Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Betrousse Pretty Beauty

My Betrousse Pretty Beauty Box* arrived at the weekend, part of the Betrousse concept is that you need to try full size not small samples to be able to decide if you like the product.  WOW I don't think they could have physically fit another thing in the box! 
Betrousse boxes are always well packed, the main black box is filled with protective packaging and the black box is then shipped in an outer brown box and sent tracked delivery to make sure that it arrives safely.
The box contains a menu card telling you the brand, product and retail price of each item.
The reverse side of the card tells you a bit more about each product.
Saffron London Black Cracking Polish 75p
I have not heard of this polish brand before, to be honest I am not a great fan of crackle polishes but I'll give it a go and see how it compares to my Barry M crackle.
Papier Poudre Gift Pack of 3 Booklets, each containing 65 sheets £7.95
The booklets come in an outer folder and I love the design! White and Rose will suit my skintone but Rachel will be too dark.  I know a certain blogger who likes these papers though so I will pop it in the post for her to use.
Kesari Radieuse Anti-Age 30ml £47
This is an organic anti wrinkle cream containing extract of saffron flower petals, it claims to reduce surface lines and wrinkles in only 28 days.  It says on the card that if you are less than 30 that it would make an ideal gift for a friend or family member, as I am erm only just over 30 I will be keeping this to see how it fairs against my fine lines!
Cupcake Organic Frankincense & Orange Day Cream 30ml £16
This can either be the cream that I received or a Blue Tansy & Lavender Balancing Day Cream.  I love the name of this company! It is a fragrant flower cream with lemon grass, ginger and vanilla bean to protect and repair dry and mature skin.  As we move into winter my combination skin always has dry patches around my forehead so hopefully this cream will rehydrate them - the joys of working in an air-conditioned office!
Essyta Cosmetics Body Moisturising Lotion for dry skin 250ml £13.50
You will either receive the cream for dry skin or for all skin types.  I am glad I got the dry skin version as my skin does become much drier in the winter. This is a natural organic product and contains shea butter, coconut oil, green tea and sweet almond.
Yves Rocher Organic Refreshing Gel Cleanser 200ml £11
This is a natural product containing organic ingredients, it is a micellar gel cleanser with aloe vera to moisturise.  It is suitable for sensitive eyes.  I am looking forward to trying this product, I have been using a few different micellar cleansing waters but this has a very different consistency and I like that it contains a moisturing ingredient.
Yves Rocher Sexy Pulp Volume Gloss Pink £13.90
I love pink lip products so I can't wait to try this!
It contains sandthorn extract, with its moisturizing and plumping properties, increases the production of collagen in lips by 41% and hyaluronic acid by 67%
Vera Valenti Valetta Eyeshadow Pink £2
This also comes in grey.  Sorry Betrousse but I had a little giggle when I saw this in the box as it is the palette which caused mayhem when another beauty box included it! What I like about Betrousse though is you can see what you are getting before it arrives and from a box crammed with full size products this is the only item that I don't really like, plus when you are paying £19 for a box worth £122 you can't complain that you don't like the £2 item!
Arganti 100% Pure Argan Oil 60ml £10
You can use this on your hair and skin.  I like to use argan oil on my hair so I really like this product too.

I think this is an absolutely fantastic box this month Betrousse! It contains a great range of products and I am looking forward to trying everything (apart from the eyeshadow palette!).

Pretty Beauty costs £19 plus P&P  from Betrousse website and contains items worth a whopping £122. You can also read about the product and brand in more detail on the Betrousse website.

They also have other kits in stock, including
Summer Break £19 Review here

Have you tried a Betrousse box yet?

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Lauren Conrad Beauty Book

Lauren Conrad is probably best known for starring in the MTV hit series The Hills, but she is also a No1 New York Times best selling author.  She is the author of the hit teen series 'LA Candy', fashion book 'Style’ and has this month released a new book called ‘Beauty’*.  
This is her first guide dedicated exclusively to beauty - it is quite a large hardback book consisting of 276 glossy pages filled with information, tips and tricks to look your best.
The book deals with beauty inside and out, featuring chapters on nutrition and exercise to nail art and hair styling.
The book has nice detailed tutorials with pictures for you to follow.
I particularly like the section on party hair as I am growing my hair and recently bought some clip in extensions for when I go out in the evening so I have picked up some great tips from here!
I also really like the chapters on nutrition and exercise, she explains how it is essential to take care of your body on the inside to look your best on the outside.

