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Wedding Wednesday: The Engagement Party

Engagement Tea Party – Saturday 19th September 2015 Last Saturday we held our engagement party at our house, we spent the day with around ...

28/02/2014

Beauty: EcoTools Brushes

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I am a long-time fan of EcoTools, the majority of my brushes are by them and they are the one’s that I use most often. They are fabulous quality, apply make-up flawlessly and wash well – dream brushes. Oh and they’re super affordable too. I picked up my first EcoTools brushes in the clearance section of TK Maxx about four years ago and since then I haven’t looked back, I’m particularly fond of their eye shadow brushes but the face range is awesome too.

I really love the Tapered Blush Brush as it is the perfect size and shape to fit into the hollows of the cheeks, it works particularly well with powder blush but I have also used it to blend out cream products. Another favourite is the Custom Coverage Buffing Brush* which I use for my foundation, it is a lovely flat top brush which isn’t too firm so it blends liquid products really well – no streaks here! I also enjoy the Deluxe Concealer Brush* for patting product onto blemishes, I have also been using this to apply eyeshadow to my eyelids. I love every single one of the eye brushes that I own by EcoTools especially the blending brushes.

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I am working on replacing all of my current brushes with EcoTools ones as they really are the best, I even prefer them to my MAC brushes which cost a lot more money. EcoTools brushes are very good quality for money and they are even cheaper in the USA – make sure you check them out.

You can purchase EcoTools brushes in Boots in the UK online and in store.

Have you tried EcoTools out yet?

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24/02/2014

Nails: Vintage Red Leather

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Maybelline Color Show Vintage Leather Nail Polish – Red Relic - £2.99

I bought this nail polish ages ago and I’d never worn it until last week, I don’t know if it’s available any more as I think the Vintage Leather collection was limited edition but keep an eye out in Boots for it. I chose the red shade as I love red nail polish and I was intrigued by the leather effect. It pretty much just gives a matte look to the nails with a few pearlescent chunks of glitter that pick the light up. I really love the orangey red shade and think it will look perfect in summer, I will probably wear a shiny top coat over it though as I don’t really like matte nails.

What do you think to matte nails?

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23/02/2014

Money: Spending Ban Week 4

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From my bank statement:

  • £11 in Tesco – I bought a magazine and some snacks
  • £20 out of bank – To pay for Nandos
  • £24 in Morrisons – A weekly shop to get food for dinners in the week
  • £20 out of bank – Spent on the bus to my Mum’s house, lunch with her and Gracie and some groceries

This week I’ve been off work, this means I’ve saved money on my bus fare and on snacks after work. I have tried to stick to the rules this week, I’ve not spent any money on any make-up or beauty items and I’ve not bought any new clothes. I did buy a magazine though which cost £5. I have spent a little bit on buses this week but not as much as if I’d been at work so I’m happy about that. I’ve managed to spend around £50 on food and snacks though which is a little bit ridiculous, I did do a proper food shop in Morrisons and got food for my meals this week and next. Around £15 was spent on Nandos too, it’s a little treat when me and the boy go there and I don’t regret a penny of it. I have a problem with having cash in my purse, if I get money out of the bank and it’s in my purse I will spend it, I need to do a bit more planning in advance I think so I don’t just spend it all on sweets.

Thank you all for the support and advice in the comments too, you are all very helpful. This week when I’m back at work I’m going to leave my purse at home to try to curb my spending after work. It’s pay day on Friday and I’m going to try and be sensible with my wages and keep track of how much I am spending – we’ll see how long that lasts.

Does anyone have any tips on saving money on groceries?

