Sunday, July 31, 2011

New Make-Up Haul... BareMinerals, Chanel & YSL!

Hi! Long time no see! ;) I haven't blogged as much as I'd like lately... work has been very busy and I just haven't had much spare time. Fear not, I'm here now ;)

I went shopping on Saturday and bought a few things. Here are the 3 best ones...


As I have never bought a YSL lip product before (shock, horror, gasp!) I plumped for this beauty...


This lipstick is from their 'Rouge Volupte' range. Each one is highly pigmented, super-glossy and in a range of gorgeous shades. It was tough to pick one, but I chose this one:

30 - Peche Faubourg (Faubourg Peach)


The colour is a bit difficult to photograph in the tube, so I thought I would show how it looks on...


This is without any nude/concealer base (my lips are naturally very red!) This is how it looks in natural light - no flash.

The colour is quite a bright coral/peach/nude and I love it. My husband hates it, but what do men know about lipstick?! ;)

But what to wear with such a fabulous shade? Why, Chanel of course!


I chose '307 Peach Fizz'. This is the perfect shade to wear with my new 'Rouge Volupte' :)

The colour is a bright peach and I love it. I'm planning on sporting this new combo next weekend with my new black maxi-dress (River Island, £12 in the sale, bargain!!) This will really stand out (in a good way - I hope!)

My final make-up/cosmetic purchase was some powder...


I love this powder. It's by bareMinerals and I wear shade 'medium beige'.

This is the only setting powder I've found that not only sets foundation perfectly, but it also never looks cakey, blends flawlessly, gives a high level of coverage AND imparts a fabulous glow!! Don't believe me?! Get a sample from your nearest counter and see for yourself :)

For £23 you get 8g, which is not bad considering that this little pot will last me for months (with daily use).

The pot comes with a lockable sifter too...


You just break off the section (with the small tab on it) and then you can twist it to seal afterwards.

I tend to tip a little into the lid, load a kabuki brush and then buff it into my skin after I've applied foundation. If they ever discontinue this product/shade I shall cry! (So mature, I know ;)

Have you bought any of these products? Are you a 'Rouge Volupte' addict or virgin? ;) x

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Birthday Haul - New Perfumes!

As I may have mentioned (about 20 times...) it was my birthday on 25th July. To celebrate, I spent the day shopping in Bristol. I planned on going to Bath on my way home, but I just could not be bothered!! I was all shopped out (this rarely happens to me, I can assure you!) so I just decided to come home.

I ended up buying quite a bit thanks to being given money for my birthday, so here's the first part...

Perfume!


With a bit of my birthday money, I bought these 2 amazing perfumes.

I have wanted 'Oh, Lola!' for a couple of weeks now and as luck would have it, House of Fraser launched it on my birthday. It was obviously meant to be mine ;)

I chose the 50ml bottle


This is the first day that the bottle has come out of the box! That's because I was also given a sample spray, which I have been using. It's almost too nice to use!

The box is on the left and the cardboard sleeve is on the right.

I also got this amazing gift bag


This photo does not do it justice! To give you an idea of its size, I was able to fit the perfume box, plus other bags inside. They only had a few and as I was their first customer to buy this perfume I was given one free.

It came with a small piece of rock, which I don't want to eat!


I think this carrier bag will hang on my mirror with the sweet untouched inside ;)

My second perfume was from Jo Malone


I bought 30ml of Nectarine Blossom & Honey and it is amazing. Light, fresh, almost juicy, this is THE perfect summer fragrance. I originally planned to get Orange Blossom (which is also a favourite) but this won.

As I just couldn't decide which one to get, I sprayed one wrist with this and the other with Orange Blossom. Individually they are gorgeous, together they smell even better. Therefore, I shall be going online this weekend and buying the Orange Blossom. I need both!!! ;)

It came in a gorgeous box, complete with black tissue paper and gift bag


I'm planning on keeping both of my perfumes boxed - something I always do. I got the Jo Malone perfume in Harvey Nichols. Although the section is small, they have lots of lovely products on display and the staff are very helpful & welcoming. If I could, I would buy lots of their candles and have them all over my flat. Bliss!

In addition to the perfumes, I bought goodies from NARS, Creme de la Mer, TopShop, Boots, Origins, TK Maxx and Dermalogica. Everything I wanted from the new MAC collections was sold out, so for once I didn't buy anything there. I also swatched the NARS blush powders I was after and they were a bit disappointing. So, I decided to spend my birthday cash elsewhere :)

Have you bought either of these perfumes or are they on your wish list? x

Sunday, July 17, 2011

NARS at TK Maxx & Latest Hair Colour...

Yes, you read right... NARS at TK MAXX! Well, not much of it - and I don't think it's at every store - but needless to say I was amazed to see NARS on the shelf when I visited my local store yesterday.

