Monday, 31 December 2012

New Years Eve Reflection

Hey guys!  Not aiming for this to be a long post, but certainly a lifestyle one for you :)

All in all, this has been a pretty good year :)  Lots has happened and so many things I'm proud of, a couple of hiccups a long the way but all in all, 2012 has been a good year for me :)

Good things

  • Got a new job that I really love
  • Started blogging and blog going well
  • Close friends announced they're getting married
  • Some friends went through a tough time, but came out the other side stronger
  • Lost over 3 stone (and counting)
  • Hubby finished another year of his part time Engineering degree

Not so great things

  • Some health issues (headaches lasting 5+ weeks) and more
  • Close friends going through bad times
  • Only seeing my best friend twice...
  • The negative side to blogging (gossip/nastiness amongst bloggers)
  • Cat hurt from cat fights needing vet treatment, and a lot of money spending on her :(
  • Cat then being to scared to leave the house for 6+ months
All in all, the good way outweigh the bad :)

I'm so proud of my blog, I hope that doesn't sound big headed, but when I started blogging, I had no idea where it was going to take me and how well it would do.  If you'd said to me in January that I'd be still blogging, and pretty much every day, and have over 700 lovely followers, I wouldn't have believed you.  I've met some of the loveliest people since I started blogging too, made real friends that I wouldn't have met otherwise and speak to on a daily basis (I wish I could invite you all over to my house for a party, but you all live too far away!).

I really love my job, I look forward to each day at work and what it brings.  It's crazy to think that a technology that wasn't around 20+ years ago is now keeping me in a job (SEO)... the world is a wonderful place, one I hope to see more of and have many more happy and healthy years in :)

As for New Years Resolutions, I don't have any planned other than to continue to get healthy with Slimming World and keep my weight loss going and perhaps to make the effort to actually read and comment on blogs I love more regularly.  I do have a friends wedding in June that I would like to be a certain weight for, so that's one goal I have, but other than that, if 2013 is as good as 2012, I have nothing to worry about :)

I'd love to hear what the highlight of your year has been?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Goodbye 2012 Giveaway

Hey guys, so it's coming to the end of 2012, what a ride it's been (reflection post incoming tomorrow!). It's been a great year and I've made some great friends, one of which as you might know is Laura from A Day in the life of a Scottish Lass - a truly lovely person.

She emailed me last night as she was doing a bit of a cheeky giveaway on a beautiful Dior gift set and asked if I wanted to join in - being skint after Christmas, I couldn't really buy anything to add to it - but what I can do is offer advertising space.  What I'll be offering is 2 ad spaces.  One winner will receive the Big-Pixi3 package for February, and the runner up will win the Medium-Pixi3 package also for February :)  And of course, Laura is offering a stunning Dior Grand Ball giftset which looks amazing!

image taken from Laura's blog

To enter, all you need to do is make sure you're a follower of both my blog and Laura's (entries will be checked and if you're not following both blogs publicly, you're entry will be removed).  The giveaway will also run for 1 month and is open Internationally.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck everyone, have a wonderful New Years eve whatever you do :)

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3


Saturday, 29 December 2012

2012 Favourites on YouTube

Hey guys!  So, I don't know how many of you know, but I actually started out in this beauty community on YouTube, my channel has been going for 13 months, whereas this blog is 11 months old :)  Most months (not all) I do a favourites video highlighting what I've been using most over the previous few weeks.  Each video I put into a favourites playlist, and thought I'd share that with you :)  It should run in reverse order starting with this months favourites, so enjoy and I hope you don't mind a YouTube post :)  Don't forget to subscribe to me on YouTube to make sure you don't miss any of my videos :)  If you want to follow me on YouTube here's where you'll find me

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3


Friday, 28 December 2012


Hey guys!  I hope you've all had a wonderful Christmas and have something nice planned for New Years eve?

I don't know about you and your Christmas traditions, but I always get dressed up on Christmas day, it's something I've done since I was a child and something I enjoy to do to this day.  It's very rare to see me in a skirt, but Christmas day is usually one of those days.  I go all out, tights, nice underwear, best jewellery, nice clothes, hair/makeup all have extra effort put into them (this is after opening my presents in my pyjamas!), it makes me feel special and I think it's nice to make an effort.

Now lets face it, we all wear bra's (unless there's any men reading this!) and finding the right one can be a nightmare.  Pro tip for you - it's always worth getting professionally measured for a bra (this is usually free of charge if you pop into somewhere like M&S / La Senza etc), so many of us wear bras that are too small, sometimes we're misguided thinking that a smaller cup may make our boobs look bigger, or we kid ourselves that we need a smaller size around the ribs, but having the wrong bra size can give you backache, so it's worth trying to get it right :)  Anyway, on a bit of a tangent there!

A ruby panache bra

Embroidery details on the bra
Oooh isn't it pretty?

