28 February 2017

My Invisalign Journey | Tray 17-23

My Invisalign Journey Time sure does fly by when you're having fun, so much so that it has been far too long since I posted an update in regards to my Invisalign treatment that I am undergoing at the moment.

The last time we met I was working towards the end of my treatment, whereby from tray 17-23 I found myself somewhat on the homeward stretch. There is no denying that I have seen quite an improvement in the alignment of my teeth since I started the treatment. To this day it still amazes me how the whole process works without the need for traditional style braces that we all instantly recognise.

As I was working through the last set of trays I did start to wonder if I would need to get more aligners. My front teeth (where my main concern was) were not moving as quickly as first anticipated, therefore when it came to my last tray and the corresponding appointment my orthodontist suggested that we take up to date moulds of my teeth and send off for some more aligners. This meant that the little attachments on my teeth were removed for a while which I won't deny felt great! This all happened around Christmas time so I had to wait a few weeks for the new aligners to be made and to be sent across all the way from America. It is funny to think that somebody out there knows the layout of my teeth more than my own dentist. There was a little bit of a wait involved before they were returned to my dental practice, I think the new set of aligners arrived mid January if I remember correctly.

My Invisalign Journey

The Invisalign technology has predicted that I need another fifteen trays in order to move my stubborn front tooth into position, therefore whilst tray 23 wasn't technically the end of the process I shouldn't have to wait too much longer. 

I'll keep you posted! 

I was given the opportunity to enter a competition to win Invisalign back in February 2015 where I am delighted to say that I won. Throughout the course of my treatment I will be writing about my journey as part of the rules of the competition. My treatment is free, courtesy of Oasis Dental Care however my opinions and my shared experience of my Invisalign journey will all be that of my own.


22 February 2017

Charlotte Tilbury | Filmstar Bronze and Glow

Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow
Every so often there is a beauty product launched, where, upon first use you just know that it will become a long term favourite. One such product for me is the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow face, sculpt and highlight kit. When I first discovered Charlotte Tilbury back in 2014 I was completely taken back by the beautiful rose gold packaging, sultry looks and the sheer array of beauty on offer; the brand truly is a beauty bloggers dream. 

One of the first products I first purchased was Filmstar Bronze and Glow and to this day I have not once regretted spending those hard earned pennies. At a price of £49 this was without a doubt the most expensive product I had purchased at the time, in fact I still remember paying for it and having to pinch myself that I was making such a pricey purchase. Even now three years on, I rarely spend that amount of money on one single product, it is a big deal which needs to be justified not just by the hype surrounding it but by also how good the product is and whether you would, come the time, repurchase. 

First and foremost, the packaging of this is incredibly beautiful and elegant. It is glamorous yet still sophisticated and feminine. It also comes with a nice handy mirror too which of course is always an added bonus with any make up product. 

Filmstar Bronze and Glow contains both a bronzer and highlighter which I believe was somewhat promoted as being a product which you could use to create a contour and then of course highlight. Despite how much I adore this product I do think that it would be wrong of me to say that you can use it as contour, because in my personal opinion the bronzer is simply too warm for that, particularly on my fair skin. Warmer complexions may get away with using this as a contour, however for pale folk like myself you really do want to stick to using the bronzer in order to create a sun kissed glow to the skin. 

The bronzer is without a doubt beautiful, however for me the product really stands out when the highlighter is considered; it is simply gorgeous. The champagne golden pigments on the skin look utterly beautiful without it being too overpowering and unnatural. If I am honest if this highlight was available on its own then I would be incredibly thrilled, it really is right up there in terms of longevity, quality, pigmentation and shade. 

Both products are finely milled and are easy to apply and blend onto the skin, making this quite the perfect combination. Upon original release there was only one shade of this available which of course was rather limiting, however last year if I remember correctly there was a darker shade of this launched which of course made it more appealing to a wider range of people. I do still think that the shade range could be expanded though if I am completely honest as two ranges of light to medium and medium to dark is still not a true representation of the skin tones that are out there. 

Despite that one criticism, I still highly commend and indeed recommend this product. It is still today one of the nicest products I own and I cherish it dearly. Would I repurchase come the time? Absolutely! 

20 February 2017

Recently Recycled #10

Recently Recycled #10

As the weeks and months go by, I find myself with an increasingly overflowing box in my bedroom which contains numerous empty products ready to be photographed for the very last time. There was a time when I considered putting a stop to these posts, mostly because I felt like they were outdated and that nobody wanted to really read them, however upon reflection they do appear to be some of my more popular beauty posts, therefore, for the time being I will continue.

