Month: December 2017

Beauty // Urban Calm, Met Quarter Event

A couple of weeks ago I was invited along to an open evening store event at the Urban Calm store in the Met Quarter, Liverpool. I’d heard great things about the brand and already following the Aintree store on Instagram, so couldn’t wait to see what they had planned in-store! The event took place a couple of weeks before Christmas, offering mini manicures, massages and facials to those in attendance. Located on the second floor of the Met Quarter, the store’s calming atmosphere and variety of treatments available makes it a fantastic go-to, whether you’re looking to relax and have a pamper yourself or treat a friend or loved one to an after-work spray tan or a refreshed new set of gel or acrylic nails! It was also during the event I discovered there are actually three stores in the chain – the Met Quarter, Aintree and a smaller beauty store in Ormskirk, where I live…Expect to hear more about that in an upcoming post! The staff were extremely welcoming, knowledgeable about the variety of …

Blogmas // My Favourite Xmas Tree Decorations

I can’t believe we’re half-way through Blogmas already! The month seems to be flying and Christmas Day is just over a week away! I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve done Blogmas my way – a mix of content and the type of posts you’d usually find on Ruth Writes, just a lot more frequent! But today, I’m here with a nod to Xmas and I thought I’d share with you our Christmas tree and my favourite tree decoration! Darren and I have lived together for just over two years now and been together for about 3 and a half. There’s so much emphasis in ‘real life’ on how soon is ‘too soon’ and the speed at which relationships evolve. We’re both into the last six months of our twenties and with so many friends around us getting married and having their second/third child, people ask when we will get married. But I love us how we are now. Yeah, course I want a ring and a baby eventually, but right now saving (or failing to …

Blogmas // Festive Party Looks with Sleek Cosmetics

It’s that time of the year when Instagram is awash with photos of Christmas parties. The annual works do is such an event in the calendar with all your pals planning what everyone’s wearing, are pre-drinks happening beforehand and who’s going out-out afterwards. But for me, the party starts at home when I start doing my make up! I love getting glammed up as I’m not really an out-out person and I tend to wear a full face on the daily anyway, so the opportunity to look even more extra and add a whole lot more sass to my look. One of my fave brands of the moment is Sleek Make UP. I’m sure you’ve gathered by now that I’m a fan of the budget make up brands that don’t cost the earth but have products worth investing in. Sleek is up there in my book on both counts! The Hella Good Eyes Set is perfect for creating loads of different eye looks. Complete with two full eyeshadow palettes, take your pick from either the …

Blogmas // Malmaison Festive Afternoon Tea

Afternoon tea is something that’s enjoyed by many. Your parents, grandparents, get together with the girls…mini sandwiches and savoury eats will even put a slight smile on the face of your grumpy boyfriend. It’s just lovely. So, when the lovely guys over at The Malmaison Liverpool got in touch to invite a guest and I along to sample their festive afternoon tea, I was all over it. My mum and I headed along this weekend to start getting into the festive spirit and take shelter with mince pies and prosecco away from the sleet and snow! Ariving at our 2pm booking we were show to our table in the busy and bustling Brasserie. Beautifully decorated with Christmas trees and a swing singer, the atmosphere was in full flow with diners enjoying both afternoon tea and eats from the lunch menu. Settling in with a glass of bubbles in hand, we were ready to enjoy the afternoon! We loved the seasonal twist on afternoon tea, with Christmas fruit cake, mince pie, festive ginger bread biscuit, yule …

Blogmas // Winter Candle Picks

It it even Christmas if you don’t light all your candles in your house and buy a dedicated Winter/Christmas candle to burn whilst you’ve got the tree up? Yeah, I thought not. I bloody love a candle. When we see people talking about candles on telly, Darren often says, you love a candle you don’t you? And I do. I love lighting them when we’re all cosy on the sofa after a day in work and how the smell fills the living room. I have a variety of Yankee Candles that I switch up depending on the time of year and some that are just for show. So, here’s a run-down of my current faves! White Winter. I actually picked this up in Aldi a while ago when the tree went up as I’ve changed our colour scheme this year to white and silver so it matches perfectly! It looks so much like a more expensive brand that I often lust after so for less that £3 I couldn’t say no! Warm Apple and Cinnamon. …