Personally, I don't tend to shop for underwear seasonally in the way I do for clothes, but why not?  Seems a bit silly to neglect an entire set of clothing just because most people won't see it, you at least know it's there, and that's what I love about nice underwear, even if you're not wearing anything that special on the outside, you can still feel sexy and nice by putting on a nice underwear set, or a special bra etc.  I do tend to wear darker bras in the Autumn/Winter months, and light bras in Spring/Summer, but not varying dramatically.  I tend to favour purple/black for winter and blue shades for Spring.  I'd say I'm pretty daring with the shades and patterns I wear too, I think it's fun to mix things up a bit and wear a fancy bra underneath relatively plan clothes :)  Just thinking about it, I don't think I've ever had underwear given to me as a present either... I think I've always bought my own... heh, whaydda know! Do you ever get bought underwear?  Comment below - would be nice to see if it's just me that doesn't :p

This bra from Panache is part of their Superbra collection, a collection that goes up to KK to help the bustier of ladies, like me :)  This particular bra is the Melody Balconnet bra in Ruby, the perfect on season trend colour, to match with the makeup trend too (ruby/purple lips).  The first thing that struck me about the bra was the material, it's a very soft micro fibre called Polyamide - its really soft and has a slight rubberised texture to it.

The top of the cups are embroidered (as you can see in the picture) and in the centre there is a little rose made from a satin-style material, super pretty :)  As for comfort, this is a really comfortable bra to wear, aside from it having a good structure, the material being so soft makes it very nice to wear, and because of the embroidered top, it minimises the dreaded 'double boob' effect that can happen from having a bra too small or with a hard edge.  This bra costs £26 and you can find it at the Panache site here.

Whats your favourite bra to wear during the colder months?  Are you bold and go for bright colours or do you play it safe?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

*I did not receive any money for this post, but Panache did send the bra to me as a gift


Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Blogmas Day 25 - Merry Christmas!!!

No reviews today, just a simple Happy Christmas message to you all :)  I don't know about the rest of you, Christmas is a bit bittersweet for me.  Since a young age I've never been able to spend it with both my parents so it was always either my dad or my mum.  These days it's split further (Dad, step dad, hubby's parents).  This Christmas we're spending it with hubby's parents which I'm really looking forward too - it's a day of the year that I often get a little emotional wishing that my mum was still with us.  But fond memories of our last Christmas together when she was poorly, we cooked a full Christmas dinner together and my brother was with us, first time in 15+ years :)

On a lighter note, I'm so grateful for many things, for the wonderful husband I have in my life, for my beautiful cat, our lovely (albeit a bit messy!) home, the fact we're able to afford things like internet, a car, presents for each other etc, such a lovely family both immediate and extended too, and some of the best friends a girl could wish to have.  

So Merry Christmas to you all, I hope you have a fantastic time with whomever you spend it with :)

N.B There'll be no blog post tomorrow, gonna have me a day off <3  (oh and I did schedule this in advance, no blogging on xmas day for me)  :)

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Monday, 24 December 2012

Blogmas Day 24 - A-Z Blogger TAG

Hey guys, It's Christmas EVE!!!!!!  OMG I'm so excited, I cannot wait for tomorrow!  I thought I'd do a little lifestyle post for you, a bit of a 'get to know me' post.  I've seen this A-Z blogger tag going around and really enjoyed reading other peoples answers so thought I'd give it a go myself :)  Oh and if you're reading this, you're totally TAGGED to do it too :)

Age: 33

Bed Size: King Size - hubby is 6ft5 and needs a long bed :)

Chore you hate: Food shopping... I hate it so much

Dogs: I have a cat <3  (I don't like dogs - don't hate me!)

Essential start to the day: Makeup of course!

Favourite colour: Purple, I love love love it!

Gold or silver: Silver

Height: 5ft6

Instruments you play: None very well, I used to play Piano and recorder when I was younger though :)

Job title: Digital Marketing Assistant

Kids: Maybe, not right now though ;)

Live: Cardiff, Wales - lovely place!

Mother's name: Mary (which is also my middle name)

Nicknames: George, Georgie - that's it, just shorter versions of my name :P

Overnight hospital stays: First one when I was 1 for gastroenteritis for just 1 night, then when I was 16 for a sever asthma attack, I was in for a week!

Pet peeves: Bad manners, people who are inconsiderate of others, selfish people and loud people.

Quote from a movie: "Milk was a bad choice" Anchorman

Right or left-handed: Right.

Stores you love: Superdrug and Debenhams (and Boots!) all for makeup :)

Time you wake up: 7:15, well technically I wakeup at 6:30 and I get up at 7:15

Underwear: Yes I wear it!

Vegetable you hate: Swede and Parsnip, yuck!

What makes you run late: Taking too long to do my makeup in the morning/evening!

