Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Growing my nails and Avon Nail Illuminator review

I've recently been trying to get my nails into better shape and grow them.  I have bitten and picked at my nails for the best part of 30 years.  Even though I have always longed for beautiful long nails I just can't resist biting them.  Well this time will power has won over and I have managed to go for at least 3 weeks without so much as a nibble.  They aren't growing at great speed but they have the strength I was hoping for.  They were looking a little bit dull and weren't smooth so I have been using a 4 in 1 nail buffer.  I used it to smooth the nails and get rid of any ridges and then buff them to a beautiful shine. 

When I saw the Avon Nail Illuminator on special offer I had to try it. 

 It goes on easily and doesn't clump.  I was left with a beautiful glossy shine.  My nails reflect the light and seem to shimmer slightly.  I did think that I could have gotten the same effect from a clear nail varnish but I have noticed that the whites of my nails seem brighter and the finish is very hard wearing.  If I ever use a clear varnish it chips almost immediately and I need to re apply every other day.  With the Nail Illuminator I haven't had so much as a chip and I'm on day 4 and my nails still look fab.  The Nail Illuminator also claims to reduce the look of staining on nails but my nails weren't particularly stained so I cannot comment there.  All in all I think that this is worth a try if you like to have natural looking nails.  I don't tend to have the time to maintain beautifully painted nails so I'm liking the natural look.

I think this is a great product which is easy to apply and does illuminate my nails.  I paid £2.49 for this but the rrp is £5.  It's in the current brochure for £2.50 here I'd love to hear your thoughts if you've tried it.

Hopefully when I get my nails to the length I want I'll treat myself to a CND Shellac manicure.  Ticking off one of my "7 Things for 7 Days" goals.  YAY!!!

Thanks for reading ;-)

Emma xx

Sunday, 24 June 2012

7 Things for 7 Days : June

What do I need above everything in my life???  MOTIVATION.  And I've found it in the form of Louise (Sprinkle of Glitter).  She is running '7 things for 7 days' blog posts here so I thought that I would join in.  I am hugely disorganised and procrastinate far too much and need to do something about it.  If I write it here on my blog I may be more enclined to go for my goals.  Oh, and I love list writing too so this is right up my street.

My first priority is to sort my mess of a house out but I thought I'd throw some beauty related stuff in there to keep me interested.

1.  Take real good care of my skin - I'm often too busy with the kids or tired that my skin doesn't often get much more than a wipe over with a face cloth.  I'm quite lucky that I have pretty good skin but with a little pampering it could be so much better.
2.  Don't bite my nails (and reward my self with a manicure) - My nails are terribly short because I bite them.  I have found, over the last couple of weeks, that If I take time to keep them looking nice I don't seem to bite them as much.  They are starting to grow and hopefully I'll have beautiful nails in no time.
3.  Tackle the boys bedroom.  And keep it from becoming a mess again - It is horrendous.  I can't even open the wardrobe door.  My youngest is 6 and he can mess a bedroom up in 30 seconds flat.  I have been putting off sorting it out because I know it will take me a least a whole day.  The thought of spending a whole day tidying it, only for it to be back in the same state after a couple of days, is really putting me off.  WILL I DO IT?
4.  Find 7 bargains - just for fun ;-) - I love looking for bargains.  Whether it's beauty bargains or bargains for the home, I love finding them.  I get a real sense of satisfaction when I come across something cheap.
5.  Sort kitchen cupboards out - Can't find anything in my kitchen.  I have sorted it out so many times but my husband doesn't seem to get the concept of 'everthing has a place'.  I'm going to give it one last try and see if I can educate him about where things go.  Wish me luck. 
6.  Try to eat better - I'm very overweight but I love food so much.  I'm going to try to reduce my portion sizes and eat a few things which are 'better' for me.
7. Get some followers on my blog - Sometimes I feell ike not bothering writing anything on here because nobody ever reads it but if I don't then nobody ever will.

I'm really hoping that I manage to achive these goals in the next 7 days but I suppose all I can do is try.  I should have put an extra one in there - When the kids have been asking for breakfast for the last 20 minutes, stop writing a blog post and get them some (poor starving children awww).

Thanks for reading
Emma xx 

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Jubilee Fun!!!

What a weekend its been!!!  Had a whale of a time celebrating our queen's 60 years on the throne, mainly by relaxing and not doing much.  I'm not really mad about the monarchy like some people but I do love to join in celebrations like this and royal weddings etc.  We've watched most of the jubilee celebration events on the tv including the fantastic concert outside Buckingham Palace.

