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Way back at the end of 2013, I made four resolutions for the New Year. I thought it'd be interesting to look back and see if I'd stuck to them, so here goes!


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New Year's Resolutions 2014 — How Did I Do?

Way back at the end of 2013, I made four resolutions for the New Year. I thought it'd be interesting to look back and see if I'd stuck to them, so here goes!


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These Me & Zena midi rings were a Christmas present from my aunt, and they're too cute not to share!

I love midi rings. Normal rings rarely fit me right — they're either too tight or too loose — whereas midi rings sit comfortably above my knuckles and feel much more secure. I also love how delicate they are. The odd statement necklace aside, I've never really been a fan of large jewellery. On other people, hell yes. On me? Not so much. I'm quite petite, so it can swamp me if I'm not careful.



Me & Zena Birth Stone Midi Rings

Me & Zena Midi Rings

These Me & Zena midi rings were a Christmas present from my aunt, and they're too cute not to share!

I love midi rings. Normal rings rarely fit me right — they're either too tight or too loose — whereas midi rings sit comfortably above my knuckles and feel much more secure. I also love how delicate they are. The odd statement necklace aside, I've never really been a fan of large jewellery. On other people, hell yes. On me? Not so much. I'm quite petite, so it can swamp me if I'm not careful.



Me & Zena Birth Stone Midi Rings

After all the anticipation, Christmas 2014 is nearly here! I'm so excited; we're having a massive family Christmas at my aunt's house, and I swear they've prepared enough food to feed an army. Far from being wasteful, this just mean we won't have to go food shopping until January, and having vol-au-vents for breakfast will suddenly become acceptable, if only for a few days. I never get to eat turkey at any other time of year, so I'll be enjoying all the Christmas sandwiches coming my way too. Here are some other traditions my family and I seem to have.

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Christmas Traditions

After all the anticipation, Christmas 2014 is nearly here! I'm so excited; we're having a massive family Christmas at my aunt's house, and I swear they've prepared enough food to feed an army. Far from being wasteful, this just mean we won't have to go food shopping until January, and having vol-au-vents for breakfast will suddenly become acceptable, if only for a few days. I never get to eat turkey at any other time of year, so I'll be enjoying all the Christmas sandwiches coming my way too. Here are some other traditions my family and I seem to have.

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I mentioned how much I love Sali Hughes' attitude towards beauty and feminism in my post about reading Pretty Honest, and today I'm going to devote an entire post to it.

Sali wrote a piece in November's Glamour called 'Brains. Equality. Lipstick.' and I pretty much agree with everything she says: the idea that if you're interested in beauty then you can't be a feminist is ridiculous.



Femininity Is Not Anti-Feminist
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Beauty and Feminism

I mentioned how much I love Sali Hughes' attitude towards beauty and feminism in my post about reading Pretty Honest, and today I'm going to devote an entire post to it.

Sali wrote a piece in November's Glamour called 'Brains. Equality. Lipstick.' and I pretty much agree with everything she says: the idea that if you're interested in beauty then you can't be a feminist is ridiculous.



Femininity Is Not Anti-Feminist
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I've mentioned what's in my make up bag quite a few times on this blog, but I've never really talked about how I store the rest of my cosmetics. I used to just keep them in the various make up bags I'd collected over the years, but that took up too much room, especially when the time came for me to pack up my life and head off to university. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with all my make up, until I remembered I'd kept the boxes from a couple of Models Own orders, just in case they were useful.

Storing My Eye Make Up

Storing My Make-Up

I've mentioned what's in my make up bag quite a few times on this blog, but I've never really talked about how I store the rest of my cosmetics. I used to just keep them in the various make up bags I'd collected over the years, but that took up too much room, especially when the time came for me to pack up my life and head off to university. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with all my make up, until I remembered I'd kept the boxes from a couple of Models Own orders, just in case they were useful.

Storing My Eye Make Up

Models Own Purple Grey


Models Own Purple Grey is one of those shades that sits quietly in my collection, and is quite often overlooked for something a bit, well, warmer. But it's perfect for the cold winter days and nights we're having at the moment, and I think it's a really interesting colour. Brown in some lights, grey in others, and at other times it's a rather wonderful shade I like to think of as murky purple. Purple Grey really comes into its own at this time of year, and I think it's a great alternative if you want to rock dark nails but are bored of all the black or burgandy polishes that are around during A/W (I love them, I really do, but sometimes it's nice to change it up).

What do you think? Do you own any colours like this? What are your favourite A/W shades that aren't the usual berry colours? Let me know in the comments!

Models Own Nail Polish in Purple Grey

Models Own Purple Grey


Models Own Purple Grey is one of those shades that sits quietly in my collection, and is quite often overlooked for something a bit, well, warmer. But it's perfect for the cold winter days and nights we're having at the moment, and I think it's a really interesting colour. Brown in some lights, grey in others, and at other times it's a rather wonderful shade I like to think of as murky purple. Purple Grey really comes into its own at this time of year, and I think it's a great alternative if you want to rock dark nails but are bored of all the black or burgandy polishes that are around during A/W (I love them, I really do, but sometimes it's nice to change it up).

What do you think? Do you own any colours like this? What are your favourite A/W shades that aren't the usual berry colours? Let me know in the comments!
Cohorted has been around for a while, and although I signed up a fair few months ago I'd never actually made a purchase until now. Quick catch up: products on Cohorted are known as cohorts. The more people choose to join a cohort, the lower the price becomes. You pay whatever the final price was before the cohort closed (they're only open for a certain amount of time). 

I was in need of a new mascara, and ended up paying £9.60 for Urban Decay's Perversion Mascara, which came with a trial sized Subversion Lash Primer. Perversion normally costs £17, and the full-sized Subversion costs £15, so I saved myself quite a bit of money!



Urban Decay Perversion Mascara and Subversion Primer (in Cohorted packaging)
My parcel arrived within a couple of days of being dispatched, and a lot of care had been put into wrapping it up. Top marks, Cohorted!


Shopping With Cohorted: Urban Decay Perversion Mascara and Subversion Lash Primer

Cohorted has been around for a while, and although I signed up a fair few months ago I'd never actually made a purchase until now. Quick catch up: products on Cohorted are known as cohorts. The more people choose to join a cohort, the lower the price becomes. You pay whatever the final price was before the cohort closed (they're only open for a certain amount of time). 

I was in need of a new mascara, and ended up paying £9.60 for Urban Decay's Perversion Mascara, which came with a trial sized Subversion Lash Primer. Perversion normally costs £17, and the full-sized Subversion costs £15, so I saved myself quite a bit of money!



Urban Decay Perversion Mascara and Subversion Primer (in Cohorted packaging)
My parcel arrived within a couple of days of being dispatched, and a lot of care had been put into wrapping it up. Top marks, Cohorted!


