Sunday, September 19, 2010

Urban Decay Update 18/09/2010





Alice in Wonderland Book of Shadows


Book of Shadows Vol 3


Single shadows:

Yeyo (matt)





Green Goddess


Mary Jane



Hi-Fi 24/7 Set
- containing Zero, Mildew, Flipside, and 1999 24/7 Glide On Eye pencils (travel sized) and Distortion Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner.

24/7 Super Stash
- containing 9 mini sized 24/7 eyeliners in Zero, Stash, Corrupt, Eldorado, Graffiti, Binge, Ransom, Rockstar and Oil Slick.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Boots €7.50 No.7/Ruby & Millie vouchers August/September 2010

Just wanted to let you all know that Boots are doing their €7.50 off vouchers for No.7/Ruby & Millie if you spend over €7.50 on anything in store at the moment. I had to pick up moisturiser and a few other pieces today so I divided the purchase into two lots and got two vouchers which then went on two No. 7 makeup brushes. I don't need them at the moment but it's no harm to have FREE good quality makeup brushes stored away for in future!

Decanting Lush (hair products)

Since I have converted to using all Lush products on my hair it obviously makes sense that I buy the large bottles of products in order to save money. An example being that the 250ml Rehab shampoo costs €14.40... And the 500ml bottle costs €23.40. Thats a saving of €5.40 which I consider to be quite a good amount. (For example in Lush that would buy me a small sized 9 to 5 cleanser, or a good chunk of many of the soaps, or any of the bath ballistics, bath melts, or most of the bubble bars... You get the picture!) There are similar savings to be made when it comes to Coolaulin (240ml: €10.95 490ml: €18.15 Saving: €3.75) and American Cream (250ml: €11.95 500ml: €19.85 Saving: €4.05) conditioners too.

The problem here is that the bottles are MASSIVE! They're also known for not being the sturdiest so one fall in the shower could see you losing all your savings down the drain very quickly! Here is where I came up with the idea of keeping the bottles from the first purchase of the item (because no one is going to buy a 500ml bottle straight off without trying it first to see it works!) and decanting the larger bottles of product into them. In my case my smaller bottle was the medium sized one as the 100ml bottles wouldn't go too far in my thick head of hair!!

Empty 240g bottle and full 490g bottle of Coolaulin

Step 1: Make sure your smaller bottle is completely clean and dried out. I'm a bit paranoid that old product will contaminate the newer product!

Smaller bottle partially filled with product decanted from larger bottle.

Step 2: Fill the smaller bottle 1/2 or 2/3 way full. In the case of Rehab I find this really helps as it gives some space to shake up the product to remix it when it separates.

Rehab, American Cream and Coolaulin - all decanted to smaller bottles from the larger one and ready for use!

Step 3: Enjoy your Lush product in a manageable size... And don't forget to treat yourself with the savings!! :)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Awesome pressie! :)

I have an awesome sister!! :) Recently Little Friday went on a trip to Germany and came back with a really unexpected AWESOME present for me!! An Alice In Wonderland Urban Decay book of shadows! You know the one NO ONE has been able to get and EVERYONE has been raving about?? Well yeah, THAT one!! Don't you wish she was your sister?? :P

Urban Decay have outdone themselves this time with the packaging. The palette itself has space for the primer potion to fit, rather than it just being contained in the box as with many of the other palettes.

The products themselves are contained in a pull-out drawer but the piece de resistence is the fact that the lid of the palette opens to display a beautiful popup scene from Alice in Wonderland. Even though this was released to coincide with the Tim Burton release it contains a more traditional Alice in Wonderland scene.

The colours in this palette have all been given names relevant to the story... Even though there aren't any new colours!

  • Underland (Flash) is a bright, cool-toned medium purple with an icy lilac shimmer. It’s soft, smooth, and richly pigmented.
  • Alice (Painkiller) is a bright aqua-blue with an icy sheen. Like Underland, it’s smooth, silky soft, and has lots of pigment to it.
  • Oraculum (Baked) is a warmed-up copper with a softer copper sheen. Smooth, soft, well-pigmented.
  • Queen (Last Call) is a reddened eggplant with a burgundy edge. It has a frost-like sheen, but it is smooth and pigmented.
  • Chessur (Chopper) is a cooler-toned, not nearly as bright, copper shade. It has the same soft texture as the majority of Urban Decay’s shadows, but it has silverish glitter particles that may contribute to some fall out in practice.
  • White Rabbit (Polyester Bride) is a gently yellowed white (though still, very white) with a white-gold sheen. Like Chessur, it also has some glitter to it. (I'm not a big fan of the fall out from some of the glitter shadows!)
  • Wonderland (Maui Wowie) is a tarnished gold, maybe an antique gold, but not quite so dark. It has a golden bronze sheen to it. It’s pigmented and smooth, but it also has a few glitter particles (though this is one of the more manageable glitter-based shades in the bunch).
  • Curiouser (Grifter) is a lightened fuchsia-purple with icy purple sheen. It also has silverish glitter particles in it, which may lead to fall out. This is one of the lesser pigmented shades, though it still has decent color pay off.
  • Muchness (X) is a peachy-melon with a gold sheen. It almost has a little mauve to it, in certain lighting. This has a frosty finish, but it doesn’t have the glitter, so it’s smooth and easier to work with. I've wanted this one for ages!!
  • Mushroom (Mushroom) is a taupe brown with kind of a silvery sheen and shimmer.
  • Midnight Tea Party (Midnight Cowboy Rides Again) is a flushed champagne with silver/gold glitter particles. This is quite possibly my least favorite Urban Decay eyeshadow because the glitter fall out is pretty insane. It’s a shame, because the color itself is pretty.  
  • Vorapal (S&M) is a neutral, slightly cooled down silver with a brighter silver sheen. Smooth and pigmented. Love this colour and had actually treated myself to it as I wear quite a bit of grey/silver.
  • Absolem (Homegrown) is a grassy green with a golden shimmered sheen. Very pigmented and true-to-color.
  • Drink Me, Eat Me (Sin) is a pinked champagne with a bright, frosty sheen. It’s like a pinker version of Midnight Tea Party–and sans all the glittery fall out. Love this!!!
  • Mad Hatter (Twice Baked) is a lightly glittered dark brown with warm undertones.Personally I am a fan of the Baked/Half baked/Twice baked browns.
  • Jabberwocky (Oil Slick) is a dark black base with icy blue and silver glitter. While not as prone to fall out as Midnight Tea Party, it’s still one of the glittery shades that may lead to some fall out while applying it.

The colours are beautifully vivid as always and there is a great variety of shimmer and glitter shadows. This is the type of palette that is ideal to bring away with you as it contains a mix of colours and textures that are suited to day or night wear. It contains the fabulous Sin eyeshadow which I personally find great as a neutral day colour.

In addition to the SIXTEEN eyeshadows you also get two eyeliners in Zero (black) and Flipside (turquoise).

These eyeliners last amazingly well. After about a minutes drying time they are smudge proof and the colours are great. I highly recommend them.

The final item in this set is a miniature primer potion for eyeshadow. This is always highly recommended in beauty blogs and really makes the colours 'pop' and gives them much extended staying power.

All in all I am thrilled with this palette. It is so versatile and just a beautiful piece. Thanks sis!! :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I'm back!! 26/08/2010

Unfortunately due to the move I haven't been doing anything on this blog recently. The good new, however, is that I have some posts lined up to do so I have no excuse not to get back into it!!

Did ye miss me? ;)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lush haul 29/07/2010

I get the keys to my new place tomorrow and have until Saturday evening to move out of where I live now... So of course it's logical that I spent my evening at a party in my local Lush!!

