Thursday, 30 October 2014

My 1st Giveaway

Hey everyone
Have decided to run a giveaway, gonna include beauty, makeup, candle products, choccies, everything a girly could want!
<a id="rc-40e4c0b91" class="rafl" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/40e4c0b91/" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>
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Michael Van Clarke 3 More Inches Life Saver Spray review

Hey everyone!!!
Hope you are all doing really well today :)
So when a friend a few months back saw a tweet from Michael Van Clarke asking for people to review their products, she sent me the link, and I tweeted them saying I would be interested, as it was a brand I hadn't heard much about, and anything that promises to make my hair grow I am up for!!
So they said they would send me a product to try and give a review on, so this is it!
I decided to give it 8 weeks to see how it performs overall and if it did give any extra length.
Let me first tell you, my hair is not good, its soo dry due to medications that unfortunately I will be on for life, so it is just a matter of finding something to really help and nourish it. When i let my hair naturally dry omg it needs worked with my GHDs it goes all frizzy and has a life of its own, and to top it off I normally get a day out of a fresh wash, then I have to turn to my trusty dry shampoo for a day or two till i wash it again.
So they had a task on their hands!!
They decided to send me the Life Saver Spray, and on the site it states it is like magic in a bottle, and smoothes even the frizziest of hair! hhmmm this would be great if it does I thought!!

The packaging itself was gorgeous, really luxurious

It retails at £19.50 in the UK, and is a great 500ml size, and looking at what I have used it will last a good while!
I was advised to spray into hair and style as normal or leave to dry.
The consistency was very gloopy and it ran out of the sprayer rather than a spray, so I ended up putting it on my hand and running a comb through it and into my hair.
I decided to leave to dry to see if it had any good effect, and in all honesty I wasn't impressed by using it this way, so then I thought why don't i try it on wet just washed hair, and yep there was a noticeable difference!

When I dried my hair you can see from the picture below, it was pretty frizz free, so I was pleased with that outcome!


I think my ends are always going to be dry, but I honestly couldn't complain, as here in this pic, I hadn't touched it with straighteners yet!

The best thing I noticed with the product was that on my second day after wash, I would have always been reaching for the dry shampoo but I didn't need it, it was grand!! On my third day I definitely needed it, but anything that cuts a day out is great in my book.

In terms of the length aspect, I honestly don't think it helped or hindered it. I haven't seen any changes, so I don't know if i would purchase it if it wasn't helping the frizz!

Michael Van Clarke have a huge range of products, and it is definitely a brand that I would consider in the future, the only negative I found was the consistency, but as I found a way around this, it wouldn't be something that would put me off the product!






Excuse the dodgy eyes on the pic, i honestly don't know what was going on here!! I wanted to give you a pic of the top of the head, where i normally have a lot of breakage issues, but this definitely helped matters!!


So to finish off, I definitely recommend you guys having a look at his store site, as I honestly think that there will be something to help anyone's hair. In terms of whether overall I think it has helped, there is no doubt it has helped the condition, but unfortunately not the growth, but I would definitely purchase as a leave in conditioner, no doubt about it!

Hope you liked the review, any advice on using it, or if you guys have used it before, let me know in the comments section!

Lots of love
Ali x




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Monday, 27 October 2014

Fab new candles I discovered!

Hey everyone!!
So my favourite thing about this time of year coming in, is that I can burn my candles and they give the house a gorgeous cosy feel. I must admit I have always liked the yankee candles, but they are so expensive to be burning regularly!
On my facebook there are always people advertising, wax tarts etc but i have always wondered how good they could be in comparison, and I have never bought any until now!!
I was in my local shopping centre on Saturday past and there were a few craft type stalls set up, so I dragged Scott over to see if there was any little bits of interest.
The stall that caught my eye was Meltz candles, a company from Castlerock in N.Ireland that specialise in homemade candles and little meltz for burners.
This stall is so cute and really showcases all of the products available.

There are so many scents available ranging from clean linen scents that evoke the memory of fresh linen in the breeze, right through to the deep cranberry spicy scents, so there really is something for everyones taste. Some of the scents include:
clean fresh
lemon fizz
cocnut and lemongrass
toasted marshmallow
black orchid
angel
chance
coco
vanilla sugar
english pear and freesia

This is just a selection of what they have to offer. They offer the following:
Large candles £12
Small candles £7
3 pack gift set of your choice £22
Burners £5 (the teapot one is my next purchase, too cute!!
Wax melt bars, £3

As you can tell from some of the scents, they are based loosely on some of the most popular fragrances on the markets, and trust me these are amazing!!
I could have spent a fortune, but i decided to try the melt bars. These are so cute!


