{A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog}

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

My Favourite Festive Reds

best red nail polishes and red lipsticks christmas holiday season
Here's a selection of my favourite red lipsticks and nail polishes to help you look all festive and fancy this holiday season...

I wasn't a big fan of red lipsticks until I discovered Max Factor's Ruby Tuesday. Since then it's been a full blown love affair, so much so that I now have a sizeable amount of reds in my collection. Though I'm currently riding the minimalist wave, where I'm sticking to nudes and pinks, I still like to whip out a red lipstick every time I feel a bit adventurous. However, if you're looking to rock red lips and tips this festive season, here's a selection of my favourites: 


Kiko Power Pro Nail Lacquer (13): A pure bright red. This streak-free formula dries down to a super glossy finish. 

Nails Inc (St. James): A bright pillar-box red with long-lasting formula. Lasts a week without a chip in sight. 

Lottie London (Icon-oholic): A raspberry red that has an incredibly opaque formula. Streak-free and dries quickly. 

Deborah Lippmann (New York State Of Mind): A beautiful colour with fine-milled shimmer that's dries to a high-gloss finish. It's a mix between burgundy and red which makes it a wearable all year round shade. 


Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Lipstick (Personne Ne Rouge): This is by far the most boldest and brightest lipstick in my collection. It borders on the neon red territory on me, but this pure red lipstick is for when you want to make a bold statement. 

L'Oreal Collection Star Pure Reds (Pure Brick): A very wearable orange-y red with a hint of brown. This new-age matte formula applies evenly without highlighting lip texture or settling into lines. 

Lush It Started With A Kiss Lip Tint: Smells very cinnamon-y and festive. Though I can't stomach the overpowering scent, this pigmented lip tint is perfect for on the go application. 

What's your first memory of trying out a red lipstick? Tell me your story in the comments below. 


Tuesday, 15 December 2015

The Art Of Relaxing In A Bath

The Art Of Relaxing In A Bath
There's nothing a hot bath can't fix; it's the perfect 'me-time' ritual that's sure to leave you feeling refreshed.....

It's been a stressful few weeks and my two reliable go-tos have been my loving husband and a hot bath. There's nothing more I look forward to than luxuriating in the bathtub with a good magazine. On most days, I just close my eyes and meditate (yes, in the tub) because my mind can be a busy place. I add a few drops of the Therapie Equilibrium Bath & Shower Essence for a detoxing effect. The heady combination of Persian rose, neroli, jasmine and blood orange instantly uplifts the mood. Next, I add a handful of the mineral-rich Himalayan Pink Salts because it has a wonderful warming quality. 

How To Take A Bath With Epsom Salt
Occasionally, I use a Lush Bath Bomb; my current favourite is the Dragon's Egg. Blended with lemon and bergamot oil, this refreshing bath bomb whizzes in the water and turns it lemony yellow. Once the water has cooled down a bit, I light a few candles and get into the tub - the ones in the background are the Christmas candles from Twig + Dot. I like to use a body scrub while in the bath and my top favourite at the moment is the Molton Brown Stimulating Body Polisher. This sugar scrub with the goodness of eucalyptus oil is gentle but effective enough to slough away all the dead skin. Finally, I put on the Nuxe Moisturising Mask and soak in the sweet-smelling water. I usually soak in for about 15 - 20 minutes and I always emerge feeling calm, refreshed and relaxed. 

What's your favourite bath ritual? 

Friday, 11 December 2015

Drink Up With Taste Cocktails

Taste Cocktails Subscription Box London
Taste Cocktails Subscription Box London

If you are way behind Christmas shopping, I have just the perfect gift that's sure to make this holiday season more merrier...

Wouldn't life be more livelier if only you could whip up some delicious cocktails at the comfort of your home? The people at Taste Cocktails thought this was a brilliant idea too, so they turned it into a business. Taste Cocktails offer monthly cocktail subscription box with bar-quality spirits. Packaged in a beautiful brown box, you get all the required ingredients to make your cocktail. I opted for the Mojito Kit because imagine coming home after a tired day to a tall, chilled glass of mojito...ahhh..bliss! 

Taste Cocktails Subscription Box London Mojito Kit

Taste Cocktails Subscription Box London Mojito Kit
Taste Cocktails Subscription Box London Mojito Kit
The box came with a 100ml bottle of white Guyana rum and 60ml bottle of gold Guyana rum. It also included sugar syrup, agwa, angostura and grenadine. The kit contains enough alcohol to make cocktails for six people, which is fantastic for the little price you pay. If you're not proficient at mixology, like me, they include a recipe card to guide your cocktail-making to perfection. 

