OCTOBER FAVOURITES

This month has absolutely flown by, but I can absolutely say that October has been the best month of the year to date and I've been loving and discovering a lot of new things, much to my surprise. It's always nice when a favourites post actually feels like it's going to be bulky and a good read instead of just 3 products pulled together out of thin air.

First up is something I'm going to be speaking about a lot more in depth in my Reflection post, but I just felt like I had to mention it. When this post goes up, it will be the last day of Blogtober and this is my 31st post published this month. It has honestly made me fall in love with blogging more than ever before, which is not what I was expecting! I thought I would feel really run down and like I needed a break at the end of this, but the complete opposite has happened and I'm planning a lot more content in November, and I'll of course be tackling Blogmas. I've loved creating all this content and I've loved the sudden creative spur I seem to be having. I'm really excited for November's content; I have a lot of hard work ahead of me but I'm more than ready for it and seem to be managing my time pretty well at the minute (touch wood).

My skin has been ridiculously up and down this month, some days I've been so happy with it and other days I've not wanted to leave the house because it's so awful. A pretty standard month to be honest. I've fallen out of a skincare routine a little bit and I find that I'm too exhausted when I get home to do anything fancy, so I've re-integrated some facial scrubs into my routine - I like them as a quick way of exfoliating. I use the Botanics All Bright Purifying Face Scrub every night when I shower, and then once or twice a week I use their Radiant Youth Microdermabrasion Polish. I spoke about microdermabrasion in THIS post, I just find using the polish a lot quicker than using the little brush, and my priority right now is getting enough sleep. Both of these clear up my complexion completely and I love how they make my skin look when I get out the shower; they're definitely helping to clear up my spots.

I've become massively obsessed with hand cream this month, and I'm not really sure why. I want to start taking better care of my hands because I like wearing pretty rings, and they don't look so good on ugly hands. I keep a little hand sanitiser and hand cream on my desk, one in my bag for on the go and 2 on my bedside table so I can pick which scent I'd prefer. My favourite is definitely Zoella's Hungry Hands from her collection last year; I'm completely obsessed with this scent, gingerbread, and I honestly apply it about 40 times a day. I also like to use The Body Shop's rose scented hand cream if Hungry Hands becomes too sickly - I need to pick up some festive Body Shop hand creams, the spiced apple scent used to be my go-to and I've read amazing things about their vanilla pumpkin range.

I reviewed The Ordinary's foundations in a post of their own, but I've been wearing them almost every day so I had to include them. I can't even pick a favourite, because they both work so well for my skin depending on what kind of look I want to go for. I'm so happy that I've actually found a nice bunch of foundations that work really well, because for so long everything I put on my face would just slip right off again. For the price of these, the quality is absolutely amazing, but that's the same with pretty much all of The Ordinary's skincare products as well. Just waiting on my skin to clear up a little before I can start reaching for the Serum over the Coverage...

I have become completely and utterly obsessed with fluffy jumpers. I'm wearing one as I'm typing this. Since seeing one in an older Zoella vlog, I've been on the hunt and somehow ended up with 3, all £17.99 from H&M. I have white, black and burgundy, and I always reach for the white one first. They're just so ridiculously cosy and soft, which is what you need at this time of year, and I'm definitely getting my moneys worth. I love styling them with jeans or trousers or anything really, they're gorgeous and I cannot stop buying them. Primark also do fluffy jumpers in more of a variety of colours, but I'm not a huge fan of their v-neck style. Thanks for being the best jumper provider, H&M.

What have you been loving in October?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

