Wednesday, 31 December 2014

SALES HAUL

Hi lovelies! Welcome to my final post of 2014! And what better final post than a haul from the post Christmas sales? So, I did that thing we all do after Christmas, we don't need to do it, we all regret it come January, but it's fun so we do it anyway. I went sale shopping. I understand that the last thing we all need after Christmas is more new stuff, but I just can't resist a bargain, so it happened and I'm not even sorry. So, I thought I'd share what I got with you all to maybe inspire you to go pick up a few bargains yourself before the shops get wiped out!

I'll start with these, as these weren't on sale, but they're from Primark, so they were mega cheap anyway, so it's cool. I absolutely could not resist these chihuahua pajamas for obvious reasons and when I saw that they were only £5, I won't lie, I was tempted to buy two sets. I didn't, as there's literally no logic to that whatsoever, but I did pick up this amazingly soft, cosy dressing gown, also from Primark for just £10! It's super thick and warm and has teddy bear ears on the hood, for £10, I think it's absolutely incredible, I might actually get another one of these, or at least another Primark dressing gown, as I like to wash mine often and don't like to be without one!

Staying on the bedtime theme, I also picked up this gorgeous super soft deer print throw from Primark for only £3.90. I love these and have had lots of them, but as my little Chi likes to steal these to sleep on (thanks Belle!), they do get grubby (and chewed) fairly quickly so I like to stock up and don't mind too much when they're as cheap as this! Browsing around in Dorothy Perkins, I spotted this adorable microwavable Unicorn down from £8 to £5 and I couldn't resist. I have a bit of a soft spot for all things Chihuahua or Unicorn themed right now, so this little cutie was definitely coming home with me. What shall I call her? Leave a name suggestion in the comments for me!

This beautiful bra was only £3 in Primark, which is just amazing. I think it looks so much more expensive than it is and similar bras in lingerie stores would easily cost you £20 plus, so for less than £5, I was seriously impressed by this. I'd definitely recommend looking in Primark if you're after some new undies, as they're mega cheap in the sale - provided you can find your size!

This Skinny Dip iPad mini case was another gorgeous bargain at just £10 from Dorothy Perkins. I'm forever changing my iPad case, but my favourite kinds are always the flip cases as they protect it while I'm carting it around in my handbag. Skinny Dip just do the most gorgeous cases and this is actually my second one. I used my first until it was literally falling to bits and I have no doubt this beauty will be the same. I think the silver with the pastel gems is just beautiful and it feels really sturdy so I know my iPad is safe.

I didn't find too many things in the clothing sales, but I did find this cute oversized jumper for £5 from Primark and cute tartan bodycon skirt for £9 from New Look. I love the jumper as it was be worn as a simple, cosy piece but I also wore it the other day with a big statement necklace to go out for a meal with friends and it looked fab dressed up too. I don't need to tell you why the skirt is amazing, Clueless anyone?

I was seriously chuffed with this find from Wilkos, it contains four miniature John Frieda Sheer Blonde products, a Shampoo, Conditioner, Hair Spray and a sachet of Intensive Conditioner all for just £2.50!! Honestly I don't know why I didn't pick up more of these and if my local Wilkos has more when I next go back, I definitely will be picking up some more. I think they had these for Brunettes as well as the Frizz Ease range so it's worth checking your local store to see if they have one suited to your hair.

Finally, how could I not pick up a Soap and Glory set? I love the Sugar Crush range so this set was just perfect. As this was originally £18, it was only £9 in the 50% off sale and considering the Body Butter in here alone is worth £10.50, that's a pretty bloody fantastic deal! Again, sort of wishing I'd picked up another of these, but I have so many body lotions, shower gels and scrubs that I definitely don't need to buy more, but who could resist such a steal? If there are any of these sets left in your Boots, you should definitely grab it while you can.

Hope you enjoyed! What have you picked up in the sales?

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HOW TO ACCESSORIZE DIFFERENT TYPES OF DIAMOND BRACELETS

According to history, the word bracelet was originally derived from the Greek word, "brachile," which translates to "of the arm." Bracelets have been around since 7,500 BC and Egyptian times. Since that time, they have been worn in religious or traditional ceremonies, as well as being given as gifts, to show affection and love.
In particular, diamond bracelets have become popular as they are typically set in quality metals like yellow or white gold or platinum. They also feature exquisite designs with diamond studs that will make any outfit look more elegant.
Throughout history, different Royals have worn famous bracelets designed by famous designers like Cartier or Bvlgari. Some of these include the Bvlgari Emerald Suite diamond and emerald bracelet that Elizabeth Taylor owned. It featured 13 square and rectangular cut sparkling emeralds, intermingled by square diamonds. The Royals also owned some interesting and famous bracelets, such as the Duchess of Windsor's Onyx and Diamond Panther bracelet by Cartier. It was custom made and looked real.
Alternatively, Queen Mary prefers a more classic look with a single strand of pearl bracelet, finished with 2 fancy diamonds as clasps. While you may not be able to find replicas of these famous bracelets, you'll find plenty of stunning diamond bracelets online at Kalmar Antiques.

