Friday, 28 November 2014

Marks and Spencer Christmas Event

This past Wednesday, I had the pleasure of being invited along to The Mall Cribbs Causeway's Marks and Spencer store for their first Christmas Blogger Event. They had transformed their Espresso bar into a 'Winter Wonderland' showcasing some of their best pieces for this season, along with lots of lovely nibbles, a beautiful Christmas tree and nail bar!
They had some beautiful rails out, full of this seasons must haves and faves! I spotted a few items which I will definitely be popping in to look at more for Christmas parties including gorgeous skirts, blouses and a coat which I may just have my eye on now! Their Christmas jumpers were also probably the best I have seen this year, along with their hats and scarves which I will definitely be donning this Christmas season! 
I had already been eyeing up the Marks and Spencer Christmas gift sets this year, especially the beauty ones! The boxes for most of their sets is a beautiful rose gold colour, perfect as a bit of a luxury present! They have some brilliant gifts as well that are more non-beauty prezzies that are well worth checking out!
Marks and Spencer also have some really great brands in the beauty department including Ren and Diego Dalla Palma; brands which I don't really see around much and am very excited to try out! I was also lucky enough to be given a few mini goodies from these brands which I most definitely will be trying out and letting you know how I get on with them! 

Unfortunately, I had to pop off slightly early, but I would really like to thank the great team that organised this lovely event for inviting me! I'll definitely be looking forward to if they have another one next year!

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Tips to Help Overcome Creative Block

For just a little while, I've had a huge creative block in all aspects of my life. I've been wanting to do so many different things and had ideas and just can't seem to get any ideas out of my head. I've worried that my blog posts have been lacking and don't want to put something up that's not to the best of my ability, so I thought I'd try and find some ways of unlocking that inspiration. These are just a few things I've found to help a bit...
1. Taking a day out and time for yourself
Managing my down time is a huge difficulty for me. I always seem to be busy and then when I do have time to relax I can't seem to just stop. My mind whirls on and I have to go and do something (last night I actually found myself organising my room at 9 o'clock because I couldn't shut off!). I was talking about this with someone and they mentioned that maybe I should try and do 'nothing', just not anything important but have a bit of a chill out and recharge the batteries and I think it's definitely starting to help!

2. Going out and looking
Whether this is going out to a coffee shop, sitting with a hot chocolate and reading a book or popping out and doing a bit of window shopping, it's always great to go out and see if you can grab inspiration from anything! I actually found going to B&Q the other day helped funny enough! My Dad popped in to get some bits and I did a bit of a detour round the home and Christmas sections and found so much that I not only want for my room but also gave me some ideas for future blog posts!

3. Go back to the basics
I think sometimes we all get a bit caught up with everything and forget why we were doing things in the first place. We forget why we enjoy it and instead too quickly those things we once loved become a chore. Sometimes its good to just take a step back and take the time to really enjoy something and remember that we can't always do everything at once. Don't be afraid to try something new either, if you don't try you'll never know!

Do you ever get a bit of a creative block? What do you like to do to get past it?

Friday, 21 November 2014

Pick of the Christmas Gift Sets!

I love that this time of year you can walk into any Boots store or department store and be surrounded by lovely little Christmas presents and gift sets. I seem to spend hours in Boots (and I actually did the other day!) going up and down the gift aisles working out who I can buy for and wanting them all myself. So I thought I'd pop together a little list of some brands collections/sets that are great gifts this Christmas time!

Soap and Glory
Soap and Glory is probably one of my favourite skincare/beauty brands ever! I don't think I've ever bought anything from them I don't like and their Christmas sets definitely don't disappoint! They're really reasonable and there's something there for everyone (they even do men's sets!) They do sets for both their make up range and skincare, I've got my eye on the eye shadow palette! Definitely worth checking out even if you just want to try some of the products for yourself!

