2015- time to reflect!

2014 was the best year of my life to date. I began pursuing my media career, started blogging, got my own radio show, trained to be a TV presenter, interned at Closer magazine, joined college to study Creative Business and finished the year by becoming a columnist for my county's local magazine. I really doubted that 2015 would be any better than that...but it was ten times better! I made some career changes, developed my writing skills and had even more amazing opportunities! Here's a little reflection of the year I've had...


I started the year off with my first ever solo radio show, 'Friday's with Florence Grace' on January 2nd. I was so scared but totally in my element, it flowed so well and I was on a total high- presenting on air is what I'm born to do, I'm sure! Luckily, my listeners totally loved my first solo show too. I had never felt happier!

I was accepted to write for an online magazine, Eevee Life magazine! 

I also helped my boyfriend to set up his business, Stoke Skate Co., assisting with fashion design for his clothing range, product photography and setting up/managing his social media. I loved the opportunity to venture into fashion design, because I have a passion for fashion (ha!) and love to get creative. I also got to combine two of my other main passions- social media and photography! A win win situation really!

4Music got back in touch with me in regards to creating more content for some more TV shows (which feels absolutely unreal to type out!)- so of course I said yes to that!

I finished the month off doing something completely spontaneous: starting a stationery line! I love stationery and had been inspired by my boyfriend setting up his business- I wanted to do something creative too! And so I designed some stationery that matched my blog and the brand that I was starting to develop for myself.


February was a very special month for me- my first column for Vale Life was published! I was now a published writer, in a glossy magazine, distributed all over the county and I actually cried when I saw the first copy of my work! Proud didn't even cover how I felt, and I still get the same feeling whenever I see my work printed even now!

I did some more work with 4Music involving one of my favourite artists, Charli XCX! 

I attended my first ever blogger's event, a Gossip Girl themed London Fashion Week event! Whilst the event itself was a bit of a let down, there were some great networking opportunities there and I was drawn by an incredible artist!

I was then offered my first opportunity of 2015...to blog as a V.I.P press member at a fashion show!!!!! Of course I said yes and loved every minute of it! I had never been to a fashion show before, nor had I been treated as a V.I.P member of the press, but it was absolutely incredible!


March started well, with me presenting a concert with my radio station, Blink FM! I normally hate standing up and talking in front of people, and yet somehow it came so naturally to me, with me actually being able to banter with the other presenters and get some audience involvement going on! It was a brilliant night and so much fun!! I also got to do some stage door interviews with the various musicians and bands which kept me buzzing all throughout the night and constantly pinching myself that this was my life!

Many of you will know that I am a feminist. In March, I was invited to get involved with women in politics, and was invited to blog at an exclusive event which would encourage more young women to vote, as well as take an interest in politics generally. Whilst I was unable to attend the actual event, I did speak about it on my radio show, blog and social media sites to discuss issues with people that way. It was an honour to be selected to help with such an important campaign.

March ended with one of my most treasured experiences yet- a Q and A with Katie Hopkins, one of my inspirations, and the opportunity to meet her one on one at the end of it. People will not understand Katie's views in the 140 characters she has to use on Twitter. Getting to hear her explain in more depth her 'controversial' views was so insightful. When I met her at the end, she encouraged me to never give up on my work, no matter who was giving me grief for what I was doing, and then she gave me a cuddle. I got a little bit emotional...


On the 1st of April I was talent spotted by a radio station in London who had stumbled across my show by accident via my twitter account and use of hashtags (so they do work!). They invited me to have my own show with them and I was flattered, but unfortunately nothing came of it. However, it still felt great to be scouted and know that I was good enough to be part of a bigger station in London!

Later on in the month, it was announced that I would be the Vice Station Controller and Social Media Manger for Blink FM, the radio station I worked at! I was so thrilled to be trusted with such huge roles and felt so proud that my hard work at the station was paying off!

I also made my decision regarding university in April! I decided to turn down my position at London Southbank to study Multimedia Journalism and instead study an online course in Magazine Journalism- an NCTJ diploma with a 100% employability rate at the end of it! 

I finished April with more TV work for 4Music!


I did my first "grown up" thing in May and got to vote in the general elections! I had no idea who anyone was or what I was doing, so have made it my goal to be more informed next time around...

I received some more support from my beloved Katie...

I was presented with the opportunity to broadcast my radio show, 'Friday's with Florence Grace' across Marlow FM as well as Blink FM and was so happy about this! Unfortunately, Blink FM had some issues and has since shut down, so there was no time for this to happen, but it was another opportunity that gave me faith in my own skills and abilities!

Perhaps the highlight of May, and of the year so far was the fact that I started my own magazine! Yes, I designed, wrote, took on other writers and published my own magazine, 'Love from...' magazine! It was as part of my college course, but has since turned in to so much more! I'm so proud of my little publication! 


Whilst June was a little quiet for me, it did see me releasing and selling my first ever issues of my magazine, which was an incredible feeling! Whilst my first sale was to my mum, I also sold to numerous bloggers and visitors to my local trade show, put on by my college! I even got told my magazine looked like Vale Life magazine, the publication that I am a columnist for! This was very flattering.

I also completed my college course- and my full time education- with a Merit! Now it was time to go and be an adult in the big, bad world!


July was a mostly quiet month for me as I went on holiday...but when I came back from my holiday, I went to a job interview in London without telling anybody because I didn't want to jinx anything. I heard back the next day and I had got the job! What for? A Social Media Manager for London based clothing company Young Britannia! I could work from home but would have the opportunity to attend fashion events and music festivals to blog about them/promote them on social media! It was an amazing opportunity, I said yes and could not believe that less than a year since starting out in my media career pursuit, I had a job! 

