Thursday, 31 October 2013

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!! - A family tradition

Happy Halloween!!!
I started decorating the outside of the house for Halloween many years ago when my kids were younger and they liked to go 'Trick or Treating'. This has now become a bit of a tradition that has completely escalated, disappointing many youngsters in our area if I failed to decorate as usual!!!

Scary dog!!!
Not only does the front of the house get a make-over but so does my husband who gets a kick out of scaring poor unsuspecting little children with his latest Halloween costume, poor Arthur has to take part too!
After most of the 'trick or treaters' have visited we then like to settle down to a scary movie, usually Hocus Pocus, I know, not the scariest, I am also looking forward to the start of the new series Dracula starting tonight, why are vampires so damn hot! It has become such an annual event that my daughter Lisa, who is now grown up and highly embarrassed by the whole thing, has to let her boyfriend come round and dress up too, a real family affair that may continue for many years to come!
I hope the fact that we put out some decorations will encourage the 'trick or treaters' to come to our home rather than someone, particularly older neighbours, who can become quite scared by the whole event, so please be aware, its only fun if done responsibly!

What will you be doing to celebrate Halloween tonight?

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Nails Inc 'Denim Effect' nail varnish

Nails Inc Denim Effect, £12
Dries to a matte finish with slight metallic hints.
I loved the slight textured look it gave my nails!
It's LUSH!!!
Looks like a metallic when wet but just wait till it dry's!
A really subtle effect that will enhance any casual outfit giving it a touch of something different and fun!
Having recently discovered Nails Inc thanks to their 'Pinkie Pink' Breast Cancer Campaign product (see a previous post), I was keen to see what other varnishes I could get my hands on, believe me, I wasn't to be disappointed!
I am a great fan of varnishes with a twist so when I spotted this denim effect polish I had to give it a try. It was really easy to apply and dried fairly quickly which is always a bonus. I found one good coat was enough to achieve a decent coverage and it is really durable too, may prove difficult to remove!
At £12 a bottle it's not the cheapest but a good product and I would definitely recommend you give it a try.
Do you know of any other varnishes with a bit of a twist?
Nails Inc Limited Edition Snowflake, £12
I have got hold of a couple of these lovely limited edition festive goodies and will be giving one away to one of my followers in a future post so please sign up soon to be in with a chance!

Monday, 28 October 2013

A touch of magic from Monsoon, the Aurora print shirt!

Aurora Print Shirt from Monsoon, £49, Amelia jeans from River Island, £40 and last seasons shoe boots from Oasis
Worn with a simple silver chain and Swarovski crystal ring
If you invest in just one special shirt this season then please consider this little gem from Monsoon. Since I purchased this item it's quickly become a favourite of mine due to it's beautiful floral print and it's versatility.
Above, I recently wore it for a meal with friends, adding a touch of glamour to an otherwise casual outfit. With Christmas just around the corner this shirt would work equally as well for a more glamorous evening, teaming it with black leather look leggings, cigarette pants or a sleek black pencil skirt, the possibilities are endless.
I would recommend that you wear a vest or camisole underneath, although if you are more daring a pretty black bra would work too.
I love the sheer black fabric and the beautiful floral print, almost like a watercolour. Do keep you're accessories simple or the whole look could become too fussy, this shirt needs little embellishment!
It looks great with my Slate Blue Mulberry Alexa handbag
Finally, a statement handbag is always a 'must have' as far as I'm concerned. I love my Alexa with this shirt, it brings out the blue hues, complementing it perfectly.
If you like this shirt I would suggest you get too Monsoon soon, its quickly becoming one of their 'best sellers' this season. You will be disappointed if you miss out on this little treasure, especially with the party season nearly upon us, eek!!!!
What little gems will you be wearing for the festive season? 

