HOLIDAY ROUND-UP: WHAT I READ, WORE AND USED IN BARBADOS.

If you follow me on Instagram you will know (and be incredibly be annoyed) by now that I have been in Barbados for a little over two weeks. As is mandatory on a Caribbean holiday I did all the good stuff; sipped on Pina Coladas (got caught in the rain a little too), over indulged on food, absorbed some great books, got sand absolutely everywhere, burnt my nose, became a human sacrifice for the mosquitos and made memories that will last a lifetime.

And now I’m back at home. I landed back into London Gatwick yesterday morning and was absolutely ready, by the time I found myself in a pair of silk trousers in the rain at Clapham Junction, to turn around and fly straight back out there. Alas no one was willing to pay that much for one of my kidneys so I continued on my way home and am now sitting in my kitchen, surrounded by two weeks worth of bikinis drying on every available piece of furniture, being antagonised by jet lag and frantically moisturising every five minutes for fear of losing my tan too fast.

Last year, after getting back from the same holiday, I did a big compilation of the books that I read whilst I was out there and it was really popular (tooting my own horn a little there, but I wrote a blog post explaining the importance of that not too long ago so well done me) so I decided to do it again this year.

Unfortunately I didn’t get around to reading all that many books (by my standards anyway), I got a little distracted by hangovers and my new headphones that I was using to listen to a sick-ass spotify playlist that I made. What I did do though was orchestrate a big ASOS shop before I left, and even shopped around for some summer-appropriate makeup and humidity-helping hair care.

So I thought this year I would do one better and just list all the things that I used and loved whilst on holiday, from books to scent to suncream to hair oil to bikinis to airlines (British Airways and YES there was a screaming baby, how did you know???).

Sadly though I am yet to truly make it to true blogger status as, despite paving the way to the beach with all the best intentions, I neglected to photograph myself in most of the outfits or using most of the products. I am therefore going to have to pull together a weird amalgamation of photos and links – please trust me that I used them and forgive me for being a knob (who got too distracted by rum to do any work at all).

Books

Everything I Know About Love – Dolly Alderton

I laughed, I cried and I fell totally in love with Dolly and with her story. If you are a woman I cannot recommend this book highly enough. (I read most of it on the flight on the way out there). It is beautiful and inspiring and will make you treasure your friends in a way that you didn’t even know you could.

To Die In Spring – Ralf Rothman

No, not cheery, as the title suggests. But it was hauntingly beautiful and I devoured it. It is about two German soldiers in the second world war. I’m a bit of a modern history buff and do read a lot of war books but this was one of the first I read from the German perspective and it was amazing. The story of two 17 year olds forced into a war they don’t want to be fighting in and that they know they won’t win. It really is great.

Exist West – Mohsin Hamid

This was beautifullllll!!!! And I need someone to read this so that we can talk about it. It follows the story of two refugees who escape their war torn country to the west and the hope of a better life. It’s so incredibly timely and amazing and really opened my eyes to the plight of so many people in the world right now – cannot recommend it highly enough.

The Tattooist Of Auschwitz – Heather Morris

Fuck. Fuck fuck. You need to read this book. YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK. It’s a true story and it’s a love story and it’s a truly haunting story that you need to read. It is shocking and honest and heartbreaking but it is one of the best books I have ever read, I can’t even do it justice it was so good.

A Gentleman In Moscow – Amor Towles

Right. The only one I am not convinced by but perhaps thats because I haven’t finished it yet. It’s very slow getting started and I really struggled to get into it but it is the New York Times bestseller and it is beautifully written. Historically it’s interesting and it’s well written I’m just not obsessed with it yet, I’ll keep ya posted.

Clothes

Kiss The Sky Jumpsuit – ASOS

Probably the best outfit I’ve ever bought…? Too bigger claim? I don’t know but I am obsessed with it. So flattering and grownup and sexcee. Love. Get it here.

Boohoo Jumpsuit

Jesus I wish I’d taken a photo of myself in this but unfortunately we’d all had a day on the wine by the time I got dressed so there was no one there to hold a camera up (lol). It’s very glorious and very racy and got a fuckmillion load of admiration.

Red Midi Skirt – ASOS

This is SO adorable. Admittedly when I first put it on with a puffy white top I looked a little bit like I should be milking a cow in years long gone by, but after I added a nude pair of heels (coming up in a min) and a black vest top I looked mighty fancy.

Black Midi Skirt – ASOS

This is really simple but it’s really cute – I wore it a few times on the days when I found myself with nothing to wear (you know these days). I think I’ll probably wear it more back here than I did there but still great for the heat. (And only £16!)

