Friday 27 February 2015

Pretty In Pink

Top - Topshop / Skirt - Fashion Union* / Shoes - Garage Shoes
Bag - Whistles / Necklace - Mikey* / Watch - Shore Projects*

Being somewhat challenged in the neck department I used to always avoid buying high-neck tops. I'm really struggling to find clothes that I like at the minute because everything seems to have a turtleneck. Even worse, most of these high-neck tops are cropped as well. Whilst I do like 90s fashion some of it is just so ugly & unflattering. These ribbed funnel neck tops from Topshop are my current fave as they're still on trend but they aren't cropped & the neckline is just right for me. I have them in a few colours but I wear the black one the most. I'm kinda tired of wearing dull Wintery colours so today I paired it with lots of pink things. I adore this bubblegum pink skirt from Fashion Union. It's a bit of a nightmare to iron & creases up again as soon as I sit down but it's such a pretty colour! I really like how the high shine material looks too. Not totally sure if A-line skirts suit my figure but I'm stuck in a bit of a fashion rut & fancied trying something new.

I'm also loving this gorgeous pink necklace from Mikey at House Of Fraser. Although House Of Fraser are generally considered to be a high-end department store they also sell a wide range of more affordable brands. They have so many beautiful pieces of jewellery available. I chose this one because I really liked the combo of pink & clear gems with a gold rope chain. It's so lovely & goes with loads of outfits. I've gone a bit shoe crazy lately & seem to have bought rather a lot of new ones! I'm so glad that chunky heels are everywhere right now because they're so comfy to wear but still give me some much needed height. I've always wanted a pair of tassel loafers but I'd never been able to find any that I liked until now. These ones are from Garage Shoes & they are perfection!

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Thursday 26 February 2015

Flamingo Gifts

When you live in rented accommodation, it can be difficult to make your house feel like a home. Hardly anything in my house is to my taste. I wish I could swap the yellow walls, green curtains & red leather sofas in our living room for something more Pinterest-worthy but we're not really allowed to redecorate. That's why shopping for cute & quirky homeware items is one of my favourite things to do. Small changes can make all the difference & something like a new candle, cushion or storage box can transform different areas of your home without breaking the bank or angering your landlord. So when Flamingo Gifts kindly offered me the chance to pick some items from their online shop I was completely overjoyed! Their website is a veritable treasure trove of unique & fun gifts that are sure to put a smile on anyone's face. Be prepared to spend hours looking through their shop because everything they sell is simply amazing! Here are the wonderful gifts that I was sent...

I've always wanted to have a Buddha statue somewhere in my home. I'm not a Buddhist or anything but I just think they look really cool. They're a symbol of good luck & having one on display can enhance the good Feng Shui in a room. I like my decorative pieces to be functional as well so that's why I chose this golden ceramic Buddha Soap Dish*. I needed a soap dish for my Dr Bronner's soap that I use to wash my makeup brushes & I couldn't be happier with this one! I love anything gold! It's very eye-catching & would look awesome in either the kitchen or bathroom.

Ever since falling in love with Jill Tomlinson's book 'The Owl Who Was Afraid Of The Dark' as a child, owls have been one of my favourite animals. I was sent this stunning Pink Folk Owl Mug* & I'm completely obsessed with it. I pretty much only drink out of this mug now. I normally use a cocoa mug for my hot drinks so I'm really glad that this mug is absolutely huge! I can't be dealing with tiny cups of tea or hot chocolate! The detailing is just beautiful & it also comes in blue. Both mugs would make such a lovely set together.

This Baby Squirrel Night Light* is just so cute! Chloe won't sleep without a night light & her one broke recently so I requested it especially for her. It fits in nicely with the rest of her bedroom decor & adds a warm comforting glow to the room. The light is powered by LEDs & runs on batteries so it's safe for young children. This charming little squirrel has fast become one of Chloe's favourite bedtime companions as he emits just enough light to keep the scary shadow monsters away through the night.

