Thursday, 11 February 2016

5 Handmade Valentine Gift Ideas


1. Write out the lyrics of your partner's favourite song or a quote they like and frame it. You could handwrite them or if you don't like your handwriting get on a computer and choose a pretty font, print out and frame. You can also cheat by using free  printables such as the ones below.

My favourite quote about love is this one below: Corinthians 13:4-8. It was designed by Mary Haas and can be printed from Quotestagram.  I also love Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and the middle quote is the beginning of Mr Darcy's Proposal to Elizabeth. You can find it by visiting Lemon Squeezy Home. Finally the last printable by Sprik Space just sweet and funny at the same time and would be perfect for a foodie!






 2.  Get busy with a sharpie pen and design a pair of mugs, one for each of you. Here is a DIY mug tutorial by Living Your Creative.

3. They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach so make breakfast in bed....

4. Or make a lovely cake, I love this white chocolate cheesecake with stunning raspberry heart decoration from Tracey's Culinary Adventures.  Or this strawberry, Oreo Cookies and Cream Cake by Jo The Baker.

5. Create a Story of Us info graphic using a graphic programme like Canva. include where and how you met, where you had your first kiss, anniversary memories, where you got engaged etc. Etsy has some ideas that can show you what I mean. Or more simply a list of your favourite memories you have together. Print out and Frame.  

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

B. Pure Micellar Water & B Pure Sensitive Micellar Cleansing Wipes Review

 B Pure Micellar Water is part of Superdrug's B premium range and is cruelty free and vegan. Micellar water contains micelles, tiny round balls of cleansing molecules that float in the water. They lift dirt, make up and oil from the skin but with no need to rinse away, which is why they're so popular.  The B Pure Micellar Water is marketed as a 'Quick and easy 3 in 1 cleanser / super water 'that cleanses in just one swipe .' It claims to 'cleanse, by removing impurities and makeup, tone by restoring the ph. balance and keep the skin supple and refresh the skin with cucumber juice extract.' You can smell the cucumber but it's a pretty inoffensive smell and quite refreshing.

The directions say to use this morning and night. I had to use at least two fully soaked (ie drowned) cotton pads sometimes three, so I wouldn't say this removes dirt and makeup in one swipe as it claims to. After a few days I found this left a tacky residue on my skin which was contributing to a couple of spots on my face in random places where I never get any, such as by my ear and neck. So I went out and bought a bottle of Simple toner to use afterwards. However while the micellar water appeared to be getting all the makeup off  (the second or third pad would be clean) when I used the toner even more foundation came off. Despite this you'll be pleased to know this does remove waterproof mascara and the smell didn't make my eyes water like Liz Earle's Cleanse and Polish does. Be careful not to get it in your eyes though, because it does sting. Since the bottle was tall and transparent I could see the micellar water disappearing at a fast rate. While I liked that the B Pure Micellar Water didn't have a strong smell, I wasn't impressed with how well it cleaned my face, especially when I was wearing a full face of makeup. I needed to use a lot of product as well. I would give this a 2 out of 5 and I don't think I will be repurchasing this.

Onto the B. Pure Sensitive Micellar Face Wipes which were much better. They are very wet and moist especially compared to Nivea's. I also like that the pack has a plastic lid on top of the seal because it keeps the wipes wet and fresh. Although the packaging looks very similar to their B quick 4 in 1 Cleansing wipes they are not the same and are different prices. These are targeted to those with sensitive skin and they are hypoallergic and dermatology approved. It's also free of fragrance, colour as well as being alcohol free. The packaging has the leaping bunny logo meaning that the product is cruelty free and hasn't been tested on animals.

It takes around one and a half wipes to remove a face full of makeup (liquid foundation, blush, contour, powder) and one or two for the eyes. It is really gentle on the eyes, doesn't sting and removes waterproof mascara. I've also been on the lookout for face wipes that don't contain MI or MCI preservatives that can cause contact dermatis and these B Pure Micellar Cleansing wipes don't have these ingredients. These are wonderful, effective at removing makeup and excellent value for money with 25 wipes for only a pound! What a bargain! Definitely 5/5.


 B. Pure Sensitive Micellar Cleansing wipes for £1 Superdrug online

Ingredients

Aqua, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Polysorbate 20, Butylene Glycol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Tocopheryl Acetate, Hamamelis Virginiana Water, Cucumis Sativus Fruit Extract, Glycerin, PEG- 35 Castor Oil, Sodium Gluconate, Sodium Citrate, Citric Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzoic Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate.

