Monday, 18 March 2013

The Body Shop

So even though I was on a Spending Ban this week Ollie and I went shopping the other day and walked past The Body Shop- they had a sale on! Ollie is a mind reader and said I could choose a few things because I've been having a stressful time lately (whatta babe!) so I choose a couple of bits.. It could've been much much worse, who can resist a sale?!

So here's what I bought :)

I'm going to talk about the body wash first, I took a few pictures and they just didn't look right... But anyway I got the Vineyard Peach body wash for, wait for it!... £2.. I could have bought 10 or more of these. The smell is obviously peach, but so refreshing. I love this, I've never bought a body wash from The Body Shop before but I'm so glad I picked this up. I will most definitely be buying more of these.

I then had a look at the body butters which were reduced from £13 to just £5! So I figured it was only right to get two :P I picked up Passion fruit and Raspberry and oh my word, the smells are just amazing! If you like strong fruity smells then these are for you! (They do of course have non-fruity smells). I am using the Raspberry one currently and it's leaving my skin so soft, I can't fault it at all! I will buy these again and again and I have loved them from being about 14.

I guess it's always good to go back to a brand you've forgotten about!

What are your favourite skin care treats?
Are you a fruity girl? (wheeeh!)

Nicola Mai..x

Spending Ban: Update One

I have been a tiny bit stressed this week... But I have not spent a penny I shouldn't have *yay*, Ollie however did treat me to some things (which I didn't ask for).
He bought me:

  • A dress- £10 from Primark
  • 2 body butters- £10 from Body Shop!
  • A shower gel- £2 from Body Shop.
So a grand total of £22, in gifts that I didn't ask for. Normally when I'm stressed I spend spend spend.. So I'm quite proud that I haven't spent any money this week! :D

I have made a wish list of all the things I have wanted to buy but resisted because they weren't necessary..
Here they are:
  • A family size bar of Galaxy (I find it hilarious this is the first thing on my list)
  • Facemask- Cupcake from Lush to be exact
  • Bathbombs- Enchanter from Lush (always on my wish list)
  • Hair dye (I'm very thankful I resisted this as I had an urge to go back dark!)
  • More Magazine
  • Eye Make-Up remover
  • Moisturiser

So One week down and I'm feelng good! Spent so far- £0 :D!

Nicola Mai..x

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Lush Haul :)

There should be no surprises from me when I say that I went to Lush, but I went to Lush! While I was in my local branch (Peterborough) there I got talking to the lovely Lisa about bath stuff (obviously), work, life, flowers and our kitty cats! After a lengthy chat and a store to myself (Monday afternoons are brilliant if you hate busy shopping centres) I was surprised that I didn't come out with more.. But here we go.

Mum's Tulip*- £5.25
Well well well, this little beaut not only smells divine, with a mix of chocolate and orange, but leaves me with a bath full of bubbles! I love the whole bubble wand concept that Lush have as I would say it's the lazy girls version of a bubble bar as all you have to do is run it under running water, you can swish it around in the water too if you like. The wands give you just as many bubbles as the bubble bars and smell just as amazing. this also left the water with a slight tinge of orange (but nothing as bright as what you'll see later!) Mum's tulip left my skin feeling soft and nourished and I am very disappointed that they're only a short term thing as I would 100% buy this over and over again!
I also thought it was a really cute touch that the label actually has seeds running throughout, so I can plant it! Stuff like this makes me a little bit excited!!

The Brightside- £4.25
This is heading way up my list of my favourite bubblebars, not only do I adore the bright swirl of orange, red and yellow, whenever I pick this up to use I instantly feel so much better about everything. The Brightside turns the bath water a vivid orange colour and fills the bath full of foamy fragrant bubbles. The fragrance itself is of course citrus, but especially orange (what else would you expect from this colour?) I really love this bubble bar and I hope Lush never gets rid of it, I may cry if that happens as I can't get enough! As this is a bubble bar you can of course re-use it, which makes it amazing value for money :)

Magic Mushroom- £3.50

One of my oldest loved friends, Magic Mushroom! I was lucky enough to spot this on the Retro section of Lush's website and immediately put a few in my basket. I remember when I first ever used this and got just as giddy this time round. The top of this bubble bar as you can see is bright red, but has a soft vanilla fragrance.. I'm not normally a vanilla scent lover but this is just the right touch, the stem is scented like strawberries so mixed together you have the perfect summery/spring mix. Like every other bath bombs this leaves my bath full of massive bubbles and leaves my skin feeling soft and lovely.

