19 Apr 2018

My Hydration Heroes

Best Skincare Products for Dry Skin | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Best Skincare Products for Dry Skin | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Best Skincare Products for Dry Skin | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

I wish it was summer already.

I mean, it's not like it would make that much of a difference to the weather in Glasgow, but I can at least dream of sunshine - right? The thing is, sunshine works wonders for my skin. What doesn't work wonders for my skin is the central heating still needing to be switched on in April. My skin has struggled with this bitterly cold winter that seems like it's never going to end, and I feel like I've tried everything under the sun.

Over the past few weeks, however, I've found some absolute gems that are stealing the show. Some are a little on the pricey side, but I've also found some complete and utter bargains that I am seriously impressed by. Hopefully, this lineup will be enough to see me through to the better weather - and some will definitely be staying in my stash through the summer, too.

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18 Apr 2018

A Weekend in Manchester

How To Spend a Weekend in Manchester | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
How To Spend a Weekend in Manchester | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
How To Spend a Weekend in Manchester | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Growing up, I spent many a weekend in Manchester. If you didn't already know, I was born in Manchester, and a huge chunk of my family still live there, so we spent a lot of time visiting them. Nowadays, we don't quite make it down as often, what with work and life getting in the way, but when The Courteeners announced a date at the Manchester Arena for the anniversary of their debut album - St Jude - it seemed like a good excuse for a trip back down. Or up, in Paddy's case.

We'd originally planned on just staying the Saturday night, as it was a pretty busy weekend in Manchester with the derby and the marathon both taking place and finding a hotel was proving to be a bit of a struggle. We changed our mind at the last minute, however, and decided to meet in Manchester on the Friday night so that we could spend a bit more time in the city.

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12 Apr 2018

Bibimbap Glasgow

Bibimbap Glasgow Review Menu | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Bibimbap Glasgow Review Menu | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Bibimbap Glasgow Review Menu | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

The New Kid on the Block

The Glasgow food scene is looking pretty great right now, with some brilliant new restaurants popping up on all sides of the city. One of the newest additions to our collection of excellent eateries is Bibimbap, boasting a menu inspired by Korean comfort food and full of classic, flavourful dishes. Having opened at the end of February, Bibimbap has already received rave reviews from many of my favourite foodies in the know, so I was pretty excited to try it out for myself last week.

I headed along to the city centre restaurant - which occupies the unit once home to Riverhill on West Nile Street, last Thursday evening to catch up with Lindsey over some good food. It was pretty busy when we arrived, about 6pm, and has been full of happy faces whenever I've walked by since.

I'd never heard of Bibimbap's namesake dish until earlier this year when my mum ended up making it from one of those recipe kit subscription boxes, and funnily enough, the restaurant announced it's opening that very same week. It felt like a strange coincidence, but after devouring my mum's version of the classic Korean dish I had high hopes for visiting the restaurant itself.

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5 Apr 2018

5 Goals for Spring

Spring Goals Glasgow Blogger | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Spring Goals Glasgow Blogger | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Apparently, it's spring now.


Although a quick peek at the snow falling outside my window says otherwise. It was going so well - the daylight hours were getting longer, daffodils were starting to appear and the sun was trying it's very best to shine - but now the snow is back, and I'm bloody freezing. Maybe one day I'll be able to start a blog post without talking about the weather, but today is not that day.

Anyway, when the first of April rolled around I was more than ready for a fresh month, and a new quarter of the year, to begin. 2018 has been a pretty good year - especially in comparison to last year - but the end of March was really difficult and it kind of floored me. I took a couple of weeks to pull my thoughts together and recharge, so now I'm feeling a lot more like myself again and have started to get back into the swing of things once again.

With that in mind, I wanted to do a bit of forward thinking about what I want to achieve in the next quarter of the year and set some goals for the season ahead. I like setting myself goals, because they give me some much-needed direction and focus, as well as giving me something to look back on and benchmark my progress against.
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3 Apr 2018

72 Hours in Barcelona

3 Days in Barcelona Budget | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
3 Days in Barcelona Budget | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
3 Days in Barcelona Budget | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
3 Days in Barcelona Budget | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

I take my camera nearly everywhere with me.

