Sunday, 28 February 2016

February - A Sunday Snapshot

Can you believe it? February is almost over! Another month over in a blink on an eye, although I'm not looking forward to the extra working day this month- thank's leap year! I always find February a hard month- it's soo cold, Christmas is a distant memory and the excuses not the find time to go to the gym are running out, however on reflection its actually been a pretty good month. Here's why:
1. Valentine's Day
Who doesn't like a reason to treat themselves to some lovely LUSH products?  Valentine's Day is the perfect excuse- I just had to have this amazing heart box full of LUSH as soon as I saw it, you can read about it here. I also find Valentine's Day to be the perfect excuse to indulge in my favourite treats- especially Krispy Kreme's heart shaped donuts, I really did get my fill of Heart Shaped Foods.
2. National Nutella Day
Whoever made this holiday I would like to give you a big chocolately kiss! However one day isn't enough so I made February my Nutella month! First I indulged in some seriously chocolately Nutella pancakes then I whipped up a batch of Super Simple Nutella Cupcakes.  They were sooo good and disappeared within minutes. If you would like to make some you can find the recipe here.
3. Birchbox
My second Birchbox turned up and I was totally smitten with the beautiful brush inside, you can Click Here to find out what my Birchbox contained. This month I also subscribed to Love Me Beauty, you can find out what I thought about it by clicking this Link. I managed to find a deal on Groupon for both of these beauties, make sure you find it if you are thinking of subscribing!
4.  Cupcakes
How cute is this mini oreo cupcake? I went for a little shop at Bluewater and was handed one from Lola's Cupcakes for free! It was delicious and so adorable. I love Lola's Cupcakes,  my absolute favourite is there chocolate and salted caramel cupcake- IT'S AMAZING!
5.Nail Art
I love getting my nails done and my nail artist Kayley is the best! This month I opted for a patchwork design studded with hearts.
6. Jurassic Coast
We had a fantastic time down in Dorset visiting the Jurassic Coast, we donned our wellys and participated in a spot of fossil hunting - I can't believe we actually found some!  We had such a lovely time, it's a beautiful part of the world and the village around it was stunning. Blog coming soon!
7. Cocktails
We had a few days away and visited a great Thai Tapas restaurant. The food was lovely and the cocktails were epic!
8. Dad's Army
I have childhood memories of watching Dad's Army with my Dad every Sunday so I was really excited when they realised a Movie based on it. I took my Mum and Dad along to watch, followed by a Toby Carvery. Perfect!
9. The Chocolate Hotel
We had the best time at the Chocolate Hotel in Bournemouth, I cannot wait to share the experience with you on my blog in the next few days. Here's a photo of the chocolate fountain we found in our room upon arrival- Amazing!
How was your February been? What have been your highlight? I would love to know!
Leave me a message below! Love Chlo XxX  


Monday, 22 February 2016

Is the Love me Beauty Box deal really worth it?

The good, the bad (the just ok) and the down right ugly.

I am a bit of a groupon junkie and just couldn't resist snapping up a deal to try the Love me Beauty Box, mine arrived today and here's the good, the bad and the ugly of this new beauty box.

ok, lets start with the good. First who could resist this Groupon deal for 6 beauty boxes for only £28? that works out to under £5 a box.  Also you get credits which means you can choose exactly what does into your box- no more unwanted perfume samples!
There's quite a good range of items and products such as make up, nail varnish,  jewellery, hair treatments and body and skin treatments.

The credits don't stretch very far, in fact my 60 credits only allowed me to get three products! I plumped for an eye brow pencil, an eye balm primer and a clarifying clay mask all costing me 20 credits each, there were a few 10 credit items- but who wants a hair band?

The products were just ok. The Cailyn brow pencil is a perfect example of this boxes lacklustre performance, the colour was a great match and the brush very useful but without any setting agent or wax to offer control, my badly behaved brows were back to their unruly selves in no time at all.

The Cailyn eye primer did what it said on the tin, it held my eye shadow in place and eliminated creases, however the overall pale beigeyness (yes I did just make that word up) isn't very exciting.