I would say that this book is probably aimed at the teenage/young adult market as it covers a lot of basics about make-up and how to look after your skin.  I did pick up quite a few tips from reading it though, her tutorials are easy to follow and clear to read.

I think this would make a brilliant Christmas present as it would be one of those books you keep flicking through and picking up tips!

Beauty retails for £8.24 on Amazon.

You can read more about Lauren on her website

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Layla D Discount Code

Hi everyone! Hope you have all had a good weekend.

In August I wrote a review on the Honey Moisturiser by Layla D, you can read it here.  I have been using this moisturiser for a few months now and I still absolutely love it so I was excited when Layla told me that she was sending me an email this week with exciting news!

She has a new website layladbeauty.co.uk and has launched a brand new make up range which you can find here, this is what she told me about it.

I have been working with an AMAZING team and we have developed a beautiful range of make-up which work with the skin as you wear it. Containing pure, natural ingredients which are from plants and vegetables, our make-up is non comedogenic meaning it doesn't block the pores and is completely oil free!

She has also added a small range of jewellery, which you can find here - I went hunting for lovely jewellery which are unique so it's beauty and a little bit of fashion on our website! The jewellery we stock is extremely limited and once it's gone it's gone!

Layla has given me a discount code to share with my lovely followers ldb10 which gets you 10% off your order over £15.  The code is valid until 26th October so be quick!

If you have any questions you can contact her on info@layladbeauty.co.uk 

I really want to try some more products from the honey range and I spotted this handy travel set which retails for £11.99.  I think the travel sets would make a lovely gift for Christmas too.

Don't forget you still have time to enter my MAC Marilyn giveaway!

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Joliebox October 2012

My Joliebox arrived last night, the theme of this months box is Pure and Natural.

Back to the black box this month.
The bag inside the box was really full this month and it is nice to receive two full size products. However......
Balance Me Balancing Face Moisturiser
10ml sample size, 50ml retails for £24 on their website making the sample worth £4.80.
I was so disappointed to see a Balance Me product in the box, I have had so many products from this brand...
Facewash as a freebie in Glamour Magazine - here
Eye Cream in Lux Box - here
Hand Cream in She Said Beauty - here
I have also had the body wash, lip salve and lip balm!
LOV Organic Herbal Tea Bags
The box contains 6 teabags containing a mix of white and green tea.
100g of this loose tea costs £10.70 on their website
20 teabags retail for £8.75 making the 6 bags worth £2.63
Personally I don't like receiving teabags in my beauty boxes! It would have been nice as a little extra but I don't think it fits under the definition of a beauty sample?!
You can use the code JOLIELOV for free UK shipping and a free miniature pack of teabags.
JASON Bee Healthier Lip Balm Stick
The first full size product in the box, this retails for £2.49 here.
This smells nice as it contains peppermint leaf oil and it feels quite moisturing but I have so many lip balms to use up that this will probably get chucked in a drawer somewhere waiting to be used up.
MOA The Green Balm
Sample size but doesn't say how much the tub contains.
Again a product that I have had twice before in beauty boxes! I received it in one of my Lux boxes and in a Latest in Beauty box.
I haven't used both of the other samples yet!
Ritessens Cleanser
The second full size product, I can't find any websites that sell this in the UK or find the price anywhere on the internet!
This is the best product in the box, although I am being careful not to try too many new products on my face at the moment as a lot of products are breaking me out.  As the tube is sealed I will stash this until my skin is behaving!

Overall I am not impressed at all with this box, Joliebox have been my favourite subscription box for months now and the only box I have on subscription now.  This is the first box that I have been disappointed with, I want to discover new products that is why I subscribe! I do not want to receive products that have been in other beauty boxes or given away as freebies with magazines.

Joliebox have always been the box that don't have the same brands that have been featured in other boxes so maybe that is why I am so disappointed in this box.  I hope next months is much better or that might well be the end of subscription boxes for me......

Did you get this box? What did you think?

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Meet Henry!

Today's post is a little bit different from what you would normally find on my blog but I love reading posts from other bloggers about their pets, homes etc so I thought I would introduce you all to Henry. 

