Sunday 20 October 2013

Bistro 1847 Launch - Birmingham

Bistro 1847 recently opened in the Great Western Arcade, Birmingham. A vegetarian restaurant named after the year the Vegetarian Society formed, the Birmingham outpost is the first to open outside of the existing two outlets in Manchester. 

Heading over to the official launch for champagne and canapes, I met up with Ahmed from Dine Birmingham to try out a few nibbles. With music provided by the wonderful Rioghnach Connolly, we sampled quality food including beer battered halloumi, mushroom and liquorice pate and posh cheese and pineapple sticks.

The menu looks fantastic. From mediterranean mezze sharing platters to goats cheese tarts, tempura, cheddar brulee and some decadent desserts, every item on the menu is imaginative and has been carefully considered.

There's also a good selection of original cocktails such as the Spiced Caramel Apple, Black Mexican and Gin Tea to enjoy whilst listening to the live Jazz that will be playing on the second Thursday of the month.

Big thanks to Damien and Alex and I can't wait to come back and try out the menu!

Friday 18 October 2013

MAC Amplified Creme Lipstick Chatterbox

Mac Amplified Creme lipsticks have a moisturising cream finish and a vivid colour. Whilst looking for Candy Yum Yum, I picked up this great little shade and I'm so glad that I did.

MAC Amplified Creme Lipstick in Chatterbox available here

Chatterbox is a beautiful vivid pink, a real classic in my eyes. The texture is smooth and quite creamy, and it lasts ages before fading out to leave a pink stain and wears evenly too. It even works on dry lips without showing up your skin, although you might want to wear a balm underneath if you've got very dry lips just for comfort.

Whilst on some darker skins it comes out a light pastel, on me it comes out a bubblegum pastel pink, verging on Barbie pink. In the swatches you can really see the red undertones.

Long wearing, highly pigmented, quite matte and with an even application, these are a great formulation for wearable, everyday lipstick that you can eat and drink in.

Daylight swatch

Studio Light Swatch

At £15, it's a mid range price point, with high street lipsticks costing up to £10-£12 and high end ones costing up to £25-30, so really it's still pretty good value for money. Don't forget to use Back 2 Mac too!

Have you guys tried Chatterbox?

Wednesday 16 October 2013

Mohdoh Mouldable Aromatherapy in Sleep

I received this product in my goody bag from the #BrumBloggerMeetUp earlier this year and I've been using it ever since.

Mohdoh Mouldable Aromatherapy in Sleep available here*

Looking at it for the first time, it's not immediately obvious what it is. However, here's the hype for you.

"mohdoh combines three therapeutic elements, proven to produce positive results; aromatherapy, play therapy and colour therapy. It is these three elements that make mohdoh such a powerful holistic therapy."

"A powerful remedy for treating everyday ailments from insomnia, travel sickness, worry and anxiety to colds and flu, lack of focus, hyperactivity, headaches and tension, mohdoh can even help those trying to lose weight or quit smoking"

The product I've got it Sleep, which is good because I really like the smell! Although it's for Sleep, it's also a really great way to relax and calm thanks to the lavender scent. 

To use, all you need to do is mould the dough for 5-10 minutes at bedtime to release the essential oils. As well as the oils inside it, the violet colour has been chosen specifically as a "calming and relaxing colour perfect for settling tired minds" and the action of moulding the dough is "play therapy".

I love the smell of this so much, I really want to try out the other scents too, especially Calm, Unwind and Breathe next.

At £4.99 I think they're really good value too and they're definitely worth the price. Which one should I try next?

Monday 14 October 2013

Monday Manicure: OPI Nail Lacquer Sparrow Me The Drama

You know you have a nail polish addiction when you find polishes that you can't even remember buying. This is one such polish. I have no idea where it came from but hey, it's in my collection now so let's go with it.

OPI Sparrow Me the Drama Nail Lacquer

OPI's Sparrow me the Drama is part of the Pirates of the Caribbean Collection. I think it came out a while ago but you can still buy it, probably for a fraction of the price.

What suprised me most about this pink polish is how wearable it is. Most pinks are girly and loud and scream "look at me!" This one however is so subtle that you could even, dare I say it, wear it to work or even an interview. A dusky, creamy, pastel pink, this is both femininie and sophisticated. I used three coats but you could easily get away with two. I think it's quite a cool tone and it really suits my skin tone, even though I've seen it work on paler skins too.

