The Body Shop 2014 Christmas Collection

22 Dec 2014

The Body Shop Christmas Collection is one of my favourites. Their limited edition scents are released, getting me in Christmas spirit, along with some amazing gift sets. My favourite new scent this year is the Glazed Apple collection which smells SO good, I will definitely be stocking up for throughout the year! Here are a few pieces from the collection that I have tried out recently.

Firstly, the Red Musk Perfume Oil. I have never really considered buying a perfume oil as I usually like to spray perfume all over my body, however I am pleasantly surprised. The applicator makes it very easy to apply to both you neck and pulse points, and to touch up throughout the day. I am also obsessed with this scent, an intense drop of spiced musk with hot notes of cinnamon and tobacco - perfect for this time of the year.

Sparkling mascara brings back memories of when I first started wearing makeup. I used to have a clear mascara with big chunks of glitter laced throughout, I thought it was the bees knees and so I was very excited to try this out. Unfortunately this was a but of a disappointment for me. You can see hints of shimmer on the brush, however you can barely see it when applied to your lashes. It's a shame, as this would have been perfect for the Christmas and New Years Eve parties coming up.
Now I think it is a given that I would love this lip balm - after all it is Vanilla Brûlée scented. I much prefer the lip butters to the lip balm, as I find I have to apply it quite frequently, however the scent more than makes up for it. It leaves your lips feeling soft and smooth and smells like something you could eat - perfect!

Onto my favourite - the Glazed Apple Bath Jelly. The consistency is just like jelly and so the spatula is a must. I pop a little into my bath to produce a sea of sweet scented bubbles that smell absolutely delightful. The scent does disappear from your body once you are out of the bath, however paired with the body butter you will be left smelling like this all day. I do hope this is made part of the permanent collection!

Last but not least, some festive nail polish. This is the first nail polish I have tried from The Body Shop and I am pretty impressed! Application is good, and it lasts around 3-4 days without chipping (which is average for me). I applied two coats to the above swatch, which dries with a nice sheen.

Which is your favourite Body Shop scent this year?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 7: Balance Me Super Protecting Hand Cream Set

16 Dec 2014

I am a big big fan of Balance Me, I have yet to find a product that I do not like, therefore I had to include them in my Gift Guide.  Balance Me began in the kitchen of Clare and Rebecca Hopkins where they were approached by Topshop which led to a pop up shop in the Oxford Street Store - and the rest is history! What I love most about Balance Me is the care that goes into their products. They try to use natural ingredients where possible and they always display the % of natural ingredients on each of their products. They also promise not to use any nasties - that means no parabens, sulphates, petroleum, mineral oils, artificial fragrances and colours.

The gift set that I wanted to talk about was the Balance Me Super Protecting Hand Cream Set. Included is the Rose Otto Hand Cream and the Super Moisturising Hand Cream, both in 50ml. The Rose Otto Hand Cream is an award winning, anti-aging, 'lighter than light' super protecting hand cream with a delicate rose aroma. It contains a blend of moisurising and soothing ingredients which are very moisturising yet light, perfect for sensitive skin. The Super Moisturising Hand Cream is a multi-award winning hand cream which protects hands from daily wear and tear. It is a seriously rich cream with key ingredients such as shea butter and kukui nut oil (and therefore smells amazing) which work together to replenish dry hands.

At £15 this would make a lovely stocking filler, perfect for your mother or friends who like to look after their hands or just like to pamper themselves. Balance Me also have a variety of other gift sets and try me sets which are available here. This is the last day of my Christmas Gift Guide, so I hope it has been helpful in giving you some ideas :)

What is your favourite Balance Me product?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 6: The Best Of Philip Kingsley

11 Dec 2014

I am almost at the end of my Christmas Gift Guide and this is one of the more luxurious presents in the guide. The Best of Philip Kingsley set contains five of their best products, presented in a beautiful peach carry case, and is perfect for introducing someone to Philip Kingsley, or anyone who is already a fan of the range. Having researched about Philip Kingsley, I am very intrigued to try out more of their products. They have over 100 years of collective trichological experience, and adopt a holistic approach to hair care - looking at what your hair needs both interally and externally to look and feel its absolute best. 

