Wednesday, 28 December 2016


Now that we are heading into January it's time to start focusing a little attention on to ourselves. If, like me, you've neglected everything but the 'once a week' Pinot habit then you may have started seeing the impact that December brings. Weight gain, dry skin, dry hair, chapped lips and a general feeling of bleugh is something most people empathise with at this time of the year.  So for the next month I, alongside most bloggers and publications will be bringing you features on how to treat yourself with some TLC.  First stop is this little beauty!

The Merumaya Everything Everywhere Beauty Oil is just that, an oil you can apply everywhere to make you look and feel more beautiful. In a convenient pipette style bottle, which ensures precise application and no spillage, this highly concentrated oil contains all you need to pamper your dry skin. Not only can it be used on the body but nails, cuticles, eyelashes, eyebrows, feet, lips and also as a deep hair conditioner.

The key ingredient is Kahai Oil known for it's replenishing and hydration properties. The oil is more nourishing than Argan Oil and has 3 times more natural Vitamin A than Rose Hip Oil.  Other ingredients include Squalane and Oat Oil, both moisturising and natural barriers to prevent moisture loss. Grape Seed Oil in the purest form, known to contain antioxidants to protect from pollution and  protecting skin elasticity, as well as soothing blemish prone skin. Jojoba Oil again used to promote skin suppleness and Vitamin E another antioxidant ideal for scarring.

To use simply massage as and when to the areas needed however, here's some extra tips.

  • Use on dry hair to tame split ends.
  • Use as a pre-shampoo oil to give extra conditioning.
  • Mix a couple of drops with your conditioner for extra conditioning, and to make highlights gleam.
  • Massage onto feet, pop on cotton socks and let soak overnight to reveal super soft skin.
  • Use on areas of red, patchy, dry, flaky skin to banish in an instant.
  • Mix a couple of drops with your usual moisturiser to give extra protection to the face in icy and windy conditions.
  • Mix with your usual body lotion for silky, soft skin.
  • Apply with a fine comb to your eyelashes for conditioning or to tame unruly eyebrows.

Before and after applying just a couple of drops to my dry knee!

 The product is priced at £28.50 and you can read all the raving customer reviews and also buy it here!

Sunday, 11 December 2016


Those who know me know that I love a mask as for me it's the ultimate part of a facial (if I'm doing a DIY, otherwise it's the massage)!  So I was rather excited to test the 'bliss mask a-'peel' rubberising mask' especially as I have a penchant for 'peel off' products.

This particular mask contains Vitamin C, well known for it's rejuvenating and brightening properties, bilberry extract to nourish and seaweed for detoxifying. So you're getting a triple whammy mask that looks into every skin issue, and especially hungover, dehydrated and dull skin like mine is today!

I had taken a quick look on Google and was surprised to see a few negative reviews all concentrating on the formula being runny and the mask coming off in small pieces, and so I wasn't sure really what to expect.  For the price you get 3 pots and a spatula so the product is already measured out. All you have to do is fill cold water the line marked on the pot and thoroughly stir to mix the product.  As you will see from the photo, the consistency was like smooth cement.
I found it incredibly easy to apply and I think the trick is to make sure the product is quite thick when it goes onto your face, so you can avoid the mask running or breaking up.
The pieces came off in 3 huge bits and was every bit as satisfying as I had hoped. What I wasn't expecting to see were tiny pore marks and line marks on the mask once removed. This had verified it had really sunken into every part of my face - in fact one part (see photo) even had some dirt on it (I'd just gotten out the shower and my face was clean)!
I did have some residue left, but only a small amount that was easily removed with a towel.  My face looked brighter and clearer immediately and felt amazingly soft.
The mask costs £20 for 3 and can be purchased here

Friday, 9 December 2016


Cocoa Brown by Marissa Carter Golden Goddess Shimmering Dry Body Oil

Just on my way out to the gym when this beauty landed through my letter box.  Often I don't write about just 'one product' per feature, but as my daughter and I are partial to a sing-along with Little Mix on every school run, wanted to write about this particular product. Why? Well I have on good authority it's one of their favourite beauty products.

Used in their video 'Shout Out To My Ex', this product was used to coat the limbs of Britain's top girl band and now having tested it, I can see what all the fuss is about.