Different kinds of diamond bracelets

Depending on what kind you prefer, diamond bracelets may be worn individually or worn together with a few different kinds. Some look best as your main diamond accessory, where others do well with stacking them or wearing some on the other wrist. Still, it’s your call as to how you want to wear your bracelets. Play around with one and the other and see which goes well with what. For sure, there will be pairs (or even more) which will look gorgeous when worn together.
  • Diamond Tennis Bracelets-Also referred to as diamond line bracelets, tennis bracelets feature thin, stylish bracelet. They come in different settings, ranging from a classic everyday setting with three or four prongs or an elegant bezel pattern to designer tennis bracelets with two-tone metals and intricate designs. Tennis bracelets are flexible and therefore, the length can be adjusted by removing or adding links though most range from six and a half to eight inches. The tennis bracelet changed names from the line bracelet in 1987 when tennis player Chris Evert lost her diamond bracelet during a US Open match. The clasp broke, and she stopped the match until it had been relocated.
  • Diamond Bangles-Bangles literally slip on your wrist and are meant to be worn loosely. Some, known as the incomplete bangle, feature a small opening on the underside of your wrist so you can slip on sideways instead. As these can't be adjusted select one that fits comfortably. The most common size is around seven inches. In addition, bangles vary in thickness--some are very thin and you may opt to layer several together, while others are thicker. These work well to compliment your everyday attire, and the diamonds cover the entire width of the band, showing plenty of sparkle.
  • Diamond and Gemstone Bracelets- These bracelets allow you to choose from many different styles, including exquisite vintage or designer diamond bracelets that add extra details. Supplementing a tennis bracelet with alternating colorful gemstones that add sparkle and pop of color to accessorize your apparel.
  • Diamond Charm Bracelets- The bracelet is comprised of metal links, such as white gold or platinum. Each charm is attached to a link around the circumference of the bracelet. Some charms have a family history or symbolism of a name, while other charms are presented for different milestones like 16th birthdays, graduation, or marriage. The charm may be completely created out of diamonds or the diamond may be a focal point like the center of a flower or the inside of a heart.

How to Accessorize with Diamond Bracelets

Now that you own a gorgeous tennis bracelet, you actually want to wear it, instead of having it sit in your jewellery box forever. If it's a designer one and fancier, it's best to wear it with formal wear to black-tie weddings or the theatre or movie premieres. You can pair your bracelet with simple diamond studs so it doesn't overpower the look and consider wearing an elegant diamond pendant. If you choose to wear more than one bracelet, feature your diamond tennis bracelet on one wrist and a few simple sterling silver or gold bangles on the other. Your opponents will get knocked out with your stunning collection and won’t be able to concentrate on the tennis balls.

Purchasing Diamond Bracelets

Are you in the market for a new diamond bracelet? Whether it's a vintage or antique one or a more contemporary style, in Sydney, you can purchase jewellery locally or buy jewellery online from Kalmar Antiques. They offer a variety of options, including an antique diamond and sapphire bracelet from the Edwardian era. Consisting of over 150 diamonds and weighing more than six carats, this piece is exquisite. They also carry an antique diamond and pearl bracelet, hand crafted out of platinum and yellow gold with fine intricate designs, consisting of 95 rose-shaped diamonds and multiple pearls.
If you prefer a more modern style, the antique store also sells those too, including a white gold and diamond tennis bracelet, with a scroll work setting throughout the bracelet. With over 100 diamonds, your wrist is sure to sparkle. And your friends will surely look with curiosity and envy.

No matter what type of diamond bracelet you're looking for, you'll find an extensive selection online, if you just look at the right places.

Monday, 29 December 2014

WHAT I GOT FOR CHRISTMAS

Hi lovelies! I hope you've all had a fab Christmas and are looking forward to New Years! I've had a fab time spent with Family and Friends and had one of the most lovely and slightly manic (in a good way!!) Christmas's I've ever had! Today, I' doing my 'What I got for Christmas' post, I know some people can get a bit funny about these posts, but I love reading them, I know I'm not bragging or showing off, I just think these are interesting posts to read and I like to post the sort of thing that I like to read myself! So, without rambling on, let's get into it! 

As most of you will know, my main present from my parents came early this year, in the form of my teeny weeny Chihuahua puppy, Belle! She's a little princess and she knows and I would not have her any other way! She's just the most loving and affectionate puppy ever, she loves cuddles, toys and stealing socks. She is honestly the best Christmas present I've ever had in my life and I love her to pieces.

As for presents on the day, the one thing I actually asked for from Darren this year was a Michael Kors bag. After much deliberating, I ended up going for the Medium Black Saffiano Tote. I love it as it's such a perfect size, not too big, or too small and it has plenty of space and lots of pockets inside which I love. It's also so beautiful it kind of makes me want to cry. Belle has actually climbed inside once or twice and while I don't condone carrying your puppy around in a handbag, I have to say she looked seriously adorable!

I wasn't expecting much else from Darren this year as I'm fully aware of how much Michael Kors bags cost, but he really spoiled me this year and I'm so grateful for everything he picked! He did know that I wanted the little Posietint and Highbeam duo from ASOS (it was featured on one of my gift guides!!) but he picked everything else out himself so I was seriously impressed with his choices! He picked up not one, not two but three other Benefit products, Hervana Blush, Sugarlicious kit which comes with miniatures of the Sugarbomb Blush and Lip Gloss and Benetint and Highbeam and then this amazing Bella Bamba duo, which comes with the full sized Blush and a miniature of Cha Cha tint, which I've never tried before. If you'd like any reviews of any of these products, just let me know! The other gifts were all super sweet as he got me a giant pink lollipop, some chocolates and some fuzzy socks (which I put on right away so didn't actually photograph!!), then the Soap & Glory Smoothie Star body milk, which was really thoughtful as I'd told him that the last of my other one had gone a bit funny (I left it open in the steamy bathroom a few times, oops!), he also loves the scent of this himself, so loves it when I wear this, which may have something to do with why he bought it! The last two things he picked out were these tealights in my favourite Yankee Candle scent 'Snowflake Cookie' (serious sweet theme) and this pretty little heart shaped tealight holder, as I didn't actually have a tealight holder already, so that's super useful. I think he did so well and I was so touched by the thought and effort he went to to choose these gifts! 

