Clear Braces

Not exactly a glamorous subject but having nice straight teeth is.  

It's something that I've thought about for ages.  When I was younger a lot of my friends had 'train track' braces including my sister but I never did.  My dentist never said that I needed them until I was 16 when all my friends had theirs off so I declined because I didn't want to be the only one with braces until I was like 18/19.  

I must admit I kind of regret not having them now because I would have got them free on the NHS but never mind I think at the time it was the right decision for me and a lot of my friends were not happy with the results of their NHS braces anyway.

I'm now looking into getting clear braces because they are much more attractive (if you can even call braces attractive) than the old 'train tracks' or retainers and apparently you can barely notice them.  The brand I was looking at are called Invisalign and although they are pricey I don't mind paying it if I know it's going to give a good result.

Once I have nice straight teeth I may consider getting them laser whitened but I don't know how long that lasts?  It's something I need to look into in more detail.




Does anyone have good recommendations for clear braces or teeth whitening?

Lauren xx

Wear | Life | Eats

Not a great deal has happened this past week but the weekend was busy as ever though so here is my WLE.

Wear
It was my friend's 30th birthday at the weekend and she celebrated at a local pub in Brixton in a beer garden as the weather was perfect for it.  I wanted to dress up because it was her birthday but at the same time it was only a pub garden so didn't want to go too over the top.  So I decided on this maxi skirt that I got from Topshop when I saw Ashley Madekwe wearing it who is one of my style icons and I teamed it with a crop top from Primark and little sandals.



Life
The pub garden was HUGE I couldn't actually believe it because from the front the pub looks so small and in a residential area which is why the shut the garden at 1030pm but it's still nice to sit in during the day.  You get a real mix of people there and it's full of picnic benches for all to sit on which gets you chatting to lots of new people.  If you live around the Brixton area and you like a good beer garden I would definitely check out The Duke of Edinburgh if you haven't already.

Eats
The pub sold good old pub grub and even had a bar outside serving food until about 10pm. I didn't try any because I'd already eaten but it did look really tasty and fresh.  I think it would be nice to eat there if you'd been there all day and was hungry.  We didn't get there till about 8pm so had already had dinner.  The prices weren't too bad either.

I do love a good beer garden and pub grub.  Can you recommend any good ones in the London area?

Lauren xx

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Topshop Make-Up: Hit or Miss?

If you read my last post you will see that I have been doing a bit of research into new make-up brands.  My last post looked at high end Charlotte Tilbury make-up so I thought this post should feature more affordable drug store make-up.  Okay, so Topshop isn’t a drug store as such but it falls in the ‘affordable make-up’ category as far as I’m concerned.

When I first heard that Topshop were launching make-up products I was a bit dubious.  I’m never quite sure when a company that specialists in one thing then tries to come out with something else.  However, I’ve heard a lot of hype about their make-up since then and when I’ve seen it in store there’s lots of bright colours which definitely gets a thumbs up from me.

Bronzers
First up is bronzers, these are new to the Topshop range and there is both a matte one and a shimmery highlighter one.  The matte one looks like it would be really good for contouring and I definitely want to purchase it.  The highlighter looks pretty also and ideal for a summer glow.

Lipsticks
The lipsticks look really fun and they have lots of bright colours to choose from which is perfect for this time of year or any time really.  I love wearing a bright lip but they also have more muted down ones if you are not that daring.  They are a really reasonable price and I love the cute packaging.

Blushers
The blushers also come in an array of bright colours and also come in a cream format which I’m dying to try.  They are supposed to be super pigmented and have a really good colour pay off but if you’re not into anything too bright I think you can tone the cream ones down depending on how much product you use.

So those are my Topshop finds.  What do you think about Topshop make-up?

Lauren xx


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A Closer Look at Charlotte Tilbury Make-Up

I must admit I didn't really know much about Charlotte Tilbury until I saw Millie Mackintosh wearing her make-up.  And then obviously I was obsessed.

