Thursday 31 January 2013

Highland Aromatics: Coorie-in Basket Set

 Well hello! My week has not been going to plan as far as my posts and Valentines day posts go, so I thought I would post this review to give you all something nice to read! I hope that later today or tomorrow things will be back on track. Until then, fingers crossed it all goes to plan!

The basket, body butter, soap and bath bomb.
I was oh so excited to receive this because it was a name I had never heard before and I love trying out new things. The packaging alone was so cute and rustic looking. I am a sucker for packaging, especially if you can reuse it. The contents of the basket smelt lovely with a small, sweet smelling bath bomb, small soap and mini body butter. They looked amazing wrapped separately in little pieces of tissue paper. It had beautiful font on the bottle, along with the delicate matching tags. 

I researched the Highland Aromatics only to find that their website is a bit all over the place. A lot of links and tabs lead to nothing at all, with only half their products on the site. I found quite a lot of things produced by them on but because it wasn't the main site it didn't give a proper list of ingredients or information. Also, if you are thinking of buying something of theirs from amazon be aware that the picture is bigger then the product, as many people in the comments were angry about it. What I do know is that they are a family run business for 35 years who are best known for their soaps. Much of the Scottish highland inspires these products and they are environmentally friendly. 

The little bath bomb sunk to the bottom of the bath and disintegrated  into a white pile. To my horror it expelled little bits of lavender and what looked like twigs. before I got in I had to mix the water up to distribute the left over bath bomb which didn't colour the water or give out a smell. I sat in a bath full of plain water while twigs and pieces of foliage floated by. I got out early only to spend five minutes picking bits of the floating matter off me. I was not impressed at all and the bath was very hard to clean afterwards with the bits clogging the drain and sticking to the bath sides.

My bath water. There were bits EVERYWHERE!
I tried the body butter hoping that it would make me forget about the bath incident but it only softened the blow slightly - no pun intended! It wasn't what I was hoping for at all, being thick and hard to make sink into my skin. I had to stand like the statue of Jesus in Rio for ages and flap my arms about to try help dry off. I did notice once it dried in that the smell was really rich with earthy type undertones. It wasn't over powering and the smell stays on for hours after, something more high end products don't always do. 

Beautifully packaged and presented bath bomb.
Lastly there was the little soap. It smells like the body butter and is so moisturising. It left my hands soft and lovely. If I was to go buying it all over again it would be nearly worth it for the soap!

Overall I was very disappointed as I had high hopes for it. However, after looking at their other products I might try again and pick up something else. Maybe their shower gels and other soaps are the things to rave about. 

Have you ever tried Highland Aromatics?

Tuesday 29 January 2013

NOTD: L'oreal Sublime Platine

I had to do a NOTD to tell you all about a nail varnish I picked up on sale in Boots a few weeks ago for only €4, but I think its normally at the €6 mark. Its L'oreal Colour Riche in Sublime Platine 819 and as you can see, its a gorgeous silver that is so eye catching. 

The first time I used it I could not get over how much I kept looking at it and how beautiful it looks on. You will only need one coat of this as it is a more high end product (then what I normally use!) that deserves the name. The brush is wide and easy to use, none of this blobs and painting one nail for 5 minutes business.  This will stay on your nails for about 2 days before it starts chipping. The second time I used it I put on a finishing coat and it lasted me nearly 3 days but I accidentally bit my nail and it started chipping, oh dear. Taking it off is really easy too with one cotton pad soaked in nail varnish remover doing all my nails in one go. 

I have also been eyeing up Barry M's glitter nail paint in Amethyst Glitter that I think would go so well as a top layer with this. I may just pick it up! I would highly recommend having a look through L'oreal's massive nail colour collection and see if anything takes your fancy as these are amazing varnishes and I know I will be getting more of in the future. 

Whats on your nails today?

Monday 28 January 2013

Valentines Day Gifts For Her

It doesn't matter if its a first date or the 20th year you have been together, all girls love to be pampered and given something special. This could be a dinner out for the two of you or a romantic night in. So here are a few things and ideas for your lovely girl with a price range to suit everyone!

Find her favourite sent: I think it is safe to say all women love perfume and have at least 5 favourites! To help you out, why not ask a friend or family member which she likes the most? There a loads of gift sets you can get from perfume shops or in Boots.  YSL Parisienne Gift Set is about €32. Kylie Minogue's Darling Gift Set is a steal of just €12 according to there site and DKNY Be Delicious Fresh Blossom is about €42.

Be cheeky and have fun: Has she read the famous Fifty Shades of Grey book? Why not get her some joke toilet roll? I would laugh! Or if she is a reader then a little funny Don'ts For Wives Book will be sure to get you a bit of a sore head! And to go with a good book I always love a cuppa, this is too cheesy not to add in! The No Sugar Needed Cup! Ugh, I want one ha!

Its all about romance: How about a stay at home dinner cooked by you for the lovely lady? Find a few helpful things on the bbc food/recipes site as it has a great big A to Z and has measurements that I understand! You can make her favourite dishes, pick up some fancy deserts (or make them too!) and light some candles. That is sure to impress her! Dotcom gift shop do some beautiful little candles like these rose ones to set the mood or some lovely glass jars here and here

Careful how you go: A helpful hint for all out there, unless you know your girls tastes and sizes do not go and get her jewellery or clothes. You could end up spending money on something she wont wear or worse yet - you could get her dress size wrong. And depending on if its too big or too small, it might be your last valentines together! So ask one of her friends for help if you are set on getting her a special necklace or those earrings you think she would love. 

