Monday, 28 April 2014

Manicure Monday: A Love For Lemon

Hello I hope that you all had a lovely weekend, today I'm bringing you the first in a little installment : Manicure Monday. Today's Manicure Monday is naturally Spring inspired - can you tell I love Spring?
I don't know about you but yellow is a colour that I can't help but want to embrace at this time of the year - it just seems appropriate wouldn't you say? Cue sunny days, daffodils and little chicks into your minds and we'll hopefully be on the same wavelength here... Plus pastels are so perfect during the spring months so I had a little dig around in my nail varnish draw this morning and these two from Rimmel instantly grabbed my attention. These are shades 280 Sunshine and 058 Lemon Drop, I really like Rimmel nail polishes as they are affordable and the colour range is pretty good. Before applying the nail varnish I prep my nails with a quick file - I love this green polka dot one from Cath Kidston at the moment.

Then to soften my cuticles I take a cotton bud and apply a really small amount of  Lush's Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter to each of my cuticles and then with the clean end I lightly massage it in. The reason I do this is because this product is packed with natural oils and ingredients that can make it a little on the greasy side and so you don't want your manicure sliding all over the place but you still want the benefit of the softer cuticles. Usually after that I'm good to go ahead with the polish, with Rimmel I usually find two coats of application does the job.
And voila, sunny spring nails!

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Sunday Catchup #3

Hey guys, how was your week? I've been home from my course for a fortnight and I feel as though my normal routines are back in full swing now, which makes me very happy indeed. The one thing I dislike most about being away from home is the disruption of my day to day habits. So it certainly feels nice to have a sense of normality back.

I'm going to be talking about something a little different in today's catchup and that is healthy eating. In the last few weeks I have been making a conscious effort to really try and eat more healthily. The reasons for this being that I want my body to benefit from natural, wholesome foods as apposed to feeding it any artificial processed nastiness. And obviously I wouldn't mind shifting a little bit of weight in the process too. Easter last week was a minor blip- I was quite behaved and stuck to nibbling on Mini Eggs and a few small Creme Egg sized chocolates from Aldi. But this week I was pretty much back on track with healthy intentions.

The main areas I want to improve are snacking and controlling portion sizes. How many times have I said that? But its time to go back to basics keeping things straight forward and simply try to ensure I'm snacking on good-for-me foods rather than quick convenient options and aim to reduce my portion sizes. I'm making small steps towards healthy changes, I stocked up on some seeds, nuts and fruits to snack on the other day and even got inspired into some baking after drooling over a recipe from Lydia Rose, which by the way is delicious and so simple, win win.

On the flip side of keeping healthy and staying active, I have no problems at all. I'm more motivated than ever and practically find myself skipping out the house to my Mini to get to the gym. I managed to do seven classes this week: incorporating everything from high impact cardio, to yoga to weight training. Plus on the day I was at home I did the first level of the 30 Day Shred. Tuesdays and Sundays are turning out to be my rest days lately. Hopefully if I stick to it I should begin to see some positive results come summer, new bikinis = motivation...

I also wanted to really say a really quick thanks to everyone who helped my blog reach 200 bloglovin followers the other day - I know that numbers aren't what matters but I still appreciate any bit of support I can get, so thank you.

Plus on the blog this week:
Beauty Haul
Empties #2

Do you live by any healthy living standards?

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Products I've Used Up | Empties #2

I'm back with another Empties post today...

Marc Jacobs Daisy 50ml.
This has been my signature scent for such a long time now, and has to be one of my absolute favourite day time perfumes. Its just so easy to wear - I'm an all round lover of Marc Jacobs fragrances but I think I'm ready to try something else soon just keep things different.  For that reason I wouldn't repurchase this at the moment.

Marc Jacobs Daisy shower gel.
I received this as part of a set although this is a lovely luxurious item, I wouldn't use it on its own as a shower gel - its purpose is mostly to enhance the smell of the perfume in my opinion. Whenever I used this I would always use my normal body wash first and pop this over top at the end. I probably wouldn't go out my way to buy this, however if it came as part of a set I would definitely use it.

