Friday, 29 September 2017

L'Oreal Paradise mascara review

l'oreal paradise mascara review

This August L'Oreal unveiled a mucn anticipated secret on the UK - the L'Oreal Paradise mascara.

A cult favourite in the US it took its time to hit UK shores but L'Oreal fans rushed to try out the much loved mascara.

As soon as I heard of the release I had to snap it up - and of course I filmed my experience.


Have you tried L'Oreal's new mascara yet, do let me know what you thought in the comments below.

Grab it for £11.99 at Superdrug

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Healthy comfort food ideas

healthy comfort food

On a cold Autumn evening I like nothing more than tucking into a boiling hot plate of cottage pie or sausage and mash. Whilst they certainly do taste amazing, comfort foods can be  quite calorific which is of course not good for your waist line. So how can you still enjoy your favourite comfort foods without sacrificing on taste? the answer is simple - sacrifice the bad for the good. I'll be focusing on three of the favourite comfort foods; cottage pie, sausage and mash and spaghetti bolognaise and give you advice on how to turn comfort foods into healthy foods.

healthy cottage pie

Cottage pie
Typically a cottage pie is made with beef mince, vegetables, mash potato and beef gravy. The typical ingredients in Cottage pie often contain a fair amount of calories and fat- something you probably want to avoid if you're trying to lose weight.

Switch it up
So how can you change the traditional cottage pie to become healthier without losing all the elements that make this dish one of the top comfort foods.

Swap beef for turkey mince
They look pretty similar but are quite different in terms of nutritional values.

  • Beef mince is typically 124 calories per 100g whilst turkey mince has only 100
  • Beef mince has 4.5g of fat whilst turkey only has 1.2g
  • Beef mince has 2.0g of fat that saturates whilst turkey only has 0.6g

Use sweet potatoes for your mash
Generally sweet potatoes and white potatoes are all good for you  in different ways, however  the level of Vitamins in sweet potatoes far outweigh their whiter relatives.

  • Sweet potatoes have 380% the amount of Vitamin A to white potatoes (if this isn't the perfect reason to switch to sweet potatoes I don't  know what is!)
  • Sweet potatoes has on average 90 calories per 100g portion in comparison to 92 for a white potato (not a massive difference, but every little helps!)

Chuck in extra vegetables
I don't know how you typically make your cottage pie but when I make it I tend to stick to the basics, peas and carrots. To add a bit more bulk and vitamin to your  meal why not add in extra vegetables like swede, turnips and leeks.

healthy sausage and mash

Sausage and mash
The good ol' British favourite sausage and mash. I love mine with buttery mash drenched in onion gravy. So it is possible to make an old favourite healthy by removing some of the most vital ingredients? Of course it is.

Switch it up
The important thing to remember is that you should keep the premise of your meal as similar as possible to how you imagine it.The subtle change of ingredients are much better for you but it'll taste so nice you'll barely notice it.

Swap pork sausages for chicken

  • Did you know pork sausages contain a massive 290-455 calories per link? That's in comparison to a mere 140-160 in chicken sausages.
  • Pork sausages have on average 23-38 grams of fat whilst chicken sausages only have 7-10 grams - that's a massive difference. 

Red is best
If you're looking for a healthier way to eat your mash then it's worth looking at those potatoes varieties with darker coloured flesh. Varieties include Purple Viking, Yukon Gold and Ruby Crescent. Remember to keep the skin on when mashing.

  • Red potatoes have at least 10% of the recommend requirement of Vitamin B6
  • Mashed red potatoes contain considerable more energy driving carbohydrates then a bowl of pasta. 
  • Red potatoes have a naturally buttery texture which eliminates the need to melt butter into your mash. This makes the most vital ingredient of sausage and mash fat free - winner!
  • Red potatoes have around 20% of potassium - a banana only has 9%
  • They're gluten free - if you have to stick to a gluten free diet this will be be a happy revelation. 
  • It's packed full of Vitamin C

zucchini spaghetti

Spaghetti bolognaise
I love a touch of Italian and spaghetti bolognaise is probably one of my favourite dishes - if it's done right. Whilst it's probably a lot better for you then burger and chips, spaghetti is jam packed with carbs which can be heavy in calories. Don't stress you don't have to give up your favourite Saturday night treat - you just need to get creative.

