August Favourites

Good Things Fresh Start Creamy Cleanser
This cleanser from Good Things is making it's second favourites appearance this month.  It featured in my May Favourites, but since then I changed up my skincare.  Needless to say, I've come running back this!  My skin feels so smooth and nourished after use.  I can see this becoming a skin care staple!

No7 High Shine Lip Crayon in Delicate Pink
I picked this up on a whim using my Advantage Card points and have been wearing it almost every day since!  The formula is really lovely and glides on easily.  It's highly pigmented and this shade is perfect for an everyday look.  It's got great lasting power too.

Bumble and Bumble Thickening Hairspray
I know, I know!  Another mention in the blogosphere of this gem of a magazine freebie!  I couldn't resist including this wonder spray!  Although I have thick hair, it can become a little lifeless in the summer heat.  A quick spritz of the Thickening Hairspray onto damp roots is all that's needed for added volume.  I'll most certainly be purchasing this once I've run out!

What have your favourites been this month?

Festival Essentials

I'm writing this post from the depths of my festival blues.  Is anyone else wishing they were at Reading or Leeds this weekend?  Instead of being there, I'll be watching the BBC highlights - kitted out in my Hunters and flower crown of course!  If I was there, however, this is what I would have packed...

Wellies are a festival must.  It will rain at some point and there's nothing worse than having soggy feet.  I usually wear my original green Hunters, but these navy striped boots are a lovely alternative.

Denim shorts are a festival favourite of mine.  Layering is ideal for the unpredictable weather.  Make sure you've got tights, a pair of super cosy tights and even leggings.  These will keep your pins warm and take up minimal space in your luggage.  Topshop's acid wash offerings are my favourites.

And then we come to the Pac a Mac.  Not the most glamorous of outerwear but anything that's lightweight and waterproof is perfect festival attire.  This lace version from Warehouse isn't exactly the most practical, but it sure is pretty!  Have a peek in Primark for one too, I have a navy one with white horses on that is super cute!

Keep beauty products simple.  Dry shampoo, concealer and a cheap waterproof mascara should make up the bare bones of your make up bag.  If your foundation is packaged in a glass bottle, decant some into a small plastic tester pot.  If you're feeling fancy, add in some colourful fake lashes and neon facepaint.

It can be easy to worry about what to take to a festival.  But remember that you don't need to dress up.  Don't take clothes that you spent a lot of money on.  You probably won't even wear half of what you take anyway.  You'll be thankful that you only took the essentials when you carry everything home after your amazing weekend!

Visit to The National Trust's Cliveden

Last weekend, I ventured to Cliveden, both a National Trust property and working luxury hotel.  There have been three houses on the site, the first being built by the 2nd Earl of Buckingham for his mistress in the 1660s.  House fires have given way for alterations to the original design and the house that stands today was lived in by the glamorous Astor's until the 1960s.  

I was keen to explore the interior of the house, but guided tours are only available to National Trust members for a few hours a week.  The 25 minute tour does provide you with the key historical details of the house, however you are led round to different paintings which provide a visual narrative of Cliveden's past.  The highlight of the tour for me was seeing three original sketches of Nancy Astor by John Singer Sargent.  You can catch a glimpse of a full length oil portrait too, however up close and personal viewings are reserved for hotel guests only.

If you're after a National Trust house that you can look round at your own pace, Cliveden probably isn't for you.  However, the final part of the tour takes you to a room whose interior once called a French hunting lodge home.  The room is stunning and there are boars, deer and gold leaf aplenty. However, I would have like to have seen more than just paintings in corridors beforehand.

Where the house tour left me slightly disappointed, the gardens at Cliveden have far more to offer.  They contain a mix of woodland, country style borders and a more formal parterre.  The Long Garden was my favourite, and it was delightful to see so many bees, busy bumbling away over the echinacea and sea holly.

If you do decide to visit Cliveden, make sure that you pay the chapel a visit.  It's only tiny but is definitely the most impressive part of the estate!  It's perfect for a few moments calm to admire the beautiful stained glass windows and mosaics that cover the entire walls.

I may have had mixed views about my visit, but I'm certainly glad I went.  It's a National Trust property I can tick off my list.  If you enjoyed reading this post, why not take a peek at what I thought about my trip to Basildon Park?