OCTOBER POSTS YOU NEED TO READ

There are SO many posts that I've been loving this month, it seems as though everyday I was finding another one and noting it down to put in to this list. There are a few that have been featured in these posts before, but I'm not going to make a conscious effort to not include them because if you love a post, you love a post. I think my favourite content creators might become apparent through these posts but I'm also discovering a lot of new favourites and bloggers I might not have read before, so I love collating these posts.
I can't remember if I've ever featured Robyn in one of these posts before, I think I must have because I love how original her content is and she's just a really cool person. I've been enjoying keeping up with her Burton Babes series so much, it's such an original idea and she's absolute killed it. She's done the Corpse Bride (one of my favourite movies), Edward Scissorhands and Coraline. Coraline is definitely my favourite of these looks, probably because Robyn looks eerily like her. Another of Robyn's posts that I've been obsessed with is the one about her favourite murders. I'm fascinated by serial killers so this was one of the best posts I've read all month, and if she doesn't turn it into a series she will be getting a handwritten letter of complaint from me.
I've not actually read many of Anne's posts, but one of them popped up on my Twitter a few weeks ago and I was instantly intrigued. She writes about her irrational fears, which I've since discovered is something I'm extremely interested in. I don't wanna know about why you're scared of spiders, I wanna know why you're scared of grass, like Anne is. I was laughing a lot throughout reading this post, and I just feel like everyone should write a post like this just to curb my curiousity and give me a giggle.
I absolutely LOVE Beth, she's one of the nicest people I've ever spoken to and I love seeing her name come up in my mentions or my comments. The post I've been completely obsessed with is her showcasing some Stella & Dot jewellery, and the reason I'm so obsessed with it is because of her photography. I mean....Wow. It's honestly breathtaking, her editing and the slightly fuzzy quality of the photos make the entire thing feel so cosy, if that makes sense. I keep going back to it just to admire the photos, I cannot get enough of them. All the pieces included are beautiful and that chunky jumper is now on my wishlist.
Oh look, it's one of my absolute favourite bloggers, Lauren, again. Lauren has been smashing Blogtober this year, and I feel like her post ideas always put me to shame because she creates some of the most amazing content. My favourite post of hers this month is about her impulsive tattoo and why she doesn't regret it. As someone with 4 tattoos, all moderately impulsive, this post really resonates with me. She talks about why she thinks it's totally fine to not have a really deep meaning behind your tattoos, because the tattoo itself is a meaningful act. None of my tattoos have really deep, personal meanings behind them, so to hear someone else put what I've been thinking into words made for such an incredible read.
The final post I've been loving this month is one by my soul sister and one of my best friends, Katie. I remember her talking about a post about the unspoken issues with blogging, and when she published it I was so excited to hop over and give it a read. I don't want to give anything away here because I want everyone to go over and read it themselves, but I think it's going to open up a conversation about some of the worse issues within the blogging community, and hopefully put an end to some of the more awful goings-on.

What posts have you been loving this month?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

DEBENHAMS CHRISTMAS 2017

Debenhams have made start on launching some of their new Christmas ranges, and I was fortunate enough to be invited to go along and have a nosy at some of the new releases and meet Hammond & Co designer, Patrick Grant, at Blythswood Square Hotel. It has become one of those memories that you feel drunk when looking back on it, because it's quite surreal. I felt drunk with excitement the entire time I was there, and I only had one glass of prosecco the whole night so I was absolutely fine. I feel so lucky to have been given the opportunity to go, it feels as if I dreamed it.

Hammond & Co by Patrick Grant consists of beautifully stylish casual wear and formal clothing, most of which I dream of dressing my boyfriend, Max, in. The range of boots and jumpers are perfect for the A/W season that is fast approaching, and a printed bow tie adds a smart edge. Patrick himself is an extremely well dressed gentleman and his range reflects his own personal style and personality. I know where I'm buying Max's presents from this year. Can I get him in a bow tie? Unlikely, but I'll give it my best shot. I will admit I was a little starstruck at first and it took me all night to work up the courage to actually go and introduce myself to him, but he's a charming guy and a pleasure to chat to so really, I worried for absolutely nothing.

As well as Patrick's range, we were treated to an inside look into some other brands new releases for this season. The womenswear and shoes were something else entirely; the seasonal trend of glitter, sequins and sparkles is coming back in a big way. I think I took about 40 photos just of the ombre stilettos and I kept gravitating back to the sequined boots. I always go for boots over anything else, and what better way to adjust your style to fit the season than a million sequins? All of the items of clothing were ridiculously beautiful - think fur, sequins and silk. I don't have an occasion to wear any of the items, but to be honest I'd probably buy them just to sit at home and do nothing.

