5 THINGS TO DO IN BATTERSEA, LONDON

One of my favourite places to visit in the Summer is Battersea. It's a huge district area in the South of London which boasts some of the best scenic areas, nature and hidden away places to eat.

I thought I would put together a little guide on my top 5 things to do whilst in Battersea. I've done them all in the last few weeks and highly recommend you visit them all!

Let's get on to the guide...

Battersea Power Station
I had never visited Battersea Power Station up until a few weeks ago. The old un-used buildings have been revamped into flats and apartments, restaurants and quirky shops. This has really improved the economy for the local area as it means extra places to live for new Londoner's and new places to visit for tourists. 

Battersea Park
Battersea Park is the main attraction of the area. The park is one of the biggest in London and is well known for its hidden treasures and wildlife. It is home to many different varieties of birds and there are different ducks which you will see nestling around the lake. Whilst at the lake, you can enjoy a peaceful boat ride and then enjoy an ice cream and a cold drink at the park's care afterwards.






Battersea Park Zoo
I haven't yet been to this zoo but it's something I am hoping to do before the summer finishes! Battersea Park Zoo is a children's zoo which has some of the coolest animals. You can expect to see a Vietnamese pot bellied pig, monkeys, emus and lots more. Why not visit with your children and then play a spot the wildlife game afterwards?

Battersea Dog's & Cat's Home
Being a huge animal lover, it was to no surprise that I was going to include Battersea's dog's and cat's home. I had been a few times before getting Elsie and the work they do there is amazing. They care for around 8000 animals every year which is always on the rise when more dogs and cats are left homeless. Do something amazing this year and give a dog or a cat a loving home.



The Catchmere Pub
After a long day walking around Battersea, you'll be left feeling quenched for thirst and peckish. The one place I really recommend is The Catchmere Pub. The pub food there is freshly cooked and served within 15 minutes of ordering. The pub has a lovely warm and comforting atmosphere and you almost forget that you're in London!

The Latchmere ~ 503 Battersea Park Road, Battersea, London SW11 3BW 




Go Ape! 
If you're looking for somewhere a little less tourist-attracted and love outdoor adventuring; then Go Ape! may be the place for you. Put yourself to the test, push all your boundaries and forget all of your fears by completing the outdoor course at Go Ape! It's always fun to monkey around! 

Disclaimer: In collaboration with Battersea Power Station. All words and opinions are my own. Images are stock images. 

WHITEWASH LABORATORIES ELECTRIC TOOTHBRUSH: THE CANCER CHARITY EDITION

I always prefer the way electric toothbrushes clean my teeth rather than the standard toothbrush. After a trip to the dentist recently, I was told that using an electric toothbrush not only cleans the teeth better; but is a lot more gentler on the teeth and gums.

Whitewash Laboratories is an oral care brand that I had never heard much about before they got in touch. We had a little chat about my oral health and I decided to trial out an electric toothbrush. I have given this a THREE month trial because I wanted to test it out properly to see whether it worked.

Whitewash Laboratories have teamed up with a cancer charity and have produced their charity edition electric toothbrushes. These retail for £24.99 and come in pink for women and black for men. For every brush that they sell, they give £2.50 to the Pink Ribbon Foundation or to Prostate Cancer UK to help support awareness and research.

These toothbrushes use rotating and oscillating technology to clean by removing plaque build up and promote healthy teeth and gums.


























The toothbrushes are manually charged with a base charing unit which has an extra long life battery. I found mine lasts around 3-4 weeks before I need to re-charge it again. I think this is amazing considering other electric toothbrushes that I have had in the past need re-charging after a few uses.

What I liked most about this toothbrush was the two different modes it has: normal and sensitive. Upon visiting the dentist, I was told to be more gentle when cleaning as hard brushing was causing my gums to bleed and were really red. I started off using this toothbrush on the sensitive mode and found there was no blood when spitting (sorry, TMI!).  After 2 weeks, I then switched it to the normal mode and found the transition easy and not at all damaging to my teeth or gums.

The toothbrush also has a two minute timer on it so you can ensure your whole mouth is clean. With this, the brush stops for 2-3 seconds on 30 second intervals so you can move the brush to another area in your mouth. I love this feature as I know I am not missing any areas when brushing.

I have been using this for 3 months now and am just about to change one of the heads to a new one. Head replacements can be purchased online. 

All in all, I am very pleased with how this product works and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who has sensitive teeth and gums. It's made brushing my teeth pain free, blood free and a whole load more enjoyable... and it's probably the most mundane daily task we all have to do, right!?