The glass bottle contains softly scented, shimmering molten metal that once glided onto the skin, transforms pasty limbs into a hue of golden warmth. It's incredibly versatile, I used in my hair to accentuate my highlights and also a pop into the centre of my lips, to make them glisten unlike any other gloss on the market.  

Ideal for those Christmas and New Year parties and also to enhance tanned limbs should you be lucky enough for some winter sun! 

It's priced at £12.99 and can be found at major retailers Superdrug, Tesco, Primark or for online click here!

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Top Make-up Hacks For Christmas Glamour EYES!

"Feeling tired and looking glum
Feeling comfy with a padded bum
Watching TV is your biggest thrill
Eating Doritos is your only skill

The dreaded moment when you reply back yes
to being invited or being the hostess
When Christmas parties are coming your way
and your mates drag you out to play

So off you go to transform yourself to glam
but end up looking like mutton dressed as lamb
Well that's not happening not this year
as your Fairy Godmother Molly is here

So sit back and read these beauty tricks
and put away those chocolate bics
For at that party you'll be sure to shine
but if you don't there is always wine"

  • Never apply foundation or powder until you're eye make-up is done, as that way any loose powder can be cleansed away without ruining your base.
  • Boob tape - apply diagonally from the outer corner of your eye, so you get a great template/slant for an uplifting winged effect, and again any spills will go onto the tape.
  • Brows - with so many brow products on the market it's difficult to choose a product. Just make sure it matches your natural brow colouring, don't go too dark as this is ageing and to give a 3d effect use a subtle gold highlighter to catch the edges of the brow as this will make them appear thicker than they are. Also remember that brows are not identical so it looks more natural to follow their individual shape.
  • Use an eye primer to make eye shadow stay put and stop it creasing as the night goes on. This will also ensure the colour is 'truer' to that in the palette.
  • Lighter colours are more flattering and will make eyes appear wider and brighter.
  • Never underestimate a good eye drop - banish red eyes and tired eyes with a drop or two of Optrex before your night out.
  • A tiny dot of highlighter be it silver, flesh coloured or gold in the inner corner of the eyes will make them look brighter.
  • Line eyes with a flesh coloured eyeliner - much more natural than a white eyeliner to make eyes look brighter.
  • Highlight the lid with a pop of glitter, this is the time when anyone can get away with glitter but choose just a smidgen.
  • Curl eyelashes to make them appear bigger and always comb through - clumpy mascara is ageing.
  • Choose a couple of individual false lashes instead of strips to really accentuate the shape of your eyes.
  • A metallic liner on the lids is really flattering, try navy, olive or bronze.
To help you along your way - here's some great products, which have been tried and tested by moi!

Avante Dynamic Effect Mascara £36 Dynamic Lash Serum £69 

Admittedly I haven't tried the Lash Serum long enough to get the results as promised (the hair cycle is around 4 weeks, so you need to use for this amount of time). However, with the ingredients it promises to condition lashes and encourage growth of thicker and glossier lashes. Mine are quite sparse and with just one coat they looked healthier!

With just one application of the mascara I got the WOW factor.  The curved wand makes applying a doddle without any smudging on the lower lashes.  Each lash was coated without any clumping and nearly doubled in length! Best of all the mascara is enriched with jojoba oils to treat lashes to extra conditioning and improve eyelash health. As mentioned before I don't use filters and am not a professional make-up artist - I like to keep it 'real'!

Bohemian Chic Minerals Eyeshadows from £5.60

I received these products a while back and wanted to save for this feature, as the products are so gentle on the eyes.  Many people find with the late nights and alcohol that their eyes are really irritated and these products contain all pure mineral ingredients and so are non-irritating and formulated for the most sensitive of peeps.  The formulas are beautiful and I tested Rustic £5.60 - a deep shimmering brown; Pretty in Pink £11 - a beautiful, shimmering and delicate rose and Morning Coffee £11 - a matte nude shade ideal for a natural look and a great base colour.

The pigments are super-versatile and can be used anywhere on the face including mixed with a gloss for a stunning lip colour. Pretty in Pink looks amazing on the eyelids to make eyes look 'wide-awake', or as a highlighter for under the brow to lift eyes, and can also be used for a exquisite shimmer on the cheekbones.  Whilst the Rustic can be used wet and is safe enough to use as a liner on the water-line and also can be used to fill in sparse brows! 

