Wednesday, 21 November 2012

A Perfume Secret!

Happy Wednesday to you all! :) Half-way through the week, and the weekend is vastly approaching, yay!

Today I want to do a post all about perfumes. I know the last post I put up was also about perfumes, but this one is a little different. I want to talk to you all about a site called the 'Perfume Parlour'. Basically, it's an online store which sells pure perfume oils. I first heard about them when I was working in a beauty salon near to where I live, and we actually got these perfume oils in and sold them as retail- they went down an absolute storm! 

The website is really informative as they explain to us more about the perfume industry and why we should be buying pure perfume oils as opposed to expensive branded perfumes off of the high street which are not only watered down, low quality and low lasting, they are a complete and utter rip off. Now, I am not telling you to stop buying perfumes and switch to this, as I myself, continue to buy perfumes from the high street. But this is something to make you a little more aware of what actually goes on with perfumes from these big branded companies and why it may be a good idea to occasionally opt for a cheaper alternative to that £50 designer bottle of perfume.

In the UK alone, Brits spend a whopping £640m a year on perfume, and over half this amount is generated at Christmas alone. What you need to know is that the liquid inside these fancy bottles, costs less than a pound to make. The rest of the amount we pay is to cover the over the top packaging, marketing and advertising costs. At the end of the day, I want a perfume that smells nice and is long lasting, but I don't really want to be paying £50 for something that only costs £1, and i'm sure you wouldn't either. 

Have you noticed the increased amount of celebrities launching their own brand perfumes? Why do you think that is? Quite simple, it is very, very profitable for them, they produce these perfumes for a very low cost and then sell them with a huge markup. The High street store Boots sells about 5000 bottles a day during peak seasons, 40% of these are celebrity owned perfumes. 

This is no exaggeration, Jennifer Lopez has reportedly made in the region of £25m since she launched her brand of perfumes 5 years ago starting with Glow.

Why am I telling you all this? Well...I don't want you to waste your hard earned cash on watered down perfumes, and fill the pockets of those who quite frankly already have a few million, if not more to their names already.

Apart from the fact that the high street perfumes are a rip off, the actual quality is not there either. I mean, how many times have you applied a heavily advertised perfume, which you really like, but it only lasts a couple of hours? NO GOOD! The reason why that happens is because the actual alcohol content is so high in these perfumes that it ends up killing off the perfume. Alcohol is not good for perfumes because it is a drying agent and it has a negative effect on the perfume but it has to be used in order to make the perfumes sprayable.

On the 'Perfume Parlour', you can find perfume oils for a fraction of the price, and they are also made using the same ingredients as some of the most popular brands on the high streey, so go and have a look for yourselves! :)

Lots of love,
Lauren. xx

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

My Favourite Perfumes

Hi everyone, today I'll be doing a post on my top perfume picks. Perfume is just one of those things I adore. I'm not here to say that everyone will love these fragrances  as some of you may not- perfume is just such a personal thing. I'm one of those girls who's a sucker for a sickly sweet scent, such as vanilla. Although, I do really enjoy wearing more muskier fragrances too, especially on a night out.

First up, I will start with one of my all time favourites. Juicy Couture 'Viva La Juicy'. This is such a popular perfume, and a favourite with many. I think I am onto my 3rd or 4th bottle. I also bought a set in Florida which had 2 mini, hand-bag sized ones too, so yeah, I guess it could be a slight obsession! Overall, I do love the Juicy Couture brand, aside from their tracksuits. Although they seem to be so popular, I find them a little overrated and tacky. Their handbags are gorgeous though, and last year treated myself to one and I'm still in love with it to this day! Anyway, getting a little off track here, back to the perfume! Okay, so the main ingredient in 'Viva La Juicy' is red berries. It contains some really sweet-smelling ingredients such as vanilla and caramel. But also contains jasmine, sandalwood and mandarin. I really would encourage you to pop into a department store such as Debenhams or John Lewis and give it a smell if you haven't tried it before. It is a fairly strong scent, so if you do prefer lighter, fresher smelling frangrances- this maybe isn't for you. I would say it sways more to a night time scent due to the strength of the scent, although I wear it both day and night because I love it so much. You don't need to keep applying it through out the day either- once you have sprayed it- it really will last all day long. 

If you do like the scent but would prefer it in a much more lighter and fresher scent- then fear not! Juicy Couture has brought out 'Viva La Juicy La Fleur'. Made with white berries instead of red- making it a more delicate scent. It's also more of a floral scent in comparison with the sweet, fruitiness of the original 'Viva La Juicy. 

 Viva La Juicy- from £29.00 

    Viva La Juicy La Fleur- from £23.00

Another favourite of mine is one of those perfumes I have just worn constantly since I was a young teenager. I love how certain perfumes can bring back memories and this one brings back loads of good memories from my teenage years- it's the famous Britney Spears- Fantasy. I'm sure this is a perfume lots of you girls wore throughout your childhood- it seemed like it was everyone's favourite perfume for years! I love both the original Fantasy, as well as Midnight Fantasy- both smell lovely, not to mention the gorgeous jeweled bottles they come in! The original Fantasy scent contains jasmine, white orchid, kiwi and musk. The Midnight Fantasy fragrance is much more fruitier in comparison- with notes of black cherry, plum, vanilla and amber, it really is a sweet and fruity perfume. Both these fragrances are easy to get hold of and are available in stores such as Superdrug and Boots- as well as online and in department stores. If you are a fan of these perfumes, they have just brought out a combination of the two, called Fantasy Twist! It's a sphere shaped bottle which splits in half. Half Fantasy, other half, Midnight Fantasy. You get 30ml of each fragrance so it's perfect if you want the best of both worlds without paying for 2 separate bottles!