Disclaimer: PR sample but all words, opinions and photographs are my own.

CREATING A FESTIVAL OUTFIT ON A LOW BUDGET

We all know what typical festival outfits are made up of so if you haven’t yet purchased a fedora hat or if your denim shorts from last year are a tad too tight; it’s time to get prepared because festival season is here once again!

I’m sadly not going to any festivals this year but this hasn’t stopped me creating fantasy outfits that I would wear IF I was heading to one. 

This outfit below is something I have created using stuff I already have. I have a major tendency to buy things and never wear them but I am also a sinner because I more often that enough only wear items once or twice. What is the point in spending dollar on a brand new outfit when you’re likely to:

  • Lose the glittery rain mac you brought especially; because the sun has decided to finally join you. You took it off, hung it over a bin and completely forgot about it.
  • Accidentally drip burger sauce down your new Topshop top whilst being unknowingly distracted by the group of lads from Manchester with their abs and V-lines on show for all to see. 
  • Leave your brand new denim shorts in Mr-Forgot-His-Name’s tent whilst making the shameful dash back to your own tent at sunrise. 
  • Take your clothes off and do a strip tease (unsensible answer).
  • Buy an official festival merchandise t-shirt on Day 1 to last you the whole weekend (sensible answer). 

The UK weather is slowly improving so hopefully by the time big name festivals such as Reading and V roll around; it will be hot enough to wear bralets. I only have one myself but AdoreMe is a great brand to look at if you’re looking for some pretty (and also very sexy) and affordable bralets. 




AdoreMe have a wonderful belief; that all women are beautiful and should be able to wear what they want with confidence and without judgement. I don’t particularly like my stomach but an option like the Elvinia Bralette is perfect for me as it has extra material to cover up more of my skin so I can feel a little more confident walking around in public!



Fashion


I am loving wearing bracelets at the moment and bought quite a few when I was holidaying in Greece. Ankle bracelets are a lovely decoration; especially with statement platform shoes or trainers. Colourful beaded bracelets are perfect because they will look really summery and eye-catching next to your festival wristbands; which are actually all manufactured from the same company, did you know?

Denim shorts are a necessity for me; not only for festivals but for every woman’s wardrobe. I in-particularly prefer vintage denim shorts such as my Levi ones which are high waisted and have a true “mom fit”. Perfect for my personal style and paired with bralets or crop tops.

A kimono is another great option because they are light enough for an overcast but warm day and can be chucked into your bag. They also transform any outfit from a 4 or 5 to a solid 9/10! I would recommend checking out the PJ/lingerie aisles in shops such as Primark because they have some great night time cover ups which can easily be worn as a festival kimono. What’s more, it’s likely no one else has thought of this so you can turn up at a festival knowing there is a very low chance of spotting someone wearing the same kimono as yourself. Handy tip!



Shoe choice for a festival can be tricky. Will it be muddy? Likely. So, you won’t want to wear your brand new Nikes you got last weekend. And if the sun decides to show up by 3pm? You’ll have to suffer in sweaty and skin hugging wellington boots but I’m sure you won’t care by the time you’ve spent £30 on 3 beers and you’re having the time of your life singing along to Jess Glynne and her ‘Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself’ track. Don’t worry, I’m guilty of that too.

Finally, there is makeup which is completely optional. Do you go as a Plain-Jayne and love life even more knowing you didn’t bother doing eyeliner flicks this morning so you won’t be walking around in the typical UK downpour looking like your boyfriend has just broken up with you? Or, do you go all out and wear more highlighter than a student’s science exam notes or maybe go out looking like your 3 year old niece decided to decorate your hair with glitter glue? What ever you choose; EMBRACE IT!

What ever you decide to wear this year at festivals; you’ll look great. Remember these three things: colour, glitter and there’s no such thing as “too much highlighter”!

Disclaimer: This post is in collaboration with Festival Wristbands; the provider of all festival and event wristbands over the UK. All words, opinions and words are my own. 

MY IDEAL LIVING ROOM WITH BOCONCEPT

We are looking at re-decorating our living room soon because it needs a little bit of a refresh and the furniture is all starting to look a little ancient and in need of throwing out and replacing. Thankfully, Elsie is also now starting to settle down a lot more; so we have less worries about buying new furniture.

I was having a little look around at home interior websites and started putting together ideas for living room interiors. I haven't yet made any plans to move out any time soon but once I do; I can't wait to get started!

