Thursday, 26 February 2015

My Week In Instagram Pictures


Hello there! I hope you're all well! I'm going to do things slightly different today as I fancied a change from the same old same old. I joined Instagram a little while ago so I thought that I would share with you a few photos from the past week so you can see what I get up to when I'm not blogging. To be honest I haven't been up to much but life looks so much more interesting through pictures doesn't it?

So last week, I bought one of those mug/jar/cup thingamajigs. I guess it is a mason jar with a handle. Anyways, it was only 63p which was weirdly satisfying. It came with a stripy straw which is adorable but the straw did disintegrate after a day which is to be expected considering it was made of paper. At least this has opened up the prospect of straw shopping. How sad does that sound?! I'm actually quite excited for it though so if anyone knows where to get any pretty straws let me know in the comments. The benefits of having a cup like this, except looking like a five year old, are that I can now balance it on the arm of the couch without worrying too much about spillages. Anything to make life easier!

So after my bargain buy, I made my way to the local park for a family outing. It's so nice to have a wander around the park when there is noone there. My little boy adored feeding the ducks and playing on the swings and I must admit I may possibly have enjoyed it more than him.

If you regularly read my blog, you'll know that I changed my normal brand of bleach to Bleach London. I was really pleased with the results but seeing as I've already done a post about it, I won't ramble on. If you'd like to read my review you can find it here.

The next big thing to happen last week was I changed my bedding. This obviously isn't life changing and I promise you it is a regular thing but how satisfying is it to get into clean sheets? Plus they have pink cath kidston style flowers on it. It definitely makes waking up a little bit easier. Only a little.

I dip in and out of hobbies regularly but I'm pleased to share with you all that I've started cross stitching again! I'm going to finish a few more of these and then I'll do a blog post to share what I have planned for them. I'm actually finding sewing really relaxing at the moment so I'm going to sew my little heart out until I get fed up.

Finally, I had a day of shopping yesterday and I popped into Lush for some bath bombs as I've ran out. I was actually searching for Rose Queen but they were out of stock so I was introduced to their new bath bomb which is similar. It's called Rose Bombshell and it smells gorgeous. I haven't tried it yet but I can't wait to use it. I also popped into Paperchase and admired their lovely stationary. It's hard not to admire everything in there to be honest but a lot has been added to my wishlist.

So it hasn't been the most action packed week but it has been a relaxing one. If you'd like to find me on Instagram my username is soiesm

Have you done much this week? 



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Monday, 23 February 2015

Wardrobe Organisation: Five Ikea Storage Hacks For Under £15


My wardrobe is the bane of my life. I am constantly struggling to squeeze things in and squeeze things out of it. I'm always in need of some extra space whether it comes to storing beauty products or places to house my clothes. A while back we got new wardrobes to address the situation but mine still ended up full to the brim. My boyfriend had a great idea of modifying the wardrobe slightly to fit my needs with a little help from Ikea. Here are my five storage hacks which allowed me to keep my beloved clothes.


1.Komplement Extendable Rail (£5)
This is my favourite one. An extendable rail, why hadn't I heard of this before?! My boyfriend attached the rail halfway down my wardrobe and then you pull it to where you'd like and fix it to the top rail. I then separated my clothes into dresses/jumpsuits etc. basically anything long and hung it on the top rail as it has more room. On the bottom rail, I hung my jumpers, tops, blouses etc. and they fit perfectly. Now I have enough, ok kind of enough, room to hang my clothes. Plus it is easier finding what I need than digging through one unorganised rack!


2. Garnityr Set of Seven Storage Boxes (£13)
This one comes in a set of seven boxes. You get two large boxes, two medium and three smaller boxes. In the larger box I store underwear or accessories like scarves and this sits in the shelving area of my wardrobe. I also have a large one underneath my bottom clothes rail which stores clothes that I don't want to throw away but I haven't really worn. You could store leggings or even beauty products in here its just so handy to have. The smaller boxes are surprisingly long meaning that you can store lots of socks in here or whatever you fancy. You get so many in this set that my boyfriend uses the rest in his wardrobe so it's great value for money.


3. The Extendable Clothes Rail Part 2
Yes, it's back again. I told you I loved it. Would you believe that this rail is fitted in my shelving area of my wardrobe? This is perfect because the rail extends or shortens meaning that it can fit inside smaller areas. I use this rail to hang my trousers and jeans so that they don't get crumpled from being folded in a pile. I can even fit my storage boxes underneath this and still have room.



