When it was first revealed Illamasqua was bringing out a nude/neutral palette I know there were a few people who were a tad surprised. Illamasqua are famed for being a bit wild and wacky, and ultimately, aim to break the mould - so why opt for a nude palette when they're all about being different?

Well, I for one was super excited about the new addition to their impressive repertoire of beauty products, and I feel like it makes sense. Neutrals are huge and it would be stupid of a brand not to recognise that. Plus, I'm a big fan of Illamasqua as a brand but I'll always be a neutral girl, so this palette completely appealed to me. I think that's probably why they decided to go for this - while 90% of their collections are nothing short of extraordinary, it's nice that your average neutral junky has something to opt for when perusing their local Illamasqua.

But that's not to say this palette is the same as every other nude palette out there. The Illamasqua Nude Collection Unveiled Artistry Palette (£38) is a gorgeous mix of both matte and metallic neutral shades and, in true Illamasqua style, it veers away from 'traditional' neutrals and gives us something that packs a bit more of a punch. There is a rich fuschia, deep cherry, a delicious bronze and an array of more orange-toned matte shades. I personally think it's a brilliant palette for anyone who loves a neutral but wants to try something a little more 'fun'.

As with all Illamasqua shadows, these are super pigmented and blend beautifully. They're perfect for everyday wear but also look stunning smoked up for an evening look. Honestly, I think if you're debating buying this palette then go for it - you won't be disappointed.

I remember visiting Bristol and Bath with my parents as a kid, many moons ago, and absolutely loving both places with equal measure. So, when I was deciding where to go on a little weekend break to celebrate my birthday, I knew exactly where I wanted to visit.

We travelled down early on a Friday morning and spent Friday and Saturday in Bristol, Sunday in Bath. It was the ridiculously hot Bank Holiday weekend we had a few weeks back, so both places were scorching hot and gorgeously sunny. It meant it was a bit too hot at times, but I honestly felt like I was abroad wandering along Bristol's harbour and sunning myself in a cute garden in Bath, sipping rhubarb and custard cider.

We stayed at Clifton House, a beautiful hotel in pretty Clifton, with streets lined with stunning Georgian townhouses. Breakfast was included and our room was lovely - modern with a traditional touch, perfectly matched to the Victorian building. While it was a good 20-minute walk into Bristol city centre, Clifton was only 10 minutes away and I absolutely loved it there - definitely my favourite part of Bristol.

Clifton was bursting with cute shops, Instagrammable cafes and just an all-round lovely atmosphere. We stopped off for some lunch at East Village Cafe and it was amazing - delicious food and drink, amazing interior (and exterior!) and some incredible cakes (Tom had an almond and raspberry cake and it honestly looked to-die-for). We then had a wander around some of the shops in the arcade, including an awesome crystal shop, a shop full of weird and wonderful plants and my favourite - a homeware shop packed full of so many nice things. The lady in there made our day - we were telling her about how we've just bought a house together and she went and got us a house-warming present, it was the cutest thing. Everyone there seemed so friendly and welcoming, which was lovely.

While in Clifton we took a walk up to view the Clifton Suspension Bridge, a pretty impressive piece of architecture. There's an observatory there with a Camera Obscura and the Giant's Cave - a 130-step walk down to view the bridge and the Avon Valley from the natural cave that formed in the limestone face of St Vincent's Rock. We took the trip down and it was a really impressive view, although I'm not sure it was worth the 130-step walk!

We also went to Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, and I'd definitely recommend going if you like natural history or art. One of the exhibitions was all about endangered animals and honestly it struck such a chord with me I could've cried. They'd placed black sheets over the animals that were extinct or seriously under threat and it's probably the best way I've ever seen the threat of extinction illustrated so poignantly.

Obviously, as Bristol is pretty much the home of all things are you don't need to head to a museum to see it - there is street art on every corner - including lots of Banksys!

In Bath we of course had to pay a visit to the Roman Baths - it's a beautiful place steeped in so much history, but if you're not a big history buff you might find it a bit dull. I do think it's a must-visit if you're there though - just be aware it gets very busy, so get your pictures as soon as you go in! Bath itself is just a dream to wander around and a great place for shopping - one of my favourite shops has got to be Topping and Company Booksellers - an amazing bookshop full of first editions and signed copies.

When in Bristol and Bath we ate at some amazing places, some which are definitely worth making a note of are: Mrs Potts Chocolate House (a chocoholic's dream), The Bristol Stable (amazing pizza and cider), Pinkmans Bakery (they do sourdough doughnuts!) and Cafe au Lait in Bath - they do the most incredible pancakes.

