Monday, 30 September 2013


As well as working as a Dentist Receptionist/PA, Beauty Blogger, Wife and general fabulous (well trying to be) person - I also am a Stop Smoking Cessation Advisor. My main role is support anyone who wants to give up smoking which includes recommending the correct support as well as offering monitoring to show how giving up is improving your health.
I have previously spoken on my experience of being an smoker in I Used to be a Dirty Smoker.  October also marks the month I had my final puff on a cigarette so October for me is always a milestone. This year I will celebrating 4 years of being smoke free.

We official declare you a non smoker after 6 weeks of low CO2 readings in clinic, by this time your breathing has already improved, taste has returned, and you would already have more energy. Within 5 years you half your chance of heart attack and within 10 years your chances of getting lung cancer return to the levels of that of someone who has never smoked.

For me it was the money aspect, even though I was a 'social' smoker (smoked on nights out and occasional during the week) I spent happily £20 a week on cigarettes and smoking accessories. This was working out a £1040 a year that I wasn't saving.

I wish a huge good luck to everyone who is taking part. I know the first week is the worst as your body adapts to not having Nicotine constantly being put in, but the benefits outweigh the pains. There is help out there - the stop smoking clinics cost nothing and there is a friendly face to support you. Also there is the Smoke Free website where you can order materials and information to help, as well as a helpline and online support.

28 days is all it takes.

(Same as before this is not sponsored, it's something I truly believe in and back you all the way!)

Sunday, 29 September 2013

I Need to Look Fabulous Giveaway

For those eagle eyed people on my Instagram, I did indeed hint at a giveaway. I do love a good giveaway, and Friday I won the Truffle Shuffle Friday competition to win some money to spend on the site. I hardly win anything before the Truffle Shuffle I think it was a lip balm in a Twitter giveaway over the Summer. I did find it ironic after the latest win that I was scheduling a giveaway for here.

This giveaway has the cutest Limited Edition Liquids Sand minis from OPI that I brought from Olympia Beauty. They are not in the shops yet (October is the launch date I have), so they are exclusive at the moment. To help with glamming up is a set of false lashes with glue and a mini version of Laurens Way Darker than Dark tanning lotion will also be sent with it.
  • It is UK only (Stupid Royal Mail and their stance on sending nail varnish aboard).
  • There are mandatory entries which must be completed to qualify and yes they will be checked.
  • The varnishes were purchased by me but the rest have been gifted to me.
  • Closing time and date is Monday 14th October 2013 at 12.00 GMT (London).
  • All prizes will be sent 2nd to the winner and a proof of postage will also be collected.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good Luck Everyone

Saturday, 28 September 2013

NOTD - Essie's For The Twill of It

This has been on my wish list since I first saw the swatches on the Essie Twitter. It is a mixture of green/pink duo chrome in a dark grey base with a metallic finish. I got my bottle last weekend at Olympia Beauty so I have the professional formulation but I have noticed a difference between this and the diffusion line on the high street.

You cannot rush the painting as it can show brush streaks so I find it easier to take it slow with thin coats of polish (this was done in two coats). It is however worth it, my instagram feed went berserk with hearts when I uploaded it and my work colleagues where asking when and where they can buy it from. I personally have not stopped staring at it's multi-tonal beautifulness since I've put it on.

Keep an eye out in Boots stores as it will fly out of the store once in stock (£7.99)


Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Olympia Beauty 2013 - Haul included (it's a long one)

There is two things I learnt from this weekend: It is not wise to go to a day long event while recovering from Laryngitis and pregnant. I had been unwell with a virus for nearly two weeks but I insisted on going, I love trade shows, not only from a blogger point of view but also as trade.

I arrived about 10.30 as normal the trains confused me (and I know I wasn't the only one), and headed straight to the Media centre. The really wonderful thing about Olympia Beauty is that they do fully embrace beauty bloggers and they are welcome into the rest stop of the media centre. After grabbing a cold diet Coke, I headed into the masses for initial walk around to assess who was there and see if there was any brands I wanted to speak to/spend money on.

After an hour I was back into the media centre for the PR meet and greet, this where the brands who are there come and have a chat with the media about new launches and form new relationships. This was great as trying to speak to anyone on the floor was impossible at this point, the crowds where huge!

