GIVE A LITTLE, STYLE

Is your Dad your superhero?

September 3, 2015
60s_Batcave_zps0c5a981b

Every Dad dreams of having his very own ‘man cave’. A private space, where he is free from the stresses of the day-to-day, a place where he can escape for a while and regain his strength. Some of the best man caves in the world are modelled of those owned by superheroes. Whether he is a fan of the Bat Cave, Iron Man’s Stark Towers Penthouse or needs something a little quieter like Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, Father’s Day is the perfect time for you to help Dad unleash that superhero inside.

batman-old-school

11615579_ReevejakoSuperman1max

I have put together my five picks for you Dad to begin to create his very own man cave, after all he’s your superhero and every superhero deserves a place where they can design their ultimate costume and clean their utility belt, sorry I mean, relax and recuperate.

1. Man Cave Chalkboard Print by Almond Tree Designs – $19.95 It is extremely important to establish the space and boundaries of the man cave. Dad will love this humorous chalk board print by Almond Tree Designs. He can hang it in his study, the garage or wherever he has declared in the home ‘man cave’ territory!

mancave

2. Brau Twin Wall Mug 500ml (Set of 2) by Avanti – $19.95 Naturally all superheroes need to hydrate themselves and these 500 ml mugs will be perfect for Dad and his sidekick to enjoy a cold one. They’re double walled for insulation maintaining the temperature, meaning Dad’s beer will stay nice and cold. Plus, they are dishwasher safe and come with ten years warranty.

twin mug

3. Zen Bean Bag Set by Epona – $189.95
A ‘man cave’ needs to be a laid back and relaxed space, where Dad’s stress and troubles can fade away. I can assure you, he will love lounging on his very own Zen Bean Bag Set by Epona. Crafted from PU Ostrich leather, the Zen Bean Bag Set is strong, durable but still superhero comfortable.

seat

4. 746 Traditional Retro Rotary Dialling Telephone by GPO – $119.95
I am sure your Dad will remember the 1960s version of Batman. Just to put it into perspective, a typical episode usually began with Commissioner Gordon, along with Chief O’Hara contacting Batman about the peril that Gotham City is facing via the Batphone – a bright red telephone that provides a direct phone link to Batman. Well guess what? Dad can now have his very own Batphone! These vintage style phones by GPO are designed to look exactly like phones of the past whilst incorporating modern technology to ensure compatibility with modern telephone lines. So Dad can now fight crimes or order himself a pizza – his choice!

phone

5. Chess Set – Small by Café Lighting – $279.95
Although Dad might not have the capacity to turn invisible, stop a bus in its tracks or fly to the moon and back, he can certainly work on his mental endurance and strength. After all, Dads have to endure work stress, family life and finances on a daily basis. The classic game of chess is the perfect way for Dad to challenge his brain whilst enjoying some personal time.

chess

6. Attache Case Turntable/Vinyl Record Player by GPO – $199
The final touch to any man cave is a music system. I am sure Dad, given his age, will love this vintage style suitcase record player from GPO. Made of wood and bound in leatherette, this briefcase styled record player features a built in stereo so you can tune in without needing a speaker system. A USB is also supplied so you can record your favourite vinyl and enjoy it in digital format. How cool is that? Dad’s superhero inspired playlist might include, Snoop Dogg’s ‘Batman & Robin’, Black Sabbath’s ‘Iron Man’, Prince’s ‘Bat Dance’ or Queen’s ‘Flash’ – the choice is his!

turntable

But you better act quick, Father’s Day is just around the corner, but It’s not too late to surprise the superhero in your life. Make your Dad feel extra special this Fathers Day!

BEAUTY + WELLBEING

Spa of the World.. What’s your Ritual?

August 29, 2015
DSC_0715

How wonderful do you feel after a bit of pampering at a spa? Relaxing massages, luxurious body wraps, indulgent hair and face treatments? That feeling of escapism and ultimate relaxation. It’s a beautiful feeling. Once you’ve indulged yourself, you get hooked, well I have! But since I don’t have a limitless bank account, these sorts of trips to spas are for special occasions and when I’m holidaying.

In saying this, it’s still important to treat yourself at home. So what if I told you that you could bring the essence of holiday spa treatments home with you? Are you inspired by Tahiti, Morocco or maybe Japan?

I am so excited to share with you the brand new Spa of the World range by The Body Shop. Their luxurious range of products are inspired by stunning places all over the world and are designed to be used together as a complete ritual. The range is split into three styles of rituals (Blissful – yellow, Revitalising – blue and Relaxation – purple), so if you’re looking to indulge yourself, invigorate your senses or de-stress and calm, there are scrubs, masks, oils and body cremes to feel like you’ve just stepped out of a five-star spa!

I thought I’d share with you my picks from the range, give you a bit of an insight into the ingredients and then give you a sense how to best use them.

Dead Sea Salt Scrub | Revitalising Ritual | $42.95
The scrub is the perfect texture to scrub away dead skin cells, stimulate circulation and invigorate your skin. With its main ingredient being salts from the Dead Sea and plant based oils, it leaves your skin feeling smoother and softer. All you need to do, is apply over wet skin – paying particular attention to drier areas like the elbows and knees and rise off. It has a lovely marine smell.. the perfect pick-me-up!

