Dark Side

The Boy once said to me that whatever I do with my hair, I’ll always be a redhead. Which is probably true. But given the drama of this last year, I wanted to enter my head into the Witness Protection Programme and shake the red off altogether… at least for now.

4 hours, 2 hairdressers, 2 glasses of rosé and much worrying (!) later, I was transformed from this…

11330029_10153356749344571_7093472170406301141_n 10612940_10153391979179571_1275745242549237200_n

To this…

11667542_10153483438914571_8575878421704313221_n 11698820_10153483462874571_3833639060238593167_n 11667541_10153484690199571_4442497903517175541_n

It was a bit of a shock and a totally different look, but I’m really enjoying feeling like a different person… just getting used to needing to use a new makeup palette now!

I think I’m a lot braver now about radical transformations, and I already have my next one lined up for if I ever get bored of being dark!

What’s your most radical hair transformation? Do you use haircuts to make you feel like you’ve changed your life?!

B

CampNaNoWriMo – July 2015

11144455_10153476769384571_8684067458843882756_oIt’s that time of year again.

CampNaNoWriMo is 30 days of writing intensively so that you come out with a sketchy first draft of a novel at the end. Click for a Map to the Month to help get you started : )

This pic is the cover sketch for the project I’m working on this time around. It was really nice to get something finished when I took part in April, so I wanted to get another first draft done for July.

Anyone else taking part this time around?!

I don’t think I’m going to be able to do it in November as I’m going to be studying law alongside my full time job then, so I can’t definitely commit to doing it then.

If you need a bit of inspiration, I love listening to and looking at this while I write:

Campfire video and sounds

B xoxo

Liebster Award

liebster-awardThank you to the lovely Ella of Rogue Vogue who nominated feixy for a Liebster award here.

My nominations

Before I answer the tagged q&a, I am going to nominate these fabulous ladies for the award:

1. Whimsical mumblings

2. Katie Jane online

3. Beauty Queen UK

So for my Liebster, I was tagged to answer the following questions…

Stranded on a desert Island? Three things you’d have with you?

Definitely my phone. I’m never anywhere without it. A good book. And earl grey teabags! Can’t live without them!

What is your favorite plant/flower?

Ummmmmmmm…. I like orchids. Or the really dark red roses. I quite like lilies too, maybe because they’re death flowers, ha. I’m quite morbid sometimes! Although peonies and sweetpeas are cute too. I dunno. I used to not be into this stuff at all but since I’ve moved into a white fairly minimalist styled flat I like them to brighten things up.

Why is that your favorite?

Orchids seem exotic-y and remind me of holidays. Dark red roses are just gorgeous, smell amazing, are my favourite colour, and remind me of dark things and passion and crazy and stuffffs. Also I used to be allowed to grow roses when I was little. (I’m not greenfingered now though ha!) And peonies and sweetpeas, like I said, add colour to my fairly blank canvas flat!

What do you read blogs for?

I started mostly as a way of getting makeup tutorials and fitness tips, but now I really like them for loads of things – recipes, decor and craft ideas, other peoples’ creative writing and experiences… Cheaper than magazines ;)

What is your go-to product?

Can I have two? Pleaaaase? Kate Moss Rimmel London lipstick in 107. And bobbi brown illuminating eye brightner concealer in light bisque.

I’m also obsessed with my black gel liner from H&M right now. But I guess three is cheating…?

Why did you start your blog?

It just spun out from me always having written different stuff, talking rubbish… random, really.

Your ultimate goal in life?

To finish and publish my novels. And to find some kind of balance where depression, BDD and mild BPD don’t affect my day to day life too negatively.

What is your favorite genre of music?

Ridiculous question. I love loads – jazz, classical, prog rock, alternative, indie, folk… you name it.

What’s your pet hate in terms of other humans’ bad habits?

People who chew with their mouths open! And people who are late, or don’t RSVP. Common courtesy kids. 

Those responding to Liebster tag:

  • Link back to the blogger that nominated you
  • Answer the questions
  • Nominate other new blogs
  • Create your own questions to be answered
  • Notify your nominees when published

Your questions:

If you had 5 minutes left to live, who would you call to say goodbye?

Where is your favourite place you have visited?

Favourite colour?

Why?

Love or romance?

Adventure or contentment?

If you were an animal, what would you be?

What’s your favourite album and why?

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

What did you have for breakfast this morning?

Enjoy.

B xoxo

Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide Review – Weeks 1-3

So you have probably heard me banging on (and on, and ON) about Kayla Itsines recently.

