Saturday 31 March 2012

Perfume Collection Part 2 - Estee Lauder, Versace, Marc Jacobs, Herve Leger and Tommy Girl

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess
I can’t find this anywhere online to give you the composition but my friend thinks it smells mainly of oranges! I think it’s similar to this description of the new scent from The Perfume Shop: “Inspired by the warmth of the Mediterranean, a citrus floral blend with notes of Bergamot and Orange Blossom.” There is something very summery about this and it always transports me to a faraway beach! Saying that, I probably won’t repurchase it as I’ve overused it now and it's a limited edition anyway.

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Limited Edition

Versace Versus Time to Relax
I am in LOVE with this scent and I can’t find it anywhere. I got this years ago in TK Maxx for around  £5 and it really is my go to relaxing fragrance if I’m about to do something stressful! I only use it very rarely though as I don’t want it to finish!  Apparantly this is floral too and the description here says it includes freesia, apple tree blossom and hawthorn, as well as avocado, cedar, amber and sandalwood. If anyone spots a bottle of this somewhere, let me know!

Versace Versus Time to Relax
Marc Jacobs Blush
I had to buy this on ebay as I couldn’t find it anywhere else, and I think this might be my favourite perfume ever. To me, it smells just like jasmine but it also has some fruity notes such as bergamot, citrus and banana and florals including orange blossom, honeysuckle, freesia, tuberose according to this website.  It’s really rare now but I much prefer this, which is I think Marc Jacobs’ first ever fragrance, to his modern scents.

Marc Jacobs Blush
Herve Leger Avon
This is only a teeny handbag size that I purchased from ebay and although I did love it at first, now I find it a touch too strong and it lingers until the next day! It is described here as a citrus with woody notes, which I confused for musk.

Herve Leger Avon
Tommy Girl Summer Cologne 
I’ve had this for years and it’s such a big bottle that it’s never ending! I don’t even know if you can still buy this but here it's described as a floral fragrance. It is a bit too sickly for me and I only wear it in summer, but if anyone wants it let me know and they can have it for a few pounds as it is impossible to get hold of!

Tommy Hilfiger Tommy Girl Summer Cologne
This isn’t even an exhaustive list; for example, I always go back to Lancome Miracle and Davidoff Cool Water, I sometimes throw in some YSL Elle and I’m really keen to try out more high street perfumes such as one from Zara I really like.

Phew! What are your favourite perfumes right now? And which are the ones that you just keep going back to?

Tuesday 27 March 2012

Boux Avenue opening at the Bullring Birmingham

Last Thursday saw the opening of Boux Avenue in Birmingham's Bullring, the ninth store in the chain owned by Dragon's Den star Theo Paphitis.  If you haven't heard of Boux Avenue, the stores sell lingerie, nightwear and even beauty products.

A host of bloggers and journalists were there to get an exclusive look at the store before Theo cut the ribbon. The store itself is spacious with a huge range of underwear as well as cute nightwear, swimwear, slippers, beauty products and boudoir accessories. I was really impressed with the size range (the bras go from 30A-40H), the customer service, the styles and colours on offer, the bra fittings and the luxurious changing rooms complete with three light settings (day, dusk and night). If you can't find the size you're looking for, there are even drawers out on the shopfloor arranged by size so you can easily see what's available.

I got to meet some wonderful bloggers there too including the gorgeous girls from Intrinsically Florrie, Oh ReallyHaute Future, Emily Jayne and I Am NRC. After a drink, a browse and chat with these ladies and the very friendly staff, I did manage to get a picture taken with Theo himself too!

Just a few pictures here, as you can see I somehow took lots of pictures of the cosmetics and only one of the underwear, although you can see the full range online here.

Outfit shot taken by Florrie 

Big thanks to Fluorescent PR for putting on a great event.

Friday 23 March 2012

NOTD: Black rainbow glitter disco nails

How well do these go together? The black is an ancient one from Claire's Accessories, the rainbow glitter topcoat is Technic Carnival, the infamous near dupe of OPI Rainbow Connection. The Technic nail polish is part of my giveaway so be sure to enter and be in with a chance of winning!

