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  1. Chemical Free Beauty – Part 1 – Henna

    November 16, 2014 by cleverbuttons

    Hello!

    Today I’m posting the first of a series of posts about chemical free beauty, something that I’ve been looking in to over the last few years. I’m not claiming to know a lot about this type of thing but, in my mind, it’s only logical to look for alternatives to beauty products that have 15 strange ingredients in them that I can’t even pronounce! This is even more important for people with allergies and sensitive skin.

    This post is going to be about hair. I started chemically dyeing my hair when I was about 12 (blond streaks for anyone who is wondering) and since then I’ve just kept going. I went on to copper red after that and then dyed it purple, blue, black, red and finally blonde.
    I do admit that it was the blonde that finally ruined my hair. I ended up chopping it off to just below my ears as the condition of it was so bad. It was dry, thin and brittle and I had given up on my idea of long, shiny hair…

    …..but! There was an alternative. My friend Mai started using henna from Lush and I couldn’t help but notice how nice and healthy her hair looked! After some thinking (once you’ve got henna in your hair you can’t really dye it chemically and hence you can’t get rid of the colour if you’re not happy) I decided that I was going to try it. That was a year ago and I can honestly say that it was a great decision!

    Now, I’m not going to do a tutorial on this. I was thinking about it but Lush already has a brilliant description on their website and there are several video tutorials out there so I decided to skip this part.

    What is henna?

    Henna is a plant that has traditionally been used to dye hair, skin, nails and fabrics. According to Wikipedia it’s been used for around 6000 years in places such as Egypt and South Asia. Most people will probably think of henna body art that is used in a lot of religions as decorations for weddings.

    Lush henna

    Lush henna is what I use for my hair, it costs less than £10 for one block (325 grams) and I use half for my hair (it will depend on your hair’s length and thickness) so it actually works out slightly cheaper than a chemical dye (obviously depending on the brand of dye). It consists of henna powder mixed with coconut butter (and a few other natural ingredients like coffee and lemon juice depending on the shade) and is therefore amazingly moisturising as well as completely natural.

    The blocks come in four different shades, Rouge (fiery red, this is the one I use), Brun (deep, chocolate brown), Marron (shiny chestnut) and Noir (blue-black with red tones), so there is something there for everyone!

    My thoughts on henna

    Henna is probably one of the messiest ways of dyeing your hair, it takes some time to prepare and it takes even longer to develop. I keep mine in for six hours which means that I can’t leave the house during this period as my hair is covered with cling film. This is not an issue for me however as I like an excuse to stay home all day ;). You can also leave it in over night but I get too paranoid about staining my bed to do this. I amuse myself by reading, playing video games, cleaning or in this case writing a blog post!
    The smell is herby and rich and in my opinion quite pleasant, but I’ve seen people online who say they can’t stand it so sniff it before you purchase to see if you can cope with six hours of this smell! Buy it from your local Lush store or online.

    Henna has definitely helped my hair grow and it feels ten times nicer than it used to be, I get frequent compliments on how rich the colour looks and I LOVE being a red head! :)

    If you want to learn more about henna and why you should switch to this from chemical dyes you can read this article.

    Next time… Coconut oil (my go-to all rounder and saviour)!

    Much love,

    Emma xx


  2. New Season Predictions and How to Get Them on a Budget

    September 22, 2014 by cleverbuttons

    Hi All,

    It is that time of the year again, when I make my predictions for the future styles we will have available to us this year and next. I love this time of year for the pure fact that I can actually make predictions and see if they come true. I know that sounds strange when there is a back catalogue of looks to fall back on from the runways of the world, but I like to come up with my own ideas to. We all know that the fashion weeks are just the starting point, from which the high street will inevitably catch up with at some point, so with this in mind I have picked my current favourite on line store to find my favourite looks from the catwalks, at prices I  can afford! Enjoy all!

    The Boxed Jacket

    Another suggestion that I am seriously going to have to think carefully about is how I will wear the boxed jacket. For me, the boxed jacket is an extra design layer to the traditional spring denim jacket cut. However as I have broad shoulders this may be one that I will avoid for this season, sticking to traditionally fitted blazers instead. If however you have an athletic or pear shaped figure then is a great option for you to stay bang on trend whilst keeping the spring chill off your arms. There were so many across the catwalks this year and I liken many to a classic bomber jacket….so for my pick I am choosing this Black and white bomber jacket….remember that the catwalks will cost you thousands…this comes in at £18!!!!!

    jacket_blackwhite_1

    Colour of the Season…..Orange

    Who doesn’t love orange for autumn??? It is the perfect colour for wearing as an accenting tone, it reflects the changing seasons and works with the majority of skin tines…so I for one am really excited to see it back this season. It has been used widely in patterns on the catwalks but I have been thoroughly enjoying the colour blocked looks by the likes of Marios Schwab! so with this in mind I want to go bold with orange this year, so I have picked this scalloped edged top! It is perfect for work with a pencil skirt, home with skinny jeans and even on a night out with a leather mini skirt….this look I am really excited about! This top is an absolute steal at £8!

    cropped_tshirt_flourescent_orange_1

    The Perfect pair of Work Trousers

    I was pleased to see the peg leg trouser is back with vengeance this season! They are the perfect accompaniment to any floral or candy coloured blouse and you all know I love my floral blouses! This seasons trousers are not just plain and dull either….oh no….they are bright and bold and colourful. This pair is spot on for this look and simply imagine these with black wedge boots for winter! perfect for work ad home and very reminiscent of this seasons Philip Lim looks. These come in at £10!!

    hareem_red_1_1

     


  3. Remembering the little things

    August 7, 2014 by cleverbuttons

    Hello, it’s Emma again!

