Wednesday, 31 October 2018

What I Watched On The Flights To And From Florida


movies to rent now

One of my favourite things about flying is the fact that I can watch lots of recently released movies without having to buy them on DVD or having to pay to rent them. With a 9 hour outbound and 7 hour return flight I was able to fit in quite a few movies and it kept me more than occupied until touchdown.

I actually did quite a bit of prep before boarding my initial flight by first checking the list of movies that would be available on Virgin Atlantic's entertainment system. I then took a note of some potential picks, watching the trailers for them on YouTube and finally took a note of them in my phone. I normally get quite overwhelmed when I first start up the entertainment system on planes and miss out on some great movies whilst I inevitably watch episodes of a TV show that I've already seen about a hundred times so this year I came with a plan and pretty much stuck to it.

So here's what I watched on the flights to and from Orlando, Florida in the exact order that I watched them;

Game Night

Game Night was the movie that I was the most excited to see on the plane and it did not disappoint. I actually ended up getting many strange looks from both my family and complete strangers whilst I was watching this, solely because of how much I was laughing.

I'm very much here for Jason Bateman's kind of humour and I always find myself drawn to comedies that he's in and that's exactly what happened with Game Night. There were so many great laugh out loud moments and the story had me hooked from the very beginning. I'm also a big fan of Rachel McAdams and it was great to see her return to the comedy genre. The ensemble cast were also really good and I enjoyed Game Night that much that I just had to buy it on DVD when I got back, which is definitely a marker of how much I enjoyed it, especially as I don't think that I would buy any of the other movies in today's post. Some, however, I would definitely watch again if they were to appear on Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, so let's see what I thought of the rest of my plane picks.

Blockers

After spending the first two hours of the flight laughing, I decided to put on the second movie that had really caught my eye whilst planning what to watch a few days earlier and that was Blockers. It seems to be a bit of a tradition that I watch at least one movie with Leslie Mann in it on a flight, having watched How To Be Single, The Other Woman and This Is 40 on my last trips abroad. And I've got to say, it was another enjoyable movie to watch whilst 30,000 feet in the air.

Like Jason Bateman, I'm a big fan of Ike Barinholtz's brand of humour, even though he'll always be Morgan Tookers from The Mindy Project for me and he had some great one liners and funny scenes in this as did John Cena, who I also enjoyed seeing in Sisters and Trainwreck previously. Seeing an American prom night from a different perspective felt fresh and so much more relatable than the likes of American Pie etc. The teenage cast played it well but you're also more than happy to follow the parents along as they attempt to intercept them at various stages of their night. I'd definitely and happily watch it again and it did keep me entertained for another few hours.

Breaking In

I remember seeing the trailer for this movie one night whilst I was scrolling through Twitter and I instantly marked it as something that I would have to see, so when I saw that it would be on the flight I made sure to press play just as the cabin crew came through with mini Twister ice lollies. It felt like perfect timing as I was expecting it to be a Panic Room-esque kind of home invasion style popcorn movie and in many ways it was but I couldn't help but feel a little bit let down from what the trailer had set me up for.

So much of it felt like something I'd seen before and there weren't really any surprises or twists that I wasn't expecting. Unlike You're Next (see my review here) and Hush (click for my review here), which are two of my favourite home invasion movies and just horror movies in general, no explanation is given for how the mom, played by Gabrielle Union, basically turns into a ninja in a matter of minutes. I get that she's trying to rescue her two kids trapped inside and that she's probably running on adrenaline for most of it but it just seems like she's a bit too good at evading the bad guys and eventually saving the day all on her own. It certainly wasn't the worst movie that I've watched on a plane but it wasn't the best either. Speaking of the worst...

Truth Or Dare

If you've read any of my previous What I've Been Watching blog posts, you'll know how much of a horror movie fan I am and I probably should have known better than to watch Truth Or Dare, especially after viewing the trailer but there was only about an hour and a half left of the flight so I decided to go for something that wouldn't involve a great deal of attention being paid, especially when the flight attendants/Captain would be making announcements etc. throughout.

