Tuesday, 31 July 2012

July Favourites!

(1) St Tropez Aftersun - £13 - Review here.
(2) L'Oreal Nude Magique BB Cream - £9.99 - Review here.
(3) Wen Sweet Almond Mint Cleansing Conditioner - £25 - Review here.
(4) Perfectly Pampered Spa Hair Mask (Orange Oil) - £1.60 - Review here.
 (5) Mac Lipstick in Cut a Caper - £13.50 - Review here.
 (6) Elysambre Lip Liner Pencil - £6.99 - Review here.

P.s My 1 year of blogging giveaway starts on Saturday. Please let me know in the comments below if you would prefer to have one large prize, or for there to be two winners with smaller prizes? xxo

Monday, 30 July 2012

Book Worm #4 All the Single Ladies by Jane Costello

I know that this is a bit of a turn up for the books (haha pun not intended), but I hadn't bought Vegas before I went on holiday. Therefore I thought it was about time that I got round to reading the newest book by one of my favourite authors - Jane Costello.

Have no fear, I will be returning to the I heart series straight away so if you are reading them along with me then keep ploughing through and I hope you're enjoying it as much as I am.

On this new note, Jane Costello has to be the best author I have ever stumbled across. The first book I read by her was Bridesmaids. I found it on a table in Waterstones and became instantly hooked. From then on it was a match made in heaven. I asked for her books for Christmas and ended up reading all four of them.

After much investigation I knew of her new book (this one right here) coming out around June time and waited the whole 6 months since January for it to come out. Naturally I was right on it when it did, but since my friend Becky got me hooked on the I heart novels I felt compelled to read them all before anything else.. and well.. you know the rest.

If you haven't read any of Jane's books then you really need to. They are effortless, easy reads and are the perfect girly splurge that I reckon any female can relate to. This one is no exception. It is all about fighting to get an ex back, and realising how hard it is to let go.

Sam has been in a relationship with Jamie for 6 years. They met on holiday and have been inseparable ever since. However Jamie has always been someone who doesn't like to make roots that are too deep anywhere he stays. When he suddenly announces to Sam that he's unhappy in his job and is thinking of moving to South America without her it hits her hard. Their relationship had been rocky for a while but she didn't expect anything like this to ever happen. He is the love of her life, and she instantly wants to come up with a plan to win him back before he jets off. Her only problem is that she doesn't know exactly how to do this. And she doesn't know what life has already got planned for her to make decisions even harder.

Without spoiling it for those of you who want to read it, it truly is enjoyable from beginning to end. There is brilliant humour which reminds me of the I heart novels and has made me realise that Sam and Angela aren't really that different. I know Cosmopolitan has said that if you like Sophie Kinsella then you will love Jane Costello but I think Lindsey Kelk should be added to that list as well.

I hope you will go and discover her books for yourself and enjoy them just as much as I have. I'm already counting down the days til the next book Jane... When is it coming? :)

Sunday, 29 July 2012

OOTD - 29/7/12

I went to a family event on Friday afternoon so I thought I would share what I wore with you.

Gap Cardigan - £29.95 (Buy a similar one here)
Allsaints Dress - £47.50 (As seen in my haul)
Simmi Shoes - £30 (As seen in my OOTD)
Asos Bag - £15 (As seen in my OOTD)

Saturday, 28 July 2012

JolieBox Review - Wen Sweet Almond Mint Cleansing Conditioner

Wen Sweet Almond Mint Cleansing Conditioner is one of Wen's top sellers and I can certainly see why. It is not a brand that you tend to see on the high-street which is why I have never picked it up before. I have always been interested in the brand since I saw a beauty guru on youtube speak about it,  so I was thrilled to find a sample in my box. At around £25 for 480ml it is quite expensive but I think that if you are looking for an indulgent treat that works, this is your item.

The conditioner claims to leave the hair feeling moisturised and manageable whilst giving a healthy sheen. I would agree with all of those things but I feel that I must compare it to the hair mask I tried last week, to which I don't feel it works as well. Yes my hair is soft and smooth, and I definitely agree that it gives my locks a wonderful shine. However the Perfectly Pampered Mask manged to tame the fly-aways I have and really kept my hair looking sleek whereas this one doesn't do that as well.

I love the way it smelt when I was massaging it into my head. It felt like I was giving myself an at-home spa treatment which was a real treat. It doesn't have a lingering smell on the hair which may either be a selling point or something that puts you off. For me it's neither. I don't mind as long as my hair smells clean, which it does.