 B. Pure Micellar Water is available at Superdrug £4.99 for 150ml though currently £2.38

Ingredients

Aqua, Peg-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Butylene Glycol, Polysorbate 20, Pentylene Glycol, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Phenoxyethanol, Propylene Glycol, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Juice, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Disodium Edta, Methylpropanediol, Citric Acid, Phosphoric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Sulfite                                                                                                                  

Friday, 5 February 2016

Get The Look: 5 Autumn / Winter 2015-2016 Hair Accessories Trends

At the beginning the Autumn/Winter 2015-2016 season I wrote about the latest makeup trends on the catwalks and today I will do the same for the hair trends on the catwalks as we're still the winter season. For each hair trend I've found similar hair accessories to help you get the look.
 
1. Head Bands and Alice Bands 
Head bands were a familiar sight on the A/W 15-16 catwalks. From black satin ribbon headbands at Chanel to Richard Chai's low key cotton fabric headbands. Glamorous alice bands were seen at Dolce and Gabbana from pearl to baroque, the preppy Blair Waldolf from Gossip Girl  would be proud.
Left Chanel, Centre Celebrity Black ribbon Ebay. Right Black Satin Headband Claires
 
Black satin ribbon headbands made a statement at Chanel and were also a big hit with celebrities, the satin ribbon headband that ties at the ends is available on ebay (£3.38 + £10.15 p&p) and Claire's have a similar black wide satin alice band on sale for £5. The cotton headbands featured on the Richard Chai show currently seem more popular and more widely available,  presumably because they're more casual and can be worn for sports and yoga. The ones below are from H and M (two pack for £2.99) and Abco Tech Amazon ( £6.99.)  
Left Richard Chai, Centre H & M Headbands, Right Albo Tech Amazon
  


 

Another pretty and feminine look from Dolce and Gabbana were pearl headbands.This Love Rocks pearl and gold leaf hairband from ASOS (£25) perfectly encapsulates the look while a cheaper option would be the pearl headband from My Crystal Fashion Amazon. (£3.16.)

Left Dolce & Gabbana, Centre My Crystal Fashion Amazon , Right ASOS.


Over at Versace were black floral crowns/ headbands. The closest match I've found is one by Nasty Gal (£17.42) the other by ASOS called the Fabric Leaf Headband which is currently on sale for £3.50. If these sell out ASOS have a near identical one called Limited edition Laser Leaf headband which is £6.
Left Versace Centre Nasty Gal Right ASOS  




 
2. Floral Clips
 
   Continuing with the vintage style floral hair clips were seen at Dolce and Gabbana. Ali Express Love Lifestyle have a near identical hair clip ($6.64). Another option is to pin a flower broach in place with a Kirby grip, I found this broach (which also has a matching necklace) for £14.99 at KCA Vintage Gems. Also similar brooches often appear on ebay which can be pinned into the hair.

Prada went for a more modern feel, silver chunky flower clips were placed around high ponytails. These two from ASOS are incredibly similar, for those on a budget I'd go for the middle one which is actually a hair comb and is £8. While the one on the right is made from Swarovski crystals and faux pearl that was £85 but is now reduced to £35.
Left Dolce and Gabbana Centre KCA vintage Gems Right Ali Express Love Lifestyle

Left Prada, Centre ASOS, Right ASOS

 
3. Bows
Bows were also popular on the catwalks, at Giles black fabric bows were tied at the end of plaits. I found these two bows which are similar, the middle is by Generic on Amazon (£1.91) and on the right is New Look's brown Suedette hair slide (£2.99.)
 
 Dolce and Gabbana went for gold and diamant√© vintage bow clips on sophisticated updos. This gold tone and rhinestone bow from Eleganti Tessori at Etsy is a similar style (£39.49) while Tegan Accessories have a range of cheaper bow hair slides studded with Swarovski crystals (£19.95) 

Left Giles, Centre from Generic, Amazon, Right New look
 
Left Eleganti Tesori Etsy Centre Dolce and Gabbana, Right Tegan  Accessories
 
4. Headwraps and Headscarves
 
Silk patterned headscarves were seen at Dolce and Gabbana and oversized headwraps with bows were seen at Delpozo, but I have focused on the tulle animal print head wrap seen at Agnes B (See Centre). On left is a chiffon brown animal print head wrap by The Glitz (£3.50) and the right is a head wrap by Johnny Loves Rosie (£5.40.) 
Left The Glitz, Centre Agnes B, Right Johnny Loves Rosie

5. Leather Hair Accessories 


Leather hair accessories are a big trend this autumn/winter. Leather hair ties were seen at Lanvin and ASOS has a limited edition bow tassel for £5 in a similar style. At Carolina Herrera metallic strip of leather Orlando Pita were wrapped around slick ponytails. While not metallic JACIMAC at Etsy has a leather ponytail hair wrap for £20.11. Over at Derek Lam leather barrettes and chopsticks kept hair in place and Barefoot Leather has one for £7.99
Top Row, Derek Lam, Centre Lanvin Right Carolina Herrara
Bottom Row: Left Barefoot Leather, Centre ASOS, Right JACIMAC Etsy
 



 


Thursday, 4 February 2016

12 Autumn Winter 2015-2016 Hair Style Trends

At the beginning of the A/W 2015-2016 Season I wrote about the makeup trends on the catwalks and as we're still technically in Winter 2016 I thought I'd round up 12 of this season's hair style trends.

