Thursday, 29 September 2016

Maca superfood banana smoothie

superfood smoothie recipe

200ml milk
Small pot  Yeo Valley natural yoghurt
1 teaspoon Back2Natural Raw & Organic Maca Powder
1 small ripe banana
1 teaspoon Pip & Nut Coconut Almond Butter

I recently purchased a couple of new foods - Maca Powder* from Back2Natural and a new flavour of Almond Butter from Pip & Nut - coconut.  So I thought I would combine them in a smoothie.

*Maca Powder has high levels of many nutrients, particularly potassium, calcium and it also contains essential fatty acids supporting the cardiovascular, reproductive, immune, and nervous systems


Immediately After!


Yum, a really tasty smoothie, it's going to become a regular, a nice change for lunch, filled me up.  Of course you could use any sort of milk mine was skimmed but almond or coconut  would be good choices, also any kind of nut butter too...


Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Q10 Sheet mask + cucumber eye pads

feeling tired & stressed - take time out with a sheet mask

It's been quite a week so when the lovely Lisa from B Beauty Ltd sent me some sheet masks* to try I was very excited.

I will be reviewing them all, this review is on the Coenzyme Q10 mask which I thought I would combine with Dirty Works Cucumber Eye Pads I had picked up at Sainsbury's £4 for 10, yes a real cucumber would be cheaper! but these come in sealed packs of two, so like the sheet mask easy to use and transport.

So a sheet mask, in case you don't know, is a sheet infused with product. This one from B Beauty Ltd is made of Japanese cotton. 

It was quite wet to unwrap but fitted my face a treat, and I popped a cucumber pad on each eye and had a little lie down for 20 mins 😊
When I removed the mask I gave my skin a good massage, and  always looking for value I then laid the mask across my neck for another 15 mins, after that I gently stroked the product into my neck using an upward motion.  My skin looked really hydrated afterward and felt softer plus no reactions at all, even the day after no breakouts!  I am off on holiday soon and will be taking the other two masks with me.  Sitting on the balcony (in the shade of course) hope I don't scare the locals!

2 more to try!

* post includes a PR sample


Thursday, 22 September 2016

System Professional

Repair Emulsion R4

I purchased this from my hairdressers, and I am so glad I did.  It works!

My hair is over processed, and quite coarse and dry, but this stuff makes it soft and manageable.
It 's got a lovely scent too.

To use, give the can and really really good shake, a a brief squirt produces a moose that you smooth all over your hair, concentrating on the ends.  Do this after shampooing, this replaces the need for conditioner.  Leave it on for as long as you can and then a really good rinse - I was told to repeat the alphabet twice to gauge the right amount of time!

Results, super smooth and managable hair - swish, swish.

I tend to use it every 10 days.

Tip the more you shake the can the longer it lasts, ie you are getting every last drop.


Tuesday, 20 September 2016

My first Palette - ProArtist Magnetic Palette

ProArtist Pro HD Refillable empty Magnetic Palette

I have been toying with the idea of getting a palette for a while, however this was an impulse buy as it was only £5 at Superdrug, it also ticked most of the boxes on my list:

  • It's black (they also do it in hot pink)
  • It is magnetic
  • Its is a medium size, it needs to fit into my make up case
  • Oh yes it was only £5!
It didn't tick the see through lid box (but it has got a mirror  inside).  It's made of plastic and I think I would prefer a metal case box (i.e. more durable), but oh yes it was only £5!

It's approx 7" by 5" or if you measure things in chocolate, like I often do, about the same size as a 110g bar of Cadbury Dairy Milk!
I also purchased one of the HD Pro Refills Matte number 07 for £2, see picture (from left to right the first one).  I found a couple of Lord & Berry samples that I had been given some time ago so popped them in the palette, simple.
However not content with just the three in the palette this bargain buy grew into a little afternoon project.  I already have several MAC eyeshadows and didn't want to go down the route of buying replacements, however I  didn't want to wait to use my new palette.

So I decided to pop my existing MAC eyeshadows out of their cases. The process was surprisingly easy and this YouTube clip really helped.

I didn't have any magnets to hand, so I have stuck them in with double sided sticky tape - happy with that.  I may at some point re do the with magnets.
The box says it would hold up to 18 of the Freedom Pro Eyeshadow or 12 of the contour, blush or highlighters shades.

Thanks for reading this post, hope you found it useful, now where did I put that chocolate.... (chomp, chomp)!!

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Skin Care... the products I stay loyal to

As a beauty blogger I love to try new products, and yes I have stacks of them!!!  Some of which I may have only used once, others I use and then move on to the next new thing, however there a few that I stay loyal to and they fall in to my 'Much Loved' category.  These are the ones that work for me, don't let me down and I have re purchased time and time again.

#1 Much Loved ... Skin Care

EstΓ©e Lauder Day Wear

In the jar (that way I get it all out).  First reason I brought it, it was one of earliest moisturisers which contained sun protection, it started off with SPF15 but you can now buy one with SPF25, so I've naturally upgraded to that.  I adore the smell, texture and the way it sinks into my skin, I really do  enjoy using it every day.  In summer I will top it off with an higher SPF 40 or 50.  When EstΓ©e Lauder have a promotion on - usually buy two products and receive a free gift - I will stock up on this if I don't need/fancy anything else.  A jar will last me about 5 months.

The Body Shop - Camomile Eye Make-Up Remover

They have recently changed the shape of the bottle (which I  don't like as much) but the product remains the same, and it's whats inside that counts!  This one has never caused my skin to react, and my eyes are sensitive.  It is able to remove my heavy duty eyeliner and mascara with a few strokes.  I would class this as a budget brand  (i.e. you could spend a lot more money), I have tried others that are as good  but no better, so I stick to this one. The Body Shop

I would love to know what your much loved products are... I've always got room for more! : )

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Hum drum... Bleeding gums

Lovely subject! but it is important so read on if you can...

