Thursday, 28 August 2014

Summer Beauty - Make-up

What's in my summer make-up bag?

I don't wear a lot of make-up anyway and I like to create "le no make-up" look. Some of the products mentioned below are staples in my make-up inventory and are continuously re-purchased.

Lily Lolo Mineral Foundation in Candy Cane (It contains no bismuth oxychloride)
Lily Lolo Mineral Blusher in Rosebud
Becca eye colour powder demi matt - Chantilly
Becca eye colour powder shimmer - Lame
Herbfarmacy Melissa Lip Nurse

Wish List
Beauty Without Cruelty Ultimate Conditioning mascara
Hurraw Black Cherry Tinted Lip Balm
Lily Lolo Mineral Eyeshadow in any of their neutral shades

Is your make-up routine complicated? Do you have a make-up collection? Or are you like me and use up something before replacing or do you have several things on the go at once? Have you tried any of the products mentioned or that are on my wish list? Would love to know your thoughts.

- Louise

Friday, 15 August 2014

Summer Beauty - Body Care

As the Summer Beauty Series continues this next instalment is about my bath and body care products. I tend to use bath oils or salts and lighter fragrances during the summer months.

Bath Time - Unfortunately we don't have a shower which would have been ideal for the recent heat wave. A few of my favourite products are:

Neal's Yard Remedies Lavender Bath Salts
Neom Bath & Shower oils 
Neal's Yard Remedies Baby Soap
Spiezia Organic Lavender and Chamomile soap

Bloom Remedies Calendula and Chamomile baby eczema balm
Bloom Remedies Peppermint & Lemongrass organic foot balm

I am also using these body lotions by Neal's Yard Remedies in travel size
Neal's Yard English Lavender body lotion
Neal's Yard Rose & Geranium body lotion

I tend to use the Bloom Remedies eczema balm only on the areas that need it and a regular body lotion everywhere else. I don't always use a separate hand cream, I normally use a body lotion decanted into a travel bottle to keep by the bed or in my bag. I don't exfoliate my skin, instead I use a body brush daily before moisturising.

Wish list
Bamford Rose Bath Oil
Bamford Green Weekender
Bamford Rose Duo

I have never tried Bamford Organics before and these are some of the things I would like to try soon.

- Louise

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Summer Beauty - Skincare

I thought I would share with you my current summer skincare products. I like to keep my routine as simple as possible nowadays and these are my go to products at the moment.

I have extremely sensitive skin and non of these products have caused my skin to react which is why I have stayed loyal to them. 

I like purchasing from Naturisimo as they offer free delivery worldwide. Delivery in the UK is usually within 3-4 days which is great. 

- Louise

Monday, 28 July 2014

Summer Beauty - Hair Care

My hair care routine is pretty simple to be honest. I don't use a lot of products in my hair and I don't like it too look to over styled especially in the summer.

I like to wash and condition my hair every time I wash it which is every other day, once a week I use organic coconut oil as a hair mask applied at least 30 minutes before I wash it.

A couple of months ago I changed up my haircare routine and I am happy with what I am using now. I have my hair cut four times a year as I like to keep it longer anyway and the condition I keep my hair in I haven't had any problems with doing so.

Cleansing and Conditioning the hair and scalp

When I wash my hair I always double cleanse, the first cleanse is remove some dirt and the second cleanse I get a better lather. I only condition the mid lengths to ends as I can't see the point in applying conditioner to the scalp.  I use a 100% cotton towel to wrap my hair in once it's been washed, leave it on for 30 minutes and scrunch dry the ends (never rub). I use coconut oil once a week as a mask to condition and cleanse the scalp, I don't wrap my hair in anything I just pop it in a bun. For brushing my hair I use a Denman hair brush as the more expensive ones I have purchased I haven't been that impressed with.
Drying the hair

If I wash my hair in the morning I will let it dry naturally. If I have washed it in the evening then I will roughly dry the hair. The only heated tool I use is my heated rollers.

Styling the hair

I don't apply any styling product to my hair after washing/before drying. After it is dry and has been curled then I run some coconut oil through the ends. This gives definition to the curl created by the rollers or to my waves if dried naturally. It also adds shine to the hair and helps prevent dry ends.

