Get Your Skates On and Get Fit!

My girls love to go to the local parks and play.  For them to take their bikes, roller skates or scooters is the icing on the cake.  It’s nice to spend time together but also great that we get to go out in the open air and get some exercise and also allow them to develop an appreciation of the natural world around them.  Many children don’t get anywhere near as much exercise as they should and this is resulting in child obesity figures gradually rising.  As I mentioned in my 5 Habits You Should Introduce into Your Daily Routine post my plan was to up my exercise levels by adding as many power walks as possible to my weekly routine.  I do these without the children but it’s nice to get some exercise with the little ones too and keep their fitness levels up.  I try to take them to the park as often as possible weather permitting  and when we get there the girls love to whizz off and leave me behind.  With them on wheels it isn’t always easy for me to keep up.  I should add that I am not one for running although I can walk pretty fast but I understand there is conflicting evidence as to whether running on hard surfaces causes problems to the body.  Fortunately I had one of those light bulb moments and thought maybe I should invest in some wheels of my own to make our time out a bit more fun.  Don’t get me wrong I love going out in the fresh air with my girls but when I have to constantly be on top of them as I can’t see them when they zoom off into the distance or around corners it is a pain.  Of course I do tell them not to go around corners or too far but they are children and get overly excited and forget and off they whizz yet again.  I want to keep going out with them but be able to keep up and maybe challenge them a bit too to add to the enjoyment.

The solution to my problem is so simple I don’t know why I didn’t think of it sooner.  A scooter or some roller skates / blades would mean I can keep up with the children, race them and work on my fitness too.  The only problem is choosing what to get.  Of course I’m not going to go just anywhere to get them.  I need to use a company that can advise me about their products, that is reasonably priced and has a good trust pilot rating as I plan to get whatever I decided on online rather than going to a store as it is more convenient for me.   I do like Skates.co.uk having had a store near me.  The last time I visited them they were fantastic and staff were extremely helpful and knowledgeable about products which helped.  I am in and out of the house all the time but Skates.co.uk make it super convenient by offering a 1 hour time slot and next day delivery if I want it too.

My choices if I go for roller skates / blades are:

No’s 1 & 2: Rio Roller Quad Skates White / Pink or Red / White.  (£49.95)

These are available in two colours and are great for those that don’t have the best sense of balance.  I like the simple design of the boot and the material used looks like it would be soft and quite comfortable and also provide some ankle support.  My girls saw these whilst I was browsing the site and also picked them out as they liked them too.  I haven’t skated for years so these seem like a good option as they are great for beginners or those getting back into roller skating and a choice that will also get me moving a fair amount.  These are available in both children’s and adults sizes.

No 3: SFR Camden Adjustable Inline Skates in Pink (£54.95)

These also look great.  I love the colour and that they offer a lot of ankle support, even more than the quad skates.  These too use material that would be soft and they have an “ultra comfort liner”.  By the time i had found this my girls had been sent off to do their homework but I am sure they’d have wanted a pair themselves.  They look really trendy and very feminine.  This comes in two colours, the one shown and a grey and purple option.  These too would allow for a good workout and I am sure they would help me raise my heart rate quite fast and get a great workout whilst racing after the children.  These are available in children’s sizes and adults up to size 6 which is perfect as that’s my size!

No’s 4 & 5 JD Bug Original Street Scooter in Matt Purple / Pastel Pink (£54.95)

These of course would make me look like a super trendy parent, gliding along hopefully pretty gracefully after my girls.  The scooters look great and come in a range of colours including those shown as well as black, silver, red, blue and sky blue.  According to the website this scooter is one of the lightest scooters around and it also folds down with one simple movement!  The scooter also has a carry strap so if I do decide to walk for a little then I can simply hang it over my shoulder.  The handle bar is adjustable to suit a range of heights and the new larger grip tape covers more of the footplate for a more secure, firm, footing ensuring I don’t end up falling on my bottom and embarrassing the kids (and myself).  This scooter is very versatile and can be used for children and adults which is handy although don’t tell my girls or they might decide it’s theirs.

At moment I am thinking that the blades might be the best bet for me but haven’t quite decided which to go for.

Which would you choose?

I thought it appropriate considering the topic of my post to speak with Skates.co.uk who have kindly said that I can host a giveaway for a lucky reader to win either one of the quad skates, roller skates or scooters I decided to feature in my post, how kind of them.  The winner can select from numbers 1,3,4 or 5.  There is a possibility of a change of colour if there is an alternative colour for that item in stock.

Entry is super easy just enter via the rafflecopter form.

Instructions if needed can be found here:

http://melaniesfabfinds.co.uk/competitions/how-to-enter-rafflecopter-competitions/

Not all of the entry options are compulsory but the more you do the more entries you will gain.

Look out for the daily entry options for extra entries.

Likes on Facebook are NOT compulsory but are very much appreciated plus it will ensure you don’t miss great posts, freebies and competitions.

Want to receive Melanie’s Fab Finds posts once they are live?  Why not subscribe to be the first to have all my recipes, reviews, competitions etc. delivered straight to your inbox. Don’t worry I won’t spam you.