OGX Awapuhi Ginger Shampoo 

I first heard of OGX through Caroline Hirons where she raved about the OGX Kukui Oil Shampoo. I personally, having now tried and used that also loved it, therefore I thought I would try something else from the range. The OGX Awapuhi Ginger Shampoo unfortunately didn't impress me as much as the Kukui Oil version as I felt as though my hair wasn't as silky soft as I had expected it to be when I had used this. I also noticed that it was hard to brush through, as though it was more knotted up which was an odd experience. Whilst I would most certainly recommend the Kukui Oil version to anybody, I sadly will not be repurchasing the Awapuhi range again.

No7 Early Defence Day Cream

Having used No7 skincare in the past and really liked it I was very keen to try one of their latest releases. The Early Defence range has been designed for younger skin which isn't quite at the stage where anti-aging products are needed. Instead this has been formulated to help protect the skin by boosting the skin's own defences, helping skin to look younger for longer.

I really liked the fact that this has SPF15 and 5* UVA protection within it. Sometimes I can forget to use SPF therefore this was a factor I really appreciated. It was a light weight cream that didn't feel greasy and left my skin hydrated and brighter. To be honest I have no negatives to this moisturiser at all barring the fact that it is almost £20. For me this seems a little expensive for a Boots own brand, that being said, I cannot fault the product itself.

Bleach London Silver Shampoo

Over recent years I have tried a variety of different purple shampoos in order to tackle any unwanted brassy tones in my hair. Without a doubt one of the best ones I have found comes in the form of Bleach London's Silver Shampoo. I use this on both dry and wet hair depending on how long I have left it since I last used it as I find that using it on dry hair makes the effect of the toning more apparent. In doing this I do have to be careful not to leave it on too long or I will definitely come out of the shower with a blue tinge to my hair. That being said, I highly recommend this to anybody with blonde hair as part of their hair care maintenance, it's pretty darn good if I do say so myself.

Matrix Biolage Scalptherapie Cooling Mint Shampoo* 

Generally speaking, my scalp is very good, I rarely suffer with any form of dandruff unless I have used something which has not agreed with me. Therefore, unfortunately I cannot really comment on this product in terms of helping with that condition as I haven't had to deal with it whilst using this product. I can therefore only really comment on the qualities of how it worked for me in terms of it just being a shampoo, in which I can say that it performed really well and really was very cooling on application, in fact remarkably so. This would make a great summer shampoo that's for sure!

Clarins Tonic Bath and Shower Concentrate

This for me is a very luxurious product as I rarely spend more than £2 on shower gel as I find it very hard to justify. That being said, I cannot deny that I truly loved this product; if money were no object then I would happily purchase this for myself regularly.

MaxFactor False Lash Effect Mascara

As a beauty blogger I absolutely love trying new brands, no matter if they are low, mid or high end as you just never know what you will discover. That being said, when it comes to mascara I rarely leave the aisles of the high street as I firmly believe that the high street performs fantastically well in this area; particularly MaxFactor. Personally I must have now been through about four of the MaxFactor False Lash Effect Mascara as it works so well for me. I have quite long lashes so rarely look for anything which claims to add length, particularly because I also wear glasses 90% of the time. This adds a perfect curl and volume which is all I am really looking for.

Pixi Lash Line Ink* 

If you're looking for a liner with super pigmentation and an extra fine nib, then Pixi has the perfect one for you. Being one who is quite partial to liner I was really impressed with this offering from Pixi. It is easy to use, light weight and stands up well throughout the day, plus it is easy to remove of an evening which ticks all the boxes as far as I am concerned. The only downside is that it always appears to be out of stock every time I look for it.

Botanics Radiant Youth Eye Cream* 

This is a really nice light weight eye cream if you do not suffer from dehydration around the eyes. I first started using this during summer time which I felt was the ideal time for it. I wasn't really suffering from dehydration as this tends to happen for me as we hit the autumn and winter. During those months I like to opt for something with more of a kick, however this is a nice option for those who don't need something quite as heavy.

Clinique High Impact Mascara

At first I wasn't sure whether to include this or not as it is a tiny little sample which really does limit the experience of a product, that being said, I still was able to get a feeling for this. In a nut shell I liked this mascara quite a lot, mainly because it has a natural bristle brush which is what I tend to prefer. I found it to create a slightly more 'clumpy' look in comparison to the MaxFactor mascara above, although it wasn't anything over the top in the slightest. For me this is more of an evening mascara as opposed to every day and it is one that I would look towards purchasing for that reason alone.