Britney Spears 'Fantasy'- from £17.00

Britney Spears 'Midnight Fantasy'- from £15.00

Britney Spears 'Fantasy Twist'- £25.50

I had been wanting to try out the famous 'Pink Sugar' perfume by Aquolina. It seems to be so popular, especially across in the States, but being in the UK, it isn't as readily available. I first tried it in a Sephora store on holiday. WOW, this perfume is divine! It's just my kind of scent. It smells of all things sweet and sugary (hence the name!) The packaging is very eye catching- very cute and girly. Now, although I do tend to sway more towards sweeter fragrances, this is VERY sweet so you do only need a tiny spray and that will last you from day into evening. It is a little on the pricey side, but since you only need to use a small amount, the bottle will last you for ages. When it's first sprayed, you get a strong candyfloss smell, but this calms down to a more creamier vanilla scent. If you like that sweet, cupcake sort of smell, this is worth a try. Although it isn't a perfume I wear every single day, I do still love it and definitely deserves it's place in my top favourite perfumes!

Aquolina 'Pink Sugar'- from £30.00

Last, but by no means least is the final favourite in my top perfumes. It's Marc Jacob's 'Daisy- Eau So Fresh'. Now I know this is completely different to the sweet, sugary perfumes I have spoke about up until now and I genuinely surprised myself that I loved this scent so much. Floral's are usually my least favourite fragrance but for some reason, I absolutely love this! The original 'Daisy' perfume is a little too strong for my liking, and much prefer this lighter scent. The bottle is what caught my eye in the first place. A stunning bottle with a large daisy for the lid and it's pink! It's just everything girly. With notes of pear, raspberry, grapefruit and plum, it definitely contains that fruityness I love in perfumes- which I think is the main reason I love it so much. It's a perfect perfume to wear everyday and again, it's really long lasting! I love when you can still smell your perfume hours after you sprayed it, and it still smells just as good! 

Marc Jacobs 'Daisy Eau So Fresh'- from £47.50

Okay, so that's a list of my favourite perfumes! I could list SO many more but wanted to keep it nice and short. Like I said, I know these perfumes aren't to everyone's taste but I love trying out new perfumes, especially if it's one I didn't think I'd particularly enjoy, you never know, you might be pleasantly surprised! Let me know what your favourite perfumes are! :) 

Lots of Love

Lauren. xx

Monday, 19 November 2012

Rambling Mondays!

Afternoon everyone! Hope you all had a lovely weekend :) I feel like I've been on the go non-stop since Friday! I've been slaving over a hot stove cooking up some tasty treats. On Saturday my family had a small birthday meal for my dad. I made a delicious Thai green curry followed by a dessert of white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake- all made from scratch. I was rather impressed with the turn out if I do say so myself. Cooking is another passion of mine, although Jamie Oliver, I am not. I wish I was one of those amazingly fantastic cooks though.

Sunday consisted of me going out to work to do a few bits and bobs. I don't usually work weekends, however, there is the odd occasion I need to pop out for an hour or so to get things done. For those of you who don't know, I work on a Royal Marine base. I love my job (It's basically a 2 minute drive from where I live so means I can roll out of bed at half 7 in time for starting at 8!) In all seriousness though, I have a huge amount of respect for anyone who risks there own lives in order to defend our country. I work in the Naafi (which is basically just the shop) and hear the most amazing stories about being out at war and some of the things these people have gone through is incredible. I do occasionally do bar work too if there is a function on, so bits and pieces here and there.

I feel like Monday is my day for rambling the most random things?! Maybe it's because I don't tend to get time to blog over the weekend so feel like I need to talk to you all and let you all know what's been going on- I don't know. But I hope you don't mind these kind of posts. 

I'm trying to re-assess my blog and see what I'd like to do with it. I love blogging so, so much. But I feel as though my blog, being called 'The Beauty Box' limits my posts to being solely about, well, beauty. I'd like to do more posts about just life in general as well as beauty too. What d'you guys think?! Let me know! :)

Last night me and my boyfriend had a lovely, well-deserved cosy night in, snuggled up in front of the t.v for hours on end. We watched Home Alone! I love those films and it has got me feeling so Christmassy! To make things even better, Fred Clause is on next Sunday which I will definitely be tuning in to watch. I could sit and watch Christmas movies all day long. They are such happy, feel good movies which just make you smile from ear to ear. It's strange too because although I have watched Home Alone along with every other Christmas film a zillion times, and probably own most of them on DVD, I will still look forward to watching them when they are played on tv, does anyone else do this?! Strange! 