DSC_0699

Moroccan Rhassoul Body Clay | Revitalising Ritual | $32.95
I love this product so much – if you’re needing to tighten and firm up certain areas, then this body clay is perfect for you. All you do is apply to the body, leave on the skin for 10 minutes, or when the clay has gone hard and then rinse off in the shower using circular motions. Made from Rhassoul clay from The Atlas Mountains in Morocco and is a favourite of Moroccan women for its tightening and firming qualities.

DSC_0703

Polynesian Monoi Radiance Oil | Blissful Ritual | $32.95 
Feel like heading off to the Pacific Islands momentarily? Well when you can come back from your day dream, I can promise radiate skin and shiny hair. The Polynesian Monoi Radiance oil is a beautiful product to use. Used by women of the Pacific Islands for thousands of years, ‘Monoi’ is a blend of coconut oil (ethically sourced from Samoa) and tiare flowers. This multi-purpose oil is a gorgeous body  moisturiser for skin that is absorbed quickly without leaving your skin greasy. If you suffer from dry, brittle or even over coloured hair, then this oil can be used as daily treatment – simply add product to the ends of your hair, like you would a leave-in conditioner – or overnight treatment. After washing your hair, lightly blow dry and add a few drops and sleep with it in.

DSC_0710

Japanese Camellia Cream | Relaxation Ritual | $52.95
I love body butters, cremes and moisturisers and this velvety cream is utterly decadent. Subtly scented of the elegant Camellia flower, you’ll find after applying this luxurious cream, your skin will feel softer, smoother and hydrated. Camellia oil has been used by women of Japan since the eighth century to moisturise their skin and find their inner peace. Relax your soul and find your zen with this beautiful product.

DSC_0687

So I can’t quite give you the tropical getaway or luxury spa treatment that you might’ve been dreaming about recently, but I can assure you The Body Shop’s new Spa of the World Ritual range can help. So live a little and treat yourself to a little DIY spa therapy!

PICT_20150829_180904 copy

Also – another reason to purchase from The Body Shop.. For those that aren’t aware, The Body Shop stand by some incredible values. First and foremost, they are against animal testing, always have been since they were founded by Dame Anita Roddick in 1976. Plus, all their products suitable for vegetarians. Additionally The Body Shop supports a range of community fair trade projects. The company currently has more than 1,200 products, 80% of which contain at least one Community Fair Trade ingredient. Self Esteem campaigns, defending human rights and protection of our planet are all instilled in The Body Shop values. Now, who wouldn’t want to support that?

STYLE

Be ‘geek chic’ with Firmoo!

July 31, 2015
DSC_0782

I love fashion. But then again, which girl doesn’t? As the ever classic Coco Chanel once said, “Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening..” What is wonderful, is that anyone can interpret the term ‘fashion’ how they wish. It’s interchangeable, fluid and completely subjective. With fashion comes accessories – the pièce de résistance and the final touch to an outfit.

One accessory that is often underrated or sometimes overlooked is eyewear – not necessarily sunglasses, but reading glasses! Once considered bland and geeky (especially when I was at school) eyewear is now a perfectly acceptable fashion accessory. Global brands, designers and celebrities have all rushed to be a part of the optical industry. Take Australian designers Alex Perry and Collette Dinnigan. Both have paired up with Specsavers, releasing their own beautiful line of eyewear. But, with these designer brands, come the designer prices. So often shopping for fashionable eyewear can become quite expensive.

I wanted to share with you my experience with Firmoo, the worlds most popular optical online store. What I love about Firmoo, aside from being able to order your lenses online is the fact that you can get that designer look for a fraction of the cost!

DSC_0783DSC_0784

I’m wearing #F1018, a vintage style of lenses in black. These retail for $40.99 (Australian). 

Shopping Process
Shopping with Firmoo is super easy – all the styles are on site, so you can just browse through at your own pace. You can search by colour type, material, size, shape and price. Additionally you can shop in a range of currencies. There is even a super neat feature where you can upload your own picture and ‘try’ the glasses on.

Ordering Process
Purchasing your glasses is like purchasing anything online. It’s really simple and easy to use. In regards to your prescription you can either upload it or manually enter your prescription details. Payment is via credit card or your Paypal account. My glasses arrived within 2 weeks.

I know it seems odd purchasing glasses online, but there are so many styles and options on Firmoo you’re completely spoilt for choice. Plus, all the glasses are under $70, so you’re bagging yourself a bargain. You can keep changing your look as and when it suits!

I am loving my Firmoo glasses and if you’re a specs wearer, then I thoroughly recommend you have a look next time you’re wanting to update your eyewear. For those who don’t wear glasses, you can still shop their awesome sunglasses range.

Live a little and embrace your inner ‘chic geek’!

BEAUTY + WELLBEING

The Best of Beauty – The July Edition!

July 24, 2015
sophie

So over the past month or so, I’ve been trialing and testing a range of unique beauty products, and I can assure you they’re perfect to get you through the last remaining weeks of winter. I’ve put these picks together as they’ll keep you in tip-top condition from head to toe and inside out. Enjoy!

