SEPTEMBER PAYDAY WISHLIST


Payday, at laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaast!!

With NYC, unexpected speeding fines (whoops) and a higher than usual EE phone bill I have been pretty fucking poor this month and its no fun.. no fun at all.

Anyway. I've got everything crossed than within the next week or so, loads of my invoices will be paid and I can celebrate buy buying loads of stuff I've had my eye on for a while.

Mango just keeps getting better and better. ASOS is bae and will remain bae forever. Topshop have stepped up their game and EGO shoes have camouflage boots!!!! This is why I will never be rich - I just love to shop. 



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YOU'RE THE ONE THAT I WANT







Photography by JKG


ZARA Velvet Top (alternative linked)
BOOHOO Mom Jeans (DIY'd)*

This isn't really a typical me outfit, but sometimes playing dress up and experimenting with my style is something I really enjoy. Although I always go back to high waisted trousers, crop tops and trainers, I do like to play around with different styles. Fashion should never be boring and although we all have our go to outfits, stepping out the box every now and then is fun. With high street stores like ASOS, Boohoo & Topshop having affordable items inspired by the runway, I often get sucked in to certain trends. Ripped hems & loafers being one of them. 



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5 SHAVING HACKS EVERY GIRL SHOULD KNOW



This post is sponsored by Dorco Razors.


1. Exfoliate
Exfoliating a day before you plan on shaving, helps to prepare your skin. It buffs away dead skin which helps to avoid any shaving cuts or nicks, and it also lifts your hairs which allows a closer shave.

2. Use Coconut Oil
Now I'm not gonna lie.. I use coconut for everything lol, but its extra freaking amazing for shaving. Instead of using shower gel, or shampoo, or good ol' fashioned shaving cream, wack a bit of coconut oil on. You will feel as smooth as a baby dolphin. Its life changing.. honestly & truly. 

3. Use High Quality Razors
Gone are the days where you'd buy a pack of cheap razors from Tesco for £2 that literally felt like you were using a hedge trimmer on your legs. Now that I'm trying the whole adulting thing out, I really feel like my life is together when I've got a great razor to hand. Lately, I've been using Dorco Razor Eve 6 which you can buy here. - the experts in shaving technology. With 6 blades split into a 3 blade format and a flexy head attached, you can contour shave to your body. 
I literally shave everything; legs, armpits, arms & even my big hairy toes LOL LOL LOL & using Dorco razors puts my mind at ease that I'm not going to give myself any cuts or little nicks. You guys know I also have pretty sensitive skin so I'm prone to rashes and redness - especially when shaving. The Dorco Eve 6 has a moisturising band with aloe vera, vitamin E & lavender which calms and protects even the most sensitive skin. Its also a razor you can use on the go too (which is basically my life) as the technology enables you to get a quick but close shave, which is perfect for us girl bosses or busy mums. Lets face it.. We don't always have the time for a pamper do we? Im also a little bit lazy and theres a billion other things I'd rather be doing than shaving my legs. 




4. Change Them Often
Using old razors leaves your beautiful skin vulnerable to cuts and and niggles. Its also pretty unhygienic too! Changing your razor or razor head after 4/5 uses enables you to get the cleanest, closest shave at all times. Dorco Razors offers a subscription service for £5.45 a month or £16.35 a year which is great for me and other busy women. I often forget to buy new razors, and I end up having a moment in the shower of 'I think I've been using this razor for about a year and thats actually disgusting, I am vile'. So having my razors delivered straight to my door is just one less thing I have to worry about. YAS!!

5. Moisturise Straight After
As soon as I'm out of the shower, the first thing I do is reach for a moisturiser. Applying a thick moisturiser all over, paying close attention to the areas you've shaved, allows your skin to recover. The lotion can sink into your skin, adding even more smoothness. This is where I climb into bed and roll around because shaved skin against clean bed sheets is one of the greatest things in life. Am I right or am I right?

Thank you to Dorco Razors for collaborating with me on this post.