BoConcept are a furniture shop who design and manufacture all their products in Denmark. They have many UK city and global offices and have been running for 60 years so I had high hopes of their designers having an excellent knowledge of what looks great in homes right now... and I was right! I have put together my idea living room below.

I love minimalism and simple colour palettes; such as black, grey and white with added splashes of colour which is what this look is all about. It looks clean, tidy but also fresh and full of life.

Here's the look I have created.

1. I like mixing colours and textures which is why I had a little browse of their designer sofas. I absolutely love this Istra sofa. It comes in over 100 different fabrics and leathers and can be customised with less or extra seats and different leg designs. It has added headrests for extra comfort and separate cushions which are great when it comes to cleaning. 

2. Turquoise and grey are two of my favourite colour choices. Even though the sofa has a matching armchair, I much prefer the added spot of colour with the Osaka armchair. Again, all of their armchairs can be customised to your exact tastes and requirements. There's an optional choice of also adding swivel functions or maybe you would just prefer a fixed base like me. Why not get a matching foot stool too?

3. I can imagine a coffee table in my house containing everything and anything on it BUT coffee itself. However, sticking to the clean and fresh theme; I really love this Chiva coffee table which can be customised to different sizes, colours, top table finishes and legs. I really love the white against the other two colours and really love the way the metal legs are diagonally situated. Really modern and well thought out!

4. I couldn't resist adding in a foot stool; especially when I saw the Bermuda foot stool matches the arm chair perfectly! We currently have an over used one which the whole family use so it wouldn't be a wasted, unused bit of furniture in the house! The turquoise has adds of purple running through it so is perfect if you fancy adding purple cushions to the sofa and armchair! The possibilities are endless!

Disclaimer: This post is in collaboration with BoConcept. All words and opinions are my own.

THE BODY SHOP TEA TREE RANGE

Boarding planes, laying around in the sun for 3 weeks and then returning the UK has left my skin feeling a little sorry for itself. The change in water and temperatures has meant my skin is a little dry at the moment. The use of suncream and SPF's has also meant my skin has broken out over the last couple of weeks. However, we are now back on track to a healthy looking complexion, spot free and moisturised.

The Body Shop is the place to go for all skin care essentials. I remember using tea tree products when I just started looking after my skin properly when I was around 13/14. Thus, receiving the press release for this range which launches in stores from the 27th July, I couldn't wait to try it all out.

With festival season upon us, it's important that we hydrate and protect our skin ready for hours of fun in the sun. If your skin is a little imperfect at the moment, make it perfect by using at least two of these magic products!

3-IN-1 WASH, SCRUB, MASK* with purifying tea tree oil from the foot hills of Mount Kenya 

RRP: £8 / 125ML

I like to treat my face to a face mask 1-2 times a week; usually on a Wednesday and a Sunday. However, I also cleanse my skin in the morning and evening so the 3-in-1 face wash/scrub/masque seemed to be made for me. It can be used as a wash to cleanse, scrub to exfoliate or a masque to deep cleanse.

The consistency itself is a thick white paste with very small green beads in. It smells of tea tree (which is a scent I happen to love). I have tried it out in the three different ways and much prefer it as a morning face cleanse and an evening exfoliator. Of course, it can be left on for a little longer to allow the tea tree oil to really sink into the skin.

Like all tea tree products; once applied a cooling feeling appears which feels nice and refreshing. The three cleansing actions help to tackle blackheads, pores and shine. 


RRP: £11 / 50ML

This product comes in a glass bottle with a pipette dispenser. It's a liquid packed full of tea tree that is specifically designed to target those imperfections on your face. Whether you have bumps under the skin or you're dealing with the aftermath of a sore spot; the tea tree in the Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution will combat these problems. 

I have been using this religiously twice a day and to begin with had a very sore imperfection on my cheek. Within 3 days, it cleared up and I haven't used anything else other than this to combat it. I am really impressed!

It's a non-greasy formulation and is more like a water. One pump of the pipette is enough to cover the face and this should be applied after moisturising. 

RRP: £8 / 10ML

This little bottle is a blemish targeter which I used on my sore spot on my cheek and I don't think it really did much because it's a similar product to the Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution! 

The other two products however have worked absolute wonders to my skin and I am going to continue using them till I've run out and need to re-stock! There are also other products in the range!

THE TEA TREE RANGE AT THE BODY SHOP IS AVAILABLE IN ALL STORES FROM 27TH JULY 2016.

Disclaimer: PR samples but all words, opinions and photographs are my own.