 Malin + Goetz clarifying clay mask is an exfoliating clay mask which helps control shine and blemishes. I really liked this product however this sample size is rather on the small side.

Picture the scene, you are patiently waiting for your new beauty box to arrive, when the postman finally delivers you rip open the envelope and excitedly open the lid only to find 3 measly little items rattling around in a big box. You would feel disappointed right? That's how I felt.  Love me beauty claims that each and every box is worth £45 plus, and while it may indeed be worth that it doesn't feel like it is worth that.
Also the postage and packaging always seems to bump up the price a bit.

AAAnd finally the free gift? Well it was a discount on a Hellofresh food box!

Lets hope I find next weeks Love Me Beauty Box more inspiring!

Do you subscribe to a beauty box? What did you get in your box this month?
I would love to know, love Chlo XxX

Thursday, 18 February 2016

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Monday, 15 February 2016

Valentine's Day 2016

I have never been a fan of PDA's (Public Displays of Affection) to be honest they have always made me feel a little uncomfortable. Valentine's Day has always been the biggest days for PDA's - facebook is rife with photos of Michael Kors watches, fancy meals and huge bouquets of flowers. However seeing as this was our first Valentine's Day as a married couple ( even saying that makes me feel old) we thought we would do something to mark the day- plus I love seeing how other people celebrate things (I'm a sucker of a themed item- whether it's a heart shaped chocolate or a Christmas tree shaped crumpet.)

So here's how we celebrated the little known holiday 'heart shaped everything day.'

Before heading to the gym I thought I'd better tackle breakfast, I was met with this super cute gnome mug and some cute heart shaped toast. Nom nom nom. I thought the gym would be empty, how wrong was I? it was rammed! It seemed like everyone had the same idea.

 After the gym I settled down to watch the last few episode of Scream Queen whilst Matt painted our kitchen( now that's true love) then I headed to Sainsbury's to pick up some treats for our dinner.

How cute is the flower display in Sainsbury's?!?

 After spending an hour or so perusing the shelves I left with my bags for life full of goodies.
I decided to cook scallops with bacon and rocket to start, followed by fillet streak, dauphinoise potatoes and stuffed mushrooms and finally melt in the middle chocolate pudding, strawberries and cream ice cream and fresh strawberries. (This is why I need to go to the gym more often!)

After polishing off our huge feast we exchanged pressies, Matt gave me some beautiful white roses, LUSH ? gift box (I seriously cannot wait to try Prince Charming Shower Cream) and some strawberries and cream Lindors (soo good!) I got Matt a love heart tin (full of love heart sweets) and a box of Krispy Kremes.  Then Matt glossed the kitchen skirting board while I watched Frist Dates: Valentines special and they say romance is dead!

How did you spend your Valentine's (Heart shaped everything) Day?
I would love to know!
Love Chlo XxX


Saturday, 13 February 2016

Super Simple Nutella Valentines cupcakes

With Valentine’s Day on the horizon and a gigantic jar of Nutella sitting in my cupboard I thought what better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than to whip up some super easy Valentine's Day Nutella cupcakes?

I'm not a great cook but I followed this simple (only 3 ingredients) recipe and was rewarded with chocolately, gooey, delicious cupcakes. Here's the recipe if you would also like some gooey, chocolate deliciousness in your life.

For the cake
  1. 150g nutella
  2. 2 eggs
  3. 60g self-raising flour (I also added a bit of coco powder to my flour for an extra hit of chocolate)
For the icing (frosting)
1. 75g unsalted butter or margarine ( I used butter)
2. 250g of icing sugar
3. 4 large tbsp of Nutella

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Mix the Nutella, egg and flour till thoroughly combined. Divide between 8 cupcake cases - they should be about two-thirds full.
  3. Bake for around 15 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  4. Cool on a wire rack.
  5. Whilst the cakes are cooling cream butter and icing sugar  together and then use an electric mixer to mix the Nutella in – this should hopefully make the icing light and fluffy.
  6. When the cakes have cooled add a generous amount of icing and sprinkle with sugar hearts
  7. Stick on your favourite romcom and tuck in.

