Magazine Freebies Alert! Ft. Benefit and Eyeko

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It’s that time of year again when the glossy monthly magazines give away great beauty freebies and this year Elle and In Style did not disappoint!

This month, InStyle magazine have teamed up with Eyeko and are giving away 5x different products; Eyeko’s Skinny Liquid Eyeliner, Fat Liquid Eyeliner, Black Magic Mascara, Brow Gel and their Lengthening Skinny Brush Mascara. I ended up picking the Lengthening Skinny Skinny Brush Mascara as I’ve heard really great things about Eyeko’s mascara.

Elle magazine however are giving away the new Benefit Goof Proof Brow pencil. If you saw my beauty wish list earlier this week, you’ll know I was eager to give this a go, so I just had to pick up Elle magazine this month! Unfortunately you’re unable to flick through all the copies of Elle on the magazine stand to find your shade as I believe they are only giving away shade 2, however this is still a pretty neutral shade which will still suit a lot of people or at least give everyone a chance to see how it feels/look. Plus Benefit are also giving away a free eyebrow wax for every reader!

I’m looking forward to giving these two products a go and will let you know my thoughts. At roughly £4 for each magazine, it’s worth picking them up to give the products a go rather than paying full price and finding you don’t like them. So run to your nearest magazine stand now and grab these while you can!

Have you seen any other good magazines freebies lately?

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EU Vote – Here’s how I’m deciding…

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I’m not usually one for talking politics, in my personal life or on my blog but I do feel it’s really important to vote tomorrow. The reason I wanted to write this post today was to let people know you’re not alone if you’re still unsure on how to vote.

If you’re anything like me, you probably still haven’t 100% made your mind up yet – and that’s ok!! The whole is really confusing and no one really seems to be sure what will happen if we stay IN the EU or OUT. One thing is for sure though – if you don’t make your vote tomorrow,  you have no right to complain about the outcome because you didn’t have your say in the first place.

Here’s how I’m planning on how to vote –

Do some research – everyone is talking about, every newspaper is having their say and there are tons of articles online to help you decide. BBC will always be a great resource because they aren’t biased. Get all the facts before making your decision.

Think about the values that really matter to you – Whether it be; Climate Change, Immigration, Crime, Equality,  Job Welfare, etc. focus on how the vote will impact these and it might help you make your decision.

Talk it out – Some people want to share their vote, other don’t and both are perfectly acceptable but I’ve had a lot of discussion with friends, colleagues and family members about their thoughts. It often ends in some health debate and is a really useful way to look at things a different way.

You may be thinking –  “how is my one little vote really make a difference? I might as well not bother voting” but you’re totally wrong! Every vote counts, and as I said before, if you don’t vote tomorrow you have no right to complain about the outcome. So think about it and do whatever feels right to you. There is no right or wrong answer, it’s just important to vote.

Hopefully this will help in making your mind up for tomorrow’s vote! Will you be voting?

 

The Beauty Wish List

  
With pay-day round the corner, I’ve  already been scouting around all the beauty websites, I now have a beauty wish list as long as my arm! Here are biggest culperts cutrently sitting on top of my wish list – 

Dior BB Cream – Since it launched, I’ve brought a tube of this every summer! It lasts me for the entire season and makes for the perfect base during the warmer months.

Sleek Cream Contour Palette – Sleek always bring it with their palettes! They are on of my favourite high-street brands because they create great quality palettes that sometimes give even my MAC palettes a run for their money. There are only a handful of high-street brands who have attempted the cream contour colour, so excited to see the quality of this Sleek palette.

Beauty Boxes – I’ve wanted to start up another beauty box subscription for ages, but just don’t know which one to go for. I’ve had Glossybox before, but never tried the Birchboxes…any recommendations with which I should pick?

Origins GinZing Peel-Off Mask – I’m a massive fan of Origins skincare and a big fan of a peel mask, so it’s a win win with this pick. Definitely want to give this a go! 

Benefits Goof Proof Eyebrow Pencil – Benefit are about the launch an even more extended range to their eyebrow collection. Brows are something I’ve been getting more and more into recently but if I’m honest, I’m still struggling to find the perfect products for my brows. Being a ‘good proof’ pencil means I can’t go far wrong…right?! 

Now let’s wish for a big unexpected bonus in this month’s pay packet so I can try them all…!

What’s currently on your beauty wish list? Have you tried any of these products – what were your thoughts?

