project no jeans update

Friday, 30 November 2012

If you can cast your mind back to the end of October where I posted about doing a project no jeans month in November, you will remember that it's now the end of November! (Woah, where did the time go?!)

Just a little recap...I set myself the challenge to not wear jeans for the entire month of November whereby after the challenge, I will be treated to a wee prize (namely, MAC's Woodwinked eyeshadow). So, how did I fare?

I DID NOT WEAR JEANS FOR THE ENTIRE MONTH! Success! I really enjoyed doing this challenge as I found some nice pieces that I hadn't worn in a while and I enjoyed being a bit more creative with my outfit choices too. I feel so much more body confident now and although I yearned sometimes to just throw on a pair of jeans to nip outside, I refrained and made a bit more of an effort. I will definitely consider other items of clothing in my wardrobe first before going for the standard jeans and t-shirt combo. And because it's the festive season too...who doesn't love a bit of creativity?!

As to the reward...I decided against MAC's Woodwinked as I heard UD Naked Palette had a great dupe for it so I didn't really see the point of having two of the same shade! I decided to splurge on a MAC lipstick instead and thankfully Debenhams had 10% off their beauty department!

So did you do project no jeans months with me too? How have you done? 



washi tape.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

'What on earth is washi tape?' I hear ya ask! Well, it's essentially masking tape that originated from Japan. But this isn't just ordinary masking tape that you can pick up from your local B&Q...they have a wide array of prints and colours to match your mood or use. They can be used for crafts, scrap booking, book marking, decoration or adding a simple touch to wrapping a present.

If you know me by now, you'll know that I am all about the crafts! I've decided to put a bit more thought into the smaller details of my life, whether it be giving gifts to others, learning new skills or creating something unique. Washi tape come in about a gazillion different patterns and colours so you can understand that it would take me a while to decide which ones I wanted.

I headed over to ebay and found this seller that sold some really pretty patterns. I picked out a blue one with hearts and clouds, an antique-y clock type one and my favourite one of them with SNOWFLAKES! I'm intending on using this to tape up my Christmas presents this year rather than boring old sellotape. It'll be great for presents too because it is masking tape, it won't rip the wrapping paper so if you're a bit thrifty like can save the pretty wrapping paper to admire for later!

The washi tape is fairly inexpensive and I got them at £1.74 each plus £0.70 P&P from the ebay seller but you can do your own research to find different patterns that you would like.

Have you ever used washi tape before? Do you love being a bit creative, especially around this time of year?



my shopping experience: jo malone

Friday, 23 November 2012

I don't often comment or note my shopping experience when I'm in a particular store. I'm usually in and out without so much as a hello from me! But I must say, Jo are amazing!

My friend loves Jo Malone so as it was her birthday a few weeks ago, I decided to treat her to a little bespoke something. I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to get her but I had heard about the little Christmas cracker gift set that were really popular last year and it was fairly within my price range. I set off on a cold Winter's evening with money in my pocket and a cheeky smile on my face.

I stepped into the bright and warm store and was welcomed by several staff members. I started wandering around a little and was a bit overwhelmed by the choices available but as I was coming to the end of my thought, a sales assistant kindly came over. I asked about the Christmas cracker gift set and she told me that they had already sold out of them. SOLD OUT AT THE BEGINNING OF NOVEMBER? People be crazy! We had a wee laugh and joke about how quickly it had sold out but she had quickly suggested other alternatives. 

I had settled on getting a single fragrance instead and the sales assistant whipped out a few tester strips and I was in my element smelling the different fragrances. Not once did she rush my decision and she had really good knowledge of the different scents. One even reminded me of my Summer in 2010 and it surprisingly was released in 2010! Oh the irony. I settled on a blackberry and bay scent and it was lovingly wrapped in a gift box and tied in a pretty ribbon. I happily parted with my hard earned cash and they even set up a little fragrance profile thing for me and gave me a small sample of perfume for myself. 

My friend loved her gift and she squealed happily as she untied the ribbon on the box. I had planned on writing this post a few days ago and then today, I received a handwritten note card from Jo Malone (not the actual lady herself!) thanking me for shopping at Jo Malone and that I hope I enjoyed their Aberdeen boutique. It's the small touches that matter and I must say, 5 star service and customer care from them, even after I've stepped out of the store!

Yes, their items are fairly pricey but they make fantastic gifts and their store is so fresh and bright. I won't shy away from these high end boutiques anymore for sure.

