Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Hair Heroes - My Favourite Products for a New Shorter Hairstyle

A few months ago out of the blue, I decided I really wanted to cut my hair. Uni was almost over and I felt like I wanted a change for starting the newest chapter of my life. I have had long hair for as long as I could remember and I never had any desire to change it - in short getting my hair cut short was a big deal. Some of my friends and family were all for it, championing the change and others were begging me not to do it. I had made my decision though and during the turmoil of my dissertation I got the chop at the amazing Dean Jones Salon at Elm Row and I am so happy I did. 

I completely love my new shorter hairstyle but it was difficult finding the right products for my new hairdo. After quite a lot of trial and error, I have finally found four products that I love and work beautifully with my shorter locks. So for any girls (or guys) rocking a new shorter hairstyle - here are some great products to try out.

I used the original Moroccan Oil a few years ago and initially loved it. It made my hair feel soft, look shiny and got rid of the layer of frizz that sometimes plagues my locks. After a little while, I found it a little heavy on my hair and felt like it was making my hair greasier looking so I stopped using it. After getting my hair done with the lovely guys down at the Reilly Denholm salon in Leith I was turned on to the amazing Morrocan Oil Light for thinner and lighter coloured hair. I now use this religiously after every wash and it's also a great treatment for when the ends of my hair are feeling a bit dry. The only oil you need in your hair arsenal. 

We were kindly sent a few products from the lovely ladies at Salon Success and the minute I tried out the Neuro range I fell in love. My hair can get really tangled at times - especially after day three of being tied up in a bun. A good conditioner is vital to my hair care routine and I am loving the Neuro Rinse Conditioner. A tiny pea-sized amount goes a long way and has my locks feeling soft and conditioned in seconds. It smells amazing and I feel like it keeps my hair looking and feeling shinier and smoother for longer than other products I have used in the past. 

I must admit I am really not great at using heat protection on my hair before blow drying and styling with tools. I think it is mostly just laziness and feeling like its adding another pointless step into my routine. I like to try out new products though and I liked the fact that the Neuro spray was going to protect but also smooth and add shine to my hair. I have ended up using this product almost every day I really see the positive effects on my hair and I love how smooth my hair feels after a few sprays. It is also an added bonus that I know my hair is protected from heat products. 

I hate to apply hairspray to finish off styling my hair - it makes my hair feel sticky and it doesn't brush out of my hair very nicely either. I did feel like I needed a product to just polish off my hair and give it a little extra shine and that finishing touch. The Awapuhi Shine Spray not only smells gorgeous but it makes my hair feel and look beautiful too. I have never believed in hair perfume but this product is almost that with an extra kick off moisturisation and polish to your locks. 



Sunday, 29 April 2018

Dean Jones Hairdressing - How to get the Perfect Haircut

Finding a great hairdresser is so important. There is nothing that makes me feel more confident than when my hair is freshly cut, bouncy and beautiful. After my lovely friend and hairdresser Lauren moved to Canada I felt anxious to get my hair cut anywhere else in case they ruined my hair. With Lauren, I could tell her if I didn't like something and she always listened to exactly what I wanted. After biting the bullet and visiting a few different salons I realised that there are some hard and fast ways of ensuring you get the hair of your dreams every time you sit down in the chair.

I visited the elegant and beautiful Dean Jones Salon on Elm Row looking for a big change to my hair. I am graduating this year and starting a whole new chapter of my life so I wanted to make a change to my appearance too. I've had really long hair for as long as I can remember - so to me this was a huge deal! I sat down with Dean and explained to him my vision for my hair - showing him a few different photos and explaining what I definitely didn't want. The experience felt like a real collaboration, Dean passionately made references to different shorter styles showing me photos of a Sienna Miller cut which was exactly what I had in mind. His professionalism and obvious love for the job put me at instant ease and when he went to cut a huge amount of hair off I actually felt relaxed and safe in his hands.

My overall experience with Dean was amazing he talked passionately about his love for hairdressing and how he wanted every type of client to walk through the door. Whether that be a student visiting for an edgy colour or a lovely grandmother coming in for a cup of tea and trim. When I was in the salon a new mother was in for what must have been her first cut and colour since giving birth. The team at Dean Jones couldn't have been more accommodating and it was lovely to see how relaxed both mother and baby looked. 