When clicking in to press play on Truth Or Dare even the entertainment system noted how critics and audiences hated this movie but 'you might just enjoy it'. Heaven knows why I thought 'okay, let's go for it!' Maybe it had something to do with the Blumhouse (the team behind Get Out, Insidious and Sinister) affiliation, which led me to believe that maybe it was one of those so bad it's good kind of horror movies but sadly that wasn't the case. Most importantly, there were absolutely zero scares and I mean zero. Not a single moment that had me even slightly frightened. Even the jump scares were absolutely pants and juvenile. It had serious Ouija vibes (remember how bad that movie was?) and the acting, like in that movie, was so poor. It was always a bit of a silly concept but it was so badly handled. Let's just say, I was more than happy when it ended and that wasn't just because we had just landed in hot and sunny Florida!

Red Sparrow

Now to be totally honest with you, I only really had an interest in seeing Red Sparrow because the ever so dreamy and talented Joel Edgerton was in it. Jennifer Lawrence has also been good in everything that I've seen her in so that was another reason to press play on my night flight home.

From seeing the trailer and reading the brief synopsis of the film, I knew that it was going to have quite a few scenes of a sexual nature, to say the least but I wasn't expecting how sexual it was. I actually had to check around me a few times as I was sat in an aisle seat and there were quite a few kids roaming about the cabin on their way home from Walt Disney World. Some scenes were shocking and graphic, which I think was what they were trying to get across but even with that, the movie felt about half an hour, if not more, too long but yet the ending felt rushed. It also felt like a very strange role for Jennifer Lawrence to take in a way, even though her acting was one of the better things about the movie.

Ocean's 8

As we flew out at the end of September and returned at the start of October, this meant that certain movies had been removed on the flight home with new ones added in their place. Ocean's 8 was one of these new movies. Since I can get pretty sleepy on a night flight, even though I'm never able to actually fall asleep, I wanted to put on something that would hopefully keep me engaged that also wasn't too dramatic, slow paced or required a lot of attention, which is definitely why I watched Red Sparrow first.

Having seen the George Clooney led Oceans franchise, I wasn't sure how Ocean's 8 would compare but I was pleasantly surprised by the story, cast and overall execution of it. First of all, having the Met Gala feature, something that I'm always drawn to and interested in each and every year, was such a great move and con to have the movie feature around. The 8 also meshed really well and I wasn't even mad at Rihanna's acting, which I did kind of expect to be somewhat sub par. Anne Hathaway was particularly great in this and I really enjoyed Sarah Paulson, Helena Bonham Carter and Awkwafina's roles too. It was fun, entertaining and exactly the kind of movie that you'd want to watch on a plane.

Have you seen any of the movies in today's What I've Been Watching post? If so, what did you think of them? And what's the best movie that you've seen this year?

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Sunday, 28 October 2018

The Big Sephora Holiday Sets Haul


sephora holiday 2018 sets

So to say that I went a little crazy when it came to the Sephora holiday sets would be a bit of an understatement, especially when this was me being restrained.

Several of the sets were available online only which involved quite a lot of logistical planning with me staying in a vacation rental but thankfully I was able to get them delivered (Sephora, you've got to get on the collect from store bandwagon!)

drunk elephant inspector drunk night kit

Drunk Elephant Inspector Drunk Night Kit ($98/Value $144)

The one brand that I was the most excited to acquire on this trip simply had to be Drunk Elephant. Even though I knew that they were finally launching here in the UK, into Space NK and Cult Beauty whilst I was on holiday, holiday money for some reason or another just doesn't feel like real money, making it much easier to part with that $100.

There were three Drunk Elephant holiday sets to choose from in Sephora and two of them have made their way over here to the UK, along with what seems to be a UK/European exclusive (see below).



