Thursday, 31 July 2014

MONTHLY FAVOURITES: JULY 2014


It's the end of another month so that can only mean that it is time for my July, beauty favourites.
This month I have of course been living with a minimal amount of beauty products, using only the basics and using up everything that I already have.
With some things i've found it really hard to stick to just one product but with the products I am going to talk about I just keep coming back for more.

The Skin: I don't know if it was the change in water or the heat but something caused my skin to erupt last week and when I say erupt I mean spot city. I can always count on the Witch - Blemish stick [REVIEW HERE]  to help eradicate those pesky spots and to clear my skin.

The Hair: After warming up my blonde from a white shade to a honey shade I wanted to stay clear of my purple shampoo as I don't need any coolness adding to the tone. My favourite shampoo of the moment is the highlights shampoo from L'Oreal Elvive which I talked about [HERE] it is a really luxurious product that is non greasy and doesn't live your hair feeling dry.

The Eyes: Since my little fan girl obsession with Alexa Chung reignited after seeing her with Lisa Eldridge in this video - Alexa currently works with Eyeko and I have to say as a gal petrified of eyeliner the Eyeko skinny liquid liner has converted me! I talked about this month [HERE].

The Nails: It seems that lately I have wanted to keep my nails a little more understated. I have been wearing 'Mushroom' by Barry M and loving how it brings out a tan AND looks sophisticated and a little bit grungy at the same time.

The Face: I don't think that I can take much more of this sticky heat, especially after work on a commute home on the tube. Thank goodness for the Rimmel - Stay Matte powder, it helps me to look likes disheveled after the heat of the city has consumed me. Full review [HERE]

Which products have you been loving this month?

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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

THE NOTES: THE FRENCH CONNECTION BLOW BAR


Last Sunday I took myself down to Regent Street. 
I ate a lot of Magnum ice cream and absorbed the summer time buzz in central London.
On Sunday's, Regent Street is closed off from road traffic and the streets are lined with performers and as much as the live bands delighted me, I was in the area to check out the new Blow Bar nestled within the French Connection store. 
After seeing a glittering review on the Vogue website I was very excited to be invited along to see how I could be transformed into a pampered lady in under an hour, all complete with a few glasses of Prosecco of course!

With eight looks from natural beauty to rock chick to choose from I started my treatment's with hair stylist Ayesha who worked her magic on my hair.



To help restore some life into my damaged tresses, Ayesha used the Redken Extreme shampoo and the All Soft conditioner to pack the nutrients back into my dry, over processed hair, all whilst giving me the most relaxing head massage.
Ayesha then used the Redken Iron Shape 11 to make sure my hair was protected from the heat that was going to be applied via a curling wand to create the loose waves.

With my hair waved to perfection and feeling much more supple, shiny and soft it was time for a manicure. 

The Blow Bar team use OPI polishes so you know that you are having a quality polish applied to your nails, I went for the shade: 'Honk if you love OPI' which is a beautiful, deep purple shade.

After another glass of Prosecco and a flick through Vogue whilst my nails dried it was time to head over for make-up.
The Blow Bar uses Lord and Berry products which are some of my absolute favourites when it comes to products for the lips and eyes.
As I was sticking with the rock chick theme I decided to try a smokey eye/deep purple lip look.


And after just 20 minutes the finished look was revealed!
Sexy, smokey and seriously sultry.

The team at The Blow Bar are super friendly and make you feel very welcome.
I think this is the perfect way to get glam in your lunch break or whilst you're out shopping and all in under 30 minutes!
At £20 for a make over, £15 for perfectly painted paws and £25 for a blow all out do - it is an affordable quickie with fantastic results.

Have you ever tried The Blow Bar?

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Tuesday, 29 July 2014

THE JEWELLERY: CLAIRE'S AND OTHER STORIES


It all started last week when my hair band snapped and my hair was sticking to the back of my neck.

The nearest place to source some hair bands was actually Claire's - now I haven't actually been in Claire's since I had my ears pierced when I was about twelve years old however they have some pretty cool hair accessories in there, everything from clip in feathers to faux plaits.

