Sunday, 19 May 2019

*Love Lula: Alteya Organics New Rose & Mullein Collection - First Impressions

*productsamples/one affiliate link (apart from Gentle Brightening Cleanser which I bought myself). These products are sent to me as part of the Love Lula Accredited Blogger Program.

These following thoughts are my first impressions. Don't you just love the stylish packaging of the new Alteya Organics Rose & Mullein range!

The Gentle Brightening Cleanser I bought myself in order that I could test out the full range (£15 - 200ml) which comes in a plastic pump bottle and is boxed. The products have a rosy/slightly herbal scent.

The cleanser is a cross between a cream cleanser and a low foaming cleanser and unfortunately found I just couldn't get on with it - I think I prefer one or the other! 

Formulated with illuminating Bulgarian Rose Otto, Mullein flower extract helps to brighten while skin reviving Candeia Bark extract calms, softens and smoothes out fine lines and wrinkles. Soothing Aloe Vera is a natural exfoliant and Hyaluronic Acid replenishes.

To use: massage onto the skin (I couldn't work out if you were meant to use it on wet or dry skin - and although I tried both methods it just wasn't for me) before rinsing.

The Hydrating Flower Toner* (£13 - 120ml) was in the love category! It's a cooling and soothing mist which refreshes and tones the skin.

Formulated with illuminating and toning Bulgarian Rose Otto, Mullein flower extract brightens, Candeia bark extract soothes and blurs fine lines and wrinkles, youth preserving Rose Water and deeply hydrating Hyaluronic Acid. It'll make sure your skin is really clean before nourishment.

To use: spritz onto the skin after cleansing or throughout the day to refresh.

Iridescent Light Serum (30ml - £19)* is white in colour and slightly thicker than I was expecting but it absorbs quickly and is nice to use. 

The serum contains the same ingredients are the rest in the range and is infused with their proprietary iridescent light phyto-complex which fights dull and tired skin encouraging it to glow! 

To use: apply AM/PM before moisturising for brighter, tighter and more luminous skin.

My favourite product from the range is Pure Moisture Face Cream (£18 - 50ml) which is a light and fluffy cream which absorbs instantly onto the skin leaving it feeling nourished and hydrated. It provides a perfect matt base for make up.  Again, it contains the same ingredients to promote younger looking and glowy skin.

To use: apply AM/PM after the serum.

The jury is out as to the range's brightening qualities (I haven't really noticed any difference to my skin in that sense) but the range is lovely to use and very affordable. For me, the star of the range is Pure Moisture Face Cream.

Have you used anything from the Rose & Mullein range?

Saturday, 18 May 2019

*Love Lula Beauty Box: May 2019

*productsample/sent to me as part of the Love Lula Accredited Blogger Program for an honest review What a brilliant Beauty Box this month! Inside are 4 full sizes and one sachet sample. WOW! The box is worth £67!

The Madara RE:GENE Lifting Mask is full size (60ml) and worth £35. It had been on my wishlist so I was delighted to see it nestling inside the box this month. It will lift, plump, smooth and firm the skin. Expect a review soon!

I'm a huge fan of the aromatic Seascape Island Apothecary range and inside is their Refresh Hand Lotion which is in a huge pump bottle (300ml - £16). The lotion is perfect for coming into summer for a lighter hand treat (and it smells glorious - Lavender, Lemongrass & Geranium). I think this one may make it's way onto my desk at work!

From new to me brand (and to Love Lula) there is exotically scented Sandalwood & Ylang Ylang Body Scrub by Ayumi (200ml - £6.99). Again, a review will follow!

Last but no means least is JOIK's Pastel Pink Silky Lip Balm (7g - £6) which will nurture the lips leaving them with a pop of pinky-peach colour. I think this would be perfect for summer and holidays. Also inside is a sachet of Vestige Verdant Peat Mask.

What do you think of the contents this month?

Friday, 17 May 2019

*Live in the Light: Pure Anada Bronzing Body Shimmer Lotion

*productsample Until Sunday at midnight, you it's buy one get one free for *Pure Anada Bronzing Body Shimmer Lotion (£9.50 for 125ml)

It's the perfect product to add shimmer and sparkle to your skin and is the perfect holiday companion as it has a delicious certified organic tropical coconut scent - it would be so good with a suntan!  But it's perfect to use for nights out or just because!

Formulated with skin loving plant oils and butters the skin is left glowing, sparkly and nourished. I'll definitely be packing it for my summer holidays!