Florence Grace

I also became a Sex and Relationships writer for Amor magazine. This is a topic I don't tend to cover much so I was a little nervous about approaching it but I have done several pieces and all of them so far have been praised and successful! I'd never show them to my mum though haha...!


August was a month of work more than experiences or opportunities! I began working with Young Britannia, putting together promo videos, building an online presence for the company and writing blog posts. I also wrote several pieces for Amor magazine, as well as working on my own blog, my magazine column for Vale Life and my own magazine!!!


At the start of September, I handed in my notice, quitting the job that I had had for nearly two and a half years so that I could focus on my media career. If I wanted to earn extra income on top of my numerous media positions, I needed a flexible job that didn't require me to work weekends...as luck would have it, one came along...and on the 18th of September I became a Topshop employee! Working just 8 hours a week flexibly, covering someone's maternity leave was really useful and allowed me to do all my other bits and pieces. In the month that followed I quickly gained recognition for my good work almost every week, which felt great, and after two months was offered a permanent contract, which made me incredibly happy!

Florence Grace

I also attended London Fashion Week Beauty Bar which was an amazing experience, with so many brands being incredibly generous and donating lots of gifts to myself and the other bloggers! 

I finished September with an INCREDIBLE moment- landing my first job as a freelance writer. For someone as busy as myself, what job could be more perfect than freelancing? Earning my own money, working on my own terms, doing something that I love! I was over the moon, having been writing "properly" for just over a year...and now I was being paid to do it!


I met 1/4 of my childhood loves, JLS...and yes, I did cry over him! 

I also got to do the most amazing, incredible, exciting and pinch-myself-I-must-be-dreaming thing yet. As mentioned already, throughout the year I had been making videos for 4Music to use in various TV shows. However, I received a phone call asking me to come and be part of the first ever live audience TV show on 4Music. I was on two out of three of the episodes from the pilot series, got a lot of air time on little old me and got to meet some of the MIC cast! 

I handed in my first assignment for my NCTJ Diploma course and got an A!

I also helped to throw the fashion showcase for Young Britannia at the Wyld Bar in the W Hotel, London. This was an incredibly hectic, glamorous and all around amazing experience for me. 


I turned 20! No longer a teenager, which was a slightly scary thought but I could only view this as a new chapter of my life which made it seem a little bit more exciting...I started the new chapter off buying a Michael Kors handbag. Oops.

I love Boohoo. It's my favourite shop and I want everything from it...so I was thrilled when my long time friend, Kate, took me as a blogger to the Boohoo Christmas party in London! It was held at the Sky Bar and we were put into a Hilton Hotel Honor Suite for the night, all totally free of charge! We also got goodie bags, nails done, free drinks, the absolute works. I actually felt like a real celebrity!

I was on 4Music again, doing home videos this time and had so many people message me about seeing me on screen which was pretty surreal!

I made some developments to my magazine, making it available in digital format!

Finally, I ended the month helping to host the first ever Young Britannia fashion show which was so much hard work but so worthwhile- it was a great event and I even got to rub elbows with a few celebs!

Fashion Show


December was another month of mostly, just work! I released my third issue of Love from... magazine and it was my most successful issue yet, selling in both printed and digital copies with more writers and readers than ever before!

I did so much freelance writing and earned myself two bonuses in the space of a month!

However, with all of this work going on my blog was let slide, so I am hoping to turn this around in 2016!

I also made the decision to leave my job at Young Britannia, due to personal reasons that I am not willing to disclose. It was a great experience and lead to a lot of amazing opportunities and I will forever be grateful to them for giving me my first paid job in Social Media! Now it's onwards and upwards to the future...a.k.a, 2016!

Resolutions and goals

At the end of 2014, I set myself the following goals for 2015:
  1. Reach 100,000 views on my blog by January 31st 2015.
  2. Reach 1000 followers on my blog by January 31st 2015 (This is my biggest battle- I have a lot of regular readers but they don't follow me! *hint hint*)
  3. Meet some of the lovely bloggers that I have met online in person. The blogging community is so wonderful and so friendly, I would love to get to know more! 
  4. Use my eczema cream as regularly as I am supposed to so that it disappears for as long as possible! 
  5. Lose 1 stone and hopefully this shall lead to me dropping a dress size.
  6. Don't trust everyone 100%. Not everyone is as genuine or as lovely as I would like them to be, and this often results in me getting hurt a lot. I need to stop being so naive and recognize the fake people more quickly. 
  7. Leave college with a "merit". 
  8. Start saving to move out...
  9. Get more work experience, or even a job, within the media industry.
  10. Say "yes" to as much as I can!

I don't normally stick to resolutions but can happily say that this year I actually did stick to/achieve some! Numbers 3, 4, 6, 7, 9 and 10 were all achieved by me! I did meet lovely bloggers in reallife, I did clear up my eczema a lot (although it keeps creeping back!), I did learn to trust fewer people who were actually worthy of trusting, I did leave college with a 'merit', I did get my first job within the media industry (several!) and I did say "yes" to almost every single thing offered to me, hence my busy, busy year! 

So...what are my goals for 2016?

