My Hair Experience At RUSH Hair & Beauty in Westbourne Grove

Hello to all my beautiful followers!!

Just a bit of an update: Sorry my blogs have been at an all time low the past few weeks. I started a new job at a PR firm and have been really diving into the deep end. I’ve also started a trial week at everyone active gym in SOHO (which I will be reviewing for you in the coming weeks, fingers crossed) and to top it all off am at the final stages of my postgraduate degree, which means I have been trying to develop my thesis – woohoo!!

That being said, I was offered a great opportunity to get a hair cut and blow out at RUSH Hair & Beauty during their Westbourne Grove grand opening!

Growing up with a grandmother owning a hair salon in New York, I’ve always been really particular about who does my hair. However since my 1 year anniversary as Londoner is fast approaching, I thought it was time to establish a stylist – and I couldn’t have gotten any luckier!

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The salon in the 90’s.

Keep reading below to learn a bit more about RUSH & my experience review. Plus, a little gift from me to you, so my readers can try out RUSH hair and beauty too! 

Continue reading

Hummus Bros (and why you should go!)

 

Hey everyone, so exciting news – Hummus Bros invited me to their Exmouth Market location to try some of their hummus and I have to tell you it did not disappoint! 

I love Hummus and falafel, so I was super psyched to be able to review a company with locations right in central London that offer both as a meal. Read below to learn a bit about the company and my opinion on why you have to give them a try!

A little bit about Hummus Bros: 

The company originated in 2003 from two college friends who wanted food that was both filling and healthy after having a few drinks (my daily struggle, ya hear me!)

The company has 6 central London locations:  SOHO, Holborn, St. Paul’s, Exmouth Market, Gray’s Inn Road & Eastcheap.

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They also offer some awesome extras. The Exmouth Market location where I went had a yoga studio below with More Yoga! For £10, new clients get access to all studios for 10 days. All locations have free wifi, and the Holborn location provides free meeting spaces, which is useful for work or university meetings alike.

 

The food is all natural and free from preservatives or additives. Everything from their vegetables to their meat and bread are freshly prepared. In addition, where possible they source local and sustainable products (which I love!).

Why you should go – my opinion:

Since I was a little girl my mother always had me doing things that were good for both my body and the environment, we even raised chickens because she wanted to ensure her eggs were free range and they were healthier because we knew what we feed them. (Side note: raising chickens is awesome. They produce the best tasting eggs and you get to hold them and pet them!) So knowing this company not only tries to be local and sustainable but also produces fresh food was an instant positive f17918729_10210776976813654_736248889_n-1or me.

The food was absolutely delicious too. The staff was super friendly and even taught me the art of creating your own hummus bowl (which took me a few go’s to figure out.) I chose to add a bit of everything into my bowl to sample what they provided. My bowl had a hummus base and in the middle had Guacamole, Freekeh, a vegetable mix with cucumber and fresh tomato, 2 regular falafels and 1 sweet potato and to top it off parsley, feta cheese and tzatziki with paprika.

To be honest, I was pleasantly surprised with how fresh all of the food was. So much so, I even went back for seconds. I had never heard of Freekeh before, however being a diabetic I will absolutely start to eat it more often!! It was described to me as having a barley taste – which I thought it did! Freekeh is known for having a low glycemic index, making it great for managing blood sugars and weight loss. Also, being low in fat but high in protein and fiber ensures it fills you up! It was the perfect addition to my bowl, and had a consistency between quinoa and rice.

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The Cons:

There weren’t many cons, however I personally wasn’t a huge fan of the sweet potato falafel. It didn’t taste bad, but wasn’t in my personal opinion as good as the regular ones.

Because the food is so fresh, it has to be eaten relatively quickly to fully enjoy the freshness in its entirety. I decided to take a small container to go and try the next day. While the hummus was still fresh, as expected the guacamole started to brown and just didn’t taste the same. The fresh pita also wasn’t as good the next day. If you decide to take some to go, keep in mind what will and will not last.

Lastly, remember that moderation is key. While I love hummus, I found eating too much gave me a bit of a belly ache. When creating your bowl, make sure you add enough of the other ingredients (be it quinoa, falafel or veg) to balance out the hummus.