Sunday, 27 October 2013

'Think Pink' - Nails Inc 'pinkie pink' Breast Cancer Campaign

'Pinkie Pink' nail varnish from Nails Inc for Breast Cancer Campaign, £11, with £1 donation with each purchase
As promised, I've managed to get hold of a bottle of Nails Inc's limited edition nail polish, designed by both Poppy Delevingne and Mathew Williamson for the Breast Cancer Campaign.
Worn over a couple of coats of Chanel's May, 535
I'm not usually a fan of pink but for such a good cause I was happy to make an exception, unfortunately, I was a little disappointed with the product itself. It was really uneven and difficult to apply so I decided to try it with a pink basecoat to see if that produced better results.
From left to right, two coats of Nails Inc's Pinkie Pink, Pinkie Pink with Chanel's May as a base and Pinkie Pink with Chanel's Pulsion, 547, as a base
The results were a lot better with a pink basecoat although it was still a bit lumpy and uneven.
Please don't let me put you off buying this product as it is for such a worthy cause. It would definitely look good worn while you are fundraising (that includes you blokes out there too!!!), just have some fun with it.
GOOD LUCK and a big THANK YOU to all of you out there with your fundraising!!!

Friday, 25 October 2013

Dior 'Mystic Magnetics', nails with a difference!

Dior Mystic Magnetics, 802 - £20.50 
Comes in this beautiful presentation box making an ideal gift

Set contains magnetic nail varnish, shade 802, and separate magnet
You've probably guessed by now that I have a severe problem with nail polishes, probably due to having taken my A-level in Art and Design a few years ago, they satisfy my need to paint stuff!!!
I've never really been convinced by magnetic nail varnishes before having been told its a little difficult to achieve an even result on each nail. Then I discovered Dior had released their version so decided to give it a try having always been impressed with their varnishes in the past.
I found, as always, that the Dior varnish was very easy to apply thanks to their lovely flat brush, providing a nice even coverage. It took me a couple of practices but eventually I achieved this stunning result.

The magnet creates a wave effect on the nail
Although it took me a couple of goes to get it right the magnet proved really easy to use as you could rest the curved edge on your finger without actually touching the nail itself. My only problem with this product is the time it takes to do all your nails. You have to first apply a coat, leave it to dry before starting on the magnetic bit. This was the part that proved time consuming as you have to do each nail individually. The instructions suggest you apply a second coat and then hold the magnet over the wet nail for up to 2 minutes to achieve the best result. I found I could get away with about 30 seconds but it still takes quite a bit of time, make sure you make a cuppa before you start!
The varnish looked equally as lovely if you just left it plain after a couple of coats and proved to be very durable, its another beautiful metallic to add to my collection.
 Magnet used on left nail while right remains plain
Top nail left plain while bottom has been magnetised
Overall I have been quite impressed with my first experimentation into the world of magnetic nails and would be interested to see if Dior plan to release any further magnetic nail products in the future.
What magnetic nail products can you recommend?

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Support Breast Cancer Awareness month, October 2013!

As women, we should all be aware that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. There are many ways in which you can support this very worthy cause including fundraising events, such as coffee mornings and pink ribbon walks. Some retailers have joined in their support by releasing special limited addition products that include a donation within the cost of the item. Below I have listed some of my favourites and hope that you will join me in supporting Breast Cancer Awareness Month by making a little purchase of something special!
Estee Lauder support this campaign every year and have come up with some lovely products to tempt us again this year. With this Lip Collection purchase you not only get a beautiful lipstick in Rubelite and gloss shade Hot Pink but it also comes in a lovely two tone clutch bag. £5 of the cost will be donated to the awareness campaign.
Evelyn Lauder Dream Solid Perfume Compact, Pleasures scent, £60
Although this is more expensive its worth noting that the full £60 is donated, that definitely makes it worth while!!! Estee Lauder have a couple of other products in this campaign so they are well worth a look at, check out the link above, (pictures from Estee Lauder's website).

Pictures from John Greed website
Pandora Breast Awareness Charms are a great way to support the campaign whilst increasing you're Pandora Charm collection. The three above cost £35, £30 and £45 respectively with 15% of the cost going to the awareness fund.

