Monday, 30 March 2015

Monthly Roundup | March

For me March has been a ridiculously busy, ridiculously exciting & a ridiculously grown up month!... March is the month that Dan & I have bought our first house! Eeeek! We've been saving for such a long time & now it's finally happened, it feels like a bit of a whirlwind - Everything's going so fast & there's so many 'serious' forms to fill in, it's a completely mental situation... Mental exciting though! I can't wait for us to have BBQ's out in the garden in summer, get decorating the house exactly how we want & get a beagle puppy! I can't fricken wait to get a beagle puppy!

Understandably this month my blog has taken an iddy biddy back seat with everything that's been going on with the house, however March for me has been an intriguing month blogwise. March has been the month of discovering lots of new brands & having some brill opportunities....

Beauty Matters.
I had the opportunity earlier in the month to venture down to Garforth for the grand reopening of the Beauty Matters salon. The salon was absolutely stunning & getting to see first hand some of the non surgical procedures available was really interesting. I watched a lady having 3D Liposuction & another having semi permanent eyebrows tattoed on, which does sound a little bit eeek, but it was super interesting, I'm even fancying getting my own eyebrows done at some point, they were that good!

More recently I had the pleasure of receiving & test driving a few Younique goodies. I'll be honest & say I'd previously not heard of any of the Younique products available, but boy was I impressed. They are a little on the pricey side admittedly, but the quality in particular of the lip glosses & foundations are brill! 

March has also been the month of discovering some new fantastic products - A few of them I haven't had chance to write full blog posts about yet, so I won't ramble on too much about them, but here's what I've been enjoying this month...

Environ AVST 1*
I received this little tube of goodness at the Beauty Matters event earlier this month. Environ offer various levels of vitamin A in the AVST range, obviously the bottle I have is the first level & it's reccomended to go through two of these level 1 bottles before moving up to level 2 & 3. I've been using this product now for just under a month, which isn't the longest amount of time to be trialling a skincare product, but it really has worked wonders for my skin. I'll have a full blog post up at some point soon hopefully.
Soap & Glory Solar Powder
I've never really been that into bronzing, I'm much more of a peach blush type of gal, but just recently Solar Powder has creeped into my make up bag & got real comfy there. I love that it's not too dark & in your face - It's perfect for people just starting out with bronzer because the pan has two shades, one quite tan & matte, the other being more of a highlighting shimmer - It's a great mix & super duper wearable!
Radley Stainless Steel Watch*
There are some perks to my job, one of them being winning this beautiful Radley watch! My jewellery is categorised into gold & silver piles, but one thing I've been lacking is a silver watch so winning the Radley competition came at just the right time. The face has chronograph dials in rose gold too, which I think looks perfect against the silver stainless steel.
Monki Miracle Purse*
Another win, I've been so luck recently - I seriously need to start putting the lottery on! I won the purse from a blog competition & have been using it religiously for the past three/four weeks. I never carry cash on me, but I have endless amounts of bank/store/loyalty cards so this purse works perfectly for me. And it's black & black goes with everything! Wahoo!

Like I said, blogging has kind of taken a back seat this month with everything that's been going on with the house, but there are a few blog posts that I've really enjoyed reading & have stuck in my mind this month...

Thumbelina Lillie | Walking the red carpet with New Look.
Even though I no longer live in Middlesbrough, it's something that I'm ridiculously proud of & make sure it's something I shout & scream about. I love being from the North East & seeing my fellow NE Blogger Megan achieving something so amazing as being invited by New Look to travel down to London for the Insurgent premiere, it's just insane! It made me feel all proud & excited for Megan, her blog is unbelievably good & she completely deserves the recognition for it. Go NE Bloggers!

Lydia Rose | Instagram tips for bloggers.
Oh my goodness! My instagram is looking so hot right now & it's all down to Lydia Rose! The main pointer that stuck out for me was having a theme! Previously my instagram was a bit all over the place but after reading Lydia's tips & tricks I truly believe it's come on leaps and bounds - I'm so happy with it at the moment!

Have you guys set yourselves any themes with Instagram? I'd love some more links to check out so send them my way!