The Enchanter- £3.20
I fear I may go onto a slight bit of a rant so bare with me because I absolutely LOVE this bathbomb, what I don't love is the fact it is being discontinued :( the reason; people don't know how to rinse their baths out! :@ A few people have complained to Lush that this bathbomb leaves a pink ring around their bath after they get out, now I don't know about you but I clean the bath out after I use it.. So this would never have happened. *sigh*

Anyway, back to the review! Like The Brightside bubble bar this makes me happy straight away, as you can see from the picture above the bomb is yellow and orange and fizzes away like crazy. There is then a little surprise in the middle, bright pink! I got so excited when I first used this and even now I get a little buzzed whenever I use it; I'm slightly odd. The fragrance that fills the bathroom around you is a fun and fresh lime and neroli which are used as boosters in order to make you feel happier and they certainly work.

I'm sorry but look how amazing this colour is!

I will also note that while in a conversation with the lovely Lisa I mentioned earlier we were discussing how The Enchaner is like the Twilights zany cousin while Twilight is dark and mysterious- interesting!

What do you think?
What are your favourite Lush products?

Nicola Mai..x

Today's big topic..

So everyone is talking about the closure of Google Reader, I for one am gutted... I don't tend to use anything else for following other blogs or allowing other blogs to follow me.
I do have a link to my BlogLovin in my side bar. Which is what I will be switching too!
Let me know what you're switching too so I can follow your blog elsewhere...

I also love to use Twitter to get information, use bbloggers chat and talk to anyone lovely.. you can follow me at nicolamai_ 

Nicola Mai..x

Monday, 11 March 2013

Spending Ban!

The other day I went shopping, fell into Boots as I always do and came out with 3 body scrubs. 3! I already had 2 at home. I've decided enough is enough, so I am imposing a spending ban before my family calls an intervention.

My name is Nicola and I have an addiction to buying bath/beauty and make-up products.

Here are my rules:
  • I can only buy the basics if I run out- shampoo, deodorant, conditioner & baby wipes.
  • NO bath products.
  • NO make-up products
  • NO nail varnish
  • NO skincare
  • NO clothes
  • I'm allowed bus fair to uni/£10 food shopping for sandwich things.
  • I am not allowed to buy junk food apart from one easter egg for Ollie.
  • I am not allowed take-aways.
  • I am not allowed meals out.
  • I am not allowed to ask anyone to buy me the things I'm not allowed.
  • I can accept gifts off people, but I'm not allowed to ask for gifts ;)
  • I am allowed one night out (which is March the 23rd in Nottingham for Chloe's birthday).
I think I have covered everything and got rid of any loop holes...
I am going to add up everything that I save and see what the difference is. I think whatever I save I will put into mine and Ollie's savings so we can do something nice with it.

My ban starts today March 11th to April 11th..  I will keep you updated on my spends and see how I do!
Fingers crossed!

Nicola Mai..x

Ollie turns 21!

So as some of you may know from previous posts my lovely boyfriend turned 21 yesterday (March 10th) and as part of his celebrations I took him to London for the day :) Here are some of the pictures we took on the day, I thought using collages would make the post less picture heavy for you to read.. :)

Obviously the first thing I want to mention is the food we ate, I didn't get to my size without enjoying food ;)

We enjoyed some dim sum and cocktails at Ping Pong on London's South Bank, he food was both amazingly presented and tasting! I would highly recommend anyone visiting Ping Pong if you enjoy Japanese style food. The cocktails were also rather lovely, we only had the whole day ahead of us, but I enjoyed a rose and lychee martini (very strong) and Ollie chose their twist on a Pina Colada.

Later in the day we went to one of our favourite places ever, Wagamama, now we don't have one in Peterborough so if we travel anywhere and they have one we tend to eat their. As you can see from the bottom line of pictures the food is beautifully presented and we enjoy trying to use the chopsticks ;) Once again I was incredibly happy with both the service and the food. Good times!

