Friday, 27 February 2015

The Best 2 Bronzer's You'll Ever Need!

best bronzing powders, best bronzers

The Best 2 Bronzer's You'll Ever Need!

Oh boy, do I need a tan! I have been relying on bronzers lately to add a bit of colour back in to my skin. I have only started using them in the past twelve months, but I believe I have already found my favourites!

I feel like there's a skill to using to bronzers which I've yet to get the hang of but both Benefit's Hoola and Liz Earle Radiant Glow Bronzer are so simple to use, it easy to achieve the natural, tanned, streak-free look. 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

STELLÉ Audio Speaker Clutch Bag

wearable technology, stelle audio, stelle audio mini clutch speaker

There are huge efforts to fuse fashion and technology but nothing has quite tickled my fancy... until now. It is an emerging trend that is only set to get bigger but in terms of style, there is still a long way to go. I haven't been too attracted to any wearable technology, as useful as they are, I think most of them look a little ugly. 

So when I was introduced to the Stellé Audio Mini-Clutch Speaker*, it interested me for a few reasons. One) As far as wearable technology goes, I LOVE the look of the design. Two) I wanted a closer look at both the speaker feature and how it functions as a bag. Is it heavy? Would I wear it? Are the speakers good? I wanted to know more. Three) Niki recently bought a cute looking Sony wireless speaker and I wanted a speaker of my own! And finally, four) It's a bag AND speakers in one... Sound can be played out of a bag which is pretty cool so I thought you guys would like to know about it!

Stelle Audio Speaker Clutch Bag, wearable technology

To use it as a speaker, you have to pair it up with the device, not to mention you would also have to switch it on. So, don't worry, sound is going to start blasting out automatically unless you authorise the pairing (I only mention this because that is what I initially thought it would do!)

Here are the functions of the technology side of the Stellé Audio Mini Clutch Speaker:

- Wirelessly streams music from Bluetooth devices
- Wireless range up to 50 feet
- Built in speakerphone
- 15-hour rechargable lithium-ion battery
- Connects to non-Bluetooth devices via aux-in cable
- Can charge your phone if it runs out of battery (USB-Enabled devices only)
- Six watt stereo digital amplifier

Stelle Audio Speaker Clutch Bag, wearable technology

For those who are interested in the fashion aspect of the design, the bag a hard-cased clutch bag with interchangeable wrist bracelet and a detachable metal chain so you can choose to wear it as a shoulder bag. There's a huge mirror inside the bag, and the interior is made of real leather. The whole thing is packaged really well too, it certainly has a premium feel to it, you know you're getting a good quality product.

The chain, however, is really thin and the bag/speaker is actually quite heavy so I'm not sure how this would feel on your shoulder, it might start to feel a tad uncomfortable towards the end of the night.  I suppose you could just carry it like you would a regular clutch bag.

The price of this bag ranges from £129 to £169, so it isn't cheap. My honest feelings about this is that I don't think I would wear this on a night out as it doesn't fit that many items but most importantly, there's a high possibility that someone might spill their drink all over the bag - not great if your bag is expensive and made up of electrical components! There is also no need to take a portable speaker out with you to places where they're going to play loud music.... But there are plenty of other occasions when you could use this clutch bag, it is quite a formal looking accessory. It does have a plain side so as long as you remember to carry it with the buttons facing towards the back, it looks like a regular clutch bag.

Stelle Audio Speaker Clutch Bag, wearable technology

You guys know I love bags so I was most excited about the bag itself than the speakers. It looks great on the website, and even better in real life. But half of the bag inside is covered with a large mirror, which makes sense as the speaker part of the design needs to be concealed. This doesn't leave a lot of room to put your belongings in to but it will fit the essentials. It just about fits my iPhone5 in, one lipstick, one single key (no keychains attached), some money and debit/credit cards, which is all you need on a night out. 

Stelle Audio Speaker Clutch Bag, wearable technology

I will get a lot more use out of it as a speaker though. It is so easy to pair it up with Bluetooth devices, so I'll use the speakers when I'm watching movies, TV shows and YouTube video from my iPad in my room or whilst I'm having a bath. With it having a wireless range of 50 feet, I don't have to take my laptop or iPad in to the bathroom with me, so I no longer have to worry about damaging them or dropping it in water. I've also paired it up with my laptop because the speakers on my laptop has a really poor sound quality, and it does make a difference to the viewing experience, especially when you're watching a film. I'm sure I'll use it to play music when I have people over too.

Overall, the idea of this product is awesome. It's not completely perfect, it's not so practical as a bag and as I'd personally would like more space inside to store a few extra items of my belongings but Stellé Audio have managed to apply both fashion and technology together in one single design, it is a compromise that many companies get so wrong but this bag has got style on it's side. 

