The Christmas Tag | Blogmas 2014

 
Picture via Pinterest, edited by me.

I've noticed this tag all over the blog/vlog world and decided to give it a go myself. I am a huge fan of Christmas and just get so excited!!! I can't fricking wait!

1. What is your favourite Christmas film?
Oh gosh..I have a few! Elf is so good and makes me laugh. Although Muppet Christmas Film is a classic and reminds me of being a kid. Love Actually and The Holiday are such lovely Christmas films.. I can't decide!

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?
Christmas Day!!! I don't actually know anyone that opens their presents on Christmas Eve...

3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
Again, I have a few..Probably the last Christmas with my Grandma. I miss us all sitting around the Christmas table together and telling terrible cracker jokes. I miss us all seeing how long it would take before she fell asleep on the sofa. Not really a memory..just something I miss.

4. Favourite festive food?
PIGS IN BLANKETS. Mmmm they are my speciality that I make for Christmas dinner. That is the one job I have on Christmas day. To make the pigs in blankets. And they are bloody good, even if I do say so myself.

5. Favourite Christmas gift?
Probably..when I was a kid, I got a barbie and a barbie kitchen!! It came with a fridge, plates and everything!! The full works. That is one present that stays with me. I miss being able to play with barbies. I suppose I still could, but it would be seriously uncool. 

6. Favourite Christmas scent?
A real christmas tree scent! I actually have a fake tree as it lasts longer, but there is nothing better than a real Christmas tree smell. I also love a good Christmas candle. Nothing with spice, just a nice berry scent.

7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions? 
Well I usually work on Christmas Eve, then I go to pub with all my family and all the village locals are there, we have a few drinks and listen to the Christmas karaoke. Myself & Aaron will then head to my mums house with all our presents. Listen to Christmas music, put all our presents under the tree and sleepover. I love Christmas Eve! Just talking about it has me REALLY excited.

8. What tops your tree?
I haven't actually found a tree topper I like. On my family home tree, it is a angel that I swear is about 100 years old, but I can't imagine having a different one. However, at mine and Aarons home we don't hang a wooden angel decoration, that says 'Guardian Angel'. For my Grandma and Aarons Mum. They are always part of our Christmas.

9. As a kid what was one crazy/wild extravagant gift you wanted but never received? 
A pony. I always wanted my own horse and riding lessons. I never got them. I still haven't quite forgiven my parents...


10. What is the best part of Christmas for you?
Quality family time. I love how we all get together, enjoy good food and have a laugh.I also LOVE Christmas dinner! I may be biased but my mums Christmas dinner is the best Christmas dinner ever. We really go to town..turkey, roast potatoes, stuffing, pigs in blankets..YUM.

I am so excited for Christmas and hope you all are too! Let me know if you do this tag!

Clinique Deep Comfort Body Lotion | Review

  






I don't know about you guys, but during the winter months, I suffer from really bad dry skin! My skin feels dry and tight, my face and hands feel rough. It isn't obvious to other people, but I can feel the difference.
 I use body moisturisers all year, but during the summer months I like to use light, gel like moisturisers particularly the Body Shop Sorbets which I love and have in all different scents. However during the colder months I need something much thicker and richer to really give my skin the moisture it needs. Which is where the Clinique Deep Comfort Body Moisture comes in.

I received this at the beginning of October and have been using it ever since. It is suitable for all skin types, contains Vitamin E to protect against environmental irritants and also Shea Butter to leave skin soft and smelling lovely.

The cream is very silky, light although really helps the skin feel moisturised and nourished. It absorbs within minutes and doesn't leave behind any tacky residue. At £20 it can be at the higher end for some peoples budgets, but a little product really goes along way!

 I love using this during a pamper evening, really smothering my skin in this after a shower, then putting on my comfiest pjs before climbing into bed with fresh bedding and settling down to Netflix...now who doesn't like the sound of that, seriously?! 

There are a range of products in the Deep Comfort range, including a body wash, a body lotion with a pump, a body butter and a hand & cuticle cream.

Have you tried anything from the Deep Comfort range? What is your favourite winter body moisturiser? 




Zoeva Rose Gold Luxury Set | Review.

   





It is only since blogging, that I have bothered with makeup brushes. Before that I used to either use my fingers, or sneak into my Mum' room and use hers. I know, how bad is it that I didn't have any but my Mum did. The shame..

