Wednesday, 20 September 2017

The Method, Stockbridge - Haeckels Made of Margate

The Method in Stockbridge, Edinburgh is a gorgeous lifestyle, beauty and therapy store (there's an online shop too so if you don't live near enough you can still get a shopping fix!) which sell a beautiful range of beauty products (some of which I've only seen online before), home and lifestyle items and they also offer a range of treatments which you can see HERE

I was super excited as they are a stockist of Haeckels Made of Margate which has been on my wishlist like forever! I picked up two items on my first visit Haeckels Incense Cones (£16) and Meraki Green Seaweed Soap (£8).

I chose Bog Myrtle cones as they were the scent which appealed to me most! It thrives in harsh and hard to reach conditions - think the top of a steep coastal path or on coastline cliffs. It's great to use as a midge repellent and the aroma is said to be alike of cloves. It's spicy, smokey with a hint of floral.

To use: light the end of the cone letting it burn for 15 seconds before blowing the ember until it's red hot. Place "in the heart of your home in either a hallway or landing to allow the fragrant smoke to disperse". The lid or a pretty saucer is ideal to burn the cones. Each one will burn for about 15 minutes and the scent will last 2-4 hours in a medium sized room.

There are other scents available which you can see HERE. What's your favourite product from the brand?

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box: September - Revive

I reviewed the Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box* for August. It's theme was Self Care - see my review HERE. As I thought the box was so good I quickly signed up! The box costs £21 plus £3.95 p&p. Some of the brands included in the box also offer money off codes which is always welcome!

September's theme is Revive and here's what's inside:

Eeek! Again this month there are three new to me brands!

First up is the fabulous looking Alexa Sky Botanicals Cactus Fruit Eye Serum (10ml - £23) which helps with dark circles, puffiness and fine lines. I'm looking forward to trying this! (expect a review in a few weeks).

From JUN-i there is a Hair Oil (£14.99) which is exclusive to Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box and can be used as a deep hair treatment overnight. Again, can't wait to try!

The final new to me brand this month is from Lilian Jones and is a Lavender Shampoo Bar which is free from SLS and SLES. It's worth £3.

I'm a huge fan of Blue Labelle and nestled inside the box is their Light & Balancing Facial Oil (30ml - £16.50) which I've tried before. See my review HERE.

I just love Awake Organics. Their Aura Clean Deodorant travel size (£3.99) is one of the best I've used. See my review HERE. This one's getting popped in my travel bag.

The final item in the box is from Nathalie Bond Organics and is their Organic Rose & Patchouli Bath Salts (60ml - £7.99) which I have also tried before (I found a little nearly empty jar lurking in the back of the cupboard which I received in a beauty box a while ago). It's really beautiful and I'm going to enjoy re-visiting.

It's a fabulous box again this month. Did you pick one up? What are your thoughts on the contents?

Monday, 18 September 2017

Giveaway #2 - Love Lula: Walden Natural Perfumes

As you'll know I'm celebrating my blog's 6th birthday this month and have 6 fantastic giveaways for my readers (you can see my #1 giveaway HERE) For my second giveaway I've got a 15ml purse spray of Walden Natural Perfume in best selling and award winning 'A Little Star Dust' to giveaway to one of my UK readers. It's worth £18 and has notes of Ylang Ylang, Iris and Jasmine with creamy Amyris and Tonka Bean. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Love Lula Beauty Box: September 2017

I picked my September Love Lula Beauty Box* up at the Post Office yesterday morning. It's an absolutely fantastic one this month and worth £50! Sign up for your monthly box HERE.


I just love everything! Inside is:

Walden Natural Perfume Gift Set (which is worth £30!) - inside you will find the whole Walden range in 5ml bottles. This is a great way to test all the scents out. See my reviews HEREHERE and HERE. The gift set is such a good addition to this month's box!

From Esse Probiotic Skincare we have a 10ml travel/try-me size of their fabulous Gel Cleanser. See my review HERE. This is getting popped in my travel bag.

