Thursday, 31 July 2014

July Favourites

I really enjoyed sharing my favourites last month so I thought I'd share favourites again this month! These are all products I've spoken about in the past but they've been real staples in my makeup diet this month. 

First up is the Natural Eyes palette from Too Faced, I actually recently put up a full review of this palette but it's just far exceeded my expectations. I've bought a lot of palettes in the past that have been hyped up. Whilst they've been good, they haven't been wowed, whereas this palette has just amazed me! Buttery shadows, great pigmentation, amazing colours, need I say more?

The Maybelline SuperStay Better Skin Foundation is a new release from Maybelline. They claim that it fights the visible effects of stress including bumbs, dullness and redness. I've really been enjoying using it, it really buffs into the skin and leaves a really nice finish. 

I've recently rediscovered the Illamasqua nail polish in Speckle, it's just a lovely polish and I've worn it quite a lot this month! If you bought one of the Imperfection polishes dig it out, you'll fall in love all over again!

Last but not least is the Aussie Dual Personality Curl Definition and Soft Feel Serum. If you have curly hair TRY THIS. You will not be disappointed, this creates curls effortlessly! It doesn't leave your hair greasy and works on both wet and dry hair. I love this!

What did you love in July?

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Weekly Roundup #10

Hello! Welcome back to another ‘weekly roundup’ I hope you’ve had a great week. This last week was pretty exhausting! It was fairly busy, on Wednesday I had to leave work a little early to nip to the doctors. It was just a flying visit but of course they were running late as usual. We went straight from the doctors to Daytona MK, as Chris had booked an evening of Go Karting. I grabbed my Costa Latte Cooler (I told you I was addicted last week) and sat by the sidelines. I took lots of video and a few pictures, which I hope to edit into a bit of a film at some point.

On Thursday we had a ‘graduate orientation day’ at work, basically all the new graduates visit work for the day. They get breakfast, a BBQ lunch and an afternoon of Go Karting laid on for them. It’s my job to capture these kinds of events, so I went along to take pictures and video. The heat was blistering, although I managed to not burn my skin, I noticed in the mirror this morning that my scalp is a bit red!

Friday was a rather relaxed day at work, although the temperature was sky high again! When the weekend came around I had one plan and one plan only; SLEEP. I just felt knackered. 2 weeks of commuting 4 hours a day really takes it’s toll, so I’m happy that’s over. Chris and I were in bed by 10pm on Friday night and we slept through until about 8, it was blissful!

I didn’t really get that much sleep though for the rest of the weekend if I’m honest. On Saturday I had a lazy morning and then headed into town to run some errands. I had some returns to make and I also went into Boots. I didn’t go mad though, I just used two of my No7 vouchers to pick up two makeup items! We had tacos and fajitas for dinner, I think this is possibly one of my favourite meals!

On Sunday we got up early and headed over to a local shopping center! I had hoped to find a cropped cardigan and a few other bits but I was fairly unsuccessful. I did however pick up two flower headbands, I was talked into it by Chris’ little sister! They are super cute, I’ll definitely wear them on holiday but will need to pluck up the courage to wear them to work! We spent 3 hours of the afternoon cleaning a very moldy gas BBQ, in the hope of having a BBQ in the sun. However, it turned a bit cloudy and cold which annoyed us no end!

Back at work this week we’re preparing for a big event. Next week is our Annual Partner Meeting, there is a lot to get ready. I’ll be staying in Cambridge for the week which is always really pretty, they sun always seems to shine!

How has your week been so far?


Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Models Own Boogie Nights

Glitter is for life not just for Christmas folks! I do love a bit of glitter, I cannot resist a bit of glitter no matter the time of year. I hope I'm not alone! 

This is the beautiful Models Own polish in the shade 'Boogie Nights'. It's from the Mirrorball Collection, which Models Own describe as a range of 'nail frostings'. Purple glitter is a rarity in my collection, I have lots of silver, pink and blue glitter, but this is possibly the first purple I have in my collection. 

This is a super easy glitter which applies like a dream, you don't have to fish out the glitter, it's easy to get a really nice coverage. The swatch shows one coat on the left and two coats on the right, so it's buildable too! It's quite versatile, you can wear it alone or on top of coloured polishes so you can get a whole host of different looks. 

Models Own Boogie Nights costs £5 and is available on the Models Own website here.