We had such a lovely, chilled weekend taking in the sights and sounds of both cities and it was so nice to just wander around and take in the scenery. Bristol had such an incredible atmosphere and general vibe the whole time we were there - so laid back and chilled, and I loved how arty the place was. One of my highlights has got to be stumbling across a Banksy as we were walking towards the cathedral - the city is full of his work. Bath was truly beautiful and just a total pleasure to wander around - I wish we could've spent a bit more time there. Overall I had the best time and would totally recommend paying both places a visit if you can!

I can’t actually believe it’s September already. I feel as though summer has flown by in a flash, and while it’s been a great summer, full of some (far too) hot days and lovely memories, I’m so glad that September is here. Autumn is on the horizon, it’s ‘back to school’ season and it’s a time for fresh starts and new beginnings.

Despite never being the biggest fan of school, September is most definitely one of my favourite months. I love getting excited about autumn; the nostalgic feeling of picking your brand new pencil case and backpack for school and the anticipation of darker nights, weekends spent baking autumn treats and cuddling up with blankets and hot chocolate. I’m very much a homebody and I feel like September onwards is the time for hygge lovers and homebodies.

Speaking of home, it’s probably about time I updated you all on what I’ve been doing the past few months (I know it’s been a while since I last blogged - sorry!). But... me and my boyfriend bought a house! I feel like every blogger in the world is buying a house right now but it’s so exciting because we all get to share the adventure together. We’ve actually bought the place we’ve been renting for the past few years, but we’re so excited to make it properly ours - so expect lots of home and interior posts coming soon! 

It was my birthday last Tuesday and I’m officially in the last year of my twenties - eep! I have mixed feelings about it (which I’m planning on sharing in a blog post soon) but I had a lovely party on Bank Holiday Monday spent with family, had a day of pampering on my birthday and also spent the weekend before exploring Bristol and Bath (which I’ll also be posting about soon) to celebrate. Does anyone else have to make their birthday a week-long event or is it just me?! 

So, now you're all up-to-date, I thought I'd share a few goals and to-dos I want to achieve this month:

Finish Game of Thrones. Not the series, the books - I only have a couple of books left and I’d like to get them read before the month is out. I am completely obsessed with them and every minute of spare time I have right now is spent with my head in whichever GoT book I'm reading. I can't believe I haven't read them sooner!

Get back into baking. Bake Off is back and I feel like autumn is THE time to bake. I can’t actually remember the last time I baked anything, which is a travesty as it’s one of my favourite things to do. I will definitely be whipping up some treats this month, most probably starting with rhubarb crumble as we have so much rhubarb growing in the garden! Let me know if you’d like to see more recipe posts on here, I feel like it’s been years since I did any!

Add the finishing touches to my office. My new office/dressing room is pretty much done but I still have a few bits I want to add to it - mostly some prints, a few plants and I'm desperate for some gold bookends and other bits and pieces for my shelves. Dressing the room is definitely the best part!

Up my fitness game. I feel like I've been really slacking in the gym/just generally being active lately and I need to get back into it. I've bought some new gym clothes to help motivate me and I'm thinking of signing up for Race for Life again this year - it's always so much fun and such a great cause.

What are your goals for September? Is anyone else as excited for autumn as I am?!

Pastel chunky trainers - Public Desire via ASOS

This post is an advertised collaboration with Boots but all thoughts are my own.

Summer is finally here, and after several weeks of diabolical weather I couldn't be happier. It's set to be a scorcher this coming weekend and it's made me so excited to embrace all things summer - I'm thinking BBQs, sunbathing in the garden and a trip to a beer garden might be in order!

One of the things I love most about this time of year is switching up my makeup - there's nothing better than embracing golden skin, taking things up a notch with shimmering highlight and basically becoming a golden goddess. I feel at my best at this time of year - I wear my favourite summery perfume, change up my makeup and just generally feel a lot more 'me' (I'm a summer baby after all).

So, I've teamed up with Boots to share with you the go-to beauty products I'm using this summer, to give you some inspiration if you're looking for ways to switch up your makeup bag over the next few months.