To use: apply to your skin wherever you'd like a warm shimmer.

Pick yours up TODAY.

*Giveaway: Ancienne Ambiance Goddess Argan Beauty Oil to Celebrate it's 10th Anniversary!

*gifted for giveaway I've got a really special giveaway for one of my readers. You could win a bottle of the glorious Award Winning Limited Edition Pink Goddess Argan Beauty Oil (100ml - £40). See my review last month HERE. All you need to do is enter via the Rafflecopter below (this is a UK giveaway). Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, 16 May 2019

Blog Tour: They Shoot Corpses, Don't They by CS McLean

Today I'm on the Blog Tour for They Shoot Corpses, Don't They by CS McLean. My post is a content extract.

Pat O’Hare is the only (living) private detective in Farrelton, a crime-ridden city still recovering from the ravages of an undead uprising. Pat is hired to find the missing granddaughter of a rich industrialist. But, what starts out as simple enough job turns into a fight for survival as he finds himself pulled into a deadly mystery where nobody can be trusted. Helped only by a trigger happy ex-cop and a washed up boxer with a pathological fear of trees, Pat has to use every trick in the book just to stay alive. Caught between corrupt police, gun-wielding hitmen and a ruthless crime lord, Pat soon learns that the zombies are not the most dangerous creatures in town.

Why my characters annoy me

Characters are a pain in the ass.

As a writer, you create them. You help them to grow. You nurture their development, turning them gradually into the people that you want them to be.

And then, just as you are ready to send them into the world, they turn into the world’s surliest teenagers, sticking up two fingers at their creator and declaring loudly that you don’t understand, they want to do their own thing.

My own character, Pat O’Hare, is one such creation.  I originally imagined him as a straight arrow, a do-gooding private eye and earnest writer of wrongs.  To quote from Raymond Chandler, he would be ‘a man who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid.’

The trouble is, Pat didn’t agree with me. As the story progressed, certain aspects of his past life began to emerge. Unsavoury dealings and criminal activities.  Pat O’Hare, it seemed, was not as lily white as I had originally imagined.  
He was much darker,
“You really robbed a gas station when you were a kid?’
“Yeah.  Lots.”
“You never told me this before.” with a shady past that I hadn’t expected.  I was shocked.  It had never occurred to me that he wasn’t the same cherub that I’d birthed onto a clean, unsullied, page of A4 paper.

I wanted to sit him down and discuss what he’d been up to.  I felt like I need an intervention. 
“You never asked.”
“Your mother would be ashamed.”
“I don't have a mother.  You killed her in the backstory, remember?”

He’s not the only one.  I’ve had other characters change race, gender, slip from being good guys to evil bastards, without once giving me notice of their intentions.

That’s the trouble with characters.  Sometimes the assholes just slip away and do their own thing. You may think that you are God of your own fictional universe, but sometimes, even God loses control of his creation once in a while.

Pick up the book HERE and follow the author on Twitter HERE.

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Shopping My Stash #105

*productsample I shopped my stash back in March and it's a post I plan to resurrect and share at least twice a month. here are the lovely things I've been reaching for lately..

I'm totally obsessed by RMS Beauty's Wild with Desire Mini Lipstick Set* which featured in my Valentine's Day Treats POST. My absolute favourite from the set is Temptation, a beautiful and very wearable pinky mauve (and it's one I'll buy full size). 

From Butter Bar Soapery I've been loving their soothing Cornflower & Frankincense Bath Soak which came in November's Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box.  It really is a relaxing treat and especially nice to use before bed.

I recently reviewed three fabulous products* from The Urban Smallholders. See my review HERE. My hands are really loving this nourishing Whipped Lavender Hand Balm which deeply cares for the hands and nails.

The luscious Avo Bao Cleansing Balm from bodhi & birch really is a luxe treat. See my review HERE. Hardworking and luxurious it's one of my favourite evening cleansers.

My final item is Enchanted Plant's almost good enough to eat Cardamon & Coconut Cream Soap which is a joy to use. It's creamy, aromatic and has a scrubby exfoliating texture. Trust me, this is the one to try!

Have you used any of these products? What have you been reaching for lately?

Monday, 13 May 2019

Zing Organics Monthly Hamper Club: The Orient Express

It's always an exciting day when my Zing Organics Monthly Hamper arrives! This month the theme is "The Orient Express" and is filled with a sumptuous selection of goodies! 

