Sunday, 4 March 2018

4 Beautiful Places to Visit in Bali

Sunset at Dreamland Beach, Bali

After leaving Christchurch in New Zealand, and a 9-hour layover in Sydney we were on a plane heading to one of my dream destinations- BALI.

Bali is one of those places that you picture when someone talks about a 'tropical paradise', so I had really high expectations. I have to be honest: I wasn't completely bowled over by it. Shock!!! Horror!!! 

This may have been because we only spent just over a week there all in all, and also because we got to visit Lombok and the Gili Islands which have some really stunning beaches. But this wouldn't stop me visiting again as it still is a beautiful country. 

I will go into detail in some later posts about things like costs and places to stay but here are 4 of the beautiful places we visited while in Bali.

Sunset at Seminyak, Bali


If you're looking for a really big sandy beach with bars along it, then this is for you. We chose Seminyak over Kuta as it's a bit more chilled out, but if you're looking for more of a party scene then head south down the beach to Kuta.

The streets of Seminyak are not exactly the prettiest, but it gave us that bustling rundown charm that parts of Bali have to offer. However, when you get to the beach, you're really in for a treat. It's big enough to not feel overcrowded and even though it doesn't have white sand like some places in Indonesia, it's pretty clean and well looked after. 

In the evenings, why not grab a Bintang and pull up a beanbag to watch the amazing sunset with the mountains silhouetted in the distance? Even on a cloudy day, it's pretty beautiful and even though we didn't get to spend much time here due to Nyepi Day (essentially a day where everyone has to stay inside, but more on that another time), it's somewhere I will definitely be returning to. 

Jambe Culture Village


Think rice terraces, beautiful temples, and cheeky monkeys and you have Ubud. This is the place to experience the real Bali- walk down the side streets and you'll pass traditional house compounds with stunningly decorated house gates and small family-run shops stocked with decorations for religious festivals.

Ubud's terraces and temples are so picturesque, but the thing that makes it beautiful to me is the atmosphere. Even though it thrives off of tourism and this sometimes shows, it is also a very chilled out and safe place. It is a hub of culture and wellbeing which has been fully embraced by those who visit- you'll find many a bookshop or yoga retreat around here. 

Bingin Beach


After returning from the Gili Islands we chose to spend our last few days based near Bingin and Dreamland Beach and boy, was it worth it. Even though the place we stayed wasn't exactly the best accommodation we'd experienced, the area itself is so beautiful. 

Set against the cliffs with homestays and cafe's perched on the side, Bingin Beach is a surfer's paradise, with a rocky beach that goes straight into deep water. The water is choppy but great if you're a strong swimmer, and if you're not up for a dip then chilling out with a smoothie on the rocks makes the perfect day. In the evenings this place is buzzing with people coming to watch the sunset and take in the surroundings.

Just up the coast is Dreamland Beach. This is a fab sandy beach just a short drive from Bingin and I could spend hours here. Like in Seminyak, this beach is huge and the water is a lot calmer than on Bingin, but still loved by surfers. The one thing that made this beach stand out for me was the sunset in the top photo, which was one of my favourites from the whole trip! 


Thanks for stopping by and hope you love this post! Can't wait to start posting some more of my South East Asia content. Would love to hear your thoughts about this post, is there anywhere in Bali you want to go to that I didn't mention? 


Wednesday, 28 February 2018

My Post-Travel Pamper Routine

My Post-Travel Pamper products

If any of you have been travelling or backpacking for a long period time, then you'll know what I mean when I say you end up returning home in a bit of a dishevelled state. You've been on a plane for the past 12 hours, where you've tried to sleep (and failed), have been sitting in the same clothes for way too long and have had the air-conditioning slowly sucking all the moisture out of your skin.

I realised after going on a lot of long-haul flights that I wasn't the type of person to sit there with a sheet mask on, however good it may be for me. I can certainly manage to do a quick cleanse and then pop on a night moisturiser to keep as much moisture in as possible, but the idea of freaking out the flight crew and my fellow passengers while sitting there looking like the guy from Friday 13th isn't my thing. Plus I think Chris would disown me if I did that!

Once I get home, as well as tackling the mammoth task of unpacking and washing all my clothes, I also set about bringing my skin and hair back from the dead by giving myself a good old pampering. As well as helping me feel more human again, I also find it relaxes me after spending the past day manoeuvring around airports with a huge backpack. 

