Sunday, 23 August 2015

Shoes of My Summer | Clarks Sharna Balcony Sandal*

Throughout Summer, I do not know of one person who does not wear sandals whether that be flat, strappy, heeled or with a peep toe. Sandals are really versatile and a staple in my collection, so when I was contacted by a lovely chap on behalf of shoe retailer Brantano who asked if I would like to take my pick from a huge selection of foot ware, I jumped at the chance.

Stocking various brands from Nike & Adidas to Clarks & Carvelle, I opted for a simple, classic sandal from Clarks.

The Sharna Balcony Sandal* is a super comfy, low heeled shoe with a patent block heel and matching suede toe and ankle straps. I went for these as I wanted something which would be suitable for work but wouldn't look out of place if I wanted to wear them for drinks in the evening.

I have been really impressed with these shoes and have worn them non stop since they arrived on my door step. They are really comfortable with a cushioned sole which is to be expected from Clarks and they have worn well, moulding to the natural shape of my step .They even saw me through an afternoon of walking through London for drinks and to see Bugsy Malone in The Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith. 

The heel height is perfect, not too high but not too low either. For my evening in London, I paired them with a fabulous flared sleeve playsuit from ASOS which is now only £15.00 in the sale along with a beautiful filigree crown which is also from ASOS & is one of my most favourite things I think I have ever bought. Inner Grecian goddess vibes let loose.

*items marked with an asterisk have been gifted. whilst I have not spent my own money on the item, all opinions are my own and are true, accurate descriptions of my experience with said item. i have not been paid to publish this post.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Pretty Nails for Lazy Girls

Hello love bugs! I hope you are well.

Todays post is brought to you with a loathing of chipping nails, polish that flicks off within an hour of applying it and topcoat that says it makes a mani last, but just makes it peel off - Seche Vite I'm looking at you honey.

I love nail varnish and probably have every colour known to man. I love how it looks when it's freshly painted and how it looks all swish and glossy. I just feel a little more 'put together' with painted nails. But is it just me, that within a day or two, they are chipping or I find myself bored within five minutes of them drying and smudge them?!

Because of the above, I have stuck with bare nails for several months now. I just cant be bothered with the effort when in a few days they will look mank again. I am hands up a lazy girl when it comes to nails and needed this to change!

Queue my little mate CatKin who introduced me to at home gel nails. She painted my nails with gel polish and cured them under a LED lamp which meant I had chip free, glossy nails for ten whole days before there was even 1 hint of them being needing to be redone. So with thanks to Cat, I purchased my own at home kit and I am yet to look back!

I bought a kit from Amazon for £46.99 which I thought was pretty reasonable seeing as a full set of gels done in a salon would cost around £30.00. I opted for the Bluesky Kit with Mylee Curing Lamp which I believed to be LED but turned out to be UV. It still works great but LED is better as it is quicker, doesn't emit harmful rays and also the bulbs in a UV lamp need changing every now and then whereas you don't with LED. This is totally my mistake and I clearly didn't read the description very well but it does the job all the same!

With the kit you get the following:-

Curing Lamp
Bluesky Base & Top Coat
Bluesky colour gel of your choice (I went for Rubble - a pretty grey/beige)
Gellux Prep & Wipe to sanitise the nails and remove any residue from the final coat
Gellux Remover
200 Lint Free Pads

It is really easy to use and there are straight forward instructions in the box which enable a failsafe application of the gel for pretty, shiny and long lasting nails. My first ever attempt took just under an hour which included fiddling around with all the bits inside the box and getting familiar with what does what. So yes, it does take a small amount of time but if you are lazy like me and can't be bothered to venture out to a salon, no longer want to pay salon prices and think you could do a good enough job at home whilst you are in pyjamas, bra whipped off, make up removed and hair scraped back then I would highly recommend investing in a at home kit. Bare in mind that I bought UV which takes double the time of a LED lamp. With an LED lamp you could have a fresh set in roughly 30mins I would imagine!

Bluesky colours are super easy to get hold of, you can purchase them through Amazon or eBay at  around £5 each which I think is pretty standard for bottles of nail varnish, and for those who love an accent nail or something a little more interesting, they have an excellent range of colour change and super pretty glitters too.  You can of course buy different gel colours from various brands but ensure they cure with the lamp you have purchased as not all gels work with both lamps.

When you apply the final top coat, you will find that there is a sticky residue left on the nail. Do not worry - this isn't a fault in the gel and you haven't applied it wrong or cured it ineffectively, the gel stays sticky so it can bond with the next layer properly. A final wipe with the Prep & Wipe solution will take this off and leave you with the final result.

I am so happy with how they last; I type everyday and wash up every night, use cleaning products and use my talons as tools & still have pretty nails. Yes it might take a little time, but I would so much rather apply gel once every 10 days than paint them every other!!

Have you got a at home gel kit or are you thinking of getting one? What do you think? Are there any brands of gel you love?

