Saturday, 15 September 2018

Trimming My Stash - August 2018 Edition - Empties And Mini Reviews

So should I apologise again for the lateness of a blog post or should I just get on with it? You decide! Well you don't I do and I'm going to offer a fleeting but non specific apology - things happen, life gets in the way and all that jazz. I've had another pretty up and down few weeks but I'm still here, I'm still shopping and I'm still desperately trying to finish a few beauty products along the way.

Courreges La Fille De' L Air Eau De Parfum - 8.5ml
Scrub Love Hydrating Coconut Oil Body Scrub - Coconut Cranberry - 100g
Superdrug Naturally Radiant Glycolic Toner - 100ml
My Little Beauty Coco Sunrise Hair And Body Oil - 75ml
Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub - 300ml
Bomb Cosmetics Mandarin & Orange Cleansing Shower Butter - 320g
Total - 6 Items 

August was a much better month than July, I managed to finish 6 items, including a few long time favourites and a few beauty box items, although I didn't manage to add any make up items to my August I did manage to finish a fragrance, and some skin and body care products, all in all not a bad month empties wise!

1. Courreges La Fille De' L Air Eau De Parfum - 8.5ml

If you follow any of my other social media channels or if you're a regular watcher of my You Tube unboxing videos, then you'll know that I love fragrance but like most people I'm not always a fan of random perfumes in beauty boxes. Scent is such a personal thing that it can be really hard to give a 100 or so people the same fragrance and for them all to love it, but it really can give you the chance to try something new, and every now and then, you hit the jackpot. When I received this in a My Little Box, well over a year ago now I was hesitant but it really was love at first sniff! 

This fragrance from iconic French designer brand Courreges is the perfect scent for summer. It's a perfect combination of citrus and floral, and contains bergamot, neroli, orange blossom, musk, ozone scents and rubber! Yeah ignore the concept of the rubber that's just weird, instead embrace the white flowers and the orange blossom and you'll be transported to the Mediterranean before you know it, quite literally as it turns it, the name actually translates to The Girl In The Air, and for a while when it was first released in 2015, it was an Air France exclusive. Thankfully now it's readily available worldwide, well apart from in the UK that is! For some reason Courreges don't officially retail their scents in the UK so this is definitely something to try if your heading to sunnier or not so sunnier climes in the near future. If you're like me though and you have no exotic jaunts planned than you could always try reseller sites such as ebay and Amazon, I've had a look today and this fragrance is still available from both UK and European sellers. Thankfully I have a couple of bottles to keep me going, when I first talked about this scent, and about how much that I loved it, the lovely team at My Little Box, very kindly sent me another purse spray free of charge, and this year my lovely mummy managed to get her hands on a full size bottle that she gave me for my birthday. I love a lot of different fragrances but this is definitely now one of my go to's. 

2. Scrub Love Hydrating Coconut Oil Body Scrub - Coconut Cranberry - 100g

Ah the last of my Scrub Love sachets, and Mummy Lou breathes, well a sigh of relief. Don't get me wrong I do like these an awful lot it's just that they are so messy! This one though was way, way better than the Charcoal one that I talked about last month (read my post here if you haven't already). The texture and the scent was way better and this one was a little bit more like some of the other Scrub Love products that I'd tried. With a fruit, slight coconut scent, this one was much squidgier, and a result much, much easier to apply and use. Containing ground coconut shells and flakes, as well as coconut oil, vitamin E, and cranberry seed oil, this one had a decent scrubby texture, and whilst it wasn't any wear near or scratchy as the charcoal variant it still did the job, and thanks all of the natural oils (which also helped hold it together) it felt slightly oily on the the skin. It rinsed off fairly easily in the shower, and the skin was left feeling both smooth and hydrated. Like all of the other scrubs that I've tried from this brand it did leave a bit of gunk in the bottom of the shower, so whilst this product maybe isn't for my mam or clean freaks, if you're looking for a natural scrub with no nasties or micro beads, and that's full biodegradable then this range could be something worth trying. I personally would be happy to use some of these again but I don't wish to incur the wraith of Mummy Lou so all I can do is hope that they pop up in another subscription box sometime soon.

3. Superdrug Naturally Radiant Glycolic Toner - 100ml

Now if you've spent as long online as I have then you might have already seen a lot of buzz and hype about this purse friendly skincare product range from Superdrug, with many people hailing as a fabulous budget alternative to products such as Alpha H Liquid Gold, PIXI Glow Tonic, and NIP + FAB's Glycolic range.

