Thursday, 31 January 2013

January Instagram

New Years Day nails | Ice Skating at the Tower of London | Friday night curry | Denim & Spikes | Lazy mornings with my bubba | Hobbit at the IMAX | Wagamamas Katsu curry | Night stroll along the Thames | Winter Sky | LUSH bath time | Celebrating Mums 50th | Snow day | New Vans | My mad little brother | Hawaii Party!

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Tamara x

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

GlossyBox: Detox Box

With 2013 just getting started it's certainly the right time to get your beauty regime in tact for the new year. This months GlossyBox has been filled with all the necessary products you will need to give your skin, hair and body the ultimate detox this January and here is what I received..

ELEMIS FRESH SKIN Skin Glow Exfoliator
I've only ever used two products by Elemis and both times I wasn't overly satisfied however this product seemed to be more promising. I've recently used up my favourite exfoliator and so I was in need of a replacement and this skin glow exfoliating skin wash couldn't have come at a better time. This is a small sample size ideal for keeping in a travel bag or perfect for a small gift. This product has a pleasant, fruity fragrance and is the right consistency for my liking with plenty of Jojoba beads to scrub my skin well. Although this is a good exfoliator it still doesn't compare to my favourite by Clinique so I doubt I would ever invest in the full sized product. 

My collection of body lotions has grown beyond ridiculous so when I found yet another one in this months box I wasn't exactly thrilled. This lotion is scented with Mandarin and Bergamot but on first impressions smells rather like a bathroom cleaning product as it has a very distinctive fresh, citrus fragrance. I found that if too much of the product was applied on the body it didn't absorb into the skin very well and instead made my skin look white and pasty much like when you over do it with the sun cream on holiday. I'd say this product was OK and I won't let it go to waste however overall it's not at all fantastic. 

JASON Lips Bee Healthier
This is an average lip balm, it does the job but it's nothing special although I was quite  pleased to see that it consisted of natural ingredients. My chapped lips are soothed with Beeswax and Aloe Vera along with Vitamin E, and Green Tea. The product has a tasteful scent of Peppermint and Shea Butter. 

MONU Aromatic Mask
I was introduced to Monu through beauty box samples and each time I  have received a product I'm always left impressed so I was keen to try this aromatic facial mask. Once applied the mask begins to warm to insure the vitamins and minerals within are fully absorbed. The consistency is divinely smooth and although this is a clay based mask it doesn't dry so I would avoid using this particular mask whilst in the bath as any splash of water will remove the product instantly. After 10-15 minutes the mask is ready to be removed, I found after rinsing there seemed to be residue left on my skin and it took another rinse to insure my face was thoroughly washed. The product has a soft scent of Lavender and is enriched with Coconut oil leaving my skin feeling softer and nourished. 

PREMAE SKINCARE Balance Rescue Face Tonique 
After years of neglect I have finally stopped turning my nose up at toners, I never really thought they'd work for me but I was so wrong. I was eager to try this toner by Premae Skincare as it promises to rejuvenate the skin with Lemongrass and Sandalwood oils which are both natural antiseptics. I have quite problematic skin, it's generally oily although I do have dry days and this product targets combination skin. I have been using this every night after I have removed all my make up, applying with cotton pads and working around my face. All excess make up, dirt and oil is removed instantly and my skin definitely feels much more cleansed. 

Tamara x

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Empties of the Month

(Left to Right)

ST. MORIZ Medium Instant Leg Tanning Spray
This is the second St. Moriz tanning product I have used and once again I bought it as a bargain in TK Maxx for only £3.99. I'm not the biggest fan of instant tan but it seems to have become an essential in these Winter months when I'm in need of a quick glow to perk up my dull, pale skin. Although this is a product specifically targeted for the legs I have been using this on my arms, chest and neck. It's an easy and quick way to give me a last minute tan before I need to dash out somewhere. With this being an instant tan it doesn't last at all, one use will pretty much last me that one day and so I did find myself using this more than once throughout the week. An ideal product for when you're feeling too lazy to put effort into self tanning but I would only recommend to use it for an average day rather than a night out. 

