05.05 - Went for a lunchtime Benefit Brow Wax to get my free gimme brow and raise some money for Look Good Feel Better and Refuge. I wish Benefit hadn't changed the packaging of gimme brow and Brow Zings though - I prefer them as they are!

08.05 - The first proper summer's day of the year! Spent it sunbathing in Preston Park rock gardens.

14.05 - Took my Nanna for a Boho Gelato on the pier, despite it being freezing! She wanted to see the sea! I had 'Nutellesque' and it was gooooood.

15.05 - Went for a cheeky cocktail at the Speigeltent. I love Brighton when the Fringe and Festival are on!

22.05 - I love the Make Up Forever Excessive Lash Mascara! It fans, lengthens and separates lashes and keeps them in place ALL day. 

25.05 - Bought this amazing pineapple t-shirt from Oasis! You just can't be sad when you have gold pineapples on your t-shirt!

28.05 - My favourite post-workout smoothie: Vanilla Protein World Slender Blend, mango, raspberry, almond milk and almond butter. Mmmm...

29.05 - Trying out Brighton's new Franco Manco sourdough pizzeria, c/o Rosie Posie's Puddings & Pies twitter competition that I won! It's absolutely incredible, the best pizza I've ever tried by far!

30.05 - The night before starting a four day juice cleanse! Eek! Stay tuned to the blog to find out how I got on!

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Real life instagram filters?

Ah Instagram, and their wonderful filters that smooth, perfect and illuminate our skin, and transform even the most unflattering of pictures into model shots... wouldn't it be great if you could apply Lark, Juno or Mayfair to your face in real life every morning?  The Body Shop's new trio of Instaglow CC creams* aim to do just that. 

Available in three shades, Bright Glow for fair skin, Peachy Glow for fair/medium skin and Warm Glow for dark skin, the CC creams minimise the appearance of pores, illuminate the complexion, and provide hydration and sun protection (SPF20). They do give a hint of coverage, but I mean a hint. I like a very light coverage with my foundation anyway, but used alone the Instaglow creams aren't enough, even for me. The Body Shop suggest that these work well as a primer, underneath your foundation, but I've preferred mixing them with mine. Mixed with my Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Gel, the creams just add a light-reflecting (not shimmery!) 'filter-like' glow, tinted with either bright, peachy or warm light. 

These aren't like foundations, where you have to find an exact shade match; the shades are a little more universal, and you can pick and choose which one to use for the type of effect you're going for that day - just as you would pick different Instagram filters. 

For my light skin,  I've been able to get away with using the Bright Glow and the Peachy Glow all over my face; bright for a fresh and illuminated finish, and Peachy for a warmer, 'candlelit' glow. I tried using Warm Glow as a bronzer, but it was just too dark for me. 

However the shades will work differently with different complexions. I think medium/olive skin tones would be able to get away with using all three shades for highlight, foundation and contour. 

I'd describe these kind of like a liquid version of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders - different shaded 'filters' to provide a subtle, lit-from-within glow in a tint that suits the particular vibe you're going for. 

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The Products You Need This Summer

Well a few weeks ago we had a summer's day. Hopefully that's not all we're getting this year, as I've already stocked up on two pairs of sunglasses and a beauty haul ready for those sunny days. Here are the products I'm rating for summer (so far...)

1. O&M Surf Bomb

Salt spray is a summer time necessity, and I'm in love with Original & Mineral's Surf Bomb; it beats both bumble & bumble's surf spray and surf infusion by a mile. I guess nobody can do surfer hair better than the Australians! Applied to wet hair, it subtly enhances the hair's natural wave, and adds sexy texture and movement without a matte finish or any 'crunch'. For full-on mermaid waves, I sleep with my hair in french plaits, and then spritz in the Surf Bomb in the morning to add extra definition and hold.

£19 from Space NK

2. Urban Decay Beached Bronzer

Blue skies and palm trees on the outside, and a buttery soft bronzer on the inside; this little compact is possibly the cutest summer launch of 2016. The shade sun-kissed gives a subtle warm glow that looks totally natural, thanks to the matte finish, and the silky, finely-milled powder blends beautifully into the skin.

£20 from Debenhams

3. Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration Sunscreen

Hawaiian Tropic win at sun cream every time. That tropical fragrance is just summer encapsulated, isn't it? Their new 'air soft' formula is lightweight and non-greasy, absorbing into the skin quickly to avoid any sticky/sandy situations! As well as providing you with whatever level of sun protection you need (it comes in SPF 15, 30 or 50), the cream also contains silk proteins that leave the skin silky soft. 

4. Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist

A hydrating facial mist is a godsend in a heatwave, especially when it smells as delicious as this one from Jurlique. I love to use it throughout the day to refresh and hydrate my skin, and take a little moment of luxury. 8,000 rose petals go in to each bottle of Jurlique's Rosewater Balancing Mist (which are hand picked from Jurlique's farm in the Adelaide Hills of Australia), and provide the skin with a wealth of soothing, softening benefits.
£18 from LookFantastic

5. Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue

I go on about this all the time, I know, but it needed to be mentioned in this post as it's practically made for the summer months; with a built in SPF 30, a lightweight gel texture, and a formula packed with nourishing, hydrating ingredients. Coverage-wise, it's somewhere in-between a tinted moisturiser and a foundation, giving a sheer cover and a dewy glow.
£26 from BareMinerals

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Haircare for hard water

Living on the South coast of England, we have 'hard water', meaning it has a higher mineral content than water in other parts of the country. Water that's rich in minerals might sound like we have a spa treatment freely available on tap, but unfortunately not; the minerals in hard water create a barrier that prevents moisture from entering the hair, resulting in dry, dull and tangly hair.

But those living in soft water areas (the North, Scotland, Cornwall) don't get off scot-free either. Soft water affects the hair in a different way, often leaving it looking limp and greasy.

Thankfully, some brainiac biochemists have created Area H2o; a range of haircare products that work with the different water types, combatting the effects that mineral deposits have on the hair.

I've been testing out the shampoo* and conditioner* for hard water, and for coloured hair in particular. Usually my hair is super frizzy, dry and dull when I first wash and dry it. I always need to add some kind of serum to give it some shine and tame the frizz. But the first time I washed my hair with Area H2o, I couldn't get over how sleek and shiny my locks were, just after a rough dry. Now, I'll be honest - Area H2o is not the most glamorous or luxurious looking product in the world, it's a bit too 'scientific' for me, and it's not something I'd be drawn to on the shelf. But the results blew me away; it really does work.

Does your hair suffer due to your local water type?

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5 bad beauty habits that I'm totally guilty of

As a beauty blogger, people sometimes think I must do everything by the book. But we're ALL guilty of committing beauty crimes; the lazy ones, the gross ones and the downright weird ones...

1. Biting/peeling off my nail varnish

I've started doing this quite recently and I don't know why, but there's something so satisfying when you peel off a whole nail in one go! And once I've done one, I can't stop until I've taken it all off. Then I end up with little colourful piles of nail varnish on my desk/arm of the sofa. Gross. 

2. Wearing make-up to the gym 

I don't put make-up on to go to the gym, but on the days where I go straight from work, I always end up sweating out in a full face of make up. You'd think I'd learn my lesson when I bumped into an ex with mascara down my cheeks looking like the the fifth member of KISS.

3. Neglecting my neck and décolletage 

I'm totally going to end up with a baby face and a turkey neck if I don't start remembering to include my neck and décolletage in my skincare routine!

4. Not washing my make-up brushes enough

Oh it's just such a chore, isn't it?! As if we don't have enough to do...I probably wash my brushes once a month.... Ok, once every two months. But I use mainly powder products, so it's not tooooo bad, right?

5. Forgetting heat protection all too often

To be honest, I think it's just that I haven't found a product that I like. Heat protection hair products I've tried in the past have left my hair sticky/a nasty smell/crunchy - not that that's a valid excuse. Any recommendations for a heat protection spray I'll actually want to use?

What bad beauty habits are you guilty of?

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Go To Everyday Make Up

My base products remain the same pretty much all year round (Complexion Rescue Gel and Mineral Veil, both by Bare Minerals which are amazing and you can read all about here) but I like to switch up the rest of my make-up bag every month or so. Recently I've been loving these products for a bright and bronzed go-to look... 

On my Face... 

I have the Urban Decay Beached Bronzer in Sun-Kissed (the lighter shade of the two available) which gives me just a subtle hint of colour. It's a matte finish, providing a natural-looking healthy glow. Then, to make my cheeks pop just a little bit, I add a little Benefit Dandelion blush. It's a sweet and subtle ballerina pink shade with a hint of shimmer that brightens the complexion. I actually like to use the square Benefit Box O' Powder brush for softly contouring the bronzer into the hollow of my cheeks, and then use a big fluffy blush brush by Real Techniques for bronzing my forehead and neck, and for my blush.