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I highly recommend you go give this place a try! They cater to all types (soy free, gluten free, nut free, wheat free, vegetarian, vegan and any other “free” you can think of). You can find out more about their menu here. The staff was great, the locations were central, the ambiance was welcoming and most importantly the food was fresh and delicious. I absolutely will be going back to try some of their other dishes!!

Any questions? Comment below!

Ash xx

 

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5 Things I Learned By Planning A Wedding

1.Who my true friends areimgres.jpg

This has to be one of the hardest lessons I’ve learned in awhile. Two long time friends (who I would have asked to be bridesmaids at my wedding) showed how little my friendships meant to them. When I asked my friends, I understood some wouldn’t be able to attend due to it costing a few hundred dollars flying from the US to the UK, however I know I personally would’ve found the money for either girl had the tables been turned. The first girl took little thought into attending, then instantly told me she was broke. I completely accepted this until I saw her posting her new $400 hair job and drinks out with friends online. The second girl I have known since I was a kid, and when we last visited said how her and her S.O. were absolutely attending. After I followed up she said how she just didn’t think they could afford to go. Once again I was hurt but fine with this, then she posted online a week later how she just got another dog – which is a HUGE expense. For me, it wasn’t that these ladies chose to spend their money on other things, but that they made it out like they couldn’t afford to go when obviously they could. Just be honest with me and tell me other things are more important. On the other hand my great friend and MOH Jordan asked for her tickets for her birthday. Without excuse she instantly tried to find a way to attend. I really came to see how loyal and amazing of a friend she really is, and I appreciate her actions beyond words.

 

images.jpg2.  Anything with the word wedding attached will cost you triple

Wedding cake. Wedding dress. Wedding flowers – that’s right, 3x the cost. Depending on your budget and what is important to you at a wedding, there are ways around these expensive costs with DIY options

While I am lucky enough to be getting a specialty made cake by Gina’s Cakes thanks to the help of my Mother, an inexpensive option for those not fussed by cakes is to create your own. Shops such as Tesco sell layer cakes where for 1/5 of the price you can make your own wedding cake. However, if you have the finances, I totally recommend Gina thus far (I will likely be doing a wedding post after September with photos and updates!) Same goes for items such as Save the Dates. Lets all be honest, 90% of people will throw them out once it’s over. James and I purchased our Save the Dates on Vistaprint. We were able to customize them from hundreds of options and they were significantly cheaper than any specialty wedding website.

 

3.  Communication really is key in a relationshipimgres-1.jpg

Hopefully if you are getting married, you and your partner already have pretty good communications. However, planning a wedding brings everything up (including stress) a few notches. Make sure you are openly communicating with your partner what you want out of your wedding day and whats important to each of you. Decide a budget and where expenses are going to be allocated to from the start. This will make things go 100x smoother once you get the ball rolling. At first I told James that I just wanted to have a good day and the details didn’t matter. Which was true – at the time. However, once we started planning the day I soon realized that some things did matter to me, such as having a nice cake. You might not think that these things would matter but once you start planning emotions change. While you can’t foresee how you might feel a month into planning, you can keep lines of communication open with your partner to make sure you are both getting what you want and understanding the others needs.

 

4. You can’t make everyone happyimgres-2.jpg

This is another one that’s super hard for me to digest – because I like to make sure everyone is happy. However, I soon found that I was trying so hard to make everyone else happy that I was forgetting what I wanted out of the day. I had to let go of everyone else’s dream idea of my wedding and focus on what James and I wanted instead. This stands true to many things in life, not just planning a wedding. I recently had someone say to me “not everyone you work with is going to like you, Ashley. However, your focus is to make the client happy.” This is so true. In the case of the wedding, James and I are the client. At work, it’s not my colleagues I need to focus on impressing daily, but the client I am assigned. I can’t say i’m 100% clear of this burden yet, but I am working very hard to focus my energies more on the “client” and less on every single person.

 

5. While saving money is important, sometimes you have to payimgres-3.jpg for quality

When I was younger I used to say “I’d rather someone give me a $1 bag with $999 in it instead of buying me a $1000 bag.” Today you can find me carrying around my $400 Ralph Lauren purse. (Thanks mom!) Why? Because over time i’ve learned sometimes you get what you pay for. With wedding dresses, this was so true!

