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Tuesday, 14 February 2017

My Second Pregnancy Update | 20 Weeks and Gender Reveal

I am officially 21 weeks pregnant today, or yesterday as you're reading this. I am now a little halfway through the pregnancy and I just cannot believe how fast it has gone. Just the other day me and Josh attended our second scan at 20 weeks which of course can only mean one thing, the big gender reveal. I have been pretty excited about this ever since I found out I was pregnant. From day one I was looking up old wives tales and taking part in gender tests. You could say I was slightly obsessed. Don't get me wrong I have never been fussed about the gender of the baby but the lead up to that 20 week scan is super long and there's a lot of speculation within the family as to whether it's a girl or boy. 

The suspense leading up from the maternity reception to the sonographers room was ridiculous. I was super nervous and thinking many things. What if the baby's not developing properly? What if the baby's got his/her legs closed? Will I be left disappointed if they can't tell me the gender? Thankfully I got my mind put to rest seconds into the scan as all was revealed that the baby was developing well and we were told we were expecting another beautiful little boy. Yes, another boy and a little brother for Alfie. I had a sneaking suspicion it was going to be a boy due to the lack of sickness I was having and the similarities between my pregnancy with Alfie and this little one. There really is such a thing as a mothers intinct isn't there

During the scan we was shown his little heart beating away and he seemed to be very active in the womb too, always changing directions and we even saw him swallow the amniotic fluid which is a sure sign he is doing well. If you can't tell by the scan photo that's what he was in fact doing. It's so adorable!
20 Weeks Pregnancy Update and Gender Reveal
We are both so excited about adding another little boy to the family, we've even started talking about baby names already, although I have to admit we're not getting any closer to choosing one. I always find boys names more difficult to choose from compared to girls. I have been getting lots of suggestions from family members and friends and I've been rejecting every single one of them, I am so fussy. I guess I just want it to be right for little boo, especially as Alfie's name was chosen so quickly into the pregnancy.

Anyway putting the baby names and gender reveal aside let's talk about the changes. Urgh, deary me, it's sure been a whirlwind so far. I completely forgot just how much my body goes through when carrying a baby. There's ups and downs for sure, in my case it's been a mixture of both. My morning sickness, or evening sickness as I've had has completely died down, although I seem to be coming down with every illness under the sun. I had a stomach bug back in December, I've been getting colds left right and centre and now I've been struck down with the most horrifying hacking cough known to man. I may be overreacting but I've had this bloomin' cough twice now and they seem to be lasting forever(2-3 weeks to be precise). It sucks when you know there's not a lot of medication you can take. I guess I'm stuck with a prescription of good ol' paracetamol and plenty of fluids for now. 

As I mentioned in my last update I was also having fainting episodes due to low blood pressure but I have since had my blood pressure checked by the consultant and it seems to have returned back to normal again. It's such a relief as I've been suffering with these terrible head rushes that left me feeling disorientated for hours after. It's actually quite a frightening experience. I had to grab hold of Josh when I was sitting down as it felt like the whole world had moved beneath me. I never want to feel like that again.

I really don't feel like I have that pregnancy glow about me right now. I mean is that even a thing? I certainly didn't have that the first time round and I definitely don't now. My acne is flaring up all over the place and I've been trying out a variety of new skincare to combat that but to no avail. Urgh, basically I look like absolute rubbish. Thank god for makeup so I have the ability to make myself look half decent. 

On the plus side little boo has been getting bigger and stronger each day with his little kicks, twists and turns. Everyday I feel something entirely new, just yesterday I was watching a horror film and he jumped out of nowhere, just as it was leading up to the scary part. Maybe that was his way of warning me that watching a horror with a cup of tea in one hand and biscuits in the other wasn't the smartest of ideas I've made. Speaking of biscuits that leads me to talk about cravings. Thankfully I haven't had any weird cravings so far, and I hope I don't further along the line either. I've had a few things that I've been relatively obsessed with eating but it's perfectly normal, I promise. I haven't stopped eating hot cross buns, pancakes and crumpets. No idea why, although I loved them before pregnancy anyway. Perhaps I just want all the carbs. Another thing that I have been enjoying are milkshakes. Yet again another thing I loved before pregnancy but it seems to have increased a fair bit. Speaking about all of that right now is making me staaarving. 