I may have done a little fan girl sequel at OPI being there, as many of you know I am a huge fan of their polishes and used them when I first trained as a manicurist. They were there to show off the new Limited Edition Mariah Carey Christmas Collection - rich reds, plums and gold glitters. The part I instantly needed to have was the liquid sands, which have to recently not really bowled me over.

These will be available on the OPI website, on being told that I could buy them at the show did invest in the liquid sands (notice the plural), and if where eagle eyed enough on my Instagram (unevenlemming) you also know that I might have got a set to giveaway.

While I was at Olympia I also refreshed my subscription to Scratch Magazine (Professional monthly magazine for nail technicians which featured Karla Powell's amazing Pop Art make up and nails.) as well as Professional Beauty Magazine (updates on the industry and trends coming through). With Scratch I got a gift worth around £80 with nails foils, OPI mini kit, Morgan Taylor varnish and top coat, files etc.

I also targeted Essie for the AW13 Collection - If you had read my wishlist I had been hankering after For The Twill of It and was determined to get my hands on it. It does not disappoint in person, and after a show and tell to Kat (Tales of a Pale Face) , Alice (Bright Town Girl) , Dani (So Many Lovely Things) and Natasha (Shot of Beauty) we know all now own one (I am not an embalmer - honest). I also managed to pick up some bargain false lashes for £1-£2 each to pop into my kit.

Unfortunately after a long day in London, the Laryngitis returned leaving me with no voice and also open to getting another cold, hence why I'm few a days later than I wanted with this entry as I've been curled up feeling sorry for myself. Lesson learnt.

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Autumn/Winter 2013 Wishlist

These are the items that invade my dreams at night, the ones that I loving look at swatches online and sigh that they are not mine - yet. I really love AW collections, they seem to suit my tastes and skin tone much better than Summer.

1. Poisonberry by Lime Crime - This I truly blame on Jayne from Jayne's Kitschen, every time she wears it I get lipstick envy and keep telling her that I need to buy it. I have looked loads of berry shade lipstick swatches and find that I have got something close to it already, this I haven't at all. I have a huge obsession over this colour.

2. Sleek Make Up i Divine in Vintage Romance - I really like the quality of Sleek Make Up, I got my first palette last year (Sparkle 2) and was blown over by the quality of the palettes for under £8. Perfect AW colours of soft berry and golds, I could see this being used everyday as a break from brown/beige.

3. Illamasqa Lipstick in Shard - This one compared to Poisonberry is much more red but deeper and matt, same again saw swatches of it around the launch date and kept going back to them. I love the way you could wear big and bold or as a stain (see? It's multipurpose lipstick, two for the price of one). Just read they are going to be at Olympia Beauty this weekend (does a little fist pump).

4. Maybelline Eye Studio Gel Liner Black (available at all High Street chemists) - Another AW trend is the catflick, something I really hadn't embraced before. I have had liquid liners but found them fiddly and gave up after a while. I'm hoping that this will encourage me to bring out my inner cat woman. This recommendation came from the very talented Scottish MUA, Andrew James.

5. Essie For the Twill of It - Now I was left in a tizzy over this because OPI has also Love & Peace & OPI which is the exact dupe of this. After reading a few comparisons it came to Essie as I read the formulation is a one coat and looks better on.

6. Bourjois Java Rice Loose Powder (At all High Street Chemists) - Vintage style packaging? Check. Lightweight and slightly illuminating? Check. Good Price? £9.99, check. Been embalmed by other beauty bloggers to buy it? Triple check.

7. OPI DS Extragance Lapis (Also known as Granite) and Pewter - I wasn't too bound over by the San Francisco Collection apart from Love & Peace & OPI (See number 5). Then I saw these glitter infused beauties and realised as an lover of OPI I don't own any of the DS Extragance range. I'm more driven towards Lapis at the moment with a want to look at Pewter (I think my Illamasqua in Creator that I got in the sales could be close to it).

This weekend I will also be heading towards London (for will be one of my last times before Minilemming) for Olympia Beauty - a beauty trade show that contains half of this wish list. I had an absolute great day last year and look forward to bumping into people I know this year, please feel free to say hello etc.

So the question goes to you, what do you want this AW?