I found myself looking at the Hello Kitty section and decided to buy a little pendant because I love Hello Kitty and I thought that it was something a little different to wear around my neck as opposed to my standard, sideways cross .

Somewhere between Claire's and home, I ended up on Regent's Street in 'And other stories.' I have heard golden reviews of the store from the likes of Viviannadoesmakeup and my work colleague Sarah so I headed in for a nosey.

I have been looking for some simple ear studs for a while now as endless hoop wearing has caused my piercings to tear, I found the beautiful diamante studs and instantly loved their simplicity.
I was really impressed with the jewellery in 'And other stories' it is a mix of bulky and dainty pieces with a tribal twist which is the style I like.

What do you think of 'And other stories?'
How long has it been since you popped into Claire's?

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Monday, 28 July 2014

THE FASHION: THAT ZARA DRESS



With the weather in London resembling a seriously hot oven and trip to the theatre to see The Book of Mormon on the cards, I decided that something airy, light and long was required.

Step forward the Zara sale.

I found the backless, tribal print maxi on the £20 and under rail and after contemplating a small or medium, I went with the small as the sizing is more on the over side than the under.
The fit of the dress is loose but not too baggy in all the right places.

I thought that the side slit was quite sexy and for slightly shorter girls like myself it doesn't make you look stumpy as the hem line falls to above the ankle.

I like to pair my maxi with my Dune 'Gibby Wedges'  and on some occasions my favoured, floppy hat.

I was informed at the till that this dress was brought to the counter eighteen times that day, I must have good taste *wink face.*

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Sunday, 27 July 2014

THE WEEK #30

My week through Instagram: @goodgollymisshollie  Working from Shoreditch House | Quote of the week | Follow me on Pinterest HERE | Sunbathing in Green Park | My favourite view | Charity fundraiser for Sparks | Strawberry Lambrini for summer days | Working @ The Beaufort Chelsea | Dinner @ Bluebird

* * * * * * * * * *

Sunday night kicked things off with dinner at The Bluebird in Chelsea (ofcourse) where I said goodbye to my family who were visiting from America, we have a lovely evening catching up and my cousin presented me with the most beautiful piece of art work for my new flat, she is a very talented young lady.

This week I have spent time fundraising around London for the Sparks charity which was set up to fund research into children's medicine, after raising a hunky amount of money my team and I retreated to the Bavarian Beerhouse in Tower Hill, of course as a non beer drinker I opted for a G&T.

Work has been busy this week so aside from working on the go (Beaufort House in Chelsea is a lovely place to work on a sunny day) I have had my head in my macbook although this weekend provided some solace as the sun was blazing hot, after breakfast at Borough Market my fella and I headed over to Hyde Park where there was  not a patch of grass spare, we took a picnic and spent our afternoon in the sunshine eating lots and drinking the good stuff - Lambrini of course - Classy Birds!

'Till next week





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Saturday, 26 July 2014

THE NOTES: DEALING WITH THE CITY EXHAUSTION


Taken from my Instagram: @goodgollymisshollie | My nightly walk home

If there is one thing that I can't deny, it is how in love I am with London, of course if you are a regular reader of GGMH you will already know this but I have to say that actually living here is a whole different kettle of fish - I wouldn't want to be anywhere else but my word is it exhausting.

I was recently chatting to my friend, someone who has been in a long term relationship with the city for a while and I asked her if this mental exhaustion ever goes away, she smiled wryly and simply replied: 
"Of course it doesn't, you just have to come home, drink a lot and get up and do it all again the next day."

Now i'm not saying that we should all be hitting the bottle to deal with exhaustion but I do think that something has to be said in the way that exhaustion can be managed.

Living and working in central London, everyday is a battle - you battle with the alarm clock ringing at 6am, you battle for a place on the tube, you battle to get from A to B in the street, you battle at work to meet deadlines and then you start the transport battle again, it's tiring and I have found that sometimes it can turn me into a bit of a Moody Margaret.

