BEAUTY & LIFESTYLE BLOG

Monday, 12 December 2016

My engagement story

Yes, you have just read that title correctly!! I am officially going to become Mrs Newson. After four beautiful years together, Gary got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. I know for a fact, that pretty much every woman I know has dreamt of this moment, myself included. I have to say, is was an even better reality!


As much as I share quite a lot about myself through my site and in my videos, I try to keep Gary out of everything as I think he deserves to have a private life. However, he has given me the thumbs up with sharing this news and letting you know how it all happened!! 


It was around 7am in Mauritius, we were up early everyday for breakfast on holiday so I didn't think much of it when Gary asked if I would like to go for a walk on the beach. So I threw on anything I could find and headed out with our towels. 


We found nice space near the sea and laid out our towels. Before we got to the beach, Gary said he had a present for me! Which was sweet, I wasn't expecting anything. Now, when Gary buys me gifts, he's extremely practical so it's usually something for the kitchen or chocolate - because he knows me so well! 


Gary said I needed to close my eyes and hold my hands out - which I did after plonking myself down on my towel. Gary was like, No no, you need to stand up for this, which I did find unusual but still, nothing clicked. 


He then told me to open my eyes, I did and he was down on one knee. He had my ring held out and I just burst into tears. He said, will you marry me - at this point I was still sobbing which he replied 'is that a yes? 


I can't tell you what went through my mind. I remember thinking how brave he was, and how much of a big moment this is. I was so proud of him and I felt so lucky! I have never been after a fairytale ending, nor have I imagined a blockbuster moment when it came to my proposal. But Gary made this so special for me. It wasn't cheesy, or embarrassing - it was real. I have never loved Gary more than I did in that moment! He is such a wonderful and caring person and he did it perfectly. It's a great story to tell the grandkids.. And who said romance is dead! 
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Monday, 5 December 2016

Room 1053 - Mauritius


It's taken me three months to write this post. Which is crazy as I started as I was wandering off the plane typing away in the notes section via my iPhone. On the 11.5 hour flight, I was thinking over and over again how I can account for the 14 days I spent in Mauritius.


I have to honestly say, people were right - Mauritius is such a beautiful part of the world. It's everything you see in a holiday brochure and more. I don't think it's easy to put into words how unbelievable everything is - so I am going to try with the aid of pictures! 


I am not 100% sure where to begin, so I think it's only right that I start at the very beginning and sharing the main highlights of our trip (otherwise you will be here hours reading this novel).


 Travelling to London Gatwick...  

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Monday, 21 November 2016

Zoeva Nude Spectrum Blush Palette

I have been buying Zoeva products for a few years now, usually I buy their eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks, but when I saw this blush palette, I just had to get my hands on it. 

It's a stunning four shade blush palette. It's perfect for the Autumn/Winter period. The tones within this palette are quite pigmented, smooth on application and more bronze and warm. However, I would say that they could be easier to blend, and the wear is what I would call below average as they fade within four to five hours. 

Usually when I select my blushers, I choose more rose tones and pinks. Something that will make my cheeks look rosy rather than bronze. However, this palette, although it has more bronze shades, I find that the shimmer/highlighter affect is really impactful.

Each individual shade is different, I am not sure whether they used a different formula, however I found the longevity of each shade to be different. 

ND010 is the light rosy beige shade which has a hint of gold which provides you with more of a silky satin finish.  This has an opaque coverage and the consistency is smooth and quite easy to blend. This particular one lasted around 4 hours on my skin. I'm not sure if it's different for other skin types. I've got combination skin. 

ND020 is the light - medium brown shade. This is much warmer than the other blushers and I find has a warm, yellow undertone. The colour pay off is acceptable, however, I think if it had been more pigmented the impact would have been greater. This blush lasted around 5 hours on my skin. 

ND030 is the darker shade. This has a more bronzy brown undertone and reminds me much more of a bronzer rather than a blusher. This is my favourite. It's super soft on my skin and I love the payoff. This lasted around 5 hours on my skin before it started to fade. 

ND040 is the medium brown shade which has a shimmer rose undertone and a matte finish. This is slightly pigmented but I found that the shimmer takes over this shade a great deal more than the others. The texture is smooth and silky on application. This lasted around 4.5 hours on my skin before I noticed it fading. 