You can purchase Dorco Razors here and with code GRACIE10 you will receive 10% off.  

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MISSGUIDED 50% OFF SALE TOP PICKS



When Missguided announce a sale, everything stops. Panic mode sets in & your hands get a little bit sweaty. Although Missguided can be pretty hit and miss, I am all about a bargain. With 50% off you can literally buy skinny jeans for about £14 lol (and btw the skinny jeans are amazing, I have them).

Anyway.. This is for a limited time only & Missguided usually sell out of their stock pretty fast, so be quick!

50% off code is PANIC50.


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14 THOUGHTS EVERY GIRL HAS WHEN SHES HAVING HER VAGINA WAXED


A few weeks ago I had my first ever hot wax hollywood, including my crack - I'm currently a plucked chicken and I'm loving it! (soz for the TMI but what else did you expect from me lol). Ive had the good ol' fashion waxing strips before which literally made me want to die due to the pain, so I was super excited to see what hot wax was all about.

SPOILER: It was way better than waxing strips because hot wax only pulls out the actual hair, the strips pull off the top layer of your skin too..... shudders.

I was invited into Ministry Of Waxing on The Kings Road and I honestly had the most wonderful time. I felt comfortable and at ease, and for some reason, a random girl looking at my A hole as my cheeks are spread wasn't actually that awkward lol.

I recorded my reaction here. So please go and give that a watch because its pretty funny lol. I was swearing and sweating but overall - I would 100% do it all again. Afterwards I literally felt like my vagina was lighter and had lost weight LOL! Everything in that region was so smooth.

I felt like I really had my shit together. Im an adult now. A real fucking woman lol. (obviously being hairy is cool too).

At the time I didn't verbalise all the thoughts going round in my head, mainly because I was wondering which part of my vagina was going to sting next. 


So here they are..


1. I really hope my vagina doesn't smell. Its hot, I've been sweating ALL day and if it does smell thats fucking embarrassing. 

2. I wonder what she thinks of my vagina. Is it weird looking? Is it pretty? Is it ugly. 

3. I actually like my vagina but my god is it hairy! I bet she thinks its hairy.

4. Im literally as hairy as a monkey right now. WHY AM I LIKE THIS. KILL ME!

5. I bet she's seen so many vaginas. I wonder if she's seen any weird ones.

6. OMG WHAT IF MY VAGINA IS A WEIRD ONE? 

7. FUCKING HELL. 

8. This bitch is hurting me on purpose I know it. She needs to be more gentle.

9. *sweat trickles down my head* Okay.. this hot wax is actually hotter than the sun.

10. FUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! My poor vag lips. 

11. Why am I doing this? It better look amazing afterwards because this is fucking ridiculous.

12. I hate being a woman. I literally hate it.

13. *looks at smooth vagina in the mirror*.. You know what? It wasn't even that bad.

14. I can't wait to show bae when I get home. 


#girlproblemz


(Although these thoughts genuinely went through my mind I really would like to go back)

If you'd like to pop along to get your muff buffed then you can get 10% off any beauty treatment using my code GRACE10, at any of the London locations. 

Ministry of Waxing Discount Code Terms & Conditions:
Can only be used once and not in conjunction with any other offer. Valid until 31/12/16. If booked at Ministry Of Waxing's Flagship Chelsea location, discount code also entities you to one free iced coffee at A Wanted Man Cafe.










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29 PAIRS OF BOOTS YOU ABSOLUTELY NEED THIS SEASON



Anyone else ridiculously excited for boot season or is it just me? 

Although I wear a few staple boots all year round, as soon as A/W arrives, I'm ready to add new ones into my collection. Whether that be, black, chunky, statement, heeled, flats, leather or texture. Theres no discrimination around these parts.

My go to brands for footwear are ASOS, Office, New Look & Topshop so you'll find that most of the boots shown are from there. As well as River Island & Mango because why not?