Here is what I bought: American Cream conditioner, You Snap the Whip body butter, It Started With A Kiss lip tint (new), Aqua Marina and Angels on Bare Skin cleansers, BB Seaweed face mask and a small Volcano tub (which is great if you remember my previous rant!).

And as I spent (well) over €25 I got a free goody bag!!

Basically the contents of a Honey Farm gift set!

Friday, July 16, 2010


Okay, bit of a random post but thanks to the wonder that is the iPhone and the blogpress app I am currently blogging from the chair in the hairdressers... Anything to avoid OK/Hello or similar mags!

I have a confession to make. I *hate* going to the hairdressers and getting my hair done! The thoughts of it makes me want to cry (especially on days like today when I've had no sleep and a tough day in work!) and I genuinely don't understand what people enjoy about it! I hate all the pulling at my hair and by the end I feel like all they are doing is causing a combined burning/stabbing sensation on my scalp! Add that to the water in my ears and dye all over my hairline (and elsewhere) and I am just not a happy camper!

(Sidenote: the hairdresser by fluke just managed to lodge the end of her comb in the back of my earring and almost pulled it out! Maybe I just have bad luck??)

Unfortunately due to genetics I had to start dying my hair at a young age. It's not pleasant to be very obviously going grey at 17! Prior to that I had never dyed my hair having had notions that I was going to be one of these people who aged gracefully and embraced my fading colour... I just hadn't expected to be faced with embracing it quite so soon! I have really thick hair that grows at an exponential rate as if to spite me so monthly I am faced with the arduous trip to the hairdressers for an average of three hours. Many's the hairdresser who has asked "what would you like me to do with it today?" has been greeted with the response "Just shave it all off" and yet it's still there! They all laugh the 'joke' off and I face the reality that Sinead O'Connor is the only Irishwoman who can pull that look off! Long hair suits me apparently (and I do love when the offending roots are hidden and it's straightened) so for now I persevere! Just for now though!!

So what about you? Do you enjoy it? Do you dread it? Is there something else that you are supposed to enjoy/dread that you go against the norm on when it comes to beauty?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Review: Rimmel Fruities

(Excuse the dodgy cuticles! Hadn't planned to do my nails but it just sort of happened! )

I popped into Boots today as I got paid and fancied treating myself. I've been wanting a pale yellow nail varnish for ages so that was the plan... And that's what I got - but with a twist!! It's scented!! How cute is that?? It's the Rimmel Fruities lasting finish in shade 058 Lemon Drop. I also picked up the pink (025 Strawberry Fizz) while I was at it.

The coverage is pretty good but I did 3 thin coats over a base just to be sure. Not so sure about the smell of the yellow one but the pink is nice enough. Smelling my nails non stop probably looks a bit weird though!

Glad I bought these for the novelty factor and the colour and coverage are good so I'm happy! :)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Sorry I've been missing guys! Between finishing up in my old job (which required more than a few 12+ hour days) and starting in my new job (which has seen my weekly commute go from 18 miles to over 300) I've just been too exhausted to blog when I have had spare time! Things are going to be hectic for about another three weeks as the plan is to move nearer to the new job so I started househunting today! All hints and tips gratefully appreciated as it will be my first time to enter into a year long lease and I am doing it all on my lonesome!

When I am moving I will be having a good look at my stash of blogworthy stuff so perhaps I will do some posts on what I have and some reviews of products! I *may* also manage to find the lead for my camera so I can finally upload some pics.

Perhaps ye can let me know what ye would like to see? Nails (my latest obsession), hair products, Lush, makeup... All suggestions welcome!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Glamour offers (July 2010)

Glamour have a great offer at the moment - free Benefit makeup!! The magazine costs €2.90 - €2.95 anywhere I've seen it and the makeup is full sized. I'm not sure of the exact price of the products in Ireland but on the website Bad Gal kohl pencil and Eye Bright pencil are £14. I can't find the It Stick on the website so maybe this has been discontinued?? :(

I managed to nab the ones with Bad Gal and the It Stick as I already own an Eye Bright that I got as a bonus when I ordered from the US website a while back...

What the website says: "This big, BAD, black eye pencil is a beauty addict's dream and a makeup artist's must-have. Dark, smoky, mysterious...being BAD never looked so good!

 What the website says: "Stroke this pink brightening pencil on the inner and outer corners of the eye to look instantly wide-awake. It's like a coffee break in a stick!"

As I said, this product appears to be off the website (both in the UK and US) at the moment so I am taking it that it is sold out... It's a concealer pencil and to me seems like a really handy product so if you like it, grab it fast!!

These are selling out so quickly you won't believe it so grab them now if you can!! I know I had to try a good few shops to get the ones I wanted and I've been looking since the 8th when it was realeased!! Here's hoping they get more in!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hints for Nails

Here are some hints I have picked up from other blogs in my quest to get better at nails and hopefully being able to do some 'Nails of the Day' (NOTD) posts down the line!

Start Clean!
Use nail polish remover to clean any remaining oils, dirt or even hand lotion from the surface of your nails before polishing. Even tiny amounts that you cannot see will cause the polish to not stick and potentially ruin the final result. Nail varnish remover wipes are great for this and if you aren't actually removing existing polish one wipe should do all your nails! I also use a nail varnish wipe on the top of an orange stick to help clean under my nails and feel it makes them even cleaner!

Precise Polishing
It takes some practice, but try placing the brush on your nail just ahead of the cuticle and gently press down on it, pushing it toward your cuticle line, just stopping short of touching it with polish. Then draw the brush toward the end of your nail, bending the brush over the nail end a little. This will apparently allow you to get a nice clean line of polish along your cuticle and drastically reduce the amount of cleanup needed - but I think I need a bit more practice!

Polish Cleanup
As you paint your nails, you can use the edge of your fingernail (if you have any length to them) to clean up around the very edge of your nail while the polish is still wet. Simply press gently on the cuticle and wipe along the cuticle line, using a sweeping motion. Keep a pad moistened with removed handy so you can keep your 'cleaning' nail clean or you will just spread it around.

Another method that apparently works even better is to use the beveled end of an orange stick moistened in remover to clean up little 'oops' spots. Wipe the stick tip on a nail varnish wipe (or paper towel or cotton pad moist with remover) to keep it clean.

A third method I have seen suggested is to get a lip balm stick and use this to essentially 'line' around the nail to ensure that any stray varnish can't stick to the surrounding skin.

Nail Surface Prep
Use a four-way buffer to remove ridges and smooth the surface of your nails. It is not necessary to go for high shine if you are going to use polish anyway. In fact, the slightly roughened surface of your nails will adhere to polish better, making your manicure or pedicure last longer. Be careful not to dig too much into the nail surface with the buffer or ridges will result when the nail grows out.

Use A Good Basecoat
It's really tough to get a good, consistently smooth finish on your nails if you don't use a ridge-filling basecoat under your color. A few of you are lucky enough to have very smooth nails, but most of us don't, so the basecoat tends to smooth out imperfections, and it gives the polish something to stick to, not to mention that it protects your nails from staining. This is particularly important with darker or more vivid colours as nails can be left stained and it takes forever to get them back to their old selves!

Use Good Lighting
It' difficult to good a good job of polishing if you can't see what you are doing well. Use a good light when you do your nails. If you have good lighting you will be able to see the spots where you missed and be able to fix them right away. (Unlike when I do my nails in bed at night and then the next day see all the streaks when it's too late to fix them! :( )

Roll Your Polishes - Don't Shake!
Shaking a bottle of polish fills it with little bubbles that take quite a while to settle out. Bubbles will result a in less than perfect finish. Instead, roll the bottle between your palms for 30 seconds or so before you use it to mix up the ingredients and give the polish more consistency. In addition to this, store your bottles of polish standing up. This helps keep the tops clean and also reduces leakage and sticking of the cover.