I simply adore Balm Balm's Beauty Balm (60ml - £16.50) and was delighted to see a full size pot this month. I recently reviewed it - see HERE. So pleased to now have a full size pot!

From JOIK there is a mouthwatering white chocolate bath truffle. I've used these before and they are a delight! See my review HERE

The final item is a sachet sample set from Kimberly Sayer which is the perfect try me set or for holidays (these will also be going in my travel bag) - Light Cleansing Lotion, Gentle Facial Cleanser, Restore Anti-Ageing Cream and Tangerine & Calendula Healing Light Night Cream.

Such an amazing box this month. What are your thoughts to the contents?

*sent to me as part of the Love Lula Accredited Blogger Program. My thoughts are genuine and my post contains affiliate links.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Scienea Superfruit Serum Review & Giveaway #1

I've been testing out Scienea's Superfruit Serum (20ml - £30)* and I can honestly say it's fantastic. The range is new and from industry experts Amphora Aromatics.

The serum (which comes boxed) is suitable for all skin types. It smoothes out wrinkles, plumping, nourishing, healing blemishes and minimising age spots. Two years of research and development (along with love and care) went into formulating and creating the serum which contains skin loving natural ingredients.

"Clinically proven to enhance skin's density and firmness and to visibly reduce the wrinkled appearance of skin, including 'crows feet'. Starts working from the first application to help fight the signs of ageing and restore a youthful complexion".

To use: cleanse and tone the face before applying a few drops of serum with your fingertips and massage onto the skin. 

Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Squalene, Sclerocarya Birrea (Marula) Seed Oil, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil , Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Linum Usitatissimum Seed Oil, Camelina Sativa (Camelina) Seed Oil, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Seed Oil, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin) Seed Oil, Borago officinalis (Starflower) Seed Oil, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil , Fragaria Ananassa (Strawberry) Seed Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride , Opuntia Ficus Indica (Prickly Pear) Seed Oil, Spilanthes Acmella (Spilanthes) Flower Extract, Aspalathus Linearis (Green Rooibos) Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Black Tea) Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Rosa Damascena (Rose) Flower Oil , Foeniculum Vulgare (Fennel) Fruit Oil, Backhousia Citriodora (Lemon Myrtle) Peel Oil, Cymbopogon Martinii (Palmarosa) Oil , Tocopherol, Limonene, Linalool, Geraniol, Citral, Citronellol

It's a really beautiful serum which smells delicious and is stuffed full of good things for the skin. Scienea have very kindly collaborated to offer one of my readers their own Superfruit Serum* - all you need to do follow the rafflecopter instructions below. Good luck! (this is a worldwide giveaway)

Oh and this is a giveaway for my blog's 6th birthday this month! So expect a few lovely collaborations upcoming!


Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Zing Organics: Zing Lover's Subscription Club

As you'll know I'm a huge Zing Organics fan.  

See my recent reviews HERE and HERE. I recently blogged about their newish monthly subscription box - see HERE. I'd fancied signing up last month but with holidays just didn't get round to it and so I couldn't resist September's box!

Sign up and pay £29.50 a month including p&p. Each box is worth £50 or more. See HERE for more info.

September's theme is is Woods and includes a treasure from the forest floor (I got these cute little fir cones on their own little twig).

The Eco Marine Algae Facial Cleansing Masque (25g - £24.50) is simply exquisite and smells of the sea. I've only used it once but already I love it. It deeply nourishes the skin leaving it plumped, radiant and smooth. Expect a full review soon! This one's a keeper!

Eastern Promise Solid Cologne in Spiritual Frankincense & Sandalwood (5g - £24.50) this unisex scent is made with 100% Certified Organic ingredients and has a balsamic/woody scent. I've tried the solid scents before (French Bourbon, Geranium & May Chang) and loved it.

A Limited Collection Miniature Amber Glass Candle in "Forest" which is Piercing Siberian Fig with Bourbon Geranium. Burn time is 10 hours. Looking forward to burning this!

What an amazing box of goodies which also come with a gift card (as if you could bear to gift it!)  Is this subscription something you'd sign up for? If you do, you won't be disappointed!

