What ‘plus size’ looks like according to 5 retailers

So, there I was, fresh off the boat (and by boat I mean Qantas Airbus) from Australia, ready to sink my teeth into some good old British high street shopping (and by high street I mean not outside, not on a street, and definitely inside my bed).

“I’m back in the world of next day delivery”, I thought to myself gleefully. The sheer size of Australia means waiting 3-5 business days for something (on a good day)… AND there’s no post on Saturdays. It’s as though they think I plan my outfits in advance or something. Anyway, primed with my MasterCard and ready to plonk a hundy in my cart (£100 for those who need translation), I scrolled through the likes of Asos and Missguided with a grin from ear to ear. Until I saw this. APPARENTLY PLUS SIZE MODELS ARE SKINNIER THAN I AM.

Now this struck a nerve with me in particular as I spend most of 2014 on a treadmill shedding the lbs. Despite slowly but surely tronking my way through enough hamburgers to pile 11lbs back on in Australia, I was still proudly stomping about in a good dress size or two less than pre-treadmill love affair, so I still considered it a mild victory. That was, until I saw myself exposed to some slender little filly with a great big plus sign plastered across her face on a website. And not just ‘a’ website. The shock of the first exposure lead me to explore a few other similar sites, and I didn’t like what I saw.

‘Sizes 16-24’ they claim. Funny that, did you haul the clothing in at the back with a giant bulldog clip as you photographed it on this size 10 rack of ribs I see before me? Why are brands taking the credit for providing a plus size range, yet promoting the clothes on a girl who is far from the size range? Here’s what ‘plus size’ looks like in five different UK online retailers:

ASOS CURVE: Claiming to cater to the curvier lass, the Curve range comes in at a size 18-30. Which is why it obviously makes total sense popping this LBD on a girl no bigger than a size 12. Exhibit A. SHE PRACTICALLY HAS AN EFFIN’ THIGH GAP.

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MISSGUIDED PLUS: Probably the worst of the bunch, these cheeky little buggers have slipped this olive skinned stunner into a teal tea dress claimed to be for a size 16-24. As suspected, not a thunder thigh in sight. *crys into size 12 jeans*.

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BOOHOO PLUS: Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, OH HELLO BOOHOO. This little chica is wearing a crop top (YES, A CROP TOP) and maxi skirt and claims to be a size 16-24. Well. Let me just crawl into a hole and weep, then, because if that’s a size 16, then I sir am Camilla Parker Bowles.

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NEW LOOK INSPIRE: New Look faired slightly better in my assessment of their choice of models for the Inspire range for women sized 18-32, but there of course was one or two stragglers. Presenting the furthest thing from a size 18, ladies and gents. Chunky knees? No. Bingo wings? No again. Yet here I am rocking both, thinking I’m a size 10. Well, more fool me. Here she comes:

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H&M+: Ah, the Swedes. Known not only for their tasty (if not somewhat horsey) meatballs and creative furniture naming skills, they also spat out our old fave H&M. Our go-to guys for a pair o’ leggings or a quickie outfit for a last minute night out, and oh, oh, YEAH YOU GOT IT IN ONE – an inconceivably slim ‘plus size’ model. Their selection of girls for their +18-28 range was commendable, but it what have we learned today? It wouldn’t be a plus size range without an absolute corker of a skinny bitch in there would it. As promised, here she is. Probably a creative who sips skinny capps while painting on her balcony WEARING SIZE 12 CLOTHING:

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Food for thought, women of the world. Before this post gets completely misconstrued and I get trolled for hating on plus size women, that’s totally not what this is about. It’s about retailers supposedly supporting positive body image by providing a plus size range, and then totally wrecking it by using models that fit a size that the range doesn’t even carry. Sort it out!

Love (and now probably doughnuts) always,

Coco x

That Weirdo With Five Colours In Her Hair

Oh hey! Hope everyone has survived the random storm that hit the UK earlier this afternoon! In classic British style we have gone from waking up in muggy, greenhouse-like conditions, to welcoming a thick black cloud of doom, which soon erupted in some of the most violent thunder, lightening and hailstones I have seen in quite some time. Now, like I said, we did this in our classic British way, so you can imagine what the weather is doing now two hours later? Yep, you got it. Glorious sunshine. What are you gonna do! Its a nightmare for fashion, this weather, I tell you. I left for work yesterday at 4pm, in a tshirt, jeans and runners. After a gruelling 7 hours I emerged just before midnight to be greeted by what first appeared to be the Grand Canyon. But it was in fact, Oxford Street after a rain storm. Considering my options on how to get home, canoe being a legitimate contender, I opted to paddle to the tube, my white tshirt now soaked through, and I looked like I belonged on Daytona Beach partaking in the yank tradition of “Spring Break woohoo”. Anyway, the point of that was just a weather moan. Its so temperamental this time of year!

