20 Nov 2014

5 Faves with Ru from Short, Small & Sweet

TODAY my dear sweet marshmallow readers I have a post that had been A LONG TIME in the making! Ru (of Short, Small & Sweet) advertised on my blog a few months ago and with an advertising package comes a guest post! She was awfully busy that month, then I was awfully busy, then she was some more... you catch my drift, it took awhile to get this post. But today is the day, lucky for me, still at busy home with the world's slowest internet, surrounded by boxes of beanie babies, Ru is taking over. I interviewed Ru '5 Faves' style to introduce you, she's amazing. Really. My mother loves her too and follows her blog, a definite seal of approval if ever there was one! ;) Have a nosy here & then make sure you pop on over to her blog for posts such as 'Brownie muffins with Almond Flour' and beauty products galore.

5 favourite things about blogging
I've always liked journaling and making lists, and I've kept diaries on and off since I was a kid. Blogging is another way of expressing myself and my creativity, and I enjoy sharing about my passion - which in this case, green beauty. Apart from that, the green beauty community is a wonderful place to make blogger friends and I'm happy to say that I've come to know a few of them better, and we interact a lot via social media.  they make the community so wonderful by sharing their knowledge, and always showing support for one another.

5 beauty essentials
Every morning, I have either a glass of warm lemon water or wheatgrass powder and collagen powder mixed with orange juice after I wake up. It helps with the digestive system, which in turn benefits the complexion. Exercise is not only good for our bodies, but it supports healthy skin as well, so I make it a point to practice yoga everyday to get myself moving.
Lip balm is an indispensable item as dry lips have always been the bane of my life. I keep them in my bag, on the dresser, and I make sure to place one permanently in every room of the house. Another thing that I always put on is concealer because having hormonal spots is no fun, 'nuff said. Finally, eyebrow powder. Even if I'm just running a quick errand, I won't leave the house without doing my brows - they complete your face.

5 things you can't live without
My husband. Errr he's not a thing but, yeah... He's my best friend and makes me laugh every single day, which is crucial to my mental well-being. Next is my MacBook, of course; what blogging would I do without it? And then my blog planner and black pens come to play. I began using a blog planner a few months ago, and it was one of the best decisions. It helps me stay focused and keep track of my ideas and reviews I have to complete.
I'm a huge tea fan and have at least 2 cups a day. (I like black coffee with coconut oil too, but I limit my coffee intake to 1-2 times per week.) Some of my favourite teas are: dandelion root, ginger, chai, and green tea.
As a female it's inevitable to have a sweet tooth. My weaknesses are dark chocolate or coconut macaroons - I can't decide on one. I try hard to reduce sugar consumption, so I save the dark chocs for TOTM, and make my own macaroons instead of buying them from bakeries/stores.

5 things you do everyday
Recently I started a 30-day challenge of doing yoga daily at 730am. It has been going well so far and I do hope that it will become a deep-rooted habit. Tea-drinking while checking emails/social media is also an everyday thang.
Every day after dinner or before I go to bed, I make it a point to send Whatsapp messages to my mum and sister in Singapore. Technology is awesome. Lastly, my husband and I spend some downtime together every night - just talking about our day, share our thoughts, etc.

5 best green beauty discoveries.
Disclaimer: I'm not playing favorites here, but these are the items that I've been loving, that makes me wonder what I would do without them.
LURK perfume - I used to wear perfume/fragrance sprays a lot until 'turning green'. I didn't really know of any natural perfumes brands until I came across LURK Beauty. I love the minimalist-glam packaging, but at the same time was reluctant to fork out monies for that small bottle. It wasn't until when i got to test them in person at Follain, and I was convinced that RWS005 is my jam. Good things come to people who wait - I grabbed one of the Goodebox X A Night for Green Beauty box #4 which included RWS005, and now it's my HG scent!
Brija Cosmetics Stolen Luxury highlight - This was my first highlighter and still the one I'm using today. Brija Cosmetics is an indie cosmetics brand by Brianna aka iluvjesse444 on Youtube (she makes awesome videos by the way). The stick form is really convenient, and it lends a subtle highlight even if you over-apply by accident. The best part? It's only USD$15. Fifteen!
rms beauty un cover up - I'm sorry if you're allergic/reactive to coconut oil, but this product is simply awesome. It didn't work for me right from the start, but once I passed the blending learning curve, this is my go-to concealer. You can use it as a foundation if you like, and the small pot lasts a long time.
Sugar scrubs - I'm an advocate for oily sugar scrubs. My dry legs need a lot of help and these scrubs keep them smooth and silky. Stop using conventional scrubs that uses walnut shells or plastic beads to exfoliate - they either scratch your skin or contribute to sea water pollution.