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Friday, 27 March 2015

Beauty | Feeling All Younique*

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of getting to know (and having a long ass chat about lip gloss with) Kerry Goding, a super motivated presenter for the cosmetics brand, Younique. I had limited knowledge on the company, but knew Younique ran a little like Avon in the sense that it's individual presenters running their own business on their own terms, but with regards to products I barely had a clue; However after doing some research into the brand & liaising with Kerry, I knew I couldn't say no - I was super excited to test drive some new products!

I was lucky enough to sample eight products, which let me tell you is only a tiny snippet of what Younique has to offer! As well as being online, they have a 53 page brochure available with a variety of products ranging from the Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lash Mascara, which looks amazing, to luxurious brushes & gift sets that would make perfect presents.

I'm so grateful to have received the following beauty bits & bobs...
Lucrative Lip Gloss in shade Lovesick*
Divine Daily Moisturiser*
BB Flawless Complexion Enhancers in shades Bisque* & Honey*
Glorious Face & Eye Primer*
Moodstruck Precision Pencil Eye Liner in Precarious*
Uplift Eye Serum*

Lucrative Lip Gloss in shade Lovesick*
Out of everything, I was most intrigued by the Lucrative Lip Gloss! I discussed my life long lip gloss dilemma with Kerry last week... My dilemma being that I've never, ever, met a lip gloss I've liked! Normally the formula of lip glosses drive me mad, I hate the stickiness & gloopy texture you get with more products, but this has really blown me away! The lucrative lip gloss has such a light, non sticky formula, it's an absolute dream to apply & so easy to wear, it's like nothing like I've tried before. I didn't want to like it, but actually I really do! Packaging wise this reminds me of the I-Gloss because of it's rectangular design & side mirror... However I'm afraid the I-Gloss has one over on the Lucrative Lip Gloss as Younique's offering didn't have an illuminating light. That's just me being picky though! The colour isn't nearly as bold on the lips as it is in the bullet, but it's still really pretty & girlie, and for me with glosses, it's more about getting the formula right... And Younique completely do!

Uplift Eye Serum*
I don't know if I quite fit the target audience for this product, that didn't stop me giving it a bloody good go though! I'm not too familiar with eye serums but I greatly enjoyed experimenting with & using this product. It applied with the same feeling as a primer, however this mattifying texture soon vanished within my under eye area & left my skin feeling all dewy, supple & soft. Looks wise I haven't noticed much difference around my eye area, the product claims to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles however fortunately I don't have these.... Yet!

BB Flawless Complexion Enhancers in shades Bisque* & Honey*
If you're a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that I'm very stuck in my ways when it comes to bases. I've been using the same foundation since pretty much discovering make up & I rarely stray from my ever trusty Wake Me Up Concealer. Rather than a foundation this base is classed as a complexion enhancer which is a concept I really like, it's more along the lines of 'my skin but better'. The shade Bisque obviously works better for me as I'm a pretty pale gal, but I have been using the darker shade honey to add a bit of contour to my face. A little goes a long way with this Complexion Enhancer, it literally took a few dots of the product onto my face and after blending it in with a Real Techniques brush it looked completely flawless! It's really long lasting which surprised me as it's such a lightweight product, I've happily worn this all day and not had a thing to worry about.

Divine Daily Moisturiser*
I'm really big into moisturising at the moment, and feel at the ripe old age of 24 I've got a pretty good morning & night time routine going. The Divine Daily Moisturiser is a lovely product, it's really soft on the skin & feels really nourishing however it doesn't beat the Environ AVST 1 I'm using at the moment. I don't feel like I can say too much about this product, I wish I could give you a more constructive review, but I really have found a skincare routine that works perfectly for me.

Glorious Face & Eye Primer*
Because I'm super duper lazy I don't normally use primers, I know some people swear by them but for me I don't feel it's necessary. Over the past week I've been using Youniques' Glorious Face & Eye Primer and although it acted as a brilliant base for applying my make up, I wouldn't say it helped my cosmetics last longer....Although I have been using it with the BB Flawless Complexion Enhancer which I found lasted a pretty long time anyway!... Maybe I should have tried it with my regular foundation?

