Goodbye Cheese, if Only for a Little While…

going dairy free for my skin


So this week started with me saying goodbye to an old friend for a little while – we’ve had some good times, there was that fondue in the Swiss mountain town, the ice creams by the sea side, custard slices with my Nan and sour-cream smothered burritos and cocktails with friends. Yup, I’ve gone dairy free in an attempt to get the craziness of my face under control. It’s probably too soon to tell whether it’s really helping, but I have my suspicions. By the end of the week the small patch of eczema / dermatitis under my eye was much much better, and although the patch under my mouth remained, my lips were in good enough condition on Sunday to wear lipstick for the first time since the beginning of  February. I then thought I’d try a little stilton to see what happened, and my lips were definitely flaky and sore by the end of the day. However I’ve also been going down with a cold, so that could be more the reason. In any case I think the experiment is worth continuing – especially as my referral to a specialist isn’t until the end of June. I’m not sure that dairy is the actual cause (I’ve eaten it without any real problems most of my life after all) if it’s at least an irritant that I can avoid to get things under control a little then I’m willing to give it up for a bit. Even though most of my favourite foods include it. Ack. To cheer me up, Dan made the most immense vegan brownies at the weekend, with soy ice cream and I have to say I really couldn’t tell the difference, they were delicious. I think it’s my beloved cheese that will be my downfall! [Read more…]

How To : Double Eye Liner

The recent makeup looks on the catwalk have become increasingly graphic – lots of hard, angular lines and some fairly crazy eye liner looks! This simple, double eye liner look is a really easy way to make a bit of a statement with your eye makeup, but still keep it really wearable. The nice thing with this look is that you can make it more edgy by choosing brighter colours (think neon pink teamed with purple, or lime green and black) or, as I have here, tone it down a bit with softer colours or metallics – I’ve gone for gold and brown, but copper and grey would also look fabulous, just have a play with the colour combinations and see what you like! My basic rule of thumb though is to keep the darker/stronger colour next to your lash line (although you can totally do it the other way round if you’re looking for something a little more ‘fashion forward’!) [Read more…]

Lush: Emotional Brilliance Event at Kingfisher Redditch

Last week I was invited along to an Emotional Brilliance event at the Kingfisher Centre in Redditch by the lovely folks at Lush.

I’d been meaning to give this brand new, hand made, vegan friendly cosmetic range a go for a while as I’d heard great things about how intensely pigmented it is – and as you know, I’m a BIG fan of strong colours where makeup is concerned.

So off I toddled to the event, (and met up with lovely bloggers Gemma from Buttons Blog, Amy from PYT and Sunny from Wardrobe Mag) where expert celebrity MUA Karla Powell was demonstrating how to work with the makeup, and the lovely Lush ladies were offering Emotional Brilliance readings.

As someone who does Colours Analysis, where the colours you wear are linked to your colouring (eyes, skin tone, hair colour etc.) I found the idea of a different system, where the colours are linked to your emotions really interesting. I’m a big believer that wearing colour can boost the way you feel (it’s why I’m such a big fan of red lips!).

The idea is that each colour is linked to, and named after, an emotion. You are presented with a spinning wheel of coloured dots (to which they added plenty of dry ice at this event to add to the drama!). You look away from the wheel for a few seconds, and look back as it comes to a stop and pick out the first 3 colours that jump out to you. (Not necessarily your favourites or ones that you think would suit you!) These 3 colours are then taken out and put in the centre, and the meaning is explained depending on the order that you picked them out.

I have to say it was a bit of a spooky experience! 3 colours really did immediately jump out at me when I looked back at the wheel, and although 1 of them I would probably have worn anyway, 2 were definitely different to what I already have in my makeup collection.

I picked:

1. Feeling Secure – my strength – feeling unstoppable because I am sure in what I’m setting out to do, just be careful and show empathy for those around me feeling less secure
2. Power – my subconscious – I need to take my own power in my hands and make decisions, but without being forceful
3. Fantasy – my talent – creative opportunities are opening up for me, and my imagination will take me where I want to go

I won’t go into too much personal detail, so let’s just say that each of these really resonated with me!

