25 February 2020

Entering A New Decade... | Lippy In The City

I hate starting on a negative, but wow, my twenties were HARD… Like really hard, but boy did I learn a lot along the way. A lot can happen during 3,650 rotations of the sun!

I reckon I’ve had more ups and down in the last ten years, than I have in my whole life! Your twenties are such a pivotal decade though, and one where you really learn who you are, what you want out of life, and what you will and won’t stand for. It’s only now, as I’m on the cusp of turning thirty that I fell that I’ve really grasped the direction that I want my life to go in.

I can definitely say I’ve felt pressure in recent years from society to have hit the ‘usual’ milestones in life, such as marriage and kids (I have neither), but that’s ok. I try and tell myself that life would be boring if we all arrived at the same destination at the same time. Plus, there are a lot of things in life that simply can’t be forced, and I’d rather wait fifty years for something to feel right, then rush into something because our modern world tells me that I should before I hit thirty.

A few years ago I wrote a post called 26 Things I've Learnt Over 26 Years... Today I thought it would be fun to go back over them and add in what I've learnt along the way... 

1. Age is only a number. I have to constantly remind myself of this one.
And I still do. Thirty is the new twenty anyway...

2. You don't have to be married with two babies just because everyone around you is. Trust me, there's no rush.
I came pretty close to getting married two years ago, but five weeks out it was cancelled. Marriage is a lifelong commitment so go with your gut on this one, it has to be right and to the right person (obviously). I was completely heartbroken, and I have tried on many an occasion to write about it to gain some sort of closure but the words don’t come easy. One day I hope to get married and have a family of my own, but I’m not prepared to compromise on this one, and you shouldn’t either. 

3. Life happens really quick. Everything can change in a heartbeat so be present in the moment as much as possible.

4. You will never get along with everyone you meet, and that's ok. Learn to be polite and except people for who they are.

5. People will let you down and it's usually from the people you least expected. Shrug it off, and stay positive.
Yep to this too. Move on, trust me, they’re not worth it. 

6. Being a responsible adult is hard. Everyone has bad days, and days when they don't want to clean the bathroom and hang their laundry up. That's normal. 

7. Never feel guilty for having a day devoted to your sofa and Netflix. We all need to recharge our batteries from time to time...

8. Just don't make it a habit. Netflix will always be there, but that awesome opportunity might not. Get up, dress up and show up.

9. Set goals and work towards them. Whether that be a career goal or a handbag goal. Work or save your butt off to get to it. It's vitally important in life to have goals to work towards, it gives us something to focus on.
I’ve got a bit lax with this lately and I truly believe that setting goals gives us something to drive towards. I’ll definitely be setting some new goals for 2020 to get me back on track. 

10. When in doubt, put on a pair of dark jeans, a smart blouse, and killer heels - Winner!

11. Learning what looks good on you and what flatters your figure is life changing.
If it makes you feel a million dollars, and accentuates all the right curves who cares what brand or make it is, how much it cost or who likes it. You're dressing for you, no one else. 

12. Quality over quantity.
EVERY TIME! Learn to invest in pieces that will last you a lifetime. It will save you money in the long-run and will save the world a whole lot of consumerism in the process. 

13. If you’re going to spend big, do it on accessories. Wearing a good watch, pair of shoes, sunglasses and handbag will see you through most situations.

14. Make time for your friends. It takes nothing to send a quick text or email to see how your friends are doing. Plus, it reminds them that your still alive and thinking about them.

15. Make time for your relationships too. Relationships take real work and effort.

16. Never underestimate the importance of loving yourself too.
Self-love is a healer, and it should be a priority for all of us. It can be a five-minute face-mask, journaling or full blown spa day, whatever you need to do to love yourself and give you some 'me time', do it. 

17. Always take your make up off before you go to sleep. If it means keeping wipes on your bedside table, do it!
It’s never too late to start a skincare regime. It doesn’t have to be eighty five products, just a good cleanser, toner, SPF and moisturiser will do the trick and trust me, your skin will thank you. 

18. The realisation that the hangovers get that little bit worse every year...

19. Coffee will get you through almost anything.

20. The older you get, the more a night in with a Chinese and a bottle of wine wins hands-down over a night out 'clubbing'.

21. You only get one family, cherish them. I still believe this whole heatedly.
I lost my Grandad a few years ago and what I wouldn’t give to see him again. Cherish the moments, because they go far too quickly.

22. Learn to utilise that 'magic' hour between 6 and 7 in the morning to organise your day and get bits done whilst everyone else is still sleeping. You'll feel more organised and on top of your schedule before anyone else has even had breakfast.

