Friday, 28 February 2014

Spring Statement Necklaces

So this post was basically an excuse to take pretty pictures, but I am seriously loving statement necklaces recently! A simple outfit can look put-together and pretty just by adding a necklace with a pop of colour. I particularly like wearing them over a cable-knit jumper with leggings, but they can look equally great with a pretty sun dress or evening outfit. I find statement necklaces to be so versatile and super useful for making old outfits a new lease of life without buying a whole new wardrobe! Pictured are:

Turquoise Diamate Necklace \\ Zara
Rose Triangle Collar Necklace \\ Accessorize
Enamel Sahara Collar Necklace \\ Accessorize
Primrose Stone and Sparkle Necklace \\ Accessorize
Rose Gold Spike Neckalce \\ Unknown
Silver Bars Necklace \\ River Island (old)

Leave me links to your current favourite pieces of jewellery!

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Bonjour French Food Subscription Box

Bonjour French Food are a relatively new subscription box service who deliver a box of French food treats* to your door each month. You can choose to have them sent every month, or just as a one off.  I personally LOVE my food, so a box of new gourmet french foods to try made me pretty excited! I think one of these boxes would be a wonderful surprise gift for a student who is away at university and needs a little luxury in their diet, or as a housewarming present for a couple who have just moved in to a new home. Each box contains a range of sweet and savory foods, mostly in full-size products, which I expected for £31. Having a subscription works out slightly cheaper though, and could be a great way of finding new foods to incorporate in your diet. Here's what I unwrapped in the February box:

Three savory products and two sweet was a nice mixture and the quality of the products was wonderful. Having a range of products from snacks, to spreads, to a soup was great too. The two products that I most enjoyed were the Venison Pate (incredible on toast) and the Chocolate Spread (a luxurious hazelnut spread with wafer pieces that beats Nutella any day of the week). I've loved having different things to try in my cupboards and add some more decadent tastes to my meals.
The box comes with a little leaflet with a lovely letter of welcome and details about each product - a really nice touch. The customer service seems great, with quick replies to emails, and a very cheerful delivery man (a very rare breed!) I've heard other people rave about the great customer service, and I hope Bonjour French Food can maintain the personal feel as the brand grows. I also really like that if you take a particular liking to a food, you can find out where to order it from on the Bonjour French Food Website each month. Overall I loved the whole experience of this subscription box, and whilst it's not something I can afford on my student budget, it would be great for the food-loving couple or to receive as a gift.

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Monday, 24 February 2014

My February Exclusive Advertiser

You may have seen that my exclusive February advertiser is Stacey from Expat Make-up Addict. I discovered Stacey's blog wayyyy back when she asked me to create her blog design. Since then it's been a blog I check on almost daily, so I am so happy to be helping her advertise this month. Stacey's blog mostly features higher end beauty products, and I am constantly lusting after so many of the gorgeous products she picks up! There's a wide range of posts and I particularly love her 'Lip Six' posts which show her last six worn lip colours from her extensive collection! Here's Stacey:

Hello I’m Stacey, a British girl who has lived in Dubai for the past 9 years. I started blogging in November 2013 last year so I could share my beauty addiction with you! Pretty much obsessed with the colour pink, my cats and lipstick! Constantly searching for the perfect foundation and mascara. Extremely easily led.  Also the Queen of inventing ways to hide/disguise my new purchase from my other half! Over the past year I have LOVED meeting other bloggers and spend a lot of my spare time catching up on blog posts, checking out pics on instagram and chatting on twitter.

Come and say hi!

