My Article for ‘The Hectic Vegan’ E-mag! Vegan Beauty

A while back Rich who runs blog and E-magazine- ‘The Hectic Vegan’ contacted me with regards to being a contributor to the E-publication. I wrote an article about some of my favorite high end and budget Cruelty Free Cosmetics. The article has now been published! Be sure to check it out.

It is slightly out-dated in that Kat Von D is now sold in the UK and the line is almost entirely vegan and cruelty free. And ILLAMASQUA are now specifying vegan products as well as being cruelty free. Luckily I received products from Kat Von D for Christmas and I bought some ILLAMASQUA for myself for my birthday so keep an eye out for reviews on here!. Here is the link to download your very own copy of the magazine! 

Image result for bare minerals

 

Lots of vegan love, India

x

Vegan Dr. Martens Review

Been holding off my review since last January when I got these!

Mine are the patent ‘leather’ type; ‘Cambridge Brush’. They are 100% Synthetic and vegan.

Quality wise, they look and feel like regular Docs. Whether this is a good or bad thing is debatable. I got a small scar on my leg from the tops rubbing, so as with regular Doc Martin boots, be sure to wear thick long socks. I have purchased some of the Dr Marten brand socks and they are pricey (£8!) but worth it!. They are very warm and nice, and unless you are wearing skinny jeans inside your Dr Martens, be sure to grab a pair. I know some people wear short shorts, skirts etc, with no socks or trainer socks. YOU ARE FLIPPING MENTAL!.

I found the fit, true to size, room for socks and even insoles should be left. I recommend trying on lots on the high street before buying online.

Now ‘worn in’ the shoes are pretty much as comfortable as they will ever be I guess. They are strong although as I haven’t had them that long I cant say they will be long lasting. Perhaps others can offer insight into this. Unlike some Dr Martens, they don’t have a policy with regards to their strength of wear and life long last-ability. Mine have stayed waterproof, feel strong and are fine in the snow, scuffs brush off very easily too- the main difference I have found from my Sketchers branded faux dm style shoes- which get very tarnished.

They are an investment at £100 + however should last a while, and I got mine 1/2 price!

If you love Dr Martens and are vegetarian, I think the vegan ones will live up to standards for when  you need replacements! Alternately I heard Vegetarian shoes make some good dupes too!

Thanks for reading my review. On looks though, these are gorgeous. I don’t think this hot pink color is around in the UK currently (apart from ebay) but look! how shiny and cute!

Image result for vegan pink dms

 

Stocking filler or small sized Christmas gift ideas for all; 2016

Hi everyone and welcome to my gift guide for this year. It’s just a small list of gifts people on your list may appreciate as I think the huge cover all bases type lists are often generic, offering too many gimmicky and tick box gifts.

Hair ties- Whether you are shopping for a girl or guy, child or adult, anyone without short hair will need hair ties at one point or another, I love the type such as Popbands as they also look less harsh on my wrist than a plain coated elastic and are less obvious when being worn as opposed to a scrunchie which tends to stand out while in your hair, they also crease your hair less. Even if one always wears their hair down, a hair tie is useful if they run or go to the gym or have to tie hair back while cooking. The ones I am featuring here are from Etsy as following on from the list I did last year for the blog; everything featured will benefit Fair Trade, an independent crafter or small businesses, a charity or an ethical company with regards to policy

.Tinkerbell green, polka dot and white hair tie set. Hair bands, no kink, bracelet elastic     20 soft stretch hair ties, hair elastics, ponies, yoga hair ties, bracelets, ponytail holders - blue mix

 

Photographed above; The Little Bow Studio and Eco Blue Bands    

Ok… The next one, you can do yourself! It’s super easy- just use your kids old crayons and a playdough or cake mould or an ice cube mould. However not everyone has time to do that! So for the busy mum, dad or auntie here is the next one; recycled crayons!

Recycled multicoloured Christmas crayons - stockings - trees - bells - stocking filler - kids

Those are from a shop of recycled delights; Braw Things also on Etsy

The next one are earrings-I love these and although you would have to know the taste of the person you were shopping for (for example not someone who only wears subtle stud earrings or only buys Tiffany silver or just only wears silver due to allergies!) I think these are very cute and they are ‘Shared Earth’ too so are fairly traded loveliness.

Handmade Recycled Pencil Crayon Earrings, Fair Trade, Made in India

Next gift is from Love Libby who I received a beautiful kite necklace from last year (Thanks Mum!) They do an imense range of vegan jewellery too including new anti hunting fox stuff! Cute herbivore dinosaur stuff, which might suit a tween or anyone who likes cute stuff! They now do beautiful lockets too. All in non silver or sterling silver materials.

