Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Stila gets a lot of love right here on Hope, Freedom, Love and it’s with very good reason. Not only are they a gorgeous, lovely brand, but their products are so on point. Since having a packaging rebrand last year and bringing everything into the 21st Century, I’ve been struggling to resist their beautiful products. Whether it’s the cult Kitten lineup, their Convertible Lip/Cheek Pots, or their pretty palettes, I want it all! So when I was invited down to London to experience their new range in the flesh, I was pretty damn excited! 




The new lineup for Spring Summer 2017 is actually quite big - check out the picture below from the launch, which doesn't even have all the products! There are three new highlighters, eight new eyeshadows, a huge eyeshadow palette, five new lip shades and two glitter lip top coats. If you hadn’t already guessed by the name of the post, this new collection is inspired by glitter and I’m in LOVE. I wear (arguably too much) glitter every day of the week, I love that it’s so quick and versatile, making me look more awake and on point in the early dark mornings.




It was actually hard for me to pick favourites from this collection and it’s going to take a lot of will power for me not to buy the bits that I didn’t bring home in my goody bag. However, if I was going to pick (three) favourites, they would be the magnificent metals glitter & glow liquid eyeshadows (£23 each here), the heaven's hue highlighter (£28 here) and the matte 'n metal eye shadow palette (£39 for 12 shades here). I’m going to give you the lowdown on the one of the highlighters and glitter eyeshadows right now, as I was lucky enough to bring them home with me. 




The magnificent metals glitter & glow liquid eyeshadows are literally glitter eyeshadows in a pot. Inside the square tube you find a dazzling, long-wearing liquid, with the most crazy, pigmented eyeshadow. If you like an eye look that glimmers and shines, this beauty is for you! The glitter inside is a mixture of pearl and glitter, in lots of different sizes, which allows you to achieve a really spectacular sparkle.




The formula is actually very light-weight as it’s water-infused, which allows it to dry quickly on the lid. One of the Stila makeup artists applied this on me and she recommended tapping it on to the lid with your finger, you can also use it straight from the applicator for an intense finish. I’m loving that I can just use this straight on my eyelid for an eye look which looks spectacular! These magnificent metals glitter & glow liquid eyeshadows are available in eight different shades, I have the shade ‘Smoky Storm*’ and it’s going to be hard not to collect them all!

Next up we have the heaven's hue highlighter, which is available in three different shades. There’s Kitten (the iconic classic – the shade needs no real introduction), Transcendence (a light pink) and Bronze* (a sunkissed glow, which is the one I have here). What’s interesting about these is that they have a very bouncy texture to them, it’s almost a putty. When you swatch it, it just feels like a really soft, light powder, which kicks off some incredible pigment. On the skin it melts into the complexion to give you a really subtle, healthy glow on the skin. When the makeup artist explained this was a ‘putty’, I was actually a bit disheartened as I really hate cream highlight, but these perform beautifully, I’m so impressed! 




I've swatched both these products for you below, the Smoky Storm eyeshadow is on the top and the Bronze highlighter is on the bottom. The whole Glitter Underground Spring Summer Collection is available right now and I’m OBSESSED. Let’s just say that the palette will be mine and the eyeshadows might have to join the collection too! Pick up the full collection right now from Cult Beauty



Monday, 30 January 2017

Oh COLAB, you do make my heart flutter! If I had to write a list of holy grail brands, COLAB would be right at the top of that list. I’ve used a lot of different dry shampoos in my time and nothing really compares to COLAB. COLAB has been round for a good couple of years now and I’ve actually always loved the packaging. However, they’ve recently been given a bit of a face lift and its better than ever. For me it was one of those moments where you didn’t realise something even needed improving, but now it’s done, its perfect!



If you’ve been living on another planet and no nothing about COLAB – you’ll be pleased to know that COLAB is an award winning dry shampoo. The formula was created by a team of beauty insiders, including one of my favourite blogger/vlogger sensations - Ruth Crilly. You simply spray this into your air and it instantly absorbs grease and oil, without leaving any residue in the air. It’s honestly a dream formula and it’s a staple in my haircare routine. 



The latest fragrance is COLAB Paradise* and dare I say it, I think it’s my favourite one yet! COLAB say that this new scent has been designed to give you “feel-good flamingo vibes” and it’s perfect for this time of year! It’s a blend of citrus, tonka bean, coconut and white flower – it’s totally tropical! If you’re a follower of my blog, you’ll know that I’m obsessed with coconut and so this scent is perfect for me! It has the same beautiful formulation and I just know this is going to be in my travel bag for my holiday later this year! I had no idea what to expect next from COLAB, so this lovely PR package had my heart fluttering – my name on a can of COLAB just made my week complete, such a lovely touch!



I think it’s safe to say that this flamingo themed packaged has me craving the warmer weather! The new scent is available right now and you can grab it from Feel Unique or Superdrug, priced at £3.49. Better still, if you buy it right now from Superdrug it only costs £1.74, what else could you ask for?! Why not grab yourself a can and transport yourself to a tropical island on faraway shores! 

Friday, 27 January 2017

When it comes to high street makeup, not many brands do it better than Sleek Makeup. Not only are their products affordable and accessible, but their products are always bang on trend every single season. Their latest release aims to give you a product that will keep your brows looking fleek all day long.



