Friday 31 May 2013

New Hair With Fabulous Hair Company

At home

In the Salon

I made a trip yesterday to Fabulous Hair Company  to have my tresses cut, restyled and highlighted. It was long overdue and I came out, as always, feeling like a new woman.

This time I had half a head of highlights using Paul Mitchell Colour XG - colour that protects the hair and   increases the shine. Under the lights my hair was insanely shiny. With the haircut I had all the dead ends removed and layers put through the front to make it looks so much healthier. I am very pleased with the results and the fact that I kept quite a bit of the length.

My hair was washed with Paul Mitchell's Forever Blonde Shampoo and styled with the Super Skinny range and Gloss Drops. They smell so good!

Kiri and his wonderful team made me feel very welcome and cared for. More importantly Kiri always listens to what I am aiming for, listens and where appropriate makes his own suggestions too. I do think he does THE BEST hair cuts. Such a great Salon.

Fabulous Hair Company is based in Palmers Green, North London.

Click here for more details -

Beauty Festival Favourites - Taking You From Day To Night

June's Issue of In Mag Essex is out now and coincidentally is the 100th Issue!

This month's beauty page is taking a look at travelling light and multi-tasking make-up to wear to festivals, Polo Days and more. Let your beauty take you from day to night :-)

Click below to take a look

Wednesday 29 May 2013

PIXI Lid Last Shadow Pens in Gilded Mink and Graphite Glint

Eye Shadow sticks are a huge trend this year - all the brands seem to be offering them in various guises and I can see why they are popular. They are non messy, easy to apply and give long lasting, crease free colour all day - at least these ones are from PIXI.

I am very tempted now to try more!

Lid Last Shadow Pens in Gilded Mink & Graphite Glint

These are soft and creamy to apply. The Gilded Mink shade makes my eye lids look so smooth and it is such a wearable day to night shade. The Graphite Glint is brilliant at creating a gorgeous easy smokey eye and works well as a liner too. No brushes needed, no fall out, no mess, no fuss. Perfect

Swatches of Graphite Glint & Gilded Mink

PIXI Lid Last Shadow Pens cost £12 

*PR Samples

Tuesday 28 May 2013

Elvis Jesus For Him And For Her Fragrances

These are the debut His and Her fragrances from the clothing brand Elvis Jesus.

Elvis Jesus For Her is presented in a heavy weight clear glass flacon adorned with the Brand’s iconic logo in rose coloured gold while For Him stands defiantly in a weather beaten clear glass flask branded with Elvis Jesus’ pewter coloured emblem.

Both fragrances lay hidden in their unique outer ‘book’ packaging – a nod to the origin of the Brand’s namesake. For Her is bound in smooth black with gold, whilst For Him lays in distressed brown with aged pewter, their script documenting the Brand’s history.

Elvis Jesus For Her EDT 50ml £39

A fragrance of contrasts, Elvis Jesus For Her opens with a fresh burst of uplifting Grapefruit, Cherry, Bergamot, Elemi and Peppermint blended with the woody backdrop of Nutmeg that develops into an innately feminine heart of Rose, Jasmine, Muguet and Cinnamon - evocative of a glamorous bygone era. The dry down envelops with a sensuous woody blend of Cedar, Courmarin, Amber, Vanilla, Tonka Bean and Leather. A Woody Floral scent that lingers to give an indelible impression.

Top notes - Grapefruit, Cherry, Bergamot, Elemi and Peppermint
Heart notes - Rose, Jasmine, Muguet and Cinnamon
Base notes - Cedar, Courmarin, Amber, Vanilla, Tonka Bean and Leather

My thoughts 

First of all I adore the packaging and bottles, so different. A perfect fit for the brand ethos.

This scent is really unusual and away from the norm of either fruity or floral fragrances. On my skin I detect the slight sweetness of the fruits but I struggle to detect any of the floral notes in the scent. I do however absolutely love the vanilla and tonka beans which on my skin are really prominent amongst the woody base notes and the warmth of the Cinnamon. 

Personally I feel this could appeal to either of the sexes.

Elvis Jesus For Him EDT 50ml £39

A masculine Earthy Citrus scent that opens with an explosion of Grapefruit, Orange and spicy Pink Pepper 
that prelude an earthy heart of Black Pepper, Patchouli and Geranium. The lingering masculine
notes of Cedar, Vetivert and sensual Woods leave a long lasting, seductive impact.