Next up; some touristy bits. Ollie went to his first library ;), we went on the London Eye (Ollie had never been on!) and took some typical London Eye shots. Obviously took some pictures of Big Ben and even went to visit the Queen's pad- I also had a look in the gift shop next to the palace and saw the most amazing tiara ever!  After a walk around London we spotted Westminster Abbey and it looked so pretty lit up at night that I couldn't resist snapping a picture.

Okay so this was the most exciting part for both of us, you wouldn't believe we are 21 and 22, we went to the Aquarium! Ollie had never been and I had only visited once so I booked us some tickets. I am obsessed with turtles so got very very excited when I got to them... I have chosen one of many pictures I took of them. I was also amazed that they now have penguins! Even though the sound penguins make terrifies me- don't ask- they are hilarious animals to watch and even started having a little fight with one another.
I should also note that I really want a jellyfish, how gorgeous are they?!

Some normal pose/vain shots of us on our travels- from these pictures I have realised I need a haircut badly!

This was the cake I picked up from Patisserie Valerie, it's absolutely divine.. I can't even tell you.. On the plus side it's not sickly! I thought it would be when I first chose it but it's just.. mmm!

Then a quick shot of Ollie and the present I bought him, this picture doesn't do the guitar justice but he loved it and I had to take the opportunity to snap a pic while I could.

Nicola Mai..x

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Burts Bees

So I picked this cute little set from John Lewis for £12.99, I've heard Burt's Bees is an amazing brand but I didn't want to shell out on anything full-size until I knew for sure. This set comes with five miniatures/handbag size pieces, which personally I think is great value for money. I've given them all a good go and this is what I thought:

Coconut Foot Cream
 I can't say I'm ever on the look out for a foot cream, I hate my feet with a passion and avoid them at all costs! However I do love the smell of coconut so I decided to grin and bare it and give myself a bit of a pamper. I should also note that the smell of coconut isn't overpowering, or one of those sickly sweet coconut cast offs, also the added peppermint smell makes this product smell delightful. After bathing I dried my feet then massaged a 2p sized amount onto my foot (Ollie offered to massage them for me, but I like his face too much to let him!), it dried almost instantly and didn't leave my feet feeling greasy or anything. I then painted my toenails a lovely bright colour, I like doing this as people don't tend to see my feet and they can be as wacky as I like.
Overall I quite enjoyed this product and I will definitely use all of this up, as I mentioned before I don't tend to buy foot creams or treatments but I will think differently now I've used this. I would also like a bath scrub/wash with this scent because it truly is divine!

Beeswax Lip Balm- Peppermint
I warn you I am about to get very excited about a small tube of lip balm.. But, OMG! Out of everything in the pack I was most excited to use this as everyone who has tried Burt's Bees has raved about their lip balms, they're not wrong! Not only does the smell remind me of Kendall mintcake it also leaves a slight taste of it on my lips (yummy!). The peppermint smell and taste is by no means overbearing, sometimes companies can get it completely wrong when it comes to mint, Burt's Bees have got it spot on! As the weather is constantly changing it's mind I always have a couple of lip balms on the go (I have a make-up/beauty hoarding problem), this will now be a firm favourite and has gone straight into my handbag. 
It leaves my lips incredibly moisturised and when I first put it on my lips I got a slight tingling sensation, which wasn't painful just a slight numbing effect. I really do love this product and I wouldn't hesitate to buy it again.

Hand Salve
The only thing I was mildly disappointed with in this set was this hand salve, mainly due to the smell.. It smells like lavender and for someone who doesn't like lavender anyway it was a bit too much and I had to wash my hands after a couple of minutes. 
In terms of product it's a good substitute for a hand cream, it's solid form makes it less messy and more cost efficient as there is less chance of wastage. In terms of helping my chapped hands? Yeah it was good, no better than a hand cream but still aided my horrible chapped hands. I wouldn't re-buy this as I hated the smell and would only consider it for the convenience of having a small tin that does the same job as a hand cream.
Good news is I have a friend who loves lavender so I'm sure she won't mind taking it off my hands.. har har.

