Monday, 24 November 2014

JewelCandle Sweet Cupcake + Giveaway

JewelCandle Sweet Cupcake Classic Edition Candle - £24.95

Candles & jewellery are two of my very favourite things. Imagine my delight when I discovered that JewelCandle combine both of them together to create a range of luxury handmade candles with a jewellery surprise hidden inside. It's such a fun concept! They're kinda like a Kinder egg for adults, only instead of a toy you get a beautiful piece of jewellery. Here I have the Sweet Cupcake classic edition candle which comes in this large glass jar with a cute ribbon on top. This candle has a burn time of up to 120 hours although the fragrance is so sweet that it takes no time at all to fill a room. Honestly it smells incredible! The scent is exactly like freshly baked vanilla cupcakes. It's a mouthwatering creamy vanilla with notes of yummy caramel. This fantastic candle brings a very warm & welcoming ambience to my home which I love. It really does smell good enough to eat!

Every JewelCandle comes with the choice of a ring or a pair of earrings in sterling silver. As I have stretched earlobes I decided to go for the ring. The interesting part here is that you have no idea what kind of design you're going to get & your new piece of jewellery could be worth anything from £10 up to a whopping £250! You can see a bit of foil inserted into the back of the candle. It is placed quite far up the candle so that you don't have to wait long to get your surprise, I'd say about 15 hours maximum. This special foil contains your jewellery & is heat-resistant so it won't get damaged at all by the flame. Inside the foil there is also a plastic zip locked bag to further protect your jewellery from coming into direct contact with the liquid wax.

When the candle has burned down a bit you can start to see the foil peaking out from the top of the wax. After a few nights of burning the candle I could finally reach my piece of jewellery. While the wax was still warm I scooped out the package with a spoon and eagerly unwrapped my surprise. Inside was a gorgeous blue heart shaped gemstone ring. The ring is made from 925 sterling silver and features a double row of white gemstones along the top of the band. I have no idea how much it is actually worth but it looks absolutely stunning nonetheless. I love the sapphire blue shade & it sparkles wonderfully. You don't get to choose the ring size but it fits my middle finger exactly which is about a UK size M. It is a bit of a gamble as to whether you'll like the ring or not but I couldn't be more pleased with the one that I received.

JewelCandle have kindly given me a 10% discount code for their website so this is the perfect opportunity to try out some of their candles. Simply enter sparklyvodka10 at the checkout. These candles would make superb Christmas gifts and I'll definitely be buying a few more for my friends. As well as their usual lineup, they currently have some lovely seasonal scents available such as Gingerbread, Santa Claus & Merry Christmas which will fit in nicely with the rest of your Christmas decorations.

Alternatively if you fancy winning one of these amazing treats then you should enter my giveaway! I've teamed up with JewelCandle to offer one lucky reader a Sweet Cupcake ring candle of their very own. To enter just use the Rafflecopter widget below. The giveaway will run for two weeks from November 24th to December 8th & is open to UK readers only. The prize is being provided by JewelCandle & will be sent to the winner by them. I will announce the winner via my Twitter so keep an eye out for that. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Saturday, 22 November 2014

Getting Cosy For Autumn With Arran Aromatics

Autumn has to be my favourite time of year. It might be cold outside but that means plenty of nights in snuggled up on the sofa with a warm blanket. At the moment I can't say there's anything else I'd rather do in the evening than drink mugfuls of hot chocolate whilst wearing my Primark bunny twosie AKA the best pyjamas ever. As the nights are drawing in I feel like there's more time for a bit of pampering and that is one of my favourite ways to relax. Last month Arran Aromatics sent over this wonderful gift box filled with all sorts of Autumnal treats. I've been using these products as part of my evening pamper routine and there's nothing I look forward to more at the end of a long day.

I normally start off my pamper routine by lighting a few candles. I'm pretty candle obsessed in general but when it starts getting dark at 5pm I always have at least one burning in my house. I love eating fresh figs & think they smell gorgeous so I was excited to see this Ultimate Fig Scented Candle* in the box. This is the travel candle version so I burned through this quite quickly but I liked it's subtle woody notes combined with the scent of honeyed fig & cassis. It has such a light fragrance that I think it is best suited to the bedroom so you can enjoy it's gentle ambience before you go to sleep.