Oh I just cannot wait until the day I meet little man. There is just 19 weeks to go. I say just, but the last 21 weeks has disappeared in a flash. I really hope this birth goes a lot smoother, not that anything seriously bad happened the first time. I was in labour for around two to three hours with Alfie before he arrived in the world so not long compared to others but I managed to tear(sorry tmi). I also managed to carry on through the pain without any painkillers too which I was so proud about. I'm kinda hoping I won't need anything this time either but I will definitely have gas and air on hand if I need it for sure. 

I am looking forward to seeing how things progress from here!
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Friday, 10 February 2017

My 2016 Beauty Favourites

At the end of the year I would normally share my favourite beauty products that I came to love and enjoy that year. With a month already having passed into the new year and us being in february now I was unsure whether I should just share them with you. However I decided to go ahead and jump on the bandwagon and show you what my favourite beauty products were in 2016 anyway. Such a rebel. If I were you I'd grab a cuppa tea and some biscuits because this is going to be a loooong one. 

So starting off with the base products first of course, my favourite foundation. It was the Estee Lauder Doublewear Foundation that won that award. I've actually had quite a love and hate relationship with this ever since I first bought it(see my first impressions here) but I had really grown to love it during the last few months of 2016. It is a full coverage foundation which I love and it covers up every imperfection I could wish for, not to mention it is super long lasting too. 

My favourite concealer is a super easy one, but unfortunately I have sadly misplaced it! We have switched rooms around for the arrival of the new baby in a few months and it is still yet to be found, I could shed a tear or two. On the plus side it's quite inexpensive and comes in the form of the Bourjois Radiance Reveal Concealer. I believe it was a new launch last year and I pretty much knew I was gonna love it as soon as I swatched it. The lightest shade is the perfect match for my fair skin tone and it has hyaluronic acid within it which makes it ideal as an under eye concealer as it hydrates as well as brightening and concealing. Oh it is seriously dreamy. I will need to purchase another asap!
My 2016 Beauty Favourites
Now moving onto powder which is certainly a liiitle bit pricey, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused Light. I luckily bought this from another blogger just last year for a little less than the RRP and I have been using it pretty much daily ever since. With that aside it imparts a beautiful flattering glow on the skin and works well to diffuse any redness or pinky tones on my skin. It is also very soft and feels almost lightweight on the skin so it doesn't feel like you're wearing any powder which is a huge plus. A little goes a long way for sure.

In 2016 I experimented quite a lot with contour and came to the conclusion that the Kat Von D Shade and Light Contour Palette was something that I needed to add to my evergrowing collection. Of course I did just that when KVD was finally released at Debenhams in the UK and I can happily say that I've had no regrets about buying it since. Every single contour shade within the palette is universal and suitable for every skin tone, more importantly fair skin tones like mine. They are so soft and blendable too. I have not put it down ever since I bought it and nothing else I have compares to it. A bold statement but it's so true. It shall stay a firm favourite until someone can convince me otherwise.

For the last few years I have been switching up my blushes daily, well, that was until 2016 arrived and I came across the Urban Decay Afterglow Blush in Score. It is a medium pinky-peach with a little touch of shimmer to it which adds a little soft lit within glow to the cheeks. It's unlike any other blush that I own. It is a neutral shade so it can be paired with any makeup look and any skin tone which is why I probably tend to use it more often than not. 

And lastly for the base is Highlighter, my favourite subject. The Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette became quite a big thing last year and for good reason too. You've probably seen me rant about my love for it a number of times so all I'm gonna say is if you haven't got it, you're gonna need it. Seriously, the pigmentation is whoooah, a little shocking but the shades within are beautiful! My particular favourite is the lavender shade. 

