30/12/2012

Aldi Lacura Wrinkle Stop: £4.99 wrinkle killer?

On a recent trip to Aldi, along with a few Christmas nibbles, I picked up their Lacura Wrinke Stop pen. I'd heard about this via some forums and I thought it sounded like a possible dupe for Rodial's Glamoxy Snake Serum.


The Rodial product is a bit like liquid botox - I tried it out a few times and it basically freezes the skin around your eye, diminishing wrinkles (temporarily of course). Now, this retails at over £100, so I won't be buying it, but I thought that if the Aldi version did the same thing for under a fiver, I would be on to a winner.

Wrinkle Stop contains 'Syn-Ake' an ingredient that is based on the premise behind snake venom - freezing muscles/skin which then minimises wrinkles (don't worry, it doesn't actually contain any snake products).


It comes in a syringe style applicator, which you press down to release the product. Don't push too hard as I found that this violently squirts the cream across the room...oops.

It looks like a pretty standard eye cream once you get it out of the tube, and once applied, I waited for the numbing sensation to begin.


Sadly, I was underwhelmed, as it didn't really have the same effect as the Rodial product. I didn't really feel any numbing/freezing sensation and my wrinkles looked the same.

That said, it was lovely and hydrating and as an eye cream, works fantastically. They have conducted research on this product and have proved that it does help to reduce crows feet by 24% over 28 days, so I will carry on using it and see if it makes a noticeable difference.

It might not have had the same immediate sensation as the Rodial product, but nonetheless, I'm quite impressed by the quality of this cream (as an eye cream), and for the price, it's a bit of a bargain.
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29/12/2012

My beauty resolutions for 2013

I've been thinking a lot about what I want 2013 to bring and so I wanted to share with you my resolutions for the next 12 months. I know i'm a few days early, but I do like to get a head start!

1. Remember that what goes into my body shows up on the outside. I've tried a lot of diets in the past, and all they seem to do is leave me looking pasty, my skin flaky and generally tired. This year I want to focus on healthy eating, not for weight loss, but instead to give my body all the nutrients it needs (having chocolate instead of salmon is not ok, despite the fact they contain the same number of calories!).

2. Don't buy things just because everyone else is. I'm a pretty good judge of whether a product will suit me or not, but I still find it easy to get sucked into product hype. So for the next 12 months, I want to make sure my purchases reflect me, not just the beauty trends.

3. Use up my stash. It's ridiculous and just keeps getting bigger, so for the month of January, I will be attempting a spending ban. I have one date that will be excluded from this, but other than that, I will be cutting out whimful purchases (full post to come on this!).

4. Keep blogging. 2012 saw the birth of this blog and I hope to continue it all the way through 2013. I've already met some wonderful people through this blog, and can't wait to see what 2013 brings.

5. Say YES to more things. This isn't really beauty related, but over the past year or so, I've found myself  hiding away a bit and not doing things that before I would have leapt at. Instead I seem to keep saying 'no' and I've found that I've lost a bit of my sense of self. So for the next year, I want to say 'yes' to more things and re-find myself (in a non-hippy way).

So those are my resolutions for 2013. What are yours?
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27/12/2012

Mini Christmas sale haul

Today I braved the crowds to do a spot of sale shopping. Armed with flat shoes and my wallet I headed off to Bluewater shopping centre first thing.

I'd seen a few things online that I wanted but had sold out so I was hoping to be able to pick them up in person.


The first thing I picked up was the Laura Mercier colour to go cool neutrals palette. This contains 3 eyeshadows, a tightline cake liner, blusher, bronzer and mini lip glac√©. It's perfect for traveling and as this is my first Laura Mercier product I though it would be a great way to try out the range. It was reduced from £30 to £15 which I think is a great bargain!


Next stop was Boots where I used my advantage points to treat myself to a Philosophy shower/bubble bath in Candy Cane (it smells divine, just like minty candy) and also a mini Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray. The Philosophy Christmas range is all half price at the moment so Candy Cane cost £7 and the Surf Spray (not in the sale, boo!) was £8.50.