For the face? Skin B5 Range | @skinb5
So for many of us out there dealing with skin problems is a regular Whether it’s stress, hormones or wearing makeup all day, most of us are prone to breakouts. But for some people, it can be more severe. Some adults have to deal with acne well into their 20s and 30s and some can suffer with body acne, which I can imagine would be so irratating. Whether you occasionally break out or suffer regularly with acne dramas, one of the hardest things is finding products that are natural and still gentle enough for your face/body. As a teen I tried a very well-known acne clearing product that literally burnt top layer off my skin, it was so acidic! I can remember the aftermath was a red, scaly and very sore face. It scarred me for life. The Skin B5 range will certainly not do this to your skin. It’s completely free from benzoyl peroxide, parabens, synthetic fragrances and animal products, is suitable for vegetarians and vegans and is proudly Australian. The Skin B5 range is a four step program made up of acne control tablets (in either normal or extra strength), a cleansing mousse, purifying mask and controlling moisturizer. How you use the program is dependent on how severe your skin problems are. I suffer from standard skin issues, blackheads, occasional breakouts and have quite large pores on my cheeks. After just 3 days, I am starting to see my pores get smaller, any pimples that were there are now drying up and my skins texture is so much more smoother.

DSC_0758 (2)
For the hair? Hair and Me Treatment | @hairandme_
I am loving Hair and Me – it’s 100% organic and completely natural. Perfect for combatting frizz, split ends and breakage, it works to repair, strengthen and moisturise your hair whilst also stimulating the scalp for hair growth. I have super thick hair and when it’s time for that mid week wash, I get so frustrated because I have to allow at least an hour to just dry and style my hair. But, the best the thing about Hair and Me, is that helps reduce that tedious blow drying time by 30-50%! The consistency of the treatment is quite oily (because it is so natural), so I wouldn’t recommend using the whole lot in one go – you’ll get a few treatments out of one pack. Hair and Me can be used on coloured and highlighted hair as well as hair extensions.

DSC_0759 (2)
For the body? StayLean Tea’s 14 and 28 Day Detox | @stayleantea
There are many forms of ‘detox teas’ out there on the market at the moment. What is scary, is that many contain laxatives. This can be extremely trying on your body often leading to stomach pains, frequent trips to the ladies and dehydration. I must stress that these sort of detox’s should not be used for weight loss purposes, which I see so many young girls do. However, if you’re looking at doing a detox or a tea cleanse, then consider StayLean. All the ingredients are 100% natural and contain no laxatives what so ever. I am currently in the process of completing my 14 day detox and starting to see results. I am looking less bloated and feeling slightly more cleansed. Staylean recommend that you drink 2-3 litres of water during the detox and maintain a healthy and balanced diet throughout the process. I must stress again, that everyone’s results are different, so bear this is mind if you choose to commence one.

DSC_0763 (2)
For the feet? Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter by Lush | @lush_ausnz
I am the ultimate Lush fan and have been for many years. They are so ethically conscious about their products in every way from the packaging to the ingredients. Lemony Flutter is one the thickest creams I have ever come across – it’s almost the same consistency as paste. Although advertised as ‘cuticle butter’, Lemony Flutter also works wonders on dry and cracked feet. Just before bed, I slather my feet in the stuff and then put a pair of socks on straight away. When I wake in the morning, my feet feel soft, supple and as a bonus smell like limoncello!

DSC_0768 (2)
I am all for supporting natural, eco-friendly and Australian health and beauty brands and I know after reading this, you’ll be super keen to try some of these out. Perhaps you’re already using some of these products and I would love to hear from you! Or maybe you’re an up and coming brand? I would love to try your range! Either way, I love to hear from my readers.

As always, live a little! x

SOCIAL, TRAVEL

A Quintessential English Wedding..

June 23, 2015
DSC_1029

How wonderful are weddings? Aside from the suits, dresses, delicious wedding cake and fabulous food, I love the atmosphere – there is always so much positivity in the air. It’s so lovely to see friends, family and loved ones all come together with one cause of celebration in mind.

I don’t often post personal events on my blog, but this was so worth sharing. Part of my travels earlier in the year was to celebrate my partners’ cousin, Emily and her marriage to her now husband Russ. They were married at St Peters, with her reception at the very grand Dumbleton Hall. Em looked absolutely phenomenal and everything about the day was perfect. From the horse drawn carriage, to the Worcestershire countryside setting, the beautiful wedding cake to the very emotional speeches.

It was a very special day and judging by the photos you can certainly see why.. Enjoy! X

GIVE A LITTLE

Give a little – CEO Sleepout 2015.

June 15, 2015
2015-VCEOSO-FB-ad2

Media today is so accessible, and with that accessibility often comes information overload. Naturally charitable organisations can use social media and the internet platform to create awareness and drive donations and it can often all just be all too much. But on this occasion, I would really appreciate if you could read through this post.. I know this may come across as another ‘charity’ pull, but this particular cause is very close to my heart.