23. Everyone younger than you will always be classed as 'twelve'... #standard

24. Realise just how much you're worth and never settle for anything less. As above...

25. It's the little things in life that truly matter.

26. Go that extra mile, it's never crowded... Honestly, it never is!

Plus a few more I’ve learnt recently…

27. Less is more… With most things. Keep your circle small, curate your wardrobe, and only keep what you love. 

28. But, love in abundance! We can never have too much love in this world.

29. Nature is truly the greatest healer. Getting out in the fresh air can do wonders for your physical and mental health. I’m not the fittest person by any means, but I walk outside can make me feel so much better in no time.

30. Do it for you! No matter what it is, if it makes you happy, do it. This is the single most important piece of advice I can ever give. If it made you happy, don’t regret it, because at some point it was exactly what you needed.

So, here's to the next decade... I can't wait xoxo

Images courtesy of unsplash.com


05 April 2019

5 Ways to be a More Put-Together Person | Lippy In The City

I'm a naturally organised person and I usually have lists coming out of my ears! Granted I can cope with being messy, but I can't cope with being dis-organised, its just not me. 

Today I though I'd share 5 tips that help keep me put-together on a daily basis, and on top of my life as a whole...

The first thing I do on a Monday morning when I get into work is plan out my week. I have a daily diary for meetings and appointments, then a notebook where I write everything out that I have to do that week. I like to take a double page spread in my notebook and divide it into four sections; to-do's, social, web amends, and images needed. This can change weekly but it's a typical example (I work in Marketing so bear in mind these will need to be relevant to your individual needs). Seeing everything that I have to do for the week in one go really helps me visualise what needs to get done and releases the pressure of having to get everything done on a specific day.

I can't recommend this step enough. Having 5,868 unread emails in your inbox can definitely cause unnecessary stress, and let's face it, if we can minimise any needless stresses throughout the day I'm all for it. Whilst I'm at work I continually have my email account up and visible, I try to answer as many emails as possible as soon as they come in. I then like to make a note in my diary of any follow ups, or actions I need to take. Likewise with my personal email, I check this around three times a day and I make notes in my phone of any meetings or actions. I also like to delete junk emails as soon as I receive them too. I don't need them clogging up my phone memory, or head space for that matter.

I try and have a 'Life Admin' evening / morning once a week. For me this includes paying any bills that have come in, organising my weekly finances, popping a face mask on, cleaning out my make up bag, cleaning my makeup brushes, painting my nails etc. It's all the little life admin bits that help me feel like I have my 'shizz' together and life on track. This will obviously vary from person to person as everyone's needs differ, find out what makes you feel like you have all your ducks in a row and make time for it one evening or morning a week. You'll thank me later :)

Planning my weekly work outfits really makes me feel more put-together, and it definitely cuts down on the amount of thinking I have to do when I'm still half asleep on a morning. For me, the less decisions I have to make before 7am the better. I plan my outfits on a Sunday night as I do the majority of my laundry over the weekend when I'm off work, that way I have my clothes fresh, clean and ready to go for the week ahead. I like to dress relatively smart for work and typically wear a mixture of Capri trousers with blouses alternated with a few work appropriate dresses. Do you like to plan your weekly outfits too?

I mentioned that I love lists, and I really do, I love them a lot! I keep lists on my phone, diary, notepad that I carry around in my handbag, literally everywhere! Lists are what honestly keep me (somewhat) sane and on track, personally I couldn't function without them. I'm a great believe that once something is out of your head and on paper, it stops going around in your mind and you can focus on the more important things that require immediate attention. Some of my favourite lists include, daily to-do's, weekly to-do's, my cleaning schedule and my uni schedule. I also like to list important dates that I have coming up and things I'd like to achieve within the next month and year. These kind of lists show me what goals I'm working towards and help me stay focused.

I hope you find these tips helpful, I'd love to know what helps you stay organised and feeling like a bawse... xoxo

Images courtesy of unsplash.com

29 March 2019

My Weight Watchers Journey | Month One | Lippy In The City

Hi Everyone!! *waves enthusiastically* (long-time-no-blog). Today, I wanted to share my Weight Watchers journey with you, talking about how I started, where I’m at and what I hope to achieve.

I started Weight Watchers about a month ago in an attempt to shed a few pounds before my holiday to Menorca in May. Over the last few years I’ve gradually piled on the pounds and decided, enough is enough, I want to get back to the old me, and my old size. I was by no means massively over weight, but I was over weight for my height and my personal preference, and let’s be honest, everyone has different weight preferences to feel comfortable in their own skin.

My goal is to lose a stone and a half, or 20ish lbs. I won’t be back to my lightest after loosing that, but I will be back to a weight I’m comfortable with which is the main thing.

