Swans, there’s only two days left till December. We repeat, only two days left! You’ve been roped into Secret Santa again this year and of course you’ve landed the most difficult person to shop for. With Christmas just around the corner and the panic slowly setting in, it’s time to get shopping. But how do you find the perfect gift while sticking to a budget? Easy, follow this guide to win at Christmas gift giving this festive season!
The Beauty Addict
We all have one member of our friendship group that can’t leave the house without their winged eyeliner looking sharp and contouring on point. Naturally, makeup is the ideal gift for them and luckily for you, we have a whole range of budget-friendly products for you to choose from. Any beauty addict will tell you that highlighter is not optional, it’s a necessity. Our Technic Strobe 'N' Glow Highlight Powder set will have your friend glowing like a Goddess for only £9.99! If mascara is her go-to makeup item, the W7 Spring Time Mascara needs to be added to their gift list. It’s available in three different brush sizes and at just £3.29 a wand, you can buy the whole collection with budget to spare! The W7 Let’s Go eyeshadow palettes are the perfect quads to add to this gift bag. With four different colourways to choose from at £3.99 each you’ll want to buy extra for yourself! There’s nothing like a good lippy to finish off the look and the W7 Mega Matte Liquid Lipstick set is perfect for ladies who love lip colours as bold as their personality. And the best part? It’s only £6.99!
The Handbag Fanatic
Ah the handbag fanatic, there’s always one in every squad. She’s the person who has a handbag to match every outfit she owns, so what in the world should you buy for her this Christmas? Whilst her collection may be huge, it can’t be complete if it’s missing some Swanky handbags! Our Olivia Reverse Check Tote comes in a choice of three chic colourways and at only £19.99, it could be a fabulous addition for her collection. Another beautiful bag to consider this holiday season is the Carla Smart Work bag, available in six different colourways for only £17.99! With colours ranging from pastel pink to classic black, you’re sure to find something for even the pickiest person on your list. The stylish Bonn Cosmo Shoulder bag is our favourite must-have this season. This versatile beauty comes with enough space to hold a laptop and at only £22.50, the most difficult decision you’ll have to make is choosing which colourway to go for!
The Clutch Collector
You’re almost ready for girls’ night but you’re missing a clutch bag to match your outfit. You call the one person in your group that can help… your clutch-collecting bestie! So what better gift to get her this Christmas than one of our stunning Swanky clutch bags? Our Vivian Clutch bag is a beautiful choice for any clutch lover, it’s available in four dazzling colourways and at only £12.99, it’s the ideal gift for Christmas! Our Chantel Satin Clutch bag had to be on this list too. It’s available in a range of elegant colours from burgundy to black and priced under £10 - you can buy more than one without having to break the bank! Get your shades on for this one Swans, it’s bright… Our 80s-inspired Tania Clutch bag comes in colourways ranging from bright orange to neon yellow, making it a must-have for any colour fanatic. At only £10.99, they’re budget friendly and will definitely win you some Christmas brownie points!
And that's how you shop for fabulous Christmas gifts on a budget! We hope this guide has helped, Swans. And remember, if you’re ordering from us for the first time, you can use the code ‘15OFF’ at checkout and claim 15% off your first order. Better hurry while stocks last!
Decorations are appearing everywhere, shopping centres have become busier and searches for online “gift guides” have suddenly spiked. This can mean only one thing… Christmas is coming! Are you struggling with gift inspiration? Don’t stress, we’re here to help. We’ve combed through our fabulous product ranges and packed our gift guide with the perfect ideas to satisfy even the pickiest individuals on your present list! So sit back and relax while we do the hard work for you.
For the Business Buddy
We all have that one work colleague we just couldn’t be without. They’re there to lend a hand when the boss lands the massive project on us at the last minute and knows how to sort the paper jams and air con nightmares that come with working life. If you want to say a special thank you to that work hero, or you’ve got them in Secret Santa this year, then treat them to a gorgeous Bella Bird Wallet in Mint Green at just £9.99. That’ll be another year of office help in the bag!
