Not Another Bill!: July 2014

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This is my second month of receiving Not Another Bill! Last month I received a beautiful frame and print, and it was gorgeous. After that injection of beauty into my home, I couldn’t wait for my next parcel. This really shows the diversity of N.A.B, as last month was something to decorate my walls, this month is something to decorate my neck!

Studio Fludd is an exciting Italian art collective, taking its name from the English scientist Robert Fludd. This guy is a pretty interesting occultist, working on controversial topics in the 16th – 17th century. Their inspiration is alchemy, manipulating matter and material.

So, this month’s surprise is a multi-faceted Botswana agate stone on a neon thread with a pastel fastening. It came  wrapped in crepe paper inside a pinky screen-printed origami envelope. Not only is the necklace gorgeous, but the packaging is delightful. Opening it really gave me that internal squee feeling of being involved in the pretty!

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I’ve worn this basically every day with every outfit imaginable. Lovely jubbly!


 

At £18 a month, it’s a bit of a pricey subscription, and I don’t think I’d be comfortable spending that much money monthly on a surprise if I wasn’t so convinced of the quality. N.A.B. is deeply concerned with providing the best of the best, though, so I’m quite a happy little subscriber!

What do you guys think? Do you have a subscription or are you tempted to get one? Leave me a comment!! xx

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Birchbox July 2014: Sun, Sea and Sand!

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July already! How did that happen? The summer is just flying by! This month’s Birchbox has a lovely summery vibe, and contains some fantastic products that are already climbing rapidly in my summer top ten! The title of the box is ‘sun, sea and sand,’ which I have been forunate to get a bit of, living on the coast. I, however, have been referring to it as the purple favourite colour alert! box, as there are plenty of lovely violet based tones going on in there.

Models Own: Nail polish in Magenta Divine ~ £5

I am not going to post a picture of my nails wearing this as I would normally because my nails are super unhappy at the moment, and I think a glitter varnish would kill them. However, I think this would make a lovely glittery topcoat, and I can see myself wearing it a lot on my toes. I did test it on my thumb nail, and it spread nice and easily, so no silly glittery clumps to battle against.

Balance Me: Wonder Eye Cream ~ £20 for 15ml

I was very pleased when I heard this was a featured item, as I got a Balance Me face cream as a magazine freebie, and have enjoyed using it. The eye cream is refreshing and easily absorbed. I haven’t noticed much of a difference to my eye area, but that’s not unusual for me. However, I find that even if it’s not visible, it feels good, so I’m sure I’ll use it a fair bit!

Laqa & Co.: Sheer Lip Lube Pencil in Menatour ~ £14

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I love love love this pencil! I’ve been on the hunt for a good purple for such a long time and this is my perfect product. The colour seems to really suit my complexion, and there is a nice gloss to it on the lip. I know I will wear this nearly everyday. It is quite hydrating, and although it doesn’t have major staying-power, it lasts pretty well. Unfortunately it seems to be sold out online, but hopefully it will reappear when I need to replace it!

Benefit: The Porefessional ~ £24.50

I love me some Benefit! I have a bit of a haul I need to post in the next week or so, so I was super excited to open my box and see this! I have heard such great things about this product, but have never considered buying it as my pores aren’t that much of a problem for me. I have been wearing it anyway, as it is a super balm that really melts into the skin and gives it a radiance that means that I feel like I can go without foundation on those days we’ve had recently that have just been too hot. I’m a melter! Therefore I’m thrilled that Birchbox enabled me to encounter the porefessional and to discover how awesome it is!

Whish: Three Whishes Lavender Body Butter ~ £14.50

This is a very light-weight lotion that smooths very easily into the body, feeling very hydrating and with a gentle, more of a hint, of lavender scent. So far this product seems to only be available from Birchbox so that’s quite exciting in itself, n’est pas?

Filosofile: 4-sided Nail Buffer

Onto the French! Take a look at these guys’ website! Lots of cute little things which raise a smile! I’ve not actually used this buffer yet, but I’ve needed a new one for ages, so good timing, Birchbox!


 

Lovely box! A good mix of goodies to play with and to feel fabulous with. The only sad part is I now can’t wait for August! Oh well, patience is a virtue, after all…

How was your box this month? Are you ready for some fun in the some? Leave a comment and let me know!! xx
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Glossybox June 2014

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As many of you will know, I was severely disappointed in last month’s GlossyBox. There was too much variation between individual boxes, and the quality of the products wasn’t great. I wasn’t alone in feeling letdown, and it looks like GlossyBox has really listened to the feedback, as this month’s box is a marvelous improvement! Great value and good variety have produced a seriously impressive GlossyBox this month!

Nailgirls: 3-in-1 Base/Topcoat & Nail Strengthener ~ £13.50 for 15ml  

This is a sort of all purpose nail polish friend that you can use as base and top coat with the idea tht it particularly strengthens the nail. I couldn’t find this on the nailgirls website, but as this is billed as a new launch, that may be because it is a cheeky wee exclusive! It does its job well, and I think I got an extra day or so out of my manicure. This was perfectly timed, as I was just running out of my regular base coat.