Best Mojito Recipe Taste Cocktail
Best Mojito Recipe Taste Cocktail

So last Sunday, I set out to test this kit and my husband R, who usually prefers scotch asked for another glass of mojito. That's really something; either I'm a very good mixologist or the ingredients are top-notch. I'd say it's the latter. It took me less than five minutes to whip up the drink and it doesn't require any bartending equipment. Though all the ice had melted by the time I took pictures, it still tasted goood! Thanks for making our Sunday, guys. Hic!

PS: They're crowdfunding, go help them out cos 'tis the season to be generous. 

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Twig + Dot: The Christmas Candle Edit

Twig + Dot: The Christmas Candle Edit
Though I don't have a real Christmas tree, these Twig+Dot candles more than make up for it with their woody and pine-y scents ....

Scented candles are my number one weakness, they create a home-y atmosphere, no matter where you are. There's something very comforting about their glow-giving warmth. Also, they are a fail-safe gifting option, and this year I found the perfect set of candles that's sure to be a delight to receive. 

Twig + Dot's hand poured candles come in a variety of heady scents that fill the home with warm, rich and invigorating fragrance. I received a box with five candle votives and these soy and mineral wax candles are expertly blended to ensure your home always smells delightfully divine. 

Sleigh Ride is the best wood-scented candle I've ever tried. Blended with pinecone, fir and resin, this woody candle is the candle alternative to a Christmas tree. Merry Kissmas is a fruity and spicy with notes of cranberry, pomegranate and mistletoe. Christmas Day is an invigorating spicy scent reminiscent of mince pies. It's made up of festive spice and fresh balsam. 

Jolly St. Nick is a mix of sugar, spice and everything nice. It features notes of sugarplums, chocolate and peppermint. Santa Baby is the festive one with notes of black cherry, frankincense and patchouli. I'm sure it'll have you singing 'Santa Baby.. slip a candle under the tree, for me...'. 

PS: I'm part of Twig+ Dot's 12 Bloggers of Christmas count down. Read other reviews here

What are your favourite festive scents?

Monday, 7 December 2015

Moisturisers That Deliver

Best Drugstore Moisturisers First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream Review
The little black dress of my skincare line-up are these two affordable moisturisers that deliver an instant dose of hydration....

My skin is neither dry nor oily, it's just a bit temperamental. It gets slightly dehydrated if I don't drink enough water or moisturise regularly. After randomly slapping on everything that's sitting on my bathroom shelf, I've started to take my skincare routine a little more seriously. I've found two great moisturisers that provide the perfect hydration and quench for the skin without leaving behind a greasy layer. 

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream: This is the perfect example of a non-greasy moisturiser that packs a serious punch. Creamy and lightweight, this emollient moisturiser absorbs quickly and provides an instant hit of hydration. This repairing cream dries down to a matte finish, leaving you with a smooth surface that's incredibly soft. Made from colloidal oatmeal, shea butter and eucalyptus oil, this is a great no-frills option for every day. 

Emolene Dry Skin Treatment Cream: This is one of the best discoveries of 2015. Wonderfully light and soothing, this water-based moisturiser is a dehydrated skin's best friend. India's answer to the the cult French pharmacy favourite Homeoplasmine, this moisturiser is an instant skin booster. The non-greasy formula glosses over dry patches and sinks into the skin leaving behind a veil of moisture. It's fragrance free and oil-free making it perfect for all skin types and conditions. Didn't drink enough water? Just slap this on! 

What are your favourite moisturisers? Leave your recommendations in the comments section below. I'd love to hear from you! 

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Simplified Brow Routine

A pair of well-groomed brows can be achieved in less than a minute, read on to know more...

After faffing about with brow pomades and powders, I've finally found two products that help me achieve well-groomed brows in under a minute. I'm not a big fan of the sculpted, mega-arch brow look; I prefer a less precise approach that makes the brows look naturally thick. Soap & Glory's Brow Archery in Brownie Points is a double-ended pen that's designed with brow tint and colour to give you achieve perfectly shaped brows. The tint end of the pen comes with a fine tipped brush to help you feather on individual hairs without requiring surgical precision. The waxy end not only adds a tint, but also thickens the hairs to create fuller looking brows. It can be layered or worn alone depending on how you want to shape your brows.

I brush my brows upward and outward and fill in any sparse areas with soft feathering strokes. To give it a little more fullness, I apply the waxy colour towards the inner corners in gentle strokes making sure not to over fill. Finally, I brush through with the Maybelline Brow Drama in Dark Brown to give it some texture and hold it in place. This brow mascara is probably the best brow gel I've ever used, it's grooms the brows into shape without making it too stiff or crunchy. 

