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6 May 2016

Kiko haul

Kiko haul

I don't often do haul posts, mainly because I literally only have a Boots and a Superdrug in my local town so it's not often I can go to 'proper' make-up counters and shops. You might have read here that recently I went on a shopping trip to Bath where there is a very lovely little Kiko store. As soon as I saw it I marched straight over, it was absolutely packed but it's a beauty blogger's dream!

I am a big fan of Kiko and in the past have been sent quite a few products to try for the old blog. I wanted to pick up a few new bits but found out that you have to make a minium of £25 order on the website, which in this day and age I find very odd. Especially as at the time I only wanted a couple of nail polishes.

Anyway, the main display in the store was packed full of the absolutely gorgeous 'Trend' limited edition collection and while it was extremely tempting to pick everything up, I was very well restrained and only picked up something I would actually use, which was the eyeshadow and kajal pencil in 05 Anthracite and Metallic Rose, which has a shimmery pinky peach colour on one end and a smokey grey on the other. I can't wait to try it out. The peach shade is definitely something different for me but it works pretty well with the grey. I kind of wish I'd picked up a couple of other colours too!

Kiko haul

kiko haul

I was also in the market for a nail file as I find myself needing one more often but weirdly never having one. It's one of those products that you just expect to have knocking around somewhere. I know I get sent free nail files in random parcels so I don't know where they have got to so I picked up the purple glass nail file, which was only £2.50! I need to make sure I don't loose it!

I also wanted to get my hands on a couple of polishes from the Candy Nails range, which I've been seeing absolutely everywhere recently, and I knew I had to snap it up quick as it's another limited edition range. After much deliberation I opted for one of the gorgeous pastel Frozen Smoothies polishes in 013 Glossy Doughnut (brilliant name!) and the super sparkly Sugar Sparkles polish in 31 Berry Delight, which is absolutely gorgeous. I think they both look absolutely lovely together, very kitsch.
Kiko haul

At the checkout I also fell for the till operators upselling skills and picked up a Pump It Up Volume & Curl mascara as they were £5 off. The brush has a hollowed middle between the two bobbles, apparently for better distribution of the mascara. I'm not too sure it's going to be my kind of thing but thought I'd give it a try!

I'll try and report back soon on how I found most of these products. The nail polishes will definitely be featuring in an upcoming Manicure Monday post so keep an eye out for those!

Have you picked anything up for Kiko recently? Let me know in the comments.
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4 May 2016

Vita Coco Coconut Oil for the beauty and kitchen cupboard

Vita Coco Coconut Oil
Vita Coco Coconut Oil

Not often is there a beauty product that can be used in the kitchen as well. Coconut Oil is by no means a new product but it's become incresingly popular recently, being loved by the health concious, beauty bloggers and foodies!

The Vita Coco pots of coconut oil are cold-pressed and popped in their pots. When cold the coconut oil hardens, a bit like lard/butter but still retains its coconutty smell. I personally think it smells of the 'NICE' biscuits you can buy, delish!

I was recently sent a little pack of Vita Coco Coconut Oil to try for myself and so far I'm pretty impressed with the amount of things it can be used for.

In the kitchen...
Coconut Oil can be used in place of fat or oil in most recipes. My Lean in 15 Cook Book has a lot of recipes that incorporate coconut oil and it's great to cook with as it melts so easily, but it should be used in moderation as it's pretty high in saturated fats. It's perfect for vegetarians and vegans too and is 100% organic and 100% raw.

I recently gave the Lean in 15 Tuna and Courgette Fritters recipe a try, which was SO simple. The mix consists of tuna, grated courgette, onion, peppers, egg and flour, which I simply popped into the pan and sizzled it slowly in the coconut oil. The oil melts almost instantly and gives a lovely coconutty smell when cooking.

I cooked the fritters using the coconut oil and had to let them rest on kitchen roll just to soak up any excess oil. There wasn't a lot of excess oil when we reheated them for dinner, which was great, but there was a slight coconutty taste to them. It wasn't too overpowering and even my boyfriend, who doesn't like eating coconut, wasn't too bothered by it. The fritters were actually really yummy and I was super impressed with the coconut oil, it was a really nice change from using normal oil.

