Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Hotter Shoes.

Belle Boots by Hotter Shoes Review
The 'Belle' Boots.

 Me and shoes have a complicated relationship. The words 'shoe shopping' usually send a cold chill down my spine. My mother can attest to the hundreds of hours we spent, when I was a child, desperately shoving my feet into any shoes that would fit. Sadly, as an adult, this only got worse and my shoe options have been limited, to say the least. This often leaves me having to wear something I hate and often pay a fortune for.

 There is a serious lack of brands out there that pay attention to the quality and comfort of their shoes. So, when one does come on my radar, I get pretty excited. Hotter is one of them.

Hotter Shoes Vanity Boots
The 'Vanity Boot'.
Recently, I was lucky enough to meet with the lovely folks at Hotter and take a look around their brand new Brighton location. I was also give the chance to take some of their shoes out for a test drive (well...walk?) and have been so happy with them! I have been looking for a staple pair of high black boots for a really long time now but had given up being able to find ones that would suit my specific requirements (Comfort, room for orthotics etc.)

 The shoes I chose were the 'Belle Boots' and at first I thought there was no way they would work with my awful feet but they fit beautifully and somehow manage to accommodate my orthotics really well. The zip goes right from the very top to the very bottom meaning they are super easy to get on. They also have quite a bit of stretch for different leg sizes, as well as a Standard and Wide Leg option, which I think is brilliant!

 They have also just been so comfortable. Usually a 'comfortable' shoe denotes a kind of frumpy, awkward style, so finding something that is actually pretty and comfortable makes my life so much easier! Hotter are known for their focus on quality and comfort but recently their attention to style and design has been amazing. I really noticed how well crafted each shoe was and they are just producing such great styles. I honestly cannot wait to try more!

The Hotter team are also just lovely, down to earth and it was great meeting people who were clearly passionate about what they do. Since 2010 Hotter have opened a new store every month (which is incredible) so if you haven't seen them near you, chances are, you will soon.

Have you tried Hotter shoes before?

Let me know!!


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Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Wintery Favourites.

Eau Thermal Avene Clearance Expert, The First Bad Man by Miranda July, Pixi Glow Tonic, Ultrablast by Lush, Divers by Joanna Newsom
Clockwise: Eau Thermal Avene Clearance Expert, The First Bad Man by Miranda July, Pixi Glow Tonic, Ultrablast by Lush, Divers by Joanna Newsom.

I didn't manage a favourites last month as I was a bit underwhelmed with a lot of new things I had tried and simultaneously overwhelmed with uni stuff. I decided that instead of forcing myself to find things I would hang back and combine October and November to make a Wintery Favourites of stuff I have actually really loved.

In Lush, a few weeks back, I was cornered by a member of staff who rather gave me the hard sell on their new 'Teeth' range. Sadly, as I am an awkward person, I would rather buy something I didn't intend to than say "Thanks but no thanks". Thus, I am now the owner of Ultrablast! BUT I actually really like it! It is a tooth powder, designed to take the place of toothpaste and does a brilliant job. I use it about once a week for a really deep clean. Interestingly, it's Wasabi flavoured. Although a little weird actually quite nice and very subtle. For the slightly less adventurous their are also other, more usual, flavours like Tooth Fairy and I would really recommend the range as they're great or even just for curiosities sake!

Pixi Glow Tonic Blogger Review
Pixi Glow Tonic.

My skincare hasn't really changed too much recently apart from these two great products. I won't write too much about Pixi Glow Tonic as it has been reviewed more times than their are stars, but I will say that it really does live up to the hype. If you have congested or problem skin I would really recommend it. It is also now sold in Marks and Spencer making it infinitely more easy to get hold of! The other product I have been using is from Eau Thermal Avene and it's their Cleanance Expert for acne prone skin. I have been using it as a moisturiser and it has really helped balance my skin a bit more and keep it less oily but still hydrated and soft.

This month I wrote a "What I have been Reading Lately" post and The First Bad Man by Miranda July was featured. I really enjoyed this book, it is funny and insightful but also a little dark. I wouldn't say it's a book for the fainthearted but if you are looking for something (very) interesting, unusual and a bit of a challenge, this could be the book for you.

Divers by Joanna Newsom came out about a month ago and it instantly became the soundtrack for my life. I have it on repeat since it came out and have yet to get even slightly bored with it. As I am still not bored of Have One On Me, her last album released in 2010, I doubt I ever will. Her music is slightly divisive and I won't even attempt to sum it up here, I will just say go and decide for yourself and check out the beautiful video for Divers, the titular track, here.

Have you got any Winter Favourites?

Let me know!


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Thursday, 26 November 2015

Juliet at Home Sweet Pea & Mint Candle.

Juliet at Home Sweet Pea & Mint Candle.
Juliet at Home Sweet Pea & Mint Candle.
I am a candle person. I just think they bring so much warmth into the house and really help make it a home. And yes, I know what you are thinking "A blogger that loves candles, how novel..." I know, I fit the stereotype but I wouldn't be without them. I burn them all year round. In the winter though, I literally have one on the go constantly, come morning or evening! I am burning it as I write this and I feel so cozy and warm, whilst the wind batters my windows and the heavens open!

I was sent this beautiful candle by the folks at Juliet at Home in the scent Sweet Pea & Mint. It has a really fresh, minty scent and from the second I opened it even, it has left every inch of the room feeling clean and refreshed. Although a fresher scent is bit more unusual in winter, over heavier and spiced scents, it has been really nice having something a little uplifting and lighter in contrast. 