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Love Lula: Jane Scrivner Skin Drink Frankincense Hydrating Mist & Rose Gold Ultimate Facial Serum

I've recently been testing out Jane Scrivner's fabulous Nourishing Cleanser Luxury Cleansing Balm* (expect a review of this soon). As I'd been very impressed with how effective and luxurious it was I was keen to try more from the range.

I've totally fallen for the gorgeous Skin Drink Frankincense Hydrating Mist (100ml - £19*) and Rose Gold Ultimate Facial Serum (30ml - £33)*.

Jane has spent 24 years working in skincare and therapy, learning, training and instructing and has travelled the world while doing so. When she came home to Stratford-upon-Avon she decided to create her own skincare line.

Skin Drink Frankincense Hydrating Mist* is just fantastic and one of the best toning mists I've used. It tones, hydrates, regenerates, freshens, is restorative and can be used for fixing make up too.

The blend is mixed and bottled by hand and contains Organic High Altitude Lavender hydrosol, Organic French Apothecary Rose hydrosol and Frankincense essential oil.

To use: shake before use, spray 2-3 pumps over skin (avoiding eyes) before massaging the liquid in.

Rose Gold Ultimate Facial Serum* smells deeply of Bulgarian Rose Otto. It really is incredible and a real treat for the skin and senses. It's best suited to sensitive and mature skin types. It contains Jojoba oil which helps to promote the production of collagen and elastin. The serum balances, tones, soothes, nourishes and can help with broken capilliaries.

To use: apply a single pump to fingertips before massaging onto the face and neck. 

What's your favourite Jane Scrivner product?

*sent to me as part of the Love Lula Accredited Blogger Program (I added £2 to make this selection). All thoughts are genuine and my post contains 2 affiliate links.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Natura Siberica Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing

Nature's Dream, is a leading supplier of health, wellbeing and beauty products to the UK and Irish retail markets and Natura Siberica is one of their finds (I've used their Oblepikha Hand Cream before).

The formulations are based on traditional remedies from the ancient Siberian tribes with wild harvested ingredients sourced on the unspoilt landscapes. The brand works with local tribes which brings positive changes to their lives.

I've been testing out the fabulous Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing (100ml - £12)* which isn't as scary as it looks!  It's also an award winner having won the Beauty Challenger Awards at Beyond Beauty 2014 in Paris.

The soap contains highly absorbent activated charcoal which draws out impurities, binds dirt, bacteria and excess oils to the surface and leaves the skin feeling super clean, smooth and flawless. It's enriched with powerful and unique wild harvested berries and herbs formulated to a traditional ancient recipe.

The soap rejuvenates, regenerates, softens, tones and nourishes the skin while firming and detoxifying - it really does it all!

To use: wet the sponge and apply the soap to dry skin, avoiding the eyes and lips. Massage and then rinse with warm water. Use once or twice a week.

My thoughts?

I love how clean my skin feels after use. The soap is very gentle, slightly foaming and leaves the skin feeling comfortable and clean but never tight. I'll definitely be adding this as a long-term addition to my skincare regime.

You can pick yours up at selected M&S Stores from today.


Sunday, 10 September 2017

YOU Beauty Box: The CEW Awards Edit

I was sad to learn that September is the last month of YBB (after four years). They are joining forces with Latest in Beauty. Sad times. I did love my little £6.95 box! I was happy I'd re-joined this month as the choices for September were fabby.

I picked:

The Beauty Kitchen Seahorse Plankton 5 Minute Miracle Mask (60ml and worth £14.99!). It smells beautiful and I'm looking forward to trying it. Expect a review soon!

My second pick was Yes To Coconut Ultra Moisture Conditioner for Dry Hair (280ml - £5.99).

The extras: Weleda Jardin de Vie Grenade perfume sample vial and Aussie 3 minute miracle reconstructor deep treatment sachet.

What did you pick?

Saturday, 9 September 2017

New In: Micheline Arcier Aromatherapie Harmonie Dream Drops

Launching today are the fabulous Harmonie Dream Drops* from Micheline Arcier Aromatherapie. I'm a huge fan of the brand - see my reviews (Skincare and Bodycare).

