Thursday, 14 July 2011

My Birthday Haul in London...

Hey Lovelies!

So, if you follow me on Twitter, you would have seen at the end of June 2011 I was ranting about me going to London for my birthday for a few days. My birthday is on the 1ST July and we went to London from the 30TH June 2011 until the 2ND July 2011.

The main reason we went to London was to see Take That at Wembley on my actual birthday-the lovely Fiance bought himself, me and my Mom tickets to go see them :-) bless! We also saw a West End show on the Thursday night-Jersey Boys, which is fantastic. Me and Simon (the Fiance) have seen it five times now! Ha....we love it!

On the Thursday when we got there we went to have a look around Camden Market and on the Friday we went shopping in Oxford Street, so I thought I would do a little haul post and share with you the things that I bought myself. As we had things booked we didn't have a LOT of time to shop, but I still found a few nice bits :-). Also, the week before we went to London I bought a few things from a Blog sale which I will also show you.

The first shop I came across and wanted to have a look in was Jane Norman. I heard that it was going into administration and to be fair I was gutted. I am a big fan of the brand and have bought a fair few bits from them over recent years. They had a sale on so I decided to go and have a nosy. The only thing I saw in there that I liked this time was some sunglasses-I needed some nice black ones. I have coloured sunglasses, which don't go with everything and I have some black ones that look a bit tacky now because they had all diamantes on the sides and half of them have fallen off, so I decided to buy some from there. After about 15 mins in a hot, stuffy shop (it was lovely weather and there were loads of people in the store due to the sale-so it was boiling in there) and asking my Mom which ones looked nicer. I decided on this pair:

They are Black Cats Eye Sunglasses and were £9, reduced from £12. They are medium tint, UV400 lenses and absorb 100% of harmful UV rays. I really like them and have been wearing them since I bought them, as the weather has been lovely lately! They are really comfortable and I love the case they came in, which will keep them protected when I am carrying them around in my bag. Overall a great buy! You can buy them here, but as the company is in administration, I am not sure how long they will be available for!

The next place I went into was TopShop. They had a sale on aswell :-). I always find with sales though, that items I like in a certain shop before a sale, are never there when the sale is on or just aren't in the sale at all. I must just leave it too late to get to the shop, because some people I know get really good bargains, but when I go I always leave feeling disappointed, probably 80% of the time lol. Oh well! Anyway the items I bought in TopShop, weren't even in the sale-typical! However, I had my eye on the top I bought for a while and as I had money to spend for my Birthday, I decided to go ahead and treat myself.

I bought this lovely coral orange scallop jersey top (this is what it said on the receipt). It was £15. I wore this for the first time a few nights back when me and Simon went out for a meal. I had it tucked into jeans with a little cardigan (it wasn't that warm, otherwise I would have worn it without the cardigan). It has the scallop edge on the straps, the front, the back and the bottom of the top. I love the shorts in the scallop hem style aswell-I have some cotton scallop hem shorts I bought from H&M (you may have seen these in one of my hauls on YouTube, you can see it here). It is really flowy aswell when not tucked into anything. You can buy it here.

I also bought some Jelly Belly Jelly Beans from TopShop aswell-random I know but they were only £1.50 and looked so nice with all the different yummy flavours, like Watermelon, Top Banana, Green Apple, Very Cherry and Lemon :-). I haven't eaten them yet as they were in the TopShop bag for this haul, but I shall be tucking into them after this post! They had a huge range of sweets and novelty items in the TopShop on Oxford Street. I don't think they sell these kinds of things in all TopShops (definitely not in the one where I live), but they do in London, just so you know :-). Here are some more pictures of me wearing the top I bought:

When we were at Camden Market, I came across this independent market stall at the inside market of Camden Lock that sold handmade soaps and bath bombs. There were loads of yummy looking ones in the shape of cupcakes, slices of cakes etc. I picked up this one:

As you can see it was beautifully wrapped and only cost £3! There was no company name on the packaging and I can't remember what it said above the market stall but if you do go to Camden Lock Market, go inside where there are plenty more stalls and you won't be able to miss it-it stands out cause it's so pretty! :-). This one smells like strawberries and cherries :-) can't wait to use it!