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21/02/2014

Life: Warner Bros. Studio Tour The Making of Harry Potter

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In January I visited the Warner Bros. Studio Tour for the second time, the first time I went it was April but I wanted to visit again during winter as they do ‘Hogwarts at Christmas’ where they bring out all the festive props and put snow everywhere. I wanted a second visit as the first time I think I was too excited to look at things properly and I missed lots of bits out. After going twice though I don’t think I need to go again, not for a while anyway…
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The first place you enter after the cinema is the Great Hall, it’s truly amazing in there and it was used for all 7 of the films it is featured in. I loved seeing all the props on the tables and how much detail everything had, I obviously enjoyed the Slytherin area most of all. You don’t get long in the Great Hall as other tours are happening but you can go back in there once the next tour has come in. I like The Big Room best as it’s where all the different sets are, all the little props are in there too. I also like Diagon Alley but it feels a little rushed in there as it’s a walkway to other parts of the tour. The outside exhibits were much more enjoyable in summer and the daytime. I wasn’t particularly fussed by the Art Department & Creature Effects but that area shows how the special effects were achieved and how the animatronic creatures work. The area which makes most people go wow is the Model Room, this is where the model of Hogwarts is that is used in the films, it is huge and is so detailed it’s quite breath taking. When we went in January it was covered in snow too which made it look even more magical. The Hogwarts model is the last part of the tour before the shop, the shop is amazing it sells pretty much everything a Harry Potter fan could ever need clothes, mugs, sweets,  wands, books, school uniform… It is very pricey though so if you’re planning a visit I’d save up some money to buy a souvenir.
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I would say that if you are a Harry Potter fan that the Warner Bros. Studio Tour is a must-see it’s a great day out and leaves you feeling excited about HP again. I have had to go and watch the films again after each time I’ve visited the studio tour to see if I can spot any of the things I saw ‘backstage’.
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  • Tickets cost £30 for adults, £22.50 for children and a family ticket will set you back £89
  • The nearest train station is Watford Junction and you can catch the Harry Potter bus from there for £2 return
  • Tours are bookable from 9 til 6:30 and the exhibition closes at around 10pm
  • Open every day except Christmas and Boxing Day
  • There are several seasonal surprises throughout the year including: Animal Actors, Feathers and Flight, Wand Week and Christmas at Hogwarts
Have you visited the Warner Bros. Studio Tour yet?
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19/02/2014

Skincare: Organic Surge Overnight Sensation Night Cream

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Organic SurgeOvernight Sensation Night Cream - £8.99*

Organic Surge are one of my favourite skincare companies, not only are their products cruelty free but they are effective too. Every product that I have tried I have enjoyed, I especially love their facial skincare products but the body and hair products are fab too. The Overnight Sensation Night Cream caught my interest because I have never been a fan of night creams before, I just never remember to moisturise before bed, and I thought that if anyone could convince me it would be Organic Surge.

Organic-Surge-Night-CreamThe Overnight Sensation Night Cream is 98.99% natural and is untouched by harsh chemicals, it’s paraben, SLS and artificial colourants and fragrance free. It promises to restore and revitalise the skin, and create a smooth and supple complexion. It can be used on all skin types and is suitable for use by vegans and vegetarians.

My first impressions were that the product has a nice scent that is fresh but not too strong, it’s quite a thick consistency and a little bit goes a long way. When I applied it for the first time I noticed that the product didn’t sink into the skin straight away and that this was perfect for a night cream. When I woke up the next morning I noticed that my skin felt soft and smooth, it was ready for makeup application and there was no residue left behind. After using the product for a few weeks I have noticed that my skin is more radiant and that I do not need to use a moisturiser in the morning, the cream did not aggravate any of my blemishes and didn’t cause any new breakouts.

For only £8.99 I would definitely recommend this night cream, it’s the perfect addition to your skincare routine.

Have you tried any Organic Surge products?

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London Fashion Week: Day 5 Highlights

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The final day of London Fashion Week and what a day? I really enjoyed the three collections above, the SIMONGAO dresses are classic pieces that would suit anyone and would work for casual or smart occasions. The Simone Rocha collection was a particular highlight for me, I loved the classic shapes and the pop of red in the tartan. The Anya Hindmarch collection has probably gained the most press attention today, I do love those bags. They remind me of Pop Art from the 60s and 70s.

What were your highlights from Day 5?

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18/02/2014

London Fashion Week: The Best of Day 4

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Day 4 of London Fashion Week is over, and to be honest nothing really wowed me. I did see a few coats that caught my eye though, again oversized was the general theme of the day with outerwear. I’m loving the classic wool coats by Burberry Prorsum, the crossover fronts on the Whistles jackets and the tartan pattern on the Giles one. Couldn’t not feature the classic leather jacket from Giles too, a staple in every girls wardrobe.

I’m excited to see what the final day of London Fashion Week has for us today, I’m excited to see the Meadham Kirchhoff show.

What did you think to Day 4 of London Fashion Week?

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17/02/2014

Love Me Beauty Box: February 2014 Reviews

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Love Me Beauty Box – February 2014 – Menu 2*

I have been trying out the products from the February Love Me Beauty box for the past week and can now give a short review on each. I really enjoyed the products in this months box, there is a good mixture of items with something for hair, body and make-up.

