Friday, 14 November 2014

My Everyday Makeup Essentials

We all have certain products we reach for on a daily basis, the ones we couldn't be without and the ones we will repurchase on a permanent basis, I thought you might like to see mine! 

 I use these products pretty much every day for my “work face” as they are usually fool proof and quick and easy to use (trust me this is needed for me in the morning!). I need to use products that allow me to get a nice natural look without taking hours. I tend to go for quite a natural look when I’m at work as I want to look professional and put together. 
I usually have about fifteen minutes to get my makeup looking nice as I will take the extra fifteen minutes in bed over getting ready, especially in the winter when I literally have to roll myself out of bed in the morning.

The face essentials:

Bourjois Happy Light Matte Serum Primer – This peach tinted primer is my first step after moisturising, it helps to keep my skin looking matte and non-shiny especially around my T-zone. I find it helps my makeup sit better on my skin and I feel a lot fresher and brighter after applying this.
Benefit Big Easy BB Cream – As time really is not on my side most mornings I always reach for this BB cream, it provides a good level of coverage, whilst being easy to apply and blend on the quick. It’s a lovely thick BB cream so does give a pretty decent amount of coverage, It’s the best BB cream I’ve come across out of all the ones I’ve tried.
Soap and Glory Kick Ass Concealer – I love the constancy of this concealer pen, I apply with a brush to minimise the spread of any bacteria and apply to blemishes. It gives a great level of coverage and blends in well with my BB cream.

The Eye Essentials:

Soap and Glory Archery – I have recently become a fan of bold eyebrows, they really frame the face and I think it gives a good polished look. I have to be careful not to overdo them (I don’t want to look like I have two caterpillars having a snooze over my eyes!) I find this duel ended pen is amazing, the brush tip end means I can precisely fill in any gaps and the crayon gives an overall fuller look.
Bare Minerals Lash Domination Mascara – I’m actually just using this one up as I’m not hugely impressed with it but it does give a lovely natural look to my lashes. See my previous review here.
Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara – I’m on my fourth of this mascara, it is completely unsmudgeable – perfect for a long day at work. It makes applying mascara to my bottom lashes a breeze! 
Soap and Glory Supercat Liner – I like a good felt tip liner and this one by soap and glory is super black, it makes me feel instantly more put together and the felt tip means that I can apply this in about 30 seconds with minimal mistakes!

Lip Essentials:

Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm – My current lip balm obsession (review to come soon!) this is the perfect winter time conditioning balm. I apply this to soften out any dry patches.
Benefit Lolli Balm – I don’t always apply this, it usually depends on how much time I have before I need to leave. I love this balm, it adds a lovely light lilac tint to the lips & looks nice and natural for work.

The Easy Essentials:

Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Blusher – I’m having a bit of a Soap and Glory moment, everything I’ve tried from them I’ve been so impressed with! This stick pan cream blusher is so quick to apply, simply swipe and blend and I’m good to go! The beautiful coral colour is lovely too!
Benefit Fake Up – This conditioning under eye concealer helps my tired eyes look brighter and the conditioning balm is meant to help keep wrinkles at bay!

So there you go, a guide to my everyday essentials, as you can see I love anything that is essentially time saving as I like to have a full face of makeup for work but I need it to be quick and to look as natural as possible. If you fancy seeing reviews on any of these products just let me know in the comments below! 

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Fireworks, Football & Five Guys!

 Last weekend my Boyfriend took me away to Manchester because he wanted me to share in his favourite thing: Football, Mainly Manchester United.

We kicked the weekend off with a fireworks display in my village before we drove up. My little village may be in the middle of nowhere but it has one of the best displays around!

On the Saturday morning we got up, sleepy headed but excited at 6:15 and made the 2 and a half hour drive up to Manchester. We got there and realised it’s not called the rainy city for nothing – It was chucking it down! We got out of the rain and went to explore the Trafford Centre.

I’ve never been to Manchester so the Trafford Centre was a new experience for me! It’s probably the best shopping centre I’ve ever been to, with every shop you could possibly need all under one roof. I loved the Christmas Decorations they had up. 

We didn’t have that much time to explore as kick off was at three so we went to the ultimate burger joint – Five Guys.

Look at the cheese on that bad boy!