Use A Good Topcoat
Glossy or matte, a topcoat will seal the polish and protect it from chipping and wear. Clear topcoat does not have pigment it in, and so it is stronger than colored polish, and it lasts longer. Many topcoats also speed up drying time, so another great advantage. In the case of a good top coat you will find that it magnifies the color, so your nails will look like they are wet, even when dry. It gives a much sleeker/classier look in my opinion!

Take Your Time
A good result takes time and there is no way to rush it. Wait 5 - 10 minutes between coats so they can set before the next coat, or adding polish will simply pull and partially remove the first coat when you apply it. I find that doing a few thin coats is best as it takes longer for a thicker coat to dry. Even if applying it thicker does mean you need to do less coats overall, does it really matter when it's still using the same amount of varnish??

An obvious hint is that allowing the coats to dry will also speed up the curing time - the point where the polish no longer is susceptible to smudging. Multiple coats of relatively wet polish will stay soft for hours, exposing your mani or pedi to damage well after you thought they were dry and hard. Much as I like to paint my nails, it's no fun having to do a polish job over again. Doing it once is fun, doing it twice is too much like hard work!!

Have you any other hints that you think should be added to this??

Thank You! :)

I know it's only a little milestone but I've decided to celebrate it none the less!! I now have FIVE followers!! And two of those are people I don't know which makes it an even bigger deal!! :P

I just want to say thanks a million to those who read my ramblings! I'm not doing this for anyone but myself but it's a great feeling to think that I am not just wasting valuable interweb space and that someone actually reads it and hopefully enjoys it. It means a lot that I can be having a conversation with my nearest and dearest and be telling them of some new Lush purchase or event and then to discover that they have read it on my blog already! It shows that some of you aren't subscribed but are still checking in so five is really an arbitrary number!!

So, thanks a million and if you have any constructive criticism or any requests for future posts to make please feel free!!

Review: Kings of Neon (Nails Inc)

My latest addiction is nail polish and I have purchased a number of new ones in the last few weeks. This included a frantic search for the Kings of Neon set by Nails In which contains six limited edition neon colours, a Soho Silk base coat and a Caviar top coat.
This was available to purchase in BT2 in Dundrum as they have a full Nails Inc Nail Bar there and I managed to pick it up the day I went to see Sex and the City 2 - which seemed very fitting!! In Ireland the set retails at €35... A rip off when you consider that it is only £22 in the UK (converts to about €26.35 these days). Unfortunately it didn't seem to be possible to order it online and get it shipped here so unless I wanted to wait for a trip up North those were the prices I had to pay! :(

The colours in this set are: (L-R:) Orchid Street (purple), Sun Street (yellow), Orange Street (orange), Lime Street (green), Paradise Walk (pink), Phoenix Street (blue) and Caviar top coat and Soho Silk base coat. There are some discrepancies in relation to the actual size of the bottles with some sources saying that the bottles are 4ml and others (like the box!) saying they are 4.5ml.

The colours are every bit as vibrant as they look but a little confusing as some have a lovely shine finish to them and others are much more matt. The top coat gives a fabulous shine though and while I'm not sure I would agree with it's claim to be dry in 45 seconds it certainly is fairly quick to dry in comparison to others!

One of the days I did a 'skittle' effect on my nails with a different colour on each nail (I excluded the purple) which did catch people's attention. Unfortunately the only pic I got of it was using my Blackberry in my bedroom which has very poor lighting :(

This was two coats of the base coat, 2-3 coats of the colour (some needed more than others) and then 2 coats of top coat. It lasted really well and in the end I took it off because I wanted to try another colour. The other colour actually chipped off within a day though so I regretted not leaving this on!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Five Products I can't live without - Lush

I can't limit myself to 5 products I can't live without overall so am doing a Lush version of this tag that is going around beauty blogs at the moment. I will probably follow it up with a make-up version shortly - expect lots of Urban Decay in that one!! :)

1.) Comforter - I adore all things Comforter scented and have toyed with the idea of buying the bubble bar to have to sniff but so far resisted!! I have a 70ml decant of Comforter lotion that I am using sparingly in addition to the shower gel (which I hope to get more of soon for fear of ever running out!) and the solid perfume. It's a scent that I think I have mentioned elsewhere just reminds me of childhood and mugs of hot blackcurrant as I go to bed to cuddle up with a book. It really is a comforting scent to me!

2.) Flying Fox - Another scent that I have more than one product of but this one is more 'medicinal' for me as it really does seem to lift my mood as it states. It's quite an unusual smell and I do like it but not sure I would run out to buy more products in this scent - the shower gel and temple balm are enough for me!

3.) Vanillary perfume - I am not a massive fan of vanilla scents in general but I adore this perfume. What I find quite strange is that my friend who loves vanilla scents won't actually wear this perfume and uses it to scent things instead so it seems to be a bit of a role reversal!

4.) H'Suan Wen Hua - I have been dying my hair full time since I turned about 20 out of necessity... This has lead to some damage especially since I have now opted to have it highlighted too. I also have really thick hair so any damage needs to be carefully managed or I will lose control of my mane altogether! Previously I was using all Wella products but they were expensive and hard to get hold of once I changed hairdresser as they are only sold in Salons that use Wella dyes. About 3 months ago I decided I would give H'Suan Wen Hua a try to see if it made a difference to my hair and I was blown away by it! It's now a staple in my bathroom and I make sure I always have some to hand!

5.) Full of Grace serum bar - this has been a saviour to my skin and is another item I am keeping in constant supply as it has saved my skin and enabled me to wear foundation which was a rarity in the past!!

Argh!! Now that I have those 5 picked I realise how many Lush products I can't live without!! Runners up would include: Lemony Flutter, Buffy, all the emotibombs, Ocean Salt, UltraBland... and *so* much more!! :P

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Good Karma

Yup, it's a gift set from Lush! But that's not really what this post is about!! :)

I was in Lush yesterday (again!) because I decided in work on Friday that I would buy a pressie for a colleague who was in a minor road accident this week so she had something nice on her desk when she gets back to work. As she is vegetarian (bordering on Vegan) I decided something from Lush would be a safe bet! After some research I opted for the Good Karma gift set!

I'd been in Lush on Thursday evening as they were having a party but had forgotten to bring my shopping list. When I went in yesterday to grab the gift set I also wanted to pick up some items I had forgotten: H'Suan Wen Hua and Jungle conditioner. So with the three items in the basket I had a quick potter around... Only to discover that Ultrabalm had FINALLY arrived instore!! (This is a Lush equivalent of Vaseline but uses no petroleum jelly and is all natural and has only 3 ingredients!!) Popped that into my basket and headed to the till... to discover the party was still going and I was entitled to a goody bag!!

The lovely Fergus (♥ him!) was serving me! He was very excited that I had bought Ultrabalm (and possibly that I had admired his guts for working in a towel as it was a themed party) and went off to rummage to get me an extra nice goody bag which was *so* nice of him. He slyly asked me what scents I liked/disliked and after a bit came back with a teeny tiny goody bag... containing Vanillary perfume and Sultana soap!! The perfume alone is worth €34.95 and is my favourite scent!! I was ecstactic!