Do the cliche: Girls and guys make your lady happy with some chocolates, a teddy or even the classic rose. Its so overdone and bad its good. Go that extra mile and embarrass her (in a nice way!) with a heart or 'be my valentine' balloon.

Always remember: This a one day thing, don't have hang ups if its not perfect or your not buying your girl things that are overly priced anyway! If your spending the day together, lucky you. Watch a film online and make some popcorn. Write her a cheesy but personal love letter or poem. Send her a sweet text and tell her your thinking of her. Its always the thought that counts the most.  

Saturday 26 January 2013

February Blues?

Everyone has heard of the January Blues. That time of year when the rush is over, the money all spent on extravagant last-minute buys, the festive things are packed away for another year, its cold, dark and there is hardly any sun. Its easy to feel a bit down. But I am noticing that more and more people are still feeling this way when Friday next week is the 1st of February. Now that just will not do at all, not if I have a say! So sit back my dears and listen, er, read.

Those silly new years resolutions. You broke them the 2nd of January and its ok. There is an entire year to get back on track. Hell, I still buy fruit to decorate the fridge and table, not to eat! I gave up the walking and have turned to swimming. Maybe have a look into an alternative hobbie/activity/event that you originally planned to do this year if its not working out for you.

Don't feel down about a tight budget. There are loads of things you can do that needs little or no money at all! For instants, those creative types out there why don't you start a blog? Its fun, free and something nice to keep your mind active. Or why not read? You can join your local library for free and there are lots of resources. If all that is not to your taste and your more of the social variety how about volunteering? You can pick hundreds of things from helping elderly neighbours with shopping to fundraising to helping animals to going to your local community centre to help with sessions for a few hours. You will be surprised by how much you enjoy it, make new friends and have something to feel positive about. You might even find yourself wanting to do it long term.

Give yourself a good spring clean: Out with the old and in with the new as they say. Go on, do a big clean out of your bedroom. Throw out rubbish hidden under the bed, sort through shoes, books and clothes and then either give them to family,charity or even try your hand on Ebay. Alternatively you could ask your friends to do the same thing and then meet up and swap items you would like.

Eat yourself happy people: Yes, you heard me right. Spinach is full of folic acid, magnesium, vitamins A and C. It will improve your mood.  Eggs have protein which means you feel full longer and are more alert. Its bursting with omega-3, zinc, vitamins B, D and B12. That ticks healthy teeth, hair and nails off the list for you. Dark chocolate is a treat and releases mood-lifting endorphins while being lower in fat and sugar then milk chocolate. 3 bars I hear you say?! And then lastly Garlic. I promise it wont keep the Cullens away and it is fantastic to help your mood, energy and blood flow. Mmm, yum!

Make lists: Get some paper, do it in your head, blog it, facebook it or email it. Lists are wonderful and I am a big fan. Take time to think about what you would like to do this year. Write down lists of places you want to visit, even if its just pretend. Spend time with your dreams and have a happy page at the end of it to enjoy re reading. I'm not a big traveller so I like to write lists of all my favourite songs and bands I hope to see one day. Of course they will come to play in my living room, only when I invite them and whenever I want....

Enjoy the people you love: You do not know everything about a person, no matter what you think. Take time to go and see that friend that you only really see when in a group and don't talk much. Go visit your grandparents and ask them about when they were young, its stories they love telling and you wont get to hear them always. Tell your neighbours you'll help paint the gate when their doing it in the summer. Being with people, talking, listening and spending time is the best thing you can do. Its 100% free and makes you feel happy. So why sit online all day or on your own between school/college/work when there are people you love right there?

Remember it takes a whole lot more muscles to frown then it does to smile, so smile and I hope everyone will be a little happier today. 

Friday 25 January 2013

Friday Favourites #4

Would you look at that, I'm now nearly blogging a whole month! My oh my, doesn't time fly when you are having fun? I have now Facebook and Instagram to go with it too and hoping to one day enter the world of twitter - but not brave enough yet!

In the next week I will be doing a few blog posts for Valentines day. Yes I know its still January but you have to be prepared! And if you are buying something online it is best to get it ordered as early as you can. Now, let us get on to my favourite things this week!
Mmm, looks good. One please!

Drink: Tesco's Peach Sparkling Water
For just 83 cent you get the best drink on earth that has, would you believe only 9 calories! Nom, I have only just found the Tesco own brand drink but I want to go buy a box full! It is really refreshing and I love how the peach isn't an overpowering taste like some fruit drinks can be. It also has the added benefit of being better for you then coke or other fizzy drinks, yay!

Product: Carmex Soothing Lip Balm
This week my lips have been needing a little TLC because I have a cold. This lip balm is my go to at the moment as they are sore, dry and chapped. I love the original  which has menthol and camphor that has cooling pain relief. Word of warning, avoid the little tubs as its hard to get the product out! 

Film: Django Unchained
Stephen and myself went to see this during the week. It was so good and parts had the whole cinema laughing but it was very sad too as it depicted black slavery and the journey for Django to find his slave wife. I do not take well to anything even slightly upsetting or violent and this was both, ha! Stephen actually wrote up a really good review on it over here which will explain it a lot better then I can! 'It was sad' was all I could say after! Also, a cheeky Instagram photo to the side there showing our tickets. Not too bad considering I couldn't use the app for ages! Sigh, me and new things never work. I break them, this is why I can't have nice things!

