Saturday, 24 September 2016

Bondi Sands Gradual Tanning Foam Review


I wouldn't call myself a regular tanner, and I'm afraid to say I don't honour Tanning Thursday or see it as a day of celebration. However, from time to time, I do enjoy marinating in DHA, and waking up the next day with a golden glow.

The one tanning brand I have always used, and keep going back to is Bondi Sands. Australian made and not too expensive, it has always drawn me as a brand with a variety of products to choose from. I have been using the Self Tanning Foam in Light/Medium (read my full review HERE) for a couple of years now, and have also tried the new Liquid Gold product (a tanning oil, where no 'wash off is required' – branded for convenience. I will do a review on this product soon!).

Recently, I have been using the Bondi Sands Gradual Tanning Milk to maintain and enhance my tan, whilst moisturising my body. While this works a treat, I was pulled in by the sound of the Gradual Tanning Foam. The Gradual Tanning Foam has the exact same benefits as the milk, except that it is in a foam formula. It even has the same scent, Cocoa Butter.

I definitely prefer the Gradual Tanning Milk over the Gradual Tanning Foam. I find that the Foam leaves my skin extremely sticky and does not sink in properly, unlike the milk which you don't notice is there after a while. I also found that it took a lot longer to sink into my skin. In terms of the colour, I found that it maintains the tan fine but does not make you any darker. Which is fine by me. It made my tan from the Self-tanning foam last for more than its usual 7 days.

The main problem I have with this product, is that it made me break out in an itchy, bobbly rash... I don't usually have sensitive skin, and I've not had a problem with any of the other tanning products I have used before from Bondi Sands. I wouldn't recommend using the product everyday, perhaps every other day if you have sensitive skin. I feel like I have to use it now as tanning products aren't the cheapest on the shelves!

The price for this product is £12.99 which is ever so slightly more pricey than the milk. At the moment it is on offer at Superdrug, literally a day after I paid full price for it which is a bit annoying! I would recommend the Gradual Tanning Milk over the Gradual Tanning foam, which is also on offer at the moment, so go grab a bottle! 

Have any of you tried this product before? What other brands would you recommend?

Monday, 19 September 2016

The Mysterious Disappearance of SugarPlumPosts…

Who? Sugarplumposts? Exactly… so where have I been these last few months? When I ask myself that question I start to think… what exactly have I been doing?! I have been nowhere, I have done nothing. I moved to a new city, got a new job and it has taken over my life. I have a boring routine… work, sleep, work, sleep…then the weekend arrives and I find I’m bored every weekend trying to think of something to do before the work, sleep cycle takes place again.

I completely gave up blogging. I thought what is the point? I don’t have the time anymore and no one reads it anyway! I felt completely unmotivated. I don’t have any other hobbies… I don’t play sport, I don’t do knitting much anymore, and I don’t play the piano anymore... I even invested in some sports clothes and a yoga mat with the mantra,’I WILL TAKE UP YOGA. I WILL TAKE UP YOGA…’ with only doing one session and realising I am the most unflexible human alive. I was starting to get stuck in the thought that I am only 22 and have no life apart from work and sleep.

However. When I take a step back, I realise, on a whole I am happy, and even though what I do is boring compared to some other people, I still have fun and I have a wholesome life.

I have a wonderful boyfriend who loves me and we are going to be renting our first place together, which is extremely exciting!

When I want to I really do have fun! Recently, I went camping in the Lake District which was beautiful and a good laugh. Something I’ve never done before.

I have a family home in Yorkshire, in a tiny village in the countryside. And I love going back home for visits.

I have also been almost adopted into a family in Manchester too. I live with my boyfriend’s parents and they are the most supportive, lovely, accepting people. I will always be grateful for everything they have done for me. I have the best of both worlds. My crazy family back in Yorkshire and the beautiful countryside, and living in Manchester with my boyfriend’s parents (soon to be in our own place!) with the hustle and bustle of a city.

I have started to make new friends at work too and feel a lot more comfortable with what I do… oh and there is a cute office dog too!

I am a young person who has responsibilities, and I like that.

And I do want to change the hobbies situation! I want to start blogging again! I want to practice yoga…. Exactly that, PRACTICE. With practice in anything we all get better.

So I think the message of this post, is to stop thinking about what everyone else is doing, and appreciate everything you do have and appreciate it when you do have fun! You don’t have to spend a crazy amount of money and go out every night to have ‘fun’.

See you all soon with a new post ;)

Saturday, 11 June 2016

How to do a strand test

I've been blonding up my hair for around 2 years now. Before then I had never touched a hair dye. I've only also ever ombred my hair too, and only ever used one type of hair dye... so when I wanted to retouch up my ombre and couldn't find my trusted hair dye... I had to settle for another.

So, as I've never tried this dye before I was very reluctant to just spread it on my hair and hope for the best. I decided to do a strand test to try out the colour first and make sure it didn't turn it completely the wrong colour.

