A Postcard from LA

It’s been one month since we arrived back in Glasgow from our US road trip and I’m honestly still processing a lot of it! I can’t believe the distance we covered (about 4,000 miles – not including flights!), the things we seen (seven beautiful states!) and the places we visited. Mountains, deserts, towns, forests and cities – you name it, we probably went there!

We started our journey in California and, after a few days in Anaheim, spent four nights in LA. It was our first time visiting this awesome city and I really wanted to share a few highlights with you guys.

Here’s a postcard from LA…

Shopping

LA is ridiculously good for shopping and the mix of stores is perfect! We loved the indie streetwear, vintage treasure and high-end designer stores on Melrose, alongside specialist stores like Drake’s OVO and the adorable Pigmy Hippo Shoppe just a short walk away.

We stayed near The Grove which is a really nice outdoor shopping mall, filled with all the usual retailers like Sephora and Zara plus a really great farmer’s market. I had to be super strict with myself in LA, otherwise I’d have needed an extra suitcase!

Food

You’ll never be stuck for a bite to eat in LA and we noticed that tacos were the most popular dish (though we couldn’t get near the Mexican bars on Cinco de Mayo – too busy!). One of my favourite places we grabbed breakfast was Eggslut… so much so that I’ve been trying to recreate the sandwich I had ever since!

We also adored Cake Monkey, which came highly recommended by some of you over on Instagram. Amazing cakes and delicious coffee – it’s probably for the best that we discovered it on our last day in the city…

Sightseeing

In just a few days, we managed to squeeze in a lot of sightseeing. It was fun to tick the Hollywood Walk of Fame off of our list but, if you go, be prepared for it to be extremely crowded! Seeing the hand and foot prints outside of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre was like taking in a little bit of cinematic history and we also couldn’t resist going on a studio tour while we were in Tinsel Town – we chose the Warner Brothers tour and loved every minute!

The Griffith Observatory at the top of the Hollywood Hills has stunning views and is well worth the hike/Uber ride up there – especially on a clear day.

We also hit a couple of beaches for some laid-back, California vibes. Venice Beach was iconic and exactly how it looks in the movies and Santa Monica was perfect for people watching (and posing!).

Staying

While in LA, we stayed in Fairfax at The Farmer’s Daughter Hotel. I’m not going to mention too much about the hotel itself (there’s a separate review post in the works!), but the area itself was very well-located for shopping and food. Plus, you could see the Hollywood sign as soon as you stepped out of the door!

I think the best thing we found about spending time in LA is that you can really make it any kind of trip you want. If you want to take it easy, there are plenty of nice places and beaches to hang out at or, if you’d rather to be a tourist, there are plenty of activities to fill your day with too.

We left the city with lots of great memories but still hungry for a little bit more. I have a feeling we will be back in this babe of a town someday… watch this space! In the meantime, for more photos from our road trip, hop over to my Instagram and take a peek.

Have you ever visited LA? What are your favourite things to do in la la land?

Electric Ink Skincare for Tattoo Lovers

Gary and I have been getting tattooed for a long time now and between the two of us, we have quite the collection (you can check out a full ‘tour’ of my tattoos here!). The number one question that we’re often asked from strangers is how our tattoos are still so bright after all these years, and our answer is pretty straightforward: look after them! Moisturising and protecting your tattoos long after the healing process is over is honestly the most important thing you can do, especially if they are a big part of your personal style.

Keeping everything looking fresh and vibrant can be challenging, especially when you’ve had some of your tattoos for a number of years, so we’re always on the lookout for anything that might give us a hand!

Electric Ink tattoo care initially caught my eye due to their beautiful branding, and I was keen to find out more about this new range of products to see if they were more than just a pretty package.

The collection – which is exclusive to Superdrug – consists of a daily moisturiser, a vibrancy serum and a defining body oil. All three Electric Ink products are vegan friendly, and use nourishing ingredients like coconut oil, plant extracts and vitamin C to hydrate the skin and help maintain the colour pigment of your tattoos.

