Should you always be striving for more?

Should you always be striving for more? Believe me, this is not a trick question.

After listening to one of my favourite podcasts on the train home from work, I really felt as though there’s something to this that kinda makes total sense – hear me out.

Today, there are so many of us that focus on what we don’t have instead of being happy and content with what we do have. And yes you heard it loud and clear – it’s completely okay to be happy with what you do have.

It seems as though we are faced with constant reminders to always strive for more, sending out a message that we are not good enough or that we need more things in our lives, or that our lives should be a certin way to feel like we are successful and therefore happy. I guess a lot of our perception of striving for more has to do with the perfectly curated pictures we see on our social media, and I am completely guilty of spending a Sunday afternoon scrolling through pictures of what is seemingly someone living their dream life, all whilst making myself feel kinda disheartened and uncotent

What I am trying to say is that it’s okay for you to not want to strive for more, to be yourself and be content in knowing your own worth. Sure, it’s healthy to have positive goals in life, but try not so much to get caught up in other people’s lives and instead stay in your own lane. Be authentic…it’s really not about what you have.

And okay, there are definitely times or certain aspects in life where it’s totally okay to strive for more, but on a whole there is a greater deal of happiness to be found in taking time to be content with what you do have ♡


Total ♡ for The Body Shop

I have legit always been a fan of The Body Shop – ever since my first purchases of the cucumber cleanser and the banana shampoo! (I swear that every teen growing up in the 00s had these two products!)

But seriously, over the past year or so The Body Shop has got it so right. I feel like it’s the perfect high street go to for all skincare and beauty products – from shampoo, to body scrub to liquid lipsticks.

Lately I have been purchasing quite a few bits, and have also received plenty from work friends as birthday presents etc. – guess the bottle of body mist on my desk and my constant spraying of it was kind of a hint that I ♡ the stuff!

My definite favourites have to be the Fuji Green Tea fresh body sorbet – this stuff is such a dream, it’s pretty moisturising but is non-greasy and literally sinks straight in. I am also a big fan of their tea tree skin range – the …wash is amazing and I genuinely find that it seems to last for ages. Polynesian Island Tiare fragrance mist has to be one of my most loved scents from The Body Shop, it kinda reminds me of being on holiday and I have a soft spot for fragrances that smell of being in the sun! Their Rainforest shampoo and conditioner range has left my hair smelling amazing – I’ve even had others comment on it, and I totally love that it has no sulphates in sight. And finally, who cannot love The Body Shop lip balms, they are a staple lip product that I can’t help but pick up everytime I’m in there!

Share your favourites/recommendations below! xx

Lip Product Must Haves

I am soooo sooo happy with my two latest lip product purchases at the moment that it was a no brainer that I share them on the Balm & Blyss blog!

Both were kind of impulse purchases – I wasn’t really on the lookout for new lip products…I already have too many to count!

The lip liner is Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pilowtalk. It’s such a smooth consistency and genuinely the only lip liner that I have ever used where I can over-line my lips and it look completely natural. The colour is perfect and works well as a base under most lipstick colours.

The NYX product is one of their soft matte lip creams in the colour Toulouse. I actually bought this as part of a set where there were 3 lip creams in total, although in all honesty I only bought the set for this one colour which wasn’t sold on it’s own! This is the first time I have ever use one of NYX’s lip creams and I am so in love with the consistency, pigment and staying power. Like the lip liner, you can get away with over-lining/colouring your lips with this product without it being super obvious.

I also have a lip product that I am dying to test out that I bought when I was in Krakow from Sephora which I will review in an upcoming blog post!

Share any of your lip product/faves/must haves below!



The Best Relationship Advice

Taking ownership and listening to others are arguably two of the most challenging things that most people have to deal with in relationships – namely myself.

