Beauty, Fashion, Lifestyle

Autumn Essentials…

Autumn; the sun begins to cast a golden glow on the crisp frost creeping over the fields, the vibrant colour of the leaves on the trees begin to turn a fiery red – it’s the beginning of a chilly (and rainy!!) yet magical season, and a real favourite of mine. Shops start stocking up ready for Halloween, fairy lights begin to appear, casting an exciting sparkle as the evenings get darker, spicy wintery drinks start to appear in coffee shops… What’s not to love?! To celebrate the first weekend of Autumn, I thought I would share with you my Autumn favourites, from food, through to beauty products, through to general day-to-day Autumn delights.

Food 

To me, Autumn sparks the end of summery salads and invites the start of warm, hearty lunches and dinners. I thought I would share with you one of my favourite go-to autumnal dishes. As you will have seen from last week’s blog post, I’m trying to minimise the amount of meat and dairy in my diet, and I’ve been making lots of delicious meals from Lucy Watson’s ‘Feed Me Vegan’ cookbook. I’ve also been searching around for some other vegan recipes, which fill that hearty-dish-shaped-hole in my stomach, especially for during the week when I’m at work.

Vegan chilli

This one is super easy to make, and the best thing about it – make it in bulk, and freeze it! That way, you are always prepared for weekday lunches. I stumbled across this  One Hour Vegan Chilli. I absolutely love chilli – for me, this is the perfect autumnal meal, as it warms the soul and makes you feel good inside, whilst staying on the healthy bandwagon. It’s super easy to make, with loads of veggies, low price ingredients, and you essentially just throw everything in the pan and let it simmer for 40 minutes.

Vegan One hour chilli

Herbal teas

The only thing I can critique about this wonderful season, is it’s usually when all the bugs come out, the dreaded flu epidemic takes over the country, and I come down with some sort of terrible cold/sore throat. One of things I find keeps those colds at bay are herbal teas – full of natural sources of goodness, and generally tasty. The season always triggers the delicious autumnal flavours to come out of the woodwork, which make you feel all warm inside and excited for the season ahead. My current favourites are the Pukka and Twinings herbal teas, as they come in such a huge variety of flavours. A current favourite is the Pukka Apple and Cinnamon flavour – Cinnamon always makes me think of Autumn and the lead up to Christmas, so this is one I certainly get excited about!! The sweet tang of the apple also balances the spicy taste of the cinnamon. Another favourite is the Twinings Ginger Bread Green Tea – the sweet scent and taste actually makes you believe you’re eating gingerbread, so allows you to stave off those sugar cravings!! Last, but never least, is the Pukka Green Tea flavoured with Sweet Vanilla – I find that Green Tea on its own can sometimes leave quite a bitter taste, so the addition of the vanilla completely masks this, and makes for a lovely after-dinner cuppa.

Teas and ntebook

Beauty & Fashion

For those who know me, I’m not the most colourful and vibrant when it comes to my wardrobe. The furthest I stretch to in summer are light pastel colours (which are as close to cream and grey as they can be!!), and in the autumnal months, my favourite go-to colours are camel and burgundy (which is actually quite ‘out there’ for me!). They both really reflect the colours of autumn – the leaves turning to a deep red as they fall off the trees, and the golden sun in the mornings reflecting off the sparkling frost.

Jumpers & Slippers

Again, another reason I love Autumn – it’s the beginning of snuggly clothes season!! I picked up this gorgeous knitted jumper from New Look recently – it’s light enough to be able to wear a coat over the top, yet still warm enough to feel snuggled up and autumnal. The wide turtleneck allows you to snuggle deeply into the jumper, whilst allowing room for the fresh air at the same time if it’s a particularly sunny day. The perfect Autumn combination.

And of course, nothing makes you feel more snuggled and warm at home, than a great pair of slippers. These Emu Australia slippers are the perfect autumn/winter slippers – the woolly interior keeps your feet toasty and are hugely comforting for moseying around the house in.

Jumper and slippers

Skincare

As the frosty air and chill hits, it can be really hard on our skin and for me certainly, it can really dry it out. So it’s important to make sure you’re looking after your skin, keeping it fully moisturised to protect against the autumnal chill. I’ve pictured below my current favourite skincare products – for my morning routine, I’ve been using the Ren Evercalm Cleansing Milk which wakes up my skin, followed by the Garnier Micellar Water and The Body Shop Aloe Vera Soothing Day Cream. At night, I use the Lancome Bi-Facil Gentle Eye Make Up Remover, followed by the Lancome Gel Eclat cleanser and Tonique Confort to remove my base makeup. Just before bed, I apply two pumps of the Ren Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Oil, following by the V-Cense Revitalising Nightcream. This really leaves my skin feeling moisturised and healthy, and gives it that ‘glowy’ look throughout the day.