There were loads of gifts scattered around the room, intertwined with pinecones, baubles and leaves. It made for a LOT of beautiful photographs. I love Debenhams for their gift range at Christmastime, you just know you're going to leave with something perfect, whether it's a Nutella Pancake Mix box or a Benefit makeup set. I personally loved the white beanie pictured in this gorgeous Jasper Conran pyjama set. I used to wear Jasper Conran pyjamas a LOT, and he has definitely upped his game since I was 12. I can just imagine myself in these on a lazy morning, I'd probably get too hot if I slept in them but I really just feel like I need them to look pretty whilst being lazy.

The decor of the event was absolutely stunning, especially the mirror area which was basically like Christmas threw up everywhere. A sea of baubles and leaves topped with a fairy light-filled star is exactly what you need to get into the festive mood. I just kept circling round the room snapping photos of absolutely everything, which made sorting through them a nightmare because we all know the struggle of having 6 photos that look exactly the same and having to pick one to include in the post. I joked about setting up my Christmas tree when I got home, but I'm starting to think it might actually happen. I'm telling you, come November 1st I will be all decked out in full Christmas gear and you'll all have Debenhams and their festive wonder to blame.

Are you excited for Christmas yet?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

HALLOWEEN THROUGH THE YEARS

I've been so excited about this post for the entirety of October, when I thought of the idea I branded myself a genius and that is how I will remain for the rest of my life. Basically, I've gone through loads of old photo albums and compiled a selection of my favourite Halloweeny/Autumnal photographs of myself. I love looking through baby photos, inluding everyone elses, so I thought this would be an amazing idea for Halloween and Christmas. It's fun to be nosy and see how cute everyone was as a baby sometimes!


I kind of struggled to find a lot of baby Halloween photos - I assume my parents didn't dress me up until I was old enough to decide what I wanted to be on my own. I absolutely will not be a parent like that, my child will be a pumpkin from year 1 and something equally as cute every year. I've always had a thing for dressing up though, and I'm honestly not even sure that this first photo is actually from Halloween. I wore this Swan Lake dress to death, literally everyday for about 6 months, so there's a good chance that this photo of myself and my childhood best friend, Sophie, is actually from summer. I couldn't leave it out though, I was so extra with the full headband and floaty sleeve things. It's painful to look at now, all I'm thinking is "why did I do this?!"...

Next up is a more Autumnal than Halloween one, although that outfit is a bit too co-ordinated...These woods are behind my house and feature in a lot of photos, I go there for most of my shoots and it seems like it's been that way since I was a baby. I do always get jealous of people who have nice white houses they can use as their backgrounds because I find shooting in those woods gets a bit tiring and the backdrop just isn't what I want, but I take what I can get. It makes me laugh that red is my favourite colour now, and I think that's the only colour my mum dressed me in when I was younger. She said I really suited red as a baby, but does that really justify the full red ensemble, complete with red wellies?

These two Halloween ones go hand in hand, as they're from the same night. I vaguely remember it, I don't have a lot of memories of Halloween as I don't think it's something we've really celebrated a lot. Especially since me and my siblings are older now, we haven't done trick or treating in a long time. These photos make me really happy though, the group one is of myself, my mum and some friends and neighbours - we all went trick or treating in a group. The one of me and my mum makes me laugh - I'm stuffing a cupcake in my mouth and my mum has a pumpkin that I painted on her cheek. I'm not sure what she was supposed to be (maybe nothing) but I remember I was definitely a vampire, it was my favourite thing to dress up as. Note the eerily pale face and horrific eyebrows.

I had to go digging for this last photo, but it was absolutely so worth it because now I have it in my possession forever. I remember this Halloween so well, my mum and I both went as Daphne from Scooby Doo and I was annoyed because she got a red wig and she told me I was too young for one. I honestly wish I was doing something for Halloween this year so I could go as Daphne again - Scooby Doo was my favourite show when I was younger and I still have a lot of love for the movies, I watch them when I need some cheering up. The whole matching outfits thing was pretty tragic in itself but I'm still a tad salty about the fact that she upstaged me completely and had a much better outfit than me. White tights, Lauren? Really?

