What's in my bag | Autumn/winter edition

Well hello to you my reader chums! With longer nights and even colder weather, autumn is slowly on its way out with the excitement of winter not too far ahead. In the cooler months, I find you need a few more self care products on hand and always fill up my bag with the essentials. 

Autumn inspired whats in my bag

The satchel bag

When I was in Venice, my boyfriend kindly treated me to the most gorgeous satchel bag. I've always had a thing for satchels, they can smarten up any look and are ever such a classic piece. This one in particular I fell in love with because of all the colours; there's a blend of light to dark brown, black, burgundy and a warm mustard colour under each pocket, which stood out amongst the rest of bags on sale.

Autumn inspired whats in my bag

Here's what's in my bag for autumn and winter time..

Hand cream

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned in previous posts, how when the cooler weather hits, my hands suffer with dryness. In autumn time, I like to carry around a hand cream so if they feel really dry or as if the dryness will come, I'll apply a bit and fix the problem. The product I love to use at the minute is Soap and Glory's 'Hand Food' because it has the most delicious scent and a thick consistency, aiding extra dry hands.

Tissues

Winter may bring the Christmas excitement and endless cosy nights, however it's also cold season, so I like to carry a pack of tissues, whether its for me or a friend. If you head to your local supermarket you can by a massive pack of travel-size tissues for cheap to carry on the go and help conquer all those winter colds.

Lip balm

Similar to my hands, my lips get insanely dry when the cooler weather hits. I like to try various of lip balms out in this season to see which works best. The one I'm using at the minute is a classic chapstick balm and love how soothing it is. If you have any recommendations, please leave them below in the comment section.

Berry lipsticks

One thing I love about autumn/winter is the makeup looks. A coppery eye and darker lip is my staple makeup to rock when the weather is colder. You never know what sort of occasion a day can bring and I always make sure to have a lipstick with me no matter what. In these months, berry lipsticks tend to feature in my handbag. I like to carry around a subtle option like Nyx's liquid lipstick in 'Rome' and a vampier option, Charlotte Tilbury's 'Glastonberry' if I wanted to rock the darker look.

Hand gel

I am a bit of a clean freak and love to carry round sanitizer to give my hands a good wash before eating when on the go. With flu's and colds everywhere in winter, I find it's the best time to have a bottle on hand.

Gum

Mints and gums are an everyday handbag essential. You never know when you're going to want to freshen your breath or a friend may ask for a piece or gum, so it's always best to be prepared. 

Spiral hair ties

Spiral hair ties are one of the most useful things I've invested in. They make tying up hair, a quick and easy task without the stress of messing up your hair when you take out the hair tie. In winter, they're one of those convenient items every girl needs; if the wind is going crazy, you can just put your hair up in a bun with no hassle. 

Purse

An essential for everyday is my little purse. What I love most is its size; the purse is big enough to fit all my money essentials but not too large that it can't fit in this satchel.

I hope you enjoyed this what's in my bag style post. What are your autumn/winter essentials?

Thank you for reading <3

5 days | A Rome and Venice guide

Well hello to you my reader chums! I've just got back from an incredible little Italian adventure, a few days in both Rome and Venice. I decided to take my boyfriend there for his 21st birthday and we had been counting down the days till the trip finally came along. We crammed so many exciting sights, dinners and memorable moments in the 5 days that I can't wait to share it with you. With this guide, I want to not only document the time we had there but share my advice on what to see and do as well as my best tips for visiting Rome/Venice for the first time.

Here's my 5 day guide to Rome and Venice..

Ancient ruins, famous churches and a hearty food scene, the bustling city of Rome always leaves you wanting more. There's top sights, quaint streets and a thousand gelato shops you wouldn't want to miss.

Day 1 
Spanish Steps Rome Italy

We arrived in Rome around mid-morning, got ready and set off to explore. The guest house we were staying in was located right in the centre, convenient to reach all the desired sights. We stopped off at the Spanish Steps, took a look around Piazza Di Spagna and hopped on the metro down to the Vatican City. 