Anyway, I feel like I am rambling on a little bit so will love you and leave you all there. Please let me know if you would like more personal blog posts- I really want to give you guys exactly what you want to read! :)

Lots of love- 

Lauren. xx

Thursday, 15 November 2012

My Winter Essentials

Hello again ladies! Yet another blog post from me today (too much time on my hands this afternoon and far too cold to venture off outside!) This is going to be my essentials for this Winter!

First up is a good lip balm! I don't suffer from chapped lips but they do tend to go that little bit drier over the Winter months so I like to keep them hydrated with a good lip balm. My favourite's are ones from the company Balmi. If you have ever saw/tried the lip balms from EOS- then they are pretty much identical. I bought two EOS lip balms when I was in America and although I did really like them at first, they seemed to go off and begin to taste odd really quickly! I know they are such a popular brand and their products are lovely but I maybe just had bad luck with the ones I got! Anyway, Balmi is basically just an identical balm to EOS. The whole concept is the same, except, the Balmi lip products have the most delicious smell/taste to them and it really lasts! I first tried them when my mum received a blackcurrant one in her Joliebox. I loved it so much that I went out and bought my own! Mines is in the flavour raspberry- they also do them in mint, coconut, strawberry, and of course blackcurrant. Really hydrating on the lips as well as making them taste delicious all day long. 10/10 product for me! 

Balmi lip balms- £4.99 Boots

Another essential for me this Winter is candles! Nothing can beat a lovely smelling candle on these cold, dark nights. I have loads of candles that I love using and it's difficult to just choose one! Yankee candles are a fantastic brand and the quality of these candles are so high. I really love the Vanilla and Lime one and Christmas Cookies, which is just the same fragrance as Vanilla Cupcake! They also do reed diffusers and car air-fresheners in the scents of their candles too which I love! Lily Flame is probably my ultimate favourite candle brand though. I buy mine from Amazon and they range in price- anywhere from about£7-£10. My favourite scent is 'Fairy Dust'. This is the perfect girly scent! It smells really sweet and sugary but also has a tiny hint of a perfume and powdery scent too, it's gorgeous!

Lily Flame candle in 'Fairy Dust'- £8 Amazon

I like to use a nice, thick body butter on my skin during Winter to keep my skin soft, and hydrated. Again, I have many favourites when it comes to body butters. Soap & Glory's famous 'Righteous Butter' is a winner with many people, and I too really love it. It has that signature Soap & Glory scent to it, its non greasy and leaves your skin feeling ahhhmazing! Body Shop body butters are again, another firm favourite with many, but they can be a little bit on the pricey side. A good cheaper alternative is the Boots own brand. They do a range of products and part of their line is body butters. They are a nice, thick consistency and smell divine. My favourite has to be the 'Mango and orange blossom'. It just smells like a really creamy mango sorbet or yoghurt, it's lovely! I used it throughout Summer, and it worked really nicely on my skin, so I have re-purchased it for Winter too! Although it's not a very wintery scent, it's still really nice and fresh, and leaves your skin smelling like mango's all day long!

Mango & Orange blossom body butter- £3.05 Boots

Although it's not necessarily something that should be done in only Winter, I like to use a good hair mask to keep it silky and soft and this Winter I have really been enjoying keeping my hair in good condition. I have been using the Dove hair care line and really can't fault it! It smells heavenly! I use their colour radiance shampoo and conditioner, followed by the intensive treatment a couple of times per week. My hair is in the best condition yet and I think it is down to these little miracle workers! 

Dove hair therapy in colour radiance- starting from £2.49

My final essential for Winter is none other than a good hot chocolate! I'm not a huge tea or coffee drinker so for me, hot chocolate is my Winter drink! Of course it has to include some whipped cream and marshmallows too right?! 

mmmm, yummy!

What are you all loving this Winter?

Lots of Love,
Lauren. xx

Guide To: Christmas Shopping Online

Yes that's right- I have started blogging about Christmas before we have even hit December! I am such a lover of Christmas though- forever a big kid at this time of year! In this blog I want to give you a help with your Christmas shopping to make it easier for you to relax and enjoy the run up to Christmas day.

I am already underway with this years shopping and although I wish I had been this ultra prepared years ago, in truth I haven't, but learned the hard way! I'm one of those people who can spend weeks looking online at presents but keep holding off actually buying incase I see something else I'd rather get. This then makes it too late for ordering anything from the internet, as you always need to allow for longer delivery time during December with the Christmas rush and then you need to make a decision- do you risk ordering something and it not being here in time for Christmas, or do you just leave it and go into town to face the mad last minute shoppers in the hope you will manage to pick up something decent that hasn't already sold out? Neither of these options sound appealing to me, yet every year up til now, it's something I've always had to ask myself. 

So basically, if you're like me and prefer to do most/all of your Christmas shopping from the comfort of your cosy home, then I would seriously recommend that you start soon if not now! The reason I say this is because most websites have all their good deals for Christmas up during the month of November but then remove them throughout December. This basically is just a way for them to make a lot of money over the festive period. Also, by ordering gifts now, you get first pick of what you want to order and don't have to worry too much about 'out of stock' items. A few good websites and deals I have been loving and buying from right now are - I know this is just Superdrug and you can pop into your local store. The reason I have used their website is because my local store is tiny and doesn't stock their full range of products, so for me, online is better. They have a wide range of Christmas gift sets and fragrance gift sets- definitely worth a look.