You may remember my post about e.l.f. from a few weeks ago, in which I talked about the experience of getting my make up done at their Cardiff store. Fast forward a little bit and I've been having fun using the products I picked up that day.

Elf Mineral Foundation in Porcelain

e.l.f. Mini Haul

You may remember my post about e.l.f. from a few weeks ago, in which I talked about the experience of getting my make up done at their Cardiff store. Fast forward a little bit and I've been having fun using the products I picked up that day.

Elf Mineral Foundation in Porcelain

Today I'll be talking about the book that's got everyone in the beauty world gripped: Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes. I've read recommendation after recommendation, and for very good reason.

In a nutshell, Pretty Honest is a straightforward, no-bullshit beauty guide, covering everything you could possibly want to know. Topics include skincare, foundation, hair removal, red lipstick, hair, gifts, and getting the perfect manicure and pedicure, to name but a few. Seriously, there's something for every single scenario.


Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes

Pretty Honest: The Straight-Talking Beauty Companion by Sali Hughes

Today I'll be talking about the book that's got everyone in the beauty world gripped: Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes. I've read recommendation after recommendation, and for very good reason.

In a nutshell, Pretty Honest is a straightforward, no-bullshit beauty guide, covering everything you could possibly want to know. Topics include skincare, foundation, hair removal, red lipstick, hair, gifts, and getting the perfect manicure and pedicure, to name but a few. Seriously, there's something for every single scenario.


Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes

The product I was most excited about receiving in September's Love Me Beauty box was this Foaming Treatment Mask by Percy & Reed. I've tried several of their hair products in the past, all with good results, so I had high hopes for this one. Luckily, I wasn't disappointed. 

Percy & Reed Lovingly Light Foaming Treatment Mask

Percy & Reed Lovingly Light Foaming Treatment Mask

The product I was most excited about receiving in September's Love Me Beauty box was this Foaming Treatment Mask by Percy & Reed. I've tried several of their hair products in the past, all with good results, so I had high hopes for this one. Luckily, I wasn't disappointed. 

Percy & Reed Lovingly Light Foaming Treatment Mask

Make up products at Elf Store Cardiff

One of the many things I love about living near Cardiff is that the city is home to an e.l.f. store  the first (and, as far as I'm aware, only) e.l.f. store in Europe, in fact  and when they offered to book me in for a makeover* I couldn't refuse.

Everything in the store is set out so you can browse and swatch the products, and I've always found the staff to be very friendly and welcoming, without being pushy. This occasion was no exception ('You're Beth the blogger!')


It's been a long time since anyone has done my make up for me, but Antonia made me feel very relaxed, and asked me what I wanted. Since it's Autumn, I decided on berry lips, and jumped at her suggestion of winged eyeliner to go with it.



A Makeover at e.l.f. Store Cardiff

Make up products at Elf Store Cardiff

One of the many things I love about living near Cardiff is that the city is home to an e.l.f. store  the first (and, as far as I'm aware, only) e.l.f. store in Europe, in fact  and when they offered to book me in for a makeover* I couldn't refuse.

Everything in the store is set out so you can browse and swatch the products, and I've always found the staff to be very friendly and welcoming, without being pushy. This occasion was no exception ('You're Beth the blogger!')


It's been a long time since anyone has done my make up for me, but Antonia made me feel very relaxed, and asked me what I wanted. Since it's Autumn, I decided on berry lips, and jumped at her suggestion of winged eyeliner to go with it.



I always find myself reaching for more make up once autumn arrives  there's something really comforting about it, although I'm not sure why. Possibly because A/W make up is more my thing than S/S? I get way more excited about coppery eyes and berry lips than I do about bronzer. Anyway, I thought I'd share my current routine with you; enjoy!

I've mentioned this before, and I know it's outside the norm, but I always apply my eye make up first. I tend to make mistakes if I'm in a rush, so this way I don't have to start from scratch and do my base again if I mess up.

I start by filling in my brows. Topshop Brow Pencil is a really good cool-toned brown; I use it every day without fail, and although I've had it for six months it's still going strong. I like use my Slanted Brush from The Body Shop to apply a little bit of Seventeen's brow powder for a stronger look, as I think that defined eyebrows really frame the face.


Charlotte Tilbury Eyeshadow Palette in Dolce Vita

In My Make-Up Bag: October 2014

I always find myself reaching for more make up once autumn arrives  there's something really comforting about it, although I'm not sure why. Possibly because A/W make up is more my thing than S/S? I get way more excited about coppery eyes and berry lips than I do about bronzer. Anyway, I thought I'd share my current routine with you; enjoy!

I've mentioned this before, and I know it's outside the norm, but I always apply my eye make up first. I tend to make mistakes if I'm in a rush, so this way I don't have to start from scratch and do my base again if I mess up.

I start by filling in my brows. Topshop Brow Pencil is a really good cool-toned brown; I use it every day without fail, and although I've had it for six months it's still going strong. I like use my Slanted Brush from The Body Shop to apply a little bit of Seventeen's brow powder for a stronger look, as I think that defined eyebrows really frame the face.


Charlotte Tilbury Eyeshadow Palette in Dolce Vita

Over the summer I fell in love with Soap & Glory's Super Tonic Fragrance, so it was only a matter of time before I picked up something else from the Orangeasm range. I opted for the body butter, but I've only been using it for the past couple of weeks, since the weather's turned colder. My house is absolutely freezing, and although it's tempting to jump straight into my pyjamas and onesie straight after a shower (yes, both of them, it's that cold! I wear my onesie over everything) I know my skin will thank me if I take the time to moisturise.

Soap & Glory Orangeasm Super Rich Body Butter



Shopping My Stash: Soap & Glory Orangeasm Super Rich Body Butter

Over the summer I fell in love with Soap & Glory's Super Tonic Fragrance, so it was only a matter of time before I picked up something else from the Orangeasm range. I opted for the body butter, but I've only been using it for the past couple of weeks, since the weather's turned colder. My house is absolutely freezing, and although it's tempting to jump straight into my pyjamas and onesie straight after a shower (yes, both of them, it's that cold! I wear my onesie over everything) I know my skin will thank me if I take the time to moisturise.

Soap & Glory Orangeasm Super Rich Body Butter



I first heard of the idea of a 'beauty number' from Hayley, but originally the idea was discussed on Abigail's blog, after she saw a tweet which stated the average woman uses 12 products a day. I'd be willing to bet that most of you use more than that  I certainly do!  so I thought I'd sit down and work out exactly how many products I use on a daily basis. Ready? Let's go!


What's your beauty number?


