Sunday, 31 March 2013
Thursday, 28 March 2013
With all this freezing cold weather we’ve been having I’m sure a few of you have ben thinking and planning your summer holidays. As amazing as summer is, girls seem to spend forever getting our bodies ready for it, and one of those preparations is hair removal. We all have it and we all want to get rid of it. Thankfully there are many different ways to rid ourselves of it, but which method is your favoured option? I am a massive softy so can only ever manage shaving or waxing, but after speaking to my friends and family it seems that many of them are considering laser hair removal. In fact a few of them have already tried it, my mum being one of them.
She had been considering laser hair removal for some time and decided to have the treatment in the run up to her wedding day. Like many she was unaware that laser hair removal is process and for the treatment to work there needs to be a series of sessions. This is because the laser that destroys the hair’s root causing it to fall out does not have immediate effect. The laser weakens the hair root and it falls out over time. This tends to happen after around 5-6 sessions, so it can be a costly process,
A large proportion of my friends get their eyebrows threaded and judging by my twitter it seems that this is the favoured hair removal technique amongst beauty bloggers. However I also see many statuses amount how painful it is and after seeing girls in the middle of Fenwicks and Debenhams crying with pain I don’t know if this would ever be an option for me.
What I want to know is if you have ever tried laser hair removal or threading? I am intrigued by them both but want to know if it really is as painful as I hear. Are they more or less painful than waxing?
*This is a sponsored post/ Image from We Heart It.
Wednesday, 27 March 2013
|Image from tumblr|
Monday, 25 March 2013
I think I have found my holy grail of a lipstick! I know that I love Soap and Glory products, but I’m really not lying! You will know from the countless reviews on my blog that I am a massive Soap and Glory fan, however it wasn’t until December last year that I finally ventured into the world of Soap and Glory Cosmetics. I was very kindly sent a gift box from Soap and Glory full of their makeup products to try and the Super-Colour Fabulipstick Powdercoat Matte in shade PomPom was one of them.
I used the lipstick endlessly, and always had it in my bag. However I lost it… cry… so had to rush out and replace it as soon as possible. I am very happy to have the lipstick back in my life and I would say I am currently wearing it 4 days out of 7.
Soap and Glory Say;
“Glides on, stays put and packs a colour punch! Featuring Powdercoat Matt finish to fix velvety-rich colour to your lips, 3-D Plump peptide complex to tone and plump, and orchid extract to soften and moisturise.”
“ It definitely glides on like a dream, the lipstick is very creamy, and feels almost like a moisturising balm as it never drags on the lip or picks up on dry patches. It goes on perfectly everytime thanks to this moisture rich formula, which is quite unusual for matte lipstick which can sometimes cling. However this is light, velvety and tasty! I’m unsure about the lip plumping as haven’t really noticed that it makes my lips any bigger, however the colour is amazing! It is a plumpy, red and pink that is perfect for those who need a red lip but don’t have the confidence for a pillar box red. I think it is a very vampy colour and can be worn on nights out, yet due to the pinky tones in it I am still confident to wear it during the day as it isn’t too daring. The packaging is gorgeous, sleek and the heaviness of it, makes the lipstick feel more high-end than high-street.”
Have you ever tried the Soap and Glory Lipsticks? What did you think of them? Are there other Soap and Glory makeup products that you recommend?
Sunday, 24 March 2013
I know there is a bit of controversy about bloggers offering advertisement on their blogs, but to be honest I see no problem in making a little bit of money from something that we all put our heart, souls, time and effort into. I decided to offer advertising after receiving a number of emails asking if they could advertise one my blog, so if the demand is there I thought why not!
I am however only offering 4 advert spots a month as I don’t want my blog to be over cluttered, and personally I never look at all the adverts on other peoples blogs, so I want to make sure that your money is not wasted and that everyone will check out your blog or shop. The fewer adverts, the more likely that someone will check yours out! I want to make sure your advert is worth the money and it won’t get lost amongst 20 other adverts on the same page. Plus is means I can give each of my sponsors a separate weeks worth of love and attention!
If you are interested in advertising on my blog, please check out my advertising page. For this month only I am offer 50% off, so it will only cost you £4! There are only 3 spots left, so be sure to let me know.
What are your opinions about advertising on blogs? Is it something you offer, or have thought about? Or do you regularly advertise on other peoples blogs? I would love to know your thoughts!
It seems to becoming a bit of a habit of mine these baking posts. I do actually post quite often, as we have a weekly “Cake Day” at work. I also come from a long line of cake bakers. My mum bakes, my Nana bakes, my Great Grandma bakes and my Grampy bakes. There is very rarely a time when there isn’t cake around in one of my family member’s homes… which is of course very homely but not great for the waist line! Hence the mountains of running I now do!
