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Friday, October 14, 2016

Okay, why not one last post packed with the remaining holiday snaps from Hvar to give your Friday feeling a boost? These are the leftovers from many, many photos I took over 5 days, but Hvar is certainly one heck of a photogenic island.

Whilst you feast your eyes on landscapes in 26 degree heat, I'm starting to think of autumn and winter a lot more - I know, the earlybird in me ;) I'm thinking of skipping straight to Christmas because it's the time of year that excites me most, and feel there's more time to plan and enjoy the season more than before. I've got loads of ideas in the mix, so prepare for some Good Housekeeping/putting out festive finds as early as the shops, and if you have any requests leave them below! But back to the sunshine...

Where to eat vegan in Hvar Hvar - How to get there and island informationAmfora Grand Resort Hotel

Lots of Love,
Lauren x

Some products in this post may have been sent for review or gifted, and will be marked with a * or c/o. All opinions are mine are not influenced by brands or companies. Please see my full disclaimer for more.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Is there anything better than an autumnal lipstick? Okay, maybe autumnal jumpers/candles/smells/promise of Christmas but nonetheless, autumnal lipsticks are pretty fab. I'm a brown-berry toned gal myself - the occasional nude, some red, but mainly a brown hue to rival that of conkers and fallen leaves.

I have plenty a lipstick in my makeup drawers (despite my knack for decluttering) but with Smashbox releasing over 100 new shades and never trying the brand before, I thought 'heck why not?' The Be Legendary range is a mix of comfortable matte shades with everything from your basic berry to stone cold greys to chose from, and found myself leaning more towards lighter terracotta hues - the perfect mix of orange, brown and red to give any old pumpkin or leaf a run for it's money!

Some of my faves? Wrap Party (1) has become my most worn and is bloomin' gorgeous - it's the perfect blend of orange and brown without looking too yellow on the teeth but still a bold warm for the transitional weather. Long-lasting, matte without being too drying, and would look good on anyone day or night! #sold

A lighter and more nude-brown version comes in the form of Latte (2), a fitting name for what looks like a creamy latte with enough caffeine to give you a kick (not that I'd know, coffee gives me the jitters!). The slight orange undertone makes it a lot more daytime appropriate, a little bit peachy too so if you're not feeling fully-autumnal yet, this may be a good shout ;)

Little more on the brown side but still with a hint of terracotta-berry is Dirty (3), quite a similar shade to NYX Sandstorm but with more staying power. Potentially a dark Kylie Jenner-esque vibe, it again has good staying power and warmth to add colour to those cool cheeks, all whilst getting that vampy vibe on.

If you're more red than brown, then First Time (4) is a perfect pinky shade with enough brown to mute down for autumn, soft and warm with a little peach undertone that would go well with those colourful prints or a dark jumper for the daytime. In the dark, it looks a bit more terracotta, but feels more wearable if you're not into the brown and orange shades, so a potential all-rounder all year!

Finally the darkest of them all - Hater (5); what a name to compliment such darkness eh? Saying that, there is a slight shimmer in the formula, barely noticeable but gives a little 90's nod. In natural light it has a rich brown tone to it, but under flash light you can see the orange base which really makes this a true 'Rachel Green out on the town and feeling it' lipstick - a close comparison would be Charlotte Tilbury 'Birkin Brown' which is my fave, but CT is more true brown with slight red, but as a cheaper alternative, Haters gon' hate ;)

Yes that was two winks in one post and I'm not sorry.

So that begs the question still - is there really anything as good as a selection of autumnal lipsticks? And if so, will you be picking up some of the Smashbox Be Legendary range? Or do you have a fave autumn lippy?

Lots of Love,
Lauren x

Some products in this post may have been sent for review or gifted, and will be marked with a * or c/o. All opinions are mine are not influenced by brands or companies. Please see my full disclaimer for more.

Website | Flickr | Tumblr | Twitter | Bloglovin | Instagram | Pinterest


Monday, October 10, 2016

Originally this post was titled 'Not Taking Photos of Yourself Doesn't Mean You Don't Love Yourself'. It was very long, and also not entirely true. Sometimes I don't like the way I look because I've had a breakout or I have carb bloat, or I've not showered and my hair is 9/10 grim.

Sometimes it's because I can't be arsed; I'm not a daily makeup wearer and if I need to put a face on for one thing I try to think of a way to get round it until a time when I'm doing something else to make foundation worth it. I have been planning a little challenge based on this, but more on that another time as I digress, because it seems taking photo evidence of my existence isn't as high on my list anymore.

Maybe it's the fact I'm the photographer, and unless I am cloned or another photographer is involved, I don't feel confident in having my photo taken a way I like it. I'm so alien now to posing and selfies with others that I just don't initiate it as much anymore, despite loving having photos as memory.

I guess it is confidence and routine then, the routine of insisting I stay behind the camera unless I can take a photo of myself and that I'm more BTS than posing, but also in the fact that it's been years since I've taken 20 photos of an OOTD in public and knowing how to 'werk it' confidently that I've forgotten and stepped away from it.