Overall, I liked this palette. The colours are great and perfect for this time of the year. I would have liked if the blush stayed on my skin a lot longer, however, I don't mind applying again as it's not a large palette so carrying it is easy. 

I think for the price - £15. It's definitely worth the money, however, I think there are a lot of high street brands to choose from that would have a better pay off. The only difference is you get four shades for your money. 

If you want to buy this palette, you can get it on BeautyBay.com
Check out my review here.
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Sunday, 20 November 2016

Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them



I feel sort of emotional stepping back into the the magical mind of JK Rowling. After growing up watching, reading and loving Harry Potter and everything that is Harry Potter. I feel almost sentimental watching this film as if I am going to see an old family member or I have found something I had lost years ago. 

It's a wonderful feeling and I am glad that at the age of 27 I still feel this way! 


So, what's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them really like... 


It's weird, because when I see Eddie Redmayne I always imagine him as other characters from his films. Usually in the form of the Danish girl or as Stephen Hawking. He is a phenomenal actor and really brings a character to life. 

So, as soon as I saw him in this film as the lovable character Newt, I was immediately drawn back into the world of magic. I love it. He plays a character that reminds me very much of Ron Weasley and Hagrid combined, slightly vulnerable, adorable in his nature but also brave when he has to be. 

Let me start from the beginning and work through the film. 

Fantastic beasts is set in New York City in the 1920's I believe. Eddie Redmayne plays a British Wizard called Newt Scamander who is going on an adventure to seek out new magical creatures. He is writing a book (which is a part of the required reading at Hogwarts 70 years on) on these marvellous creatures as he feels that there is a huge lack of understanding within the wizarding community which is why they are being killed. His goal is to change the perception of magical beasts and in turn stop them from becoming extinct.

However, at this moment in time, there is a dark magic that resides in New York which is causing problems between magical folk and muggles. 

So when Newt gets to New York he immediately finds himself in trouble, a few of his magical creatures somehow escape from his tan leather briefcase and begin to roam the streets of the city - causing mayhem along the way.  

On his hunt to find them to put them back in the briefcase, he meets a No-Maj or better known to us as a muggle, called Jacob - played by Dan Fogler. Jacob is such a wonderful character and for me, played an essential role within this movie. He brings the comedy to the film which is just wonderful. Without giving any spoilers, Newt and Jacob build up a friendship of sorts, and Newt introduces the world of magic to Jacobs life - which in those times, was unforgivable and punishable by law. 

Whilst Newt is trying to find his beasts, he meets Porpentina, better known as Tina (played by Katherine Waterston) who is an Auror in the Magical Congress. This is the American version of the Ministry of Magic. 

Tina finds out what Newt is up to and reports him to the Magical Congress to face his punishment. The reason being is there has been something sinister roaming the streets causing issues for both No-Majs and wizards alike - something that magical folk are blaming on a fantastic beast. However, when doing so Tina's background story starts unravelling and you soon realise that she has a history of her own. 

When you get to the magical congress, you meet Mr Grey - played by Collin Farrell. You see him when the film begins in true Harry Potter style - lots of carnage and mystery, but this is where his character really starts to form and the film keeps unravelling after this point. 

Overall, I love this film! There is a real feel good factor about it, but also keeps you wanting to learn more. It's more adult than Harry Potter and I feel as much as kids will enjoy it, it's been made for adults. I would recommend watching Harry Potter before hand. As much as you may enjoy the film being in the dark about the wonders of witchcraft and wizardry, there are certain hints about where this movie is going and your knowledge of the HP films will come in handy. 

For instance, Dumbledore is mentioned, and so is Grindelwald - however, this movie has a huge focus on Grindelwald (no spoilers here). These are characters you will only know by watching the films or reading the books. I think you will have a greater appreciation for the film if you do.

I would rate this movie 8/10! Definitely recommend it in 3D also. 
Click here for the trailer so you can discover more for yourself. 

This is the film review for Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them. I have written this review in a way where I have provided a summary of the film without sharing any of the spoilers! Those bits I think you should discover for yourself by going to watch the film! I hope you enjoy the read.
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Sunday, 2 October 2016

The many smells of Brighton

You're probably thinking what the hell is the title of this blog all about. Well, I actually have an answer for you! From the minute we got into Brighton, I must have said around 12 different times - WHAT IS THAT SMELL! 