Stellé Audio products is available to buy from their website or Selfridges. The clutch is available in three designs and prices range from £129 to £169. What are your thoughts on this bag? What are your views on 'wearable technology?' Let me know your thoughts in the comments!


Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Food : 5 Toasted Breakfasts To Try

pancakes, pancake and fruit,

I have to admit, I'm not usually one for a sit down breakfast. I'm always really conscious that breakfast is the most important meal of the day but I don't have much of an appetite when it's so early in the morning (I'm totally not a morning person) so it's usually a cup of coffee or a tea whilst I check my emails, and then I'll grab a muesli bar or toast at 10 or 11am to settle my tummy before lunch time. 

I know that things have to change and I need to make time for a better start to the day! I feel the difference in my mood and brain power on the days I can stomach breakfast! What I need is, when it comes to breakfasts, I need to be a bit more imaginative and interesting (and preferably toasted) and that's why I've turned to Pinterest for some ideas (of course!). Where else would you find well presented meal ideas that actually looks appetising! And unlike a lot of the things I usually pin, breakfast seems to be the easiest to make!

Here are some toasted breakfast ideas I'd like to try in the next few weeks!

french toast, breakfast ideas,

Making little nuggets of french bread isn't something I've ever thought of doing but sometimes you just want food to be bite-sized, it's easier to eat and looks less daunting. These french toast nuggets are made of baguette that's sliced up in little pieces. Obviously, I couldn't eat this every single day but it makes a nice treat - and it's definitely something I'd leap out of bed for! 

Breakfast Pizza
Breakfast Pizza

This looks so delicious, and actually looks healthy (or at least that's what I'm telling myself!). The base is an extremely light and thin crisp topped with prosciutto, kale, smoked mozzarella, shaved parmessan, truffle oil and an egg. A very indulgent breakfast indeed!

hole in the bread, breakfast idea,
Hole In The Bread

Hole In The Bread is just a tidy, neater version of fried egg on toast (one of my favourite breakfasts). You basically cut a hole out of the middle and cook and egg inside it! Would be quite handy as it wouldn't be as messy as cooking a proper fried egg where oil get splattered everywhere!

egg on toast
Egg and Pesto (or avocado)

Those are some good lookin' eggs right there! Sticking with the eggy theme, here's one that is perfectly boiled with a side of pesto spread. For me, I think that pesto is perhaps too strong for the morning, I would probably swap this for a sliced and mashed up avocado with a sprinkle of sea salt.

Egg Waffles (or Bubble Waffles)

I've only ever eaten egg waffles when I'm in Hong Kong. They make them fresh and you just eat them plain. I think you can also get them from German markets over Christmas time, with your choice of filling (nutella, peanut butter, chocolate, etc). The batter isn't difficult to make, but you do need a waffle iron of some sort. A bubble waffle maker will give you the exact effect as the picture above, but I think they're quite difficult to track down in the UK so a belgian waffle maker would do the trick - it won't look the same but the taste will still be there.

What is your favourite toasted breakfast? Will you be trying any of these?

Follow me on Pinterest to see more food and meal recipes! Or pop over to the featured Pinterest campaign for some interesting breakfast ideas!

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All imagery belongs to the authors of the sites I have linked.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

A Week With Fiorelli

monochrome accessories, fiorelli bags, black court shoes

Last week, I collaborated with Fiorelli for my first ever Instagram Takeover. Being hugely in to Instagram, I often see these collaborative takeovers between a blogger and a brand pop up quite often. I was excited to be asked by Fiorelli to create content for their IG because a) I love social media campaigns and b) I totally looove handbags! I didn't have much time but as soon as the bag arrived, I couldn't wait to get on with it because I already had a lot of content ideas.

I was gifted a Teagan Satchel by Fiorelli in the monochrome snake skin print and as you can see, it's very much my style, satchels are my bag of choice. I was a bit worried about the print being too "snakey", it's not my favourite texture but it's quite subtle against the white faux leather and you can hardly tell. 

The bag comes with a detachable strap, and there are four compartments on the side plus a concealed pocket on the back. It isn't one of those bags where you can fit your whole life in to but it stores the essentials and a few extras. My iPad Mini fits in to it perfectly, which surprised me because I didn't think it would. It's such a neat little bag which I'm sure will feature in some of my outfit posts soon!

If you're a fan of handbag, follow Fiorelli on Instagram because it's that time of year where new season designs are released and you'll get to see some exclusives (woooo! Spring/Summer accessories!) You can pop over to Fiorelli's Instagram to see my photos from the Takeover. Here are a few:

how to style a satchel, ways to style a satchel, fiorelli bags

How would you style Fiorelli's Teagan Satchel?


