September Birchbox

I’ve been a Birchbox member since July, but forgot to blog the first two boxes I received. So I’ll have to start with Septmeber’s box…which is pretty awesome, I have to say. First of all, let me explain what Birchbox is. You pay a monthly fee – in this case £12.95 (inc P+P) and you get your box of goodies delivered once a month. The contents of your box is 4-6 selected beauty samples. Don’t worry – you aren’t getting sachets of stuff that are worth peanuts – you’re getting decent sized trial samples of great quality products. What you receive in your box usually far outweighs the £12.95 you pay in value. I calculated the contents of one box and there was over £50 worth of products in there. This month is pretty good value too. Let’s take a look at the box and what’s inside!

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Lovely, re-useable, sturdy presentation box.

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Your goodies usually come in a drawstring bag, or a plastic zipper pouch.


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This is what I received this month and here’s the low down on the contents:

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One quibble this month. Birchbox emailed me to ask which ModelCo product I wanted – I had a choice of 2 lipglosses or a mascara. I chose the mascara. They sent a lip gloss. So I do wonder….why both giving us the choice and emailing back and forth to ask? Hmmph! I wasn’t too happy but C’est la vie!

First up – Agave healing Oil.
This stuff is GORGEOUS. It smells like coconuts and tropical fruits and is so easy to use. You pop a small amount of oil into the palm of your hand, rub your hands together to warm the oil and then smooth it on your hair. The result? Shiny, smooth, gorgeous smelling locks. I really love this – it’s my favourite thing in the box. I may have to have the full size!
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Next is the Premae face & Body scrub.
A lovely product that I have so far just used on my face. I am going to get at least 10 face washes out of this little sample pot. This stuff is lovely. It smells great and although it is a scrub, it’s really soft and not abrasive at all. My face feels absolutely amazing once I have washed it all off – soft and moisturized and refreshed. Again, another one I might buy the full size of.

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Next product is the ModelCo lip gloss.
I like their glosses but I’m still sulking about the lack of mascara 😉 It’s non-sticky, looks nice on and is a lovely neutral colour. I already have a few full size ones so probably won’t bother getting one of these, although the sample makes a nice little gloss to pop into small going out clutch 2 (2)b

It’s Potent eye cream by Benefit.
Love this stuff and loved opening my Birchbox to find it inside! Works wonderfully on bags, dark circles and sleep deprived mum’s wrinkles! 😉 At least a couple of week’s worth of applications inside. Winner!


Caudalie Divine Oil.
It really is divine. I was getting low on night cream and so when this came, it was a godsend. I used it last night and it made my skin feel so soft and calm and I woke up with just a little bit of a glow. The face scrub, plus this, plus the eye cream means I have good skin right now! photo 5

Finally, there was a pack of dried strawberries – I ate them, they were nice, would have preferred another product but never mind! Then there was this cute photo holder…..going to pop a picture of my son in the clip and use it on my desk at work. Happy days indeed!
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This is my face after a good night’s sleep and using some of the lovely products from my Birchbox.
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I am quite pleased with the results….at 40 years old you either regret never looking after your skin or you keep mixing it up and trying new products. Luckily, I have moisturized since 16 years of age and always made time for my skin. I stay out of the sun and use SPF wherever possible. I love trying new products and Birchbox are very clever to set up this monthly scheme – I am sure lots of people try and then buy! But it’s ingenious too because for just £12.95 you can get enough high end beauty products to keep you going for a few weeks. If you can spare the monthly fee, I would highly recommend Birchbox.

Have you already tried Birchbox? Are you a subscriber and if so, what did you think of this month’s box?



bareMinerals Bareskin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation Review

The advert I keep hearing (and seeing on Youtube) asks….”Can a foundation love your skin?”
bareMinerals reckon they have made a foundation that does. You can check out the product here.


The Hype:
Ultra-thin silky texture, non-chemical SPF 20, reveals bright, more even-looking skin tone and a no-make up look and feel, skin loving formula, hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, coconut-derived base with jojoba-coated mineral pigments and lilac plant stem stells & Vitamin C……



The Reality:
An initially offputting runny formula delivers amazing results, leaving your skin feeling as though you aren’t wearing any make-up at all, whilst giving great coverage to combat blemishes, discolouring and tiredness. Long lasting, non greasy and easy to blend.

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My Samples, courtesy of So-Post.

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One tiny drop goes a long, long, long……long way!!photo 5

Partially blended. This is so you can see how far that tiny drop goes….and will continue to go when you blend more.

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Obligatory before face.

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After face, with a close up on my skin. As you can see, the shade Ivory isn’t spot on for me so I need to experiment to find my shade which I think will have more pinkish tones that yellow.

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I’m actually really pleased with this foundation. It doesn’t sit in my pores looking cakey and undoubtedly clogging them further. It brightened my skin and did give a good, flawless, soft finish. My skin feels amazing! It doesn’t feel like I’m wearing any make up at all and my skin feels silky and soft.

I will definitely be investing in a bottle of this once my samples run out. I just need to find my perfect shade.

Have you tried this product yet? What did you think?




Why we drink water Pt.2 – an update

Following on from this post, I thought that those of you who might be following the water plan or were considering giving it a go would appreciate an update.

