Thursday, 18 December 2014

Easy No-Bake Wintery Treat

These are one of my favourite treats for this time of year, I discovered them years ago when I went skiing in Sweden, over there they are known as Chokladbollars which simply means chocolate balls.
They are a mix of some of my favourite ingredients, chocolate, coconut and coffee. They are such a comfort to eat and they go perfectly with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate. These also work as a lovely little extra gift for your family or friends, just pop a few into a cellophane bag and tie up with some ribbon. 

Ingredients for 20 balls:

100g Butter
100g Sugar
2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
1 Tbsp Vanilla Sugar
450g Oats
2 Tbsp Coffee (mixed with cold water)
A bag of coconut flakes

Now time to put it all together:

Step 1 | Soften the butter and mix in the sugar in a food processor.

Step 2 | Add the cocoa powder, vanilla sugar, oats and coffee.

Step 3 | Blend until the oats are broken down so the mixture is less lumpy.

Step 4 | Roll the mixture into truffle sized balls.

Step 5 | Roll the balls in the coconut shavings and place on a tray.

Step 6 | Leave the balls to chill in a fridge for about 30mins and then they are ready to serve!

If you make any I'd love to see, just tag me either on Instagram or Twitter with @Alexandraahowe

Monday, 8 December 2014

Life is a roller coaster

The past couple of weeks I have had a bit of an emotional roller coaster, I went from a high note and then dropped down to a low note.

I'll start of with the high note, if you follow me on twitter you may have seen that in November I started working as a retail makeup artist at MAC. I applied for the job in September and after a loooooong recruitment process I got the job! I was over the moon. Since I was about 14 I've always loved the bright colours and creativeness of MAC and always wanted to be part of the brand.
I will probably start owning a lot more MAC cosmetics but I won't be biased when it comes to reviews on my blog and I'll still use my loved products from other brands, so don't worry about that.

From my Instagram @Alexandraahowe

Then just over a week ago I had a very unexpected situation occur. I'm currently a second year student so I now live in a house shared with some of my flat mates from halls. I had some criminals break into my bedroom at 6pm one evening. They smashed through my bedroom window with a huge rock from the garden. Luckily I wasn't harmed and nothing was stolen as I had my valuables with me in the kitchen at the time and all 6 of us were in the house so we all reacted before they could actually get into my room. Since the incident I've been a bit emotionally unstable, exhausted and haven't had the time or mentality to get blog posts up or be on social media as much.

I'm starting to get back to being myself again but it will take a while to be completely at ease, but working at MAC during the weekends has been helping get my mind off things. I've also just arrived back at home for the Christmas holidays which should also help me relax a little more.
Sorry that this isn't the most exciting post (apart from getting the job at MAC) but I just needed to get it off my chest and let you guys be all in the loop of things. I hope you're all well and my next post should be something a little more christmassy and fun!


Friday, 21 November 2014

Boots & Capes W/ Stephi LaReine

I bought this cape towards the end of the summer when they first started appearing in the shops but the weather was so warm up until recently, so I've only just been starting to wear it. I've joined up with the lovely Stephi La Reine to style up an outfit with this seasons essential. You can check out her monochrome cape outfit here.
I love how comfy capes are! This one is particularly snuggly and warm, it even works as a blanket at the end of the day. I really like wearing skater skirts with this cape as it's quite a slouchy item, so I like something more fitted and flattering for the figure underneath. Then of course I had to pair it all up with my chelsea boots which I have worn to death over the past couple of years, they are a must have for your shoe collection!

Top - Primark
Skater Skirt - Newlook (Similar)
Boots - Topshop (Similar)
Necklace - Urban Outfitters (Similar)

Have you been styling up capes this season?


Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Teatox On a Budget

As you may know I am a university student which means I have to live on a pretty tight budget so I often try and find a cheaper alternative where possible.
Over the summer I saw a huge boom in teatoxes and was intrigued, until I looked at the price tags. Most brands were asking for around £20 for a 14 day package, some juice detoxes were coming up to £100! I'm not saying that they don't work, I've seen plenty of before and after photos but I think they're way over priced.
I'd put on quite a few pounds over my first year at university and wanted to shed this off and cleanse my body from all the rubbish I knew I had been eating and drinking.
I'm normally a coffee drinker and I decided to cut this out completely for a few weeks and instead I started drinking the very refreshing Pukka Cleanse Tea which contains nettle leaf, dandelion root and fennel seed, cooled with peppermint and aloe vera. It only costs about £2 from Tesco and I managed to shed off almost half a stone within a few weeks! I don't completely rely on these teas to keep me slim, I do exercise about 3-4 times a week but I was doing that before I started drinking them, during and I still am, so I'm very sure that it was the teas that helped me drop all the toxins out of my body. 
I've now continued drinking herbal teas but I do have the cheeky coffee here and there. I've currently been drinking Twinings Green Tea with Lemon and their Peppermint tea about once a day as when I went food shopping they were only £1 for a box of 20 bags! 
Since drinking these teas I've managed to keep the weight off, my skin has improved a lot and for once I feel comfortable in my own body (my bank balance is pretty happy too!)
Unfortunately, I don't have any before and after images to show you, as when I started drinking these teas I didn't really think anything of it but now I kind of wish I had taken photos to really prove that you don't need to spend £20 on a specialised kit when you can get the same results for just a few quid. 
Have you tried out a teatox or now feel like trying out my budget version? 

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Halloween Fancy Dress Makeup Looks

Still have no idea what to dress up as for Halloween? I've put together a bunch of looks I have created over the years and to help you even more, they all have youtube tutorials on how to re-create them. 
No need for any fancy prosthetics, all I use is makeup and a few face paints! 
If you wear one of these looks for Halloween I'd love to see, just tag me with your photo on Twitter or Instagram with @Alexandraahowe.

Creepy Torn Up Doll

Real Life Pop Art

Creepy Wooden Doll

Corpse Bride/Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas


Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Corpse Bride/Sally Inspired Halloween Tutorial

Halloween isn't far off now and not often do you get have this much fun with makeup! I created this tutorial for you on Youtube which was inspired by Corpse Bride and Sally from the Nightmare Before Christmas. I think this is turned out as quite an elegant halloween look instead of super gory like a zombie.
I've linked all the products I used below, those I haven't linked seem to have been discontinued but I'm sure you can find very similar products.
It was so much fun to create this and if you have any other looks you'd like to see then let me know in the comments below. If you re-create this look I'd love to see! Send me a picture or tag me on Instagram or Twitter with @Alexandraahowe

Products Used - 

Sigma Creme De Couture Palette - Shade Blueberry Cream
Inglot Matt Black Eyeshadow
Ruby & Millie Lip Brush
Sigma Creme De Couture Palette - Shade Elderberry


Wednesday, 15 October 2014

My Summer as an Intern and Tips for Internships

For 3 months this summer I was working as a PR & Events intern at Umberto Giannini, if you haven't heard of the brand they sell hair-care and styling products in Boots and have salons across the country.
When I finished university for summer I thought I'd just be working as a waitress or something a little less glamorous and just have the weeks work experience I had planned at UG, but not long after finishing that work experience they asked if I would be interested in helping out with their latest product launch. Of course I said yes!
I had the opportunity to be a part of lots of exciting things from organising and hosting events at Boots head office and other Boots stores across the country and creating goodie bags for press and bloggers. Along side all the events and PR I did also do a lot of trend research so they could prepare and generate ideas for future Christmas gifts and styles for photo shoots.
I didn't feel like I was just an intern, I felt like part of the team. I thought being an intern would involve doing coffee runs and not contribute much because of what films represent them as.
I can't thank the people I worked with at UG enough for such an amazing opportunity and experience! It has definitely opened up my eyes to possible future jobs I would like to have and I got a real taste of the working world, getting up at 6am and getting home at 6pm commuting Monday to Friday was tough but so worth it!

My Top Tips for Getting an Internship
  1. Contact lots of different brands even if they aren't advertising an opportunity. Don't be disheartened if you do get declined, you just have to keep trying!
  2. If they can't offer you an internship straight up, ask for some work experience, even if it is just for a week. They will be more likely to contact you/accept you when an internship opens up.
  3. Send them an online portfolio of any work you have done, whether it be creative or written. You can say you're good at this and that, but they'll want to see evidence of this. 
  4. If you've already done an internship or some work experience or are about to, get as many contacts as you can whilst you're there as this can lead to a future internship/work experience with another brand or company.
  5. Create your own contact cards, it's an easy, quick and professional way of getting your details out to people. I would recommend I had some made by them and they are amazing quality and they often have some really good deals. 
  6. Make sure your CV is up-to date and adapt it to fit the job you're applying for.
I'm looking forward to applying for more internships and experience in different areas of the fashion/beauty world and I hope some of you will find these tips helpful when you're applying for experiences too! If you have any questions feel free to comment below or tweet me.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

LUSH Halloween & Christmas Launch Event

I was lucky enough to attend an event at LUSH in Nottingham earlier last week where other bloggers and I had an early insight into their Halloween and Christmas collections. To start off, it smelt so damn amazing in there! I was first shown the very striking Sparkly Pumpkin which features an energising blend of juniper-berry, lime, grapefruit oil and a whole lot glitter that stuck to my hands all evening. Then we were shown a demonstration of Sparkler which was pretty cool as its just yellow from the outside but when popped into water it sparkles out orange from the centre and spins around in the bath like a Catherine wheel! Northern lights also does this but its purple with a bright green centre to look just like the northern lights when mixed into your bath. They were the main Halloween ones I liked but there were also lots of soaps and gift boxes that snap like a cracker when you open them! You can check out the rest of the Halloween collection here. 