Monday, 28 July 2014

July Empties

July was a good month for empties, lots of things have come to an end. Makes a great blog post, but not so great for my bank balance because I need to replace most of them! I'm going to jump straight in to the products:

Garnier Ultimate Blends - The Sleek Restorer Shampoo & Conditioner
I really loved using this shampoo and conditioner range, they are so cheap and the quality surpasses the price point. They are fantastic, they didn't leave my hair frizzy and they were really conditioning.
Repurchase? Yes, I have some different products to try out first but definitely in the future!

Mark Hill Big Volume Shampoo
Another shampoo, this time from Mark Hill! This is actually a shampoo I'd started and then never finished, so I just had a little bit in the bottle to finish up. This is another great brand and this shampoo really packs in the volume. 
Repurchase? Maybe, I really loved this shampoo at the time, but I think I've found brands that I prefer!

Vaseline Spray and Go Moisturiser
I was gutted when this moisturiser when I finished this, I am in love with this moisturiser! It's just so simple to use and it's so effective.
Repurchase? Yes 100% this is being replaced ASAP!

LOreal Lumi Magique Concealer
I love this concealer and I was surprised how long it lasted. It didn't give me a huge amount of coverage, but it is fantastic for brightening under eye circles.
Repurchase? Yes, I definitely want to try some other products first but I think this will be a staple in my makeup for ages!

Garnier Pure Active Moisturiser
The Garnier Pure Active range of moisturisers is incredible, they are priced so well and are really affordable. I actually have repurchased this range probably 15 times, it's fantastic. It tackles spots and my skin normally looks pretty good.
Repurchase? Yes, probably forever!

No7 Beautiful Skin Radiance Exfoliator
I'm still yet to find a cleanser that I really love and am loyal too. This is one I've just tried along the way. It's okay, it didn't blow me away. I didn't feel like I'd was giving my skin a very deep clean, which is what I look for. 
Repurchase? No

Dr Bronners Magic Soap
I reviewed this not long ago and I'm a big fan of this! I use it to clean my makeup brushes and I really like it! 
Repurchase? Yes definitely, just need to find the best place to buy it!

Garnier Micellar Water 
This is my favourite micellar water, I think its better than Bioderma and the LOreal equivalent. It lasts such a long time, much longer than any others I've tried. I'm just really impressed, you can find a full review here.
Repurchase? Yes I already have, I cannot be without it!

Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation
This foundation is beautiful, it gives you such beautiful natural skin. It lasts well and it blends really well. 
Repurchase? Yes I definitely need to get this back in my makeup collection ASAP!

So there you have it, possibly my biggest empties post yet! What have you repurchased recently?


Sunday, 27 July 2014

Lemon Drizzle Cake | Recipe

Baking at the weekends is one of my favourite past times, I think it's super relaxing and also good fun. I thought it would be nice to share a recipe this morning and then you can spend your Sunday baking if it takes your fancy.

This is my Lemon Drizzle Cake recipe, the cake itself is packed with lemon flavour and is super moist! So if that tickles your fancy, head to the shop, grab some lemons and keep reading!

If you want to make the Lemon Drizzle Cake, you will need:
225g unsalted butter
225g caster sugar
225g self-raising flour
4 eggs
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

For the drizzle, you will also need:
The juice of 1 1/2 lemons
85g caster sugar

The Lemon Drizzle Cake is made by making a standard sponge recipe and adding in the lemon. First preheat your oven to 180 degrees.

 Beat together your butter and sugar until it goes creamy and then add in each egg one at a time. You need to mix each egg into the mixture slowly. Sift your flour and your lemon zest and fold into your mixture.

Line a square or loaf tin with greaseproof paper and pour in your mixture, make sure the mixture is nice and level, you can use a spoon to help you. Bake your cake for 45-50 mins until a skewer comes out clean.

 When the cake is cooked, take it out the oven and leave it on a cooling rack in the tin.
Mix your sugar and your lemon juice together to make the drizzle. Prick the warm cake all over with a skewer or fork, then pour the drizzle over the cake.

Cut your cake into squares, leave to cool and serve! 

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette

This eyeshadow palette was love at first sight. When I first saw it I knew I had to have it, I tried to resist but then all my favourite bloggers featured it and I needed it. I had a Look Fantastic voucher code and it just seemed like it was meant to be. This little beauty is the Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette. I've never been enticed to buy anything from Too Faced before, so this is my first Too Faced product. 

The Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette comes in a cardboard box and inside you have a beautiful metal casing with a stunning lace pattern design. It's quite a small palette and is compact and easy to travel with, but the eyeshadows come in a really good size.

The eyeshadows are all individually named and have quite cool names. The eyeshadow palette actually has nine shades and is split into three looks 'Day' 'Classic' and 'Fashion'. In the 'Day' section you have Heaven, Cashmere Bunny and Sexspresso. In the 'Classic' section you have Silk Teddy, Push-Up and Erotica. Finally in the 'Fashion' section there is Nude, Honey Pot and Chocolate Martini.

I honestly don't know why it's taken me so long to dry Too Faced because these eyeshadows are incredible. They have a beautiful buttery texture, the colours are beautiful, the pigmentation is incredible and they blend so well. I've used it every single day since I opened the box and I cannot put it down.

The palette is priced at £32 and is available at a whole host of places. Let me tell you, this palette is 100% worth the money. I'm more impressed with this than with my Naked 3 palette and that's saying something. I'm utterly in love!

Friday, 25 July 2014

Matalan Home Wish List

A place I haven't shopped in for a long time is Matalan. When I lived in Southampton there was a store in the city center and I'd pass it every day when I went to University, but now they are much harder to get to. I happened to be home shopping the other day and stumbled along the Matalan website, I instantly fell in love with a lot of lovely items!

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

I've been looking for something nautical to go in our bathroom as a cute little touch, and I happen to think this little boat (1) is really sweet! I'm also loving these little fish (2), they are only £5 but are just lovely. I'm a bit obsessed with nautical bathroom accessories at the moment, I definitely think something will make it's way into our home! A lot of our walls are decorated with quite prominent or bold colours, so I've been looking to white accessories. I'm eager to get some really nice photoframes and I love this multi shape rectangle one (3) a lovely way to fit pictures in tight spaces. I definitely do not need any more candle holders or lanterns, but this little lantern with bird cut outs (4) pulls at my heart strings!

You can't see it here but the jug has the sweetest little bumble bee details (5), such a perfect summer touch! I can just imagine the metal house lantern (6) in any room in my house, it's so versatile and so me! The Home Sweet Home sign (7) just makes the perfect finishing touch to any room, it's so cheap too! 

What is your favourite item here? What is your favourite home shop?

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Tanya Burr Penguin Chic

The name, the colour, the bottle; I think I love everything about this little nail polish! This is my third nail polish from Tanya Burr’s cosmetic line, called the uber cute ‘Penguin Chic’. It’s a beautiful grey colour, which is completely different to anything I own, and I have a lot of nail polishes! The nail polish comes in a beautiful simple square bottle, which has a black lid and a simple autograph on the front.

I’ve wanted this nail polish since it first launched, so I wasted no time trying it out! It took me a couple of coats to get the colour looking how I wanted it too. The first coat isn’t very opaque and a little bit blotchy in appearance. However, 2 or 3 coats gives you a lovely opaque colour. The polishes are really glossy in appearance and dry very quickly, they have everything I look for in a polish!

These polishes were exclusive to Feel Unique for a little while, but you can now get them from a lot of different places, including Superdrug and Look Fantastic!


Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Weekly Roundup #9

Another week has passed and another wednesday has begun so its time for another weekly roundup.

I'll start with the obvious thing this week; the heat. Holy moly, hasn't it just been ridiculous! I know most people are a big fan of the summer sun, but when it gets this hot I struggle. I've actually been commuting to work this last week and it's actually been 32 degrees on the train. It's not comfortable, that's for sure! It's been so warm that I've swapped my hot coffee in the mornings for cold iced lattes, so dreamy. My favourite this summer is Costa's Caramel Latte, it's just like a coffee smoothie, delicious!

This weekend Chris' mum and dad celebrated their 28th anniversary so we cooked a bit of a celebration meal. We had steak skewers to start, slow cooked lamb shank for main and then a blackberry and lemon fool for dessert. I took lots of pictures, so I'll be sharing the recipes here soon! On Sunday I headed for a quick coffee date with my friend Amber, I had one of my Costa coolers and we chatted lots. 

