Friday, 17 April 2015

Birthday Treat

We've been away celebrating our 10th Wedding Anniversary which is why I've been quiet on the blog this week (more about that later!) I recently celebrated my birthday and hubby treated me to a meal at Castle Terrace Restaurant and a surprise overnight stay at The Glasshouse, both of which were fabulous!

We arrived at the hotel for a 3pm check-in and spent some time chilling out and enjoying the amazing roof terrace and gardens with a beer or two.

The toiletries were by Aromatherapy Associates (big squeal!) which went down well.

We headed up to Castle Terrace Restaurant for dinner - we've been once before - see my review HERE.

Here are some of the dishes we enjoyed. I also loved the birthday message!

See Castle Terrace Restaurant website HERE
See The Glasshouse website HERE

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Mini Haul

Here are some of the things I've been buying lately:

I couldn't resist the new John Master's Organics Body Scrub from Naturisimo. It's one of the best scrubby body scrubs I've used but....I'm disappointed with the scent. To me it smells nothing of raspberry and orange.  If you pick it up choose the one I picked for my friend Lemon & Lime (as she has assured me it smells lovely and zesty).  I think the one I chose comes under the heading of a disappointing product.

I signed myself back up to LJ's Natural Solutions Beauty Box. See my post about it here.

Bloom Remedies have an amazing offer on right now. You can buy a maximum of 2 of their 30ml trial size moisturisers for a fiver each including P&P! See the selection here. These are great sizes to see if they suit your skin - I chose Daily Detox Organic Skincare Moisturiser which is suitable for problem, oily and combination skin types and Daily Revive Organic Skincare Moisturiser for dry and mature skin types.  Full reviews to follow!

And yes...the blogger made me buy it! I read Hephzibah's amazing review of Lippy Girl's Rosie Posie Vegan Lipstick and I knew I had to have it! See her review HERE - as you will see it's a gorgeous shade and is also highly pigmented and feels lovely on the lips. The colour lasts and lasts too! I also picked up a couple of samples too.

What have you been buying lately?

Monday, 13 April 2015

Fragrance Foundation 2015 Awards: The Library of Fragrance

Baby Powder (Female) and Thunderstorm (Male) from The Library of Fragrance are both up for awards in the 'People's Choice' category of the Fragrance Foundation 2015 Awards. You can vote HERE. If you vote you will be entered into a competition to win a goodie bag of fragrance products worth £250! Hurry though voting closes tomorrow 14th April.

I was sent two samples (both 15ml worth £15) to review. These are The Library of Fragrance best-sellers. The perfumes have no artificial colours, binders, emulsifiers and are phthalates and paraben free.  The alcohol used in the scents is naturally fermented from corn.

Baby Powder smells just like Johnson's Baby Powder and is a comforting and soothing scent.  It makes you feel cosseted and cared for whereas Thunderstorm is earthy and captures the electricity and raindrops of a summer storm!

400 Boots stores sell 28 best-selling scents and 600 stores sell 7 top sellers. You can buy 101 scent direct from The Library of Fragrance.

Have you tried any colognes from The Library of Fragrance? What's your favourites?

*PR samples

Sunday, 12 April 2015

A Birthday Surprise

We came back from a birthday meal and a surprise overnight stay yesterday (more to follow on that!) to a surprise birthday package from my dear friend Nardine (@Miss_Nardine).

She chose me some wonderful pressies - I'm a huge fan of pretty stationery, am intrigued by esthechoc and looking forward to testing it out.  I love the photo of us taken last year when we met in London for the first time and the little lavender bag is super cute. Thanks so much Nardine!

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Myonpure Online Shopping & a Discount Code!

Myonpure is a fabulous online shop which stocks a range of natural and organic skincare including some of my favourite brands - Organic Surge, Green & Spring and Urban Veda - see the full list HERE.

Founder, Amanda O'Neill was only 33 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She changed her life in many ways and one of them was changing the beauty products she used to natural, organic and paraben free.

The "finest, natural, organic, paraben free and ethically sourced" products are chosen and the ranges available to buy include products for babies, children, men, women and home.

P&P is free with orders over £15. Under £15 a postal charge of £2.99 applies. I think it will be easy to spend £15!

Sandra10 will give you 10% off any purchases
check out the online shop HERE

I was sent some gorgeous products to review - Organic Surge Sugared Almond Shower Gel* (£4.75 for 250ml), Green & Spring Repair and Restore Hand Wash* (£14.50 for 300ml) and Green & Spring Relaxing Candle Set* (£18 for 3 x 37g).

The products came beautifully packaged with a hand written tag (which I thought was a lovely touch).

The first thing I noticed was the scent of the candles - it is truly heavenly! This little set would make a great gift too. The candle set* is presented in cute little glass pots and are made from 100% natural waxes with essential oils of Lavender, Rosemary and Geranium which calms, relaxes and soothes. They are free from paraffin, petrochemicals, palm waxes and the wicks are made from natural fibres.  Perfect for a DIY Home Spa Day.

