Friday, 26 September 2014

Garnier BB blur cream: review

I’m not a foundation wearer but I swear by BB cream. My favourites so far being Clarins and Garnier’s BB cream (in medium). But then Garnier came up trumps with this…

BB and blur!!!!!! 

My face is so excited!

One swipe of this soft cream and my skin in the morning has gone from being blotchy and uneven to glowing and smooth!

my fave new beauty buy

This is a BB cream and a primer, which just gives that edge for smoothing the skin’s texture, blurring pores and fine lines and offering an overall even finish. It is also a moisturiser with SPF 30 (more than the normal BB cream which has SPF 15). This is a moisturiser, primer and foundation all in one! A great time saver in the morning before work!

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Peanut butter and choc chip chunky chewy cookies

For the last few months I have been helping my friend Heidi with a few bake sales. Whilst it’s great to do something for charity etc etc etc, I actually enjoyed the chance to get out the pinny and get baking! I also tried a few new recipes and flavours, such as lemon ream butterfly cupcakes, Mars bar chewy chocolate cakes, mocha and peanut butter swirl cake, sweet and savoury courgette muffins, and my favourite, toffee popcorn cheesecake cupcakes!!! 

My latest addition to my creations are these tasty peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies.

delicious cookie time 

They are so chewy and sweet, I have to warn you that they are a little addictive so prepare to break the diet.

I used smooth peanut butter, but this recipe could work just as well with crunchy.

These are so easy to make too and take next to no time to make!
Here’s how.


125 grams of butter, softened
100 grams of light brown soft sugar
125 grams of caster sugar
225 grams of self raising flour
½ teaspoon of salt
1 beaten egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence/extract
2 heaped tablespoons of smooth peanut butter
100g chocolate chips 

Monday, 22 September 2014

Nude nails from "Jessica": review

As we transit from bright summery days, to well, I am not quite sure what the weather is doing right now, I have opted for a nude nail during the week, that way ensuring it always compliments my outfit... whatever the weather is doing and what I am wearing! 

my perfect nude nail 

I love fancy nail art (check out these funky bad boys from House of Holland that won loads of compliments on holiday) and bright colours but every now and again there is something refreshing about a nude nail. 

goes with any outfit 

It is a sophisticated, grown up, and simple look. 

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Drinkies and lunch at "The Durell Arms" Pub, Fulham, SW London

I have been living in Fulham with the girls for nearly a year now but my family haven't had the chance to visit yet which is a shame, cos they aren't that far away (Kent, Waterloo and Cambridge). So with the Sunday 21 September being pencilled in the diary for what seems like months, my family finally made it here.

I needed to find a place that served tasty food, good drinks and was in a short walking radius... The Durell Arms pub it was then!

The Durell Arms 

I have been there for a few evening drinks and a bit of food before. It has been pretty good on previous visits and luckily this time didn't disappoint (I always get a little nervous when you are responsible for the recommendations!)

this is the roast chicken!!! 

everyone's sides came on this huge platter!!! 

The rest of the gang went for the Sunday roast but I opted for the beetroot, broccoli, quinoa, feta and spinach salad with a side of battered calamari with aioli (a garlicy mayo that is perfect with squid). The calamari was delish and the salad felt like it was doing my insides some good! As I get serious food envy, I had to have a bite of the chicken roast too. The chicken was so moist and the even the roasties were so crisp! The Yorkshire puddings were huge as well which always gets a thumbs up fro me. Actually the whole roast was mahusive!!!

Friday, 19 September 2014

Raw, vegan, healthy blueberry cheesecake

If you’ve got a sweet tooth like me, then you’ll sympathise with me when I say just how hard it is to skip the refined sugar from the healthy eating diet. On the whole I have a very healthy diet but sugar is my Achilles heel. So this year I have tried my hardest to start switching the desserts for healthier homemade alternatives.

healthy but delicious 

blueberries are full of antioxidants 

Regular readers of the blog will know I like cheesecake (regular readers will also know that’s an understatement and that I bloody love cheesecake), and I’ve already attempted a few homemade, low fat, raw recipes. Check out my no-bake raspberry jelly cheesecake and my mixed berry frozen cheesecake.

crunchy base and creamy filling 

My latest recipe, this blueberry cheesecake is raw, vegan friendly, and completely dairy, sugar and gluten free. Plus tastes pretty good. Plus all the kngredownts are natural, so there are no gidden nastiest or additives. It’s basically just fruit and nut.