Whether it was the sea I was smelling, or a great whiff of someones dog. There are just so many smells in Brighton. If you didn't know, Brighton is a little seaside town situated in the South of England. It's one of those places that I have only ever visited twice, yet I love it there. There are many little quirks that are just so appealing and rather lovable in their own right. 

I wouldn't ever move there, nor do I see myself spending large quantities of time there. But, it's a great place to go get a fish and chips and walk along the pier. I recently went with Gary's mum Corrie and his baby nephew Teddy. It was a rather last minute trip and I can honestly say - it was great fun. So, today I thought I would share my thoughts and experiences in Brighton. 
Where do I start? 

First of all, look at this monster of an ice-cream! It was extremely delicious, rather expensive and also made me feel guilty as hell after eating it, but oh well!  Anyway, back to the list of all things Brighton...

  1. There are so many different smells - and not always in a good way! From Fish & Chips, to urine, wet dog and the sea!
  2. Great place to do a spot of shopping and walk up and down the lanes
  3. They do a bloody good ice-cream that makes you feel unbelievably guilty and a little bit sick afterwards 
  4. Freshly made doughnuts from Doughlicious are a must - just don't get 12 like I did - fatty!
  5. If you like fairground rides, this could be the place for you 
  6. So many places to eat, and quirky restaurants to enjoy
  7. One of the most culturally diverse and accepting places I have been to. I feel as if anyone is welcome in Brighton. It's rather beautiful
  8. There is no better place to eat fish & chips than on the pebble beach
  9. A bottle of water cost me £1.20 - I think I scowled at the extortionate price, yet I paid it anyway!
  10. Parking is a nightmare, so go early to try and find a good space that isn't million miles away from the town centre
  11. Watch out for the Seagulls! They shit absolutely everywhere - your head being one of them - and they pinch your food!
  12. Home to some of the coolest, quirkiest and just fabulous vintage stores and markets.  Go on a Saturday and just get lost in it all
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Wednesday, 14 September 2016

YSL Shocking Mascara


I have always wanted to try one of the YSL mascaras, but at £25 a pop this isn't a product I would ever purchase lightly. I think £25 is quite a lot of money to spend on a mascara that you're not sure you will even like. Plus, you're only buying the name - sorry YSL, but it's true. 

It's great if you can afford to splash out on expensive beauty products, but you have to be realistic with your budget. I'm saying all of this, yet I still own one. However, I didn't buy this, Gary did, to treat me which is extremely sweet and I am one lucky woman.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS
When I first applied this mascara, I have to admit I wasn't so impressed. The mascara was clumped to the bristles of the brush and I couldn't apply it on to my lashes without it going everywhere. I had to wipe the brush off with a baby wipe and start again. After doing so, it worked wonders. 

It really does fill out your lashes, which is difficult for me to notice usually as I have such long thick lashes anyway. I think this is due to the shape of the brush, which is rather unusual, it's twisted which I believe helps to create that volume affect. 

I must admit you do feel this mascara on your lashes, it's weighty but not unpleasant. I think due to the length of my lashes, only going over them twice is sufficient enough. On a positive note, it does brighten your eyes and the black is so intense. 

I think this is perfect to wear on a night out, but not day-to-day. 

PACKAGING
The packaging looks so luxurious. I love the gold and the shape of the tube. It's honestly stunning and rather weighty. I love the font and the overall appearance. It represents YSL so well. 

MASCARA REMOVAL
Removing this mascara was simple to do, however, I was using my Charlotte Tilbury eye makeup remover which is strong stuff. I don't feel this will come off so easily with drugstore remover - or it will smudge everywhere. Definitely worth testing out I think. 

AFTER THOUGHT
The mascara is long lasting and I do like it. However, I do feel that spending £25 on this is costly and not worth that amount of money. Especially in comparison to other drugstore mascaras that work so well. I do think this is due to the thickness and length of my lashes. I feel that if I had shorter, thinner lashes it would be much more impactful and worth purchasing. 

So, overall it is nice but I wouldn't reach for it everyday. There are better mascaras out there!

YSL SHOCKING MASCARA VIDEO REVIEW
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Saturday, 10 September 2016

Decadence by Marc Jacobs


I have been on the hunt for a new fragrance for a while now after finishing my fabulous Flash by Jimmy Choo.

When I came across Decadence, I wasn't sure at first. I went in and out of Boots three times trying to make up my mind as to whether I liked it or not. It wasn't until I sprayed it on to my skin that I thought it was lovely. I don't think spraying perfume on those sample strips of card are at all helpful. 