The Harmonie Dream Drops (£19 - 15ml boxed)* are the latest edition to the award winning calming blend (also available in the same scent is a bath oil, body oil, bath & shower crystals and sleep therapy gift set). The drops are best used when you need to relax and unwind. Use before bed to ensure a restful sleep. 

To use: massage one or two drops onto pulse point and chest, inhaling deeply. Anxiety and tension are eased and you are left feeling perfectly relaxed.

The blend is Camomile, Petitgrain and Ylang Ylang and like every Micheline Arcier product exquisite. Camomile helps calm and relax, Petitgrain soothes and revives while Ylang Ylang soothes the cares of the day away and gives the blend and exotic edge.

It's perfect to have beside your bed, in your handbag or even desk drawer! And an ideal gift or stocking filler for a sleep deprived friend.

As with all Micheline Arcier Aromatherapie products it's been made with love and care and is the perfect companion to a good night's sleep.


Friday, 8 September 2017

Herbfarmacy Organic September Starter Box

Although not a newcomer to green and organic beauty and also Herbfarmacy I couldn't resist their starter box for #OrganicSeptember. It's stuffed full of gorgeous products (some I've tried before and some new ones!) It's an absolute bargain - costing only £16 plus P&P. It's the perfect box for someone just starting out on their green and organic journey.

The products are nestled inside a plain reusable box (which I'll definitely find a use for!). 

WOW! Inside you'll find:

Nourish Face Cream 20ml (£10) a fragrance free moisturiser which is suitable for all skin types. This feels rich and nourishing and will be great to use coming into Autumn (it's a new try for me!)

Mallow Beauty Balm 20ml (£13.50) a deeply nourishing balm which I already adore! See my review HERE.

Rose & Echinacea Toner 25ml (£7) which is gently astringent, refreshing and cooling. I'm looking forward to trying this (another new try).

Lip Conditioner 4.5ml (£5) with Marshmallow and Vanilla. I've had the pleasure of trying this nourishing lip balm before.

Also inside are a selection of samples (which cost 75p each - see them HERE):

Skin Rescue Balm which helps dry and itchy skin, Enriching Hand Cream which protects and restores (I've tried this before) and Refining Cleanser which cleans and smooths the skin.

There is a voucher included for 15% off your next online purchase.

It's a fantastic box. Did you pick one up?

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Fighting Fifty Travel Essentials Beauty Bag 2017

I've never bought one of Tracey's (Fighting Fifty) Limited Edition Beauty Bags before. Nicola flagged it up on her Facebook Group (Beauty Q&A Insider Tips) and at a total bargainous £20 including UK P&P (Travel Essentials Beauty Bag 2017) just had to be mine! (it's now sold out). The contents are worth over £100.


It's absolutely jam packed!  Here's what's inside (fuller reviews will follow). The products are inside a PVC Airport friendly bag and I received a digital leaflet explaining the products as well as prior to purchase watching the YouTube video (

Alpha-H Essential Cleansing Balm 30ml (this is a new product and has a gorgeous rosy scent)

BetterYou Magnesium Oil Goodnight Spray 15ml - which I'm excited to try!

Dermovia Lace Your Face Calming Chamomile Facial Mask - I've tried one of these masks before and loved it.

Exuviance Bionic Body Polish Masque 10g (a brand I've not heard of)

Goldfaden MD Brightening Elixir 7ml (brightening...yes please)

Kiss the Moon Love Night Cream for Hands (sample size) - see my review HERE.

Lash Perfect Lift Off Eye Makeup Remover 15ml - a decent size, again looking forward to trying.

Merci Handy Hand Cleansing Gel 30ml - happy to have these in my desk drawer.

NeoStra Retinol+NAG Complex 2ml (not heard of this brand)

REN Oat & Bay Conditioning Shampoo 50ml - a decent size from a great brand.

REN Pro Vitamin Conditioner 50ml - again, great travel size.

