Hermes Eau des Merveilles Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 6 - 2013

Hermes Eau de Merveilles is a bottle filled with sunshine.  Not the kind of sunshine that you’d need a bikini, the latest Lindsey Kelk book, and a Flake 99 to make the most of but the kind of sunshine that comes out after the rain, refreshing your senses and reminding you that there’s more to life than drizzle.  It won’t warm you, stifle you, or make you feel inappropriately dressed in your new Autumnal knits because there’s a briskness to it that fits perfectly with the falling of the leaves.

Although the fragrance has been around a number of years now, the luxury brand have – just a couple of days ago – released this limited-edition bottle version…

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Water of Wonders as it translates into English, is marketed as a feminine fragrance but to my nose, it’s perfectly unisex.  Infact, I think it would take a woman who really appreciates a masculine scent to fall in love with this one.  Beginning with a blast of orange zest (no juice in sight), it’s invigorating and fresh… oceanic even.

Picture yourself stood in a Mediterranean orange grove, a couple of miles inland from the sea with the wind whipping around you, carrying the kind of saltiness that catches you by surprise each time you absent-mindedly lick your lips.  You can smell, taste, and hear the ocean… but you can’t see it.

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An off-centre bottle for an off-centre perfume, this is probably one of the most skin-loving scents I’ve ever worn.  It’s sheer but resolutely there and rather than blend in with your own chemistry, it takes charge… mutating your own “smell” to suit its subtle agenda.  Once it feels it’s achieved this pitch-perfect takeover… it clings.  And then it clings some more, wearing close to the skin and giving gentle but reassuring hints as to its presence.  Beautifully dry, a wee bit mossy, it feels like an uncomplicated absolute.  It just is, it just exists…

Perhaps you don’t want to smell floral, perhaps you don’t want to smell juicy… instead, you want to smell lightly spiced…. a little outdoorsy without the heaviness of a typical woody fragrance.  Salty and fresh, clean and unsullied.  In that case, Hermes Eau des Merveilles has you covered.

The Limited Edition Eau des Merveilles is now available at selected department stores Nationwide, priced from £65.50 for 50ml.

* press sample


Headline Colors Poolside Party NOTD

Posted by Lipglossiping On August - 16 - 2013

If you’re starting to feel some early Autumnal blues creeping in (where did the Summer go?), you’re not alone.  I’m already hyperventilating at the thought of losing my beautiful long evenings… aren’t they just the best thing about summer?  I love being able to take blog photos at eight in the evening, sit on the balcony after Leila has gone to bed, and enjoy the thought that, at lunchtime, I have more than three-hours of light left in my day.

Winter, you suck.

Well… let’s push those gloomy thoughts to the back of our minds and concentrate instead on this rather cheerful hue.

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Headline Colors (used to be Killer Colors – remember the name dramas?) released this beautiful shade as part of their Spring/Summer 13 collection.  Poolside Party is a crystal clear blue with excellent opacity and a smooth formula that will bring a smile to your face in just two coats.

It’s simply cheerful.  Would look fabulous on toes (while you’re still brave enough to bare them) and makes me wish that Summer could go on forever.

Headline Colors Poolside Party is priced at £9 and is available to buy online from headlinecolors.com

* press sample

Inexpensive Beauty Find: H&M Wintersky Nail Polish

Posted by Lipglossiping On August - 12 - 2013

Loves me a good duochrome I do!

The problem with some duochromes is that no matter how delightfully galactic they look in the bottle, once on the nail… they require about a billion coats before reaching full opacity.  I mean, I know that I’ll have some extra time on my hands once Leila starts school in September (oh God, I’m not ready) but, five fucking coats is pushing it somewhat, no?

And that my friends, is why you need this H&M cheapie in your lives…

H&M Wintersky

H&M Wintersky

H&M Wintersky is a swoon-worthy polish.  It looks like it’s majorly accentuating my nail ridges in the second photo… but it’s quite an unkind photo to this poor polish which applies beautifully in just. two. coats.  The brush has a tendency to overload so you do have to be careful to scrape the excess back into the bottle but the formula is one of the fastest-drying (without making any application sacrifices) that I’ve yet to encounter.  Fastest-drying yet.  It’s like pixie-pee or something.

