Wednesday, 31 July 2013

John Frieda Full Repair: Hydrate + Rescue

John Frieda Full Repair: Hydrate + Rescue | John Frieda Full Repair: Hydrate + Rescue 2 |

Over the years, I've flitted about with different shampoos, conditioners and other hair treatments. I have long, thick and often frizzy hair that really doesn't react well with the humidity. Prone to split ends and dry, brittle break-offs I've always been on the lookout for products that are going to give my hair that radiance and shine I once achieved so easily as a child.

John Frieda have never been far from my beauty cupboard as my mum has always had something of theirs tucked away in her hairdressing bag which has made it's way into my routine. A few months ago I'd purchased the Frizz-Ease Hair Serum, £6.29, which was great but I found myself having to use so much of the product as I have such thick and long hair. One pump is never enough for me, no matter what the bottle says. With this in mind, when I was asked to see if I'd like to try the new Full Repair range to see if the condition of my hair would improve, I jumped at the chance!

The Full Repair Hydrate + Rescue Shampoo*, £5.89, and Conditioner*, £5.89, have been in my shower for a week or so now and the smell alone is different to most hair products I invest in. It's so much more 'grown up' than I buy, perhaps less floral and fruity and more luxurious and rich. The same can be said of the Deep Conditioner*, £6.99, which I tend to apply to my ends after a general condition and leave it on to really nourish my sun bleached and brittle tips. The inclusion of Inca Inchi Oil, a Peruvian nutrient from the Amazon, gives a boost of omega-3 without being greasy and heavy on the hair. After just one use I noticed a difference in the condition of my ends especially, they don't look anywhere near as dry or break off at an alarming rate. A few more washes and my hair feel silky smooth and I've had so many compliments, people wondering if I've coloured my hair recently which I suppose is down to how healthy and shiny it is.

For my frizziness, the Full Repair Flyaway Tamer Smoothing Wand*, £10.99, is perfect to pop in my bag, or pocket to carry around during the day and touch up any stubborn hairs that just won't lay still. It has the same scent as the shampoo and conditioner, which I can't get enough of. Like a mascara wand, you just brush it through any unmanageable areas and voila! This has fast become my favourite of all the products, but be careful of going too overboard or, like hairspray, it can go a little crispy to touch.

The final product I don't use all too often but, when I'm opting for bouncy curls, a few drops of the Frizz-Ease Dream Curls Enhancing Oil*, £9.99, before drying really bring out the style and adds volume. I have naturally wavy to straight hair, and this just gives me slight beachy waves that stay put. A little salt spray and this look will last all day and night, even in this intense heat!

Have you tried any John Frieda products? What's your favourite?

Monday, 29 July 2013

My First Youtube Video: Bit of a Haul

Beauty & Fashion Haul #1 |

As some of you may know, I've been chirping on about getting a video uploaded onto my YouTube channel for an age now. Guess what? I only went and did it! A quick (read: awkward) video of a recent haul. Don't judge me too harshly, I got the products over a length of time rather than all over a day or so. Let me know what you think and what videos I should do next. I'm thinking my next one could be the 3 Minute Makeup Challenge!

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Shower Heroes

Shower Heroes |

I'm a bath kinda girl normally, but with this heat I've been having more cold showers than anything else and it's been a real lifesaver. When I have baths I know what products I'll reach for on a daily basis, but with showers I'm slightly more invested and need to know that whatever I use is going to go the distance in the shortest space of time possible. Here are three products I've been loving recently.

1. Nivea's In Shower Body Moisturiser - If you're a regular reader of the blog, you'll know I've already typed up a fairly thorough review of this on Monday. It hasn't left my routine since testing it out, and for a dry skinned, moisturising dunce like myself, it can only be a good thing. The more I use it the better my skin has been feeling too!

2. SBC Creme Shower Gel with Passion Flower & Kukui Seed Oils* - I'm not usually one to go on about a particular shower gel or body wash, but when one smells as lovely as this and is satin smooth to touch, you can't help but get a little excited when shower time rolls around. I can't place my finger on the scent (even though it's written down for me on the bottle) but it reminds me of something from my childhood. A completely heady and warm smell that mellows into a light fragrance that's neither overpowering nor disappears quickly. The only downside is that it comes out of the tube a little too runny so I've wasted a lot of product just trying to put the cap back on, which is a real shame but won't put me off repurchasing!

3. Origins Zero Oli Deep Pore Cleanser - This is my second bottle which I think that says quite a lot about this product. I first bought it on a whim in John Lewis early last year and wasn't blow away initially however, after a few uses, the dramatic reduction of oil on my t-zone was so apparent I had a makeup free day that left me glowing. More of a dry/normal skin range generally, I still recommend this cleanser to soak up any bit of shine you might have without dehydration.