Blogmas // Your Good Skin 28 Day Review

If you’re regular around here you’ll know that I’m a huge skincare fan. I like to take care of my skin; removing my make up as soon as I get home from work and using a variety of cleansers and toners, before applying serums and moisturisers before bed. I really like giving my skin that extra layer of care and think of it as giving my skin a drink overnight to prep for another heavy layer of make up the next day! It’s something I always make time for and really have seen the benefits over the last 6 months with minimal break outs and the clearest skin I’ve had in my 29 years. And that’s saying something! At the start of November the new skincare brand, ‘Your Good Skin’ contacted me asking if I’d like to participate in their 28 day challenge their running to trial a variety of their products. I jumped at the chance as I love discovering new brand and adding my morning & night routine! Your Good Skin is an …

Blogmas // Festive Cookies Bake-along

It wouldn’t be December and Christmas time without getting into the kitchen and baking! I had a day off work to take recently so I took full advantage and got my bake on. Whilst it would make more sense to make gingerbread or mince pies, you can’t wrong with chocolate chip cookies! If you’re a long-time reader of my blog you’ll know that I love to cook and try new recipes but I’ll admit that baking is always my forte. Made using just 8 ingredients, I discovered this recipe on good old Google and it was so straight forward! I used a BBC Good Food recipe and they were delicious. Who else loves filling the house with the smell of baking, especially as it was starting to go dark and the Christmas tree lights were twinkling! I think I’ve peaked at festive spirit, all thanks to a batch of homebaked cookies! Now what to bake next weekend…

Blogmas // Jelly Bean & Pepsi Lip Balms for Kids

Looking for small gift ideas or stocking fillers for your work Secret Santa, your little Sis or even a little something extra for your best mate? Well, I don’t think you can go wrong with retro lip balms. I don’t know about you but this time of year I’m constantly reaching for my lip balm to help with chapped lips due to the cold weather. I often spot these bad boys around the tills in Topshop, so I couldn’t resist sharing then with you! Pepsi and Jelly Bean themed lips are a cute throw-back gift and they taste delicious too! Whilst I may have ear-marked some of these as gifts for my bestie’s daughters, I’m itching to put them to smell-test! You know…paint across my lips and smell the fruity flavours. I’m think you’ll get the same feeling as we did back in 1999 stood in Partners (now Ryman) smelling the masses of different gel pens!

Blogmas // Bistrot Pierre, Southport Review

A couple of weeks ago I received an email, sharing the news of a new restaurant opening in Southport, on Lord Street. I’m not sure if you know but I’m originally from Wigan and currently live in Ormskirk, so Southport is somewhere that I visited regularly as a child and it’s somewhere me and boyfriend go in the summer for ice cream and chips. But to try a new opening in the sleepy seaside town was a different way to spend our Sunday. Bistrot Pierre specialise in great value French cooking and we can confirm, that they’ve succeeded. Located mid-way along the high street, the two-floor restaurant certainly stands out and it’s homely interiors and inviting menu had us eager to give it a whirl. We arrived on a Sunday lunch-time and with rumbling bellies, three courses were calling our name! Spoiler alert; the food was goooood! We took our seats on the second floor, in a spacious window spot and with the help of recommendations from the waiter, we navigated our way through the …

Blogmas // Bedside Table Essentials

I’ll admit, I can be quite a nosey person. I love watching programmes like Cribs and Through the Keyhole (lolz) cos I like to see what’s inside a person’s house. The segment on Come Dine With Me when they go and nosey around to find incriminating stuff is my fave. So, I thought why not let you all have a peek at my bedside table during Blogmas! I love reading this posts so I find it really interesting and wonder how much of the stuff is actually used or merely placed for show…I’m think the latter. So, without further ado, here is mine! First up, you’ll notice I don’t have any books or anything to read cos who are we kidding, I’m watching Insta Stories before it’s lights out or a quick YouTube video on my phone. Whilst I lay next my boyfriend who’s doing the exact same..but watching X Box reviews or Marvel/Star Wars trailers. You’ll see that my half of the dresser/bedside table is skincare. I picked up this copper basket in Primark …