You are my penguin love locket. Open clamshell style necklace. Gifts for her - valentines gift, girlfriend gifts - cute necklace    Vegan animal rights necklace - anti-hunting pendant. Fox necklace. Handstamped no to hunting with fox necklace on 16" chain

Fox necklace and penguin necklace above as well as lots of personalized products (pet pawprints and photo necklaces), gemstones and more. From LoveLibbyX

The next gift are just some Hemp socks– the material is amazing and although expensive, its Christmas so…

 

Prefer less subtle socks? Go to Viva For Orca socks!

Usually when featuring candles I go straight to Harpers Bizzare  These are MY favorite candles (although at the moment I need wax melts for my melter instead) But I have decided to branch out, this one I thought would really suit the rustic house or may even be a nice gift for a guy who likes candles but doesn’t want anything more ‘girly’ looking. (So sexist I know; sorry to guys who like their candles very pretty and cute!
Recycled Wine Bottle Candle with Christmas Spice Scent

Scents include vanilla and whisky it intrigues me!Reclaimed Oak - Wax Melt Warmer / Burner

Wax melts come next as I mentioned them;

FREE UK DELIVERY! Gingerbread Men Soy Wax Melts x4 - Gingerbread Vegan Wax Melts - Christmas Wax Melts - Stocking Filler - Gifts for Her

CUTE! from Sophie and Lola

Christmas decorations come next- you can go to a local market to get nice handmade decorations or make them yourself too. If you are shopping for a vegan (and it has to be the type who would purchase items saying VEGAN on them) then Viva has a nice design.

 

 

From Vegan Stitch 

For Bath Products this year I am going to highlight Bomb Cosmetics again. They are in Garden centers, online and in department stores as well as being on Amazon. The Christmas Bath Blasters and Mallows for this year look great! All under this policy; w e believe that neither animals, humans or the environment should suffer for our luxuries.

  Dash Away Bath Blaster 160g

I wanted to highlight  a brand stocked somewhere accessible for all so I think its great that local garden centers and John Lewis sell these as well as online. Although there are great soap and bath goods stalls on Etsy and at Christmas Markets.

Another gift for kids I would like to show are these great quality fox and badger hand puppets on the ‘League against Cruel Sports’ webshop.

fox puppetbadger puppet

Last year they only did stuffed animals so the puppets are a wonderful addition to the site!

One more gift I would like to mention is on another amazing charity webshop. The Amnesty International webshop sells loads; from bird houses and solar powered car kits to pens and necklaces as well as having a great selection of books. These Stamps might be a nice gift for any crafters you know who use stamps. They are wooden and handmade in India. You could split the set for different people ie; owl lover etc or you could keep them together in the bag.

Animal Printing Blocks (4)

I hope you liked this list! All items are quality and affordable and all from ethical sources somewhere along the line, or supporting a good cause. As I said, I write these lists as inspiration. I have no problems with high street shops or Amazon being used for Christmas shopping and I have been accused of being consumerist myself but I believe every trade is creating jobs too; I would hate to see more redundancy due to lack of high street purchases. So although everything you wear or buy may not be organic, fair trade or 100% ethical, I would still urge you to support at least 5-10 local shops, small businesses, etsy sellers, charity shops while doing your Christmas shopping.  And to try and buy some recycled and fair-trade stuff too. Products from Facebook and Etsy sellers are often unique and wonderful gifts, as are items from places such as trade craft they can add a special touch to your gift giving.

Love to you all and hope you are enjoying your Christmas preparations xx

Vfestival – 2016 Weston Park

 

V festival was great, and I have been meaning to post about it. My main reason for going was the fact Justin Bieber was a headline act on the Sunday night as part of his ‘purpose’ tour but the whole line up was impressive. I would have liked to seen more but the rain was extremely heavy and obviously when you are with someone else, you try and accommodate them too.

A great extra at V festival this year was the Glee club comedy tent! I managed to see some fantastic stand up comedians and sit literally at their feet! It was great, a very involved series of sets and even further interaction and participation with the 2 compares. I managed to see Josh Widdecombe, Katherine Ryan, Sarah Pascoe, Bobby Mair (who is actually Justin Bieber’s 3rd cousin-for real and is hilarious) and loads of other well known comics as well as some less well known comedians who hadn’t been on TV as much if at all but were still hilarious!