Monday 19 March 2012

My Perfume Collection Part 1 - Chanel Chance, Armani Code, Per Una, Versace Bright Crystal and Lanvin Marry Me

So at last count, it seems I have ten perfumes on the go. Some I use everyday, some I save for special occasions, and some are old favourites I can’t get rid of. Here’s the rundown.

Lanvin Marry Me
This is my most recent purchase and I can’t get enough of it. As I’m wary of using it up too quickly, I don’t wear it everyday. I think it’s going to be discontinued as it was really hard to get hold of even though it only came out recently. The Lanvin website says “Marry Me is a duo of exceptional ingredients, the sparkling freshness of Tunisian bitter orange and the sensuality of sambac jasmine.” Jasmine is my favourite ever floral fragrance which might explain it. I think it’s a fruity floral, and it is very sweet, with notes including peach, bitter orange, freesia, magnolia, jasmine, rose, white cedar, amber and musk. The only reason I was put off buying this is the name!! Alber Elbaz designed the Art Deco inspired bottle.

Lanvin Marry Me

Versace Bright Crystal
Another floral, this is my everyday scent. Some of the notes include pomegranate, lotus flower, plant amber, acajou and musk. Heart notes are Peony, Magnolia and Lotus Flower, top notes are Yuzu, Ice Accord and Pomegranate and base notes are Acajou, Plant Amber and Musk. I love it, although the bottle is so heavy.

Versace Bright Crystal
Per Una EDT
My everyday scent for slightly less important days and a surprise winner. Everyone always comments on this mistaking it for either Chanel or Dior but this is actually a bargainous £6 for this mini Marks & Spencer fragrance.  Described as: “Flowers of magnolia, jasmine, rose and summer freesias mingle with a sensuous background of woods, heliotrope and patchouli to give added depth.” I like buying this purse sized spray to pop in my handbag. Another floral then!

Marks & Spencer Per Una EDT
Armani Code
I got this at Christmas and haven’t used it yet but I will use it once the Versace is finished. I thought this was quite musky, but I actually think it’s a floral again due to this description from Boots: “Orange Blossom is the Muse of this creation: a miracle of the nature, the quintessence of femininity. A unique creation reveals this flower's full magic and operates its metamorphosis by the incredibly soft embrace of Madagascar vanilla and a touch of honey. Sambac jasmine, from India, amplifies the radiance and elegance of this celebration of noble materials.”

Armani Code
Chanel Chance
I love Chanel but I think it’s too heavy for me to use everyday. Usually reserved for weddings etc, I really want to get this in the Eau Fraiche variation and I have had Chanel Coco Mademoiselle before. The Boots website says it contains “notes of White Musk, Hyacinth and Citron, Pink Pepper, Jasmine, Fresh Vetiver, Orris Absolute and Amber Patchouli.” It’s another floral with jasmine in; I see a pattern emerging. 
Chanel Chance

Thursday 15 March 2012

Blog giveaway – win Models Own, Technic and more

Drumroll please! I’m so thrilled and thankful for all the support I’ve received for the blog. Every comment, tweet and view makes my day and there’s nothing I love more than hearing from you wonderful people and knowing that someone is actually reading my random beauty related musings.

So, to say thank you I’m having a mini giveaway. Everything in the picture is up for grabs by one lucky lady (or gent) and has been purchased by me.

Included in the prize is the complete set of four Models Own special edition lipglosses for Diet Coke in Golden Nude, Lacquer Red, Pure Plum and Glossy Pink, three Technic nail polishes/varnishes in Jet Black, Carnival which is the infamous near dupe for OPI Rainbow Connection from The Muppets Collection and Lustre (gold glitter), 1000 multicoloured 4mm gems/rhinestones in a wheel which can be used for glamming up anything you like or nail art, a retractable blusher brush and a mini pink nail file.

To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is enter using Rafflecopter and do at least 1 of the following 5 to enter! 

Follow Bella & Robot on GFC 
Follow Bella & Robot on Bloglovin here 
Follow Bella & Robot on Twitter here
Like the Facebook page here
Retweeting the following “Win Models Own lipglosses, Technic Carnival and more on @BellaRobot check it out”

Each of the above counts as one entry and you can do as many of as little of these as you like.  The giveaway ends on Sunday 25th March at 7pm and is open to anyone in the UK.

