Thursday, 30 June 2016

Purple & Bronze Halo Smokey Eye | Make-Up Tutorial

Hello again! A slightly different post from me today- a video! I know I haven't created any content for my YouTube channel for many months but recently I've really missed the process of filming and editing. I've also had quite a few ideas for videos popping into my head and in particular make-up tutorials. These aren't the type of videos I have usually filmed for my channel before and I'm not really too sure why as I love watching them and I love doing my make-up off camera in my day-to-day life. I'm also constantly pinning different looks on Pinterest to try out to break me away from my beloved neutral tones both on the eyes and lips. 

For this look that is now on my YouTube channel for you to watch here, I wanted to create a really warm toned smokey eye with my Zoeva Cocoa Blend eyeshadow palette that I've been playing with off camera for about 6 months. It was a gift from my brother and sister-in-law for Christmas and I truly love it so much. It's my go-to palette when I want to warm up my eyeshadow and add a bit of glamour with the seriously creamy and pigmented metallic shades. If you haven't already tried out this palette (which is also great value for money at £18!) I highly recommend you pop it in your basket or on your birthday or Christmas list. 

I'd love it if you gave my video a watch and left a comment (say that you've come from my blog!) and if you are a YouTube fan like myself, subscribe to my channel so you know when I next upload. Spoiler alert: It's next week!

P x

Saturday, 11 June 2016

The Body Shop's New Piñita Colada Range | Review

I've been a big fan of The Body Shop for many years now. I actually had my make-up done when I was 16 for my prom in one of their stores and I loved the look they did for me. Since then I've tried quite a few of their products and I can't think of one off the top of my head that I didn't like. The Body Shop is always one of the stores I tell people to go to if they want to buy me or someone else something for a birthday or for Christmas because there truly is something for everyone. 

When I saw what their latest release was I was so excited because it really is and will be the perfect addition to our summer beauty routines. Pina Colada's are also my all-time favourite cocktail so I had to give it a go. I bought the body butter and cream body scrub as a set in store when I was in London celebrating my birthday for £16. This is such a great deal and one that I would tell anyone interested in the range to pick up because the value and savings are fantastic. In the set, you get full size pots of the two products which retail separately at £15 for the scrub and £14 for the body butter. So depending on which one of the two you wanted, for a £1-2 more, you can get both and save £13! It is seriously a no-brainer and I really hope you are able to grab one of these sets! Another great bonus I received was that I was given £5 off my total for my birthday as part of their loyalty card scheme. So if it is your birthday this month, pop into store with your card and your products and you can make even more of a saving!
Now onto the products themselves, I'll start with the order that I would use them. As I'm getting back into my tanning routine, a good and abrasive body scrub is essential to get rid of dead skin before tan and left over tan when it's time to re-apply. Even if you aren't into fake tan, a good body scrub is great to have on hand anyway during the warmer months to help our bodies look and feel fabulously soft. The interesting thing about this Exfoliating Cream Body Scrub from the Piñita Colada range is that is a different formula to what I have used before. You can usually find salt and sugar body scrubs very readily now and whilst they are great, they can sometimes be a little too abrasive for some of us. I don't have particularly sensitive skin but I do like how this body scrub is very gentle on the skin and the creaminess of the formula seems to nourish as well as efficiently remove the dead skin. I think this body scrub is a great alternative to the traditional ones and of course it smells PHENOMENAL. The Body Shop absolutely nails scents in their body products so it's no surprise but seriously if you haven't smelt it yet, get to a store now! 

The Body Butter is equally wonderful. The Body Shop are well known for these products and they have such a variety of scents available that even if you aren't loving this range, there will definitely be one you do love. This product glides onto the skin like a dream and doesn't take ages to absorb either. On a day to day basis, I am not a fan of body butters/creams/lotions that take an age to sink in and having to walk around with my legs and arms out like a starfish. What I love about this product is that it is much creamier and fluid than other body butters I have tried from The Body Shop. Sometimes with body butters, I find I need to warm it up in my hands to get it to really spread evenly especially on the fronts of my legs where I do have particularly dry skin. This body butter doesn't need that at all which makes it great for quickly applying if you are in a rush and need a quick fix. The scent also lingers on the skin wonderfully so you'll be smelling sweet for hours. Great if you forget to sprits some perfume!