I'm really looking forward to trying all of these products out over the next few weeks.

Did you buy anything good in the sales?

If anyone would like a 'what I got for Christmas' post let me know.
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25/12/2012

Happy Christmas!

Just a quick post to wish all of you a wonderful Christmas. I hope that you have a lovely day and that Santa brings you what you wished for. Don't forget to share those beauty gifts with me! I'd love to hear what you received.

Happy Christmas!!

Kat xx


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24/12/2012

Advent calendars - the final countdown

So today I opened the final doors on my advent calendars. It's been so much fun, and definitely more exciting than a chocolate advent calendar.

I realise that the beauty advent calendars are quite pricey, but I'm glad that I bought these and I will definitely save up to buy them again next year.

So what did I get in the final week of my advent calendars?

Latest in Beauty:


Steamcream 75g pot - I'm looking forward to trying this given all the hype around the product. The tin is also  so pretty, and I think I will end up keeping it once the product is finished!

Trilogy rosehip oil - a small sample, but intrigued to try this

Balm balm lip balm - this one might go to my mum as I prefer a different type of lip balm

Yardley royal diamond body spray - I'm quite surprised that I like the smell - I associate Yardley (perhaps wrongly) with people of my Nan's era.


Eve Kim rescue mask - this was one of the products that made me buy this calendar! I shall be giving it its first outing afterboxing day to help repair my skin from lots of festive food and drink.

Mont Bleu crystal nail file - I've not tried a crystal nail file before so looking forward to this.

AS London mini candle - this is a lovey travel sized candle. I'm not sure what the fragrance is, but it smells quite strong and spicy.

Ciate:

Caviar pearls sundance - turquoise and gold caviar pearls with little gold sequins in the pot

Cookies and cream - a light mocha shade

Mojito - lime green - I might save this one for more summery weather!


Fade to griege - a purply grey colour

Caviar pearls candyshop - a mix of hot pink, blue and orange pearls

Magic carpet - my favourite out of these, a hot pink glitter.


Enchanted rose - red glitter (I love glitter!)


Have you enjoyed your advent calendars this year? Will you be getting one next year?
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23/12/2012

Christmas nail picks

I wanted to share with you the top 5 nail polishes I've picked out for the Christmas season from my collection. It's been tough narrowing it down, but there are the ones i'll be choosing from for my Christmas Day nails.


Left to right:

Essie Skirting the Issue - I love this winter berry hue

Essie Nothing Else Metals - a subtle metallic lilac

Topshop Heart of Gold - Definitely Christmassy, this is a gorgeous shimmery gold

American Apparel Constellation - This is a confetti style silver glitter that would look great over the top of Skirting the Issue.

Nails inc Bling It On Rocks - these are loose powder glitters in silver and black and give a really unusual nail finish.


At the moment, I think I will be going for the Nails inc glitters - I like the idea of mixing the black and silver glitters together for a really sparkly Christmas nail.


What will you be wearing on your nails for Christmas? 
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21/12/2012

The winterlicious tag

I was tagged by the lovely Laura over at A day in the life of a Scottish Lass to do the Winterlicious tag, and i've had great fun putting these answers together - I hope you enjoy reading it!


What is your most worn Winter clothing piece?
Probably my vintage faux fur coat. It keeps me lovely and warm and I wear it with everything.

What is your Favourite Christmas/Holiday Movie?
Hmmm...my favourite Christmas movie is Bad Santa as I think it’s hilarious, but I also love watching ET every year when it comes on. It’s one of the handful of movies that makes me cry.

What is your most worn Winter accessory?  
A scarf – I have lots. They vary from snugly snoods to vintage silk ones, but it’s very rare for me to go out without one into the cold.

What is your favourite Winter eye palette?
Urban Decay’s Naked 2 palette. I literally haven’t worn anything else for the past month!

What is your favourite Christmas food/treat?
Anything made with puff pastry. I don’t really eat it the rest of the year, but go a bit mental over Christmas.