Hence the title of the post! I wouldn't have gone to Lush if I hadn't wanted to do something nice for someone else... And if I hadn't I would still be waiting on my Ultrabalm and not have gotten such an amazing goody bag!! That's good karma for sure!! :)

Nails Inc offers (May 2010)

Recently InStyle Magazine had an offer where you got a free nail varnish. Despite having LOADS of nail varnish I had no 'nude' colour that I could put on and forget about no matter what the outfit so one of the three colours being offered by InStyle caught my eye and after much watching out I managed to track it down.

(From L-R: Mink, Beach and Candy)

I had never heard of the brand, Nails Inc, and to be honest figured it was some cheapo brand looking for publicity. How wrong could I be?? Well, InStyle retails for €5.21 and Nails Inc varnishes retail for €15.44 in Boots. Essentially this means that had I managed to buy all three colours I would still only be forking out the cost of one of these fabby nail varnishes!

Mink was my colour of choice and I am loving it. The varnish has a lovely shine to it and lasts really well in comparison to other brands I have used! InStyle Mink is “greige”, the colour of the season and perfect to go with the current nude fashion palette. Unfortunately these polishes were created specifically for the InStyle offer so when it's gone, it's gone!

Bearing that in mind, just imagine how happy I was when I stumbled across another Nails Inc offer! Diet Coke and Nails Inc are currently running an offer in Boots (which I believe is going on until June 30th but don't quote me!) where if you buy 2 500ml bottles of diet Coke (€1.40 each) you get one of 4 nail varnishes (subject to availability) which were custom made for this offer!

(L-R: London, Paris, New York, Milan)

The 'Diet Coke City Collection' is a collection of four colors inspired by the four fashion capitals of the world – London, Paris, New York and Milan. The nude tone is said to depict the cool fashion of Brits living in London, while the deep purple that represents Paris is made to represent a sunset over the Eiffel Tower. New York is the city that never sleeps and to put that tagline into color form, it’s vivid fuchsia and Milan is depicted in a fiery Italian red hue.

Originally I had just wanted to get the London polish but this was such a bargain (I actually do drink diet Coke) that I ended up getting all four. Surprisingly I am actually loving the New York hot pink shade (which my lovely friend referred to as 'homewrecker pink') so have that adorning my nails at present! I think this is a brilliant bargain so will possibly even pick up a few more should I be buying diet Coke in Boots over the next 6 weeks!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Not all beauty and glamour!

Unfortunately my life is not all glamour... Recently I had the lovely experience of a blocked shower drain meaning a shower consisted of running the water for 2 minutes, letting it drain for 5 - all for fear of flooding the place!

I think this was due to a previous tenant having broken the bit you pull out to keep the drain cleared which meant that I couldn't clear it out on a regular basis and my long hair and the residue from the various products I use gradually clogged it! Damn you Lush and your luscious bubbles!! :(

I tried everything I could think of (pouring hot water down it, using a plunger and so on) before I gave in and tried using chemicals... However, in the end the only thing that worked was Mr Muscle Sink and Drain Foamer.

You put this down the drain, the liquid from the two compartments mix in the process and it foams up and all you have to do is leave it to do its magic for two hours. I was sceptical at first but I have to admit, it worked a charm! I think I'll be keeping this in stock from now on! At only €4.33 from Tesco it certainly worked out much cheaper than getting a plumber in!!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Lush Shower Gels

When tidying my stash this weekend just gone I discovered that I have *way* too much Lush shower gel ~ twelve different ones to be honest!!

This is about as creative as I get (Google Images and Microsoft Paint!)

Here's a list of what I have (and a bit on what Lush says about them!) and if anyone wants a review of a particular one just let me know in the comments section.

Regular Range:

*Yummy Yummy Yummy (100g): "It's a deliciously fragrant strawberry and almond cream for the skin.... created with wonderfully natural ingredients: fresh strawberries, soothing honey and moisturising almond oil, with a drop of rejuvenating olibanum."

Flying Fox (100g): "has the stunningly sensual scent of jasmine, ylang, cypress and palmarosa. It's is so relaxing that even the most frantic, frazzled person will relax into a restful mood after a warm shower."

Happy Hippy (100g): "The smiley and revitalizing grapefruit one. Our pink grapefruit shower gel is a magic potion to make the office seem inviting and dreary Monday mornings. It's made with fresh, organic pink grapefruits."

The Olive Branch (250g): "The Olive Branch has a welcoming, Mediterranean warmth to it, with organic olive oil to soften your skin, an infusion of vine leaves, sea salt and the fresh juice of mandarins."

*Tramp (250g): "Tramp is beautiful, lovely and gorgeous. It is soothing, calming and refreshing for the skin. White horehound calms the mind and lifts the spirits, balm infusion is soothing and oakmoss keeps it healthy. It smells of mature, earthy patchouli, which will entrance your senses."

*Both Yummy Yummy Yummy and Tramp are on the current discon list and will be leaving the shelves shortly. Rumour has it that Tramp will be a retro item in future but there are no guarantees when that will happen.

Forum/Shop Specials:

Butterball (500g): Smells like shea butter and cocoa butter and has a similar creamy consistency to Yummy Yummy Yummy, but is supposed to be more moisturising. If you like sweet, rich foodie scents then you'll definitely like it. To me, this smells like a Frappacino!

The Comforter (500g):I adore this smell and I have to be honest and say that since I got this shower gel all others (bar flying Fox) have been seriously neglected! It is a beautiful blackcurrant fragrance that to me really does signify pure comfort as it reminds me so much of drinking hot blackcurrant drinks as a child.
"Just like it's namesake, this luxurious shower gel is just as wonderfully fragrant as LUSH's The Comforter bubble bar. It's made with cypress and bergamot oils and tantalizing cassis for mysterious and seductive showering pleasure."
(Ingredients: Cassis Absolute (Ribes nigrum), Bergamot Oil (Citrus bergamia), Cassis Absolute (Ribes nigrum), Cypress Oil (Cupressus sempervirens), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Perfume, Cocoamphoacetate Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Colour 45410, Colour 17200.)

Avoshower (500g): “Imagine the loveliness that is Avobath, with its fresh lemongrass fragrance to wake you up in the morning and put a spring in your step. Now imagine that same stirring scent in a shower gel….. Well, you can start clapping your hands and hopping up and down in glee because Avoshower is here!
(Ingredients: Lemongrass Infusion (Cymbopogon schoenanthus), Water (Aqua) , Sodium Alkyl Sulfate, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Fine Sea Salt, Glyceryl Staerat – PEG 100, Cocamide MEA, Glycol Cetearate, Propylene Glycol, Lauryl Betaine, Organic Avacado Oil (Persea gratissima), Bergamot Oil (Citrus Aurantium bergamia), Lemongrass Oil (Cymbopogon schoenanthus), Rosewood Oil (Aniba rosaeodora), Perfume, Gardenia Extract (Gardenia jasminoides) , Green Glitter ((Polyethylene terephthalate), Methylparaben, Propylparaben.))

Aura Suavis (500g): "The Aura Suavis Shower Gel is made with all the essential oils deemed necessary to balance your aura. We've made pink to represent the way a balanced aura is supposed to appear. We have clary sage to help you see things in perspective and enhance your inner perception, and we have coriander, named the spice of happiness by the Ancient Egyptians. Spearmint is used to refresh a tired mind, and geranium wakes you up and lifts the spirits? The Aura Suavis also gives you a lovely aura of clean, perfumed skin, detectable by almost everybody."
(Ingredients: Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Perfume, Clary Sage Oil, Geranium Oil, Spearmint Oil, Gardenia Extract, Colour.)