TREACLE MOON 'the raspberry kiss' Body Scrub
I was given this fruity body scrub as a Christmas gift and it smells so delicious. Treacle Moon is not a brand I'm too aware of so I can't say I know where you can purchase their products. This is a vibrantly pink, juicy scrub for the body, I did enjoy using this because it smelt so scrummy in the shower however I was disappointed with the lack of scrubbing it actually did. When using I found that the product would just pass over my skin and didn't give much of a lather. 

WELEDA Wild Rose Smoothing Night Cream
I received this little night cream sample in a beauty box some time ago now and I thought I'd get some use out of it rather than just adding it to my growing stash of neglected samples. This is a light, gentle face cream that I would apply to my face just before bedtime and it never failed to leave my skin feeling soft and cared for. It has a fresh floral fragrance and has a smooth, delicate consistency. 

URBAN DECAY 24/7 Waterproof Liquid Eye liner
This eye liner was included in my Urban Decay 'Book of Shadows Vol IV', read this post for the review. I've loved using this liner; it's so simple to apply across the lid to give an intense line or cat eye flick and is incredibly durable. I'm no stranger to liquid eye liners and I'm usually quite fussy when it comes to choosing the right one for me but this one has definitely impressed and I'm gutted I've got all the use I can out of it. Despite the fact it is waterproof it isn't a nightmare to remove and I didn't find myself left with panda eyes the morning after. 

COLLECTION 2000 Primed & Ready Soothing Make Up Primer 
Again, this was a sample from a past SheSaidBeauty box, which at first I didn't give much notice until recently. This is an affordable make up primer which honestly does genuinely work and gives a satisfying result, it leaves a matte base for foundation keeping it in place for most of the day and doesn't sit heavy on the skin. I personally found better results when using this product duting Winter compared to back in late Summer when my skin was much oilier. The product itself is colourless therefore can be used upon any skin tone. 

CLINIQUE 7 Day Scrub Cream
An exfoliator is a necessity in anyones skin regime and this one by Clinique is definitely my favourite of all the ones I've tried. It is rather expensive but it's worth investing in and it has lasted me since my birthday back in May! I find this particular exfoliator has the best consistency, giving my skin a good old scrub without irritating the skin or leaving redness. Although this is a 7 day scrub I still choose to keep exfoliating my face to once or twice a week. I wouldn't say Clinique has the best skincare to offer but this product does stand out for me.

Tamara x

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Liz Earle Skincare Starter Gift

Liz Earle Skincare Starter Gift

The Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser seems to be the holy grail for most beauty gurus and many of my friends can't believe I hadn't tried it for myself. I always hesitate when it comes to investing in such costly skincare products and despite all the great reviews I have just never brought myself to purchase it. Since Christmas was approaching I thought I'd add this on to my list so I could try it once and for all and it was a joy to find it under the tree! This is the Skincare Starter Gift which consists of the all famous Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser itself along with a pure muslin cloth and the Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer.

My skin has been misbehaving terribly this Winter so I had high hopes that this set will give my face some TLC for the New Year and of course I was eager to try the Cleanse & Polish first. This product is applied onto dry skin and massaged well around the face and neck then using the muslin cloth soaked with hot water it is removed gently and the face is rinsed with cold water to finish.

I must admit the consistency of the product didn't meet my expectations I had always assumed the product would have a gritty texture to it, much like an exfoliator, to polish the skin. Instead the product is creamy with cocoa butter which comforts the my face so well when applied and it doesn't sit heavy on the skin, it also has a delightful fragrance of Rosemary and Chamomile. After only the first few uses I have definitely noticed an improvement to my skin, it feels so much softer and my skin tone has definitely evened and appears less dull. My issue with spots, however, has not been completely resolved so unfortunately I still have the burden of problematic skin although at a much smaller scale. It is suggested that this product is to be used daily and both morning and night however I choose to use it at night only, after taking my make up off. I often find when I use a particular skin care product too often, my skin will become too familiar with it and therefore will begin to reject the benefits which is why I have chosen not to use this cleanser so regularly. 

The Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer is created to revitalise the skin, leaving it toned and soothed. This is to be used after the Cleanse & Polish however I like to spray it over my face occasionally throughout the day if I'm in need of a quick hydration boost. Developed with cooling Cucumber, organic Aloe Vera and enriched with Vitamin E this is a wonderfully light product that gives you the impression that your giving your skin a real treat and it smells so lovely. This is only a small 30ml size and it probably won't last me through the year but I will definitely consider purchasing it again because it does give genuine results as promised.  

