5 Reasons Why I'm Excited For Warmer Weather

Now wasn't this weekend glorious!  25 degrees in London for a whole 5 days.  Aside from global warming, I'm not mad at it!  Here are my top 5 reasons why I'm so excited for more weather like this.

Tanned Skin

Whether you prefer to get a real tan or fake it like me, I use the warmer weather as an excuse to bronze myself up which always puts me in a good mood because personally I think life is just better with a tan.

Lighter Hair

Something about summer always makes me want to go lighter with my locks.  I've booked in to have my hair cut and highlighted this weekend and I can't wait.


Beer Gardens

Would I really be British if I didn't mention this?  Sitting in a beer garden with a cold drink on a hot day can often be better than being on a hot beach IMHO.  The buzz and atmosphere in London pubs when the weather is nice just can't be beaten, everyone is in a good mood!

Longer Evenings

In the winter I get home and I just want to snuggle up and go to bed, which is nice for a while but I feel so much more productive when it's still light outside.  I'll go to the gym, pop to the shops, clean the house, cook and all before 9pm!

Festival Season

Festival season is getting started and it's sooooo much better when the weather is warm.  I love listening to music outside with good food and drink but it's just not as fun when the weather is cold and rainy.


What are you top reasons for liking the warmer weather?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

How To Get Emily Ratajkowski's Bikini Body


There’s no denying that Emily Ratajkowski has one of the most enviable bikini bodies out there and with summer coming up we are probably wondering how we can get this body.  Now we may not be able to get her boobs but we can try and get the rest of her body with a bit of work!


Here are some of my favourite workouts and exercises to get toned and slim for summer:

  • HIIT (high intensity interval training) – this is a killer but I do a 30 minute session at the beginning of each week to motivate me and get me going for the rest of the week.  It really gets your heart going and you can definitely feel it the next day.  The class consists of different cardio and strengthening exercises which you do for 2 minutes before moving onto the next one.

  • Trampolining – I’ve only just started doing this class but it’s such a good workout for your legs and so much fun.  It’s only 45 minutes and you each have your own small trampoline rebounder.

  • Running and Cycling – whether it’s in the gym or outside these are one of the best exercise you can do for weight loss.  It’s actually also really good for toning the abs.  If you can’t afford a gym membership, this one’s for you.

  • Yoga and Hot Yoga – this is my favourite exercise at the moment and I do two classes per week.  I used to think yoga was just good for stretching but it’s good for so many things, including toning and your mental health.  Hot yoga is tougher because you’re doing it in 38-40 degree heat so better if you want more of a challenge.

  • Barre – there’s a reason ballerinas look so slim and strong.  This is another great one for the legs.

  • Step – this is a lot of fun and kind of dancey but I do find sometimes it’s hard to keep up with the movements.  Either way, you get a really good workout in whether you’re doing the correct steps or not!

  • Pilates – this class is amazing for getting those abs of steel but not as tough as yoga.  I’d recommend it to all levels.

  • Dance aerobics – this is basically like step but without the step so a bit easier.  If you love to dance you will love this class.

Will you give any of them a go?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

Meghan Markle's Maternity Style

Try saying that after a few glasses of prosecco!  Anyway, seeing as everyone seems to be pregnant at the moment I thought I would spread some inspiration from our leading lady.  Say what you want about her but there's no denying her maternity style is on point.  She still seems to look chic, graceful and elegant.  Maybe Kim K should take a leaf from Meghan's book!

Neutrals

Florals

Evening glam

Colour
She just nails every look.

What do you think of Meghan's maternity style?

Lauren xx

How To Look Chic On A Budget

There’s nothing better than bagging a bargain but there’s also nothing worse than wearing something that looks cheap and tacky.  So I think the goal we always work towards is looking chic but still on a budget.  Here’s how:

  1. Shop in the sales

Make a list of designer or pricey items that you want and then hold out until the sales start.  I love making wish lists on ASOS for some of their high end brands and then as soon as they go in the sale I’ll know because I can see them get reduced on my wish list!

Trousers by 2ndDay, bought in the sale on ASOS and worn with a Zara jumper

  1. Mix high end with low end

This one I learnt from my mum as a little girl.  You don’t need a full outfit of designer pieces to look chic.  Just one or two items will do and then team them with high street pieces and no one will ever know the whole outfit is not designer.

  1. Shop high end high street stores

There are some stores that sell a happy medium if you can afford it.  Not cheap but not too expensive either; French Connection, Whistles and All Saints are good examples and always have great sales too.

Skirt by Sisley, bought in the sale on ASOS and worn with a blouse from New Look

  1. Seek inspiration from Instagram and Pinterest

Check out celebrity and blogger’s designer looks on the web and then try to recreate them yourselves.  Online stores such as Missguided, Boohoo and Pretty Little Thing are great for making dupes of celebrity looks.