I did also order the Big Reveal set which included a full size of the T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial but after many miscommunications, my parcel ultimately didn't get delivered whilst I was there but I suppose it did save me like $90 on a purchase that might have been too strong for my sensitive skin anyway.

drunk elephant uk where to buy

The Inspector Drunk Night Kit, complete with neon magnifying glass, includes a full size of the T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum, which I have heard so many people rave about. I have a strange skin texture on my forehead in particular and this looks like it's designed specifically to deal with this issue. I also like for most of my skincare to do it's work overnight so that just made buying this product a no brainer. Then for a few dollars extra I also got travel sizes of the Lala Retro Whipped Cream, B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum, C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream and Beste No.9 Jelly Cleanser. I am so excited to put these products to the test over the next few weeks and months and I will definitely be sharing my thoughts on what I try in a dedicated blog post probably at the start of December.

drunk elephant holiday set 2018

You can get this exact set here in the UK from Space NK and Cult Beauty and it really is superb value for money, especially if you've had any of Drunk Elephant's products on your to try list.

Milk Makeup Meet The Fam Holiday Set

Milk Makeup Meet The Fam Holiday Set ($39/Value $108)

I have wanted to try Milk Makeup for the longest time but every time that I do find myself at their stand I get so overwhelmed, much like I often do when I enter a Sephora in general, that I ultimately leave empty handed. So when I saw this set pop up online I knew that I had to get it. For less than $40 you get seven generous travel sizes, perfect for putting much of their range to the test and it all comes in a handy and gorgeously glittery makeup bag.

In the set you get an iconic Cooling Water, the one thing that always ends up in my basket for me then to put back because I'm not sure if I'll use or finish a full one, a Watermelon Brightening Serum, a Blur Stick, a Lip + Cheek in the shade Werk, a Holographic Stick in Supernova, a Highlighter in Lit and the much hyped Kush Mascara. I have heard so many good things about that mascara that I cannot wait give it a go, now that blog photos have been taken of course.

dr jart new ceramidin

Dr Jart. Holiday Fantasy Cera Never Runs Dry Set ($48)

Again, much like the Drunk Elephant, I've wanted to try Dr. Jart's Ceramidin for the longest time but it isn't the easiest thing to get your hands on here in the UK, especially when you can't try it out in-store to see if it's the right formulation for you. I got a little sample pot from my nearest Sephora when I first got there and finished it just before I left to go home and thankfully I was right to think that it might work for my crazy dehydrated skin.

Apparently this newly formulated version and tube launched right as I got there so I can't compare it to the original but it is just SO good! This set was also the exact same price as buying the full size tube, which this set includes! I mean, doesn't that just blow your mind a bit?

In addition to the full size Cream, it also includes one travel size Cream, one travel size Ceramidin Liquid and two full size Cermadin sheet masks. Unreal! And how cute is the packaging as well? I'm always a little bit nervous about cramming boxes like this back into my suitcase because inevitably they will get crumpled, crushed and even torn in transit but my holiday sets didn't fare too badly on my trip home this time so that was good.

saturday skin no bad days set review

Saturday Skin No Bad Days Set ($39)

Saturday Skin are a brand that we can now get here in the UK thanks to Beauty Bay and Cult Beauty but as I had quite a few products of theirs that I wanted to try, adding this set to my basket made sense. It includes their Rub-A-Dub, Daily Dew, Wide Awake and Featherweight products, all of which I am beyond excited to try. I also like that you essentially get a full skincare routine just by buying this kit. I think I may be set for skincare for the forseeable, to say the least.

I'm always looking for products to give my skin hydration and glow, which is why I ended up adding the next set to my online order too.

herbivore hydrate + glow natural skincare mini collection

Herbivore Hydrate + Glow Natural Skincare Mini Collection ($39)

Again, I'd seen Herbivore launch here in the UK earlier in the year but there was seriously too much that I wanted to try. This set contains a 60ml of the Rose Hibiscus Hydrating Face Mist, a 15ml of the Brighten Pineapple + Gemstone Glow Mask, a 5ml of the Phoenix Regenerating Facial Oil and a 7.5ml of the Pink Cloud Rosewater Moisture Creme.