I was hell bent on not spending obscene amounts of money on a dress I was only going to wear once. As a girl with curves, it was hard enough for me to find a cheap dress I liked but also one that fit me. I ended up in tears more than once because the cheap dresses were uncomfortable, didn’t fit well and looked and felt, well … cheap. I ended up spending a few extra hundred pounds for a designer dress but it was worth the money. The dress is comfortable, made of quality materials, fits like a glove and most importantly makes me feel beautiful.

Planning a wedding or just in everyday life, you have to decide what to splurge on when it comes to quality. There are times where I initially saved money, but replacing the cheap quality product cost me more in the long run.

 

While I still have lots of planning to finish with just under 5 months to go, i’m sure there will be more lessons to be learned. These lessons can be applied both in the wedding realm and every day life.

Have you planned an event that has taught you important life lessons? Comment and share these lessons below!

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water – and why i’ll never use it again!

I’m a huge makeup guru (if you haven’t already figured that out). So when I see a makeup or face product being raved about, I can’t help myself but to try it. Lately, that new product has been Micellar Water for makeup removal and let me tell you – I WANTED to love it!

After seeing other bloggers, magazines and others rave about how great this product was as a cleanser, I went to boots as quickly as possible to get myself some! I grabbed the Garnier brand when I saw it was on offer.

However, this blog post isn’t going to be me raving about how awesome it is but why I was forced to stop using it. 

The Garnier brand had a few selections of Micellar Waters to choose from. I went with the pink bottle, which is “for even sensitive skin”. While I don’t have sensitive skin, I always like to try the sensitive skin option when using a new product, just in case.

imgres.jpgI am blessed to be born with good skin. I rarely ever break out or get a spot and when I do, it clears up within a few days. I don’t have any skin conditions that influence my face and I don’t often have the troubles of oily or extremely dry skin.

However, after 2 days of using this product with my regular routine, my face began to develop a huge rash around the left side of my mouth, chin and the bottom creases of my nose. At first, I assumed the rash to be from overheating, since my flat was a little warmer than usual. However, after a few days and cooling off my flat, I found the rash was only getting worse, not better. That’s when I realized the only change to my r17758163_10210689516947212_55285579_n.jpgoutine had been that I was using the Micellar Water with my night time makeup removal. After doing some online research, I found many women were having similar reactions.

While it’s hard to see in this photograph, you can tell that the lower section of my chin around my mouth and next to my nose was covered in what seemed to be a bumpy, dry skin rash. This photo was taken 2 days after I stopped using the product. It took about a week of completely eliminating the product from my routine and applying hydrating face lotion instead, before the rash completely healed.

Although I am really bummed about the product (since it was great at removing my makeup) I am extremely happy to have my soft skin back! I might considering using this product to assist in removing my stubborn eye makeup, but it will no longer be using it near any other part of my face. Please be cautious when using this product!

Has anyone else had this reaction to micellar water? Let me know in the comments below!

Pizza Express Pollo Salad Recipe for home

Every now and then I come across a recipe/food item that I instantly fall for, so when James came to me RAVING about this salad he had tried at Pizza Express I knew I just had to try it!

Lo and behold, it was just as delicious as he had described it having fresh veg, crisp lettuce, chicken and goat cheese. It makes the perfect salad combination of crispy, healthy and flavorful.

While I would literally eat this salad every day, the £12 price tag and my wallet had me thinking otherwise. This forced me to get creative. After a small trip to my local TESCO, I had all the ingredients to make as many Pizza Express salads as I like – right in my kitchen.

For my opinion on Pizza Express and how it relates to PR, make sure to scroll to the bottom!

Ingredients I used: 17467487_10210587581358886_2073225605_n.jpg

  • Roasted Chicken
  • Single red pepper
  • Florette Crispy Classic lettuce
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • TESCO brand wholemeal pitta
  • TESCO’s finest cave aged goats cheese (I recommend finding a softer goat cheese for a more authentic Pizza Express salad)
  • Pizza Express house light dressing

Feeling really hungry? Try adding a Pizza Express frozen Pizza or dough balls into the mix.

