Monday, 29 September 2014

Yes To Cucumbers Soothing Hypoallergenic Facial Wipes

I can't even remember the last time that I actually bought a pack of facial wipes.  Ever since I started following Caroline Hirons, I have definitely kept completely clear of them and haven't touched them since!  A while back, I won another giveaway and managed to bag myself a goodie bag full of Yes To products!  I've never tried anything from Yes To before, so was really looking forward to trying some of their bits!

Yes To Cucumbers Face Wipes Review

I started with the Yes To Cucumbers Soothing Facial Wipes, which I first used after a night out to take my make up off when I was staying at a friends house.  I have to say that since switching to oils and balms to take my make up off, these wipes didn't remove my make up effectively at all, and definitely didn't do very well battling against the Benefit They're Real mascara!  (It'd take a good wipe to get that mascara off..)  The wipes actually left my skin quite sore, tight and a little bit stingy which was surprising as they're sold as soothing facial wipes.

I didn't think it was fair to just base my review on one use, and have used them again this weekend but I didn't use them to take my make up off; more of just a facial refresh whilst I was sat at home.  The stinging sensation didn't come back this time, and the wipe did feel a lot more soothing during use.  The towelettes are quite thick and a lot more luxury feeling compared to the Nivea/ASDA wipes I used to religiously use.  But my skin still did feel a little tight after use, although it did feel nice and smooth.

Yes To Cucumbers Face Wipes Review

Ingredients wise, these wipes are 98% natural which I am pretty impressed by.  The wipes are enriched with skin loving ingredients such as cucumbers to exfoliate, soothe and de-puff, green tea to help prevent break outs, and aloe vera for some much needed moisture.  They're also oil, SLS, petroleum and paraben free!

I don't think I'd rush out to buy another pack of these, and won't be using the rest of this pack very quickly either.  I think I will slot them into my gym bag to gently clear my face after I've finished sweating like a pig to try and refresh my face if I'm busy straight after.  I'm not a fan of cucumber, and the smell just isn't one for me - after a night out, I found the scent of these really hard to look past, but since using them more sober again, I can get over the smell and  it really doesn't last long at all.

Have you tried anything from the Yes To range?

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Avon Advanced Techniques Moroccan Argan Hair Oil

The Avon Advanced Techniques 360 Nourishment Moroccan Argan Oil Leave In Treatment literally has the longest product name I have ever written on this blog...literally ridiculous.  I don't even know how you would fit that in the tiny box that you write the product name in on the Avon hand written order forms!  Joking aside, this is a hair treatment which I have had for quite a long time but have only started using again recently.

Avon Advanced Techniques Morroccan Argan Oil Review

I don't know why I stopped using this, as for the price (currently just £2.55 on the Avon website!), this really is a great product.  It is called a hair oil, but it feels a bit thicker than your normal oil, kind of more like a serum - it doesn't uncontrollably run around my hand, and doesn't leave behind an oily residue.  It has an almost fruity scent that is really pleasant, but doesn't linger once on the hair.  As far as ingredients go, I can't actually see anything on the website or on the bottle, but I don't imagine it to have a high content of Moroccan Argan Oil!

I don't really care for spending a fortune on hair care; as far as shampoo and conditioner goes, I usually just buy whatever is on offer at the time.  But more recently, I have found that I needed a little something extra to add to my routine to keep everything that little bit neater.

My hair is naturally straight, but always has that annoying halo of frizzy hair just everywhere, and seems a little more unruly since I bleached the ends.  The Avon Argan Oil really smoothes all that down and leaves my hair looking neat, really shiny and definitely easier to brush after I've dried my hair.  My hair doesn't feel greasy after use, and doesn't look or feel like it has any extra product in it.  My hair is quite lacking in volume as well, so I was worried that an extra product would take out any "volume" I had, but it is so light weight!

I apply a small amount of this to the lengths of my hair when it has been towel dried, and then continue as normal.  An oil was something that I never really thought I'd like to apply to my hair - my hair gets greasy really easily, and the last thing I thought I'd want was an oil.  But on using this, my hair has become so much more manageable and just feels so much nicer!  I'm pretty much out of this bottle now, maybe a few more applications left in this bottle, but I definitely think I will treat my hair to a second!