Millie has the best skin and it always looks so radiant and flawless.  I find it a lot more trustworthy to listen to opinions of someone who you can clearly see that the product works for rather than someone just raving about it because they're being sponsored.

I haven't purchased any of her products yet but I want to so I did a little research on her website to see what was in store and thought I would share my findings...

Beach Sticks
The first product I was drawn to were the beach sticks and these come in bronze and blushes or you can get both in a kit.  These are cream formula blushes/bronzers that seem to glide onto the skin for a bit of colour and dewy finish.  My favourite is Ed Vedra which is a bright orangey red.

Liquid Eyeliner Pencil
Next are these eyeliner pencils that are apparently liquid.  I'm not sure how that works but it sounds pretty cool and the title suggests that they are iconic too?  I think I also like them just because they're called Rock n Kohl haha.

Eyeshadow Palettes
Then we have the luxury palettes which are sooooooo pretty and I just want all of them. Except they cost £38 so definitely can't afford all 8!  They do some lovely neutral colours and then also some jazzy purple and green palettes.

Eyeshadow Pencil
Next are these chubby pencils that have a creamy eyeshadow in them.  Quite self explanatory and pretty easy to use for a quick swipe of colour and blended out.  An effortless finish I reckon.  They also come in lots of lovely neutral colours, dark pearl being my fave.  They remind me of the By Terry shadow sticks.

Brow Lift
Then we have this product which looks a lot like the Anastasia Brow Wiz.  It has a spooly one end, pencil the other and also a retractable brush for smudging.  Handy.  They even have one called Cara D and well if it gave me eyebrows like hers then I'm sold.

Foundation
Last but not least we have the Light Wonder foundation.  This is a product I have seen Millie post on her instagram and gives her that amazing glow to the skin.  So if it's good enough for Millie then it's good enough for me!  It claims to be light weight and youth boosting.  Worth a try I reckon!

Have you tried any of the Charlotte Tilbury make-up range?

Lauren xx

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Wear Life Eats: Lovebox Festival

Another WLE festival edition!  I'm really getting into my festivals this year.  Probably more so because the weather has been nice.  I'm not an outdoorsy person at all when it's rainy and miserable, I just can't hack it!

So Friday I attended Lovebox at Victoria Park and here's how it went...

Wear

The weather was absolutely boiling on Friday.  I think it got to about 32 degrees which is insane for London. So I opted for a cute playsuit because I thought it would be both cool and comfortable.  The one I wore is from Primark and was actually in their beach wear section..  I thought it was really nice though and wear it out all the time.  I teamed it with my Hunters again (any excuse to wear them!) even though it was a bit too hot and also this floppy hat from Next which is great for sunny days to keep the sun off my face. Check my Instagram for pics @wonky_lauren

Life

So music wise we got to see Sigma, Hannah Wants, Katy B, Duke Dumont and Chase & Status.  I also wanted to see ASAP Rocky and Annie Mac but they clashed with other artists. Hannah Wants was my favourite.  I'm absolutely loving her at the moment and this was actually the third time in a month I'd seen her #stalker!  If you haven't checked her out already though you must.  Katy B gave a really good live performance and Chase & Status smashed it.  All round it was a really good day.

Eats

I get rather excited for food at festivals as it goes.  There is always such a good selection and you can pretty much find any type of food you fancy, even if you're really fussy or have lots of allergies.  We went for a wrap and I had halloumi cheese in mine.  The guy asked if I wanted chilli sauce or garlic sauce so I opted for chilli and OMG it blew my mouth off!!  If that's possible... It was so spicy haha.  I managed to wipe a lot of the sauce away though and it was alright.  Definitely won't be trying that again though!

I hope you all had a good weekend and enjoyed the sunshine.

Lauren xx

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Me, Myself & Make-Up

We’re going back in time for today’s post to look at how make-up trends have changed over the years and my own relationship with make-up.

Funnily enough I was never a great lover of make-up.  It never really excited me and I never found myself always wanting to buy new stuff when I went out.  My make-up bag was never overfull and I didn’t have much of a clue how to apply it. 

