16 December 2013

Gwynedds - Loungewear to Love This Winter

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style

FashionFake, fashion blog, style blog, Gwynedds, casual style, casual outfit ideas, warm outfit idea, winter style
hat River Island // jumper and fur trim cardigan Urban Outfitters // detailed Bobba bottoms c/o Gwynedds // shoes New Look // necklace Primark

In this cold, miserable weather I find there is nothing better than getting into a pair of soft and most importantly warm bottoms. I have a couple of pairs that I choose around this time of year, and usually spend any time I have at home mooching around in them but then I discovered these Bobba pants from Gwynedds. Gwynedds (available at Minnie's Boutique) are known for their colourful loungewear and the individuality of the pieces - as every piece is handmade, no two items are ever the same.
In a pair of warm and comfy bottoms, I feel like there's nothing stopping a person. It's like that one perfectly fitted pair of jeans - once you find it, it's impossible to ever get out! And I love the colour of these pants, they brighten up my day in the gloomy rainy weather. This Christmas I will be lounging in my Bobba's with  the festive scented candles, endless cups of tea and seasonal TV... Yesssss....


4 December 2013

The Perfect Log Cabin Getaway

You  might have noticed that I have been a little MIA from FashionFake recently, well that is because I finally visited Scotland! Liam and I took a long weekend to relax and explore the surroundings of Galloway, including St Johns Town of Dalry, Castle Douglas and the wildlife around the log cabin which we stayed at. Cloud Cuckoo Lodge was exactly as expected: a cosy wood cabin with a log burner, tucked up just on the edge of the Galloway National Forest Park. The log cabin is literally in the middle of nowhere with the closest town 3 miles down the road - so if you're after peace, quiet and fresh air I'd strongly recommend staying there. The hosts, John and Lesley, were absolutely fantastic and so accommodating which made the experience even better - and they even provide a hamper to get you started with freshly bakes bread which was delish! The lodge has 3 bedrooms, two bathrooms, kitchen/dining area and a living room with a log burner making the lodge feel really cosy, especially in the colder months. The view from our bedroom window when we woke up and looked out were trees and mountains - it was great not to see presence of brick walls, masses of cables and other modern city devices. The pictures you see above of the scenery was right outside our door, and if explored further into the woods you can find even more beautiful photo ops. 

On the first day we walked to St Johns Town of Dalry after lunch, just 3 miles away from the lodge. There is a grocery shop where you can pick up any necessities like breakfast ingredients, batteries for the cameras/flashlights and other useful objects. Opposite the store is a pub which (I think Liam would agree) is 10/10 for food, atmosphere and service. It's called The Clachan Inn and serves top quality food, the staff are all very friendly and accommodating. It's decorated in a cosy, country style and reminds you somewhat of a hunting lodge. 

On the second day of our stay, we ventured to Castle Douglas (about 10 miles away from the lodge) which reminds me to warn you to absolutely have a car with you if you decide to visit Dalry because it's just so much easier to get around and explore different places. Castle Douglas is a bigger town with more options of food stores which include butchers and grocery stores, which means if you're a food pervert like me you'll immediately like the town, a supermarket, a small Boots where you can stock up on first aid equipment. I'm actually very happy to say that there were no casualties on this trip, not that I worried so much about Liam but I genuinely expected that at some point I will slip and fly off a cliff. I think I was safe as there were no cliffs around, only hills and cows and masses of sheep which still could have caused a catastrophic scenario. At the butchers, we picked up some fillet steaks and partridges which neither of us have had before but really wanted to try! I've eaten quail before and remember that to be quite nice so that's how imagined a partridge to be, and there were similarities but all I'd say is watch out for all the tiny bones all over! The steaks I couldn't fault (PS, Liam was doing all the cooking whilst I was being lazy with a glass of wine by the fire) and I think I've been spoilt into needing to get meat from the butchers now...luckily there's one two minutes away from where I live! It was such a relaxed evening to spent by the fire, and I think that's just how you feel overall when you're away in a place like this - just relaxed. 