Skincareproducts

Autumn Nails

To complement the colours of Autumn, it has to be a burgundy nail!! My favourite at the moment is Chanel Rouge Noir. I find their nail polishes are extremely light, perfume-free and easy to apply, along with being long-lasting.

Polish

So there you have it – my Autumn favourites, I’d love to hear what you love, and your go-to favourites for this magical yet chilly season!

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Beauty

Taking Care of My Skin… My Daily Skincare Routine

Since I was young, I’ve always been incredibly lucky to be blessed with good skin (thanks, Mum and Dad). As I grew up, and even going through university, I found that I didn’t tend to need to do a lot to it to keep it in such good condition. I never used to pay huge attention to the quality of the skincare products that I used, how well I took my makeup off (especially after a night out – who wants to bother spending 10 minutes scrubbing your face, when you could crawl into bed and worry about that in the morning…?) and also the quality of the makeup products I used. However in recent years, I have noticed my skin hasn’t been as blemish free, and bright as it usually is. One factor that I do believe has made a huge impact, is my diet. I enjoy living a clean, healthy lifestyle, so when I’m eating natural and clean foods, along with keeping myself well hydrated my skin looks bright and glowing with a generally even skintone. The moment my diet starts to slip, and I eat overly processed or sugary foods, I notice myself waking up in the morning with relatively tired skin, that looks slightly dull and overly puffy, along with the odd spot or two which I’m naturally not used to.

Now I don’t think this is completely down to my diet – I do think this is also down to the years of using just a makeup wipe to take my makeup off (or not really taking it off at all!), with no proper cleansing routine, and not paying attention to what is actually going into my skin. So I decided now was the time I really needed to take proper care of what was going into my body in terms of my diet, but also the products I was using. One brand I have always heard great things about is Ren Skincare. It’s what I’d call ‘premium high street’ – more expensive than the likes of Nivea and Simple, but not too much that it would break the bank. Now that I have tried and tested these products, I truly believe that it is a worthwhile investment to buy great skin care products – a friend once said to me, you wouldn’t think twice about spending money on an expensive handbag which you may use for one season, and then it goes into your wardrobe and doesn’t come back out – however, your skin is something that stays with you, and you’ve got forever no matter what, no matter what state it’s in – so why wouldn’t you invest in it? This has really stuck with me, so it’s something that I truly believe you should prepare to invest in and do your best to take care of.

I have listed below my whole skincare routine, the products I have been using, how they’ve felt on my skin and the results I have had since using them.

Mornings:
First of all, I splash my face with cold water to wake myself up followed by scrubbing my whole face with a flannel, using just lukewarm water. I then take one pump of the Ren Evercalm Cleansing gel, and spend about 2-3 minutes, massaging this into my face with my hands. To wash this off, I scrub my face again with a flannel and use luke warm water until this is all off.

To follow, I apply my Micellar cleansing water with cotton pads- I absolutely love the freshness of my skin after I have used this, and I am currently using the Garnier Micellar water. Once applied, I then take half a pump of the Ren Skincare Evercalm Gentle Face Cream. This is quite a thick cream, which is why you will only need half a pump as it does go a long way. I then apply this with just my hands. Once this has been done, I then proceed to apply my daily makeup.

1st photo - skincare

Evenings:
I have finally ditched the makeup wipes (hurrah!) after realising how many different chemicals are used in them, and coming to the conclusion these simply cannot be good for my skin. I also noticed that however hard I scrubbed, in the mornings I would always have makeup residue left on my face, so clearly they did not do a great job at cleansing my face properly.

Now I begin my evening routine with the Estee Lauder oil-based eye makeup remover. I dab around 3 drops onto a cotton wool pad, and place it gently on my eye, leaving it for 30 seconds to let the makeup dissolve. I then carefully rub the makeup away from each eye. Following this, I take three pumps of my Estee Lauder cleanser onto a warm damp flannel and scrub my face. When all of my makeup is off, I then cleanse my face again, using the Ren Evercalm Cleansing gel. Once this has been done, I place a few drops of the Ren Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil onto my hands and massage this all over my face, followed by half a pump of the Ren Skincare V-Cense night cream.

2nd image - skincare

After just a week’s application, I noticed how much clearer and brighter my skin was, from waking up right through to going to bed. It felt so much more hydrated and clear, and I finally felt I was on the road back to having happy and healthy skin. Now I know this sounds quite tiresome, but I promise you, as soon as you have started doing this, you will notice the amazing difference in your skin even after just a week.

I hope you have enjoyed this post, and I’d love to hear about your routine and which brands work for you.

 

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