Twitter is also a great way to search for job vacancies. Try searching #jobs with your chosen field and location, for example, #media #york.
4. Blogging isn’t for everyone, but it is a brilliant way of getting yourself out there. You could write about anything and everything, and it’s great to put on your CV as either a hobby, or for some people, a career. A good idea would be to start a blog related to the subject of your degree or potential field of work you want to get into.
5. Consider creating a LinkedIn account. So many industry professionals have LinkedIn accounts, and having one yourself could help you out a lot. You can see what past work experience certain people have, so if you want to get into that industry too, it can give you an idea how to get there. Also, it’s like an online CV. You can include your work experience, where you went to college and what you achieved, and also the kind of things you’re good at. Use it to show off in a professional manner.
I hope these tips have helped you and if you know any good ones, feel free to comment them below! Thanks for reading,
Amy x

Saturday, 21 September 2013

University Series #6 - Choosing A Course At University

While a lot of people are in their first few weeks of university, (myself included!), college students will be starting the whole process. In my University Series I'm going to include some posts aimed at at college students or those getting back into higher education. Going to university can be a life changing decision so make sure you do as much research as possible and that you choose the right course for the right reasons. 


It's best to choose a course that interests you; doing something that bores you will eventually make you lose interest which could in turn harm your quality of work. Also, if you do something you enjoy, you're more likely to want to work your hardest and do your best! When picking a course, you need to ensure that you look at the entry requirements. Sometimes it may be that you need to secure yourself certain grades, or you need to submit an example piece of work. Make sure you don't apply for a course that requires something you don't have!


First of all, you need to think about which universities you would like to study at, and to do this you need to consider the following:
  • Do you want to move to another part of the country or stay at home? Each university will offer something different so you need to think where you would like to be.
  • If you choose to move to somewhere you don't know very well or have never been, be sure to research the location so you can find out what it can offer you.
  • For extra advice, speak to family, friends, students, the university itself, or you're welcome to email me if you'd like to speak to someone who isn't directly involved!

What is the best university? Of course there is no answer to this. Each university will offer something different; it depends what you want to study basically. Start by thinking about the following: What subject interests you the most? Do I need a specific qualification for what I want to do in the future? What am I particularly talented at? Is there a specific job I want for the future?

If you can't answer the above, just keep them in mind.  You don't want to go in blind and get overwhelmed by the number of courses available! Unistats is a great website to check out, it helps you to gather more information about courses and different universities. 

From experience, I would pick out a range of courses that interest you, and then list the pros and cons of each. If you weigh up each of your options of each course, it will help you to see the ones that stick out for you! Do the same for the universities. The course may sound great but does the university have the right facilities for you? Does it have enough student support to help you through the course? 

Open days are extremely important to attend. If you are interested in a certain university, be sure to check out when it's open days are and have a good look around. Open days usually offer subject talks, tours of the campus and facilities and gives you the chance to talk to students and staff. Personally, going to a university open day completely changed my mind on a certain university; it really shows you how important they are. Whilst you're at the open day, have a look at the location too. This can also be a huge factor.

If you have any questions feel free to email me!

Thank you for reading,

Amy x

Friday, 20 September 2013

The Zara Mini City Bag

A couple of weeks ago I was browsing Zara online, and lusting after many things as usual, I spotted the Mini City Bag. After seeing how popular the full size City Bag was and knowing how hard it is to get your hands on it now, I bought the mini version right away!





When I first opened the box the bag was delivered in, I was slightly concerned about the size, thinking that it might be too small for me, as I usually carry a lot of things around with me. It has three compartments, one in the middle with a zip and then one on either side of that that don't fasten completely but do have a magnetic clasp in the middle. The middle compartment fits my purse, keys and some make up that I carry around with me. When I use a bigger bag I usually take an actual make up bag, but as this bag is on the smaller side I just take with me some powder, a powder brush, concealer and some mascara. In the outside compartments I slot in my umbrella, a drink, some tissues, my Tangle Teezer, some antibacterial hand gel and any other little bits I need when I'm out and about. Despite my initial concerns, as you can see, the bag does fit all the essential every day items inside.

