5 Practical Winter Jackets for Women

Following on from my recent post titled “5 Practical Winter Jackets for Men”, here’s a list of 5 practical winter jackets for women that will definitely keep you warm and dry this winter:

Active 3 Layer Extreme Women’s Waterproof Jacket from Mountain Warehouse (£79.99)

Active 3 Layer Extreme Women's Waterproof Jacket from Mountain Warehouse

Fully waterproof and breathable, letting moisture out to keep you dry on the inside, this is a brilliant women’s waterproof jacket and it comes from Mountain Warehouse, a UK outdoor retailer that’s perhaps not as respected as other retailers for its slightly older demographic. However, it has to be noted that Mountain Warehouse is slowly catching up and is making high-quality outdoor gear that’s on the same level as some of the more expensive brands, such as The North Face. This particular jacket features elasticated draw cords on the hem and hood, giving it an adjustable and, consequently, more flattering fit than other styles.

Reaction Thermic Jacket from Craghoppers (£80.00)

Women's Black Reaction Thermic Waterproof Jacket from Craghoppers

I think this women’s black waterproof jacket (also available in blue) from Craghoppers makes a nice, lightweight and breathable commuter jacket – especially if you have a bit of a walk to the station in the morning and don’t want to get soaked before you get to work. This jacket also features a fleece lining, which is sure to keep you nice and snug on cold winter mornings.

Women’s Skiddaw Waterproof Jacket from Berghaus (£150.00)

Women's Skiddaw Waterproof Jacket from Berghaus

Perhaps because of its slightly higher price tag, Berghaus seems to be the brand of choice for female commuters in a lot of cases. I’m not sure whether they offer the best jackets if you compare all outdoor retailers, however the majority of their styles are quite smart, which gives them a bit of an edge for those earning slightly more than your average Joe. This waterproof jacket has a flattering cut and is fully waterproof. It’s also very practical in that it features a roll away hood, five pockets (plenty of room for all your bits and bobs) and adjustable cuffs and hems, allowing for an attractive fit.

W Welsey Trench from Helly Hansen (£150.00)

Women's Khaki W Welsey Trench from Helly Hansen

Because of its slightly younger appeal in comparison to most outdoor brands (excluding The North Face, which I personally find quite overpriced), Helly Hansen is a favourite of mine when it comes to outdoor gear, and jackets in particular. This women’s waterproof trench coat (available in khaki, black and navy) is probably the trendiest jacket on my list, but the most fitting in that this is a brand creating attractive outdoor gear for women that flatters the silhouette and has the practical features a lot of luxury brands we consumers favour are missing, such as being waterproof and breathable. Comfortable and versatile, this is a great everyday piece for when the colder weather hits.

Jilly Women’s Stylish Black Waterproof Coat from Trespass (£25.99)

Jilly Women's Stylish Black Waterproof Coat from Trespass

It’s not quite Helly Hansen, but this similar trench style from Trespass is a nice option if you’re looking for a somewhat stylish waterproof coat at a very affordable price. This jacket is fully waterproof, has 2 zip pockets, and the waist belt helps to flatter the silhouette. It’s a great lightweight option for that commute or a dash to the shops.

If you have any waterproof jacket suggestions, including styles or brands I’ve not included in this list, be sure to leave a comment with your recommendations.

Images courtesy of Mountain Warehouse, Craghoppers, Berghaus, Helly Hansen & Trespass

5 Must-have Tartan Skirts

Walking through London yesterday, I couldn’t help but notice that tartan skirts seem to have made a bit of a comeback for Autumn/Winter 2014. I must have seen about five girls wearing tartan skirts in the space of 30 seconds!

I’m a big fan of tartan skirts – I think they’re a classic – so I was really happy to see them about again. On that note, I’ve put together a list of five must-have tartan skirts you’ll love. Here they are:

Circle Skirt In Red Tartan Print from ASOS (£28.00)

ASOS Circle Skirt In Red Tartan Print

The length of this tartan print circle skirt from ASOS is what attracted me to it. This particular skirt is a great option for both work and play. Tuck in a white shirt for work or tuck in a graphic t-shirt for coffee with the girls. Either way, you’ll look fantastic in this vibrant piece.

