27 February 2014

Bioderma Cleansing Cream : Review

Realising I now enjoy spending my money on the items I've pinned on my Pinterest 'Interiors' board over pricy drinks in London bars confirms to me that I am, officially, a proper grown up.

Although three weeks ago this new found sensibleness somewhat backfired. 

I had purchased fancy new feather pillows for my bedroom but woke the following morning to discover my face and neck covered in blotches. I'd had an allergic reaction to them. 

A bag over my head, a GP trip and some Aqueous cream later I found the lotion prescribed to apply messily, be non-absorbent and stain my new (less fancy) polyester pillows. 

I thought I'd give the Bioderma Nutri-Protective Cleansing Cream* a whizz, intrigued by the fact it is marketed for dry to very dry sensitive skin and therefore less likely to irritate my rash covered face.

It felt rich but not greasy when lathered onto wet skin. A creamy texture with a subtle but unobtrusive fragrance. The ingredients were soothing and eased the feeling of tightness while creating a much needed layer of moisture to my broken, flaked skin. 

This paraben, soap free, hypoallergenic product also limits proliferation of the organisms that can aggravate dry skin. I'm not entirely sure what that means if I'm honest but it worked a treat.

Whilst of course I would never recommend any product in place of your GPs prescribed medication I found the Bioderma cleanser a positive addition in hastily eradicating the unsightly blemishes left by my allergy. My skin was soon feeling soft and nourished again.

As a sufferer of dry-skin even on my best day, the Bioderma Cleanser has now deservingly taken centre stage in my skincare routine - and I think it'll be a hard one to beat!

Do you use Bioderma products? Do you suffer with allergies like me? 
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25 February 2014

QUICK! Super Cheap Real Techniques Brushes

Whilst undertaking the monotony of my weekly Asda shop I stumbled across quite the revelation in isle 11. 

Staring at me from a shelf alongside discounted DVDs was a Real Techniques display stand which looked like it had been turned over by a pack of wolves - probably from in-the-know beauty junkies alike, snapping up what is obviously the deal of the century...

Asda are selling these cult brushes ridiculously cheap. 

Now I don't know whenever the price-disher-outterer at Asda's head office has made a huge mistake? Perhaps they don't realise what they have? Or order in such massive bulk they can afford to pass the discount on to consumers? Either way I snapped them up and joined my fellow beauty lovers in the isle 11 pack-like mentality. 


An Expert Face Brush for £5.29 and a Blush Brush for £5.97? I'll take two!

The Core Collection is particularly generous at £12.34. In Boots these retail at double the price - even on offer are never that cheap.

I'm sure you'll find Real Techniques in your local Asda store but they're also currently on the Asda Direct website here - but be quick! Unsurprisingly they're selling out super fast (I placed a 'back up' order Sunday night and some of the items are out of stock already!)

So there ya go. Don't say I don't tell you anything! ;)

Do you use Real Techniques brushes? Which ones are your favourite?  photo Screenshot2014-01-21at092411.png

24 February 2014

Cage Sandals - Linzi Shoes

If you're a shoeaholic like me I have no doubt that you are already acquainted with Linzi shoes.

Linzi is an online retailer that also hosts a small chain of shops selling affordable, fashionable footwear.

Rewind 5+ years and Linzi was just my little secret!

The brand had two shops in Romford shopping centre in Essex. I fondly remember going in on Saturdays and being met by a combination of cheerful shop staff, trendy yet affordable shoes and the best of UK Garage blasting from the speaker system assisting my mood for my pending night out.

The business grew with the opening of more stores and Linzi began trading online. Despite the shift from small retailer to fashionista's firm favourite their prices remain affordable with designs to rival bigger brands.

I recently popped into the new(ish) Westfield Stratford City branch for a mooch. A mooch in Linzi often results in a purchase and this time it was no different.

I found these beautiful nude patent caged shoes (more affectionately titled 'Stacie') for a reasonable £30. Having seen similar 5 minutes earlier for double the price - and as you'll known from venturing to Fashion Week or having seen the Street style pictures online; stacked, caged 90's inspired sandals are all the rage this SS14. 

I had to have them.

Despite the lack of DJ Luck & MC Neat soundtrack at the Westfield branch (much to my disappointment) my browse on Saturday reignited my love of Linzi & a wishlist of my current faves:

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Have you shopped at Linzi before? Do you like any of the shoes from my wishlist or the Linzi website? 

NB: This post is in no way sponsored. I just think the buyers do a fab job! :)
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7 February 2014

Spring At Home: High Street Edit

Whilst it's still freezing here in London, slowly the nights are staying lighter longer, flowers are rising from their beds and our favourite clothing retailers are showcasing candy coloured hues.

But what about at home? By switching just a few key accessories we can also transform our interiors. Making it not only simple to keep our rooms as seasonal as our wardrobes - but often really affordably too!

Here's my current favourite High Street picks all retailing for £30 or less: 

Do you change your home accessories often? Or is it strictly your wardrobe that gets a seasonal update? 
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6 February 2014

Carrie & Big, Bert & Ernie...

...Homer & Marge - Topshop & Adidas?!

Yup, that's right the hottest fashion partnership so far in 2014 is news that High Street fashion chain Topshop is teaming up with sportswear giant Adidas Originals to create a 20-piece collection due for launch on March 20th.

Infusing 'sportwear & femininity' with Adidas' signature triple stripes, styles will include scoop neck vests, trackie bottoms and hoodies alongside new interpretations of the brands Attitude, Superstar & Tech Super trainers.

So it looks as though the sports luxe trend is here to stay!