 Body Lotion- Milk and Honey
This is again not a scent I would normally go for, but it is lush. The perfect mix of both scents which is perfectly blended to make a soft sweet smell. As far as body lotions go, I'm quite lazy I must admit I don't normally bother too much unless I'm having a serious pamper day. But this is lovely, a nice consistency which is neither too solid nor runny and leaves the skin feeling moisturised and smooth without being greasy. I do think I would buy this again as I think overall it's a great product and I was very happy with how my skin felt afterwards.  

 Deep Cleansing Cream- Soap Bark and Chamomile
 I'm not 100% on what soap bark is meant to smell like but overall this product has a light fresh scent which has a touch of lemons, again Burt's Bees have got the ratio just right and my nose buds are pleasantly surprised. This cream is thick and you don't need a lot to work on your whole face, which I like as I don't enjoy putting too much stuff onto my face (bar make-up). The product itself works really well and my face was left incredibly smooth while looking and smelling fresh. I would buy this again as well as it's just lovely. Simply lovely.

So overall I was very happy with this pack, I would buy 4 out of 5 again and I'm also intrigued enough to delve further into the brand and try more things out. This pack was defiantly worth the money as you don't need to use large amounts of the products to gain a the desired result. I think the packaging is super cute, whilst remaining rustic as the same time. The scents of these products are amazing and I think Burt's Bees certainly have the right nose for the job! Very happy shopper!

 I won't go into all the ethics and such like on the brand as this is already pretty lengthy, but you can read for yourself and have a good shop here:

Have you tried any Burt's Bees products?
What did you think?
Anything you can recommend me?

Nicola Mai..x

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Shopping with my mum and sister :)

As Ollie's 21st lands on Mother's Day my mum thought it would be a good idea to do Mother's Day type stuff earlier in the week.. So today that's what we did. My mum, Kathleen (sister) and I went to town to do some shopping and had a lovely dinner at Prezzo.. Don't even get me started on their carbonara! Anyway these are some of the things I got today, some nail varnish, some bracelets, 3 body scrubs (whoops) and some face masks for us girls to do later :)

I'll do a review of everything next week I should think :) 
Well this was just a quick one I'm off to eat copious amounts of chocolate and pamper myself!

Nicola Mai..x

Monday, 4 March 2013

Maybeline Rocket

 Well well well, the mascara everyone has been talking about and reviewing. Now here is my two cents and it aint gonna be pretty!
First thing I would like to mention is that I LOVE Maybeline mascaras, the two I use on a regular basis are Maybeline (Collosal Volum' & The Falsies) and I find it hard to fault them. Second thing, this mascara is not one of them. For me anyway.

I absolutely fell in love with the packaging, it's bright and fun and obviously drew to my eye in Boots. However I was very disappointed when I found out this mascara had a plastic applicator, as I don't tend to like these and felt I wouldn't get on with it (I was half right)

As you can see from the pictures above this mascara does give my eyelashes some length and I love the deep dark black, however this is no more than my Collosal Volum' does for my eyelashes and I was expecting something different.
Different is what I got, clumps, sticking towards my eye, the applicator also scratched my eyelid and when it came to taking this off ripped my eyelashes out with it (Ouch!), which made it very painful to put mascara on the next day.

Now I don't like to do negative posts but the only thing I liked about this was the packaging and the colour of my eyelashes. I was simply disappointed which is a real shame for me because I rate Maybeline mascaras more than most. I will not be repurchasing!

What have your experiences been with this mascara?
Do you have any mascaras you'd like to recommend me?

Nicola Mai..x

Photo Diary

1) Candles while I write my essays, 2) The lovely flowers Ollie got me for our anniversary, 3) Pepsi sleeping like a weirdo.
4) Plum lips and pose! 5) Cocktails! 6) First full length shot I've been happy with in years! :D
7) Chloebo and I :) 8) Dressing up in my sisters panda onesie 9) Where I have lived for the past month!


 Hey there.. Today's post is going to be my haircare..
Now I swap and change my shampoo regularly as my hair tends to get very used to a shampoo very quickly (which can be annoying as hell! But nevermind) so I thought listing all the shampoo I have used lately would be boring.
So I bring you my styling staples, which aren't many as I am very low maintenance with my hair.

