Saturday, 30 April 2011

Sunjunkie Dark Tanning Mousse £15.31

Now as much as I love my man friend and I do deeply, he has one quality that really annoys me. He goes from pasty to bronzed God in a matter of hours. I have never seen anybody tan so quickly! Of course it makes him look extra specially gorgeous but it also has the knock on effect of making me look extra pale. Pale on the right person can look more than interesting it can look fabulous, just not on me. With a holiday fast approaching I am desperately trying to find a fake tan that can keep up with my man, hopefully I am in luck. 

This tanning mousse by SunJunkie claims to be extra dark so I pin all my hopes on it and take it for a trial run. After exfoliating to within an inch of my life I carefully start to smear it over my body. The next morning I wake up and although I am a lovely bronzed colour it isn’t as dark as I would have liked. I get the feeling though that it was might fault as I was a bit nervous and might have over rubbed. A couple of days later when it has had some time to fade I give it another go. This time I am quite generous and also use the bronzing mitt making sure I don’t over rub. Oh yes, when I wake up the next morning I practically look Brazilian. My skin has a really rich colour without a hint or orange, just a lovely deep brown. What’s more I don’t smell of biscuit and there isn’t a streak in sight. Finally I can keep up with my man and now when we go out together I don’t look like I have been kept in the shade all my life. 

Friday, 29 April 2011

Makebelieve Facial Self Tan with Bronzer £25

I could go on about the benefits of a nice healthy glow but you probably already know them by now. For myself I just feel I look healthier and happier with a bit of colour on my face. It’s the first time for me trying any Makebelieve products and I am very excited. The packaging is brilliant, girly and fun. I squeeze the gloves that come with it on, they are pretty snug but don’t break which is a relief. When I squirt some product out onto my glove finger it looks a little greenish - grey which had me worried. As soon as I start rubbing it over my face though it transforms into a golden brown and my fears melt away as the lotion melts into my skin. It was really easy to apply and the hint of instant colour made sure I didn’t miss any bits of my face. I am feeling quite brave and pale so I decide that I will apply two coats, as it dries almost instantly it is easy to do this. The next morning when I wake up my face has a gorgeous sun drenched colour.  I am really happy with the result, no staining of my eyebrows or a streak in sight. When I go to work people remark on how good it looks saying it looks fabulously natural. Now I can’t wait to try some more Makebelieve products. 

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Living Nature Lip Balm £8.15

Someone I used to work with was convinced that men couldn’t smell honey. Needless to say she wouldn’t the first person I would pick if I was going to a pub quiz. What you ask has that got to do with lip balm? Well not much normally but in this lip balm from living nature quite a lot as it is made with manuka honey. It has a lovely sweet smell and I have to try hard to resist licking it off my lips. It soaks into my lips easily and isn’t sticky or rubbery. It gives lips a very light sparkle, like you have just licked your lips after a particularly sugary doughnut. 

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

GOSH Eyebrow Pencil £9.99

I have been battling with my eyebrows for a few years now. I never seemed to be able to get a decent shape, then I dyed my hair darker and I couldn’t get the colour right, then when I finally got the colour right the pencil I was using would wear off by lunch time. Eyebrows are such an important feature of our face and can drastically change the way we look. I know there seems to be a small trend for freezing your eyebrows in place with botox but I think they hold so much expression I want to be able to use that. A lifted eyebrow can be dramatic and sexy; a furrowed brow expresses anger or jealousy. Finally now though I am at piece with my brows and it’s all that’s to GOSH. A much over looked product but so necessary, GOSH’s eyebrow pencil has real staying power. I can apply it at the start of the day and it looks natural, by the end of the day even with constant wiping of my face it is still there. Thank you GOSH for re-establishing a healthy relationship with my eyebrows. 

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Berkeley Square White Tea Shea Butter Hand Cream £6.95

Amazingly I ran out of hand cream recently, very unlike me to not have several pots around the house. Having tried their hand cream before I decided that I really hadn’t had enough of Berkeley Square yet and as I had had such great experiences of them before they would be a safe bet, besides they still had scents I hadn’t yet explored. White tea might sound like a strange smell for a hand cream but it really works, perhaps that’s because it doesn’t really smell like tea at all. It more has a freshness of freshly cut grass and a femininity about it that reminds me of glamorous movie stars from black and white films. The hand cream itself is devilishly seductive, luxurious and comforting. 