How to make:

1.Put desired amount of lettuce into a bowl

TIP: I honestly eat an entire bag to myself for dinner, so if you are sharing I recommend buying more than 1 bag.

2.Cut cherry tomatoes in half, cut red pepper into strips and cut goats cheese into small squares – add to lettuce

TIP: This is all based on taste and preference, I prefer to use half a pepper and two handfuls of cherry tomatoes to a bag of lettuce.

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3. Cut slices of chicken and add to salad

TIP: I buy roasted chicken for convenience since I use them in sandwiches during the week. If you are looking for a fresher or smaller option you can buy breasts and cook them as an alternative.

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4. Add Pizza Express dressing and mix!

TIP: Don’t skip out on the branded Pizza Express dressing. A little goes a long way and it really is a key ingredient to making it taste like the real thing!

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5. Cut the pitta bread in half and place in the toaster, once toasted cut into slices

TIP: TESCO has tons of Pizza Express branded items including their dough balls. I’m trying to stay healthy so I opt for pitta but if you are feeling a bit indulgent try picking up some tasty extras as a substitute.

6. Sit back, relax and enjoy your meal! I paired my meal with a cup of green tea and some Netflix17439806_10210587579718845_1590912002_n.jpg

Opinion and how it relates to PR:

Pizza Express, in my opinion, has a great brand and even better customer service. They are constantly providing good food with a smile. They are also doing well with keeping the brand relevant to consumers. I recently received a buy 1 get 1 free on a main dish both with my previous pizza express meal and inside my Pizza Express frozen pizza from TESCO.

While I sometimes am hesitant due to not wanting to spend money eating out, these vouchers are incentives that keep me eating in the restaurant fairly often. Also, keep an eye out on their website as they are always posting vouchers and deals. My mother and I went out to Pizza Express (for her to try this salad, actually) and I was able to pull up a voucher right on my smartphone that saved us 25% off on all food, which came to a savings of about £8-£9.

 

 

Cheap eats in hammersmith under £10

All Londoners know one fact to be true: eating in London can get expensive. Usually when I tell people I live in Hammersmith I get a response along the lines of “that’s a great area” and “how do you afford it as a postgrad?”

However, after living in Hammersmith for nearly a year, I have found eating out doesn’t have to be expensive! Here are my top cheap eats if you’re in the Hammersmith high street area.


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The Real Chinese Metro Buffet:

I have to admit, this is no luxury buffet by a long run. However with a price tag of £5.95 for unlimited number of plates, it’s absolutely one of the cheaper eats in Hammersmith. The buffet had standard options such as rice, lo mein, soup, egg rolls, small ribs, a selection of chicken dishes and desserts to boot. The eatery also provided “to go” options for around £4 where you are given a container and can fill it with any food available and take it with you. The restaurant itself was nothing to write home about, but if you are looking for mediocre Chinese food on a budget – this is your place.

Address: Broadway Shopping Centre, Bradmore House, Queen Caroline St, London W6 9YE

 

Street Eats Cafe: 

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I’m obsessed with this Cafe. Having a “family owned and run” feel, I instantly felt at home eating at Street Eats. Not only is the food delicious, but the prices are really reasonable for the quality. While I only recently discovered this cafe and have only tried their breakfast – I’m sure the rest of their food is equally as good and will be returning to have lunch very soon. A portion of their menu can be found here and has fresh wraps, sandwiches, soups and hot dishes all for under £6.

Address: 12F Hammersmith Broadway, London W6 7AL
Phone: 020 8741 6372
Hours: 8am – 5pm Monday – Friday, 24 hours on Saturday and closed Sunday


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The William Morris (Weatherspoon):

Weatherspoon is a staple of cheap eats (and drinks). With a wide selection menu ranging from Mexican, burgers, wraps, salads, pies, pastas and fish, there is something for everyone to eat. Most dishes are well under £10 and some deals on the menu even come included with a drink of choice. For later in the evening, this is one of the only places for cheap drinks in Hammersmith, so eat up during the day and drink up at night without killing your wallet!

