christmas gift guide for her

I absolutely love the festive season, I’ll be playing my Christmas playlist from the start of November and a few weeks later I’ll be putting my decorations up, most probably while tucking into a jumbo sized tub of chocolates. Every year I look forward to the family coming together and enjoying each other’s company over a mulled wine or two. It can often feel like one of the most stressful times of the year when the shops are extra busy and you have no idea what gifts to get your nearest and dearest.

With Christmas less than a month away I thought I’d share some of the amazing goodies I found on  TJ Hughes* gift section. Whether it’s something to make your mum or sister feel super special, or a fun gift to make your best friend smile, hopefully there’s something here for all those lovely ladies you know.

GUCCI Bamboo eau de parfum

Everyone loves receiving a fragrance for Christmas and will probably have a wish list as long as their arm.  I’ve completely fallen in love with GUCCI Bamboo*, it’s feminine and sensual both together and with hints of Bergamont, Orange Blossom, Ylang Ylang and Sandalwood it smells absolutely divine. It’s light enough to be worn during the day, yet strong enough to be worn on an evening out. It’s such a beautiful fragrance that it will suit almost any woman.

Cluse La Boheme Nude Watch

A beautiful watch makes a wonderful Christmas gift, it’s something to keep and every time you wear it you’ll be reminded of the person who gave it to you. I think this one by Cluse looks classic and feminine, plus the neutral colour means it’s the perfect accessory to wear with any outfit. This may just be going on my wishlist, so if any of my family happen to be reading this, hint, hint!

TRU Luxury Plush Dressing Gown

I love snuggling up in a warm, soft robe on a cold winter’s evening, I practically live in one throughout December whenever I’m at home. So it was no surprise that this gorgeous soft grey dressing robe caught my eye, it’s a super soft, plush honeycomb material with a fleece lined hood and collar. I know quite a few ladies who would love to open a present and find this inside, It would make the ideal Christmas gift either on it’s own or with a pair of pyjamas and some bath treats.

Tru Flannelette Pyjamas

Speaking of pyjamas I found this pretty pink butterfly set, which would go perfectly with the dressing robe. They have piped detailing around the edge, a button front top and elasticated waist bottoms, just what you need after yet another roast dinner. They’re made from brushed, cotton flannelette which will keep you all snug and warm on a chilly winters night. I fell in love with almost every design they have in stock, so there’s bound to be one to suit everyone’s style, and at only £10 a pair they make a fab gift on their own or as a stocking filler depending on your budget.

Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream Gift Set

Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream comes in a gorgeous gift set and includes 50ml Eau de Toilette, 75ml Body Lotion and a 75ml Shower Gel, by layering all three products it will help the scent last that bit longer. This is a light, fresh floral smell, with hints of Blackberry, Grapefruit, Jasmine and Blue Wisteria and is inspired by daisies and blue skies, even down to the packaging. If you know someone who loves a light, delicate fragrance then this is the perfect gift for them.

Baylis & Harding Almond Gift Set

If you know someone who deserves to be spoilt and is in need of some relaxation, then this beautiful Jojoba and Almond Oil gift set from Baylis & Harding is just the thing for them. It contains a body wash, shower cream, soap, hand and body lotion, bath milk and bath soak crystals, literally everything you need for an at home pamper session. It looks so luxurious and would make an ideal Christmas gift.

Hair Straightening Brush

This Bauer Heated Straightening Brush is perfect for a busy woman always in a hurry to get out the door in the mornings. Instead of having to use two products, this straightens and brushes your hair at the same time. What a brilliant idea? It’s also excellent for travelling as it will take up less room in your suitcase and you can still have beautifully styled hair.

Snowflake Pyjamas and Cosy Socks Gift Set

There’s just something about having a new pair of Christmas pyjamas every year, it’s almost a must in our house, and how adorable is this gift set which also includes a pair of cosy socks to keep your feet nice and toasty too.

Merry Christmas Cushion

This novelty cushion is perfect for any room in the house, adding some festive colour to your sofa or bed. It is embroidered with the words “Merry Christmas” and surrounded by an embroidered holly wreath. I absolutely love this and can imagine squishing up to this as I open my presents and drink my favourite hot chocolate.

Christmas Reindeer Throw

Imagine how delighted someone would be to have this lovely soft festive throw to snuggle underneath when they watch their favourite seasonal film after Christmas dinner or to add some fun to their bedroom over the holidays, it’s perfect for breakfast in bed on Boxing Day morning.

Hope this has given you a few ideas if you still haven’t done your Christmas shopping yet.

What’s the one thing you’d like for Christmas this year?

*This item was very kindly sent to me for the purpose of this post, the first two photos are my own, all the rest have been used from TJ Hughes Christmas Gift section.
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imPRESS Nails

I love having my nails painted, they are part of my normal beauty routine and I’ve found some amazing brands that do actually stay on longer than a few days before they start to chip. When it comes to false nails, that’s where I get in a mess. I remember the very first set of stick on nails I tried as a teenager, the sticky bit was this tiny bit of tape and the nails literally fell off within a few hours. A few years later I gave a different set a try, this time the shape was the problem as none of the false nails seem to fit  properly around my deep nail beds.

