Friday, 17 January 2014

Polka Dot Nails Inc Manicure ♥

For Christmas I received a lovely Nails Inc gift set called 'The London Collection'. I decided to test some of the colours out and I created a slightly dodgy nail look, that's meant to be polka dot, but looks more 'Mr Blobby'! I thought it had a certain wonky charm so I thought I'd share it anyway!

The set features the London named Nails Inc polishes, and there's 6 normal polishes, 2 metallic polishes and 2 glittery polishes.

I used the lovely taupe shade Jermyn Street as the base, and the gold metallic Westminster Abbey shade for my dodgy polka dots! This is the first time I've tried to do anything clever on my nails, and it's a bit of a fail I must admit. I just splodged on the gold with the nail polish brush! A friend since advised using a bobby pin to dunk in the polish and create perfect circles - so I'll be trying that next time!

Have you ever tried polka dot nails?


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Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Wedding Wednesday - Wedding Perfumes ♥

I have recently chosen my wedding perfume and I am so in love with it! I have bought the lotion, shower gel and eau de parfum set and I've had to lock it away to stop me from using it! I want to save it for the big day so that I associate that perfume with my wedding forever more, and so it feels extra special and new when I put it on. I've chosen Givency Dahlia Noir, and it has a lovely, soft almost talcum powdery fragrance.

It is described as:

A classic, unique fragrance with the femininity of a powdery rose and the sensual mystery of vanilla.

Powerful through its chypre notes, elegant thanks to its floral facet, sensual through its powdery accents.

I'm really happy with my perfume choice, and I found lots of others that were lovely too, so I thought I'd share them on here for any budding brides out there, or anyone in search of a pretty, romantic new fragrance!

Miss Dior - this perfume is fresh, floral, slightly citrusy with a musky scent, and is described as being created for an 'elegant and spirited young woman in love'. Perfect for a wedding day!

This was a perfume recommended to me when I said I was after a powdery scent. It is Chanel No 19 Poudre. This is a lovely fragrance and is powdering in a very floral, fresh way, and it's Chanel so immediately chic!

This is a more budget perfume option - Anais Anais. I really love this fragrance, but I'm aware it's not for everyone! It's very, very floral and can be construed as a bit 'granny-ish'. A feminine, floral and sensual scent, perfect for a blushing bride!

What's your favourite perfume?


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Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Vintage Velvet Bomb Cosmetics Gift Set ♥

I bought this bath bomb set using my £50 Amazon Giftcard from my Holiday Gems win. I'm a big, big fan of Lush products and bath bombs in particular, and I'd heard rave reviews about Bomb Cosmetics, so I thought I'd give it a go!

 This set cost me £10.50 and came with 5 products inside, which I thought was quite good value as a typical 5 product gift set from Lush would cost about £14-£15. When it arrived I was quite surprised as it came in a large box decorated in luxurious, thick floral paper and a cute velvet ribbo. It looked a lot more expensive than £10.50!

The products were wrapped well in straw/woodshavings, and as soon as I opened the box I was hit by the yummy fragances of the bath bombs!

This was my favourite bath bomb - Vintage Rosehip Bath Blaster. It just looks gorgeous and it was quite large. This bath bomb contained rosehip and pure patchouli and geranium oil, all known for skin conditioning properties. This smelled divine, and I felt silky smooth after my bath.

Velvet Underground Bath Blaster - this was another giant bath bomb, and it looks really cute too. This flower shaped bath bomb is dotted with what looks like colourful hundreds and thousands, and contains cocoa and shea butter and jasmine and lavender oil.

Rose Bath Creamer - This was a smaller bath bomb and exploded in the bath to reveal lots of beautiful little Moroccan rose petals in the water. It had a lovely floral scent.

Rosebud Buttercup - another cute dinky bath bomb in a cupcake case, and finished with a little dried rosebud. This was made with shea butter, cocoa butter and geranium and lavender oil and made my skin feel very moisturised.