Xrays you've had: Several chest xrays for chest infections, several ankle xrays for sprained ankles and a wrist xray when we thought it was broken, but it wasn't :p

Yummy food you make: Five bean chilli, cherry tomato and black olive pasta, olive and feta tart... quite a few :)

Zoo animals: Penguins (they're so cute!), Tigers (stunning creatures) and monkeys (cute!)

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Blogmas Day 23 - Revlon Photoready 3D volume mascara

Hey guys!  Can you believe it's Christmas eve eve!!!!  Today for me I'm looking forward to going to the cinema tonight, we're off to see 7 Psychopaths - a great cast and I've not read anything about it, so I'm really excited!  Tomorrow I'm working, but it's a slightly shorter day and I'm looking forward to that too - we've had Christmas music blaring for the last week or so and everyone's been in a great mood so it's a great atmosphere :)  Then after work, we're off to the other half's parents to put all the presents under the tree - the next few day are going to be awesome :)

So, on to the reason you're here!  Today I'm reviewing the Revlon 3D volume mascara.

Revlon Photoready 3D Volume Mascara, available in Superdrug & Boots for £10.99*

They say "Get glamorous, big volume lashes from every angle
Lashes look 100% more magnified, multiplied, amplified (with two coats). Award winning.
Lash finding brush with rounded tip easily reaches every single lash for maximum dimension."

My Thoughts

My first impressions were that I loved the look of the applicator, I really like the smaller brushes as they tend to grip my lashes much better to apply the product.  This looked perfect!

When I first started using it (a couple of months ago), I didn't like it at all.  It did a good job at keeping my lashes separated which is great, but the one thing it didn't do for me what exactly what it's called - it didn't give my lashes any volume.  It did give them definition, but I didn't feel that they stood out any more really.  However, after leaving it for a month or so to thicken up a bit (it's quite a wet formula to start with), I've found that it's now much, much better!  Now it's a bit thicker, it gives my lashes great volume and still retains the definition it gave me previously.  This is great by itself, or to use with false lashes too - I know lots of people use mascara with false lashes, but what you don't want is a mascara that clumps or gives spidery lashes, and this is perfect for that :)

Would I repurchase?  Yes, definitely, I'd just open it up, then leave it for a month, then use it :)  

Have you tried this yet?  What were your thoughts?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Blogmas Day 22 - Revlon Colourstay Foundation

Hey guys!  So we made it, the world didn't end, who knew!?  To kick off today I'm doing a little review for you of the Revlon Colourstay Foundation - something which is fairly new to me (I've known about it for ages but not taken the plunge) so here's what I think about it :)

Available in Boots and Superdrug stores for about £12 depending on offers

My Thoughts

For a long time I'd put off buying this, I thought it was a little expensive for a high street foundation, but I managed to pick it up on a 3 for 2 offer so it didn't feel as painful.  It's silly really, I'll happily spend £27 on YSL foundation but was hesitant to spend less than half of that on this... I think it's because I've been burnt on foundations before, spend over £10 and get a dud (like the L'Oreal lumi foundation).

I wasn't sure if the colour I bought was a bit too pale, but actually I think it's just about perfect!  It blends really well, sets beautifully (with a little help from powder) and lasts all day.  It needs a very small amount of touch up on fine lines, but honestly I'm starting to think that's just what happens as you get older :-(  Anyway, you get a decent amount of product for your money (30ml), and it's buildable, it's already a medium coverage foundation, but if you work with it, you can build it to heavy quite easily.  Heavy isn't my thing with foundation, I prefer something lightweight that just evens out my skintone.  All in all, this is a great foundation, I really like it, and I can honestly say this is one I would repurchase :)  Only negative is the scent, I know, I know, I banged on about scent of things yesterday, but it's true, it smells a bit chemicaly but once it's dried that goes :)

This is a great foundation to help you in the party season cover up all those blemishes from drinking too much and eating the wrong things :)

What do you think of the Revlon Colourstay foundation?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Friday, 21 December 2012

Blogmas Day 21 - Dermalogica

Hey guys!  First off, I'm really sorry for the absence of blogmas posts the last couple of days, I've had a stinking cold & cough and I've actually been off work with it #sadface So I just wasn't up to writing blogs for you, but I'm on the mend now ready for Christmas festivities :)

As you've probably guessed from the title, today I'm reviewing the cult item that is Dermologica Daily Microfoliant from Liberty of London.  Liberty has been around since 1875 selling things like skincare, accessories, fabric, beauty gift sets, clothes and much more.  I'm sure many of you will have seen their brand around and their iconic London tudoresque store.