  1. Get fit! I always say lose weight and it never happens...or if it does, it comes back on! So rather than focusing on my weight, I am going to focus on my general health and fitness! Me and my sister have plans to start running in the New Year, at least three times a week, so hopefully with her encouragement this is something I will be able to achieve...which will lead to weight loss as a bonus!
  2. Reach 100,000 views on my blog! I am over half way there at this point so I think this is totally doable!
  3. Get a new media based career, now that I have left Young Britannia.
  4. Continue to develop my writing to the best it can be!
  5. Finish (and pass!) my Journalism diploma!
  6. Start writing my first ever book! That's right, I'm going to be writing a book. The general idea is writing about building your empire as a woman, being motivated and successful and so on...so we will see how that goes!
  7. Save to move out- now that I'm properly earning, hopefully this will happen!
  8. Develop and grow my magazine further.
  9. Reach 500 followers on my blog.
  10. Improve my Instagram feed to increase followers and interaction.
  11. Work my way up to "Experienced member of the team" at Topshop.
  12. Find a new station to get back into my radio presenting! 
  13. Keep saying "yes" to everything!

So here we are at the end of a very long blog post! Looking back on it, I have developed in many, many ways this year, both personally and career wise- and I have had a very busy year because of this! I hope 2016 will be just as busy and just as full of opportunity for me! I also hope that this time next year, I will have met all of my resolutions, not just some!

What are your resolutions for 2016? Let me know in the comments below!

Happy New Year! I hope 2016 is fab for you all.

Love from,
Florence Grace

Special thanks this year goes to Bobbie Gordon, Abi Street, Hollie, Hannah Delacour, Jamie Farr, Adela, Alex, Nathan, Jen, Matt, Ruby Mae Moore, Paige (Amor), Ben Wybrow, Carda Casey, Alec Coulter, Poppy Wootton, Abby Baker, Charlie Trott, Bex Walton, Danielle Porteous, Suzanne (YMA), Topshop Aylesbury girls Chloe H, Chloe S, Laura, Hannah, Lauren and Amie, my mum, my dad, Zoe, Kate, Justine, Fran, Katherine, Nicola, Danielle, my #LFMag girls and of course my better half, Alex. This year you've all helped me, supported me and/or provided me with amazing opportunities. Thank you so much. 

If you liked this post you might also like... 2014- time to reflect!

Working in retail!

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Most of us will work in retail for a short portion of our life- some for a lot longer! Whilst I love working in retail there are a few annoyances and lessons that I have learnt over time- and I'm sure my fellow retail employees will agree! Have a read of the list and see if any of your wind ups match mine!

The sale rail mess.
Just because things are reduced doesn't mean you can treat them like total rubbish, chucking them over the rail, dropping them on the floor, stealing hangers but not the clothes (????), and just generally making the rail a pig sty.

The general shop mess.
Is it really so hard to put items back in the same place that you found them, on the same hanger, in the same department? The sparkly dress quite clearly doesn't belong on a jacket hanger in the knitwear section. It's not difficult and doesn't require much effort. Pull something out to look at it, if you like it, great, take it. If you don't, JUST PUT IT BACK! And when you do put it back, do not do it inside out or back to front! JUST LEAVE THINGS AS YOU FIND THEM!

Know your size.
It is so uncomfortable when a woman asks you to pull her jeans away from her bum so you can look inside and see the size tag on the jeans because she somehow does not know what size she is wearing. How can you not know?!? If you're going shopping, make sure you know your size! It is not a sales assistant's job to strip you!

The customer is never right.
You're trained to accept that the customer is always right and to make sure they leave happy, ready to return to the store again in future. Yet somehow, the customer is never right! How can you seriously think we will refund jeans you bought four months ago because they've worn out at the crotch where clearly your thighs have rubbed together? A) It's general wear and tear. B) They're not new jeans. C) You don't have the receipt or the tags you just want free jeans. D) You're wrong.

Not everything online is in store.
"I saw it online so you must have it". Must we? Really? We must have every product made by the company listed on the website???? No. If you want that kind of service go to a flagship store. Or just, you know, ORDER IT ONLINE.

We aren't in control of the sizes we stock.
If we don't have a size in stock, it's because we haven't been sent it in a delivery. It is not our fault and it is not a reason to get lairy at a sales assistant. It is beyond our control and customers need to understand this.

If we say something is out of stock, we aren't lying. 
We know what we have and don't have in stock- we're usually updated on items at the start of each shift!! So don't try and fight us over this one.

We did not come up with the carrier bag charge.
Rants that last for five minutes, hold up a queue and are a waste of time are always about this new carrier bag charge. The government made it, it's a legal requirement, we must abide. I don't care what you've read on the internet about it, if you want a bag you have to buy it. End of.

Prices are set.
I don't care if this item is cheaper in another shop. Go and shop there then!

What have you learnt whilst working in retail? Do you love it or hate it?

Love from,
Florence Grace


Slashers- who are we?

I recently saw an article written by ELLE magazine about a new generation of women who are successfully holding down numerous careers. The phrase that's been coined for these women is "slashers".

I am a slasher. Having left education with some idea of what I wanted to do and a vague way of getting there, I now hold down eight jobs, some paid and some unpaid. Three provide me with my main source of income- the remaining five are more for the experience, contacts and getting my foot into the world of media based careers. It's hard work and often I'm working for 14 hours a day to get everything done and meet deadlines- all whilst maintaining a social life and studying a diploma too!

I also know many other 'slashers', women who are starting their own business whilst working full time and doing a multitude of other activities such as being a mum, studying, blogging and the likes. It's not uncommon for people to be holding down more than one job. But is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Me, I'm all for female empowerment and I think if a woman can and want's to hold down more than one career then why shouldn't she? Take a look at the vast majority of celebrities nowadays who we praise for doing their profession, e.g. singing, yet also bringing out a book, DVD, perfume and products. We always celebrate them and how talented they are, despite knowing that they probably didn't do much of these accomplishments single handedly...so why don't we do the same for normal women who do complete these same style accomplishments all on their own?