STEP 1: Take a piece of hair from the underside of your head, which will be darkest and less hard to see if it goes wrong.

STEP 2: Move all the rest of your hair out of the way by clipping it up or tying it up.

STEP 3: Mix your dye – take a plastic spoon and mix 1 spoonful of colour to 1.5 spoonfuls of developer. Make sure to screw the caps back on the bottles securely so it doesn't leak!

SETP 4: Apply to the strand of hair you sectioned earlier. Make sure you cover all the strand so that you can see the result clearly.

STEP 5: Leave to develop for the length of time which your instructions say.

STEP 6: Rinse the strand and let air dry.

From this process you should be able to see the colour which the dye will turn your hair. Obviously this might change over your full head as you do have darker hair under your head rather than on the top. For me, I found the strand test definitely showed the hair would be lighter but I didn't notice a massive difference. This made me confident enough to go ahead and use it, and I loved the results! I will do a full review on this hair dye soon!

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Rodial Review

Recently (I say recently... but 'recently' I've lost track of time and been in a bit of a time warp... so I really mean a few weeks (month?) ago.) I was lucky enough to win a Rodial beauty giveaway. Before this giveaway I hadn't really heard of Rodial... but upon research I found out that it is a luxury high-end brand so I was so excited to receive this as I don't own many high-end products.

What did I receive? What were my thoughts?!

This is described as a 'tinted lip butter with hydraulic acid spheres'...whatever that means...It is enriched with cocoa butter and Vitamin E for a moisture rich butter. The packaging for this lip butter is so luxury, and the smell is pleasant cocoa butter. But unfortunately, that's all I like about this product...I found the butter sat in the cracks in my lips and looked, well, cheap! The only way I can get this butter to look ok on my lips, is over a lipstick. Worth £24? Not in my books.

I actually really like this blusher! Again, the packaging is so sophisticated. The mini compact comes with a little mirror inside, which makes it great for keeping in your handbag. The colour pay off is amazing, only needing a little bit of the powder on your brush before applying. 10/10!

If you read the back of the box for this mask, it is literally a list of the most confusing ingredients I have ever heard of...the only sentence I can vaguely get my head around is 'triple action resurfacing clay mask with hexapeptide, glycolic and fruit acid and pro-biotic technology.' The mask boasts purifying the skin and minimising the appearance of fine lines. The smell of this mask is really fruity, which I like. Overall, I like using this mask, but I think it's mainly because I like using masks full stop, not because I think it performs miracles on my skin...

I really enjoy using these eye masks! They're so fun! These de-puffing bio-cellulose eye masks hydrate and tone the delicate skin around the eyes, making you feel fresh and awake. The product is full of a gel-like substance, which after 30 minutes of leaving the masks under your eyes, your skin has just sucked everything up. These are my favourite out of everything I received.

Overall, I do enjoy using these products and I'm over the moon I won the giveaway! However, I don't think I would buy any of these products... Sure, I like using them! But they are extremely expensive, and I think there are other products, which are cheaper that do the same thing which are more affordable for someone like me.

Friday, 6 May 2016

Nivea Post Shave Balm

As a make-up primer?!

No doubt if you follow beauty Youtubers/bloggers you will have heard about using the Nivea Post-Shave Balm as a make-up primer. This originated from the amazing NikkieTutorials (you MUST go check her out!) when she noticed how her make-up lasted all day after using it under her make-up. Multiple bloggers have raved about the product since, enticing me to give it a try!

Sooo obviously I went and bought myself a bottle. First reaction, I LOVE this smell. Yes, it smells manly. But it's not overpowering and if you like the smell of men's deodorant etc then you will like the smell of this. It doesn't make you smell of man... but it has a subtle man smell to it when you apply it to your face mmm.

I have used this a few times, using a little bit of product under my make-up and seeing how it performs throughout the day. My thoughts? It doesn't work as a face primer... after wearing my make-up for a full day, I found that my face was MORE oily and shiny in my T-zone area. This is not the result I wanted! Most reviews I had read said that the product made their foundation last all day with no need to powder throughout the day. This was NOT the case for me. I tried it multiple times; some days where I would be walking for 40 minutes and some days where I was just sat in front of the TV all day... and still the same result.

I'm not disappointed that I've bought the product, as mentioned before it does smell nice, and I will use the product as a moisturiser. You also get LOTS of product in the bottle. But unfortunately for me this product does not work as a foundation primer :(

Has anyone else used this product as a make-up primer? What were your thoughts?

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Creightons Sunshine Blonde Range

Recently, I ventured into Savers to buy a new shampoo and conditioner. I spotted the John Frieda Sheer blonde range, which is a bit more pricey than shampoos I usually like to buy, and decided I was going to treat myself and buy it... until I saw the Creightons Sunshine Blonde products. This caught my eye due to its packaging, which is strikingly like the John Frieda range. However, these were £1 each which is considerably lower than the John Frieda products... can't argue with that! So, I thought for £1 each it's definitely worth a try. At this point I had only purchased the Sunshine Blonde shampoo and conditioner. I then went to Poundland and spotted a purple shampoo from the same range for a quid, and got that too!