Not wanting to be a moody Mags I try to set an hour aside every night to myself even when I get home from a bar at 12am after an eleven hour day I always try to set aside some time to have a cup of tea and think/do about absolutely nothing at all - I have to tell you it really does work, a little time to myself reboots me so that I am ready to start next battle.
It's goodbye Sour Sally and hello Balance Barbara.




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Friday, 25 July 2014

THE HAIR: L'OREAL PREFERENCE GLAM HIGHLIGHTS NO.2


Last Wednesday I was shown the footage of a film that was made at an event I worked on.
 I can remember thinking, who is that girl with the horrendous roots and stark, block coloured hair?
This of course was me, but I didn't want to admit to having such trashy hair.

That evening I was flicking through Stylist magazine on the tube and came across the
L'Oreal - Recital Preference - Glam Highlights advert featuring Gossip Girl's Blake Lively.
I loved the shade of her blonde hair so much that I decided to try and recreate it.

To begin, my stark, white blonde hair needed toning a few shades of darker blonde.
I used the L'Oreal - Recital Preference hair colour in the shade: 7.3 Florida - Honey Blonde.
This left my hair in a block shade of dark, golden blonde - verging on the light, caramel brown colour tone.

I then went in with the glam highlights.
I bought No.2 for dark blonde to light blonde hair, this is the shade that was developed for Blake Lively herself.
(The glam highlights kits do also come in dark brown and light blonde variations.)

The kit itself is pretty self explanatory, you simply mix the bleach solution and then apply a generous amount of product to this rivets in the specially designed highlighting brush.
I didn't find this brush overly effective as the teeth pulled on my hair but I have to say it is a great way to apply highlights to your own head with precision.
I highlighted random sections of my hair concentrating on the ends and face framing strands and left the mixture on for 10 minutes to develop.
This was more than enough for me as the bleach started to lighten my hair immediately.

(Picture taken from my #shaveorstyle day at Michael John - I coloured my hair myself, at home this picture just depicts the colour blend best)

As you can see from the photo's the colour is a lovely warm, golden blonde which I think looks a whole load better than the bright white shade that I had going on.

I really recommend the Glam highlights kits as they are so easy to use and very effective at allowing you to add dimension to block coloured hair.

Have you tried the Glam highlights kits?




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Thursday, 24 July 2014

THE NOTES: WHAT'S IN MY MULBERRY ROXANNE?


I find it hard to believe that this post hasn't yet been featured.
It seems to be the bloggy-norm that whenever you find yourself with a new piece of arm candy, a 'what's in my bag' post must follow and since I now have my dream bag, the one I want to spend the rest of my life with, it is time to introduce you all.

After some very intricate research and over four years worth of thought, I decided that I was going to purchase a Mulberry bag as a treat to myself for landing a role in London and passing my second year of university.
At first, I was sure that a brand new Bayswater was going to be the one however, my long standing love affair with somebody named Roxanne prevented me from handing over a very hefty large amount of cash in John Lewis.

I have loved the Roxanne bags ever since I was a waitress in my local greasy spoon and a very wealthy customer had one on the crook of her arm, a real one.
Back in 2004 these bags were the bags to be seen with and will go down in history as one of the most iconic handbags of all time.

Unfortunately Roxanne isn't made anymore and hasn't been around for a long time but I do believe that she is timeless, and she wears better with age.

I must warn you that because of this bags rarity, there are a lot of fakes on the internet and some fantastic fakes at that.
I bought my Roxanne online from a reputable lady who had all of the original proof of purchase receipts, she had been the owner of this back for some 10 years and knew all of it's history, every scuff and stain could be explained.

I did a lot of research into the type of leather, the distinctive features and the ways to spot a fake Roxanne before I bought it and I can safely say that my Roxanne is 100% genuine, 2004, darwin leather, Mulberry bag.

So onto what is inside it..
Day to day I haul around a whole host of things as you can see, some of the items are obvious as to where they are from however, my Oyster card holder is from Paperchase, my sunglasses are Primark as is my umbrella, mirror and pencil case and my notepad is from TK Maxx.