In everyday life I like to think that I am quite a good listener, however not exactly the same can be said when listening to friends (or my mum and sister) when faced with advice. So as you will have guessed, the advice pill becomes almost impossible to swallow when it’s to do with relationships as I am a person (like many others – I hope!) who is often in denial.

Three of the biggest lessons I have learnt from relationships are this:

Don’t look back with rose tinted spectacles

Own up when you’re in the wrong

You can’t control other people’s feelings

The last point for me is the most important, and something that a friend told me recently. Basically what is the point in stressing about things when you can’t control someone else’s actions – and why should you want to? Once you learn to accept that you cannot control other people’s feelings or actions you can learn to relax and be more trusting. And it totally makes sense. I mean let’s think about it – why would we want to try and control someone else? Then they’re only doing things because they feel like they have to and not because they want to.

Don’t make life more complicated than it already is – respect yourself enough to take ownership of your life and actions ♡


Acne Studios Pink Bomber Dupe

After becoming a little addicted to following Negin Mirsalehi on YouTube (and being a long-time IG follower of hers) I fell in love with her pink, silk Acne Studios bomber jacket that she showed in one of her vlogs.

Cue serious jacket envy.

So after some online digging, I’m pretty sure that the Acne Studios jacket is completely sold out, so I decided to look around the high street for the perfect dupe.

After a disappointing eBay order (the jacket was originally from Missguided) it was kinda accidental that I then found the almost perfect dupe in Mango.

[For those of you who want to see the Acne Studios bomber jacket for comparison click through here]

So the main difference being that the shade of pink differs slightly – the Mango bomber is a brighter pink whereas the Acne Studios jacket is more of a dusky pink, but I was definitely happy to settle on the colour!

The jacket was £34.99 and I bought it in a size M which is slightly loose fitting on me which I prefer anyway, and what I really like about it is that it is slightly quilted so can be worn in colder weather and summer.

I’m heading to Berlin in March and can’t wait to (hopefully) wear it then – more pictures to come!



The 5 Minute Journal

Actually I can’t quite believe I haven’t already written a blog post on the 5 minute journal, I’ve had mine for a good couple of years now, so is well overdue a moment in the spotlight!

I have always been a bit of a flaky diary keeper/writer – but as most young girls do, I went through a stage of keeping a journal that was obviously a prized possession that god forbid was to fall in to the wrong hands (aka your parents) life would definitely have been over as we know it!

Btw did anyone ever have one of the electronic secret diaries?!

Anyway fast forward 15 or so years and the trend of keeping a diary/journal was something that kinda just phased out.

So what has changed?

I found the 5 minute journal through following one of my favourite you-tubers/influencers Mimi Ikonn. As a joint business venture, the 5 minute journal was created by Mimi, Alex and UJ and was designed to help improve mental clarity and improve positive state of mind by, you guessed it, spending 5 minutes a day writing down your thoughts in the journal.

Like many other journals/diaries in the market, the 5 minute journal has pages ready to populate – every morning and every night there are sections where you can share what you are thankful for and things you want to accomplish for the day. There are quotes scattered throughout the whole journal too which are really uplifting and really fitting with the whole concept which I think is a really nice touch.

So, have I been consistent with it?

No. But I feel like the beauty of the 5 minute journal is that it’s the kinda thing that you can pick right back up even after weeks of not keeping it up – it’s definitely non-assuming, and a great way to genuinely learn to appreciate the smaller daily things and practice a little more gratitude ♡

Let me know your favourite diary/journals!






Quick and easy vegan pizza recipe

Being plant-based or vegan has never been so easy!

Pizza has become such a staple in most people’s diets and it’s actually super easy and tasty to ditch the cheese and make a vegan-friendly version (almost) from scratch!

Okay so the reality is most of us don’t always have the time to perfect a homemade pizza base so Tesco have made life easy for us and have a ready-made mix that is 100% vegan and a total bargain – all you need to do is add water and follow the instructions on the packet!

