Wednesday, 16 December 2015
I received a bottle of Forestglow Mulled Wine free of charge, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Well, it's not every day I get something quite as interesting as this to review, so obviously when I was approached by the lovely Camilla to try it, I absolutely jumped at the chance!
This is a very special mulled win which is based on old recipes making it full of traditional spices with added fruit and berries. It can be heated slightly in a pan or mulled wine warmer to provide a hearty drink during the cold winter months but can also be enjoyed cold if that's your preference. Forestglow also comes in two delightful flavours - either with a hint of citrus fruits, or with a hint of red berries. This one has the hint of citrus.
The first thing I noticed when I received this, was the gorgeous artwork on the label. It really is a very pretty design and very much captures the essence of the mulled wine itself.
The bottle is sleek and the lid, which is corked, is easily removed and replaced - something which I was really pleased to discover!
As soon as the lid is removed, you're met with a gorgeous, hearty, warm fruity smell which automatically starts warming the cockles and tempting the taste buds. You can definitely pick out the spices too. When poured into a glass, it's a beautiful deep burgundy colour and looks like a super rich drink. I tried it straight from the bottle rather than warming first, but it's up to you how you choose to drink it.
This is like nothing I've ever tasted before, and at a whopping 15%, it nearly blew my socks off ...but in a good way! All the spices are there to taste and I'm sure I could pick out a hint of cloves and maybe cinnamon as well as the punch of the citrus. From the first sip my insides began to warm and I began to understand why it was named Forestglow as you really do feel like you're glowing from the inside. A very hearty and full bodied drink which is great for sharing and perfect for warming from the inside out.
It costs £14.90 to purchase a bottle from Freyja's Wines.
Please feel free to check out the Forestglow website for further information about the how this blend was created and learn more about the unique flavour.
You can also follow Forestglow on Twitter to keep up-to-date with all the latest happenings.
Thursday, 26 November 2015
It's been a long time since I've used any kind of brushes to apply my make-up, generally preferring to just use my hands, but I decided after trying the brush for BB cream, it was time to sample other brushes to see if they gave a better finish.
Please don't be mislead, when it says a 6 piece brush set, you actually get 5 brushes and a neat cotton pouch to keep them safe and sound, hence the 6 piece set. Included are brushes for blush, concealer, eye shading, angled eyeliner and a lash & brow groomer. Each of these brushes feature bamboo handles, have recycled aluminium ferrules and cruelty free taklon bristles which are extremely soft.
As I mentioned earlier, these brushes come in a handy cotton pouch which excited me more when I noticed it also has a neat little pocket on the back too .....
The crushes are the perfect size for the jobs in hand and as the bristles are so soft, they don't drag the skin but give a really lovely finish to the make-up. The angled eyeliner brush was most useful to help practice a few of the in season looks and made the job a whole lot easier ...my daughter in particular loved this one! The blush brush is a great size to get a good amount of blush over the apples of your cheeks and my absolute favourite, the lash & brow grooming brush as it's perfect to give those lashes just the look you want and separates the lashes extremely well.
I highly recommend this set and reckon that every woman should own them.
The EcoTools 6 Piece Brush Set costs £14.99 and is available to buy from My Pure.
I received Balance Me Luscious Lips free of charge from My Pure, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
It's getting to the time of year when all the Christmas parties start to roll in, and if you're anything like me, normal, everyday lippies seem to dry my lips out making them look unattractive and feeling incredibly sore. It's around this time that I reach for the lip balms but often crave a bit of colour. That's where this gorgeous Luscious Lips comes to the rescue. I really love the packaging as it not only made me feel a bit special, but it would also make an ideal stocking filler! The tinted lip salve contained inside comes in Ruby Red and contains Shea, Mango and Cocoa Butters to help plump, soften and protect your lips against the elements. It also contains Coconut Oil which helps soothe and hydrate.
