Beauty, fashion and lifestyle blog

Monday, 30 December 2013

Review // The Body Shop 4-step Smokey Brown Palette


 I'm a massive fan of neutral shades so when i saw this palette i instantly fell in love as the shades are so glamorous and pretty. I really love the packaging of this palette as on the front it has a beautiful look created with this palette and on the back a easy step by step guide so it's made really easy to use. It also comes with two little eyeshadow brushes, a rounded eyeshadow brush and a angle brush which fit in the palette and are actually really lovely quality. 

The palette itself is quite small and compact with a beautiful gold body shop symbol on the top, it's very sturdy and clips shut without budging so makes it perfect for travelling. On the inside the lid is a huge mirror, so perfect for touch ups, there's a small tray to keep the two brushes and then the four stunning shades which are quite large considering it's quite a small palette and are all extremely pigmented and blend like a dream. 

The first shade is a beautiful shimmery light champagne colour which highlights and complements the other colours wonderfully. Used on the brow bone it ties the other colours in nicely whilst being quite subtle, it's also really nice to put on the inner corner to just really open up and brighten your eyes. Secondly is an amazingly rich coppery gold tone that has a lovely shimmer and looks really pretty when applied on the lid and then blended out. The third shade is a lovely light shimmery brown that compliments the copper tone again really nicely when applied on the outer corner and along the crease of the eye, it makes the smokey look without being to overly dramatic. And lastly is the only matte shade in this palette and is a very rich chocolate brown which i have used along the lash line and slightly winged out to create a subtle eyeliner but i think it would also look nice to intensify the outer corner if your after a more dramatic look. 

Overall this is a stunning palette to own and is amazing value and quality for money, if like me you adore neutral looks you need this palette in your collection. I would also say it's a great palette for those who's just starting out in eyeshadow as it has a step by step guide and two brushes you ideally need to create a nice smokey eye. If you would like to see how i created this look on myself you can watch my tutorial here
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Saturday, 28 December 2013

Make-up Look //Smokey Brown Eye's Using The Body Shops 4-Step Palette

This look i created using The Body Shop's 4-step smokey brown eye palette, as it's still very neutral just a lot more glamorous and special. I shall be doing a full review on the palette on a separate post so keep your eye's peeled for that but this is just one of the looks you can create with it. I think this is perfect for New Years eve for a party or if your going to a special meal, i actually wore this look for Christmas day. I hope you like this look and i shall try to do some more for New Years eve x


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Friday, 20 December 2013

Lifestyle // My Christmas Wish list

 1. Frank & Doll Lola Cruz boots £150  I say they're £150 but they are currently on sale for £75! I don't really own a lot of boots and i am quite fussy when it comes to them but oh dear lord these are heavenly! 

2. River Island New deco purse £17  I have never owned a nice what i would call proper purse, my current one is from New Look and is about four years old! I've never wanted to hand over a lot of money for a purse but now i have a couple of nice handbags i think it's time my tatty purse was upgraded.

3. Sigmax Essential kit 10 brush $146   I am dying to get my hands on the beautiful Sigma brushes and what better time then to add this beautiful brush set (seem as they're not exactly cheep) on to a wish list!

4. Milkshake Trio Christmas gift set £29.99  Since my salon changed from using macadamia oil products to milkshake i have been dying to get my hands on their products as  they made my hair feel fabulous. This little set seems like a perfect place to start and it includes the whipped cream conditioner that i fell in love with. 

5. Cloud 9 The waving wand £99.95  I'll be honest, never would i be able to afford £100 on a curling wand no matter how fabulous it looks and how bad i want it...so i think it would have to be a very special present. 

6. Satchels & Shoes Black tote bag £29.95  This bag is just so beautiful i had to add it to my Christmas wish list, i have been lusting after it for a while now and just think it would make a lovely addition to my other bags.

7. River Island Rose gold watch £28  I don't like watches and I'm not keen on gold....however i am lusting over this watch so bad! I know there are probably nicer more expensive gold watched out there but i am a woman of simple pleasures and i would love this under the tree haha. 

8. Nicki Minaj Pink Friday perfume £23 (prices vary)  With all my might i didn't want to nor expect myself to like this perfume but from first sniff i was in love! I am a gal who loves sweet smelling perfume and scents so this was right up my alley. I did have lots of different perfume but now they are all running a little low so i had to add this to my wish list.

9. Yankee candle Sugared apple £14.99  As sad as it may seem I've always wanted a large jar Yankee candle but just can't come to terms with handing over that much for a candle haha. I bought this scent as one of the little samplers and my god it smells heavenly so i would be quite happy to have this in the huge size.