Then we moved onto looking at the Christmas collection which features lots of glitter, stars and cute animal shapes. The Holly Golightly is extremely christmassy looking, silver glitter on the outside, bright dark green in the centre with spicy scents and all topped off with holly and cherries. I loved the look of The Christmas Hedgehog  but I don't think I could ever bring myself to use it, I can't just crumble up such a cute looking thing! However, it does contain shea and cocoa butter which is so good for your skin, especially from the harsh winter temperatures. I tried out Yog Nog which is a very creamy skin drink that smells like fudge, it left my skin so soft and smelt incredible. If they had this as a shower gel or moisturiser I would have probably picked that to take home but it's a soap which isn't a product I personally use. Again there are so many products I could talk about so you can check out the rest of the Christmas collection here.

At the end of the event we got to pick 3 products to take home and I chose Northern Lights as it was such an exciting concept of how it dissolves in the bath and I just want to see those amazing colours explode in my bath. After hearing soooooo much about Snow Fairy I had to try it out for myself and it smells just like the Bubble Gum lip scrub that I've used for years. I finally picked Candy Mountain as it smells like vanilla and candy which are my favourite smells! It's also not an animal shape so I do think I'll actually use it instead of having it as a cute decoration in my room.

It was so lovely to meet lots of other bloggers that live in or near Nottingham, I've never really had a chance to before and I hope to become good friends with them and meet up again in the future. 
Thank you to LUSH for hosting the event and offering us lots of yummy sweets and cake as well as a few products to take home. 
Will you be trying any of these products out this Halloween or Christmas?

If you haven't already entered, check out my giveaway here where you can win a £20 ASOS voucher!

Friday, 3 October 2014

Steal the Style: Capes

This Autumn/Winter Burberry have brought out a whole range of capes in a whole bunch of styles and of course it wasn't long till the high street started to feature them too. Now, not everyone has several £100's to spend on a single item of clothing so I've found some similar styles at high street prices! 

Just looking at the close up of this cape you can see how soft it looks! It has a lovely sheen to it and features the classy Burberry print, but is it worth £650? I don't think I could ever justify it!

This was the closest dupe I could find, I know the colours aren't exactly the same but the style of it is pretty much the same. It is made completely from Acrylic so it may not have as much softness as the Burberry one but at £25 can you really complain? 

Out of all the Burberry capes this is one of my favourites, I love rich warm tones so that's probably the main thing that draws me to it. This one isn't as soft as the other Burberry cape as its 85% wool and 15% Cashmere, this does however give the cape more structure. 

I actually think this one looks much comfier and it's only made from acrylic. The colours again are so rich and warm and you can see it has a very similar print style to the Burberry one. You can look just as stylish but for £870 cheaper! 

If you haven't already entered, check out my giveaway here where you can win a £20 ASOS voucher, if you win it you could get one of these capes for just £5! 


Monday, 29 September 2014

200 Followers Giveaway!

This weekend I reached 200 followers on Bloglovin! When I decided to start blogging along side my Youtube channel I was so worried that no one would ever follow my blog and that it wouldn't catch on but now it's so lovely to read your comments about you liking my content and to see my followers slowly but surely creeping up. As a thank you I am going to be giving away a £20 ASOS voucher along with a few other surprise little bits and pieces.
ASOS is one of my favourite places to shop as you can get such a variety of brands, clothing, accessories and beauty products. It's also great for us students as they always have some sort of discount going on. As everyone has different styles I thought I would do a voucher so you can use it on something you've been eyeing up for the past few months or for a lovely impulse buy.

You can enter my giveaway using the Rafflecopter app below and the rules are as follows;
You must follow my blog on Bloglovin as this is where I reached the goal but all other entries are optional, the more you do the more chances you have! The giveaway is running for 2 weeks and will end at midnight on Sunday October 12th and the winner should be announced within the next few days after the closing date.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I look forward to seeing what the future holds for me and my blog and again a big thank you to each and every one of you for supporting me.