My skin has been desperate for some TLC this week, it doesn't like the heat! So I took the opportunity on Sunday morning to do a face mask! I love the Origins Clear Improvements Mask. I also gave my brushes a much needed clear, the good thing about this weather is that the brushes dry really quickly! I also repainted my nails with Essie's Lilacism, I just love this colour, it's so beautiful! It's a stunning pastel purple so it's fabulous in the summertime. 

This week I shared my top five favourite mint nail polishes. I cannot get enough of mint this summer and I'm gathering quite a collection. I also shared a Glossybox review, a Blueberry Muffin recipe and wrote about my 'forgotten essentials'. We all have products we use everyday but forget to blog about, so I took my chance to sing the praises of my essentials. If you're heading to Sephora anytime soon, I also shared my review of the Tarte Airblush Maracuja Blush which is a stunning cream blusher!

That's all for this week? Have you had a good week? Do you like the hot weather?


Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Bite Me | Sewlomax

After winning the Sewlomax Makeup Bag earlier this year I fell head over heels for the brand. I found myself browsing the website and making a mental note of everything I wanted to add to my collection. Before I knew it I had quite a list of things I fancied, everything was just too cute and right up my street. With my spending being on a  restricted diet, I was doing well resisting all the things I wanted. However, when I saw Emma tweet about the Sewlomax sale, I couldn't wait any longer. I headed to the website and was overjoyed that the 'Bite Me' tea towels had been reduced in the sale to a tiny £2 from £5. I picked up two and they arrived super quickly, wrapped in the beautiful Sewlomax tissue paper. 

The tea towels are such good quality, the fabric is really thick and the hand stitched embroidery is just stunning. I know these tea towels are going to look beautiful in my new kitchen when it's finished. Now I just need to convince myself to use them, they are just too pretty to get dirty!

If you fancy treating yourself to a Sewlomax piece, you can check out Emma's website or head to her Not On The High Street Shop!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Stars & Stripes | Glossybox July 2014

The Stars and Stripes Glossybox is the July 2014 box for the UK. Boasting four sized items and one sample product from 'across the pond'. The products came in a fetching limited edition box, covered in stars and stripes, with the cardboard menu, but no magazine this month? I'm not sure if they've stopped doing the magazine and I missed the menu, or if my box got missed. Inside the box I received:

Perfecting Eyeshadow Primer by Absolute New York
Glossybox say this is a super creamy and oil free formula. I love trying out eyeshadow primers so I'll definitely try it out. It's even fragrance free which is good!

Carmex Lip Balm Pot
This product is no secret to us UK folk as it's readily available here, yet I've never tried it out. Carmex claim it's the pharmacist's #1 recommended lip balm for over 10 years. It aims to give long lasting relief for dry and chapped lips. I'll definitely be trying this out too!

Color Club Glossy Seal Nail Polish
We all know I love a good nail polish. This colour is exclusive to Glossybox and it's actually a really nice shade. I have a thing for blue shades so I can't wait to try it, I'm sure it will feature in a NOTD soon enough!

Bellapierre Mineral Lipstick 'Mandarina'
I know a lot of people were excited by the lipstick in this months Glossybox. In all fairness it's a full sized product retailing £20, but lipstick doesn't really rock my socks. Especially when it's bright orange, I can't rock this shade! 

Pur Dirty Girl Detoxifying Mudd Masque
If there is one thing I love it's a good face mask, especially a clay mask! I will definitely be giving this a go in the near future. My skin is really greasy and oily in this heat, so it needs all the help it can get.

When you break down the contents of the box, it's actually fairly good. I was not blown away when I first opened it, but I'll make good use out of the majority of the products. There's nothing worse than paying for something you can't even use! Hopefully I'll have some reviews of these products soon!


Sunday, 20 July 2014

Mint Summer Shades

If there is one colour that seems to capture my attention this year, it's mint green! If it's not on my nails, it's on the walls in our home, we've got mint in our kitchen and one of our bathrooms. It's safe to say I'm a little bit obsessed. I've gathered quite a collection of mint nail polishes that I've been using on rotation, so I thought I'd share them with you! There's something very therapeutic about having them all swatched, so I've put them all next to each other on a nail wheel for you to compare. Let me give you the run down: (I'm moving from left to right in both pictures)

First up is Models Own Magpie Green, it's one of the Models Own Speckled Egg Collection which was released at Easter Time. I actually won the whole collection from Superdrug, but this is my absolute favourite. The speckles just add that extra dimension to your nail colour and it looks like mini eggs, what could be better? I'm not normally a big fan of Models Own's formulation, but I am a big fan of the Speckled Egg collection. It applies really nicely and dries quickly.

