LIFESTYLE: Getting a dog.. The Wishlist!

Friday, 26 August 2016
It's no secret that one of the things I want most in life is to be able to adopt a dog. I spend my weekends at the local dog pound and it's been pretty hard not to put together some ideas of the shopping spree I will have when that day comes. 
This is obviously isn't extensive but it's the little things that have stuck in my mind over the last two years of volunteering. 

I should probably address the giant hamster in the middle of the image. This is by a company called Unusual Orange, they make custom pet portraits along with the most amazing custom collars and leads.  I follow their Facebook page and know one of the people behind the brand, so naturally want to support them. I love tartan collars and leads and this fabric stands out for me, brilliantly priced too! 

From the inexpensive to the slightly ridiculous, a tent. For the dog. An indoor tent, for the dog. Oh, and it's £70. GULP. I just love it though and I am really keen on the idea of making a feature out of the dog bed rather than just a plastic tray in the kitchen. The reality is that I'll have to compromise on this decision and go for something a little less "out there".

If there is one thing that I have been really keen to learn about is what dogs should and shouldn't be fed. A number of people who have adopted dogs from the home have moved them on to raw feeding and a really small number have taken this to the extreme. Their dogs will regularly eat feet, ears and even whole heads of animals for their dinner, yet their dogs look so healthy and nourished. As I have been a vegetarian now for five months I don't think I could watch my dog do that. Further research into this shows that you can buy the equivalent of "ready meals" for raw fed dogs but I think that could get really expensive. There are certain dog foods that you should stay away from, such as Bakers - it's like feeding dogs smarties, so the natural meet in the middle for me will be a grain free dog food brand.   

I recently bought a Boomer Ball for a family dog in a last attempt to get him to entertain himself whilst in the back garden. A Boomer Ball is the one toy that never fails to get interest from the pound dogs, so I was sure this would work. The only problem was, it's out of stock EVERYWHERE. That's when Waggy Tail Groomers stepped in after seeing my cries of help on Facebook and managed to source one as part of their Pet Product service. 

Finally, after last weekend when I resembled a drowned rat after every single dog walk - a rain coat, for the dog. Wrestling with a wet dog and a towel is not fun. Well, it might be, just a little bit. 

Do you have a dog and have any "must have"'s that need to head onto my list?

* contains a sponsored link, but let's face it - it's about dogs and that's all I seem to write about these days! 

BEAUTY: A razor subscription service

Wednesday, 24 August 2016
Wind back two years ago and I was regimented about heading to my waxing lady every six weeks in a bid to de-fuzz at a more permanent level, especially after years of shaving! I got to a stage where I was so fed up with shaving and its usual array of problems; rashes and stubble. 
Waxing doesn't come without its problems though. High pain levels (it never seemed to get any better!) and a regrowth time of weeks just wasn't working for me. I would be so happy with the smooth results for about a week and then have to have four to five weeks of not getting my legs out and having to wear long sleeved tops. 
 It never occurred to me that the reason I hated the results of shaving was down to the tools I was using. I'll hold my hands up here and admit that I have been buying the cheap packs of razors, even ones that have had just one blade and no special features - expecting results of the "higher end" options. 
 I was recently contacted by Dorco to try out one of their huge selection of Razors and curiosity got me, just how different can a more expensive razor be? Yeah, well I was wrong. It's really different. 
For a start there are six blades in the Dorco Eve*, something which I have never experienced before. It looks like two razors that have been stuck together but this unique shape makes navigating curves like ankles and knees a dream! Let's be honest, no one has time for the razor cuts that just never stop bleeding.
The razor also has two moisturising bands with Aloe, Vitamin E and Lavender which helps with the irritation that's sometimes caused by shaving.
You should also change your razor frequently and I'm pretty sure I've read that once a week is recommended, ashamedly I'm admitting here to just having a pot in the bathroom or razors I pick and choose from. However, I'm now completely converted to the Dorco, so much so that I have signed up to the subscription service

I love that for just £5.45 a month I will be sent four new blade heads and I won't have to think about keeping the ones that I use on the "one week" life span. Another great point - free shipping. 

I'm converted - would you sign up to a razor subscription service? 
As I have signed up to the subscription service I am able to generate a referral link where if you sign up using this link we both get £5 off all products at Dorco. 

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BEAUTY: The £12 Artis Makeup Brush Dupes

Monday, 15 August 2016
I'm not quite sure how to refer to these makeup brushes, other than "the ones that look like oddly shaped toothbrushes", what would you call them? A quick google tells me I should call them Oval Makeup Brushes.. We shall see.
With between 3 to 10 times more bristles than the average makeup brush, these are set to provide a smoother application. The brushes are very dense, jam packed to the point where the base brush can buff in my foundation in about 6 seconds.

When I first saw these type of brushes it was the brand Artis and they had cropped up in a few youtube videos. As I am forever on the hunt for the perfect base my first reaction was "oh hello...." and then I saw the price and my second reaction was "oh hell no". 

So naturally I had a browse online to see if I could find some that were cheaper (as in not £60 for one brush!!!) and there were loads. Amazon and eBay seemed to be the most littered with options so I went for this set which was just £12 for all the brushes. 

I tripled checked that they were only made from synthetic fibres and into my basket they headed. You can get even cheaper sets but these were in the UK and I'm really far too impatient to wait for delivery any longer than 4-5 days. 

Hopefully they will live up to the high expectations that I have for them.

Dog of the Week: Storm

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Every week myself and Shelley grab our cameras and focus in on a dog who is currently ready for adoption at Cardiff Dogs Home. We usually look for that dog who needs a little more social media coverage, some more photos and videos to remind potential adopters that they are just pets waiting for their forever sofa. 