5 YEARS BLOGGING & NEW CHANGES IN MY LIFE

11th July every year marks my blog’s birthday. The date that I was sitting at home and decided to sign up to Blogger.com and start writing about my life on the internet. Did I think my life was that interesting enough for the world to read about? Who knows. 

However, here I am again, 5 years later writing this post to say happy birthday to myself. So, congratulations Ashleigh for writing a blog consistently most days for FIVE whole years. 

THANKS!

I've been away for the past two weeks with no access to wifi, so I wasn't able to get this up any sooner. But here it is and I'm so excited to hit publish. So excited to document another milestone in my life.

The highlights of my blogging journey or ~career~ if you like are the opportunities I have been given along the way. It has grown and grown and sometimes I have to pinch myself that this is what I do every single day. 

Originally, my blog started off as a beauty blog. A blog I would write in-between going to college and working shifts at my local cinema. It was just a hobby but has grown into something a lot more. I never knew what I wanted to do with my life when I finished school and even by the second year of college; I was still clueless. 

However, picture this. I finished university with no job. All I had was this blog and I threw everything into it. I decided to get a fresh lick of paint, switch up my content and produce better photography. I'm still deciding what features will stay and what ones I will eventually phase out but that's a part of the journey. I am constantly changing.

I've recently collaborated with one of my favourite all time boho-inspired fashion brands. I have followed Wonderland Clothing since the very beginning so it was so exciting to work with them. This gorgeous Bohemian Spirit Romper* is made from a soft cheesecake material. The elasticated waist makes it very comfortable and together with the sandals from Primark; is perfect for an evening of demolishing burgers and fries for example. The bell sleeves have indian inspired embroidery and pom poms which adds to the hippy-boho personality.

They have a huge sale on at the moment so it's worth checking out if you have a style like mine!

Let's catch up and have a little bit of a heart to heart...

Life has been SO hectic over the last month or so. I feel like I've been stuck inside a nightmare if I'm honest. I'm tired of having to make others happy but I don't get to feel any inner happiness. I'm tired of having to put up with things that most people would walk away from straight away.

When I got back from travelling, something hit me. Self happiness is SO important. Self love is important. Being happy with who you are and confident with what you have to offer is important. 

I started by quitting my part time retail job. I believe in myself and picking clothes up off the floor is not something I think I am made for. A friend sat me down and said "Just get rid of it Ashleigh!". So, I quit. Just like that. I got rid of it. I have no regrets.

I then ended a relationship because it was bringing me down and I couldn't go on any longer. I've never really considered myself to have any inner problems but my head has been one big mess for such a long time. I often felt like I was going crazy, like I was imagining things. I was crying every day. I was shouting every day. I started lashing out. I started arguing with my family too. I wanted to escape every day. I didn't want my life anymore.

I'm insecure for a good few reasons and I was made to feel like it wasn't normal to feel how I did. I was made to feel like I had something wrong with me and even the "you're crazy, not right in the head" comments were thrown at me. Alongside the unforgiveable "no one will ever make you happy" insultMental health should never be used in vain but here I was already thinking I was going crazy but was also being told I am crazy and mental. Therefore, I am crazy, right? I must have something wrong with me?

No. I fucking do not.

I'm a normal 23 year old, newly-single woman who has a fucking massive heart but a only loves a very small crowd. People take this for granted and I'm sick and tired of giving my all to boyfriends and friends when I get nothing back in return.

Yeah, I can be your average pain in the ass. I like to do things at the weekends. I'll be mad if you eat all the red sweets. I get the last word in arguments and I'll probably be the only one swearing. But if you get my love; you get everything. My love, my commitment, my passion, my body, my life. 

But that's never enough. So I started asking myself the same old questions...

Why haven't I met anyone who thinks I am cool? Why does no one ever want to adventure the world with me? Why have I never gone out for a spontaneous breakfast in London? Why have I never met a guy who wants to create content with me? Why does no one ever make me a priority? Why does no one ever stick up for me? Why does no one truly love me for who I really am? 

Because I still haven't met the right person. 

I'll end this post by saying thank you very fucking much for following my life for the past five years. Do I see myself blogging for another five? Yes, I fucking do. As long as the internet still exists of course. 

Oh, and apologies for the swearing. But fuck yeah, I'm happy.

PREZZYBOX DIAMOND HEADPHONES

I always have problems with earphones not fitting in my ears properly which is why headphones are a great alternative for me. I have had a pair for around 4 years and they are looking a little sorry for themselves so it was time to chuck them out and get a new pair.