Vatican museums and Sistine Chapel

Vatican museums

This is the second time I've visited the Vatican museums and couldn't recommend them enough. With the jaw-dropping ceiling art, sculptures and bucket-fulls of history, there's plenty to discover. My highlight has to be the Sistine Chapel. Even on the second time I walked in there, it still blew my mind. The colourful, detailed paintings that coat every wall and ceiling do not seem real. It's crazy to think about how much time and talent went into creating each piece of art.

Vatican museums


St Peter's Basilica and Square

St Peters Basilica

Once we'd seen all the museums and Sistine chapel, we headed down to St Peters Square, only a short walk away. St Peter's Square and Basilica never fail to amaze me! It's absolutely massive and worth a little walk around. If you're lucky to arrive on a day when St Peter's Basilica doesn't have a 3 hour queue, make sure to go in! This time, we weren't so fortunate, however the last time in Rome it had to be one of my favourite things I saw. The interior is breathtaking and like all churches, I felt so at ease as soon as I stepped inside.

St Peters Basilica

Trevi fountain

After exploring the Vatican, we went back to the hotel and got ready for dinner. We decided to head around the Trevi Fountain area as my favourite restaurant is nearby called al Picchio. If you're new to Rome, I'd highly recommend it! The traditional little Italian opened in the 1930s and offers the most hearty Italian dishes. 

Trevi fountain at night

The Trevi Fountain is always beautiful but at night it stands out that little bit more. With twinkling lights and the calming water, it's the perfect time make your fountain wish.

Trevi fountain at night

Day 2 

Colosseum

Colosseum

You can't see the ancient city of Rome without a visit to the Colosseum. The structure amazes me how it still stands today, where were able to admire the beauty and explore the historical significance it holds.

Colosseum
 Colosseum

Colosseum

Colosseum

Roman Forum

The Roman Forum is located right next to the Colosseum and much bigger than I ever expected. It's a rectangular forum surrounded by ancient government buildings and their ruins. This was my first time at the forum and I was impressed at not only how big it was but how that much history is right at our feet.

Roman Forum

Altar of the Fatherland

In the centre of Piazza Venezia stands the Altar of the Fatherland, a magnificent white building built in honour of unified Italy's first king. You're able to walk around it and if you like, pay a small fee to use the lift that goes right to the top and overlook the square below. Piazza Venezia is the central hub of Rome, packed with restaurants, shops and located round the corner from the Colosseum.

Altar of the Fatherland Rome

Trevi Fountain

We kept returning to the Trevi Fountain because its timeless beauty never gets old. As we saw it the night before, I wanted to visit in the daytime, to let us both experience the bustling atmosphere and see the fountain in all its glory.

Trevi fountain

Piazza Navona

Close by to the Pantheon, Piazza Navona has to be one of my favourite hidden gems in Rome. With the glistening fountains, busy restaurants and traditional street painters, it's a charming location every Rome newbie needs to see and stay for dinner.

Piazza Navona Rome

Day 3 

We had the morning in Rome before our train departed for Venice at 3.40pm. These hours were spent visiting our favourite areas: Piazza Navona, the Trevi Fountain and Colosseum surroundings, to soak up that last bit of Roman charm. The train journey lasted for about 5 and a half hours, arriving in Venice around the 10pm mark. We managed to find our Air bnb and got some rest before the Venice ventures began the next day.

Day 4

Endless calm canals and picturesque side streets at every turn, Venice is a city that has my heart. The whole place had so much beauty, it's hard to even put into words. Colourful, rustic buildings graced the canal sides whilst traditional gondolas lined up waiting for their next visitors to depart, it all felt like a wild, wild daydream.

Grand canal venice

St Marks Basilica and Square

Once we managed to get our heads around the map, our first stop was the famous St Marks Square. The square was incredible; with St Marks Basilica at the top and the surrounding characteristic buildings, it's a mesmerising location. 

