The truth about the pressures of society.

A few weeks ago Meghan Markle gave birth for the first time. For those of you who don't know who Meghan is, she was an American actress on a successful show called Suits for many years and then in 2018 she married Prince Harry and became a part of the Royal Family, complete 180 right? As part of the Royal Family, she was expected to fulfil certain criteria whilst pregnant for the rest of the world. Usually, when someone from the Royal Family gives birth they will then show off their new baby within a few hours and Meghan didn't want to do that, which I think is fair enough, getting judged in front of the nation just after I'd given birth, I wouldn't want to do that. 

* This is a collaborative post* 

Although I feel like a lot of people begrudged her of it, when she finally did show off Archie, people started to critique her weight and the way her body looks. To me I was shocked that people could believe these things let alone saying them, and although, Meghan likely won't see the comments it does make you wonder what these people think of the rest of us in society. 8 out of 10 new mums suffer from the Baby Blues, which is completely normal after giving birth, but the additional pressures are never going to help with that. Smart Cells created a great set of cards to help cards to see parents through the first few weeks of parenthood. From Meghan to any person in the spotlight who gets pregnant, gains weight or even loses weight the people of the world will have something to say about it. When you look at magazines in the supermarkets you see the covers are filled with toxic rubbish about celebrities, this person has gained weight or been dumped, it must be soul destroying for the person on the other end of these articles. 

As someone who suffers from anxiety and other mental health conditions, I know exactly what it is like to feel judged by pretty much everyone and most of the time that isn't even the case. Logging on to social media like Instagram can be a dangerous game when you're going through a tough time as you spend hours comparing yourself and wondering how you can make yourself more accepted by society. The standards are so unbelievably high these days I feel like it is almost impossible for anyone to feel accepted.

Being a teenager and growing up with the internet was one of those things that had me questioning so much about the way I looked, what I should be wearing and how to feel accepted by those around me. Me being me and deciding that I was never going to be societies version of perfect had me taking the opposite approach and living for me instead of how others wanted me to be, it's a great feeling. It's one I still try to stand by now. But for those who are desperate to look like they're shown on TV or online, it must be hard to deal with as you aren't able to escape it as easily anymore as pretty much everyone has the internet. To be completely honest I don't think I will ever understand why we live in a world full of judgement and expect people to act and be a certain way as each person is an individual and life is too short to care what others think. Whether you're in the spotlight or not, the way you are and what society expects of you is too much and you're ok to step away from that in order to be happy. End of.   

5 "out of the box" Stag & Hen dos.

*This is a collaborative post* 

Out with the traditional Stag & Hen dos which are all about the alcohol, alcohol and more alcohol. Bring on the new, I am talking Don't Tell The Bride style, go-karting, boat trips, assault courses and tons more. Without the side of drama and lack of budget. Essential Adventure is a site full to the brim of fantastic Stag & Hen Dos. As most of you probably now know, I am engaged and hopefully planning on getting married in the near future and of course, I have wedding planning Pinterest boards on the go (which you can find here), as I am enjoying wedding planning I thought it would be fun to start to showcase some wedding based content on my blog, starting with Stag & Hen dos and today I am going show you my top 5 "out of the box" picks. 

Pizza Making Party:
Of course, something relating to pizza had to make it into my top 5, a pizza making party might not sound like most exciting thing from the title but once you find out what is in store you'll soon change your mind. With head to head challenges, prosecco, starters, your own pizza creation and pizza host with a private area to get creating your masterpieces. If you're interested in learning more about hosting your own pizza making party you can find out more by visiting the Essential Adventure site. 

Totally Wiped Out: 
Most of us have seen the TV Show Total Wipeout, It's A Knockout and Gladiators, this is a spin-off of that course that you can hire for your hen or stag party. With 6 action-packed activites including a sweeper arm and punch wall, the activities will last 3 hours in total, you can really let your competitive side out. It looks like such a fun day and not one you are going to forget in a hurry. It looks a lot less dangerous than Total Wipeout too, that programme was intense.   

Grease Dance Class: 
A huge fan of the film Grease like I am? The ideal Hen do for you is here. Learn some of the moves from the hit musical including We Go Together and also a traditional hand jive. It's a great start to any hen do and you get to feel the part with the pink ladies jackets being supplied for the class. If Grease isn't your thing there are a ton of other dance classes you can pick from including Dirty Dancing and Burlesque. 