Hair up or down

Depending on how my hair has been dried depends on what I do. For naturally dried or roughly dried hair I like to wear my hair either half up or in a low pony tail. If it's been in rollers I like to wear it down or in a pony tail with a cascade of curls. As you can see I am very lazy when it comes to my 

Products mentioned
Louise Galvin shampoo and conditioner 
Neal's Yard Remedies coconut oil 


Sunday, 20 July 2014

Summer Beauty - back to the beginning

Back to basics - why organic beauty products?

I have decided to do a mini blog series regarding my hair, skin, body and make up routines. Explaining in part one why organic beauty products?

I don't expect everyone to have the same mindset as this world would be a very boring place. I just thought I would give an in-depth view of why I decided to change from mainstream to organic.

Having been a user of high end skincare and makeup for years, I was shocked when my skin started reacting to products. I remember going to counters and having skin recommendations done and purchasing products that made no difference but because I didn't have any sensitivities to them I stuck with them. I remember having purchased things for combination skin which the consultant recommended only to find I had normal/dry skin. It was when my skin burnt and became red and irritated that I realised I needed to change something.

I am in my late twenties and I used to love building my points up in a certain high-street chemist where I made some of my purchases, Christmas and my Birthday would see me use my points as a treat to myself. When I thought about the chemicals in mainstream products it made me really think about what effects they were having that I couldn't see. This I why I cleaned up my act.

I decided to use organic beauty products as there are no synthetic chemicals in the products. Purchasing organic you are supporting organic farming, fair-trade cooperatives and in some cases small businesses. I know there is a debate between mainstream or organic is one better than the other?For some it doesn't bother you and that's fine. I made the changed because of the effects the ingredients were having on my skin.

On another note I am also into cruelty free products. There are a few brands who manufacture natural or organic products who have a higher end parent company. The organic/natural brand may be cruelty free but the parent company might not be. If this is of interest to you, you will need to do your research. 


Thursday, 12 June 2014

Planning my bedroom

Image from The White Company

Starting over

I have been thinking about redoing my room from scratch since the start of the year. One of my resolutions was to banish the clutter, downsize my personal belongings and to be more organised. I have been working on these through the year.

I like purchasing home interior magazines for example Your Home, Style at Home and The English Home. The Your Home and Style at Home magazines I feel feature more budget friendly projects and The English Home I feel is more classic and contemporary in design.

I also love browsing the internet for inspiration too. There are a lot of places online to find things that are of a similar interest or design, from Pinterest to Instagram. The past few months I didn't really know which direction my room was going to take. I like a variety of styles from coast and country to French design and architecture. All I knew at the time was I wanted an organised and calm and cosy room to retreat to. One of my favourite places that I have ever stayed at is Cannes. We stayed at the Intercontinental Carlton and I loved the suite we had. The attention to the smaller details. It was magnificent.

Over the past couple of years I have mixed up the accessories. Whilst it was lovely I never felt it clicked together. About a month ago I started pinning ideas of things I loved. I created inspiration boards of coast and country, neutrals and French design. It was during this time that I realised I favoured neutral, calming colours. My Mam and I decided to go into town and it was whilst browsing in The White Company that I decided I liked the tones used. Everything was within the same colour family and it felt calm, tranquil and serene. That to me is exactly how a bedroom should be.

For now I am keeping the bedlinen I have which is a full set each of taupe and white. When the time comes to replace my bedlinen I will stick to plain white bedlinen and warm it up with my accessories. I am going for warm tones in my accessories and curtains, I am painting the walls a light neutral either white or light beige and adding texture and interest with accessories. Keeping the bed accessories to a minimum will help dress the bed on a morning and won't take long to remove at night. Less is always more.

- Louise

Monday, 9 June 2014

The White Company

With Spring comes the process of the deep clean. Along with the decluttering, re-organising and painting, comes the time to reinvent the room a little too.

Two weeks ago I didn't really know which direction my room was going to take. I like a variety of interior styles from modern country to French interior design. I still have fond memories of the suite we had in Cannes with the sea views it was absolutely stunning. I will be doing a post shortly about the style I am going for.