Tribitor 3-Phase Carbohydrate Blocker 5 x 4.5g sachets (not sure how I feel about these)

Ultrasun Face Anti-Ageing Sun Protection SPF50+ 25ml - a brand I'm happy to use. This is a great travel/handbag size.

Did you pick a beauty bag up?

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Sukin Purifying Body Scrub

I've been aware of Australian brand, Sukin for a while but up to now haven't tried any of their products. I'm also currently testing out their fabulous Oil Balancing Purifying Gel Cleanser with Charcoal* - expect a review soon!

The brand was launch in Melbourne in 2007 and is an affordable and effective range. The products are free from parabens, SLS, synthetic colours and fragrances, propylene glycol, petrochemicals, EDTA and Triethanolamine.

I've been testing out their Purifying Body Scrub (200ml - £9.95)* and I can honestly say it's one of my favourite body scrubs. It contains micro particles of bamboo extracts and ground walnut shells which give the creamy scrub a definitely "scrubbiness". Rosehip, Jojoba and Sesame oils deeply nourish while Aloe Vera and Chamomile soothe and refreshes the skin.

To use: massage onto damp skin in the shower twice a week.

Have you used this scrub? What's your favourite Sukin product?


Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Love Lula: Balm Balm Beauty Balm

I do love a trial size and this little one from Balm Balm is fantastic. I picked it up as a sample with purchase (£1.50) but full size (£16.50 - 60ml with muslin cloth) is a bargain.

It's suitable for all skin type and has a multitude of uses. The balm has a delicious lavender herbal scent (it also contains rosemary, frankincense, tea tree, rose geranium & clary sage essential oils).

Calming, balancing, nurturing and nourishing the balm is rich in antioxidants, vitamins, seed oils and healing herbal extracts.

To use: as a cleansing balm, a moisturiser, a mask, lip balm, elbow & heel balm and as a body scrub (adding a bit of sugar or salt).

It really is a fantastic product which would be great for travelling. I know I'll be buying full size soon! What's your favourite Balm Balm product?

Monday, 4 September 2017

Nourish Skin Renew Cleanser

I've been testing out the Skin Renew Cleanser 100ml* (£20) by Nourish which is absolutely fantastic! It's stuffed full of good things for the skin including Omega rich Argan, Jojoba and Borage oils and Kale extract.

The formulation which has a nice floral-rosy scent heals, restores, protects, cleans, smoothes, firms, repairs, regenerates and helps to stimulate collagen production. 

To use: apply to wet or dry skin, massaging until all make up and daily grime has been removed. Rinse with warm water (my preferred method is with a warmed damp muslin cloth). The skin is left feeling clean and very comfortable.

I'm a huge fan of the brand and you can see my previous reviews:

Have you tried Skin Renew Cleanser?


Sunday, 3 September 2017

Latest in Beauty: Beauty Guru

It's been a while since I've had a Latest in Beauty Box - I unsubscribed for a couple of months over summer - they'll always draw me back however! I picked up some for me and some for the present drawer (as the sizes are great stocking fillers).

I'm very impressed with the Puressentiel Rest & Relax Air Spray 75ml which helps you to relax and have a good night's sleep. It's made with a blend of 12 essential oil which soothe and comfort.

I can never resist Omorovicza and I can't wait to try their new Midnight Radiance Mask 15ml (50ml costs £90 so this is a great try-me).

I used to be a huge Elemis fan and I'm looking forward to trying their Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm 20g again.

I love Aurelia Probiotic Skincare's Aromatic Brighten & Repair Hand Cream and this 7ml size is great for the handbag! See my review HERE.

I'm also a fan of Resultime Hydrating Cream 15ml which deeply nourishes the skin. It's a great size for travel too!

I'm always looking for the perfect product to smooth out lip lines so picked up Monu Skin Lip & Eye Active Lift 7ml which improves fine lines and wrinkles while brightening and rejuvenating.

My final picks are: from Ultrasun there is Glimmer Sun Lotion SPF20 25ml, from Origins their Plantscription Anti-Ageing Power Serum 15ml and from The White Company their Seychelles Hand & Nail Cream 30ml.