Another nice touch would be the v pamper street area; donation only body paint, hair and nails from beauty bloggers and artists. I chose my nails and was treated by the talented nail art blogger; Polished Inka  She uses Barry M nail varnish too which is cruelty free and affordable, check out her blog for fun ideas! Pokemon Go nails anyone?

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Festival nails!

 

The musicians I saw were Corinne Bailey Rae, Little Mix, Jake Bugg, James Morrison and Sia then of course Bieber. Despite many saying Bieber was bad, I actually loved the performance, I found it really funny, Justin chatted about the weather, ate poptarts on stage and played around, sung 2 acoustic songs live with his guitar then lip synced to some others, and I didn’t find anything wrong with that. Sia gave my 2nd favourite peformance, her voice and songs are incredible but I still don’t really get the interpretative dancers.

Vegan food options were pretty good! I loved the quinoa hummus and veggie wrap and green smoothie I had from a smoothie stand and the Mexican chilli from Teabag Chihuahua which was also marked vegan. For breakfasts I found a real gem, Oatopia had coconut soy and almond milk, lots of porridge toppers like dates, banana and maple syrup, barista coffee and both vegan flapjacks and raw balls! They also took card so no pricey cash withdrawls! The Churro stand had nice vegan churros, and there were plently of places doing hummus, sweet potato chips, fruit and jacket spuds.

What I packed clothes and makeup wise;

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I actually wore most of it!; I got changed frequently due to the weather so I was glad I had taken so much!

Overall I really enjoyed the comedy and music at V festival and would definitely recommend it but do take lots of toilet roll, baby wipes, black bin liners (to keep your stuff dry) , waterproofs, a water bottle and an emergency blanket!

India

x

Have you seen my Youtube channel yet?

So, It recently came to my attention that some of my readers did not know I was on Youtube!

So far my channel is mainly Disney Hauls, But there is a cruelty free cosmetics video and I have just done a USA vegan snack haul!

When I have finished all my ‘What I bought in America’ videos I shall take suggestions for any other Disney or Vegan related vlog ideas so do subscribe!

MY CHANNEL!

Thanks so much!

India

Day 7- Big Giant Shopping Fest at International Premium Outlets

Today was exciting! It was shopping day!

We weren’t relying on a resort shuttle so I had the hotel breakfast buffet, it was nicely surprising, I had toast with chocolate syrup, a cinnamon raisin bagel with peanut butter and jam, cereal with milk I had bought at the supermarket, melon, pineapple, cinnamon sugared pecans, a banana and some grits. Very full and feeling I had got my monies worth we grabbed an uber taxi to the Orlando International Premium Outlets. This was further than the Vineland location, it was up on Idrive in Orlando but I heard it was bigger, and it had the Victorias Secret Outlet.

 

In VS I got a dress, cardigan, pullover and the 5 for $25 pantie deal, I tried on some bras but none of the recent ranges which I love (the really comfortable lacey unwired style ones) were in stock and the prices weren’t as heavily discounted as I expected.

We moved on to Sketchers for some gorgeous shoes, Shoe comfort-ability is super important to me. Then American Apparel and Amercian Eagel, Didn’t see anything striking in either so we went to Aeropostle! They had 30% off all sale prices, so I went a little mad. $3 Tees….

Next the Disney Outlet, I have done a video especially for this bad boy! You will not believe how incredible it is! Real Disney Parks merchandise from both WDW and Disney Land at up to 70% off! Clothes, Toys, Christmas Decor…. You name it!

We got hungry at 3ish so had some lunch, Mum had some noodles but I fancied something more ‘junky’ so I had the veggie option at five guys which is basically a bun fully loaded with all the salad veggies, fried onions and mushrooms and all of the sauces except mayo, the cajun fries were the best bit though!

Not to forget Claires who had some nice cheap $1 subtle jewelry. Nice in that it looked expensive but wasn’t. The ditsy style of the chains was super cute but the price means you wouldn’t kill yourself if one were to get lost, say at a festival etc.

I also liked Justice, Its a kid- tween shop but some of the things were quite cool; I grabbed some nice vests. Then the Yankee Candle Store where I finally got a Wax Tart melter (Its electronic and was only $12!)

Mum went to the Levi outlet where she got some nice jeans for just £25 dollars and some shorts for the same, she said they are the most comfortable denims ever… Then onto Gymboree which is a kids clothes shop for Sebastian gifts. We looked in more shops, but didn’t buy anything else, If you like The North Face though, they had some jackets and coats at 50% off.