So there you have it, three wonderful tubes of goodness that I had to share. What can't you leave behind when taking a shower?

Monday, 22 July 2013

Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser

Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser Hero | Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser Close Up |

Always one to be late to the party, I guess I'm finally jumping on the band wagon for Nivea's new venture into in-shower moisturisers. It's not a new concept, Olay and Lush both have offerings in this field but Nivea are certainly dominating the market. I've seen this explode over pretty much everyones blog recently but I've been so busy I've only just got around to trying this wondrous moisturiser out for myself.

I'll admit that I break one of the most important rules of skincare; I don't use body moisturiser. Okay, not never but it's a really rare occasion that I do. I tend to find that after I've used a body scrub or wash and dry myself off, the last thing I want to do is spend even more time having to cover every inch of my body in yet another product. The good news is, I'm vowing to get better, so please bear with me and send me gentle pokes in the right direction.

The genius thing about this moisturiser is how easy and versatile it is. After cleaning as you usually would, rinse that all off and stand a little out of the way of the direct stream of water. You'll need to really massage the moisturiser in and having the water lapping at your skin isn't going to help it sink in. If your shower isn't big enough I'd even suggest stepping out of it while you get to work. Apparently it's instantly absorbed into the skin, but I love to give this more of a fighting chance as my skin can be pretty temperamental hydration-wise. I found about two hand sized squeezes does the trick to cover me from neck to toe. The consistency is slightly thicker than a body milk and thinner than a traditional moisturiser. My one annoyance is it's quite difficult to see where you've already covered and you can end up wasting a lot of product. Don't forget to wash it off though, or you'll be very unpleasantly surprised when you go to towel off.

It's after you're dry that the Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser, £2.56, comes into its own. That tiny bit of extra time spent working this into the skin leaves everything supple and silky smooth. Some have complained of a greasy residue being left behind, but I've not experienced this and wonder if it might be down to too much product used at once. There's no stickiness, just hydrated skin that has done wonders for my self confidence. Investing time to properly moisturise is something I'll be adhering to and will give me an excuse to dip into my Origins Grapefruit SoufflĂ©. I'll be using this on days I'm rushed off my feet and in dire need of a pick me up for my dull, dry skin that can be topped up with a moisturiser to tackle the really hardwearing areas like elbows and knees.

Nivea have hit the mark with this product and, although not the prettiest package in the beauty cupboard, will spark other companies to create their own. Don't be surprised to see more in shower moisturisers over the coming months!

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Neutrogena Visibly Clear Pore & Shine Daily Scrub

Neutrogena Visibly Clear Pore & Shine Daily Scrub |

In the never ending quest to find the holy grail of face scrubs, I came across Phat Cupcake's post on London Beauty Queen's blog about Neutrogena's Visibly Clear Pore & Shine Daily Scrub. At a very reasonable £4.49, I figured I could afford to test it out as most recently I've been using a mixture of Clinique products and a purse friendly alternative was on the cards for the long term.

Neutrogena has been one of those brands that I've bought on and off since my school years but never stayed truly faithful to. I'm constantly substituting products in and out to shake up my routine and the last product I recall of theirs in rotation was the Visibly Clear Pink Grapefruit Daily Scrub, which smelt heavenly but didn't buff my skin liked I hoped it would. I associate Neutrogena with Clean & Clear and other brands targeted at the acne-prone teenager looking for a boost in confidence. I've learnt never to judge a book by its cover and, with the claims of mattified skin and tightened pores, its time to flip my opinion on its head!

Starting with a wet face, massage a 20p sized amount onto the skin, really working it into any problems areas. For me this is around my nose, my chin and all along my forehead as these are the areas I get a lot of stubborn dry skin. The scent is unusual when in contact with the skin, the mixture of tangerine and lime smells nicer in the tube which is a real shame. There just isn't that gratification I felt from the Pink Grapefruit version, which I was always afraid I'd end up ingesting as it smelt good enough to eat! I can get past the scent however, when I give the scrub an extra hand with one of my natural sea sponges to rinse off any residue as you can feel a slight tingling sensation which I assume to be the pores closing up.

I find I go a little red after working this in, but nothing that a few minutes of letting it breathe won't resolve. This is probably due to my technique more than the scrub itself, as I get so paranoid that I won't shift those last few dead skin cells that tend to make my makeup look patchy and caked on. As for shine reduction? I have to say that there was a massive improvement in this department. I have odd skin, really dry in places and then slightly oily in my t-zone but normal pretty much everywhere else. I've been using this scrub before my usual toning and moisturising to set me up for a touch of concealer with a light coating of mascara. It's really uplifting to wear less makeup and have my skin care work its magic!

