Benefit Rockateur – tricks and tips

So, for my birthday I was lucky enough to receive some Benefit treats from my Mum.

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It’s no secret to any beauty product junkie that Benefit delivers! All of the products are beautiful, feel light on the skin, have staying power and create a satisfying overall look.
However, as Rockateur is the new blusher on the block, I wanted to share a couple of tips that I learnt at the tester session.

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Firstly, the blusher comes in the well designed packaging that we have grown to expect from Benefit, it also includes a good quality brush and mirror. The product itself gives a beautiful, bronzed glow to the face and sits lovely on the Hello Flawless foundation.
Depending on your beauty budget, £20+ may be a little steep for a blusher; therefore, I was excited to learn that it makes a beautiful lipgloss, by simply mixing the blusher with clear lipgloss and it can be used on the eyes to create a natural eyeshadow look.
Being able to use the blusher for other parts of the makeup routine, for me, makes it value for money.

Here’s my before and after:

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Other tips that I’ve picked up include mixing the Benefit highlighter with the primer, this gives an added glow, and I also extend the hydration concealer up from under the eye, towards the cheek bone – this helps highlight the face.

My final recommendation is that if you’re going to purchase Benefit products or any other high brands, go and have a tester session first – that way you can be sure you’re using the makeup to it’s full potential.

I hope this post has been useful, do you have any makeup tricks or tips?

Our Big Brother live experience #BBUK

It’s been a short while since my previous post – I think we’ve all just been out trying to make the most of this weather, it’s been so lovely!

Anyway, I wanted to fill you in on something I’ve done over the last couple of weeks (other than have lots of BBQ’s and drink Pimms) and that was going to watch Big Brother Secrets and Lies, live. It was my first time being part of a studio audience for a TV show and it was just fab! I received tickets free from Applause Store, where anyone can apply for tickets for a whole range of shows.

Me and my friend, Charlotte, decided we would make a night of it and booked a hotel near Elstree studios. We got the train down there and enjoyed a glass of vino or two along the way ;). It’s important to arrive at the studio early if you only have a general ticket, as not everyone is guaranteed to get in; we got there for around six and waited anxiously.

The show was so good, better than what we both expected! It was two Friday’s ago when Jemima left the house.. and we did plenty of chanting. “Get Jemima out!” When I watch the Big Brother Live Eviction on TV, I always feel sorry for the contestants’ being booed; however, when you are there the atmosphere takes over and you get really into the night. Before the show and during the breaks there is a ‘ warm up’ man who really gets the crowd going with singing, chanting and games. I also have to say how lovely Emma Willis is – she was really making an effort with the crowd.

Unfortunately, mobiles and cameras aren’t aloud in the studio – so I don’t have any photo’s to share with you all! However, I’d definitely recommend going and would attend again myself – it was just fab! I’m a bit if a reality TV junkie anyway but this series of #BBUK has just been fab!

Couch to 5k – the final stretch!

I’m a little late with this post, as we actually finished the course the week before last; however, with the kids off for half term, I haven’t got round to sharing our success with you guys 🙂

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So basically, we did it!! A full 30 minutes of running, with ease as well – there wasn’t any moaning or even asking if it was possible – rather unlike the first week, when one minute of running was a chore! We just set off and kept going, not only can we run for 30 minutes now, we also enjoy it, which is amazing!

We’re living proof that given nine weeks, a good program to follow and in our case the support of a fantastic coach, anyone can become a runner!

Week 8 of the routine consisted of three 28 minute runs.
Week 9, the final week consisted of three 30 minute runs.

I really think that after week 5, when we had to jump up to running 20 minutes, the course became easier. This was because once 20 minutes had been run the rest was achievable.

This week I haven’t run, mainly due to my daughter being off for half term; however, today I’m back on it! My next personal goal is to go from 5k to 10k. I really would recommend the couchto5k course to anyone, I’d also like to take this opportunity to once again thank Pete, our coach. It’s amazing being able to leave the house and just run; it has so many benefits not only physical but also mentally too – running is a great way of letting go of stress.

