Sundays and Somedays

Favorite New Fall Shoes

StyleBrenda McIntosh1 Comment

It's that time of year - the weather is getting a bit colder, leaves are beginning to fall. A change in season is always so refreshing (not least due to the cold air). It's no longer too hot to bake, cozy blankets can come out of storage, and - maybe most importantly - you have an excuse to make some additions to the wardrobe.

Today, I'm talking shoes - I've added a few new pairs to the lineup (adults can back-to-school shop too, right?) and as I'm delighted with these buys, I thought I'd share them.

| Topshop Glitter Slingbacks |

I saw these shoes and even though my rational self said, 'no, those aren't practical, where would you wear them?' I just knew they'd be too perfect to pass up. With their block heel and wide straps, they're actually comfortable enough to wear for long periods of time (I'm liking this thick heel trend).

You might think the sparkles are a bit much for everyday, but I disagree. Metallics match most anything and paired with a pared back dress and black tights, they're perfect for a weeknight dinner or brunch (and yes, maybe even the office too). I have a feeling I'll be getting a lot of use out of these (sorry, rational self).

| Boden T-bar Flats  |

No one does basics quite like Boden. I love the subtle touches that add a bit of playfulness to their pieces, whether it's adding a small bow to a pair of flats, or adding some sheen to a classic breton.

I've been seeing saffron yellow more and more and loving the look, but rather than go full-on, I've decided to dip my toes (er, feet) into the trend with these shoes. The color is bright, but saturated so it works for fall, but I can see myself wearing these in spring and summer too (suede probably won't agree with winter, though).

These definitely work for work, but I also love how they liven up a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. Who knows, maybe you'll be seeing more saffron around here soon.

Zara burgundy ballerina flats with gem buckle | Favorite Fall Flats | Sundays and Somedays


| Zara Ballerina Buckle Flats |

Anyone else notice that Zara's been really good lately? Even though I've really tried to be good and not make too many trips to the high street, I've ended up with a couple of Zara buys of late - including these flats.

What's a fall wardrobe without a bit of fancy? I love the satin sheen, the thick strap, and the ever-so-slightly shiny buckle for a nice dinner with the husband. And post fall? These are just waiting for holiday party season.

Zara burgundy ballerina flats with gem buckle | Favorite Fall Flats | Sundays and Somedays
Zara burgundy ballerina flats with gem buckle | Favorite Fall Flats | Sundays and Somedays

Okay, no new shoes for me anytime soon. But how about you? What pair is your pick?

Until next time,

- B

5 Ways To Practice Self-Care

LifeBrenda McIntoshComment
A purple flower after a London rain shower | Sundays and Somedays

This past week has been a stressful one. I'm a naturally anxious person, and a few things have been compounding that lately to the point where I've forgotten to eat meals, been riddled with headaches, and unable to concentrate on the simplest of tasks.

This weekend, I decided that I need to focus on self-care. I've not checked emails, have generally stayed away from social media and have instead have listened to my body.

What does self care look like for me? It's doing the things I love, yet seldom take the time to do. It's eating healthy meals at the table (rather than in front of a screen) and being physically active.

Here are five ways to practice self-care and an example of each I've done this weekend. Admittedly, none of these are revelatory, but they always help me to reduce my anxiety and improve my mental state.

| Step Away from the Screen |

It's too easy to go from looking at a monitor at work, to going home and watching Netflix, and heading to bed, which really means scrolling through Instagram.

I find that looking at other people's highlight reel on Instagram can only serve to make me feel worse about myself. A favorite blogger might be traipsing around Italy, meanwhile I'm sitting on the couch in sweatpants.

 It's important to sometimes put the phone/computer/tablet down. Take a break from emails, the news, and social media. This weekend, instead, I picked up a new book (The Secret Lives of Colour) and it's felt entirely refreshing to take in some printed text. 

| Get in a Workout |

Nothing clears my mind and wipes away my anxiety like a good workout. It almost feels like my stress exits my body through the sweat. I never want to go to the gym, but I always feel so good afterwards - physically and mentally.

This weekend, I visited one of my favorite gyms, 1Rebel, for a morning spin class. The music, the dark lighting, and the tough workout cleared my head and made me feel more refreshed than I'd felt all week. Finished with a chocolate, peanut butter, vegan protein smoothie, it was a perfect Saturday morning. 

| Eat Whole Foods (at the table) |

Anyone else find that they eat on the couch, in front of a screen more times than not? I have a terrible habit of having dinner this way most weeknights. And a few times this week, I've simply just not eaten a proper meal at all (hello chocolate for lunch).

Friday evening, I stocked up on a few healthy staples - avocado, whole grain bread,  greens - and made an effort to prepare myself nice meals that nourish, rather than just quick ones that usually don't.

This meant avocado toast for breakfast (when normally I'd have a breakfast bar) and fixing my favorite salad for a couple of meals - a simple one that's just butter lettuce, parmesan shavings, pistachios and a drizzle of walnut oil.