Here are the main things I do after travelling to pamper myself back to normality.

formula 10.0.6 one smooth operator face scrub, 7th heaven charcoal nose strips and soap & glory's scrub of your life


Even though I take exfoliators and masks with me when I travel, I don't always use them as much as I would at home. When I do it's a real treat while on the road, but sometimes I may not have the time to put aside to do a face mask or I could be on an overnight bus or train. Essentially when I come home, I normally find my skin and body is in desperate need of a good descaling. 

I'll initially give my face and body a good scrub on the day I return, and then throughout the week, I'll apply a couple of masks to rejuvenate my face and give it a moisture kick. This is honestly the best feeling after a long day of moving around. As you may know from my winter skincare checklist, I love 7th Heaven's face masks as they are so easy to apply and remove with maximum results. I'm currently using these Charcoal nose strips on repeat, as they are perfect for removing a build up of blackheads and blemishes 

Recently I've been trying out Formula 10.0.6's face scrub and it definitely does the job at removing the dead skin! It doesn't leave my face raw after, and the smaller particles help clear pores and brighten my complexion. It works particularly well if you're prone to blemishes or your skin can be a bit temperamental after travelling. My skin always feels so smooth after and I find I only have to use this once a week to keep up the results.  

When it comes to my body, nothing beats Soap & Glory's Scrub of Your Life. It does a great job of removing any dry patches and also helps reduce the appearance of any 'chicken skin' or impurities I may have. I've been using this for a couple of years now and it's my favourite body scrub to date.

monu spa warming ginger bath and body oil and rosehip plus oil


I used to completely forget about how wonderful oils are but I'm making a conscious effort to include them in my life more often. Whenever I use a serum on my face or an oil in my bath, my skin is like brand new thanks to the goodness they give my skin.

I normally reach for a Vitamin C serum like the Balance Power Serum which perks up my skin but I've also been trying out some others to see if they can help my skin even further. A favourite at the moment is this Rosehip Plus Oil

I've found that using this has been improving my skin pigmentation which, if you didn't know, is red tomato territory, and has been helping with any blemishes that have been trying to take shape on my skin. On top of this, rosehip oil is known for repairing sun-damaged skin so this would be perfect to use after a beach holiday when you've fallen asleep on your towel or in my case, bought a suspicious sun cream in a Cambodian chemist that practically invited the sun to have a party on my face. I give you sun-dried tomato Georgie.

Bath oils are rather a recent discovery, as in the past I've normally reached for a bath bomb or bubble bath to jazz up bath time. But now I'm pretty hooked, and every time I have one at the moment I reach for the MonuSpa Warming Ginger Bath and Body Oil. This little guy came in my most recent LookFantastic box which is rather fab for travel size products, and the ginger doesn't only rejuvenate the skin but also the scent (if you like the smell of ginger) refreshes your senses while relaxing your muscles.

lush mint julips lip scrub, carmex cherry tube and carmex sugar plum lip balm


My lips took a bit of a beating last year- I didn't take my trusty Lush Mint Julips lip scrub with me and after 5 months of not scrubbing them it felt so good to finally treat them. I definitely need to get a new one and possibly try another flavour, but it's a habit I'm glad I've picked up again. 

After scrubbing them, I apply my trusty Carmex as I know it will keep my lips crack-free for hours. If you haven't tried the cherry one or the limited edition sugar plum one then you're really missing out! Even my bf is a fan, and he's always asking for some when we're out and about!

shea moisture organ oil and almond milk smooth and tame shampoo and conditioner and 7th heaven organ oil hair mask


As much as I loved having beachy waves every day last year, I realised when I returned home that my hair had turned into a mass of sun-bleached straw. All the days spent in the sea had stripped any moisture from my hair that had been there which meant that when I returned home it was hard to style without looking like a birds nest. 

The first thing I did when I was home was to book a haircut. You can apply as much conditioner as you want or slap on a hair mask but nothing really beats getting a fresh cut. As well as taking off all the dead ends, it's nice to refresh my look with some layers so it looks more alive than when I sat in the chair. 

After going for the chop, I then go in with a shampoo and conditioner that are super moisturising, like the Shea Moisture Argan Oil and Almond Milk Smooth & Tame shampoo and conditioner. The first time I tried this set I was completely sold, mainly because it really helped tackle my flyaway hair and any frizzy parts. The shampoo especially felt just as thick and luxurious as the conditioner which is a big tick for me and soaked into my hair really well. 