Containing kiwi and mulberry extracts, AHA's and Glycolic Acid, this product is designed to even out the complexion, refine pores, smooth out fine lines, fade pigmentation, clear dead skin, and add radiance to the compexion.

Simply use it as you would any other toner, apply it to a cotton pad and then wipe it over the skin. You can use this toner both morning and night, but I prefer to use it at night, and to let it do it's thing whilst I sleep. Immediately after application it starts to feel as though it's doing something, and my skin starts to feel slightly warm and tingly. I've been using this for over a month now, alongside another product from the same range, and my skin definitely feels smoother, and looks brighter and clearer, I also noticed that those annoying hormonal breakouts on my chin cleared up more quickly whilst I was using this product.

This stuff is good, and it's definitely something that I intend to buy again, the only bad thing for me (other than remembering to wear SPF - I know, I know - slaps wrists), is the smell. It has a very green, woody, herbal scent that reminds me a bit of aftershave! Never mind I guess I can live the scent of a hunky man purely for the results that I've had from this little bottle of magic. It normally retails at £5.99 for 100ml bottle but Superdrug nearly always has some sort of offer on this range, the current offer is buy one get one free so it's well worth trying.

4. My Little Beauty Coco Sunrise Hair And Body Oil - 75ml

Another product from the now defunct My Little Box UK, and it one of the products from their own line that was sadly never available to buy separately in the UK. 

Thanks to too much Malibu once upon a time I have a love / hate relationship with coconut. I really can appreciate the yumminess of the scent but sometimes it can be a little bit too much for me. I can usually deal with a little bit though and this product was both within my limits and perfect for the summer months.

This was basically a multi purpose oil both containing and smelling of coconut. I do love an oil and I mainly used this oil in two ways, on my hair as both a pre-wash treatment, and a styling product to tone down the frizz and add shine, and as a body oil to add extra nourishment to drier areas and to help treat some stretchmarks. It was a nice easy to apply oil, that absorbed pretty quickly and it made an instant difference hydration wise to both the skin and the hair. 

5. Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub - 300ml

I love, love, love this stuff, it's one of my most used and repurchased body scrubs and it's something that I will continue to use and repurchase. As the name would suggest it's a gritty brown sugar based scrub, with just a touch of sea salt and macadamia grains, with add sweet lime oil, to give it its zesty citrus scent, and added almond oil, and glycerin for hydration.

Sugar and salt scrubs are without a doubt my favourite kind, apply a small amount (a little goes a long way)  to damp skin and you get a decent friction scrub with none of the mess. The oil content also gives the skin a nice moisture boost, and the scent is a real mood booster, honestly what's not to love.

6. Bomb Cosmetics Mandarin & Orange Cleansing Shower Butter - 320g

Now Bomb Cosmetics definitely don't get as much publicity as Lush does but there products are equally fun and quirky - no they don't just make bath bombs, they also make everything from candles, to soaps, to hair masks and shower butters!

Shower butters I hear you cry, what is a shower butter? well shower butters are probably my favourite product from Bomb Cosmetics, Think tubs of squidgy butter, that foams up equally well in the bath or the shower. Simply scoop a small amount and pop it under running water or onto a shower scrunchie and it lathers up like a dream.

Crammed full of nourishing shea butter, this mandarin orange scented citrus fabulousness has been a mainstay in my bathroom for a few years now. It's such an economical product you only needs a tiny little bit so you £7.99 investment goes a long way. They are also super easy to use, they feel gentle on the skin and this one in particular smells amazing.

The name and the packaging seems to have changed now to just Mandarin Shower Butter but I'm hoping that the product inside is still the same. Since I don't have easy access to a bath tub now I'm always on the lookout for fun and different shower products and these fit the bill perfectly. I'll definitely be picking up another tub in the near future, and I'm also fancying trying one of the scents maybe Blackcurrant hmm decisions, decisions!