Monday, 25 April 2011

Sheer Cover Duo Concealer £17.95

I have mentioned that in a week I am getting older right? Sorry to go on about it but it feels like it is a big step for some reason. When I was a youngster it seemed that every birthday was an adventure, each one brought with it a new stage in life and closer to the promise of adulthood. Now each birthday is like a window into what life has yet to bring. Now don’t get me wrong I am glad that every day I have my mind and my health. My mind keeps telling me that I am yet to reach 21; it’s just my face that is saying the opposite. The dark rings around my eyes give away that I haven’t slept as well as I should and thin lines whisper about the plenitude of expression  my face has achieved. All is not lost though for now I am armed with a range of beauty knowledge that can disguise even the worst’s night sleep.

A great concealer can hide a multitude of sins, from the spotty outbreaks I still get, the dark rings circling around my eyes like a roller coaster and the uneven skin tones that do not conform to age or lack of it. Sheer Cover concealer is great for a number of reasons. One is that as it comes in two shades which is great for the summer time when your complexion can change colour with a healthy dose of sun (from a bottle or straight up). It also comes in a really nifty disk that fits into the smallest of makeup bags for out of the house touch ups. The consistency is also perfect, thick and creamy without being chalky and drying. It doesn’t clog into creases making blemishes look worse but simply glides onto the skin giving the right amount of camouflage. It lasts all day and it’s so light you can barely tell you are wearing makeup. 

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Shampoo & Cream Rinse £12.70

I am having a battle with my hair at the moment. First it was a too drastic cut that I don’t think I was really ready for, even though everyone else seems to like it I am yet to be convinced. Then it was the colour disaster which I still haven’t recovered from and has meant my hat wearing days are very much in the now. What it has made me realise is how much my hair affects how I feel about myself and made me more determined to look after my hair and make the most out of the situation. Having decided this I thought treating it to some Paul Mitchell shampoo was a great way to show my hair that even though we have had some tough times of late I still appreciate it being around.

The shampoo was a thicker consistency than I expected but boy did it froth up into a creamy lather. It has a delicate fresh smell and made my hair clean without drying it out. The cream rinse on the other hand was thinner than I expected but considering the shampoo had worked so well I didn’t pass judgement until I have tried it. It coated my hair and made it feel immediately soft and replenished. After I dried my hair it did feel smooth and shiny and the first step to loving my hair was taken. 

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Nip + Fab Frown Fix £10.95

As I have mentioned several times it is coming up to my birthday which means I have spent hours in front of the mirror studying my face for the slightest change. Each pore seems to be opening wider to swallow my youth, while lines have started to appear mapping out the laughter and the tears of my years around my eyes. To save myself from spending my days staring at myself, scrutinising every last blemish and actually getting myself out and enjoying life I decided to try Nip + Fab frown fix. 

It just so happened that the day I got it was also the day that I had to go bridesmaid dress shopping with my sister and my mum. If ever there was a day to try out a frown product it was today. In the morning I carefully dapped on the frown fix around my eyes and forehead, instantly you can see a difference. My mother even complimented me that I looked good, a statement so rare it’s nearly on the extinct list. After several hours of trying on truly horrible dresses, which I assume they only reason they make so disgusting is to make the bride look better, we were no closer to finding the right one. We stopped for coffee and I told them about the frown fix I was using, they were both impressed and my sister even bought one for herself, apparently planning a wedding on a budget causes lots of frown lines. Thankfully after coffee we managed to find a dress we all agreed on and that didn’t make me look like I belonged in a quality street box. When I got home I looked in the mirror and rather than seeing a face that was ravaged by hours of taking my clothes off and putting them back on again and having people point at me telling me I looked bad, I saw exactly the same youthful face that I started the day with. 

Friday, 22 April 2011

Queens Cosmetics Eyeshadow & Blusher Compact from £7.95

I have already declared my love for Queens’s cosmetics so when I heard about the magnetic eyeshadow and blush sets I just had to give them a go. Mineral makeup is fast becoming one of my new obsessions; the way they felt on your face is so much lighter and natural than regular chemical-full ranges. The range of eye shadow colours is refreshingly well balanced, every skin colour will find a couple that suit them. I went for an olive and a light dusky grey and when they arrived I was really happy with my choice. The blusher I choose was a soft pink, apparently it is meant to help you look younger and as it is coming up to my birthday and I am slightly freaking out about getting older anything to retain youthfulness needs to be tried. The makeup itself is exactly what I expected from Queens, brilliant quality, truthful colours with staying power and a lightless in application that is adorable. The magnetic case is a really great idea as you can have all your colours in one place or take only a couple that you need for the day or night out. 