  1. Invest in the classics

Sometimes you do need to get a bit spendy but as long as it’s an item that you know you’ll wear forever it’s worth it because it will also last forever.  Items such as jeans, leather jackets and a good white shirt.

Sandra jumper bought as an investment piece and worn with YAS trousers from the ASOS sale

What are your tips for dressing chic on a budget?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

The Best Makeup Looks From Fashion Week


Fashion Week isn’t just about the clothes you know!  There is always some great makeup looks that I take inspiration from too.  Here are some of my favourites from February:

 
Blue eyebrows

Peach looks perfect for fall

Glitter eyes by Pat McGrath

No makeup makeup by Fendi


All images via Pinterest.

Which is your fave?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

Why I'm No Longer Vegan

I went vegan at the beginning of 2016.  I loved it and was so passionate about it.  I bought loads of vegan cookbooks, created Pinterest boards and followed loads of vegan bloggers on Instagram and YouTube.  I loved checking out vegan restaurants and of course shouting from the rooftops that I was vegan to anyone that would listen.  I was vegan and proud.

At that point in my life I was single, living by myself and so not really eating out that much. I cooked a lot at home which I really enjoyed.  Then in 2017 I met my boyfriend and although I'm not blaming him, I did start to eat out a lot more and started to get a bit bored with the small vegan options that were available.  This lead me to become a bit miserable with being vegan especially when it came to dessert because often there was never any vegan dessert on the menu and I LOVE dessert!

Towards the end of 2017 I started to hear a lot more 'rules' around veganism.  I heard that avocados were not vegan because they harm the bees?  I heard that you couldn't be vegan if you weren't zero waste?  I heard that you weren't truly vegan if you ate at a restaurant that served non vegan food. Then of course there's the whole giving up leather goods, products tested on animals etc etc and the whole thing just boggled my mind and I felt like I was never going to keep up with it.  Also, I was never going to give up avocados.  Ever.

So I was becoming more and more confused as well as miserable and finally this time last year after doing some research I decided I was no longer going to be fully vegan.  I saw there were people calling themselves 'practical vegans' which basically means you eat vegan 95% of the time but when circumstances arise where it is not possible to eat vegan, rather than go without you eat non vegan.

I was really nervous when I first came to this decision and worried what people would think. I felt like I had to keep justifying my decision but actually people were really happy for me and even excited that I could 'eat their food' again.

Recently I've seen a lot more people that were huge vegan icons go non vegan.  They have similar stories to me and also realise that perhaps being vegan isn't the healthiest option and it really doesn't work for everyone.  Although we are still able to get protein from plants our diets are very high in fibre and so this will then prevent our bodies from breaking down our food if we have too much fibre and therefore we won't benefit from any of the protein so it may actually be better to get protein from eggs or fish/meat.


I still don't eat meat or fish and probably never will.  I very rarely eat eggs unless they're in something like cake.  I still only buy dairy free milk and during the week all the meals that I prepare for myself and my boyfriend are plant based.  It is really only when I eat out that I am more relaxed and will have something with dairy or egg in it.

I don't want people to think I have jumped on this 'no longer vegan' trend.  I actually went non vegan a year ago but obviously all the people that have come out as non vegan this year has helped me in a way to also come out and not feel so ashamed about it.  What I don't appreciate is the other vegans that are now being nasty and rude to the non vegans for no longer being able to keep up this lifestyle.

I find it really judgmental and narrow minded, something I did not expect vegans to be like.  Everything has their own issues and what works for some people just doesn't work for others.  Just the way that some people have an intolerance to gluten or lactose and others don't.  We should be supporting each other not criticising in times of need.

Although I am not fully vegan anymore I still try as much as I can do make little changes:

  • I don't wear real fur
  • I don't buy exotic skins
  • Leather is something I am buying less of
  • I am aiming to buy more sustainable clothing
  • Now I have a garden I am planting more to offset my emissions
  • I recycle religiously
  • I donate to charity
  • I buy minimal plastic
There's so much more I want to try to do going forward but I can't be perfect, I can't be a superhero but I'm trying!  I think people doing even just one of these things is amazing.


Anyway, this is a lot longer post than anything I've written before (I think) but I just wanted to get my story out there too.

Please leave any questions below!

Lauren xx

Follow me here to see my new diet changes @wonky_lauren

How To Satisfy A Sweet Tooth The Healthy Way

The main reason a lot of us fall off the wagon when trying to eat healthier is because we have a sweet tooth and crave things such as chocolate, biscuits and ice cream.  We are also often put off by these healthy diets because they don't seem to have any treats in them and don't curb out cravings so we need to find alternative ways to satisfy these cravings whilst remaining healthy.