On Friday night I came in from work and had the urge to bake. So Friday night I took over the kitchen, turned the music up and came up with the idea of Nutella Melt Cupcakes. I had a jar in the cupboard and thought it would be a great addition to my usual vanilla cupcakes.
I wanted to have a Nutella melting middle and was unsure how to go about this. I decided to make the cake mix, place that in the Cupcake moulds then add a dollop of Nutella in the middle and finally another spoonful of cake mix. This turns out not to be the answer. As you can see from pictures above the Nutella sunk to the bottom of the cakes. They are still yummy, but a little messy to eat! Next time I will be adding the Nutella to the cake after its been baked, either by scooping out the top and adding the Nutella before topping with icing, or try piping the Nutella into the middle. Anyways here’s my recipe for a simple vanilla cupcake, which you can alter as you wish!
You will need(makes 12 small, or 6 large cupcakes like above) ;
Cake Mix- 110g butter, 110g caster sugar, 2 eggs, 1tsp vanilla extract, 110g self-raising flour, 1-2 tbsp milk
Buttercream Icing- 140g butter, 280g icing sugar, 1-2 tbsp milk
Preheat your oven to 180c/ Gas 4 and line your muffin tin with paper cases. Cream your butter and sugar together in a bowl until smooth and pale. Beat in the eggs gradually and stir in the vanilla extract.
Fold in the flour, adding a little milk until the mixture is of a dropping consistency. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases. Now bake in the oven for 10-15 minute of until they are golden-brown on the top and a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Set to cool for 10 minutes, then remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack.
For your icing, beat the bitter in a large bowl until soft, then add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Now add the remaining icing sugar with one tbsp of milk, add more milk if necessary. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. If you want to make the above cake, mix a coupe of tbsp of Nutella into your icing sugar.
If you want to make the Nutella melt cake above, before icing your cakes, scoop out the top of them, as you would when making butterfly cakes and place the Nutella into the hole on the top of the cake. Then ice your cakes as you would normally.
What do you think of my Nutella Melt Cupcakes? Do you love Nutella as much as I do?
Friday, 22 March 2013
Wednesday was the first day of spring, although here in England you would think we were still in the depths of winter! Now I’m not one for wishing my life away at all, but I am one for preparing so with spring arriving that only means bikini season is up and coming! In fact June is only 10 weeks away! So if you, like me, are aiming to look fit and toned in your bikini this year then if you haven’t already started your body transformation you had better start now!Because if the above imagery is anything to go by, you are already two weeks behind everyone else being able to notice your body changing!
Thankfully many people have clocked onto the fact that we will be wanting to up our health and fitness efforts in the coming weeks and the Tone It Up girls are no exception. If you have not heard of Tone It Up before, you need to go and visit their site as they are really motivational! They offer workouts, recipes, regular motivating emails and workout schedules… all for free! This year they have partnered with Self Magazine and have started the Drop 10 Challenge.
For the Self Challenge Drop 10 Challenge all you have to do it sign up and you have access to 10 weeks of fun workouts! So this means you will become bikini ready in 10 weeks thanks to fitness videos, HIIT workouts, exercise schedules, online tools, daily motivation and tips and recipes and menus! Basically everything you could possibly need.
I have signed up for the challenge as I am moving out of home next week so I need to ensure that I keep my diet on track when I’m back picking my own meals and cooking for myself. Plus I really need to increase my toning exercises. I have lost alot of fat thanks to cardio exercise over the past three months, but need to get some definition in on my arms, stomach and bum! So hope by this challenge will help me achieve that.
So far this week I have completed a couple of strength exercises and know I am out of practice! I did the workout below with a medium sized weight which I used to lift with ease, and couldn’t move my arms properly the next day! Its a great short strength workout, that says it works all areas that you need to target, however I felt it most in my arms and bum! Give it a go!
Have you started your fitness and health regime in preparation for your bikini body? If not, are you going to start now? Do you fancy the Drop 10 Challenge, if so let me know!
Wednesday, 20 March 2013
Bottom Image from www. Baba-Ganoush.co.uk
Now that my boyfriend Matt is finally moving to live in the same town of me, we finally have the opportunity to discover some new eateries, and our first stop was Baba Ganoush. If you are from the Lake District in Cumbria you will of probably heard of this spot. If not, when you visit Kendal you have to put this on your list of places to go.