4.Nordrana Storage Baskets (£8)
How cute are these woven bags. I actually have these in the bathroom, my room and my little boys room as they are so handy. They come in a set of four. A large basket, a medium basket and two smaller ones. I use the smaller ones for cotton wool and the larger ones to squeeze in any extra beauty products I have lying around. Again they can be used for socks or accessories or anything really. I love the woven look of them, they just look so pretty and they don't take up much space.
SKUBB Storage case IKEA You can even keep the storage case under the bed – perfect for extra bedlinen, pillows or covers.
5.Skubb Storage Boxes (£5)
I use these on top of the wardrobes and because they are white, they blend in pretty well. In here I keep my pregnancy clothes handbags and dresses from special occasions. Basically it is stuff that I don't want to throw away but I won't be wearing in a hurry. These boxes surprisingly have a lot of room and they zip up to protect your clothes from dust. These could even fit under your bed. It's a lot easier on the eye than a pile of clothes lurking about. You could even keep bedding or spare pillows in here.

I hope you enjoyed my storage tips as they have really helped me to take an organised approach to the mess that was my wardrobe. Plus who doesn't enjoy a trip to Ikea!



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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Bleach London: White Toner

Bleach London Toner
Bleach London Toner

So on my last post, I explained how I tried Bleach London Total Bleach and I loved it. If you'd like to see how I got on you can find it here. Anyone who dyes their hair from dark to blonde will understand the hard work you have to put in to remove any orange or yellow tones. I always have a toner on hand such as Touch Of Silver to help tackle any brassy tones although I've only ever tried a shampoo based toner. Seeing as I had changed my bleaching routine, I thought I'd change my toner routine too. 

Bleach London's White Toner is a dye based toner. I was slightly worried about using this as I try to avoid any added damage to my hair but I've been laying off the hair dryer for a while now so I thought I'd give it a go. This retails at £7 but Boots have a three for two offer on Bleach London products at the moment which is why I'm giving it a go. The box contained instructions, gloves, a bottle of developing lotion, a tube of colourant and a reincarnation mask.


Application:

The instructions advised to apply the toner onto wet, towel dried hair so I did so. I started by sectioning my hair and applying the mixture from roots to tip. To be honest I did this a bit haphazardly, I should have asked my boyfriend to help to ensure that I covered everything. I continued doing this until I got to the top of my head and massaged it all in. I had heard people say that you need a few bottles of this to cover your head but I found I had more than enough. I left the toner on for 15  minutes and washed it off. 

I was a little worried as usually products that remove brassy tones are purple or blue in colour but this was white so I was hoping the dye in the toner would give my hair an extra boost. After I washed the toner out I applied the reincarnation mask and my hair felt even better than it did the first time I tried it.


Results:

I'm not sure how I feel about the results of the toner to be honest. It definitely lightened quite a bit of my hair and toned out part of the yellow but I was expecting white hair. I found my hair was quite multi-tonal. Some of my hair turned silver/gray, some parts turned yellow and some were a whiteish shade. It isn't too obvious but I have spent a while over analysing it in the mirror. I think I had set my expectations way to high as I was picturing a clean, bright, white shade but maybe I'm just being picky. I may apply this again the next time I do my roots to see if I can get the rest the same colour.

If you are looking for a toner to remove brassiness then this may be perfect for you. This toner did that part of the job but I wanted it to be all one colour. Preferably white. I'm not sure if this is caused by my hair being more porous when it has just been bleached or whether it is because I had used a different brand bleach on my roots to what I had used on the lengths. The toner has similar results to the Touch of Silver shampoo which is cheaper although, Bleach London's did do a better job at toning out the yellow. I'll update this post if I use this toner the next time.


If any one can recommend a toner to get my hair white, not gray, I'd really appreciate it!


UPDATE: I've found a toner that I love, if you'd like to read my review click here


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Monday, 16 February 2015

Bleach London: Total Bleach Review

Bleach London Total Bleach
Bleach London Total Bleach
Bleach London Total Bleach Reincarnation Mask

I'm so lazy when it comes to bleaching my roots, I just can't be bothered as it takes forever. I like to embrace the look of dark roots but my hair grows so fast that I was starting to look like I had ombre hair. I usually use Schwartzkopf Live XXL Absolute Platinum but I noticed that Boots had three for two on Bleach London products. I picked up two boxes of Total Bleach and a box of White Toner and hoped for the best.

I was a little apprehensive as I didn't know how my hair would react to another brand but I still have my hair so all went well. The box contained two packs of bleach powder, a bottle of developer, a mixing bowl, a brush, a pair of gloves and a reincarnation hair mask. The instructions stated to mix the two bleach powders with the developer and to apply it onto my roots avoiding any previously bleached hair. Once applied, you leave it for 40 minutes and rinse.