Once you have allowed the dough to prove, go ahead and go crazy by adding the tomato puree and vegetable to your base along with any other toppings and then bake for roughly 20 mins. Take out and top with spinach and add a lil balsamic glaze and dig in, I also like to have mine with a side of homemade hummus (find the perfect recipe here).

The perfect fake-away food!


2017: Live for Today

Happy [belated!] New Year!

It seems pretty fitting to start off 2017 with positive intentions for the year, and that’s why I just felt as though I had to share my thoughts on Stylist magazine’s recent article (Jan 11th issue) with guest writer Annie Slater.

I immediately recognised Annie after seeing her on First Dates a month or so back and she struck me back then as an incredibly inspiring woman who simply had the most amazing outlook on life.

Reading Annie’s article in Stylist on my daily commute home actually brought me to tears and I felt urged to pass it on making my mum and sister read the article!

I think what really hit home was how Annie absolutely hits the nail on the head with her outlook on life and I 100% intend to take a leaf out of her book and simply live life in the present. Living life in the present and not dwelling on things in the past that did or didn’t happen isn’t a brand new revelation, but the simple, honest approach … takes in life, genuinely appreciating every achievement and seeing each day as an opportunity to be had however small.

The other message which really resonated was to not envy the lives of others as we see them through social media which is so true as it is so so easy to become so wrapped up and view our own lives as below par or unsuccessful when we should really celebrate where we are and what we have accomplished, without constantly comparing to those whose own race is completely unique to them and perhaps skewed by social media.

Let me know if you also read this article I would love to hear your thoughts!


Scandi Style


Scandi/Nordic Style



Happy Monday guys! If you hadn’t noticed already, I am loving Scandinavian/Nordic style right now! And seriously, all the items above are genuinely on my wish list (if only..!)

What I love about Scandi/Nordic style is that it is always a really tasteful balance – not hyper minimalistic, just the right amount of accessorising/colour/pattern whether it’s clothing or interiors.

2017 goals are to embrace this style with an almost ‘less is more’ kinda mantra, and look to buy key pieces that will last and that can be mixed and matched when it comes to clothing (the interiors might have to wait a little while until I have my own place to decorate!)

Follow my Scandi style Pinterest board here and my favourite Nordic interiors Instagram account here – let me know wh0/what your favourite influencers are!

Ciao xx

City Break #2 – Montpellier

montepellier-airbnb-2 montepellier-airbnb-4 montepellier-airbnb-5 montepellier-airbnb-7 montepellier-airbnb-10 montepellier-airbnb-13 montepellier-airbnb-15 montepellier-airbnb-16montepellier-airbnb-17montepellier-airbnb-18 montpellier-2 montpellier-4 montpellier-5montpellier-6

Okay so I feel a little bit of a cheat with this one as it was last Summer that I actually visited Montpellier with a uni friend for a few days…however the pictures I have are way too beautiful to not share and technically it was a city break so here goes!

France is one of my favourite places, I love the language, the culture, the architecture – just everything about it. Montpellier is a city in the South of France that’s about 10km away from the coast, so has Mediterranean temperatures pretty much all year round which made it the perfect choice for a quick city break in the Summer.

We stayed in an Airbnb in the Centre Historique, which as you would imagine is full of old, traditional French buildings, scattered with small bars, patisseries and cafes. The nightlife and food was pretty good, and surprisingly there are quite a few retail shops throughout the centre. Reaching the beach was a little more complicated than we had imagined, however once you get to grips with the trams and busses it’s pretty smooth sailing and worth a visit, more so if you are there for a week rather than a few days.

Flights are so reasonabley priced, and Montpellier is perfectly located to then travel on to Monaco (I have yet to still go there but would love to!) and is somewhere I would definitely visit again.

So as mentioned in my previous City Break post (check it out here if you haven’t already!) I am planning to travel to 30 countries before I’m 30 – suggestions are welcome so please let me know your must see places!


1 2 3 4 5 13