Have you ever had an amazing shopping experience before? Whether at Jo Malone or another store?



review: real techniques stippling brush

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

I'm sure you're all sick to the back teeth of these real technique brush reviews but I thought I would throw my review into the mix for all that it's worth! These brushes have caused quite a storm amongst the blogging/vlogging community and I can see why!

I had been waiting so long to get my hands on some real technique brushes and the stippling brush was top of the list so when Boots had their 3 for 2 offer on, I rushed down to my local Boots and snapped it up. Although they had a wide range of different brushes, I don't wear eyeshadow on a daily basis and the core collection looked too intimidating for me!

Why had I waited so long to buy this?! It's bloomin' brilliant! Everything about the brush makes it easy to control, the bristles are so soft and I've not had any shedding yet (even after several washes)! I use it mainly for foundation and it picks up and blends it very well. The brush head is small enough to get into all the areas of the face and does a great job if you need to concentrate on specific areas. It would do well for cream blushes as well, but I have yet to try it out in that way. 

At £11.99, it is slightly pricey for one brush but it's so well made and pretty much ticks all the boxes! In my opinion, I would wait until Boots has one of their amazing offers on and take advantage of it to stock up on some of the other brushes in their range.  

Have you tried this brush out yet? What other brushes would you recommend from their range?



hong kong haulin'

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Oh how I wish I could have visited Hong Kong this year. I love the environment and the atmosphere plus, the shopping there is uh-mazing! MamaOrchid was over in Hong Kong last week and I asked her to pick me up a few things. Although it's not an overly massive haul, it warrants a little post I think.

It's really difficult to get phone cases for Samsung Galaxy S2 here so my mum picked up this cute blue phone case that has an anchor on it. It actually reminded me a little of Jennie from sailboat. My phone is prepared for any of my clumsy tendencies now!

Majolica Majorca's cream pencil eyeliner is actually one of my favourite eyeliners. I needed a full sized pencil because the one I had was a mini sample. I better get using eyeliner because my mum ended up buying me 2. No idea why!

I wanted to try the Dolly Wink liquid eyeliner but my mum wasn't aware which one I wanted so she took a stab in the dark and went for the pencil liner. It's not a big deal, but now I have 3 black pencil eyeliners. I'd be interested to see how this one fares though.

Last but not least, I got some 'My Beauty Diary' face masks which I'm really excited about using. It's a two-step system that also contains a moisturiser. I love sheet masks, they're so much easier to use than regular face masks. That's the lazy girl in me coming out!

I also got some other random goodies like new lunchboxes, sweeties and a big hug from my Mama! I hope that next year I'll be able to take a trip to Hong Kong myself. Fingers crossed!



sunday summary #17 (on a monday): edinburgh edition

Monday, 12 November 2012

A day late, but you'll forgive me...right?

If you follow me on Twitter (@ParisianOrchid), you will know that I was in Edinburgh over the weekend. My oldest uni friend lives in Kirkcaldy and her family always welcomes me for a visit so with a few free days off at the weekend, I decided to ride the rail down South and enjoy a well-rested break. 

My friend had planned a jam-packed day so we kicked off the morning with a lovely coffee and breakfast at The Elephant House. Sound familiar? That's where JK Rowling wrote Harry Potter. So you could say, the birthplace of Harry Potter. My friend knows how much I love HP so this was fantastic. Oh how I loved it in there!

We mosied on up to Edinburgh Castle next. I had been before but I had never gone in so it was great to be immersed in Scottish history and dusty rooms! Oh and the views from up there are amazing! 

It was great being a kid again in Camera Obscura which is an optical illusion place. I had never seen it before but it was filled with crazy mirrors, camera illusions, fun games, mirror maze and just general cool things. Me and my friend looked crazy running around the place like kids in a candy shop!

My friend being the awesome person she is, researched all the closes and wynds down the Royal Mile and conducted a mini tour for me! I saw some of the spookiest places and even made a wish on the Heart of Midlothian (I'm not even sure if that's what you would do!) I learnt a lot actually and it was interesting to see the Signet Library which makes my inner law nerd happy! It was proper driech but made it all the more better!

We headed to Harvey Nichols later in the day and had a chocolate fondue in the chocolate lounge. Oh. Em. Gee. It was death by chocolate for sure but so yummy at the same time! After a little wander down Princes Street, we wanted to end the day with our traditional Hard Rock Cafe dinner but with luck never on our side, it was a very long wait so we headed over to TGI Fridays where the wait was a little more acceptable. Finished the night with delicious cocktails and food then went back home to Kirkcaldy where we caught up with The X Factor and a good ol' gossip!