What's in your bag?

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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

THE LIFESTYLE: HOW TO MAKE ANYWHERE FEEL LIKE HOME







I have done a fair bit of moving around lately, my parents recently sold the house where I grew up - you can read about that [HERE] and until their new place is built they are living in a rented house.

Having moved a good three times in two months 
I have learnt that you can make anywhere feel a little bit more like home with just a few tweaks and homely touches.
A few weeks ago I talked about how I utilised the small space I was allocated at the rented house 
in [THIS POST] and in my first year of university I talked about how I made my halls of residence feel like home [HERE].

Today I am going to show you how I made my London flat feel like home for under £15.
The first thing I did was add some colour to the white, clinical shelves.
I bought a string of red, love heart fairy lights from Ikea and draped them across the unit.
Not only do they add a little va va voom in the day time but they make the place look super cosy at night time.

Behind my desk area is a teal coloured noticeboard and whilst the colour itself isn't offensive, the long stretch of block colour looked a little flat so I gave it the Hollie touch and turned it into an inspiration board.
I ripped up my old Vogue, Glamour and Cosmo magazines and created a collage of my fashion and beauty muses.

My shelves were looking a little bare and with barely anything down here to fill them with I decided to display my favourite boots and heels as well as creating a little jewellery holder out of an antique teacup and saucer.
Finally, a fail safe way to add a little comfort to any room - a candle.
Mine is a vanilla scented candle from Ikea which I bought for a bargainous 50p.

How do you make somewhere feel more like home?
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Tuesday, 22 July 2014

THE FASHION: PRIMARK/SPITALFIELDS MARKET HAUL



I seem to have this thing when I know there is an occasion coming up.
Whatever it is seems to make my entire wardrobe redundant and I need to buy something new.
Of course, with this in mind I dragged my chap into the Oxford Street Primark and started my hunt for  new outfit.

I ended up finding a gorgeous printed, tea dress - it was the summery, pinks and purples that reminded me of a sunset I once saw and with that the dress was sold.
At £13, Primark prices are definitely on the rise as I remember buying a similar dress a few years ago for around the £6-£8 price point.

The second piece that I bought from Primark had me written all over it.
I knew that I would get some serious wear out of it, it reminds me of a Turkish carpet mixed with a Mexican poncho, it is super warm to wrap up in when the sun goes down and it looks great with dresses and jeans.

Finally, a little earlier in the week I was doing a fair bit of work around Shoreditch, East London - Spitalfields market had been recommended to me a few times, so I took the opportunity to head over for a browse.
After weeks of putting it off, I ended up buying a floppy hat.
I know - so cliche however, after umming and arring for so long I think it was a good decision because I haven't taken it off my head since I bought it.
I feel that in the capital you can get away with such a flamboyant headpiece a little more and I have been wearing it with maxi dresses, midi dresses, jeans, skirts - you name it.

What have you spotted in the shops recently?
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Monday, 21 July 2014

THE HAIR: MACMILLIAN #SHAVEORSTYLE AT THE MICHAEL JOHN SALON KNIGHTSBRIDGE



This week marks a special week in the Macmillan cancer support calendar, it is the #shaveorstyle fundraising week which allows anyone to get involved by shaving or styling their hair to raise some money for the support of sufferers and relatives of cancer.

People facing cancer experience hair loss and changes to their appearances that affects everything from how they look, to how they feel by taking part in the #shaveorstyle campaign you are standing proudly alongside these incredibly brave people fighting cancer.
Many people (like myself) get into a routine of styling our hair in the same way everyday so this is the perfect opportunity for us to all to give something new a try.

When Macmillan asked if I would like to take part in the #shaveorstyle campaign I was thrilled as I know through my late grandfather's battle with cancer that Macmillan do a fantastic job in caring for not only those suffering with cancer but also their family's too.

On Saturday I was invited to the iconic Michael John salon in Knightsbridge where the fantastic stylist Jon Monks helped me to create my perfect hair style that is super quick and easy to re-create.