10. Urban Decay Naked 3 palette £37  Of course this is on my wish list, what beauty blogger who isn't lucky enough to already own it doesn't have their fingers crossed to unwrap one on Christmas day haha. Just look as it in all it's magnificent beauty!

11. Nars Adult content blush palette £30   Believe it or not i don't own a single Nars product....i know it's shocking and seems like I'm the only beauty blogger who doesn't but I'm afraid it's true. Due to this i think this would be a brilliant first Nars product to get as i have heard a lot about their blushers, especially deep throat. 

12. Batman Arkham Origins £25  Yes i understand compared to everything else that is on this list it is completely out of place but i am indeed a Xbox geek and my Christmas wouldn't be complete without at least one game haha. 

What's on your Christmas wish list?
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Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Fashion // Christmas Party Dress Picks

With tartan being very much in fashion right now i think this red tartan dress is perfect for some Christmas drinks. I chose red tartan as it's more of a festive colour and think it would look great dressed up or even dressed down for maybe a spot of Christmas shopping.

It's well known that every gal should own a little black dress, hands up if like me you still need to get around to finding the right one haha. I love skater dresses as they look so simple but can look absolutely stunning on, the simple gold metal detailing just adds a little something special.

More on the casual Christmas occasion i think but teamed with a nice pair of leggings and some heels it would look stunning for a few cocktails with the gals on these cold Winter nights.

Everything about this dress just screams Christmas to me, the red is so festive and it's just classic and sexy and i don't think anymore really needs to be said, I love it.

I adore this dress, i certainly think it's my favourite out of all these picks. It's not necessarily Christmasy but i just think the detailing is so elegant and pretty it would look lovely at a Christmas meal and because it's not an obvious Christmas dress it won't stay at the back of your wardrobe till next year.

As beautiful as this dress is i don't think i could wear it comfortably at any time other than Christmas haha. A lot more younger styled i think it's playful and sexy for a Christmas night out on the razz.

This is another elegant dress that i think would look lovely at a Christmas meal or more formal occasion. The cut out sides adds a bit of sexiness without showing too much and the bead detailing makes it a little bit more special, the navy blue colour is stunning but also means it's easy to wear throughout the year as well. 

8. New Look gold sequin dress £25 
Who could have a Christmas dress list and not have one with sequins on haha, this is another dress that in my eyes screams Christmas. It's a lot more dressier than some of the picks but with it not showing too much flesh i think it's very versatile on what type of occasion you can wear it too. 
What dress is your favourite? 
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Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Health & Wellbeing // Living With IBS

Ok so this is a very hard and difficult post for me to write however it's one I've been planning on doing for a long time now and i feel like I'm now ready to share. I have mentioned in previous posts that i suffer with anxiety and it's something I've wanted to speak about more in depth and openly but to go into that i first have to talk about the huge factor and what has caused it to get so bad and that's the fact i suffer with what i can only describe as extreme IBS (Irritable Bowl Syndrome). 

Unfortunately for me i feel like IBS isn't really know about and when you first tell people it's something you have they just chuckle and think it means you just have to go to the loo....it's not. I first got IBS when i was 15 and it ruined my life at that point and caused me to miss so much school i was only allowed to attend two subjects. At that point in my life I didn't really know or understand what was going on or how to fix it but every time i had a meal i would be in such excruciating pain i would be in tears for up to half an hour to the point where my body would make me sick and then the pain would pass. The only thing i could do food wise was snack through out the day, this for some reason was fine for me to do. I weighed around seven stone and i was miserable, i had this until i was 17 and miraculously when i got with Phil (my partner) it just disappeared and i mean just vanished, I could stuff myself with Chinese, pizza, Indian literally any food i desired.  

That was until the birth of my son, for some reason going through labour brought it all back and brought it back with a vengeance. For the first year of Aidens life i couldn't seem to eat or really do anything and it meant i missed out on time with him too, i went to the doctors tried all the tablets they could offer but nothing worked. Strangely my IBS likes to work in a different way to most diets that are tailored for it as it seems like the healthier the meal the more ill it makes me, i have literally eaten chicken nuggets and chips for two years now (for some reason this is safe for me to eat). Even simple things like travelling has been affected by this as i can't be on a bus or in a car for long journeys and I'm afraid to eat unless I'm at home. It's safe to say that IBS has a very tight grip on my life and i stayed inside a lot because of it, this in turn has caused me to have ridiculous anxiety in even simple social situations. 