Teeez Trend Cosmetics: Beautiful Flat Stiff Brush

How pretty is this brush?! It’s really lovely looking! To be honest, I’m not so keen on the brush itself. It’s a little too hard for me, and doesn’t seem to work so great with my eye shadows. That may be because all of my eye shadows are pretty cheap, but hey ho… I feel it might be quite good for cream shadows, as you’d have lots of control, but I don’t own any, so that’s a shame. I can’t find the brush for sale online, but I have seen a few on ebay.

Embelleze Novex: Brazilian Keratin

Once again, this is something I couldn’t find online! Am I highly incompetent with Google? Maybe! I saw something that might have been it on amazon, but I’m not confident enough to post a link here. It is a great product. You use it on clean, dry hair, applying it evenly and leaving it in for 15mins before washing it out and styling as normal. In that sense, it’s a bit of a faff, but my hair was easily shinier and smoother.

So Susan Cosmetics: Concealer Quad ~ £16.95

The packaging for this2014-07-02 09.25.02 quad is just so cute! I absolutely adore it. Now, my big secret, I don’t use concealer. Never have. Therefore I was quite interested to give this a go – maybe there was something I was missing out on?

The four shade in this palette blend together well, so should suit most skin tones. I found the formula pretty hard, and struggled to create the look I wanted. I’m not sure whether this is typical of concealer or not, so I can’t really comment on it. To be honest, this palette has not sold me on concealer, but I am glad to have it – just in case. It is available from So Susan’s website.

Roger & Gallet: Fleur de Figuier Eau Fraiche ~ £32.00 for 100ml

Mmmm, this smells lovely! Think fresh, spring days in fields with flowers and long white dresses and loose hair and floral headbands. Hehe, quite an image, huh? This is a generous sample, but if you need more, you can get it at Marks & Spencers.


So, this month’s box was a hit for me. It is actually July now how did that happen? and I’m really looking forward to the stars and stripes American themed box coming out in the next few weeks! You can sign up at GlossyBox if you fancy trying it out!

What did you think of this month’s offering? Leave me a comment and let me know! xx
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Birchbox June 2014: Global Strikers

 

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They shoot, they score!

Well, BirchBox has just gone and done it again, putting together another awesome box that really knocks it out of the park! The idea behind this particular box is global beauty, inspired by the World Cup taking place, if you live under a rock, in Brazil! I have to say, I’m not in the slightest a football fan, and when I did try and watch the England game last night, I fell asleep before half-time, but I am loving that the competition means that everyone is suddenly Brazil crazy! There are plenty of Samba beats on the radio, some awesome programmes on the telly, a bit of Beckham, anyone?, and this fantastic Brazilian offering from BirchBox, who’ve even themed their pouch on the hosts colours!!

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But that’s enough rambling from me, let’s get on to the all important products! There seems to have been quite a bit of variation in products this month, but I haven’t seen a box I wouldn’t like to have received yet. There’s a great range of products here, and the little flip-flop key-ring is a really cute accessory that adds that extra bit of fun to the box this month.

BeautyBlender and Solid Cleanser – £26.00

BirchBox really read my mind here, as I’ve been dying to get a hold of one of these for ages! This product also demonstrates why BirchBox is such great value, as already the box price has been matched twice over by the value of the BeautyBlender (representing the US), which you can buy for yourself here! Fabulous! It’s really great to see such an iconic product make an appearance. The idea is the egg shaped sponge can be used for easy stippling, and it’s shape means it can get into hard to reach contours. I haven’t used it myself yet, but I know so many people who swear by it that I just can’t wait! The little box also contains a block of solid cleanser for the sponge – just add some water and you’re good to go. This is great for travelling, as who wants to waste their liquid allowance on make-up brush cleaners?

Naobay Body Radiance Lotion – £12.95 for 250ml

This is a Spanish brand I hadn’t previously heard of, but this lotion contains olive oil, avocado oil, shea butter and aloe, so lots of goodies for the skin! My skin felt lovely and smooth after using this, so I’d really recommend it on that basis, although I wasn’t overly keen on the smell. It didn’t exactly smell bad, but it definitely wasn’t a scent I wanted to sniff all day! However, it does claim to be organic, with 99% of ingredients coming from natural sources, so that’s a good thing. You can pick it up here for slightly less than BirchBox listed it at (£14), and the wooden packaging certainly looks striking!

 TheBalm Cosmetics How About Them Apples? Cheek and Lip Cream – £26 for palette

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I have a funny feeling that this was used in a box before, not too long ago. I didn’t receive it then, so I’m quite happy to have another chance to experience it, but I can see it being quite annoying if some soul gets it in their box twice. However, the packaging is really cute, and it is a lovely wee sample. As a new convert to cream blush I have fallen instantly in love, and am considering picking up the palette when it’s back in stock.

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The shade ‘pie’ is a lovely bright pink colour, and the formula is so creamy it is really easy to blend. It feels like I’ll get quite a bit of use out of this sample size which really bodes well for the longevity of the palette. TheBalm (again team USA) seem to be popping up everywhere these days, and I really am turning into something of a fan. Their packaging is absolutely adorable retro-chic, and, if all of their products meet expectations as well as these blushes, they are going to become a firm fixture in my beauty regime.