You should be able to tell from the photos that the duochrome shifts from a silvery green/blue to pink/lilac gorgeousness.  I’m also not wearing a top-coat in these shots because I was having a major swatch-session.

H&M Wintersky is currently available in H&M stores… it’s also online (if you can navigate their abomination of a website).  Priced at £2.99, it’s worth picking up next time you’re instore.

July Product Loves (vol. 533493492)

Posted by Lipglossiping On July - 12 - 2012

Or is it vol. 533493491?  With over 2250 posts under my belt, you can appreciate that I’ve loved and fell out of love with all manner of things, such is the fickle nature of beauty and such is the fickle nature of “ooh shiny”.  I’m always reticent to admit to Holy Grail products because I’m not really the kind of person to stick to one thing for life (except perhaps for Mr. L and Boost bars).  If I repurchase something, that’s pretty damn good going when there’s all manner of other lovely things that promise the earth and deliver about 2 continents worth instead.  As beauty lovers, we’ve grown to expect a certain amount of over-selling when it comes to product claims and I guess that’s why blogs are so useful, they simply provide the experiences of peers who generally have the same expectation levels as yourself.

With that in mind, these are the things that I’ve been currently loving long time.  Well, about two weeks – which, in the coquettish world of beauty, is literally, forever.

1). Calling all mermaids!  VOYA Ritzy Spritzy* hails from the salty depths, quite literally!  The hero ingredient to this refreshing toner is hand-harvested seaweed, packed with vitamins B1, B2 and B12 (sounds like Bananas in Pyjamas), plus polysaccharides and alginates, all of which combine to offer a tonic that delivers a moisturising, oil-free formula.  I’m an toner-nut and after using it continuously for a week in-place of my usual variety, this one is particularly efficient in cooling the skin, making it a great holiday choice for those jetting off to far-flung beaches. £23.00 from Look Fantastic.

2). Hello Glow! Hello indeed to this budget-friendly alternative to a particularly well-known Dermalogica favourite!  If you’re a Daily Microfoliant addict, you might want to give Hello Glow‘s Whitening Plus Facial Polish* a spin.  Released just last month, the powder formulation mixes with a little water to create a mildly exfoliating paste that leaves my skin feeling incredibly soft.  It contains a 100% natural blend of coconut milk powder, potato starch, milk, honey, rice and essential oils and is suitcase friendly too! £9.99 from RoseLinkUK.

3). It wouldn’t be Summer without a fresh, summer fragrance to distract myself from the necessity to build a replica Ark and Prada’s Infusion d’Iris offers maximum distraction.  A classic, green scent which despite the name offers a more sensual, woody edge than I’d expect.  The floral is clearly there, along with a burst of Italian-inspired citrus zings that never smell too sharp but it’s the drydrown that leaves my mouth watering in it’s pure cleanliness that leaves me feeling like I’ve just stepped from the shower (minus the cheap soap!).  A perfect balance of floral, fresh and woody that simply works very nicely on my skin.  From £40.00 at Debenhams.

4). From one classic to another, in the form of Trilogy’s Certified Organic Rosehip Oil, which I purchased as a little moisture-booster to my current skincare routine.  I use it while my skin is still wet from the shower (water really makes my skin feel tight), and massage it in to my elbows, knees, heels and any little eczema patches that have flared up overnight – what’s left on my hands after this, goes straight on my face.  In the winter, I may use it more often but a couple of times a week at the moment is enough to keep my skin supple and happy. £16.50 from Boots.

5).  Another one for the holiday bag is Laqa & Co’s Nail Pen in Incestuous*.  Hate the name, love the colour!  This muted lavender nail pen is one of those products that you think will never work.  Nail polish in a pen?!  But work it does… though I discovered that painting with your “wrong” hand is significantly more tricky than when using a regular polish brush – it’s just like writing or drawing with your weak hand!  The polish dispenses easily and is fluid enough to work with without too much fuss.  5ml for £11 makes it an expensive option, but it’s great for travel and is a real conversation starter as I discovered on the train the other day! £11 from PowderRooms.