Early this year i was in a situation which caused me to have what i would call a mild panic attack and i decided enough was enough and to try and take a hold of my life again. Although there is no cure for IBS i will not let it take over completely and am slowly trying new foods to widen my "safe meals". From doing this instead of just being able to eat chicken i have found i can also eat venison and fish, I'm not really a fishy person so that's down to taste more than anything haha and it's surprising on just how much having a variety of meat can open up a few meal choices. I've also swapped mash and roasted potatoes to new boiled potatoes which is a nice change from having chips all the time haha. I've dared to eat at a restaurant with the Mr and instead of being shy i have asked the waiter to change something on the meal to suite me, for example i order the hunters chicken but ask for no cheese and no pepper (i can't tolerate pepper at all) and for the barbecue sauce to be separate, that way i can try it and if i think it's going to be risky i can just leave it. However i think the biggest change I've made that has really helped me is drinking peppermint and nettle tea, since drinking this i have found my stomach to be a lot more settled and happier. 

I don't think IBS is widely spoke about as a lot of it's sufferers are to embarrassed by it and that's me included. It's a horrible thing to have that can easily spiral out of control and take a hold of your life but if like me and you feel like there's nothing that can help, some small changes can make you feel slightly "normal" again. It's not nice to suffer with this at any age but when your young and meant be able to do whatever you want it especially sucks. I may do more posts on this if i find something that really helps or if it's something you would be interested in then please don't be shy to ask, i will be doing a more in depth post about my anxiety too. 

Do you or someone you know suffer with IBS? 
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Monday, 2 December 2013

Review & Lifestyle // Bedruthan Steps Hotel & Spa


The hotel itself is huge and throughout has a wonderful aroma and sense of calm no matter where you are. Whilst there you have full access to all the hotels facilities which consist of the spa & pool, out door pool, tennis court, gym, cocktail bar and snooker room, not to mention a few others. It's also a family friendly hotel which has play rooms for the little ones and offers baby monitoring from the evening, so if you wish to put your little one down and go enjoy a meal in the restaurant you can. They also offer a range of different classes from jewellery making to sea fishing and with it being just a short walk from the beach they also offer surfing lessons, so it's fair to say there is something to keep you busy if you don't want to relax in the spa. 
Bedruthen offers quite a few packages and different room choices (all of which you can find and book here) which is brilliant as there is something to accommodate everyone. I personally chose the mini spa break in a double sea view room which cost £225, this sounds a lot but in this package you get a £30 food voucher each, a treatment each, a bottle of Prosecco and full access to all the hotel facilities for your stay and the day after you check out. The room we stayed in was beautiful and the double bed looked onto the wall to wall window which looked onto the magical sea view, there was also an en-suite bathroom and TV with DVD player.
  
The spa is just a short walk from the rooms and on your way down it's full of beautiful art work and big windows so your surrounded by the peaceful view. The spa is broke down to two rooms, the swimming pool and the spa which consist of the jacuzzi and sauna rooms which you can come and go between as you please. For our treatments we had the Bedruthen back, neck and shoulder treatment and had it in one of their double rooms so we could be together, you don't have to be a couple to chose this and i think it's a really nice touch to be in the same room. The treatment lasts for half an hour and personally i really enjoy it, it relieves any tension i have and is just so relaxing i can't put into words how good i felt when i come out. 
There are two restaurants to chose from the wild cafe and the herring, both of which use locally sourced ingredients to put on the menu. The food is well priced and with the £30 voucher it covered are evening meal even with having a desert, the only thing we had to pay for was our alcholic drinks as the voucher doesn't cover this. The voucher can be used for all food throughout your stay not just your evening meal, which all but covered what we had whilst we was there.
 
From a romantic trip away to spend some quality time with your loved one or having some girly pamper time with your friends, this place offers something for everyone and if you don't want to stay over night you can always book in as just a day guest. In all honesty my photo's do not do this stunning place justice so here is the two minute tour video so you can see it in all it's beauty. I understand for some this is to far to travel too but if your in the south west i certainly recommend this beautiful hotel.

Have you ever been to a spa?

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Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Review // Neal &Wolf Ritual Shampoo & Conditioner

Since having my ombre hair i tend to try out more brands of hair care products than i have done in the past, so when i come across the Neal & Wolf samples in my #southwestbloggersmeet goodie bag i was excited to give it a try. This is more a my first thoughts kind of review as i have only tried this for the one wash as they where samples but i wanted to share it all the same. 
 
The sample that i got was from their ritual daily range, which as you can tell is a shampoo and conditioner designed for frequent use. Although i personally don't wash my hair everyday i do like to alternate between hair care that's designed for blonde hair and an every day type and it's this type i change up a lot. 