I love quirky storage pieces and this Wu & Wu Tiffin Tin* is no exception. The colourful designs on each layer are completely adorable with things like kitties, deer & roses. It's made from food grade tin so it would be perfect for stashing away sweets or cookies. However you could keep anything in it really. At the minute I've got it in my bedroom as hair storage because I'm forever losing my bobby pins & hair bands so it's great to finally have a proper place to put them. Plus I can sneak a few treats in there as a midnight snack!

I'm so happy with everything I received & I can't thank Flamingo Gifts enough for sending me so many lovely items! Their website is full of cute little gifts like these & I'd definitely recommend checking them out whether you're buying a present for someone or just want to spruce up your home. There really is something for everyone on there & I can guarantee you'll fall in love with it all. What do you think of Flamingo Gifts?

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Wednesday 25 February 2015

Marie Meili Lingerie

Marie Meili Winsom T-Shirt Bra* / Marie Meili Winsom Hipster Briefs*

Even though underwear is such a basic essential thing, there's something very exciting about getting a new set of lingerie. I was recently treated to this gorgeous cobalt bra & knicker set from Marie Meili at House Of Fraser. I'd never tried anything from Marie Meili before but I'm so pleased with this lovely set & will definitely be looking out for them next time I pop into HOF. Their underwear range is both excellent quality & good value for money with a plethora of beautiful designs available. This is their Winsom set which is lavished in floral lace accents. The design is super feminine and I really love the vibrant colour. The material is wonderfully silky soft & feels very comfortable to wear.

A good bra can make you feel like a million dollars & I normally go for T-Shirt bras like this one. They look pretty on their own & create a smooth silhouette underneath your clothes too. In my opinion they're a staple style that every girl should have in their repertoire. This particular bra is very supportive & uplifting. It has just the right amount of padding to subtly boost your cleavage & looks sexy without being too revealing. It's perfect for everyday wear but won't fail to impress in the bedroom either.

The knickers are a hipster brief style which are great if you've got wide hips like me. They offer a little more coverage & help to balance out your body shape. The soft stretchy lace feels nice against the skin & thankfully these pants don't bunch up in uncomfortable places. The delicate frilly edges give them a really flattering shape. I think that hipster briefs also make your bum look a bit more pert so they might help you out if you've been slacking on the squats lately. Overall I think this Winsom set is absolutely stunning & as both pieces are currently on sale you'd be hard-pressed to find a better deal on luxury lingerie!

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Tuesday 10 February 2015

Flamingo Candles Love Bug

Flamingo Candles Love Bug Glitter Valentine Candle* - £12

For Valentine's Day 2014 Flamingo Candles brought out their incredible Love Potion candle. I honestly didn't think they would be able to top it's delicious sugary sweet scent but boy have they proved me wrong! Love Bug is this year's Valentine candle and it's fragrance is on a whole 'nother level. Apparently Love Bug combines blends of mandarin & petitgrain with subtle undertones of cinnamon. I found this description quite strange because I was sent a very festive Arran Aromatics mandarin & petitgrain candle at Christmas & these two candles couldn't smell any more different. Love Bug is certainly fruity but sugar is the pervasive note here. To me it smells like a cross between strawberry sherbet and rhubarb & custards. It's even sicklier than Love Potion was & I'm absolutely loving it! Love Potion reminded me of being in a sweet shop whereas Love Bug is more like stuffing your face with a huge bag of pick 'n' mix. The fragrance is so much more powerful & gives you an intense hit of sugar without the excess calories.

This candle doesn't just smell amazing but it looks really beautiful too. I'm completely obsessed with Flamingo Candles' unique square jar packaging. My whole mantlepiece is full of them now! The combination of the candy coloured waxes & their signature acrylic Florrie flamingos is just way too cute. Love Bug looks even more special because they've added purple glitter to the baby pink candle wax. When the wax begins to melt it changes into a hot pink shade & the glitter floating within simply looks stunning. Love Bug was made using hand-poured EcoSoya soy wax and features a natural cotton wick resulting in a cleaner, longer & non-toxic burn. Each of these classic square jar candles offers up to 50 hours of burn time so they're such excellent value for money. Love Bug is a real sweet treat & would be a sure-fire winner with the one you love. Valentine's Day is the perfect excuse to fill your home with all things pink & sparkly and it'd make a wonderful gift for anyone regardless of their relationship status. It's nice to find something that isn't your typical floral scent at this time of year. If you burn this candle on Valentine's Day then love will most definitely be in the air!