Address: 2-4 King St, London W6 0QA
Hours: 8am – 12am Sunday – Thursday, 8am – 1am Friday & Saturday 

 

Bar Burrito:

Located inside the piccadilly and images.jpgdistrict side of the hammersmith tube station, Bar Burrito has been a go-to location to eat. Cheap prices aside, not only do they use quality ingredients and fill up their burritos, but they are also delicious! Living in Britain his entire life, my Fiance says this is hands down the closest he has gotten to a Chipotle burrito in the UK (even over the actual Chipotle here in London). The one time I had a problem at this location the management resolved it with great customer service. With a small burrito at £5.50 and a large at £6.50, I’d say this is top of my list of great, cheap eats in Hammersmith.

Address: Broadway Shopping Centre West, Hammersmith, London W6 9YD
Hours: 8am – 10pm Monday – Friday, 11am-10pm on Saturday,  Noon – 8pm on Sunday

 

Chicago Grill:

Those of you who find yourself in Hammersmith after a night out – take note, aCVuMPZKW4AAgmlk.jpgs these guys stay open till 2am EVERY DAY! They are located right across the street from the hammersmith station. Specializing in burgers, hot dogs and wraps you can never go wrong eating here. Specialty burgers with or without a meal deals range from £6.50 to £9, Hot dogs from £4-£6 and wraps at £4.99 on their own or £6.98 with chips and a can of soda. While the price is equivalent
to what you will find at McDonalds (which BTW is closed in Hammersmith for the next month or so for renovations), the quality and size of food is much more grand at Chicago Grill.

Address: 30 Fulham Palace Rd, London W6 9PH
Hours: 11am – 2am daily

 

** EXTRA – CHEAP DRINKS ** 

Belushi’s:
images-1.jpgWhile Belushi’s sports bar does have eats during the day, they are best well known in Hammersmith for their cheap drinks. With shooters and bombs from £3, wine starting at £4, and £6 cocktails – even the specialty drinks are on the cheaper end. Mixed drinks and beers go for around £3-£5 each, meaning you can still afford to buy rounds with friends without breaking the bank. While recently they’ve been charging a £5 door fee, the music, atmosphere and sometimes live bands make it worth it if you’re staying for awhile.

Address: 28 Hammersmith Broadway, London W6 7AB
Hours: 8am – 2am Tuesday-Sunday, 8am – 1am Monday

 

Hope this helps anyone looking to try some affordable eats (and drinks) in Hammersmith. It’s an area I would absolutely recommend exploring with tons of cool things to find in the nooks and crannies. Do you know of any great or cheap places to eat in hammersmith or London? Comment below or share with me via email at fashionfoodandff@gmail.com

Ash xx

 

 

 

Pinterest and 10 Items I am Lusting Over

Anyone who uses social media has at one point looked at an item and said “I want that“. For me, it’s every time I log into my Pinterest account (Follow Me) that I find myself pinning items to my “wish list.” The wish list is a prefect way to visualize and categorize the items you want, both realistic and not so realistic, until you are able to actually get them.

 

Items I am Lusting Over:

1. Black Louis Vuitton Bag: 

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I have been lusting over this bag for quite some time. The original photograph is of Selena Gomez showing off the bag. It’s not secret Gomez is a fan of the brand – in 2016 she partnered with LV for their series 5 ad campaign. While no longer in stores, this bag is my dream bag, with the black pattern, gold clasps and perfect sizing. A similar style called BABYLONE PM can be purchased on their website for the price of £2,800.00. Unfortunately, I’ll just have to keep this one to the list for now.

 

 

2. Coordinates Collection Bracelets:

I’ve al85cb00fb66ced683f4c6d73aa3cc3b46.jpgways been a sucker for sentimental things. Especially now that I’m getting married and moved abroad, I always find myself connected to meaningful locations in my life. I would love to get this bracelet engraved with the location coordinates in London where I met my (soon to be) hubby or a special location in New York (since let’s face it,  you can take the girl out of NY but you can’t take the NY out of the girl. xo gossip girl). This one is on their cheaper end and can be bought here for $170. However if I had the choice, I might splurge on their full band luna design. For a short time shop at 20% off using the code CELEBRATE20.

 

3. Kate Spade ‘metro – wild one’ watch:

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Over the past 3 years I have come to love some of Kate Spade’s work. She’s quirky and fun but still has quality and class. When I first moved to London in 2015, I would see foxes EVERYWHERE. My flat mates literally thought I was going crazy. While I’m not usually a fan of brown over black, I think this watch is a perfect mix of fun but still nice enough to be worn to work. I would love to pair this watch with a nice dress or brown vest. This design is a bit outdated, so you’ll have to go on a hunt to purchase this time piece. Similar quirky designs can be found on her website.