Application:
The fact that this was in a bowl made it so much easier to apply the bleach compared to applying it from a bottle. I found the bleach itself was a lot thicker than Live XXL which meant it was less messy plus I didn't need as much. It was much quicker using this for some reason which saved me a bad back later on. I usually have to buy two boxes of bleach as my hair is quite thick but one box of Total Bleach covered my roots perfectly meaning I've saved money as I now have a spare box! Each box retails at £7 but apparently they regularly have three for two offers on Bleach London in Boots.

Results:
I was advised years ago to heat up my roots with a hairdryer to speed up the developing time. I've never been keen on the idea but it was the only way to ensure my roots weren't all orange. I decided to do a tester with Total Bleach and not hair dry my roots to see how light it would go on its own. I was able to have a cup of tea and watch Coronation Street instead of hunching over with a hair dryer for 40 minutes so that definitely put it in my good books. I washed it off after 40 minutes and I was shocked to find my roots were brighter than my already bleached hair? I'm completely blown away at how well it handled my dark roots. I do have some pale yellow/slightly orange patches but nowhere near as bad or as much as usual. I have the Bleach London White Toner to apply anyways so I'll do a blog post after I've applied it tonight.

Reincarnation Mask:
I know you can buy this separately so I thought that I'd mention my thoughts on the mask that was included. Usually in my old bleach kit you would get a small tube to apply to your hair after you've bleached it but there was only enough for one application and it wasn't amazing. Bleach London actually give you a tube that you can get two or three uses out of it maybe even more if you have shorter hair. The quality of it is pretty remarkable. My hair felt beautiful after I had washed it and it didn't feel stiff from the bleach or damaged at all. I probably would buy the mask separately if I hadn't already gotten three tubes of it in all the boxes I bought.

Overall, I'm so pleased that I gave this a shot. I've definitely been converted to Bleach London. I'm now really tempted to try their wash out dyes. Have you tried any Bleach London products? If you've used any of their wash out products let me know how it went!

I've also reviewed Bleach London's White Toner. If you're interested I'll leave a link here.

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Friday, 13 February 2015

Pretty In Pink: My Top Five Pink Lipsticks

Best pink lipsticks
Best pink lipsticks
Best pink lipsticks

Hello my lovelies, I have some huge apologising to do! I've been a very bad blogger and had a small break due to losing my memory card. Ok, so I found my memory card a few days ago but then my addiction to Pretty Little Liars grew stronger and I have dedicated every spare minute to catching up on it. Four seasons later and I'm back to my blog. To make it up to my poor little blog, I have decided to do my top five pink lip products just in time for valentines day. It also ties in perfectly to the basic makeup looks I have seen around lately. I find pink shades can be hit and miss especially with my skintone but here are some that work for me. 

1.Natural Collection Tinted Lip Balm (£1.99)

I hadn't tried this brand before and I was having one of those I want to look effortless days so when I spotted this I shoved it in my basket. I'm not usually a lip balm/ gloss kind of girl but I actually really like this. It's great for work/school as it has quite a subtle tint to it. It definitely helps to achieve the 'I woke up like this' look. Another bonus is that this sinks into my lips and feels as though it is hydrating them instead of drying them out. 

2. Rimmel 006 Pink Blush (£4.99)

I remember when I bought this, it was the pink shade that I had dreamed of but could never find. This is perfect for valentines day as it has such a beautiful tone to it and definitely looks kissable. This is a light pink shade but it is half way to barbie pink once applied. I know some girls really suit barbie pink but I'm not one of them so I just apply a little less of the lipstick and blot it and it creates a gorgeous finish. I find that the lasting finish range are a little drying so I just make sure I exfoliate and wear a lip balm underneath it. Any girl who loves a pink lipstick should check this one out.

3.Rimmel Kate 16 (£5.49)

Isn't this such a gorgeous colour?! It has a slight coral tone to it which I think is perfect for coming out of the winter blues as it brightens my day up. When applied to my lips, it looks slightly more pink than my swatch but it does look amazing. Kate never lets me down with her lipsticks. It's such a handy colour to have when you feel like a red is too much but you fancy more than a nude. 

4.MAC Viva Glam Nicki Satin AB1 (£15.50)

This was quite a bold choice for me as it is quite a vibrant pink. I must admit, I had a love hate relationship with this to begin with as the colour can be too bright for my pale little face. I started applying this with a brush and using a little less. After blotting this is truely gorgeous. I like the fact that this is easy to tone down as you can create lots of different looks with it. I'm not sure if you can still buy this range from MAC but I do know they have a Miley Cyrus range which contains a hot pink shade similar to this.