Now, after just over a month of using it, I can honestly say I have fell in love with this perfume. It's just so womanly and rich. I like sweet scents, but this is simple, elegant and refreshing.

Ingredients
I researched the ingredients and this perfume is quite the concoction. The top notes include plum, saffron and iris. Bulgarian rose, samba jasmine and orris root from from the heart of the perfume, while the base includes warm liquid amber, vetiver and papyrus wood.

Sillage
The sillage is great. It just lingers in the air and you can walk in and out of a room and still smell it. Really impactful and I have had so many compliments about this fragrance. It just fills the air so wonderfully and melts into the skin perfectly

Longevity 
I would say Decadence last for around 5/6 hours. It's one of those fragrances that melts into your skin, so when you think the scent has faded someone surprises you and tells you how nice you smell. 

What it smells like to me...
When I picked this up I could smell what I thought was vanilla. It has a richness and sweetness about it which I adore. You can definitely smelly the fruitiness and the woody undertone which is perfection. Not too sweet, a perfect fragrance for autumn/winter.

Overall, I think its a wonderful perfume. Definitely one I would recommend to all my friends. It's sophisticated and womanly and makes me feel sexy. I will definitely purchase this again once I have run out. £77 for 100ml - I cannot complain! 

Watch my review video here 
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Friday, 8 July 2016

Moving on up

Adios, Au Revoir, Ciao, Auf Wiedersehen, Bon voyage, Sayonara, farewell... 



Today is officially the end of an era.. I am leaving my current position to start something new and fresh. 

It's been an interesting journey to say the least and has given me the experience I needed to move on up - is anyone else singing M people right now? 'Moving on up, time to break free... nothing can stop me...'

No? Just me then... Anyway, moving swiftly on.

Progression and development is key, and I think anyone who is career driven and aspires to be better will agree with that statement. This is one of the main reasons for my farewell, and also because I think going on a new adventure, meeting and working with new people as well as learning new things is extremely exciting and worthwhile. 

However, it's still very sad to say goodbye.


We had a team picnic which as you can see, we had far too much food and not enough mouths to feed. It was honestly lovely, and very different! Which I like, you know me... I have got to be different. 

I am going to miss my girls the most. I think people make a company and when you have gained some fantastic friends like I have - Shell, Sammy, Josie & Karen #NameDrop - it's sometimes sad to think I will not see these people every day. 


However, this isn't something that can stop you from fulfilling your dreams and making the most out of life. I have gained some lifetime friends and I will forever be thankful to those people who have made my time a pleasant one. 

Thanks for the memories :) 
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Thursday, 7 July 2016

The negative side of life

After throwing a few fucks, shits and nobs directed at the woman in the car in front of me, I realised I was going crazy. 



My 35 minute drive to work turned into an hour and 10 minutes as the woman in front of me decided to let every Tom, Dick and Harry cut in. Then for some unknown reason, she just didn't like the speed limit and decided driving 30 in a 60 was just OK!


I had a meeting at 9 am and I was so close to being late for it. I think my blood was boiling because I had it in my mind I would get into work early to settle into my day and I clearly wasn't going to be. 

My mood went from bad to worse as my stomach started grumbling. My 08:30 morning porridge was clearing not happening and to be quite frank, I was pissed off about it. 


Which may be the reason I was directing my anger to the woman in front, who I still think is a complete moron who cannot drive. I am definitely the wrong person to mess with when I am tired and hungry. 


Two weeks on from that incident and it's still on my mind.. what is wrong with me?? 


I get road rage every now and again when people - who clearly shouldn't be allowed behind the wheel -  decide to fuck up my drive to work. I don't know whether it's my age or whether it's because I had plans that day, but something really struck a cord with me. 


I have been thinking about it over and over again, and I have put it down to negativity. Which is what I want to talk about today. I always try to create positive vibes, but honestly, it's friggin difficult at times. 


Everyone gets these moments, even those people who tell you to spread the love and positivity to the world can be arseholes at times - surely! 


Not that I am by any means justifying my actions, I know my aggression was misguided and completely out of order. But, I think that's just me being human. I am an emotional person, mostly laughter and crying - when I am happy and sad. I am hardly ever angry and it takes a lot to push me that far. 