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

The Gentry Grooming Co. Face Balm £14.95 & Shave Cream £12.95

It’s taken me quite a few years but I have finally got my man friend to have a regular skin care regime. I honestly don’t know if it was because of my nagging or if he got jealous of all the lotions and potions I had and wanted to claim some space in the bathroom.

I got him the face balm and shave gel to try to see if I could win him over to the beauty truths side. I knew that they would have to be extremely masculine products as I once got him to put on moisturiser without either of us realising it had glitter in it, his day at work wasn’t the best he has ever had. I thought the Gentry Grooming Co. would be the most masculine I can find with its signature smell of black pepper and mint.

The shave cream had a lovely thick texture and helped the blades of his razor glide over his skin so he got a close shave with no little nicks. The mint oil helps to reduce irritation so he was left with no nasty red marks. The smell was refreshing and manly and there were certainly no complaints from him about it being too girly, even the packaging is classic and manly.

The face balm was great, first up it had no glitter in it and it also had a thick texture that when it was applied was non greasy and effortlessly melted into the skin. The mint helps it to feel lovely and refreshing and the black pepper although subtle in smell gives the skin a nice zinging feeling perfect for waking you up in the morning. My partner gets quite dry skin at times and this balm cleared it right up with its moisturising goodness.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Payot Masque Purifiant £20.50

The first thing I loved about this mask from Payot was that it was thick and chalky so when you apply it you can see it on your face. I like face masks to show on my face so when my partner comes into the bathroom (as he inevitably does when I have just run a hot bath) he knows that I have got a face mask on. For me it’s almost like a warning sign “I am relaxing so don’t bother me”. He can carefully back out of the door, run downstairs and leave me in peace.

Apart from aesthetics the mask has a deep cleansing action that works its magic in twenty minutes. I had been suffering from a mid month breakout and my skin was all lumpy and bumpy around my cheeks. It was making me quite self conscious and anything that was going to make it better was going to get a thumbs up from me. Immediately after I washed it off my skin felt smother and the texture had near enough returned to normal. I left the bathroom in a much happier state than I went in and so did my skin. From now on this mask is going to be a regular feature in my weekly skin care routine. 

Monday, 18 April 2011

Sheer Cover Cream Eyeliner £14.95

Ever since Amy Winehouse appeared on the music scene with 50’s inspired winged eyeliner, liquid liners have been experiencing a boost in sales. Now it seems every make up brand isn’t complete without a liquid style liner along with the standard kohl. You can also get gel eyeliner and glitter eyeliner in a multitudes of different colours. I have been a huge fan of winged eyeliner for many years, I have quite small eyes (thanks dad) and I find the winged look helps to give the appearance that they are bigger than they are.

When I saw cream eyeliner on offer from Sheercover I knew I had to try it. It comes with a small angled brush and initially I was a little worried that it might be difficult to apply. My fears very quickly dispersed as it was so easy to use. It just glides on and is so quick to apply. As I have got older the skin on my eyelids has become less taunt. This means that when I put on eyeliner I have to stretch the skin and sometimes I find it hard to get a continuous line, it goes slightly jumpy. Not with this liner, even without gently pulling the skin it is so easy to get a continuous line. The angled brush effortlessly glides over your eyelid and it is simple to get a thin line or build up to a thick line. Getting a cat’s eye flick is ridiculously easy as well and I find it much easier to do using this liner than I do a regular liquid liner. 

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Aspinal of London

Its coming up to my birthday so at the moment I am making a wish list of the things I want as presents. First up on the list is this gorgeous cosmetics case from Aspinal of London.

Friday, 15 April 2011

212 POP £36

Introducing the brand new limited edition fragrance for men and women; 212 POP by Carolina Herrera. Inspired by Pop Art, the fragrances feature fun and bright packaging with a fresh scent. This new limited edition fragrance is a fresh and exhilarating expression of 212’s notes, bursting with fluorescent-fresh fun and popping with masculine blue and girly pink.  It's a perfect recipe for summer fun.  The new 212 POP limited edition evokes elegance with a twist of urban extravagance.

212 POP for women features delicate top notes of bergamot and grapefruit that contrast with the base notes of sandalwood and musk. The men’s scent, 212 MEN POP begins with a top note of mint, giving way to sweet mandarin and then a woody base.

The vivid packaging and graffiti visuals are designed by the Australian artist Ben Frost. Well-known for his confrontational and often controversial Pop Art paintings, Bens work has appeared in countless galleries, magazines and newspapers worldwide.
This summer will be Popped up by Carolina Herrera. Live it and Enjoy it.