Friday, 20 February 2015

Yves Rocher Perfume // Comme Une Evidence

Yves Rocher perfume, Comme Une Evidence

La Parfum Comme Une Evidence from Yves Rocher*

Yves Rocher was founded in the late 50's and uses plants to formulate their products. They have their own botanical garden where they grow 1100 species of plants to use in their products which is sold at affordable prices. Whilst the basis of the brand is heavily focused on botanical beauty and the bulk of the products are indeed made from natural ingredients, they do use low dosage of preservatives recognised by the European scientific authorities, and I am reassured that most Yves Rocher do not contain parabens (but some do). I want to be transparent about that as I am aware that a lot of you are interested in knowing this sort of thing, and it can make a difference in whether you buy in to a brand or not. One thing's for certain, though, their products are not tested on animals.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

A La Carte Make-Up : {Beauty Review}

a la carte make up, high quality make up

It's always exciting to try out new make-up, especially when you've been in your comfort zone for so long. With both blusher and lipstick, I tend to stick to a certain shades and then I'll just buy those same colours from different brands. When A La Carte kindly asked me to choose a couple of things, I decided to venture out and pick colours I wouldn't normally go for. You know what I mean! The 'oh, this is so pretty but I'm not sure if it will suit me' type of shades.

I've only heard of A La Carte from a beauty box where I received an eyebrow definer but the shade wasn't suitable for me so I couldn't use it. They offer a whole range of products from cosmetics to skincare, and even offer a bespoke consultation service where you can create your own palette, mix your own eyeshadow and lipstick, or blend a custom foundation to match your skin tone perfectly. I think that's a really great option for special occasions like when you're getting married.

All of their products are made from the finest ingredients with the majority of the products parabens (only water-based products contain a small quantity of preservatives). They don't test on animals, and everything from A La Carte is suitable for vegetarians. 

a la carte lipstick, coral lipstick
coral lipstick, lipstick swatch

A La Carte Moisture Plus Lipstick*

There were so many lipsticks and lipglosses to choose from. There are 15 lip products in total, and each of those have a wide choice of shades and finishes. I'm not familiar with A La Carte lip products, and I don't often hear about them either so I didn't know what the formula is like. I thought I'd play it safe by going for the Moisture Plus Lipstick, it sounds like it would condition my lips and keep them moisturised throughout the day. The formula is described as rich, creamy and conditioning - sounded pretty perfect to me. 

It was quite difficult to pick a shade because I knew that what I saw on the screen would be different to what it is in real life. I would normally go straight for a hot pink but I wanted to try coral this time. As you can see, Coral is a really lovely shade and when I swatched it on the back of my hand, things looks promising.

However, when I applied it on to my lips, it didn't blend as well as it show on the swatch. I have dry lips so I used a sugar scrub prior to application, but it still picked up on tiny flaws. It does cling on every imperfection, similar to what a matte lipstick does. In fact, the finish of Coral was in betwee a matte and cream, there isn't much of a sheen to it. Your lips need to be 100% absolutely perfect before using the A La Carte Moisture Plus Lipstick. For me, it was difficult to make it work but for those who are used to wearing matte lipsticks, this would be great for you. The formula is creamy and the lipstick itself is very comfortable to wear. The colour pay off is great too, so I am a bit gutted that it isn't completely suitable for me. Perhaps I will give it another go in the Summer time. 

There are 57 shades available in Moisture Plus range, and retail at £23 each.

pink blusher, pink blush, a la carte matte blush touch

A La Carte Matte Touch Blush*

I'm not as fussy when it comes to blushers, and there aren't many faults that I can pick in powder blushers just as long as they're not packed with nasty chemicals - which A La Carte is free from.

Again, just like the lipsticks, there are a lot of choices such as cheek tint, powders, creams, bronzer, highlighters... several to choose from! I picked the Matte Blush Touch powder for cheeks in the shade 'Blush'. There I don't think there's a single shade I wouldn't be happy with in the Matte Blush Touch collection, I love them all but I picked Blush as I don't have anything as light as this. 

Blush is a powder pink and I was expecting it to transfer on to skin as such, but it's goes on slightly brighter than you'd think. It's high in pigment and looks very 'rosy pink' on your cheeks with a lovely matte finish! It doesn't cake it and it isn't streaky. The packaging is nice too, it's shiny, high quality and comes with a plastic protective flap so that the powder doesn't cause the mirror to be dusty and dirty. A small brush is included with it too which actually works well as a blush brush. I would definitely try the other blushers, and maybe try the cream blush next time.