For the brows...

With this look, I've been favouring a more natural brow, and swapped my Brow-Zings for Benefit's Gimme BrowThe volumising fibres in the tinted gel thicken the brows and fill in any sparse patches, while the gel tames any unruly hairs and adds a natural tint. While I love Benefit's Brow-Zings for a dramatic look, it can look a little 'too' perfect and harsh. Gimme Brow gives more of a 'fluffy' natural looking but groomed brow.

On the eyes...

Under the eyes, I've been using Bare Minerals BareSkin brightening concealer which features mineral optics to reflect the light and combat dark circles, along with the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil* in the pearlised skin-coloured shade 'Yogurt'. I smudge this along my lower-lash line and inner corner of the eye to create that illuminated, wide-awake look. Usually I'll use a combination of cream/light brown shadows from my Laura Mercier palette on my eyelids, with a winged liner on top (using one of these eyeliners). I finish off my eyes with this new Excessive Lash Mascara* by Make Up For Ever. I received this at the Debenhams Beauty Press Show; it's my first try of Make Up For Ever and I'm seriously impressed. It features a double-fibre brush that fans out lashes for an eye-opening effect, with 'hairspray technology' to keep them from drooping throughout the day. The slim brush is great for neatly coating the bottom lashes and getting into the corner of the eyes, and the formula is weightless, smudge-proof and flake-free. Perfect!

And the lips...

To polish off the look, a simple slick of Clarins Instant Light Comfort Lip Oil in Honey. I'm not usually a lip gloss lover, but I'm in love with the Clarins Lip Oil - It adds a pretty shine to the lips, and feels wonderful to wear and apply - it's definitely an addictive product! 

What are your go to products at the moment?

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New skincare additions for spring and summer

In an effort to spring clean my skincare routine, I had a big clear out of all those half-used, unloved products and restocked with some fresh new additions for Spring and Summer (coincidentally with a cheerful colour scheme, it seems).  

In creating a simpler, streamlined skincare routine, I decided to stick to a theme of refreshing and glow-enhancing products, and am already reaping the benefits of a carefully selected product line-up. Rather than my old mish-mash of random products competing against each other, these products work together in harmony, resulting in a healthy, bright complexion.

Pixi Glow Tonic

I know there have been endless blogger reviews of this stuff, so I was a little dubious about boring you all with yet another one, but it really is so good that it didn't feel right to not sing it's praises on my blog.

The Pixi Glow Tonic contains 5% Glycolic Acid, which gently exfoliates away dead skin cells and has not only improved my skin texture but also my complexion looks brighter and glowing. I can really see a massive difference - probably more so than with any other product before.

I've been using it twice daily for about two weeks now and already my skin is smoother than it has been in years. Initially I came out in a big spot on my forehead (all the toxins being drawn out, I guess) but it disappeared within a few days and now, the bumpy texture that had previously appeared on my forehead has gone, and my skin feels so much softer all over. Just take heed of the 'avoid eye area' warning on the label - I forgot, and it stings like a b* on the delicate skin on my eyelids!

Simple Micellar Water* 

Micellar Water is probably the best beauty invention of recent years in my opinion; removing make-up and cleansing the skin without the need to even rinse. I've tried some high-end (Embryolisse, Bioderma) and drugstore micellar waters (Garnier, B. Pure) but the best I've tried is the Simple Kind To Skin Micellar Water.

Cheaper brands that I've tried in the past have required a bit more scrubbing, or left a funny taste on my lips, but Simple lives up to the standards of Bioderma for less than a fiver. I find it sweeps make-up away with ease, and leaves my skin feeling really soothed and refreshed.

Clinique Pep Start Eye Cream

My biggest skincare concern, personally, is my dark, puffy, under-eye bags. I always look tired and my eyes often feel quite tight and heavy. My Embryolisse Radiant Eye stick had gone all gloopy and disintegrated, so I was in the market for an upgrade, and was instantly drawn to this cheery orange tube.

Clinique's Pep Start Eye Cream is a good night's sleep in a tube, thanks to it's peptide-packed formula. Stress and not getting enough sleep can threaten the skin's collagen, but the peptides work to support and maintain healthy levels of collagen to keep the eye area firm and youthful.

