Wednesday 30 January 2013

Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick - Heart Breaker - Review


I've had this lippie from the Rimmel Lasting Finish range since Autumn (I think) of last year - picked it up from Tesco during one of my many supermarket jaunts - it was on offer at the time (can't even remember the offer). Seems to only be available in this colour at Tesco and has changed to Heart Breaker Red - 4 now as you can see here instead of Heart Breaker 016 but appears to be the same shade - no idea what's going on there - that'll teach me to get my finger out review-wise in future though...

Sun is in my face and my hair is it's usual mess!

So - 'attempting not to waffle too much - yeah right!' - this lipstick is meant to be long-wearing (up to 8 hours) and high-shine.  I'm no lippie connoisseur - as you may well know  - but I love the colour, a rich raspberry-like shade and find it to be more creamy than shiny but that's fine - I like creamy!  As far as long wear is concerned it lasted about an hour and a half before fading away evenly (I've worn it with and without a quick slick of lip balm and also blotted between applications).  Unfortunately it didn't survive my morning cuppa and toasted t-cake at work, (can't do without that!) and had to be re-applied throughout the day - but then I'd expect this anyway? Which lippie really does stay totally intact (without a sealant?) after a toasted t-cake (please let me know?!) - a matte probably?

Anyway - hope you can get an idea of the shade on my usual half-face (ah the day of the full face is looming in the distant future - need to work out how to stop the lens on my camera amplifying everything in the centre of the pic  - yep it's that old conk again) - the sun was (obviously) shining at the time so the colour hasn't come out as deep as it is in 'real life'!

Have you tried any Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipsticks? Which is your favourite shade?

Jen x

Saturday 26 January 2013

Bourjois Intuitive Liner - Review


I bought the Bourjois Intuitive Liner from Boots back in October half-term last year. I liked the idea of the Clarins 3-Dot Liner but couldn't justify the price - this felt a lot easier on the old purse at £6.99.

As you can see it has a three-pronged tip which can be used to enhance the lash-line or as a standard felt liner to draw the usual straight line.  It took a while to get the hang of using the prongs and at first and I found it all a bit fiddly. You have to make sure you position them in exactly the right place and basically just push them in to create 'dots' amongst the base of the lashes - as with most things though practice makes perfect and now it doesn't take long at all.  I've also used it now and again as a standard felt liner to line my top lid over the top of eyeshadow - it's quite and intense black so works fine this way.  I found that once it's on - it stays in place all day or night until it's removed.

Bare lashes

With Bourjois Intuitive used to thicken lash line and mascara
I guess you can be as light or heavy handed as you wish - depending on how much definition to you want to add. Not sure how it would work with really fair lashes as it's only available in Noir/Black but for myself I'm quite pleased with the result - being an excessively skinny lashed girl - all in all I think this is a good product for the price and I can see a future re-purchase!

Have you tried out the Bourjois Intuitive Liner?

Jen x

Tuesday 22 January 2013

Paperblanks Journal - Emerald Slim - Mucha Collection

Evening all! 

I was recently asked - by the lovely people over at Paperblanks - the 'book people' -  if I would like to try out one of their small journals.  I love Art Nouveau and Art Deco themes and was sent this gorgeous journal from the Mucha Collection.  I've always admired Alphonse Mucha's work so was over the moon!

Here she is...Emerald Slim...

The colours and detail of Emerald are amazing and her cover has an embossed and luxurious feel to it ...

Plenty of quality lined paper for me to scribble on...together with a ribbon marker...
Lightweight and slim but also sturdy enough to carry around in my handbag ...with a 'Magnetic Wrap' to keep her closed firmly ...

Includes a 'Memento pouch' at the back ...

Decent size pouch there (if I may say so!) - so plenty of room for receipts etc ...after the spending ban is over of course...

I'll be using my Emerald Slim to jot down blog notes and ideas whilst on the go - no more scrappy bits of paper (which I end up losing!). These journals would make lovely presents or keepsakes - such is the quality and finish.

You can check out the full range of Paperblanks Writing Journals, Dayplanners and Address Books here - there are so many designs to choose from - something for everyone's taste ... 

Which one do you reckon you'd go for...?

Jen x

Sunday 20 January 2013

Glossybox - January


January's Glossybox arrived last week - waving the 'Detox' flag. This box is supposed to be all about rejuvenating, replenishing, regenerating and refreshing - don't know about you lot but I could do with some of that right now ...

Quick look at the products...