Top notes - Grapefruit, Orange and Pink Pepper
Heart notes - Black Pepper, Patchouli and Geranium
Base notes - Cedar, Vetivert and Woods

My thoughts

At first spray I wasn't sure about this at all as the citrus notes were quite stark but as it settled down I was  rewarded with a spicy and peppery scent with a backdrop of wood notes as it dried down. A definite masculine fragrance that improves as the day goes on. A rather appealing scent which is a bit different from what is already out there. Smells wonderful on my husband's skin.

Available Now To Buy Exclusively From Elvis Jesus, The Fragrance Shop and selected Elvis Jesus clothing retailers. 
*PR Samples

Monday 27 May 2013

Nivea In-Shower Body Moisturiser Review

What is this ? 

A body moisturiser that you apply in the shower and then rinse off, just like you would a hair conditioner.

The people at NIVEA Body say that this product is so obvious it is a wonder that no one has thought of this before! I must admit it hadn't actually occurred to me that this may be a product that I may need but is rather a clever solution to a question I hadn't asked.

How Does It Work 

NIVEA In-Shower Body Moisturiser is easy to use and works in four simple steps:

1. Cleanse with normal shower product and rinse off 
2. Apply NIVEA In-Shower Body Moisturiser while still in the shower 
3. Rinse off 
4. Dry yourself, get dressed and go!

Makes body moisturising so easy and convenient. It leaves a nourishing layer of moisture on the skin and skin feels soft all day. No waiting for the product to sink in and no greasy feeling or film, meaning you can get   dressed straight away.

My thoughts 

In the past I have said that I do find moisturising my body a chore, it does get easier when I really like a moisturiser but it is perhaps easy to skip this step when short of time. Having normal skin and a really good shower gel it is an area I could happily not bother with although I sometimes feel guilty that I should be doing it ...however I was curious by the In-Shower Body Moisturiser.

I was sent the dry skin version which is enricheched with Almond Oil. The other version comes in a white bottle and is for normal skin and contains caring Sea Minerals.

It has a similar consistency to a hair conditioner, it was white opaque in colour and smelt pleasant but not overpowering. I followed the instructions, I just applied and rinsed off.

My skin felt incredibly silky and soft, much nicer than when I don't bother to moisturise. This feeling lasted all day. I was suitably impressed. I would be interested to see how the In-Shower Body Moisturiser for nomal skin compares.

My only negative thought was the bottle design - it may be because I have small hands but having product in one hand and trying to close the lid with the other hand whilst the bottle slipped about in my hands was really difficult! As the lid is at the bottom more product was coming out whilst I was attempting to close it. 

NIVEA In-Shower Body Moisturiser 250ml bottle costs £3.56

*PR Sample

Sunday 26 May 2013

Win With APIVITA - Face Masks & Face Scrubs Giveaway! *CLOSED*


I have got together with the lovely people at APIVITA the natural Greek Brand that has arrived in the UK recently. For this fantastic giveaway for readers of, I have 3 FULL sets of the new range of express masks and scrubs that have just been launched in the UK via selected M&S Beauty Stores. 

I have been using the express mask with grape and will be posting a review shortly.

The prize - 7 x 40ml tubes of masks and scrubs - I have 3 to give away.

Face Scrub with apricot - 89% natural ingredients

Main Action:
Gently exfoliates the skin, removing dead skin cells and impurities

Face Mask with green clay - 89% natural ingredients
Main Action:
Deeply cleanses the skin, removes excess sebum and closes the pores

Face Scrub with olive seeds - 89% natural ingredients 
Main Action :
Deeply cleanses and exfoliates the skin, removing dead cells and impurities

Face Mask with pomegranate - 89% natural ingredients

Main Action:
Rejuvenates and offers radiance to the skin

Face Mask with grape - 94% natural ingredients

Main Action:
Reduces wrinkles and expression lines

Face Mask with royal jelly - 97% natural ingredients 
Main Action:
Enhances skin’s firmness and helps cell regeneration

Face Mask with aloe- 95% natural ingredients 

Main Action:
Intensively hydrates the skin

How to enter 

  • You must be a follower of this blog - Please leave a comment stating how you are following the blog
  • You can gain an extra entry by tweeting about this giveaway. Just tag your tweet with @BeautySwot at the end so I can see it. 

