Live: Day in the Life

Start as we mean to go on? Nah I had such aspirations, but it is now 1 am on Tuesday morning and I’ve written nothing as I’ve got so distracted by watching old full set shows of my favourite bands on YouTube, that we seem to be in this position.

So I came up with a fun idea to make up for the lack of proper post. Tomorrow (Wednesday 12th), I will be posting a live Day in the Life on my instagram all day, join me as I go to work, get ready and hit the gym for my weekly pilates session. Just be sure to check out my instagram account throughout the day from 7am, find my account here.

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Hope to see you there!

Gwen

xx

 

 

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Whats in My Swim Bag?

Slight variation on the “What’s in my Bag?” thing, this time with a focus on keeping fit and exercise. Early every Sunday morning, I go swimming at the local pool and just swim lengths non-stop for at least an hour, it’s a highly enjoyable form of exercise and I find it so refreshing. So I thought I’d show you what I take in my bag to the gym, I always find gym kit type stuff interesting because it allows you to see if there is something you’re missing or you can better packing ideas. I cannot use a lot of gym equipment due to a malformed muscles, requiring a personal trainer ideally if I wish to use such equipment which is not in my budget at present so I enjoy jogging and swimming.

 

Anyway onto my swimming bag, I use this large Drop Dead Tote which has a cute Egyptian theme to it and I received it as an 18th Birthday present using it daily for sixth form and university. Heavy books and too much stuff is usually loaded up and doesn’t look to bad, I still occasionally use it for shopping due to the size but my day to day bag is slightly more business professional appropriate. It has several pockets and its large size is ideal for swimming as it can hold so everything I need.

First up I have the Large Bath Sheet, this is a really old large towel as I rather have something which doesn’t matter as much for swimming due to chlorine. Also it is large enough to keep you covered, and dry your body and hair without becoming saturated. Although I take a plastic bag to put my wet towel and tankini in afterwards, just so the bag doesn’t get wet although it doesn’t usually get past the towel let alone into the bag. I usually wear my Tankini Freya under my normal clothes when I go, and pack underwear for afterwards but I’m not going to show that in this post. I’m aware Tanikis might not be the best option but they work for not I need and this have proper underwired built in bras which provides the support and hold I need as being busty although next time Bravissimo etc. have a sale I may invest in a costume.

Obviously after a swim you need to shower and get off all of the chlorine etc. Sometimes I refill my travel sized TRESemme shampoo and conditioner bottles which I am using at the time but I thought I’d try something different picking up some bigger bottles to keep in the bag (promoting my laziness). So I have Vo5 Revive Me Daily Shampoo and Conditioner, which although aren’t as good as my usual TRESemme so won’t switch these strip the hair but unfortunately don’t add the moisture back ideal for stripping the chlorine but you have to ensure you use a leave in conditioner or hair oil too. There a good size bottle though and a good price as I brought them at pound land. I often find what body wash I use irrelevant as long as they clean so I have Nivea Crème Coconut Shower Cream at present, it’s rich and creamy and smells just sweet and sublte. Two more hair bits in the bag, one is hair bobbles to keep my hair mostly up while swimming and to help my tie it up and brush it out afterwards I have my trusty Tangle Teazer. For afterwards I have 3 pretty self-explanatory items first and foremost my Sanex Sensitive Deodorant, got to keep B.O. at bay after all. Then to re-add moisturise into my face I always have a trusty The Body Shop Mango Lip Butter although this always switches as well as the Simple Kind to Skin Hydrating Light Moisturiser (Travel Sized).

Finally I just have a Primark Purse from Summer 2014 which has held up amazingly well still looking pretty much brand new, jammed packed with slots and places to put everything it’s so damn handy although the back section only holds receipts. There’s also my mass of keys and keyrings which despite seeing somewhat ridiculous they are so simple to find in a bag.

Yeah so that is what is in my swim bag, what is in your swim bag/gym kit let me know in the comments below? Also let me know if you know any good products for dealing with chlorine.

