Monday, 11 July 2011

Expensive Nudes?

Not really!

Usually I don't buy anything from Next's womenswear, but after looking through their Autumn catalogue online, I fell in love with their Nude peeptoe shoes, priced at £26.00. 

I was looking for the perfect nude shoes or sandals, but couldn't find any that had a medium sized heel.  These were comfortable as soon as I tried them on and looked gorgeous.  

Nude is the new black and everyone should invest in a pair, as they can go with any outfit.  You can pair them  with a statement dress, for understated glamour or wear them with a bright maxi dress.  The possibilities are endless.

Have you found the perfect nude shoes?
Ocean Treasures


There are soooo many sales on at the moment, that I just had to go to some of my favourite stores.  One of them being Accessorize, where everything was half price from the summer collection.  My husband was stood at the door staring at all the crazy women drooling over jewellery and laughing at me. Here are some of the few things that I just had to get.

All in shades of tropical blues, sea greens and light gold.  

The necklace was £16.00 and now £8.00.  The bracelet was £28.00 and now £14.00 and the earrings were in a set of three, reduced to only £3.00. I bought the clustered ring quite a while back and it just happened to match beautifully.

Have you picked up some great finds recently?

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Pretty Basket

I was reading a  storage post by 'Bubblegarm' and she had a basket for storing her makeup.  I immediately fell in love with the idea and decided I need a pretty basket for my dressing table.

This medium sized lined basket was from Poundstretcher priced at £4.99 and the flowers were from Wilkinson, price £1.00. (Yes, I'm a bargain hunter).

I made a small hole in the centre of the lining, cut some artificial flowers and arranged.   This now stores all of my everyday beauty products.

What do you think? 

How's your storage like?
Beauty Labels

I recently bought some travel size bottles to store some of my natural remedies, as the original bottles were very large and made my dressing table look like a market stall.

I decided to add simple and chic labels to the plain, boring bottles.


*  Pritt Stick
*  Scallop Scissors
*  Blank sticky labels

1)  Type your names on microsoft word, making sure that they will fit your bottles or containers.  Print.

2)  Stick the words onto your labels and cut out the words in your desired shape, (draw an outline if you're not confident- I did).

3)  Voila!  You have now created your very own customised beauty labels.

*  Tip- Stick labels on home made lip balms, scrubs, cleansers and decorate with pictures.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Sanctuary Spa Skincare

Skin Type - Combination

During my lunch break, I popped into Boots the Chemist and ended up buying a selection of Sanctuary Spa products (see below).

Sanctuary Spa have now introduced a skincare range adding to their excellent bodycare.  The products I chose were for all skin types, as there was nothing specific for combination skin, so I opted for a cleanser + moisturiser from the Brightening Facial range and face polish + facial oil from the Youth Boosting Facial selection.  

I have used these products for a period of 4 weeks and here are my personal opinions:

Hot Cloth Cleanser + Muslin Cloth - This has quite a strong garden like scent and is a very creamy consistency.  It does not remove all traces of makeup, so I had to use my Nivea facial wash before applying this. However my skin is much clearer and looks radiant.

Warming Microdermabrasion - Tiny grainy particles make up this product and I have used this 2 to 3 times a week.  My skin always feels and looks smooth after application.

Facial Illuminating Moisturiser - After having a facial I use this and it makes my skin very fresh.  But using it everyday under my makeup, made the skin around my nose dry and flake off (I know, disgusting, but I have to be honest).   I had to go back to my trusted Nivea for most days.

Facial Oil - This is good as a night moisturiser, as during the day under my makeup it made my skin really oily.

The Sanctuary Spa products are fairly expensive and don't live up to their bodycare range.  They should introduce a specific range for each skin type as I believe all-skin-type products do not cater for the masses.  

Overall I will be using the products untill they finish and then try a different range.  Sigh... the pursuit for perfect skin is never ending.

What's your skin type and which products do you swear buy?

Monday, 4 July 2011

Funky Camera Case

I wanted a new case for my beloved Samsung camera.

Looking through Amazon I found this brightly coloured hard case for only £5.97 and it was free super saver delivery.  Now that's a bargain. 

The case comes in a array of colours and designs.  It has an internal compartment to store your battery or memory card and has a removable adjustable strap.  The case fits my camera nicely, but it cannot store your charger or USB cable.

If you're looking for some i candy accessories that can fit in your handbag, then this would be  perfect.

What's your camera case like?

Lamb Mince Curry

Yesterday was hot and sunny in Manchester.  I didn't want to stand in the kitchen boiling over a hot cooker, so I decided to make something that would require minimal stirring and of course effort. 

Delicately spiced minced lamb, along with tender potatoes and fresh peas, was called for.  

Known as Keema- Aloo in Urdu, it is a typical Pakistani dish, which evokes such wonderful memories of my mother.  Stood in the kitchen on a small red chair, I would watch her as she gently filled home made pastry with leftover Keema-Aloo and then seal the edges with a brush of milk, creating perfectly sized samosas each time.  These were then deep fried until they turned  a golden brown colour.  

Once slightly cooled but the filling still piping hot, me and my sisters would then dip each puffed triangle into a medley of mint, coriander chutneys and sip hot chai, in the shade of our cherry tree.


*  500gms of minced lamb
*  2tbsp of olive oil
*  2 small onions finely chopped
*  1/2 of a chopped tomato tin
*  2 cloves of garlic
*  Cube of ginger
*  1tsp of garam masala (whole not ground)
*  2tsp of chilli powder (or according to taste)
*  Salt (according to taste)
*  2 medium sized potatoes (cut in small cubes)
*  Handful of frozen peas (defrosted)
*  Coriander to garnish

1)  Using a pestle and mortar grind together the ginger, garlic and garam masala, until it turns to a powder like form.  This does not need to be too fine.

2)  Except the potatoes and peas, add all the ingredients into a medium sized pan (similar to a hotpot) and add enough water so that it covers everything.

3)  Place the lid on.  Bring it to a boil and cook on a medium heat and stir every 10 mins, until there is slightly less than half of the water remaining.  This should take around 30/35 mins.

4)  Adjust the chilli and salt according to your taste.  Add the potatoes, place the lid back on and cook until they are half done. 

5)  Next add the peas and simmer until the potatoes and peas are thoroughly cooked, stirring as you go along, so that the water evaporates.

6)  Finally turn off the heat and garnish with fresh coriander leaves and enjoy.

*  This can be accompanied with boiled white rice, pasta, or fresh naan smothered with garlic butter.