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Enter here:

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#search/skates/159645dc12818e19

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck.

This is a follow up from another post.  When I spoke with Skates.co.uk they kindly agreed to offer a prize because they are nice like that. This is not sponsored.

Kelp Salad A Natural Weight Loss Food

I do like seaweed and I’m not talking about that crispy impostor that you will get at a Chinese restaurant which is actually made from spring greens.  I’m talking about the real stuff found on seashores with a briny flavour and crunchy texture such as Kelp.  Kelp is actually very good for you and can be found around the coast of Ireland, Japan and the USA.  It is regarded as a superfood due to its nutritional content.  Kelp contains a mix of vitamins and minerals although it should not be eaten in excess.  The fibre in kelp is though to be able to support weight loss by reducing fat digestion and absorption.  The iodine in kelp has been shown to remove free radicals from the blood which would otherwise cause ageing, therefore it is believed to have anti ageing properties.

I love trying different seaweed salads in sushi restaurants and decided that I would attempt to make my own.  Off I headed to my local Chinese cash and carry to get my hands on some seaweed and manged to find some that had been pre cut and dried and just needed hydrating.  It said on the pack to soak it in water for 20 minutes but I ignored this and left in for a few hours rinsing it every so often to remove any sand and dirt that might have attached itself.

Ingredients

1 50g pack of dried shredded kelp

35ml rice wine

3/4tsp caster sugar

3/4tsp salt

15ml soy sauce

1tsp sesame oil

1tsp chilli flakes

Method

Soak the kelp in water for a few hours.  Rinse every so often.  I rinsed mine about 8 times to remove any traces of sand and grit.

The kelp is already shredded which is handy as it saved me the trouble of cutting it finely.

Combine the rice wine, sugar, salt, soy sauce, sesame oil and chilli flakes together and stir so the salt and sugar dissolve.

Strain the kelp and squeeze out excess water then pour the dressing over and mix well.

Place in the fridge for about half an hour to an hour to chill the salad.

Give the salad another good mix and then serve.

Enjoy!

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Glossy Lip Liner (Ruimio)

I know I haven’t written many beauty posts recently and it’s one of the things I plan to feature a bit more this year, well we all love great new products or at least ones that are new to us and that work well.  I have been doing a little shopping and wanted to share the news of some lovely new products that I was fortunate enough to come across.  Today I wanted to feature some lip liner pencils that I recently discovered and thought would be of interest.  These are lip liners are by a brand called Ruimio.  These guys appear to do a whole range of different cosmetics and I am hoping to try a few different products eventually.

The Ingredients

Elaeis guineensis, Elaeis guineensis (palm) oil, hydrogenated coconut, Copernicia cerifera (carnauba wax), bees wax, tocopherol lanolin, petrolatum and zinc stearate.

Not too bad as some products go although anyone with allergies to lanolin should probably avoid these.

The Product

The pack of lip liners features 12 different colours ranging from a gorgeous nude brown which is my favourite to pretty pinks, purple and an orange.

In the box aside from the pencils you will also find a small leaflet which includes the ingredients, written instructions and diagrams on how to use the product.  The range of colours is great as it has enough to suit all and also to allow for a bit of colour mixing and experimentation.  Each lip liner has it’s colour at the end on the pencil so that it can be clearly seen without needing to remove the lid.  There are no colour names or numbers.  The pencils are decorated nicely although I would probably remove some of the writing as the design would look better simplified in my opinion.  The pencils themselves are simple to use.  There is no need to press excessively for the colour to show, a simple soft touch trace around the lips will suffice.  The lip liner can also be used as a lipstick if you fill in the lip with colour.  These pencils can also be used as eyeliners although I have yet to use them in this way.

The Results

The instructions said to hold the tip of the pencil between your fingers to warm it to soften it a little and make it easier to use.  I found even with applying the product directly it was easy to use and it seemed to be softened by direct contact with the lips anyway.

On application the pencil nib did not break apart but stayed firm but soft.  The lip pencil had a silky soft texture.

The lip liners are well pigmented so it doesn’t take long to get a good coverage.

The colour didn’t take long at all to dry which was great so no matter how many double checks I did it didn’t come off on my fingers.  I will admit to have checked it about 5 or 6 times to check and no colour came off!!!!

The colour stays in place and doesn’t seep into any creases around the lips (not that I have many!)

When filling the lips with these colours – using them as a lipstick, they looked great as they were and with a light lip gloss application.

My lips didn’t seem very glossy when the lip liner was applied but then my lips were very dry and I had applied the lip liner to the whole lip so a touch of lip balm / face cream helped add moisture and made my lips look great.

The colour lasted for a fair amount of time and it didn’t really need much reapplication after food and drink although that depends on what you eat.  The instructions say that this is waterproof so I tested this by licking my lips and noticed when I did touch my lips some colour did come off on my fingers but on the whole this did seem to preform quite well.  After about 7 hours with no touch ups the inner lip had lost colour and really was in need of another application but the outer parts of the lips were still as coloured as they were when I had applied the colour.  I would suggest checking after meals and every 3 or so hours just in case although I doubt many touch ups would be required.   Considering the price of these products they do seem to be good value for money.  The price varies from £8.99 to £13.90.

