Tuesday 26 February 2013


When it comes to skincare serums tend to be my best friend. They tend to be light, give the right amount of moisture and generally work well with my overall skin type. I can often be caught slathering on the Éstee Lauder ANR of a night  albeit sparingly due to the huge purse weeping price. . So if the ANR is a tad out of your price range then read on... 

Combining both science and nature the latest offering in The Body Shop skincare range is an interesting one. The Nutriganics Drops of Youth Concentrate* is a light weight serum designed to smooth and repair  the skin. Packed with over 98% natural ingredients, this is plain goodness with no nasties. Designed to retain the skins natural moisture the serum almost acts as a barrier to the skin promoting skin cell renewal. To break it down this basically means that gradually over time the the top layer of skin is replaced leaving behind smoother, healthier skin. Sounds good right? With one of the main ingredients to note being Criste Marine -  a rather juicy plant stem cell designed to delay premature ageing - this sounds right up my street. But putting aside the science of the product, does it really do the business. Heres the spiel...  

First and foremost - my skins on the slightly oilier side of normal. I don't tend to suffer breakouts other than the usual when mother nature is paying a visit, and I get the odd pimple and dry patch in the usual areas. I generally sit nicely into the combination skin sector. I initially started using Drops of Youth Concentrate at night, immediately introducing it as part of my night time regime. One squeeze of the handy pipette applicator was enough to cover my entire face. It smooths out nicely and leaves almost a matte finish to the skin which can be finished with moisturiser before hopping into the sack. After a few days I decided to give it a go during the day, omitting it from my night time regime and using it almost like a primer before makeup. A quick pump in the morning after cleansing, rubbed over the face does the trick. It absorbs quickly so no waving your hands around like a loon waiting for it to soak in and literally mops up any oiliness leaving a matte, smooth base for makeup. If you have skin leaning towards the oilier side like myself then I'd definitely give this a whirl for its mattifying properties alone - although I do have a little niggle that alcohol is at the forefront of the ingredients list meaning it could be slightly drying and abrasive on ladies with skin thats dryer or sensitive. For those ladies that do have skin on the dryer side you might want to add a good moisturiser afterwards. I like to use a small dose of Embryolisse on areas needed or when my skins looking a tad dehydrated but a majority of the time I have been using this alone and have definitely seen an improvement in the overall appearance and texture of my skin!

At £22 for a 30ml bottle its not the cheapest of products but its a good half the price of the Éstee Lauder ANR which will set you back a whopping £41 for the same amount of product. Love them or hate them serums are a big part of my routine and this one is definitely here to stay. 

*PR Sample

Sunday 24 February 2013

My Thoughts on....Blogging

Back on a quiet evening on the 18th September 2011 to be precise I decided to start a beauty blog. Having been an avid YouTube enthusiast for a long time I decided to dip my toes into the world that is beauty blogging and fast forward almost a year and a half later and its probably the best thing I have ever done. Over time I have learnt lessons, some the hard way when it comes to blogging and have come to the conclusion that there are no rules when it comes to blogging. So as the blogosphere grows I thought I’d share my thoughts on a world that has come second nature. 

1. As concluded above there are no rules when it comes to blogging. There are tips that may guide you in a positive direction but ultimately it is ‘your space’ to write as and what you feel within reason. 

2. You are always going to find blogs that you think are better than yours. They may have a layout that you can stare at for hours (recall that familiar blog envy feeling) or amazing photos. Instead of feeling jealous acknowledge that the blogger has probably spent a lot of time and effort, you could even go as far to compliment them on their blog. Use blog envy in a positive way just do not copy but recognize what you like about the layout and try to gather some ideas which you could implement into your own blog in your own unique way. I think I have gone through several layouts and headers and probably change my layout more than required. But it takes time to find something you are happy with. I usually find if I am happy with my layout then I am more motivated to blog. 

3. Don’t stress on followers. When I first started blogging I would stare for hours at the little GFC widget wondering why no one would follow. This was only a week after I started blogging and  now I realise it takes time.  Everyone started at zero followers, some gain followers quickly some take longer. This is not a representation of how good your blog is. If you are still getting comments and page views then don’t stress about the follower number. You can be safe in the knowledge that people ARE reading your blog. The number of followers you have does not define how good a blog is. I have read blogs with thousands of followers yet their content is mediocre and then read a blog with a handful of followers and their content is amazing! 