Current Offers:
- 3 for 2 across all lashes and cosmetics.
- Free standard delivery on all orders up until the 4th December.
- Better than half price across selected fragrances.
- 3 for 2 across selected Christmas gift sets.
- They also have offers across selected hair care and skin care if you need to stock up for the festive period. - Again, this is purely just because my local Boots store hasn't got a wide variety to choose from so I do prefer the online shop for certain things.

Current Offers: 
- The famous 3 for 2 mix and match across toys and gift sets.
- Up to half price off over selected fragrances.
- Savings on electrical products.

The 3 for 2 on gift sets is always so popular and tends to sell out really quickly. The products and discounts are always really good value for money and this year is no different. I would really encourage you to pop across to their website and have a good look around- there is definitely something for everyone. - You can find everything on here! From beauty to clothing, toys, shoes and electrical's, this place has it all. 

Current Offers:
- Free standard delivery on all orders
- Up to half price on women's dresses (Perfect for the party season)
- Up to 25% off every department
- 10% off all beauty and fragrance - Perfect no matter what you are searching for! You can always grab a bargain as well as find some really quirky gifts. I love browsing on here and seeing what interesting things I can find! - Okay so this is just your standard go to website! Amazon has everything and at really affordable prices too! One of my favourite websites!

So I hope this has helped a little with your Christmas shopping, or maybe you just want to take advantage of these different offers for yourself. I have definitely been making the most of Superdrug's 3 for 2 across cosmetics and lashes- stocking up for all those Christmas parties! Let me know your favourite place to shop for Christmas- I'd love to hear from you!

Upcoming Festive Blog Posts
(Don't worry, there will be PLENTY of non-festive posts in between, I just thought I'd carry the theme on in this post and let you know what to expect from my blog from now until Christmas)

- Christmas Gift Guide: Present idea's for him and for her.
- Festive Fashion: Idea's to get you ready for that Christmas party.
- Festive Giveaway: To thank all of the lovely people who support my blog.
- Christmas Shopping Haul: To show you all what I have bought for my loved ones this year.
- Bake With Me: Baking up some tasty festive treats.
- My Top Christmas Movies: self-explanatory!

If you have any more requests, let me know!

Lots of love,
Lauren xx

Saturday, 10 November 2012

My October Joliebox

Afternoon ladies!

So I mentioned in yesterday's blog that I'd be doing a review on my first ever Joliebox which I received towards the end of October. I figured this would be the best time to give a good thorough review as I've been testing out the products for almost a full month now.

Okay, so first up, was the Jason- 'Lips Bee Healthier' lip balm. This smells exactly like After Eight chocolate mints, mmm! I have never heard of the brand Jason before but that's partly why I enjoy these beauty boxes so much. You learn about brands that you typically wouldn't buy. Jason is a natural beauty company and their products are free of parabens, lanolin, 
petroleum and all other fillers- so this product is 100% natural. The lip-balm uses beeswax and vitamin E to help re-hydrate lips. I did find it really moisturising and has been preventing my lips from getting dried out during the cold weather. It feels lovely when applied to the lips and isn't greasy at all! Great product. 

Jason 'Lips Bee Healthier' Beeswax Lip balm 

The next product I received in my box was the 'Lov is beautiful' organic teabags. The tea is made up with a blend of natural peach, mango, apricot and pineapple. The tea bag itself is made from muslin cloth and can be re-used 2-3 times depending on how strong you like your tea. It is also full of skin boosting anti-oxidants which is a bonus. They are available in other blends too: 
'Love is Zen'
'Lov is Good'
'Lov is Pure' 

'Lov is Beautiful' organic tea bags.

I received a sample for Iroisie's 'Soin Parfait Ultimate BB Cream'. Although this is designed as an anti-aging BB cream, it is suitable for all ages. It is made from natural pigments and has an SPF of 25- which is fantastic. BB creams can be used as a primer, concealer, foundation- or all 3. It is designed to re-hydrate the skin, hide any blemishes, smooth out the look of fine lines and hides tired looking skin, making it look radiant and flawless. I like how you can build up the coverage if you need a little bit extra, or you can wear it light but it still keeps your skin looking great. It also has powerful anti-oxidants which can help treat blemish-prone skin. 

Iroisie 'Soin Parfait Ultimate BB Cream'

I received a full size exfoliating product. It is the Ritessens Exfoliating, Regenerating Facial Care. Again, another natural product which uses the benefits from plants as the ingredients. High in argan oil, this exfoliator deeply cleans the skin without stripping it of it's natural oils. It smell's very fresh and clean. My skin feels refreshed but still moisturised after using this. The exfoliator itself is very light and gentle and leaves the skin looking lovely and radiant. 

Ritessens Exfoliating, Regenerating facial care.

The final product in my box was The Green Balm from the brand MOA. It can be used by the whole family, even those with super sensitive skin. It's an all round balm, and can be used to treat dry skin, burns or scarring. The balm is infused with organic yarrow which works wonders in repairing everything from ashy elbows and knees, irritated cuticles and brittle hair. Again, the product smells lovely and fresh. I did find it was a little greasy when applied, however if you are using it to treat a skin-condition I would recommend that you apply it at night to allow it to absorb right into the skin and work it's wonders. 

