Wednesday 29 April 2015

Cleansing Milk Blind Trial - The Results Are in!

Back in March I took part in the Cleansing Milk Blind Trial along with 99 other beauty lovers. Seven cleansing milks were put into pots and labelled from A-G so we weren't influenced by brand names. Those taking part set to work testing them out (the fun part) and then all the results and our thoughts were recorded by a survey that we had to fill in.

The brands taking part (in no particular order) were -

La Roche-Posay

I had a few that I really liked, A & B were great and one that I LOVED and would buy without a shadow of a doubt - Sample G (good things come to those who wait!)

So I was itching to find out which one was my favourite, thankfully I didn't have too long to wait.

The results can be found here

My favourite, and it turns out, the overall winner, turned out to be La Roche -Posay Physiological Cleansing Milk - paraben free and suitable for dry to very dry sensitive skin.

Personally, I don't have dry skin but at the time I was taking part in the trial I was suffering from quite a patches of facial psoriasis. This meant that I had to avoid anything too harsh. This fitted the bill perfectly, skin felt clean and gorgeously soft and most importantly not irritated. A winner in my book.

Tuesday 28 April 2015

Vichy Ideal Soleil Velvety BB Cream & Body Oil SPF50

The sweet scent of Summer. I have to say I do love the scent of sunscreen - creams, lotions and even aftersun. Around this time of year I start looking at suncare and whilst I do have my definite faves I am always open to suggestion. I was sent the new range from Vichy - Ideal Soleil and am delighted to say I seem to have found another option!

The Ideal Soleil range includes body oils, body milks, 3 different face options and a post sun SOS repair balm.

I was sent the following to review

Ideal Soleil Body Oil SPF50 125ml £16.50 

Vichy say

Expert protection from UVA and UVB rays with a luxurious dry-touch, moisturising satin-finish oil texture and light, fresh floral fragrance.

My thoughts 

I am all in favour of high factor suncare so I was delighted with this factor 50 Body Oil. It has a light, floral scent but sums up Summer perfectly. Delicious, fresh scented skin and the dry touch oil provides a subtle gleam to the skin without feeling oily.

Ideal Soleil Velvety BB Cream SPF50+ 50ml £15.50 

Vichy say 

Designed for all skin types, this velvety tinted BB formula enhances and illuminates with Hyaluronic Acid that melts into the skin and plumps the skin with moisture for a beautiful finish.

My thoughts 

I think I have found my new Summer, no effort base. This BB Cream from Vichy is absolutely fantastic. It smells so good, the consistency is not too thick or too runny. The shade is neither too light or too dark for me. It blends beautifully and provides enough coverage for my skin (you may need a bit of extra concealer for problematic areas) and leaves skin with a gorgeous bright and radiant glow whilst looking really natural. I cannot fault it.

At just over £15 AND with SPF50 it is a great price too.

Below I am wearing it

Vichy is available from Boots stores and online. 

*PR samples

Monday 20 April 2015

5 Things To Do In Bruges

Bruges is one of those 'must see' places and having wanted to go for what seemed an age, we finally booked a short trip and took our 6yr old son with us too. He absolutely LOVED it, who couldn't resist plenty of chocolate, hot chocolate, ice cream, waffles (foodie heaven). He also loved looking around the city and declared the boat trip the best thing about the holiday...

Of course Belgium is renowned for Beer, Chocolates and Frites (chips) but there is so much more!

Here are five fab things I think you should do when in Bruges.

1. Take a Boat Ride and spend 30 minutes meandering the canals, taking in the sights and wonderful architecture of this great city. 

2. Eat waffles!

There are plenty of outlets but I really rate Chez Albert.  This is a tiny unassuming small kiosk/shop front with no seating but they make the most delicious fresh waffles. Eat one plain or indulge and choose from a multitude of toppings. I had strawberries and caramel sauce (pictured below) but I also had a waffle with Belgian chocolate sauce which was super tasty too.

3. Visit the 'Basilica of the Holy Blood' - 

This Basilica is a gothic architectural masterpiece and holds a phial that is said to contain a cloth with the blood of Jesus. Check times to visit as the phial is not on display at all times.

4. Visit a Tea Room and enjoy delicious coffees and sublime hot chocolate -

I highly recommend De Proeverie - The room is spacious and wonderfully decorated with nice little touches. I loved the roaring fireplace which made it cosy. We enjoyed coffee and hot chocolate, complete with cream and 3 mini chocolates from the chocolate shop across the road. The liquid hot chocolate that you add to warm milk is also from the same chocolate shop. A highlight of our visit to Bruges.