I absolutely love my new shorter hair and have never received so many compliments on my new look. In between foils and blow drys I managed to probe Dean into giving me some amazing tips and tricks for getting the style you want and how to maintain it when you get home;

1. Bring a few different pictures. 
Not every style is going to suit everyone but a really great hairdresser can take elements of the style you want and make it work for you. 

2. Don't be afraid to ask questions and use the consultation time. 
If you're not sure don't just settle for the first option discussed. Your hairdresser wants you to have the best experience possible so ask the difficult questions and make sure you are completely happy with the agreed final style.

3. Try something different.
Be brave, your in the best possible hands for your hair. If you want a fringe, get the fringe - it is only hair and it will grow back. 

4. Take advantage of the expert advice.
If you have a question - about styling your hair or hair care, in general, grab your moment and ask. When I was in the salon Dean gave me some amazing advice for caring for coloured hair and also extensive tips for blowing drying my hair. 

5. If you aren't happy - speak up, politely. 
I know it can be so awkward but if you aren't happy, say something. The stylist wants a happy customer and would much rather re-do your hair than have you leaving unhappy. Even if you just want an extra inch of the ends or a slightly different colour. It is always worth it to make sure you leave the salon 100% happy!

If you are looking for an amazing and gorgeous salon to visit in town look no further than Dean Jones. Dean is so talented and made me feel at complete ease throughout the experience. The salon is beautiful and everyone goes above and beyond to ensure I had the best experience possible. 

We are running an exciting competition with Dean Jones for the details head over to our Facebook or Instagram for more information. 

Check out Dean Jones Hairdressing on social media;


Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Personal Styling Experience at John Lewis Edinburgh

Booking a personal styling appointment has never been something that has crossed my mind, but when I was invited to one at John Lewis Edinburgh last week, the idea intrigued me. With a bit of encouragement from Zoë (who is my full-time personal dresser), I decided to go along and see if I could learn how to be a bit more versatile with my wardrobe choices.

My sister Jinny came with me in the hope of finding an outfit to wear to a wedding that she has coming up, and although she didn't leave with an outfit in the end (these things take time if you are as... particular as she is), she was definitely inspired by the experience. Anyway, it was great having her there, it was nice to have a second opinion from someone I trust.

I would definitely take someone with you if you fancy booking in, we had such a fun afternoon and the appointment costs nothing. I had this image that personal styling was for super-rich people who are ready to splash the cash, but actually, there was no pressure whatsoever to purchase anything at the end of the appointment. 

This is the perfect, stress-free way to shop even if you are just looking to buy a top or a new pair of jeans. Everything is handed to you, in your size, ready and waiting for you to arrive. It doesn't have to be a two-hour long appointment where you end up buying a whole new wardrobe. The appointment is completely personal to you so you can make it what you want. Our appointment gave me the perfect opportunity to have a look at some possible graduation outfits, which is a scary thought, but exciting, and I now have my eye on a certain little Eudon Choi number.

Our stylist, Mary, was amazing. One look at us both and she knew our sizes and told us what colour palettes we could wear. John Lewis Edinburgh isn't somewhere that I am naturally drawn to when clothes shopping, I think of it as more of a homeware store. But after Mary talked us through some of the brands and the exclusive range that John Lewis stock, I felt a bit like I had been missing out. I didn't realise just how much of their clothing is exclusive to JL (its a lot), and they stock almost all of the brands that you can find on George street. I don't know if its just all of this snow talking, but the idea of being able to find all of those shops under one roof is pretty appealing to me right now. Don't get me wrong, it's not often that you would find me shopping on George Street, you know £££, but next time I'm shopping for occasionwear I am probably going to make John Lewis my first stop.

They have also just released their gorgeous Eudon Choi collection. You probably have to be about 3 feet taller than me to pull it off but the dresses were just beautiful and so elegant. I was expecting everything to be very pricey but I was pleasantly surprised with some of the price tags. Most of the pieces that Mary pulled for us weren't alarmingly expensive. I still wouldn't shop here for my every-day wear but some of the clothing wasn't much more than you might pay in the likes of Zara. I have added prices and links to the outfits that we tried on below to give you an idea.

They recommend booking an appointment a day or two before you want to go but there are always two stylists in so I wouldn't worry if you are a bit last minute. I should also mention that they don't really stock much in a size 6 at the moment which could limit you a bit if you are petite like me, but Mary knew which clothes were made in a smaller fit so it wasn't a problem.