The oil-free cream is hydrating, smoothing and gives eyes a brighter appearance, while the ball applicator tip gently massages the eye area, draining toxins and reducing puffiness. Upon application, it's cooling, refreshing and instantly brightening, making it perfect for mornings or (as it works just as well over make-up) a mid-afternoon pick me up.

£22 from Debenhams (or buy as part of the GoGo Eyes Set to get a free mascara and eyeliner!)

The Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Boosting Moisturiser* 

I've reintroduced this moisturiser into my skincare line up recently, as the lightweight gel texture and fresh citrus scent makes it more suited to Spring and Summer (I used it a couple of times last September, but switched to something a bit creamier for the colder months). It drenches the skin with hydration, thanks to it's water based, vitamin C packed formula, and illuminates dull skin. It absorbs immediately and is weightless on the skin, leaving behind just a glowing, smooth complexion that's perfectly primed for make up.

Have you tried the Pixi Glow Tonic yet? What are your favourite skincare products at the moment?
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02.04 - Louise and I had a lovely catch up over a Bill's brunch; avocado and egg on toast, of course.

02.04 - I ordered a new tan strap to update my Olivia Burton Hackney watch. The cream one I had was looking pretty grubby, but it feels like I have a brand new watch!

07.04 - I had an afternoon of press days with Laura. This is the stunning copper and cactus vibe going on in Urban Outfitters homeware... love!

07.04 - We also went to the Debenhams Beauty Press Show (read about all my fave new launches in this post). Couldn't resist a snap of my rose gold metallic loafers against the rainbow striped carpet in the Haymarket Townhouse!

09.04 - Rich papped me on the phone while we had our first drink on the beach of the year! Also, I got this amazing new phone case which has googly-eyed avocados on it. Cos why the hell not?!

23.04 - Tried out the new breakfast delivery service from Deliveroo!

24.04 - Absolutely loving the Pixi Glow Tonic that I picked up this month, it's doing wonders for my complexion!

25.04 - Had to take a day off sick from work with a horrible bug! But pink poorly treats made me feel a little better...

30.04 - Pay day shopping! Couldn't resist the Clinique Chubby in the Nude foundation stick after our coffee date with Clinique and picked up the Pep Start eye cream too. Also, a couple pairs of sunnies from Topshop and some Essie 3 for 2 goodness in Superdrug.

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Brunch, delivered.

This week, Deliveroo made a pretty exciting announcement in just one word: brunch.

Yep, we can now enjoy some of our favourite Brighton brunch-eries from the comfort of our own homes from 9am on Saturdays and Sundays, and this morning I took full advantage of this.

We ordered from LangeLees; Eggs Benedict for me, a LangeLees breakfast with black pudding for Rich and two bottles of fresh orange juice. The menu has a large selection of vegan and meaty full English breakfasts, eggs and pancakes. For me it was a toss up between the pancakes and the eggs, so I'll be getting pancakes next time!

Our food arrived well packed up and piping hot (although it was cold by the time we'd photographed it #bloggerproblems). It took around 40 minutes, and you can even track your food's journey in real-time on the Deliveroo app, which was accurate to the second!

My eggs were poached to perfection, the sourdough bread was chewy with a crisp crust and the hollandaise was lovely. The bacon could have done with a few more minutes, but I like it really crispy. I really enjoyed the Frobishers OJ too - you really can tell the difference when you have a premium brand and, as we're both feeling a little poorly, it was just the hit of Vitamin C that we needed! Rich said his brekkie was 'nice' - perhaps you'll get a bit more info over on his blog.

Sat in our sunny bay window, still wearing our PJs, enjoying a home cooked breakfast that we didn't have to cook was a perfect start to the weekend! We're seriously considering getting our dinner delivered tonight too. Porkers.

If Deliveroo deliver in your town you can get £5 off by clicking here: Let me know what you get! 

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Coffee with Clinique

Katy, the lovely (and rather hilarious) manager of my local Clinique counter, invited a few Brighton beauty bloggers for a quick coffee after work on Friday to show us the brand new 'Chubby in the Nude' foundation sticks, which launched that very day!

Chubby in the Nude is the latest addition to Clinique's popular Chubby Stick range, meaning there is now a Chubby Stick for eyes, cheeks, lips, contour, highlight and foundation. As you can see, the one photo I managed to take, SUCKS, so I've embedded a clip of Georgia's vlog below, where you can see the Foundation Stick in action.