The Body Shop White Musk body wash 250ml.
This was a freebie when I joined the rewards programme. Firstly the smell is absolutely divine it sort of reminds me a little bit of Flowerbomb, if you're familiar with that perfume for a comparison. Although as for the shower gel it just seemed to disappear really quickly and I definitely wasn't using too much. For 250ml it costs over £6 so I would only repurchase if in a decent sale.

Soap & Glory Clean On Me 75ml shower gel.
I tend to make sure I keep a travel sized body wash in my over night bag and this is always my chosen option and it got used up while I was away on my course this month. I've already replaced it in my over night bag!

The Body Shop Vitamin E 60ml cream cleanser.
Another travel sized item that got loved while away from home this month was the Vit E cream cleanser from The Body Shop. I have absolutely adored this and will 100% be repurchasing.

Lush Golden Egg.
Over the Easter weekend my bath was like a glisten gold tub of lush goodness - I loved loved loved this range from Lush.

Skin Therapy cotton wool pads.
I tend to go through cotton wool pads pretty quickly to remove eye makeup and so on these are cheap and cheerful from Wilkinsons.

Sure Women Clear Pure Crystal 48hr.
When it comes to antiperspirants I stick with what I know and what works for me which happens to be Sure. This is my last can of this in the old style design.

John Frieda Full Repair Deep Conditioner.
This was a lovely product to use once a week in the shower to give my bleached hair some TLC, it visibly made my hair look healthier and it felt like velvet afterwards. I'm not bleaching my hair at the moment but if I do again I would repurchase this.
What products have you been using up?

Monday, 21 April 2014

Beauty Haul | Benefit, Urban Decay, MAC + more

If you read my recent update post you may already know that I decided to quit my part time job a couple of weeks ago to begin persuing my career. This means that I will no longer be relying on a weekly wage that I have been accustomed to for the last 5 years and as a result no more beauty splurges or trips to my local Mac counter until I'm back on my feet again. With that knowledge my friend and I went on a lovely spend up last month while I was still earning and we definitely made sure it was a bloody good one! Here's what I got.

Urban Decay Naked 3.
I've wanted this palette since its release, and with all the beautiful spring rose pinky, goldy makeup looks flying around the bloggersphere in the last few weeks I finally gave in and purchased it from my local House of Fraser the stunning packaging alone is enough to make you weak in the knees. I definitely think that this is the prettiest palette from the Naked family and I don't own anything similar in terms of eyeshadows. I've pretty much worn this every chance I've got since buying it.

MAC Mineralized Blush - Dainty.
I have been lusting over this pretty pale pink mineralized blush from Mac for a while now. I love subtle pinks for every day blush but whats different about Dainty is that because its mineralized it has a little shimmer to it which makes it very pretty on the skin.

Benefit Instant Brow Pencil & High Brow.
Having only owned high street branded eye brow pencils I was excited to pick this up from Benefit. My friend and I both got our eyebrows done by the MUA as we were a little bit dubious to spend out without making sure we liked how it looked first. I had the light pencil applied with high brow penciled under the arch of my eyebrows and was definitely impressed with the results. I had some Boots points on my card which I put towards one of the pencils - isn't it a good feeling when you get to spend those points on something lovely?

Bourjois 24h Colour Edition - Petale de Glace.
This was purchased after watching a recent video from Vivianna Does Makeup. I thought that this looked so pretty on her and is really lovely for the spring being a toned down pinky cream eyeshadow . For the price its also really affordable.

Lush Popcorn Lip Scrub.
I finally picked up a lip scrub from Lush which I have been meaning to do for ages! I won't go into too much detail as I actually dedicated an entire post to a Lush haul here rather than make this post really long.

Victoria's Secret Body Mist - Love Spell, Pure Seduction & Coconut Passion.