Shower
1. Lush Rehab Shampoo
2. John Frieda Full Repair Conditioner
3. Soap & Glory Clean On Me Shower Gel
4. Soap & Glory Orangeasm Body Butter

Morning Skincare
5. Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser
6. Lush Eau Roma Toning Water
7. Yes to Grapefruit Eye Cream
8. Una Brennan Rose Hydrate Day Cream

Deodorant and Fragrance
9. Mitchum Powder Fresh Deodorant
10. Soap & Glory Orangegasm Super Tonic Fragrance Spray

Hair Styling
11. Percy & Reed Wonder Balm
12. John Frieda Heat Defeat Protection Spray
13. Percy & Reed Volumising No Oil Oil For Fine Hair

Make Up
14. Topshop Brow Pencil
15. 17 Brow Kit
16. Bourjois 1 Seconde Volume Mascara
17. Benefit The Porefessional~
18. GOSH CC Cream in Porcelain
19. 17 Stay Time Concealer
20. Soap & Glory Solar Powder
21. The Body Shop All In One Blush in Marshmellow
22. Rodial Stem Cell Superfood Glam Balm Lip
23. Bourjois Shine Edition Lipstick in Beige Democrachic
24. The Body Shop All In One Face Base

Evening Skincare
- Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser
- Lush Eau Roma Toning Water
- Yes to Grapefruit Eye Cream
25. The Body Shop Vitamin E Serum-In-Oil
26. Nature’s Response Tea Tree Oil

Hands and Feet
27. Neal’s Yard Geranium and Orange Hand Cream
28. Soap & Glory Heel Genius Foot Cream

Phew! The OCD part of me is very happy that my beauty number is a nice even 28, but that is a lot of products! I imagined it as a day when I washed my hair, which isn't an everyday occurrence, but the make up was pretty chilled  no eyeliner, or eyeshadow, or lip liner, or anything like that. I didn't expect my total to be quite this high (it's more than double the alleged average) but I don't feel like I should cut down, since everything I use has a specific purpose.

I found this really interesting, and I'd love to know how I compare to other bloggers. If you do work out your beauty number, be sure to let me know!

 Indicates that the product was purchased before I went cruelty free.

What's Your Beauty Number?

I first heard of the idea of a 'beauty number' from Hayley, but originally the idea was discussed on Abigail's blog, after she saw a tweet which stated the average woman uses 12 products a day. I'd be willing to bet that most of you use more than that  I certainly do!  so I thought I'd sit down and work out exactly how many products I use on a daily basis. Ready? Let's go!


What's your beauty number?


Shower
1. Lush Rehab Shampoo
2. John Frieda Full Repair Conditioner
3. Soap & Glory Clean On Me Shower Gel
4. Soap & Glory Orangeasm Body Butter

Morning Skincare
5. Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser
6. Lush Eau Roma Toning Water
7. Yes to Grapefruit Eye Cream
8. Una Brennan Rose Hydrate Day Cream

Deodorant and Fragrance
9. Mitchum Powder Fresh Deodorant
10. Soap & Glory Orangegasm Super Tonic Fragrance Spray

Hair Styling
11. Percy & Reed Wonder Balm
12. John Frieda Heat Defeat Protection Spray
13. Percy & Reed Volumising No Oil Oil For Fine Hair

Make Up
14. Topshop Brow Pencil
15. 17 Brow Kit
16. Bourjois 1 Seconde Volume Mascara
17. Benefit The Porefessional~
18. GOSH CC Cream in Porcelain
19. 17 Stay Time Concealer
20. Soap & Glory Solar Powder
21. The Body Shop All In One Blush in Marshmellow
22. Rodial Stem Cell Superfood Glam Balm Lip
23. Bourjois Shine Edition Lipstick in Beige Democrachic
24. The Body Shop All In One Face Base

Evening Skincare
- Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser
- Lush Eau Roma Toning Water
- Yes to Grapefruit Eye Cream
25. The Body Shop Vitamin E Serum-In-Oil
26. Nature’s Response Tea Tree Oil

Hands and Feet
27. Neal’s Yard Geranium and Orange Hand Cream
28. Soap & Glory Heel Genius Foot Cream

Phew! The OCD part of me is very happy that my beauty number is a nice even 28, but that is a lot of products! I imagined it as a day when I washed my hair, which isn't an everyday occurrence, but the make up was pretty chilled  no eyeliner, or eyeshadow, or lip liner, or anything like that. I didn't expect my total to be quite this high (it's more than double the alleged average) but I don't feel like I should cut down, since everything I use has a specific purpose.

I found this really interesting, and I'd love to know how I compare to other bloggers. If you do work out your beauty number, be sure to let me know!

 Indicates that the product was purchased before I went cruelty free.
Michelle from B.L.M. recently did a lovely post on the products she keeps by her bedside, and encouraged other beauty bloggers to do the same, so I thought I'd share my stash with you. I like to limit the amount of items I have by my bed, otherwise it can get quite cluttered, but there are a few products I like to keep close by.


Bedside Beauty Essentials

Shopping My Stash: Bedside Beauty Essentials

Michelle from B.L.M. recently did a lovely post on the products she keeps by her bedside, and encouraged other beauty bloggers to do the same, so I thought I'd share my stash with you. I like to limit the amount of items I have by my bed, otherwise it can get quite cluttered, but there are a few products I like to keep close by.


Bedside Beauty Essentials

Love Me Beauty Box

Love Me Beauty: September 2014

Love Me Beauty Box

I spend a lot of time browsing Twitter, checking my emails, creepin' on my Facebook friends, reading blog posts and writing comments, and looking for new Instagram accounts to follow. But it wasn't until recently, when I was heading back to uni, that I realised just how much attention I pay to social media, and electronics in general. I was stuck in my Travelodge room with no WiFi (they did have it but it cost extra, and going back to uni is expensive enough already) and, I thought initially, nothing to do.

I've always thought of myself as being pretty balanced when it comes to social media. I refuse to get Facebook on my phone, for example, since it means that once I've left the house I can only be reached via call or text. But lately I've noticed that I've been spending a lot of time staring at one screen or another, and I'm not sure I like it. It used to be that I worried my online presence wasn't great enough; now I worry that by focusing too much on the virtual world I'm missing out on the real one.

Don't get me wrong, social media can be a wonderful thing. I keep in contact with family and friends over Facebook; when I'm scrolling through my Tumblr dashboard I can see a photo that makes me laugh out loud, and then read a thought-provoking post immediately after; the #bbloggers chat is my favourite thing about Twitter.


However, during the short time I had no internet access, I devoured the October issue of Elle, which gave me a load of beauty inspiration. I was fully focused on the latest episode of Mock The Week, able to chortle at the discussions about Scottish independence, Boris Johnson, and, of all things, Facebook and Twitter. I finished the the ebook I'd had on the go (Panic, by Lauren Oliver). I sorted out everything for the next day. And then I sat down to scribble this post.


