A place to share my two loves: beauty and food.

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal

It is no secret that I love food. Whether it is cooking for myself, friends or eating out I enjoy finding new combinations of flavors and improving my own cooking skills. Eating at Michelin Star restaurants is not something I usually experience unless I take advantage of the lunch deals, so during the holidays I go with a friend to have one treat day and this half term we settled on Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. Their lunch set menu is £38 for three courses, with two choices per course, and although this is pricey it is nothing compared to the price if we went for dinner. The restaurant is situated in the heart of Knightsbridge in the beautiful Mandarin Oriental Hotel. The bar area has a relaxed atmosphere and the walls are lined with bottles of wine and brightly coloured cocktails. Inside the restaurant is open plan allowing you to look inside the kitchen and watch your food being prepared. We had lovely seats that overlooked Hyde Park and we felt as though we had been transported out of London. 

To start I had the slow cooked Pig's ears ragu, that was served in light fluffy pastry with a perfectly poached egg and a handful of rocket. I had my reservations about the pig's ears as I was a vegetarian for so many years and rarely eat meat now but I was blown away by the taste. The meat had melted away and you were left with a thick ragu sauce that was infused with a succulent meaty taste.  I really enjoyed this starter and felt that you actually got quite a lot for your money. 
The next course was the slow roasted quail, with Hispi cabbage, smoked chestnuts and thick rich barbecued sauce. You actually got a surprising amount of meat with this dish and the quail had been slightly charred on the edge to give it a gorgeous smokey taste. This was by far the winner of the day and my friend, who does eat out rather a lot, even stated it was the best meat dish she had ever tasted. High praise indeed! 

Finally we had Millionaire Tart, that had a layer of salted caramel that was sandwiched between a light fluffy biscuit base and a rich chocolate topping. It was served with vanilla ice-cream that perfectly complimented the powerful chocolate taste. 

This was a beautiful decadent lunch and if you are looking for somewhere special to eat in London then I would most definitely check Dinner by Heston out. The staff were so lovely and attentive and the atmosphere relaxed. I would go again in a heartbeat! 

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Maxfactor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Pink Review

Maxfactor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Pink Review
Maxfactor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Pink Review

I rarely talk about products that I do not get on with on here as I hate to be negative but sometimes I find it really interesting to read about purchases that people regret as it can have an impact on my decisions. The Maxfactor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush has been raved about by so many people I have lost count but whenever I swatched it I was never a fan of the tacky texture and found it difficult to blend into the back of my hand. However after watching this video from Anna my curiosity was piqued again so when searching for a product to use in the Boots 3 for 2 I threw this into my basket. I really wanted to like this. The small packaging is so tiny and easy to carry and I also love that it can be used on your cheeks and lips making it the perfect weekend product. However I am still not convinced. I really like the colour and texture on my lips but on my cheeks not so much. I find it incredibly difficult to blend and feel that I am rubbing my base away instead of combining the two products together to create the perfect finish. The consistency is very tacky and I can feel it on my skin for hours after which I do not enjoy. Also the packaging although small is very poor quality and the lid does not feel secure. I keep giving it a go as so many people love it but if I want to use a cream blush then I tend to reach for my Topshop ones as they have such a beautiful texture that really do melt into the skin leaving a natural finish. You can pick it up in Boots for £6.99. 

What do you think of this product? 


Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Japonesque Power Curl Eyelash Curlers Review

Japonesque Power Curl Eyelash Curlers Review

About three years ago, when I first started reading beauty blogs, I was convinced by Anna from Vivianna Does Makeup to purchase some Kevin Aucoin eyelash curlers and I do not think there has been a day since that I have not used them! I just love curling my eyelashes, even on a non-makeup day I still think it makes all the difference to my short stubby lashes as they suddenly look longer and my eyes brighter. Recently though I have been thinking that my beloved curlers were looking a little dilapidated so thought it was time I got a new pair. After hearing Anna rave about the Japonesque Power Curl Eyelash Curlers I knew I would have to give them a whirl and they do live up to the hype. They are easy to use and create a beautiful curl that lasts all day. But the best bit has to be that you can replace the black rubber band for free as many times as you wish forever. Pretty amazing in my opinion and makes them an excellent investment. You can pick them up for £20 in John Lewis

What are your favourite eyelash curlers?