1. PONYTAILS
These were seen all over the catwalks and there was a definite trend towards low ponytails. Long, low side ponytails were seen at Dior, loose and messy at Michael Kors and at Sacai they were more experimental, tying the crown back separately revealing a two toned look. At Carolina Herrara ponytails were bound at the nape with metallic leather, at Tanya Taylor a thick leather strap tied hair back giving it an edgy urban look while a leather barrette and chopstick kept hair in place at Derek Lam which looked smart and elegant.

Left Sacai , Centre Michael Kors Imaxtree  Right Dior Imaxtree





Left Derek Lam Imaxtree Centre Carolina Herrara Right Tanya Taylor Imaxtree
But there were a few designers that bucked the low pony trend. Most noticeably Prada who had ponytails on the top of models head with a clip half way down towards the ear. The look resembled the 'Croydon facelift' with hair tied severely at the top of the head. At Stella McCartney ponytails were wet and high just like how swimmers wear their hair and other high ponytails were spotted with a messy texture to the hair.

Centre Stella McCartney Right Prada Imaxtree


2. MODERN FRENCH TWIST
The classic French twist was given a modern makeover. At Chanel French twists were paired with thick headbands and a Chanel branded barrette and chopstick. At Fendi thick headbands were also worn but the twists were left undone and messy at the ends producing a half twist. At Diane Von Furstenberg French twists had a simple shape that had been roughly pinned up. Tom Ford continued the causally unkempt look but his French twists were topped with braided extensions. At Hermes
sections of hair were curled and pinned separately adding texture and detail which remained elegant but casual too. However Oscar De La Renta didn't deviate much from the original sleek French twist.
Left Hermes Imaxtree Centre Diane Von Furstenberg Imaxtree Right Chanel Imaxtree


Left  Fendi, Centre Oscar De La Renta Jason Llyod-Evans, Right Tom Ford Frederick M brown/ Getty Images

 

3. BOHO WAVES                

Loose waves were a trend on the catwalks, most with 70's centre partings. Rodarte and Ralph Lauren were casual and undone but over at Versace the hair had more kinks.




Left Ralph Lauren Imaxtree  Centre Versace Imaxtree Right Rodarte Imaxtree

4. SLICK AND WET

At Chanel with the 'boys vs girls' theme, models playing 'boys' had hair gelled within an inch of their lives and Cushnie et Ochs went for a similar look. While Marc Jacobs and Vera Wang went for the full on wet hair look.
 

Left Cushnie et Ochs Centre Marc Jacobs Right Chanel

 
5. THE 60s BOUFFANT 
Backcombing like there's no tomorrow, the bouffant was in vogue, with updos topped off with a statement black headband at Chanel or the half up half down look at Sonia Rykiel with slicked fringes and a teased crown.

Left Sonia Rykiel Centre Chanel Right Sonia Rykiel
 

6. '70's CENTRE PARTING
 Wavy hair with centre partings were a common sight at Cavalli, Tory Birch, Anthony Vaccarello and Calvin Klein. At Hugo Boss the no-makeup fresh face look was accentuated by hair tied back and with a centre parting. Over at Prabal Gurung and Pucci models wore centre partings with gel slicked hair.
 
Left Cavalli Imaxtree Centre Hugo Boss Right Tory Birch Imaxtree
 
 7. DEEP SIDE PARTS
 In contrast to centre partings, deep side parts were also a common sight. They looked great with sleek long straight hair at Rochas and Monique Lhuillier. Giambattista Valli's models wore the side part with a more causal, tousled look.

Left Rochas Centre  Monique Lhuillier Imaxtree Right Giambattista Valli Imaxtree

8.BRAIDS/ PLAITS
From a basic simple English braid at Lavin, the French braid at Giles and braided pigtails at I’m Isola Marras the school girl look was popular. At Herve Leger, braids were inspired by traditional German hair style with braids wrapped around the head.  While at Zero + Maria Cornejo braids had an urban edge to them, braided on the side of the head and close to the scalp and long and unbraided at the back.  At Mara Hoffman braids were long and complex, inspired by the Star Wars films.
 