A beautiful giftset that also comes with precleanse (on the left) and gentle cream exfoliant (on the right)

Available from Liberty of London for £38.50*

They say "Dermalogica's number one exfoliant, this gentle, rice-based exfoliating powder activates upon contact with water, releasing papain, salicylic acid and rice enzymes that micro-exfoliate dead cells, instantly leaving skin smoother and brighter. Formulated without artificial fragrances and colours. "

My Thoughts

I'm sure I'm not the only one who gets quite excited over the word 'Dermalogica', it's a cult item which for many has holy grail status.  You simply add around a flat teaspoon amount of it onto soaking wet hands, and work into your skin after cleansing.  I really like it, the soft abrasiveness gets rid of any dry/flaky skin off my face beautifully.  It's easy to rinse off and leaves my face feeling ever so clean.  So what holds me back from saying I love it?  I'll be honest, it's the scent... for some this may not be a big deal, but I'm really into scents and for me, this doesn't smell the best.  It's made from rice, so this shouldn't be surprising.  However I did see good results from it, not so many little red patches over my skin, smoother skin, less breakouts etc, so it's definitely doing something right, but I personally found it hard to use just because of the scent.    

I've not really seen many other people mention it (the smell), so I think it's either just me, or a small amount of us that don't like the scent.  What I will say though, is that after you've washed it off, the scent has gone, so it doesn't linger which is good.  So, I can understand why people love this so much, it's a fantastic product (albit rather a strange consistency), if you can put up with the odd scent I'm sure you'll love it, and it'll join your holy grail collections too.

Whats your thoughts on Dermalogica?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Blogmas Day 18 - Top 5 party lipsticks

Hey guys!

Sorry I've not been super on top of blogging every day (fail), I'm finding it hard to find the time what with lots of work Christmas parties etc and there just seems to be something on every day that I need to go to or do.  Anyway, enough of my excuses, on with the post :)

Oh, and sorry the images aren't up to my usual quality, I only have evening lighting at the moment :/

L-R Chanel Rouge Allure Laque in Dragon, MUA shade 13, MUA shade 2, Maybelline 338 Midnight Plum, Revlon Black Cherry

(same order as above)

With the party season well under way there are so many ways to wear your makeup for that big party.  I can't think of a more fabulous and glamourous look than a nice dark red lip and dramatic winged eyeliner.  These are some of my top picks for that great colourful lip for your Christmas party.

1.  Chanel Rouge Allure Laque in Dragon

For me, this is the perfect red, it's not too bright and not too dark, and contains just a tiny bit of glitter to give your lips the perfect amount of sparkle.  It lasts really well, you won't need to re-apply it every five mins but keeps your lips looking glossy.  You shouldn't find any bleeding into the fine lines around your lips at all, and you will find fantastic colour payoff.  Price is around the £20 mark, but you'll find this exact colour hard to get hold of now as it's discontinued (don't be scared to ask at the counter for them to check their stock though, that's how I got hold of mine).

2.  MUA Shade 13

This is a beautiful bright red lipstick.  As with pretty much all MUA lipsticks the quality is really decent and even if it wasn't amazing, for £1 it's hard to really find fault with it.  It lasts well and doesn't bleed/feather, and what I like most about these is you can buy the entire lipstick collection for about the same price as 1 MAC lipstick :D

3.  MUA Shade 2

This is a beautiful hot pink/red shade.  It's one of those colours where you can't quite tell if it's red or pink, the perfect balance of both.  Team this up with a strong winged eyeliner and some false lashes and you're good for whatever Christmas party you're headed too.  You won't need to reapply every 2 mins and you'll have stunning lips :)

4.  Maybelline Midnight Plum

I've actually had this shade for a while, it's not the most hydrating of lipsticks but given that it's such a pretty colour, I can forego that.  It has a small amount of tiny shimmery silvery glitter in it too, to help give your lips a bit of pop.  As it's not a very hydrating formula it'll last you well too, but if you're not so keen on slightly drier lipsticks, pop a sparkly lip gloss over the top for a super glamorous look.

5.  Revlon Black Cherry

The quintessential shade of A/W12.  Apply with a brush for a lovely purple/cherry colour, or straight from the bullet for a deep dark maroon/purple colour, depending on how dark you want your lips to be.  This shade won't feather/bleed and won't need re-applying constantly.  If you're looking for more shine, I can highly recommend Givenchy lip gloss/balms as the perfect accompaniment - they'll add sparkle and gloss, whilst providing your lips with a supply of non-sticky hydration.

So they're my picks, I hope you liked them :)  And I hope I managed to get this post out in time for you to pop out and pick up some of these shades for your xmas parties :)

Whats your favourite party lipstick shade?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Blogmas Day 15 and 16 a quick update

Hey guys! What a crazy couple of days it's been! First off, on Friday 14th I had my works Christmas do, which was super fun, I even got to see my CEO dancing to Gangnam Style :) but as I was heading to London the next day I didn't stay out late as I had an early start.