I was so excited when I found out my local shopping centre was opening a Victoria's Secret store this Spring. It was the first time I'd been in a Victoria's secret shop and I knew I wanted to pick up some of the highly coveted body mists. These were purchased in a special offer where you could buy 7 for £36. My friend and I decided to go in together and pay half each meaning that for three and a bit each we only spent £18, considering that one of these costs £11 I thought that was an absolute bargain. These all smell incredible I can't stop picking them up and spritzing them, I also quite like using them as a bit of a room spray in my bedroom too.
 I'm sad to say that it may be a little while until I get to do another collective beauty haul of this size :p What have you been buying recently?

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Life Update

Over the last few weeks I've had to take a little back step from my blog, with the promise that I would do an update as soon as I got the chance to. So today I am going to be delivering that promise and dedicating a post to talking about all the changes that have been occurring in my life in the last month or so.
Warning - text heavy post!

When I began blogging again this year I wasn't sure how much of 'me' I was willing to share through this outlet, however I also didn't want this space to be reserved strictly for beauty related purposes only. After all I think its great to have a mixture of interests, and perhaps because of the circumstances I am going to discuss below I have decided to include a wider range of non-beauty topics here in between the bulk of my usual ramblings. There have been a few quite drastic changes in the last month that are going to impact the dynamics of my life which as a result could have an effect on my blog from time to time.

Firstly, I quit my part time job of almost six years this month. This factor alone has been a huge deal for me as its been a part of my life since the tender age of sixteen. There were a lot of reasons for doing this but the main reason is that I felt that the time was appropriate to finally let go and move on to something new. I've watched many people, who have inevitably become my friends leave and I've also left behind friends too, but there comes a point when you have to do what is in the best interest for you.

Luckily I have had a goal in my mind for a while now and it was only a matter of time before I decided to give my part time job up to do what I have been wanting to do for the last god knows how many years: focus on a career. That career is exactly what I have been working towards, and for the last fortnight I have been away training to qualify as a Foot Health Practitioner. This has involved months of theory based learning and then hands on experience dealing with patients in a clinic.
The hard work does not stop there though as I am now faced with the task of setting my business up, but I am so excited and ready to dedicate my all into making this career successful for me. It feels like all I've done is study and to finally be out there and making a go at a career is completely liberating but also daunting too: I realise that with like all new ventures, this will take dedication, time and patience.
I guess that the reason I wanted to share this was for one, I hoped that this could be relatable to others who may also be at a stage in their life with an odd transitional period, of life as you knew it to life on the brink of a big change. Also I thought that it would be good for me to reflect back at this stage of my life down the line and see what I have managed to achieve.
So what does this mean for my blog? Well one of the reasons that I wanted to embark on this career was because it enables me to work for myself and so I have every intention of carrying on with this blog because I have enjoyed doing it so much. Blogging again has reminded me just how much I love writing - I kind of feel like myself when I'm pouring words out (in most cases just bloody well rambling on to myself and boring you in the process I would imagine!)
And by the way this leads me on to saying how much I appreciate anyone who takes the time to even look at my blog - thank you! I can't deny that some weeks may be a little quiter while I have these new priorities arising but you know what, everyone has those moments and so at least if things seem absent its only because of that reason and not because I'm stopping! Hopefully this update has cleared up a few things that I may have seemed a bit hush hush about in recent posts.
Apologies for the long post - not my usual style but this was sort of just a one off that I felt should be shared x 

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Soap & Glory Orangeasm Body Wash

Today I'm going to be running through a quick 'first impressions' type of review and that is on the new Soap & Glory Orangeasm body wash. I literally just picked this up in Boots yesterday, so I only had a chance to use it last night and then again in the shower this morning but I knew I wanted to do a quick post as there has been a lot of hype surrounding the new range from S&G - and rightly so! The Orangeasm range has introduced three new S&G products including this plus a body butter and a fragrance mist.