6). There’s lots of classics on my list today and Olay’s Classic Care Nourishing Beauty Fluid (Sensitive) is perhaps the consummate defintion of the word.  My day moisturiser recently ran out, and being on a no-buy meant that I had more chance of a sunny day than guiltessly hot-footing it to the Elemis counter, so I settled for Asda instead and picked up this one to tide me over.  I actually meant to pick up this one but couldn’t find it on the shelves.  That being said, it’s doing a sterling job at leaving my skin feeling hydrated with a non-greasy finish.  I’m not sure I’ll repurchase, because I’ll hopefully be off my no-buy when this one runs out and I’ll try and pick up the one I meant to get next time.  Still, £4.69 from Boots – mustn’t grumble!

7). Can you tell I’m not going on holiday until September?  My goodness am I packing in these travel essentials this month!  The St. Tropez Bronzing Gel* is a great option for pasty legs that demand a streak-free finish!  Creams are all well and good but this dark gel will ensure you leave no patches un-tanned!  Combine it with an applicator mitt and really work the formula into your skin to ensure an even tan.  I like the gel formula because it looks a bit scarier, thus making me less complacent with my application – it’s all in the mind folks and this one just makes me work harder (in a good way!). £21.99 from Boots.

8). Last but by no means least!  Benadryl Allerfy Relief (Acrivastine) keeps both myself and Mr. L free from hayfever.  I’m fortunate to only suffer from mild symptoms but when the pollen count reaches the top of the charts, I reach for one of these and it knocks all symptoms on the head within half an hour.  I do sometimes have to take another tablet later in the day and they’re not the cheapest (I don’t think you can get generic versions) but they’re the best I’ve found for controlling the summer sniffles!  £3.80 from Tesco.

What are you loving so far this month?

* press sample

Heal Gel, the closest I’ve come to “miracle in a jar” beauty

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 19 - 2012

Heal Gel.  The most visually uninspiring product to land on my desk, ever.  Except – perhaps more than most – as beauty lovers, we should understand that looks can be deceiving, and if my instincts on a product’s efficacy serve me well, this unassuming little jar contains something not unlike a miracle.  Yeah, you heard me.  I don’t mince my words when it comes to my reviews, but you’ll rarely hear me call something out as a skin saviour.

Boring isn’t it?  But when compared to some of the flash self-proclaimed “miracle” creams on the market, this one actually appears to have some potency.

I put a shout out on Twitter to ask for recommendations on products that might help to improve the appearance of my daughter’s scar.  She picked the scab that had healed over a scratch back in February and it had, in return, left her with a slightly red dent on her cheek.  It wasn’t the most noticeable thing in the world, but on her completely flawless canvas – it was a shame.  Thankfully, over time and with generous moisturising with calendula cream – the colour in the scab calmed and returned to match her skin-colouring, the dent however, remained.

I genuinely didn’t think that there would be any topical product that would help this situation, I mean… if there really were something that could ‘plump’ the skin up enough to fill a dent (and do it permanently), that stuff would already be holy grail for every single woman on the planet (and probably cost a bajillion pounds) right?  The good people on Twitter suggested lots of things and home remedies that I’d already tried – the most popular being Bio Oil, something that I’ve used in the past and didn’t personally feel achieved much compared to how lauded it is in the beauty community.

The PR for Heal Gel* asked if I wanted to try a sample of the product which is used to treat post-operative scarring, keloid scars, blemishes and aged scar tissue.  My interest was piqued, on paper – it fits the bill but I was unsure, because it’s one thing testing products out on myself but I don’t feel comfortable trying samples on my daughter.  I googled to find out more about Heal Gel and had a DM from a fellow blogger with much more skincare nouse than me who had seen the tweet and suggested that it might actually work.

Well, it worked.  I think.