Ted Baker
Ted Baker are another brand that stock in the drugstore and again are really reasonable. The boxes/packaging for their gifts is so beautiful and quite luxurious if you're looking for something a little more special but without the hefty price tag! They have some really nice stocking fillers as well this year, sets of nail polishes etc and a new bright colour scheme for some of their designs which I absolutely love!

Benefit
The sets from Benefit are always so lovely and always in such pretty packaging. I especially love the sets this year and think they're always such great value for money. The miniatures they put in them last a really long time considering they're not even have the size of the normal and I think it's a really great way of trying out some new bits! I love their idea of a little stocking you fill with miniatures as well!

The Body Shop
Every year I find myself getting at least one person something from the Body Shop for Christmas! They have some really great sets, all at different price ranges and sizes, whether you just want a little something to make up a present or a big set. This year they brought out the Glazed Apple range and I honestly love it! Imagine Appletiser or Apple Tango but in a body butter! (So so good!)

What are your favourite Christmas Gift Sets?

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Fave things for a Winter's Evening!

It's got to that point in the year now where I no longer want to go outside unless I have to and would much rather spend the majority of my time tucked up under a blanket watching films! I don't ever really get to do this, but I do have a few quick things that I love to do on a cold winter's evening...
1. Hot Chocolate
I'm still striving to perfect my own making of a hot chocolate but no matter what, this is a must in my books for a cold evening. Sometimes I think there's nothing better than sitting down with a warm drink, snuggled under a blanket watching a good film!

2. Fairy Lights and Candles
I have fairy lights up all year no matter what, but find I put them on a lot more in winter with the evenings getting darker earlier. I just think fairy lights or lighting candles helps make the room feel all lovely and cosy when it's freezing outside!

3. Magazines, Face Masks and Cosy Blankets
Occasionally, I find myself stopping everything early on an evening, putting my onesie on and taking a bit of time out. This can be reading a magazine or a book (I'm just starting the last in the series of the Maze Runner and love it!) or just snuggling under a blanket watching I'm a Celeb.

What do you like to do on Winter Evening's?

Friday, 14 November 2014

'No Make Up' Make Up Base

This week for some reason I had a bit of an allergic reaction to something and haven't been able to wear any make up etc around my eyes (except mascara which I pretty much could never leave the house without!) I've been having a lot of these days lately though, trying not to wear too much make up and actually think I prefer it sometimes.
(Excuse the well used bottles, for some reason the writing always rubs off within a day, does anyone else find this?)

I've not been wearing foundation day to day but quite like the lighter, less coverage base that I've been wearing. Of course, it doesn't last all day but with a little bit of topping up of powder half way through I don't really mind that my skin and scars are showing through a bit, actually I'm kind of trying to embrace them! I also have combination skin so do get a fairly shiny T-Zone but have found wearing less sometimes means I don't become so much of a sheeny mess within an hour!

MAC Studio Moisture Tint in 'Medium Plus' - I don't wear this every day but just the days where my skin has a few more dry patches or needs a little bit of a pep up. It's not much coverage but keeps the skin hydrated and does help to even things out a bit!

Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in 'Warm Medium' - A staple for so many beauty bloggers and definitely one for me! I've used this for years and just find that it gives really good coverage and blends really nicely. I only wish they did more colour options!

Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer in 'Soft Beige' - Not being able to wear much around my eyes I've found this is the lightest and softest thing to use under my eyes that didn't irritate them so much. I definitely think this is one of the best high street concealers for under eyes you can get!

MAC Studio Fix Powder in 'NW25' - I've only been using this the past couple of weeks but really love the extra coverage it gives. It's a really light texture that doesn't feel at all heavy on the skin and just keeps things in place a little bit longer. You can either use it as a lightly tinted powder or build it up a bit for extra coverage.

Have you been loving any base products lately?