Juliet at Home Sweet Pea & Mint Candle.
Juliet at Home Sweet Pea & Mint Candle.

During the colder months, getting that fresh, clean air scent can be hard to achieve without opening my windows and freezing to death! As that is not a preferable choice, having a fresher scented candle is a good balance. I also love the combination if the sweet pea and mint. It's not too sweet and leaves the room with a subtle, but invigorating scent. It is very much welcomed at this gloomy time of year.

It also burns really evenly and seems to have a good, strong, thick wick (try saying that 10 times fast) adding lot of light and warmth. The packaging is also really cute and has been brightening up my shelf perfectly. Juliet at Home also do an amazing range of unusual scents, in their 'Kitchen Larder' range. Everything from seasonal Mince Pie to Cucumber Sandwich to Sweet Violet and Angelica. I love interesting, unexpected scents and I think the they would make a great present or stocking filler with a scent for everyone!

Are you a candle fanatic too? Juliet at Home are also offering a discount code BLACKFRIDAY for 10% starting at midnight tonight! 

Are you a candle fanatic too? 

Let me know!


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Wednesday, 25 November 2015

What I've Been Reading Lately.

What I am Reading: The First Bad Man by Miranda July, On the Road by Jack Kerouac, Balthasar & Blimunda by Jose Saramago, Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon.

The First Bad Man by Miranda July is definitely what you could consider a strange book. Without giving too much away the book is fixed in the mind of the protagonist, Cheryl Glickman, whose mind is somewhat obsessive. Cheryl is very likeable but in a very odd way. I found myself identifying with many parts of her personality, whilst also often finding myself a bit repulsed with the things she would think. I think July does a great job at capturing that dual mentality that many of us has

On the Road by Jack Kerouac is one of those books that I everyone told me I just had to read it too. I am not one to read something just because everyone raves about it, in fact it actively puts me off. Stubbornness be damned, one day when I saw it looking lonely on the bookshelf one day I decided to give it a whirl and have not regretted it. If you are not too familiar with the book it is basically one, long homage to America in the 50's narrating the route of the crazy, road trip dream. It's endless, descriptive passages of the american landscape somehow never get old and Kerouac has an uncanny ability to route you right in the narrative. If you are looking for something to give you itchy feet, this is it.

Baltasar and Blimunda by Jose Saramago. I have actually only read a very small amount of Balthasar and Blimunda but it is my next in line after finishing On the Road. I am a huge fan of Jose Saramago and think he is an amazing writer, incomparable to anyone elses work I have ever written. Leaning much to the Avent Garde, Surrealist literature side of things, his work is very detailed and perceptive but they're are still so many layers. I would really recommend reading at least one of his books in you lifetime.

Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon. I absolutely loved this book and I don't quite know why. It was confusing, the plot was slow and I sometimes had no idea what I was reading. It was fantastic. Set in drug fuelled 1970's L.A it follows the central character Larry "Doc" Sportello through his P.I work and hunt for answers. Which turns out is pretty hard (and even harder to narrate) when you are really high. Although about 90% confusion, it just has these little moments of clarity amongst all the haze and Pynchon manages to sum up people and feelings in such astute, insightful ways. They are like a pin light that guides you through the entire novel.

Have you read anything new lately?

Let me know! 

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Thursday, 19 November 2015

BFI LOVE Season.

BFI LOVE a season of film, T.V and special events 2015
BFI Love: A season of films, t.v and special events.
This winter the British Film Institute is hosting a series exploring all things LOVE based at the BFI Southbank. The program includes a wide array of film, T.V and special events over November and December and is sure to warm our hearts a little, for the colder months ahead. For those not located near London, The BFI have also joined forces with Vue Cinemas to offer LOVE Tuesdays. A series of special one-off screenings, around the country, of selected films.

"Films to fall in love with. Films to break your heart."

The season is split into three areas, creating interesting ways in which to view the films: "The Power of Love presents epic tales that show the struggle to hold on to tenderness, and each other; Fools For Love offers romantic comedies filled with warmth, wit, charm and poignancy; and Fatal Attractions exposes the follies of desire, the violence of passion, and the intensity of obsession."

 Not only is the program brilliant but A few of my personal highlights include Clueless, When Harry Met Sally, Amelie, William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and Cleopatra. There will even include an appearance by one of my personal favourites Estee Lalonde aka Essie Button, who will be introducing screenings of The Notebook and The Fault in our Stars! I highly suggest you watch the trailer below and it has ALL OF THE FEELS. Just make sure you have tissue to hand!



More info on the season and booking info can be found here on the BFI's website.


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Saturday, 24 October 2015

A/W Lush Haul!

This is an autumn and winter Lush Haul, talking about some new and old favourites.
Left to Right: Cranberry Festive Face Mask, Magic Wand Bubble Bar, Butterbean Bath Bomb, Full of Grace Serum Bar, Shoot for the Stars Bath Bomb.
After starting back at Uni a few weeks ago I have been a little on edge and after having a particularly stressful week, I decided to pop in Lush. Sometimes this is a bit dangerous for me, spending wise, but I feel like I made some good purchases and kept myself in check this time! I just  grabbed a few things to make me feel a bit more relaxed and a couple of things I have had my eye on for a while, skincare wise! The new A/W/Christmas is also out, so how could I resist?