In the photos, I've literally used my fingers to apply and the pigments blend effortlessly. The colours suit everyone and can be built with coverage to create and natural daytime look or a heavier evening eye! I can't wait to show you the lipsticks but that's another feature!

Bardou Booster Brow £25

If you're a regular user of brow products, then you are going to absolutely love this brow kit from Bardou.  Firstly, it contains fibres so actually builds the hair up rather than just 'colouring' your existing brows. Secondly, the 'glue' that holds the fibres in place will withstand rain, swimming and is 100% smudge proof. Lastly the product was an absolute doodle to use, simply fill in between your brows with the gel then blend with the brush provided. It took me less than 20 seconds to do one brow (before picture above, below after picture) and as you can see from the photo look so natural. Oh and the ingredients are anti-ageing - it's a win-win and has replaced my old Wunderbrow and gets my award for my Number 1 Brow Product!

DHC Gel Pencil Eyeliner EX £9.50

Hot of the press for January 2017 these beautiful gel eye pencil liners are a must-have for all your eyeliner needs. Be it a cat flick, smoky eye, smudged rock chick or a natural line, the easy to glide on formula ensures application is easy, fuss free and smudge free.  The pigment is soft to blend, but the colour stays true! Perfect for those with sensitive eyes and the liner won't drag the skin like many others do.  

Tested below is the brown, a beautiful rich colour that enhances all eye shades. The black is a jet black perfect for evening glamour. 

Essence The Metals £2

Essence just keep surprising me with their quality products at such bargain prices. I have often put them in the press as not only is their mascara one of the best I've tried, the prices mean you can constantly update your look and keep on trend without breaking the bank.
These metal eyeshadows are like lustrous gilt and look amazing pressed onto the eyelid for a flash of dazzling glamour.  The lightest shade Vanilla Brilliance can be used to highlight under the brow and on the inner corner of the eye to widen eyes. Both the other shades I tested Patina Glow and Frozen Toffee look incredible on their own with just lashings of mascara, or for a real statement try layering over a darker shade for enchanting glamour. Another tip is to mix with lipgloss or blend a tiny amount to the centre over lipstick to update into a beautiful metallic shade. 

Sunday, 4 December 2016

My Christmas Wish List

Having to write my Christmas Gift Guides in November and choosing the best of the products to put in, is a great job (even if it is unpaid) and so I never take it for granted! However, there is only so much sampling and reviewing one can do, and having written about 7 different guides I wanted to concentrate on other features.  That was until these beauties pinged up on my inbox and quite frankly there was no way I wasn't going to let them bypass my sniff, slather and admire inspection!

For every girl out there who loves the halls of Selfridges, spends hours asking for freebie samples in SpaceNK and who still delights in decorating her arms with testers from Superdrug, these stunning products will be sure to delight her.

Kat Von D Shade & Light Eye Contour Palette £36 

The thing with contouring is it can be a bit of a time consuming effort, especially when you don't know what your doing. This genius palette really is the equivalent of painting by numbers, as it gives you 3 different makeup effects to choose from to create the perfect contoured eye.  Each makeup effect has 3 colours and one base (a quad), and comes with full step by step instructions on how to achieve your look. The choices give you a natural daytime look, full on evening glamour and a 'made-up' look.  Start by applying the base of your chosen look all over the lid, then use the mid shade to contour, the darker shade to line and the lighter shade to highlight. The shades come in neutral, cool and warm tones so suit all skin tones and eye colours.

With practise and following the diagrams included, you are given a tutorial on how to widen, narrow, lift and balance eyes.  Its by far my favourite palette I've seen this year and not only has it changed the way I've applied my make-up, its also knocked a few years off.  I was pondering whether to give to my daughter who's 13 as she would love to play around with this, but no I'm keeping for my Christmas stocking!

Grace Cole Boutique Wild Fig & Pink Cedar Bath & Shower Gel £6 Luxurious Body Butter £5

I'm a sucker for beautiful packaging and when it comes at such a reasonable price, I'm tempted to buy the whole range. This delicate pink packaging is not for the bathroom cupboard but one to be displayed next to the bath.

