No Wallflowers.

A BLOG BY BEC OAKES

I can't live without


Sunday, 30 August 2015
Summer loving...

My posts have taken a backseat recently but for a good reason - I've just been offered a new job! From next week I will be working as a part-time sales assistant at Jack Wills. I've been trying to get a job within fashion retail for about 2 years so I'm super excited. It will help fund my shopping addiction whilst I'm still at university whilst giving me experience that kickstarts my career in the fashion industry for when I graduate. I can't wait to start working for the 'fabulously British' brand and have decided to create a post inspired by the #jwcantlivewithout lists within their Autumn 2015 handbook. Here it is…

I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT…

-   HOT CHOCOLATE WHEN IN RAINS
-   CUDDLES WITH MY CAT
-   YOGA
-   LAZY DAYS IN BED
-   COCONUT AND MILK CHOCOLATE MILLIE'S COOKIES
-   OVERSIZED JUMPERS
-   DISNEY FILMS
-   CHUNKY BOOTS
-   CANDY KITTENS ETON MESS
-   DANCING TO TAYLOR SWIFT
-   APRÉS SKI
-   RUM
-   NORTHERN QUARTER
-   MACARONS
-   INSTAGRAM
-   AUDREY HEPBURN
-   BOYS WHO DRESS WELL
-   ART GALLERY VISITS
-   THE BEST FRIENDS IN THE WORLD 

So, what are your absolute favourite things? What simple pleasures brighten up your day? What can you not live without? Let me know...

Peace x   

Review: Balmy Daze


Wednesday, 19 August 2015

I would consider myself to be a very lucky girl. I'm healthy, have amazing friends and family and live in one of the best cities in the world. I'd also consider myself blessed for another, perhaps more trivial, reason: I have great lips. They're naturally plump and have quite a strong pink pigment to them. I think when God created me, he took all the pigment that should have gone into my skin and pumped it into my lips.

Anyway, because of this I very rarely wear lipstick (very rarely translating to a couple of times a year at most). Instead I just slick on some lip balm and go. I have a bit of an addiction and on a recent trip to Florida, I got carried away in my purchasing of it. I've spent the last couple of weeks testing them out and have compiled some reviews for your viewing.


EOS Lip Sphere in Summer Fruit



I'd wanted to try this lip balm for quite a while but at £7 a sphere in Topshop I couldn't justify buying one to simply see what it was like. When I spotted it on special offer for just $2.97 in Walmart, I jumped at the chance to try it out without wasting too much money. Applying this balm is incredibly easy however it takes a lot of it to feel any benefits and even then it's not awfully moisturising. I think it's good for a quick boost of moisture or maybe as a base under a lipstick but if replenishment is what you're looking for, there are definitely better options.

Overall Rating: 7/10


Burt's Bees Soothing Lip Balm with Eucalyptus & Menthol



I love Burt's Bees products and Walmart always has a great selection of them. I picked up their soothing balm on a complete whim and am so happy I did. This is such an amazing balm! The menthol within it tingles on contact with the lips and a little bit goes a long way. It's really soothing and I'm sure it'll come in handy when winter comes around and my skin goes into meltdown mode. It has quickly become one of the core products in my daily makeup routine but I'm struggling to find a UK stockist and am starting to worry about what I'll do when it runs out.

Overall Rating: 9/10


Mr Zoggs Sex Wax Sunscreen Coconut Lip Balm



Anyone with any knowledge of surf culture has heard of Mr Zoggs Sex Wax. It's a leading board wax company and one of the dominating brands at the Ron Jon Surf Shop in Cocoa Beach. They also sell a range of sun care products including this coconut lip balm with SPF 23. I tried it out while I was in Florida and was incredibly disappointed. It offers very little in terms of moisture and when that ran out my lips felt worse than before. Maybe it would suit someone with more natural oils in their skin but for me it just didn't work.

Overall Rating: 3/10

Peace x

In with the new.


Thursday, 13 August 2015

Yesterday I got my hair cut and coloured. After five months since my last trip to see the beautiful Stacey of Cabello Ormskirk, it was long overdue. I had about three inches cut off the overall length, some nice long layers cut in to give it shape and a full head of highlights in light honey tones. As cheesy as it may seem, I feel like my new look brings about a new start. My old hair was messy and gave off the impression that I didn't care, definitely not a good thing for somebody looking to work within fashion and media. In contrast, my new look is a lot more sophisticated and professional. I love it!

By complete coincidence, my whole week has followed the theme of 'out with the old and in with the new'. I retired my beloved black Converse low tops. They were quite literally falling apart and just like my hair, made me look like a slob. They've been replaced with a shiny new pair that most definitely need dirtying up a bit before I wear them in public.

The last change in my life has been a little more difficult to deal with. A couple of months ago I started spending time with a guy and developed feelings for him. He was a wonderful person but when the uni year ended what we had fizzled out. A short while later he got a girlfriend and I was quite honestly devastated. In order to gain clarity I asked him what had happened. He said that he'd really enjoyed my company but I had never made much of an effort to show much affection towards him and he moved on. That's completely fair. I was scared of coming across too strong so consciously acted cool. In hindsight I would have acted differently because it may have lead to an alternate ending. In the future I'm definitely going to allow myself to show my vulnerability and just see what comes from it.