 

 

4. Stargaze Black Pearl Choker:

Two cd7c1ceb097471074b50b5273d7771ed.jpgjewelry looks I never grow tired of are chokers and black pearls. This necklace by Stargaze Jewelry is not only currently ~trendy~ but also simple enough to dress up or down. I would love this look with both a nice dress or ripped jeans and a tee. Priced at $27, its quite expensive for a small necklace but one of the cheaper items on my list. Personally, I haven’t decided if it’s worth spending the money on. So until then, i’ll keep lusting over it on Pinterest. It can be purchased here.

 

5. Burberry Trench Coat:

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Back in December, my advertising course took a look at Burberry as a brand including their history, quality and storylines and from there I fell in love. Their trench not only represents quality and all that is quintessentially British but is the perfect way to tie together an outfit. While for now its only an item I can lust over and see on the shelves, I will absolutely be making this a must have purchase down the line. The Chelsea – Extra Long Heritage Trench Coat can be found on their website for £1,495.

 

 

6. Lululemon Leggings (with mesh & pockets) 

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Going to Penn State, literally EVERY girl owned a pair of Lululemon leggings. Not only are they adorable but apparently their product guarantee makes them worth the money. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been devastated to find my leggings get rips or holes after spending money on them only weeks prior. I especially am loving these particular leggings due to the pocket and the mesh panelling. While I’ve struggled to find this exact design online, similar pairs with mesh paneling and pockets can be found on their website.

 

 

7. HP Sprocket Portable Photo Printer

90d785a597524757574de1f9af2a01a0Having just recently upgraded to an iPhone 7, this little product has made it onto my wish list. My finance and I are always adding photos to our cork board from our adventures but can’t always find the time to print them out. Small, convenient and reasonably priced – I was really excited to stumble across this product. Taking the fun of printing a polaroid and adding social media images – this product is great at $130 and can be bought on amazon here.

 

8. Bumble and Bumble – Don’t Blow It

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When I first introduced my mother to Sephora back in the US, she went on a Bumble and Bumble craze. That being said, I have always found B&B to have great products. As someone who has long hair and is constantly blowdrying, I always find myself interested in this creme. However as a loyalist to my argan oil, i’ve simply never taken the next step of making the purchase, keeping it to my wish list. With 5 star reviews online, this product will soon be making its way into my basket and can be purchased here for £23 for my UK readers.

 

9. Bean bag hammock chair

I. LOVE. HAM9264f6e64cd7cabfb65afc581220f3df.jpgMOCKS. So much so that when I traveled to Costa Rica in 2012 I stuffed a full sized hand-made hammock into my carry on and gifted it to my mom & her husband. While completely unnecessary for day to day life, this bean bag hammock has been on my wish list for quite some time. When James and I finally get settled into a permeant flat in London, I will be getting one of these! Imagine how many wonderful naps could be taken. Made and produced in the UK Le Beanock hammocks can be purchased for around £200 – £300.

 

10. Tory Burch Flats

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Similar to Kate Spade, Tory Burch is a designer I have come to lust over in the past 3 years. While these Viv Flats are no longer on the market, I would love to add a similar style to my wardrobe. Working in PR, I spend my days doing mixed things. Some days I am on my feet all day while others are spent sitting behind my macbook. While I love heels, usually they aren’t practical and I end up opting out for flats. For both business looks or with a nice pair of jeans, I could see these flats complimenting so many outfits.

 

 

So there you have it, 10 items from Pinterest that I am currently lusting over and have added to my wish list. You can check out more on my actual page which I have linked above.