Back for Breakfast
(100g and 500g): "Step into the shower with Back for Breakfast, inhale the refreshing lime, grapefruit and lemon oils; feel the smooth honey and fresh juices as they cleanse your body. Lemons help you to think clearly, limes banish anxiety and depression, while grapefruits revive and alleviate stress."

Chai (500g): "Tea is an astringent, so it tones your skin. That's why strong tea feels as if its sucking your mouth inside out when you take the first sip. We mix ours with fresh lemon juice, which is also a very cleansing astringent, plus a stash of spices, including warming ginger, allspice and cinnamon leaf. "

Happy 4 Sad (100g and 500g): "Happy 4 SAD is a cheery shower gel for everyone who doesn't see enough sunshine. To bring some extra light to your life, we've bottled refreshing mandarin oil, grapefruit oil for its traditional anti-depressant properties and rose oxymel to help soothe tension. We also add serious quantities of neroli oil, the one that's been proven to induce euphoria."


Snow Fairy (500g): "Candy floss pink and sweet as sugar with iridescent sparkles and a hint of wicked fruitiness...."
(Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Cocoamphoacetate, Lauryl Betaine, Perfume, Sea Salt (Sodium chloride), Lactic Acid, Synthetic Musk (Ethylene Brassylate),Cocamide DEA, Titanium Dioxide, Iridescent Glitter (Polyethylene terephthalate and Acrylates copolymer), Benzyl Benzoate, Colour 18050, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.)

Forum Party - Lush

As some of you may be aware Lush have a forum for those registered on the site. The forum attached to the site is called the International Forum for some reason. This is despite the forum being the North America (NA) forum and the forum being the Oz/NZ forum... Not that it really matters anyway!

One of the advantages to the forum is that we 'forumites' are supposed to get previews of upcoming products, the scoop on the discontinued items and so on. In essence it is a place for Lush to keep in contact with those who are most addicted to their products. Recently there has been some grumbling on the forum however as the Facebook page seems to be taking over to a certain extent. Personally I'm all for the information being shared and not too fussed on how it happens!

Another benefit however is that Lush on occasion spoil their forumites by having 'forum parties' where a limited edition/once off product is offered and made up after orders are placed so that only those who order on the day can get their grubby mitts on it! The items can only be ordered by phoning in to mail order between specific times and while this is going on the forum is turned into a party playground with people posting about how difficult it is to get through and the Lush staff running competitions throughout the day.

Lush had a forum party on April 7th to mark the fact that Auntie Pamela was leaving Lush Times and Big Harry was taking over. A number of the forumites weren't too thrilled however as many of the products offered weren't new and had been or would be offered as shop specials. One example being that my adorable friend had phoned me on the Saturday to say that the Cork store were selling Karma (shower) jelly and that she had picked one up for me... Only for it to be offered at the forum party the following Wednesday! Also, I ordered the Aura Suavis shower gel from the Forum party... Only to see it in my local store before my order arrived! Regardless it was lovely to take part in the Forum party: the choosing what I wanted to get, the agony of trying to get through, the stress of making sure I ordered exactly what I wanted and didn't forget anything... it was all part of the experience!!

The products offered were a combination of those made to order and some that had been 'discovered' in the stockroom apparently. You had to get in early to get the items that were already made but all others were going to be made afterwards, meaning that the orders would take a few weeks to arrive.

The items available were:

Made to Order:
Comforter Shower Gel (500g) ~ £11.95
Aura Suavis Shower Gel (500g) ~ £14.95
Karma Shower Jelly (100g) ~ £4.25B Electro Shower Gel (500g) ~ £19.50

Items 'discovered' were:
Avoshower Gel (500g) ~ £14.95 (made February 2010)
Avoshower Gel (250g) ~ £8.25 (made February 2010)
Butterball Shower Gel (500g) ~ £10.50 (made February 2010)
Snow Fairy Shower Gel (500g) ~ £5.95 (Special discounted price! +1 free Snow Fairy Solid Perfume with every bottle ordered) (Made December 2009)

Also on offer were all of the new products (which were not due instore for another few weeks) and the 100g bottles of the retro products.

I already had Butterball shower gel, Snow Fairy SG and solid perfume, and the Karma jelly, and am waiting on some B Electro to be sent on to me from where I had it sent to my friends house in Boston!(Lush NA don't deliver internationally!) I ordered Comforter, Aura Suavis and Avoshower. Each order also got three free mini bath ballistics and mine were: Blackberry, Big Blue and Think Pink.

My Order :)

I tried to phone from 10am and finally got through at 10:25am - seemed like the longest 25 minutes ever as I must have redialled the number about 100 times! The girl who took my order was absolutely adorable but in my nervousness I didn't actually catch her name!

All in all I loved the experience of the party... Or did I just love the fact that I now get to shower in Comforter?? Either way, roll on the next party!! I'm keeping my fingers crossed for Comforter Lotion the next time! What's that you say?? 5 pots?? Don't mind if I do!! :P

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Review: Volcano Foot Mask

Today I decided that this is a product I probably won't repurchase. It's not that it is a bad product as such, it's just one that I don't find practical and don't really get the hype about!

I have purchased two pots of this and finished neither of them. One I used about 1/2 of and today I threw out a pot that I can only recall using once! Volcano foot scrub has a shelf life of only 3 months and I just don't use it often enough to make it worth purchasing. The texture is almost putty-like in my opinion and the smell is unusual, although one I am getting used to as it is the same scent as H'Suan Wen Hua which is now a staple for me!

It requires you to cover your feet in the mask, wrap them in plastic (cling film or old plastic bags), sit for 10-15 minutes and then scrub it off. It drives me insane that I am so limited for those 10-15 minutes. Have you ever tried to walk with your feet covered in plastic?? As someone who is naturally clumsy it is virtually impossible for me!

Like I said, not a bad product; I've loved the results when I have taken the time to do it! Unfortunately it's just a product that isn't for me and two pots later I've decided to spend my money on better things! Does anyone else feel the same about this? Or indeed about other products?

Review: Vanillary Perfume

Firstly I have to admit that I am not a perfume fan, I'd love to be but it is one thing that I have identified that triggers my migraines :( As a result when I first got into Lush I never passed a second glance on their two liquid fragrances - Karma and Vanillary.

Then came Christmas... And the quandry of what to get for one of my best friends - a fellow Lushie! Knowing she loved Lush and loved Vanilla scents (something I usually detest!) it seemed *way* too simple - a Vanilla Scoop giftset from Lush!! It contains vanilla dee-light body lotion, a vanilla puff dusting powder, a vanilla fountain bath bomb and the Vanillary fragrance all in a gorgeous hat box! (For those considering buying it as a gift for someone, hope your wrapping skills are better than mine!) Well, when my friend finally unwrapped the gift and I got a whiff of the scent I was hooked - and promptly ordered a Vanilla Scoop as a gift to myself!!

I would probably have been better off just ordering the perfume and the body lotion to be honest as I haven't used the dusting powder yet (4 months later!) and I have given away the bath bomb as I don't like baths. The perfume however, is now a staple and gets used at least 3-4 times a week. As someone who isn't in the habit of wearing perfume for fear it triggers a migraine this is equivalent to applying a perfume 5-6 times a day for a regular perfume user!! I adore the scent and, touch wood!, it hasn't triggered a migraine so far!!

I'm not very good with scents but the Vanillary fragrance is less sweet than most vanilla fragrances I have experienced and seems to have many more layers to it. It has a hint of sandalwood and burnt caramel to it and lasts for ages on the skin (and in your hair!). There are times when I have still been able to smell it the next morning having had it on for almost 24 hours.