One advantage to this conditioner would be that it is free from harsh ingredients that would strip your hair of its natural oils. It is suitable for all hair types, and for ladies that have thick hair and think it might not work that well for them - it will. My hair is extremely thick, a I have been told by family and every hairdresser on the planet but it still leaves my hair feeling healthy.

It doesn't weigh your head down. It just leaves your hair feeling fresh and light. Would I buy it again? Yes, I probably would. But for a quick and cheaper fix I'd go for the Pampered Mask.

Friday, 27 July 2012

JolieBox Review - Elysambre Lip Liner


I am absolutely loving this shade :) What amazing products I get in my JolieBoxes every month!

This little beauty is made of 100% natural origin ingredients. It is Paraben free, Mineral oil free and Phenoxyethanol free. The packaging is made from recyclable materials and most of the ingredients are organic. How amazing is that! And to top all this it is the softest product to have ever graced my lips. It also works absolutely beautifully with my Mac I Love Winter lipstick smoothed over the top. Picture 1 of my lips is just the liner by itself and 2 is with the lipstick over the top. As you can see the lipstick lightens the liner a bit and gives it more of a sheen which I feel makes it more wearable for me.

Top Tip: I tend to blot after I have applied the liner and then blot after i've applied the lipstick. I then apply another layer of lipstick and it really helps to keep the colour so that I don't have to keep reapply so often. Plus, using this liner as a base helps to keep the colour for longer as well.

As I have mentioned before, it is super soft and smooth. It is nicely pigmented so it takes no effort to fill in the lips and you don't feel like you are colouring them in with a hard pencil but more as if you are using a soft pencil form lipstick :)

I couldn't give this product a higher review nor recommend it more to other people. The only difficulty I have is figuring out what name the shade is! On the pencil it says 801, but on the box it says 35 and it also says 'Nature Cos'. Your guess is as good as mine as to which, if any, is correct. I've tried googling them all and come up with nothing.

If anyone knows then please put it in the comments below for everyone else :)

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Book Worm #3 I Heart Paris by Lindsey Kelk

Here we are with the third post in my new series and the third of the 'I heart...' novels. I seem to be whizzing through these because they are such easy, great reads. I read this one in a couple of days when I was on holiday and received the next in line in the post today. My bookshelf really is starting to fill up.

As usual, if you are reading them with me but haven't finished Hollywood, then this might contain spoilers.

Angela is confused with the new dialema of whether or not to move in with her boyfriend, Alex. After being hurt before, she doesn't mind taking it slowly this time, but she might be in danger of going so slowly that there is no longer a decision to make. 

She gets offered a new job at Belle Magazine - one of the leading fashion magazines in the world. They want her to do a travel piece in Paris whilst she is there with her boyfriend for his 30th birthday. Little does she know that she is not the only one with a past in a different country. Paris may not turn out to be as romantic as she might of previously hoped.

Being a journalism graduate, I want to see my byline in black and white and therefore feel I can relate to Angela's struggles in Paris. The need to get copy completed on a short deadline isn't something to take lightly. It is the gateway to a new way of life and they don't come thick and fast if you can't take the heat when given the opportunity.

She misses home dearly. She's missing Louise and perhaps even though she doesn't wish to admit it, her mum and dad as well. When she seeks support from those who are meant to be closest to her in New York but doesn't find it, you can understand some of the choices she makes unlike with the last two books.

It's almost like you're watching Angela grow up and willing her to make the right decisions whilst laughing along with all the wrong ones like a good friend. In the end she is still Angela, and after a drink or two she will always end up spewing on the bathroom floor or smacking 6 shades of purple into her eye socket when she falls over.

Thankfully I have never thrown up after drink, nor have I had a black eye, but there is definitely room for some serious shopping in Paris and a pair of Louboutins or two.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

NOTD - Nailgirls in Bronze

What a stunning colour this is. And what amazing quality too for a brand I have never heard of before!

I received this limited edition Olympics theme polish along with a gold polish in my July JolieBox not that long ago. Being nail polish, I couldn't wait to try it out and I can't believe how amazing it is. Sometimes there is a reason why brands are unknown - because they aren't that brilliant - but Nailgirls seem to be amazing. Maybe I have been living under a rock and they are huge. Who knows :) Regardless, this little pot of magic worked so well. It only took one coat and it was completely opaque as you can see. The brush was little bit difficult because its small but overall I wouldn't say it was bad at all.