Book: The Woman Who Went To Bed For A Year
I have just finished this book and I was delighted by how good it was. I had it on my wish list on amazon (I have a kindle) for ages hoping the price would come down but then Stephens mum lent it to me, Yay! Sue Townsend has written a thought provoking book in a strange way and had me laughing out loud on long rides home. Not something to read if your not a fan of people staring at you mind! If you come across it do read the back and see if its one you can love too. I'll have a review up soon!

This site has some fun things on it but this one post had me taking down notes and committing it to memory! Its 50 Life Hacks to Simplify your World. I did not know paper clips had so many uses! And the how to light a candle without burning yourself is something I am now very glad to know about. I will totally be trying the brownie in a mug too, it looks too good not to!

Game: Plants vs. Zombies
This is an app for phones and you can also play it online. I am loving it right now and it can get addictive! The game is set in your back yard with the zombies starting to arrive over your back fence and slowly making their way to your house. If they enter your house your well, dead. So the aim of the game is to kill them by using different plants which you can get once the sunflowers you plant produce enough sunlight. This game has won over 30 game of the year awards and I can see why. You can check it out on a cool site over here. 

Have a happy Friday everyone and a fab weekend! I'd love to know if you try any of these things or already know and love them.

Thursday 24 January 2013

ASOS Dress


This is a dress that I got from the ASOS Collection in the January sales. It has the most lovely floral print with a dark green background, a crew neckline with a collar and mesh inserts. Some cropped puff sleeves, a  fitted waist and flared skirt along with a hidden zip at the back. It is really the perfect cut for the more curvy girlies like myself. They also do a 'curve +size range' from a uk size 18 and up.

It was originally €60.68 but I managed a steal of just €26.97. ASOS has a 25% off student discount right now for Irish and UK students up until 9am Friday, so get crackin' on and find something lovely for this Spring. To make matters better they do a standard free delivery service worldwide. Now isn't that a little extra happiness in your life? I hate paying for shipping!! Visit them here.

Happy shopping!

Wednesday 23 January 2013

Things I Don't Like

In a very random order and post, I want to list out some of the things I hate. I like lists, sharing thoughts with people and reading other peoples pet peeves as I can relate to a lot of them. So here we go:

Eating with your mouth open:
Oh sweet lord I think this is one of my top most hated things ever. Ever. Ever. I can't begin to explain how much I hate hearing and seeing people do this. I automatically think of the mothers all across Ireland say in unison ''has she/he no manners at all? Their mother must be ashamed.'' If I wanted to know what you were eating I would ask after you finished. My skin is crawling thinking about it.

The word 'moist':
I don't really know why this bugs me. It always gives me a shiver down my spine and makes me think the person who uses it is a bit dirty. Like mould or an old pair of wet runners. Too much Fifty Shades of Grey talk last summer I think.

Wet and mucky shoe laces: 
You know when you have about 10 bags, are late for the bus, weaving through people all over the street, trying to keep your hood/umbrella up and all while talking on your phone and trying to either not kill yourself crossing the road or knock into someone? You get home and realise your shoe lace is undone. And its wet, and mucky from the rain and road? Ewww! I can never look at them in the same way.

The smell of cold soup:
I cannot understand anyone who eats lukewarm or cold soup. The smell nearly makes me sick. Yet when the soup is boiling hot I will be first to dig in with a nice cracker or piece of bread. Go figure.

People who are rude:
I was brought up to the constant chatter of mothers and fathers alike: 'mind your manners' and of course the classic 'manners don't cost a thing'. And I will rarely agree with mine, but on this they are right. A simple thank you, excuse me or sorry is all I ask for on a bus, in the street or shop. Please do not barge past me in a manner which can only be described as unbelievable. Kindly refrain from knocking your bags into me on an otherwise empty street. And try, oh please try to be polite to one another.  

Finding a stain on your clothes:
The amount of times I go to leave the house with a freshly washed top/pair of jeans/hoodie and I see a mark on it. Not a faint one either but a great big white tooth paste stain or a black eye liner mark. And of course lets not forget the tomato sauce or butter smudge. Just. Why?

Cold feet:
I am always cold and have seemingly no blood circulation. But the worst thing is cold feet. It feels like your walking on two ice blocks and I can never get them warm for the rest of the day once they are cold. Cold feet cramp dances around the room at half three at night? Why yes I do partake, thank you for asking.

Psychics and spiritualists:
You will loose all respect from me if you believe in psychics and spiritualists. It is painful when people open a magazine to read their horoscopes and ask what your star sign is. Angels belong on top of Christmas trees not on a deck of cards that you play with. When I was little I was safe in the knowledge that all adults were of sound mind and knew fairy stories from reality. As I got older I became more worried and alarmed by People like 'Psychic Sally' and Derek Acorah. And the people who choose to believe them scare me more. I now know there are thousands of people playing skipping with the line that divides the sane and insane.

Forgetting what your doing:
Anyone ever go to the kitchen only to ask why your there? Read a text and say you'll reply in a second? Put down a book and tell yourself to remember the page number. Leave the oven on too long and burn the food because you got distracted looking for the cup of tea you left down while trying to remember if it was today or tomorrow you were meant to meet your sisters, friends aunt to return the book your currently looking for. Whats that burning smell?... Umhumm. My life, right there. 

Breaking a nail:
No I am not as shallow as the title leads you to believe. I mean it in the 'OH my SWEET JESUS that HURTS LIKE...!!!' way. When you catch it off the side of your jumper or your hair. The throbbing pain is felt for ages and the feeling of your nail having been bent back or forth before it breaks makes my skin break out in goose bumps. Or rag nails, now thats an entirely different post. 