What's your brow grooming routine? Leave your comments below. 

Monday, 16 November 2015

Review: Introducing H&M Beauty

H&M Beauty Review Uk Buy Products online
H&M's new beauty line has some top-notch products and some absolute fails, here's my take on it...

Colour Essence Eye Cream in Sirocco, £4.99: This creamy eyeshadow with finely-milled glitter is a delight to use. The velvety cream-to-powder formula is highly blendable and wears well without a primer. Though it lacks the depth and complexity when compared to other drugstore eyeshadows, at £4.99 it is as good as it gets. This bronzy shade is perfect for everyday use; I like to smudge some dark kohl along the lash line to create a smoky eye look. Next, on my shopping list is the gorgeous mauve-bordeaux shade called 'Gentlewoman'. 

Cream Lip Colour in Rust Me, £7.99: This lipstick is a winning combination of rich, pigmented colour and high-shine. The wonderfully moisturising formula glides on easily without creeping into lip lines or highlighting the texture. It's the perfect autumnal shade that sits right between a rusty brown and red - a modern take on the 90's brown. The only let down is the longevity; it disappeared without a trace after my morning tea. Such a shame! 

Colour Essence Eye Pencil in Celestial, £3.99: This product is not the one pictured above. There's a long story behind it, so i'll skip and get right to the review. The eyeliner pencils come in a variety of finishes - matte, pearl, glitter and metallic to cater to every whim and fancy. Celestial is a black eye pencil with silver glitter particles. The creamy formula dries in an instant and doesn't budge easily. It's a real standout in the collection. 

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

What's New From Kiko + Reviews

Kiko has been killing it with their recent collection, and here's a sampling of my favourite products...

Glow Potion Perfecting Serum: I purchased this product for two reasons: One it's called a 'glow potion' and two because of the gorgeous frosted bottle and rose gold packaging. But is the product any good? Depends on what you're looking for. The iridescent serum adds a subtle glow to the face and dries to a silky, smooth matte finish. It feels hydrating but definitely not a substitution for your nightly serums and moisturisers. It's a great makeup base that creates a smooth complexion. Suitable for all skin types - particularly great for people with oily skin.

Gossamer Emotion Creamy Lipstick: No the rose gold packaging didn't sway me, nor did the affordable price tag. What really swayed me was the creamy formula that delivers rich pigmented colour in just one swipe. I found two nude lip shades that perfectly complement my olive skin tone. I bought the shades 105 (pinkish brown) and 106 (mauve) because they're are so distinct yet look like my natural lip colour. With a good five to six hours of lasting power, these lipsticks can be worn sheer or built up to an opaque colour. The unique click packaging lends a luxe look to these lipsticks. A must-have in any lip wardrobe.

Intense Colour Long Lasting Eyeliner: My eyes get watery every time I apply eyeliner and I've tried every imaginable drugstore eyeliner but none have the lasting power as these Kiko ones do. Though it's not the blackest black eyeliner, it glides on smoothly without making my eyes water. It's seriously pigmented and delivers rich colour in one smooth stroke. I experience slight smudging at the end of the day but that's no biggie considering the eyeliners from Rimmel and Maybelline disappear after two hours. It comes with a smudging tool at the end which isn't of much use. To sum it up, I'd say this is a great bang for your buck eyeliner. 

Soft Touch Blush: Not a recent launch but I fell in love with this terracotta-pink blush the moment my eyes fell on it. I'm loving everything with a hint of brown and rust - autumn's changing hues is clearly reflecting in my makeup choices. This warm-toned blush perks up my skin in an instant. I've been wearing it everyday since I bought it because it adds a youthful flush to my face without looking too obvious. It's a highly pigmented matte blush that needs to be applied with a light touch to avoid looking like circus clown. 

Power Pro Nail Lacquer: This orange-y red nail colour is perfect for the upcoming festive season. The pigmented formula allows a flawless opaque colour in one coat. I can't say much about longevity because nail polishes don't last longer than two days on me. Not even with a seche vite top coat, so it'd be unfair to talk about it. Great formulation, great price, that's all. 

Friday, 16 October 2015

#Featured: Edition 6

Yes, I got featured for the sixth time in the links à mode. Truly an honour - Thank you IFB.

