Wednesday, 30 December 2015

All the sparkle you need...

Whether you’re off out to fancy party tomorrow, having dinner with friends or just staying cosy at home; I think New Years Eve always deserves a little bit of sparkle. So today, I thought I’d share a blog post with some of my most favourite products for adding sparkle to your New Years celebrations.



Lets start with nails and I just had to share this beautiful polish from Essie. ‘Sparkle On Top’ has been in my collection for a little while now; it’s a really simple, pretty and elegant glitter option. The polish is packed with luminescent and holographic sparkle. It looks beautiful layered over lighter pastel shades, but equally pretty with darker hues too.

Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Furore
If there is one product that always gets used at this time of year, it’s this beautiful Pure Pigment from Illamasqua. It’s a lovely champagne colour so you can use it in loads of different ways. You can use it as a eyeshadow, which gives a very pretty sparkle to the eyes. You can also use it under the brow bone, or on your cheekbones as a highlighter. I’ve had this little pot for ages and I can already see this little pot of sparkle will last forever.

Glitter Rush in Snow Globe & Desert Bronze
A cheaper glitter alternative is the Glitter Rush pots from Barry M. They are a fabulous multi-purpose product and the perfect solution for adding glitter to any look. You can apply the glitter to your face or your body and they come in a really handy shaker pot, which makes application really simple. Glitter Rush is available in two different shades; Snow Globe (silver glitter) & Desert Bronze (bronze/copper glitter). 



If you want a pretty eyeshadow look, but you don’t want the actual glitter or sparkle, this one is for you! There's nothing I enjoy more than sweeping bronze tones onto my eyes and the Bourjois Color Edition Eyeshadow in the shade Or Desir makes it so easy. It's an incredible bronze shade and it looks amazing on it's own, or layered with other products.

I cannot stop talking about this gorgeous highlighter from ABH and I’m sure it’s going to be in a lot of different blog posts for a while yet. This is Riviera Illuminator and it’s as pretty on the skin as it looks in the compact. The formula is to die for, as the highlighter blends into skin effortlessly, just leaving a very pretty glow wherever you need it. The powder has no glitter in it, so you just get the most gorgeous glow, without the glitter flecks falling on to your cheeks.

If you want to give your skin a really glowing finish, MAC Soft & Gentle is perfect! It’s a baked powder, which has a really pretty marbled effect in the compact. What is great about this, is that you can use it directly as a highlighter, but it’s also great all over the face! If you want something that gives you the same effect, but on a smaller budget, try Glow All Out by Soap & Glory.

I’d love to hear about your favourite products for adding a bit of sparkle, I need some shopping inspiration! 
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Thursday, 24 December 2015

Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year



I wanted to take the opportunity to wish all my lovely readers, brands, friends and colleagues a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. This year has been a bit of a whirlwind (I’m not sure where it went) but I’ve loved every second. This year I celebrated four years of Hope, Freedom, Love and it really is my happy place on the Internet. When life gets a bit rough, or work gets a bit too much, I love that I can come here and write about eyeshadow palettes and pretty nail polish.

I hope you all have the most beautiful festive break, filled with love and happy memories. I’ll be taking a short break here for a few days, but I have a blog post coming next week, which will give you all the sparkle you need for New Years Eve. Don’t fear - I’ll be back with more beauty news, reviews and collaborations in the New Year (including Budget Beauty Week and Best In British Week)!

I can only hope that all your love, support, loyalty and comments will continue in 2016! There is a lot of exciting stuff in store and my daily musings will keep on coming. Thanks for making Hope, Freedom, Love what it is! 

Stephanie x 
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Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The Cult Setting Powder From Hourglass

Despite caving to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushers, I've managed to avoid trying the Ambient Lighting Powders until now. I was stood in Sephora, with 'The Ambient Lighting Edit' from Hourglass in my hand, battling my inner demons, convincing myself that I did not need it. As I put it back on the shelf, I noticed this super cute, miniature version of 'Dim Light'. I rejoiced, because $22 was much more attractive than the $80 alternative.

The Ambient Lighting Powders took the beauty world by storm when they launched. They were marked as the 'groundbreaking beautifier', taking finishing powders to a whole other level. The Ambient Lighting Powder aims to diffuse and soften any harsh glares, to ensure that you get flattering light on your face, whatever the location. What is weird about these powders, is that you can't really see anything when you apply them. It's only when you catch a reflection of yourself in the bathroom or a mirror, that you really see them spring to life. 

The Ambient Lighting Powders come packaged in the classic Hourglass packaging. The compact, is a reflective bronze shade with the simple Hourglass logo in the bottom corner. The compact is sturdy and reliable, so you do not have to worry about traveling with these. Inside the compact you reveal the product and a handy mirror, which makes on-the-go application simple.