For now though, I thought I would share with you my purchase from The White Company. It is part of the Suffolk collection and it's reversible with velvet on one side and linen on the other.

What are you favourite websites for inspiration? 

I will be doing more bedroom updates and planning posts shortly.

- Louise

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Herbfarmacy Haul

At the start of March I felt it was time to order some things from Herbfarmacy. I treated my Mam to some Herbfarmacy products for Christmas. Now it was time to treat myself.

I decided to order the Luxury Foot Cream, Melissa Lip Nurse and Lip Conditioner as I couldn't decide which one to purchase and I ordered a sample of the Exfoliating Cleanser which has been recently released.

I have had the lip conditioner before and it's the first time I have tried the other products.

Now for the reviews

Luxury Foot Cream is a similar texture to their cleansing mousse. You can really smell the spearmint. It sinks in quickly and is great as an over night treatment with cosy socks on. Overall I would score the Luxury Foot Balm a 4/5

Lip Conditioner is a creamy textured balm and smells of vanilla. This is lighter in consistency to the Melissa Lip Nurse. I find the Lip Conditioner is best for day use in the summer months. I would score the Lip Conditioner a 4/5

Melissa Lip Nurse is definitely my favourite lip balm. The smell is gorgeous, it is a thicker consistency making it perfect for constant dry lip sufferers like myself. I would highly recommend this lip balm. I score the Melissa Lip Nurse a 5/5

Exfoliating cleanser is a very fine exfoliator. The texture is the same as their cleansing mousse with tiny jojoba beads added for gentle exfoliation. It is gentle enough for sensitive skin. I would use this once a week only on my sensitive skin. I score the Exfoliating Cleanser 4/5

What are your favourite Herbfarmacy products? Have you tried any of the ones I have mentioned?

- Louise

A recent shopping trip

In January I make a list of the things that need replacing clothing or household wise.and when my Birthday comes it's all about indulgence. As I have mentioned on here in my earlier posts this year I have added things into my wardrobe gradually.

For my Birthday I decided to purchase some bigger purchases that I would not normally buy willy nilly. April has seen me replace t-shirts that were starting to look faded or had been ruined by deodorant marks, a treat for my feet and a new practical bag. 

My shopping trip took place all around Cornwall, only not in person.

I had been looking at Poppy Treffry ever since I received one of their cosmetic purses with a Trevarno bath oil set my Brother gave me for Christmas. The problem with Poppy's designs is they are all so tempting! It took me months to finally decide on the bag I wanted. I decided on the Herb Robert print in the Mount's Bay messenger style. I have other leather bags which I love, but I wanted one that I could fit all my possessions in for the day(s) ahead. The bag has proved to be a really great purchase as I have used it everyday since receiving it. The Mount's Bay messenger bag is the largest bag I own. I am not a big bag person and I was worried about the size of it when ordering which is why it took me so long to bite the bullet. But I'm so glad I did.


So after my trip to Poppy I decided to go to SeaSalt to purchase a breton top. I love breton tops for spring and summer. So I purchased their Breakwater Top, it has a modern twist on a classic style. I chose the Gateway French Navy option.

I needed to stock up on my skincare and when I saw Spiezia had a special promotion on I couldn't resist.

My final purchase was from Bloom Remedies and it was the Peppermint and Lemongrass foot balm. This is my favourite foot conditioner and I am sure I will continue to use it for as long as the make it. I really like it as the smell is very different to other foot care products. I apply it every night and pop on socks afterwards and I wake up with soft feet. Perfect for this time of year. Unfortunately I don't have a picture to share as I started to use it before doing this post and have hardly any left. The picture below is curtesy of Bloom Remedies. I am really looking forward to purchasing more from Bloom Remedies.

Have you purchased from any of these companies?

- Louise

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Herbfarmacy - samples

Herbfarmacy samples review

The samples I am reviewing were kindly sent to me when I purchased from them.

 All opinions are my own.