Lacoste - Eau de Lacoste sample - from £33/30ml - it's meant to evoke the feeling of wearing pure cotton on skin - cotton's not the first thing that springs to mind but I like the fragrance - fresh and clean.

Sanctuary Spa Active Reverse Thermal Transformation Mask 2 sample sachets (serum and mask) Full Size £27.50/Step 1- 50ml Step 2 75ml - this apparently has instant results and after four weeks of use 'visibly firms and refines to reveal smoother, glowing, more even skin'.  I said I wanted to try to use more face masks so will give this a go. Probably two/three uses out of this sample - not sure? (Darcey Bussell is said to like this one - so if it's good enough for Darcey ...)

Mono Micro Exfoliant - 30ml/Full Size £14.50/100ml - love the smell of this - 'delivers instant radiant skin, refining the skin's texture, reducing the appearance of pores and fine lines.' The product contains papaya enzymes which is supposed to help stimulate cell renewal - looking forward to using.
Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture for eyes - 3.5ml/Full Size £57/15ml  - provides 'immediate hydration that firms and awakens the delicate eye area' - sounds good. I'll use the sample but probably wouldn't spend so much on a full size. It would have to be an absolute miracle worker.

BM Beauty Dewy Perfection Finishing Powder - 1g sample/Full Size £8/4g - this can apparently be used under or over foundation, to diminish fine lines, create an airbrushed finish or as a highlighter. It has a bit of a sheen so can use this to 'help me look alive' in the morning.

Glossy dreams sleep mask (bonus product) - a nice idea but I don't use them personally - have given it to my little girl!

So that's it. Quite like the theme of this box - maybe would have been nice to have had one full size product  (is that just me?). All in all though a decent box. Looking forward to using the Mono Micro Exfoliant.

You can check out the Glossybox experience here.

What did you get in this month's Glossybox?

Jen x

Saturday 19 January 2013

Dhal with Tomatoes and Spinach Recipe...

Evening all...

My parents had very kindly given us some curry for Saturday night the other weekend (they do this a lot and it's greatly appreciated!). Anyway - I decided to cook up a big pot of dhal/lentils to have as a side dish.  I tend to cook it in larger batches because it freezes well and always comes in handy. My dad always has a whole army of dhals in their freezer for a rainy day...

The ingredients (apart from the lentils of course) are pretty flexible and can be omitted or modified according to personal taste. There are no hard and fast rules and apart from the lentils you can pretty much add in whatever you fancy, make it as spicy as you like and alter the consistency to suit - it's really a free for all! We have lentils quite a lot as a side dish with curry or with rice and roast meat or fish.

Very roughly the ingredients are...

So - for approx. 3-4 double portions (depending on how greedy you are) I use:-

8oz lentils (I use red) - no need to pre-soak but I usually give the lentils a few rinses
1-2 onions - sliced
4 -5 cloves garlic - chopped/sliced
small/medium piece of ginger chopped/sliced
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp nigella seeds (optional)
however many chillies you like - chopped (I use 1-2)
1 carton/tin chopped or plum tomatoes
fresh or frozen chopped or leaf spinach - as much or little as you like - (forgot to take spinach pic but I only used frozen leaf from Sainsburys)
good dash of vinegar or lemon juice
1-2 vege stock cube (optional - and I forget to photograph - rubbish aren't I?)
fresh coriander chopped
salt to taste
2-3 tbsp oil (again - not on photo)

There are a couple of ways of cooking. The easy way (which mum says my grandpa used to adopt) is to fry the onions, garlic, ginger, mustard and nigella seeds, chillies, turmeric and cumin. Throw in the lentils, tomatoes, spinach, vinegar, crumble in the stock cube and add enough water to cover a few cm over the lentils or according to instruction on the pack - I tend to add extra water as I prefer a thinner consistency. Bring it all to the boil, cover and simmer for 30ish minutes or leave simmering until you're ready for it. Add chopped fresh coriander towards the end.

The other way (which is what I did) is to make a soup first by cooking the lentils as above in the water with approx half onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric, cumin, tomatoes and vinegar, spinach, and crumbled stock cube, again adding coriander towards the end.  In a separate frying pan, fry the rest of the sliced onion (add extra if you like), chillies with mustard and nigella seeds to make a seasoning and tip it all into the lentils.  We usually fry this lot until onions are crispy and brown. Mix before serving.

You can also fry up some extra sliced garlic, add curry leaves, mushroom, courgette in the seasoning or you can add extra vege to your dhal when boiling - mum makes a pretty smooth pot and dad adds chunky pieces of carrot, celery, broccoli - whatever really!