But hey, enough of that. We have certainly had a very decent chunk of sun so far this year, so I really shouldn’t be complaining. It has prompted the high street to stack its shelves high with floral headbands and adorable accessories. I went into Topshop yesterday (though I had my head firmly in a no-spending mood, as my finances are still dealing with the post-Australia hangover), and came across their range of amazing flower garlands. You know the ones, that sort of sit on your head so you have to not move too much when wearing one. I tried one on, with a very sheepish look on my face as I felt I was being judged by onlookers (I have a confidence complex with things like that. I don’t dare to be daring all that often!), but I actually fell in love with it! Now, i’m not saying they’re ideal for every day wear, but with a maxi dress, or loose tee and denim hot pants on the beach or on holiday, they’re amazing! Yes, they’re hideously over the top, and probably too big for some people’s liking, but I’m seriously hoping these take off in the fashion stakes, and I want one BADLY! My birthday is coming up so, fingers crossed! (yes, my TWENTY THIRD birthday. Don’t. Just. Don’t.)

Here are some of my favourites!

1. Rose and Lily Garland, £16

2. Lilac Garland, £16

3. Daisy Garland, £14

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I’m hoping I don’t get weird looks when I step out wearing mine! Reactions to follow 😉

Ciao

Coco xx

 

Bond Girl

Hey guys, hope everybody is enjoying the sunshine as much as I am! Life is just that little bit brighter when the sun is shining. The endless summer evenings make the days seem far longer, rather than waking up in darkness and leaving work in darkness, trudging home losing yourself in the sofa cushions until the end of time, aka the British winter.

Today I am hounding you with yet another plug of an Aussie brand that I fell in love with, called BONDS (and I expect you’re now nodding your head as you now understand the pun embedded in the title of this post). I was introduced to it for the first time when I saw the name sprawled across the waistline of my boyfriend’s boxers, and concluded that it was the laid back, Aussie surfer equivalent of having Calvin Klein peeping out the back of your jeans, rather than an advert for Australia’s investment yield prospects (the finance geeks reading this will appreciate). This was until my visit to Australia, when I spotted an entire store filled with underwear, sleepwear and sportswear, for men AND women. It has a Nike/Sweaty Betty/Victoria’s Secret Sports feel to it, and has uplifting summer prints and bright colours available, as well as more plain options. Cool workout gear is hot for 2014, and this brand is packed with ideas. I grabbed a bra (with the bonds logo not-so-subtly plastered around the underbust, an adorable palm print bandeau also sporting the logo, and some grey sweatpants that are so comfy I have had to actually talk myself into letting them go in the wash as I’ve been living in them. I’m already having withdrawals.

Anyway, as always, I’ve chosen some of my favourite bits from the site, and even better, they now deliver to the UK, AND its free deliver over $100AUD (thats only about £50, so go nuts!).

1. Wide waistband jungle line print briefs, $17.95AUD

2. Low rise shorts, $16.95AUD

3. Logo Sweatpants, $49.95AUD

4. Active leggings, $49.95AUD (I wanted these SO badly to wear with my pink Nike Free Runs…cry!)

5. Tube Bra, $39.95AUD

6. Neon print g-string, $14.95AUD

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Enjoy, Bond Girls!

As always,

Coco xx

 

Sabo Skirt

Hey all,

For those who read my recent post, you’ll know I recently returned from Australia. (Yes I still have post holiday blues, so I’m using this time to blog about it!) Now, as a true Brit, as much as I love travelling and seeing other countries, there are very few places in the world that can keep up with us in the fashion stakes. Even my favourite cities in the world, Barcelona and New York, just, to me, don’t quite do fashion the same as us. It always seems a bit dated or under staged, so visiting the land downunder, I had very low expectations in terms of what I would find in terms of new threads.