My skin has been appalling recently, going from oily to dry at the drop of a hat. So I decided to try one of the new face masks. I decided to go for the Cranberry Festive Face Mask as it smelt great (which is often a bit of a problem with Lush face masks) and it has done an amazing job at calming my skin down! It says it aims to nourish skin, whilst also mattifying and I really agree it did. Its feels like its just re-set my skin and taken away all the build up that just didn't feel like it was shifting but was still gentle and moisturising. I so badly wish this wasn't just a festive release!!

Lush Haul: Magic Wand Bubble Bar, Cranberry Face Mask, Shoot for the Stars Bath Bomb, Butterbear Bath Melt, Full of Grace Facial Serum.
I also got the Full of Grace Serum Bar to try out, which is something that has been on my list for a while now! It says it aims to calm the skin whilst also controlling greasiness. I warm it between my hands, until a little melts and then massage into my skin. It's really moisturising, making my skin feel really soft and soothed but it is sometimes easy to go a little overboard! Even on those days though, it's still gentle enough not to cause breakouts and how calm and nourished my skin feels makes up for it! I would defiantly give it a go at some point if you have sensitive skin

I also picked up the Butterbear Bath Bomb, which I have been wanting to try out for so long! I was meant to have used it by now, but I've hyped it up in my head so much, that I keep wanting to save it! I have it sat next to me as I write and it smells amazing. I have been doing exactly the same with the Magic Wand Bubble Bar, I've read so many rave reviews about them both and cannot wait to finally try them as I feel like everyone else has!

The last product I chose was the Shoot for the Stars Bath Bomb. It's a really lovely, nighttime product and it smells really soothing and relaxing. It comes out in the bath as varying shades of blues, pinks and purples to simulate the sky and then a little yellow spot which makes it look like a shooting star. I am always so impressed when lush have these little concepts behind their bath bombs and I usually don't end up getting in the bath until its cold because I want to watch the entire thing!

Have you tried any of the Lush A/W/Christmas releases?

Let me know!

















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Friday, 9 October 2015

Worst Blogging Habits!

Worst Blogging Habits!
I have been blogging for a little over a year and a half now. During that time I have made many strides and learnt so much! I have, though, also picked up a few bad habits that creep up on me time and time again. These weak spots are constantly something I am trying to overcome but I am still very stuck in my ways. For now I will just have to keep trying...

Finishing Posts - I currently have 36 posts in my drafts folder, all very much unfinished! For some reason I can never finish a post. Often this is because I can't get the right photo or image as I really struggle in that area but sometimes it is just me being scattered! I find focusing on one thing for an extended period of time very difficult. I long for the day when my concentration it at a point when I can start and finish a post in one sitting! Sadly I don't think it will be coming any time soon so for now I will have to put up with an overflowing 'drafts' folder.

Consistency - I dont always turn out content as consistantly as much as I would like. Sometimes its due to health problems and legit reasons but often I overthink and overcomplicate things way to much. Like I mentioned before I am very scattered but I am also very self critical. If I dont think I have done a good (enough) job on something I won't publish it. I also have a lot of personal posts that are pretty much waiting to go but will chicken out of publishing them!

Completely Ignoring Platforms - I am so behind on my Pinterest account, I usually forget I have one >.<  I am so bad at ignoring social platforms/accounts because I always focus on one at a time! Twitter is my far my most favoured but at the moment I am trying to harder to use Instagram more and doing a bit better. I find juggling lots of things at once pretty hard! I don't exactly lead the most exciting life either so I often worry about boring people!

Being Scared - I often have a lot of posts or things I really would like to write about but I am way to scared of being judged! I find putting myself out there online really rewarding and it has helped me over come a lot and be a bit more comfortable with myself. I do though, still struggle with focusing too much on what people might think. I am really bad at comparing myself to others and judging myself a little too harshly. I am definitely my own worst enemy! I am currently trying really hard to cut myself some more slack and it is really helping me just go for things and accomplish a lot more.

 Do you have any bad habits, blogging or otherwise you are working on?

Let me know!


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Thursday, 1 October 2015

Soap and Glory One Heck of a Blot Instant Perfecting Power Primer.

This is a review of the brand new Soap and Glory release the Soap and Glory One Heck of a Blot Instant Perfecting Power Primer
Soap and Glory One Heck of a Blot Instant Perfecting Power Primer.
  My skin is very extreme combination, made up of both very dry and very oily patches. Whilst I very much need a primer, finding the right one can be tricky, especially within the past few months when my skin has become a bit of a nightmare! I have been having a lot of trouble with my makeup both disappearing but also clinging to the drier areas and haven't really found anything to counteract this, meaning my skin has not been looking it's best.

 Until about a week ago, in Boots, when I was looking at the Soap and Glory stand and noticed the One Heck of a Blot Instant Perfecting Power Primer. It is not a product I had ever noticed before and I am pretty sure is a new release for A/W 2015. As a huge fan of Soap and Glory products, I knew I had to give it a go! I have never been disappointed with one of their products and this little gem is no different! It has really been helping create a better base for my foundation/concealer and I am very grateful!

 Since using it, I have definitely noticed my makeup staying in place longer. A few people have even commented that my skin has been looking good, which never happens! I have been noticing my makeup staying a lot longer and neither fading on those oilier areas, nor clinging to drier ones. It seems to be really getting the balance just right between not being too drying and keeping excess oils at bay.

 It has a slightly creamier, thicker texture than a lot of primers I have used before, which I really like. Because its creamier, it is very smooth but doesn't feel too silicone heavy. It applies a bit like a moisturiser actually, sinking in a little but still leaving a smooth layer on my skin. The only downside with this product is that because its not as siliconey (not a word I know), I did find that I needed a little more than I have with other primers as it didn't spread quite as far. I am a little concerned about how quickly I will run out but I do think this is hugely outweighed by how lovely it is to use, feels o the skin and how well it works.