My sister always finds little cute and quirky gifts, but as I'd actually asked her for the Benefit 'Easiest Nudes Ever' eyeshadow kit (after loving the Most Glamorous Nudes one so much!) I wasn't expecting her to get me much else, but she picked out some lovely bits and I was absolutely thrilled with them. She got me some fuzzy socks, which I wear all the time so this was definitely very useful and a mini 'Blush' Lily Flame candle. Lily Flame candles are definitely a 'Hannah Present' as she's got me quite a few over the years and always buys them for my Mum, so I was absolutely thrilled to get this one, as it's a scent I've not actually tried before. Finally, she got me this gorgeous little dish that says 'Random Hair grips, Fake Eyelash & Half an Earring', I love this as it's now sitting on my beside table housing my hair grips, watch and chihuahua shaped necklace. I love little things like this as they're so useful, but this one is super pretty too so it looks fab as well as being very useful!

Our Friend Nicola, who is Hannah's Housemate at Uni spent Christmas with us this year and she was so generous with her presents! I was shocked and absolutely thrilled when I opened this present to find a black box with MAC printed across it. Back in November, I was on the phone to Hannah and Nicola and I was saying how I'd gone to buy this 'Ruby Woo Keepsakes' kit, but the store I was in had sold out. I didn't have a clue that Nicola was taking this all in as gift inspiration so I was super shocked to see that she'd remembered and picked this up for me. Such a babe! I'd not tried Ruby Woo before but wow. I love a matte red but this one is just incredible. I won't go into too much detail as I may review this kit, but just know it is bloody amazing!

As if the gorgeous MAC kit wasn't enough, Nicola also got me this stunning little jewellery tray, which I think I'm actually going to use on my perfume shelf and a gorgeous sparkly OPI Polish and some beautiful bangles from New Look. I don't generally buy myself lots of jewellery as it's just something I forget to look at while I'm shopping, so these are great to have! I particularly love the one with the little tiger heads, so expect some arm candy instagram posts coming up!

Every year my Mum does a stocking for me and my sister and this year it was just amazing! She always gets me a Venus & Olay razor, as they're my fave, but again, another thing I often forget to buy (and end up using a blunt old one, or crappy cheap one!!), an adorable notebook, as I do love a good list, some Boux Avenue oil blotting papers, a portable phone charger (actually chosen by my Dad!), Little Miss Naughty tissues (my sister got Little Miss Sunshine, so make of that what you will), a cute coin purse (I'm determined to always have change in 2015, New Years resolution!), the Pixie Lott Dry Shampoo, Cuticle Sticks, a Nail Soaking tray and some stunning cosy socks - which I guarantee Belle will steal the Pom Poms from.

As I'd gotten my gorgeous little Puppy, I wasn't expecting much from my parents, but they were super lovely and got me some amazing unexpected goodies! I got some underwear from my favourite lingerie shop, Boux Avenue (chosen by my Mum, of course!!) and a stunning bodycare set, which I still don't want to open, as it's so super pretty! Does anyone else find cute gift boxes and packaging hard to throw away?

Also from my parents, I got the 'Best of Benefit' kit (yes I did buy this for myself, but I told my Mum I didn't want her to return this, as I've now got all these miniatures in a make up bag in my handbag to take out with me every day, so that's absolutely fab! I also got the 'Sugarglam Fairies' kit which includes a full size PoreFessional, Hoola Bronzer and They're Real Mascara along with a miniature of Benetint - all my favourite Benefit products! They're housed in this super adorable tin, which is fab as I'm now using it to keep all of my Benefit 'spares' in, aka the ones I'm not using right now, or have back ups of so that's just perfect!

Finally, a super thoughtful gift that my Dad got all by himself is this gorgeous Silk Handbag Mirror from Sumptuosity (I think you can find them on Not On The Highstreet), he used my favourite colour and favourite song to personalize this and I think it's just amazing. Super thoughtful gifts like this are always my favourites.

From my Uncle and his Partner, I got this Girls Night In Trivia Game, which I haven't played yet, but I'm sure it'll be fab! They also got me some vodka, but that way obviously put to good use on Christmas day!! My Auntie and her Fiance got me these amazingly cosy 'fancy' socks (anyone else feel like socks are super fancy when they're boxed?).

My Grandparents on my Dad's side always seem to 'theme' their presents, which I asbolutely love. This year I helped my Nan pick out some gifts for my sister, two of which were penguin themed, so it was no surprise when she opened several penguin themed presents on Christmas day! Of course, this was no different for me and my gifts all seemed to be 'Bath and Bed' themed - which is fine by me as Christmas is a bloody tiring time of year! My Nan knows I love Disney, Beauty Products and John Frieda, so these Mickey and Minnie Mouse PJs, Shampoo and Conditioner and Beauticology gift set were super thoughtful. The scent of the Beauticology products is amazing too - I do love a good set of smellies! 

More smellies! Another thing that has hard to throw away packaging is this beautiful Sanctuary Gift Set from my Grandparents on my Mum's side. This set comes with loads of Sanctuary's best selling products all in this stunning gift box (which I'm determined to find a use for, as I just can't throw it away!), I've not actually tried Sanctuary products before, so I'm super excited to give these a go. If you like luxurious bath and body products, I definitely recommend picking this up in the Boots Sale - as it's such a great deal at 50% off and you get loads of product inside. I'll be reviewing some of these as I'm mega excited to try them!

