Monday, 25 November 2013

BEAUTY REVIEW: LA ROCHE POSAY EFFACLAR ASTRINGENT LOTION MICRO-EXFOLIANT



This is my go-to toner at the moment when I get a breakout. I know a lot of people who feel a toner is an unnecessary step in a skincare routine, but I have always used one as I find it refreshing after a cleanse. This toner from La Roche Posay, however, has great skin benefits too and I love it.


It contains sebum-regulating (basically ‘oil-regulating’), micro-exfoliating and purifying active ingredients that tighten and shrink pores, and prevent pore blockage (which causes breakouts). It is a great product for those of you with oily skin, to reduce the amount of sebum produced.


It’s what I reach for when spots appear, as it also contains the famous La Roche Posay Thermal Spa Water that is rich in Selenium (which soothes and calms irritated skin).


La Roche Posay Effaclar Astringent Micro-Exfoliating Lotion (200ml) is available online at The Cosmetic Practice for £14.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

COUNTRY LIVING CHRISTMAS FAIR

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I went along to the opening day of the Country Living Christmas Fair in Glasgow’s SECC today. It is on until Sunday (24th November), so if you are at a loose end this weekend you should definitely pop along. There are some fantastic ideas for Christmas interiors, amazing food produce to taste and plenty of opportunities to max your credit card out on gifts for every member of your family.


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Some stand-out exhibitors for me were Scottish organic skincare brand Skin Guru (www.theskinguru.co.uk), whose products I have been using for a while now; and the Edinburgh gourmet rock salt company Flavour Magic (www.flavourmagic.com). I picked up three different types to cook and season with- Chilli, Rosemary and Smoked (£10). There was also a great exhibitor called HornyBeasts (www.hornybeasts.co.uk) that sold a lot of stag and deer print items (my favourite this Winter). I adored their Lisa Bliss 100% silk deer head print scarves (£58).


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The fair was a lot bigger than I thought it would be, with a lot more stands than I anticipated. You could definitely spend a whole day here looking at everything properly and having a taste of all the food.


Tickets for adults, bought on the day, are £12.50, and more information can be found at www.countrylivingfair.com.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

BENEFIT COSMETICS GLASGOW BOUTIQUE LAUNCH EVENT & A BENEFIT GIVEAWAY!!!

Stay tuned until the end of this post for a fabulous Benefit Cosmetics giveaway worth £30…


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Last week I was invited to attend the opening event for Benefit Cosmetics’ new Glasgow boutique in House of Fraser. This is their first Scottish boutique, and it takes their usual retail counters to a whole different level.


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We were given a tour round all the shiny new rooms. They have partnered with Irish organic and non-toxic self-tan brand Vita Liberata and started a spray tan service. This is available for a bargain price of £20; but if you get down there asap and book an eyebrow wax (£12) you’ll get a spray tan or body wax free to celebrate the launch! I’m definitely going to be heading back soon to get a bit of a Winter glow.


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Another of my favourite additions is the new Benefit VIP counter, situated on another floor from the main boutique. Here you can book a make-up lesson, and sip in a mini bottle of Moet champagne for just £12. The first few hundred VIP bookings will take home a lip product as a gift too.


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Everywhere is so pretty- I would just love it to be my dressing room. At the launch event we enjoyed champagne and Indian food served by topless butlers, and took home a cute goodie bag. I am giving my goodie bag away here to one of my readers. It contains a full-size Corslista lipgloss (£14.50), and a full-size Creasless Cream Eyeshadow (£15.50). To enter the giveaway, just follow the Rafflecopter instructions below:


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a Rafflecopter giveaway



Laura Pearson-Smith

Sunday, 17 November 2013

BEAUTY REVIEW: BARE MINERALS READY LUMINIZER THE LOVE AFFAIR

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This is one of my favourite skin finishing products at the moment. A dusting of this on my forehead, cheekbones and nose gives my skin a candlelit glow, and a professional finish.


I usually use more pearlescent-shaded highlighters and illuminating powders; but the golden shimmer of this one gives my exceptionally pale skin a bit of healthy colour. It looks even better if I have fake tan on, so if you have a darker complexion than mine, you’ll love this even more. Pop some on a tanned decolletage for a glowing party look.


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I picked this up from Chemist Direct for £19.99.


Laura Pearson-Smith

Saturday, 16 November 2013

WHAT I'M EATING: SIMPLY FISH, GLASGOW

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Recently I was invited for a meal by Simply Fish to review them here on my blog. Simply Fish is a restaurant in Glasgow’s West End, and I took my husband for lunch there last week.

The restaurant is tucked away in an unsuspecting street, so it isn’t one I would have ordinarily stumbled upon, or gone out of my way to visit; but i’m very glad I did.

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The restaurant is modern and sleek. The food is very elegantly presented despite its relaxed atmosphere and very reasonable prices. It would be a great place for a romantic dinner, a girly lunch or a family feast. All ages would love it, and it has excellent disabled access and facilities.

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Despite it’s name, it does offer meat and vegetarian options; but we couldn’t visit and not try what they do best- the fish. It’s all fresh and delivered daily. For starters I had Salmon Terrine with Lemon & Herb Butter. It looked gorgeous when it arrived. The butter was a tad too sharp for me, and overpowered the fresh taste of the smoked salmon; but otherwise it was a generous portion and excellent value for money. I did end up eating some of my husband’s too, after getting chorizo-envy when I saw his Scallops with Chorizo & Black Olive Tapenade. I could eat chorizo till the cows come home, and here it went perfectly with the tender scallops.

