Monthly Archives: July 2013

Fashionista Custom Pallets

A while ago I wrote a post showing my evening make up for a dinner out and featured my Fashionista pallets.

I didn’t realised until the other week that Fashionista were a brand run by Superdrug themselves as it comes across quite edgy and inline with more expensive brands.

The premise of the brand is based on the eyeshadows and blushes which come in individual cases or can be easily popped out and put into their pallets making them totally customisable.

You buy the pallet and then add 4 shades of your choosing. The range of shades is huge adding up to 13 million combinations apparently.

When I bought them the shades were £4 each and you could fill a pallet for £10 I think. Now the pallets are only £2 each and so are the colours. You can buy them here… (link)

Anyway here are my pallets. I’m a bit OCD so my pallets had to be all blush or all eyeshadow.

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I love the ltd edition PPQ leopard print pallet. I wanted a neutral pallet specifically as most of my eye colours are brights or pastels.

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Nude is a creamy beige matt shade, ideal for a base colour.
Earth Star is mid tone copper colour – very similar to Mac Woodwinked.
Subtle Glamour is a cooler darker shimmery brown.
Nude Glimmer is my go to cant really be bothered with make up shade! It’s a shimmery nude, great with winged liner and a bright lip.

Here are some swatches.

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And a little look created with them.

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Now for the blushes.

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Juicy Apricot is a lovely shimmery coral, not too shiny and gives a lovely healthy flush.
London erm also a shimmery coral….bit shinier but not a lot different!
Butterscotch is a matt mid tone bronzer shade. You could contour with this if you felt so inclined.
Rose Glow is a matt pink, looks scary in the pan, healthy on the cheeks!
Any of the photos of my face on this blog I am wearing one or other of theses colours!

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Overall the quality of these products is excellent. They last well as perform comparably to some of my high end products. The convenience of the pallets is brilliant for holidays and the shade range is huge.

Definitely worth a few pounds in my opinion. I did buy these myself and use them very regularly.

What do you think? Do you fancy making your own pallet?

Fitness gear on a budget

The blogging community seems to have gone fitness crazy at the moment with photos of polar watches every which way you turn.

Every day I am inspired by the ladies of the blogosphere/twitter/Instagram to get up and keep pushing my own fitness.

However I am sure I am not the only one who feels much more inspired to exercise with some new gym kit. The slight sticking point with this is I have a notoriously short attention span and therefore cannot justify hundreds of pounds on the latest Nike Free Runs….though I do still badly want that neon pair.

So I thought I’d improvise a bit and show you what I wear to the gym (the whole outfit costs less than those trainers)

First off trainers. Now Nike Frees do look very cool but what do they actually do for your feet? Well Frees are meant to emulate the action of running barefoot, this to a new runner like me sounds totally terrifying….. Anyway I wasn’t going to spend £100 on some trainers for a sport I wasn’t sure I was going to stick with.

Enter the Puma Faasfoam 350s

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They may not look quite so cool but they also offer a barefoot type feel. If you aren’t a trainer geek, they offer moderate support, they are light and quite springy meaning you can run quicker…I said you not me….

If you want to know about over probation and all that jazz then get yourself to a running shop stat.

Anyway i felt they would be much improved by adding some neon….

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Et voila. Pimped out trainers for an extra £2.50 from Sports Direct. The trainers were £29.99 from TK Maxx.

Next up another essential piece of foundation for us ladies who exercise…. The sports bra. Buy the best you can afford and the highest impact. If you have any kind of boobs and don’t want them round your knees…. Nothing makes me cringe more than girls in push up bras in the gym. Anyway I recommend either good old M and S (there extra high impact ones are often in the sale – avoid the ones with a zip front though unless you want a hello boys moment on the treadmill) or Shock Absorber.

For me this is a case of getting what you pay for, you need to invest a bit in the correct support for both your feet and your boobs.

