Sunday, 20 July 2014

Rave Review - Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Matte Finished Liquid Lipstick In 02 Frambourjoise

Hello lovelies. 

Today I am going to be sharing my thoughts of the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Matte Finished Lip Lacquer In 02 Frambourjoise, and as I've already given away, it's a rave! 

I picked this up in Superdrug this week as it was on offer for £5.99. Now I'll be honest, I have never ever got on with matte lip products, I usually find them drying and uncomfortable, but I'd heard so many good things about these babies I thought I'd give them a whirl for the price. 

Packaging is fairly standard, a small square lipgloss shaped tube, with a small doe foot applicator. My only little niggle about the packaging is that I'd prefer a tighter fit on the opening of tube, as I find slightly too much product comes out, but you can easily swipe it off. 

When you first apply the product it feels a lot like a light textured lip gloss, shiny but very comfortable on the lips. 

However it dries incredibly quickly, roughly a minute or two after gently rubbing your lips together. It dries to a true matte, but without the tightening on the lips I've always found with other matte lip products. However, the most incredible thing about this product is the staying power. It lasts for hours and hours and hours. I can apply this in the morning, eat and drink, and only find it will have minimal fading by lunch time, a little top up and its good to go until evening time, with more eating and drinking in between. I know its a huge claim, but it really does deliver! It's so light on the lips you forget ts there, which is just perfect for me!

Usually they cost £8.99 each but they are currently on offer in Superdrug for £5.99 here. I'm already planning on going back for another 3 or 4! 

Have you ladies tried these? Which colour did you go for? 


Friday, 18 July 2014

Wedding Planning - The Early Ups & Downs

Hello lovelies.

Long time no see! I'm sorry I've been neglecting the ol' blog lately, I've been crazy busy with work recently! Any way, as I said in a previous post I recently got engaged, which means only one thing, wedding planning time!

The Ups 

Its hard to put my finger on what has been the most exciting part so far, but as sappy as it sounds, sitting down with my fiance and going through our thoughts and ideas for the day has to be up there! 

Finally finding a venue that seems good has also been quite exciting. Our first priority has been finding a venue we liked, and that has been a lot, lot, harder than I thought it would be. We went to see one, which although lovely, was very formal and traditional, and even though it wasn't the one helped us put our finger on exactly what we are looking for. However, what we are looking for is few and far between! However we've found somewhere that seems just right, and we are hoping to look at it soon, so watch this space! 

Finding decor ideas has also been a lot of fun so far, and since I haven't even found the venue yet I've barely got started, but I'm already loving it! I've not exactly landed on a theme yet, but a mix of rustic and vintage seems to be what I am loving so far.

The Downs

I thought a good place to start would be by picking up some bridal magazines. Wrong! Page after page suggesting spending your life savings on a variety of different "must have items", filling you full of ludicrous ideas of £1500 being a budget dress, or if your invites don't cost a small fortune it will send out a bad message for your big day. Of course, these magazines are only meant to be inspiration, but they are slightly overwhelming! 

I think my biggest shock has been how much things cost. I've always known that weddings are expensive, but its a big difference between fantasy money and a real amount you may actually part with! As both my fiance & I have huge families, we have large numbers of guests we want at our day, so we are trying to find solutions to keep everything in or under budget, such as having a mid week wedding or a wedding in winter.

So, to any ladies recently engaged, or married, what have been your ups and down of wedding planning? Did you find the cost of wedding slightly overwhelming? Have you had a nightmare finding a venue or have you found it plain sailing? Any tips out there for a bride to be?


Thursday, 19 June 2014

Going To The Zoo Zoo Zoo

Hello lovelies. 

This week I had a friend to stay from Birmingham, and seeing as it was a lovely sunny day, and I had a day off, it seemed rude not to take advantage of it! We headed to Bristol Zoo Gardens, and of course I took my camera with me, so I thought I'd share a couple of my favourite snaps of the day. 

If you ever find yourself in Bristol, I highly recommend the zoo, it's not huge but it certainly has a lot to see!


Friday, 6 June 2014

Yankee Candle How To Guide Part 2 - Jar Candles - How To Burn Them Properly

Hello lovelies. 

As promised, here is the second installment of my Yankee Candle How To Guide. Today I'm going to be going through how to burn jar candles, and how to burn them properly! This sounds simple enough, and I know what your thinking, how hard is it to light a candle?! Well, I often have customers asking me how to stop common candle problems, so if you've ever had a problem with a jar candle, or don't want to, read on. 