Five Guys is a bit of an institution in America and it has worked its way across the pond, I’ve had five guys once before and I have been having cheeseburger shaped dreams ever since so I was one very happy girl! I went for a little bacon cheeseburger with extra cheese and bbq sauce. I like my Burgers bacony and cheesy with little else so this suited me fine! I love the drinks machines where you can pick pretty much any drink you can imagine!

I have to say whilst it was amazing, the one I had at Westfield in London was a little better! But now I’ve had my five Guys Fix and this will satisfy my craving for a while!

We walked past the Lego store and me being the child I am, couldn't resist having a photo with Harry & Hagrid!

Finally it was off to Old Trafford for the part my boyfriend was most excited about, Manchester United Vs Crystal Palace! We did a spot of shopping before we went in – I am now the proud owner of a very cosy Man U scarf. Once my purse felt a little lighter we decided to go find our seats. We were in the Sir Alex Ferguson stand, really high up and in the corner. This meant we had a great view of the pitch but the players did look a little like ants!

I really enjoyed the game, the weather got better and I surprised myself by getting really into it and cheered extra loud when Mata scored! Was amazing to get to see a win for my first game and I’m looking forward to going again!

We did plan on going out for dinner after the match but after such a long day we just chilled out with Saturday night TV as we were both so tired!

I had an amazing time in Manchester, next time I hope we can explore the city a bit more and I plan on making a shopping assault on the Trafford Centre soon! 

Monday, 10 November 2014

Canterbury Tales

I used to live in Kent, by the sea in a little cottage in a tiny town. I was so happy there and then due to some pretty rubbish circumstances we had to up sticks and move.

Although it was awful at the time, I am so happy where I live now but I miss the seaside and my lovely friend who I left behind. We haven’t seen each other in about three years (we are both so busy and can never seem to get a date in the diary!) when we finally agreed on a date and pinned it down I hopped on the train to Kent over Halloween weekend and we had a wonderful weekend of catching up, food & more food!

It was amazing to see her again and it made me realise how strong our friendship is by the fact that even after not seeing each other in about three years we were able to hop right back in as if I’d only seen her yesterday. She is one of my dearest friends and I really miss being able to see her every day.

Here are a few pictures from my trip, I hope you enjoy! X 

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser

I know I’m pretty late on the band wagon with this product but to be honest this was one product I thought would be a total and utter gimmick.
All I can say is… what a total and utter fool I am! I literally cannot be without this little wonder product and my skin has met its life partner!

I am a bit lazy when it comes to moisturising my skin, I know it’s a step I should always do but I can never be bothered when I got out of the bath/shower & most of the times I just forget. I decided that I really needed to start moisturising more after we came back from Greece and my skin got all sore and dry & flaky because I hadn’t kept the moisture levels up on my post-holiday skin. I was determined to get into a routine and then I discovered this product when browsing in boots.

I immediately thought in shower? How’s that going to work? What a silly idea! But being that it was near the end of the month (and I was running low on pennies) and it was on offer I thought I’d give it a go and if it was rubbish it wouldn’t matter. So, how does it work? You basically apply your normal body wash in the shower, rinse off and then apply a good layer of the Nivea in shower moisturiser. Once you have applied you simply wash off as you would any other body product.

The first thing I noticed was the scent. I picked up the indulging cocoa scent. It smells really luxurious when you are applying it. Once I had applied and then rinsed off I could still notice the scent lingering on my skin which was lovely. I thought I felt a bit of a film like texture on my skin initially but that soon disappeared once I’d towel dried myself. I have to say once I had rinsed it off I didn’t notice the difference, it was when I was dried and about to start getting dressed again I noticed how incredibly soft my skin felt and how that lovely, lovely smell was still on my skin. My dry skin on my legs instantly looked better and felt softer. It claims to have 24+ hours of care, I am happy to say my skin was in excellent condition the next day and has been so much better since I started using this. The best part is that you can get dressed as soon as you are towel dried – none of this waiting around nonsense for it to sink in!

I can’t believe how good this product is for such a bargain price, it has become an essential part of my routine and one that was easy to get into a regular habit of using as it’s so quick and easy! One thing you do have to be careful of is that it can make the floor of the shower quite slippery so make sure it’s properly rinsed away or it can get a bit like and ice rink!

Priced at £3.55 & Available here.