Palmers Cocoa Butter Filp Balm

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Whilst having a browse around Superdrug (like ya do!), I came across a new lip balm from Palmers. It caught my eye has it’s a very similar shape to the EOS lip balms which are a US brand that has recently become more available in the UK. The EOS lip balms are really great and come in various amazing scents however as it’s a US brand, they are quite pricey in comparison to other lip balms on the market – usually £6.50 each! I was therefore quite pleased that Palmers have brought out their own version of the sphere lip balm!

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In comparison to the EOS lip balm, the packaging is slightly different as rather than a twist cap, the Palmers version has a flip lip.  It’s only packaging but it’s nice that it’s not a completely carbon copy on the EOS brand. I actually really like the sphere shape packaging which is why I wanted to the test Palmers version. The shape of the balm makes it really quick and easy to apply the balm to your lips and I also really like how the balm packaging sits nicely on my desk – it’s the little thing! The lipstick/tube style lip balms always tended to roll off my desk so I end up losing then, and even when I stand it on its end, the slightest knock will always knock it over and send it rolling straight on the floor.  The strange shape is also a great conversation piece too! When people have noticed it my desk, they have mistaken it for a cherry tomato, a bouncy ball and even a clown’s nose – haha!

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Formulation wise, the balm is good and ticks all the boxes you want for a lip balm. In comparison the EOS balm, I think the Palmer’s version is a little bit more wet  which is think is down to the Cocoa Butter in the balm whereas when you apply to EOS version is more waxy – so it really depends what your preference is. At the end of the day though it moisturises your lips, and the Palmers Cocoa Butter Flip Balm does it a fraction the price. The scent of the Palmers Flip balms are also really nice. I tried the Juicy Watermelon one but there is also coconut and mango available too.

If you’re thinking testing the EOS lip balms but not keen on spending £6.50 on just a lip balm then definitely try the Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Flip Balm.

Have you tried the Palmer Cocoa Butter Flip Balms?

Shower Love: Soap & Glory

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It dawned on me in the shower last week that over the last four years there has always been at least one Soap & Glory product in my shower routine. Whether it be a shower gel, an exfoliator, an in-shower cream, Soap & Glory have always been on top of my list for in-shower pampering. Their products not only feel amazing but smell divine! So, I thought I would share with you what I’m currently loving from Soap & Glory –

Soap & Glory Clean on Me Shower Gel – I think everyone has heard on this shower gel as it’s a classic from the Soap & Glory range. I don’t always buy this as my normal shower gel because it’s a little bit more money that I am willing to spend on a shower gel (usually £6.50 for 500ml) but I tend to always find this little beauty under the Christmas tree in a gift set which always pleases me! You do however get a large bottle for your money so I do think it’s worth it for a treat. Plus again, it smells amazing!

Soap & Glory Smoothie Oat, Sugar & Shea Breakfast Scrub – This is my 2nd or 3rd pot now. First of all, the scrub is one of the best I’ve used because it contains Shea butter, so whilst you are exfoliating, the scrub leaves your skin moisturised still. Best of all however is the smell!! Oh my goodness, you could eat the damn stuff it smells so good (please don’t though!). It’s a maple scent with bananas, almonds and honey added to the mix too, so if you aren’t a fan of the sweet scents maybe give the Sugar Crush scrub a go as its more citrus smelling.

Soap & Glory Exfoliating Gloves – This is most recent purchase from Soap & Glory. Although I love the Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub, I use it more of a treat during my Sunday pamper routines. With the Sun slowly making more of appearance nowadays however, I want my skin permanently silky and shining, so tend to use these gloves with the Soap & Glory Clean on Me Shower Gel during the week. These are just the right amount of scrubbiness (it’s a word, ok!), if you know what I mean. They aren’t to hash on the skin but it’s enough to give your skin a buff to leave your limps glowing. They also last a long time too. Other exfoliating gloves I’ve tried in the past (generally cheap ones) has fallen apart have a couple of uses, but after a month they are still holding their shape.

What are your favourite Soap & Glory products? What would you recommend trying out next?

Slimming World Sundays #3

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This week I thought I would share you with you some of my favourite meals I’ve had over the past couple of weeks. Seven weeks on plan and I’ve currently lost 11lbs. I’ll be honest, my progress is a little slower than I had hoped however I have had a couple of disaster weeks with festivals or weekends away which meant I’ve either stayed the same on the scales or put on 1/2 lb one week.Nevertheless, I am still enjoying the plans and fingers crossed in a couple of weeks I can make it to my stone award!