Life Drawing Classes: 
Out with the strippers and in with the Life Drawing Classes which features a few drinks, a naked model (female or male) and a humorous experience. Plus it allows you to find out who really is skilled when it comes to art. This is an experience and perfect as an activity at either a Hen or Stag do and can be a great warm-up before heading off to do more activities.

Go Ape Adventures:  
The final activity on the list is Go Ape Adventures which has recently expanded to having 28 around the country so there is likely to be one nearby for you to visit. The classic Go Ape experience usually lasts between 2-3 hours and is set in a stunning forest. With zip-wires and tackling the crossings (just like Tarzan), you'll be having heaps of fun the whole time. 

I hope you enjoyed my post today about 5 out of the box Stag & Hen dos and I'd love to know what you did for your hen do/ what you plan on doing if you are getting married in the future. 

*Although this is a collaborative post, all thoughts are my own as always. 

CaseApp the ultimate phone case extravaganza!

CaseApp is a worldwide supplier of high-quality custom phone cases. They make cases for a variety of devices including iPhone, Samsung, Macbooks and Google phone. This isn't the first time I've spoken about CaseApp on my blog as I am a huge fan of them and their cases and they recently offered me the case to review some of their cases. If you fancy reading my first review you can check this out here.   

The CaseApp phone cases are available to buy in standard or as a hard case. The hard cases work with two layers, the first is a silicone case, and then the second layer is a hard plastic case. A case like this will protect your device from drops and falls, as well as looking fab. What's special about CaseApp is that it is completely customizable and you can even upload your own art and images to create a one of a kind unique case. If you're loving a design on the site but want to add something a little more to it, like a name or word you are able to edit most cases too. CaseApp offers premade clipart which is free to use on your own phone case. There are a variety of cute decals and quotes too.

I made two cases, one which is a collage titled 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder' which I created in Photoshop and uploaded to CaseApp to be printed onto a phone case. I was impressed with the finished result, and the quality is amazing. I chose to have this case have a matte finish, but you can also pick to have your case with a glossy finish depending on your preference. The phone case feels very sturdy and smooth and when you hold the case you can tell it's good quality. The second case was one of the premade ones from the site, if you know me, you'll know there's a reason I chose it (hint, it's because I love pizza!) I felt like the design was completely me and had a girly feel to it. A few artists I'd recommend checking out on CaseApp if you're planning on purchasing a premade one. If you're looking for something a little more on the colourful and fun side, I'd recommend checking out the cases by Paul Fuentes as they are amazing! If you are after something motivational check out The Optimist and finally if you're looking for something more simplistic but still fun there is Elina Dahl who creates some fantastic pieces. 

If you're interested in buying a case (or ten) from CaseApp you can get 20% off your purchase with code '20DUNGAREESDONUTS' which is active for the next few weeks.

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and do let me know in the comments if you purchase a case from CaseApp.

*This post contains gifted items*

The ultimate quirky gift guide 2019

*This post is in collaboration with The Gift Co and contains some affiliate links also 

1. The Personalised Smash Sweets Cup is made entirely from chocolate and filled up with gorgeous treats, similar to an Easter Egg once you crack it open the goodies inside spill out. The best part about this lovely gift from The Gift Co is that you get it personalised and you can also get it in a variety of colours too. It's a great gift for those sweet lovers in your life and the fact it is personalised shows you've gone the extra mile. 
2. Pixie Tears Gin for most adults alcohol can be a great present to receive, whether that's an expensive bottle of champagne, some pints at the pub or even a bottle of their favourite spirit. Thanks to Firebox you can get a variety of spirits with an additional twist. From Pixie Tears to Chocolate Orange and beyond. 

3. A gift which is pretty much certain to be unique is the David Attenborough Activity Book filled to the brim with amazing puzzles which are a tribute to the British Icon David. If an animal Wordsearch isn't your thing, don't worry, there are plenty of other surprises to come including David Hattenborough. It's only £8 so the perfect gift for those who are fans of Sir Attenborough. 
4. The Andy Warhol Soup Can Jigsaw is a fantastic gift for those puzzle enthusiasts out there or just for someone who enjoys something a bit more quirky as a present. This 100 piece jigsaw is an out of the box gift designed by Andy Warhol who is of course known for his pop art style. 

