Schools Out ’16 / WEEKS 2&3

posted in: KIDS | 0

IMG_0047Okay, I wasn’t quite so active this last fortnight so I thought I would combine the two weeks in one post. In my defence this was at least partly because Milo has had such an active social life recently and Ella was away with her Dad. Milo went to Butlins with his childminder (who offered to take him) and to his friends for a morning so I had tons of time last week to work.. this week has been considerably more difficult by comparison. We were away last weekend so I still have tons to catch up on but I’ve still managed to stick to working in the evenings rather than when I’m home with the kids during the day so that’s a win.

IMG_9370IMG_9393Milo and I did take a trip to Leeds last week for a meeting (where he sat on this giant L at the station and caught several Pokemon -HUGE Pokemon population in the centre) but that’s pretty much all we did. This week however I’d made a PLAN! I saw an ad for the ‘Gruffalo Experience’ at Meadowhall and booked us tickets for Monday. It was about £9 each and I honestly thought it would be terrible but I really felt like they padded it out to give you your moneys worth. It’s still steep for 45 minutes entertainment but it’s something I’d recommend if you’re in the area. There were kids of all ages there and the guy running our group got them all involved throughout, also by some sorcery they made the Gruffalo seem totally non-threatening.. Milo even went for a hug at the end. Put it this way, We have never had a picture with Santa turn out this well!

IMG_9388IMG_9374IMG_9391IMG_9384IMG_9392He spotted a playground that we never usually walk past as we were parked somewhere new and so we spent some time there before braving the summer shopping crowds. Didn’t last long but did come away with a pre-owned DS Game (Mario Kart) for Milo who’s just getting in to hand held stuff and a bargainous floor lamp from BHS (£30 down from £150) before we headed home.

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Yesterday we went to see Angry Birds at Kids AM.. if you are a parent and you have never heard of Kids AM you NEED to find a Vue (or I think Cineworld have their own version now) near you cause it’s the most cost effective way of taking the whole family to the cinema! It can be stupidly expensive, some tickets are more than a tenner each, that’s CRAZY!!! Kids AM is £1.99 per person and it shows films that have just finished playing. Milo really wanted to see Angry Birds but I suspected it would be terrible so this was one we were waiting on an AM ticket for, it actually wasn’t all THAT bad in the end but hey.. saved about £30 so I’m still glad we waited. They do it year round on weekends but every single day in the holidays!

I love this picture of Milo, it’s basically the behind the scenes of every ‘mummy blogger’ when the kid has had enough pictures taken and just wants to do their thing and be left alone.. the teenage vibes are coming from him at the moment rather than my daughter!

The Wonder Of Instant Length

posted in: HAIR | 6

IMG_0042In the past 18 months I’ve tried 3 methods of professionally applied hair extensions, after my last set of Great Lengths keratin bonds I thought I had found my match but there’s something more than a bit special about Lucinda Ellery hair. For those of you just joining us, a little background. My hair went through a bit of a melt down last year and started breaking off left right and centre after a bad bleaching appointment with my (now ex) hairdresser. It left me with an unsightly, uneven mullet and trawling the internet for solutions. I was ready to chop it all off when I was offered extensions to review. I was already at the ‘lost cause’ stage so I didn’t see the harm.. if they were damaging I could always chop it off as planned, after all. IMG_0024 2But my hair wasn’t damaged and now, 3 months after that last set were removed my hair feels great and I was more than a bit nervous to put it at risk. A little research however put my mind at ease, Lucinda Ellery salons are first and foremost hair loss management specialists, they are NOT in the business of damaging whatever hair you have left when you come in. I know that for me my hair can totally dictate how I feel about myself so to lose it would be very difficult but the work they do in this salon is absolutely unreal. I saw women come in for adjustments and touch ups who you would never know had any issue with hair loss thanks to the Intralace system – you can see some before/afters online here – seriously amazing!

IMG_0031What appealed to me about another set of extensions was 1. the length, it’s fun to have instantly long hair for someone who’s never had the patience to grow her own, 2. so long as they’re in I’m not tempted to colour/bleach my own hair.. which by the way has not been touched since JANUARY!! That’s a record for me, I’m certain! and 3. they hide my still uneven, quite mullety style I have going on while the shorter layers (breakage) grow out. I think I will likely have a couple of inches off when the extensions come out.. I never really study the back of my head but this picture is pretty shocking! I look like a Bee Gee!