Just not to Barcelona, apparently.

In a bizarre twist of fate, I somehow managed to remember my charger and a spare lens - which I usually forget to bring - just not the most important part of the equation. I realised halfway into my journey down to Prestwick Airport, by which stage it was waaaaay too late to turn back and right my wrongs.

I suppose it's lucky that just a couple of weeks earlier I'd treated myself to an early upgrade and picked up a brand new iPhone, with a supposedly better camera than my last phone, that was just dying to be tested out. It's also lucky that I'd taken the world's smallest handbag away with me, which barely fit my camera in, to begin with, so would have been an absolute nightmare to deal with in a city that is notorious for its pickpockets.

And you know what? I think it stood up to the challenge pretty well. I was able to capture a few more spontaneous moments, whipping my phone out in a flash instead of lining up the shot meticulously with my camera, and I felt a lot more "free" as a result. Looking at the photos now that I'm home, I don't feel like they're really lacking at all. In fact, I think at times the iPhone captured colour much better than my camera would have - which is ideal in a vibrant city like Barcelona.

But you can be the judge of that, because here are lots of photos from my trip to Barcelona. I would have posted these weeks ago, but I'm in denial that my one holiday of the year is over already, and have not been emotionally stable enough to write this post.
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27 Mar 2018

Everything I've Read so Far in 2018

Best Books to Read in 2018 | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Best Books to Read in 2018 | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

I've definitely found my groove with reading.

I've always been a bookworm, but I'm one of those people who will read four books in one weekend and then won't touch a book for a month. This year, I wanted to be a bit more consistent with my reading habits, mostly because it helps me tear myself away from my phone. In an attempt to make a serious dent in my ever-growing to-read list I decided to double my Goodreads 2018 Reading Challenge and go for 40 books instead of my usual 20.

Looking back at my Goodreads account - which I've had since 2014 - I typically read an average of 30 books in a year, so I think 40 is doable if I'm just a bit more consistent with my reading. Now that we're a quarter of the way into the year I thought I'd pause and share everything I've read so far in 2018, partly as a way to document it, but also to share some really good books I've found.

So far, I've read 12 books and I'm three books ahead of schedule. I have my next four or so books sitting by my bed ready to go, and I'll no doubt be ordering more in the very near future. If like me, you spend the majority of your income on books then you might want to get your bank card at the ready for this post, because there are some great reads ahead...
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15 Mar 2018

Thoughts on Oversharing Online

Oversharing Online | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Oversharing Online | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

 I tweet a lot.

One of my resolutions for this year was to spend less time live-tweeting my thoughts, but that hasn't really come to fruition. Last week, I had a notification telling me my Twitter account was six years old (my blog account, anyway, my McFly/Katy Perry fan account has been lying unused for a fair bit longer) and that inspired me to whip out my calculator and see just how much I actually tweet. The results? I tweet an average of 28 times a day. TWENTY EIGHT. Which, considering I try to sleep for at least eight hours a day, would suggest I tweet roughly twice an hour, minimum. Oops.

I'm happy to share a lot of my life online and after nearly eight years of running this blog, and god knows how many years spent on Tumblr and Piczo before that, it's become second nature. I think I'm known as a relatively open and honest blogger, which probably stems from my willingness to share when things are a little bit shitty, alongside when life is going well.


And whilst I am very open about the vast majority of my life, I still don't share everything. God only knows what my Twitter feed would look like if I did! I still value my privacy, the privacy of the people around me, and I'm also painfully aware of how annoying I must be to follow on Twitter already.

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13 Mar 2018

A Spring Style Wishlist

Spring Fashion High Street Trends | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog


I find it so difficult to shop for spring because in Scotland the season can bring anything from rain, snow and hail to beautiful sunshine in the space of one day. The unpredictable nature of the weather really isn't reflected in what's on offer on the high street right now, which is either very winter or very summer. Even when shopping for my trip to Barcelona I struggled, because although it's certainly warmer than Glasgow right now, it's still not quite warm enough to be swanning about in summer dresses, either.