4. Social media is a godsend when it comes to blogging so ensure you have a Twitter account set up for your blog and that you have an easy to find ‘follow on Twitter’ widget available on your blog. You don’t necessarily need a separate Facebook account but its an added extra. 

5. Use Twitter wisely. There will always be people that want to disclose every aspect of their personal life and cause drama but just don’t get involved. Remember your tweets are available for everyone to see. I always use the rule that I do not tweet anything that I would not be happy with my boss or a future employer seeing. Its good to remember that every time you tweet. Also remember that a majority of your twitter following will be readers of your blog. If you have a shitty attitude then this could potentially lose you readers. 

6. Have an opinion but respect others opinions too! There are always going to be times when you will rave about a product and someone will comment that they hated it. Thats fine. Its what blogging is all about. Do not get on the defensive just because someone didn’t agree with your post. Be grateful that they read the post and had the balls to leave an honest comment. I fully understand that not everyone will agree with my thoughts on a product. I am only a small voice in a big community.

7. PR Samples. Sometimes bloggers are contacted by companies asking them for a review in exchange for a product sample. This seems to cause controversy in the blogging community but I honestly do not see the issue. Yes some of the products I feature are PR samples but I would only feature something I would genuinely use and am nothing but honest in my feelings. You don’t have to slate a product i.e. the product was shit, do not buy. You can write a negative review highlighting why you did not like it and be constructive. Some people seem to think that if you do not write the former then you are only endorsing the product because it was free, thats not the case at all (in my experience anyway). I always make a point of declaring any products to my readers. I think this is only fair. As long as a blogger is honest/relatable and has a good rep in the blogging community then whether or not a product was paid for or sent for free is absolutely irrelevant!

8. Don't stress yourself out about posting every single day. You are not a superwoman (or man). Readers understand that blogging is not a day job for most and there are going to be times when you can't post consistently. You do not have to apologise for it. Unless its months at a time a few days means nothing just pick up where you left off. Its fine. On the same hand do not over post. Often posting 2-3 times a day means that the earlier posts might get lost in the blogosphere and then all your hard work gets missed. Spread them out and leave your readers anticipating more. I read a multitude of blogs and sometimes do not have the time to spend hours on one blog even though it might be a fave. 
9. Inspire yourself by reading more blogs. I always feel inspired to blog after perusing through my reading list. Gain ideas, but again do not copy and always credit sources. I always over credit. If I heard a tip from so and so’s blog then I mention and link their blog. Its good etiquette and means people are more than likely to do the same for you in the future. 

10. Interaction with other blogs and the bloggers is my favorite thing to do and I like to leave a comment on almost every post which I read and have enjoyed. I know the joy of receiving comments therefore its nice to give a little back. 

11. A notebook is a bloggers best friend and I like to keep one handy at all times to jot down inspiration that I have found in magazines, shopping and generally keep a track of post ideas. I am probably the worst at remembering ideas that might spring to mind at work or whilst in the shower so its good to be able to scribble them down when I am feeling less motivated. 

12. The comment section of my blog is a link friendly place and I am more than happy for you to leave your link. But please do not spam me with your giveaway or ask me to follow. Its rude. If someone has gone to the effort of leaving a nice comment I will always check out their blog out of curiosity. 

13. Join in with the #bbloggers chat on a Sunday and Wednesday. Its a great way to meet other bloggers and I have found some cracking blogs through this hashtag! Bear in mind though some of the topics can get heated. If this is the case I tend to take a step back. Remember as stated above we all have an opinion but sometimes when you put a group of opinionated girls in one space there are going to be clashes of opinions, its only natural.

14. You don't need a snazzy all that jazz camera to make your photos beautiful. Makeup Savvy has a great post on tips and tricks for taking photos in winter here! Photo's are probably my biggest stress as I am always looking for perfection (it's the Virgo in me) and sometimes I spend too much time stressing over it. I need to learn to relax on this part :-)

15. Don't be afraid to blog outside of your niche. Its ok to post that recipe you have been loving when you usually blog about beauty. Remember its your online journal. This is something I have to remind myself constantly.