Let me know!
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Saturday, 26 September 2015

Bourjois Air Mat Foundation.

This is a review of the Brand New Bourjois Air Mat Foundation. Bourjois's newest release.
Bourjois Air Mat Foundation in 01 Rose Ivory.
Whilst in superdrug the other day I spotted a brand new Bourjois foundation release and have been very excited to try it! Introducing the Bourjois Air Mat foundation! Bourjois are renowned for producing great foundations and they really conquer the market for amazing dewy, light, glowy bases. So when I noticed that this was a matte foundation I was really excited to find out what Bourjois would do and I have to say I have not been disappointed!

I love that Bourjois seem to have still kept their whole lighter, brighter foundation vibe but translated it to a matte foundation. Unlike a lot of matte foundations it is not at all heavy and feels really natural on the skin. It also looks natural and its creamy, light texture means that it blends really well, creating a light but strong base. It has a very full coverage, covers redness and acne really well and I have found I use little to no concealer whilst wearing it.

It's staying power is great as it's designed to absorb excess sebum and oils, whilst still allowing the skin to breath. Throughout the day my skin tends to become quite oily, which means that my foundation tends to fade and come away very quickly. As it controls excess oils so well, it means I only needed a small touch up in the late afternoon (mostly due to my skin type I think) meaning it is great for long days!

I also really like the packaging of the Air Mat foundation. It is simple, in a classic bourjois kind of way and just looks really fresh. Being a tube means that there is less wastage and it is always easy to dispense and control the amount.

Have you tried the Bourjois Air Mat foundation?

Let me know!
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Monday, 21 September 2015

Focusing on Myself, Not Others.

Learning how to focus on myself and not compare myself to others.
As a very anxious person, I often find it difficult to keep myself together. During periods of more intense anxiety, it is very easy to let things slip through my fingers and before I know it, I have become completely stagnant. Only doing to the absolute bare minimum to keep going, which usually involves 5 seasons of a T.V in a couple of days (don't pretend you don't know... >.<)

Although for a lot of people, downtime leads to introspection, being anxious means that introspection is often the last thing I want to do. This means that I tend to spend a lot of time studying things and people around me. Sometimes though it can take a turn for the worst and become very extreme. Suddenly, becauase I dont want to focus on myself, I start focusing way to much on others. What they are doing, how well they are doing it, how much better they are than me, why can they do and I can't... etc, etc. I have always struggled with focusing too much on others and I often catch myself doing things or behaving in a certain way, only because its what I think others would want, rather than being myself. It's basically a very complex distraction technique but it can actually end up feeling my anxiety and then around I go in a cycle.

I find it really hard to keep centred and concentrate on myself. Comparing myself to others often just leads to jealousy, spitefulness, anger. It's very easy to slip into that mindset and very hard to pull myself up on and actually make a change. Noticing that I am doing it is a great start but isn't usually enough to shake me out of it. I find if I don't address the cause, the stagnation that has brought me there, then I just end up hating myself for those kind of thought patterns. Usually I find motivating myself in just anyway can lift my mood. It can be it work, house stuff, reconnecting with old friends just something to make a change and channel that energy into something positive. It doesn't have to be a big change but I think just proving to myself that I am in control of your actions, even a little, can really change my outlook. Even just tidying my bedroom  has been known to kick start pulling me out of major episodes! I'm not saying it will cure me or anything but as they say, life is in the details and sometimes the smallest things can make the biggest change.

Just a little thought!



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Wednesday, 16 September 2015

La Roche Posay - Rosaliac Range.

Left to Right: La Roche Posay Rosaliac UV Riche Moisturiser, Rosaliac CC Creme & Rosaliac AR Intense.
I am someone who suffers from a lot of redness and it has always had a bit of an impact on my self esteem. Unless I am wearing a lot of makeup, the redness always seems to poke its way through to say hello and I often feel like I will never escape it! I never really put it down to much, other than bad genes, until a few months ago when I heard about Rosacea. Rosacea is a chronic skin condition, that causes facial redness and dilated blood vessels on the face. It can also cause acne, characterised by red bumps and papules rather than black/whiteheads. As it is chronic it is more about managing Rosacea than curing it but there are many treatments out there and a lot more awareness. If you would like to find out more there is an excellent video by Caroline Hirons and Dr Sam Bunting here.

I recently heard about the La Roche Posay range formulated specifically for Rosacea/redness in an article by Sally Hughes in the Guardian. In the article she mentioned a lot of people had found the range very helpful. That day I went out to Boots, bought some of the products to see if they would help and I really wish I had taken a 'before' picture to show you guys as the difference is pretty big!

 The product I feel has really made the most difference is the AR Intense Serum. I usually wash my face in the shower and naturally when I step out it is bright red, staying this way a good while. When I apply the AR Intense serum within about 10 seconds it has totally calmed the redness. I have also noticed that the more I use it the more my skin stays calm generally and it has really taken the redness down a good few shades! I would highly recommend the AR Intense Serum, I have not seen my face this calm and just not red, in years!

I have also been using the Rosaliac UV Riche Moisturiser, which has a green tint to counter-act redness. I am quite fussy about moisturisers and a lot don't suit my skin causing breakouts etc (probably due to Rosacea) but this has been really great. My skin has been feeling much calmer and more balanced and although it is a little on the heavier side (there is a lighter version) and it occasionally feels a little heavy I have not had any breakouts or irritation at all and my makeup is applying a lot smoother.