A couple of my Mum's friends unexpectedly bought me gifts which was absolutely lovely. I got this Beauty Tools set from Superdrug, which is fab, as I'm now using the brushes inside the little makeup bag as my 'on the go' brushes inside my handbag. Another of my Mum's friends (who clearly knows me far too well!), got me this pocket mirror with 'I'm Ready For My Selfie' printed on it. Which is ridiculous as I've never taken a Selfie in my LIFE... Ahem.

A couple of gifts from my friends, I received this Body Shop Lip Balm Candy Cane in a Secret Santa, which is fab as I was going to buy this for myself and I really wanted it, but convinced myself I didn't need it, so I was thrilled when I got it! Again, these still aren't out of their packaging as it looks so festive and cute. Every time I use one I've just been putting it back, but I know I'll have to bring myself to throw the cardboard away soon! One of my Best friends got me this Hashtag from New Look, as she'd seen me eyeing it up on a shopping trip together. It's absolutely perfect for all those selfies I never take and looks fab in my room! She also got me some chocolates and a gorgeous huge set of bath and body products, but I've actually opened and used many of them already (I couldn't wait, they were so pink and pretty), so I didn't photograph them as they're mostly in my shower!!

Finally, these technically aren't mine, they're Belle's presents, she was thoroughly spoiled this year and she did receive lots of treats and toys, but the treats are opened and the toys have already been chewed so don't look so pretty any more, but I just had to share some of her adorable little gifts. These were all from my Mum and Dad, my Dad actually chose the little jumper which I am in love with. She looks adorable in it, but isn't quite used to wearing clothes yet, though she needs to get used to it, as she gets super cold when she goes outside bless her! She also received some Puppy Perfume (no, really), this is basically a fancied up pet freshener and it makes her smell of baby powder, which is probably the most adorable thing ever. Her fanciest present was courtesy of my Mum and is this adorable Harrods dog bowl, to tell you the truth, this is probably for cats, but she's so teeny tiny it's absolutely perfect for her and I love it to bits - as does Belle when it's filled with food.

Hope you enjoyed! What did you get for Christmas?
Please leave your link below if you've done a post like this too, as I love to be nosey!

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Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

SUPER LAST MINUTE GIFT IDEAS: LOOK FANTASTIC BENE-BARGAINS!


Hi lovelies! Another Benefit Cosmetics centred post today - can you tell I'm obsessed?! I just had to share this though, as I couldn't get over the incredible deal! I had a sneaky little peek on Look Fantastic this morning and not only was I greeted with a banner offering FREE UK Next Day Delivery (perfect for Christmas Eve, Eve!) guaranteeing delivery in time for Christmas, but I also found these Benefit gift sets for a huge third off!

The Beauty Bon Bons set is worth £64.52 and is now down to just £26.33! This includes a full sized Highbeam, full size Hoola Bronzer and Deluxe miniatures of the Hoola Lipgloss, PoreFessional and They're Real Mascara. This is perfect for someone who loves Benefit already, or someone new to it, as it's a great way to try all these products.

The Crescent Row Delecta-Belles set includes four 10ml  perfumes and is worth £39.33 and is now only £19.66. Each perfume comes in a cute little gift box and is a perfect way to try them all out before you decide which one you want to buy full sized.

The SugarGlam Fairies set has a total value of £75.34 and is down to only £29.66 (I've actually just got my Mum to order this for me as she wanted to get me a little extra present!), this includes a gull size of Hoola Bronzer, They're Real Mascara and PoreFessional with a Benetint deluxe mini. I think this is absolutely incredible for the price and would make an amazing present for anyone new to Benefit as it's got four cult favourites included for an incredibly low price!

The Complexion Confections kit includes a full size of the Triple Performing Facial Emulsion and It's Potent Eye Cream with deluxe miniatures of the Instant Comeback Face Serum and PoreFessional Primer. This little set is worth a total of £61.35 and is down to an amazing £26.33. This is fab for someone who is after a new skincare routine, or just loves skincare products,

So that's it! Just a quick one as I wanted to let you all know now before the sell out or it's too late!
Will you be picking up a Bene-Bargain today?

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Saturday, 20 December 2014

BRAND HIGHLIGHT: BENEFIT COSMETICS




Hi lovelies. It feels like forever since I've updated my poor little corner of the internet! I won't ramble on as to why, as to be honest, there's no other reason other than being mega busy preparing for Christmas and having the worlds crappiest immune system and feeling pretty rubbish for the most part of this week! Anyway, boring bit over, let's get onto the topic of today's post! If you know me at all or have at least been reading my blog for a little while, you'll know that I absolutely love Benefit Cosmetics. So, today, I thought I'd do a post all about just why I love this brand! I've read a few brand focus posts on other peoples blogs and love to see peoples views on why they love a brand, top picks etc as I find it really useful and I figured this post may be useful to some of you, whether you are new to Benefit or use their products already, hopefully there'll be something new to you in this post.

First things first, I want to say that I am not sponsored by Benefit, nor was I asked to write this post. I just really love the brand! I have worked with Benefit from time to time though which leads me onto one reason why I love them. Benefit are one of the loveliest brands to work with as a blogger. Once you've worked with them once, they sometimes send little surprise packages out, which are always so beautifully presented and often come with little added treats inside! That aside though, even if I had never worked with the brand as a blogger, I would still buy and use their products as I think they're fantastic!

See, as a brand I think they almost always deliver on their promises, the products, at least in my opinion always do just what they say on the tin! Right now, my entire face of makeup excluding only lips is Benefit most days. While I do have a lot of other brands I decided to give this a go a little while back as I figured products from one brand are surely supposed to work together, right? So, using this logic, I switched up everything in my makeup bag, so my daily face consisted of, the PoreFessional Primer, Hello Flawless Powder and Foundation, Boi-ing Concealer, Benetint and Rockateur on cheeks, Highbeam as Highlight, Hoola Bronzer, Creaseless Cream Shadows as base with Worlds Most Glamorous Nudes Powder Shadows on top and They're Real mascara and Liner. Then I just use whatever on my lips as I really don't feel this makes a difference and I can't give up my MAC lippies. I can 100% genuinely say my makeup has never been better. 