The thing that prompted me to write this review? The compliments I have gotten! On a few nights out in recent times the menfolk have picked up on the scent (maybe there is some truth to the way to their hearts being through their stomachs?) and a number of women have sniffed me out to ask what the fragrance was! The best compliment however was from my cousin's little girl who informed me that I smelled like a princess!! Isn't that what every girl wants?? :)

Monday, May 3, 2010

My New Obsession: Urban Decay eyeshadows

My newest obsession is Urban Decay eyeshadow. I love the vibrant colours and how easy it is to apply. Of course, as usual I have gone OTT and in a short length of time (6 weeks) have purchased all four of the currently available eyeshadow palettes but they are being used, as are the mini primer potions which are something I would never have considered purchasing in the past!

Sustainable Shadow Box:

This was my first ever Urban Decay purchase and I am in love with it! The set is really eyecatching and comes presented in eco-friendly packaging. The case itself is made from bamboo and the interior tray which holds the eyshadows is made from recycled paper.

This box contains 10 Shadows, an applicator and Mini Eyeshadow Primer. The shades included are:
  • Flash (bright iridescent purple),
  • Flipside (electric teal w/ blue sheen)
  • Grifter (sheer lavender w/ lots of silver microglitter)
  • Half Baked (subtle, lustrous bronze)
  • Kiddie Pool (ocean blue w/ iridescent glitter)
  • Midnight Cowboy Rides Again (golden beige w/ bronze, gold & silver glitter)
  • Oil Slick (black with silver glitter)
  • Twice Baked (brownie brown w/ gold glitter)
  • Uzi (metallic silver w/ big iridescent sparkles)
  • YDK (bronzed mocha w/ golden microglitter)

Deluxe Shadow Box:

This set contains a mini Eye Shadow Primer Potion as well as two applicators in addition to the 9 Deluxe Eye Shadows:
  • Fishnet (light purple)
  • Graffiti (green)
  • Honey (gold)
  • Peace (turquoise)
  • Ransom (dark purple)
  • Scratch (champagne)
  • Shag (bronze)
  • Underground (fawn)
  • Zero (black)

The casing is very 'bling' as it is wrapped in faux purple suede and features a window of irresistibly touchable shiny silver mesh on the front.

Eyeshadow Ammo Shadow Box:

This limited edition eyeshadow box was released to celebrate Urban Decay's tenth birthday. When you open the box you are presented with 10 of UDs best-selling shadows arranged as five sets of coordinating duos.

This eye shadow box contains the shades of:

  • Chopper (coppery fawn w/ silver microglitter)
  • Grifter (sheer lavender w/ lots of silver microglitter)
  • Last Call (plum punch)
  • Maui Wowie (antique gold with silver glitter)
  • Mildew (deep green)
  • Oil Slick (black with silver glitter)
  • Polyester Bride (white w/ silver glitter)
  • Shattered (bright green/blue shift)
  • Sin (champagne)
  • Smog (deep bronze)

The Urban Decay Ammo Shadow Box is covered in a touchable, matte black paper with overlapping textures of violet metallic foil and rich velvety flocking. It comes complete with a perfectly sized mirror, applicators and a magnetic closure to ensure that it will stay closed in your handbag.

This is the only eyeshadow box I have purchased from Urban Decay that did not come with eyeshadow primer potion.

Preen Shadow Box:
This set contains 6 eyeshadows (only one with glitter!) and also comes with a 24/7 eyeliner pencil in Zero (black) and a mini eyeshadow primer potion in a really cute bottle.

The colours in this set are

  • Flash (electric purple)
  • Mildew (deep green)
  • Painkiller (turquoise shimmer)
  • Smog (deep bronze)
  • Snatch (peachy-pink w/glitter)
  • Toasted (copper)

This palatte is one that you could use for day-to-day wear and also for going out. It's ideal for packing for holidays as it is quite versatile with the shades ranging from neutral to quite bright.

Matt eyeshadow:

The one problem that I have with the Urban Decay eyeshadows is that the majority of them have a large amount of glitter in them. I love a small amount of glitter at times, but not to the extent that it goes everywhere. I purchased the matt eyeshadow in Yeyo so that I can use this as a base and hopefully reduce the amount of glitter as a result!

Boots Haul

I got a notion into my head yesterday that I wanted to go to the Boots in Liffey Valley so off I went. This was inspired by a quest for the Preen eyeshadow box from Urban Decay which is my latest obsession! (I will be dedicating an entire blog post to Urban Decay as soon as I find the lead for my camera!)

Boots were doing an offer where instead of the usual 4 points per €1 spent you got 10 per €1 spent if your purchase came to over €22. You also got a voucher for €7.50 off Ruby and Millie if you spent over a certain amount. I ended up doing three different transactions in order to take advantage of the offers.

My first transaction was:

The Preen Shadow Box from Urban Decay

This comes with 6 colours (two of which are exclusive to this set: Snatch (peachy-pink with glitter) and Painkiller (turquoise shimmer)), Zero 24/7 eyeliner pencil and a mini eyeshadow Primer Potion.

From No7 range:

A Foundation brush

Stay Perfect eyeshadow Palatte in Smoky Mint

Stay Perfect Lip Lacquer in Lovely Pink

And because I spent so much on the No7 range I was entitled to a free "Pink Box" which has 6 mini No7 products in it.

This transaction put me well over €22 so I got plenty of points and also gained a voucher for €7.50 off Ruby and Millie. I'd already been eyeing up some of the products so decided to have a little look to see what I could use the voucher for.

Second Transaction:

I found a Smoky Eyes Kit from Ruby & Millie for €19.50 which contained 4 eyeshadows in pink, light blue, grey and a dark blue, a black eyeliner (with smudger) and a really decent double ended eyeshadow brush. At only €12 when using the voucher it was a bargain I couldn't leave behind!

Unfortunately the Ruby & Millie concession was really close to the nail varnishes and I couldn't help having a look.

My lack of willpower meant that I also ended up purchasing 3 nail polishes from 17: Cocoa Berry (from the High Gloss range) and Mint Choc Chip and Orange Soda (from the Lasting Fix range). They too had an offer on so I got a free "Nautical But Nice!" makeup collection.

Of course this transaction meant I got yet another €7.50 off Ruby & Millie voucher so I ended up carrying out a third transaction and getting a 7mm eye liner brush which came to exactly €7.50 and refused to let myself look at any other products!!

So approximately €95 left behind me in Boots but I feel I got plenty of bargains with my free makeup brush, free 17 set and free No7 gift set! I also nabbed about €10 in points which means I now have over €35 worth so my next spree may be free!

Lush: Emotibomb review

Prior to the discon announcement one of the items that was rumoured was to be going to be discontinued was the range of emotibombs! I could actually cry at the thoughts of this because these are one of my mainstays that I rely on to restore me to the little sanity I have left after a tough day at work!! They've been saved this time but I need to face up to the fact that in time some of my beloved products will be no more!

I'm so obsessed with emotibombs that as some of you will know I recently placed an order from the Australian Lush site as they had the Up the Wooden Hill emotibomb which is a more relaxing one and ideal for bedtime.

Up the Wooden Hill:
Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Perfume, Lavender Oil (Lavandula augustifolia), Lavender Absolute (Lavandula augustifolia), Chamomile Blue Oil (Matricaria chamomilla), Neroli Oil (Citrus amara).

"...If you've only got time for a shower (or you've only got a shower), you can use a lavender, camomile and neroli scented Up the Wooden Hill for a quick, powerful dose of sleeping potion. Brush your teeth first before you get into the shower because you might be too sleepy afterwards."