Embarrassing posts on social networking sites:
Just last night I was witness to a cringe worthy Facebook post on my news feed with barely covered sexual innuendos and jokes about some poor girl a guy is seeing. And what really did it? The overly used wink smiley faces and x's. There should be a limit to how many you can use a day, exceed this limit and the computer shuts down as a punishment for 24 hours. We have all done it, but please, does the entire world have to see you tweeting sonnets for your third new girl/boyfriend of the week?

People acting like arses:
Meaning they are normal nice people who have taken it upon themselves to act like an eejit by pretending to be someone they are not. My personal pet hate are people who pretend to know more then they do. Do not carry an enormous book about and tell me you have read all of Dickens and are now onto the 18th century legal system which is truly fascinating. 'But I'm sure you haven't read it?' The look of horror as you calmly say yes to whatever they are spouting on about and say its a hidden passion of yours is worth keeping a camera handy for.

The bed dilemma:
Its freezing out so three blankets go on the bed and the same in hot water bottles. Then its too warm so out sticks a foot. Its cold, back in the foot goes. Then its too warm again, two blankets off. Still warm, one hot water bottle is shoved to the bottom of the bed away from your feet. No its colder then you thought, move down the bed and put your feet on the hot water bottle you just moved. Ah, burning skin, move second hot water bottle away from your side. Now your upper body is cold and your feet are too warm and starting to ever so slightly cook.. This goes on and on and on. 

I hope you are all happy today and have enjoyed the little things in life that drive me crazy!

 What are some of your 'things I don't like'?

Tuesday 22 January 2013

Review: Oh So White Bath Bomb

 Well hello there lovely readers! I have a very exciting review for you, the Lush kind!  I am only able to start doing reviews on these things as there is quite a bit to test out! I got two lovely gift sets from friends for Christmas and also went to their sales to grab some really amazing bargains. Keep an eye out next Christmas as they do an Stephens Day 50% off on most of their stock. 

 This lovely Oh So White bath bomb that is a limited edition Christmas one, so you wont be able to go running to your nearest shop to try it out. However I do think there are quite a few places online that you can still nab one. Try the American Lush site, as I know the UK one isn't stocking them anymore. Ebay might be worth a glance too. 

This bath bomb was reinvented from previous years with a pink surprise inside it. You can fill your bath with warm water and then like a real snow ball, throw the bath bomb against the side of the bath. The white outter shell is thin and will break easily to reveal the pink, fluffy bubble bar mixture fun inside! 

Its something cool to add to your bath time experience thats made with neroli, rose sent and bergamont. You can really smell the rose and hints of something sweet but soft. You get into some really moisturising water but if your a bubbles person you will come away disappointed as the white and pink bubbles that were there while the bath bomb was fizzing away will have disappeared. 

This is one of the less attractive and plainer bath bombs that Lush have, along  with the fact that there are no bubbles is always a bit of a let down. But if you are all about feeling soft and silky after then this guy is for you. For around €4.50 you can get a little fun, lovely smells and pink swirls.

Monday 21 January 2013

Review: Dove/Nivea Deodorants

Hello loveies! For me, finding the right deodorant can be a pain and there are loads of questions floating through my mind when looking at the massive selection in the shops. So here are some that I have been using the past few weeks to answer some of those thoughts!

L-R: Dove 'gofresh', Dove 'natural touch',
 Dove 'invisible dry', 
Dove 'gofresh', Nivea 'sensitive & pure'.
I'm a big fan of Dove, as you can see! All these deodorants claim to have 48 hour protection, but I'm not sure if thats the case. Perhaps 6 to 12 hour, depending on what you get up to. They are also all around €4 or €5, depending on where you pick them up. They say on their bottles that they are ''unique with a 1/4 moisturising cream and vitamin E thats proven to improve the look an feel of underarm skin.''

 The 'invisible dry' has to be my favourite purely because it does what it says! When your rushing in the morning, you don't have time to wait for your deodorant to dry and you end up getting white marks all over your clothes. With this that simply doesn't happen. Magic.

Next there is the two 'gofresh' scents in pomegranate & lemon verbena and grapefruit & lemongrass. Both really do have a 'fresh' scent, but I have to say I am not overly excited about them. If you like that burst of freshness that wakes you up then they are for you. However I find that some cleaning products I use in the bathroom kind of smell slightly similar and its off putting. If I was picking one to buy again it would be the sweeter smelling pomegranate & lemon verbena one for sure. 

The last Dove is the biggest let down. Its the new 'natural touch dead sea minerals'. It sounded fancy and something soft and lovely for my underarms but all it does it cause a mess. Dare to spray it for more then 2 seconds and you have lumps of caked deodorant falling off your skin and ruining any clothes you put on. It doesn't work trying less, letting it dry or even holding it further from you. Nope, it just doesn't work for me. Below, you'll see I've sprayed the same amount of all the deodorants on a black top to try and show you what I mean. The photo is being kind to the 'natural touch' Dove here, but you get the idea. Its redeeming features would be how nice it smells and that if you don't mind it falling all over the place and staining your clothes as you go, it does give a nice soft feel to your skin, more then the other Doves I've tried. I doubt I'll ever be purchasing this again though.

On the left Dove 'natural touch dead sea minerals' 
 is the only deodorant to stain my top.