What's your favourite Halloween memory?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

AUTUMNAL ORANGES MAKEUP

I think I did a similar themed look last year around October-time, but it's a classic for Autumn so you can't just leave it out. I also did this look a LOT in summer but it was based more around peachy pink tones, and less orange tones, but I love when you can just go properly all out and make it look like your eyes are on fire. That's the kind of makeup that gets my heart going. All of my makeup looks are ridiculously quick and easy; the kind that you can do in about 10 minutes, but I still don't manage to do them for work because who can be bothered putting that much effort in?

I am obsessed with this look, I love the way I did it and I love how it all comes together so nicely. I used The Ordinary serum foundation as a base and the Seventeen Stay Time concealer to cover any blemishes. For my eyes, I primarily used the ABH Modern Renaissance palette for this but I had to slip in the classic Autumnal Morphe 35O, because it just screams out to be used at this time of year. The oranges in there are to die for. I put Burnt Orange all over my lid, and then a wee bit of Love Letter into the crease to give it a bit of a pinky hue. Then I used the bottom corner orange out of the Morphe palette and kinda just put that all over the lid and then continued to darken the crease with the pink until I was happy with it.

Then I lined my eyes with the Soap & Glory Supercat liner and put some mascara on, and used the same orange from the Morphe palette to do a bit of colour under my eyes and put some of the brown end of the Sports FX eyeliner into my waterline and I also used that on my brows, which is something I'm starting to do a lot more. I've ditched the powder for pencil, which is something I never thought I'd do. I contoured using the Rimmel contour palette shown and used the highlighter out of there as well, which is my current everyday favourite highlighter, which I've probably said before.

The lip I chose today is one I don't normally wear because I'm not a fan of the forumla, but it just fit so well with the whole look that I couldn't resist. That and I couldn't find any of my other nude lipsticks. I used the NYX Lip Lingerie in Push-Up, which is a really popular shade for good reason. It's completely beautiful and I really just wish I loved the formula as much as I love the Soft Mattes, but I just find these way too drying!

This is what I usually go for in terms of an everyday Autumnal look, it's probably the easiest to do and you don't need any sort of technique to do it at all. Just slap some vaguely Autumnal colours on your lid and off you go.

What's your favourite orange eye look?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

AUTUMNAL DATE NIGHT ON A BUDGET

I think I did a similar post for Valentines Day this year, but this one will be better because it's autumnal.

I'm a massive fan of being super cheesy and going on dates and planning dates with my other half; I hate how dating has seemingly become a thing of the past and all you do is go round to each others houses to watch Netflix. Like, no, where's the romantic date nights with dinner and a movie? I would like to feel dated please.

CINEMA & DINNER

So you may be thinking "I thought this was for date nights on a budget?!" and you are correct, the cinema is bloody expensive and I have to take out a loan any time I want to go. Why not just watch it illegally online? Well for one, the quality would be completely dire because they're all filmed in the cinema. And staying in your bedroom to watch a shit quality movie is not a cute date that you feel all warm and fuzzy afterwards - that's basically just doing what you do by yourself, but next to your partner. The cinema is expensive but there are ways to save money if you want to - sometimes you can get deals on cinema tickets and if you have an Odeon card (or your mum has one) you can sometimes use it for a free ticket if you have enough points. You can also take your own snacks for during the film, although it wont be as good as cinema popcorn, and if you're really strapped for cash, McDonalds is always an option for dinner.

COFFEE DATE

Every time I go to arrange something with another blogger or a friend I'm like "ooh, we should go for coffee!" forgetting that I actually don't drink coffee unless I'm at work. That said, a little Costa date is always really cute because you can just sit and talk and drink nice drinks. I tend to go for a no-phone rule unless I'm taking flatlays of our food/drinks so I can be fully in the moment and enjoy catching up with a friend or getting to know another blogger. Plus in Autumn it can get really cold so I think it's good to be inside and holding something hot, so your fingers don't fall off.

GO FOR A WALK

This is probably my favourite thing to do for a date night because it's also the perfect opportunity for outfit photos. My boyfriend thinks I'm dressing up for him, nu-uh, I'm dressing up for my blog. I just find it so calming and nice to walk in the woods or the park where the leaves are all golden and all over the ground, it's the best thing. I'm not really one for like hardcore walks so for me, there's no 'WOO YEAH LETS GO WALK 20 MILES ROUND THAT LAKE'. If you have a dog, also take your dog. Or just go with your dog. We all need a little self-date sometimes too. Just remember to wrap up warm cos being cold is probably the worst feeling in the world.