I picked up Sinful Colors Mint Apple in the US when I visited in March. It is actually very close to the colour of a real green apple when you compare it to all the other shades. It has a very subtle shimmer in it, so it's perfect if you like a bit of a glitter. This polish couldn't be anymore of a bargain if it tried. It's an incredible formula and the quality is miles above the £2 price point.

Breakfast in Bed by Rimmel was released as part of their collaboration with Rita Ora. It's one beautiful colour, if you look closely, you'll notice how close it is to Essie's Mint Candy Apple. However up close it does have a bit of a shimmer in it which the Essie shade doesn't have. However it does fall short on the formula, in fact the formula is the worst of all these shades. It's streaky and it's very difficult to work with, you need a few coats to be happy with the finish.

Essie Mint Candy Apple is the fourth swatch on the wheel and I think it's my favourite of the five. It deserves all the hype it has and it's just beautiful, well worth £7.99 and it's just lovely. The formula is very good too, it's hard to make light work of a pastel formula but Essie do, I LOVE this polish.

Last on the list is Bourjois Green Fizz and it's something for the sisters who like a it of a brighter shade on the nails. It's a beautiful lime green shade which looks incredible with a tan (not that I ever tan!) If you like neon shades you'll love this, it's got such a beautiful high shine finish and the brush is just a dream to use.

What is your favourite mint green nail polish shade?


Saturday, 19 July 2014

Recipe: Blueberry Muffins

Today I'm sharing my recipe for these beautiful blueberry muffins! 

A couple of weeks ago I had a request from Chris to make some muffins! I normally make cherry muffins, but I've been loving blueberries recently so decided to try something new. I actually just used my normal recipe for muffins and adapted it to add the blueberries. To make these beautiful Blueberry Muffins, you will need;

175g Margarine 

175g Caster Sugar
3 Eggs
300g Self Raising Flour
150ml Milk
1 teaspoon of Baking Powder

In order to make the muffins you just use the standard creaming method that you use to make sponge cakes. Cream the sugar and margarine together, and whip in one egg at a time. Add in the milk and then sift in the flour and baking powder. I then spoon half the mixture into 12 cases and add some blueberries, roughly 3 per case. I then spoon the rest of the mixture on top of the blueberries and add 2 more blueberries on the top! This just ensures you get an equal amount of blueberries per muffin!

Cook for 20 minutes at 165 degrees and voila! Amazing muffins! 


Friday, 18 July 2014

Everyday Essentials

Sometimes it’s really easy to forget your everyday essentials. Those items we tend to take for granted, we use them everyday but we’ve never really declared our love for them publically! Today I thought I’d share with you all my everyday essentials, maybe you use them too!

First up are Boots Cotton Pads, now this one sounds a bit uneventful, but if you’ve ever used Superdrug’s cotton pads, you’ll know why. Boots Cotton Pads are a really good size, they are easy to use, they don’t fall apart and they are super soft! I once tried some from Superdrug and they were awful, really scratchy and not very nice to use. I’m not loyal to any particular cotton pad from Boots, I think they are all fantastic and are all really good quality!

Also from Boots are these Makeup Remover Cotton Buds, inside of the standard cotton buds these are shaped for removing makeup mistakes. You get a flat tennis racket shaped side and a pointed side; they are fantastic for mascara emergencies!

I don’t tie up my hair regularly, but when I do I love the Invisibobble hair ties. They are so simple but they are so effective! They don’t crease your hair but still keep your hair tied up nicely.

The HD Brows Tweezers are quite possibly my favourite thing I’ve ever received in a Glossybox, they are definitely the thing I’ve used the most! These tweezers are just incredible, they provide almost painless hair remover and pinpoint precision, what more could you ask for?

I never knew the value of a decent cuticle pusher until my sister (a qualified beautician) gave me one of hers. I just had one that I’d had for years and it was old and knackered, but a brand new one revolutionized my nailcare routine. Sounds silly and simple, but it’s true!

Last up are these little hair clips, I just get them from eBay for next to nothing, but I use them everyday when I do my makeup.

What everyday essentials do you have? I’d love to hear all about them!

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