The tube has an angled head with a small hole making it very easy to apply a decent layer of colour and it helps give really good coverage too. Gently squeeze out the required amount and spread over lips. I immediately noticed that it had a slight minty taste when I applied it which impressed me no end as past experiences have taught me that organic lip products tend to taste a bit meh ...not this one though! It glides on really well and you definitely get instant hydration making lips feel nourished, moisturised and fresh as a daisy. There's also no sticky afterfeel, just a lovely smooth high shine effect.
It's a bit difficult to see the colour well from my pic but the shine you get is fantastic and with just a nice wash of colour, this can be worn either alone or over your favourite red lippy to give it a high shine finish. Being gloss, it only lasted a couple of hours on my lips but that may be the sheer amount of tea I drink, so it did need re-applied quite a few times throughout the day. The handy sized tube means that it will fit in your handbag without too much trouble so you'll always have it handy to top up the colour when needed.
Overall I really loved this product and would have no hesitation in purchasing this myself. I would certainly like to see a few more colours added to this range.
Balance Me Luscious Lips comes in a 10ml tube and is contained in a gorgeous triangular box. It costs £12 and is available to buy from My Pure.
Tuesday, 24 November 2015
You may remember a while ago I introduced you to some of the wonderful jewellery inspired tattoos from Azzy London (click here to jog your memory). I have now been lucky enough to receive a sample of these amazing tattoos in return for an honest review.
The tattoos arrived in a very attractive black cardboard envelope decorated in fancy gold writing but with a clear window so you can see what you've bought. I received some gorgeous white tattoos which are perfect for the winter season.
As you can see, there are various designs and they vary greatly in size so you can choose whichever takes your fancy. Once you've chosen your tattoo, follow the simple instructions which can be found on the back of the tattoo sheet .......
You simply cut out the one you want, decide where on your body you'd like to place it then apply the tattoo to your skin and wet the backing paper with a sponge before removing it, leaving behind a wonderful temporary tattoo which should last around 7 days, depending on your activities and use of body lotions etc.
I applied one to my finger and another to my inner wrist ....
For me, these were so simple to apply it was almost impossible to go wrong and the effect is really stunning! I did worry that the white wouldn't show too well on my pale skin, but as you can see, they show up perfectly and add that little 'something extra' to any outfit but without having to live with it forever .....although I'd be pretty happy to have either of these designs permanently!
Despite bathing daily and doing any amount of dishes, both tattoos still lasted between 5 and 7 days which I thought was pretty darn good!
These are ideal to add a little bit of glam to any outfit and with those Christmas parties soon to be underway, they're the perfect accessory. Take a wee look at the Azzy London website where you're sure to find something that takes your fancy.
In need of a top-up for your make-up bag? Well now's the time to grab some goodies as Yves Rocher are offering up to 60% off a whole selection of products for Temptation Days.
Or why not treat yourself to this gorgeous Eau de Parfum which you can bag for an amazing £20 instead of the normal price of £50 - that's a whopping £30 off!!
There's a whole host of products ranging from shower creams to cosmetics currently on offer, and these offers are available from Monday 23rd November through to Monday 30th November so you've plenty time to grab those bargains and stock up. Or if it's stocking fillers you're after, there's also plenty of their much loved products available at unbelievably low prices so what are you waiting for??
As if that's not enough, why not try your luck with the Yves Rocher Christmas online giveaway. There's daily entry available until the 4th January when 170 lucky winners will be chosen to bag up to £10 000 worth of gifts - now that's gotta be worth a try, right? Simply click on the pic to enter .....
Tuesday, 17 November 2015
Title: Finish Him (The Games of Love, #3)
Author: Deanna Dee
Genre: new adult romance
Release Date: November 17, 2015
Sonya Black never expected a petty sibling quarrel could lead to her sister being drugged. Overcome with guilt, Sonya vows to bring the jerk to justice. When she dives into her own investigation, she lands belly up in the company of Jaxon Nyles, the security guard who may have all the answers.
But being a detective isn’t as easy as Sonya thinks. On top of that, Jaxon always seems to be in the right place at the right time. Is he a suspect, or is he falling for her? More important, is she falling for him?
The round has begun. Who will flirt? Who will win? Will hearts break in the process?