For the Trendy Sister
Sisters, where would we be without them? Although they steal your clothes, fight with you and generally annoy you no end, they’ll always be the best friend you can’t get rid of. Forget about any squabbles you may have this holiday season and treat your fashion-savvy sibling to our Tony Clutch bag. Whether she’s dressed to impress or keeping it casual, this versatile beauty adds the perfect touch to any outfit. Want to hear the best part? It’s only £12.50! With budget to spare, why not add a pair of Elena Knee High Boots to match? They’re on-trend and only £24.99! We’re positive your sister will only love you more for this perfect gift combination! And she may just stop stealing your stuff, till the end of January at least.
For the Yummy Mummy
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again Swans; mums deserve to feel stylish. The key to shopping for a yummy mummy is to keep functionality in mind – you can’t fit kid’s essentials in an envelope clutch bag! If you have a mum on your gift list, our Maple Butterfly Satchel is the perfect stylish solution for them to unwrap this Christmas! This vibrant print comes complete with multiple compartments to help separate kid’s necessities from mummy’s everyday items and all for only £19.99! If you really want to spoil them, add a pair of dazzling Betsy Sequin Trainers to the mix. Get the perfect combination of glamour and comfort for only £14.99!
For the BFF
You must be familiar with the phrase “friends are the family we choose,” and this is definitely true for your BFF. She’s the person you go to for everything. She’s your confidant, your therapist, your toughest critic and your biggest fan. The longer you’ve been best friends however, the harder it becomes to buy them the ideal gift. Score some serious BFF points this Christmas with our Ava Glitter Clutch (£12.50) and matching Diaz Stiletto Heels (£19.99).
For the Darling Daughter
You’ve taught her well and your daughter is now a bona fide fashionista, just like mum! Be one of those rare ‘cool parent’ types this Christmas by treating your princess to our gorgeous Gogo Faux Suede Ankle Books in Black for just £16.99. Comfortable, classy and bang on trend, you’ll be the epitome of Mother Knows Best! Team this footwear choice with the roomy, everyday Nina Reversible Tote Bag in Navy and Grey (£24.99) and you will have one very happy offspring!
So, there you have it. That’s our roundup of some low-cost, high impact Christmas gift giving. We’ll have you winning at Christmas shopping in no time! And remember, if you’re a brand new customer, you can use 15OFF at checkout, to claim 15% off your first order. Can we get the tree up now?
Halloween is the one time of year you can transform yourself into anything you want to be – that is of course if you can make a costume decision on time. Hands up if you’ve ever experienced the panic of trying to find a last-minute outfit. Every year we tell ourselves we’ll plan well in advance but let’s be honest, that never ends up happening.
It’s ok, we understand that it’s a difficult decision to make. It has to be better than last year’s but still be creative and simple enough to make at home. We don’t ask for much, do we? Naturally our first course of action is to get straight on Pinterest and search for anything we can use as inspiration. Well Swans, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve found some SPOOKtacular Halloween makeup looks for you this year. And the best part? They’re all budget friendly!
The ‘Walking Dead’ Zombie
Topical! The eighth season of this epic series has just begun airing so we’re feeling this look. This has to be one of our favourites for Halloween and while it may be simple to create, it requires a lot of DEADication to get right. If you’re as obsessed with ‘The Walking Dead’ as we are, this is definitely for you! All you’ll need to become one of the living dead is the W7 Smokin’ Shades Eye Colour Palette and the Technic Pro Finish Raspberry Eyeshadow Palette as well as some generic white face paint.
Start off by applying the white paint as a base colour to make your skin deathly pale. Now it’s time for shading! Use your eyeshadow palettes to apply colour around your temples, eyes and jaw line – it’s best to stick to dark, earthy shades for this step. Swans, the key to perfecting this look is blending! The last thing you want is to end up looking like a raccoon. Make sure you blend all colours evenly to hollow out your face enough without it turning into a skeleton mask!