Henry was born in June 2007 and came to live with us in June 2009.  We had sadly had to have our border collie Laddie put to sleep a couple of months before, we missed having a dog around and the house felt so empty so we started looking for a dog to re-home.  We got Laddie from a rescue home and he lived with us for 9 years, Jon and I both had dogs when we lived with our parents.  However, having a dalmatian is a completely different experience!
This was taken the week we bought Henry home.
Henrys full name is Dotty Maxamillion.
We call him Henny Henny Roo which he answers to!
Henrys owner could no longer cope with him as she lives on National Trust land and he kept chasing the sheep! She decided to send him on a sheep dog training course (??!) but he came back from the training and was just the same.  After receiving a letter from the National Trust complaining that they were not happy with his behaviour she decided to find him a new loving home and so Henry came to live with us.
Now he may look cute but he is full of mischief!
He can open doors in the house by jumping up and pushing down on the handle, he then uses his paw to open the door.
When he really wants to he can open the fridge - much to our families amusement at the last family BBQ where he ran round with a packet of sausages in his mouth that he had stolen!
He loves Jon and always has to be sat by him or touching him! He thinks he is a small dog and tries to sit on Jons knee.
He is not allowed on the sofas but if he wants to do something he will, doesn't matter how many times you tell him NO eventually he will get what he wants - as I have found out with my hairbrushes.
At night he sneaks onto the sofa arranges the cushions as pillows and gets himself comfy.
Dalmatians shed continually, so every single morning I tell him off for being on the sofa and have to hoover the sofa and cushions!
Curtis did this to him but Henry just stayed asleep!
Watching for Curtis coming down the stairs so they can play!
I know I am not supposed to be on the sofa but if I don't make eye contact I can pretend I don't hear you....
Henry also eats things he really shouldn't do - lipsticks, hairbrushes, door stops, toilet rolls which he spits into tiny bits on the rug, eyes and noses from Curtis' soft toys.  He also steals things that he wants including boxes of chocolates, numerous blocks of cheese which he hides in his bed, a teeth whitening kit, bingo marker pens you name it!
He has loads of toys that he loves and he likes to carry his teddies around with him.

He needs lots of exercise and our house backs onto woodland and we have lots of fields by our house so he gets plenty of runs, we just have to keep an eye out for sheep!
Night, night Hen.

Hope you all enjoyed meeting Henry and if you are thinking of getting a Dalmatian you may want to think again ;)

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Stylfile Review

I actually got this in my July She Said Beauty box (review here) and it was the product I was most excited about getting in my box.  The Stylfile was invented by Tom Pellereau who was the winner of 2011's The Apprentice TV show.  It was marketed as the must-have beauty accessory for 2012. 

The Stylfile collection is a range of nail files designed with a unique curved shape that follows the natural shape of the nail. 
Made up of of three different file types, the new Stylfile collection makes filing easy, allowing you to have gorgeous nails in no time at all. The curved shape of the S-file, S-buffer and Emergency file makes filing either hand simple and means messy and uneven nails are a thing of the past.
The file is well packaged in plastic which can be reused to store the file.
The back of the packaging has clear instructions both written and with easy to follow pictures, it also tells you why Tom invented a nail file. 
Watching my sister file her nails one day, I hit upon the idea of a curved file. The curve of the S-file follows the nails’ natural shape, making it easy to achieve a great-looking finish, even when using your ‘other’ or non- dominant hand. As an engineer I've specially selected the abrasive to be long lasting - the S-file lasts up to 12 months*.
The file itself is quite long, the black and pink look nice together.  One surface is used to shape and the other side used to smooth.
Oh wiggly!
I actually found it really difficult to file my nails with it! 
I like my nails shaped quite squarish with rounded off edges and I found it impossible to shape them this way with this file so I went for a more "traditional" rounded nail shape.  
I found it very difficult to file the nails on my right hand and gave up a few times! 
The file is said to have a 12 month life but I could feel the difference in the roughness of the grit after one use.
These are my nails filed and painted, I don't really like the shape at all but I do have to say that they seemed to grow a lot longer when I filed them this shape and they didn't catch or snap as much as usual so that is definitely a positive.

I personally didn't like this product and I wouldn't repurchase it, I gave the file to my sister who has only just started taking an interest in doing her nails and she really likes it and finds it easy to use, so it might be the user rather than the file!