I had a little play with the enclosed products whilst I was browsing the skincare aisles at Sephora and all of them feel so lovely on the skin.

herbivore true blue skin clarifying duo review

Herbivore True Blue Skin Clarifying Duo ($29/Value $50)

Last but not least we have another Herbivore set. I was completely won over by the value when it came to this set that, again, I couldn't leave it behind. I do get quite a few hormonal blemishes and even more pop up if I'm stressed or not feeling well so I thought that this might be quite a good investment.

It includes two minis of their Blue Tansy Resurfacing Clarity Mask and Lapis Balancing Facial Oil, which have a value of $50. How good is the branding when it comes to the Herbivore range?

So those are the sets that I got from Sephora this holiday season. I still have another few US beauty haul posts to share with you so be sure to check back for those over the upcoming weeks. Also, be sure to let me know if you'd like to see stand alone reviews of any of the individual gift sets or products contained within them.

Do any of these sets look like ones that you would pick up if you had the chance to? Do you wish that we had more Sephora-style value sets? Were you excited about some of these brands launching in the UK? And would you like to see a Bath & Body Works haul next or a more general Sephora/TJ Maxx style haul first?

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Wednesday, 24 October 2018

What Your Skin Can Go Through In A 24 Hour Period: Dare To Bare With Boots


anti pollution skincare

No matter what skin type we have, whether that be dry, oily, combination or normal, there are several internal and external factors that can make a big difference when it comes to how our skin behaves. And whilst you may think that many of these factors such as sunshine, pollution, stress and even a poor diet, are somewhat out of our control, there are products that you could be using to help reduce the effect.

So let's see what my skin typically goes through in a 24 hour period and how I've been tackling these factors thanks to my skincare routine;

Sun damage

Even though you might not exactly associate somewhere like Glasgow or many of the cities in the UK with lots of sunshine, even dull rainy skies can cause sun damage to your skin. I used to only ever apply SPF when I was on holiday somewhere hot and sunny but I now make sure that I apply a facial SPF each and every day before I leave the house. Sun damage can contribute to premature aging as you will know if you've ever seen someone slathered in oil on the beach looking rather crispy to say the least.

clinique city block sheer spf 25 review

However, not every facial SPF is made the same and that might be why some of us would never consider applying a thick and gloopy lotion that leaves you with a white cast on a daily basis but the Clinique City Block Sheer 25 SPF Oil-Free Daily Face Protector* really is sheer and completely weightless on the skin. It's also great for those of us who have sensitive skin or any skin type to be honest. Traditional sun tan lotions tend to break me out when they're applied to my face so I now make sure to use a separate facial SPF and one for the rest of my body.

It only takes a few extra seconds in the morning to apply but the difference that it will be making in the long run will be truly invaluable and something that you'll be completely glad that you did years down the line. And whether you're going makeup free or going full glam, you can wear this formulation on it's own or under makeup as a priming product whilst still getting the same level of protection.

glasgow lifestyle bloggers

Pollution

Living and commuting in a busy city like Glasgow means dealing with unavoidable environmental factors on a daily basis but you can now do something about how much of an effect it has on your skin. I'd seen anti pollution skincare starting to spring up online and on the High Street but never really knew what they did or where to begin. When you think about the amount of congestion, vehicle fumes and general nasties in the air, we really should be taking more note.

clinique dramatically different hydrating jelly review

I, for example, often walk up the most polluted street in Scotland (it's Glasgow's Hope Street for those of you interested) and whilst you see cars sat with their exhausts running and smoke billowing into the sky, you often can't physically see the amount of pollution in the air. These tiny microscopic particles are that small that they don't simply sit on your skin for you to hopefully remove with your evening cleanse but they can actually penetrate the skin, causing real visible problems. Using products to shield and protect your skin from external pollutants can help you to take back control and rebuild the skin's natural barrier. The Clinique Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly* not only feels lovely on the skin (it's got the most gorgeous gel texture to it) but it also locks in moisture and protects your skin from pollution thanks to it's clean-shield technology.