Now go read these awesome stories:

Links à la Mode, October 15
  1. Anonymous Beauty Blogger: 10 Must-Have Apps For Every Kind of Blogger
  2. Attire Club: The 2015 Men’s Halloween Style Guide
  3. Between the Racks: A Peek at My Day Job | Nuclear Power Edition
  4. Cammeo Head to Toe: Pink on Purpose | Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  5. Fashion, Trends, and More: Fall/Winter 2015 Trend Report | Lace It Up
  6. fash Up with Shivani: 10 Ways to Wrap a Scarf
  7. Greige Market: 5 Street Style Hacks to Master This Fall
  8. Hey Just Jei: 5 Wild Ways to Wear Wood
  9. I’m a Norbyah: To Trend or Not to Trend
  10. Les Assorties: Fashion for the Future
  11. Miss Trend She: 3 Reasons to Wear a Watch
  12. Modavracha: Pom Pom Shoe Trend
  13. Ms. FABulous: NY Bridal Week | THEIA Fall 2016
  14. Purushu Arie: Monday to Friday Men’s Corporate Dressing Guide
  15. Splash of Teal: Weekend Getaways | Victoria, BC, Tips, Outfits, Things To Do
  16. The Outfit Repeater: Where to Find New Bloggers to Follow
  17. The Wanderbliss: Jewelled by the Sun
  18. This Season’s Gold: Wear it Two Ways | Petite in Poncho and Knee Boots
  19. We Are Ready Made: Changes
  20. What Erika Wears: How to Improve Your Social Media Skills as an Influencer
SPONSOR: Shopbop Marc by Marc Jacobs, Club Monaco, Rebecca Minkoff, KTZ, Autumn Cashmere, Shelly Brown, Lace Up Boots, Burgundy Pants, Capes, Men's Clarks

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

10 Must-Have Apps for Every Kind of Blogger

apps for bloggers
Apps are revolutionising the way we use our smartphones, from helping us prioritise work to scheduling a lunch break pampering session, they're turning our phones into brilliantly efficient personal assistants.

Here's a list of ten must-have apps that's tailored to make your blogging life easier.

Fashion Blogger

1) FAD - Want to know the difference between a blouse and blouson? FAD has all the answers for you. FAD is a fashion dictionary app that helps you brush up on your vocabulary. I thought I knew all the words there is to know, but when my editor asked me what a gaiter was, I was truly lost for words. Apart from being a digital library of all the cool fashion lingo, it helps you learn about the sewing techniques, fabrics and the history behind some of the most classic pieces. Available on iOS

2) Keep - If you've ever lusted after a snap of that perfect white dress or that gorgeous suede shoes on Instagram, you can be rest assured that you'll find it on Keep. Keep is a treasure trove of all things trendy, it has a feature called OneCart, a universal shopping cart that allows you to buy products from any store, anywhere. It even has a shopable section called 'Shop Instagram', a curation of everything top influencers on Instagram are wearing. Available on iOS and Android.

Oh, and by the way, a gaiter is an overshoe that extends to the ankle or knee. 


Friday, 9 October 2015

Lisa Eldridge's Face Paint Book Launch

Lisa Eldridge Face Paint The Story Of Make Up Book Launch at Liberty London Lisaeldridge.com
When I saw Lisa Eldridge's post about her book launch, I immediately signed up to attend the pre-book launch at +Liberty London. After two days I received a mail saying it was sold out; I was really gutted but made up my mind to attend her event at another venue. Thankfully the stars aligned and a couple of days before the Liberty event, I got a confirmation that I was on the 5p.m list. Wohooo! My joy knew no bounds because getting to meet Lisa was a dream I never thought would ever come true. I braved all of London's transport mayhem to make it just in time for the launch. The event was held at the beautiful and cosy Heritage Suite in Liberty - the setting truly felt personal. 

A few minutes after we settled down with a champagne in hand, Lisa arrived looking ethereal in a black outfit to talk about her debut book Face Paint: The Story of Makeup. She talked about the research that went behind the book and how she was involved in every aspect of it. It's really fascinating to hear her talk because she's so passionate about the history of makeup and how it's impacted women over the centuries. She can really entrance you with her in-depth knowledge about the origins of makeup and trends. 

Once the event was over, she greeted everyone personally and signed their copy. Walking up to her was the most nervous moment of my life. I have an idiotic smile plastered over my face in the picture I took with her. I momentarily forgot my name and fumbled when she complimented my lipstick shade. But yes, it felt euphoric and I couldn't wipe that smile off my face for a long, long time. Dreams do come true, people. They certainly do. I'll leave you with the pictures from the event.


Monday, 5 October 2015

Photo Diary: Enchanting Strasbourg

Things To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame Cathedral"The more I contemplate the façade of the Cathedral, the more I am convinced of my first impression that its loftiness is linked to its beauty."- Goethe

Strasbourg, which sits right on the border of France and Germany is a picturesque medieval city that is full of canals and cobbled lanes. The emblem of the city is the magnificent Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Strasbourg, a red sandstone Gothic structure that is an architectural masterpiece. Petite France, the historical centre of the city is an otherworldly beauty with half-timbered houses and spectacular waterways. Dining options are stupendous, you can choose from the local Alsatian fare or head to a winstub for a boozy evening. This bewitching city offers a breathtaking sensory and gastronomical experience.

