Hourglass Unreal Lipgloss – Provoke*

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When it comes to makeup, I’m not sure you can beat a great nude gloss. It’s one of those products I reach for no matter what the situation. Whether I’ve got a day of meetings, or I’m just heading out on errands, a nude gloss is always a flattering option.

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When the Hourglass team visited Edinburgh, I absolutely fell in love with the Unreal glosses, a whole display of which decorated our brunch table. The shades ranged from the clear Halo (reviewed here) to the sultry Impact, and I was absolutely thrilled to find a  tube of Provoke in the very generous goodie bag.

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If you’ve not tried the Unreal gloss formulas – you need to. On the lips they feel rich, thick and almost satiny, and the weartime is a good few hours per application. With a subtle minty-fresh scent, they’re not gloopy or sticky, and I’m obsessed with the cool nude of Provoke. There’s a subtle coolness to the colour which is perfect for making teeth look pearly white.

Hourglass Unreal Lipgloss in Provoke is priced at £28 and is available here (UK) and here (US)

It’s a 10 Miracle Hair Mask*

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Honestly, when products proclaim themselves a miracle, I get a bit shifty. I mean, how life changing can a hair conditioner actually be? I’ve only had a couple of masks which have literally changed the texture of my hair in a single use – the first is this Fekkai one, which is increasingly hard to get my hands on, but undoes bleach damage pretty much over night. More recently, I’ve been loving Coco and Eve’s insta-famous mask, which smells of coconuts, and leaves ends feeling silky, yet I couldn’t resist a cheeky Amazon order, when I caught sight of this, and honestly, I’m so glad I took the plunge.

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Naturally, my hair is dark mousey brown, wavy and prone to a bit of frizz and fluff, but I’ve been heat styling it and highlighting it since my 13th birthday (yes, I did insist on highlights when I officially reached teenager status) and as a result, my ends can always benefit from a little TLC. The original It’s a 10 Leave in Treatment (review here) has been a morning staple for nigh-on a decade, so trying the new Miracle Hair Mask felt like a no brainer.

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My one negative for the mask has to be the size. Compared to similarly priced products, the tub is a touch on the teeny side, and coupled with the slightly loose texture, this isn’t a product which makes you feel like it’s good value. Other than that though – it’s glorious. I’ve been using it twice a week, since I’ve just had my hair done, applying a generous layer of it from around ear to tip. It doesn’t weigh hair down, despite being super nourishing, so it’s great for fine hair, as well as thicker and coarser types. The fresh scent is absolutely gorgeous, and sticks around after blow drying. After using the mask, hair feels noticeably softer and smoother, and it’s far shinier than before too!

It’s a 10 Miracle Mask is priced at £ and is available here (UK) and here (US)

A Night at Hawkstone Hall*

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Is there anything more glorious than spending a night or two away in a luxe hotel? I certainly don’t think so. No matter how busy, stressed or anxious you’ve been feeling – the moment you check in somewhere plush, the worries tend to absolutely melt away.

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I’ve been having a busy summer, and without the time to go a proper holiday somewhere sunny, it felt like fate when the opportunity to spend a night at the stunning Hawkstone Hall came up.

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An absolutely stunning early 18th century mansion nestled in the heart of the English countryside, we headed down on a rather soggy Wednesday afternoon, and it felt like an absolute dream when we rounded the corner, and came across the hotel.

Only opened back in April following a two year renovation, Hawkstone Hall was previously a family home, then a Roman Catholic Priest Retreat. Sumptuously decorated, we were met at the door with a glass of champagne, and allowed to relax in the morning room during check-in.

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Honestly, the building is one of the most staggeringly beautiful hotels I’ve been in. There are some many incredible original features, so that every time you look around, there’s something new to see. I’m a bit of an architecture and interiors nerd at the best of times (I studied Art History at university, and I can spend days in galleries and museums) so the hotel was quite literally a dream come true to stay at.

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With 39 bedrooms to choose from, all named after British authors, Hawkstone Hall is a hotel which really feels like the quintessential country house hotel.

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We were swiftly shown upstairs to the Christie room on the third floor. Named after the famous mystery novelist, it was absolutely everything you could hope for in a hotel. Seriously plush, with an oversized tub, huge bed and all the mod cons, I could have happily spent a week in here and still been sad about leaving.

After a four hour drive from Edinburgh, the bath was soon put to good use, and after the obligatory photos were taken, it was glorious to have a good old soak, making good use of the fabulous Elemis toiletries on offer.