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27231488-finish-him
With a complex pressing of buttons, the screen goes dim, and my opponent explodes into a fountain of blood and innards. Take that, pixels. The familiar zing of a victory glides through my blood, and it’s all I can do to keep the smirk off my lips. I haven’t been on Thanksgiving break for three hours, and already I’m kicking ass at video games and racking up the bragging points.
Dawn mutters a string of unintelligible syllables. It’s too bad not everyone’s having as good a time as me. “I will defeat you, Dwarf.”
I hit X on my controller to bring us back to the character selection screen. Dawn is the GM, Game Master, of the Marshalls and Magics campaign our group has going, and I play a dwarf. Possibly, she thinks calling me by my race will unhinge me enough for her to win a round. Not likely. “Yeah, yeah. Pick a character.”
Dawn sighs and selects Kerdwin, a random character who appeared in one of the side stories ten years ago. His combos are weak, and his powers are weaker. I keep all this to myself. Dawn pulls no punches during M and M. It’s not my fault if she’s bad at selecting characters in Bloodrage Anarchy: Silver Edition…or any other edition, really.
“Good choice,” I say instead and, with automatic movements, navigate three down and two over to Dalara, warrior princess of the outer realm of Simenia. The screen goes dark for the loading process, and our characters appear on the top of a narrow mountain. Lightning arcs overhead, and drums pound a war beat.
Round One, the game’s automated voice, which sounds like a constipated ogre, says. Kerdwin stands in a pathetic pose Dawn probably knows a name for. Dalara also stands in a pose she would know, but hers looks kick-ass and involves balancing on the balls of her feet and swaying. FIGHT! The constipated ogre bellows his call to arms.
Constipation or not, the call is all I need. I send Dalara into a flying kick and knock Kerdwin backwards. Next, I close the distance to execute Dalara’s strongest combo, a series of kicks and punches that will result in Kerdwin flying across the screen.
“Damn you.” Dawn blocks, breaking my combo. She jumps back until there’s an entire screen of distance between us.
Unfortunately for her, the reprieve will be slight. I regain my feet and go into attack mode, pressing forward twice and then the A button to activate a special attack. Dalara says something understandable only by the people of some tiny country in Asia, and dark flames erupt from her hands. I do this twice more, and Dawn’s life bar drops to a quarter remaining. She ducks my fourth attempt, leaps my fifth, and comes at me, getting through my defenses and landing a punch. The tip of my health bar turns red.
Oh hell no. That shitake will not fly. “Nice.” I send a high kick into Kerdwin’s face and follow with a punching combo. Kerdwin sways on his feet, and I shoot more black flame. “But not nice enough.” Dalara shifts to her ready stance. Kerdwin falls, and the game constipatedly announces my victory. Vacation has never been sweeter.
“Rah!” Parker screams. He’s sitting across the room on my bed, and somehow, he still almost makes me go deaf. “Excellent! Continue! Piff the Eviscerator desires more bloodshed!”
Dawn’s character staggers to his feet, and Dawn and I exchange the kind of sideways glance gamers use when they don’t want to take their attention from the screen. Parker plays an illusionist mage in M and M and, because he’s Parker, has named his illusionist mage Piff the Eviscerator.
“Silence, Gnome,” Dawn says in her intimidate-everyone-but-Parker voice. She’s probably hoping the boy will one day have enough sense to fear her and be quiet.
“Eviscerate!” Parker punches the air. “Blood!” However, that day is not today.
I check the clock on my phone for the tenth time in the last five minutes. Jaxon must really want to apologize for what happened at Fantasmic’s. There’s no other reason for him to choose Kransten’s, an actual sit-down restaurant, for this lunch. I’m not complaining. This is an ideal atmosphere for the informal interrogation I spent the better part of yesterday preparing. I suffered for my obsession by having homework to do until almost midnight, but it was worth it. As a bonus, I got to hide in my room and avoid my family.
A black car pulls into the lot. It parks facing me one spot over, and Jaxon gets out. He’s wearing a black jacket, black jeans, and black boots.