Monday, 26 May 2014

Weekly Favourites # 22

Where has the lovely sunny weather gone? I am writing this watching the rain pour and I hate it. Bring back the sunshine and picnics in the park! Fortunately there were sunny moment on our school trip to Hampton Court. It is such a gorgeous place and wandering around the gardens makes me so happy! Apart from that this hasn't been an overly busy week for me. On Friday I went with the girls to Dalston to the Night Tales event and the Street Food Market. We were far too early for the Night Tales, which took place in an empty warehouse / unit. The theme was Peruvian with Pisco Sours, Tequilla and street food such as Cerviche and hot chicken skewers being sold. There was a cool dance floor downstairs and tables to sit and drink at upstairs. Although we loved it there we did start to get very hungry so popped across to the legendary food market. I absolutely love this place. It is half inside and outside and crammed full of tables, bars and pop up restaurants. You could stay there all day and work your way around all the different cuisines. There are giant fires everywhere to keep you warm and a really fun atmosphere. I just wish I had taken a good camera with me so I could dedicate a whole blog post to it! I ended up having an incredible lobster roll followed by a pulled beef burger, with truffle mayo and a brioche bun. I love my burgers and this did not disappoint! We then headed back to the Night Tales to dance off our food! 

On Saturday I went home to help my mum rearrange some furniture in the house and to relax with amazing food and wine. I am now back in London feeling very full and naughty but looking forward to the fact it is now half term! 

Photographs: Burger time // NARS Contour // Lobster Roll // Hampton Court //  Flowers from the boy // Blueberry and Lemon Cake // 1979 Port

Posts this week have included: EcoTool Brushes // Joint in Brixton Village // NARS Contouring Palatte in Paloma

Favourite post: I have been loving wearing my hair in the halo / milkmaid plaits and I definitely think the best tutorial I have watched is Suzy from Hello October. It is so easy to copy, even if you have mid length hair like me! Watch her video here

Favourite product: I am in love with the contouring palatte from NARS, which is mentioned above. It makes the whole process quick and easy and I have no idea what I did before I got my mitts on this product! 

Hope you have all had a good week too! 


Saturday, 24 May 2014

NARS Contouring Blush in Paloma Review

NARS Contouring Blush in Paloma

NARS Contouring Blush in Paloma

I have been lusting after the perfect contour for a very long time, there has been numerous swatching and purchasing but I had never found my holy grail.  I found the Sleek palattes too orange (review here); I love NARS Laguna as a bronzer to warm my face but sometimes I find that a little too dark when used as a contour and the NYX Blush in Taupe just doesn't have the pigmentation for me (see review here). Maybe I am too picky but I never felt I had this step sorted so I decided to take the plunge and get the much hyped Kevin Aucoin Scultping Powder. However, once in Space NK the two sales assistants dragged me over to the NARS counter proclaiming their love for the NARS Contour Palatte saying that since its release their beloved Kevin Aucoin has been shelved. After trying it on and wearing it for the day I was hooked. 

I have Paloma, the middle shade, and it is the perfect warm tone - not too orange but not too grey either. What I also like about this product is that you can wear it quite sheer but also build the colour if needed without it looking too patchy. This is because the powder is finely milled and therefore easily blended into the skin giving you a gorgeous natural finish. 

Alongside the contour colour you have a matt highlight. I love dewy skin but sometimes I find highlighters a little too flashy for everyday wear especially when the sun is shining, which although is lovely can also be very unforgiving if you are too heavy handed in any area of your makeup! This shade though just gives your skin a slight natural brighten and complements the darker shade perfectly. 