I always have a vision in my head of what I want, and that's why I feel as a photographer I'm good because usually we're on a similar wavelength that I know exactly how the want a shot and experimenting further for even cooler shots, whereas trying to get what I want across to someone else leaves me frustrated, sad and 'it's okay, I don't need an OOTD' because it's better to have nothing rather an a 5/10 something right?

Back in May I wrote about body image and how I was trying to take more photos of myself, and I've definitely slacked. Maybe I'm too comfortable with being off social media with others when we're together, getting shy at a Snapchat or not being appropriately dressed for a vlog, but whatever it is, I realise now I need to conquer it.

There is the whole addition of having the eye for a photo, angles, editing and 'dat blur', but I feel the conflicting side of wanting photos with people a certain way in a certain relationship (i.e BFFS let's take loads of pics of us at the beach or event) mixed with not wanting to impose, be constantly snapping and not knowing what I look like when I take photo, leads to a mini explosion in my mind and the iPhone stays out of sight. Yeah, memories sometimes are better than selfies, but having that visual diary of you in a place, doing something with someone or others is pretty nice too.

In conclusion, I need to take more photos of myself, and allow others to take photos of me and trust it'll be okay and if it isn't then I trust I can say it's not - be as picky a model as you are a photographer Lauren, run that shizz. Because if you can't trust yourself to do that, who will?

Are you a fan of having your photo taken? Does asking for selfies ignite fear or it's totally easy to do? Have you had camera shy problems in the past?

Lots of Love,
Lauren x

Some products in this post may have been sent for review or gifted, and will be marked with a * or c/o. All opinions are mine are not influenced by brands or companies. Please see my full disclaimer for more.

Website | Flickr | Tumblr | Twitter | Bloglovin | Instagram | Pinterest


Friday, October 07, 2016

I'm currently writing this after making a big White Company 'Winter' candle order, which is probably the biggest contrast to sitting by a pool and getting a tan right? Man I'm so ready for full on festiveness.

But before I get too ahead of myself, I've still got one or two posts left on my trip to Hvar, and what's a trip away without a sneak around the hotel itself...

Amfora is a ten minute walk from the main port, curving along the coastline with some beautiful views and buzzing crickets to accompany you morning and night. I don't think I've walked as much to and from and around a hotel as I have Amfora - what ever floor or wing of the hotel you stay in, you will be working those thighs let me tell you!

Part of the Suncani chain on the island, Amfora is more traditional in the sense there's a pool (with slide), big buffet and a few activities going on; one sister hotel we visited had more of a spa feel, which was nice to get us out and walking as it's more central to the town, a slice of calm in a (literal) sea of noise, and another bonus of this is that you can visit any of the hotels/amenities under the company umbrella and use your key card as payment, so everything is made easier at departure and saves you carrying so much money.

But, yes there's a big pool (which is freezing cold) with white and blue striped towels which I really loved and a great balance of upbeat party vibes and chilled relaxing in the sunshine - great for reading a book or 5. Breakfast is a vast buffet of anything you could ever want, including at least 5 different dairy free milks (amazing!) but apparently porridge isn't a thing so we had several confused looks when we asked 'can you microwave this please?' - not even a holiday can get between me and my porridge.

When we first arrived, we were set-up in a standard sea view twin room, which I have to say was lovely and modern (and a shorter walk, seriously, my legs) but the staff upgraded us to a larger two-bedroom suite that was better because I ended up scrolling on my phone until late and faffing around in the morning which probably would have annoyed Scarlett, but hey, all worked out ;)

The suite is good if you need space; a little dark and more basic decor but as you only sleep and chill there it was more than enough! One tip, if you're a granny or need peace, is that the sea-view rooms on one side face towards an outdoor nightclub by the hotel (by day it's a lovely setting for photoshoots, hello mint-blue shutters!) which is where our first room was, but the suites are more tucked away and noise-free, which means you can go to sleep at 9pm if you want to and never hear a thing - result.

My one qualm with the room? The air-con. Oh lord, I've never wanted to be more clammy in my life! I tried everything to turn the air-con off, but alas it was either blowing ice cold air out all night long or whirring loudly when you closed the vents so I went for the former - got a nice week-long cold and chill out of it too, thanks regurgitated air.

Amfora is a great all-rounder, and if I came back to Hvar I'd either AirBnb or stay here, purely because it has a great atmosphere, comfy beds (a must) and it's so nice to walk easily into the main town and experience so much whilst not being too far from 'home'. It's not overly family orientated, nor too posh that you feel bad wearing your slippers every where because flip flops are evil, just the perfect balance of being able to plop yourself by the pool and enjoy a cold dip between books, being able to walk off and feel safe, and have access to all the facilities of the sister locations too - maybe sort the air-con situ though and we'll be 'cool' ;)

Have you stayed in Hvar before? What's your perfect hotel?

Lots of Love,
Lauren x

Some products in this post may have been sent for review or gifted, and will be marked with a * or c/o. All opinions are mine are not influenced by brands or companies. Please see my full disclaimer for more.

Website | Flickr | Tumblr | Twitter | Bloglovin | Instagram | Pinterest
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