I also found this cute Ferris Wheel at Wilko for only £10, the best part is as you choose a cupcake from the stand the rest move round- it's soo much fun!

Have you made anything for Valentine's Day? What's your favourite way to eat Nutella?
I would love to know!
Love Chlo XxX


Monday, 8 February 2016

Birchbox February - Shine bright like a diamond

I was excited to see my February Birchbox arrive this morning, I was expecting the theme for this month to be hearts and flowers, however Birchbox has gone for 'Shine Bright like a Diamond' (sadly there was no diamond in my box.) I thought I would start with my favourite products from this months Birchbox and work my way down to my least desired products.
My winner by far was this stunning Tapered Powered Brush. - isn't it amazing?
I love love love this gorgeous tampered Powder brush by Spectrum Collections (Full size 7.99)
It's so beautiful, the brush is so soft and reminds me of unicorn hair ( I think it's something to do with the colours) it's perfect for shimmery highlighters and bronzers thanks to the shaped top and super soft tapered bristles. I am putting the full set onto my wish list.

Next up is the One and Done Shadow Stick by LOC (Full size RRP £8)
There were two different colours up for grabs, I was sent Champagne Problems- a lovely shimmery silvery bronze. This product is exclusive to birchwood and super easy to apply, you simply apply all over your lids then blend with fingertips for a soft, smokey look. I love the fact that you can also use this Shadow stick as a liner and it promises up to 11 hours of creaseless, waterproof colour!
I love blushers so was ecstatic to find Frat Boy Blush/shadow by the Balm (sample size RRP £15.50)
The colour is perfect and offers my pale winter cheeks a nice rosy glow. The colour is shimmery but subtle so would complement all complexions. I just wish the same was bigger- its SO tiny! I think I will perhaps get 3 uses out of it (if I'm lucky)

I also received a rather sizeable pot of Body Butter in Patagonia by Ayres (sample size. RRP 19.50)
The plant  based formula boasts shea butter, vitamin E and antioxidants to help soften and hydrate. Ayres have also added jasmine, lavender and ylang-ylang to create a 'serene scent' (birchboxes words) however I sadly think it smells a bit like medicine, so I don't think I will be ordering again.
Next up is the Eslor firming Collagen Day Cream it claims to contain hydrolysed marine collagen which apparently locks in moisture, restores elasticity and boosts radiance. I haven't noticed much of a difference but perhaps after a few uses you notice the benefit- sadly I don't think I will see this as the sample is so small. The pot looks quite chunky however I was disappointed to open to list to find the sample inside was teeny. On the plush side it does smell great!
My final product was Style De Paris Eau de Parfum by Catherine Malandrino. (Sample Size RRP £50)I have to admit I was pretty  disappointed to receive this perfume sample as its so easy to pick up free perfume samples from the beauty counters, also I am very fussy with my perfume and only really wear Chanel or Jo Malone. Style De Paris is quite fruity with essence of mandarin, red grapefruit and pear - I have to admit it does smell quite pleasant ( a bit like a cocktail)

That's my review of this months Birchbox, have you tried any of these products? What did you receive in your beauty box this month?

Love Chlo XxX



The Super Birchbox Beauty Deal


Recently my Instagram has been flooded with magnificent looking beauty boxes, they all looked so tempting but I just couldn't decide which to choose and if they were worth the monthly investment. Luckily Groupon helped me make my mind up by offering a six month subscription to Birchbox for £29.95 how could I refuse?

