Essie Luxeffects Polishes 2015*

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I’m not quite sure I can believe that we’ve just hit 2016! The past year has flown by in a bit of a blur, and I can’t wait to see what the new year has in store!  Like most people, I’ve got a few resolutions up my sleeve, but don’t worry, I’m not going to bore you with the details. Instead, I thought I would start the year off in the most glamorous of ways; with Essie’s stunning Luxeffects collection.

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Unlike most of Essie’s polish collections which feature six or eight new colours, the Luxeffects is a condensed choice of four. They’re gorgeous shades though, encompassing work horses like the silver, and more unexpected shades such s the orange. Considering I’ve been loving my glittery fingers over the festive season, I thought I would share my thoughts!

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Frilling Me Softly, is probably my most reached-for out of the four options. It’s a mix of silver bar glitters and blue hexes in a clear base. It’s a polish that is easily built up, so if you only want a subtle glint, one coat is enough, but if you want super sparkly digits, three coats gives an almost opaque finish.

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I absolutely adore the rich magenta sparkle of Fashion Flares. The polish is a mix of hot pink bar glitter and black hexes held in a clear base. I’ve been wearing two coats over my regular pink polishes for a rich colour, and it’s a great choice if you’re after some serious Barbie-inspired nails.

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Tassel Shaker is a fiery mix of copper and gold bar glitters, and it’s absolutely stunning. If you’re after the glitziest golden manicure, a coat of this gives an incredible sparkle. One layer over dark polishes is really quite something!

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Possibly the most unusual shade of the four is Fringe Factor, a wonderfully cool toned mauve which is made up of gunmetal and purple bar glitters in a clear base. I absolutely love two layers of this over a silver chrome varnish. It’s such a pretty colour, and incredibly eye catching!

Essie Luxeffects polishes are priced at £7.99 each and are available from Boots.

Charbonnel et Walker Christmas Baubles*

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If you can’t indulge over Christmas, real when can you? I love an unexpected treat, and when these Charbonnel et Walker beauties were delivered I absolutely fell in love!

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Considering Charbonnel et Walker have to be my favourite chocolatier, and I’ve loved their Pink Marc de Champagne truffles for years, the pink bauble was a seriously welcome addition to the Christmas tree! Containing eight of the delicious little treats, I think it’s the most adorable little stocking stuffer. If you’ve never tried the truffles, you really must! The smooth outer shell of the truffles is a delicate pink shade, holding a creamy ganache centre. The truffles have a surprisingly punchy champagne scent, which give them a wonderfully grownup flavour.

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My new discovery is the bauble containing Milk Sea Salt Caramel Truffles. The blue bauble is just as beautiful as it’s pink cousin, the the chocolates inside are really incredible. The exterior of the truffles is a crisp milk chocolate shell, which melts into the gooey salted caramel centre. In a word, it’s heavenly. The centre’s saltiness is perfectly balanced with the creamy sweetness of the chocolate, and they are far too easy to sit and enjoy!

Charbonnel et Walker’s Chocolate Truffle Baubles are priced at £12.00 each and are available here

Gift Guide: Philosophy Pure Grace Gift Set*

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Ok, we’re hitting the countdown until Christmas, so, if you’re still looking for a lovely little something to leave under the tree tomorrow, I’m not sure you can do better that Philosophy’s stunning Pure Grace Gift Set. Bonus? It even comes complete with a  bow!

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As if the stunning white and silver box wasn’t pretty enough. Once you get inside, the box comes with everything you need to smell absolutely divine! Containing a bottle of shower gel, jar of body lotion and a bottle of eau de toilette, all in the iconic Pure Grace scent, the gift set is such a treat for a much loved family member (or perhaps, for yourself!)

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I absolutely love having luxurious shower gels like this Pure Grace one. It’s such a treat, and it definitely makes my mornings feel easier! The scent is so fresh and clean, and I just think it feels like such a treat to start the day off smelling so fresh!

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Once I’m out of the shower, I love applying a good handful of the Pure Grace Whipped Body Creme. Again, it smells absolutely beautiful, and my winter-dry skin completely drinks the formula up. The whipped texture means that it feels light enough to apply each morning, and I just adore the way it delicately scents my skin.

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Last up in the trio is the bottle of Pure Grace Eau de Toilette. Since the fragrance is so light and fresh, it’s absolutely perfect for wearing during the day. It’s so lovely and soapy clean, if you’re facing a grotty commute in the new year (and I know I am) a couple of spritzes of Pure Grace keep me feeling fresh all day!

You can find the gift set here.

 

Gift Guide: Philip Kingsley Geranium & Neroli Elasticizer Stocking Filler*

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If you’re anything like me, this time of year takes a serious toll on your hair. In addition to my daily styling, when I’m heading out in the evenings, I like to touch up, usually re-straightening my ends.

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So, since my hair gets enough abuse as it is, I’ve been turning to these adorable little of tubes of Philip Kingsley’s iconic Elasticizer. Normally I use the treatment once a week, but since my hair has been getting a bit of a battering, I’ve upped it to twice a week. Like the original treatment, I wet my hair, then comb the Elasticizer through my lengths and ends. I then pop it up into a top knot under a shower cap and let it get to work for a good 20 minutes. The Geranium & Neroli smell absolutely heavenly, and makes the treatment feel extra special to use. Once I’ve left it on for the 20 minutes, I just shampoo and condition as normal. I cannot tell you how much of a difference it makes! My hair really smoothes down, feels silky soft, and gets really shiny!

You can get a set of three duos here for £33.00

Gift Guide: Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen Quartet*

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If you’ve not been into Marks and Spencer recently, you really need to pop in. Over the past year or so, they’ve really expanded their beauty departments to include some much loved, and often hard to find brands. One of these is Pixi by Petra, who are a brand I’ve been dying to try out.

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I was very kindly sent the Endless Silk Eye Pen Quartet which features four of the brands most-loved eye liners in a selection of colours. The texture of all four pencils is just dreamy – a soft, incredibly saturated line of colour which applies smoothly and evenly to my lash line. It’s everything you could hope for in a liner, and I just love the colour selection – obviously the black is my most reached for, but on days where I want a softer, more natural look I head for the brown, and the grey looks beautiful when I’m wearing a soft, smoky eye look. I’ve also really fallen for the plum shade. It feels unexpected to wear, but on the eyes it gives definition without looking harsh, and the colour is so subtle that it just draws attention to the eyes without looking too purple.

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Despite the pencils’ soft texture, once they’re on, you’re good to go. Despite roaming around Edinburgh in gale force wind and rain, I didn’t get any smudging or wear with these. I think the eyeliners were the only part of my hair and makeup that survived unscathed!

Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen Quartet is priced at £16.50 and is available here.

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