Things To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame CathedralThings To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame CathedralThings To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame Cathedral
Things To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame Cathedral Alsace

Things To Do In Strasbourg and Petite France Notre Dame Cathedral Alsace


Friday, 25 September 2015

Autumn Trilogy: 3 Things to Try This Fall

Autumn Trilogy Fall Beauty Products to Try Berry Lipstick
I love the changing colours of fall; everything looks whimsical and so much more beautiful. There's a distinct nip in the air, the streets are covered in withering russet-coloured leaves and everyone's bundled up in chunky sweaters. It's time to welcome the new season by swapping the sunny hues of summer for a more moodier palette. Autumn is the season of wine-stained lips and dark, moody nail colours. 

Here are three products to try this fall:


Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Review: Revlon Ultra HD Lipstick

Revlon Ultra HD Lipstick in Poinsettia and Gladiolus Review India Buy Online

The latest lipstick offering from Revlon offers high-impact colour while conditioning your pucker....

If you follow me on 
Instagram or Twitter, you'll know that I've been travelling all summer. I usually pack three to four lipsticks, but this time I only took two lipsticks with me and they more than lived up to their expectations. +Revlon UK Ultra HD Lipstick in Poinsettia and Gladiolus are the most glorious colours I've used in a while. The gel lipstick straddles the line between glossy and matte - it looks almost matte on me. 

The nourishing formula boasts saturated pigmentation and excellent longevity - it lasted through hours of eating and drinking (because that's what you do on a vacation, right?). The buttery formula has a silicone like slip to it which ensures quick and easy application. The best thing about these lipsticks are that you can use it like a stain or build it up for a super bold pout. They come in twenty beautiful shades ranging from pinks to corals and nudes to reds - the lipsticks are all named after flowers! Buttery, lightweight and long-lasting, these lipsticks will see you through all seasons.

It is a blue-based fuchsia that translates as red on my lips. A beautiful vibrant shade that's bright but not garish. I have a love-hate relationship with fuchsia lip shades, but it's definitely love at the moment. 

 An orange-y red that brightens up the complexion in an instant. I always gravitate towards warm reds because it suits my olive skin tone. If you need any more convincing, 
Emma Stone wore this shade at the SAG Awards. Go figure!

Friday, 18 September 2015

The Best Fast-Acting Face Mask

Lush Brazened Honey Mask Review India UK Price Buy Online

It turns out that revitalised and hydrated skin comes in an unassuming black tub, read on to know more...

My skin is usually well behaved but last week it decided to take a nosedive after I fell asleep with a full face of makeup. My skin felt parched and I had spots all over my chin. For emergency situations like these, Lush Brazened Honey is my go-to mask for instant brightness and clarity. It's loaded with skin-beneficial ingredients like free range eggs, honey and almond oil which help to maintain the skin's natural moisture levels; fennel and ginger detoxify the skin while kaolin clay draws out the impurities and improves skin texture. I smothered a generous layer and let it do its magic. 

The mask has a coarse and grainy texture that smoothes and refines the skin without aggravating it. Unlike other clay masks, it doesn't tighten or crack, however it crumbles once it's dried.  After 20 minutes, I rinsed off the mask to see that my stressed-out skin had responded to it very well. The verdict? My skin looked a whole lot clearer and happier come morning - the mask is really a saviour! My skin has looked great since with no blemishes or spots. The only downside is it's not the most fragrant mask, it has a strange herbal-floral scent which I'm not particularly fond of. If you can get past the scent, this mask is a great SOS skincare product to have in your beauty closet.  

What are your favourite face masks from +LUSH?

Monday, 14 September 2015

Bloggers London Fashion Week #BLFW 2015

Bloggers London Fashion Week #BLFW 2015 OXO Tower Bloggers Hangout
On Monday, I attended The Bloggers London Fashion Week (#BLFW) hosted by Bloggers Hangout at the iconic OXO Tower near South Bank. The upscale venue overlooking the Thames River proved to be the perfect setting for an afternoon of schmoozing. The dress code was 'All Black Chic' and if you wanted a lesson in how to work all-black outfits, the event would have been a perfect example. I wore a classic lace underlay black dress with strappy heels and accessorised with dainty pearl earrings. The event had several brands showcasing their latest launches and upcoming fall collections.
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