Golden hair for the holidays

jolen-creme-bleach-original-review - 1Little details in our beauty regimes make all the difference, and Jolen is one of this products that give that almost imperceptible touch that really refines the look.

I have very fine, but abundant hair in my arms and being dark haired means my little hairs are too. I wouldn’t go as far as to say they bother me, but they show.

Well, Jolen Creme Bleach to the rescue.

jolen-creme-bleach-original-review - 2To celebrate its 50th anniversary, classic Jolen has revamped its packaging and also made the bleaching kit easier to use, adding a handy and tiny mixing bowl to the box.

Just wash the area with soap and water, add the cream to the mark on the bowl, one lid of the accelerator powder and mix well with the spatula provided.

I did a patch test on the inside of my arms and left for a full 10 minutes before proceeding to do the whole arm.

jolen-creme-bleach-original-review - 3To make application in larger areas easier, it also comes with a rectangular larger spatula, which I used to do my forearms.

Easy to apply, it only takes 10 minutes to work its magic – that time was enough for mine to bleach completely, but it might take a bit longer, or less, of some.

It’s practically smell free and you barely feel it on the skin; there was a tiny bit of tingle in some points, but nothing uncomfortable.

Hairs were discoloured easily and quickly, no fuss, no mess.

jolen-creme-bleach-original-review - 4 (1)Jolen Creme Bleach is suitable for the whole body, including the face: brows, sideburns, the dreaded moustache. Jolen has got your back!

This was the first time I used it and now I think how I lived without it for so long. For the beach, it’s particularly nice as the tan shows through much more.

Have to say, I am adopting as a regular into my regime. Love it!

The Jolen Creme Bleach Original kit costs around £4 for 30ml and can be purchased from major retailers nationwide.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Mastering the flick

lancome-grandiose-eyeliner-review - 1I shall not be seen without my flick! True story. Eyeliners are a huge love of mine, up there with lipstick and Lancôme just did it pretty!

Not only pretty, but the Lancôme Grandiôse liner is also pretty awesome.

The packaging is gorgeous, a little gem with the beautiful brand flower encased at the top of the wand.

lancome-grandiose-eyeliner-review - 1 (1)The formula is good, although maybe slightly dry so needs picking up several times from the bottle for a flick.

The shade Noir Mirifique is super black matte, quick-drying with a fabulous staying power. I mean, hardcore.

lancome-grandiose-eyeliner-review - 3Now, let’s talk about the bendable wand. I think the brush is lovely and extremely precise. The fact it bends can help; it is more ergonomic and intuitive when bent; you can get the brush closer to the roots and corners.

Personally, as I am used to lining with straight brushes so it feels pretty much the same for me.

However, it is the prettiest thing and a fabulous liner that lasts all day. Cannot really ask for more!

The Lancôme Grandiôse Liner costs £23 and is available from the Lancôme website and retailers nationwide.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Plump it up!

sleek-plumping-lip-crayon-review - 1On this is always sure: you can always count on Sleek to produce the goods.

I’m a lipstick love but I find quite the application rather tedious (read proper application – liner, brush, shaping, the whole thing!), so for everyday, I favour lip crayons that deliver good pigmentation and durability.

sleek-plumping-lip-crayon-review - 9Enter Sleek Power Plump Lip Crayons, a brand new product launched on the 29 June, which delivers all that plus a stinging plump to the lips.

sleek-plumping-lip-crayon-review - 10The Sleek Power Plum lip crayons comes in six mega wearable colours – red, pinks, coral, nudes: there’s something for everyone.

It’s super smooth with a sheen finish, delivers well in colour pigmentation and last well for the finish, fading evenly and not drying the lips.

sleek-plumping-lip-crayon-review - 7Now, the plumping divided the audience. The sting operation is real and lasts. While I didn’t mind, Alice, my blonde in residence, testing pinks, wasn’t super comfortable with the sensation.