Baba Ganoush is a canteen and food shop hidden down a little side street in the market town of Kendal, Cumbria. Matt and I visited the canteen on Saturday morning at around 11 and the place was already filling up quickly. We were greeted by a smiley, friendly member of staff (always great) and told to take which ever table we fancied. Menu’s were already on the table so you could start making your choices right away. The place has various specials boards scattered around which are filled with soups, main dinners, platters and cakes.
As it was brunch time, Matt went for the Fish Finger sandwich on granary bread (all the bread used in the spot is fresh from the famous Staff of Life bakery next door) and I was rather greedy and went for a soup and hot sandwich. The food arrived very promptly and was delicious. You get plenty of filling for your money, and you can tell that the ingredients are of the highest quality and the fresh bread just makes the food even more homely.
The canteen is a rather small place with around 12-15 tables, and it was full of a variety of ages, from old dears having their tea and cake, to groups of friends having hangover breakfast and families on days out stopping for lunch. Matt and I have already planned our second visit for a hangover breakfast of pancakes with syrup, butter and bacon for me, and scrambled egg with chorizo on toast for Matt.
If you have visited the Lake District of Kendal, where are your favourite places to eat? Or in your own home town, let me know where to eat in case I make a visit!
Monday, 18 March 2013
During the Christmas sales I bought a Benefit Box that included a travel size Benefit They’re Real! Mascara. I have only recently started to use it and have only recently finished it, so it’s time for a review! Now I understand that this is the UK’s number one selling mascara and has a cult like following from beauty bloggers, so I obviously had big expectations for this little mascara.
This jet-black mascara lengthens, curls, volumises, lifts and separates lashes for a spectacular “out-to-here” look. The exclusive brush is specially designed to maximize the performance of the long-wearing, glossy formula revealing lashes you never knew you had! Staggered bristles grab close to the root, boosting length and volume beyond belief. The precision bristles on the custom-domed tip lift, define and curl even your tiniest lashes. The end result… luxurious, silky lashes that won’t smudge, clump or dry out.
You can’t argue with what the picture shows, this mascara definitely makes your eyelashes look amazing! I have even had a few people ask me if I was wearing lash inserts when I have been wearing this mascara. The above picture was taken after curling and applying three coats of the mascara. I found that the bristles were great at separating my lashes and getting to even the tiniest eyelashes. This mascara is also long lasting; I didn’t end up with black smudges under my eyes at 3 o’ clock in the afternoon like I do with some others.
However I found that this mascara ran out quite quickly, I do wear quite a lot of mascara but this seems to run out a lot quicker than others that I have bought and it may be down to the fact that the formula is a little wet. Obviously this was just a travel size but it does put me off investing in the full size at nearly £20 if it is not going to last that long! I am impressed with the results it gives so think I am going to buy the full size tube and see how long that is going to last me.
Have you tried They’re Real Mascara before? Do you agree with the rest of the population that it’s the best mascara on the market? Which others would you recommend for me to try next?
Sunday, 17 March 2013
I have been meaning to try this recipe for a little while after my best friend Sarah shared it with me, and after seeing Becky form Milk Bubble Tea bake her Creme Egg Cupcakes I had major cake envy and spent last night baking these naughty treats above.
The original recipe is for Cadbury Creme Egg Brownies and it has circulated various food blogs over the run up to Easter, but as members of my family do not like Creme Eggs my boyfriend suggested we made Cadbury Caramel Egg Brownies as well. The mixture of gooey brownies with the Caramel or creme egg filling is just divine!
You will need;
185g unsalted butter, 185g chocolate, 85g plain flour, 40g cocoa powder, 3 large eggs, 275g golden caster sugar, 3 Cadbury Creme eggs cut in half, 3 Cadbury Caramel Eggs cut in half.
Preheat your oven to 160C and grease a 20cm square baking tin. Melt the butter and chocolate together. Break your eggs into a large bowl and tip in the golden caster sugar. Beat them together for a good 3-5 minutes, or until the mixture looks thick, creamy, pale and double its original volume. Pour the cooler chocolate mixture onto the eggy mouse, and gently fold together.Sieve the cocoa power and flour onto the top of the mixture, then gently fold it in. Pour the mixture into your baking tray and cook for 15 minutes.
Take your tin out of the oven after 15 minutes and gently press the Cadbury Creme and Caramel Egg halves into the mix. Space them evenly apart and don’t push them too far in otherwise they will sink. Put the tin back into the oven and bake for another 5-10 minutes, or until when poking a skewer into the mixture it comes out clean. Leave to cool before removing from the tin and cutting into squares.
A little Easter treat for yourself and a fun way to make your chocolate brownies a bit more interesting! Do you think you will give them ago? What is your favourite Easter treat?