One really fun thing about getting ready on Friday night for the work event, was that I did makeup for 4 of my colleagues.  It was so much fun (and scary) having the responsibility of doing other people's makeup but I thoroughly enjoyed it :). I only managed to take one photo but here it is :)

I wanted to go for something pretty and understated and seeing as she was very pale and with blonde hair I thought a light gold smoky eye would be perfect :). Understated eye liner too, and the blush is London by Fashionista :)

So that was Friday :)

Saturday 15th was our trip to London for the #bbloggersxmas event, there were loads of bloggers there, mostly keeping within familiar company.  I knew no one but was welcomed to sit with a couple of fantastic and lovely ladies (Rachel from Sweetpea London and Sophia from Beauty in my Mind) :)  it was a super long day, we didn't get home until after 10pm but I thoroughly enjoyed it, and omg the goodie bags were amazing!!! Things like macadamia oil, magnifibres, lush bubble bars and lots and lots more, one of my favs being a pretty sleek palette :) keep your eyes peeled for future blog posts :)

Then today (Sunday 16th) I've kept a low profile as it was 11 years ago today that I met my husband, so we've had a film/sofa/pyjama day :)  so I'm sorry this isn't very Christmas themed but I've been really busy :). Hope you've all had a great weekend :)

What do you have planned for the next week?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3


Friday, 14 December 2012

Blogmas Day 14 - My top 5 Christmas movies

This is actually pretty hard for me to decide on, because I’m not sure there’s 5 films I really enjoy and watch at Christmas, but with that in mind, I’ll do my best and put them in reverse order :)

5.  Wallace and Gromit (the original)

The first time I saw this, was at Christmas, on BBC1.  I’m going back years and years ago, it was totally different from anything I’d seen before and the story was fantastic.  I can really relate to someone who loves cheese :)  I love watching any of these types of animations at Christmas (or any time of year to be honest!), The Chicken Run was another great one, and Shaun the sheep… I could go on, but you get the picture :)

4.  Santa Claus the Movie

Who doesn’t love a great film about Father Christmas at Christmas?  It’s such a lovely festive film, perfect to watch just before or just after Christmas dinner :)

3.  Home Alone

Great great great film, love it!  I love everything about it, how big the family is, their lovely house, how festive and cosy it feels, the crazy shenanigans of the burglers trying to get in, all of it, and of course, the late John Candy :)  I really hope they air it Christmas day as for some reason, I don’t own it on DVD… I think I’ll need to remedy that!

2.  It’s a Wonderful Life

This film I need to be on when I’m opening Christmas presents in the morning.  It’s such a great film, really iconic.  Great acting (especially the bit above the swimming pool, lol!) and a great story, and lets not forget the iconic line ‘every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings’ :)

1.  Elf

Oh man do I love this film!  I watch it all year round :)  It’s fun, festive, has Will Ferrell who always makes me laugh, silliness (which I’m a big fan of), Zooey Deschanel who is amazing… everything is right for this film, I love love love it :)  It was on the other day (I’ve lost my DVD of it), I just hope its’ on Christmas eve too, and Christmas day, and boxing day! They’re my top 5 films for Christmas, sorry it’s not a super long post but just something quick I wanted to share with you :)

What’s your favourite Christmas films?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3


Thursday, 13 December 2012

Blogmas Day 13 - Christmas Stuffing recipes

Hey guys!  It's not often I do food stuff on here, but I thought with it being Blogmas, it's the perfect excuse to do some Christmas recipe's :)  So, as you may know, I'm vegetarian, but I don't force that on others, so I have two recipes for you today, one is vegetarian and one isn't - they're both Christmas stuffing, ohm nom nom nom!

Chestnut, Bacon and Cranberry Stuffing

Something not typically traditional, yet incorporates traditional elements, which is why I think it sounds lovely. With both of these recipes, I haven't tried them, I found them on the wonder that is the internet, but thought they sounded lovely :)

image credit: pinterest


100g dried cranberries
50ml ruby port
1 small onion , chopped
2 rashers unsmoked back bacon , cut into strips
50g butter
2 garlic cloves , chopped
450g sausagemeat
140g fresh white or brown breadcrumbs
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
½ tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
140g peeled, cooked chestnuts , roughly chopped
1 medium egg , lightly beaten


1)  Soak the cranberries in the port for an hour. Fry the onion and bacon gently in the butter, until the onion is tender and the bacon is cooked. Add the garlic and fry for another minute or so.

2)  Cool slightly, then mix with all the remaining ingredients, including the cranberries and port, adding enough egg to bind - I find it easiest to use my hands. Fry a knob of stuffing in a little butter, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

3)  To Cook: This stuffing can be baked in a dish, or rolled into balls that will be crisp on the outside and moist inside. To bake, press the stuffing into a greased ovenproof dish in a layer that is around 4cm thick. Bake at 190C/gas 5/fan 170C for about 40 minutes, until browned and, in the case of sausagemeat stuffing, cooked right through. Alternatively, roll into balls that are about 4cm in diameter. Roast the stuffing balls in hot fat (they can be tucked around the turkey or done in a roasting tin of their own) for 30-40 minutes, until crisp and nicely browned on the outside.