The Rosaliac CC Creme has also been fantastic. It just gives a very natural, dewy finish and is really light on the skin. It has helped to keep redness at bay throughout the day and is great for a really quick base with some staying power. The combination of the serum and the moisturiser has also meant that I have needed no concealer whatsoever but my skin still looks the best it has in years!


Have you tried the La Roche Posay Rosaliac Range?

Let me know!

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Sunday, 13 September 2015

Birchbox Birthday Edition September 2015.

This is a picture of the BirchBox Birthday Edition September 2015 and it's contents
Birchbox September Birthday Edition.
Another month, another Birchbox! September is never really a month I look forward too. I am not someone who really copes well with change and for a multitude of reasons September has always been filled with it. I have had quite a lot of change recently and have been pretty stressed about it so at least this month was Birchbox's Birthday Edition Box and I have to admit, this coming through my letterbox probably cheered me up a bit more than it should have! I may need to get some more hobbies/interests....

I think this months design is really, really pretty. This month there was the choice of two designs and I chose this one because the watercolour balloons and the simplistic yet bright design instantly grabbed my attention. This months box contained some great products and I am happily using all of them!

These are the contents from the BirchBox Birthday Edition September 2015.
Clockwise: The Pore sessional by Benefit, Laqa&co. Cheeky Lip Miniature in 'Cray Cray', Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Face Polish, Best Hair Day Brush by Birchbox, Beauty Wash by Beauty Protector, Illamasqua 'Hydra Veil'.
My favourite product this month was this Best Hair Day Comb, which is actually made by Birchbox. I had seen a few people have them in their boxes previously and was very jealous so I am so happy to have my own. They are very similar to a Tangle Teezer but smaller and the bristles are a little shorter. It still works great and I am so happy to have it to keep in my shower and really go to town on my knots!

I also have loved the 'Pore fessional' by Benefit. Having a miniature of this is great as it can easily be popped into a handbag and I can use it on the go. I really struggle with mid-afternoon, sudden oil eruptions on my face and having the 'Pore fessional' has been great as it just magics away oil and shininess in an instant! Its very nice when a product does exactly what it sets out to do and does it well!

I would also like to mention the 'Hydra Veil' by Illamasqua. Sadly, I have been less than enamoured by this. I was very excited when I first saw by box contained it as I really like Illamasqua and do struggle with some dryness in the mornings that really doesn't set my makeup off to the best start. Sadly, I didn't find it did anything for my skin. It also has a vile, jelly consistency that is very unpleasant to use. Although it does sink into the skin quite nicely it does feel a bit sticky on the skin and nothing about it screamed its tag line of 'rehydration gel'.


Are you a Birchbox Subscriber?

Let me know!



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Saturday, 12 September 2015

Habitat Homeware Wishlist!

Habitat Homeware Wishlist!



Multi color throw pillow / Sofa / Euro lounger / Drew white accent table / POISE NATURAL Wood Ash wood and silver metal LED desk lamp - HabitatUK / Small grey and yellow cotton rug 120 x 180cm / Bamboo and white lacquer tall side table / Green spotted clay vase

This is a Wishlist of all the amazing products currently at Habitat. I visited one of their stores recently and was blown away by how many things I would happily have put in my house.  Now whilst a few of these things are out of my budget *ahem* the sofa! I was still pleasantly surprised by the price of many of the items and it's nice to see Habitat selling some more affordable items.

Do you have a homeware wishlist?

Let me know!!
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Tuesday, 8 September 2015

The Library of Fragrance 'Dragon Fruit'.


Library of Fragrance Dragonfruit
I recently won a competition over on Chapter and Circle for the amazing The Library of Fragrance 'Dragon Fruit' scent! I don't win very many things so I was very excited as I had been eying up their products for a while. I love unusual scents and the idea of having scents that replicate real things is something that really interests me. The Library of Fragrance have such a diverse range of scents with everything from 'Marshmallow' to 'Banana Flambé'. They even some more unusual scents like 'Play-Doh' showing there really is a different fragrance for everyone and everyday!

This is the first of their scents I have ever tried and it has instantly makes me want to try more! I know I shouldn't be as it is called Dragon Fruit but I was a little shocked at how real it smells. It has that amazing fresh fruit smell, that is a little sweet but also very wearable. It's a great everyday fragrance as it is not too heavy and that fresh scent really does come through. It's refreshing and invigorating without being overpowering or too dominant. I think I have been wearing it everyday since I got it and it has been lasting really well throughout the day. Every now and again I get a little hit of it and it instantly lifts my mood!

Overall I really love The Library of Fragrance Dragon Fruit scent and I am so glad to have another everyday scent to add to my collection. As we speak I am deliberating which fragrance to try next! I would also like to say a massive thank you to Rhiân from Chapter and Circle for running the competition and also being very lovely! Rhiân's blog is so beautiful and leaves me very envious! 

Have you tried any of the Library Of Fragrance scents?

Let me know!

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Tuesday, 1 September 2015

August Favourites.

Left to Right: Rituals Fortune Scrub, Bourjois Nude Sensation, Loreal Volume Million Lashes Feline, Huygens Exfoliating Scrub & Bourjois Round Blush Pot in the shade 41 Healthy Mix.
August has been very busy for me. This month I moved back to Brighton and now have a lovely, super centrally located flat seconds from the sea! Being back has been so nice and I am happy to report that I am actually not missing Manchester one bit! Sun and sea tops grey any day! Moving though has been very stressful and getting the new flat ready has taken quite a bit more time than anticipated which has meant less time for skincare, makeup, hair etc. I have, though, found a few great products amongst all the mess and here they are!