16. Finally remember that blogging is a hobby, it should be fun. There is always going to be a negative minority that will see the negatives in blogging but ultimately it has so far been a fun and positive experience for me and something I hope to continue for a long time to come.

These are just little things that I do to make blogging as enjoyable as possible and to get the best out of it. I am by no means a pro and am a true believer that you learn blogging as you go. The more you blog the better you get, come on some of my earliest posts I can't even look at :-)

Thursday 21 February 2013


If I did a summary of the weeks lip products then you would find a solid collection which remains the same. When it comes to day to day lip products, aside from the colour and longevity I look for wearability. I want something I can slick on and go and isn't going to require a maintenance check every hour or so. So this week got me thinking about the products which I return to time and time again throughout the working week. The Collection Cream Puff's has held a firm position in my everyday makeup routine since their release back in 2011. Not the most moisturising of products, but they give a nice matte wash of colour that usually sees me through until late morning. A product which I just can't get enough is the the Revlon Kissable Balms which have firmly become a solid favourite, Rendezvous and Cherish being my go-to shades. These definitely win in the lasting factor and literally add colour to my lips without feeling like I am wearing any product which is an added bonus when your chatting all day. Crush is definitely high on my list at the moment! Aside from stains and balms I do often get out the odd lippy, with MAC Creme Cup being my most recent choice - a beautiful nude with a hint of pink. I was lucky enough to win a spanking new one from Fashion Observer blog which was a bonus! Finally I have been throwing in the Rimmel Apocalips in Stellar. I stand by my thoughts in my post here, but a reader kindly referred my to Elavator Musik who had a great tip of using it like a stain. So recently I have been applying a blog to top and bottom lip and blotting it in with my finger. It gives a great natual (I haven't made an effort) but I have look without the mess of the full gloss! Phew! So thats the roundup of weekly lip products. I expect a few more to be thrown into the mix but I like to keep a compact collection which I know will always match my makeup and I can just grab in the mornings when I am running late for the office!

So what lip products are you using at the moment?

Wednesday 20 February 2013


Me and handcreams? I own a plethora of different kinds, some I have bought some I got as freebies with mags and every single one gets chucked into the hidden depths of my handbag with me chanting a mantra that I will use them daily and not just as and when I need to. It usually starts off pretty well with me feeling rather smug every time I reach for a dollop, but it usually ends with me begging a colleague for handcream after another marathon cleaning session that has caused my hands to dry up something ridiculous! Top that with the freezing cold weather we have been experiencing in the UK lately and my hands can look a serious mess!  However, that has changed! Sitting on my desk at work I have resorted to the good old favourite - The Body Shops Hemp Hand Protector. I think nearly everyone has heard of this cult classic -  if you haven't then where have you been? Its herbal aromas remind me of my take me back to my younger days when my mum used to use it religiously. Not too greasy but enough to leave your hands feeling moisturised and subtle this is definitely a must have for the winter months - Let's just hope I can keep this up, don't they say you can judge a woman's age by her hands? *reaches for the handcream* :-)

*PR Sample

Sunday 17 February 2013


There always seems to be that one product sitting in my skincare collection that I always return to. I might not use it everyday but its there, ready to be resurrected when my skin needs a little something something. In my case its the Origins drink up intensive overnight mask. Being an avid lover of Origins products this was a good shout in the beauty community and I snapped it up almost immediately. Like all Origins products, its filled to the brim with natural ingredients and as ever does exactly what it says on the tin! 

90% of the time I suffer from an oily T-zone, often highlighted by my rather visible pores but then every so often generally during the winter months I will have a dry spell where small patches of dryness will appear. I try to avoid using a heavy moisturiser during the day as this only emphasises the oilyness but using an overnight fix seems to alleviate that problem. Origins drink up intensive overnight mask is a mask which is applied directly before bed, after cleansing. It has a mildly thick gel like consistency with a ridiculously addictive almost fruity aroma. So at £20 a pop what are you getting for your money? Described as a moisture replacement mask it is jam packed with avocado oil and apricot kernel oil which is designed to replace the moisture lost throughout the day and act as a barrier to prevent premature aging - yes please! I usually apply this directly before I am ready to hit the pillow. It does feel a tad 'wet' to start with as it sits on the skin for a while however by morning your skin has literally drunk the product and my skin definitely feels plumper. A quick rinse off with my latest favourite Emma Hardie Cleansing balm and cue the perfect base for makeup!

