Monday, 23 March 2015

Want to Do Your Bit for Charity? CoppaFeel Teams up with I Love...

If you need to stock up on shower gel, you can do a lot worse than head to Boots and grab a bottle or two of Perfectly Peachy by pampering brand I Love...

Teaming up with breast cancer awareness charity CoppaFeel! to become the first ever cosmetics company to add breast cancer awareness signs and symptoms labels to its limited edition Peachy Passionfruit Bath & Shower Creme. 

It's part of the charity's new #SHOWERHIJACK campaign, with the shower gels available from today (Monday, March 23).

I Love...Perfectly Peachy Shower Creme: In association with CoppaFeel

Will you be heading down to Boots to pick up your bottle of Perfectly Peachy? Remember, it's for a great cause...

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Looking for a New Spring Scent? Try Oriflame's Volare

If you've never heard of the brand Oriflame, chances are your Mum has. It's a Swedish-based company that was popular some years ago, thanks to its Avon-like ordering system and budget-friendly products.

My Mum waxed lyrical about the brand, so when I found myself doing a spot of copywriting for Oriflame, I was keen to hear more.

Just a few months later and I was attending a fun London-based bloggers' event on behalf of the brand and Faith PR.

While I'm certainly going to show a little bias towards the brand, what I will say is this: the company offers some of the best mid-priced products I've tried - and I ain't just saying that.

One product stood out to me at that London event and I have to be completely transparent and say that - like a lot of bloggers - it was the packaging that piqued my interest. I mean, just look at the bottle...

A stunning rose-shaped design, Volare really stood out amongst some of the other fragrances we'd carefully laid out on the Oriflame stand. And I hoped I'd love the scent contained inside, for the very reason that I'd already assigned it a place on my dressing table. I knew it'd look just lovely - and isn't that one of the main reasons we pick up a product in the first place? Ah, call me shallow...

So, by now you're probably wondering what the scent itself is like.

Who remembers those purple parma violet sweets? This fragrance is basically those, bottled. With a hint of peony and rose. To me, it's stunning - and if you've ever owned Guerlain's Insolence, this is pretty much that - without its hefty price tag.

A stunning spring scent, it's gorgeously floral. But what I will say is it won't be for everyone. While I love it (it's fast become my go-to daily fragrance), others haven't. My Mum remarked that it was much too strong for daytime wear, while others have described it as sickeningly sweet.

Decide for yourself and let me know what you think...

Monday, 16 March 2015

Label M's Brunette Texturising Volume Spray: A Review

As far as my beauty routine goes, it's my hair that seems to suffer the most. While I have, in recent months, laid off the straighteners and curling tongs, I do little else to keep my 'do in tip top condition. As a result, it can look flat and, to be honest, a little bit lifeless.

So I bet no one was more pleased than I was to discover this little gem existed. Meet Label M's Brunette Texturising Volume Spray - an absolute Godsend for anyone looking to inject a bit of that old va-va-voom into their locks.

An official London Fashion Week product, this spray - while a bit on the bulky side - can be chucked into your handbag for an on-the-go hair refresh. And that I've been doing, as this really does work wonders when you want to add a little bit of lift to an otherwise drab-looking 'do.

On first use, I think I probably overdid it - go too crazy and add a bit too much to your hair and it'll immediately feel heavy. Instead, a couple of sprays is all you need; then, simply mess up your hair with your hands (following styling, of course) and you're good to go.

I'd certainly recommend it if your hair's in need of a bit of added volume. Give it a go - and don't forget to check out the Label M website for similar styling products.

Are you a fan of Label M?

Disclaimer: This product was sent to me for review consideration. I have not been paid to write this post, neither am I affiliated with the brand in any way. All opinions are my own and 100% honest, as always.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Schmoozing on a School Night: Beauty Matters' Garforth Launch

It ain't very often I get to escape the monotony of mid-week nights in front of the telly to pop on the old gladrags and head out for a glass of bubbly and a much-needed mingle. So when an invite to the launch of a brand new beauty salon in Garforth (near Leeds) landed in my inbox from Faith PR I didn't hesitate in confirming that I'd definitely be there. With bells on.

I mean who can pass up the opportunity to schmooze on a school night, indulge in complimentary beauty treatments and, more importantly, support a local beauty business?

Beauty Matters isn't new to the cosmetics scene by any means; the brand's founder - Melanie Philbin - has successfully run and managed a branch in nearby Rothwell for some time. And it was testament to a job already well done that so many people turned out to see the new - and very spangly - Garforth premises.
Beauty Matters' Garforth launch: top left, Jess from Forever Miss Vanity gets a free manicure, bottom left: delicious canapes, bottom right: a close up of the treats on offer on the night

From the stylish fittings and fixtures, to the gorgeously-displayed beauty products, and beautifully-presented canapes, no elegant detail had been overlooked on launch night. 

The team, too, couldn't do enough for everyone who passed through Beauty Matters' doors, taking us on tours of the deceivingly-large building, ensuring prosecco glasses were topped up, and offering free beauty treatments. It was evident on arrival the brand had seen a huge investment, with plush interiors, highly knowledgeable staff and more treatments than you probably even know existed.

Having already painted my nails before I arrived (damn!) I decided to forego a complimentary manicure and instead opted to discover more about my skin - and its needs - via a special skin scanning device operated by one of the therapists. 