The bag is extremely sturdy and looks like it is worth a lot more than the £29.99 price tag. I used it for the first time properly over the last two days on a trip to Chester for my birthday, and found that it made a nice change to carry around a smaller and lighter bag. The only major problem I encountered with it was that yesterday when it poured it down, obviously the things in the outside compartments did get a little wet. However, that is expected when bought. Also, with the outside compartments being open, I was a little worried that they may be easy to grab things out of, though I'm sure my 49p packet of tissues from Boots aren't on the top of every pickpockets list! 

For the price and the purpose I will be using the bag for, I'm extremely happy with my purchase. I've been after a smaller yet still stylish bag for some time now, and think this one is perfect, especially as it is this gorgeous burgundy colour! Do any of you own this bag? What do you think?


Thanks for reading,

Amy x

Monday, 16 September 2013

University Series #5 - Budgeting

Starting University can be pretty daunting but for the majority of people it is the best time of their lives. As long as you plan and arrange everything you need to do, you'll be fine, and this particular post is going to help you along the way. As well as everything you need to take with you (read my post on this here) you will need to sort things out like money, travel, accommodation etc.



At this point, the majority of students going to university will already be there, or will be starting in the next week or so, so it's likely you already have your student finance sorted out. If so, it would be useful to open a student bank account with a branch nearby to where you are living. Be sure to check out a range of student accounts as they all offer different benefits. You may also need to travel home from university at holidays such as Christmas and Easter, and if this involves a train, plane or coach, be sure to book in advance and you will save a good amount of money! 

Each month you should budget your money. Note down your income (how much money you receive from your student loan per month, and any money from a part time job, benefits or savings). You can then work out how much you plan to spend on rent, food, anything you may need for university (clothes, petrol etc). Deduct this amount from your income and you will see how much you have left to spend on whatever you like. If you find out you plan on spending more than you have (too much month at the end of the money!), you need to work out what to cut down on.

Here are some money saving tips on food, socialising and study expenses:

  • When cooking food, make more than you can eat and freeze it. This will keep in the the freezer and can be used for more meals later on.
  • Buy own brands from supermarkets and sign up for loyalty schemes.
  • Make a list of food you need and stick to it.
  • Look out for bargains on fresh food at the end of each day - they can't sell fresh bread for example a day after it was baked.
  • Look out for student discounts if out with friends in places like the cinema for example.
  • Find out when your favourite clubs have student nights for cheaper entry and cheaper drinks!
  • Only take a certain amount of money out so you aren't tempted to spend more than you can afford to.
  • When purchasing study material, find out what is essential so you don't waste money on materials you don't need.
  • Ask older students on the same course what books they needed.
  • Look on Ebay or buy them second hand so that they will be cheaper.
  • Borrow from the library if you don't need the whole book.
  • When doing laundry, try and do one big wash instead of several little ones throughout the week.
  • At your Freshers Fair companies may be handing out freebies or discounts, so try and get hold of as many as possible.
  • If you're living in halls, why not do one big shop with your flatmates? That way you can all put to some money as it would work out cheaper buying in bulk.
If you have any tips you want to share, please leave them in the comments below! I hope this post have helped you and thank you for reading,

Amy x

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Autumn & Winter Wishlist

Autumn and Winter are my two favourite months, and always have been. I've always preferred AW trends and spend April to August lusting after chunky knits, thick tights and bobbly hats. Now that September has finally arrived, I can't wait to get out there and splurge on a new wardrobe (even though I probably shouldn't...). Next week I'm celebrating my 19th birthday, and am heading down to Chester with the boyfriend. While we're there I'm going to check out Cheshire Oaks and hopefully snap up a few AW bargains so keep an eye out for a haul post. Here a few items that have caught my eye over the past week or so!




Printed Bomber Jacket - £19 / Tartan Scarf - £4 / Teal Bag - £10
(all Primark)










Tile Printed Shirt - £12 - Primark / Faux Fur Collar Coat - £95 - Warehouse /Jewel Necklace -Primark



I won't be able to afford them all, sob, but I can wish! 


