Sunday, 7 September 2014

Rouge Edition Velvet in 07 Matte Finish

I'd recently watched one of ViviannaDoesMakeup's videos and I saw her use one of the Rouge Edition Velvet Lipsticks featured and I instantly had to have it. When I was next in my local Boots store I picked it up in a matte finish in 07.

I absolutely love the consistency of this lipstick, I think it's very similar to that of the Yves Saint Laurent Baby Doll Kiss and Blush Lips & Cheeks Stain (is that a long name or is that a long name??)! It applies extremely smoothly and it isn't drying at all which is great in a matte lipstick. The colour is quite neutral and you can intensify the colour by applying it solidly or calm it down by applying a little bit and blending it out, either way it looks great!!

Definitely worth a buy and I highly recommend it for such a bargain price!!!

alice x

Monday, 1 September 2014

Benefits of Drinking Water

Drinking water has soooo many benefits and while dieticians rave on about it and you think yes i will start drinking more water, it's quite easy to forget to do so. So I thought I'd share some health and beauty benefits of drinking water with you in order to try and get you to actually drink that water.

5 Beauty Benefits of Drinking Water

  •  it keeps your skin looking young, (filling in and plumping the skin, reducing wrinkles) hydrated (meaning it's less likely to dry out) and healthy
  •  your hair is made up of 5% water so the amount you drink reflects in the glossiness of your hair 
  •  it removes toxins and waste from the body, thereby cleanses it internally and externally, getting rid of  those under-skin spots
  •  drinking enough combats skin disorders such as eczema and psoriasis 
  •  it keeps your skin toned and tight
5 Health Benefits of Drinking Water
  • it can relieve stress - in order to function properly, all of our organs (especially the brain) need water and when they are deprived of it, it can lead to stress
  •  it helps burn fat by boosting metabolism 
  •  it builds healthy muscle as it carries oxygen to the cells that build muscle tissue
  •  it aids healthy joint movement by acting as a lubricant around the cartilage 
  • it helps you lose weight because it deceives your stomach into thinking it's full and therefore you are less likely to snack 

friendly reminder, drink more water!!
alice x

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Face and Foundation Routine | Nars Sheer Glow 

Preparing my skin before applying foundation is just as important (if not, more so) than the foundation I use.

  1. First of all I wash my face with The Body Shop Seaweed Facial Wash and then wipe my face with a damp muslin cloth. 
  2. I then spritz some of the Sanctuary Pore Refining Toner onto my face to minimise the appearance of pores and calm redness.
  3. I apply a thin layer of the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo to further reduce redness.
  4. Finally I will apply my current moisturiser: Clinique's Moisture Surge. I only have a sample size pot at the moment as I wanted to try it before I burnt a hole in my purse but it is soooo good! The woman at the Clinique counter instructed me to only use it a couple times a week but my skin is so dry that using it daily works wonders!

The foundation I reach for when I want a flawless, high coverage finish, is the oh-so-raved-about Nars Sheer Glow. I'd heard so many beauty bloggers talk about this and say how good it was and I could not resist trying it. When I first started using it, it appeared a little dry and cakey on certain areas of my skin. However, I now apply it  when my moisturiser is still damp with a flat foundation brush all over my face and I then buff it in with the Real Techniques Buffing Brush and this leaves my face looking flawless. 

When I was matched up in Space.NK I was the shade Deauville (Light 4) and I find it still matches my skin tone even when I have a tan.

It covers up any red patches really well and truly does leave you with a sheer glow which I love as it doesn't look oily nor dry.

It lasts really well and stays on pretty much all day! For extra stay I spritz on some of The Body Shop's Vitamin E Face Mist which you can read all about on my blog post here. 

alice x

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Nail Varnish Review | Essie Splash of Grenadine 

I cannot get enough of this amazing nail varnish! The colour is so nice and I'm a massive fan of essie nail varnishes as they glide on the nails so perfectly. I got it from boots in the colour 'Splash of Grenadine'

Ring Finger: Gone Potty
Index Finger: Pandora

I finish my nails with a coat of essie all in one base which gives them a super smooth glossy finish. I also prep my nails with this as it's multifunctional and is made to be used as a protecting base whilst strengthening the nails and also acting as a top coat. 

alice x

Monday, 11 August 2014

How an Apple A Day really keeps the Doctor away

We've all heard the oh so famous quote "An apple a day, keeps the doctor away" and I'm not saying that if you live on a diet of apples you'll never have to visit the white walls of the doctors surgery again, but I thought I'd share with you how it can contribute to a healthier (illness free) life.