Last but not least is the Nivea 'sensitive & pure'. This says 'new' on the lid, but I think it's been out quite a while. I love this one with its girly sweet scent that seems to last a little longer then any of the Dove range. I'm a regular buyer of Nivea's 'invisible black and white clear', which is similar to Doves 'invisible dry'. I've  just finished Nivea's 'pearl and beauty' too, which smells almost sickeningly sweet, but has a longer lasting smell.

I hope this has helped you all a little. Until next time, stay smelling good!

Friday 18 January 2013

Friday Favourites #3

My LolCat fix, it's important.
End of the week again in case you didn't know! I'm kind of sad too, it was such a great week and I don't want it to end so fast. I had such an action packed time, bargain hunting, (yes, that does mean haul blogs for you all, YAY!) Catching up with friends, dying my hair (!) and learning loads about using drop box, signing up to instgram and bundles more. I'm slowly but surely getting there. And loving every minute!

Thing: Vitamin C Tablets
January is the month of colds. In fact since early October I have been catching those nasty bugs. My lack of  immune system, grr to you. So a little vitamin C goes a long way to help keep you in tip-top shape. I love Tescos own brand of 30 for under €2. I also an a fan of  Boots own brand, which is only slightly more expensive.

Music: Chasing Rubies by Harry and Alfie
These are two brothers born and bred right here in Ireland. They have been busking in the fair streets of Dublin, gaining fame from their YouTube vidoes. Wow do these lads know how to sing. Give Chasing Rubies a listen, you'll have it on repeat in no time.

Food: Spinach and Ricotta Tortelloni 
Oh nom nom nom. I had this for dinner the other night, along with Tesco Tomato and mascarpone sauce that I had in the fridge. This was about €1.60 and doesn't take 10 minutes to cook. I think its a little healthier then pizza or chips. Ish. 

Thing: Some Great Sales/Reduced Items
All the January sales are still on and I am loving them! I would have thought all the 'good' stuff would have been long gone, but a little walk through A/Wear, HMV and Boots just shows how wrong I was. I also want everyone to know Boots has a lot of make up and skin/body care reduced or half off at the moment because of old stock or just clearance. Go grab some bargains!!

Product: Charity Pot by Lush
I have a teeny tiny sample pot and its another food for your skin product. Its coming up as part of a review I'm doing so watch this space! Its fair trade and 100% of money goes to charity. The trial sized ones are €1 and the bigger pots start at about €9. Doing good and pampering your skin? I'll take that thank you!

This is a non-profit group who give and get stuff for free. You keep the good stuff and pass it on to someone else when you are done with it. Cool huh? There is one of them in so many towns and different countries, just go browse for what your looking for. Heres the Irish link, the American link and the UK link just to name a few. Happy hunting!

My 'Friday Favourites' post is becoming somewhat of a regular occurrence, so I hope everyone is liking them and finding them useful! When I find sales or a fab bargain I will always post it on my Facebook Page so make sure to give it a 'like' to stay updated!

Thursday 17 January 2013

NOTD: Essence Choose Me!

Lots of colours could be matched with this.
Just a quick nail of the day for you all. I can't get enough of this shade at the moment and have been reapplying non-stop. Its Essences Colour and Go range Choose Me! in number 38.

 Its a beautiful and full of glitter deep bluey green colour. You need 2 coats to make it really stand out and get about 3 days wear before it starts to chip. I always put a clear finishing coat on top just to try and make it last a bit longer. Its really easy to take off as well, no scrubbing required! Ignore the silver nail in the middle, I was trying out some of a friends collection and didn't bother to take it off. I think the colours go well together.

Essence is a cheap as chips brand that I have been buying from for ever. You can get yours in Boots, most chemists and Pennys (Primark.)  There are so many shades of nail varnish to choose from and for as little as €2 you would be mad not to try some of them out. I'm a big fan of their eye liner and finishing powder too. 
Candles and a messy basket of earrings!

Have you ever tried the Essence range?

Wednesday 16 January 2013

Have You Heard Of Ultrabalm?

My well loved tin.
Ultrabalm. What can't it do? This is the magic stuff that got Snow White to wake up. Its what inspires Van Persie to score those amazing goals and what makes Four Star pizza taste so darn good! Well ok, it might not do all of that but really its not far off. I recommend it to everyone I talk to. 

This product is from a regular haunt of mine, Lush. They pride themselves on using fair trade and most of their products are vegan and organic. For around €10 you get a 45g tin pot of yellowy, paste-like lovely goodness. This is an all rounder balm, the only thing you need in your bag. Its a very unisex product too, which makes it great for anyone with skin! There is an endless list to what this can do. Use it as a hand cream, to help chaffing, to brighten up tattoos, use as lip balm, on dry skin on your elbows, heels and knees, even in your hair to tame those flyaways. Getting the idea? My all time favourite is treating my hands and feet when they are feeling a bit neglected and maybe dry or sore. Its also amazing on the sensitive flaking skin of a new tattoo.

And if that sounds good to you, then whats in it will seal the deal. It has organic jojoba oil and candelilla wax which is a vegan alternative to bees wax, and rose wax too. As they say, less is more. Its kind of an alternative to petroleum jelly but I think it smells way better, has a nicer texture and well, does more! You only need the tiniest amount, as it melts onto your skin and spreads out. Unlike other balms, this soaks into your skin in no time and doesn't leave a greasy feeling. My skin is quite sensitive and this has never reacted negatively in any way. I've had my now battered pot for over a year and still have a lot left. If I was going out with the bare essentials in my hand bag, then this would be top of the list. Top marks for the delightful people in Lush, making such a fab product! 