The article in ELLE magazine briefly mentioned how 'slashers' are often perceived as women who can't settle down, can't make ends meet and don't really have their lives together. To me, this is so wrong. On a personal level, I do make ends meet and I do have my life together, yet I still fit into this 'slasher' category, as do many other women I know. It's ridiculous that women are being criticised for having the talent, time and capabilities to hold down more than one career. It's definitely something to celebrate- these women are building empires for the women of the future so that they will have more exciting opportunities than are available now, and they're building an empire to support them for the rest of their lives. How is this possibly a bad thing?

It isn't.

The fact that there has been a rise of 'slashers' says one thing to me, and it's not the obvious "everyone's broke so they need more than one job to get by" excuse. Women want more. 50 years ago, women couldn't build empires, least of all build empires and get praised for it, very easily. Now, with more doors open to them than ever before, millennial women especially are taking opportunities with both hands and squeezing everything they can from them. And it's working. There are more women running their own mini (and massive!) empires than ever before, more female entrepreneurs trying to break into a multitude of industries, pushing aside the male oppression's telling them what they aren't able to do and ignoring the archaic views of older women saying that they need to pick one career, start a family and settle down.

Us 'slashers' are breaking the mould, creating a new norm and paving the way for generations upon generations of women to come. If we're slashing anything, it's societies expectations of women and what we can and can't do.

The phrase "jack of all trades, master of none" is dead. Millennial women- "slashers"- are capable of so much more now. So go out there and make something of yourself! Be bold, be brave and be creative- it's time to build your empire.

Love from,
Florence Grace

Anti Bullying Week- my story.

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When I woke up today, I noticed one of the trends on Twitter, "Anti Bullying Week".

Bullying is an issue that is very close to my heart. I think of myself as a pretty strong person, I have a sharp tongue when need's be, like to be in charge and am *maybe* a little bit bossy. I can hold my hands up and say that in any scenario, I would probably be a bully rather than someone who was bullied. It may not sound like a nice thing to admit, and it's not because I'm a horrible person, but rather because I feel like my characteristics do not emulate that of a "victim".

Yet three times in my life I have been the victim of bullying. One, tame incident when I was about nine years old, one more serious incident when I was twelve and one far more serious incident that started when I was fifteen and still has an impact on my life now. If anything, this told me that anyone can be a victim at any time in their life, regardless of what characteristics they have.

When I was nine, the incident was not so serious. It lasted for a few weeks, if that. I decided that I no longer wanted to be friends with my "best friend". She was spiteful, mean and called me a "cow" in the girls bathroom. I was having none of it and went straight to my teacher- who sent me to the headteacher. Now, I was not a teacher's pet at school, but I was popular with teachers, I got good grades and they all liked me. This probably helped my case but they managed to sort the problem quickly, nipping it in the bud and bar from a few evil looks, the girl never bothered me again.

When I was twelve, it was a bit more serious. I was in my first year of secondary school, and my primary school had a friendship scheme, putting at least three people from the same school into each secondary school class to make things easier. I was lucky, I was placed in the same class as my very best friend! Then there were two other girls who I didn't know so well, but could say hello to. Unfortunately, my best friend moved away and didn't make the transition to secondary school with me. Because we were from the same primary, me and the other two girls got lumped together and became "best friends". To cut a long story short, one was evidently a third wheel, and made my life very awkward because of it, even getting her older sister and her older friends to come and "have words" with me. Me and my mum went into the school and, again, the teachers liked me and asked what I wanted to happen. I said I wanted her moved from my class and never to speak to me again...and they did just that. They removed her from my class and she never spoke to me again. I was very, very lucky.

The third and final incident of bullying was the worst and has- in a way- ruined my life forever. It started when I was fifteen, lasting until I was nineteen and occasionally happens to me still now. It's knocked my confidence, if I see anybody from my old school I break out in a cold sweat and feel sick, and if I have to meet anyone on a social scenario (e.g. serving them at work, which happens more often than I would like) I wish nothing more than for the ground to swallow me up. This bullying was never physical- I somehow think it was worse. This bullying was by a huge number of people- my block list tells me 250- all from school, in my year, the year below and from other school, even including some people who didn't know me, who used social media to humiliate me, laugh at me and make jokes at my expense.

Yes, I can admit that at 15 and 16 I made some stupid tweets, I over shared personal details about arguments with my boyfriends and did many, silly "indirect" tweets. But the bullying started before that. People I believed were my friends were using twitter, before I had it, to bitch about me. When I joined twitter, people tweeted things such as "oh no, the downfall of twitter" and "where can we bitch now?". I couldn't believe it. But it only got worse. Everything I tweeted was screenshot, shared around and had hundreds- literally, hundreds- of people favouriting, retweeting and laughing at me. When I started blogging, they pulled apart my work. They made fun of my relationship, how I dressed, things I said, what I posted, how I captioned photos. They picked my life apart online for all the world to see and still to this day don't see how they did anything wrong. I see them face to face and they either blank me or smile and say hi like nothing happened. Some people message me, confused as to why I've blocked them on social media.

If you favourited, retweeted or replied to any of the comments on twitter or facebook, or worse still participated in writing something, you're not my friend and that is why you are blocked. Is it that hard to understand?

Now, at twenty, I'm living with the effects of this humiliation every single day. I don't have much confidence, I find it hard to make friends and I trust no one. If I didn't have the support of my mum and my boyfriend throughout the ordeal I hate to think what would have happened.

Bullying can happen to anyone, at any time. I used to be pretty popular at school, I was friends with most people, went to all the parties, to town every weekend and after school. I don't know what happened to change all of that, or who initiated the online bullying, but it's had a severe knock on my self esteem and the person that I am today.