Eaten at the table (not the desk or the couch) makes the meal feel special and helps me to be present and actually savor the food and the moment.

| Get Some Fresh Air |

Typically my day is spent indoors - whether it's in my apartment, the office, or a tube station. And when I'm outside, it's usually walking between those and surrounded by smog.

It's feels suffocating at times, as growing up I was always surrounded by greenery, and vacations were typically camping trips in the mountains. I find that being outside in nature, just like a workout, helps to clear my mind. 

If I'm in a rut, sometimes just a walk in a park can bring me much-needed clarity and fresh air just feels, well...refreshing.

This weekend, I decided to go out to seek some air. It was a rainy day, but the rain just made the trip outside all the more refreshing. I walked through a park in a suburb of London and took the time to snap photos of blooms that looked even better with a few dewdrops. And I certainly made a point to breath in the clean(er) air.

| Do Something You Love |

Many times, I put my needs last. I tend to prioritize others - whether it's my cats or work or something else - before myself. I've traveled enough where I should really know to 'secure my own mask before assisting others' but sometimes I forget that being my best is what's best for others.

On Saturday, after my spin class, I decided to do what I normally wouldn't - get off the tube a few stops early and do a spot of shopping at my favorite store - it's not something I typically let myself do (it's a hectic spot that others don't tend to enjoy and it involves spending money, which I'm trying to do less of), but it can be a real treat.

I bypassed the clothes in favor of a new book (above) and a candle, and took a scenic bus ride home (rather than hopping back underground).

Here's to an upcoming week that's now feeling a bit more manageable.

Until next time,

- B

Summer Makeup Staples

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Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays

With the arrival of summer comes sunshine, warmer temperatures, days spent outside in the park, and a bit of a change to my makeup routine. I want my makeup to feel lighter, more natural, and able to withstand a commute on the hot and humid tube. I've gathered my go-to products for a quick summer makeup routine - here's what I'm currently using and loving:

Bobbi Brown Ink Eyeliner |

I bought this on a whim while browsing the beauty aisles of Liberty London. I heard that Adele uses this brand (and of course, she's got the best eyeliner game in town), so I thought, why not give it a go? I'm glad I did - it's ridiculously easy to apply (even I can get a good cat-eye) and lasts all day, even in the heat!

Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays

Benefit 'They're Real' Mascara |

This has been my go-to mascara for a really long time - and for good reason. It gives me thick, long lashes with only a few swipes of the wand. The end of the wand is also shaped really well for defining those hard-to-get lower lashes. 

Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays

blink browbar Brow Colour and Build |

I've been making the rounds to several brow bars (which are apparently now a thing), and blink has been one of the best. I'm really loving these two products for summer as the color adds precise definition while the build wand keeps my brow shape and color in place all day, no budging!

Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays

bareMinerals Invisible Broze Powder Bronzer |

What's summer without a sun-kissed face? I add a touch of this light-as-air bronzer below my cheekbones for definition and then a very light brushing on my cheeks, nose, and chin (where a tan would naturally appear) for a sun-safe glow.  

NARS

spotlight on my favorite makeup brand

Since discovering NARS last year, it's quickly become my go-to beauty brand. Their products are always worth the cost, last for ages, and are quick and easy to apply. For summer, I'm loving these ones in particular:

Nars Creamy Concealer in Vanilla |

This is really a year-round product, but I love it in summer because I can apply it in the morning and the coverage lasts all day, even if I'm commuting on the Central Line in rush hour.

Nars Velvet Shadow Stick in Siros |

This was a fairly recent buy, but I love it as an alternative to a powder eyeshadow (which tend to become creased in hot weather). This one glides on and stays put. The Siros color adds subtle shimmer to my lids and is perfect for an everyday look. I'll certainly be exploring and buying new colors soon!

Nars Radiant Cream Compact Foundation in Mont Blanc |

Once summer rolls around, I trade my heavy liquid foundation for this cream one, which is a bit lighter and more breathable, but still provides me with medium coverage. Plus, the application takes seconds!

Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bolero |

I love coral colors in the warmer months. I tend to go for bright coral nail polish and more subtle peach colors for the lips, like this one from NARS.

Nars Blush in Orgasm |

A cult beauty product for good reason. I love this blush because it has a warmth to it that others don't - perfect for adding a little bit of sun-kissed color to the cheeks.

Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays
Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays
Summer Makeup Staples | Bobbi Brown eyeliner, Nars shadow stick, Nars creamy concealer, BareMinerals bronzer, Benefit They're Real mascara, Blink Browbar eyebrow gel | Sundays and Somedays

...and a couple of my current favorite summer extras. 

J.Crew Sunglasses |

I'm loving the candy floss color of these shades. I don't think I could get away with wearing these in winter, but for a summer day, they're just perfect. I'm also loving all the shades that are currently stocked in Madewell. I just have a weak spot for sunnies! 

J.Crew Earrings |

I snapped up these earrings in New York to wear for a recent Las Vegas trip (I went for some glitzy looks), but I'm finding that they add a bit of fun and sparkle to many of my everyday summer outfits. J.Crew's accessory game is always strong!

Until next time,

- B