My boyfriend and colleagues are sick of it.

But being a little bit crazy and having spent years on every fad diet ever, time as a bulimic as a teenager and being thin with no muscle to being curvy/chunkier now and hating on it, plus living with BDD for 14+ years if not longer, it’s nice to have a productive routine to focus on that is 1) healthy and 2) gets results, but most importantly FITS around actually having a job and a life and not spending a fortune on crazy equipment / supplements / whatever.

Enter Kayla. Am I obsessed? Yes. Is it for everybody? Possibly not. But here’s my review over the last 3 weeks so you can see for yo’self if you want to…

Weeks 1 and 2, I was ALL OVER the Kayla Istines Bikini Body programme. Week 3 and I’ve slacked off. Here’s hoping I get on it a lot more next week. But yeah. Anyway. Here’s my review so far!

B xoxo

Life Lately

11108395_10153428464654571_3620475956465935668_nIt’s been a bit of a mad month – my medicine is finally kicking in, and coupled with a truck load of vitamin supplements that I swear by (D, E and B12 if you’re interested) plus doing my Kayla Itsines workouts throughout the week (full review and vlog for these coming soon!) I’m doing pretty well, all things considered!

I went to a family wedding back in Somerset which was amazing – I hadn’t realised how much I missed my family really, and the Glastonbury lot are amazing. Meeting my niece Isabella has turned me crazy broody!

I had a hair panic before the wedding and learned to do the waterfall twist with this tutorial, and then just fishtailed the side. I think I learned to fishtail from Zoella here.

Now the best bit… so much cuteness!

11426378_10153434931534571_898215541003848935_n 1888528_10153434904384571_7031910618939049033_n

And as if BabyBell wasn’t gorgeous enough, I crashed with my sister from another mister Julia and my almost-brother-in-law, and they’ve got themselves the most adorable kitten… he literally spider cat jumped me, hanging off my dress with his claws out! Painful but still cute.

11188459_10153430127579571_1097684402339829024_n

I’m now at the end of week 2 of Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide and LOVING it. It’s hard work, but definitely worth it, physically and mentally.

11181690_10153437584934571_7576580467480892930_n

And today (Sunday) I did my LISS from Kayla’s programme, had a nice relaxing stretch session and foam roll, and The Boy and I have had a lazy day. Lots of Tomb Raider x-boxing, watching Buffy, shopping for shoes for him on Jermyn St, St James’s, picking up a couple of pressies for me in Waterstones (#bookgeek)

11351137_10153440653349571_3399255925774168491_n10393969_10153439613789571_7576455170573522147_n

My Kayla vlog should be up this week sometime, so watch this space :)

B xoxo

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.04.19

The Bikini Edit

I absolutely love bikinis. Which is hilarious and somewhat unfair given that I look rubbish in one. Admittedly bikinis and BDD don’t mix very well… but I’m working on week 2 of my Kayla Itsines workout programme right now, so who knows? Maybe this will change, and I can reward myself with a new bikini at the end. Not that it really matters blah blah blah. It’s how you feel and all that jazz.

Either way, I am completely obsessed with different bikini styles and actually (no lie) have links to my favourites saved on my favourites bar. I browse them ALL the time.

My FAVOURITE bikini is a really simple one that I bought 2 years ago from Kimberley London – the Brazil, for £65. It’s still available here.

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.03.52

(Yup – that’s me in it below with my arm up on a company holiday… woop woop)

45003_10151755076302700_363414676_n

The new Kimberley London I’m coveting this year is the Barcelona, below:

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.04.19

For more of a budget bikini, but still really nice, I quite like Boux Avenue (and they currently have 25% off selected swimwear [on the day of writing!] so get yo’ asses over there!) I wore my Boux Avenue bikini with blue anchors and stuff on it on my recent Mexico trip, but I’ve had to throw it out now – suncream has destroyed it haha! Beware if you’re fair skinned and wearing a pale bikini is all I’ll say!

The Boux Avenue bikinis I want this year are below:

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.06.42

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.05.51

And finally, for your inner bikini slut… Victoria’s Secret. Obvs. I want both of these!!!! Sadly the leopard one wouldn’t work on me since I’m paper white. So much envy for you tanned girls right now!

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.07.15 Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.07.55

Nastygal has some decent stuff too, while we’re importing from the US… Definitely a fan of these, and love that the one piece isn’t the usual boring thing.