So they were my August empties, I've already finished a few bits already in September so fingers crossed that I'll do even better this month x Let me know if you have any questions on any of the items that I finished and I'll do my best to get back to you x 

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

A Late August 2018 Primark Haul - Clothes, Accessories And Beauty

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I honestly don't know where this year has gone, it seems to have flown by so fast that I don't seem to have been able to do anything, go anywhere or achieve anything. Please tell me I'm not alone in feeling this way or is this just middle age and life catching up with me? - who knows! Like most things this year Primark trips have been pretty thin on the ground, my last visit was in May so a little shopping trip was well overdue! It's always the way though isn't it, you don't go somewhere for ages and then you end up going three times in 4 weeks! a bit like buses I guess, but you what that means, it means that I have a couple of Primark hauls coming up for you in the next week or so, first up the goodies I picked up on two trips in August x

Last time I was in Primark way back in May, it was all about summer style, with shorts, vest tops , bikinis and sandals as far as the eye could see, this time round though the sale rails were clinging on to summer whilst the rest of the store, was bedecked in Autumn and Winter colours and styles.

Something that seems to be back big style for A/W 2018 is checks and tartan, I love a checked shirt on a guy but I'm also partial to a little bit of plaid in my own wardrobe. I've always loved tartan and checks for as long as I can remember; I remember having a couple of dresses in tartan as both a child and an adult, and I remember owning the most fabulous bright blue tartan mini skirt from C&A, it probably wouldn't fit me know but I wish I'd held on to it.

This top is probably a little bit more practical than my long lost skirt, and at just £5 it was a must have. It's basically a fine knit type fabric tunic, it has a slightly boxy bat wing shape, and a visible back zip.

Primark have apparently improved their sizing on a lot of their items, and this was one of a few items that I saw that was available in a 2XL, which they claim should fit a 22-24. Still not trusting Primark's sizing and always going for the largest size, this was the size that I went for, but to be honest I should have gone a size down because on me it's pretty roomy. Despite the fact that it's pretty lightweight it's still pretty cosy but since I do have a bit of extra room in it, and because it has 3/4 sleeves, I could wear it on top of either a long sleeved t-shirt or a black polo or roll neck for a bit of extra warmth on those colder days.

Although the store was full of Autumn and Winter bits, there were still a few basics and things that I think you could wear all year round. I love florals,  be it ditsy, gaudy, or even vintage, if there is a flower on something that you can pretty much guarantee that I'll like it. I'm also a huge fan or shirts and blouses so team either of those with a floral print, and I'll be there in a flash.

I couldn't resist this long line tie detail shirt, in a slightly sheer chiffon / gauze fabric, this off white shirt features a vintage style blush floral rose pattern. It only buttons half way down leaving you free to wear it loose or to knot it at the front.

It was only £12 and I loved it so much that I went back and picked up the same shirt but in a different colour and print. This one is in a beautiful deep teal, with a slightly different but equally big and blousey vintage floral print in shades of blue, blue, and beige.

Again it was only £12 and again you can wear it in several different ways. Being so sheer I probably will need to wear a vest or a t-shirt underneath but you could wear it unbuttoned as a kind of a jacket, tied, or even loose with the buttons fastened, giving it an almost slit detail look.

There seems to be a lot of this teal / petrol shade around at the moment and I also ended up buying one of my favourite long line t-shirts in this fab deep petrol shade.

I've talked about these Primark t-shirts on many occasions now and they are a real staple for me, this one was just £3.50 and again it's perfect on it's own and perfect for layering as the weather gets colder. I'm also a huge fan of their long sleeved t-shirts so I picked up this navy blue and red stripe crew neck t-shirt shirt for £4.00.

Although the long sleeved t-shirts aren't marked as being long line, on me the length is pretty decent, and because of the elastane content they skim my curves and they don't tend to ride up. If you want a bit more length though you could maybe size up a bit but I'm both long in the body and curvy and they're fine on me.

Apart for a pair of leggings, and a pair of my Primark wardrobe staple indigo jeggings, that was it for clothing, but I did go slightly mad in the hair accessories, does anyone really need 45 different hair bobbles, well I do! I honestly don't know where they go! Like so many things Primark have been playing around with their sizing on their hair bobbles, and I picked up a pack of their snag less 30 Standard Hair Elastics which were £1.50. I haven't tried these yet but on reflection I should have gone for the ones for thicker hair we'll see though and I'll know either way for next time. I also got a pack of 12 of the rubber / plastic Spiral Hair Ties in various shades of brown for just £1. Again I love the fact that these don't catch, snag or damage the hair, they also hold their shape pretty well, just keep them away from four legged felines if you want them to last though ;)

Now, as someone who grew up in the 80's and 90's I have many stories about the humble hair scrunchie, be it my scrunchie collection and when it became a bit of a competition as to how many you could wear in your hair at once! I'm not entirely sure that I want to go back there but scrunchies are immensely practical especially if like me, you tie your hair back for bed. They're soft, they don't catch the hair, and you can't feel them digging into your scalp! I have a few floating round that I still use but since they seem to be on trend again I thought I'd stock up with this pack of 3 black scrunchies which just a £1. I'm not sure I'll wear them out of the house, I think I'm over that but I'll definitely wear them for bed.

