Dinner at Royal China Club London*

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When you’re visiting a place it can be hard to decide where to go eat. Do you go and visit old faithfuls and hope they are as good as the last time, try out somewhere recommended by friends, or go somewhere completely new? We opted for the latter, and when the Royal China Club got in touch to see if we’re like to enjoy supper with them, we absolutely jumped at the chance!

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One of six locations dotted throughout the capital, we headed to the Baker Street restaurant for supper on a rainy Monday, and we were absolutely blown away. The restaurant is an absolute Tardis, with the rear opening out to reveal a huge dining room, decorated with chic lacquered walls. It’s known for some of London’s best dim sum (we found this out after visiting) and although it was probably half-full when we arrived at 7pm, it was soon absolutely packed with a mix of tourists and locals, business men, families and couples, all enjoying some seriously impressive food.

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To start, we opted to share a 1/2 Crispy Duck (£28.80) which came served with hoisin sauce, pancakes, shredded spring onion and cucumber. Truly, it set the tone for the evening – coming to the table steaming, it was shredded in front of us, and we tucked in with gusto.

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Full of flavour, with tender meat and crisp skin, we both agreed. it was the best duck we’d tried in a very long time.  The portion was generous, and could have easily been a main for the both of us. Since we’d been up since 3am that morning, happily, we were ravenous, so polished off the whole thing.

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When it came to choosing our main courses, we were truly spoiled for choice. From traditional dishes to the Uber-luxurious (think abalone and king prawns) it’s a menu which will please everyone – we were even impressed by how many vegetarian options there were. The first of the main courses we settled on with the Sautéed Beef with Oyster Sauce (£15.80) which came sizzling to the table.

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Slices of tender beef were marinated in oyster sauce, and the accompanying mushrooms were absolutely divine. Super savoury in flavour, and absolutely delicious served alongside a generous bowl of fluffy rice. We definitely over-ordered on the rice front – although absolute perfection, two or three people could easily have enjoyed a portion.

I couldn’t resist opting for the Lemon Chicken (£12.80) and I’m so glad I did. It was absolutely incredible – the chick was perfection: moist in the middle with a crisp coating, it was covered in an absolutely divine lemon sauce with was equal parts sweet and sour. This was serious comfort food, and I pretty much polished the plate off single-handedly.

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From the restaurant itself, to the staff and the food, our evening was absolutely flawless, and we’re already plotting a return trip!

Thank you so much the Royal China Club for having us, you can see the whole menu here.

Charlie Miller Edinburgh release new haircare line*

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When you think of Edinburgh institutions, the castle, the Tattoo and the Royal Mile may spring to mind, but one you definitely should be checking out is Charlie Miller hairdressers. Established over 50 years ago, and now encompassing five salons (with another soon to open) Charlie Miller is the place to go when you want to feel groomed and glossy – they’ve even attended to everyone from Anna Wintour to Brigette Bardot!

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A couple of weeks back, I headed in to their Stafford Street salon for a trim. Thanks to my propensity for highlights, and an over-reliance on heat-styling, my hair dries out easily, so I like to get it trimmed regularly to keep it as healthy as possible. It was also the perfect excuse to try out Charlie Miller’s new hair care line. With three shampoos (Hydrate, Volume and Silver) as well as two conditioners (hydrate and volume) to choose from, most will be well catered to.

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Before getting treated to the perfect trim (dead ends snipped off, without leaving my hair looking short) I was treated to an absolutely divine head massage, whilst my hair was washed and conditioned using the hydrate range. First impressions were that the range smells absolutely incredible – it also left hair feeling clean and hydrated without being weighed down.

DSC_0841Each of the three shampoos is designed to be as hair-healthy as possible. They’re all sulphate and paraben-free, which means hair won’t be stressed, stripped or dried out, and it also means they’re perfect if you have hair extensions fitted too! Since my hair tends to stay on the dry side, I was very kindly gifted the Hydrate Shampoo & Conditioner to try, and I have to say – I’m such a fan!

