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Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Primark Jewellery Haul



I popped into Prirmark to pick up another suitcase for when we go on holiday in September (I thought it best to grab one sooner rather than waiting til the end of Summer when the shops possibly won't have them in stock any more), but of course I had to have a wander around. There weren't any clothes that took my fancy this time. I personally find the shop very hit or miss-sometimes I find loads of things I like and sometimes nothing. Hubby grabbed a couple of things but what I ended up coming home with was a few necklaces and a headband, most of which I bought with our hols in mind.


The first thing is this pretty floral headband, which was £3. I'm not really sure I'd wear this at home to be honest but I always feel like I can get away with these things more on holiday. I thought it would be pretty with a nice flowy maxi dress and at £3, if I don't get that much use out of it afterwards it doesn't matter too much.


These two necklaces were an absolute steal, being on sale for £1 each...I couldn't leave them! I thought the pastel shades of the one on the left would go nicely with a dress I already have. It's patterned and includes lilac and peach so this would tie in. Or it would also look nice with a plain top in either white or matching one of the shades in the necklace.


The 2nd £1 necklace reminds of something almost Egyptian looking and I actually looked at something similar in Dorothy Perkins recently that was around the £15 mark. I don't like spending an awful lot on costume jewellery because a lot of the time, all the high street branded stuff is of similar quality in my opinion. I didn't really want to spend £15 on it, but a similar one for £1 I had to have!


I also picked up a more brightly coloured necklace that is similar to the first of the £1 ones...only this one was £4 as it wasn't on sale. I thought the bright shades in this would be lovely with a white dress or top to add a splash of colour.



The final item I chose this floral necklace. It's sort of a smaller statement necklace and not too in your face while still being noticeable enough to add something to an outfit. I thought this would be a good one to bring on holiday because being gold, white and diamante, it would go with most outfits.



I will of course wear all the necklaces at home as well but I guess going and buying the suitcase put me in the holiday mood!

What do you think? Have you picked up anything from Primark lately?

Em x


Sunday, 10 July 2016

Kiko Haul


On a recent trip to Oxford, I spotted a Kiko store. I wasn't actually planning on doing any shopping but let me tell you I virtually ran when I saw it haha. I love Kiko but don't have one anywhere near home. You can of course buy online but sometimes it's nice to be able to try things out, you know?


I came away with 6 items and I believe the total was around £23, which to me is great value. Some of the things I picked up were actually on sale.

Left to right: Kiko Colour Sphere Shadow 11;  Kiko Colour Sphere Shadow 36, Kiko Water Eye Shadow 229
I bought 3 eye shadows, two of which are the Colour Sphere shadows which I hadn't tried before. 11 is a shimmery lilac shade that I have to say does work better over some sort of primer/ base, but the shade is super pretty and it was also super cheap (under the £3 mark) so I couldn't resist. Shade 36 is a deep shimmery teal that I thought would make a lovely smokey eye as an alternative to the standard greys or browns. Find the Colour Sphere shadows here.

Left to right: Kiko Colour Sphere Shadow 11;  Kiko Colour Sphere Shadow 36, Kiko Water Eye Shadow 229
The third shadow is one of the Water eye shadows, called that because they are designed so that you can use them wet or dry. I love the formula of these and already own shade 200 champagne, which sadly, seems to have been discontinued despite its popularity as it was nowhere to be seen in the store (I never understand why brands discontinue something that is so popular). The water shadows have a lovely smooth, pigmented texture and are super shimmery, with this grey/ silver shade being no exception. Worn wet, they look more metallic. Find the water eye shadows here.


I then picked up 3 lip products. The first is the 'Creamy Lipgloss' which is one of those chubby balm/gloss pencils that have become so popular. This one in shade 102 is really easy to wear, a sheer peachy pink shade with enough pigment to brighten the face. Find the creamy lipgloss online here.