Jar Candles

The jar candles come in 3 sizes. Small, which last 25 - 40 hours, medium (not pictured) 65-80 hours and large 110 - 150 hours. I will cover the varying burn times a little bit later in the post. Jar candles need to be burnt for different amount of times, a small needs at least two hours to get an even "pool" (where the melted wax goes edge to edge in the jar) and the medium and large jars need at least 4 hours to achieve a pool. If this isn't done, and you burn your jar for about an hour a night, eventually you might find that this will happen

 (NOT my image, image credit here)

This is called tunneling, where the candles has burnt through the middle rather than achieving a pool, and the whole edge of the wax is wasted. 

Shades & Illuma-lids. 

A question I get asked a lot is "are the shades just decorative or do they have a purpose?" yes, they are decorative but they do have a purpose. Shades prevent flame flickering for drafts, which make the flame burn brighter, which melts the wax faster from the heat being given off, so you get less burning hours from your candles. The shades come in two sizes, small which only fits the smallest jars, and medium / large which fits a medium or a large jar. 

Illuma-lids are essentially the same idea, but flatter and usually made of metal. These, as far as I know, only come in the medium and large size, no small size. 

Wick Trimmers. 

These sit in a basket on the till where I work, and every other person will ask me what on earth they are, and I guess being objective they look pretty weird! So when I tell people what they do and why they need them, most people will give me a strange look, but trust me, if you like the large jar candles, you need these!

Essentially, they are oddly shaped scissors, but these odd shaped scissors really do have a purpose. You want to trim your wick as because if you do, you will get the maximum burn time from your candles. This is because it keeps the flame smaller, which makes the wax melt slower. But also, in cutting the wick you will cut off the carbon bubble off the end of the wick, which stops the black smoke coming up from the candle, and marking the jar with black soot. 

I often get asked "could I not just use scissors?" and essentially you could, but, and there are two buts, one, I'd like to see how you are going to get the scissors down to bottom of the jar, and the biggie, the Yankee wick trimmers have a stopper on the bottom, which is the bit that looks like a golf club, which means you can't cut the wick too short or leave it too long. Just rest the trimmers on the wax, and snip! The amount of wick you actually need is really very small, but go too short, and the wick won't light. They cost around £5, but they really do make a difference! 

So ladies, that is how to burn the jar candles! I promise if you trim your wick, leave it for at least 4 hours and use a shade you will get a perfect, clean burn that lasts 150 hours! 

Ladies, are you a fan of the Yankee Candle jars? If you are, which is your favourite?


Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Another Bargain Perfume Find - Vera Wang Lovestruck 30ml Bottle For £14.99

Hello lovelies. 

I think I'm pretty obvious in the fact I like a bargain. It's not particularly because I'm thrifty, but less money spent on one thing leaves more money to spend on other things! So on my day off I popped in to B&M Bargains, a discount home store, to pick up a couple housey bits, but couldn't resist a quick look at the perfume cabinet... 

I spotted that they had a few bottles of Vera Wang Lovestruck, and as I've eyed up this perfume before I couldn't resist a purchase! I saw it was £14.99 and thought it would be a small size, but it's actually 30mls! 

The bottle is just so freaking adorable! It's a fairly plain bottle but the lid is just beautiful. It has 3 plastic purple tulips with some matching purple netting tied in a bow. It's going to look lovely sat on my dressing table! 

As a scent, it's a classic Vera Wang scent. Sweet but with floral notes that help it feel slightly more sophisticated. It has top notes of mandarin and guava and base notes of woods and musk. I've always found Vera Wang perfumes to have incredible staying power, I sprayed this on my wrist at about 1, and I can still smell it on my skin. 

So lovelies, tell me, are their any beauty bargains around at the moment? If so, what have you been buying?


Sunday, 18 May 2014

I Have Some Exciting News!

Hello lovelies. 

Yesterday was an interesting day. Went to work, sold some candles, came home to a huge surprise...

I walked in the door, mainly thinking about what to have to dinner, to my boyfriend Kyle stood in the front room, surrounded by candles, holding a bunch of flowers. I have to say, for the first 30 seconds I had no idea what was happening, I think I was in a complete daze! He then went on to say all sorts of lovely things which I've already forgotten, but I know they were lovely, before getting down on one knee and asking me to marry him! And if it wasn't already obvious I said yes! 

