My Perfume Collection

My perfume collection almost grew by accident, honestly!  I gradually kept adding to it over the years and then I wasn't able to get through them all and so now I have about 25 bottles.  Also, I had quite an obsession with the Paris Hilton perfumes and went through a stage of buying them all (don't knock them till you've tried them!) so there's that.

My Collection

Paris Hilton - Heiress
Kate Moss - Vintage
Christina Aguilera - Christina Aguilera
Paris Hilton - Can Can
Ted Baker - W
Paris Hilton - Siren
Christina Aguilera - Inspire
Paris Hilton - Fairy Dust
Kate Moss - Kate
Paris Hilton - Sheer
DKNY - Woman
Vera Wang - Rock Princess
Benefit - Maybe Baby
Vera Wang - Princess
Paris Hilton - Tease
Valentino - Rock n Rose
Marc Jacobs - Daisy
Chloe - Chloe
Kate Moss - Velvet Hour
Kate Moss - Vintage Muse
DKNY - Apple
Marc Jacobs - Dot

Phew!  When you write them all down like that you don't realise how many you have.  I think some of them are actually empty but they just have the prettiest bottles.  And also, I didn't realise what a fan I was of the celebrity perfumes!

My Favourites

Paris Hilton - Heiress (here)
Christina Aguilera - Inspire (here)
Benefit - Maybe Baby (here)
Paris Hilton - Tease (here)
DKNY - Apple (here)
Marc Jacobs - Dot (here)

Those are my top picks.  I love anything fruity and sweet!  Next on my list is Chance by Chanel although I've been waiting for a guy to buy that for me haha.  There's just something romantic about someone buying you Chanel isn't there?!

What's your favourite perfume?

Lauren xx

5 Workout Staples Every Woman Should Own

It feels like it's been a while since I wrote a fitness post.  Being healthy and keeping fit are so important to me and I workout most days.  You can see all the types of exercises I do in this post.  However, as I'm such an avid gym going it's also important that I invest in the right equipment in order for me to reach my maximum potential when working out.




Headphones

Like most people, I simply cannot workout without music.  I generally do classes which provide it but if I'm going for a run I have to have my headphones with me.  If I don't I literally cannot do it or I do but then I feel like I'm not pushing myself as much.  I have these ones from Sony but I'm lusting over the Beats ones to go with my Beats Pill.

Sports Bra

If you're going to be doing a lot of running and cardio then it's important to invest in a good sports bra, an ordinary bra just won't do it.  Working out without the correct bra can be painful so a sports bra will stop them from bouncing around and getting in your way!  I just buy mine in Primark and they're fine for me but if you're of a larger bust you might want to invest in something like these from Shock Absorber.

Motivational Music

I guess this kind of goes in with headphones but if you workout at home then even better, you can blast that music as loud as you want (but maybe consider the neighbours ;))  Best of all, get some really motivational music like this album from Ministry of Sound which has a huge load of tracks to really push you and get your blood pumping!

Trainers

Like a good sports bra, a good pair of trainers are also worth investing in.  You can go to places like Nike where they will fit you properly to make sure you have the right size but also the right trainer for your workout needs.  Running, cardio and biking will require different types of trainers so make sure you get the ones most suited for your training.

Water

You must keep yourself hydrated whilst working out.  You will lose a lot of sweat and this needs to be replaced else you will feel weak and could pass out.  You need to make sure you're drinking lots before, during and after your workout to replenish your body.  Have a look at these cute water bottles from Sweaty Betty that you can take along to the gym with you.

What are your workout staples?

Lauren xx

The Latest Trends

As I said in my recent Autumn Makeup Menu post here, fall time (albeit it's pretty much winter in London now) is a blogger's favourite time of the year because of all the beautiful colours that are out there.  I've rounded up what's hot for this season; colour, textures et all...

