Alice Megan

Thursday, 11 October 2018

Finding the perfect dress: How to match your shape and skin tone

We come in different shapes, sizes and complexions and when it comes to fashion, we all have our own personal preferences. Me personally? I have a body like a watermelon and a skin tone of casper the friendly ghost! But even I can match up my shape (round is a shape guys it totally is) and skin tone to find the perfect dress

If you’re looking for the perfect dress for that special occasion in your calendar, it can be tough to figure out which style will flatter you best – especially when there’s so much choice out there. That’s why we’ve teamed up with River Island, experts in everything from bodycon to bardot dresses*, to help you find the perfect dress to match your shape and skin tone

Perfect Dress x1
Perfect Dress x2
Perfect Dress x3
Perfect Dress x4
Perfect Dress x5
Perfect Dress x6
Perfect Dress x7
Perfect Dress x8
Perfect Dress x9
Perfect Dress x10


Perfect Dress x11


Once you've got your glad rags on and looking super stylish with a dress perfectly matching your complexion make sure you pair it with some gorgeous heels - check out Lace and Favour for a great range of occasion shoes* and you're ready to hit the town and dance the night away

What type of dress is your favourite?
SHARE:

Monday, 8 October 2018

5 winter car care tips to keep you on the road

Winter is coming.
No seriously, and it will be a damn sight faster than in Game of Thrones. Today's the first day I've had the heating on which makes me think it's going to be here much sooner than we think, this is my very first winter as a driver (I only passed in February) so I've been doing quite a bit of research into how to stay roadworthy and safe during the frosty season and what checks I absolutely need to do before going anywhere so I thought I'd share my tips with you guys

Yellow car tyre stuck in snow

Tyre Checks
Check tyre pressure and tread levels regularly making sure that it's wearing evenly, if it isn't then it indicates a need for wheel alignment so finding tyre's at affordable prices from companies such as Calmac Northampton tyres* will mean that it can stay within budget before it becomes a much bigger problem. If you want to go all out for the winter then consider winter specific tyres, these deal with cold, wet, icy and snowy conditions much better than regular tyres. Iverson offers a wide variety of tyre brands in London* so check them out for a whole range of winter specific 

Fluid Checks
You should be doing this all year round but it's even more important during the winter as you don't want to get stranded without something essential such as engine oil or wiper fluid, antifreeze or coolant 

Battery Checks
Make sure your battery actually works because the increasing cold weather can really affect it, plus you're using more power than in the summer months with the extra lights, heaters etc. that you haven't had on, if you're having a few niggles it's definitely worth getting it serviced before winter

Winter Breakdown Kits
You're more likely to breakdown in Winter it's just a fact, so make sure you're completely prepared by having a breakdown kit in your boot. This should include screenwash, de-icer and a scraper. A shovel, torch and blanket. Food and drink supplies that are non perishable and snow grips for your shoes in case you have to walk to safety or wait on an embankment if on a motorway. I'd definitely make sure you're under a road recovery service like the  AA too as it really does give you peace of mind

Keep safe and plan ahead
It's a lot trickier in winter to plan trips and routes, make sure you always check traffic updates in case of emergencies, keep a fully charged phone if possible and make sure your gas is topped up, journeys can take considerably longer than you'd expect so making sure you have enough gas, charge and time to get somewhere will make your journeys much more enjoyable

What are your top tips for winter car care?
SHARE:

Friday, 28 September 2018

What you need to know when buying a car

Seven months ago I made a huge life step and finally passed my driving test. I genuinely can't believe it's been that long already it's completely flown by and I've managed to keep myself and the car in one piece - winning! Now back when I did pass the first thing I wanted to do was get in a car and go, but it obviously takes a little longer than that. I sent off my provisional and prayed somewhere along the way they'd find a better picture of me than the current one (I look like casper the friendly ghost but less friendly) but whilst I was waiting for it's return I did so much research on cars so that as soon as it came back through I'd be well informed on what I'd want and what would be a good choice for my first car

Red audi speeding along country roads
One of the most important decisions I had to make was what kind of a car I wanted, did I want to fork out for a brand new car or did I want to take the risks of buying a second hand car. I toyed with both for so many hours because let's face it I had absolutely zilch experience when it comes to cars, If I'm ever asked what car I have it's a 'red one' so looking at lots of models and specs just absolutely flummoxed me. 

So I decided to toss a coin - well I might as well have because when it comes down to it you can never really predict cars I think mines got a mind of her own which is why Car Insurance is your most important purchase. It doesn't matter whether new or used as with good insurance from companies such as Aviva you'll be covered whether your new car gets damaged or whether your older car needs roadside repair, so make sure that whatever route you go down your insurance is top notch

I did weigh up some of the options of new and used cars and I thought I'd share my wisdom:

New cars are pretty aren't they? They're so shiny and have that new car smell, you know it doesn't have any hidden niggles because well no-ones used it at all. You'll always know it's service history and from day one you can make it your own. Insurance is typically cheaper because newer cars are generally safer and more eco-friendly. However that does all come at a premium which can be double or even triple what you can get second hand which is why I went down the second hand route

Second hand cars, you'll hear so many horror stories! About the people who spent pennies and wondered why the car didn't work after a week, what I'd say here is always do your research. Personally because I'm not an absolute car expert I went to a reputable dealer like Car People as I felt a little more reassured that whilst the car was second hand it had been thoroughly checked and tested and was passing with flying colours. I had clear access to the service records and my little run around had only had one previous owner who like me didn't seem to use it all too much. A smaller engine and a smaller car in general meant Car Insurance prices were reasonable and the car price itself didn't break the bank

Being a brand new driver to the road (because when you pass that's when the actual learning starts believe me!) I didn't want a flash expensive car it would have stressed me out completely. I opted for a cheap little second-hand run around and made sure my Car Insurance was the best I could afford to give me peace of mind. My car was planned to last me for a few years, I think maybe once I'm more confident I might opt for a new car that will last me donkeys years but right now I definitely think I made the right decision

Is your car new or second-hand?