We uber-ed back to the hotel where I had a nice swim in the non covered pool before having another Amy’s Kitchen meal. I was happy with my purchases, I always feel guilty after shopping but at least I know I had saved all of my money from work and birthdays and some huge savings were made!

Here is the Haul video!-  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-Qh1IwmwUQ

Grönn- The Eco Hair Salon

As a vegan who tries to be an ethical consumer; finding a hairdresser can be a HUGE challenge! Most hairdressing Salons use products which are A) Won’t confirm if they are tested on animals or B) contain animal byproducts or ingredients. These brands include Tigi, Trevor Sorbe, Vidal Sassoon, Toni and Guy and Guinot. The only salon specific professional hair range I knew about that was approved as cruelty was Paul Mitchell (who make an AMAZING hydrating shine spray by the way!)

That was before I discovered Gronn. A while back, when riding my bus to work, I noticed a building being renovated, I observed it every day- It had a cute sign ‘Gronn Eco Salon, Coming soon…’ When I found the page on twitter, it had a cute bunny logo- It sounded promising. As a vegan with a very curious (not nosy) nature, naturally I was intrigued.

Fast forward a while, and I had met the owner at Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival when she visited me at Lolo’s Vegan and Raw and had attended the preview party at the salon.

Gronn is the first of its kind in the North of England, A fully ethical, vegan friendly, eco friendly, sustainable little salon. The products are incredible and the stylist Rachael is extremely talented, the interior is fashionable yet ecological, the whole place is just tranquil and beautiful.

Upon entering the salon you see a tank filled with lime water, recycled wood decor, sleek cruelty free products and a lovely mood is set. Davines is an Italian brand specializing in natural and planet friendly high quality hair care so your hair is getting the best plus all hair treatments come with a consultation so you can ensure that Rachael knows exactly what you want.

A nice touch is a hot beverage during your treatment, I chose coffee with coconut milk and a vegan cookie my friend Pam here chose a pot of tea.

And now, what you were all waiting for, my hair! I chose to have my blonde highlights replenished, with lots of different shades, Rachael told me the lightener she uses is ammonia free so more hair friendly than classic peroxide. The products smelt amazing too! In terms of cut have finally nearly got rid of my layers so I just had a trim of my split ends and some evening.

before shot….

 

And after…..

Rachael explained how she is collecting all the hair for a special charitable project- but I won’t give away the details, ask her yourself. Soon Gronn will be getting a garden in partnership with Incredible edible! And a vegan friendly beauty therapist upstairs. So do join the Facebook page, follow them on twitter and book an appointment now!

Hello Youtube!

As requested I have started a Youtube Channel; I shall be vlogging my Orlando holiday. Walt Disney World, Shopping, Food and Clearwater Marine Aquarium!

If Walt Disney World Diaries, Shopping Hauls and tours of stores (grocery, outlet, wholefoods etc) in the US interest you then subscribe and just watch what you fancy! I will also be joined by some vegan pals from across the pond on some videos!

Video 1- Introduction (eye contact is terrible on this one and I say ‘And’ too much

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrjPCcoUlU4

Video 2- Pre-holiday shopping in Manchester; Hollister, Primark, Disney and Cruelty free goodies and sun-care from Superdrug, Lush, Bare Minerals and Tropic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOT30-KZoIw

Thanks!

India

January Sale Bargains and party planning

I haven’t posted much of late so I thought I would post a quick update, featuring all the goodies I bought both on Boxing Day and since. I am also going to tell you a few details for My 18th Birthday Party! It is my birthday on the 25th of January and on the 26th I am going to see Mary Poppins,which is one of my favorite films, at The Palace Theater. I am also having a big birthday party; very exciting as I have not had a party in an external venue or hall since I was a little child. The party is going to have a loose Disney theme, I have a sparkly tiara to wear, we have ordered a Disney cake, I am making Disney decorations and I have asked for spending dollars for when we go to Florida as gifts! The other great thing is that as around 30 of my guests are vegan and even more are vegetarian, I can make the buffet cruelty free with no complaints! There will be lots of delicious food, Samosas, Doughnuts, Hummus and Pizza to mention a few. I have also been busy creating playlists for an awesome disco, so if you are attending…. be prepared to bust some moves. Of course I have made sure there is a large variety of tracks, some modern and some retro.

I hope you had a good New Years Eve by the way! (I went to see midnight Starwars in IMAX)

Now then, onto the pictures of the ‘sales haul’ My first stop on Boxing Day was LUSH. As you may know, I love the brand ethics at LUSH and I was delighted to see that all of the Christmas stock was 1/2 price! On the way out I bumped into two friends from ‘Vegan Manchester’ which was a co-incidence.