I expected that the powder would have a lot of fallout, but this really is not the case. You can swish your brush around as much as you like, without making a mess. I use the Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light, all over my face as the last step in my makeup routine, replacing my normal setting powder. I did worry that I would lose the staying power from my makeup that the Dermablend Setting Powder provides, but the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder definitely picked up the slack.

When I use the Ambient Lighting Powder, I notice that my complexion looks more radiant. It just adds a beautiful glow to my complexion, which is just what I need in these colder months when my skin needs a little lift. The Ambient Lighting Powders are definitely pricey, but this miniature is a great way to try the range. The product is free from parabens, talc, fragrance, nano-particles and gluten. You can pick up the miniature Dim Light Ambient Lighting Powder from Liberty, who have the exclusive, for £22 here
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Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Festive Puff Pastry Stars

As we start to wind down for the Christmas season, I wanted to share a little festive treat with you all. What I love about these Festive Puff Pastry Stars, is that they take really minimal effort, yet they are something a bit different! They give a little twist on your "classic mince pie" and they are sure to wow any guests you might have coming to visit. The Festive Puff Pastry Stars are simply two pieces of Puff Pastry, with some really yummy mincemeat sandwhiched in the middle. Of course you could go all out by making your own Puff Pastry, but if you're in a hurry, you only need three ingredients; some ready-to-roll puff pastry, Mincemeat and some icing sugar for dusting.

Whatever your pastry, simply grab a cutter - stars happen to be my favourite shape, but you could use anything. Cut out a star and lay it on some greaseproof paper, spoon on a teeny tiny amount of mincemeat and then lay a second star on top. You don't need to stick them together with milk, so there is no faffing needed at all! Pop your Festive Puff Pastry Stars in a preheated oven at 180 degrees and bake for 20 minutes (or until golden brown). Remove your stars from the oven and then dust them with icing sugar, for a snow-like finish. 

Enjoy these immediately... they are best served warm! 



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Monday, 21 December 2015

My Little Magic Box

I know I’m not alone in thinking that this is the best ‘My Little Box’ that I’ve seen. After a couple of boxes, which lacked the normal wow-factor, the ‘My Little Magic Box’ is here to impress! As you open the box, you are greeted with the usual artwork card, this time informing us that this is a ‘magic box’. If you download the app, you can watch your box come to life with the help of virtual reality technology. Next we have the return of the My Little Box magazine, leaving the poster format behind! 



Lets move on and talk about the beautiful contents inside the box! There are three lifestyle items and three very lovely beauty items. Under the magazine, we have a beautiful pair of Navy Hand Warmers, which are decorated with some glitter pieces. They don’t have fingers, so they are good when you’re on-the-go and perfect for those iPhone addicts out there. There’s also a little pot of Kusmi Tea, which I thought was a nice addition at this time of year. We’re enjoying trying different teas at the moment and the tin will make a nice storage box when it’s empty.

The best part of the box for me is the stunning Makeup Bag, which was hiding under the gloves. It’s a really lovely navy blue shade, decorated with some gold detailing. On one side there are illustrations of a perfume bottle, a nail polish and a lipstick. On the other side it’s covered with gold polka dots, which is a really nice touch. I know that this makeup bag is going to follow me all around the world, it’s really pretty.





Hiding inside the makeup bag, there are three beauty items! The first is a little Nail Polish Duo from ‘My Little Beauty’ – I’ve wanted the My Little Beauty team to create some nail polish products for ages! They come in a sweet little box and the shades are themed with navy blue and rose gold. Next up is the Rituals Touch of Happiness Body Cream, which smells divine! This is going straight in my drawer of travel essentials; it will be perfect for taking to Vegas. The last item in my box is the Too Faced Melted Lipstick. I’m actually not much of a lipstick fan (so I would have preferred the NARS blusher that was in some boxes) but this has had some really nice reviews. 

As I said at the beginning of this blog post, I’m really impressed with the contents of this box! The items inside the box are original and beautiful and there are some really nice brands included too! My Little Box is a subscription service costing £11 a month, plus £3.95 P&P. Check out the website here: mylittlebox.co.uk
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Sunday, 20 December 2015

The Regal Wardrobe | A Dream Palette from bareMinerals

I love that feeling when you are really glad that you splashed your cash on a product. Sometimes I'm definitely guilty of spending money on things that I later regret, or that don't deserve the hype. When I saw the bareMinerals collection for Christmas this year, my heart had a little flutter. I thought last years collection was special, but this was something on another scale. It really is phenomenal, I love it all from the packaging with the gold detailing, to the products inside the beautiful boxes. So when I wondering through Heathrow airport, there was no doubt that I was going to pay a visit to the bareMinerals counter.