*In collaboration with Aviva
SHARE:

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

How to save money without even trying



Once upon a time (around 8 months ago to be exact) I was a carefree 20 something with a lot of disposable income and not a lot of responsibility. Life was great, I didn't budget and just went shopping when I wanted to, fast forward to now and I'm a 20 something year old with a whole heap of responsibility in the form of a house and a car. I can't remember what disposable income is and I spend my days trying desperately to scrimp and save every way I can to be able to afford the nice little things in life too


Pink piggy bank white background


I think I'm pretty money savvy, even when I was carefree I managed to save enough for a house deposit and car so I'm not exactly new to this whole frugal living but it is much harder to save now. I've put together a list of the easiest ways you can save money without even trying, these tips are so easy you won't even notice the money until you've got a nice pot for a rainy day

Where and how to save
Before we start saving well you should decide where's best, some people prefer to save money in an ISA but personally I like the freedom of being able to access it if I need it. I have 2 seperate savings accounts away from my main account, the interest rate is abysmal but I find it the best way to save as I can quite clearly see what funds are for what purpose (holidays and house things). How to save is another personal thing you'll need to work out, I found that I'm not a lump sum kinda girl I always felt like I was losing the money and noticed it a lot. What I do is round up my purchases each day so that any spare change in my accounts goes into savings. For example if I've spent £7.80, I'd put £2.20 into savings. It grows really quickly and I like the satisfaction of my main account being a round number

 Switch and Save
Because I've only just moved into a new home, and had a car since February I implemented this right from the very start but there's always something you can save on. Make sure you don't ever just automatically renew contracts, shop around and compare prices on everything from your energy to your car insurance to your mobile phone contract

I've recently been trialling an app from a start-up company called yboo* and it's genuinely revolutionary in what it does, you download it onto your phone and it monitors your phone usage from the calls you're making to the data you're using to your location. It then uses this information to give you really tailored suggestions as to the best contracts for you. This is based on everything from price of bundles based on your current usage to signal strengths in your area. The app is super simple and very user friendly and can save the average user up to £156 a year! Which is definitely better in your back pocket - check out the video below for how it all works: 



Budget and Plan Ahead
This is probably one of the most important things you need to implement if you don't already. It doesn't need to be all singing and dancing the budget planner I use is fairly basic. But you should at least have a list of all your outgoings and incoming that you know about, plan for any other events such as birthdays that month. By knowing what should be coming in and out you'll be able to work out what you should have left to spend on a daily basis. Just the process of tracking purchases and outgoings can really make you think! I never used to bat an eyelid at buying lunch every day at work, until I realised I was spending upwards of £5 a day

Meal Plan
Which leads me onto meal planning quite nicely, when you go shopping do you just madly run around the supermarket without a plan? Because I totally did for so long. Now I try and set a little time on a Sunday to make a plan of what I want to eat that week, I use Mysupermarket to see where I should shop that week and then I often do the shopping online to help me resist all the treats and things I don't really need but end up in my shopping bag anyway


Vouchers and Discounts
Now even though I meal plan it doesn't mean I don't go out, eating out can be so affordable now you just need to plan ahead, download apps such as Vouchercloud to help you save money, I recently activated my Meerkat meals which gives me 2 for 1 at a whole heap of restaurants, many that I'd already visit so now I get to eat at these places for half the price. It's ridiculously simple to use and you won't even notice the difference apart from the extra pennies in your purse. This concept works for everything! Always google for voucher codes before buying anything because why spend more when you don't have to?


What's your top tip for saving money?


SHARE:

Saturday, 22 September 2018

Chocolate and Vanilla Marble Cake Recipe

Who doesn't love cake? This chocolate and vanilla marble loaf is one of my favourites and never lasts long in my house, it's super quick and simple to make but looks really effective

Chocolate and Vanilla Marble Cake

You will need:
Ingredients:
Vanilla Cake
  • 90g plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 113g butter
  • 100g sugar
  • Vanilla Essence
  • 2 eggs
Chocolate Cake
  • 68g plain flour
  • 32g dark cocoa powder
  • 88g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 113g butter
  • Vanilla Essence
  • 2 eggs
Frosting
  • 30g dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
Marble Cake

Instructions:
  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C, line your loaf tin with lining paper
  2. First make your vanilla cake in a bowl by creaming together butter and sugar until fluffy.
  3. Add in eggs one at a time and add a drop of vanilla essence.
  4. Slowly add the flour and salt to your butter mix stirring as you go, mix until just combined and leave to one side
  5. Next make your chocolate cake in a bowl by creaming together butter and sugar until fluffy
  6. Add in eggs one at a time and add a drop of vanilla essence
  7. Slowly add the flour, cocoa and salt and mix until just combined
  8. Alternating between mixtures spoon the mixtures into your loaf tin, use a knife to swirl the batters together 
  9. Bake for an hour, remove from the oven and cool completely
  10. While cooling make the frosting by melting the chocolate chips, butter and maple syrup together
  11. Pour the frosting mixture over the cakes and leave to set

Have you made this marble cake? Let me know in the comments I'd love to know how it turned out
SHARE:
Blogger Template Created by pipdig