Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Review: Vichy NormaDerm 3 in 1

Vichy NormaDerm 3 in 1* - (RRP £11.00 - Available from Independent Pharmacies from July 2012 and Boots nationwide from mid August 2012). 

After having such a good experience with the Vichy Dermablend Concealer I received in my June Glossybox, I jumped at the chance to try another of their products. One of the immediate factors that drew me to this product is that it's a 3 in 1 product. As much as I try to look after my skin, I don't like to spend too long on my routine, so having one product that can do 3 things is really appealing to me. 


1. Cleanser - reduces sebum and impurities
2. Scrub - helps unclog pores
3. Mask - matifies skin and clarifies complexion

The product itself is a thick blue/green paste with 25% clay to "eliminate sebum and impurities without drying out the skin." It contains "'peeling effect' ingredients" with a "skin soothing agent." It aims to have 100% efficacy, 100% tolerance and 100% pleasure by being "suitable for sensitive skin, soap-free, paraben-free, alcohol-free and enriched with soothing and fortifying Vichy Thermal Spa Water." Because of the consistency of the product, a little goes a long way so it's going to be a while until I use the product up, which is always good in my books! 


The packaging is a in a sturdy and in a fresh looking tube with a cap lid which is easy to dispense the product out of.

After using this product both as a cleanser/scrub and a mask, I am pleased with the results. I was a little apprehensive of the beads in the scrub as I've had reactions to products with these in before, however my skin seems to be soothed by them instead. I think I'm more likely to use it as a mask rather than a cleanser/scrub as I really like the after-effects as my skin feels firmer and squeaky clean. The product is so simple to use and take off, and takes seconds to activate and cleanse the skin, revealing smooth and silky skin. 


Have you tried Vichy products before? 

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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

What I Wore: Mad about Manly

manly
 
Beach Dress: H&M Bag: Primark Playsuit: H&M Shoes: H&M


After our return from Melbourne, we took a ferry trip to the lovely Manly. I'm sure you can see from these photos that not only was the weather stunning with a capital S, but the views were AMAZING. After some beach time, my sister and I did the famous Manly walk around the coast and cliffs. I don't think we realised the intensity of the walk until we had finished it. To do the entire thing would have taken 4 and a half hours, so we only did half of it as we had to catch our ferry back but it was a lovely walk and something I would definitely recommend anyone who visits Manly do to - after all, it's free! I wore my lightweight floral playsuit and beach dress for easy walking gear. My shoes however, weren't the most appropriate but it was either my flats or my heels and rock climbing in heels is not easy!


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Monday, 27 August 2012

Review: Hair Couture International by Sleek Velve Ponytail

Hair Couture International by Sleek Velve Ponytail* - RRP £22.50 (Available at independent hair and beauty stores and boutiques) 


A few months ago I was contacted by Sleek hair and was offered the chance to review something from their range of products. Other than this ponytail, they stock hair extensions, winges, buns and other hair pieces. I already own hair extensions (which I sadly never use) and my bun's big enough as it is, so I chose a ponytail. Although my hair itself is quite lengthy, it's quite fine which means not a lot of volume, so I had a lot of hope for my ponytail hair piece. 


I treated the ponytail as I would my own hair - wearing it, styling it and washing it. I'm going to review it based on the following factors: Application, Colour Match, Usability, Quality and Value for Money. 

Application - I have to admit that I didn't find the application instructions that easy to follow and turned to Youtube to see how to fit the hair piece. The ponytail comes with an attached grip comb and a Velcro drawstring wrap around. I first started by tying my hair up in a high ponytail and used the grip to slide that on top of my ponytail. Once secure, I then used the Velcro drawstring wrap to tighten the hairpiece around my original ponytail. I'd suggest at this point to have a few grips ready in case your ponytail doesn't feel completely secure. After I'd worn the ponytail a few times, the application process did become easier, so maybe it's just a case of 'practice makes perfect!' 


Colour Match - This is probably the factor I was most impressed with. Sleek have a range of different shades to choose from to ensure that your hair blends in with the product. My hair is dark brown so I usually go for the darkest brown shades, which is what I got with my ponytail. As you can see from the photos, the ponytail blended brilliantly with my own hair colour and when wearing it, no-one knew any different that the hair piece wasn't my own. 