My brain raises the red warning flag, and my insides dance a little. The all-black get-up is understandable in his line of work, but he’s wearing it outside the club. He’s a bad boy. I shouldn’t be here alone with him. I plug my key back into the ignition but can’t bring myself to turn it. Dawn dresses in all black, and she’s one of my best friends. Clothing choice is no reason to blow Jaxon off. Besides, his outfit doesn’t change how much I need information. I put my keys away and get out of my car. The late fall air hits my skin and works its calming magic. I’m in a public place. If Jaxon tries anything, there are security cameras and restaurant employees. Everything will be fine.
“Hey.” Jaxon stops beside me and meets my gaze with sparkling eyes.
My internal stone shield cracks the tiniest bit. Bad people’s eyes don’t glitter with the joy of life. “Hey.” I scuff my sneaker against the blacktop. Maybe he’s not a dangerous psychopath. Never mind he’s given no signs of such. “Nice eating choice.”
“Thanks.” He gestures to the restaurant. “Shall we? I’m starved.”
I nod, and we meander toward the building with an arm’s length between us. Jaxon doesn’t try to get close to me or act in any way threatening. He maintains his distance, and the sparkle stays in his eyes. In other words, he’s a gentleman.
At the restaurant, he holds the door. So more than the clothes follow him from the workplace. I thank him and get the next door. Jaxon doesn’t object with some lame chauvinistic argument. He goes in and stops beside the host desk.
I follow. The place hasn’t changed since my last visit a few months ago. Kransten’s is American. There is no other word for it. The décor is of either sports teams or rock bands. The tables are simple wood. There’s a bar with a TV, and the floor is tile. The lighting is recessed, giving the place a dark feel despite all the windows. As I noted earlier, it’s an ideal place for an informal interrogation.
A hostess comes over and asks if we want a booth or table. Jaxon defers to me, and my snap bad-boy judgement sinks farther into the corner of my mind. He’s not controlling or dominating. I opt for a booth, and the hostess leads us to one, sets down menus, and tells us our server will be right over.
Author Bio and links
Deanna Dee is strictly human and does not, to her knowledge, own a hyena. She lives by the sea, which she takes full advantage of in the summer time. People, reading, and pop culture make up the shameless downtime of her life. The rest of it is writing, and she’s okay with that.
Thursday, 12 November 2015
Today I'm hosting the lovely Deanna Dee on my blog to tell us what inspired the songs for her new novel, Finish Him. It's over to you Deanna.
The Songs of Finish Him
The Songs of Finish Him
Sometimes authors hear songs in their heads while writing a book. For me, this wasn’t exactly the case with Finish Him. More accurately, there are songs that inspired parts of the book or were mentioned in the book that have a greater significance than a name drop or borrowed quotation. The fact that these songs didn’t stay with me throughout the writing process, though, makes them no less powerful. Ladies and gents, I give you the songs behind Finish Him.
Mortal Kombat Theme song
In the book, the video game Bloodrage Anarchy is most closely based on the real video game Mortal Kombat. Thus, this list would not be complete without this song. It fits Mortal Kombat perfectly with its fast-paced percussion. It also helps that I picture the battle sequences from the MK movie when I hear it. Bloodrage Anarchy is much the same, and if I were to write a theme song for BA, it would be similar to MK’s.
I Drove All Night (Cyndi Lauper)
This song comes on the radio at the beginning of chapter 9. Sonya is making a very late-night drive to a club where she intends not to do club things. I initially added it for humor and irony, but I really like how the song fits the chapter.
Poker Face (Lady Gaga)
This song comes up at the end of chapter 9. Sonya and Parker are in Denny’s at two in the morning, and Sonya is talking about how she’s good at hiding stuff. Her exact quotation is “My poker face is better than that.” In response, Parker alludes to Lady Gaga’s song. Again, I put it in there for irony, but it fits the chapter so well. Even more, it fits the book really well. Both Sonya and Jaxon (leading man) have their poker faces up.
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
This is my all-time favorite Christmas song. (Okay, it’s tied with Carol of the Bells.) Anyway, Finish Him spans the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, ending on Christmas Day. Aside from loving this song and its message, Merry Little Christmas hits the nail on the head for Sonya and her friends with its famous line, “through the years, we all will be together.”
