Thursday, 31 August 2017

How to make the most out of your spare time

how to make the most out of your spare time

In a world where women are busier than ever - it comes as no shock to reveal that we only get around 2 hours 45 minute spare time on average each work day. When you spend so much time at work it can be tempting to take your work home with you - responding to emails and completing tasks you didn't quite get round to in your 9-5. Whilst you may feel under pressure to keep on top of everything - it's more important than ever to keep your work and personal life separate in order to ensure you don't end up burning yourself out. So with the little spare time you do get, how should you spend them? I've got some fabulous tips which will help you sit back, relax and chill out.

Take some alone time
If you've been around people all day at work you may need some time to yourself to analyse your day. Instead of going home and jumping into conversation with your partner/housemate, greet them and then take five minutes to change and wind down on your own.

make a cup of tea in your spare time

It's time for a cuppa
You know if you start doing something enough, your mind will start to associate it with a certain time or activity. To indicate to your brain that stepping into your door is your time you  need to create a signal. It doesn't need to be anything complex - it could be throwing your coat on the hook, or making a cup of tea. By doing it everyday you're creating a signal in your mind that's time to switch off.

It's one or the other
Whilst we should be  proud as women that we can multi-task, doing two things at once - like watching telly and using your mobile at the same time  can overstimulate our brains. When we're trying to relax that's the last thing we need. Try watching TV for a hour or use just your phone. You'll probably find you'll enjoy it a lot more by focusing entirely on the one task.

put your feet up and chill out

Don't feel guilty about not working
Whilst you may feel that you need to fill every working hour with tasks, it's time to rethink that mindset. If you're constantly on the go you won't have the chance to relax and feel refreshed when you're at work which will affect your productivity. Remember you've been at work all day, you deserve that time to put your feet up if you want to.

Feeling restless?
Do you find when you're not at work, vacuuming or doing the washing up you feel restless and at a loose end. Try using your me time to do something you really want to do. That way you'll be focused and you'll enjoy it instead of reluctantly feeling like you 'have' to relax.  Plan out short activities like watch your favourite TV program, cook your dinner or play with the kids.

Put those files away
If you look around your room can you see any work related items peeking out? If you can't well done - but if you can - hide it now! Simply by seeing something work related, your mind instantly jumps to thinking about work. If you're struggling wiht your workload, or you're having issues with a colleague this may stir up negative connotations that can affect your relaxation time. Make sure that when you're at home nothing work related is in plain sight, that way your time will remain your time.

create a to do list to make it seem like you've achieved something

Create a mini to-do list
If you've got several projects on the go at work you may feel like you haven't achieved anything when it's time to go home. That isn't true of course - every step you put towards completing your projects is of course another tick in the box. Set up a short to do list with around 5 items that you know you've done that day. For example you sent an email relating to your project, completed that essential powerpoint presentation and so on.


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Primark Get Lippy kits - do they rival Kylie lip kits?

primark get lippy kits girls world matte lipstick

If your lip kit is as important to you as your pet dog, then you'll love Primark for upping its game (again) and releasing their Get Lippy range.

The Get Lippy kits which are available in metallic or matte shades, are perfect for a subtle daytime look or making a statement on a night out.

Set to rival the famous Kylie lip kits, the duo liquid lipstick and lip liners will certainly save you some dough (and time from waiting in endless digital queues).

When I purchased Get Lippy Girls World they had two glitter lips and 2 matte shades available to buy, but they're updating the collection all the time.

 After my recent Primark haul  I tried out Girls World for the first time, watch my first impressions of the lip kit and see whether I would recommend it.


Have you tried any of the Get Lippy kits? What did you think?

Get the kits for £3.00 in all good Primark stores.


Tuesday, 29 August 2017

6 easy ways to get rid of oily skin

6 easy ways to get rid of oily skin

Applying makeup on oily skin is tricky but making sure your makeup stays in place all day is a whole different story.

With excess oil, your cosmetics can easily wear off and slide off of your skin. This isn’t only frustrating but embarrassing, too.

To make sure that doesn’t happen, you need to know exactly how to apply and set your makeup.

Start off with a good primer. It will give you a smoother base to work on and it will keep your makeup on longer.

For your foundation, apply it in light layers and build up the coverage as you go. Don’t apply it too thickly as that can block your pores and make your skin worse.

Apply your bronzer and blush using a dabbing motion. Brushing the products on your skin can move your foundation and that’s the last thing you want to happen.

When setting your makeup, you can use a translucent powder for oily skin. Simply dust off a good amount on your skin using a brush or apply it with a puff.