Next up beauty, and despite seeing a few things online that I liked the look of when I got into store I didn't desperately need or want anything, so I just ended up buying some face wipes and a lipstick.

Okay I didn't need a lipstick but for just 90p and since Primarks beauty range is now cruelty free, it would have been wrong not to have popped this PS Lustre Lipstick in Skin On Skin into my basket

In almost self coloured MAC esq packaging, the lipstick is in a lovely pink / nude colour, it has a coconut taste and scent, and feels very moisturising on the lips. The pigmentation is excellent and it has a nice sheen to it - overall well worth 90p and maybe even more!

Now I also mentioned that I picked up some face wipes, I have used Primark's tea tree face wipes for what seems like forever, I've gone through so many packets that I've lost count. I use them for all sorts of things and when I don't have them I panic! Since I hadn't been to Primark for around 3 months understandably I'd ran out and I thought if I just picked up some generic tea tree based face wipes from B&M that they would be the same, believe me they weren't and they made me realise just how good the Primark ones were, you can therefore imagine my horror when I couldn't find the ones that I usually buy - instead all I could find were these.

They were the same price and you got the same amount of wipes, and the ingredients looked similar so I hoped upon hope, that it was just a name and packaging change, and thankfully that's exactly what seems to have happened, they look, smell and feel exactly the same as they always use to - Phew!!! breathes a huge sigh of relief!

The eagle eyed and loyal LouLouLand and LouLou699 followers amongst may have already seen this but last week I posted a little video to accompany this blog post, you can find out a little bit more about the items that I've showed you here (bar one of the t-shirts that I forget to film eek) and hear more about a couple of things that I haven't talked about in this post. You can watch it below or via this link.

As I say I've got another Primark haul coming for you in the next week or so but in the meantime if you're a fan of hauls don't forget to follow me on Instagram (I'm @LouLou699 ) I've recently posted a TK Maxx haul on my stories featuring a few Illamasqua bits. If you've missed seeing that in my storeies though you can always check out my Instahaul highlights tab to see all of the purchases that I've shared on my stories over the last few months x I love reading and watching other peoples haul post so don't forget to link me up in the comments and of course please let me know if you have any questions on anything that I've bought x

Saturday, 11 August 2018

Trimming My Stash - July 2018 Edition - Empties And Mini Reviews, And Life Lately

I'm late again with my monthly empties post but at the moment that just seems to be the way that my life is going. I makes plans and for whatever reason they just don't come off. Case in point after months of lacking in energy, and umph, over the last week or so I've actually started to feel a little bit more with it, so yesterday me and the mothership planned to make a little trip to Intu Metrocentre. The plan was simple, a short trip with a Primark visit, and a coffee stop, and a quick appointment with Benefit to get my brows waxed. Perfect! then on Thursday night I had a call from Benefit asking me if I could reschedule my brow appointment for next week! It wasn't a major inconvenience so we put the day out on hold until hopefully next Tuesday! They say that things happen for a reason well if that's the case I'd love to know the reasoning behind some of the things that go on in my life, wouldn't we all though! Maybe someone up there or out there knows the potential damage that I want to do in Primark, and they trying to save me some money lol who knows? maybe it's for the best that we don't know the grand plan, or the meaning of life though haha.

I don't if you're really that interested in my life but believe me this post needs a bit of padding out. Last months trimming my stash was to put it mildly a bit of a fail and I haven't really got that much to talk about!