Included in the set are five our their best sellers. There is the world famous Elasticizer - a pre-shampoo conditioning treatment which repairs and replenishes your hair. The Body Building Shampoo which gives you weightless volume. The Moisture Balancing Conditioner which hydrates, detangles and adds shine (the perfect partner to the Body Building Shampoo). The Daily Damage Defence, which provides protection against heat and UV rays and last but not least a vented brush.

At £55, 'The Best of Philip Kingsley' is great value. To buy these products individually it would cost you £110 - that's a 50% saving! I have also found it for just £44 at Lookfantastic and what is even better is you currently receive the Phillip Kingsley Soothe and Style set for free (which is worth £49.50)! So you can get a little something free for yourself!

Have you tried Philip Kingsley before?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 5: Superdry Pyjamas and Jumper

8 Dec 2014

Every year I buy Clothes for at least one person in my family and the majority of the time it is either a pyjama set or a jumper (I also always seem to buy socks too!), so I couldn't not include these in my gift guide! Superdry is not necessarily somewhere I would look for a pyjama set, however since trying out the Lumberjack sleep set I can honestly say these are some of the best quality pyjamas that I own! Both the oversized top and shorts are so soft and comfortable, with the shorts made from soft brushed cotton in a classic lumberjack style fabric.

As someone who often buys her pyjamas from Primark, £44.99 is more than I would typically pay, however the quality more than makes up for it. I go through Primark Pyjamas like there is no tomorrow as the quality really isn't the best, often shrinking in the wash or tearing! What I also like about these pyjamas is that they also come in a drawstring bag making them that little more unique.

On the other hand, when looking for clothes for my partner I always like to check out Superdry. Their clothes are always very well made and they are generally pretty modest with their logo (something which some people can be quite particular about!). I am particularly loving the Henley range, especially the cable knit above, as they are a little different to your typical jumper. They are very comfortable to lounge around in, but great for a smart casual look and this porridge colour looks great with a pair of jeans. They come in a variety of different colours and designs (46 to be precise), at different price ranges, so there is plenty of choice!

What do you particularly like in Superdry at the moment?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 4: Pamper Parcels

5 Dec 2014

One of my favourite gift ideas to share with you all is Pamper Parcels. Founded by fellow blogger Rosie, from Rosie Scribble, Pamper Parcels encourage us to take time out of our busy schedules to relax and pamper yourself. Rosie led a very busy lifestyle which involved commuting to London, raising a child and blogging. During this time she realised just how essential it is to step away and take a break, recharge your batteries so to speak, and hence the idea of a Pamper Parcel was created.

All products included in the parcel have been carefully picked by Rosie to include natural, organic and Fairtrade products from reputable companies. This means, as described above, that in buying a Pamper Parcel, someone somewhere will benefit from this box too, whilst providing you with the relaxation that you need - which makes this box even more special.

When the Parcel arrived I was super excited to see what was inside. Upon opening you can see the care and attention to detail that has gone into each parcel - it is so beautifully presented. Each item is individually wrapped and placed into a box that is made from recycled materials.

As you can see there is a mixture of chocolaty goodies and skincare products, setting you up for an evening of relaxation. There is also a 'pass it on' envelope with an organic Montezuma Butterscotch bar, encouraging you to spread the happiness a little further - which is such a thoughtful idea.

There are a selection of Pamper Parcels available for men, for women, for mums to be, for teens, for foodies and many many more, all tailored specifically to the audience in mind and at different price ranges. There really is something for everyone. I honestly think this is such a fab idea for a Christmas present, especially for a loved one who you may not get to see over the Christmas period.

Who would you send a Pamper Parcel to?

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Please note this parcel contains a variety of products from the different boxes available to allow you to see what they have to offer, you therefore cannot purchase this particular collection. 