Mission Impossible theme song
Sonya makes a pun out of this song in chapter 3 when she embarks on “Mission Impossibly Stupid.” At this point, I can’t even feign shock that this song started as a joke but came to fit the book well. Sonya does some impossibly stupid things in this book, but most of them are to protect other people. I can’t fault her for that.
Well, I think that’s everything but a good love song. I’ve given it a lot of thought and come up blank for a ballad to describe Sonya and Jaxon. So if anyone has any suggestions after reading the book, feel free to let me know. J
Deanna Dee is strictly human and does not, to her knowledge, own a hyena. She lives by the sea, which she takes full advantage of in the summer time. People, reading and pop culture make up the shameless downtime of her life. The rest of it is writing, and she's okay with that.
Posted by Sassy at 06:00
Wednesday, 11 November 2015
I was recently sent a voucher to exchange for some fresh fish from Tesco at a small cost, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
I was really pleased to be accepted as part of this campaign for Tesco and promptly took myself off to my nearest store when I received a £4 voucher off any fresh fish. I decided to head straight for the fishmonger as although I knew I wanted smoked cod, I had no idea how to cook it etc so some advice was needed.
The fishmonger kindly wrapped me a nice piece of smoked cod which cost just over £5 and after I asked, he also told me that the best way to cook it was to place it in a dish, cover with milk and cook in the oven for around 20 minutes on Gas mark 6. He said that I'd 'know' when it was done and said that he'd see me again in a couple of weeks! When I shot him a look, he replied with "I just know you'll be back once you've tried it" - now there's confidence for you!
We did exactly as instructed and I have to say that the results were amazing! The cod cooked to perfection meaning that it just melted in the mouth but had a really good flavour to it. As I'm not a huge fish lover, my partner scored for this, although I did give it a little try and the fish really was rather lovely. He opted to team it with potatoes and peas to keep it simple and then poured the milk which coated the cod during cooking, over his meal.
I have to say that I was really impressed with the overall experience and was extremely grateful to have such a knowledgeable fishmonger to help keep me on the right tracks. There are loads of other fresh fish options available so the possibilities are endless if you're willing to try something a little different. All the fish is really fresh and the cuts are spot on! Pop along to your local Tesco and see for yourself!
Tuesday, 10 November 2015
If you're a fan of Yves Rocher, you really ought to check out there fantastic new online game! There are loads of prizes up for grabs so go ahead and try your luck.
Simply click on the link, click to participate then choose the 'Christmas beauty gift of your dreams'. You can opt for 'Sweet', 'Girly trends', '100% healthy' or 'sunny destination' then click to validate. After that, you'll be asked to input your email address then click to validate again.
The prize draw will take place on 4th January 2016 and winners will be contacted via the email address provided.
Good luck if you choose to enter ;)
Thursday, 5 November 2015
I received a Lavender Mini Pot Candle free of charge from Amphora Aromatics, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Although I really love candles, I often struggle with them as the 'dancing' flame tends to knock me a bit bandy - I've had some pretty hairy moments during Christmas carol services!
However, the older I'm getting, the more bearable they've become and with some really interesting aromas hitting the market in the last few years, I couldn't wait to give them a try.
I was sent a Lavender candle and as they're all made using pure essential oils and 100% natural plant wax, I had really high hopes. The candles are fairly small but are guaranteed to last around 20 hours. There are also larger candles available which last up to 40 hours but the smaller ones are great to try out until you find a fragrance you like since there are a whopping 16 varieties to choose from! The candle itself is ivory in colour and comes in an attractive recycled glass pot so should fit perfectly with any decor.
The candle lit without too much trouble, I sometimes struggle getting the wick to light first time, and gave off a lovely warm glow. Although I could smell the lavender before lighting, I didn't really notice it much once lit. There was a gentle fragrance but I'd probably have liked it to smell a wee bit stronger. Despite not smelling very strong, it did make myself and my daughters feel very relaxed whilst we settled to watch a dvd and I was pretty close to nodding off ....and not because the movie was rubbish! lol
Overall these make really lovely gifts and are so attractive too but I'd still have liked the smell to be a bit more noticeable. They cost £5.50 for the smaller 20 hour candles and as I mentioned earlier, they come in 16 varieties so there's something to suit all tastes.
