Monday, 30 May 2011

Introducing: Pepperberry

You've probably already heard of them, because I have not actually opened a glossy magazine without one of their catalogues falling out over the last few weeks, but the team behind the lingerie retailer Bravissimo have come out with a new line of clothing designers for the bigger girl, Pepperberry.

As I, as well as any other girl out there with a slightly more generous chest will know, finding clothes that fit and are not too tight on top, but then don't swamp us everywhere else is a complete nightmare, so I was really excited when I found their catalogue and placed an order. 
Their sizes work so that you order your usual high street size, and then select if you want the bust to be curvy, really curvy or super curvy. 
They have a small range of dresses and fitted tops and shirts, and I hope they expand their range - there were quite a few dresses I saw that I would have totally loved if they'd been available in a different colour most dresses are one colour only. I decided to go for the first blue jewel dress. Everything is quite reasonably priced, it was £55. 
They all come nicely wrapped up in the post in boxes, and considering they offer free exchanges and returns you don't have to rip anything to get into it which would make it harder to wrap back up and send off again if you wanted to. 
I initially ordered it as an evening dress, but has no idea what it would be like. Since placing the order I actually fell in love with another dress for the occasion while I was waiting for it, but decided to open it up anyway and make the decision as it if I'd return it or try to justify keeping it! 
It turns out it did not really suit me and I was not entirely happy with it, but it was a very nice dress, and though the fabric was a bit clingy, it was not bad for the price. I will be ordering from Pepperberry again, because the bust area fit perfectly, and it was a comfortable pleasure to try on. I think they need to work on their collection a bit more, but they really have a good thing going launching this line.

Has anyone else ordered anything from Pepperberry yet?

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Weekly Love - Week 69

+ My Mummy's birthday. I got her these tulips, and my Dad and I took her for a lovely meal at Deeson's British Restaurant.

+ Gala Darling gets a Japanese Calgel manicure. It takes 3 hours, lasts 3 weeks, but is bloody amazing!

+ Amy asks if blogging is just about selling your lifestyle?

+ Amy also has written a fantastic post about surviving your first year at university.

+ Getting my hands on my Superdrug points card. I love loyalty cards - they save so much money in the long run, and this one has a mirrored surface for quick makeup touch ups!

+ Carlinn has posted the most incredibly colourful outfit and makeup post I've ever seen.

+ Playing around with some of the products in the second wave of the new Benefit b.right skincare collection at the Benefit counter.

+ These songs: She Wouldn't Be Gone, Honey Bee
+ Having a full fruit bowl on my desk to snack on. When my Mum saw me she said I'd lost some weight off of my face. Apparently this is good, and eating only fresh fruit and Graze Boxes rather as snacks really works! Though, she did bring me these Hotel Chocolate treats that were lovely!

+ Charlotte Jane has written a really thought provoking post about staying in contact with people.

+ Watching The West Wing in my study breaks.

+ Coco Rocha has Tumblr.

+ Extremely alcoholic chocolates.

+ More from Gala Darling: I love this documentary about her and her blog.

+ Having some lovely conversations with Gem the many times I ran into her this week!

+ Taylor Swift's new music video 'Story of Us' - I went to a school like that!
+ Finishing school for good. Every. No school. Ever, ever again. I can't believe it. Obviously I still have to go back for exams and graduation, but.... wow. We had a wild time on the last day. Yes, that is a first year wrapped in cling film. 

+ Having the last ever day of Saturday school in my life. I've had to go to school on a Saturday since I was 7 years old. That is the last 11 years. The concept of a weekend has been totally alien to me up until now, and it's such a good feeling I'll never have to do that again!

+ Doing jigsaw puzzles with my English teacher's three year old.

+ A history of the red soled shoe.

+ Katy Perry is making a music video for 'Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F)' - it's my favourite song of of the album, so much so I even asked for the O.P.I nail shade named after it for my birthday!

+ 31 ideas for a blog post.

+ Getting my giveaway package in the post from Jess. The parcel disconcerted me for a moment - our handwriting is scarily similar!

What have you guys been enjoying this week?