Here's what you will need…

For the base
½ cup dates
3-4 figs

For the filling
½ cup Brazil nuts (feel free to use another nut) soaked overnight
1 cup of blueberries (I used fresh but frozen would work)
1 large banana (I used a frozen one that I have a stock of in my freezer)
¼ cup of coconut oil, melted
¼ agave nectar (honey will also work but has a higher G.I)
1 teaspoon of lemon juice

this is all you need for the base 

Monday, 15 September 2014

Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer (illuminating shimmer): review

Who doesn't like a soft, shimmery glow on the skin??? 
Personally I LOVE a little shimmer! 

Back in September last year, I blogged about my latest beauty addiction, which was Laura Mercier's tinted moisturizer,  in the illuminating variety for a touch of shimmer (although they do one without if you are not a fan). A year on I still love this product, so am re-posting. With all the products I have used over the past 12 months, the fact that I am still loving this must be a good sign! 

still loving this product 

Not only is it a gorgeous shimmer, it is also hydrating as it's also a moisturiser and therefore won't dry your skin out and neither will it grease your skin as some shimmer oils do. Plus it contains an antioxidant vitamin complex to protect the skin! 

They do a range of shades too. 

love the gorgeous shimmer 

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Environ hydrating oil capsules: review

A few months ago, I had a skin analysis with Environ at Harvey Nicks, and left there not only with a clearer understanding of my skin but also a few samples to try at home. One of the products that I had were these hydrating oil capsules


A concentrated facial oil containing antioxidants and Vitamin A all in a tiny skittle-shaped capsule. 

Your skin is actually your largest organ and as such needs nutrients just as much as your insides do. The key ingredient here is vitamin A, perfect for hydrating your skin. 

these are bursting full of nutrients

Friday, 12 September 2014

"I quit sugar" Sarah Wilson: book review

As you may have seen from my blog posts in recent months, I am doing my best to cut down sugar. It all started when I completed a nutrition in weight loss qualification, and was horrified to discover that it isn't fat that makes you fat, it is sugar!!! 

I then found this book, "I Quit Sugar" by Sarah Wilson, the Australian journalist and presenter (she hosted the fist season of Australian Master Chef) but more importantly a former sugar junkie who has found ways to cut the sugar from her life without cutting the taste and enjoyment out of life.  Sarah made the change when she found she couldn't control her weight issues, sleep problems, mood disorders and thyroid disease. Switching to a 'clean' diet has helped resolve all her issues... and she looks fantastic for it! 

I Quit Sugar
Sarah Wilson 

Sarah's book is a good read - it is down to earth and actually pretty practical. I do enjoy eating clean and healthy but I will be the first to admit that you have to be prepared, wither with ingredients, your timing or planning ahead. It's not to use as an excuse, and with effort it can be done, but I did find this book more practical then some other health books I have read. Plus the layout, pictures and illustrations are gorgeous. 

So what are the benefits of limiting the sugar in your diet???

  • reducing your risk of diabetes 
  • reducing risk of heart disease 
  • clearer skin
  • reduced mood swings
  • better sleep

In fact, researchers at the University of California, says sugar contributes to 35 million deaths a year! 

And if that doesn't encourage you, then read this article about how it can knock up to 20 years off your looks!

I am sold!  

pretty illustrations 

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Raw vegan coconut snack bars - dairy and gluten free (tastes like white chocolate)

Recently I have been overdoing it on the refined sugar, but I find the trouble is once you get into the habit of eating sugar every day, it quickly spirals. I’m trying to break my sugar habit and at the weekend, did a spot of no-bake baking, trying out some sweet treats that use natural sugar and none of the white refined crap.

One of the recipes I created was these delicious coconut bars, which taste like white chocolate and coconut. They’re so delicious, totally morish!

coconutty and delish 

They are so easy to make too, they only take about 5 minutes to make. Here’s how...

2/3 cup Brazil nuts
½ cup desiccated coconut
12 pitted dates
2 tablespoons of natural cashew butter
1 teaspoon of coconut oil, melted
Scoop of vanilla protein powder
Drizzle of agave nectar (optional)

big fan of this nut butter at the moment 

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Sleek trio of blushers in 'pink lemonade': review

Back in December, I blogged about my love for Sleek's blush by 3, a trio of blushers in Pink Sprint, a collection of bright and colourful blushers in a small, compact case. Since then I have discovered a lighter and fresher trio of blushers in the palette Pink Lemonade.

blush by 3 in pink lemonade 

pretty in pastels 

The three shades are irresistibly cute and sweet coloured. My favourite is icing sugar on the left. It adds a soft sheen with a slight shimmer (but nothing OTT so good for the day time too). 