We went to my parents house on Monday for a street party.  It was the street where I grew up so got to see loads of familiar faces.  The kids had a great time as there were lots of activities organised like a treasure hunt and even a hat competition.  For the adults there was a quiz with a royal theme.  If that wasn't enough there was some live music provided by one of the residents' band. 

I really enjoyed baking for the event.  I get sick of baking the same old fairy cakes which the kids like so it's nice to be a little more adventurous.  Unfortunately I wasn't able to contribute to the "wear red white and blue" theme as my wardrobe can only fulfill the white criteria. 

Hopefully I'll get round to putting the recipes on my cooking blog and I'll maybe try to re-create my OOTD.

Emma xx 

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Garnier BB Cream

I'm almost at the end of my first tube of the Garnier BB Cream.  I've had it since November and have used it almost every day.  I have to say I'm really pleased with it.  I had gone for quite a while without wearing foundation.  I have a very quick morning beauty routine which only gave me time for a quick dust of powder and a little eye make-up.  Now I have introduced this into my regime it really makes a difference to my overall look.  I can still do my whole face in five minutes but I now have a lovely glow to my complexion.  It looks natural and I definately not like I'm wearing a foundation.  It's kind of a half way house for me.  It lasts for most of the day but if I need it to last longer I use the Clarins Beauty Flash Balm underneath.  If I want a more flawless finish I use the MAC Mineralise Skin Finsh Powder over the top.

I've just tried the Estee Lauder BB cream but it was a little too orange for me. Don't get me wrong I do like it and will use up the whole tube but I prefer the Garnier.

Emma :-) xx

Saturday, 17 March 2012

M&S Ingredients Lip Butters

If you see these you may overlook them as just another cheap gift set.  Think again.  M&S Ingredients Lip Butters taste great and are really hydrating on your lips.  The coloured ones leave a lovely pink sheen to lips too.  I was given theses as a Christmas present and they have been lurking at the bottom of my drawer.  When I tried them I was really impressed.

They come in a pack of three flavours; cherry, coconut and raspberry.  They are reasonably priced at £5.  It's great having the three to choose from.  I keep one by my bed (the coconut as it is not coloured), one in the kitchen and one on my handbag.  I'm not normally a fan of flavoured lip products but these have changed my opinion.  They are beautiful fresh, non sickly, flavours which actually seem to make my mouth water.

A lovely additon to my handbag.  Great for a mothers gift too. 

Friday, 16 March 2012

Latest in Beauty!!

I have been a subscriber to Boudoir Prive/Joliebox since their first box last August and I'm a bit unsure as to whether I want to continue.  I haven't been that overly impressed with what I've received lately so I've been looking around at the alternatives.

I stumbled across Latest in Beauty after reading an article in a magazine so I had a look at their website and was very impressed at their different approach to the beauty box.  You always know what you are going to get and you don't sign up for a subscription.  Their are lots of different ways to get your samples.

Little Beauty Box:  You select the samples you want from the list on the website and then you send a text to their number and they reply with a code which you input into the checkout screen and that's it.  Done.  The text costs £1.50.  They are only sachets usually but for £1.50 incuding postage is not bad I think.  You can do this once each month.

Luxury size samples:  They have a selection of luxury samples from various brands whuch you can purchase to try out.  You can buy as many as you like and they range in price from a couple of quid to a tenner.  They include brands such as Clarins and ARK.  You can pay for these online using credit/debit card or via Paypal.

Occasionaly they have special samples on offer.  At the moment they have the Estee Lauder BB Cream sample for £1.50 (paid via text).  I have recently received this and think that for the size it was well worth the money so that I can try before I buy the full size.

Then they have the themed beauty boxes.  There are six boxes per year and you get to see what's on offer before you commit to buy.  They are priced at £14.99 but you do get a lot for your money.  This time it was the Red Carpet Box which contains quite a few full size make-up items.  Unfortunately it took me too long to decide if I wanted it or not and they sold out.  The next one is going to be the Anti-Age Box so I'll have to be quick off the mark.

To launch their concept they recently gave readers of Daily Mail the chance to pick up an exclusive 20 years of beauty box for around a fiver.  I had to snap this up and have to say i wasn't disappointed.  I was very eager to try out the Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish so you can imagine how thrilled I was to get this as a sample.

Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish; Bare Minerals minature foundation and brush; Bamford bath and body trio; Sisleya Anti-Age Cream; Lanolips Ointment; Dr Nick Lowe Day Cream

My favourites from this box - Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish (cloth included) and Bare Minerals Foundation and Mini Brish

If this box is anything to go by I think we can expect good things from LIB.  I will certainly be keeping an eye on their website to see what's in store.  All in all I'm very impressed with the service offered.  I don't think it will replace my regular subscription box but is a great addition to search for the perfect beauty products.  See for yourself here.