For those that know me and my family, most of you would be aware that my father, Philip Crenigan contributes to the Vinnies’ CEO Sleepout every year. For those that aren’t aware of what this entails, it is one night a year where managing directors, CEOs and key business players come together and experience sleeping out on the streets. Over the past decade, they have managed to raise over 10 million dollars to assist St Vincent De Paul and there fight to stop homelessness in this country. In it’s tenth year, Vinnies’ are aiming to raise 10 million dollars.

If you’re new to this whole concept, I thought it might be interesting for you to hear my father’s thoughts and insights from his experience of the CEO Sleepout 2014.


Still a taboo issue, it’s important to be very clear that homelessness exists in this country, with over 100,000 people sleeping on the streets every night. Faced with difficult decisions on a daily basis, many of Australia’s homeless have choices to make. Will they forego food tonight for shelter? Should they purchase a blanket or new clothes this week? Where can they sleep where they don’t have to incur travel costs, but feel safe and warm?

For us, these aren’t decisions, we have our home, our dinner tonight and clothes to wear tomorrow. What is fantastic and really homing in on this issue, is at this years CEO Sleepout, all participants will receive Vinnies CEO Sleepout Dollars. They then will have the opportunity to speak to caseworkers to hear about some of the real choices that many of Australia’s homeless face.

All participants will not receive enough dollars to access all the small comforts like food, cardboard and sleeping bags, so they will have to think long and hard about what is important to get them through the night. Perhaps they will have to sacrifice their meal? We’ll see.

Once again, I understand that you are bombarded with messaging and imagery from many organisations, but I ask that on this occasion you might be able to spare a few dollars and assist my dad in his endeavours at this years CEO Sleepout.

Given that he the sole owner and representative of his business Executive Turning Point, every year he reaches his target. At this moment in time, he is $600 off his $10,000 goal, so if you wish to show your support, please do so by clicking here. Please help him and all the other participants as they all come together to stamp out homelessness in this country.

Don’t forget, giving a little will contribute to living a little.

I am so proud of him and hopefully you are too.

TRAVEL

My London Love Affair!

June 9, 2015
We fell in love with this awesome pub, just around the corner from our hotel.

I am so proud to call London my hometown. It’s a city that just has got it right. Between the hundreds of dining options, beautiful shops, cultural stops, architecture and history everything about the city works. It was wonderful to spend a long weekend there, so here’s what we got up to.

It was a short but sweet encounter with the city. I was so devastated that I had to leave. Especially when I know there are so many other places to explore, to see and to try. London speaks for itself and I recommend it entirely.

It will certainly not be my last affair with London. After all, it is my hometown and that in itself is a perfect reason to go back.

Happy travels! X

TRAVEL

Dubai Dreaming..

May 30, 2015
DSC_0637

After a whirlwind trip made up of four countries, multiple flights, plenty of driving and a wedding somewhere in the middle, in less than a month, I’ve made it. I am officially home.

When I think back to my first stop, Dubai it seems like ages ago! But going through my photos, all my memories of that magical place has come flooding back.

I spent just over 48 hours in Dubai on the way over to Europe. I figured a little stop over would break up the journey. Plus, I’ve never been and have heard so much about the place. My verdict? Dubai is incredible. Aside from it’s sheer size, which quite literally floored me when I arrived, it has everything. Shopping malls, day trips, beaches, bars, nightclubs, a marina, ice skating rink, indoor skiing centre, polo club.. The list could go on! And yet, has this amazing capacity to function in 35-50 degree heat.

So to start of my recent adventure, I figured a mini photo journal would give you an insight into my brief rendezvous with the Arabic state.

I stayed at the Park Hyatt Dubai. Since we were only there for a couple of days and the fact that we arrived so late I thought it best to pick a hotel not to far away (15 mins approx). The Park Hyatt is set right next to the Dubai Creek and Marina where you can sit out at the bar and be amazed by the hundreds of luxury yachts. In relation to Dubai City, the hotel is a little far away, but on the same token, it was so nice to be away from the hustle and bustle. The hotel itself boasts a gym, a beautiful pool, a luxury day spa, golf course, conference rooms and a range of restaurants. The rooms were big and very luxurious with all your typical five-star inclusions like robes, slippers, bath products, mini bar, pressing services and what not.

A range of restaurants and bars at the Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club are also in walking distance. I highly recommend the Mediterranean Boardwalk Restaurant for a beautiful dinner overlooking the water and then partying on at the Cielo Sky Lounge. Aside from awesome music and absolutely stunning cocktails, Cielo looks like something from the future with it’s glowing blue lights, white furniture and sleekness. The rooftop terrace is accessed by a VIP lift and gives patrons a beautiful view of the Dubai skyline. On the bar note, another place you must make time for, is the 360 Degrees Bar in the Jumeirah Beach Hotel. In relation to our hotel, it was about a 20 minute taxi ride, as you have to head to the beach. And then you have to go through the hotel lobby, down past the pool, all the way down a super long boardwalk (heels so not recommended). But when we arrived, it was so worth it. The views are breath taking and if you’re wanting to get snaps of the super luxurious Burj Al Arab, then you can kill two birds with one stone as it’s right there slap bang in front of you. A perfect way to watch the sun go down over the Persian Gulf. Both an absolute must.