What is your favourite every day Christmas perfume? 
I like Oh Lola by Marc Jacobs. It’s not particularly wintery, but I like it for every day as it’s quite fresh smelling.

What is your favourite Christmas/Holiday Song?
I like a lot of them – they have to be cheesy, and easy to sing along to. That’s pretty much my only criteria.

Favourite Christmas blusher?
At the moment I am loving my Topshop blusher in Prime Time. It gives a nice rosy glow like you’ve been outside in the snow.

What is your favourite Winter beverage?
Mulled Cider. We have a local Christmas event each year which involves lots of people shopping, eating and drinking and I love to get a hot mulled cider to wander around with.

What is your favourite Winter lip product?
Lip balm – all of them! My lips dry out this time of year, so I’m applying it constantly.

What is your favourite Winter scent/candle?
I’m not a massive fan of Christmas scented candles, but I prefer things that smell like a Christmas tree.

Do you have any Christmas traditions? 
Our tradition at Christmas is to open presents in the morning, have a lovely lunch and then watch a film in the afternoon – not very rock n roll, but I like it.

What is your favourite Winter Nail Polish?
Anything with glitter. If it sparkles, I’ll wear it!

What is at the top of your Christmas list?
Marc Jacobs Dot perfume – I have a bit of a thing for it and have been lusting after it for the past 3 months.

What are your plans for the holidays this year?
I’ll be spending most of it with my family. I’m even hosting Boxing day at my house for the first time which I’m really looking forward to.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas!
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19/12/2012

100 follower giveaway - now closed

I'm so excited as earlier on this week I reached the 100 follower milestone on my blog.

I thought that would be a great time for my first giveaway, and i've been putting together a little bundle of goodies that you can win, including Molton Brown hand cream, Ciate and Rimmel nail polish, Rituals body cream, an MUA Undressed palette and much more!



You can enter via the Rafflecopter widget below and i'll be drawing the winner in a few weeks time. This is a UK only giveaway this time, but I hope to do an international one in the future.

N.B This giveaway is now closed, but keep your eyes peeled for future ones.
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18/12/2012

Ciate sequin manicure review

Well hello party nails! The Ciate sequin manicure is possibly the most 'bling' nail effect i've seen so far; perfect for the Christmas party season.

The sequin manicure comes in a kit that contains 'glitter grip' - a clear coat, a pot of multi coloured mini sequins and a little brush to help you remove any excess.


There are three colour ways available at the moment, I purchased Tutu, a blend of pink, purple and gold sequins.


I found it really simple to use. First you apply a coat of the glitter grip and allow it to dry. Then taking one nail at a time, apply another coat and dip your nail into the pot of sequins. Push them down onto your nail and using the brush, remove any excess from the sides. You then apply another coat of glitter grip over the top to seal them in.


I found that I had to wait about 40 minutes before my nails were totally dry, so you do need a bit of patience. I also applied two coats of glitter grip over the sequins to try to help them stay on as long as possible.


It was a bit messy (ok, a lot messy), but as long as you put down some paper to do the application on, you should minimize the distance the sequins travel across the carpet!

I had mine on for 3 days and there was only some minor wear to the tips. I did them for my Christmas party and got lots of compliments on how lovely they looked. Removing them was also rather tricky, but 10 minutes using the 'foil method' soaked them off without too much effort.

At the moment, I believe you can only purchase these from Selfridges, for £14 a set. I think it's well worth it. The pot of sequins is enough for many applications, so this is something you can use over and over again.

I'll definitely be repeating my sequin manicure over Christmas!
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17/12/2012

Advent calendars days 15, 16 and 17

Here's a quick round up of the past three days in my advent calendars. I actually got two of the products i'd been waiting for from the Latest in Beauty Calendar which was a nice bonus.

Latest in Beauty:

Aromatherapy Associates Revive bath and shower oil - enough for a single use, this smells really citrusy and perfect for the morning.


Mirenesse lip plumper - looking forward to trying this. It promises to be more than a normal lipgloss, so I shall see if it lives up to its claims.