Surprisingly, this was my second favourite - Bejewelled Handmade Soap. When I opened the box I was a little disappointed to see a soap and thought it would have been better if everything was a bath bomb. But this is the best smelling soap I! I can't get enough of it and have already looked into buying this separately when it runs out! This soap contains 'gold of pleasure' essential oil, and is quite fruity and floral. It smells amazing and I've used it every day since I opened it!

I would definitely purchase this set as a gift for friends or family. It's really worth it for £10 and looks so much more expensive! And the products inside are all great quality and rival any Lush bath bomb!

Have you ever tried Bomb Cosmetics?


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Sunday, 12 January 2014

DIY Shellac Nails ♥

Last March I was given a shellac UV lamp and Blue Sky Polish as a birthday gift from work colleagues as they know how much I love shellac nails, and I'm ashamed to say I have only recently used it! For reasons unbeknown I kept putting this off and now I wish I had got on with it sooner, as it's so easy and would have saved me a lot of money!

You can buy these UV lamps cheaply off ebay or Amazon. You can either buy the branded CND Shellac polishes, or a cheaper knock-off version called Blue Sky. Blue Sky seems to do all the colours that CND do for a fraction of the price. But if you want the polish to be extra long lasting I'd advise the proper CND stuff.


- Soak nails in warm water for about 5 minutes and dab dry
- Push cuticles back and remove any dead skin
- Use a nail buffer to create a smooth surface
- File nails to desired shape 
- Paint Shellac base coat on and cure under lamp for 10 seconds
- Apply first coat of colour and cure under lamp for 2 mins
- Repeat with second coat
- Apply top coat and cure under lamp for 2 mins
- Sweep alcohol wipe over nails to get rid of stickiness and to create shine (or use alcohol hand gel if you don't have wipes like I did!)

Here's the final result! I did this for Christmas and wanted to make them a bit more festive so added a coat of normal Barry M gold glitter polish on my ring finger! I found the whole process really easy, and I'll definitely be doing my own next time instead of paying £25 for someone else to do it!

One thing that was a bit tricky was that if the polish bleeds on to your cuticle or skin, it does start to peel off more quickly than the polish not touching any skin! I will watch out for that next time I use the machine. I would say that in my experience the CND Shellac from the salon lasts much longer and mine started to chip earlier than normal, but still lasted about 2 weeks! But they survived a lot of plate washing at Christmas!

To remove I soaked cotton wool with acetone nail varnish remover, placed on nails, wrapped in tin foil and waited for 10 mins, and the polish came off really easily.

I would definitely recommend this to any shellac lovers out there. If you've got the dosh then I'd recommend CND, but if not Blue Sky is an affordable option!

Have you ever had Shellac nails?


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Friday, 10 January 2014

Cupcake Cross Stitch Coaster ♥

I received a cute little cross stitch set from a friend in my Christmas card this year. It was a Mouseloft set and came with all the bits and pieces to create a very sweet little cupcake design! This was right up my street as I love anything cake related and I love having a stab at new crafty activities!

It was really easy to do and came with clear instructions, as well as the cross stitch material, threads and needle! The instructions have a key so you know which colour to stitch where.

I found a highlighter pen was really useful to mark off the stitches I had done so I didn't get lost and confused about what I had or hadn't stitched!

There was some black thread to do an outline, but I really liked how it looked at this stage and couldn't bear to stitch ugly black thread all over it! I wasn't sure what to do with it at this stage and went off in search of a mini photo frame to put it in.

I found this pink framed glass coaster in an art shop where I live which was the perfect size! So I simply slid in the cupcake and hey presto a cupcake coaster! I gave this to my Mum as she loves a good coaster and anything pretty and pink!

Have you ever tried cross stitch?