Isle of Paradise Self-Tanning Drops

If there is one thing I can't be without when summer finally rolls around, it's got to be a tan. I'm all about faking it as opposed to baking it, so slapping on a bit of the faux stuff becomes a huge part of my beauty regime at this time of year. However, one thing I've always struggled with is getting my face sufficiently tanned. Now, thanks to the incredible Isle of Paradise it couldn't be easier. I'd wanted to try these tanning drops for so long and they didn't disappoint - simply pop a few drops in your moisturiser and you're good to go. I love how I get all the benefits of my favourite moisturiser while getting a tan at the same time - no need to opt for gradual tanning moisturisers if you've got this little baby in your life. It is cruelty-free, vegan and comes in three shades (I use medium), so you most really can't go wrong. I absolutely love it.

Ole Henrikson Banana Bright Face Primer*

Ole Henrikson is a brand I've admired for their skincare for a while now, so I was really excited to try their Banana Bright Face Primer. I think a primer is an absolute must during the summer, to keep your foundation looking fresh even in the scorching heat. The great thing about this primer is that it's brightening - so not only helps smooth out your skin to create a flawless look, but it brightens your skin to give a healthy-looking glow. I'm amazed at how much a difference it makes - I don't think I've ever seen my skin so glowy, so this is definitely an essential in my makeup bag this summer. It smells really good too!

Too Faced Natural Eye Shadow Palette*

I love natural, golden shadows at this time of year, and this palette from Too Faced is absolutely stunning. I used the shades Honey Pot (which really brings out the blue in my eyes) and Chocolate Martini to create this look, and I think it's my new favourite. You just can't go wrong with golds, browns and natural-tones to complement your golden glow during the summer. Too Faced's eye shadows are so buttery soft thanks to their coconut-infused formula, as well as being super pigmented and easy to blend. I also think it would be perfect for an evening holiday look with a little bit of glitter over the top - check out Boots' glitter makeup for a bit of inspiration.

Bourjois Paris Delice de Poudre Bronzing Powder*

Bronzer is top of the list when it comes to summer beauty, and Bourjois' bronzers have always been a favourite of mine. The Delice de Poudre is a gorgeous matte bronze which has really fine golden sparkles in it, to further add to your glow. It blends beautifully and is shaped like a chocolate bar - what more could you want? I wear the light/medium shade, but a darker shade is available too.

Sleek Solstice Highlighter Palette*

Highlighter is definitely up there with bronzer as a summer essential, and Sleek's Solstice Highlighter Palette has been my favourite budget highlighter for years now. It is the perfect mix of  gorgeous glowy powder and cream highlighters and I absolutely love the golden powder shade for giving my skin an incredible shimmer. It's what I'm wearing for this look and I think it completes it perfectly - I add some to my cheekbones, a little bit in the inner corner of my eyes and on my brow bone. It's crazy how much of a difference it makes!

Sanctuary Spa Body Spray*

Summer wouldn't be summer without a signature summer fragrance, which will whisk you back to previous summer holidays for years to come. My fragrance of choice this year is Sanctuary Spa's Fragranced Body Spray. I loooove everything Sanctuary Spa do and this is no exception. It is a gorgeous mix of citrus, jasmine and bergamot with sandalwood, vanilla and patchouli and smells just like you've stepped into a spa. It's such a stunning summer scent and it definitely rivals some of my more expensive perfumes! 

I'm so excited for a great summer and can't wait to wear these products every day over the next few months. Will you be switching up your makeup and fragrance for summer? I'd love to know which products are your favourites at this time of year! 

If you're looking for a cute place to visit in the UK over the summer, I totally recommend paying Whitby a visit. I remember going loads as a kid but I hadn't been for years and as it's somewhere me and my boyfriend wanted to visit together, we decided to go for our anniversary last weekend.

Now, the weather didn't look promising but thankfully when we got there we had minimal rain and on the Sunday the weather was glorious - lots of sunshine and so warm! I'd probably recommend packing for all seasons if you are going there - we all know how reliable British weather can be!

I thought I'd do a little run-down of what we got up to, the best places to eat, shops to visit etc. so if you're planning a trip to Whitby this summer you'll have all bases covered.

Where to stay

So, while we decided to be at one with nature and (and, let's face it, save some dollar) by camping, there are loads of different options for where to stop in and around Whitby. Being a seaside town, there are dozens of cute B&Bs to stay in, but as we were just going for one night we thought pitching up the tent would be a good, cheap option. We stayed at the Hooks House Farm campsite in Robin Hood's Bay, just down the road from Whitby (about a 10-minute drive) and I'd definitely recommend it if you're thinking of camping. The facilities were great - nice washrooms, even a little kitchen area to boil the kettle/make some grub if you don't fancy doing it the caveman way, and a gorgeous view of the bay.

