31 May 2015

Lupita Mexican Restaurant | Lifestyle

Lupita Mexican Restaurant

Lupita Campechano Tacos

A couple of weeks ago I tried out a Mexican restaurant call Lupita, which is a Mexican street food style restaurant much like Wahaca. I love Mexican food, there is always a really great variety of flavours. 

I have to start off with the cocktails, I had a Strawberry Maragrita which was absolutely divine, incredibly tasty and it was the kind of cocktail where you could taste the alcohol but it wasn't overpowering at all. 

Moving onto the actual food, for starters we had nachos - naturally, I mean I love nachos whether I'm in a Mexican restaurant or not. This was served with guacamole which I'm not really a fan of, créme fraiche, salsa guajillo which was pretty hot actually, and crumbled Queso Fresco. Nachos are always a great little starter but we also got Queso Fundido, which is small chopped up pieces of chorizo in melted cheese served with 3 tortillas. I was expecting quite a lot for this starter because I love cheese and I love chorizo however I found that there was just too much cheese, I would have preferred less cheese and more chorizo but it was still pretty tasty.

For my main meal I had the Campechano tacos, which are two small tacos topped with pieces of steak, chorizo and pork chicharron which essentially is a lighter version of a pork scratching or fried pork rind. These were really yummy, fantastic flavours and I like that you only get two tacos because it's just enough to enjoy it but not feel massively bloated and full after it. I can't quite remember how much everything came to but it was fairly reasonable.

The service was fantastic there, everyone was incredibly friendly but the really interesting thing is that on each table there was an electronic device with 3 little buttons, which when pressed would get the attention of the waiter/waitress by sending an alert to a device on their wrist. Really impressive.  

I really enjoyed my visit to Lupita, have you ever been before?

28 May 2015

Jelly Pong Pong Bronzer Duo | Beauty

I was very excited to see this appear in May's Birchbox because it's not a brand I've heard of but I just liked the packaging and the shades. 

So this is the Jelly Pong Pong (what a name) Bronzer Duo, which includes obviously a bronzer and a blusher. These are quite small, so a little fiddly to get my blush brush in the pan without putting too much bronzer on there. I must admit the bronze has a very orange tone to it which is hard to wear for all skin tones, being of the pasty pale variety I struggled a little with this bronzer. You have to be so careful not to go over the top with this shade and to be honest I wasn't great with it. I think this could work a little better for me if I had a tan to start with. 

That being said, I really adore the blusher, its a gorgeous shimmery shade and it's a little deeper than what I'm used to, I go for a more natural blush but it's just so lovely! I wouldn't wear it everyday but if I was going out of felt like being a little glamorous then I would definitely reach for this blush.  I also discovered that I can wear this blush as an eye shadow too, how handy is that? It's far easier to get my eye brushes in the pan than my blush brush I must admit. I think on the eye it doesn't last as long but let's face it, it's intention isn't to be an eye shadow. 

Overall, I really like this Jelly Pong Pong product and would definitely try out some other products from the brand too.

Have you tried anything from Jelly Pong Pong?

26 May 2015

Caudalie Radiance Tinted Moisturiser | Beauty

This Caudalie product came in my MAY BIRCHBOX but I as so excited to try it out that I thought I would review it on it's own. 

I haven't really tried that may Caudaulie products but this is the Vinoperfect Radiance Tinited Moisturiser. Sometimes I really don't want to wear a full face of make up, of course I will when I am at work but when its the weekend and I'm not venturing far I just want something with a bit of coverage. Recently I have been loving the Sleek CC Cream because it give a nice coverage but doesn't suffocate my pores as much as my normal foundation would. 

I recieved the 01 Light shade which is a pretty good match for me actually, I hate it when you get samples and they are too dark to try out. This moisturiser is really lovely and I think if you had smooth skin it would be perfect but unfortunately I have bad acne scarred skin which means that I just couldn't really wear this product outside on it's own. I rarely leave the house without make up just because my skin is bad, it's scarred, it's aged because of the terrible acne but it is hydrated. 

This product is lovely because of it's lightweight formula, it really does mositurise my skin very well and if I had smooth skin I'd definitely be buying the full sized product. 

What would you reccomend to try out from Caudalie?
24 May 2015

Sawadika Thai Restaurant | Lifestyle

Today I thought I would share with you my thoughts on a local Thai restaurant just around the corner from where I work called Sawadika. I am a massive fan of Thai food and noodles so Sawadika is one of those places I've been too a fair few times but I really enjoy it each time. What I really like about this restaurant is that it isn't part of some massive chain where everything always tastes the same, it's small and cosy.

