Berlin Haul: Zara, Topshop, Kiko

As promised, I have a mini fashion and makeup haul from my trip to Berlin earlier this month. Berlin is such an amazing place for fashion and I couldn't resist bringing back a few things with me.. 

Firstly my friends and I headed to the KaDeWe which is supposedly one of the best department stores in Europe. Personally I found that there was a lack of high street brands which you would find in Selfridges for example. Fortunately though, I found a Topshop section and this beauty of a dress in the sale (99 Euros down to 29!).

After that it was time for Zara. In our short trip I managed to visit both branches of the chain but preferred the selection in the store near Wittenbergplatz. The shirt I bought is one of the most 'corporate-looking' clothing items I own but my friends convinced me I could still pull it off at uni. The major plus of Zara is that it works out cheaper when you buy things abroad. I call it fashion-omics.        

I don't think the Kiko brand gets enough exposure in the UK but I'm in love with their nail varnishes - I nearly walked out with all of them! This bronze cream eyeshow pencil reminds me of the Clinique Chubby sticks and it was a fraction of the price - I'll be buying more when I go to Rome over Easter!  

Finally, no tourist can leave Germany without something sweet. Ritter Sport Marzipan is my family's favourite chocolate so it's a little token for them when I go home this weekend. 

Have you ever been shopping in Berlin?


Berlin Berlin Berlin

Apologies for the lack of posts this month, February has been more hectic than I planned and TMA has unfortunately had to come second! From Sunday to Thursday I was on a 4 day trip to Berlin with the German society and I can honestly say all the planning and stressing paid off. Despite some of the drama, it was one of my favourite city breaks and I can't wait to explore more of Germany next year on my year abroad!

Day One - Travel
We flew from Heathrow to Berlin Tegel airport and proceeded to take what felt like five million different U-Bahns to get to Weberweise Station. On the first evening we went to the Brauhaus Lembke restaurant which served traditional German food and beer - I was very happy with my Radler (half beer, half lemonade) and Flammkuche (thin tart with creme fraiche and toppings). Unfortunately upon our return to our hostel we were devastated to find out that two of the group's rooms had been broken into and a few visible gadgets had been taken. It was no fault of the victims however we've all learned from this only to take expensive items abroad if it's absolutely necessary. Our hostel dealt with the situation very poorly but in many hostel accommodations there will be safes to store valuables in. Luckily the three group members affected handled the shock very well and I'm hoping they managed to enjoy the rest of the trip!  

Day Two - Walking Tour and Bar Crawl
On the second day we were up early for a 10am walking tour - I'd definitely recommend doing this as you learn so much about the history of Berlin and you can get ideas about where to go during the rest of your city break. For lunch we went to a gorgeous Italian restaurant on Friedrichstrasse and after dinner we went on a group bar crawl. 

 Day Three - Tiergarten and Hofbrauhaus 

On day three my friend and I sneakily broke off from the group and took a trip to the Tiergarten - mistaking the park for the Berlin zoo, we were slightly disappointed.. For future reference, the correct U-Bahn station is the Zoologischer Garten! In the evening we went to the Berlin Hofbrauhaus and then an Absinth bar. 

Day Four - East Side Gallery, KaDeWe and Matrix

This was definitely my favourite day of the tour, we started the day at the Berlin East Side Gallery which was absolutely amazing! The artwork is phenomenal and a must-see for any art lover. This was followed by a cheeky trip to the KaDeWe, one of the best department stores in Europe - a haul may be posted soon.. Afterwards we headed off to the Bundestag where we learnt a little about the German Houses of Parliament - we were gutted that Mrs Merkel was away in Russia at the time. Finishing on a high note, we went to a really cool pasta restaurant called Vapiano and our final night out was spent at a club called Matrix. The next morning was a challenge.

 Have you ever been to Berlin? Is there anywhere you'd recommend?


January Beauty Favourites

I'm jumping on the monthly beauty favourites bandwagon today as I've been really enjoying certain products and I love reading this types of post. Getting the usual 'I can't believe it's already February 2015' intro out of the way, I'm really looking forward to February - I'm going on a tour to Berlin, going to a George Ezra concert and attending a fancy formal event at uni. I'm planning to write as many posts as I can this month - the best way to keep up with my posts is Twitter, Facebook or Bloglovin (cheeky social media plug there). Here are my favourites and a mini review of each product.

  • Starting off with the slightly covered Elle magazine featuring my favourite living icon Keira Knightley. It comes with a free Benefit Roller Lash mascara which I am hoping to review soon. Snap up your copy before they sell out!
  • Philosophy is a new brand to me and I was delighted to receive a gift set for Christmas with three of their most popular shower gels. This one is Melon Daiquiri and smells divine - like having your own little cocktail party in the shower; weird but great!
  • I've mentioned my love of Clarins skincare in my recent post here, the One step Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser is fantastic as a gentle scrub, I feel it's effective without being too harsh. Big thumbs up from me!
  • Topshop Lipticks are one of my few favourites in general. They rival Mac lipsticks in quality, finish and colour selection. This gorgeous fuschia pink is called Fast Lane and it reminds me a lot of the Mac colour Girl About Town. 
  • The Estee Lauder Nail Varnish is a matte shade called Diva Moment.  I didn't know it was matte when I bought it but the finish is really interesting and unusual, I've worn it more than I expected to and navy's a great colour to liven up a monochrome outfit.
  • The Benefit Hoola Bronzer is a cult beauty classic and it's become an essential step in my everyday makeup routine. My friends all love this product as this matte bronzer gives a subtle glow without going overboard. 
  • Finally the L'Occitane Shea Butter lip balm is lovely at moisturizing the lips, especially in this cold weather. It lives in my uni bag and is applied at any opportunity!

I hope you enjoyed my favourites post, what beauty items have you been loving this year so far? Have you tried anything I've featured?