For any of you that fancy getting some of these I found them on both ebay and Amazon, but Amazon has them on special offer.

Have you tried any Ruimio products before?

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Introducing Dubble Trubble Plus a Giveaway

Bath time is a pretty fun time for the little ones at our house.  They love to splash about and get lost in their own little imaginative world.  The girls love to bathe on their own so they can stretch out and pretend to be mermaids where as Mr Squishy loves to fill up jugs and toys with water and pour it back into the bath.  Of course bath time is not just about playing it is also about washing the little ones so they smell great after running around at school or at home and building up a sweat.  No one likes a smelly child now do they.  My little ones love fragrant fruity products to use when washing their body and hair and so were extremely excited to be sent some Dubble Trubble products.  These award winning organic (over 70% organic ingredients) shampoos and body washes come in a range of aromas including Cherry Bomb, Cool Cucumber, Strawberry, Watermelon and Bananaberry.  You will also find a Cool Cucumber Detangling Conditioner Spray.

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The products do NOT contain SLES, SLS or parabens.  SLES and SLS can cause skin irritations and SLES are often contaminated by a carcinogen (1,4 Dioxane – cancer causing) which is a by-product of manufacturing.  The products are NOT tested on animals which means we can buy the products in good conscience.

Dubble Trubble products have been created by celebrity hair colourist and Prince’s Trust Ambassador, Daniel Galvin Jr.  His collection of five pH balanced Hair & Body washes and Detangling Mist all contain organic botanical extracts to ensure that our children’s hair is in safe hands.

These are available in Tesco and most Asda stores, as well as online in Ocado and Daniel Galvin Jr’s stores.

As we all know children love to unbox items no matter what they are it’s the excitement of seeing what’s inside so I thought it might be fun to do an unboxing video.

So now you’ve seen the unboxing what did the children think???

It was hardly surprising that the children had whipped off their clothes in minutes and were excited about getting into the bath after filming.

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The children loved the range of aromas and wanted to try them all so we have been having extra baths to get through each.  Their favourites were the cherry bomb and strawberry although they did like them all.  The combination of the shampoo and the detangling spray made the children’s hair easier and faster to brush through which was good as we can spend ages sometimes.  I liked the range and aromas and would like to see a few more of the aromas of the shampoo and body washes available in the detangling spray range.

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These are lovely products and ones we are sure to use again.  If you would like an opportunity to give them a go for yourself why not enter our competition to win some Dubble Trubble goodies.  One lucky reader will be sent the selection of hair and body washes and also the detangling spray.

Entry is super easy just enter via the rafflecopter form.

Instructions if needed can be found here:

http://melaniesfabfinds.co.uk/competitions/how-to-enter-rafflecopter-competitions/

Not all of the entry options are compulsory but the more you do the more entries you will gain.

Look out for the daily entry options for extra entries.

Likes on Facebook are NOT compulsory but are very much appreciated plus it will ensure you don’t miss great posts, freebies and competitions.

Want to receive Melanie’s Fab Finds posts once they are live?  Why not subscribe to be the first to have all my recipes, reviews, competitions etc. delivered straight to your inbox. Don’t worry I won’t spam you.

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Enter here:

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Good Luck!

Contains pr samples.

Philip Kingsley Re-Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner

I naturally have curly / fizzy hair which generally means that the second there is any moisture in the air, ping!  It starts to frizz up like a puff ball and my perfectly glossy straight beautiful mane begins to resemble a really badly put together birds nest (insert crying emoji here).

The weather seems to enjoy playing havoc with my hair and taunts me with rain, drizzle and humidity especially over the Spring, Autumn and Winter, we may as well throw summer in there too as that isn’t much better.  My hair naturally has a curl to it which would be great if I could manage to style it nicely but it always seems to turn out looking more like I’ve been pulled through a bush backwards when left to its own devices and allowed to dry naturally.  Adding products to help tame the unmanageable curls also termed frizz make it look better briefly but any height there is soon lost due to the length and therefore weight of the hair making it look like a drooping disaster.

For me this is pretty controlled hair.  Would you believe my hair is wilder / frizzier than this:

Hair1

For those that can imagine wilder, shocking I know!!!!!  Quick eat a small square of dark chocolate it’ll make you feel better.  My defence mechanism is to straighten it and I love it straight but it’s nice to have a change once in a while.  I normally wash my hair, let it air dry and then straighten it as my hair is pretty long and takes a while to dry even with drying and styling tools.

Recently I was sent some samples of Philip Kingsley Re-Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner to try.

Hair2

The Shampoo

This is perfect for coarse hair which mine is so I expected this to have some sort of impact on my hair.  The shampoo had a really nice floral aroma which I really loved.  It’s a shame you can’t get a body wash too with the same scent.

What the site says;

“Delivers moisture to transform coarse hair from dry and frizzy, to soft, smooth and shiny. Adds control and weight to aid styling making it perfect for coarse hair that does not hold a style. Reduces breakage caused by snapping – Re-Moisturizing Shampoo contains the same ingredient as Elasticizer, Hydrolyzed Elastin, which increases hairs ability to stretch, meaning less breakage occurs.”