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 20.20.24

Bikinis – where do you get yours? If you have any tips I would LOVE to hear as I genuinely can’t get enough. And I am going to treat myself for my new health regime soon, so help me out :)

B xoxox

Starting Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide & Top 5 Weight Loss Tips

11401338_10153406915724571_2019740909207103397_nAt the moment, I am on a kick to sort myself out. I’m very all or nothing; when I was training to teach fitness I was crazy on it, super clean eating etc, but for the last year or so life has just taken over. It happens.

To get me back on track, I’ve started the Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide. I’ll review this more fully later as I’m only on week 1 at the moment, but for a whole week before that I decided to go sugar free and alcohol free. I’m aiming to keep this up for a month, although I bloody miss G&Ts, especially in this sunny weather!

This post, before I review Kayla Itsines in a week or so, covers the quick and easy habits you can incorporate so that if you don’t want to commit to a specific programme, you can still start your weight loss journey.

#1. Take some time to reset your body

You may not like this one, as it’s the toughest one (so let’s get it over with first). There aren’t any shortcuts. But sugar is like a drug. I saw a documentary (BBC I think) which showed that sugar was more addictive than cocaine when they tested on rats. My week of being totally alcohol free and sugar free (yes, even 11228504_10153414398569571_3565569890404548665_nfructose – no fruit for 7 days either! Lots of veggies!) gave me some time to clean out my system, and even though it really sucks, it helps you break the ‘just one won’t hurt’ mentality that is a slippery (fatty!) slope. Maybe you’re not as extreme and don’t want to give up fruit, but cut out all processed food and alcohol. Which brings me to…

#2. To drink or not to drink? That is the question…

I LOVE alcohol. Champagne, gin, red wine, white wine, vodka, martini, cosmopolitan… you name it. Sadly in the UK it’s hugely ingrained in our social culture too, so the psychological associations of wanting or needing a drink to socialise or celebrate are hard to shake. BUT. It is FULL OF SUGAR, it is essentially EMPTY CALORIES and IT LOWERS YOUR INHIBITIONS making you MORE LIKELY TO OVER INDULGE (or order that cheeky kebab on the way home!)

There’s another catch too. It makes you 76% less efficient at burning fat. Yup. It actually SLOWS DOWN YOUR METABOLISM. A fact I learned from god knows where, but it stuck with me.

So, while you’re shifting your weight, it’s best to give up alcohol as much as possible.

11393058_10153394997464571_6198377023022902421_nIF you can’t leave it entirely, than make sensible substitutions. Spirits are only 50 kcals per shot. Don’t drink them with diet mixers, as these can oddly make you gain weight, and don’t drink them with high sugar sodas like Coke either – that’s just more shit in your body! Things like vodka soda are best.

Also, fun fact… prosecco and sparkling wines have fewer calories (about 80) compared with their non sparkling vino sisters (about 180 – 250).

#3. Water, water everywhere

Down a glass of water before each meal. It will aid digestion, help you feel fuller, and if you can drink ice cold water bonus points – your body has to work harder to warm up, and so it burns more calories!

#4. Work out!

You might not have hours to pound a treadmill in the gym, but short bursts of HIIT (high intensity interval training) can be just as effective. You don’t even have to get a trainer or buy programmes like Kayla Itsines’ Bikini Body Guide – youtubers like Cassey Ho of Blogilates and Karena and Katrina of Tone it Up post free workout videos – have a look (Blogilates here, Tone it Up here).

I’m not a morning person so I feel your pain if an early start sounds unappealing, but there are huuuuuuuge advantages to this. Firstly, you get it over with, and then your evenings are free for fun after work! Secondly, if you do it before eating, your blood sugar is lower, meaning instead of using up carbs for energy, your body will be forced to use your fat as fuel instead. BOOM.

#5. A little bit of what you fancy…

One cheat meal a week can stop you going crazy. Life’s too short to never have pizza again, right? Just follow Kayla Itsines and Cassey Ho’s advice – make sure it’s just one meal, not one day!

You might want to consider ways you can improve even these cheat meals slightly, so that you’re still having something that’s a ‘treat’ but won’t feel as guilty! If you have to have a desert, try switching fatty ice-cream for frozen yoghurt with fresh fruit, for example.

For more fitspiration check out my Bikini Series Vision Board on Pinterest (from last year’s Tone it Up phase!) or my Health & Fitness inspiration board here.

What are your top tips for weightloss? Any youtube workouts you can recommend? Let me know!

B xoxox