I tried it out for myself too, and despite not being much of a foundation wearer, I was left super impressed. Here's why:

  • They're far more creamy and moisturising than you might expect
  • They give a lovely sheer coverage, that disguises any uneven skin tone but looks really fresh and glowy...
  • ...but builds up to a moderate coverage, should you need it
  • The sheer coverage means that the shades are a little more versatile, and you won't need to worry too much about changing shades when you get a tan
  • They'll be great for taking in hand luggage on holiday - one less liquid to worry about! 
  • They're fun! You apply the sticks by doodling patterns/flowers/cat whiskers on your face before blending it in

Katy also gave us some good skincare and make-up tips; my favourite being her sworn method of disguising dark under eye circles - using pink lipstick underneath your concealer!

Unfortunately for me, there are no sample sized Chubby in the Nude sticks (boo hoo!) so I'm going to have to wait until pay day to buy one of my own. But, Katy did give us a few goodies to take away; a chubby stick for lips in 'Super Strawberry' which is a universally-flattering pink shade, a sample mascara (which I'm yet to try) and a little tube of Clinique Smart Custom-Repair Serum which, after just a weekend of use, has left my skin insanely soft! I think I'll be picking up the full size of that too!

Have you tried any of the Clinique Chubby Sticks?
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Debenhams Beauty: my favourites from the SS16 Press Day

There are worse ways to spend a Thursday afternoon, than in a beautifully decorated London townhouse, packed to the rafters with beauty products. Debenhams' SS16 Beauty Press Day was held in the gorgeous Haymarket Townhouse, where florals (for Spring? Groundbreaking.) featured on the walls, the furnishings, and even in the baths. A selection of this season's best in beauty from Debenhams was presented over three floors, and Laura (from What Laura Did Next) and I had a rather lovely afternoon exploring what's in store for the sunnier months of this year. Here's a run down of my absolute favourite picks of the day... 

I fell in love with Jurlique's brand story, which I heard over recieving a lovely hand massage with their luxury Rose Hand Cream. The brand have their own farm in Australia, where the 8,000 rose petals that go into every 100ml bottle of their famous Rosewater Balancing Mist are handpicked, amongst the wild Kangaroos that share their fields. New in for SS16 is the Intense Deluxe Edition of the Rosewater Balancing Mist, which contains five different rose extracts and is packaged in a limited edition bottle. Also new for Jurlique, are the aromatherapy mists in a choice of revitalising, calming or balancing blends. 

I loved this Urban Decay bronzer so much that I had to pick up one of my own on my lunch break the next day! Obviously the palm tree artwork on the compact and big mirror inside won me over, but the velvety formula, matte finish and perfect natural golden shade sealed the deal. 

And continuing the theme of cute compacts is the YSL Touche Eclat Blur Perfecting Primer. How adorable is the baby pink with gold detailing?! Inside, is a pale pink balm that's silky-soft and weightless. It feels and performs a little like Benefit's Porefessional, minimising the appearance of pores and blurring over imperfections, but in million dollar packaging. I also loved YSL's limited edition hero product (the Touche Eclat) for this year; three designs each featuring a handwritten quote: 'all eyes on me', 'I am not a morning person' and 'no need for sleep'.

Clarins have some exciting new launches for SS16. Four gorgeous waterproof cream-to-powder eyeshadows in dazzling metallic shades (I love 'copper brown'), a new shade of Instant Light Comfort Lip Oil in Red Berry, and the Double Fix Mascara - a clear gel that you apply over your favourite mascara and brow products to make them totally waterproof. A must have holiday product! 

Guerlain's SS16 collection includes these five travel-friendly tubes of effective skincare solutions that provide instant visible effects. Stop Spot is supposed to combat spots and blemishes in an instant, and is tinted so it can be used to conceal and work throughout the day. Super Lips is a gorgeously glossy and smoothing lip balm. Midnight Secret is an overnight miracle cream that provides a glowing, fresh complexion in the morning. Radiance in a Flash is a tightening, lifting cream with a pearlescent finish for radiant skin, and finally, Creme SOS - a skincare saviour that rescues skin from environmental stressors like UV rays from the sun, harsh sea winds, air conditioning or pollution. 

I have and love Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream (the blue one), but the latest Daisy Dream Blush is even more me. Aside from being pink, it has more powdery/woody scent that I just love. 

Too Faced's Mr Right Powder Brush is just the cutest! It's multi-functional too (like any Mr Right should be) and can be used for foundation, powder, blush or bronzer. Maybe the perfect partner to my new Urban Decay Beached Bronzer...?