Toni x

Exclusive to John Lewis

          Modern Rarity - £140                                                                          and
          Exclusive to John Lewis                                   Lizia Minimal Biker Jacket by Ted Baker - £329
                                                                      Both Exclusive to John Lewis

Exclusive to John Lewis

Exclusive to John Lewis


Thursday, 22 February 2018

The Brits Awards - The Best of The Best

The Brit Awards are arguably the biggest and most exciting music awards ceremony in Europe. As always, the red carpet is watched and analysed by people all over the world. A highlight for all of us was everyone supporting the #timesup campaign wearing a rose pin and carrying a white rose. A beautiful protest supporting such an incredible cause.

If you saw our Instagram stories from the night you probably saw my full girl crush on Dua Lipa's baby pink tiered tulle Giambattista Vali extravaganza. The layers of tulle, high-lo structure and contrasting with the black velvet is a dream come true. Completely and utterly stunning. Her after party dress was just as extra as the pink- a metallic bronzed two piece with madonna-esque circa 80's sleeves it's a winner for me. I'll be taking this dress as full inspiration for my grad ball dress so watch this space. 

Next had to be my Queen Maya Jama in this custom pink glitter mini dress designed by Henry Holland. The sleeves, here again, are the perfect gradual trumpet and the coat style is ultimate chic. For the after party Maya changed into another Henry Holland dress with one sleeve and a half and half situ- she's killing it as usual. 

Feathery love is in full swing in Adowa Aboah's sleeveless white gown. I love how effortless and glamorous this is. 

I couldn't write about the Brit's without mentioning the Haim gals. Their tri-colour afterparty threads are perfectly uniform straight from fashion week.

Z x

All images are courtesy of Getty. 


Sunday, 11 February 2018

Galentine's Day - Celebrating Female Friendship in Style!

Valentine's Day
  1. 14 February, a day when it is traditional to send a card, often anonymously, to a person one is romantically involved with or attracted to.

    "I want to be with the woman I love on Valentine's Day"

If you're single, newly or chronically - sitting in on your own on a day that celebrates love and relationships can be a little depressing. But I have decided to concentrate on the latter part of that definition 'be with the woman I love on Valentine's Day'. 

For the last few years, some of the most meaningful, reliable and supportive relationships in my life have been that of my gal pals. The love and encouragement they have shown me are really special and for me, it has always been more stable than any relationship I have had with a man. For this reason on February the 14th I will be celebrating my friendships and the love I have for my girlfriends.

With some help from the lovely Rachel at Hooray Cakes, we threw the most amazing Galentine's Day Brunch for the amazing women in our lives. Everything from food, flowers, decor and music was covered and it was the perfect way to treat the amazing women we have in our lives.

With help from Rachel, she showed me how to work that budget and how a dash around the big Tesco and some creativity is all you need.

The Decor

Every time I work with Rachel she blows me away with her imaginative and incredibly creative way of decorating on the tightest budgets. She has shared with me some of her top tips for decorating;

1. Give yourself time to plan, and the best time to find amazing decor bits for a low price is the day after the holiday. So after Valentines Day this year, start looking for bargains for next years party.

2. She swears by the local grocery stores, B&M, eBay and charity shops.

3. Before planning any type of party she hops onto the inspiration mothership that is Pinterest and pulls together different looks and ideas that she loves.

4. Then the creativity comes in - things like swapping the gold cutlery on Pinterest for plastic dupes from Tesco can really pull that party look together.

Another gorgeous way to decorate and also gift the ladies in your life on Galentine's is with beautiful and customised flowers from the amazing Mud Urban Flowers. The amazing team have just started delivering in Edinburgh and there really isn't any better way to spread the love. Mud Urban also have the amazing Olivia Hope Calligraphy on board to personalise the boxes for that extra edge.

The Food

Rachel is the most fantastic baker and can do everything from dainty little macaroons to decadent five-tier wedding cakes. Her number one tip is to keep everything simple. Rachel and I decided to go to our old favourite Lidl the day before and picked up some of their amazing waffles and pancakes. Let everyone decorate their own brunch treats with fruit, Nutella, yoghurt and syrup - and its so much less stress and clean up for you.

Of course, the day wouldn't be complete without some gorgeous baked treats from Rachel. She treated us all to a gorgeous Victoria Sponge Cake, heart-shaped cookies and cute as a button festive cupcakes. These treats are great for eating on the day and giving away as a cute Galentine's Day Gift!

Hooray Cakes is the ultimate destination for homemade, creative and beautiful cakes. Check out their Facebook page here for all your baked good needs!