Weirdly, before my trip to the bareMinerals counter, I had not even spotted 'The Regal Wardrobe' (£35 here). However, as soon as I saw it I knew it would be coming home with me. The Regal Wardrobe comes in a stunning white box, which is decorated with gold detailing. Inside the box, there is a really elegant palette, it's a gorgeous red-wine colour, also with gold detailing. Inside the palette itself, you get eight eyeshadows, two blushers, a bronzer and an Luminizer.

What really drew me in to The Regal Wardrobe was the range of stunning purple tone eyeshadows, which happen to be my latest weakness. Since discovering that purple eyeshadows are a great match for my green eyes, I've been a little relentless. The eight eyeshadows include the three purple shades (Romp, Flash and Regal), but there is also a range of browns (Cognac, Namaste and Treasure Hunt) plus a matte beige (Natural) and a white shade (500 Thread Count). The formula of these are incredible, they are really pigmented, they blend beautifully and they just look incredible on the eye (my boyfriend even noticed I was wearing "something new" which is very rare). 

The two blushers include The Love Letter, which is a lovely plum-pink shade and The Summer Fling which is more of a classic pink shade. The bronzer is the shade The Skinny Dip which is quite a dark shade, but it's actually not too pigmented, so it's easy to use. Lastly we have the Luminizer, in the shade The Brilliant Sunset, which again isn't particularly pigmented, but it's a very pretty colour.

All-in-all, I'm really impressed with this palette and it hasn't actually left my dressing table since I first used it. If I had one bad thing to say about it, I would just say that I wish it had plastic packaging. This would make the most perfect travel palette, if you could trust it to survive in your handbag. I would honest encourage you all to check it out if you have the chance, the quality, formula and presentation of this palette is phenomenal. 

The Regal Wardrobe retails for £35, which you can pick up from Escentual here.
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Saturday, 19 December 2015

Discovering 'Jade' | Christmas By Yardley London

The countdown to Christmas is really on the final furlong now and we're nearing the end of my Christmas content here on Hope, Freedom, Love. Since November 15th I've been sharing the best gifts, releases, giveaways, but it's not over just yet. Today I wanted to share with you a bit more information on one of the products I featured in my Christmas Gift Guide.

Yardley London is one of those brands that I've seen around but I've never really had much exposure too. Originally know as the 'House of Yardley', the brand was born here in the UK in the mid-seventeenth century. The brand has had a pretty exciting and busy journey, from losing their shop in The Fire of London, to sponsoring Formula 1 teams, to catering the Royal Family with scents and products. In the past they've been seen as a bit of an old fashioned brand, but they actually had a bit of a vamp in 2014 to bring them into the 21st century. 

Every festive season, Yardley London launch a comprehensive gift range, which is bursting with products, to suit the needs of all your family and friends, no matter what there age and taste. As well as their classic bath and body range, this also have their "Signature Gift Collection" which is full of Limited Edition fragrance sets. In a beauty world which is over ran with tons of fragrance offerings, these sets offer fragrances that smell and look luxurious, without breaking the bank.



The Yardley London Jade Gift Set, retails for £19.99 and comes from retro inspiration. The scent aims to capture the spirit of the 1960's creating a fresh floral scent. The scent is floral but with a fruity note, paring notes of peach with bergamot, galbanum with rose, jasmine, ylang- ylang and orris, finishing with patchouli, sandalwood and moss. It is actually a really unoffensive scent, if you're not familiar with the notes, I would describe this to be just a very clean and refreshing scent. It's a fragrance that I think most women would like, young or old, so it's kind of a "safe bet" if you don't know what they normally go for.

Inside the green and white box, you get a 50ml bottle of the Jade Eau de Toilette, plus a 75ml tube of both the Jade Body Wash and Body Lotion. The gift set retails for £19.99, but it's actually on offer in quite a few places for £10 - making it a fabulous last minute gift.
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Friday, 18 December 2015

Fabulous free gift offer from MyDermaCenter

I'm here to tell you all about this amazing free gift offer from MyDermaCenter. If you've not heard of MyDermaCenter before, they are part of the L'OrĂ©al Group. They are an amazing online destination for tons of French Pharmacy products. They also happen to be the official online retailer for La Roche-Posay, Vichy, SkinCeuticals and Roger&Gallet; which happen to be some of my most favourite brands.



I actually only discovered MyDermaCenter very recently, but I'm incredibly impressed with the offers and gifts they have on the site. Today I wanted to tell you about the incredible FREE gift set from MyDermaCenter this Christmas! Inside the gorgeous box, which is decorated with triangles, you get four amazing sample sized products. I'm actually so chuffed to have this box in my life, as these products are going to be incredible for when I head to Vegas in the first week of January. The box includes some of the loved beauty favourites including; the brand new Vichy Idealia Skin Sleep (in a teeny tub which would be amazing for airplanes), the Roger & Gallet Fleur de Figuier Body Lotion, La Roche-Posays best-selling Effaclar Cleansing Gel and SkinCeutical’s fabulous Retexturing Activator.