Stress

If you didn't already know, stress can have such a visible effect on your body both on the inside and externally. We've all probably suffered from stress or continue to do so and at particularly stressful times like when work gets hectic, exams roll around or if you've ever endured a house move or days of travelling, it can affect you and your body in many different ways. From losing sleep to having your skin become dull, pallid and prone to serious breaks and even your hair coming out in clumps (this exact thing happened to me when I was doing my dissertation).

I often get a cluster of angry looking spots and blemishes when things are getting on top of me and that's due to the fact that our bodies produce chemicals when they're stressed and these chemicals can cause an imbalance that presents itself both inside and out. Rest and recovery is especially important when you're feeling like this and it's when I start to feel like everything's starting to get on top of me that I like to take some time out of my day to practice self care and to just unplug my mind from whatever it is that is causing me stress even just for a couple of hours.

Clinique City Block Purifying Charcoal Cleansing Gel

The Clinique City Block Purifying Charcoal Cleansing Gel* starts my self care routine and is normally followed by a face mask and putting my phone on airplane mode for a few hours (it really does curb my urge to check social media every two minutes and allows me to truly unplug). If you have an issue with excess oil or it comes to the surface more when you're stressed or run down, this is the product to try.

Poor diet

Even if you try to follow a healthy diet, we all have those foods that aren't exactly great for us that we like to treat ourselves to from time to time or foods that are just non-negotiable even if you are on a diet. Snacks, salty, sugary and greasy foods can all leave our bodies screaming out for additional hydration.

clinique dramatically different moisturizing lotion reviews

As someone who particularly loves salty foods and then adds even more salt on top, I know how big a difference eating too much of it can make on my hydration levels in general. I feel dehydrated both on the inside and the outside. Drinking more water and using hydrating products like the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion +* are key. The original Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion was actually the first product that I ever tried from Clinique when I was in my early teens and I've been a fan of it ever since. To now see a new version of it with double the amounts of hydration, designed for those of us with very dry and dehydrated skin, is fantastic. It also works as a barrier against other environmental stresses.

clinique city block review

When it comes to skincare persistence really is key. You might not see immediate differences after 24 hours but knowing that you're proactively doing something to look after your skin should stand you in good stead. It normally takes at least a month or sometimes even a longer time period for the full effects of skincare products to be seen.

Do you think about the internal and external factors that could be impacting your complexion? If so, what products have you added to your skincare routine to combat them? Have you tried any of the products in today's post? And what is your biggest skin worry?

*Written in collaboration with Boots but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own
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Friday, 19 October 2018

Why You Should Seriously Consider Solo Travel


reasons to travel solo

Even though it's been less than a week since I returned home from my trip to Florida (expect lots of Sephora hauls and photo diaries very soon), I'm already dreaming up where to visit next and as much as I loved travelling with my family and creating some incredible memories, it's definitely got me itching to plan my next spot of solo travel. Let me know if you'd like to see a blog post on the top ten places that I'd like to visit next as a solo traveller (who else has Trek America on their list?) or where I'd love to visit with friends and family (I've definitely got my eye on going somewhere either completely tropical, like the Mediterranean or the Maldives (how dreamy does this place look) or somewhere really snowy (check out these ski holidays from Mark Warner).

Back to today's post, if you've been reading Ellis Tuesday for a while now, you'll know that I embarked on my first piece of solo travel last Summer when I visited New York. It was honestly one of the best experiences of my life and I was so proud of what I achieved by doing it. So I thought that I would share with you why you should seriously consider solo travel at some point in your life as well, here on the blog today.

You are completely in control

As selfish as it sounds, only having to worry about what you want to do and when is such a freeing experience. I could decide when I wanted to leave in the morning, without having to wait on others getting organised and ready, could eat when I was hungry, not when everyone else is/at places that didn't really take my fancy and could choose exactly what I wanted to do without having to compromise. You also don't have to explain your choices to anyone. Want to have ice cream for dinner? You can! Want to spend an entire day shopping? There will be no-one there to moan about it!