I think we all have a breaking point and people always pin aggression and sadness to negativity which I have to say is a load of bullshit. 


I agree being positive is the best way to think. I find that I am always in a better place when I think positive thoughts and I like to believe that life is good. But then you also have to be realistic, we all have bad things happen to us, we all go through shit and we all feel down at times. I think having negative thoughts is life


I think being negative is just a part of being human, but seeing the positive side to things will definitely bring you more joy out of life. 




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Friday, 1 July 2016

Topshop nails it


I have been purchasing Topshop nail polish for years now. Not only are they affordable, but they also have an impressive and diverse colour selection. 

Whenever I browse through my Topshop app, I always find myself on the beauty section - obvs! Which as you can tell from this post, happened to me recently.

I love painting my nails, it makes me feel feminine and it's one of the simple pleasures I have in life where I pamper myself. We all deserve a little pampering every now and again.

If you follow me on Instagram, you will no doubt have seen my many nail pictures that I have taken shortly after visiting the nail salon.

I am very much a neutral kind of girl, so you will never see me with extremely bright nails, unless I'm feeling brave. I just like the simplicity of a natural tone and find that these are always the shades I go to first.  I like my nails to look real and elegant, so sophisticated shades are more my thing. 

Which brings me to the recent shade that I purchased from Topshop. 

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Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Holiday essentials checklist

Ensuring that you have all the fundamental items you need for your holiday requires you to be savvier and organised than you might think. 

Photograph taken by Ryan Chand 
This may be different for men - or not. But as a woman, I have essentials for various parts of my trip, from the plane all the way to what I would wear to bed. 

I'm not sure if I'm too organised, and I know that the 10 to-do lists that I write myself in the upcoming weeks to my trip are rather extreme and potentially unnecessary. Which is why, I decided to write My Holiday Essentials List. This hopefully will help you too and well you can just print it off as your very own checklist. 


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Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Eye Rescue


REASONS FOR BUYING


Since turning 25 two years ago, I have been extremely conscious of my aging skin. I know that makes me sound 100 years old, but I am being serious. I would like to age gracefully and hopefully, with my new regime and healthy lifestyle I will do so. I hope. 


MY FIRST THOUGHTS 


Charlotte Tilbury packaging is always luxurious and great quality. I must say that  aesthetically, it's very pleasing to the eye and I just love the faux glass (it's plastic) container and rose gold combination.  The tub contains a large quantity of eye cream, even though when I held it for the first time, I did think I wasn't getting much for my money. 
At £40 per tub which only contains 15ml, you do expect a larger quantity for your money.


FIRST APPLICATION 


It leaves a dewy finish and you do get a slight shine on your skin. It does have a peculiar scent which I can't quite pin down. Not in a bad way, it just has its own uniqueness about it. On my skin, it sets well. I did find that I had to keep dabbing to begin with, but it slowly absorbs nicely. 

THE NEXT DAY


My skin felt as dewy as it did the day before. I do not get much puffiness or bags so I couldn't really say whether this would help if you suffered from these things. My eyes looked awake and moisturised which was a great feeling. I do think that this cream is slightly heavy, so would work perfect in the winter - not so much in the summer months if you live somewhere warm. Fortunately, I am from the UK and it's usually gloomy and cold here. Lucky us! 

You can buy Charlotte Tilbury Magic Eye Cream here.


You may also be interested in reading my other Charlotte Tilbury reviews:

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Night Cream
Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream
Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation
Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder Foundation


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Monday, 16 May 2016

Hair removal solutions


I have suffered from dark patches on my underarms since I can remember. They have not always been this way. It all started when I began shaving. Over the years, it has gradually gotten worse and is now a problem I really want to fix. 

I have read so many stories about other women trying to deal with this issue and there are some women out there who have just embraced it and no longer find it a problem.

Unfortunately, I am not one of those women. I am extremely self-conscious and try not to wear many sleeveless tops due to this. I was told that this issue was caused by shaving. So, I decided to take action. I researched and researched and tried so many remedies that people have suggested from lemons, cucumbers, and potatoes - yes, I said potatoes. Apparently, they are all bleaching agents and can over time remove the patches.

I tried them all, and they didn't work for me. Maybe I didn't try them for long enough, but my patience was wearing thin.

 I then thought, maybe trying another form of hair removal would help. So I tried hair removal cream by Veet - this burnt my underarms. It was so bad, I couldn't put my arms down without being in agony. I think this was due to an allergic reaction - not sure if anyone else has experienced this before? 