Christmas Gift Guide Day 3: Yankee Candle Gift Set

4 Dec 2014

Candles are one of my favourite things to buy, so it's no wonder that I often buy candles as gifts.  One brand that I often check out is Yankee Candle and this year they have a selection of Christmas gift sets which I love. In particular, this duo candle set caught my eye as the colours are perfect for winter and both the candles smell delightful.

Included in this set are two medium sized candles; Christmas Cookie and Icicles.  Christmas Cookie is a very sweet vanilla scented candle (so of course I love it!) that is infused with sugar cookies and smells absolutely divine. I much prefer this scent compared to Snowflake Cookie which I reviewed here. Icicles on the other hand is much more delicate with notes of pine and cinnamon, like a winter forest. I cannot get enough of this scent and will be looking to buy it for myself!

One medium candle would normally set you back £16.99, therefore at £21.99 this gift set is great value. I may even stock up on these as a little treat for myself :)

What candles do you love to purchase?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 2: Bulldog Skin Care for Men

3 Dec 2014

I am always keen to encourage the male species of my family to take more care of their skin, however when I come home with something for them to try, they often dismiss it as being too feminine. This is where Bulldog Skincare is different. Created by men, for men, Bulldog skincare are an award winning brand that specialise in natural male skincare. This means there are no parabens, sodium laureth sulphate, artificial colours or synthetic fragrances and best of all their products are not tested on animals nor do they include ingredients from animal sources.

For me the ultimate must have is the Bulldog Be Loyal To Your Skin Set. At £20 you receive an original face wash, original face scrub, after shave balm and original moisturiser presented in a limited edition tin, creating a full skincare regime. The packaging is plain and simple, and most importantly maintains its masculine quality (I personally love it as a female!). This is perfect for someone who is just starting out, or someone who is already into their skincare.

If the man in your life has sensitive skin, then the Meet The Bulldog Sensitive Duo set is the one for them. It contains a face wash and a moisturiser that have been specifically formulated for sensitive skin for just £10, bargain! All have a delicate pleasant scent, that is not overpowering - a must for male skincare.  Together they deliver a straightforward yet effective skincare routine that is perfect for any man.

Have you managed to encourage the men in your life to look after their skin?

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Christmas Gift Guide Day 1: Osmo Hair Care

2 Dec 2014

Osmo Hair Care

Osmo are a brand that I feel are very underrated and therefore I highly recommend you give them a try! Osmo are a professional hair care company, born and bred here in the UK. They aim to be the leaders in haircare by pushing creative boundaries to create technologically advanced products. I first learnt about Osmo when I was on the hunt for a new purple shampoo. I came across their mission silverising shampoo and conditioner and fell in love. So when I learnt about their gift sets I was excited to include them in my gift guide!

Osmo Hair Care

My favourite of the bunch is The Golden Luxury Gift Pack - The Berber Oil Collection.  This collection is infused with the very beneficial oil - Argan Oil, adding a touch of luxury to anyone's hair care routine.  At £16.95 this is a very affordable gift set that has a luxurious feel. It contains the Shampoo Rejuvinating Cleanser, which moisturises and hydrates, the Mask Restauration Therapy, to replenish elasticity and bounce and the hair treatment, which strengthens nourishes and hydrates, worth an amazing £41.98. All are full sized products and smell beautiful - perfect for any female friend or family member.

Osmo Hair Care

Although the majority of the gift sets are aimed at woman, there is one particularly aimed at men - The Grooming Kit. Included in this set is the Matte Clay Extreme, an extreme hold texture wax, the Shaper Maker, to create texture and shine and the Detoxify shampoo to remove product build up. These three are an essential for any male who looks after their hair. Again, this kit is very affordable at £14.95 and would cost you £22.05 if purchased separately. The clay is very fruity and fresh, like watermelon, whereas the shampoo has a eucalyptus scent - neither too girly keeping that masculine touch.

I don't know about you guys, but there is always someone in my family that I buy haircare products for and Osmo are a strong contestor this year! What do you think?

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Why the Lack of Posts?