You'll gain confidence

When you mention to friends, family and colleagues that you're travelling somewhere on your own, many of them will say how brave you must be to do such a thing. I really didn't think about it in that way but when I returned I realised just how much I had accomplished on my trip.

Growing up I was always incredibly shy and had what I now realise was horrible anxiety. I've grown a lot as a person since then but it still doesn't stop me from saying 'you too' when the person serving me at Duty Free or WH Smith tells me to have a good flight. Saying that, I did get myself all the way from Newark Airport taking an Airtrain, a New Jersey Transit train and then finally a taxi up to Times Square without breaking a sweat. I knew exactly what tickets I needed to buy, got off at the right station and checked in at my hotel without a hitch or a worry. I sat in restaurants by myself without needing a book or my phone to keep me company. I took the Subway everywhere and didn't get lost once (I may have went down the wrong entrance one time but it was still the correct station), so much so that fellow tourists would ask me for directions thinking that I was a native New Yorker (see my top tips for navigating the NYC Subway system here)! As someone who used to get nervous going anywhere new, even if it was only a 5 minute journey from my house, on my own, I could see just how far I'd come confidence-wise on my first solo trip.

solo female travel usa

You'll also gain independence

I've always been pretty independent and prefer doing certain things such as clothes shopping and exploring on my own but nothing will make you feel more independent than being completely responsible for yourself with no one else to rely on. I was the responsible adult, which as someone who's only ever travelled with their family was something completely new to me. If I didn't do something nobody else would be there to do it for me. I had to lug my luggage around with me (if your bags are ridiculously heavy like my cabin case was going out, just ask someone who might be a little bit/a lot stronger than you to get it into the overhead bin or off of the luggage carousel, there will always be people to help you in these situations). I had to have all of my travel documents ready for immigration. I had to pay for absolutely everything (there's no going halves on dinner or cab rides).

You don't have to go it completely alone (if you don't want to)

If you want a few days or weeks completely to yourself, you can definitely keep it that way but embarking on solo travel is actually a great way to meet new people, connect with and make international acquaintances and experience new cultures. When I finalised my plans I actually found out that some fellow Scots would be in the area around the same time as me. And even though I hadn't met Hayley before back home in Scotland, we spent a Saturday together walking The High Line, going for lunch at Chelsea Market and exploring Manhattan together. It was great to finally meet her and so nice to hear someone with the same accent as me. Definitely reach out to friends and acquaintances to see if they or anyone that they know could connect with you when you're over there. Chances are there will be.

If you're staying somewhere like a hostel, the opportunities to meet new people and explore your chosen destination with other like minded people and solo travellers are even greater.

solo female travel blog

You can practice some serious self care

It might sound crazy to say that when you're on the other side of the world or in a different country/continent is actually one of the best times to practice some serious self care but it is. Self care and what you deem as self care can be different for everyone but you'll finally have time to sit and read a book cover to cover, to treat yourself to something indulgent (hello all things Glossier on my trip) or simply to stick on a movie and order room service.

Taking time out to yourself where you're not chained to your phone or going at a hundred miles an hour is so important and it'll also serve as a nice memory of your time away when you weren't rushing all over the place or trying to cram in one more attraction, museum or cultural experience.

Whether it's an overnight stay somewhere close to where you live, a weekend away in nearby Europe or a week plus (I did 11 nights myself) on another continent, I could not recommend giving solo travel a try enough to you. You'll know right away whether it's the kind of thing for you and if you're anything like me, you'll be thinking of where to go next.

Have you ever travelled on your own? Or even just done part of a journey on your own? Does solo travel sound appealing to you? And where would you love to visit next, either on your own or with friends/family?