What I want to say to victims of bullying is that it does get better. Whilst I still live with the after effects of it, I have still come out stronger. And whilst one of my bullies is working in Mcdonalds, another has no job at all and everyone else is just getting on in life, I am building an empire for myself, running my own magazine, working in the media industry and doing so many other incredible things. Bullies try to ruin your life but never let them. It's easier said than done, believe me, I know, but once you make it through, it's totally worth it. The online world has a block button for a reason, so don't be afraid to use it. At school, if you're that scared, find safety in the library or a classroom with a teacher so you don't have to face seeing the bullies at break or lunch. Tell teachers and parents, or your friends what's going on too, never keep it to yourself. Bullies are sad, hurting and angry. They take their insecurities out on other people, and it's wrong. Don't let it overcome you though. Don't let it end your life, destroy your relationships or cause harm to yourself. It's so tough to get through but you can do it. You can, you can, you can.

Bullies never win. It's important to remember that.

Love from,
Florence Grace

My emails are always open if anyone needs to talk- florencegrace13@gmail.com or find me on Twitter and have a chat. Never keep things like this to yourself. 

My favourite TV shows*

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Everyone loves watching TV, right? I used to watch it literally 24/7 and would freak if I missed out on any of my favourite shows and had to watch them on catch up. However, as I got older and grew interested in other things- such as blogging- my TV addiction faded away and now, I rarely watch at all.

However, one thing that has been bad all the way through is my TV. It's pretty small and is on the other side of the bedroom, so the struggle with eye straining is real. This Christmas I've asked for a new telly, to improve the TV watching experience- and I've found that Panasonic have a great range to choose from! The hardest part is...well, choosing one! Have a look, which one do you think looks best?  http://viera.panasonic.co.uk/4ktv/

Once I've got a new TV, I'll definitely be able to enjoy programs properly and will actually be able to see what's going on! Me and my boyfriend have started to watch a lot of programs again, but we rarely watch one off programs; we like to start whole series together! We've watched some good series and some not so good series, which look a bit like this:

Good series:

Bad Series:

That's right, I hate two of the most popular sitcoms there are. I'm sorry, but Big Bang Theory isn't funny- and neither is How I Met Your Mother! However, I feel I do love some amazing shows, such as Empire! That's definitely an amazing addition to Tuesday night TV as well as being a show I would recommend to literally everyone! And whilst Gotham is a little on the violent side, which isn't my usual choice of show at all, it's got a great story throughout which makes it so addictive! I'm sat here waiting on the next series rather impatiently...

I'm definitely going to be ordering the boxsets of some of my favourite shows to watch all the time...at least I will for Empire and Gotham!

What TV shows do you love and hate? Let me know in the comments below!

Love from,
Florence Grace

This post was kindly sponsored by Panasonic. 

Sex on Trial

*Trigger Warning: This post contains sensitive content discussing rape and sexual assault*.

Last night (02.11.15) BBC Three showed a documentary titled "Is this rape? Sex on Trial". Being the opinionated woman I am, and with my strong views on rape, sexual assault and consent, I knew that this was something I would have to watch- and share my opinion on.

Which I did via Twitter of course, with the hashtag #sexontrial. Many of the people I follow joined in and the whole evening, from when the program started to long after it had ended, was filled with accusations, outrage, swearing, shock, denial and everything in between.

The show was hosted by 4Music presenter, Will Best, and focused on 24 teenagers/young adults, of both sexes, and a variety of ages who were taken to a house and shown a staged drama made for the purpose of the documentary of a sexual encounter at a party between a boy and a girl. The group of young adults then had to discuss and decide whether or not the encounter was rape. With Will Best playing devil's advocate, and some real life victims thrown into the mix, the whole program was tense, frustrating and eye opening.

I genuinely had no idea that so many people did not have a clear understanding of what rape and consent is.

*SPOILER ALERT* In the drama, it was so clear to me immediately that the sexual encounter shown was rape. I didn't need to hear the different individual's stories, I didn't need a discussion. The young man started to kiss the young woman whilst she was asleep, before sticking his penis into her mouth. She quite clearly did not consent, he did not look for consent and therefore it was rape.

The fact that this had to be discussed and caused conflicting opinions and arguments showed me that a better education on rape is needed desperately.

I'm not going to shove Google definitions at you and tell you what I believe you should already know. What I will tell you is the things that you can't find on Google about consent and that is this:

If a girl/boy (because yes, both sexes can and are raped) remains silent that is not consent. Saying nothing is not saying yes.

If someone is dressed in what you believe is a sexually provocative way, that is not consent. They are not asking for it, in the same way that somebody not wearing a suit of armour is asking to be stabbed! Don't be so ridiculous- it makes me retch that some people still even believe this to be true.

"Come hither" eyes at a party, along with flirty "banter" and being cheeky in a cute way, especially whilst under the influence of alcohol but also without, is not consenting.

Sending a certain amount of kisses in a text is not consenting.

Not pushing you away is not consenting.

The only form of consent is somebody giving you verbal permission to have a sexual encounter with them. Regardless of whether it's kissing, oral sex or penetrative sex, if you don't have permission, don't do it.

How can so many people be so clueless? Why are we not having these sorts of things taught in school? Why are we still stuck firmly in the belief that men are rapists and women are victims and that it's never the other way around? Why do we still say people are asking for it, because of how they look or behave?

No one- I repeat, no one- asks to be raped.

Similarly, why are we always ready to shame a victim of rape? Why do we sit and accuse them, tell them what we feel they should have done, ask them whether they care that they are ruining their attackers life? As a victim, it is not your fault. We're so quick to defend a rapist over a victim, always assuming that they're crying wolf. Why is that? It's no one's fault. No one chooses to be attacked. No one asks for it.

No one asks to be raped. 