On Counter date April 2011

Stockist 0207 494 6220

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Japan Aid Soap £5

Buy one of Lush’s LIMITED EDITION Japan Aid soaps (£5.00) and all proceeds go to the relief effort in Japan

We were heartbroken to see the pictures of devastation from Japan and we know that we’re not the only ones.  For Lush it is very personal, as we have 145 shops in Japan and a factory – with 1,600 staff.  Some of these staff and their families have lost everything.

You can help by buying some of our limited edition 
Japan Aid soap (£5.00) and, just like our Charity Pot scheme, all the proceeds except the VAT will go directly towards the relief effort in Japan.

We are working with a charity called 
Peace Boat ( <, who is organising teams of volunteers, transporting aid goods and cooking hot meals in the disaster zone.  Despite their efforts, it is hard to keep up with the queues of people needing food and help.  All the money raised in the UK from the sales of this limited editionJapan Aid soap (£5.00) will go directly to Peace Boat, to help them help more people.  Your support can make such a difference.
Shaped like the Japanese flag, this limited edition soap will soften your skin and leave it scented with the popular tropical coconut fragrance of I Should Coco.

We have made enough to raise £50,000 in the UK and $80,000 in North America (money will go to another aid agency). Some of the money will also go to animal rescue organisations.

NOTE:Once the initial relief aid of food etc is no longer needed – we hope that some of the funds from the Japan Aid soap can start to be put towards the longer term rebuilding of the affected communities. Things like environmental projects, allotments for growing food, community gardens, community centres, animal rescue centres etc, will all be looking for funding to get back up and running.  These things are vital to quality of life, but are often the last things to gain funding – so Lush will be doing all it can to identify these kind of needs over the longer term.

Japan Aid soap is available in all Lush shops nationwide and online.  For shop details and mail order, please call 01202 668 545, or order on-line at <>  

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Tommyguns Shampoo & Conditioner £5.50 each

I love trying a brand that is new to me so when I heard about Tommyguns I just had to have a sample. I started off with their jasmine and wild nettle shampoo and conditioner for dry and damaged hair. My hair isn’t that badly damaged but since I started dying it I have found I need to treat it every so often. First up I love the packaging of Tommyguns, sleek and not fussy, they have obviously put all their effort into the contents and it shows. The shampoo froths up into a spring scented creamy lather and gently washed away the two days worth of dirt and grime my hair had collected. The conditioner isn’t partially thick but still coated my hair nicely. I left it on few a minutes as I do all the conditioner I use. When I rinsed it out my hair felt magical, soft and sleekly. After blow drying my hair had a lovely shine to it and didn’t feel weighed down at all. It definitely made my hair look conditioned and gave it a bounce, I will be trying out some more of Tommyguns products after this.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Soap & Glory Mighty Mouth £7

I don’t really wear lipstick, my lips are quite thin and I can never be bothered to go to the bathroom throughout the day or night to reapply. I am much more accustomed to wearing gloss or a nice lip balm. Something I can put on without a mirror and gives my lips a bit of a sheen. When Soap and Glory came up with Mighty Mouth I just had to give it a go. In the tube it looks like quite a bubble gum pink, once it’s applied though it has a subtle sheen which just brings out your natural skin tone. It has a nice smell of vanilla and tingles slightly on your lips giving them that bee stung look without the pain. It is thick and waxy meaning it stays put even if you have a glass of wine or two. As you don’t need to continuous apply it a tube will last you ages making it really great value. As it only emphasises your natural skin tone the colour won’t go out of fashion and you won’t get bored of it. Plus its super moisturising so will treat your lips with respect and make them soft and kissable. Another great product from Soap and Glory, now what to try next! 

Monday, 11 April 2011

Eylure Individual Lashes £5.30

I am sorry my dear readers, not only did I neglect you last week but I also feel like I have failed you. I have found a product that I simply cannot use. I wish I could give you advice of how to make the most of these Eyelure lashes but try as I might, I have not been able to get them to work. What I can do is tell you how they haven’t worked for me in the hope that you can avoid the same mistake. If any of you beautiful people have a method that’s works for you please let me know, you can even do a guest blog for me and I will shower you with praise.