I’ll keep you updated on future progress.

Figure fixation

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Ok, so the title of this blog is quite unusual; however, having an in depth think about my figure, I’ve decided that it’s not something I want to be fixed on. I’ve gained a few pounds over the last couple of years, and you know what? That’s fine!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m by no means what I would call fat but having previously always been a size eight, when I did start to gain weight, I hated it! I put it down to a few things, metabolism changing and mainly becoming content with my boyfriend.

I’ve toyed with diets before, in particular weight watchers, but I think there’s a reason they haven’t worked and that’s because I’ve done it because society says that you should be size eight, rather than because I actually care. Of course, there are things I would love to change about my body, for example a toned midriff area; however, when I was a size eight I hated my thighs, so I guess we’re never satisfied anyway.

I’m not encouraging people eat until they’re obese or anything, but a healthy balance with the odd slice of pizza/donut now and again, isn’t going to hurt anybody! Since being ‘curvier’, for the first time in my life I actually have boobs, their not huge or anything but they are there! It’s just important to dress for your figure, like now I’d never wear a crop top because my love handles would look hideous and when I was really thin, I’d never have worn a low cut top because my cleavage wouldn’t fill it.

I do promote being healthy with a balance though; if you read my blog you will know that I’ve recently taken up running – so if I lose weight through this, that’ll be cool too! I just don’t think we should stress so much about our bodies, I see so many beautiful girls caught up on it and it’s a shame! I mean I’m not a size 6/8 like our magazines and media promote, however, I am under the national average – which is actually a size 14! Most importantly, I’m happy and life is just too short!

In the words of Beyonce “love your curves” 😉

Image sourced from Pinterest.

#Alton Towers

Yesterday me and Kev visited Alton Towers, we both had a fab day. We both hadn’t been for a few years, so there was lots of rides that we hadn’t yet experienced – which made it more exciting for both of us!

It was a great time of year to go, with the kids still at school and it not yet summer, it was fairly quiet and there wasn’t any queues – we went on everything and some things twice! I’m not going to talk about the rides incase it spoils it for anyone, but for a surprise I’d definitely recommend Thirteen and the Nemesis Sub terror ( an underground ride to compliment the existing Nemesis).
A money saving tip, for our entry we used two for 1 from Kellogg’s cereal boxes.

Here’s a few pics from our day:

This is a before and after shot of me on the log flume at around 8 years old and now, at 24. I love the terror in my face on the first photo; the pic is of me, my Dad, Nana and Grandad.

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Me and Kev on the Skyride.

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The new ride for 2013, The Smiler, isn’t open until the 26th May, so we didn’t get to go on it but I got a pic, and it looks amazing!

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We really did have a fab day, I can’t wait until my daughter is old enough to go on the big rides – I can’t imagine how awesome they’ll be by then.

Couch to 5k – week 7

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I can’t believe I’ve completed week seven of the couch to 5k course! This means that I only have two weeks of training left, when I should be able to run the full 5k!

This week has been a real game changer within the program, this is because each routine consisted of a full 25 minutes of running! Even though I ran 25 minutes in the previous week, then my other two runs had some interval training, which means I had some walking time in between runs – it has been an achievement now that the walking time has gone! The walking time is excluded completely at this stage in the program, therefore, each week the running time just progresses!

My boyfriend came for a 25 minute run with me and it felt amazing to be able to chat on the way round, and not be puffing and panting for my breath. It really is fantastic when I think back to week one, when I was shattered after running for one minute. I can’t thank our coach, Pete, enough for enabling us to get to this stage of running!

This week I also did my first run in the rain; I have to admit, I was definitely one of those people who would drive past runners in the rain and question whether they was crazy!? And now I’m one of those runners.