Switch it up
When it comes to healthier ingredients with spaghetti boleganise it's important to think outside the box. Whilst it may not taste completely hte same, it's definitely worth trying for the health benefits.

Courgette spaghetti
Courgetti - also known as Zucchini or summer squash is an amazingly healthy switch for traditional spaghetti.

  • in regular spaghetti there is around 581 calories whilst courgettes only have 30
  • regular pasta has around 121g in carbohydrates whilst  courgettes only has 6.2g

Pork mince
Another alternative to steak mince is pork mince - why not give it a try?

  • Pork mince has around 161 calories per 100g in comparison to a whopping 332 calories for beef
  • It only contains around 7g of fat per 100g vs 30g in beef mince
  • Fat saturates at only 4g per 100g in comparison to a massive 11g in beef.

I hope you have fun trying out the new versions of the old favourites. Do let me know what you think and whether you'd do a permanent swap!

healthy comfort food ideas


Wednesday, 27 September 2017

10 of the best Halloween makeup tutorials

10 of the best halloween makeup tutorials

Whether you want to shock your friends on Halloween with a grotesque face of scars and gaping wounds or you prefer a green faced witch, this is one night in which your makeup will take centre stage. I've searched Youtube to find 10 of the best Halloween makeup tutorials (including compilations). Some of these are super scary guys!

Glam Zombie by Nikkie Tutorials

Sewed shut mouth by Karolina Maria

Horror smiley by Nadine Mayerhofer

Mutated Monster Alice in Wonderland by Jordan Hanz

Nightmares Halloween makeup tutorial by Ellimacs SFX makeup

Voodoo Doll halloween makeup tutorial by Ellimacs SFX tutorials

Top 15 easy halloween makeup tutorials by Makeup Halloween

Jack-O-Lantern Halloween makeup tutorial by Glam and Gore

Creepy Clown Halloween makeup tutorial by Nikkie Tutorials

Masquerade Flesh Mask Halloween makeup tutorial by Bonnie Corban SFX

10 of the best halloween makeup tutorials


Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Maybelline Superstay 24 Matte Ink lipstick review

maybelline superstay 24 matte ink lipstick review

What the brand says
Maybelline's new Matte Ink lipsticks combine the intense colour of a ink with the  flawless, chic finish of a matte lipstick.

Designed for 12 hour wear, Maybelline claim that you'll get a second skin effect in just one stroke.

The Lowdown
Like most beauty gurus I've tried my fair share of matte lipsticks. With everything from patchy application to dry lips, it's hard to find a matte lipstick with the perfect formula.

Whilst most matte lipsticks do tend to have quite strong pigmented colour,  I thought the idea of a ink was quite interesting. It suggests that the finish is quite glossy but with a matte finish which is a little out of the norm.

maybelline superstay 24 matte ink lipstick swatches

For my review I'm testing out the shades Heroine, a orange red shade and Lover, a plum pink. The lipsticks have a teardrop shaped applicator to make it easier to apply and have a gorgeous vanilla scent.

before and after maybelline superstay 24 matte ink lipstick heroine
before and after maybelline superstay 24 matte ink lipstick lover

The lip ink appears to apply quite smoothly initially and I was amazed at how strong the pigment was. It did feel quite sticky as it dried but once I got past that it felt quite comfortable to wear. Unfortunately as the ink dried it started to bunch up and look patchy. I had to redo my application of Heroine around 7 times to get a look I was happy with. Lover was not so hard to work with and didn't have the same sort of patchy finish as Heroine. The lip ink intensity is so strong it lasts all day, however it's not full coverage colour and is patchy in places. You would only notice the patchiness up close however.

wearing maybelline superstay lipstick in heroine

I love how strong the colours are in Maybelline's Super Stay Matte Ink but I really wasn't impressed at how it often dried into a patchy finish, no matter how smooth the initial application was. Whilst the patchiness is annoying I was really impressed with how long the majority of the lip ink lasts without fading away.

wearing maybelline superstay lipstick in lover

I give it 3/5

Get Heroine for £9.99 at Superdrug and Lover for £9.99 at Boots


  • Amazing pigmented colour 
  • Lasts for ages 
  • Teardrop applicator makes it easier to apply
  • Has a lovely vanilla scent 
  • Most of the colour lasts all day


  • Feels sticky initially when applied 
  • Starts to dry into patches on the stronger colours so the finish doesn't look smooth 

maybelline superstay 24 matte ink lipstick review pinterest


Monday, 25 September 2017

Candle wishlist

Let me tell you a secret - until earlier this year I had never bought a single candle.