The box is re-useable or recyclable and so's the packaging materials inside.

This month we are treated to Throat Chakra Balancing Perfume (£25 - 12mls) which is a decadent blend of Jasmine and Neroli. An exotic floral which will whisk you away to the Far East. Use as you would a perfume, on the tips of your hair, to temples, pulse or chakra points or rub a small amount between palms before cupping over the nose to uplift and relax.

Also inside is a luxurious Limited Edition Spa Botanical Candle (these come without lids to make them more eco-friendly) in Sensual - Ylang Ylang, Patchouli & Vanilla. It's limited, and exclusive to Hamper Club members because Vanilla has become so expensive due to the typhoons in Madagascar wiping out so many plantations. Burn time is 20hours. I'm looking forward to lighting it up!

The final item this month is Jasmine Pearls x 24, a green tea with the delicate flavour of jasmine blossoms. How gorgeous!

Are you a Subscriber? (£29.50 a month).

Sunday, 12 May 2019

*Blog Tour - Breakers by Doug Johntone

*gifted e-copy Today I'm on the blog tour for the fab Breakers by Doug Johnstone.

Seventeen-year-old Tyler lives in one of Edinburgh’s most deprived areas. Coerced into robbing rich people’s homes by his bullying older siblings, he’s also trying to care for his little sister and his drug-addict mum.

On a job, his brother Barry stabs a homeowner and leaves her for dead, but that’s just the beginning of their nightmare, because the woman is the wife of Edinburgh’s biggest crime lord, Deke Holt.

With the police and the Holts closing in, and his shattered family in devastating danger, Tyler meets posh girl Flick in another stranger’s house, and he thinks she may just be his salvation … unless he drags her down too.

A pulsatingly tense psychological thriller, Breakers is also a breathtakingly brutal, beautiful and deeply moving story of a good kid in the wrong family, from one of Scotland’s finest crime writers.

My thoughts?

The story is set in Edinburgh and Tyler lives with his addict mum and little sister Bean. They live in a tower block in a deprived part of the city. His nutter half brother and half sister live across the hall with their two vicious dogs. Barry, is always out thieving and insists on taking Tyler on his burgling sprees.

One night, it all goes pear shaped when a homeowner returns in the midst of their break in and things happen in the heat of the moment. Barry tries to laugh it off but Tyler knows what happened was wrong and calls for an ambulance anonymously. Later on they find out exactly "whose" house they tried to burgle and they know things are not going to end well..

Tyler randomly meets posh girl, Flick whom he immediately clicks with and they become friends despite their different backgrounds and lives. The Detective assigned to the case tries to pally up to Tyler saying she'll help him (and Bean) if he helps her...

A fast paced read which I found very easy to read and it was always oh just one more chapter. I love reading books which are set in the city in which I live in and found myself totally immersed in this gritty story. Would highly recommend.

Saturday, 11 May 2019

Sandwick Bay Candles: Subscription Corner: May: Green Tea & Lemongrass

It's always an exciting day when my Sandwick Bay Candle arrives! This month the scent is Green Tea and Lemongrass, an aromatic and refreshing scent which has notes of Green Tea, Lavender, Jasmine and Lemongrass. I'm very excited to light it!

The extra this month is Hoogly Tea Classic Green Tea tea tea pods which appeared in the very first subscription corner box. I'm a huge Green Tea fan so looking forward to brewing up. I'll also be checking out the other teas on offer!

You can sign up to subscription corner HERE.

Friday, 10 May 2019

*Blog Tour: Down to the Sea by Sue Lawrence

*gifted copy I'm delighted to be on the blog tour today for the rather wonderful Down to the Sea by Sue Lawrence.

When Rona and Craig buy a large Victorian house up from Edinburgh's Newhaven district – once teeming with fishing boats – they plan to renovate and set it up as a luxury care home. But something is not quite right: disturbing sounds can be heard when the sea mists swirl; their unpredictable neighbour makes it clear that the house was not always a happy family home. And their ‘characterful' historic pile has a gloomy cellar harbouring relics from days gone by.
Back in the 1890s, superstitious fishwives blame young Jessie for the deaths of their menfolk in a terrible storm, and she's forced into the Newhaven Poorhouse. In those less enlightened times, life was often severe, cruel even, and Jessie is entirely at the mercy of a tyrant matron. But one inmate is not all she seems. Jessie begins to pick at the truth, uncovering the secrets and lies that pervade the poorhouse – and which will have profound and dangerous consequences in the future.