 How are you all celebrating Valentine's or Galentine's this year?

L x


Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Howdy there: this is 2018's first big trend.

If like me your brow was slightly crossed when you read that Western styles were coming straight for our wardrobes at the start of the year please don't feel like you were alone. I can't quite see myself reaching for a cowboy hat or some electric red cowboy boots but, as always, I'm open to trying something new. Think more flared jeans, fringed and studded suede jackets or waistcoats, a bright and bold leather studded side bag for all our city needs or even an ankle cowboy boot rather than the full calf length. Don't be worried it's not about a FULL injection of western but just touches and why not? Often I feel like the trends shared and influenced by us are predictable and repeated but I wasn't expecting western with a city girl shake-up. I've tried a few of my favourite finds to try to add some texture to my wardrobe. Plus is love anything with a fringe so I'm more than happy to swing my way around this rather chilly January/February we're having. This jacket has breathed a new lease of life into my wardrobe but if you see me flapping about in the wind please don't laugh.


Monday, 22 January 2018

Our Guide to Burn's Night in Edinburgh

As TQR is made up of 3 Scottish gals, we decided to put together a very patriotic blog post about a traditional Scottish celebration that is almost upon us. Burns Night celebrates the life of our national poet, Robert Burns and all of his wonderful poetry of course (see example below):

The Silver Tassie

Go bring to me a pint o wine,
And fill it in a silver tassie;
That I may drink, before I go,
A service to my bonie lassie:
The boat rocks at the pier o Leith,
Fu loud the wind blaws frae the Ferry,
The ship rides by the Berwick-law,
And I maun leave my bony Mary.

The trumpets sound, the banners fly,
The glittering spears are rankèd ready,
The shouts o war are heard afar,
The battle closes deep and bloody.
It's not the roar o sea or shore,
Wad make me langer wish to tarry;
Nor shouts o war that's heard afar –
It's leaving thee, my bony Mary!

A very traditional Burns night involves bagpipes, whiskey, highland dancers and the main event is, of course, the Haggis. But seeing as we are three twenty-somethings living in 21st century Edinburgh, we like to do things our own way. And so for you, we have put together a few different and more modern ways of celebrating the wonderful Robert Burns.

1. Calvin Haggis Burger at Byron

For a limited time only (from Monday 23rd to Sunday 29th) all of Byron's Scottish restaurants will be celebrating Burns night by serving the delicious Calvin Haggis burger. This wonderful creation is made up of a 6oz hamburger, bacon and onion relish, a potato scone, American cheese, dry cure bacon, a fried egg, onions, Byron sauce and of course HAGGIS. This is the only Burger at Byron that includes Haggis so get it while you can. (Also, the cheese and bacon fries are a must-have. You will thank us later)

2. MacSween Haggis Afternoon Tea at The Beer Kitchen

A Haggis themed Afternoon tea is being served in The Beer Kitchen from Monday the 22nd to Sunday the 28th of January between 12pm and 6.30pm. It is £15 for two people which include a half pint of Beer each. Cant go wrong with that.

3. Eight Course Scottish Tapas Night at Butternut Squash in Portobello

The small but delicious little cafe on Bath Street in Portobello - which is about as east as you can go without leaving Edinburgh, is hosting a truly spectacular Burns feast. 8 Scottish inspired dishes for only £25.00 per person, complete with live music and dancing. You can book via Butternut Squash's Facebook page which is linked above. Such a great way to support a local business on Burns night and this is where Lyndsey is heading this year.

4. Teuchters Landing Amazing Scottish Food All Year Round

Teuchters Landing has to be one the best place to get traditional Scottish food in Edinburgh. Situated on The Shore in Leith it's the perfect place to grab something to eat with friends or family. The food is super fresh and delicious, and there is something for everybody on the menu. Teuchters offers haggis, smoked salmon and black pudding all year round, so if you are planning a last minute Burns celebration look no further!

5. The Ghillie Dhu for a Traditional and Spectacular Burns Celebration!

The Ghillie Dhu at the West End of town in Edinburgh is a gorgeous venue that knows how to throw an amazing party! This year they have the 'Rabbie Burns experience' running all week beginning the 19th of January starting from £25.95 per person. This includes a dram on arrival, a 4 course traditional Burns feast, the unforgettable addressing of the haggis and a live ceilidh band throughout the night. The place to be in Edinburgh to celebrate Burns in style!

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