Our third day was mostly spent at an activity center down the road from Dalry where we practiced archery and took a couple of kayaks out onto the lake. Suggestions were made about going on climbing things and wires and crap, but as someone who is catastrophically scared of heights (I've only recently started braving the 8th floor of buildings) I said I'd be the bag holder. Not that I wouldn't want to try it, last time I went tree running I got stuck on the third level and one of the chaperons had to come and get me, I will have a go at climbing again just not this time.
Archery was so much fun, I really enjoyed the level of concentration that goes into planning where your arrow is going to strike and how pleasing it is when you hit a target. I managed to get one arrow right in the middle of the target, whilst Liam was scoring quick points by hitting all the targets, which included the most difficult ones like a bottle balanced on top of a target. There's only one phrase for people like him: showoff, but with a cause :) 
Kayaking was a really relaxing experience, once I'd managed to push Liams kayak away from mine as there were threats being made about tipping my little kayak over. I don't think I would have cared much in the summer, but with freezing temperatures...nah thanks! We paddled into the middle of the lake and just sat and talked for a while. The lake was so still it was like a mirror image of the sky and the hills around us - it was beautiful and the photos don't even do it justice. That was one of my favourite parts of the trip. During our lake trip, we also saw something ridiculous - a hawk with a fish in its claws flying over our heads and next to him was a crow who was trying to steal the fish right out of his hands! 
It was a good day, and we even met two doggies at the activity center which was a huge bonus for me as I'm ever so slightly obsessed with dogs - a Jack Russel called Coco and a gorgeous Springer Spaniel called Spock.

We were supposed to leave on Monday, so we planned a chilled day visiting some near by walks, like the Kite Trail which Liam found. We'd been out on the planes near the lodge, and also drove out to a forest which was really cute until it got dark and I started to get a little freaked out - also if you got in the colder months bring wellies or proper hiking boots as the amount of times I stepped into bogs is unbelievable! My poor Converse... Yes guys, I wore Converse. I'm not even going to explain my choice of footwear here. 
We thought we'd have a lay in, go out on the trail and then come back to pack all our stuffs. Well, we found the trail but there was one specific viewpoint which sounded appealing so we went to find that and ended up somewhere up high on a hill in a place where I can only describe as a tree graveyard. I'm assuming this was the back of a factory which chops up trees to make logs, or to sell the wood on, but there was a clearing in the forest where the trees were just stumps. It was a weird atmosphere, I know people need wood and forests are kept alive by replanting trees, but just standing and looking at something like that was morbid. So we swiftly moved on and drove up to the lake where we kayaked to sit and watch the sunset - until we saw a sign for the viewpoint which we were looking for! It was an uphill climb and by the time we reached where we needed to be, it was dark. It was still a beautiful view and we heard the kites very close to us, so the climb was worth it. It was so late in the day that we decided to stay an extra night which Lesley and John kindly agreed to (thank you!). We spent the evening having dinner in the Clachan and then snuggled up by the fire with marshmallows. 

Scotland is such a beautiful place, the people are so friendly and the local produce is just delish. I would love to go back there sometime soon and I'd definitely stay in the Cloud Cuckoo Lodge again as it's just the perfect retreat. Before we left, I read some entries in the guest book and it's the cutest thing ever! Apparently there's a squirrel who comes to the garden, the only squirrel we found was the one in the photo who lives on top of the fridge and we named Simon - the creepiest looking squirrel. 

If you guys want to see more photos, pop by my Instagram account! Have you gone on a trip away recently? Where was it? 


29 November 2013

What's In My Makeup Bag: A Weekend Away

As some of you who follow me on Twitter will know, I've been away on a very long weekend away to Scotland and I've just got back from it! I asked you on Twitter if you guys would like to see what makeup and skincare products I will take with me on the trip and so many of you said yes - so here are my favourite picks!