If you're raped, or sexually assaulted in any way, it is not your fault. 

Whilst you may disagree with the program, the outcome of the documentary's drama or my own opinions, one thing has been made abundantly clear; we need a better education on what rape and consent are. Maybe then, with a better education under our belts, issues like these may begin to decrease.

Understand what rape is. When having sex, keep on checking that this is okay, that you both want this and are comfortable. It's not embarrassing, prude or awkward. It's polite, it's safe and it's needed.

Love from,
Florence Grace

Did you watch the documentary? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below!

Turning 20!

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On November 1st, at 3:29pm to be exact, I will be twenty years old.


The range of emotions going through me vary a lot. On one hand, I'm excited! I'm an adult, people have to take me more seriously, it's a brand new chapter of my life and...well, presents! On the other hand, I'm terrified. I can no longer use being a teenager as an excuse for my lack of responsibilities. Teenage years have been the best time of my life- I don't want to let them go! I also feel old. 

However, I have been reflecting on my teenage years a lot and thought I'd share with you all of the lessons I've learnt that I will be carrying with me into my twenties!

1) Friends aren't always forever.
I've had more "best friends" over the last six years than I can count on one hand. Maybe some of them were my fault, but some were the friends fault- we fought, we drifted and all that jazz. I'm friends with just two people from school now, and a few people from college and I consider them all of my best friends- there may not be many but it's definitely quality not quantity! I'm hoping I will manage to hang on to them throughout my twenties (and hopefully beyond that!)

2) You will be screwed over in a BIG way at least once.
It's how you learn to deal with it that makes the difference. You can sit and mope over it or you can cut off the people who have hurt you, learn from it and take that lesson with you- that's what I choose to do. I've been lied to, deceived, manipulated and back stabbed countless times, especially being from an all girls school. As in point one, it's quality not quantity- keep your circle small and full of people you can trust completely.

3) Eyebrows matter.
I went through my teenage years defying the eyebrow trend because I seriously did not care about them. Mine are so light you can hardly see them anyway! Then, about three weeks ago now, I got them waxed and threaded for the first time, then bought myself a brow pencil and started to look after them- well, okay, I admit defeat. Eyebrows do make a difference to your face. Next up, mastering contouring...

4) Trust your gut.
You are always right. Your friends might try and persuade you otherwise, but if you're not 100% happy of comfortable don't do it. It could be saying yes to a boy who wants to take you out, trying drugs, going to a party...whatever it is, if you're not happy, don't do it.

5) Be true to you.
I spent so, so, so, so, so, many years trying to emulate the way the girls around me dressed, did their make up, spent their money and so on. It wasn't until I left secondary school that I learnt who I really wanted to be, and began living that way. I changed massively, and I think a lot of people I bump into from school are surprised when they see me.

6) YOLO...kind of.
You're only a teenager once. So use these wild, crazy, hormone littered years to have all the experiences you want. Dramatic heart break, drunken nights in fields whilst your parents think you're sleeping at a friends house, hanging out at the park for 12 hours a day meeting new people each time, being crazy happy and then crazy sad with no explanation other than "it's just how I feel!", getting random piercings and dying your hair because it seems like such a good idea at the time and so on. Go crazy because other adults will only accept it when you're a teenager. After that come *gulp* responsibilities.

7) Get a job.
I couldn't wait to work and have worked since I was 16- I love earning my own money and don't understand people who don't look for a job as soon as they can! Your teenage years are about the only time you'll have a job without being taxed and having to pay bills, so all the money is yours! Savour it...and maybe save some for later in life. I probably should have done...oh well.

8) Boyfriends rock...when they're right.
I have been with my boyfriend for over five years now and can honestly say I don't regret a moment of it. People told me over and over to put my friends first and to forget about serious relationships at such a young age. Pfft! Most of my friends abandoned me when I got a boyfriend because they didn't like him, I got new friends that I could balance with my boyfriend and no, I do not regret not being able to "get with" other boys at teenage house parties. I love my other half and love that we've been able to grow up together!

9) There will be dark days.
You won't want to get up, you'll feel numb, you won't stop crying. Sometimes there'll be a reason, sometimes there won't be. You'll curl up under the duvet and hibernate for days, sometimes longer. Such is the life of a teenager but things do get better- evidently, because here I am- and life goes on. It feels like forever at the time but I promise it's not.

10) Have fun!
Always have fun, no matter what you do. Make crazy memories, take hundreds of photos, be addicted to social media, fall in love, go to parties, spend too much money, laugh until you feel a six pack forming, go crazy. This doesn't apply to teenagers and is probably one of the most important lessons I will take with me through the rest of my life. Have fun every day. And if you're doing something that's not fun, and not making you happy? Stop. Change something. Life is too short to be miserable.

11) Take every opportunity you can!
I thought being 19 would suck because being 18 had been so good, but I was wrong- it has been the best year of my teenage life. At the start of my teens, I was a little reserved, I dropped all of my clubs and hobbies because they weren't "cool" and some I wish I hadn't. Now, I say yes to as much as I can- and because of it I run this blog, I'm a radio presenter, a trained TV presenter, a freelance writer, a social media manager, run my own magazine and even work with 4music sometimes! I still have to pinch myself that this is my real life and it's all because I learned to say yes to more things and do more by myself! Don't worry what other people will think- if you want to do something that will make you happy or benefit your life, do it! Say yes!

Being a teenager has been a roller coaster, but a lot of fun- being 19 has been amazing  and I have had such a great and successful year! Now, let's see what the twenties will bring...