And for the vegetarian option, we have....

Wild rice, chestnut and squash stuffing

This sounds delicious, I love butternut squash, and rice... and chestnuts... nom!

image credit: pinterest


1 onion , finely chopped
bottom half of 1 butternut squash , peeled and cut into small cubes
200g pack cooked chestnuts , chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
4 sage leaves, chopped plus extra sage leaves, to serve
200g mixed wild and basmati rice
500ml vegetable or chicken stock
25g Parmesan (optional) or vegetarian alternative, grated


1)  Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Tip the onion, squash and chestnuts into a roasting tin with the oil, chopped sage and seasoning, then toss well with your hands. Roast for 20 mins or until the edges of the squash start to tinge brown. If your oven is full, you can simply fry the lot together in a large frying pan.

2)  Add the rice and stir to coat it, then tip the lot into a saucepan. Add the stock and stir well. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20-25 mins or until the rice is tender and the stock absorbed. Add cheese, if using, and tip into a baking dish. You can now cover and chill the stuffing for up to a day. To finish, heat grill to high, then cook until the top is browned and crisp and the stuffing is hot through.

You'll have to let me know if you decide to have one of these, and how it turned out :)

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Blogmas Day 12 - A She Said Disappointment

I'm sorry to break the jovial festivities that is a super Christmassy blogmas, but after waiting a week for my She Said beauty box to be delivered, then getting it and being bitterly disappointed with it, I felt compelled to write about it.  I actually already had posts scheduled for today that I've moved so I could write this.

I've been subscribing to She Said since their 2nd or 3rd box, totally loved their style, the products, the price, the service, the beauty network, all of it.  But over the last few months I've grown to be more and more unhappy with the contents of the boxes I'm receiving.  Two months ago I decided that if last months' box wasn't great, I was going to unsubscribe, then it came and was actually pretty decent.  I'd foolishly assumed the Christmas box would also be great, seeing as it's Christmas, but oh no, boy was I wrong.  What I was sent, was far from what I'd expect from them.  I'll be honest, I was also a little disappointed that there wasn't anything festive about the box and packaging.

Here's what I got (excuse the photo's, it was dark when I got home).

First off, I know this sounds a bit like an ungrateful whine, but lets be honest, I've paid for this, and as a consumer I want to feel like I'm getting my monies worth.  The nail varnish, yes it's a nice colour, but seriously far from what I'd expect from this box (it's rrp is £1.25), then the eye shadow.  Again, nice colour, very very dry, but the worst part, what the hell am I supposed to put it in?  It comes in this rubbishy plastic protector and is like it's been removed from it's palette.  So, not likely to be something that I'll use much as the packaging is so bad.  The face oil (Orico) yeah... maybe it's ok, but having acne prone skin I'm not all that enamoured with adding oil to already oily skin.  Then we come to Doctor Duve, apparently each full size item would be over £100, yeah so that makes up for a poor selection of other stuf?  Then the free gifts, clay mask, nice, thank you - tea bags... really?

Yes I may be finding reasons not to like this box, but I feel like they give you about £3 worth of products for 2-3 months, so that they can afford to do a decent box with decent items in it and that's not how it works.  I expect a box of luxury sized high end samples.  I don't need items to be full sized (as nice as that is), I'd rather it was things I wouldn't usually be able to afford or discover new things.  Which is why I've now unsubscribed.  In Jan I'll be trying out Jolie box instead.  I never really see people moan and whine about the content of their boxes like they do she said and glossy box.

All in all, out of about... 6+ boxes I've had from She Said, I've been happy with 2 of them.  Just not good enough, this was for me, the final straw.  Sorry if this was a bit ranty for you, but there were just things I wanted to say and share with you, being as honest as I could be.

What did you think of your she said box this month?  

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Blogmas Day 11 - Eysilix - puffy eyes be gone!

Only 2 days to go until we start announcing winners of our Blogmas giveaway!  Even after winners are being announced, you can still enter the giveaway by subscribing to both our blogs so you're eligable for the last couple of days :)  Don't forget, this giveaway is open internationally too :)

Anyway, enough about that, on with why you're here!  When I was thinking about what kind of posts I'd be doing for Blogmas back in November, I was thinking there would be a lot of makeup looks, but in reality my focus has been on ways to keep your skin looking good for those partys - so with that in mind, I have a review for you today on a product called Eysilix.  I'll give you the sciency stuff, then what I think about it :)