 I really love festival ,boho, loose waves paired with a messy french plait so I took Jon some pictures for inspiration and he came up with a modern, sexy style.

All you need to re-create this look is:
 A handful of bobby pins
A bobble
Some ghd's or a curling wand.

Due to my over processed hair being rather delicate at the moment, Jon began by giving my hair a deep treatment using the Kerastase 'Masque Force Architecte' which is the best reconstructer that anybody has ever used on my hair, you apply the treatment and then apply a little warmth to work the magic.



Once my hair was rinsed and feeling amazingly nourished and soft, Jon applied a little product to my damp hair, the Elixir Kultime to nourish my hair with argan oil and the Denimorphose mousse to add volume and texture.



After blow drying my fringe straight Jon sectioned off other areas of my hair and pointed the hair dryer downwards so that the follicles shut making my hair look less dull and more shiny.
Next up is was time to use Jon's trusty, hot pink ghd's to create some super loose waves in my hair, curling alternate pieces both away and towards my head.


Now, you could just leave it there, very Sienna Miller-esc if I do say so myself however, I wanted to take it a step further.
Due to my hair having various areas of breakage a french plait wouldn't have been possible however, Jon suggested a messy plait created by pulling random pieces of hair together would look just as cool and even more bed head.




To complete the look Jon used bobby pins to twist the back of my hair up, you can be as messy as you like with these because the more 'slept in' it looks - the better.


And there you have it, my perfect boho, summer up do.

Why not recreate this style whilst raising money for Macmillan by snapping a selfie of your very own boho, summer up do, sharing it on social media using the hashtag #bohochic to @shaveorstyle and donating £3 by texting STYLE to 70550.

For more information on the Macmillan #shaveorstyle campaign click HERE

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Sunday, 20 July 2014

THE WEEK #29

My week through Instagram: @goodgollymisshollie Sunbathing | Cocktails @ The Folly | My darker shade of blonde | Milk Bubble Tea | My favourite store in the whole world | Studio set up in Shoreditch | #shaveorstyle at the Michael John salon Knightsbridge  | Sunbathing in Hyde Park

* * * * * * * * * * *

This week my face melted. Literally.
With the temperature's sky high in London town there was no way anybody could avoid the sweaty upper lip and sticky back.

Monday saw my friends 23rd birthday and a group of us spent it at The Folly just off London Bridge, the food was okay but the cocktails were better, I went for a 'Princess Sparkles' which came complete with prosecco, vanilla and blackberry.

The rest of the week was spent working, except for Friday which I spent the entire day in Hyde Park  soaking up the sun before escaping to the air conditioning in Topshop.

Yesterday I was invited by Macmillan to join in their #shaveorstyle campaign where I headed to the Michael John Salon in Knightbridge to give my hair a super style that you can easily re-create, look out on GGMH. tomorrow for a post all about that.

This weekend I am joined with my family from across the pond, last night we headed to The Prince of Wales Theatre to see 'The Book of Mormon' which although is incredibly un PC it is hilarious.


'Till next week

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Saturday, 19 July 2014

THE NAILS: ESSIE ' CROCADILLY'



I recently bought two 'Repstyle' nail polishes from Essie.
Crocadilly and Snake, rattle and roll are part of the Snakeskin Magnetic range.
Now, I don't think they are worth a penny for their magnetism however, colour and finish wise they are gorgeous.

My favourite of the two is Crocadilly a hunter, iridescent green and I have been wearing it on my nails constantly.
There's something so alluring about the emerald-grey toned formula.
The staying power is pretty good too, as I work from my Macbook a lot of the time I find that my nails can become chipped more easily, Crocadilly lasts around four days chip free, which is great.

Which is your favourite Essie polish?
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Friday, 18 July 2014

THE FASHION AND LIFESTYLE: PORTOBELLO MARKET HAUL


Spending my Saturday afternoon at Portobello Market is one of my favourite things to do, never mind the Notting Hill area being my favourite place in London (but don't tell Camden that.)