Brow Intensity* from Sleek Makeup is a handy double ended brow tool that brings top quality eyebrows to your handbag. It arrives in a sleek (excuse the pun) black tube, which is elegantly finished with the Sleek Makeup logo. You’d be forgiven for thinking this is ‘just another brow tool’ as in reality it’s really quite innovative. On one end of the tool have the brow gel, which is suspended in the tube, with a clever applicator to apply to product to the brows. The applicator is a sponge/brush hybrid, which has been specially designed for the product. Use the very tip of the brush (which happens to be a sponge applicator) to apply the brow gel wherever you need it. Then use the main body of the brush to disperse it through the bulk of your brow. The brow gel is fibre-enriched, which adds colour and thickness, for natural full looking brows.



After you’ve filled in your brows with the brow gel, it’s time for the highlighting (my favourite part). Simply twist up the slanted luminous highlighting pencil and use it to contour and carve your brows. You can even apply the highlighter into the inner corners of your eye, to make your eyes look bigger and more awake. I have to say that the first time I used this highlighter it actually snapped, so it's a little bit brittle! 

What I love about Brow Intensity is that it is so versatile, you can use it to add a little bit of definition to your natural brows. Or you can use the tool to create a look that is far more bold! Brow Intensity is available in five different shades (Light, Medium, Dark, Extra Dark and Black) and each shade has been perfectly matched to its complementary highlighter shade. I've been testing with the shade 'Medium' which I've swatch for you below. Don’t miss your chance to add this beauty to your collection, you can grab it now from Superdrug, priced at £8.50


Thursday, 26 January 2017

Hope, Freedom, Love just wouldn’t feel complete without my 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' series! 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' has to be my longest running blog series and its home to the posts that get the best feedback from my readers. I absolutely love that you guys come back time and time again to read my 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' posts, so it was only right to continue these in 2017. This series is dedicated to breaking news of the beauty world, where most Thursday’s I bring you all the exciting news featuring; beauty and lifestyle news, events, discounts, and even a bit of fashion news thrown in too! This week I’m back with a bang with new BY TERRY skincare and much more! Keep reading...




Lipstick Chess from Lipstick Queen
Lipstick Queen’s latest release really is quite fun and quirky, it combines lipstick and chess, to create ‘Lipstick Chess’. The new six, full coverage shades that represent a new take on chess, with each shade being paired with a chess piece. You simply pick your favourite colour, turn it upside down and reveal the chess piece hiding on the bottom. Each of the chess pieces has a personality assigned to it, which is designed to reveal the inner you. Each of the lipsticks are designed to wear matte, with a hydrating, suede-feel formula. The ingredients include Natural Oils, Waxes and Anti-Oxidant Vitamin E. Are you the Ruby Red Queen who reigns supreme or the Subtle Nude Pawn who is loyal to what they love? Why not find out in this latest release! 

New Lavender Blossom from KORRES
If you’re a frequent reader of my blog you’ll know that I’m a big KORRES fan – if you’re also a fan you’ll be excited to know that a new scent is on the horizon! Lavender Blossom is a scent which includes notes of freshly cut lavender and citrus leaves. The new scent is launching in February and will produced in their famous shower gel and body milk, which are both created to leave the skin moisturised and soft. The Lavender Blossom Shower Gel will retail for £8 for 250ml – it’s ideal for everyday use, using wheat proteins to form a protective film on the skin. The Lavender Blossom Body Milk will retail for £10 for 200ml and is a combination of Almond oil, active Aloe, Provitamin B5 and Shea Butter for long-lasting hydration.

Latest In Beauty X Le Fashion Fetish
Everyone loves a beauty box and the latest box from Latest In Beauty looks gorgeous! It’s a pretty collaboration with Anna Shearer (the London-based fashionista behind luxury fashion, beauty and travel blog Le Fashion Fetish). It’s dubbed the ‘blogger’s dream box’ and features lots of lovely products! In the box you will find: The Chantecaille Biodynamic + Cream, the Skimono Face Mask, a Nails Inc Gel Effect Polish, some Tada & Toy studs, a OM Skincare Konjac Sponge/Cleanser, the Maria Nila Hair Mask, the Oribe Supershine Cream, a Smith & Cult Lip Gloss, the Nip & Fab Micro Blur Fix and the Rosalena Rose Oil, plus a voucher for the Strip Wax Bar. Pick up your Le Fashion Fetish x Latest in Beauty box for just £60 plus FREE P+P for subscribers.

New BAUME DE ROSE line from BY TERRY 
I think most beauty fans will have heard of BAUME DE ROSE – the famous lip treatment from BY TERRY. Now the brand is back with a fully ‘blossomed’ line of skincare products. The new line up will include three brand new skincare products, each designed to lavish yourself from head to toe. Following the restorative power of the legendary BAUME DE ROSE, each of the products are designed to nourish, regenerate, hydrate and protect all skin types. The new lineup will include the Face Cream (50ml) designed to be hydrating and nourishing, the Hand Cream (75g) designed to be hydrating and nourishing and the Body Cream (200ml) designed to be nourishing and repairing. Shop the full range here.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

We all know that I'm utterly obsessed with trying contouring products. It's not even because I'm good at contouring, in fact, it's the complete opposite! I'm always on the hunt for that one product that makes contouring simple and easy, without spending a fortune. Now, there are a lot of contouring sticks on the market, but what is different about this one from Collection is the size. It's aptly named the 'Precision Contouring Stick' - designed to give you ultimate control over your contoured look. 