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Day in the Life: Girly Catch Up

So I thought I’d do a fun little day in the life, follow me around type deal with a little trip for the day into Peterborough to meet up with some university friends that I haven’t seen in ages. Why Peterborough? With me been back at home in Northamptonshire, one of the girls living in Norwich and one living not too far from Peterborough it seemed like a good middle ground, you can get a direct train from Norwich and I can drive there in under an hour and it’s not too bad to park with loads and loads to do.

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The day started early, with an hour long drive to Peterborough with my friends train getting into town at around 10. Luckily getting in slightly earlier I managed to grab a cheeky Starbucks, with my ol faithful vanilla latte nothing eases a morning in town like a Starbucks latte. Then headed to the train station to meet my girlies to kick off a day of shopping and catch up. It was just so good to finally be reunited after so many months of not seeing the people you got used to seeing daily. We hit the shops for the morning, chatting, looking at cute items in Tiger and covering our arms in so many swatches I am so glad I had makeup wipes in my bag. I also helped my friends with suggestions and working out the best products to use, we share all of our product recommendations and ideas.

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For lunch we popped to the Handmade Burger Company, where I have the Italian Chicken Burger which was amazing. We split two lots of chips between us, and the portions and burgers were huge and it was more than enough food for the three of us especially for lunch. I highly recommend it, there are loads of options in terms of what is it as well as gluten free bread, burgers and pulled pork. The gluten free pulled pork, I am mentioning as my friend is celiac and got highly excited about the gluten free pulled pork. Gluten free food takes slightly longer to cook as it is all cooked fresh upon ordering, not that this is a bad thing and they explained it would only take up to 10 minutes longer. Also small benefit you go up to the counter to order, so can all order and pay separately so is idea for a group of friends, yet unlike the likes of Nandos your food all arrive simultaneously.

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After lunch we did a spot more shopping before popping to Starbucks, grabbed frapps and sitting in the beautiful sunshine by the cathedral. Just chatting catching up and talking about our futures, some teaching, doing masters, travel and work, we are all on such different paths on life but hopefully stay in contact and stay friends further down the road as university days are behind us. When it came to saying goodbye it felt so odd to say goodbye to everyone and knowing you won’t see each other for another month or so.

I had a very good day and once I got in I did nothing for the rest of the evening, preferring to vegetate than do anything more.

Graduation

Graduation

So on Thursday 10th September I finally had my graduation ceremony, although you may already of seen this on twitter and instagram and if you aren’t already following me why not? I graduated from the University of Hertfordshire with an Upper Second Class Honours in Economics. I’m so proud of my achievements and what I managed over 3 years at university, all the hard work finally paid off.  I’ve known my results since June, and the transcript arrived at the end of July as well as working in a graduate position since the middle of July it was somewhat a long time coming but with the time between finishing in May and the Graduation in September it is so nice to see everyone again. With some going on to masters in a variety of subjects while other have been travelling, everyone is doing something different and it’s nice to all be together one last time.

I loved the 3 years at university having some great times with friends, I met my amazing boyfriend there and just had such a great experience. I also loved my course, I find economics fascinating and I’m so glad I got to study it in such depth, it is also useful for getting a career and is such a great all round subject.

Long days studying, drinking cocktails, working one of the best jobs I think ever existed I definitely made the most of it. Obviously it’s not all positive with annoying housemates and a lot of coursework sometimes, but you just have work through these things and they are just a part of the university experience. All the hard work and stress finally paid off and the graduation ceremony was just a great way to end it all.

The graduation ceremony was held at St Albans Cathedral an absolutely beautiful setting, and I had an evening ceremony. Which meant I got the day off from work to get ready and I was exhausted at work the following day but it was so worth it. On Friday once I’ve collated all of the graduation photos and sorted out all of the pieces about my outfit and my makeup, I will also feature some of the other photos as it is such a nice setting for graduation.

Anyway talk to you again soon.