However I think I have found a false nail winner with imPRESS Nails.

imPRESS Nails

I was very kindly send two packs of imPRESS Nails to try, one in Power Up*, a deep purple with a gold glittery option, and Swept Away*, a bold red with a black and white polka dot option, both packs look absolutely gorgeous and are right up my street.

imPRESS nails come with the sticky back already in place so no fiddling around with any glue. All I needed to do was find the right size for each nail, peel the clear tab away from the sticky backing and gently press the nail into place. It couldn’t have been any easier, I was so impressed at how simple it was and it literally took me ten minutes. The imPress Nails felt so secure, obviously false nails have advanced a lot since I tried my first set. They were still well and truly stuck on three days later, for me that’s pretty good going. The nails survived me opening packages, washing my hair, even popping out medication from the blister pack which is usually were I’d chip normal nail polish.

imPRESS Nails

I chose to apply Power Up as I think it’s a stunning shade to match my Autumn outfits, I kept turning my hand back and forth like you do when you’ve just had your nails professionally manicured. I also think Swept Away is a beautiful shade, so I’m saving that one to wear on Christmas Day. ImPress Nails are available in a vast range of colours so there’s bound to be something to suit your style. Each set costs £7.99 and you get 30 nails in each pack, so you should find a perfect match to fit. If you have a night out or special occasion coming up, maybe you just fancy having beautifully manicured nails for once without the hassle of going to a salon, then I definitely recommend imPRESS Nails. You can purchase them from Superdrug. in store or online, I’ll definitely be picking up a few more sets for some events I have over the next few months.

Items marked with a * have very kindly been sent to me in exchange for a review, all photos and opinions are my own.

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Joan Collins Timeless Beauty review

I am a huge lover of beauty products in gorgeous packaging, so it surprises me that I haven’t tried anything from Joan Collins Timeless Beauty before now. Everything has a touch of Hollywood glamour and something you wouldn’t mind taking out of your handbag for freshen ups during the day. Joan Collins first launched her luxury beauty brand back in 2014 and her aim was to inspire any woman that she can feel amazing whatever her age. So whether it’s a special treat for yourself or  gift for someone else, here are two products I think you should know about.

The Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Compact Duo* includes a Meticulous Pressed Powder and Divine Lips Lipstick together. The compact has a classic gold design which looks very glamorous, the lid has a satisfying click when you close it and the lipstick stays firmly in place in it’s own little slot, making it easy to grab them both from the bottom of your bag. There’s a small mirror which is just about the right size for touching up throughout the day. You don’t great a massive amount of powder but it is has the softest, silkiest texture to it and comes in a translucent shade making it suitable for most skin tones. There’s even a mini puff so you can pat it on easily to cover up any shiny patches while you’re out and about. I usualy apply loose powder with a fluffly brush but found this one was perfect to apply just before I took a couple of selfies, it didn’t look dry and cakey on top of makeup I’d applied that morning. The compact cost £16.00 and is suitable for even sensitive skin.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips Lipstick

The Divine Lips Lipstick came in the shade Melanie, which is a stunning, pinky plum colour, perfect for Autumn days or nights out partying. This has gorgeous gold packaging and yes it does look similar to another well known brand, but it’s the product inside that I’m wearing. The lipstick has to be the most incredibly hydrating lipstick I’ve ever tried and has a beautiful glossy finish, it goes on really smoothly and effortlessly without pulling my skin. I only needed to apply one coat as it’s highly pigmented, it’s super creamy texture also makes it  comfortable to wear and doesn’t dry out my lips. The only problem I found was that it didn’t last as long as I’d hoped, having said that I do love the lipstick a lot so I will have to invest in another shade of Divine Lips Lipstick, perhaps one that’s in a more neutral, everyday tone.

Joan Collins I Am Woman Eau De Parfum

I wasn’t too sure about The Joan Collins Timeless Beauty fragrance I Am Woman* when I first sprayed it as I usually prefer something that has a light floral smell, but the more I wore it, the more I fell in love with it. Now I’m not an expert at describing perfume so I will do my best. I Am Woman has a musky, woody feel to it, with a hint of citrus and warm florals which blend together well. It’s a perfect fragrance for the evening or a cold Autumn/Winter’s day, I do think it’s more suited for a woman rather than someone in their teens. The bottle looks absolutely beautiful sitting on my dressing table and it’s such a handy size to slip into my clutch bag for a night out, the fragrance does last for ages, I only sprayed it once and it still smelt gorgeous hours later. The 12ml bottle costs £15.00, plus there’s a 50ml bottle, and coming up to the festive season I think it would make a great stocking filler as it’s available in gift sets too.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty

Overall I adore The Joan Collins Timeless Beauty range, it definitely feels luxurious and glamorous, and one that will make up you feel very grown up indeed.

Have you tried anything from this range?