Why I hear you say? Well my dad is a little bit strict and is not the biggest fan of naked flames burning (even from something as innocent as a candle). So when he moved out it was time to strike and I bought some of my first ever candles.

Candles are perfect for warming up a room and so many candles these days have a gorgeous  scent that makes your room smell amazing. With everything fron luxury brands like Jo Malone to budget friendly Yankee Candle the choice is endless, have a look at some of the candles currently on my wishlist.

 Burberry Beauty Black Amber scented candle

Burberry Beauty Black Amber scented candle
A classic looking candle that is instilled with relaxing notes of vanilla, patchouli and white musk. It will leave your room smelling like a sweet courtyard of flowers.
Get it for £70 at Net-a-Porter 

Neom Ylang Ylang candle

Neom Ylang Ylang candle
If you're feeling pretty stressed out the Ylang Ylang candle from Neom will help to burn your stresses away. Hand poured in Britain, the candles contain ethically sourced wax that has top notes of Ylang Ylang, heart of Frankincense and base layers of Patchouli.
Grab it for £45 at Net-a-Porter 

Max Benjamin Amalfi scented candle Dolce Sole

Max Benjamin Amalfi scented candle Dolce Sole
Experience the delights of the Amalfi coast with this gorgeous flower adorned candle. It blends notes of grapefruit, tangerine, mandarin and patchouli with base notes of vetiver and musk. A real fruit cocktail!
Get it for £26 at Amara  

Yankee Candle Black Cherry

Yankee Candle Black Cherry 
I can't not mention Yankee Candle in a wish list now can I!? Yankee Candle Black Cherry is one of my favourite scents, I've got the car air freshener and I love it.
Get it for £19.99 at Littlewoods 

Coqui Coco Coco scented candle

Coqui Coco Coco scented candle
If you like your candles a little more unusual then you'll love this delight from Coqui. The scent is inspired by the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula coconut groves.
Get it for £45 from Net-a-Porter  

Jo  Loves Log Fires scented candle

Jo  Loves Log Fires scented candle
A little unusual I give you that but if you love the smell of a roaring fire - and don't have one at home, then this may help you envision cosy nights in front of the fire.
Get it for £55 at Net-a-Porter 

JS Candle Studio Pink Orchid and Amber Votive

JS Candle Studio Pink Orchid and Amber Votive
A delightful white coconut wax candle infused with the scent of orchid blossoms and sensual amber. Dye and phthalate free.
Get it for £10 at Wolf and Badger 

 Voluspa Japonica limited edition candle in Santiago Huckleberry

Voluspa Japonica limited edition candle in Santiago Huckleberry
What could be better then a candle that is both pretty and smells amazing? Santiago Huckleberry is a limited edition glass candle that comes complete with a stunning decorative scalloped edge. The candle is infused with huckleberry, vanilla and crushed sugar cane for a fruity yet citrus scent.
Get it for £24 at Amara 

molton brown delicious rhubarb and rose three wick candle

Molton Brown Delicious Rhubarb and Rose three wick candle
I can't say I come across many pink candles in my day to day life. It's certainly a girly girls dream. The candle has been composed with notes of bitter rhubarb, zesty grapefruit and yuzu to give off a alluring sweet aroma.
Get it for £60 at John Lewis 
espa energising candle

ESPA Energising candle
Feeling like you're struggling to get through the day? The ESPA Energising candle contains notes of peppermint, eucalyptus, lime and rosemary to enlighten and awaken your senses.
Get it for £26 at John Lewis 

candle wishlist pinterest


Friday, 22 September 2017

Get natural looking brows with Maybelline Tattoo Brow

get natural looking brows with maybelline tattoo brow

What the brand says
The new Tattoo Brow by Maybelline is the first peelable brow gel to hit the market. If you're bored of having to constantly visit the salon to get great looking brows then Tattoo Brow is the product for you. It's available in three shades, medium blonde, medium brown and dark brown.