Kyle has never bought me flowers that he has picked before, and it was a really sweet touch as he'd really thought about the colours and flowers! I'm thinking of pressing the whole bouquet and framing it. 

My ring is, as you can probably tell, not a diamond! I've never been much of a diamond person so it's an emerald with 3 tiny diamonds either side so it has slightly more of an engagement ring look about it. He told me it's from a vintage jewellers in Bristol, and it's in amazing condition from a vintage ring. It's so bloody stunning I can't stop looking at it! However I am going to have to, because tomorrow its going to the jewellers to be resized as it's a couple of sizes to big at the moment, I really hope it comes back quickly!

After the proposal I rang my mum straight away, as I was to exciting to wait! She screamed and screamed which was hilarious, and deafening! We then popped over to her house so I could show off my bling and have a celebratory drink. My step dad is a budding photographer and insisted we had so photos taken, and I thought this one was quite sweet, very simple but very sweet.

Right now I am still far to giddy and giggly, and very very happy.

So that is my exciting news ladies! 


Friday, 9 May 2014

Yankee Candle How To Guide: Wax Tarts & Tart Burners

Hello lovelies. 

As you may or may not know, I work for Yankee Candle, and on an average day I tend to be asked a lot of questions regarding candles, wax tarts, accessories, how to use it, what it does and so on! So I thought I'd put together a couple of little How To Guide

Today I'm talking about wax tarts and tart burners! These I tend to be asked about the most, as they are a really new concept in England, so I thought I'd do this one first! 

What are wax tarts, what do they look like? 

Wax tarts are small, flat, scalloped edged solid yet soft wax in a plastic wrap. They do not have wicks, and are unable to be burnt without a tart burner. They are available in all the same fragrances as the candles, carrying the same label imagery and coloured wax as the larger candles. 

What is a tart burner?

A tart burner looks a lot like an oil burner, a vase shape with a dish on top and a empty section in the bottom, but a tart burner has a deeper dish as tarts need more space to melt. Tart burners come in a varitey of shapes, sizes, designs and are often made of different materials, but glass and ceramic tend to be the most common. 

How do I use a tart in a tart burner?

First, unwrap the tart and put it on top on the burner dish, get an unscented tea light light it, and pop it in the bottom. You can use a scented tea light, put it will be covered by the tart scent, you are using the tea light just on the heat. 

How long will it take to melt?

After about 5 minutes, you will notice the the tart will start to melt around the edges, and you will start to notice the fragrance.

How long will it take to melt fully?

This varies from burner to burner, but it will be somewhere between 15 and 25 minutes. When melted it turns to a see through wax. The fragrance will last around 12 hours per tart, but this varies between each scent. Once you notice the fragrance is gone you will be left with unscented wax in the burner, which you need to remove (gently push it down on one side and see if it will pop up, or if it's stubborn, light a tealight and pop it under for about 30 seconds and gently push it to one side and it should slide out with ease) and replace it with a new tart.

What are the advantages to wax tarts?

Once the burner is bought, bar an accident, it will last forever. Yankee sells basic burners for around £5 which work as well as more expensive ones, but a more simple design. 

Wax tarts are cheaper if you want to try lots of different scents. Wax tarts are around £1.25 each, and they last for 12 hours. So if you find you get bored of scents, you like to try different ones, or your just not sure if you like it, wax tarts are a good way to try scents without spending a lot. 

They are quick to use. They take 15 minutes to start throwing out scent, whereas a candle will take at least an hour to really get going, so they are good if you want something quick!

Strength! Every wax tart I've ever used has had a really good scent "throw" (strength) and I find I can smell one throughout the whole house. This is generally why wax tarts are so popular. 

So that's how to use wax tarts and tart burners! I will be doing a few different posts on candles, candle care, Yankee accessories and tips are tricks I've picked up, so I hope you will come back and read those.

So ladies, who out there has tried Yankee Candle Wax Tarts? What have you thought of them? 


Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Woodland Lilac Butterfly Watch From Olivia Burton - Beautiful Vintage Inspired Watches

Hello lovelies. 

I LOVE watches. In fact, I need to wear a watch every day. Not for any practical reason, because if I don't have one on I feel like I'm missing part of my arm! I've been aware of Olivia Burton watches for ages, but it wasn't until I was browsing in Harvey Nichols a few weeks ago I spotted they had a few of them in store, and one really really caught my eye. The Woodland Lilac Butterfly.