Another good option is a makeup setting spray. There are setting sprays that are formulated to control oil and keep your skin matte all day. Try Barry M Make Mist and Fix matte finish spray (£4.99 at Asos)

As well as focusing on how you apply your makeup, you should also pay close attention to how you take care of your skin. To help you start a proper skin care routine for oily skin, follow the great tips in this infographic by Hannah Do from Thankyouskin.

       6 Easy Things You Can Do To Get Rid Of Oily SKin


Monday, 28 August 2017

Songmics cat tree review and competition

 songmics cat tree review

My cat is my little princess and I love to keep her entertained. She has no end of toys, whether it's balls, mice or dangly rods, but I always like to look for something a bit different. I was recently approached by Songmics who have a Amazon shop that sells a large range of products. They saw I had a cat and offered one of their cat trees to review.

The cat tree came in a huge box and came flat packed. Now I'm by no means a DIY expert but I did find it fairly easy to put together. The instructions didn't really have any real guidance on but it was relatively simple to get the gist of how to put it together. I did start off putting the only different sized post on the wrong place at first though!

The cat tree comes with a little bed in which your cat can lie, several scratching posts, a top stand to lie on and a swinging ball. The tree does seem slightly too heavy on the top stand and does occasionally have a tendency to topple over if your cat is overly energetic (as Tara is)

My cat generally does not like beds, she prefers to just lie down on a cold floor or a sofa (weird animal). So to get her to use the cat tree is quite a feat. For most of the week she ignored it apart from to bat at the ball, or scratch her claws - but then victory - I caught her lying on the top of the tree.

Hopefully the cat tree will grow on Tara and I may be able to encourage her with treats but at least she's tried it out.

Do you want your little fur baby to win a cat tree from Songmics? To enter simply follow the rafflecopter instructions below.


If you don't fancy waiting and want your cat to have one of the trees now, you can buy them for £29.99 on Amazon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and conditions 
To enter the competition there are a few mandatory entries. You will need to follow me on YouTube, subscribe to my newsletter, visit songmics on Facebook, share on Facebook and tag 3 friends. All other entries are optional but will give you more points which will increase your chance of winning.  Competition will run from 28th August 2017 to 28th September 2017 and will start and finish at midnight.


Friday, 25 August 2017

Look Incredible Deluxe August unboxing

look incredible deluxe beauty box unboxing

This months look incredible box has probably got to be one of the best yet. With a collection of top range brands including Too Faced and Mac, August's box is one that will not disappoint.

too faced funfetti eyeshadow palette

Too Faced Funfetti eyeshadow palette 
Till I subscribed to Look Incredible I don't think I even owned any Too Faced makeup. Now I've tried a number of different cosmetics from their range. This month includes the Too Faced Funfetti palette, a collection of 12 matte and shimmer shades that look fabulous. It comes in a super cute heart adorned palette and is the ultimate girly fashion accessory.
Grab it for £30 (I can't find anywhere it's available online sorry!)

kiehl's powerful strength eye brightening concentrate

Kiehls powerful strength eye brightening concentrate
This is a dream product I've been crying out for. The Brightening Concentrate has been designed specifically for the eye area and helps to reduce the appearance of dark circles, crow's feet and fine lines. Its enriched with vitamin 10.5% vitamin c and haloxyl to ensure eyes are looking bright and beautiful. I have a few significant fine lines and dark circles that I'd love to reduce and I'm really hoping this will work on those.
Get it for £39.50 at Liberty

nars velvet lip liner in patong beach

NARS Velvet lip liner in Patong Beach 
A rich pigmented lip liner that gives vivid colour that has been designed to last for hours. It has a non drying formula that is enriched with vitamin E and special emollients to ensure a creamy application. Patong Beach is a browny red shade and whilst my lipsticks are normally a bit brighter it may come in use at some point.
Get it for £18 at Net-a-Porter

mac nail lacquer in screaming bright

MAC nail lacquer in Screaming Bright 
A super bright metallic gold nail varnish which is perfect for super pigmented nails. A great nail varnish to try out the metallic nail trend.
Grab it for £12.98 on Amazon

I'm really excited to try out the products in the box, especially the eyeshadow palette and brightening eye concentrate. It's always great to discover new products and even better when you only pay £35 for 4 premium products at Look Incredible.


Thursday, 24 August 2017

Bourjois Colorboost lipstick in Red Island review

bourjois colorboost lipstick in red island review

What the brand says
Bourjois Color Boost Glossy Finish lipstick has been created with a new generation formula that combines fabulous colour with a bare lip sensation. The lipstick has been formulated with silk extract to ensure comfort and hydration for at least 10 hours.

Available in 10 fabulous shades.