Attractions wise, we visited the Dubai Mall, went up the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa (half a kilometre in the air!) and visited the Gold Souks. All worth doing, but on the same token, it would be perfectly acceptable to just relax in your hotel.

So.. my Dubai tips?

  • It really is hot. I know people say, “oh I can handle the heat”.. but be prepared. Especially around midday and early afternoon. It can get blistering. Always have water with you. Dehydration is awful.
  • Don’t underestimate its size! Dubai is MASSIVE. It took us ages to drive from the Marina to the Burj Al Arab, thinking it was just down the street. If you’re wanting to get around the city, taxis are fine, but just be wary of how far you have to go.
  • Try a shisha. Although originating from Turkey, the staff in Dubai certainly know how to throw a shisha party! My recommendation, grape and mint flavour, but ask the staff to only put a little bit of mint. It’s perfectly acceptable in bars and a very social thing to do.
  • Be conscious of alcohol prices. Wine in particular. In some places, wine was costing us $35.00 Australian dollars a GLASS. If you’ve got the cash, by all means spend away, but just be wary if you’re on a budget.

All in all, I thoroughly recommend actually getting off the plane and enjoying a stop over as I had a really lovely stay in Dubai – it was new, exciting, bold and very different to what I expected. But I haven’t had the opportunity to visit the other Arab states yet, so next time would be keen to do somewhere new like Oman or Abu Dhabi to compare..

Keep an eye out for my next travel post, my love affair with London!

But in the meantime, live a little and get travel inspired! X

BEAUTY + WELLBEING

Beauty Bites to beat the Winter Blues!

April 27, 2015
DSC_0552

So if you haven’t noticed the weather this week, then you really have been hibernating.  It’s been wet, it’s windy and at times very frightening. My thoughts goes out to all those people still affected by the storms. Aside from the out-of-control conditions, I want to attempt to find some positive attributes to the winter months.

Without a doubt I can welcome winter into my life with open arms purely for the fashion. Yes bring out your ankle boots, skinny jeans, cashmere scarves and beautiful coats! Secondly, the fact it is perfectly acceptable to be walking around with hot beverages in your hands – coffee, tea, chai lattes and hot chocolates. Thirdly, comfy movie nights are a legitimate excuse to save yourself from going out. On those chilly nights, when you cannot face the idea of clubbing, you can trade your party dresses for flannelette pyjamas with your Ugg boots. You can wrap yourself up in a blanket and watch romantic comedies whilst eating as much popcorn as you can possibly handle.

But.. from a beauty perspective, winter can wreak havoc on your hair, skin and nails. All I need to say it dryness. Eurgh. I know it’s easy to lag behind with your beauty regime during the winter months, but it’s really important to be vigilant. Keeping everything moisturised is only going to benefit you in the long run. So I have been sourcing some of beauty’s best for you to get you through the cooler months. Here are my picks:

Body Essential Silicea Ultra One a Day Capsules
It’s really important that you take care of your body from the inside as well. We focus so much on the outside using exfoliants, moisturisers, deodorants, topical lotions etc, but often forget that often our appearance on the outside is reflective of what’s going on inside. I want to introduce you to Silicea Capsules. Packed full of goodness, with specifically selected ingredients these tablets will assist in supple skin, healthier hear, stronger nails, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joint cartilage. Really easy to use, you just take one capsule a day. I am currently a fortnight in and have started to notice that my skin is smoother and my hair seems less frizzy. Considering the course of tablets run for a month, I am yet to see the full effects, but will keep you posted!

DSC_0558
Where can I buy it? Okay you can purchase Silicea Ultra at most health food stores, chemists and pharmacies. Generally retails for around $30.

H2Coco Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is all the rage right now – you can eat it, cook with it, slather yourself with it because you know what? It’s so good for you! Coconuts and their contents are considered especially hydrating and therefore amazing for your skin in the winter months. In fact, they’re so hydrating that in some hospitals in third world countries, when they have limited access to saline for their IVs, they will turn to coconut water as a substitute. So on that note, meet H2Coco, an Aussie company spreading the coconut love. As well as their coconut water (which is delicious) they sell their organic virgin coconut oil. I am completely obsessed and it smells divine. I am currently putting it on as a moisturiser straight after my shower. My skin is so soft, really supple and feeling less scaly.

DSC_0566

Where can I buy it? So you can purchase H2Coco Organic Virgin Coconut Oil from pharmacies, chemists and most health food stores. If you’re wanting to purchase online, you can direct from H2Coco here. It retails anywhere between $12 – 17.

Jane Iredale Hand Drink Hand Cream
I think it’s so important to always carry a hand cream with you at all times. Your poor hands have so much day to day contact. Just think, washing your hands with cheap soap, handling money, doing your dishes. Then throw natures elements in and your hands certainly get a battering. I hate greasy hand creams though, there’s nothing worse than that slimy feeling. HandDrink by Jane Ireldale is perfect and doesn’t leave that residue. Infused with ingredients, plant extracts and antioxidants, it’s like carrying around a mini mask for your hands! Another bonus is the fact that it has sun protection too, SPF 15. I also love the fact that it’s not overly scented – it has a very delicate rose smell, but isn’t over powering.