This also comes in the traditional NARS packaging, which although I love when I get it out the box; the jet black matte finish quickly turns into a grubby mess when it is left in the bottom of my makeup bag! 

But the best bit about this product? It is so darn easy! One swift swipe of the brush over both sections of the palate and you have enough product to create effortless cheekbones.
NARS Contouring Blush in Paloma
I then apply this simply over my non existent cheek bones to create an instant structure to my face. The distance between contour and highlight fits my face shape perfectly and the whole process takes seconds! You can pick this up in Space NK for £30 (£5 cheaper than the Kevin Aucoin too!)

What is your favourite contour product?

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Joint in Brixton Village

I just love Brixton Village as there is so much variety with every restaurant offering you something different. Walking through you get immersed in different aromas, music and flavours. Just thinking about it is making my mouth water! 

On Friday night I went to my friends house to have cocktails on her balcony and watch the sun set. It was a lovely evening and once the boys had joined us we ventured down to the Village to see what took our fancy. The moment I saw one of the pulled pork burgers I knew there was nowhere else I wanted to go! We queued whilst the boys went to get some complimentary drinks as it was a BYO and before you knew it we were crammed round a table in the very heart of the hustle and bustle. 

We ordered the chilli ribs to start which were extremely tender but incredibly spicy! I loved the simple packaging as well! It wasn't long before the main event. I went for a pulled pork burger with BBQ sauce, lettuce and tomato all sandwiched between a toasted light fluffy brioche bun. Perfection. The best bit? The burger cost £7.50 and was delicious. If you are ever in Brixton then I cannot recommend this enough. I have tasted many of the offerings in the Village and so far this is my favourite! 

Sorry about the picture quality but I only had my iPhone! 

Where is your favourite place to eat?

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

EcoTools Brushes

EcoTools Brushes
During the 3 for 2 in Boots I went a little brush happy! I have heard so many people rave about EcoTools and I wanted either some retractable brushes or a miniature set I could carry in my makeup bag to stop them getting so dirty. I fell in love with the mini Kabuki in the travel set and as it was 3 for 2 I also decided to get the Tapered Blush Brush too as it was half price.  EcoTools pride themselves on being 100% cruelty free and that the aluminium is recycled. The bamboo handles are very elegant and the bristles incredibly soft. 
EcoTools Tapered Blush Brush

I do not have a brush in this shape and although it does state it is for blusher I have been using it to contour as I find it fits into the hollows of my cheeks perfectly. I have also been using it with my NARS Paloma Contour Palate - I know very naughty of me - as with one swipe I can get both the contour and highlight on the blush which transfer perfectly onto the cheeks in one easy monition. Honestly contouring has never been so easy but more on that another day...

EcoTools Brushes - Mini Travel Set
The miniature set is absolutely adorable. As you can see from the tulips the little kabuki is about the height of my thumb, if not smaller. I find it perfect for adding cheek products during the day and the soft bristles buff any formula easily into my skin. There is also a mineral powder brush which I use for powder or my Laura Mercier Mineral Powder Foundation, see review here. Although it is obviously not as good as the Real Techniques Buffing Brush it does the job! I have also loved the fluffy eyeshadow brush and although I don't really wear much makeup to work it has been a perfect replacement for my MAC 217 - you know when you just haven't been bothered to clean it but want something to beautifully blend your shadows together, well this is just perfect. It is so soft and works well to produce a subtle blended look to your eyes. The Concealer Brush has not had much use from me as I tend to either use the Real Techniques Dome Shadow Brush in the mornings and then my clean fingers for top ups. It is not that I do not like the brush it is just I am lazy and if I can get away with cleaning one less brush then I will! 

I also like that the brushes come in their own pouches. I have been taking the travel set rolled up in this clear wallet as it does not take up much room in my makeup bag but stops the brushes collecting any dirt that has collected in the bottom. Come on, no one can have a pristine make up bag can they? 

EcoTools Brushes

These brushes have the perfect purchase for me and I have been using the majority of them every day. Unfortunately I cannot find the exact brushes on the Boots website but here is a very similar travel set for £19.99 and the Tapered Blush Brush for £7.99 from Feel Unique. 