You can probably already tell, but the Precision Contouring Stick is tiny. It's not designed to create hollows in your cheekbones in seconds, but instead it's designed for those more tricky places that you want to contour. It's a lovely matte cream contour shade, which you can actually use in a number of ways! It's particularly nice is that the pigmentation of this product, boils down to how you use it. You can see by my swatches below, that a light press gives you a nice faint line, but pressing slightly harder gives you a darker more intense finish. Better still, if you use too much of this, it's easy to fix your mistakes. It's incredibly blendable and you can erase a mistake very quickly.




The small size of this Precision Contouring Stick means that you can contour those hard to reach areas. If you've ever tried to contour your nose with powder, or one of those bigger sticks, you'll know that it's pretty impossible when you're not professionally trained. However with this this stick, you just draw two quick lines either side of the bridge of the nose and with a quick blend you're good to go!

The Precision Contouring Sticks come in a plastic tube with silver detailing - not too shabby when you consider that these only cost £3.99! When you need to, you simply twist the bottom of the tube to reveal more product, so you don't even have to faff around with a sharpener! The sticks are available in three different shades (light, medium and dark), which hopefully means there is a shade that suits a variety of different skintones. Pick up the Precision Contouring Stick from Boots here

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

If you’re somebody who really struggles with keeping your hair looking smooth, I might just have the brand for you. 72 Hair was new to me before the end of last year, but they are a really exciting brand who really understand how to look after your hair. The creators of 72 are responsible for bringing keratin smoothing treatments to the UK, plus they have over 72 years of combined experience in the hair industry – so they know a thing or two about our hair. 72 Hair’s mission is to ensure everyone can achieve the same perfect results regardless of their hair texture and type. So whether you have hair that is over processed, coloured, afro hair or hair that’s never been treated – this brand is for you! 




72 Hair have created a range that creates healthy, gorgeous hair with minimum effort and maximum style. After years of research and development, they devised a new generation of gel based keratin – which they say is guaranteed to offer consumers the power to eliminate the daily struggle of maintaining perfect looking hair. They use the gel based keratin in their lovely salon-based treatments. Alongside there lovely salon treatments, they also have the 72 Hair product collection. The product collection includes six lovely products: there is a Nourishing Shampoo, an SLS-free Intense Moisture Shampoo, a Hydrating Conditioner, an Intense Replenishing Mask, a Blow Dry Cream and a Repairing Oil. In all the products you will find Hydrolysed Keratin (which revitalizes the hair and helps rebuild strength), Collagen (which creates a protective shield against irritation) and Hydrolysed Silk (which protects against environmental damage).

I have permed, coloured hair which suffers with being a little frizzy, but despite all the chemicals still actually ends up quite greasy. I’ve been testing three products from the collection, which are all absolutely lovely. The Intense Moisture Shampoo* (£14.99 here) is SLS free, so it’s perfect for people like me who have chemically treated hair. This shampoo is quite thick and it has a really fresh scent – as you apply it to the hair it feels really moisturising and the sulphate free ingredients balance moisture levels, without stripping the hair. The Hydrating Conditioner* (£14.99 here) is very similar to the shampoo, as it has a thick texture with a lovely fresh scent.  This product has been designed to nourish hair, even when it’s incredibly damaged – it even protects against sun exposure, pollution and harmful UVA. The Repairing Oil* (£14.99 here) is designed to be a luxurious oil for all hair types – even in my greasy locks it just leaves my hair looking shiny and pretty. It’s been created with Cocoa Oil, which softens the hair whilst leaving no residue. 

The products form 72 Hair are definitely at a premium price point, but they honestly offer great ingredients and also protection from all the harmful processes we put our hair through! All the products are available online from the 72 Hair website and selected salons nationwide; including Rush Salons, Josh Wood Atelier, Jo Hansford and Paul Edmonds.

Monday, 23 January 2017

I harp on about highlighter and eyeshadow palettes, but a huge makeup love of mine is mascara! I'm actually incredibly fussy with mascara and I normally know instantly if I love or hate a new mascara. I actually received the Chubby Lash Fattening Mascara in a Clinique beauty box and out of all the products in the box, this was the least appealing thing to me. Little did I know that I'd love this mascara and I'd soon find it hard to live without it...




We've all heard about the range of 'chubby' products from Clinique. We have lipsticks, blushers and even eyeshadows, but did you know that there is also a Chubby Lash Mascara? The Chubby Lash mascara is delivered in a pretty white box, which has been decorated with flowers and leaves in pretty pastel hues, finished with delicate green lettering. When you open the box, you reveal a jet black round mascara tube, which has a lovely metal handle and pretty white lettering. The brush itself is described as "oversized" and they are completely right as it is really quite big. Despite the size of the brush, it's actually very easy to use, grabbing each lash and coating it in the lovely volumising formula.






Asyou can probably guess by the 'fattening' in the name of the mascara, this mascara is all about adding volume to the lashes. In one quick application, the Chubby Lash Fattening Mascara coats lashes from root to tip. Offering the lashes immense volume and a rich colour, which doesn't go clumpy, fake off or smudge throughout the day. The colour of the mascara is jet black, which means it gives a lovely dramatic finish to the eyelashes, with very little effort. To be honest, one coat gives me everything I need for my everyday work makeup, but you can keep layering for something more and more dramatic. 

