Featured Slider

L'oreal Sugar Scrubs

I love L'oreal's skin care range at the moment. I have tried every face wash/face scrub/face mask under the sun and I have never loved any of them like I love L'oreal's products. Last year I started using their Pure Clay Face Scrub and Face Mask and and haven't looked back since - the scrub is perfect for exfoliating dry skin and the mask is great for a mid-week pick-me-up for your skin.

When I saw the sugar scrubs in the shop I was really intrigued and, as always, really indecisive about which to try. In the end I went for the Clear Scrub (above) and the Nourish Scrub. I decided to try the Clear Scrub first and I've enjoyed using it that much that I haven't even dipped into the other one yet! It smells lovely - sweet and fruity - and is quite gel-like in consistency. It also says that you can use it as a lip scrub and as someone that suffers from very  dry lips, I was sold almost instantly. 

Ingredients: three types of sugar: white sugar, blonde sugar and brown sugar to buff, moisturise and strengthen. It also contains lemongrass and peppermint essential oils to tackle blackheads. 

Application: it's best to apply this scrub to clean, dry skin. I usually smooth it over my cheeks, nose and forehead. on initial application. You'll notice it starts to heat up as soon as you start handling it so I tend to leave it for 30 seconds or so whilst the heat cools down. Then I run my fingers under the warm water and massage the scrub into my face. It feels quite coarse when you begin but the water helps the sugars dissolve and once you can't feel the sugar anymore, rinse the residue away with some warm water.

Result: I adore this product. It advises using it three times a week and I don't really want to exceed their recommended usage but I would use this every day if I could. My skin feels really fresh and clean and moisturised afterwards; the result is visible straight away. I can't say I've noticed it make much difference to my blackheads but the way it makes my skin look and feel makes up for it anyway.

You can buy this for 6.65 from Superdrug and it's currently 1/3 off!

I can't wait to try the other scrubs to see if they live up to this one!
Have you tried any of the L'oreal Sugar Scrubs yet?

Books in February

February seems to have passed by in a blur, don't you think? It's been a busy one and with work and deadlines and adventures, I haven't done an awful lot of reading! But the books I have read have been great and are definitely ones I'd recommend. So here they are: 

Romesh Ranganathan | Straight Outta Crawley
I love a good biography by a comedian. Romesh is one of my favourites at the moment and I knew his book would be a good read. It is funny and honest and really interesting. I always wonder how comedians can be so funny on paper but I found myself laughing out loud on a few occasions reading this one! It's perfect if you're looking for something easy and entertaining to read. 

Karen Thompson Walker | The Dreamers
I had seen this book everywhere online before I bought it. There was a huge fuss around it and I couldn't resist indulging in the hype. In a town in California, residents begin to fall prey to a  mysterious sickness that causes them to fall asleep for days, weeks, months. Nobody understands what is happening, nobody can explain it, nobody can cure it. People drop one by one and those still awake try desperately to avoid the inevitable. I loved this book. When I got to the end, I wanted to keep going. I wanted to know how and why. I wanted to know more about the dreams. I wanted to know the fate of some of the characters. It's my must-read of the year so far.

At the moment I'm reading Turtles All the Way Down by John Green. I'm also hoping to get through Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney because I recently read Normal People and absolutely loved it. I've also just bought The Familiars by Stacey Halls which I'm excited to read!

What are you reading at the moment?

L'oreal Infallible Unlimited Mascara: Review

If I could only keep one item from my makeup bag it would have to be mascara. Even with all the makeup in the world I never feel like my look is complete without a splash of a good mascara. My go-to has the Rimmel Wonder'full Mascara but I like to try something new every now and then, just in case it's the next best thing

So I went for the L'oreal Infallible Unlimited Mascara, on the recommendation of a friend. The main feature of this mascara that is different to the rest of those on the high street is the bendable brush. It's said to make it easier to coat all of your lashes as you can coat them from more than one angle. I'll be honest, I never really use the brush whilst bent, I don't think it really makes the process any easier. I do think the shape of the wand helps though - the way it narrows at the end makes it really easy to catch those lashes in the corner of your eye as well as those small, fiddly bottom lashes. 