My thoughts?

The story is told in two different time periods and they magically intertwine. We meet Jessie Mack in 1898 heading to the poorhouse at Wardie House in Newhaven. She's been banished by her family due to them believing her birthmark has brought about all the recent bad luck. She's a gentle soul who I really warmed to and is courageous too! I loved the descriptions of life back then and the characters some of which I liked more than others.

In the 1980s Rona and Craig have bought Wardie House with the intention of opening it as a luxury care home. There are some spooky goings on which bring the house to life. They have an annoying American neighbour, Martha whom I didn't take to at all. There's just something about her I didn't like..

I thought the stories were very cleverly intertwined through Rona finding out more about the history of the house and it's residents. Such a good story which I so recommend.

Wednesday, 8 May 2019

*Review & Giveaway: AA Skincare Cucumber & Elderflower Firming Eye Gel

*productsample As you'll know I'm a huge fan of AA Skincare's products. They are effective, nice to use and very affordable. 

I've been trying their new Cucumber & Elderflower Firming Eye Gel (50ml - £6.95) which is a clear cooling gel. It instantly refreshes and revives the delicate eye area. 

It hydrates and firms as well has helping to reduce puffiness and dark circles. Elderflower and Aloe Vera soothe and soften.

To use: apply a small amount around the eye area patting in gently.

This is a lovely product and I think it would be great to use coming into summer.  One of my readers can win their very own eye gel. Just follow the rafflecopter below. Good luck! Thanks to AA Skincare for providing the giveaway prize.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 6 May 2019

Skin Alchemists Apothecary: The Humble Warrior

In my March Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box which was entitled "Awaken" I received a full size of Skin Alchemists Apothecary's The Humble Warrior Complete Cleansing Oil which is worth a whopping £50! (100ml).

It truly takes cleansing to another level and turns my evening cleanse into a luxurious ritual. Formulated with skin loving oils including camelina which is high in plant sterols, healing andiroba seed and hemp seed oil which contains high levels of omega fatty acids. The scent is uplifting and calming and is a blend of lavender, neroli, ylang ylang, cypress and sandalwood. 

To use: shake the bottle and then pour a small amount into your palm, rub hands together and cup over the nose to inhale before massaging onto the skin. Apply a warmed damp cloth to the face and hold for a few minutes before sweeping the cloth over the skin to remove.

I like that it's a multi-use product - use as a hair and scalp treatment, a massage oil, a body oil, for cuticles, after sun and a beard oil.

An absolutely beautiful product which I adore. Pick yours up HERE and sign up to May's Skin Organics Clean Beauty Box which is entitled "GLOW" (remember you can get 10% off your first box with BEAUTYBALM10).

Sunday, 5 May 2019

*Dr Jackson's Samples

*productsamples I've thoroughly been enjoying this sample selection from Dr Jackson's. They are all try me sizes apart from the 10ml Baobab & Rose Oil which retails at £16. The brand is made in the UK, is unisex, organic, cruelty free, Vegan, sustainable science led, free from parabens, sulfates, artificial fragrances and synthetics. Dr Jackson's picked up some awards in the recent Beauty Shortlist Awards.

The teas are absolutely delicious and I'm already a huge fan of herbal teas - I was sent a single use bag of Expedition Tea which invigorates and replenishes. Baobab is rich in antioxidants, Rooibos and Honeybush strengthen the immune system, sharpen the mind and ease tension. Sweet Liquorice soothes. Relax Tea soothes, calms and relaxes. It helps you to escape and calm down. Drink during the day to bring some tranquility to your life or just before bed to for a deep and relaxing sleep. Formulated with Valerian Root which is used as a sleep aid, Passionflower with insomnia and sleep issues, Lemon Balm Leaf soothes anxiety and promotes sleep while Peppermint Leaf calms and refreshes. Pick your tea up HERE.

I've been really enjoying testing out a large range of things. 07 Face Wash clarifies, refines and cleans the skin. It's got a gorgeous citrus scent and is a pleasure to use. Skin is left clean, fresh and nourished. 01 Day Cream SPF30 is super lightweight and absorbs instantly onto the skin. I like the fact that there's SPF added into the formulation too! 