Moa- The Green Balm

So that's my round-up of October's Joliebox. I'm already excited to see what November's box holds! Let me know if you'd like to see more posts like this- reviewing my monthly boxes? Let me know in the comments below!

Hope your having a lovely weekend everyone! xx

Friday, 9 November 2012

My thoughts: Beauty Boxes

Happy Friday to you all! :) 

I have been thoroughly into my blogging this week and wanted to continue with a 'my thoughts' post. Today I want to share with you my opinions on the ever popular craze of the beauty boxes. 

Now I know everyone has mixed opinions on them, but I just want to share with you my experiences, to give help to those maybe questioning whether or not it's something they want to go for. I'm giving my 100% honest opinion on this so I won't lie to you and say it's the most amazing thing ever and well worth the money etc, because in reality, you don't always get the fantastic high end products that they promise to give you, but then again, sometimes they do- it's simply just pot luck and that's part of the risk to buying into something like this.

I spent ages researching all the different beauty boxes on the market when I was first looking to try them out. I watched endless YouTube videos and blog reviews to see which one gave you the best value for money. At the time I was looking, I got the impression that it was Glossybox who seemed to be the most popular choice- so I decided to give it ago. I must add, if you are thinking about giving the beauty boxes a try, don't worry about having to sign up for so many months, because you're not. In fact, you can just sign up for one month, receive your box and if you don't like it, unsubscribe and that's that. On the other hand, if you absolutely love your boxes, you can take out longer subscription if you wish, they also make great presents if you know someone who loves their beauty products.

So in April 2012 I signed up for my first Glossybox. When it came, I had a look through all the products and was fairly happy with it. I liked the idea of using products/brands that I wouldn't go out and buy myself on the high street, so it was nice to be able to try them out and found there were some I really liked. I received another 2 boxes after that before I unsubscribed. Now this wasn't for anything major. I know there is so many people who have been receiving Glossybox's for years and had no complaints. I just found them really unorganised with the dispatch of the boxes- payments would be taken at the beginning of the month and although they did give a date for them to be dispatched, they were always much later- sometimes even into the following month, before they got round to dispatching them. Then there was the issue of the products. Now I don't know what happened but I started to get products that I could go out and buy in Superdrug for a couple of pounds. This really just made me wonder whether or not I was really getting my money's worth- so I unsubscribed. Like I said, I know that Glossybox are a huge company now and thousands of people love all their boxes, but it just wasn't for me.

My mum has been receiving the Joliebox for about 6 or 7 months now and I always seem to really like the products she gets. Again, there is the odd product that makes me wonder why they put it in there when the rest of the products are so luxurious, but it doesn't happen nearly as often as the Glossybox. So last month I signed myself to Joliebox. They have recently joined up with the American beauty box company 'Birch box'. This is what swayed me to sign up as I'm such a big fan of Birch box but just can't get it here in the UK which I was gutted about. However now they are in collaboration with Jolie box to become one company which means even more products and brands available! My first box arrived in the post at the end of October and I am really pleased with the products inside. Now I won't go into too much detail about the products because I'd really like to do a separate post solely on the October Joliebox and more focused in on the products themselves and what I thought of them.

The beauty boxes are really pretty and girly and perfect for storage. I use mine to store things like nail varnishes, lip products, eyeshadows etc. Just keeps your make-up a little more organised. :) 

Another good thing I really like about the beauty boxes is that because their products are deluxe sample sizes, they are perfect to take away on holiday/weekend away. It's lovely to be able to take luxurious products away with you without breaking the bank paying for a full size one. 

I hope this has helped in some way or other if you are unsure about beauty boxes. Remember this is just my thoughts based on my own experiences and preference. If you are considering trying out a beauty box, do a little research on a few blogs, there are some brilliant YouTube video's on them too.

I have listed a few websites here too. Have a look on them to find out more about a particular box. You can find out what's been in past boxes, prices aswell as the product brands they use in their boxes.

Hope you enjoyed reading this, and have a fab weekend! :) xx

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Review: Soap & Glory 'Fab Pore' Facial Peel

So I mentioned the Soap & Glory 'Fab Pore' facial peel in my skin care routine and said that it would be featured in an upcoming review so, voila! Here it is. :) 

For those who are unfamiliar with the brand 'Soap & Glory' then it's basically a quirky cosmetics/skin care company that can be found in Boots or why not check out their online store at and have a browse through their products. They have really expanded this year and I'm excited to see how many different products they have to offer. You can find everything from cosmetics, bath and body care, skin care, gift sets and perfumes. 

They have a signature scent which features throughout most of their bath and body products and you can always find raving reviews on their famous body butters within the beauty community. 

When I first saw their skin care line in Boots just before summer I was keen to try it out. I purchased their 'Fab Pore' hot cloth cleanser, as well as the facial peel. The cleanser retails at £10 and has a gorgeous lavender scent to it. I was really impressed with the cleanser. However, the facial peel is what really stood out for me. It comes in a tub with 50ml of product. I know it seems like a small amount, but it really will last you for months as you just need the tiniest amount. I started using mine in June, and still have about a quarter of a tub left in November so it's worth the £8 price tag. 