Thursday, 26 May 2011

What To Do With Laddered Tights

I don't even ladder my tights or get holes in them as much as some people, but as I wear a pair of black tights almost every day, I find I'm always throwing pairs away, and sometimes if I've been unlucky after wearing them only once. No, my tights are at least £2.50 a pair, usually more, and to even get them at this price I have to buy them in big, pricy packs. So, a while back I decided to start playing around with my old tights and see what I could make out of them: and it was then when I struck gold. 
These, as pictured above, is the reason that except for a pair of French ruffle luxe scrunchies, I have not bought any hair ties etc. for the last two years. Once laddered, I put my tights back into the wash and then cut them up into scrunchies. 
Literally all you'll need to do this is your old pairs of tights and a pair of sharp scissors. 
They have brilliant stretch and hold your hair up really well with minimal ridges. Also, if you cut from further up the leg where the tight leg is a bit wider you can make hair hands to keep your hair out of your face when washing or applying makeup. Most of my tights are 40 denier, and these work okay, but I find 60 denier tights make the best, longer lasting bands with more stretch and hold. 
I never really measure the sections I cut, but they need to be this sort of size. You'll get about 3 sections out of each leg, but don't use sections with holes or ladders in, cut around them. 
Once you have your section, just gather it together into a hair tie shape and you're done!

You can also used your old tights to make bath bombs, air fresheners and as scrub cloths. You can take a foot section, cut a sock shape and fill it with dried lavender, oats, grated soap, any mixed to make your bath smell good, tie a knot in the open end and drop it into the hot water. Similarly, put lots of nice smelling things in and pop it in your sock drawer to make everything smell good! I take a clean section of these hair ties and, stretching it over my fingertip dip it in olive oil and use my tight covered finger to gently exfoliate and remove dry skin from my lips. I also do the same on dry skin areas of my face, very gently, while wet and using a foaming cleanser. 

Have you found any fun or useful things to do with an old pair of tights? 

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Product Review: Nars Orgasm Illuminator

In my May GlossyBox I revived a deluxe sample size of Nars' Orgasm Illuminator. I don't use highlighter/ illuminator on a daily basis, but I always add it to an evening look, or when my skin needs a little bit of a pick me up (I don't wear foundation or any form of tinted moisturiser, just cream concealer). 
I'd read good things about this product, so I was very excited to try it. It is much lighter than any other liquid highlighter I've ever used, and goes much further. It has a lovely pinky peach sheen with flecks of gold. 
As I said, a tiny bit goes miles and it is very, very discreet. It does give my skin that healthy glow I love from my other highlighters, but I'm not sure if it is as good as some of them, even though it has a really discreet, barley there apricot smell, it goes on barley there and it does not feel heavy to wear at all, exactly what I look for as I'm not used to having my product covering up my skin.
I think liquid highlighter is the best, though I do like the Topshop powered ones (not pictured) as they're only £8 and go miles, though I do find that the power tends to collect on dry skin patches, and you need a really good brush to apply them properly. I think the Benefit highlighters, High beam and Moon Beam are better than the Nars Orgasm Illuminator, they tend to give skin a more polished look, and the silver pink of High Beam and Golden Pink of Moon Beam caters to the two types of highlighter you could ever want. However, one area where the Nars product is much, much better is that the Benefit highlighters tend to collet on dry patches of skin, and because they are quite think you need to be careful to get an even sheen. Both of these problems are non issues with the Nars highlighter. Also the Nars did have that peachy sheen you don't get with the others which is lovely, and as I don't wear foundation it makes my blusher stay on longer.

After a few days of use I have been won around to it a bit more. I have actually won it every day since I received it, something that has surprised me that it has become part of my routine already. 
left to right: Benefit High Beam, Benefit Moon Beam, Nars Orgasm Illuminator

A full sized bottle of this costs £21.50, which I think is excellent value, if you think about how far it goes and how much you get in the bottle compared to the £18.50 for Benefit highlighters where you get much less product in the bottle (that being said, its not that much of a difference, as Benefit also goes so far that I'm not even halfway through my first ever bottle of High Beam, I got it 3 years ago, and I have another full one in my drawer. I'll never *have* to buy highlighter ever again I don't think!)