What about you? If you could have any one item from your wish list what would it be? I am always looking to build my wish list and would love to hear from you! For anyone interested in how its relevant to PR – keep reading the paragraph below. Happy Monday!

xx

How it’s relevant to PR: Pinterest has recently also added two features which I think is incredibly relevant to the public relations industry in regards to sharing and saving brands. The first, which has been around a bit longer is the “bag” section. Specific items on Pinterest are now purchasable and linked to a website. When you pin these items, they get saved to your own personal shopping bag tab. In this tab you can browse and purchase these pins! This is amazing as it helps with a pinners problem of “how do I get this product” or “where is it from” and helps bridge the gap between brands and consumers.The second feature is a small clickable circle on the right bottom corner of a pin. When clicked, it shows other pins that are relevant and similar to that pin. This helps bands get noticed that might be overlooked over a more popularly shared pin.

Print media isn’t dying – it’s being eaten alive

Disclaimer: I wrote this article for a job interview, but liked it and thought I would share. xx

 

8:00 a.m. – wake up. Groggily turn off the alarm on my iPhone. Reply to an important email on the Gmail application. Check the news. Check Instagram. Watch snapchat news stories. Share on Facebook.

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I’m an alumni of a major university with a 4-year journalism degree, and I consistently consume my morning news through only digital platforms. Even you, the reader, are currently reading this online. Like it or not – the future of print media is no longer print.

Print media isn’t dying, it’s being eaten alive.

51% of people with online access are using social media as their primary news source, and this is no longer surprising us. Digital and social media platforms are ravaging animals, growing in size and becoming stronger daily. What began as a place to connect with friends has transformed into our main source for information.

Social media and the digital realm has become all-consuming in the revolution of print media. With Millennial and Generation X age brackets overtaking the market, the desire for fast and free media has become increasingly relevant. Two things print media struggles to provide.

So if the media we are consuming is easily and quickly accessible for free then what is the issue?

Content Quality.

In a world of free media, where anyone can share, alter facts and figures and post, there is never a guarantee of what you will get. As said by Mark Twain “there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” With recent growing concerns of “fake news” hitting the market due to altered statistics, it’s time to strongly consider if we as a society have overstepped a boundary.

We are the ones hand-feeding digital media and leading journalism to its massacre. We are the butchers and we need to stop slaughtering.

As consumers we need to step back and reinforce the importance of print media and what it represents. Surrendering quality and confidence in content for the sake of immediate gratification should no longer be freely accepted. I challenge you today, to purchase print media. To read a magazine, newspaper or public journal. To aid the same organizations that insist on quality publications and provide us the freedom of speech we so longingly fought for and have now come to take for granted.

You’re the future of print media and I challenge you to invest in its life so it can continue to live.

 

Sources:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-36528256

Image taken from:

https://illustrationage.com/2012/05/21/facebook-monster-for-adweek-by-brian-taylor/

 

 

Free sample of Estée Lauder Double Wear & Review

There are two words that I love more than anything: Makeup and Free.

That being said, when I saw Estée Lauder marketing on Facebook that they’re giving away free samples of both their Double Wear  foundation and Primer with their #ConfidenceUncovered campaign, I was ecstatic to try it for myself – and I was not disappointed.

Read below to find out how to get your own free sample and my reviews on the product: 

The campaign:

Called #ConfidenceUncovered and inspired by their Double Wear 15-hour Long-Wear Makeup, the new Estée Lauder campaign is going behind the scenes with inspirational UK women to uncover their unique stories and revel how and what gives them confidence to achieve their goals.

How to get a free sample:

The Facebook advertisement simply sent me to the Estée Lauder website which you can find here. Once on the page, scroll down to the section that says “Take away your 10-day Foundation and Primer samples” and submit your email. After clicking submit you will receive an image to show at any Estée Lauder makeup location. Alternatively, you can simply screenshot and show the image I have posted below:

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What, how and where?

It was a bit confusing at first where exactly you can redeem the voucher, as the website only gave select locations, however I found you can go anywhere there is a Estée Lauder makeup counter with a sales associate. I ended up going to my nearest Boots on High Street Kensington, which was fine. So whats the catch?  Well, unless you know which color of  Double Wear you are, the associate will need to take a little time to color match you and talk a bit about the product. I found my associate to be lovely and really informative. She explained that its okay to try a color that isn’t right because that’s how we learn what is right. She also spoke a bit about the brand personally and how the makeup really does last for the whole intended 15 hours. The most moving story she told me was about how when she was working years ago an old boss wouldn’t let customers return the product and how she learned later on one of the best things about the brand is that unhappy customers can return the product. “It’s not our money or the companies money, it’s Mrs. Lauder’s money, and she wants her customers to be happy so we take back the product no matter what.”