MOVIE MARATHON AT HOME

So remember when I said all people do is go round to each other's houses and watch Netflix and it's not a proper date? And now I'm telling you it's a good idea for date night? Yeah. If you've had a particularly busy or rubbish day I find that this is the perfect cure, and technically it is a date, albeit not the most romantic one. There's nothing that appeals to me more than getting a takeaway and snuggling up in bed to watch lots of TV and movies. Heck, you don't even need another person to do this, another self-date idea. It's perfect for that day where it's just too chilly to even think about going outside, or you've just come back from being outside and desperately need to warm up.

MAKE YOUR OTHER HALF PLAN IT

So I've given you a few ideas, but why should you plan all the date nights? I'm always the planner in my relationship because if I don't plan anything, nothing happens. And I refuse to let us never do anything because I love going for dates. But an idea for people in similar situations is to give them a time and a day and make them plan the activity, that way it sort of feels like you're half planning it each when really you're making them do all of it. It's nice to feel like the other person is putting effort into your date nights too, because most of the time I do not feel like this.

What do you like to do on date night?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

ANYTHING BUT ORDINARY SKINCARE

I know the title may sound like I'm telling you not to and buy The Ordinary skincare but it's supposed to be more like "it's anything but ordinary!" I may have dropped the ball with that one.

The Ordinary is a skincare brand that's been gaining a lot of momentum over the past few months, they have a very unique take on skincare and I think that entices a lot of people. The names of their products are the scientific names, but they do tell you in the descriptions on the websites what each product can actually be used for. Most people have said that they don't like the scientific names, and I can kinda see why because it involves more work to see what you actually use it for, but I love it. It helps me to realise what specific products work for my skin and what to avoid, without having to go and heavily research it all. I've been accumulating a small collection of The Ordinary products, each of which I've been using for long enough to give this incredible brand their own post.

So I have 7 The Ordinary products that I use regularly and completely love - I find myself always torn between keeping my skincare routine ridiculously simple and using products to help the condition of my skin get better. I usually opt for using all my luxurious products because I like to feel like I'm helping to improve the condition of my skin, because I don't drink a lot of water or eat particularly well, skincare is all I have. 2 of them, the foundations, have been reviewed in a post of their own which you can find HERE!

The first The Ordinary product I ever purchased was the 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil. What a mouthful. This has been a favourite of mine for a really long time, I preach about it to everyone and I have definitely included it in more than one favourites post I bet. I use this almost every night and I always wake up with visibly clearer skin, plus it just feels so nice to basically slather my face in oil and know it's actually doing it some good. I do have oily skin but this doesn't make it worse during the day or anything - I only put it on at nighttime and don't find it makes a difference to the condition of my makeup the next day, if anything it makes it better. Absolutely one of my holy grails.


In a post I did a few months ago about my box swap with Rosie, I mentioned that she got me 2 new The Ordinary products which, to be honest, kick-started my obsession and prompted me to buy even more stuff. She got me the Lactic Acid 5% + HA 2% and the AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution. If you have no idea what I just said, don't worry, I'll clear it up for you. The Lactic Acid is the best shit I've ever used, no kidding; Max was a bit worried when I said I was putting Lactic Acid on my face but it's really diluted so it's all good. Since using these, I've noticed a visible reduction in the amount of massive spots I get and when I don't use it, I do notice my skin getting worse. It does smell a little bit funky, but it's a small price to pay for significantly nicer skin. The AHA + BHA is a little scary because it looks a lot like blood, but it leaves my skin ridiculously soft so I love using it. I prefer it to facemasks because it only takes 10 minutes and there's a lot less mess, and I find the results a lot better.