Usability - When the product was in my hair, it was comfortable to wear and didn't weigh my own hair down, even when asleep. It didn't once move from the place of application which I was impressed with as there's nothing more obvious about wearing hair pieces than when they're obviously detaching from your head! When it came to washing them, they were easy to shampoo - easily absorbing the product and taking seconds to rinse. They also didn't tangle which was something I was worried about. 


Quality - You get a lot of hair for your money and the product is sturdy and added a lot of volume to my otherwise fine hair which is what I wanted. The thickness however did struggle to blend in with my fine hair as you can see which is one of the downsides I found to this product. I think that has a lot to do with the fact that my own hair is longer than that of the ponytail, which is not a negative of the product. As I often curl my own hair, I tested the product curled with my own curled ponytail. Unfortunately the hair piece didn't hold or curl as easily as my own hair which did leave it looking a bit obvious when blended. 


Value for Money - Hair pieces these days can be quite costly so I think that £22.50 is great value for money for the amount of hair you get. This hair piece can instantly transform your look and add volume to your hair. If my hair was a little shorter then I think this product would be perfect for me, however because I did struggle to blend the length of the hair piece with my own hair, I think I'm only likely to use it when I first get my hair cut. This hairpiece would be ideal for those with shorter, maybe shoulder length hair as it gives people the option of a long ponytail without costing too much. 


Have you tried any of Sleek's hair products before? What did you think of them? 

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What I Wore: Back to Black

WIWmelbourneblacklace 
Jacket: H&M Bralet: Primark Skirt: H&M Bag: Primark Boots: Australia

Don't get me wrong, I do love colour, but black is always a staple I go back to. One of my newest style crushes and my sort-of inspiration behind this look is 90210's Gillian Zinser. She pulls of effortlessly cool perfectly - please can I be you for a day?! I love wearing my new H&M dip hem/waterfall skirt which was a bargain at under £15 and I think this is one of my more edgier looks to date. My sister, however, was not keen on my look du jour, questioning if I was "actually going out like that??" Personally I don't think my look was that out there, but hey - each to their own! I bought a new hair donut whilst in Oz which is about four times the size of British ones and only $3! From all of the stares I got and observations made, hair donuts are not that popular down under! I was stopped quite a few times, even by an air hostess on the plane, asking how I did my hair, whether it was real etc and at one point got ambushed by tourists taking photos of it. Guys, it's just hair ha! Maybe one day I'll post a tutorial, but since I hate my own voice and being on film full stop, that might never happen!


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Sunday, 26 August 2012

Weekly Round Up

Garlic bread and a catch up, @PINsykes' Company article on whether it's time to kill the hashtags, Broad Walk, Pavilion Gardens (Buxton), And again, Rachel's amazing bag, Virgin Trains petition signed, Adorable gift for my Australian cousin, Interview prep on the way to London, Friday bun, Cat's name on the Mount Pleasant credits, Costa catch up with the girls, Shopping with Rachel and Megan, Loving these Matalan shoes, Cheeky McDonalds, Forever wishing I looked like Kate Beckinsale


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Friday, 24 August 2012

Matalan Christmas 2012

Christmas cards have already hit the shops which means the Christmas countdown has already started - even tins of Celebrations, Roses and Quality Street are half price! So Matalan's 2012 Christmas collection has arrived in a timely fashion! From cute and quirky Christmas decorations to the hottest party looks and winter cosy pyjamas, the festive season is a-coming. 

From light-up polar bears and snowmen to the more demure 'Noel' mantelpiece pieces and reindeer decoration, Matalan have a range of home decorations guaranteed to get you into the festive spirit. 

Spruce up a typically girly sequin dress with a ruched leather look belt or go luxe in this velvet flock shawl. 

Feel like you're walking in a Winter wonderland in this cream and dusty pink ensemble. The shoes may not be 'snow-worthy' but what fun is fashion if it's always practical?

Dip hems remain popular for the Christmas season and this outfit is a great alternative to the ever popular LBD. 

Get it 'white' on the night in these metallic shorts, sequin top or pleather studded jacket.

Sequins, metallics, florals, mesh and chiffon remain big game players this Christmas.