As much as this backs up my theory that a full face of one brand definitely works, I think it also speaks volumes for Benefit in general. It's very rare that I find a brand that I love enough to buy every single product from, for example, I love MAC eyeshadow, lipstick and blush, but hate their foundations and concealers. I think Urban Decay shadows are fab, but could live without everything else. I could ramble on all day about several products from Benefit, but instead I'm going to list my top five for you all and do mini reviews of each to explain why they've made the top five! So, in no particular order...

Hoola Bronzer
This is incredible, it's such a cult product that I'm sure I don't need to explain this to you all. In case you haven't used this before though, it's basically a gorgeous, matte bronzer. What I think makes it unique is how buildable it is. If you wanted a lighter bronze, you can use it with a light hand, but if you have darker skin, have a tan or just want a darker bronzed look, it can be built up really well and never looks orange or patchy. It just goes on super smooth and gives a natural, bronzed look either all over or as a contour.

They're Real Mascara
Yes, it's hard to get off, yes you look like a panda if you don't get it off properly, but all this aside, it really is an incredible mascara. I do genuinely have a lot of people asking if my lashes are real when I wear this. As I work as a beauty therapist, a lot of people naturally assume I have lash extensions on and they're shocked when I tell them it's actually just this. So many of my clients have actually gone out and got this after I've told them what I use.

PoreFessional Primer
Another cult product that I think is more than worth the hype. If you suffer with large pores, or just want a primer that smooths the skin and gives a light coverage too, then this is definitely for you. It's perfect for under any kind of foundation and makes it stay on all day, but it's also fab to be worn alone with a little concealer if you don't want a full on foundation, I think this would work on most skin types, but it's particularly great if you have slightly oily or shiny skin as it has a lovely matte finish.

Benetint
This is a funny product, as a lot of people don't like it, but a lot of people love it. For me, it took a while for me to learn to use this properly, but now I know, I honestly couldn't live without it. I love blushers (Benefit ones are my faves, obvs!) and hate when my blush wears off throughout the day, as I don't feel complete without a flush to my cheeks. When I use any of the Benefit tints under my blush, I don't have to worry about my blush fading all day as the tint lasts ages. There is an art to using these and you really do need the tiniest amount, but once you start getting right, you will love these products. I particularly love Benetint as it's the original and I personally think it's the longest lasting.

Creaseless Cream Shadows
I love these. If I were to choose one shade in particular to recommend I'd say Birthday Suit, which is a gorgeous 'Brushed Chrome' colour, cool brown to you and me. What I love about these is that they make an incredible base for eyeshadows, keeping them in place with no creasing for hours and hours, but they also look beautiful on their own, as they're super pigmented and go on really smooth and even.

I know that Benefit aren't the cheapest brand in the world, but sometimes I think you really do get what you pay for and with this brand in particular, you definitely do. Not only do the products deliver on their promises, but the packaging is super cute too. I know it's not exactly a reason to buy a product, but let's face it, a makeup bag full of pretty prints and candy colours is certainly not a bad thing!

So, what are your thoughts? Do you love Benefit as much as me? If so (or if not!) tell me why in the comments, I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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Saturday, 13 December 2014

THE BODY SHOP BANANA SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER REVIEW



Hi lovelies! I'll be honest, I'm not sure if I've reviewed these before, so apologies if I have but just in case, I'm going to be doing another little review for you all today! As you will have gathered from the photos and title of this post, I am going to be talking about The Body Shop's Banana Shampoo and Conditioner. If you haven't heard about these before then first of all, where have you been? And second of all, go out right now (or, after reading this post) and buy them. From that, you can probably guess which direction this review is going in.

I'm not generally one to be loyal to one specific brand of shampoo or conditioner, I have a few favourites, but switch them up a lot. However, The Body Shop Banana duo is one that I will repurchase over and over again. It's not as though I use these all the time, because often I'll stick with my usual Herbal Essenses or John Frieda Sheer blonde, however, whenever I use these, I always remember exactly why I love it. For a start, these smell absolutely gorgeous, it's kind of an artificial banana smell, kind of like those foam banana sweets, so if that smell isn't your thing, then I probably would get these, but if like me, you absolutely love that scent, you will love these!

Not only do these smell amazing, but they also seriously do work. The shampoo lathers up really well, which I love and leaves your hair feeling squeaky clean without feeling dried out. The conditioner is quite thick and very yellow, which as a blonde, can be quite daunting, as yellow is generally not the look we're going for. However the colour of the conditioner does not actually effect your hair at all, unlike a purple shampoo or conditioner. It leaves your hair soft, shiny and manageable, without being weighed down or heavy - which is a problem I have a lot with thick conditioners. Best of all, your hair smells like super sweet bananas afterwards. It's just a subtle scent and in no way overpowering, which is great, because if I wear perfume, I want to smell of my perfume, not my shampoo, but it nice to have a little whiff of banana every now and then throughout the day too. At least I think so.

The reason I don't use these all the time isn't because you can't use these all the time, as you definitely could. They are most definitely a daily shampoo and conditioner (though if anyone at all connected to The Body Shop is reading, please bring out a leave in version of the conditioner), however I like to keep them as 'every now and then' products as I want to enjoy using them. When I use a product too much, even one with a super yummy scent, I start to get bored of the scent and while I still love it, it's just not as special. Like when you wear the same perfume every single day, as much as you love the scent, you love it more when you switch up your perfume for a while then come back to it. Hopefully some of you are with me on this, though I know many of you are probably reading this thinking, 'it's a freakin' shampoo! Use it whenever you want!' So let me know if you agree with me on that one!!