What are the products like? I find that they smell really good, and do their job just fine. The only problem I found is that when in the shower using the shampoo, after washing it out my hair feels a bit dry, but then this is rectified when conditioner is applied, so it's not really a problem. My hair is silky smooth and shiny when it's dry. What more could you ask for?! As for the purple shampoo, it definitely removes brassiness from the hair and brightens. However, I feel it doesn't make as big a difference as my all time favourite, Touch of Silver Brightening Shampoo, which is a little more money. This is what I found with the John Frieda toning shampoo too, which I tried a while ago. I would recommend using the Touch of Silver shampoo at least once a week for that ultimate brighten, but the Creightons one in-between will work fine to just brighten the colour slightly. Creightons do a purple conditioner too, but I haven't managed to purchase that one yet.

One other Creightons product I can't get enough of is the Vanilla & Macadamia Cocoon Bath & Shower. I've picked this up from both Lidl and Savers and got through it so quickly, it smells like vanilla cupcakes.

So, where can you buy Creightons products from? They do have an online site where you can purchase the products see HERE, however, I find that the products are slightly cheaper when found on the high-street. I've been keeping my eye out of where to find these products and I've seen Creightons in Savers, Poundland, Lidl and Quality Save. So, if you have a discount store near you it might be worth checking for these products, they are totally worth it! Creightons products are all made in England, are extremely affordable, smell great AND do their job! 

What are you waiting for!?

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Brazilian Brigadeiro

These Brazilian truffle like balls are super easy to make and delicious. If you like sickly chocolate goo like me then this is right up your street!

And there you have it!

The knack with this recipe is to allow the mixture to thicken properly before putting it on the plate. I didn't do this the first time I made them, and as you can see they just collapsed...

First attempt fail...

However, I made them again and thickened the mix, and they went perfect.

You can dip the chocolate balls in other things too, like a dusting of cocoa powder, desiccated coconut or chocolate chips.


Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Cyprus Diaries: Days 2 & 3

Previous Cyprus Diaries...

MONDAY 21st March - We used this as a chill day to explore the hotel and the surrounding area. And of course soak up some sun.

This night we were gifted a complimentary 5 course meal from the hotel, which was again, a lovely surprise. Drinks were also complimentary so we gorged ourselves on amazing food and unlimited wine and champagne!

TUESDAY 22nd March - This was our first excursion of the holiday; 'Discover the West'. This was also the worst weather we experienced on the holiday, with heavy rain throughout the day and it was VERY windy. However, we were quite lucky, in that whenever we were on the coach, that is when it rained, rather than on us...

Our first stop was the Temple of Apollo. Situated in the ancient area of Kourion, the site dates back to as early as 8th Century BC which is fascinating. I think it's amazing that we can visit these sites and see places that were used so many years ago by a civilisation much different to our own. Here we saw part of the Temple of Apollo, ruins of Roman baths and various other ruins.

Next we visited the Tombs of the Kings. These tombs, which date back to 4th Century BC, were thought at first to be tombs of Kings. However, they later discovered that these tombs were not for Kings, but for wealthy residents and aristocrats, but the name stuck.

Then we visited the House of Dionysos, the ruins of a Roman villa. This villa is home to some incredible mosaics which date back to the 2nd Century AD. They each told a story, and our tour guide gave us an overview of each mosaic.

After this, we were given free roam around Paphos harbor to get some lunch.

Paphos Castle

To finish the day we ended at the village of Yeroskipos, to look at the first factory where Cyprus delight (loukoumia) was made. 

Stay tuned for Days 3 & 4! :)

Friday, 8 April 2016

Primark Contour Palette

PS... Contour Kit Review

'Primark Beauty..?' I hear you ask... yup. Primark have their own beauty range, and in fact it's been around for quite a while. However, not many people are aware of it. Or they are, and like me, just assumed it would be rubbish because of how cheap it is. A couple of years ago I bought some nail polish from the Primark range and was impressed so, when I was browsing the other day I picked up this palette and thought I'd give it a try.

For a measly £4 you get three shades; contour, bronze and highlight. The packaging is a cute, small compact with a decent sized mirror. It also came with a 'free' contour brush which I immediately threw away as that was rubbish...BUT the product is pretty damn pleasing!

The contour shade is a lovely taupe which isn't too warm or too brown for a contour, which creates a subtle shadow where you want. The bronze is a bit darker and perfect for warming up the skin, and the highlight is a banana shade which subtly lightens. PERFECT.

Here are some pictures of me using this product, particularly to define my cheekbones (which are non-existent...):

Next time you think cheap = rubbish... think again! :) It's not always the case. 
Thanks Primark beauty!