Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Event: Paul Mitchell | New Curl Range |

Two weeks ago I was lucky enough to attend my first ever blogging event. I have previously been invited to some others but I was either busy or too nervous to go, so I finally bit the bullet and decided to pop along to Mayfair.

The event was by Paul Mitchell to promote and educate us on their new range for curls. The new products launching include a shampoo*, leave in conditioner*, a beachy texture cream* and a curl definer*, so there is definitely something for everyone to try. They have been formulated  to detangle, fight frizz, define, smooth and hydrate the hair of those with naturally curly hair but can also be used on styled hair. I will be doing proper in-depth reviews once I have tested them all out properly but so far I am loving the two styling products for beachy waves and defined curls.

While I was there I had my hair done by a Paul Mitchell stylist who was so friendly and gave me some great tips on how to style my hair and some more information about a variety of products. I also got some nail art done by Nails by Rosie who I got chatting to and found out that she is from my Uni town of Birmingham - if you are from around that area I recommend you pop to her shop in the Custard Factory as she did a wonderful job.

Finished hair 2 days on
Accent nail by Nails by Rosie with my own varnish Essie's 'Bikini So Teeny'
Everyone from Paul Mitchell was so lovely and friendly plus there were some tasty canap├ęs and cocktails available to enjoy while I learnt about the history of the brand and the development of their different styling ranges (I have my eye on the blonde and sun collections!) I also really enjoyed meeting and chatting to other bloggers at the event, especially Nuala from Dolled Up London who was really lovely and I highly recommend you check out her blog!

I had such a great few hours at the event and can't wait to attend some more if I am lucky enough! Sorry that my pictures are a bit fuzzy, it was dark and they are all taken on the iPhone! xxx
Thursday, 25 July 2013

Origins | Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser |

Origins is one of my favourite brands, and I am slowly working on building up my collection of skincare from them. I was in need of a new face wash for the mornings and this had been on my radar for quite a while so I decided to buy it around a month ago. Since then my skin has changed so much for the better.

Although the packaging is a cute blue colour, the product inside is a clear gel that slightly foams once emulsified. I know foaming face washes are meant to be a bit of a no go but it doesn't foam that much and to be honest it has benefited my skin so much I'm not really too bothered! Ingredients include saw palmetto which helps to inhibit excess oil, salicylic acid which helps to exfoliate the skin's surface and therefore minimise and unclog pores and soothing aloe leaf juice. 

My skin has been so much clearer and even toned as well as oil production now being balanced, although I haven't noticed much difference regarding my pores. I used to have to blot/powder a few times a day but sometimes I can go a whole day without wearing any powder since using this. The only gripe I have with the product is the smell, which I'm really not a fan of. I'm literally so impressed with this product and it has reached holy grail status in my skincare regime. If you have a similar skin type to me I highly recommend you pick this up.

Do you have any favourites from Origins? xxx
Wednesday, 24 July 2013

All Used Up #6

Hey guys, I haven't done an All Used Up post since May and these products have been building up in a bag in my closet so it was definitely time to write up some mini reviews and chuck them! I've managed to use up quite a lot of body care over the last few months with a few face and hair products too. Click on the product names listed below to be linked to full reviews if I have written them :)


001. Palmers Natural Bronze Gradual Tanning Moisturiser: When I did a post on this last year I hadn't heard much about it but nowadays everyone seems mad for it! I love the strong scent of chocolate, how nourishing it is and that it develops a lovely natural colour which is actually noticeable. Most gradual tanners I find don't really build up much more than a glow, but I like that this actually gives you a proper tan. It has also lasted me ages as it is the same bottle from last year's post! I have since repurchased this but am always open to suggestions if you have your own favourite gradual tanner.  

002. Radox Nourish Shower Gel: At Uni my shower gels were normally picked up in the supermarket when they were on offer for a pound so they normally turned out to be Radox. I liked using this as it did feel nourishing and smelt good, therefore I would repurchase but it isn't a must have for me.

003. Garnier Intensive 7 Days Moisturiser in 'Nourishing Shea Butter': This was a lovely product that did the job well and stuck to it's claims. It was great for in the mornings after a shower when you don't have time to wait for your moisturiser to dry and it made the whole process hassle free. I have also tried the mango version too which I also enjoyed. I would repurchase but in another version - I'm on a mission to try them all! The gel-cream and hand range also look interesting.