Even with my blocked sinuses, I could smell the uplifting fragrance of fig and graceful notes of pink peony as I poured a capful under my bathroom tap.  My dried parched legs drank in the rich body butter and my skin was left with a gentle hint of exquisite rich honey.

Dermalogica Daily Cleansing Shampoo £19.80 & Conditioning Rinse £20.70

It was a few weeks ago when I received the launch of this duo and I was incredibly excited to test.  I'm an avid fan of Dermalogica skin care and have been since it first launched many moons ago. The brand have always focused on quality high end ingredients spending money on results rather than fancy packaging and PR campaigns and this is what's seen them as one of the biggest contenders on the skincare market to date.

The products themselves are packed with a cocktail of strengthening and nourishing ingredients and like their skincare, focus on hair health.  Free from stripping chemicals and detergents they still produce a decent lather, which often when free from sulphates many shampoos don't.

The shampoo contains nourishing oils of argan, coconut and avocado to make even the driest of hair types feel nourished.  The beautiful aromatherapy essence of lavender, grapefruit and geranium makes shampooing your hair a delightful sensory experience, and leaves the scalp feel refreshed and invigorated, not to mention your hair smelling gorgeous.

The conditioner contains Panthenol, which enables the hair shaft to look smooth and so reflects shine, and also has the same uplifting essence as the shampoo.  Both products consist of ingredients to protect from heat and the sun.

After using my hair felt full of vitality, really clean and best of all my old dreary highlights had a shine to them. I struggle to find a conditioner I like, as I have very fine hair but not only did this one make my hair soft but it didn't weigh it down - bonus - in the photo I've simply washed and gone!

Anne Semonin Exfoliating Shower Gel £27

When I see a product being sold in Space NK then I know it's going to be a higher end brand, and often the price does reflect the luxurious quality.

This superb exfoliating shower gel contains finely milled grains of wood pulp to allow dead skin cells to be removed at ease, without any harshness and so ideal for sensitive skin. With anti-oxidant Vitamin E and the beautiful smell of Jasmine and Green Tea, this allows the skin to not only feel smooth, but really uplifts your mind and promotes well-being.  I loved how the gel forms into a rich creamy lather, which glided across my skin. The delicate scent of Green Tea mimics a 'purity' essence and transported me back to a once in a lifetime spa treatment I had in Dubai many moons ago. Utterly blissful.

Stak's Sprays Glittel Glitter Gel £13.99

I love glitter I really do, to the extent my nickname was 'Magpie' as anything shiny sends me into a comatose state, where one needs to snap their fingers to get my attention. However, I also have a bit of OCD when it comes to seeing glitter on my floor or on my skin and so it can present a bit of an issue!

Thankfully this glitter gel has sorted my anxieties out.  It's a light 'non-sticky' gel with the finest golden particles that when applied to the skin simply makes it shimmer. It's rather difficult to see with the photo, but it gives just a gentle golden hue and warms the skin tone up so ideal if you're bearing pasty limbs on a night out. The skin is left feeling soft and not tacky, but the best bit is it doesn't transfer onto the floor or clothes - and for this reason it's made my wish list!

Friday, 18 November 2016


One thing guaranteed to confuse most of us when buying hair appliances is, which one does what job.  Jumbo, infused plates, ceramic, Tourmaline it's a jungle out there when trying to decide what to go for.

No doubt you will see the following on many appliance packaging and so here's some jargon:-

Keratin (/ˈkɛrətɪn/[1][2]) is one of a family of fibrous structural proteins. Keratin is the protein that protects epithelial cells from damage or stress. It is the key structural material making up the outer layer of human skin.

Tourmaline (pronunciation: /ˈtʊərməliːn/ TOOR-mə-leen) is a crystalline boron silicate mineral compounded with elements such as aluminium, iron, magnesium, sodium, lithium, or potassium.

(taken from Wikipedia). 

Jargon out the way, this year I've decided to focus on a few products that I know you'll find easy to use and, most importantly will use and won't end up under the bed!  Note - I haven't had time to test all of them, but where I did, I've put photos up - please also note I'm not a hairdresser and literally tried once and uploaded the photos. Sometimes that's the best way as gives the most honest approach! Anyway here are my picks:-


Hair tongs have come a long way in recent years, and thank goodness as I've put my hair through damage limitation hell.  These ones have a wide barrel and are infused with the protein Keratin alongside nourishing Argan oil, which means they treat the hair rather than damage it! Within seconds they heat up to 210 degrees, and have an automatic safety shut off point after an hour (anxiety attacks diminished).  Easy to use they are great for glamorous curls and make styling a doddle.


At first glance this looked rather peculiar and erm something not dissimilar to a product on display in Ann Summers (come on we all thought the same). Except it's obviously not. In all seriousness this is by far the grand creme de la creme of hair curlers and for the love of God, I've finally found a hair appliance that I can do myself, without getting into a tizzy. The patented barrel ensures perfect curls each time whether they be medium or large. I've tested on my daughters hair and on mine, so you can see the difference (she has long thick hair, mine is medium length and very fine).  As the barrel is injected with Tourmaline, it promotes healthy and shiny hair! If you check out the website there are some great online tutorials to guide you.


Save space and save time with this fantastic 2 in 1 hair styler that both straightens and gives full on volume and curl.  The styler looks like a curling brush from the outside but opens up to reveal argan oil infused plates, so you can either straighten your hair by clamping between the plates or use the brush to crate an abundance of curls. Argan oil extracts are released as the plates quickly heat up to 210 degrees, which promotes glossy and shiny locks. The bristles are also heat-resistant so that you can feel safe in the knowledge you won't burn your fingers! 

Studio 54 eat your heart out - with the Disco Fever trend still dominating autumn/winter trends, this is all you need to update your look! It's fun, sassy and a little bit Fleur East and will instantly get you in the mood for dancing!  The slim square/barrel heats up to 200 degrees quickly and is ceramic coated to keep hair glossy.  It gives perfect corkscrew hair to all hair types including short and is perfect for a Christmas present.  Here's my after - but please don't judge me - I was in my nightie sans make-up at time of testing, and note the curls do drop slightly if you don't apply hairspray! Oh and a handy tip - for straighter styles but with huge volume, simply place the wand under the root of the hair for an inch lift! 


The Jumbo Juicy Tong isn't just any ordinary tong, no it's actually a hair treatment as the barrel is infused with oils from the Southern Africa.  Mongongo oil, also known as Manketti oil is the key ingredient within the aBunTu oil, a nut from the Mongogo tree.  It's renowned for it's hydrating and regenerating properties and contains natural Vitamin E.  Hair is protected from harsh environmental factors and from the sun, so it's ideal for protecting against heat damage from appliances.  This giant tong is ideal for giving volume to shorter styles or for adding full glamourous curls to medium/longer length hair.  


Finally no more getting tangled up and 'losing it' with the old arm-ache, as quite simply these tongs do the job for you.  Simply place the hair under the clip, press the button and watch as your hair whizzes into the barrel.  It rotates left and right and like many of the others mentioned features, embedded with proteins and oils to give hair nourishment and shine.  There are 14 heat settings, making it ideal for all hair types including those with hair extensions.  Perfect curls are achieved within seconds and brushed through create that 40's glamour.  


Not just any hair straightener, these are possibly the kindest straightener on the market to hair as they have built in sensors that actually detect the moisture level on each hair strand. This enables the plates to adapt temperature according to how dry the hair shaft is.  The technology is so advanced that it actually personalises your hair on a mini computer, and gives feedback on your styling process! If that wasn't enough you can also input other users so you can share with friends, making it personalised to them too!


This is the perfect tool to create waves, be they brushed through and groomed aka Hollywood movie star glamour, or the beach head undone look in which case just crimp and run through with a little salt water! Incredibly compact and light to use, these are ideal for travel and hand luggage.  Again with Tourmaline colour lock technology, this will ensure your hair colour doesn't fade and that your waves will be full of shine! In the photo below I've literally just clamped a couple of sections and it's given me full on body waves in seconds!


Not electrical but the perfect accessory to compliment any hair appliance. This gift set contains miniatures of Label.M's best sellers (note they were the official hair care brand used in London Fashion Week this year). Included is Honey & Oat Shampoo & Conditioner, Protein Spray, Volume Mouse, Dry Shampoo, Hairspray and Shine Mist. Everything is included to create and design all hairstyles from short textures, braids, updos and curls!