Saturday, 30 June 2012

My New Beauty Product Storage!

Hello! The corner where I store all my beauty products has had a make-over! It looks so much better in real life - If only I could capture it with my eyes for you, instead of with a camera. I had been wanting to change my beauty product storage for months, but could never find the right chest of drawers. As you can see, my products were taking over my room!
The white chest of drawers are from Argos and are from the Aviemore collection. They were £99.99, but I've just checked and they are now £67.99 - Bloody typical! Why does this always happen?! Anyway, I like them (I would like them a lot more if I paid £67.99 for them though). They're not solid wood, but they're still sturdy. The top two drawers hold my make-up, the third drawer holds my skincare products, the fourth drawer holds my body products, the fifth drawer holds my hair products and the sixth drawer just contains boxes and extra products. The two white wicker baskets on top of the chest of drawers, the white wicker chest next to the chest of drawers, the patterned shoe box and the bin all come from Store Twenty One via QS (I wrote a post about them here). I've even changed my make-up brush holder to try and look more sophisticated. My brushes were in a pink smiley face cup (Can you spot it amongst all the mess in the 'before' photo?) and now they are in a glass. A cup for a glass - I think I've grown up ;)

I hope you're enjoying your Saturday. I've had a headache and cramps all day, but I'm about to make fajitas and paint my nails neon orange, which should cheer me up!
Also, I've recently hit 1000 GFC readers! Thank you so much, you lovely bunch!

Update: I contacted Argos about the reduction in price days after I ordered and they've just refunded me the difference! How nice of them!

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Lemon Fairy Cakes Recipe

I've just made these yummy little treats and thought I'd post the recipe! I didn't get this recipe from anywhere specific - It's just from my general knowledge.

Lemon Fairy Cakes Recipe - Makes about 25
You will need:
200g of self-raising flour
200g of caster sugar
200g of soft butter or margarine
3 large eggs/4 medium eggs
1 teaspoon of baking powder
The rind of 1 lemon
Lemon juice (About half a lemons worth)

Lemon icing-
100g icing sugar (This will cover about 12 fairy cakes. If you do not want buttercream or plain ones, just double the amount)
1-2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons of water

Lemon buttercream (I didn't weigh these ingredients, so just use your own judgement!)-
Butter or margarine
Caster sugar
Lemon juice

1. Preheat the oven to 190C and line your bun trays with baking cases.
2. Cream together the butter, sugar, beaten eggs, lemon rind and lemon juice.
3. Add in the flour and baking powder, and beat well.
4. Distribute the mixture evenly in the baking cases.
5. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.
6. Wait until the fairy cakes are cool and then decorate with lemon icing and/or buttercream (To make the icing and/or buttercream, just beat the ingredients together).

Thursday, 21 June 2012

New Storage!

Yesterday, my mum and I went down to the square to pick up some baking ingredients and groceries. My mum wanted to go in QS, so off we went. She ended up buying a top and I bought more than I could carry! I really loved their homeware section. All of the tags for these items say 'Store Twenty One', like most of the homeware items I saw.
The large, white wicker chest with floral lining was £24.99. I'm going to use it to store my shoes. Currently, my shoes are lined up against a wall and get covered in dust easily, especially my suede heels! The white wicker bin with floral lining retails at £5, but I was only charged £2.99 (Yay!). The teal patterned, cardboard box was also £2.99. I love the colour and pattern, and it's sturdy. I don't know what I'm going to store in it yet, but I couldn't resist buying it! There are a few other designs and sizes, which I may have to buy. The small, white wicker baskets were £3.99 each. I'm going to put these on my future white chest of drawers that will hold my beauty products. In one basket, I am going to store my everyday make-up products, and in the other, I'm going to store some eyeshadow palettes, face masks, nail wraps and false eyelashes.
I just need a white chest of drawers now! All of my beauty products are out to be seen, which makes my room look more untidy than it is. The trouble is, is that I don't want to spend over £100, but cheaper draws have mixed reviews. I normally wouldn't mind if a chest of drawers were not very sturdy, but they need to store my (heavy) beauty products in.

I had to include this photo of Puddin'!

I hope you're enjoying your day!

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Crunchy Peanut Butter Biscuits Recipe

Hello! I've caught the baking bug. I made cookies yesterday (They're misshaped, but taste really good), I've just made crunchy peanut butter biscuits and I will be making a lemon cake tomorrow.
I absolutely love peanut butter, so I can't see these lasting long! I thought I'd post the recipe, so you can make them too, if you would like. I got the recipe from The Farmhouse Kitchen Baking Book. I picked it up at a charity shop a while ago.