I'm a huge sucker for orange fragrant bathing products so when I discovered these new releases I was at Boots before you could say orangeasm. I love S&G body washes so I knew that this would find its way into my life, however the body butter I was a bit indifferent about so I gave it a miss and stuck with just the one item. I thought that the body butter smelt a little overpowering and while I like the smell of orange I'd rather not smell like one all day. This body wash is right up my street though! In true S&G fashion the consistency is slightly creamy which glides across the skin for an indulgent fruity shower experience, that will have you 'mmming' and 'ahhing' meaning that the title Orangeasm does deliver its promise....

For an even more orangeasmic experience I would recommend putting a small pump of this onto a bath lily to create oh, so many fruity and foamy bubbles. This is going to be perfect in the mornings to wake me up as the smell is so energising. However the good thing about this in my opinion, is that the smell doesn't linger on your skin, once your towelled dry and popped your clothes it just leaves a fresh aroma on the skin. All in all this little lovely is a perfect shower addition in the run up to summer.

Have you tried Orangeasm yet? What are your favourite S&G products?

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

What's In My Travel Makeup Bag

It feels like its been a while since I last blogged, so I took advantage of a light afternoon to take some pictures for today's post, which as you may have noticed from the title is the What's In My Travel Makeup Bag tag. I've been away training for the last fortnight hence the need for my travel makeup bag. This is a handmade makeup bag that I found on Etsy a few months ago and I just adore how pretty it is and it also fits in a fair amount of items too! Because it was a work related trip most of the makeup featured was basically everyday bits and bobs, I hope you enjoy the post!

For face products I tried to keep it very simple while I was away purely for ease and quickness every morning. Inside the little sample pot I just squeezed some Benefit The Porefessional inside instead of carrying the whole tube with me, and to cover up any blemishes I used my Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer which I think is beginning to run out as its a little on the sparse side lately. I use my Real Techniques Buffing Brush to do my concealer. To set that I use my bareMinerals Touch Up Veil.

Afterwards for a little colour I take Hoola by Benefit to bronze my face which I own the handly little travel size version. A lovely everyday blush I have been enjoying is a minerealize one from MAC in Dainty, it has a very nice delicate glowy effect to it. I also threw in my MAC Soft and Gentle highlighter but because the blush was already quite glowy I only ended up using it a couple of times so it was a bit of a waste of space. To apply these I was using my RT Multi Task brush which is part of a travel set.

Moving on to eyes, I depotted some of MAC Painterly paint pot into a sample container again to save me having to transport the whole thing which is a little heavy and robust as it is in a glass jar. This works amazingly as a neutral base for the rest of my eyeshadow. I wanted to keep my brows quick and simple so took my Rimmel brow pencil, which I'm not crazy for but as it has a spooile it was quite handy for travelling with. I left most of the work to Benefit Gimme Brow to set everything into place.

 For my eyes I simply went for my Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette - an item I just adore and is probably one of the bests palettes for travelling due to its size and range of colours that can create an array of looks. Most days I was taking W.O.S all over the lid with Naked 2 blended lightly into the creases.

My favourite mascara at the moment I luckily have in a Mini size as I tried the sample out before buying the whole thing and that is Bad Gal lash from Benefit. And lastly I took a couple of MAC lipsticks that I would both deem as 'nudes' and they are Angel, the lighter option which is a pretty light pink in a frost finish and for days when I wanted a little more of a sheen I opted for Syrup which is a muted plum colour in a lustre finish.

I was pretty happy with all of these choices as they all achieved a quick and easy every day look for while I was away doing my training. On saying that I was really happy the day I got home to play around with some more vibrant makeup pieces!
What do you take in your travel makeup bag?

Friday, 11 April 2014

MAC | Impassioned Lipstick


This lipstick from MAC has been on my wishlist ever since I became hooked on them. I have probably mentioned before that I prefer wearing statement lips and Impassioned is definitely now up there in the more daring choices of my collection. I was lucky enough to win this in Katie's  100 follower giveaway which was very exciting so a big thank you to Katie again! I do very much enjoy discovering new blogs to read so be sure to go and give hers a follow if you aren't already.