Overall, for £4.50 each, I think these beauties are definitely worth every penny! What do you think? Have you tried these, or would you like to? What's your fave shampoo and conditioner? 

Let me know!

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Thursday, 11 December 2014

BENEFIT HELLO FLAWLESS POWDER REVIEW










Hi lovelies! It feels like ages since I sat down to write an actual review! Today, I wanted to write about something I've been absolutely loving lately, which no surprise, is from Benefit! Benefit are hands down my favourite makeup brand and while some people do complain about the prices, I personally think that with this particular brand, you definitely get what you pay for, which is an adorably packaged, super high quality product. In all honesty, I've never been particularly loyal to one brand in the past,but this last year or so has been all about Benefit for me (which I will go into further detail on in an upcoming post) and today, I'm reviewing my new favourite face powder, 'Hello Flawless'.

Before, I'd been all about my MAC Mineralize skin finish and for me, absolutely nothing compared to that. However after trying several high street powders (none of which I have ever got on with!), I gave this beauty a go. I remembered that I'd gotten a mini size of this in a Benefit gift set that Darren got me a while ago and remembered liking it, so I gave it a go. If I say within two days I'd ordered the full size, can you guess where the rest of this review is going?

This powder is absolutely amazing. It's super finely milled so you don't get that chalky, powdery look and it goes on incredibly smoothly over absolutey any foundation. For a powder, this does provide quite a bit of coverage, which is something I look for in a powder, as I like to take a little compact like this out with me for touch ups during the day and don't like having to bring my foundation as well. As for lasting power, I generally don't need touch ups with this for a good 6-8 hours, although I might do if I were to use it in the summer to control shine, but that's really not an issue for me this time of year. This is great for controlling shine though, so if you have oilier skin I'm sure you'd love this, particularly as it's great for touch ups during the day! Another bonus, this doesn't go patchy as it wears away, which is something I seem to struggle with with lower priced powders. This stays even all over even as it starts to wear off, which is fab!

What's great about this little compact is that not only is the packaging adorable, it also comes with a good sized mirror built in as well as a separate compartment for a brush and sponge, making it really convinient for on the go touch ups. The brush provided isn't anything to scream about, but it's nice and soft and does the job, let's face it, who wants to carry a full size kabuki brush in their handbag?! Something that I love about this in particular, is that the separate compartment locks into place with a magnet, meaning it doesn't flap about when you're holding it trying to the use the mirror and the brush and sponge don't fall out when you open it. This may not be a big deal to some people, but it's the little touches like this that I absolutely love and I personally feel you only tend to get with a high end product. While I still love MAC's MSF Natural, the reason I would choose Hello Flawless over it is because the coverage is slightly better, I feel like it lasts slightly longer and wears better throughout the day and the compact is just generally more convinient, as it has the brush and mirror inside, meaning you don't have to carry those separately. 

What do you think? Have you tried is powder before? What's your go to face powder right now?

Let me know in the comments!

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Monday, 8 December 2014

THE CHRISTMAS TAG


1. What is your favourite Christmas Movie/s?
This is a tough one but I think I'd have to say The Holiday, I watch it every single year and never get tired of it. You can't beat Home Alone (any one, they're all fab!) too, but my absolute favourite is definitely The Holiday, fun fact, it is the only movie I will watch all the way through on my own. I'm generally not a movie person as I'm so easily distracted but I love that one!
2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
Christmas Morning, of course! I guess maybe it's tradition in some other countries to do this on Christmas Eve, as I've seen this on a couple of international blogs. While I find it really interesting to see what other peoples traditions are, for me it seems wrong to open presents on Christmas Eve! In the past, me and Darren have opened one small present from eachother on Christmas Eve, but that's it.
3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
There are so many! I think it's quite hard to pin point one exact memory, as each Christmas tends to be different in my house with different friends and family members there each year! I do remember one year though and I swear to god this is true, myself and my twin sister Hannah used to share a room and one Christmas, we'd tried and tried to get to sleep and the later it got, the more worried we were that Santa wasn't coming (because he knows when you are sleeping and knows when you're awake, duh) and then we both swore we heard sleigh bells. To this day, none of us know where it came from, in hindsight it was probably the neighbours or something, but at the age we were it was so magical. I also looked out of the window of our room at this point and saw Santa's Sleigh (a plane) flying through the sky with all it's lights on. 
4. Favourite festive food?
I'd have to be a bit predicable and just say Christmas dinner in general. It's more the whole event that the meal is that I like, as for once, we all sit round the table as a family, honestly this is a rarity unless we go to restaurants, and just enjoy each others company. Also, if you've never put sausage wrapped in bacon into a Yorkshire pudding, do it this year, you won't regret it.
5. Favourite Christmas gift?
My Christmas present came early this year in the form of my teeny tiny Chihuahua puppy Belle! She is definitely without a doubt the best Christmas present I've ever received. My parents bought her for me early as I was getting a puppy anyway, but wanted to get her properly settled into my house a little while before Christmas, so that it wouldn't be super overwhelming for her. I love her to bits and she's definitely the best Christmas present ever! 
6. Favourite Christmas scent?
I love Yankee candle's Snowflake Cookie if we're going for a candle but another scent that I love, that isn't technically a Christmas scent, but always reminds me of Christmas is Soap & Glory's Smoothie Star body lotion, a couple of Christmasses ago, I was absolutely obsessed with Soap & Glory and this body lotion in particular was my absolute favourite. I use it exclusively in December now as it a lovely, super sweet cookie type scent that always brings me back to the festive period!
7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
Not really as every Christmas is pretty different, the last couple of years it was just me and Darren for Christmas Eve, this year I think we'll be with friends and family and of course, Belle! So that'll mean lots of drinks and Christmas films I would imagine! When we were younger we used to pop our stockings up in our bedroom and leave a mince pie and a beer for Santa and a carrot for Rudolf (though I used to insist this was massively unfair on the other reindeers) but we've obviously grown out of that now! Sometimes I do wish there were still children in our family to celebrate Christmas with, but until someone has a baby that's not happening!
8. What tops your tree?
A simple gold star, I like my tree kept classy!! As a kid, I used to think my mum was so boring keeping the tree just gold, or red and gold but now I'm exactly the same! I decorated our tree this year and it's all bronze and gold and I love it! No chocolate baubles or brightly coloured plastic reindeer over here thank you.
9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
A Puppy!! It only took 20 years, but I finally got one. To be honest, it's probably for the best as puppies are a lot of work and they do mean you have to think twice about plans as you need to consider how long you're leaving them alone, toilet training, feeding etc and as a kid, all of those responsibilities would have fallen on my parents. Now I'm old enough to look after my own little bundle of fluff though, she's definitely the best present ever and absolutely worth picking up poop for!!
10. What's the best part about Christmas for you?
Bit of a cliché but, it honestly is spending time with all of the family. As with most families, we don't always see one another as often as we'd like to as life definitely gets in the way, but Christmas is a time where you make time for the people you love. I have to say, I also love buying, wrapping and giving presents too. I find it so exciting to go out looking for the perfect gift (or browse through online stores, but you get my point), then choose something you think they'll love, wrap it and make it look all pretty, then see their reaction on Christmas Day. I definitely prefer giving presents at Christmas, though I love getting them too, who doesn't!