As I only stumbled across the deal towards the end of January my official 'January Birchbox' didn't arrive until February. The  box itself is beautiful, it's in collaboration with pinterest and covered with inspiring pictures and quotes, inside I found five beautifully illustrated postcards.
My beauty products where housed in a handy little hessian bag. Here's what I found inside;

1. Benefit They're Real Tinted Primer - Sample size. Full size RRP £18.50
I am a big fan of all things Benefit so I was thrilled to find this tinted primer in my box, I usually wear lash extensions but as I am giving my lashes a month off  this is the prefect product for me right now. The tinted primer is a new addition to the Benefit range so I haven't tried it before, it promises to tint, define and prime lashes for a natural look or to team up with They're real Mascara for a sky scraper effect. When trying this product I found it  really separated and lengthened my lashes and could be worn on its own, however when pairing it up with my favourite mascara it had a much more dramatic look- perfect for evenings.  It's making my transition from extensions to natural lashes much easier to handle.

2.Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner in black - Full size RRP £12
The Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner promises big and bold dramatic eyes. I must admit I  was a bit worried about trying this product, the tip reminded me of a sharpie and on first inspection accidently drew a huge thick black line all over my eye! However after further practice I realised that the nip can be used for both thin and thick lines and is actually quite easy to use. The colour is a very striking black and perfect for the winged look. This eyeliner is great for a night out as its bold, long lasting and smudge-proof.


3. Beauty Protector: Protect and detangle -Sample size. RRP £14
This is an exclusive to Birchbox and great for my wild, unruly hair. It smells absolutely gorgeous and helps to condition, detangle and minimise frizz- perfect! This is another great product choice from Birchbox, after washing my hair I simply spray a little onto my damp hair then comb through. I think I might be investing in another bottle of this when it runs out.

4. Absolution L'eau Soir et Matin - Sample size. RRP £27
This cleansing water from Absolution smells lovely, it has hazelnut oil and aloe vera which help soothe and hydrate tired skin. I have found this product did a great job of removing stubborn make up and left my skin feeling soft and refreshed. I am not sure if this will take a place in my day to day beauty routine as I adore my current Decleor toner (you can read about it here.)

5.Rituals T'ai Chi Foaming Shower Gel- sample size. PPR £8.50 
My final beauty product was from one of my favourite beauty places, Rituals. I always think their products smell amazing, and this one was no exception. It has an uplifting and invigorating scent and left my skin feeling soft and refreshed, luckily a little goes a long way and the gel turns into a foam on contact, its really luxurious and provides a lovely pampering treat.
Beauty bonus Compact Mirror RRP £4
I also received a little beauty bonus of a compact mirror, although most of my makeup products already come with a mirror its always handy to have an extra mirror to pop in my bag.
I was really pleased with the products I was sent in my Birchbox and I am already looking forward to my next box arriving and the Groupon deal means each box is only £5 - what a deal!
Do you have any beauty box subscriptions? what did you receive in yours? I would love to know!
Leave me a message below, Love Chlo XxX


Sunday, 7 February 2016

Opening the lid on the Lots of Love Box by LUSH

After missing out in the LUSH sale I thought I would give myself a little huge treat and splash out on the LUSH "Lots of Love" box. I was so excited when out postman delivered this giant LUSH box, inside this I found....


...another box! Here's what I found inside the heart shaped box.

The smell was amazing, it hit me as soon as I opened the lid. The LUSH Lots of Love Valentine's Gift Box is priced at £27.95 and contains 6 fab valentines inspired bath bombs/ bubble bars. LUSH call their products 'seductively soothing' and perfect for preparing for a date or sharing a bath. According to LUSH "if there was ever a good reason to get naked, it's right here in this box." (Saucy!)

1. Lover Lamp
I love the name of this bath bomb and it smells great too, LUSH describes it as a heavenly moisturising bath bomb with Fair Trade organic coco butter hearts, Brazilian orange oil and Fair Trade absolute (is it just me or does this sound a bit like an awesome vodka based cocktail?)
I really love the fact its made from Fair Trade products and those organic coco butter hearts did a great job of making my skin feel moisturised and smooth. Just be careful when getting out of the bath as they also made everything a bit slippery.
2. Sex Bomb
Does the name of this bath bomb remind anyone else of that Tom Jones song? Once again LUSH have created an amazingly fragrant bath bomb, it has a heavenly blend of jasmine, ylang ylang and clary sage which help to ease away stress and anxiety.
3.A French Kiss
Bubble bars are my one of favourite LUSH products, I just love how bubbly they turn each bath and this one is no exception. It has a delicious lavender scent and evokes memories of Paris. I also adore the shape which reminds me of Hersey Kisses ( I love those!) This bubble bath contains fresh rosemary, lavender and extra virgin coconut oil and I left my bath feeling completely relaxed and calm.