Left to right: Kiko Creamy Lipgloss 102; Kiko Smart lipstick 927; Kiko Pencil Lip Gloss 106
I bought another of the Smart lipsticks (I already own two) in the shade 927, which is a slightly mauve, cool toned pink. This lipstick formula is also very easy to wear. It is nice and moisturising which is something I like in an everyday lip product. Find the Smart Lipsticks here.

Left to right: Kiko Creamy Lipgloss 102; Kiko Smart lipstick 927; Kiko Pencil Lip Gloss 106
Finally, I picked up the Pencil Lip Gloss in shade 06. It was the colour of this that drew me to it. As you can see it is a warmer pink shade with some sparkle. I'm not normally into sparkle in lip products but actually once you have this on, it just makes your lips look fuller rather than being obviously glittery. This has a nice comfortable and non sticky formula but is thicker feeling than the Creamy Lipgloss pencil. It therefore lasts longer on the lips. Find the Pencil Lip Glosses here.

Have you tried any of these products? Do you have any favourites from Kiko?

Em x

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Places to Visit: Blenheim Palace


I'm going to start this post by saying that the blog has been a bit quieter during the last month or so. Things have been a bit crazy at work and if I'm honest, I just haven't had the inclination to sit writing blog posts when I get home. I made the decision to not put any pressure on myself to put things up, after all this blog is a hobby and should be enjoyable rather than something that is a chore.

Anyway...myself and hubby recently went on a little trip to Oxfordshire and really enjoyed it. It was such a welcome little break. I felt like sharing our trip to Blenheim Palace (which is in a part of Oxfordshire called Woodstock) so here we go! I may do another post soon as we also visited Oxford and I did a bit of beauty shopping at Kiko-super exciting because I don't have one anywhere near home!

Blenheim Palace
Blenheim Palace is set in absolutely stunning grounds. Hubby is really interested in history (I do find parts of it interesting but he's more of a history buff than I am!) and there is certainly plenty of history to it. 

It is the family home of the 12th Duke of Marlborough and has been passed from Duke to Duke over the centuries. It was built in the early 18th century to celebrate victory over the French in the War of the Spanish Succession. It was given as a gift to the first Duke of Marlborough (otherwise known as John Churchill). He was a military commander who led the Allied forces in the 1704 Battle of Blenheim (hence the name!).
Blenheim Palace
Not to mention it is also the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, who was born in 1874. He also proposed to his wife, Clementine Hozier, in the grounds and are lots of historical artifacts, tributes and plenty of information about him around the palace and grounds.

Inside Blenheim Palace: the room where Churchill was born
Churchill bust inside the grounds of Blenheim
Some of the rooms inside are pretty spectacular, with extravagant chandeliers, ornate ceilings, some amazing furniture and many paintings.

One of the Palace State Rooms
Amazing ceiling at Blenheim Palace
Amazing ceiling at Blenheim Palace
The fanciest cot I've ever seen!
I was pretty amazed by the palace's fantastic looking organ, which I would love to have a go of!

Organ inside Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace gardens
Blenheim Palace Gardens
There is a large lake that you can walk by, it was so peaceful.The grounds are huge and you could honestly spend hours just walking around them. In fact, there are routes mapped out on the map we got on arrival for those who fancy a longer walk.

Blenheim Palace gardens: The Lake
Blenheim Palace gardens: The Rose Garden
Blenheim Palace gardens: Flower in the Rose Garden


We spent around 5 hours walking around both the palace and grounds before we had to catch our coach but honestly we could have spent longer exploring the rest of the grounds if we'd had the time and energy! Amazing how tiring walking around places like this is haha, worth it though!



Have you ever visited Blenheim Palace or anywhere similar? What do you think?

Em x


Saturday, 18 June 2016

Review and Swatches: Rimmel Moisture Renew Sheer and Shine Lipsticks


600 'Spin It Spring' 200 'Glow-rious Pink'
I bought two of Rimmel's new Moisture Renew Sheer and Shine lipsticks a few weeks back and must say that I've really been enjoying them. Let's start with the pink packaging...what can I say? I love pink!