The Conditioner

The partner product to the shampoo I thought it made sense to try them both and get the best possible results.  Again a lovely floral fragrance which is not quite as strong as the shampoo fragrance.

What the site says;

“Deeply penetrates the hair strands to leave coarse, frizzy hair smooth and shiny. Contains Oat Proteins to improve hair texture, making coarser hair types easier to manage. Increases moisture retention so hair is left nourished and glossy throughout the day.”

 The Results

On the first use of the shampoo I will admit I had left my hair to get very greasy to see how well this could cope.  It does suggest a repeat wash where required on the bottle and on doing this the second wash seemed to lather up very well where as it hadn’t really the first time around.

The second use – I didn’t allow my hair to get as greasy but I still seemed to need to use it twice to get a lather going.

The third use, I wash my hair the first time around with a cheap supermarket shampoo and then for the second wash used the Philip Kinglsey shampoo.  This seemed to work just as well which was good to bare in mind.

I used the conditioner each time and left it for a minimum of 5 minutes before rinsing off.

I noticed that with each wash the condition of my hair when left to air dry improved so we had progressed from a crazier version of the picture above to a more manageable:

DSC04558

My hair was just a little wilder than this after three washes.  I also noticed that straightening the hair was far easier and faster which was handy as my schedule is jam packed and I never seem to manage to do everything that I need to so a few extra minutes here and there can mean a lot.  My hair looked much more nourished too and seemed to look smoother, healthier, glossier with no frizz to be seen!  It also felt lovely and soft to the touch and did not leave my hair feeling greasy.

Would I use it again?

I sure would, I love this duo.  They seem to be doing great things to my hair and I must admit I am a little worried about what will happen when it runs out if I don’t get any more in time.  This really is a Fab Find and one that I think you would love too.

Contains pr samples.

 

Turkey Meatballs

Meatballs are one of those dishes that can be made and eaten at home with salad or for those wanting to bulk it up more a side of homemade chips, yum!

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They are super easy to make and you can be flexible with the meat used.  You can try them with turkey, chicken, pork, lamb or beef or by cutting out the meat completely and using other protein rich ingredients such as chick peas, quinoa etc.  See, I told you they are flexible although technically by this stage they are no longer ‘meat’balls.  Meatballs are fabulously simple to make and this can be made even easier by using a few gadgets.  To mix mine I use my Russell Hobbs mixer and to make my bread into breadcrumbs my nutribullet.  This was the first time I had made bread crumbs with my nutribullet and I was curious how long it would take.  The answer seconds – don’t blink, you’ll miss it.  These meatballs are also great as an on the move snack or addition to a picnic.  Just to note for anyone curious that the rests are best when these are shallow fried baking does not compare

My recipe uses lean mince turkey.  For a change I bought ready minced turkey as I wasn’t feeling too great and wanted to speed up the process of making the meal.  Turkey is great for you as it has a low GI (glycaemic index) which means it raises blood sugar levels slowly so good for those with Type 2 diabetes.  Turkey of course is a great source of protein and has less fat than other meats.  It contains various nutrients including zinc, iron, potassium, phosphorus, Vitamin B6 and niacin.  Combining this with ingredients such as brown seeded bread, coriander and onion helps to increase the fibre and nutrient content of the dish.

Ingredients

Make approximately 35 balls depending on sizing.

1 medium white onion

2.5 to 3 tbs chopped coriander

4 slices of brown seeded bread

800g lean turkey mince

392g potato

2 medium eggs

freshly ground sea salt and pepper to taste

Sunflower oil to shallow fry the turkey balls

Method

Place one slice of bread which has been pulled apart into the nutribullet and blitz briefly we don’t want the breadcrumbs too fine.   Repeat with the rest.

Grate the potato with the skin on.

Chop the onion and coriander.

Place the turkey mince into the mixing bowl and using the dough hook attachment give it a quick mix.

Throw in all the other ingredients and mix well.

With a tablespoon scoop out some of the mixture with a tablespoon and squish (a nice technical foodie word) the mixture into balls approximately 3cm in diameter.  I prepare enough to cover my chopping board and then heat up the oil until I get a gently bubbling when a ball is added (see photo below).  I normally test the first ball by cooking it and then tasting it to make sure it has been seasoned enough.  Cook the balls in batches so that they are easy to turn half way through.  If you cook to many at the same time they can get broken easily.

Turkey1

Allow the balls to cook for a few minutes on each side.  Remove them from the oil and place on a plate covered with kitchen towel.  Leave them to drain off whilst you do the next batch.  I normally allow the excess oil to drain off, add the cooked ball to a plate / bowl and change the paper to help remove as much oil as possible from them.  I am always careful to use just a little salt when making these as the children eat them too.  Should you require a little more then just sprinkle it over after.

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Once all the balls have been shaped, cooked and had any excess oil removed serve whilst still hot.

Enjoy!