St Marks Basilica Venice

After a little walk around, we made our way inside the basilica. Entrance is free to the main basilica but the museum inside requires a small fee.  I was amazed by the high ceilings and intricate beauty inside the church, I couldn't help but stare. The museum area showcased lots of different artwork pieces and described the history of them as you walked round. One of the highlights was walking outside on the balcony area and admiring the sensational St Marks Square. I'd highly recommend paying the small fee, just to witness that beautiful view and getting a candid photo.

St Marks Square

Gondola rides


A gondola ride was on the top of my must do list when in Venice. Even though it's a pricey activity, the experience made it all worth while. Floating along the grand canal waters under the famous Rialto bridge with my boyfriend by my side, it was a dream come true. The gondola ride took us through the main canal and down a few quaint side canals to get the full Venetian experience.

Gondola rides

Rialto Bridge

Another must see sight is the famous Rialto Bridge. As we went in October, it wasn't as packed as it would have been during high season, however it was still pretty busy. The bridge is set in a gorgeous location, with shops, canal restaurants and market stalls only a small distance away. Built over the Grand Canal, the views were insane and it certainly adds a bit of uniqueness to the typical Venetian bridges.

Rialto bridge venice


Canal exploring

The best way to see Venice is getting lost, walking aimlessly around the never ending canals and side streets, to uncover the small hidden gems. We came across so many beautiful little spots that we wouldn't of seen if we stuck to the map. Every area of Venice makes a picture-perfect opportunity!

Venice canals

Venice canals

Venice canals

Venice Canals

Venice Canals

Venice Canals

Day 5 

The last day was all about soaking up the final parts of Venice, exploring more streets, market stalls and eating the best Italian food. 

Grand Canal Cruise

Grand canal cruise

We decided to book a Grand Canal Cruise on our last day to get a look at the entire canal on water. The boat we had was very small, similar to their taxi size boats and seating under 10 of us, making it a rather private experience. I loved every minute of this as you were able to sail by, taking in all the views as the tour guide taught us a lot about the history of Venice.

Grand canal cruise

Tips and tricks

Rome
  • If you'd like to visit the Colosseum and Roman Forum, purchase your tickets when you arrive. There's a little ticket selling booth by the Roman Forum where if you're from the EU and under 25, you'll get tickets for 8 euro.
  • Don't fall for tour guides trying to sell you skip the line for St Peters Basilica. The church has free entrance and there isn't anyway to tackle the queues apart from lining up.
  • You can walk everywhere - If you stay in the centre, everything is accessible by foot and saves you money on transport costs.
  • Book airport shuttles in advance, if not you'll fall for the high price taxis which have a set rate of 60 euro.
Venice
  • Venice is pricey - avoid eating in the major tourist spots to save on money.
  • Google maps do not work in Venice - to get around, your best bet is getting a physical map and finding your way using that.
  • The best mode of transport is by foot, otherwise there's only water taxis which can be on the expensive side if you use them over and over again.
  • There's only one area of Venice where cars are accessible, Piazzale Roma. This is the best place to get to and from the airport. 

Roma e Venezia, che ti amo.

We both had the most incredible Italian adventure exploring these two magnificent cities. There were so many highlights and memories created with my favourite ever person. Visiting the famous sights, making a wish at the Trevi Fountain, gondola rides, walking the streets of Venice and eating our weight in the best Italian food, I wish I could do it all over again. Here's a little shout out to the best boyfriend ever, for supporting me in all I do and loving every part of me. Happy Birthday bub, I hope you enjoyed your present! Till our next adventure...

I hope you enjoyed this Rome and Venice guide. Have you visited either city?

Thank you for reading <3



September favourites

Well hello to you my reader chums! I say this about every month but I'm pretty sure September swept by way too quickly with 2017 going along at a very fast pace. The month of September had a few exciting memories and with that, I've put together my favourite things.

Here are my September favourites...

