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June Empties

30 June 2014

Well June has just flown by! I managed to get loads of things used up again this month which I'm really surprised about. When I first started doing these posts I was convinced I'd have months where I hadn't used up anything, but I've proven myself wrong!

I received this shampoo from Neal and Wolf in one of my Love Me Beauty boxes and I really enjoyed using it. It smells fantastic and left my hair super soft, I only wish I'd had the conditioner to go with it! 

Repurchase? I might get the shampoo and conditioner if I'm feeling flush!

I really wanted to like this shampoo and conditioner from Beauty Protector. I loved the hair oil I had to try out, but I found that the shampoo made my hair feel sort of sticky and it also seemed to irritate my scalp a bit. 

Repurchase? No.


This shower gel from Soap and Glory was one of the last items from the Yule Monty set to get used up. It's a lovely zesty lemon scent and it exfoliated my skin really well.

Repurchase? Maybe, I have lots of shower gels to use up at the moment.

This Magnolia shower gel from M&S was a Christmas present that I have only just gotten around to using! It had quite a heavy floral scent which really isn't my kind of thing, but it was only a small tube so it didn't really matter.

Repurchase? No.

I think I received this bath oil from Aromatherapy Associates in a Birchbox, and I managed to get two baths out of it. It smells fantastic, and I definitely felt extremely relaxed after using it.

Repurchase? At £40 a bottle, probably not!

This lotion from Yin Yang was another Birchbox sample. I mainly used it as a hand cream and it was quite nourishing, but it didn't really do a lot for some of the dry skin I had on my knuckles. It had a really nice scent though, it sort of reminded me of herbal tea!

Repurchase? No.

 This Garnier body oil sample came with the May Glossybox, and even though lots of people seemed really keen on it, I didn't really like it that much. I might have needed a bigger sample to try it out for longer, but I just didn't feel like it was a particularly outstanding product.

Repurchase? No.

This S5 moisturiser lasted me for ages, as I only needed to use a tiny bit at a time. I think it would be better suited to people with really dry skin, as my combination skin seemed to struggle with the amount of hydration this moisturiser provided.

Repurchase? No. 


 If you're a regular reader, you'll know that Simple face washes are a staple for me! I picked up this moisturising face wash as my usual one was sold out. I didn't like it as much, but it was fine for what I needed.

Repurchase? If my usual face wash wasn't available, yes.

This cleanser from Essential Care is amazing. Even though it is described as a coconut cleanser, it doesn't smell like coconuts. It just has pleasant slightly herbal scent, and left my skin feeling amazing. It removed a lot of make up, although it did struggle a bit with certain mascaras.

Repurchase? Yes.

Weekly Book Round Up #46

28 June 2014

I really like reading autobiographies, especially those of comedians, and David Mitchell (of Mitchell and Webb) is someone that I've always found very funny. Initially, I struggled a bit with this book as it is laid out in quite a strange way, but once I got into it I enjoyed it. It was particularly interesting to read about his time as a Cambridge University student, and how he met many of the people he now works with. I didn't find it a funny book, he often goes off on long tangents that I found a little bit boring and long winded but overall I still found this to be an interesting read.

Nicola's rating: 3.5/5

S.J. Bolton is one of my favourite thriller/crime authors, and the latest edition to the Lacey Flint series did not fail to disappoint! We rejoin Lacey after her recent traumatic cases, living on a boat on the Thames. Life isn't entirely peaceful though, as someone has started to leave strange objects on her boat, and she discovers the body of a young woman wrapped in a shroud in the river. I was kept guessing for the majority of the book, and thoroughly creeped out in other parts, and as a result I devoured this book in a couple of days. I can't wait for the next one!

Nicola's rating: 4.5/5

MUA Starry Night Palette

26 June 2014

And relaaax. After getting all of those beauty box posts out of the way, who's up for a quick peek at some pretty eyeshadow?
I recently spotted this palette whilst popping into Superdrug and couldn't resist adding it to my basket. MUA palettes are always such good value for money, and I've wanted this one for ages. Seeing it in person, I knew I would absolutely have to have it, the colours are just beautiful and it always seems to be sold out on the website.

The Starry Night palette mainly contains silvery blues and greys, but there are also a couple of dusky lilacs and a deep black. I really like wearing shimmery shadows so this palette is pretty much ideal for me!

Here I've swatched the top row. This has the darker shades which probably won't get much use, but that blue and lilac are gorgeous! I know blue eyeshadow can be seen as a bit 80's, but applied lightly this could be a winner.

This is the bottom row and it's definitely my favourite out of the two. These softer colours will be easier for me to wear during the day, and I'm particularly loving the purples.

Do you love to rock a shimmery eye during the day?
The Starry Night palette is £4 and is available here or from your local Superdrug.