Love from,
Florence Grace


Germaine Greer

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Recently, feminist icon Germaine Greer stated that, in her own opinion, transgenders (Male to Female) were not women, because they do not talk, act or sound like women. She's now suffering from some serious backlash regarding this situation, claiming she's had people be violent towards her, had things thrown at her, verbal abuse and has no longer been allowed to receive an honorary degree from her college after the things she has said.

Now, I consider myself to be a feminist, I consider myself as a person who treats people the same regardless of age, gender, race, sexual orientation and the like and I don't think that being lesbian or being transgender or being a certain race should prevent you from doing anything, ever. Because it shouldn't!

However, I do find myself in a bit of an awkward situation, as I see both sides of the argument here and whilst I disagree with some of what Germaine says, I also agree with some of it too.

Let's start with is a transgender woman (male transitioned to a female) a woman? This is a hard one for me to comment on. I'm inclined to say yes, because if they feel like a woman, they have female genitalia and a woman is who they want to be then I too shall honour their preferences and I will acknowledge them as a woman. It would be so awful and rude for me not to! However, whilst you still have male genitalia I'm sorry but scientifically you aren't a woman. That doesn't stop my opinion of course, I will consider anybody who wants to be a woman, a woman. It's just how I am! However, I do understand that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and to be quite frank, if Germaine doesn't want to think that male's who have transitioned to females are "women" then she doesn't have to. She stated that she will use feminine pronouns and use their desired names, which is good, but if she doesn't think of them as women- well, no one can make her. 

In the interview, the journalist brought up Will Young's new music video, where a transgender person is attacked in the street. Germaine had clearly done her research and fired back about, "oh the one where he's running down the street naked? Well you try running down the street naked!" and she's right! I haven't seen the music video myself, so my comments may not be strictly accurate but if anyone was running down the street naked they would probably be attacked in one way or another by someone. You're naked in public, regardless of whether you're transgender or not you'll cause a scene!

A point Germaine made that I strongly disagreed with was her comment regarding the suffering of transgender people, stating that they didn't suffer more than any other person. I believe this is totally wrong. The fact that she's received all of this backlash for her comments surely indicates it's because there's still a stigma around transgender people that needs to be removed. It's not easy changing who you were born as, changing despite your parents, family or friends disagreeing, being bullied for being different, discriminated against at hospitals and jobs, starting a completely new life as a new person! Being transgender is a lot harder than not being transgender and I think that was a very ignorant comment for her to make.

Finally, her comments regarding Caitlyn Jenner, that she should not be awarded Woman of the Year. This I totally agree with. Caitlyn was brave, but why should we recognise her and not every other transgender woman? If she wasn't from the Kardashian bubble, her transition would not be half as significant as it has been- it might sound horrible but it's true. There are women who build schools for the less privileged, save lives every day, accomplish incredible academic feats at such young ages, these are deserving of women of the year awards. And also...Caitlyn made her decision as a man. She was a man when she decided to make this brave decision. And yes, I know, they can't give her man of the year as she is now a woman, and I respect that. But I think that if we hunted, we'd find much more deserving women. I'm not talking Beyonce or Angelina Jolie or your typical celeb, I mean someone who has done something worthwhile! Yes I appreciate that transitioning in front of the whole world is probably the most difficult thing Caitlyn has done but...I don't know. I don't think she deserves woman of the year for it.

At the end of the day, everyone has an opinion and no one is going to agree with everyone. I think transgender women are women, Germaine does not. We can't change that, but what we can change is the abuse people with opinions like hers are receiving. It's a waste of time- their opinions, their minds, they aren't going to change! So rather than focus on the few negative people, we should spend time focusing on the larger proportion of people who are trying to eradicate the stigma. Germaine is now receiving a lot of publicity (lucky her) because we won't stop talking about her. Forget her and focus on the positives instead.

But hey...this is all just my opinion!

Love from,
Florence Grace

Problems with being in an LTR

I have been with my significant other for over five years now- that is over half a decade and, in short, an incredibly long time. We've been through our up's and down's, good times and bad and made plenty of memories that I will treasure for a life time. In all honesty, I wouldn't change my relationship for the world. My other half may not be perfect, be neither am I- who is? However, being in a long term relationship (LTR) does come with it's problems, and I'm not talking partner-based problems either. Here's what I struggle with in my LTR...

1) Relationship status. They're your best friend, other half, soul mate and every other term you want to use in the book. They're everything. The word 'boyfriend' or 'girlfriend' simply doesn't cover it...it sounds so immature, like you're 14 and going on your first dates still. But what does work...partner? Significant other? It's just such a dilemma! Also on job applications, "Are you single or married?" Well...I'm neither? Yet "boyfriend" or "girfriend" or "dating" doesn't seem professional enough so you send silent apologies to your partner as your click "single". First world problems.

2) Comparisons. People who have been together for way less than you and your other half have are suddenly getting engaged, having babies, moving in together. The stress is real- should you be at this stage to? Is there something you should be doing that you're not? You thought everything was fine but here's Sandra and Alan getting engaged after 8 months! Clearly you're doing it wrong. It becomes worse when Sandra and Alan come up all smug "Oh, when is it your turn?! Heheheheh" Bore off.

3) Romance. You don't love each other any less, and yes you occasionally do sweet things for each other but in general, you're far more relaxed because you know how you feel about each other. Until you see your boyfriend sat picking his nose whilst your friend receives roses from her boyfriend of 3 weeks. You feel envious...but do you care? Your man is perfect- nose picking and all! Flowers every now and then would be nice though...

4) The jokes. "Oh my GOD you two have been together since, like, FOREVER when are you getting married????" HOW HILARIOUS. Not. Your jokes are uncomfortable, not funny and not appreciated. See point 2- comparisons between other couples who are moving faster than ourselves is not okay! We are happy going at the speed we are. Similarly "Aren't you two bored of each other yet?" and "You only like each other because you know nothing else" are also not appreciated.