New! Baylis and Harding Limited Edition Pink Prosecco and Cassis Range

As regular readers are aware I do like Bayliss & Harding products.  They are always beautifully presented and the product range is always varied and reasonably priced.  Imagine my excitement when I discovered they have a new limited edition signature collection with the most amazing sounding fragrance; Pink Prosecco and Cassis.  Not only does this fragrance sound absolutely exquisite, the packaging is simply fabulous too!!!  With rose gold metallic detail combined with a pretty baby pink these are bound to be a coveted gift.  There are some lovely items in this range including;

Pink Prosecco Hand Wash & Lotion Gift Set

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This set contains a 300ml Cleansing Hand Wash and 300ml Moisturising Hand Lotion which will not only leave your hands feeling soft and nourished they will also smell great too.  I scoured the internet to find the best place to get this which interestingly turned out to be Argos where it is being sold for just £5.99 which is reasonable for the size of the bottles, beautiful presentation and lovely scent.

Pink Prosecco 1 Wick Cloche

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What a beautifully designed candle.  This looks great and the picture really doesn’t do it justice.  The candle comes in the limited edition fragrance Pink Prosecco & Cassis and I can only imagine is a treat for the olfactory system.  Again we have the rose gold tones will look pretty against the light pink of the candle and the glass cloche will help preserve the fragrance when not in use.  The candle has a burning time of up to 30 hours.  This is a well thought out gift idea as the glass cloche can be reused with other candles.  Again Argos seemed to be the main seller for this candle and you will find it priced at £14.99.

Pink Prosecco 1 Wick Candle

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When it comes to candles you have a choice.  This candle is also as great and is nicely packaged.  It has the same gorgeous limited edition fragrance Pink Prosecco & Cassis.  The box is beautifully designed with the same baby pink and metallic rose gold.  The candle has a burning time of up to 30 hours and comes in a simple yet pretty glass holder.  This costs £8.99 and makes a lovely gift.  Yes you guessed it, I found this at Argos too.

Pink Prosecco 5 Piece Gift Set

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Isn’t this pretty!  This gift set has a selection of 5 products so you can try a few different items which is nice.  Again with the limited edition fragrance Pink Prosecco & Cassis this set is perfect for a pamper evening in.  The set contains a 300ml Shower Creme, 300ml Hand & Body Lotion, 150g Soap, 130ml Body Wash & an EVA Body Polisher.  This makes a great gift for someone you would love to experience a touch of indulgence.  What a great idea for Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day or even a birthday.  Available from Argos for the bargain price of £9.99 (you get a third off at the moment) I would grab one of these soon as they are bound to sell out fast.

Pink Prosecco Ultimate Bathing Treats

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I love the presentation of this stunning gift set.  The box is large and sturdy and I love that you can reuse it as it makes the perfect keepsake where you can keep cosmetics, nail varnishes, hair accessories and much more.  I managed to get my hands on one of these gorgeously scented sets.  The fragrance is light and not at all overpowering.  In the set you will find a 300ml Shower Creme, 300ml Body Lotion, 130ml Body Wash, 100ml Body Butter & Bath Soak Crystals.  This has to be my favourite Baylis and Harding product to date!

You will find this gift set for £14.99 at Argos.

Take a look at my video review here:

Don’t worry I haven’t forgotten you guys.  One lucky reader will a Win a Pink Prosecco Ultimate Bathing Treats Gift Set as featured in the video.

Entry is super easy just enter via the rafflecopter form.

Instructions if needed can be found here:

http://melaniesfabfinds.co.uk/competitions/how-to-enter-rafflecopter-competitions/

Not all of the entry options are compulsory but the more you do the more entries you will gain.

Look out for the daily entry options for extra entries.

Likes on Facebook are NOT compulsory but are very much appreciated plus it will ensure you don’t miss great posts, freebies and competitions.

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Enter here:

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Good Luck!

Why the Fuss About Charlotte Tilbury Creams?

With the growing popularity of Charlotte Tilbury products I noticed over the course of last year everywhere I turned I would see them mentioned whether in an advert or a promotion.  There were staff in store beauty departments in London’s West End spraying copious amounts of the “New” fragrance onto passers by.  The promoters really did go to town making sure the products where almost everywhere.

I wanted to know what all the fuss was about.

Are they Really that Good?

Having looked around the internet at various reviews it seems that people are pretty impressed by the products.  I had a small free sachet sample of the day, night and eye cream sent through the post and here are my initial reactions to the products.

Magic Cream

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Although the sample size wasn’t very large I did get a good idea of the absorbency level and also the texture of the products and how they felt on the skin.  The Magic cream absorbed well and after application my face was left feeling silky soft without any dry patches.  The moisturiser is not too rich and did not leave a coating on the surface of the face or the hands.  It is a great base for make up and holds foundation, concealer and powder well on the skin.  The aroma was pleasant and not at all overpowering.

The cream itself contains a range of ingredients including plant based and is paraben free.  It claims to increase collagen production and also contains SPF15 and a UVA filter to help fight the ageing effects of sun (did you know chocolate can help prevent against some forms of sun damage?).