Clockwise: Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation, Bourjois Little Round Blush Pot in 41 Healthy Mix & Volume Million Lashes Feline Mascara.
Probably my favourite find of the month has been the Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation. My previous blog post is a review so I won't say too much as you can read all about it here. It's a light coverage that really just helps brighten up my face, evening out my skin tone and redness whilst still looking really natural. It blends really nicely, lasts well and just helps give a really healthy, natural glow.

Another find this month was also another Bourjois products. I have been wanting a peachy toned blush for a long time now but have never been brave enough until now. When I saw the Bourjois Little Round Blush Pot in the shade Healthy Mix I finally found a shade that I though I could pull off. It is very peachy toned but not too bright, like many. It's quite a soft and build able colour and it helps make my cheeks pop just a little and look really glowing and healthy.

Another products I always struggle to find is a mascara as I am very particular about them. I was previously using the Loreal Volume Million Lashes Mascara and loved it but upon wondering to boots to replace it I discovered the Volume Million Lashes Feline. I decided to try it out as it has a curved wand this time and I was glad to find that the formula was still very much the same as the original. It gives great length to lashes but also thickens them a little to make lashes look really full but not at all clumpy.

Left to Right: Rituals Fortune Scrub & Huygens Exfoliating Scrub
This month was the first time I tried out a Birchbox and I was very happy with my selection of products. This month, there were two standouts with the first being the Huygens Exfoliating Cream. Huygens is not a brand I had much about, only a few rave reviews so I was really curious to try it out. It is a really gentle facial scrub that uses rice particles to exfoliate and my skin just loves it. It really just vanishes that horrible built up feeling my skin sometimes gets but is still super gentle and since using I think I have seen an improvement in my skin!

From my Birchbox this month, I have also been loving the Rituals Fortune Scrub. I am not someone who is really into body products, I use them but they don't really interest me but this is amazing. It left my skin really smooth and I only needed a really small amount. It smelt like cola (no lie) and citrus and was just refreshing and I can't imagine being without it on a winters morning!

Have you tried any of August's Favourites?

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Sunday, 30 August 2015

Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation.

Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation in the shade no. 41 Nude Clair
Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation in no. 41 Nude Clair.

Recently I have been looking for a lighter foundation that I can just whip on, no fuss, no brushes, no sponges etc. For those days when I am not in the mood for too much makeup (most of the time) but I just want to even things out a little bit all over, making myself look a bit more awake. I am someone who finds buying foundations awkward and more often than not I buy the wrong shade. This means I tend to stick to the same things over and over. The other day in Superdrug I decided to just bite the bullet and picked up one I had heard nothing about, the Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation in no. 41 Nude Clair.

So far I have been very happy with it! It has a light/sheer coverage but still does a great job at getting rid of redness and really evens out my skin. It creates a very light, airbrush kind of effect that still looks natural. It didn't quite cover my spots but it did a pretty good job at blurring my scars, whilst still allowing my natural skin tone to come through a little. Although light, it did still make a big difference to my complexion, really brightening it and making me look much more awake and healthy looking.

Bourjois Nude Sensation Foundation in the shade no.41 Nude Clair
Lightly whipped/creamy texture.

Bourjois always bring out great foundations that lean towards the lighter side and the Nude Sensation Foundation reminds me slightly of the Bourjois 10 Hour Sleep Effect Foundation in how it brightens the face. It also makes it glowy but not dewy or shiny as it has a slightly matte finish. Although slightly matte, it is still very light texture as it's quite a creamy/whipped foundation. It feels really nice on the skin and is also really easy to blend. I want this to be a quick, throw on, so I just used my fingers to blend and it worked into the skin really nicely, melting in. I didn't feel it on my skin throughout the day and it was really nice to wear. Whenever I catch glimpses of my reflection I am always impressed at how natural looking it is. For such a light foundation it also had some pretty good staying power and I didn't notice it fading much towards the end of the day.



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Saturday, 29 August 2015

DevaFuser by Devacurl

Front: DevaFuser by DevaCurl
DevaCurl are known for their curly expertise and I have always been a bit of a fan so when they came out with the DevaFuser I was hooked. Sadly DevaCurl is not really available in the UK and rather hard to get hold of this side of the Atlantic. Nevertheless I was not deterred, finding one on ebay and one fierce bidding war later, it was mine! I have been using it for about 6 months now and have been really pleased with it the results and how it convenient it has been. If you are someone who gets on well with your average diffuser then this is might not be for you. If you are like me and your hair just won't get along with blow drying and defusing then I would very much recommend the DevaFuser.

DevaFuser by DevaCurl.
There is no escaping that it looks a little well... odd! Whilst it might get some strange looks the reason that the DevaFuser works so well is because of its unique shape. Being shaped like a hand means its a lot easier to get right into the hair, without disturbing the curls. It can be used more like a regular diffuser, cupping the hair to increase the curls or you can slide it in between curls without disrupting the curl pattern and adding a little lift to the roots. As you can use the hand shape to lift the roots it also means standing with my head upside down for half an hour is a thing of the past! It can also reach more areas of hair at a time, meaning more even drying. Unfortunately I don't think that it dries my hair as fast as a regular diffuser. It's probably about 30% slower but because the air flow is more controlled it works better at controlling frizz and damage.

