Review: Primark Beauty Stick-on Nails

Hello, hello!

I have a whole host of the “inner workings of my mind” posts lined up that I’ve been writing as late. Today though, I’m writing a good old beauty review just because I can 🙂

Earlier on I had a bored moment and peeled off my Shellac and then bit my weak nails off as well. DISGUSTING! I tried my hardest to get a nail appointment for some extensions to be applied without an electric file and failed. As my last ditch attempt venue happened to be across from Primark, I popped in to check out their ever-expanding beauty range.

Well, I found loads of cool stick-on nail designs and for £1 a pack, they’re dirt cheap compared to all other nail alternatives so I figured it was my duty to give them a go. Other than the fact that my nails are now unusable because they’ll pop off if I so much as open a pack of sweets, I love them! Check these bad boys out, (excuse my dry skin):

The Nails!

The Nails!

image image image

I’ve yet to shower or dress/undress so I’m not sure how they’ll last but I’ll definitely be buying these again for a night out. Far cheaper, quicker and easier than going to a salon, especially if you’re only after 1 night of nail glamour!

Anyone tried any of the rest of the Primark beauty range? X

Budgeting – The £50 Challenge

New Picture (16)As regular readers will know, I’m not the best at budgeting and if you’ve paid particular attention, you’ll have noticed that beyond that I’ve actually racked up a fair bit of debt. Recently this has been bugging me more than usual and I’ve been wondering where all the money is going. Sure, sometimes I just have a lot of social events that each cost a fair few bob but sometimes the money just gets frittered away on small, insignificant purchases.

So, to combat this I’ve looked at my diary for September, seen that it is clear of any expensive social events and decided to challenge myself to living on £50 per week. This £50 is to cover food, social occasions and all shopping whether that be a new top or a new tube of toothpaste. Not only am I hoping to save some money but I’m also hoping that it will force me to use up some of the “stuff” that’s in my house. I’ve got a freezer and cupboards full of food, drawers full of cosmetics, books I’ve never read and so much more that I could be using to entertain myself with. I’ve already spent the money so I may as well cash in and get some ROI from it!

I’ve started this week, with the weekend just gone and I’ll be updating the blog with what I’ve spent and how I’ve spent it across the month. I’m hoping I’ll be able to maintain some sort of social life and stick to my budget 🙂

So far:

£3.85 – Fruit and veg. from the market stall in town
£5.00 – Asda – sweeties and treats
£8.48 – Boots – meal deal plus mouthwash
£15.00 – Pub lunch

I’ve been lucky and had Domino’s pizza bought for me on Saturday night, my parents fed me on Sunday night as I was round there after walking the dog anyway.

Coming up later this week I have a dinner out with a friend so I might have to be extra penny pinching next week to make sure I stay within my limits!

Has anyone else completed this sort of challenge? Any tips for fun things to do that really don’t cost much money? x

Friday Lust

Well it’s that time of the week again when I find it incredibly hard to maintain any self control and not splurge on something new just to celebrate the fact that it’s the weekend!

Anyone who knows me will know that I am partial to a bit of fringe detailing but rarely can you get away with it these days unless you go for a full cowgirl-style get up. However, one place it totally rocks is on your feet and luckily for me, the retailers seem to agree this season. Today’s Friday lust is these beautiful Kurt Geiger boots:

Kurt Geiger Serena, £150

Kurt Geiger Serena, £150

Studs and fringing and a cute cuban heel, what’s not to like??? Oh, right… the price tag is not to like for those of us on a budget. So…

Tesco F&F Fringe Detail Boots, £22

Tesco F&F Fringe Detail Boots, £22

Tesco to the rescue!!! I fully admit that given the choice I would rather be rocking the Kurt Geiger bad boys but if you’re on a budget like I am then you can’t go wrong with a £22 pair from the supermarket 🙂

Happy Friday and happy shopping everybody!!! x

Budget Friendly Skin Miracles – Tea Tree Oil

Happy New Year!!!