The Classic Cat
People always complain about cat makeup being an easy way out of a costume dilemma; to them we say, what’s wrong with that? Simplicity often goes a long way and this look is definitely proof of that. Forever on trend and always affordable, this is a PURRfect last minute option! In order to become a fierce feline you’ll need the Amazing Shine False Eyelashes Style 138, the Royal Lashed Out Felt Pen, the W7 Smokin’ Shades Eye Colour palette and the Technic Nude Lip Liner Pencil.
Begin by creating a smoky eye – the key here is to blend like a boss - before moving on to your eyeliner. It’s time to wing it ladies. You’ll need a steady hand and strong focus for this stage – a single wrong movement could cause a CATastrophe to the rest of your look. Draw on your eyeliner using the Royal Lashed Out Pen starting with the wings and moving in and across your upper eyelid. Add a nose and whiskers using the same eyeliner pen and move on to fill your lips using the Technic Nude Lip Liner. Add a dash of drama to complete the look, apply your Amazing Shine lashes and you’re ready to go!
The Not-So-Wicked Witch
What do we love about this look? It’s simple, magical and so easy to create! While we’re no witch experts, we do know that witches don’t always have green faces – remember Sabrina? – so don’t worry if you don’t have a pot of green paint at hand for this one. All you’ll need to make this Halloween classic is the green Saffron Metallic Eye Pencil, the purple Saffron Metallic Eye Pencil, the Royal Lashed Out Black Eyeliner Pen, the Royal Lashed Out Dramaticeyes Mascara, the Technic Red Lip Liner and one resting witch face.
Start with the Saffron Metallic Eye Pencil in green and colour in the whole of your eyelids – we’re using this instead of eyeshadow to get a more dramatized shimmer. Now it’s time to add some sharp wings! If you struggle with symmetry, here’s a tip ladies: always start with the end of the wing and move inwards as it’s easier to mirror your eyeliner this way. Use the purple Saffron Metallic Eye Pencil under your waterline to make your eyes pop, then finish by using the Technic Liner to create a bold red lip. Bow down witches, you’re now party ready!
This all-time favourite has a pretty big fang club which we’re definitely a part of. You’ll need the W7 Face Shaping Contour Stix, the Technic Pro Finish Raspberry Palette, the W7 Strobe Time Shimmering Powder Kit, the Technic Eyeliner Pencil, the Technic Red Lip Liner Pencil and the Amazing Shine False Eyelashes Style 601 to create this FANGtastic look – we promise it’s simpler than it sounds.
Let’s begin by heavily contouring under your cheek bones, along the sides of your nose and around your forehead to make your facial features stand out and give you a more chiselled vampire-like appearance. In order to look completely deprived of sunlight, you’ll need to generously dust your lightest shade of shimmer powder across the highest points of your face – under the eyes, on top of cheekbones, across your chin, nose and forehead. Use the blood red shade from your eyeshadow palette over the whole of your eyelids before blending a little black onto the outer parts to create a simple smoky eye. Now Swans, we know that lashes are a real pain in the neck to apply – get it? – but this look will be incomplete without them so it’s time to apply yours. Finish off by lining your lips with black and applying red over to create a bloodstained look.
If you don’t have time to get an elaborate costume this Halloween these easy makeup tutorials are the answer to your prayers on this most terrifying of nights. The only question is, which one will you choose?
From carrying toiletries to keys, phones and even laptops… It’s safe to say that handbags have become an essential part of our lives. Do you remember the first handbag you ever purchased? It’s ok to admit that it may not have been your best choice. Your taste in handbags is like a fine wine, it can only get better over time. As we grow, we realise that handbags are not only great for their usefulness but they also play a vital role in our day-to-day style choices. But how do you go about pairing the right style of bag for the right occasion? We’ve created this style guide to help you out!
The Everyday Bag
Swans, you should use this handbag as a starting point as it’s definitely the foundation to your bag collection. When choosing your everyday bag, you’ll need to consider your daily load; do you have a substantial amount of errands to run? It’s important that you pick a style you feel comfortable carrying throughout the day and you should also make sure that it has enough room to spare for your everyday necessities too. Look for a bag that’s simple and stylish which will complement your more casual outfit choices, such as jeans and a plain white t-shirt. We recommend our Emma Multi Zip Crossbody Bag with multiple zip pockets which gives you separate sections to place your essentials into - meaning no more fumbling around awkwardly to look for your keys, ladies! Some of us prefer something with a single larger storage space instead of multiple compartments. Our Tasmania Tassel Shoulder Bag is a fabulous fit with only one zip and an open front pocket! It’s both simple and stylish and will match even the most casual of outfits.