This post comes under the anti-ageing heading, as bad teeth will age you and bad gums could affect your longterm health.

My front two teeth are crowned, I also have two veneers.  My gums around these teeth are very prone to bleeding - due to 'the foreign objects' in my mouth as my hygenist has explained to me.

OK so bleeding gums aren't good, you could lose a tooth but also, and this is the scary part, recent studies have shown a link between gum disease and dementia.  You can read the research here on the Alzheimer's Society page...  I've always cleaned my teeth of course, but this revelation has made me really try and tackle and stay on top of my gums.  My gums are still prone to bleeding, but they have vastly improved and this is due to the routine I follow below, which I would like to share with you.

teeth & gum cleaning routine

Dental Professionals
Visit the dentist.  Also find a hygienist that you trust and feel comfortable with and see them at least every 6 months, maybe every 3 if you need a bit of extra help.

Of course clean your teeth at least twice a day, but remember to brush your teeth and your gums.   I used to use a manual toothbrush but changed to an electric one a number of years ago.  One of the key benefits to me is having one with a timer as you should brush your teeth for 2 minutes, and that can be difficult to judge.  My current brush is the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean in black, as you can see it looks fab, and I like the fact that the glass that comes with it also acts as a holder and the charger.
Toothpaste, use one with fluoride, I've tried loads all much the same in my opinion and with a good tooth brush I'm not convinced you need one that whitens your teeth too, but of course it's down to personal choice.

Now this is key I think to good gum care.  I used to hate flossing my teeth to the point where I said I couldn't do it.  The gaps between my teeth are very tight especially the front ones, plus my teeth at the bottom cross over in places. I was scared of dental floss! I was convinced it would get stuck between my teeth.  Thinking flossing was not for me I tried the little interdental brushes but even the smallest size of these could not easily get between my teeth.  So I stopped, no flossing - bad idea.

I then discovered the Philips Sonicare Air Floss, and things improved a lot , but still not perfect. Luckily for me I got a new hygienist who introduced my to dental tape, which I had tried before, but she showed me Crest Glide Floss, and also assured me it would not get stuck! She also explained that the Air Floss was a good idea but flossing would always be better for me.   I made a real effort and started flossing, using a magnifying mirror and being very gentle.  The Glide Floss did not get stuck  :) and I started to see results.  With perserverance things got easier to the point that I can now floss without the  aid of a mirror (however I still like to use one as I find it satisfying seeing the results!!)


I mentioned above the  Philips Sonicare Air Floss, I fill the Air Floss with Listerine Advanced Defence Gum Treatment Mouthwash and then after flossing I use the Air Floss all round my mouth, twice.  I like the Listerine mouthwash, as unlike other brands it doesn't make my mouth feel dry after using.  Important - don't rinse your mouth after using mouthwash or you will wash it all away.

To conclude

Good gums = good teeth and could help to prevent problems in later life.
Smile at people and they tend to smile back.
Smiling lifts the face and makes you look younger  - and please don't worry about smile lines round your eyes.

Maybe you have great teeth and gums - good for you, keep them that way.  However if you suffer at all with bleeding gums please realise that you can do something about it, and more importantly you need to.

The above routine works for me, I hope you find it useful :)


Tuesday, 6 September 2016

End of the line ... MAC cremestick lip liner Pink Treat

The end of an era

You know how it is, for years you have been trying to find the perfect piece of make up, be it the best blusher for a natural glow, a stay proof, cry proof mascara, or in my case the perfect lip liner.

I always line my lips, for me lipstick doesn't look finished without it, and I like a good clean line.  I purchased my first MAC  cremestick lip liner in Pink Treat about 4 years ago, and from day one I fell in love, I had found the ONE!!

  • IT was the perfect shade
  • IT was soft but long lasting, it glided on and never scratched
  • IT felt lovely
  • IT gave me the perfect line - every time
  • IT was twist up, never needed to be sharpened

I didn't need to look anymore - I had found my perfect lip liner, I threw out all the other pencils I had and stocked up on Pink Treat, relaxed, sat back and smiled :)

However, my lip liner utopia was not to last - MAC have discontinued my product!!  If this ever happens to you like me you may not believe they would do such a thing.  How come the ideal product for me isn't universally loved?  In panic I went down the eBay and Amazon routes but these supplies soon dried up, and a recent trip to a MAC store in the USA proved fruitless  too.  MAC cremestick Pink Treat (and all the others colours) is extinct :(

Searching for my new love...

I have an ever growing collection of lip liners all purchased in the hope of being the next Pink Treat various degrees of success.  Here is what I think of them so far, based on the colour ease of application and the staying power, price not so much of an option as the MAC one was quite expensive about £18.00. 

1 = MAC 'pink treat't the standard to meet
2 = Rimmel Exaggerate number 105 'under my spell' πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹
3 = Rimmel Exaggerate number 024 'red diva'πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹
4 = Avon Ultra Glimmerstick 'pink bouquet'πŸ’‹πŸ’‹
5 = Sephora 'cashmere pink'πŸ’‹
6 = Sephora 'the pink of things'πŸ’‹
7 = Collection number 1 'nude pink'πŸ’‹
8 = Collection number 4 'pink'πŸ’‹
9 = Palladio 'plum'πŸ’‹πŸ’‹

πŸ’‹ used once
πŸ’‹πŸ’‹ passable better than nothing
πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹ will do for now

Bottom line - I've not found a suitable replacement yet - my search continues...


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