5.  Visit The Belfry Of Bruges 

Featured heavily in the film 'In Bruges', The Belfry (Bell Tower) is situated in the Market Square and is a prominent symbol of Bruges. The medieval Bell Tower has 366 narrow and steep steps that you can (for a fee) climb to the top of and take in the sights of Bruges or perhaps re-enact the film....

Be charmed by the cobbled streets and gentle pace of life and when in Bruges, don't forget to look up!

Bettina x

Linwoods Milled Flaxseed, Cocoa & Berries Review

When I was introduced to Linwoods Milled products I was rather taken by the Flax, Sunflower, Pumpkin & Sesame Seeds & Goji Berries,  many months on I am still purchasing and eating it daily with my morning porridge. I was keen to try another one of their products so I picked up the milled Flaxseed, Cocoa & Berries version from Holland & Barrett.

Linwoods say 

Have you had 25 fruit & veg today? Now you have! This blend of milled flaxseed, cocoa and berries really is a SUPER food product that packs a punch, with the same antioxidant value as 25 fruit and vegetables in just 30g! Plus you get iron, zinc, magnesium, calcium & Vitamin B1.

My thoughts 

I add a couple of teaspoons to plain yoghurt and blueberries for a pretty healthy afternoon snack. It helps beat afternoon slump and tastes absolutely delicious and is happily nutritious.
Have you tried any of the Linwoods range?

Color Club Barely There Nail Polish - Nails Of The Day

Color Club's 'Barely There' Nail Lacquer was included in this month's Iconic Hollywood Edition Glossybox. I am a huge fan of nude nail polishes so I couldn't wait to apply this to my nails.

I think the description of 'barely there' is pretty much on the button, it is a gorgeous mannequin nails shade and perfect for no fuss, glossy nails.

I needed to apply 3 coats to achieve this look. I have to say I did find application quite tricky as the brush/lid design is quite long.  Also the product runs down from the top of the lid towards the brush causing drip so you have to be careful about that too.

Color Club 'Barely There' Nail Lacquer costs £4.10 

Friday 17 April 2015

Glossybox Iconic Hollywood Edition Review

Oh Glossybox how I adore thee this month.. well the box is just gorgeous isn't it? Mine has a lemon bottom and a white top with an image of Marilyn Monroe - A hollywood legend and icon. I am a huge fan of the lovely Marilyn so I was delighted to receive this box.

As you can see the theme for this month's box is the 'Iconic Hollywood Edition' and contains all you need to inject some Hollywood glamour to your skincare and makeup.

So what's inside?


Darphin - Exquisage Beauty Revealing Cream 5ml (full size £65 for 50ml) 

This promises to enhance firmness and boosting skin's luminosity for a red carpet glow, I will let you know how I get on...

A pampering session before a night out is a must and so included in this box is

Nougat London Soothing Bath Pearls in Cherry Blossom £6 

This has a delicate fragrance and will leave a subtle shimmer on the skin to create a limb lengthening sheen. Watch this space for a review.


Color Club Nail Polish in shade Barely There - £4.10 

Nude nails are a perennial Hollywood favourite and I must say one of mine too.. a nails of the day wearing this nude shade will be popping up on my instagram shortly.

Red lips and a feline flick are forever synonymous with Hollywood Glamour and so they both feature in this special edition box... I will be attempting to recreate a Hollywood look very soon so keep your eyes peeled.

Lord & Berry Lipstick Pencil in Kiss £10 

I am a big fan of Lord & Berry products so am looking forward to trying this pencil version of a red lipstick.

POP Beauty Kajal Eyeliner Pen in Sooty Black £6.50 

I like the look of this eyeliner pen, it looks really easy to use and features a smudger at the other end for a smoky effect.

Great theme & great box this month from Glossybox 

Glossybox Iconic Hollywood Edition is available now and costs £10 + postage. 

*PR Sample

Twinings Nutty Chocolate Flavour Assam Review

Browsing the tea aisle my eyes were drawn to this new tea from Twinings - part of their Loose Leaf Pyramid range - Nutty Chocolate Flavour Assam. Well I found it too hard to resist and it found its way into my shopping basket...

Twinings say 

A sweet chocolatey and creamy hazelnut taste, like a praline truffle.

Ingredients - Black Tea, Cocoa Nibs (20%), Hazelnut Flavouring (8%)

My thoughts 

Now I was rather excited about the prospect of a chocolatey tea so broke open the packet as soon as I got home, followed the instructions and drank my tea black. Personally I didn't find it sweet at all, even a touch bitter. For me the flavour that stood out was the one of hazelnuts with a subtle flavour of chocolate. All that was missing was some caramel and you would have had a delicious toffifee in a tea! Now there's an idea...

Perfect as a treat in the afternoon, I think this is best drunk with a splash of milk. 