For more details on Love Me Beauty check out this post: http://www.paperbacksandpostcards.com/2014/02/love-me-beauty-box-february-2014.html

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Percy & Reed – Dry Conditioner

I’ve used this product a couple of times since I received it last week, I was a little confused about how to use it at first but then I read that it is supposed to be used as a sort of shine spray for dry hair. My hair isn’t particularly dry but I used it on day old hair when the shine has all disappeared and it did add a bit of gloss to the lengths, it made my hair manageable and didn’t weigh it down. I will not repurchase this item as I don’t think I will really use it, maybe it will be good for festivals or weekends away when I don’t have time to wash my hair.

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La Claree Oliv - Ultra Melting Body Milk

I’ve been using this body lotion on my elbows and hands for the past week, the formula is lovely it’s thick but not too greasy. It sinks into the skin quickly and leaves it feeling nourished. I did have issues getting the product out of the bottle though, the full size of this comes in a little jar so that wouldn’t be a problem. I don’t think I will repurchase this either, I have a lot of body lotions and moisturisers to use up and even though this is a good product it’s nothing special.

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Inner Me – Beautify Me Vitamin Complex

I have started taking these and haven’t noticed a difference so far, I am only half way through the packet though. If these make any difference to my skin, hair or nails I will report back.

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The Bakewell Soap Company – Multi-Purpose Pocket Balm

I’ve been using this product on my lips this week, I’m a complete lip balm hoarder so I welcome any additions to the family. This balm can also be used on your body and nails. It is nicely scented, a sort of herbal citrus type fragrance that is quite relaxing. The formula is lovely, quite thick but once it warms on your skin it melts in quickly. I will use the rest of this tin up but I won’t repurchase it, I prefer a thicker intensive balm like Carmex.

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Art Deco – Hydra Lip Booster – Translucent Wood Rose

This item was the mystery product in this months box and I have to say, I love it! I am not usually a lip gloss fan but the colour of this is perfect for work it’s a natural rose shade. The gloss isn’t sticky at all and it applies evenly, it sticks around on the lips for quite a while too. I wore this to a job interview this week and I love the look it gave on my lips, not too glossy but hydrated and juicy looking.

For me this box was a good one, it provided a range of items I hadn’t tried out before and I probably wouldn’t have if they weren’t included. Definitely go out and get one of the Art Deco Hydra Lip Boosters!

Did you try out Love Me Beauty this month?

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London Fashion Week: Picks from Day 3

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Day 3 of London Fashion Week has been and gone, and what a day! How do we feel about the Cara Delevingne collection for Mulberry? I’m not a huge fan to be honest. I really enjoyed the Vivienne Westwood Red Label show, especially the vibrant coloured coats – the mustard one above is a beaut. Speaking of coats, oversized outerwear was everywhere today, and is a trend that will transfer well to the high street. I’m loving all of the trouser and skirt suits that are around this season too, again another trend that we can expect to see come Autumn. I also loved the neck scarves featured in the Paul Smith show, I have a collection of vintage scarves that don’t get enough love so I’m glad to see they’re having a come back!

What did you think to Day 3?

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16/02/2014

Money: Spending Ban Week 3

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This week I don’t feel like I’ve done too badly, I haven’t ventured to the shops after work at all which is definitely an improvement on last week. I have probably spent too much money on food again though, I really need to get out of the habit of going to the shop to get snacks when I’m hungry. I am off work this week which will either be good for the spending or terrible – depending on whether I go to the shops out of boredom or not. I am going to see my friend on Monday so will need some pennies for that but it shouldn’t be too pricey. I get paid in two weeks and I do not have a very lot of money left at all, it’s gonna be a tight couple of weeks. I am waiting for a couple of refunds from ASOS though and my brother owes me some money so hopefully they will pay up whilst I’m feeling the pinch.

Does anyone have any money saving tips?

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15/02/2014

London Fashion Week: The Best of Day 2

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Day 2 of London Fashion Week was a winner for me, so many cute dresses and shoes. Orla Kiely is always a winner, everything in the new collection is adorable – the white dress above actually has little cats printed on it. I also love the white tights and T-bar shoes combo. I really enjoyed Markus Lupfer too, the collection is very wearable – loving those flared skirts. Longer skirts caught my eye at Sibling, Holly Fulton and John Rocha. The embellishment on the Rocha skirt is beautiful and would be perfect for winter.

*All images taken from Vogue UK
Which shows did you enjoy from Day 2?
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