I bought the English pear and freesia along with the black orchid one, I could have stood all day chatting to Donna and sniffing everything, they were gorge!!

Donna is a lovely lady who set this company up as a hobby initially and it has grown greatly. She really knows what scents work, and I am sure you will agree her prices are fab in comparison to other high street and higher end candle and home fragrance companies.

So on to the burning!!
I decided to try the pear one as it would be a lighter scent and hubby isn't keen on very strong scents so I thought I would keep the black orchid for a day he is at work.
I wasn't sure how many little squares i should put in, ( i forgot to ask cause i was too busy sniffing) so i put 3 in, you get 12 in the little bar.




It took about 10 15 minutes for a smell to start around the room, but wow it was nice!!
I think when i burn it tomorrow i will do 4 or 5 little pieces, as i felt the smell was subtle and i would like it a little stronger.

Overall these are fab, and I know now I will be ordering more and it would definitely make me think twice about buying the higher end products.

I think its great to help small local businesses, and I wish Donna and her company every success in the future
p.s she posts so get your orders in for Xmas!!

Contact Donna at
07707070420


Now I am off to watch the soaps and bask in the gorgeous smell of pear and freesia!

Lots of love
Ali xx




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Sunday, 26 October 2014

My 1st published guest post!!!

Hey everyone!!
Hope you are all having a fab Sunday whatever you may be up to!
So..... I have fab news, a couple of months ago, when i was trying to promote my blog on twitter from my account @passionandpreen a company Bloomstore gifts sent me a tweet and asked would i be interested in guest posting for them, something along the lines of a Christmas post about gifting!
I jumped at the offer, as there is nothing I like more than planning and buying my Christmas gifts so this was the perfect post to do, and it is an amazing opportunity to write for a new company.
So my post on the problem with Christmas was born, I have added this as a post here on my blog earlier so you could all enjoy it, but it was only today that it went live on the site!
For someone who does this as a hobby this was an amazing opportunity and one I will never forget!
This is a great new company, who specialise in luxury gifts including scarves and home fragrances, I think i will definitley be purchasing a couple of items!
I just want to do a disclaimer to say that I got no physical items in return for my post, I got the promotion from them, and in all honesty thats good enough for me!!
So if you want to check it out please do my guest post
Lots of Love
Ali xxxxx
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Saturday, 25 October 2014

The Top 10 tag

Hey everyone!!
Hope you are all well on this dreary cold Saturday!
Thanks to the lovely everyday unicorn, a fab blogger with an amazing writing style for the tag for the top ten products i cannot live without! Head over to Everyday Uniocrn to check her out you wont be dissapointed!
This was such a hard one to do, as its hard to pin point ten!!
Okay so lets start!
1. Foundation
ooooh now this is my product that is top of the list that i cannot live without. I have tried so many brands over the years from drugstore to very high end and everything in between. My skin is very combination at present, oily tzone, dry cheeks, but a bit of dryness at nose and forehead, so you can see it is a mission to find a good formula.
I have to admit the one i always fall back to is MAC Studio fix, i was initially matched in the shade nw15 but never was fully happy with it, so when in my local MAC store recently i got rematched, and the girl felt that the NC range would suit me better and i have to admit, i was wary cause i am very fair and high coloured cheeks, but this is pretty good, so i will have to say my fave has to be this. Check it out here MAC Studio FIx


It wont be for everyone, but i feel that i can use my Real Techniques stippling brush and it works great with a medium buildable coverage!

2.Concealer

This is a very hard choice for me as it is a toss up between Rimmel Wake Me up Concealer which i would use on a day where i don't need much coverage and the MAC Pro longwear which i always use on the days where i have wee breakouts or i feel my red cheeks are very bad.
I think my choice has to be the MAC one, i just feel it sits better on my skin, and doesn't sit in the little crinkles round my eyes, and doesn't highlight any wrinkles which is always a bonus!!