02 Night Cream is rich and buttery and nourishes and softens the skin while you sleep. 06 Body Perfecting Gel is one of my favs! Absorbing quickly, deeply nourishing and leaving the skin with a slight patchouli aroma.  05 Face & Eye Essence which is a delight. I adore a multi use product and this light as air hydrator, which is scented with Damask Rose flower water is a skincare must-have and perfect for summer holidays.

Baobab & Rose Oil is exquisite.  Dr Jackson's say "self care in a bottle" and I'd agree! A beautiful rich and luxurious body oil which deeply nourishes, calms and smells of roses. A 100% natural oil which is scented with Damask roses. It's ideal to use for massage, as a perfume, as a body oil and to inhale in cupped hands around your nose for a feeling of calm. I absolutely adore it.

What are you favourite products from Dr Jackson's?

Saturday, 4 May 2019

de Mamiel: New: Samples

I've always loved any de Mamiel products I've tried especially their exquisite Seasonal Facial Oils and one season I tried them all (SpringSummerAutumn and Winter) (click on the links for reviews).

I recently found out that sample sizes are now available to buy at 3 for £15 plus postage & packaging. See more details HERE. These are designed to "try me" or are handy for a couple of nights away.  If you spend £50 you can select two free of charge with your order. 

Chose from: 

Facial Oil - Current Season's Blend 2ml
Skin Recovery Blend 2ml
Restorative Cleansing Balm 5ml
Exhale Hydrating Nectar 3ml
Intense Nurture Antioxidant Elixir 3ml
Pure Calm Cleansing Dew 4ml
Revitalising Body Serum 4ml
Pregnancy Facial Oil 2ml
Brightening Cleanse & Exfoliate 3g
Salvation Body Oil 4ml

And of course, packaging is simply exquisite! 

It was so lovely to re-acquaint myself with a Seasonal Face Oil, the current blend for Spring is simply a delight. The seasonal oils are formulated to cope with the changing seasons, how your skin feels as well as emotional needs. Spring's blend is beautiful - reviving, detoxifying and stimulating. It'll help to bring winter weary skin back to life.

My second and third picks were Pure Calm Cleansing Dew which is a gentle oil-to-milk cleanser which purifies, cleans and repairs. This luxurious and heavenly scented oil is an absolute delight. It makes cleansing truly into a ritual to be enjoyed. Exhale Daily Hydrating Nectar, you just know this is going to be good with a name like that! It's a light as air moisturiser with a sheet tint which gives the skin a nourishing glow. 

I definitely want to delve back in and re-acquaint myself with more from this glorious brand.  What are your favourites?

See my other de Mamiel reviews:

Have you picked any samples up yet?

Thursday, 2 May 2019

Zing Organics: Chakra Balancing Perfume in Crown

I received this Chakra Balancing Perfume in Crown in my March Subscription box (if buying individually it costs £25 for 12ml).

Subscription monthly Hamper Club Box is so worth it (£29.50) - great value for money and the joy of a lovely box of treats once a month (plus extra offers for members!)

The Crown Chakra Balancing Perfume in Ylang Ylang, Geranium & Patchouli is just gorgeous. With luscious floral and spicy notes it's instantly calming and relaxing. The range will assist with balancing your chakra from Root to Crown. 

To use: apply a drop or two of the aromatic oil to temples, pulse or chakra points or to the tips of your hair prior to yoga or meditation or just because! It's also beautiful to rub a drop between the palms before cupping over your nose and inhaling for a moment of calm and relaxation. They can also be used during Reiki sessions.

See the full range of Chakra Balancing Perfumes HERE. Remember refills can be obtained by visiting the workshop (I need to do this!) or by mail order.

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Farryn Amber Skincare: LUNAR Evening Facial Oil

I received this fantastic Farryn Amber Skincare LUNAR Evening Facial Oil in my 1st Natural Wellness Box in March which was entitled "The Sleep Collection".

My skin's been loving this beautiful oil which calms and relaxes both the skin and mind before bed. The range is handcrafted with love and attention to detail.

LUNAR Evening Facial Oil retails at £26 for a huge 50ml bottle (you really are getting great value for money here!)

The oil is luscious blend of botanical oils which are rich in antioxidants and vitamins and the oil is scented with Bergamot, Lavender and Rose Geranium. Awaken with a balanced, fresh, nourished and healthy complexion.

To use: apply 3-6 drops to cleansed skin in the evening. The facial oil absorbs instantly leaving the skin feeling moisturised, calm and ready for sleep.

I'm a huge fan and it's one of my favourite products so far this year. Pick yours up HERE.