So onto what I bought from the Blog Sale. The sale was on a lovely girl called Charlotte's Blog and you can see her Blog here. The first thing I spotted was this gorgeous satchel bag and it was one of those things that I looked at, then carried on looking at other things in the sale, then I went back to it, then carried on, then went back to it and so on and so forth! I really really liked it so had to buy it lol. It is from Primark-but the Primark where I live must be the worst one because there are never any good things there. You know when you see other peoples Primark hauls and you see some really nice stuff, well when I go into the Primark here, it's always pants! In my opinion, Birmingham and London's Primark are the best ones-although they are always busy! Lol. Anyway, here is the little beauty:

I love this bag and Charlotte was selling it for just £5. I think they were selling it for £7 in Primark, but like I said they never have any of the good things in my Primark. Charlotte said she had only used it about three times, so I decided to go for it! My sister has also been eyeing this up, so no doubt she will be asking to borrow it soon! Lol. Unfortunately, Primark don't have an online store-but if you pop into your Local Primark you might be lucky enough to spot one of these. I know they have the bags in different colours aswell! :-).

The last thing I bought from Charlotte was the Collection 2000 Shimmer & Shade in No 3. Just Peachy. I spotted this in Boots a while ago but didn't really want to pay £4.19. I spotted it on Charlotte's Blog Sale for £1, so definitely wanted to snap it up! Mainly to use as a highlight and I love it. It was practically brand new aswell, you couldn't even tell if it had been used when I received it. I think I've used more of it trying to do swatches for this post ha! It even contains Vitamin E and Silk!

(Left to Right; Base Shade, Large Flower Shade and Small Flower Shade). They are subtle, highlight colours, so aren't really pigmented, but you should just about be able to see them. I haven't used it properly yet, as it has been in a bag waiting for me to do this haul, but I will probably include it in a make-up tutorial or look soon, so keep your eyes peeled! :-). You can buy different shades of the compact here (I can't find the exact one I have on the Boots website, but you might be able to find it if you pop into your local Boots).

The lovely Charlotte, realising it was my birthday put a lovely message in with the package thanking me for my purchases and wishing me a lovely birthday and a great time in London. I thought this was really sweet as she didn't have to do this. Bless her! Also she added some extra goodies in with the package-so sweet of her!

(Special Edition Glossy Tubes by Barry M. Left to Right; Coral/Peach Shade, Red Shade, Pink Shade). Unfortunately these Barry M Special Edition Lip Glosses don't have names on them, but these swatches are in the same order as the pictured glosses above. These were special edition, so I don't think they are for sale any more-but you may be able to find them on websites such as Ebay or MakeupAlley.

(17 Ultimate Volume in Pink Ice-you can buy this here).
(NYC Lip Sliders Tinted Lip Balm in Sugar Kiss). I am not sure where Charlotte got this from, but if you are after one she is available to contact on her Blog or her Twitter.

As you can see Charlotte was really generous with what she sent me and it really made my day opening the package! :-). Thanks again so much Charlotte-one for selling the things I bought and two for the extra goodies you sent me :-).

So that's it! I had a lovely Birthday and can now fully enjoy my purchases :-).

Thanks so much for reading my post-please follow, like and comment :-).

Much Love Gem XxOo

You can find me on YouTube here.
You can find me on Twitter here.

Pictures: All pictures unless otherwise stated are my own. If you wish to use them please credit my name by them-Gemma Tranter.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Lee Stafford Argan Oil Hair Care Range...

                   (Picture courtesy of Lee Stafford Argan Oil Press Release)

In May, I was lucky enough to be sent some hair care products from the new Lee Stafford Argan Oil range. I felt extremely privileged as the products weren't available to buy until June 2011, so I got to try them a month earlier which was exciting! I have been using the products I was sent for approx two months now and I have been really looking forward to doing this Blog post for you all to tell you about these wonderful products.