After seeing how amazing the products Rosie got me were, I placed another little cheeky order on Beauty Bay and I got the Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA and the Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%. More confusing words and numbers that make no sense. I'm not entirely sure what effect the Alpha Arbutin is having on my skin because I've been using it alongside the other completely amazing products, but it claims to reduce dark spots and hyperpigmentation which is something I definitely needed and something I feel like is happening and I'd put it down to this. I really love the Vitamin C Suspension, it's ever so slightly exfoliating and the HA makes my skin feel so so soft, BUT I've had to stop using it because it's been fake tanning my hands. I couldn't figure out what was causing it until I smelled it and then googled, turns out the Vitamin C is reacting with my skin and making it fake tan and making it smell like fake tan. If it could just fake tan my face now, that would be lovely.

Have you ever tried any The Ordinary products?

CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com

THE AUTUMN TAG

 You can't do Autumn without an Autumn tag. I hunted high and low for one but could only find this little short one - which is better than nothing! I love Autumn, it's my favourite season AND my birthday season so I'm more than ready to share the love for it.

1. What signifies the start of Autumn for you?
- I think definitely when the leaves start to change. I don't care when Autumn technically starts, if the leaves are still green, it ain't Autumn. I also associate October with Autumn more than September, although I feel like September isn't a summer month either so I have no idea what I think of that month. Also when it gets darker in the evenings, which I love. I love feeling cosy and warm in my bedroom in some cute festive pyjamas.

2. What is your favourite Fall scent?
I got a candle from B&M last year which was a fresh, apple-y scent and it was the nicest thing I've ever smelled in my life. I also find cinnamon is a quite Autumnal scent even though it's technically a Christmas scent - anything more musky and less sweet is automatically Autumnal to me, no matter what festive decoration is on the label.

3. What is your favourite Autumn colour?
Definitely burgundy/berry. But I also love orange. And although orange is a bright colour, it matches the leaves on the ground so it is absolutely an Autumnal colour. Burgundy lipstick and clothing is predominantly associated with the Autumn months though, and I'm sure everyone has said that but I think it's the colour most widely associated with Autumn. I'm really digging yellow at the minute though, I want everything in my wardrobe to be yellow.

4. What is your favourite Fall drink?
I love when Costa starts to do the white hot chocolate because although it's super sweet, it's still amazing. I'm pretty sure they also do a gingerbread latte which comes with a little gingerbread man and it's also insane. Basically, just go to Costa. They'll sort you out with all your hot drink needs.

5. What TV show, new or old, are you looking forward to this Fall?
Strictly starting is an obvious one, I love when Strictly starts because that's pretty much when my countdown to Christmas starts. And that's when my family all get together to have a weekly Chinese and everything is all cosy and festive and lovely.

6. What is your favourite Fall fashion trend?
I still really love capes, I know they were a thing a few years ago but I still love them and prefer them to wearing jackets because it's basically like wearing a big blanket. I also love boots, but I wear them all year round so I don't usually consider them to be a Fall fashion trend.

7. What is your favourite frugal Autumn activity?
100% going for walks. I love just taking my camera out and getting some outfit photos or photographing the leaves. It's nice to just get a hot chocolate or whatever and just go and sit with someone and chat, mostly my boyfriend because it's a nice, cheap date idea (which I will be writing a post on so keep an eye out).

8. What is your favourite makeup look come autumnal weather? 
Gold and berry shades are the first things that comes to mind, but I also love doing orange-y eye looks or pinky/red shades too. I tend to go for more of a gold based highlighter in Autumn for some reason, like Becca's Champagne Pop - I think I definitely associate anything gold with Autumn. I'm going to be doing a makeup look or two on the blog this month so you'll see what I mean!

So there we go! I tag my Whatsapp girlies for this tag, but anyone can also feel free to do it as well. I'll leave the questions for you to copy and answer down below, which makes it so much easier because you won't have to go back and delete my answers. If you do the tag, leave the link below, cos I'd love to read it!

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CONTACT ME - loulabelleenquiries@outlook.com


1. What signifies the start of Autumn for you?
2. What is your favourite Fall scent?
3. What is your favourite Autumn colour?
4. What is your favourite Fall drink?
5. What TV show, new or old, are you looking forward to this Fall?
6. What is your favourite Fall fashion trend?
7. What is your favourite frugal Autumn activity?
8. What is your favourite makeup look come autumnal weather?

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