Sunday, 29 September 2013

Get motivated and work out in style!

The wet weather and darker evenings have arrived letting us know that summer is officially over. Colder mornings make it harder to get out of bed and feel less enthusiastic about doing that morning work-out, but just because the sun has disappeared it doesn’t mean your fitness routine should too. Get motivated and work out in style with these cool, colourful pieces.
 

 
 



 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

 
 

 
 
 
Holly xx
 


Thursday, 26 September 2013

Toni & Guy Glamour Volume Plumping Whip

 
The latest addition to my hair care collection comes in the form of the Toni & Guy Glamour Volume Plumping Whip £7.19. After reading here that it was the product used on the models backstage at LFW I decided to try it out myself.
The product promises to ‘add volume and body at the roots while still providing flexible texture and movement through the lengths’ - which is ideal if like me you are looking for a product that gives volume to fine hair without weighing it down.
I would describe the texture as a mixture between a mousse and a serum – as the name describes it literally is a whip. The pot is very small however you only need to use a ‘walnut sized’ amount so I think that it will last a while. I applied the whip to towel dried hair and then blow dried upside down.
Although I wouldn’t say that the difference was amazing, my hair was still noticeably bouncier and I did notice slightly more volume. I will continue to use it and perhaps by using a little more product next time the results may improve, currently I would rate it 6/10.
Have you tried the Glamour Volume Plumping Whip or any other products from the Toni & Guy range? What did you think?
Holly xx


Monday, 23 September 2013

Luxe Beauty Wishlist

Week one of being a student is officially complete. I have already finished a pile of homework and have come to terms with the fact that I won't be getting a pay cheque at the end of the month – eek!
Money issues aside - I am LOVING it! Being back in education, getting to know new people and being in an environment where everyone is going through the same experience feels refreshing and exciting, I wonder how long this will last for…
Despite the fact that I am having to reign in my spending and prioritise ‘essential items’ over things such as that new MAC lippie I have my eye on… I have found time to browse through the latest luxe beauty items that I only wish I could afford, here are the top 10 items I am currently lusting after…
 

 
 
Rose gold is one of my favourite colours, this polish adds a touch of glamour for a luxe and stylish mani.
 
 
 
Bobbi & Katie Mini Brush Set £45


What make-up kit is complete without good brushes? This set contains the essentials and comes in a cute, travel-friendly case.


 
 
A classic look that I love that never goes out of fashion is the smokey eye, and how gorgeous are these Dior shades?
 
 
 

Modern Muse is the latest fragrance offering from Estee Lauder and is described as an ‘alluring contrast of sparkling florals and sleek, sensual woods’.
 

 
 
Skincare is essential in any woman’s routine and this cream promises to moisturise for up to 24 hours and leave skin feeling healthy and well-balanced.
 
 
Lancome Blush Rose Desir £35


This blush is designed to illuminate and add a warm glow to cheeks, plus how cute is the packaging?



MAC Lipstick in Sweet Succulence £15

One thing I love about fall is the transition from summery, nude, pastel shades to warm, berry tones. This lippie fits the trend perfectly.


 
 
I adore face, body and hair oils. You can imagine my delight when I discovered this multi-tasking oil that can be used on all three, and to make me love it even more it has a delicious, sweet, floral scent.
 
 
 
This mascara gives lashes volume and length and the chic gold packaging looks glam in any make-up bag.
 
 
 
I am never one to shy away from a touch of sparkle. This body shimmer is the perfect way to add shimmer to your look and can be used both on the face and body.

Holly xx




Sunday, 15 September 2013

Yes, another lip crayon!

 
 
 
 
Ever since trying the Revlon Just bitten lip crayon a couple of weeks ago I have been itching to buy another. When browsing through beauty items on eBay the other day (dangerous) I came across this jumbo lip crayon which is a copy of the Clinique/Revlon/Bourjois crayons but is just a fraction of the price. Of course I expected the quality to be much less but couldn’t resist adding it to my basket anyway.
 

 
I am happy to report that I am not disappointed - the quality is just as good as the Revlon one. The crayon is the same size and the colour is just as pigmented and glossy. As I mentioned with the Revlon stick it moisturises lips and leaves a nice glossy finish. It provides just the right amount of matte and shine without being drying or sticky.
I am very happy with this product and I would recommend trying it instead of paying triple the price for a more expensive brand. It also comes free delivery – bonus!
Have you tried this lip crayon or any others? What brands would you recommend?
Holly xx

 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

M&S Beauty haul

After spotting the extremely generous offers and fabulous free gifts available on the M&S Beauty Site last week I couldn’t help treating myself. As I have previously mentioned; recently I seem to have become obsessed with skincare products and looking after my skin. The M&S site offers a wide selection of beauty and skincare products from around the world and I have been keen to try some from their popular brands such as Aptivita and Docteur Renaud.
 