The Office Wonder
As working women, we tend to spend a lot of time outside of the house so we’re sure you’ll agree that the bag we carry needs to match our boss-lady personalities. Whether you’re rocking a perfect pencil skirt or a pair of statement trousers for that all-important meeting, an office bag will add the finishing touch to your fabulous work ensemble. The Naples Cosmo City Bag in the burgundy colourway not only makes a bold fashion statement but also has enough space to hold your laptop – say goodbye to the ugly laptop case you’ve been forced to carry! Are you a fan of the classic Birkin handbag? If you answered yes to that question you’ll be sure to fall head over heels for our Bedford Handbag!
The Sightseeing Essential
The last thing you want to do while you’re travelling is carry around a big hefty handbag. When choosing your holiday bag you’ll need to start by making a list of all of your daily essentials. What will you need during the day? Sun cream, a water bottle, a camera, maybe a change of clothes… it won’t take much time before you realise that you’ll require something a little more spacious than you previously imagined, but spacious doesn’t have to equal bulky. Our Beau Backpack in grey is both fashion forward and functional. It’s twin adjustable back straps will help spread the weight out equally making it easier to carry while allowing you to keep your hands free for more important things – like two ice creams - and the multiple compartments will make sure your sun cream can’t spill and ruin your clothes unexpectedly.
The Evening Glam
Whether you’re off to a fancy formal event or you’re getting ready for a girls’ night out, evening bags are a must-have to complete your look. Choosing a bag which not only looks glamourous but is also big enough for your evening essentials can often leave you feeling like you’d rather stay in instead. Have you ever been in the position where you’ve found a bag which matches your outfit perfectly but you’re unable to fit anything inside it? The Karlie Suede Clutch Bag may be the solution to your problem. It’s chic and classic design allows it to be paired with a formal gown or an LBD for a night out, but the best part? You’ll have enough space to fit a large phone inside along with your makeup! If you’re looking for a showstopper with oodles of glitz, you’ll love our Kamila Clutch Bag! It still has the same space and stylishness but with added sparkle!
The One For The Yummy Mummy
As much as we all love a small handbag or a cute clutch, once you become a mum you need to upgrade to something a little bigger – OK, sometimes a lot bigger – to make room for everything your little darling needs. Don’t worry Swans, your bag will get smaller as your children get older but in the meanwhile this presents you with a fab opportunity to get the most gorgeous baby changing bag. Woohoo! A baby change bag is a necessity and has great functionality, but when it comes to fashion, they can often be found wanting. Well that’s not the case with our baby changing bags and we’ve found one particular gem that you’ll just love! Our Julie Kempton Day Bag is the stylish solution you need to end all of your changing bag nightmares. It has all the multiple compartments and storage space you’ll need without looking like a bulky crime against fashion!
There you have it Swans, our guide to buying the right bag for the right occasion. Hopefully it will help you the next time you find yourself stuck trying to decide!
We’re sure you agree Swans, that buying a new pair of shoes is definitely a blissful experience. From spotting your new found loves to adding them to your cart and then finally welcoming them into your ever-growing shoe collection. It’s a recipe for instant happiness. But then you wear them for the first time and two hours later you realise you’re in agonising pain! Suddenly you’re not so happy anymore. You start to think… How can something so beautiful hurt me so badly? Breaking in a brand new pair of shoes can often prove to be an uncomfortable experience, but we’ve compiled some tips for you to follow to help you avoid the heartbreak of never wanting to wear your new heels again.