I mean, I don't really know what to say about these weird twisted essie bottles. There was no explanation and I can't find anything online about them... but they're pretty trippy! Laura thought they might be a new design that are easier to hold, which I guess makes sense!

What are you most looking forward to adding to your beauty stash this season?

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10.03 I turned 25! On my birthday, I went to the Mermaid Spa with my mum (where I pulled out the 'make a wish' mermaid oracle card!) and out for dinner with my Dad. 

12.03 Rich and I spent my birthday weekend in Dorset. We went out for a lovely meal at The True Lover's Knot, where we had an entire baked camembert with french bread! 

13.03 We also went to Monkey World in Dorset. I loved the Lemur enclosure where you can walk alongside the Lemurs who are left to roam free!

19.03 I went to the Brighton Blog Meet, where I caught up with some of my favourites, got an amazing goody bag (here's a look inside) and met some lovely new bloggers; Georgia, Katie and Beth

25.03 The long bank holiday weekend started with some cocktails with my new work friends.

27.03 We went to my mum's for a big Easter Sunday lunch, including my mum's amazing and very yummy Simnel cake!

28.03 Easter Monday - I slobbed out all day (after a double workout) in my new pyjamas (which are just the best in the world) and finished off all the cake/chocolate/junk food in the house ready for....

30.03 ...getting back on a health kick in my new Pink Soda Sport gym top. I also bought the Body Coach's Lean in 15 book and made...

31.03 .... a Nut & Mango smoothie. SO GOOD. Raspberries, Mango, Almond Butter and Almond Milk - perfect quick breakfast!

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5 ways to care for highlighted hair

1. Protect your colour 

Highlights aren't cheap, so it's worth investing in some decent colour protect shampoo & conditioner to keep your colour looking fresher for longer! My hairdresser recommends using any salon professional brand (My favourite is Pureology's Hydrate range which has Anti-Fade Complex) but you can get some great, more affordable options on the High Street, like John Frieda's Sheer Blonde range for one. Their 'Everlasting Blonde' shampoo & conditioner is really good for maintaining a vibrant colour straight from the salon, and then the 'Go Blonder' shampoo & conditioner* are great for lightening your colour by up to two shades, after it starts to fade.

2. Use a nourishing mask

Blonde hair is often prone to being dry and brittle; this is because the cuticle shafts open during the bleaching process and allow moisture to escape. Highlighted hair will never be as soft and healthy as untreated hair, but using a nourishing mask on the regular will help to rehydrate and regain elasticity. I love amika's Nourishing Mask with Sea Buckthorn Berry, which looks gorgeous, smells gorgeous, and leaves my hair deeply conditioned.

3. Leave-in products

The downside of blonde hair is that it has a tendency to go frizzy, dull and straw-like! Serums, leave in conditioners, oils etc are so necessary to keep blonde hair looking healthy. My two absolute favourites that I use on a daily basis (sometimes together, sometimes alone) are the Bumble & Bumble Hairdressers Invisible Oil Primer and the Original & Mineral Project Sukuroi Smoothing Balm*.

The Bumble Primer is an infusion of six lightweight oils that leave my hair super soft and manageable, reducing frizz and protecting against heat and UV. The O&M Smoothing Balm is also wonderfully softening and can be used on wet hair, as a leave in repair treatment, or on dry hair as a finishing, smoothing, shine-enhancing balm.

4. Lay off the heat

Overheating already dehydrated hair just further reduces it's moisture and elasticity, making it dryer and even more damaged. When I have the time I try to let my hair air dry, or if I need to use the hairdryer I use the cooler heat setting. As my hair is super frizzy, it needs smoothing down with the straighteners (which isn't the best) but I always use a heat protection spray (the ghd Heat Protect Spray, if you were wondering!)  

5. Get a decent hairbrush

As well as being brittle and prone to breakages, the raised/rough cuticles of highlighted hairs interlock and tangle, so a gentle detangling brush is an absolute must. I couldn't live without my Wet Brush; I actually have three! One for the shower, one for my dresser and one for my bag. It's 'intelliflex' bristles and air cushion work together to minimise tugging and pulling (therefore minimising breakages) and make easy work of detangling. I recommend everyone get themselves a Wet Brush, regardless of hair colour - read my full Wet Brush review here if you need further convincing.

How do you care for your coloured hair?
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What's in my #BtonBlogMeet goody bag?