Needless to say, I will never be trying hair removal cream again. I then went on to wax strips, this was okay, but not a long-term solution and annoyingly, they never removed all the hairs. Plus, I found trying to pull the strip off myself was awful because I was anticipating pain, so I don't think I pulled it off quick enough. 

Finally, I decided to buy an Epilator. I have heard many things about these little contraptions - both good and bad. The bad comments were always how much it hurt to use them. However, there were a variety of people who suggested that they were good and easy to use.

I purchased mine from Boots. I clearly was having some luck as they were on offer. I bought mine for £49.99. I think this has been the best thing I've ever bought for hair removal. It's amazing for my underarms and has really helped. My underarm hair doesn't grow back for two weeks. There isn't much pain and the patches have faded. I couldn't be happier and I think eventually, the patches will fade even more. 

I would definitely recommend this product if you suffer from dark underarms and hopefully, you will find it helps you too. 

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Monday, 2 May 2016

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Night Cream


I have never been one to wear night cream, and I have never really been around anyone who pampers their skin. However, since turning 26, I feel like now is the time to start thinking of my ageing skin and well we all know it's essential to nurture your skin, regardless of how old you are. 

This is why I decided to try out Charlotte Tilbury Magic Night Cream.  However, like every product I choose to invest my money in,  I went online beforehand to read what other people have thought about it, and well let me be honest and say there are mixed reviews. 

You may be wondering why I decided to try it? Well, I have sworn by Charlotte Tilbury products for a long time now and this is what made my decision. I understand that not everyone is going to be into this product. I don't think that's possible. However, since having a great reaction to Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, I couldn't possibly see this product ever be bad.

I wanted to review this properly, so I have been trialling this cream for a little over a month, and my first thoughts... I love it.

Okay, I'm not saying it's perfect. However, since using it, my skin feels nourished and soft in the morning. I have a glow which I haven't had in a long time and I haven't broke out in spots which I have read others have. 

Now, there are some negatives - or should I say, there are some things you have to get use to - but overall, it's a really good cream.

The negatives are that the consistency of the cream is rather thick. It worried me at first, because I have combination skin and I was concerned that this would break me out. Fortunately, it didn't. 

Another thing is the smell isn't the greatest. It has what I can only describe as a medicinal scent which can be off putting. I think that's one of the main reasons that people have written bad reviews.  It doesn't bother me so much, I think I have become use to it.

I would advise testing this out before purchasing. Maybe see if you can get a sample to see if it works for you. £100 is a pricey number to pay for a product you're unhappy with.

We are all different and have different opinions. However, I think it's a great cream and will continue to use it. I am hoping that this will keep the wrinkles at bay.. I'm hoping!





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Monday, 25 April 2016

Chocolate Concrete


Chocolate concrete was one of my most favourite desserts as a kid. I use to have this with custard at primary and secondary school and it was delicious! It's a great treat to take with your lunch - although, it's filled with sugar so if you're dieting - STAY AWAY :). 

My dad also use to make this at home as a treat for us all, and it was always an exciting time as myself and my brothers and sister LOVE it. If I can describe the taste, it's a mixture between a chocolate brownie and a shortbread biscuit. 

If you do choose to make this quick and tasty dish, I would suggest you eat it with either custard or ice-cream. However, you can eat it without anything and it's equally delicious and worth making. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 160g butter
  • 1 egg
  • 25g cocoa powder
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 175g sugar (granulated)
METHOD
  1. Preheat oven to gas mark 3/170'C or 160'C (fan oven)
  2. Melt the butter (This can be done either on the hob or microwave), add the sugar and mix well using a wooden spoon 
  3. Add the flour and cocoa and mix well until you have a stiff consistency
  4. Beat the egg and gently mix into the flour mixture
  5. Put the mixture into a greased 30cm x 18cm baking tray, gently press into the corners and flatten into the tin
  6. Sprinkle with a little water and place in the top half of the oven for 35 minutes
  7. Remove from oven and sprinkle with sugar
  8. Allow to cool for 5 minutes then cut into required size pieces and place on a wire tray
Enjoy! x
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Sunday, 17 April 2016

Kiehl's Ultra Moisturiser SPF 30

I was introduced to Kiehl's Ultra Facial Moisturiser by one of my colleagues at work. I have been looking for a great face cream that I can also take on holiday with me and get the coverage I need from the sun.