Also, I always find that like a nice hot bath, washing my hair can be really relaxing after a flight, especially if the products I use smell as good as these!

If my hair is really struggling, I'll go in with a hair mask like the 7th Heaven Argan Oil Rescue Mask that I'll leave on for between 5-10 mins depending on how much time I have. This normally gives my hair a breath of fresh air and gives it a bit more volume and bounce than normal. 

bilou fizzy berry creamy shower foam and patisserie de bain sugared violets hand and body lotion


As well as my face, my body needs a moisture boost after being repeatedly sunburnt (not intentional, promise!) and so I turn to products that do the job but that are also gentle on my skin, as it can get a bit irritated when dry and break out in patches of eczema. 

If you're looking for a lush smelling shower gel that won't irritate your skin, then you'll really love Bilou's products- I'm pretty obsessed! I first spotted this brand in a Zoella video, and they just launched exclusively at Superdrug with some of the most delish smelling products I've ever tried!

The Fizzy Berry Shower Foam is the perfect balance of smelling sweet but not too artificial, and the foam consistency is surprisingly creamy on the skin, with some of it sinking in before you wash it off. This means the moisturising starts before you've even stepped out of the shower, but it also doesn't flare up any sensitive areas which some yummy smelling products do.

Once I've dried myself, I immediately put on some body lotion to make the most that my skin is soft. I always go for one that is thick and smells good as I love getting wafts of it throughout the day. If you're looking for some really yummy smells, the rest of the Bilou range and Patisserie De Bain do great options. I'm currently loving the Sugared Violet Body Lotion which smells like Palma Violets and is super thick without using too much. 


After I've finished pampering my body, I'll go and pamper my mind. Books have been a big part of my life since I first learnt to read, and there's nothing more I enjoy than chilling out with a book after a hectic couple of days of moving around. I may get the chance to read on a flight, bus or train, but in the back of my mind, I know that I have to keep slightly alert so that I can get off at my stop or get ready for landing. 

I've set myself the challenge of reading a book a month this year so expect a lot more book reviews coming your way! At the moment I'm making my way through A Corner of My Heart by Mark Seaman, and I'm really enjoying it so far! I'm just over halfway through so I will be posting a full review when I finish it.


I would love to hear if there is anything else you do to recover after travelling and stayed tuned on here and on my Instagram for news on where I'm travelling to next!


Sunday, 18 February 2018

Travel Bucket List 2018

bali tegalalang rice terraces

After having the most amazing year of travel in 2017, I have well and truly caught the travel bug. About a month after we flew back in from 5 months away backpacking New Zealand and South East Asia, I was already back on Skyscanner looking at what deals there were for our next trip.

Since returning home I've made it my mission to get proactive with my income- pushing my blog more, taking up freelancing roles and not going too crazy on ASOS when new things drop. This is all in aid of building my savings back up and putting aside a bit to use for traveling.

The question is: where do I go next? There are so many amazing places to explore that it can be hard to know where to start, so I've put together a little bucket list of travel for this year that I want to try and tick off.


When we were backpacking last year, loads of people we met always said the same thing: you need to go to Nepal. After seeing pictures of their adventures, I soon understood why. The Himalayas are really hard to describe other than that the snow-topped mountains are strangely magical, and the fact that you can trek around the villages of the Middle Hills with the mountains surrounding you is something I never dreamed was possible. 

The 3-week loop is definitely for those who like their walking- it's a 300km trek! But the idea of walking through the mountains is weirdly appealing to me and something that is firmly at the top of this bucket list when we've saved up enough. 



Not going to lie, but I've been heavily influenced by my next destination by Ed Sheeran's song. I had always wanted to go, but he reminded me that it really is a fab city with a lot of spirit. The Gothic quarter really appeals to my inner architecture lover, and the idea of eating tapas every day is a dream. I've always wanted to see the Sagrada Familia too regardless of the crowds, I feel like you haven't been to Barcelona without at least having a look. An added bonus of having Gava Beach just a short drive away means I can squeeze a beach day into our city break!

I can just imagine sitting outside a little cafe on a warm day, consuming endless amounts of coffee and churros...



I know this is very broad, but I would be perfectly happy going anywhere in Italy. I've always wanted to go there since I was a little girl, and after seeing Roman Holiday I was practically packing my bags ready to go! The opportunity hasn't risen yet to go, but I'm determined to go this year. 

