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Accessorize Georgia Bag

January 30, 2014
This bag has become my new favourite. I adore it. I adore the price even more - £32! It's quite rare that I buy a new handbag- I tend to use the same one for months and months until they look a bit worse for wear.

It was definitely time to purchase a new one and when I saw this in Accessorize I bought it immediately. It is perfection. It's a really nice size and a tad smaller than the ones I usually go for which I was pleased about as I do tend to just fill them with stuff that I don't really need. There is a zipped pocket inside and two open pockets.

The winged design reminds me of the Michael Kors Selma bags which is why it caught my attention in the shop and it also comes with a similar detachable across-body strap (which I've taken off for now). I've had so many compliments on it and a lot of shock when I tell them the price and where it's from

The Georgia comes in four different colours - I purchased it in navy but you can also buy it in green, purple and pink. I am quite tempted to buy another in the green!

You can view the bag on Accessorize's website here!

Victoria Secret Bombshell Diamonds Eau De Parfum

January 28, 2014

I was in Leeds a couple of weeks ago for a reunion with my lovely Uni friends. I have some of my most favourite times with those girls - although they are terrible enablers. We went shopping in the new Trinity Centre in Leeds which is amazing and we all bought quite a few bits and bobs.

We went into the Victoria Secret store in Trinity and marvelled at all of it's pink goodness. They had a huge sale on and there were some fantastic reductions, especially on the fragrances and gift sets. I was so annoyed that I had to get a train back home as otherwise would have stocked up on gift sets for presents- they were selling for £15 from £75!

After trying out lots of the different scents I decided to buy the Bombshell Diamonds- which is a limited edition version of their classic Bombshell perfume. It is a very girly scent but not overly sweet with the key notes (I'm not sure whether 'notes' is correct but you get what I mean) being vanilla orchid, iced hyacinth and sparkling grapefruit. The bottle is pretty special- it's inspired by the Victoria Secret wings (which on a side note, I'd really like to just have, I'd always wear them) and is sparkly and lovely.

I have a couple of criticisms with the first being that the bow/wings make it quite tricky to spray and it's also not that long lasting. If I'd bought it for the RRP of £48 I would have been a bit disappointed but I got it for £12 in the sale so can't complain at all! 

My Nail Care Regime

January 26, 2014

I thought I'd share a bit of a back-story about my nails today. Since I can remember, I have had a nail biting habit - it's horrible and I'm not proud of it. In the past few years it's become a habit of picking my nails rather than biting them which is just as bad. It tends to be either when I'm bored, or stressed. 

I have tried and tried to stop this habit. From good old Stop N Grow to painting them every day - and the same thing happens. They grow and look lovely, and then start splitting and breaking which completely ruins my motivation and before I know it, they're short again and not looking lovely anymore. The main issue is my weak nails and how prone they are to splitting.

The breakthrough happened because of my Mum (a lot of good things happen because of my Mum, she is the best). She has made friends with her new neighbour, Hannah and Hannah knows a lot about nails. Through trying everything out there and doing friend's nails she has found some really amazing products that truly make a difference. She used these on my Mum and her nails started looking fantastic. So over Christmas my Mum introduced me to all of these amazing products and I got started on my new Nail regime. I don't want to speak too soon as it's only been a month but I think I might have cracked it.

The four products that have made an incredible difference are in the photo above. I think the star has to be the O.P.I Nail Envy - I've got the matte version as this is good as a base. You simply apply two coats and then either use a nail polish over or leave it as it is. If you just use it on it's own you can then apply it every other day for a week before removing it, however I've mostly been using it as a base coat. The formula basically works to strengthen your nails and to stop them breaking. My Mum gave me the Nail Envy but you can buy it from lots of places including a nice little duo from QVC for £17.

Alongside this, I've been using the O.P.I Avoplex Nail & Cuticle Replenishing Oil and the O.P.I Avoplex Cuticle Oil To Go. Cuticle oils are my new love- I've become a bit obsessed with using them. You just brush a bit onto each nail and massage in- it's really important to moisturise your cuticles as it helps to strengthen the nail bed, encourage growth and to soften the cuticle. I used to suffer from dry skin around my nails which led to the skin cracking and this has also helped a lot with that. I use the Replenising Oil every evening and the Cuticle Oil To Go on the train to work while I peruse the Metro. Another very important point is that the Avoplex stuff smells incredible! I bought these two products as part of a set from QVC (their website is another new obsession of mine) which I'm going to post about soon and you can view that here. You can also buy the Nail Envy and Cuticle Oil in a set for £19.50.

The final product that I've attributed to my nail success is the Leighton Denny Remove and Rectify. I don't use this as often as the other products but it's become a key part of a manicure. It naturally dissolves dry cuticle skin and also moisturises. I guess it's fairly similar to the nail oil so you might not need both but I really like using this. I bought mine from Amazon (not QVC- shocker) for £11.

So those are my top nail products at the moment- they have really changed my nails and I am so happy with them. Not one has broken since using these products, not one! 

There are some other nail/hand care products that I also really rate but I'll leave those for a seperate post.

Do let me know if you also LOVE any of these nail products and if you have any other recommendations.

Love Me Beauty - January 2014 Box

January 24, 2014
Apologies for a bit AWOL lately. The MacBook I use to blog decided to die on me and so I've been without a way to get some posts up!

Without further ado, above are the contents on the January Love Me Beauty Box* - a selection that is very pleasing to the eye! Love Me Beauty is a monthly beauty box where you can subscribe for £10 a month and receive a selection of goodies every month. You can choose from one of three menus which is different to most beauty boxes. 