I would highly recommend the Matte Blush Touch, which is available in 25 colours at £30 or you can create your own unique shade. A La Carte is available to buy from their website.

Have you tried anything from A La Carte before? As I'm new to the brand, I'd love to know what your recommendations are!


Wednesday, 18 February 2015

LUSH Bubble Bars

LUSH bubble bars, lush bubbleroon, lush unicorn horn, rose bubble bar
unicorn horn, unicorn horn bubble bar, lush unicorn horn
lush rose bubble bar
lush bubblegrub
lush bubblegrub

The bubble bars and bubbleroons at LUSH are my favourite bath products of theirs. If you've never tried them before, you have to pick a couple up next time you're in LUSH. I recommend The Comforter and Brightside, you can slice them in chunks enough for 4 or 5 baths. 

Depending on how bubbly you like your baths, you basically break a chunk off the bubble bars and run them under running water. It crumbles up and you end up with a mountain of lovely, soft bubbles. On a recent trip to the LUSH store, I treated myself to a few bubble bars. These are all limited edition so you might not have long to buy these until they're gone again.

Unicorn Horn, £3.25:
As soon as I knew that they were releasing this, I knew I would want one! I got one for me and another for my little sis. It's a really pretty bubble bar with the prettiest swirls of colours, and there are supposed to be candy stars on the outside but none of the Unicorn Horns at the store at visited had them so either they've fallen off or they didn't put any on. Slightly disappointed about that. This is part of their Valentine's Day collection so sadly, I think they have discontinued it (there are still some left over in the stores but once it's gone, it's gone). The lady at the shop told me that it has sold really well, so hopefully there are plans to bring it back next year or do something similar as part of the permanent range. I'd love to see more "unicorn" themed products - it's so pretty and right up my street! Unicorn Horn is a creamy, lavendar scent.

Rose Bubble Bar, £3.95:
I saw this one last year and someone told me that it is inspired by the rose in Beauty And The Beast, and I would never have known because it doesn't say on the label. I like knowing what a product or design is inspired by because the story behind it is what makes it special. Anyway, when I eventually decided to buy it, the Rose Bar wasn't available (I didn't realise it was limited edition at the time) so I didn't hesitate in getting one which I think it is part of the Mother's Day collection. It is a very small bubble bar and expensive for what it is and the size you're getting, it will only be enough for one bath. It has a subtle sweet rose scent with a kick of citrus. 

Bubblegrub Bubbleroon, £2.95:
Bubbleroons are similar to bubble bars, except bubbleroon are often contains shea butter in so it makes the bathwater creamy and milky. I couldn't resist the Bubblegrub, I thought it looked really cute. I normally give everything a whiff when I'm at LUSH but for some reason, I just went on looks this time! I saw how adorable Bubblegrub was and decided to buy it, so I put him in my basket and that was that! It wasn't until I got home that I really didn't like the scent at all. It smells like a combination of stale cheap wine mixed, soil and rotten fruit. I feel bad being mean about something so cute but I regret buying it, he is one smelllyyly bug! The scent is too earthy, smokey and woody for me, it's an extremely overpowering smell. Bubblegrub is made with vetivert and sandalwood, is part of the Mother's Day range and cost £2.95 each. You can get two baths out of this one.

Have you tried any of these yet?


Thursday, 12 February 2015

Affordable Pamper Products

beauty blog uk, beauty blogger uk, i love cosmetic

To celebrate the release of The Best Of Me DVD, I received an exciting 'girls night in' themed package which contained the DVD (of course), a new set of PJ's and a bunch of 'I Love..." pamper goodies! 

the best of me dvd, beauty blog uk, beauty blogger uk, i love cosmetics

That's an exciting parcel, right?! I couldn't help but dig right in to the pamper goodies (naturally!), so I tested, sprayed and lathered!

I always think that I Love... is a fun, budget version of Philosophy. They're not part of the same company but there are some similarities. The new I Love... collection are mango and papaya, strawberries and cream, raspberry and blackberry, coconut and cream, peachy passionfruit, and vanilla and ice cream! Tell me your mouth isn't watering right now! In addition to the new range, there is also lemon and limes, minty choco chip, juicy watermelon, and honey almond. They come in various products such as body butter, bubble bath, shower gels, body sprays, lip balm, lip gloss, hand cream, body lotion, body exfoliator, and hand wash. 