I applied a tiny amount directly to the dent, three times a day and within 3 weeks of application, I started to notice that when my daughter turned her head, the light that reflected in the dent was looking more shallow than it had previously.  It’s really hard to quantify a change that, to be quite honest, is minimal.  I have to trust my instincts somewhat that it’s not a placebo effect but both myself and my husband agree that overall, the scarring is looking flatter and can only really be noticed now when she angles her head into the light.

I feel that perhaps this is something that would have happened in good time.  She’s young, has plenty of collagen and good skin elasticity but I also believe that my use of Heal Gel accelerated the natural healing process.  I commented on Twitter that I thought I was seeing good results… but I wasn’t entirely sure about writing a post extolling it’s virtues – I didn’t want anyone to go rushing out to spend their pennies on this stuff based on my reccomendations without something just a little more tangible.  I started to use Heal Gel on my own aged surgery scars, and crossed my fingers.

That was only a week ago, not enough time to notice any difference in the slightest.

So why am I writing my review now?  Well, I got sunburned on Sunday morning, walking around the car-boot sale.  I’d SPF’ed my face to the max and completely ignored my chest, clever no?  Combined with a stiff breeze I really didn’t feel the effects until I sat back in the car and felt the tell-tale stinging sensation that tells me I’ve over-done it.  Bugger.  Until I remembered the Heal Gel sat in my desk at home and I formulated a cunning plan!
I would treat one half of my *cough* burnt bosom *cough* with my usual aftersun solution of Aloe Vera gel and the other, with the Heal Gel.  Within 24 hours, I’d found a good enough reason to trust my initial instincts.  Look!

I’m half proud of my ingenuity at trying to deliver some tangible results with the product, and half mortified that I’ve basically flashed my boobs in my leopard-print cami (don’t try and pretend you didn’t notice the cami) on the fucking internet.  Go me!

I’ll leave you with this thought…  If it takes five leading British plastic and cosmetic surgeons only three years to perfect the formula for Heal Gel.  Why is it taking me longer than thirty years to remember to sun-protect my chest in the first place?  Shameful.

Heal Gel is priced at £33.50 for 30ml and can be purchased online from Victoria Health and Cult Beauty.  It’s also available instore at Liberty.

* press sample

** for an ingredient list and more scientific information than I’m able to provide, click through to either Victoria Health or Cult Beauty for more information, the Heal Gel website is a little sparse at the moment!

Eye Candy: Helena Rubinstein Loose Eye Shadow in Plum Rock

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 6 - 2012

Urgh, I wish we could get Helena Rubinstein stuffs in the UK.  I’m holding out for when I hit up Prague in the Autumn.  I spotted this loose eye shadow and couldn’t resist a dabble with the discounters, it’s probably about 7 years old or something – I’m not thinking about it.  Just look at the pretty.

The bronzy-plum blend flatters my eye-colouring and the metallic sheen isn’t too much on my eyelids, it’s a beautiful shade that really needs primer to make it stick.  The first time I wore it (without priming), it slid off within the hour!  I like the decanting method with the teeny hole, I just tap a tiny bit into the lid and it seems to make far less mess than when I try to just touch the brush to the powder a la MAC pigments.

I bought this from Direct Cosmetics, priced at £6.99

Curious about Helena Rubinstein?

Hourglass Cosmetics: A very special personal appearance!

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 19 - 2011

Hourglass Cosmetics will be holding a special event at their Liberty counter this Saturday, 22nd October.  Gina Brookes, the brand’s Artistic Director will be flying in from the U.S. to hold her first UK personal appearance.

The highly respected makeup artist, known for her work with Madonna and Gwen Stefani will be giving expert insight, offering tips and demonstrating applications on a 1-2-1 basis for lucky attendees!

Appointments will be held between 3-6pm and issued on a first come first served basis.  To book, call 020 7730 1234 ext 2632.

Game, Scent and MATCH!

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 20 - 2011

To honour the opening of one of the world’s greatest Tennis Grand Slam Tournaments, I’m dedicating this afternoon’s post to Wimbledon!

Tickets for The Championships are notoriously tricky to come by coupled with the fact that we’re more likely to see Murray win in straight sets than make it there in time to nab a decent spot on Henman Hill.

So let’s bring the atmosphere of Wimbledon to us with a few fragrances to get you in the mood for your centre court appearance!