What I did when I used these was first I dyed my lashes black with colour sport 30 day mascara as my lashes are quite fair. The next day I followed the instructions in the packet. Using tweezers I dipped the lashes into the glue and then carefully placed them next to one of my lashes. I held it there for a few minutes then carefully lifted the tweezers away. I managed to get three on before I blinked and they all fell off. I am not saying that there is necessarily anything wrong with these lashes, it might just be that they aren’t suited to me. After three attempts I haven’t been able to get them to stick properly to my lashes but that’s not to say that they might not work for someone else. So please if you have had a good experience get in touch.

Monday, 4 April 2011

McLaren Beginning – Tranquillity patchouli & rose candle

At the moment I am having a flourish of people around my who are either getting married or having babies.  I don’t know where this wave has come from; maybe it was from a particularly bitter winter. Whatever the reason it is lovely to see the people I care about happy and enjoying their lives. It also means that I get to pick lots of lovely congratulatory presents. I have found the perfect range for the mum to be, whether it’s a first child or the tenth, McLaren has the perfect gift.

My favourite has to be their range of candles and the tranquillity is top of my list. All girls love candles right? They are up there with cushions and long baths. I recently gave one to a friend of mine at her baby shower, she went on to use at the birth and she loved it. The smell is lovely and calming and it gave her something to focus on during eight hours of “pain and grunting” as she called it. Another one of my friends used it when her baby was brand new and breast feeding, she said at night it was a lovely thing to help her bond at night, just the two of them by candle light.

If you have friends that are going forth and multiplying I suggest taking a look at the McLaren website for gift ideas. The gifts are great as they are for both mother and baby and will help to seal that special bond right from the start. 

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Balance Wrinkle Freeze Serum £7.95

So far I have been blessed with a relatively smooth face; I have a few lines around my eyes and also in my forehead. They have only just started bothering me because I know that now they are not so bad it is the start of what is to come, and that quite frankly is scary. Getting older is a fact that no amount of my whinging is going to change. Men always seem to come off better in the aging stakes and my partner for one gets more handsome as each year passes. Women on the other hand have an impossible task of attempting to stay ageless their whole live. Cosmetic surgery has become almost fashionable and freezing your face into an expressionless mask seems to be what every older woman wants to do. What happens though if you don’t have the money to get injections of paralysis in your face or you do but you want to spend it on enjoying life? Balance has come up with a low price alternative that doesn’t require needles. It says it works with snake venom like peptide that literally freezes wrinkles. On application you can feel a sort of soft cooling effect, you are meant to use it twice everyday on cleansed and toned skin. It didn’t have the same effects like Botox would but it does help to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. If you are looking in the mirror and feeling a bit worried about the signs of aging I would definitely recommend that you buy Balance first before you even think about Botox.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Acquizhen – Gentle Exfoliating Mask £40

One key role in creating a glowing complexion is making sure you exfoliate regularly. It rids the skin of old cells that dull skin and make you look slightly grey. This gentle exfoliating mask is a tender way of getting your skin looking its best. All you need to do is lightly rub it onto your face making sure you avoid the delicate areas around your eyes, sit back and relax for ten minutes. I find it best to do this in a hot bath with plenty of bubbles and candles. Don’t think about everyday worries and try and clear your mind. Focus on your breathing, breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth. Your chest should raise when you breathe in and gentle fall back down when you breathe out. It won’t make the product work any better but we all need some respite from time to time! After ten minutes wash the mask off to reveal soft, supple skin and your body will feel lovely and relaxed.

Friday, 1 April 2011

Salon Confidential Clip and Go Hair Extensions 18 inch £45

Up until recently the only way to get long hair was to grow it. Great if you have several years and the ability to grow hair past your shoulders without it going scraggly and thin. Now though with the help of hair extensions long hair is yours at the snap of a clip! In a couple of weeks I will be talking about some fantastic human hair extensions from Undercover Glamour but first in the interest of fairness I thought I would take a look at some that use artificial hair.

They are incredibly easy to use, in ten minutes you can transform yourself into a Hollywood starlet. I went for the volume wave but you can also get straight and bouncy curls and they are available in twelve different colours. As they are artificial hair you can’t dye them or use heat on them so you can’t straighten them or curl them like you could human hair.

I found them really great to give me a main that was worthy of a hair advert swish. They blended really well with my own hair and they are really shiny and lustrous. I felt almost like I was going out in disguise and had a few of my male friends baffled as to how I had grown my hair so quickly. By the end of the night I did find them quite heavy on my head but then again I had been swishing my hair around like I was Cheryl Cole all night!

Buy Salon Confidential Clip & Go Hair Extensions from River Island and Dorothy Perkins, as well as online at