The way it attaches is by using a rubber strip around the outside of the base that adjusts to suit different sizes. It is very tight and does take some practice to get on and off but it does have enough stretch to fit most hairdryers. I use a babyliss hairdryer and it fits pretty well, I would probably opt for a slightly hairdryer though as anything particularly wide could be a struggle. Sadly, I have noticed some cracking and strain marks on the plastic, which is a little worrying. They are very small cracks but it seems this could become an issue over time.


Are you a DevaCurl Fan?

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Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Ouidad Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel.

Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel

 Ouidad is a brand that I have been wanting to try for a very long time now. I am constantly hearing amazing things about their products from US bloggers so a few months ago I finally bit the bullet and ordered the Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel. After trying it out for a good few months I have had some really great results.

 The biggest plus point for me is that it gives me really soft, defined curls that don't feel dry, stiff or sticky at all. Although there are many good products out there for curls, a lot are guilty of creating that built up, crunchy feeling reminiscent of some of the worst parts of the 90's. With a lot of products this can be down to using too much and I am someone who really struggles to control the amount of product I am using from day to day. I have been using this stuff for a while now and I don't think I have ever accidentally used too much. Even though, being a gel, you might expect the opposite, you would have to use ALOT in order to do this. The worst I have had is my hair feel a little too heavy, right after its dried but the next day after I have slept on it, it seems to go away. I think because it is such a thin gel it can disperse through the hair easily, coating the curls finely and evenly rather than

  In the UK heat isn't too much of an issue but the humidity can get a bit out of control. So far the Heat and Humidity gel has done a good job controlling frizz and keeping things smoother. I do find that it does add a just a little weight to my curls, which I like in a product but if your hair is particularly fine you may not need very much. I think that because it is a little heavier it helps my curls last for as long as I need to them to and 3rd day hair looks very much the same as first day!

 It is a little on the pricier side but a lot is not necessary and in around 6 weeks I have only used around 1/8th of the bottle, which is pretty good. It also comes in a larger and more economical size, which I am 99% sure I will be purchasing when this one runs out!


Have you tried any Ouidad products?

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Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Ikea Homeware Haul!

Ikea Homeware Haul



PLANT home decor, £1.45 / MALM / LINNMON LERBERG / LAIVA / ORDNING / MULIG / IKEA Kardemumma, £3.82 / IKEA Jäll, £3.18 / JOXTORP / JOXTORP

 I went to Ikea a few days ago and here are some of the things I bought! Mostly bedroom and office furniture but some decorative items and kitchenware too! I moved house a few weeks ago and I am going back to University at the end of September so I really needed to get a few things to get my life more in order!

 I absolutely love Ikea and could easily spend a week walking around (sad, I know!). Sadly this time was a little bit rushed so I didn't have time to get all of the smaller/decorative/fun things I wanted but it probably ended up just saving me from myself! Enjoy!

* Desk is listed as 150x60cm but I actually have the 200x60cm version.


Are you an Ikea fan?

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Monday, 24 August 2015

Beauty || Birchbox August 2015

This is a picture of the August 2015 Birchbox
Birchbox August '15
 I recently signed up to the Birchbox subscription service and I am very excited to show you what my first box was like! Birchbox is a box subscription service that provides full size and trial size samples, delivered straight to your door, once a month. There are options for 1 box, 3 boxes or a full 12 month subscription. I decided to go for the one box this time as this is my first one, which I am really happy there is the option to do! It was really easy to order and arrived in 2 days, which for an impatient person such as myself is a massive bonus!

 Something I have always admired about Birchbox are their designs and have been drooling over them on Instagram for what feel likes forever! Now I have one of my own I am happy to report that not only is it pretty but its also really strong and well made. The attention to detail and amazing design work on all of their literature is lovely and just makes the whole experience very special.

Emoji Stickers!!
Yes, those are emoji stickers! Birchbox seems to often include little extra bonus items and these emoji stickers were very well received! I love that they are a bit silly and its nice to see that Birchbox doesn't take itself so seriously! In the box you also receive a book (not pictured) explaining all of the products and how to use them. The products also come in a small drawstring bag, which again, is really well made and strong and I can see it coming in very useful.

Laura Mercier Kohl Eye Pencil in Black Violet, Huygens Exfoliating Cream, Benefit Highbeam,  Illamasqua HydraVeil, Rituals Fortune Scrub & Keblo Clarifying Shanpoo.
Everyone that signs up to a Birchbox has a profile that tailors the products to your interests/preferences. For example eye colour, hair type etc. This time round I got the Laura Mercier Kohl Eyeliner Pencil in Black Violet, the Huygens Exfoliating Cream, Benefit Highbeam, Illamasqua HydraVeil, Rituals Fortune Scrub and the Keblo Clarifying Shampoo. I was really happy with this section of products and could definitely tell that my personal preferences had been taken into consideration. Having something so tailored to you really does make the experience more exciting and means less wasted products you would never want and better value for money!

Huygens Exfoliating Cream & Rituals Fortune Scrub
The two standouts for me were the Huygens Exfoliating Cream and the Rituals Fortune Scrub. I am a massive skincare enthusiast, which is lucky as my skin is very problematic. It seems to be pretty sensitive and very prone to redness but always feels like it needs to be exfoliated and gets that horrible build up kind of feeling. The Huygens Exfoliating Cream exfoliates really, really well but is also super gentle. It uses rice powder particles making it less harsh and left my skin feeling really smooth and soft. It's only a small tub but I only had to use the tiniest amount that I can see it actually lasting a while and I have no idea how I would ever get through a full size tub!