I love the formula - it's quite wet but I think that adds to the ease of the application. A couple of quick brushes along the lashes and they look effortlessly sleek and long. The colour is also so dark that it makes your lashes pop straight away. I always think there's a bit of a wearing-in process with a mascara; I tend to keep Mark. Lash Styler Tool nearby to comb out any lashes that have clumped together. This problem tends to lesson as I use the mascara more and the formula becomes a bit drier. Then I can use it solo!

I'm not sure yet whether I like this more than the Rimmel Wonder'full Mascara but I am enjoying using it. My lashes look as good at the end of the day as they do after the initial application. It sticks and eliminates the problem of the product flaking off throughout the day. 

Have you tried the L'oreal Infallible Unlimited Mascara? What did you think?

Books in January

The Christmas period is always a great time to get loads of reading done. The days and nights always seem really long and I  always find myself staying up until the early hours of the morning working my way through my latest book. And of course there's the fact that with Christmas comes a ton of new books too! So here are the books I read over Christmas and into January:

Jodi Picoult A Spark of Light
This wasn't my favourite Jodi Picoult book. I was lured in by the idea of the timeline being set backwards but I found that took away from the impact of the book. If the events have been written in chronological order then the 'ending' might have been more shocking. Instead there was no time to get to know the characters and love them before we found out their fate so the blow had much less of an emotional impact than it could have. That being said, it did raise some interesting stories and viewpoints surrounding abortion and I think it's quite an important read in that aspect.

Lily Allen | My Thoughts Exactly
I loved this. I devoured the whole thing in two days and would happily read it again. I've always liked Lily Allen - her songs are fun and I've always found her funny when she's been on panel shows. I think it's her laugh that does it, it's weirdly infectious. Her book is the story of her journey through the music industry, how it impacted her family life and her ongoing battle with the media. She tells some brutally honest stories but they are so interesting and she shows herself to be this really strong, courageous person - an inspiration and a real cry for all women to be those things too. 

Haruki Murakami | The Strange Library
I have tried to read a Murakami book before and never quite made it to the end. The Strange Library is a quick read and has a lot of graphic novel features to it. It's dark and weird and nonsensical and probably completely out of my depths. I didn't love it. It might be one I need to hide away on my book shelf for a few years down the line. 

Nicholas Sparks | Every Breath
The last Nicholas Sparks book I read (Two by Two) was one of my favourites and believe me, I have read them all. This one fell short. The opening of the book promises this spectacular, unbelievable story but not much really happened. As far as Sparks' books go, and if you've read any of his books before then you'll know what I mean by this, it lacked the drama and tragedy that trademark his stories. It left me feeling flat. 

Aside from Lily Allen's book, it has been quite a disappointing month for reading. Not that I regret reading any of these books but hopefully February will bring me something I love. My first pick for this month is Romesh Ranganathan's autobiography. It's great so far!

What have you been reading lately?

Bilou Shower Foam (Review)

The Body Shop has always been my go-to place for shower gel. Their scents are so strong and beautiful and it always lingers in the bathroom for ages after you've used it. Satsuma has always been my favourite and has been the only shower gel I've regularly re-purchased. That hasn't ever stopped my trying others though!

I had seen Bilou shower foams online before (they are all over instagram) and had been intrigued for ages. As soon as I knew they were in superdrug stores I checked every single time I went into town to see if they had any in stock (they never did...). When I wasn't looking for them, as is usually the case, I came across them in a fancy new Superdrug and bought one straight away. They had a few different scents, not a massive choice, but I settled for Tasty Donut. How can anything that claims to smell like a tasty donut be bad? It can't, right? 

It smells incredible; sweet and fruity, like strawberry icing. It's obviously a foam but not like a Foamburst foam - it's really light and creamy and soft. It's hard to describe quite how luxurious it feels when you use it. The best thing about it is that the smell lingers on your skin for ages after you've used it. I can use it in the shower at 5.30am and still smell it on my skin when it gets to lunchtime. So you can smell like a tasty donut all day long

The whole Bilou brand is super cute and completely vegan, so if you're an ethical shopper, they are worth keeping in mind. They cost 3.99 a can from Superdrug and come in a few different fragrances: pink melon, tasty donut, cotton candy and fizzy berry.

I can't wait to try more! Have you tried anything from Bilou?

October Reads

October is my favourite month of the year. It's the time when autumn really starts settling in. The leaves start turning and creating beautiful orange and yellow landscapes before falling and creating that familiar crunch under our feet. The air is crisp and it has that fresh bite that warns us the seasons are changing. It's the time when all my boots come out of hiding and I get to dig out my favourite scarf. 