There are things I want to achieve, and they won't get done if I am constantly glued to my newsfeed. There are a tonne of books I want to read – really read, not half-heartedly flick through. I want to explore more of my uni town, and get to know the area the same way I know back home. I want to socialise with my housemates and have proper conversations with the people I meet, instead of having one eye on my phone all the time. I want to develop the short story I wrote for my portfolio last year, and maybe even turn it into a novel one day. I'll be trying to find a way to do all these things and more, while reducing the amount of time I spend on social media. I want to get the balance right again.


What are your thoughts? Is your life ruled by social media or have you struck a good balance? Do you like to switch off now and then? Let me know in the comments!

Switching Off

I spend a lot of time browsing Twitter, checking my emails, creepin' on my Facebook friends, reading blog posts and writing comments, and looking for new Instagram accounts to follow. But it wasn't until recently, when I was heading back to uni, that I realised just how much attention I pay to social media, and electronics in general. I was stuck in my Travelodge room with no WiFi (they did have it but it cost extra, and going back to uni is expensive enough already) and, I thought initially, nothing to do.

I've always thought of myself as being pretty balanced when it comes to social media. I refuse to get Facebook on my phone, for example, since it means that once I've left the house I can only be reached via call or text. But lately I've noticed that I've been spending a lot of time staring at one screen or another, and I'm not sure I like it. It used to be that I worried my online presence wasn't great enough; now I worry that by focusing too much on the virtual world I'm missing out on the real one.

Don't get me wrong, social media can be a wonderful thing. I keep in contact with family and friends over Facebook; when I'm scrolling through my Tumblr dashboard I can see a photo that makes me laugh out loud, and then read a thought-provoking post immediately after; the #bbloggers chat is my favourite thing about Twitter.


However, during the short time I had no internet access, I devoured the October issue of Elle, which gave me a load of beauty inspiration. I was fully focused on the latest episode of Mock The Week, able to chortle at the discussions about Scottish independence, Boris Johnson, and, of all things, Facebook and Twitter. I finished the the ebook I'd had on the go (Panic, by Lauren Oliver). I sorted out everything for the next day. And then I sat down to scribble this post.


There are things I want to achieve, and they won't get done if I am constantly glued to my newsfeed. There are a tonne of books I want to read – really read, not half-heartedly flick through. I want to explore more of my uni town, and get to know the area the same way I know back home. I want to socialise with my housemates and have proper conversations with the people I meet, instead of having one eye on my phone all the time. I want to develop the short story I wrote for my portfolio last year, and maybe even turn it into a novel one day. I'll be trying to find a way to do all these things and more, while reducing the amount of time I spend on social media. I want to get the balance right again.


What are your thoughts? Is your life ruled by social media or have you struck a good balance? Do you like to switch off now and then? Let me know in the comments!
As this post is published I'll be enjoying a fry up, courtesy of the Toby Carvery, before heading off to my new house and setting everything up. My dad, who is always willing to give up his time and is the best taxi driver a girl could ask for, is helping me out, and was kind enough to drive me back to uni. Last year I was incredibly nervous about moving but this year I'm just excited  I can't wait to get back into a proper routine and catch up with my housemates and uni friends.


Welsh valleys

Moving Day and a Life Update

As this post is published I'll be enjoying a fry up, courtesy of the Toby Carvery, before heading off to my new house and setting everything up. My dad, who is always willing to give up his time and is the best taxi driver a girl could ask for, is helping me out, and was kind enough to drive me back to uni. Last year I was incredibly nervous about moving but this year I'm just excited  I can't wait to get back into a proper routine and catch up with my housemates and uni friends.


Welsh valleys

Charlotte Tilbury is one of those brands that make it practically impossible to choose what you would buy from them, because everything looks so damn good. Nevertheless, I've managed to narrow it down to five products, which will promptly be put on my Christmas list (yes, I went there). If my student loan allows for it then I may treat myself, but I've heard that the winter heating bill is a killer and, you know, I do need to eat. Fingers crossed that we have a mild winter in South Wales  highly unlikely, but a girl can dream!

So what did I pick?



Charlotte Tilbury Wishlist


My Charlotte Tilbury Wishlist

Charlotte Tilbury is one of those brands that make it practically impossible to choose what you would buy from them, because everything looks so damn good. Nevertheless, I've managed to narrow it down to five products, which will promptly be put on my Christmas list (yes, I went there). If my student loan allows for it then I may treat myself, but I've heard that the winter heating bill is a killer and, you know, I do need to eat. Fingers crossed that we have a mild winter in South Wales  highly unlikely, but a girl can dream!

So what did I pick?



Charlotte Tilbury Wishlist


The first thing on my to-do list after my spending ban finished was to replace my bottle of Cleanse & Polish, which ran out a few weeks ago. When I went on the website I noticed a new set was being sold: the Beauty Icons Collection. It costs £19.75 and includes a 100ml pump bottle of Cleanse & Polish, two muslin cloths, a 50ml bottle of the Skin Boost Tonic, and 50ml of the Eyebright Soothing Eye Lotion.

Liz Earle Beauty Icons Collection

First Impressions: Liz Earle Beauty Icons Collection

The first thing on my to-do list after my spending ban finished was to replace my bottle of Cleanse & Polish, which ran out a few weeks ago. When I went on the website I noticed a new set was being sold: the Beauty Icons Collection. It costs £19.75 and includes a 100ml pump bottle of Cleanse & Polish, two muslin cloths, a 50ml bottle of the Skin Boost Tonic, and 50ml of the Eyebright Soothing Eye Lotion.

Liz Earle Beauty Icons Collection

In the final installment of my Haircare Series, I thought I'd show you the products I'd like to try at some point. Unlike with skincare, I tend to be a little more experimental with the hair products I use, mainly because it's rare for me to find something that really works. Generally, I have three rules when it comes to products:


  • They have to soothe my scalp, or at least not irritate it
  • They have to cleanse/style my roots without making them greasy (shampoos/volumising products)
  • They have to moisturise the ends of my hair, without weighing them down

I don't ask for much, do I?

Without further ado, here's a list of the things I'd love to try:


The Haircare Series | Products I'd Love to Try



The Haircare Series: Products I'd Love to Try

In the final installment of my Haircare Series, I thought I'd show you the products I'd like to try at some point. Unlike with skincare, I tend to be a little more experimental with the hair products I use, mainly because it's rare for me to find something that really works. Generally, I have three rules when it comes to products:


  • They have to soothe my scalp, or at least not irritate it
  • They have to cleanse/style my roots without making them greasy (shampoos/volumising products)
  • They have to moisturise the ends of my hair, without weighing them down

I don't ask for much, do I?