Twinings Nutty Chocolate Flavour Assam Loose Leaf Pyramid (12 pyramids) costs £3.49

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water Review

Garnier say 

So easy. So effective. so gentle.
So no excuse not to take your make-up off.

Like a magnet, the cleansing agents capture and lift away dirt from the skin.
No need to rub to remove impurities and make-up.

The Result: Perfectly cleansed and refreshed skin without rubbing or rinsing.
Use in the morning to refresh skin. Use at night to remove make-up, cleanse and soothe.

Micellar Cleansing Water comes in a generous 400ml format for up to 200 uses*.
*Based on 2ml per cotton pad.

My thoughts 

I bought this all in one cleanser to take away with me on my recent trip to Bruges. I was looking for no fuss cleansing and makeup remover in one and rather than a few bottles I had just this one and some cotton pads.

This micellar water has no scent so it is very much like using a water. There is no doubt that it is an effective cleanser but I did need a couple of pads to remove all my makeup (including waterproof mascara).

However, I did find that my skin didn't feel particularly soothed it seemed to tingle slightly and seemed to leave my skin feeling drier than usual. For this reason I wouldn't use it for my morning cleanse and probably will just use this product to remove my eye makeup in the evenings.

I am unlikely to repurchase this product.

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water 400ml costs £4.99

Thursday 16 April 2015

Bluebird Tea Candyfloss & Rhubarb & Custard Teas Reviewed

As a bit of a tea fiend I love seeking out new and different flavours and my interest was piqued by these delicious sounding teas from Bluebird Tea - Rhubarb & Custard and Candyfloss no less!

Bluebird say 

"Our passion comes from creating your perfect cup of loose leaf tea! We love to mix up unique and exciting tea blends in flavours that have never been seen before to make people smile!"

As these are loose leaf tea I got out my infuser and popped in the loose leaves... I then sat back and enjoyed... 

First up is Rhubarb & Custard 

Bluebird Tea says 

Tangy rhubarb + creamy custard guilt free sweet treat. 

Our Rhubarb and Custard Tea really is a pairing made in heaven. This naturally caffeine free, antioxidant rich rooibos tea blend will satisfy your sweet tooth with less than 1 calorie p/cup!

My thoughts 

I have to say out of the two this was my fave. This took me right back to my teenage years when I would be on a small hoppa bus and the driver would stop the bus, pop to a tiny village shop and buy a bag of rhubarb and custard sweets and offer them round to the passengers, those were the days! 

The tea smells EXACTLY like the much loved traditional sweets. It has a perfect delicate taste that manages to capture tangy rhubarb and creamy custard completely. This was dreamy to drink and suitable any time of day. Nice one Bluebird Tea Co Mixologists!


Bluebird Tea say 

Join us at the fair with this sweet + scrumptious Candy Floss white tea.

My thoughts 

Now I would think that it is quite hard to capture the taste of candyfloss in a tea unless it was just a bundle of sugar... so I was happy to discover this tasty white tea concoction blended with flowers, fruit and sweetener. The result is a lightly flavoured sweet and fruity drink that is ideal for an afternoon pick-me-up. 

I am looking forward to trying some of the other fabulous sounding tea concoctions from Bluebird Tea Co... 

If you want to find out more about this Independent Tea Mixology company and see the complete range visit Bluebird Tea Co

*PR Samples

Wednesday 1 April 2015

Max Factor Colour Elixir Simply Nude Lipstick - The Perfect Nude Lipstick

I have raved about the Max Factor Colour Elixir Lipsticks before so when I was told there was a new addition to the range in the form of 'Simply Nude' - a hint of pink nude lipstick, knowing how much I love a decent nude lippie, I had to give it a go!

Max Factor say -

High pigmented colour delivers just the right amount of pink to the lip, combined with the added conditioning benefit of shea, avocado and aloe butters, lips are moisturised for smoother application and soft subtle sheen.

Swatch of Max Factor Colour Elixir Simply Nude Lipstick 

My thoughts -

Simply Nude has become my handbag staple as it is really is the perfect, easy to apply (without a mirror) nude shade. The shade is a beautiful nude shade with, as Max Factor say, absolutely just the right touch of pink which lifts the lips and brightens the complexion to bring them to life. The formula is fantastic -creamy, conditioning and moisturising and the lipstick glides across the lips imparting even colour and leaving the lips looking super soft and lush.

This is a hugely flattering nude lipstick for my skintone and I have tried it on my sister who has a slightly different tone to me and it was equally nice on her too. I would imagine this to be a barely there beautiful nude to suit many skintones. Ideal to pair with a smokey eye, this is also my go to for every day. 

As you can tell I am smitten with this 'my lips but better' lippie. 

Here I am wearing it - 

Max Factor Colour Elixir Lipstick in Simply Nude is available now from Boots costing just £7.99. 

*PR Sample


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