I have combination skin, so finding a face cream that will both nourish and nurture my skin, but also refrain from making me oily is a difficult find. I have used this for over two weeks and I can honestly say, it's perfect. It is light and easy to use. It doesn't make me greasy and provides me with the protection that I need.

I have trialled so may facial creams and have found that there are a rare few that can achieve what Kiehl's has. It's affordable and worth every penny.

Another bonus is that this is now my go-to sun cream. It's going to be great when I go on holiday and not get a rash on my face - which is what usually happens when I use sun cream.

The only negative about this product is the packaging. Which let's be honest, is ugly! It looks like a medicine bottle and if this had not been recommended to me by a friend, I wouldn't have thought it was any good. Not quite sure why Kiehl's wouldn't make more of an effort with this. However, who cares about an ugly bottle when the ingredients are amazing.


Check out the video review here.
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Sunday, 3 April 2016

8 Apps worth having

Spring has arrived. I cannot believe how quickly this year is flying by. 2016 has been incredibly busy already, so planning my time has never been more crucial. The one thing I felt I fell behind on the most in 2015 was organisation. My blogging schedule and also my videos never seemed to go up on time and I would go weeks on end without actually uploading anything. 

This year, all that's changing! I have no excuse for last year, I just let everything get away from me. My plan for this year is to focus on both my blog and YouTube channel and produce some epic content for you all. To help me achieve this, I have downloaded a variety of apps to get me both organised and keep me in contact with you all.  Of course, some of these I had already, but others I was introduced to at the beginning of this year and they have changed my life - okay slightly drastic, but they have helped a great deal.


Instagram:
Yes, we all use Instagram - this has been a fantastic app to share what I'm up to. Whether there is any new content on my blog, or whether I have a new video to upload I always post a picture on my page to show you guys. I also use Instagram for my health and fitness, sharing food ideas and updates about my gym progress. It's all about be focused and loving who you are. 


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Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream


I am officially a girl obsessed. Since last year, my obsession with Charlotte Tilbury beauty products has reached a whole new level. From buying her lipsticks to then buying her foundation, and now her skin-care range - I am in love. 

I've had such a great experience with her beauty products, that I decided it was time to try out her skin-care products. After turning 25 - almost two years ago now (crying face), I felt the need to start caring more for my skin. After using various face creams with little success. I thought a more luxury brand would do the trick. 

Having the right combination of products within your skin-care routine is vital when trying to keep your skin young and fresh. This Magic cream consists of SPF 15 - to keep you protected from the sun, Damask Rose Water and Rosehip Oil. 

I use this in the morning immediately after I have washed my face. It's a great product to use to moisturise my skin, and I have also found that it's great as a base for my makeup too.  After using this for over one month, I have found great results. 

So far, it has kept my skin dewy and fresh. To begin with, I had one or two unwanted pimples which I think was down to changing my moisturiser, but now it's fantastic. I have combination skin, which can always prove difficult when trying to find the perfect moisturiser.  But I have to say, I would definitely recommend this to anyone. 

It is expensive - £70 a pot, however, it lasts a long time and you only need to use a small amount. Definitely worth every penny!
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Thursday, 24 March 2016

Editors reading list

There is nothing like finding a good book to get lost in. I am huge lover of reading brilliantly written novels, regardless of the genre. I thought it would be great to share some of the books that I have loved reading over the past few years. 

This is just a few that I have loved and as you can imagine, it would be an incredibly laborious task to list every book I have ever read - we would be here for days. So, I decided to highlight just a few of my favourites that would be worth your time. 

Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian 
This is a novel which takes you into the life of a badly abused young boy named Willie who finds safety and love when he goes to live with a lonely man - better known as Mister Tom, during World War II. The basis of the story is truly riveting, complex, and extremely emotional. Yes, it's a children's book, but in many ways, adults can learn a thing or two about compassion, history and ways of the world. My favourite book, and one that I couldn't put down. 

Scandalous by Tilly Bagshawe
Read my review here

One Day by David Nicholls 
This book takes you on a journey of a love story that spans over twenty years. When Dexter and Emma meet on the night of their graduation in 1988, their one night of good sex isn't long lived.  However, this connection appears to be more than what it seems and you witness snapshots of their relationship  on the same day of each year (July 15th). There are big fights, new love, old love, sex, laughter, tears and of course, missed opportunities. It's honestly one of the most devastating books I have ever read, with twists and turns that are so unexpected. Such a fabulous read. 