I don’t think I was ever desperate to wear make-up when I was little.  I think maybe I was more of a tomboy!  I think I first got into make-up when I was about 14 and started to go to under 18 discos (remember them?!).  I used to borrow a bit of my mum’s make-up and then throw on a tonne of glitter.  I remember wearing lilac eyeshadow to match my lilac outfit.  Something I would never do now bcos I hate anything that’s ‘matchy matchy’.

I think I properly started to wear make-up when I was 16 and I got my first part-time job.  I went to an all girl secondary school so never felt the need for make-up before that and I’ve always had pretty good skin.  When I did start to wear it properly I kept it very minimal.  Only mascara, eyeliner, bronzer and blusher.  Except I used to apply the bronzer all over my face and looked pretty orange!

In fact, it has only really been the last two years that I started wearing more and I changed this routine learning how to properly apply make-up thanks to YouTube!  Now I’m absolutely obsessed and can’t get enough it the stuff.  Every payday I rush to Boots and easily spend about £100 on make-up and skincare (mainly make-up!)

So that's my beauty story. Some key moments that really stick out for me along the way. Beauty is such a small part of people's lives but for some of us, it's one of the most enjoyable.  I don't mind if that sounds sad and I'm happy I let myself become obsessed with it all because it's nice to feel passionate about something, no matter what it is. 

Lauren xx


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Different Kinds of Eyeliner

To some of you this may be a really obvious post but to those of you that are new to make-up like I was about a year ago then this might give you a few tips on which eyeliner will work best for you.

Starting off with the basics, you have kohl liner.  This comes in a pencil form and the product inside is a dry, soft and smudgeable texture that works really well on the waterline and tightline.  This is probably the easiest most simple eyeliner to start with if you're new and works well with a smokey eye even if you're rubbish at them because you can just smudge it altogether and no-one will know you started with a really wonky line! My favourite is this one by Bourjois.

Next up is liquid liner.  This is the one that creates that lovely winged flick on top of the eyelid that we all strive to get perfect.  Not always best for beginning unless you have a steady hand.  You can get a felt tip type one too which is sometimes a bit steadier but beware if the tip is rather large and you only want a thin line.  My favourites are Benefit and Barry M.

Then we have the very trendy gel liners.  These usually come in little pots with an angled brush.  Some people prefer them to the liquid liners as they say they are more black and easier to control.  Others find them harder so I think you just have to play around and see what works for you.  They are also meant to last the longest.  My favourite is from Bobbi Brown.

Lastly we have the powder form.  I'm not sure if this is really classed as an eyeliner but I've seen it used before as a pretty cool trick and is so easy to apply.  You basically take a black eyeshadow or whatever colour you want to use for your eyeliner and dip an angle brush in.  You then make the line as you normally would but it comes out lighter so easy to rub off if it goes wrong and then you just build the intensity up.  You can also use it over gel or liquid to set it in place.  My favourite is MAC eyeshadow in carbon.

Which is your favourite kind of eyeliner?

Lauren xx

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Wear | Life | Eats

Wear

This weekend was an old friend of mine's birthday and we went to a club in Leicester Square called The Penthouse.  I have been here before but only to the nightclub part, it has incredible views across London. They also have a comedy club in there which we went to first.  Comedy clubs are not usually my thing but it was actually really good and one comedian in particular called Zoe was awesome.  You can find out more about the club here.

As we were going to the nightclub bit afterwards I wanted to wear something quite dressy so I went for this really cute playsuit from Missguided.  I think Missguided is great for little playsuits and this one went perfectly with my Kurt Geiger wedges.




Life

If you read my last blog post (How to be successful) you will know that I had a job interview last week. Anyway, I got the job!  I am so so happy because this really will take my career in the direction I want it to go and means that all that studying I have been doing the last few years will finally pay off.  So I will hopefully be starting that next month.  I'm quite nervous but I think it will be worth it in the long run because it's something that I really want to do.

