Monday, 31 May 2010

Lovea Bio L' Argan Shine Shampoo- A Review For My Pure

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The final product in May's parcel from My Pure was a shampoo - Lovea Bio L'Argan Shine Shampoo. Originating in France My Pure is currently the only UK stockist of Lovea products, which are certified as organic and are paraben free.
I was super pleased to be sent a shine shampoo, because as you know shine is a major issue for me and my over processed, coloured hair, and so was Mummy LouLou how also used this product for this review :)
I was especially pleased to be sent a product containing Argan oil even though this products contains just 0.3%.For those of you who haven't heard of it Argan oil is produced in only one part of the world Essaouira, in Morocco (hence it's often described as Moroccan oil). It is often described as a miracle product it's a multi purpose oil that can be used on the hair, and on the skin, it's high in antioxidents so it can help protect and repair cells and it has been said to boost moisture content. This shampoo also contains peppermint leaf oil which has been said to boost scalp circulation, when it's used in hair products. Despite the obvious good ingredients here I did find one potential nasty in Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate - whilst not something I want in a so called natural shampoo, this is less of an issue than SLS but still something that I don't feel is necessary.
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Anyway what do I think, well this shampoo comes in the traditional squeezy tube, it's bright yellow in colour and features a picture of the Argan nut. The writing on the packaging is mostly French but that is to be expected from a French manufactured product.
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The product comes out perhaps a little too easily when you squeeze it - the hole is probably a little bit too big for such a runny consistency, when you turn the bottle upside down the shampoo tends to collect in the lid.
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Probably because of the thin consistency, and the lack of chemical ingredients I found you needed quite a bit of shampoo on my just past shoulder length hair. The shampoo lathered well and smelled really nice. Neither me nor Mummy Lou Lou could place the smell - the only thing we could agree on that it was quite fruity, maybe citrusy? maybe with a coconut holiday smell - lol sorry for the vagueness but we did both like the smell :). I also rinsed out pretty easily but I did find that it left my hair a little bit tangled and knotted so I had to use a conditioner - Mummy Lou Lou didn't find this however on her short hair, and didn't feel that she needed a conditioner afterwards. Lovea claim that this shampoo "brings health and vitality to dull, lifeless hair" and I have to say I think it did - my hair certainly looked a lot more alive and a lot less crispy especially on my blonde streaks. I have to say my mum probably loved this shampoo where as I merely liked it. She has naturally curly, greying (but dyed:) hair which can feel quite coarse, she found that this shampoo left her hair a lot softer, and a lot shiner and made it easier to style. So huge thumbs up from her a slight waiver from me the consistency, the sulfate and the tangling lose it points from me. Lovea Bio L' Argan Shine Shampoo is available in the UK exclusively from My Pure and retails for £4.99 for 200ml.

(As you know I was sent this product by My Pure for review purposes. This hasn't affected my review in any way this is my opinion and mine alone)

Merci To May

Well would you believe we are nearly half way through the year already - what a scary thought life just seems to be whizzing by. So as we get ready to start another month it's time to reflect on the one just ending. I have a lot to be thankful for in May as the title of this post suggests - although things haven't been too great physically for me this month, as you know May was my birthday month - People were very generous to me and for that I was truly grateful. As a result my monthly spends was temporarily abandoned - I've bought some lovely things this month and I am still waiting for a few bits but then no more - I'll put some details in the posts to come section on my sidebar of what May purchases you can still expect to see but June will see the resumption of my spending diet. I really need to save up a bit of money if there is any chance of me having a holiday this year and boy I could do with one. So the spending diet will resume and I am also going to be having a major ebay session - I'm going to put a link to my side bar when I start to list so you can check my goodies out but I'll let you know more about that nearer the time x
As I predicted I didn't end up using up that many items this month - I finished so many in April it was only natural that I was going to hit a bit of a brick wall - never mind I still finished 6 items which was better than nothing I suppose

Leighton Denny Essential Nail Polish Remover 125ml
Michael Kors Shower Gel 150ml
Lush Tea Tree Water 100g
Liz Earle Nourishing Botanical Body Cream 30ml
Elemis Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser 150ml
Soap & Glory Flake Away 50ml


I have a few that I may finish in June so hopefully it will be a better month for using up my masses of products.
I hope May has been a good month for you all, if not fingers crossed that June is a better one xx

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Guest Post Over At British Beauty Blogger :)

Just to let you know that I have a guest post over on British Beauty Blogger at the moment - a review of the Nivea Goodbye Cellulite 10 Day Serum :) Thankfully no shots of my thighs just a good, honest review :). Thanks to the lovely British Beauty Blogger for giving me the chance to try it x Please check out my review here x