Prezzybox.com is an online gift shop that has quirky and unusual gifts for all of your loved ones. From cool gadgets such as the iPhone lens kit for your partner and vouchers for weekends away for Mum and Dad. Is your sister a wine lover? Maybe the LED wine glass is the perfect gift for her.

Having recently dyed my hair bright purple, I couldn’t resist picking out the pink diamond headphones which are only £17.95! They are very in your face but perfect for any girl who loves pink! Or maybe you’re an adult like me and could see yourself styling them every day too? 


So, how do they perform? Are they worth it?

For £17.95, they are very cheap compared to other headphones on the market. If I was investing in a good pair of headphones, I would probably avoid anything under the £70 price mark; so it was interesting to try these out to see how they perform. 



They have an AUX cord which plugs into iPhones, iPods and other MP3 players that have an AUX hole. The cable is a rope type material which is wonderful because it means one thing… no knots! Unlike earphones, there is no stress walking to the train station trying to pick at a million and one knots in the cables. Great for kids too might I add!



There are no buttons on the cable which I am not used to as my previous headphones had a play/pause button and two arrows that you could press to shift songs back or next. What they do have however is a volume dial which is great to control the volume of your music without having to get your phone out. They also fold up which is really handy for when you're carrying them about in your bag.

In terms of the sound, they perform better than I had expected. Upon reading the reviews beforehand, I read a few people had purchased the headphones for their daughters and granddaughters so I thought they would be okay headphones, but have a moderate sound level for little ears. However, if you turn your volume up more on your actual phone, the volume increases even more when the volume is turned up fully on the headphones.



They are not the greatest headphones to buy if you like to completely block out background noise and have no disturbances whilst listening to the Top 40 greatest hits of all time. However, for the low price, the performance they give and of course the look they have; I think they are great for people who don’t like their music too loud. They are also wonderful for little girls who are just starting out listening to music and have asked for a pair of headphones for their birthday or Christmas.

The headphones retail for £17.95 and are exclusive to Prezzybox.


Disclaimer: PR sample but all words, opinions and photographs are my own. 

5 THINGS YOU SHOULD DO BEFORE YOU REACH 23

I don’t like to think I have any regrets in life but there are certainly things I would do differently if I could turn back time and go back. The choices I have made in the last 23 years and especially the last 7 years since leaving school, have made me the person I am today and if I went back and changed things then quite frankly, my life would be completely different. 

I know right now is exam season, graduation period and the summer holidays are nearing. I also know that a whole bunch of you who follow and read this blog are likely to be a lot younger than me. So whether you are younger, the same age or even older than me; you can either apply these tips to the future choices you make from now on or pass the advice on to people younger than yourself. 

1. COMPLETE SCHOOL/COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY



As much as I hated school, I completed the 5 years and left as a sixteen year old with 10 A-C GCSE grades. I then went onto sixth form straight away, hated it and dropped out. However, I then applied for a college course and ended up with a diploma in Photography. Straight after that, I got into University and I graduated with a degree in Photography 2 years ago. 

However, what would I do differently?

My university course was at a college but was funded by a University in London. Due to this, my fees were much cheaper and I also had the choice to either do 2 years or 3 years. I really struggled with the whole ~uni thing~ and found myself not turning up more often than enough. I was still completing my work and meeting deadlines but just knew I had made the wrong choices. Of course if I could go back, I would not only change my choice of University AND course; but I would have completed the whole 3 years of University. I only did two years so have a foundation degree instead of a full BA Hons. It’s still an option to do whenever I want to but right now it’s not possible. 


2. LEARN TO DRIVE


When that little plastic green card landed in my mailbox a few months before turning 17, I was so happy. I could officially learn to drive and the possibility of learning, passing and getting a car by the time I was 18 kept me going. Sadly, I didn’t start learning to drive until I was 20 and had lessons for almost a year. I have touched on this lightly before, but I was involved in a car crash that knocked my confidence so much that I never sat down in the driver’s seat ever again. 

My driving instructor wasn’t the most empathetic so make sure to look for a reputable driving instructor. A driving school such as Pass N Go are a great option because they offer courses tailored to you and you can top up your account and book lessons on the go. 


3. INTERN AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE


I've interned quite a fair bit and have spoke about this before in my truth about fashion internships post. However, I’m now 23 and in the long, dreary process of looking for my dream job. What I lack most is experience so even though I do have a substantial amount of intern and work experience (actually in jobs); I wish I had interned more in roles that would benefit my future dreams. 