As always the quality of these polishes is fantastic, no streaking, bubbling etc.

Monday 7 October 2013

Nicky Clarke Salon (re)opening at The Mailbox Birmingham

Nicky Clarke is one of the UK's leading celebrity hairdressers. With four UK salons, a line of hair styling products and tools and an OBE to his name, as well as a host of celebrity clients including models, actors, pop stars and royalty, it's not hard to see why Nicky has built a reputation as one of the hardest working hairdressers around.

Nicky Clarke at The Mailbox salon. Image c/o Jas Sansi

When an email entitled "Nicky Clarke" landed in my inbox, I couldn't believe it contained an invitation to not only see the newly opened Mailbox salon, but to meet the hair legend himself too!

Newly opened on Level 7 of The Mailbox, the Nicky Clarke salon was previously located downstairs on Level 3.
Laura from Luxx Mint, Nicky Clarke, Sarah from The Style Floozie and Me - Image c/o Sarah

Kicking off the evening with a few bubbles, the intimate group prepared their questions ready for the Q&A. Clad in a sharp navy suit, we were introduced to Nicky before he took to the floor to answer our questions.

Advising the group on how to achieve an at-home up-do, the right way to wash hair and what to look for in products for fine or thick hair, personal style advice was on hand to the female and male members of the audience.

I had a great evening, met some fabulous people and have to say that Nicky is an absolutely lovely, down to earth guy.  This is definitely one night that I won't forget and I have to say a big thank you to Sam at Rewired and Octavia and Maria at Octavia Coates.

To check out more images of the night click here.

Friday 4 October 2013

MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation SPF 15 NW22 - Product Review and Swatches

I'm currently looking for the perfect everyday foundation, one that's not too thick and matte, dewy but with enough coverage to even out my skin.

MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation available here

I picked up MAC Studio Fix Fluid as I tried it in the shop and really liked the finish. For me, it's perfect; just the right kind of dewy finish without looking and feeling greasy.

The shade is NW22 which I think is pretty close to what I need. It's perfect for golden yellow skin tones which is great for me as the yellow in the foundation counteracts the redness around my nose and chin. It's maybe just a touch too yellow fot me but it's still a good enough match to be wearable.

Daylight swatch

Studio light swatch

I like the creamy consistency and it's easy to apply. I use either a foundation brush or sponge and both work well. It's also really buildable so tend to go for a light base layer and then keep adding to my nose, chin and central cheek area to cover redness.

I think the coverage is a medium working up to a medium/heavy which works really well for me as the skin on my forehead and most of my cheeks needs less coverage than my T Zone, meaning that I hate to apply too heavy a foundation all over when parts of my face don't need that much coverage. It's good at covering small blemishes but you will probably need a little extra concealer for bigger blemishes and spots.

It lasts for around 7 hours and it does get a bit shiny around my nose and chin but powder helps combat this

The packaging makes it quite difficult to get the product out as it's a screw top lid that comes off and you can't squeeze the bottle as it's glass. Also, the lid gets dirty really quickly as it's a rubber finish.

It also contains an SPF15 which is great!

The downside is the smell which is pretty chalky, but at £21.50 it's really quite good value.

What do you guys think of Mac Studio Fix?

Wednesday 2 October 2013

L'Oreal Elvive Triple Resist Masque - Review

As much as I love the caramel colour my hair goes when it's been highlighted to high heaven, what I don't like is the dry straw like texture it gives to treated hair.

On my search for a good hair mask, I came across this; L'Oreal Elvive Triple Resist Masque with reinforcing serum.

L'Oreal Elvive Triple Resist Masque available here

Here's what I love about this product:

1. The size - it's a huge 300ml pot of product and at around £5, it means you can afford to slather on the product.

2. The price - £5 is pretty decent for a hair mask

3. The smell - it smells like a salon, one of my favourite smells :) 

The product itself is a glossy white and a comfortingly thick, gloopy consistency. I leave it in for around 10 minutes, just because I'd rather leave it in for longer and make sure it has time to sink in. It washes out easily and leaves hair definitely softer, smelling lovely, less tangled and is smoother after blow drying.

Overall, it's a really good value conditioning treatment that can be used every week guilt free.