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Tuesday 3 February 2015

Arran Aromatics Stargazer Valentine's Candle

Arran Aromatics Stargazer Valentine's Candle* - £20

Valentine's Day is fast approaching and if you're still on the lookout for something special for the one you love then you should definitely check out this gorgeous candle from Arran Aromatics. Packaged within a stunning heart shaped gift box, this candle would make the perfect Valentine's present. It's almost worth buying for the gift box alone! Everything about it is simply exquisite. The heavy glass jar is etched with an intricate floral pattern & comes with a metal lid. Opening it up is akin to being presented with a huge bouquet of fresh flowers because that's exactly what it smells like! There's nothing I love more than receiving flowers on any romantic occasion but more often then not you can't actually smell them once they're on display. Burning this candle authentically recreates the smell of a bouquet and gently disperses it around the room for everyone to enjoy.

This candle is scented with Arran Aromatics' limited edition Stargazer fragrance. It's a glorious blend of fresh white floral jasmine, orange flower & tuberose. Jasmine is one of my favourite scents so I'm completely enamoured with it's beautiful fragrance. It's a warm and delicately floral scent that will add an air of romance to any room. I've really enjoyed burning it in the bathroom & bedroom for it's wonderfully sensual aroma. The candle has a burn time of up to 25 hours so it'd be a lovely accompaniment to any romantic night in. Even if you don't have a special someone in your life right now, Valentine's Day is always a good excuse to treat yourself & this candle is one amazing treat!

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Swell Advanced Volumizing 3-Step System

Swell Advanced Volumizing 3-Step System Trial Kit* - £23.50

Products that can give oodles of life & volume to fine, flat hair are very hard to come by. My hair has always been quite fine but at least I had a lot of it. That was until I started bleaching it to death and it began to break & shed excessively. I've been trying to take care of it a lot more recently with both protein & moisture treatments and although my hair has become a lot healthier it still looked a bit flat & lifeless. Luckily I've found an amazing solution to this problem all thanks to British haircare brand Swell. Their breakthrough 3-step system is all you need for stronger, thicker, healthier looking hair. Swell's unique all-natural formula gives you full, voluminous locks from the very first wash. All three of their core products feature their special Root Nutrient Complex which nourishes the hair follicles, boosting hair growth & reducing hair loss over time. The Swell range is free from silicones, parabens, SLS & chemical build-up. Their products are also colour-safe & cruelty-free.

The first step is to wash your hair using the Advanced Volumizing Shampoo. This product deeply cleanses the hair and begins the volumising process. As well as being innovative in terms of ingredients, the application method for Swell's products might be a bit different to what you're used to. On the instructions Swell list the precise amount of product that you should be using to wash your hair. Then you're supposed to wash the roots only, avoiding the mid-lengths and ends. This stops the rest of your hair from drying out & keeps split ends at bay. The shampoo lathers really well despite the lack of SLS. It has a pleasant herbal scent & leaves my roots feeling squeaky clean. It also inhibits excess sebum production from the scalp & soothes irritation.

The next step is to apply the Advanced Volumizing Conditioner. This product continues the volumising process & leaves hair free from tangles. The conditioner has that same lovely herbal scent as the shampoo. Again you have to measure out the correct amount & leave it in your hair for a certain amount of time depending on the length of your hair. You mainly apply this product from the mid-lengths to ends but draw it through the roots with your fingers before rinsing it all out. The conditioner feels really light yet is extremely nourishing at the same time. It makes my hair feel silky soft & look super shiny all whilst adding some serious volume. This is such a wonderful conditioner & you only need a tiny amount for perfectly moisturised locks.

The real star product in this range has to be the Advanced Root Nutrient Complex. As much as I love both the shampoo & conditioner, if I could only buy one product from Swell then this would have to be it. This spray features a unique blend of eighteen active botanical extracts designed to create superior volume all day long plus essential root nourishment to promote hair growth. After towel drying your hair simply spray some of the product onto the roots & massage into the scalp. It doesn't feel sticky or oily in any way. It kinda reminds me of a souped-up version of the TRESemmé Renewal Hair & Scalp Tonic. I really love that stuff but this is even better as it provides immediate lasting volume as well as caring for your scalp. After a quick blow dry my hair is left feeling so much thicker & fuller. No other volumising spray can compare to this.