In case you happen to be looking for a bit of inspiration, I thought I'd give you a heads up of some of my favourite products. Why not pick up The House of Roger & Gallet (onsite here), it would make an incredible Christmas present for any beauty fan. This beautiful gift set is presented in a house shaped box, the doors open to reveal the goodies inside. The box is decorated with the traditional Roger & Gallet golden swirl pattern, which just gives it a stunning luxurious feel. It would truly look beautiful under the tree before you've even had the chance to wrap it! 

If you want to try something new in the skincare category, I highly recommend Serozinc (onsite here) which is a staple in my skincare routine. Serozinc is a toning mist that you spray onto your skin after cleansing. It's made which just three ingredients; La Roche-Posay’s ultra-soothing thermal spring water, healing zinc sulphate and astringent sodium chloride. These three ingredients target blemishes and oiliness to help your skin "stay fresh all day".

There's actually nothing on the box which indicates this box set is a freebie, so you could easily gift this to a friend or loved one, or keep it for yourself. You can nab the Deluxe Gift Set for free when you spend £45 at MyDermaCenter, the offer is live until December 31st. You can shop MyDermaCenter online here.
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Thursday, 17 December 2015

Thursday Tittle-Tattle #26

'Thursday Tittle Tattle', is a Hope, Freedom, Love blog series which has quickly become home to some of my popular posts. The series is dedicated to breaking news of the beauty world. From time-to-time, Thursday’s blog post will be dedicated to news featuring; beauty and lifestyle news, events, discounts, and even a bit of fashion news thrown in too! It's so funny that even though we're only just into December, all the beauty news has already moved to Spring! Which is good news if you feel fed up of Christmas beauty already, however, there is some festive news (and offers) coming your way.




New additions to the Nip+Fab Viper Venom Range

The Viper Venom range from Nip+Fab use syn-ake, which smoothes and tenses the skin to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. This week they've announced two new additions to blur, mattify and reduce the appearance of imperfections for perfect, silken skin. Micro Blur Fix (shop here) is a skin primer, which blurs and mattifys the skin, for an instant flawless complexion so you’re selfie ready. Viper Venom Frown Fix (shop here) is a concentrated blend of high-tech ingredients to ease the appearance of expression lines and wrinkles. It comes in a handy brush pen, so you simply brush the product over particularly deep or noticeable lines for an instant blurring effect.

In other news, they've also announced that Kylie Jenner is their brand ambassador for another year!


The Library of Fragrance announces Valentines Day release

It’s really no secret that The Library of Fragrance is one of my most favourite brands! I absolutely love hearing about all their new releases. Today is all about the launch of their Valentine Cologne. If you don’t know much about The Library of Fragrance, there aim is to create simple unique fragrances. The Valentine Cologne is all about bottling ‘love’. The fragrance blends notes of lemon zest, jasmine, honeysuckle, water lotus and white rose.  It might seem a bit early for Valentines Day, but this new scent actually launches on January 1st, priced at £15.  

Christmas offerings at Cult Beauty

Oskia have announced their first ever Christmas Cracker, which is available at Cult Beauty. It would be the perfect stocking filler for any Oskia fan, or someone who is yet to try the brand. Inside the cracker you get a miniature Renaissance Cleansing Gel and it retails for £18 here. Jouer also have a stunning array of brushes named the 'Essential Luxe Brush Set'. They have super soft synthetic bristles and they are decorated with the most gorgeous gold-toned handles. There are three double-ended brushes in the set, and it retails for £59 here. 

Limited Edition LUSH Scents at the LUSH Oxford Street Store
If you’re looking for something a bit more “this season” you might be interested in the announcement from LUSH. They have  announced the launch of their Limited Edition LUSH Scents, available throughout December at LUSH Kitchen and LUSH Oxford Street. The new scents include: Snow Fairy, Celebrate, Lord Of Misrule and Tramp.

New launches from Benefit 

There are some new products coming from Benefit Cosmetics in the new year. This time they are adding to their POREfessional product line with two new products. POREfessional Matte is a new invisible finish mattifying gel and the POREfessional Instant Wipeout Masks are dual-sided products that clean out and smooth out the look of pores and remove pore impurities with the special textured fabric. Both new products will launch nationwide from 30 January 2016.

Viktor & Rolf available at Escentual plus save up to 15%
Viktor & Rolf fans will be super pleased that the brand is now available at Escentual. The whole range of perfumes is now available to buy (and you can still get them in time for Christmas!) - shop the range here. They also have a pre-Christmas offer, where you can save either 10% or 15% on your order. You can save 10% when you spend £70 by entering 'ESCENTUAL10' at the checkout. You can save 15% when you spend £120 by entering 'ESCENTUAL15' at the checkout.