Now, in fairness, with their season being opposite to ours, it was coming into Autumn when I arrived, so their stores were laden with chunky scarves, boots and parkas (for the weather that they supposedly classify as ‘cold’. *laughs*). It was hardly the right thing I was looking for since I was returning to the UK in May, and looking at the prospect of lighter evenings, summer BBQs, beach days, flip flops and shorts. However, I was introduced to a site called Sabo Skirt << follow the link. At first I was sceptical, but I have fallen in love with just about every item on there. To be totally fair, the Aussies know their summers, and I think had I visited at peak season, I might have been woo’d more by their styles. Sabo Skirt has the most gorgeous range of summer clothes you’ve ever seen, and its all a bit different and unique – quite different to what you’d come across here in the UK. They do offer international shipping, so I’m torn between forking out for that or ordering it to my boyfriend’s house and having him bring it over to me when he visits in the summer!

I’ve selected a few of my real favourite pieces, but definitely check the site out yourself, or follow them on Instagram – their stuff is to die for! I think its actually quite reasonably priced too, once you calculate the AUD exchange rate, which I have kindly done for you, for a bit of perspective 😉 Happy drooling!

1. Floral shorts, $42 AUD (about £21)

2. Bubblegum shorts, $45 AUD (about £22.50)

3. Crochet Dress, $68 AUD (about £34)

4. Sunflower Waistcoat, $29 AUD (about £14.50 – bargain!)

5. Pastel Bralet, $21 AUD (about £10.50)

6. Denim Dungarees, $62 (about £31)

7. White Maxi, $62 AUD (about £31)

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Its $10 for international shipping that takes 5-15 business days, which equates to about £5, so its really quite decent compared to UK shipping costs, but in my experience, give the Australian post extra time. If you thought Royal Mail was bad, you aint seen nothing, so don’t hold your breath for your parcel to arrive in an instant!

Hope you love the site as much as I do! Let me know if you snap anything up!

Love always,

Coco

 

 

£3 Perfume!

Today was my day off after working 6 days in a row, including two double shifts, so I was super duper excited to do some shopping! Thursday nights are also our payday, so I usually spend Wednesday jumping the gun on what I expect my wages to be, and splurging cash I don’t even have yet 😉 Thank you Master Card!

Anyway, I am going to do a full post on my purchases from today, but this one item needs its own post because I am still totally baffled by it. We were walking through the high street and spotted a market stall selling nail polish for £1, so we decided to have a rummage. You know. Anything for a barg. On the stall I also spotted some pseudo designer perfumes, with some very familiar packaging, so I sort of snorted in a condescending manor at the stall owner and went over for a sniff, expecting fragrances that mimic my cat’s urine. Well. I picked up the white and gold box with MISS TUTU printed on it, smirked and thought, oh right, so this is supposed to be Coco Mademoiselle by Chanel is it, which I have in my collection and paid about €50 for. I sprayed it and could not believe it. It smells so similar! It is slightly sweeter, but for £3, I really was blown away. Now I’m not suggesting you boycot Chanel and go for this. No. Not by any stretch of the imagination. But I snapped one up for things like throwing in your handbag, taking on a night out or in an overnight bag, to a festival, on holiday….basically anywhere that you might risk losing your bottle of the good stuff. They had other fraudy fragrances there too, but I wasn’t familiar with any of the originals so I wasn’t sure how strong their resemblance were, but this one was actually really good. At £3 for 50ml, anything that doesn’t smell like wee is a bonus really! I looked up the ingredients of both, and the vanilla base notes are mirrored in the Miss Tutu copy, as are the extracts of jasmine and rose, making it a fab bargain copy cat!

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C x

High Street Haul

Hello Monday. Its you again! Now, Monday doesn’t represent the same meaning for me as for most of the working world, but I still feel the need to address it. Monday for me is actually more of a relief, as it means the busy weekend period is over. Yep, you guessed it, I work in a pub. Monday brings with it an air of relaxation, quieter evenings, and less hungry diners to serve. But still, it is still the first day of a new week, and how better to commence it (especially when its the first of the month as well), than with some new purchases. Now, in an ideal world I would have gone out today and raided the shelves of Zara and the premium cosmetics counters in House of Fraser, but sadly my finances disagreed with that plan. So I set myself a challenge to pick up some new buys on a budget.

Here’s what I snapped up!