I hope you all had a wonderful  night celebrating the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013 last night 🙂

Tea Tree OilIf you are anything like me, your skin is probably not naturally at it’s best at this time of year; the cold outside, heating inside and all the junk food we feed ourselves lead to a whole array of skin-based challenges. One thing that I really struggle with is finding a product strong enough to give my skin the moisture it needs to stop that itchy feeling whilst not clogging up my pores too much or giving me a greasy sheen for the whole day! Well, I have found my miracle product at last and it’s not expensive, it’s not full of chemicals and it’s not difficult to use. It’s tea tree oil, pure tea tree oil!

The oil is a strong moisturiser whilst the astringent properties of tea tree oil help to keep my pores in shape at the same time. You don’t need to use the exact product I have shown in the picture, that just happens to be the brand that mine is. Tea tree oil is available in most beauty shops, certainly mine came from Boots and it only cost a few £s.

Now the product says that you shouldn’t apply it neat to the skin and it should be diluted but I’ve ignored that. I’m not advising you to ignore it too, simply saying that so far, this has worked for me. I cleanse as normal and then use a cotton wool ball to smooth the oil over my skin before bed. In the morning I just use my usual moisturiser after cleansing.

So there it is, a budget-friendly skin solution to help you through the tough month that is January! Wishing you all the best for your back to work week, hopefully you have something fabulous lined up for next weekend to get you through! x

Review Maybelline Dream Nude Airfoam Foundation

Unfortunately I am not one of those lucky people blessed with flawless skin, (unlike my sister…argh!) and so I’m always on the lookout for a foundation with great coverage which feels nice and light on my skin.

I usually use Clinique’s Repairwear Anti-Ageing Makeup on the majority of my face and then Clinique’s Superbalanced Makeup on my forehead. My forehead can sometimes get quite dry so I have to wear a lighter foundation; I also find that thick foundations can cling around my eyebrows and hairline which is never a good look! This combination works well and covers me nicely from morning until evening and reflects light well in photos so I look like a porcelain doll 🙂

However, the foundation is pretty thick and I would like something budget friendly that’s a bit lighter, especially for the Summer. So, when I was in Boots on Saturday and I spotted the new Maybelline Dream Airfoam range on offer for just under £7 each, I thought I’d give it a bash. Being the English rose that I am, I went for the lightest shade, Ivory which actually isn’t that pale…I can only just get away with it!

I have to say this is not like any foundation I have ever used before. First lesson is that you MUST shake it lots before you depress the pump. If you don’t, you get unpigmented foam which is no good to man nor beast. Secondly, pressing the pump with the right pressure is an art, one that I have yet to master! It’s just like hair mousse so it grows in your hand and then starts fizzing away to nothing so if you take too much, it will just be wasted. Thirdly, application is messy. You have to pump it into your hand and then use the fingers of your other hand to apply. This is a whole extra hand’s worth of mess than I would normally have when applying foundation.

Yesterday was the first day that I wore the foundation and I have to say I wasn’t hugely impressed. Where my skin really needs coverage is my nose and chin and I had to use two layers of foundation on those areas to feel confident enough to leave the house. It also did nothing for the dark circles under my eyes, that job was left entirely to my concealer. Then to top it off, I looked dirty. I don’t think the colour was too dark, (not that there is a lighter shade) I just don’t think it reflects the light in the way that my Clinique foundations do. However, I was determined to give it a proper test so off I went to work with it…

Around 5pm when I popped to the ladies’, I noticed in the mirror that suddenly I was looking pretty minging. The foundation had clumped onto areas of slightly dry skin which meant I had a patch on my forehead and lines down the sides of my nose. Where it hadn’t clumped, it had pretty much slid off in the heat of the office. Not impressed! Sorry I have no pictures of any of this, none of my photo-taking devices are good enough to pick up this level of detail!

Essentially, if you have perfect skin and don’t need a foundation, this might work for you. Though in that instance, I would recommend a tinted moisturiser instead. If your skin is uneven in tone, has large pores, is dry or oily in any way, shape or form, I would avoid this. It’s messy to apply and the results just aren’t worth effort; spend a bit more and hop on over to the Clinique counter, they’ll be able to help you there. x

Where to Eat (Budget Friendly) – Reading

I’m going to make a confession now…I am one of those people who always wants to go somewhere different and try something new but when it comes to my home town I seem to be a creature of habit.

For months, probably years, every time I have walked up a certain end of town, (usually to the theatre) I have wondered what the Thai restaurant, Thai 9 is actually like. Yet I have done nothing about it. Last Friday that changed when I was invited out for a friend of the other half’s, girlfriend’s b’day. (Yes, essentially I was invited just because they’re nice people, not because they know me!)