When I think of 'facial peel' I get the image of a thin, clear, gel like mask but this product is just basically a face mask. It's a thick creamy consistency with tiny green beads throughout. As you massage the cream onto your face, the tiny beads burst which release their exclusive 'PoreShrink-R Complex' which basically just means, it's a pore tightening product, which is ideal for people with oily skin or T-zone. 

You can leave the mask on for a deep treatment for 15 minutes, this is supposed to be like giving yourself a mini facial. Alternatively, you can just have it on for 5 minutes as a 'refresher' to the skin. It has a lovely minty smell which tingles slightly leaving your face energised and awake. This should be repeated 2-3 times a week for maximum results. I found it made my skin a little less oily, and the over all experience with this product is amazing and lovely to use. Will definitely be re-purchasing this product when I have used my tub all up!
Soap & Glory 'Fab Pore' facial peel £8.00- Boots

Review: Revlon Colour Stay Foundation

A big hello to you all. :) I'm here today to give my review on the ever famous Revlon Colour Stay Foundation. Okay, so I'm just going to throw it out there and say that I really don't like this product. I know, I seem to the only person on the planet to be giving a negative review on this foundation. I honestly did want to love this product as much as everyone else and I had read some truly amazing reviews about it online but for some reason, I just couldn't work with it. 

I have bought it on two occasions. The first time was while I was on holiday a couple of years ago. I saw that it was on offer so I thought I'd give it ago and see what all the fuss was about. I had bought it in the shade 'Natural Tan' due to the fact that I was on holiday, and well, had a tan. The first thing I thought when I opened the bottle is it's just a like a bottle of paint. It smells like paint, has the thick consistency of paint and pours out everywhere like paint. I know the MAC foundations have the same bottle top, but I'm not a massive fan of those either. 

Still, I thought I'd keep going and give it a try and see how it applied to the face. After I had got over the strong stench of paint I found that it's really difficult to work with. It's full coverage and sets onto the face really quick- making it hard to blend in with your skin. It just feels like a mask over my face. I bought the combination/oily one as that is my skin type but I found it made me look even oilier. The lasting power wasn't great at all- after a day at work, I'd come home and even after setting with a powder, the foundation was all patchy and the majority of it had slid off  completely- not a good look at all. 

I have suffered with problematic skin in my early teens and although it's all under control now, this foundation broke me out like nothing on earth. I felt so self-conscious and just began to despise everything this foundation had to offer. I couldn't understand what I was doing wrong, but eventually just gave up on it.

Then, at the beginning of Winter, I thought I would try again. I was just my naturally pale colour so decided to go for the colour 'buff'. I don't know what made me think it would work good for me second time round, but I just wanted to feel those positive thoughts towards the foundation that everyone else has. But again, the lasting power was horrendous, so much product is wasted because there is no pump on the foundation and I just found it still didn't blend into my natural skin. No matter how quick I tried to buff it in, it never seemed quick enough and would leave that awful looking 'foundation line' at the jaw. 

The thing I find with this foundation is that it gives me a grey-ish tinge to my face. I don't know if it's the wrong tone colour for my skin but it couldn't look any less natural. I have now completely given up on this foundation and although I tried my hardest to work with it- it just seems impossible. I am so disappointed after I had read all the hype for this foundation and was claimed to be a dupe for Estee Lauder's Double Wear. I certainly wouldn't recommend this product, especially if you are used to wearing a much lighter, natural looking foundation.

Revlon Colour Stay foundation £12.49- Boots

Monday, 5 November 2012

All Things Nails!

Okay, so here is yet ANOTHER post all about nails! There seems to be such a hype around nail polishes right now, and I have to say, I'm loving it! I always notice other people's nails (wierd, I know!) But if they have a really cool design or colour, then it instantly draws my attention to them! 

I love how high street brands are bringing out their own take on some higher end nail products. If you live in the U.K, you may be familiar with the famous brand in Superdrug MUA. Basically, it's a SUPER affordable make up range starting from only £1! It's surprisingly good quality and even their 'professional' line is all really cheap priced too! They have their own version of the 'Caviar' nails, and it's supposed to be amazing! I have yet to try it out, as it isn't really convenient for my work, however I will definitely be picking one up next time I'm in Superdrug and no doubt I'll be getting plenty wear out of the Caviar nail design over the upcoming festive period! If you have tried it out, what are your thoughts? How long did it last on your nails?

MUA Caviar Nails (available in Superdrug)

Another nail polish look I'm obsessed with right now is all things glittery! In the past I have never been one to go out and buy a glittery polish, however, this season they seem to be everywhere! It always seemed to be higher end brands who would bring out glitter in the past, such as Nails Inc. That being said, I was in Tesco over the weekend and was browsing through the make-up aisle when I came across the famous high street brand, Rimmel, have brought out their own line of 'Precious Stone' sparkly nail polish! At £3.99, I had to pick one up and give it a try! I chose the colour 'Diamond Dust'. It's a really pretty gun-metal grey. In just 2 coats, this provides an opaque coverage to the nail which I thought was fantastic! However, I did apply my Sally Hansen 'Mega Shine' as a topcoat because you can feel the roughness of the glitter once it is applied. This can make it snag on things so just to create a smoother surface, I would definitely recommend a top coat! I got about 5 days wear out of it without any chips, which is good for a high street polish (a lot longer than my Barry M one's anyway) and then it was time for me to take it off. Eeek! Prepare to scrub your life away! This nail polish is the most difficult one I have EVER had to remove in my life! I spent a good 10 minutes scrubbing away trying to take it all off. If you can put aside that one minor fault, then I would really recommend you give this product a shot, especially over the Christmas period. It also comes in a glittery red colour which I am curious to try out also. Has anyone tried it? Would you say it was a nicer colour in comparison to the 'Diamond Dust' one? 