That alone made me love the brand!

Thank you Mrs. Lauder for great customer service.

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I was matched with Fresco 2c3 as my “perfect match”

Review:

I was pleasantly surprised by the makeup and quality. Starting with the Primer, it had a slight shimmer which I personally LOVED. I’ve never been a huge fan of makeup primers, however, this one made my skin soft, smelt nice and didn’t make my skin oily at all. The associate also showed the difference in the amount of makeup used with and without the primer. Using the primer, I only had to use 1/3 the amount of makeup I was using before, so you really are getting the most for your money. Also, as a little trick of the trade, since the primer is shimmery, it can be lightly applied on top of makeup as a finisher and highlight, which looks beautiful! The name of the primer is called The Illuminator and can be bought on offer right now here at £22.50. I personally will be purchasing myself some.

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As someone who typically wears Born This Way by Too Faced and is a makeup loyalist, I was a bit nervous to try a new foundation sample. I did find myself pleasantly surprised by the foundation, which markets itself as ‘The UK’s No.1 foundation’. Described as Long-Wear (15 hours), oil free, medium to full coverage and with a semi-matte finish, I found the foundation to be very similar to my Too Faced foundation. The Estée Lauder Double Wear foundation did seem to feel a bit lighter on my skin, almost as if I wasn’t wearing much makeup. Unlike some foundations, I didn’t find the makeup to disappear throughout the day, and found it covered everything with very little foundation needed. While you can see how little the sample bottle is (4ml), between the primer and the small amount of foundation needed, this bottle easily could last me all week. This foundation typically goes for £31, however this is also on offer for £27 here.

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**Note, I do not get compensation for doing these reviews, these are all my own personal thoughts and opinions on the brand **

 

 

 

Email Etiquette – audience, tone & clarity

Hey everyone – sorry I’ve been MIA for a bit.

Today I wanted to write about something that is actually really important to all of us – email etiquette. 

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In todays digital age, sending emails has become the norm. Regardless if its personal for chatting with friends, booking a dinner reservation or for professional use, we are all constantly connecting and email is a large part of that connection. I myself have three Gmail accounts just for personal use, blogging and planning my wedding. (FYI please feel free to email me: fashionfoodandff@gmail.com, I love to hear from everyone and am always open for wedding advice/ideas.)

Email is a catch-22. While it’s great because you can reference past communications and really think about what you want to write without a rush, we also need to remember that once you have sent that email, it is out in the universe forever.

That being said, today I came across an email from a university Dean which I thought lacked some really important email etiquette. I found it especially interesting because being a Dean is a big deal, and requires that you set high standards for the students who you are overseeing.

I’ll give you a second to read the email (below)… (names have been hidden to protect identities)

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So what did I perceive wrong with this email?

  1.  Well first off, it seems to be written a little brash or just quickly sent along. The email, when I read it, sounds as this dean was annoyed that there has been a bike chained outside his office and how dare this person force him to look at it every day.
  2. Not only was this email sent ‘to all’ but it forgets the courtesy of addressing the reader. This Dean would have received a more positive reaction from the start had the email began with “Hello students” or “Good Afternoon”.
  3. The statement “if you want to sell the bike let me know,” is incredibly ambiguous. Does this mean any of the thousands of students who have now received this email can fight over the opportunity to make extra cash on selling this bike? (Dean if you are reading this, let me know, I can use the cash.)
  4. Security should not be capitalized.

While this might seem silly to write an entire blog post over an email that simply wasn’t thought through, there is a really important lesson to be learned here. Having never met this Dean, he certainly has not made the best first impression. His lack of structure in the email and slightly aggressive undertones reflect poorly on how I now perceive his character. In my opinion, small changes to this email would reflect better both on his personal brand and the university for which he works.

Moral Of The Story: 

Think through your emails before hitting send. You are always reflecting your personal brand and the brands you are associated with. Check your audience, your spelling and the tone of the message you want to get across. People are reading what you are saying and notice even the smallest details, so be aware!

What do you think?

Post a comment below and let me know your terrible email stories!!

 

Ash xx