5. Grow Your Own Sunflower is a treat for anyone who doesn't have a garden or who fancies a little project over the year. With these grow your own kits popping up all over the internet, with everything from chillies to your own Christmas tree, there is one out there for everyone. Sunflowers are great as they're associated with happiness.
6. Top Trumps was my favourite game as a child and more recently Top Hunks has been in my top picks, however, make way for the Friends Edition of the game. Perfect for any friends enthusiast. As it is based on the friends top moments, we have to wonder what is on the cards. It better have Rachael getting off that plane (one of the tensest moments in TV history!) 

I hope you've enjoyed this post and I have a variety of other quirky gift guides if you fancy checking them out, including gifts that every student wants* and not your typical health and beauty guide.

National Vegetarian Week With Haribo.

Vegetarian Haribo
*This post contains gifted items, however, this does not impact my opinion on this post or the items which were gifted to me* 

May 13th-19th is National Vegetarian Week as well as Mental Health Awareness week, two things which are close to my heart. Being a vegetarian for the majority of my life and seeing the huge shift in the opinions of those around me who are also now living or trying to live a vegetarian life. So this week is about celebrating us vegetarians and embracing the lifestyle. In recent years I've seen the number of vegetarian options in restaurants soar from 1 or 2 basic choices (it's always the veggie burger) to a massive variety, some places even offer a menu packed full of goodness. It's not just restaurants who have upped their game either. 

There are plenty of companies who are taking the step to offer meat alternatives, most supermarkets now have their own range of vegetarian/vegan food, some of the bigger chains are stepping up too and offering meat alternatives to their well-sold meat products. I'm sure most of you know about the Greggs Vegan Sausage Roll that took the nation by storm and even had Piers Morgan 'throwing up' in a bin *eye roll*. Quorn who has been the meat alternative from the start have started offering so many more products than their sausages and mince, they're offering bacon, scotch eggs, chicken nugget and many more alternatives which is amazing. 

Vegetarian Haribo 2019
Vegetarian Haribo 2019

Recently Haribo has released a huge range of vegetarian sweets! When I think of sweets my brain instantly goes to gelatine and for those vegetarian sweets on the market they just don't have the same taste as their non-vegetarian siblings. However, Haribo has managed to change this, I wouldn't have believed it either without trying them. But I'm actually shocked how good they taste and you'd never be able to tell the difference. Haribo have offered Strawbs for a long time which I didn't realise were vegetarian either, but with a ton of new exciting options in their collection what will you pick. With everything from mini strawbs, to new and exciting flavours of Jelly Beans and a twist on their classic star mix, which they have named their funny mix.

I'm excited to see what is in store next for Haribo and their vegetarian range as it keeps extending to new products and also improving previous products. I appreciate being able to enjoy more sweets now as the range was super limited prior to this. My favourites are the Jelly Beans as they have some amazing flavours such as candy floss and popcorn, yum.

Vegetarian Haribo  
Vegetarian Haribo Funny Mix

Thanks, Haribo for sending me these goodies, I am enjoying munching my way through them whilst writing this post. I am loving the miniature versions of their vegetarian sweets too, it allows you to snack easier whilst on the go. I'd love to know in the comments if you're vegetarian and what your favourite meat alternative is.

55 Blog Post Ideas For When You're Stuck In A Rut in 2019.

The longer you've been blogging, the harder it can be to think of content ideas. I remember when I started blogging in 2013 there were always chats and a community to share inspiration with and the posts were a lot more simple back then. It was all about reviewing a product, taking some pics and sharing it with other bloggers for most. Since then, blogging has come a long way and although I still love to create content there have been times when I've got into a rut and not known how to get out of it. I made a list of blog post ideas for when you're stuck in a rut in 2015 and also 2017 but I feel even since then a lot has changed blog-wise. Some of these posts I've written myself which I will highlight so you can click on those for inspiration if you fancy, but a lot of them are brand new ideas. At the bottom of the post, there will be a version of the which you can download and keep handy for when you're lacking inspiration. 