When was the last time you bought anything from Avon?

Friday, 26 September 2014

Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream

You know when you get a sample sized product?  How often is it that you actually buy the full size?  For me, it's really not that often.  One product that I bought though as soon as I ran out was the Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream.  And let me tell you...I won't beat around the bush here.  It's bloody good stuff.

Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream Review

The Wonder Eye Cream claims to soothe, brighten and lift the eye area - check, check and not entirely convinced, but the other two do such a good job, you know what?  I'm not bothered if it lifts or if I would even notice if it did.  This is the first eye cream that I have actually loved to use; I always (used to) buy an eye cream with the best intentions of slotting it nicely into my skin care routine, but always used to get bored quite quickly of applying them - I'm a lazy girl, and I like things to be simple and quick!

Containing an extensive list of skin loving ingredients (hyaluronic acid, coconut oil, carrot oil, rosehip oil, chamomile, cucumber oil, witch hazel...), this is an eye cream that I just can't get enough of!  If I have had a tiring few days, this re-energises my eyes and makes me look more awake.  I feel like it has a slightly zingy scent to it - maybe a faint bit of a citrus or ginger?  And the scent even helps to lift me into feeling more awake!  I feel as though it erases any dark circles, and completely smoothes over my skin.

It absorbs quickly into the skin, but still leaves it feeling really moisturised and...just amazing.  I love it so ridiculously much.  It comes in a tube with a pump making it easy to dispense the perfect amount - one pump is more than enough to do both eyes.  The only thing that I don't like is that the tube is opaque so I can't see when I'm running out!  I have the fear that one day, I'll go to do my morning or evening pump and be out...cold turkey on the eye cream.  And then...just maybe then, I think a tear or two may be shed.

At £20, it's not your cheapest eye cream, but this is by far the most effective eye cream I have ever used.  Maybe when I am a bit older, I might have to invest in something different, but for now, this is just perfect!  I just can't get enough of this Wonder Eye Cream.

Have you tried the Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream?  What's your eye saviour?

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

MUA Out There Plumping Lip Gloss in Buff

I've said it before, and I'll say it again...I'm not really a lip gloss person.  Notice the really in there...  When I was younger, lip gloss used to be the only thing I owned for lip products.  But even though I had a decent stash, I used to hate wearing them.  They were far too sticky, and that's something that has always stuck with me and probably is something that will always be in the back of my mind when buying a lip gloss.  That's why I'm always surprised when I try a lip gloss and actually like it.

MUA Out There Plumping Lip Gloss in Buff Review Swatches

The MUA Out There Plumping Lip Gloss is one of those lip glosses that has passed my tests, and actually manages to make its way onto my lips.  I've been wearing this quite a lot lately, which says something about its stickiness seeing as it's now getting a lot windier and I'm not getting clumps of hair sticking to my lips so it looks as though I'm sporting a rather badly groomed moustache.

MUA Out There Plumping Lip Gloss in Buff Review Swatches

I have the shade Buff which is a really wearable shade; it's a brown based lip gloss with a hint of peachy pink.  It blends effortlessly into my lips, and looks like a really natural shade - one of those classic 'my lips, but better shades.'  It gives them some subtle definition, and I can only imagine how much better this could look had I lined with a nude liner!  (Note to yourself a nude lip liner...)

MUA Out There Plumping Lip Gloss in Buff Review Swatches

Something that surprised me was how much I liked the applicator wand.  It's so so long that if this shade was a bolder colour, I'd really struggle to apply accurately to my lips.  But for this nude lip shade, it just feels strange to hold, but strange in a good way!  I really like it!  It's a doe foot applicator, and it transfers just enough product for a clean application - I like to use two dips, one for each lip, with a little rub together afterwards!

This lip gloss is sold as a plumping lip gloss, and I just don't find this remotely plumping at all.  It doesn't give me any sort of tingle to my lips like other plumping glosses have, but I guess with all lip gloss you do get a little bit pouty...but not an involuntary pout with Buff!  I also found that it had a little bit of a synthetic taste, not really any particular flavour either, so that could be something that could be better about it.  At the same time, this lip gloss costs just £2 and I'd definitely be prepared to pay that again for this lip gloss!