Have any of you tried any of the Nars Illuminators? What did you think of them? 

Monday, 23 May 2011

Places To Eat In Canterbury: Deeson's British Resturant

For my mothers birthday yesterday my Dad and I took her to Deeson's British Restaurant on Palace Street, Canterbury. 
Everything they serve is British and locally sourced. Even most of the wine list was made up of English wines. 
So many of my friends had recommended it to me, and as it was either this or the new French restaurant opposite I booked this, as French when my parents had just got back from France might have been a bit of overkill!
The food was sublime. This was my started of warm fried wood pigeon breast with par boiled quails eggs and black and white pudding.  
My Dad had free range chicken terrine with pickles and toast. 
And my Mum had one of her favourites, breaded scallops with bacon and roe cream. 
This was my main course, lemon sole cooked in butter on a bed of mashed potato, capers and buttered spinage. I had not had a really, really nice well cooked piece of whole white fish, which is one of my favourite dishes and I enjoyed it immensely. 
My mothers lamb, cooked in three different ways on a bed of seasonal vegetables. 
I had dark chocolate moose with a homemade chocolate chip cookie and citrus jelly for dessert. 
My Mum had Canterbury tart, which is apples and lemons. 
Overall we had a fantastic meal and I'd really recommend the place to anyone who happens to be in the Canterbury area for lunch. 

What was the last really great meal you had out?

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Weekly Love - Week 68

+ Getting my hands on the 'Young Hollywood' issue of NYLON - best issue ever! Also, the new edition of Company. 

+ Watching 'An Education'. It was such an incredible film, that spoke to me in so many different ways. If you've never seen it, watch it.

+ This documentary filmed about Jazzabelle's Diary.

+ Getting sweet, lovely emails from readers. If you have a moment, send a quick tweet or email to your favourite blogger, let her know how much you love her blog and appreciate her posts, and make her day! 
+ Carrot, seed and cream cheese muffins.

+ This week I reviewed Michael McIntyre's autobiography over at Judging Covers - I could not recommend it more!

+ Spending some of my birthday book vouchers on paperbacks I've been wanting to read to take on my two French trips this summer. First: One Day by David Nicholls, Room by Emma Donoghue and American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis. I know, what a combination!

+ Buzznet interviews Taylor Momson about her style, her music and what she'd name her pet unicorn - I've actually started to really like her since I went to a Pretty Reckless gig last year...

+ My Mummy bringing me a bag full of juicy strawberries, grapes, bananas, chocolate and fresh bagels. I love her so much!
+ My GlossyBox arriving on Thursday!

+ Thanks for all of your wonderful suggestions for what do do about my really dry feet on my post about the Lush Fairtrade Foot Cream - I'm gradually working my way through them, and I'll let you know how I get on!

+ Listening to a lot of Blake Shelton.

+ Julliette talks about blogging platforms beyond Blogger. She also mentions me in this post - thank you!

What have you all been enjoying this week?

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Introducing: Glossybox

When I read Jess' post about Glossybox, and after seeing the similar Birchbox on some American and Canadian blogs, I decided to treat myself to the first ever Glossybox. Basically, for £10 a month you get sent a box full of deluxe samples of new products from high end brands.
My box arrived this morning. I literally could not be more excited about opening it up. 
The box is really pretty, and sturdy, and has a lovely inside too. I don't own any myself, but being my mothers daughter I can certify that this box is better quality than a Jimmy Choo shoebox. I will be keeping my GlossyBoxes to store things in! 
When I opened the box the beautiful packaging prevailed. I also got a glimpse of the menu and saw the word 'Nars'. Then got very, very excited. I've been wanting to try their products for absolutely ages! The little white square you can se under the menu is a 20% discount card for one of the products inside. 
Yes more amazing packaging. Think about how much gift boxes like this cost in Paperchase, and you've got your £10 with the packaging, let alone with the product!
I've been wanting to try Nars Orgasm Illuminator for ages, and this sample is absolutely huge! And the full size, about twice the size of this retails at £21.50 - already a bargain for the box! I'm going to post some separate reviews for the products in the box, but I promise this one will be the first up as I'm so excited to try it! *edit* (1/06/11) You can read my review here!
I'm a big lipstick girl so I was also very excited to find this All For Eve bright red lipstick in 'Eve Red'. It looks very fluorescent in this photo (sorry!) but it is actually what looks like a bright true red with a bit of darker under pigment. The photo did not come out very well, but I scribbled a little bit on the back of my hand and the darkness of the red comes out a bit - I can't wait to try this, and hopefully I'll be reviewing it too!
I'm not really a cleanser girl, but I'll give this Bionova Bioactive Cleanser a go because you never know about a product until you've tried it!