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Packaged in some seriously chic gold-finished bottles, the shampoo and conditioner have become a morning staple. They smell absolutely incredible, and leave hair looking and feeling super healthy – I got these the weekend before getting my roots done, and the products worked absolute wonders in combatting any dryness or damage from the bleach. The products are all made in Scotland, and I’ve already got my eye on the Silver Shampoo!

Charlie Miller Shampoo starts at £17.95 and Conditioner is £18.95 and is available here

 

 

 

Kerastase – Blond Absolu – Bain Ultra Violet

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As a not-quite-natural blonde, I seem to be fighting either roots or brassiness at any one time. If it’s not one it’s the other. So, when Kerastase released their first ever purple shampoo, I may have said a prayer in thanks. I’ve been a nervy purple shampoo user for a while – I’m always worried about leaving myself with a violet rinse rather than creamy blonde (purple really isn’t my colour). Thankfully, Kerastase’s newest offering doesn’t disappoint. It’s a vibrant purple straight out the bottle, but it foams easily, and it smells absolutely beautiful. As with all toning shampoos, I leave this on for a minute or two longer than a normal shampoo, then rinse out and follow with copious amounts of conditioner.

The result? Hair which looks freshly coloured weeks after leaving the salon. It it also super nourishing to strands, leaving hair bouncy, shiny and without a hint of warmth or yellow – exactly how I like it!

Kerastase Blond Absolu Bain Ultra Violet is priced at £23 and is available here

Gorgias London Honey & Rosehip Oil Moisturiser

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With the uptick in the weather, I’ve felt the need to give my skincare regime a bit of an update. Out are the heavy, moisture-rich balms I rely on in the winter, and in is fabulous new Honey & Rosehip Oil Moisturiser from The Gorgias London. Designed to both hydrate and soothe skin, thanks to its clever mix of honey and reship oil, this is the moisturiser to try if you’re after soft, glowing skin right in time for spring and summer.

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Packaged in a dark glass jar (so that the product doesn’t brake down so quickly inside), I only need a finger full each morning. Smoothed directly on to skin after cleansing, the cream is beautifully rich, and sinks right into skin. After applying, skin feels instantly hydrated, as well as a good bit plumper. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for a cream to use as an almost primer – foundations and skin tint absolutely glides on after using it!

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The effects last all day too – there is no dryness or tightness by the end of the day, and it works so well in keeping my skin looking fresh and glowy, even when I’m not wearing makeup. I just adore the use of natural, organic ingredients and the cream is a must-have for Spring Beauty!

Gorgias London Honey & Rosehip Oil Moisturiser is priced at £39.95 and is available here

DAYLESFORD COSMOS ORGANIC ROSEMARY HAND BALM

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Whenever we go to the Cotswolds, there’s one spot we have to make a pilgrimage at least three or four times per trip – Daylesford. I’ve written about visiting the Kingham location for lunch here, and it’s a spot I just adore. Whether you’re after a coffee, breakfast, a hearty meal or just looking for a beautiful spot to spend an hour or so,  I’d heartily push you in the direction of Daylesford.

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When we were down last week, we made sure to head over for lunch (twice) as well as for some spa-time and a little home-wear shopping. In between picking cups and plate, I stumbled across their Cosmos Organic Rosemary Hand Balm. I’ve long been a fan of sister-brand Bamford (I even blogged about them waaaay back here so I was excited to try something new, and I’m so glad I did!

DSC_0681As you would expect from a brand which curates every element of life, the Hand Balm’s packaging is beautifully chic – it would look as beautiful left on the kitchen counter as it would in your handbag, and I just adore the the fresh rosemary scent. You can also get the balm in Bitter Orange (I have this too, and it’s wonderfully fresh) as well as Geranium. The formula itself is ideal for when you’re busy and on the go – it’s hydrating without feeling too sticky or goopy, and it sinks in fast, leaving just the beautiful scent behind. Over the past few days of using the balm, I can already see an improvement in my hands – they feel better, and I’ve not been picking away at my cuticles like normal!

The best part might just be how affordable the Hand Balm is – it’s priced at £10 and is available here

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