I really am contemplating getting more of these because they are really quick and easy. My only question would be how long they would last. This is a mini and although I don't tend to overwork colours that much so that I run out, it would be nicer to have a bit of a bigger pot. I haven't seen a big pot in real life but they look around the same size as Essie which would be great :) On the other hand they are quite expensive at £10.50 a pot! Ouch. But for speed, would I pay?.. Maybe. A for a couple :)

Monday, 23 July 2012

OOTD - 23/7/12

Relaxed, post-holiday outfit.




Topshop Shirt - £30 - (As seen in my previous OOTD)
Hollister Top - £20 - (Buy a similar one here)
Allsaints Chinos - £49 - (As seen in my previous OOTD)
Toms - £34.99 - (As seen in my previous OOTD)

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Perfectly Pampered Spa Hair Mask (Orange Oil)

I was lucky enough to be chosen to review this hair mask* by BBloggersUnite a couple of weeks ago. Unfortunately I have been seriously busy since that point and received my sample whilst I was on holiday so I have only just got around to trying it out. I must say..... I completely love it!

This Orange Oil Spa Hair Mask by Perfectly Pampered aims to condition and moisturise your hair to bring it back to life. All you have to do is apply it directly to the hair after shampooing and then leave it to rest for 5-10 minutes before rinsing and then towel drying.

I really like the fact that you don't have to do any pre-shower preparation - e.g leaving it on for 20 minutes before showering - because I don't tend to have a lot of time to mess about. For me it's easier to get in and get out so to speak. The mask smells amazing - just like oranges - and comes out of the packet as a thin orange cream. It didn't feel like it was thick on my hair and was simple to rinse out. Even though I have thick hair it still felt like the cream was nourishing every follicle which I was quite surprised and happy about.

I blow dried my hair because I didn't realise you were just meant to towel dry. Having said this I had no issues with it and my hair is now seriously silky and smooth. The mask seems to have helped with fizz too. I have no dry fly-aways any more or bits that stick out. My hair just looks sleek. I even had my mum stroking my hair because it looks so soft and shiny.

At around £1.60 per sachet they aren't too expensive. You could use them 2-3 times a week as a treat or simply just once a week or once a fortnight. You will still reap all the benefits and trust me, you will love it.

A huge thanks to BBloggersUnite for picking me to review this product.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

July JolieBox!


(1) Etat Pur - Biomimetic Skincare B09 Express Purifying Mask - This intensive mask purifies the skin by absorbing toxins, impurities and excess sebum in the skin.

My Opinion: I absolutely love the sound of this mask. It sounds like everything I would want from a purifying mask. I love that JolieBox have now decided to do personalised boxes depending on your beauty profile because it really does make a huge difference. I love getting products that really do relate to me such as this one. I haven't tried this yet but I am really looking forward to. JolieBox included a card for discount skincare from this line if I like the mask so I'm really happy about that. A review shall come shortly.

(2) Jane Iredale - Tantasia Self Tanner - A moisturising gradual self-tanner for the face and body that provides instant healthy looking colour.

My Opinion: Well I recognise this brand already simply from an old JolieBox. I have previously received a lip balm/stain from this brand and absolutely adore it. For more information on that then click here. I already feel positive about this tanner because I liked the other product so much, so hopefully this will live up to my expectations and not leave me orange. Speaking of orange, it has a really nice citrus-y smell to it. So long as it doesn't leave me that colour then, that's great. I know it says for the face and body but there really isn't enough of a sample to try it out on the body. That is a slight downside, but I am sure I'll find a way of making it work.

(3) Nailgirls - Two mini-polishes from the Medal Collection, inspired by the Olympics - Gold and Bronze, these metallic polishes are sure to get you noticed this summer.

My Opinion: What girl doesn't like nail polish? Putting a polish in a box, in my eyes is a winner every time. I absolutely adore the shades. Although I already have a gold very similar, I am looking forward to trying out the Bronze. Plus it would also be nice to test the durability of the polishes. Review to follow, as per.

(4) Wen by Chaz Dean - Sweet Almond and Mind Cleansing Conditioner - Bursting with natural herbs and botanicals, this single-step cleansing conditioner leaves hair looking and feeling deeply cleansed and nourished at the same time.