Tuesday, 30 April 2019

*The Urban Smallholders: Lavender Gift Bag

*Gifted I've been testing out some beautiful handcrafted products from Scottish based, The Urban Smallholders. The artisan products are formulated and created by Sue, a beekeeper who handcrafts natural, cruelty free and ethical beeswax beauty products. The packaging is recyclable, re-useable or compostable.

This Lavender Flower Beeswax Soap is what dreams are made of! It smells simply glorious and the care and attention to details is so obvious. A beautiful handcrafted soap made with love. You can pick it up individually or in the Lavender Gift Bag (which comes with the Whipped Lavender Hand Balm and Honeybee Lip Balm).

Lavender balances and cleanses (making it great for soap bars). The scent is subtle but distinctive and the bar is made using Organic ingredients - Shea Butter, Coconut oil, Sweet Almond oil and natural Beeswax (with some lavender buds sprinkled on top). The soap range is handcrafted in small batches with love. 

To use: can be used as a face or body soap. Rub over wet skin to form a creamy lather before rinsing.

This is a really beautiful soap which really brightens up my day!

Whipped Lavender Hand Balm is a delicious blend of Lavender, Beeswax, Cocoa Butter, Almond oil and Coconut oil. The luxurious balm melts instantly on contact with warm skin. It deeply nourishes the hands and nails (and feet, elbows and knees). I must also admit I've also used a small amount for flyaways.

To use: apply sparingly to nourish and hydrate.

A gorgeous nourishing and caring product which I adore.

Honeybee Lip Balm (oh I love the compostable cardboard tube!) The lip balm is formulated with Beeswax, Organic Sweet Almond oil, Organic Coconut oil and Honey and is a delicious and natural treat for the lips. 

To use: apply as often as needed to dry lips.

A must-have product which deeply nourishes the lips.

What are your favourites from the RANGE?

Monday, 29 April 2019

*Guiltless Skin: Illume Brightening Serum & Timeless Daily Moisturiser

*gifted/AD As you'll know I'm a huge fan of Guiltless Skin's beautiful range. See previous reviews HERE and HERE.

I've been testing out their Illume Brightening Serum (£26 - 30ml) and Timeless Daily Moisturiser (£20 - 50ml) and can honestly say both are fantastic! (I've used the photos from the website as my bottles are from the old branding - see bottom photo).

Illume Brightening Serum adds a glowing luminosity to the skin, is lightweight and absorbs instantly. Formulated with Vitamin B3 which is a powerful anti-inflammatory which helps to strengthen the skin's barrier, reduce redness and pores. It helps to protect the skin from urban pollution. Hyaluronic Acid revives and improves elasticity. Organic Lingonberry extract is rich in antioxidants and will help with uneven pigmentation while Organic Pomegranate extract stimulates elasticity and encourages cell turnover.

To use: apply a few drops of this fragrance free serum to cleansed face and neck. Gently pat around the eye area. Follow with moisturiser or oil.

My skin's been loving this skin loving serum. It's looking brighter with fine lines and wrinkles plumped and it has a glowy healthy look.

Timeless Daily Moisturiser is lightweight and instantly mattifies the skin making it perfect to use before applying make up.  Formulated with skin loving Organic Prickly Pear Seed Oil which helps to retain moisture, provide skin protection and stimulate cell production. Kalahari Watermelon Seed Oil balances, softens and smoothes. Vitamin B3 strengthens and helps protect the skin from UV, blue light damage and Urban pollution while Hyaluronic Acid locks in hydration and revives.

To use: smooth one pump onto the face and neck after using Illume or Hydrate Serums. 

I've been impressed with this lightweight and effective moisturiser which is perfect for combination skin types.

What are your favourite products from the Collection?

Sunday, 28 April 2019

April Book Round-Up

Here's what I've been reading in April (books marked with * I've been gifted direct from the publisher or via Netgalley).

*Death at the Plague Museum by Lesley Kelly - I took part in the blog tour for this brilliant read. See my review HERE.

On the Frontline with the Women who Fight Back by Stacey Dooley - we follow Stacey's journey from working in fashion retail to appearing on Blood, Sweat & T-shirts where she lived and worked with Indian factory workers making clothes for the UK High Street.

What follows is an insight into the documentaries she went onto make including sex trafficking in Cambodia, Yazidi women fighting back and domestic violence in Honduras. We meet courageous women who all have their stories to tell. An absolutely fascinating and sometimes horrifying read which I do recommend. 