The end is in sight for me on this program; however, it definitely isn’t the end of running for me, next I hope to go from 5k to 10k.

Image sourced from Pinterest.

Rimmel Salon Pro by Kate Moss #review

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With gel nail varnish becoming increasingly popular, I wanted to try Rimmel Salon Pro by Kate Moss, and see if it really does live up to the salon gel brands.

I tried the varnish in the Hip Hop shade which I really like, it’s bright and bold – perfect for summer! As you can see from the photo, the nail varnish has a really impressive high shine finish. It also applies really easily and dries fast – on the image I’m wearing two coats.

I can’t complain about the price either, with the product being under £5. The varnish is supposed to stay on for 10 days, so far I’ve had it on for three and it’s still going strong.

One thing that I did expect from the varnish is a thicker consistency; however, I really can’t fault it, I’m hugely impressed with these varnishes. With Kate creating 10 shades altogether, I’ll definitely be purchasing more from this range!

I purchased mine from Boots, and at the moment if you spend over £10 on Rimmel products, you receive Rimmel Volume Scandal Eyes Flash Mascara absolutely free – Brucey bonus!!

Have you tried it yet?

Couch to 5k – week 6

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This week I’ve really enjoyed running, I think completing the 20 minute run in the previous week has made me realise that the 5k is now achievable, and within reach. I mixed up my routes a little and had a bit of a country run.

This week’s routine:

Run one: run five minutes, walk three minutes, run eight minutes, walk three minutes and then run five minutes.

Run two: run ten minutes, walk three minutes and then run another 10 minutes.

Run three: run 25 minutes with no stopping.

We all managed the 25 minute run with ease, which is amazing when thinking back to week one.

Pete, our coach, was most impressed that we all managed to maintain a pace that we was comfortable with, this meant we were able to have a conversation while running.

I can’t believe I’m now on week seven of the course and only have two weeks left; it really is proving successful!

Beauty in Bahrain #henna

During my recent trip to Bahrain, I fell in love with a new beauty regime – henna!

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It’s something that I’ve always admired from afar, the detail is just incredible! It was fabulous being in a place where you can just have a henna done with ease, and my daughter loved it too!

I had two done and the ladies that did both were incredibly quick and skilled; they use a tube and just apply it freehand, it really is amazing to see! When first applied it needs leaving for 30 minutes to dry, then it goes all crumbly and comes off, leaving you with an orange pattern, after a few hours this turns dark brown.

I don’t have tattoos, mainly because I’m so indecisive that I’d be scared of going off them, so this was perfect for me!

What do you think?

Couch to 5k – week 5!

Last night I completed week five of the couch to 5k programme!

This week has been a real turning point in the course, because me and the rest of the group managed to run for a solid 20 minutes.

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I’m so proud of us all, in week one we were tired after one minute of running, so we really have progressed so much! To acknowledge how far we have come, our coach Pete, rewarded us each with a certificate, which we were all really pleased with.

Last night before we set off, I felt really nervous – the longest I’d run before this was eight minutes, so going from eight to twenty, seemed like a mountain to climb; however, afterwards I felt fantastic!

During the course of week five, the routine changed with each run, so we completed three runs and each was different.

Run one: Five minute warm up, five minute run, three minute walk, five minute run, three minute walk, five minutes of running and a five minute cool down.

Run two: Five minute warm up, eight minute run, five minute walk, eight minute run and a five minute cool down.

Run three: Five minute warm up, 20minutes running, five minute cool down.

Each run begins with dynamic stretching and long stretches to finish.

I really would recommend that anyone who wants to begin running, no matter what their fitness level, complete this course! It really is broken down into manageable pieces and the sense of achievement, along with the increased fitness levels is just brilliant! It’s been fantastic running with a team and a coach, because it encourages you to keep going and the correct techniques are learnt to keep you track.

We still have four weeks to go, but now the 5k seems reachable 🙂