Friday, 26 September 2014

My Everyday Autumn Makeup Look

The final look using the products mentioned in this post. Photo from my Instagram @Alexandraahowe
I originally wrote this post for Chloe at but I thought I would also post it for you guys to see.
I went on a bike ride the other day and saw conkers mixed in with fallen leaves on the pathways so I’m now officially calling it Autumn. When Autumn comes along I say goodbye to bronzer and coral shades and move onto deeper pinks and a paler skin tone. 

For my base I use one of my all-time favourite products the Porefessional by Benefit, I use it all year round as it’s perfect for creating an even base and reducing the amount of oils on your skin. Then for foundation I use the MAC Face and Body Foundation (the palest shade of course) with my Sigma F80 Flat Kabuki Brush and just apply a thin layer and buff it right into the skin. To conceal my dark circles and blemishes I use the Bourjois Healthy Mix Concealer and just use my fingers to apply this. Before I set the foundation and concealer I apply Moon Beam by Benefit to my cheek bones as a soft highlight with my fingers. Using the Real Techniques Powder Brush I set the base with the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural and then finish the skin off by applying the MAC Blushbaby Sheertone Blusher with the Real Techniques Blush Brush.

For the eyes and lips I start off by filling in my brows using the HD Brows Kit with the Sigma E65 Small Angle brush, at the moment I'm using the Dark Brown shade but this varies depending on my hair colour. As a base for my eyes I use the MAC Painterly Paint Pot just with my fingers and take this write up to the brows and then to set it I use the MAC Eye Shadow in Brulé with the Sigma E40 Tapered Blending brush. For my eyeliner I use the Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink with the MAC 263 brush which is a really sharp angled brush which creates the perfect winged eyeliner. To finish off the eye I use the Bobbi Brown Smokey Eye Mascara which is just amazing! Trust me.
Then to finish off the entire look I use the MAC Lustre Lipstick in Plumful and just apply that from the stick, it's definitely a staple Autumn lipstick to own! 

What are your staple Autumn products?


Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Fashion News: Game of Thrones Stars Become Face of Fashion Brands

Some of you may know from the occasional tweet that I'm quite a fan of the TV series Game of Thrones and recently I've noticed that some of the actors have now become the face of big fashion brands. This is one of the first shows other than reality or soaps that I've seen several actors work along side fashion brands, I keep wondering who will be next from the show to sign up, my bets are on Emilia Clarke also known as Daenerys Targaryen.

Sophie Turner normally known as Sansa Stark in the show is currently the face of Karen Millen. She has gorgeous red hair and pale skin that works beautifully with the warm colours and floral patterns in the collection she is modelling.

"We really admire sophie's talent and ambition. She has a real presence and warmth, great personal style and is brimming with confidence and energy. She was a natural choice for us." - Karen Millen Insider.

At just 18 I can imagine there will be plenty more modelling opportunities for Sophie either with Karen Millen or many other brands. I'm looking forward to seeing her again in season 5 next year, and maybe some more shows or films in the future. 

Now onto Kit Harington also known as Jon Snow. I'll start off by expressing my absolute desire for this man, he is just pwoar! He's currently the face of Jimmy Choo mens clothing and their new fragrance. In the show he wears a lot of dark coloured clothes and is usually layered in lots of animal skins, so it's nice to see him all suited up for a change. He's still in dark colours, but I think they just suit him perfectly, especially with his long dark locks and facial hair. 
'It is incredibly exciting to work with a brand that is so highly regarded in fashion so it is a real honour to be the face of their campaign.' - Kit Harington

In TV series like Game of Thrones you tend to grow a connection with the character they are, so it is quite hard to see them as someone else, but I felt that these two brands have picked styles that almost match up with the characters personalities as well as their personal styles.

I feel like this post is slightly different to my norm, but if you would like to see more fashion or beauty news type posts, please let me know in the comments! 

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Malteser Tiffin Recipe

One of my all time favourite no bake treats are chocolate tiffins and then one of my favourite chocolates are Maltesers, so why not add the two together to create one hell of a delicious treat!?
This recipe is super easy and only requires a few ingredients to create soft, biscuity and chocolatey goodness! If you aren't a fan of Maltesers you can just simply swap them for one of your favourite chocolates.

Ingredients for 16 bars:

For the base:
400g Milk Chocolate
200g Butter
4 Tbsp of Golden Syrup
250g Digestive Biscuits
A big bag of maltesers

For the topping:
300g Milk Chocolate
30g Butter
1 Tbsp of Golden Syrup

Now time to put it all together:

Step 1 | Place a heat-proof bowl over a pan of simmering water and melt the chocolate, butter and golden syrup together. Stir occasionally until it's smooth and creamy without any lumps. Then take off the heat.