Wednesday 14 March 2012

Wilkinsons Lipgloss and Clearasil Overnight Serum

Just a quick one today but I wanted to share my thoughts on two products I've tried out recently.

The first is a lipgloss I purchased in Wilkinsons for £1 in shade no 4 Carnation. Although it looks like a lovely pinky colour, the texture is gloopy and sticky, the scent is artificial (I can't even describe what it smells like but sweet) and it tastes of plastic. It also has the effect of clamping your mouth shut when you use it!

The next is Clearasil Overnight Serum. I had high hopes for this one but after I left it on overnight, the next morning the area I'd applied it to was extremely flaky and dry. In addition, it didn't do much to the resolve the problem even though it has salicylic acid in it.

Thankfully I didn't spend much on these two products but overall I will definitely not be repurchasing either of these. What have been your biggest beauty product fails?

Tuesday 13 March 2012

Glossybox UK March 2012 – The Harrods Edition

Like a lot of you it seems, I was silly excited about this Glossybox and couldn’t wait for it to arrive! If you look on my Twitter profile, I actually say that Harrods is one of my interests!!

I was really pleased with this month’s box, which was a sleek white glossy box (literally) rather than the usual pale pink so here are the contents for you:

Clarins Extra Firming Body Cream – 30ml
This is one that I was pleased to see, as I never spend more than £10 on a body lotion. It doesn’t smell like much but it promises to firm up skin so I’m looking forward to trying it out and seeing whether it’s worth spending a little more on body lotions.

RRP £39.50 for 200ml, £3.95 value

Narciso Rodriguez for her – 1ml
Some people are totally against receiving perfume samples, I don’t mind as the ladies on the perfume counters near me very rarely hand out samples.  This is a pretty pricey perfume but it is only 1ml, and it would have been nice to receive a bigger sample such as the very cute 4ml Fan Di Fendi bottle which some people received, but that’s just me nitpicking. I like that it’s in a proper spray atomiser and I really like the scent of this so might add it to my “Beauty to Buy” list.

RRP £55.15 for 50ml, £1 value

YSL Forever Youth Liberator Serum – 5ml
Now this looks interesting. I’ve been using two Origins serums lately and am stunned that they’ve managed to clear up my problem areas, even though that’s not their purpose. I’m looking forward to trying this out once my Origins is finished as I think serums work some miracles on skin.

RRP £60 for 30ml, £10 value

Molton Brown Heavenly Gingerlily Moisture Bath & Shower – 50ml
Really glad I got this, as Molton Brown is one of those brands which I love, but can’t justify investing so much into a shower gel. This will be a real treat, it smells lovely and I’m so excited to use it that I’m not waiting for a weekend away to try it out!

RRP £18 for 300ml, £3 value

Burberry Beauty Miniature Lip Mist Copper No 202 – 0.8g
The one that everyone’s been waiting for! I was so lucky to get the Burberry lipstick, it looks fantastic with its cool chrome case and embossed bullet that I never want to use it!  I think the shade is really wearable too so well done Glossybox!

RRP £23 for approx. 3.69g, £5 value

Approximate overall value: £22.95

If you'd like to sign up or see what it's all about, click here

Friday 9 March 2012

Marie Claire, Glamour and Red April 2012 - UK - Free Neal's Yard, Percy & Reed and Origins

I can't believe how popular the Clinique freebie post was! So to keep you guys happy, I thought I'd post on three other beauty freebies available this month.

The first is with Marie Claire UK April edition (Christini Ricci on cover) where you can get a free Neal's Yard Power Berry Daily Moisture Cream for youthful skin worth £10.50 with purchase of the £3.40 magazine. I think you might even be able to get it on the travel size edition which is £3.

Next is one that I've just bought, Glamour UK April edition (Jennifer Lawrence on cover) with a free Percy & Reed hair product. The choices are: Splendidly Silky Moisturising Shampoo, Splendidly Silky Moisturising Conditioner, Totally TLC Hydrating Mask and Quite Frankly Flawless Finishing Polish. 

I bought two copies at £2 each for the shampoo and conditioner which I've just used. The lather on the shampoo wasn't great so I rinsed three times but the conditioner is quite luxurious. Once I used my Moroccan Oil and straightened my hair it was really nice and smooth and soft so definitely give it a go. 