I'm so glad I had this beautiful, deep lilac shade sent over! Since having a makeover at Harvey Nichols a little while ago & noticing how well purple shades brought out my green eyes, I literally can't get enough of the colour! The Moodstruck Precision Pencil applied really well, it wasn't scratchy, in fact it was really soft & creamy on the lid. It lasts all day too, I quite often have problems with eye makeup not lasting on my peepers, but this was brill! I don't know about you, but I (really really really) hate sharpening eye pencils, because they never sharpen like real pencils do they? They always end up half broken so nine times out of ten, I'll opt for a twist up applicator. I've still got that to test with the Moodstruck Precision Pencil so fingers crossed!

I'm really impressed with the Younique products I've been lucky enough to try, it really does pave a way for the rest of their products & I'd be really confident purchasing other cosmetics. I'm absolutely flabbergasted by the lip gloss! I feel like I've been searching for such a long time to find a formula that I like & I've finally blooming found it with the Lucrative Lip Gloss* - It's amazing! Something I'd like to try is the Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lash Mascara, it looks incredible, and claims to take your lashes from okay to oh wow! 

Thank you so much to Kerry for gifting me with these products & introducing me to Younique!

Lots of love | Claireabella.x


Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Beauty | My Nail Polish Collection

I'll be honest, this one's even a bit of a shocker to me!... I like nail polishes as much as the next girl, but it was only when I was sorting through my bedroom a few days ago, that I discovered actually how many polishes I own... A grand total of 31!

Is 31 many?... Because it really surprised me! I think because I keep my polishes on the bottom shelf of my vanity desk, my collection kind of grew without me knowing. Anyhow, today I'll be discussing with you a couple of my favourite brands & shades.

Probably my favourite brand when it comes to nail polishes.I really love the formula Rimmel use with their polishes, I've found them to be the easiest to apply & some of the longest lasting polishes I own. The applicator brush is the perfect size & covers the nails with three quick swishes, I wouldn't necessarily say they dry in 60 seconds but I'm still really pleased with these polishes. I've gone for bold shades with Rimmel as I think they're one of the best polishes out there, go bold or go home right. From a price point of view Rimmel again tick all the boxes for me, the colours here have cost me a grand total of £2.99 each - Thats less than my lunch at work! My favourite is the lasting finish in strawberry fizz, not only is it a stunning, long lasting hot pink colour, but it genuinely smells of strawberries too!

For me Essie are one of the more luxuriously branded high street polishes, the packaging's super duper sleek, they have a huge colour choice & apply like a dream. Essie polishes have a great consistency & apply really easily however on me, the colour can chip quite quickly. It wouldn't put me off buying more though, especially when they have such a plush colour range. The polishes are slightly more expensive than the rest I'm going to be talking about, coming in at £7.99 each, but I think they're fab. My favourite in Mint Candy Apple, it'll look brilliant over spring time when all the pastel colours come back on trend.

Barry M.
Even with their cosmetics line, I see Barry M as being at the forefront for displaying the most fantastic colour spectrum. The formulation of the Barry M polishes are great, they're really easy to apply & have an especially long brush so you can get right into the very corners of your nails. I like the square glass bottle packaging, as they're pretty similar to the Essie cases - I think they look really sleek & expensive sitting on my vanity desk. I love Barry M's Gelly Hi Shines however it's their glitters than really catch my eye - I wear the Mermaid glitter from the Aquarium range, both on its' own & over other green/blue shades. I love both effects & can't wait to expand my collection. Barry M have a huge (& I mean huge) selection of glitter/sequin polishes starting at £3.99.

I actually received these Seventeen polishes as a gift set last Christmas & have been rather impressed with them. The formula is lighter than the others, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing; Being lighter, the product doesn't gloop or stick - It's a really nice inbetweeny polish! Seventeen isn't a brand I would have necessarily tried before, but I'm glad I was gifted with these little beauties. I received a fab colour collection however it's the metalic shades Fury & Copper than I've been reaching for more. They're such fashion forward colours - I love them!

So what do you think to my collection? Is 31 polishes really that many?