Monday, 16 September 2013

NOTD - Moss Behaving by Cheeky

Cheeky are the younger sister of Cowshed, they will be launching in 25 prestige Superdrug stores at the end of October. They still keep the core of Cowshed's philophy of simple and natural products, but are more accessible and fun for people who cannot get the Cowshed Spa. They will offer treatments for the person who wants to keep maintained but want it now.

As well as cheerful range of products they are also bringing out 21 nail paints that will retail for £7 each or if you are lucky enough to get to Superdrug store can have a file and paint for £12 as well as take the colour home with you.

The range has a vast array of colours but the one I was really intrigued by was Moss Behaving, just screamed AW trend but was completely different to the berry tones the other were wearing. I had a file and buff as well as a paint which was not only quick but technically perfect. My manicurist was passionate about her work and I couldn't fault her.

The colour itself I found took on different colours, in the warm light of indoors it went a deep green, but once it was outside into the white light of day, it went to this beautiful blue/green. I have had this on for 5 days now and it still going strong, even with showering and constantly typing.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Superdrug Press Day AW13

I was invited to my first press day by the wonderful people who look after the PR at Superdrug. The theme of the day was to celebrate brands that can only be purchased at Superdrug's stores as well as championing their own brand products. The wall above is one of two that hosted everything they sell their own brand, I did spend some time ticking off what I already use myself and was surprised it was more than I expected.

If it wasn't for me tweeting how much I love the look of the B.Skincare Facial Oil, I wouldn't of been there so it was only right that I visited them first and get some information on what I think is going to be one of the hottest new skincare launches since their Miceller Water.

The range is simple - split into 3 phases on not your age but what phase your skin is at the time: Phase one: Hydration. Phase two: Prevention and radiance. Phase Three: Firming and repairing. I have fallen for the B.Skincare for its simplicity as well as products that do what they say.
I have been lucky to try out the B.Replenished Facial Oil for Anti Oxidant Boost for nearly two weeks and already it has replaced my Antipodes Divine Oil as something that my skin really reacts to well. This I will be reviewing more in depth at a later time as I feel it needs an entry of its own.
I also got a chance to try some of the make up which I hadn't before. My highlights were the new Colour Correct Cream where the lightest is light enough for pale skins and provides a high SPF of 45 (Launches November at £11.99). I also was drawn to the B.Stunning Vibrant Eye Shimmer in Lizzie - described as a soft neutral pinky/beige, when swatched it looked skin toned peachy/pink with a gold shimmer, a perfect base colour if I ever saw one (Launches October at £6.99).
After a stroll round I did get a little giddy over finding that Nicole by OPI are stocked in some branches of Superdrug now. They are the younger sister of OPI Professional and retail for £7.99 compared to £11.99 for the professional range. I am currently hunting these down as I write this.
I then got distracted by the shiney nail varnishes at GOSH including the new Frosted Sand polishes, these dry to glitter but matt finish. I instantly was drawn to the vintage lilac colour that the make artist was wearing (a thank you for modelling for the photo). I have the silver version to play with after I was given it to try.
I was also having a magpie moment with GOSH's Girls on Film which is now added to the increasing wishlist.
Of course we cannot talk about exclusives to Superdrug without mentioning their biggest make up brand: MUA Cosmetics. The AW13 line up is the strongest they have had in a long time, adding to the successful palettes they are now adding the Matt palette (after a social media campaign) and Smokey palette (with eye liner).
Top Left: Luxe Pretty Edgy Eye Palette. Top Right: Matt. Bottom Left: Luxe Glitter Palettes. Bottom Right: Smokey Palette
They are also introducing another line to the MUA and MUA Pro lines: MUA Luxe. This is the on trend but premium side of MUA, the prices are only slightly higher than the other lines (Undressed is £4 while the new Pretty Edgy Eye palette will be £8). The quality of ingredients will be a higher quality to match with the  price point. A key example is that eye shadow powder in the Luxe range are more finely milled and I found go on smoother.
There will also be a range of glitter palettes launching with the Luxe range, suspended in clear non sticky gel there will be a choice of 4. Can be worn on their own or over the top of another colour, and will have not fall out into eyes. Palettes will be £4 each.
For Lime Crime Valentine fans they are also Velvet Lip Lacquers launching in October, matt finish lip paint that will honest not budge. I had these on my hand the whole day and didn't even fade after washing hands, etc. Very impressive for £3 will come in Red, Purple, Coral, Deep and Light Pink.
There are some very exciting launches that are coming from Superdrug at the moment which isn't great news for my bank balance.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

MiniLemming Update - Week 23

Taken at Week 20 - No, I don't know what that thing is at the top either.