1. Hermès Un Jardin Sur Le Toit EDT 100ml – £77.00

This elegant bottle from Paris fashion house Hermès is the 4th fragrance from their garden-inspired series.  Literally translating to “A garden on the roof”, it pays homage to the roof-garden situated atop the Hermès’ HQ building in Paris!  One of the more instantly familiar notes within the jus is the freshly cut green grass synonymous with Wimbledon as one of the few remaining great grass courts!

Hermès Un Jardin Sur Le Toit is available to buy online from uk.hermes.com

2. Eau de Lacoste Blanc EDT 100ml – £39.99 *

Pre-match nerves abound and the air crackles with tension as tight as strings on rackets!  If you could only snoop backstage to taste the atmosphere you’d get more than a hint of the cool, fresh notes waiting within this offering by Lacoste.  Simply titled ‘Blanc’ it evokes the spirit of the iconic L.12.12 polo shirt which translated to girl-speak means that lush, clean… crisp scent you’d get from nuzzling your nose in Federer’s freshly-ironed match-whites with just a hint of the iconic champion left behind.

Eau de Lacoste Blanc EDT 100ml is available to buy online from www.theperfumeshop.com

3. DIOR Miss Dior Chérie EDP 50ml – £59.50 *

It wouldn’t be Wimbledon with the event’s signature snack of strawberries and cream!  Like the sun with no moon, sausages sans mash… it just wouldn’t be the same without it.  Dior’s Miss Dior Chérie has some serious strawberry credentials that strike like a punnet of Kent’s finest with a backhand of caramelized sugar.  If anything can help remind the on-court grunters that they are indeed laydees, this would be the flirty scent for the job.  It’s unashamedly girly, fruity and pink!

DIOR Miss Dior Chérie Eau de Parfum is available to buy online from www.theperfumeshop.com

4. La Prairie Midnight Rain EDP 50ml – £74.00

I don’t need to tell you what this one reminds me of?  Clue: it’s not Cliff Richard.  La Prairie Midnight Rain is another fruity floral but with some serious “ooh la la” leanings.  While Miss Dior Cherie will render you the juiciest filly in the stand, Midnight Rain will have you tearing up the turf at the after party!  Opening with some tropical top notes the fragrance dries down to a sensuous musky finish, it’s not a sexydirty scent but it’s not alltogether innocent either.  One thing’s for sure… it wouldn’t let rain stop play!

La Prairie Midnight Rain is available to buy online from www.escentual.com

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Who’s gonna win the men’s final this year and what fragrance are you wearing today?

* press sample

Hands up if you want soft mitts for Summer?

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 11 - 2011

We don’t like it but we can at last be excused a bit of roughness in the Winter as the harsh weather takes its toll on our poor extremities.  Our hands are usually the first to succumb to the Gods of dry skin and those rough bits that catch on your sleeves *ouch!*

In the Summer though, there really is no excuses for general skin dryness… so give yourself a helping hand and check out some of the hand creams below for a sure-fire way to get some silky softness back in your life!

Woods of Windsor True Rose Conditioning Hand and Nail Cream 125ml (£7.75)*

A lighter option for those who dislike the heavy feeling of cream on their hands.  This Woods of Windsor lotion absorbs quickly and efficiently whilst leaving behind a delicate rose scent.  I recommend keeping this one nearby though as you’ll need to top up regularly to ensure long-lasting softness.

Bliss High Intensity Hand Cream 75ml (£18.40)

I picked this up in Debenhams a little while ago and true to its name, the Bliss High Intensity Hand Cream delivers a welcome boost of moisturisation which means I can apply at night before bed and wake up in the morning with noticeably smoother digits.  A good choice to stash in the bedside table but perhaps not for you if you dislike the feeling of a rich cream on your hands.

Liz Earle Hand Repair 150ml (£19.65)*

If greasy residues are your main concern, the Liz Earle Hand Repair is the product you need!  The larger sizes come with a convenient pump dispenser which releases a rich, awesome smelling (as you’d expect) hand cream.  It absorbs with blistering speed, leaving my hands feeling silky to the touch.  Not as heavy duty in the moisturisation department as some, I’d recommend this for those with normal/dry skin concerns.

