Top Packing Tips for Travelling Light

Top Packing Tips for Travelling Light


Choosing the right carry-on hand luggage is half the battle when it comes to short-haul or weekend travel. Most airlines have strict regulations around the size and weight of your bag, but getting it right and packing smart can not only save you money, but also save you valuable time in unpacking and finding everything quicker when you reach your destination.

We’ve teamed up with Storksak to share top tips on how to keep travelling as light and stress free as possible.

Choose The Right Bag

A soft bag or case allows you to squeeze in lots more than a harder case. If you’re travelling by plane, don’t forget to make sure that you adhere to your airline’s regulations by checking weight and dimensions in advance to ensure your luggage fits into the overhead compartments. Storksak’s Cabin Carry-On wheeled bag not only looks great with its unisex and contemporary design, but it also fits into most airline overhead compartments. The Storksak Travel collection has been designed to work cleverly together; the shoulder bag features a back slip pocket which conveniently slots over the frame of the Cabin bag.

Find the Cabin and matching Shoulder Bag here

Roll, Don’t Fold

Rolling your clothes can save space and prevent creases – it takes a bit more time, but allows you to pack more in. For added storage, place rolled socks, belts and smaller items inside your shoes and see how much space you can save.

The unique packing organiser system comes included in the Cabin and Duffle bags. Shop the Cabin and Duffle here.

Keep Organised

Using packing cubes are a great way to save space and stay organised; perfect for separating your clothes and smaller items, so that you can find everything quickly and easily. Storksak’s Cabin Carry-On bag comes with a unique smart fold-away hanging organiser system, complete with matching packing block. The organiser system allows you to pack your clothes into each compartment separated into underwear, clothes, toiletries.
You can even create your own bespoke compartments using the easy to adjust velcro shelves. Once you arrive at your destination, you just lift out the internal organiser system and hang inside a wardrobe or door. Simply pack, remove and hang up!

Shop the Cabin here

Scale It Down

Swap those heavy books for a kindle and keep all your entertainment on a tablet which take much less space and weight. Don’t forget to make sure all your electronic devices are charged – there’s nothing worse than realising you have low battery when travelling. It goes without saying that you need to pack the different chargers for each of your devices.
Make sure you keep all your cables neatly stored away in your bag’s pockets so they don’t get tangled and are easy to find when you’re on the move.

Shop the Storksak Travel Collection which has plenty of pockets to keep you organised.


STORKSAK TRAVEL – The Smart Way To Travel from Storksak on Vimeo.

Best Candles For Relaxation

Best Candles For Relaxation


It’s usual for us to feel a little bit mopey during this time of year. The nights are getting colder and the chill of winter is setting in. It also seems far easier to become stressed, and why wouldn’t it? Christmas is fast approaching and nothing is prepared, car doors are frozen shut and the heating bills have started to creep up…

Well, winter doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom; the colder months are great for so many things! Wrapping up in soft jumpers, buying Christmas presents for friends and family and taking long, hot, relaxing baths are some of our favourite perks of winter. And just in time for all that loveliness, we bring you the perfect accompaniment to a relaxing and rejuvenating bath – scented candles.

The right scented candle isn’t only perfect for relaxation, it can make your entire home smell wonderful and provide you with the perfect finishing touch to your décor. What’s more, they make great presents! Obviously, we recommend buying them for yourself first so you can trial them and figure out which brands and scents you love (gift-giving is better the more relaxed you are).

We’ve put together a list of the best candles that will keep you relaxed and feeling good all winter:

WoodWick Exotic Spices Trilogy Large Candle
If you’re looking to evoke all the lovely feelings of winter – crackling fires, woody scents and hot mulled wine – this candle is perfect for you.

WoodWick candles are famous for the soothing sound of crackling log fire that they make when burning, so this spicy number is a great way to create a cosy, wintry mood in your home. With three exotic scents in the mix, Cinnamon Chai, Ground Cinnamon and Spiced Rum, this candle will transport you to exotic climates for as long as it burns – hopefully all winter.

Heart & Home Votive Candle Pink Blossom
Your favourite flowers may not be in bloom this season, but that doesn’t mean you should be without the smell of beautiful bouquets in your home. This pink blossom candle layers dahlia and cherry blossom with deep but subtle hints of molten amber, and burns for a full 15 hours. It also looks very pretty, which makes it a great addition to any room.

Shearer Candles Triple Wick Neroli Jar Candle
If minimalism is your style, the Shearer Neroli candle will make a great addition to your home. Not only does it emit a sweet, relaxing citrus scent, but it comes in a beautifully minimalistic Molton silver glass. It looks good, it smells good, and it will definitely help you to de-stress after a long day.

