Marbella with Mark Hill (and win a trip to Paris!)

Remember that time when I entered a competition to go to Marbella with Mark Hill? Well, the secrets out - home girl over here only went and won the bloody thing! So for any of you that followed me on Instagram (@cocochicblog FYI) last weekend, you'll already know the ins and outs of what I got up to in Marbs, but for those of you that don''s a little photo diary of what we got up to in the three days we were there. And yeah, before you ask, I'm still pale as hell. 

So during my three days of experiencing Marbella I experienced a bunch of emotions. I went two full days without really sleeping (sleepy Steph), ate my weight in free food (happy Steph), sipped Champagne in the middle of the day (dopey Steph), contracted a cold on the second day (sneezy Steph)  and found myself at places like Pangea, Ocean Club and the Melia Spa Hotel - which by the way, has the best buffet style breakfast imaginable. Needless to say all that equates to one big fat happy Steph. Basically, I pretty much became all of the seven dwarves whilst I was out there. Not bad going eh? Anyway..

Now obviously the whole trip was centred around a certain someone called Mark Hill, who is near enough the king of all things hair. In total we spent around two days with him and his partner in crime Julian and managed to get a preview of his new product re-launch (which is the bomb, BTW) that launches next month. Think sexy ombre packaging and some, er, interesting, looking appliances that work wonders on even the most badly behaved hair (AKA mine). A few of my favourite products from the launch have to be the XXL Volume Shampoo (hello anti-gravity hair) and the Mark Hill Styling Primer (which is pretty much a 500 in 1 product), purely because they're the perfect duo for lazy girls like me since they do pretty much everything with little to no effort.

And of course, a general favourite of mine had to be the Mark Hill team. No word of a lie, Mark is one of the nicest guys I've ever met, and I'm not just saying that because he gave my hurr a sexy lil update - pics coming soon of course - but because he genuinely was the definition of the word bae. And trust me, I don't use that word lightly (if ever). 

Anyway, I'm sure you're all being lovely humans and listening (or rather, reading) to me rant and rave about how much of a great time I had, but this hardly benefits you guys in anyway, does it? Sooo I've decided to give you guys a little heads up about a competition in which you can win a weekend trip to Paris for two with flights and hotels included (and a Michelin star meal to top it all off as well). The competition is open until October 31st and all you have to do to enter is share the hashtag #perfectparis2015 on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. What, did you really think I was just going to boast for an entire blog post without giving you guys a lil summin? Pah.

Oh, I've never been to Paris, so you know, if you're wondering about who to take as your plus one I guess I could step in if I really had to. Take one for the team and all..

Huge huuuge thank you to Label PR and Mark Hill for organising our weekend away in Marbella, and shout out to my fellow blogging galz Emily, Charlotte, Whitney and Soph for being mega babes throughout the entire trip. Not sure I've ever seen so many people take flatlays of food at one time..

Every day hair tutorial with Mark Hill #MakeYourMark

First up, welcome to a million and one pictures of my face. As if you didn't see enough of my mug on the blog as it was, I've now gone and potentially broken the world record for the most amount of face-time in one blog post. But hey, at least if I ever go missing you'll be able to recognise me on the back of a milk carton (do people still do that?). It's good to be prepared.

Anyway, a few days ago I was set a challenge by Mark Hill to style my hair using some of the newest products in the Mark Hill range - including the Freeze Spray, Primer and XL Volume Shampoo - to be in with the chance of winning a trip to Marbella with a bunch of other bloggers (and the man himself). Is this real life?

So obviously I was (and still am!) ridiculous excited. That is, until it dawned on me that I have absolutely zero skill at styling my own hair, let alone creating a stand out look fit for a competition. You know Hagrid from Harry Potter? That's pretty much me on a good day.

But then I realised that you guys don't exactly read this blog because you want perfection (which we all know doesn't exist), you guys stick around because - hopefully - you think the things I say and do are pretty relatable. So what did I do? I made my hair relatable.

So there I was armed with my camera and tripod, with a mirror in hand and all the products surrounding me, and then what did I do? I last minute decided to scrap the mirror entirely. Bare with me on this one - I haven't quite lost the plot just yet..

Now I don't know about you guys but I like to get ready as quickly as possible in the mornings, just to make sure I have a few extra minutes in bed (it all adds up, right?). This means that more often than not I'll actually style my hair without even looking at it (Youtube videos are way more important) so I like to keep whatever I'm doing to my hair fairly simple, and of course, pretty much full-proof. Basically, If I can do it, anyone can.

So I decided to create two looks for this campaign - one hairstyle up, one hairstyle down. They both take pretty much the same amount of time (about ten to fifteen minutes), are fit for just about any occasion and look good whether they're styled to perfection or thrown together in a hurry. And they're easy. Did I mention they were easy? Let's get straight to the tutorials..

Bouncy beachy waves

This is probably my favourite look of the moment, purely because it looks a lot more polished than it actually is. I feel like it takes my flat, straight hair from a 2/10 to a solid 8/10 in just about no time at all and - better yet - it seems to look better and better as the day goes on.

You will need

Mark Hill XL Volume Shampoo
Mark Hill Styling Primer (it contains heat protection too!)
Mark Hill BIG Tease Backcombers Best Friend
A wide-toothed brush or comb
Mark Hill Wild Waver Styling Wand
Mark Hill Freeze Spray


Prep the hair by washing it with the Mark HIll XL Volume Shampoo.


Apply the Mark Hill Styling Primer to the lengths of the hair


Pay close attention to the ends to help protect them from heat


Comb hair through using a wide-toothed comb or brush, ensuring there are no knots. Part the hair as you like!


Blow dry the hair straight by using a comb or brush to help direct the hair. This will help it look more sleek!


Add waves to the lengths of hair using the Mark Hill Wild Waver


Keep the curls in place by spraying them with the Mark Hill Freeze Spray


Brush curls through and add volume to the roots using the BIG Tease Comb

Effortless messy pony tail

I like to think of this look as a slightly more fancy version of your standard every day pony tail. I decided to keep the loose waves in this look help add volume to the style, but you can make it super fancy by leaving it straight and adding a bit of the Mark Hill Bedazzled Anti-Humidity Shine Spray for extra glossiness. If you want to re-create this look, check the tutorial above and head back here once you're done!


Mark Hill BIG Tea Backcombers Best Friend
A wide-toothed comb or brush
Mark Hill Freeze Spray
Hairband(s) and bobby pins


Scrape the hair back into a ponytail using the Mark Hill BIG Tease comb


Backbrush the hair using the Mark Hill BIG Tease comb 


Comb through a section of hair from underneath the ponytail


Wrap the piece of hair around the base of the ponytail and secure with some pins to help hide the hair band


Secure your hair using the Mark Hill Freeze Spray (Refrain from eating hair because of how good it smells)

Would loove to know what you guys think of the looks I created! Do let me know if you want any more posts like this in the future too, because - if I'm honest - I had way too much fun making it. Keep your fingers crossed for me and Marbella!!