All for Eve Hand Cream 100ml (£7.50)

My top pick for Summer hand creams is the All for Eve offering I bought last month.  I keep this at my computer and would recommend this as the perfect every day hand cream.  It smells delicious, leans toward a lighter, more easily absorbed formula and at under £8 for a generous 100ml, it’s a bargain!  And don’t forget that all proceeds from ‘all for eve’ products go towards ‘The Eve Appeal’ fund.

Heathcote & Ivory Vintage Mimosa Mini Hand Creams 30ml (£4.00 for 3)*

Super cute mini hand cream that’s perfectly sized for some handbag toteing!  This Heathcote & Ivory Vintage Hand Cream is surprisingly potent for the money.  Again, more suited to normal/dry skin than those in need of severe replenishment, I particularly love the Shea Butter based formula which spreads itself thinly without taking all day to sink in!

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If you’re in particular need for something a little more intense, you might also be interested in taking a look at my review of the Lanolips Rose Balm Intense.

Are you getting your skin in shape for Summer?  What are your favourite hand creams at the moment?

* Denotes PR Sample

Halo Hair Extensions – The view from n00bville

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 14 - 2011

Although ‘officially’ past that awkward inbetween length, my hair still feels very much like it’s making me endure the teenage years.  Up until 18 months ago, I’d had long hair my entire adult life… but along came a baby and with her; dribble, snot, vomit and spitup – most of which used to end up coating my locks.

I’d like to say that I’ve loved having short hair, I know that in theory… a neat, slightly-angled bob has always suited my round face better than heavy curtains that hang down either side of my hamster cheeks… but theory is called theory because it’s the opposite of practice.

I simply haven’t had the patience, inclination or time to style my short hair and stop it from looking untamed.  I’ve spent the last 18 months with what amounts to a bad hair day.  My feelings on this were hugely reinforced on Saturday when I attached the human hair extensions that I was sent by Halo Hair Extensions.

I’m a total hair extension n00b and have never considered myself a hair extension kinda girl.  I opened the package… looked blankly at the strands of hair infront of me and quite honestly thought “what the hell did I go and agree to give my feedback on these for?”  Curiosity would be the honest answer to that question.

First things first, did they even match my hair?  I held them up alongside my mane and Mr. L answered in the affirmative.  Obviously, you don’t trust a man’s opinion on such important matters so I hot-footed it to the bathroom and checked for myself.   I was sent this set in darkest brown and it’s a damn decent match to the ends of my hair… no ombre here (apart from the overprocessing I’ve done to my self).

I spread the 8 piece set out on the bed infront of me, marvelling at how the softness put my own to shame and wondering if the coarseness of my rough locks would look odd in comparison to the pieces I was about to “install”.

The set I received contained: 2 pieces of hair which are 8” wide (with 3 clips), 2 pieces which are 6” wide (with 2 clips) and 4 pieces which are 2” wide (with 1 clip).

I started with the widest pieces at the back, parting my hair horizontally with a rat-tailed comb and clipping them to my own hair.  I’m rubbish at describing things like this, if you’re as clueless as I was, I suggest that you go and watch one of the how-to videos on their website for more insight and tips into how they actually attach.

Once in, they felt secure and I was able to brush through gently with my hairbrush to blend my hair with the extensions.  It frankly felt amazing to have such thick, luxurious feeling hair… what a confidence boost.  I admittedly spent the entire day asking my husband if he could see the clips (he didn’t once say yes) but perhaps that kind of confidence in wear will come with time.

Wanna see how they look?  Bear in mind that this was my very first attempt at putting them in and they literally took me 5 minutes from start to finish.  I’m so impressed with how ‘usable’ they are, I really thought I’d struggle and turn the air blue trying to get them in but I didn’t enconter a single problem.

Things I’d do differently next time…

I can see a ‘shelf’ at the back and I appreciate now that I should have included the other 3-clip piece that I left on the bed thinking that I ‘didn’t need it’.

