Thursday, 23 August 2012

Question Time.

A few weeks ago, I asked you to send in your beauty, fashion and lifestyle questions (thanks to everyone who got in touch) and in this post, I'll be answering them!

I'm starting a work placement in November... do you have any suggestions for work-wear which is functional, smart, warm for winter and not too expensive?
A couple of basic knits are a good starting point, so hit Zara and stock up on their wonderfully cheap cardies and jumpers - opt for a couple in neutral colours (black, grey and/or beige), and then one or two in a bright shade, like fiery red or emerald green, to spice up otherwise dreary work outfits.
Next stop, believe it or not, is F&F at Tesco! I, too, was surprised to find the clothes were rather lovely when I walked into their clothing department on a whim a few years ago. There's lots of pencil dresses, skirts (both of which will look great with tights and boots come winter!) and trousers to choose from - have a look for yourself here.
ASOS also have a good selection of inexpensive dresses and separates in their sale - there's a lot in there, so give yourself an afternoon to trawl through the hundreds of options available!
And finally, make H&M your final stop for a great coat - unfortunately, their winter coats aren't available just yet, but I have it on good authority they should be in the shops come late September/early October.

What are your top beauty tips?
First and foremost, to make healthy lifestyle choices... starting with the most annoying beauty cliché ever, but I'm still going to say it - drink lots of water (aim for 2 -3 litres per day), you'll quickly see an astounding difference in hair, skin and nails. Eat right, exercise, don't smoke and cut back on your alcohol intake - Blake Lively is a tee-totaller... just look at her!
Beauty products are only so effective... following just a few of these ideals will make so much more of an impact than any 'magic' potion you slather onto yourself.

Credit: Rex Features

Number 2 - never, ever leave your make-up on when you go to sleep, no matter how tired you are! A thorough cleanse with a good face wash, followed by toner and serum/moisturiser (I adore the Manuka Doctor range, click here to find out more about it) is always the best way to ensure squeaky-clean skin, but if you want to get into bed quickly, at least use a make-up wipe!

And finally: get your brows shaped professionally, you'd be shocked to see just how much difference this can make! I find threading to be the best technique to give shapely, yet natural-looking brows. The best way to find a good threading specialist is to ask around and base your decision on what people have to say about the salon (and, of course, how their eyebrows actually look!).

What shampoo and conditioner do you use?
I don't religiously use a particular brand when it comes to shampoo and conditioner, and, having previously used some of the more high-end ones, I don't believe they are products worth spending a lot of money on.
I usually plump for a cheap shampoo and conditioner that smells really good - anything by Herbal Essences, Aussie or Pantene suits me just fine!

I have dry, peeling nails each time I remove my nail polish... is there anything I can do to heal them and stop this happening in the future?
Acetone is the main ingredient in the majority of nail-polish removers but it strips natural moisture from your nails, so switch to an acetone-free version (I use this one).
Take a little nail polish vacation - go paint free for two weeks, and start to use a good hand and nail cream 2-3 times a day (I love the Almond Hand & Nail Butter from the Body Shop). It's also worth applying a nail-oil directly onto the nails a couple of times a week (this one is great).
When you start wearing polish again, buff your nails to remove ridges and smooth the nail bed, before applying a base coat to protect nails from staining. Apply two coats of colour and seal with a top-coat for enviably shiny nails (I use Boots Essentials Top & Base Coat).
For a long-term solution, look at your diet and try to eat foods with more mono-unsaturated fats (oily fish, almonds and avocados are great examples) to nourish your nails from the inside, out. 

I've seen some of your pictures on Twitter; you're so slim, how do you stay in shape?
If you'd seen me eighteen months back, you would most definitely not be asking me this! They say the average student gains 15 pounds in their first year of University - well, I gained 30! I've since lost the weight, but it took me a while to learn what worked for me... once I did though, the weight literally began to drop off overnight. But I'll save all the juicy details for an in-depth post, which will be coming soon.

If you'd like one of your questions to feature on the next QT post, drop me a line at, tweet me here, or leave a comment on this post.

1 comment

  1. I recently commented asking what you wear to work (hospital) as soon I will have to be thinking about this too! Also, how do you style your hair, what shoes do you wear etc? I want to look smart obviously but also be comfortable for long shifts :)
    Love your blog!
    Sorry if you've read this twice I'm not sure it worked the first time :)


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