Primark PS Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes For Oily & Blemish Prone Skin - 25 x Wipes
AVON Advance Technique Anti Hair Fall Shampoo - 250ml
Beautifully Scrumptious - Deep Moisturising Foot Pack - Honey & Almond - 1 x Pair Socks

Total - 3 Items

Yeah... I only managed to finish 3 items and two of those items were things that I've talked about at length in several previous post, what can I say apart from that 3 is better than none and from a budget friendly angle every item that I finished was less than £2! I promise I'll try harder in August but first of all lets take a closer look at the 3 products that I did manage to finish x 

1. Primark PS Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes For Oily & Blemish Prone Skin - 25 x Wipes

Yawn! I have no idea how many of these packets have ended up in my monthly empties posts over the years but they are a real constant in my beauty routine. I don't use them on my face that often (facial wipes are bad don't you know ;) but I do use them for all sorts of things including sticky hands, cleaning up swatches, and general freshening up. They are full of tea tree so they have a bit of an antibacterial effect so I often have a packet inside my handbag alongside my hand sanitiser. I always stock up when I go into Primark but since I haven't been in store since May, I've now ran out! I'm hoping I'll be able to stock up when (or if!) I go in next week but in the meantime I'm trying out some Tea Tree and Peppermint facial wipes that I picked up in another one of my favourite stores, B&M.

2. AVON Advance Technique Anti Hair Fall Shampoo - 250ml

I've talked about this product and the corresponding conditioner a few times already both on the blog and on my Instagram, and I have to say that I think this product is amazing. Not only is it really affordable at around £1.70 for a 250ml, but it's also really good and it smells lovely. Anti-Fall is a pretty big claim, and whilst I'm still losing probably more hair than the average person, my hair definitely looks fuller, and thicker, and it feels healthier, and in much better conditioner then it did before I started using this product. I'm using a couple of other shampoos now but I do like to switch it up a bit so I've already bought the 400ml Super size which appears every now and then in the brochures. I really like both the shampoo and the conditioner in this line and it's something that I'm going to continue to repurchase. 

3. Beautifully Scrumptious - Deep Moisturising Foot Pack - Honey & Almond - 1 x Pair Socks

Ah we've reached the final item already and it's probably the most interesting one because it's something that I haven't talked about before. Admittedly I've mentioned the tea tree and peppermint variant but until last month I'd never tried these honey and almond moisturising socks. I'm not sure whether or not that I've mentioned this before but I don't like honey! It's weird I love sweet things, I have a ridiculously sweet tooth, and I can eat things that most other people would find too sweet but honey nah not for me. I think it's more about that smell than the taste for me I just don't like how it smells, I know it's good for you and it's an excellent addition to your body and skincare routine but I just don't like it. Thankfully in the majority of beauty lines it seems to be masked by the addition of a few floral notes, but throw in the fact that I don't like the smell of bitter almond, and these Poundland moisture socks were a bit of a risky buy. Thankfully though they had a pleasant warm, sweet, slightly floral scent that reminded me a bit of whiskey! Odd I know but way better than out and out honey and marzipan! The idea is the same as the tea tree socks, a pair of plastic / paper / fabric socks that are infused with moisturising ingredients - pop them onto clean dry feet for 20 minutes or so and your feet look better and feel instantly smoother and more hydrated. I prefer the freshness of the tea tree and peppermint socks but these are a good alternative and for just £1 a pair they are perfect for dry foot emergencies. 

So short and sweet, but I still managed to ramble for a few minutes longer than this post should have taken, never mind hah ha! Let me know if you have any questions on any of the 3 items that I've talked about in the post or even if you have any random life questions and I'll do my best to respond x Thanks for reading x 

Saturday, 4 August 2018

Nails Of The Day - Milani 3D Holographic Nail Lacquer - 509 HD - Reshot And Rewritten

I've got an admission to make guys, I'm a hypocrite! I'm always going on about how much I love the sun and the warm weather but I'm going to have to be honest, hold my hands up and say that I've just about had my fill of summer 2018. We just aren't used to the heat in the UK! Okay we haven't had some of the scary temperatures that they've had in mainland Europe but when it's constant like it has been lately, it's not normal for us and we just can't deal with it. My energy levels are at rock bottom and all I want to do is nap, admittedly I'm in a lot less pain than usual but even the tiniest little thing is stealing ever single spoon from my virtual drawer! Thankfully a month or so ago I had enough cutlery to be able to paint my nails, and shoot a few pictures for the blog; Since then though my hands and nails have gone steadily down hill but at least I have these pictures to remind me of just how nice my nails and hands can look, when they are a little less heat ravaged and dehydrated.

