Tuesday, 31 December 2013

New Year and New Thoughts

I hope you all have a fantastic time celebrating New Year.
I am relieved this year is over to be completely honest, as it has been a pretty tough time. A Lot has happened in the last couple of years which has completely thrown me into a different direction. I am going to sound very cliche when I write this, but having going through some difficult times, it has brought me much closer to the people in my life that I know love me dearly. If it wasn't for my Dad and Sister I have no idea how I would function. I am fortunate to have them both in my life. The past two years especially has shown me that you never know what is around the corner, and people who you think will always be a constant in your life might prove you wrong.
With that being said, I have experienced some great things this year.  Its not all doom and gloom, I have so much to be grateful for, and I feel that this year I have found something very special and I feel truly happy at long last. I feel quite content at this moment in time and it is a strange yet wonderful feeling.
i know everyone has 'life lessons' and say this sort of thing at the end of the year, every year, but for me I have been a very unhappy person for a very long time.  I hope to change this. I hope this is another new chapter in my life which holds lots of happiness.
I hope 2014 will be a great year for you!
Take care, I will see you in 2014! 
What are your last thoughts on your 2013?

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Maybelline Baby Lips - Worth The Hype?

Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm in Peach Kiss

The Baby Lips hit the UK just a few Months ago and everyone seemed to go absolutely crazy for them! I had managed to get my hands on one before they were released in the UK as I won a competition. I featured this in a favourite post back in February but wanted to wait until they were released here in the UK before I wrote about it. I forgot to write about it, then wasn't sure if there really needed to be another blog post about the ever so hyped tinted lip balm, but I thought hey why not?

The lip balm I own is in Peach Kiss, which as you can see is a very muted peach which gives just the tinest amount of sheer tint. It is effectively just a lip balm with a small sheen to it, I would not say it is highly pigmented in colour, but for me, a great product to pop into your hand bag. I didn't feel it necessary to include swatch photos of the lip product on the lips as it gives only the tiniest hint of colour which would not be noticable on a photograph.

I have read many blog posts about these lip balms and I have to say I was surprised a lot of people weren't bowled over by it. I think they are a great product as it leaves my lips feeling moisturised, but it is just a lip balm and is a little overrated for what i is - but hey- it does the job! I do think they are over-hyped but I do really like the product. I wouldn't go out and buy the entire collection as I really don't need another lip balm (!) but it is a great staple if you are on the go and need just a little something on your lips, or perhaps if you aren't too kean on a bright lip or lip stick, this is a subtle touch of colour.
Have you tried any of the Maybelline Baby Lips?

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas To You All!
I hope you all have a fantastic time celebrating the festivities. Take care!
Happy Holidays!

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara in Black

Black, RRP £21, available at Boots

I was really excited when I purchased this treatment mascara as Elizabeth Arden is a well - loved brand, and I knew it would be a good quality product. The product boasts to optimize the look of lashes, making application smoother and easier, the mascara lasting longer, and lashes to feel softer, healthier looking and less likely for breakage. All of these points sound fantastic, don't you think? For me, the treatment mascara lives up to my expectations. My lahses do not feel clumpy or tacky after applying this, nor do they look sparse and stuck together. It feels like the are opened (if that makes sense?) a lot more evenly. They look natural, yet thicker and slightly longer, making them look healthy and looking wide awake.

The product doesn't give that annoying 'just-after-application-dots-above-your-lids' thing that a lot of mascaras tend to do to me. I use this treatment mascara before applying my normal every day mascara (usually Soap and Glory Thick and Fast or Benefit They're Real) and it seems to make my lashes feel and look better, and last longer through-out the day too. 
 I would purchase this product again as it worked well for me.
Have you tried a treatment mascara like this before? What are your thoughts?

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Clothes Show Live 2013

Clothes Show Live Birmingham NEC 2013*

I am sure you are aware if you live in the UK, that Clothes Show Live takes place at the NEC arena in Birmingham every year in December, showcasing many fashion outlets, beauty products, recruitment centres, as well as off-course the fashion show itself. I have been previously when I was around 15, around seven years ago (wow I feel old!) and I remember really enjoying the day, I was thrilled to find I had won tickets to attend this year. 

