Monday, 22 December 2014

Glamorous hair and makeup for the festive season

The festive season is all about glitz and glamour, and the two main events when you tend to go all in for the sparkle are of course the work Christmas party and New Year's Eve. Girls, myself included, tend to dress up from top to toe,and an outfit is not just about the dress, but the hair and makeup are just as important. The company I work for had their Christmas party last Friday, and this is the look I went for; black long dress with shiny embellishments, smoky eye makeup, and wavy hair.

 To create a smoky eye makeup you need two different coloured eyeshadows - I've used matt black and a metallic cream coloured shadow. Use your darkest shade at the outside of your lids, and create a crescent shape Make sure you blend it with the lighter eyeshadow which site on the insides of your lid, so that you don't get a sharp line between the two shades. Once you've done your eye shadow, line your eyes with a good eyeliner, and a volumising mascara.
With such focus on the eyes I'm simply wearing a pretty neutral and light lipstick so that the eyes and the lips won't fight for attention. I'm also using a golden tone on my skin with the help of a bit of bronzer, which I've mainly applied on my cheeks.

 This floor length black dress with embellishments under the bust is a classic! With it being of a straight cut it's absolutely timeless, and is suitable for most slightly fancier festivities. I've also opted for the classic Hollywood waves to top it all off. Thoughts?

Thank you so much to Fragrance Direct who were nice enough to send me a big box of beauty products in order to help out with my Christmas and New Year's looks! 
Merry Christmas everyone! x

Thursday, 18 December 2014

An easy guide to lace nail art

Just a really short post on how to do lace inspired nail art, as I've had a lot of people asking me how to do this lately.

All you need for this style is:
2 different coloured nail polishes
(you get a better result if they're quite contrasting colours)
A small nail art brush
2 different sized dotting tools
A good top coat

1. Paint a couple of coats of your base colour and let it dry completely.
2. With the small nail art brush, paint a guide line to where you want your lace nail art to sit. Don't wait for it to dry, but move on to the next step straight away.
3. Use your medium sized dotting tool, and follow the guide line with lots of dots on both sides.
4. Once your medium sized dots have dried, use a smaller dotting tool and create little dots inside the medium dots. This is what creates the lace effect.
5. Once dry, apply a layer off top coat, and - Tadaaaa! This is your result.

Let me know how you got on with your lace inspired nail art, and if there are any other nail art tutorials you'd like to see here on Fashion Infatuation. 
Some of my previous tutorials can be seen here;

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

2 times leather bargains

brown leather jacket
I absolutely adore my new-ish leather jacket! Want to know why?

dark brown leather jacket
Well, firstly - it's of a perfect dark brown colour, the leather is nice and soft, and it has got some great detailing in the form of pockets and the soft collar. Secondly - it only cost me £75! This is a real bargain when it comes to a quality genuine leather jacket. Where did I find it? I Love 2 Love.

knitted tights
I'm matching my brown leather jacket with a dusky dark blue skirt from Primark, and a pair of thick knitted tights in beige - perfect for the colder seasons.

dark blue skirt
As well as this, I'm wearing a basic black 3/4 length sleeve top from H&M (this is just a perfect basic top that goes with almost everything!), and a pair of calf high heeled boots in brown.

brown leather boots
And talking about these gorgeous boots... they were a Black Friday find from House of Fraser online. Down from £65 to £45 - I'm happy with that! The mid sized heel makes them really comfortable to walk in, and the buckle details make the boots look a bit more interesting. It's just a little bit of a shame they're not the same dark brown as the leather jacket, but oh well...

pearl earrings
Simple white pearl earrings and a brown metal necklace with pearl details work as my accessories for the day. Here is also a close-up of the fab collar of the jacket. Super comfy!

real leather jacket
I am just one of those people who really doesn't like winter jackets, so I stick to leather jackets for as long as I can! Coming from Sweden I'm used to colder winters than what we get here in England (try minus 20!!), so this jacket and a thick scarf will do me for a while longer. As long as the temperature stays above zero!

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Budget dresses for the festive season

The other day when I went to my local Asda for some food shopping I couldn't help myself but wandered over to have a little sneaky peak at their George clothing collection.
(I just had to take the chance to do it since my OH wasn't with me at this time)
I saw lots of glitzy items in the corner of my eye, but didn't expect to see what I saw - a great range of of really lovely party dresses, perfect for Christmas and New Year's Eve - for the fraction of the prices on the highstreet!