Friday, 7 November 2014

You Beauty Discovery Box (November)

 I love beauty boxes, getting a surprise package of beauty goodies every month is my idea of heaven! I’ve tried other boxes, such as Birchbox which I did enjoy but the thing I disliked and the reason I ended up cancelling was the fact you could never choose what you were to receive and I didn’t seem to have the best luck ever, I always seemed to get something I’d never use or wasn’t right for me.
When I saw the You Beauty Discovery Box online I thought it looked perfect for me – basically it lets you pick two products from a monthly selection menu and you get 2-3 extra pre-selected products chosen for you. I really like this idea as it gives you the chance to get two products you really want and you get the added bonus of trying out something new. 
The selection menu goes live at 7am on the 1st of each month, so like a true beauty fanatic I found myself logged into my account at 7am last Saturday and this is was I chose:

Roques O’neil Himalayan Detox Salts 100g – I am a huge bath lover, and I like nothing more than a nice relaxing soak. These pretty pink salts are packed full of minerals and essential oils such as Geranium, Rosewood, Patchouli and Lavender to really help relieve the body of any stress and tension it may be holding onto and to also aid with sleep. I plan on using these once a week in my Sunday pamper bath, this is a really generous sample size so I should get a few good uses out of this before I decide if I love it enough to purchase the full size!
Magnifibres Brush-On False Lashes – This is a full sized product which I was super pleased with! It looks like the most interesting beauty product ever! As you may have previously read I am always on the hunt for the ultimate mascara and this product may just help make my all-time favourite even better! The idea is that you apply one coat of your normal mascara and whilst still wet apply the maginfibres. The little fibres will cling to the lashes and when you apply your second coat of mascara it’s supposed to add extra oomph and wow factor! I am so excited to try this out and I will be posting a separate review of this product soon.
Monthly Extras – Merumaya Melting Cleansing Balm and Iconic Youth Serum & Aduna Baobab Superfruit Powder. I am looking forward to trying out the cleansing balm but I think I might give the serum to my mum as it might be a bit mature for my skin at the moment. The Baobab superfruit powder will be great to mix with a yoghurt in the morning, it appeals to the healthy side of me as it contains a high amount of vitamin C and fibre, I have no idea what it is going to taste like so I will report back!
The You beauty discovery box is priced at only £6.95 per month and that includes postage! Considering the contents of this box is worth around £25 this is a complete bargain in my mind! I can’t wait for Next months box already!!

You can check it out here.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Guilt Free Snacking

A bit of a different post from me today, Since January this year I have been on a health kick – I’ve managed to lose quite a bit of weight and feel so much happier and healthier.

I am a complete and utter chocaholic, I cannot get enough of the sweet stuff and a year ago that was mostly the problem. I couldn’t go a day without eating a massive amount of chocolate, I thought it was making me feel happier and it was my treat so why not? It took me a little while to realise comfort foods were not making me feel good in fact they were making me sad, anxious and just completely not like me. I had been feeling down and unhappy with the way I looked for about a year, I had gotten bigger almost without noticing it and it took a long time for me to realise what was making me so deeply unhappy.

I had to re-educate myself on eating and exercise, having studied exercise science at uni I should have known better to be honest! I started doing exercise regularly and cut down on the rubbish! I know how I am when it comes to food and I like to graze, I like to have a few extra nibbles with my lunch or a quick snack to get me through the afternoon. I’ve just had to teach myself that a little snack is not a 100g bar of galaxy chocolate (true story unfortunately!) but to make better and healthier choices.

You can’t change the habit of a lifetime, I still love a good bar or chocolate but I try to restrict myself to one bar on a Saturday or a Sunday but inevitably I’m only human and I do slip up sometimes. I thought you might like to see some of the alternative snacks I’ve really begun to enjoy that satisfy my need for something to munch on but won’t compromise my healthy eating.

Metcalfe's Sweet and Salty – I love popcorn, but I don’t like how unhealthy it can be. When I first discovered sweet and salty popcorn  it was literally like a light bulb going off in my head, I couldn’t believe how tasty and filling it was and a serving is only 115 calories! I was instantly sold and I think I eat this pretty much every day with my lunch instead of a bag of crisps. It helps keep me feeling full and the combination of sweet and salt is genius!

Chedds Nibbles – I cannot stand milk, I just can’t bring myself to drink a glass of the stuff so I try and get a little bit of my calcium from cheese. I really like the kids snack packs you can get, which is little bits of cheddar this averages at about 67kcal per serving, cheese can be bad for you if you eat too much of it so I usually try to stick to these small portions.