Moving away from the base products, let's talk all about the eyes. I first delved into Colourpop last year which I am more than happy about. I rarely use or buy single shadows but when I laid my eyes on the swatches I just knew I had to at least add one, or perhaps two to my basket. In the end I did just that and bought the Colourpop Super Shock Shadow in Weenie and Nillionaire. Unfortunately Nillionaire was a bit of a disappointment for me but luckily I fell in love with the shade Weenie. A super weird name but a beautiful shade nonetheless. It's a gorgeous rose gold shade with a pearlized finish and creamy feel. Need I say more?

Onto zee brows. Now if you read my previous post about my current eyebrow routine you may have come across Benefit Gimme Brow so I don't want to divulge too much. It is my favourite eyebrow product of 2016 for good reason though. It is fabulous for adding some colour and volume to the brows as well as setting them in place. 

For eyeshadow palettes I completely fell head over heels in love with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette. It isn't much of a shock that it became quite the must have cult palette last year. The eyeshadows are so rich in pigmentation and apply seamlessly onto the lid. It's very much a 'me' palette with the mixture of reds, pink and orange tones inside

I wouldn't normally put this in a beauty favourites for some reason but I actually found myself becoming attached to an eyeshadow primer. It's not the kind of product I would get excited by but what the heck, I love it. My favourite eyeshadow primer of 2016 was the Urban Decay Original Primer Potion. I only have a sample size which came alongside an order of mine. It sets eyeshadow in place like no other, no smudging, no creasing, just flawless application. I have no other words for it. I'll need to get an original size once I've ran out. 

At one point I used to be all about the liquid liner. Don't get me wrong I still love it now but I love my eyeshadow more. With that aside there was one liquid liner that I became quite attached to, the Kat Von D Liquid Liner in Trooper. It is super black and easy to use and control to get the perfect 'flick' without overdoing it.
Last for the eyes is of course Mascara! I experimented with quite a few mascaras last year and although I liked some of them there was one that topped them all, the Maybelline Lash Sensational Luscious Mascara. It's pretty much the same as the original Lash Sensational Mascara but with added oils to keep my lashes looking softer and denser. It doesn't affect the volume or length which is a huge plus, and it is easier to remove too.

Now we are finally getting to the end of the post. If you've got this far I thank you and give you a huge round of applause. If you want to find out my favourite lip products then just keep on reading ladies(or gents perhaps).

 I have two favourites, both of which are liquid lipsticks, how typical of me. The first is the Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Celebrity Skin. It's literally the most perfect brown toned nude for all skin tones and it dries down to a nice matte finish without any crusting or drying out the lips. Love it! The other is the Sleek Matte Me Lip Cream in Birthday Suit. Yep, you guessed it, it's another nude. It is super wearable and comfortable on the lips, not to mention it's affordable too! I have a variety of other shades too which I wished I had included but Birthday Suit is my favourite of them all. 

 Well that was a breeze wasn't it? haha. I don't like to single any product out and I have a tendency to babble a lot. I really hope you enjoying reading anyway, even if you have perhaps finished your cuppa before you got to the end. 

What are your 2016 beauty favourites?
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Tuesday, 7 February 2017

My Current Eyebrow Routine

Eyebrows are probably the one thing that I am a complete perfectionist at. This never used to be the case though, while everyone was plucking their brows as thin as they could I was growing them out, don't ask me why, I really have no idea. Although bushy brows weren't quite 'on trend' back then I am so glad I left them alone. I never used to pluck them until the age of around 16. I was so friggin' scared of touching them in case they went awry. Thankfully I've never put a foot wrong with them(except a beauty therapist), but we will speak about that another time. As of right now I am happy enough plucking and shaping them myself. 

I would like to think I have my eyebrow routine down to a tee right now. I don't do a whole lot with them when I'm not wearing makeup except a little plucking here and there when they've overgrown but when I do put a little effort in I reach for the same tool and products to get them looking as defined and well groomed as I like them to be.
My tool of choice is the Anastasia Beverly Hills Large Synthetic Duo Brow Brush(£15). On one side of the brush is an angled brush and on the other is a spoolie which is perfect for brushing through my brows, getting rid of any excess product, and therefore giving me a more natural but defined look. I like to use that particular brush in conjuction with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Medium Brown(£15) first of all which is the absolute perfect match for my hair. It is of a gel-mousse consistency and glides onto the brows with ease too, adhering to each hair and it doesn't budge until I remove it with my micellar water. It is so long lasting and a little really does go a long way, whether you want a more natural or bold look.