They do a variety of different menus and I have also had the lunch menu which is just as yummy. One evening a couple of week's ago we decided to come here again, though the person I was with had never been to it before but he had heard good things. We just decided we'd go for starters, the mains and of course, a bottle of wine.

For starters we had, Golden Bags (ahem!) which were these tiny little parcels filled with prawn, chicken and vegetables. Now these were incredibly tasty, I'm not a massive fan of prawns but I couldn't even taste them. I had to have Satay Chicken, I mean chicken and peanuts, they're like my two favourite things. I really really like the peanut sauce that comes with the chicken skewers, I could eat that stuff on it's own but it goes really nicely with the chicken. There was also some spicy Thai crackers that had a great kick to them.

For mains, I must admit I went perhaps a little boring and got the Chicken Pad Thai, but I just love it so much. I have had Chicken Pad Thai's in a lot of different restaurants and a lot of the time they are fine, but this one always has such a good mix of flavours I literally finish the entire plate. Love it. The person I was with had Drunken Noodles which I have to say are frickin' spicy, I only had one tiny little noodle and my mouth was on fire, unfortunately I didn't take a picture. To give you a bit more of a description the menu reads - Stir fried Hofun noodles with fresh chillies, mixed Seafood and green Peppercorn, fragrant with holy basil. Very spicy, but pretty damned tasty too.

When it comes to price I think that Sawadika is fantastic, the meal (excl. wine) came to £33.80 which I think is great considering the quality and the portion sizes, you get a lot of noodle for your money.

Where is your favourite Thai restaurant to eat?
21 May 2015

Max Factor Creme Puff Blush | Beauty

Max Factor Creme Puff Blush

Creme Puff Blush in Lovely Pink

I finally caved and bought the Max Factor Creme Puff Blush, I have seen just so many pictures and reviews, I needed this blusher. I will admit, I really struggled to narrow down which shade I wanted, some were just too dark for my skin tone as I'm quite pale with a fair complexion. 

But I was really torn between Lovely Pink and Seductive Pink, it was a very tough decision, I was standing in the make up isle of Boots for a good 5 mins just thinking about it. I finally settled on Lovely Pink, it's just a softer shade that I would get more wear from. 

I must admit that I don't always wear blusher because I find it really hard to get a good shade for me, I don't want massively bright pink cheeks. What I like about these Max Factor blushers is that there are a mix of multi tonal pigments, so this has a lovely amount of shimmer and I think could almost be doubled as a highlighter if you use it very lightly. The pictures simply do not do it justice, it's so pretty!

This is a very easy blusher to blend because of the light pigments which is great for me because I can be a little heavy handed with blushers and contour shades which means I have to spend ages trying to blend it out. Where as the Creme Puff Blush just sweeps onto the face so nicely.  

Have your tried the Max Factor Creme Puff Blush?

19 May 2015

Lola Barcelona Nails Polish | Beauty

Lola Barcelona - Born

Close Up Lola Barcelona Born

This Lola Barcelona nail polish came in my April Birchbox and the shade I received was Born but I loved it so much that I thought I would write a separate post on it. 

I adore nude shades and this one is perfect for me, what I really like about this Lola Barcelona polish is that it's different from your normal nude polishes because it has a bit of shimmer in it which you know I'm always a massive fan of. When I wear this polish I love how subtle it is and because it has purple undertones I would imagine this look gorgeous on darker skin tones as well. 

In terms of longevity it kinda falls in the middle, it's not incredibly long lasting but it doesn't chip as quick as other polishes I have tried recently. But It's just so bloody pretty I don't mind the odd bit of chipping here and there. 

Have you tried any Lola Barcelona nail polishes yet?
17 May 2015

Hush Brasserie, Holborn | Lifestyle

Hush - chardonnay and peach spritzer

Hush Brasserie butterfly chicken

Hush Brasserie butterfly chicken

Hush Brasserie Spicy Sweet Potato Mash

A couple of weeks ago my director took us our for a team lunch which of course you know I'm happy about. I work near Holborn so we decided to go to Hush Brasserie, which I have actually been to before but I always love the food there. It's one of those places that you wouldn't immediately think to go to, it's not a massive chain and I have in the past, completely walked past it. However if you do walk past one in  Holborn or St. Pauls then you must stop in, even if it's just for some nibbles and cocktails. 

They have a massive wine list, but because it was a work lunch I opted for the Chardonnay and Peach Spritzer, well actually I had two of them because they were just so delicious. I find that the prices at Hush are fairly reasonable for their spritzers at £4.95 a glass. 