3.Powder

This has to be the easiest choice ever!! Just like so many bloggers and youtubers we all seem to love Rimmel Stay Matte Powder
I used loads of powders over the years to combat my oil slick forehead, but none ever seemed to do well enough. Then during a marathon youTube session i came across this powder. I must admit i had never rated Rimmel as a brand but this has totally changed my mind. It is very fine and you don't need a lot of it to make a difference, which is fab for me and my random dry patches!



4.Blush
Ahhh blusher, the bane of my make up routine! I have always loved the idea of a pink blusher but just take a minute to think of my red cheeks and pink blusher! That's not a good look is it!
So i have went now to the golden brown peachy colours, and I must admit, it is working a lot better with my skin tone!
I dont have a really stand out blush if i am honest, just because of the love hate relationship, but the one i go for most is Benefit Sugarbomb It has goldy tones with a hint of pinky that i can still get away with, but on a really red cheek day, i find myself just using the 2 golden tones. Its a gorgeous formula and feels so light on my skin. Definitely recommend this one!

5.Bronzer
Again here I have a little love hate relationship, I never seem to find the perfect colour for my really fair skin, so if you guys have any recommendations, let me know!
I always reach for my MAC Bronzer
In all honesty this is the best of a bad bunch that i have, so i don't always wear bronzer!

6. Highlighter
I never really understood the benefits of a highlighter until again i was having a youTube session, and I saw a stunning one on Tanya Burr seriously you need to check this girl out if you dont know who she is! One of the original youTube sensations!!
She was wearing a MAC one, Soft and Gentle I think it was, and when i went into store they were out of stock, and the assistant suggested Lightscapade it looked very very light to me, but it was very pretty on my brow bone, so I bought it and when i have my full make up on, its gorgeous just on top of my cheeks, my cupids bow, and my brows, a little goes a long long way with this so it will last you a lifetime, I am still lusting after Soft and Gentle, so I think I need to give a few hints to hubby!



7. Mascara 
Again one of the easiest choices on my list. It has to be Avon Mega Effects
Lets just take a minute to look at how fab it is

Okay lusting over!! This really is fab, from the unique wand to the creamy formula, there isnt a mascara that has come close in my eyes. It takes a little getting used to as the angle you set the wand effects the results, but you can get very natural lashes right up to full on glam very easily!
The only negative I have for this product, is that when you pull the wand out, i think it could dry very easily in the tube, but if you use mascara as often as i do, then this wont be a problem.
Avon are really coming into their own in my opinion the past year or so, it got not a great name for a while, but its now getting the credit it fully deserves!
8.Eyeshadow
Ahhhh now this is hard. I switch from MUA palletes to single MAC palletes all the time, but if i am being completely honest, I think it has to be MAC all that glitters it is just such a stunning shade, I have blue eyes, and it compliments them well as an all over lid shade. I normally wear this with a little deeper brown through my crease for a real easy smoky brown eye. Or even on its own and a slick of mascara during the day. Its a dream to work with and blend even as a transitional colour. Can you tell i love this goldeny, sheeny pretty colour!!

9.Brows
Oh my brows, another love hate!! I have naturally thick brows a la Cara!! but i inherited one distinctly shorter than the other, my mummy had the same thing crazy. I tried to do my brows with pencil but i looked horrendous to say the least, so when i tried powder i thought i had fixed things, but my wonky brow likes to stick up at the end! So i really needed something to stick it down so to speak!! Then i discovered Avon perfect brow kit One word AMAZING!!
You can choose between a light and dark colour and you get a little wax to set the brows, this really is great and is inexpensive! Only negative would be that the wax seems to get dirty very easily, so i have now started using a separate eyebrow brush for the wax!


10. Lip Products

This is a toughie as i go through stages of loving glosses over lipsticks and vice versa!
I adore MAC lipsticks as i think their staying power is amazing, but at the price of them its hard to buy them all the time.
I was lucky enough to win a competition on twitter recently from essence cosmetics and i got a huge package of makeup including lippies. One stood out for all the right reasons Barely There is a great colour, nude but definitely shows that you have something on your lips, and the formula wow, its very creamy and long lasting!
I think this type of colour goes with so much and has to be a staple in your kit, and at only a couple of quid, sure you cant go wrong!! I will without a doubt be purchasing a few more of the colours!!