So, let's think of this as a "what I would wear if the weather was better" kind of wishlist. Realistically, it's probably more a summer wishlist, because, despite that sunny fortnight that we'll most likely get in April or May, the summer is just as unpredictable as the spring. Although, after that horrific blast of snowy weather we were blessed with at the start of March, we really deserve a decent summer. I'll keep everything crossed. Is there such a thing as a sun dance?

Apparently, I'm into green and yellow right now, who knew? Not me, that's for sure. I think it's a projection of my internal desperation for tropical climes and sunshine. I think I suit yellow, but I don't wear a whole lot of green, so I'm not too sure if it would work for me. Only one way to find out - buy it all and try it on.

That striped wrap dress has been haunting my dreams for weeks now, I should really buy it already.


Shop the Post




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8 Mar 2018

Are my cats happy?

This is a sponsored post
Cat Happiness Whiskas | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Cat Happiness Whiskas | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Cat Happiness Whiskas | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Cat Happiness Whiskas | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

What's really going on in that furry head of theirs?

I think I've got a bit of a reputation for being a cat lady. Not a birthday or a Christmas goes by without an array of cat-themed gifts and cards, and most of my Facebook notifications are from people tagging me in cat videos (not that I'm complaining). People seem to be quite surprised when I tell them I love dogs, for some reason.

I've had cats my entire life, and I can't imagine my life without them now. Despite 22 years of cat ownership, there's one thing that still eludes me to this very day - what are they thinking? I like to think that I know my cats quite well, but you still never really know what's running through their minds as they gallop around the house at 4am.

Last week marked an entire year since the night we first brought the gruesome twosome - Bonnie and Clyde - home from the shelter. When the photos popped up on my Facebook memories I couldn't quite believe how small they were at around six months old, but I was mostly shocked that a whole year had passed in the blink of an eye. Whilst it feels like no time at all since we adopted them, it also feels like they've been part of the family forever.

Before Bonnie and Clyde, we had Ginger. Ginger was an old boy, we rescued him when he was around six to eight years old, and he lived a long and happy life. He was lazy, loved cuddles and slept for the majority of the day, so bringing two lively kittens into our house was a bit of a shock to the system. They settled in within a matter of hours and have ruled the roost ever since, but still, I find myself wondering what they're thinking and if they're really happy living here.

That's why, when I was first introduced to Whiskas Kat Institute of Technology (or K.I.T) I was instantly drawn to the concept of cat happiness and their video on the subject. I thought I knew a lot about cats and their body language, but even I managed to learn some new things about decoding their actions in their video, so let's take a look. Any excuse for a blog post full of cat photos, right?
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6 Mar 2018

All we have is this moment

Mom Jeans Styling | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Mom Jeans Styling | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Mom Jeans Styling | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

I finally found the one...

The perfect pair of jeans, that is - I found Paddy a good while ago now (awwww how cute am I, please buy me pizza Paddy). I'd been trying to find a pair of mom-style jeans that I could actually squeeze my arse into for three or four years, and I have many vivid memories of trying on pair after pair in the Topshop changing rooms whilst I still lived in Aberdeen. It wasn't meant to be, and I kind of gave up trying, until I'd heard from Kat that ASOS stocked some pretty decent jeans, and I decided to give them a try.


Jeans - ASOS; Blouse - Zara (similar here); Belt - ASOS
Trainers - Adidas via ASOS; Sunglasses - Primark
Necklaces - Kate Spade and Thomas Sabo (old)



Thanks to the wonder that is ASOS Premier, the Farleigh Slim Mom Jeans were in my life less than 24 hours later, and it's been love ever since. They're not quite as pronounced a "mom" style as I originally wanted, but the relaxed fit and high waist have stolen my heart and I rarely wear anything else these days. It's been a long time since I've strayed from classic black skinny jeans as I felt they were the only style that suited me, but over the past year, I've grown to love a blue wash.