Love Me Beauty Box - June 2014

25 June 2014

After last month's Love Me Beauty box went off on a bit of a lifestyle tangent, I was interested to see where the June box would go. This month there seems to have been more of an emphasis on make up which I was happy to see, and I decided to go with option 3 (again).

To get the bad stuff out of the way first, I'm really disappointed with the shade of nail polish I received. I haven't tried any nail polishes from Nyx before, so I was pretty excited to see a shimmery gold colour pictured for option 3. However, it does say that colours may vary and unfortunately I've picked up a rather boring brown shade called 'Truffle'. I really don't like it, and I don't think I'll be able to rehome it easily.

With that out of the way, on to the good stuff! I received my second Montagne Jeunesse masque from a beauty box, this is a peel off formula with black seaweed. I have a lot of masques at the moment that have a 'clay' type formula that set on your face, so I'm intrigued to try a peel off one! I might be busting this out on Friday after work as a bit of a treat.

Initially, the colour of this lipstick from ModelCo really put me off. It looks so dark! But once applied, I actually really liked it. It feels quite creamy and comfortable on my lips and the mirror on the side is a really cute touch too!

I also received the Define-fx mascara from Beauty UK which is another brand I haven't tried before. The wand is exactly what I want from a mascara, not too big and unwieldy, with the smaller plastic bristles. I've had a quick go with this and it definitely defined my lashes, there was no clumping to be seen!

I also received my second Urban Veda sample for the month! This is the exfoliating version of the face wash I received from the You Beauty Discovery box. I absolutely loved that face wash, it left my skin so clean feeling and refreshed, so I'm pretty sure I'll love using this as well!

I think this was a birthday extra from Love Me Beauty, as I haven't filled out enough surveys to receive any extras yet. I like Jelly Pong Pong but I don't use eyeliners so I'll be giving this away, but a nice touch nonetheless.

I think Love me Beauty have redeemed themselves this month, I'm a little bit disappointed to only have a small sample of Urban Veda as they aren't an expensive brand and Love Me Beauty have always (in the past) provided bigger items in their boxes and that was what made me subscribe in the first place. The other items are full size though so I shouldn't really be complaining, but the value of the boxes have definitely gone down dramatically since I first started subscribing to Love Me Beauty.

What did you think to this month's box?


Glossybox - June 2014

24 June 2014

After a bit of a disappointing start to my 3 month subscription to Glossybox, I was hoping that the June box would be an improvement! Unfortunately, I'm still not impressed with the selection I've received.

One of the things I was most excited about this month was the option to receive a So Susan product, and I was hoping I would get the blusher! I actually received the concealer quad which can also be used for contouring. I don't really use concealer and contouring is way out of my league beauty wise, so this will be rehomed. 

I also received this Novex hair cream. I'm not really sure what this is meant to be used for, I think it might just be an extra conditioning treatment but it's not something I will use. The majority of the writing on the packaging isn't in English either which doesn't really help!

The other item in this month's box that I'm pretty disappointed with is this perfume from Roger and Gallet. Perfume is a very personal thing so I think it's always a bit risky sending out a sample this big in a beauty box. This is way too floral for me and I really don't like it. Hopefully someone I know will want it!

Bad stuff aside, I was pretty pleased to see Nail Girls in the box. I would have preferred a coloured polish but I don't actually own any base coats so I'm itching to give this a try. I think this is meant to be a base and top coat, as well as a nail strengthener so it's a pretty good multi-tasker!

The final item in this month's box is this eyeshadow brush from Teeez. I don't have many brushes so new ones are always welcome. I'm really excited to try out some different looks with this!

Overall, only 2 out of the 5 products in this month's box will be kept. The rest will be given away to whoever wants them. Looking at this month's Birchbox, Glossybox just doesn't compare in terms of quality. There might have been smaller samples in Birchbox, but at least they're all items I will actually use. 

What did you think of this month's Glossybox?

Birchbox - June 2014

23 June 2014

Another month, another great box from Birchbox! Never have I been so glad to be resubscribed to a beauty box. Birchbox have been absolutely nailing it recently and even though I was apprehensive about a 'football' theme, they've carried it off with aplomb!

Having recently discovered OPI through my duty free bargains, I was pretty excited to see a mini bottle in the box! This is from the OPI Brazil collection and even though this isn't a shade I would have picked for myself, I actually really like it. It has a sort of carnival feel to it that fits with the theme really well.

Yves Rocher is a brand I've tried before, but I haven't tried out their make up. Initially, I thought this peachy lipstick was really not my kind of shade but once I swatched it, I immediately changed my mind. It doesn't add a full on peach colour, but it is pretty unforgiving on dry lips. It does say that it contains cherry oil to moisturise though so leaving it on for a while might do me some good!

This hair mask from Silk + Honey is pretty intriguing. It's a really decent sized sample so I should be able to get a couple of uses out of it, and it smells really nice too. I've not tried hair masks before so this is definitely something I'll be giving a go soon!