You could choose to incorporate the defining body oil into your usual skincare routine – it’s helpful against sun damage (but ALWAYS use SPF too!) and it smells great! It’s also in a handy spray bottle, which is useful if you have tattoos in hard to reach areas (and I do!).

Gary’s latest tattoo is a portrait of Bosley – I love it so much! 

The vibrancy serum and daily moisturiser by Electric Ink are perfect for helping to enhance your tattoos, while giving your skin a treat at the same time. The daily moisturiser is light in texture and ideal for quenching dry skin, and it’s probably the product we reach for the most. The vibrancy serum is less of an ‘everyday’ product, but it’s great for helping tattoos look fresh and defined – I can see it especially coming in handy when I’m shooting photos.

So far, both Gary and I have been impressed with this collection. It’s refreshing to see products on the market aimed at maintaining healed tattoos, especially as you can just walk into Superdrug and pick them up. Our tattoos are a reflection of who we are, from our first ever pieces right through to our most recent work – so we want them to look as good as possible for as long as possible!

Have you tried any of the Electric Ink line? Tell me about your first tattoo!

 

 

 

This post contains PR samples but all views and tattoo anecdotes are mine 

I Launched My Rebrand and Disappeared for 3 Weeks… Am I Crazy?

It’s been about six weeks since I officially launched my rebrand (you may pass GO, you may collect £200 – figuratively, of course…) and over the weekend, I reflected a little on how things have went and what I’ve learned.

The first thing that sprung to mind? The timing. Going live on a Sunday morning wasn’t exactly my dream plan when I first set out to do this and, as I tweeted my news, I felt like I was going against every digital business article I’d ever read.

All of a sudden, it was looking like all behind the scenes work was ready – the links, the post titles, the new social media handles, the archived stuff…it all WORKED. But it was a Sunday morning, and who the heck launches something new at that stage in the week?!

I was too excited to hold off. I just wanted to put it out there – because sometimes you just have to jump and do what your gut is telling you (in my case, my gut was looking at me with a manic grin while nodding vigorously). I had originally planned to build up momentum and to let people know well in advance that at a precise date, and a precise time, things would be ready. I’d be Little Miss Slick, launching this digital rebrand like a pro (WATCH OUT, SILICONE VALLEY, eh?).

Instead, I did a final check, uploaded a fresh blog post and threw open the door! And it felt good. Like, REALLY GOOD. I had a celebratory dance around the room and then I had to move onto my next task: I had to pack a bag because I was leaving for a three week road trip across America a few hours later. And the chances of me being able to post anything else to my shiny new site was going to be slim to non-existent.

Which I guess brings me to my main point! Three weeks in the fast-paced world of blogging and social media might as well be a lifetime and I’ll admit I was a bit nervous to be swanning off of the grid literally as I launched something new. I was worried that it would just sort of disappear – and I would disappear along with it!

I took a risk and hoped that it would work out. And you know what? It did! While I was away, I wasn’t online as much as usual (what can I say? There’s no wifi in the desert, you guys!) but when I did manage to check in, I was totally blown away by the lovely support and encouraging messages I was getting. Readers, PRs, brands, friends and creative folk that I really respect had noticed the rebrand and had taken the time to let me know how much they liked it – and I was super grateful for the feedback. I even felt silly for worrying!

So, here’s what I’ve learned: sometimes you need to go against convention and just do what feels like the right thing for you. You will be FINE, trust me! Because when it comes to you, your projects, your hustle, your passions, your rebrand, whatever it may be – there is no convention. It’s your playground and your ball and you get to decide what’s normal and what isn’t!

Planning is good, but pressure to be perfect? Not so good. Just be you, and the rest will work itself out. I hope that if you’re planning something awesome soon, you enjoy every crazy moment – even the unexpected ones!