This mascara retails for £17.50, which of course makes it more expensive than the high street, but it's certainly cheaper than some of high end mascaras on the market. You can buy the Chubby Lash Fattening Mascara from Boots here

Friday, 20 January 2017

There’s no doubt that glitter liners feel like a throwback from the 90’s, but I feel like everything has a perfect time and place! Whether you’re looking for a shade for your latest fancy dress look, going to a party or simply going to work – the Collection Glam Crystals Dazzling Glitter Gel Liners* have a shade for you! 




The Glam Crystals Dazzling Glitter Gel Liner from Collection is a fantastic way to try glitter liner on a budget! These beauties retail for a tiny £2.99, but they are everything you need and more. The little liners arrive in clear tubes, which let the colour of the product shine through. They are finished with a black lid and black lettering which explains what the product is. When you unscrew the lid you find a tiny wand, which is perfect for precision application. The formula itself features fine glitter particles (of all different pretty colours), suspended in a clear quick drying gel. 

There are a whopping 14 different shades available from Collection and I have three here to show you. ‘Le Freak’ is not for the faint hearted, this one is a bright blue glitter - it would bring life and soul to any makeup look! ‘Rock Chick’ is a deep black glitter, with is decorated with specs of silver – I personally think this one looks great on top of your regular black eyeliner. Finally we have ‘Dig It’ which is an equal mixture of black and gold glitter, perfect for glam evening events when you just want to add something extra to your look.




There are loads of ways you can wear Glitter Eyeliner, but my personal favourite way is to use the applicator to dab the glitter along the lash line. For some thing more subtle keep the line thin and delicate, but for something more eye catching you can create a thicker, more dramatic line. As I mentioned, the Glam Crystals Dazzling Glitter Gel Liners retail for a tiny £2.99, so why not add a couple to your collection and start experimenting!

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Hope, Freedom, Love just wouldn’t feel complete without my 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' series! 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' has to be my longest running blog series and its home to the posts that get the best feedback from my readers. I absolutely love that you guys come back time and time again to read my 'Thursday Tittle Tattle' posts, so it was only right to continue these in 2017. This series is dedicated to breaking news of the beauty world, where most Thursday’s I bring you all the exciting news featuring; beauty and lifestyle news, events, discounts, and even a bit of fashion news thrown in too! This week I’m back with a bang with new MERUMAYA skincare and much more! Keep reading...




The NEW MERUMAYA Retinol Resurfacing Treatment 
This new exciting product from MERUMAYA is one to add straight to your shopping list and it launches TOMORROW. It’s a special product, as it’s a Retinol Resurfacing Treatment which Maleka (MERUMAYA founder) claims “doesn’t have your face looking like, it’s literally falling off”. Retinol is made up of Vitamin A which often has some negative effects on the skin, the MERUMAYA alternative is packed full of natural ingredients that counter these negative effects and impart additional benefits. It features the maximum permitted dose of Vitamin A, which is stabilized by Vitamin A Palmitate. Aroleat Samphira is added, which is proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, even out the skin tone, regulate sebum and reduce inflammation. There’s even two different molecular weights of Hyaluronic Acid, to ensure the skin retains moisture in the epidermis and dermis.

Too Faced Sweet Peach
Right now the world is going ‘Sweet Peach’ crazy, as the products have just hit the stores today! The new Sweet Peach range features the best-selling Sweet Peach Eye Shadow Palette (£39) plus number of new peach-inspired products. The new products include a whole set of Sweet Peach Creamy Lip Oil (£16) which are a glossy-balm hybrid, created with whipped peach lip oil. There is also the Papa Don’t Peach Blush (£25) and my personal favourite is the Sweet Peach Glow Palette (£34) - a peach-infused highlighting palette with the three shades you need for highlighting, bronzing and adding blusher to the skin. Shop the new collection right now at Debenhams!

La Roche-Posay RESPECTISSIME
If you’re someone who really suffers from wearing mascara, this latest release is for you! For people who suffer from sensitive eyes, wearing mascara can often cause further discomfort. La Roche-Posay has created the RESPECTISSIME range, which includes a range of mascaras, plus an eye makeup remover, which offers protection from mascara intolerance. The range has passed through rigorous tolerance testing and is perfect for contact lens wearers or irritated eyes. There is the RESPECTISSIME Volume Mascara, the RESPECTISSIME  Multi-Dimensions mascara and the RESPECTISSIME Waterproof Mascara. Finally there’s the Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover - a bi-phase formula removes eye makeup instantaneously and effectively, without rubbing or irritating eyes. You can pick up the full RESPECTISSIME range at Escentual now.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

I’m sure there was a time when the sales used to last a matter of days. Nowadays the January sales seem to last a lifetime, with more and more products being added every day. I’ve really been enjoying reading about some of the bargains my favourite bloggers have nabbed, so I decided to whisk around my home and put together my own post. I’m genuinely quite bad at not buying the things I want – the term TREAT YO’SELF is practically my mantra. So normally, if I really want something – I tend to waste too much of my money buying it. That being said, there were actually a few things that I had my eye on before Christmas, that had managed to escape my grasp – it was time to rectify this!