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Review: Soap and Glory The Fab Pore 2-in-1 Facial Mask & Peel

Soap and Glory the fab pore 2-in-1

I’ve wanted to try a proper face mask for a while but with it being a while since I tried a non-sachet face mask as I’ve had a few bad reactions to some in the past. I’ve been wanting to try the Soap & Glory The Fab Pore 2-in-1 Pore Purifying Mask & Peel and it was on offer in Boots so I took that as a sign to buy it. I brought this mid-July and after using it for a while I know feel as though I can now make a full review on it.


Soap and Glory, fab pore 2-in-1

The Packaging

The box reflects the usual Soap and Glory packaging with a pin up/ 1940s girl on the front, which as I’ve said before it’s not my personal taste but it fits in with the rest of the range. Then like a lot of the skin care it comes in a crisp white matte packaging, a beautiful tub with the logo embossed on the lid, a style I much prefer. The product is a good size and the tub is sturdy, the only thing is a lot of skin care around this price point is in glass packaging which is slightly more luxurious


What does it promise?

According to the Soap & Glory website this mask promises to:

“Infused with SUPERFRUIT™ YUZU and Soap & Glory’s super-active secret weapon, PORESHRINK-R™, this deep cleansing facial treatment is a must-have for any girl who wants to see less of her large pores. Use once-a-week for maintenance (unclogging pores, spot prevention, and face detoxing), or twice weekly if you’re battling breakouts. Guaranteed to give exhausted skin its fresh back. Genius in a jar!”


How to use it?

There are two ways in which you can use this face mask, depending on time you can use it for a deep clean or a quick refresher. You need to massage the fab pore into the skin, with a focus on the T-zone working it into the skin in order to sort it all out. If you are clog prone it just simply leave it for 5 minutes for a quick refresher or if you would like a more deep clean leave for 15 minutes. Rinse well and the use a moisturiser or treatment cream to finish off, to ensure you skin stays hydrated after a deep clean. It recommends to use the mask 1-3 times a week, which problem varies on how you wish to use it, certainly with a deep clean you would only opt to do it once a week.


soap and glroy, the fab pore 2-in-1 mask and peel

The Verdict

I love the feel of this mask feeling smooth and air whipped (in my opinion), with the obvious exception of the tiny microbeads which disappear as you work it in. It just feels amazing on your fingers. It’s also one of those where you can put a thick or thin layer on depending what you prefer really. So how did I find it?

 Oddly enough the first time I used it I opted for the deep cleanse the first time I used it, which for some completely odd reason seemed like the most logical choice. So I took a little bit out on my finger tips and massaged it into my face, following the directions on the box and paying particular attention to the t-zone. It starts with quite a bit of microbeads which as you work it into the skin appear to disappear or ‘pop’. Then I simple left it on and went to go and do something else. The mask will dry completely in the 15 minute time period but unlike other masks it doesn’t feel drying on the skin which is a pleasant change. To take it off I simple ran a flannel under warm water and took it off making small circles, rinsing occasionally. The best way I can describe the freshness you feel is, is like that fresh intake of breath you take after eating a strong mint, which is an odd sensation as it takes a while to get used too. Regardless of any odd feelings, it did leave my skin feeling a lot smoother to the touch as feels fresher and cleaner. I have definitely enjoyed it and I can see a clear difference in my skin especially on the first day or so.

So on to using it for the short time period of around 5 minutes. Once again it does a similar thing leaving my face feeling clean and fresh, but obviously not to the same extent. This is defiantly my fault for trying the longer first and in comparison my skin does feel smooth and clean just not as clean. Just another thought I mentioned previously about it not feeling drying on the skin, this appears to be a terms of thickness thing. If you so a thin layer it is definitely drying and tight but this is definitely a personal preference thing and takes nothing away from the results given by the face mask.

So I don’t think I would bother with the 5 minute mask again, but using the 15 minute mask once a week will fit in a lot better with my lifestyle as I am not going to spend ages on a skincare routine in the morning/evening I choose one that is simple and effective as I just want to chill when I get home on a evening. While 15 minutes on a Friday Night or at the weekend is much better fit my life. That’s the thing with skin care and face masks although you do need to make time for it pick products and a routine that works for you. I think this had made a difference to my skin but trialing it in a period where I wouldn’t suffer it form breakouts in general has made this difficult, but in general my skin feels nicer.