My favourite and easiest way to do this is fruit.  I know fruit can seem boring but there is generally at least a few pieces of fruit that people really like so stick to these.  My favourites are strawberries, bananas, dates, kiwis and mangos.

To make things more interesting you can blend your favorite fruits up into smoothies.  You can then add low fat or dairy free milk for added protein and cacao powder for added nutrients and chocolately taste!  I sometimes even add peanut butter to mine which is also high in protein.  This way I seem to get more fruit in and it just tastes like I'm drinking a milkshake!

Low fat jelly is also a good one to satisfy sweet cravings, you can even buy them ready made.  Also, low fat yogurts are a good one too.



Do you have any good tips for satisfying a sweet craving healthily?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

My Favourite Home Instagram Accounts To Follow

As I've mentioned before (probably more than once) we bought our first house last year and I am really excited to get into decorating it, putting our own stamp on it and really making it ours.  So obviously I've been pinning ideas on home boards and following inspirational accounts on Instagram and I thought I would share some of my favourites that I've recently discussed.


@scandanavianhomes

This account has nearly 1 million followers and it's not hard to see why.  A typical scandy account showing cosy greys, clean whites and lots of gorgeous wooden pieces.


@shnordic

Based in England.  This is another Scandinavian account because honestly anything they don't know about home style isn't worth knowing.  Everything is black and white with hints of tan and greenery which is my favourite look right now.


@hygge_for_home

Based in Wales.  This account is a little more dark and moody but still with a cosy feel.  She has the most beautiful rugs and throws and I just want them all!


@hutchinson.house

Based in Australia.  This is another mainly white interior account but with pops of tan so perfect for what I am trying to go for in my new home.


@anitayokota

Based in California.  This account has a real Moroccan feel to it.  There's also lots of vintage looking furniture and rugs without looking too much.



Who are your favourite home inspo accounts?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

The Oscars' Best Dressed 2019

Amandla Stenberg
Jessica Alba

Maria Menounos

Jennifer Lopez

Jennifer Hudson

Who was your best dressed at the Oscars this year?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

My Favourite Date Night Spots in London

I've lived in London my whole life and have eaten in many of the restaurants so I feel I can give a good idea of the best places to go.  I know Valentines/Galentines was last week but should it really be just for one day?  I think not!

Here are some of the places I've tried recently and highly rate:


Timmy Greens in Victoria

This place is great for both brunch and evening.  They are mostly known for their sister restaurant Daisy Green but this is the newest one of the chain.  I went for the smashed avocado on charcoal toast with cashew cream cheese.  This was the perfect balance of healthy and indulgent.




Plume of Feathers in Greenwich

This is a pub so we went on a Sunday for a roast dinner.  You have to book and they have set times to eat so the food comes out pretty fast.  It was really good though.  I had the veggie roast (one of the best I've ever had!) and the sticky toffee pudding for dessert.




Cut and Grind Burgers in Kings Cross

If you're a burger lover, this one's for you!  Very reasonably priced, you can pick which style of meat you want or they also have chicken, veggie and vegan options.  The milkshakes are amazing too.  This one is the Oreo one.




Mildreds in Soho

This is a great little veggie/vegan chain, also perfect for brunch.  I went for eggs Florentine and a mimosa!




The Bike Shed in Shoreditch

Yep another burger place, I am a self confessed burger lover!  This place is a bit off the beaten track and they actually have a bike club at the back so you constantly see bikers riding past your table which is cool (and loud!).  They have a great selection of veggie options and I went for the goats cheese and mushroom burger with prosecco.




Do you have any London date night recommendations?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

3 Day Date Outfits

As I've gotten older I am much more preferring to have day dates than evening dates, whether this be with my boyfriend or my friends.  Choosing instead to go for brunch or a Sunday roast and then chilling in the evening watching Netflix and eating snacks!  Who else is with me?

Just because you're not going out in the evening though doesn't mean you can't still dress up.  It might just be a different kind of dress up.  Here are my three favourite day date looks I've been wearing on repeat recently:

Skirt from YAS

Dress from ASOS

Shorts from Boohoo

What are your favourite day date outfits?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

How To Style Skinny Jeans

Just throwing it out there but I think skinny jeans are probably the number one most worn and possibly most popular item of clothing, right?

I think it's because they're such a classic versatile piece that can be dressed up or down and really do go with everything.  That said, there are so many ways to style them.  Here are some of my favourites:

Jeans: Zara

Jeans: Zara

Jeans: Sainsburys

Jeans: John Lewis

How do you style your skinny jeans?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

How To Shift Your Mindset And Reach Your Fitness Goals

January is finally over (did that month last forever or what?!), the month we all sign up to the gym and fitness classes, convince ourselves that this is the year we are going to get fit and healthy, no excuses but then February comes around and we are struggling to keep motivated and stick to our fitness goals.