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Fashion | Khaki Aztec Cape

So look who's got an outfit post... La la la la la! I've been so busy recently that I've barely had time to put together any outfit posts, or good ones anyway, but I'll tell you more about that though in March's monthly roundup! That'l be more of a 'grab a coffee & some biccies' kind of post. 
Anyway, today Dan & I had a super chilled out day, it's our first day off together for a very long time so we decided to spend some quality time together by having a picnic & going for a walk along the Calderdale Way.
Todays' outfit is practical yet stylish, plus I seemed to have been living in this cape for the last fortnight so I couldn't not wear it again today!

I keep telling myself that I haven't treated myself to anything recently, but when I saw this cape in Primark (in the sale might I add) I had to let it fall in my basket. I was drawn to the aztec pattern because I'm a complete sucker for geometric prints, plus I liked the addition of colour (but not too much colour) into my wardrobe. The fit is really flattering, which sounds silly because basically it's just a humongous blanket, but it looks really fab on - I particularly love the way it swishes - All girlie & princessy! It's really thick and cosy too, so perfect for this time of year, I've found this such a transitional piece & I'm going to get so much more wear out of it! It's quickly becoming one of my favourite pieces! The rest of my outfit is super simple, I think this is the only way I'll wear this outfit as it pulls main focus onto my fabulous cape. 

Is there any more aztec print capes I should have my eyes on?

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Cape - Primark (£9.00)
Jeans - Miss Selfridge (£32.00)
Turtle Neck - Marks & Spencer (£15.00)
Boots - Timberland (£44.99)
Necklace - Primark (£4.00)
Bag - Present*

Friday, 20 March 2015

Event | Beauty Matters

The best part of being a blogger is having the opportunity to attend some pretty spectacular events, and last week I was invited to the grand relaunch of Beauty Matters in Garforth, Leeds.
Beauty Matters is a long established independent beauty brand with two salons based in Leeds, one in Rothwell & the other in Garforth. As well as doing the usual beauty salon treatments, Beauty Matters also offer non surgical treatments such as 3D Liposuction, Botox and Semi Permanent Makeup Tattooing. I'm not at an age where I feel these procedures would be necessary however I'm still highly interested in the treatments and I wouldn't rule them out in the future.

We were greeted with a super warm welcome, a glass of fizz & a whole load of canapes... Which is always the best way to start a blogger event! Along with other nibbles, I had the most delicious chocolate mousse with crushed almonds on top. It was so tasty, but it'd be so easy to recreate so I might have to try it sometime. 
With a glass of champagne in hand, I then tootled off to take a look at some of the available treatments.

I then ventured across to a room where Beauty Matters were displaying the first of their non surgical treatments, the 3D Liposuction. This type of treatment has seemingly taken the celebrity world by storm and it's no wonder with the innovative technologies the 3D Lipo has to offer. The suction process kills 20% - 40% of localised fat & deep cellulite, however this isn't something that's apparent straight away, it's more over the course of several months where you should notice the difference. Treatments range between £40 and £210 and have had rave reviews by various members of the Beauty Matters team. The lady sitting for the one hour treatment advised me that it was completely painless, if anything it was cold, but apart from that she felt completely comfortable.

I then popped into the treatment room next door where they were doing a skin analysis. This is always something that has fascinated me as I'm really big on skincare and am always wanting to learn how to improve my morning & nighttime skincare routine. I put my face into the rather alien looking analysis machine and have to say I was pretty surprised with the results. The scanner checked for blocked pores, uneven textures, skin damage & so much more. What I was surprised at is how good my skin actually is! I seemed to have passed with flying colours... Apart from sun damage! My face is ridiculously skin damaged, I really need to start using products with higher SPF's. What I was advised is that my face has 24 years of skin damage, it's not something that's happened recently so hopefully if I gradually change my beauty products to ones with an SPF it'll help to a certain extent in combating my sun damaged skin.

Now onto a biggie for me! Semi permanent makeup! If there's one treatment I would love to have, it's semi permanent eyebrows. My eyebrow game can be pretty strong, but let me tell you, it takes a good fifteen minutes to get them all arched & perfect so having something like this would be a massive help. Semi permanent makeup differs slightly to a tattoo where they only use pigment instead of ink and when they apply the pigment it sits just under the first layer of skin as opposed to under deeper layers. The pigment lasts for around 5 years however a lot of ladies top theirs up after a couple of years. Prices are available upon request, however I was advised it would cost around £200 for the procedure, which for 5 years worth of eyebrows is pretty good!... If only my boyfriend agreed!