1 Dec 2014

Firstly, Happy December!! It is only 24 days till Christmas :) Secondly, I want to apologise for not posting in the last 3 weeks. Recently I have been feeling quite down about my blog; I didn’t like my photos and I didn’t like my posts. I had set myself a schedule to keep myself organised, but rather than helping I began to feel like I was churning out posts just to hit my deadlines, rather than producing good quality posts. I had forgotten why I enjoyed blogging.

I was only intending to be out for a week or so, but 1 week turned into 2, which quickly turned into 3 and the longer I left it, the easier it was to neglect. However, now that I have had a break and spent time improving my photography skills and thinking about what I actually want to blog about, I am back! I may not post as frequently as previously as I want to concentrate on quality not quantity, however this week I will be spoiling you with a post every day for my Christmas gift guide. So watch out tomorrow for day 1 of my guide.

Have you got your Christmas tree up yet?

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An afternoon in Greenwich

10 Nov 2014

Last weekend, my boyfriend and I took an impromptu visit to Greenwich. It was a gloomy and blustery morning, my boyfriend was severely hungover and we didn't leave the house until 2, but off we went. I have always heard good things about Greenwich, including the market, so I was looking forward to an afternoon there.

Thankfully when we arrived the weather had cleared up a bit so we headed straight to the park to check out the famous view from the top of the hill. And what a spectacular view it was! We then wandered around the park, where we came across the friendliest of squirrels who seemed to like a pose!

We made our way down to the Queens house which is home to various maritime paintings and portraits. I am not the biggest art fan, however it was nice to walk around, admiring the beautiful rooms and ceilings. We sat in the courtyard for a while then headed on down to the Cutty Sark. Unfortunately we had left it so late that we didn't really have time to look around, but maybe next time!

Next was my favourite find; Greenwich Market. Regarded as one of London's best covered markets, it is packed full of foods from around the world, arts, crafts and much much more. I was seriously tempted by many of the food stalls but with a roast waiting to be cooked when we got home, I held off.

Unfortunately it was time for us to head back home, but we both thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon in Greenwich and even saw it as a potential place for us to live in the future!I can't wait to head back and tuck into some of the delicious market food.

What do you think of Greenwich?

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Hair Perfume: Sachajuan Protective Hair Perfume & Percy & Reed Eau My Goodness Spray

7 Nov 2014

"Perfume for your hair?" I hear you say. "Who buys perfume for their hair?" I always thought of hair perfume as a waste of money, that is until I tried these two. Not only do they make your hair smell better but they also make your hair look better too. Read on and find out my thoughts and which is my favourite.

First up is the Sachajuan protective hair perfume. This multipurpose product refreshes, hydrates, reduces static, adds shine and contains UV protection. It contains a concoction of hydrolyzed keratin and silk, and sunflower and olive oil which makes it great for coloured hair too. It has the signature Sachajuan fragrance - sophisticated fruity floral, classically constructed with top notes of litchi and green apple, a heart of peach, rose and ylang ylang and base notes including patchouli, cedar wood and white musk, which smells like a dream.

At £40 this is an expensive purchase, however you can also use this as a perfume for your body – all of a sudden £40 doesn’t sound too expensive, especially when I wouldn't even batter an eyelid at spending £40 on perfume. It smells amazing (and lasts!), does not weigh your hair down and also adds a subtle shine to your hair. This is a fantastic product.

Next up is the Percy & Reed Eau My Goodness Shine and Fragrance Spray. Although not multipurpose, it is dual purpose providing both shine and fragrance. Its delicate scent of rose and morning dew is not my favourite, as I am not a big fan of the rose scent, however it is quite light and therefore inoffensive. It doesn't last as long as the Sachajuan scent but it does add a lovely glossy shine which finishes any style off nicely. It tames any static hair you may have and does not look greasy nor add weight to your hair.

They suggest to spray a clean blusher brush with the shine and fragrance spray, sweep it over the surface of your hair for a finish that radiates shine, however I have found it works just as well by spraying it straight onto your hair. At £22 (for 100ml) this is the cheaper option of the two and certainly the more attractive looking, however personally I like the added benefits of the Sachajuan spray.

Have you tried any hair perfumes before?

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