If you're a long time reader then you may have originally spotted a version of this post way back in 2010. Thanks to the Photobucket fiasco the original photos disappeared, and since I loved this polish so much I decided to dig it out again and re shoot it for you. The polish in question is one of the beautiful and unfortunately now discontinued Milani 3D Holographic Nail Lacquers in the shade 509 HD, which is a gorgeous, full on, holographic silver.

Packaged in a slightly retro looking bottle, these Milani polishes have quite a thin brush but they are really easy to paint with especially if you have smaller or thinner nails. I'm not going to lie to you this one needs a bit of effort but it's well worth it. The first coat gives a pretty, insipid, sheer wash of colour, but it dries quickly, and you just need to keep at it, the formula is a bit thin but it's buildable, and with just the 3 coats that you can see here, you can achieve a fabulous smooth, and glossy full coverage finish.

At first glance this polish maybe isn't quite as vibrant as some of the other holographic formulations on the market, but believe me it all depends on the light. The two pictures that you can see above are taken in natural light on a slightly dull day, and the result is a slightly subdued silver glitter, pretty but nothing special, play around with the lighting though and this polish literally explodes into life! Move you hands about and add a little bit of extra light with either bright sunlight, artificial lighting or even with a camera flash like I have here and then the magic really happens!

Get your movement and your lighting right, and you have hands that you can't stop staring at. Every movement or flash of the light results in the most amazing 3 dimensional colour explosion. The effect is amazing and although it takes a little bit longer to achieve than with some holographic polishes, it's well worth the effort. The wear time is also pretty decent which is not only unusual for a polish in the holo formulation but it's also pretty amazing when you consider that this particular bottle of nail polish is now over 8 years old, and it's as good now as it ever was!

As I say I originally bought this polish way back in 2010, and unfortunately like so many things in the Milani range that I've loved over the years, it appears to have been discontinued so it's now pretty unlikely that you'll be able to get your hands on a bottle of Milani HD :( Holographic nail polishes thankfully now though are a lot easier to get your hands on than they used to be. I'm a huge, huge fan of holographic nail polishes, and I'm always on the look for new ones. I've picked up a few recently from the Mark brand at AVON, and I've also got a few new shades from Born Pretty to try and a lovely blue shade from Maggie Anne to try (Check out my Instagram to see some sneaky peeks). There are now loads of brands out there that offer holographic finishes and formulations, and whilst they can sometimes take a little bit of tracking down, if you want eye catching and show stopping nails then they really are a must have! It's going to be a little while before I can try out any of my new colours, but in the meantime if you have any holographic nail polish recommendations I'd love to hear them, my nails may be non existent but I'm always up for buying new polishes so let me know your faves x

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Trimming My Stash - June 2018 Edition - Empties, Mini Reviews, And Life Lately

We're now more than half way through 2018, and if I'm honest I can't wait for it to be over. I seem to be saying this a lot lately but the last few weeks have been pretty rubbish again. More health issues for both me and my mam, a few MH issues for me, and a poorly kitty means that I'm struggling on a lot of fronts at the moment.

As per usual my blog and my social media presence has suffered although I've managed to upload a few You Tube videos, I've missed a couple of events lately, and my blog especially has been a little bit quiet. I can't guarantee that is going to change in the very near future but I'm going to try a little bit harder to make time for you guys x I have a pile of unboxing videos to do, and I've started photographing a few bits for some up and coming posts so fingers crossed you might be seeing me a  bit more regularly in your subscription feeds. First up though lets take a little look back at all of my beauty empties from June!

Scrub Love Detoxifying Activated Charcoal Body Scrub - Cucumber And Bamboo - 100g

Primark PS Cuticle Oil - 10ml
Philosophy The Gingerbread Man Foaming Bubble Bath And Shower Gel - 480ml
The Body Shop Dewberry Bath And Shower Gel - 250ml

Total - 4 Items 

Not my best performance I'm afraid with just four items, but I did manage to tackle some of the many half full bottles that are littering my shower cubicle, including a real blast from the past, and I also managed to finish one of the worst / best products that I've used x 

1. Scrub Love Detoxifying Activated Charcoal Body Scrub - Cucumber And Bamboo - 100g

Is it possible to love and hate a product in equal measure? Well after trying this body scrub I think it is! I've tried a few products from Scrub Love now and whilst I love the concept I've had more misses than hits so far. I generally love the scrubiness and the textures but my biggest issue with them is that they can be very messy. I'm going to be honest with you though, the mess that every other Scrub Love scrub that I've tried, combined, pales into comparison with this one!