004. Simple Invigorating Shower Gel: Matt and I picked this up in the airport last year before we went to Turkey as an alternative to the Original Source Mint shower gel, with the idea that it would be really refreshing to use after a long hot day in the sun. It needed using up as there was about half left but I think it says something that it took me over a year to get round to doing this. I didn't find it invigorating at all and it only had a mild scent of mint, so was a bit disappointing really. For this reason I would not repurchase and stick with the Original Source one instead which I really enjoy using.

005. Sure Rexona Deodorant and Garnier Minerals InvisiDry Deodorant: To me different deodorants don't really make a difference (apart from the Nivea purple one which I hate!) so I normally pick up which ever is on offer. Out of the two I preferred the Garnier but for now I wouldn't repurchase because I'm trying out roll ons.

006. Nip + Fab Pistachio Body Butter (travel size): These body butters have always been on my radar so I decided to bite the bullet and pick up a travel size to see if I liked it or not. It's safe to say I loved this moisturiser so much! The smell is incredible, I liked that it was green (I'm so fickle) and it did a good job of injecting some moisture back into my skin. When I went to Barcelona, I popped this in the fridge and it was amazing to soothe burnt sun kissed skin. I would 100% buy the bigger version of this and I have already repurchased another travel size, this time in the Coconut Latte version.

007. Doctor Duve Lifting and Firming Hand and Decollete Cream: I received this in a Jolie Box along with another sample and really liked it. It was thick without being sticky and sunk in straight away as well as smelling lovely. It is meant to include 'growth factors' whatever they are, and hyaluronic acid which  left my hands smooth and hydrated after applying. However, I wouldn't repurchase because it is really expensive - £79!!!! 


008. Boots Botanics Organic Rosewater Toning Spritz: This is one of my favourite toners as I love the fine spray and how refreshing it is. I would repurchase and am in fact onto my third bottle of the stuff! After the next one runs out I will probably try something new (suggestions please) but it will always be up there in my faves.

009. Vichy Thermal Spa Water: Again this was a sample from a Birch/Jolie Box and I love the handbag size. I didn't tend to use this on my face as although it might feel refreshing it actually dehydrates your skin if you do that but instead I've been using it during the hot weather on my body instead. It was a lovely little product but I don't really see the difference between this and putting some tap water into a spray bottle. I would repurchase but only as a little luxury.

010. Origins Super Spot Remover: This stuff is the best I've found for tackling problem break outs. I tried going without it but after two weeks I cracked and had to repurchase! This little bottle lasted me for months - since writing my review on it its only just run out so I think its great value for money.

011. Soap and Glory Peaches and Clean Cleanser: I bought this after all the hype and tried using this for its main purpose as a cleanser but didn't think too much of it and was a bit let down. However, I tend to leave it on as a mask now for around 5-10 minutes to let the fruit acids brighten up my complexion and it is good for this reason. Sensitive skin will probably not be able to deal well with this though as after 10 minutes my skin does go quite red. I have another bottle from a gift set to use up but after that I wouldn't repurchase as there are better products out there for the money.

012. Dior Eyezone Boosting Super Serum Sample: As far as eye creams go this was quite nice and the sample size lasted me for ages which was a bonus. It is really expensive though and it didn't do anything out of the ordinary so I probably wouldn't repurchase.


013. VO5 Heat Protecting Spray: After religiously using Tresemme's heat protector for years I thought it was time to try something new and picked up this one from VO5. It had a good diffuser which released an even and fine spray onto the hair and smelt lovely too. It is also cheap as chips and left no stickyness or weight in my hair so for these reasons I would repurchase.

Sorry it turned out to be such a long post, it took me ages to write haha! I hope these reviews were useful for you. What have you recently used up? xxx

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Simple Summer Smoothie

Hey guys, I haven't done a recipe post in ages so thought I would ease myself back with something healthy, easy and delicious. My favourite way to have my five a day is in smoothies as they are yummy and it means I can eat more fruit in one go that way - does anyone else find that? When it comes to smoothies I'm normally quite slap dash and throw in whatever, but this particular combination was delicious so I thought I'd share it with you. If you like sweet things this will be right up your street.