DSC_0554

Where can I buy it? So you can purchase this beautiful hand cream from my friends at Ry.com.au. One of the biggest cosmetics and beauty product suppliers in the country. They are quick with ordering and delivery and offer a fantastic service. Hand Drink normally retails for $58, but is currently on special at $49.30.

Lanolips Banana Balm 3-in-1
I am so in love with this product. Hands down, it’s amazing. Apart from the fact it smells just like a banana smoothie, it’s SO good for your lips. It comes out quite thick from the tube, but when applied, gives a beautiful sheen to your lips. I’ve even been wearing it as a lip gloss! It doesn’t dry out your lips, in fact it conditions them. It’s creamy, fluffy and absolutely delicious!

DSC_0556

Where can I buy it? So if you need your banana smoothie hit, you can pick up the Lanolips Banana Balm 3-in-1 again from my friends at Ry.com.au. This product is absolutely divine and retails at $15.95. Oh and if you spend over $99.00 with them (which is easy to do) you get free standard shipping. Awesome!

Wink Eyelash & Eyebrow Enhancer
I know that eyelash extensions are all the rage at the moment, but if not done properly can be seriously damaging. Additionally, if you’re a mascara wearer, on a day-to-day basis, it can be so dehydrating to your eyelashes. So there often and not, you do need to give them a break and treat them. Another restoring product I want to introduce to you is Wink Eyelash & Eyebrow Enhancer, a US based product that helps revitalise eyelashes and eyebrows. If you have over plucked your eyebrows or find that your hairs are falling out or simply just want to thicken them up, then you most certainly need to use Wink. Applied daily, it’s really easy to use. On first glance, it looks like a mascara tube but actually has a pump action brush. A couple of clicks to get the enhancer going and you simply apply along your eyelash line and eyebrows. I’ve been using the enhancer for the past two weeks and have noticed that I haven’t been relying on my mascara as often as I used to. Super happy!

DSC_0564

Where can I buy it? Given that it is a US based product, the best way to purchase is direct from them here. Each tube costs $39.00 US with each tube lasting for 3 months. By signing up for a quarterly subscription, you can save and you will automatically be shipped a new tube of Wink every 3 months. Easy peasy!

So there you have it, my beauty bites to beat the winter blues. I hope there is a few products in my picks that tickle your fancy. I am loving using all of these and I know you will too!

Stay beautiful x

BEAUTY + WELLBEING

Your perfect glow – the TanOrganic way.

April 16, 2015
TanOrganic

How good does it feel to have a tan? Supposedly it makes you look healthier, apparently thinner and gives us mere mortals a little confident boost. However, the Australian sun is harsh, extremely harsh. And as we know, thanks to the very clever campaign from the Cancer Institute, there is nothing healthy about a tan. Aside from the severe long term effects, people forget the tremendous amount of instant trauma to the skin when sunbathing.

So, what if you could have a beautiful false tan that could rival the suns very rays, that not only is good for your skin but also organic? On top of that, no fake tan smells and no streaking?

Meet TanOrganic, my new best friend. Hailing from Ireland, TanOrganic is the latest tanning range to hit the shelves. Completely organic, the range is ethically made, environmentally friendly and PETA approved. Aside from being a beautiful colour, it’s the perfect tanning product if you’re conscious about what you’re putting into your body. Were you aware that 64% of what we put on our skin ends up in our bloodstream? Picture all the deodorants, moisturisers, body washes, soaps, cleansers, cosmetics (I could go on and on here..) that are packed full of synthetic ingredients that us women use everyday.

A little different to your standard tanning brands, TanOrganic is designed for those who wish to gradually build their tans. Plus it’s 84% Aloe Vera, meaning your skin is getting a much needed hydration boost and fades away beautifully.

To cut to the chase, I thought the best way to demonstrate the TanOrganic range is a video review. Oh and thankyou to my dear friend Brooke, who has kindly offered to be my tanning model.

Live a Little TV: TanOrganic Review from Sophie Crenigan (Livealittle.TV) on Vimeo.

Overall, I loved the product and what I love the most is that is not only good for your skin, but great for the environment and to our furry friends. In comparison to some products colour wise, it is significantly lighter and for some they may not get that dramatic effect. But what it does mean, is you can gradually build up your colour and have a little bit more control over the end result. The only other con I could think of is that you are required to leave it on for 6-8 hours. In comparison there are some brands out there that now claim to develop in 1 hour. But, it doesn’t smell, dries really fast and you can sleep in it. I noticed that TanOrganic didn’t stain your sheets, so you can justify leaving it on.

So if you’re conscious about the cosmetics you purchase, curious to try something new or simply looking for a golden glow, then TanOrganic is the perfect choice and is available in Myer and Woolworths Beauty Concept Stores.

Happy tanning! x

tanorganic

BEAUTY + WELLBEING

In my eyes, it’s always time for tea!

