Celebrating Easter with Hotel Chocolat*

When it comes to going all out this Easter, I don’t think you can do better than by heading to Hotel Chocolat. Whilst their stores might still be closed, their website is chock-full of goodies to help you indulge in over the holiday weekend.

I couldn’t resist trying the Extra Thick Patisserie Chocolate Egg – much more than your average Easter goodies, this behemoth has two different chunky chocolates halves, and is filled with the brands’ signature Patisserie chocolate truffles to enjoy.

An absolute feast of an egg, so it’s big enough to share, and the rich and indulgent chocolates are a real treat to enjoy. The fact that it comes in a beautifully fluted tin means that it makes the most perfect Easter gift too. I loved all the different flavours and textures, and it’s such a fun update to the classic egg.

I also got the chance to try their Dozen Quail Eggs – a collection of 12 delicious truffles dressed up as tiny eggs. With two of each flavour, it was a real delight to enjoy everything from plain chocolate to a fruity raspberry and heavenly chocolate. Best enjoyed with a steaming hot cup of coffee, one or two of these were the perfect afternoon pick-me-up!

You can find these, plus a whole host of other goodies on the Hotel Chocolat website here.

Where to go: York

It’s not looking likely that we’re going to get to enjoy a normal summer vacation this summer, but instead of dreaming of far flung beaches and exotic city spots, I’ve decided to focus on where to go in the UK to really make the most of when restrictions lift. One of the first spots I think I’ll be heading to is York. From Edinburgh, it’s only about two hours away on the train, and if you’re driving, it’s just about three, so it’s an easy spot to reach for a night or two away, and if you leave early enough in the morning, you can have pretty much a whole day to enjoy and explore the city.

The city is far from one of the UK’s biggest or busiest – it’s easy to navigate on foot, and there are a number of beautiful hotels to enjoy. I stayed in the stunning Principal a couple of years back, and absolutely loved it!

The city is far from one of the UK’s biggest or busiest – it’s easy to navigate on foot, and there are a number of beautiful hotels to enjoy. I stayed in the stunning Principal York a couple of years back, and absolutely loved it! The hotel is stunning Victorian Railway Hotel, so not only is it incredibly convenient for travellers, but it’s right in the heart of town too! You could see the Roman walls from some of the hotel’s windows, and the stunning York Minster is only a short stroll away.

If, like me, you’re a bit of a culture geek, a guided tour around York Minster can’t be missed. When we visited we had a lovely chap who highlighted key elements of the art, architecture and windows, and it really allowed me a greater understanding of the building, which has stood in the heart of York for nearly 1500 years. When we were there last, we ran out of time before being able to visit the Fairfaix House – a Georgian townhouse museum, but I’ve been dying to get back to see it. I’ve also been wanting to visit the famous Jorvik centre since I was small.

If that’s too many museums for you, York is pretty enough to want to wander round. From their iconic Shambles street (it’s touristy, but a must-visit) to dawdling down the streets and parks, it’s the perfect way to soak in some summer sunshine!

In collaboration with Hotels.com, but all views are my own

Press Health Foods & Juices*

When it comes to forming healthy habits, I’m a big believer in keeping things as simple as possible. Make a habit enjoyable, and it’s even easier to incorporate into my days. When I got the chance to try Press London’s Health Foods and Juices, I absolutely jumped at the chance. After all, we’re coming out of Lockdown in a matter of weeks, so I want to feel as good as possible, as I have a feeling that this summer might just be a busy one!

Getting Press London goodies couldn’t be easier – just head over to their website, and you can choose from a range of diets, cleanses juices and food packs, all of which are nutritionist-designed to be vegan, and as healthy as possible, and even better, absolutely everything I tried was absolutely delicious! I loved the mix of juices, soups and even dinners including curry and chilli, so if you’re looking for a couple of fridge fillers to enjoy on nights when you just don’t feel like cooking, Press London have your back.