What would you serve it up with?

Jen x

Wednesday 16 January 2013

Natures Healthbox - Green People Anti-Ageing Facial Oil - Review

Evening all!

I was recently sent a lovely product to review - from Nature's Healthbox - a new UK based website offering a vast array of natural and organic products including beauty and skincare,  supplements, food, household and baby and child products. You can check out the complete range here.  In their own words ...
"We offer a range of natural health, beauty and home products for men, women and children. Our mission is to bring you the very best in natural, organic and eco-friendly products and great service with a smile."
I received the Green People Anti-Ageing Facial Oil to review at the start of December...
"A pioneering brand established in 1997, Green People is the leader in certified organic body care products. With an extensive range of natural products – shampoos, face creams, sun lotions and body washes to name just a few – it is one of the biggest names in organic beauty in the UK."

Not sure if it's due to the cold weather, central heating or just plain impending old age but my cheeks have started feeling a little dry and tight at night in particular.  I've therefore been using one drop of this oil under my moisturiser every night and it seems to have done the trick. I concentrate mainly on the old cheeks but also apply a little onto my t-zone. Wasn't sure if it would make this area more oily or break me out (I have normal/combi skin) - but it hasn't and my skin actually seems to be behaving! I have heard that sometimes one of the ways to treat oily/de-hydrated skin is with more oil - in effect tricking the skin into thinking it doesn't need to overcompensate on oil production. In my case this oil has been really beneficial - I'm now using much less moisturiser to try to combat that dried out feeling.  I've also massaged a drop or two onto my neck and de-colletage (again under moisturiser at night) and periodically onto the backs of my extremely dry hands, under my hand cream last thing at night. It has a lovely natural soothing aroma so ideal for bedtime use - now all I need is to get some sleep!  The key benefits of this product are to nourish, enrich and balance - I think my skin would agree with all three!

The Green People Anti-Ageing Facial Oil is priced at £16.89/30ml - I'll definitely consider re-purchasing.  I've been using it for over a month and have only used a quarter of the bottle- the pump is easy to use - I have a thing a about dodgy pumps - this one seems to dispense the exact amount of oil - you can't beat a good pump!

You can check out the full range of tempting products from Green People over on Nature's Healthbox right here.  And...while we're about it...Nature's Healthbox are offering a 10% discount on all products across the website (valid until midnight 31st January 2013). All you need to do is quote the code  BLOGTASTIC2013  (and this discount is in addition to the existing January offers) -

25% off Salcura (amazing treatments for eczema, psoriasis, dry and irritable skin)
15% off A.Vogel (a vast range of remedies and tinctures extracted from plants)
20% off Amy's Kitchen (Seriously delicious soups with no nasties)

I won't break my spending ban but may have to get the hubby to order a couple of items for me and put them away for my birthday!  Will you be picking up any products from Nature's Healthbox - would love to know!

Jen x

Sunday 13 January 2013

Mini Sales Haul meets 'Fly London'!


Not had much time to blog this weekend - the hubby is ill with a chest infection so I'm holding the fort (as you do) and running around like a mad woman.  So ... just a quick post to share a few bits and bobs I obtained in the sales pre-spend ban.

Couple of fragrances half price (around £15 each) from Debenhams:-

Calvin Klein CKIN2U her Eau de Toilette - bit fresh/bit floral/bit citrus - will be ideal going into Spring.
Philosophy Summer Grace Eau de Toilette - as the name suggests smells of summer (not in this country!) - warm and floral - my little girl says it smells of summer flowers.

Couple of items from Boots:-

James Brown Protect and Nourish Kit - contains Colour Enhance Shampoo and Conditioner (each 75ml) and Intensive Moisture Mask (full size 150ml). I've not yet tried any products from the James Brown range -this was a complete bargain at half price of £5 -the mask is worth around £8 on it's own.

17 Fast Finish Nail Polish in Navy Glint - not a sale item although these are on offer at the moment down from £2.99 to £2.00.  I feel a NOTD coming on...just need the bloody time to paint the darn things!

And last but not least ....

I've been wanting Fly London's for ages (as my lovely blogging 'boot and bag obsessed' buddy Claire from Another New Day knows)!  I was after the high wedges but these 'Fly London Women's Mol' in black leather were reduced in the Amazon Boxing Day sales from £135 to £70 so my hubby bought them for me as he'd not really got me much for Christmas...still have my eye on those wedges but will have to save up! These are really comfortable although surprisingly snug around the calf (boots are usually too big for me in this region) so they must be quite a slim fitting but should give with wear. I've not even worn them yet - you know when you keep getting them out and looking at them ('said the mistress to the bishop!') and putting them away again because you don't want to get them dirty - ridiculous or what?