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HOW TO MAKE MORE MONEY FROM YOUR BLOG


I know a lot of people don't particularly like talking about money, but I Grace Victory am not one of those people lol. Im not really sure why. It might be because I grew up pretty poor so becoming my own boss and living pretty comfortably is bloody exciting. But tbh, I'm just nosy AF and hearing what other people earn interests me.

Blogging is booming! There is a lot of money to be made and theres enough of it for everyone (if you want it bad enough, work hard enough and have self belief etc etc) - you get the point right?

I've done a post on making money before, you can read it here (its good I swear), but I wanted to share with you the ways I have learned MYSELF, how to generate more money. I have a feeling these tips will probably be completely new to you, so get your pen and paper at the ready, make a cuppa or a cocktail & get ready to learn how I doubled my blog revenue. 

These tips are easy to use & can be applied to your posts NOW! YASSSSS

Triple Threat Links
For outfit posts, linking items 3x over increases sales shopped through your blog. Simple links, conversational links & visual links. Take a look at my recent outfit post to familiarise yourself with what I mean. Doing this allows your reader to navigate your outfit post with ease and choice.

 For example;






Pay Per Click, Not By Sale
ShopStyle is an affiliate company that every blogger needs to use. Most affiliate links only generate money when a sale has been made (Skimlinks & RewardStyle for example), however ShopStyle generates money by clicks too. MIND = BLOWN right? Its a small amount, I'm talking about 4p per click but (if my calculations are correct) 4p X 1000 clicks = £400!?! So if you use ShopStyle links in outfit posts, lookbook videos or in your Instagram bio, you could rack up quite a bit of money. 


Seasonal and/or Payday Wishlist's
Payday wishlist's and posts such as 'My September ASOS Wishlist' do ridiculously well on my blog. They're actually my most viewed posts! I think my audience is like me - always looking for a bargain, enjoys fashion & looking good & wastes way too many evenings online shopping. Im guessing the visual boutique of the items draw people in, as they can see what they look like on. I know I'm more likely to spend money on something if I can imagine how I could wear it and style it up.



Repeat Popular Content
Pay attention to what your followers want by checking your analytics and stats. If your followers enjoy hack type posts, then do more of them - its that simple. Obviously traffic doesn't always convert to revenue, but we all know that the more traffic you have, the more likely you are to make some extra dollar dollar. 


Utilise Your Titles

Ive always known the importance of an eye catching title. Not only does it make your followers click to read, it can also get the attention of people who haven't read your blog before. Lets face it, we all want new followers right? A handy tool I've been using is Headline Analyser which scores your headline quality for increased traffic & SEO value etc. I thought it was a waste of time until I applied it to my posts & now its a part of my blog writing schedule. Its a really quick and helpful way to boost your posts. A catchy title always grabs my attention so now I try to do that too!




I hope this post was honest and helpful in terms of increasing revenue through your blog. Blogging isn't about the money but its important to me to share useful tips because like I said, theres enough of the cake for everyone ;)
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3 NON TOURISTY PLACES TO EAT IN NYC


One of the best things about New York is definitely the food, dribble dribble. However I often find touristy spots are crowded, overpriced and generally lacking in good quality food. 

Luckily for me, my friends live in NYC so I experience the best of the best (in my opinion but I'm right lol) and we usually only eat at places that are undiscovered & family run.

When I'm visiting, I try and immerse myself into what real New Yorkers live like, as authentic culture, wherever I am, is really important to me. So on that note..

Here are 3 absolutely amazing places to eat in NYC that tourists don't particularly know of.. yet! 


For brunch.





Solomon & Kuff | Harlem New York, 2331 12th Avenue | Caribbean Cuisine
If you love boozy brunches (the rum cocktails were so strong I almost died lol) dancehall and bashment music, plus insanely great food - this is where you need to be. Located in the heart of Harlem, right near the river, Solomon & Kuff puts the perfect Caribbean twist on traditional stateside brunches. Adding jerk seasoning to their chicken batter & using yams as their starch in pancakes, its definitely a place that ticks off all your taste bud requirements.