Last weekend was rather lovely; I got to catch up with some good friends, meet some new ones, and get a bag full of goodies to boot!  The Brighton Blogger Meet was a nice, laid-back affair in the basement of The Globe pub. It was pretty dark (minus the pretty fairy lights), and I have no idea how to work Rich's big DSLR camera properly, so none of my photos were blog-worthy, but I thought you'd be most interested in having a nosey through my fantastic goody bag! 

Let's start with my absolute FAVOURITES, shall we?

  • E1 Candles Rose & Sandalwood soy candle, from WICK candle boutique in Hove. Rose & Sandalwood are two of my favourite scents so I was pretty chuffed with this, and I love the design of the jar. I will definitely be stocking up on candles from WICK next time I venture into Hove. 
  • Meraki Aloe Vera Make Up Wipes & Mint Lip Balm. Do what they say on the tin, but I'm pleased to have discovered Meraki! It's a Danish skincare brand with ultra-stylish packaging that reminds me of Aesop but for a fraction of the price!  
  • Grey Checked Washcloth & Pink Geometric Notebook from Homage; a homeware/lifestyle store located on Seven Dials who actually exhibited a selection of products at the meet (but as I say, my photos sucked!). I was in love with their enamel mugs, stone vases, and throws. 
  • Chill ed protect leave in treatment, which detangles, repairs and gives shine to dull hair - I definitely need this! I've just used it and it certainly detangles (my hair is still wet as I type, so will report back on the shine factor!)
  • Anatomicals face masks, a mattifying one and a deep cleansing mud mask. Can't wait to pop one of these on (Rich will probably steal the other).
  • Body Fantasies 'Pink Vanilla Kiss' Body Spray. Vanilla isn't usually my thing, but I love this! Always handy to keep a little body spray in one's handbag (especially if you walk up three hills to get to work like I do... peeewwww)

So those are the things I loved the most, but wait there's more!

  • Minty Coco - I've heard oil pulling is great for teeth whitening and oral hygiene, but I've heard it's pretty unpleasant. Minty Coco are little sachets of mint flavoured coconut oil, so it tastes rather nice and leaves your mouth feeling super fresh!
  • Purepotions Skin Salvation samples, a hand cream, daily moisturising cream, and intensive moisturising ointment. They're ideal for really dry, eczema prone skin and 100% natural. 
  • Bio Oil, I used Bio Oil a few years ago to get rid of a scar on my arm and it totally worked! Handy to keep in the medicine box!
  • Bee Good Youth Enhancing Lift & Brighten Eye Cream, I really like BeeGood products so I'm excited to try this!
  • Green People Fruit Scrub Exfoliator, which I've used before - it smells lovely and leaves skin glowy, and samples of the Quinoa and Artichoke shampoo & conditioner which I've reviewed here
  • MooGoo Anti-Ageing Face Cream, this is 100% natural and contains SPF 15, which is great as I always forget - but it's quite a thicker consistency than I usually prefer.
  • Patisserie Lemon Bon-Bon Hand & Body Lotion, this is a lovely, refreshing, sweet lemon scent and a nice thin consistency makes it quick and easy to slather on.
  • Stigu Planner 2016. I've decided to give this to Rich as I work in a paperless office and it's a pain to be different and keep a paper diary! But I'm quite sad to give it away as it's really so cute; the left hand pages have cute illustrations with little life hacks (like stress busters, stretches/exercises to try, ways to keep organised and happy) and the right hand pages are a week-view diary. He needs to be more organised so I hope he'll enjoy using this!

And some tasty treats too!

  • Life Tonics flavoured coconut water - I got Dalandan Orange and Elderberry and Juniper. 
  • Funkin Cocktail Mixers in Peach Bellini and Raspberry Mojito. I'm not a big drinker really, but can't wait for an occasion to crack these open!
  • esthechoc - chocolate that gives you radiant skin - I admit I was sceptical. But it tastes nice (if you like dark chocolate) so that's good enough for me!
  • UFit protein milk in chocolate and strawberry. I'm doing three Body Pump classes this weekend so will be drinking these afterwards to repair and grow my muscles!
  • Collagen+ Beauty Milk containing collagen, vitamin C, protein and green tea extract!
  • Tasty Little Numbers Treats. These were my favourite snacks, SO tasty and everything is only 100 calories - great for when you just need some chocolate but don't want to feel guilty! I got a milk chocolate and white chocolate biscuit bar, and a bag of chocolate coffee beans - YUM! 
  • Metcalfes Cinnamon Sweet Skinny Popcorn....which has mysteriously disappeared. I'm sure whoever ate it thought it was very tasty. 