*Items in this post have been sent for the purpose of a review but all photos and opinions are my own.
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Urban Decay Naked Palette, Bary M Liquid Highlighter Drops

I wanted this month to end on a much more positive note than the last life update I wrote. In the back of my diary I’ve been writing down of all the happy moments from October as well some of the beauty products I’ve loved using over the last few weeks.

First of all, one of the best bits of news this month is that I was nominated for Most Addictive Blog in the We Are 30 Plus Awards. I honestly couldn’t believe it believe it and had to read the tweet 3 times just to make sure it was me.

I’m not sure how my makeup storage ends up in such a mess but I’ve had another good sort out. I’m now more organised after putting some old beauty subscription boxes in my drawers and purchasing a couple of clear acrylic makeup holders from Amazon, which makes it a lot easier to find things as all my products have their own home. It also means I’ve been able to see what products I have so I can start using them up and I’ve loved experimenting with makeup looks for Autumn.

The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Shower Gel

I’ve loved using The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Shower Gel, it smells absolutely divine. I bought the first bottle literally as soon as it came in to stock then luckily for me a few weeks later I found I’d got a £5 loyalty voucher to spend, so I treated myself to another one. It’s a thick creamy consistency which lathers up really well and it’s extremely moisturising on my skin. Perfect for a shower anytime of the day during Autumn.

The Body Shop Oils Of Life Sleeping Cream

If you’ve read my last post you’ll already know how much I’ve enjoyed using The Body Shop Oils Of Life Sleeping Cream. It’s packed with 3 Precious Seed Oils and a powerful blend of 7 essential oils, it smells amazing and is beautiful to use. It’s a light creamy, gel consistency and absorbs in quickly, I’ve been using this every night before bed and the following morning my skin feels so soft and looks radiant. Just the thing I need in my beauty routine during the colder months.

Barry M Liquid Chrome Highlighting Drops

I’ve never totally got on well with liquid highlighters until I came across these ones from Barry M. The Liquid Chrome Highlighting Drops are simply incredible, they come in a glass bottle with a pipette applicator making it easy to use. I apply a small drop onto the back of my hand then dot it across my cheek bones and blend it in with a beauty sponge. It dries quick, giving off a stunning glow, making it quite possibly the best highlighter I’ve ever had. They’re available in 5 different shades and cost £6.99 each, so super affordable.

An walk in the woods on an autumnal day

A walk in the woods on an autumnal day

What ever the weather I love getting out for a walk in the woods, getting some fresh air and away from the computer for a while. Adrian and I have made this a regular thing and been on some extra long walks this month, it seems even more fun wrapping up warm and exploring somewhere new, having no particular route to take. We’ve even been taking a flask of tea and a packet of biscuits, just to keep our energy levels up of course.

October and Halloween Fun

Wednesday Addams Makeup Look

It wouldn’t be October without mentioning Halloween and this year I can actually say I’ve been enjoying it so far. We’ve added a few little touches around the home such as candles and fairy lights, the Halloween music has been on and we’ve watched a couple of fun spooky movies (nothing too scary!) I’m so proud of myself for making it to a Halloween party in fancy dress, who knew I’d have so much fun.

What things have you enjoyed this month?

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Wednesday Addams Fancy Dress

I am so pleased I made it to the Halloween Party, yay! This is the first real Halloween Party I’ve been to because I’ve had a real fear of masks for years, I’ve been working with a counsellor to get to the bottom of things and it has been extremely hard work. I’m not completely over it but when a group of my friends suggested we all got together for Halloween I thought it’d be a great idea, even if it was a real challenge. We’ve all had the same fear, so it was nothing too scary, just a load of fun, and I am so bloomin proud of myself for going.

I’m sure my outfit is not the best in the world but the fact that I even got out the door is a huge leap for me. I haven’t decided whether I look scary or simply hilarious, but either way, I thought I’d share a few pics with you.

Wednesday Addams Fancy Dress Costume

A few years ago I dressed up as Witch, my friend brought her two children round who were also dressed up as cute little witches. Does that count as a Halloween party? This year I chose to dress up as Wednesday Addams from the film The Addams Family. I’m not brave enough to dye my hair black so as you can tell I am wearing a wig which I picked up from Amazon, I also managed to pick up the dress and tights from there too and the whole outfit cost around £20.

Wednesday Addams Makeup Look

Wednesday Addams Makeup Look

The makeup up was done by Rhian who runs A Touch Of Pink Beauty, she is a mobile beautician with over 10 years experience and offers a range of different treatments from a facial or a massage to a manicure or pedicure. It’s much easier having someone come to the house as I can’t get into a lot of the beauty salons in my area, but I’m always a bit nervous before they arrive. Rhian put me at ease straight away with her calming personality, we also had a good laugh about life in general so that may have helped. We’d already discussed what look I was after so she’d time to prepare, I didn’t want to sneak a look until she had completely finished. Rhian used Front Cover powder and pen for the eyemakeup and Special FX for the face and lips. It was a total shock seeing myself wearing a black wig, looking deathly pale with black lipstick but I must say I think she has done an amazing job.

I ended up having a wonderful night out with my friends, enjoying their company, a few sweet treats and the Halloween CD playing in the background.

Are you doing anything for Halloween this year?

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