Neal & Wolf Ritual daily cleansing shampoo £11.50 //  "Ritual is a shampoo designed to cleanse the hair, leaving it fresh, full of shine and ready for styling. An infusion of silk and milk proteins combine to boost vital moisture and reduce flyaway hair. Liquid Shea extract delivers brilliant shine. The result? Luxurious, easy-to-manage, radiant locks."

Now i have to point out as i do have such long thick hair samples usually contain less product than i like to use, especially seem as i always like to shampoo my hair twice. Even though this did contain less than i normally like to use i did manage to clean my hair with it and it did lather up rather well considering. I was a little doubtful on how clean my hair was gonna be due to this but i got to say it did a great job and my hair felt nice and clean.

Neal & Wolf Ritual daily conditioner  £12.50 // "Ritual is a weightless conditioner that instantly detangles, leaving hair wonderfully smooth and ready for styling. Silk protein complex delivers vital moisture while Shea butter extract creates a brilliant shine. Added sunscreens provide protection from environmental damage. The result? Luxurious, easy-to-manage, radiant locks."

Being honest when i saw that this conditioner was meant to instantly detangle my hair i didn't have much hope for it as my hair gets ridiculously tangled as there's just so much of it and when wet it's a complete nightmare. I was wrong! I was in shock how easily i could run my hands through my hair with this in, in my eyes it was a blinking miracle. Again i do usually use more product than i had and i was a little worried that my hair wouldn't be that nice when dry, but again my thoughts where wrong and my hair felt super soft. 

 I really should of had higher hopes for this product as in my eyes it delivered in everything it said in just one use! My hair felt lovely and clean and it did seem to dry a lot quicker as well. I found i had no fly away bits of hair and it genuinely left my hair feeling and looking in a wonderful salon like finish. I also love how luxurious they smelt and it even left my hair smelling of it which made me feel pampered and special. After using these samples i am defiantly eyeing up the full size products so i can have luxurious hair all the time and i'm also very intrigued in the other products they have to offer. 

Have you tried any Neal & Wolf products? 
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Friday, 22 November 2013

Review // Elemis Skin Glow Exfoliating Face Wash

Elemis Skin glow exfoliating face wash £12 100ml
 If I'm being honest skincare is something I've been a little slack on with moving, and on top of having added stress etc. my skin has been a bit rubbish and unloved, so when i saw this in the #southwestbloggersmeet goodie bag i was really excited to give it a try. Knowing that Elemis is such an established, well known and trusted brand i had quite high hopes for this face wash and was looking forward to seeing the results it claimed to do.
" With a deep pore cleansing action, this exfoliating facial wash contains cherry powder and jojoba beads to gently polish and help refine skin texture. Enriched with mandarin and aniseed to soften and condition, leaving skin brightened and more radiant."

 With it containing fruity ingredients you can imagine the first thing you notice is the wonderful light and fruity scent,which reminds me of summer and i want to eat it haha. It's very creamy in consistency and packed full of tiny jojoba beads, because of this i find a little goes a long way. I've used this a couple of times to help get rid of my dry patches and bring balance to my skin and it's doing an amazing job. The jojoba beads remove all dead skin cells and any make-up/dirt that has been left behind from cleaning, which in turn leaves my skin baby soft and more radiant. I certainly think that my skin will be noticeably brighter with this being incorporated into my weekly skincare regime. This exfoliator is very gentle on my skin, where I've found some can be quite harsh and although we want to remove the dead skin and dirt we don't want to scrub away at the nice fresh skin underneath. 
This product is from their teens to twenties range and personally i think they've got the packaging spot on, bold and bright it's certainly eye catching to this age range. I also really like the fact they have this line, being in my twenties i think most skin care is either aimed at teens or for the over 40's and there isn't really much focused or designed for the in between. I must say on first impressions i am very impressed with this face wash and it has certainly made me want to explore Elemis more as a brand. I would happily pay £12 for this as in my eyes skin care is extremely important to perfect make-up, you can have the best foundation in the world but if you don't take care of this skin underneath it's not going to look that good.
 
Have you tried anything from Elemis? 
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Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Life // The #Southwestbloggersmeet

 As you may of already seen from other excited bloggers last Saturday was the #Southwestbloggersmeet up! I was so excited when i got the invite earlier this year and although i suffer with rather bad anxiety and travel sickness i thought screw it and jumped at the chance seem as it wasn't that far from me. I originally planned for the Mr to take me up but four hours is a long time for a man who doesn't like shopping to waste so i decided to go up by train, which I'm glad of as the views of the country and sea side was beautiful. 