Overall I am extremely satisfied with these two products and I do regret not having tried them a lot sooner! Every use is like a pamper session for the skin and unlike any other skin care I have ever used before it has made a dramatic difference to my regular routine. It's only the first month of 2013 and for me Liz Earle has certainly made a great first impression.

Tamara x

Tuesday, 8 January 2013


Out Of This World Gift Box
This is a little gift box which contains a 'Space Girl' Bath Ballistic and one of my all time favourite soaps 'Rock Star'. This pink, star shaped soap smells as sweet as candy, scented with vanilla and leaves my skin feeling squeaky clean. 'Space Girl' is shaped like a UFO for a real cosmic bath time filling the tub with a purple glittery fizz and scents of Almond, Bergamot and Grapefruit oils. 

Mr Frosty
I received Mr Frosty last Christmas so it was nice to see him again this year, this time he had been filled with two ballistics and a bubble bar. The 'Big Blue' ballistic is a classic from Lush and turns bath time into a soak in the ocean, water is turned a beautiful blue complete with seaweed! The sea salt in this product leaves my skin feeling really smooth and the scent of Lavender is really relaxing. 'Cinders' ballistic is a favourite of mine for Winter, scented with Cinnamon, Orange and Almond oil it's perfect for a hot bath on a cold night. The 'Blue Skies and Fluffy White Clouds' is so lovely and like all Lush bubble bars creates the bubbliest of bubble baths. Beautifully scented with Patchouli, Frakincense and Cinnamon this is another all time favourite of mine. 

Honey Trap Lip Balm
I've never purchased a Lush lip balm simply because they're ridiculously small to buy for over £5! Nevertheless I have enjoyed using this balm called 'Honey Trap' which has been created with white chocolate, honey and a hint of peppermint, giving my lips utterly sweet moisture in an instant. Perfectly sized to keep in your pocket so it's always at hand. 

Sympathy for the Skin Hand and Body Lotion
An ultra soothing, nourishing lotion, 'Sympathy for the Skin' is a wonderfully natural product which leaves skin feeling soft and enriched with goodness. This is a creamy tub of cocoa butter blended with Banana, Lemon oil, Vanilla and Almond Oil as is great for using after bath time to keep the skin snug. 

Angels on Bare Skin Fresh Cleanser
This is a completely natural face cleanser designed to improve skin impurities such as redness and uneven skin tone. This little tub is filled with pure goodness including Lavender, grounded Almonds and floral oils, all with their own specific benefits for the skin. The product has a thick consistency so needs to be mixed with water to create a paste to be applied to the face.   

Christmas Pud: Father Christmas Bath Ballistic 
This ballistic is ultra festive, and what isn't more festive than the face of Father Christmas himself! Bath water is instantly scented with Orange flower and Mandarin oil, and begins to glisten with golden glitter. The ballistic begins to fizz a gorgeous red until a surprise burst of holly green seeps out from the middle. 

Soft Coeur Massage Bar
This product has the same scent as the 'Honey I Washed the Kids' soap which has a delicious smell of honey and sweet toffee. This is a soothing massage bar consisting of both Cocoa and Shea butter along with nourishing Almond oil. I have not yet used this product but will hopefully get some use out of it if I can persuade my other half to give me a well deserved massage!

Tamara x

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Prada Candy

Prada Candy Eau de Parfum 30ml

I know this perfume is somewhat old news but I have wanted it ever since it launched and with prices usually starting from £30 or above I don't regularly treat myself to new fragrances. Thankfully I got this as a Christmas present from my Dad and everything about it is gorgeous from the vibrant pink and gold bottle to the smell of the perfume itself. 'Candy' is a sweet yet sultry scent created by white musk and a delicious essence of Caramel and in no way compares to any other fragrance I have previously owned. A simple spray of this perfume will make you feel playfully seductive or devilishly cute. If floral, fruity or spicy scents are more to your taste you may not take keenly to 'Candy' but never say never to a quick smell of it next time you're at the perfume counter. 

Wearable for both day and night however it honestly isn't at all long lasting and I have found myself having to 're-spritz' throughout the day as the scent seems to fade ridiculously fast which is a huge disappointment, I probably won't be repurchasing this myself once this bottle has emptied. 