Thanks for reading,

Amy x

Monday, 9 September 2013

University Series #4 Moving Away Checklist

Moving out and going to university is an exciting time, and with so much going on in your mind at once it would be easy to get confused. Planning and organisation are essential in such an important time. 



From thinking about all the clothes you want to take, to all the necessities for your kitchen, here is a cleverly devised checklist of all the important items you don't want to forget! Having worked in student accommodation for the past four summers, I have spoken to so many people about what they should bring with them to university and know what kind of things people forget, so I hope this helps you!

Paperwork
  • Your passport, drivers license and national insurance number
  • TV License if not provided
  • A CV and any references you have gained
  • Your bank details
  • Your doctors and dentist details along with your NHS number
  • A diary or calender could also be useful to make sure you don't forget any important events!
  • Grab a map of the local area and a guide to what's going on

Kitchen

If you're sharing a flat with a few others, it would be a good idea to discus what kitchen items you could each bring. It wouldn't be very useful if all 5 of you brought a toastie maker yet no one brought any pans to cook any food. Maybe just bring the essential items with you on your first day and then discuss which appliances each could bring in the following few days. Also, maybe you could all put some money together and buy anything else needed between you. The majority of the time, appliances will already be provided in the flats but this will be something you need to find out prior to moving in.
  • Corkskrew and bottle opener
  • Mugs and glasses
  • Cutlery
  • Plates and bowls
  • Frying pans and saucepans
  • Tin opener
  • Scissors
  • Chopping board
  • Basic cupboard ingredients - coffee, tea, sugar, salt, pepper etc
  • Cooking utensils - wooden spoon, spatula, masher
  • Plastic boxes suitable for freezing - place any left over food (spag bol for example) in and freeze for another days meal!
  • Plastic bowl that is suitable for microwaving - perfect for heating soups and beans!
  • Sandwich bags
  • Tea towels
  • Tin foil and cling film
  • Oven gloves
  • Tray to carry food on if eating in bedroom
  • Washing up liquid, dishcloth and scrubbing brush (for when the washing up actually DOES get done)

Bathroom
  • Bath mat 
  • Bath and hand towels (maybe a flannel too)
  • A basket to keep all your shower things in (handy if not in an en suite bedroom!)
  • Toilet paper
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste and mouthwash
  • Shower accessories - soaps, bodywash, shampoo, conditioner
  • Hair gels, hairspray
  • Deodorant
  • Nail scissors/clippers
  • Hairbrush
  • Razors and shaving gel/foam

Electrical Items
  • Alarm clock
  • Mini fridge - for those morning afters when you can't be bothered to walk to the kitchen!
  • Calculator
  • Laptop and charger
  • Phone charger
  • Memory stick - essential for storing important work!
  • Printer - though you should be able to use the ones in your university
  • Network cable
  • Bedside lamp
  • TV and DVD player
  • Camera - document your time at university so you can relive the memories later on
  • Headphones
  • Extension lead
  • Batteries

Studying Essentials
  • Desk lamp
  • Notice board/white board - to make a note of important events
  • Dictionary and thesaurus
  • A pad of lined paper
  • Plain A4 paper for printing
  • Folders to keep your work in
  • Stationary - Pens, pencils, rubbers, highlighters, tippex, ruler, stapler, hole punch
  • Sellotape
  • White Tac - this won't stain the walls like Blu Tac would
  • Post it notes

Housekeeping
  • Laundry bag - Keep's your clothes off the floor and makes it easy to take it to the laundry room....if your parents don't do your washing!
  • Clothes horse to dry your clothes in your room
  • Dustpan and brush
  • Cleaning products for your flat and your clothes
  • Dusters
  • Small vacuum 

Bedroom
  • Sheets
  • Duvet and duvet covers
  • Pillows and pillow cases
  • Matress cover
  • Hot water bottle
  • Sleeping bag (if your mates stay over)

Miscellaneous
  • Alcohol
  • Extra storage
  • Suitcase
  • Spare lightbulb
  • Torch
  • Any loose change
  • Fan
  • Clock
Don't forget all your clothing any home comforts to make your room feel a little more homey!