I was surprised by how much I also loved the Rituals Fortune Scrub. I can usually take or leave body care products and when I get given samples of them I usually just leave them in a drawer somewhere, never to be seen again. I just don't find them that exciting. Despite this I absolutely love the Rituals Fortune Scrub. It smells really citrusy but weirdly is also a little reminiscent of cola! Strange but also amazing. The tiniest amount makes my skin so really smooth and the smell is also really invigorating for those sleepy mornings and makes waking up a little more bearable!

Overall, as I am sure you can tell, I am a huge fan of Birchbox. I knew I would like it as the whole concept is right up my alley but after actually trying one I am very impressed. The quality and volume of the products is great, the service is easy to use and efficient and I really feel like I have gotten my monies worth! After only one box, I am completely, 100% sold.


Have you tried Birchbox yet? 

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Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Zoeva 106 Vegan Powder Brush.

Zoeva 106 Vegan Powder Brush
I have been wanting to try out some of the Zoeva brushes for a really long time. I have heard so many good things about them so when I saw how affordable they were I only wanted them more! Before I invested some money in a really good brush set, I thought I would give at least one of them a go first. I ordered mine though the Beauty Bay, which is an amazing site if you have not used it yet and very reasonably priced. I chose the 106 Vegan Powder Brush as I thought that a powder brush would give me really good idea of their texture and a powder brush is probably one of the few I will actually use most days.

The bristles (vegan obviously) are really, really soft and feel great against my skin. I was a little hesitant in ordering the vegan brush as sometimes they can be a little scratchy or irritating but the Zoeva vegan bristles are really soft. They hold onto product really well and distribute really evenly and lightly. The head of the brush is a little on the smaller size whereas I prefer mine to be a little larger but since using it a few weeks I no longer notice it. The handle is also much shorter than my other brushes, which is a little annoying as it gets a little lost amongst them. It does mean though that you are able to control the brush more carefully (which isn't such an issue for a powder brush but it will be for others) leading to a bit more precision.

Overall I think that it is a great brush and I have really been enjoying using it. Especially considering the price I think it is a really great buy and has really made me want to buy the entire set! I also love that it is 100% vegan/cruelty free and still is genuinely a great brush. Why should there have to be any compromise?! The only downside of the brush is that it is a little small, being both shorter and having a smaller head but I imagine that once I have the full set, this will not be such an issue. At least that is my justification for spending even more money this month, on beauty products!


Are you a Zoeva Fan?

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Monday, 17 August 2015

How to Make Moving Less Stressful!

How to Make Moving Less Stressful, Easier, Moving Hacks
Yes, the roof is slightly off-centre. Yes, it will haunt me till the end of time.

I have recently moved house and city. The experience was, erm... pretty bloody stressful. Lack of organisation, timing, a little bit of laziness and naivety meant that what would have been a tiring, hectic process just became unbelievably stressful. After I moved in and the storm had passed, upon a little reflection, I figured out somethings I would have done better!

Probably the thing I most regret is not spending money on storage. Stackable boxes, dividers etc are eternally useful to have around and when moving are a life saver. I have always skimped on this before, trying to reduce the costs of moving but if you can its a great investment. Not only does it make everything ten times easier but you will always find them useful in keeping your new place in order and maybe inspire you to be more organised!

Take photos of electronics, wires and difficult to assemble furniture and you will thank yourself later. If you have any game consoles or stereos and are not the best with technology, then taking photos is a good way to ensure speedy unpacking. It is also a great idea if, like me, you own any Ikea furniture, don't keep instructions and found assembling it with them hard enough the first time!

Although it will add extra time onto packing, there is no point taking things you don't want with you so clear out! Clear as much as possible and rehome useful items. It's an obvious one but one I always end up half-arseing it and regretting it. This time I did a much better job and it was a great way to lessen the load. It really is the best time as you will probably be a little harsher, more realistic and you have something motivating you. Many charities will also come and collect donations if it is worth their time.

Change your address in advance. Something I always forget to do is start changing my address once I know I am moving. When I was younger it wasn't such a big deal but the past couple of years I have gained subscriptions, magazines, snack boxes etc and I get a lot more deliveries than I used to. Weeks later I am still clearing up the mess! Often with subscription services for instance if you have deadlines to cancel/change addresses and when moving this obviously gets put to the back of your mind!

Another big problem with moving is not having internet right away. If someone is living in your future home and you can contact them, ask them to cancel their internet when they leave. If the person previously occupying the property does not cancel their internet package themselves you will have to alert the company when you move in. It can then take weeks to cancel, disconnect it and even longer if you want to install a new provider afterwards. This wasn't possible for me this time but luckily we got the keys a few days early so were no more than 4 days without!!


Do you have any moving tips/advice?

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Sunday, 16 August 2015

Curly Hair Wishlist!

Curly Hair Wishlist


DevaCurl styling product, £13 / Kinky Curly styling product, £19 / Miss Jessie s straightening iron, £7.03 / Living Proof styling product, £17 / DevaCurl hair shampoo, £13 / Ouidad beauty product, £17 / Living Proof haircare, £18 / Ojon hair conditioner, £17 / SheaMoisture styling product, £6.39

These are some of the products that have been on my wishlist for a very long time now! I have been dying to try them out for years and heard nothing but amazing things about them! I have just joined Polyvore (finally) so expect many more wish lists and favourites to come!! 

Have you tried any on the list and are they worth the hype?

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