The dress that really caught my eye was this Bardot lace dress with wide off-the-shoulder straps.Isn't it gorgeous!? I had to investigate further, and went online only to find that they've got tons of lovely party dresses on their website too!

How about a glitzy gold dress or a festive red dress for the Christmas party with work or friends, or Christmas day with family? The last one in the row above might look plain at first sight compared to the other ones with sequins and lace, but would be perfect for any occasion as you can easily dress it up or down with the right accessories. Who doesn't love a versatile dress? ;)

A little black dress is of course the classic option for New Year's Eve, and George has got plenty to choose from in their collection. Personally, I'm a sucker for lace dresses, so I would probably go for something of that style, but there are lots of other lovely ones as well. One thing is for sure - you really can't go wrong with black. Just add a few sparkly pieces of jewellery, a pair of heels, and voila! - you're ready to go!
I've got my work Christmas do coming up at the end of this week - perhaps I'll pop back in to George at Asda for a little treat!

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The home of footwear - Cloggs event in York

A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to Cloggs store opening event in York. 
Now 'what is this?', you may ask... Cloggs is a shoe shop with a wide variety of well-known brands, and they've been on the market since the late 90's. They started up when internet shopping just started to become popular, and they've now decided to take the step out of the cyber world, and has started opening up a few stores around UK, with the focus on medium sized towns to start with - hence the store opening event in York.

We were greeted by the lovely staff with bubbles and fancy canapes. Delicious!

After a brief introduction to the store and their brand concept, we were given little tags to hang on our favourite shoes in the store. Each blogger got 3 tags - a 1st, 2nd and 3rd priority, which we could hang on any shoes in store in order to add them to our wishlist. 
I fell in love with these black leather platform heel boots from UGG.

Cloggs had even arranged for professional pedicurists to attend the store opening event, and we could all get our toe nails panted in some lovely colour if we wished. I of course jumped to the chance, and didn't hesitiate to kick my boots off for a little pampering session.

Since I'm not a big fan of winter whatsoever, I opted for a gorgeous coral polish to remind me of summer and warmer weather. 

After having been treated to pretty toe nails, I went back down to the main bit of the store and tried on lots of amazing shoes. I've never understood the hype about UGG boots (at least not those big flat ones, as they're making your feet look really fat) but I came across these beauties on one of the shelves. I quickly swapped my priority labels around, and crossed my fingers that these fluffy tan coloured suede platform UGGS would end up in the post.

I was really impressed with the Cloggs store - it was bright and spacious, everything had its own place, and the variety of brands was great. You could really tell that it was a shoe store where they're all about the quality and the experience, rather than quantity - something that I really prefer to those cheap and tacky shoe shops you see everywhere. 

And if you couldn't find your favourite pair in store, you could simply log on to the in-store computer, and browse the collections online to then order to the store or straight to your door. Very clever!

I had a fantastic night at the Cloggs event in York, mingling with other local bloggers such as Phoebe from North of London, Sarah from Sarah X Sarah, and Faith from Music and Eyeliner.
Thank you so much to Cloggs for inviting me to this fab event!

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Win Gola trainers worth £100 - International GIVEAWAY

Earlier this week I wrote about my mini home gym, and the importance of doing a little bit of moderate exercise every day.
On the back of this, Gola are feeling extra generous, and they have offered to give a pair of trainers to one of the lucky readers of Fashion Infatuation. I keep telling you - you lot are so spoilt ;)

The price will be in the form of a £100 e-wallet, which you can spend on - so make sure to spend those pennies wisely ;) The right choices can even get you TWO pairs of Gola trainers!

So, which pair(s) would you go for if you win? Hop over to Gola's website, and let me know in the comment section which is your favourite pair.
I would also love to hear about your favourite simple home exercise, whether it's a power walk around the neighbourhood, or doing the squat challenge.

In order to be in with a chance of winning £100 from Gola, simply enter via the different options in the widget below.

Notes: This giveaway is open WORLDWIDE. 
The winner can not choose sale items, but has to stick to full priced shoes.

Good luck!

Thursday, 4 December 2014

A stylish outfit for the older fashionista

A different feature on Fashion Infatuation today - my mum is in the spotlight!
It was her birthday the other week, and she decided to fly over to exotic Leeds to celebrate it. 

When she arrived, I had a special birthday present for her... there was just one condition in order for her to get it - she had to model the items on my blog ;)
I had gotten her a black and glittery 2 in 1 waterfall opening top and a black pencil skirt from Bonmarché, and this is how she styled it up - isn't she just a natural fashionista!