Portobello Road hosts the weekly antique market every Saturday and if like me you are a sucker for anything vintage then this is the place to be.

I headed over to Kensington and Chelsea last weekend to see what I could find and I ended up returning with a random collection of goodies.

I like to collect antique cups and saucers and my collection is becoming quite vast, I try and find interesting, mis matched sets, Portobello Market is one of the best places to find them cheap.

I bought a tiny blue and white teacup and saucer for a bargainous £4.
I am currently using it to store my jewellery in whilst I am down here in London.

I also purchased a vintage pair of glasses, now I know there is the whole stigma regarding wearing glasses for fashions sake but there was something about the oversized lense / tortoiseshell frames that interested me.
Finally, I got my hands on the popular 'More issues than Vogue' t shirt as I felt it was rather fitting.




Have you ever visited Portobello Market?
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Thursday, 17 July 2014

THE FASHION: DUNE 'GIBBY' SANDALS




I'm pretty lucky in the way that my work uniform is smart casual but more so leaning further towards the casual side on normal office days.
Of course, due to my love of clothes I tend to choose smarter clothes to wear to work daily as blazers, blouses and skirts are the kinds of clothes that live in my wardrobe.

I have been in the market for a nice pair of heels for work that can take me from the office to after work drinks without looking too flashy or too 'night out in Liverpool-esc.'

Ladies, I think I have found the perfect pair
and they're comfortable and super easy to walk and run for tube in.

The 'Gibby'* wedges by Head over heels @ Dune
are made up of a small medium height 8cm, cork wedge and elasticated straps.
Super, simple but also elegant and they look fabulous with skirts, jeans and leggings.

The Gibby wedges come in a choice of black or beige and are available from House of Fraser in their online sale for steal at £27 HERE.





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Wednesday, 16 July 2014

THE BEAUTY: BEAUTY IN MY BATHROOM


A guilty pleasure of mine is to watch the In the bathroom with.. videos by make-up artist and beauty journalist Sali Hughes.
My favourite is: In the bathroom with Charlotte Tilbury as I am such a fan girl when it comes to Mossy's firey haired make-up artist.

With Sali's videos in mind, I thought that I would take you on a little tour of my very own bathroom.
Obviously not all of my make-up is down here in London as I couldn't imagine how heavy my suitcase would be if that were the case.

I am lucky enough to have a lot of shelves, cupboard and nooks in my bathroom so I made the decision to store all of my beauty favourites in there.

My make-up is stored in the little nooks, I have it all laid out so that I can locate and grab each item when I am in a huge rush at 6:45am.

As always, if I have previously talked about any of the products mentioned below you will be able to click on them to take you to a full review.


I keep my fake tan essentials at the top, up there I have a Lauren's Way - Glam Tan a St Moriz, my Sunkissed - Tanning moisturiser and of course my tanning mitten/gloves.

On the second ledge down I keep my base and face items:

Mac 'Studio Fix Fluid' in NW20
Maybelline 'Baby Skin'
Bourjois 'Chocolate Box' Bronzer
Maybelline Brow Drama
Mac - Mineralise Skin Finish in 'Soft and Gentle'
Krylon Blush in 'Glossy Rosewood'
Rimmel 'Stay Matte Powder' in 001 Translucent
Glo Minerals Concealer
MUA 'Cover and Conceal
Collection 'Lasting Perfection Concealer
Dove Lip Care Balm

On the next shelf I keep my eye make-up favourites:

Urban Decay - Naked Palette #1
NYC 'Big, Bold, Curl Mascara
Benefit 'They're Real' Mascara
Urban Decay eyeshadow in 'Toasted'
Maybelline Colour Tattoo in 'On and on bronze'
Glo Minerals brow duo
L'Oreal Chrome shine shadow in 'Metallic Olive'
Mac 'Fluid Liner' in 'Blitz & Glitz'
Crest Whitening Strips
Tweezerman Tweezers

Finally, I keep my nail polishes and nail care items on the last ledge, an assortment of Nails Inc, Essie, Barry M and Ciate polishes

How do you organise your beauty?
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