The shades I picked up are 600 'Spin It Spring' (a lovely peachy/ coral shade) and 200 'Glow-rious Pink'. The makeup addict in me always feels the need to pick up a warm toned shade and a cool toned shade when I feel like I'm going to really like a particular lip product.

600 'Spin It Spring' (a lovely peachy/ coral shade) 200 'Glow-rious Pink'
The lipsticks are really quite sheer with just one layer, as their name would suggest, but you can build the colour up with a few swipes and they're not so sheer that you don't get any colour from them, as you can see below.

600 'Spin It Spring' and 200 'Glow-rious Pink'
As the name would also suggest, they are really nice and moisturising. They have a nice amount of slip to them and my lips feel nourished and never dry after reapplying them several times during the day.

200 'Glow-rious Pink'
Speaking of reapplying, they're not the most long lasting lipsticks but I think this is to be expected from this kind of formula. Personally I really enjoy sheer, moisturising lipstick formulas for the Summer and I don't mind reapplying. It's sort of like wearing a gloss really but with more pigment than a lot of glosses have, and not as sticky! I also feel like as a result they make my lips look much plumper than they are, they sort of have a 'juicy' look to them if that is a way to describe lips?! haha.

600 'Spin It Spring'


You can find the Rimmel Moisture Renew Sheer and Shine lipsticks for £6.49 via Boots here or via Superdrug here.

Have you tried these lipsticks? Do you prefer sheer, glossy lipsticks for Summer or are you more of a follower of the matte lip trend?

Em x

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Review:Zoeva Rose Golden Volume 2 Complete Eye Set


It was recently my birthday and I treated myself to the Zoeva Rose Golden Volume 2 Complete Eye Brush Set as a kind of birthday present to myself. I already had a few of the individual rose golden brushes (read the review post here) but I'd had my eye on more of the range for a while. I came to the conclusion that it made more sense to buy the set rather than more individual brushes because it works out better value.


The set comes with 12 brushes and costs £65, which means that each brush works out to be under £6. That's pretty bargainous for great quality brushes if you ask me! Not to mention the case/ makeup bag that comes with it that is really nice quality as well.


The 12 brushes are everything you could need as far as eye makeup goes. There are flat brushes for packing on eye shadow, crease brushes of various sizes, a pencil brush, angled/ eyebrow brush, a tiny smudger brush, the list goes on. All of them are nice and soft, wash well and do not shed. The other brushes I previously bought from Zoeva have been washed quite a few times and still look as good as new.


I also think that these brushes are unbelievably pretty with their nude handles and rose gold ferrules. I know that brushes are for serving a practicle purpose, but it always helps when something is super pretty too, right?! These sit in a little brush holder where I do my makeup and there's just something so satisfying about seeing a matching set of pretty rose gold brushes. 


I really think this brush set is worth the money if you're into nice makeup brushes. It would also make a lovely gift.

Have you tried Zoeva makeup brushes? What do you think?

Em x

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Beauty Empties and Reviews #19

I had a huge bag of beauty bits I've used up again so here are my thoughts...

Bath and Body


1. Soap and Glory Foam call is a 2 in 1 shower and bath body wash. I normally love Soap and Glory but I wasn't fussed on this one. It was ok enough to use up but I prefer their other scents (Sugar Crush is my fave) and Foam Call also didn't seem to foam up as well as others. This came to me as part of a gift and I won't be buying it.

2. Kind Natured Coconut and Passionflower Bath Soak was something I picked up in Boots when I needed a bubble bath and this happened to be on offer. I was intrigued to see what a 97% natural bubble bath would be like. It smells nice and foamed up well. I would probably buy it on offer again but it wasn't special enough for me to go out of my way to pick it up.