What are your current go to brushes?


Sunday, 18 May 2014

Weekly Favourites # 21

I got the Liberty Nikes! I was so excited when these arrived and they have not left my feet since, they are just so beautiful. I have also tried to be good this week and juice lots. Originally I was going to do the Jason Vale 3 day detox, but by Wednesday I caved when my boyfriend cooked me a delicious meal of chicken wrapped in parma ham with asparagus. I liked juicing and will definitely continue to have one in the mornings but I did start to miss actual eating!  

On Friday the sun was shinning so I went to a friend's flat who has a gorgeous balcony and we sat watching the sun set while drinking Aperol cocktails and snacking on crisps and homemade guacamole. Once the boys arrived we headed to Joint in Brixton Village for incredible pulled pork burgers with brioche buns! I will be writing a more in-depth post soon. The night then escalated and we ended up in Dogstar, a bar/club which plays lots of old hip hop. It was a brilliant unexpected night and I laughed so much! 

On Saturday I went out for a friends birthday and had delicious cocktails - G&T with fresh raspberries, definitely try it! We then recovered today in the park, relaxing in the gorgeous sunshine. It has been such a lovely week and when the sun is shinning London is so beautiful. Lets hope it is here to stay and the weatherman is wrong! 

Photographs: Liberty Nikes // Hummingbird Rainbow Cake // Joint in Brixton with friends // Cocktails // Drinks on the balcony // Chicken, Gnocchi & Asparagus // Pulled Pork Burger // Courghetti! 

Posts this week have included: Grilled Chicken, Chilli, Lemon and Mint Recipe;    Manuka Doctor Bee Venom Samples;  Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Dim Infusion 

Favourite post: I loved Anna and Marks Q & A on Youtube this week, see video  here. It is always nice to get to know more about the people you read about which is why I have added some pictures of myself and friends this week! 

Favourite product: This week it has to be the Cocoa Brown Tanning Mousse. I am completely useless when it comes to tanning and would much rather be pale than have orange streaks. I used to love the gradual tanning moisturisers but hate the smell and I also have white towels and bedsheets - not ideal! This mousse is amazing though. Incredibly easy to apply and the results are amazing. No streaks or orange patched in sight, instead a very natural looking tan that fades gradually as the week progresses. Buy it in Superdrug for £7.99!

Hope you have all had a good week too! 


Saturday, 17 May 2014

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Dim Infusion

Hourglass Lighting Blush in Dim Infusion
Hourglass Lighting Blush in Dim Infusion

Having withstood for so long against the beautiful Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes, I caved when in Liberty's the other day. The are just too gorgeous to walk past without drooling over. Originally I always though I would go with Luminous Flush as it would be the perfect shade for all seasons however after a long chat with the wonderful sales assistant I walked away with the unique coral shade Dim Infusion.

These blushes have been really raved about since they were released earlier this year and I love my Ambient Lighting Powder, read more here, they have been firmly on my wish list for a long time now. There are six shades to choose from and the idea is they act as a blush and highlight in one, creating a pop of colour and glow in one easy brush stroke. The product is gorgeous, the colour and highlight marbled together beautifully. They are handmade in Italy so no two pans are exactly the same.

After much deliberation I left with Dim Infusion and I have to admit when I first opened the packaging I was a little disappointed as mine seemed to be more highlight than colour. This definitely is noticeable when applied as I do not get the same pigmentation as when I swatched it in the shop, which is incredibly disappointing as these are not cheap! I kicked myself for not sticking with my instincts and picking the more pigmented warm pink Luminous Flush. 

However, things are not all doom and gloom! Since then I have fallen in love with the colour and finish, it is just not exactly what I was expecting. The colour is incredibly subtle but can be built up into the most unique beautiful shade. The peachy coral is perfect for the warm weather and the blend of highlight makes it the perfect glowing simple look. Although if I am honest I still have a firm eye on picking up another shade I can use throughout the year that has a little more pop to it! 