Love Stace xxx

Friday, 21 February 2014

An Introduction to Elizabeth's Daughter \\ Starter Set

Elizabeth's Daughter is a skincare company founded by one Mother, concerned that there were few products suitable for her daughter's young skin; finding only harmful and astringent products available. The resulting range is a collection of simple skincare products which I think are perfect for the newbie to skincare. They all contain carefully selected ingredients, which keep them simple, yet effective. I've been trailing samples of The Facial Gel Cleanser *, The Purifying Mask * and The Daily Moisturiser *. I love the simplicity of the product names - it is obvious what these products are and what they should be used for. The Daily Moisturiser is hydrating without being clogging to the pores, and has a lovely scent as well as providing SPF15 protection. The Gel Cleanser was not too stripping, but I did find the consistency to be a little too runny. It seems that Elizabeth's Daughter have now changed this product in favour of a facial cream cleanser, which is a great idea, as cream cleansers tend to be more nourishing for young skins. The Purifying Mask was my favourite product of the three - an Amazonian White Clay based mask to draw out impurities. It's one where you can literally see the dirt being pulled out the skin, so you know it's doing it's job. Skins that have been punished with stripping drugstore products would really benefit from using these simple and nourishing options. It looks like Elizabeth's Daughter have got some lovely products in their range. I'm really looking forward to trying more from this brand.

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Aurelia Cell Repair Night Oil

One of my favourite things about blogging is getting the chance to try brands that are much less known, and find some real hidden gems! Aurelia is a one of those brands, specializing in skincare with the next generation probiotic technology. They never test on animals and are a British company who manufacture here in England too - both things that make me much more inclined to like a brand. I've been testing a little sample of their Cell Repair Night Oil *, an overnight treatment for all skin-types, including sensitive skin like mine. Over the last six months or so, I've been using more oils on my skin, since realising that combination, oily and sensitive skins don't benefit from using all the stripping products that mainstream beauty companies claim are good for your skin. Whatever your skin-type, you can use oils! Aurelia's Cell Repair Night Oil is a mixture of oils, chosen for their different properties of firming, hydrating and toning, and well as helping to prevent the effects of ageing. I found that using just a few drops a few minutes before moisurising left my skin more supple, hydrated, more healthy and radiant, and with slightly reduced redness. It sinks into the skin immediately, and does its magical work overnight. The full size of this product does cost £45 (for 50ml), but for that you are getting a high quality blend of skin-loving oils that will last you for months and months.

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Pebble Grey Mirror Review + GIVEAWAY!

I think I've found the perfect handbag mirror! This cute little compact houses two mirrors, one with six inbuilt LED lights to illuminate your face for more visible make-up application. It fits in a small handbag or even a clutch and is so helpful for touch-ups in darkened restaurants or bathrooms. I love how small and compact it is, but it still manages to be incredibly bright! It comes housed in a luxurious velvet pouch, within a cute box. Pebble Grey are just lovely and have sent me a second mirror which I'm going to give away to one of you lovely readers - just enter through the Rafflecopter form below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Friday, 14 February 2014

Valentine's Day Picks

Happy Valentine's Day! Whether you're celebrating with someone special or having a night out with your friends, here's my picks for tonight:

River Island Blazer \\ I think a floral blazer looks great with a floaty top over leggings or jeans, with a pair of pretty heels, and natural tousled hair to keep the outfit feminine and not too work-like. This is one of my favourite items at the moment and I really need to wear it more.

Pizza Express \\ We had 40% off our entire bill for our early Valentine's meal on Monday - the discount applies to those with an NUS card on Mondays and Tuesdays. The rest of the week you still get 20% off.

Chanel Chance Eau de Parfum \\ A classic romantic perfume, featuring sensual scents of white musk, jasmine and amber. You can't help but feel sophisticated when spritzing this on.

NARS Orgasm Blush Mini * \\ A long-lasting peachy-pink blush with a slight shimmer; this one is in a teeny mini size which makes it perfect for travelling and touch-ups.

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine in 9 Nude In Private \\ The perfect 'your lips but better' shade in the most luxurious romantic bullet. Glossy, hydrating and very natural looking.

Essie Polish in Super Bossa Nova * \\ A darkened fushia polish that's opaque in one coat.

MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle \\ My favourite highlighter of all time for a glowing complexion.