Citrus Hand Cream 100g - £15.95
The hand cream is a lovely light textured cream. It keeps the hands moisturised, is easily absorbed without any residue and smells divine. I really liked this hand cream for day time use. One of things I really love about the full sized version is it's in a tube which makes it perfect to carry with you in your hand bag.

Mallow Beauty Balm 30g - £14.50
It's classed as a lush facial balm and I can really see why. A tiny amount is all you need to moisturise your skin. I have very sensitive skin which can become quite dry sometimes and this is perfect as an added boost to your skincare regimen. I have since purchased the full sized jar of this. It's divine.

Skin Rescue Balm 30g - £13.00
Is lovely to use and is quickly absorbed into the skin. I use this overnight and the Mallow Beauty Balm in the morning. It smells like summer in a jar to me it's lovely. The balms are extremely economical as you only need a small amount. The Skin Rescue Balm can be used on any areas of skin that are in need of a conditioning boost.

You can read more about Paul Richards here

You can find Herbfarmacy here

- Louise 

Have you tried Herbfarmacy? What are you favourites?

Friday, 2 May 2014

Isle of Skye - candle company

I first came across Isle of Skye Candles in Kelso, Scotland. They were in a beautiful boutique called Just Plum.  They are handmade on the Isle of Skye and are made from Soya wax.

From the selection in Just Plum I chose the Oriental Lily candle.

The smell is very true to life, you can imagine having a big bouquet of lilies in your home when this is burning. What is outstanding for me when it comes to these candles is they smell even when not lit. The smells aren't cloying or heady. Just very true to life. The Oriental Lily candle would be a perfect present for a bride. Either for the day itself or for a bridal shower.

The perfect candle for this time of year.

The large tumbler retails for £15 and burns for approximately 45 hours. I found the candle had to be lit for slightly longer than was recommended on the packaging. Due to the wastage of wax I won't be  repurchasing the large tumbler candle.

The next two candles were ordered directly from Isle of Skye candles and they arrived within a day of ordering. The travel containers are very cost effective, they burn for a long time and are great as presents or as a treat for yourself. They are perfect for travelling to. The lids can be placed underneath the tins to protect the surfaces they are on.

Fig is one of my all time favourite scents when it comes to candles. I love the woodiness of it. I was intrigued to try this one as it was combined with vanilla. The fragrance of the vanilla & fig candle work really well together. You get the warmth of the vanilla with the woody notes of fig. If you normally find vanilla too sickly sweet, try this one. It's not in anyway sweet or woody. It's a very unique fragrance.

Juniper is an uplifting candle. Perfect to burn at the end of a busy week or when you want an extra bit of pampering. It's not too strong or heady. 

The travel candle containers are perfect for gifts and retail for £8 and burn for 30 hours

Another candle I tried from the range was the Winter Warmer candle in the votive size. This to me is the most true to life winter scented candle. It burnt for an extremely long period of time is one of the most affordable candles. 

The votive candle is priced at £5 and burns for 20 hours. I will be purchasing the larger size of the Winter Warmer fragrance for this winter. 

Out of the candles I have tried so far from Isle of Skye, I would repurchase the small votive candle and the tins.

Isle of Skye website -

They can be found on Facebook

and Twitter

Have you tried Isle of Skye candles? What do you think of their range?

- Louise 

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Why organic skincare?

I started to use premium beauty brands in my teens when my skin was suffering from breakouts due to the hormones that come with puberty. I used to go to the beauty counters and all they saw were the spots and they automatically assumed I had combination/oily skin when in fact my skin was normal/dry/combination. It wasn't until my late teens that I realised what helped and what didn't. 

After dipping my toes into the higher priced ranges I went back to drug store and in 2010 I decided I wanted to go premium again and switched to Origins and Molton Brown and this is where I learnt my lesson. After trying both ranges separately for roughly 6 months each. I made the switch to organic skincare in 2011 after suffering several reactions. My face suffered from burns, boils and tingling. 

In 2011 I originally started using Herbfarmacy and this was all I used for approximately a year. I then decided I wanted to try a 100% organic range and I made the switch to Spiezia.

