At the start of the month I wrote a blog post about shopping sustainably and how and why I'm doing it. Along with buying second hand clothes, and selling on my unwanted clothes, I've also started 'shopping my own wardrobe' a lot more too.

"What on earth is shopping your own wardrobe?" I hear you say! Well to me it's basically digging out those pieces you haven't worn in forever and giving them a new lease of life! For me it also means actually wearing the clothes which have been sat in my wardrobe with the tags on for months, oops!

Full length shot wearing a white tshirt and a black midi skirt
Close up of tshirt and embroidered detail which reads ''love is enough''

This t-shirt is actually one of those items. I bought it forever ago when H&M released their William Morris collection as I just had to have something from the collection and most of it was too long on me! It's actually a pretty gorgeous embroidered top that I just haven't really wanted to wear yet?

Well I finally styled it up with this pretty midi skirt from Asos and honestly I love the look. I liked it so much that I just had to head out to the park to get some snappy snaps of the outfit. Actually the first person I passed at the park stopped me to say she loved what I was wearing! That doesn't happen very often to me and it honestly made my day!


Half body shot of the outfit showing my head down to my waist
Close up of black leather handbag

Apart from the skirt, which I admit is new (but it has pockets, come on!) every other part of my outfit is pretty damn old. But they don't feel like old pieces to me, because I've mixed in a new item and an item I haven't worn before!

So how else can you 'shop your own wardrobe'? Well a fun way to mix things up is by getting a little crafty. I'm forever chopping up t-shirts to make them slightly cropped, which not only makes them look better on my short arse body, but also gives them a completely new vibe! In the past I've also dyed older clothes new colours and ripped jeans that were already on their way out. There's no end to the kind of things you can do to your old clothes to make them feel new again!


- Shop the look -
(or shop your own wardrobe for the look if you can!)
Shopping sustainably, and reusing clothes as much as possible is something I'm really going to make an effort to do in the coming months because it just makes sense!

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SHOPPING MY OWN WARDROBE

Finding a decent makeup remover seems to be a bit of a battle at the moment. The last few removers I've used have not been worth the packaging they came in, and I was seriously considering investing in some high end products as they never let me down.


But the cheap bitch in me resisted and so I bought the Nivea Double Effect Eye Makeup Remover instead. Rated as the UK's number one eye makeup remover I thought it was well worth putting to the test. 


So here are my thoughts on the Nivea Double Effect Eye Makeup Remover...


One of the main reasons I picked this product up is because its an affordable oil based makeup remover. I've tried oil based removers before and they've always done a fantastic job of clearing off my stubborn eye makeup. That being said, they have usually been higher end products from the likes of Clinique ect. so I was curious to see if a cheaper product could do the same job.

Well I wasn't disappointed. Although the makeup remover didn't quite give the same results as my beloved Clinique Take The Day Off Makeup Remover (which was gifted to me last year), it did do a cracking job considering the price difference.




My favourite Clinique product comes in at a hefty £19 for 125ml, whereas the Nivea Makeup Remover costs roughly £4 for the same amount. That's a serious price difference. Granted there are likely to be more costly ingredients in the Clinique product, and I will admit it is also the superior product, however the Nivea product is an effective and affordable makeup remover for the price.

I've also found the makeup remover solution to be gentle on my skin which is always a concern when using products around the eyes. Also for anyone concerned about using an oil based makeup remover on their face, it doesn't really leave an oily residue after using and I don't think it affected the amount of natural oils my face produced day to day either.

So would I repurchase the Nivea Double Effect Eye Makeup Remover? It's a resounding yes

☆☆☆☆

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NIVEA DOUBLE EFFECT EYE MAKEUP REMOVER - REVIEW

View from airplane window

When will lockdown end? It's a question I'm hearing a lot lately, and whilst I personally believe the lockdown should continue for a little longer, I too am dreaming of the day this nightmare ends and all is well in the world again.


Now it should be no surprise to any regular readers that I'm already saving for, and planning my post lockdown trips, after all that's all I do, but where would I recommend budding travellers venture next when it's safe to do so?


Photo of the town of Amalfi and the ocean
Amalfi, Italy

Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast may be one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen. The towns and cities that line this amazing stretch of land can be found hanging from the cliffs in such a way it's hard to believe they haven't yet fallen into the ocean. The coastline is around 25 miles long and can be easily accessed by both car, bus, and boat, though I'd strongly recommend the latter as it's usually quicker to hop between towns this way.

The most popular towns in the area, Amalfi and Positano are breathtakingly stunning however you will pay a high price to wake up to those views. If you're on a budget it might be worth staying in a cheaper area such an Salerno and taking a day trip to the towns which are surprisingly affordable to shop and eat in.

Top tip: If you're planning a day trip to the towns make sure you take swimwear. It will be hard to resist a dip in the ocean if you travel there in the summer months.


Shoes on the Danube memorial with Budapest in the background
Shoes on the Danube, Budapest, Hungary

Budapest

Budapest is another one of those stunning places that will forever hold a space in my heart. The Hungarian capital features some incredible history as well as a whole host of more modern culture. It's also very affordable to stay and play in central Budapest as they don't yet use the Euro.

The city, which is spilt by the Danube river has tonnes for tourists to do, however my top 5 'must sees' would be; Margaret Island and the dancing fountain show, Buda Castle Labyrinth, The Hospital in the Rock, Gellert Hill, and Szechenyi Spa Baths (obviously).