I really do hope this list has helped, sometimes it's good to check your list against someone else's to make sure you have absolutely everything. Comment below if you think of anything that should be added.

Are any of you moving away this September, or staying at home like me?


Thanks for reading,

Amy x

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Moroccan Oil Hair Treatment

I've been dying my hair since I was around 14, and it's been a lot of different colours. The one that did the most damage would be black. I dyed my hair black a lot over a period of two years which resulted in totally ruined hair. Thankfully, over the past two or three years it has drastically improved, after multiple cuts and not using much heat on it. However, it can still sometimes appear a little lifeless and damaged so I'm always on the look out for hair treatments that work.




Most of you will have heard of Moroccan Oil, an extremely popular hair care brand that after starting in the hair industry alone, is now available to everyone and has gone from strength to strength ever since. Their products are antioxidant infused and nutrient rich, which provide dramatic results in the improvement of your hair.

I have used the Moroccan Oil Hair Treatment around 10 times up to now; after washing I towel dry my hair and run the treatment through the mid-lengths and ends of my hair as this is where needs the most attention. I try and avoid the roots, as my hair seems to appear greasy if I apply anything to them. As oil and water don't really mix, using the hair treatment has drastically reduced the drying time of my hair which my achey arms are forever grateful for. I have even noticed a change in my hair - the ends feel and look stronger and healthier.

Although I still have a long way to go and a few inches to be taken off before my hair is back to good health, this treatment has definitely hurried the process along.  Moroccan Oil is available from Amazing Hair and I'd definitely recommend checking it out! I was even lucky enough to receive another bottle from a recent event, but I'll definitely be purchasing another bottle when they run out.

Have you tried Moroccan Oil treatments? What do you think?

Thanks for reading,

Amy x

Monday, 2 September 2013

Weleda Skincare

I recently started using products from Weleda*, and as you may have read, I do suffer from quite dry, dehydrated and sometimes sensitive skin, so changing skincare is a big deal for me. After reading up about Weleda, I felt quite confident about using their products. They began back in 1921, proving that they excel in their field, and have been popular for nearly 100 years. With their motto being "In harmony with nature and the human being", it shows that Weleda care about the world we live in and the people that live in it.



The first product is Skin Food, and when I first used it, I immediately noticed how thick the cream was, and knew it would be extremely nourishing for my skin. Skin Food's primary use is to help nourish dry and dehydrated skin, and can be used as a protective cream. As it is made with organic sunflower oil and extracts of wild pansty, chamomile, calendula and rosemary, it smells really natural and fresh which I thought was lovely. Even though the cream is made for use on hands, feet and elbows, I used it on dry patches on my face which unfortunately do appear quite often! I found that Weleda's Skin Food definitely helped to smooth things out and bring some moisture back to my skin. I still use my everyday moisturiser as my main one, but when I get any rough patches I immediately go to Weleda Skin Food. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who suffers from dry or dehydrated skin. You can tell by the shape of the tube that I've been using and loving it!


The next product is the Wild Rose Smoothing Day Cream. The formula of this one is slightly different to Skin Food, as it is a little more runny. Although, it is absorbed into the skin right away. As you can probably tell by the name, the cream smells like roses. Sometimes I think this scent can be quite overpowering, especially in face products, but it wasn't the case at all with the Smoothing Day Cream. I haven't used this as much as Skin Food, as I preferred Skin Food by a mile as it is more nourishing, but it's great when you just want to apply a light moisturiser.


The last product is the Calendula Lotion. This lotion is primarily for use on babies and very delicate skin, but it also states that it can be used on sensitive skin. The Calendula Lotion is the most runny out of the three, and again smells very natural. When applied to the skin it immediately feels like it's doing wonderful things, and not as though it is just sitting on your skin. 



I have to say that my favourite out of the three is Skin Food, as it has been a saviour for my temperamental skin, but the other two are lovely products as well that I'll definitely be using. Weleda is available from Feel Unique

Have you tried anything from Weleda? What do you think?

Thanks for reading,

Amy x



*items were sent for review
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