Magic Night Cream

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The texture of the night cream was far richer and heavier than either of the other two sample creams that I tried.  It was similar to a vaseline like consistency and it left my hands and face feeling greasy to the touch.  It took a little while for this to be absorbed into the skin.  The cream had left the skin on my face and hands feeling silky soft in the morning and that thickness of cream consistency for me wasn’t an issue although I do know that some people don’t like the feel of this sort of cream texture on their skin.  The cream ingredients are well thought out as in the other products featured here and really are a good recipe for great looking skin.

Magic Eye Rescue

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This too absorbed well into the skin well and leaves the skin feeling soft and moisturised.  The formula is slightly thicker and heavier than the Magic Cream but not as thick as the Magic Night Cream.  I thought the thickness of the cream was good as the skin around the eye area tends to need that extra little help.  This takes a little longer to soak than the day cream in due to the consistency but soaks into the skin all the same and makes a great basis for foundation and concealer if you are trying to hide dark circles.

This comprises of a range of natural ingredients and is said to be an “anti-ageing rescue remedy that works to slow down the ticking time bomb of ageing” on the Charlotte Tilbury website.  Studies have shown an improvement within 8 weeks of trials but having used this for just a few days I unfortunately cannot confirm this although with my skin being as receptive to these sorts of products as it is I am sure it would show an improvement sooner than that length of time.

The products seemed pretty good from initial assessment and my skin did not react to any of them.  I did have a healthy glow to my skin although that could also have been due to the fact I had been exercising and drinking lots of water.

If you want to buy all three you are looking at an investment of £215.  Don’t forget anything that will actually help give you a younger looking healthy skin is an investment for your future appearance and starting early will be something you are thankful for as the signs of ageing slowly appear or begin to wave manically at everyone as they progress.  The set can be found with a saving of £15 from the individual product size on the Charlotte Tilbury site which is good to know.  I appreciate for some this is still a bit steep so if you really want to try something from the range I would suggest going for the Magic Cream (day) at £70 and see how you go.  Even if you are not using all three products if the products do what they claim to then there should still be a marked improvement with continued use for two to three months.

Have you tried the Charlotte Tilbury creams before?

This is NOT a sponsored post.

 

You Have Got to See these Men Experiencing Labour Pain!

I was having a chat with a male facebook friend recently and somehow the subject of men experiencing the pain of labour came up.  I have seen numerous videos of men being attached to devices so that they can get a glimpse of what women go through.  Anyone that has given birth will know how excruciating the pain can be and how terrifying it is too.  Add in a few birth horror stories that we are bound to hear whilst we are pregnant and this intensifies the fear which of course men will never get to experience in the same way.  My first child was born in the Chase Farm Hospital labour ward which thankfully has since been closed down.  I must say that my first experience of having a baby was awful and I was literally lucky to get out of the hospital alive and that’s not an exaggeration.

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With my first child I had the pleasure of the staff stopping the epidural part way through so where I couldn’t feel pain it hit me like a train full on, there wasn’t much easing in that’s for sure.  The experience was made even more fabulously frightening when we had a passer by pop in and notice after I had given birth that I had been sown up incorrectly resulting in my bleeding not stopping.  She corrected the mistake thankfully and if that lady had not been passing by at the time she had then I may not have been here today.  Am I exaggerating the story, I wish I was.  They had done exactly the same to someone else around the same time but not rectified the mistake and this resulted in her death.  An awful story I know but that is why I am pleased they closed the hospital as they didn’t have enough funding to make improvements and it was getting worse by the day.  Now we all know we need more hospitals and trained staff but that isn’t the focus of this post.  This post is to show you what happens when men are connected up to machines to help give them a small insight into labour pain.

I bet many of my female readers have a male that they would love to attach to one of these machines.  The guys in these videos are great sports.  Why not watch them and have a little giggle at their expense and share this with men that think labour is a walk in the park and women’s pain thresholds aren’t high!

This first video is great as they explain quite a bit about what happens in labour and the guys really haven’t a clue what they have gotten themselves into.  The guys get the full treatment with electrodes on their front and back so they can get as close to experiencing what women do as possible.

You have got to watch these.

I dare you NOT to giggle or cringe!

As you can see these guys have a whole new admiration for their mums and what they went through giving birth and they haven’t experienced a full labour.

Want more?

It’s like a horror movie, you don’t want to see but then you peer through your fingers or from behind your pillow to watch.  Here’s another.  This one shows two men experiencing the pain with their wives in the room with them.

They were asked: “Better than you thought it was?”  Their answer: “A lot worse!”

Good one guys for having a go.

Last but not least a doctor experiencing the fun agony of labour who want to see who has the higher pain threshold, men or women.

“At the beginning of this thing I really cared whether men had a higher threshold then women, right now I doesn’t matter!” – contractions at three minutes apart.

“This experiment is getting almost too much to bare!”- contractions lasting sixty seconds and at two mins apart.

His final words “Men of the world you have no idea.  Leave it to the women.   Forget the whole pain threshold debate, we have nothing, women win, men don’t. THE END!”

Well there you have it, the men have spoken.  So if you know anyone that thinks that women exaggerate the pain of labour then send them this way as this post will change their mind.  Failing that, plug them into one of these machines, video it and post to YouTube so we can all have a giggle at their expense!