Left Giles Centre I’m Isola Marras, Right Lavin

Left Herve Leger Centre Mara Hoffman Tigi Right Zero + Maria Cornejo
9 KNOTS
Knots seem to have replaced the humble bun. Forget neat and tidy it's about the causal 'I've just thrown my hair up without using a brush/comb and it still looks good.'  Marc Jacobs had the can't miss it if  you tried topknot at Marc Jacobs, while at Veronique Leroy and Johnathan Sandler it was about folding the hair  and let the ends hang loose. Hair at Vera Wang and Armani consisted of lots of small twists/knots at the back, Vera Wang's knots were a lot more messy and unkempt than at Armani. Diane Von Furstenberg hair was slicked back and the ends wrapped around each other and at Isabel Marrant hair was quartered with two elastic bands.
Left Marc Jacobs. Jason Llyod-Evans Centre Isabel Marant Imaxtree  Right Veronique Leroy Imaxtree
Left Johnathan Sandler, Centre Vera Wang Getty  Right Diane Von Furstenberg, Jason Llyod-Evans

 
10. HALF UP AND HALF DOWN HAIRSTYLES
Technically these hairstyles don't involve pinning up as much as half the hair, for lack of a better term this is what I'm calling them. Matthew Williamson tied back about of quarter head of hair, while Valentino took a small strand of hair from each side of the head so that it looks almost like a string across the head and braided the tiniest plait I've ever seen! At Badgley Mischka the front of the hair was teased up but the drama was at the back with silver and black roses above a heavily wrapped ponytail. The result is very gothic and the roses appear to be emerging from a vase (the wrapped part of the ponytail.)
Left Valentino Imaxtree Centre Badgley Mischka Imaxtree Right Matthew Williamson Imaxtree
11. FAUX BOBS 
When you don't want to commit to a permanent chop but fancy something different, faux bobs are the answer. Faux bobs involve long hair being tucked under to make it look shorter. Julien David had faux bobs with a retro '20's wave while Max Mara had a more modern take with loose waves.
 
Left  Julien David, Centre Julian David, Right Max Mara
 

 12 BABY HAIRS
Having small strands of hair escaping from a ponytail or updo created a causal windswept look.  Tuffs of baby hairs were left hanging loose around the ears at Giles and Stella McCartney. While at Vera Wang and MSGM hairs from the forehead were swept across the side of the face like a messy fringe. At Givenchy baby hairs from the forehead were curled and slicked down. 

Left Giles Centre MSGM Right Givenchy


 
 

 
 

Monday, 1 February 2016

Disappointing Beauty Products #6


Beauty Formula Fingernail Mask
I love the idea of a nail mask especially as my nails get so dry if I've been wearing nail polish for awhile so this is a nice treat. There are 10 mesh pockets covered in nourishing oils that you pop on each fingernail rather like finger puppets or hula hoops. You keep them on for 30-60 minutes. I did a test run with one nail for 30 minutes and it did actually work, my nail felt nourished, soft and smooth. The reason why I put it under disappointing beauty products is because it made my hand itch which may have been a slight allergic reaction as I have sensitive skin. If you don't have sensitive skin I would recommend this because it works and because of the novelty factor. The only thing is that the instructions weren't clear about which side of the pockets should be placed on the nail.

Boots Essentials Tinted Lipsalve £1
This is not the worst lip balm I've used but I wanted to include it as the product is not what it is advertised as. On the packaging Boots Essentials Tinted lip salve "enhances your natural lip colour" the lip balm itself pale pink colour and when applied makes your lips look paler which is unflattering and then settles into the lines on your lips and looks white! Most tinted lip balms are generally darker so that they show up on your lips. It does "protect and moisturises the lips" and is fragrance free and dermalogically tested and very purse friendly but I would give this a miss especially if you are looking for a tinted lip balm.

Ciate Nail Polish in Strawberry Milkshake
Oh I had such high hope for this polish, I mean it's Ciate right? A nail polish brand with a good reputation that everyone covets. But this polish in particular  was so difficult to apply - it was streaky, uneven and took an age to dry. It was very difficult to work with. You can see this post to see the review and swatches in full.

B Pure Micellar Water
I found that this didn't remove my makeup well and it left a tacky residue on my skin which resulted in spots. It does remove waterproof mascara and eyeliner but not as well as my usual no 7 eye makeup remover.

Aussie Mega Instant Dry Shampoo
This did absolutely nothing for my hair. It did not soak up any grease, it did not add volume it did not make my hair look any fresher. The full review is  here



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