I've also seen that you can get a free Origins serum with April's Red magazine (Claire Danes on the cover). The gift is a 15ml Origins Mega Bright Skin Tone Correcting Serum worth £23 so that sounds like a bargain to me! Cover price is £3.90 I think.

So many magazines to choose from!! Which will you be going for?

Thursday 8 March 2012

Carmine Beauty Box – February 2012

On my quest to get involved in the beauty box phenomenon, I signed up for a Carmine Box for the bargainous price of £5!

I already reviewed my first ever beauty box, the Glossybox, here so here’s what I thought of Carmine.

Like the Glossybox and all other beauty boxes I’d expect, the Carmine box does a great job on packaging.  The outer box is really funky although maybe not as luxe as Glossybox, but who’s counting? Inside, the actual box itself is really lovely. A sophisticated black matte box with the Carmine print on the inside and pink fil Carmine logo on top, once opened, revealed the signature black tissue paper, red satin ribbon, sticker and product card.

I received an Andrea Fulerton Nail Varnish in Julia (full size), Fratboy The Balm (full size), Daniel Sandler Eye Delight in Ice (full size), Diego Dalla Palma Lipstick in 42, White Glo Professional Choice whitening toothpaste and a bonus product, Yardley London Peony Fragrance.

Andrea Fulerton
I can’t wait to use this! Andrea is a respected celebrity nail technician and I’m expecting big things from this polish! I got the best colour I could have hoped for in this lovely pinky nude.   I love nude colours as they are so wearable for work etc but I think the collection is getting a bit too big! This is a full sized 5.5ml product, RRP is £4.99.

Frat Boy
This was previously included in a Carmine box last year, so I’ll assume that it was so popular that they brought it back! I’m glad they did, as I personally don’t mind if products are repeated (although you might if you were a regular subscriber). First impressions were that the packaging is just great. Very much like Benefit but even more retro. The product comes in a card outer case and holds an opening card blusher pan with a mirror on one side and the product on the other. The blush is a very pinky colour with a touch of peach. On my medium skin tone it looked quite nice, bit it looked even better on my paler skinned friend! This is full sized and I think retails at £13. Whilst trying to find the price of this I typed in Frat Boy on ebay, check out what comes up!

Daniel Sandler
Already receiving great reviews on the internet, I haven’t tried this yet but it is meant to be really good. A loose powder, the colours are quite pale and shimmery and it suggests using them across the eyelid or mixing with water for a bolder colour. This full sized item retails at £10.25.

Diego Dalla Palma
I’ve heard other people raving about this Italian beauty brand and it is apparently very well known. I love that these beauty boxes introduce you to brands you may not have heard of and potential wonder products, and that’s their biggest plus point in my opinion. Back to the lipstick, it’s the smallest size ever, a 1.5cm bullet and 4cm in total (I don’t believe I actually measured that). The consistency is really nice and creamy, it smells like vanilla and would be perfect for the handbag. I just happened to get an odd shimmering redish bronze colour which I’m not too keen on though.  The full sized product is about £20!

White Glo
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’m really excited about using this toothpaste! I’ve been looking into buying something like this or professional teeth whitening in the last few months so this is good timing! It’s also a handy travel size which is great for packing in your overnight bag. The full sized product is about £4 from Boots and I think that includes a toothbrush and toothpicks too.

Yardley BONUS
Most beauty boxes give you five samples, this month Carmine gave us six! This little vial of Yardley Peony is tiny at 1ml but smells surprisingly nice. I know that they’ve been doing a bit of a rebrand and big marketing push on Yardley so I wasn’t surprised to see it in there. I’ll reserve judgement on whether it can ever replace my favourite perfumes but there are quite a few other scents which I haven’t tried yet.

I really enjoyed receiving this box and sampling the products inside. The nail polish is great and really wearable, the Frat Boy Balm is a very useable and useful product that I’m glad I was introduced to and the toothpaste is a real winner! I probably wont use the lipstick and the perfume will go to my aunt or mother but they are only tiny so I don’t mind. I probably won’t use the Daniel Sandler as the colour is touch too pale for my skintone, but overall I’m really happy with what I got. 

If you'd like to give it a try yourself, click here to take a look at how it works and sign up!