The bathroom itself was just as dreamy – incredibly spacious, with more than enough room to set out my skincare goodies, thanks to the his ‘n’ hers sinks – I loved the vintage touches and roomy shower. With some serious pressure behind it, it was the perfect way to get the morning started!

The bed was the stuff of dreams too. Absolutely huge and decorated in taupe and grey, it was hard to resist jumping right into.

Right in the centre of it, was Hector – a fun little touch, which would make the perfect souvenir of your trip. Throughout the room, we were completely blow away by all the little extra touches. The bedside tables had Elemis pillow spray and lip balm, whilst the drinks trolly had a wonderfully curated selection of drinks and nibbles.

It’s these little touches, which for me, really make a hotel memorable, and Hawkstone Hall has quickly become one of our favourites.

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Not only was it absolutely beautiful, but the staff were unfailingly wonderful. Full of enthusiasm and knowledge about the building, it’s clear that the hotel really have a wonderful team in place.

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We headed down to the Saloon for dinner (it was so good, it’s got a whole post of its own), but were were back down for breakfast.

We headed down to the Saloon for dinner (it was so good, it’s got a whole post of its own), but were were back down again for breakfast.

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The Saloon really is one of the grandest rooms you can imagine, but impressively, it’s cosy, and wonderful to sit and relax in. In addition to breakfasts and dinners, it also plays host to afternoon tea too!

We kicked things off with a fruit platter, which came beautifully presented. Slices of watermelon, pineapple and mango were delicious, and the berries were all sweet and succulent.

Despite not normally being much of a breakfast person, I couldn’t resist their cheese omelette, and I am so glad I indulged! A fluffy cloud of eggs, filled with melting cheese was presented, and promptly devoured. Unlike most omelettes which rely on a sprinkling of cheddar, Hawkstone Hall had (once again) gone above and beyond – a touch of brie and blue cheese worked to give it a delicious savoury richness, and I could happily wake up to it daily from now on.

We had made a couple of appointments in Cheshire for later that morning (rookie error on our part), so after breakfast I took a quick walk around the hotel to see what was what.

My first port of call was the Tapestry Room, which was absolutely stunning. Decked out in powder blues, it makes the perfect spot for an intimate wedding ceremony, and the plasterwork on the ceiling truly was the stuff of dreams.

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The features which Hawkstone Hall have retained are absolutely incredible. I could have happily spent the day taking photographs of each and every detail.

I can see why the hotel is so popular for weddings and for retreats – every single corner of the place is glorious – a especially loved the corridor heading up to the Tapestry Room which had a real greenhouse feel – such a beautiful spot to relax and enjoy the sunshine in!

I couldn’t resist sneaking into the Ballroom too! Already set up for their next event, the room had some serious glamour! With a gilded ceiling and crystal chandelier, this room was an absolute dream to explore – I can only imagine how stunning it must be full of people enjoying themselves!

If you’re looking for the North of England’s prettiest ballroom – I’m pretty sure Hawkstone Hall has the crown!

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The hotel also enjoys acres of stunning grounds, including lily ponds and terraced gardens. There’s a bank of hunters at the front door to slip into if you want to explore – as well as a golf cart which can show you round in record time. Thanks to the aforementioned appointments, we weren’t able to explore, but the next time we visit, I’m leaving a whole afternoon free to properly explore.

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As you can probably tell, we had an absolute ball at Hawkstone Hall. The staff could not have been lovelier, and honestly, the hotel is an absolute jewel. We’re already planning a return visit, and I’ve been shouting about the place to pretty much everyone I know.

Thank you so much to Hawkstone Hall for having us. Rooms start at £200 and you can find out more information here

Spicy Lobster Nuggets from Burger & Lobster launching soon

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Burger & Lobster, is launching Spicy Lobster Nuggets as a menu hack, on 27thAugust in all restaurants after 8pm, to help satisfy late-night posh-nosh nugget cravings. Because McDonalds nuggets are beastly.

The six Spicy Atlantic Lobster Nuggets, coated in a delectable spicy batter are available for £15.95, five times the price of the much-derided spicy chicken nuggets at McDonalds but worth every penny.

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The indulgently lush late-night-only treats are made with tender chunks of fresh Atlantic lobster, sustainably sourced from the coasts of Nova Scotia, coated in a mouth-watering spicy batter. Batter that tastes like a warming cuddle on a winter morning. Thrilling.