Last minute shopping with Balance Me
You can get free gift wrap, shipping and a free stocking filler when you spend £45 at Balance Me! All you need to do is enter ‘WRAPPEDUP” at the checkout.

Maybelline New York expands Baby Lips Line
High street brand Maybelline have announced that they are expanding on their successful Baby Lips line. The UK launch of Baby Lips Balm & Blush will happen in January at Boots (retailing for £4.99). The product “provides a light wash of sheer colour for both the cheeks and lips”. It comes in four lovely shades (Innocent Peach, Flirty Pink, Booming Ruby and Shimmering Bronze) so there should be something for everyone!

Complementary gift wrapping from ESPA
ESPA want to help you make Christmas gifting that bit more magical! All you need to do is purchase from the ESPA website before Sunday and they will present your gift in the signature ESPA box, tied with ribbon! All you have to do is select the ‘gift wrap’ option at the checkout and leave the rest to them.

The Instant Glow Spring Make-up Collection from Clarins
Launching nationwide from 10 January, the brand new collection from Clarins includes a beautiful selection of products for the Spring season. One of my favourite items is Limited Edition Natural Glow 5-Colour Eye Shadow Palette, which is a five-piece rose-bronze compact. They’ve also expanded on their gorgeous ‘Ombre’ line, announcing the Ombre Iridescent shadows. These are four new shades of cream-to-powder eye shadows (Silver Ivory, Silver Pink, Silver Green and Silver Plum). 

Need some new winter clothes?
If you’re in need of some new winter clothes, you’ll feel spoilt by the latest offer from ASOS. Right now you can get a whopping 40% off cold-weather clothes, the deal ends 5pm on Friday. Click here to shop
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Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Look Fantastic Beauty Box | December 2015

I'm a big fan of the Look Fantastic Beauty Box* (£15 a box here) all year round, but they've recently had a bit of a makeover. Especially for the Christmas season, they've been given a Christmas collectable twist! Which makes them perfect for the gifting season, but also perfect for swooning over when they arrive at my front door. What's different I hear you cry?! Well if you cannot tell already, the classic black boxes have been swapped out for white boxes, which have been decorated with the most beautiful gold detailing. There were three special editions of the Christmas boxes, here below I have No.3, which is the December box, lets take a look at what is inside...





The December Look Fantastic box aims to give you everything you need for the party season. The box features a whopping six really great products, all in really good sizes! Starting with skincare we have the Eve Lom Morning Time Cleanser, which promises to "give your complexion the best possible start to the day". This cleanser is a special two minute treatment, which leaves your skin feeling "soft, exfoliated, toned and brightened". Next up is the CODAGE N.03 Radiance and Energy Serum, which is specially formulated for tired, dull skin - perfect for the winter months! It aims to "banish the signs of fatigue and ageing with a revitalising feel".

Moving on to pamper time, we have one of my favourite items in the box! I've been obsessed with Molton Brown recently, so the Molton Brown Japanese Orange Body Wash practically had me weak at the knees. It comes packaged in the standard Molton Brown packaging and is made using a unique blend of natural ingredients.

Next lets talk makeup, as we have two makeup products in the box! First up we have a miniature version of the Lord & Berry Sparkle Eye Pencil, which is there beautiful black kajal, finished with a flurry of glitter. The second item is a pair of the Eylure Exaggerate Eyelashes (No.156), in the box you get a pair of lashes, the glue and an applicator to try and make life as simple as possible!

Last but not least we have The Wet Brush Squirts, which is a miniature version of The Wet Brush! I actually have one of these brushes from a previous box, plus a full sized one which I bought after I fell in love with it! These brushes are blooming fantastic, we're talking pain-free hair detangling! 

The Look Fantastic Beauty Boxes really look quite special and that's even before you've wrapped them! Sadly the December box has already sold out, but you can already sign up for January's box hereIf you're feeling really generous, you could actually gift someone a YEAR long subscription (priced at just £11.25 a box here) I think they'd be grateful for the excuse to pamper themselves all year long!
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Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Chocoholic Afternoon Tea | Christmas With Buy A Gift

I'm a big fan of buying someone the "gift that keeps on giving". Giving someone a gift of an activity has the air of excitement around it and it gives you both something to look forward to. Whenever I'm gift buying, I frequently check out Buy A Gift as they have a huge range of ideas for activities and things to do. 

If you've not guessed before by all of my reviews, I'm a bit of an Afternoon Tea fan! Is there much better than tea, sandwhiches, scones and cake? I don't think so! If you're still stuck with a idea of what to get your mum, sister, girlfriend or best friend for Christmas, I have just the thing! Why not treat them to Chocoholic Afternoon Tea at the Hilton on Park Lane (£49 here). It's by far one of the best Afternoon Tea's I've ever been to (and I've been to a lot)! Keep reading for my full review.