Monday, 29 October 2012

Review: N-Spa Melting Cleansing Gel

 Hello! :)

So this review is on a product which can be found in our local supermarket! The N-Spa range found in Asda has really stepped up lately. I have always been aware of the brand and tried out a few of their products. Nothing bad to say about them, but for a couple of pounds, you can't complain. I first tried their Sweet Treat bubble bath set a couple of years ago and would HIGHLY recommend anyone who likes yummy, sweet smelling treats! I got a set of 4- chocolate waffle, cranberry chocolate, hot butter fudge and gingerbread latte. Mmm, these smell divine! They were just small travel sized bottles, but you can buy them full sized too. 

N-spa bath syrup gift 4x100ml bottles £5.00- Asda

However, back on topic- I was shopping in Asda a couple of months ago and came across their new skin care line. It's far from your basic, get what you pay for, skin care. The products look SO much more expensive than what they are, and you can pick up everything from cleansers, toners, scrubs and moisturisers.

The melting cleansing gel really stood out for me. It is unlike any other cleansing product I have used in the past. It looks like an orange gel, and when you start to massage it into the face you can feel it melt and gets slightly warm! Nothing too drastic though, it just feels like a facial! I thought it would be quite greasy, but it isn't at all. It works amazingly on my skin, and I have combination skin, so I was quite concerned it would make me quite oily but when it washes off, it leaves your skin leaving so soft and really clean and fresh. To say I am impressed with this product would be a MASSIVE understatement. I would highly recommend to anyone looking to buy themselves a new cleanser and it's an absolute bargain at only £6! 

Next, I'm looking to try out their hot cloth cleanser, and see how it compares to the famous Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish! Has anyone tried it? If so, i'd love to hear your experiences with it! xx 

My Current Skin Care Routine

Okay, so I used to switch up my skin care routine A LOT during my teens. I would constantly buy new facial washes, cleansers and moisturisers as they came onto the market. I think this was mainly due to the fact that they all claimed to magically give you perfectly clear, flawless skin overnight- and with a statement like that, how is a young, impressionable teen supposed to refuse!? Anyway, I quickly realised that most of the time, these claims were nothing more than a marketing gimmick. I do have sensitive skin, so really wasn't doing myself any favors by slapping a different product onto my face every other week, not to mention a BIG waste of my money.

After a while, I realised that I was going to need to see what actually works for MY skin and stick with it. I have combination skin so I had to spend a lot of time to properly see what works and what doesn't. 

I prefer to use a facial wash to take off my make-up, and then cleanse clean skin. I know some people love using cleansers as a make-up remover, but it's just personal preference. For my facial wash, I have been using Neutrogena's 'Visibly Clear' gel in pink grapefruit. I really enjoy using this product! It smells deliciously fruity (hence the grapefruit) and works great for my skin. It's really gentle on the skin and takes off all my make-up perfectly. I do find that while I am using this face wash, I VERY rarely get any spots, which is definitely a plus! 

Neutrogena Visibly Clear pink grapefruit facial wash £4.94 - Boots

 As far as cleansers go, I am loving N-Spa's Melting Cleansing Gel (Available at Asda) I have used the classic Liz Earle- Cleanse and Polish, and although I only have good things to say about the product, it is pricey. The N-Spa Melting Cleanser is at the very affordable price of £6! Brilliant price for a product that feels so luxurious. I don't want to say too much about this product at the moment as I am planning to do a much more in depth review on this product in the very near future, so keep your eyes peeled if you would like to find out more information on this!

N-spa melting cleansing gel £6.00- Asda

I tend to use a facial scrub only a couple of times a week. I do tend to still change it up from time to time. I have been going between my Clinique '7 day scrub cream' and Soap and Glory's 'Fab Pore Facial Peel'. Both products work really well, although the Soap and Glory one is my favourite. It comes in a small 50ml tub, which actually lasts months! You only need a tiny amount. The mask itself has tiny green beads in the cream, which burst as you're massaging the product onto your face, releasing all the 'do-good' properties. Again, this is another product I will be reviewing in an upcoming blog post so look out for that.

Soap & Glory 'Fab Pore' facial peel £8.00- Boots

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Nails Nails Nails!

So I'm here to talk about everything nails! Lately I have been obsessed with having nice nails and there is SO many different products available to us on the high street now than just a plain standard one colour polish.

I want to give my opinion and experience I have had with various nail polishes and my personal favourites. Not just the ones which are on trend for this season, but the ones which you can't help but wear all year round!

So my favourite nail polish of all time (well, i'm cheating here, because it's a group of 8!) is Sally Hansen's HD polish. WOW, these are incredible! Definitely not just a simple, one colour. These have amazing dimension to them, and if you are a fan of sparkly nails, then these will be right up your street! I got these from WallMart when I was across in America last year, but if you live in the UK, you can buy them online at Amazon, for £4.99. The picture doesn't do it justice! If you can get your hands on one then i'd definitely recommend it, my favourite is in the colour 'DVD'.