Bone Collector by Jeffrey Deaver 

This book is about Lincoln Rhyme, who was once a brilliant criminologist. Known for his genius work in the field of forensics, until a tragic accident left him bed ridden and broken. However, all this changes, when a serial killer challenges his mind to a terrifying game of 'catch me if you can'. When New York's finest are unable to figure out the clues, Rhyme and police detective Amelia Sachs must step in to assist.  Gripping, dark and worth the read. 

Along came a spider by James Patterson 

The classic thriller that launched the Alex Cross series. There are so many things happening within this book, that it's hard to put down.  There's a missing child,  a family of three who are  brutally murdered and the thrill-killing of a school teacher. So much to take in, it's compelling, excellently written and honestly brilliant. 

No country for old men by Cormac McCarthy 

A horrific chain of events which all start with bullet-ridden bodies and a case filled with money. Things start to unravel and you can guarantee it was never going to be smooth sailing. A thrilling book, with brutal outcomes. 

The lovely Bones by Alice Sebold 
One of the worst events that could ever happen to a family - the death of a child. However, this story isn't just sad. It's devastating. You read the story of teenage victim, Susie Salmon, who takes you through the details of her death from her own little space in heaven. She describes every sickening aspect of her murder as she watches her family and the murderer intensely. Witnessing her family grieve and want justice - with little information to go on, and her murderer looking for his next victim. 

Such an intense and heart-wrenching book. Gripping and very detailed.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Reading pages of Amy's diary, you follow the story of a married couple with a problematic relationship. Endless series of lies, deceit, and inappropriate behaviour - mixed in with a missing person and potential murder investigation. Hot in the media and with pressure from the police, evidence begins to mount up against Nick Dunne - but is he a killer?  

Twisted thriller which will keep you glued to the pages.
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Tuesday, 15 March 2016

As women get older


When does it all start to change? 

Have you ever consider this question? I was recently having this discussion with a few girl friends at work, and we came to the conclusion that we did not know. 

It's not just a fashion thing, although, this is what originally triggered my curiosity and questions. Personally, I think it starts off small. So small that we hardly notice the switch. Style changes, such as when you start believing that skirt or dress is too short for you. But at what point does this mentality kick in? 

I am 26, and already there are things that I do differently, it's partly due to the maturing process, but there is also something else - JUDGEMENT. 

It all started over a casual chat about Topshop - surprise surprise - my once favourite fashion store is now one that I hardly shop in due to the lack of good finds and the fact that the majority of clothing I now see within the stores are made for overtly skinny 12-18 year old's. This general chat escalated into what we think we can and cannot wear now. When did a group of 26 year old's start feeling self conscious about how we dress?

I almost feel prudish when I speak about this, because I would love to wear a crop top and feel confident. However, the thought of having my slightly flabby midriff out makes me shudder. Maybe it's all to do with confidence. 

I then started to flick through my Facebook - why oh why did I ever think it was cool to wear a belt over my clothes - what the fuck. Apart from realising that 18 year old me had no fashion sense, I also realised that in the last 10 years there has been a switch. 12 - 18 year old's are now wearing clothes that 20 - 30 year old's would wear. There is no longer a barrier between us - apart from the crop tops, they can have those. 

I think children are no longer children - well at least they do not act this way, they have become overly sexualised and have a broad platform to showcase this. To be quite honest, I feel sad. Having a childhood where you're treated like a child is something I treasure. The change in society has made a grown-up child more acceptable.  

Due to this, I believe that women in their mid 20's are being forced to mature quicker. Not necessarily in personality, but in other ways. We dress older to set ourselves apart, then more developments happen which are more to do with age - taste buds change, that fruit cider changes into red wine or G&T and then bam - I'm practically 40.  

Okay, that's a slight over exaggeration and there is nothing wrong with being 40. However, I think I have found an answer to this laborious question - well at least one answer as there are no doubt many. 

So, when does it all start to change? 

I think you change when society does. I think social media is a key influencer and I think we as women change, when our surroundings change, this can be due to confidence, marriage, children or general lifestyle choices. I am a firm believe that you're only as old as you feel. So therefore, we age when we start to feel older which inevitably triggers change. 
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