Edit:  I checked today on the MUA website...turns out Buff is now in the sale for an even better bargain - just £1!

Are you a lip gloss lover?  What's your favourite nude lip product?

Monday, 22 September 2014

Nails Inc 2013 Autumn Winter Collection

It's getting cold now; the knitwear has come out, my coats are out at least once a week, my boots are firmly on and I've got out my fat socks for in the house.  Alongside all of this, I've been shunning my pastel and coral polishes in favour of darker, richer shades.  Whilst browsing through my collection, I came across this unopened gift set from Nails Inc!

Nails Inc Autumn Winter 2013 Collection Swatches and Review

I actually won this on a Twitter giveaway last year, but for some reason or another never got round to using it, but I really love the shades!  Inside there are four full sized nail polishes which are; Old Bond Street, St Martins Lane, Oxford Street and Regent Street.  

From top of the swatches to the bottom; Regent Street is a dark wine shade with brown undertones to it.  I think it has that quality to it where in some lights you can really see the red tones within, but in other lights you can see the browns.  I really love this shade, and it is definitely one that matches this seasons trend of Oxblood!  St Martins Lane is the shade I have had most use from, and is a bold purple grape shade.  Oxford Street is a more unusual shade, and has a real toffee tone to it.  Old Bond Street is a gorgeous deep blue with almost a purple tone to it.    

Nails Inc Autumn Winter 2013 Collection Swatches and Review

The formula has been really easy to apply - two coats for a completely even finish, but you could probably get away with doing one on all except Old Bond Street!  I think it's just habit to do the second for me to be honest.  The finish is very glossy, and just looks so perfect for the new season.  I always feel more glammed up with a high gloss nail.  The wear time is pretty good too!  I managed four days before I got my first chip.

I'd definitely recommend picking this up whilst you still can.  It's currently on sale on Beauty Bay for a bargain of £15, which is just £3.75 per polish!  This years 2014 collection looks just as nice, but with lighter shades, in the new Nails Inc packaging and you only get three but with 14ml instead of 10ml a bottle.  (Still a shame to be a shade down, but I love the dusky pink!)

Which shade is your go to shade for Autumn/Winter?

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Autumnal Baking: Peach, Apple & Rhubarb Crumble

The last few weekends, Liam's Mum has given us a big bag of home grown rhubarb so the obvious choice  to us was to make a Rhubarb Crumble!  I initially browsed for some other recipes to use it in, and came across a Rhubarb Upside Down Cake which really took my fancy, but Liam wasn't a fan.  Even though he doesn't really do puddings - he loves the classics, and now it's coming to Autumn, a hot treat seems reasonable!

I didn't realise just how easy it was to make a crumble, so I thought I'd share with you how I did it!  I added in some extra fruit, because our smoothie maker broke last week so we've had a lot more fruit left at the end of the week - the first time I made one, I added in victoria plums, and this week I added in a couple of apples, and some flat peaches!

I'll point out now - I'm no food photographer, and to be honest, I hate it when you follow a recipe and it turns out looking nothing like the photo from the recipe.  Here you've got a proper home cooked recipe, complete with photos of how mine turned out from a novice baker!  (I'll stop with my baking excuses now!)

You will need:

     110g BUTTER
     180g PLAIN FLOUR

Peach, Apple and Rhubarb Crumble Recipe

You want to start by pre-heating your oven to 180, and then start chopping up your fruit.  I chopped my rhubarb to around two inches in length, and was sure to peel my peaches and apples.  After throwing everything into my crumble dish, I sprinkled six tablespoons of caster sugar and four tablespoons of water across my fruit.  The recipe I was following did ask for eight tablespoons of caster sugar, but it was way too sweet the first time we tried it - especially with all the sugar from the fruit!  I will probably try lowering the amount of sugar again next time just to see if it's even needed at all!  I roasted my fruit for around ten minutes to soften them up a bit.

Whilst your fruit is roasting, you can start on your crumble topping!  Add your butter, demerara sugar and flour to a bowl and start massaging it through your fingers until you have that crumble texture and all of your ingredients have been mixed.   By the time you've done that, it should be almost time to take your fruit from the oven.  After your ten minutes are up, sprinkle your crumble topping over the top and bake for around forty minutes or until the topping has changed to a golden brown!