I'm totally in love with Green & Spring's gorgeous hand wash*. It revitalises and cleans the hands and is scented with Lavender, Chamomile, Bergamot, Lemon Myrtle and Orange. Absolutely fantastic value too - and it's one I will definitely be purchasing when I've finished this one.

I'm already a huge Organic Surge fan and was keen to try the much raved about Sugared Almond Shower Gel*.  It doesn't disappoint with a light sweet almond scent it cleans, softens and hydates the skin.

See the online store HERE
Follow on Twitter @MyonPure

*PR samples

Friday, 10 April 2015

A Birthday Swap

It's now become tradition that my good pal Julie and I do a birthday (and Christmas) swap. You can see what she gave me last year at my birthday here. We met on Monday and spent a lovely day having lunch at The Murrayfield Hotel, sitting outside enjoying the sunshine, each others company, a few bottles of wine and lots of unwrapping (naughty for me considering today's the day!) 

She totally spoiled me - too much to put in one photo and I don't think I'll need to buy any beauty again this year (or ever haha).

Abahna Travel set in Frangipani & Orange Blossom which is my favourite Abahna scent (shower gel, body lotion, soap, hand cream, mini mirror and wash bag) and a hand wash in the same scent. I've not had these in my stash for ages. The travel kit is so handy for weekends away and holidays. See my review of the minis here.

My favourite Shay & Blue fragrance Salt Carmel. All I can say is WOW. Thanks so much Julie. See my review here.

By Terry Rose Balm Tinted Lip Glosses - these are gorgeous. Looking forward to trying them out! I've tried the pale pink so far. Pretty glossy shade with a hint of rose. Love!  Shu Uemura Eyelash Curlers - I've wanted to try these cult beauties for ages!  Love Korres body products and tinted lip balms so looking forward to trying their mascara.

Nip+Fab Multi-Fix Oil - I've not tried much from this brand so looking forward to trying. Two Cowshed bath & shower gels in Moody Cow & Lazy Cow. Huge fan of the brand and always looking for nice shower gels - thanks Julie!

Park's Aromatherapy Candle with Frangipani, Rose, Freesia and Lily. This smells gorgeous and I'm looking forward to burning it.

A lovely quirky tin tray and coaster. Made me smile!

Lots of beautiful stationery items - these always make my heart sing!  As well as a colouring in book - bliss!

Yummy edibles - The Marshmallow Lady Prosecco & Rose Petals Mallows (these are my all time favourites), a half bottle of the gin I discovered I loved after trying it in the Ginvent Advent Calendar, Tarquins Handcrafted Cornish Gin, Belgian Chocolate Praline Egglets, Reeses Peanut Butter Cups (nom), a lovely little chocolate bunny, eggs & Rose & Violet Creams!

She also gave me this!

I'll take you through the contents in another post!  I was well and truly spoiled! Thanks so much once again Julie!

Thursday, 9 April 2015

LJ's Natural Solutions: The Beauty Box

I first purchased one of Lisa's Beauty Boxes way back in September.  I recently tried her amazing Organic Purity Rose Body Oil (review) (£14.95 for 50ml) and decided I couldn't live without it so decided to sign back up to the Beauty Box choosing x 2 of the body oil. My third item this month is the Limited Edition Spring Gift Bag (full price - £7.95).

What happens is you pay full price for 2 items and the 3rd and cheapest is half price. You also receive a free sample size every month.  P&P is £2.95. I've decided to get my box every 2 months.  See more details HERE.

Inside the Spring Gift Bag is:
OMG Serum 3g
Cucumber & Watermelon Eye Serum 3g (this is amazing!)
Organic Deep Cleansing Balm 8g (review)
Balancing Organic Moisturiser 8g

These are perfect sizes to take on holiday (should last a week) or for try me. My free sample was the very lovely Organic Handbag Handlotion (5g) which I reviewed here.

What's your favourite LJ's Natural Solutions product?

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

SW Basics: Exfoliant

I'm a huge fan of SW Basics especially because their products are no frills, super effective and made with 5 ingredients or less. They are certified organic and use fair trade ingredients which are sourced from local family farms. Buy in the UK at a beautiful world.

The exfoliant (118ml - £18) is made with organic oats, organic Maine sea salt and ground almonds.  Blend a small amount with water or apply to wet hands before massaging over the skin. Leave on 1-2 minutes before rinsing.

The scrub gets deep into the pores ridding the skin of impurities and leaving it looking radiant and fresh.

Have you tried it?  What's your favourite SW Basics product?

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Our Tiny Bees: Soy & British Beeswax Lemongrass Candle

Our Tiny Bees has been on my radar for quite some time now. I finally took the plunge and bought their Soy & British Beeswax Lemongrass Candle (£11.95 - 260ml). The candle is packaged in a tin (made in the UK) which makes it great for taking away on holiday or using outside on a balmy summer evening.

It has delicious and uplifting lemongrass scent which lightly scents your room or surroundings. The candles are made in a candle workshop in the heart of Yorkshire and are made with British Beeswax, sourced from local beekeepers. Jon, the founder also keeps bees.  Soy wax helps the candles to burn cleaner, longer and brighter.