I’d contemplate trimming them just a touch to get rid of any wispiness from the ends.

This is a real glowing review, I’m struggling to find fault with the product (and I always like to find at least a little fault!)… so I will have to be pernickity and state that I did have to spend a good 10 minutes ‘picking’ bits of fluff/tacky glue out of some of the wefts.

But that’s my only negative experience with these clip-in hair extensions from Halo Hair.  Even the £39 price tag is reasonable… you could pay that easily for a decent haircut round my way.  I wish I’d tried them sooner, I just didn’t realise how easy they would be to put in.

Do you wear hair extensions?  Any tricks or tips to share?

Haus of Gloi Parkin & Aduwa (amongst others!)

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 24 - 2010

My second (or is it third – who’s counting?) Haus of Gloi order arrived a couple of weeks ago and included the limited edition scent Parkin and Aduwa from the permanent line.

I think by now, it’s confirmed that I’m a lover of the gourmand, foodie smells – particularly from this brand.  They simply do them so well.

I picked up a full size Parkin Pumpkin Butter, a mini size Parkin Bubbling Scrub, a full size Aduwa Bubbling Scrub and mini sized Saft Ernte & Pumpkin Queen Pumpkin Butters.  I basically scraped up the last of the Halloween offerings with this order.  I also made a separate order that contained just the Pumpkin Queen Perfume Oil but I seem to have mislaid it :(

Anyway… back to this order…

I’ve already talked about Pumpkin Queen and I won’t spend long on Saft Ernte (seeing as it’s barely available on site anymore) but suffice to say that if you’re a fan of Pumpkin Queen, you’ll like Saft Ernte too…. it’s a slightly peachier, sweeter version of Pumpkin Queen.  It’s a teeny bit *too* sweet for me… but not by much.

Parkin is still extremely gourmand… albeit darker.  In the jar, it’s all about the gingerbread… but once on the skin, it has a bitterness that comes from the black treacle.  The scent doesn’t last quite as long on me as Pumpkin Queen does but the formula is just as rich, moisturising and moreish.

Aduwa is part of the permanent line; described as: Sweet, hot, creamed ginger over a thick benzoin, creamy coconut milk.

I’ve only smelt this in the jar as I’m still finishing up my mini size Samhain scrub… but first impressions tell me that Aduwa smells good enough to eat!  The coconut is strong and true… none of this synthetic sun tan lotion coconut scent.  It’s like sticking your snout in a bag of dessicated coconut.

The next thing to come through is the creaminess… I was expecting a hit of ginger but it’s lacking a little.  This is pure coconut mixed through creamy hot milk.  Delightful.

My addiction to all things Haus of Gloi is well and truly compounded.  My Yule Tide order came through a couple of days ago… but I’m not even allowing myself a sniff until I’ve made some head way into these items.  I’m sure that won’t be too hard a task for me to manage!

Have you ordered anything from Haus of Gloi yet?

Autumn… the year’s last, loveliest smile.

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 6 - 2010

If it weren’t for those pesky prematurely dark evenings… Autumn would be my favourite season by far.

The excitement at dragging our lovely knitwear out from storage, discovering warming new recipes for the slow cooker, 100 denier tights and nature’s most vibrant display of colour.  It all combines to fill me with that pre-Christmas thrill.

For me, Autumn is the season of scents… crushed leaves underfoot, cordite in the air and hearty stews on the stove.

Here’s my take on some of the nicest Autumn scents that money can buy.

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Ancienne Ambiance Scented Candle Collection – Romana (£28)

Brainchild of Adriana Carlucci, Ancienne Ambiance offer luxury goods inspired by Antiquity.   When you burn an Ancienne Ambiance candle, you’re burning more than just a beautifully blended scent.

Romana is like a portal to another age.  Described as: A powder-like scent with sensual & comforting effects..particularly good when desiring a calm ambience.

Comforting is exactly right… it’s soft and evocative.  The amber tones are rich, earthy and overwhelmingly Autumnal.  Perfect for warming up these dark evenings.