According to Vita Coco is also works a treat in cakes, stir frys, bread, biscuits and even added to smoothies. Basically if your recipe mentions needing oil you can use coconut oil as an alternative.

Lean in 15 Tuna and Courgette Fritters
Vita Coco Coconut Oil

Vita Coco Coconut Oil

In your beauty regime...
Something I'm a bit more familiar with than cooking is beauty and coconut oil has SO many uses when it comes to your beauty regime. I've been using it on dry skin on my elbows, on dry patches of skin to keep it well moisturised and even on my cuticles. You can use it round your cuticles when painting your nails to help easily remove any smudges you might make.

It can also be used as a lip balm, cleanser, hand cream, make-up remover and even a hair mask. Why not add some lemon and sugar to create your own scrub, or use it as a leave-in conditioner, a shaving cream or add baking soda to create a whitening toothpaste or even use it to combat bad breath by 'oil pulling'.

It's become quite obvious to me that every household needs coconut oil in either its beauty cupboard or its kitchen cupboard. The oil is best used in its hardened form for anything beauty-wise but can be heated really easily for all things cooking. I'm super impressed by its many uses and I've got a little pot of the good stuff in my bathroom and one in my kitchen too.

The fab people over at Vita Coco have put together The complete life guide to coconut oil to help you on your way to using coconut oil in your daily life.

*This post contains PR samples.
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1 May 2016

Five good things this week #6

Kiko Milano nail polish

Exercise
I feel like this week I've really been cracking on with the exercising! I know I won't put most people to shame but I'm rather proud to have gone on my spin bike on Saturday and Sunday, followed by Yoga on Monday, then more spinning on Wednesday and Friday! My sister bought the same bike as me and then on her first ever time using it she completely put me to shame with her hour long work out and 800 calories burnt. Eurgh. I am working myself up slowly having started at 20 minutes then 30 and I'm planning to crank it up to 40 mins and so on.

I'm also planning to get back into smoothies again and have got myself a couple of new cook books so I can cook some nice meals instead of eating too much takeaway!

Bath shopping spree
Yesterday Vince and I had such a nice day out in Bath! I've been before but not for a proper day of shopping and we really made the most of it! I didn't buy too much, just a few bits in Kiko (haul coming soon!), nail polish from Topshop (to feature in a Manicure Monday post soon!), some jeans in Primark and a new jacket from New Look.

It was fab to be able to go into a Kiko store as it's a brand I really love but I don't have a store near me, also you have to spend a minimum of £25 on the website to be able to get a delivery, which is just not on!

I was planning where to go for lunch and put a tweet out asking if anyone had any recommendations. Burger & Lobster was one and when I asked my grandad what he recommended, he said the same so Burger & Lobster it was and it was so, so good! We couldn't decide between burger or lobster so we had the combo which is a burger and half a lobster each, plus salad and chips. It was delish, although a tad expensive!

Burger & Lobster

Exciting blog opportunities - food review
Talking of food I had a really exciting blog opportunity come through this week and it was an invitation to try out Prezzo's new summer menu. It might not seem like much to most bloggers who get pretty much everything they lay their hands on for free but this is the first time I've ever been invited to review a restaurant. Vince and I are really looking forward to it! We're going on Wednesday after work so am going to have to get some food photography practice in before then.

Growing my own!
Today my Mum and I are off to the garden centre to get some bits and pieces to enable us to grow tomatoes! I keep meaning to grow more in the garden but as I don't have any beds or planting space I need to get myself some pots and compost ready for planting. I'm also going to get some runner bean plants/seeds so I can grow those as well! I just hope the bad weather stays away, can you believe it's been snowing this week and IT IS MAY?! What is going on?

Bank Holiday Weekend ahead
Technically this is part of a new week but tomorrow is Bank Holiday Monday so I have an extra day off, yipee! I'm not really sure how I'm going to spend it, hopefully getting some blog photos taken. I really want to sort out my blogging 'room,' which is actually our spare room but has also become a bit of a dumping ground for all my blog props and products. It really needs a good sort out.

How has your week been? What have you got planned for the coming week? Let me know in the comments.
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