Post sponsored by Mark Warner
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Sunday, 14 October 2018

How To Make A Long Haul Flight That Bit More Bearable


carry on essentials for long flights

Having just conquered two 9 hour flights to and from the US, one of which was an overnight flight, I thought that I would share how a little bit of advance preparation can go a long way in helping you not only to survive but actually enjoy the whole experience. Some of the tips may be pretty common sense but all it takes is a little forward planning to totally transform your travel time.

So here is how to make a long haul flight that bit more bearable;

Stay hydrated

My number one tip has got to be to stay hydrated. This means either buying bottled water (I try and get the biggest one I possibly can at Boots or WH Smith) once you've cleared security or bringing an empty bottle with you that you can then fill up before you fly or once you get on the plane. I've had no issues with asking the crew on board to fill up my water bottle for me either when they're doing the drinks service or just as and when I need it.

My face also gets ridiculously dry and tight feeling whenever I fly and as I'm not one of those people who does an entire skincare routine on board, the best way to combat this is to use a facial mist. This one* from La Roche-Posay is less than £3 and leaves my skin feeling fresh and a little bit less gross. There are quite a few to choose from on the market now and these are the ones that are on my list to try next;



Bring your own snacks/food

Even if you don't mind airline food, the wait for it or even just seeing the trolley off in the distance, so close but also so far, bringing your own snacks or food on board with you gets rid of all that waiting for you. You can eat at your own pace and don't need to play airline food roulette when you're really hungry.

I also wholeheartedly recommend grabbing some comfort or fast food from the airport terminal to take on board with you. On the way home from the US I normally opt for some Auntie Anne's pretzel nuggets (oh, they're good!) or Krispy Kreme doughnut holes and boy do I treasure those little bites. I've even seen someone bring an entire pizza on board with them, pizza box and all. He may not have been the most popular passenger but I think secretly those who were giving him the evils were just insanely jealous.

what to take in hand luggage for a long haul flight

Take advantage of the in-flight entertainment

If you're flying long haul it's more than likely that the plane you're on will have some form of in-flight entertainment. However, if you're travelling on a budget airline or the plane that you're flying on doesn't have either seatback or fold down screens, do not worry. A lot of streaming sites such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and even BBC iPlayer will allow you to download movies and episodes of TV shows onto your phone, tablet or laptop for you to watch at your convenience. So you don't need to worry about paying for WiFi onboard or it draining your mobile data either.

How to actually get a sleep

Some of us are lucky enough to be able to sleep anywhere (sadly I am not one of those individuals) but even I feel the need to shut my eyes and attempt to get even an hour's nap on a night flight. Here are my top tips for actually getting a sleep in economy;

1. Bring a sleep mask - even if the cabin lights are dimmed and you've got your window blind down, it's not exactly ideal lighting for getting some proper shut eye. Block it all out with a good eye mask.

Here are some of my favourite ones on the market at the moment:



2. Wear a blanket scarf - not all airlines provide you with blankets these days and even if you do get one, they can be pretty scratchy and not exactly cosy enough to nuzzle into. Whether you're flying somewhere considerably colder or flying to or from the warmest of climates, it can get pretty chilly on board. I always bring a big blanket scarf with me to keep me warm on my travels but it also doubles as a blanket on the flight. It doesn't take up any extra space in your luggage as you can have it on your person and you'll definitely be smug when you actually feel comfortable even if your seat back doesn't recline quite as much as you'd like it to.

3. Bring vitamins or supplements with you - I watch quite a lot of packing hacks and tip videos particularly in the run up to my next trip and most Youtubers seem to take natural supplements in a bid to help them sleep or just feel more relaxed on board. I was definitely keen to try some on this trip and I eventually settled on the Utmost Me Neuro Rest supplements. They are 100% natural, Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free so won't upset my stomach and seriously helped with jet lag and the change in time zones. I'm ultimately trying to get better at taking more vitamins so let me know if you'd like me to explore the world of multivitamins and supplements more in the future.

Wear flight socks

As someone with poor circulation, I always worry about sitting in the same position for too long. If I sit with my feet dangling, like I would if I'm sat on a train, in a waiting room or just in a seat that doesn't allow me to elevate them for anything longer than about ten minutes, my feet actually begin to resemble a zombie's. I'm talking purplish blue feet that don't look human at all.