The (not so) Small Print -
  • Maximum entries per person is 2
  • Open only to UK residents
  • All entries will be logged and numbered, and the winners will be selected by
  • Entries close at 23.59pm, 2nd June 2013 
  • Winners and instructions as to how to claim your prize will appear on the blog on Monday 3rd June. You will have 48 hours to get in touch before I select a new winner.

 Thanks for entering and good luck!

Clinique A Different Nail Enamel in Pinkini - Nails Of The Day

Nails of The Day are from Clinique's brand new nail range - A Different Nail Enamel. This is Pinkini from the limited edition Summer collection.

A gorgeous and glossy candy pink shade - 2 coats to achieve opacity, it has a lovely formula that applies so smoothly.

Friday 24 May 2013

Nuxe Reve de Miel Hand and Nail Cream

The hand cream obsessive is back (aka me!) and this time it is with this gorgeous, gorgeous hand cream from French brand Nuxe. Perhaps best known for their iconic Huile Prodigieuse multi-purpose dry oil, this natural brand, as I have recently discovered has quite a few gems in their skincare range and I cannot wait to get to know the brand better.

Rêve de Miel Hand and Nail Cream

Nuxe say

This hand cream nourishes, soothes and repairs the hands (Sunflower Oil, Rose Muscat and Sweet Almond Oil, Barley Extract, Argan Oil, Shea Butter, Acacia Honey). Hands are protected against external aggression (Vitamin E).

My thoughts

This is a reasonably thick and rich hand cream that smells utterly delectable. I absolutely love the sweet honey scent and it just feels like it is doing good things for the hands. It leaves hands looking smooth and feeling soft and silky for hours. Really, really nice.

Rêve de Miel Hand and Nail Cream 75ml costs £10

*PR Sample

Thursday 23 May 2013

Paul & Joe Smoothing Base 001 Make Up Base - Review

I have mentioned previously that I have been using primers to smooth my pores and give that overall 'flawless finish' and when I find a really good one I just have to share it. I absolutely love this one from Paul & Joe which is from their limited edition Summer 'Beach Baby Collection'. Let's hope that it is NOT ltd edit!

Paul & Joe Beaute Smoothing Base Make Up Base in 001 

Paul & Joe say

Smoothing Base is a foundation primer with a pore minimizing formula that instantly erases discolouration and dark spots. Contains Apricot, Jojoba oils and  White Lily Extract supplying skin with hydration. The result is smooth, even toned skin. Oil-free finish.

This picture isn't blurred, this is the effect of the primer on the skin. You can see the difference from where I haven't applied it on my wrist.

My thoughts

Cute packaging with an apricot coloured lid, this small cream coloured tube contains an excellent foundation primer. It smells wonderful but is delicately scented. It is silicone based so it has that texture but it doesn't feel like it sits on the skin like some can do, it feels moisturising and leaves skin soft and silky.

Just as its name suggests it smooths everything in its path, my pores are filled in and the look of my skin is blurred. Foundation glides on evenly and you are truly left with smooth, flawless skin. What impressed me the most is that make up doesn't move, the product doesn't sink in (like some can do and you feel like you need to top up) but the flawless look achieved really lasts and there is no shine appearing as the day goes on either.

Perfect. Highly recommended.

Paul & Joe Smoothing Base 20ml costs £26 

Collection available now from Harrods, Fenwick (New Bond Street), Selfridges and and from the 1st June from

*PR Sample

Wednesday 22 May 2013

Elemis Pro-Radiance Illuminating Balm - Review

Elemis say 

Exude health and vitality with this energising skin radiance balm that instantly brightens and tightens for a smooth, even and dewy luminosity.

Formulated with a powerful vitamin complex that protects against moisture loss whilst exquisite purple orchid, noni and acai help defend against the early signs of ageing.

My thoughts 

This was a strange one for me as I didn't really think that the Illuminating Flash Balm did much at all, nothing that I could detect at first. I wore it around the house on various days and kept looking but couldn't see a difference ...

However, 3 people commented on my radiance when I was wearing this that I felt I couldn't actually ignore this product. I also think that the sunlight enhances the effect.

My husband had no idea I was wearing it and whilst sat in traffic mentioned that my face looked more glowy than usual.

When I saw my mum she mentioned that my skin looked lovely and radiant.

A mum at school pick up said that I looked glowy and radiant and asked me if I was using anything different.

So back to the product - It is slightly creamy in texture and has a soapy citrus scent, it absorbs instantly.