I was super excited, I made sure I woke extra early to ensure I arrived at the NEC bang on 9AM. On arrival, I was impressed to see it wasn't ridiculously busy at that time and so I could have a good look around with ease. As you can see from the photograph I took below, it was pretty quiet when we arrived, it didn't stay that way for long though! 

There were many fashion stalls representing themselves at the show, I found there was many indie clothing brands which sold a lot of on trend pieces. I am not really a trend follower, I was more interested in the beauty side of things and that is what I was excited about. 
With brands such as Barry M, Rimmel, Models Own, Bare Minerals, Miss Patisserie, Clarins, Fake Bake,  Ciate,  Helen E Cosmetics, Jelly Pong Pong, So...? With Attitude, With Love Jess, Elemis, Bomb Cosmetics, w7, Laurens Way, Leighton Denny, Mary Kay, along with other indie beauty stalls, I was over-whelmed and brought a few things. 
A few of the reality TV stars from Made In Chelsea and The Only Way Is Essex were at the event over the weekend, I caught a glimpse of Gemma Collins from TOWIE representing her plus size clothing brand, she is even more pretty in real life.
With plenty of stalls, including; womens wear, mens wear, candles, jewellery, teeth whitening, confectionary, beauty, hair, accessories, vintage, plus size, perfume, lingerie and footwear, there was plenty to see and purchase!
The same as every year, a few Magazine stands were offering their goody bags for £3, including Cosmopolitan and Company and Elle Magazine, which is good value for money seeing as the magazines tend to cost around £3 alone anyway.
A lot of the make up brands had fantastic deals on goody bags and buying so many any times for a certain price, making fantastic discounts. Some highlights were; Rimmel's £5 goodie bag including 4 products, Barry M's goody bag for £10, 10 items for £10 at w7 or 3 for £10 for higher priced items, Buy 3 Models Own Polishes for £10 and a free goody bag, Buy two goodies bags from Jelly Pong Pong for £10 which included four items, and many more.   
Echo falls, Diet Coke and Starbucks were dotted around the floor giving away samples which kept us refreshed!
A disappointing point of the event, was that there were about 6 cash machines inside the hall, and none of them worked. There were two outside the hall which off course was super busy, I would recommend withdrawing money before arriving at the building if you were to go in future, as not many of the stalls accept card payment.  
There were lots of social media onsite with photobooths, Capital Radio FM were there along with a camera crew so there was a lot going on. There was also a 'Take Me Out Live' event where you could pay to watch, or auditions for you to take part in the show!
As I arrived early I didn't have chance to catch all of the fashion shows, but I am told they were fantastic. 
The halls were easily located as there were many sign posts to direct you to the hall, staff were very friendly and helpful, and overall I was impressed with the day and enjoyed myself. It was off-course began to get very, very busy at around 11 AM, so I would suggest if you are given quite a early afternoon fashion show time, go as early as you can to avoid queues and missing out on some fantastic deals. 

I picked up quite a lot of beauty bits, I haven't had chance to sit down and photograph them all properly on my camera, but once I do, I will test out and review the products and pop them up in a different blog post! I took a couple of rubbish quality photos on my phone though which I have included below. 

Have you been to the Clothes Show Live before? 

Thursday, 19 December 2013

My Eyebrow Routine

How I Do My Eyebrows

Anyone that knows me well enough knows how obsessive I cn get with my eye brows. I like them to look nicely shaped and filled in. My eyebrows are something that I take pride in. Some may mock, but I just really like them to look neat and tidy, as naturally they are sparse and messy.

Once a fortnight (or whenever I feel they need doing) I wax my eyebrows using waxing strips especially designed for eyebrows, which are from Superdrug. The packs are really inexpensive and easy to use. They are readily shaped in short strips so they fit nicely underneath the brow.
 Between waxes, I pluck any stray hairs if I need to, but I try to keep this to a minimum as I can get quite obsessive and end up with none (!). I use slanted tweezers which I have had for years, I have no idea where they are from.

