Friday 30 November 2018

Super Sonic Cleansing for Fabulous Looking Skin

Cleansing brushes have been a big hit with skincare lovers, young and old for quite a number of years. I've used a few different brands in the past but the one I always reach for is by Magnitone. My first cleansing brush was the Magnitone Lucid Cleansing Brush and it has served me well but I was definitely due an upgrade and the cleansing brush gods clearly heard my plea because I had a shiny new brush land in my hands recently. The brand new Magnitone Barefaced 2 Cleansing & Toning Brush (£90.00) is the cleansing brush to beat all cleansing brushes and my skin can definitely vouch for that. 

Wednesday 28 November 2018

Too Faced Gingerbread Spice Palette

At the beginning of 2018, I made a vow that I would try more products from Too Faced, it was a brand I'd always wanted to try but hadn't and so when Arran bought the Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette for my birthday, it seemed like the perfect time to do just what I'd said. 

I now own five Too Faced palettes and really love the formula of the eye shadows so when they launched the Gingerbread Spice palette as part of their holiday collection, I needed to get my hands on it but that seemed more difficult than first thought because it was sold out everywhere online.

Monday 26 November 2018

Christmas at Beaulieu

I'm really excited for Christmas this year, mainly because Joshua is much more aware of what is going on so when I was invited to Beaulieu's very first Christmas at Beaulieu event I couldn't resist. My parents and I took Joshua for an evening full of warmed mince pies and hot chocolate and the most magical illuminated Christmas trail around the grounds of Beaulieu and left brimming over with festive joy. 

The illuminated trail is taking place from now until 24th December on selected evenings so be sure to book your tickets to guarantee your slot. 

Sunday 25 November 2018

L'Occitane Luxury Beauty Advent Calendar

It's that time of year again already and for the second year running, I have my hands on a L'Occitane Advent Calendar full of skin loving treats. It's one I've been looking forward to and it doesn't disappoint, especially if you're a skincare fan like me. I find advent calendars are a great way to discover a new brand and get to try their products before committing to something full size. From hand creams, face cleansers and soaps to their much loved oils and perfumes, it's a fab treat to open each day in the lead up to Christmas. 

Friday 23 November 2018

Get Ready for Christmas at JoJo Maman Bébé

The Christmas countdown is on and I've been making lists, checking them twice and making sure we have everything we could possibly want to celebrate Christmas this year. Joshua was only two months old last year so we kept it pretty low key but this year is going to be completely different and we're so excited. I've been collecting presents for under the tree and little bits to make him a Christmas Eve Box and I've been relying heavily on my favourite baby shop, JoJo Maman Bébé. 

I loved their maternity wear and we bought some rather special baby grows for when Joshua was first born so it's a brand we go back to again and again. The quality is outstanding, the clothes and toys are fab and the customer service is always exceptional so of course we were going to head there for Christmas!

Thursday 22 November 2018

The Welsh National Opera La Traviata

I only went to see my first opera last year so with the Welsh National Opera coming back to the Mayflower Theatre this year, I was back again for another taste. La Traviata is sung in Italian and was created by Verdi. It was first shown in 1853 but was not well received, fast forward to modern-day and it's widely appreciated by many.

Monday 19 November 2018

Being by Sanctuary Spa Face Masks

I'm a hard core Sanctuary Spa fan so when they released they're newer, younger looking brand Being, I didn't give it much of a glance if I'm honest. The Being by Sanctuary Spa range are described as bright, punchy products to tantalize your senses thanks to the fruity and delicious scents available. 

I was recently contacted about trying some products so I said yes so I could see what all the fuss was about. Two of those products were face masks and as you all know, I love a face mask! 

Sunday 18 November 2018

A night with Hilton at Ageas Bowl

Nights away are few and far between at the moment but when we do get to escape, we always make it a good one. We were invited to the Hilton Ageas Bowl for dinner, an overnight stay and full use of the spa which was exactly what was needed after a very full on few weeks. With Joshua tucked up with his Grandma, we packed a case and made our way out to the hotel which is just seven miles from Southampton City Center. 

It the perfect location for a weekend away or a stop off before a cruise or flight from Southampton Airport and with full dining, a spa and golf course, it's great for the short getaway we had in mind. 

Friday 16 November 2018

Revlon Kiss Plumping Lip Crème

For me, Revlon are the best lip products on the high street, the colour range is huge and the price is reasonable enough for you to buy one in every shade especially when they're on three for two in Boots. The Matte Lip Balms are my absolute favourite but every now and then a new product comes along and pitches up in your heart fighting for room.

That product is the Revlon Kiss Plumping Lip Crème and I have five shades, a range of pinks and nudes perfect for every day wear. The crèmes retail at £6.99 so they're a really reasonable price and with ten shades in the range, you're bound to find your perfect shade. 

Wednesday 14 November 2018

Getting out & about with Smartrike

(Features press samples - see disclaimer)

After it looked like the warmer weather was sticking around a little longer this year, one of the first things we looked into was a trike for Joshua. We really like to make the most of getting out and about at the weekends and this was a fun way for him to see more of the outside world rather than being tucked away in his pushchair.  

The Smartrike smarTfold 700 (£149.99) quickly became our go-to and as the weather has become that little bit chillier we've still made the most of getting out with our trike and from the excited giggles, I think Joshua loves it too.