4.Rose Jam
Described as a Bubbleroon, it almost makes me want to take a bite. I completely missed out on stocking up on Rose Jam during December so I was thrilled to see it was included in the Lots of Love box. The smell is sweet, up-lifting and floral, it combines lemon, rose and geranium oil to create a truly mood enhancing fragrance. So it smells fab, looks fab and creates a mountain of bubbles- what more could you ask for?

5.Unicorn Bar
It's soooo shimmery! I adore anything related to unicorns and this bubble bar is truly a thing of beauty. Its appearance is magical, combining the perfect amount of rainbow with pearlescent shimmer and its smell is intoxicating, with lavender and neroli oil- apparently these are meant to help increase serotonin levels in the brain to make us feel content, cheery and generally in more happy state of mind! This bubble bar  is truly magical!

6.Tisty Tosty
The Tisty Tosty Bath Bomb has been one of my favourites for many years, I just love everything about it from the smell to the army of rosebuds and petals which spring from it. LUSH describe their Tissty Tosty Bath Bomb as being an enchanting love potion based on a medieval love potion! It is the perfect concoction of rose absolute, precious orris root and rosebuds.

Have you used any of these LUSH products before? What's your favourite LUSH product? What do you have planned for Valentine's Day? I would love to know!
Love Chlo XxX

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Mrs Sailsbury's Famous Tea rooms and Saturday Shopping at Bright's path.

In need of a little winter pick me up my friend and I decided to visit Mrs Sailsbury's Famous Tea room for a sugar hit. I had already heard a lot of good things about Mrs Sailsbury's so I had high expectations. Mrs Sailsbury's is located in Maldon Highstreet down a little side turning (or mews lane as one shop refers to it)  called Bright's path. Bright's path really is a hidden treasure, it's wonderful- full of quirky boutiques shops and obviously Mrs Sailsbury's fabulous tearooms. I cannot put across in words how charming and beautiful Bright's path is, the shops are all painted in muted purples and greys, the pavement is cobbled and the old fashioned posters make you feel like you have stepped into another era. There is a beautiful preloved bridal shop, a sweet shop in an old fashioned beach hut and even a phonebox offering scarves and Paddington Bear plushes.

The boutique shops are exquisite, I particularly loved the home interior boutiques Grey Rufffle  and Poppy and Finn (and may or may not have purchased a rather large wall clock for my kitchen) 

Mrs Sailsbury's is housed in a beautiful oldy worldy building with low ceilings and exposed beams. They offer outside seating  complete with blankets and gingerbread hot water bottles.  

Inside is cosy and intimate, with a friendly relaxed atmosphere.

The food was delicious, first up were the sandwiches, the bread was soft and the fillings generous. my favourite was the brie, cranberry and walnut sandwich on granary bread.
Next I tried the fruit scone with clotted cream and jam- it was huge!

The scone was closely followed by Mrs Salisbury's chocolately, chewy, scrumptious brownie and her equally scrummy pistachio and berry pavlova. Then came the raspberry and prosecco jelly topped with cream, the ultimate adult jelly.

Finally I polished off my tea with the help of Mrs Sailsbury's chocolate dipped Viennese biscuit.
We had a fantastic time at Mrs Sailsbury's famous Tea rooms, the service was friendly, the setting was so pretty, the food was really scrummy and it was great value for money. I would really recommend a visit to Mrs Sailsbury's Famous Tea Room.

One my way to Mrs Sailsbury's I spotted this greengrocers, how cute is there window display?

Do you have any recommend places for afternoon tea? Have you ever been to Mrs Sailsbury's ? I love to know, leave me a comment below,
Love Chlo XxX

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