This was my first weekend away with the new man in my life so as much as I wanted my skin to relax and get clearer in the fresh air, I also wanted it to look good. In my previous posts I mentioned that I'm really paranoid about my skin as I used to suffer with really aggressive acne when I was a little teen so any blemish or spot can now push me over the edge and make me really miserable. So, I picked natural and pure products to get the best of both worlds - allow my skin to breathe and get the smooth coverage which will make me feel happy and confident.

I'm absolutely in love with the Bare Minerals Pure Transformation Night Treatment and I know it's got mixed reviews as a lot of people raise concerns over coverage during the night BUT it's an absolute treat and doesn't damage my skin or clog my pores in any way. I love the fact that I can still have a little bit of coverage after taking my makeup off which is a massive bonus to anyone who is a little self conscious. To carry on with the mineral makeup theme, I took my Bare Mineral Original Foundation with me as it's a very light foundation which allows skin to breathe and doesn't clog up pores, as well as providing an almost airbrushed coverage. It's so quick and easy to apply, just buff it on with a brush (I use my Sigma F82 Round Kabuki*) and voila! Use a little bit of blusher on top, or if you're out walking all day just count on your cheeks getting rosy the natural way.

I think good and clear skin is the most important when going for the natural, minimal makeup look so once you've got that down it's up to you if you want to top up with mascara/lip stain or anything else. I used Premae Harmony Smoothie Serum as a moisturiser and primer as I find it's really good for my skin, creates a good base for foundations/BB's and smells delicious. To depuff my in-front-of-the-computer eyes I used Origins GinZing eye cream which is good, but I wouldn't rate it top of my eye cream list - it's quite shiny so it helps make eyes look brighter but to me it doesn't necessarily depuff eyes. But I'm using it at the moment anyway! And finish creating the bright eyed look by Phwoarr Paint - the holy grail of under eye concealer. For the price of your weekday lunch, this product is an absolute winner and I will recommend it to anyone.

I finished off the look with a coat of mascara just to elongate the lashes and I was happy that this makeup look will take me through the entire day. If you are planning a weekend away in the countryside, there is nothing better than having minimal makeup and also in a number of weather conditions the last thing you want is a face full of makeup which will make you look like a distressed panda by the end of the day.

What are your must have items for a weekend away? Is there a cult product you have to take every time?


19 November 2013

Panache Sports Bra Review

FashionFake, Panache Sport, sport bra, fitness blog, lifestyle blog, fashion blog
FashionFake, Panache Sport, sport bra, fitness blog, lifestyle blog, fashion blog

In this weeks Lazy Girls Guide To Getting and Staying Fit I wanted to talk to you guys about the right support when exercising on land (we covered swimming last week). I have worked in a luxury underwear store just after uni, so I know that right support is really important day to day, and when it comes to exercising. I have been ridiculous before and wore my daily bras to go running in and OK, lets face it I'm not exactly the shape of a Page 3 model - it's only recently I started looking more like a woman than a teenage boy in terms of my body shape! So I can get away with wearing less coverage items, however I am now converted to sports bras for exercise.

I really wanted to do this fitness thing properly and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review the Panache Sport bra which is what celebs like Abbey Clancey and Deborah Meaden wore during this seasons Strictly Come Dancing. The sport bras looked really comfy and stylish, there's a whole range of colours to choose from so you can ensure it goes well with your gym kit! The sizes come in a range of B to H cups, so if you've been blessed with a bigger bust you can get a pick too! I know a lot of bras stop at a certain size, mainly a DD and when I worked for the lingerie retailer I always had comments from ladies who couldn't find their size - I even had to get in touch with head office once to let them know of the huge demand for bigger sizes!

I was really looking forward to trying out the product and seeing if it makes a difference in comfort so during my next run I got my Panache on! At first it felt more like a sports top as it feels like a lot more coverage than my usual CK under garments so already I felt more comfortable to move around and not accidentally pop out. Of course I layered up to go out as I like running in the country side and enjoying the scenery (catch my running post next week in my series of Lazy Girls Guide To Getting and Staying Fit!), but I would have styled this bra (yes, you can still look stylish whilst getting fit) with a baggy vest top to keep you cool and covered. You can also do exercise which requires you to be upside down like pole fitness or gymnastics (I'm not a pro of either but I was curios so I did a headstand to see how the bra would feel) and it will keep your shape!