Eysilix 15ml available in for £24.99*

They say "eysilix is the first eye treatment in the world to contain ten active peptides, which will temporarily inhibit the contraction of eye area wrinkles, making eyes appear ageless whilst preventing any further formulation of lines. The eye area is one of the first to show signs of ageing and exhaustion, however by using eysilix daily, the delicate eye area is invigorated in a flash, with all signs of tiredness diminished. eysilix immediately stimulates, energizes and hydrates fatigued skin tissues, to create the appearance of smoother, more youthful peepers through the use of five synergistic methods"

My Thoughts

I have to say I've been pretty impressed with this.  I think if I had small bags under my eyes it'd probably do a pretty decent job at minimising them, but I have massive bags that I don't think any amount of any product will even dent.  But, what it did do is minimise the appearance of my fine lines under my eyes.  Once I'd applied this and given it a moment to dry / set, I'd apply my foundation, then concealer and they definitely looked improved (compared to just foundation / concealer).  You only need a small amount for it to cover the area, you don't want to apply too much otherwise the concealer tends to stick to it a little.

The only real downfall of this is the price tag, £25.  Is it worth it?  I'm not 100% sure... probably if I had a few more fine lines would I find it more beneficial and wouldn't mind forking out £25 for it, but I only really have 1 under each eye.  My trick is more to draw attention away from them by having a great mascara, and for £25 you could by YSL Shocking (which is next on my list)... so I think it really depends on the size of your bags, and the amount of fine lines.  I'm sure as I get older and develop more, I'd be much quicker to run out and grab it :)

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Monday, 10 December 2012

Blogmas Day 10 - staying healthy during the festive season

Coming up to Christmas your skin takes a bit of a hammering.  We wear lots of makeup, to lots of parties, maybe come home a little worse for wear and don't take our makeup off before we go to bed.  So to keep your skin as perfect as possible during the holiday season for all those wonderful parties, follow my tips below for pristine skin :)

Keep hydrated

drink lots and lots of water!

Drink plenty of water - I know everyone says this, but it's true.  Drinking plenty of water isn't just good for you, but it's great for your skin.  If you're dehydrated it'll really show in your skin, so help stave off any fine lines by ensuring your skin is super hydrated with plenty of water.  As a side tip from that, I've been drinking a lot of Vita Coco water recently (coconut water), it's got natural electrolytes in it so you hydrate naturally, also it has loads of vitamins and goodness :)


n.b. probably better to use an actual cleanser, and not remove makeup with kittens

Remove your makeup with a proper cleanser.  I'll be honest, I used to be one of these people that would remove their makeup at night with a face wipe and that's it.  Not any more.  Now, I use a hot cloth cleanser (either Liz Earle or Superdrug Vitamin E).  It can be a massive pain but your skin will be so much better for it.  If you have lots and lots of parties planned for December, and think you might be a bit worse for wear and not in a fit state to take off your makeup when you get home, buy some makeup wipes and some Bioderma.  Make sure you use the bioderma after removing your makeup, but try to remove it with a proper cleanser first :)


use your favourite moisturiser every day

I moisturise my skin in the morning and the night, I try to use two different ones (a morning one and night one) but if you can't afford that, I'd highly recommend using the Nivea Pure and Natural moisturising day cream.  It's gotten rid of my acne thanks to the argan oil it contains, it's non-oily/greasy and absorbs really quickly and it's only just over £5, so very affordable.  I really notice a difference in my skin if I skip moisturising for a day or two, I get more fine lines and my skin just doesn't look as good.

Eat well

nom nom vegetable soup (meat is optional)

I'm sure most of you do anyway, and I know this time of year is fuelled with temptation, but on the days you're not eating out or with friends/family etc, try to eat lots of green vegetables, they're packed with goodness and keep you fuller for longer.  Try cooking up a big vegetable soup, adding a decent portion of vegetable boullion with it for extra flavour, not only is it affordable, it'll last you a couple of days too if you make a big batch :)

Vitamins & fruit

om nom nom fruit!

Taking a 1 a day vitamin is a great way to keep your body topped up with all the bits and bobs it needs, but if you're like me and struggle with the horrid taste of vitamins there are other options, like soluble orange vitamin C tablets, they can taste quite ok, or eat plenty of fruit!  Strawberries and Kiwi's both contain masses more vitamin C than oranges, did you know that?  And, in my opinion, they taste better too :)  Why not take it a step further and start the day with a fruit smoothie each day?  Just chuck your favourite fruit into a blender (to thicken consider adding half a banana) and 1/2 pt milk (or more if you wish).  To sweeten it either add the sweetener of your choice, or some honey :)

All image credits are weheartit

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Blogmas Day 9 - Feature: Homemade sugar lip scrub

The season of merriment, spiked-anything, and gift giving is finally here and yet, this year I find myself a little strapped for ideas that haven't been done a hundred times over.  And while I wrack my brain trying to come up with creative pressies for all the women in my life, I can't help but come back to that nagging feeling that maybe this year I should just embrace my inner DIY'in diva and gift my favourite gals with something that every woman needs this time of year.