Monday 12 November 2018

The Cosatto Yo 2 Stroller

Features press sample - see disclaimer 

Cosatto is a brand we've loved since I was pregnant, the products are fun, colourful and most important of all, reliable. They've seen us through each stage of our parenting journey from the Easi Peasi Changing Table which saved me after my emergency caesarean to the Noodle Supa Highchair when we started weaning and most recently of all, the Yo 2 Stroller for getting out and about with our little squidge.

Sunday 11 November 2018

Five ways I switch off from being 'Mum'

Being a mum... it's bloody hard work isn't it? Here I am in my sweat pants, mum bun and lunch crusted into my top trying to reclaim a little bit of me while I sip a coffee and fend off an over excited one year old shouting Dougieeeee.

It's exhausting, overwhelming and exhilarating but even though I adore being Joshua's mum, I also quite like switching off and just being Alice for a while too. 

And that's okay. It's okay to not just be a mum because you're also a human and babies are knackering and you are great. You're not just a mum, you're you too.

I left Joshua for the first time pretty early on, he was about six weeks old and I took myself off for a coffee, a quick shop in Chanel for a much deserved treat of the lipstick kind and a new book. That new book is still sat on my bookshelf unread, sure I've read books in between and I've tried to read this particular one but I've never quite got past the first chapter but I keep it because that book is my reminder that I need a break every now and then because I deserve it.

Take a breather
I'm terrible at taking time for myself even before I had Joshua so I really do try and make the effort now, whether it's a cup of coffee in piece for ten minutes, a book or cocktails with my best friend. It's during these moments that I get to relax with no makeup on or grab my heeled boots and a small bag without any wet wipes in and just be me, well a little less me because a hangover with a baby? Yikes!

Talking of books, have you read Paige Toon's Five Years from now yet? If not, do it! It had me sobbing and laughing.

Book in a date with a friend
If it wasn't for the support of my friends the last year, I'd have been even more of a sobbing mess in the corner than I already am butttttt I have a bloody marvellous support network who are always there for a moan, cry or prepared to knock back five Aperol Spritz and a pizza the size of my eye bags with me which helps. 

I know I'm lucky, I have amazing baby free friends and a really lovely and supportive group of mum friends so I have numerous date options. The hardest decision? Choosing where to eat!

Pamper, pamper, pamper
The beauty blogger in me will never die, fact. I love a pamper, my Sunday nights were always reserved for a bubble bath, face mask and the beauty bloggers chat back in the day and that hasn't changed much since becoming a mum, I always make sure I have time to chill in a bath once a week.

Don't worry, I shower in-between too!

The products won't test themselves after all or at least that's my excuse. I've even started going to  a beauty salon again to get my nails done which I haven't done in forever and I make sure I go on the late night opening as they always have complimentary cakes and prosecco to celebrate which makes for a happy Alice.

Solo coffee dates
A few years ago after going through a rough patch in life, to try and help myself I started venturing out more on my own. I've always loved solo shopping trips, flying on my own and just enjoying my own company but I always felt a bit odd going for coffee on my own because I thought it looked a bit sad - silly right?

It's actually one of my favourite things to do now and when my grandma ventures down to give me a hand with the sproglet, it's the first thing I go out and do and not just because she always sticks a fiver in my hand for a coffee. Pocket money still exists when you're 28, who knew?!

Now sleep is a biggy when you're a parent, you either get it or you don't. Joshua has always been a relatively good sleeper so we've never been horrifically sleep deprived but if he could start sleeping through that would be marvellous.

To help even just a little bit there's a few different products I use to help me mellow out, number one being the This Works Pillow Spray, I even have the baby version for Joshua. I'm a firm believer of using lavender to chill out so I light candles, use a bit of Lush Cosmetics Sleepy and my fave spray and chill. It helps me get ready for my night of broken sleep and definitely makes a difference for me.

And like I said, if Joshua could just start sleeping through now...

Being a mum is amazing, rewarding and honestly, I do love it but it's totally okay for me to be Alice too.

You don't have to be just a mum.


Friday 9 November 2018

Get Festive with Clarins this Christmas

Christmas has come early thanks to Clarins and I am certainly enjoying a little sprinkle of glitter. Clarins have firmly had a place in my make up collection for many years now but it's their holiday collection I really look forward to every year and this years helping is no different. Think gold, sparkles and a twist on an old fave and you've got the collection in one. 

Available to buy now, there are three products in the range and depending on what you fancy, you could pick your favourites or go all in with the new collection like me.

Wednesday 7 November 2018

The new matte CC cream in town

My love for It Cosmetics legendary CC Cream is well known and it's a product that completely turned my beauty world upside down for the better, I would buy it again and again. The thing I love about it the most is that you can wear it on its own, wear it as a base for a full  makeup look or even go semi natural with just the cream and a slick of mascara. This product knows no bounds and with the original Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream stealing my heart, the matte version was sure to be a hit too. 

There are now three versions of the best selling CC Cream including the original, Your Skin But Better CC+ Oil-Free Matte with SPF 40 (£30.00) and the Your Skin But Better CC+ Illumination SPF 50+ although the only one I am yet to try is the illumination version. I've loved the original and matte tubes so I'm sure I'll love a little glow too, it seems there is a tube for every mood! 

Monday 5 November 2018

Sweet Peony & Tangerine Hydrating Mist by Jurlique

If there is one thing I wouldn't miss out of my skincare routine, it's a spritz of a Jurlique mist. My usual go to is the bestselling Rosewater Balancing Mist which always leaves my skin feeling refreshed and soothed and so when the newest edition to the misting range was released my eyes lit up especially when I saw the fragrance. 
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