September favourites


Nyx's matte liquid lipstick in 'Rome'

I have an obsession with all things lipstick and will be that girl to buy 25 of the same shade just to try out different formulations. A range of lipsticks I adore are Nyx's matte liquid lipsticks and I've raved about them on various posts. The past month, I've been reaching for the shade 'Rome' a lot. When it comes to nude lipsticks, I'm a sucker for a dusky pink, whether its dark or light, it has my name on. 'Rome' is the ideal autumnal dusky pink, with that slight darkness to it that makes it look more than a nude lipstick. It applies with ease, has a creamy texture and sits for hours on the lips. Nyx's liquid lipstick in 'Rome' is definitely going to be a staple for the rest of autumn.

Slogan jumpers

Cooler weather means the jumpers come back out. Like lipsticks, jumpers are one of my biggest obsessions that when autumn hits I can't wait to dig into my collection. The weather hasn't been crazily cold or anything like that, however there has been a slight chill in the air and as I work in a causal office, throwing on a jumper with jeans is easy. What I've been reaching for are my slogan jumpers, from thicker ones with a small sentences to a big print in the middle on a thinner jumper. They're so easy to pair and look casual yet super cute. H&M, Primark and Pull&Bear do some of the best ones.

September favourites


Marc Jacobs 'Daisy' Roll on perfume

Marc Jacob's Daisy perfume is my all time favourite scent. I went away to Amsterdam in September and as I'm going abroad again this month, I decided to invest in a rollerball perfume. It was the best decision I've made! I can take my favourite perfume with me wherever I go; whether that's abroad, on a night out or long day in London, I can quickly freshen up on the go. Marc Jacobs 'Daisy' has the freshest floral scent with a slight muskiness and I absolutely love it.

Anne Frank's Diary

Before I visited Amsterdam, I wanted to read Anne Frank's Diary as visiting her house was top on my list. I was about to pick a copy up on Amazon but ended up finding one at a boot fair for 50p and you really can't go wrong with that. The diary was incredibly eye-opening and bittersweet, I was amazed reading every single word. Anne was such a talented young writer and I feel blessed to have read her work. I love how the diary was a mixture of every girl's teenage thoughts and an insight into what they were going through in hiding. Reading it, really put a perspective on everything and it was so interesting to learn even more about the subject. Anne wrote how she really wanted to be a writer one day and make a name of herself, well that's exactly what she did. If you haven't already, add it to your reading list, it'll make you feel every single emotion and I couldn't recommend it enough.

Amsterdam

Towards the end of September, I visited Amsterdam for a few days with my boyfriend. I've wanted to see this city for a while now so finally getting to go meant so much to me. Amsterdam didn't disappoint; the never ending canals, rows of bicycles and characteristic buildings had a beautiful charm about it. I loved every minute, walking around to take in the view, visiting its museums and taking a canal boat tour, it was dream-worthy. There were so many highlights and I'd love to back to see it all over again. If you're planning a trip there, check out my 48 hour guide to Amsterdam for my best tips.

Amsterdam 48 hour guide


I hope you enjoyed my September favourites. Which products have you been loving?

Thank you for reading <3

Autumn inspired OOTD and makeup

Well hello to you my reader chums! The leaves have fallen, the chiller weather has set in and my favourite clothes are out, autumn is officially here. I say this all the time, but one of my favourite things about autumn is the fashion and makeup. Darker lips, over-sized jackets and ankle boots are back; every item that describes autumn fashion to me.

Here's my take on an autumn inspired OOTD and makeup look...

Autumn inspired ootd and makeup
Autumn outfit

Denim jacket - Primark
Stripy top - Pull & Bear
Black jeans - Topshop's Joni jeans
Ankle boots - New Look

Autumn inspired ootd and makeup

I've seen oversized denim jackets everywhere this season and had been wanting to get my hands on one for a while. Topshop are known for selling these pieces, however instead of the £60 price tag, I found a dupe in Primark for only £20. The difference between them is minimal; stylish, comfy and a piece that will get the most wear this autumn. I paired it with a stripy tee, high-waisted black jeans and Chelsea boots, for a casual yet quirky vibe.