Fruit! Simple, cheap and available almost everywhere, I used to have a couple of choccie digestives at 11am but now if I’m hungry I have an apple or an orange instead. Gives me that feeling of eating something sweet and is nutritionally much better for me.

Pop chips – Sometimes I really really crave a bag of crisps, this is where I reach for the popchips they are healthy crisps in the fact that they are air popped not fried or baked so they have this really unique texture but the best bit is they are so full of flavour, I am a big fan of the barbeque flavour. Only 100kcals (ish) per bag, healthy crisps that feel naughty even though they’re not! My kind of food!

Sparkling water – ok so technically not a snack but it’s really helping getting me off the coke zero. I know how bad it is for me and I’m really trying to stop drinking it but when you’re pretty much teetotal and you go out on an evening what do you drink?! Having a glass of sparkling water with my lunch also makes me feel like I’ve had a fizzy drink and I find I crave a glass of coke zero less.
These are my five favourite healthy snacks, as you can see it’s pretty much all about the mind games with me. I have to trick my brain into thinking it’s being naughty, this way I feel satisfied and my body likes me a lot more for it.

I am not a nutritionist nor do I claim to be, this is just what I have found works for me. Every person is different and what works for one may not another so just bear that in mind.

I hope you enjoyed this post, I’m off to eat some more popcorn! x

Monday, 3 November 2014

Pay Day Wish List #1

Pay Day Wish List #1

Scarf     Jacket   Bracelet   Slippers   Sweater  Hat   Makeup Bag

I love it when pay day rolls around, I thought I'd start a little mini series on my blog where I share the things I'm lusting after and considering spending my hard earned pennies on every month.

Tartan Scarf: I have seen tartan scarves popping up everywhere recently and have fallen in love with the trend. I really like this one from New Look as it's reversible so you can mix it up and match it to any outfit. Price: £14.99

Jacket: I loved the design of this jacket, I am a big fan of lace and I thought the sleeves were unusual. This one is from House of Fraser and is from their plus size section. Price: £59.50

Bracelet: I think this is one for my Christmas list! I have been wishing after this bracelet since the beginning of the year. But I can't bring myself to spend that much on a bracelet, not matter how pretty it is. I think it would be the perfect accessory to wear with a plain black dress to my works Christmas party though! Price: £110

Slippers: If you read my last post, you'll know how much I love my sheepskin slippers, I love slippers in general! I especially need them in the winter as my bedroom gets so cold, I love the cute teddy design and they are a great price! £7.99

Sweater: Ok, so I admit it - I am secretly a five year old disguised as a 24 year old! I can't even begin to explain how cute this sweater is and how much I need it in my life... I just know the instant my boyfriend sees it he will shake his head and laugh at me, but!!! Price £19.99

Hat: Again, if you've read previous blog posts you will have seen how much I love owls and I can't think of a better idea than to wear this cutie when the weather gets colder! I like the pattern of this and it looks like it's well made so should last a few winters to come! Price £18.00

Zoella Beauty Makeup Bag: I have been a long time reader/watcher of Zoe's blog and youtube channel and I love the design of this makeup bag from her collection. It's a really good size to hold my makeup and I think it's a really good price! £8.00

So those are the items I'm most wishing after this month, some I think I will see if Father Christmas can bring me! But I am going out to get that unicorn sweater as soon as possible (in fact it's in my online shopping bag as we speak!) 

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Cozy Essentials

As winter draws nearer and nearer there is nothing I love more than getting snuggled up inside with a mug of tea and a good book. I thought I'd share with you some of the things that help make the cold so much better! 

Gingerbread Man PJ's: I picked these up on my latest trip to Tesco. I loved the design, there's just something that makes me think of Christmas whenever I see Gingerbread men. They have long sleeves so they are perfect for keeping me warm when it gets stupidly clod in my bedroom. 
£10 from Tesco. (can't find a link online!)

Bird Print Duvet Cover: I love floral print and birds and this duvet cover has both which makes me very happy. The best part? With prices starting from £10.00 it's affordable too. It's certainly brightened up my room! Available from Asda here.

Sheepskin Moccasins: My feet feel like they are wrapped up in clouds when I'm wearing these. Thye keep my feet just the right temperature and they don't get to hot and bothered (except when I sat in front of the fire the other night). I got mine from a local agricultural show but there are similar ones here.