Burgundy and Plum

This is a kind of "florals in Spring?  Groundbreaking!" moment but I think burgundy has to be my all time favourite colour to wear so I'm happy enough to say goodbye to the sun if it means I get to wear my favourite colour for the next 6 months.  Plum is also a great colour, not just in clothes but also on the lips!

    
Left - Topshop £100
Right - ASOS £30
Suede

Still digging the suede this year.  I recently bought a gorgeous pink skirt from Forever21 that can be worn in summer or winter and I really want to get one in tan to wear with black tights and long boots.

Left - Nordstom $44
Right - Missguided £40

Fringe

This boho, hippie trend is still very much alive whether it's on a skirt or a bag.  I have a black fringe vest which is perfect to throw over a plain t-shirt and give it a bit of edge. I'm also after a black suede fringe jacket as I'm so bored of wearing my leather one all the damn time!  Also, suede AND fringe, how on trend would I be?!

Left - Forever21 £28
Right - HM £20

Dungarees

I'm still loving overalls.  I bought a short pair for the summer but now winter is drawing closer I decided to invest in a long pair too.  I have blue denim in the short ones and went for black in the long which also have ripped knees which is another trend still going.

Left - Zara £40
Right - New Look - £27

What are you favourite trends right now?

Lauren xx

Mademoiselle Prive at Saatchi Gallery




Last weekend I attended the Chanel and Lagerfeld exhibition at London's Saatchi Gallery. This was the same venue that I attended London Fashion Weekend (which you can read about here).




What I love about this venue is that most of their exhibitions are free.  However, the only problem with that is then the world and his wife decide they want to go and you end up queuing outside for 90 minutes in the cold just to see it.




However, we decided to brave the cold and queue because I was really desperate to see the exhibition and knew it was only on until the end of the month.  Chanel is probably my all time favourite designer so I didn't want to miss my chance.




Luckily it was worth the wait and inside we were able to see some beautiful pieces of work from Mademoiselle Chanel.  Everything just glittered and sparkled and I think that's maybe what I love about her work.




The exhibition was set out well rather than being your average walk round and look at displays.  They had a little screening room which played a short film directed and starred in by Karl Lagerfeld.  They also had a room with lots of iconic Chanel fabric hanging from the ceiling that you could quite easily get lost in.




They then had a rather unusual sort of 'chill out' room with seating and walls made from leaves.  There were 3 different floors to look around so lots to see.  They also had workshops running, however, we didn't have much time for that after queuing for so long.




If you get a chance to see the exhibition I would definitely go, however, if you can get there during the week it may be less busy!




Lauren xx




The Best of Budget Homeware

Well, look at me getting all old and serious taking about homeware.  A couple of years ago I never would have been interested in buying new homeware but now it kinda excites me. I bought my own flat about 4 years ago now (advice on buying your own home here) and recently decided it was time to spruce the place up a bit and get some new homeware pieces.

Currently my flat has a black and white theme with my bedroom being complete white. However, I'm now liking the idea of adding a bit of grey in and some copper so here are some pieces I have my eye on.

1. Next - £135 (here)
2.  Zara - £26 (here)
3.  H&M - £6.50 (here)
4.  Ikea - £165 (here)


1.  Next - from £22 (here)
2.  Zara - £30 (here)
3.  H&M - £8 (here)
4.  Ikea - £45 (here)

1.  Next - £385 for 2 (here)
2.  Zara - from £8 (here)
3.  H&M - £3 (here)
4.  Ikea - £5 for 2 (here)

These are on my wishlist so far.  I can't believe the bargains in H&M, they're having a sale at the moment.  I also hear that New Look are coming out with a homeware line which looks interesting.

What's your favourite piece?

Lauren xx

LBD

For the longest time I was always all about the colour.  The brighter my outfit the better. It don't know whether it was a way of expressing myself or my love for bold outfits but I always went for colour over neutrals.