As a major foodie whose guilty pleasure is Italian food, eating olives, ice cream and pasta in the country they originate from is the perfect way to enjoy Italy. A couple of places I'd like to explore first are Milan, Rome, Naples and Lake Como. If you've been to any of these, let me know where I should go first!



I never really considered Switzerland as somewhere I wanted to visit, but over the past year, I've seen so many people going there be it for skiing or city breaks. Firstly the scenery is spectacular- the Swiss Alps are just as beautiful in spring as they are in the winter as they remind me so much of the mountains in New Zealand. I definitely want to go skiing and paragliding at some point too and this place is high on the list.

As for city breaks, Basel has the most beautiful architecture especially in the Marktplatz area and along the river, and Zurich has some really pretty streets that I could imagine spending hours exploring. It just seems to me like a really chilled out country which will prove to be a really relaxing trip.



Now to tell you the truth, I have already been to Paris but it was when I was about 11 on a school trip and I feel like I never got a chance to fully appreciate this wonderful city. We did the attractions like the Eiffel Tower but never got to explore the streets of Paris, which is something I'd definitely do if I got the chance to go back. I also didn't get the chance to visit the Louvre or Notre Dame, and I'd probably end up on a hunt for all The Da Vinci Code locations!

As well as this, the little cafes and trips to places like Angelina's need to be ticked off the list,  and a stroll down the River Seine would make all my American in Paris dreams come true. Plus I'm sure a little retail therapy would suit me for a rainy day...



I always associated Ibiza with being a party island, but after reading about it in a bit more detail, I now know it's much more than that. You don't have to hit the clubs every night- you can stroll around the old town in search of wonderful views, lounge on the beautiful beaches or take a day trip over to the stunning Formentera.

I feel like I need to do the clubs in Ibiza at least once in my life, but if the food and relaxed vibes during the day are as good as people say they are, I'll definitely be heading back for more beach holidays in the future...




I hope you've enjoyed this little bucket list, and maybe given you some travel inspo of your own! The blog posts that I've recommended are all great articles that I'll be referring back to when I'm planning my trips!



Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas for Her

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas for Her

I feel for you if you struggle to get your other half a present on Valentine's Day. Some people love all the romantic gestures, but some people are just not fussed. It can feel like a challenge, but I promise that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

I give you, my Valentine's Day gift ideas. 

These can be for your partner, family member or if you feel like treating yourself on the 14th, I've put together a little selection of gift ideas that might help you out. There are also some great cruelty-free and vegan choices in here too, and I've marked those words in bold to make your life a little easier in finding them in this long old post.


Indulgent products that give your skin and body a bit of a pamper always go down well on the most romantic day of the year. Be it from their favourite brand, or a new product that you know they'd like to try, there's always a great selection on sale even if it's not tailored to Valentine's.

tropic soothe the senses bath soak

To help de-stress after a long hard day, Tropic's Soothe the Senses Bath Soak* turns from an oil to a nourishing bath milk that releases gorgeous scents of frangipani, rose geranium, citrus and cedarwood into your bathroom. This aromatherapy edition is vegan and allows you to get that spa tranquillity and calmness in your own home to help relax your body and mind. 

This stuff really makes bath time more enjoyable and after a good soak, the macadamia oil and Vitamin E left my skin super soft without loads of residue left behind. This has become an essential in my bathroom now- I don't know what I did before bath milk!

baylis & harding pink prosecco treats for feet set

baylis & harding pink prosecco fizz van

baylis & harding body treats ultimate indulgence set

Baylis & Harding always do the best gift sets and this Valentine's they haven't disappointed! They have released their Pink Prosecco Fizz collection which includes some amazing sets to suit every budget. Plus all Baylis & Harding products are cruelty-free.

If you're looking for a little gift for a friend or family member who likes to keep warm, then the Treats For Feet Sock set* is a great choice. You get a pair of super fluffy pink socks to snuggle on the sofa in and a reviving foot lotion to soothe tired feet. Slather this on and then pop on the socks so the lotion can sink into your feet and leave them soft and smooth. 
It comes in this gorgeous packaging and would be perfect for birthdays and Mother's Day as well as Valentine's Day.

If you're looking for something that will make them smile, then the Prosecco Van* is a great choice. I think the tin is absolutely adorable, and I'll definitely be reusing this as a storage tin. Inside you get a body wash and polisher than cleanse the skin, and a hand and body lotion. All the smells are very subtle so no need to worry about whether the person you're gifting it to will like the fragrance or not.