*edit* (19/05/11) I tried some of this with water, and it did not foam much but it did leave my skin very, very clean. However, it left it a bit funny smelling (the product itself is funny smelling), and feeling very very dry. My skin still felt dry after my usual Clinique Moisture Surge, so I had to use a heavier moisturiser afterwards. 
I was also very excited about this Caviar Anti-Aging Colour Hold Rapid Repair (hair) Spray from Alterna, as I'm on a constant quest for products that help me maintain my salon finish.  My hair damages easily (I don't eat dairy so I don't think I get enough calcium) and my hair is partially coloured, so this seems like the perfect product!

I tried a bit of this just now, and it smells absolutely incredible. It also makes my hair much glossier and finer, does exactly what it says to do on the bottle - my hair does look instantly revitalised. I could really see why it is for coloured hair; I have partial head highlights, and the coloured sections looked more vibrant and healthier. My only problem is that it appears to come out a bit heavy and clump a bit on my hair, but then again my hair already has had leave in products put in it since I last washed it - I'll be sure to try it again on untreated hair. 
This is the product that comes with the discount code, and I'm always on the hunt for moisturisers and lotions that deal with my dry skin. This one smells very, very strong in the bottle, but nice, which can be a good or a bad thing, we'll see (reminds me a bit of Molton Brown), but I'll let you know how I get on!

*edit* (19/05/11) This moisturiser has a gorgeous, silky and moisturising texture. I really love it. However, the scent is so overpowering, I don't really like this product in spite of its fantastic formula. 

Has anyone else received a GlossyBox? Is anyone going to sign up for the June one? I don't think I'll get one every month, as it will get expensive, but I'm getting one in June and I'm going to save it to open after my last exam as a gift to myself!

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Product Review: Lush Fair Trade Foot Lotion

I have real problems with my feet. They are a funny shape, they hate shoes and dry skin is a big problem! I'm still on a hunt for the right foot cream to help with the dryness, so as I'm having a bit of a love affair with Lush products at the moment I decided to pick up a pot of their Fair Trade Foot Lotion in store and give it a go!
You get quite a big tub, but it is still quite expensive at £8.35 a tub. When I opened it I was pleasantly surprised by the lovely pretty pink colour, as well as the lovely minty smell. Some other foot creams and lotions I have tried have been more menthol than minty, and I have always wanted to wash my hands after application because I did not like the smell. However, with this lotion I don't have an urge to wash my hands afterwards because of the smell!
As far a what it has done for my feet, I'm afraid to say, inspire of my official happiness with the product it does not work. It does not moisturize me feet and it leaves them still feeling dry after the first application. After using it for about a week or so I think my feet were worse, more dry and I was more prone to blisters and my skin was peeling. However, I have read some really good reviews of this product, so it might just be up to skin type.  I have dry skin. 

Has anyone else tried this foot lotion? How did you get on? Are there any other foot creams or lotions you'd recommend? 

Monday, 16 May 2011

The Vamoose

Ever since I reviewed their collection for N.E.E.T magazine, I've been head over heels in love with The Vamoose, a UK based jewellery company who craft their pieces out of the finest metals, fabrics and semi precious stones. 
I really want one of their gemstone piece pendants, but I have not found one that is the right length for me yet. 
I also love these simple but stylish bracelets that can be worn on their own or in a stack, for day or for night. 
I'm waiting for there to be some pomp pom necklaces like these in stock, but as bibs rather than pendants, because I just really love how cool and quirky they are! 
I'm also a big fan of their simple pendants - I really want this gold coral piece. They do adorable little acorns too! 

What are your favourite pieces from The Vamoose?