I opted for the chicken & waffles, which came with a side of hot sauce, a jug of maple syrup & topped with walnuts and bananas. Taking the whole savoury and sweet thang to different heights. Great taste, great portions & great atmosphere. The chicken was perfectly golden and crunchy on the outside too- yum!

The only disappointment was the service. Our waitress was super lazy and gave off the opinion that she just didn't want to be there. I'd still go back though ;)


For lunch.




Cafe Rue Dix | 1451 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY | French & Seneglas├že Cuisine
After waking up from a nap my girlfriend Akua said to me 'Grace, I really need the best french toast in New York so lets go to Brooklyn'. Me being me was obviously all over it, so off we went. On a quiet (as quiet as Brooklyn can be) residential street, a cute, little spot called Cafe Rue Dix can be found. With distinctive and unique herbal teas on the menu, as well as traditional african decor dotted around, its a far cry from New York City's typical tourist diners. 

Me and Akua shared the french toast as well as a salmon omelette with avo on toast and a side of fries (we like to eat lol). Although I wasn't a fan of the omelette (not a fan of omelettes in general) the avo on toast was so.much.yes. Spicy and tangy & perfectly ripe. But the icing on the bread (did ya see what I did there?) was definitely the french toast. Super sweet but not too sickly, bursting with flavour and drizzled in some sort of maple syrup/creme caramel hybrid, it was honestly an absolute joy to devour. 

A place filled with character, friendly staff and affordable prices. Winner winner!


For dinner.





Pilar Cuban Eatery | 397 Greene Ave, Bed Stuy, Brooklyn | Cuban & Spanish Cuisine
Words will never describe just how INCREDIBLEEEEE this meal was. Pilar Cuban Eatery is an authentic Cuban & Spanish restaurant, again, situated in Brooklyn. We originally planned to go here for brunch but we didn't arrive until 4pm lol. 

My dish - VACA FRITA! if you visit, you must order it. Steak, rice, beans & avocado - a combination I didn't know I needed in my life, until I tried it. I have no idea what they put on their steak or avo but they were legit one of the tastiest things I have ever eaten. My entire meal was super flavoursome, rich but not heavy & downright moreish. The steak was proper juicy and cooked to perfection. I was so impressed with this spot and really recommend it if you want simple, authentic but delicious Cuban food.

Now for dessert.. We ordered 3 because we're fat and fabulous and love to eat haha. Guava cream cheese pie, passionfruit flan & churros. Now tbh, I really didn't enjoy these desserts. The consistency of flan makes me want to die LOL and cream cheese in a dessert just doesn't sit well with me or my stomach lol (unless its cheesecake obvs). The churros were okay, but nothing special. Im really picky with desserts and theres plenty of other places in NYC that do desserts better. 

I loved the fresh & colourful interior of this restaurant and the outside seating area is super cute too!



Im hoping to go back to NYC for New Years Eve and I will definitely try and re-vist one of the above places. Hope you liked this post my babes.



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MY SEPTEMBER ASOS WISHLIST


Im an ASOS addict. If you don't know now you knowwwwwww... (biggie reference here)

I browse ASOS everyday without fail, and I probably make an order on a weekly basis. It has everything from shoes to jackets, to jeans (that actually fit well) to makeup. I literally cannot get enough. I often do ASOS hauls on my Youtube so I thought I'd start sharing with you guys on here, the items I'd like before I actually buy them.



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7 THINGS IVE LEARNED SINCE BECOMING A FULLTIME BLOGGER





ASOS Taco Heels (sold out in black)



I've been over sharing my life on the Internet for almost 5 years, fulltime for 18 months (seems way longer) so I feel like it's about time I share some of my thoughts on blogging. Whether that's the industry, my tips and tricks or just a general think piece about my job. 

If you're just a reader or a blogger yourself, I hope this post gives you a little insight into what I've learnt since making this little space my moooooneyyyyyy maaakkkkkeeerrrr. 