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Snow Angel Bath Melt, Snowcake Soap, 3 x Buche De Noel Cleanser, Emotional Brilliance powder and Light Yellow base color,  Christmas FUN, Butterbear tin, SANTA baby lip tint, Snowfairy mini

 

I was very pleased with my spree as Mummy had bought my sister the butterbear tin for Christmas and I was super jealous. I was also glad to get the other bits- I find Snow Angel super moisturizing; in the winter when too cold to apply body butter then Bath Melts help soften skin. The Lip tint is incredibly long lasting and I now have enough cleanser to last a while! When It has run out then I can recycle the pots and get a free face-mask! LUSH perk!

Next up we went to The Disney Store. It was a shame to see the Tsum Tsums I had got for Christmas were 1/2 price but If I hadn’t been given them then sods law would have meant they would have gone and sold out. I did find some nice bargains though. An autograph book, lovely Elsa and Aurora T-shirts, £5 Pooh Pjs, Hairbands, Gel pens, a pretty mickey blanket for my bedroom and a Tsum Tsum jumper…

Following that, I braved the crowds at Accessorize, sadly none of the makeup was reduced, however I did get some gorgeously soft PJ’s.

 

Onto my miscellaneous buys….

Above ; Warehouse cardigan, Hollister perfume, Primark apparel, underwear and clothing, Hotel Chocolat santas, Starbucks travel mug

And finally- my online spend

I loved the red glitter chevron decor items in Claire’s Accessories and I managed to get them half price!  3 cute little boxes, a lock box which is perfect for storing all those little bits and bobs and a makeup chest filled with sparkly eye-shadow.

I hope you enjoyed hearing about the goodies I snagged and getting a sneak peak of things to come, ie; MY BIRTHDAY PARTY. I will leave you with this Christmas card worthy photo of myself with my nephew and sister on his 2nd Birthday at Winter Wonderland Manchester. Happy Birthday Sebastian!

PTDC0427

Too cute!

India

What I got for Christmas 2015!

I had an absolutely amazing Christmas 2015 full of magical memories and experiences. I also received huge amounts of amazing presents, with thanks due to my family and friends for being so kind, generous and thoughtful. And thanks of course to Father Christmas too.

Above- Presents under the tree, Love Libby Kite Necklace, Chocolate and Hollister t-shirt

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Kedma dead sea minerals face mask, BeautiQ IQ choc, Starwars socks, Tsum Tsum and Disneystore stationary, festive pants and socks, Lenny and Larrys cookie

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Chaplin and Disney Princess Boxsets, Booja Booja Champagne Truffles, Sophie Kinsella Book, Peace and Parsnips vegan recipe book, Cafetiere for 1,  Minnie mouse makeup bag, Mickey Backpack, Elsa dress, Cinderella mirror and bag, Fairylights, Heavenly Organics geranium oil, tin of cookies, socks, Studio eye shadow kit, Fox woolies set, Elsa mug, Olaf mug, Mary Poppins tree decoration, Winnie the Pooh pencil case, Assorted soaps and toiletries, Snowflake coloring book, snake bracelet, Starwars pjs, Frozen stickers, Sweet Revolution hot chocolate, Mickey beach towel, Giant mink effect throw.

Above- Ceramic pans, Christmas Tsum Tsum! Indian street food recipe book.

I also made a short video of me opening my secret santa gift from the vegan secret santa swap, which I organised on social media! – https://www.facebook.com/india.taylor.332/videos/o.719919551472269/1152165831467709/?type=2&theater

Above- Tsum Tsum page secret santa and me with my gifts!

I am so so grateful for every single gift I received and I feel very spoilt by my loved ones this year. I love everything!

Now, pictures of Marnie’s presents and Mum’s presents from me and stocking fillers. Mum’s main gift from me was new curtains for the lounge but I gave her these early so the house was pretty on the big day!

Mum loved her Marilyn boxset, bedding and Odeon cinemas giftcard most.

Above- Marnie’s gifts- 2 dog perfumes, pupcakes, sweet potato chews, fish skin chews, Anco root chew, Rosewood Dumbell, Reindeer and Snowman toys, Toy mouse, Betty and Butch treats, Minnie mouse custom collar and lead, Jingle ball, Apple and mint treats, Peanut butter treats, Betty Miller treats, Dougals Den Zippypaws hide a puppy burrow kennel, Kong Squeez toy, gingerbread man

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and look forward to sharing even more of my pictures with you.

Happy New Year

India x