And at each application, it brings back the heat – it’s like you put chillies in your lips. Now, I cannot take spicy food for my life, and I was cool with it; the plumpy feeling is real!

The Sleek Power Plump lip crayons are brand new and just launched, late last month, in six colours, at £5.50 each. You can get them from the Sleek website or from Superdrug.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Discovering Seventeen

seventeen-makeup - 1Seventeen is one of those brands I’ve been familiar with for a while, but never actually tried anything from.

Maybe because I’m more on the No7 age bracket, but never mind! It turns out I got quite the surprise…

As a proper introduction, I was delighted to give some of their best selling products a go.

seventeen-makeup - 2Their Define & Conquer count our kit is super slim and fits well in any makeup bag. The highlighter is light and matte, which makes a huge change from all the powder highlighters I use, which have some shimmer in. It does work well to lift the highlighted points very subtly, which I really liked.

The contour powder is a light tan, not very warm, that works as well as a count our as it does as a subtle bronzer.

seventeen-makeup - 1The kit also comes with an easy-to-follow, straight forward guide for application.

Both apply and blend well, as have a decent durability.

seventeen-makeup - 3The Skin WOW! Concealer is clearly a dupe for the YSL Touché Eclat, and works in the same way, to highlight and conceal.

Used under the eyes, it brighten it up, and works in other parts of the face as a discreet highlighter.

seventeen-makeup - 4The formula is less rich than the more expensive cousin, and that reflects a bit on the pigmentation and overall effect, but means it blends easier.

Now, what cannot go unnoticed are the prices: Seventeen delivers great value for money.

Maybe I am indeed on the Seventeen age bracket!

The Define & Conquer countour kit costs £5.99 and is available in two shades: Fair and Medium. Skin WOW! Concealer is priced at £4.99 and also comes in the Fair and Medium shades.

At the moment, you can get a second item half price on selected Seventeen products – and let’s not forget all those precious Boots cards points!

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Pluck them good!

the-vintage-cosmetic-company-rose-gold-slanted-tweezers-review - 1As a blogger, I felt as a failure for not being a huge fan of all things rose gold. Let’s just say that in the recent months it grew on me, and I blame my Coach watch for that.

No surprise I was ecstatic to meet with the lovely guys from The Vintage Cosmetic Company for the launch of a new addition to their pretty rose gold tools range: the slanted tweezers.

the-vintage-cosmetic-company-rose-gold-slanted-tweezers-review - 3I’m a big plucker as I cannot stand hair, so this baby was a welcome addition.

Obviously they look pretty, with the engraved brand and slightly brushed stainless steel, but don’t be fooled by the shiny pink: these tweezers are very sturdy, easy to hold and with a fab grip on hair, removing from the root and not breaking them.

the-vintage-cosmetic-company-rose-gold-slanted-tweezers-review - 4For perfect plucking, always do it in the direction of hair, and if you do after showering, when pores are dilated, it is easier to remove.

The slant size is great for general plucking, and if you flip to use the high side, you get great precision.

the-vintage-cosmetic-company-rose-gold-slanted-tweezers-review - 2They are also great to apply eyelashes (The Vintage Cosmetic Company has some fab ones and I’m a fan) and the round tip is also handy to gently press them in place.

The tweezers were part of last month’s Pink Parcel‘s box of treats. Pretty and useful – just my kind of thing.

You can get The Vintage Cosmetic Company Slanted Tweezers from their website and retailers nationwide, such as Boots, and they costs £8.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

A fresh, hydrating breeze

avene-eau-thermale-review - 2I am a huge fan of face mists, there is no denying.

Now that the weather is slightly better, I feel I can talk about it and not feel that if I actually spray water on my face, it would freeze before reaching it. Yes, I am bitter with this lack of summer thing.

Avène Eau Thermale thermal spring water spray, however, is a bliss for any weather.