I choose menu three which includes the following:

NYX Cosmetics Eyeshadow in Sahara (RRP £5) - 'NYX pressed mineral eye shadows are packed with colour, easy to blend and will last for hours'

Cosmetics a la Carte Divine Lash Mascara (RRP £23) - 'Divine Lash has a slim tapered flexible brush, perfect for reaching every lash from corners to bottom lashes. This mascara gives a lovely even coating of mascara upon application'

Anatomicals Rose & Jasmine Body Cleanser (RRP £3) - 'You Need a Blooming Shower cleanser by Anatomicals features a soothing mix of aloe vera and witch hazel with rose and jasmine scents'

Pureology Colour Stylist Silk Bodifier (RRP 15) - 'Pureology Colour Stylist Silk Bodifier infuses hair with volume, shine and softness while protecting and maximising the vibrancy of colour-treated hair.'

Arran Aromatics Apothecary Wheatgerm and Vitamin E Soap (RRP £2.75) - 'Exfoliate and polish with this Wheatgerm and Vitamin E Soap. It contains natural oatmeal to give your skin a gentle wake up call and cleanse without drying out skin'

I really like all of the products in this box. I have been most excited by the Pureology product as Pureology is my new hair love. I bought their hydrating shampoo and conditioner recently and have been amazed by it (will make sure to do a full review soon!) so was really happy to see this in the box. I've used it once and it definitely gave my hair oomph- although I do find applying mousse really tricky!

The mascara is pretty good- which you'd hope for a £23 RRP. It leaves lashes long, defined and seperated which is great for daytime. I do prefer volumising mascaras but this one makes a nice change. The Arran Aromatics soap was a real treat to get in the beauty box - I don't often buy soap and forget how much I like it. 

The NYX eyeshadow is nice and pigmented, although isn't as smooth to apply as other eyeshadows (like MAC) - I actually quite like to use this as a highlighter! And finally, the Anatomicals Body Cleanser which I am yet to try. I do really like Anatomicals though- I've been using their hand cream at work and everyone keeps trying it. I've even bought some for the girl who sits next to me as she loves it so much!

Overall a pretty good box from Love Me Beauty. You can subscribe for yourself here.

L'Oreal Paris Studio Line #TXT Products

January 06, 2014

Meet two new products from the L'Oreal Paris #TXT range - their Volume Supersizing Spray* and their Wave Creating Spray*. 

The StudioLine #TXT Volume Supersizing Spray aims to create textured hair with no stiffness. Formulated with texturising micro-powders the spray instantly creates big volume in just a few seconds. The style advice from L'Oreal is to divide dry hair into an upper and lower section and then to spray each section generously and scrunch hair. You can continue to spray until it's as big as you like! 

I tried this over Christmas and LOVE it. It gives such good volume to hair and makes it really texturised- it can be used when your hair is down, or if you want to create a messy up-do (especially straight after you've washed it when it can be hard to work with). The best bit is the price- it's only £3.79 from Boots which is such a bargain for such a brilliant product. It does make hair feel a bit tacky but that's the only negative. 

The StudioLine #TXT Wave Creating Spray has the same texturising micro-powders as the volume spray but this product is used to create waves on straight hair and is also formulated to protect against heat. I followed the advice from L'Oreal which was to spray product generously over damp hair and then to half blow dry. I then twisted hair into two topknot buns and blow dried for a bit longer before letting out the buns and blow drying my hair upside down while scrunching upwards.

It was a bit of a faff if I'm honest and I wasn't very impressed with the results. There may be a better way to use this spray but it just left my hair a little lank and like it needed another wash! If you have tried this and have had better results do let me know! This spray costs £3.79 from Boots.

Hello 2014

January 04, 2014

So it's hello to a brand new and shiny year. I love the feeling of a new start and a new 365 days to make the most of.

2013 has been a good year, with a lot of change. Chris and I started the year in London but moved back to my parents in March to save up for a house deposit. My parents then decided to relocate to Lincolnshire to be nearer family and for a lifestyle change. They had an offer accepted on a beautiful converted barn so Chris and I were suddenly on a deadline to get a place for ourselves (we didn't want to go back to renting). We ended up moving into our London flat a week after Mum and Dad moved into their new house- talk about a stressful time! Buying a flat has been such an achievement and I feel a lot more content now that we have our own four walls.

Buying a flat meant a lot of the year has been a bit in limbo however we enjoyed a holiday to Florida in April, plenty of BBQs in the old house and quite a few weddings! I also got a promotion at work which was very gladly received!

2014 should be more of a settled year. We have another Florida holiday lined up for May (that places just draws you in again and again) and want to make lots of changes to our flat as it is in need of some work. Hopefully by the end of the year we'll be enjoying a brand new kitchen and rooms that are far more to our taste. I also want to make sure I keep up with my blog as I really do enjoy it, and to finally sort out my nail biting habit. My Mum has given me a great nail regime to get them stronger and to stop them breaking so I'll probably do a post about this soon.

Here's to 2014!

A little YSL treat

January 02, 2014

Happy New Year! I thought I'd start 2014 with a couple of cheeky products from YSL. I think YSL win the award for best packaging- I just adore it and a couple of weeks ago I treated myself to two products from the brand - an early Christmas present to myself.

The YSL Golden Gloss in shade 30 is a gorgeous shimmering coral lip gloss with gold flecks. It's not as orange as in the photograph and is far more subtle on the lips. I tend not to wear lip gloss in the winter (wind, rain, hair and lip gloss are not a good combo) but this is going to be used a lot when the weather starts getting warmer! It has a nice scent and doesn't leave lips sticky.

The YSL La Laque Couture in 48 Rose Scabiosa (not a fan of the name!) is the most perfect bubblegum pink nail polish. It's a really good quality product and you could get away with wearing one coat on your nails. It's easy to apply and dries quickly. Love it. Especially love how lovely it looks in my collection!

Which YSL products have you tried?