These jeans don't make me look like a supermodel, but they certainly make me feel sassy as hell. As does this leopard print blouse. A couple of years ago you wouldn't have caught me dead in an outfit like this, as I was forever trying to hide my big arse and opted for outfits that skimmed over my thighs, but as I grow that little bit older I definitely give less of a shit.

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1 Mar 2018

Murrayshall House Hotel, Perth

Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Murrayshall House Hotel Review Dinner Bed Breakfast Perth | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

With Paddy moving down south last year, our staycations have been few and far between. It's been difficult to coordinate any time away amongst his visits home and my odd weekend in the Midlands, so our love of visiting nice hotels and escaping for a weekend has been less indulged over the past 12 months. In a change to our usual programming, we actually managed to fit in a night away on Paddy's most recent visit home and took my lovely new car for a trip up to Perth.

The Hotel

The reason? To visit the recently refurbished Murrayshall House Hotel. The hotel is perched in the Perthshire hills, not far from the town of Scone and just over an hours drive from Glasgow. Situated on a 36-acre estate, the hotel is home to two golf courses, an array of rooms, a cocktail lounge, a restaurant and a brasserie.

The building itself is beautiful, and the grounds even more so. We were lucky in that we visited during a surprisingly Spring-like weekend so got to see the hills bathed in sunlight, which is a far cry from the Scottish weather at the moment. After checking in around 4pm we had a quick wander around the grounds to soak up some of that crisp Scottish air and have a bit of a nosey at what was going on.

The main car park was full when we arrived and it was clear that the Murrayshall is a favourite for many visitors. We ended up parking round at the back of the hotel, which would appear to be where the clubhouse for the golf course is, and as we walked back to the main door we could see just how busy it was inside.
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27 Feb 2018

Being an "Honest" Blogger

Are bloggers honest? | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Are bloggers honest? | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

What does an honest blogger look like?

Honesty is something I value in a blogger, but it's also something I think about a lot. How do you define an honest blogger? Is it someone who lays their soul bare, telling you about every inch of their lives in great detail? Is it someone who doesn't gloss over the shitty bits of their day, shows you life behind the flatlay and tells you when things aren't going quite so well?

No, I don't think that's really it. I don't think you have to tell your audience every little thing about you to be an "honest" blogger. You can be honest and only show what you want to show. Your platform is exactly that - your platform - to do with as you see fit. I share a lot of my life online, but there are some things that I just don't publicise. I like to keep some things private, does that make me dishonest? Get ready, there's an incoherent ramble coming...

As much as a value my privacy, I do also value my integrity, and I like to think that shows. I'll always disclose my partnerships because I am proud to be offered the chance to work with businesses and brands I admire. I'll happily tell you when I've been paid to create a post, again out of pride in my abilities to grow my blog to a point where I will be paid by brands. I spend hours of my life creating content for you to indulge in for free - so why shouldn't I make some pocket money for that? After eight years of pouring blood, sweat and tears into turning this blog into something that brings joy to not just me, but other people too, I think it's allowed.

If you follow me on Twitter, you will quite likely see me ranting about bloggers who don't disclose their affiliate links, in between ponderings on the latest book I'm reading or what I fancy for my tea. I have very strong feelings about this, but even I slip up sometimes. I've forgotten to add the disclosure to my tweets or to the bottom of a blog post, I'm only human. It is all too easy to forget when adding affiliate links is second nature, but I don't think forgetting makes me dishonest, either.
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20 Feb 2018

The Ultimate "Lazy Girl Chic" Wardrobe Essential

How to style leather trousers casual outfit | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
How to style leather trousers casual outfit | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
How to style leather trousers casual outfit | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Do you ever make up an outfit in your head then get disappointed when it doesn't actually exist?

Yup, me too. Flashback to winter 2016, when I was desperately hunting for the perfect pair of faux leather trousers, which I pictured wearing with a plain white blouse, a sassy leopard print biker jacket and my faithful old trainers. I don't know quite who I thought I was, but I was determined to find this outfit and wear the shit out of it. Lo and behold, though, those leather trousers turned out to be ever the evasive wardrobe essential, and I just couldn't find the pair.