Now the trouble with sensible support is it isn’t the most fun to wear. My solution to this is layering!

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These bright seamfree bra tops from Primark are a steal at £2.50. They aren’t the best for support but over a ‘proper’ sports bra they add a bit of colour.

The grey vest top is another TK Maxx buy. These performance fabrics are brilliant at keeping sweat away from your body. I used to run in just a cheap t shirt but these are so much more comfortable and lightweight. Buy a size up if you want a little bit of bum coverage.

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Here is an example of my gym get up. My trousers are 3/4 length puma ones which are also moisture wicking. Top tip, buy ones with a draw string so that you don’t have to keep yanking them up. Between this and the zip front bra you get the impression an evening at the gym with me is a right laugh don’t you….
I am a little by disappointed that my sweat band doesn’t show in this photo but yes they are useful and yes it is pink.

Lastly I mentioned earlier the polar watch phenomenon. I don’t have one I have a Tesco One Body Heart Rate Monitor which costs £19.99 (now £15! link!)

It measures calorie burn, heart rate, fat burn etc and seems to do the job perfectly adequately! I’ve no idea if it is more or less accurate than a polar but I tend to take all calorie burn readings with a pinch of salt.

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Here is mine after burning 1000 calories in the gym….no I don’t know why that was necessary either….

Do you think neon helps you run faster? Have you been caught up in the fitness frenzy? What do you think of my budget outfits?

Spicy chicken and rice salad

I thought I’d share with you one of our favourite weeknight dinners. This is one of those healthy quick meals which you can throw together of an evening in about 15 mins and still feel virtuous.

A few weeks ago for lunch I bought this Tesco Moroccan Chicken and rice salad.

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(Image source Tesco.com)

I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to recreate it myself.

Here is how to make my version which is a bit more Mexican!

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Here is what you need.

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1 pack chicken breast pieces. These were garlic and herb but it doesn’t matter really.
1 pack Uncle Ben’s Express Long Grain and Wild rice. (If you aren’t lazy like me you can cook your own wild rice but trust me this is much quicker!)
Some fajita seasoning
Salad veg ( this is rocket, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, some ordinary lettuce)
1 pack coriander
2 limes
2 peppers.
Fat free Greek yogurt (or any plain yogurt)
Tomato purée
Salt

Chop your peppers into chunks, open our chicken and get a pan on a medium heat
Chuck them into the pan, add about a tablespoon of tomato purée, juice of half a lime and about a teaspoon of fajita seasoning.

Stir it around a bit and leave to cook through, add a splash of water if it gets a bit sticky.

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You want to be left with a dry mixture which is coated in a spicy gloop.

Meanwhile put your rice in the microwave following the instructions.

Chop your salad leaves and veg and half the bunch of coriander, squeeze over the half of the lime and toss together.

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Once the rice has cooled slightly add that to the mixture. You want the salad to slightly warm and wilt but not totally.

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Spread it over a platter or on to individual plates if you don’t fancy the Jamie Oliver style of presentation.

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Now prepare your dressing. This is the bit that brings everything together.

Add about 100grms of yogurt to a bowl, another tablespoon of tomato purée, 2 teaspoons of fajita seasoning, a pinch of salt, the juice of the other lime and a splash of water.

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Stir it up til it’s smooth.

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Chop in the coriander

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Stir that in and maybe a splash more of water to make it fairly runny.

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Pile up the cooled chicken on top of the rice/salad mixture.

Then dot the dressing all over

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You can serve it at this point or sprinkle with some low fat grated cheese (cheese and spicy is always good right?)

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You can serve with bread if you are giving this to a man or yesterday’s left over tapas bits if you are me…

Enjoy! Let me know if you make it and like it!

Saturday summary no. 7

Here’s this week’s summary of great stuff!

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Beach running sunrise….sorry to the people on the beach who had clearly spent the night there and wanted me to take their photo….if its quarter to 6 in the morning and I’m running I CANNOT STOP.