Do you use any Neutrogena products?

Monday, 8 July 2013

The Liebster Award

Liebster Award Thanks | Liebster Award Badge |
I don't usually do these kind of posts, but as I was nominated by my best friend Megan, of Little Miss Average, I just had to fill this out. It's lovely to be considered for something like this and it gives me the chance to show my personality a little more than in my regular posts. I was also nominated by Sarah of Squares - Bookworm & Beauty Enthusiast and Emily of British Beauty Addict so would like to thank them also.

The Liebster Award is given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. So, what is a Liebster?  The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. Isn't that sweet? Blogging is about building a community and it's a great way to connect with other bloggers and help spread the word about newer bloggers/blogs.

1. Each nominee should answer the 11 questions by the tagger.
2. Choose 11 bloggers with under 200 followers to pass the award to and link them in your post.
3. Create 11 new questions for the chosen bloggers.
4. Go to their page and tell them about their nomination.
5. No tag backs!

1. If you could trade places with any celebrity, who would it be?

This question is much tougher to answer than I originally thought when I skimmed over it before typing up this post. I could be very superficial and chose a great looking actress with everything I think I'd love in my life but I think I'd want more than what appears on the surface. An actress I am currently loving for every aspect of her life is Chloe Moretz. She's already done so much and I can only imagine what she's yet to achieve and her sense of fashion has me in awe. She is beautiful however, but I picked her as I can only imagine just how interesting her life is and how well she manages to separate her professional and private life.

2. What character from a book, TV show, or movie do you identify with most?

The closest I've come across is probably Debra Morgan from Dexter. I swear like a trooper, keep secrets for family, get walked over quite a lot but have real drive and determination. Every time she's on TV I wonder if I'd gone into crime whether I wouldn't be a carbon copy.

3. What is the one beauty product you can't live without?

I think I could go without most things on good skin days, but even then I have to admit I would forgo most products in favour of concealer. There are a few stubborn areas that I like to add a touch to, just to give me that little bit more confidence.

4. What is the best concert you've ever attended?

Hmm… I've been to see some fantastic bands and artists in my life. I've been ridiculously lucky! Amazingly enough, one of my favourites was a small gig at Start The Bus in Bristol, UK seeing Jamie Woon and then having Ghostpoet as a support. We went back to see his headlining gig and recently saw him again in Oxford. That gig was just perfect, the right atmosphere, good company and great music. Although, I do have to say that seeing Rudimental last month was an experience!

5. Who is your celebrity crush?

I'm pretty much in love with Paul Rudd. He makes me laugh until I cry and exudes a sexiness I don't find with many men in comedy. The scene in Wanderlust where he's talking into the mirror about having sex is one of the funniest things I've ever witnessed, go check it out on Youtube if you don't know what I'm on about. I'm giggling now just thinking about it! Ross has made a point that he thought I'd go for Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and I have had a crush on him since I was about 10(!) but it seemed too obvious.

6. Candles or air freshener?

Candles! I take any opportunity to buy candles, especially pretty ones in really awkward holders that just look fantastic in my living room. I do have plug in air fresheners, but candles make a room come to life. I run round the house lighting them when I have guests over.

7. If you drink coffee, what is your favourite drink to order?

I tend to order large skinny soy lattes when I'm in Starbucks, although I'm trying to cut caffeine out so I will have to change my order entirely. Caffeine makes me have an awful nights sleep and I definitely notice the difference when I've had a late night working on a project and knocked back the coffee.

8. What is your favourite candy?

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. I could eat those all day! I made a batch of cupcakes using them a few months back and they were delicious. I'm hoping to experiment more with cooking to expand the blog further.

9. What is your favourite piece of clothing?

I have a pair of black jeans from River Island I wear so much they've started to fade. They're the perfect fit, shape and length. This has reminded me to get some black dye and breathe new life into them!

10. Have you ever been on television or in the newspaper?  If so, why?

I was in the newspaper back in my school days for taking part in a pantomime outside of class. That was a lovely experience, but the stage really isn't for me! Fast forward a few years to a trip to New York with my college class. We were asked to go on Good Morning America on location, we got a free breakfast and promoted Mr Motivator on billboards.

11. If there is one thing you could do over in your life, good or bad, what would it be?

There are a few more personal things I still think I'd change, but then I don't think I'd be where I am today,  with the people I have in my life, which I wouldn't change for the world.

