My first Birchbox

Monday, May 28, 2018


I mentioned in one of my recent posts that I'd decided to subscribe to Birchbox to celebrate the fact that I'm done paying the SLC (for now!). I figured I'd put that bit of money into something new and different, such as a beauty subscription box.

I've tried beauty subscription boxes before but that was years ago, and I found the whole thing a bit underwhelming. I figured I'd try again, this time with Birchbox, to see if I like them the second time round. May's box arrived last Friday and contained five dreamy products in the cutest palm-print box.

Things I want to note right off the bat:

1. The beauty box itself was packaged in cardboard without any excessive filler like Styrofoam or bubble wrap.
2. The box and leaflets inside are made of nice quality card and can easily be recycled.
3. The box isn't HUGE either so it doesn't take up a ton of space if you decide to keep it and repurpose it.

Immediately I'm already loving this.

I received a Luscious Lip Stain from Doucce in the shade 'Steaming Red', a Skinny Liquid Eyeliner from Eyeko, an Activated Charcoal Natural Deodorant Balm from Native Unearthed, the New Age Precision 8-in-1 Power Serum from Marcelle, and some Geranium and Peppermint Botanical Body Wash from Greenfrog Botanic.

Shelf reshuffle

Sunday, May 27, 2018

This post contains affiliate links.

My books and trinkets have all been in the same position on this IKEA unit since I put it up in 2016 and it was starting to look stale. I decided to move my A Song of Ice and Fire series to the second from bottom shelf and bring my magazines and non-fiction collection (plus a couple of little Conan Doyle books) to the top two because they're the things I read the most. It means some of my favourite non-fiction books of all time - Simple Matters by Erin Boyle, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo, and The Kinfolk Home - get to take centre stage (and become more accessible).

By the way, that slightly terrifying bronze cat is from the Lake District; my mum brought it back as a souvenir. I love it but it has the most soulless eyes I've ever seen.

Lovely quotes / 15

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Here's some lovely quotes to start your weekend off right. Enjoy!

“You are more than a list of mistakes and if anyone tells you otherwise, let it be the last they make.”
— Iain Thomas, I Wrote This For You

“Let yourself become that space that welcomes any experience without judgement.”
— Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Open Heart, Open Mind: Awakening the Power of Essence Love

“A land of fragrance, quietness, and trees, and flowers.”
— John Keats, The Complete Poems & Selected Letters

“We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day.”
— Brad Meltzer

“Don’t explain. People only hear what they want to hear.”
— Paulo Coelho

“It was a wonderful clear moonlight night in May; the air was filled with soft perfume.”
— Alexander Wrangel, Reminiscences of Fyodor Dostoevsky

“I have learned that feeling empty sometimes is okay. I’ve got to refill myself with something at some point. Art, love, solitude, random acts of kindness. I really don’t know, but that’s what makes being whole again so exciting.”
— Juansen Dizon, Emptiness

“You are my sweet sensation, my warm tea with honey, my needy creature, my moody beast, my love.”

Pinterest mood board / 7

Friday, May 25, 2018

Spring flowers & beauty boxes

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

We went to a garden centre on Sunday, as is mandatory during a British summer. We picked up some more flowers for the garden (not the ones above, sadly) and I bought a bag of wildflower seeds so I can fill the troughs up again this year and get those bees coming back. Never felt so accomplished as I did when my wildflowers started to sprout last summer (plants seem to die just from me looking at them, so this was a big feat for me.)

It's been an average week - worked, napped, chilled in the sun, had a couple of barbecues etc. I've discovered a YouTube channel where two Aussie girls destroy make-up and I love it. You get over the 'holy crap that product is £40 don't do that' feeling really quickly, and then it becomes oddly enjoyable.

I mentioned in my last 'life' post that I had bought some Glossier products - I absolutely love the Cloud Paint, it is everything I've ever wanted in a blush product (the tiniest speck on each cheek will coat them perfectly). The Birthday Balm Dotcom is like soft glittery jelly and makes me feel like a bubblegum-blowing 90s girl when I wear it on my lips.

I have also recently decided to trial Birchbox. I used to subscribe to Glossybox when I was a teen but I was always a bit underwhelmed by the products. Seeing as I have stopped paying the Student Loans Company (for now), I figured I would try out a beauty subscription box with that spare money and see what goodies they send me. Nice thing is you can cancel at any time.

Hope you guys have a great Bank Holiday. I will be working, so get out and enjoy the sun for me.

The Royal Wedding

Saturday, May 19, 2018


As you may well know, the royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle took place this afternoon. Watching it live on TV was wonderful, but I must admit I was jealous of those who go to see them in Windsor. I would've loved to have been in those Union Jack-waving crowds under that glorious British sunshine, surrounded by truly happy people. They couldn't have asked for better weather and a better setting.

I have no intention of getting married ever, but I love wedding dresses. I loved Meghan's for its simplicity and elegance; that boat neck was perfection, so flattering. At some point in my life I need to try on a wedding dress just so I can pretend I'm a Disney princess for like half an hour and I'll be sorted.

I wanted to post some of the photos from the wedding because I think it was the most beautiful ceremony I've ever seen, and Meghan looked like an actual angel.

Photo: The Independant

Photo: / Christopher Jackson

Photo: Yui Mok

Watch: Bohemian Rhapsody teaser trailer

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The teaser trailer for the new Queen/Freddie Mercury biopic has been released and I am beyond excited. My goosebumps got goosebumps. Watch it for yourself...