The Lowdown 
What could be better than a lipstick that combines great colour with gorgeous gloss. I've tried a few lip crayons but after reading what Bourjois had to say about this I had high expectations. Red island is a lovely berry red shade - not overly bold but great for work or a casual day out.

bourjois colorboost lipstick in red island swatch

The lipstick has a glossy formula and the colour easily glides on. It has a chubby crayon applicator so it's a lot easier to get a precision finish. The colour is pretty pigmented and builds up quickly to give full coverage. It's comfortable to wear and despite having a glossy finish it isn't sticky, it feels very light and hydrating. With SPF 15 there's no need for any separate protection, you can simply pop it on and go. It has a very faint scent but it's not really noticeable.

before and after bourjois colorboost lipstick in red island

The lipstick lasted surprisingly longer than its some matte lipsticks I've tried - albeit not the 10 hours it claims to last. The lipstick was still visible after around 3-4 hours, despite eating and drinking (although this did reduce the pigment slightly) but it was definitely still visible after this.

wearing bourjois colorboost lipstick in red island

Grab it for £3.99 on Xtras

  • Contains SPF 15 so you don't need separate lip protection
  • Moisturising and hydrating
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Great pigment
  • Lasts a lot longer then most matte lipsticks
  • Colour is instant - no need to build up the coverage
  • Crayon style applicator makes it easy to apply

  • Does not last 10 hours as it claims
bourjois colorboost lipstick red island


Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Ombre lip tutorial

ombre lip tutorial

Add a little va va voom to your look by ditching your go-to lippy and opting for a ombre lip. Ombre lips require two contrasting lip colours to create a contrast effect that really stands out. So want lips your friends will be jealous of? Simply follow this easy tutorial.

I used a combination of hot red and pink shades but you  can use any contrasting colours to create an ombre finish.

obsessive compulsive cosmetics white lip liner
1. Line your lips with a white lip liner to ensure you get a clean finish without any bleeding or feathering. (edit - I don't have any white lip liners at the moment so I skipped this step)
Try Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics white lip liner £7.88 from Beauty Bay

bh cosmetics waterproof lip liner in delight

2. Use a bright red lip liner and fill in the rest of your lips so the red will be super vibrant.
Try BH  Cosmetics Waterproof lip liner in Delight - £4.00 at Beauty Bay 

nars sheer lipstick in manhunt
3. Apply a bright red lipstick over the liner with a lip brush so you get a precision finish
Try Nars Sheer lipstick in Manhunt £21 at Net-a-Porter 

nyx sheer lipstick in manhunt

4. Make sure your lippy stays put by applying a matte red lipstick in a similar shade to the lipstick you applied in step 3
Try NYX Matte lipstick in Alabama £6.99 at Very

illamasqua lipstick in climax

5. Grab a pink lipstick and gently dab colour to the centre of your lips
Try Illamasqua lipstick in Climax £20 at Net-a-Porter

Have fun showing off your new look!

ombre lip tutorial

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

SmileLab Teeth Whitening Strips - The Results

smilelab tooth whitening strips the results

What the brand says
If  you want a whiter smile you may be drawn in by the hundreds of whitening toothpastes and strips on the market. So what should you opt for - tooth paste or strips?

SmileLab has designed a 14 day whitening program that helps to remove old and new discolouration whilst reducing plaque and bacteria.

The strips have been designed to be user friendly and they're peroxide free so you know you're not adding unnecessary chemicals to your teeth.

The Lowdown
For the last 2 weeks I've been testing out SmileLab, to see if ultimately I got a whiter smile. The whitening strips were really easy to use - I simply placed one strip on my top teeth and one on the bottom. As mentioned before they don't cover all your teeth, just those that are visible. Over the half hour the gel on the strips works at removing stains and bacteria whilst increasing the whiteness of my teeth.

So what did I think? 

All in all my thoughts were mixed about the strips. After taking them off there was a fair bit of gel left over which I had to get rid of and I did feel the strips made my teeth seem a little more sensitive.

I recorded my experience during the 14 days taking a picture after using each strip. In my SmileLab diary picture I haven't included every picture but you can see the journey my teeth went on. There are differences in lighting which did affect how bright my teeth look but it's definitely the before and after photos that matter the most. After the 14 days I feel that my teeth do seem a tiny bit brighter and are a little bit whiter.

smilelab tooth whitening strips the results

Often tooth whitening strips work pretty well in whitening teeth. Whilst the results with SmileLab are not amazing, they did brighten my teeth slightly and made them appear slightly whiter.

If you're after a really good whitening product however I would recommend Doll White whitening strips or even Richard Marques Strong Teeth whitening toothpaste.