Oh sweet mother it is beautiful! The watch comes in a beautiful branded presentation box, and the watch sits on a velvet cushion. 

The face of the watch features a small butterfly, which according to the website is a picture of a butterfly that was found and persevered in England for over 100 years! The watch also has three hands, hour minute and second, which is always handy if you need to time something. The case is gold plated, and the the underside of the watch features the same bird from the box branding. The strap is a faux leather in a beautiful soft lilac. 

The watch itself is quite dinky, which is nice as I usually wear something with a larger face, but it's good I have something a little more ladylike! As the strap is faux leather its really comfortable and soft, so it sits of the wrist incredibly well. Also, IT'S SO BEAUTIFUL! I can't stop looking at my wrist! 

Olivia Burton watches are quite affordable. The Woodland Butterfly cost £58, which isn't the cheapest you could pay for a watch, but then again it will last for years and unlike other things, I rarely do buy watches so when I do I like to go for a good quality one. The smaller watches cost between £55 and £65 depending on what the strap is made of (the metal straps cost more) and the larger watches cost between £62 and £125 again depending on the strap and the detail on the watch. You can browse the whole range here.

So what do you ladies think? Do you wear a watch and if so, what sort? 


Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Spring Ikea Haul

Hello lovelies. 

There are a few things that I love about Bristol, but one of them has to be my 10 minute proximity to Ikea. I bloody love the place. I know that it's probably the "marmite" of the furniture world, some love it, some hate it, but I love love love it! 

I needed a few bits, and obviously, as it's Ikea, I ended up buying much more than I intended! 

First thing I picked up was this tray, with crabs on it! I picked this up to arrange my large candles. They had this style in lots of different patterns and I think it was around £4. 

I've put the 3 large candles I'm burning at the moment along with a few little bits and pieces I keep on the side. It looks a lot neater and I like the fact it looks like the crabs are holding the candles on their backs! 

This was one of the things I actually "needed". I think in almost every home, is a Ribba Ikea frame. It's just a great basic frame, that comes in a variety of colours and sizes. I picked up one single for a photo I had taken at the Harry Potter studio tour and a multiple picture one as I thought it looked really nice. The single frame was £2.25 and the multiple was £5.

Volia! One photo in a frame! I need to get some photos printed for the multiple slot frame, which I'm hoping to get round to this week. 

Next up I picked up this metal enamel bowl which I just love! It's a bright canary yellow on top with 3 hot pink prongs that hold the bowl up. I thought this was amazing but I could only find one that had a few marks on, so they reduced it to £5 for me, score! 

I decided to use this as a fruit bowl, and it really brightens up what is a bit of a dark corner of my kitchen. 

Next up, Boring stuff! Hooray! Ikea is fantastic for picking up crap you need, but really don't want to spend a lot of money on. The jar was 85p, and I love them for storing food like cereal or rice in. Coat hangers, good solid sturdy plastic hangers and they cost all of 60p for 4, I always pick up a few packs because I always seem to need them! And more exciting that anything else... WASHING UP BRUSHES! They were 20p each so I thought I'd just stock up while I was there and bought 5. A peeler, because I've seemingly lost mine in the move & I hate peeling veggies with a knife! Ikea sell a range of basic kitchen tools for between 60p and £1.50.

Ok, so vaguely boring but also kind of exciting. I'm starting to find my winter duvet just a little too warm, so I thought I'd grab a really thin one while I was passing. This duvet is pretty much as thing as a sheet, and is only for the warmest months of the year, but it's a blessing for hot nights if, like me, you can't sleep without a duvet. 

My boyfriend decided he really wanted these stick on ghost mirrors, and seeing as he had stood with me choosing fruit bowls for a good 15 minutes, I thought he deserved them! He's already put them up! 

WoOoOoOohOOOOO scary ghost mirror! 

Next up, my favourite purchase of the day, fabric! Since we moved in to the new place we've been stuck with stupid horrible bright red curtains that were here when we moved in. However, curtains are stupidly expensive, and usually stupid boring. So I decided to get some fabric and make my own. Ikea has a lot of nice fabrics to choose from, but I chose the above as it was nice and colourful. I also picked up some wonder webb to take up the seams to the right lengths.

As I was using wonder webb it only took about 20 minutes to make both curtains for the kitchen, and I really like how they turned out! Really adds a nice splash of colour to an otherwise quite white room! 

So that was my Ikea haul! How about you ladies, are you an Ikea lover or a hater?