Tamara x

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Top 12 of 2012


I thought I'd start with my first post of the year by reflecting on my favourite/most used products of 2012. Throughout the year I came across so many fantastic make up, skin care and hair care products that it was so difficult to break it down to such a small selection but here are my chosen top 12...

(Left to Right)
Sleek Make-up i-Divine au natural palette | Real Techniques make up brushes | No 7 Beautiful Skin Foaming Cleanser for normal/oily skin | Benefit POREfessional | Essie Nail Polish 'Geranium'| Benefit 'They're Real!' mascara | Sanctuary Spa Mela Body Butter | L'Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream | Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Weightless Reviving Dry Oil | Jemma Kidd Perfect Tan Bronzing Trio | Ginvera Green Tea Nude Cover BB Cream | Bourjois Magic Nail Polish Remover

1. Although I only just received the Sleek Make-up i-Divine au natural palette back in December it has so easily become an all time favourite of mine so much so that I have been using it everyday. The palette has 12 beautiful earthy/metallic tones which all seem to compliment my eye colour perfectly, all can be used to create natural or dramatic smoky eye looks.

2. I couldn't resist investing in the brushes by Real Techniques since almost every beauty guru I follow uses them and praises them endlessly, admittedly I only have these three shown but I do plan to expand my collection till it is complete. All brushes have such soft bristles that don't cause any agitation when applying product to the skin, they are also incredibly easy to clean.

3. With my oily skin such a nightmare to tame it was a relief to come across the Beautiful Skin care range for normal/oily skin by No 7 at Boots. This particular product has been a delight to use, it refreshes my skin, removes make up really well and better yet it's affordable at only £9. 

4. Benefit's POREfessional was another favourite of mine in 2012 although I didn't get to use it as often as I'd wish to simply because it's on the costly side and isn't something I can afford to regularly buy. This product minimises the appearance of my pores and leaves a matte finish on my skin creating a great base for my foundation. 

5. I always like to experiment with my nails but there are some times when I just want to wear a simple red and this shade by Essie has found itself on my nails many times through the year. This is a bright red with a somewhat orange undertone and is wearable in any season but I must say it does look it's best when worn with a tan. The product is durable and easy to remove. 

6. I'm not quite sure why I didn't purchase this mascara sooner because it is genuinely a great product! 'They're Real!' by Benefit gives my lashes amazing length and definition without clumps. This mascara doesn't have the big chunky brush that I usually prefer however it's designed to comb through the lashes even the smallest ones in the corners of your eyes. One major con about this product, it is HELL to remove. 

7. Sanctuary Spa have some lovely body butters but this one has to be my favourite of the lot. The Mela range in general is heavenly, with scents of Rose and Pistachio, this body butter is a real indulgent treat for the skin leaving it smooth and cared for. This is a generously sized tub and has lasted me for most of the year!

8. For Christmas 2011, I bought my mum a L'Occitane gift set which included this very hand cream and I often found myself taking a sneaky squeeze of it because it smells so good! I finally got one for myself in October and it has since been a nourishing treat for my hands. 

9. During the Summer of last year I fell n love with the Organix Moroccan Argan Oil hair care range, this is the Weightless Reviving Dry Oil  which I have been using almost everyday without fail. It has such a gorgeous scent and leaves my hair feeling soft and shiny, I use this on damp/towel dry hair before styling.

10. Prior to purchasing this product I hadn't owned anything by Jemma Kidd but I found this treasure in TK Maxx for only £4.99 and it hasn't left my make up bag since. This is a compact bronzer consisting of three warm shades that give my cheeks a much needed glow giving a rosy yet sun kissed appearance. I love how the product is buildable and blends so well onto my face.

11. I've tried a fair share of BB creams and many have been a disappointment, leaving my skin greasy or even resulting in a breakout. I got a sample of this Ginvera BB cream in a beauty box and to my surprise I instantly adored it. This product is suitable for all skin types and skin tones giving a natural healthy look to the skin with good coverage, ideal for days when I don't want to weigh my skin with make up. It also has a lovely scent however it does come at a ridiculous price of £20 and is only purchasable on-line. 

12. This is another product that I only recently received but I just had to include it in my top 12 as it is such a brilliant product idea. Nail varnish is removed in seconds by simply dipping each finger into the sponge filled tub, eliminating the fuss of using cotton wool. 

What were your top products of last year?

Tamara x