Next up, is a couple of polishes from Nails Inc. I think this is a great brand, and you really do get the quality you pay for. They have a mixture of normal polishes as well as special effects one so there is plenty of choice for everyone. They do a really beautiful red shade called 'Villiers Street'. It's a very wearable metallic red and perfect for the up coming festive season. I always get loads of compliments when i'm wearing it!

Nails Inc in Villiers Street

Barry M have some great colours out there as well. My favourite colour from them is Raspberry. It's a gorgeous deep pink colour that just draws attention to the nails. Layered with a shiny top coat for a beautiful manicured look.

Barry M in Raspberry

Essie is now available to us in Boots stores and they have the greatest range of colours I have seen! With a mixture of light pastel shades, right through to darks. I have many favourites from them. My summer polish was the popular 'Fiji'. It is the palest pink colour and looks amazing on the nails. I prefer to wear this colour on my toes. With a tan it looks incredible!

Essie in Fiji

So that's my top nail polish colours and brands. I could go on forever about nail polish's that I love. So what are you loving to wear on your nails right now? Let me know! xx

Thursday, 25 October 2012

My Current Make Up Routine

Okay, so I wanted to do a blog post on my current make-up routine. I do tend to switch my make-up around a lot and this is due to a few different factors. One of them being the weather- during the summer months I like to keep it light and simple. Using tinted moisturizers or light foundations and basically just creating as much of an effortless make-up look as I can. I don't want to have to spend my summer slapping on a whole load of make-up and cakeing myself in layers of foundation and powder.

However, that being said, now that we are vastly approaching into those cold, winter months, I am looking to get a little extra coverage out of my foundation and experiment more with bolder lips and eye shadow. 

So, I am going to show you what products I am using from my make-up right now for this Autumn/Winter season. :)

Foundation: Estee Lauder Double Wear Light £27.50- Debenhams
I am thoroughly enjoying this foundation so far. I purchased it from my local Boots store at the end of September and so far, so good. :) The normal Double Wear foundation is a little too thick for me so I much prefer this one- it gives a medium coverage as opposed to the full coverage of the original foundation. It is a little bit pricey but I don't mind paying that bit extra for a decent foundation. My skin is really sensitive and can be prone to breakouts if I'm not careful, but I haven't had any concerns at all with this product. It's very easy to apply and long lasting.

Concealer: Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection £4.99- Superdrug/Boots
This is, without a doubt, the best concealer I have ever tried! It's really similar to MAC's studio finish concealer but for a fraction of the price. It hide's EVERYTHING- definitely a full coverage concealer without being too thick and really does give you the 16 hour wear it claims to. I have used this religiously for the last few years and would never consider changing. If you haven't tried it, please do- you won't be disappointed! 

Blusher: Mac Creme Blend Blush in Lady Blush £17.50-
So this is my first and only MAC blush I have tried. There was so much hype over this blush on the YouTube and blogging world (2 summers ago?!) So I decided I'd pick one up to try while I was across in America. I really do like this blusher, very nice, natural colour and the fact it's a cream blush gives it a beautiful dewy finish on the skin. Do I think it's worth the price honestly? No. I'm sure there is plenty of dupes out there just as good as this, however, I will continue to use this product until I'm finished as it would be a shame to waste it and I do like it- but I just wouldn't re-purchase the MAC one if I could find a cheaper alternative. 

Bronzer: H&M Bronzing Powder £5.99- H&M
I first saw this bronzer on one of CosmeticsCharlotte72's YouTube videos. She really seemed to love this product, so I decided to try it out. H&M isn't somewhere I have ever bought cosmetics from before, not for any particular reason, I'm just so used to nipping into Superdrug or Boots. 2 years on and I am still using and re-purchasing this bronzer. It's not orange toned at all and has no shimmer through it- which means no disco ball face! It's so natural looking and great for contouring cheekbones. Love this product and such a firm favourite with me!

Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked Palette £36.00- Debenhams
Okay, the first time I ever tried this palette was (believe it or not!) only 3 weeks ago. I was so hesitant to buying it as it is fairly pricey for an eyeshadow palette. However, this was coming from someone who had never tried an Urban Decay product before. I had contemplated buying it numerous times but just couldn't seem to justify it- so I kept holding off. Although, when I was on a recent family holiday- we were flying back home and I was flicking through the in-flight duty free magazine and saw they had the Naked Palette for £28- plus there was an extra 20% for the end of summer sale, so this gave me the perfect opportunity to try it out. I am now hooked on it and use it absolutely every single day! All the colours are so wearable and can take a day time look right into night time. My favourite colour from the palette has to be 'Half-baked'. It's a grogeous gold colour that applies like liquid metal to the eye lid. It really makes my blue eyes stand out too! 

Mascara: L'Oreal Telescopic Clean Definition in Black £9.35-
Everything you need to know is in the name! Love this mascara! Been my holy grail mascara since I was about 16, it's just amazing! No clumps, dramatic black, volume, length, basically just everything you could ask for in a perfect mascara!