Other candle scents available: Vanilla, Grapefruit, Rose, Lavender, Rosemary, Patchouli and Citrus.

Our Tiny Bees also make a range of skincare & bath goodies.  The Bath Melt is next on my list!

Have you used any products from Our Tiny Bees before? What do you recommend?

Monday, 6 April 2015

de Mamiel Spring Facial Oil

I've been using the very fabulous de Mamiel Spring Facial Oil (£67 for 20ml) for the last week or so and I can quite honestly say it's one of the nicest and most indulgent facial oils I've ever used (I know for sure I'll be purchasing these oils every season).

Annee's facial oils are hand blended and the ingredients chosen just weeks before the start of the season to ensure the most therapeutic blend is chosen. Seasons come with specific rhythms and each oil is blended to work in synergy with nature.  They also change each year depending which Chinese New Year has been entered.

The Spring Facial Oil helps to focus new beginnings after winter and is made with Grapefruit, Juniper, Geranium and Calendula which balance, brighten, soothe and purify the skin. Supportive flower essences of blackberry, dandelion, luffa and tansy propel us forward, motivate and help us to leave winter behind.

Use AM and PM after cleansing to "renew skin & spirit". Place 4 drops onto palms, press together to warm and cup around the nose and mouth breathing deeply. Count to 3 before exhaling on a count of 4. This is a lovely ritual which I've easily added to my skincare routine. Massage the oil upwards over the face and neck until the oil is absorbed and "the skin begins to sing".

As well as smelling gorgeous - it's really uplifting, rejuvenating and the oil helps to address the skin's needs in Spring. It "dusts away the cobwebs of winter" leaving the skin glowy, radiant and nourished. You can also treat yourself to the whole collection - Spring, Summer, Autumn & Winter see more details HERE - you will receive your oil in time for the relevant solstice or equinox.

See my reviews of Rosey Lip Balm HERE and Salvation Body Oil HERE. What's your favourite de Mamiel product?

Saturday, 4 April 2015

The Organic Protein Company: Organic Whey Protein

Daniel from The Organic Protein Company recently contacted me to ask if I'd like to try their Organic Whey Protein (£22 for 400g)*.

The package arrived quickly and inside was a hand written note (nice touch) and a serving scoop made from recycled plastic milk bottles.

Until recently the only source of Organic Whey Protein was in the United States. Daniel found an organic dairy group based in Northern Germany who produce their own version. They use a gentle low temperature filtration process which in turn gives a higher quality product. Each stage of the process is recorded from field to filter.

The cows which produce the milk for the organic whey have year round access to pastures and graze on grass and clover. In the winter months they eat hay and organic grain which helps to maintain high levels of protein and Omega 3 in their milk.

One tree is planted for every pack and 25p is given to CIWF for every pack sold - to date £1,000 has been raised! (I love companies which give something back) and packaging can be recycled.  Suitable for Vegetarians, is Gluten, Soy and GM free.

The Organic Whey Protein is ideal for increasing protein intake in your diet and great for a pre or post exercise boost.

I tried it with water and as a smoothie with summer berries. I have to say I preferred it in the smoothie.  It has a light as air texture and creamy fruity taste and is delicious!

You can also mix with milk, vegetable smoothies, make protein bars, add to soups and milkshakes.  See more ideas HERE.

See the website HERE.
Follow on Twitter @organic_protein

*sent for review

Friday, 3 April 2015

Organic Surge Extra Care Ultra-Light Oil Control Lotion

I've been testing out Organic Surge's Ultra-Light Oil Control Lotion (£18.50 - 50ml)*. I think it's the perfect moisturiser for Spring and Summer as it is light in texture and absorbs instantly.

Suitable for most skin types it helps to regulate oil production and prevent shine (which is great for my oily t-zone!).  It rejuvenates and nourishes the skin leaving it soft, radiant and moisturised. Oh and it smells gorgeous too!

Argan Leaf extract nourishes, Damask Rose Oil calms, hydrates and moisturises and Safflower Oil softens and smoothes.

See my reviews of other products in the Extra Care range - Replenishing Facial Oil*Brightening Hot Cloth Cleanserand Nourishing Rose Moisturiser & Hydrating Eye Cream*.

What's your favourite Organic Surge product?

*PR samples

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Lovely Letters with Victoria Faye

Lovely Letters is a snail-mail exchange set up by Esther at Local Adventurer and Jordan at Beer Time with Wagner. What happens is you are paired up with another blogger from all around the world. You have a chat and then send them a parcel along with a letter! (stay under $7) Pairings are done after the 6th of the month. Sign up HERE.

Lovely Letters Snail Mail Exchange

I was paired up with Victoria from Victoria Faye for my first Lovely Letter swap. Do check out her blog and design work - she is super talented.  Follow her on Twitter @thevictoriafaye.

I received an absolutely exquisite package. I'm actually blown away with how gorgeous it is! Victoria made me my own personalised Journal - WOW how amazing is that!

She also included a pack of two pens and a super pretty magnetic pad.  Thanks so so much Victoria I love everything you sent me! It's all so beautiful!

Have you taken part in a Lovely Letter swap before?