* 1 banana
* handful of ice
* handful of strawberries (5-6)
* 1 peach 
* 1 cup of almond milk
* chia seeds (optional)

Put the ice in the blender first followed by your chopped banana. Hull the strawberries and half them and remove the stone from the peach then quarter. Add all of them to the blender. Finally add a generous glug of almond milk. Blend it all thoroughly and add more almond milk if its a bit too thick. Pour into a glass and top with Chia seeds if you would like. 



See, I told you it was easy! Let me know if you try this out by tweeting me or commenting. What is your favourite summer drink? xxx
Monday, 22 July 2013

Where have I been?

It seems like over the past few months I have stopped and started with this blog so many times! I've been really busy and then when I have had a moment of quiet to write a post I either don't have the photos, something comes up or most recently my laptop dies. I thought I'd share little snippets of what I've been doing such as making the most of the sunshine, spending time with friends and family, visiting new places in London, Wireless festival and Matt's graduation (he has a Masters now!) and my first event (post to come soon). I know this post is picture heavy but a picture can speak a thousand words can't it?

A lot of these photos have come from my instagram - if you would like to follow me there too you can find me at lilmisslifestyle. What have you been up to this summer? xxx

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Illamasqua | Lipstick in 'Sangers' |

Illamasqua are a company that I've always loved for their original concept behind their products. I've never had the opportunity to try anything from them before, but when the 50% twitter code came about I couldn't resist purchasing a few bits which had been on my wishlist for a while.

I'm a massive fan of lipstick, in particular red, so this product is right up my street. I wish the packaging was a bit more weighty to make it feel more luxurious but the design of the packaging itself is nice. This lipstick has a creamy formulation, although its not that pigmented and needs a few swipes to build up a nice opaque colour. It leaves a matte finish without being drying in the slightest and stays put for most of the day. The classic red shade (desribed as 'blood red') means it is perfect for all year round and fits in nicely with my other red lip products which are all on the darker side of the spectrum. The pictures I took for lip swatches didn't come out well so I've put one from a recent event I went too instead and my instagram.

I really love this lipstick as I think the quality and the colour are lovely and its been a regular occurrence in my make up bag. I already have more on my list! What is your favourite product from Illamasqua? Would you try this lipstick? xxx

Friday, 5 July 2013

Bourjois Bronzing Primer

First of all, excuse the pictures! My pot was like this when I bought it so doesn't look that pretty for the photos. Secondly, you may have noticed this is my first post in a while. Life got in the way and I have been super busy but I am hoping to get back to my normal routine soon. Now lets get on with the review...

Last year I did a review on the Bourjois Chocolate Bronzer - if you read it you would know that I fell in love. Fast forward a year and there was recently news about a whole Chocolate range being released, which made me really excited! This product in particular intrigued me as there was whisperings that it is a dupe for Chanel's infamous Soleil Tan de Chanel, which I have been lusting after for many months now.

The tub is quite small for the price, but for a fraction of the price of the Chanel version I can't grumble too much. With one colour to suit all it can seem a little daunting in the pot and upon first swatch, as it is not too dissimilar in appearance to milk chocolate mousse (it looks a little orange in my pictures) However, if properly blended, you are left with a subtle glow. If you are as fair as me I would approach this with caution - its quite easy to over do it so use a little at a time, blend well and add more if needed. I normally use my fingers for this but a stippling brush would probably be good too. It has a really soft, silky texture and smells a bit like holidays, so a little different to the chocolate bronzer.

I personally liked this best when I had a touch of a natural tan and used it instead of foundation, but used underneath a foundation or BB cream it brings a warmth to your complexion which looks natural. This also means I've found you use less of whatever base you follow up with, giving a more natural look which is perfect for the warmer months. The bronzing primer definitely lives up to its claims as a smoothing primer, which evens the texture and tone of my skin, however it did little for my pores. It is also meant to mattify which is true to an extent - it definitely doesn't add to the oiliness of my skin but it doesn't seem to keep it at bay either. The longevity is also quite good, but no better or worse than a normal base. I'm not normally a massive fan of primers for this reason as I've only ever found one which really prolonged my make up.

Overall this is a lovely summer product which I will certainly be getting a lot of use out. I'm also interested in the big bronzer they have bought out and the BB Bronzing Cream. Have you tried this product? What is your favourite item from Bourjois? xxx

P.S. This is the first time I've done a 'face' picture as I don't normally like putting my face on the blog, but a hand swatch wouldn't really show this product properly. I hope it's ok (it was also spur of the moment so my hair is still a bit wet!) 

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