Thursday, 24 March 2016

REVIEW: LA ROCHE-POSAY EFFACLAR ANTI-BLEMISH SYSTEM

I am quite ashamed to admit that I have never really bothered with skincare. In fact, for the majority of my uni life I didn't even take it off before bed! Yep- I slept in my make-up. About 5 days a week. It's a good job I don't suffer with problem skin because I would definitely be suffering with severe acne and blackheads the size of moon craters by now. At most I used a make-up wipe. I think I used toner once..? But that was when I stayed over a a friends house and it was all she had. So yeah. My skincare regimen was pretty abysmal.

It was only until about a year ago, when I received a bottle of MooGoo Anti-Ageing Face Cream at a blogger event that I started realising how much softer and more hydrated my skin felt after applying. I have oily/combination skin, so I've always been a bit wary about smothering my face in moisturiser before bed, with the fear of waking up glued to my pillow with a layer of grease but this was the opposite! My skin felt fresh, hydrated and clear.

After I came back from Thailand, and given my delicate skin an absolute hammering on the sunbed pre and post holiday, I decided it was time to give my face a little more TLC. I mean, I've come to terms with the face I'm gonna look like a leather bag by the time I'm 30 but I would rather be a polished tan Mulberry Alexa rather than a crusty, battered old satchel from 10BC.


Which brings me nicely along to the holy trinity of skincare! I know it's gonna sound a bit biased cos it's the first 3-step set I've bought and used by oh my GOD it's good. I bought the La Roche-Posay Effaclar anti-blemish system after hearing rave reviews about it online. Which is always a good sign. I did some research- it's for oily skin. GREAT news. It just so happened that the day I went online to purchase, it had a massive 30% off HERE so it was £24 instead of £35. BARGAIN.

You only need to use a tiny bit of cleanser because it lathers up so much and it feels so soft on your skin, a lot kinder than other facial washes/scrubs I have previously used! The toner reduces the appearance of my pores, and again, felt so refreshing to apply- especially after 9 mins on the sunbeds. The moisturiser added instant hydration and didn't feel 'heavy' at all- I've also been using it in the morning before I apply my foundation.

My favourite products are the purifying gel (which you can purchase HERE) because it gets every scrap of make-up off (aside from mascara, but I just use the toner for that) and makes my face feel so clean and fresh. And the moisturiser (which you can purchase HERE) because it makes my skin feel so soft and hydrated and DOESN'T feel heavy which is an absolute must for me when buying moisturiser. 

Monday, 14 March 2016

MUMS ON THE GO: AFTERNOON TEA AT THE GARDEN KITCHEN


I swear I have had more afternoon tea's in the last few months than I have had in my life!!! Of course I'm not complaining (well, apart from when I can't fit into my eye-wateringly tight dress on Saturday night or I have to live in sweatpants for a couple of days a la Regina George cos I feel like Shamu) because they are D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S. And the best part is, each place offers a different selection of treats, so it's impossible to get bored of them! 

The Watch Shop's Mum on the Go campaign highlights how much our Mum's do for us on a regular basis. Especially mine! She makes my lunch every day for work- and I don't mean stale ham sandwiches. I get tofu stir fry, homemade beef burger in a lettuce bun with feta, spicy chicken salad with avocado and beetroot, I'm talking gourmet cuisine here! Not to mention all my washing, ironing, taxi-ing, you name it, she does it for me. I'm spoilt, I know. (Reason 94857394574 why I am never moving out.)

Because of everything she does for me, it was nice to be able to treat her for once, so I took her for a lovely relaxed afternoon tea at a place called The Garden Kitchen. I have seen photos of the cute little wooden bench popping up on my newsfeed for a couple of months now, so I was excited to see if it lived up to it's glowing rep.



When I had got over the cuteness of this tiny welly, (it took a while I'n not gonna lie) I got round to analysing the vast array of sweets and savouries in front of me. The great thing about The Garden Kitchen is that they switch up the theme of the afternoon tea every couple of weeks- this one was the 'Best of British' and it did not disappoint! 

The savoury selection included: 
Mini fish and chips
Homemade Cornish pasty
Honey roast ham sandwich
Cauliflower cheese soup

The sweets included:
Lemon meringue pie
Chocolate mint cupcake
Baked rice pudding
Raspberry ice cream milkshake
Scone with jam and cream
Chocolate dipped homemade digestive



One of my favourite things about afternoon tea is deciding what to have first! Me and my Mum always pick the same so we can discuss throughout (LOL). I would have to say my favourites were the cauliflower cheese soup and the rice pudding! With the lemon meringue coming a close second. Really strange because I never eat cauliflower cheese, I'm not a massive fan of lemon and rice pudding would never been my dessert of choice..EVER! Unless maybe I was transported back to school in the Edwardian times.