Step 2 |  In a sandwich bag crush the biscuits and Maltesers with a rolling pin until it's mainly crumbs but a few larger pieces of biscuit and whole Maltesers adds a bit of extra crunch. 

Step 3 | Add the biscuits and Maltesers into the melted chocolate and mix together until it's well combined.

Step 4 | Line a 30cm baking tray with baking paper and evenly press down the mixture into the tray making sure it reaches right to the edges.

Step 5 | Repeat the process of melting the milk chocolate, butter and syrup for the topping and pour evenly on top of the biscuity layer in the tray.

Step 6 | Cover the tray in cling film and leave in the fridge for a couple of hours to cool and then cut into bars and enjoy!

If you make any I'd love to see, just tag me either on Instagram or Twitter with @Alexandraahowe

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Floral Fatale

This Autumn/Winter dark florals are back in trend and I am loving it! I fell in love with this graphic print skirt from Topshop that i bought recently, not only is it super pretty but the material is also really comfortable. I've featured this kimono before in an outfit post, it such a great item to have in your wardrobe as it can really dress up an outfit without being a heavy jacket. The little bag from H&M is perfect for a night out as it's small but big enough for all you need, it zips up and it'll pretty much work with any outfit. I am so ready for the Autumn now, my tan has gone, my dark hair is back and the fashion is much more my style!

Skirt & Necklace - Topshop / Kimono - Missguided / Bag & Top- H&M / Shoes - ASOS 
Lipstick - Captive by MAC / Nails - Pillow Fight by Ciate


Sunday, 7 September 2014

My Autumn/Winter Nail Polish Picks

One of my guilty pleasures is nail polish. I have a stupid amount for someone who doesn't do it as a job but I just feel like my hands and feet are naked without it. As the autumn will be soon upon us I thought I'd put together my favourite autumn and winter shades from my collection. 

On the catwalk for A/W 14 there was a noticeable trend of sci-fi and fantasy so I picked out two polishes that fit along perfectly with this trend which are Soho Silver by Nails Inc a beautiful silver and Pacific by BarryM a very mystical ocean blue.
For the classic deep green I picked out Watermelon by BarryM which is a high shine polish so it looks very glossy. 
I love the burgundy plum shades that feature in these seasons and No.7 Temptress and Kiko 243 Plum Red are perfect, they're both very similar shades but Temptress has more purple undertones and Kiko has more red. 
Now time for the nudes shades! Chinchilly by Essie is a lovely pale grey with a hint of brown and I love the name as it very much is the colour of a chinchilla. For a more purple shade, Pillow Fight by Ciaté is great, it's kind of like a lavender grey and then Vanilla by BarryM is the perfect matte nude shade, this has been one of my favourites recently, it's such a beautifully soft shade. 
Then for the final shade I picked out Matt White by BarryM as monochrome has been a major trend and continues to be during the cooler months. I think if it's worn right, white polish can look very elegant.
Do you wear any of these shades or will any of them be joining your collection this autumn/winter?


Sunday, 31 August 2014

Pink Lemonade Party

On the 2nd of September my sister will be turning 21, so I decided to plan her a really pretty party. We had to do it a few days earlier so that some of our family and her friends could come down. 
I was inspired by my sisters Pinterest board she had created which was all about parties and I tried to incorporate as many of these photos into one party without her knowing. Some of the main inspiring images are below.
In the end I went for a pink lemonade theme, so lots of pink, yellow and pretty cute things. 
The decorations were mostly from from Party Delights and Amazon but a few were also from IKEA and local stores. 
I'd made a whole load of bunting for her 18th birthday which we reused along side some bunting that said 'Time to drink champagne and dance on the table' across our back doors. 
I put together a little ice cream station where you could pick your choice of toppings in cute little tubs and we had cocktails in milk bottles which had our names on little stick-on chalk boards. 

 I attempted cake pops for the first time which actually went quite well, not perfectly but better than expected. The cupcakes were made by The Cupcake Fairy and the cake was made by Marie Green who are from the Worcestershire area if you want them to make anything for your own party. We did also have savoury food which was pretty much all from M&S in their made to order service.
Overall, it was a great success and my sister was very happy, as well as the guests. What's great about most the decorations is that we can use them again! They'll probably be used for my own 21st! 
I'll be popping some of these images on my Pinterest if you want to pin them for some inspiration.

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