I knew when starting Weight Watchers that I needed to be realistic in my expectations, something I think is vitally important for anyone starting out on a new weight loss plan. I knew I wanted the lose the 20 lbs, but I knew it wouldn’t magically melted off me by the time my holidays came around, I simply hadn’t left myself a realistic time frame and it would ultimately have been unhealthy of me to try and do.

Instead, I set my sights on making a decent dent in my weight loss before I went away, and my weight loss journey would simply have to continue when I got back until I’d hit my target weight. At four weeks in, I’m 5 lbs down, which I’m so pleased about. I still have a few weeks to go before I go away in which I’m hoping to shift a few more lbs, I’ll keep you updated!

I pay around £10 a month to access the Weight Watchers app, you can pay slightly more to use the app and go to the workshops too, but personally I prefer online only. To get started, you fill in a few details about yourself including your current weight and height, and how much you’d like to lose. You’re then allocated a set number of smart points that you should ideally should stick to each day (I’ve been allocated 23 points per day).

Every food item is calculated into a smart point based on its nutritional value (don’t worry, Weight Watchers does this for you, all you just have to type in what you eat and it gives you the relevant point value). If I keep within 13 – 28 points a day I get a blue dot, and I love to see how many blue dots I can get in a row.

As well as your daily points, you're also allocated additional weekly points. Like the daily points, these are calculated depending on your individual preferences. I have 25 weekly points to play with. Weekly points are used for times when you may have a meal out, or a few cocktails and need to go over your daily points allowance. I try and use around half my weekly points each week. It’s not bad to use them all by any means, I just feel I lose more when I don’t use all of them.

I’m really enjoying my Weight Watchers journey and I haven’t felt deprived at all. I can have a little something of anything, as long as I log it and take account for its points value. I’m a sucker for a McDonald’s (it’s my absolute favourite!) A small portion of McDonald’s Fries are 10 points, 6 Chicken Nuggets come in at 7 points, and a Diet Coke has 0 points. This means that I can have a McDonald's every once in a while, as long as I have breakfast and dinner made up of 0 point foods, so it’s a win win!

I set my weight in day for a Friday, and I weight first thing in the morning then log it in the app. Friday’s are my preferred day but you can set whichever day you fancy when your setting up the app.

I’ve been really enjoying my Weight Watchers journey so far and I’m looking forward to what the future holds. Please let me know if you’d like to see what a typical day of eating on 23 Smart Points looks like and I’d be more than happy to blog it.

Fancy starting WW yourself and getting a month free for both you and me? Click here to find out more... xoxo

Images courtesy of unsplash.com

28 December 2018

Bring on The New Year | Lippy In The City

It's safe to say that 2018 has been one of the toughest year's of my life. The year started with me losing my Grandad, followed by my wedding not going ahead in October. I've had everything imaginable thrown at me over the last 12 months and subsequently, I'm looking forward to the fresh start that 2019 will bring!

Over the last few months I've been doing some soul-searching in a bid to remain positive and take back some self-control. This has led me to implement a few New Year's resolutions early so that I can get the best possible start in 2019. 

This New Year I'm putting myself first. I'm such a 'yes' person and it's about time I started saying 'yes' to what I actually want. If it doesn't bring me positivity or happiness, I'm simply not doing it anymore. This may seem like a selfish thing to say, but I honestly believe if you don't put yourself and your own needs first, you won't get very far.

I'm half way through my Law Degree and for the last few months I've been slacking with my studying. I have to admit, this years topic of contract law isn't my favourite and it hasn't given me much motivation to sit down and get on with it. But, it has to be done and I'm looking at the bigger picture. Graduating will be one of the proudest days of my life and I literally can't wait, I've just got to work my butt off a bit longer to get there!

In November I treated my Mum and I to a Yoga retreat in Brecon and I have to say it was one of the most relaxing weekends I've ever had. It made me realise how much I enjoy Yoga and how good I feel when I practice it regularly. This year I'd like to practice Yoga three times a week if I can. I have a really sedentary job so the stretching will do me the world of good, as well as help me to clear and re-focus my mind.

Over the past few months I've made a conscious effort to buy less. What I have been buying, has had to be something I needed as opposed to just something I just wanted. Minimalism fascinates me and I'd love to live a more minimal life and live with less 'stuff', 2019 is going to be the year I really look into it and start my minimal journey. As always, I'll bring you along for the ride ;)

As well as consciously buying less in 2019, I'd like to save more if I can too. I'll be 29 in March and at this age I'd have hoped to have a little more tucked away for a 'rainy day' then I currently have. Saving money isn't rocket science, but it can be hard for millennial's to do as we live in such a price-inflated world. Hopefully, by implementing my 4th goal of living with less, I'll naturally buy less, so will have more funds to save. In theory this works, but I'll keep you updated on what it's like when I try and put it all into action.