Think traditional body scrub and you'd be way off the mark, in reality this pouch contains a faintly but slightly strange scented, slightly damp, fine grit. I really can't gloss this up at all that exactly what it looks like, black dirt or grit, that literally went everywhere, it covered the floor of the shower, and it clogged up the shower drain. It literally looked like someone had been to B&Q bought a bag of black sand or grit and thrown it on the shower floor! To say my mam wasn't pleased was an understatement and she banned me from ever buying it again!! (I actually got it in a beauty box so I didn't technically pick it out myself in the first place, that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!).

Eek! Fair enough I guess but the annoying thing is that despite the mess, and the slightly strange but thankfully faint scent, I actually loved how this product made my skin feel. I literally massaged clumps of it into the damp skin on my knees, elbows, bum and thighs, and the result was one of the most grittiest and most thorough scrubs that I'd ever used. It rinsed off fairly easily (much easier than it was to clean out of the shower anyway!) and it literally left my skin feeling like silk, velvet, kittens ears, and anything else that you can think of that is super soft. My skin felt smooth, clear, clean and alive!

This scrub certainly did what it promised. This scrub would be perfect ahead of fake tanning, a body treatment or when you need your skin to feel soft, and touchable, and to look amazing. For some people this scrub would be a bit too scrubby, and obviously there is the mess factor, but if you can handle that this scrub really does deliver.

2. Primark PS Cuticle Oil - 10ml

There isn't a lot else that I can say about this really that I haven't already said apart from for only £1 a bottle this stuff in my opinion can't be beaten! I don't know whether it's down to the amazing weather that we've had over the last few weeks but my nails have gone to hell, thankfully I have several more bottles of this wonder liquid on the go so hopefully it shouldn't be too long before they're strong, hydrated and paintable again.

3. Philosophy The Gingerbread Man Foaming Bubble Bath And Shower Gel - 480ml

This used to be one of festive bath and shower essentials but since I've discovered some of the equally good, more budget friendly dupes from brands like Beauticology, Treacle Moon and I Love.. I haven't shown Philosophy quite as much love as I used to, but if you can afford to splash out a little bit than Philosophy shower gels are pretty damn good!

Philosophy The Gingerbread Man is usually released just in time for  Christmas, and this bottle has been in my shower since around November time. Like all Philosophy shower products it has a rich and creamy texture and it can also be used in the bath. Obviously I used it in the shower and only a tiny amount produces a rich and creamy lather.

I'm sure I've talked about this scent before but don't think ginger root, it doesn't even an out and out ginger biscuit fragrance, the scent is foodie based but its more a warm and spicy combination of ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and baking spice. If you aren't a huge fan of sickly, foodie fragrances though don't let that put you off trying this. It's spicy and warming but not too sweet or sickly. I definitely think that this is a unisex product, and it's also one that I think children would like. When it is available this isn't the cheapest shower product but it's a great one for a family bathroom at Christmas or at quite frankly any other time of the year.

4. The Body Shop Dewberry Bath And Shower Gel - 250ml

Like so many little girls that grew up in the late 1980's and 1990's one of the scents of my childhood, and pre teen to early teenage years was The Body Shop Dewberry. I flirted with some of their other scented like White Musk, Fuzzy Peach and Green Apple but I always came back to my one true love, Dewberry. There was literally nothing like it, and the merest sniff of that sweet, juicy, yet warm and tart scent transports me to days of PE skirts, Head sports bags, and French homework, not always good memories but memories of my past and the things that made me who I am.

It's funny how fragrance can do that, but unfortunately The Body Shop moved on and some time after the heady days of 1990 and 1991 Dewberry disappeared from their shelves before being briefly reintroduced in the early 2010's. I picked up this bottle when it was reintroduced and I'm ashamed to say I've treasured it and eeked it out way longer than the use by date suggested.

Never mind it hasn't changed texture and it still smelled the same so I risked and loved it. In The Body Shop's aloe vera enriched, high foaming yet moisturising formulation, this product was a delight to use and I'd repurchase it again in a heartbeat if I could, now if you'll excuse me I need a minute to yet again mourn this bottles passing - sniff!