Helps Balance Blood Sugar Levels: the antioxidants and fructose in the apples help to slow the speed at which the sugar is absorbed in the bloodstream and this prevents blood sugar imbalance which in turn helps to prevent irritability, anxiety, depression, poor concentration, cravings for sweet foods and excessive thirst.

Tackles Diarrhoea and Constipation: apples contain pectin which can work as a base or an acid (which is known as having an amphoteric action bit of chemistry for you there folks) and this means that it can contribute to relief from both constipation and diarrhoea

Helps Strengthen Bones: apple skin contains phlorizin which can help to prevent bone loss associated with menopause due to its inflammation fighting properties and as it fights free-radical production and strengthening your bones will reduce the risk of osteoporosis. 

Helps Lower Cholesterol: pectin and other components helps to lower the amount of LDL (unhealthy fats - low density lipoproteins as opposed to HDL) and slow down it's oxidation which helps to prevent the hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Benefits of low cholesterol include the lowered risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Comment below if you like this style of post and would like to know the benefits of other foods (and what foods in particular!) 

alice x

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Thursday, 7 August 2014

Mini Haul | Cabot Circus 

I recently took the train to Bristol for a quick shop and thought I'd share with you a few of the items I bought. I am in desperate need of new clothes for college but couldn't seem to find to many things which caught my eye which was disappointing... Anyhow, here are my purchases!

First of all is this book from Foyles: (which is an amazing bookstore) F**k It Therapy by John Parkin  which I had been wanting for quite a while. It's a philosophy style book and it basically telling you not to sweat the small stuff, how the issue that is stressing you out really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things and to relax and let go. I really cannot wait to read this and will do a blog post on it as soon as I have!

I found this lovely sheer striped top in primark which would I think would look great worn with a bralet (does anyone know of a place that sells any good ones?) underneath and a pair of jeans or a midi skirt. Also a bargain at only £5!

And after finding a bargain I completely splurged on a pair of trainers, which justifiably I did need! 

I then went to Zara and I seem to have a thing for stripey tops at the moment as I couldn't resist this t-shirt...

I really had to refrain myself when I was let loose in MAC, there were so many items I wanted but my bank account would not thank me if I spent all my money for the month in there! So I decided on this Sheen Supreme Lipstick in Asian Flower which is a really lovely purpley pink lipstick.

I've been wanting a pair of boyfriend style/ripped jeans for a long long time and when I saw these on the rail I fell in love and they felt soooo soft and lovely. However this turned out to be the item that looked great in the changing room and then when I put them on again at home.. not so great, so (heartbreakingly) I had to return them. If anyone knows of any good boyfriend jeans, please please let me know in the comments!

Last but not least is yet another top (even though I have too many tops and not enough bottoms??) and it's a just a really nice simple t-shirt from Topshop. 

alice x

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

July Favourites

My first beauty favourite of July would have to be my MAC Face and Body foundation. It's perfect for the summer months as it's really light in texture and doesn't feel heavy or sticky on the skin at all!

I've also been loving this very simple, very cheap clear Lash Care Mascara by Natural Collection. I've been using it to set my brows and it's done a great job of keeping them tidy and in place all day

The fragrance I've been loving this month is the Dolce and Gabbana 3 L'Imperatrice Eau De Toilette. It has a fruity yet sophisticated scent and features watermelon, rhubarb, musk and sandalwood. 

My book choice has to be A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I'd been put off reading it for a while due to the huge size of it but I finally caved in as I like to read the book before I watch the program/film and I have a burning desire to watch this series. I really enjoyed this book and it's not short of action, I highly recommend if you are into action/adventure style books! 

Series wise, a bit late on the bandwagon, I've been hooked on Orange is the New Black. If you haven't seen it, it's about an unlikely convict who is sent to prison and her time whilst there and each episode it features a different story of why a certain inmate is there. I've really enjoyed the plot and characters, possibly too much as I almost finished both series in July! 

Let me know about the things you've been loving in the comments below!