You can pick it up from Space NK or Liberty's for £28.

What is your favourite blush?


Thursday, 15 May 2014

Manuka Doctor Bee Venom Samples Review

A good few months ago now the lovely Laura from Tease Flutter Pout tweeted about a great offer Manuka Doctor were running, where for the price of postage you got three samples sent to you. Having always wanted to try this brand I quickly leapt at the chance. They sent me the Rejuvenating Face Mask, Age Defying Serum and the Restoring Night Cream, all of which contain bee venom.

Rejuvenating Face Mask

This hydration face mask offers youthful looking skin due to a powerful combination of natural ingredients including bee venom, vitamin E, shea and cocoa butter. This is a cream face mask and feels almost like a moisturiser when massaged into the skin. It leaves no residue resulting in you being able to potter around the house without any strange stares from flatmates or the postman. I always feel a bit silly wandering around in my clay masks or even the masks which although are clear are still noticeable! This felt like a really hydrating moisturiser and you are supposed to leave it on for 15-30 minutes before washing it off. It left my skin feeling incredibly soft and hydrated. I absolutely love it and will definitely be investing in the full size version, which at the moment is on offer and costs £32.99 here

ApiNourish Age Defying Serum 

I squeezed the last drop of life out of this last night and I am so sad that it is  now all gone. This serum can be used both in the morning and evenings as is designed to inject life back into tired skin as well as helping to erase fine lines. It is incredibly hydrating due to the Hyaluronic Acid and UMF 18+ Manuka Honey. It has a floral scent that is not overpowering and fades quickly once applied to the skin. It also has a creamy texture but as you massage it onto the skin there is an ever so slight gritty feeling which fades once it has all been absorbed. I definitely felt as though this was tightening my skin and brightening my complexion. It is currently on offer for £16.00 and I think I will definitely be repurchasing it before the offer expires! 

ApiNourish Restoring Night Cream

This night cream follows the same ingredients and formula to work at reducing signs of ageing as the Manuka Honey and Royal Jelly work together to stimulate collage production. This product states that you will wake with soft, plump, hydrated skin and the added ingredients of Rosehip and Propolis will repair damage. This has a thick creamy formula that keeps your skin feeling looked after all evening. I have been using this lots recently and I do feel my skin has benefitted from it. My complexion is bright in the mornings and I absolutely love the results. You can order it for £24.00 for 50ml on their website here or from Superdrug for £16.00 here

What have you tried from the Manuka Doctor range?


Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Grilled Chicken, Chilli, Lemon & Mint Recipe

Ingredients for 2

2 large chicken breasts
1 or 2 medium red chilli
2 cloves of garlic
2 saffron stems (optional)
1 handful of chopped fresh mint leaves
3 tablespoons of olive oil
2 lemons or limes - juice and some pith

Gas Mark 6-8

1. Cut all the ingredients (except chicken) very small and mix with the oil and lemon. I sometimes blend it all together to save time. Season, taste and adjust if necessary. 

2. Cut the chicken into pieces and mix with the sauce. Marinade for 30 minutes to an hour on a baking tray. 

3. Cook for 20-30 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken pieces. 

Serve with salad, couscous or quinoa. 

Very easy, fresh and delicious! 


Sunday, 11 May 2014

Weekly Favourite # 20

So I didn't get the Liberty Nikes. I had the website loaded and ready to go at 7:59 when a parent came in for a quick chat, by the time I refreshed at 8:10 the ones I had my heart set on were gone. I was devastated but chose another pair so hopefully they will be just as nice! That evening I met the girls for cocktails and burgers in Brixton Village. Unit 16 is a new pop up that does cheap, delicious and affordable cocktails so if you are ever in the area then head there, they are next to Franco Manca. We then headed to Honest Burger as I was craving their rosemary salted chips. We were not disappointed and I had a such a lovely evening catching up with friends. 