Latest in Beauty also threw in a couple of Philosophy samples as an extra - Amazing Grace EdT 1.5ml and their Purity Made Simple 3-in-1 Cleanser 6ml.

Pick up your box HERE (chose from 3 - £9/month, 6 - £15/month or 9 - £18/month).

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Big Green Tree: Pamper Me Spa Kit

Big Green Tree have recently launched a selection of gifts (ideal dare I say it for a stocking filler or small gift) which are packaged in a re-usable aluminium tin. They very kindly sent me their Pamper Me Spa Kit* (£11.99) to review. The range includes Gardeners Hand Therapy Kit, Excellent Beard Care Kit and Romantic Night In Set. See them HERE

Inside you'll find:

30ml Detox Face Mask with Moroccan Lava Clay (Rhassoul) and natural plant minerals which deeply cleanse and nourish the skin. I'm looking forward to testing it out. A review will follow.

The fig scented duo of Fresh Fig Tea Light and Fresh Fig Heart Shaped Bath Melt make for a super relaxing bath. Look how pretty that little melt is!

I've been really impressed with how lovely the products are and I also like that everything is "free from".

Are you tempted by any of the kits? Have you used anything from Big Green Tree before?


Friday, 1 September 2017

Ihana Skincare Beri-Activ Cleansing Gel & Hydrating Day Cream

I've been testing out two products (a full size and a sample size)* from Ihana Skincare which is exclusive to Only Naturals. The range is hand crafted in the UK, certified natural and uses bioactive ingredients wild harvested in the Arctic Tundra and Boreal forest of Northern Scandinavia.

The Beri-Activ Cleansing Gel* (50ml - £20) is a gel to milk formulation which deeply cleanses the skin, unclogging pores and easily removing dirt and daily grime. Organic Apricot Kernel and Sweet Almond oils draw out impurities, anti-inflammatory Heather Flower extract soothes, Meadowsweet extract tones and Ihana's signature Beri-Activ Antioxidant complex (which contains Cloudberry, Cranberry, Bilberry, Lingonberry, Raspberry, Blackcurrant and Sea Buckthorn) helps with skin brightening, conditioning, anti-aging, UV-B and UV-C protection, anti-inflammatory, elasticity and cell regeneration.

To use:  Apply the gel to dry skin, massaging onto the skin before adding a small amount of water which turns the cleanser into a silky milk. Wash off with warm water or use a muslin cloth for best results.

I'm a huge fan of sample sizes which are great to try before you buy or for holidays. Ihana Skincare offer a selection of these which you can see HERE. I've been testing out the Beri-Active Hydrating Day Cream* (5ml - £5) which is a rich but easily absorbed cream which is formulated with Beri-Activ Antioxidant complex, Organic Cranberry Fruit Water, Organic Rosewater, Organic Camellia Seed and Argan oils which nourish, soothe and hydrate the skin. Organic Rosehip Seed extract helps with cell renewal and Hyaluronic Acid firms and plumps. The cream has a beautiful scent. It's fragranced with Organic Rose Otto and Rosewood essential oils. 

To use: apply to your face and neck after cleansing.

I've been really impressed with both of these products. I'd say the day cream just slightly has the edge! Have you used any Ihana Skincare products before? If so, what are your favourites?

*complimentary - my post contains two affiliate links

Thursday, 31 August 2017

August Books

Here's what I've been reading in August:

England Expects by Sara Sheridan (A Mirabelle Bevan Mystery #3) - I'm a huge, huge fan of the series (and had the real pleasure of hearing Sara speak last week - I also picked up books 5 and 6) (happy face). In this adventure which is set in the heatwave of 1953 Mirabelle and Vesta investigate the murder of a racing journalist and a cleaning woman. Are the murders connected? Their investigations lead them to derelict Brighton Pavillion, Cambridge college and the mysterious underworld of Brighton's freemasonry. A great plot with lead characters I've grown to love.

