Wear | Life | Eats

Wear

This week I've really been getting back into my Dot perfume by Marc Jacobs.  I've been a fan of Marc Jacobs' scents for about 5 years now after falling in love with the Daisy one someone gifted me for my 21st birthday.  I got the Dot one for Christmas after smelling the one that my flat mate got the Christmas before. I'm a bit rubbish with buying perfumes and always end up with a long list for people to buy me for birthdays or Christmas.  That said I do have a ridiciously large perfume collection which I'll attach a photo of below! Dot is a real juicy floral scent and perfect for spring/summer.




Life

I think I've mentioned on here before that I like to treat myself fortnightly to a gel nail manicure.  I never have time to paint my nails and so they end up chipped or missing and just a complete mess basically so if I book them in to be done I know I will actually go and they will stay looking nice.  Now that the weather is starting to warm up I want to be able to get rid of the tights and replace them with sandals and open toed shoes so I thought I would start to get a gel pedicure too.  So this Saturday as well as my usual manicure I went for a pedicure in the same matching colour.  I think paint on your toes generally lasts longer so I'm hoping I will only have to have them done once a month but I will let you know how I get on.  I went for a blue glittery which I think is rather jazzy and cheery!

Eats

This weekend it was one of my friend's birthdays so she arranged for about 20 of us to go for a meal.  She originally wanted another restaurant but they were fully booked so she booked a mexican restaurant instead and it was actually really nice.  I'm not the biggest fan of spicy food and being so fussy I was a little worried about what I would be able to eat.  I went for vegetable burritos which came with rice and nachos.  It was a pretty big portion, especially for me, and I didn't manage to finish it but it was lovely all the same. The burrito was topped with melted cheese, my fave!  Another good thing about mexican restaurants is the cocktail menu, obvs ;)

I hope you all had an enjoyable weekend!

Lauren xx

The London Guide: Where to Eat and Shop



Oh London Town, my home town.  Now I need to not get too carried away here because I could honestly give you a list the length of my arm with all the amazing places to eat and shop in London and trust me my arms are long!

So starting off with places to eat I’ve tried to devise a list of different places that will meet everyone’s needs.  I can be quite fussy when it comes to food and favour Italian and Asian cuisines.  So here are my faves…



I happen to work very close to Borough Market so I get to frequent here a lot.  It’s only open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  Sometimes I like to just wander around and take in all the great smelling foods or sometimes I like to take cheeky tasters from all the stalls!  Pretty much everything you buy here is fresh which I love.  My favourite stalls are the olive stall which literally has olives stuffed with every kind of filling you can imagine and also the cake stalls which serve beautiful fresh cakes, especially the brownies!


I’ve developed a real love for Asian food in the last year.  I’ve always been a fan but I’ve been branching out a bit more recently rather than just having my usual mushroom chow mein from the local Chinese take-away.  There are some really really nice Asian restaurants in London and I am enjoying trying them all out!  Buddha Bar is one of my faves.  I love the dim sum here and they also do great sushi if you’re a sushi lover.


This is probably my favourite place in the whole of London.  Firstly they have amazing views over London which is lovely to see day or night when it’s all lit up.  The have some of the best cocktails in town and the most talented chefs.  They do some really good seafood here so if that’s your thing then it’s definitely worth a visit.  If not, then you should still go along for a drink just to check out the amazing view.



The Rainforest Café is a great place to take the kids BUT it’s not just for the kids!  When you step inside you literally feel like you have entered a rainforest, they have done the place out so well to represent a rainforest with sound effects also.  The food is quite Americanised so expect burgers etc.  I had a vegetable stir fry last time I visited.  They do some awesome desserts and milkshakes too.



Sketch is a really fun loving restaurant done out in really colourful décor.  They serve a mixture of food here and it’s quite ‘play it safe’ for people like me that don’t like to venture out too much.  I had risotto which was perfectly made and I would definitely visit again.  They also do really nice cocktails here and have a separate room at the front with a bar if you just wanted a drink.

Have I made you hungry? Let me know if you visit any of these places by tweeting me @wonky_lauren


So now onto my more experienced specialisms… shopping!  I won’t give you actual shops because the list would just be ridiculously long so here are a few of my favourites areas in London for shopping and a couple of my favourite department stores.


Starting off with Camden, home of the grungers, Goths, emos and punks.  Here you will find a real eclectic mixture of high street stores and outrageously bizarre stores.  Camden also has a really good market which goes along the riverbank.  It’s a nice place to take a stroll in the sunshine (when we get any!).  It also boasts some of London’s best tattoo and piercing shops so if that’s a bit of you then you’ve come to the right place!


In complete contrast to Camden we have Harvey Nichols in the luxurious area of Knightsbridge.  This is probably my favourite department store in the whole world.  It has everything you could ever want and I could easily spend a whole day in here.  It has 5 floors with everything from make-up, clothes, accessories, home furnishing, a cute little restaurant which serves great afternoon tea and a salon if you’re in need of a quick pick-me-up from a hard day at the shops!


Chelsea is another luxurious and expensive area in London which you will know if you’re a fan of the show [Made in Chelsea].  I actually come here the most to shop because I find it’s a lot less busy and hectic than the other parts of London.  The King’s Road is basically a really long road running through the centre of Chelsea with lots of great shops (high street and designer) as well as nice restaurants like Benihana, bar, pubs and clubs.  Phew.  They also have cute coffee shops which are perfect for stopping at to break up a day of shopping and if the weather is nice you can sit outside and enjoy the area (Blue Bird Café is my fave).


Well I had to mention this one didn’t I.  I wouldn’t say I exactly love it because it’s so bloody hectic ALL THE TIME but I kind of have a love/hate relationship with it.  It’s perfect if I just need to grab something after work and know exactly where I’m going as the stores are all so big they always have a lot of stock in.  If I just wanted a stroll and a browse round the shops however, this would not be my first choice.


Westfields are basically shopping centres with loads of stores inside them.  I’ve grown up shopping in shopping malls so I guess that’s why I really like them.  I just find them convenient that everything is under one roof and they’re perfect for when the weather is a bit naff and you don’t want to keep running out onto the streets.  They also have nice restaurants here, a cinema, a bowling alley AND a casino so you don’t even need to go for the shopping!

I hope this was helpful and please let me know if you have any other London post requests! 

Lauren xx


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Wear | Life | Eats - Easter Special




Wear
I mentioned this product in my drugstore favourites video here and I just can't get enough of it recently.  It's the Sleek blusher in rose gold.  It's such a pretty sheer colour, so wearable, perfect for spring and summer.  You can build the colour up or just have a slight hint if you wanted more focus on the eyes or lips.  I love it for daytime and nighttime and best of all it's only £4.50!  Apparently it's a dupe for Nars orgasm so there you go.  When payday comes around this Friday I'll definitely be in Superdrug trying out some of the other colours.

Life
This weekend was the long 4 day bank holiday weekend and it was so so nice to have a break from the world and actually, London.  The weather was quite nice Friday so I went to Brighton for the day which is one of my favourite seaside towns to visit.  Saturday I did actually trek into London bcos I really wanted to see Lily Pebbles do her meet and greet at Westfield, Shepherd's Bush and it was a delight to meet her.  Sunday I was out in Essex for a friend's birthday.  We went to a bar/club place called The Brickyard which was really good.  They played great music and was open until 2am.  They also have a restaurant area which is meant to be nice, more 'fine dining' which I would like to try.  I'm finding a lot of places now are becoming restaurant/bar/club so as to cover all needs!  Monday I went into London again (so much for staying away!) and had a lovely oyster dinner at Sheekey.

Eats 
No surprise as to what I'm going to mention here... EASTER EGGS!  The one time of year it is socially acceptable to eat chocolate for breakfast, lunch AND dinner.  All day, everyday in fact. Okay, I may be getting a bit carried away now.  I got 3 eggs this year which is plenty to last me and fill my needs.  After that I plan on going back to a healthy eating routine.  I have bought the Honesty Healthy cookbook and am looking forward to cooking up some of their yummy but well balanced meals.


Our pet Shih Tzu going after my sister's easter eggs (she got more than me!)

Make sure you're subscribed to my Youtube channel to see my easter weekend lookbook going up tomorrow.  I hope you all had a good easter :)

Lauren xx

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Blog Photography: Working With Backgrounds

When taking photos for your blog it’s important to get the background right so that it makes the main feature stand-out.  It helps to pick a theme for the mood you are trying to create with the product.  A light or pretty background will enhance the look of a ‘happy’ product whereas a dark or plain background will make a product look more ‘sad’.  So here are a few backgrounds that I like to work with.

Light
The most important thing when taking any photo is probably to get the right lighting.  This can obviously prove hard sometimes because we don’t have natural sunlight 24/7 but we can fake it by getting a really bright light over the product or even a lampshade.  If I can I try to take my photos in natural sunlight and will sometimes put them on the window seal as I think this looks really affective.

White
White backgrounds are always great as they make anything stand-out.  Really simple but effective.  They also add a bit of light and nothing is going to get hidden or blended into the background.

Shelves
Putting products onto an empty shelf can look good as it almost gives a ‘shop floor’ look and can look quite professional if done correctly.  You want to make sure the shelves or the wall in the background doesn’t clash too badly with the product so it’s still the main focus of the photo.

Wrapping Paper
Laying products down on top of pretty wrapping paper can look good especially if it is a plain product that you are showing and you want to add a bit of colour and fun to the photo.

Magazines and Notepads
Following on from the wrapping paper, if you don’t have any you can always use any magazines or even notepads that are lying around.  I think it looks really cool and on trend to photograph products laying over the cover of Vogue or stacking a few magazines up and standing the products on top.  This is one of my favourite backgrounds.

Textures
Another way to brighten up a photo could be to place them on top of a funky scarf or rug.  I have a shaggy sheepskin rug at home which I like to take photos on.  It’s white so still makes colours stand out but it is a bit more fun than just a plain white wall.

Table Tops
I have grey marble table tops in my kitchen so if I want a more darker look perhaps if I have a rather light product I will photograph them on here.  It’s all about finding a background that will contrast and make your product stand out.

Props
This can be quite a hard one to work with as you don’t want them to overpower your product.  Sometimes you can edit the photo to blur the props out but this can take extra time so it depends how long you want to spend on it.  It can be nice as well if it ties in with the theme of the product you are displaying.  Candles work great as props!

So those are my tips, I hope they helped you.  I’m still far from satisfied with my photography skills but practise makes perfect and the important thing is just to work with what you’ve got.  Unfortunately most of us are not lucky enough to have a Pinterest worthy house!

Lauren xx


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Wear | Life | Eats




Wear
Now that the weather is finally starting to brighten up I've dug out my trusty Rayban wayferers and have been rocking them all over town.  I have them in shiny black so they pretty much go with every outfit and I think the wayferer frame suit my small face.  They also make me feel like a bit of a rock star when I wear them!  I got mine from Sunglasses Shop.

Life
I've really been enjoying watching Nashville recently.  I watched their first series and now we're about half way through the second.  It's a US show set in Nashville which is the capital of Tennessee and home of country music.  It's about country singers, some famous and others trying to make it in the business and all the dramas of their lives.  It stars the beautiful and talented Hayden Panettiere who plays the lead role as a famous and spoilt country singer.

Eats
Recently I have been eating a lot of sushi.  It's something that I've always wanted to 'get in to' as I've heard it's really good for you and really low carb which is something I always look for.  Usually anything that is healthy or low fat I don't really enjoy but I am absolutely obssessed with this stuff and can't get enough of it.  I'm a vegetarian and try to eat vegan where I can so I have been buying the vegetable snack pack variety from Tesco and it's amazing.  It's definitely my new lunch time buy; that, a banana with a bottle of water and I'm good to go.  Plus it's pretty cheap at only £1.35 for a small box.  




And with that I'm off to buy some sushi now!  I hope you all had a good weekend.  Don't forget to follow me on Instagram @wonky_lauren and vote for me as best newcomer in the Company style blogger awards, I would really appreciate it.

Lauren xx

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Top 5 Self Tans




So it's starting to get a bit warmer here in London which means we're wearing less clothing, which means we're showing more flesh WHICH MEANS.... we need to get our tan on!

Here are my favourite 5:


This is a lotion tan that I like to apply with a mitt.  It gives quite a dark colour so I mainly reserve it for nights out.  Although it's more of a high end tanner it lasts quite a long time.


This one is a moose so dead easy to apply and again I use a mitt.  I find it's not as dark as the Fake Bake one but gives a bit more of a golden natural tan.  I normally apply it before bed and then wash it off in the morning although be careful of your duvet as it can come off on the bed sheets.


Another one by St Tropez but this one is a moisturiser and so only gradually tans.  You can use it everyday to build up the desired colour and it does give a really nice golden glow like the original.  I like to take it on holiday with me and apply in the evenings to top up my tan as well as moisturise my skin after a long day in the sun.


This is a cheapy one from Superdrug but works just as good.  It comes in 3 different shades (light, medium and dark).  I apply this with a mitt and use it on days when I'm just going to work and want a bit of colour yet don't want to use the good stuff.  It does seem to come off in the shower so doesn't keep like the others but I don't mind for £7.