What's great about the Chocoholic Afternoon Tea at the Hilton on Park Lane is that it's something a bit different. You get to go to a bit of fancy location and try something that is truly out-of-the-ordinary (and indulgent)! The Afternoon Tea is served in the Podium Restaurant and it's been created by the Executive Chef. As soon as we sat down we were offered water and our choice of tea and coffee! It's actually quite rare to have a water glass that is frequently topped up at Afternoon Tea. I also took the contreversion decision and had a latte, but there were a ton of tea choices (including a chocolate tea option). After our drinks had arrived, the platter of Afternoon Tea was quick to arrive too. 

The sandwhiches were something a bit different, a range of 'open sandwhiches' which included lots of different breads topped with yummy fillings. There was a salmon and cream cheese, cucumber, prawn mayo, ham and tomato, plus the traditional egg option. The scones came with the traditional jam and cream combination, but also a yummy praline spread that tasted like Ferrero Rocher! 

Next we had a huge platter of sweet treats, which included a chocolate orange cake, a raspberry cupcake, a chocolate macaron and a whole load of other yummy pastries. All the chocolate pastries were even served on an edible white chocolate plate! If that wasn't enough, there was also two lollipops (one cake pop & one biscuit) served in a pot of chocolate pearls.

I have to say that everything from start to finish was perfect. The staff were fantastic and the food was great too. When you consider that this costs just £49 for two people, in the center of London, it's really good value for money. You can even pop by Buckingham Palace on the way home! There are not many chocolate afternoon tea packages available in the UK, so you can almost guarantee it's something they've never tried before. Pick up your loved one a voucher for Chocoholic Afternoon Tea at the Hilton on Park Lane, I doubt they'll be disappointed (£49 here). 


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Monday, 14 December 2015

A New Look & New Shades For Vichy Dermablend

Vichy is one of my favourite brands and the Dermablend Setting Powder has been a staple in my routine since I first tried it last year. Dermablend has been helping women with severe skin concerns for the last 30 years, providing expert high coverage foundation. Dermablend has recently introduced a brand new look for the range, whilst adding new shades to their bestselling Corrective Fluid Foundation. The old white packaging has been swapped with black packaging, which looks so sleek and much prettier. 



The Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation* has a high concentration of pigments, which provides extra coverage than your average foundation. Thankfully, the high coverage still comes with a beautiful formula, which provides a blendable texture to give you a flawless finish. The high coverage formula of this foundation, allows you to cover a whole multitude of sins; from dark circles, to spots and even skintone. It also allows you to cover a whole number of more severe skin conditions and scars. The Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation now comes in eight different shades, as they've added three new colours to their lineup. The new shades include Porcelain (05) for fair skin, but also Coffee (65) and Espresso (75) for darker skintones. 

The Dermablend Collection does not just stop at the Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation. The range also includes; the Corrective Stick, the Corrective Cream Compact, the Total Body Corrective Foundation and my personal favourite, the Setting Powder.

The Vichy Dermablend Setting Powder* completely changed my opinion on setting powders in 2014. I've had quite oily skin all my life, so it's rare for me to leave the house without a setting spray. The Setting Powder from Dermablend was the first Setting Powder that I tried and loved. The Vichy Dermablend Setting Powder aims to enhance the hold of your makeup for 16 hours. It's a translucent powder which is packed with SPF30. It's incredibly fine and it comes with a powder puff for application. I've actually always used a fan brush to apply the setting powder, as I just find the puff too messy.

The setting powder has no fragrance and it is completely invisible on the skin. It ensures smudge and water resistant finish all day long, which is perfect for miserable winter weather. It leaves your skin looking matt and natural, not a cakey finish in sight! I use this setting powder on it's own and it keeps my makeup in place all day, every day. It's a lifesaver!

You can pick up the whole Vichy Dermablend range from Boots and Escentual, prices start at £15. 
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Sunday, 13 December 2015

Sugar Plum by Tanya Burr Cosmetics

Christmas has officially started here on Hope, Freedom, Love! This year I've got a whole host of gifts that I'm going to be reviewing for you. So if you're looking for the perfect gift for your mum, dad, sister, boyfriend, best friend (or even yourself) you're in the right place! The next gift I want to speak about is this super cute stocking filler from Tanya Burr Cosmetics.

There is no denying that the beauty ranges from team YouTube are taking the world by storm. You've only got to go onto the Superdrug website to see the wealth of "out of stock" notifications. However I actually experienced it first hand in Superdrug, with a young girl getting very excited about the treats from Zoella Beauty that her mum was putting in the shopping basket. Tanya Burr recently announced the relaunch of her cosmetics line, featuring new packaging, colours, logos and products. The new products definitely look more luxurious and fit more comfortably in the modern market. Along with the relaunch of the packaging, Tanya Burr Cosmetics also added a whole host of Christmas gifts to the lineup.