March 24, 2015
DSC_0716

If you are cold, tea will warm you;
if you are too heated, it will cool you;
If you are depressed, it will cheer you;
If you are excited, it will calm you.”
– William Ewart Gladstone


I am English and without a doubt if you’re English, you must love tea. I have grown up having tea all my life. One of my fondest memories was when I would fly home and visit my grandparents, within seconds of me arriving, the kettle would be on and my Nan would already have the teacups at the ready. Now, it’s a daily routine for me. I love English breakfast blends, chai teas, herbal and green and aside from the social aspect of having “a cuppa”, there are plenty of health benefits to drinking tea too.

Were you aware that tea are packed full of antioxidants? I guess the best way to explain is, antioxidants combat ageing and the long-term effects of pollution. Plus tea has less caffeine than coffee. If you suffer from headaches, body aches or the shakes after that cappuccino it may be due to too much caffeine, so make the switch to tea. Drinking tea may help keep your arteries clear and buildup free. A 5.6-year study from the Netherlands found a 70 percent lower risk of fatal heart attack in people who drank at least two to three cups of black tea daily compared to non-tea drinkers. So who would have thought? Something that tastes so delicious is actually benefitting your body!

My friends at Tetley have such a diverse range of teas and I thought I’d give you the lowdown on some of my favourites. Now some tea drinkers prefer black tea and others herbal, chai or green. Either way, Tetley’s range is so extensive you’ll be spoilt for choice.

For my black tea fans I would like to introduce to you two choices from Tetley’s Tea Master’s Selection, the Assam and the Kenyan blends.

The Assam region is a lush tropical rainforest climate in northern India, in the lower foothills surrounding the pristine Himalayas. This location makes for richly textured soil, which translates into a woody, earthy tea that practically oozes with robust, full-bodied flavour. Delicious!

The Kenyan blend is grown in the sunny, rich highlands near Mount Kenya. With its snow capped peaks, these teas are cultivated by independent farmers who grow tea on small plots. The taste can be described as nutty, naturally sweet tea, with an alluring complex flavour.

For those that prefer a herbal blend or flavoured teas, I would suggest Tetley’s Infusions range. These teas are naturally caffeine free and are bursting with flavour. My favourites? Cinnamon Orange and Forest Fruits.

When it comes to Cinnamon Orange, all I can say is Christmas! Starting with naturally caffeine-free rooibos leaves, they add cinnamon, orange blossoms & orange peel, plus warming spices like star anise, cardamon and cloves. When you brew the tea, it smells like the holiday season and instantly takes you back to Christmas! A Christmas that you can enjoy no matter the month!

Do you like berries? Strawberries? Raspberries and Cherries? Well I would definitely point you in the direction of Forest Fruits. This tea is bright, uplifting tea. With a blend of berries, poppy flowers, hibiscus and a touch of apple, Forest Fruits will certainly brighten up a dull afternoon.

There are plenty of other teas out there for you to try, but I wanted to give you a little introduction. After all, it’s starting to feel a little chiller. So next time you’re faced with a dull afternoon, maybe it’s raining outside and is looking a little icky, grab your jammies, a big cosy blanket and rug up on the couch with a good book and a cup of tea. I’ll leave you with a divine quote that really sums up in essence that fuzzy yet comforting feeling when you make yourself a cup of tea.


Surely everyone is aware of the divine pleasures which attend a wintry fireside; candles at four o’clock, warm hearthrugs, tea, a fair tea-maker, shutters closed, curtains flowing in ample draperies to the floor, whilst the wind and rain are raging audibly without.”
– Thomas De Quincy.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

SOCIAL

It’s about love when it comes to the Holden Cruze!

March 8, 2015
HoldenCruze_3.3.15-3

You can learn a lot from someones driving habits, can’t you? Are you a control freak? Do you suffer from road rage? A speed demon? Or are you more comfortable being driven? Did you know that 73% of Australian men prefer to be in the driving seat, with women just at 58%.

So imagine having your first date behind the wheel. Certainly a strange place to consider meeting someone for the first time, but that is exactly what Aussie car manufacturer Holden did. Parallel to the launch of their brand new Holden Cruze, the team held a very interesting social experiment based on the premise, “you don’t know someone until you drive with them”.

Held last Tuesday evening at The Bourbon, in iconic Potts Point, guests were treated to the unveiling of the brand new Holden Cruze, and witnessed Holden’s social experiment unfold. A number of singles were paired by Holden to attend blind dates in the new-look Cruze. Not necessarily, the most obvious or the first date choice by most I would imagine, the couples had set driving tasks to complete whilst navigating themselves to an end destination, all whilst trying to get to know each other AND handling the pressure of being put in a car together! Oh and I forgot to mention that the couples were filmed for the judges and guests to see!

Whilst the dates were shown on the big screen, each couple was scored based on their initial impression of each other, interaction throughout the blind date, overall chemistry and body language. Judged by relationships expert and psychologist, Dr. Peter Jonason and former Miss Universe Australia, Laura Dundovic, they had the task to decide which pair showed the most promise as a couple. In my eyes (and I think the judges too) there was a couple that really deserved to win and that was Loretta Jacob and Aashish Chopra. Aside from being completely adorable, they really did seem to have a lot of chemistry, even sharing a kiss at the event!