I then got to have a nosey around the rest of the salons treatment rooms where they do the more standard procedures such as tanning, waxing & massages. All rooms were very clean & tidy, and super inviting. When I arrived I was gifted with a little goodie bag full of Environ skincare products as well as a £10 off voucher for the salon. I'll definitely be making good use of the voucher, I just can't decide which treatment to have yet. Decisions decisions! 

Have you ever tried any of these treatments before? I'd love to have a snoop if you did!

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Fashion | My Watch Collection

If there's one thing I've really become passionate about since working in a Jewellers it's watches! My love for watches has grown & grown and I'm forever hunting out the next bit of wrist candy I can get my hands (and staff discount) on.

Lets take a closer look at my little collection...

DKNY Stone Set Ceramic Watch *
I am a huge lover of ceramic watches!.. It sounds strange to say, but I absolutely love the way the ceramic feels on the wrist, especially on a morning when they're all lovely & cold! It's like the cold side of the pillow, that's always better right? Anywho... I really like the contrast between the white ceramic & yellow gold, I think they look fab together - I often pair this with my yellow gold Vivienne Westwood bracelet which looks brill! They also do this watch in a silver & rose gold finish which are equally as lovely! I love the packaging that comes with DKNY watches, I think you can really tell the quality of an item from the way it's displayed.

Guess Navy & Grey Mini Sunrise Watch *
Isn't this the most beautiful unusual watch? I haven't seen anything like this at all so when it came on the shelves last year, I knew I had to have it. In fact my beaut parents bought me this for Christmas -Woohoo for parents! I thought the navy blue might mean this watch would be more difficult to wear, but honestly I've barely put it down. This is the fist chronograph watch I've owned, I love the trio of dials featured on the dark blue face, I think it's a really 'cool' looking watch! One thing I'm not a fan of it the packaging with Guess watches, in my eyes (and I hate to say it) it looks quite chavy, I think it has the ability to be just that bit better! 

Radley Stainless Steel Watch *
I never thought I would be, but I've grown into a complete lover of all things mixed metal. With this watch being both silver & rose gold, it really makes me feel all happy inside! It's super duper shiny too, which I love! The face of this Radley watch is pretty domed which I think is a rather marmite situation (love it or hate it), thankfully though I love it - I think it works well as there are a lot of curved elements within this chronograph watch. Radley watches are all packaged in these super cute mint green & baby pink boxes, making them feel really lovely & girlie!

I've got a list as long as my arm for future watch purchases!... I've seen so many Michael Kors and Daniel Wellington watches circling the blogsphere, that are lovely, but I don't want something that everybody else has. Brand names don't bother me too much, as long as it's a lovely looking watch that's all I'm in for!

Have any of you guys got these watches? Have you got any reccomendations for anything else that's a bit unusual?

Lots of love | Claireabella.x


Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Guest Post | Emmas' Perfume Collection

Hello! I'm Emma from Just Emma, and today I am taking over xclaireabella to share my fragrance collection with you! I hope you enjoy this post, and please do have a little wander over to my blog to see Claire's very own fragrance collection!

Victoria's Secret Strawberries & Champagne Refreshing Body Mist, £14.99 £7.51/250ml.
This genuinely smells like strawberries and champagne! It has quite a strong, fresh and sweet scent at first, which fades to a lighter version of the scent. This is really handy for a quick freshen up and is really refreshing as a mist. 
The Body Shop Vanilla Body Mist, £7.50/100ml.
Although this is a body mist, I often use it as a room fragrance! This body mist is really nice to use during the warmer months, as it is really refreshing to spritz all over your skin! It has a real musky yet sweet vanilla scent, but isn't over-powering.

