Thursday, 28 February 2013

WishyWashy Peppermint Patties Soap

This is another of items I was kindly sent by Alex from WishyWashy - you can see this post here.  As I have said in previous reviews this brand never uses sodium lauryl sulphate or parabens in their products and of course they are cruelty free.

You get a generous 100g of the Peppermint Patties soap for £2.50 and it's lasting ages.  The soap lathers just as well as any SLS containing one and it also has little exfoliating pieces in it which are nice and gentle for a mild scrub.

I love minty smelling soaps like the North Pole one from Lush which I got at Christmastime, this is a cheap, all year round alternative!

WishyWashy have given their website a makeover and have loads of new items available too so I recommend having a wee look and help support a small business!


Wednesday, 27 February 2013

EU Ban on Animal Testing

I mentioned this in one of my recent posts so I thought I'd go into it in a bit more detail seeing as this is a major breakthrough and fits in with my blog!

This new law states that as of 11th March 2013 any products sold in the EU must not be tested on animals - finished products or ingredients.  Now, it is a bit confusing as there are loopholes and obviously the whole issue with China, but I came across a great post by Beauty Without The Beasts which is very informative and goes into all these details.

Click here to read the post!


Monday, 25 February 2013

Long Hair Up Class Part 1

If you follow me on Twitter you'll probably know that I've been attending an evening long hair up class at a local college.  It's on Wednesday nights 6.30-8.30pm for 6 weeks.  I am now halfway through so I thought I'd share what we've learned so far!  Ideally I would like to do tutorials for these styles but some are pretty complicated to translate via blog post so I'll just need to have a go and see how they turn out...

Week 1

Although this was the first style we did I found this the trickiest so far! You use the same piece of hair on the left and right of each level so it needs to be quite long. It uses a repetitive figure of eight motion for the main body but it is easily adaptable to whatever look you're going for. For example you could make a bow at the to and then go onto the middle section; built it outwards to give it more dimensions; or create a different shape with the hair.

Week 2

This one probably isn't to everyone's taste as it slightly reminds me of Medusa haha!!   However I think it could be adapted to look really nice, for example adding some little flowers, pearls or gems to follow the shape of the hair.  Also instead of twisting the hair you could make fishtail plaits.  The tutor showed us how she used this effect on a bride recently, she used padding to make the bottom bigger and sit in the nape of the neck, and the top was more 'drapey' rather than twisted - it was lovely!

Week 3
creepy me in the background!
This was what we did last week - my favourite so far, and to be honest, the easiest too!  It is quite simple but very time consuming, I wasn't happy with how I finished it as I had to rush as class was finishing!  I can definitely do a tutorial for this one as it's pretty straight forward, with lots of repetition.  She only showed us how to do the shape at the bottom, and left the front bit for us to come up with something ourselves so it was really interesting to see how everyone's turned out very different!

I'm looking forward to this weeks' which she showed us last week, an asymmetric plait which she finished in about 5/6 minutes!!  I will put up the rest of the styles at the end of the course although follow me on Instagram (LooweezBx) for photos every week :)


Friday, 22 February 2013

Nail Varnish Challenge #2

I didn't actually mean to pick another Avon nail varnish as my second one for the challenge but hey ho here it is!  Apologies for the rubbishy photos, if you read one of my previous posts you'll know that my memory card met a sad end!  Although the close up photos are actually better than what my camera can do to be honest, well done iPhone!

This nail varnish is Dynamo from Avon (not CF), again I've had this one for years - I think I got it when I was at school which was a good four years ago (TERRIFYING!).  It is a metallic purple with silver shimmer through it.  Dynamo did apply quite nicely but it doesn't really excite me.  I'm not a massive fan of pink/purple nail varnishes for some reason so this will be going in the 'to sell/get rid of' pile!


Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Books to Read

1. Life of Pi I had sort of wanted to read this for a while then as the film came out I decided I'd do it soon, definitely before seeing the film!  I got this for my Kindle off Amazon for 20p!

2. Divergent I've heard good things about this series, it's one of those 'if you liked The Hunger Games then you'll love this!' so it's worth a go.  Currently on my Amazon wishlist.

3. Killing Floor I hadn't heard of the Jack Reacher series until my friend mentioned it and said they are amazing.  We were off college for a week and she read FIVE!  As far as I can tell this is the first installment but there's also one actually called Jack Reacher... hmm.

4. The Fault In Our Stars Well of course I need to read this to find out what all the fuss is about!  It went down to about £4 on Amazon so I bought it before it went back up!

5. The Woman in Black I loved the film, and I went to see the play when it came to Glasgow and it was so good.  It was only two guys acting the whole thing - then the woman in black of course, imagine having her job, what a skive!!  I've not read any scary books since those ones from school (Babysitter, Babysitter 2, Babysitter 3, etc... I'm sure there were other ones but those stand out!) so I thought it would be quite interesting, also to see how it differs from the film and the play.