Recently, however, I've noticed my style changing a lot.  The last year or so I've been wearing a lot more black and classic staple pieces from my wardrobe and doing away with all my larey dresses.  I still love colour but more a pop of colour than the whole shabang.

I honestly only ever had one Little Black Dress in my entire wardrobe until about a year ago so here is my take on the classic LBD and some that I'm loving right now.

H&M (similar)

Missguided (similar)

ASOS (here)

Topshop (here)
Do you love to wear black or prefer colour?

Lauren xx

Outfits Of The Week

Sunglasses and top - Primark
Shorts - Kate Moss for Topshop (similar)

Hat - Peacocks (here)
Dress - H&M (similar)
Waistcoat - French Connection


Faux fur gilet - Debenhams (similar)
Dress - Missguided (similar)
Sandals - Primark


Shirt and skirt - Next


Sunglasses - Rayban (here)
T-shirt - eBay (here)
Leggings - H&M (similar)


Hat - Missguided (similar)
Jumper - Boohoo (here)
Shorts - New Look (here)
Which is your favourite?

Lauren xx

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My Autumn Makeup Menu

As much as I hate to admit it, we are well and truly in the middle of fall here in London. In fact, give it a few weeks and we'll have hit winter.  I know everyone keeps saying it and it's getting bloody annoying now but seriously where has this year gone?!

Like most bloggers, I think autumn is one of the best seasons for beauty and fashion.  You get a complete 180 spin from summer with darker shades and lots of layers.  So here's a round up of what I'll be sporting on my face this fall.




Foundation

After arriving at work this morning I suddenly realised that my foundation was a tad too dark now and I either need to slap on the fake tan or go for a shade lighter!  It's annoying, however, when you have to buy a few shades especially if they're expensive so I love this one from Covergirl as it's inexpensive and has so many shades to choose from.

Concealer

I feel like I'm tired more as it gets colder and my skin definitely looks duller so I try to add a heavier concealer to correct this.  Mac Pro Longwear has always been a favourite of mine.




Bronzer

As for my bronzer I prefer to go a little lighter in the fall so go for something like Hoola by Benefit as it's a subtle shade but buildable.

Blush

I like burnt tones for fall so recently I've been reaching for Laura Geller's Mocha Latte which also acts as a bronzer and blush in one.




Lips

The best part about fall makeup for me is the lips!  And this isn't going to come as any surprise but I'm sure you can all agree we love a good plum or wine red right?  My favourite at the moment is Rebel by Mac with Night Moth lipliner.




What are you autumn makeup favourites?

Lauren xx

My Favourite London Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurants

Being a vegetarian I used to find it hard to eat out.  I found there was not a lot of variety back in the day for us veggies and that some restaurants were often confused what being a vegetarian was about.  I once ordered a pasta dish they served up with bacon.  When I asked whether I could have it without the bacon they were like "can't you just pick it out?"  Errr...

However, over the last 5 years I think we have come a long way and now pretty much everywhere offers a vegetarian or even vegan menu and if they don't they'll be more than happy to make you something.  Below I'm sharing with you my favourite vegetarian and vegan restaurants in London.  Enjoy!




Sat between the row of curry houses on Brick Lane which is well known for Indian Cuisine, this curry house is slightly different from the rest in that it caters for the vegetarian Londoners.  If you didn't know curry is Britian's most favoured dish and this restaurant lets you know why!


This one is great because it has a gluten free and vegan menu too.  It's a little bit more on the pricey side but is one for celebrity spotting!  It's also a good place to go if you're seeing a concert at the Hammersmith Apollo, Earl's Court or Alexandra Palace like I did.

Polpo - Soho

Polpo is one of my favourites because it's Italian and I LOVE Italian food.  Set in central London it's a great one to go to before hitting the bars and clubs.  I also love it because you can see your food being prepared and it's not too pricey either.