The Panache Sport bra gives you a great deal of support in terms of moving around and stops you from bouncing: does exactly what it says on the label really! I felt very comfortable whilst running and stretching about - but never restricted. The verdict on this product is that this is your best friend when it comes to exercising: in a variety of colours to choose from and technically adequate gives the Panache Sport bra major kudos from someone who wants to feel comfy and look good whilst working out. I also have to admit, I end up wearing it whilst I'm lounging around the house before going out running or popping to the gym!

Do you have a favourite brand of sport wear that you swear by for comfort and style?


17 November 2013

Hair Extensions at Pauls Hair World

Lauren Conrad hair, FashionFake, hair extensions, dip dye hair
Jessica Alba hair, FashionFake, hair extensions, dip dye hair
FashionFake, beauty blog, dip dye hair, hair extensions

When I was 17, I had the most unfortunate incident at a famous hair salon where my pride and joy, my long blonde locks, got chopped into a rather hideous bob after asking to have a "trim". My hair went from reaching my belly to barely touching my shoulders - can you imagine the horror, the tears and the pure rage I experience when the stylist decided to experiment with my hair and the first strand was chopped... It was horrifying. Just horrifying. So I absolutely had to get my hair back and the only way to do so was to embrace hair extensions. Ever since my first set of extensions, I have loved the concept - there are so many colours and styles to choose from, and if done properly or if you just fancy clip in extensions there is no damage to your hair.

I love finding out about the latest hair products and companies which offer solutions to different hair types and I was made aware of easy to use clip in hair extensions from Pauls Hair World. Clip in extensions are so easy to use and can be  worn when you need them like events and nights out and keep for ages because you don't have to constantly wash, condition and treat them. I have actually been thinking of investing in some clip in extensions because for some reason my hair has decided it will now stop growing, and I would like it to be a little longer than what it is now.

Another item which has been a hit in the hair world are the funky, dip dye hair extensions which match to your own hair and are perfect because a lot of people I know have opted for the dip dye trend which of course then limited them to buying hair extensions. Celebrities like Lauren Conrad, Jessica Alba, Drew Barrymore and Ciara have all jumped on the band wagon, as well as bloggers and trend watchers/enthusiasts.

Hair extensions are constantly on a fine line of looking amazing and tacky so take care when buying extensions and I would suggest invest in a good and trusted brand of fake hair to ensure you are looking more red carpet than road kill. Take care of your extensions and ensure they look healthy and nourished, and invest in a new pair if they start too look like rat tails.

What do you guys think of hair extensions? Would you wear them or do you prefer to go natural?

*This was a kindly sponsored post.


Fudge Urban Hair Chalk Review

FashioFake, Fudge Urban hair chalk, hair chalk, beauty blog, fashion blog
FashioFake, Fudge Urban hair chalk, hair chalk, beauty blog, fashion blog
FashioFake, Fudge Urban hair chalk, hair chalk, beauty blog, fashion blog
Fudge Urban hair chalks in Purple and White, both £5.99

I have always wanted to test out different hair colours like pastel pinks and purples, but never had the guts to try out dye as well as worrying about how a semi permanent bright hair colour would go down with the agency I worked with. I have thought about hair chalks for a while, but some of them come with warning that the chalks might stain light hair, so again I was a little bit of a coward when it came to trying them out. But when I spotted these Fudge Urban hair chalks in Superdrug, I decided to give them a go as hair chalks sounded like a perfect temporary solution.

The Fudge Urban hair chalks are easy to apply and when you get a bright colour, you can turn it into pastel by using the white chalk - so I picked up the purple and white chalks to create a pastel purple colour. After washing and styling hair how you want it, simply rub the chalk into strands of hair and rub in using fingertips. Remember to place a towel on your shoulders so the chalk that's flaking doesn't land on your clothes. I started with the purple and concentrated on the ombre in my hair, then I rubbed in the white chalk but left some strands brighter than the others to create different shades. Then spray some hairspray to lock in the chalk and you're ready! The colour lasts all night/day and doesn't come off if you sleep with the colour after you've locked it in with hairspray, however I haven't been caught in the rain with it yet so I cannot comment on that!