So - that's my lot - spending ban in full force now ...!  Did you bag any sales bargains recently?

Jen x

Friday 11 January 2013

The Smiths - Bigmouth Strikes Again!


This has been a long week - and a long day ... thank goodness (or something slightly stronger) it's Friday!

My hubby is a huge Smiths fan and was playing their 'Singles' album in the car earlier in the week ...I think this is one of my fact it may even be my favourite...?

The Smiths - Bigmouth Strikes Again

Released in 1986 from the album 'The Queen is Dead' - my hubby had all The Smiths' albums on vinyl - think he still has them knocking around somewhere...

"Now I know how Joan of Arc felt...!"

Everyone's familiar with Morrissey but it's the un-mistakable Johnny Marr's guitar rifts and strides in this track that I love - absolutely superb - it just bounds along and takes you with it!  Have a listen if you like your acoustic guitar!

How scary is it that 'Bigmouth' is over 25 years old? Still sounds as fresh as it did then!

Which is your favourite tune from The Smiths?

Jen x

Wednesday 9 January 2013

Beauty Resolutions 2013 ...

Evening all!

I've really enjoyed reading the posts on 'Beauty Resolutions' for the coming year - most recently by Sasha from Ramblings of a Beauty Bird and Jayne from Miss Jayne Becca.

Here's mine...

Sleep ...  You know you need more sleep when the first thing that enters your  mind as you drag your weary body out of bed early morning is 'I can't wait to go to bed tonight'.  I've always needed a lot of sleep but these days seem to just get by on 'nervous energy' (think it's a 'mum' thing).  I'm so guilty of cramming far too much into each evening and am often to be found in bed - laptop on knee - typing up a blog post late at night (in-fact this was my location as I typed this post - 11.30 at night/husband is snoring - too much info?). Also, our dog has the weakest bladder on the planet and cries to go out usually around 5ish - even though my hubby gets up to let him out I always wake and sometimes can't get back to sleep easily - which doesn't help the situation.  Must make more of an effort to go up earlier (minus the laptop), try to read (a book) and somehow get more shut-eye.

Feet ...   I'm so very guilty of 'ignoring' my feet at this time of year - well nobody really sees them and they're shoved away in socks and boots most of the time - no excuse I know!  I'll put a bit of cream on them (occasionally) before bed but am usually too tired or just forget! I can't remember the last time I used a foot scrub either (think it was in the summer) - shocking isn't it? So - more of an effort to scrub up and apply a foot cream is needed here - otherwise I'll be peeling layers of rough hard skin off my feet come springtime - nice!

Neck ...  and decolletage - now I'm getting older this is really an area which I can't afford to neglect. I've always just cleansed and shoved on whatever cream is to hand but think I now need to invest in something more potent.  I can't do much about my necklace lines - I've had them forever - but probably need some sort of firming throat gel to help prevent all that baggy skin from accumulating.  Ah the joys of age!

Face Masks ... another procedure I'm often guilty of skipping.  I have quite a few masks in my possession (as you can imagine!) but again am too tired most nights to faff about. This is the time of year when my kite could do with some extra brightening/pampering/hydration/moisture etc so another reason to get upstairs earlier and read in bed with that mask on - hubby won't even notice!

Make-Up Storage... basically all my daytime make-up is crammed into several large containers.  So irritating in the morning fumbling around by lamplight.  A major bit of organisation is needed so will have to invest in some storage and get sorted (and find the time of course!).

Improve Posture ... if you happened to read my Posture Perfect? post back in June (if you didn't and really want to you can do so here) you'll know that this is a weakness of mine.  Pilates has helped so much but I've not attended the class for a while - the teacher (who was brilliant at helping us to stretch things out, improve core stability, posture and shoulder alignment etc etc etc) left and the new teacher didn't have the same approach to the class - it turned into more of a workout and just didn't have the desired effect. I really need to get back to a good class before I end up a hunched up little old lady and have found an alternative I can attend so am starting this week!

So that's my lot - more a beauty/lifestyle mix I suppose - let's see if I can stick to them!

What have your beauty-related resolutions been for this year?