Caudalie Vinoperfect SPF Day Perfecting Fluid – £38.00 for 40ml

Given the price of the product this 10ml sample is uber generous! There is a really fine nozzle on the tube, which is great to restrict the amount of product you squeeze out, as a little really does go a long way. The smell is quite clinical, but it absorbs quickly into the skin, and feels very hydrating. I’ve only been using this for a few days, but have noticed that my skin does appear to be smoother. It also contains SPF 15, and it’s always great to see skincare that really does take care of your skin. I’m not sure whether I could afford to buy this again, but if your purse-strings are freer than mine it is a really great product and it’s available here. Allez les bleus!

O P I Nail Laquer – The Brazil Collection – Liquid Sand – £14.50 for mini-set 

HURRY! YOU CAN GET THIS SET FOR £5.75 AT CHEMIST DIRECT. GO NOW!

Ahem.

Not to pick bones or anything, but team USA are at it again! Ok, ok, it’s a very fitting homage to Brazil, all these gorgeous colours! I was lucky enough to receive Samba-dy Loves Purple, great names!, and I can’t get enough of it.

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I’ve always wanted to try the liquid sand formula, but was a bit scared that I’d hate the texture – who wants sandpaper nails? However, the texture is not a problem at all, as although it is grainy, I really wouldn’t describe it as rough. The particles also catch the light for a little glitter without having a too full-on effect. I’ve yet to see how hard-wearing it is, but it’s such a special shade I’d doubt I’d use it as my everyday.


 

So there we go! Another great month from BirchBox –  plenty of goodies for me to play with! I absolutely can’t wait until next month!

What did you think of BirchBox this month? Did you enjoy it as much as me? Let me know in the comments!! xx

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Love Me Beauty: May Menu 2

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Hello, folks! Just finished my last piece of coursework for the year! Now just have my dissertation to write… Gulp!  This year has been one heck of a rollercoaster, but something that’s always cheered me up is my monthly box from Love Me Beauty. For just £10 +p&p (£2.95) you receive a box of goodies that you’ve pre-chosen from a set of menus which mix beauty, bodycare, and lifestyle options. Don’t like a month’s menus? It’s absolutely no hassle to skip. I love the surprise of blindly opening a beauty box, but the feeling of anticipation I get knowing my box is on the way is just as good!

The box itself isn’t that fancy (hence why I haven’t pictured it above), but I’ve never had a box arrive in anything other than perfect condition, and it does save on packaging.

So, what’s in the box this month?

Tea Pigs: Rooibos Crème Caramel ~ £0.65 (per teabag)

This is a beautiful, indulgent cup of tea that feels like it’s giving you a hug from the inside out. It’s also caffeine free, which is great as I’ve been drinking it before bedtime. Rooibos supposedly has many health benefits, so it’s nice to feel like I’m being a bit decadent and giving my body something too.

Suti:  Trial Pack in Cleanse Balm, Purity Balm and Fabulous Foot Balm

Now, I haven’t put a price down for this as you can buy it from Suti’s site for £6.50, where it actually has more in it! I love the smell of the cleanse balm, which melts gorgeously on the skin. I thought it smelt a bit like a lemon tart, which is my favourite! I can’t say I’ve noticed any particular change in my skin, either for the worse or better, though.The foot balm also feels wonderful, and it’s nice to treat my feet with summer on the horizon (maybe?)

GO Stationery: Pocket Notebook Set in ‘Tulip Garden’ ~ £5 

These notebooks are so cute! I actually received a slight colour varient on the set I received, so as you can see above, it’s more green, black and pink than the blue and pink version shown on the website. Perfect size for a handbag, great for jotting down ideas on the go! I love that my box has included these this month, even if they aren’t strictly speaking beauty. Beauty is an inside and out thing, so letting the creativity flow in some gorgeous little notebooks fits the bill for me.

Raw Skincare: Natural Lip Balm in Ginger ~ £1.98  

I must confess to not having heard of raw skincare before. This is a great little lip balm, however, so I am keen to find out more! I am definitely a lip balm fanatic (I even make my own!), but I’ve never had a ginger one before, which is what drew me so strongly to this menu option. It moisturises my lips well, and although ginger can be quite a strong flavour, the lip balm isn’t too overwhelming, and I actually find it quite uplifting and refreshing.

Nail Girls: Nail Polish in ‘Nude Pink’ ~ £13.50  

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This is a lovely summery colour that I’m sure I’ll get plenty of use out of! I’ve already worn it a few times, and it’s lasted quite well, although I don’t think it’s up to heavy wear (it was no match for the busy bar I work in). I found this easy to apply, and two coats were enough to give an even coverage. It took a little longer to dry than I’d expect, but it dried with a lovely sheen, so overall very pleased to have received this!


 

There we have it! I really enjoyed May’s box. For me it was the perfect mix of body, beauty, and treats! I already can’t wait for next month’s box!

What did you think of your LoveMeBeauty Box this month? What menu did you pick? What was your favourite item? Leave a comment! xx