So... Thats it ladies and gents my holy grail products. Looking at my list, I think i have a good combination of higher end and drugstore, which is really important in my eyes!

So my people i would love to do this are:


and any other gorgeous peeps, who would like to!!!!

Lots of Love
Ali




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Tuesday, 7 October 2014

The problem with Christmas!!

So.... The problem with Christmas

 I find myself staring at my spread sheet from Christmas 2013, yes I really do have a spreadsheet, I am slightly OCD about organisation, and I think I would need to get my skates on. Bearing in mind this all starts in early September and the normal person hasn’t even thought on Christmas!
I have already bought a few little gifts for the kiddies in our family and friends circle, but all of our friends etc still need to be bought.
This brings me on to the always asked question “What will I get them this year?” Again panic sets in, I really need to just learn to kick back and enjoy the process don’t I, but no I am the type of person you see panicking over who gets what, and what kid has the most presents etc.
To me buying Christmas presents is a military task, that starts straight after the previous Christmas, when I always write down my ideas and anything I have heard my friends or families say they like etc. Yep as you have guessed this all goes on to my spreadsheet for further reference!
For my girlfriends I always try and think what would I like to receive, due to the fact we are all pretty similar we know what we buy each other we will love. It always revolves around pretty jewellery, scarves, candles, spa treatments and make up or skincare, apart from my fab friend Lou who loves dragons and more gothic stuff, so this year I have found her a fab necklace that incorporates her love of gem stones and dragons, but ssssh don’t say a word!

 For my hubby Scott, he is your typical man child, Xbox, Comics and Rugby, so normally his presents are a mixture of games, dvds, rugby shirts or leisure wear and graphic novels. He is pretty easy to buy for so I don’t get too stressed over his thank goodness!
My dad is a whole other story, I think he must be the hardest person to buy for and he is the one who causes my spreadsheet the most heartache. He doesn’t have a hobby as such in terms of golf etc, his passion is computers, I honestly think this is where I got my geeky side from! He is always updating something or always has bits of computers all over his office room. As a running joke when my mummy was still with us, we always got him 12 cans of lynx deodorant, so even to this day I still do the same, although I think at the last count he had over 30 left, so maybe this year I might cut down. He also gets slippers and a fleecy bodywarmer, so those are easy enough, but its always the big pressie I struggle with! It is always something to do with the computer, he picks and I pay!
Mum sadly isn’t with us anymore, but the year before she passed her and daddy bought me a set of goats from the Oxfam website, and from then every year I have bought a pair of goats in her name and give daddy the card.
Overall I honestly do feel people get so caught up in what to buy each other, and it really is hard but I do have some handy tips to help you pick pressies and to get you through the madness of it all:
1)      Make a spreadsheet or list, with several columns including ideas, idea settled on and a purchased column. I promise this will make life easier for you. If you don’t have access to a spreadsheet, do it on a piece of paper, or buy a little pretty notebook, so you can keep it for the next year.
2)      Think about the people you are buying for, don’t just rush out and see whats in your budget and buy it, you don’t want your gift at the back of a cupboard, goodness knows I have a few of these! Think about their hobbies, job, and interests. Make notes and if you are with them and they talk about something jot it down in your mobile for future reference.
3)      Try and set a budget either per person or an overall budget. I always work with a per person budget so I know exactly what needs to be saved etc. People always see it as more is better, but I am sure that even if it has to be a smaller gift it will still be appreciated. It makes me sad when I hear about people going into crazy amounts of debt for Christmas, this just makes the rest of the year hard for them.
4)      Start as early as possible, don’t worry if you are that person in the card shop buying your cards in January and wrapping paper, just smugly smile and know that come the rush you can sit and relax with a hot chocolate!
5)      Personally I try and do all gifts apart from Scott and Daddys before the end of October. This way I know exactly how much I can spend in November and December on the two main people. Other people would say do it the other way round, get the main ones first then work with the rest, just do whatever you feel is right for you and the people around you.
6)      Always keep an eye out for sales in September October time, some of the big department stores have good sales on around then, and I always find myself picking up a few bargains normally kiddies clothes and toys then.
7)      Finially just RELAX, at the end of the day, focus on being together or sending something small but heartfelt to each other.
I hope this article has been informative for you, please try not to stress, it will all be forgot about when its 3pm and we are all having our after dinner nap!

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