Christian Dior J'adore EDT, £54.50/50ml.
This has been a long-time favourite of mine and when I'm lucky enough to receive it as a gift, I ration it as it's pretty expensive! Something I'd probably never buy for myself. This is such a classic, sophisticated and feminine scent; fruity, sweet and warm, with notes such as jasmine, rose, musk, and vanilla.
Beckham Intimately Beckham EDT, RRP £24.95 £11.99/75ml.
Now, this particular perfume is pretty special as it's the scent I wore on my wedding day! A little over-powering at first, but with notes such as orange blossom, vanilla, and bergamot, this soon converts into a gorgeously feminine, musky, floral bouquet which lingers on the skin long after application. 
Di Palomo Orange Blossom, Honey & Olive EDP, RRP £24.95 £19.96/50ml.
This long-lasting fragrance really captures the essence of summer! This is a really sweet, fruity and refreshing scent with notes such as orange blossom, honey, geranium, and amber. I love to wear this in spring and summer as it just seems to suit the seasons so well.

Avril Lavigne Forbidden Rose EDP, RRP £20 £9.95/50ml.
This is a strong, yet not over-powering, unique fragrance with notes such as wine peach accord, chocolate, vanilla, and red apple. This is long-lasting and definitely an evening perfume for me. A predominantly warm, musky and slightly floral scent. 
Alex Curran Alex EDT, RRP £19.95 £8.99/100ml.
This is a really easy-to-wear, everyday feminine fragrance. With notes such as black pepper accord, vanilla, musk, and tonka bean, this has a musky and sweet scent with fruity accents. 
Coty Ex'cla-ma'tion EDC, RRP £13.95 £4.99/50ml.
This is another one which has to fade a little to be fully appreciated, as it's quite strong at first. This contains notes of peach, apricot, amber, and sandalwood, so it is a slightly musky, fruity, sweet fragrance, which is quite long-lasting. 

What's your favourite fragrance at the moment?


Monday, 9 March 2015

Beauty | The Soap & Glory Eye

If there’s one makeup item that I believe can fully transform a look from day to night, or take you from naturally natural to va va voom… It’s got to be eyeliner!
Eyeliner can be the product of dreams when applied correctly. Granted it can be very difficult to get the perfect cat eye flick, but we’re not going to be talking about that because… And get ready to be shocked… I’m not a fan of the look! On other people I think the cat eye flick looks great, but on me I really don’t like it, oddly i think it gives me a weird shaped face – It’s bizarre, I know, but I don’t like it. I normally wear my eyeliner like it says on the tin, to line my eyes by applying the product to my top waterline & lashes – with this obviously being a lot easier to do, I also find that it makes my eyes look much more defined & shaped whilst still looking pretty natural.

Today we’ll be looking at two Soap & Glory products that I’ve recently purchased & have found work absolute wonders in transforming my eye area… The eyeliner in question is the relatively new Supercat Fat jumbo carbon black ink eyeliner, topped with the Thick & Fast super volume mascara.
I begin with the Supercat Fat eyeliner before applying mascara as I think this works best in my makeup routine. If you’ve tried the Supercat liner, this has the exact same formula, the only difference is that the application nib is twice as big & almost has a calligraphy type shape to it. I found this really easy to apply, because the nib is bigger than the previous range, it takes one simple swish to the lids, and hey-presto you’re done. If you we’re going to do the cat eye flick, I’d imagine it to be really easy too, especially with the shape of the nib you’d just have to tilt your hand when applying to give you that perfect flick! It’s a really, really, super black eyeliner so I’d say a little goes a long way & the longevity of this product is fab. If you really want to go va va voom, it’d be perfect for a night out as you wouldn’t have to worry about reapplying. I will 100% be repurchasing this product, I think it’s completely brilliant – I’ve been trying to think of some constructive criticism for the product, but I seriously can’t think of anything, so well done Soap & Glory!
I then apply Thick & Fast to my lashes to finish the eye look. This mascara instantly supplies your lashes with some much needed length & volume. The formula is really buildable too, so if you want to apply one coat for everyday wear then that’s perfect, but you can also add an extra layer of two to give you the most voluminous showstopper lashes. Thick & Fast doesn’t clump or look spidery which is often a concern when applying mascara, especially when you’re applying numerous coats. I found this product to last really well, there was a very slight bit of fall out towards the end of the day, but apart from that I’m super impressed with the product and would definitely buy again once this tube has ran out.
The packaging of both these items, screams Soap & Glory, they never seem to disappoint with the way they brand their products, they’re just fabulous! I think it’s one of the most recognisable brands around, so hats off to all at Soap & Glory!
Have you tried these products before? What else can you suggest for creating the perfect bold eye look?
Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Friday, 6 March 2015

Event | What I Received In My London Fashion Weekend Goodie Bag

It's no secret, in fact I've practically been bragging about it on social media recently, but last week I had the amazing opportunity to head down to London Fashion Weekend. This was my first LFWend experience & honestly, the whole experience made my year (so far). Part of the event included being greeted with a fabulously filled goodie bag, lets take a peek inside...

