New Year - Love And Light

Saturday, 31 December 2011

As I write I'm sitting with a hot water bottle wedged behind my pained back, sipping a hot chocolate to chase away the tail-end of a cold whilst enjoying the peace and quiet of an afternoon sans son. There's nothing I like better than this scenario (minus the backache). Gloom gathering outside, warm and cosy inside with a dreamy candle flickering on the dressing table.
Heaven scent: Harrods leather, tobacco &
cognac candle creates a cosy, fire-side mood.
Yes, my name is Hannah and I'm addicted to candles especially of the posh variety. They're one of the beauty items I rarely buy budget; who wants to sit in a room choked with cheap sickly fumes? I love my Jo Malone, Aqua Di Parma, Neom, True Grace, Tocca, Diptyque, Cire Trudon (the list goes on), but my absolute favourite is Harrods Leather, Tobacco and Cognac Candle.     
This is undoubtedly a beautiful, luxurious object at first glance but beyond pretty packaging the scent is quite sublime. I wish we had smell-o-blog because although it is billed as a being a blend of masculine notes conjuring 'vintage leather seats, Cuban cigars and aged French Cognac' to my (admittedly untrained) nose, the scent is subtly sweet and creamy with a kiss of curled tobacco smoke and the enveloping aroma of soft, lived-in leather. Seriously yummy. 
The candle I have was originally a press sample but now that it is running low - and with Christmas money burning a hole in my purse - I've decided to restock. A quick flick through Harrods online reveals the price to be nowhere in the £30 ballpark I was expecting - £14 for 180g. Eh? Really. A hand-poured candle (√), produced in France (√), with a gift box (√) and a lid to protect against dust and fluff (√) from Harrods? Crikey. I know that following the excesses of Xmas even thinking about buying a 'present' seems indulgent, but this luxurious treat is worth every penny and the perfect companion for January's dark days and nights. Enjoy.       
Love & light for 2012 x                                                                                                                       

Reviewed: Rockalily Lipstick in Pompadour Pink

Friday, 23 December 2011

I have been itching to write about this lippy for weeks but life - and a torturous amount of coursework - has conspired against me. Now, with my file finally FILED (praise the Lord), I'm as free as a bird to blather. So blather I will. I stumbled across @RockalilyLondon on Twitter. ReeRee, the founder of the lipstick range, kept twirling around my timeline with intriguing tweets so I decided to have a nosey at how Rockalily rolls; which is with a big nod to Rockabilly and a saucy wink to vintage, pin-up style.                                  

Makes the boys wink: Rockalily lipstick in Pompadour Pink

Though I'm a lot less high-maintenance than the days when Katie Puckrick was my beauty idol and Sunday's were spent hauling a banging hangover around the jumble at Portobello Road, I do still have a penchant for arched brows, leopard print and a latent love of lipstick so fierce it owns your face. The latter I just never, ever wear. 

But then, on the Rockalily site, I spied ReeRee's Pompadour Pink lipstick and had an, err, re-think. The name sang to me, the colour - a hot pink with cool undertones of magenta - grabbed me and the gallery of real gals (wearing the actual shades in their own style), made me think y'know what? that might just suit me too. Straight to PayPal.

Intense colour straight from the bullet

So here I am rocking Rockalily. I'd had a whole 4 hours sleep the night before - s'cuse the wan face - but wowza, just check out that lip colour. It's a fresh, punchy pink with cool blue almost lilac undertones that makes your eyes and teeth look that little bit whiter. The texture is creamy, ultra-moisturising (thanks to vitamin E, apricot kernel oil and lanolin), and the colour pay-off superb. Pompadour Pink is billed as a semi-gloss formula so I was expecting it to perhaps go on patchily - not a bit of it. The photo above shows two full swipes + evening out with a lip brush = perfect coverage. Love the fact that the bullet has a squared-off tip which makes application so easy too. I also noticed another benefit; as you get older your natural lip colour fades (sighs), and your lip shape softens but a bright lippy really perks up the peripheries of your pout again. Result.

Although Pompadour Pink would look amazing against a cool skin tone I love the way it jars against warmer complexions - I'm on the anaemic olive side. Below is a close-up that's pretty true to tube and I've also pictured the rather lovely Rockalily packaging, sadly only after BB ripped it to shreds. Little boys just don't appreciate beauty.

Anyhow, I'm so impressed with this lippy - did I mention it wears brilliantly well? - that I will definitely be heading back to Rockalily for a vintage rouge version. When the New Year doldrums set in what better way to face the day then with a spirit-lifting, lovely new lipstick?

Lipstick to make your pout perkier ;)

*Rockalily Lipsticks are £14 plus £2.50 p&p for up to three lipsticks.

BB Reviews: Tangle Teezer Magic Flowerpot

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Look mummy - no hands!

Readers who have visited my blog before may recall that we have tangle-related episodes in our house. Now BB's curls are past the wispy, baby-blonde stage and into tow-headed toddler territory he's prone to 'cotts' (as the MIL would say). We've been easing out knots rather nicely with the fabulous Johnson's baby no more tangles spray - which you can read about more here - but lately BB's become insistent on brushing his own hair. 'I am a BIG little boy, of course.' Obviously.

I use the regular Tangle Teezer on my own hair. It glides through long, coloured locks that would otherwise ball-up like sticky string but it's too cumbersome for BB's wee hand to hold which has, in turn, caused more tantrums. So, when I was asked if he'd like to trial his very own Tangle Teezer Magic Flowerpot (the child-friendly version), the answer was an affirmative - 'yes, please.'

If you've got girls to buy for you'll no doubt have already come across this nifty invention down the aisle marked 'pretty stuff.' As the mother of a boy, I get to shop in the small, dusty corner of childrens-wear dedicated to stripes and dodgy motifs so we are late to this particular vision of cuteness.

The Magic Flowerpot itself is fairly self-explanatory. The brush (with anti-tangle bristles), 
is housed underneath the flowerhead which sits neatly atop its accompanying pot and there's lots of space inside to store all of the lovely grips, bands and ribbons you might need for little girls' hair. We trialled the Tutti Frutti colour-way and BB's comments are as follows, 'it's pink and blue and beautiful.' For me, though, one of the best things about the Magic Flowerpot is that his lordship can have a go at brushing his own barnet which makes one little big boy very happy.

Brush with greatness -
Encourages independence and
de-tangling without tears :)

Left: BB's 'worm' stash

In the absence of girlie grips to stowaway I asked BB what he would like to keep in the pot instead. 'Mmm (taps mouth whilst thinking). Let's put earth and some worms in there mummy. I will kiss and cuddle them.' Sweet boy of mine.    

• The Tangle Teezer Magic Flowerpot is £13.26 and available from Tangle Teezer and stockists nationwide.

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