Have you ever tried Lush before?

Monday 14 January 2013

I Went Ice Skating

For those who know me and some that don't, the title of this will bring a painful, tear jerking, hold-onto-your-sides kind of laughter to you. Yes I went ice skating. The most clumsy, lack of coordination girl you could possible think of, doubled. Why do this to yourself one may ask? Well, because I hadn't done it in years and unhelpfully forgot how awful I am at it.

This all went down in Dundrum shopping centre. Thank god it was late because there were only about 15 of us on the rink. As I space walked towards the door after putting on my skates, I was reminded of a friends response to me telling him my plans of this. He laughed, in my face. The dear. Asking if I really wanted to show my boyfriend how I awkward am. I have been going out with Stephen over a year now and we live together. There is nothing the guy hasn't seen. Yet I was hesitant of it still. 

In the allocated  time given, I managed a grand total of 1 time around the whole circle. I held onto the side for dear life while trying to pose and look like I was doing fantastically every time Stephen turned round to see where I was. I think my lowest point was when I nearly wet myself laughing at a man who was clinging onto the side bar trying to get out of doing the splits and failing. But karma bites hard in the ass and no sooner had I wiped the tears away, I was that desperate soul clinging on, trying to get my footing. 

As I lay across the side of the rink panting and watching everyone else go by, one of the attendants skated by in what can only be described as an Olympic gold medal fashion asking if I was ok. To which I unintentionally spoke my mind and spat ''I hate you''. Now he smiled and took it to mean I was jealous of his skills, thank god. None the less, when it came to getting off time and I was like a limpet against a rock, the guy thought I was having him on not wanting to move. I managed a laugh at his face when realisation hit him that I indeed was terrified and wasn't about to move without the help of a crow bar to detached me from the side. He half carried me off. Lovely fellow that he was.

All in all a wonderful experience that I will gladly take part in again next year. With a few drinks. And possibly only through being dragged onto it the ice, kicking and screaming.

Nails: Essence  in Choose me! 38.
But for my efforts I was rewarded with a penguin teddy, the little guy above. I'll show you him and my lovely chocolate milkshake/nail varnish (right) instead of  the one picture Stephen captured of me holding onto the side in a frantic pose while looking as if I am either going to burst into tears or kill someone. I was far away from an exit point at that time, let me just add in my defence.  

On a side note this was McDonalds finest large chocolate milkshake that they had to offer. Not sure why being thirsty is fun. Is there some ironic value I'm missing here? I hate being outsmarted by my drinks.

Thats all from me for now. Did anyone else have experiences like this while skating or is it just me?                                                


Friday 11 January 2013

Friday Favourites #2

Its Friday again and I am glad the week is finally over. It was jam packed with loads of stuff, so now is the time to put the feet up and relax a bit me thinks. This week I've been really enjoying this lovely list of bits;

Site: One Click At A Time
This is a site thats well worth checking out. There are many like it, but I found this one to have a variety of things to choose. You simply go and 'click', thats all. By doing so you are donating to a cause, but you are not paying yourself. Have a look and maybe visit if you are bored.

Food: Muller Rice
Need I say more? I got a pack of 6 on offer in Tesco for €3.00 that has 3 plain and 3 strawberry. I have been munching my way through them all week and can safely say I love opening the fridge to have a root and find something yummy!

Blog: Sprinkle Of Glitter
I love to follow all types of blogs and this one is a must-read for me. Louise is a beauty guru who also is part of the YouTube family. I would go check her out here if you love fashion and beauty. She also blogs and makes videos with her little girl, 'Baby Glitter' - and we all know I'm a sucker for anything cute!

Game: Shark Dash
This game is for iPhones and Android phones. As far as I know its only free for Android users and under a euro otherwise. I was introduced to it the other day by a friend and its just so addictive! The aim of the game is to get the shark to eat ducks by jumping through hoops and up in the air past platforms. Its fun and easy to use - at first! I think it attracts me as well by the animations of how cartoon-like the animals are and how funny they look. 

Thing: The Winter Sales
I bagged myself some great bargins in the sales, both in the shops and online. I had a brilliant time in Boots with my Advantage Card points and a gift voucher, picking up a few bits for myself and some presents for my January birthday people! A little poke around Asos and I came away with a beautiful dress that was better then half price. Once the post man comes I will have a show and tell!

Product: Herbal Essences Seductively Straight Hair Mask
I picked this up a few weeks ago as I was looking for an intensive hair treatment and it was on special offer. This gem has been my go-to hair treat that keeps it soft and shiny. You can read all about it over here.

Thats all from me for now, I hope you all have a fab weekend and go try something new! 

Review: Herbal Essences Seductively Straight Hair Mask

Hello all! Hope you are having a fine and lovely day. I have been using this product for the past few weeks and thought that I would do a little review on it as it has impressed me so much!

This is from the oh-so-divine Herbal Essences range. I have to say I am a big lover of all things Herbal Essences and have been using them for years. The new packaging that they have come out with over the past 2/3 years has been fresh and eye catching. Its very up to date and slightly shiny too, and who doesn't love shiny, humm?

This particular gem is from their Seductively Straight line for dry and damaged hair. They have heaps of different ones to suit all hair types. They come with shampoos, conditions, intensive conditioner, finishing touch cream and many many more. I have long blonde hair and for the most part it is straight, so this was perfect for me. I picked this product up on clearance from my seemingly most favourite place in the world, Tesco. It was under €3 but the normal price I have seen in Boots and Super Drug is about €5/€6. 