Without further ado, here's a list of the things I'd love to try:


The Haircare Series | Products I'd Love to Try



I mentioned in previous posts that I am extremely lazy when it comes to my hair, and that extends to styling. Usually I just let it dry naturally and then run a bit of serum through it but there are occasions when effort is required, and that's when I break out the heat styling tools and the following products:

The Haircare Series: Styling Products

The Haircare Series: Styling Products

I mentioned in previous posts that I am extremely lazy when it comes to my hair, and that extends to styling. Usually I just let it dry naturally and then run a bit of serum through it but there are occasions when effort is required, and that's when I break out the heat styling tools and the following products:

The Haircare Series: Styling Products

I've read so many rave reviews about cleansing brushes like the Clarisonic, and I'm tempted, but the simple fact of the matter is: I can't afford one. I have a student budget and, frankly, I need to eat. So when I saw Soap & Glory's Face Massage Mini Mitt on Gemma's blog I decided to try it out. I think I can spare £4! 

Soap & Glory Face Massage Mini Mitt

Soap & Glory Face Massage Mini Mitt

I've read so many rave reviews about cleansing brushes like the Clarisonic, and I'm tempted, but the simple fact of the matter is: I can't afford one. I have a student budget and, frankly, I need to eat. So when I saw Soap & Glory's Face Massage Mini Mitt on Gemma's blog I decided to try it out. I think I can spare £4! 

Soap & Glory Face Massage Mini Mitt

I did it! I successfully completed my spending ban! Here's how the last week was for me:

Surviving the Last Few Days

The last couple of days were definitely the most difficult. There was part of me that was like 'You don't have long left, why not end the ban early?' and part of me was like 'No! You've made it this far, stick it out til the end!'

Ultimately, I made the full four weeks without buying any beauty products, and I'm proud of myself. I'm not gonna lie though, I will be having a shopping trip pretty soon! But it'll be a shopping trip for products I need, not just any old thing.


Body Lotion vs. Body Oil

Remember that lovely, fruity Soap & Glory body lotion I was raving about a few weeks ago? I used the last of it, boo. I rummaged around in my stash and found a bottle of Coconut Beautifying Oil by The Body Shop. I usually just use oil on areas like my elbows and knees because it takes so long to sink in but it does feel very luxurious so I can't complain!

Shopping My Stash

I squeezed the last drops of my faithful Una Brennan Clay Mask from the tube, and I must say it was a sad occasion. On the bright side, my skin is a lot less congested than it was a few months ago, and now I'm looking for something a bit more hydrating. 

Next week will be my final spending ban update, and I'll be sharing my post-ban wishlist with you!

The Spending Ban: Update #4

I did it! I successfully completed my spending ban! Here's how the last week was for me:

Surviving the Last Few Days

The last couple of days were definitely the most difficult. There was part of me that was like 'You don't have long left, why not end the ban early?' and part of me was like 'No! You've made it this far, stick it out til the end!'

Ultimately, I made the full four weeks without buying any beauty products, and I'm proud of myself. I'm not gonna lie though, I will be having a shopping trip pretty soon! But it'll be a shopping trip for products I need, not just any old thing.


Body Lotion vs. Body Oil

Remember that lovely, fruity Soap & Glory body lotion I was raving about a few weeks ago? I used the last of it, boo. I rummaged around in my stash and found a bottle of Coconut Beautifying Oil by The Body Shop. I usually just use oil on areas like my elbows and knees because it takes so long to sink in but it does feel very luxurious so I can't complain!

Shopping My Stash

I squeezed the last drops of my faithful Una Brennan Clay Mask from the tube, and I must say it was a sad occasion. On the bright side, my skin is a lot less congested than it was a few months ago, and now I'm looking for something a bit more hydrating. 

Next week will be my final spending ban update, and I'll be sharing my post-ban wishlist with you!
I've been using this eye cream for a couple of months so now is the time for a more in-depth review (I included it in my recent Skincare Series).

This is the first time I've tried something from the Yes To brand so I didn't really know what to expect, but I'm very happy with this product.


The skin around my eye area feels firmer, but the main thing it promises is to reduce dark circles, which it does. The difference is definitely noticeable  as you can see in the photos, I've seen an improvement over time.

Yes To Grapefruit Dark Circle Correcting Eye Cream

Yes To Grapefruit Dark Circle Correcting Eye Cream

I've been using this eye cream for a couple of months so now is the time for a more in-depth review (I included it in my recent Skincare Series).

This is the first time I've tried something from the Yes To brand so I didn't really know what to expect, but I'm very happy with this product.


The skin around my eye area feels firmer, but the main thing it promises is to reduce dark circles, which it does. The difference is definitely noticeable  as you can see in the photos, I've seen an improvement over time.

Yes To Grapefruit Dark Circle Correcting Eye Cream

Welcome to the second part of my Haircare Series! Last week I told you about my two favourite shampoos, and today I'm going to show you the conditioners I like to use.

The Haircare Series - Conditioner

The Haircare Series: Conditioner

Welcome to the second part of my Haircare Series! Last week I told you about my two favourite shampoos, and today I'm going to show you the conditioners I like to use.

The Haircare Series - Conditioner

This is the week where things really started to get difficult!

Resisting Temptation

Last Thursday I went into the city for lunch with my friend Dan and then afterwards I had some shopping to do. This was probably my biggest test yet, because I've started to get serious withdrawal symptoms, and I've got a list of things I need to replace.

Walking past Boots and Superdrug was torture, and I didn't even let myself go into Topshop in case their make up stand caught my eye as it so often does.


In the end, to fulfill the shopper's high I was so desperately craving, I settled for buying myself the latest issue of Marie Claire  if I can't buy new beauty products then I will read about them instead!

Moisturiser

The other morning my Una Brennan moisturiser ran out. Luckily, Elle recently gave away a free (Malin + Goetz) skincare set and it included a Vitamin E Face Moisturiser.

It has a light, silky texture and it makes my skin feel really smooth. I'm really enjoying using it and I can't wait to try more from (Malin + Goetz).

Shopping My Stash

Collection's Fast Stroke Eyeliner has been my favourite liquid liner for as long as I can remember but in summer I find myself eschewing the cat eye for something a little more natural.

However, there was one night when I found myself wanting something more 'done' for an evening in the pub and this was the product I reached for. The applicator is so easy to work with and the liner has great pigmentation and staying power. The best part? It only costs £2.99!

I will definitely be buying more of the Collection liner once my spending ban is over! Have you discovered any old favourites recently?

The Spending Ban: Update #3

This is the week where things really started to get difficult!

Resisting Temptation

Last Thursday I went into the city for lunch with my friend Dan and then afterwards I had some shopping to do. This was probably my biggest test yet, because I've started to get serious withdrawal symptoms, and I've got a list of things I need to replace.

Walking past Boots and Superdrug was torture, and I didn't even let myself go into Topshop in case their make up stand caught my eye as it so often does.