Impassioned is an amplified lipstick meaning that the colour pay off is absolutely incredible, what you see in the bullet is basically going to transfer on to the lips. Amplified formulas are probably my favourite of the Mac line because of their creamy application also making them very comfortable to wear, and just the pigmentation you get with an amplified lipstick is unbeatable in my opinion. Of course Impassioned is no exception to that rule and  as a result of its finish you won't need to do much building up to get an opaque coverage.

What stands out most about Impassioned is its colour - I don't really own anything similar. I would describe it as a vibrant pinky coral - something about this shade has me thinking sort of like flamingo pink, maybe a bit of an odd comparison there I don't know? I find that because I'm blonde I have to be careful with the sort of pinks I wear - I own Snob and everytime I wear it it looks as though I'm going for the Barbie look, which just doesn't really work for me. Thankfully Impassioned is a perfect pink (got to love those hints of coral) and it is another lipstick that makes me excited for Spring. This might be deemed a bit of a vibrant choice for everyday wear but I just think Impassioned is going to look so stunning on a bright sunny day and I can't wait to start showing this off!
Have you tried Impassioned by Mac? What are some of your Spring lipstick favourites?

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

A Beauty Blogger's Spring Essentials

Daffodils, Easter eggs, longer days and hopefully some nicer weather. Yes Spring has officially sprung in the UK and now that it has arrived I have decided to do a post focusing on some of the must-have beauty essentials of the moment plus I've thrown in a few miscellaneous ones for good measures. I hope that you will enjoy the post :)

Its not called Spring Cleaning for nothing! Get freshened up in the mornings with something that is lightly fragrant while still leaving you feeling squeaky clean for the rest of the day, something like this Cath Kidston Rose soap is perfect for this time of the year. Opt for a moisturiser that is going to
revitalise your skin without being too heavy or 'sticky' such as the Vaseline Aloe Fresh moisturiser.
This does wonders for all skin types and is also super affordable and accessible - you'll find this everywhere from your nearest chemist to local supermarket.

With the weather gradually becoming nicer the sandals at the back of your wardrobe will be making an appearance in the not too distant future, which means its time to get those tootsies looking in tip top condition. I've been using Soap & Glory's Heel Genius after showering, I apply a small amount to the heel of my foot and any other areas that the skin is a little harder and stick some socks straight on once I'm done. You can be more generous with this in the evenings but you don't want to be too moisturised during the day when you're going to be on the go as you could end up with feet that become rather hot and sweaty. Then depending on how much time you've got in the morning, a great nail varnish for Spring is the Barry M Gelly Paint in Lychee that looks lovely as either a DIY pedicure or maincure. I saw my friend Camilla review this on her blog and it reminded me that I had this hidden away from last year.

Back to skincare once again, as before you will want to pick a moisturiser for your face that is lightweight and going to make your skin look fresh and springy. A good option is the Origins GinZing moisturiser, it is very gel like and will awaken you early on in the day. Hopefully if you've looked after your lips during the winter months they shouldn't need too much TLC now its Spring, just a nice balm that will keep them soft and desirable. My favourite go-to lip balm is from Burt's Bees but I couldn't find it at the time, so Chapstick does exactly the same job and the apple one smells pleasant too.

From day to day its obviously nice to change your makeup looks up, but I thought I would include a couple of definite Spring must have makeup items. The first is a cream eyeshadow, the Bourjois Colour Edition 24H was a recommendation from Vivianna Does Makeup its extremely easy to apply you don't even need a brush and it still creates a very subtle seamless eye look. As for a flush of colour I don't think that you can go wrong with a pinky/peachy blush at this time of the year for a healthy, vibrant glow. A great one for spring is this from Dior in Passion Fruit, which comes with two tones in the pan a lighter and darker peach which can either be swirled on the brush together or used seperately to create slightly different looks.