And does it work? Well indeed it does. I love my baths so once a week is the perfect time to put some into my hair and then let it do its magic. My hair has been in such good condition recently that I have only used a small amount of the thick, creamy mask on the ends of my hair, while giving the rest a quick condition with whatever happens to be floating around the bathroom. 15 to 20 minutes later, depending on how prune-like I want to look, I wash it out and hop out of the bath to find my hair is noticeably softer, less tangled and more easy to manage. And man does it smell good! This pot has lasted me ages and is well worth looking out for to have a sniff for yourself and see what I'm raving about. Once I finish my pot I will definitely be on the look out for another. 

Have you ever tried any of the Herbal Essences products? 

Tuesday 8 January 2013

Review: Veet Hair Removal Cream

I'm sitting here after a rather sore experience. I am not a fan of of shaving my legs as I tend to catch myself with the razor all the time. So when I was in Boots the other day I picked up Veets Hair Removal Cream with aloe vera and vitamin e for sensitive skin for around €6.15. I can have quite sensitive skin so I thought this would be perfect for me, with the added bonus of aloe vera and vitamin e. There are loads of different creams in this range, you can get spray on creams, roll ons, strips and creams in pump form. It boasts to be 'proven to work on very short hair' and 'can take noticeably longer to grow back'.  The product itself is in a 100ml tube that also comes with a specially designed spatula in pink, which I thought was cute. The instructions tell you to apply evenly to your skin with the spatula. You leave it on for 5 minutes and then remove it with the spatula, then rinse the residue away.  

It specifies on their website that is for your legs, which you can see here. However, on the package it says its designed for use on legs, arms, underarms and bikini lines. Whatever about using it on yours legs I would not  recommend using it on more sensitive parts of your body. It has the most awful smell and irritated my skin so much I had to wash it off before the 5 minutes were up. OUCH!! 24 hours earlier I had tested the cream on a small patch of skin as it suggests, just to make sure it didn't react with me. There was no irritation or redness and the area was smooth after. But it seems that applying it all over my legs does not have the desired effect. I was left sore, red and covering myself in germolene. 

I can safely say I will not be repurchasing this product, instead sticking to the odd nick of a razor. Have you ever used any of Veets range before?

Sunday 6 January 2013

Recycling And Reusing Christmas Cards

Hello everyone! Today is the 6th of January, which means for a lot of people in Ireland its finally the day to take down all your decorations and the tree until next year. There are so many people (myself included) who are superstitious and wont take anything down until today for fear of bad luck. Over Christmas there is so much waste. Food, wrapping paper, boxes, batteries. You name it, its fecked into the bin. Who spends more time then their willing to admit fishing things out of the wrong bin to put in the right one? Right, just me then it seems!
 I love cards of all kinds and tend to keep them. But the cards that are from your neighbour or your far away, only-ever-saw-her-once-when-I-was-little aunt might not be as special to you. So cut them up. The pictures are all beautiful.

Heres a really simple idea I found on YouTube for making a 'card wreath' that means saving money, recycling and well, showing off to anyone who asks where you bought it!

Another fancy idea is to make ornaments for your tree or maybe to hang from the ceiling.

  • You can make a big one using 20 circles or a smaller one using 10. Just make sure the one you pick is all the same size.
  • Use the top of a glass or the bottom of a body spray bottle depending on what size you like. 
  • After you cut them out cut out another circle the same size but from cardboard (a cereal box would be handy!) and draw equilateral triangle. Cut this out and draw it onto the insides of your 10 or 20 cards. Then fold along the lines.
  • Now, you can use glue for the next bit, but I always like to use a stapler because there is no fear of pieces coming apart. Join one flap each from two circles, points should be touching the edge of the circle. Doing the same thing, join the flaps of three more to these two. And thats the top done. 
  • Glue or staple the left over circles together in an up and down way, alternating the tringlae points. 
  • Lastly, after all that is glued or stapled together make a small hole in the top and hang thread from it.

Young or old I hope you have fun doing these! 

Friday 4 January 2013

Friday Favourites #1

As the country heaves a sigh of relief that its Friday, I suspect that everyone might be in need a good read over the weekend! So here are some of my favourite things, people, places and anything else I find to throw in!

Product: The Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser 
This product can do no wrong! I fell in love with it as soon as I got it from my lovely other half  for Christmas  Its from the Soap and Glory range and its food for the skin. I can be super lazy when it comes to taking off my make up and this takes all the hassle away! Squeeze out some of this,  massage it into your face and neck for around a minute, then just wash off with warm water. It even takes off water proof mascara like magic. The smell is amazing too with sweet almond and lavender essential oils. To top it all off every tube comes with a free muslin cloth. Wonderful.

Product: Christmas Eve Bubble Bar by LUSH
I could honestly devote an entire book to Lush products. There are 2 shops in Dublin and before they come into view you get this amazing smell that makes you instantly want to go in! They had an after Christmas sale with 50% off a lot of their stock. Did I grab some amazing things? Oh yes! I will do a haul later in the week. The Christmas eve bubble is a limited edition but it keeps coming back every festive season, hence the name! Its a real treat just before bed. You can get about 3 uses from it, breaking it up into pieces to save for the next bath. It gives the out loads of bubbles and  makes the water a strange greeny colour when the blue and yellow are mixed together. The minute you smell it you relax with jasmine and ylang ylang. I can't wait to get more next year!  