Peace x

That Florida Feeling


Friday, 31 July 2015
5.41am in Cocoa Beach, Fl

A good while ago a boy said something that's always stuck me. He said 'at least once in your life, get up and watch the sunrise. It will make you understand'. He spoke poetically and I hung on every word he said. Admittedly, there is a 98% chance that he was high at the time but that didn't matter. While I was away in Florida I had the opportunity to watch the sunrise and at about 5.20 in the morning, I wandered down to the beach, sat down in the sand and waited.

As the sun began to rise slowly above the horizon I was overcome by it's beauty, so much so that I forgot to take any pictures until it was fully risen above the sea. It was a great experience. I wouldn't say I necessarily understand anything more about life, gained spiritual clarity or anything else profound, however it was incredibly beautiful and I certainly agree that it's something everyone must do at least once in their lives.

Peace x

Inthefrow interview


Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Hey beautiful people! As you're probably already aware, I want to be a writer and have been gaining experience within journalism by writing for The Tab Manchester. A couple of months ago I was lucky enough to interview the incredible Victoria Magrath of inthefrow.com. She's a Wigan native (we went to the same college) and both alumni of and former lecturer at UoM. She's now living the dream as a full-time blogger down in London but somehow managed to take time out of her busy schedule to talk to little me. After the obvious issues that come with collab articles and a few technical difficulties, the piece was published while I was on holiday and I thought I'd share it with you guys.

Check it out here.

Peace x

'11 things you didn't know about me' Tag


Monday, 20 July 2015
Just a cas plane selfie...

I've recently been tagged by the beautiful Priya of priyasvnsn.com to do the '11 things you didn't know about me' tag. Basically, I answer the 11 questions she asked me then tag up to 10 people to answer 11 questions I ask them. Here we go…

What's your hobby?

I'm quite an active person and I love surfing, skiing and yoga. I'm also a passionate writer and one day would love to have a book of my essays published.

Are you a coffee or tea addict?

I actually hate both. I have the tastebuds of a young child and am definitely a hot chocolate kinda gal!

What inspires you the most?

I'm a bit of a feminist so am incredibly inspired by the women who are paving their ways within typically male dominated industries. Lena Dunham and Amy Schumer are my ladies!

Your favourite quote…

'I loathe to discuss having a 'type', but all evidence suggests that mine is someone that strikes such a particular balance of handsome and boring that I assign complexity to his silence, confuse that silence for disapproval, and believe that that disapproval is indicative of my failure to meet standards I held for myself long before he entered my sphere' ~ Tavi Gevinson

OR…


What's your favourite song or most played song of the week?

My favourite song is Hockey Teeth by Bahamas and the song I've played the most this week is probably Game for Girls by Say Lou Lou & Lindstrøm. It's on my summer playlist that I listened to on repeat on my flight back from Orlando.

Do you have any piercings?

I don't. Alongside seagulls, needles is probably my biggest fear. It's really irritating though because I'd love to get a tattoo.

What would your perfect holiday be?

Ah there's so many places I want to visit. I have serious wanderlust! I really want to do a road trip through California and visit all the iconic places along the way. I also love skiing so anywhere with lots of snow is also a guaranteed win.

What's your favourite shop?

All of them aha! My absolute favourites are American Apparel, Topshop, Brandy Melville and the US Urban Outfitters website. Affleck's Palace in Manchester and The Vintage Scene on ASOS Marketplace are vintage dreams!

Do you speak any other languages? If not what language would you like to learn?

I speak very basic French but given the chance I'd love to be able to speak it fluently because it's such a beautiful language to listen to.

What's your favourite body spray or perfume? Why?



I'm not a huge fan of wearing perfume but while I was in Florida I bought Abercrombie and Fitch's new release. It's called '8' and has essences of peach, jasmine and warm sandalwood in it. It's subtle, pretty and a hell of a lot better than all the strong fragrances they attack you with in Selfridges.

2 pet peeves…

My biggest pet peeves are people who use the word 'bae' seriously and the social stigma that all women should wear bras.


Done! So, here's the beautiful ladies I'm tagging to answer my questions…

Magdalena of Lullaby for Pies
Nisha of HOW I WEAR
Emma of EMMA LOUISE
Laura of The Classic Cat

And my questions…

-  What three items in your wardrobe would you consider sum up your personal style the best?
-  Favourite Netflix show to binge watch?
-  Do you ever stalk people on Facebook? If yes, how often?
-  What's the best compliment you've ever received?
-  If you spend a day in the body of anybody in the world, who would you pick?
-  What's your favourite book?
-  What's your star sign? And do you believe it holds influence over your personality?
-  What's your guilty pleasure?
-  Love or money?
-  What beauty product could you not live without?
-  Imagine you're living the dream. What are you doing in five years?

Can't wait for your responses!

Peace x


OOTD: Mermaid & Braids


Saturday, 18 July 2015

So I got back from Florida this morning and I'm ridiculously jet lagged right now. Our flight was delayed by 2 hours and turbulence was awful but it was a great trip. Check out some pics from the trip on Instagram. I thought I'd do a nice quick OOTD post (my first one!) because I somehow managed to look half-decent after the nine hour flight there and, not to blow my own horn or anything, pulled together a pretty cool outfit.

The simple look consists of a white high neck crop top from Topshop (which I can't get enough of and own in three colours) with my favourite Roxy beach pants. I bought them in the midseason sale and I'm not overreacting when I say they're the most comfortable pants I've ever worn. I paired the ensemble with leather flip flops because Florida is damn hot! This also explains my plaits, inspired by MØ in the Lean On video.

Peace x