Urban Fruit Coconut Chips*


If you’re anything like me, I always find myself trying to eat mindfully at this time of year. It’s probably got something to do with knowing Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up, both filled with the most delicious offerings, and trying to offset the damage somewhat. I’ve swapped lunchtime sandwiches for sushi and I’m drinking at least one green juice a day, but until now, it’s been hard to find an alternative to a sneaky bag of crisps. Sometimes you just need a little crunch. So, when Urban Fruit sent over their Coconut Chips, I was seriously intrigued. Triple toasted, the coconut chips are absolutely delicious. If I’m in the mood for something savoury, I’ve been grabbing a bag of the Siracha Chilli Chips which are wonderfully spicy. The coconut flavour is subtle enough to tame the heat a little, giving an almost Thai curry effect. The Straight Up Coconut Chips are an absolute godsend when you just need a little nicety. Not overly sweet, but seriously flavourful, they’re a perfect afternoon pick-me-up.

A Night at Netherstowe House*


After the next we spent in Newcastle, it was time for us to meander further south. Our final destination was the Cotswolds, but we felt it might be a bit rushed, barrelling down the M6 in a day, so we decided a stop off was necessary.Our base for the evening was Netherstowe House, a cosy spot in Staffordshire.


The building itself is just breathtaking. A redbrick former mill house, the ivy covered walls were just beautiful, and such a welcome stop from the motorway! If you are something of a commuter, this is an absolute gem of a pitstop!


We were shown to the Johnson room, which is classed as a Deluxe Room. Absolutely huge in size, there was ample room to stretch out, unpack a little, and generally unwind.


The whole hotel is decorated in a cute, slightly eclectic style which falls somewhere between Laura Ashley and the Orient Express. The nods to exotic travel were so pretty, and the room was decorated with a surprising amount of antiques. As something of an art history nerd, I found this absolutely delightful, and it made the room feel so cosy!


Kitted out with everything you could need to whittle away a few hours (including a soaking tub, and homemade cookies), we figured it was time to head downstairs and have supper.


The Netherstowe House Dining Room was absolutely beautiful. Full of stunning original features, it was shimmering with candle light. I didn’t want to disturb the other diners by flashing a camera around, but it was really beautiful.


We started off the evening with some freshly baked bread with butter and Maldon salt. Still warm from the oven, it was just the thing to get our mouths watering.


After pondering the menu for a bit, we both ended up ordering the same dishes, they just sounded too good not to have, and whilst we waited we were surprised with the cutest amouse bouche. The tiniest cauliflower pakora you’ve ever seen was delicately balanced on a shot of satiny smooth cauliflower veloute. Despite it’s delicate size, it was packed with flavour – a balance of cumin and spice was the perfect winter warmer!


We started our dinner with White Parmesan and Onion Soup (£6) which, although perhaps not the most photogenic dish in the world was a comfortingly savoury start to the meal. Absolutely filled with onion, and topped with a parmesan crisp, it was absolutely delicious!


Between course we opted to try a sorbet to cleanse our palettes. A scoop of lemon (£4) and raspberry (£4) between us was an absolute delight. Sharp, sweet and perfectly tart, it was such a contrast from the soup.


The main event was the 7oz Fillet Steak (£22) which came served with hand cut chips, a peppery salad and bernaise sauce. The steak was cooked medium-rare, and was wonderfully succulent, with a rich flavour and a melt-in-the-mouth consistency. It paired so well with the rich bernaise sauce and piping hot chips.


After enjoying our meal, we positively rolled upstairs, and headed straight to bed. We slept so soundly we completely missed breakfast, but if you’re more of a morning person than I am, you can order a fully cooked meal, or choose from a Continental selection.

A night at Netherstowe House on a DB&B basis costs £195. Thank you to Netherstowe House for hosting us.



Lancome Cushion Blush Subtil – 025 Sorbet Grenadine*


I’ve been a fan of Lancome’s Cushion Foundation since they launched the first one last year. It gives the skin just the right amount of dewy coverage without ever looking heavy (and their newest cushion foundation is the stuff of dreams). So, When I saw that they had released a line of cushion blushes, well i just had to give them a go!