This is a spray tan so again really easy to apply and you won't get any orange hands!  It has a nice peachy smell too and dries pretty quickly.  The only thing I do find it that you only really get two coats out of it (that's full body) whereas the others you get a lot more.

Lauren xx

Wear | Life | Eats


Excuse the mess!

Wear
I've been loving wearing my red cut out ankle boots from Miss Selfridge recently.  I got them in the sale last year but you can get a similar pair here from Boohoo.  They're really comfortable and despite being red they do go with a lot.  I've got them on above with a black dress for work but I also like to wear them with straight skinny cigarette trousers. Or to wear them at the weekend with skinny jeans.  They've got a small heel too which I like because I do love wearing heels but they're not too high that I can't last all day in them.

Life
For the past few years now I've been quite an avid Hollyoaks fan and really haven't missed an episode in the last 5 or so years!  But recently I've been obssessed and can't wait to watch the next episode.  I generally Sky+ it and watch when I have time, normally getting a week or two behind but at the moment I'm right up to date bcos I just can't get enough! Sad, I know.  If you're looking for a good soap to get into or if the other ones are getting a bit boring you should definitely head over to 4oD and get watching!

Eats
I'm going to be honest straight away and confess that I am probably the world's worst cook.  Ever.  But I actually really enjoy it.  I love to eat fresh homemade meals and you'd never catch me eating a microwave meal.  I only cook for myself though as I couldn't possibly subject anyone else to my shockingly bad cullinary skills (or lack of!).  When I visited Croatia last year which I spoke about in this post I fell in love with a local delicacy called Burek.  Burek is basically puff pastry filled with either meat, cheese or vegetables. 




There's nothing quite like them in London so I thought I would have a go at making them myself.  I first attempted a simple spinach and feta one then I went onto tomatoe, mozzarella, pesto and mushrooms.  They're so easy to make.  I buy the ready rolled pastry, cut it into 8 sections, fill the sections with my ingrediants and then fold the pastry over to either make triangles or rectangles.  Then just pop them in the oven for 20 minutes.  And they actually didn't turn out too badly... for me!




Lauren xx

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Arbonne Perfecting Liquid Foundation Review

I was looking for a new foundation to try recently as my MAC studio sculpt is coming to an end and the Benefit oxygen wow I have is only a small bottle.  My friend then approached me and said she was a representative for a brand called Arbonne.  She said I would probably be interested in their products as they were chemical free, not tested on animals and vegan so she came over with them and showed me.

I had actually seen this foundation being hyped up by some of the Australian bloggers and seeing as I needed a new foundation I thought I would give it a try.

You get 30ml for £31 and it comes in a bottle with a pump which I really like.  They have a good array of colours and I went for the shade buff which is similar to MAC NC30.

You get quite a bit come out of the pump so I only used one pump for my whole face.  It went on really really smoothy (with moisturiser and primer underneath) and has such a good coverage.  I actually couldn't believe the coverage of this foundation because it doesn't feel or look heavy at all.  It has quite a matte finish and I set it with powder.

The only thing I did find is that it creased a bit in some places, mainly near the eye area, although that may have been my concealer.  I think next time I will try it without the powder as my skin is naturally quite dry.  Other than that I think it is a really good foundation and would definitely recommend.

If you are in the UK and you wanted to purchase this foundation or any of the other Arbonne products, please let me know and I can put you in touch with my friend who is a consultant.

Lauren xx

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Wear | Life | Eats


Wear
I've raved about this product A LOT in my blog recently and I'm going to rave about it some more because it's freakin awesome!!  It's the L'oreal Studio Supersize Spray.  I curl my hair and then I spray this in and scrunch my hair up and it just gives a real beachy, wave to it.  It lasts all night too which is good when you have long heavy hair like mine.

Life
I don't think I've spoken much about my work life or career on my blog but I'm studying law at the moment and this Friday saw me receiving my penultimate exam result which I passed.  It was in criminal law which I do really enjoy although I'm not sure whether I'd ever want to work in it.  I am so pleased to have passed though and I only have one exam left to pass now!

Eats
To celebrate my exam success my friend and I ate at Novikov Restaurant in Mayfair.  They have two restaurants (an Asian style one and an Italian style one).  We ate in the Asian restaurant as I love Asian food and it was soooo nice.  It was a tad pricey (£80+ for two people, no alcohol) but it's nice to do these things every now and again.  We had mushroom dim sum, tempura prawns, vegetable noodles, jasmine rice and roast duck.



Lauren xx

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