My sales shopping consisted of two shops – Boots and SpaceNK – both of which I waited for patiently on Christmas Eve, whilst slightly merry and full of chocolate. First up was Space NK and I was delighted that so many of my favourites had been popped into the sale! One brand I’ve heard a lot about, but never tried is Chantecaille. Their fall release was named ‘Protect The Lions’ and featured so many lovely products embossed with a delicate lion design. The Lion Pride Cheek Shade had been reduced to £24 and I just couldn’t resist it’s subtle pink shimmer any longer! 



Next up is the Sun Designer Palette from By Terry, which was reduced to £32 and has been on my wish list since August.  Inside the luscious velvet pouch, you find a palette comprising of six different face hues – including bronzers, blushers and highlighters. I’ve been obsessed with By Terry all damn year, I love their lipsticks and their cream eyeshadows, so I’m damn excited to try out some of their powder products! One side of the palette features some pretty bronzing hues, whilst the other side features some pretty daring blusher shades! I think this is going to be a fantastic travel palette!



I think it’s safe to say that basically all the beauty gurus all over the UK are raving about Smith & Cult! I fell in love with one of their glitter polishes earlier this year and I felt it was time to try out one of their colour shades. ‘The Graduate’ was reduced to £9 and it’s an opaque rich taupe nail polish – I’ve been loving these hues in the last couple of months. Smith & Cult polishes are highly pigmented and they are 8-free, which means they are formulated without a lot of the common nasties! 

The last thing I picked up from SpaceNK was something quite special! I’ve really wanted to play with the Diptyque fragrances for a long time, so as soon as I saw this, I knew it was meant to be! This is the Eau De Parfum Discovery Set, which was reduced by 50% to £37. Inside the sleek black box you receive five of the signature fragrances from Diptyque – designed to allow you to discover the “luxurious olfactory universe of Diptyque”. Each of the bottles are 7.5ml and there are designed to be handbag friendly, simply finished with a silk-screen printed design. Inside the box you get Philosykos, L’Ombre dans, L’eau, Do Son, Tam Dao and Eau Duelle – I really hope they don’t leave me disappointed! 



Next up we have two goodies from Boots, once again, as soon as the sale went live I knew exactly what I’d be hunting for! First up was Essie – Essie is one of my favourite brands so I snap up any chance to get polishes at a discounted price. The Essie Cracka Colour Nail Gift Set is a super cute cracker shaped box, with four full sized Essie polishes inside. 

The last product in my haul was the Stila Star Light Star Bright Highlighting Palette, which if you follow my blog, you’ll know I was desperate to get my hands on. Inside the pretty gold palette there are three radiance-enhancing highlighters. They have a really soft texture, which just leaves a really pretty, radiant glow on your cheekbones. I was really worried that I wouldn’t be able to grab one of these before they sold out, so I am pretty chuffed to have this in my collection now!



I’d love to know about any beauty bargains you’ve grabbed recently! Have you tried any of these products?

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

If you ask me, there isn’t much better in life than receiving a fresh bouquet of flowers. There’s just something so special and personal about having them in your home, seeing them every day and thinking of that special someone. Having flowers in the home truly makes me a really happy person, so I was delighted when I was offered the chance to review some beautiful flowers from Blossoming Gifts





Before now I’d never heard of Blossoming Gifts, but I can safely say that they are about to become a staple in my gifting arsenal! Blossoming Gifts are an online retailer, offering a whole host of beautiful gifts for you to choose from. They have everything you could ever need, from fresh hand-tied flowers, a range of pretty personalised gifts and a whole host of different hampers and wines. All of the gifts are available for delivery the very next day, when you want to send them anywhere in London or throughout the UK. You simply hop on to the website and pick what takes your fancy – a few clicks and your gift is on it’s way! Blossoming Gifts provide next day flowers 7 days a week, the flowers are sourced from the finest flowers from our British growers where possible so that you can send the best bouquets throughout the UK.




I decided to test out the Blueberry Pancakes Bouquet*, which arrived bright and early the very next day. They arrived in a pretty cardboard box, which had been decorated with blue and white illustrations. What was really unique for me, is that the flowers were pre-wrapped and pre-arranged, I’ve seen flower services in the past where they just arrive flat in a box and you have to do all the hard work yourself! The Blossoming Gifts Bouquet arrived arranged beautifully, so all I had to do was snip off a couple of centimeters on the stems and pop them in a vase – GENIUS! 




I was really impressed at how well the flowers had travelled, they arrived in impeccable condition and they’ve spent the last 7 days looking gorgeous in my lounge! Even my boyfriend commented on how pretty they were and he can be a bit of a ‘Bah Humbug’ when it comes to flowers! The roses only took a few hours to start to open and the lilies took about 3 days to start to open up. They’ve been going strong for a total of eight days and are just starting to show signs of giving up, which is commendable. All the bouquets from Blossoming Gifts are designed to be beautiful and affordable, this bouquet would only set you back £40 and it really is exquisite. 