Jen x

Sunday 6 January 2013

2012 Favourites!


My monthly favourite posts are always running late - stands to reason that the annual favourites would be too! Just a quick rundown of my stand-out products of the year...

I'm not going to waffle on too much (for once!) about each product because I've either reviewed or mentioned them in past favourite posts:-

L'Oreal Revitalift Perfect 10 BB - still my favourite everyday BB, ideal for my olive skin-tone - full review here.

Tresemme 24 Hour Body Sky High Plumping Powder - from my June Favourites, I use this regularly - adds much needed extra oomph to my ever-diminishing amount of hair - thickens it up and adds texture.

Gatineau Defi-Lift 3D Revolumising Lip Care - my favourite lip treatment from this premium French brand. I use this at night for plumping and helping to control fine lines around the lip area. Tend to re-purchase when it's on offer at QVC. Full review here.

Emma Hardie Moringa Balm - gorgeous product - love it for evening cleansing - full review here.

Rimmel Kate Moss Matte 110 - a lovely orange-red tone, great pigment, feels great on and lasts well - full review here.

17 Peep Show Mascara - I've tried other mascaras but keep going back to this and have re-purchased - lengthens and provides the 'flutter factor' better than anything I've used for a while - a great price tag too - full review here.

Revitalash Advanced Eyelash Conditioner - again, from June Favourites, this has improved the condition and length of my lashes no end - if you think they're rubbish now you should have seen them before - I've not had to use eye-lash curlers since I started using this last year.

Alpha H Absolute Eye Complex - if I run out of this I'll be panicking - I use it every morning to wake-up my eye area - it's helped brighten and ride the area of milia.  I love that it can be applied all over the lid (top and bottom) and right up to the lash line. I'm finishing off my first bottle but have another in reserve - thank goodness! Full review here

Philip Kingsley Elasticizer - brilliant iconic pre-shampoo treatment - so easy to apply and leave for as long as you like - the longer the better but even 5 or 10 minutes has some benefit - adds much needed condition and smooths out frazzled hair. I'll not be running out of this any time soon!

A couple of randoms:-

I love this garlic puree - I use it a lot on roasted meats - joints and portions - makes a tasty caramelised topping - my kids love it!

I'm completely obsessed with Cumin Seed - it's just so aromatic and versatile - have to stop myself from overdoing it when I use it!

So my first lot of 'annuals'.  Some of these may end up 'perennials' - you never know!

What products have been your favourites from last year?

Jen x

Wednesday 2 January 2013

100 Day Spend Ban? - I Must Be Mad!

Bonjour and Happy New Year!

The other day I read that Sam from Honey-Go-Lightly was embarking on 100 day total spending ban - it's something I've never considered - I mean 100 days without shopping?

So - on New Years Eve after chatting on Twitter (and having had a couple of glasses of wine I might add!) I suddenly decided to join in the 100 Day Spend Ban Challenge suggested by Sandra of  The Black Pearl Blog ...don't ask me why - I just did...!

No - seriously - I have so many products to use up just thought it would be a good opportunity to do so and save a bit of cash too! In all honestly my problem is not so much clothing/shoes/bags but more beauty and hair products so this is the area where I'm going to concentrate my ban!  I haven't really bought much in the sales (pre-ban) just a couple of gift sets from Boots and some perfume from Debenhams so I'm going to try to control my spending until 31st March (not exactly 100 days I know but better than nothing!). I have enough skin and haircare products to last to the end of March and more than enough make-up so going to try to use as much as I can without adding to my stash!  January is my weakest time 'spend-wise' - always feel low after Christmas is over and my brothers return home so I usually go for 'retail therapy'!  I'm still getting my Glossybox each month (for the time being) and may buy the occasional magazine if there's a decent freebie included.  My birthday is also on the horizon so there's a dilemma in itself!

Some of the other lovely bloggers taking part in the challenge are:-

Sandra - The Black Pearl Blog
Alice - Bright Town Girl
Shona - Fresh Beauty xox
Jo - Beauty and The Books
Sandra - Beauty Balm
Marvelle - Blog of Shadows
Grace - All That Slap
Sarah - Writing and Rambling
Natalie - Natalie Roseanne Nails and Beauty Blog
Katie - Fashion and Beauty

Although I'm not 'banning myself' as much as some of the lovely ladies above (some of them are really going for it!) but just concentrating on my biggest weakness, it's better than 'a kick in the teeth' and with the money I save I'll be paying the good dentist for a filling that I need - oh the joy!

Wish me luck!

Jen x

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...