The thing is, I love being comfortable. Like, really comfortable. So I wasn't willing to squeeze myself into a pair of skin-tight leather trews and have my very own Ross Geller moment just for the sake of looking fashionable. At this point, leather trousers on the high street were pretty much limited to super skinny, super tight or super shiny - and that wasn't the look I was going for.

But then, one day, everything changed. Back at the start of last year, I came across a pair of trousers hanging about on ASOS (as per usual). They weren't too shiny, they had an elasticated, paper bag waist for those pizza binges, and most importantly - they were actually comfortable. I've worn them to death over the last year, and so here we are, with an entire blog post dedicated to the joy of these leather trousers.

Outfit Details

Trousers - ASOS (alternatives below!), Top - Monki, Shoes - Office
Bag - Kate Spade (this colour is out of stock - here are some alternatives
Necklaces - Kate Spade & Thomas Sabo (old)

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15 Feb 2018

Saying Goodbye to Childhood Friendships

Friendship Breakups | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Friendship Breakups | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

 Friendship, it's a funny old thing.

As a naive teenager, I sincerely thought that the friends I had in school would be the friends I had for life. Like many teenage girls, I had numerous "best friends", with the length of our devoted friendship lasting anything from a few weeks to a few years, until some petty argument got in the way and things fizzled. Throughout this time, however, I had some long-lasting, consistent friendships that have followed me from primary school right through to university. We were set for life, with an unbreakable bond that can only be created by over a decade of friendship.

Or so I thought, anyway.

I realised last year (or maybe the year before that, who knows) that one of these friendships had come to an end. There was no blowout argument, no big betrayal and no emotional parting of the ways - it just stopped. To be honest, it was probably a long time coming, but that doesn't make it any easier to deal with.

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13 Feb 2018

Blog and Beyond

Blogging Tips Resources | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

This Year's Pet Project

I've become increasingly aware of the fact that I often launch things or decide to do things, mention them on Twitter, and leave it at that. It's become a bit of a habit, so I thought I'd sit down and write a quick post to fill you in on some of the things I'm working on for 2018 and beyond. I decided towards the end of last year that I wanted to expand on my blogging tips offering - as a bit of an extension from my newsletter, and as a result, I've ended up with a few new things on the go.

The first and probably most notable thing to mention is the extension of my freelance business, Content by Charlotte, which I've expanded to include some specific services for bloggers focused on helping you build your blog, create better content and get to grips with social media. There are three main packages, which are currently fully booked until the start of April, and there's already a waiting list. I've been overwhelmed with the response to these and the feedback I've had so far has been so kind that it's made me a tad teary-eyed.

Want to grab a slice of the action? Get in touch!

Next up on my list of things to tackle was my blogging tips newsletter, which I was sending out each month and only really promoting on Twitter - oops. My newsletter was originally nameless and didn't really fit in with my brand across my blog or my business anymore, so something had to give. Enter Blog and Beyond, my shiny new newsletter that covers all things blogging... and beyond.

If you want to sign up for this twice-monthly newsletter and get your very own dose of inspiration straight to your inbox on a dreary Monday morning - you can do so here. It's jam-packed full of advice on how to make the most of digital, how to boss your blog and just some general life inspiration too. I'll be sharing my favourite small businesses, brilliant posts from the babes that are bossing blogging and some of my ride or die resources for killing it online. I adore writing it and can't wait to see how it continues to grow each month.

Sign up for Blog and Beyond here

I wanted to turn my newsletter into more of a community and use it to create a platform for discussion beyond my own thoughts and opinions, so I decided that I'd bring the conversation onto social media, too. I love finding new Instagram accounts and, despite the algorithm, it's actually one of my favourite accounts for engagement at the moment - particularly with Instagram stories. It felt natural, really, to start a little hashtag so that I could find some more likeminded folk and look at pretty pictures.