If camping is out of the question, a couple of places that caught my eye when searching were The Belfry Whitby and The Shepherd's Purse.

What to do

Whitby in the sunshine is a dream - and the things to do are pretty endless. We kicked things off by visiting Falling Foss Waterfall and Tea Garden - an absolutely adorable place that I recommend everyone goes and visits when in Whitby. It was raining when we were there but this didn't dull the place's magic - we grabbed a hot chocolate and a slice of cake and sat in the tea garden (which is thankfully under cover) which was absolutely lovely - the cakes there are to die for. The waterfall was beautiful and there was also a cave and other bits and pieces to see walking-distance from the tea garden. 

The shopping in Whitby is great - there are so many cute little quirky shops, from chocolate shops to jewellery shops selling Whitby jet and my personal fave - the lucky duck shop. I vividly remember visiting the shop as a child and picking my very own birthstone lucky duck - a cute little guy made out of glass (the shop is basically a glass shop, full of cute little glass ornaments). These little fellas are famous worldwide and I really think they work - I remember taking mine into my exams with me! I picked up a cute baby pink one while I was there because it would be rude not to, right?!

Whitby Abbey is absolutely stunning and a great place to go and visit - even if you don't actually go inside, but admire it from afar. Any Dracula fans will know it was the inspiration for the book and as I love Bram Stoker's novel this was such a treat for me. We walked up the 199 steps (a great place to admire the views of Whitby) wandered around the castle and also headed to Bram Stoker's seat across the way - supposedly where he sat when he became inspired to write the novel. I had to get a pic there just because... maybe it'll inspire me to write mine?

Obviously it wouldn't be a visit to Whitby without heading to the sea front, posing in front of the rainbow of beach huts and grabbing an ice cream. Take a walk along the harbour, head to the arcades and finish things off with some fish and chips. 

We also took a drive to Hayburn Wyke (between Whitby and Scarborough) and walked down to see the cove, which was so lovely and peaceful (but also very rocky!). We were accompanied by the cutest dog Holly (from the pub nearby) who showed us the way there and stayed with us the whole time. She was definitely another trip highlight - despite being extremely demanding when it came to throwing sticks! 

Scarborough is just a stone's throw from Whitby so we thought it was worth paying it a visit on the way home. Again, it's a great place to grab an ice cream and have a go at the arcades but I thought the best thing about it was Peasholme Park - a gorgeous Japanese-inspired park with a boating lake and the most friendly squirrels you'll ever come across. We went armed with nuts and got some amazing pics of the little guys - one even sat on my knee at one point! Feeding the squirrels was definitely one of the highlights of my trip! 

Where to eat

I'm pretty sure I'm not alone when I say one of the things that really excites me about taking a trip somewhere is trying out all the different restaurants and cafes I've never been to before. Whitby and Scarborough are chock full of amazing places to eat. For the best fish and chips in Whitby head to The Magpie Cafe - so many people recommended this to me and I wasn't disappointed. There was a bit of a queue to get inside but the food was great - I opted for a veggie pasta bake but Tom informed me the fish and chips were amazing.

Another great place to eat I'd recommend is the Hayburn Wyke Inn - we visited here for a well-earned meal after walking down to the cove and back and it was such a lovely pub. Covered in fairy lights with a warming fire and all the different flavoured gins you could ask for - I was in my element! They also had loads of veggie options (I had veggie lasagne and it was DIVINE) and just had a really lovely atmosphere.

For breakfast in Whitby I'd recommend Cranberry Swamp - this super quirky cafe will give you all the retro vibes and the pancakes I had there were absolutely amazing - I'm also pretty sure everything there is gluten-free.

If you do decided to tie in a trip to Scarborough with Whitby, then The Harbour Bar is a super cute fifties-style ice cream parlour that does some incredible sundaes. It's on the sea front and gets very busy, but you can also grab ice creams to take away from a little window they have on the side of the cafe. They even do bubblegum flavour!

Overall I'd really recommend taking a trip to Whitby this summer if you fancy a relaxing break by the sea. I'd say there's quite a lot of walking involved so pack some comfy shoes, remember to pack for all weathers and also BRING CASH! We got caught out so many times as everywhere in Whitby and Scarborough seem to be cash-only!

Will you be visiting Whitby or Scarborough this summer?