Turquoise Bikini – ASOS

This was the first bikini I ever bought from the high street and I bloody loved it. In the past I haven’t been able to because my breasts are over a C cup and normal shops don’t normally like that. Love this though – wore it more than any other.
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Floral Bikini – Freya Lingerie

I have loved Freya for such a long time and if you are a bigger busted gal I can’t recommend them highly enough. I love the pattern and I love the safety this brings me (I can run down the beach and know that they won’t fall out if ya catch my drift).
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Nude Heels – ASOS

I think these are so cute and so grown up and I really like them – perfect holiday shoes and look really cute with a midi-skirt – wore these with both the ones pictured above.

Red Pointed Heels – ASOS

Right. I love them. But I have one piece of advice, GET THEM IN A SIZE BIGGER because good god they pinch your toes. Despite the pinchy pain though I still love ’em.

Cosmetics

OUAI Hair Oil (now available on ASOS!)

So good I ran out of it (again – this is my second bottle). I use this in the UK too but good grief it was a god send on holiday. As the proud owner of a buff-nut I need all the help I can get with el-taming. I cannot recommend this highly enough I think it’s brill. The only hair oil I will ever use again.

Shea Moisture Weightless Texture Spray

I loveeeee this – in truth I’m not sure what it does ‘scientifically speaking’ but I thought it was great – it helped prevent the ‘poof’ that I am prone to and gave me volume in ‘not a Monica from Friends sort of way’. (and it smells great).

Vita Liberata Illuminaze Highly Active Complexion Veil

If you don’t like foundation, WHO DOES ON HOLIDAY? then this is the absolute tits. I am obsessed. It gives you a gorgeous healthy glow, matches your skin so perfectly and feels so so light weight. With the warmer weather around the corner (praise the lord), I cannot recommend it highly enough. It’s particularly great if you, like me, are prone to redness (*hrhumm* sunburn)

White Rose & Lemon Leaves Jo Loves Scent

So as many of you know I can’t eat dairy because life is cruel and that makes Easter a pain in the arse. Knowing this (and knowing that the last few years chocolate-less has been hard) my mum spoiled me to this whilst we were away and I don’t think I exaggerate when I say it’s the nicest smelling scent I’ve ever owned…

A couple of miscellaneous bits and bobs…

Lancaster Suncream

I’ve got such sensitive skin and get terrible heat rash and there are very few suncreams that I don’t react to, this is one of them. It is expensive but to my mind it is really worth it and it smells great annddddd makes your skin so smooth like a baby’s bum.

Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream (SPF 50)

Is there nothing this cream isn’t good for? I swear to god it seems to be the elixir of life. I used this every day on my face instead of real suncream for a few reasons. a) I like to look after my skin, particularly on my face so am very happy to stay with a high factor. b) because I feel like it’s so good for my skin because it’s amazing. Good for everything this.

Bose Bluetooth Headphones

I bought these on the way to the airport in a bit of an impulse move. I never ever drop that sort of money on anything without a LOT of consideration but I’m so happy I did it. I have the new iPhone 8+ which has no headphone jack and was really sick of the ones that come with the phone. It made my flight fun and basically meant I didn’t talk to anyone because I was too busy appreciating the perfect sound.

Pink Rayban Sunglasses

I’ve had these for about a year and they are so great. Love love. Very cool. And they’re not just great for a holiday either – because they are lighter you can wear them on days when the sun isn’t totally out without feeling like you’ve been thrown into darkness. My boyfriend has them in grey because now we are officially the most adorable couple in town.

Thank the lord for my beautiful sister on this holiday who took all the photos that we did manage to get and who made my Instagram look so great (by my standards anyway). She is just starting out as a photographer so if you wanna support her, please go get her on Instagram.

Best holiday ever, even though it rained. I loved every single moment, it was amazing, but truthfully I am so happy to be home. I’ve got so much blog content coming up and can’t wait to get on with it.

I hope that this post was helpful and that you can forgive me for my lack of ~useful~ photos!

(NB: Some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links – this means that I will make a small commission on any sale made!)
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2 Comments

  1. Natasza
    April 6, 2018 / 9:10 am

    I’ve been looking at this Vita Liberata face thing because I’m a sucker for light weight coverage for the summer. Now I can add this to my to-buy list (you sold me on Elasticizer, you’ll sell me on anything). Glad you had wonderful holiday but also great to have you back, Em!

  2. April 17, 2018 / 3:50 pm

    I’ve got the same Bose headphones (got them for Christmas) and they’re bloody brilliant.

    Amy | hookedonthemusic.com

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