Emma x

Macadamia Oil on Greasy Hair??

I received a Macadamia Oil sample in my Boudoir Prive box last year but only started using it a few weeks ago.  I have very fine hair which gets greasy roots very easily.  I have noticed lately that my hair is becoming quite dry on the ends but if I use conditioner it makes my hair quite greasy and lank.  I totally discounted using the Macadamia oil on my hair thinking that adding oil to my already oily hair would be a no-no.  How wrong I was.

I really should wash my hair every day but with a full time job and 3 kids to look after that's not practical so I wear it down the first day and up the next.  I've been washing my hair as normal, without conditioner, then combing through slightly.  I have terrible trouble getting the brush or comb through my hair when I've washed it so I have been using the Macadamia Oil to help.  I put a small amount (about the size of a penny) of the oil into the palm of my hand and then rub it between my hands before applying to the lengths, not the roots, of my hair.  I pay particular attention to the ends.  This make brushing my wet hair so much easier.  It smells absolutely gorgeous and does not make my hair greasy in the slightest.  I'm left with the most soft and shiny hair I've ever had and it feels amazing.  I'm quite happy to use this as a substitute for conditioner and it even comes in handy to revive the ends of my hair on the days I don't wash it.

If you have oily hair don't be put off.  Give it a go.  I'm so pleased I did!

Emma x

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Unexpected Day Off

No-one to take ths kids to school today so I've taken the day off.  Extra day of house work I hear you cry.  Well, that was the intention.  Came back from the school run and turned the laptop on - big mistake.  11 o'clock came and all I'd done was make myself breakfast.  The house got trashed in the rush to get out to school on time.  Where shall I start?  Will I have time to do everything before the kids come home from school?  Jack's lost his footie trainers so I''ve got to tidy his tip of a bedroom in order to find them.  Off to tackle that first as must find them today.

TRAINERS FOUND!!! Yay.  Husband looked, Jack looked and Lauren even spent an hour looking.  All I can say is thaey are all blind as bats.  Found them in 5 minutes.  Oh, and all the socks I'd been looking for.  Good start to my jobs for the day.  Put some washing in.  Think I'll tackle the living room first so I can watch the tv at the same time (naughty).  Do the kitchen while making lunch.

What an exciting life I lead lol.  Waiting for a parcel to come though.  Ordered some stuff in a sale and excited for trying some new products.  I've been wanting to try the Clarins Beauty Flash Balm for ages and thought I'd order some and give it a go.  Whilst browsing I also noticed some lovely OPI "Kardashian" nail polishes and Burts Bees lip stuff.  But the thing I'm most looking forward to is my old favourite - Beckham signature perfume.  Got some as a present years ago and I love it.  Since then my husband has bought me various other Beckham perfumes but none have ever come close. 

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Avon Planet Spa Foot and Elbow Creme - Review

Planet Spa African Shea Foot
Since wearing sandals in the summer the skin on my feet has become very rough and dry.  Sometimes it even hurts when I walk so I decided to try the Avon Planet Spa Foot and Elbow Creme.  I got it in a gift set with the moisturising socks so I thought I would give it a go.

Firstly the smell is to die for.  It reminds me of caramel a little bit.  It is rich in shea butter which always smells gorgeous I think.  Secondly the texture is really luxurious.  It's thick and smoothes on the skin beautifully.

I put it on in 2 layers.  I rubbed the first layer all over my feet and massaged it in until it had all been absorbed.  Straight away the rough areas on my feet felt softer.  Then I put on another layer concentrating on the heel and ball of the foot.  I didn't rub this in as much.  I used enough so there was a tick coating on the driest areas of each foot then put the socks on.  You can sleep in the socks but I took them off before I went to bed but I made sure that all the cream had absorbed into my feet first.

Afterwards my feet felt velvety soft.  Even the next morning that felt lovely.  The next evening my feet were starting to feel slightly rough and dry again so I repeated the process but this time I smoothed the rough areas first with a foot file (like sandpaper).  That was yesterday and today my feet feel noticably softer.  A little dry in places but nowhere near what they were like 3 days ago.  I would put it on again today but the socks are a kinda minging so I've washed them.  I may just rub a little bit in the balls and heels of my feet before I go to bed and make sure that it is totally absorbed into the skin.

Conclusions:  My first impressions of this are that it does work and it does feel like a luxurious treat for your feet.  It's usually £4.50 for a tub of the cream (75ml) and £5 for the socks but currently on the website its £2.70 for the cream and £3 for the socks.  I think that even at full price this is a bargain.