Staying motivated is surprisingly easy. I may be the only blogger to say this but I generally stay pretty motivated with getting up early, getting tasks done & taking on the roll of being a bad ass bitch. I obviously have days like everyone else where I lack the whole "get up and go" but for the most part I'm a self motivating girl boss.

Always have a cash float. I've totally been that girl who's been paid loads in one go, splurged on new makeup, new clothes, a holiday and whatever else, and then panicked because 'my rent is due in 1 week and the money I expected to have come in by now fucking hasn't'. (I learnt my lesson for sure). Now I always have a minimum amount of £1500 in my account AT ALL TIMES. This covers my rent, my bills & food etc. It decreases anxiety, makes me feel like a total grown up ANDDDDD, like I have some sort of self control (which I actually don't - I'm working on it). Money in blogging can be pretty inconsistent and it's annoying AF!

Having a routine is so important. Everyday (except sick days obvs) I get up, get showered, have breakfast and go into my office, as if I'm going to work in a 'normal' job (hate that saying but you know what I mean). Structure and organisation keeps me on track and enables me to work in a relaxed environment. There's no chaos around ere babes! I imagine waking up late and going to bed late takes its toll eventually & for the sake of my mental health, I can't afford to do that. Although I'm productive in the evenings, I try and switch off by 8pm and be relaxed enough to sleep by 10! 

You rarely have a real day off. Now, I don't mean this in a wanky 'omg bloggers work so fucking hard, we never switch off and have time to ourselves' type of way, because a lot of bloggers appear to be in The Maldives every month or on a boat in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. However, I do mean it in the sense that on "days off" you will probably find me doing emails, scheduling tweets, replying to comments or editing photos. I just like to be productive all the time, ticking off my to do list, and generally just getting things done. Self care is important, and I do have evenings to myself and Sunday's to lounge around watching Netflix (whilst having some laptop time) but for the most part, I'm constantly working. But that's exactly how I like it. 

Flexibility is a blessing. I remember having to call in sick at my traditional job and losing out on wages and letting people down. I remember getting no sleep for whatever reason and having to work with a bunch of teenagers when I was so tired I wanted to die. And now??? I'm lucky enough to rarely ever feel that way. Being your own boss (I do have management who nag me at times though) and not having to answer to anyone means if I want an extra hour in bed I can. It means if I want a day in my pjs I can. It means (within reason), I can pick and choose when I want to work and what I want to do that day. The freedom of flexibility is something that many people don't have and I never take it for granted.

You don't need that many products. I have about 12 unopened cleansers, 30 items of makeup that I'm yet to use, 4 pairs of straighteners (my hair is curly FFS) and two entire drawers full of hair care products. I understand bloggers need access to products freely to write posts and to find inspiration for content BUT, we really don't need that much. It's super wasteful and frivolous and I don't think there's any need. Of course, I'm grateful, but receiving an entire skincare line aimed at ageing skin when I'm a bundle of youth (lol), kinda leaves me thinking W T ACTUAL F. 

It can be lonely. Although I like working alone and I don't mind being by myself, I do sometimes feel isolated, as if I'm in my own little bubble. Its so annoying when you want a little pub lunch but all your friends are at work and your blogger mates live too far away. I don't really go to events either because I don't enjoy them and it's a bit too much effort, especially in the evenings. SO.... sometimes I do miss having work colleagues to natter, gossip and moan to. 



Are you a full time blogger? If so, what have you learned since taking on that role?




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CLINGING ON TO SUMMER







Photography by JKG


QUAY Sunglasses (alternatives) 

Never usually a fan of florals. Never usually a fan of pink. But here I am wearing pink florals and hideously pink shoes and y'know what? Im cool with it.