Here they are, fully formed Minilemming doing well and on target (growth wise) for January 9th. I still do not what I am having, I could of found out easily as the scan was absolutely clear. I was taken on a mystery tour of their body, being shown everything as the measurements where taken. Yes, I did shed a few tears, I was naturally worried for weeks that everything wasn't OK.

The kicks started the Sunday before the scan, actually the monkey was getting me into training for the early mornings by waking me up at 6am which what I thought were an upset tummy. It wasn't until early evening that I had my first proper kick which made me realise that they making themselves know.

I now have increased flutters and kicks throughout the day, last night even reacted to me asking if it wanted dinner (see? I'm not talking to myself anymore like a mad woman). I am now much bigger, where I'm starting to need help getting up from sofa as well as moving a lot more slower. I swear a snail overtook me on the way home tonight. Also I get nightly indigestion and heartburn, lovely.

The count down has now started until I go on maternity leave (about 3 months today, unless I get ordered to go earlier). And the reality of what really is going on in there starts to loom a lot more bigger.....

Monday, 9 September 2013

Purepotions Skin Salvation

As my pregnancy develops I have notice that my skin has got drier and more itchy. My poor suffering lips are as flaky as when it is Winter. I received this from Natures Healthbox when they asked for constructive advice on Facebook how they can improve their service, I was happy to be offered this even through I wasn't the main winner for this.

Natures Healthbox only deal with products that are as close to nature as possible, I have been a customer for a while after working with them to review Weleda's Pomegranate Body Oil (Currently using their Stretch Mark Body Oil). The small team have always been helpful and encourage any feedback from their customer to improve services.

Skin Salvation comes in a 15ml glass jar (classed as a trail size -£3.50). It has a mixture of beeswax, hemp seed oil, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Olive fruit oil amongst the ingredients. These provide a barrier to the inflamed skin as well healing agents that help with the process.

I have kept this by my computer screen to apply to lips as and when, as well as any parts of skin that need that help. On my lips it doesn't leave much residue and does leave my lips more softer and nourished than before. When applied to the skin, it healed up any redness that happened and reduced the itchiness that I had within a few minutes. Its also light enough that I didn't notice wearing it until I gave Hubby a kiss and he whine that I had lip stuff on.

It does provide value wise, you only need to apply a small amount warmed between fingers to the area. The entry size 30ml is £7.49 while the largest is 120ml for £16.99 (currently on offer 2 for £25). They do recommend a patch test before use and each pot comes with a best before date so you can ensure that it is at it's best.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Skincare Right Now (aka The Skincare Tag)

L-R: SkinTruth Toner, Boots No.7 Eye Make Up Remover, Estee Lauder Daywear Plus, Antipodes Divine Oil, Purity 3-1 Cleanser and Dermalogica Micro Exfoliator.

Describe your skincare routine in 5 words..

Whatever works right now
(with a word to spare)

What's your skin type?

At the moment erratic - with my hormones dipping up and down, it show more on my skin. On Monday it was so clear and glowing, I wore no base but the next day I had to put on a full base on to cover the blotchy redness. It also can be sensitive, the routine I have now is a result of a lot of misses and it's the first time in a while that my skin has reacted positive to products for a while.

What's your favourite skincare product?

Antipodes Divine Avocado and Rosehip Facial Oil has been the biggest revelation to my skin, it has been soothing and noursing to my erratic skin. I love the scent of this, I like to breath it's relaxing scent in before I massage it in. It is now an essential part of my skincare routine.

Top blemish zapper

Witch Blemish Stick - had it since I was a teenager and I haven't found anything since that really comes close and is cost effective. The formula has never changed all the time its been available, if its not broke, why fix it? (A PS - the anti-blemish primer is also a brilliant high street product, I will be reviewing this in the next coming weeks)

Face wipes - yay or nay?

They are a huge nay - I never feel fully 'cleansed' after using one, it more feels like I'm moving the dirt/grime around my face rather than cleaning. They are however better than not taking make up off at all (very useful when I used to go out in the evening and return in the morning).

