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Net-A-Porter : The Beauty Travel Kit

Saturday, 29 April 2017

It was a typical Thursday dashing between board meetings, carrying a projector and balancing a bag, dead coffee cup and my phone in the other when I saw a new post pop up from the @BritishBeautyBlogger updating that the Net-A-Porter Beauty Travel Kit had arrived.

I have missed every other Net-A-Porter beauty box and with this in mind I flicked into the website, added to basket, clicked through the checkout. Boom happy days.

Over the last few days, I have got tired of beauty boxes. I see the same samples dressed up in different guises of box and I just figured if I cancelled my subscriptions I could buy more targeted products. However, there is always a few brands I keep my eye on for their special releases namely, Selfridges, Space NK (typically gift with purchase) and Net-A-Porter.

The Net-A-Porter Beauty Travel Kit

The great thing about this set is the price, often at this level special addition boxes are £100+ easily so this box at £72 (£5 p&p) is actually really good value baring in mind that it contains 14 items (6 full size). The box is targeted for summer and contains a great range of products perfect for your holibobs.

So what does it contain :

Firstly it is wrapped in a gift box with ribbon (so it feels like a real treat) and comes with the Net-A-Porter magazine, a make up bag (great quality) and a little guide on the products.

Full size items :

Oribe : Matte Waves Texture Lotion

I cannot wait to try this on holiday, not only does it aid in creating beachy waves it also protects from UV. I usually use the Charles Worthington leave in UV protection spray so it will be interesting to compare results as this is  higher end product.

Kevyn Aucoin : Celestial Bronzing  Veil in Tropical Days

This is the only product I am a bit wary about due to the shade but as it is mixed with a range of gold, silver and bronze micro pigments it should be more wearable than some of the matte, flat shade bronzers. I love Kevyn Aucoin products so felt it was a risk worth taking.

Aromatherapy Associates : Mattifying Deep Cleanse Face Mask

This product alone is worth £38 and is something I would look purchase generally. It does of course smell amazing thanks to the infusion of Lavender and leaves the skin matte but not tight as some masks do. This was a lovely Friday night treat as I soaked in the bath so much so I might need to make it a ritual!

Lipstick Queen : Hello Sailor Lipstick

I love Lipstick Queen and probably have more of her lipsticks than anyone else ( I even found one in the projector bag at work!) This shade is apparently meant to make your teeth look whiter and give a plum tinted to the lips!

Lano Lanolips : Lemonaid Lip Treatment

A staple product that contains organic lemon oil to gently exfoliates the lips and lanolin to soften and protect. I see these little tubes all over instagram so intrigued to try.

Rahua : Body Amazon Oil

This smells AMAZING. A body oil to nourish the skin (this would be perfect after a day out in the sun) full of omega-3 and Amazonian buriti oil.

Travel Size Products

Eyeko : Waterproof Mascara

Another staple holiday product, this contains vitamin E and collagen which promises to keep lashes 'lush' :)

Michael Van Clarke : Life Saver

As a bleach blonde this product gives me hope of retaining my colour and length post a holiday in the sun. This leave in hair conditioner protects from UV but should also tame the dreaded frizz when in hotter humid climates.

Omorovicza : Queen of Hungary Mist

A face mist to revive weary skin when travelling or out and about site seeing, this is another brand I have been really keen to try and on a quick spritz I love the smell of orange blossom, rose and sage. Definitely going straight in my handbag....

Soleil Toujours : Mineral Sunscreen SPF30

An essential holiday product and with my fair skin SPF 30 is a minimum - fake tan all the way!
Which leads me on to...

James Read : Sleep Mask Tan Face

Ok so James Read is the brand for a tan, I am a little daunted by using a face fake tan and that it might be drying as well as too dark but I shall try in the safety of my own home...maybe over a weekend...

And finally...

Charlotte Tilbury : Supermodel Body

I think I may be setting my expectations a little high with this title but intrigued to see the effect and impact. This product has a subtle shimmer/sheen to give skin a 'summer glow' and lengthens limbs to give that 'supermodel' effect.

So as you can see that is a lot of product for the price and really does cover every beauty angle for your holiday - all neatly contained in a luxe Net-A-Porter travel bag.

As I work my way through this box of gorgeousness I will update on my views but if you are interested do hurry as these boxes never last long - you can find here  Net-A-Porter Beauty Travel Kit


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Joules and me

Monday, 24 April 2017

I am a big lover of all brands, high street to high end I just love how retailers position and promote their style to the consumer. How trends carry out their marketing and the campaigns they run impact on my buying choices hugely - I am not an independent trend setter, more a magpie that sees a gem of a collection that turns my head and results in my love of the brand.

I tend to have a set of go to brands that I love, enjoy wearing and will return to season to season knowing that hey sit well with my style but excite me enough to make purchasing still thrilling.

However there are a set of brands I just don't yet relate to and I am not really sure why. These aren't staple brands like M&S and Next more the more niche brands like Fat Face, Boden and Joules.