In the end, to fulfill the shopper's high I was so desperately craving, I settled for buying myself the latest issue of Marie Claire  if I can't buy new beauty products then I will read about them instead!

Moisturiser

The other morning my Una Brennan moisturiser ran out. Luckily, Elle recently gave away a free (Malin + Goetz) skincare set and it included a Vitamin E Face Moisturiser.

It has a light, silky texture and it makes my skin feel really smooth. I'm really enjoying using it and I can't wait to try more from (Malin + Goetz).

Shopping My Stash

Collection's Fast Stroke Eyeliner has been my favourite liquid liner for as long as I can remember but in summer I find myself eschewing the cat eye for something a little more natural.

However, there was one night when I found myself wanting something more 'done' for an evening in the pub and this was the product I reached for. The applicator is so easy to work with and the liner has great pigmentation and staying power. The best part? It only costs £2.99!

I will definitely be buying more of the Collection liner once my spending ban is over! Have you discovered any old favourites recently?
I saw the Would You Rather? tag on Alicia's blog and really enjoyed reading it so I thought I'd try it out myself. If anyone chooses to do the tag too then let me know; I'd love to read your answers!


Charlotte Tilbury Dolce Vita
Charlotte Tilbury Luxury Palette in The Dolce Vita


Would You Rather?

I saw the Would You Rather? tag on Alicia's blog and really enjoyed reading it so I thought I'd try it out myself. If anyone chooses to do the tag too then let me know; I'd love to read your answers!


Charlotte Tilbury Dolce Vita
Charlotte Tilbury Luxury Palette in The Dolce Vita


My hair is fine, curly and frizz-prone. The ends are dry but the roots get greasy quite quickly, and my scalp can get very itchy, to the point where I actually have a prescription shampoo to calm it down. It's taken me a long time to find out which hair products work for me (and which ones don't!) and I still haven't got it completely figured out. 

However, I've reached a point where I'm having more good hair days than bad, so I thought I'd do a series on my haircare routine (a bit like my Skincare Series, which you can read here). I love to spend time experimenting with make up but when it comes to hair I like to make as little effort as possible, so this is definitely a lazy girl's routine!


Lush Shampoo


LUSH Rehab Shampoo, £5.40 for 100g (v)

This lathers like crazy and is brilliant for removing build up  the phrase 'squeaky clean' was made for this product. It contains mostly natural ingredients, including peppermint and juniper, which are said to improve the scalp's condition over time. A little bit goes a long way; I bought my 100ml bottle weeks and weeks ago and the bottle still looks full.     


LUSH Blousey Banana Shampoo, £18 for 240g (v)

Rehab is amazing but frequent use would dry my hair out. This is where Blousey comes in. It's an incredibly moisturising shampoo that also contains ingredients which are good for the scalp and, again, a little goes a long way.

Unlike Rehab, this does not lather at all so it feels a bit weird at first. I've found that the best way to use it is to apply it directly to the hair and massage it in before rinsing.


Afterwards my hair feels soft, but not limp, so don't be put off by the thick consistency. Blousey really is perfect if your hair is feeling a bit dry and damaged. 


I'll be posting The Haircare Series every Friday. Next week: conditioner!


(v) = vegan

The Haircare Series: Shampoo

My hair is fine, curly and frizz-prone. The ends are dry but the roots get greasy quite quickly, and my scalp can get very itchy, to the point where I actually have a prescription shampoo to calm it down. It's taken me a long time to find out which hair products work for me (and which ones don't!) and I still haven't got it completely figured out. 

However, I've reached a point where I'm having more good hair days than bad, so I thought I'd do a series on my haircare routine (a bit like my Skincare Series, which you can read here). I love to spend time experimenting with make up but when it comes to hair I like to make as little effort as possible, so this is definitely a lazy girl's routine!


Lush Shampoo


LUSH Rehab Shampoo, £5.40 for 100g (v)

This lathers like crazy and is brilliant for removing build up  the phrase 'squeaky clean' was made for this product. It contains mostly natural ingredients, including peppermint and juniper, which are said to improve the scalp's condition over time. A little bit goes a long way; I bought my 100ml bottle weeks and weeks ago and the bottle still looks full.     


LUSH Blousey Banana Shampoo, £18 for 240g (v)

Rehab is amazing but frequent use would dry my hair out. This is where Blousey comes in. It's an incredibly moisturising shampoo that also contains ingredients which are good for the scalp and, again, a little goes a long way.

Unlike Rehab, this does not lather at all so it feels a bit weird at first. I've found that the best way to use it is to apply it directly to the hair and massage it in before rinsing.


Afterwards my hair feels soft, but not limp, so don't be put off by the thick consistency. Blousey really is perfect if your hair is feeling a bit dry and damaged. 


I'll be posting The Haircare Series every Friday. Next week: conditioner!


(v) = vegan
This week has been fairly easy in terms of temptation  I've been so rushed off my feet that I've barely had time to do my make up, never mind buy more! The most pesky thing about being on a spending ban is definitely all the emails I get with special offers in them, so I've been deleting them as quickly as I can. Out of sight, out of mind (sort of).

Seventeen Stay Pout Lipstick in Make An Entrance

The Spending Ban: Update #2

This week has been fairly easy in terms of temptation  I've been so rushed off my feet that I've barely had time to do my make up, never mind buy more! The most pesky thing about being on a spending ban is definitely all the emails I get with special offers in them, so I've been deleting them as quickly as I can. Out of sight, out of mind (sort of).

Seventeen Stay Pout Lipstick in Make An Entrance

Last week I announced that I was on a spending ban — I'm not allowed to buy any beauty products for four weeks. One week in, I thought I'd let you know how it's going so far.

I rediscovered the eyeshadow I used to create this look! I've gone quite dramatic here but it can also be used to create a subtle wash of colour.

The Spending Ban: Update #1

Last week I announced that I was on a spending ban — I'm not allowed to buy any beauty products for four weeks. One week in, I thought I'd let you know how it's going so far.

I rediscovered the eyeshadow I used to create this look! I've gone quite dramatic here but it can also be used to create a subtle wash of colour.

Occasionally when I go shopping I come across a product I used to use but stopped buying, for whatever reason (usually because I wanted to try different things!) Soap & Glory's Butter Yourself is one such item, but it's been my body moisturiser of choice for several weeks now.

So, what's so good about it?



Soap & Glory Butter Yourself

Occasionally when I go shopping I come across a product I used to use but stopped buying, for whatever reason (usually because I wanted to try different things!) Soap & Glory's Butter Yourself is one such item, but it's been my body moisturiser of choice for several weeks now.

So, what's so good about it?