The first makeup brushes I bought were from Real Techniques and I love them, but for months I had been lusting over the Zoeva brushes for so long, and vowed that one day I would own some. Well that day has come! It all started one rainy, cold day whilst shopping online, bored. I know never a good combination but whilst ordering some Christmas presents, I just happened to stumble across the Zoeva website..I didn't type it in myself. Honest. I then happened to add the most gorgeous looking brushes ever to my online basket, and before I knew I knew it..my bank details had been entered and they were MINE. I don't know how this stuff happens, but it happens all the time, pfft!

Considering they are coming from Germany, I didn't expect shipping to be as quick as it was! I ordered them on the Sunday, and they were in my very eager, excited hands by Thursday!
The brushes were so well packaged, they came in a box, filled with inflated plastic sheets and each brush was individually wrapped. They also came with a fabric pouch and a sleek leather clutch. 

The set comes with 8 brushes, 5 face brushes and 3 eye brushes:
  • 106 Powder: Apply loose and pressed powder.
  • 102 Silk Finish: Apply and blend foundation.
  • 110 Face Shape: Contour the face shape with cream and powder products.
  • 127 Luxe Sheer Cheek: Apply powder blush.
  • 142 Concealer Buffer: Apply and blend concealer.

  • 227 Soft Definer: Softly blend and smooth eyeshadow.
  • 231 Petit Crease: Accentuating and blending into the crease.
  • 317 Wing Liner: Detailed eyeliner strokes and perfect wing.


The brushes are hand crafted designed with rose gold ferrules and matte handles, engraved at the bottom with the brush number, name and the brands quote 'Colour.Love.Makeup'. All the brushes come with both, high quality natural hair and synthetic taklon bristles, so they can be used with powder and cream based products. 

I have completely fallen in love with these brushes! Not only do they look amazing, they make applying makeup a dream and they have absolutely no fall out when washing them.
They are £55 for the set, which works out at not even £8 a brush (depending on your currency)!!

Have you tried Zoeva? What do you think of their brushes? 


Amsterdam | P&O Cruises.








Hello guys!

So last week myself, Aaron, my mum and brother all travelled to Amsterdam for a couple of days. We booked through P&O Cruises, which involves travelling overnight to Amsterdam, having around 6-7 hours in Holland, before sailing back overnight. We decided to pay for a hotel for the night, so we could have an extra day in the capital. Which i'm so glad we decided to do!

Firstly, the ferry we travelled on was literally like a mini cruise ship, nothing like the ferry I remember from being a child and going to the Isle of White. It had cinemas, casinos, bars, restaurants and a few duty free shops as well. It was huge. The cabins weren't huge but you literally went in there to sleep and that was it. We opted for the all-you-could-eat buffet at night, as we hadn't had a great deal to eat that day and the food was great. They have different themes each night, so on the way there it was Indian, and on the way home it was Chinese. They had other dishes on incase you weren't a fan of the themed menu, but we all did so that was a bonus! Drinks were also included, soft and hot drinks. Alcoholic drinks were extra.

One thing I was not a fan of was being woken up at 6A.M by a loud speaker phone announcing that we would be arriving in Rotterdam shortly. I literally threw myself out of bed and got ready, before heading to the on-board starbucks and ordering a large hot chocolate and croissant to wake myself up. I did nod off for on the coach from Rotterdam to Amsterdam (which is included in the price) which was inevitable really..I am NOT a morning person. 

Once we arrived in Amsterdam we headed straight to our hotel to drop off our bags, We decided to walk to our hotel, which was only about a 25 minute walk, as to get our first proper look at the city. I never realised how many canals where actually in Amsterdam! I knew it had them, I just wasn't expecting so many. The buildings and surrounding areas were lovely, so many gorgeous houses overlooking the canals.

Our first stop was the Anne Frank House. I've wanted to visit there for ages, so I was determined to go. The que was HUGE, but we got to the front pretty quickly. I can't describe the feeling walking through the house, there were diary entries written on the walls and pictures of how the house will have looked, and in what was Annes bedroom there were still pictures up that she had stuck there, from magazines! It was completely surreal and you can't believe that it actually happened. I know we did about it in school, but actually being there was a whole other world. It is definitely an emotional experience. I can't recommend it enough!

After finishing in the museum, we booked to go on a Canal Cruise, which is something my mum was really excited for. We nipped to the supermarket before stocking up on treats and a bottle of summin' special ;) 
We were given a tour of all the historic sights in Amsterdam, e.g. the world's narrowest house which is actually only 2m wide! How you would fit furniture in, is beyond me! We then were shown the Red Light District which was..an experience! If we had more time in Amsterdam I definitely would have explored this area more. People believe it to be quite a seedy area, when it actual fact it was just as stunning as the rest of the City.