Being NARS, I thought it would have been snapped up (although there may have been more during the week, I don't know). As I couldn't believe my eyes, I snapped up everything they had. The first item being the best...

Sheer Glow Foundation!


The shade is 'Light 6 - Ceylon' and even better? The price...


£7 flippin' 99! ;) Bargain! The icing on the cake is that the bottle looked barely touched (which is rare for TK Maxx I can assure you!) I tested a tiny bit on my hand, but I would still have bought it and made it work!

Here's a little swatch...


As I normally wear 'Light 4 - Deauville' I wasn't sure how this would compare. Thankfully, the two shades are quite similar and this works really well on my 'NW20' skin.

Ceylon & Deauville



In both pictures, 'Ceylon' is on the left and 'Deauville' is on the right. I'm wearing 'Ceylon' now and it blends into my skin really well. There are no obvious yellow or pink tones to it, so I'm so glad I snapped it up! I also got:

Eyeshadow Duo & Eyeshadow Single




These both came boxed and were also £7.99 each. Not sure why the single eyeshadow was the same price, but oh well! ;)

The duo is in the shade 'Violetta' (3061). The shade on the right is a pale pink, which has a velvet feel to it. The lilac shade on the right is a shimmery smoky lavender (it was part of the 'Douceurs de Paris Palette').

The single eyeshadow is 'Abyssinia'. This is a great base colour, which gives a light shimmer wash of beige. I would liken this to a sheerer version of MAC's 'Naked' pigment. Described by NARS as a 'delicate pearl sheen' this colour could be worn under or over pretty much anything. It's available on NARS website, which makes this even more of a bargain!

Both of the eyeshadows are shown without the flash - with it, they look totally different! This is as close as they look in the flesh :)

Moving on from make-up...

I had my hair done after work last Thursday (I love going to the salon in the evening!) I had to wait weeks for an appointment so my hair was in desperate need of attention!

As I needed to even the tone out - but had a lot of black base colour left in it - I was amazed that my hairdresser managed to transform my hair into this...





These were all taken with the flash. I love the different red/chocolate tones! She basically mixed a chocolate brown base colour with a paler red/brown shade, applied it to my roots all over and then combed it lightly through the ends.

I never thought my hair would end up with such a uniform shade all over, considering that I had black, brown, red/brown and natural roots! She is really a miracle worker and I love it. Happy hair = happy me! ;)

I'm still undecided about having blonde highlights - I might just stick to having this from now on!

Lastly, I bought some Creative Nail Solar Oil yesterday too...


I was walking to catch the train to go home and walked past a salon. This is the smallest 7.3ml bottle and it cost £6. It's been a long time since I bought a new bottle of this. It's one of those purchases that I knew I needed but I kept putting it off. Tut tut! I also need some cuticle remover, but you have to be so careful with a product like that. I might just go to a salon and indulge in a manicure :)

Finally, I went to Topshop and only got one thing...



I don't know why I love this so much, but I do!

It's super-white and cute :) It's also tiny. It measures under 1" in fact! I'm planning on wearing this with a white tee so that it just stands out.

As it cost £8.50 full price, I was happy to see this for just £3.50. The rest of the things in the sale didn't interest me, but I did see some lovely ballet flats, which were cream with a bright orange trim. They didn't have my size so I shall be looking for them in Bristol & Bath.

Hope you've all had a lovely weekend :) x

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My Aromatherapy Associates Giveaway Prize & My Bathroom...

Excuse the long-winded title of this post! I honestly couldn't come up with anything better ;) It's been a long day and "hump day" to boot so I'm just grateful that I can spell! :)

Anyway, on with the post!

Back in the middle of June I entered a giveaway on the gorgeous Nicoletta's blog. The prize consisted of 2 things from Aromatherapy Associates... De-Stress Muscle Gel (150ml tube) and De-Stress Muscle Bath and Shower Oil (55ml). The prize was worth £57 and I never expected to win. So you can imagine my delight when Nicoletta contacted me last week to say I had won! Before I do anything else, I urge you to check out her blog if you haven't done so already

Nicoletta's Beauty Space

She blogs about a wide range of subjects and always shows great pictures to back up her words. Follow her too whilst you're there - you won't regret it! x

When I got home today, my prize was waiting for me...



I love the packaging, which really adds to the overall quality of the products.

The Bath & Shower Oil contains key oils of lavender, rosemary & ginger. It smells heavenly - I smelt the oils as soon as I opened the jiffy bag!

The Bath & Shower Oil comes in a gorgeous glass bottle...


Out of the 55ml bottle, you are supposed to get approx. 20 baths. This really helps to justify the cost - there's nothing worse than buying an expensive bath product only to find the bottle empty after a third bath!