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Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Wedding Wednesday - Another Make Up Practice ♥

I've been practicing different make up looks recently as I'm going to do my own make up on my wedding day (argh!), and I thought I'd show the results of my latest try. My last make up look (which can be seen here) was quite simple and just used one eyeshadow and a feline flick in liquid eyeliner, which is not too far from what I wear every day. I wanted to try something a bit more complex, something that is different from my daily look and a bit more special.

I found this wedding make up tutorial on youtube by pixiwoo, and I thought it looked just beautiful! I didn't have all the same colours but I thought I'd try out the techniques using different products and colour schemes.  The result is a very smoky look and I wouldn't choose these colours on the day, and would probably go for more brown/golds like in the pixiwoo video. But I love the effect and how the eyeshadow is blended together.

Sorry I haven't got a face on shot - I couldn't get a good one in my flat as it's so dark! This wedding tutorial was so easy to follow and I'd definitely recommend it for all abilities. I'm no pro at all and I managed to pull it off. I loved the soft, romantic effect to this make up look, it's perfect for a wedding and creates the most amazing doe eyed look!

I tried to follow the products used in the tutorial as much as possible (not the same products, but similar) and the only thing I am missing is Mac Reflects Pearl to add a bit of shimmer, and individual fake eyelashes.

I'm going to Mac soon to pick out some pretty eyeshadow colours that compliment my wedding colours and my skin tone and I can't wait to recreate the look using them! Especially with the Reflects Pearl and big fluttery lashes!

Here is what I used:

Gosh Velvet Touch Foundation Primer
Revlon Photoready Foundation in Shell
Collection 2000 Illuminating Touch Concealer
Soap & Glory It's About Prime Eyeshadow Primer
Soap & Glory Vanilla Eyeshadow (from Eyes Box)
Soap & Glory Minky Eyeshadow (from Eyes Box)
Soap & Glory Dandy Plum Eyeshadow (from Eyes Box)
Soap & Glory Black Gold Eyeshadow (from Eyes Box)
Maybelline Eye Studio Gel Liner in Brown
Max Factor Fake Lashes Mascara
Sleek Blush in Rose Gold
17 Eyebrow Shaper Pencil in Natural Brown

I also used my new Real Techniques brushes to create this look, in particular the angled brow brush is really useful to create the soft feline angled flick.

What do you think of this look?


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Wednesday, 1 January 2014

New Year's Resolutions! ♥

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a smashing New year's Eve and are excited at the prospect of a brand new year and fresh start! I usually have a wedding post on Wednesdays, but I've decided to break the tradition for this special day - the first day of 2014!

Here are my New Year's Resolutions! I don't normally get frank and personal on my blog (except about beauty products!!) but I thought I would share my goals and resolutions for the coming year.

1.) Live life to the fullest and stay positive - Last year I felt quite down due to some sad events and lots of life stuff stressing me out to the point where I got a bit ill. I want to remember to reflect on all the good things in my life when things seem to overwhelm me and try to put things into perspective.  Life is short and I want to make the most of it and appreciate every little moment.

2.) Exercise like you've never exercised before! -  I must must must hit the gym at least 3 times a week. I have a wedding dress to fit into, plus keeping fit makes me healthier and helps me keep a positive frame of mind! 

3.) Spend more time with my niece & nephews -  They are growing up soooo fast and I want to spend so much more time with them, have lots of fun and make lots of special memories. I love them more than anything in the world. They're so important to me.

4.) Make more time for your friends - I'm rubbish at meeting up with friends and just seem to be so busy all the time. It gets a bit ridiculous where all I want to do is hide in bed at the weekend when I've had a busy week, but I always feel so happy after seeing my friends. They are amazing and I owe it to them to make more of an effort sometimes!

5.) See more of the world - This is harder to achieve when you've got a full time job and a certain amount of days off a year, but when I say see the world I don't just mean far flung exotic places, I also mean closer to home. There's loads of little towns and villages in the UK that I'd love to visit, especially by the seaside.

These are my 5 little resolutions - I shall try my hardest to keep to them!

Are you making any resolutions this year?


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