If you’ve fallen in love with these flowers as much as me, you’re in luck! If you’re interested in trying out Blossoming Gifts for yourself – I have good news! All my readers can save a whopping 33% off by entering ‘BGIFTS33’ at the checkout. This code will give readers 33% off all flowers other than those in the 'flowers by post' page. If that wasn’t enough to get you excited, Blossoming Gifts are also giving you the chance to win your own bunch of flowers! Blossoming Gifts are giving my readers the chance to win their very own bouquet, one lucky person will be able to pick any bouquet worth up to £35! All you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form below. You will need to be following Hope, Freedom, Love on Bloglovin’ and you will need to supply an email address. By entering the competition you are agreeing to be signed up to Blossoming Gifts newsletter, where you will receive promotional emails. Good luck, full T&C's are below! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Terms and conditions! The giveaway prize consists of one bouquet worth up to £35 from Blossoming Gifts. At the end of the giveaway one winner will be chosen and they can pick any in stock bouquet, worth up to £35 from the website. The giveaway will be running until Monday 30th January at midnight and you can enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. To be eligible to win you must be following my blog via Bloglovin and enter your email address on the Rafflecopter widget. By entering the competition you are agreeing for your email address to be used in the Blossoming Gifts Mailing List, where you will receive the Blossoming Gifts Newsletter to your inbox. There are additional entries if you follow via Twitter and Instagram, visit Facebook pages or tweet about the competition. Entry is limited to UK residents.The prize was donated by the wonderful Blossoming Gifts team for a giveaway. 

Monday, 16 January 2017

I love Spring time and I especially love Spring makeup, so this time of year is right up my street! One of my favourite brands from 2016 Pixi by Petra, has just released their latest collection for Spring Summer 2017. The new collection is actually quite big and it includes lots of lovely new products.




There are new lip balms, palettes, blushers and kabuki brushes. The new collection is available right now and I’m here to give you the low down on the bits you need to try…





The famous Endless Silky Eye Pen* (£12 here) has been released in a new matte formulation, with new shades for Spring. It’s a waterproof, pigmented pencil, which gives you great colour payoff. It means that you can just apply it once and you’re good to go. There are two new shades - Matte Khaki which is a lovely green hue and there's Matte Mulberry, which is pictured here. I’ve been using this beautiful brown purple hue close to the lash line on the eyelid and then extending it through the bottom waterline. It gives you great definition whether you’re creating a subtle smokey eye, or creating a dramatic tightline. It’s very gentle on the eye, designed for people who suffer with sensitive eyes. The addition of Vitamin E nourishes and protects the skin around the eye, whilst Mica provides natural looking luminosity. 



The Correction Concentrate* (£14 here) is another fabulous Pixi product and it’s been released in a brand new shade - Awakening Apricot. This concealer arrives in a handy pot and it’s a highly pigmented concealer, which you use for correcting the skin. It’s designed to erase dark circles and blur any fine lines around the eye. The new shade has been designed for olive skintones who need to need help neutralized discolouration. Simply tap it into the after your foundation and before your concealer – you can use it around your eyes, nose and mouth. 




The Gel Tint & Silk Gloss* (£14 here) is a new Pixi product, on one side you have a lip stain and on the other you have a gloss. The product is designed to be the perfect pair, the lip tint gives you long lasting colour and the gloss keeps your lips lusciously hydrated. You can use either of the products on their own, or layer them together to bring your lips to life. Pixi even recommend using the tint on your cheeks as a pretty rosy blusher. I have the shade SweetGloss & BerryTint which are two pretty pink/nude shades. 




I've swatched some of these lovely products for you below. As you can see the Endless Silky Eye Pen is a such a lovely purple tone and the Gel Tint & Silk Gloss is a perfect handbag essential. As I mentioned, all these pretty new products are available right now! You can pick them up in the London Pixi Boutique, the Pixi Website and at Marks & Spencer



Friday, 13 January 2017

It’s the new year and I’m not sure about everyone else, but my skin needs some serious TLC! Booster Shots were a bit of a “thing” in 2016, but they were always too expensive for me. So I was super excited to see that one of my favourite brands, Nip+Fab, have created a range of lovely Booster Shots. The Booster Shots are designed to complement any skincare routine, as you can use them to provide extra treatments to your existing products. You simply use these on their own, or mix them with your your serum or moisturiser! Nip + Fab have released four different booster shots, so there is probably a fix for everyone.




The four shots have everything you could ever need! First up there’s the Viper Venom Fix Blurring Shot (£24.95 here), which is designed to blur out your pores and smoothe out any lines. It includes Syn-Ake, soft focus powders and a tightening complex – you just pop two drops into your product to achieve flawless, silky-smooth skin. Next up we have the Bee Sting Fix Repairing Shot (£24.95 here) which is the repairing and conditioning boost for your skin. This is a lightweight, nourishing oil especially designed for repairing dry skin. Pick this shot if you have damaged or dry skin – the mix of bee venom, royal jelly and hyaluronic acid, will hydrate, condition and plump the skin. The third Booster Shot is the Kale Fix Protecting Shot (£24.95 here). The kale shot is fantastic for protecting your skin from pollution, which can really harm the skin. This one is a blend of Kale plus vitamins B5, C and E – add two drops of this oil to your skin for a boost of nourishment and defence. 

The last Booster Shot is the one I have here and it’s the Glycolic Fix Instant Radiance Shot* (£19.95). I picked this one to try as it’s just what I need at this time of year! Inside the shot you find glycolic acid (which is great for retexturing and resurfacing the skin), a blend of fruit acids (which stimulate skin cell renewal) and finally we have amino acid derivatives (which reduce the appearance of pigmentation). This Booster Shot is a fast track to radiance and luminosity. The blend of exfoliating acids help your skin to regenerate and leave you with a gorgeous, natural luminescent glow. The addition of aloe vera and allantoin, protect the skin from becoming sore after the treatment. The Booster Shot itself is actually a pretty pearlescent blue shade, which turns into a golden glow when applied to the skin.
for the skin. 