The other way it can be used is to apply it all over and then hop in the shower. I'm intending to try this later, believe me! I'll use it sparingly as I don't want to step in the shower and then slide out again ;)

Last but not least, the De-Stress Muscle Gel...


This smells gorgeous too. With rosemary, black pepper and ginger, this gel is formulated with pure essential oils and aromatic waters. Doesn't that make you feel relaxed already? :) Just apply it to tired muscles or joints and massage it in.

My husband cycles to and from work each day and was feeling particularly tired this evening. I roped him in to test this and it must have worked a treat as he is now dozing on the sofa in front of 'Tour de France'! The smell is intoxicating and is making me feel sleepy too - the smell is wafting round our flat and I love it :)

Speaking of my flat (see what I did there?) this is my bathroom...


My shower puffs are from The Body Shop and the shower gels are both by Original Source. The bathroom is super white - tiles & suite - and with the lights it glows!


This is the products I grabbed when I got in from work - yes, I just had to include my Aromatherapy Associates goodies ;) The little drawers that my products are sitting on hold shower gel, bubble bath, razor, etc. They're made of white wood and make the perfect place to rest my products whilst I'm pampering!


This is our window! As you can see, it's almost the same width as the bath - the light floods in and I love it. The little ornaments in the window are made of tin - the one on the left is a girl with a shopping basket and the one on the left is a bride. You can just make out my Liz Earle sponge next to it! The green sponge on the left is from The Body Shop, but unless you like your sponge to sandpaper 3 layers of your skin off, please avoid it!!


Spotlights! There are 3 running through the middle of the ceiling. I have always loved spotlights, so to have them in our my bathroom is amazing (little things and all that!)


My sink! The handwash is by Original Source and that's my Liz Earle Muslin Cloth draped over the side. I can assure you that it's a lot whiter than this - blame my stupid camera for making it look dull!

Sorry about the ramble, but I wanted to share my giveaway goodies as soon as possible!

If you would like to try some of their amazing products for yourself, check out www.aromatherapyassociates.com x

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My Best Blog Award!

After having to moderate my comments - thanks to some "oh-so-mature" Anonymous abuse... - it was so nice to see a comment telling me I had been awarded a "Best Blog Award"!

It's always nice to get recognition - no matter what form - and it's inspired me to renew my love of blogging. I know I shouldn't, but negative comments get me down and it's difficult not to take them personally *ahem* without further ado, here is my new award...


I love this image (and would secretly love to receive a bouquet of flowers bigger than me... ;)

This was given to me by Neelum - thanks hun! x

The rules of this award are:

1. Link back to the person who gave this to you:

www.prettygorgeousxoxo.blogspot.com/

2. Share 7 random things about yourself:

* I cannot eat a sandwich/wrap/baguette/bread with butter/mayonnaise/spread on it (fussy? moi?) ;)
* I would love to own a Shetland pony
* The only time I sing is when I'm in the car on my own - volume up, the works!
* I'm 29 on the 25th, yet I feel like I'm still 22 (I really must look in the mirror!)
* I have OCD tendencies and hate to see my stuff in the "wrong place"
* A Louis Vuitton 'Speedy 30' (or '35'!) & a Mulberry 'Alexa' are at top of my handbag wish list
* I frequently make "to do" lists

3. Award 15 blogs:

* www.pearlsandpoodles.blogspot.com
* www.buynowbloglater.com
* www.thestrawberryblondebeauty.blogspot.com
* www.mademoiselle-la-la.blogspot.com
* www.gabysbeautyblog.blogspot.com
* www.nicolettasbeautyspace.blogspot.com
* www.msredsbeautyblog.com
* www.straight-up-glam.blogspot.com
* www.willworkformakeup.blogspot.com
* www.thebeautyhall.blogspot.com
* www.stylefrost.com
* www.jo-shopaholic.blogspot.com
* www.mybutterfly63.blogspot.com
* www.justablogaboutbec.blogspot.com
* www.devorelebeaumonstre.com

4. Answer the following questions:

* Favourite colour: Taupe
* Favourite song: Far too many to pick just one ;)
* Favourite dessert: Cheesecake
* What is p*ssing you off: nothing I can't handle ;)
* When I'm upset, I: take a long bubble bath & read
* Favourite pet: my cats
* Black or White: Black - it's far more wearable!
* Biggest fear: again, too many!
* Best feature: my lips (with the right MAC lipstick on... ;)
* Everyday attitude: work hard and stay positive
* What is perfection: being yourself (corny but true)
* Guilty pleasure: watching re-runs of 'Keeping Up With The Kardashians' and 'Will & Grace'!

Phew! ;) x

Saturday, July 09, 2011

My Liz Earle Must-Haves!