London Fashion Week Show Guide.*
Not only did the 20 page booklet notify a schedule events from industry talks to trend & designer catwalk times but it also had a huge section of shopping opportunities and future trends. Luckily for me the future trends included 'make it monochrome' something I'm more than happy to showcase, but also 'that seventies show'. I'm growing more and more intrigued by this trend, I'm in desperate need of some flares that I could team with a pair of chunky heeled mary-janes. 

Urban Fruit Smashing Strawberry.*
We ate these on the coach back from London & let me tell you, I really can't decide whether I like them or not, they've got such a strange taste to them. The strategy behind Urban Fruit is creating fruity snacks with no preservatives and no  sugar, which is a lovely idea... But honestly I was fully craving that sugary goodness. The chunks of strawberries are baked in the oven & have that dried fruit/raisin type texture, which for me is why I think I wasn't all keen - The texture of these Urban Fruit snacks just wasn't for me.

Lavazza Espresso Coffee Beans.*
I'm a huge coffee fan/snob so I was chuffed to see these at the bottom of my goodie bag. We've been meaning to buy a cafetiere at home, and receiving this little pack of goodness has really given us the kick up the backside to get one. These Lavazza beans are of medium roast and stated as being intense & velvety, which I just love! I can't wait to try these out.

Essie Nail Laquer in shade Roarrrange.*
Another one for my Essie collection... Fortunately I don't own anything as bright as this so it'l make a welcome addition to my collection. I love the name of this too! I always think Essie polishes have the best names! I'd love to be the person who decided on what to call their different colours, that'd be such a cool job! This bright orange colour will be prefect for Spring/Summer and I can't wait to get wearing it.

Maybelline The Colossal Volum' Express Cat Eye Mascara.*
This has come at just the right time for me! Somehow (don't ask me how) but I've lost my trusty Soap & Glory mascara so I'm in need of a new mascara. Although I haven't tried this one, I've tried various Maybelline mascaras before and have never been dissappointed so I'm looking forward to giving this one a go. I'm really intrigued by the curved 'feline' brush, I've got pretty high hopes about this one!

Kleenex Balsam Pocket Size Tissues.*
Because they'll come in useful one day! I'm going to keep these in my handbag for those emergency days!

Have you used any of these products before? Or did you also go to London Fashion Weekend & received these items - What did you think?

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Giveaway | MAC Giveaway & Winning Joie De Jodie's Giveaway

A week and  a half ago I had a lovely little email ping into my inbox notifying me I'd won a blogger giveaway! Me!.. A winner! I tend to enter blogger giveaways on a bit of a whim, never really expecting to win anything, but it actually happened when I entered Joie De Jodie's giveaway last month.
However I've reached one of my own milestones this month in reaching 300 followers on xclaireabella which I'm super duper pleased about. I blog as a hobby on the side of working and knowing I have a regular supply of readers is a really heartwarming & lovely thought.... Keep reading for my own little giveawayFirstly though I'll be discussing my first thoughts on the lovely goodies I was given by Joie De Jodie.

Monki Miracle Purse*
This is what I was most excited about as I've actually been on the look out for a simple black leather look purse. I thought it was a pretty easy request, however finding one I like has proven dificult - Untill I saw this one! It's exactly what I was looking for & I can't wait to start using it.
Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick*
This will be the second red Kate Moss lipstick I own. This is much more letterbox red than the previous one I own so it'll be nice to have something bolder & more colourful to wear. I absolutely love a red lip so this will make a pefect addition to my dressing table.
W7 In The Buff*
I actually very nearly bought myself this palette before Christmas so knowing this little beauty was on it's way to me, made me a very happy bunny indeed. It's pretty well known that 'in the buff' is a dupe for the Naked palettes so it'll be really cool comparing the two! 