 
 
Offer 1 is buy any 2 Aptivita products and receive a free Aptivita minis kit worth £23. The kit contains Apricot and Honey Face masks, Moisturiser and Cleanser.
Straight away I searched for the cheapest product which is the Clay Face mask at £3 – I opted for the Honey and Pink Clay flavours and added both to my basket. I was very tempted to buy the citrus and honey shampoo set as I adore honey beauty products – but decided to be good and resisted.

 
 
 

The next tempting offer is from Docteur Renaud where you will receive a free Skincare Starter Kit with any one Docteur Renaud purchase. I chose the Peach Hydrating Body milk 75ml £6.

 
 

In total I paid £12 and received £46 worth of products – bargain! I adore the M&S beauty site and could spend hours trawling through the pages and discovering new products and brands that I don't come across on the high street, however this can prove dangerous for my bank balance. I think instead I am going to keep myself busy by having a major pamper sesh and enjoy using my new products!
 
 
 
 
 

The offers are valid until tomorrow (11/09/13) so if you’re quick you can still take advantage and treat yourself!
Have you tried any of these products or any other brands from the M&S beauty range?
Holly xx
 


Sunday, 8 September 2013

Recent buys

Ok so my whole plan to ‘start saving money’ isn’t going too well. Sometimes it seems like the more I try to resist buying things the more I end up spending. Anyhow on Tuesday I indulged in a little retail therapy and felt very happy, then a little guilty afterwards, however I did find a few bargains that I am very pleased with!
I was pleasantly surprised by Primark - I usually don’t even bother going in there as the store in Northampton resembles more of a jumble sale than a shop - but I love the boots I picked up for £18 which look just like some I wanted from Topshop! Also loving the pair of grey skinny jeans from H&M. They look great with the boots, very grunge chic which is an AW trend I love.
Here’s some of what I bought…
 
 
 
Primark Jumper

H&M jeans

Primark tops x3

H&M tops x2

M&S flats

Primark Boots
And some beauty…
 

 
L'Oréal Paris Hair Expertise EverRiche Nourishing & Taming Shampoo
I have read countless reviews raving about this shampoo and after trying a sample of it myself I wanted the full size product. It’s no sulphate formula leaves hair super clean and soft and it also smells delicious! I am tempted to buy the conditioning treatment too, perhaps once I have used the other 6 pots I already have…
Garnier Body Ultimate Beauty Oil
After secretly stealing my mum’s bottle and then getting found out I had to go and buy my own! The oil absorbs in to skin straight away and is so moisturising and not greasy at all which is what I first expected. This is another product that I am in love with the smell of.
MUA Bronzing powder
I have almost ran out of the one I already have and at £1 a re-purchase was non-negotiable. I have been using this bronzer for a while and although it’s not the best bronzer I have ever used – for the budget price tag I am happy to continue using it! It gives a lovely tanned glow and comes in 3 shades, I use the lightest one.
NYC Extreme black felt liner
Another re purchase. I bought a MUA one previously which was awful compared to this one. It makes creating feline flicks really easy and the colour also lasts and doesn’t disappear during the day like some I have used. The price is around £4 which is a bargain in my opinion.
Nivea Rich Moisturising Day cream
I bought this to wear under my foundation as wanted SPF protection and this cream is SPF 15. I have only used it a couple of times but so far so good. The cream is light-weight, moisturising and costs around £4.
Olay Essentials BB cream SPF 15
I love Olay products, this is my first BB cream so yes I am a little behind on the BB craze but I finally caved and bought one! I wear this on days when I want a little coverage without applying a full face of make-up. The cream is moisturising and is tinted with Max factor foundation, it is also SPF 15 which is good as I want to protect my skin from the sun and it smells delicious too!
Aromatherapy Associates Renewing Rose Cleanser
I didn’t actually buy this, I found it lying around my house so decided to use it (finders keepers!) I am impressed though, I have never used a cleansing cream before but it removes the last traces of make-up after using a face wipe and the rose scent is lush! I love how smooth and cleansed my skin is after using this before bed.
So there we have it, my mini haul! Have you tried any of these products? What have you been buying?
Holly xx


Friday, 6 September 2013

Current feelings

 
 

I am currently taking a break for a couple of weeks before I start college mid-September. My last day at work was last Friday and I was so excited to spend the next couple of weeks chilling, taking time out for me, preparing myself for the next step in my life and literally doing nothing in general. I know it sounds sad but I was actually looking forward to things such as reading a new book, watching DVD’s and perhaps a box set or two, laying in and not having to set an alarm to wake up in the morning and just doing whatever the hell I want!