You will need:
175g of plain white or wholemeal flour (I used plain)
125g of caster sugar
50g of light soft brown sugar
75g of softened butter or margarine (If yours has just come out of the fridge, place in a bowl and microwave for a few seconds)
4 tablespoons of crunchy peanut butter
1 medium egg, beaten
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
1 tablespoon of milk

1. Line trays with baking paper (I used 1 large baking tray because I didn't separate the mixture. I cut it into slices after it was baked) and preheat the oven to 200C.
2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter or margarine, and the two sugars.
3. Add the beaten egg a little at a time, beating well after each addition.
4. Beat in the peanut butter (Again, to make it easier, I put the peanut butter in the microwave for a few seconds).
5. Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into the mixing bowl.
6. Fold the flour into the creamed mixture, add the milk and beat. Add a little more milk, if necessary, to achieve a soft dropping consistency.
7. Place onto the baking tray(s). I covered the whole baking tray, but if you want to bake separate portions, place teaspoons of the mixture about 7.5cm/3 inches apart on the trays and flatten each one.
8. Bake for about 10-15 minutes. Allow the biscuits to firm up on the tray, then turn out onto wire trays to cool. I then cut mine into slices.

The recipe states that it will make around 30 biscuits. I made 20 large biscuits, but I could easily cut them in half again and make 30-40.
They're similar to a flapjack consistency and are really delicious!

Please let me know if you make them!
Happy baking!

Wordless Wednesday

Friday, 15 June 2012

Cornflour in Beauty Products - Save Money!

ELF Mineral Booster, Lush Vanilla Puff Dusting Powder, Batiste Nude Dry Shampoo

Tesco Cornflour 250g - 69p

After reading this post, I went and had a look at some of my powdered beauty products. The three products above, which I love, all have the main ingredient in common: Cornflour! In fact, the Batiste Nude Dry Shampoo only contains cornflour and talc. 'Zea mays starch' is another name that cornflour (or 'cornstarch', if you live in America) is called.
So, with a box of standard cornflour (250g from Tesco will set you back 69p), you can mattify your face, soften your skin and use it in your hair as a dry shampoo. The Batiste Nude Dry Shampoo packaging is useful, so I'm just going to refill that. I don't think it will completely replace my Lush Vanilla Puff Dusting Powder though, because I love the scent of it. However, I could easily find some vanilla essence and pods.
And with the rest of the box, you can thicken your gravy ;)

Thursday, 14 June 2012

EcoTools Bamboo Bronzer Brush from eBay

After buying the EcoTools 5 Piece Brush Set from eBay and writing a post about it here, I ordered the Bamboo Bronzer Brush. I bought it from here and it cost £4.96, including P&P. Boots are selling it for £9.99, so that's quite a saving!
It's big, it's chunky and it's very soft! It also washes well.
After talking to a few people and comparing my brushes to the ones in Boots, I think the eBay ones are real. Even if they're not, they're great quality!

New Additions

Meet numbers 11 and 12 of my cacti/succulent family! I've just bought these from Lidl for £3.49 each. I have ones similar to the second one, but I don't have anything like the first. Some people think cacti are ugly, but I really like them. Their spines are only protecting them! And when they flower, they are beautiful. 
I now want to buy some plants that are not cacti. I've grown flowers in the past, but they're so delicate. I may start looking at orchids - They're pretty.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Book Reviews: Angel and Angel Fire by L.A. Weatherly

I came across these books in the library a few days ago. I'd never heard of them before. I looked at their Goodreads ratings and reviews when I got home and found that they were fairly positive. I dislike the covers and find the titles unoriginal, but the actual books are good. As they say, you shouldn't judge a book by its cover! They're similar to The Hunger Games and Divergent series' - The world is different from our own (well, one aspect is), the main characters are adolescents and there is a mix of action and romance in them.

What are they about? There are angels in our world that have come from their own in order to survive. To survive, they need energy, so they feed off of human auras. This leaves the humans feeling incredibly happy and believing in angels, but they also become sick. They could acquire depression, schizophrenia, cancer etc. As you can probably guess, these angels are not your stereotypical 'good' ones. There are a number of people who kill these angels to protect humans and they are called Angel Killers (AKs). One Angel Killer, called Alex, crosses paths with a girl named Willow. She is a half-angel. He has never come across a half-angel before because they are not supposed to exist. It is thought to be impossible for humans and angels to breed. The first book follows Alex's and Willow's relationship while they also try to destroy the angels. The second book has the same basic storyline, but new characters and world-saving missions are brought in.

My thoughts: I enjoyed them! On my Goodreads profile, I gave the first book 4 stars out of 5 and the second book 5 stars out of 5. I really enjoy the mix of action and romance in books. The action keeps me entertained and the romance connects me to the characters, wanting to read on. I enjoyed the second one a little more because there are more characters and action in it. In my opinion, they're not as good as The Hunger Games and Divergent series', but they're pretty close. They do contain more romance than action in, especially the first book, so keep that in mind. Also, the second book is 700+ pages, which some people may not like. Some people prefer shorter books.