The gifts that really caught my eye were the three little nail sets, which are all under £10. The particular one that I caved and bought is the 'Sugar Plum Nail Polish & Nail Art Set'. The kit is packaged in a stunning box, which has a lovely silver and gold colour scheme. Decorated with a glitter 'roof' which makes the box look like a little gingerbread house. It's very simple and it definitely looks pretty impressive for it's £6 price point. 

Inside the box you get a full sized version of the Sugar Plum Tanya Burr Cosmetics Nail Polish, which is a rich plum shade and a little set of nail stickers. The polish itself comes in the new rectangle shape bottle, which is very similar to the likes of Nails Inc and Butter London. The nail polish has a shiny gold lid, which pops off to reveal the brush lid inside. The brush itself is quite wide, but it doesn't have the rounded tip like some of the other brands have. The polish is pigmented and it dries very quickly, which means you can get two coats of this polish on your nails in no time at all.

Obviously the Tanya Burr Cosmetics line is aimed at a much younger age range than me, but I certainly don't think it feels childish (I'd love to know what you guys think). I think the Sugar Plum Set, would definitely suit women of all ages, it would make a really great secret santa gift (or a great little extra to add into someone's Christmas gift bag). 

You can pick up the Tanya Burr Cosmetics Sugar Plum set online with Feel Unique here for £5, or from Superdrug stores or online for £6 here
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Saturday, 12 December 2015

Skinny Meets Chubby | Christmas from Clinique

Christmas might be rapidly approaching, but I'm not quite finished with my gift suggestions. Today I wanted to give you a closer look at one of the Christmas sets from Clinique. I'm never normally obsessed with the Christmas sets from Clinique, but this year it's been a bit relentless. I actually had a hard job just picking one of the Clinique makeup sets, they all have such a great selection of products at a bargain price. In the end I picked up the Skinny Meets Chubby Set (£28 here).



The reason I picked the Skinny Meets Chubby set in the end, was down to the Chubby Stick Shadow Tints. I've wanted to try these chubby eyeshadows literally since the moment they launched and the need for them hasn't gone away. Normally the Chubby Stick Shadow Tint For Eyes retail for £17 each, so they are quite pricey (especially when you can't just pick one shade that you want). 

The Skinny Meets Chubby set, comes in a super cute mini box, which is finished with a picture of the products and a purple colour scheme. In the box you get three mini Chubby Stick Shadow Tints in the shades; Bountiful Beige (which is a creamy nude), Ample Amber (which is a golden bronze shade) and Lavish Lilac (which is a lovely taupe-purple shade). If that wasn't enough you also get three mini Skinny Stick eyeliners, in the shades; Skinny Jeans (which is a navy blue), Petite Plum (which is a purple shade) and then finally Slim Sable (which is a brown shade). 

The Skinny Stick eyeliners and the Chubby Stick Shadow Tints have had some pretty rave reviews on the bloggersphere, so I'm certain that all of these minis are going to become staples in my makeup routine. The Skinny Meets Chubby Gift Set retails for £28 from the Clinique website (here) and several other Clinique distributors. 
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Friday, 11 December 2015

Christmas Offerings from The Body Shop

Every year, I eagerly await the release of the Christmas collection from The Body Shop. It's actually become a bit of a tradition for me to pick up a few things from The Body Shop in the run up to Christmas. In fact, you can find some pretty old blog posts right here on Hope, Freedom, Love which date all the way back to 2011. There's something about the pretty gift sets and the fancy scents that I just cannot resist. 

This year the range is once again rich with fabulous scents, with the return of my favourites; Glazed Apple and Frosted Cranberry. Old timers on Hope, Freedom, Love will know that I fell in love with both these scents last year (I actually shamelessly stocked up in case they never returned). If those scents don't tickle your fancy, there's also Frosted Plum and a whole range of gifts from their permanent line.



As soon as I saw the range of festive candles this year, I knew I had to buy one. It was hard picking between the scents, but in the end I opted for the Frosted Cranberry Scented Candle. The candle retails for £10 and it comes in a generous 200g jar, it's scented with the fruity Frosted Cranberry frangrance, which has notes of cranberry, pomegranate and red berries. The candle comes packed in the classic Frosted Cranberry colours, featuring red and black stripes. However the candle inside is housed in a classic white jar, which means it will fit in with any decor. The candle is Paraffin-free and it's made with Community Fair Trade soya oil.