That casting! Ahh!

6 of my favourite Instagrammers / 3

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Hope you enjoy this little dose of Instagram inspiration on this lovely, refreshing Sunday morning. I am @marchninetyfour if you fancy following me.

10 things that have happened lately

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

1.I bought cute new bedding from Wilko - pink and grey, a classic combo.

2.I recieved my first Glossier order through the post - I tried very hard not to succumb to the hype but I finally caved and bought some Dusk Cloud Paint and the Birthday Balm Dotcom.

3.I bought a dehumidifier off Amazon for my bedroom so hopefully I'll be able to breathe soon.

4.I started taking apple cider vinegar tablets to help with my underactive thyroid - they regulate hormone levels and help you lose weight if you're struggling to with hypothyroidism. The smell reminds me of proper seaside chippy vinegar and I kind of love it, although I could never drink the stuff.

5.I've decided to look after my skin more - once pay day arrives, I'll be buying myself a dry brush, body oil, jade facial roller, foam roller (for my back and shoulder pain), and a big ol' bag of epsom salts.

6.I'm also trying to incorporate more gluten free food into my diet to see if I can figure out what's up with my gut. I'm fairly certain I'm not a celiac, but I feel like it's wheat that is causing me the most grief.

7.I've become a bit obsessed with commentary channels on YouTube - a few faves are BionicPIG, ImAllexx, Cody Ko, WillNEElvis the Alien, and Leon Lush. Recommended if you like listening to funny people talking about current events/pop culture/the internet.

8.I discovered my MacBook needs a battery service... 💸

9.I watched Avengers: Infinity War nearly two weeks ago and I still haven't recovered emotionally. Anyone else struggling to come to terms with that ending?

10.It got hot in England! On Sunday we ate honey and sweet chilli sauce-covered chicken, the scrummiest sausages ever, fried potatoes, and salad sat outside in the glorious sunshine. Those humid late spring/early summer days are some of my favourites (although it does get too much after a bit).

Hope you guys have a great week.

Summer essentials

Monday, May 07, 2018

Summer's fast approaching so now is the perfect time to make sure you're organised, comfortable, and protected for your next outing in this glorious, blazing sunshine. I've put together what I think are the ultimate (rather British) summer essentials, enjoy!

1. Sunscreen

I'm a pasty white gal and I burn very easily, so I need the highest SPF and UVA protection I can find. I also want to avoid premature wrinkles and skin cancer, obvs. I use Altruist Dermatologist Sunscreen (£7.50 for 2 x 100ml) because it has 5 star UVA protection, it's non-greasy, and it's hypoallergenic. It works well under make-up, doesn't leave a white cast on your skin, and doesn't have an overpowering scent.

2. Sandals

If you're looking for comfort, style, and practicality in a sandal, I'd recommend a pair of Salt-Water Sandals (£59.50) - I love the Original red ones. Salt-Water sandals have rust-proof buckles so can be worn in water (a bonus if you're at the beach) and they are durable so they will last you years.

3. Hat

I'm not a hat person at all, but if I was to wear one (which I probably should more often), I'd pick this Hello Sunshine straw floppy hat from STORY (£18.00). It's simple, cute, and does the job.

4. A summer dress

I love this lemon-embroidered dress from Cath Kidston (£70.00) made from light, cotton chambray. Looks like a classic denim dress but isn't as weighty or thick, so it's perfect for summer.

5. Water bottle

I love Bobble bottles (£8.99) because they have a filter in them which means you can fill up at any tap and not worry about the water tasting of chemicals.

6. Cardigan

For cool evenings and for extra shoulder/arm protection in the sun, you may want to wear something like this blue H&M fine-knit cardigan (£12.99). It's casual, perfectly slouchy, and has those easy breezy dolman sleeves so you won't sweat to death or feel too wrapped up.

7. Sunglasses

Another obvious one. I love these Dirty Dog tortoise-shell sunnies (£49.99). They have Polarised lenses so you won't get that horrible glare when you're driving in the sun or looking at anything bright and reflective like snow or water. There are also 4 UVA filters in the lenses so your eyes will be sufficiently protected.

8. Swimsuit

Never liked bikinis, so I opted for this yellow knot-detail swimsuit from H&M (£24.99) instead. It has a plunging neckline, an exposed back, and adjustable straps, and looks like it would be very flattering around the tummy.

New jewellery storage

Sunday, May 06, 2018

Long time no see!

I came to the realisation last week that I should probably start storing my beloved jewellery in a box rather than having it out on my vanity. My rings and necklaces get tarnished really quickly and some of them are beyond saving, so I figured a jewellery box would be practical as I especially don't want my Pandora rings to get ruined (they're my faves).

I scoured eBay, Amazon and Etsy for the perfect jewellery box - I wanted something more like a case, not a box. I absolutely adore Stackers but they're way out of my price range. I needed something slim because I'm limited on space in my bedroom and I wanted this jewellery box to slot into one of my drawers. 

I came across this flat, grey jewellery box on eBay. It's the the ideal size and colour, has room to store most of my necklace so they don't get tangled, and has the perfect amount of slots for my rings. It's also lined with pink 'velvet' so it feels luxe but without an excessive price tag.
marchninetyfour | A UK lifestyle blog