 Aussie Miracle Hair Insurance - £4.49 for 250ml
I am very nearly running out of this.. After about a year, I don't tend to use this in very often as it's a leave in conditioner and I don't like to overly condition my hair. But as it smells so lovely, sometimes I like to give my hair a quick spritz to keep it smelling and looking fresh (especially on days where I have dry shampooed) Although you are meant to spray this onto damp hair naughty me. When I do decide to use the product properly I am left with easy to hairdry/style hair as it gets rid of all my tangles. I would definitely buy this again for the fruity and fresh fragrance alone, but that's just me, but this is one to go back too.

TRESemme 24 Hour Body, Blow Dry Lotion- £4.49 for 250ml
I again don't use this very often as I don't like to have too much product in my hair and when I do I only use a little amount. Hence why this product has been re-branded since I last bought it and I still have about a third left. This is great for giving your roots a little extra pizazz however it claims to add dramatic volume, which in my case it certainly doesn't just enough volume added to keep me happy. I would buy this again, but I would like to see what else is on the market before I do.

TRESemme Salon Finish Firm Hold Hairspray- no idea on the price as it was a gift.
This is actually my boyfriends, he got bought it for Christmas but prefers to use the 5 hold stuff.. Whereas this 3 hold is perfect for me, so it's made it's way from his hair stuff to mine ;) I love to go for the messy just got out of bed hair look and this is perfect for keeping that look in place! I would go back to this again and again and I have never been able to fault TRESemme for their hairsprays. Plus this cute bottle is small enough to pop into my handbag should my style ever drop and need a re-spray (which would be very rare).

So there we are! I am delving more into hair care and there are some things I would like to try so if you have any suggestions for the following please let me know in the comments (my hair is long, thick and coloured a reddy brown):
  • Shampoo and Conditioner
  • Hair Masks
  • Heat Protection
  • Anything to add volume
  • Brushes
 Thanks lovelies xo

Nicola Mai..x

Friday, 1 March 2013

If I Were...

 Another get to know me type post, I really like these, they take me back to the MySpace quiz days... :P

If I were a gemstone, I'd be a Topaz (Rainbow Topaz to be exact).
If I were a scent, I'd be rose.
If I were a pair of shoes, I'd be a pair of converse.
If I were the weather, I'd be fog.
If I were a facial expression, eyerolling.

If I were a car, I'd be a VW Beetle in Green.
If I were a time of day, I'd be 5am.
If I were a month, I'd be October.
If I were a place, I'd be a lake.
If I were a liquid, a bath with a Twilight bathbomb in it.
If I were a taste, I'd be raspberries.

If I were a sea animal, I'd be a sea turtle.
If I were a food, I'd be cheesy mash.
If I were a colour, I'd be green.
If I were a musical instrument, I'd be a grand piano.
If I were a flower, I'd be a lily.
If I were a song, I'd be 'Pheonix From The Flames'- Robbie Williams.

If I were a planet, I'd be Saturn.
If I were an object, I'd be a vase.
If I were a fruit, I'd be a raspberry.
If I were a sound, I'd be a rock concert.
If I were a day of the week, I'd be a Thursday.

What' s in my make-up bag/Everyday make-up.

Hello, I'm going to do a quick post on my everyday make-up and since most of it is in my make-up bag a what's in my make-up bag? post too :)

First of all I would just like to say how cute is my Cath Kitson make-up bag, I got it recently when I went to Meadowhall and absolutely love it! I should also point out that I don't fit the MUA pallet into my make-up bag, but everything else goes in nicely :)

Face- Rimmel Perfect Match foundation in 010, Collection 2000 concealer in Light, Rimmel Hide the Blemish concealer in Light & MAC Blush in Dolly Mix.

Eyes- MUA pallet in Heaven and Earth, MUA eyebrow pencil, Collection 2000 Kohl liner in black, Collection 2000 fast stroke liquid liner in black, Maybeline Colossal Volum' in Black.

This is me on a normal and everyday look- a quick look that takes up to 10 minutes for days when I can't be bothered! Some days I don't put eyeshadow on either.

Nicola Mai..x

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