Lifestyle post ideas: 
1. Top 5 podcasts 
2. Introducing your pets
3. How to shop on eBay/Ali Express/Shein/Wish. 
4. Pop Vinyl Collection
5. 5 must-see documentaries
6. Films every Disney lover needs to see. 
7. 15 facts about Friends/ (other TV show of your choice) 
8. How to dye your hair bright colours 
9. 10 creative fonts 
10. Favourite products / least favourite of the month/year
11. Your favourite films of all time
12. Photography tips 
13. How to get over a friendship break up 
14.Ways to seek help when you're struggling
15. Top tips for freshers 
16. How to survive a breakup.
17. How to make friends as an adult (I did a post about Bumble BFF)
18. Self-care ideas 
19. 5 beauty hacks 
20. 10 tips on how to study better. 
21. Ways to feel inspired
22. How to tackle Pinterest
23. How to get over a friendship break up 
24. How to write a great CV
25. Tips for caring for a pet

Food post ideas:
26. How to make galaxy food (I made galaxy pancakes)  
27. Best restaurants to visit when you visit (insert place here)
28. 10 easy snack ideas
29. 5 tasty meals on a budget
30. How to make the perfect cupcakes
31. A review of your favourite restaurant 
32. My dream menu

Fashion post ideas:
33. Shop my style 
34. Who inspires my style?
35. 3 ways to style your favourite item of clothing
36. Perfect locations for outfit posts you may not have thought of. 
37. Tips for getting the best outfit pictures 
38. Wishlists. 

Travel post ideas: 
39. 15 unusual packing hacks
40. 9 reasons to visit a place (I recently wrote about Florida) 
41. The ultimate travel must haves 
42. 10 places to visit on a budget 
43. 5 of the most romantic places to visit 
44. 15 iconic locations to visit
45. Travelling with anxiety
46. Hotel reviews 
47. Best places to get currency 

Beauty posts: 

48. Summer inspired makeup
49. How to make your own face masks
50. My skincare routine 
51. How to do the perfect winged liner. 
52. Testing a range of products (I reviewed MUA Pro Base and JOICO recently) 
53. Festival make up looks 
54. Makeup bag essentials. 
55. How to have a spa day at home. 

I hope you've enjoyed this post and are now feeling inspired if you end up using any of these ideas I'd love for you to share your posts with me. 

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The Ugly Truth About Body Image *TW* | #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek

This post may be triggering, so please read with caution. 

Society tells us we should love ourselves, we should be happy with the way we look and embrace our flaws. We are also told by society we need to be perfect, look a certain way and be a certain size to be accepted. It tells us that if we are "fat" we are going to die and if we are "too skinny" we may also die. No matter how we look, we are fighting a losing battle and it's no wonder we are struggling with body image now more than ever. With photo editing regularly used by the majority, it's easier to show ourselves in a different light online. You can hardly go throughout a day without seeing something regarding our appearance or way to improve ourselves. Vitamins, new clothes, weight loss aids, the perfect smile, the latest skincare you NEED in your life to look younger, or the easy ways to conceal your acne and ultimately becoming the best version of yourself. This impacts us whether we are 13 or 93. Yet we are still told to love ourselves as we are all beautiful and it's about what's on the inside that counts. I'm not sold on that concept.

This week is mental health awareness week (13-19th of May) and this year it's about body image. This is an issue that most of us have struggled with at some point in our lifetime. The mission this year is to create a more positive image around our bodies, as after all our body image and the way we feel about ourselves impacts our mental health. On a massive scale. For those who struggle with the way they look it does put them off doing things, whether that is meeting up with friends, going out on a date or going on holiday, body image controls these situations. For me, body image is at the forefront of the majority of my downwards spirals. Regardless of whether it's my acne playing up, feeling fat or disliking my facial features, it's an exhausting battle to work through, especially in a world where appearance is supposedly one of the most important things.

To my dismay, this will never change. But taking baby steps towards feeling good about the way you look is a fantastic place to start. The way in which you arrive at this conclusion will vary dependent on each person and there isn't a right way to do this. Whether this means deleting the social media which you feel affects you negatively, not watching model shows, ditching those friends who make you feel unhappy about your body or not going on dating sites like *ahem* Tinder, which can drag you down. It can take a long time to figure out what really is the root of the problem, as a lot of the time we don't realise the ways in which we are actually affected by until we take a step back.