Nicky Clarke Instant Calmer - hopefully this will work wonders on my fine but fluffy hair! 


Ciate:
I received two really bright shades - 'Headliner', a bright blue/turquoise, and 'Big Yellow Taxi', a bright yellow. I was a bit stumped with what to do with the yellow as it's not really my colour, but Angelica over at One Little Vice made a great suggestion of pairing it with the Bumble Bee nail caviar that came earlier on in the calendar, so look out for a NOTD featuring that very soon.

There was also a dark navy blue called 'Power Dressing' (love the name) that I will get a lot more use out of. 



There aren't many doors left to open on my calendars now, but I think there are some good ones waiting for me behind them! 
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16/12/2012

Bbloggersxmas bloggers event

On Saturday I attended BbloggersXmas, a beauty bloggers event in London.

Organised by the fantastic Victoria and Lola, the event took place in Canary Wharf and brought together over 60 beauty bloggers with brands such as Slendertone, Aromatherapy Associates, Bad Apple, Diva, Twisted Sista and Bronze Ambition.

I'd arranged to meet some lovely bloggers before hand at Euston station, and we all headed over together.

The fab Gemma Button and Angelica with me at the event.
There were yummy snacks (mmm, cake pops) plus the opportunity to get hand massages, nails painted and to try some new hair styling appliances.

Getting a hand massage from Aromatherapy Associates
Sophia and Georgina discussing makeup.
Mmm...cake
Diva hair styling tools
It was so lovely meeting lots of bloggers that I'd been talking to via my blog or via Twitter and to actually get to meet them face to face!

There was also a beauty quiz which we all entered, and to my total surprise, I won! I was given an amazing bag of goodies, so expect some reviews on these very soon.

My quiz prize (minus one product)


The day ended with an amazing goody bag, with so many products in, I think I will be reviewing them for months to come!

Thank you to Lola and Victoria for such a fantastic event and hello to everyone that I spoke to whilst I was there.

If you were there and I didn't manged to talk to you, please pop by and say hello!
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14/12/2012

Advent calendars days 12, 13 and 14

I think I've had my favourite shades from the Ciate calendar over the past few days. Two of the three polishes are glitters, which is my favourite!


I received Twilight, a black polish shot with gold glitter. This has to be my best one so far! There was also Glass Slipper, an electric blue glitter which I think will look fantastic layered up to be opaque. The third polish is a bright orange, Speed Dial, which I will be saving up for spring.

You can see the gold in this shot a lot better.

From the Latest in Beauty Calendar, I received:

Balance Me Radiance Face Oil - I'm looking forward to trying this. There have been a lot of Balance Me products in beauty boxes recently but not this one, so it will be good to test it out.


St Tropez instant glow body lotion - I think this is one product I won't use. I don't wear fake tan at all, so this will probably get gifted away.


Bella Pierre loose eyeshadow in Celebration - this is a gorgeous bronze loose powder. I've not tried any Bella Pierre products before so I hope I like it!


Have you tried any of these products?
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13/12/2012

Topshop Prime Time blusher review

Prime Time is the first Topshop blusher I've tried. I've always eyed them up when browsing their massive nail polish selection, and after much deliberation, decided to give one a go.


A hot pink colour in the compact, this blends out to a lovely soft pink. I was rather scared of the colour when I first saw it, but with a light touch, it looks really natural.


A cream blusher with a powder finish, it's easy to apply and blend. A little goes a very long way, so I use sparingly, building up as needed. It lasts a good 7/8 hours before needing a little touch up. I use my fingers to dot this on and blend out, but it will also work well with a stippling brush, and the creamy texture makes blending a dream.

Top - swatched once, bottom - blended

The packaging is really cute. It feels very sturdy and has a mirror in the compact to make application easy on the go.

I think Topshop's makeup range is such excellent value. This retails at £6, and will last for months, even with everyday use.

Have you tried any Topshop blushers before?
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11/12/2012

Advent calendars days 9, 10 and 11

I have been especially impressed with the past three days of goodies from my calendars as they have been new things I've been looking forward to trying.