Have you got any books high up on your 'to read' list?


Monday, 18 February 2013

Valentine's Day Look

Soo unfortunately I managed to break my memory card a few nights ago - 16GB, soo gutted!!  I can't afford to buy a new one until next month so it's gonna be photos from my phone, or ones I took ages ago, for the time being I'm afraid!

Before I broke it, I did a Valentine's Day make up look for cutECOsmetics using Lime Crime and OCC products which they sell on their website (shown below).  For all the details visit cutECosmetics' blog here.  My post is the second of a series of guest posts by different bloggers using lots of their lovely cruelty free products, so I recommend that you follow them for those!

In other news, have you all heard about the ban on animal tested products in the EU from 11th March?!  It's such an achievement!  I am so looking forward to that date to see what a lot of companies do, because as far as I'm aware ones like L'Oreal will have to withdraw from China if they want to continue selling in the EU, since in China animal testing on cosmetics is mandatory.  I'm just wondering if I can go back to buying from companies I'd previously have avoided, when would it be 'safe' to do so, would I even want to??  So many questions!

What are your thoughts on the whole thing?


Friday, 15 February 2013

The Body Shop Mango Body Scrub

This is a rather expensive scrub as for 200ml it costs £12.50.  However I bought mine online using a 35% discount which are available quite often on their website, this brought it down to £8.13 which is much more reasonable!

This stuff smells amazing!!  It smells so sweet and fresh rather than being a horribly synthetic scent.  The actual 'scrub' is mostly sugar but salt is a high up ingredient too.  It is nice to use and isn't too rough on the skin.

The downside to this is that it leaves an oily residue which is quite hard to get rid of.  I use it on my back (I have a strange eczema-like condition on my back  - TMI? - so I'm trying to use a scrub regularly to see if it helps!) and on my thighs, but then I wash myself after which does get rid of some oils but I always still feel it afterwards.  If you moisturise after coming out the shower you may not feel it as much as the moisturiser might help it be absorbed into the skin.

Another negative point is that unfortunately is it contains one paraben as preservative.  Personally I don't mind too much as it's only one, but I know a lot of people want to avoid these completely so I thought it was worth mentioning.

I'm not sure whether I would repurchase this.  I'd still like to try other scrubs from The Body Shop, but I'd definitely be waiting for a discount code first as £12.50 is a bit steep!

What's your favourite scent from The Body Shop?


Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Liz Earle Botanical Shine Shampoo & Conditioner

shampoo & conditioner review

I was needing a new shampoo and conditioner so I decided to try the Liz Earle ones as they just sound so promising.  They are 'all natural', SLS-free, paraben-free, cruelty-free products, and I'd heard good things about them, especially the shampoo.  I remember it being on QVC when they first brought it out and they were talking about how amazing the shampoo is and that it gets all the build up crap out of your hair from previous hair products.

I only got the travel sizes of both as they are not cheap and didn't want to splurge without trying them first.  The full size (200ml) is £8.50, and the travel size (50ml) is £4.75; so it is still quite expensive but worth it to try.

I would love to say I loved these, I really would - but I genuinely just didn't get on well with them at all.  I found it hard to get a good lather from the shampoo to start with, which has to be expected when it doesn't contain SLS which is the main foaming agent in these sort of products.  I found I had to use quite a lot of shampoo to get a good lather, when it says on the tube that a little goes a long way.  I think that your hair gets used to not having SLS as I've found with that, and other SLS-free shampoos (such as Naked) that if you repeat then you only need a tiny bit the second time, and the more you use it, the better lather you will get.

Now, 90% of the time I go to bed with my hair wet, I put a towel on my pillow and go to sleep.  It has always worked out totally fine for me - I know it makes a lot of people's hair greasy the next day but I've not really had that problem.  So I did this, as usual, but the next day my hair was just huge and frizzy!  I have long, thick hair and it just kind of exploded when I brushed it.  The next time I washed it I applied mousse to try and control it, but I must've put too much on as it ended up looking greasy at the ends.  The next few times I just left it again and once I even blow-dried it (shock horror!) but for some reason it would just end up looking like rats tails and slightly greasy at the ends - but not because of mousse!

I am so disappointed, I've no idea why this shampoo doesn't suit me, I don't think I've experienced this with any others before.  As for the conditioner I can't really say as I've only used it with the shampoo but as they should work best together I'm not rating it very highly!

Obviously it will be different for everyone but I just wanted to share how I found it with you.  The reviews on the website are all so good but it just shows you how differently your hair can react.

Has anyone else tried this?  Now I'm on a hunt for new ones to try, I think I'll get Organic Surge next.


Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Nail Varnish Challenge #1

Here is the first colour from my Nail Varnish Challenge, it is Coral Sands by Avon (not CF).  I bought this years ago and I think it was limited edition.  I wouldn't call this coral at all, it's more of a salmon pink with teal shimmer through it.

I don't think I suit this shade of pink to be honest, and because of how subtle the shimmer is (i.e. non-existant) it's just a bit boring really...  On a more positive note it has a nice formula and I've used two coats in the photos.

I'm not going to be keeping this one, if anyone likes to the look of it and wants to buy it off me feel free to get in touch!  It'll just be getting sold via next blog sale/eBay/car boot sale anyway :)


Saturday, 9 February 2013

Nail Varnish Challenge

I have so many nail varnishes that I haven't worn in years, and some I've bought and just haven't ever worn!  So I have decided to make an effort to wear these ones then I can decide whether I actually want to keep them or not.  I've dug this little pile out of my collection and put them aside.

I also think I have a couple from the mini sets that I've not worn and the other colours from this set:


I will try to avoid buying any nail varnishes until I've worn all of these - not sure how well I'll do in this but I'll have a go!

Wish me luck! Also feel free to join me in this challenge and if you do, leave a link below as I'd love to read it :)


Friday, 8 February 2013

A Rare Clothes Haul

I actually can't remember the last time I bought clothes! I've been buying quite a lot of dresses and things recently (by recently I still mean last year!) but casual clothes, nope. Which is quite stupid considering I'm not going to wear party dresses every day... Although because of work and college I wear black four days a week, then probably pyjamas another 2 days so I actually don't need that many to be honest, but I just get so bored of wearing the same things over and over.

I'm looking forward to doing a big massive wardrobe spring clean but I thought I should buy some more clothes first so I don't end up with nothing!

Primark - £10

Primark - £12

Primark - £5

Topshop - £16
(£14.40 with 10% student discount)

I thought the black top would be good for work with a wee strappy top under it as I always wear the most boring clothes to work, and the skirt will be good for both work and college.

It really annoys me that everything in Primark is so sheer!  But what can you expect really for the price!!

Have you bought any nice clothes recently?


Monday, 4 February 2013

NOTD: Coral Sun

I bought this Coral nail varnish the other day as Barry M were doing 3 for 2 so I decided to go for this as I don't have one this colours.  Although applying it on my nails it reminded me of the Tangerine nail varnish from Barry M but I haven't compared them side by side yet.  I would assume that Tangerine is more yellow and less pink.

I was looking at this on my nails and it was very uninspiring so I added Models Own Tropical Sun over the top and I love it!  New favourite combination!  Tropical Sun has a gold duochrome and tiny bits of gold glitter in it, it's so pretty when it hits the light.  I wore it to work and got loads of compliments from colleagues and customers.

(I was ambushed by Rory during taking the photos for this, at least he sort of matches!)


Friday, 1 February 2013

Special Soap Shop Bath Collection

bath bombs and bath salts

Bethany from the Special Soap Shop very kindly offered to send me a selection of her lovely bath products to try out and share my thoughts on here.  They are handmade, cruelty free and contain the following ingredients... The bath bombs contain sodium bicarbonate, citric acid and then essential oils depending on what 'flavour' it is. The bath salts contain magnesium sulphate, sea salt, epsom salt, natrasorb bath and again, the essential oils.

Out of the options I chose rose, lavender, vanilla spice and strawberry.  There are lots of other fragrances such as exotic spices, lemon, and coffee.

The bright pink one is lavender which should be purple but due to an error with her suppliers it ended up bright pink!! I just thought I should mention this in case you see the purple one and wonder why it's a different colour haha!

bath bombs
bath bombs and bath salts

Bath Bombs
I haven't actually used a bath bomb in ages as my bath product of choice tends to be a bubble bar, so I can't really compare these to any mainstream bath bombs.

For each one, I would drop it in after running running my bath. It sank to the bottom and fizzled away happily until they was nothing left.  I didn't find it left any sort of colour in the water even though the lavender and strawberry ones are quite bright.  It filled the room with a really pleasant, delicate aroma.  It wasn't overpowering at all, just quite soothing and relaxing.

If you like having bubbles in your bath then you could quite easily use the bomb first and then add some bubble bath after it has dissolved.

Bath Salts
I really loved this!  I expected to prefer the bath bombs as the idea of bath salts sounds quite boring to me but this was far from boring!  The one I had was Rose and so soon as I poured it in, the scent filled the room.  It was much stronger than the bath bombs but still not overpowering.  There were little petals in amongst the salts and it turned the water slightly cloudy.  It was a thoroughly luxurious experience!

You can buy these from Bethany's Etsy or Folksy shop for £2.60.  This weekend she is offering free delivery and 10% off with the code Valday1!!

You can also follow her on twitter @SpecialSoapShop.


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