Growing up around Tumblr, throughout my teens I didn't realise it was having a negative impact on me, I met so many people that I could talk to on there, I gained a pretty large following and loved answering questions. It wasn't until I took off the rose tinted glasses and realised how much I envied the girls on the site, whether it was because they were allowed long hair extensions and I wasn't, or the bright hair colours which changed every week or if they were super skinny (even though I was at the time, I didn't see it) they always looked amazing in their baggy shirts, fishnets and backcombed hair. I felt like I was constantly comparing myself to them and when I stopped using the site I felt 3000x times better about my body image.

So many people wish they looked like somebody else, and then that person wishes they looked like somebody else, you see where I'm going with this? Nobody is ever truly happy with their body 100% of the time, but you deserve to love your body as much as you can. Your mental health is much more important than the way you look.

I often use humour to deflect how I feel about my appearance and it tends to make a situation feel comfortable as it gives us something to laugh at. As a result, I've ruined pretty much any self-confidence I've had over the years. Plus, if you say the terrible things about yourself, it feels like when others say it, it feels a lot less painful. Amiright?  But it's about time I aim towards making myself feel good, well... about me, rather than becoming the joke. I am going to take the steps towards loving myself instead of hating myself. The way I look doesn't define me as a person and I'm starting to realise this more and more each day. It starts by finding the parts of you which you "don't mind" and turn that into a like, then from that into love. The more you tell yourself you like something about the way you look, the confidence will continue to grow. A final piece of advice to end this post, don't say anything to yourself you wouldn't say about your best friend, that tends to make us think twice about what we are saying, as nobody really wants to hurt their best friend.

To find out more about what the Mental Health Foundation is doing this year for Mental Health Awareness week, check out their site here. I've done a variety of body confidence posts on my blog as well as a selection of mental health posts throughout the years so feel free to check those out too.

How sleep impacts your mental health.

*This post is in collaboration with TEMPUR®, however, all thoughts within this post are my own* 

I have an on-off relationship with sleep, it's been going on for years. There are nights when I struggle to get any sleep, like I will be tossing and turning for hours and then there are other nights where I can hardly keep my eyes open and I'm straight to sleep. Like most of us, our lack of sleep can be attributed to worries around everyday life. In a survey conducted by TEMPUR®, 20% of the participants reported that they struggle to sleep due to family worries and a whopping 27% struggle to sleep due to stress. The survey also found that on average Brits get 6 hours and 42 minutes of sleep each night which sounds about right for me. Sometimes less, hardly ever more. Only 35% of the survey participants rating their quality of sleep to be good/excellent. As the TEMPUR® survey was conducted on 2,000 adults in the UK, the number of us rating our sleep as poor or inconsistent really isn't good. So what are some ways to improve our sleep?

Creating the perfect sleep environment: 
I've been reading into ways to help improve my sleep and one of the items on the list is comfort. For those of you who are in need of a new mattress now is the time to treat yourself. A new mattress can do amazing things, not only for your physical health but your mental health too. Alongside a new mattress, I often find purchasing new pillows and a duvet which works well for your body heat (thinnest one ever for me please) is essential for being able to get the best nights sleep all year round. I often sleep with a fan on as it allows me to feel cool enough to drift off, as nobody likes that humid feeling when they're trying to get to sleep. You should try to sleep in a pitch black room if possible.

Switch off the gadgets: 
Trying to get into a routine is key for getting optimum levels of sleep, going to bed at a variety of different hours and then waking up too early or too late can impact the following night's sleep. If you're like me, my phone and TV keep me up until after midnight and then I feel completely awake as I've been so interested in my devices when it comes to chilling out, it's almost impossible for me. As someone who regularly uses their phone late at night and early in the morning I do often find myself engrossed in scrolling through social media for hours at a time and not actually realise I am doing so. In aid to make me less likely to do this, I've started to put my phone on charge away from the bed so I actively have to move to go get it instead of it just being next to me.