In the summer, it cools and refreshes. In the winter, it is perfect for soothing. Because the thermal water is captured straight from the source, it retains all its amazing natural soothing and anti-irritating properties.

avene-eau-thermale-review - 1All squeezed into in a handy spray. The very fine mist lands lightly and feels amazing on the skin, delivering immediate comfort. It is fabulous over makeup, to freshen up, but even better directly on the skin.

It is very pure, all it has is the purest water, and also leaves a barrier for a long-lasting effect. It is great for all skin types, but mainly irritated and sensitive skin.

I confess I am a bit addicted!

This is 50 ml (around £3.50) and the 2016 special edition of their flower girl, but you can get this size all year round in the normal packaging – perfect for handbags and flying.

The Avène Eau Thermale thermal spring water spray also comes in 150ml (£6.50) and 300ml (£10), and can be bought from big retailers, such as Boots, in-store and online.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Step back to 1877 with Stella Artois Time Portal

We love London, right? And we love Wimbledon. Plus we have a penchant for all things Victorian…

No surprises then when Stella Artois, the official beer of Wimbledon, invited me to The Time Portal, an immersive theatre experience that took me back to Victorian London in the search of the first Wimbledon tournament, I couldn’t say no.

img_5056Under a cinema sign on Stoke Newington Road in Dalston, East London, I was taken into an adventure to help someone make their little tennis tournament known. And guess what? At the same time a certain beer, was also just starting out.

Full of one to one interactions, last night I stepped into a time machine, came off into a Victorian market and helped little pickpockets perform their tricks, solve a murder and give Scrooge peace of mind – all for the noble cause of helping Spencer Gore win the very first Wimbledon Championships and get the cup from Queen Victoria herself.

After my little adventure, I was transported to a bar where I quenched my thirst with some Stella Artois beer and cidre.

The whole experience was very dynamic, lively and a lot of fun, loaded with East London cheekiness, as well as nicely set – be prepared for that eastend rundown vibe.

For four days only, you can experience this trip back in time, by acclaimed theatre companies Olivier Award nominated Les Enfants Terribles and Framestore, especially commissioned by Stella Artois, that inspired me a bit to think how I’m making my own mark in the world.

The Time Portal run from 7-10 July and is priced from £13.50 – £18 (including a £1 booking fee), lasts 40 minutes and includes two complimentary drinks.

Of course, the bar will be open for business if fancy more!

You can book your tickets on the Stella Artois Time Portal site – and hurry, just like going back into the past, if you blink, you’ll miss this one!

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Stella Artois kindly took me to 1877 – thanks! – but opinions are my own. 

Smooth steps into the summer

superdrug-foot-care - 2A bit hard to believe but it is summer in the UK, but we’ll roll with it.

Nothing better than finally releasing your feet from the shackles of boots, tights and multiple socks. But wait – are those feet in tip-top condition?

Fear not, Superdrug has everything you need to get them sandal-ready in no time.

superdrug-foot-care - 1My favourite is the Rapid-pedi electronic foot file, which works a treat to remove dead skin (gross, I know) and leave your footsies super smooth.

This is particularly important for me as my gym activities tend to be barefoot so the skin really grows and thickens (gross x2).

This handy device comes with two files, fine and coarse, for blitzing that unsightly skin.

superdrug-foot-care - 5I also use it on my hands, which have the tell-tale calluses of aerial hoop, to make them more acceptable and make sure my dates do not recoil when I touch them. Sad times.

And it’s only £19.99, a great value for money. At the moment, it’s only £13.30 and you can get refill files for £6.99 a pack.

Apologies for the close-up of my foot!

After filing, I like to apply a good soothing and conditioning cream, like this barefoot lemon and sage foot balm. It’s fresh and light, so it doesn’t stick;

Sometimes, I apply something stronger, like the barefoot foot lotion or Superdrug Intensive foot cream. Works a treat when used overnight with socks on.

superdrug-foot-care - 4Sorry, I sleep alone so no issues there.  Or I’d like to think so. Maybe that’s why I sleep alone!