Eats

Last week my friend and I visited Roka restaurant in Canary Wharf.  I'm obsessed with Asian food and I think it's starting to overtake my top favourite Italian food.  Maybe. Anyway, I'd never been here before and had heard good things about it and now I know why.  The food was amazing!  And the desserts were really yummy too (see picture below).  They all had a good collection of cocktails and the service was excellent considering how busy it was.  I'm not sure if I like it as much as Novikov though and I think I may be going there this week to celebrate :)




I hope you all had a good weekend.  Lauren xx

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How To Be Successful: Staying Motivated and Positive



A slightly different post today from the usual beauty babble.  I’m not even sure where I’m going with this or what I want to title it but I have a job interview today for a job that will hopefully really take my career off and into the right direction.  And it just got me thinking that it’s so important to keep pushing yourself, stay motivated and positive and hold onto the hope that you can achieve your dreams if you just believe and don’t give up.

I was never really that clever at school, maybe slightly above average and I certainly didn’t know what I wanted to do when I left.  So I left school at 18 with a couple of A-Levels and went straight into full time work.  But some how I have managed to achieve a lot at quite a young age because I worked hard and was determined to be successful and sometimes I think that is more important than any qualification.

So what I’m trying to say is don’t give up on your dreams.  Ever.  Don’t think that just because you’re not that clever, or you don’t have enough money to afford a good education that you can’t make something of yourself because you can.  I promise you.  You have to believe in yourself, even if no-one else does because eventually they will as it will start to show through your attitude and outlook you have.

I’m really into philosophy and sometimes I’ll have a little read when I’m feeling low or de-motivated just to give me the lift that I need to stay on track.  Here are a few of my favourite quotes:

If your dreams don’t scare you they’re not big enough

Don’t settle.  Don’t finish crappy books.  If you don’t like the menu, leave the restaurant.  If you’re not on the right path, get off it.

Remember why you started.

You only live once.  (cheesy but true!)

I’m going to succeed because I’m crazy enough to think I can.

The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it.

Always believe something amazing is about to happen.

Everything happens for a reason.

Lauren xx


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Are Your Legs Shorts Ready?




Yay for more summery posts!  I can’t believe the sun has still got his hat on here in the UK.  The weekend was a bit misog but during the weeks have been nice and bright and I hear we’re in for a 2 week heatwave!

So that means we must make the most of the weather and get our legs out but for most of us this can be pretty daunting especially if we’re not ‘shorts ready’.  Here are a few little tips I wanted to share with you on how I prepare my legs for the warmer weather.

Firstly in the shower I like to exfoliate.  This is going to get rid of any dry patches of skin, any old fake tan, unclog any ingrown hairs and make your legs nice and smooth.

Secondly I take my razor blade and de-hair my legs.  Not the most glamorous thing to talk about but needs must!  I usually just buy the Bic disposable ones and the shaving cream that goes with it and that does a good enough job for me.  If my legs are particularly hairy if we are just coming out of winter and I’ve been hiding them in tights for 6 months then I might buy a Veet wax kit and wax them.  This also helps with future shaving as they don’t grow back as fast or as thick.

Then after I get out the shower and have completely dried off I go in with my fake tan.  I prefer to use lotion tans such as Fake Bake or Superdrug Solait with a mitt to apply it over my body using circular motions.  I normally top up my tan every 3 days.

On the days in between fake tanning I will use a moisturiser to keep my tan and also keep any dry patches at bay and just keep my legs soft and smooth in general.  Sometimes I use one with a gradual tanner in it or sometimes I just use a regular one.  At the moment I’m swapping between St Tropez Everyday and Victoria Beckham’s one that came with her perfume set because it smells really lovely.

How do you like to keep your legs prepared for summer?

Lauren xx


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Wear | Life | Eats: British Summer Time Festival

This Saturday I attended the BST Festival at Hyde Park with headline acts such as The Enemy, The Pogues and The Libertines.  Here is my WLE write up...