Finish off with a spritz of something fresh to keep you smelling sweet all day. A recent discovery for me is Vera Wang Princess a girly perfume that sort of reminds me of vanilla - this is surprisingly long wearing too as it seems to last on the skin for hours. For the more adventurous, Gucci Envy Me is a very floral and energetic scent, you don't need to put a lot of this in as it can initially come across quite powerful but once the day goes on this also lingers on the skin for a pretty feminie aroma. Another scent that is perfect for spring is the Victoria's Secret Pure Seduction body mist as its very fruity and sweet, due to it being a mist it isn't at all over powering which is ideal for those who like a light fragrance for on the go bursts of freshness.

If you're feeling particularly spring-like, why not add a pretty hair accessory to your 'do to brighten things up? I love this flowery bun crown from Primark. And lastly, if you can't enjoy a chocolate lollipop with Easter round the corner well I don't know when you can!

Now, let Spring commence!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Sunday Catchup #2

I can't believe an entire week has passed since I was writing my last Sunday catchup post. I've had such an overwhelming week away, busy doing my clinical training. If stuff has seemed a little absent on the blog front this has been the only reason why. After battling the dreaded M25 Friday evening I've been thankful to spend the weekend back home (while squeezing in many pug kisses and a Breaking Bad episode, naturally) However its back on the road again tonight as I have to be ready in the clinic again on Monday morning for another full week of hands on training.

Rather than make this seem a little disjointed I will write a full update when I come home at some point in the next little while. I have two fun posts scheduled for the upcoming week, so be sure to follow me on Twitter for updates on those!

Plus on the blog this week:
Monthly Favourites | March 2014
MAC Painterly Paint Pot

How was your week? x

Friday, 4 April 2014

MAC Painterly Paint Pot


Painterly Pro Longwear Paint Pot | MAC | £15 | Link

After watching copious YouTube makeup tutorials there was one thing that kept  cropping up that was a world unknown to me and that was MAC paint pots. It was only a matter of time before my curiosity got the better of me and I would find myself at the eyeshadow counter at my local department store pondering all the different options. Rewind to last month, I was researching up online reading review after review, and decided Painterly would be best for me as I am a neutral eyeshadow loving girl.
Mac paint pots as you see come in a rather luxurious 5g glass pot and the traditional Mac styled chic black lid. The packaging is everything you would expect for the price you pay. Paint pots currently retail at £15 meaning that they are not the cheapest cream eyeshadows on the market. But everything about this paint pot has me assured that for the product you get it is worth the extra pennies. As for the colour, described by Mac as 'nude beige' I find that it works brilliantly for me and I can use this in two ways either on its own on those 'no makeup makeup' kind of days or to create a smooth canvas as an eyeshadow base. Since using this as a base I have noticed that my eye makeup lasts so much longer and the shades hold their vibrancy without showing signs of wearing off. But I also have really enjoyed using this alone to correct any discolouring and make it seem like I have naturally seamless eyelids.
The formula of the product is initially creamy when you apply it with your finger but it rapidly hardens to become dry meaning that you have to work quickly. This leads me on to my one and only grumble about this, which is that I am concerned how long this will last before drying up in the pot and result in wasted product. Although I am impressed at how far the product seems to go - I've used it weeks now and barely even made a noticeable dent in the very top layer in the pot, it worries me that this could suddenly dry up. I suppose the fact that my experience with cream eyeshadows is little to none hence my uncertainty of understanding their life expectancy. I know that the only true test for this quandary will be time so I will have to update back on this!

Despite my worry that this paint pot is going to dry up on me, I have loved having this as an addition in my makeup routine. Its literally been used every single day since purchase and I am confident that it will continue to be used. Mac Painterly has honestly done a pretty amazing job at correcting discolouring and generally enhancing my eye makeup to make it last vibrantly for
Do you use cream eyeshadow? Have you tried any of Mac's Paint Pots?