Peach, Apple and Rhubarb Crumble Recipe

Well...I love puddings, so I really enjoyed this; I served mine with some hot custard!  I'd definitely make another, and next time I might try an apple crumble with a bit of cinnamon in!  Leave a comment below if you've got any recipes for some Autumnal cooking as I'm starting to feel very cosy, and have been craving all sorts of traditional home cooked meals!

What's your favourite Autumnal dessert?

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Mini Mentions: DHC Deep Cleansing Oil

Sometimes it's hard to commit to buying a full sized product, either because you aren't sure if you're going to like it, or it's just too much money to risk buying a full size for it to not work as you had hoped.  Sometimes, you might just get a decent sized sample in a monthly beauty box and have managed to test it enough so that you have something to say about it - a mini mention perhaps!

This sample size of the DHC Deep Cleansing Oil actually came in a Glossybox that I got sometime last year!  I had never heard of DHC at the time, and back then never dreamed of adding an oil to my already oily skin.  It's safe to say it was shoved to the back of my drawers, never to see the light of day again until recently.  I went to Spain in July and was aiming for light packing, which is when I rediscovered this little bottle of goodness!

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil Review

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil is something I have heard of now -  a lot.  Turns out it's a beauty cult classic which originates from Japan!  You put a small amount of this oil onto your hands and massage onto your dry face; I found that it easily removed all of my make up and even managed to dissolve my waterproof mascara.  I didn't break out which says wonders for me, as on holiday SPF usually just has a disaster with my skin (back especially, but let's not go there...) so I think it managed to thoroughly cleanse my skin including any unwanted SPF in the evening.  It also rinsed off very easily, and left my skin feeling cleansed, smoothed and not at all oily.

The scent of this is a little strange to me.  I'm not the biggest fan of it, because it's made with rosemary and olive oil and I don't love the smell of olive oil.  It also reminds me of cooking, and I just can't get it out of my head that it smells like cooking oil in a greasy way.

Whilst I like this cleansing oil, I don't love it as much as I thought I might considering it's done its rounds like Bioderma.  I think I'll be sticking with The Body Shop's Camomile Cleansing Oil purely for the fresh, light floral scent that one has!  You can try the same 30ml sample that I have from Escentual for £4.50, or take the plunge with a larger size from £11!

Have you tried the DHC Deep Cleansing Oil?

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Wednesday Wishlist #7: Homeware Wishing & Cheeky Reader Discount Code

As you know, I recently (I keep saying recently, but in actual fact it was May I moved in...still can't believe how quickly time has gone!) moved into my first home with Liam!  Whilst we've bought all of our main pieces of furniture, our house doesn't quite feel like a home yet because it's lacking in all the nice little decorative pieces that make our house ours.

Ask Her Friends Discount Code

A few weeks ago, I remembered a website I came across a while back called Ask Her Friends!  It is an online shop with lots of gorgeous little pieces on!  It's designed to be a one stop destination where people can go to find a gift for women - the story behind the website is quite funny, but what a clever idea and I know plenty of men that will appreciate this service!  This aside, I'm looking for things to put in my house!

Ask Her Friends Voucher Code Discount

I have found these glass box lanterns which I really, really love.  I think these would look really nice in my fireplace in the guest bedroom.  It's all open brick, but can't be used - so these maybe stacked on some cool books or something would look really nice in there, or failing that, the window sill!  We don't have any furniture in there yet apart from a bed, but I imagine when we get a really low bedside table, they'd also be nice there too!  For £16.99 I can't go wrong here can I - simple, and will literally look amazing anywhere.

This Spineless Adventure Classics Print is unlike anything I had ever seen before.  I really love the idea of this as it's an entire book with the text so small that it fits onto one rather large page.  Typography prints are something I'm seeing a lot of in homeware sections, and I'm just not really a huge fan, but this one is completely different and has The Lost World novel on one page.  I will probably buy my own frame from elsewhere, but this would fit really nicely into my dining room, above my bookshelves opposite my T-Rex head.  

These metal sphere fairy lights are also taking my fancy.  They'll probably end up in the guest bedroom again, because I want a mint and metallics theme running through there.  I think these will pair up really nicely with the chunky low bed I recently bought.