The black crocodile skin imitation leather bag looks fab, and goes perfecly with the outfit. Such a great shopping bag as well - with lots of compartments it's ideal for a day out in the city.

And you know my rule... if you're wearing two different leather items, make sure they're of the same colour. Mama Fashion Infatuation is, to my delight, following this rule as well with these cute black court heels with a bow detail.

This bracelet was a Christmas presents from us 3 daughters last year. It's a From Soldier To Soldier bracelet made of tightly braided parachute cord, which is in honour of wounded war veterans. A very nice idea for a fashion accessory, and it supports charities too.

Her ring is very stylish, don't you think? My mum absolutely loves silver jewellery of unusual designs (just like her daughter).

Simple pearl earrings are classic pieces of jewellery that are stylish, timeless, and extremely versatile.

She's matching her sparkly mock layered top from Bonmarché with her favourite necklace - a chunky silver chain. What a great combo!

I think my dear mum looks absolutely fantastic in this outfit! She wore the top out on that Friday night when I took her to Leeds Grand Theatre to see the musical Dirty Dancing, and when the chatty taxi driver found out that it was her birthday he complimented her by saying she looked more like my sister than my mum. She does know how to style herself to look her best, that's for sure :)

And just one more photo, because I love her! xxx
Thanks for being my blog model for a day!

Monday, 1 December 2014

Home fitness - natural beauty comes from a healthy body

I’ve introduced a new category to Fashion Infatuation; Health & Fitness.
I think this is an important topic, and even though my blog is mostly about fashion and beauty, I believe health and fitness is part of beauty, and I hope it’s a topic you’ll be interested in reading about. As we all know, real beauty doesn’t come from makeup and face creams, but it comes from within. Therefore, it’s very important that we make space for health and fitness in our busy lives.

For my first real post in this category (the very first post on the topic was simply about how new gym clothes can give you motivation to exercise) is about how you can fit in some everyday exercising at home. I do drag myself to the gym 2-3 days a week, but sometimes there’s just no time, and at those times it’s great to have a little mini home gym. The pieces I’ve got can all be used in the house – even in front of the TV if you wish. So there’s really no excuse not to do it!

Simply start off with a fast paced walk around the neighbourhood in order to warm up and burn a few calories , or – if it’s raining or you don’t want to miss your favourite TV show – simply hop on the step machine. This little baby is absolutely brilliant! It measures time, pace, distance and calories. You’ll burn about 100 calories in 15 minutes at a medium pace.
I then usually move on to some muscle training, and I’ve got a few different dumbbells that does the job for this. However, I do actually prefer bodyweight training when it comes to working your muscles. Squats, lounges, the plank, and other ab workouts are great for this.

I also have a couple of tools in my mini home gym that will work your core. It’s the twist board (another great tool for when you’d rather watch TV than work out), which you simply stand on and twist from side to side to work your abs, and it’s the ab roller – which works your deep core muscles for a great posture.
The ab roller is proper hard work, but it’s really the best tool for your core.

I usually do a few rounds of the different tools, and squeeze in about 30 minutes of exercising in my busy day when I’ve not had time to actually go to the gym. It’s essential for your body that it gets at least 30 of moderate exercise every day. But just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you can be sloppy about your training clothes. I wear these comfy Gola trainers for my home training, and I also tend to keep them in the car so that I can easily swap my shoes if I want to go out for a power walk on my lunch break at work. 

Another health tool that is a new addition to my collection is this sleek scale from Ozeri which as well as weighs you measures your percentage in water, bones, fat and muscle mass. A very clever little thing!
Did you know that about half of your weight (up to 60%) consists of water? Water is the  most important component of body weight, but I was surprised to find out how much it was.

The normal muscle mass percentage on the body weight is between 38% and 54% for men and between 28% and 39% for women depending on age and physical activity level. My muscle mass is at a whopping 36.7%, meaning I’m very muscly for a woman – but I knew that already ;) That is after all what I’m working for at the gym.

When it comes to average body fat percentages it really differs from person to person depending how active they are. My 23% falls within the brackets for ‘Fitness’, which I am very happy about.

I have always wanted to try those fancy scales at the gym to see your fat and muscle mass, so I’m very happy that I’ve actually got one of these scales myself now. I always thought I weighed so much, but obviously muscles weigh a lot more than fat. Health is so much more than just those kilograms of the scale.