There are also 2 other products available from the range; a shower gel and a body sorbet. These could be even better for travel as they come in bottles and tubes rather than tubs. The body sorbet is also a much fresher and lighter boost of moisture which might be more suitable for warm and more humid climates. So if you have a holiday coming up, it might be worth popping these in your case. 

I hope you enjoyed reading this post, let me know what you think of this range and also what your absolute favourite products are from The Body Shop! To find more information about the range, click here.

P x 

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

What I Got For My Birthday | 2016

So a few weeks ago, I celebrated my 23rd birthday. As I've got older, I've become much more relaxed with celebrating and with what gifts to ask my family for. When I was a teenager, I used to write a rather lengthy and comprehensive list of gifts and then I'd delegate them to different family members. It was my sure-fire way of getting everything I wanted. As I typed that last sentence, I realised how much of a brat that made me sound. I'm not, I promise! Now that I'm in my twenties, I get very lazy about my birthday and this year was no different. I had no list and no ideas about what I wanted. All I really wanted was to spend time with my family and boyfriend and go out for nice meals.

However, my chilled out vibes were not appreciated by my family and boyfriend. As I didn't have a list or express any desire for anything for my birthday, they had no idea what to get me. Nevertheless, they didn't disappoint; I was still extremely spoilt by them and I'm very grateful for everything they got me. 
A few days before my birthday I was talking to my brother on Whatsapp and he asked me if I had any ideas. I was also scrolling through some of the blogs that I read and it sparked an idea of some books that I wanted to read. I reeled off a few of the titles in a message to him and he replied saying he had placed an order on Amazon. These were Tyler Oakleys book 'Binge', Amy Poehler's book 'Yes Please' and Sophia Amoruso's '#Girlboss'. I didn't think anything more of it until the Amazon parcel came to my house and it was extremely heavy! When I came to open it, he had ordered all of the books I had suggested! I was gobsmacked. I was only expecting to receive one or two of them at most! So needless to say, my reading list is looking rather well stocked for quite a while! 
Most of my family and friends know that I am a make-up obsessive so I usually get something beauty-related for my birthday (and Christmas, too!) which is never a bad thing in my books. I actually got quite a variety of beauty goodies for my birthday this year. In addition to the books, my brother also got me the Sleek Solstice Highlighter Palette. This absolutely gorgeous highlighter quad has been doing the rounds of both beauty blogs and beauty YT channels. I'm obsessed with highlighting my skin at the moment so when I saw this amongst my books, I was extremely excited and used it straight away. Spoiler alert: this highlighter is so bright, I'm sure Tim Peake can see it all the way from the International Space Station. 

I am also waiting for another gift to arrive from my Mum. She usually always knows what to get me for my birthday but this year she was really stuck. However this was only until we were watching QVC beauty (which we do quite regularly) and the presenters were talking about some Tarte products. I piped up and said I really liked the look of the new Tartelette in Bloom 2 eyeshadow palette that I've seen a few of my favourite YouTubers rave about. There and then she ordered it from the QVC website but it is currently on a wait list so it could be anything up to 3 months until this beauty arrives on my doorstep. My Dad gifted me a MAC gift card because I've been banging on for months about how I want to buy myself some MAC make-up. It seems whenever I go into a MAC store, I have every intention to buy something but I get so intimated by the selection of products and the staff never really seem too willing to help at all. Does anyone else feel like that? I'm going to do the smart thing and save my gift card for when I have a good list of products that I've researched and feel confident in going in and buying in one fair swoop. If you are well-versed in MAC, what are your favourite products? Let me know!