3. Garnier Ultimate Blends Soothing Hydrating Lotion in Delicate Oat made it into my April Beauty Favourites post because I really enjoyed it. It smells lovely without being overpowering and is super moisturising. I'm using other things at the moment but I can definitely see myself repurchasing this one.

4. Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Sugar Scrub is one of my favourite body products of all time. It smells absolutely amazing, as does the rest of the Sugar Crush line, with a very zingy lime scent that is great for waking you up in the morning. It's also a very scrubby scrub that exfoliates really well. I am currently using a mini one that came in a gift set but I have already bought a new full size.


 5. 2 x Nivea Invisible Anti-Persperants. I always prefer roll on deodorants and always pick up the invisible ones too because there is nothing more annoying than your deodorant marking or even permanently discolouring your clothes.
Hair


1. Tresemme Deep Cleansing Shampoo is brilliant for removing buildup of products or for oily hair. I am currently using the L'oreal Elvive Extraordinary Clay range which is brilliant (see my review here) but I like to alternate between shampoos as my hair does seem to sort of get used to them after a while. I'm sure I will repurchase this at some point as it's something I have bought on and off for years.

2. Tresemme Salon Silk Conditioner was nice to go with the shampoo. It was quite moisturising but didn't weigh my hair down and again I would repurchase in the future.

3. Herbal Essences Fresh Balance Shampoo is another one I keep going back to that is pretty good for my oily roots, again probably a repurchase at some point but not right now.

4. Percy and Reed Finishing Polish is great for adding light hold to the hair. As I have wavy hair that I like to make more curly, this is great for scrunching in,to define the curls and give them a bit of hold. I have already repurchased.

Skincare


1. Neutrogena Visibly Clear Pink Grapefruit Cream Wash is my favourite morning face wash. It cleanses my skin without drying it out and contains salicylic acid which is good for oily/ spot prone skin. I have repurchased this many times.

2. First Aid Beauty (FAB) Radiance Pads are exfoliating pads that contain glycolic and lactic acids. They do a good job but are much more expensive than the Nip&Fab equivalent that I normally use. I saw the FAB ones with some other FAB products for a bargainous price so though I'd give them a go to compare and for me, they do basically the same thing. I am going to go back to the Nip&Fab ones because they are very similar but much cheaper. You can see my full review of the FAB ones here.

3. La Roche Posay Serozinc is spray toner than contains zinc, which is great for helping to keep oily/ spot prone skin clear. I really enjoy this and have already repurchased.

4. Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm is an absolute must have for me, literally the best lip balm I've ever used (and I've used a lot).

5. Garnier Simply Essentials 2 in 1 Makeup Remover is a brilliant oil based eye makeup remover that is budget friendly too. I've lost count of the number of times I've repurchased have done so again.

6. Garnier Micellar Water is great for getting off the bulk of your face makeup before going in with a proper cleanser. Again I have repurchased numerous times and have done again.

7. Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion is an exfoliating toner, similar to the FAB or Nip and Fab pads but in a bottle. I have to say that I didn't love this as much as I was expecting to. When they say mild, they mean it. I would say that it would be good for someone who was just starting out using an exfoliating toner but for skin that's used to them like mine, it was almost a bit too mild. I prefer other things so I won't be repurchasing.

8. Superdrug Naturally Radiant Brightening Hot Cloth Cleanser is a brillant cleanser than I like using after the Garnier Micellar Water and is a definite repurchase. It really gets my skin clean without drying it out and is pretty similar to the much more expensive Liz Earle Cleanse and polish. You can see my full review and comparison here.

Makeup


I won't go into these ones too much because I've mentioned them numerous times before and I'd be repeating myself, but needless to say they are all brilliant and have all been repurchased at least a few times or even for years.

1. Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer
2. Revlon Colorstay Foundation (Normal-Oily)
3. Max Factor Facefinity All Day primer
4. Rimmel Stay Matte Powder
5. Sleek Brow Stylist in 'Light'
6. Sleek Brow Perfector in 'Light'
7. Stila Smudge Stick eye liner in 'Damsel'
8. Benefit They're Real Mascara
9. Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer

Which beauty products have you used up lately?