I explained in this post that I wanted to start playing with fashion again. I missed being fun and flirty and genuinely taking joy in putting together outfits. Whilst browsing F21, I fell completely in love with this top and after trying it on, I was SO pleased. I love the print and I especially love the fit. I paired it with some DIY Boohoo+ jeans, which don't really fit the best if I'm honest, but I rocked them anyway. I really believe in paying a bit more for denim and investing in jeans that fit great. However, I purposely purchased these to hack them so I wanted cheap ones just incase it went wrong (it didn't, I'm in love, I now want to raw hem all the jeans I own lol). For details, of course I rocked a choker because I'm slightly obsessed with them and they take any basic bitch outfit into hello I'm a style goddess. As well as that, I threw on my new pink mules which are so ugly they're beautiful lol. 



So with the addition of some statement glasses and a classic bag I invested in.. outfit complete!




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26 THINGS IVE LEARNED THIS YEAR


(I was cute.. Still am haha)

So last week I turned 26 and I celebrated for pretty much 7 days straight in my fave place ever - NYC. All the videos and posts coming soon, brace yourselves!



Anyway.. I'm always up for a reflective post so I thought it was the perfect time to round up a few (a few meaning 26 lol) things I've learned this year. 

I'm basically nearly 30 and that's fucking weird isn't it? 



1. Dairy Milk chocolate is the best chocolate in the world - don't even tell me any different lol. 

2. The dentist is still scary even when you're a fully fledged adult. 

3. Self belief gets your places nothing else can. 

4. If you find a pair of jeans that fit, buy them 3x in every shade of denim because that is fucking rare.

5. Orgasms are great!!!!!!! They definitely get better with age (and because you know what the hell you want and trust me, sex at 18 is different to sex at 25)

6. We need to talk about sex more. It shouldn't be shameful or embarrassing. It should be fun and exhilarating.

7. Getting your fanny waxed is so painful it should be illegal.

8. Pretty Woman will remain in the Top 5 Best Films Ever To Be Made, until the end of time. 

9. Your demons don't define you. 

10. Frozen strawberry daqs is the tastiest alcoholic drink.

11. It's ok to take mental health sick days.

12. In fact - we should probably take even more of them. #justsaying

13. Beyonce isn't human.
14. Being fat is okay. 

15. Being fat doesn't make you less beautiful.

16. ASOS will in fact make you extremely broke but also extremely stylish LOL!

17. Having a Nandos doesn't make you cheeky. 

18. Boob sweat is an actual thing. 

19. Racism is alive more than ever before and we need to stop pretending it doesn't exist.

20. You can never have too many pairs of jogging bottoms. 

21. It's okay to mess up sometimes. 

22. You don't need to like someone to respect them - grown ass women shit right thurrr! 

23. The BREXIT was a fucking joke (soz if you voted out but I voted in and I'm still pissed) 

24. Coconut oil is life changing. If you know you know.

25. No matter how shit things may seem, nothing lasts forever. 

26. If you want something, go and get it. It's that simple! 



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OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE








Photography by JKG


Fringed Vans (sold out, similar) 


So I've been meaning to get back into outfit posts for a whiiiiillllleeeeee. I shot 6 different looks a few weeks back with Jade, but at the time my body image was pretty shit so I was hesitant to post any photos from the eyebrows down lol (not even joking, eek)

But today I revisited my 'need to edit and post folder' and here we are.



Although I like playing around with fashion, I tend to stick to what I know and what I feel comfortable in. I usually opt for high waisted jeans/trousers, crop tops and statement shoes, however when I opened this bomb ass jacket from Plus Equals, I knew it was time to step out of my comfort zone - even for just a little while.

I love love LOVE stripes and denim together. Its classic, timeless & super 90s chic. I never really wear shorts but hey ho, look at those delicious thighs lol. The frills on this ASOS co-ord adds extra sass too and makes this a number that can be dressed up. Id wear this with a long line blazer thrown over the shoulders and some red heels for a pop of colour. 




This look is super comfortable with a hint of *watch me slay* and I am LIVING for it. Everyone needs an oversized denim jacket in their wardrobes!





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