To style and fill in my brows I use a few different products and tools. I use an eyebrow brush to brush the hair the way I want it to sit (which I forgot to include in the photograph below, but we all know what they look like!). Next, I use w7's Style Eyes, which is effectively just a eyelash wand with a wet gel which helps to shape the brow. I use this before any other product so the hairs stay in place and it is easier to use.
I then use a thin, angled eyebrow brush from MUA Proffesional to apply the products. I use MUA Pro - Brow shadow (the darkest shade) firstly to fill my brows in, and then go over with a Real Techniques angled eye brush with Mac's Brun Eyeshadow. To finish, I use the wax included in the MUA Pro brow set to set my eyebrows. Thats it.

I know some people find it strange I use a fair few products on 'just eyebrows' - but it takes me less than five minutes to do. I always try to follow my eye brows natural shape, and I try my best not to go over the top with them, but I do really like doing them myself. I used to get them waxed at a Salon every two Months, but I just find it more convenient to do it at home now. My eyebrows are something I do every day - I can happily go for weeks without wearing any other make up, aslong as my brows are tidy and filled in.

What make - up is essential for you everyday?

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Bumble and Bumble Thickening Hairspray

                   Bumble and Bumble Thickening Hairspray

 50ml, RRP £7.50, available at Boots
I think everyone on the blogging scene went crazy when this Bumble and Bumble Thickening Hairspray was included free in a magazine not so many Months back now. Off course, me loving a bargain jumped on that bandwaggon with the rest of them and picked it up. Bumble and Bumble are a brand that I had never tried before, and to be honest nothing in their range ever really stood out for me. I love hair care products, but I also find it difficult parting with such a lot of cash for products I can get elsewhere which are still really great quality and do the job for me, for a noticeably smaller price. I wanted to put this to the test to see if it is worth the hype and the price tag.

When applying this it is advised to use on damp hair. I am no expert on anything to do with hair but I did find it a little out of the ordinary for me to be applying hairspray to my hair when it is still partly wet. Bumble and Bumble state that this is so it protects your hair from the heat and to give the right hold while still taming the frizz and giving direction to the hair.
I found this to not do anything at all to my hair. I didn't feel that once blow dryed and styled as normal after application, that my hair had any extra hold. It seemed slightly less frizzy but that was all I noticed that made a difference. I didn't feel my hair had any more volume after blow drying. I personally wouldn't purchase this product at full price as it didn't live up to my expectations, perhaps this is because of my hair type and style, but it didn't do great wonders for me. I have since read a few more reviews online and have found that a handful of people say it is a little more work if you have thick dark hair, maybe I'm not using it correctly? 
In conclusion I feel this hairspray is quite mediocre and I probably wouldn't buy it again.
Have you tried this hairspray? How did you get on with it? 

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Review: Yankee Candle in Warm Spice

                                             Yankee Candle Warm Spice

It is no word of a lie when I say I really love candles. I know every blogger and their mum seem to yarp on about the candle God of all Gods Yankee, but they really are worth all of the glory as they are the best candles I have used. That aside, I thought I would write up a few reviews on some of my favourite scents, as I haven't really done this much on my blog before.

Warm Spice is a scent which is pretty self - explantory... think creamy, home baking, cinnamon, nuts and brown sugar. The scent is very crisp and sweet, without it being overally sweet or sickly. The scent does not smell synthetic or fake, it smells like real home baking at Christmas time. The long - lasting smell is quite strong but not overwhelming.
This burns really nicely and evenly, which is good value for money in my opinion. I find when buying cheaper candles they don't burn as equal as Yankee Candles do.
The scent fills an entire room, and the burn time is really good for about 25+ hours I would say on average. I really like the tumblers, but I have no preferance between Yankees tumblers or jars.

Are you a fan of Candles?
What is your favourite?

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Neal and Wolf Elevate Volumising Lotion

Neal and Wolf Elevate
Volumising Lotion*

I hate blow drying my hair. It has to be one of the most boring and most time- consuming parts of my day. I know I shouldn't blow dry my hair too much, as my hair shouldn't be put under so much heat, but 9 times out of 10 I don't have enough time in the day to let it dry naturally. I try to use styling products which can begin to work during the blow drying process, so that it saves me time afterwards from styling even more.