Since switching to organic skincare I had forgotten just how sensitive and reactive my skin is. This was until a couple of weeks ago. I was too lazy to use my regular balm cleanser by Spiezia that I thought I would use Dove soap. It's supposed to be moisturising enough for dry skin, yet my skin felt rough, burning and was red roar and really painful. It took a good few days to return to being relatively normal.

So I now make it a habit of cleansing my skin immediately after returning home.

Have you ever suffered reactions to skin care products?

- Louise 

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Trevarno organic olive and almond hand cream

I have been using the Trevarno Organic Olive and Almond hand cream on and off since purchasing it. I purchased this as I was running low on my mainstream hand cream and wanted to replace it with a natural product. All of the Trevarno products are certified organic by the farmers and growers association.

The packaging is nice and simple and comes in a frosted aqua jar. It doesn't come with a spatula so it's a case of dipping fingers into the pot. 

The texture is very light and moisturising. I didn't notice any difference in my cuticles when using the hand cream. So I would need to use another product alongside this. The fragrance isn't what I was 
expecting from the description on the box of olive & almond. The hand cream smells of lavender.

I have included the ingredients below in case you want to check them out before purchasing.

I do like the hand cream and would consider repurchasing it in the future. There is also a nail conditioner which is the perfect partner to the hand cream which I am yet to purchase.

The hand cream comes in two sizes 30ml £13 and 60ml £18. There is also a hand and nail kit available for £20 which is on my wish list.

 Organically Produced*
Lavandula Angustifolia Flower Distillate*
(Lavender Flower Water)
Olea Europaea Symphytum Officinale* 
(Comfrey macerated into Olive Oil)
Prunus Dulcis* (Almond Oil)
Simmondsia Chinensis* (Jojoba Oil)
Emulsifying Wax 
Cera Alba* (Beeswax)
Theobroma Cacao* (Cocoa Butter)
Citrus Grandis* (Grapefruit Seed Extract)
Tocopherol (Vitamin E)
Pelargonium Graveolens Essential Oil* (Geranium Essential Oil)
Citrus Paradisi Essential Oil* (Grapefruit Essential Oil)
Juniperus Communis Essential Oil* (Juniper Essential Oil)
(Constituents of Essential Oil: Linalol, Citronellol, Geraniol, Limonene)

Have you tried Trevarno? What are your favourites?
- Louise 

Thursday, 27 March 2014

The new materialism

2014 was going to be the year where I start to clear the clutter and hopefully improve my spending habits. I had already started reading a few blogs on simplifying, using only the best things you have and genuinely being content with what you already have.

Life can be so busy where you forget about or put off what really needs to be done. I feel like I can't put it off any longer. This Saturday I plan on having a major cull and possibly get round to listing things on eBay, donating to charity and just focus on the home.

The new materialism for me is not about purchasing the next best thing or chasing after the next must have bag, shoes or other things I would have done in the past. It's about enjoying what I already have.

- Louise

Friday, 7 March 2014

Natural Nail Care - updated post

Since doing my last nail care post I have mixed things up a little. Instead of buying moisturising things to improve my nails, I looked at the problem instead.

The two pictures below were the state of my nails. I had skin growing on the nail plate. I have tried for years to remove this skin and nothing worked. Until now that is.

The two things that have made a huge difference are by Leighton Denny

One of the products that has made a lasting impression on me is the Leighton Denny Remove and Rectify, used in conjunction with the Leighton Denny hoof stick. These two items have removed the build up of skin on the nail plate. On the back of the packaging it says to use it everyday and once a week in a manicure. I have been using it since for four days now and the improvement is fantastic. It is definitely a repurchase for me.

I purchased the Leighton Denny Remove and Rectify from Marks and Spencer for £11

The Leighton Denny hoof stick was purchased from Must Have for £3.05 inc p&p

The below picture is after a few days of using the Remove and Rectify and hoof stick.

The Leighton Denny crystal nail file which I have been using for a few months now is another one of my favourites. I have had numerous crystal nail files over the years, some which were good and some that were awful. The Leighton Denny crystal nail file is classed as the Rolls Royce of nail files and I can see why. After the filing nails with other files there would be roughness almost jagged edges. The Leighton Denny nail file smoothes the edges of the nails with minimal effort.