One of my favourite Breast Cancer Awareness products is this limited edition 'Pinkie Pink' nail polish by Nails Inc, designed by both Poppy Delevingne and Mattew Williamson. At £11 its a little more affordable and £1 is donated from each one sold. I've just ordered mine and will let you know what its like when it arrives.
These are just a few of the products available this year so please take time to have a look and let me know of any other recommendations you might have. I'd love to hear of any other fund raising you may be taking part in too.
Remember, not only do you get to have fun but you can also make a difference!!!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Carins Beauty Flash Balm, how did I not know about this before?


Clarins Beauty Flash Balm, £29

How did I not know about this miracle cream before? I've been a fan of Estee Lauders Resilience Lift skin care products for some time and have had no reason to look elsewhere until my mum recommended Clarins to me. Although I still use Resilience Lift this Beauty Balm provides an instant 'pick me up' when applied after my moisturiser, it really does make a noticeable difference!
Not only does this balm help to relieve signs of stress and fatigue it also provides a lovely soft even base on which to apply your foundation. This is ideal on those mornings when your skin isn't feeling at its best and needs a bit of a boost. The cream is easy to apply, patting on rather than rubbing, and smells really fresh and natural, a little like soap. If you want a more noticeable difference you can also apply the balm as a face mask, leaving on for about 10 to 15 mins, ideal for a night out especially with the party season about to get into full swing.

Clarins Skin-Smoothing Eye Mask (sample from Debenhams)
When I purchased my Clarins Beauty Flash Balm from Debenhams I was given some freebies which included the above eye cream. I used it alongside the balm as a mask before a night out on Saturday and it really refreshed my eye area. Although £30, I will definitely be investing in one of these products too.
Please don't think that these skin care products are exclusively for mature skin, I would definitely recommend the Beauty Flash Balm to my daughter Lisa, especially after a night out when she needs a bit or a skin refresher the next morning. I will most certainly be giving this a permanent place in my make up bag!
What skin care products are a 'must have' in you're beauty essentials?

Monday, 21 October 2013

Topshop 'hearts' Burberry!

Topshop's Heart Print Shirt, £32. Lola Rose Heart necklace and ring

Close up of heart print on Topshop shirt
One of this seasons biggest success stories in the world of fashion is Burberry's Heart Print Blouse. It's been seen worn by the likes of Victoria Beckham (she rarely puts a fashion foot wrong) and Harry Stiles of One Direction fame, I think I also spotted Abby Clancy wearing one on Strictly Come Dancing the other week!
Burberry Heart Print Blouse, £495 (picture from Burberry website)

 However, as much as we all might covert this lovely blouse, few of us can afford the £495 price tag! This is where the high street comes to the rescue in the form of Topshop. They have come up with a couple of similar tops that should satisfy our desire for something a little similar to Burberry's design but at a more reasonable price. 
Topshop Heart Print Shirt, £38 (picture from Topshop website)
I managed to get hold of this raspberry heart print shirt from Topshop (above) but found it was too long for me. Instead, both my daughter Lisa and I were tempted by the short sleeved navy version on a recent shopping trip (we like to call it 'blog research') it was too nice to resist.
I've teamed it up with this lovely fluffy crop jumper, also from Topshop, £34. This jumper comes in some lovely colours including pastels, brights and black but I love the pale pink shade, it's snuggly and soft and is quickly becoming one of my favourites!
Jeans are River Islands 'Amelia' design, £40, which come in several lengths including short which is ideal for me.

Topshop's sheer-sleeved cardigan in deep berry, £36
This shirt should see you all through the winter with the help of a pretty jumper or cardigan, worn with jeans or a flippy skirt its very versatile. I don't think it will get consigned to the back of my wardrobe in the summer months either unlike a longer sleeved version.
Have you spotted any other designer look-a-likes?