This week was Storm and to be honest I am pretty happy with how the video turned out so I wanted to share it on here, plus it's also an extra blog post #lazy! 

Storm is 10 years old and is just a wonderful gent who does not deserve to be spending his evening years in a concrete kennel. 

BEAUTY: Why I've ditched the gel nails!

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

I used to be a self confessed gel nail addict, I was that person who booked the next appointment in exactly two weeks after a fresh coat of gels and would shout to everyone who would listen about just how great gel nails are.

Short term, yes. Long term and cruelty free, no. Well possibly they can be cruelty free if you buy from certain vendors I guess, but to have them done at a salon you can pretty much guarantee that it's not. 

When I decided not to keep coating my nails in gel and soaking in acetone I started to look for nail care inspiration on youtube to get some motivation to put up with short, weak and flakey nails for a few months. I came across Cristine aka Simply Nailogical  and her perfect nails! She's also a holosexual which is just hilarious and hugely entertaining. 

Anyway back to nails, in one of her videos she mentioned how when trying to grow her nails she had previously used strengtheners such as Sally Hansen. All that would happen is her nails would get to a certain length and then snap off. Whilst watching this I couldn't stop nodding at having similar frustrating experiences. 

Turns out the solution for her was a nail oil that's only available in America... ugh! 

However, the main reason for that nail oil working was that it's contains Jojoba Oil and it's apparently the closest oil to our natural nail oils and the body absorbs this better. Science. So of course, I picked up a bottle (cruelty free) from amazon for only £6. 

I've been using this for the past month and a half and my nails are the longest (and strongest) they have ever been. They feel hydrated and flexible but also have the strength needed to keep them from breaking. I'm 100% sold on the natural nail look and have gotten rid of half of my nail polish collection. 

HOME: Are you making these 3 interior design mistakes?

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

This post might be a huge clue as to what I was referring to in my previous post, can anyone guess? 

While some people may have a natural, keen eye for interior design, the rest of us tend to approach the task as a learning curve. The good news is, you don’t necessarily need to be an expert to style your home well - but it does pay to know what you should and shouldn’t be doing. So that you can steer clear of making a decorating faux pas, here are three common blunders you’ll want to avoid. 

1. Your decor theme is mismatched 

Although it’s up to you how you choose to style up your home, if your decor theme is completely mismatched, you could be making a big mistake. Failing to go for a coordinating theme can be visually displeasing, and you may struggle to achieve the look and feel you’re going for. While there’s no need to be matchy-matchy, you should find you’re more successful if you stick with furniture pieces and a colour palette that work well together. 

To ensure that you stay on track with your chosen theme, you may find it useful to go for soft furnishings in complementary designs. From plush cushions to luxury throws and bedspreads, there are a number of accessories for you to pick from. When choosing these furnishings, make sure you keep your colour scheme in mind as this will help you carry your theme throughout your rooms. 

2. Your rooms are poorly illuminated 

A badly lit home is a huge interior design no-no. If your property lacks the appropriate lighting, it’s likely you’ll struggle to create a cosy, homely vibe, and instead you’ll risk your place coming across as dull, drab and dreary. So if you’re guilty of leaving your pad poorly illuminated, it might be time to make a few changes. For example, aside from having a central light fixture in each room, you may also want to think about adding some extra illuminations to really help brighten up the space. From placing a lamp on your bedside table in your boudoir to installing under-cabinet lights in your kitchen, there are a whole host of lighting options available that could help boost the brightness levels in each of your rooms. 

3. You have too much clutter on display 

While it’s perfectly acceptable to have certain trinkets and knickknacks on display around your home, it is possible to go overboard. Having too many bits and bobs on show can look cluttered and untidy, and it can detract from the general look and feel of your rooms. So instead of showcasing absolutely everything you own, you could break the habit and opt to only exhibit your favourite possessions. For example, in your living room, you could try to keep the number of items on your mantelpiece and window ledges to a minimum by sticking to basics such as a couple of photo frames, a candle holder and a vase of flowers. To keep clutter out of view, you could also make use of effective storage solutions such as ottoman boxes or a coffee table with in-built drawers. 

Making the effort to avoid interior design mistakes like these will help ensure you get your home decor styling spot on. I know I'm 100% guilty of point 3 and am trying to declutter various parts of my flat at the moment! 

*This is a sponsored post. 

LIFESTYLE: Charli doesn't Blog

Monday, 1 August 2016
  1. 1.
    a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style.

Also known as something that I haven't been doing in quite a while and to be honest I've completely lost all motivation to do so in recent weeks. I have posts sat in drafts that I have half bothered to take photos for and I just don't like them to be honest. 

Life is a little bit up in the air at the moment and all for positive reasons soon to be blogged about, well, maybe but my focus is elsewhere. At the risk of sounding like a broken record the blogging world has exploded, especially the beauty side of things and it's just not my place anymore. 

I recently wrote about becoming vegetarian and making more vegan choices  (I say recently, I wrote this in May!) and I'm still going strong. Last week marked four months without meat and approx two months without cows milk. I feel like there is no stopping me now and there is certainly no looking back. I've barely wobbled with my decision, despite almost every time I eat there is someone justifying why they eat meat to me. I've also lost a stone while in the same month cancelling my gym membership.

Recently it's been the busiest time in the work calendar, continuing to volunteer at the dogs home, helping have my niece on some weekends and everything else that is going on, I'm feeling pretty overwhelmed. Whoever said that we all have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce I kinda want to shake. It certainly doesn't feel like it. 

Youtube is a whole other ball game. I used to be on it with that and now all I have time to do is edit a weekly video of a dog! Our slow internet doesn't help, but that's all set to change soon. It's also more embarrassing when people who I know in real life find an old video when I was super keen, because the reality it that's just not me now. 

Hopefully things settle and I find my place again.

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