But what about the colours? Well, they were gorgeous. Feeling secure is an electric purple, designed to be worn on the eyes, Power is a red with a warm gold shimmer, designed to be worn on the lips, and Fantasy is a sparkling gold, also designed to be worn on the eyes. I’ll go into more detail on each in a full review on the blog very soon, as I couldn’t help but treat myself to 2 of them, and Lush very kindly gifted me the third!

So, in short, if you have the chance to experience Emotional Brilliance at your local Lush store I highly recommend it.

Friday Five – Red Lips

I went along to a fab event at Lush last night in Redditch, and fell in love with a brand new lip colour – Power (without force). It’s a stunning slightly metallic red lip paint, and I couldn’t help but treat myself.

It got me thinking about how I naturally gravitate towards red lip colours – it really is a power colour, and if I’m feeling a bit tired, down or unconfident a bright red lip soon perks me up – no wonder I’ve been known to wear red lips to the swimming pool on holiday to give me a bit more confidence in my bikini!

So, here are 5 of my favourite red lip products.

[Read more…]

Friday Five – Beauty Product Lust

This week’s Friday Five is a direct result of one of my new year resolutions. You see, one of the benefits of working in style and being a blogger is that I get to be very lucky and get given lots of lovely beauty products. Add on top of this that the reason that I work in style and blog about beauty is that I love these products and you’ll find that I tend to buy quite a lot on top of what I get given – I  tend to be a bit of a beauty/ makeup shopping magpie! This has resulted in a rather large pink box in my bathroom that’s getting a little full of products – a rather lovely situation to be in, but also a bit of a ridiculous one as it is full of stuff that I genuinely want to use as anything I don’t want or don’t like is usually swiftly donated to friends and family.

So, this year I resolved to not buy a beauty product until I have used everything in my big pink box. So, no new moisturiser until I have absolutely no moisturiser in my possession, no pennies to be spent on lovely smelly bubble bath until not a bubble exists in my stash.

As you can imagine, magpie that I am, this means that all I can think about is buying beauty products! But I must be strong, for the sake of my bank balance! So, as an ac of catharsis, here are 5 things I’m dreaming about at the moment.

1. Eve Lom Moisture Mask – £65 – My skin’s being a bit uncooperative at the moment – it’s doing that ‘I can’t decide if I’m going to be dry or spotty so I’m going to do both!’ thing again despite me taking very good care of it in January. I got to try this mask at  Harvey Nichols last year, and it just left my skin feeling and looking so fresh I’m now lusting after adding it to my weekly routine (even if it is a little pricey!)

2. Lush Ginger Lotion – £12.95Really, really no need for this one as I’m perfectly happy with the body lotion that I’m using (I’ll be talking about it in an upcoming youtube video – yes, I’m getting back on the vlogging wagon this year!) but I smelt this and it’s utterly amazing and ginger is one of my favourite things ever. Magpie instinct kicked in bigtime!

3. Superdrug Conditioning Cuticle Oil Pen – £2.99 – The folks at Vogue are raving about this little miracle buy giving them the best. nails. ever. Even though it’s only £2.99 I already have a Nails Inc cuticle oil pen which is doing the job, so I really don’t need this, but can’t help my silly cravings to give it a go!

4. Laura Mercier Eau Gourmande in Creme Brulee – £41.50 – I love gourmande fragrances, and this scent is a sugary, spicy, caramel, vanilla delight. I can’t help but have a sniff every time I pass through the Selfridges beauty hall, but have promised myself I won’t buy any until I finish my current bottle of perfume.

5. Clarisonic  Plus – £179 – See no.1 above re. my spotty skin woes at the moment. People rave about the clarisonic sonic skin cleansing system all over the internet and I’ve wanted one for ages, but I can’t really come to terms with spending this much on what is essentially a vibrating brush. Also the plus has an attachment to use on your body, so I have, in my mind, convinced myself that this will be the end to my backne.