My pamper package contained the following products for me to try:

 beauty blog uk, beauty blogger uk, i love cosmetics

Strawberries and Cream Body Butter, £2.99
This is a really affordable body butter, it costs only £2.99! It looks a like The Body Shop body butters, both 200ml tubs and just like The Body Shop body butters, this strawberries and cream also contains parabens, but to be fair, their body butters, along with their lip products, are the only product in their range that does contains parabens. The consistency isn't as thick as The Body Shop's, it feels more creamy than it does buttery but it is moisturising, easy to spread and absorbs quickly. The smell is a bit on the artificial side, but pleasant all the same.

Raspberry and Blackberry Bubble Bath and Shower Creme, £2.99
I love my bath products so I think this one's my favourite out of the bunch. It's just a standard bubble bath with a nice juicy scent to it. You can pour it under running tap for a relaxing bubble bath, or lather straight on to skin when you're having a shower. 

Mango and Papaya Hand Lotion, £1.99
Another lovely hand lotion to add to my huge stash of them! I have got in to the habit of using them every hour or two! I'm going to save this Mango and Papaya hand lotion for the Summer time because it's just a lovely, summery scent. It feels refreshing and it absorbs in to skin very quickly without feeling greasy. It contains coconut oil and shea butter to help your hands feeling smooth and nourished.

Mango and Papaya Body Spritzer, £2.99
Remember when body sprays were all the rage when you were in secondary school? My friends and I were obsessed with Impulse and I always had one in my school bag. These days, I'm more about the deodorants (with a antiperspirant properties) and perfumes (scent lasts longer), I don't remember the last time I used a body spray or spritzer - I don't know if they really do anything apart from a quick burst of fragrance that fades after an hour - but I'm glad it has made it's way back in to my life, it brings back some good memories! I suppose it does feel refreshing to use after a shower on a hot day and it is nice to use after a body cream to prolong the scent. I'll save this one for the Summer too.

Minty Choco Chip Lip Balm, £1.25
The balm itself is white with a green heart through the core which is a cute little detail. It smells minty but I don't detect the chocolate fragrance. A nice lip balm for £1.25 but the white balm makes my lips white! The balm isn't transparent and when you use it straight from the stick to lips, it goes on quite thick, like a lotion. Although it's fine when you blend it in with your fingers. I will still keep this in my make-up bag as a back up but I won't be repurchasing it.

I Love... Cosmetics are available in Superdrug, Boots, Matalan and Argos.


Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Current Skincare Routine - Winter Edition

Skincare Routine, winter skincare products, winter skincare routine

I have two different skincare routines throughout the year, one for cold weather (that'll be Autumn, Winter AND the majority of Spring!) and another routine for Summer. When it's cold, I tend to use creamier, richer products to protect my skin from the cold throughout the day and restore moisture and elasticity. I can't use the same products in the Summer because it makes my skin oily so I tend to switch to something a bit lighter, contains SPF and perhaps control the excess of oils. Summer is months away though, so lets focus on the present! THE BLOODY COLD!

A few days ago, I blogged about my Winter Skin Saviour Recommendations, but did not include that many face care products (because I had planned to do this blogpost for a few weeks now, I just hadn't got round to writing it!) So today, I'm going to talk about what skincare products I use on my face.

Skincare Routine, winter skincare products, winter skincare routine

The Dailies

Bee Good 3-in-1 Cleansing Water:
Cleansing waters are so convenient, it's great for the morning if you're in a rush as it's quick and feels refreshing on skin. It removes make-up, cleanses and tones. I find most cleansing waters to dry my skin out but this Honey and Wild Water Mint cleansing from Bee Good is delicate and hydrating. It isn't harsh and it doesn't strip your skin. I use it on evenings to remove the majority of my make up, however it doesn't remove eye make up very well but this is where the next bit comes in to play...

Every time I do a skincare routine post like this, this little beauty gets right up in your face! It is honestly my favourite cleanser of all time! I have mentioned it loads on my blog so won't go in to much detail, but this cream cleanser removes every last inch of make-up (even eye-make up), dirt and grime. I use this twice daily.

Facial Oils: 
I don't use a toner after cleansing because toner doesn't do good things to my skin. I have tried to find one that suits me but I have wasted so much money that I've given up! Skipping this step hasn't done any (visible) harm to my skin... but anyway! After I have cleansed, I'll use two drops of facial oil to smooth, repair and protect. I highly recommend Antonia Burrell's Facial Oil but I've finished my bottle of that, every single drop of it, so I'm trying out cheaper options to see how they match up. I have a choice of two at the moment and that's the Organic Surge Replenishing Facial Oil* (shown in photo) and Jurlique Skin Balancing Face Oil - both made with natural, organic ingredients and free from nasty synthetic chemicals. I haven't decided which one I like the best but I'm currently putting them to the test which takes time and patience. I once put loads on in one go and woke up with very dry, scaly skin which lasted for two weeks!