Now back onto my giveaway... Since moving to Leeds I'm now a lot closer to one of my favourite brands.. MAC! In fact I walk past the MAC store everyday on my way to work, so  it's safe to say I'm popping in there quite often. Ooops! Anywho... I thought what better way to celebrate reaching 300 followers than offering you lovely readers a MAC lipstick of your choice. I have the usual refflecopter format below including various ways you can enter my giveaway. The giveaway will be available for two weeks only & will finish on the 18th March with the winner being contacted on the 19th to confirm their chosen lipstick colour. Best of luck!

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Event | London Fashion Weekend

Since starting blogging last year my passion for all things fashion & beauty had really come alive and for the majority of last year I've known that one of my main aims for 2015 was to travel down to London & attend London Fashion Weekend.
A few weeks ago I purchased myself a pair of Silver tickets, which entitled me entry into LFWend at Somerset House, industry talks, a luxury tote goodie bag and seats at a designer catwalk show. 

I decided to wear something simple for my first LFWend experience by teaming a basic Primark black tee with my new favourite & super girlie pastel pink high waisted skirt from H&M. I love the look of these two together as I really think the skirt tramsforms an otherwise quite boring top. The black duster thrown over the top is from Boohoo & the wedges and belt are very very very old River Island. In fact I re-found them whilst visiting my mums last week & thought they were just too pretty to throw away! The black bag is also another new/old discovery. I received it as a present years ago, but it's been perfect for LFWend, there's so many different compartments to it, it's amazing! A complete wardrobe staple!

We tottled down to the venue for Day 1 of LFWend, which was set in the very picturesque neo-classical Somerset House. We've been to London quite a few times over the years, but strangely enough have never noticed the building before, I really don't know how, because it's a massive building -We're such bad tourists!
As this years event was sponsered by Vodaphone, Somerset House was lit up with beautiful red lights with the companys' logo parading the exterior walls. This was present throughout the day, but it was only as it got darker that you could really get a feel for how impressive it all looked. As a lover of all things architecture/interior design related, it was seriously stunning. 

The first part of the afternoon consisted of browsing rails upon rails of designer clothing with a glass of Prosecco to hand... It's such a hard life! This took up a good couple of hours as there were countless amounts of brands at the venue, the vast majority of them I hadn't heard of but I really enjoyed them & had a brilliant time discovering new designers. I've been lusting after a 3.1 Philip Lim bag now for a little while so getting to have a nosey at them was probably my favourite bit of the shopping experience. Unfortunately I didn't end up buying one because they're just so darn expensive, but a girl can dream right? 

We were then invited to an industry talk introduced by fashion journalist Antonia O'Brien & hosted by Toni & Guy's Label M ambassador Philipp Haugg. The talk explained the Label M range & incorporated two key hair trends from Toni & Guys' last 10 years at London Fashion WeekThe first more 'out there' hair trend featured on the Giles AW10 catwalk, Philipp explained exactly how this look was created using the Label M hairspray and a shed load of back combing.... Would you believe there's a ponytail under that beehive keeping everything afloat! The second was a much more wearable look, from the Jean-Pierre Braganza SS15 catwalk. Loose waves were created for an almost undone finish, the type that let the clothes do the talking! Both looks were incredible, the first being more showstopper and the second for much more everyday wear. Philipp then finished the talk explaining his love for hair creativity & how he's worked his way up through the Toni & Guy ranks. It was a really inspirational & enthusiastic talk from a gentleman who clearly enjoys his job.

Then comes the show! We had seats at the Amanda Wakeley show. The collection was very all-white-everything based, minus the addition of black barely there heels & an injection of colour in the handbags. It was a beautiful collection of floaty femenine silhouettes. I could see the clothing working equally as well on the high street which is lovely because it gives me some really good ideas for Spring/Summer this year.

I've not experienced London Fashion Weekend before, but I had a brilliant time! I'd definitely try and go again & maybe even head for London Fashion Week next time!

Have you been to both London Fashion Week & Fashion Weekend? I'd love to hear your comparison thoughts?

Lots of love | Claireabella.x

Top - Primark (£8.00)
Skirt - H&M (£24.99)
Duster - Boohoo (£25.00)
Wedges - River Island
Belt - River Island
Necklace - Primark (£4.00)

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