Konjac sponges - Can we give a big hooray to this squishy tool? Other than being fun to use (stop squeezing it too much!), konjac sponges gently buff your complexion whilst offering skincare properties. I like the ones made with charcoal or aloe vera - the former is great for combo-oily or blemished skin, and the latter comes in handy in winter to prevent flaking. They're perfect for the body as well, if sugar scrubs are not your thing.

C-c-c-check out Ru everywhere humany possible: Blog / Twitter / Instagram / Facebook

18 Nov 2014

Vegan Beauty.

As I'm still visiting home to help my parents move house (the most mammoth task I have ever encountered) the lovely Katie offered to write a guest post for you all so you don't forget this blog exists! isn't she a gem!

I am so excited to be guest-posting for Annabel today. I would consider Annabel to be one of my good blogging friends (she’s awesome, right?), and without paraphrasing Amber’s recent post, I really am rather honoured that she is allowing me to speak to all her lovely readers. For those who don’t know, I blog about natural products that are also vegan. Therefore, I thought that it might be a good idea for me to share some of my current favourite vegan & natural beauty products! 

Let’s start with skincare. One of my most recent purchases (and recent loves) has been the Dr Alkaitis Organic Soothing Gel. Think of it as good old aloe vera gel after a little upgrade. The addition of organic plant extracts and essential oils, lend this product to being extremely soothing (obviously) and a lifesaver in a time of painful pores and sensitive winter skin. In the summer, this could even be used as a lone daytime moisturiser for finicky oily skins.

Two other vegan skincare products that I’ve been loving - for those of us burdened with sensitive problem skin - include the newly discovered Raw Gaia Hemp Heaven Moisturiser* and the Yours Truly Organics Fix Me Serum. The first of the pair is something that I have continuously raved about on my own blog. This is a cocoa & hemp based balm that is an amazing nigh-time hydrator, without the dreaded pore overload. I cannot help but stroke my skin after application. So. Soft. The serum on the other hand is a total staple for me. This is my second bottle and there is no sign of turning back. With its bizarre, water-like and almost soapy consistency, this serum is light and easily absorbed. Ingredients include oat kernel, saw palmetto and sesame seed extract to soothe and reduce inflammation from acne. I love it.

Finally - on the makeup front - there are two staple vegan products that are always pride of place in my collection. The first of which is a product loved by both myself and Annabel, the RMS Beauty Un-Powder. This beautifully packaged jar houses 100% super finely-milled Silica powder which works excellently as a non-clogging setting powder for combo skins. The second being the Beauty Without Cruelty Super Cream ConcealerBeauty Without Cruelty is one of those veteran vegan makeup brands but this product is relatively new, and extremely awesome. In a pencil form, the formula is smooth, offers brilliant coverage and comes in a shade light enough for my zombie-esque skin tone. Yay! It’s a mega steal at only £6.99 and has quickly become my holy grail concealer, lending its skills to both under-eye and spot concealing. 

Make sure to follow Katie all over the internet and stalk her 24/7: Blog / Twitter / Instagram 

13 Nov 2014

Indie Beauty Brands

Today I am super lucky to have the lovely Amber from Amber's Beauty Talk gracing the pages of my blog! I've followed Amber's blog for aaaages now and was even able to meet her during the summer & can confirm she's just as lovely in real life ;)

When Annabel put out to the Twittersphere that she was looking for bloggers to guest post for her, I jumped at the chance. Annabel’s blog is one of my favourites so it’s an honour to be writing this post on her blog!

I thought I’d share some of my favourite indie brands that I’ve discovered since going green. Our Tiny Bees are a brand that are focused on, of course, bees and honey. They are beekeepers and use British honey in their products. My favourite is their Purifying Detox Mask which is full of rhassoul clay, dried honey, oats and mango that draw impurities out leaving clearer, brighter skin. Their Bath Melt is also pretty darn relaxing. It looks like a chocolate bar but don’t be fooled, this bar of cocoa butter, shea butter and honey is deeply nourishing and soothing.

A couple of brands from across the pond which I’ve discovered recently are Wild Honey Apothecary and Ollie & Max Soap Co. Wild Honey Apothecary use raw honey in their masks which is moisturising and known for its antibacterial properties. I’ve only used their Buttermilk Sandalwood Mask a couple of times as I got it last week but it was love at first try. It’s full of raw honey, organic buttermilk, organic jojoba, organic beeswax, sandalwood powder and essential oil which all work in harmony together to hydrate, soothe and brighten my skin. Ollie & Max Soap Co are an indie brand from Canada and I am absolutely in love with their Coconut Vanilla Deodorant which is aluminium free, organic and 100% natural.  I’ve run out at the minute and desperately need to buy another as it kept me stink-free 24/7. (not pictured)

One of my favourite cleansers comes from the brand Lyonsleaf who are a husband & wife duo that grow some of their own herbs for their products. Their Beauty Balm is my favourite as it features ingredients like clary sage, babassu oil and Palmarosa to cleanse my skin, revealing a lovely glow after.