Blogmas // Kiko Milano Cosmetics First Impressions

I’ve wanted to try Kiko Milano Cosmetics for a while after having a nosey in the Covent Garden store earlier in the year, but due to the location of the store it was just too busy to even consider getting matched. So, on a day-trip up to Glasgow last month I spotted my chance and picked up a foundation and nail varnish in the Buchanon Street store. I decided to try the foundation as I’m in-between a couple at the moment after opting to use tinted moisturisers throughout the summer. But my skin needs a bit of help at the minute due to the change in weather, so a thicker base is needed. I picked up the Smart Hydrating Foundation after being matched in store. Overall, I do find the brand to be quite ‘glam’ in the sense of a lot of makeup is worn by the in-store MUA’s and despite being quite pale naturally, I was matched to a darker shade than I would generally go for. So, I actually went against the shade …

Blogmas // SW Healthy Snacks

The festive season can be quite tricky for us Slimming Wolders. I’ve spent the last 6 months taking drinks, off-plan snacks and cheat days into consideration, but Christmas signals the month of overindulgence, after-work drinks and the small bowls of Roses appearing around the house! As it stands I’m just half a stone away from target and having lost two stone, so whilst I pan to enjoy myself, it’s a case of everything in moderation! I try to make sure my cupboards are stocked with low-syn value snacks so I’m not tempted by the treats on offer in work. Anyone who works in an office will understand how lethal it can be… When I’m working my around Aldi each weekend doing the big shop, there are a few different snacks I reach for – Fresh fruit – either packets of melon or mango to eat at the weekends Grapes – such a great fruit to snack on guilt-free Pom bears – yep, coming in at around 4 syns, Pom bears are a no-brainer and they taste so …

Blogmas // Birchbox v Vogue

I’ve blogged about beauty subscription boxes many times in the past because I love the idea of receiving a variety of new products or brands to try each month. I actually receive my Birchbox through work and when I heard it was a collab box with Vogue I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the contents! This was the first Birchbox I’ve received and I was pleasantly surprised! On first impressions, I noticed the box was quite smaller than usual, so each of the branded products were sample size, rather than including full-size products. I love the red, black and gold design and the cute drawer-style design. So what was inside the November box? Benefit Hoola bronzer Seche Vite nail topper Percy & Reed volumising oil Klorane dry shampoo Birchbox make up brush cleaning tool This box appeared to be slightly more practical than I was hoping from a collaboration with Vogue. I assumed the box would have been more make up heavy, rather than everyday hair and nail products. That said, I like …

Blogmas // Real Techniques Brushes

About a month ago I signed up to Influenster, a new app to the UK that selects users to review a variety of amazing brands each month. And when I received an email telling me I’d be selected to review the November Influenster box in collaboration with Real Techniques I was absolutely made up! Whilst I love make up and often favour high street brands mixed in with premium, designer brands little and often, I’ve never tried quality brushes, always using Superdrug or Boots own brand. So I was excited to try Real Techniques and get to grips with the PowderBleu Collection! Firstly I must say they were beautifully packaged in a huge box and definitely had a premium feel. The PowderBleu collection consists of a variety of specialist make up brushes, each designed with its own specific job when applying your make up. I was selected to try four of the brushes, compliments of Influenster. The brushes are in a deep blue colour and have an angled design making them really easy to grip …

Blogmas // Xmas Gift Guide

Christmas month is officially upon us and it’s time to start panic-buying presents, wondering when it’s officially time to put the tree up and if it’s acceptable to start singing Miriah in public and spending every spare second outside of work watching xmas fims…well, as the 1st of December I declare Christmas time is officially here! I’ve decided to participate in Blogmas this December as I have so many exciting posts planned that I wanted to get live before the big day, so it kinda made sense! The majority are beauty/make up related as I’ve got lots of new purchases and gifted products I want to share with you! But, before we really get into it, let’s kick off with a good old gift guide! In my seven years blogging I’ve never done a gift guide before so it’s a first for everything. Here we go… For The Pampered Pooch I think Molly, our French Bulldog is the most important member of our household. She rules the roost and so it only feels right to …