Whilst I was in London celebrating my actual birthday with my boyfriend, I did also treat myself to some Soap & Glory goodies. I picked up the Thick & Fast Flash Extensions Effect Mascara, Kick Ass Concealer Crayon and the Sexy Mother Pucker Extreme Lip Plumper. I am still giving them a good road test but they will definitely feature on my blog soon. 
Now I'm not going to be talking about every single gift I was given because this post would be very long and potentially very boring for some of you. So I will finish off this post with some of the gifts that my boyfriend got me. He said that he really struggled with what to get me but I think he did a great job and I loved every single one. I'm a big Kardashian/Jenner fan and I had often mentioned that I wanted a Lumee phone case that they all have. However, I didn't think I'd mentioned it enough that he thought to get it for me and when I unwrapped it, I screamed and instantly sent a picture of it to my friend Emily. She's also a Kardashian fan. I'm so happy with it and I love being able to take good selfies when its dark. He also got me Cards Against Humanity which is a seriously offensive but hilarious game that I have been desperate to get my hands on and play for MONTHS. I've even watched game plays of it on YouTube just to feel part of a game! I'm so excited to play this with my friends because we all have a similar dark sense of humour. However, I don't think this will be making an appearance at Christmas as I don't think my Nan & Grandad would approve. 
I hope you have enjoyed this post and seeing some of the things I got for my birthday. I'm so grateful to my family and boyfriend for all of my lovely gifts- I'm a very lucky girl. If it was your birthday recently, leave a comment and let me know what you were gifted!

P x 

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Look Good Feel Better Brush Review

My make-up addiction does not just include the products I put onto my skin, but also what I put them on with. Over the years I have amassed quite the make-up brush collection and am always on the look-out for ones that could trump my current favourites. However, they are all my favourites really and I love experimenting and finding different uses for them than what they may have been originally designed for. My collection compromises of mostly Real Techniques and Zoeva brushes, however I had heard about another make-up brush brand that has a slightly different background.
Look Good Feel Better is the only worldwide cancer charity that provides practical support for women struggling with the side effects of cancer. They have been hosting workshops and masterclasses since 1994 and to date have helped provide support for nearly 114,500 women in the UK. Their workshops and masterclasses are free to attend and feature a specially-designed routine that teaches basic skincare and make-up techniques to help cancer patients look good and feel better. In order to support the charity, Look Good Feel Better work with other companies who provide financial support, product donations, professional expertise and more. To see a full list of these companies, click here.

In order to support the charity in another avenue, Look Good Feel Better developed a 12-piece professional quality brush set alongside the expertise of brush specialists Bespoke Europe. They are hand-made with super-soft taklon bristles which make them allergy-free, cruelty-free and suitable for sensitive skin. The best part about them is that with every sale of a brush or set, a 8-12% donation goes straight to Look Good Feel Better.

I have bought 3 Look Good Feel Better brushes over the last few months and I absolutely adore them. My first purchase was the Angled Contour Brush, followed by the Angled Blending Brush and then my most recent addition has been the Powder Brush. The quality of these brushes across the board is phenomenal for the price and they have become my favourite ones to use for certain steps in my make-up routine.
The Angled Contour Brush is my favourite for applying and blending contour and cream bronzers. The bristles are densely packed enough that you can control the placement of the product and soft enough that buffing product into the skin is extremely comfortable. I don't have particularly sensitive skin but I can imagine that for those with sensitive skin (whether you've had cancer treatment or not), this brush is extremely comfortable to work with and feels very luxurious. The cut of the bristles is also very good for keeping contour or bronzer exactly where you want it with the longer bristles can help blending it seamlessly into the skin.
The Angled Blending Brush was a real experiment for me when using it. I believe it was designed to blend eyeshadow in the crease but I couldn't make that work for me. However, I was not deterred on finding a perfect use for this brush and I tried it out with blending my concealer as I felt that the densely packed bristles would help buff product into my skin without sheering it out too much. My oh my am I glad I tried this out, it's such a perfect match for me. The softness of the bristles also helps to ensure that I do not pull at the delicate skin around my eyes.