Oh Boots 3-for-2, I do love you. I needed to pick up a third item and ended up going for Sanctuary Spa's Sleep-In-A-Box. I've been wondering whether to try the Comforting Night Butter for ages now, and I'm quite tempted by some of the other products in the range. Sleep-In-A-Box contains four sample size products so it seemed like the perfect way to try everything.

Sanctuary Spa Sleep-In-A-Box

Sanctuary Spa Sleep-In-A-Box

Oh Boots 3-for-2, I do love you. I needed to pick up a third item and ended up going for Sanctuary Spa's Sleep-In-A-Box. I've been wondering whether to try the Comforting Night Butter for ages now, and I'm quite tempted by some of the other products in the range. Sleep-In-A-Box contains four sample size products so it seemed like the perfect way to try everything.

Sanctuary Spa Sleep-In-A-Box

I've noticed that us bloggers are divided when it comes to spending bans  some people I spoke to on the #bbloggers chat thought they were a great idea, others were less certain, citing lack of willpower.

I will freely admit that I've been buying too much recently so I thought I'd try and go on a spending ban of my own, partly to save myself some money and partly to see whether I can actually do it.

If you have any advice then please let me know in the comments! Lots of people pointed out that spending bans are a chance to rediscover old favourites I already have in my stash, so every Monday I'll update you on my progress and let you know what I've found.

The ban, which is on all beauty products, begins today and will last for four weeks  wish me luck!

I'm Going on a Spending Ban!

I've noticed that us bloggers are divided when it comes to spending bans  some people I spoke to on the #bbloggers chat thought they were a great idea, others were less certain, citing lack of willpower.

I will freely admit that I've been buying too much recently so I thought I'd try and go on a spending ban of my own, partly to save myself some money and partly to see whether I can actually do it.

If you have any advice then please let me know in the comments! Lots of people pointed out that spending bans are a chance to rediscover old favourites I already have in my stash, so every Monday I'll update you on my progress and let you know what I've found.

The ban, which is on all beauty products, begins today and will last for four weeks  wish me luck!
I was excited to try out the Caviar Manicure set by Ciate (it was free with last month's Marie Claire).


The set I picked up is called Purple Rain. I absolutely love the polish, Pillow Fight, which is grey with purple undertones — it's a great neutral and (aside from a tiny bit of wear on the tips of a couple of my nails) it's lasted for five days so far. The brush in the bottle is the perfect shape too, wider than most but not too big, with a rounded end that makes it easier to keep your cuticles neat.


Ciate Caviar Manicure

Ciate Caviar Manicure in Purple Rain

I was excited to try out the Caviar Manicure set by Ciate (it was free with last month's Marie Claire).


The set I picked up is called Purple Rain. I absolutely love the polish, Pillow Fight, which is grey with purple undertones — it's a great neutral and (aside from a tiny bit of wear on the tips of a couple of my nails) it's lasted for five days so far. The brush in the bottle is the perfect shape too, wider than most but not too big, with a rounded end that makes it easier to keep your cuticles neat.


Ciate Caviar Manicure

I like to take a bit more time with my skincare in the evening, mainly because I'm conscious of removing all my make up, but also because I find it relaxing  it's been part of my bedtime routine for years now.

Evening Skincare Routine

Three of my evening products are the same as those I use in the morning: Liz Earle's Cleanse & Polish, The Body Shop Vitamin E Toner and Yes To Grapefruit Eye Cream. You can read about my morning routine here. In addition, I like: 

Superfacialist by Una Brennan Miracle Makeover Facial Oil, £14.99
Designed to be a pre-cleanse, I use it before Cleanse & Polish when my skin needs something extra; it's so luxurious and doesn't leave skin feeling greasy. A little bit goes a long way and I love the rose scent too. As you can see, I've nearly finished the bottle so I'll be buying another one soon. 

The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil, £12
After reading several rave reviews I caved in and bought this. In fairness, I did need something a little bit richer for my skin at night and I'm so glad I chose this. I apply it just before I go to sleep and leave it to sink in. It does take a while, but in the morning my skin is always much softer and the dry patches that have been bothering me recently are disappearing with continued use. I'm impressed!

What do you use in the evening? Let me know in the comments!

The Skincare Series: Current Routine (Evening)

I like to take a bit more time with my skincare in the evening, mainly because I'm conscious of removing all my make up, but also because I find it relaxing  it's been part of my bedtime routine for years now.

Evening Skincare Routine

Three of my evening products are the same as those I use in the morning: Liz Earle's Cleanse & Polish, The Body Shop Vitamin E Toner and Yes To Grapefruit Eye Cream. You can read about my morning routine here. In addition, I like: 

Superfacialist by Una Brennan Miracle Makeover Facial Oil, £14.99
Designed to be a pre-cleanse, I use it before Cleanse & Polish when my skin needs something extra; it's so luxurious and doesn't leave skin feeling greasy. A little bit goes a long way and I love the rose scent too. As you can see, I've nearly finished the bottle so I'll be buying another one soon. 

The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil, £12
After reading several rave reviews I caved in and bought this. In fairness, I did need something a little bit richer for my skin at night and I'm so glad I chose this. I apply it just before I go to sleep and leave it to sink in. It does take a while, but in the morning my skin is always much softer and the dry patches that have been bothering me recently are disappearing with continued use. I'm impressed!

What do you use in the evening? Let me know in the comments!
I am not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination so I like to keep things simple: cleanse, tone, moisturise, done.

Morning Skincare Routine

The Skincare Series: Current Routine (Morning)

I am not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination so I like to keep things simple: cleanse, tone, moisturise, done.

Morning Skincare Routine

I've been wearing make-up for years now but Soap & Glory Solar Powder is the first bronzer I've ever bought. Most of them look too orange or just too dark and being a pale girl I don't want to look like I've applied mud to my face.

Soap & Glory Solar Powder (in packaging)



Soap & Glory Solar Powder

I've been wearing make-up for years now but Soap & Glory Solar Powder is the first bronzer I've ever bought. Most of them look too orange or just too dark and being a pale girl I don't want to look like I've applied mud to my face.

Soap & Glory Solar Powder (in packaging)



I have to admit, I haven't been wearing much make up this month because, until recently, I've been revising for exams and not really caring what state my face is in. When I have ventured outside I've tried to keep it simple, fresh and fuss-free.

In My Make-Up Bag
Make up bag from Waldo Pancake


In My Make Up Bag #1

I have to admit, I haven't been wearing much make up this month because, until recently, I've been revising for exams and not really caring what state my face is in. When I have ventured outside I've tried to keep it simple, fresh and fuss-free.

In My Make-Up Bag
Make up bag from Waldo Pancake


I've become obsessed with Lush recently, mainly because everything I've tried I've loved but also because I know that their products are cruelty free. I can never resist popping into the Cardiff store  the staff are always so lovely.