As you can see from the website, it’s not necessarily the classiest place and when in a large group, your table will be split and the food will come out at strange times but it was bloomin’ good value. We went for the all you can eat option which could have included sushi had anyone wanted it and it was only around £15 a head; drinks weren’t that pricey either.

The food was a bit greasy but then what would you expect for the money? There was a great selection on the menu and as far as I am aware, everything tasted good and nobody had any sour after effects.

This is a great little restaurant for cheap eats, especially for a group night out so I highly recommend giving it a bash when you’re on a budget. Be sure to book though as it’s quite small! The only thing to be wary of is that whilst it may be funny to watch some of the less productive members of society as they go past the window, you might not want to leave on your own late at night.

I’m heading to Oxford for Tapas this weekend so expect another foodie review soon! x

Spring Has Sprung!

What a glorious weekend we just had here in the UK! It has well and truly got me in the mood for Spring and all of the bright colours and sunshine that come with it.

On Saturday the bf and I helped some friends out at an exhibition at the ExCel in London and as we were practically on its doorstep, I decided that would be a good time to finally get round to visiting the Stratford City Westfield.

We were really lucky actually, we went in the afternoon and it wasn’t too busy, had a great mooch around and then left a little bit poorer and had some dinner at Wahaca. One of the reasons I left a little bit poorer is this fabulous jacket:

Check out the blooms on this bad boy!

This little number is one of Primark’s latest limited collection (which means almost nobody in Reading will have it) and only set me back in the region of £25. I love it! The bf looked a little bit shocked when I honed straight in on it and said I must have it but really and truly, I had to have it! Bold floral prints are one of the key trends for S/S and this is me down to a tee. Love, love, love!

As soon as I wear it, I’ll pop another post up and you can make your minds up then…I fear it’s going to be a bit like Marmite! x

Best Gift for Her for Under a Fiver

As we all know, Christmas can be very challenging on the wallet and even more challenging when the wallet is further constricted by Secret Santa spending limits, etc. When friends are involved, you want to get them something worth having but also want it to look like a nice gift. Well, well, well – have I got the best gift for you!

At the moment the Soap & Glory range at Boots is on 3 for 2 (think Hand Food if you are struggling to place this). Not only that, but you also get a free gift bag. So, you can buy 3 miniature products for under £5 and have the bag included. Here’s a few examples of how broad the range is:

The most expensive product in this picture is £2.50 so get yourself down to Boots and treat yourself or a friend to some fab smelling pampering goodness. I challenge you to find a better present under £5! x

The Best of The Rest Part 2

Wowsers, it feels like forever since I wrote the post about Promod last week. The reason its taken me so long to follow up is that I have been away in the New Forest for the bf’s birthday…but more about that tomorrow.

Today, I am going to introduce you to the other little gems I found when I was mooching around online last week. I’m going to start with this absolutely bargainous little playsuit I found on the Miss Rebel website.  I found it in their clearance sale, reduced from £19.99 to just £9.99 and I’m thinking it will look great this winter with some tights, biker boots (perhaps the Tesco ones) and a leather jacket. It’s still available, along with some other great finds as well 🙂

If you’re on quite a tight budget like many of us are, then you might not be able to afford a real leather jacket to go with this look. My suggestions are: a.) try eBay, you’d be surprised what bargains you can find if you look hard enough and b.) try a faux leather little number such as this one:

This little beaut has just the right attitude and all for only £19.49 from Pink Heart. 

If you do get on the leather (or faux leather) bandwagon, a multitude of awesome dress / jacket combinations will open up to you for this autumn / winter fun time. You’ll probably have loads already in your wardrobe that can be re-vamped this way but if you’re still looking for something new, check out this maxi dress from Miss Lure:

I love it, although it’s just £24.00, I think it has a real All Saints look to it and we all know All Saints dresses cost a lot more than £24.00!

So for now, that is the best of the rest from me but I will continue my hunt. What I really want to find is any independent stores (physical or virtual) and fresh designers. I’ll get back to you on this as and when I find them. If you have any suggestions, feel free to let me know and I’ll check them out 🙂

Happy Sunday!