A lot of internships are now only offered to students because they don’t have to pay you. It’s now against the law to not pay interns so if you’re a student it sucks but it’s also great because it wipes out a lot of competition such as myself who would never be offered unpaid internships; thus a lot more opportunities are available for you.

4. TAKE ALL THE OVER TIME

When I got my very first job in retail, I was working weekends and evenings after college at my local cinema. It was an alright job and gave me some pocket money and free films, but like all other 17 and 18 year olds, I wanted to go out with friends and make the most of my summer holidays. I turned down so much over time given to me and now I look back and regret it. 

I could have used that money for so many things like going towards driving lessons, future travelling prospects and savings. Even though the thought of working extra hours is not that exciting, don’t turn it down if you can. Just do it and reap the rewards on pay day. 


5. SAVE MONEY












I'don't actually have any savings because the money my mum had been putting away for me since I was born was completely rinsed on clothes, makeup and nights out with friends when I hit 18. At the time, it felt like I was super rich and I was loving life. However, looking back now at the choices I made, I couldn’t of been more stupid.

I’m now 23 (as I have stated 101 times in this post) and I have no savings. Every penny I earn goes into living. I have bills to pay, a puppy to pay for and like most other people my age, I want other materialistic things. I want a car, I want to start thinking about moving out within the next couple of years and I want to travel more. I could have done all these things if I didn’t spend my savings on absolute rubbish!

If you could go back and change one thing about your life, what would it be?


Disclaimer: In collaboration with Pass N Go. However, all words, opinions and photographs are my own.

SKINBREEZE UNDER EYE BRIGHTENER

It was only this year that I have started to use eye creams and gels to protect the skin underneath and around my eyes. I am absolutely petrified of developing wrinkles around my eyes so I would rather not regret not looking after my skin properly when I reach 40!

Thankfully, I haven't got wrinkles yet but I do suffer from dark circles which emphasise themselves if I don't get enough sleep or drink enough water. I am always going to sleep at stupid o'clock so any skin product that claims to brighten up the eyes is something that always appeals to me!

Skinbreeze are a great brand to look at if you're looking to completely rejuvenate your skin. They offer salon based treatments in products which makes things so much easier. Maybe you are starting to get wrinkles or you have stretch marks you hate. There's probably going to be a product they have that will suit you perfectly.

One product they do have is their Under Eye Brightener. The packaging is rather fancy (and a bit hospital-esque); coming in a syringe plunger which you push down to produce the product from the tip of the syringe. I had trouble with this to begin with and couldn't get to grips with it. However, it's easy once you get used to it. Just remember to switch the cap to 'unlock' and the product will distribute!

So, what does it claim to do?

"Under Eye Brightener reduces puffiness and dark circles and helps to smooth skin texture around the eyes.
  • 35% reduction in dark circles
  • 31% reduction in puffiness
  • 42% reduction in uneven skin texture"
And, did it work?


I've been using it for around 6 weeks and tend to use it more as an overnight treatment. I use it after cleansing my skin and simply use a finger to dab the gel like consistency under my eyes and also lightly across the lids. 

I have seen a visible difference in the smoothness around my eyes which makes makeup application the next day a complete dream. As for the reduction in dark circles and puffiness; I still have dark circles which are greatly covered up with concealer so they haven't completely vanished since using the product. Saying that, my eyes have started looking a lot more awake in the mornings despite sometimes when I'm not even tired.

Skinbreeze products are available exclusively from Skinbreeze salons which can be a bit inconvenient but I do have trust in the products so would go out of my way to pick more up in the future. 

Disclaimer: PR sample but all words, opinions & photographs are my own.

THE MOST HAUNTED PLACES IN BRITAIN

Anyone who knows me in person will already know that I am a very spiritual person. I’ve never spoken about my beliefs and personal experiences on this blog before and maybe that is something I will address further down the line.

For now though, to celebrate the release of the new Ghostbusters film which features an all-female cast (gal-power!); I thought it would be fun to look at some of the scariest and most haunted places in Britain put forward by voucherbox.co.uk. The study was developed by looking into the stories behind places that are haunted by female spirits. The study revealed that the South East has the most traumatised souls in the country. Spooky…

Shall we find out where the most haunted places are in Britain? Just make sure you have a light on and you'll be fine. 



SPINE CHILLING SOUTH-EAST

There are a number of terrifying tales that come from the South East. The most scariest of them all is that of The Screaming Lady of Hampton Court Palace who is most famously known as Catharine Howard. 