On our second day we just explored the City a little more, stopping off for breakfast and a warm drink. It was freezing, i'm so glad I decided to take warm jumpers and my scarf. I would definitely recommend walking around Amsterdam, nothing is that far away that you can't walk there. You could also travel around by bike, which is how pretty much everyone gets around! The bike riders there are crazy so be careful. Stay out of the bike lanes and stay alert, some of them wouldn't think twice about clipping you! After stopping off in some tourist shops, which has to be done, we got back onto the coach which picked us up at 5p.m. 

I'd definitely recommend Amsterdam as a place to see! There are so many bars, restaurants and museums to see. I will definitely go back and hope to visit a few more places.

We arrived back home on Friday morning at about 9, which wasn't such a shock to the system. Not great, but hey, an improvement on 6!

I would definitely recommend the P&O Cruises as a way of travelling to Amsterdam, a lot less stressful than the airport and you can have a wander about the bars and duty free, without being restricted to a plane. 
There is currently an offer on at P&O for buy one get one free. So two of you can travel for just £75!! A complete bargain if you ask me. If you'd like to do the same as us and stay an extra night in Amsterdam, just find yourself a hotel for the night and voila. It doesn't cost any extra to come back on the ferry a day later. 

Have you been to Amsterdam? Did you enjoy it? 
    

Izabelle Hammon Beauty Launch.

   








Last Sunday was super busy and I spent the entire day in Manchester City Centre. I met up with the extremely lovely Rachel (Lost In Lipstick) and our first stop was Professional Beauty North at Manchester Central and it was C-RAZY. So many people and stalls, I felt a little panicky at one point but calmed myself down and enjoyed the experience. We then headed to Almost Famous, a gorgeous burger place and oh ma god..they are absolutely delicious! I definitely recommend going there if you are anywhere near the Northern Quarter of the city. Our last stop for the day was a launch party hosted by Izabelle Hammon, It was every girls dream if you are into nails and nail art, we were given a box to fill up of different nail wraps, stickers, nail art pens and studs to take away with us and try them at home ourselves, a real DIY manicure, which I took full advantage of.

We were also given a masterclass by professional nail technicians, showing us how to achieve different looks 'monochrome, embellished..there was something for everyone. Via their website here you can create all the different looks from your own home, super easy. I'm definitely going to be practicing so expect a few nail art posts popping up on my blog!

The event was held in the gorgeous Midland Hotel, in a beautiful private room hosting a photobooth, a pick & mix table and nail art tables. There was also a section where you could get colour matched to an eyebrow palette by Christian Beauty.

I had a lovely day and picked up some amazing goodies! I love attending events like these. it's an amazing way to meet new people and be introduced to new brands..some which you grow to love!!

Are you a fan of events? Which has been your favourite of 2014 so far? 

Meet The Trends | Clinique Ambassador.









As well as being invited to attend the Meet The Trends event in Manchester, I was also asked to be the ambassador for Clinique! I got to go for a personal consultation with the team at the Arndale store, trying new products and getting a makeover. 

The team were really welcoming and introduced themselves before explaining what I could expect from the consultation and a little history of the brand. I haven't tried anything from Clinique for years so it was a good way to try the latest products and add some to my Christmas wishlist..Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush, here's looking at you! 

First I had a consultation all about my skin, my problem areas, the kind of breakouts I have ect. They then matched me up to my recommended skincare. One thing I never knew about Clinique is that, after your consultation and purchases, they will ring you within 2 weeks to see how you are getting on with your new products and if there is anything you could change. I've never known this from another brand so think it is a really nice touch.

Whilst having my skin tested, I got to try the new Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush and it was love at first use. They used it on the back of my hand along with the foaming cleanser and my skin felt amazing afterwards, Brighter and smoother. 

I then got to try some of the new makeup releases including the new Chubby Stick Intense Moisturizing Lip Colour Balms. I tried a deep berry shade in 'Broadest Berry' and it is one of the most nourishing lip balms i've tried. It had the perfect amount of pigmentation and hydration without being tacky or slippy. 

After being pampered and having free roam of the department to take some pictures, I was lucky enough to receive a goodie bag worth over £100* some of the products I am planning on including in my Christmas Giveaway, so keep your eyes peeled.

The private consultation has definitely changed my perception of Clinique, I had always presumed it was for a much older audience but after seeing all the products they have to offer for every age range and skin type I have had a complete change of heart and now have a list as long as my arm of all the things I want!