Have you tried this overnight mask?

Wednesday 13 February 2013


Image - weheartit.com - edited by moi

I know this post has literally spammed my reading list, but I have absolutely loved reading them all and getting to know you all a little better! So without further delay I thought I'd get in on the action and join in. I actually ummed and ahhed over whether to publish, I don't think I am particularly interesting, plus it took an eternity to come up with 50 facts which is rather sad considering my 28 years existence, I hope you enjoy!
  1. My middle name is Cristina after my grandma 
  2. I was going to be called Hannah but my mum’s cousin pinched the name a week before I was born and I  was named Rebecca - I actually prefer it :-)
  3. I have 1 older brother
  4. I prefer the company of boys despite have an obsession with makeup which they will never understand 
  5. I have been with my boyfriend for 6 years and 5 months 
  6. We met in Malia in 2006 - he was on a boys holiday and I on a girls. We live together. 
  7. Sex and The City is my favourite TV show, I have been to New York and sat on ‘Carries stoop’
  8. I have visited the real Friends set in Los Angeles
  9. I worked as a teenager for Chili's as a waitress and had the best fun
  10. I have an ONC in electrical engineering and now work as an electrical designer 
  11. I went to college with all boys
  12. I often speak before I think which has led to many a tumbleweed moment...
  13. I used to think electric windows were ‘magic’ windows and my dad used to get us to say the magic words     for them to work.
  14. Peanut butter on toast with a cup of tea is my weakness
  15. My handwriting is never the same
  16. I can’t hold a grudge it just leads to bitterness and no one wants to be that bitter old lady
  17. My boyfriends pet name for me is Ruby 
  18. I passed my driving test on the 3rd attempt!
  19. I have never been to a concert. Nope never. 
  20. Super Noodles are my comfort food 
  21. My favourite place in the world is New York, just before Paris
  22. I am quite private when it comes to my feelings and only share with close friends 
  23. I have 1 tattoo which I got done on a whim when I was 18. Safe to say I regret it now. I hate tattoos.
  24. I had my belly button pierced when I was 14. I have never changed the bar for 14 years! 
  25. I am a worrier and sometimes fear that life is passing by way too quickly for my liking
  26. The thought of not having children scares me
  27. I have had corrective jaw surgery to fix an overbite. It was the best thing I did. 
  28. My boyfriend had jaw surgery by the same surgeon a few years before me 
  29. I am not as confident as people might think and often play the joker to hide this
  30. I once had a pet fly which I named casper. He died.
  31. My first car was a VW polo in red which my dad bought me
  32. I miss my grandma and granddad like mad and think about them everyday 
  33. I rarely finish books but love to read
  34. But my favourite book is The Perks of being a Wallflower
  35. I have A levels in art, media studies and english literature 
  36. I didn’t go to university and have succeeded OK without it. I don’t think its a necessity. 
  37. I hate orange chocolate, I’m looking at you Terry’s!
  38. I will never understand people with no ambition, drive or motivation 
  39. I impulse buy alot 
  40. I believe in true love and am lucky enough to have found it
  41. My favourite film is The Notebook 
  42. I like to shut myself in the bathroom and watch YouTube beauty videos in the bath with a glass of wine
  43. I regret losing touch with friends over the years
  44. I often pick my nail polish off
  45. I hate people that put dramatic Facebook status’s in order to gain attention
  46. I want to see the world
  47. Trashy reality TV is my vice! Who remembers Speidi when Heidi was actually normal? :-)
  48. Turning 30 next year scares the crap out of me
  49. I like to think I am a happy person and try not to let things get me down
  50. I am a perfectionist and will often do things several times until I am happy! I am never happy with my blog. 

Tuesday 12 February 2013


So today as promised I have something slightly different for you in the form of a small giveaway featuring goodies from Topshop! You will receive all the products featured below. All you have to do is be a follower of my blog and complete the Rafflecopter form below :-)

The giveaway is open internationally however please note that due to the restrictions of sending nail polishes overseas (flammable and all that) then should the winner be from other than the UK they will receive everything bar the nail polish. 