5) The spark. It's joked about time and time again but it's true, you do have to make sure the spark is still there. Don't let everything slide because you're comfortable together, you think he/she is your best friend as well as your partner and so can treat them like a mate...it's important to still make the effort whilst knowing you no longer have to try too hard. Striking the right balance in an effortless way is a fine art- but one that will indeed appear to be effortless if you're with the right person. Aw

Are you in or have you been in an LTR? Do you or did you face any of these problems, or perhaps other problems? Let me know in the comments below!

Love from,
Florence Grace

London Fashion Week Beauty Bar!

On Monday 21st September, Bloggers Hangout hosted an event in collaboration with London Fashion Week- the Blogger's Beauty Bar! I love LFW, it's such a creative, exciting time of year, and so I was thrilled to be invited to attend this event!

The first thing that blew me away was the venue...I didn't know much about it, so when I was arrived I was really impressed. It was so classy!

Inside, there were several different rooms, but the actual event was held upstairs, in a really stylish warehouse-esque room, with bare brick walls and wooden shutters for the windows, giving it that perfect, artsy London vibe! The event started at 7, and despite getting there on time, the room was already packed, creating a really exciting atmosphere. There were so many brands with stalls we had no idea where to start!

All of the brands were really enthusiastic and great to talk to, which was really encouraging as I have only been to one event prior to this one, so was a little shy! More often than not, brands approached you rather than the other way round, and all of them were exceptionally generous with samples and goody bags! I came away with my arms quite full, and I can honestly say the products are all amazing. I'll be doing an in depth post for each of the products, but in the mean time, here's a brief over view of what I was lucky enough to receive! 

Lots and lots of beauty gifts!

Soley flew over to the event all the way from Iceland, so I couldn't miss them out! Their products are all handmade with Icelandic herbs, made with the founder of the business' grandmothers recipes. The ingredients all have healing properties, and the lady who ran the company said that they could even help clear up my eczema, so I am excited to give them a try! They smell so fresh and clean, you really know how organic a product they are as soon as you open the lid!

Exfolimate works in the shower, and is attached to a waterproof cord so you can easily hang it from a tap or shower head! I used mine after showering whilst my skin was still wet and the dead skin came away so easily! A really nifty little gadget. 

Unfortunately, the lady behind the Help stall was always super busy (indicating a great product!) so I only got to speak briefly to her husband who didn't know as much details about the product. From my understanding, this particular product is a gel that you eat, and it "heals" your skin from the inside, rather than the outside! What a unique idea, right? It keeps you looking youthful, and if the owners of the business' faces were anything to go by, I will definitely be using this in abundance when I am older!

Another unique range of products were those belonging to the company Skin Chemists. The girl we talked to was lovely, so informative and helpful and spent a good 10-15 minutes chatting to us about the products. I was a little wary at first, because they use ingredients such as bee and snake venom! However, the young lady demonstrated the foundation on herself and some cream on my own hand and it was so smooth on my skin, I fell in love instantly. I can't wait to try these samples and then invest in some full size products to use on a more permanent basis!

The Shea Moisture range was to die for. As soon as you approached the stall you were hit with a heavenly scent. I wanted to eat the products they all smelt so divine! The ladies of the stall opened all the different products so that we could get a good whiff of everything, and as you may be able to read from the label, the products do 1000 and 1 different things! We were generously gifted shampoo and conditioner, and the state my hair is in, I am hoping that they will really be able to fix it!

SASS... great name right? This brand really appealed to me as it was something that isn't really on the market right now- a whole range of products especially for feminine hygiene! We all know that shaving down there is never fun, easy or comfortable, yet SASS have worked hard to create a whole line of products to make it almost enjoyable! Theres a gel/cream for everything, including the prevention of those irritating ingrown hairs, and all of them are developed so as not to mess with the natural pH balance of downstairs!

I was blown away at the generosity of Sensationails and L.A.B2! They instantly handed us a gift bag before they even spoke to us, so we had no clue what was inside. The ladies running the stand were incredibly informative and answered all our questions about the products- nail equipment and a brand new line of brushes! When we left the stall we found not one brush in our gift bags, but a whole box of brushes from the brand new line, as well as a gel nail starter kit and a kit to take off gel nails! Mine was even pink so I was even happier! I have wanted to develop my make up skills, such as contouring, for a while, and the brushes have a step by step guide on the back of them, so now seems the perfect time to get going, whilst using these tactile, super soft brushes!

Finally, the most useful products I think- the Pink Parcel, a subscription box for all of your time of the month needs! I had seen people tweet about this box a few times before, but didn't really know much about them. There is SO much to say about this box that there will be an individual post coming about it...but for now, just look at all of the photos and take in how many treats you receive! I thought you received one treat in the "for you" box...turns out you receive about ten! And one of them is a mascara, so yet again, as my last free mascara has nearly run out, it's been replaced with a new, free mascara! Lucky me...

The ladies from Pink Parcel were so incredibly approachable and I even suggested they feature in my magazine, so we will see if that leads to a collaboration! They even took a cheeky snap of me and my friends and posted it on their social media pages!

Well, to conclude a rather long post, I'd like to just say a MASSIVE thank you to every single brand involved with the event. For being approachable, open minded to working with bloggers, being so generous with samples and gifts and for taking your time to be at the event! Also a massive thank you to Bloggers Hangout for organising the event! I can't wait for the next one now...!

Love from,
Florence Grace

Note to the brands: an individual post will be coming for the products. This is just a summary post. For further details or collaborations please email florencegrace13@gmail.com

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