*Down to the Sea by Sue Lawrence - I'm taking part in the blog tour early next month for this smashing read so catch my review then.

*Bold Lies DI Kelly Porter #5 by Rachel Lynch - this series keeps getting better and better. It's not published until May so I'll share my review next month.

*The Sun does Shine by Anthony Ray Hinton with Lara Love Hardin - This is an absolute triumph of a book. It'll make you cry but also laugh and has hope laced throughout the pages. 

Anthony Ray Hinton was arrested and falsely imprisoned for murder. He was sentenced to death and spent 27 years on death row. We learn how he coped (could anyone really imagine what it would be like?) through the dark days and nights when hope had gone and in his despair Ray turned to god. He also had the support of his mum, who always believed he was innocent along with his best friend, Lester who travelled miles each week to visit him without fail.

Throughout the book there are smiles, sad times, lightness, despair and hope. Eventually Ray hires a lawyer who believes him. Bryan Stevenson helps him become a free man. An amazing read which I highly recommend (you'll need a box of tissues handy).

*Breakers by Doug Johnstone - I'm taking part in the Blog Tour next month so catch my review then.

*The Lives Before Us by Juliet Conlin - It's 1939 and two Jewish women from very different backgrounds meet on board a boat bound for Shanghai.

Esther is travelling with her daughter having left her ageing parents behind in Germany while Kitty, an Austrian is heading to be with the man she loves. When they leave the boat they go their separate ways and things don't turn out quite as expected for them but they are both strong women and forge their way ahead.

I found the story so very richly drawn that I felt I was there with Esther & Kitty suffering with them through the Japanese occupation and their finding each other again. We meet Wing, a servant boy through Kitty and understand what it's like for locals in China as the Japanese move in. A story of friendship, hardship, resilience, loyalty, courage, survival and love. I absolutely adored this un-put-downable read.

*You will be Safe Here by Damian BarrWOW! What an incredible book which is based on a true story.

The stories are set in South Africa over one hundred years from the Boer Wars. We meet Mrs Sarah van der Watt and her young son. The British have been burning Afrikaner farms and Sarah and her son find themselves in a concentration camp where they suffer appallingly. She keeps a diary and hopes her husband will find her there.

Willem is a different sort of lad and is sent to a harsh military camp by his mother and her overbearing husband. He's very close to his grandmother, Rayna and she's horrified when she learns what they've done.

The stories are intertwined so cleverly. A museum visit and history lesson for Willem and his classmates tell of the horrors of life in the concentration camp during the Boer Wars and Willem's time at the New Dawn Camp is mirrored with life then.  In both stories they are told "you will be safe here". I absolutely loved this story and am still thinking about it now.

And from last month...

*The Flatshare by Beth O'Leary - Leon Twomey needs to find a flatmate as he's saving as much cash as possible to help his brother get out of jail after he was wrongly convicted. As he works the nightshift as a pallative care nurse he doesn't need to be in his one bedroom flat during night time hours.

He advertises for a Flatshare with a difference - they'll be sharing his bed (just not at the same time). His girlfriend meets with Tiffy and believes she'll be the perfect match... Tiffy has just been dumped by her lousy ex Justin again and needs somewhere to live. She works in publishing and is low paid. Staying with Leon seems like the ideal solution...

The converse via post-it notes and soon the flat is covered in them. One morning Tiffy oversleeps and meets Leon for the very first time in the bathroom...

An absolutely brilliant story, full of laugh out loud moments, love, sadness and friendship. I just loved it.

*Final Betrayal DI Lottie Parker #6 by Patricia Gibney - I have to say straight away I am a huge fan of Lottie Parker and this series.

Two friends leave a nightclub separately and don't make it home. Eyes turn towards a guy recently released from prison who hates one of the girls who gave evidence against him. He believes she put him behind bars 10 years ago but he's got a strong alibi.

Detective Lottie Parker and the Team are put on the case after two bodies are found. The girls each have something in their hands. Lottie's annoying superior wants the case solved yesterday as one of the girl's is daughter of a local Councillor and this bundles the stress onto her.

Lottie's two daughters appear to be in danger and she's terrified. Loyal and faithful friend and colleague Boyd is hoping things will move forward romantically. Come on Lottie, you know you want to (we all want you to!) A fast paced, twisty and exciting story which I couldn't put down. Highly recommend.

What have you been reading this month?