Wear
The weather had been so hot and sunny all week and then it got to the weekend and was windy and rainy. Typical.  It wasn't too bad actually, it probably rained for about half an hour when we were there but it gave me an excuse to rock out the Hunter wellies.  I teamed these with a black pinafore from New Look (the children's section), a cream lace top from Next and a rain mac from H&M (not shown).  I only really wore the mac at the end because it was quite warm for most of the day.  I think this outfit was super cute for a festival and if I was brave enough I may have put flowers in my hair!




Life
I don't think I've ever spoken about my love for Pete Doherty on here before but I am absolutely OBSESSED with the guy.  I know a lot of people don't like him and that's their opinion but I've fan girled him since I was at school.  I've got all his albums and read all his books.  He's actually a really talented person and really intelligent.  He went to university and writes all his own music.  I have a book of a collection of his poems.  He's a very deep character and really gentle but he's also a troubled soul.  I think he has cleaned up his act a lot and he seemed a lot better when I saw him perform.  The Libertines' performance was absolutely amazing, I can't even get over how good they were.  The whole day was just awesome but that performance really was the icing on the cake for one of the best days of my life so far :)  




Eats
I'm quite a fussy eater but fortunately festivals nowadays seem to cater for everyone. They had tonnes of stalls with meat, veggie, vegan, gluten free, dairy free and healthy options available.  I didn't even know where to start!  I seemed to go a bit backwards and had the yummiest brownie I have had in my life when I first got there.  It was gooey at the bottom with salted caramel running through the middle.  Then a bit later I had a falafel wrap.

Did anyone else attend any of the BST days?

Lauren xx

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MAC Ruby Woo - Worth The Hype?

Ruby Woo by MAC is a cult red lipstick that pretty much everyone in the beauty world owns.  I, however, was a bit late to the party on this one.  I love the look of the colour but because of the matte finish I wasn't sure if it would be too much hard work to keep looking fresh and luscious.  And I'm not a fan of hard work when it comes to make-up.

Anyway, on my recent trip to Ibiza I decided to purchase this lipstick at the airport.  I tried it out one night when I was out there and I did really like it.  It's such a lovely vibrant colour but you have to make sure you don't have any dry patches on your lip and apply a generous amount because other wise you get those cracks showing up... you know what I mean.

I think it would also be best applied with a lip liner which I didn't have with me whilst travelling.  I did have another lipstick called Poppy by Marks and Spencer.  This is a bright red colour but is a bit more creamy and so I layed them together and actually it worked really well.


So that's my trick to pulling off Ruby Woo.  What's yours?

Lauren xx

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Quick and Easy Healthy Summer Recipes

Here are a few recipes I have been rustling up lately and thoroughly enjoying.

Simple Stir Fry

This is really very easy to make, especially if you buy one of the stir fry package deals they do in Tesco and Sainsburys.  I also have a wok which I find much easily to use as it's rather large but you can also use a frying pan.  

I like to throw my vegetables in first, I normally go for the mushroom mix as mushrooms are my fave, then after 2 minutes I throw in the noodles, the rice ones are my favourite. Then after another 2 minutes I add the sauce and I like to mix it up here as they have a variety of flavours to choose from.  Then after about a minute it should be ready.  So simple and soooooooo delicious!  Just remember to keep stiring the whole time ;)




Broadbean and Sweetcorn Frittatas with Feta and Rocket Salad

These are super healthy but filling at the same time.  You make an egg, milk and flour mixture and then when it starts to make a doughy texture you add in the sweetcorns and broadbeans and then fry them in some Frylite each side for about 5-10 minutes each and you're done.  Then just add some rocket and feta or whatever salad you want.  I like a lot of feta!




Courgetti with Tofu

I think I've talked about this one on here before.  I got a bit obessed with it and was having it every evening at one point!  It's so good and tastes just like pasta.  I bought a Julienne peeler to make my courgetti and then added it to the wok with a little Frylite.  I also added in some tofu but you can add whatever you like, meat, fish etc.  After it had cooked (about 5 minutes) I added some pesto sauce and enjoyed.




Let me know if you decide to make any of them and send me your photos on Twitter or Instagram @wonky_lauren

Enjoy!


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