The Swell Advanced Volumizing products have completely changed my hair for the better. Not only do they make my hair look big & bouncy but the condition of it has improved a lot too. I've had hardly any breakage at all. Normally clumps of my hair come out when I wash it, now it's been reduced to just a couple of strands. Before I suffered from greasy roots & dry ends but these products have balanced out my hair beautifully. The advanced natural actives make my roots feel cleaner & lighter for longer so I can stretch out the time between washes even further. If you have fine, limp or thinning hair then I cannot recommend them enough. The only downside to these products is that they are incredibly expensive! If you were to purchase the full sized bottles of the 3-step system it would cost you a whopping £79. However I am actually considering investing in them because my hair hasn't felt this thick in years. I imagine they would last for months though. Even this little sample kit lasted for about 10 washes. I'd highly recommend buying the grab bag first as it's a brilliant introduction to the Swell range. One wash with these magical volume boosting goodies & you'll be hooked too!

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Monday 2 February 2015

Bimuno IMMUNAID Prebiotic Pastilles + £500 Gift Card Giveaway!

Bimuno IMMUNAID Prebiotic Pastilles* - £9.99

Healthwise, the past few years have been quite difficult for me. I suffer from anxiety and the biggest cause of it is my gut. In turn my anxiety exacerbates my gut problems. It's a vicious cycle & one that is very hard to break even after having CBT. With therapy it is possible to change the way you think about certain situations but when your body won't cooperate with your mind, it makes things a lot more difficult. Although I've never been clinically diagnosed I'm pretty sure that I have some form of IBS. I've mentioned my love of health supplements many times before. One of the reasons I take so many is in order to keep my stomach under control. The main thing that helps me is taking probiotics which are live bacteria that are good for the digestive system. They also help to boost the immune system, prevent UTIs & yeast infections and clear acne & eczema.

Things like Yakult & Activia are next to useless but I've had a lot of success with probiotic pills. The ones I currently take contain five billion microorganisms per capsule so they're really potent. I was recently contacted by Bimuno to see if I would be interested in trying their IMMUNAID chewable prebiotic pastilles. Prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates that act as food for probiotics. They further boost the effects of probiotics by ensuring the survival of good bacteria in the gut. Basically it's a really good idea to take probiotics & prebiotics together for optimum gut health. All of the products in the Bimuno prebiotics range feature their unique patented Galacto-oligosaccharides in various quantities. IMMUNAID also contains vitamin C which contributes to the normal function of the immune system making it an ideal supplement for the Winter cold & flu season.

I've been taking IMMUNAID for the past few weeks & I have actually noticed a difference in my body. Every morning after breakfast I eat two of the pastilles. The benefits build over time so it's important to keep taking them every day. Despite their orange appearance the pastilles don't actually taste of oranges. The taste is a little odd but they're still sweet & pleasant to eat. They are suitable for adults & children over six years old. Anyone with a weak or compromised immune system would benefit from taking this product. Ever since Chloe started school she's been picking up loads of colds & normally they quickly spread around our home. I've managed to avoid catching any illnesses so far this year & I think that taking these prebiotics has probably helped with that. When Chloe turns six next year I'll definitely buy some for her too. In terms of my stomach issues everything has felt a lot calmer & more comfortable recently. My anxiety has lessened as a result & I feel less sluggish overall. One of the side effects of IBS is bloating & I've found that these help massively with that problem. I'm going to continue taking these as I feel that they work in harmony with the probiotics I was already taking. If you ever struggle with digestive discomfort or have a poor immune system then I would highly recommend trying some of the Bimuno products.

Even if you don't normally suffer from stomach problems, prebiotics are really useful if you're travelling abroad. The best way to protect against foreign tummy bugs is by boosting the good bacteria in your gut. However your natural digestive balance can be affected by things like foreign food or drink, the climate and even the stress of travelling itself. Most people rely on measures they can take once the problem has occurred but it's far better to be prepared before you go away by taking one of the Bimuno products. In case you're planning a trip abroad Bimuno are currently running a competition to win a £500 Trail Finders gift card. You can spend it on any trip or flight organised through Trail Finders. Simply enter using the widget below. Good luck!