The quality in this candle is evident with a flame which burned evenly throughout the many hours of enjoyment I’ve had thus far.  The scent remains true and consistent from the first time you light it through to the moment it extinguishes itself.

The Ancienne Ambiance Scented Candle Collection is available to buy online and instore at Fenwick of Bond Street.

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OCCO  Motovun no3 Bath & Body Wash (£18)

Croatian-inspired OCCO are a new to the UK, natural brand with a wide range of luxury products.

The Motovun no3 range combines essences of Cypress Leaf, Labdanum, Oak, Cedar Leaf, Vetiver and Black Pepper, to create an earthy and woody selection.

They say:

Oil of cypress tree fuses with gentle oat-based cleansers with anti-oxidant properties, to help restore elasticity and cleanse your skin. Natural extracts of pine and oak calm and centre your mood.

With an impressive list of active ingredients including: Pine Oil, Cypress Oil and Sage Oil Grape Extract, OCCO’s Motovun No3 promises to be a moisturising experience.  Something that our skins definitely crave this time of year.

All OCCO products contain a minimum of 95% natural ingredients and 100% natural fragrance blended from absolutes, extracts and oils to reveal subtle top, heart and base notes. All products are free from parabens, sulphates, petrochemicals and synthetic colours.

The brand are set to open a central London boutique this Autumn but for now, you can purchase online and instore from Harrods and John Lewis.

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Haus of Gloi Parkin Bubbling Scrub ($9)

My latest Haus of Gloi order turned up yesterday morning and amongst it was the newly released Parkin Bubbling Scrub.

Heavy in black treacle, ginger and roasted chestnuts… the initial ginger sweetness morphs into a richer, darker base that lingers on the skin for hours.  Synonymous with Bonfire Night, I was delighted to scrub myself silly with this yesterday morning to mark the historic date.

Now, if only I had some real sticky Parkin to go with it *nom*

Parkin Bubbling Scrub is available online from Haus of Gloi (for a limited time).

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LUSH / Gorilla Perfumes – Tuca Tuca (from £2.50)

I wanted to include an out and out fragrance in this selection but I found myself struggling to choose.  Sure, there are many amber and woody offerings…. even heady orientals that would fit with the theme but as I was exploring my stash of lovely things, I remembered Tuca Tuca.

It’s a love it/hate it pick.  Mr. L hates it, I love it.  Not quite as much as I love some of LUSH’s other new fragrance offerings (I’m looking at you Lust and The Smell of Freedom) but by Jove it reminds me of Halloween!

Tuca Tuca is an explosion in a Parma Violet Factory… and in this house, Parma Violets are king… or yano… queen… whatever, I ain’t discriminating.  Even better if we can find the jumbo ones… am not fattist either.  It’s playful, girly and comforting all at the same time.  But most of all?  It’s impish… mischievous and defiantly bold.

A pied piper of fragrances.

Tuca Tuca is available instore at LUSH or online.

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Neals Yard Remedies Lip Gloss with Organic Orange Oil (£9)

Neals Yard Remedies are new to cosmetics and I’m finding it hard to decide if this is a gloss, a balm or maybe just a bit of both!

Advertised as a gloss, it does indeed leave a lovely (if subtle) sheen behind.  It’s non sticky and wears just as well under a lipstick as it does over it!

But the real beauty is in it’s scent!

I have literally spent an entire car journey with the end stuffed up my nostril.  Well, not *up* my nostril… that would just be dangerous, imagine if we had to brake?

Let me explain…

As a child, around this time of year… I used to make orange pomanders and use them to scent drawers and wardrobes around the house.  The organic orange oil is an acute reminder of those days.

It’s got enough tartness to it to steer it away from being sickly, but enough softness to stop it from smelling like a kitchen cleaner.  Fragrance blenders… I have so much respect for the delicate balancing act you do!

No parabens, no silicones and no carmine.  Neals Yard Remedies offers the first collection to include Soil Association certified cosmetics.  But I’m still all about that orange!

Neals Yard Remedies Lip Gloss with Organic Orange Oil is available to buy instore and online.

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What are some of your loveliest Autumnal scents?  And which season is your favourite?

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