Autumn inspired ootd and makeup

The jacket is the featured piece of this outfit, which you can wear paired with jeans, skirts or even a dress for that over-size look. Its one of those items that are so versatile, you're able to look super casual or incredibly stylish; a trendy jacket every girl needs this autumn. I'm in love with it an cannot wait to style it with more outfits.

Autumn inspired ootd and makeup

Autumn makeup

Typically in autumn, I take out my copper shadows and berry lipstick, however I wanted to do something a little bit different with this look. For the eyes, I focused on a champagne base, darkened the outer corners with a blend of browns/reds then ran a burnt orange, red shade under the eyes for a bit of definition. The base is my general everyday makeup with bronzed cheeks and a light highlight. I chose to go for a red lip as it added that pop of colour and complimented the stripes well.

Base
Revlon's 'colour stay' foundation, Rimmel's 'wake me up' concealer, Rimmel's 'stay matte' powder, Benefit's 'Hoola' bronzer and Sleek's 'Cleopatra highlighting palette'.

Brows and eyes
Sleek's eye brow palette in 'light'. Too Faced Sweet Peach palette; shades used, 'Peached 'n cream', 'Nectar', ' Luscious', 'Puree', 'Summer Yum' and 'Charmed, I'm sure'.

Lips
Nars' velvet matte lip pencil in 'Cruella'.

I hope you enjoyed this autumn inspired OOTD and makeup post. What's your go to autumn look?

Thank you for reading <3


Autumn evening routine

Well hello to you my reader chums! Autumn is finally here; the darker nights, crispy leaves, pumpkin spice lattes and bath season are making their appearance once more. I love the cosiness of this season, how you can spend more time inside, taking that time for you or enjoying movie nights with loved ones; the heart-warming woodland walks and Christmas excitement to come.

For today's post, I wanted to share my autumn night time routine, how after a day at work, I like to unwind and pamper myself.

Here's my autumn evening routine...

Autumn evening routine

Bath time

Whether you're a massive Lush cosmetics fan or adore bubbles, autumn is the time to appreciate a bath. As the weather is getting that little bit chillier, I find myself wanting to soak up in the bath then get into some snuggly pyjamas and fluffy socks. Lush have released their Halloween and Christmas range recently that are packed with the best spicy scents! Cinnamon to ginger, it's all there. The spicy pumpkin has to be my favourite this time of year; its mixture of sparkles, the best bubbles and musky scent scream autumn to me.

Makeup removal

As the evenings get darker quicker, you almost want to get ready for bed that little bit earlier and for me that means wiping away my makeup. I'll usually take majority of the makeup off with Garnier's micellar water and continue with the matching face wash, to cleanse my skin, ensuring there's no residue left over.

Autumn evening routine

Face mask

Face masks are a necessity for a bit of pampering especially during the autumn season. I usually use a face mask once a week, typically on a Sunday night, to prepare for the week ahead. My favourite picks are Lush's speciality's 'Cupcake' and 'Brazened honey, Sephora's sheet masks and Garnier's. At this time of year I like to choose a mask that will nourish and repair the skin as not only does my skin get drier in autumn, but I find it can also be more problematic.

Moisturising

After makeup removal or a facemask, I always ensure to moisturise my skin. My top choices for face moisturiser are Simple's 'kind to skin' moisturiser or Garnier's 'rose extract' moisturiser. For all over body moisturiser, I have a wide variety of favourites, from Soap and Glory's 'sugar crush' to Zoella Beauty's 'ginger cream'. As my skin gets a lot drier in the autumn, moisturising is key after a shower/bath and before bed time, each evening.

Reading

I'm an avid book reader and always have been. I find the best way to unwind and fall asleep with ease is to read a book before bed. This allows for my eyes to naturally drop, whether that's mid paragraph or not, it helps my sleep quality be that extra bit better and dream sweetly of the story I've been reading. A comfy mattress, my favourite assortment of pillows and a snuggly blanket help create the perfect relaxing environment to read in bed.

I hope you enjoyed this post about my autumn evening routine. What's one thing you do before bed time in the autumn?

Thank you for reading <3