Their foot care range has everything – even the emergencial plaster and those handy blister plaster for the foot to make sure those beautifully care for feet dance all night!

superdrug-foot-care - 3The blister plaster lasts all day, very useful for new pumps that rub at the back.

I can certainly count on Superdrug to look after me!

Take a look at their foot care range on the Superdrug website. At the moment, they had 1/3 off selected footcare and a free barefoot gift when you buy any 2 footcare products in the promotion!

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

That monthly thing

pink-parcel-review - 2Girls don’t really talk about our periods a lot. Not that it is the kind of thing that comes up in conversation all the time, but many tend to avoid any mention.

Truth is, it is (almost) always there. There is the discomfort, the PMS, the tenderness, the bloating, swelling, cramps… some have it much worst than others, but for most of us, it just doesn’t go unnoticed.

I am quite sensitive in my privates (sorry, over sharing), so I always keep an eye on it; I get irritation, thrush and UTI quite often if I don’t look after myself properly; that include trying to control the stresses of daily life, which do not help the cause.

That’s why I welcomed the Pink Parcel this month, my first since coming off the pill for a very long time. I was expecting it to be a nightmare, which it wasn’t, but this monthly useful treat really made it a bit better.

The Pink Parcel comes with all your tampon and pads needs – when signing up, you can pick your brand so you stick with what you like, and you can mix pads and tampons, to suit your taste. They send you enough for a normal 3-4 period so you don’t have to worry.

They have three shipping dates in the month, so you can pick the one closer to your time. Personally, I think getting it 3-5 days before my period is the best, so I can reach out for treats during the dreaded PMS.

The box comes split in neat (I love that) “sections” if you wish; “for now”, a fabric pouch, comes with pads and tampons for every day, to go in the handbag; “for later”, more pads and tampons to keep and replenish that handy little bag, “for down there”, some soothing and/or cleansing product (mine came with one of my faves Femfresh wipes) and “for you” comes packed with treats.

pink-parcel-review - 10I was very impressed with the amount of pads and tampons, as well as the “for you” treat box: something sweet, but not too much, some relaxing items, like the Badger Sleep Balm and tea plus beauty treats including favourite brands like Simple and lottie London, and some new to discover, like True Brit nail polish.

Every month, you can count on the box to come with tampons (your selected brand and something new to try), pads, tea, something sweet and beauty products.

Beauty boxes for me are not that appealing, but this is actually useful as  it comes in the right time, giving me exactly what I need!

You can subscribe to your Pink Parcel via their website, the first one costs only £6.99 including P&P, and the following one, £10.50, P&P also included!

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

 

Flirting with the light side: nude on my lips

laura-mercier-sheer-lip-review - 1Wait. Is that a nude-ish lipstick. Ok. You got me.

My eternal affair with red is undeniable but it turns out that in the past months I became less and less monogamous.

laura-mercier-sheer-lip-review - 2I feel nude-ish lipsticks are just easy to wear and uncomplicated. This might not be the “classic” nude, but we know the definition of nude is a bit skewed; it should be what comes close to your natural shade.

For me, the best “nudes” are the pinkish ones, which are – ahem – close to my natural lip colour, so it feels just like it’s amped up, shinier, softer and prettier.

Enter Laura Mercier Sheer Lip Colour in Baby Lips, all the way from the gorgeous Liberty. This lipstick is super soft and glides beautifully on the lips. The smell is lightly sweet.

It is semi-matte and delivers a good colour for its “sheer” name; it also feels hydrating and has anti-ageing properties.

For being creamy and sheer, admittedly, it does not last forever on the lips, but does a good job fading evenly, not feathering, bleeding or drying lips.

Apart from this brand new addition to my unlikely growing selection of nudes, I love Sleek Private Booth and GOSH Matte in Rose.

Who would know?

The Laura Mercier Sheer Lip Colour is available at Liberty in six flattering colours and costs £19.50.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.