I finally managed to grab the Sleek blush in Rose Gold today, which I have been checking Superdrug for for months! It was ALWAYS sold out, but today I snapped up the last one!!!! Pretty smug I must say. I heard about Sleek products from my fave makeup vlogger Tanya Burr, and this one has great gold shimmery tones (great for summer) amidst a gorgeous pinky shade. Can’t wait to try it!

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I also purchased some MUA products, as they are so unbelievably cheap and are actually pretty good. I had heard great things about the Undressed eyeshadow palette, which contains browns and golds – great for brown eyed girls like me! I went for the new version called Undress Me Too.

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I got a MUA lipstick to add to my growing collection in shade 07. It was £1 so obviously I’m not expecting Chanel standards, but its worth a shot!

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A shopping trip wouldn’t end with just one lipstick purchase either! I took advantage of No.7’s great vouchers (£3 off makeup), and got this Stay Perfect Lip Colour in shade Coral Rose. It feels really silky on my hand so I can’t wait to try it out. I think it’l be coming to work with me tonight!

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Also from the MUA range, I took a gamble and got this £5 Pro Base Fixing Mist, which is supposed to hold your makeup in place all day long, protecting against wind and humidity. As a person who seems to shed any trace of makeup within hours, I thought I’d give it a go. Especially as the pub has recently become a sauna, resulting in us girls sweating under our black uniforms for 6 hours a day!

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I have wanted an eyebrow kit for ages. Preferably the HD Brows Kit, but I just didn’t have the dollar for that at the moment. I went for one of the Fashionista range (at Superdrug), which was £7 and contains mini tweezers, a brush, a gel wax setter and three colours.

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A picked up this super cute bag from H&M for £14.99, as I thought it was really versatile. It can be a clutch bag or a shoulder bag (great for day and night) and was a really nice neutral shade. It also comes in black, which was what I was going to go for, but I spotted this one and changed my mind. Also, but of an OOTD plug – my top is from Zara and my jeans are the Joni jeans from Topshop.

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If you’ve read my blog before, I’m sure you’ll know how obsessed I am with camis. I scooped up this plain black one for £5 in Primark as a little summer wardrobe staple. I also have it in white with black edging. Great bargain! The straps are a little long for me but I just tied tiny knots in the back and it was perfect!

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I must admit I splurged on this item – the Mango Body Scrub from The Body Shop. I was hoping they were still doing their 40% off, but when I discovered they hadn’t I couldn’t put the scrub down, it just smells so good!! I just finished my Soap and Glory Scrub, which I love, so this has a lot to live up to. I have the Mango Beautifying Body Oil too, though, so I’m sure this will live up to my expectations!

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Last but not least, I saw New Look had some great offers on basics, and I bought this red bandeau top for £2!!! Amazing! If you’re a crop top worshipper (which I most certainly am NOT due to my lack of abs), they had some great bits too, for around £2 – £4. Go on, go and make me jealous and flaunt your toned tums in those!!!

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Reviews of all these to come!

Have a great week!

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Sale Jewellery Haul

I have to admit, jewellery isn’t something I dedicate a massive amount of money to, mainly because it either breaks, or I misplace it, or it gets all tangled up in a draw and I can’t wear it anymore. Which is why, as soon as the sales start, I start to seek out some statement items. I’d say the majority of my statement necklaces have been purchased in the sale. Today I picked up some bits in Miss Selfridge and Topshop:

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Necklace 1: £6 Miss Selfridge

Necklace 2: £2 Miss Selfridge

Necklace 3: £6 Miss Selfridge

Rings: £3 each Topshop

I can’t wait to wear these with shirts or slouchy tee’s!

Over and out

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Desperate to try….

So, every time I visit my FAVOURITE beauty store, either in store or online, my beauty wishlist just quadruples in length, and this is one product I have had my eye on a while, and its in the sale. So tempted! Its the By Terry Skin Colour Enhancer. £64 down to £32 is an absolute bargain, but I already have so many skin potions, I really can’t quite justify it without being sure!

It has subtle colour graduation and plumps the skin, refreshing it with the smooth radiance of a good night’s sleep (which is something I often need to fake these days, working late nights at the pub!). It comes in a range of colours, but I’m unsure which one to purchase, so if anyone has tried this or has any info, please do let me know! I really think it could be a winner, as lately I have looked in the mirror many times hoping to see glowing summer skin, but being greeted by a dull, tired looking complexion. Im wondering if this could be the answer to my prayers….?