So that's it for this post! I hope you've enjoyed this Christmas tag and definitely let me know if you've done it in the comments below as I absolutely love reading these.
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Friday, 5 December 2014

IS TECHNOLOGY REALLY SO BAD?


Hi lovelies! We're going to be having a bit of a chat today, so the beauty, fashion and festive rambles are going to be put on hold for a while for today, I hope you don't mind! Today, I wanted to talk to you all about something, because I think it'd be really interesting to get your thoughts on it.


When I was younger, my sister and I used to have a best friend who lived next door, the houses weren't attached, but we had windows that faced each other in both of our hallways upstairs. We used to write to each other on whiteboards, in huge letters, so that it was actually visible. We'd arrange at school to 'go to the window' at about 7pm for a chat and without fail, except one time for Shelly's wedding in Eastenders, obvs, we'd do this every single night. Then he moved away, suddenly our nightly window chats had to stop and we'd have to talk on the phone when we didn't see eachother at school and we'd have to hang up and redial when it got to an hour, as our landlines were only free for an hour. We didn't have mobile phones, Facebook or even msn back then, so those phone calls were our only way of communicating when we wanted to talk. At this point we were in different schools (he was a year older than Hannah and I!) and it was awful for us all to go from speaking to someone every single day, to being lucky to have a phone call once a week.

Going even further back, I used to have a friend in Primary School who was from America and one day, she told us she was going back. Her family were moving back out there and we were all so upset! We used to write letters back and forth, which would take days and weeks to get to one another, Christmas cards were late, birthdays were missed and a lot of our parents money was spent on international postage! We'd get disposable cameras to send photos of us and our friends, then you'd have to take them, wait for them to be developed (often to find your finger was over the lense in half of them!) and then finally pop them in an envelope in the hopes they'd reach the US safe and sound! Every now and then we'd get to email, which was super exciting, as you could send a message and it would get to her right away! At the time this was the most fascinating thing ever. However, the internet required dial up broadband, which meant if Mum was on the phone, no emails! And as we were too young to have our own email address, it was Dads email account and if he wasn't home, we had no chance!

Fast forward to today, I have both of these friends on Facebook and can get in touch with them at the touch of a button (or a few keys to be precise!). If I want to meet up with a friend, I can send them a quick text or whatsapp message and they can get back to me in a few seconds. I regularly email my grandparents when I can't get there to see them and can take photos whenever and wherever I like on my phone, only to be able to share them a few minutes later (after choosing the perfect filter of course), with whoever I like. Just a couple of days ago, a few friends and I were arranging a Christmas night out and we decided to do a secret santa, the problem was we couldn't all get together before the night out to draw names but guess what? There's an app for that! 

The point I'm trying to make is that technology isn't all bad. Sure we say it can make people unsociable, it can 'take over our lives' and we're living through instagram rather than in the moment, but is that so bad? Isn't it amazing that we can take a picture of anything and everything we want (not anything we want, don't be weird), to share with our friends and family? Isn't it incredible that even if our loved ones are thousands of miles away, we can talk to them and see them every single day if we want to through Facebook, Skype, whatsapp etc, without expensive phone bills? Isn't it amazing that we can look back on tweets and photos of little moments that we may otherwise have forgotten?

I guess what I'm trying to say, is that yes, we should cherish each moment with friends and family particularly at Christmas time, but if we can capture those little moments with the help of modern technology, then isn't that a good thing?


What do you think? Do you have a technology ban at Christmas time or do you like to capture your festive memories with the help of your phone?


Let me know!