Are you a fan of Clinique? What would you like to see up for grabs in my giveaway? 

Meet The Trends | Manchester Event.

    Displaying 31893 MA Meet the Trends A3 Poster_AW (1).JPG

I received an email the other day from the lovely ladies who work in PR at Manchester Arndale, about a very exciting fashion and beauty event 'Meet The Trends'. It is a Fashion Showcase where 30 retailers will be showing you their fashion must-haves for Autumn 2014. There will also be beauty pop-up shops located inside the Arndale, including Clinique, Bumble & Bumble, Ojon, Smashbox, Boots No 7, Paul's Hair World and Supercuts. All of which will be demonstrating their latest products and offering advice and mini makeovers to visitors. 

There will be a show every 30 minutes, and after each show you are in with the chance to win £100, to spend on the latest trends!! Simply collect an envelope at the end of each show containing a number to be in with the chance to win.* 

*The winning number will be displayed at the end of each show and the winner will need to go to the retailer and collect their prize at that time. 

The key fashion trends will be:

  • The CheckList: Stand out check prints in monochrome, tartan prints and luxurious houndstooth.
  • New Vintage: Think.. faux fur, full on glamour and chic vintage shapes.
  • Berry Blaze: Mulberries, scarlet shades and raspberries. This A/W is all about the berries!
  • Mirror Metallics: Ramping up the glitz and glamour, they will be showcasing all the mirrored shade to dazzle day or night.
The Manchester Arndale Street Team will also be out and about in the city centre hunting stylish shoppers to bag special V.I.P invites and secure a special treat and the best seats in the house on the FROW. 

The event will take place on both Friday the 10th October and Saturday the 11th, the showcases will be running from 12-6p.m in the Exchange Court. 

To keep up to date with all the news and updates regarding the Meet The Trends, follow Manchester Arndales Twitter page @manarndale

I hope to see some of you guys there! Which trend are you most looking forward to this season? 


*Sponsored Post. 





The Autumn Edit.

   






As we are heading into October and Autumn is well underway, I thought I would give you a rundown of all my favourite ways to update my makeup bag for the new season.

Foundation:
Summer and Spring is all about achieving skin that is dewy and glowy, whereas in the Winter for me, it's time to bring out the matte foundation. I picked up Rimmel Match Perfection | SPF 18 last Autumn and I love it. It is matte without being cakey, it still looks really natural. 

Blush:
In Summer the only blush I wear is one with a cream formula. I feel they look the best and last the longest during the warmer months. However during A/W I revert back to my much loved powder blushers, particularly this one from MAC in the shade Stay Pretty. It is part of the Pro Longwear blush and is described as a 'Light, Bright Blue Pink' which it definitely is. I only apply the tiniest amount of this to the apple of my cheeks, just to give me a hint of colour.

Eyes:
During A/W I go a little more daring with my eyes, tending to use my Mac Autumn palette, that I put together. They are all coppery, red and purple shades. Perfect for the winter months. I have a full post on the palette and all it's shades here.

Lips:
My favourite way to update my makeup during A/W is definitely the products I put on my lips. I would wear berry and red lips all year if I could. I feel like I suit dark shades quite well, as I have dark hair and a pale complexion. My favourite at the minute is Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Stick in Raplumsel. It's a gorgeous glossy, berry colour. Other shades quite similar is the Revlon Lip Butters in Raspberry Pie and Lollipop. Both gorgeous berry shades, whereas Lollipop is a little more pink.
My all time favourite lip product for Autumn and Winter is Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in Glam Plum Fulham. Which is a very deep plum shade.
Red lips is one of my favourite lip looks, and a recent purchase that has fast become my go to red lip product is Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet in Hot Pepper, a gorgeous matte red. It's so easy to apply and feels really nourishing on the lips, even though it is seriously matte, it isn't cakey at all. I'm definitely going to be picking up more shades from the range.

Are you a fan of Autumn/Winter? How do you update your makeup bag? 

Fight Cancer With Fashion| Blogger Event.










Last Wednesday I was lucky enough to attend the #FightCancerWithFasion charity event, hosted by Branded Lab PR. Myself and lots of other Manchester bloggers spent the evening shopping, eating cupcakes and drinking delicious cocktails. What more could a girl need/want?!

There was a huge clothes sale featuring lots of great brands with prices ranging from £1-£5, all proceeds going to charity! I couldn't think of a better reason to buy clothes. Rachel and myself picked up quite a lot between us..oops.