You need to decide for yourself, which couple do you think deserved the prize? Watch all the dates here. But the victors on the night, Aashish and Loretta scored themselves a luxury weekend away in the Hunter Valley and the opportunity to drive the Cruze for 3 months!

So, you might still be asking, why exactly did Holden do this social experiment? Sean Poppitt, the director of communications of Holden summed it up perfectly, “the social experiment was a unique way of communicating Cruze’s strengths as a connected, feature packed car that would take away some of the tension points that traditionally play up between couples on the road.”

As for the car, it’s packed full of features and looks beautiful and you’ve got to see it for yourself. Now if you’re planning to purchase a car, certainly take the new Cruze for a test drive*.

Show the Holden Cruze some love!

*Love cannot be guaranteed, however driving a Cruze around may be able to help, after it is now a perfectly acceptable way of conducting a first date!

STYLE

A tribute to summer as we say adios!

March 2, 2015
Photography: Stella Thai, Styling: Ellie in the Sky, MUA: Ali Stadler, Model: Myself & Ashleigh Atkins, Location: Bronte Beach

So summer left us this weekend. I must admit, I was pretty devastated. It’s Monday, the second day of March and instantly feels cooler, strange how that always happens?

I thought a photographic tribute would suffice as we say adios to the warmer months. I featured in this editorial a couple of years ago and when ever I look through the images, it just screams Aussie summer. I am not sure if it’s the bikinis, the surfboard or the quintessential beach location (we shot it at Bronte Beach) but I can remember Ashleigh and I having an absolute ball. We got to sun bake, frolic in the water and eat icy poles – a typical beach day that I know everyone loves.

I hope you find some summer solace in these like I do..

Until next time summer! X

BEAUTY + WELLBEING, GIVE A LITTLE

‘Colour for a Cause’ for Ovarian Cancer Australia..

February 14, 2015
PICT_20150213_142534

Did you know that in Australia, 1400 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer, with more than 1000 sadly losing their battle with the disease? That’s one woman every eight hours. When I read this statistic, I was shocked. It pains me to think that ovarian cancer has the lowest survival rate of any women’s cancer and unfortunately there has been no significant change in treatment options for women who are diagnosed since the 1970s.

However, ‘Ovarian Cancer Australia‘ have just launched a National Action Plan for ovarian cancer research, with a focus on setting out urgent priorities of this research. Additionally, between 2013 and 2016, the organisation wants to grow their support, awareness and advocacy.

So, how can you, I or anyone else make a difference? Well, it’s the small steps and  the power of many that can truly make a difference. As an anonymous author once said,“It is a fact that in the right formation, the lifting power of many wings can achieve twice the distance of any bird flying alone.”

 I am thrilled to be a part of the ‘Colour for a Cause’ campaign – something that you can be a part of too. Aussie beauty label, Designer Brands Cosmetics and Chemmart Pharmacy have joined forces to release a beautiful teal and snow white nail polish pack. Together, they have kindly decided that all proceeds will support the amazing work that ‘Ovarian Cancer Australia’ is doing to help women diagnosed with the disease. (On a another quick note, I am extremely pleased to say that Designer Brands Cosmetics do not test on animals, in fact, their products are vegan!)

Please show your support and purchase one of these packs for just $6.99 from any Chemmart Pharmacy across the country. Throughout the month of February, you can also purchase them online here – with free shipping too!

It may only feel like a small contribution, but giving a little certainly goes a long way.

GASTRONOMY, SOCIAL

The Relaunch of ‘Circa 1876’..

February 2, 2015
What's a garden party without a little champagne shower?

One of my favourite places in Australia without a shadow of a doubt is NSW’s Hunter Valley. Aside from having top-notch wineries every where you turn and beautiful accommodation options, it actually is a foodie’s delight. Boasting some of Australia’s award winning restaurants and fine dining eateries, the Hunter will tempt you with a range of dining options.

This weekend, I experienced no different at the revamped and renamed ‘Circa 1876’ (née Roberts Circa 1876). Matt and Karlie Cowley, CEOs of both Peppers Covent and Circa 1876 hosted a spectacular garden party to christen the newly named venue. It was a perfect opportunity to hear from Matt all about the renaming and a chance to hear from George Francisco, the internationally acclaimed executive chef about the future plans of the restaurant.

So why the new name? As Matt put it in his speech, the removal of Roberts is not meant to be rude in anyway towards the previous executive chef, Robert Molines. It has been eight years since Robert was in the kitchen and simply, it was time for a change.

Notoriously known for their fresh produce, Circa 1876 use only seasonal produce grown from the organic kitchen garden on site, as well as sourcing only the finest local produce. What I took from the menu was not only the freshness and taste, but beautiful presentation.

Many congratulations to both Matt and Karlie Cowley and George Francisco for hosting such a stunning event. Everything from the food, to the drink menu and service was spot on and from what I could see, guests were always smiling. A wonderful evening to mark the name a of a new era at ‘Circa 1876’.