There may be someone that you really want to treat, and if that is the case then I give you the Body Treats Ultimate Indulgence set*. The value for money with this is amazing- you get a 500ml bottle shower creme and body lotion, 250g of bath soal crystals for those relaxing nights in and an intricate flower shaped body polisher. The packaging as always is stunning and really gives the wow factor. 

bioderma sensible eye contour gel

If you're a fan of Bioderma or know anyone who is, then maybe treat them to their favourite product. Mine at the moment is the Sensibio Eye Contour Gel* which, along with the eye cream featured in my last post, has been helping calm eczema around my eyes. I put this on just before my makeup as it works as a great eye primer while protecting the area from anything that might irritate it. It has also helped reduce the redness and puffiness caused by my recent flare-up, which means I can finally wear makeup again!


After looking after your skin, it's always nice to gift things that will make you look good cosmetically. The thing I enjoy most about getting ready to go out is taking the time with my hair and makeup, experimenting with new shades and formulas to see what works for me. That's why cosmetics and haircare go down so well on special occasions like Valentine's Day.

lee stafford hair growth treatment and leave in spray

Let's start off with haircare: with the hot pink packaging that they are known and loved for, Lee Stafford always has such great products to try or to gift to someone. For instance, if you know someone who struggles to grow their hair, then the Hair Growth Treatment* and Leave In Spray* are worth a try.

These are currently taking the haircare market by storm, with the Hair Growth Treatment now Lee Stafford's best selling product. The treatment smells gorgeous (more like body lotion than a hair mask) and contains a special protein that helps stimulate the hair cells to keep the hair growing. Just leave this in for 5 minutes in-between your shampoo and conditioner to see results, and it can be used every day, or once a week. 

The spray, which is a new product to the Hair Growth collection, is similar to the treatment but in spray form and is filled with caffeine to create circulation and strength around the hair follicles. The thing I love about this is that if you're not too fussed about the length of your hair but want to make it stronger, this also helps with that as well as giving it volume. I put this on before drying my hair and it left it feeling smooth but full of oomph around the roots. 

kat von d studded kiss creme lipsticks in adora, a-go-go and backstage bambi

One of my favourite types of makeup to buy is lip products. I used to be notorious for spending money on lipsticks to build up a little collection of my own. I know a lot of people get a bit giddy over a new lipstick which is why it makes such a great gift for Valentine's!  

My faves over at Kat Von D sent over some of the new Studded Kiss Crème lipsticks* and I can say I would be rather chuffed if I received them as a present from a loved one. They either come in satin-matte or metallic finishes to suit every lipstick addict and the colours as always are super pigmented and fun. They're also vegan, and the packaging doesn't fail to impress with its studded sides and monogrammed lip bullet. For Valentine's Day themed colours, A-Go-Go is a fun coral-orange matte, Backstage Bambi is another matte but in a hot pink fuschia, and Adora is a classic red but with a metallic twist.

tropic lip fudge collection on clear, pink guava and rosewood

If the person you're buying for likes vegan lip colours that are a little more subtle, Tropic has brought a great collection of lip fudge conditioners that keep the lips plump and moisturised while giving them a sheer wash of colour. They are thick and luxurious to apply and don't feel sticky on the lips. 

These lip fudges contain 26 plant extracts to help keep those lips in tip-top condition for Valentine's and smell so good! They come in clear, pink guava and rosewood which you can either buy separately or in this great little set*. 


Chocolate is probably one of the classic Valentine's Day gift choices because most people adore the stuff. Walk into any supermarket and there is normally a whole aisle dedicated to themed chocolate!

hotel chocolat blushing hearts filled chocolates and love solid milk chocolate hearts

But if you want to give something a little more special, Hotel Chocolat is always my go-to. They make quality chocolates in delicious flavours and beautiful designs that are just as good to look at as they are to eat.

They have over 100 products to choose from for Valentine's, but two that stood out to me was the Love Milk Chocolate Hearts* which have the most stunningly intricate hummingbird design on them, and the Blushing Hearts Filled chocolates* in vanilla, pecan and salted caramel. These are currently out of stock so if you want to check out what else Hotel Chocolat has to offer to take a look here.


Are you gifting anything this Valentine's, or are you going to be treating yourself?


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