Consisting of six spicy nuggets, the dish can be paired with either a fresh lemon dip or a ravishing truffle mayo. Delish. End your night in the most ostentatious way, by adding a glass of bubbles to your order. It’s not the milkshake that brings the boys to the yard anymore.

Upgrade your night at home, work or play and get the Spicy Lobster Nuggets delivered to you, exclusively on Deliveroo. You can order the tasty, spicy, not going to disappoint-y Lobster nuggets straight to your door via Burger & Lobster and little sister restaurant Smack. Stunning. Already expanding since their move to online, Smack are also now heading to the City of London and will be virtually available from 26th August.

Launching on 27th August, the exclusive dish, which doesn’t appear on the menu, can be ordered in all Burger & Lobster restaurants, every evening from 8pm for £15.95. You just have to be in the know on how to order them with the secret code of “Spicy Lobster Nuggets”.

The new dish is set to be the finest late-night spicy nuggets on the market. For reservations visit www.burgerandlobster.com or call 0207 201 8676 

Scotland’s First Fragrance House Jorum Laboratories Launches Pop-Up Perfumery at Jenner’s for the Edinburgh Fringe*

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Jorum Laboratories, Scotland’s first fragrance house, has announced the launch of its eponymous perfume brand, Jorum Studio, with a pop-up perfumery at the iconic Edinburgh department store, Jenners.

From 29 July to 26 August 2019, Jorum Studio will be taking up residence in a standalone area of the world-famous store, allowing Edinburgh residents and visitors to the city a unique opportunity to experience this truly contemporary fragrance house first-hand.

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Facing on to the hustle and bustle of buzzing Rose Street, this is an ideal location for consumers to immerse themselves in the vivacious vibe of the Fringe, but also to fall headlong in love with a brand-new fragrance, forever entwined with those special memories of Edinburgh in the summertime.

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The pop-up will offer the public the first opportunity to experience Jorum’s considered, modern fragrances for themselves. With six fragrances from the brand’s original Progressive Botany collection available to test out and trial, alongside three scents from the newly-released Psychoterratica range, there will also be samples and special offers available for customers throughout the duration of the pop-up.

The team behind Jorum, partners Euan McCall and Chloe Mullen, has also invited in other contemporary Scottish businesses to support them in their new space, presenting a vision of modern Scotland to the world. Edinburgh businesses including Solas Neon, grow urban, Sweetdram and Pyrus Botanicals will all be contributing to the look and feel of the pop-up, bringing a unique vibe and allowing consumers to interact with some of the country’s finest homegrown, artisan brands, all under the same roof.

Prior to launching Jorum Studio, Euan and Chloe have been working with their team for a decade as Jorum Laboratories, formulating ambient aromas and sensual scents for some of the world’s leading brands. The team at Jorum Laboratories have worked for leading brands including Penhaligon’s London, L’Artisan Parfumeur, Miller Harris and NEOM Organics, amongst many others. With a handmade approach to both formulation design and manufacturing, Jorum’s focus has always been on the quality of the fragrance, working with the finest raw materials to create innovative, original and truly memorable perfumes, crafted with heart and integrity.

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Euan McCall, perfumer and founder of Jorum Studio, commented, “We are incredibly excited for the opportunity to open our own pop-up shop, especially so during the busiest time of year for Edinburgh, and in such an iconic location. The team at Jenners have been incredibly supportive of us as an independent Scottish brand and we are delighted to be partnering with them to present our perfumes to the citizens of, and visitors to, our shared home city. Jorum Studio is a vision of contemporary Scotland, showing that our country is about far more than tartan, whisky and shortbread, and we are thrilled to have aligned with some incredible likeminded brands who share our vision. We are very much looking forward to welcoming customers into our beautiful pop-up store, and having the opportunity to share our fragrances and their stories with them.”

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Alan Thomlinson, store manager, Jenners, commented, “We are delighted to welcome this independent Scottish brand to our iconic Jenner’s store and offer customers the chance to experience Jorum’s contemporary fragrances first hand. Edinburgh Fringe Festival is such an exciting and vibrant time for the city, making this the perfect time for us to host a unique, artisan pop-up in store that will captivate and delight our customers”.

The Jorum Studio pop-up perfumery will launch at Jenners on 29 July, accessed via the entrance on Rose Street. The pop-up will be open from 9.30am daily until 26 August 2019.

For more information on Jorum Studio, visit www.jorumstudio.com.

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