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I also spotted the SKEEN Revitalizing Serum, said to have similar benefits. £72 down to £37 – another amazing saving. This one is packed with vitamins and antioxidants to promote skin renewal, so I can imagine how great it really is for your skin on the inside. Its whether this translates on the outside. Im wondering if what I want actually exists, or whether its just my face!!

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I nearly peed with excitement when I spotted the JEMMA KIDD i-Rescue Bio Correct Cover for £5, but sadly the light and medium were both out of stock (sad face). I need to invest in something for the eye area, so suggestions are welcome!!

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Leighton Denny Nails. Confessions of a Polish-aholic

Today I was lucky enough to receive a belated birthday present in the mail (don’t you just love it when that happens!). It was the Leighton Denny Travel Collection, and contains three full sized polishes, a dual ended manicure set, hand cream, accetone free nail polish remover, a glass nail file and a slick tips pen, for nourishing nails on the go.

I have to say I am extremely impressed with the products, and would definitely purchase others in the range. I find that nail polish is a cosmetics item that really warrants premium brand purchases, as the quality is just so dramatically better. These polishes are quick drying and the colours are great. The three included are I Love Juicy, Spring Fling, and Keep it Light. I was at first a little dubious as two of the three had shimmer in, which I am usually opposed to as it can look tacky, but these look really cute and subtle.

The hand cream is really nourishing and improves the appearance of your hands too, as well as making them soft and smooth – absolutely essential for my poor waitress hands!! As is the quick tips nourishing stick, packed with vitamins to nourish your nails. Again, perfect for my waitress hands and tired nails! The manicure stick is ideal as we’re not supposed to wear polish, but being a complete obsessive, I sometimes try and get away with a really light colour, if I can!

The set is available to buy online from QVC here for just £32.98, or Look Fantastic sell their products too. This is a new nail brand to my 96 strong polish collection, and think it might be up there as a fave with Essie!!

Here is a quick snap of the I Love Juicy shade I’ve just slicked on. You can even get away with just one coat if you’re in a rush. This shown was one coat plus my trusty No.7 top coat. I am never without it!

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Snap some up asap!!! Highly recommended!!!

Night all

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The Fashion Blogger’s Guide to the Galaxy

Oh hi again. I know right, back so soon. What can I say, I’m feeling inspired. And in the world of writing, when you feel inspired, just run with it, before you get hit with a bout of writers block and you can’t string together a McDonald’s order let alone a fashion post.

So the topic of today’s talk is GALAXY. No, not the smooth, silky, dreamy, marriage worthy chocolate bar, the print! Unless you’ve been living in some sorry, fashion deprived location like Cornwall (sorry Cornwallers for the generalisation) for the past year or so, you will have seen galaxy prints are everywhere. Now, while I am a lover of the print, in some places it has admittedly gone too far. Yes I am talking about Missguided.com. If you type ‘galaxy’ into their search bar, you get rows and rows of different dress styles, leggings, shirts, trousers, t-shirts, crop tops….pretty much every piece of clothing that has ever been worn can be purchased in galaxy print from these guys. Don’t get me wrong, theyre great, some real bargains and designer inspired bits, but there is just SO much on there I eventually get bored of trawling through (Asos take note. You’re overwhelming me too!).

Now, Christopher Kane has been one of my favourite designers for years now, and unsurprisingly, this guy nailed galaxy prints in 2011. Dresses, jumpsuits and tank tops were all made in the galaxy prints, and they look amazing. The print looks great in silk, but his galaxy dresses will set you back over £1000, and the tops well into the hundreds, and there are so many on the high street now, you needn’t pay these price tags!

For trends like galaxy, your best bet is to hit the online fashion retailers, like asos, boohoo.com, fashion union, own the runway, and missguided, as they generally have more choice and variation.

Here are some summer friendly, galaxy printed picks i’ve sniffed out:

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This cute shirt is £17.99 from OwntheRunway.com

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This playsuit is £38 by Sparkle and Fade at Urban Outfitters

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This chiffon shirt with leather collar is just £12.59 from Missguided.com

I hope you have enjoyed my guide to the galaxy. I’m not a hitch hiker, I’m just a blogger 😉

Ta ta

Coco x