Wearing flight compression socks just takes the worry of anything horrible happening off my mind. That in combination with getting up and actually walking about/down the aisles and moving my feet and legs about beside or in my seat, stops my legs from feeling stiff. I would easily recommend doing both if you're on a flight that's any longer than an hour and would say that it's pretty much a must if you're flying long haul.

So there are some of my top tips for actually enjoying that flight that you've more often than not paid hundreds of pounds for.

Do you have any tips for making a long haul flight more bearable? What do you think of my suggestions? And do you have any flights or holidays booked at the moment?

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Sunday, 7 October 2018

My First Christmas Gift Set Purchase: The Stila Holiday Liquid Eye Shadow Sets


stila holiday 2018

Last year I missed out on the chance to pick up one of Stila's Holiday sets so this year I was taking no chances and ordered them as soon as they both went online.

I couldn't quite decide which of the two eyeshadow sets to go for so I ended up just having to get both of them. I've had my eye on Stila's liquid eyeshadow offerings for some time now but there are that many to choose from that I ultimately got overwhelmed each and every time that I paid the Stila stand a visit or when I was having a scroll through the shades online. I just couldn't decide which ones to try first. Also, as they're liquid eyeshadows, I didn't want to buy three or four full sizes of them only for them to inevitably dry out at some point or before I'd got as much wear out of them as I would have liked. Which is why buying the Holiday gift sets was a real no brainer for me.

So let's see exactly what you get in each of the Stila Holiday 2018 liquid eyeshadow sets;

stila all that shimmers & glow liquid eye shadow set

All That Shimmers Shimmer & Glow Set

First up we have the All That Shimmers Shimmer & Glow Set. Containing three of the Stila Shimmer & Glow liquid eyeshadows in the shades Starlight, Kitten and Espresso, the All That Shimmers set is the one for you if you love a good metallic eyeshadow. The shade Espresso, in particular, is a brand new shade for Fall 2018/the holiday season so I was particularly excited to see that as part of the set.

The one shade that I was especially keen to try was Kitten. It's just the most beautiful colour. And the third shade in this specific set is Starlight which is a gold champagne shade. Having wanted to invest in these for quite a few years now, I was over the moon to finally get a chance to try them out without having to shell out some serious ££.

stila oh my stars review

Oh My Stars Glitter & Glow Set

Talking of being impressed, the other exclusive set for the 2018 holiday season is the Oh My Stars Glitter & Glow Set. It contains three of the Glitter & Glow liquid eyeshadows in the shades Diamond Dust, Kitten Karma and Gold Goddess. Basically if you're looking to add some glitter eyeshadows that really pack a punch when it comes to pigmentation, sparkle and shine, then this is the set for you. I love that you get a gold, silver and copper/rose gold in this set and I'm now completely covered when it comes to any glitters that I could possibly need, especially as someone who more often than not sticks to pretty neutral and natural eye looks.

Having never tried the Glitter & Glow shadows, I was a little concerned that they might irritate the eye area but I had nothing to worry about. They don't feel too gritty or scratchy on the eyelid but they're still chunky enough to give you that glitter and glimmer look that you're after. They all add such a pop of sparkle to any eye look and would be perfect in the run up to the Christmas and party season.

stila liquid eyeshadow review

Apologies for my lack of swatches in today's post but these really are that dinky that I didn't want to waste any of the precious product on the back of my hand. No doubt you'll see them on my actual eyes either on here or on my Instagram in the run up to Christmas and festive period.

If either or both of the sets have caught your eye, you can get them from Beauty Bay, Cult Beauty or click below to get them from Cloud 10 Beauty, where I bought mine.



Have you tried any of Stila's liquid eyeshadows before? If so, what did you think of them and which shade or shades are your favourite? And do you have your eye on any Christmas gift sets already? Or are there ones, like the Soap & Glory Boots Star Gift set, that you buy every year?

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