There are no restrictions as to who can enter. Although if you are a 'comper' then please take the time to have a quick read of my blog, you never know you might enjoy :-)

The giveaway is open for 1 month! Once the winner has been selected I will contact them to obtain their details. If there is no response after 48 hours then a new winner will be selected. 

Enjoy and Good Luck! 

Sunday 10 February 2013

How to Leave Your Blog Link in HTML

The topic of leaving links on blog comments seems to be somewhat of a taboo. Me personally? I always leave a link back to my site. Whether other bloggers like this remains unknown. But on the same hand I like bloggers to leave their link. If they have gone to the trouble to leave a nice comment then I want to check their blog. Simple as. Of course you are always going to get the 'follow me' comments which are quickly ignored and I forget about it. When I leave a link though I always leave it in HTML format. This basically means rather than having to copy the persons link and opening a new window the blogger can simply click on the link and go directly to the site. Excuse me if I am teaching you how to suck eggs here, thats not my intention but I thought I would give a quick tutorial on how I do it in case you want to in the future. I also think it looks a lot tidier in the comment section and a tad more professional so here goes...

First you want to type your comment. For the purpose of the example I have just used 'test comment. Original right :-) then copy the code above and in the areas in red put your details. You can copy the example below and edit it to include your own details. I like to save the completed code in a word document and then copy/paste when I comment. Saves having to type HTML out all the time which can be a pain in the...

<a href="your blog URL here">the name of your blog here</a>

Finally publish your comment. It should look something like this >

I am no pro when it comes to HTML but there are a few tips and tricks which I have learnt over my time blogging which the help of Google so I was thinking of doing a few editing tutorials over the next few weeks.  I hope this helps, feel free to test by leaving links in the comments section below!


Come Sunday afternoon theres nothing better that I like to do than sit down with a cup of tea and scour the internet. In true beauty blogger style this usually finishes with a list the length of my arm and my bank card weeping for mercy in the corner. This Sunday though, rather than compile a wish list of unobtainable products I am lusting after I thought I would do some research and find some budget buys so to speak which could be comparable to the more expensive items that won't quite leave your bank card weeping. Cue Splurge or Save Part 1! 

Splurge Products

Save Products 

Friday 8 February 2013


When I first discovered BB creams it didn't get off to a good start. They emphasised my already greasy skin and their lack of colour ranges meant I was often left resembling an umpa lumpa or looking a ghostly shade of white. Fast forward to now and The Body Shops all in one BB cream has changed my views. Being someone that uses a tinted moisturiser on a daily basis (Laura Mercier is my holy grail) I often opt for a lighter more dewy coverage during the week. Having no prior knowledge of this product beforehand I was surprised to see that this is not like generic BB creams and actually starts off as a white cream which is slightly textured with minuscule beads full of coloured pigments. I was a tad wary to start with but I applied a pea sized amount of product to my makeup brush (RT expert face brush FYI) and started to blend. What amazed me was that although it applies white, as you blend you can see the colour starting to develop and it adapts to your skintone so no dreaded tide marks. Like most BB creams this is only available in 3 shades and whilst I used 01 which is the lightest, the darkest does not look very much darker so to those darker skinned ladies you may want to road test this prior to buying! Coverage wise this is a light coverage, think more even skintone as opposed to full on blemish busting. So if you are prone to blemishes then you might want to give this a miss. But whats the verdict? The results of this left me with healthy, dewy skin and definitely evened my skintone I also noticed that my skin felt incredibly smooth after using this and am happy to report that despite being a sufferer of slighlty oily skin this did not emphasise it one bit. So if your skin is a tad on the oily skin and you are worried about using this, then don't be, just make sure that you skip the misturiser or this can end up slipping around a little! All in all a winner!

*PR Sample

Sunday 3 February 2013


Blogger hype is probably the biggest enabler there is in the blogosphere and I for one as am guilty as the next for lusting after the latest offering from a high street brand or tottering off to Boots only to find the product I am after has been sold out. It only seems to take a little mention on the grapevine in the blogosphere for bloggers to follow suit and the next thing you know you have a severely hyped up product that every beauty blogger in town is desperate to get their hands on. So I have accumulated all the products that I have purchased as  a result of blogger hype and heres the low down. 