There was also a makeup artist there to show us some tips & tricks and samples of the Smug Drinks, which are all natural, health boosting drinks and they were delicious! We were also lucky enough to receive a goody bag each, featuring a gift voucher, a lip balm, sweets and also a full sized bottle of Smug Drinks in Orange & Passionfruit.
 I had a lovely time and we raised a total of £416.13! Well done guys :)

   

Soap & Glory | One Heck of A Blot.

  





I am a huge fan of the Rimmel Stay Matte Powder, but I have been using it for that long, that I just fancied a change. I'm also really annoyed with it's packaging, the flimsy plastic lid is just a no go, i'm sick of it falling off or snapping! I had heard great things about the Soap & Glory powder, One Heck Of A Blot so decided to pick it up on a trip to Boots a couple of months ago, and give it a go.

One Heck Of A Blot is a finely milled, translucent mattifying powder which is housed in retro looking, black plastic packaging. However this plastic is far from flimsy! It is really sturdy and durable, which is good for carrying on a daily basis in the bottom of your bag. It also comes with a powder puff inside, which i'm never a fan off so don't tend to use, and a large mirror in the lid which is great for touching up on the go.

The pan is embossed with the word 'Powder' and a few stars which I love! it just adds that bit of something special to what could be a pretty boring looking piece of makeup, although it disappears after a few uses. In the pan it looks ghostly white, with a slight yellow undertone, once applied it suits all skin types and tones. 

I apply this with a normal powder brush and apply it on my chin and t-zone first, before dusting a slight amount over my whole face. You could go very heavy handed with this product, and it would still look untraceable. It leaves a lovely velvety, smooth finish to the skin which is always a bonus. 
I've recently been suffering from a little bit of dry skin along my nose and on my forehead, and the powder doesn't cling to it at all! 

I have to say that this has fast become my favourite powder!! Yes it is a little more pricey that the Rimmel version but you definitely get better quality. Soap & Glory claim that the One Heck Of A Blot is 'Amazing, Addictive and Invisible'..I couldn't agree more!

Have you tried any makeup products from Soap & Glory? What is your favourite? 

A Day In Chester.

  











It isn't very often that Aaron and I get a day off together, so when we do, we like to make the most of it. At the beginning of the month, we decided to go to Chester for the day. Neither of us had been before, so we were really excited to see what the city had to offer!

We arrived at Chester at about 11o'clock, parking at the racecourse car park, which is only about a 5 minute walk from the city centre. We had a look around a few shops, before heading over to Grosvenor Park.

Grosvenor Park is beautiful! It is a typical Victorian layout with sweeping lawns, statues and ornamental shrub beds. It was busting with colour and people. Another thing about this park is that there are squirrels..EVERYWHERE. I even managed to get a few up close pictures of them, so cute. 

Past the park is the canal, which was yet again, beautiful. There were people enjoying boat rides and rowing boats along the water and all the cafes along the water side were filled with people. 
I would love to buy a house overlooking the canal, they were gorgeous and it would be lovely to sit out in your garden and enjoy the view.

We decided to have a look on Trip Adviser for recommendations on where to eat, and one restaurant that was constantly raved about was Hickory's Smokehouse, an authentic American barbeque. When we arrived we were told we would have to wait a table, but that we could sit at the bar and enjoy a drink whilst we waited..ermm..yes please!! 
There were so many amazing choices to chose from that I really struggled to decide. I was swaying towards the alcoholic slushies, although it didn't state which alcohol or flavoured slush it was! The lovely barman told me it was watermelon slushie, with In-house ginger infused Buffalo Trace bourbon and vanilla. I was a little wary at first, but he kindly offered me a sample, and oh ma gawww, it was amazing!!!! It was so refreshing and delicious. Aaron decided to opt for a Jack Daniels Honey and Ginger Beer, which he said was nice but strong! 

We were quickly seated at our table, where we were given popcorn and a giant glass bottle of water to enjoy whilst we waited for our food to arrive. I had the Southwest chicken skewers in smokey bbq sauce, with fries and slaw. Whilst Aaron had the half slab of Kansas Style 'BBQ Glazed' Spare Ribs. Both were amazingly yummy, and we both agreed we would definitely be returning to Hickory's,

Leaving with our bellies full, we wandered back into town having a look in a few more shops before decided to head on home. Chester is definitely one of the most beautiful and peaceful cities I the UK that I have been to. It had a range of high street and high end shops, lots of bars, cafes and restaurants. I think next time we visit Chester we will book a hotel and stay overnight!

Have you been to Chester? What did you think of the city?