17.11.2017- London Loves: The Hoxton, Shoreditch

Friday, 17 November 2017

It's always lovely when you happen upon somewhere new after a spur-of-the-moment choice isn't it? Sometimes our lives are forward planned so much that it leaves little (if any!) room for flexibility or taking some time to do something which you haven't anticipated in advance. As a result, it's often easy to forget just how enjoyable it is to do things on a whim, and over the last month or so I've been really refreshed with just taking things a little bit more easily. I've made some brilliant new discoveries along the way too- one of which is a destination I'm sure I'll be heading back to as soon as I'm able:

The Hoxton is a destination which I'd heard so many good things about, and having walked past the sister venue in Holborn many a time on my lunch break, it seemed like a visit was long overdue. As we were in Shoreditch for Hannah's birthday lunch, we popped in for a quick drink after eating, and as far as first impressions go, I couldn't speak highly enough of The Hoxton. With a really welcoming atmosphere and cosy interiors, it's almost like arriving at a home from home as soon as you set foot through the door. We settled in a lovely little ante-room, opting for a selection of drinks from their mocktail menu, along with a matcha latte for Michelle; the perfect way to finish off the day, especially as the service was so fantastic too. I'm already planning a return visit to sample some of their foodie options! 

Have you visited The Hoxton? 

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)

15.11.2017- On the Menu: The Tea House, Reigate

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Week to week, it's really rare that I get a chance to explore some of the lovely locations right on my doorstep. If I've got a free weekend, the likelihood is that I'll be so tired from the week just gone that I'll prioritise recharging my batteries above heading out of the house, but last weekend I was determined to make the most of some unexpected free time and visit some close-to-home-comforts. Reigate is a lovely market town just a short hop away by bus or train, and as well as being beloved as a location where I spent some of my most formative years (at college!), it's home to some great shops, a wonderfully comfortable cinema and a selection of delicious dining options too. One of my favourites is The Tea House- a favourite bolthole during my college days- so I was really excited to return over the weekend:

Needless to say, The Tea House is my idea of heaven. With a plentiful supply of tea and cake, as well as a really wonderful selection of staple favourites encompassing everything from smoked salmon and scrambled eggs to ice cream sundaes, it really does offer some of the tastiest options in town. A creature of habit to the last, I ordered the classic fish finger sandwich, served with salad and some crisps on the side-heavenly! With a warm pot of freshly brewed Early Grey and polished off with a generous slice of salted caramel and chocolate cake, this was the perfect way to brighten up a gloomy Saturday afternoon, and I'm sure it won't be too long until I make a return visit! 

Where your favourite local locations? 

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)

13.11.2017- Beauty Buys: Nars Skin Optimal Brightening Concentrate

Monday, 13 November 2017

And, as if by some Game of Thrones style magic, we find ourselves well and truly in the grip of winter. Brrrr. I feel like all I've done for the last week or so is complain to anyone who will listen about just how cold I'm finding it, but sitting on the sofa wrapped up in thermals and fleecy socks with the curtains closed at 4pm yesterday afternoon really reminded me how little I like this time of the year. As well as making me resemble the Michelin man in terms of layering, winter also means that my skin tends to go into panic mode- dry and lacklustre, verging on the paler side of grey. In an attempt to combat this, as well as embracing some new deep cleansing treats, I've also added a step to my morning routine which is really helping to keep the outlook as bright as possible: 

Before now, I'd never used any of Nars' skincare range, preferring instead to reach for their colour cosmetics- namely blushers and their super covetable eyeshadows. However, after road testing a sample of the Optimal Brightening Concentrate which I got free with a magazine, I was well and truly converted, and snapped up a full sized bottle a few weeks back. I deploy this magic lotion as part of my morning routine after moisturising, and it really does work wonders- with only a couple of pumps boosting my complexion and somehow making me look human first thing in the morning. With light reflectors, it's the perfect antidote to the darker days, and although it's a little on the pricey side, I can see this bottle lasting for months. 

Have you added any new products to your winter skincare routine?

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)
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