Option 1: Let’s Take it Slow
What’s the worst mistake you can make after purchasing a pair of new shoes? Wearing them for an entire day for the first time - no breaks, no plasters, no back-ups. Take our Ola Heel Ankle Boots for example; they’re fabulous and we wouldn’t be able to wait to show them off either but we highly recommend that you fight the impulse. Start by wearing them in short bursts around the house before you take them out into the world. This will not only stop them from causing you an excruciating amount of pain, but being in the comfort of your own home means you have the option to take a break!
Option 2: The Freezer Trick
This hack’s for all the ladies who don’t have the time – or possibly the patience – to break in new shoes little by little. It’s super simple; fill two plastic freezer bags with water and place them in the toe area of each shoe. Then just leave your shoes in the freezer overnight. As crazy as it sounds, it really does work! As the water freezes it will expand inside your shoes and stretch out your toe area. Just make sure you don’t over fill the water bags as you don’t want to end up over stretching your shoes!
Option 3: Protect Your Feet
It’s no secret that your feet are covered in hotspots which are prone to blisters. The most common spots are usually on the heel area and at the sides and tops of the toes. If you’re not sure about where your problem areas are, walk around in your new shoes for a while and you’ll soon be able to find them. The key objective with this hack is to prevent your feet from becoming battered by blisters which are caused by friction between the skin on your foot and the material of the shoes.
How do you reduce friction you ask? Plasters. And lots of them. Apply them all over your hotspots before you put on your shoes and make sure you keep a box with you at all times as a backup for any emergency situations. Short of plasters? You can use paper tape too. Remember to keep your feet completely moisturised too – dry skin rubs a lot more than hydrated skin.
Heels can be a little trickier as you’ll find you’ll develop blisters on the balls of your feet as well as on the other hotspots we’ve mentioned. Imagine you’ve just purchased a pair of our Paige Stiletto Heels and you need to wear them the same day for your girls night later on. You dread the moment they’ll begin to hurt and end up cutting your night short but there’s no need for you to panic. We’ve got you covered. All you need is a pair of Foot Factory Gel Foot Cushions to keep your feet from feeling like they’re in shoe hell and ensure you’re able to stay standing – or dancing - till the end of the night!
Option 4: Saviour Socks
This one’s really easy, Swans. For this hack, you’ll need to dig around at the bottom of your sock drawer until you find the chunkiest socks that you own. Let’s say you’ve just had your new Hailey Ankle Boots delivered to wear as part of your autumn outfits for work. Get started by putting on your chunky socks and then your new boots and start walking - it’s probably best to do this at home, unless you’re down with the whole thick-socks-showing look. The socks will act as soft and comfy armour against all unwanted friction and they’ll also start to stretch your shoe material. Be patient though, this will be a slow process. If you’re short on time, try wearing your chunky socks and new boots while you’re at work instead. It’s easy to do this secretly under your desk or during your break times.
Option 5: Heat it Up
We’re sure a lot of you already know about this hack but let us jog your memory. Before you start you’ll need to keep in mind that this trick may be a danger to some types of synthetic materials, so checking to see if your shoes will be able to handle the heat first is essential to avoiding any tears.
So your impulse buy Daria Chelsea Boots have just arrived but they feel a little tight for wear but you really need to wear them the next day. You’ll need to grab your chunky socks again for this one and also plug in your hairdryer. Start by putting your socks on and then follow with your new beauties. Find all of the spots where your shoes feel particularly tight and blast those areas with heat for around 30 seconds - keeping your hairdryer far enough away to stop your feet from burning – and quickly walk around while they’re still hot to loosen up the shoe material. For this hack to work you’ll need to keep the shoes on - socks and all - until they’ve cooled down completely so the material stays stretched and moulded around your feet. Now you’re all set to rock your new purchase straight away!
So there you have it Swans; a list of helpful hacks to help you stop from experiencing the painful part of breaking in your new shoes. And the best part? If one doesn’t work right for you, you can try another one. Happy shoe shopping ladies!
Disclaimer: The tips we have suggested in this article are not be suitable for all shoe types. Some materials are more sensitive to others and are not compatible with these methods. Please check the materials of your shoes are suitable before attempting to try any of the methods listed to prevent damaging your purchase.