Rocket Tartan Mini Skirt from Vivienne Westwood (£126.00)

Rocket Tartan Mini Skirt from Vivienne Westwood

I have to admit, I’m not as crazy as most about the work of Vivienne Westwood, however this tartan mini skirt is a beautiful piece. The colours are rich but not too bold and the cut is edgy. I’m 99% sure this will look fantastic with whatever you pair it with. That being said, it is a pricier option when there are so many much cheaper styles on the market.

Tartan Check Mini Skirt with Wool from M&S (£35.00)

Blue Tartan Check Mini Skirt with Wool from M&S

I’ve never paid much attention to M&S, partly because both my Nan and Mum buy their clothes there, however this blue wool tartan skirt is one of my favourites. Pair this with a blouse and blazer, throw on some black heels, and you’ve got yourself the perfect trendy office look.

Tartan Tube Skirt from Oasis (£25.00)

Black and White Tartan Tube Skirt from Oasis

This is probably my least favourite on the list, however I still like it because I think Oasis has a nice selection of clothing and is a little underrated. The main aspect of this skirt I like is the versatility of it and how it’s suitable for both casual and smart. Tuck in a t-shirt or scoop neck top for a little casual edge, or throw on a blazer and blouse for a job interview or meeting.

Plaid Circle Skirt from American Apparel (£48.00)

Black and Yellow Tartan A-line Circle Skirt from American Apparel

Skater skirts are brilliant for nights out. Throw this American Apparel skirt on with a cropped top or sweatshirt (as photographed) and you’ve got yourself a relatively effortless and affordable look that’s cute and even a little sexy. Perfect!

Opt for tartan this season and just have fun with it!

5 Practical Winter Jackets for Men

When it comes to purchasing your winter jacket or coat, it’s not just style you have to think about. Practicalities such as how waterproof (to keep you dry) and how breathable (to help the release of moisture) the jacket is are also important factors.

Believe it or not, there are countless brands who sell “winter” coats that are not even waterproof for well over £100 and we (the consumers) purchase them just because they look great on. On that note, it’s helpful to point out that no matter how good that winter coat looks, you’re still going to be soaked, sweaty and ill if it doesn’t have practical features, which is why I’ve put together a list of 5 practical winter coats for men from brands you can rely on to help you choose your winter coat this year. Here they are:

Canyon Men’s Long Waterproof Jacket from Mountain Warehouse (£59.99)

Canyon Men's Khaki Long Waterproof Jacket from Mountain Warehouse

Completely watertight and available in both black and khaki, this waterproof jacket is sure to keep you dry and warm throughout the winter months, this year and next. This jacket is insulated for extra warmth and has two large pockets to keep your bits and pieces in. Better yet, it has a detachable hood for when it’s not raining but chilly, and the cut is very flattering for a trendy appeal.

Dubliner Jacket from Helly Hansen (£100.00)

Men's Black Waterproof Dubliner Jacket from Helly Hansen

Waterproof, windproof (adjustable cuffs to stop wind going up your sleeves) and breathable with a quick dry lining (just in case you sweat) and a packable hood, this men’s black waterproof Helly Hansen jacket (also available in red, grey and olive green) is ideal for wet weather. It’s a little more lightweight than the Mountain Warehouse jacket (above) but probably not as warm. Helly Hansen is known for its great quality outdoor gear, so this could be a great, reasonably priced option to tide you over this winter.

Kiwi Jacket from Craghoppers (£90.00)

Men's Kiwi Jacket from Craghoppers

I may be a little biased on this one as it’s actually my choice of winter coat this year (I purchased it at the beginning of this month). 100% waterproof and with a brushed inner collar to keep you comfortable, this waterproof jacket from Craghoppers is a great commuter jacket. It’s warm but not too padded (so you don’t overheat on the train) and keeps you totally dry when it rains, in both heavy rain and light showers. It also has AquaDry technology, which means it stays drier for longer.