Village Candle Coffee Bean Jar
Is there any smell that’s quite so universally loved as freshly brewed coffee? Well, now you don’t have to walk to your local coffee-shop to get your morning hit. Light this Village Coffee Bean Jar, sit back and breathe in the empowering aromas from your own home.
With its mix of roasted espresso beans, nutty pecans and the vanilla undertone of rich Tonka beans, this sweet candle is sure to impress anyone who’s lucky enough to catch a whiff.

Llewelyn Bowen Dusk Candle
This candle is a fantastic room decoration – its gorgeous violet tones and elegant patterns come from top designer Lawrence Llewelyn-Bowen, evoking luxury and glamour. With its captivating scent mix of light, subtle spices, underlaid with a deep base of Cedarwood, Amber and Musk, this scented sensation transforms any room into a relaxing and sensual haven.
What’s even better about this candle is that it’s the perfect gift for a loved one, even the box is decadently designed. If you’re all about the me-time, don’t worry! Nobody can blame you for wanting to spoil yourself with this luxurious treat after a hard day.

If you’re looking for more ways to relax, why not take a look at our guide on how to do a perfect DIY facial at home? For even more pampering tips, take a look at our Girl’s Night In Pampering Kit.

Beauty Advent Calendars

Beauty Advent Calendars


While the highlight of December used to be waking up to a sweet treat every morning, now we’re more interested in all the beauty treats on offer from our Advent Calendars. With lots of top beauty brands offering Advent Calendars this year with cute little skincare or makeup treats, you can get your beauty fix daily in the run up to Christmas! Now you just need to decide which one to go for…

1. Baylis & Harding Signature Assorted Advent Calendar £9.95
At a bargain £9.95 you can’t go wrong with this calendar on offer from the gorgeous bath and body brand Baylis & Harding. With a range of bath fizzers, soaps, shower cremes and lotions hidden behind each door it will definitely impress. This Advent Calendar is limited edition so make sure you snap it up before it’s gone!

2. Q-KI New Your Cosmetics Advent Calendar £9.99
This gorgeous Cosmetics Advent Calendar has 24 windows of makeup goodies. Containing a mixture of deluxe samples as well as full sized products you can expect to find a range of eyeshadows, blushers, mascaras and lip products.

3. Style & Grace Home Countdown Calendar with Candles £7.99
If you love candles as much as us, then this is the Advent Calendar for you! Each day you can reveal a new candle to fragrance your home through the Christmas period. At £7.99 for the whole calendar you can be sure to keep your home nice and cosy at a bargain!

4. Technic Spa Advent Calendar £11.99
Technic have a few different Advent Calendars on offer with a range of products including makeup, toiletries and this one – which is spa products! The Spa calendar is definitely our favourite, with it including a gorgeous luxury range of skincare and bath and body products to keep you feeling stress free throughout the festive period.

5. Decleor Advent Calendar £70.95
The Decleor Advent Calendar is the slightly pricier option on our list but it’s not difficult to see why… With a huge range of products including deluxe samples and full-sized products you’re definitely getting your money’s worth! Be quick though as this gorgeous calendar sold out super quickly last year!

6. Nuxe Beauty Countdown £48.95
Unveil all of Nuxe’s beauty treasures with this gorgeous Advent Calendar. Countdown with 24 days of Nuxe treats including bestselling products Huile prodigieuse, Reve de Miel range and the gorgeous Rose Petal toning lotion. The perfect way to test out all the gorgeous products from this French brand!

7. Technic Christmas Bauble Wreath Advent Calendar £12.00
You can guarantee you’ll always look your best throughout the festive season with this gorgeous Technic Bauble Wreath Calendar. At a bargain £12.00 you’ll reveal a range of makeup products every day through December including lipsticks, eyeshadows, nail varnishes and a range of beauty tools!

8. Style & Grace Bubble Boutique Advent Calendar £9.95
This gorgeous, colourful Advent Calendar from Style & Grace is perfect for people who love to relax and pamper themselves. Especially through the cold winter months you can find a selection of different treats to sit back and relax in a long bath with. The calendar contains a range of bath salts, soaps and fizzes.


How to Do a Professional DIY Facial at Home

How to Do a Professional DIY Facial at Home


Facials can work miracles for your skin; they’re cleansing, relaxing and even anti-ageing. A day at the spa for a professional treatment can be a lovely treat, but it can be quite pricey. Luckily, you can get all the benefits of a professional facial with a home DIY facial, for a fraction of the price tag.