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Clothes & Me | A Journey Through My Wardrobe

For me, clothes and how I adorn my body is a big part of how I express myself, how I want to be portrayed, to be seen and most of all, how to make me feel comfortable and most like 'me'.
I have tried many styles, eras, genres, all lasting for about a year tops until I experimented with something else, waiting for the right 'look' for me to fit into place and embrace forever more. Probably my favourite phase was when I was in sixth form. Imagine lego hair, bandannas, floral dresses, plimsolls with ribbons for laces, cropped pastel cardigans and pink lipstick. Mixed patterns and contrasting prints were the norm. Pretty much what ever I felt like I wanted to wear, regardless of whether it went or not was what I went for that day. I probably looked like a charity shop vomited all over me. But I was happy and I felt great. I dressed for me.

Although this was my longest phase, it soon died after a year or two. I started to lose my quirks, my mismatched wardrobe and lego hair. Soon I dressed like everyone else and became just another one of the force fed fashion consumers. I looked like a TopShop mannequin. I had a side swept fringe and whilst I loved it and thought it was the height of individualism, put in a police line up of 'What Indie Girl Has the Best MySpace Hand', I could have been as guilty as the next. We. All. Looked. The. Same!

I got myself a retail job and kind of regained a little individuality, but again, I only worked there for a year and left for the worst admin job of my life. My beloved nose piercing got the boot in hope of my new manager liking me. She didn't. I got my nails professionally done like her to gain her respect. She didn't. I wore boring clothes and lost everything about who I once was. JACK POT! I left after 6 months of utter misery.

When I chatted to James' Mum about how I felt about clothes, she even agreed that I 'lost' who I was. And that makes me sad.  Not only did I feel completely alien in my own skin, but I looked like it too. From knowing me at a time where I was an eclectic, happy mess to being a boring, conformed disaster, it must have been crystal clear that I just wasn't Rheya,

Still, even after leaving the office job from hell, I dressed to please others. To fit in and to conform. Whilst I still liked what I wore, I didn't love it. I wasn't myself. I was dressing as someone else. I started blogging which really helped me come out of my shell again. I have included a few images above since the inception of  PixiRella for  you to see how varied my style has been throughout the past year or two. To get a better idea, grab a cup of tea and a paper bag ready for all the cringe you are about to vomit and take a peek through my MySpace. I apologise in advance for all the awkward teen photos! I digress - since blogging I started to experiment with Dr Martens and started really getting back into 'Vintage', something which I loved when I was an Art and Textiles student. 

I found shopping in charity shops was more my thing than the glossy high street and then James took up a hobby which was to really influence my appearance - Scooters! Lambrettas, Vespas, Ska, Northern Soul. It just awoken all the love and passion for dressing for me and what catches my eye. For feeling confident and great in clothes again. I saw these beautiful girls, dressed in white tights with flicks tickling the edges of their brows, with beehives and with bowling bags. Girls in pinafore dresses, matching 2 piece skirt suits with pussy bow shirts. With blunt hair and in little heels. I wanted to be a part of this.

The further we got into the Scooter scene, the deeper in love I fell. Since going to various events and experiencing a wide array of fashion and the 'lifestyle' that comes with such style, I have never felt more myself. I proudly backcomb my hair into a beehive for work. Wear a thick sheepskin coat and brightly patterned dresses for the weekly shop. I embrace the double chin in turtle neck tops and my 'Michael Jackson' white boots which aren't to everyone's taste. But it's mine.

So really, what I am getting at here is super simple. Just be true to you. If one day you want to dress like a goth and the next you want to be a majestic unicorn, head to toe in pink and glitter, that's cool.
If you want to wear trackies or if you want to wear a beehive and a suede skirt, that's cool too!

The worst thing I ever, ever, ever did was thinking that by changing how I looked would gain the approval of someone else even if it would come at a cost of losing part of who I was/am. Take for instance when I removed my nose piercing - they hired me with it. They knew I had it. I didn't need to take it out. This goes for anything and anyone. If people don't accept you as you are when you first meet, then they aren't someone you need around you. Family should always love you regardless, Friends should be the same, encouraging you to be even weirder and wonderful-er than you ever was before.

I know this sounds pretty cringe and super preachy - but I really felt this needed to be covered. So many girls these days dress like one another - and if that is really the look you want, there is nothing wrong with that. But if you are suppressing what you truly want in fear of others, you are ultimately only hurting yourself. The sooner you are brave and wear that leopard print leotard and neon pink leggings to town, the quicker you can get rid of that anxious squidgy feeling in your tummy from worrying about what people will think. The more you do it, the less you will care and soon the squidgy turns will become bursts of confidence and pride in yourself. Sure you might get stared down by a girl or two. But who are they to you? No one. Will you see them again? Maybe - but maybe not. She is no doubt a narrow minded individual who is like the person who I once was. Boring!

I hope this rings true with some of you and that you can relate - and if you do, I hope that you are now in a happier place and enjoy being your favourite version of you!