Delivered in a climate controlled box via courier, the bits and pieces are all well secured, and I only had one casualty in the form of a slightly leaking soup. Not bad when you consider it made its way all the way from London to Edinburgh during the height of lockdown! Once I unpacked everything, I had about a week’s worth of morning juices and delicious suppers, it was such a treat not have to think about what I was going to have for breakfast, lunch or even dinner. The Fiery Coconut Curry was a real favourite – not too spicy, it was filled with vegetables, and paired perfectly with a bowl of brown rice.

Probably my favourite product from the whole box with the Berry Boost. A seriously delicious mix of lemon, mint, strawberry and apple, it tasted like a Strawberry margarita without the booze or calories! Seriously fruity, I had mine for breakfast, and it really set me up for the day, and I wasn’t even close to peckish until well after lunchtime.

The fact that the products are all vegan is such a plus, and this is a super simple way of cutting meat and animal products out of your diet without trying too hard. The fact that you can have your order shipped right to your door is incredibly convenient, and I’ve already placed a few orders as I just can’t be without them now!

You can find out more about Press London here.

Pantene Pro V Miracles

When it comes to things I’m aching for, a trip to the hairdresser is pretty much my number one. I was meant to get my hair cut and coloured right after Christmas, but obviously that wasn’t possible, so I’ve been left with strands in need of quite a lot of TLC, so when I got the chance to try Pantene Pro-V’s new Miracles Silky & Glowing Collection, I positively jumped at the chance. Designed to transform hair from straw-like to silky, it sounded like exactly what I needed.

As someone who washes their hair daily, I was pleased to see a shampoo and conditioner duo designed to hydrate and strengthen ends. With a formula including combines the power of Pro-V science, with Biotin and Hydrolyzed Silk Protein, it works to take hair from straw-like to silky (and in the face of hair which desperately needs cut, it’s a god-send). The formulas are lightweight, and leave hair feeling soft and shiny, and I have to say, the scent of the duo (alongside the line as a whole) is absolutely heavenly.

If you’re in the need of a real dose of hydration and strength, the Colour Damage Reverse Shots are the perfect treat. Used weekly in place of your normal conditioner, the formula is rich enough to really nourish tired ends without leaving my hair feeling heavy.

If, like me, you’re well overdue for your hair appointment, keeping brassiness at bay has been a key concern. I’ve not had my colour done since August, so a great purple shampoo has become a regular part of my hair wash routine. Pantene’s Purple Shampoo is fortified with biotin and hydrolysed silk protein, so as well as keeping your colour looking fresh, hair is hydrated and left looking and super healthy.

Last up is the new Pantene Intense Hair Rescue. A gorgeously thick mask designed to leave hair glossy and hydrated. Like the rest of the range, it smells absolutely beautiful, and I like to use it generously twice a week. After shampooing, I smooth it through the lengths and ends, then use a shower brush to make sure it’s evenly distributed. I then let it get to work for a minimum of ten minutes. The result is hair which feels silky and smells gorgeous. It’s an added bonus that the line is so affordable!

Pantene Silky & Glowing Range is available as a set from Superdrug here, and is priced at an incredible £10!

Pixi Beauty Glow Mist*

When it comes to products which are seriously hyped up, Pixi’s Glow Tonic has to be up there. By this point, it’s one of the most iconic product on the beauty counter shelves, and like millions of others, I love it. So, when I saw the brand had released a Glow Mist, I couldn’t wait to give it a try – Pixi products really agree with my skin, so finding a new favourite is always so much fun!

With a ‘shake it to wake it’ formula, the Glow Mist mixes an incredible 13 natural oils for a product which gives skin a beautiful hit of moisture. After moisturising, I love a quick blast of it as a dewy primer – it stops foundations from looking or feeling too heavy, and spritzed over a full face of makeup leaves it looking fresh and natural. I especially love it for days when my skin is feeling a touch delicate or sensitive –  the aloe vera and fruit extracts help soothe and heal skin for a smoother complexion. Whilst propolis and Argan Oil help to repair and intensely condition skin, maintaining the natural moisture barrier to defend against environmental aggressors.

Pixi Glow Mist is priced at £20 and is available here (UK) and here (US)

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