I also received a diddy sample of the Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre, which is an ultra soothing moisturiser, and can also be used as a make up remover and all over body moisturiser. I might give this a try on some of my dry patches to see how it handles them, French products are always pretty spot on though.

Finally, I received the Naobay body lotion. This smells really nice and I was pretty happy to see soemthing like this in my box as I 'm actually starting to run pretty low on body lotion! It's got a lovely lemony scent and contains shea butter, olive and avocado oils. 

For this months lifestyle extra we received this cute little flip flop keyring! I've already put this on my 
work keys, I think its a really nice little addition to the box.

Overall, such a good box! I feel like the samples are mainly really well sized, and everything fits the theme really well. I think this must be the third box in a row now that Birchbox have done really well in my opinion, I can't wait to see what they come up with next!

Do you subscribe to Birchbox? What did you think to this month's box?

Weekly Book Round Up #45

20 June 2014

I was pretty excited to see a spin-off series from Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl after their Beautiful Creatures series ended, especially when I heard that these books would be following Ridley and Link. Ridley is a siren, and Link is a hybrid incubus. After saying goodbye to their friends in Gatlin, they travel to New York. Ridley is in a whole heap of trouble after losing 2 bets to the owner of a club, and one of her debts is a drummer. In the process of paying off her debt, Ridley manages to alienate Link and the rest of the people in his band. Set in a dark underworld of magic and persuasion, I really enjoyed the beginning of this new series. The ending was really irritating though, a huge cliffhanger that I'm going to have to wait ages to resolve! Boo! You could probably read this if you haven't read the Beautiful Creatures books, but you might feel a bit confused at the start.

Nicola's rating: 4/5

You Beauty Discovery Box - June 2014

18 June 2014

You Beauty have outdone themselves again this month with another fab menu, with the theme being an introduction to summer. Here's what I picked!

I decided (after much deliberation) to go for the Urban Veda Daily Purifying Facial Wash and the L'oreal Paris Infallible 24 Hour Lip Colour in Timeless Rose. We also received a face mask from Montagne Jeunesse and a wash cloth.

I love seeing Urban Veda in beauty boxes, it's become one of my favourite brands! I've tried creams and face washes from them before and I'm always impressed. This is a face wash that I haven't tried before, but it feels like it will be a lovely product to use over the summer. It has a very refreshing scent, sort of minty.

I wasn't sure what to expect from this lip gloss but I just decided to give it a go. It's a double ended product, with gloss at one end and a sealing balm at the other. Whether the balm really does work for 24 hours, I dont know, but it certainly held up very well whilst eating and drinking and it's a gorgeous colour. The gloss feels very luxurious as well, not sticky or tacky.

The freebies! Having just gotten into face masks I was quite excited to see that we'd be getting one from Montagne Jeunesse. They're a brand I've heard a lot about but never tried, so I'm excited to try this out! The wash cloth has come in really handy, as I've been suffering rather a lot with hayfever at the moment so having a nice cloth to cool my itchy eyes has been a lifesaver!

I just can't get over how consistently good these boxes are. The range of products to choose from is always so wide, with quality brands to pick. For £6.95 a month, you really can't go wrong!

Do you subscribe to You Beauty? What did you pick this month?

Weekly Book Round Up #44

17 June 2014

So this was meant to be last Friday's weekly book round up, but I've been really ill with Tonsillitis so today is my first day back to blogging! I'll hopefully have some beauty box posts later this week for y'all!

This book is the second in the Blackwell Pages series, written by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong. The books are aimed at young adults, and follow a group of teens who are the chosen champions of Norse gods and face the challenge of trying to prevent Ragnarok. With all the hype surrounding Norse mythology at the moment (partly in thanks to Chris Hemsworth's Thor) these books could not have come out at a better time. I do find them a bit childish in places, but the adventures are fun and the quest has kept me immersed in the story. I don't know a lot about Norse mythology, but these books have made me interested to learn a bit more about it.

Nicola's rating: 3.5/5

This was a bit of an impulse purchase for my kindle before we went on holiday. We saw the film last year and I liked it, so I decided to give the book a try. The book is very different to the film, and I found it quite hard to get through in places. There are a couple of quite long winded chapters that go on about various American football games the main character goes to see, and while I can understand why they were included, I just found them a bit boring. The main story is about Pat, who has mental health issues for undisclosed reasons (at the beginning of the story). He is introduced to Tiffany through friends who are clearly trying to get the two of them together. Even with the boring football chapters, I really enjoyed this book. It was definitely interesting to read about the different ways people react to mental health issues, especially one scene in particular when a football player is being derided by the crowd at a game for supposedly attempting suicide. Pat's brother is among those who are jeering, even though he has a close member of his family who has struggled with serious depression, and other issues. 

Nicola's rating: 4/5