So, #blogandbeyond was born. The name for the hashtag actually came about first, I just realised it would work well for my newsletter too. I wanted to create a place where people could share both the gorgeous flatlays, sassy outfit shots and real-life snapshots too. I love browsing through the hashtag when I'm on Instagram and I've found some amazing accounts as a result! I share some of my favourite snaps each week over on my Instagram stories and I include more brilliant shots in the Blog and Beyond newsletter, too.

Check out the #blogandbeyond hashtag for some photo inspiration here!

And as if that wasn't enough to keep up with already, I decided to give myself even more work and start a Facebook group too. No, I don't know how I manage either. It's a good thing I love what I do, huh?! The Content Crowd is a little community that's all about collaboration and chatting with likeminded bloggers and business owners.

There are daily discussions on everything from taxes to where to buy the best stationery, with plenty of opportunities to share your own stuff and connect with other people too. This is where I tend to give little sneak peeks of upcoming content, get people involved with the newsletter and I have sneaky discounts for my business in there sometimes - if that's your sort of thing.

Come on over and join in the discussion at The Content Crowd


So that's a quick rundown of the little projects I have running alongside Colours and Carousels at the moment, but the fun doesn't stop there. I've got a lot more to come this year (hopefully) and I'm so bloody excited to share it all with you when the time comes.

This is going to be a good year for me, I can feel it.
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8 Feb 2018

Seven Happy Things

Seven Happy Things | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Back to Basics

Sometimes when I write blog posts, I feel like they have to be these epic novellas that cover every single possible point on a subject, and I end up spending entire evenings pouring my heart out on the screen. I love it, but I also love those little "bitty" posts where I just share some nice things that made me smile. I used to share "happy things" on a semi-regular basis but fell away from it for some reason or another.

One of my favourite bloggers, Kirsty from The Monday Project, writes a weekly series where she shares ten things from the last week and I look forward to reading it every single week. It's the kind of post I miss writing, so I thought I'd share a few of the things that have brought a smile to my face recently - without the pressure I put on myself to write well over a thousand words a piece.

1. Business is goooood

I don't think I really talk about my business enough on here, which is something I want to change. If you didn't already know, I launched my freelance digital marketing business - Content by Charlotte - back in October last year, and things are going pretty well so far. I absolutely love the work I do and I get to work with some really excellent people, so it's all good.

At the start of January, I launched my packages for bloggers so that I could do more work with snazzy bloggers and help them figure out how to rock the blogosphere. I was really nervous about launching it (and the Facebook group to match) but I've been so overwhelmed with the lovely, supportive responses I've had since. It's got to the point, in fact, that I'm now completely booked up for February and March, and I've already started taking names for the April waiting list. It's slightly crazy, but I love it and I'm proud of myself.
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6 Feb 2018

Is Blogging Full-Time Really the Dream?

Blogging Full Time | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Blogging Full Time | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Full-time blogging, sounds good right?

A lot of people seem to think I'm a "full-time blogger" these days. I guess I do fit the mould, I have my freelance business and my income does come from both this and my blog, so it's an easy conclusion to come to. Sure, I probably invest enough hours into my blog to qualify as working on it "full-time", but it's not my main gig right now. I didn't think it was an unknown fact that I'm still studying, and my "full-time" consists of lectures and labs and reports and assessments instead of flatlays and photo shoots and writing and creating.

Obviously, I do spend a lot of my time doing those things, but it got me thinking - do I want to be a full-time blogger? And, honestly, the answer is no. I don't even want to be a full-time freelancer, not forever anyway. As much as I adore what I do right now, that's just not how I see my life panning out.

Why do you do it now, then?

It suits me perfectly right now. I get to set my own workload, make money doing something I love and work in an industry that's relevant to my degree. I get to choose my hours to suit my classes, I don't have to sacrifice my weekends to retail anymore, and I can work in my pyjamas if I want to, too. 

Not only does it suit my life as a student, but it also works pretty damn well alongside living with chronic illness. The flexibility of blogging and freelancing means that I can work at times that best suit me, meaning that if I'm having a bad pain day or feeling particularly foggy, I can give my body the rest it so desperately craves.