On Saturday the sun shone whilst we headed to Twickenham for the Rugby Sevens. The day started with 20 if us meeting at a friends for a big boozy breakfast and to get our outfits ready - the theme this year was Monsters. I was very lazy and just got a Cookie Monster onsie - warmth and comfort won this year! I had an incredible day and I am so glad we all get together to go every year. If you have never been then I really cannot recommend it enough! There is music, dancing, drinking, laughter and rugby. When the sun is shining it really is the best day out. 

Photographs: Monsters // Pitch // Favourite Skincare Item // Home of Rugby // Crowds // Cocktails // Burger. 

Posts this week have included: SPF for Sensitive Skin from La Roche PosaySpring Wishlist; Pai Rosehip BioRegernate Oil.

Favourite post: Lisa Eldridge is the Queen of makeup tutorials. I particularly enjoyed her recent fresh look that only used three products and her festival look. Check out her channel here.

Favourite product: With the sun making the occasional appearance it has to be an SPF this week and I am loving the La Roche Posay offerings as they do not interfere with my makeup but leave me with UVA and UVB protection. Read me about them here

Hope you have all had a good week too! 


Saturday, 10 May 2014

Pai Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil Review

Pai Rosehip Biogenerate Oil Review

This organic fruit oil has been raved about by so many people now I have lost count and I wanted to see if it was worth the hype. I am a huge fan of face oils, see my thoughts on the Triology offering here, as I think they keep your skin incredibly hydrated whilst reducing the appearance of pigmentation. However I recently managed to spill most of my Triology oil and so needed a replacement and as the Pai Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil  is a firm favourite amongst so many beauty bloggers I was curious to see if it lived up the the hype. 

It claims to be the ultimate skin multi-tasker, as it is effective at reducing the appearance of damaged skin, scars and fine lines. It is also the most concentrated Rosehip Oil on the market today. The Trans-Retinoic Acid converts to Vitamin A, giving your skin an incredible boost in its natural healing process. 

I have been using this solidly every night before bed and I love the finish that it gives. My boyfriend normally rolls his eyes at my 'lotions and potions' a name he always mutters under his breath as I am completing my skincare routine. But this little product has a thumbs up from him as he says it smells of cinnamon and make my cheeks incredibly soft. It does have a distinctive scent that is a combination of cinnamon and wood, it is hard to pinpoint exactly but it is not offensive and goes shortly after it is applied. This oil sinks into the skin almost immediately and leaves no greasy residue. I have been loving using it with a few drops of my beloved Estee Lauder ANR II, see review here, massaging it into the skin and then that is me done. Very easy and extremely effective. My skin is pretty clear at the moment, which for someone who is prone to breakouts is amazing and I would recommend this oil to anyone. I have also been using it on some mornings when I know I won't be using much makeup. If you are unsure of oils or love them then I would definitely give this a go. It deserves all the hype it gets! 

You can purchase it for £20 on the Pai website. I have been using it constantly for a month and I have barely made a dent so it is a good investment. 

What oils would you recommend?


Thursday, 8 May 2014

Spring Wish List

Spring Wish List

1. Liberty Nikes: These bad boys go on sale today on the Nike website - or that is what a little birdie told me. I was gutted to miss the Liberty's release so will be clicking refresh constantly today until they're mine! I just love Liberty the prints are amazing and I think it is my favourite store of all time.

2. Larsson & Jennings Watch: I love these watches and already have a white faced rose gold one with a red and white striped strap that I don't think has left my wrist over the last ten months. This one though is gorgeous and I cannot stop admiring it online. One day this bad boy will be mine! 

3. NARS Contour Blush: I have swatched these in store and they look gorgeous. The sales assistant said she even preferred them to the infamous Kevin Aucoin Sculpting Powder. I am after the perfect product to give me chiselled cheekbones and I think this just might be the perfect little palate as it comes complete with a beautiful matt highlight. 

4. Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair: I am running dangerously low of this skincare hero and although I am desperate to repurchase. Does anyone have a cheaper alternative for me to try? Read my full review here

5. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Luminous Flush: I very naughtily bought Dim Infusion the other day and it was a very long and difficult toss up between the two shades. I have fallen in love with the formula and finish so this is now a much coveted item. 

6. Kevin Aucoin Sculpting Powder: My quest for the perfect contour is still on and this has been top of my wish list for longer than I care to remember. I have not read a bad review of this wonder product and cannot wait to try it myself. 

What is on your wish list? 


Tuesday, 6 May 2014

SPF for sensitive skin from La Roche-Posay

I have been a loyal reader of Corrie's blog Dizzybrunnette3 for years so when she was looking for guest bloggers whilst she was on holiday I leapt at the chance. 

As the sun has been shining (occasionally) I thought it would be the perfect time to explain why I love these two SPF products from La Roche-Posay so much. I have seen a few other people repost what they had on her blog so I thought I would do the same incase any of you missed it! 

If you read my blog then you would know recently I was lucky enough to have a Liz Earle facial at their Kings Road store, see post here. The only two questions the woman asked afterwards were whether I exfoliated and did I wear an SPF? The first one I can say I have covered but the final one not so much, especially in the cooler months it is a step I always seem to skip as I have never found one that I totally agree with. I know SPF is essential for your skin and finding a broad spectrum product which contains UVA and UVB is paramount to protecting your skin from both burning and aging. I decided to find an SPF that agreed with my sensitive skin and found these two little beauties! 

La Roche-Posay Anthelios 50+ Ultra Light Fluid

This is a very light weight formula that is instantly absorbed into the skin and leaves no white residue or tacky feeling. You only need to smallest amount and I have absolutely loved using this in the mornings under my makeup. It does not affect how bases sit on my skin and it does not break my ever so sensitive skin out. I love that it is a high protection SPF and that I am protecting my skin from both burning and aging. An absolute winner in my opinion. You can purchase it in Boots for £16.50 making it a much cheaper alternative to the much raved about Kiehl's product. 

Anthelios XL SPF 50 + Tinted Melt-In Cream

I bought this before Yacht Week last year as I wanted a product that would even out my tan (my face is always considerably paler than my body),  keep me protected on the boat and not need to be replied after ever spray of the sea. This product was amazing and soon all the girls were borrowing it. It leaves your skin with a lovely tanned glow which helped blur any imperfections whilst keeping it feeling hydrated, very similar to a tinted moisturiser. I was also impressed that although I was in and out of water I never burnt once, which is pretty impressive for me! If you are looking for a holiday SPF then you don't need to look any further, however if you have very pale skin then it may be a little too dark/orange for you! You can purchase this in Boots for £11.25.

If you have any other SPF recommendations then please let me know! 

Monday, 5 May 2014

Weekly Favourites #19

Sorry this post is a bit late but I blame the sunny weather and long weekend! Last week we got a juicer so the evenings were spent combining different vegetables and fruits to see what concoctions we could create - sad I realise! On Thursday we had some people round for a big boozy casoulet which we slow cooked for over 12 hours, the smell when you walked in from a busy day at work was incredible! Our friends didn't leave until the early hours so work was a bit of a struggle the next day! 

The long weekend has been one where I threw caution to the wind and splurged on all the things I have been longing for over the last few months - very naughty! On Saturday I went for a stroll along Oxford Street, which was surprisingly quiet for a weekend and then went out for a rather disappointing meal at Bodeans. On Sunday I met my friend for some more shopping on the Kings Road before going to The Orange for Prosecco and to soak up the sunshine - absolute bliss. This is such a beautiful spot that is so close to Sloane Square, the food looked incredible too! We then joined the boys for a delicious dinner, which they kindly prepared. Today I went back to Sloane Square with the boy so I could finally spend my vouchers and get an iPad mini. I have been wanting one for such a long time as my Macbook Pro is so heavy to carry around! Though  my indecisive nature has already emerged and I am wondering whether I should have saved and purchased a better camera. Better not dwell on it...