This is where this little beauty comes in; a Volumising Lotion for all hair types by Neal & Wolf. I hadn't heard a lot about this product previous to me owning it, but I am so glad I have it in my life now as it is a life saver.
It is great for creating big, volumous hair. I use it with a big round brush while blow drying to create more depth and volume. You only need to apply the smallest amount all over damp hair before blow drying. I have had this product since January now and it is still going strong, it lasts a long time. I featured it in a favourites post back in February having really enjoyed using it, I still recommend now 10 Months on. This will definitely be a repurchase from me, I would recommend this to anyone that hais particularly flat hair as that is what I have and this product does wonders for me.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Review: Yankee Candle Simply Home Merry Berry

Yankee Candle
Simply Home
Merry Berry

I am doing a little different post to normal today. I have a huge love for burning candles, and I have noticed a lot of you alll do too. I know a lot of people love to burn the original Yankee Candles, but I use purchase  candles from their Simply Home range a lot and I really like their burning time and scents, so thought I would share with you some of my thoughts.

Perfect for the Festive Season upon us, I bring you 'Merry Berry'. As its title suggests, it smells strongly of fruity berries.The scent is very strong, it fills a room with quite strong berry and wintery scent. It is a lovely, fresh, festive scent for this time of year.  It burns realy well, with a good 40+ hours burn time. The scent lasts well in a room. When they are burning for a long time the jar does get dirty, but that is the same with most candles anyway.

These retail at £9 and are readily available in store at ASDA.

Have you tried any Simply Home candles by Yankee? 

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Mac Pro LongWear Lipcreme in Goes and Goes

MAC Pro Longwear Lipcreme in Goes and Goes

Like most bloggers, I like to try out different products by different brands when experimenting with shades I may not be brave enough to wear all the time. I adore the look of purple lipstick, but I wasn't sure if it would suit me, if it would look too bright against my pale skin, or what shade of purple would look right. A couple of Months ago I headed to an outlet shoping centre and found a little shelf of MAC products in the CCO.

This lipstick I picked out is a Pro Longwear Lipcreme in Goes and Goes. As far as I am aware, this is no longer available and is not in their current lipstick line. I know this product is not readily available like others in the current line, but you may be able to pick it up at a CCO, online or even a blog sale or charity shop, you never know.

I have to be honest and say that this does feel a little sticky once applied onto the lips. It also feels drying after a while on the lips, nothing a good lip balm can't sort out, but it is a little dissapointing seeing as it is a MAC product, a relatively high end make up brand which I expected a little more quality from, especially from a Pro Longwear Lipcreme, which are notibly more expensive than their normal lipsticks. The pigmentation and colour pay off is fantastic though. It is quite a blue toned purple, which does look quite pink based upon first application, but looks much brighter once built up and applied more. It lasts a good four hours on the lips before wearing off into a pink stain, I think it has a decent staying power, but I wouldn't agree that it is long lasting as the lipstick collection name would suggest. Beautiful colour nonetheless!

What are your thoughts on a purple lip?

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Christmas Giveaway! NO 7 Nail Set

Christmas Giveaway!

As a little 'thank you' for you supporting me and my blog, I thought I would hold a little Christmas Giveaway. I really appreciate all the support my readers give me, especially in the past few Months where I haven't been able to blog as frequently as I would like to. 

Up for grabs is this beautiful Nail Glitter Collection Set by No 7, now I don't know about you but glittery nail polishes really put me in a festive mood at Christmas time, and this set includes a gold, silver and pink glitter top coat which are perfect for any upcoming parties you may have. The set also includes two other pretty polishes which are in Beanie and Temptress.

To enter, you MUST follow my blog via GFC and leave your email address so I can contact you if you win. You can also follow me on bloglovin, twitter and tweet about the Giveaway to gain extra entries! Use the rafflecopter below - it is super easy! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good Luck and Happy 1st of December!