InSpiral Lounge - Camden

This cafe and bar in set in London cool and gothic area of Camden and inside you'll find true organic and fair trade foods which makes you feel good when eating!  I really like this place if I want somewhere a bit livey but can't be bothered to move onto a bar (although there are loads to choose from in Camden!) as they have a DJ playing Fridays and Saturdays.


This restaurant is strictly vegan and at first I thought they'd have nothing for me.  I love my veggies but sometimes I find vegan food a bit bland (sorry!) but this place proved me wrong.  It had a lot of choice and I ate everything on my plate which doesn't happen often.  Set in swanky Primrose Hill it's a little more pricey but it's worth it for the amazing food backed up bu their awards.



Do you know of any other vegetarian restaurants I can try?

Lauren xx

My Fashion Book Collection

I didn't even realise I had so many fashion related books.  It was only when I wrote this post (My Cookbook Collection) that I thought 'hey, I have enough fashion books here to write a post about!' cos that's how bloggers think isn't it?!





I've always been into fashion, even when I was very small and I think my mother was a big part of that as she always dresses so well and I looked up to her.  When I was about 10 my mother and I used to watch a programme called 'What Not To Wear' and I loved it.  So when Trinny and Susannah announced they were selling books on the series I obviously added them to my Christmas List.

Obviously these books are quite dated now but fashion has a way of coming back around so I'm not going to throw them out just yet!

Kate Moss Style

I've always idolised Kate Moss and growing up I wanted to be a model just like her.  Obviously that didn't happen cos now I'm living the not-so-glamorous life of a lawyer but she still remains a style icon of mine.  Her book looks back on her life in style and gives us her fashion history.  It goes on to show us her most iconic looks and the stories behind them.


This book is more a biography of Coco Chanel's amazing life.  She's such a classy, elegant woman and someone I really look up to as I love that smart but edgy look.  She really is a legend and has made such a mark in fashion history.  AND the book looks great on your shelf ;)


I recently attended a press event for the Audrey Hepburn exhibition in London a few months back which you can read more about here.  The book basically reflects on her life and how she became the legend she is today.


This is the latest addition to my fashion book shelf but ever since Millie came on our screens in Made in Chelsea I had the biggest girl crush on her.  I've talked about here in many of my posts (#FanGirl) and even met her once which you can see more of here and here.  Anyway, the book is actually a mixture of fitness, food, beauty and style tips which is a winner in my eyes because you're getting so much in just one book.  Millie also has a classy elegant style that I love so her book was an obvious choice for me.




The other fashion books I currently have my eyes on are 'How To Be A Parisian Wherever You Are' and 'The Woman I Wanted To Be'.  Do you have any recommendations to add to my list?

Lauren xx

Drugstore Haul

This weekend I decided to run into Superdrug to pick up a new mascara but you know how it is; go in for one thing, come out with 5..





This was on their discounted stand next to the till and normally I'm not a sucker for these things but it was just 70p!  And I am a sucker for fake tan so I couldn't resist the bargain.  I tried a little bit on the back of my hand and it gives a nice glow.  I may do an all over tan this weekend with it.


With the name Peach Club I was expecting it to be, well, peach.  However, it's more of an orangey red, a colour that I love and it has super staying power.  I think they're supposed to be matte although I only swatched it on the back of my hand.  I've heard good things about these though and hear they're coming out with more colours this month.





I can never resist picking up a Barry M nail paint.  They have so many gorgeous colours I feel like a kid in a sweet shop.  I originally wanted Dragon Fruit which I thought was a bright coral colour but when I saw it in the shop it looked more a bubblegum pink.  However, Turbo Charged was the colour I was looking for and I think it looks great on my nails!





Recently I've been having problems with my hair falling out.  I don't know why; maybe it's the change in season or maybe my diet isn't right.  Anyway, I decided to pick up this conditioner which is specifically for 'fragile hair with a tendency to fall' so basically my hair.  I really hope it helps, will report back!