From the correct way to cleanse, to how to properly hydrate your skin, we’ve put together a step-by-step guide on how to do a DIY facial. Follow our home facial tips to enrich your skin and save your bank balance.

1) Cleanse Your Face
First, take the time to properly clean your face with a good cleanser. Wash it with lukewarm water and a cream cleanser, such as Elemis Dynamic Resurfacing Facial Wash. Lukewarm water helps lift the dirt out of your skin, but try to avoid water that’s too hot as it can be drying.

If you wear a lot of makeup, you might want to use a gel cleanser such as Derma V10 Micellar Cleansing Gel Wash instead to ensure your skin is clean and clear.

2) Exfoliate
Next, use a good exfoliating scrub to really treat your skin. Exfoliating is when you remove dead cells from the top layer of your skin, leaving it looking healthy and bright, and helping your other skin care products penetrate deeper into your skin.

Apply a product such as St. Ives Blemish Fighting Apricot Scrub to your face, and gently move a washcloth in small, gentle, circular strokes around your face. Then, rinse your face with lukewarm water.

3) Steam

If you suffer from acne or regular blemishes, steaming your face is an amazing way to cleanse facial pores and eliminate dirt and debris. It will also help your skin absorb the products you’ll be using again later.

Boil two cups of water and once boiled, pour the water into a heatproof basin placed on a heatproof surface. Avoid plastic materials because toxic chemicals might be released by the boiling water.

If you feel like pushing the boat out then add a few drops of an oil of your choice from the Kneipp Herbal Bath Oil Collection. Just make sure you don’t add anything whilst the water is boiling or else the aroma will disappear.

After all that preparation, it’s time to steam your face. Once the water has cooled slightly, place a towel over your head and lean over the water. Make sure that the towel is big enough to trap the steam and don’t get too close or else you might burn yourself. We recommend you steam for at least 5 minutes to get the benefits, but no longer than 20 in case there are any issues you might be exacerbating.

4) Time for a Face Mask

Now it’s time for that all-important face mask. Face masks are great for hydrating your skin, getting rid of oils and improving the appearance of pores. What’s more, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to masks to try at home.

If you’re looking for cheap and cheerful, try the Metallic Easy-Peel Coconut Face Mask or the Anatomicals Hawaii Glow Tropical Hydrating Face Mask. For a little more luxury, invest in Estée Lauder Nutritious Radiant 2 StepTreatment or for even smaller pores, try a charcoal face mask.

Alternatively, there are a number of recipes online on how to make your own face mask. Just try to avoid eating the bananas, honey or avocados in the process!

5) Tone

Next, it’s time to tone in order to restore your skin’s natural pH levels. The Revlon 24 Hours Gentle Toner or Kaeso Beauty Calming Toner Mulberry & Pomegranate contain a variety of ingredients that’ll help to tone and soften your skin. This is an important part of the process to ensure you have a salon quality treatment, so try not to skip it!

6) Moisturise & Hydrate

You’re almost finished! Now all that’s left is for you to moisturise and hydrate to leave you feeling as fresh as a daisy. The Derma V10 Q10 Innovations Day Cream is formulated to protect the skin against the damaging effects of everyday life. For a tropical twist why not try the Inecto Naturals Coconut Moisture Cream? The organic coconut oil will rehydrate your skin, lock in moisture and leave you smelling good enough to eat.

After all the above steps, rehydrating your skin with moisturiser is an incredibly important step, as you will have opened the pores and left it a little more vulnerable than usual.

Follow all these steps and you can be guaranteed glowing skin, worthy of the salon! For further skin care advice and information on all things beauty, check out our blog.

What To Expect: When You Get A Spray Tan

What To Expect: When You Get A Spray Tan


Many of us don’t venture to the salon for a spray tan until a big occasion is looming. But what if it goes wrong just when you need to look your best? That’s one of the worries around salon spray tans, and there certainly are some things to bear in mind to get the best results. Not all the work is down to the beautician. In fact, you’ll need to do some prep yourself to get ready for action. But with a few top spray tan tips you’ll be well on your way to looking glowingly gorgeous. Here’s how:

Pre-tan hair removal

Always be sure to shave or wax at least 24 hours before your tan. If you can do it 48 hours before, even better. This will give you pores time to close fully. If they don’t you can end up with dark spots in your pores, which won’t feel especially glam.

Follow best practices for shaving and waxing too, including shaving in the direction of the hair growth, and using a soothing, moisturising shaving cream or gel. Or if waxing, apply a good post-wax treatment like Strictly Professional’s After Wax Lotion with Tea Tree.