Will you be indulging in the collection? Do you like the sports luxe trend? 
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Pictures copyright: Adidas/Topshop

5 February 2014

Moments That Mattered: 2013

I've read a few inspirational Moments That Mattered posts of late and after a little investigation realised these uplifting entries are in conjunction with Lloyds bank and fellow bloggers with a chance to win a brand spanking new iPad mini worth £249

The aim of the post is to detail moments that mattered in 2013. 

I hope that it's ok for me to share mine..?

12 months prior to 28th September 2013 I was 3 stone heavier. The equivalent of two large bags of dog kibble. 

I was unhealthy & unhappy, squeezing into seats and wheezing up stairs. I hated the double chinned reflection staring back at me from the mirror and my favourite thing to do in the world - shop - had suddenly became a laborious plus sized chore. 

January 2013 was the moment I decided to do something about it. I was that new year cliche with a gym membership & new trainers again but this time I was determined it would be different. 

I also joined my local slimming club for encouragement. (Awards for the fridge work well with grown ups too!)

6 weeks in and I had lost my first stone but I started to relapse. I needed something to aim for, something to keep me motivated...

Growing up I unusually lived with my Mum, Dad & Nan Lily. Whilst friends thought it was odd that my Gran wasn't someone I just visited at weekends, I loved having her around all the time. She was the person who said yes when my parents said no and the one who'd naughtily put an extra spoonful of sugar on my Weetabix each morning (sorry Mum!) 

In 2003 Nan was diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer. I was just 16 and mid-GCSEs. The world suddenly seemed an unfair place when she died in hospital just 4 weeks later.

2013 would have also been Nan's 100th birthday. It seemed fitting to do something to honour the lady who meant so much to me, as well as raising money for a deserving charity and to keep me motivated on my slimming journey.

In a moment of madness I (along with my friend Courtney) signed up to complete the Shine 26.2 mile marathon in London for Cancer Research UK.

I began training hard, walking everywhere, pushing my personal best a little more each time. I smiled as our sponsorship totted up. Our JustGiving page littered with 'You can do it!'s & appreciated words of encouragement. 

On the evening of Saturday 28th September 2013 I began the mammoth challenge 3 stone lighter. It rained, I was tired, muscles ached and my blistered feet hurt.

...but at 6am - seven hours later I had crossed that finish line. 

I had completed the full 26.2 miles!

Crossing that finish line was my moment that mattered in 2013. Not only for the personal achievement of doing something I thought I never could, nor even for my weight loss - but in remembering that even though Nan's no longer here with me, she's still as a significant part of my life, supporting & encouraging me 10 years on...

...& yes, I did have a sugary bowl of Weetabix to celebrate! :)

Did you have a Moment That Mattered in 2013? Why don't you get involved & you could be entered into the prize draw with Lloyds bank to win an iPad Mini? 

This post links back to these lovely blogs: Away With The Fairies, Oh So Ameila, Miss Lucy Loves, & Mummy's Little Monkey. 
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4 February 2014

Primark Haul: February 2014

With the end of January & my favourite blogs full of Spring-spiration I headed to the Tottenham Court Road flagship to sniff out some new season bargains.

Keeping lilac, spearmint & peach in the forefront of my mind. Here's what I found upon the racks of Primark this month...

First up this powder blue structured bag. A handy size for all my essentials and features a detachable shoulder strap. 

Great for £6, especially as it's not too dissimilar to Phillip Lim's £440 offering!

I had to have this spearmint mohair jumper for £10 after purchasing similar in Topshop at almost treble the price a few weeks back.

In keeping with the green theme I also picked up this oversized loose knit sweater. Annoyingly it's already gotten caught on everything but at £10 for this spring staple it's not the end of the world if it ends up a one season wonder.

My bargain find of the day was this muted blue ribbed jumper - just 5 British pounds

I could easily imagine this £25 white biker style waffle jacket hung upon the shelves of a more mid-priced store.

I loved the floral ditsy print of this collared blouse ...but not Primarks tendency to make them so sheer! Oh well, it's nothing a vest can't fix. £8

This peach jumper is longline so perfect teamed with leggings for lazy days. It has a zip detailing running down the back which will wake you up in the morning. It's FREEZING! £10

These quilted tee's were just £6 each. They conform to Springs muted pastel pallet perfectly. I buy mine oversized as I prefer a more boxy fit.

Next: This blue-grey peter pan collared blouse. It features a subtle feminine pleat to the back and is quite cropped. For this reason I bought it oversized as no one wants to see my muffin top! £8

I'm loving this beautiful floral jacket. Biker style with a fun, summery print. I wonder if there are matching bottoms? £15

I found this monochrome jacket lonely on the sale rail but the ticket hadn't been marked down. I assumed someone dumped it in error but thought I'd try my luck at the till incase. Fortunately it was £7 down from £15. I've noticed Primark's £15 jersey jackets rarely stay full price long.

I paid £25 for this 60's-esque peach mac with lazer cut detailing. I'm still umming & ahhing whenever to keep it as I'm not sure the style suits me.

This is actually a beach cover up sold in the holiday section, although I think it'll be better suited as part of my festival wardrobe. My picture's do this £15 boho beauty no justice!

Striking footwear is here to stay in 2014 but my current chunky boots' heel aren't cut out for serious walking. I found these stacked 90's inspired plimsolls for £8 to pound the pavements in instead.

This soft pleather rucksack will see me well through this years theme park outings. At least the dusky pink girliness will compliment my roller coaster screams! £9

I've heard Tribal & Ethnic jewellery is big news this summer so I picked up this cobalt blue chocker for just £6

...I also sound these pastel flag necklaces for a bargain £3 each...

This pearlescent cluster statement piece glimmers expensively when it catches the light. Can you believe this was only £5?

And finally, I added to my collection with more candy coloured falsies. You can read more on my Primark nail booty here

Do you like anything I bought? Found any great bargains in Primark lately? 

Don't forget to enter my February giveaway here! xx
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