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So here’s the big difference between Lucinda Ellery and other bonded extensions.. all of the hair is loose. This means they can not only choose the right thickness of each piece depending on what they think is suitable for your hair type, they can also create a totally custom colour for you which will make a huge difference to how well the extensions blend with your own hair. They also use a thicker section of your own hair to anchor each extension so there’s less chance of breakage. I’ve only had them in for 24 hours at this point but my first impressions are great, the bonds feel chunkier than my last set but I have a lot more hair and yet they don’t feel heavy at all. I will update with maintenance info as that was a huge plus for the Great Lengths, I found them really easy to look after and treated them just like my own hair so I’m keeping my fingers crossed I’ll feel the same way about these.

IMG_0034The bond is clear so adapts to your own hair colour which is a massive bonus and although you can see them they’re not obvious when I wear my hair up and they will only become less so as they grow out. On that note they are said to last 12-14 weeks with an 8 week check up at which time they can replace fallen extensions as well as check on the health of your own hair.

IMG_0044I’ve been swooshing around the house all day with my new long hair (un-noticed by the smallest child who said it ‘looked browner’) and I’m now settling in for an early night (it feels like it should be Friday, can’t it be Friday?) and a spot of Gossip Girl, I finally feel like I could give Blake Lively’s mane a run for it’s money.. almost

*service was provided to me for review

H&M Beauty

posted in: BEAUTY, VIDEOS | 0

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I placed a second H&M Beauty order a few weeks ago due to popular demand – watch the haul – for more reviews and I realised that I’d barely used the products I already had! I thought a full face ‘GRWM – Get Ready With Me’ would be a good place to start. I will be swatching more of the products for you in future posts but for now I’m sharing what I was most drawn to for todays video.

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Cover Up Concealer / Vanilla / £4.99

I wasn’t sold on this initially, felt very silicone-y and didn’t blend well but when I used it again without prepping my skin with moisturiser/primer it was TOTALLY different. More suitable for dry skin, I think.

True Matte Finishing Powder / Porcelain / £7.99

This is one of the few products I HAVE used consistently from my original haul, very fine pressed powder great for touching up on the go without looking cakey. One of my favourite finishing powders.

Brow Specialist / Espresso / £2.99

I’m very picky when it comes to brows but since my hair has been darker it’s far easier to find a colour match. The texture of this is creamy, definitely needs a light hand but not at all waxy, a fast favourite.

Eye Colour-To-Go / Whatipu Beach / £3.99

I bought this to be a quick eye base and it didn’t disappoint, super easy to scribble on the lid and blend out for a smudgy eye look or a base for something more intense like….

Colour Essence Eye Cream / Opening Night / £4.99

These cream mousse products are a real highlight of the range, not too expensive and really, really great. I’ve used the Dauphine Truffle shade SO much and this sparkly champagne is a great way to add glitter without the fear of fall out.

Colour Essence Eye Pencil / Terroir / £3.99

I can’t see this online anymore in this shade which is a shame because the deep brown makes an interesting alternative to standard black. These smudge out really nicely too for a smokey liner

Soft Kajal Eye Pencil / Pale Nude / £2.99

I bought this to brighten my waterline when wearing darker colours on my eyes and I really like it. Nice and soft, easy to apply without pushing too hard in a delicate area and a nice neutral shade for my skin tone

High & Mighty Mascara / Deep Black / £7.99

I’m not sure what the difference is between the different mascara’s from H&M but this one is gold and came in a box.. fancy! It’s got a very fine rubber wand and gives considerably more lift and separation than I had expected. A+

Pure Radiance Powder Blusher / Apricot / £6.99

I never reach for this colour because it looks so peachy in the pan but it’s got more depth to it than that. If you’re fair and like to contour with blush this adds warmth and colour without looking too orange

Lip Definer / Marsala / £3.99

I got a few of these and this one must have been on sale because it’s no longer online. It’s pretty much the lip equivalent of the blush, a deeper peachy shade than it first appears to be. These lip definers are SO creamy.. I’m glad I bought a few colours!

Lip Saviour Balm / Sepia / £4.99

I was expecting more colour from this but the tint is VERY sheer so it’s really just a glossy balm, a nice way to dress up a liner without topping it with lipstick but don’t expect much from it alone other than a standard balm

I was really happy with the products I tried this time around and vow to give the rest a proper shot before doing a follow up ‘best and worst’ of H&M Beauty. Last year when I picked up my first bits and pieces from the line I was so struck by the flimsy packaging for the not so low price point that I think I let that cloud my judgement a little.. I never really gave the products a chance to wow me but after this I will be trying more and persevering with those that didn’t initially impress me. 

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