One thing I didn't think I'd find on here because I was so interested in the home section were these gorgeous pair of origami crane earrings.  I have my lobes pierced three times in each ear, but currently wear no earrings - I love the 2D origami bird, and love the geometric shape!  And they're safe to use for those who get sore earrings using cheap studs!

A bit more of a luxury purchase now, and I might have to crack this on the Christmas list and I would have to be very lucky to receive it...the Jo Malone Air of Luxury Gift Set.  This contains a Wild Fig and Cassis Candle, a Red Roses Scent Surround Spray and my favourite scent ever...the Pomegranate Noir Scent Surround Diffuser.  Need I say more?  Jo Malone smells bloody amazing.  Especially Pomegranate Noir.

Now!  Onto the best bit.  Ask Her Friends have kindly offered to give my readers a discount when buying from their store!  Don't worry - this isn't a sponsored post at all, and I'm not being paid/gifted with anything if you fancied buying something to treat yourself or someone else, I'm just here to share with you my favourite bits from the shop, and offer you some tasty discount!  Hurrah!

Enter the code CEE for £5 to spend at Ask Her Friends
Enter the code JAY for £10 off when you spend £30 or more!

The discount is valid until midnight on the 31st October 2014, soooo what are you waiting for?  I hope you find something you love!

Have you been on Ask Her Friends before?  Don't forget to share with me what you've bought!

PS.  Beauty Lovers...they also stock some Chanel, Charlotte Tilbury, Laura Mercier and Bobbi Brown...y'know...don't want to enable or anything, but you might want to check out that beauty section!

Montagne Jeunesse Hot Chocolate Face Mask

Good day fellow beauty lovers.  It has been a while hasn't it...sorry about that!  I haven't got anything particularly exciting to report, I've just been a bit quiet lately despite having so much to write about!  Unfortunately, my laptop has completely broken now so blogging has taken a step back because I can't edit my photos as I would like to!  And what's a blog post without photos...  I've managed to get something done on Liam's laptop though, so here I am!

Montagne Jeunesse Hot Chocolate Face Mask Review

I thought I'd ease back in, and start with a review of a new face mask I have been trying in recent weeks.  It's the Montagne Jeunesse Hot Chocolate Face Mask!  I actually bought a few sachets of these before I went on holiday to Spain, because I spotted them in my local Wilkinsons for a bargain ten pence!

I'll be honest...I usually bypass anything from this brand and honestly only bought a few because they were ten pence!  I hate a face mask in a sachet because I find them to be so messy, and I think that you get a lot more product than you actually need, so it goes to waste unless you are having a girly gathering or can persuade your man to swipe some across his chops.  I also really don't like the design of the packaging - for me, there is just so much going on and it's all just a bit busy for me.

Montagne Jeunesse Hot Chocolate Face Mask Review

Packaging aside, I really enjoyed using this face mask.  I haven't used a sweet scented face mask in what seems like forever, and usually opt for the more refreshing cleanses.  This one smells exactly like a melted Terry's Chocolate Orange, and it looked good enough to eat!  It is made with dark chocolate and orange oil, which give it the amazing scent, but also contains Mediterranean Clay which helps to give your skin a deep clean whilst the oil softens skin.  The Hot Chocolate Face Mask is also self heating, and I absolutely love using a face mask which warms the skin.  I think that a warming face mask is all the more pampering, and helps you to feel super relaxed!

Montagne Jeunesse Hot Chocolate Face Mask

It seems quite runny when first getting the product out of the packaging, but once applied to the face it doesn't run or drip off.  I even went for quite a thick layer too to make sure I got a fully opaque finish to my skin - I think that face masks are all the more fun when they actually mask your skin!

I'd definitely try this again, as it left my skin really nice and smooth and after a couple of uses, and I've noticed that my t-zone is a little less congested!  My skin after use is also a lot less oily!  But I just really wish that it came in a bottle!  I had noticed a few bottles of masks coming from Montagne Jeunesse, but looking on their website, the Hot Chocolate wasn't one of them unfortunately!  You definitely can get two applications from a sachet, but because it's such a messy application, storage isn't particularly easy!

Have you tried anything from Montagne Jeunesse?