4 weeks ago, I went from barely any water intake at all to drinking at least a 1 litre jug a day – usually more. Everything was going really well until my entire family contracted a nasty virus that made us unable to keep any food or water down for a few days, which somewhat upset my plan and set it back rather a lot. When I did feel able to drink again after 2 days, it wasn’t much and I was fighting nausea every step of the way. I lost 6lbs in weight and looked like hell, so it was hardly the glowing results I had hoped for! So I have decided to hit the re-set button and start over.

A few results I can share with you now, however.  I started to see a definite improvement in my urine. It is barely coloured anymore and never smells as it previously had. My joints seem more supple and I no longer struggle to get out of my seat at work or hobble about as my body adjusts after 3 hours of sitting at a desk. My skin has REALLY improved. I have no blemishes at all, and my skin seems smooth and more plumped out. I’m still waiting for something to change under my eyes…..nothing really noticeable as yet.

I’ve had a couple of headaches, but that’s all. As a migraine sufferer, I am used to twice weekly headaches as well as monthly migraines. It’s still not completely better, but it is much improved.

That’s all I can think of for now, but I am hoping to update you again in a month, with my ‘after’ picture. In the meantime, why not click the link above, have a read and try this for yourself?


Why we drink water…..

Can drinking water take years off your face?

After reading this article over at the Mail Online, I was inspired to try my own experiment. After all, a picture like this is certainly enough to spur anyone on:


After thinking about how much water I drank each day and admitting the answer was none (I drank tea, coffee and coke!), I decided that the article might be onto something. I suffer from frequent headaches, often crippling ones which in turn become migraines and incapacitate me for a couple of days at a time. I have noticed that my skin is less firm and there are dark circles and bags under my eyes.  I put it down to having a 16 month old who wakes at 6am no matter what, and turning 40 years of age. But what if I am depriving my own body of the very thing it needs most in order to function correctly?

Top 10 reasons why we should drink water (thank you Abby Phon at

Top 10 Benefits of Drinking Water: Don’t Medicate, Hydrate!

1. Increases Energy & Relieves Fatigue – Since your brain is mostly water, drinking it helps you think, focus and concentrate better and be more alert. As an added bonus, your energy levels are also boosted.

2. Promotes Weight Loss 
– Removes by-products of fat, reduces eating intake (by filling up your tummy if consumed prior to meals), reduces hunger (hello natural appetite suppressant), raises your metabolism and has zero calories.

3. Flushes Out Toxins 
– Gets rid of waste through sweat and urination which reduces the risk of kidney stones and UTI’s (urinary tract infections).

4. Improves Skin Complexion 
– Moisturizes your skin, keeps it fresh, soft, glowing and smooth. Gets rid of wrinkles. It’s the best anti-aging treatment around.

5. Maintains Regularity
 – Aids in digestion as water is essential to digest your food and prevents constipation.

6. Boosts Immune System
 – A water guzzler is less likely to get sick. And who wouldn’t rather feel healthy the majority of the time? Drinking plenty of water helps fight against flu, cancer and other ailments like heart attacks.

7. Natural Headache Remedy
 – Helps relieve and prevent headaches (migraines & back pains too!) which are commonly caused by dehydration.

8. Prevents Cramps & Sprains
 – Proper hydration helps keep joints lubricated and muscles more elastic so joint pain is less likely.

9. Puts You in a Good Mood
 – When the body is functioning at its best, you will feel great and be happy.

10. Save Money!
 – Water is FREE. Even if you choose bottled/filtered water, it’s STILL cheaper than that high sugar and fat-filled latte.
I started drinking a huge jug of water a day 2 days ago.  This is day 3, and I have already noticed some slight changes. Because I sit at a desk all day and am very busy, I often forget to get up and move around and when I do, I’m stiff and achy – particularly my right ankle which I have sprained very badly on 3 separate occasions over the years. Yesterday I got up to go for a bathroom break and noticed I had a spring in my step and no aches or stiffness. I thought I was just having a good day and didn’t put it down to water intake until I read the article above, point. 8.

My urine is no longer dark yellow. Now it’s a light yellow….hopefully soon to become clear!
I’m still waiting for the skin miracle, but it’s early days yet. My selfie is below. I’ll keep you posted and post pictures and updates as I go along. It can’t hurt, right?
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What I’m using on my face

You know how I previously blogged about investing in your skin? Well I did mention that I constantly tried cleansers in my never ending search for fantastic products for my face.

At the moment, my new favourite is Ocean Salt scrub from Lush. Suitable for both face and body, what makes this product so amazing is that it’s packed full to the lid with natural ingredients that are fantastic for your skin. These include:

  • Fine Sea Salt
  • Fresh grapefruit infusion
  • Fresh Organic Lime
  • Avocado Butter
  • Extra Virgin Coconut oil
  • Lime oil
  • Seaweed and Violet leaf absolute

The product promises to cleanse, tone, soften, refresh, nourish and hydrate. Quite a promise for a little plastic black jar of gritty stuff. But guess what? It delivers! Oh, and you may as well add brightens, smooths, stimulates – and tastes delicious to the list! I’m only using this in the morning, but it perfectly prepares my skin for make up primer by softening and brightening it. It smells good, feels amazing and although the price is a little steep, it does last.

Large tub of 250g for £13.25 or smaller tub of 120g for £7.25.  Go in store and ask about this product and they will happily demo it for you on your hand/arm.