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Wednesday, 3 December 2014

BEST OF THE BARGAINS CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE: BEAUTY


Victoria's Secret Body Sprays - £8.99 each - All Beauty
Philosophy Hands of Hope Bauble - £9.00 - Debenhams
John Frieda Kit - £7.00 - Wilko
Ted Baker London Beau Box - £10.00 - Boots
Lip Bullet Bauble - £5.00 - Topshop
Korres Wild Rose Brightening Collection - £10.00 - ASOS
Soap & Glory All The Right Smoothes Trio - £8.00 - Boots
Vanilla Brulee Treat Box - £7.00 - The Body Shop
Benefit Cheek Me Out Duo - £9.50 - ASOS
Steam Cream Bauble - £7.95 - ASOS

Hi lovelies! I'm back again with another Christmas Gift guide! As I mentioned in my stocking fillers post, Christmas is an expensive time and it's always worth looking around for a bargain when shopping for gifts. I'm hoping to make this post the first on many 'Best of the Bargains' Christmas Gift Guides, as going further into December, the most part of your Christmas shopping is probably(/ hopefully!!) finished and all that's left is the 'little extras'. Whether those little extras are gifts for friends, a little something to add to your Mum's gift, a stocking filler for your Sister or perhaps just something to add to your own wishlist, it's always great to find a great gift for less than £10 and that's exactly what these posts are all about! This particular post is focussed on Beauty, all ten of the gifts in this post are £10 or less. Sometimes cheaper gifts can look like cheaper gifts, but for this post, I've picked out 10 of what I think are great quality, luxurious gifts with a smaller price tag!

First of all, All Beauty have a huge selection of Victoria's Secret products, but these sprays in particular are great, as they're 'Holiday' themed according to the site. Fab for a girly girl's stocking! Philosophy are well known and lusted after by beauty lovers for their luxurious Christmas gifts, but the price tag can be a bit of a turn off, however this adorable little Hands of Hope Bauble is super affordable and actually has 10% off at Debenhams right now! Wilkos have an amazing selection of Gift sets this Christmas, but a couple that stood out for me were the John Frieda kits, these are available in both Blonde and Brunette and for such a teeny tiny price tag, they make an amazing stocking filler for any lady in your life. This is a particularly great gift for anyone going away over Christmas, as all the products are perfectly travel sized.

Ted Baker can do no wrong in my eyes and once again they've nailed it with their Christmas Gift Sets this year. This little kit comes in beautiful box, which could be kept and used afterwards and includes 4 miniature products in a beautiful scent with pretty packaging. As this is from Boots, it is of course, in their 3 for 2 offer, so you could save further if you're buying any other gifts in the store! Another brand that I think gets it right every Christmas is Topshop, who doesn't love a little treat from Topshop's makeup range? And who doesn't love it even more when it's in Bauble form? They do several of these Baubles with Lip Bullets, Lipsticks and Nail Polishes, so there's bound to be one to suit the lady you're buying for.

This Korres duo is fab for girls into skincare, perhaps mature ladies in particular such as your Mum or Nan, as it contains two, brightening, anti-ageing products. Korres are a brand that I really love personally, so I think this would be a great gift for someone that enjoys looking after their skin. A super safe gift for a friend, sister or any other girl in your life is a Soap & Glory gift, because honestly who doesn't love Soap & Glory? This All The Right Smooths trio is great, as it contains three of their best selling Body Butters, so there are three to try out if they haven't tried them before. Along the same theme, The Body Shop also have lots of Christmas Gifts to choose from and what I love about The Body Shop is that they have a huge range with a wide price range, so if you want a bigger gift for someone, they have bigger, higher priced gifts, but they also have lower priced gifts that are every bit as lovely. This little Vanilla Brulee treat box is lovely, as it contains miniatures of the Shower Gel and Body Butter, which everyone loves with a bath lily. The Vanilla Brulee scent is absolutely gorgeous too, super festive and perfect for the season.

I may have let out a little squeal when I saw this little Benefit Posietint and Highbeam duo from ASOS. This super cute little set contains two little deluxe miniatures of the products for only £9.50 - which saves you over 30%. Being a Benefan through and through, this is something I'd love to receive. I think it's such great value as the tints and highlighters from Benefit last such a long time as you only need a tiny amount. This would be a great stocking filler for someone who loves makeup but is fairly new to the brand, as it's good to try out the smaller sizes before committing to buying the full size. Finally, another super cute bauble, this fab Steam Cream Bauble would make a great stocking filler for anyone as Steam Cream is honestly such an incredible product and would suit any skin type. It also helps that it comes in a cute silver star ornament.

Phew! So, that's it, my top ten beauty bargains this year!
Let me know what you think, would you like to see any of these under your Christmas tree?

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Tuesday, 2 December 2014

LUXURY CHRISTMAS WISHES


Hi lovelies! Puppies aside, I've always had a few OTT wishes at Christmas as this year is no different. There is no way I'd actually ask for/ get any of these, particularly as this year I actually have got a puppy for Christmas! But I thought I'd share a few things that I've been drooling over this year! The Chanel watch from Pragnell is just gorgeous, I'd absolutely treasure something like this, provided I was brave enough to actually wear it! I think the silver and rose gold together just look lovely and as I don't have a silver watch, I'd love one similar to this, if not this exact one! I'm sure every blogger out there will agree with me on the Charlotte Tilbury set, how beautiful is this?? This is over £200 in Selfridges, which is a bit much for makeup, but we can dream right?

Two things a luxury wishlist couldn't be without are a Mulbs and a pair of Louboutins and this Willow Tote and the Bianca Patent pumps are just incredible. I genuinely feel like my wardrobe would be forever complete with these in it. I can honestly say owning a Mulberry Bag and a Pair of Loubs is a life goal of mine!

What do you think? What's on your luxury wishlist?

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