Since falling in love with the Roger & Gallet Fleur de Figuier range, my love for fig scents has been a bit unstoppable, in fact it's been a bit relentless. So when the Italian Summer Fig range range by The Body Shop launched earlier this year, I knew it would only be a matter of time before something from the line joined my beauty stash. Normally you can't use a voucher code on the Italian Summer Fig range, but you can actually use them on the Christmas gifts, so it felt like the right time to splurge. I opted for the Italian Summer Fig Eau de Toilette Gift Set, which retails for £28. The set comes in a gorgeous box and houses two bottles of the Eau de Toilette (one 50ml and one 10ml) plus a miniature bottle of the Italian Summer Fig Body Lotion. I think it's quite nice to gift something that is not necessarily a Christmas scent, as it means they can use it all year round.



All in all, I think these are two lovely gifts at two different price points. They both offer great value for money, especially if you can bag them with a voucher code and I think most people would be chuffed to receive them.
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Thursday, 10 December 2015

Thursday Tittle-Tattle #25

'Thursday Tittle Tattle', is a Hope, Freedom, Love blog series which has quickly become home to some of my popular posts. The series is dedicated to breaking news of the beauty world. From time-to-time, Thursday’s blog post will be dedicated to news featuring; beauty and lifestyle news, events, discounts, and even a bit of fashion news thrown in too! It's so funny that even though we're only just into December, all the beauty news has already moved to Spring! Which is good news if you feel fed up of Christmas beauty already, however, there is some festive news coming your way.



The Peanuts & Cambridge Satchel Collection
As soon as I saw the collaboration with Peanuts and The Cambridge Satchel Company, I loved it! It's such a cute idea and the items in the collection are totally swoon worthy! I love the fact that there is something at all different price points, including notebooks, travel tags and satchels. Shop the collection here

La Roche-Posay launches 'Effaclar BB Blur'
La Roche-Posay has blended the benefits of BB formulas and blur technology to release their latest innovation for their Effaclar range! It's called Effaclar BB Blur and it's designed to remove shine, for an instantly flawless complexion. La Roche-Posay say that marks resulting from blemishes encourage us to use products that actually worsen skin issues (such as redness, acne scarring, enlarged pores and uneven skin tone). Effaclar BB Blur is ideal to use to remove persistent shine all whilst being suitable for the most sensitive skin. It's launched in two colours for £16.50 here

Soap & Glory bargain Boots offer is back
Beauty fans WORLDWIDE wait patiently for the launch of the Boots 'Deal Of The Week' with Soap & Glory every single year. This year they have announced the Limited Edition It's The Whole She-Bang gift. It's encased in a bag designed by British fashion designer Philip Colbert, worth over £60 and available for £30 from the 11th December. The gift will contain nine huge items, including; Hand Food Hand Cream, Heel Genius Foot Cream, Peaches & Clean Cleanser, Thick & Fast HD Mascara and the Sexy Mother Pucker Lip Gloss in Rose & Shine. Check out the set here.

Save money on your Feel Unique order
I've got two fabulous voucher codes to share with you for Feel Unique, which will both run until 31st December! You can save £5 when you spend £50 by entering FEEL5DEC at the checkout, or you can save 15% when you spend £100 by entering FEEL15DEC at the checkout. Shop at Feel Unique here.

Rimmel London announce January launches
I love Rimmel London, they are one of my favourite brands, so any new announcements from them tend to have me hot under the collar. Their first announcement is the Fix and Protect Primer, which has SPF25 and will retail for £6.99. Rimmel say this is a lightweight moisturising formula that shelters skin from pollution, filters out UV rays and helps to prevent dehydration. The second launch is the Magnif' Eyes Double Ended Shadow and Liner, which will also retail for £6.99. This is a double ended pencil, which has an eyeshadow at one end and a kohl kajal liner at the other. 

Birchbox is back at Selfridges
I was so disappointed that I didn't get the chance to see the Birchbox popup in Selfridges earlier in the year! So I'm glad they are back to answer our Christmas shopping needed. They are back in the Beauty Workshop and inviting you to Build Your Own Birchbox, for yourself or your loved ones. You can choose six deluxe samples from brands including; Benefit, Living proof and Ole Henriksen, all for £15! It even comes in a limited edition box! 

New Morphe products at Cult Beauty
I'm a huge fan of the Morphe brush I picked up earlier this year, so I'm really excited to see that Cult Beauty have added more synthetic Morphe brushes to their line up. I'm particularly keen to try the '6 Piece Deluxe Contour Set' and I also love the look of the 'Deluxe Buffer Brush'. Check out the full Morphe brush range here

Get 30% off gifts at ASOS
Still need to do some Christmas shopping? Why not check out the fabulous gift ideas from the folk at ASOS. I always pick up a fair few goodies from ASOS as I do my Christmas shopping and I've already placed one order this week! No code is needed, the 30% discount has already been applied. Click here to shop
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