Film: Someday This Pain Will Be Useful To You
I watched this during the week and it was really great, it was out in 2011 directed by Roberto Faenza. It follows James Sveck on his last Summer before heading to college. He prefers solitude to socialising and  has some very deep thoughts that we hear through his first person narration. Between his sister dating a man twice her age and her parents who are divorced and getting remarried, his only outlet is the 'life coach' that his parents force him to see. You get to learn about his past and present through these sessions. Its one of those happy ending films that just make you feel good. 

Thing: Yankee Candle in Christmas Cookie
This has to be my all time favourite scent for the past two years. I love sweet smelling candles but its really hard to find one that wont make you feel sick! This is the perfect combination of sweet but not overpowering. I was lucky enough to get 3 for Christmas, Nom! You can pick up all different sized candles, and the great thing is you can get little tester ones to see if its really worth the price - they are kind of expensive! If you shop around you will pick them up cheaper. They last for ages and the glass ones are cute and add a nice touch to any room. These shops are becoming really popular around Dublin, so pop in and have a smell to find your favourite one!

Music: I'll Be There For You Cover by Boyce Avenue
Man I am loving this song so much! Boyce Avenue have done some amazing covers and have some originals too. They are all the way from the USA and they are the most viewed independent band in the world - so their YouTube profile says! Well worth checking theses fellas out.

Clothing: Fluffy Socks
So everyone has been off college and work over Christmas and what better thing to be wearing around the house then fluffy socks?! You can nab a pack of 2 over under a fiver in Pennys (or Primark for those lovely people reading in the UK) Now that is a comfy bargain.

I hope everyone has a good weekend and that you check out some of the things above. Have you tried any of the products? 

Wednesday 2 January 2013

Small Acts Of Kindness

I know that life is great most of the time, but when your having that one awful day it can seem like the entire world is conspiring against you to ruin any happiness you might be hanging onto for dear life. Today was that kind of day for me.

 I left the house without an umbrella and it started to rain. I blindly squinted at passing buses as I had lost my glasses and nearly got run down when I waved frantically at my bus as it was whizzing by. I bumped into the one person on earth I was trying to avoid (we all have that one person) Forgot my shopping list and wondered round Tesco like a headless chicken, leaving with only half of what I was meant to buy along with some pointless things - who has an impulse buy of asparagus?! In fairness it was on sale, but still.. Finally as I gathered up my shopping off of the ground (the bag broke, of COURSE the bag broke) and went towards the bus stop I told myself that nothing else could happen as I was headed for home. Don't you just hate when you jinx yourself?  

I got on the bus and it pulled away, leaving my milk sitting on the side of the road. I cursed and the driver saw what I was looking at, stopped the bus as it was only a little way up the street and let me off to go and grab it. I have never, ever been so happy or enthusiastic over a carton of milk as I was when I got back on that bus. I really couldn't thank the driver enough and I offered him one of the many candy canes I have floating around my enormous handbag.

The Dublin Bus driver of the quarter past 9 bus tonight, thank you so very very much for making my day and letting me retrieve my milk. The neighbours cat will also be thanking you later.

Tuesday 1 January 2013

Some New Years Resolutions

I hope everyone had an exciting and fun new years eve, whatever you got up to! So its now officially 2013 and as with the first day of any new year comes that tiny niggling little voice in the back of your head 'what will you set out to achieve this year?'. 

Theres the typical worry of weight. If its bulking up or slimming down, were all off to throw as much money at gyms as we can possibly afford. After all that Christmas dinner, leftover turkey sambos and the tin of Roses sitting on the couch just asking to be eaten, you feel like your having a food baby. But giving them money doesn't give you a one track ticket to your image of a perfect body, you have to actually go. Thats where it normally gets a bit hazy for me..

Another silent thought roaming everyones minds is that tiny word that causes so much trouble. Love. Its all well and good for some, but for the likes of us Bridget Jones types its a bit of a pain. In 2012 I luckily bagged myself a great guy (it sounds like I got him in Dunnes, 20% off!) and he has yet to run away screaming. It must be the cakes I bake.

And of course the work/study situations. I will do extra time in the office and show I am ready for that promotion/account/position I so desperately want. I am absolutely going to go to all my lectures this term AND hand in essays early, no last minute late night writings for me. 

Now be honest, are you really going to get up at 5 to 6 every morning to curl your hair and do your make up instead of the extra time in bed? Giving up those chocolate biscuits? That yoga mat you bought 2 years ago isn't going to get a look in either - even if you have it casually sitting in the corner of the hall. But if you decide on just one or two things that you could try out or that would really make a difference to your life, why not give it a go?

For example I have no intentions of darkening the doors of a gym. That doesn't in any way say I am healthy, but I know going about it that way will never work. Instead I am going to finish off that chocolate santy I ate the head off of last night and then consider going for a walk at least 4 times a week - ignoring the bus stops along the way. I am going to try and get more involved with my local community centre. Giving back while making new friends and leaning some new skills along the way. Lastly, I am going to to love myself. I know that sounds crazy, but if you don't love yourself how can you love others? No more negative comments or thoughts. No more I say! And this is where 'Let The Introductions Begin' comes in. Blogging daily, or as much as I can this year will help to keep my creative side going, help me to set goals, learn and be part of a new online community.   

So go on, try one thing, just one! Theres no point in setting unachievable goals when you can start small and be proud of what you have done come the end of 2013.