I think for the price I would rather spend £10-£15 on a glass/crystal nail file that has a lifetime guarantee.

If you did want to purchase one they cost £4.49 from the Stylfile website.

Have you tried this file? Any recommendations for a good file?

Don't forget to check out my worldwide MAC giveaway here.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

MAC Marilyn Monroe Giveaway!

When the MAC Marilyn collection was released in the UK earlier this week I knew I needed the Love Goddess lipstick after looking at swatches online, I'm glad I got it straight away as it  is now sold out online.

I purchased a second one from the MAC website to giveaway to one of my fabulous followers! The pics are of my lippy, the prize one is still in its box waiting to be posted off and adored by the winner!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Balmi v EOS

Hope you are all having a good weekend! 
Since I got my EOS Alice in Wonderland balms and my Balmi balms in my Latest in Beauty box and my September Joliebox I have had a lot of questions asking if they are the same or which one in my opinion is best, so here is a comparison review on the Blueberry Potion EOS balm and the blackcurrant Balmi.
EOS balms are not stocked in the UK but you can buy them on eBay for around £5-£6 inc postage, Balmi balms are stocked in Boots and retail for £4.99.
The EOS case has no scent at all, the Balmi has a very strong blackcurrant scent.
The EOS balm looks a lot bigger in the case but it holds 7g of product and the Balmi contains 10g.
Balmi has a message printed on the packaging warning that it contains Oxybenzone as it has an SPF of 15, EOS does not contain an SPF.
EOS has a pleasant blueberry muffin scent, Balmi has a very strong artificial blackcurrant scent.
Whilst they both apply nicely they are quite different in their texture, EOS is thick and balm like Balmi is thinner and feels more oily on the lips.
EOS balms are  100% natural and 95% organic they do not contain parabens, petrolatum, phthalates or gluten. They are also not tested on animals.
Blueberry Potion Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil*, Beeswax (Cire D'abeille)*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Natural Flavor, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter)*, Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Tocopherol, Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract *, Limonene, Linalool.

Balmi does not have anything about animal testing on the packaging so I am unsure if it is or isn't tested on animals.  Although if it isn't I am sure it would be marked on the packaging!
Blackcurrant Balmi Polybutene, Paraffinum liquidum, Petrolatum Ozokerite, Synthetic Wax, Ethylhexyl, Palmitate, Paraffin, Ethylhexy Methoxycinnamate, Cera Carnauba, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Benzophenone-3, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil, Aroma Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, CI 77891 

As you can see the ingredients are quite different, EOS contains beeswax Balmi Synthetic wax.  Balmi contains Petrolatum, Paraffin and Parabens EOS does not contain any of these.

EOS is the clear winner of the two for me, it smells much nicer and is made from natural ingredients, which as I am finding out more about what goes into cosmetics and skincare, is becoming more and more important to me.

Have you tried these balms? What did you think EOS or Balmi?

Thursday, 4 October 2012

EOS Alice in Wonderland Limited Edition Lip Balms

Look what the postman delivered today! How cute is this limited edition EOS Alice in Wonderland inspired lip balm set?! 

I saw this on another beauty blog, as I have a real soft spot for anything Disney and Alice in Wonderland is one my my favourite Disney characters I just had to get this.  EOS is not stocked in the UK so I bought this set from America on Ebay and it cost me approx. £14 inc international postage.
The set contains three limited edition lip balms
The balms are 100% natural and 95% organic
The packaging is lovely too - the mad hatters tea party and lots of Alices!
Look at the Mickey faces, I think it's a lovely detail
Blueberry Potion
This is my favourite out of the three, it smells really nice like blueberry muffins!
Watermelon Wonderland
I'm not sure I like the smell of this one, it doesn't smell like watermelon to me, in fact I think it smells quite "ashy".  I asked Curtis and he said he does think it smells like melon (without me telling him what it was) so it may be my nose. Luckily once it is applied I can't smell it!
Sweet Vanilla Nonsense
This smells like vanilla and also slightly nutty, it smells very natural and doesn't have that horrible cheap vanilla smell.

This is a really lovely set, I have a honeydew EOS balm that I keep on my desk in work that I have nearly used up so I was going to buy a new one to replace it but once I saw this set I couldn't resist!

Have you tried EOS balms? What do you think?