Keep a sleep diary: 
Keeping a sleep diary can be a great way to find your sleeping habits and if there are any patterns within your sleep. If you have a smartwatch that you can have on during your sleep without it disturbing you, I'd recommend using this to monitor your sleeping pattern and start to pull together any links in your sleep cycle. Is it a certain time of day? Or can you remember what happened on that day? Jotting all of this down can be beneficial to work out what is causing you to have a poor night's sleep.   

Writing a to-do list for the next day:
I don't know about you, but whenever I can't sleep my mind wanders to all of the things I need to do the next day and I want to make a note of them in my phone. If you get into a habit of taking the time each day to write down any tasks left over from that day or new ones you need to do, it will allow you to have fewer things to worry about on your mind. Plus, it means an excuse for a new notebook.

I'd love to know your thoughts on getting the perfect nights sleep in the comments. If you have any further advice feel free to share it too! 

9 Reasons To Visit Florida in 2019.

*This is a collaborative post with Clickstay* 

Florida is known for a variety of things, the weather, Disneyland and being one of the friendliest places on the planet. The state is referred to as the "sunshine state", which people link to the state being friendly and always sunny. With a variety of fantastic tourist attractions, beaches and plenty of places to stay- whether you are staying in one of the theme parks, within one of the villas in Florida or with relatives, you're bound to have an awesome time in Florida. So without further ado here are my top 9 reasons to visit Florida this year.

1. The Weather:
The weather in Florida can be unpredictable like it could be sunny for hours on end then suddenly start pouring it down. But unlike the UK, the rain doesn't tend to last long before you're able to go out and enjoy the sun once again. The storms in Florida tends to cool the temperature down, however, it is still boiling! There's a reason that most of their villas are equipped with aircon.

2. Old Town:
Old Town in Kissimmee is a bit of a hidden gem but worth visiting if you're nearby. Old Town has a variety of shops, places to eat and tons of entertainment. Every Saturday night you can see the amazing classic car show and cruise, which is fabulous even if you're not a massive car fan.

Villa in USA, Grand Reserve

3. Amazing places to stay:
In Florida, a lot of tourists tend to opt to stay in a villa, not only does it allow you as a family to have your own space, they tend to come with your own private pool. Staying in a villa allows you to be able to cook your own food too, so if you're going with a lot of people or looking to save some money cooking is always a great option. Clickstay has some fantastic offerings, whether you're going as a family or a large group. For the whole of May, they are offering £25 off your first booking in May until the 31st for stays between 17th-31st, using the code 'LastMinMay19', you're welcome.

4. Theme parks: 
Florida has some of the best theme parks in the world, from Disney parks to Universal (you can my view my 'review' from when I visited here) and beyond, you're in for a real treat when you visit Florida. Even those who don't like rides, there is plenty of other things to do and see. Both parks are just an experience you won't understand how great they are until you've been. With interactive features, rides and a journey through the parks, these theme parks appeal to all ages. Oh, and if I haven't got your attention yet, Star Wars Galaxy's Edge Land is due to open in August!

5. Beaches: 
Florida is home to some of the best beaches in the world, whether you're looking for swimming, scuba diving or just topping up your tan, there will be a perfect beach for you. Visit Florida created an amazing guide on their beaches so you can find out just about everything you need to know about them.

6. Food: 
To me, American food is one of the best cuisines in the world. Now, that could possibly be because everything is bigger and there are so many more choices or that the food is actually amazing or both? Trip Advisor has some of the best restaurants and eateries ranked by the people who've visited them so it's a great way to know what you're going to get for your money.

7. The people:
When I visited Florida the people were so friendly and made me feel right at home, every shop you visit they're always happy to help and go that extra mile for you. It's a great feeling and you always feel appreciated.

8. Shopping:
With a variety of outlet stores, malls and independent stores Florida has it all, whether you're looking for a discount on some new shoes or to go to Bath and Body works you're covered. If you're interested in finding out what is on offer you can check out this guide to Florida Shopping Malls.

9. Wonderworks:
Out of everywhere, I've been in the world Wonderworks has to be my favourite, with over 100 interactive exhibits to see and learn from, anyone at any age can enjoy what Wonderworks has to offer. I'd recommend the natural disasters section and also the indoor rope climbing challenge.

So there you have it, folks, 9 reasons you should make Florida your number one holiday destination this year.

*This post is a paid collaboration with Clickstay, however, this did not influence my post in any way.