The third book is going to be released on the 1st October 2012 - Not long to go! I will definitely be reading it.

The other books I checked out of the library are:
Reckless by Cornelia Funke
Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella and
The Sacred Vault by Andy McDermott (I've enjoyed a couple of the other books in the series)

I've also just bought:
The Help by Kathryn Stockett and
Evermore by Alyson Noel (I've only bought the first book in the The Immortals series to see if I like it. If I do, I will be purchasing the rest!)

I also want to read the Maze Runner and Inkheart series'.

Have you read any of these books?

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Nails of the Week

I took this photo on my phone last night and was going to take better quality photos this morning, but my nails smudged overnight! I hate it when that happens. I cannot be bothered to redo them and I am not taking photos of smudged nails, so it was this photo or nothing.
Anyway, these will be my nails for the next week. I like doing spots on my nails because they're easy to do! The purple base is Barry M Boots Limited Edition, the pink spots are Barry M Bright Pink and the turquoise spots are China Glaze For Audrey.

I hope you're enjoying your day! I'm about to get dressed and head down to the library to check out a load of books. I'm so excited! Sad, but true.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

University - One (academic) year in

I have finished my first year of university! I finished my final assignment last night and I am handing it in tomorrow (As well as giving my sister and our friend a tour - They're entering their second year of sixth form, so need to start making university decisions). I have completed 12 assignments: 7 essays, 3 exams, 1 practical and 1 presentation. My grades have been good and so much better than I thought I could do. I haven't found the lectures any harder than my A Level classes, but there's a lot more independent learning, and it has taken a great deal of motivation to write my essays! I didn't believe I could handle university, but I am beginning to. I know my second and third years are going to be incredibly harder, but I'm trying not to think about them just yet and enjoy my Summer. Overall, I like university. I have greatly improved my writing skills and it is giving me confidence - Academic confidence and confidence around other people.
I don't know what else to say! Sorry for such a short post! If you have any questions about university or my experience, you can leave me a comment or email :)

Saturday, 2 June 2012

New Favourites

I thought I'd start writing 'New Favourites' posts instead of 'Current Favourites' or 'Monthly Favourites' because my favourites stay the same. These products are the products that have entered my 'favourite products' category. If you would like to see my other current favourites or monthly favourites, just read my previous posts :)

Treacle Moon - One Ginger Morning Shower Gel 500ml - £2.99 from Tesco
This smells like lime Starbursts! I love it so much. So much so that it's up there with the Original Source Lime Shower Gel - My all time favourite.

Palmers - Cocoa Butter Formula Lotion 200ml - £3.77 from Boots
I don't regularly moisturise my body, but when I do, I like an intense moisturiser. I normally prefer body butters, but this lotion is thick and moisturises just as well. The scent may be too sweet and heavy for the Summer months, but I still love it.

Exfoliating gloves - Mine were a couple of pounds from Superdrug, but you can get these from any Supermarket.
I've been using these to exfoliate my face a couple times a week and my face has never been so smooth and soft. Then, at night, I use an intense moisturiser or balm. It's doing wonders for my skin.

The Body Shop - Hand Cleanse Gels 60ml - £2.50 each
I've reviewed these here. Beautiful, true to name scents that are not alcoholic. Love them!

Lush - Vanilla Puff Dusting Powder 50g - £4.50
I've reviewed this here. I've mainly been using this as a dry shampoo, and it works brilliantly. The powder is fine, so it doesn't leave you with grey hair, and the scent is of a 'grown up' vanilla.

The Body Shop - Vitamin E Moisture Cream 50ml - £9
Every morning, before I apply my concealer, I use this under my eyes. It's light and sinks in well. I prefer using pots of moisturiser for some reason.

The Body Shop - Vitamin E Intense Moisture Cream 50ml - £11
I've reviewed this here. You know I said I use an intense moisturiser just now? This is the one I've been using. It feels like silk, absorbs well and leaves your skin incredibly soft.

ELF - Small Mineral Booster 5.1g - £5
I've just checked their website and this has increased in price! The small pot used to be £3.50 and the large pot was £5, but now the small pot is £5 and the large pot is £7. This leaves my skin looking matte and feeling soft, but I don't know if I'm going to repurchase it now. I think I'll repurchase it when they have a code floating around.

Figs & Rouge Balms - Pomegranate 17ml and Rambling Rose 8ml - £4.95 and £3.50 from Super Smoocher (Feel Unique and Boots also sell them)
I've reviewed these here. Beautiful packaging, delicious scents and very moisturising. They are also 100% natural and organic.

Have you tried any of these products? Let me know!

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