If you hadn’t guessed already, I’m in love with these Booster Shots! I love that you could own them all, simply swapping them in and out of your routine depending on your needs. I also love that you don’t need to have loads of different products, you could have a very simply routine which you just bring to life with these lovely shots! Check out the shots on the Nip & Fab website, they are celebrating the launch with loads of exciting offers throughout January! Buy the NEW Viper Venom Fix Blurring Shot before January 17th and receive the Viper Venom Night as a free gift worth £19.95! Just enter the code: VNIGHT at the checkout. Get shopping here

Thursday, 12 January 2017

I spent a lot of time last year praising the Bouclème brand – as a curly hair lady I quickly became one of the brands biggest fans! The collection by Bouclème is a revolutionary new range, designed by fellow curl sister Michele Scott-Lynch. She was fed up with the dull, lack-luster, disappointing products on the market and had a desire to a range of products that delivered healthy, frizz free curls, without using nasty and artificial ingredients. Thirty years of curl struggle inspired Michele to create Bouclème, which features curl products without using sulphate and silicone, or products that strip away moisture and weigh down the hair.




The latest product to land in the Bouclème world is the Bouclème Curl Cream*. It’s made with coconut oil, coconut fruit extract, kukui oil, shea butter and castor oil – which creates a new nourishing and moisture replenishing product. The cream is a very versatile and really does it all you need it to do, reviving lacklustre curls by injecting shine into the hair. It’s also designed to banishes frizz, leaving curls smooth and bouncy.

What I really love about this product is that it is multi-purpose, you can either apply it on wet hair as a styler or you can apply it on wet hair with the Bouclème Curl Defining Gel for a medium hold. Most importantly (in my eyes at least) is that you can also apply this product into dry hair on day two or three curls, so that you can bring them back to life again. As somebody who has searched the internet tirelessly, I can tell you it’s incredibly hair to find a product that works on both wet and dry hair! For someone who travels as much as me it’s a godsend – as I just want one product to pack that works for the whole time I’m away, rather than travelling with three different things. 

Bouclème strongly believes in the power of nature, so all of their products are created without chemical nasties. Even the preservative used is eco certified and they use fair trade products wherever possible, to ensure that farmers get their fair share! The products are also tested on curls, not animals! The Bouclème Curl Cream is available now, priced at £19 (you can buy it here)

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

If you’re a frequent reader here on Hope, Freedom, Love – you’ll know that I’m highlighter obsessed! The more highlighters I have in my collection, the happier I am (sad but true)! This means that I buy and try a lot of different highlighters, some which impress me more than others. One product that I’ve tried a lot of are cream highlighter sticks – there are a lot of these available on the high street, so I like to test them and see which ones really offer value for money. Some cream highlighters offer a subtle approach, some focus on bronzing and some are for the hard-core strobe addicts. If you fall into that last category, you need to keep reading… 




In 2016 Maybelline worked hard to bring the market budget contouring options, that honestly offered some real bang for buck. Some of them completely blew me away – namely the Contour V Sticks (read my review here) and the Bronzing Brick (read my review here). The newest kid on the block are the Maybelline Master Strobe Sticks*, aiming to bring something more iridescent to the market. The Strobe Sticks arrive in glitzy silver and black packaging, neatly finished with black lettering. The stick itself is larger than others on the market, offering a product that works well on the cheekbones. 




The Maybelline Master Strobe Sticks are available in two different shades – ‘Light’ is a more pink shade and ‘Medium’ is more of a golden shade. My personal favourite is the pink shade, as I think it’s so versatile and pretty – plus as you see by the swatches, Medium is quite orange on my skin. One stroke of the highlighter adds a pretty, dewy glow – simply tap in the colour with your cheekbones for an intense glow, or blend with a brush for something more subtle. The formula is very creamy and it includes micro-fine pearls, which give a lovely iridescent finish on the skin. I simply swipe this onto my cheekbones, down the middle of my nose and then use a brush to add highlight to the brow bone!

The Maybelline Master Strobe Sticks are just beautiful and for £6.99, I don’t think you can go wrong! Well done Maybelline! 



Tuesday, 10 January 2017

2016 definitely saw the world descend into a bit of a crazy place, we all know about all the lows and to be frank I think most of us have spent an hour in front of the news in tears. On a more personal level I had a really fantastic 2016, I concurred fears, I changed jobs and I created some fantastic memories! So I thought it was incredibly important to document my highs from the year. I encourage you to do the same, because (I can't say this without sounding a bit preachy) it’s such a lovely enlightening experience!




Visiting Las Vegas
Last year I was sent to Las Vegas with work and I really didn’t want to go. In fact, if I could have paid someone to take my place I would have! Low and behold it was actually the most fantastic experience! I love being there, I loved the atmosphere and I just felt like I was in the movies the whole time. Seeing the Bellagio Fountains was weirdly emotion and I was very excited to visit my third M&M world. We stayed in The Paris Hotel, which of course has a replica Eiffel Tower and I loved walking round all the hotels! I’m actually going back to Las Vegas this year but my man is coming with me, so I can’t wait to show him the sights! 