Last but certainly not least is a brand that is local to me; The Earth Works Cosmetics. Their new limited edition Cedarwood & Bergamot Bath Oil is just heavenly. It’s from their Christmas gift set (sorry if you’re not in the Christmas spirit yet!) and smells so Autumnal and relaxing. Pop a dabble of this into your bath for a truly relaxing, pamper evening! 

Make sure to follow Amber's Blog / Twitter / Instagram / YouTube

7 Nov 2014

Five Faves Friday

This weeks friday faves are an eclectic bunch. I've been busy trying to organise myself for the upcoming weekend as I'm going to visit my mum for two whole weeks and help her move house! I'm excited to see the pets, but not so much all of that cleaning. Who else has boxes and boxes of their childhood toys stored away in the attic? hopefully not just me. 

Beauty wise I'm pretty smitten with my new Yuli Cocoon Elixir which I purchased as a little birthday treat for myself. It's a gorgeous soothing toner, and we all know I'm a toner floozy. I was a little worried this was breaking me out as I've had a crazy flare up the past few days in just one area of my face but I'm crossing my fingers it's not this as it's so lovely! 
Another fave which I reviewed in full in my previous post is the Aurelia Firm & Revitalise Dry Body Oil*. The scent is growing on me day by day still and I just love the feel of this oil, it's keeping my skin in tip top condition.
Lastly for beauty is the Jane Iredale Glow Time BB Cream*. I am utterly obsessed with Jane Iredale, I see them as a very classic brand and their recent packaging update means they look the part in my makeup bag. So fancy. This BB cream is crazy good. I have BB5, which is a pale yellow toned shade, I thought BB1 or 3 would be better but they're SO pale they'd make me look dead, this is the perfect match. The coverage is excellent, it's more like a foundation with a flawless satin finish. I'm in love. 

Next up is a doughnut pan!! how random. I literally got this yesterday and haven't even used it yet but I'm so excited to bake some doughnuts (or donut?) later on, it's already a favourite. I will tweet my first attempt, so beware hahaha. I doubt they'll be pinterest worthy just jet! I have bookmarked so many baked doughnut recipes that I'm going to have them coming out of my ears ;) not that that's a bad thing... right?
Last up are my new boots! I needed a pair of flat, cosy boots that didn't leak desperately and picked up this pair in Primark for a measly £12. They feel really sturdy and for £12 I won't complain when they've fallen apart in march after wearing them relentlessly all winter. 

5 Nov 2014

Obsessed With: Aurelia Firm & Revitalise Dry Body Oil

In just a few weeks I've gone from someone who avoided any and all body oils (and even body lotions, such a faff) to someone who can't get enough of body oils! Where have they been all my life?!

It all changed the moment Aurelia's Firm & Revitalise Dry Body Oil* arrived a few weeks ago. Now I never really understood what a dry body oil was before, how can an oil be dry? It just made no sense to me at all, simply because I'd never tried one. If you never have either then the best description I can give is that this oil is not greasy, not at all. It's more like a liquid than an actual thick oil, sinking into skin at the speed of light. Even speedier when skin is damp.
I just applied a drop to my arm to help describe the scent, I'll be honest and say it's not the most beautiful scent in the world, but that's just my opinion because I'm not much of a rose fan, but it is pretty lovely & has grown on me a lot, probably because I love Lavender so much. It's strong, even just from a drop I can smell it clearly. Think floral but not flowery. The essential oils blend together really well to create a cohesive, calming scent that makes this an essential after a nighttime shower.

I try to remember to take this into the bathroom with me when I go for a shower, so that I can easily apply it to damp skin at the end and I'm good to go. However I do often forget to take it with me and apply it a little later on, hoping my skin is still a little damp. This is where the beauty of the dry oil comes into play as it really doesn't matter if my skin was damp or not, it's still sinks in so easily, there's so greasy feeling, no tackiness or residue left behind, I can put my PJ's on without waiting about freezing to death. Thank you, Aurelia.

The ingredients include macadamia, peach and kukui oils, plus watermelon seed oil, one of my favourites. I was a little concerned that the first ingredient was coco-caprylate but after a quick look on the cosmetic skin database discovered it has a rating of zero (that's good) and is a coconut alcohol, which I assume is what makes this oil dry. Either way it's certainly making my skin feel incredibly soft... what winter?
I also have to point out the simply beautiful, classic Aurelia packaging, a brown glass bottle and their peachy pink label with golden accents, it certainly looks as expensive as it feels. What's more I've been using this an awful lot and am only just level with the top of the label so I feel it's going to last me a long time, hopefully all of winter. I use about 1 pump of oil per limb, though the pump is a little fussy and needs an update as it can leak a tiny bit, but it's not the end of the world. All is forgiven when your skin is that soft and you're smelling good, am i right?!

Have you tried Aurelia Skincare?