I tried using it as my main moisturiser but it just wasn't moisturising enough for me, it worked much better used as a primer over my moisturiser and under my base. It smoothed and blurred lines but I didn't feel any tightening effect, it felt nice on the skin.

It is not at all greasy, but you won't want to apply too much as you can end up looking oily rather than radiant.

For a blast of instant radiance I think this is great.

Elemis Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 50ml costs £32.00

*PR Sample

Nails Of The Day - OPI A Roll In The Hague

Today's nails are OPI's A Roll in the Hague from the 2012 Holland Collection *

This looks like a really bright orange shade in the bottle but on the nails comes out as a gorgeous orange with red undertones. I think this also makes an ideal pedi colour and on a dull day like today is the perfect Summer pick-me-up.

*Worn by my fabulous lil sister

Tuesday 21 May 2013

Beach Baby Collection - Paul & Joe Beaute Summer 2013

Paul & Joe Beaute is not a make up brand that I have tried until now, I think one of the reasons is it hasn't been in the shops that I regularly go to and although a few bits have caught my eye over the years I have been reluctant to buy online before trying. However I recently spent an evening playing with the new Summer Collection and I saw for myself why people are seduced with this brand.

Adorable packaging and gorgeous colours for Summer inspired by holiday destinations and 60's beach film nostalgia that just scream sun, sea and sand. Lots of fun to be had, at the same time the products are practical and multitasking.

The Beach Baby Collection

The range comprises of Nail Enamels £12 

My favourites are  -




Eyeliner & Eye Crayon Duo £22 

There are 5 in the collection but my stand out and one which would really suit my green eyes is

Cypress - an olive green and gold combo, stunning when the light hits it.

Eye and Lip Gloss Duo £28

The idea of these is fab - silky smooth eye shadow one end and a pretty lip gloss with a pop of colour on the other - It was no surprise to me that I was drawn to the Hawaiin inspired

Maui  - Shimmery gold eye shadow and orange/nectarine gloss shade

Also in the collection are the famous Blotting Papers £3.50 with a dolphin print, Pressed Powder with UV SPF 20 £28 - a translucent compact powder available in two shades and Smoothing Base £26 ( look out for my review of the Smoothing Base, coming soon!)

Collection available now from Harrods, Fenwick (New Bond Street), Selfridges and and from the 1st June from

Monday 20 May 2013

Kiko Sun Bronzing Blush in 101 Crystal Rose

Another gorgeous item from the Kiko Make Up Milano Limited Edition Fierce Spirit Collection. This time it is the Sun Bronzing Blush.

Coming in 4 shades I was sent 101 Crystal Rose 

Kiko say

Blush that combines three shades in a single product for a custom made look. Use the three shades separately or mix them up to sculpt your face and outline facial features with a radiant finish. Silky touch and long-lasting performance. Hypoallergenic formula and paraben free.

Swatches of all 3 shades 



My thoughts 

This is such a pretty blush. It is cased in a sturdy gold compact and comes complete with a mirror. The three shades can be used alone or blended making it a great versatile, mulit-functional product. The brown is a warm matte brown and good as a bronzer and also for contouring. The main blush shade is a delightful raspberry colour and the highlighting shade is a frosted pale pink.

Texture wise this is soft and creamy and blends beautifully on the skin.

I cannot fault this blush at all. I think it is great value.

Kiko Sun Blushing Bronze in 101 Crystal Rose costs £13.90 and is available online from Kiko or from Kiko stores.

*PR Sample

Friday 17 May 2013

Nails Of The Day - Orly Pure Porcelain

Pure Porcelain - A slightly off white with a hint of pink.

How Could I Forget - The Friday Column

How Could I Forget - A Poem

I remember the day you looked my way
Instantly smitten I returned your gaze
Attracted by your smile, your dark floppy hair
Staring into those dreamy blue eyes
I longed to be whisked away 

Hardly believing my luck you felt the same
We enjoyed trips to the cinema, lunch in the park
Ice skating at Ally Pally, staring at the stars
My long blonde hair blowing in the wind, I sang
You played guitar, we dreamt of fame

Days turned into months, months into years
Teenagers graduating into young adults
University, jobs and a love that was envied
One day you looked at her that very same way
And all I was left with were my tears

Thirty years have passed and yet where do I start
I have never forgotten you, the memories remain raw
Your scent still familiar as if it were yesterday
Flashback of images often appear 
How could I forget, you broke my heart

An original work of fiction - all rights reserved

Sisley Phyto-Blush Eclat in Mango

I love blusher it has to be said, when out shopping I am always pulled towards the blushers so when I attended an afternoon with Sisley to learn all about how to create the perfect red lip look, it was no surprise that my attention was drawn to the range of Phyto-Blushes.