I do think it’s a good product, and definitely worth picking up on offer to see about repurchasing I think wait to see when it’s done, depends if I decided to try something new. I don’t get the name the mask and peel thing seems a little bit off for me as there isn’t really a peel aspect to it but hey its up to them.


Have you tried the Soap and Glory The Fab Pore Face Mask? What are your favorite face masks?

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April Roundup

April May

April ended way too soon, in less than a month I will of completed my final ever exam and coursework and I will of finished education forever, well probably. I just cannot believe it, its just unreal. Unfortunately there isn’t much in the way of favorites simply because between the mountain of coursework and revision I’ve barely had time for specific beauty favorites or anything so unfortunately I can’t really do my usual monthly favorites.

April was a mixed month it was nice to spend time with the family over the Easter break as well as catching up with old friends, it was nice to see where everyone is. Also its lovely that the weather has warmed up but it is somewhat bitter sweet simply because I’ve mainly been trapped inside doing coursework ect. It’s going to be so odd finishing university so I have to thoroughly relish in a world of flexibility and interesting research projects in which three years of study has been leading to. Overall I’m glad I went to university and got to study economics a underrated and fascinating subject, its just weird to think I am done as I have always known that I was going to University so not having my life completely planned is weird. Had anyone else had that when leaving education or the ending of plans you’ve always had? It’s just a weird mix of emotions but I’m looking forward to May, the end of exams, relaxing and getting to go to Slam Dunk Festivals as well as wanting to try out some new blog things probably as I now have more time.

So how is has your April been and what are you guys looking forward to in May?

Lots of Love

Gwenllian Branwen

xox

Happy Birthday

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Happy Birthday to me! Just a quick note to say today is my 21st Birthday, YAY! I’m finally and adult and there is not going back, although I don’t have to enter the real world until Graduation.

So today my amazing boyfriend is taking me to London zoo so I am insanely excited and my best friend and other half will be joining us. So have a great weekend everyone.

Love

Gwenllian Branwen

xxx

Student Room Tour

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I’d been meaning to do this post for a while but its taken a lot of time to get it in a semi presentable state in order to photograph. This is my second student house and this time I actually have a decent sized room which I share with my boyfriend.

Its pretty damn basic but I’ve made it cosy with candles and fairy lights. Cute plushies on the bed are always a nice addition, we have Frodo and Gandalf as we are both Tolken obsessed.

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As for the desk area as you can see I have most beauty items on the shelf underneath while my brushes and everyday sit on top with my blogging note book, diary and laptop. I’m not really sure what to say about it so if you want to know more about student living or anything just ask in the comments below.

Love

Gwenllian Branwen

xxx

Hello 2015! Looking forwards. . .

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Happy New Year to each and everyone of you as you try to recover from last nights festivities, it is finally 2015. I cannot believe its 2015 already although saying that all of last year the fact it was 2014 had never really hit me, time is simply flying.

So starting to look ahead and I’m thinking about what 2015 will bring, here are some of them:

  • Turning 21: This year I will 21 and in every single way I will be an adult which is just weird to think, although this birthday in the UK means nothing extra except the ability to hire a car (woohoo). It means a proper start to adulthood although I’m not going to do anything big for it I’ll probably just have a nice day out with the other half and maybe a few drinks with friends but I’m not a big birthday person really.
  • Finishing University/Graduating: In May I will of finished with education forever and I am left with no particular path in life which is crazy scary as I’ve always known that I was going to go to university and now its almost over its wierd. I’m happy it’ll be over, no more stress and essay but then its also leaving behind amazing friends I’ve made and so many good memories its really sad really. However I won’t graduate until November, well my graduation ceremony isn’t until then but it’ll be nice at that point to see everyone again. I just really hope I don’t trip.
  • Leaving home for good: This is entirely dependant on where I find a job but this is a realistic prospect that both excites me and genuinely excites me, as I don’t know where I’ll end up making a life for myself. Its just all so odd to me right now that for once at the start of the year I have no idea where I’ll be at the end.