Friday, 15 March 2013
- Plan your meals- One night a week flick through your favourite cookbooks for meals you can make. This means you will have meals for each night, reducing the likelihood of ordering takeaways.
- Stick to your shopping list- If you are too tempted by BOGOF offers then keep your head down and go directly to where your shopping list items will be found in the store. Do not browse every aisle in the supermarket… you will just buy more!
- Wake up 15 minutes earlier- This means you will have time to sit and have breakfast each morning, instead of grabbing a coffee and muffin from Starbucks!
- Keep a food diary- You can use a Diary, such as the Moleskin Wellness Journal*, a notepad or an app on your phone. Food diaries make you more accountable of what you put in your mouth. You will be surprised at what you actually eat when first starting a food diary!
- Prepare your lunch- A couple of nights a week get out your Tupperware and make up your lunches to take to work for the next couple of days. Lunch can be a meal that if bought on the go can have a million more calories that you would think. A sandwich bought from a shop can have around 400 calories in, add your crisps and cake to this and your lunch could amount to over 700 calories! By preparing your lunch in bulk you will have no excuse as you can simply grab it from the fridge before you leave in the morning!
- Keep and water bottle with you- If you struggle to get your 2 litres everyday, keep a 1 litre/750cl bottle on your desk or in your bag and sip it throughout the day. This saves you money and reduces the likelihood of grabbing a bottle of pop.
- Plan ahead when eating out- Most places have their menus online, and large chains even have the calories count on there. So if you are watching your waistline and don’t fancy splurging then check out the menu and plan your meal ahead.
- Schedule in your workouts- Schedule in your workouts as if they were a meeting or dentist appointment. If you cancel a half an hour appointment to improve yourself then I’m sure you will feel guilty! Get your workouts written down in your diary!
- Set goals- Long term and short tem! Try aiming for so many inches lost by a wedding in the summer, or aim to take homemade lunches to work every day that week. If you have a goal you have something to concentrate your efforts on. Even better reward yourself after meeting goals… have a manicure, buy a new dress etc.
Thursday, 14 March 2013
I assume you all know already that Google Reader is no more come July, so whether you use it to read blogs currently or not I’m sure it will have a huge impact on some people’s blogging. The major worry for many bloggers is that Google Friend Connect (GFC) may also disappear as a consequence. So before we all loose touch with each other how about we connect on different platforms and adapt to new ways to catching up with our favourite blogs. I have demonstrated below the other social media platforms that I am alive and well on, if you would like to follow me. I obviously don’t want to loose contact with you so please, please, please leave your social media links in a comment below and I will follow you all… lets share the love!
Bloglovin’ has had a very busy day as bloggers scramble to add their favourite blogs asap. I have seen such a huge increase over today that my blog has become number 33 in the Up and Coming Personal blogs… made my day! It seems to be the platform of choice for many.
Twitter is actually one of my favourite platform for reading blog posts, as it is instant and I am always on it. Yes you have to click through to a persons blog and everything isn’t in one place, but I very often favour peoples tweets then go through them at a later date to check out their recent posts.
Not so much of a blog following platform but still a social media platform. I am very new to YouTube and am slowly but surely working on it, so if you fancy checking out my videos and subscribing then go ahead.
A very different and interesting platform. I could spend hours looking at all the pretty and inspirational picture on Pinterest. It is great for fitness motivation also. I really need to work on my boards but plan on doing so soon.
This is a relatively new platform for me, and rivals Bloglovin’ It allows you to follow your favourite blogs all in one place, but is a bit more magazine like than Bloglovin’, which appeals to many.
A completely new platform for me, I literally signed up a few minutes ago, so I’m unsure to what it is like, but first impressions are good. Like Hello cotton is is a bit more magazine like with different sections etc. I also allows you to add all your social media widgets which i like
This again is completely new to me, I have played around with it in the past but I find it quite hard to navigate and am a bit unsure of it. This is the platform that Google wans us to all start using but its yet to take off in the way that they had hoped.
Which one is your favourite platform for keeping in touch? Please leave your social media links in the box below and I will follow you all on all of the sites. I need to make sure that I do not loose touch with my favourite bloggers!
Sunday, 10 March 2013
Thursday, 7 March 2013
I don’t know about you but when I workout I am guilty of hammering the cardio and sometimes forgetting about strength…. which is not good! Strength exercises obviously build up your muscles and it is a fact that the more muscle you have the more fat your body will burn during the day! Now you don’t have to hammer the weights to get your strength workout in, in fact you can stay completely still and still work your body hard.