Oh and it's also the month of my birthday and Halloween so what's not to love about this time of  year?

As it was my birthday mid-way through the month, I asked for a few books to be knocked off my amazon wish list - it was growing at an exponential rate as I am a sucker for seeing a review online or in a magazine at the hairdressers and instantly feeling like I have to read that book!! So here are a few of the books I have acquired this month and am really excited to read!

Kate Atkinson One Good Turn - I have heard so many great things about Kate Atkinson's books. I've bought a couple of her books before on recommendations from friends so I have quite a collection growing but I especially can't wait to dig into this one. The One Good Turn synopsis promises a deep, touching detective story, beginning at Edinburgh Festival when a bunch of people witness a road-rage incident and become involved in the drama. Their stories and lives unfurl through this mystery and I can't wait to find out what happens (the reviews promise a great ending!)

Nora Ephron | Crazy Salad and Scribble Scribble - In an attempt to improve my writing I have been reading lots of Nora Ephron lately, apart from the books that amazon and goodreads reviews have warned me won't be appreciated unless I'm a middle-aged woman with concerns about getting old (not yet, not yet). This particular book is a collection of her essays about women and about the media. I've delved into a few of the essays about women and I just love the tone and wit of her writing. I can't wait to read more of this one.

Joanna Cannon | Three Things About Elsie - When I went back to work in September I spoke to a lovely lady about our mutual love of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. After we gushed about how sweet a book it was, she then asked if I'd read Three Things About Elsie. I hadn't but I went out and bought it even after being told it was a bit of tear-jerker. It's about an elderly lady, Florence, who becomes obsessed with a man who appears in her life again after apparently dying over sixty years ago. Who is he? What does he want? I don't know but I want to find out!

Jodi Picoult | A Spark of Light - I can't help but love a Jodi Picoult book and I was going to wait a while to read this one but I ummed and ahhhed and in the end just decided why not? It's about a gunman who takes people hostage at a women's reproductive health centre and the big questions surrounding the idea of the right to chose. It touches on so many hot topics and relevant issues that have been in the media lately so I'm really hopeful that this will deliver.

Also on my birthday book binge this month I bought Feminists Don't Wear Pink (and other Lies) by Scarlett Curtis, Turtles All the Way Down by John Green, Lock In by John Scalzi and Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan. I don't know how many of these I'll be able to get through during November but I am going to give it a good go! 

What are you reading at the moment? Have you read any of these books?

September Reads

To say that September saw me back at work and beginning my next module of  university work, it has been a good month for reading! It seems to have been the month of books-I-can't-put-down. It has been a long time since I've stayed up until the early hours of the morning reading books because I wanted to read just one more chapter but I've been doing that almost every weekend since the start of the month. Here's what I've been reading:

Notes on a Nervous Planet  Matt Haig
The first of this self-help/self-care duo is called Reasons to Stay Alive; a book I read in one sitting a couple of summers ago. They are both full of little pieces of advice, anecdotes, wisdom and stories that help pick you up when you're not feeling so strong. Notes on a Nervous Planet is particularly relevant if you're mega invested in social media and the online world as it has lots of advice and information about taking the internet with a pinch of salt. Something we all need to do every now and then! 

Normal People | Sally Rooney
I loved loved loved loved loved this book. As soon as I had finished it I wanted to go straight back to the beginning and start all over again. The story follows two main characters - Marianne and Connell - as they move from a small Irish town to a university in Dublin. I loved them both and was invested in both of their stories and I so badly wanted things to work out for both of them. Every day I was desperate to get home to find out where the story was going to take them next. This book deserves every bit of praise it has had and I cannot recommend it highly enough. 

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda | Becky Albertalli
Super cheesy YA fiction is my guilty pleasure. I had seen the trailer for this film and liked the idea of it so picked up the book in WHSmiths. Simon, who is gay but has not yet found the courage to tell anyone about it, begins an anonymous email relationship with a boy from his school. At some point someone finds out about the emails and threatens to spread them around before Simon has even had a chance to tell anyone his secret. Disaster. I loved Simon, I thought he was such a loveable character and bits of the story made me laugh out loud. Plus, I think I smiled through the whole of the last quarter of the book so if you need something to make you smile, this is the one.