Pati & Coco Chocolate Desserts*

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Now that we’re officially in the run up to the big day, I feel like I have even less time than normal. It might be something to do with a whole lot of work which has just arrived, and needs seen to before the New Year kicks off, or perhaps it’s those presents I’ve been putting off? Either way, I hardly have time to brush my hair in the morning, let alone faff with desserts, which is exactly where my new found love of Pati & Coco comes in!

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Packaged in chic glass packaging, Pati & Coco are new multi-layered, multi-textured chocolate desserts, which are perfect for enjoying as an indulgent treat at this time of year. Decadently rich and creamy, you can enjoy a variety of flavour options (I’m partial to the original Ganache and Chocolate, and the Pistachio is absolutely incredible too!) which are perfect for catering to picky palettes this festive season.

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These pots have been such a delight to have in the fridge at this time of year – friends who have popped round have felt suitable treated, and quiet evenings have become absolutely dreamy with the addition of these, some music and a great book for a quiet half an hour of self care.

Available in Sainsburys now and on offer at just £3.50 for a duo pack – these are a must-have for the Christmas period!

Beauty Stocking Stuffers: Spacemasks*

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When it comes to beauty obsessions, my newest is a self-heating eye mask, and it’s all because of Spacemasks. They’re the luxe way I’ve been ending busy days, and if you’ve not tried them yet, you’re seriously missing out. Available in a choice of blue (original) or red (in aid of Royal Marsden Cancer Charity), they are just the dreamiest way to relax.

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Available in boxes of five, the masks all come individually wrapped, and once you open the packages, they react to the air to heat up, releasing the delicate scent of jasmine. If you’ve had a stressful or busy day, there’s nothing better than switching on a podcast, snuggling up in bed and popping one of these on. They knock me out within ten minutes every time, and you feel like you’re in a spa as you drift off.

Spacemasks are priced at £15 per box and they’re available here

Stocking Stuffers – Tweezer Files*

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When it comes to finding stocking stuffers, I love find things which people need but don’t necessarily have. They’ve got to small and decently affordable, and I think I’m ticking all the boxes with this new Tweezerfile. I’m guilty of buying a new (rather expensive) pair tweezers anytime I blunt (or lose) the ones I’m using.

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It’s an expensive habit, so when Tweezerfile got in touch to see if I wanted to give their new gadget a go, I couldn’t resist. A handy little gadget, it’s a credit card sized file which sharpens your tweezers so they feel like new. Just run the tweezers over the metal side a few times and they’re as good as new. Honestly – they feel box fresh!

Tweezerfile are available in a choice of two colours, and they’re priced at £19.99 here.

Too Faced Christmas Star Palette*

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I’m pretty sure that the very first products I tried from Too Faced were from their Christmas collections from way back when, and since then, I’ve loved how ‘all out’ the brand goes each year.

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Obviously Too Faced is a brand which doesn’t do cute by halves, but their Christmas Star Palette might just be their most festive yet! Packaged in a cardboard package which transforms from a pentagon into a star, and secured with a gingerbread fairy, it’s pretty much Christmas personified.

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As if the twenty shadows and five face powders (!) inside the palette wasn’t enough, it comes with a full-sized lip gloss in the exclusive shade Ginger Snap, and a mini Better than Sex Mascara. To say I’m obsessed with the gloss is an understatement. A warm-toned pink shot-through with blue glitter, it’s a stunning, surprisingly neutral gloss which is perfect for everyday use.

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It’s one of those glosses which I just adore – it’s the right kind of sticky, and leaves lips looking juicy. I’m obsessed with the sugary scent, and it’s been in my everyday makeup bag since it arrived.

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Better than Sex Mascara is one of those iconic formulas, and for good reason. It gives lashes serious volume and length, and leaves you with a real false lash effect. I love that it’s super black, and it stays put, all day long, so you don’t need to worry about smudging or flaking throughout the day.

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The mini-sized is perfect, if like me, you struggle to finish a full-sized tube within the recommended three months, or if you travel a lot. I’ve popped this one straight into my travel makeup bag, so that I can enjoy it while I’m away from home.

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The palette itself is a real show-stopper – once you open it out, you get the full star effect, and I love the glitzy golden interior. Once you’re inside, you’ll also notice the smell – rather delightfully, the whole palette is gingerbread scented!

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The twenty eyeshadow shades all veer towards the warmer end of the spectrum, and there’s a great balance of finishes – with matte, satin and glitters all included. I also love the inclusion of the beautiful jewel shades for a pop of seasonal colour – for a neutrals-fiend like me, getting to play with a beautiful purple (Ornament to Be) or olive (Feliz Navidad) is a perfect way to update my regular look.

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There are enough neutrals in there to be able to subtly mix up my eyeshadow for day too! I’ve been loving adding a little subtle shimmer in the form of Good Tidings, and Jingle Mingle too! Each and every one of the shadows blends beautifully, and they last all day long, even on days when I’ve not properly primed before applying.

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The palette really is a full face in one box, as it also contains a bronzer, two highlighter shades and two blushes. I’ve been loving a light dust of bronzer to take the edge off my winter whiteness, then a touch of the blush keeps everything rosy.

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What I love is how flattering to a range of skin tones this palette is – there’s even a choice of pink or icy shades of highlighter, and the shadows would look absolutely stunning on everyone.

Too Faced Christmas Star Palette is priced at £36 and is available here (UK) and here (US)

 

Getting into the Christmas ‘Spirit’*

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When it comes to celebrating Christmas, I’m not sure anything feels quite as festive as a really great cocktail. From something as simple as a Bucks Fizz or Mimosa with breakfast, to more complicated options later on during the day, it’s always fun to be able to kick back and enjoy a cocktail (or two!).

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So, when Aldi got in touch with their take on some seasonal options, I couldn’t resist giving them a go. I had no idea that the stores were so well stocked – from whisky liqueurs to London Dry Gins – you can stock the whole bar cart in a single visit!

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I’ve not gotten around to it yet, but I’m looking forward to whipping up a batch of Candy Cane Swirls once the holidays have properly begun.

Candy Cane Swirl

Ingredients:

– 30ml The Infusionist Candy Cane Gin Liqueur

-20ml Oliver Cromwell London Dry Gin

-20ml whole milk

-20ml double cream

-1 teaspoon of icing sugar

-The white of one medium free-range egg

Method:

  1. Add all ingredients to a shaker with cubed ice
  2. Shake until the outside of the cocktail shaker turns cold
  3. Strain into champagne flute to serve

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The Gingel Bells cocktails are also high up on my list – I love a good gin, so the Oliver Cromwell London Dry Gin with lemon and a Vodka Liqueur sounds dreamy!

Gingel Bells

Ingredients:

-50ml Oliver Cromwell London Dry Gin

-25ml lemon juice

-2 teaspoons of sugar

-15ml The Infusionist Pear, Cranberry & Cinnamon Vodka Liqueur

Method:

  1. Add gin, lemon juice and sugar to a shaker with cubed ice
  2. Shake until the outside of the cocktail shaker turns cold
  3. Strain over fresh crushed ice in a rocks glass and drizzle with The Infusionist Pear, Cranberry & Cinnamon Vodka Liqueur
  4. Sprinkle with cinnamon and garnish with a lemon twist to serve

Thank you to Aldi for gifting me a few drinks options for this post – I’ve been seriously impressed!

 

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