Birthday Cooking - Part 2 - Carrot Cake

I've showed you pics of this fabulous cake a few times in the past but I've never ever told you how to make - I love conventional supermarket birthday cakes with their normal sponge, jam and butter icing, and garish fondant icing , but alas I am a Coeliac so normal birthday cakes are a no, no. As a result my mum searched for years for a yummy cake I could enjoy on special occasions until we found this recipe on the Nigella forums - a sweet fruity cake, creamy luscious icing what it not to love. This is an American recipe hence the use of cups but I've translated the ingredients for my UK readers :)
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Mother Berta's Carrot Cake

Ingredients
Carrot Cake
3 Medium Sized Carrots Peeled
2 Cups All Purpose Flour (I used Dove Farm Plain Gluten Free Flour and 1 tsp Xanthan Gum but for non Coeliacs you could use normal Plain Flour)
2 Cups Sugar
2 tsp Baking Powder
2 tsp Cinnamon (or to taste)
1 Cup Corn Oil
3 Eggs, Lightly Beaten
2 tsp Vanilla
1 Cup Chopped Walnuts (or Pecans)
1 Cup Dessicated Coconut
3/4 Cup Crushed Pineapple (or Pineapple Pieces) Drained
1 Cup Raisins

Cream Cheese Frosting
4oz Cream Cheese
3 tbs Softened Butter
1 1/2 Cups Icing Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla (or to taste)
1 tbs Lemon Juice

Method

1. Dice 2 of the carrots and place in a pan of boiling water and cook until tender. Drain and then puree in a food processor or blender, or mash with a fork - set aside to cool - meanwhile grate the remaining carrot and put it in a small bowl
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2)Preheat your oven to 350˚F / 180˚C - grease and line a 9x13 inch square cake tin (as shown later with a collar)

4)Using a large bowl, sieve in your, flour, baking powder, (Xanthan Gum if using) the sugar, and your cinnamon. Add the oil, beaten eggs and the vanilla and mix well
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5)Fold in the carrot puree, the grated carrot, the nuts, the raisins, the coconut, and the pineapple - Your finished cake mix should be a soft dropping consistency - if its too stiff you could add an extra small egg
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6)Pour your mix into your cake tin smoothing out the top
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7)Bake until a skewer comes out clean the original recipe said this should be about an hour but we sometimes find it takes a bit longer - if you think the top is getting a bit brown cover with greaseproof and turn the oven down

8) Cool the cake in the cake tin for at least 10 minutes before turning it out onto a cooling rack
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9) When the cake is cool you can start the cream cheese icing- mix the cream cheese and butter together in a bowl. Sieve in the icing sugar and mix together, then add the vanilla and slowly add the lemon juice to taste. Don't panic the mixture may be a bit sloppy just add more icing sugar and put it in the fridge for a bit. Then ice the cake - It may not look that great but it will taste it and the icing does set a bit in an hour or so.
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10) Enjoy :)

Hints and Tips

* Both the cake and icing can be adjusted to taste, more or less cinnamon and vanilla in the cake, and more or less vanilla and lemon in the icing - experiment!
* The original recipe says walnuts but they can be a bit bitter so I use pecans which I prefer - you could also use almonds or any other nut you prefer
* The original recipe also uses raisins but you can add whatever dried fruit you prefer - In these pics we used some raisins and some luxury dried fruit mix from Holland & Barrett which contains raisins, cherries, dried pineapple and papaya
* You needn't ice this cake if you don't want to - it's really moist and would also make a good pudding
* You can also double the icing if you really like cream cheese frosting - we often do yum:)
* The cake also freezes really well both iced and plain
* You can also make this into cupcakes or muffins obviously altering the cooking time etc.

Hope this was useful - it is a gorgeous cake which is super rich and moist - in fact I might go and get some out of the freezer now x :)

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Kosmea Eighth Wonder Revitalising Facial Serum - A Review For My Pure