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Early Valentine's Meal

Since we happen to be away for the weekend, we thought we'd do Valentines day early this year, and had a meal in the wonderful city in which we currently study and live. We took our new camera (Cannon 600D) and are still enjoying the novelty of it. The boyfriend took the second picture down, the 'artistic' blurry one, and was very proud of himself! A pizza express near the canal was our restaurant of choice, and, sneaky little tip - if you have an NUS card, you can get 40% off everything on Mondays and Tuesdays. Definitely one of the best discounts I've come across. We wandered back past the new library, which is pretty fancy in the nighttime, and I was treated to my favourite chocolates and some flowers, even though we said we wouldn't get each other anything :)

I've hardly ever done a 'lifestyle' type post before, so let me know if you'd like to see more like this! Are you doing something for Valentines Day?

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Monday, 10 February 2014

Crown Infinity Brushes

C459 Chisel Fluff * \\ £4.49

I've recently been trying some brushes from Crown's Infinity Range, an affordable but high-quality selection of brushes which allow you pick the ones you want to add to your collection. The range has been designed to apply products without absorbtion into the bristles, which is great because it means you don't loose any product. All the brushes are made with vegan soft synthetic bristles and have gorgeous black matte handles. And just how pretty do they look? These brushes feel really luxurious for the price, and I'm so impressed with the density of the bristles. The C450 is a Pointed Foundation Brush which applies foundation easily and quickly, but I actually like using this to apply a contour shade into the hollows of the cheeks. The C456 is named the 'Pointed Blender' and is a multi-task brush that I've found great for blending shadows into the crease, and concealing under the eyes. The C459, the 'Chisel Fluff' is a flatter small brush, useful for packing shadows onto the lid. I think this range has pretty much every brush you could want in your collection and the quality and design of these brushes is stunning for the price-point. 

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Friday, 7 February 2014

January Favourites

This past week I am ashamed to say I have not posted once. I've been super busy organising and overseeing a week of evening events for our Christian Union Mission Week at Uni, and it's not left much time for anything else! I hope to be back to [somewhat] regular posting soon, but for now, here's my belated January Favourites.

Lou Candeloun Candle *: My current favourite candle to burn in the evenings, this is a lilac and citrus scented jar of relaxation. 

NARS Kalahari duo *: My most recent post featured this bronzey eyeshadow duo, perfect for a winter glowing smokey eye. [read more here]

Soap and Glory Trick and Treatment Concealer *: A yellow-pigmented under-eye concealer to neutralise those pesky dark circles, this stuff lasts all day without creasing and brightens up your face for a teeny tiny price! [read more here]

Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic *: My first delve into Liz Earle last month led to the discovery of this most gorgeous toner. My skin is so much happier since including this adding this nourishing step to my skincare routine. [read more here]

ARK Anti-aging Skin Protector *: A luxurious primer which keeps my makeup looking fresh for 12 hours, and doesn't break me out. [read more here]

Clinique Super Primer (redness version): Yes, I like primers. I've featured this one in a favourites post before, and since repurchased it. I've been layering this on top of the ARK primer to mattify and reduce redness.

Divergent Trilogy: I've been reading this series since receiving it for Christmas. I've loved snuggling up with a hot water bottle for a good read. After devouring The Hunger Games, Divergent was the next logical step in the dystopian world book obsession! 

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict

Saturday, 1 February 2014

NARS Kalahari Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Eyeshadow Duo in Kalahari *

After a huge mix up from NARS when I was trying to order the new Narsissist Eyeshadow palette, they kindly sent me this beautiful eyeshadow duo to make up for it. I'm still gutted that I haven't got my Narsissist palette yet though - if you've done a review please link it up in the comments! Kalahari is a duo consisting of a gorgeous bronze and a browny taupe, which look similar in the pan, but much more distinct on the eyes. For a neutral lover like me, this is a dream pairing. The shadows are buttery and pigmented, and stay on without creasing for a full day with a primer. Both shades are metallic and give that bronzey glowing look I love. These colours really make blue eyes look brighter too. I wish the photos showed just how gorgeous these colours are, but I just couldn't seem to pick them up properly on camera. The shades in this could have been made for me! NARS duos are so compact that they're perfect to take on an overnight stay, another bonus for this little product. I can't really find anything wrong with this gorgeous little duo and it will be a staple in my makeup bag.

My exclusive advertiser for February is Stacey - take a look at her wonderful blog here - Expat Make Up Addict