It was all over a little too quickly and I came down from a high quite suddenly and got the Monday morning blues. I'm at that stage in my life where work is the main focal point so whenever I get any time off or a free weekend, I want it to be filled with adventures and activities!

Have you all had a great weekend?



what's in my bag?: a wash bag edition

Friday, 9 November 2012

I'm doing a little travelling this week and heading a wee bit down South to visit my friend in Kirkcaldy and do some exploring in the glorious capital of Edinburgh. I always find it hard to fit all my skincare essentials in one bag so I thought I would do an overview of the type of things I bring with me for a small weekend away.

I don't really know where I got the travel bag from. I think my Grandma left it here when she came to visit a long time ago and I've just kind of adopted it as my own. It's a really good size and has a hanging loop on it. It may not look pretty but it does the job well!

  • Origins Checks and Balances Facewash
  • Origins Make a Difference Skin Tonic
  • Origins Lightweight Moisturiser
  • Dove Maximum Protection Deodorant 
  • The Body Shop Coconut Oil Hairshine
  • Toothbrush and Toothpaste
  • Charles Worthington Heat Defence Spray
  • Small Travel Bottles of Shampoo, Conditioner and Shower Gel
  • Facewipes
  • Perfume
  • A few cotton pads 
Ta da! And they all fit neatly in the bag without so much having to squeeze the bag shut! I wish they did travel versions of everything as I do a lot of travelling but I guess this will have to do for now.

What are your travel essentials in your wash bag?



fotd: shine bright like a diamond

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Awkward smile o_O

Ahhh, don't you just love annual leave days? Being cooped up in one room and stuck to one chair for 10 hours at a time really makes your appreciate days off more. Today, I went off to the cinema! I'm enjoying this Cineworld Unlimited card malarky already!

I made a bit more effort with my makeup today and broke out my UD Naked palette. I'm working on a little photography project with my brother later tonight so I wanted to look slightly more human than usual.

Surprisingly, I've really loved using Rimmel's Match Perfection foundation. I'm absolutely terrible at colour matching my skin to drugstore foundation but I've finally made the right choice! Success! (Review on this will be on soon!)

Do you like to jam pack your days off or do you prefer to chill out at home?



sunday summary #16

Sunday, 4 November 2012

I may have missed last week's Sunday Summary, mainly because I had absolutely nothing to report that week as I had been working non stop but I think I've got a good 'un for you this week!

I went to the grand opening of my friend's new restaurant at the beginning of the week and I must say, everything looks amazing! They even had an ice cream cart there. Chocolate and pear gelato was delicious! I'm so happy for him and everyone who has worked so hard in the past year to get it up and running. Can't wait to go back there in a few weeks and sample some of their delights.

I've never really paid much attention to Halloween but it's become a little tradition of ours that me and my brother always carve pumpkins together on Halloween and then determine which one is the most spookiest! My brother's one this year was a grim reaper and I did a flaming jack lantern. Not trying to win points here, but mine is still standing whilst my brother's one had to get chucked in the bin because it was already moulding. I think I win on that alone!

I finally bit the bullet and subscribed to a Cineworld Unlimited card. I tell no lies that I had actually been considering this for about 2 years! Ever since my student status ended I've been disappointed by having to pay about £8.00 for a ticket. I love movies and going to the cinema on my own so it'll be put to good use!

Another week over and a brand new one to begin. I can hardly believe we're in November already! It's almost CHRISTMAS!

What have you been doing this week?



boots haulin'

Friday, 2 November 2012

We all love a good bargain don't we? I decided to take up some of the offers that Boots had and stocked up on a few little bitties that I had my eye on.

  • Real Techniques Stippling Brush: when Boots had their 3 for 2 offer on, I knew that a Real Techniques brush would be making its way into my basket. I decided to go for the stippling brush as I felt I would get the most use out of this one. My gosh, it is amazing! I use it for blending in my foundation and it just creates a lovely flawless finish. Get it. Get it now.
  • Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation: I only own 1 other foundation so i thought it would be a good idea to branch out and try another. I went for the Match Perfection one and I await tentatively until I can use it as I'm always so rubbish at colour matching foundation. Holding my breath!
  • Barry M Red Glitter Nail Polish: I need Christmas in my life now. And you can never get bored of glittery nail polish. Especially of the red kind.
  • Nivea Lip Butter (Caramel Cream): I really don't need another lip butter or lip balm but my curiosity got the better of me. This smells so good! Better than the Creme Brulee Vaseline as this has a more rich smell. Mmmmm.
I justified all this by saying that I needed it all so I can blog about it. Yes. It works.

What have you been loving/buying recently?