Why you should exfoliate

Exfoliating will remove dead skin, giving you a more even tan. Expert advice is always to pay more attention to drier areas, like your knees and elbows, where the mixture can clog and look darker.

Again, to give your skin time to recover, exfoliate the night before your spray time, rather than on the day. Choosing a luxe exfoliator like Soothing Showers’ Booster Body Scrub.

When you get there

First thing to note for first-timers – you will have to completely undress. For shy types, that can feel a little uncomfortable, but rest assured, it’s normal practice. Plus, your beautician will be firmly concentrating on creating a gorgeous, even tan, not critiquing your physique.

You’ll be given paper thongs to use during the treatment, giving you a degree of modesty. But the most important thing is that the beautician can get to all of your body, to give you an all-over glow.

What happens in the pod?

Most beauticians will work their way down your body with the spray, and they’ll instruct you on how to stand, and what to do. So, despite potentially feeling a little awkward and exposed, you won’t have to worry too much about what you’re doing.

They’ll direct you on things such as lifting an arm up, or turning your back to them for instance, so they can work around your body. Before they get started, they should also ask you how dark you want to go. The darker the look, the more layers they’ll apply.

Aftercare

It’s best not to make big plans for the afternoon after your tan. You’ll be advised to leave it on without washing – and that includes washing your hands! – for around 6-8 hours. If you can leave it on overnight, even better.

You’ll notice that typical biscuit smell before washing it off, and the general advice is to wear dark, loose-fitting clothing and flipflops if possible. This allows your tan to activate without being rubbed off.

To keep your tan looking gorgeous for as long as possible, remember to exfoliate regularly and moisturise daily. A summery lotion like Derma V10’s Body Butter in Almond is just the thing to boost your hydration levels and give you a feel-good vibe.

Autumn Nail Colours

Autumn Nail Colours


For months we’ve been getting excited about this autumn’s nail colours. The AW18 Fashion Week catwalks were awash with exciting new nail trends and spins on some of our favourite classics. Although some were a bit more “out there” there are some gorgeous tones to for us mere mortals to wear day-to-day, along with great party nails to try out just in time for the festive season. So, to find out what we’ll be wearing in the FD offices this autumn, read on!

Natural nudes

Nude nails are one of our all-time favourites. Done right, they look sophisticated and give your nails a slick, well-nourished sheen. They can also be teamed up with almost any look and won’t look out of place around the office or on a night out.

To amp this colour up, make sure your nails are well manicured before applying. And protect them with a good base, like Sally Hansen’ Double Duty Base & Top Coat. When it comes to applying a colour, we love the glossy appeal of L’Oreal’s Color Riche Nail Polish 101.

Mystic earthy tones

Dark, earthy tones were another feature on the catwalks this season. Easier to wear than the more gothic black and deep metallics, this is one trend worth checking out. Sophisticated and vampish, it’s simple to pull off and pair with different looks.

Our favourites include Essie’s Nail Polish colour Partner in Crime, and Rimmel’s Super Gel Nail Polish in Hottie Choccie. Remember, the same rules apply for that classy finish, always use a base and top coat, and manicure those nails pre-application.

Deep reds

Bright reds are still in this season, and we can’t deny our love for a classic red nail. But, we’re also donning our burgundy and chocolatey red tones. These colours are chic and mysterious, but they still give you that power-dressing vibe a bright red would.

Maybelline’s Color Show Nail Polish in Burgundy Kiss is just one colour we’re stocking up on. Along with Naj Oleari’s Colour Emotion Classic Effect Nail Polish in Rosso Nero.

Magic metallic

There’s something ultra-glam about a metallic nail. Perfect for nights out and special occasions, a few coats of your favourite metallic shade will add a glitzy finishing touch to anything you throw together.

Metallic nails earlier this year were pale and chic. For autumn, select a colour that’s darker and fit for the cosy, cold months. Bourjois’s 1 Seconde Gel Nail Polish in Kakidylilic is just one to check out, as well as OPI’s Nail Lacquer in Pineapples Have Peelings.

Nail art

Dressing up your nails has never been more fun. Every year more inventive products come on the market, and it can be a great way to elongate the wear of your current nail colour, or simply add a bit of pizzazz to a nude or a darker shade.

If you have a steady hand and love to create something unique, try your hand with Maybelline’s Color Show Nail Art Pen. Or, for an easier route, try something like L’Oreal’s Le Jewel Shaker to jazz up your nails.