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Post gym Twinkie (sorry, not sorry)

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Super pretty balloon and trees combo in the gardens.

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These Tesco feta dip things are so worth 140kcals. I could eat on everyday…. I haven’t just to clarify…

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New haircut…

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Genuine American goodies all the way from the Midwest

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Wanting a yacht to sail off in.

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First ever overnight oats ( based on this Nic’s Nutrition recipe

)

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Choosing a wine for its label….

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Homemade tapas

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More sky photos.

Hope you have all had a great week… And no I haven’t eaten the M and Ms yet…

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And for next week if someone could please get me a baby jaguar….

Bright summer lip colours

So you have seen my summer nail choices now how about some lipsticks?

My summer make up is pretty simple due to laziness/heat exhaustion/being tired!

My favourite make up look of the moment is a neutral eye with black liner, bronzer and a bright lip.

Here are some of my favourites.

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As you can see its about the pinks and corals!

First up Viva Glam Gaga, the palest and least wearable of the lot really, this is a lustre finish and a lilac pink colour. It does cling to any imperfections and apply it too heavily and you look like you have escaped from Jersey Shore. However it is a fun shade for a night out.

Show Orchid. Everyone should own this. It is bright in your face blue tones pink with a tiny hint of shimmer. Makes your teeth look whiter and your eyes brighter. Instant confidence in a tube.

Viva Glam Nicki. Again not the most wearable. This is a bright pale coral. Has a nasty tendency to make your teeth look a bit yellow but great with a coral blush and definitely a unique shade.

Sleek Coral Reef. Simple orangey bright coral. Wearable and knocks your socks off.

Rimmel Kate 110. Slightly more red toned than Coral Reef but really they are very similar. Very long lasting.

Mac Impassioned. Bright pinky coral. Your mum will hate this. Lasts entire days and definitely a crowd stopper.

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Swatches with flash.

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And without. Please excuse the ginger tail in the background….the cat thought this was a game made up for him!

My favourites? Show Orchid and Impassioned. They aren’t for the faint hearted but they are brilliant summer shades.

Any of these take your fancy? What is your summer make up look?

Barry M Gelly Nail Paint Prickly Pear

Yes it’s another one of the Barry M Gelly Nail Paints. I promise I am not sponsored by them and I have indeed bought them all myself.

This was one of the first release colours and is possibly my favourite.

Prickly Pear is a gorgeous milky lavender blue and looking at it on my hand makes me happy.

I wish Barry M would make a few more pastel shades in this formula. I love the brights but softer shades are a little more work appropriate.

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Steamcream

My skin saviour since February has been Steamcream.

Due to a slight travel disaster I have recently repurchased so I thought I would give it a little review.

Over the winter I had a total nightmare with my skin. Generally I am pretty lucky with it, however a combination of cold, being run down and early mornings over Christmas left it totally over sensitised with a patch of dermatitis which my normal skin care regime couldn’t shift.

My mum bought me Steamcream in an attempt to calm it down and since I started using it my skin is back to normal.

Steamcream is made down the road from me in Poole by the parent company of Lush. It isn’t available from Lush stores and is actually pretty tricky to get hold of. You can get it in John Lewis and a few independents but I got mine from Beauty Naturals where it is £11.99 with free delivery in the UK.

Steamcream is made by fusing natural ingredients with steam. It is extremely light but moisturising and penetrates deep into your skin. It also comes in super cute limited edition tins which are made in Japan.
It contains…..
Oatmeal Infusion
Orange Flower Water
Almond Oil
Cocoa Butter
Jojoba Oil
Lavender Oil
Chamomile Blue Oil
Orange Blossom
Absolute Rose
Absolute Neroli Oil
So as you can tell it smells great!

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My tin is the fleur version.

Word of warning though if travelling you may want to put the tin in a zip lock bag…. Though the rest of my toiletries are VERY moisturising!