We all know that Hampton Court Palace is where King Henry VIII lived and died. Catherine Howard was wife number 5 and she was only 16 or 17 when she married VIII in 1540. In just over a year of being married, Catharine was stripped of her title as Queen and beheaded three months later for apparently committing adultery whilst married.

Catharine’s piercing screams can be heard echoing within the gallery at Hampton Court Palace so I would keep your eyes peeled and watch your back. You never know what’s around the corner..

Hampton Court Palace is located in Richmond, Surrey and tickets can be bought on the gate for £21 or pre-booked online for £19.80


THE CREEPY CAPITAL

There are many places that are haunted in London but some are a must-go-to more than others. Budding ghostbusters will not be left disappointed if visiting The Tower of London. Anne Boleyn, 2nd wife of Henry VIII, haunts the grounds of The Tower of London so you may come across her headless spirit. If you head over to the Queen’s House, you may even come across Miss Arabella Stuart who was a prisoner in the tower and died from refusing to eat in September 1615. 

If you have more money than sense and ever book a night to stay at The Savoy Hotel, be careful when entering and exiting the lift. The lift is claimed to be manned by the spirit of a little girl; but no one knows who she is.    

A tour of The Tower of London costs £23 on the gate or pre-booked tickets can be purchased online for £21.30.  A night in The Savoy Hotel costs between £381 and £671.

THE NORTH-WEST OF NIGHTMARES

If you’re looking to catch mischievous ghosts in the act then you might want to check out The Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool. One spirit in particular can sometimes be seen looking at your belongings during the early hours so don't leave your handbag next to your bed! Then there’s another who’s obsessed with stroking guests’ hair. Even that would be more than enough for me!

One night at The Adelphi Hotel costs between £41 and £82. 



NORTH-EAST NIGHT TERROR

If you’re an empathetic person, then learning the stories behind roaming sprits will sometimes capture your heart and bring a tear to your eye; or just completely break you down. 

One of the saddest tales to date is that of Constance de Beverly who was a nun at Whitby Abbey in Yorkshire. Out of her control and wildest dreams, she fell in love with a knight called Marmion and so subsequently broke the sacred vows she made to her religious order. Her punishment was being cruelly locked up alive in a dungeon and she was never seen alive again. Her spirit has often been spotted on the stairwells of Whitby Abbey, cowering and begging for freedom and forgiveness. 

Visit Whitby Abbey for £7.90.






SPOOKY SOUTH-WEST 

Devon is always a good idea in the Summer, so a must-see is that of Berry Pomeroy Castle. However, please note that it is not for the faint hearted as it is roamed by at least two tormented souls. 

Margaret Pomeroy was imprisoned by her sister and starved to death over jealousy of her beauty. She has been known as The White Lady who died ever since and has been seen in several parts of the castle wandering along the corridors. 

Another one is The Blue Lady who is believed to be the daughter of one of the Norman castle lords. Her father raped and impregnated her and she was then made to suffer even more by being forced to watch her father strangle her baby to death after birth. It is known that her spirit purposely lures visitors and budding ghost hunters into different parts of the castle to make sure they get lost from their group. STAY TOGETHER, FOLK!

A single visit to Berry Pomeroy Castle costs £6.20.



Attraction prices collected June 2016. Average hotel prices as recorded on TripAdvisor.

Ghostbusters is now available to watch at the cinema.

ELEGANT TOUCH X ROSIEBEA SPOTLIGHT NAILS

You know what us bloggers are like... anything rose gold and we must have it. We become almost like magpies with the sudden urge to have our phone cases, watches and skin care baskets all in rose gold and copper tones.

Which is why I thought you'd all love this review.

Rosie Bea is a beauty vlogger and has recently collaborated with Elegant Touch to bring out her own collection of fake nails and eyelashes. Not only am I a fan of Elegant Touch but I'm all about supporting other bloggers and YouTubers.

These Spotlight nails* have 24 nails in a box (of different sizes) so you're guaranteed to have at least 2 applications. I found they lasted around 6-7 days before they popped off but I was wearing them on holiday so they would maybe last longer if you're not in swimming pools every day!

There's a wide range of different designs on the nails including gold tips and polka dots; aswell as plain nude nails too.

Spotlight are 1 of 6 in the collection and are priced at £6.50 a box. Really affordable and very different from anything else I've ever seen on the beauty market! It's a thumbs up from me!

Disclaimer: PR sample. All words, opinions and photographs are my own.