Once there my shyness kicked in big time and annoyingly because of it i didn't mingle as much as i wanted to or should have, although with that said all the ladies i spoke to where so nice and i even met three bloggers from where i live which really shocked me. I'm sorry to those who i didn't speak to or get much time to speak to i wasn't being rude haha i just get stupidly shy and anxious. 

At the event there was Exeter's LUSH gals who where really lovely and where even doing arm massages with the snow fairy massage bars, so of course i had one and it was lovely haha. My favourite product they had their though was the winter garden Christmas gift set as it had a rose jam shower gel, ro's argan body conditioner, helping hands cream and a bar of sultana of soap. There was also teeth whitening there by Pearlys which again i tried and my teeth felt amazing, can not wait to try out their other products and finally get a gleaming white smile. After a few cocktails and a lot of chatting about beauty, blogs and everything in between the raffle was held and a lot of lovely gals won some amazing prizes. We then got our goodie bags and i can not express how amazing they where,bright pink and full of wonderful product's that i can't wait to try and share. 

Even though i regret not mingling more I'm very proud of myself for going, as silly as that may sound, those who suffer from anxiety will understand how travelling and entering a room full of people you don't know can be rather scary. Now that I've broke the ice i can't wait for the next one and i shall certainly make an effort to talk to a lot more people. I also want to say a massive thank you to Liza who blogs over at Glambeautys and Kerry from Livedwithlove who organised this wonderful meet up and made it well worth going, you both did a fantastic job. 

Have you been to a blog meet up before? 
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Monday, 18 November 2013

LUSH Christmas Giveaway!

I haven't done a giveaway in a little while now and with the festive season upon us I'm using it as a good excuse to do one haha. I've been thinking for a while about what i want to giveaway as i didn't want to do anything similar to what I've done before or what's about at the moment so i finally decided on a LUSH voucher. There's nothing i like more than a nice Lush bath in the winter to get me all warm and relaxed, i also love to have one when I'm getting ready to go out for a special occasion. My father always gets me a Lush voucher for Christmas and i love going in and being able to spoil myself with lots of Lush goodies, it always makes me feel special and i wanted to pass that feeling on to someone else. 

I know some of you may think i don't have a bath so there's no point in me entering but do not fear as Lush have lots of lovely products for everyone (well i think so anyway) from the obvious well known bath bombs to face masks, make-up, skin care, shower gels and soaps to perfume!

 So with that said one of you lucky followers will win a £15 (fifteen pound) Lush gift voucher to spend on whatever makes you happy. This giveaway is open to the UK, I'm sorry to all you over seas readers i shall do an international giveaway soon. Also this is to treat one of my followers and i am getting this out of my own money so no cheating as i do check anyway! As always I'm going to do this giveaway through rafflecopter so it's fair and i don't have to personally choose, if your under 16 please get your parents permission first. The giveaway ends on the 15th and i will give the winner 48hrs to respond to my email otherwise i shall choose someone else, good luck to all who enter! X
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Review // MUA Luxe Power Brow


Having groomed brows is always something i strive towards seem as my own don't have the best shape and have areas where the hair is a little sparse, due to this i have made it my mission to try different products and techniques to get them perfect. However because of this it normally means i spend a while just on my brows and yes i am one of these ladies who won't go out the house without them done no matter how simple the rest of my make-up is or if it's just to walk the dog, so it can be very frustrating. 

I'm a sucker for nice packaging so the simple yet elegant box pleases me a lot, i also like how they have put instructions including pictures on how best to use it along the side of the box. To be completely honest i wasn't expecting to like/love this product as much as i do! I chose to get shade mid-brown as i don't like my brows to be to dark and the colour is in my eyes an amazing match and the highlighter shade compliments it wonderfully. The shade end is easy to use and has the right balance of softness so it applies great with a light hand and doesn't leave too much product on the brow, this may seem a little confusing but if you've used a pencil that is too hard or soft before you'll know the frustration. Both ends twist to get the product out like most of these kind of wands do which is fine but don't forget to wind it back down again! I had to re purchase this after having it for only a few days as i forgot to wind the shader side down put the lid back on and then when i took the lid back off all the product was smushed and stuck to the inside of the lid and i couldn't fix it.

Using this i can now do my brows in 5 minutes instead of the god knows how long it used to take, which especially makes my partner a million times happier as it cuts down the time it takes to do my make-up haha. I simply brush my brows in place use the shader end to shape my brows and lightly fill in sparse areas and then use the highlight end on my brow bone. The staying power is also impressive as my brows look freshly done all day which i love. I truly can't get over how easy, quick and long wearing this product is, it pretty much ticks all my groomed brow boxes and it's all in one easy to travel with wand! 

Have you tried anything from MUA's new luxe range yet?
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