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Review - Maybelline Color Drama Lipstick

As mentioned in my Autumn Beauty Wishlist I have been searching for ages to find the perfect berry lipstick. I'm not entirely sure if this is what I'm looking for but it's definitely close. The Kiko Ace of Diamonds lipstick in 27 'Refined Burgundy' is top of my list at the moment but I'm yet to try it out in real life. So, when I spotted this new reveal by Maybelline and the perfect colour, I just couldn't resist picking one up! This is the Maybelline Color Drama Lipstick in 'Keep it Classy'.
It the tube you don't see the colour so well, but when on the lips this is a great deep berry that has a hint of purple . It's definitely a statement colour but so effortless to apply that it can be worn everyday. It's a really nice formula, light on the lips and no scent as such so really easy to wear. You can use it as a stain patting it onto the lips or straight from the crayon to create a much darker look. The pigment is definitely one of the best I've tried and doesn't have to be built up too much to create maximum effect! Being a pointed 'crayon' shape, you also don't necessarily need a liner as you can easily draw around the shape of the lips and fill in.

Staying power isn't the best as such, I wore it all day on the weekend stopping for lunch, drinks etc and did have to reapply after every time, however I think building up and blotting layers before first application or maybe applying a similar liner all over the lips in the morning will definitely help it stay and stop just the outline of the lipstick remaining after a sip of a drink.

I really love this lipstick as a whole though and will definitely be going and picking it up in a few more colours!

Have you tried these yet? What lipstick are you loving at the moment?


Friday, 7 November 2014

Bonfire Night 2014

Funny enough, Bonfire night 2013 was one of my first posts over here on ihopeso! Bonfire night is probably one of my favourite nights of the year. I'm not a fan of Halloween at all (sorry to anyone who is), I don't mind anyone else enjoying it and will fully embrace handing out sweets etc but don't really like dressing up and really don't like masks so stay away as much as possible! The one thing I do like however, is that Halloween brings about all the fireworks running up to the 5th!

I don't really know what it is, or why, but fireworks are just something that make me feel happy (as stupid as that sounds!). It's not just that they are pretty and make you go 'wow', I think there is just something almost magical about fireworks!
I always go to my local firework display down the road from me and sit in the evenings watching them through the window. However, one of my favourite things is having fireworks at home! For as long as I can remember, our family has had a tradition of having burgers and soup, getting all wrapped up, inviting the neighbours round and lighting fireworks in our garden.

video

I hope this is something that we do for years to come too! I know it will definitely be something I keep up in my older years!

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Autumn Beauty Menu

As with most people, when the season changes so does my make up routine. I love all the autumnal colours, all the deep golds, purples, burgandys and berries and love experimenting with the season. So I thought I'd put together a little 'make up and beauty menu' of a few bits I love wearing for Autumn!

  • Maybelline Colour Tattoo in 'On and On Bronze' - Great for just a sweep of colour over the lids, as a primer or built up as a base for a gold smokey eye look!
  • Sleek Contour Kit in 'Light' - Even though Summer's over I still love a good bronze to keep the tan going a bit longer. I love using this as an eye shadow too!
  • Maybelline Colour Drama Lip Crayon in ' Keep it Classy' - I absolutely love berry lips and this lip pencil is so great! It's so easy to apply and doesn't feel at all drying on the lips, I'm definitely going to be picking up more colours!
  • Benefit Rockateur Blush - This is probably one of my favourite blushes of all time, I think it's perfect for this time of year though! Gone are the corals and pinks of Summer, instead this has a slightly darker tone and gives the cheeks a warm natural flush
  • Max factor Colour Elixir lipstick in 'Burnt Caramel' - This is a great one to wear everyday, it's a bit deeper than a 'your lips but better' colour so great for this season to just add a slight colour!
  • Deep Red, Plum and Nude Nail Polish - I love darker nail colours a lot of the time and these are great for Autumn. If not then light greys and nudes are my definite go to
  • Urban Decay Naked Palette - I could probably use this quite easily all year round. The only difference this season is the colours, at the moment I'm loving using the darker colours and really building them up for a slightly more smokey look or sheering them for a more natural look

  • What products are you loving this Autumn?