Great skin

That's right, this year I plan on giving the gift of great skin and making my own DIY skincare products. Now if that sounds tedious to you, it's not. If that sounds expensive, it's not. If that sounds difficult, it's not.  Curious to find out how you can do the same? Read on.

Why DIY?

Simply put, buying hoards of presents can get pretty damn expensive. And if I'm being honest, they can also be a tad impersonal. I mean, sure, you could hit the mall, battle the crowds and fight over that final sale item but why do that to yourself?  Instead, why not create something that is more personal and customised to each of your girlfriends? Not only will it cost you less but it will mean more to them and you can finish all your gifts in one afternoon, from the comforts of your own home, with a glass of wine in your hand!  And the best part is, you only need to go as far as your local natural foods store to get everything you need. Bonus!  So let's get our DIY on, shall we?

image credit: weheartit

Aw Sugar Sugar

One of the easiest presents to make is a simple sugar scrub that will help to slough away the dead, dry, scaly skin we all seem to be cursed with once the mercury drops.  What's even better is that you can make your sugar scrub look, and smell, like a candy cane! How cute and festive!  The process is simple, all you need is:

1/2 cup of Shealoe Butter
10 big tablespoons of white Sugar
1/2 teaspoon of red Jojoba wax beads (if your local store doesn't have them, you can find them on Amazon)
2 teaspoons of white or pale yellow Beeswax
4-5 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil
2 medium sized mixing bowls
double boiler
a few glass jars or mason jars

Once you have all your ingredients and materials rounded up, follow this method:

1)  pour yourself a glass of wine and take a big sip
2)  add 5 tablespoons of your Sugar to each of your mixing bowls
3)  heat up your double boiler and melt 1 teaspoon of Beeswax
4)  stir in 1/4 cup of the Shaeloe Butter and turn off the heat on your boiler
5)  make sure you gently heat the Shaeloe Butter or you could run the risk of it separating
6)  once it is completely melted, stir both the Butter and Beeswax into one of your bowls of Sugar
7)  mix in a few drops of your Peppermint Oil and stir well
8)  stir in 1/2 teaspoon of your red Jojoba wax beads and continue to mix well
9)  scoop your entire mixture into a resealable bag

Repeat this exact procedure again but do not add in the red wax beads.

1)  once you have your two mixtures (one red and one white), allow them to cool down completely
when they are cool to the touch, roll both mixtures into one corner of each bag and cut the tip of the bag (think icing a cake)
2)  pipe your mixture onto the walls of your glass jars, alternating colours so you get the candy cane effect
3)  once the walls of your jars are completely covered fill the rest of the jar with the remainder of your mixture
4)  add a funky swirling detail to the middle if you are feeling extra crafty that day

image credit: weheartit

While it may seem like a painstaking process, once you get the hang of it you can make large batches and crank out multiple jars at a time. In addition to that, the scrub smells amazing and will leave their skin feeling soft and naturally hydrated.

You can even further customize the jars by adding personalized labels, decorating the lid of the jar, or tying a sweet little ribbon around the neck of the jar – just let your imagination run wild!

Et voila! All of your holiday shopping done in one afternoon of wine drinking and DIY'ing! Suddenly gift giving just got a lot more fun.

Of course, this isn't the only option for DIY pressies so please, if you have any other DIY ideas, share them in the comment section below. After all, we ladies love options!
Happy holidays beauties!

Vanessa is the chief blogging babe for where she blogs and vlogs about all things skincare including product reviews as well as quick and dirty DIY tricks that help her readers to look and feel their very best!

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Blogmas Day 8 - Christmas Party Nails

Hey guys!  Can you believe it's only 17 days until Christmas? This month is going so fast it's making my head spin!

So I sat down today and thought, what can Blogmas Day 8 be about (I have written a bit of a plan, but I wanted to do something nails orientated as I didn't put any nail stuff in my plan).  I peered over to my nail polish collection, and 2 polishes had fallen together in the bag and I thought they'd make the perfect pairing for a festive mani, so here's my festive inspired nails!

I'm not going to do the usual 'my thoughts' here as it's not a review, but I used Essie's Recessionista, and Model's Own glitter ball in Hot Stuff.  The two go perfectly together!  Recessionista is a beautiful maroon toned colour (very on trend and glam), and Hot Stuff brings the party with an assortment of different shaped glitter, perfect for Christmas parties :)

The nice thing is, depending on what you're wearing, you can team up Hot Stuff with an assortment of colours for it to look nice, it looks beautiful with Essie's Fiji, and equally as lovely with any black nail polish too.  I actually have a work xmas party on the 14th and this is how I plan to do my nails for that :)

What's your favourite festive combination?

This months big pixi3 advertiser is the lovely Anastasia from Fashion Ramble - be sure to head over to check out her beautiful blog <3
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