I would like to start with the prices (which I know most people would leave till last when doing a review), I don't want to shock you with any prices at the end when you have read my review and I want to be able to explain within my review what I feel is the justification for the prices.

The products I was sent along with prices are as follows;

Lee Stafford Argan Oil Nourishing Shampoo 250ml £10.99-you can buy this here.
Lee Stafford Argan Oil Nourishing Conditioner 250ml £10.99-you can buy this here.
Lee Stafford Argan Oil Miracle Heat Defence Spray 200ml £12.99-you can buy this exclusively at Boots (I can't find it on the Boots website, but it should be in-store).
Lee Stafford Argan Oil Deep Nourishing Treatment 200ml £14.99-you can buy this here.

Now, I know you might be thinking that the price is slightly steep for each of the products, I suppose it depends on whether you are used to paying these kinds of prices for hair products. Personally, I am used to sticking with Herbal Essences or Aussie which you can get for about £3/£4. So when I first saw these prices, I did think myself that it was pretty expensive and that if I randomly went into Boots for example and saw these products, I would probably look but carry on past them simply because of the price. Hence why I was so excited about doing this Blog post because now I have used these products, I feel the quality of my hair after using them totally justifies the price and I will definitely be re-purchasing these products in the future when I run out.

So, I bet you are all wondering what is so good about these products. Well, let me get onto that but first let me just tell you that I know from the press release that Lee Stafford was involved every step of the way in creating this gorgeous range and he stated - ‘I tried and tested these products again and again until I was happy that the range did exactly what it says on the bottle, driving my team half mad in the process!’
The main ingredient that is used to create this range is Argan Oil and this is what it says on the back of the bottles/tubs to explain the oil and the inspiration behind it;

‘Argan Oil is a rich, nourishing oil, native to Morocco. It contains many of the ingredients associated with repairing hair and the creation of luxurious healthy hair. The Berber women of Morocco have used Argan Oil as part of their daily beauty regime for hundreds of years and consider it to have many benefits, including preventing moisture loss in their unforgiving desert surroundings. Now these ancient beauty secrets, proven for centuries, are spreading worldwide!’

So let me start explaining the products, starting with the Nourishing Shampoo. The first thing I noticed when using this shampoo is that it doesn't come running out of the bottle. The shampoo is of a thicker consistency to what I am used to with other shampoos, it feels more like a serum. It takes a little more time to rub in because of its thickness but believe me it is worth it and it doesn't weigh down your hair at all! I also noticed that when massaging into my scalp, my hair felt a lot thicker. This impressed me because it doesn't state to do this on the bottle, so it was a surprise, but a very good one because I have really fine hair and struggle to get thickness unless I have it cut short, so I absolutely love this feature of the shampoo.

On the tub it advises you (if you have it) to use the Deep Nourishing Treatment in between shampooing and conditioning, leaving in for five minutes before rinsing out. This is like an intensive treatment and is advised to be used every wash until the condition of your hair improves and then used once a week. I must say, although I feel like my hair has improved and feels much better, I do still use this every wash because it just makes my hair feel so silky, soft and luxurious-like I have had some miracle treatment at the hairdressers. It is really easy to glide through your hair, it feels just like the conditioner and both have a much lighter and thinner consistency to the shampoo. It doesn't leave your hair weighed down either, as some products can do when using special treatments. When I rinse this out, my hair feels so incredibly soft I feel like there is no need for a conditioner, but I do still use it to complete the process and who doesn't want even softer hair?!

The Nourishing Conditioner like I said has a much thinner consistency to the shampoo. Don't get me wrong it doesn't run out all over your hands and the bottom of the shower, but I use this comparison because the shampoo is a thick serum like shampoo, whereas most shampoos and conditioners have the same consistency. The conditioner, like the Deep Nourishing Treatment is easy to glide through the hair and leaves it feeling amazingly soft, silky and luxurious. If this is even possible it leaves the hair feeling even softer after using the Deep Nourishing Treatment, you have to see it to believe it or use it to believe it, but you can take my word for it. It is also lightweight so doesn't weigh the hair down.