What did you treat your Mum to this Mothers Day? Have you been to The Garden Kitchen before?

Thursday, 3 March 2016

ULTIMATE #FOODPORN RECIPES

Over the last few months I have been indulging a little more more than usual. After all, it was Christmas, and I went to Thailand etc etc.. So my clothes have been fitting me a little bit TOO snug for my liking. Anyway, last week I took the plunge and signed up with a personal trainer at my local gym. Of course, for him to start creating a custom program for me I had to go through the initiation....being weighed. I didn't think there was anything on the planet that was worse than standing on the scales and reading the figure out loud to a member of the opposite sex until he told me that he needed to calculate my body fat percentage. I thought this was a simple equation dividing my height by my weight or something along those lines...but no. He got PINCERS out to clamp onto my fat from TEN different parts of my body (technical name- calipers). Two main areas of horror being the bit of fat under my chin, and the bit under my arm that bunches up over my bra strap. I can't even remember the other areas he clamped because I was too busy dying a slow painful death.

Needless to say, I left the gym feeling violated. But onwards and upwards, right?!

Anyway, to counteract the fact I can't eat ANYTHING carby, greasy, chocolate-y, fatty, alcoholic (except on weekends) I thought I would put together the ultimate FOODPORN recipe guide, so I can imagine that I'm eating it whilst slogging it out on the Stairmaster. (which is my new most hated workout ever....after having over taken the dreaded burpee)

Enjoy! 

Snickers Cheesecake Recipe

Snickers Cheesecake from Handle The Heat

Nutella Therapy Cookies

Nutella Therapy Cookies from Cleobuttera


Peanut Butter Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Brownie French Toasts | http://cafedelites.com

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Brownie French Toast by Cafe De Lites
(Think I just gained 5 pounds just saying the name of this dish)

Ultimate guide to saving your gorgeous Ferrero Rocher Cupcakes alive during the preparation time :):

Ferrero Rocher Cupcakes from OMG Chocolate Desserts


Salted Caramel Cups from Yammie's Noshery

Cadbury Creme Egg Rocky Road - The ultimate Easter make! No bake, super easy and absolutely delicious. Great for bake sales, tea time treats and dessert. http://www.tamingtwins.com

Creme Egg Rocky Road from Taming Twins

Salted Caramel Mocha + Nutella Brownies | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Salted Caramel Mocha and Nutella Brownies from Half Baked Harvest

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

DEBENHAMS FLOWERS REVIEW (Including a 25% discount code!)


Who doesn't love receiving flowers? Opening the door to a huge bouquet of gorgeous, colourful, deliciously scented flowers has got to be one of the best instant mood-lifters EVER. I actually used to work in my Auntie's florist when I was 15, and I always used to pester her to let me go with the delivery lady to give out the gorgeous flower arrangements across P-Town. It's so funny when you walk into a busy office and the employees pretend they haven't seen you, PRAYING that you are about to walk up, tap them on the shoulder and present them with the flowers so they can be like OMG FOR ME?!?!?!?!? And the rest of the office is hideously jealous. I'v had flowers delivered to me before at work and it was the best thing EVER, especially because my boyfriend (at the time) was massively in the doghouse and he brought them in himself, it was SO CUTE! Even if they were from Marks and Spencer's and he left the price tag on :))))))

I was delighted to be contacted by Debenhams flowers, to review their bouquet delivery service. I was spoilt for choice with all the gorgeous bouquets, but decided to go for the 'Sweet Harmony', as it included 3 of my favourite flowers- lillies, pink roses and germani's. I was amazed by the speed of the delivery as I was given the option to get them delivered by the next day (including Sunday delivery!)

Unfortunately, a couple of the roses were not looking too healthy, but Debenhams Flowers have a 7 day freshness guarantee so after a quick email, another bouquet was promptly sent back out to me.


As a massive thank you to my readers, Debenhams have kindly given me a 25% off discount code for me to share! DFBLOG25 will give you 25% off all from the flowers (excluding the flowers by post range) which can be found over at: http://www.debenhamsflowers.com
Or, if your quick, you can get your orders in just in time for Mothers Day! Check out the range here: http://www.debenhamsflowers.com/mothers-day-flowers, it includes balloons, chocolate and wine!



Oh, and if anybody is thinking about sending some to me, please send them to my office so I look popular, thanks in advance!