1. Stevie from Stevie Hearts Makeup
2. Tamira from Lipstick With Some Sunshine
3. Fiona from Fiona Likes to Blog
4. Rosie from Rosie Louise Love
5. Leigh from imleigh beauty
6. Elle from The Elle Next Door
7. Megan from Blondes Love Cupcakes
8. Debbie from Shapes & Sizes
9. Amy & Naomi from Two Shoes, One Pair
10. Kirstie from A Yellow Brick Blog
11. Kumba from Kumbear xo

1. What's the one beauty product you can't live without?
2. Who inspires you?
3. Something that you learnt recently.
4. Are you better in the morning or at night?
5. Grab 5 beauty products that are nearby. What are they?
6. Why did you start blogging?
7. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
8. Current favourite colour palette?
9. What are your goals for your blog?
10. What is your most recent beauty/fashion purchase?
11. If you could be someone else for a day, who would it be and why?

I'm looking forward to reading everyones answers, so let me know once you post them up. Here's to the continued success of each and every one of you!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Happy 4th of July!

July 4th Nails - 1 | July 4th Nails - 2 | July 4th Nails - 3 | July 4th Nails - 4 |

This time last year I was in America, North Carolina to be exact. I was sunning it up with my best friend Megan, Little Miss Average, and we were making plans for an extra special July 4th celebration. We went to downtown Raleigh where there was a street fair, food stalls, live music and fireworks. It was a day that I will remember for the rest of my life, it will always hold special meaning for me despite being British.

Skip forward to the present and the sun has just about decided to show itself and I've hung my flag in the spare room as my own personal tribute. I much refer the America holidays, they do things bigger, better and a whole lot tastier too. Hot dogs and watermelon anyone? Deciding to embrace one of my favourite holidays, it was time to plan a little post to salute the 'ol red, white and blue.

Barry M have been doing some wonderful colours for the S/S season and, with my sights set on capturing American spirit on my nails, I couldn't think of a better brand to adorn them with. I wanted to go fairly minimal with my approach, my hands seem to go in crazy directions when tasked with adding colour to my nails so here's my quick run down on how you can achieve my simple stars and stripes design:

Start off by prepping your nails with a base coat, my favourite at the moment is Constance Carroll Nail Care Base Coat, £0.50. Paint your thumbnails with a really rich blue, I've gone with Gelly Hi-Shine in Blue Grape, £3.99, and while they are drying pop a coat of Nail Paint in Matt White, £2.99, over each fingernail. This white is so intense I found I only needed the one coat, but if you find it slightly too pale, give it another when dry. To create the stripes on the flag, a little swipe of Nail Paint in Bright Red, £2.99, on one half of the nail makes for a wonderfully simple block effect. Lastly, we need to grab a cocktail stick (or if you're better organised than myself, you may have a white nail art pen) and draw a few aligned stars in white over the blue thumbnails. Wait for everything to set and then add a little extra protection with a long lasting top coat such as Essie's Good to Go Top Coat, £8.99.

July 4th Nails - 5 |

And there you have it, my first jaunt into the world of nail art. Well, at least that I could bear to post pictures of for the whole world and her cat to see, but we'll keep that a secret between us! I really enjoy doing it when I have a clear idea ahead of me. I tried an Aztec print way back before Christmas that I would like to redo, so you may not have seen the last of these kind of posts.

Do you like to do daring things with your nails?

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

CLOSED: MAC Lipstick 100 Follower Giveaway

Late Night Nonsense 100 Follower MAC Lipstick Giveaway |

This week I hit 100 followers on Bloglovin', which has made me deliriously happy. I didn't think anyone would read my blog, let alone 100 of you! Late Night Nonsense is just shy of 2 months old and I put in all of my spare time outside of work into it. I've never loved something so much and I hope it shows through in just how much effort I put in to each and every paragraph and photo.

In honour of my first proper landmark, I said I'd host a blog giveaway and I'm making good on that promise. After much deliberation about what to give away, I figured I'd offer a MAC Lipstick in a colour of your choice. This way I can giveaway something that you really, really want and I get to feel warm and fuzzy at making that happen!

The competition closes on the 31st of July 2013, so you've got plenty of time to scoop up some entries. Good luck!

Monday, 1 July 2013

What's In Your Handbag? - The Travel Edition

What's in your Handbag - Travel Edition 1 |

To start this post I'll have to admit something, I'm not a handbag kinda girl. I'd rather throw my cards, phone and lipstick in the pockets of my jacket or jeans and be on my way. But I do have to have a bag to carry around my belongings when I'm on a longer haul journey. I have a few faithfuls that do the job without breaking the bank, but a very special purchase seemed perfect for my overnight jaunts to friends and family that made me stop and think just how much money I'm carrying around with me. And let's not forget the cost of replacing anything that has more sentimental value or takes longer to replace. With this in mind I decided to enter the MoneySupermarket What's in your Handbag competition. I rarely do things like this but with the top prize being a Mulberry bag, purse and phone case I couldn't pass up the opportunity!