perfect for a subtle sheen 

The middle blusher is a gorgeous cream blusher - I am not normally a fan of the cream blushers, but this is so easy to apply and sets as a powder almost. It also adds as a great base for laying under another blusher for a longer staying power.

love the texture of this cream blusher 

Each blusher palette is £9.99, a pretty good price I think for what you get. The quality is good too, and lasts a while. I also love Sleek's eye make up palette's - check review here

X x X

Friday, 5 September 2014

Real girl's guide to eating healthy and staying fit

As you have probably seen from my recent blogs, I have been lucky enough to have an excellent summer – I partied away at hideout festival in Croatia, I finally got round to doing my PADI in Phuket in Thailand (read the blog post here) and over the bank holiday weekend I went to Ibiza with the girls (check out my thoughts on Ocean Beach Club here).

However, I also managed to get food poisoning (thanks undercooked squid) and had a really bad allergic reaction (thanks salt water in Jet apartments).

So now things are back to normal and I am getting back into my routine, I went to kick boxing for the first time in SIX WEEKS and I surprised myself – my fitness was still there. I must note here though that I had forgotten ALL my sparring techniques and totally freaked out when faced with sparring… and cried! In my defense, someone throwing a punch to your face can be pretty scary! #iamsocool

Anyway though, I am also pleased to say that over the summer I haven’t lost my fitness, and what’s more I haven’t put on one single pound and my clothes aren’t feeling any tighter. I think I have finally cracked that “healthy” is a lifestyle, and fad diets don’t work! It isn’t about dieting to get into a bikini and then binging on holiday and piling it all back on again! This is just a cycle of yo yo dieting.

On this reflection I want to share with you my top tips that work for me in maintaining a “health is a lifestyle” attitude and staying fit at all times… but all with a pinch of realism. This is a real girl’s guide!

I like to be healthy and fit and enjoy knocking up new recipes but I also love to eat out at least 2 times a week, have a cocktail addiction and like to do other things at the weekend other than bake quinoa and sweat it in the gym. Sure, I would love a 6 pack but then again, I love experiencing all on offer and tasting a bit of it all!

It is about balance but hopefully these tricks can help…

Real girl tip 1: always have breakfast
Don’t even think about stepping outside and commuting to work without a decent breakfast. Wake up that ten minutes earlier to get a decent breakfast down you, this will rev your metabolism, keep sugar levels from spiking (and then heading for the nearest sources of sugar) and help keep your energy up. Basically this will set you up all day.

porridge - 2 min in the microwave! 

Real girl tip 2: eat smaller meals, more often
I like to eat three smaller meals and several snacks throughout the day. Yes you read right, I said “snack”. But I do mean healthy snacks here, like carrots sticks and hummus or protein shakes, not half a pack of McVities hob nobs and a bar of dairy milk.  

smoothies are a great snack!

Real girl tip 3: drink plenty of water
I am bit of a water monster, and I gulp down about 4 liters of the stuff a day. This might be a bit too much for most, but make sure you get at least 2 liters a day. It will help flush through toxins and sometimes we confuse thirst for hunger. If you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated. This is particularly important when on holiday, busy or under stress.

Real girls tip 4: make healthy dinners in bulk and freeze
I hate processed ready meals and have only had one in the whole of my life. Whilst I appreciate we are all pushed for time, it really doesn’t have to take that long, even if you are cooking for one. When you make meals, make more than one potion so that you can freeze them for a later date. Works particularly well for curries, soups and chilli con carnes.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Bed Head from Tigi ego boost split end mender: review

I admit it, I haven't had my haircut for nearly three months! Gasp. Sorry to any beauty bloggers reading this. But actually, considering I haven't had my ends trimmed, they aren't looking too bad!!! That's thanks to this great new beauty product I have been using - ego boost split end mender from TIGI.

new addition to my beauty products 

leave in conditioner - don't wash it out 

After every hair wash, I add a bit - just a couple of pumps - of the serum to the ends before blow drying. Sure, I still have a few dry, split ends but no where near as many as when I haven't used this product in the past!

not too split ended! 
worth the money 

I also add a couple of squirts of serum to dried hair in between washes to tame flyaways. It was quite pricey, about £13, but I have had it ages, as you only need a small amount each time. I have hardly used the bottle! Well worth the investment I say. It does nothing for your hair but I also love the fun bottle and smell!

X x X

ps, if you are wondering about the weird pink brush in the background, read my blog review here