Know anyone you’d like to attached to one of these machines?

5 Habits You SHOULD Introduce into Your Daily Routine

With the New Year here many of us are making resolutions and with any luck we will manage to stick to them for few weeks at least.  Yes, it’s the same story I’m going to give up this and change that and stop doing this and do that more, blah blah blah blah blah.  The fact is that most of us won’t manage to get very far with our resolutions unless we have made proper lifestyle changes rather than just deciding we will do the proposed task(s).  By mid February or by the latest early March the gyms which are getting pretty full at the moment will be much quieter, there will be an increase in the sale of alcohol and cigarettes, sweet and fatty foods.  It’s a trap many of us fall into year upon year.  We need to make actual lifestyle changes that we incorporate into our day to day lives in order to see a more long lasting and in hopefully many cases a permanent change.  Once we have made a habit that has been permanently incorporated into our lives then will we see a marked improvement in our well being.

Here are my Top 5 Habits that you Should Incorporate into your Daily Routine.

Yes, we hear it everywhere increase your water intake, you need to drink this much each day and then that’s it.  You are left to fend for yourself.  I am here to help you is establish a routine.  Once you get into a routine of drinking water you will notice that you increase your intake without much hassle.  You will automatically start to reach for the water at certain times of the day and this will help you in numerous ways.  Start with drinking 1-2 glasses in the morning when you get up, the same an hour before lunch and again two hours before bed.  The spacing is for obvious reasons but those unsure of why I have set those particular timings here is a quick simple explanation.

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First thing in the morning – over night whilst you sleep your body loses water through breathing and also via evaporation from the skin and if it is hot you lose even more through sweat.  By drinking water first thing you replace this.  My advice keep a bottle (500ml minimum) next to your bed so you can easily replace water loss without forgetting and missing the time slot.  The water also helps kick start your organs into in a sense waking them up so use that to your favour.

An hour before lunch – the reason for the gap here is firstly you don’t want to drink water to close to having had the first glass or two.  The idea isn’t to over load the body and over work the kidneys.  Also importantly if you drink a bottle of water before eating you can help the body feel fuller for longer and it can help reduce snacking just before lunch.  You need water to carry out the process of digestion, you can also drink more water as you eat as otherwise the processes carried out digesting what you have eaten can dehydrate.  Some people say that drinking water with a meal will affect gastric acid by diluting it so that the body doesn’t break down foods sufficiently.  This would only be relevant if you drink too much water a glass of two with your meal shouldn’t affect your stomach acids too much.

Drinking water an hour and a half to two hours before bed; allows for you to further increase your water intake and also as it’s not too close to bed you will have plenty of time to process this and eliminate excess fluids (urinate) before bed.  It takes from a few minute to about two hours to process the water.

By doing this alone you help to flush out toxins, improve the functioning of various body organs and find that you actually feel better for it, your skin will look brighter and more plump, you might even lose a little weight and you will feel more alert too.  With all that just from making drinking water part of your daily routine it’s really a no brainer.

It’s not always easy to increase the amount of exercise that you do but getting into a routine of moving that bit more can make a difference.

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Power walks at lunch time are a great way to do this.  Adding in a power walk into your daily routine even if it’s just for 20-25 minutes will really make a difference to your health.  It will help boost circulation, improve stamina, improve brain function and more.  Coupled with an increase in water intake it will really help to detoxify the body more efficiently.  Why not get a lunch time walking club together with like minded colleagues as this is a wonderful way to keep you motivated.  Add in some fitbits or something similar and you can get a bit of healthy competition going too.  Can’t fit it in during lunch, no problem a quick walk before or after work will do just as well, just get out there and pound that pavement!

I work on my own (I know it’s a lit lonely but that’s the nature of my work) and will walk on my own or with other mums.  I found a setting on the fitbit where you can do daily challenges and you can compete against friends wherever they are.  It does motivate me to get off my bottom and get walking and if I can’t go out I might go for a quick jog in front of the tv, the kids think it’s funny and join in too.

Want to do your exercise in the privacy of your own home?  Sure, why not it’s not always something we want to do with others if you lack the confidence to do so, just don’t make excuses not too, go for it.  Get your hands on a fitness dvd tailored to your level or even just pop some music on and have a  little dance, it’s fun and helps get you moving.  You can even find free fitness tutorial on YouTube.  Don’t forget to stretch and also if you suffer from any health problems that might be affected by exercise consult your doctor first.

Cut the Cr*p.  Eat Good Quality dark Chocolate

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Yes, I am saying you can eat chocolate isn’t it fabulous!  Why on earth cut out the foods you love when you really don’t have to.  Chocolate can be good for you but you need to go for quality which in effect will reduce the quantity you will consume as it tastes so much better and seems to satisfy the craving much faster than the cheaper alternatives which are full of sugar, increas sugar cravings and addiction and contain vegetable oil instead of cocoa butter.  Chocolate can be great for you, it’s full of nutrients including, iron, magnesium, manganese, copper,  zinc, selenium and also fibre.  Chocolate contains antioxidants for a start which have anti ageing properties and can fight illness.  In some studies carried it has been indicated that chocolate may help lower LDL – low density lipoproteins (bad cholesterol), raise HDL (good cholesterol) and prevent memory decline (and there I go reaching for some dark chocolate).  Finnish studied have show chocolate consumption can help reduce the risk of stroke by 17%.  It can also help prevent against some forms of sun damage due to its flavanoid content although I would still recommend wearing that high factor daily as for reasons I will explain a little later.