It's a great way to experiment with different hair colours and there are a variety of different chalks to choose from including pink, blue and red so everyone can have a pick. I really recommend this if you have a job which restricts you to how you look but you would like a more daring hair style for the weekend/festival or if you're not ready to commit to a brighter semi permanent hair colour.

Have you tried hair chalks before? What did you guys think?


11 November 2013

Healthy Self: Swimming

Lazy Girl Guide To Getting Fit: Swimming
All swimming costumes and goggles from Zoggs - shop online at www.zoggs.com

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned on Twitter that I had this idea of doing a series of posts on how to get fit  and keep fit on a budget and if you're a little bit like me - prefer to take easy ways out, especially when it comes to workouts. Although I am naturally slim (god bless fast metabolism) I would like to add some tone and definition to my body because I know it has the potential to be athletic if I just put the work in, and actually I feel really great after a hardcore workout, I just have troubles leaving the couch behind (especially during winter). So every Monday for the next three months I will be gracing you with a fitness related post whether it is an exercise post, a recipe or an accessory!

I'll start with something that everyone can enjoy in any weather without breaking the bank. We can already eliminate one excuse from indulging in this activity and that is weather. Most sport centers will have an indoor swimming pool and a sauna/steam room to enjoy after your workout. We can also push away the excuse of not having any "equipment" as the only things you'll need will be a swimming costume, a towel, a pair of goggles and if you have luscious locks - a swimming cap. Chlorine can damage hair by drying it out, and also turn your beautiful dye job into a rainbow from a horror film if you're a regular swimmer, so just make sure you protect your hair and wash it after a swimming session. You can wear any type of swimwear for a swimming session, but I would advise getting a well fitted swimming costume to avoid any "slips" or other mishaps - there is a great range of swimming costumes from Zoggs where you can find a style that you will like and that suits your body shape.

Anyone can enjoy swimming, from youngsters to the more mature populations and it doesn't matter if you're a beginner at water fitness or a pro swimmer because there's areas for everyone - just please stick to the shallow end if you're not a confident swimmer! I'm not great mainly because I hate putting my head underwater so I do laps but I stick my head up, don't question it - I've worked out how to do it! So just swim how you're comfortable swimming, or join a swimming group for beginners to get skills and confidence. There's a variety  of swimming groups like mother and baby, mature groups, beginners and different ability groups and it's a great way to get social as well as fit!

The NHS says that a 30 minute of moderate to intense swimming activity on 1+ days a week will count towards you recommended weekly activity, as well as having a number of benefits which includes not only getting toned but also general health like reducing the risk of a heart attack, stroke or type 2 diabetes.

Pros +: Swimming is a great way to tone every part of your body. When I do laps, I feel the burn in my stomach, legs and arms which are all parts of my body I want to concentrate on. It's great to do on a budget because a session costs around £3-4 and I am doing 2 sessions a week so that works out to £8, depending on your gym it might be more or less. Weather is not an excuse as most sport  centers will have an indoor swimming pool. It's also enjoyable with friends, a little bit of healthy competition and you can push each other to do better, then relax and have a catch up in the sauna!

Cons - : It can damage you hair unless you gear up with a swimming cap and conditioner, and unless you swimming costume covers the majority of your body you need to get prepped for a swimming session i.e ensure you're not channeling a gorilla before you turn up to the pool. Also, it still costs something so it could be beaten by other, free, activities.

Verdict: There's definitely more pros than cons for this fitness activity and in the winter the fact this activity is not weather dependent is a massive pro! I'll be doing 2 swimming sessions a week, are you guys on board? Did you enjoy my first post of the Lazy Girls Guide To Getting and Staying Fit series?

*This was a kindly sponsored post
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