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Healthy Eating | Leon Fast Vegetarian 'Pearl Barley Risotto'

This recipe is a bit different as I cannot claim it as my own; I have taken in from the Leon Fast Vegetarian cookbook. This recipe book has the most delicious dishes in it and I absolutely love cooking from it and I just had to blog about one of them. I think my favourite is probably the butternut squash risotto or this one - the Pearl Barley Risotto, I just find that risotto dishes are really easy to make and sooo delicious!

Below are some images of the recipe if you want to try it out, I strongly recommend purchasing the book!!
(you can buy it here)

(sorry it's a bit difficult to read, comment below if anythings particularly unclear)

Health Benefits:
Mushrooms - cleansing and anti-inflammatory - feeds good bacteria in the gut - good source of vitamin D - contains anti-cancer substances
Onion and Leek - has a powerful antibiotic action - helps lower cholesterol - feeds good bacteria in the gut
Sugar Snap Peas - promotes a healthy digestive tract - boosts iron stores to combat fatigue - helps fight infection
Barley - helps feed bacteria in the gut - helps lower cholesterol - helps balance blood sugar levels
Lemon - helps prevent kidney stones - helps lower cholesterol - aids healthy digestion - helps remove accumulated toxins
Parsley - supports healthy kidneys and liver 

Let me know in the comments if you have an recipe books you recommend or if you have any risotto recipes!

Sunday, 27 July 2014

The Chubby Stick | Revlon Just Bitten Kissable

As ever, I am late to join the trend and this time it's on the chubby stick. This is the first one I have tried and after great success with it, I can't wait to try more.

I purchased the 'Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain' in '005 Crush Begun'

The chubby stick is really easy to use and you can get a good application with minimal effort. You also get quite a lot of product with it as you twist the silver bottom in order to push more of the chubby stick up.

It gives a really even and smooth coverage and the colour is quite solid after just one application. I found it to have a really strong lasting power though as with all lipsticks, I have to check after several hours that I haven't been left with the lip-liner effect!

I really like the colour I bought this in as it's quite different from any of the lipsticks I own. It is quite a deep purple pink colour and I think it would compliment any skin tone. The balm stain costs £7.99 which I would say is average for a lip product in the high street but it's definitely worth every penny! I highly recommend this product and would love to hear about any of the chubby sticks you have been using!

link to purchase this product

Monday, 21 July 2014

Healthy Eating | Sweet Potato, Pomegranate and Chickpea Salad

-2 medium sweet potatoes
-2 handfuls of spinach leaves
-1/2 yellow pepper
-5 tomatoes
-1/2 tin of chickpeas, drained
-50g pomegranate seeds
-pinch of paprika
-salt and freshly ground pepper
-olive oil
for the dressing (taken from Leon Fast Vegetarian Cookbook)
-1 clove of garlic, crushed
-1/2 tbsp tahini
-60ml natural yoghurt
-juice of 1/4 lemon
-1/2 tbsp honey
-pinch of cayenne pepper
-pinch of ground cumin
-salt and freshly ground black pepper

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. To make the dressing, place all the ingredients in a liquidizer and blend together, adding a little water until you have a mixture with the consistency of double cream. Season well.
  3. Cook the potatoes in the microwave for 5-10 minutes (until they soften).
  4. Once slightly squishy, place on a baking tray and cut each potato into around 4 wedges, drizzle with olive oil and paprika and season well with salt and pepper. Cook for 15 minutes.
  5. Place the chickpeas on the baking tray and also sprinkle with paprika and cook for 10 minutes.
  6. Arrange the spinach on a plate and pour some of (to your liking) the dressing over it.
  7. Cut the tomatoes and pepper up and place on plate with the pomegranate.
  8.  Add the potatoes and chickpeas to the plate and then pour more the dressing over the completed salad to finish, enjoy!

Health Benefits:
Sweet potato - helps balance blood sugar levels - fights free-radical damage to skin - protects against infection
Spinach - helps strengthen bones - contains anti-cancer properties - helps fight inflammation - helps prevent atherosclerosis
Pepper - promotes collagen synthesis - helps protect against cataracts - maintains healthy blood vessels - contains anti-cancer substances 
Tomatoes - helps remove toxins from the body - helps keep blood vessels supple - reduces the risk of prostate cancer
Pomegranate - reduces the risk of prostate cancer - helps keep blood vessels supple - blocks enzymes that destroy cartilage - provides antiviral protection 

If you have any healthy recipes or ideas please comment and let me know!