This is the product I went in Superdrug for in the first place.  I've heard so many great things about this mascara and seen so many beauty gurus using it.  I haven't tried it yet but I'm very excited to.  I got the colour black and the brush looks very different to anything I've tried before so I have high hopes!





MUA is a great little makeup brand that I sometimes feel is underrated.  The products are super cheap with a lot of them being just a pound including this blush so I couldn't pass it by.  The colour is so cute, it's like a pale pink but has a really good pay off.  It reminds me of Throbb from Benefit.




Have you tried any of these products?

Lauren xx

Spiralizer Vegetable Slicer Review and Recipe

A few weeks ago I was very kindly sent a vegetable slicer from Spiralizer to review.  Spiralizer are an American company who are looking to branch out to the UK.  It's funny because I was actually thinking to myself that I'd really love a vegetable slicer instead of using my Julienne peeler all the time.

For the past two years I've been really trying to eat more plant based foods.  I've been a vegetarian for nearly 8 years (more on that here) but just found myself eating way too many carbs.  I love the idea of swapping carbs for vegetable alternatives and my favourite has to be courgetti.



When I first started making courgetti I used the Julienne peeler which is great because it only cost me £1 but after a while I wanted something quicker and easier so that's where Spiralizer helped me out. This vegetable slicer is so easy to use and makes meal time so much quicker.  I work quite long hours and once I've done a gym class it will be quite late by the time I get home.  With this vegetable slicer I can also meal prep at the weekends so hardly any work is required after work, great!

You can purchase the vegetable slicer from Amazon.  It comes with 3 different blades so you can choose which shape you want.  Below I'll show you how to do my courgetti recipe I'm calling Lauren's Wonky Pasta!

Lauren's Wonky Pasta

All you need is 3 ingredients:

1 Courgette/Zucchini
1 tablespoon of low fat cream cheese
4 crab/fish sticks



Put the courgette into the vegetable slicer to make it into spaghetti like pieces.  

Add the courgetti into a wok or frying pan with a little olive oil or Fry Light for 3 minutes.

Remove from the pan and tear up strips of the crab sticks adding them to the courgetti.  Then stir in the cream cheese.

DONE!  Literally takes 5 minutes and tastes soooooooo good.

Another way I like to eat courgetti is with tofu and pesto.  I've also really gotten into cauliflower rice.

Please leave me any links for other plant based alternative recipes to try!

Lauren xx

Inside My Toiletries Bag

I know summer is pretty much over now, well it is in the UK, Hello October!  But that doesn't mean you can't have a holiday.  In fact, my favourite time to get away is October/November for some winter sun so with that said here is my final installment of 'What's Inside My Bag' series unless I can think of any other type of bag I have!



Shampoo/Conditioner

Pretty obvious.  I like to go for either the mini travel size ones or a 2in1 bottle.

Toothbrush/Toothpaste

A mini size toothpaste is great especially if you're only travelling with hand luggage because of the restrictions.  I also like to find a toothbrush with a lid to stop it getting grubby inside the bag.  I normally just take a standard toothbrush rather than my electric one.

Hairbrush and Hair Ties

Hair ties are an essential if you're going somewhere hot so you can scrap all your head on top of your head like a pineapple (we all do it) round the pool or beach.  I normally just pack a comb in my toiletries bag for combing through wet hair and then have a Tangle Teezer in my carry on.

Makeup Remover Wipes

I keep these in my toiletry bag rather than my makeup bag.  So good if you don't want to carry your whole cleanser, toner and moisturiser especially the 3in1 wipes a lot of brands do.

Moisturiser

That said, I can't go anywhere without my moisturiser as my skin is super dry and if I've been burnt by the sun this is a life saver.

Plasters

You never know when those new sandals you bought might rub!

Body Lotion or Aftersun

After a long day in the sun it's important to re-hydrate your skin.  I really like using the St Tropez Everyday to give me a bit of added glow.

I think that pretty much covers the essentials, please let me know if you have any additions!

Lauren x