Em x

Sunday, 29 May 2016

May Beauty Favourites



It's the end of another month so it's time to tell you about my favourite beauty products in May...

Hylamide Pore Delete is a pore blurring, mattifying product. It's a liquid that you pat on on top of your foundation and before powder. It's a bit strange to get used to and it took me a couple of tries to get it working well without removing any of my foundation (read more about getting the hang of it in my review here). Now I have the hang of it, though, it really does reduce the look of larger pores and mattify. Find it here for £18 with free delivery.

L'oreal Sexy Balm  in 'As If I' very quickly became a favourite. It's a tinted, balmly lip colour in a twist up chubby pencil type format. These are lovely and moisturising and convenient to apply on the go as the shades I chose can be slapped on without a mirror. See my review here and find them here for £4.99 (buy one get one half price).

Too Faced Love Flush Blush in 'Love Hangover' is something I'vee had for a few months but I have used it a lot this month. The warm pink-coral shade just says Spring/Summer to me. It is well pigmented but not so much that it makes it difficult to use and the packaging is beautiful as well. You can read my review here and find it here for £22.50 (currently 10% off).

Maybelline Super Stay nail polish in 'Red Hot Getaway' and 'Pink Volt' have been my go to nail colours this month. I currently have Pink Volt on both my fingers and toes. I just love bright pink and coral nail polishes in Spring and Summer and the formula of the superstay nail polishes is brilliant. They are long lasting and apply nicely. With some of them I can get away with 1 coat. Find them for £4.49 each via Superdrug here.

Orly Glosser top coat was something I saw recommended by Zoe from Mammafulzo and I must say I'm enjoying it. I've tried a few top coats lately and none of them have been quite right for one reason or another. This one does help my nail polish last longer than it would with other top coats and has a nice shiny finish. Find it here for £11.20.

What were your favourite beauty products this month?

Em x

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Review and Swatches: Makeup Revolution Smokey Palette



I came across Makeup Revolution's Smokey palette in Superdrug a couple of weeks ago and it's an obvious dupe of the Urban Decay Smoky palette (yes it's spelled differently, without the e). I think that Makeup Revolution make some great products for the price point but I do sometimes wonder how they get away with producing so many products that are so obviously designed to dupe things from more expensive brands. The Urban Decay version was something I liked the look of when it came out but I didn't think I'd get enough use out of the grey shades to justify the price tag (I tend to wear warmer tones during the day and only really go for a grey smokey eye for evening wear). As much as I love the quality of UD eye shadows, the smoky palette is pricey at £38.50, by comparison to the Revolution one, which cost me £6.


The packaging of the palette is sleek and black with gold writing. It feels like decent quality considering it cost £6 and I love the large mirror inside. I do wish, however, that there was some differentiation between their palettes on the front. The only way to tell which is which is by looking at the name on thee sticker on the back. If you have a few palettes from them like I do, it's slightly irritating. 


Anyway...it's what's inside that counts! Inside are 12 eye shadows that are great quality, really smooth and pigmented. They're obviously not quite as good quality as the UD palette will be but they are just brilliant for £6. Even the mattes are nice and smooth and easy to work with, which is not always the case, especially with cheaper eye shadows. 


Also included is a double ended brush with a flat side for packing shadow onto the lid and a more round side that could be used for blending or putting colour into the crease. It's not the best quality brush and I would always use my own, but if you don't have brushes already, it is far better than those little sponge applicators that companies usually include in more budget friendly palettes.



Overall, I really do think this is a brilliant palette for a bargainous price. If like me, they are colours that you would only use every now and then, or you just don't want to spend a fortune on an eye shadow palette, I'd really recommend it.

Have you tried this palette or the Urban Decay version? What do you think?

Em x