Men’s Stormcloud Waterproof Jacket from Berghaus (£75.00)

Men's Stormcloud Waterproof Jacket from Berghaus

Berghaus can be quite expensive, however the Stormcloud Waterproof Jacket is a slightly more affordable option in comparison to their usual styles, which is part of the reason as to why it made the list. This jacket is completely waterproof and features an adjustable hood for practicality. It comes in black, indigo, carbon and green colour options and is fairly lightweight, making it another great option for commuters.

Arboles Men’s Faux Fur & Waterproof Parka Jacket from Trespass (£34.99)

Arboles Men's Faux Fur & Waterproof Parka Jacket from Trespass

If you don’t want to spend much on your winter jacket but want something practical that will keep you warm and dry, this waterproof parka jacket from Trespass is a great option. Padded with an adjustable zip and a removable faux fur hood, this is a great casual jacket for those weekends spent outdoors with friends. Better yet, it has 7 pockets and elasticated cuffs for ultimate practicality and versatility.

Be sure to stop getting ripped off by brands offering “winter” jackets that will leave you soaked in heavy downpours this season and opt for a jacket with waterproof and breathable technologies from an outdoor clothing specialist. You’ll thank me for it!

Images courtesy of Mountain Warehouse, Helly Hansen, Craghoppers, Berghaus & Trespass

For Women: Jil Sander Simple Sandals

Just as I mentioned that simple sandals for summer are key for guys, they are just as important for you girls, too. Easy to wear on the beach, to work or just out with friends, these Jil Sander sandals are just about as simple as they get, but they’re perfect.

Simple sandals like these are easy to pair with anything, so make sure you grab yourself a pair this summer.

jil sander simple sandals

Simple Sandals by Jil Sander, £464.69. farfetch.com

Images courtesy of Farfetch

Love This: Warehouse ’80s Floral Midi Dress

I’m a huge advocate of midi dresses – perhaps because of their elegance in comparison to shorter dresses. A printed midi dress is a wardrobe staple for summer, and this one from Warehouse is a particular favourite of mine. Styled on its own with some black heels, or even some matching statement heels if you’re feeling daring, provides an effortless look for both day and night.

Give it a go!

Warehouse '80s Floral Midi Dress

’80s Floral Midi Dress by Warehouse, £42.00. asos.com

Images courtesy of ASOS

Review: Holster Sandals

I had a close look at a pair of Holster sandals recently and I love them. Plus, Fearne Cotton wears them and I really admire Fearne, so that could be part of it. Regardless, these sandals are vegan friendly and recyclable, getting the green thumbs up. At just £44, they’re affordable and, from what I can see, well worth the money. Plus, I love the stud detailing on the strap and the range of colours. That being said, I do have to be a bit dull and say that the black sandals are definitely my favourite!

Which pair would you buy?

Black Holster Sandals

You can purchase these sandals through the Holster e-shop.

Images courtesy of Holster

For Women: 3.1 Phillip Lim Jacquard Mini Skirt

What can I say? I’d be crazy not to adore this Phillip Lim skirt – it’s floral AND metallic! Two things I can’t get enough off this summer. Pair this with a white blouse (tucked in, of course) and some sandals, and you have yourself a beautiful, slightly edgy summer ensemble. Perfect if you demand effortless style when popping out for a spot of lunch with the girls!

3.1 Phillip Lim Jacquard Mini Skirt

Jacquard Mini Skirt by 3.1 Phillip Lim, £310.00. farfetch.com

Images courtesy of Farfetch

Love This: STORM “Zentrek” Watch

I was a little bit delighted when I received the press release for STORM’s new Zentrek watch. It’s a little more bulky and casual than watches I usually like, but it has a nice summer feel, so there’s no doubt it’s current.

Available in both a matte and polished finish, STORM have given you choice with this style, which I really appreciate – and I’m sure you do, too. Plus, it’s available in both blue and black.

Practical with its 24 hour features and STORM’s signature lazer glass, ensuring longevity, the Zentrek is definitely a style to consider buying this summer.

STORM Zentrek watch

“Zentrek” Watch by STORM, £139.99. stormwatches.com

Images courtesy of STORM