Learning how to play Craps in San Diego 
Straight after Las Vegas we went over to San Diego for a larger conference. San Diego is a beautiful place and being by the water always makes up for the fact you’re missing home. Most the trip includes ‘death by PowerPoint’ but we had one social evening where we went to the San Diego Baseball Stadium. Whilst we were there we had a fake Casino and we were taught how to play craps! We had the best instructors who taught us the game so well and it’s so much fun! It certainly helps when luck is on your side! 




Turning 24 (and discovering cocktails)
I had a very low key birthday in 2016, but everything we did was just perfect! It started with Birthday pancakes, ended with Birthday steak and included cocktails! What else do I realistically need? This year I really fell in love with cocktails, I’ve really enjoyed experimenting and not just ordering the house Rose. 

A cultured day in London 
This year I wanted to make a conscious effort to say yes to more things! I’ve always been a bit of a home fan and my IBS makes me incredibly nervous to travel. One of my beautiful friends is always such a busy bee and she inspires me to do more with my days. I still have a long way to go, but I really enjoyed a day in London with her in March. We had a yummy breakfast, wondered around the Tate Modern and I discovered Wahaca! She taught me that even new friends will understand when you’re not feeling best – you don’t have to hide at home! I feel truly blessed to have her in my life! 




We brought a car
I’m not a car fan, I don’t even have a driving license (I know, I know). However my other half is a bit of a car nerd and he’s always dreamt of owning a BMW. We chanced nipping into the garage one random day and it turned out we could not only afford one, but we could afford a brand new one and it’s pretty damn nifty. It’s not my thing, but it made him incredibly happy and it meant the world to him.

Joining the Really Ree collective
It’s not every day that you get offered the chance to review beauty products for one of the biggest beauty blogs on the planet! This year I’ve had so much fun reviewing products for the lovely Really Ree – I get to try loads of fabulous products, write some beauty content and I get to be part of a big beauty family! Thank you Ree and Rebecca!




Seeing Adele live 
If I was to name a musical idol it would always be Adele! Her albums give me a life and they’ve got me through some pretty shitty moments. We really had to battle the online queues to get tickets in London, but on our fourth attempt we got them! It was the most magical night and I may have shed just a couple of tears! I actually have tickets to see her again this year and I feel so lucky to be going again!

Reaching 1000 followers
I am a big believer that numbers don’t make and break a blog, but reaching 1000 followers felt like a big old milestone to me! I’m forever blessed to have this blog and I’m so thankful for every reader and every brand that chooses to work with me! Thank you! 



Heading on holiday with my sister 
In May we rented an apartment with my sister and her boyfriend, speeding off to Center Parcs for a lovely week break! I’ve never had a holiday with my sister and brother-in-law but it was truly the most beautiful week. Center Parcs is one of ‘happy places’, you’re surrounded by forests and the water, which just makes me feel so calm. Getting some real quality time with my little sister is so important to me and she’s a big inspiration in my life! We really didn’t want to come home! 



Exploring our local countryside
After leaving Center Parcs I found myself really craving nature, it was a weird feeling which I’ve never had before, I just wanted to be out the house! So we jumped in the house, drove towards the water and explored! We walked along the river, took pictures of swans, ate strawberries and watched the water rafters. It was such a lovely afternoon!

Getting a new job (and being promoted twice!) 
I was deeply unhappy at work and was really craving a change! I’m one of those people who needs to enjoy getting up in the morning and I’d really lost my mojo. At the start of the year I had decided it was time for a change, but I wasn’t ready yet to leave the company that I know and love. A job came up, I applied, I got offered the job! It was a complete change of role and all I needed was someone to believe in me. I’m so happy in my new role and it’s really changed my life, my happiness and my mental state! My lovely old colleagues through me a lovely party and we all got very tipsy on Mojitos in the office, it was the exact send off I needed and I love them for it! 



A refresh in Spain
Despite the fact I picked up gastroenteritis, we had a lovely week in Spain in August. It had been a crazy year to date and I really needed a week to chill out. We rented a villa and we just chilled by the pool, ate BBQ food and swam to our hearts content. 



A day at London Zoo
I actually met my man at London Zoo and it holds such happy memories for me! Seeing the lions and penguins turns me into a big kid – it’s just so much fun! We headed to London Zoo in September with my sister and brother-in-law, again we had such a lovely day. I wish I could see the penguins every damn day!



Afternoon Tea, the London Eye and yummy food
I really enjoy working with buyagift.com and this year I reviewed three gift ideas for them, as part of my Christmas gifting reviews. It meant that I got to go to London with my man and experience the gifts in person! We had Afternoon Tea at the Wardolf, had a spin on the London Eye and had a four course meal at Zizzi Italian. It’s so important to take those days with your loved ones, I’ll treasure the memories and the pictures forever. 

A busy old Christmas 
My favourite Christmas’ are the ones where you stay at home in your PJs and don’t move for three weeks. This Christmas was a little bit busier than that, in fact, I didn’t spend a single day in my PJs – but I think it’s worth it! We had a lovely Christmas Day at home, boxing day with family, a fake Christmas with my sister and brother-in-law and New Years Eve with more family (we finished roughly eight bottles of fizz). I also got to reconnect with an old special friend of mine, had a Jamie’s Italian with one of my best ladies and had a pre-Christmas gift exchange with my work wives. All-in-all it was busy, but it was fun filled! 



Let me know what you’re favourite moments of the year were below, it’s so important to take a day to remember the happy moments!
 
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