I shouldn’t complain but so far this week I have barely had time to sit down for a minute and be on my own! I have been so busy meeting friends, blogging, shopping, tidying, working out and I just can’t seem to stop. I’m feeling stressed and I don’t want to be feeling like this – I shouldn’t be! I should be feeling excited, greatful, happy… so many people would love to be in my position right now and I do appreciate the chance that I have been given but I think in a way I am over thinking and putting pressure on myself to do as much as I can in the days off that I have so that once my ‘break’ is over I don’t regret making the most of my time off.

Right now I feel like I just want to be on my own. My main problem is my mum. She is stressing me out so much, I need time away from that. I am a positive person, I always try to look on the bright side of things, see the best in people, get on with everybody and be happy. My mum is the complete opposite which is hard.

When I meet negative people I try to rise above the negativity and just get on with things – I don’t let others bring me down and I try to help that person see things in a better light and become more positive themselves – however when you live with someone who is so negative, so moody and un cooperative - and you have to spend a lot of time around them, walking on egg shells, it is unbelievably draining. After a while you grow tired of having to put up with it and frustrated at how much effort it takes to rise above the awkward atmospheres and negative vibes, it really stresses you out.

This is how I am feeling at the moment. I just can’t seem to escape it. I try so hard to get on with it and create a good mood in the house but when you are constantly making effort and getting nowhere it just makes you feel like giving up. It’s got to the point where I can’t even be alone with her because just being around her makes me feel feelings of stress and unhappiness – I can’t explain it because I don’t feel this way around anyone else. I have even snapped at my sister which I feel so bad for because she is like me best friend and we get on so well. All I know is I don’t want to feel like this so I try and distance myself from it as much as I can so that I can remain happy.

Luckily mum is due to go away for work a couple of days next week so hopefully this little break will be long enough for me to recover and take some time to build my positive levels back up! Haha. I’m sorry for this down hearted post – I don’t like to post things like this but it has literally gotten to the point where I need to write down how I feel just to get it out of my system.
 
 
 I keep reminding myself of this
 

On a happier note I have an eyebrow appointment this morning then I plan to have a wardrobe clear out once I’m home. I’m definitely in a clear-out kind of mood – I just want to get rid of all of the rubbish and un-necessary baggage in my life ready for a kind of fresh start! Tonight I am meeting up with some of my old work colleagues for Tapas and drinks which should be fun :-)


Happy Friday everyone!

Holly xx



Thursday, 5 September 2013

Nuxe Summer Travel kit

 
 
 
Recently I have become obsessed with skincare and trying to keep my skin as healthy as possible. I’m not sure why this sudden interest has come about – perhaps it’s the numerous beauty blogs and product reviews that I read on a daily basis? or maybe it’s due to the awful and unexpected breakout that I suffered a couple of weeks ago? One thing I do know is that it’s caused a dent in my bank balance! But it’s all in a good cause right..?
One of my favourite beauty websites is Feel Unique, I can literally spend hours trawling through pages of make-up and hair products, adding things to my wishlist – dangerous. I spotted this Nuxe travel kit which contains 5 products for under £10, of course it got added straight to the basket.
Nuxe is a brand that I have heard a lot about but have never tried for myself so I saw this as the perfect opportunity to sample without committing to buying the full size products.
 
 
 
 The kit includes;

Démaquillante Micellaire Micellar Cleansing Water which claims to remove make-up and eliminate impurities from your face, eyes and lips. I have used this a few times and it has left my skin clean and refreshed. I like to use it before bed and first thing in the morning. I am hoping that regular use will even my skin tone and give me a radiant glow! Watch this space…

Nuxellence Jeunesse which is described as a ‘second skin’ melting texture with a velvety feel. At first I was unsure how to use this but I believe it is a kind of serum that is applied instead of a moisturiser? It works in pretty much the same way and smells like flowers. I will probably save this for when I travel as it will take up less space than a moisturising cream.

 
 Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Usage Dry Oil contains plant oils and Vitamin E to nourish, repair and soften the face, body and hair. I am a huge fan of hair oils but have never used oil on my face. Like most people I assumed it would leave my skin greasy and cause a break out – but this oil absorbs quickly and does actually moisturise. I love the fact that it is a multi-tasking product that I can use on my hair and skin, I always use L’Oreal extraordinary oil on my hair but this can be quite heavy to travel with so the miniature Nuxe oil will be a perfect replacement.

Reve de Miel Creme Mains et Ongles Hand and Nail Cream claims to repair and relieve dry and damaged hands while protecting them from the visible signs of skin ageing. I suffer from really dry skin on my hands – especially in winter, so this mini cream will be perfect to carry in my handbag.

