Wednesday, 27 July 2011

New Earrings

It was a friend's birthday this week so we all went for lunch and a bit of shopping.  I didn't want to spend much money but I did find these two sets of earrings which I really liked.  I found both pairs in Animal which is a shop that I never usually go into and did not actually realise that they did such pretty jewellery.

I also bought a bun ring a few days earlier.  I know these have been around for years but I have never tried one before but as I am trying to be a bit more adventurous with my hair styles I decided to give it a go and these were the results, which I was very happy with!
I like this product because it helps to create a nice neat bun and also makes it look like you have lots of thick hair!  The effect is quite different to the type of bun that the spin pins achieve so I am happy to have added another style to my repertoire!  I am happy to be able to say goodbye to the days of only having two hair options, either hair down or in a ponytail and wish I had had the patience to try more styles out a long time ago!

Friday, 22 July 2011

Dry Shampoo Review

I am growing the layers out of my hair and also I want the whole length to get a few inches longer, so, as the hairdresser always suggests, I try to wash it every couple of days rather than every day.  Sometimes I find that my fringe can look a bit greasy as I have a bad habit of pushing it out of my eyes all day, so I have tried out some brands of dry shampoo to help me keep my hair looking fresh for longer.  It is also brilliant for when you have just washed your hair and want to put it in an updo but its too silky.
The first product is by the brand Batiste and is the cheapest, I also believe this one is probably the easiest to find in the shops.  The pros to this brand are the cost, around £2 for the can, and the range of dry shampoos that they offer.  There are a series of different smells and also one with a hint of blonde and one with a hint of brunette (pictured).  It does also make your hair feel fresh.  The major con is that this product comes out very white and you can't actually brush out the powdery look.  I have tried the plain version and the hint of brunette version and the brunette one actually looks gray!
The next product is by Label M and this is my favourite of the 3 dry shampoos.  I got this one from my hairdresser's salon and it works brilliantly, giving a matt effect.  The product does still come out a bit white if you hold the can too close but when you brush your hair that soon comes out.  My friend has this dry shampoo by the same brand that she bought via Ebay, but she found one with a pink stripe on the packaging, and when she sprayed my hair from about a 1cm away there was no white residue at all!  I shall be keeping my eye out for that one next!
The 3rd product is by Mark Hill, Style Secrets and this is also a very good dry shampoo, it does come out a little bit white and won't brush out completly but if you have lighter coloured hair then it is an ideal product to try!  You can also purchase this product in Boots which is very handy (I would also recommend the other products in this range, I have tried most of them out myself!)

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Hot Spiced Chick Peas

I'm not a very good cook but as my son is nearly 5 months old now I have been working hard to get back into my pre pregnancy clothes recently so I have been trying out some low fat recipes.  My husband loves anything spicy we choose to try this Hot Spiced Chick Peas dish this week.  This is a really easy recipe and also quick to make which is very handy with a little baby around!

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 small onion
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon garum masala
4 large firm tomatoes, chopped tomatoes
425g can chick peas, drained
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander
salt and freshly ground black pepper
coriander leaves to garnish

1)  Heat the oil in a small saucepan, add the onion and cook for 5/10 minutes, stirring constantly until golden brown
2) Add the spices and cook for a further minute.  Add the tomatoes, chick peas, lemon juice and coriander.  Season well to taste.  Cook for 1/2 minutes
3) Spoon into a warmed bowl, garnish with coriander.

These quantities serve 2 people and provide 205 calories per serving. 
The recipe suggests serving with rice but we actually had this with a chicken breast which worked really well!  I should also mention that we did change a few ingredients a tiny bit to fit in with what we had in the cupboard, so we swapped the fresh tomatoes for a can of chopped ones and we left out the coriander but it still turned out really yummy!

Unfortunatley I was so keen to try this that I forgot to take a photo before we tucked in!
I would recommend this recipe as a great low calorie but tasty meal!