In my Latest in Beauty Calendar I received:

Bioeffect EGF serum - good for anti-ageing. I've never tried any Bioeffect products before, so this will be a real treat.

Dermalogica sample pack - containing special cleansing gel, daily microfoliant, skin smoothing cream and multivitamin power firm eye cream.


Jo Hansford intensive conditioning masque - I can definitely use this at this time of year as the cold dries my hair out as well as my face!



In my Ciate calendar, i had two really lovely coloured polishes:


Lady luxe - a fabulous gold shimmery glitter
Mistress -  a bright red colour

I think these two make perfect Christmas polishes.

Plus, I also received the second of my nail caviar pearls, this time in bumble bee - a mixture of black and yellow pearls. I think this will make a great feature nail.


I'm really looking forward to giving these all a try. The only thing I have found with the Ciate polishes so far, is that they have a very strong smell. Now I know nail varnish always smells, but these are really quite strong, so it's just something to be aware of if you are buying them in future - maybe I need to apply them near an open window or something...
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10/12/2012

Elnett hairspray: because it's worth it?

For the past few months, I've been scrimping when it comes to hairspray. I used to be an Elnett girl through and through but started using a Boots own brand a while back due to the cost.

My hair is quite flyaway, so combining autumn with a windy, wet walk to the station/work every day, my lovely Elnett also just wasn't quite strong enough to hold my 'up' hair in place securely.


However, cheap hairspray seems to have dried the ends of my hair out - not nice. So this weekend, I went back to my old favourite and purchased some Elnett.

Elnett promises to offer hold that brushes out easily without any sticky feeling. It really does deliver - however sometimes I feel that you have to use a little more than you would with cheap hairspray to secure your hair, but because it doesn't give that nasty 'crispy' feeling or leave me with horrible dry hair, I think it's worth it.

Elnett comes in three sizes: a small handbag size, a 200ml (which I bought) and a giant 400ml can. I paid £4.00 for my 200ml can, which given the difference it makes to my hair, isn't that bad at all. It will probably last about a month or so, and I use it every day pretty much.

I think I'm back to being an Elnett convert once more!
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09/12/2012

NOTD: Essie Nothing Else Metals

Essie 'Nothing Else Metals' is a beautiful lilac chrome polish. Part of the mirror metallics collection, it has a really unusual finish to it.


It's one of the first polishes I've used that was opaque in one coat, however I gave it two for good measure! It does go on a little streaky, but once the polish dries, this isn't too noticeable. 

I managed to get this polish for the bargain price of £2.99 from the Xtras website. Considering it's still on sale in Superdrug/Boots as part of the diffusion line for £7.99, I was super pleased with this bargain! 

It has an average wear time of about 3 days before little chips start to show up.


I really love this polish. It offers a beautiful chrome finish that I haven't seen on other polishes previously. I think it's a great colour for winter as it gives a sort of 'ice queen' look, but the pastel shade will also carry right through spring. 

I think I will be going back for the other polishes in this metallic collection! 
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08/12/2012

Advent calendars days 5, 6, 7 and 8

Ok, so I'm a little behind on letting you know what's been behind my advent doors this week!

All of the treats have been fantastic and I'm looking forward to giving them all a try.

So what did I get?

Latest in Beauty calendar:

Richard Ward root booster - this will be interesting to test out on my fine hair.


Espa mini kit - this contains an eye cream and a moisturiser. I've not used Espa products before so intrigued to see what these are like.


Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation - can't wait to try this. It's a bit of a cult product and supposedly gives you a naturally flawless looking face.


Philosophy Purity 3 in 1 cleanser - I'm not sure about this one. I think my REN cleanser is my HG, so I'm a bit unwilling to swap it at the minute.


Ciate calendar:

Angel Wings - a cream creme finish shimmer

Cutie Pie - a light pink nude colour


Cabaret - a rich purple colour


Vintage, a medium grey colour.


What have you had in yours?
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