Initially I just didn't get the style, a little bit folk, tactile fabrics with comfort fit - often in warm autumnal colours. It has always felt like they were reaching out to a glowing outdoorsy, pottery firing woman who just wasn't me. Then a few weeks ago I saw a competition to win a bonny painted caravan as part of a particular branding campaign and I knew I just wasn't in this case a Joules girl.

And then something strange happened, I started to see the Joules brand everywhere. In concessions in garden centres, displayed across John Lewis and then on one trip I saw this gorgeous print : Nautical but broken up by spring blooms across a plain background.

I saw that it came in a scarf and a Breton top...then I felt the fabric and it was a gorgeous thick high quality cotton. As I was picking out my size another shopper commented on how well they washed. That was it I was buying my first piece of Joules.

I love the print, the fit, the style and it does wash well (31 years old going on...). I have worn the top so much I have now bought the dress.

It just goes to show that sometimes branding is only skin deep and the products in Joules' case certainly speak for themselves. I am not sure if I will ever make a welly purchase but I will certainly be keeping an eye out for their summer prints this season.

The brand was set up in 1989 and is inspired by the British countryside and offers a range of products, from welly boots through to home fragrance and toiletries. The brand range includes adults and childrens wear at mid range prices and is available online, via catalogue and now at concessions in John Lewis and Mothercare.

Items shown : Riviera Dress and Harbour top
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Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit

Friday, 21 April 2017

Palettes, palettes. palettes....

Possibly my favourite purchase to make is a face palette and the endless options they bring. That is typically I get home and realise that half of the shades don't suit me. This happens pretty much ever time.

So when the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit palette came out I was hesitant, I do own the previous palette and had used all bar two shades to the pan but at £69 it seemed a pretty decadent purchase.

I'm not sure what swung my order - whether it was the Space NK discount or the allure of the pretty packaging and the Hourglass fab online demo but before I knew it the palette was in my grasp.

So far on using the shades I can say that for the first time ever I have found a range of shades that work well on pale skin. The only shade that is still a touch dark for me at the moment (as we have just come out of the deep mid winter) is the Surreal Bronze Light but I am sure I will get wear out of this during the summer months and when I am on holiday.

The shades are as follows :

From the Top :

  • Surreal Light  - This is sheer enough to use all over the face and has a golden glow - really pretty and great for day and night use. 
Clockwise from Left : 
  • Surreal Bronze Light  - By far the best bronze shade I have found so far as it is made up of a range of tones and isn't a matte shade which often can leave you looking - well muddy. It has the luminous quality that we have all grown to love from Hourglass that gives a glowing finish.
  • Surreal Glow - is just so pretty and so wearable no matter heavy handed the application.
  • Surreal Effect - a great pop of colour for the checks but I do tend to handle with care - works well with blonde hair. 
  • Surreal Strobe Light - I find this highlighter perfect for night time wear but just a little to much for day to day office make up, certainly highlights features and looks great with a smokey eye. 

Although an expensive purchase up front, the quality and range I feel justify the price. I also like the size and although I have heard other bloggers say that for the price you don't get enough product I feel the range and shades make up for this. It is also a great travel option and option for those new to Hourglass.

Also if you don't have marble effect fatigue the casing has a luxe marble design, which I love.

If you fancy purchasing the palette it is still being stocked at Space NK (if you want to collect your points) or at Liberty.


Peach, Please! Too Faced Lipgloss

Thursday, 20 April 2017

To be fair they had me at the first promotional post which was soon viral across every social media feed. I love the kitsch design of all of the Two Faced products but for some reason haven't actively bought that many to date.

On reading some reviews the scent of peach was quite powerful and sweet so I thought I'd start lightly with a lipgloss purchase.

I have always had a love hate relationship with lipgloss, I love the idea of striking lacquered lips but then real life comes into play and with long hair and normal day to day activities like eating, drinking etc lipgloss tends to end up either wiped off in an instant, smeared unattractively across my mush or with my hair stuck to it. I don't tent to buy many lip glosses.

So, bowled over by the branding and then suckered in by the promise of peach oil, coconut oil and with names like Peach, Please! for £16 I thought it worth the risk.

And I am really glad I did, the shade Peach, Please is a mid peach pink which blends well with my natural lip colour, it has a more creamy oily texture than sticky and the scent is pretty and not over powering. As the gloss wears of I noted it does tend to tint my lips a more vibrant pink shade which is quite cool and wearable if I forget to reapply.

I am impressed to the point I would definitely try more of the range and having seen the cute blush palette I think I know which will be my next purchase.


Hertford Cake Company

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

I hope everyone had a lovely Easter break x

I thought I would take a break from writing about lipstick - which it appears seems to be my favourite type of post (monkey hands over face emoji :)) and bring to you a little cake company I stumbled upon thanks to entering an online competition to win cake - as you do.

The Hertford Cake Company specialises in making celebration and event cakes as well as bespoke orders - think cake in the shape of trainers, party ring themed cakes, Unicorns you name it.

I was fortunate enough to win some gorgeous Easter cupcakes which you can see from the images are beautifully finished and truly tasted as lovely as they looked.

Shannon and her fab cakes can be found on Facebook under Hertford Cake Company, so if you are looking for a special treat do look her up.

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