Body Gel Douche Fondant Shower Gel is formulated without soap and is designed especially for sensitive skin. It has a mousse-like texture which forms a great lather and a small amount goes a long way. It also has a lovely, fragrant scent - I will definitely be saving this for when I travel.

When I purchased this kit it was £9.99 but it has now been reduced to £7.92 in the sale! Have you tried any products from this brand? What skincare do you recommend?


Holly xx
 
 


Wednesday, 4 September 2013

5 reasons why you should try hot water & lemon

 
 
 
I love my huge cupcake mug!
 
 
I start each morning with a cup of hot water and lemon. It’s something I started ages ago that has now become as much a part of my morning routine as brushing my teeth.
I don’t drink it solely for the health benefits - I actually enjoy the taste and the refreshment it gives. Lemon is a natural anti-bacterial and is great for your skin and ridding the body of toxins as well as aiding digestion. It is alkaline which helps cleanse your liver and insides and gives skin a healthier appearance. Here’s 5 reasons why you should give it a try…

 
 
    It helps your immune system.
    Lemon is a natural anti-bacterial which is why it is a popular ingredient in cleaning products. When you include it in your diet the same cleaning qualities apply and due to its high vitamin C content it helps build up your immune system and fight off colds and illness. When you’re feeling poorly try adding honey to your hot water and lemon - this adds to the anti-bacterial quality and will soothe a sore throat and help you feel better in no time.  
      It makes your body more alkaline.
        Having a body with a more alkaline PH level is what we want as illness occurs when the PH level is more acidic. Alone lemons are acidic however once digested they become alkaline so when included in our diet regularly they help create an alkaline PH and prevent disease and reduce bacteria and inflammation.
          It promotes clear skin.
            Just like all other fruit lemons are good for us due to the vitamins and antioxidants they include. Lemons are very rich in vitamin C which is vital for renewing skin cells, repairing damage from everyday life such as the sun and free radicals and also clearing blemishes and age spots. At the end of the day you can buy all of the skin treatments and creams in the world but none will be as anti-aging or effective as natural beauty treatments such as a healthy, vitamin-rich diet!
              It aids digestion
                If you are on a detox or trying to lose weight the first place to start is with digestion and ridding the body of excess waste. By starting each day with hot water and lemon you will kick start your metabolism and your digestive system so that it is on track for the day ahead. Studies have found that lemons prevent bloating and indigestion and promote weight loss – people with a more alkaline PH level tend to lose weight more easily than those with an acidic one.  
                It energises and lifts your mood
                  I always find that I feel refreshed and more energetic after my hot water and lemon in the morning. The taste is refreshing and unlike caffeine rich drinks such as tea and coffee - which give you an energy boost and then cause your levels to crash mid-morning - hot water and lemon actually keeps you feeling energised and hydrated. Studies have also shown that the scent of lemon can actually enhance your mood and reduce depression and anxiety.
                   
                  Do you drink hot water and lemon? What other health tips do you have? Let me know!
                  Holly xx

                   

                  Sunday, 1 September 2013

                  August

                   
                   
                  Reading material, homemade pizza, skincare, visiting Salisbury cathedral, beach, tuna salad, new shoes, summer dress, MAC Crème cup.
                   
                  Another month has passed and autumn is fast approaching, eek! The weather is still warm reminding us that summer isn’t over just yet and we will hopefully experience one more heat wave before the year is through.
                  This month was my last month as a working girl (at my office job, not in the other sense!) and I have been counting down the days until I begin a new chapter as a college student before going on to University, exciting times!
                  Highlights of August have been visiting family in Dorset, going to One Love Reggae festival with my sister, visiting the Sea life centre and having a day out in Birmingham, enjoying a few meals and catching up with friends as well as practising my cooking at home.
                  Products I have been loving this month are my new Nuxe skincare travel set (review coming soon), MAC Crème cup lipstick and Organix Macadamia hair oil.
                  I am looking forward to chilling out and preparing myself over the next couple of weeks before I start college and then I am visiting a couple of Uni’s at the end of the month so I will have an idea which ones I want to apply to.
                  What have you been up to this month? Do you have any plans for September?
                  Holly xx

                  Follow me on Instagram @misshollyamber
                   

                  Tuna pasta salad, Primark earrings, me at the beach, enjoying milkshake, Ed’s diner burger, Nuxe skincare, hot water & lemon, MAC lipstick, yummy mandarin & rocket salad.


                   
                  Strawberry cocktail, shark, ready to celebrate, veggie percy pigs, Rachal & me, delicious beetroot salad, my speciality fajitas, cupcake, good things come to those who wait.