Check out Amphora Aromatics for the whole range and check out some of their other amazing products too.
I was recently sent 3 items of jewellery from the Body Jewellery Shop free of charge, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
As they have some amazing Ear-piercing jewellery, my first choice was these very sweet Surgical Steel Heart Ear Studs - USA which I simply couldn't resist ....
These arrived in a little clear sealed bag for hygiene reasons and I have to say, I personally think they're adorable! The fact that they're made from high quality stainless steel also means that they won't agitate ears or cause any irritation. Even better is that they only cost £3.95 which in my opinion, is an absolute bargain, and that's for the pair.
My second choice was this really pretty Fake Plug Rose Earring ......
|Front of earring|
|Back of earring|
Above, I'm wearing the heart stud in my lower piercing and the rose in my second piercing and I have to say, I think they look pretty neat!
The last item I chose for review was the Ball Closure Ring & Clip In Accessory Bonus Pack .....
This is where I made my first and only mistake! I'm not exceptionally well clued up when it comes to what's available for piercings and really should have checked the thickness of this first. It is 3.2mm (8 gauge) which I personally found too thick to fit through my piercings. I tried to get it to go through my ears and when it wouldn't, I tried in my naval but sadly, it wouldn't fit in either!
As you can see, with this pack you get the ring and 5 interchangeable coloured clip-in balls in pink, green, dark blue, light blue and black. The idea is that you simply press the ball out of the ring and replace it with the colour of your choice. This isn't quite as easy as it sounds! When new, the ball closure ring can be a bit stiff and I found that using my fingers alone, I couldn't budge the ball no matter how hard I tried. I did end up getting a small tool to try and expand the ring enough to get the ball to pop out. After a few attempts, this worked a treat!
This is suitable for various piercings including virtually any ear-piercing and also nose-piercing. As I mentioned, I tried it in my naval and would say that if it fits for you, then it would look really stunning worn here, although this isn't listed on their website. The internal diameter is 14mm and the ball size is 6mm and like most of the jewellery sold on this site, it's made from surgical steel. Five different looks are achievable with this and all for only £4.50.
Overall I would highly recommend the Body Jewellery Shop for several reasons. Firstly, they have extremely competitive prices, secondly, all jewellery is made from surgical steel so you can rest assured that there will be no irritation, thirdly and most importantly, they have such an extensive range of products that you really will be spoilt for choice and on top of all that, they cater for all body piercings so there really is something for everyone! Go check them out and see for yourself.
Tuesday, 3 November 2015
I received Alva Creamy Collection Duo Eye Shadow in Smoky Black free of charge from My Pure. All opinions are my own.
I don't often wear eye shadow but had a few events to attend recently so thought I'd give it a try - especially when I spied this on the My Pure website. It's the first time I've ever tried what's described as a 'creamy' eye shadow as I usually use them in powder form. To be honest, it's the powder versions which tend to put me off as I can't help but end up with little particles of it down my cheeks and on the side of my nose which really isn't a good look. This creamy version had me curious and i absolutely loved the colours.
It comes complete with a double ended sponge applicator which is really soft and doesn't drag the skin like many cheaper versions.
It's a bit difficult to see from my picture, but this eye shadow has a really gorgeous sparkle to it and I was extremely impressed with the application. Although it looks like powder in the container, it really is creamy and glides on perfectly giving excellent coverage and most importantly, not leaving traces of powder anywhere! I didn't need to apply much to give a great effect and found it really easy to blend to achieve different looks. It also sparkles in the light which is perfect with Christmas and all those parties being so close!
I really can't rave about this enough! From the consistency to the overall effect, it is absolutely perfect and comes in some great colours so there's something to satisfy everyone.
You can purchase Alva Creamy Collection Duo Eye Shadow from My Pure at a cost of £10.41 (currently on offer saving £1.84 on full price of £12.25).