After carving out my brows with the Dipbrow I like to go over any sparse areas and further define the tail of my brows with an eyebrow pencil. My favourite is the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Medium Brown(£15.50). If you couldn't tell by now I am very much in love with Anastasia Beverly Hills brow products, the quality of them is impeccable and they last for so long. As well as using the Brow Wiz alongside my Dipbrow I also find that it works just as good on its own too for a subtle, toned down look and it only takes a matter of minutes to achieve it

The third and final step within my eyebrow routine is a new addition to my brow routine, Benefit Gimme Brow(£20). It is a volumising tinted brow gel which not only adds some colour and fullness to the brows but it also contains very tiny microfibres which clings onto existent hairs and keeps them in place throughout the day. It also helps that it has a tiny brush which makes it easier to brush the hairs into the right place and shape. There is a small variety of shades to choose from but I like to use 5 Deep for this, although I would most likely suit 3 Medium. Like the Brow Wiz it can easily be used on its own which I like to do on the very few occasions I want to wear very minimal makeup.

 What is your Current Eyebrow Routine? What are your favourite Eyebrow products?
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Friday, 3 February 2017

Lorena Öberg Skincare | DermaEraze Miracle Oil Review

Two posts in the space of one week? You lucky things! I have been telling myself to make more time for my blog and put more focus into it. That's my goal this year, although I'm concerned things may go a little awry when the baby is here. Fingers crossed that just won't be the case. 

With that aside, I wanted to introduce you to a certain oil that I have been trying out over the last two months or so, the Lorena Öberg DermaEraze Miracle Oil. It was originally created as an aftercare oil for Lorena's DermaEraze treatment for stretch mark and scar removal but has since been recommended to be used on it's own too due to its moisturising and healing properties.
Lorena Öberg DermaEraze Miracle Oil
The DermaEraze Miracle Oil is essentially a skin conditioner, or moisturiser if you will in oil form that is made up of a variety of antioxidant oils such as Almond, Olive and Avocado. Each oil serves entirely different purposes and benefits the skin in different ways. Olive oil contains vitamin E which helps protect the skin from premature aging and UV light as well as lowering inflammation. Almond oil is a light oil enriched with vitamins A, B and E which add moisture to the skin without clogging pores. That's brilliant news if you're acne prone like me as it won't exacerbate the acne. And lastly, Avocado oil, which is found to be effective as an acne prevention treatment as well as preventing ageing due to its high level of vitamin E.

It can be be used to treat and heal a variety of skin issues such as dry skin, blemishes, stretch marks, chapped lips, sun burn and it can even be used on the ends of dry hair too. Talking of stretch marks I already have my fair share of them after my first pregnancy and although they don't necessarily bother me I don't want anymore to appear during this second pregnancy so I have been trying to treat and prevent them using the DermaEraze Miracle Oil. I have been using it almost daily, morning and night(when I don't forget) to the areas I need it such as the thighs, bum, hips and boobs. Yep, boobs! You'd be surprised how much your body stretches and changes when you're making way for a baby. 

Although I've been using the oil quite often for two months I am still yet to see any improvement in my stretch marks but I haven't noticed any new ones popping up which can only be a good thing. I have enjoyed using it as an all over body moisturiser in the meantime as it completely nourishes and softens my skin. I do find it a pleasure to use and smells divine!

I have also been using it after cleansing at night and before my moisturiser if I have a few dry patches and come morning my skins overall texture is greatly improved. It feels so much softer and smoother which makes my skin easier to work with if I'm applying makeup in the morning. I don't find it great to apply in the morning before makeup though as I find it has quite a greasy feel to it and leaves me looking shiny, which as you can imagine is not a great look. 