Boots Essentials Cucumber Mask* 

In truth I loved this little mask, it is so affordable and widely available across the country. It is soothing on the skin and relatively easy to remove, although I would recommend using a flannel in order to get every single bit off quicker. For £1.50 you really can't go wrong if you're on a budget, whilst it won't completely detox your skin I do think that for the price it really is very good indeed.

Origins GinZing Eye Cream 

Unlike the sample of the Clinique Mascara above I find it very hard to gauge an idea on skincare when the samples are so tiny. This little sample of the Origins GinZing Eye Cream really is on the small side, it didn't really give me much in terms of the product in order to try it over a few days, let alone a few weeks. Whilst I truly loved the scent of this, I am not too sure of its capabilities in terms of hydrating the eye area or masking dark circles; the latter of which I think it has in my case failed to do. That however could be because I was frugal and had a limited amount of product to work with. In all honesty I am on the fence about this, I want to love it because on a whole I adore Origins, however I think I will have to purchase the full size in order to try it over a longer period of time.

This was an incredibly long empties post to write, next time I won't leave it so long!

Have you tried any of the above products?

*This post contains PR samples, for more please read my disclaimer. 


12 February 2017

Valentine's Day '17

Valentine's Day
Valentine's Day sure has crept up on us quickly this year, I mean I am pretty sure it was Christmas just last week...

For the majority of the time in which I have being running this blog I have been single. It is nothing to cry about, in fact for most of that time it was a time of healing and getting to know myself once again.  That being said, I have always managed to publish something on my little blog in regards to the occasion, even if I was just sharing the day with my cat. 

Whether you are a fan of Valentine's Day or not, and perhaps just think that it is some corporate shenanigan put in place to make us spend our hard earned cash, I personally can't help but kind of relish in it. Maybe it is the soft romantic in me, who knows.

Of course having being surrounded by numerous Valentine's Day posts on social media and countless cuddly toys and chocolate hearts on the high street, I thought that naturally I would put my own spin on it. Therefore, whether you're single, in a new relationship or happily married ten years down the line, here's to a few things which will hopefully make your Valentine's special this year.

Valentine's Day

In my personal opinion less really is more when preparing for a date or, indeed an evening out with friends. Whilst I personally love a nice red lipstick I can't help feel that on Valentine's it can be a little cliche, that being said I would still be incredibly torn between my favourite red or a nice effortless pink nude. Therefore, in order to meet somewhere in the middle, I will happily opt for the NARS Audacious Lipstick in the shade Anna, which is simply beautiful in its own right and took me almost six months to track down, therefore it really does deserve a bit of time in the spotlight so to speak. The formula of these lipsticks in general is pretty darn good, they're super pigmented and easy to wear and do require little maintenance.

For the nails I like to opt for something understated most of the time, therefore Essie Vanity Fairest is a perfect choice. At least three coats will be needed however as it is a very subtle shade, therefore if you don't have the time or patience you may wish to opt for something which is more opaque. Personally I have never been one to massively rate Essie polishes in general, I do tend to think that they are overpriced, however their shade range is pretty impressive.

One of my most recent purchases (thank you Boxing Day sales) was the Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris fragrance. I had really liked this since it first launched last year, however at the time I really couldn't justify the purchase. It is a super light fragrance with notes of pear, patchouli and white musk making it in my opinion quite sweet, although it isn't sickly in the slightest. Generally speaking, I do tend to lean away from sweet scents, often reaching for more floral based fragrances however I was pleasantly surprised by this and naturally it remained on my mind long after I first tried it. It also goes without saying that visually it is a beautifully presented fragrance, which of course would make a beautiful gift for that special someone or yourself this Valentine's Day.

Of course pretty underwear is a given at any time of the year for making us feel good, let alone Valentine's Day. Just this week I managed to stumble across a couple of super pretty designs from Peacocks, which I will honest is not a place I think to try for clothes at all, let alone nice underwear. I will make a point of popping in next time I am in town just to see what they have in store; you just never know do you.

I hope that whatever you are up to this Valentine's Day that you have a lovely day, even if you are curled up on the sofa watching your favourite chick flick. After all, all of the above is all well and good but sometimes it is nice to get nice and cosy in your pyjamas with a glass of fizz.

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