My Opinion: Yay!!! I have always wanted to try out this brand but I never really stumble across it whether that's online or in a salon. This will be really interesting for me to try out and see if my high expectations meet that which the Wen name holds. It smells lovely. So far, so good.

(5) Special Extra - This month Joliebox have included an extra gift as a way of apology for the inconvenience that may have been caused by the late arrival of the June JolieBox last month.

My Opinion: I was really excited that there was a special extra this month but a little bit disappointed that it was the Davines Moisturising Balm that I have had before. It was a lovely product but I was hoping for something new to try. However on a better note, this product has lasted me forever which means that I can afford to give my second one away which I will include in my blog giveaway, celebrating one year of blogging on the 4th of August :) I don't use nail seperators either and I have three new packets of them now =/ Might give some of them away too.

Overall, what a lovely box again this month. I really would recommend this box to anybody who is starting out with beauty boxes and doesn't know which ones to try. I am never disappointed with what I receive and although there are sometimes hiccups with delivery, they are very rare and are sorted as soon as possible.

For enlarged pictures of all products, please look below.





Friday, 20 July 2012

St Tropez AfterSun

I brought this product along with the La Roche-Posay as my main new products to try for my holiday last week. I thought the holiday would be a great way to try out products I wouldn't get to try out otherwise in Britain, or at least very rarely.

I've always been one to burn and never tan. In the summer I look more like Ariel's crab than a sun kissed beach babe. Having said this, on the rare occasion that my skin decided to treat me and goes a little bit brown, I like to hold onto it for as long as I can with a good moisturising after sun. I was scanning the isles in Boots and came across one by my favourite self tanning brand - St Tropez. The product (£13) instantly went in the basket as I felt fairly confident that it was going to be a good product. And it really is.

This lotion smells a-maze-ing. It smells like Gingerbread or something slightly cinnamon. I actually wish they made a perfume that smelled like it because I would be on it like a shot. 

It massages in like a dream and the subtle hint of self tan really bumps up the one you already have and makes it look even more golden and gorgeous. I had started to peel a bit but as soon as I apply this it soothes it straight away and lasts throughout the day so I don't feel the need to reapply it over and over. 

Over all I definitely think that its worth it and would recommend it to anyone who's going on holiday, who tans well or not. It smells divine and works a dream. 5 stars.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

NOTD - Essie in Cute as a Button

I received a lovely parcel this morning from a friend at university. One of the items included in the parcel was this Essie nail both that both of us had been wanting for a long time. Unfortunately they had sold out in our local Boots, but upon both of us returning to our homes she managed to find one and posted it to me. 

As you can tell I was eager to try it out, after all I only received it this morning! I know that there has been a lot of hype about this nail polish as it is one of Essie's top sellers but I didn't see any harm in me adding my 2 pennies worth :)

As you can see its an absolutely stunning colour. It is really bright on the nails and makes me happy when I look at it. After returning back from holiday to a dreary England, it is nice to have some colour and warmth to remind me of the hot sun shine I had to leave behind.

I love the quality of the polish and the brush is amazing. It is so wide that it literally makes painting my nails so easy and quick. I used 3 coats in the picture above but you could easily get away with 2.

What is your favourite nail colour for summer? Let me know in the comments below :)

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

La Roche-Posay Face Suntan Lotion (Oily Skin)



Well what better to post about the first day I am back in England than sun tan lotion. Not that we need it over here by what I have been hearing from friends and family. However I am sure that a lot of you will be heading to hotter climates over the next few months and it is definitely important to keep your skin protected from the harmful sun rays. If you don't you could end up with skin that ages prematurely and have the beginning signs of brown age spots on your face. Not a pretty look.

Right so I am a girl that hates putting suntan lotion on my face. It is one of the worst things about going on holiday in my eyes, because suntan lotion is greasy and my skin is oily and it just results in me breaking out and looking like a disgusting mess all holiday. No thanks!

So I went on the hunt for a good suntan lotion that is specifically designed for your face and stumbled across this beauty. It is even specifically designed for oily skin, and if you have normal/dry skin there is a version for you too!

Basically, this one helps to keep your face matte throughout the day whilst protecting your face with SPF as well as UVA/UVB protection. You can buy it in either 30 or 50. I went for the 30 because I like to get a little bit of colour on my face, and I don't tan very well to start with so if I went for 50 I would come back looking like a ghost.