My take on it:
These are amazing. Even just the smell of them in my room helped me to sleep better. They're a lovely burst of Lavender without being overpowering and I am going to use them sparingly to make them last as long as possible.

The emotibombs that are more readily available due to the fact that they are in the stores here and on the website are:

Too Drunk (aka 'Too Drunk to F**k')

Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Dipropylene Glycol, Perfume, Peppermint Oil (Mentha piperita), Tagetes Oil (Tagetes minuta), Sweet Wild Orange Oil (Citrus sinensis), Fennel Oil (Foeniculum vulgare), Chocolate Bean

It has essential oils of peppermint, tagetes, fennel and reviving sweet wild orange to refresh you, soothe a sore head and bring you back to life. Just stick one in the shower, turn on the water and stand there - or sit if you can't manage being vertical - getting drenched, until it all feels a bit better. Of course, you don't have to have a hangover to use one.

My take on it:
This is probably my least favourite of the emotibombs although there are days where I am drawn to them so I still keep one or two in the house just in case. The smell isn't really definable in comparison to the other emotibombs but I do love the shape of them and the fact that they aren't just plain white.

Up You Gets

Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Dipropylene Glycol, Perfume, Lime Oil (Citrus aurantifolia), Grapefruit Oil (Citrus paradisi), Lemon Oil (Citrus limonum)

"If you need to wake up in the morning, Up You Gets with this reviving Emotibomb. While it can't give you winning lottery numbers, it can send its tiny little fragrance molecules clambering up your nostrils to give you a lime, lemon and grapefruit slap. There isn't anything that works better than this. Nothing legal anyway."

My take on it:
I love this emotibomb. I find it really does what it says to give you a boost both in energy and in emotional well-being as it seems to uplift my spirit as well as my flagging energy levels. It's a vibrant, almost summery scent and when paired with Happy Hippy shower gel puts a smile on my face and a pep in my step!

Sex In The Shower

Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Dipropylene Glycol, Perfume, Juniper Berry Oil (Juniperus communis), Ginger Oil (Zingiber officinale), Ylang Ylang Oil (Cananga odorata), Rose Oil (Rosa damascena), Jasmine Absolute (Jasminum grandiflorum), Geranium Oil (Pelargonium graveolens), Mimosa Absolute (Acacia decurrens)

"Our new Sex in the Shower Emotibomb encourages people to share a shower to conserve water. As the warm water touches its surface, wafts of sensual scents entwine themselves around you. Get some soap and lather your partner all over. Just remember to turn the water off while you're in a lather. With great showers comes great responsibility."

My take on it:
Without a doubt this is my favourite of all the emotibombs I have tried. As a single girl I can't vouch for its aphrodesiac properties (and being honest I'm not sure I'd be willing to share it!) but this product never fails to calm and destress me after a tough day. If this shows up on a discontinuation list in the future without a good alternative having been made available I can guarantee I will be stashing about 50 of them to get me through!!

Lush Discon List Spring 2010

The dreaded discon list was announced on the Lush forum by Hilary on Friday 23rd April...

So the following products will be disappearing from the stores and the website:

Happy Pill bath bomb
Supernova bath bomb
Q10 Toner Tab
Mirror Mirror neck cream
Razorantium shaving cream
Shave the Planet shaving cream
Tramp shower gel
Yummy Yummy Yummy shower gel
Crash Course In Skincare fresh face mask
Candy Fluff Dusting Powder
Karma Dusting Powder
I Should Coco soap
Hard Shampoo Bar
Soft Shampoo Bar

It's a Wrap is also going to be discontinued.

Out of all of these products It's A Wrap and the Crash Course In Skincare fresh face mask were actually the only things I had used so it didn't hit me too hard... Crash Course In Skincare fresh face mask is the one I use when my beloved BB Seaweed is out of stock but I'm not overly dedicated to it. I find the smell of yogurt can be a bit much.

The announcing of the discon list has (not surprisingly) spurred me on to get my hands on some of the products before they were discontinued. As a result my last trip to Lush saw me splashing out on some I Should Coco soap and a small bottle of Yummy Yummy Yummy. They didn't seem to have any Tramp in stock so I have ordered some of that from the website. We've been told that it is almost definitely going into the Retro range before long so that fans can still get their hands on it.

I have also ordered two of the It's A Wrap from the website as I love the one I have in my bathroom and it is getting very crowded so I have been putting off buying another for the last while... I think it's a great bargain at only £9.95stg off when you consider that it is a Fairtrade product and includes three of the tins which bought separately would retail at £8.40stg. Not sure what I will do with all the massage bar tins I am accumulating though so might ask one of the sales assistants if there is any chance I can swop them for body butter tins as I find them a much better shape! Nothing ventured, nothing gained! Worst they can say is no!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Nail Varnish Stash

It's coming into summer... In fact, we officially enter summer time this weekend!! One of the things that is quintessentially summer to me is painting my toenails and as a result I have a pretty decent collection of nail varnishes - 32 in total! (Bet you're surprised to hear that!!)

(My collection of Nail polishes)

Most of my nail varnishes are Rimmel. The first Rimmel nail varnish I purchased was for my Debs in 2000 and I have to say I haven't found any that match their quality so far. I honestly can't think of any flaw with them. They have a great selection of colours which attract me back again and again and last for ages. They also have a new brush on the 'Pro' range which I have fallen in love with as it is a wider brush, making application so much easier. Other brands I have randomly accumulated and include in my current stash include H&M, 17, Natural Collection, Gosh and Avon.

Due to work I tend not to paint my finger nails too vivid a colour so my collection includes a number of clear nail varnishes and one or two slightly tinted ones. Out of these my Sally Hansen Diamond Strength polish is my favourite as it is slightly irridescent and has a lovely shine to it without being too obvious. I know Sally Hansen nail polishes can be a bit hit and miss however so I'm counting myself lucky that this one has worked out for me!

Review: Full of Grace face serum (Lush)

Full of Grace face serum is one of the newest products to appear in Lush. (There is also a Saving Face bar which is for less sensitive skin.) The blurb on the website for this is:
"Calm sensitive skin with our concoction of soothing tropical butters and mushrooms. Our Full of Grace serum bar is made with a concentrated blend of moisturising murumuru and cupuacu butters to hydrate skin, and rose oil to relieve irritations. We've also used portobello mushrooms for their plentiful vitamins and antioxidant property. The serum is easily absorbed by the skin, creating a soothing treatment for the face. Massage into the skin before you use a fresh face mask, or whenever you feel your skin needs a little grace."

Now, I will be the first to admit that I was more than a little skeptical about putting mushrooms on my face! It just didn't seem very... Lushious! My delivery arrived on Monday and as soon as the bar was unpacked I looked at it and thought "Why did I waste my money on you?" and placed it on my beside table. The bar is small - smaller even than Soft Coeur - and has a rather unusual smell that I was more than slightly wary of, probably because I knew the bar contained mushroom rather than anything to actually do with the smell!

On Monday night I planned to do a facemask and whipped out the instructions on the different ways to use the serum that I had printed off from the International Forum. It suggested that you could leave the serum on for 20 minutes before doing a face mask so this is what I did before following it up with my BB Seaweed fresh facemask. Have to admit my skin felt pretty good afterwards but I wasn't quite sure if this was down to the serum or not.

On Tuesday I decided to be adventurous and try applying the serum before going to bed and just leaving it to sink in overnight. Unfortunately due to a Puppy related crisis I didn't get time to wash it off on Wednesday morning and it was only later in the day that I realised how amazing my skin felt. It felt moisturised, soft and not at all oily which was what I had feared.