We are all guilty of this, myself included but all you need to do is try to shift your mindset.  Here are the easiest ways I have found to do this:



1. Try not to feel guilty if you do start to slack.  We all need a break from it sometimes and often when we push ourselves too hard we start to slack off and then feel really guilty.  Feeling guilty is not going to help, you need to just look at it as an 'off day' and then start over the next day but don't feel bad about it.

2. Set attainable and realistic goals.  If you are pushing yourself too hard and setting goals you are going to struggle to reach then you are destined to fail.  Start slowly and ease yourself into it, increasing your goals as you go.  They will be easier to reach leaving you feeling better about yourself and more motivated to keep going.

3. Be positive.  Positive thinking always help to reach our goals and fitness goals are no different.  Tell yourself that you can do it and don't get disheartened if you don't see results straight away.  It takes around 12 weeks for you to see a real difference in yourself.



What are your tips for reaching your fitness goals?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

The Best Fashion Trainers Out Right Now

The last few years have seen people wearing trainers over heals a lot more and I am definitely okay with this.  Perhaps with the exception of ankle boots because these will always be my first loves.

Last year in particular the trend of chunky 'dad trainers' came out with Balenciaga leading the way. I've rounded up my favourites below.

Fila 

Balenciaga

Chanel

Gucci

Topshop

How do you feel about the dad trainer trend?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

Double Standards At The Super Bowl

So do you remember back in 2004 when Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson played the half time slot at the Super Bowl?  Maybe not if you're too young but you must have heard about the #NippleGate incident?  

Basically Justin Timberlake "accidentally" flashed Janet's boob by pulling down her top which he claims was supposed to have a bra underneath.  There was then a huge outrage amongst viewers which led to Janet being banned from most major music channels and radio stations.  Justin, however, got off scot free.

Image via Vanity Fair
Anyone then watching Adam Levine's Super Bowl half time performance this year would have noticed that during this performance he pulled off his [own] t-shirt revealing BOTH of his nipples.  Noone battered an eyelid and everyone cheered because he is a white man and so it's perfectly acceptable for him to do that?

But why is it that Janet as a black female should be banned from showing her nipple (which was actually done by a white male) but a white man can show both of his nipples and there be no repercussions?  Talk about double standards.

Image via Esquire
Janet has been treated so badly since this incident, she wasn't even invited to watch any of the Super Bowls since despite Justin Timberlake being invited to them all.  She has also been a laughing stock in the music industry hence why she seems to have pretty much retired since then.

I personally don't feel this is far and can't believe we STILL live in a world that has differing standards for men and women.  However, this is just my opinion so please don't take offence.  I would love to her your views on this matter?

What do you think?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren

The Most In-Demand Skill of 2019




According to LinkedIn, the most in-demand skill of 2019 is creativity.  I personally think this is because of how technologically advanced we are now.  With bloggers and Youtubers and online business, creativity is key.  So how do you become more creative?

I get it, some people are just naturally more creative than others but we all suffer from ‘writer’s block’ or ‘lack of inspiration’ from time to time so here are some of my tips I have picked up doing research along the way on the topic of how to keep those creative juices flowing!

  1. Speak to those around you that inspire you.  I’m not saying to copy people but have a chat with those you know that are creative and see what inspires and works for them.  It may work for you too.  I also love using Twitter to see what others are writing about for inspiration.  Just like I did with this post after reading a post by LinkedIn on creativity.

  1. Keep a notebook handy.  Sometimes out of nowhere you will just be inspired by something and have lots of creative ideas so make sure you have somewhere to write them down until you can use them properly.  I love using the notepad app on my phone to write down new blog post titles on subjects I want to talk about.

  1. Stop procrastinating.  I know this is probably obvious and you’ve heard it so many times before but sometimes you need to stop putting things off and just give it a go.  You never know how well it will turn out.  Even if you just do a rough draft or outline of what you want to achieve you can always come back to it and add to it over time when you’re feeling more creative.  So do it now!

  1. Experiment.  This kind of ties in with what I say above about not knowing how good something can be until you try it.  You want to create something that stands out and isn’t the same as the rest so experiment with different ideas and see how they turn out.

  1. Learn something new.  If you really completely run out of new ideas then why not try learning something new?  A new skill?  A new exercise?  Recipe?  Anything!  Not only will it inspire you but it will also open up a whole avenue of new discussions on your chosen new topic.



How do you keep creative?

Lauren xx

Follow me here @wonky_lauren