In return, I have a much better work-life balance. Yes, I do work a lot more than I did with my four hour retail contract, but I work when it's best for me instead of when my name is down on the rota. I'm able to work in tandem with my reserved energy levels to create a happier, more productive me. Being able to give this consideration to how I'm feeling means I'm much more able to spend my "down time" doing things. Gone are the days where I'd come in from work and crash on the sofa for the rest of the night, unable to muster the energy to do anything, and they've been replaced with more time to spend with friends... or to spend on the sofa anyway.

Blogging Full Time | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Blogging Full Time | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Why It's Not My Forever

I mean, that sounds like a pretty jammy set up, right? It probably sounds crazy that I don't want to do this forever, but hear me out.

As much as I love what I do, there are some downsides that come to the self-employed life. It is stressful. Chasing up invoices and dealing with emails, spending each day wondering if this job will be your last and if you're actually any good at what you do. It all takes its toll, particularly when I'm a pretty anxious person in the first place. It's not something I see myself coping well with for the rest of my life, as I crave stability, feedback and routine.

And even though my blog is essentially a business, it's still my creative outlet. It's my baby, and I don't want to be at the point where I'm driving myself demented trying to force myself to write when I just don't feel like it. I don't want this blog to become something I resent, it's my place to escape and that is exactly how I want it to stay.

My Dream Future

With that being said, I do see my blog and my business playing a large part in my future. I would be so chuffed if I could keep it all going part-time alongside something else. I don't talk a whole lot about my career aspirations, aside from the fact that I want to work in digital marketing, but I'd actually really like to be a lecturer. I love teaching people about digital marketing, so I hope that one day I'll be at a point where I can do that for a living.

If you were to ask me right now where I see myself, career-wise, in ten years time I'd say working a couple of days a week as a digital marketing lecturer, then spending the rest of my week working on my blog and my business. I'd love to do some brand consultancy in the distant future (but that's a long way away) and generally just spend the majority of my time teaching people to kill it online. My mornings will be reserved for walks around the park with my sausage dogs, though.

But who knows, things change. Maybe in ten years time, I'll be the next Zoella, and I'll be eating these words. 


What do you think, would you ever want to blog full-time?


Photos by the babe that is Claire White
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1 Feb 2018

Five Beauty Favourites

Five Beauty Favourites Glasgow Blogger | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Five Beauty Favourites Glasgow Blogger | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog
Five Beauty Favourites Glasgow Blogger | Colours and Carousels - Scottish Lifestyle, Beauty and Fashion blog

Back when I used to enjoy making YouTube videos, I shared my favourite products on a monthly basis - because I'm a walking cliche. Since I fell away from the platform, I feel like I don't share my favourites as much as I could, so I wanted to sit down and have a chat about five of the products that are impressing me most right now. For the most part, they're new to me, but there is one that's been a staple in my routine for nearly four years now, too.

I used to be obsessed with trying the newest everything and I just had to own every shade going, but over the past few months, I've become a lot better at actually sticking to a routine and finding the products that work for me. For the most part, it's because of my mission to reduce my spending, so I'm trying to actually use things up instead of jumping on the next bandwagon, but it's also down to the fact that I've found some really damn good products.

Let's dive in, shall we?

The Cleanser

I'll start off with old faithful, The Body Shop Camomile Cleansing Oil. Regulars around these parts have probably heard me rave about this before, as it's been a firm favourite of mine for a good few years now. I fell away from it for a while, trying out some alternatives, but none have impressed me quite as much as this beauty.

This cleansing oil ticks all my boxes. It's gentle, soothing and refreshing, leaving my skin silky soft and feeling super clean. It cuts through even the heaviest of makeup with ease, without irritating my skin in the slightest. The pump leaks a little which is a tad frustrating (but after a good ten or so bottles I've just come to accept), although it's nothing major.

I've never found a cleansing oil that works quite as well as this one, so I'd recommend it to all and sundry. At £12, it's pretty purse friendly, and a bottle can last me up to three months. Plus, The Body Shop nearly always have some sort of offer on and do 25% off for students, so you can usually snap it up for cheaper on the website.
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