So 2015 for me brings a lot of uncertainty and change that I am hoping to face head on and take what life throws at me. What does 2015 mean for you?

Love

Gwenllian Branwen

xox

Day 10: Festival Essentials

So with a bunch of my friends heading off to Download festival and festival season well and truly starting I thought I’d do a mini post on festival essentials.

These are all the things I think people over look or don’t consider, along side this I will also post a festival essentials check list which is here, so why not check that out too.

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First and foremost Wellys, even the littlest amount of rain can make the ground turn to sludge due to so many people trampling on it. Luckily there are so many on the market now to suit everyone’s taste I brought these from matalan last year for £14.00 so relatively in expensive considering you can no get stylish wellys and keep your feet dry at the same time. Failing that just take an old pair of shores you don’t care about, these ones I got for P.E way back in year 7 and it’ll save my lovely converse from getting ruined.

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A jacket is a must have, denim and faux leather jackets are every where these days and you can pick up one easily and within your price bracket, a jacket is ideal for later in the day as when it gets dark it get chilly quickly and although it might be warm in the crowd it’ll be freezing when you are walking back to your tent. Also they’ll be good if the weekend turns out to be a complete wash out. In addition to a jacket a fold up rain mac or poncho, isn’t a bad bet light weight and will keep you dry.

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Another sunny festival essential Sun glasses, here I have on the left my beautiful fat face shades and some free impericon ones I got given at warped tour. However, if I was attending a festival I would definitely take the free pair, do not take your beautiful favourite pair of sunglasses as you might break or loose them. Take a pair you’ve got given or go to a supermarket or primark and pick up a cheap pair that still looks good but doesn’t matter so much.

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Do not forget your sun cream and possibly pack after sun as well, look for spf 20 or above as you’ll be out in the sun all day even if the sun doesn’t feel strong or warm you are out in it all day so put some on anyway (unless its raining of course).  The after sun is always good just in case you have caught the sun too just to bring down the redness and soreness.

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Just in case you meet someone in a band and just can’t resist getting something signed don’t forget a market pen or sharpie, and a camera which is great for saving your phone battery when taking pictures and they’ll be better quality.

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Plasters are a must have for any accidents or shoes rubbing, you can get a good value packs of all different sizes but if you want something cute why not trying something like the very hungry caterpillar or all sorts of other funky designs. Also don’t forget medication, I’m allergic to near enough everything so I always have to take these sorts of things but won’t be a bad idea for people to pick up as even if you have mild hay fever been outside all day will bring it on. Always bring the medication you take regularly and anything else you think you might need over the weekend such as ibuprofen and paracetamol.

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Don’t forget any hair bits the biggest festival essential is Dry Shampoo, when you can’t wash your hair all weekend dry shampoo is a must to freshen it up also is great for adding volume for big hair. A small hairbrush no space for the real thing and a mini one will do the trick just a well, okay maybe not just as well but enough to do the trick. A mini hairspray for styling and they work so well even in the small size and is perfect for travelling or festivals. I’d also take but this is definitely optional is a leave in conditioner to keep my hair in good condition and keep the ends in check.

Finally some beauty bits. . .

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So for a start off Make Up, don’t bring a huge bag just the basics/essentials, so foundation, powder, one mascara, eye liner, eye shadow/face pallet, I’d especially recommend bringing a pallet with a mirror in here I have chosen my sleek 3 in 1 face pallet any will do so you can double up in purpose. If your taking make up don’t forget the make up wipes, I’d just these cute eye make up wipes from halo due to their small size, I also have the tesco face wipes which I use for make up wipes but can be doubled up as wet wipes so you can freshen up through out.

Another must have deodorant and body spray to keep smelling clean and fresh no matter how dirty you feel. And last but not least hand sanitiser, you have no idea where any ones been and those gross festival toilets so this is a must.

So there you go some festival essentials, why not check out my festival check list post or my post on travel sized items / miniatures. Hope you enjoyed this and it helped you guys out.

Love

Gwenllian Branwen

xox