Toner - yay or nay?

I used to be very anti toner, even when working for Estee Lauder. This hugely changed as I got older, I underestimated how much of a cleansing bonus they are to routine and this was merely was I found 'The one' in Etat Pur. That has now run out and I am now finishing the one I had in my stock pile.

High End Skincare or High End Makeup?

Skincare without a doubt, look after your skin and it'll glow needing less make up. I have first no make up that comes close to that glowing fresh skinned look. I would also invest in more high end foundation just because of pigments and tones (As you know I am really pale), the rest the high street does perfect.

What's the most unusual facial product you've tried?

Nothing would you believe, if I wasn't pregnant I would of offered to be a trail person for my workplace as they just launched Vampire facial there. It involves taking blood from your arm, separating the layer that’s filled with platelets and then injecting it through tiny needles into your face. It suppose to smooth and rejuvenate the face.

You're in a French Pharmacy and can only pick one item - what would it be?

I wouldn't know to be honest, I would probably in my GCSE French ask for recommendations. I do like a little hidden gem.

Tell us your skincare tip

Review your skincare with every season, skin is constantly changing (remember you get new skin cells come to the surface every 28 days). Anything can affect it: stress, seasons and as I well know at the moment, pregnancy.

Many Thanks to the awesome Lisahh-Jayne for tagging me and I open it up to anyone who wants to give it go. Stick your link in comments, I'm nosey and want to read them!


Monday, 2 September 2013

Knowing Your Customer Rights

First of all a huge thank you to Grace from All That Slap for getting me wound up about Beauty Advisors, I have previously ranted about them here as well as my experience of being a former Counter Manager.

Knowing Your Rights

Sale of Goods Act 1979 states that when purchase an item from anywhere like a shop, you and the seller go into an agreement that the goods they are selling are
  • as described - If it says a red jumper, it cannot be a pair of blue trousers
  • of satisfactory quality - product must last a reasonable amount of time, a watch that lasts a day is not of satisfactory quality.
  • fit for purpose - covers not only the obvious purpose of an item but any purpose you queried and were given assurances about by the seller.
This is applicable if you are purchasing in the UK, if it is abroad you are subject to their laws so it's worth reading up before purchasing.

Before purchasing anything I always ask what the returns policy is, there is normally a time limit when you can take items back (on average I've found 28 days). I would also take the name of the person who is serving you as well as a back up. If possible get a sample to try so you don't open the product up as it is more likely they will take it back.

Pay on card - You'll find out why in the next bit.

I have something to return, now what do I do?

Find your proof of purchase, it's the most powerful bit of paper you can take with you.

If you have lost the receipt, this is where the paying by card comes in - A majority of companies do also take bank statements as proof of purchase, and can also go back through their till audits to find the transactions (this however takes a long time and normally can only be done by certain people so there is a long wait involved, they might even ask you to come back another day).

Explain clearly why you are bringing it back, keeping the Sales of Goods Act 1979 in mind, and also what end result you would want and be willing to negotiate/compromise.

What is their rights as a seller?

They have the right to offer you (and probably in this order):
  • A repair.
  •  A replacement.
  •  A refund.
As I mentioned before ask what their policy is before purchasing and take the sales assistants name.

"I am not getting the result I want"

First of all, remember they have a business to protect as well, that is why there are policies and time limits in place.

If they are being stubborn and you have followed everything that ask been asked of you to the letter, then demand to speak to someone higher like a manager. If in a department store, you can speak to several middle managers like department (who look after the section) or floor (who look after the whole floor, thus are higher management), you will very rarely speak to a store manager as I find they are hardly in the store hence the floor managers.

If this is still not resolved to your satisfaction then contact the company directly, put in as much detail as possible - who you spoke to, when, why you are speaking to them. Any company who values their customers will do everything to resolve the issue as they do not want an unhappy customer telling the world how bad their service was.

If you want to take it even further (and yes you can within your rights) you can contact the Citizen's Advice. They can offer support and legal advice on what to do. Same as contacting the companies head office, make sure you have as much detail as possible. It can go as far as going to court, but I have never heard of any retail purchases going this far.

I hope this has been a huge help for you. For me, great customer service is how a company not only handles it sales but ultimately how it handles it complaints.

My email and Twitter is always open (and if I don't know, I normally know someone who will).