For my lunch, I decided to go for the butterfly chicken, which has a red pepper relish and topped with rocket, with spicy sweet potato mash for a side dish. The butterfly chicken is literally just that, so I would recommend ordering a side dish. They also have fries made with truffle oil and Parmesan cheese which are bloody gorgeous. Admittedly, the butterfly chicken was spread quite thinly, but it was delicious, the red pepper relish was the real winner though. I love peppers and this relish had a really nice tang to it, as well as being a little sweet. Moving onto the spicy sweet potato mash, I must admit I never used to be a fan of sweet potato. But when I tried the fries I fell in love so it's kind of opened my eyes a little more. Plus I've adopted a healthier lifestyle which means white potato is something I never reach for now so this is a great alternative. I really loved the mash, it was a perfect side dish to the chicken and the pepper relish. I liked that the mash wasn't too spicy but it had a bit of a kick. I didn't eat it all, it was quite a hearty portion. The pesto worked quite well with the meal too.

Overall I think my meal came to around £29 which I don't think is a bad price because the quality of the food is really great. My colleagues had various different things, from steak, to salmon to lobster roll, truffle mash, a really great range of food. 

Have you been to Hush Brasserie?

14 May 2015

NYX Butter Gloss | Beauty

NYX Butter Gloss

NYX Butter Gloss in Maple Blondie

NYX Butter Gloss in Creme Brulee

When the stunning Lizzie from Pretty Vices came to London she bought a long with her these NYX two beauties! Lizzie came from New York with work and she obviously understands my love for all things beauty and thought I would appreciate something from this brand. NYX isn't a brand I have tried before though I know you can get some products over here in the UK but I never see them in any shops. She gave me two of her favourite shades which are Maple Blondie, that is a gorgeous coral kinda shade and Creme Brulee which is a more muted nude shade. 

I must admit, this girl knows me well, I adore both shades and being a fellow blondie she knows they would suit my skin tone as well.I love a lip gloss but sometimes they can often be incredibly sticky and hard to wear however these Butter Glosses are just gorgeous. They really do feel very soft, buttery and nourishing on the lips. I really do love these two shades, so easy to wear. 

I found that Maple Blondie was slightly more pigmented on the lips than Creme Brulee, the coral shade definitely stands out more but it's really lovely. However I have found myself constantly reaching for Creme Brulee, it's just such a wearable shade as it only adds a subtle hint of colour to the lips. 

I am in love with these Butter Glosses but this means I definitely need to try out more from NYX. I know the price point is fairly low so it's definitely going to make it easy to try more from this brand. 

What are your favourite NYX products? 
12 May 2015

May Birchbox | Beauty

May Birchbox UK

Inside May Birchbox UK

Another month, another Birchbox and this month's theme is Free Your Mind (and the rest will follow!). I feel that Birchbox is really trying to engage with consumers, they offer the ability to choose which sample you'd like, next month you're going to be able to choose your own design for the box and this month you can actually colour it in. Its a really nice touch!

This month I'm actually pretty happy with the contents, starting with colouring pencils. I think it's fun that they have actually provided the pencils to fill in your box. Another product I was really happy to see was the Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Tinted Moisturiser. I received a great light shade and will be writing a separate review in a few weeks.  

Next we have the WAH London Nail Art Pen, this is another fun addition to the box this month however I imagine it's probably still going to be a little tricky to draw on my nails but I'll try it out and report back to you guys on that one. Also we have some Whish Body Butter, I wasn't too excited when I saw this because I have so many different types of moisturisers that I don't really need another one. BUT the smell of this stuff, oh my god! It smells edible because it has shea butter and raspberry butter! 

Moving onto to a couple of products I'm not that thrilled about and one is the Parlor sea salt spray, I just will never use the stuff. I can't rock the messy beach babe look, I just end up looking like a cave woman who has been dragged through a bush backwards!  No.4 Reconstructing Masque I'm a little undecided on, basically you use it after you have shampooed your hair leave on for 2-5 minutes and rinse. But It says to use sparingly because it's a highly concentrated formula so I'm unsure of how much of this sample I can use. 

Finally we have the Jelly Pong Pong Caribbean Sun Bronzer Duo and what a beauty it is. I'm gonna properly review it in a different post but my immediate thoughts are that this looks like a lovely product. The bronzer is slightly orange toned but the blusher that comes with it is a shimmery deep pink colour, which I think could actually work well as an eye shadow too. 

What did you think of this month's Birchbox?
10 May 2015

Baker Days Letterbox Cake Review | Lifestyle

Baker Days Letterbox Cake

Baker Days Honeypot Blogs

This week I was very kindly sent a Bakers Day cake to review and look how cute it is! 