1. Revlon Lip Butters. I waited in anticipation for the release of these and despite several failed attempts I managed to get my hands on some. OK admittedly I was still caught up in the hype surrounding them and initially loved them but in comparison to products discovered afterwards these were rather mediocre and perhaps had I tried them today I would have been slightly more critical in my thoughts. A nice product but I prefer the L'Oreal caresse range in comparison. 
2. Origins Super Spot Remover. Gold dust in a bottle in my opinion. Does exactly what it says on the tin, if a little pricey. Watch this space though as I have since discovered a high street spot treatment c/o the boyf which could be a replacement for a fraction of the price. 
3. Rimmel Apocalips. The latest offering on the beauty scene. You can read my honest thoughts on these in my most recent post here
4. Caudalie beauty elixir. I am not sure whether this does anything proactive but I am on my 3rd bottle none the less. Its been hidden in a drawer for the last few months waiting for the summer to come around. I tend to use this as a freshen up and it works a treat. I always get the smaller version as its handy to just throw in the bag and go. 
5. Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish. I don't think there is many a beauty blogger around that has not at least tried this. A great all round cleanser that just melts off your makeup. 
6. Emma Hardie Beauty Balm. This is my most recent purchase currently making a statement in my skincare regime. So far I am loving this and I shall keep my lips sealed and reveal all in an upcoming skincare post. 
7. Revlon Kissable Balm Stains. I bloomin' love these and reach for rendezvous on a daily basis. Probably my most reached for product and worth the hype! 
8. Philip Kingsley Elasticizer. I actually received this in a former Glossy Box. Yes it made my hair feel a lot softer and manageable. I found it worked better as an overnight mask applied to dry hair and washed out in the morning but I am of the opinion there are more affordable options on the high street!

Let me know what products you have purchased as a result of blogger hype and I would love to know your thoughts! 

Friday 1 February 2013


For the last few weeks the blogosphere has been in somewhat of a frenzy over the latest offering from Rimmel, their Apocalips Lip Laquers. So it wasn't long before I dragged myself into town to see what all the fuss was about. The latest edition to the Rimmel family is available in 8 captivating shades ranging from statement brights to subtle nudes. So whether you enjoy the more natural look or are a bold lip girl then there is something for everyone. I opted for Nude Eclipse and Stellar which is on the spectrum from your classic nude, think MAC Hue, Creme Cup etc to the boldest of Reds with a slight pink undertone. 

When I first heard about these I had images of them being a more affordable version of the YSL glossy stains but after trialling these I can conclude thats not the case, and the term I have concluded with, is 'interesting'. Described by Rimmel as a  'lip laquer' these are more of a liquified lipstick. Very thick, very creamy, and extremely pigmented with the classic Rimmel 'watermelon' aroma. They definitely have a unique formulation giving the lightness of a gloss without the stickiness but with the pigmentation of a lipstick. 

Now down to the nitty gritty. If you are planning on snogging, eating, drinking or using your mouth in general then step away now ladies. Whilst Nude Eclipse was not as messy as the latter Stellar it did apply quite streaky and clung to dry patches. You definitely need a good base to start with, in particular with the lighter shades but having said that they do allow your lips to breath as opposed to the Collection Cream Puffs which although I am a big fan of can mean that you can't rub your lips together. After trial and error it was time to take on the Vivianna approach and blot, blot and blot again.  Basically the idea is to build the colour. So apply, blot, apply, GO! If you just swoop this on in one hit you could end up with a rather gloopy finish so bide your time. For testing purposes I opted for Stellar on a recent night out. There was going to be wine and food and a few hours to play with. After immaculately applying it using the doe foot applicator I was ready to go. Jeez did this transfer! I have heard claims of this lasting 2-3 hours but after half a glass of wine and a few bites of a chicken salad it was nearly all gone. Aside from this though Stella did stain the lips meaning that I just carried on with my night without re-applying. 

So whats the verdict? If you have dry lips then you might want to give them a miss, however if you are looking for a bold statement lip then stick to the brighter shades, take your time and these could work in your favour but bear in mind the colour does bleed which could be sorted with the aid of a lipliner! I am not quite sure I would choose these for everyday wear as you can feel that they are there and they are never going to last the best part of a working day but for nights out these could make quite an impact and for only £5.99 a pop they are worth a try.