Next I like to run a hot bath so I can have a long relaxing soak. Lavender is one of my favourite scents for bath products because it helps to induce sleep. This Sandalwood & Lavender Bath Oil* is the epitome of indulgence. It smells incredible and the aroma is so calming for both body & mind. It makes my skin feel super soft as it contains coconut & wheat germ oil and the delicate scent lingers on my body for hours. The label says it all really, it leaves me feeling totally relaxed and ready to dive into bed.

These soap bars are some of my favourite products from Arran Aromatics. Here I have the Honey & Oatmeal Vegetable Soap*. This soap has such a strong honey scent which I absolutely love. If you've ever tried the Honey Trap lip balm from Lush, it's exactly like that! This soap is a triple threat as not only will it cleanse your skin, it exfoliates & nourishes at the same time. Unlike most soaps on the market this one won't dry out your skin at all. After a bit of a soak I like to use this to scrub my body & it works wonders on any rough patches. I actually prefer these to Lush body soaps now as they're just such good value for money!

I'm pretty terrible when it comes to moisturising after a bath. I hate waiting around for products to sink in when I could be getting cosy in my fluffy PJs. My skin gets a lot drier at this time of year though & as an eczema sufferer I have to force myself to apply some. This Chamomile & Honey Barrier Cream* makes the moisturising process a lot less tiresome. The lightweight formula sinks in right away and makes my skin feel really protected. It features beeswax, shea butter, vitamin E, chamomile essential oil & pure honey extract to heal & soothe dry, chapped skin. The only thing I'm not too keen on is the smell. I wish it had the same honey scent as the soap because I'd probably like it a whole lot more.

As the weather turns colder my lips inevitably get very dry so I keep a lip balm with me at all times. My handbag is littered with lip products and this Honey & Lemon Lip Balm* is another welcome addition. It has a lovely scent that strongly reminds me of Honey & Lemon Halls Soothers. It feels very smooth on the lips & provides a glossy finish. This lip balm also features UV protection so it'd be a good choice if you're going anywhere snowy. After going through the rest of my skincare routine I finish off my lips with this and reapply it as soon as I've finished drinking copious amounts of hot chocolate & brushed my teeth for the night. By then I'm more than ready for bed & I always look forward to doing it all again the next day!

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Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Anastasia Brow Update

Anastasia DipBrow Pomade in Medium Brown / Anastasia #12 Large Synthetic Duo Brow Brush

Earlier this year I purchased & reviewed the Anastasia DipBrow Pomade in Blonde. I absolutely loved the formula of the product but as I'm obvs not a natural blonde, the colour never looked quite right on me. It was far too light & warm for my cool brown brow hairs. I had to top it up with a brow powder to make it look half decent. Then in July Anastasia added a few new shades to the DipBrow lineup including Medium Brown which is exactly the colour I was hoping for. I was tempted to get Taupe but when swatched it still looked very similar to Blonde just slightly more cool toned. Medium Brown is the perfect match for my natural brow colour as it's a little bit darker too. For reference other Anastasia products that suit my colouring are the Tinted Brow Gel in Granite & Brow Wiz in Medium Ash. Now that I finally have this product in the right colour I am completely enamoured with it. It will totally change your brow game & I can't recommend the DipBrow Pomades enough!

When I ordered the Medium Brown DipBrow Pomade I decided to also get the #12 brush as I've read so many good reviews of it. I was previously using a Laura Mercier angled brow brush and I thought that was amazing at the time but this brush is even better! It only picks up a small amount of product so your brows won't look too heavy or fake. It really helps to sculpt your eyebrows and the spoolie on the other end is excellent quality too. It makes it so easy to feather the start of your brows so there aren't any harsh lines. These two products just work so well together. They're all I've been using to fill in my eyebrows lately & I don't think mine have ever looked better.

Anastasia Brow Scissors

Another Anastasia product that I recently invested in are these adorable brow scissors. Although I would love to go & get HD Brows done someday, I currently always do my own brow maintenance. A pair of tweezers will only get you so far though & sometimes you just need to trim those hairs. I've always had a weird gap in my brows that I could tell was because I was plucking the hairs rather than trimming them. I remember following an eyebrow grooming tutorial a few years ago and I stupidly trimmed them with some kitchen scissors. They looked terrible & took ages to grow back properly! My brow shape had been bugging me lately so I bought these and gave it another go. I no longer have the weird gap as these have properly sorted out my brow arches. They are so sharp & thin that it's easy to cut individual hairs in the exact place you need to. Precision is key when it comes to grooming your own eyebrows so these are must-have if you don't have time to visit a beauty salon.

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