Baker Days create personalised cakes for pretty much all occasions which also includes cupcakes, they have various different designs but they can also add any picture to the cake including photographs. The really unqiue thing about Baker Days though is they have a Letterbox Cake, essentially this a silm cake one tier cake and it's about 5 inches which can easily fit through your letterbox. It retails for £14.99 which I think is an utter bargain. I think it makes sending cakes to your relatives much easier because sometimes they may live several miles away. I love a bit of personalisation and the fact you can design you own cake is a really fantastic idea, which I think many people will also love. 

When it arrived it also received a little card, two candles, 3 balloons and a little party horn thing (don't actually know what it's called). The cake comes in the cutest tin that I will definitely be using again. It was perfectly packaged and I was so impressed. 

My cake filling was vanilla sponge but they also do, chocolate sponge, half and half (choc and vanilla), fruit cake, gluten free and dairy free. I really like the fact they can provide dairy and gluten free options. The sponge was delicious, moist and a really nice density. 

I think the Letterbox cake is a brilliant idea for a gift and would definitely buy them for friends or family members.

Have you bought any cakes from Baker Days?
7 May 2015

Clarins Concealer Stick | Beauty

Clarins Concealer Stick

This is another Clarins sample I got from my beautiful friend Vernia, this is the Clarins Concealer Stick in the shade 01 Light Beige. 

I have a love/hate relationship with concealers because it's so bloody hard to find the right one, the colours are always very limited and then you have to figure out whether you want one like this or a more liquid one, it's just always such a hard decision. I'm still hunting for my perfect one. 

When I swatched the Clarins concealer stick on the back of my hand the first thing I noticed was what a great match it was for me it just seemed to blend in quite well. But when I went on their website there are only like 4 different shades available for this concealer stick which isn't a great range for different skin tones. The formula of this product is quite thick and creamy which does give really great coverage though I did find it kinda fell into the creases which did look a little cakey but you just have to blend this product out for a more natural look. 

I found that this Clarins Concealer stick is actually very long lasting which is great because you know that your make up is still in place towards the end of the day. This retails for about £19.50 which isn't the cheapest product out there but it certainly isn't the most expensive I've never really looked at Clarins for makeup, but I'm really starting to open to Clarins as not just a skincare brand but a makeup band. 

What make up do you recommend from Clarins?
5 May 2015

Beauty Blogger Confessions | Beauty

This post was inspired by  A Little Obsessed, it looked like and easy fun so I though I would share with you my top 10 beauty blogger confessions.  
  1. I cannot use any new product without taking a picture first, no swatches, no uses. The blog picture always comes first
  2. Once I painted the nails of only one one hand because I was only using that hand in my pictures, I spent the entire day with just one set of nails painted. 
  3. I never owned a proper eye shadow palette until I started blogging...a year ago!
  4. I secretly quite like washing my makeup brushes
  5. I take all my product pictures first thing on a Saturday or Sunday morning
  6. If I take pictures of used products I have to use face wipes to clean them up a bit.
  7. I sometimes use blue tack/white tack to keep little sample products in place in my pictures
  8. I've never bought anything from Benefit but have so many different samples of their products
  9. I love product samples, all product samples, I'll literally try anything!
  10. I cannot leave the house without liquid eyeliner and mascara. End of! 
There we have my beauty blogger confessions - what are yours?
3 May 2015

Vinopolis | Lifestyle

The other week I went for a wine tasting session at Vinopolis and loved it so much I thought I would share with you my experience. 

I will just say that I didn't take as many pictures as I probably should have, I was just enjoying myself so much I kinda forgot and I'm sure it got a little boring for the person I was with taking random snaps. Vinopolis is located kinda near London bridge so it's a pretty great location, but I've never even walked past it before but I've heard of it. 

Vinopolis offer several different wine tasting packages but the one we picked was the Self-Guided Wine Tasting package. Essentially this means you can wander around a select which ever wines you'd like to try. When you arrive you are taken into a separate room with a taster of wine and a member of staff with guide you through how to different ways to identify different things about the wine such as age, location, scents to pick up on, different flavours etc. Our guide was a chap called Robert, who was a treat, really friendly and quite quick witted. 

On this tour you get a card that has tokens on it and you can buy cards that have 7, 12 and 16 tokens. Basically each taster of wine is around 1-2 tokens but I think the spirits and champagne are slightly more, but we focused on the wine. I must admit I loved how chilled and easy the wine stating was, you kinda wander around at your own pace. Each cabinet had 4 different bottles of wine you can chose from, I would definitely advise you and the person you're with get separate wines so you and swap and taste each other's. 

I really enjoyed my experience at Vinopolis, it was fun, relaxed and delicious. 

Have you been to Vinopolis before?