Laura of LolaandBehold had spent months working hard organising the Brighton Blogger Meet (she is seriously superwoman, this is the second time she has organised a bloody brilliant meet up, whilst studying/working full time!) and I think I speak for everyone when I say we had a great time! Thanks Laura!

Have you been to a local blogger meet up before?
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Essie Retro Revival

Important announcement: Essie have a new, limited edition collection, and it's selling out fast! It'll be off shelves by mid-April, so I'll keep this short so you can hurry out and pick yourselves up a shade or two!

The Retro Revival collection has been created to celebrate Essie's 35th anniversary, and has brought some of the most loved shades back into the spotlight. There's something for every taste; a sultry pearly red (Life of the Party), a pearly white (Cabana Boy), a sheer, glittery bronze (Sequin Sash), a daring navy blue glitter (Starry, Starry Night), and my two favourites; A chic translucent nude (Birthday Suit) and a sheer, iridescent pink (Bikini with a Martini). 

As you can tell from the names and the limited edition brush handle design, there's a bit of a theme going on, and it's a nod back to the brand's Las Vegas roots. The first ever Essie collection was first sold to showgirls on the Vegas strip, and the rest is history.

The two shades from the collection that I've got, Birthday Suit* and Bikini with a Martini*, are far sheerer than most of the other Essie shades in my collection, but both just give a nice wash of colour. Birthday Suit would work particularly well over a french tip, and Bikini with a Martini works well as a subtle shimmer on it's own, or to add a bit of glitz and glam over the top of another pink polish. 

Get your skates on if you want to get your hands on any of these shades, and I recommend you do. They're just lovely, and you'll own a piece of Essie history.

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Dining with Deliveroo

We do love a Saturday night takeaway in our household (and let's be real, on most other nights of the week too) so I was pretty excited when Deliveroo started up in Brighton a few months back. Deliveroo is a takeaway service that'll pick up food from your favourite restaurants and deliver to your front door; from nationwide chains like Wagamama and Yo Sushi to local independent restaurants and cafes.

I'd wanted to try Deliveroo for aaaages, but was worried that the food wouldn't withstand the journey via motorbike to my house, so always ended up sticking with a trusty Dominos or Chinese takeaway. So I jumped at the chance to try out the service for free to review on my blog!

There are loads of my favourite Brighton restaurants on Deliveroo, but my Dad and I ate at the Chilli Pickle on my birthday (a kooky street-food inspired Indian restaurant in Brighton) and I really enjoyed it, so we decided to order from there. Chilli Pickle have just launched a new takeaway lunch menu, but we decided to order at dinner time.

The Deliveroo website, in general, is super easy to use, and the mobile app is even better as it gives you a countdown and even shows you your driver (biker?) making his way to your house! However, the Chilli Pickle menu isn't a conventional curry house takeaway (they present your curry in cardboard trays with little pots of different dishes to try) so I did find myself having to check out the Chilli Pickle's own website to understand quite what I was ordering. On there, they had helpful little diagrams showing what you get in a 'Railway Tray' vs the 'Grand Thali Box'- it would be helpful to have these on the Deliveroo site I think. Having said that, I've since ordered a Gourmet Burger Kitchen from Deliveroo (which has a much more self-explanatory menu!) and that was a far more simple process!

The food did in fact survive its motorbike ride, and arrived perfectly in tact and piping hot, within about 45 minutes. We each ordered a Railway Tray; a curry of your choice (I had a Persian Royal Chicken Korma, Rich had a Kashmiri Gosht), rice, and a selection of dishes including chutney, dal, crackers and naan bread. Aside from being beautifully presented in fun canteen-style cardboard trays, this is no ordinary Indian takeaway.

I'm no food critic, but the Chilli Pickle is far from your average curry house; my chicken was beautifully cooked, the korma sauce was divinely creamy and made with cashews, ginger and rose. The brightly coloured pink and green rice crackers are a far cry from your standard popadom and as well as using authentic ingredients from all over India, The Chilli Pickle use locally sourced ingredients too; Rich's curry fused Kashmiri chillies with South Downs Mutton Shoulder. 

I don't think we'll be going back to ordering greasy takeaways anymore, when we could have our favourite restaurant meals delivered for just £2.50! 

What's your favourite takeaway? 

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