On Thursday I decided to apply the serum early in the day and leave it to sink in as I was just going to be pottering around the house. I then had a shower and did a facemask later in the evening and followed my usual skincare routine of Angels on Bare Skin/Ocean Salt combo, facemask, Eau Roma toner water and Catch a Wrinkle moisturiser (Soap and Glory). As my moisturiser is a day moisturiser I have been on the lookout for something slightly heavier for night-time, I think Full of Grace may just be the answer to my prayers. So tonight, I am heading to bed with Full of Grace once again applied- nothing ventured, nothing gained!

I know three days is very little to use a new product before reviewing it and hopefully I will come back to the topic at some stage to give you an update. However, my initial reaction is that this is an amazing product! I have tried a number of the Lush moisturisers and have yet to find one that suits my skin. As I have said before I have very picky skin that knows what it likes so to even get to Day 3 with this product is a big deal for me and bodes well for the future use of this product! I am loving how soft my skin is, the fact that the serum appears to moisturise where needed without causing less dry patches to get oily, the fact that the serum doesn't actually look oily on my face when applied and the overall calming and balancing effect it seems to have on my face - so far it's 5/5 from me!!

My essentials

Due to Puppy having had an operation last week I have found myself down at my parents house for probably the longest time since I moved out almost ten years ago. It's a very strange experience to say the least! I don't visit here too often (and when I do it tends to just be for an overnight visit) so I don't have anything more than the very, very basics of deodourant, toothbrush and toothpaste stored here. Due to the fact that I was travelling in a Yaris with an ill dog, all her acessories (beds, blankets, food, treats, crate etc), a large amount of clothes and a boot that I hadn't managed to clear out for a number of reasons I had to be pretty selective in what toiletries I brought with me - bringing my entire stash was not an option! This forced me to examine what my essentials, rather than wants, were!

The items I deemed absolutely necessary for my 10 night stay were:
Lush Products:
  • Rehab shampoo
  • Coolaulin conditioner
  • American Cream conditioner
  • Flying Fox shower gel
  • Olive Branch shower gel
  • Ocean Salt
  • Lemony Flutter
  • Ultrabland cleanser
  • Eau Roma toner water
  • BB Seaweed & A Crashcourse in Skincare fresh facemasks (they would have gone off otherwise!)
  • A small tub of Angels on Bare Skin mixed with Ocean Salt
Soap & Glory products:
  • Catch A Wrinkle In Time Age Avoiding Day Moisturiser
  • Some Like It Hot Body Softening Thermal Scrub

I also had a Lush Mail Order delivery coming to my parents house which contained mainly bath stuff as gifts for others, but also my Full of Grace face serum bar which I had really been looking forward to trying and has far exceeded my expectations! A review will follow!!

Project 10 Pan

Project 10 Pan was apparently concieved by a beauty Guru called Lollipop26 (who can be found both on her blog and on youtube). The idea is that you put yourself on a spending ban in relation to beauty products until you have 'hit pan' on ten items. "Hitting pan" comes from the idea that when you use up an eyeshadow you expose the 'pan' (metal) at the bottom. Lollipop26 however considers that you have hit pan only when the item is fully used up.

As I have an excessive amount of beauty products I have started a semi-'Project 10 Pan' for myself. Some things I will continue to buy, but others I just want to see the end to. For example in my decluttering I have uncovered numerous duplicates of basics such as deodourant and toothpaste which mean that I will not need to replace these items as I use them up. I don't envisage however that I will completely stop buying beauty items (particularly Lush items) but I will be thinking twice before I buy things.

I will be using this blog to celebrate when I finally do hit pan on items and hopefully I will get to 10 before too long... Maybe then I can justify some of my excessive Lush hauls!

Items I have used up since starting:
Palmolive Soft & Gentle Aromatherapy deodourant (anti-stress)
Lush American Cream conditioner (100ml)
Biore Pore Perfect Strips (nose)
A Crash Course in Skincare (Lush Fresh facemask)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lush; Solid perfumes Stash

When I went to the 'Spring Fling' in my local Lush on March 6th I managed to complete my collection of Lush Solid Perfumes...

I now own all of the regular line, the Christmas edition from this year, and one extra special one!!

The regular line of solid perfumes contains:
  • American Cream
  • Honey I Washed The Kids
  • Karma
  • Sakura
  • The Comforter
  • The Olive Branch, and
  • Vanillary

The Christmas/Holiday limited edition solid perfume for 2009 was Snow Fairy. It's not my favourite scent but I think I got three of these in grab bags at different stages so have at least two of them left.

And finally, when I was ordering from I added a Potion Solid Perfume to my basket. This was ordered completely blind as the only Potion product available over here is the Potion lotion which is a retro item and only available online. I am loving this - and yes, being honest, part of it probably is that no one else will have it! I'm a big child that way!!

Lush facemask night

I was in Lush for the 'Spring Fling' and had been in the week previously too and bought a fresh facemask each time... The first week I bought A Crash Course in Skincare as they were out of my beloved BB Seaweed; so when that was in the next week I just had to buy it!!

A Crash Course in Skincare is described on the site as: "the kind of blend your mum would create if she could. It has rich, nutritious, organic avocado, freshly squeezed lemon juice to brighten and tone the skin and soothing natural yoghurt." It's a very smooth blend with no 'pieces' in it (BB Seaweed contains pieces of seaweed) and maybe because of this I have myself convinced that you get an extra use out of it. I've used it three times already and there is still some left in the pot.

BB Seaweed is described on the website as; "Relaxing and reviving, mineral-rich mask to cleanse, soften and beautify all skins. This blend, inspired by the sea, contains fresh and nutritious seaweed and seaweed absolute. Cleansing kaolin, antiseptic honey, calming aloe vera and rose absolute make this a great mask for everyone." It's the one facemask that I come back to again and again. It seems to calm my skin. I have very sensitive skin but I am very lucky in that I rarely suffer breakouts. I do however, like many females, get the occasional very painful spot on my jawline. (You know that one lone spot that has you in agony but 90% of the time no one else can see it?? That one!!) This mask is a godsend at those times as it seems to just clear it up in no time! A few times this mask has gone past it's best before date before I got to finish it. I won't use it on my face if this happens but have used it on other parts of my body to great effect so don't feel you have to throw it out immediately!

As the Crash Course in Skincare facemask was due to go out of date (expires 18th March) I decided to give my skin some TLC tonight. I cleansed with UltraBland, used my Angels on Bare Skin/Ocean Salt combo for an exfoliator, and then used my BB Seaweed mask. It is due to expire on 30th March and despite having bought it over a week ago I hadn't used it yet!! I then cleaned off the mask, used some of the Eau Roma Toner water to take off any residue off my skin and went on to apply A Crash Course in Skincare facemask. When that was done I again cleaned off the mask, used toner to take off the residue, used a Biore Pore Perfect strip on my nose (it was the last one left in the box and annoying me if I'm being honest!) and when that was done used toner again to remove residue before lathering my face with Skin Drink moisturiser. I got this sample in a grab bag the last day I was in Lush. It's definitely not a moisturiser that I could use during the day as it puts a really oily film on my skin but I have used it at night twice lately and found that it gave a good boost to my skin so I may as well use up the samples!!

So now, its time for me to head to bed, making sure I have enough time for a nice long shower in the morning (Flying Fox / Olive Branch here I come!) and time to cleanse, tone and moisturise. Really can't skip this tomorrow as the excess Skin Drink will need to be removed. I will use Catch a Wrinkle from Soap and Glory as usual for my daytime moisturiser. Trying to get into a better routine as I can be very lax about it given that apart from dry skin I don't really have problem skin at all!