The Neuroscientist Will Clower believes that chocolate can help us eat less and lose weight.  Apparently if you place a square of good quality chocolate (dark chocolate) on your tongue and allow it to melt twenty minutes prior to eating and also again 5 minutes after eating to help reduce snacking.  How does this work?  Dark chocolate is more bitter than milk and white chocolate.  This bitterness is thought to have a knock on effect by slowing down the rate of stomach emptying by 30% for up to forty five minutes after a meal.  This helps regulate sugar absorption into the blood preventing too much insulin being produced and also prevents the blood sugar levels dropping dramatically up to an hour and a half after the meal.  The stable sugar level means you won’t crave a sweet snack.

So that’s a square before and after meals so don’t get too carried away and also take note it is suggested that you let the chocolate slowly melt on the tongue rather than chewing quickly and gulping down loads more which would of course defeat the purpose.  I think it’s more enjoyable to let it melt on the tongue slowly as you get to enjoy the flavour if only we had some chocolate left in he house that hubby and the mini chocolate monsters hadn’t eaten.

For those that say they don’t like dark chocolate if you really want to you can.  You can train yourself to eat dark chocolate by changing the chocolate you eat to one that is slightly darker than your normal chocolate, eat a little each day for one to two weeks depending on how sweet a tooth you have.  By that stage your taste should have adapted and you should be ready to go darker if you are not on a minimum of 70% cocoa solids.

Wear a Sunfactor Daily – That means in the Winter too.

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In the Summer I wear a factor 50 it’s easy to do with the sunnier and warmer days as a reminder.  It’s not so easy to remember at the start of the winter but I sure do try my hardest.  I have made a point of keeping my suncream somewhere that will remind me to use it on a daily basis.  Once the routine has been set up there is no stopping me.  Why should you follow suit?  Were you aware the suns harmful rays can still cause skin damage anytime of the year whether it’s Summer or Winter.  Although UVB radiation isn’t as strong in the winter UVA is still there causing permanent damage to our skin and causing us to age faster.  Not wearing a sunfactor can result in freckles age spots, fine wrinkles appearing.  It can also break down your skins collagen and interfer with the formation of new collagen.  It also affects elastin in the skin resulting in the skin appearing loose and an increase in wrinkles.  Not sounding to good now is it.  I’m sure many of you are now reaching for the sunfactor or thinking of getting some in.  Don’t forget it’s not just the face that needs it.  Your hands if you don’t wear loves are also exposed to the suns rays so they will need it too.  I can hear some of you saying, “but it’s cloudy, we don’t need sun protection!”.  Unfortunately this isn’t the case.  Even during days when it is cloudy at least 80% of UV radiation can still get through so make it a daily routine and you will reap the benefits well into old age.  We know it’s good to be prepared well this is one of those times it really counts.

Eat Whole Foods as Often as Possible

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Firstly why should you eat whole foods?

Whole foods provide a range of nutrients that are beneficial to our well being.  When we move away from whole foods a perfect example being juices an imbalance occurs.  In most juices fruit will be used to make this more palatable.  That’s not a good thing as the fibre which many of us don’t get enough of is removed and the sugar content becomes excessive.  High sugar levels result in a peak before they drop drastically resulting in very strong sugar cravings and the desire to snack.  We want to avoid this don’t we!

It’s said over and over that we need to eat whole foods and that we need a minimum of 5 pieces of fruit & vegetables a day.  As we get older and our taste adapts making this far easier.  The best way to increase your whole food intake is making this a regular feature for each meal.  It’s shocking how some do not include any vegetables or fruits in some of their meals.  My suggestion would be to make sure you have a minimum of two to three vegetables per meal and if you must snack in between (don’t worry it’s not a problem in fact it can be a good thing) make sure you have some vegetable sticks or fruit.  Personally I would remove juices from the diet and give preference to smoothies drunk in moderation. The addition of these will help improve your digestion and transit of waste from the body (yes that second part refers to to pooping), reduce the risk of sugar highs and lows which cause binge eating, help maintain your weight and even assist in weight loss, increase your energy levels and make you feel fabulous.

Now that wasn’t so hard was it!

These 5 simple lifestyle changes can have a dramatic effect on your life making you feel and look fabulous so what are you waiting for get walking with work colleagues after work or go to the school 20 minutes earlier with another mum or two for a brisk walk, don’t forget your whole food snacks and bottle of water and make sure you are wearing that sunfactor.  Remember you can have that little piece of chocolate before and after your meal so dangle that in front of you and pick up the pace and leave the old less healthy you from 2016 in the dust.

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Which of these habits if not all do you plan on taking up this year?