On my last visit I picked up a body scrub, Rub Rub Rub, and a moisturiser, Dream Cream. They work well separately but I really notice a difference in my skin when I use them both in one evening.

LUSH Rub Rub Rub and Dream Cream


Lush Rub Rub Rub and Dream Cream

I've become obsessed with Lush recently, mainly because everything I've tried I've loved but also because I know that their products are cruelty free. I can never resist popping into the Cardiff store  the staff are always so lovely.

On my last visit I picked up a body scrub, Rub Rub Rub, and a moisturiser, Dream Cream. They work well separately but I really notice a difference in my skin when I use them both in one evening.

LUSH Rub Rub Rub and Dream Cream


I'm back in England for Easter and currently enjoying all my home comforts, not to mention making the most of being able to spend time with my family and friends here. Something my mum and I love to do together is go shopping, so I thought I'd show you what I bought on our trip. She's the perfect shopping partner because she's not afraid to say what looks good and what looks absolutely terrible!



Shopping Trip

A Shopping Trip with Mumma Toasty

I'm back in England for Easter and currently enjoying all my home comforts, not to mention making the most of being able to spend time with my family and friends here. Something my mum and I love to do together is go shopping, so I thought I'd show you what I bought on our trip. She's the perfect shopping partner because she's not afraid to say what looks good and what looks absolutely terrible!



Shopping Trip

Getting a Liz Earle order through the post makes my day, since they're always beautifully wrapped and come with a free sample. On this occasion I got a little sachet of Vanilla & Saffron Silky Body Lotion to try, so I thought I'd share my thoughts with you.

Liz Earle Vanilla & Saffron Silky Body Lotion

Liz Earle Vanilla & Saffron Silky Body Lotion

Getting a Liz Earle order through the post makes my day, since they're always beautifully wrapped and come with a free sample. On this occasion I got a little sachet of Vanilla & Saffron Silky Body Lotion to try, so I thought I'd share my thoughts with you.

Liz Earle Vanilla & Saffron Silky Body Lotion

The hunt for a good shampoo has begun again. I had my hopes up when I tried Naked's Mild Shampoo. It was good at first, but after a few weeks of use I started to notice a burning sensation on my scalp after I washed it. I stopped using it and the burning disappeared, so I guess it won't be my holy grail after all!

I decided to abandon the aisles of Boots and Superdrug and popped into Lush's Cardiff store. The staff in there are always so lovely, and the woman who served me (I don't know her name but she was really helpful) sat me down and asked what my hair was like and what I wanted from a shampoo.

She brought out some samples of several products she thought might suit me and I tried them against my skin to see if they caused a reaction (only one did). There were a couple of solid shampoo bars (Soak and Float and Trichomania), a bottle of Fairly Traded Honey (which did not agree with me) and a pot of Blousey.


LUSH Blousey Banana Shampoo


Lush Blousey Banana Shampoo

The hunt for a good shampoo has begun again. I had my hopes up when I tried Naked's Mild Shampoo. It was good at first, but after a few weeks of use I started to notice a burning sensation on my scalp after I washed it. I stopped using it and the burning disappeared, so I guess it won't be my holy grail after all!

I decided to abandon the aisles of Boots and Superdrug and popped into Lush's Cardiff store. The staff in there are always so lovely, and the woman who served me (I don't know her name but she was really helpful) sat me down and asked what my hair was like and what I wanted from a shampoo.

She brought out some samples of several products she thought might suit me and I tried them against my skin to see if they caused a reaction (only one did). There were a couple of solid shampoo bars (Soak and Float and Trichomania), a bottle of Fairly Traded Honey (which did not agree with me) and a pot of Blousey.


LUSH Blousey Banana Shampoo


Models Own often have offers on their website, so when I fancied buying some new shades of nail polish last month there was only one place to go. I got 5 polishes for £20 (they're usually £5 each) but their current offer is an even better 6-for-£20 across everything, including make up, so it's well worth having a look.


Models Own Nail Polishes

Models Own Mini Haul

Models Own often have offers on their website, so when I fancied buying some new shades of nail polish last month there was only one place to go. I got 5 polishes for £20 (they're usually £5 each) but their current offer is an even better 6-for-£20 across everything, including make up, so it's well worth having a look.


Models Own Nail Polishes

Toasty is going cruelty-free.

I was using the Naked haircare products I reviewed the other day and wondered whether buying more natural products was the way to go. Then I saw Hayley's blog post about how she's going to go cruelty free  by that she means not using any products that are tested on animals or featuring any of those products on her blog.

She posted a link to the 'naughty list'  a list of companies that do test on animals  and I was absolutely gobsmacked at how many there were. I'd been blissfully unaware and assumed, somewhat naively, that most companies didn't really do that anymore.

I made a list of all the brands I own and then did some snooping online, checking out the PETA website and also the websites of the companies themselves. One thing I noticed is that the companies who don't test on animals make that very clear, while the companies that do are much more evasive about their policies, which are a lot more difficult to find on their websites.

There are a few exceptions to this trend  Estee Lauder and Clinique both admit that they're trying to eliminate animal testing but have to carry it out when required to by law. Sounds to me like the law needs to be changed!




A Cruelty-Free Blog

Toasty is going cruelty-free.

I was using the Naked haircare products I reviewed the other day and wondered whether buying more natural products was the way to go. Then I saw Hayley's blog post about how she's going to go cruelty free  by that she means not using any products that are tested on animals or featuring any of those products on her blog.

She posted a link to the 'naughty list'  a list of companies that do test on animals  and I was absolutely gobsmacked at how many there were. I'd been blissfully unaware and assumed, somewhat naively, that most companies didn't really do that anymore.

I made a list of all the brands I own and then did some snooping online, checking out the PETA website and also the websites of the companies themselves. One thing I noticed is that the companies who don't test on animals make that very clear, while the companies that do are much more evasive about their policies, which are a lot more difficult to find on their websites.

There are a few exceptions to this trend  Estee Lauder and Clinique both admit that they're trying to eliminate animal testing but have to carry it out when required to by law. Sounds to me like the law needs to be changed!




I've read lots of good reviews about Naked's products so when I saw they them on offer  2 for £6  in Boots I decided to try them for myself.

Naked Haircare

Naked Haircare

I've read lots of good reviews about Naked's products so when I saw they them on offer  2 for £6  in Boots I decided to try them for myself.

Naked Haircare

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Beth, 23, South East England. I'm a writer with a love of books, lipstick, and the Oxford comma. I love beauty and I also love animals, so I only buy, use, and feature products from cruelty-free brands. (Seriously though, I am the person who stops to fuss over every dog she sees.) You can also expect posts about vegan/vegetarian food, and plenty of musings about life as a 20-something. Want to get in touch? Email me at beth.toasty@gmail.com

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