Come on The Body Shop please, please bring Dewberry back, you've bought Banana back and I'm sure I'm not the only one that's missing a bit of Dewberry nostalgia! If they don't, if you can recommend any thing that smells the same, I'd love to know, sometimes you just need something to trigger those memories of life when it was a little bit less complicated! As well as Dewberry recommendations don't forget to let me know if you have any other questions or comments on any of the products that I've finished or quite frankly on anything else xx

Monday, 9 July 2018

Personalised Gifts For All Occasions From Personally Presented*

I don't know about you but I love buying presents, in fact I probably enjoy buying things for other people just as much as I enjoy buying things for myself. I think I'm one of those people that just likes making other people happy. There really is nothing better in life than seeing someones face light up when you give them something that they really love. 

I've been told on numerous occasions that I'm a good present buyer but lets face it, buying things for other people isn't always that easy. What are their interests? Will it fit? Will they like it? There are so many things to consider when you're buying someone a gift, that it's not really surprising that some of us end up saving ourselves from a mountain of stress, and going down the money or gift card route. 

I doubt any of us would turn down a gift voucher or some cash, but there is something just a little bit impersonal about it, and whether it's true or not, it sometimes makes you wonder just how much thought they've actually put into you or into your gift. Like all of us I'm often guilty of taking the easy way out especially with people that I don't see that often or know that well, but most of the time I try to really think about what I'm buying, and what my recipient likes and dislikes. It's hard but for special occasions and for those special people in your life it really is worth it when you see their faces and the joy that you've created.

For special people and special occasions I like buying present that people will treasure, and things that they can look at and say "Louise bought me that" I think that's one of the reason why I love personalised presents so much. If you buy somebody a gift with their name on, or their initials, or an important date, not only will they know how much thought that you've put into the gift, but they're also more likely to keep it and cherish it.

Thanks to the internet it's now easier then ever to get your hands on beautiful, fun and unique personalised gifts, thanks to a UK based, family run company, Personally Presented. With over 1000 different gift ideas to choose from on their well designed and easy to navigate website, you're pretty much guaranteed to find the perfect, special present for anybody in your life from your best friend, to your dad, your gran, your brother or even your new baby niece.

With items ranging from mugs, prints, teddy bears, and personalised bottles of champagne, to personalised Beatrix Potter items and books, cuff links and greetings cards, they have something for every occasion including birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, christenings, and even graduation gifts.

As you may know this year I celebrated a big birthday, and I was lucky enough to receive quite a few pieces of jewellery. Jewellery makes a fabulous gift for any occasion, be it a special birthday, as a bridesmaid gift or even as a graduation gift, or as a congratulations on passing your exams gift. Jewellery is always special but even more so when it's personalised, and Personally Presented have a large range of pieces including watches, necklaces and bracelets, to help you mark that special occasion.

The team at Personally Presented recently sent me one of their jewellery pieces to review and I have to say I am so, so happy with the piece that they sent me, the Personalised Heart Friendship Bracelet which retails at £20.49

It comes in a plain, brown craft style box, but you can pay an extra £3.99 to have your item gift wrapped. There are 4 colours to chose from a light almost turquoise blue, pink, grey, and the navy blue that I received. 

The bracelet comprises of a coloured suede / leather cord, with a curved, puffed silver plated heart in the centre, that can be personalised with up to 3 initials, I just went for one, the letter L for Louise! Alongside the heart there are several movable silver plated beads, and an adjustable love knot style fastening tipped again with silver plated beads, which means that this bracelet can fit just about any wrist size.

This is a really nice quality piece, the embossing / etching is nice and neatly done, and this bracelet has a nice weight to it which I wasn't really expecting. It looks fab on it's own but you could also wear it layered up with over friendship style bracelets or even beaded or silver bracelets. The adjust ability means that this bracelet would make a perfect pressie for a young teen with a thin wrist right the way up to someone my age and older with a chunkier wrist. This would be a perfect well done on passing your exams gift, or a great birthday pressie, or even a slightly funkier bridesmaid gift.

Personally Presented really do have a special gift for every occasion, and with a tag line of "Gifts Worth Giving" you're guarantee to find a present that your recipient will cherish, and with free UK postage, an excellent returns police and a personalised customer service experience, with Personally Presented, finding that special present for that special someone couldn't be easier x