LIFE // Update + New Layout

Hi Guys, 

A bit of a quick update for you as I listen to the wind howling outside, I've just put my PJs on and settled down with a blanket and a cup of Pukka Wild Apple & Cinnamon tea, which is the actual bomb, check it out if you're a fan of herbal tea's, it's keeping me going this winter but anyway, I wanted to give you a bit of an update, you may have noticed the layout has changed a bit around these parts, I've kept the same logo but made it a bit clearer, but the main body of the blog is a little bit cleaner and fresher, New year, new blog and all that jazz! I'm hoping it will rejuvanate me into blogging a bit more often, my plan is at least 2 posts a week moving up to 4 hopefully in a few months, when I started this blog, I had just started working from home and I wanted something that would break up the working day from the evening, which sounds a bit weird to stay sitting on the computer  when you've finished working but I think there was some sensible reasoning behind it at the time but I really love blogging now, it' gives me a little escape, my job can be ridiculously stressful and high pressure at times, which is why this is a little escape for me, where I can do it when I fancy really so I don't want to put too many pressures on myself to upload on certain days although I might do that at some point in the future so I kind of force myself to break away from work and do something I enjoy, working from home, means you can sometimes end up working ridiculous hours which I really want to cut back on. Anyway, I'm digressing a bit and this post is turning into a bit of a brain dump but hey, if you can't brain dump on your own blog, where can you?! 

Ummm, so I've decided to start doing a few more set posts on here as well, like Monthly Favourites, which will be beauty related but I also want some lifestyle bits in there as well so may include clothes, homeware and most likely Tea, tea makes the world a happy place for me, nothing beats a blanket, a book and a cup of hot tea to keep the happiness alive.

Final thing, has anyone watched Haven? It's on Amazon Instant Prime and it's my latest obsession, I want to live in a little fishing village in Canada with my pooch, blankets and tea of course. Talking of pooches, I'm going to stick a picture of Dixie in for this post, she's growing up so quick, I went into the office the other day and started rambling about how she was growing up so fast, yadda, yadda, yadda, started flicking through pictures and showing people before realising I was talking to 5 middle aged men who had zero interest in my despair that my puppy was going to be 7 months old this week, true story.

Let me know what you think of the new layout and if there are any types of post you like reading? How do you find these rambly posts?

Hope you're all having a dreamy weekend.

Soph xx

REVIEW // Beneft Radiant Skincare Set

I've been intrigued by the Benefit Skincare range for a while, I went to a Benefit event a year or so ago and they used the cleansing milk on me to remove my makeup and I was pleasantly surprised with it, it was lightly scented but did a good job of taking everything off and leaving my skin feeling soft as well, but for some reason I never really think to go to them when I'm looking for new products, they're definitely a makeup brand in my head but then I saw this little set which includes a selection of miniatures from across the range, great for holidays or trips away but also really great to try everything out, at £14 for this set, it's really great value, there is plenty in each little sample to give you a good chance to test everything out. The whole range smells lovely, quite a fresh, subtle fragrance, I don't normally get along with scented products on my skin but I didn't have any issues with this and I enjoyed using pretty much every product in here, If you're thinking of delving into the Benefit Skincare range or need a complete set for a holiday, I'd definitely look into this.

Foamingly Clean Wash - 8.9g

This was the first thing I tested out and it's really nice, it gives a good foam and leaves skin clean but still soft and not at all stripped, reminds me of the Origins Checks and Balances formula wise in that it's a foam that really lathers up when it hits water and is massaged into skin, really nice and one I'd happily repurchase.

Refined Finish Facial Polish - 8.9g

I've only tried this once because I'm not a huge fan of grainy exfoliators but it was OK, buffed away at my skin without being harsh at all and my skin felt baby smooth after using.

Moisture Prep Toning Lotion

This one was a bit hit and miss for me, nothing majorly wrong with it but it didn't really feel like it was doing much, it might be that this one needs more than a sample size amount to see the benefits, I also tend to prefer an acid toner so it might just be down to preference.

Triple Performing Emulsion Lotion SPF 15 - 8.9g

I liked this and I liked that it had SPF built into it but it was too light for my skin so I had to pair it with the other cream in the box, I do have very dry skin though so if your skin leans to the normal / oily side, this would probably be just about perfect.

Total Moisture Facial Cream - 3g

This is my favourite item out of the set, smells lovely, is quite rich and creamy but sinks in quickly, I have way too many moisturisers to work through but if i'm in the market for one any time soon, I'll definitely check this out.

It's potent Eye Cream - 3g

This is nice and rich eye cream, definitely one if your skin is a little dry around the eyes and great for the winter months, it left the skin around my eyes feeling soft and moisturised.

And, that's it - what do you think? Will you be trying out Benefit's skincare range?