My top favourite meals of this week have been –

Steak salad from Singer Tavern, London (top left hand corner) – We all went to the local pub at work for a colleagues leaving do and they had some really nice salad choices on the menu, which meant it was easy to stick to plan. My biggest tip when you know you are eating out is to check the menu online before you go, that way you know exactly what to order when you get there without panicking. I also said no to having croutons on my salad – how good was I?!

Subway Salad (centre photo) – Sticking on the salad train, this is always a firm favourite of mine and will feature in my weekly food diary at least once a week. Subway is great when you need something for lunch. All the salad is free and its all about the double chicken portion, which is also free! Its then topped out with the Sweet Onion sauce which is 1.5 syns per serving – simple!

Overnight Oats (bottom left hand corner) – I love overnight oats for breakfast! I make mine with 30g oats (healthy extra B), a Mullerlight vanilla yogurt (free) topped off with strawberries and blueberries (free).This week however I made my pots up with frozen berries the night before and it worked just as well. Using frozen berries means I don’t have to worry about buying fresh fruit every 2-3days, plus it does work out cheaper too.

Nando’s (top right hand corner) – If you’re a big fan of Nando’s you will be glad you know it’s a great place when your eating on the SW plan. I had butterfly chicken without the skin which I count as 2 syns for any oil/marinate they use, spicy rice (1.5 syns) with corn on the cob (free as long as you don’t use that butter!). I love this meal as it means you can still go out for dinner and socialise with friend whilst not damaging your weight lost.

If you are interested in keeping up to date with what I eat on Slimming World or want to know more about some of the other meals I’ve had this week, I have a separate Slimming World Instagram account you can follow – search ‘stephi_sw

What are you favourite healthy meals?

 

Beauty Books – Bobbi Brown & Lisa Eldridge

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You may have noticed in a couple of my photo backgrounds, two beauty books on my shelf – Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge and The Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual. They appear in a lot of my beauty photos which appear on my blog, so I thought it was only right to bring them into the spot light and share my thoughts on both of these.

Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual 

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I got this about three or four years ago and it was the first book which started my beauty book collection. This book is great and will tell you everything you possibly need to know about makeup if you a beginner right through to pro! Every aspect of makeup is broken down into chapters – Equipment, Skin, Face, Lips and Eyes and then goes into more details in other chapters if you are a makeup artist. Bobbi Brown impressively covers makeup for all sorts of different occasions and ages too such as; makeup for teens, ageless beauty and even makeup during pregnancy – which personally I’ve never seen being covered anywhere else!

For me, this isn’t a book which I picked up and read cover to cover. It’s more of a book that I’ve picked up to dip into different sections when I’m struggling which my makeup, my skin or looking for some inspiration. More recently I have also used this a teaching tool as I’ve been asked to do friends’ makeup for photos or for a special occasion so I’ve been reading up on tips to give the best finish in front of the camera. There is also a chapter on Bridal makeup too, which is coming in handy when I’ve been planning what to do with my makeup for my big day next year 🙂

Definitely a book I would recommend if you are into makeup and interested in improving your skills. It’s great to keep on your book shelf ready to use when you might need it.

Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge 

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This is my favourite of the two books and since receiving this as a gift last Christmas, I still pick this book up on a regular occasion and dive into a new section/part of makeup history. Rather than being like a manual giving you makeup tips, like the Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual, this is a history lesson about my all time favourite subject – makeup! This book is broken down into two sections – The Ancient Palette which talks more about the history of makeup dating back thousands of years ago, and the second section is The Business of Beauty where Lisa talks about beauty and the media, beauty pioneers and future of makeup.

First of all, I need to just bow at Lisa Eldridge’s feet because this book must of taken so much hard work. The history details she goes into is amazing and it makes for a really fascinating read. Even just to flicked through the pages, the photography is exquisite and makes for a beautiful coffee table book. One of my favourite section of the book which is the makeup muses where Lisa takes a makeup icon and talks about their makeup and how that person influenced the world of beauty. My favourite makeup muses is of Audrey Hepburn as she has always been an icon of mine, so it was really nice to learn a little bit more behind her look.

If you love makeup, you need to have this book in your life. Likewise, if you have a friend or family member who is into their makeup, this book is perfect for a gift for a birthday or for Christmas.

What are your favourite beauty books?