Funky zebra outer packaging and a mirror the size of the length of the casing, two tones of blush and a handy brush included.. I fell in love.

Although it is available in 5 shades I chose to review the Phyto-Blush Eclat in Mango shade.

The Sisley Cosmetic brand prides itself on using natural plant extracts in their beauty products, the idea being that they have skincare benefits when used as well as being beautiful products.

Sisley say 

Radiance revealed, in a single sweep. Its high-tech texture reveals and beautifies the complexion while leaving the skin soft and comfortable.

Ultra-fine, unctuous and silky, for a light, astonishing translucent and long lasting make-up result.

Multiple make-up effects thanks to the Phyto-Blush Eclat duos, which adapt to all skin tones and looks, from the most natural to the most sophisticated.

An original compact design: a feminine, elegant and modern accessory.

The soft focus effect minimizes surface imperfections and fine lines. The skin looks smoothed. The light powder finish can be modulated to the desired intensity. 

Active Ingredients:

Woodmallow extract: moisturizes and softens
Linden extract: softens, soothes
Corn: nourishes, increases hydration
Gardenia extract: softens, moisturizes
Ginkgo biloba extract: boosts surface microcirculation, fights free radicals 
Rosehip extract: tones

My thoughts 

I am going to have to do a face of the day wearing the blush as I had a really hard time trying to capture the blush blended to do it justice. Above are the two shades separately, the creamy peach colour is just about visible on my skin.

Super soft and silky smooth powder texture with buildable colour. There are two shades - a lighter creamy colour (like the fleshy inside of a Mango) and a darker pinky/peachy colour (like the outer skin of a Mango)

This is a really beautiful and subtle peachy blush that when blended gives a pretty hint of colour but is so fine and natural in appearance that it just looks like you have a wonderful luminous and radiant glow. It looks great when paired with corals and peaches but equally is perfect teamed with red lipstick.

Gorgeous packaging, gorgeous blush. I highly recommend.

Sisley Phyto-Blush Eclat costs £48.50

*PR Sample

Tuesday 14 May 2013

New CID I-Prime Foundation Primer - Review

I am not sure if it is an age thing but I never used primers until a few years ago and now I mostly prefer wearing them.. I suspect I like the way they fill the pores in (the pores are more noticeable as I am getting older..unfortunately) to give a lovely smooth appearance to my skin before applying my foundation.

New CID i-prime Foundation Primer is one of my favourites for smoothing the skin, leaving it silky soft and is a fantastic prep base for my foundation.

New CID claims 

i - prime helps to blur imperfections, giving the skin a smoother and more radiant appearance. i - prime contains ATP (andenison tri-peptide) a skin care ingredient that helps to strengthen the skin's barrier function and also adds the bounce and radiance back to the skin that we lose as we age.

This lightweight serum gives a gorgeous, smooth texture and appearance to the skin. It allows foundation to glide on easily and create a a long lasting flawless finish.

My thoughts 

I like the smart packaging and the pump action bottle. 2 pumps provides enough product to use. The actual product is a lightweight gel/cream texture which I absolutely love and feels lovely applied to the skin. If you don't like the strong silicon textures and feel of other primers I think you will love this.

I-prime does exactly what it sets out to to do - smooths and preps skin and does a good job of keeping foundation in place. It smells good too!

New CID i-prime Foundation Primer costs £28 for 30ml

*PR Sample

Monday 13 May 2013

KIKO Make Up Milano Fierce Spirit Colour Shock Eyeshadow Swatches

Gorgeous cream eye shadows from Kiko Cosmetics, these are part of the Limited Edition Fierce Spirit Collection (more posts coming soon).

Colour Shock Longlasting Eyeshadow is available in 8 shades. I have two here - Decisive Stone and Fresh Mojito.

They can be used as an all over shadow or as an eye liner and they are waterproof.

I can testify to their lasting power, these do not budge. It took a lot of goes and plenty of remover! Texture wise they are buttery soft and very smooth to apply. Did I mention they are rather stunning and vibrant?


Kiko Fierce Spirit Colour Shock Long Lasting Eyeshadow cost £6.90 

*PR Samples


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