I purchased the Leighton Denny small crystal nail file from using my advantage points.

My current nail care products look like this 

I haven't been wearing nail polish since my last nail care post. The smell of the polish and remover make me feel queasy. So I am currently enjoying a natural manicure. The green file is a nail buffer by Marks and Spencer and was £3.

When I get a little me time I like to give myself a manicure and here's how

Soak nails in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes
File nails
Apply remove and rectify and leave for 3-5 minutes
Gentle push back cuticles with a hoof stick
Buff nails to a high gloss shine
Apply hand cream 

Do you have any tips you'd like to add? What are your favourite products?

- Louise

Monday, 3 March 2014

February round up

The past couple of months I have been clearing out the wardrobe. Alongside this I have noticed a few gaps in my wardrobe where I needed to purchase things. I also had to replace some basics too.

I like the idea of having a minimalist wardrobe. Not only is it liberating to have a small selection of good quality basics, the other plus point is everything is interchangeable. My basic colours are navy (it's more flattering in my opinion on a pale complexion), white and grey.

The only clothing items I am purchasing are well thought through, so no more impulsive purchases are happening. Another important thing to consider when building a capsule wardrobe is your lifestyle. Make sure all future purchases are going to work for your lifestyle now, not your imaginary one.

My purchases so far include:

Hobbs Kasia wool coat in Navy


The coat is gorgeous, well made and well worth the price. It looks great with trousers as well as jeans. It definitely dresses up any outfit.

My other purchases are from good all Marks and Spencer. I have had all kinds of designer jeans in the past, some good and some bad. Whilst shopping on a budget I decided to pop into my local M&S and look at the new Per Una range. I purchased a pair of boot cut jeans and a pair of slim leg trousers which look great paired with ballet flats. I was going to include the links for them, but I can't find them on the M&S website.

Thank you for stopping by,

- Louise 

Thursday, 20 February 2014

January round up

The main focus for January was to start a major de-cluttering project. The first thing to tackle was the wardrobe. I was sick of having clothes which weren't being worn, either because they were ill fitting or I didn't like them anymore.

There were 15 items in total to get rid of. The picture above shows what I have left in my wardrobe at the moment. My wardrobe purchase for this month was a navy wool coat from Hobbs. My Barbour International Jacket is best suited to casual wear and I thought my wardrobe would benefit from a smarter jacket too. When the Barbour eventually wears out I will probably replace it with one of their weatherproof jackets as I like to spend time outdoors.

The detoxing of the wardrobe is complete for now. I have found I can get by with two hand bags and a casual tote for summer.

The next stage of the project is to purchase "carefully" selected pieces. This now means I can start to build a capsule wardrobe with a minimal amount of colour and effort. I sat down yesterday with a note book and pen listing items that were missing from my wardrobe.

So the decluttering continues.....

- Louise 

Thursday, 23 January 2014

January book haul

January book haul - purchased from The Book People

January has been filled with a lot of little purchases. I thought I would share a recent book haul all purchased from The Book People. The Book People really do offer great value for money when it comes to books. From order to delivery it took a few days only to receive these, so I am very happy.

M.C Beaton - The Six Sisters Series

M.C Beaton - The Poor Relation series

Elizabeth Taylor - Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont
Elizabeth Taylor - Angel
Elizabeth Taylor - A View of the Harbour

I had seen the special hard back editions of the Elizabeth Taylor books but decided on this set of three from The Book People for £7.79 including p&p. 

What are you currently reading?

- Louise

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Plans for 2014

Every year many of us make resolutions and some are broken within the first few weeks of January. This year my main goal is to re-evaluate my spending and to just enjoy the little things in life more. There are so many great things out there and it's just about finding pleasure in the simplest things. Whether that's a really great book, a relaxing mug of freshly brewed tea or fresh flowers in a pretty jug. I have also decided to do a major declutter this year. January's task at hand is the wardrobe.

What are your plans and goals for 2014.

I am currently reading Mrs Griffin sends her love and other writings by Miss Read. One of my favourite Authors. Always enjoyed with a nice mug of tea.

- Louise