5.Clinique Chubby Stick Mega Melon (£17)

Ok, so who doesn't love chubby sticks? They're so moisturising and super easy to apply. Clinique have a lovely range of shades but here is a pink that skirts the borders of nude. This joins the natural collection lip tint in the "I woke up like this" section. It adds such a subtle tone to my lips so that I don't look completely washed out but it doesn't look like I've put too much effort into my makeup. It also adds a slight sheen to your lips which is so pretty. I find this is quite long lasting and as it is moisturising, it should withstand some lip locking if you're out on a date this Saturday. This is definitely my safe choice if I fancy a change. 

What's your favourite pink shade? 


You May Also Like:
My Top 5 Favourite Lipsticks
Old Hollywood: Mac Russian Red Lipstick 
The £2 Lipgloss: Essence Matte Effect Lipgloss Review

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Thursday, 5 February 2015

The Versatile Blogger Award

The Versatile Blogger Award

Thankyou Shannon from Shannon Stacey for the nomination. I love doing these things although yet again I'm a little late in doing so! I think these are a great way of showing your appreciation for someone's blog and it also allows you to get to know your fellow bloggers better so I guess it's my turn to share some facts with you!

This is how it works...
1. Thank the person who gave you this award, and leave a link to their blog.
2. Tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.
3. Select 15 blogs/bloggers that you've recently discovered or follow regularly.

4. Nominate those 5 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.


7 facts about me:
1. I have a tortoise and two guinea pigs
2. The zip on my skirt once came undone when I stood up on the bus. It fell off completely and I had to wrap it round me and waddle off the bus.
3. I have a habit of starting a book and staying up all night until I finish it
4. I've been bleaching my hair for 7 years, wow that's quite scary
5. I have a lovely little boy who, may I add, is the best little boy in the world
6. When I was younger, I used to pretend I was Celine Dion and do mini performances with my walkman
7. I was a member of the Sooty club when I was little ... yes as in Sooty and Sweep. I'm still not quite sure how or why but I do remember I had a badge that I wore alongside my Spice Girl's one. As you can tell, I was definitely a cool kid ...

I nominate: 
Lucy from Yellow Icing
Genevieve from Vievelle
Charlotte from Fading Tulips
Dora from Bangs Bang
Georgia from Blossoming Day Dreams

The ladies above have some lovely blogs so do them a favour and check them out! Thanks again Shannon for the tag. I didn't realise how difficult it was to think of facts about myself so I hope you enjoyed them!


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Monday, 2 February 2015

New Release: Benefit Roller Lash Mascara Review

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara
Benefit Roller Lash Mascara
Benefit Roller Lash Mascara

I've been so excited since Benefit announced that they were bringing out a new mascara and I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. I've been so poorly lately so after a hard day lying around in bed, my boyfriend brought home a copy of Elle magazine. I know, he's a keeper! He told me that he spotted a sample in it with the word Benefit on it and he knew that I'd love it. He was correct. I didn't realise exactly how crazy everyone was going for this until I looked on Instagram and everyone was talking about it. Benefit have certainly stormed up some hype with this. The question is, is it all just hype? 

Ok, so I have tried this and I must say my first impressions are pretty great. The idea behind Roller Lash is that the brush has been modelled on old velcro rollers by adding small 'hooks' to grab and curl your lashes. For those who use lash curlers, I have read that you wont need to after using this. I'm unsure of this comment though as I don't use lash curlers after an incident I had when I caught my eyelid (don't judge, I was about 10). 


I don't think there is a special technique to using this, I'm assuming it is all in the brush so I applied the mascara like usual. I found that it built up some length quite rapidly which meant that not too many coats were needed. The brush seemed to comb the lashes apart meaning that the mascara didn't clump and it defined each lash perfectly. I accidentally built up too much mascara on one area of lashes so I just used the underside of the brush which combed it out nicely. I'm actually really surprised at how much it defined and dramatised my lashes without looking too harsh.


My previous experience with Benefit mascaras is that they can be quite messy in the sense that it ends up flicking all over your eyelid and underneath whilst you're applying but this time it wasn't the case. The mascara is quite wet but the brush seemed to give me more control over where it was going. I actually love this. 


I was so impressed that I went to take a photo of my lashes but I found that I had misplaced my memory card?! Thankfully I had already taken some photos when I got the magazine but I'm unsure as of yet what I will do for blog posts in the meantime so bare with me. I'm going to keep using this mascara as I've only recently just got it. I'll update this post once I've used it a bit longer. For first impressions, this certainly hasn't done badly at all. It's definitely my favourite Benefit mascara. If you didn't grab the magazine in time ,as I know there has been a mad rush, the full size will be released in stores on February 26th so it isn't too long a wait. I'd definitely recommend it.


Have you tried Roller Lash yet? 


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