The Lowdown
I love it when my brows are on fleek but what I don't love is the upkeep it requires. I'm very much a girl who likes to apply and go and I often forget to fill in my brows on a daily basis.

Maybelline Tattoo Brow was a chance discovery on a recent shopping trip and I can honestly say I've not yet seen a product like it. Taking the pain out of doing your brows - it promises tattoo like brows for up to 3 days.

The product has a black ink like consistency that did look quite thick on first impressions. Tattoo brow works by drying into a peelable skin that you peel off after at least 20 minutes. If you want the 3 day effect you do need to keep it on for at least 2 hours - a bit of a pain if you're rushing around to get ready.

maybelline tattoo brow review

It was easy to apply and I quickly got my preferred brow shape with the ink. It does look like a normal liquid brow finish though so I'm not sure how I'm going to peel it off when it dries.

The product was really comfortable on my skin and didn't feel at all sticky or irritating.

It was a bit tricky to peel off and I was worried to see a few brow hairs caught in the residue! However once I had got it all off I was pleased with the result. Despite the shade being dark brown which I thought would be too dark for me it matched perfectly. The look is really natural and I have a perfectly filled brow arch. As you can see in the before photo my eyebrows are really fair and the left is missing the end (not sure how that happened!) this really rectified them and made them look really nice. The finished look is slightly faint and that may be because I didn't use a huge amount of product.

I give Tattoo Brow 4/5

Get it for £12.99 at Superdrug

before and after maybelline tattoo brow

  • Looks really natural 
  • Easy to apply and use 
  • Blended in perfectly with my natural brow colour 
  • Comfortable to wear 
  • When peeling the product off it took some of my brow hairs with it 
  • Can take up to two hours to dry if you want 3 dAy wear. Maybe a bit long if you're in a rush.
maybelline tattoo brow review pinterest


Thursday, 21 September 2017

6 of the best Autumn berry lipsticks

6 of the best autumn berry lipsticks

Hot chocolate, fluffy marshmallows and crunchy leaves, Autumn is full of colour. With colour all around you it's the perfect time to try something new and embrace warmer colours with your makeup. Berry shades are a great way to warm your face up and lipsticks are a great place to start. Here's a collection of some of my favourites.

burts bees brimming berry lipstick

Burts Bees Brimming Berry lipstick
A gorgeous vivid berry shade that's designed for 8 hours wear. Made with 100% natural ingredients.
Get it for £9.99 at Superdrug
bite beauty amuse bouche lipstick in rouge berry

Bite Beauty Amuse bouche lipstick in Rouge Berry
A dark vampy berry shade, perfect as the finishing touch to your look.
Get it for £20.22 at Sephora 
maybelline color sensational lipstick in Berry Bossy

Maybelline Color Sensational Loaded Bolds lipstick in Berry Bossy
Show who's boss with this vivid berry shade.
Get it for £6.99 at Superdrug 
gerard cosmetics lipstick in dragon berry

Gerard Cosmetics lipstick in Dragon Berry
If you don't want to go too bold, you can always go for the middle road with this light pink/berry shade.
Get it for £9.50 at Beauty Bay 
dose of colours lipstick in berry me

Dose of Colors matte lipstick in Berry Me
Prefer the matte look? Dose of Colours matte lipstick in Berry Me is a liquid lipstick that dries to a matte finish. Vegan friendly.
Get it for £16 at Beauty Bay 
lemetier de beaute moisture matte lipstick in smoke

LeMetier De Beaute moisture matte lipstick in Smoke
This mysterious purple shade is the perfect finish to a natural eye. Keep the rest of your makeup simple to make your lips stand out.
Available for £26 at Net-a-Porter 


Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Newa anti ageing device before and after - a blogger's experience

newa anti ageing device before and after

In early june I started using the Newa anti ageing device - a new unique treatment that claimed to reduce wrinkles by  36%.

The device could be used in the comfort of your own home, and used 3Deep technology to stimulate the production of new healthier collagen.