Claudia Louch Restore Face Cream*:
Before this, I was using Claudia Louch Jojoba day cream which was really light and did amazing things to my skin! After finishing that, I switched to their Restore Botanical face cream which is much richer, great for dry skin and more suitable for using throughout Winter. Because it's quite rich, it works really well as a night cream. It is a non-comedogenic, mild, 94% natural cream is formulated with grape seed oil, jojoba, aloe vera gel, avocado, green tea and shea butter. 

Skincare Routine, winter skincare products, winter skincare routine

The Twice-A-Week Treatments

I don't use all of these products in one go. These are just some of the treatment products I use twice a week, and I alternate between them depending on how my skin feels. I use an exfoliator followed by face masks; The pores are open after you have exfoliated so to prevent a break out, always use a face mask to treat and condition the skin. 

If I've worn a lot of make up or been outside a lot, then I'll treat the skin with a good quality scrub and face mask twice a week. Otherwise, once is enough. I am very lucky to be given a lot of skincare products to try and usually, I will repurchase! They all work different so depending on what my skin needs, so there is always one that I can use to help restore and balance it out again. 

Here are some of the face masks treatments that I've been loving this past six months:

Jurlique Daily Exfoliating Cream*:
This one is different to all of the other exfoliators I have ever used because it's doesn't contain rough particles and it doesn't feel "scrubby". It a creamy consistency that contains oats, honey and almonds (it does smell a bit like breakfast) and you wouldn't think that it would have any effect because the oats are so soft, but it does indeed lift away the dead skin cells and leaves your skin looking bright and feeling smooth. Jurlique products are powerful and potent, and this isn't any different, so you only need to use a tiny bit of these for it to work wonders. If you're not a fan of rough face scrubs, this one might just be the one for you!

REN Flash Rinse 1-Minute Facial:
I wrote a full review of this one. I got it for Christmas after trying a PR sample of it last year. It's not an exfoliator and it's not quite a mask, it's just a very unique product which transforms your skin in 60 seconds. It isn't suitable for those with sensitive skin so please do a patch test before using this. Read my full review of REN Flash Rinse here.

Balance Me Radiance Face Mask:
This is another one that pops up on my blog every now and then! The first time I tried it was two or three years ago, I was sent a sample of it and it has been a favourite ever since! This is 3rd or 4th repurchase, I absolutely love it. I do sometimes prefer the two-phase exfoliating and face mask process but conveniently, Balance Me Radiance Face Mask is an exfoliator and a mask in one! It contains ground walnut shells which scrubs away dirt and dead skin cells, and then you just leave the kaolin clay mask for ten minutes. It's 98% natural and is an effective product for all skin types.

Antonia Burrell Mask Supreme 7-in-1*:
When I received this mask and read that it's a 7-in-1 product, I was like "oh, really? That's a big claim!" The seven wonders are: hydrates, smooth, detoxify, repair, clarify, illuminate, protect and perfect your skin. It has proven to do all of those things and the results are noticeable, skin is brighter, softer, plump and radiant. When something is this good, and luxurious, I try to use sparingly. I give my skin a little treat by using Mask Supreme about twice a month for a deep cleanse.

The Little Extras

Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist:
I don't use this rosewater every single day but in the past fortnight, I have found myself reaching for it. Sometimes, I apply this in the morning instead of a facial oil because an oil can take a while to absorb properly and when I'm in a hurry, I just don't have time to wait around for that. I mist a bit of the hydrating rosewater on to clean skin before I apply a moisturiser. 

Sk:n Anti Blemish Pore Refining Lotion:
If you are someone who is prone to breakouts and acne, this Anti-Blemish lotion will help control your pores by clearing them and prevent spots occurring. Again, this is not part of my regular routine as breakouts only happen sporadically - but along with spot treatment, this lotion is on stand-by for when I am going through a flare up (most likely due to hormones and stress). Needless to say though, it is most effective when you're using it on a regular basis.

Eye Cream:
I do use eye cream on a daily basis, but it is something that I have recently introduced in to my routine. I've only been using eye treatments for a year now, I haven't tried many so I'm not so clued up on it as I should be. I was using HealGel Eye before but decided to try Sk:n Brightening and Firming Eye Cream. It is moisturising but I found the cream to be quite heavy, and doesn't absorb so easily. I think, for now, as a newbie to eye treatments, I'll stick to an eye gel that feels refreshing and just sinks in straight away.

Have you tried any of these products before? What did you think of them?
What skincare do you recommend?


Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Topshop Wishlist // February

topshop spring 2015

▹ Hover over the cross icon for price info or click the icon to go to direct product page

I promise that these Topshop wishlists are not going to be a permanent monthly feature because browsing through every inch of their site and picking out my favourite pieces isn't too good for my bank balance! (And it probably isn't good for yours either!) But don't we all need a bit of colour - and possibly lightweight materials - back in to our wardrobes? (Yes, we do!)

I've picked out a few things that would make a nice transition from Winter to Spring, with brighter accessories to brighten up your lives. It's easy to be blinded by all the beautiful, fashion-forward designs when you're in Topshop (or in this case, checking the website) but the sensible side of me will always question how practical it is and how much wear I'm going to get out of one item.

All the clothes I've picked out here have got a beautiful print on it and as fancy as they look, each and every one of them will go with plain counterparts, so there are various ways to wear the same item. The pair of trousers, for example, can be worn with a white vest top, t-shirt, cropped knit, blouse, block colour top, blazer, leather jacket, or even a clashing print if you're daring enough! It can be worn with flats in the daytime and heels for the evening. Maybe even sandals during Summer. (I've just convinced myself to buy the £42 pair of trousers, haven't I!!)

Have you got your eye on anything of these Topshop beauties? What's your favourite item from this lot? 


Monday, 9 February 2015

Beauty Recommendations: Winter Skin Saviours

beauty blog, beauty blogger uk, winter skin saviours

Beauty Recommendations: Winter Skin Saviours

This past fortnight has been so incredibly cold, and the freezing weather has caused my skin to suffer. I'm getting so fed up and I need this lot to get me through it! The colder temperature has really battered my skin and dulls the complexion not only on my face but also on my hands, arms, legs, feet, basically everywhere! I need this lot to help my skin look and feel healthy and nourished again!

Here are some of my Winter skin saviour recommendations:

Sunday, 8 February 2015

How To Wear: A White Playsuit

fashion blogger uk, floral playsuit
fashion blogger uk, floral playsuit, how to wear playsuit
fashion blogger uk, floral playsuit, how to wear playsuit
fashion blogger uk, floral playsuit, how to wear playsuit
fashion blogger uk, floral playsuit

Daisy Playsuit* Get The Label ▴ Blouse Topshop ▴ Coin Necklace* Azuni London ▴ Watch* Citizen

I can't stand this Winter any longer! It's making me so miserable so I'm going to pack away my chunky jumpers and prepare myself for Spring... starting with this pretty daisy print playsuit! It's by AX Paris via Get The Label which is a website that offers huge discount on branded clothing such as Adidas, Nike, Lacoste and Levi to name a few. I picked something from AX Paris because it was the only brand on the site that suits me, and I'm a fan of them already. AX Paris designs some pretty awesome dresses and playsuits that fits my petite frame quite well. It's such a cute little playsuit which can be layered up for the colder days or worn on it's own when Summer arrives. It has the most adorable scalloped edge hem which is a such a sweet little detail. It also zips up from the back and nips in at the waist, it's such a flattering fit.

I have worn this playsuit a few times, each time to dinner with family or friends, and I'm surprised I haven't spilt anything on it yet. I am usually extra clumsy when I wear white but so far, so good! The accessories I've chosen to wear with this outfit is gold, but simple. The coin necklace is my favourite piece of jewellery to wear lately because it has the following quote engraved on to it "happiness is the journey, not the destination", and my watch is chunky one from Citizen. Finally, in terms of footwear, I have been wearing black patent leather ballet flats and also black cut-out ankle boots with this outfit.


Saturday, 7 February 2015

Organic, Cruelty Free, Vegan Make-Up: Inika Cosmetics

mineral makeup, organic beauty brand, organic make up, inika cosmetics

Organic, Cruelty Free, Vegan Make-Up

I'm seeing more and more interest struck up on social media about ethical and organic beauty brands. As I've said before, although I am not exclusively an organic/natural beauty blogger, but the vast majority of the beauty products I choose to review on my blog are organic, natural, and cruelty free.

I am wary of what I put on my skin and into my bloodstream, so when I am introduced to a brand that doesn't use harsh ingredients and nasty chemical, my ears prick up and they get my undivided attention. 

The latest organic beauty brand that I've been introduced to is called INIKA Cosmetics. I had briefly heard of INIKA before but I didn't know much about them until now. All of their products are certified organic, vegan, halal and are not tested on animals. The high performance products are made from botanical formulas using key ingredients and pure minerals such as aloe vera, primrose oil, green tea extract, macadamia nut oil and shea butter (all organic) to nourish your skin whilst you're wearing the make-up. 