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As you know I was recently sent a package of goodies to review by the lovely people at My Pure. One of the products was the Kosmea Eighth Wonder Revitalising Facial Serum.
Established in Australia in 1993 Kosmea launched the first 100% pure certified organic Rosehip oil and subsequently went on to establish an entire skin care line based on their organic Rosehip oil.
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I must admit I am not the biggest user of serums - I sometimes use one for pore refining or general oil reduction but generally I find that moisturiser is enough for my skin - am I right or am I wrong, should I be using a serum such as this which is suitable for all skin types on a daily basis?- well this product was a new step in my skin care routine. Packaged in an easy to use silver and white pump action dispenser to keep the product air tight, Kosmea claim that this super serum will give "your skin an instant face lift and will increase radiance" Well the ingredients they use certainly suggest this could be the case
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The key ingredient in the all Kosmea range is natural organic Rosehip oil. This has been found to have visible regenerative properties. It's rich in Vitamins A and E, and antioxidents, which can all help in the natural exfoliating of the skin, and an general improvement in skin texture producing smoother, brighter skin and it can even minimise the appearance of fine lines, an all round wonder oil for the skin which increasingly appears in lots of skin care products not only in this range :) This serum also includes Hibiscus extract which has also be proven to minimise the appearance of fine lines and Green Tea which is another noted antioxident, which has been said to safeguard healthy skin and prevent premature ageing, and sun damage.
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Well the history of their ingredients seems to back up their claims but what did I think? Well we'll start at the beginning the packaging was good I love pump action dispensers - they keeps the product airtight which is so important which ingredients as pure as these. The pump action dispenser worked well but I have to say there was a tendency to dispense too much product at once - it has a lotion type texture
which you can see here
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It felt light on the skin and spread easily and absorbed to a pretty matte non-sticky finish
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Kosmea advise you use this product twice a day under moisturiser during the day and on it own at night. I have combination skin, with oily tendencies so I found I didn't actually need to use alongside moisturiser during the day - On my skin I felt provided enough moisture on its own - I like the matte finish it gave to my skin and I felt it made it an ideal base for both liquid and mineral foundations :)
The one issue I think people may possibly have with this serum is the smell - I personally liked it - I've grown up with Rose Geranium plants in my house so I am quite used to the smell - it's a herbal/ floral scent which I think some people could find a bit over powering - it does have a tendency to linger on the skin for some time, so much so that Mummy LouLou asked what I'd been doing with her plants in the conservatory
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What did it do to my skin ?- Well although Kosmea claim this is for all skin types I actually think it would perform better on a drier, more mature skin as oppose to mine which is still prone to oiliness. Despite that I did see a bit of a change in my skin over the fortnight I've been using this - my skin texture seems to have slightly improved, it seems more even and my dry parts aren't quite as dry, and my skin generally seems a little clearer. I'm not a 100% sure it's more radiant though and my annoying fine lines are still there but maybe using it for a bit longer will change that.
I have to say I probably wouldn't buy this again at least at this moment in time - as I say I think it would probably be better suited to a drier or more mature skin, which actually has more ageing and radiance issues. Another thing that would prevent me buying at this moment in time is the price point - this is not a cheap product - obviously down to the quality of the ingredients and so on, it's very much an investment product which focuses on specific problems which aren't really a concern for me at this time. The Kosmea Eighth Wonder Revitalising Facial Serum is available in two sizes the 20ml (which I was sent) is £25 and the 50ml is £49.99 - both are available from My Pure

(As you know I was sent this product by My Pure for review purposes. This hasn't affected my review in any way this is my opinion and mine alone)

Friday, 28 May 2010

Ebay Nail Varnish Haul + A Gift :)

This three post a day thing is becoming a bit of a habit ;) Well post number 3 of today is another nail varnish haul :) I recently ordered a few bits including some of the new OPI Shrek collection from Enchanted Beauty Spot on ebay - as per usual the transaction was flawless and they came this week :)
From Left To Right - China Glaze - Sexy In The City, OPI - Funky Dunkey, OPI - What's With The Cattitude, OPI - Ogre-The-Top Blue and Essie - Sexy Divide
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One of my lovely followers Becky from Style and the City was also kind enough to send my her Sephora by OPI - Metro Chic - huge thank you my lovely x
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I also have another couple of nail polish hauls to come - I've placed another couple of US ebay orders then that will be that - a nail polish ban for the rest of the year :)

I Won - A Giveaway Prize From The Lovely Lenny :)

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I was chuffed to get an email the other day for the lovely Lenny telling me I'd won her giveaway - yeah - please check her out if you haven't already :) The parcel of goodies came yesterday - which was super quick and unsurprisingly enough I was overwhelmed by her generosity :)
The lovely package of goodies contained two rings - including this gorgeous natural amethyst one
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look at the pretty heart detail
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This is officially my favourite ring now - it is gorgeous love,love,love it :)
She also sent me this lovely Primark over sized ring which I've been debating buying for a while :)
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Can you believe she sent me more :) this fabulous little floral cross body bag from New Look which Mummy LouLou has her eye on ;)
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two Barry M nail paints in Mint Green and Blue Glitter
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one of my favourite lip colours ever ELF Luscious Liquid Lipstick in Baby Lips
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a Boots Natural Collection lipstick in Pink Mallow which looks gorgeous
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a GOSH Velvet Touch Eyeliner in 011 Sky High
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and a cute Eeyore card -
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Thank you soo much my lovely I love everything especially the ring (did I say I loved it ;) xxx