The Powder Brush is my newest addition and I actually cannot stop touching it. As the bristles are longer, there is slightly more movement in the brush as you use it and it glides over the skin like silk. I've lost count how many times during the writing of this blog post I have picked up this brush just to stroke it.
When it comes to the maintenance of these brushes, the quality of them shows when you wash them. I use either baby shampoo or Dr. Bronner's hand soap to clean my brushes and these lathered nicely and didn't lose their shape at all when they dried. As with all brushes, be careful to not get soap or water in the base of the bristles as this can soften the glue and they will start to shed.

I would highly recommend Look Good Feel Better brushes to anyone looking for some new make-up brushes as they help a great charity who provide invaluable support to thousands of women and the quality of them is fantastic. The brushes are available from selected Boots stores and online,, and I purchased two of these brushes from TK Maxx and I was curious to find out whether the charity still receive a donation when their brushes are being sold at a lower price than the RRP. I emailed the company about this and they responded the very next morning that reassured me that the charity receives from the initial purchase of any item no matter where they are being sold. Therefore if you are a TK Maxx lover like me and see these brushes for sale, you don't have to hesitate about buying them. TK Maxx have essentially made the donation for you and you get to take home professional quality products for an even more affordable price.

If you'd like to learn more about the charity, their workshops or the make-up brushes, you can click here. International make-up artist Caroline Barnes features in a video for LGFB where she introduces the collection and the best way to use them which you can view here.

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on some of the brushes from this collection and the great work the charity does in supporting women with the side affects of cancer.

P x

Thursday, 2 June 2016

When Customer Service Is Done Right | Liz Earle

If you follow me on Twitter, you would have seen that extremely flattering photo of myself looking slightly more rosy-hued than normal. What had happened to my skin was a result of a reaction to Liz Earle's Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, a product I had my using almost every day for about two months. Although my skin looks otherwise, it was not sore to the touch or tight in any way. There was just incredible heat radiating from my face and red blotchiness all over. To make things somewhat more of a challenge, I had to go out for dinner an hour after I took this photo, so needless to say some heavy coverage foundation was called in to service.


I tweeted the photo to Liz Earle and I didn't have to wait long for a response. The wonderfully professional Hannah requested me to direct message her to discuss the issue, which I did and I was so impressed with how the whole situation was dealt with. As the picture looks much more severe than what it felt like, Hannah was very keen to speak to me and understand how and why this could've happened, especially as I had been using this product almost every day. The next day I spoke to her on the phone and she asked me some questions about the product itself such as the batch number, where I bought it from and how long I have been using it. She then offered to give me a full refund on the product but I politely declined because I truly love the product and wanted to give it one more chance. Completely understanding, Hannah said I could give it another go and if it happened again or similar I would still be able to receive a full refund. The icing on the top of this cake was when Hannah took my details and said she would pop a little something in the post for me as a goodwill gesture for what had happened. How lovely?! Sure enough, a full size bottle of Rosemary & Rock Rose Hand Repair was delivered to my doorstep. It is a lovely product and I'm so grateful. During our conversation, I wanted to reassure her that I was not angry or deterred by the incident and I still want to explore the brand and try other products. More than anything, I was just confused by what had happened because I used the cleanser almost every day. Interestingly, I have continued to use the cleanser and I have had no problems at all.

So why am I writing this blog post? I've seen many YouTube videos or blog posts dedicated to slating a beauty brand for how they deal with a customer query. Now these complaints may be completely warranted as no person nor brand are perfect but as important I think it is to be honest when we have a bad experience, it is equally important to praise a brand and an individual when they provide outstanding customer service. So thank you to Hannah and to Liz Earle for showing how customer service should be done. 

Let me know if you've had great customer service from a beauty brand in the comments below; it's important to highlight great work too! If you are a lover of Liz Earle products, also leave a comment as I'd like to try more from the brand.