British Bulldog by Sara Sheridan (A Mirabelle Bevan Mystery #4) which sees Mirabelle on the trail of an RAF pilot who went missing during the war and never came home. Her investigation takes her to Paris where she discovers an espionage operation. She also finds out things about her "perfect" lover Jack which surprise her and in turn she feels she can finally take him down from his pedestal that she's put him on, get on with her life and maybe find romance with Alan McGregor. Full of twists and turns and un-put-downable. Now can't wait to get stuck into books #5 and #6!

What she Lost by Susan Elliot Wright* (thanks very much to Susan for a copy of her book). Eleanor and her mother have never really bonded and as such have a difficult relationship. Marjorie has Alzheimer's and finds she needs to have Eleanor near to help her so Eleanor uproots her life and moves back home. Also a strong character in the book is neighbour, Peggy who has always been there for both Marjorie and Eleanor. 

Her mother tells her "there's something I have to tell you" but she just can't remember and with her memory fading will Eleanor find out the truth about what happened that day..or not. The storylines cover dementia, teenage pregnancy, mental health, families, love, heartbreak and friendship. A really moving read which I recommend.

Jo Malone - My Story - WOW what a read! A fascinating memoir of this inspirational lady's life. I just couldn't put it down. We learn about young Jo, the family business and all she does to make it successful, heartbreak when she leaves to set up on her own, the early years as a facialist, making products for select clients and being inspired to create her own range of perfumes and Jo Malone, the company being born. 

There are harrowing sections when Jo describes going through cancer treatments but her son and husband keep her strong and she comes out the other side. Selling the company to Estee Lauder and her frustrations about not being able to work in the industry for 5 years and then the creation of the amazing Jo Loves. It's an absolutely fabulous read and I highly recommend it. 

Greatest Hits by Laura Barnett** Singer/Songwriter Cass Wheeler is making a greatest hits album and taking a trip down memory lane - she's picking the sixteen tracks which have defined her life.

She's understandably a bit scared as she's had her fair share of heartbreak and sadness as well as intense happiness and love. Each chapter captures a period in her life and includes song lyrics. I was totally engrossed and found it a fascinating and interesting read. Highly recommend.

Robbing the Dead by Tana Collins which is the first in a new series featuring DCI Jim Carruthers. The story is set in a small Scottish University town.  

A young man who seems to know too much is brutally murdered. A lecturer at the University with a link to Northern Ireland and an interest in Welsh Nationalism was supposed to die when his car exploded but due to fate he wasn't there at the time he was expected to be. Was it a terrorist attack? And if so, who is behind it... 

The cases seem to be linked in some way and it's up to DCI Jim Carruthers and DS Andrea Fletcher along with terror expert McGee, Jim's old enemy to find out why.. An interesting, fast paced and enjoyable read. Looking forward to seeing the characters of Jim and Andie developing in book #2.

Cartes Postales from Greece by Victoria Hislop Postcards start arriving at Ellie's flat addressed to someone she doesn't know. They are always signed with an initial - A. She starts to fall in love with Greece and she looks forward to receiving the "cartes postales". After a short while they cease. She decides she must go and see this country for herself.

On the morning she leaves a notebook arrives which tells the mysterious "A's" story. We learn of his travels all over Greece and the stories he hears from the locals both real and mythical. While in Greece Ellie finds peace and realises she can live a different sort of life. An enjoyable read.

What have you been reading this month?

*copy from the author
**copy from netgalley

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

JoJo Co: Rocks & Roses Soy Wax Candle

I recently came across JoJo Co. candles at Stockbridge Market in Edinburgh (on the 1st Sunday of the month) and at Leith Market (on the last Saturday of the month) and of course I couldn't resist! I love new to me candle brands and especially ones from Scottish small businesses. The candles are simply but prettily packaged. I chose Rocks & Roses (£12 - 45hrs burn time) as it was the scent which appealed to me most (I now want a diffuser!)

Jo's husband bought them a candle kit to experiment with. Through trial and error they perfected the candles and gave them to friends to test out - they all loved them and Jo started selling them at markets. The candles (and reed diffusers) are now available to buy in several stockists which you can see on their Facebook page.

The scent is really beautiful it's rosey and floral and the candle burns well. Have you tried a Jo Jo Co Candle?