Win a £500 Trail Finders Giftcard

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January Favourites

Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm in Sultry
I would have to say that these Revlon chubby lipstick pencils are my favourite drugstore lip products. I really liked both the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains & the ColorBurst Lacquer Balms but at the minute I'm really into matte lips. They tend to last a lot longer throughout the day and they never transfer onto my wonky teeth which is always a hazard with any other kind of bright lipstick. I decided to get one of the Matte Balms in the shade Sultry & I couldn't be any happier with it. I'd been wanting to add some deep berry shades to my collection but sometimes they can look a bit harsh for everyday wear. Sultry is basically the perfect Winter berry lipstick for me. This colour is a dark pink with brown & plum tones. However on my light complexion it transforms into a rich burgundy shade. It's vampy without looking too gothic & it has a soft velvety finish that doesn't look flat. It doesn't feel heavy or dry out my lips either as it features a triple butter complex of shea, mango & coconut butters. I'm completely obsessed with this colour & I've pretty much been wearing it non-stop since I bought it.

Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow Primer
My favourites list for this month could've easily been made up of just Charlotte Tilbury products. The obsession is real! After getting tons of her products for Christmas I actually went out and bought some more. This time I got a few of her base products and I've been particularly impressed by the Wonderglow primer. This product is a peach-toned liquid illuminator that instantly perks up dull skin. It can be used underneath your foundation to give you that lit from within look, on top of foundation as a traditional liquid highlighter or on it's own as a quick pick me up for the skin. The finish is quite sparkly so if you're not a fan of glitter then you might wanna give it a miss. I like to use Wonderglow as a primer before foundation because it has loads of amazing skin benefits. It feels really light on the skin whilst still delivering a hefty dose of hydration. I love how beautiful & radiant it makes my skin look. It really is an incredible product!

The Pro Hygiene Collection Antibacterial Makeup Spray
I have terrible hoarding tendencies & I like to hang onto my makeup products a little longer than I probably should do. I figure that if the smell, texture & function of the product remain the same as when you first purchased it then it's a bit of a waste to get rid of it. The main thing to consider is bacteria growth. This wonderful antibacterial spray from The Pro Hygiene Collection will remove 99.99% of bacteria from your cosmetics & doesn't affect the products in any other way. Thanks to this product I've been able to keep hold of all my old favourite powders, blushers & eyeshadows without fear of giving myself spots or eye infections. Just spray it on something once, wait for it to dry and you're good to go. It will also inhibit future bacteria growth on anything you use it on so it's a really good way of keeping all your products clean & sanitary.

Sarah Chapman Intense Hydrating Booster
My favourite kind of serums are ones that contain hyaluronic acid. It all started with Hydraluron and the obsession went on from there. I'd been wanting to try some Sarah Chapman products for ages & when I spotted her Intense Hydrating Booster in the Feel Unique sale I knew it was time for a splurge. I'm so glad I bought it because this is one of those products where your skin looks 100x better from the first time you use it. It has a light watery consistency and feels really silky & comforting on the skin. My complexion instantly looks brighter & plumper when I use it. This product deeply hydrates the skin & makes it feel super soft. It has fast become my favourite hyaluronic acid-based serum & words cannot express how brilliant it truly is.

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer in NC15
It's been quite a while since I've bought a MAC base product. Back in the day I tried out all of their foundations before realising that they oxidised really badly on my skin & always broke me out. But I've been hearing so many good things about their Pro Longwear Concealer, mainly that it doesn't crease around the eyes which is really important to me. I decided to get it in NC15 & I am completely loving it! It feels lightweight despite it's long lasting nature & extremely high coverage. It doesn't crease on me at all & it also works well as an eyeshadow base. The packaging makes it a little awkward to use but I appreciate how hygienic the pump is. It works well under the eyes as well as on blemishes without ever looking cakey. Pro Longwear is definitely my favourite out of all the MAC concealers & I can't recommend it enough!

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