    Today I’m having a bad day, my body is aching all over and my IBS has been flaring up over the past few days which (amongst other things that we don’t have to mention, haha) means that I’m KNACKERED.

    But, instead of focusing on the bad, today I wanted to share some things that I’ve been trying to do to make days like these a little bit brighter.

    Listen to good music – this is probably one of the most crucial things for me. If I don’t listen to music I find it really hard to concentrate. I mainly listen to metal and hip hop/rap at work since it’s fast-paced and aggressive which makes it really easy to get in to the sometimes repetative and quite menial tasks I have to do. I’ve been listening to a lot of Swedish music lately, so if you like foreign stuff you should check out Lillasyster, they are from Gothenburg and they are awesome  :)

    Talk to a friend! – I do this a lot, sometimes things just overwhelm me and I need someone to put my mind straight and give me some kind words of support. I tend to make things a lot bigger than they are, so luckily I have some lovely people in my life that can talk some sense in me!

    Make your workplace inspiring – I work in quite a crowded office which is not the most suitable place to be when you’re not feeling well. Since I spend so much time here I decided last year to make my desk more ”homely”, this is how:

    You already know that I love cats. A couple of years ago I made my boyfriend buy me a Chinese ”waving cat” after a few cocktails in town and I decided to put him on my desk at work. Best decision ever, he’s so cute and reminds me that cats actually exist, so the world can’t be all bad!

    I got myself some desk plants. I currently have five plants, four succulents and one cactus. Having plants on my desk make such a massive difference to my mood, they are green and pretty and alive and they make me happy. Succulents and cacti are really good to keep at work since they don’t need a lot of sun, plus, you only need to water them about once a month.

    In addition to the cat and the plants I’ve got: a Lisa Simpson Lego figure, a Centurion Lego figure riding a Lego horse, a tiny, fluffy chicken, some stickers and a fluffy cuddly sheep. These are just random bits that I’ve been given/bought over the past few years, they’ve made their way on to my desk and that’s where they’ll stay.

    Make plans to do something for yourself – I tend to go for the short-term plans and think about what to do the same day. My plans for this evening is to go home, sit on my sofa with my cat and play Zelda with by boyfriend on our new WiiU. Sometimes the best thing to do is pretty much nothing at all. I tend to relax by reading, watching TV or playing video games. I crochet sometimes but I’m a beginner, so for now it’s been mainly granny squares. I do want to learn more complicated stuff so hopefully I can show you!

    Last and probably the hardest and most important one:

    Don’t take your frustrations out on yourself: Whatever is the matter, remember that you are wonderful and important and that you deserve happiness. Take a deep breath.

    If you have any tips or thoughts about this I’d love to know!  We are getting our Facebook page up and running very shortly so please follow us and get involved!

    Keep being awesome,
    Emma xx


  4. Hello!

    August 3, 2014 by cleverbuttons

    Hello, readers of cleverlittlebuttons!

    Today is one of those glorious sundays where I have nothing I HAVE to do and the weather is a bit crappy, so I can sit on my sofa in my chill out clothes without feeling bad. Gotta love it!

    So yeah, this isn’t Cass! You are going to see my posts pop up on here from now on, so I thought it was only polite to introduce myself! My intention is to bring some of my thoughts, pictures and random musings in to your lives (and hopefully you will like it :)).

    Who am I?

    My name is Emma, I’m 26 years old (although I will be 27 this coming Tuesday), I’m originally from Sweden and I’ve been living in the UK since I was 20. I currently live and work in Manchester and I have to say, I love it here.

    Heyhey!

    These are a few of my favourite things…

    Fantasy – books, movies, games. If it has dragons, I will enjoy it regardless of the rest of it. I’m currently reading The Liveship Traders Trilogy by Robin Hobb.

    Animals – I guess you could say that I’m a crazy cat-lady in making, I live with a furry, black gentleman called Charlie the Puma. I love all kinds of animals, but I currently have a bit of an obsession with donkeys (it’s the fluffy, long ears).

    Nature – I just really love nature, being out in the country side soothes my soul and I occasionally hug trees (my favourite kind of tree is Oak!).

    Really excited about working together with Cass on this blog, watch this space!

    Much love xx

    (you can follow me on twitter @redinemma)


  5. 5 Ways to Update Your Rental Bathroom

    July 30, 2014 by cleverbuttons

    If you’re sick of trawling sites like Utopia and Pinterest in the vain hope that your landlord will somehow find your laptop, look at your browsing history and discover your obsession with new bathrooms, then you’re in desperate need of a bathroom overhaul. Alright, so you haven’t quite plucked up the courage to actually speak to your landlord yet. So if you’re planning on dealing with your bathroom the way it is just a little bit longer, then here are a few ideas to making the most of the bathroom you have.

    The Shower Curtain

    Of course, you cry. Your landlord might have left you a shiny new shower curtain when you moved in, but it wasn’t the nicest or most well made one. It’s probably even a little mildewed by now too. So, one of the quickest and most instant ways to update your bathroom is to swap your shower curtain out, and more often than not, it has a transformative effect. They come in all sorts of different patterns, so whatever style you’re going for, you’re bound to find one that will inject a bit of colour and personality into your bathroom.
    (more…)