Panda PJ Case: This is the cutest home for my new pjs and it makes me smile when I see this little guy on my bed! I picked him up from Primark for £3.00.

I feel like I'm all set up now for winter, what are your essentials for the cold months? 

Friday, 31 October 2014

Skin Care Stars: Elemis Balancing Lavender Toner

I’ve just recently gotten into a good skincare routine. I’m still in the process of perfecting whats right for my skin (isn’t every girl?) I thought I might start a little mini-series on my blog where I pick an item from my skincare routine and do a little review for you!

here's a secret for you: I love nothing more than lazing about in my PJ’s and having a lovely relaxing bath and I make sure I do this as often as humanly possible! 
This toner is a recent addition to my pamper routine, I picked it up from a spa trip I recently went on with my friend after they used this on me during the facial.

It’s specifically designed for Combination skin and I do find that it is good in helping control the oily parts of my skin especially around the t-zone area whilst not overly drying out my cheeks.
It comes in a clear bottle with an atomizer dispenser, you can either spray onto a cotton pad and then sweep over the face or you can directly spray on the skin to use as a facial spray to refresh the skin.

I love herbal, relaxing scents and I adore the smell of Lavender so I knew this would be right up my street. This toner is designed to rebalance the PH level in your skin without stripping the skin of it’s own natural oils. I hate it when you apply a product and it makes the skin feel tight and uncomfortable. I am happy to report that I don’t get any of this with this toner, it leaves my skin feeling refreshed and soft.

It contains extracts of Lavender, Quillaja Wood and Sweet Betty flower. To me I can only notice the Lavender and I apply about 5 sprays to a cotton pad and use after cleansing my skin with my Garnier Micellar Water. It rids my skin of the final traces of makeup that may still be clinging on for dear life and makes me feel relaxed and calm.

If you are not a fan of Lavender then you will not like this toner as it is really strong smelling. If you, like me love all things Lavender then I’d really recommend it. It leaves my skin feeling clean, soft and lifted without making it feel tight and uncomfortable. 

The only downside for me is the price. It’s RRP is £22.00, unfortunately for my purse, it was love at first spritz & I couldn’t imagine not having this little beauty in my skincare arsenal!

Available from Feel Unique here.

Do you use a toner? What’s your current favourite? 

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Bare Minerals Lash Domination Mascara

Just like my holy grail lip balm I am always on the look out for the ultimate mascara. For me, the best mascara I’ve ever used is YSL’s Shocking Faux Clis but being a wee bit fickle I tend to flit between different brands to see if any can top my favourite.

I picked up this mascara recently after reading good things online. Priced at £17.00 it is one of the cheaper high end mascaras. It promised to give me larger than life eyelashes with a 10-in-one volumizing formula. So did it live up to it’s claims? Read on to find out…

I initially didn’t like the packaging, it’s in a silver plastic tube with a spiral top lid. I find it shows up grubby finger marks really easy and I think it looks a little cheap for the £17.00 price tag. Maybe I’m a make-up snob but I feel that if I’m shelling out £17 for a high end mascara it should at least look like it!

The wand itself is where it gets interesting, it’s a helix shaped plastic bristled wand. It’s designed to allow the wand to distributed the product from all angles and then create a more even coat to the lashes. I don’t have a preference when it comes to bristle vs plastic wands but I found the wand does what It’s meant to. It applied evenly with no horrible clumps and it managed to get nearly all my lashes.

In terms of wear it lasted well however I did notice some smudging towards the end of the day, something that my beloved YSL does not do. It did keep my lashes in a lovely condition, and they didn’t look spidery or clumpy. The volume this mascara gave was nice, it just wasn’t as amazing as I wanted it to be. It left my lashes looking naturally volumised, it didn’t do much in terms of length but this isn’t something it claims to do.  Getting it off at the end of the day was easy, but it’s not very splash proof!  When I got caught out in the rain I looked like I’d been doing a panda impression! (oops).

Left Eye: Natural Eyelashes, Right Eye: With the Mascara

I will use this mascara up as it gives a lovely naturally volumised look which is perfect for when I am at work, but it doesn’t offer the wow factor needed when you’ve got a night out or special occasion. For me the search continues, I think I’m gunna have to go back to my old faithful soon!

 If you fancy trying out this mascara it is available to purchase here