Above is a range of isometric exercises that slim you down and tone you up without moving a muscle! Isometric exercises require you to remain static and use your body's own resistance and weight to challenge your muscles. So all you have to do is hold each of the positions for 60 seconds, three to four times, will a 30 seconds rest between each.
1- Plank- Lie face down on the floor and prop yourself up on your forearms and toes. Keep your bum down and your body in a straight line. Concentrate on your abs and glutes and squeeze them as tightly as you can and hold still.
2- T-Stabilisation- Firstly get into a push-up position. Next shift your weight onto you left hand and rotate your chest to the right as the raise your right arm towards the ceiling. Keep your feet stacked. Hold for a few seconds, then try it on the other side. That’s one rep!
3- Wall Squat- Stand with your feet should width apart and back against a wall. Lower your body, slowly down the wall, until you knees are at a 90 degree angle. Push into your heels and hold still.
4- Lateral Raise- Start in a standing position with your feet shoulder width apart with your arms at your sides and a 1kg to 2.5kg dumbbell (if you have no dumbbells, use a tin of beans). Slowly raise your arms until they are in line with your shoulders and hold them there!
5- Static Squat- Start in a standing position with your feet shoulder width apart or slightly wider. Extend your hands out in front of you to keep your balance. Sit back and down like you are sitting on an imaginary chair. Keep your head facing forward as your upper body bends forward a bit. Lower down so that your form a 90 degree angle with your knees and hips, ensuring that your knees never go over your toes. Press back into your heels and hold still.
Have you tried isometric exercises before? Or do you prefer to use weights? Which one of this moves is your favourite?
Wednesday, 6 March 2013
Benetint is a product that I have lusted after for a long time, and since buying it in the Christmas Sales I have not put it down! It is one of those products that really is worth the hype in my eyes. I don’t have any other experience of lip or cheek stains, but I I don’t think I need to try another as I am in love with this one. Before this post continues into a love letter for my admiration of this product, let me review it;
“The sexiest flush you can get from a bottle, innocent yet provocative, our rose-tinted lip and cheek stain is see-through colour that endures it all… even the thralls of passion.” All you need to do it “Brush three strokes on the apples of your cheeks and blend quickly with fingertips. Apply on lips and blend. for a deeper “pop” of colour repeat.”
This product certainly does make you look flushed! I love the truly natural look it gives, upon applying this I feel like a real English Rose. It gives a look that is much more natural than any other blush product I have used before and even tops my favourite Rimmel Rose Blush Blusher!
For my cheeks it applies very easily, just three or four simple strokes with the brush then patted in with my finger tips is all I need. It’s not sticky nor oily and lasts a long time!
For my lips application is a little more difficult, it may be that I have dry lips at the moment, but the stain picks up on any dry or rough skin on your lips and stains it a little darker than the smooth areas. You have to really built up colour with it on your lips also, as I found it easily spreads over the lip line and looks a bit smudged if you apply too much at one time.
However overall I have to say this product is one of my new favourites! The bottle has barely gone down and I think it will last me another month or so. I think this product will perfect for summer days, because it gives such a natural look. It will be perfect for hot days when you don’t need any makeup but fancy a bit of colour on your lips and cheeks.
Have you every tried this product before? Did you love it as much as I do? Which Benefit product is your favourite?
Friday, 1 March 2013
- Its a healer- Green tea is packed full of goodies and antioxidants that can help fight against certain medical conditions such as;cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, high cholesterol levels, cardiovascular diseases, and infection.
- Smile- Green tea can help prevent tooth decay and bad breath. Its bacteria destroying abilities kills the bacteria that causes dental plaque.
- Weight loss- Green tea aids weight loss… fact! There have been countless studies across the world which have all found that participants who drank green tea lost more weight than those who did not. Green tea boosts that metabolism of yours, meaning you burn the fuel in your body quicker than before.
- Need a boost? Green tea enhances the energy levels in your body! so when you get to that afternoon slump, instead for reaching for a coffee and chocolate bar, try a green tea instead!
- Depression- Scientists have found that there are goodies in green tea that help fight depression. However like with all teas, those who drink it find that it is relaxing and helps fight against episodes of anxiety.
- Hydration! We all know the importance of drinking water, however I know many of you do not like the taste of it. So how about drinking a few cups of green tea? Green tea provides hydration benefit similar to water… plus it has no calories or sugar unlike some flavoured water!
- Fight the Flu!- Green tea’s high levels of antioxidants along with its Vitamin C consent help fight against infections and keeps cold and flu at bay!
- Super Skin!- Fro you beauty blogger green tea is a must! Green tea helps keep your skin clear, youthful and fresh. Many facials and face cream contain green tea extract because of its ability to keep your skin agile and help prevent the aging process! Great for your skin