I give SmileLab 2/5

Get it for £25.33 at Boots (reduced from £38.00!)

before and after smilelab tooth whitening strips

  • Easy to use
  • Works over a 14 day period so you can use it in the run up to a event
  • My teeth appeared slightly brighter after the 14 days

  • The strips left my teeth feeling sweaty and I had to remove a lot of gel after taking the strips off
  • I did feel my teeth seemed a little more sensitive after using the strips


Monday, 21 August 2017

Ps.. Bronze Baked Shimmer review

primark ps... bronze baked shimmer review

Ps.. Bronze Baked shimmer is a trio of bronzers and a highlighter. The highlighter is a off white whilst the bronzers have two gradient brown shades. When I swatched the Ps... Bronze I was in two minds about it. The highlighter seemed quite dull and powdery but the bronzers were  pigmented with a subtle shimmer.

primark ps... bronze baked shimmer swatches

The moment I applied the highlighter to my face my initial doubts about the PS...Bronze disappeared. The highlighter appears super pigmented on my face and left a gorgeous shimmer along the top of my cheekbones. There was no need to build up the product and pretty much no blending was required. As the bronzers were quite shimmery I wasn't really sure of what sort of result I'd get using it as a bronze and whether I'd end up looking like a glitter ball. Fortunately the shimmer wasn't overly visible and it added a bit of warmth to my look. The bronze effect is quite subtle and it did take a little while to get a sculpted look.

primark ps... bronze baked shimmer close up

The effects of the highlighter lasted for hours and it's only in the evening that the highlighter faded away into a slight glitter effect. The bronzers also lasted well into the evening but as mentioned earlier they were not as visible as the highlighter.

For £2.50 this is a handy little product that packs a good punch. I love the intensity of the highlight and the warm sculpted look I got from the bronzer.

Available in all good Primark stores.

I give it 4/5

  • 2 bronzers and a highlighter in one product for just £2.50
  • The highlighter is really pigmented and lasts for hours
  • Despite being shimmery the bronzers don't leave you looking like a glitter ball
  • The bronze effect is quite slight so does take quite a while to build it up to get a visible bronzed effect


Friday, 18 August 2017

5 holiday hacks that will make your trip one to remember

5 holiday hacks that will make your trip one to remember

If you're off on your holidays you're probably already imagining the bliss you'll feel when you sip your first Strawberry Daiquiri.

Your bags are packed, your passports safely in your handbag and you're ready to hop onto that plane.

So how do you make it the holiday of a lifetime? Here's 5 holidays hacks which will make your getaway one to remember.

lift your chin to take a great selfie

Be selfie perfect
If you're worried about your wrinkles and fine lines showing up in your selfies - simply lift your chin  up. Lifting your chin up can take years off your face.

Worried about showing your body in a swimsuit?
If you're conscious about your body you may worry about baring all on a beach full of bikini clad women. To make it a little easier go for a block colour one piece swimsuit. The streamlined effect will help boost your confidence.

wash your toes in the sea to get rid of sand

Don't like sand in your toes?
The feeling of sandy toes is annoying and can take forever to get off. The best way to get rid of it is by rinsing your toes in the sea. If you want to avoid it in the first place try dusting baby powder over dry feet so the sand will rub off more easily.

Try an alternative to water
If you're not a fan of water why not try coconut water. You can have it fresh or from the carton and it's a fabulous way of hydrating your skin.

rise with the sun to raise your serotonin levels

Rise with the sun
You may hate waking up at sunrise when you're at home but on holiday it's a whole different story. Not only will you grab the best sun lounger by rising with the larks but the sunrise will also help to boost your serotonin levels. Win win!


Thursday, 17 August 2017

Tartiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family

Tartiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family review

What the brand says
Tarte have teamed up with Youtube sensation Grav3yardgirl to create two exclusive shades of long lasting lip paint. The two features shades include a everyday greige and Grave3yardgirl inspired bold red.

The Lowdown
During my recent Tarte haul I picked up Swamp Family, a lovely mid red shade. Whilst the formula has been designed to have a smooth creamy mousse formula, I did feel it was quite thick and gloopy.

The Lip paint is smooth and easy to apply and had really strong pigment. Unlike some Lip products which are a little patchy and take a while to build up to full coverage, this was pretty much instant. The colour isn't as bold as I've had imagined and is more of a neutral red. I noticed that it had a bit of a strange smell - like a off mint. The finish is matte and it wasn't overly drying.

Tartiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family swatch

Most of the lipstick had pretty much faded after a few hours and it was only the outline that remained. After eating and drinking the lip paint faded a lot quicker which I was quite disappointed with.

before and after Tartiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family

Whilst Swamp Family is a lovely shade of red, I felt the smell was a bit off putting and for a matte lip stick it certainly could have lasted longer.

wearing artiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family

I give it 2/5

Grab it for £10 at Tarte


  • Pretty pigmented
  • Coverage builds up quickly


  • Gloopy formula 
  • Only lasts a few hours
tartiest Tarte Lip Paint in Swamp Family review pinterest

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