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As a main course, I revisited an old favourite that I had sickened myself of many years ago when touring Belgium and France- Moules Frites. My mussels were in a really nice garlic, lemon and cream sauce. I enjoyed it; but would have liked it much more with less lemon- it was again too bitter sadly. Luckily though, all the mussels were edible- none had to be discarded due to partially closed shells. The fries were amazing and crispy- just how I like them.

The presentation award definitely goes to my husband’s Fish & Chips. Children would love this. It comes served on pretend newsprint, and the vinegar is in a little spray bottle that you ‘scoosh’ on. He assured me the fish was very fresh, tasty and in a fabulously crispy beer batter. He loved the chunky chips too- crisp on the outside and fluffy in the middle.

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I was looking forward to the dessert the most. I had the Sticky Toffee Pudding- perfectly stodgy (as it should be) with a delicious sweet caramel sauce and icecream. I also had a taste of my husbands White Chocolate & Coconut Rice Pudding. This is not a combination I would have thought of putting together; but it was heavenly. It was thick, creamy, very chocolately, with toasted coconut flakes to break up the sweetness. Perfection!

We really enjoyed our visit, and would definitely return to try some more of their fish dishes. The staff were very attentive and knowlegable about the menu options.

Laura Pearson-Smith

Thursday, 14 November 2013

MY FAVOURITE CHRISTMAS PARTY LOOK

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I’ve been trying out some Christmas party looks, and my favourite has been this one- done using the glam Benefit Cosmetics’ Matthew Williamson The Rich Is Back set (exclusive to Debenhams).




The eyeshadows are silky and shimmery. They are highly pigmented, and really ‘pop’; making it perfect for a luxurious smokey eye.

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On the browbone i’ve used Solid Gold, with Disco Dust as a highlighter. In the crease i’ve used Get Down Brown, and then under the bottom lashes i’ve used Feel So Teal. Party looks are all about statement eyes for me, so i’ve finished mine off with the fabulous They’re Real mascara.

On my cheeks i’ve used the enclosed blusher Gimme Fever, with a few dabs of the Disco Dust eyeshadow on my cheekbones as a highlighter. Finishing off with a slick of the sparkly lipgloss, i’m good to go!

The Rich Is Back set is available from Benefit Cosmetics at Debenhams for £23.85.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

WHAT I'M EATING: CHOBANI GLASGOW BLOGGER DINNER

Last week, myself and 15 other bloggers were invited by yogurt brand Chobani for dinner at The Corinthian in Glasgow.

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When we arrived, we went straight up to private dining room The Langley Room, which has great views over bustling Ingram Street. I apologise for the blue-tinged photos; but the room had strange blue lightbulbs. We were greeted with a cocktail containing Chobani, that I personally didn’t like the taste of; but it has inspired me to try and create my own Chobani yogurt cocktails.

We took our seats and chose our three courses from the menu, before the PR Amy explained the history of Chobani. It is really worth a read- link.

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I chose the Vegetarian option starter- Chobani risotto with sun-blushed tomatoes, spring onion, broad beans and Parmesan. You could taste that it had been made with something slightly sharper than butter or cream; but it was still delicious.

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For my main course I chose the rack of lamb with Chobani Dauphinoise potatoes, baby vegetables and Chobani mint sauce. The mint sauce and dauphinoise potatoes were so good- i’m definitely going to make the potatoes this way from now on and save myself hundreds of calories.

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My dessert of Chobani vanilla and honey cheesecake with raspberry syrup was perfection. It was light and creamy, and you would never know that it wasn’t packed with fat-laden cream cheese. I’m going to attempt to make a Chobabi Passionfruit cheesecake this week; so keep an eye on my Instagram to see how I get on.

Let me know if you’ve ever attempted to cook with Chobani!

Monday, 4 November 2013

THE 2013 CHRISTMAS TAG

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1. Do you prefer a real Christmas tree or synthetic?
I prefer a real one because of the smell; but rarely get one as I have a very realistic large synthetic tree. I put my tree very early also, and I don’t think a real one would last.


2. You’re in a coffee shop, it’s December, what do you pick?
Hot Chocolate, with more whipped cream than liquid.


3. Whats your favourite colour scheme for decorating the tree?
A very traditional mish-mash of colours and decorations. All my favourite ornaments are very different from each other.


4. Giving or receiving?
Anyone who says ‘giving’ is a big Christmas liar. Receiving is best by far. Who doesn’t love presents?!


5. To mince pie or not to?
Eugh! No. Anything chocolate will do me just fine.


6. What’s your traditional Sunday lunch?
HAS to be turkey. Husband challenged me on that once at the beginning of our marriage. He hasn’t tried again. Huge mounds of sage and chestnut stuffing, little sausages, lots of gravy, Wholefoods bread sauce, roast potatoes, buttery carrots. Usually some sort of seafood for starter, and a raspberry dessert of some sort.


7. Christmas day fashion?
Pyjamas and no make-up all the way. Christmas is very private for me, so why not be comfortable.


8. What’s your favourite Christmas song?
Fairytale Of New York by The Pogues


9. What’s your favourite Christmas film?
Christmas With The Kranks… America does christmas soooo much better than us.


10. Open presents before or after lunch?
Before i.e. as early as possible without getting shouted at for waking people up at an upsurd time to watch.


Photo Credit: yvestown via photopin cc

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