Friday, 18 July 2014

Summer Essentials | The Face Mist

My chosen product for this post is the Vitamin E Face Mist by The Body Shop. I initially purchased this in hindsight of using it as a makeup setting spray to keep my face in place for prom and I found that it did in fact keep it on for over 6 hours which was great.

With it being a 100 ml bottle I obviously had a lot left over and so used it for its primary use as a "refreshing moisture boost" when I was on holiday. I had gone to Portugal where the temperature had been in the 30s leaving me feeling hot and sticky so I whipped out my face mist and felt instantly refreshed! At £8.50 it's definitely worth a buy!

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Healthy Eating | Butternut Squash and Halloumi Salad

I have recently joined the gym in best efforts of a healthier lifestyle and I feel it would be wasted time if I came home to eat fatty processed foods filled with artificial flavourings so I have been trying out a few salad recipes of my own. I found this delicious yet it is also really nutritious...

- spinach leaves
- 1 stick of celery
- 1/2 an orange pepper
- 1/2 a courgette
- 1/4 of a butternut squash
- 1/4 tin of sweetcorn
- 30g halloumi cheese
- dried thyme and coriander
- salt
- pepper
- 3 tbsp olive oil
for the dressing
- 50ml olive oil
- juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 tbsp honey

  1.  Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Peel the butternut squash and cut into 1cm cubes and place on a baking tray. Drizzle 1 tbsp of oil over the squash and roast for 20 minutes.
  2. Dice all of the vegetables and slow roast them in a baking tray with the remainder of the oil and season with the herbs, cook for 20 minutes.
  3. Layer the spinach leaves and sweetcorn onto a plate.
  4. Make the dressing by adding all the ingredients into a bowl and whisking thoroughly together until they have formed an emulsion.
  5. Cut the cheese into small pieces and fry the in vegetables remainder oil until browned.
  6. Drizzle half of the dressing over the leaves and then place the vegetables and halloumi on top.
  7. Pour the rest of the dressing over the salad, enjoy!

Health Benefits:
Courgette - aids water balance - lowers cholesterol and stroke risk - supports efficient metabolism 
Sweetcorn - fights age-related vision loss - promotes a healthy digestive tract  
Spinach - helps strengthen bones - contains anti-cancer properties - helps fight inflammation - helps prevent atherosclerosis
Celery - helps lower blood pressure - has a diuretic action - promotes feeling of fullness - promotes healthy joints and muscles
Pepper - promotes collagen synthesis - helps protect against cataracts - maintains healthy blood vessels - contains anti-cancer substances 
Butternut Squash - helps fight inflammation - lowers risk of heart disease and stroke - promotes bowel regularity - supports a healthy pregnancy 

If you have any salad recipes on your blog please link me!

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Summer Essentials | The Bronzer

I have previously found when using a bronzer on my skin (with my skin type being dry) that it seems to go cakey after only an hours wear and it looks too orange toned on my fair skin. So I set out to try and find a liquid bronzer that left me with a summer a glow and could be used to define my cheekbones.

I decided to try a high street product and searched the shelves of Superdrug, Boots and The Body Shop in hope of finding something reasonably priced and good quality. I found just what I was looking for in The Body Shop.

I decided on the "Honey Bronze Bronzing Gel For Face" at £12.00
The product description claims it to be moisturising, light and non greasy and suitable for all skin types and it is true to its word! The tube contains 30ml and little goes a long way making it great value for money. I use my Real Techniques Stippling Brush to apply the the bronzer and I apply on my cheek bones for definition and just a tiny amount on my forehead as that is one of the places the face naturally catches the sun. (a link to the bronzer) (a link to the brush which is also available at Boots and Superdrug)

Any bronzer recommendations? 

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Detox Water | Lemon Water

I've always been interested in health and fitness and over the past few months I've been seeing more and more about healthy living and felt that I wanted to make some changes to my lifestyle. I am currently studying for my exams so can't commit to a full on workout regime at the gym (though I am doing so small home workouts) but thought that I could make some small changes in my diet.

The first thing I have done is looked into what Detox Waters are all about. They follow the same idea as Detox Diets; flushing away the bad toxins with added health benefits. I'm going to try and drink 3 a week.

(not my picture)

This week I tried a Lemon Water. I simply added half a sliced lemon to my bottle of water and drank it over the course of a couple hours (though it is recommended to drink it when you wake up). Before I did this, I looked up what makes lemons so good as I think it's all very well hearing it has benefits but you need to know why they're so good.