Top tip: It's very easy to walk around Budapest however you can rent street bikes (similar to the London Boris bikes) for free for 30 minutes if you would like to get around a little quicker.


Lindos town amongst the trees
Lindos, Rhodes


Lindos

Lindos, the poor man's Santorini. This small whitewashed town can be found on the Greek island of Rhodes. The brilliant white buildings of Lindos stand no taller than an average UK house however they can be seen for miles against the contrasting brown and green landscape.

From sunbathing on the beautiful beaches to taking in the views from roof top tavernas, you'll find tonnes of relaxing things to do in this island town. If culture is your thing, why not visit the Acropolis on the hill, or the beautifully decorated Church of Panagia? If you're a woman you will likely be asked to cover your legs and shoulders with blankets whilst visiting the church, but believe me,you won't see a anything quite like this anywhere else so grin and bear it.

Top tip: Whilst taking a dip in the sea bring bread with you and you'll soon be surrounded by all types of ocean wildlife.


One of the canals in Gdansk City centre
Gdansk, Poland

Gdansk

Gdansk, the Amsterdam of Poland. But don't let that description put you off because you won't find any of the activities that make the capital of the Netherlands so popular here. You will however find rows and rows of houses built in the traditional Dutch style thanks to the Dutch architects who settled in Gdansk after fleeing from the Spanish inquisition.

Although the buildings really are a sight to see the city has much more to offer. Alongside the history (of which there is plenty) in the summer months you might also enjoy a trip to one of the many beaches just outside the city which can easily be reached by tram. 

Top tip: You can't visit Gdansk without taking a day trip to Malbork Castle. The castle is the largest brick castle in the world and only around a hour away by train. 


Inside the Alcazaba in Malaga
Inside the Alcazaba, Malaga, Spain

Malaga

Malaga might seem like your typical Brits abroad destination but I promise it is so much more than that. In the summer you'll find the Spanish city bustling with tourists and the beaches packed to the brim, so whilst in theory this is the best time to visit, I would recommend visiting out of season for a more relaxed break.

You'll find lots to do in Malaga however my top 5 things would be; explore the Alcazaba and Gibralfaro complex, visit the Cathedral, take a walking tour of the city, visit the beach (even in January we found it warm enough to paddle), watch a flamenco show (although I didn't get chance to do that myself).

Top tip: It usually costs to visit Malaga Cathedral however it is free to visit during Sunday mass. This doesn't mean you have to sit down and watch the ceremony, you are free to wander most of the cathedral whilst it goes on in the background. 



So those were the European destinations I would recommend visiting once lockdown is over and it's safe to do so! 

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5 EUROPEAN DESTINATIONS TO VISIT ONCE LOCKDOWN IS OVER

I've loved vintage fashion for years. There's just something satisfying about wearing unique, high quality pieces of clothing that you didn't pick up in your local primark. As kids we would always be mooching through charity shops and car boot sales for treats and while I was embarrassed about that when I was younger, it's something I've learnt to embrace over the years.


What baby Grace didn't know when she was younger, was that second hand fashion would become extremely popular and even encouraged as more and more people started to understand the effects fast fashion has on the world. If you'd have told me rummaging through Cancer Research with my Nan would be in the 'in thing' when I was a teenager I would have never believed you, but here we are.

WHY I'M PAYING MORE ATTENTION TO SUSTAINABLE FASHION


So why am I paying more attention to sustainable fashion? It comes down to a few reasons really. The fast fashion industry has been my friend for a really long time. I loved the days I could nip into Primark and come out with a whole outfit for a tenner, and whilst I won't be giving up that kind of shopping completely I am trying to reduce it. 

One of the big reasons is the environmental impact. A quick google search will throw up hundreds of articles based around the impact the fashion industry has on our planet, and the stats are pretty shocking to say the least. According to an article on the Business Insider, the fashion industry accounts for 10% of our carbon emissions. And if that doesn't concern you, the fact that 85% of textiles end up in a landfill should - thats a lot of clothes.

I would highly recommend giving that article 5 minutes of your time because the data will likely take you by surprise. I know it shocked me. 

For me there are also a couple of less important reasons for moving away from fast fashion. One is the cost. Second hand clothes in general are a lot cheaper than buying brand new, unless you specifically go to a vintage store of course. Older clothes are generally a lot better quality too and will also last much longer. Things were just made to last back in the day.

WHY I'M PAYING MORE ATTENTION TO SUSTAINABLE FASHION


I would say the last reason, and the most important reason for me, after the environmental cost, would be having something unique. When you buy vintage or second hand, it's likely that you will have something no one else does. I can't even count the amount of second hand bags I've bought and loved over the years that I know no one else will have.

So apart from buying second hand, what else am I doing to embrace sustainable fashion? Well I won't be giving up my Primark trips, or Asos orders anytime soon, but I will reduce the amount I purchase 'just because it's cheap'. Too many times I've picked up a bag full of items I didn't really need just because I could, and I'd never even wear them! 

I also recycle my own clothes and bags when I can. I send a fair amount of stuff to charity shops and I also sell on a lot of my older things too, because ya girl has to fund her habits someway. Sometimes things are too worn to donate to charities to resell, however a lot of my local charity shops use a scheme where they can sell things on as rags, so it's always worth asking your local shop if they participate in a scheme like that so you don't even have to throw ripped or damaged clothes away.

Shopping sustainably is something I've been trying to get more into lately and I'd encourage anyone who is concerned about the environment to do the same. 

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WHY I'M PAYING MORE ATTENTION TO SUSTAINABLE FASHION

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