Friday, 8 July 2011

Recent Buys

Hello!  I just wanted to show a few things I have bought whilst out and about recently!
Firstly here are my new earrings, I got these in Topshop and paid £6 if I remember correctly, they are made from a gold wire wrapped round in a heart shape design.  I like these drop earrings as I will be able to wear these with lots of different outfits,casual or more dressed up. 

I also got these 2 new nail polish colours, the one on the left is named Impulse and is a clear polish with a lot of pearly glitter through it, it looks very pretty shining under the light.  The polish on the right is named Smooch a baby pink with a gold shimmer through it, I decided to wear this polish today and love the result, however I did realise that I have a YSL polish already that comes out practically the same! Opps! This colour would look really good with a tan too and will go with most outfits.
Finally I came across these nail glitter pots by GOSH.  I was intrigued as I often wear Rockstar nails on my toes, which is where glitter is encapsulated into UV gel, which leaves a far more sparkly and long lasting result than a glitter polish.  The instructions on the box say to simply apply one coat of clear nail varnish and dip your nail into the pot.  I found this product to have good and bad points.  Firstly the colours are really vibrant and there is a good range to choose from.  I also like the fact that the glitter is very fine which looks better than a chunky glitter.  The points I didn't enjoy about this product is that the pot was too small to dip your finger in to coat the whole nail (I have short nail beds so this would be even more of an issue for most people) and I found that I had to pour the glitter over the nail, which is messy and I had to collect the glitter onto a piece of paper so that I didn't waste it all.  I also decided to put a top coat onto my nails to set the glitter and waited a good 10 minutes before using a brush to wipe off the excess glitter, however as you can see in the picture some of the glitter chipped away in chunks (thumb and pinky).  Finally despite leaving a small gap all around the edge of my nail I found that the glitter stuck to the edges of my fingers so it looked a bit messy, this would fall away naturally over time but I didn't want to scrub too hard after the chunks had started to come away.  This is also a time consuming way to decorate your nails so I would imagine that it would be frustrating for it to start chipping after a couple of days.  Overall a fun product but I think I shall save the glitter for my next set of gel Rockstar nails rather than follow the product instructions.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

GOSH nail polish and matte effect top coat

I have been shopping again for more nail polish!  I love all nail art and try to experiment all the time to constantly have something different on my nails.  I did buy a red matte polish from Claire's a few months ago and really liked it as an alternative look to super shiny nails but I have not come across many matte polishes since so I was excited to find this matte top coat as I can now turn any colour matte, or even try painting in a a few patterns using the topcoat.  Below is a picture of the result on my ring finger compared to my other nails polished with a normal topcoat.
I also bought shades 554 Gold and 596 Miss Mole (pictured on nails) from the range and really like both colours.  The gold is a very pretty, light, yellow toned gold with a lot of shimmer and Miss Mole is a perfect neutral shade to wear with any outfit.  You do need at least 2 coats but that is standard and I have also found that these polishes last a good time before starting to chip, about 3/4 days, having tried out a lot of brands I think that is an excellent result!  I got these polishes from Superdrug and there is a really great range of colours.
 Here is a swatch of the Claire's matte polish, the gold underneath is their 'suede' look polish but in my opinion it comes out pretty similar to the matte effect, with an added bit of shimmer.  These polishes take 3 coats for a really even depth of colour but the overall result is nice.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Essence Nail Art Special Effect Topper Review

This is another Essence nail polish that I was sent as a gift from my friend in Italy and I wanted to do a review on it as I think it may be my favourite glitter polish ever!
The shade is called 02 Circus Confetti, which I love, and is really apt for the effect that the polish leaves!  It is a clear base with multi coloured pieces of glitter floating inside, and I have counted 4 different sizes of glitter in there.
I love this polish because you can wear it in many different ways, layering it up to create as sparse or dense an effect as you like, the picture was 2 coats.  The photo really does not do this polish justice as the colours are so bright and the glitter is very shiny!
This polish also looks really effective over another colour and since there are so many colours in there really does match with most outfits! 
I shall be keeping my eye out for Essence's white prism effect nail topper next!  As mentioned before there are not many places to buy Essence polish in the UK but I have seen some on Amazon so I shall have a look there!