Soph x

REVIEW // Birchbox January 2015

I was quite excited to get this month's Birchbox, I'd seen the sneak preview that it was in collaboration with Women's Health which I think is brilliant and perfect timing! In theory I should love this box, it's got Caudalie, HealGel and Stila which are all pretty big brands but unfortunately none of them excite me that much, I think I'll get use from the HealGel and the Caudalie products but the Stila lip gloss just isn't a colour I'd normally wear it's a good mix of brands but the sample sizes  are kind of small and there's nothing that's a WOW product for me. I'm particuarly happy with Pilates band, I used to have one but lost it, but thy really are good! Here's a run down of what I got:

activbod Cooling Finish Lotion

This is for use after a workout, contains menthol to help re-invigorate you, I actually quite like the smell of it, it's quite a strong menthol scent but I'm not sure I'd actually want to smell of it myself if you get me? Might be one to throw in my gym bag to try out.

HealGel Face

I think this is a serum of sorts, it's packed with Hyaluronic Acid which I know works brilliantly with my skin so I'm looking forward to giving this a whirl.

Caudalie Vinoperfect Serum

Another serum, this one targets evening out skin tone and brightening complexion which again, I'm happy to try out, I think I have actually used this before but a few years ago!

GreenPeople Intensive Repair Shampoo

I love the GreenPeople brandand have used it before, this is 82% organic and is free from a multitude of nasties such as SLS, Parabens, DEA, TEA and many more, it's even free from Urea which is a bonus!! 

Stila Lip Glaze 

I got the shade Glamour which is a deep Raspberry Pink, it's nice but it's just not a colour I wear so I'll probably give this to a friend, I have used the Stila Lip Glaze's before and loved them.

So, that's everything in the box, nothing I'm not happy with but nothing that I'm overly excited about but you can't win them all! 

How was your BirchBox this month?

Soph x


Today's post is going to be a little bit of a skincare haul from Space NK - I've felt like i've been lacking a little bit with my skincare recently, I think I just got a bit bored with it all so I ended up in a bit of a rut with just using micellar water all the time and my skin was starting to get a bit dull and having a few breakouts so in typical "me" fashion, I decided to buy lots of new cleansers to get me back in the swing of properly cleaning my skin. I also snuck in a re-purchase of the Phytoneutre Clarifying Shampoo which is literally amazing but other than that, it was just cleansers.

This is something I've been debating purchasing for a while, it's the most expensive cleanser in this haul but it really is lovely to use, it's a gel formula but melts into a balmy, oil consistency when you massage it into the skin, it smells heavenly and very spa like with a deep rose scent. I'll do a full review on this soon because this is one of the ones I have been using most out of this little lot and I really am loving it.

I'm really into Nude as a brand at the minute, I picked up a moisturiser set in the Boxing Day sales and it's so, so good. This is a really nice cleanser and I've been using it most mornings for the past few weeks, it's not super foaming but it really cleans skin without drying it or stripping it, it smells like most of the nude products which is kind of a muted vanilla scent - actually, now I'm thinking about it, I think Nude products smell like the head on a Cabbage Patch Kid, anyone else find this?

I'm not sure why I picked this one up but I wanted something to be my Shower Cleanser, I've been using the Origins Checks and Balances which I love but I'm just a bit bored of it so once that finishes, I'm going to replace with this one, I haven't tried this yet but I love Kiehls products so I think this will be a win for me.

I've spoken about this little beauty before - link here - I use it one to two times a week to deep clean my hair, it has eucalyptus in it so it smells amazing and is super good if you have a cold because it really helps clear everything up. It leaves my hair really clean but not stripped so it's super soft. My only issue with this is the metal tube because when it's coming to the end of the product, it gets all battered and it was dripping green goop into my shower everyday but I can learn to live with that, if you're in the market for a clarifying shampoo, I'd really recommend trying this one.

And, that's it - it was definitely a bit of a splurge haul, I think I was obviously feeling quite lavish, I'll be living off toast for the month of January I think! 

Soph x

WISHLIST // Weekly Wishlist #8

Weekly Wishlist #8

So, I think firstly I'll start off with a Happy New Year, I know everyone says it but I can't believe how fast 2014 went, it was literally gone in a flash, I rang the new year in with cups of Pukka Apple & Cinnamon Tea and shots of Covonia so I'm hoping that isn't how the rest of the year plays out. This week's wishlist is a bit of a random one, I think now that Christmasis out of the way, I'm already moving onto Spring in my head, this Poppy dress is beyond pretty.

Keeping it short and sweet for now, but I'm going to be making some changes to the blog over the next month, I'm thinking a bit of a re-vamp and possibly a name change so I'll keep you updated on that.

Hope you all have had an amazing New Year so far and that 2015 brings you everything you wish for.

Soph x