KALAMAKI, ZANTE - GREECE


I literally took hardly any photos in Zante; simply because I didn't feel like I wanted to. There's a difference when you're away with either your partner or friend and being away with family. I didn't want to keep waving the camera in people's faces so there's not many photos but what I have are cherished memories indeed :-)

Kalamaki beach or turtle beach boasted clear waters with little fish that nibbled your toes. My family are big snorkelers so were very happy they had spent a couple of afternoons swimming in the depths of the ocean with turtles of every size.

We was given free cocktails by restaurants pretty much every night. It turns out, I'm not really a fan of sex on the beach. Cosmopolitans however...

I was very lucky to receive some lovely swimwear before I went out to Greece. The bikini set in particular that really caught my eye on the website and lived up to its expectations in person is this little beauty below.

The brand is called Seafolly and is available from Coco Bay. Seafolly have a range of swimwear for bustier women which I was SO happy to read about! It's SO frustrating not being able to buy the prettiest bikini tops in shops due to them stocking smaller sizes. 

They also mix and match which is a wonderful idea because they have already established that not all women are the same sizes on top and bottom. I picked out the Goddess Bandeau Bra* which is suitable for D-DD cups. It has pleating to the cups, an underwire to keep you 'up' and removable booster pads too. It's incredibly comfortable and was my most worn bikini this time round!

I chose the Goddess Roll Top Pants* to match which can be rolled down to fit like normal bottoms; or rolled up to give you a high waisted fit. These were perfect for me because I'm not that confident in the stomach area so these gave me much more confidence to walk around the pool and hotel complex in just a bikini!

** GET 20% OFF AT COCOBAY WITH CODE ASHLEY20 **

We were super protected from the sun with factors 30 and 50 suncreams from Ladival*. I usually burn when in the sun on holiday; no matter how much suncream I slap on. However, I only burnt a tiny bit on my chest throughout all of my summer travels so far. I'll definitely be buying my suncream from Ladival next time!


I also made sure to take some time out for myself. Despite being on holiday, I found myself checking my emails every day but I guess I just felt bad neglecting my blog. So, I took myself down to the beach for a few hours with a bottle of suncream, water and my book. Would you believe I've read 3 books in 3 weeks?! Crazy.


We have all had such a lovely and relaxing holiday and we are already in talks of booking up again for next year. I would love to visit some other Greek islands so if you have any recommendations of quiet places to go; do leave them below :) 

Disclaimer: The brands mentioned are my travel sponsors this year. However, all words, opinions and photographs are my own. 

24 HOURS WITH TASTECARD

Food is one of my favourite things in life and makes an occurrence on Being Ashleigh every now and then. Therefore, it was to no surprise that when the guys at tastecard got in touch to ask if I would be up for a challenge; I couldn't help but get involved.

A tastecard is a card that you can sign up to to receive huge discounts and offers in over 6,500 restaurants in the UK. I had heard about it before from friends and family but had never looked into it. However, now I have one, I can safely say that it's a wonderful piece of plastic to add to your purse or wallet.  You can trial out a tastecard for three months for just £1 and can cancel it thereafter or continue your membership for just £79 for a year. This sounds like a lot but when you consider how much money you will save every time you use the card; it's actually so worth investing in one.


I was gifted a tastecard and some credit to use and was challenged to use the card a few times within 24 hours to see what I could get for my money. Baring in mind, I had a set budget and this was for two people; I managed to get two separate meals (4 in total, 2 per person) for £50. 

Firstly, we decided to dine inside a restaurant. To find out what restaurants participate in the scheme, we entered a postcode into the website's restaurant finder and came across an American restaurant called Brook's Diner in London.



That afternoon, we drove over there and ordered a burger and fries each. When we arrived, we informed the waiter about the tastecard so there was no complications with the bill at the end and we ended up getting 50% off our final bill! 



The second meal we got was a home delivery. We found out that Papa Johns are affiliated with tastecard and offer 2 for 1 on pizzas. AMAZING! It just seemed like it was meant to be as I inevitably have a Papa John's around the corner from me. Convenient!



All we had to do was click through to Papa Johns from the tastecard website's and then enter the long number on my tastecard when placing my order. There was no complications and our food arrived within 25 minutes. No questions asked. 


A lot more restaurants are affiliated with tastecard than we initially realised so now we always make sure to look out for restaurants in the area we are in that are signed up so we can save a bit of money on lunches and dinners out. 

Overall, it was a smooth and easy ride and I would definitely recommend tastecard to anyone who loves food and dining out as much as me! Even if you just sign up to the three month trial for £1; you can't go wrong. 

Disclaimer: In collaboration with tastecard who gifted me the card and some credit to use.  All words, opinions and photographs are my own.