Sorry folks, I'm about to wave the Liz Earle flag once again! I promise that after reading this post, you will be too :)

When it comes to products, I'm fussy. Very fussy in fact. I would go so far as to say that I can be a snob when it comes to products *hangs head in shame* :)

With pretty much any brand you get what you pay for. For example, if you buy a cheap blusher you often get poor pigment, little to no longevity and cheap ingredients. I have wasted so much money on "bargain" products only to throw them away because they were such a poor product. I won't name names, but suffice to say there are certain brands I steer well clear of.

There are certain - more natural - products that I've tried before and been disappointed. Sometimes products can be so "good for you" that they contain little more than scented water. They're also quite mild and the results can be poor. I like my products to be both good for you and to give results. On that note, here are some lovely Liz Earle products that are among my must-haves...


L-R: Eyebright, Foot Repair Moisturiser, Spot-On and Deep Cleansing Mask (Starter Kit)


Lets look at the Eyebright first...



After having run out of my eye makeup remover, I turned to this. I've read mixed reviews - some people say it works wonders; others say it does nothing for them. I'm going to come right out with it and say that I love it. It's super gentle, yet it removes all my eye makeup. I've been suffering from a small cyst on my eye (which looks like a tiny piece of jelly) and I'm sure it was down to using the Johnson's eye makeup remover. I can't think of anything else that might have caused it - it's probably my eye trying to tell me that it doesn't like cheap products!! ;)

Eyebright Soothing Eye Lotion (to give it its full title) contains eyebright, cornflower, witch hazel and organic aloe vera. I panicked when I saw witch hazel, as I was afraid that it would sting my eyes. Thankfully, this is not the case.

I use this great product in 2 ways... first of all to remove my eye makeup and then again first thing in the morning to wake-up my tired eyes. I'm sure it helps as I get up at 6am every morning for work and am often bleary-eyed. This is lovely and cooling and works a treat.

Foot Repair Moisturiser...




This is such a great foot cream. I love to take off my shoes after a long day at work, slather a generous amount over my feet and pop on some fluffy socks :) Not only does it cool my feet down, but it softens them a treat.

The cream itself is rich yet it sinks in straight away. The main ingredients are shea butter, avocado oil, peppermint and rosemary essential oils. What struck me about this cream is the smell of rosemary... lovely and herb-y :) The shea butter is what moisturisers whilst the peppermint is great for refreshing tired feet. The tube is 100ml and you only need a couple of pumps at a time so this will last me ages.

Next up is Spot-On...


This is sold as a multi-purpose product... it can be used as a spot treatment or for dealing with blemishes, bites and cuts.

My skin has recently gone to hell in a handcart (and I'm not sure when it's coming back...) ;) I'm not sure if it's because of stress, hormones or the fact that I often wear my makeup for 15 hours a day (it's applied at 6.30am and removed at about 9.30pm). Whatever the reason, I'm in need of emergency treatment!

This comes in a very handy 6ml rollerball container, which means you don't have to touch the product and then your face.

Containing natural Vitamin E and pure essential oils of tea tree, melissa and lavender, this is perfect for treating blemishes without irritating your skin.

After cleansing, dot a little onto blemishes. Re-apply throughout the day - even over makeup. Spot-On is alcohol-free and water-free.

Finally, the brilliant Deep Cleansing Mask...




This is the Starter Kit version and comes with 2 sponges and a cute mesh bag. The tube itself is 75ml.

Don't be alarmed by the colour!


The shade is somewhere between grey and green, which is due to the green clay. When applied it goes on dark green/grey and then dries to a more grey colour.

If you have combination, oily or congested skin, this mask would be perfect for you. The main ingredients are green clay, manuka honey, propolis and rose-scented geranium. Like the foot cream, this mask mainly smells of herb, which is quite nice.

After cleansing, simply apply a thin layer (avoiding eyes, lips and hairline) and leave on for 5-10 minutes. I like to apply it and then splash some Eyebright onto cotton pads, place over my eyes and relax. Preferably in the bath ;)

The mask is then removed with this handy little sponges...


About the size of a small coaster (I was going to say burger, but that spoils the effect!) place one damp sponge in each hand and wipe away all traces of mask. Simply rinse the sponges and repeat until it's all gone. Simple! The sponges will last a long time if looked after - just leave them to air dry naturally and they're good to use time and again. I use this mask once a week and it always leaves me feeling refreshed and deeply cleansed.

I also deem the Skin Essentials Trio (C&P, Skin Tonic & Skin Repair) and the Gentle Face Exfoliator among my favourite Liz Earle products. I haven't tried any of the body products or haircare, but I'd love to know what they're like.

What are your Liz Earle must-haves? x


* Although I was sent these products, I was not paid for this review and all opinions/words/photos/experiences are my own *
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