Packaged in a dinky black compact a little smaller than the cushion foundations, I love the little pink flower on the lid. It’s sleek, and feels nice to hold, and just feels lie a bit of a step up from my regular blush.


When you click the compact open, it’s just like a foundation – there is a Lancome sponge applicator, and a good sized mirror. This means application on the go is an absolute dream. Honestly though, when it comes to cushion products, I tend to bin the little sponge, and just use clean fingers.


There are six shades to choose from in the range, ranging from candy pink to more muted, tan colours. I opted for 025 Sorbet Grenadine, a stunning warm-toned coral pink. It’s just the thing to brighten up a pale, winter complexion. After applying my foundation (currently I’m loving Lacome’s Teint Idole Ultra Cushion and I’ll be reviewing soon) I simply tap my fingertips on the blush cushion, and then tap the formula onto the tops of my cheekbones.


Although the formula appears seriously bright at first sight, it sheers out beautifully. It never looks too bright or garish, instead it just lends a stunning luminosity to skin. The glow lasts all day too – no matter how early I apply the blush, I can still see it at the end of the day – I’m in love!

Lancome Cushion Blush Subtle is priced at £28 and is available here (UK) and here (US)


Bobbi Brown Brightening Blush – Warm Cocoa*


Bobbi Brown’s latest collection Wine & Chocolate is all about celebrating indulgence. Perfect for winter, it’s full of the richest shades imaginable, and it’s just the thing for giving your makeup a dose of winter luxe!


The Brightening Blush in Warm Cocoa is designed to warm up cheeks thanks to a formula which is infused with shimmer. It’s a three-formula product which really breathes life back into the skin, leaving it looking glowy and healthy, right in time for Christmas party season!


Warm Cocoa is probably best suited to slightly more tanned or deeper skin tones than mine, but it’s a stunning coffee colour, which looks really beautiful brushed on the top of cheek bones. Since I’m paler than a ghost at the moment, I’ve been using it with a light hand, as something of a bronzer-topper, as well as a neutral eye colour.


As well as looking absolutely glorious on cheeks, it gives lids a slick of neutral colour which is beautifully shimmery, and perfect for everyday wear. I can’t get enough of it!

Bobbi Brown Brightening Blush in Warm Cocoa is priced at £35.00 and is available here (UK) and here (US)

La Roche-Posay Toleriane 3 Step System*


When it comes to skincare, I have two main concerns – hydration and beating redness. Keeping skin hydrated is pretty easy – I can list a few moisturisers which are incredibly nourishing, but dealing with redness is another issue. I’m not keen on piling on colour correctors, so using skincare that targets it is the absolute dream.


La Roche-Posay has made dealing with sensitive, reactive skin incredibly easy with their Toleriane 3-Step System. Featuring three of the brand’s best-loved products, the 3-Step system is great way of seeing which products really work for your skin, or if you’re travelling, it’s the perfect thing to pop into your hand luggage.


I’d never tried the Toleriane Dermo-Nettoyant cleanser before, but it’s a real gem of a product. Used on a cotton pad, it completely eradicated any traces of makeup without stinging my eyes or leaving my skin feeling stripped.


The tin of Thermal Spring Water is a mini of one of my favourite products from La Roche-Posay. I’ve loved it for years, and there probably isn’t a day I don’t use it! After cleansing, I give my face a light mist to prepare to for moisturising. It’s also how I prep my skin pre-face masking, as it’s the perfect way to slightly dampen it without having to mess around at the sink.


The Toleriane Ultra Intense Soothing Care is a new find for me, it’s a wonderfully lightweight, soothing moisturiser, which is perfect for hydrating skin without overwhelming it. I only need two pumps to prep my skin for the day. It’s completely scentless, so it’s perfect for sensitive skin, especially now we’re moving into the cold weather!

La Roche-Posay Toleriane 3 Step System is priced at £22.55 and is available here.

Close Me
Looking for Something?
Post Categories: