Now Christmas has gone, winter is horrible. It’s cold, dark and wet. You seem to have a cold every other week, and your skin is dry flaky and sore. You may be dieting after Christmas or find that you are covered in spots after a little festive overindulgence and to top it all off, you are absolutely broke. But, with weeks left until the weather starts to improve, it’s worth making the most of the season and enjoying its benefits.


While saving money, losing weight or lowering your astronomical energy bills might be major concerns that take a lot of time and effort, your skin doesn’t need to be. While your skin might currently be red, dry and sore, or still oily from too much Christmas cake, with just a little effort, it can be soft, youthful and bright. Here’s what you need to do.

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Focus on Problems


The first thing that you need to do is take a good look at yourself. Do you have any spots that are infected and need treatment? Are there any moles you are worried about? Do you want to lose some weight after the holidays? Or should you see someone Allure Plastic Surgery about an area that you’ve never liked? Don’t just ignore the issues. A simple skincare routine can help, but if there’s anything deeper, get help.


Drink Water


The next thing you should do is increase your water intake. One of the main reasons our skin dries out is that it isn’t getting enough hydration. Try to drink eight glasses a day. But be careful not to drink too much caffeine, alcohol or sugary drinks as they can do more damage and hurt your complexion.




Another way to give your skin a hydration boost is by moisturizing. Use an all-over moisturizer every morning after you shower as well as a gentle day and night cream on your face. You may also need to take extra care of your hands and lips, which can get very sore and chapped in cold winter weather. Use hand creams and lip balms enriched with shea butter and wear gloves whenever you go outside.


Don’t Forget the SPF


Just because it’s cold out, doesn’t mean the sun can’t damage your skin. In fact, even on a cloudy day, UV rays can be harmful. They may not burn you, but you won’t know what damage is being done until it’s too late. Use a primer or foundation with added SPF even in the winter time.




Many of us are guilty of wearing more makeup in the winter. To cover dark circles and blemishes and give ourselves a healthy glow. But, over time this will make your skin dryer. Try to have a day off every week, and no matter how much makeup you wear, cleanse thoroughly before bed to give your skin a chance to breathe and recover overnight.


Exercise is great. It boosts your circulation, giving your skin a healthier glow and helping with conditions like varicose veins. If you can’t face going outside, try an online video or program.

Do you want to make sure that you wow all of your guests at your next party or dinner party? Well, if so, you need to have a few good classic cocktail recipes up your sleeves. Cocktails always look impressive and there is such a wide range of them that you will be able to find one that suits all of your guests’ taste buds. Here are a few that every adult needs to know.

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The Manhattan

The Manhattan is one of the most sophisticated cocktails out there and you’ll have probably seen it served up on lots of cool TV shows, such as Mad Men. The key to making the best drink is to ensure that you use both sweet and dry vermouth. Here’s a good basic recipe to get you going.

Makes 2 servings:
4 parts whiskey of your choice
2 parts sweet vermouth
2 parts dry vermouth
Dash of Angostura Bitters
Maraschino cherries
Orange peel
Lots of ice

Add whiskey, vermouth, and bitters to a cocktail shaker and shake well.
Rub the rim of a whiskey tumbler with the orange peel. You can then throw away the peel.
Pour the drink into the glass – strain it so you don’t get any ice in with it!
Garnish with a couple of maraschino cherries.

Handy tip: you can save money by making your own maraschino cherries. You just need to buy some fresh cherries and soak them in some maraschino liqueur for a month or so. Voila!

The Martini

There are two martinis that you can make: the traditional one that uses gin, or the vodka martini. You might already be familiar with the vodka martini as it is the prefered drink of James Bond! No matter which tipple you use as the base of your martini, though, you will find that this is one of the simplest of all the classic cocktails to make, so it’s perfect for beginner mixers. Once you’ve mastered the basic recipe, But, for this blog post, I’ll stick to the traditional recipe that uses gin.

Makes 1 serving:
3 parts dry gin
1 part dry vermouth
Pinch of salt
Small strip of lemon peel
Optional olive

Chill the gin and the glass for at least half an hour.
Once chilled enough, dissolve the salt in a small amount of water.
Add the gin, vermouth and salt solution to a cocktail shaker along with plenty of ice. Strain into a martini glass.
Garnish with the lemon peel.
If you prefer, add an olive instead of the lemon peel. If you want to make a dirty martini, then pour a drop of the olive brine into the drink.

Don’t forget that these are just two examples of classic cocktails. There are loads more out there if you research them. You might want to try the Old Fashioned which is another whiskey-based drink, or something less potent such as a margarita. As previously mentioned, you will certainly find a drink that you like as there are so many different recipes out there!

While many people pick US destinations or European countries to visit for their holidays, Australia is often forgotten and it’s difficult to see why. Australian destinations such as Sydney are such wonderful places to visit for a vacation and they certainly need a bit more attention. So to shed some light down under, we’re going to give you six fantastic reasons why you should visit Sydney for your holiday this year. With any luck, you’re going to be booking your flights as soon as you finish reading!

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Image: Pexels


1. It’s wonderful this time of year


For most of us living in the northern hemisphere, we’re suffering from rain, snow and cold weather. Sydney, on the other hand, has its seasons reversed compared to us which means that right now they’re in the middle of a hot and comfortable summer and slowly transitioning into autumn. Want to escape the cold? Then head to Sydney!


2. There are so many beaches


Sydney is on the edge of Australia so it explains why there are so many fantastic beaches. Prepare your suncream and don’t forget your typical beach attire because you’re going to want to explore these golden sands and warm waters all across the coast! The beaches can get packed full of tourists, but luckily there’s plenty of space for everyone to enjoy the sun and do a spot of swimming.


3. Surprisingly affordable


Sydney is really far away for most people living in the northern hemisphere or the west, but even so, tickets to Sydney are surprisingly affordable. You’ll find many cheap flights to Sydney if you look in the right places and things like food and accommodation aren’t much more expensive than what you’d expect at home. As long as you avoid touristy destinations and don’t mind heading to the supermarket now and then to pick up some food, you can get by with relatively little in Sydney.


4. Bustling foodie scene


You might not hear much about Sydney’s foodie scene because it’s still growing, but there are some absolutely fantastic places to eat here. Since it’s so close to Asia, there are many unique Asian dishes to be had an there are western staples mixed in as well. Whether it’s fish and chips or hot dogs and pie, you’ll find classics mixed with unfamiliar fusions all over Sydney.


5. Plenty for kids and adults alike


Sydney is a beautiful location that has plenty of entertainment for both kids and adults alike. Want to spend a day treating the kids? Head over to some of the theme parks and safaris available. Want a private night out with your partner? Then head to one of the glamorous bars or restaurants dotted around Sydney at night for a romantic encounter.


6. Stunning to explore


Take a walk around Sydney and you’ll see tall buildings, beautiful parks and scenery that you will never forget. Sydney is a visually stunning location to view with your own two eyes and there are countless opportunities to take a memorable photograph.


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With international travel more accessible than ever, the attraction of exploring the world is huge. This is something I’ve experienced first hand, and I’m sure many of you readers have too. As for 2018, though, my bucket list begins with five places across America.


Here are the five places I’m hoping to visit over the next 12 months, along with the reasons why.


#1. Atlanta, Georgia


Atlanta, Georgia is a stunning city that has many attractions including the CNN tour, nature parks, and historic venues. Right now, though, the thought of seeing the Atlanta United soccer team is the incentive to visit now. I’m not a huge fan of the sport, but the thought of joining up to 71,000 people inside the Mercedes-Benz Stadium is very exciting. The atmosphere looks incredible from the videos I’ve been shown. As a one-off experience, I’d love to be a part of it.


#2. Orlando, Florida


Orlando is hardly a hidden gem, and most people appreciate the hot weather and plethora of attractions. Still, there’s no doubt that Disneyland and other resorts are perfect places for family reunions and vacations with old friends. The combination of fun and sun forms the recipe for a perfect week away. It might be a little on the expensive side, but it’s certainly on my list for 2018.

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#3. New York City


Even if you’ve been to NYC on multiple occasions, it’s a destination where there’s always something new to see and do. The Manhattan Helicopters tour over the city is top of my bucket list for the next visit. In truth, though, it would take days to compile a list of all of the attractions awaiting in the Big Apple. Even if it’s only a, ahem, flying visit, I’ll certainly be spending some time in the city that never sleeps in the next 12 months.


#4. Salt Lake City, Utah


Utah is an incredible place to unleash your explorational side, starting with the Mighty 5 national parks. However, Salt Lake is a city that appeals due to the concoction of natural treasures, historic venues, and 2002 Winter Olympics venues. In truth, staying at the Park City Marriott just outside of the main city is probably a little more appealing. Nonetheless, a few days of relaxation there, combined with a few days of city life excitement is sure to provide a winning solution.


#5. Honolulu, Hawaii   



Hawaii’s unique charm is something that naturally appeals to most travel enthusiasts, and I’m no different. Seeing the Pearl Harbour WWII memorials is an incentive that steps away from the prospect of sitting on the beaches. Still, there’s no denying that Waikiki Beach and the other luxury venues of sun, sea and sand are the main attraction. My only worry is that I’ll never come back!


Realistically, I might only get to visit two or three of those places. Still, it’s nice for a girl to dream.


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