Photographs: Picky lunches - my favourite // Naughty iPad purchase // Wish I lived in one of these houses in London // Homemade brunch // Very misty walk to work // Favourite trousers of the week // Tulips // Prosecco // Another naughty purchase - Dim Infusion is just too beautiful! 

Posts this week have included: Steak, Kale & Miso Soup Recipe // The 5 product Spring face // The repurchase: Alpha H Liquid Gold

Favourite post: I love Kirstie's blog and her post on the awful fashion trends we all went through whilst growing up had tears rolling down my cheeks. If you grew up in the nineties then you have to read this brilliant post, here! 

Favourite product: I am still loving my Nars Sheer Glow mixed with my L'Oreal Lumi Magique to give it that extra glow. It is such a beautiful combination and I cannot recommend it enough. See my full thoughts here

Hope you have all had a good week too! 


Saturday, 3 May 2014

The repurchase: ALPHA A Liquid Gold

Alpha A Liquid Gold

One of the first things I purchased after my spending ban was the Alpha H Liquid Gold with Glycolic Acid (£31.50)This used to be a firm favourite in my skin care routine but when I started using chemical exfoliating toners on a regular basis (like the Pixi Glow Tonic and REN Clarifying Toning Lotion, see thoughts here) I didn't feel it was needed and so never repurchased. However, recently I have noticed my skin has been incredibly sensitive so I have decided to be a bit kinder to it. I have gone back to basics and stopped using these toners daily, instead I use them occasionally when I feel they are needed. To replace them I have been using this secret weapon once or twice a week. It is so easy to apply: I pop it on a cotton wool pad after cleansing, add some eye cream and that is your routine done - quick and extremely effective! You can apply your serum and night cream over the top but I like to use it on its own for a more intensive treatment. 

It is a powerful product that has been compared to an 'overnight facial' as your skin looks brighter, firmer and clearer after use. The Glycolic acid is a chemical exfoliant instead of a physical one, such as a scrub. It works to unblock pores and remove dead skin cells which have accumulated over the day whilst helping to diminish the signs of wrinkles and pigmentation. 

I have definitely noticed the fading of pigmentation that had been left by old blemishes and my skin has been considerably clearer since using it. I absolutely love this product and understand why it is a cult favourite. I just don't understand why it has taken me so long to repurchase it! My only bug bear is that the lid is so large and takes up most of the packaging! 

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Five Product Spring Face

Last year this post was really doing the rounds and I was always impressed that people could get their make up routine down to only five products, excluding tools. However, it has taken me quite a while to realise that over the last few weeks I have only been using these five products to give myself a natural look for work so I thought I would share. 

Laura Mercier Mineral Powder - I wrote an ode to this the other week and it really has been my base of choice for a while now. I love that you can build coverage up in different areas and the finish is so beautifully radiant. See full review here

Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer - Probably the most talked about product in the beauty world. I have a love / hate relationship with it, at times I think it is the perfect all-rounder and some days I find it far too thick and drying. But for £4.19 it is a very good product for covering any pesky blemishes and staying put all day. If I want a creamier product then I love my NARS Creamy Radiant Concealer, see review here, as it is perfect for dark circles and uneven skin tone. 

Revlon Bronze Highlighting Palate - This has a mixture of brown and pink shades to make it the perfect summer cheek product. The bronzed tones add enough colour whilst the slight shimmer gives you a lovely highlight all in one. Perfect for those rushed morning. It can be also used as an eyeshadow if you want more defined eyes. See full review here

L'Oreal False Lash Flutter Mascara - I absolutely adore L'Oreal mascaras and this is no exception. It has a fanned wand which makes it perfect to get the long fluttery lashes every girl dreams of in a limited amount of time. I have repurchased this numerous times and cannot believe it hasn't had its very own blog post on here! 

Maybelline Brow Drama - I recently spoke about my love for this brow product as the tinted mascara helps to define each hair as well as keeping them in place making it the perfect choice for natural brows. See full review here

What 5 products would you use? 

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