3Deep Technology has been used by dermatologists and clinics around the world and has been proven effective in reducing fines lines and wrinkles.

newa lift activating gel

On paper it sounded great, and whilst it's a little expensive, if it worked it could be revolutionary.

Admittedly I did test this a little longer than the 6 weeks it claims it took to work, so the Newa device had every chance to take effect.

I'll be honest I found using the device more than a little bit of a chore. Having to come out of the bathroom every night to plug it in was a little irritating and really broke my usual routine as it couldn't be used in the bathroom. The Lift Activator gel has a rather odd scent and often the device would burn my skin, even on the lowest setting. I don't know if it's connected but I also came out in a weird clear spotty rash at one point when I used it in between my eyes.

Unfortunately I didn't notice any different in the visibility of my fine lines. Whilst I don't have any obvious deep wrinkles, I do feel the fine lines are pretty deep and I'm disappointed it didn't have any real effect.

For the price of this device, the lack of results and the inconvenience I probably wouldn't recommend the Newa. If you find that the depth of your wrinkles is a lot more significant it may potentially work for you and it's worth giving it a try.

I'm giving the Newa anti-ageing device 1/5

Get it for £348.99 on Amazon


  • A new concept of reversing the signs of ageing
  • Has two different heat settings for different effects


  • The higher setting constantly burns my skin, even the lower setting has a tendency to burn
  • I didn't see any noticeable visible result
  • Expensive
  • Inconvenient to use as it needs to be plugged in 


Tuesday, 19 September 2017

8 top tips on beating the Winter blues

8 top tips on beating the winter blues

The one thing I find so hard to contend with in Winter is the dark mornings and the long nights. Waking up in the dark just feels so unnatural to me and it can feel very bleak having so little light during the Winter period. We're brought up to associate the dark with bedtime so it can be hard to adjust when the darkness creeps in. Whilst I don't think I suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder ("SAD") I definitely think  it's important to come up with coping strategies to make the transition to less light a lot easier. Here's some of my top tips.

avoid the snooze button to beat the winter blues

Avoid the snooze button
Whilst it's so tempting to keep hitting snooze when it's so dark outside, it will play havoc with your routine. By allowing yourself to oversleep your body clock will get confused with the mixed signals you're giving it. When you finally have to get up early you'll find you may feel more lethargic and tired then normal as your body has become out of sync.

Buy a light box
If you really do struggle with the dark mornings you may want to invest in a light box. They're a lot brighter than normal lights and can be set up to light up gradually just like the rising sun. By using a light box for 30 minutes a day you'll receive the adequate amount of light you need to stay happy and healthy.
Try the Lumia Arabica SAD light (£103.56 on Amazon)

exercise in daylight to beat the winter blues

Exercise in daylight
Combine exercising (which can release serotonin, the happy hormone) with day light in order to get a really feel good feeling. By exercising in the open you'll be exposed to more light than normal which will help to raise your mood. If you can't get out make sure you still incorporate exercise into your daily routine and keep it to the same time each day.

Eat at the same time
Regardless of what season it is, it's important to keep a routine. Whilst we may lack light in Autumn and Winter our body clocks respond to timing, and keeping things consistent will help keep the blues at bay.

plan a holiday to beat the winter blues

Plan a holiday
What could make you happier then the thought of relaxing on a sun kissed island? Holidays are a great way of cheering you up as you start to look forward to warmer days in the upcoming months.

Eat cheer me up food.
Sweets are full of sugar and may initially raise your mood as your blood sugar spikes. However the feeling is often temporary as a drop in blood sugar levels can result in feelings of sadness. Opt for food like chocolate (mainly dark chocolate) which is created with cocoa beans, an ingredient which can reduce anxiety whilst increasing your alertness and mood. What better reason could you have for eating chocolate!?

listen to music to beat the winter blues

Turn that music up
A good upbeat tune can really raise your mood as you start to bop and sing along to the rhythmic beat. Try to avoid the Celine Dion tunes though...

Lend a hand
You know that warm happy feeling you get inside when you help someone out? Well the benefits last a lot longer than you think. Regular volunteering can help  to lower your stress levels and improve your overall mood. You're also be happy knowing your work is doing so much to help to others. Win win.

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