Surprisingly (and perhaps, worryingly) my ghost white skin showed up with a few patches of sun damage, with tips being dished out on how best to look after various imperfections. In all, an eye-opening experience I probably wouldn't have had the chance to discover otherwise. 

But thanks to a rather generous goodie bag of Environ (a skincare collaboration between Elle MacPherson and Naomi Watts) products, I'll certainly be paying more attention to any dry, damaged skin.

Also on offer at the new salon is 3D-lipo, a non-surgical, non-invasive treatment which promises to help you lose inches, banish cellulite and tighten skin. Certainly worth a try if you're not a huge fan of going to the gym (who is?!) and want a quick fix in preparation for a big occasion.

As someone who loves the chance to discover new skincare and beauty salons, it was lovely to be able to find what looks like a great  not too far from my doorstep. 

If you're in the area and fancy a beauty treat or two, I'm sure you'll have a wonderfully indulgent time at Beauty Matters. Don't forget to check out the brand's website for a full treatment menu and more.

What's your favourite pampering treat? Have you had chance to check out Garforth's Beauty
 Matters yet?

Saturday, 14 March 2015

No Gym Membership, No Worries: Try This...

Having joined my local (wildly overpriced) gym about a year ago, I know only too well that keeping fit can be costly. Yet there's so many benefits to ensuring you achieve your half an hour of exercise a day that reluctantly forking out to use its facilities almost felt like a necessary evil.

But not anymore! I've long been a fan of online exercise tutorials; platforms like YouTube are full of them and they provide a cheap - and easy - alternative to hauling your sorry self down to the gym when it's cold, windy and wet outside. That'll be the Great British weather for you.

After shelling out (to be fair, it was only a fiver) for Jillian Michaels' hugely popular workout DVDs (if you haven't yet discovered the 30-day Shred yet, where have you been?) I later discovered they were pretty much all available online for free. Along with a host of other workout options you won't want to pass up. Basically, with little more than an Internet connection, a pair of trainers and some exercise clobber, you can ditch the gym and instead get a sweat on in the comfort of your own home. Here's to that!

That said, while I won't be cancelling my gym membership just yet (I love me a spot of swimming, and try as I might I haven't yet found a way I can do that at home - ha!) I have found a blimming great alternative to getting fitter.

Meet Adriene Mishler: the woman who'll  - gently, might I add - whip you into fine yoga shape in a mere 30 days. And all for free. That's right ladies (and gents!); put your wallet away; your money's no good here. And by here I mean in your own front room. 

All smiles: Who knew exercise could be this much fun?!
I first discovered #30DaysofYoga via Twitter, after spotting a fellow blogger post about its benefits - and was intrigued enough to find out more. And let me tell you: I'm so glad I did.

In short, it's a month-long programme of free YouTube videos delivered by the almost impossibly-flexible Adriene. Videos range from around 20 minutes to 35 in length - and despite following the progamme pretty much every day for its entirety, for me, there was never a dull moment.

Until now, I'd seen yoga as some wishy-washy, namby-pamby pastime for either: a) those who were perhaps too creaky to do much else, and b) hippies.

Ladies and gents, I hang my head in (let's face it, a bit naive) shame.

All pictures via Adriene's lovely site.

Yoga is hard. Seriously hard. While I consider myself relatively fit since joining the gym, shedding a stone and trying all manner of high intensity workout classes, I have since discovered a huge new-found respect for yogis. Yep, I have picked up the lingo too!

If you're yet to try yoga for yourself, head straight to Adriene's channel. I haven't tried any other yoga programmes, but it's surely got to be the best, most comprehensive schedule for beginners.

What I love about it most of all is it really eases you into yoga moves and yoga in general, with options to give less difficult poses a go if the hard ones aren't working out for you.

After just seven days of following #30DaysofYoga, I was thrilled to not only be able to touch my toes, but touch the floor with ease. It may sound a small feat, but for me (thanks to my ever-tight hamstring muscles) it was nigh on possible before.

30 Days of Yoga: Day 14
Another week later and I could perform poses even Adriene suggested may be difficult for beginners. In short, I was fast become Uri Geller's spoons in human form. 

In terms of workout wear, I've loved slipping on my BAM Organics' climate control leggings. They've proved absolutely ideal for yoga, helping me flex and stretch into all sorts of poses with ease. I initially tried the routine wearing my PJ bottoms (not advisable, my friends) only to find that baggy cloth on legs = a very accident-prone Lauren. These leggings, however, are as comfortable as they are lightweight and help keep your body temperature low to ensure you look less like a lobster following your workout. Result!

BAM Organic's climate control leggings = the bee's knees
If you're looking for something to try ahead of maybe, a big holiday or a pal's wedding, I'd say dive right into #30DaysofYoga. You need nothing but a comfy mat or rug, a computer or laptop and your good self. What's more; Adriene is such a great teacher - encouraging without being annoying, knowledgeable without being pretentious and...bloody witty. Who knew doing the old downward dog could be so hilarious.

Give the programme a shot and let me know how you get on....


Disclaimer: I have not been paid to write about #30DaysofYoga, neither am I affiliated with Adriene and her brand in any way. All opinions are my own and 100% honest, as always. The BAM Organics' leggings, were, however, supplied vi the brand for review consideration - but despite this, I wholeheartedly recommend them.
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