This product works wonders but it doesn't feel particularly nice to apply. It is more the feeling after you have rubbed it in that I don't like. It's not as if it is heavy and you can feel it laying on your face but it creates a matte layer that just feels a bit thick to start with until it settles. However afterwards, voila! It keeps me skin matte all day and I am extremely happy to say that I didn't break out once! It works for me, but with the price tag of around £16 I would hope so too! In my eyes it is worth spending the money on because I really care about my skin and feel self conscious if it is not looking great, so to me this is essential.

Are you going anywhere nice on holiday this year? Let me know in the comments below, or if you have any more recommendations for great suntan lotions for the face :)

Monday, 16 July 2012

Mac Lipstick in Cut a Caper (Lustre)

Yay I got it!

As you probably know, I included this in a beauty wish list a few weeks back, stating that it was coming soon and I needed to get my hands on it! Well hey presto! Here I am. This is my third or fourth Mac lipstick and i just fall in love with them the more I use them. 

Cut a Caper is from the Heavenly Creatures collection and is sold for around £13.50 which I really don't think is a price to grumble at for a high end lipstick. When you get to the likes of YSL that sell theirs for around £23.50, and you find that Mac is just as good, you take it without question.

The Mac lipsticks always look flawless and creamy and compliment my lips instead of looking dry and lacking beauty. As you may remember, my post a week ago was about the Collection 2000 Apple Blossom lipstick. I am sure you can see there is just no comparison to the finished look of the lipstick. This one just gives off a perfect sheen. It lays on the lips effortlessly and most importantly, it doesn't wash me out.

Speaking of colours however... The photo shows it a little bit more muted than it is. I would say that this is a coral pink/orange type colour and it definitely has some vibrancy too it. Clearly in the sunlight it mellows the colour but in the darker light and shade it can look quite daring and bright. Definitely something I am not use to... but I learned to love very quickly.

It's crazy to me that only earlier this year I was a lipstick newbie and had steered clear of it for a long while because it felt very drying. It seemed that I should have got back into it sooner but now I have I am enjoying discovering all these fabulous shades.

Do you have any recommendations for great lipsticks that you love? Let me know in the comments below. I am back from holiday tomorrow so I shall be able to reply to all of your lovely comments then :)

Sunday, 15 July 2012

No7 Blush in Damson

I swear that the No7 vouchers have been out for ages this time! They seem to just last forever and frankly there are only a certain amount of No7 polishes a girl can own before it just looks like obsession.

I have been branching out into the different skincare lines they have recently released and overall they have been a bit hit or miss. Some of the products I just haven't got on with but others were ok. What I don't understand is why I had never contemplated using No7 Blush. For a blush addict this just seemed completely unacceptable. It only occurred me to that they might hold blushes when my friend asked me for blush recommendations. She said she had a voucher and I figured 'why not go and check them out?'

We both ended up swatching a couple. There wasn't many to choose from but be both settled on this lovely colour called Damson. She was kind enough to let me try this out to see what I thought of it too.. so thanks Becky :)

And my conclusion....? They are actually really nice! The blush is soft and the pigmentation is pretty good. You only need to sweep a little of this on your cheeks to get that healthy flush that every girl tries to achieve.

It also wears extremely well. I put this blush on at 8 in the morning and wore it through a long day of exams and university. I ended up taking it off at around 11pm at night and it still looked just as good as when I had applied it.

I was really impressed with this blush over all. And you get a decent amount for your money which is nice. I think it is definitely worth giving them a shot. It is just a shame that there is such a limited shade selection.

Saturday, 14 July 2012

4 ways to wear.... My Topshop Denim Shirt


Here is my second '4 ways to wear' post using my new Topshop Denim Shirt. Let me know which outfit you like the best in the comments below. If you would like to check out the first in the series then click here :)


Look Number 1 - Smart Casual

(1) Topshop Denim Shirt - £30
(2) Topshop Jeans - £38
(3) Office Wonderland Taupe Wedges - £75

Look Number 2 - Causal Lounge

(1) Topshop Denim Shirt - £30
(2) H&M White Strap Top - £2.99
(3) Topshop Denim Shorts - £36
(4) River Island Shoes - £15.99




Look Number 3 - Holiday Dinner

(1) Topshop Denim Shirt - £30
(2) Allsaints Maxi Dress - £50
(3) Sainsburrys Flip Flops - £15




Look Number 4 - Cute lunch date

(1) Topshop Denim Shirt - £30
(2) Hollister Top - £32
(3) Zara Skirt - £25.99
(4) SimmiShoes - £35
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