As well as using it as a moisturiser for my dry skin I have also been using it to treat my poorly chapped lips this Winter. The weather has not been good to me at all and I find my lips getting dry and chapped more often. I like to apply a small amount of the Miracle Oil onto my finger and glide it along my lips. Admittedly it does feel really strange and oily once applied but it works absolute wonders. Granted it doesn't make your lips look kissable straightaway but after a few uses I began to see an improvement.

I really do think the DermaEraze Miracle Oil is a fabulous multipurpose product, although I only use it to treat a few skin concerns that I have. I have thorougly enjoyed using it and will continue to do so. It comes in three sizes, 50ml(which I have), 100ml and 250ml and prices range from £15-£35. It does appear to be a little steep in price but I think it's great value for money as it can be used to treat a variety of skin concerns rather than just one. 

Have you tried the Lorena Öberg DermaEraze Miracle Oil? What's your favourite multipurpose skincare product?
*Post Contains PR Samples- Please read my full disclaimer here.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Mascaras I've Been Trialling Lately

As of the last few months or so I have been finding myself becoming obsessed with finding more budget friendly mascaras. I was getting a little bit bored of using the same one over and over again. For those that are interested my ultimate favourite mascara for the last year has been the Maybelline Lash Sensational Luscious Mascara. There's just something about it that made me keep repurchasing it. Perhaps it was the curvature of the wand that made it easier to get to the teeniest of lashes or maybe it was the way it made my lashes look super fluttery and dramatic. It was everything I wanted in a mascara, or so I thought. Lately I've been loving the effect of mascara on my bottom lashes as well as the top and the Maybelline mascara just didn't do anything for the bottom lashes at all, it was pretty much a disaster. However since starting my search for more budget friendly mascaras I have come across one that is absolutely perfect for my bottom lashes thanks to the team over at False Eyelashes. Granted it isn't the best on the top lashes due to the lack of volume it gives but I really couldn't care less. It is so good! Let's introduce you to the L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara in Carbon Black.
Mascaras I've Been Trialling Lately
First of all it is so black, like the blackest of black, which I love! It applies wet but dries quite quickly. I had absolutely zero problems with smudging having tested it out in the rain numerous times. Each time I've gone to look in the mirror it's still there very much in place. As for the wand it is super long, straight and thin with a liiittle bit of flexibility to it. Now that might seem like it's difficult to use but it is surpringly easy to control. The wand separates every lash with ease, avoiding any clumping and I can get to every single little lash, even those teeny ones hiding away in the corners. It is fabulous! It adds a whole lot of length too! It makes my eyes look so much wider which is nice as I find my eyes look so much smaller without mascara. As I mentioned before it doesn't add much in terms of volume but I quite like the drama to be on the top lashes rather than the bottom. I absolutely love it! If you're looking for a new budget friendly mascara for the bottom lashes then perhaps you may enjoy this. I cannot fault it in the slightest. At only £10.95 it is so affordable. I shall purchase once I have run out for sure.

As well as trialling the L'Oreal Mascara I have also been using the Bourjois Volume Glamour Push Up Mascara in Ultra Black. I have never tried a Bourjois Mascara before so I was intrigued to see how it worked for me, and if it was as really good as it sounds. Unfortunately I found it very hard to work with. The wand is quite big and clumpy which makes application a bit messy in my opinion and it doesn't hold a curl. In fact my lashes looked quite straight and I found myself having to use another mascara on top of it to get the look I desired. I am so gutted I didn't like it, however that won't stop me trying another Bourjois Mascara in the future. I want to see what else they have to offer. If you do fancy giving it a go yourself it is just £8.95.
Mascaras I've Been Trialling Lately
I may not have liked the Bourjois Mascara but the L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara has become a firm favourite in my makeup routine. I am so glad that I've discovered it thanks to those over at FalseEyeLashes. I've thoroughly enjoyed trialling them, and in the process I have found one I love. 

If you're thinking of purchasing one or maybe both of the above then head over to False Eyelashes where they don't just stock mascaras but false eyelashes too(obviously!) from some fab brands such as Ardell, Eylure, House of Lashes and so much more!

Have you been trialling some new mascaras lately? What is your favourite?

*Post Contains PR Samples- Please read my full disclaimer here.


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