When it comes to the Miracle Heat Defence Spray, I must admit I was a bit wary about using this. Simply because I am fussy about what I use on my hair out of the shower, worried that it will make my hair look greasy. So upon using it I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was a lightweight mist, so didn't soak into my hair making it feel heavy and plain nasty! I also noticed it wasn't greasy-which was a major thumbs up for me as some products on the market can make your hair feel greasy even if it does protect from heat. I didn't want to ruin all that good work done by the other Lee Stafford products in the shower, but this just added to the luxuriousness of my hair! It left it feeling exactly as it would feel without any extra product after a shower, whilst still protecting my hair from any heat-which is major for me as I use lots of heat appliances!

Now obviously apart from the way my hair feels after using the products, the first time I used all these products I didn't know whether I would see much difference when it came to blow drying my hair and straightening it. The first major thing I noticed and I say major because normally I hate the way my hair looks after it has just been blow dried, hence why I have to straighten it. When drying my hair, with no effort at all it looked sleek. Now I say sleek because to be honest I could probably get away with not straightening it. I tend to just use clips and my hands to dry my hair quick (because I tend to have most of my showers just before I go to bed), so without any effort of brushes or anything like that my hair looked straight and sleek and not big, bushy, frizzy or out of control! I must say I was impressed about this and extremely happy with the fact that in the future I could totally get away with not using heat on my hair every day with a straightener-bonus! This would be if I had a shower during the day though and blow dried before going out, because if I blow dry at night before bed by the time I wake up my hair is everywhere anyway and I have to straighten it cause I look like I've been dragged through a hedge, but yeah if blow drying during the morning/day to go out, I could deffo get away with it!

All of the products smell divine and this light perfume smell lingers in your hair! Which is just fab considering they have so many benefits already (you can find some really good products that smell disgusting!). Also, considering the main ingredient in all of the products is the Argan Oil, most people would probably think that the products are oily and leave your hair feeling greasy after a while, but I promise and assure you that they don't! Lee Stafford and his creators have obviously incorporated this ingredient into the products well enough for it to not do that. Very clever!

The only thing I did notice is that because the products make my hair so soft and silky, when it came to styling my hair in an up-do it can take a couple of tries because of how soft the hair is. However, this didn't bother me as I don't mind it taking a while longer to style my hair in return for the quality of my hair after using these products.

So as you can see I highly rate these products and as I said before I will definitely be re-purchasing. I will probably have to buy the conditioner and the deep nourishing treatment sooner as I seem to be using these up quicker than the other two products I have. The shampoo lasts longer because it is thicker and I don't feel you need as much (it lathers up a lot when you keep adding water to your hair whilst massaging the shampoo in) and the miracle heat defence spray is lasting ages, so far I have used it every day for approx two months and only a quarter of the bottle has been used. This is using it before blow drying (spritzing all over) and whilst straightening (spritzing each section).

The range also has another product which is the Nourishing Miracle Oil, designed to add protection and shine. I haven’t tried this product myself but would use it either before drying or after drying to rub this through the ends/layer ends of my hair to seal in any split ends I might have and also add shine. I have no doubt whatsoever that this product would be just as good as the rest! This retails at £11.99-you can buy this here.

The range isn't targeted towards a specific hair type, so anyone can use it. However, I would say if you have damaged, dry, frizzy, out of control or in need of some TLC hair, then this is the perfect range for you! Give it a won't be disappointed. Your hair just feels light, swishy, soft, silky and luxurious! So you can see what I mean when I say I am no longer surprised at the price of these products-their quality definitely justifies their price!

Have you tried this range yet?

If you have any questions about any of the items please feel free to ask me :-).

Thanks so much for reading my post-please like and comment :-).

Much Love Gem XxOo

You can find me on YouTube here.

You can find me on Twitter here.

Disclaimer: I would just like to add that even though I have been sent these products to review, I am an honest person and all my thoughts and opinions are my own.

Pictures: All pictures unless otherwise stated are my own. If you wish to use them please credit my name by them-Gemma Tranter.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...