Lemons are packed with nutrients - Vitamin B & C, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and fibre. These are the things that are responsible for lemons benefits. 

Aids Digestion - this equally means it helps to prevent indigestion: the horrible thing that makes you bloat, burp and cause heartburn.
WHY: 1) it helps to loosen toxins in the digestive track 2) it gives the liver a boost in producing bile which is a vital acid in digestion

Strengthens Immune System - they're excellent at curing colds.
WHY: the Vitamin C in the lemon helps to prevent the body suffering from immune system deficiencies

Relieves Stress - enhances your mood hence reducing depression and anxiety.
WHY: when your Vitamin C levels drop you become stressed, lemons revive this

Clears Skin - keeps your skin radiant and blemish free AND prevents wrinkles and acne
WHY: 1) antioxidants (e.g. the Vitamin C) decrease blemishes 2) its alkali pH helps to kill some of the acne causing bacteria

Cleanses System - flushes out bad toxins
WHY: enhances enzyme production which in turn stimulates the liver which flushes away the unwanted substances 2) lemon acts a diuretic which means it increases the rate at which the body removes fluid

Aid Weight Loss - stops snacking and over eating
WHY: contains pectin fibre which fights hunger cravings

I found I was experiencing the benefits of lemon water even after the first time I drank it. Normally when I wake up, I feel I have a 'good stomach' (as good as it gets for me at the moment anyhow!) but after eating my second meal I appear bloated. However, when I drank this throughout the day, I hardly bloated at all and my stomach maintained its 'goodness'. I also noted I was slightly more energetic with less blemished skin. It's definitely going to be a change in my diet it that sticks and something I highly recommend to all of you!

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Wish List | 21/04/14

Evidently, I have dated this Wish List post in the title as the things I want change pretty much every day. In fact, if it wasn't tedious for you to read I would happily write a Wish List post daily. Anyhow, here are a few (okay quite a lot) of things I currently want.

Firstly, I want to purchase the matching conditioner to the shampoo I am using at the moment - John Frieda Go Blonder Conditioner in best efforts to get my golden locks for the summer. I might even go all out and purchase the spray of this collection too!

Whilst on the subject of hair, I recently popped into John Lewis and felt my heart cry out to all the lovely hair care brands in store. My eyes were first drawn to the Percy & Reed section and while there is not a particular product of theirs I want at the moment, I definitely want to invest in something soon! I then came across a brand I had not heard of before called mop with it's eye catching simple, modern design. Everything just looked so cool and sounded really good for your hair and I can't wait to get something from there.

Onto makeup... I've recently taken a liking to the idea of contouring your cheeks to make it look like you have more defined cheekbones but found that powder products can look cakey on top of foundation which is never a good look. After looking online for what seemed like years, I stumbled across the MAC Pro Sculpting Cream which claims to sculpt and shape the face. Cannot wait to add this to my small MAC collection.

In just over a month I will be getting my braces off (and I am SO excited) and I want to have lovely lips to go alongside my new veneers. When I am next at the MAC counter, I want to choose another of their lovely lipsticks and quite possibly a lip liner too. However, I know (thanks to Tanya Burr) that lip gloss is more on trend this season. I firstly want to order one of her lipglosses from her collection as they all look lush and I've heard great things about them! I also want to buy the Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker as my lips aren't the most full and this claims to do great things, please let me know in the comments if you know of any other lip glosses that plump your lips!

Clothing, Shoes & Accessories 
I have really really really wanted some white skinny jeans for a while now and when I saw that Topshop did their Joni jeans in white in the Petite range, I was more than excited. That was until I went to add them to my basket and found they were out of my size :( :( but as soon as they are back in stock I will own a pair!

When I was last in American Apparel I was once again drawn to their beautiful range of scrunchies, particularly the check and floral ones so I made a mental note to pay a quarter of the price and buy some off of eBay... 

I haven't bought any new shoes for far too long and I'm really struggling with summer footwear! I want some new Nike/New Balance/Adidas trainers but I can't seem to find any I like, so if you have any recommendations please comment them below! However I do really like these pastel coloured converse...

Finally, with summer just around the corner, I am in desperate need of new sunglasses! (I say as if England will ever have enough sun for this to be a necessity) I really like the cat-eye style ones and found these for only £13 on Asos. 

I think I shall finish my wish list here as it's getting excessively long but I'm sure I'll be back with an update soon!