My apologies for the lack of content in 2018 (it's been a real shitty one). I hope 2019 brings you everything you wish for, and you smash all the goals you set out to achieve this New Year...

Much love,
Aislinn xoxo

Images courtesy of unsplash.com

28 October 2018

Everyday Makeup Favourites - Autumn 2018 | Lippy In The City

Autumn is without doubt my favourite season. I love nothing more than watching the trees change from green, to gold, to copper and taking in the crisp, fresh air that Fall brings.

I also love the opportunity to switch up my makeup bag and bring out the warmer tonnes that seem apt for the change in weather. Some of my favorites include MAC's Studio Fix Powder Foundation in the shade NC 20. I adore this powder for setting my foundation, and even when I'm not wearing any makeup I can't leave the house without having this in my handbag. This never looks cakey on me and I like to apply it with either the sponge that it comes with, or a large fluffy brush depending on the coverage I'm going for. I've talked about this powder many times on my blog, and it really is a holy grail item for me. Do you prefer a powdered look like me in the Autumn too?

To keep my under eyes looking bright, I've been reaching for my Le Correcteur De Chanel Longwear Concealer in no. 10 Beige. The creamy concealer / highlighter hybrid is on the pricier side, and its comparable to YSL's Touche Eclat (if you love that, you'll love this even more). This product is long-wearing yet lightweight and has a buildable finish that lasts all day. I like to dot mine on, then blend it out with a damp beauty blender, preferably after I've applied my foundation. It also has a fantastic shade range which is a massive plus!

Another favourite is CND's Vinyl Lux nail polishes. Their Wild Earth collection is new for the Fall season and is made up of six rich and creamy shades designed to suit every skin tone and Autumn fashion choice. I opted for the shades Brimstone, which is a neutral beige and Arrowhead, a creamy earthy brown.

I'm obsessed with the two shades and have been wearing Brimstone* on my fingers and Arrowhead* on my toes permanently since I received them. This new collection showcases their re-invented Vinylux™ Weekly Polish, with an innovative ergonomic brush and unique caring complex. The Italian-designed brush allows for smooth and easy application and the infusion of keratin, jojoba oil and vitamin E, keeps your natural nails hydrated and flexible. 

These polishes last comfortably for a whole week on me before they start chipping. Despite my ever growing nail polish collection, the Vinyl Lux formulas are without a doubt my favourites and I can't wait to see their next collection.

If you caught my blog post Date Night Favourites, this next Autumn essential will come as no surprise as it's from the company ESQIDO, who happen to make the most amazing false lashes in the world, and they have now launched two amazing Gel Eyeliner Pencils! These eyelines come in classic shades of black* and brown*. I love the black for when I want to amp up my makeup, and the brown for everyday; the brown also really accentuates my green eyes which I love. 

These eyeliners let you experience all the benefits of a gel eyeliner with the convenience of a sharpenable pencil. They have intense colour payoff and glide on ultra-smoothly. The pencil is packed with product too in a retracting mechanical body, combined with a silicon ring closure to provide an airtight seal, this eyeliner has been made to last. The product formula is waterproof, long-lasting, and lightweight. Trust me, these ESQIDO Liners will quickly become you everyday go-to's.

Last up is two of my makeup bag staples, MAC's Matte Lipstick in Velvet Teddy (a cult classic), and L'Oreal Paris Miss Baby Roll Mascara (the best drugstore mascara in my opinion). Velvet Teddy is the most perfect Autumn lip colour. The shade is warm toned and neutral, allowing it to brightening up your look in a single swipe. The Matte formula is long lasting too, even when applied on it's own without a lip liner. Have you tried Velvet Teddy before, or it's darker cousin, Antique Velvet?

L'Oreal Paris Miss Baby Roll Mascara is a great everyday mascara, regardless of the season. It's lengthening, volumizing and holds your lashes in a curl! What more could you ask for? The bristles curve around the brush to create the curl in your lashes, which can take a bit of getting used too. The formula dries down quickly though and doesn't flake on me which is always a bonus. 

Which makeup products do you reach for in the Fall? xoxo

*PR Sample. CND™ products are available from pro nail salons and online. To find a pro salon near you, go to lovecnd.com. A massive thank you to the team at ESQIDO for giving me the opportunity to experience these amazing Gel Eyeliners. The samples I received were complimentary and for review purposes, all opinions as always, are my own.
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