Envelope clutches are the go-to bag for any event, but my favourite is this royal blue horse clutch - a compete bargain at only £8!

Feel like Cinderella in these jewel-toe stilettos. Team with a simple dress to let your shoes to the talking. 

And after one too many parties or frosty walks home in the Winter weather, keep warm in these cosy festive themed pyjamas. 


What do you think of Matalan's 2012 Christmas collection? 
Click here to browse their website and collection. 


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What I Wore: Harbour Town

WIWmelbourneharbourtown  
Blazer: F&F Dress: Topshop Shoes: Australia Bag: Primark

Apologies for the image quality of these photos, the sun seemed to have shone on one more than another, and by this point I think my sister tired of taking my outfit photos! I love my Topshop polka dot dress, some people think it's a skirt and a top, but it's actually dress. I own it in both colours and it's so easy to just throw on! I wore this shopping to the Harbour Town and the famous Victoria Market. I love the atmosphere of markets and this one was huge! I also picked up a few more books to add to my collection - one of which had been imported from Morrison's as it had their sticker, attached with a £4.99 logo on it! One thing I noticed with shopping out there was that when something was advertised as say, $9.99, it was always rounded up, so $10 - which obviously isn't a massive difference, but I don't see why they just don't advertise it as such!

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Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Motel Rocks A/W 2012

Another late post - this time showcasing the marvels Motel Rocks had to offer for their Autumn/Winter 2012 collection. Widely known for their prints and bold styles, A/W 12 does not disappoint. And if you're on the lookout for a party dress, then Motel is the brand for you - remember the best-selling Gabby dress from last year? Well expect more of that. Glitz, glam and galaxy prints and velvet disco pants - Winter, we welcome you. 

Blue seemed to be 'the' colour of the Motel A/W12 collection with this rich hue taking centre stage. 

This tropical print, coming in a dress, skirt and trousers will brighten up any cloudy Winter's day, whilst the popular Gina dress gets a festive upgrade in velvet with gold detailing. 

These disco style pants get a glam makeover in lace - perfect for the party season, whilst this skater galaxy skirt is from another world!

Or maybe monochrome's more up your street. From florals to polkadots, to geometrics and baroque, you can mix and match your patterns this season. Preppy high necks, mesh overlays and sweetheart necklines lead the way with figure flattering cuts. My favourite is the strapless baroque style dress - trèstrès chic!



And if that isn't enough to tempt your fashion tastebuds, Motel's now delving into leather jackets. Is there anything they can't do? 


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Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Next Christmas 2012

Normally, seeing Christmas trees, baubles and Winter knits would seem crazy in the middle of Summer. But with our recent up and down weather, I'm actually welcoming Christmas. Whilst the short days fill me with dread, the reliably cold temperatures mean we know what to wear. Next's 2012 Christmas collection sees classic prints, jewelled designs and chunky coats and jumpers hit our wardrobes. Faux fur collars and capes are Winter warmers whilst sparkly sequinned numbers are perfect for the office party. 


One of the best things about Winter is snuggling inside a thick jumper or cosy coat. Whether you're into classic colours or quirky prints - there's a look for everyone. 

Shirts are a classic staple for any wardrobe, and these embellishments of studs and pearls add a twist to the timeless piece. 

A 'wow' jacket can transform a plain tee or bordering on boring boadroom suit. This fresh floral one brings Spring florals straight through to Autumn/Winter 2012.

Rock a printed tailor trouser or glam it up in leather look leggings. 

With everyone rushing to pop on collar, why not purchase a piece with one already on? 

Sheers, lace and mesh were big gameplayers this Christmas and it's the quickest way to add some luxury into your wardrobe. 

Jewels, glitter and sequins are expected come party season and these don't disappoint. Black, gold, white, charcoal and this season's hot colour plum are your go-to shades. 

  Feathers, tassels and glitz and glam are the order for Christmas shoes. Studs, rivets and mesh toughen up the usually pretty pairs. 

 Whether you fan neutrals over prints, the causal accessories are just as bold and bright for Christmas. 


My favourites from the collection were the white and back studded collar shirts - guaranteed to be best sellers!

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© STACEY JOANNE MARIE

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