Superdrug and Aldi Bits + NOTD

I popped out for a couple of hours with my mum yesterday to get the rest of my besties birthday pressie and as per usual I picked up a few bits for me :)
Firstly Superdrug :) why or why do I buy something every time I go in - everything seems to shout buy me lol. Well I was pretty restrained and only picked up three bits. First of all I noticed that all the True Spirit jewellery was half price so I bought these pretty earring for only 99p (slightly less than half price actually they were originally £1.99 - strange) yes they are bows again - wire bows on a little chain with a crystal at the top
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I also spotted the new Scarlett & Crimson range by Ruby Hammer and Millie Kendall so I decided to try something - I went for the creme eyeshadow trio in The Natural Trio - this is really unusual packaging design the eyeshadows are all packaged separately but they stack together so presumably if you have all the trios
(I spotted at least another 3)you can stack them all together.
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I've just included a few pics here but I will be doing a full review of these shadows and the packaging soon for you so keep checking back x
I also picked up a nail polish by GOSH 546 Rainbow - this is gorgeous and so sparkly with multi coloured glitter in it which can look like gold leaf, green, pink you name it :)
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I've included a few pics of it painted over the top of Eyeko Tea Rose but the pics really don't do it justice - it's gorgeous and look amazing over most colours :)
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We also popped to Aldi which was a bit of a sad experience - a few months ago I did a review of their Lacura Balancing Day Cream (click here to see it) - alas it seems to be no more :( there was no space for it on the shelves and it's no longer on the Aldi site - sniff - if anyone sees one please, please pick one up for me - it was my favourite "cheap" moisturiser :( Never mind I still picked a few bits up from the Lacura range including a pack of the 3 in 1 Facial Cleansing Wipes - these two have changed packaging and you now get more in the pack but thankfully they seem the same
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I also picked one of the eyeshadow duos after a recommendation from the lovely Lauren - I went for 202 Olive - again I've just added a few pics here I will definitely be reviewing this too for you alongside my long promised Lacura lipgloss review x
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I hope you enjoyed yet another haul from me ;) As I say I'll definitely be reviewing some of these items in more detail for you so don't forget to keep checking back Oh and a huge thank you and hello to my new followers xx

Thursday, 27 May 2010

NOTD - Eyeko

For the first time in ages when it came to mid week my nail polish- China Glaze For Audrey was still in pretty good shape but never the less off it came. I replaced it with one of the Eyeko colours I recently purchased. The one I chose was Tea Rose -a real dusky pink shade - this is two coats but I don't think it really needed it

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Avon, Ebay and Blog Sale Hauling x

OK more shopping for moi :) First of all I got my order from my local Avon representative - I must admit I really like Avon they have received a bit of bad press over the years and a bit of a reputation for being a bit naff but I still get a bit excited when the brochure drops through the door - saddo that I am :)
I was pretty restrained with beauty goodies and only ordered a body mist in Perceive - I love the smell of this fresh and floral and great for summer :) My main purchases this time were Hello Kitty related - Maybe I'm a little bit old but never mind I think she's cute :)I got a few Hello Kitty bits last year from Avon, a beach bag, a towel wrap and some flip flops and I was please to see they were doing some new designs for this summer all in the nautical theme - I have no holiday plans yet but this little lot makes me desperate to go away x
First of all I got this cotton jersey beach dress - it has a smocked style top, and adjustable tie straps with little beads on them - this pic isn't the best to be honest but here is is on the Avon website
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the little sailor Hello Kitty on the corner :)
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I also got the matching flip flops with Hello Kitty on the in sole
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Hello Kitty on the straps
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and yes the writing is backwards on the sole but when you wear them it will imprint "Hello Kitty" onto the sand - cute eh!
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and I got the matching beach bag which you can actually reverse to get a red and white polka dot pattern
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look a little cute charm too :)
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I also picked up a couple of little bits from the lovely Lillian's blog sale including this sweet little Union Jack design scarf from Twenty8Twelve
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and this little bow necklace
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very pleased with both - thank you lovely x
I also got this cute little necklace from ebay :) you can't see it too clearly here but it's a little coat hanger and a little stiletto :)
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