I was recommended to try the following products and here's how I've got on:

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Outfit : Cats Rule!

cat sweater
cat sweater
cat sweater

Sweater Brat And Suzie*Leggings Primark

CATS RULE! HELL, YEAH THEY DO! ......Although, I must say, dogs are pretty darn awesome too!! I'm lounging around in a comfy sweater and tartan leggings today, whilst working through a very boring to-do list. My sweater is from Brat And Suzie, my go-to for when animal themed clothing! Unless they start doing miniature poodle illustrations, I'm always going to go for tshirts and sweaters with cats on them!

Brat And Suzie's S/S capsule collection consists of sweaters, tshirts, dresses, co-ords and raincoats for you cool festival go-ers. My eye went straight to the pineapple print dress, but as a self-proclaimed cat lady, how could I resist this?! The cat's wearing a trucker cap, for crying out loud!

On a recent (virtual) visit to the Brat And Suzie website, I noticed the homeware section. I am completely drawn to homeware more than ever so I had to check it out. I hope that this is a range that they will expand in. I remember watching the owners of Brat And Suzie on Dragon's Den and they were all super impressed with the business, but they invest because they couldn't see the brand expanding beyond animal themed t-shirts (I think that's what they said!). So to see new products within the range like raincoats, dresses, coffee mugs, stationery, phone and tablet covers is like pretty awesome (and two fingers up at the Dragons!). I can't wait to see more homeware products on there!

Be sure to check out all the cuteness at Brat And Suzie, you won't regret it!


Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Ted Baker Miami : Home Fragrance

ted baker home fragrance, ted baker candle,

Ted Baker Residence Home Fragrance Collection*

I get something new for the home once or twice a month, and this month starts off with a set from the Ted Baker Residence Home Collection. There are six fragrances inspired by Ted Baker's favourite cities, each available in the form of candle and a reed diffuser. I was kindly offered to pick something so I chose the Miami set. 

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Birchbox : February 2015

birchbox february 2015, birchbox uk february 2015

Birchbox : February 2015

Whilst I was writing up the blogpost for January's Birchbox, the postman delivered February's edition. When the parcel arrived, I noticed the difference in the way it looked straight away. Birchbox boxes are offering a slimline box which measures 3.5cm high and should fit through the letter box. It will still contain the same products and the same value as the classic style packaging. The only difference is that the slimbox uses less material (or wasted, even) to make the packaging, and the box looks fuller and more compact! Win-win! 

The February edition of Birchbox is a Valentine's Day special and I received contained 6 products; 5 beauty samples and 1 lifestyle bonus item which was a packet of breakfast oats (oats are not photographed in this blogpost). Here's a close look at each of the samples received in the latest Birchbox:

Monday, 2 February 2015

Outfit Post : Black And White Stripes

how to wear black and white stripes, how to wear monochrome, black and white stripy tunic
how to wear black and white stripes, how to wear monochrome, black and white stripy tunic
quirky jewellery, pineapple necklace, pineapple fashion trend
swatch watch, black watch

Tunic* Sheinside ▴ Fedora Miss Selfridge ▴ Watch Swatch ▴ Necklace* Ohh Deer

Woohoo! This is the first outfit post I have done this year and I have (sort of) forgotten how to ~pose~ for photos! Then I remembered that I don't actually pose; When I'm taking outfit photos, I either stand there like a plank of wood, or move about like I've got ants in my pants! There's no in-between!

Sheinside is a brand that I have seen do the rounds on blogs for a while now. Everytime I see the brand name, I always wonder how it is pronounced. Is it She-inside, or Shein-side? They are owned by the Shein Group Ltd so my brain tells me it's the latter, but I've heard YouTubers prounounce it SheInside, so that's what I'll go with! 

I spotted this black and white stripy tunic (which, confusingly, is listed on their website as a 'long sleeved tshirt') but as you can see, it isn't long sleeved, and it's not quite the traditional t-shirt. I chose to wear this as a tunic or a smock dress (petite girls fave type of dresses because it makes us look taller. And it saves the hassle of having to alter the hem!) but this is how it is styled on the model too, she's wearing it as a dress. The best thing about these types of websites is obviously how cheap the clothes are, and how much choice there is but the sizes can come up quite small. However, something they are really good at is stating the measurements of each and every garment, including the length - and I strongly recommend checking the measurements before you place an order with Sheinside!! None of my favourite UK fashion retailers (Topshop, Miss Selfridge, and ASOS) detail the measurements and that kind of annoys me. What's a short girl to do!

To add a bit of fun to the monochrome, I wore my pineapple necklace (only the best thing everrrr!). It's made of porcelain and the length of the chain is just right. Any longer and the porcelain pendant will end up knocking in to things. Don't want that bad boy to get damaged or worse, completely smashed! If you like quirky things, check out Ohh Deer, I guarantee you'll be on their website for hours!

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