Sunday, 31 March 2013

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter everyone! I hope you all have a lovely Easter Sunday eating Easter Eggs and relaxing (hopefully indoors under a pile of blankets with a Starbucks Via, as I am doing)!

Some of my finds from this years Egg Hunt in Covent Garden
What is your favourite egg?

I love the Beatles egg (above), Burford Browns (for poaching) and a Hotel Chocolate dark ostrich egg would be nice after my Lent chocolate ban!

Saturday, 30 March 2013

DHC Skincare Haul

Maybe its due to the never-ending winter we've been having but I've been feeling in need of some new skincare lately. I still love the Avene products that I've used for the past couple of years but its always good to chance things up a bit. I made a sneaky order with DHC and it would have been rude not to spend £50 to get the free delivery, despite the fact that my wallet is feeling pretty light at the moment after a couple of splurge purchases! This is what I bought:

This is my third purchase of the Deep Cleansing Oil. It's such a simple product but one that I really, really love. It easily removes all my make-up and leaves my skin feeling super soft and clean. I always follow this with another cleanser - double cleansing makes such a difference to my skin, I really notice if I'm too lazy to do it for a couple of days.

The Acerola Lotion is a new product for me. I'm still not a massive convert to toners but this one sounded like it'd be great for my skintype so I'm looking forward to using it.

The Coenzyme Q10 Neck Cream is another new product for me. I've never used a neck cream before but at the grand old age of 25, now is probably the time to start! This product is featured in Harvey Nicholl's "Beauty Mart" which I'd definitely recommend a visit too - it's a selection of cult beauty products from around the world so I'm hoping for good things with this cream.

The Washing Powder is another old favourite. It's a fun product to use as it really does look like washing powder that you'd use to do laundry with. When mixed with water it transforms into a foamy facewash - great for using after the Deep Cleansing Oil. It doesn't dry my skin out and the small bottle will be great for when I go travelling - no risk of it leaking all over my clothes!

I also got a selection of samples with my order. It's always good to try samples when products are expensive - these look like they'll give me a few applications to see if I like the products. The mini soaps should be enough for a weekend away.
Have you tried any DHC products? What are your current skincare favourites?

Friday, 22 March 2013

Treat Eats: The Wolseley

Since having lunch at The Wolseley last year, I have been looking for an excuse to go back. The restaurant is next to the Ritz on Piccadilly in what used to be a car show-room. Last Sunday, my parents and I visited as a few special occasions had passed with us all being too busy to properly acknowledge them.

I opted for the hamburger with a side of pommes frites. The Wolseley's menu is a mix of British classics and European bistro-style food, there's a lot of choice and different daily specials to choose from. My parents had the classic Sunday roast which they said was very good (and which almost everyone else in the restaurant appeared to be having too).

I asked for my burger medium-rare and it came perfectly cooked in a brioche bun. I have given up bread for Lent so cannot comment on what the bun was like! I did like how simple the burger was - no cheese or fancy sauces, just a simple salad and tomato relish on the side to accompany it if you wished. I very rarely eat chips but a bunless burger alone does not a special occasion lunch make! These were crisp and super-skinny, just how I like them to be.

For dessert, I paid a visit to the "cake table" to make my choice. If you eat in The Wolseley or The Delauney (The Wolseley's sister restaurant) I'd definitely recommend taking a look at the cake table before making your choice. I opted for the apple and blackcurrent kuchen which came in a very generous slice. This was a great choice - the fruit made it a refreshing end to the meal but it was still satisfyingly cake-y. I'd also recommend the apple and poppy seed cake and the Sachertorte from previous visits.

In a bite: Classic food and great service in a really lovely setting. On both visits I have dined amongst some famous faces!

Price: Not as pricey as you might think - obviously you are partly paying for the name and location but the bill for three people without wine was around £100 which isn't extortionate for a special occasion.

Return: Definitely! I want to try the afternoon tea next and the decor and atmosphere would keep me going back.

Waist-line friendly:  There's a lot of choice on the menu so it definitely could be. Although if it's a special occasion then please don't skip the cake table! There are not many veggie options on the main menu but according to the website there is a special vegetarian menu so it might be worth calling ahead if you have veggie diners with you.

Have you been to The Wolseley?

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Insta-Updates: Nails and Noodles

This week has involved:

 1 & 2. Dinner at Wagamama. I love the yasai yaki soba - so good. I don't usually get desserts in Wags but couldn't resist the sound of the apple gyoza and they were a good choice, think a nicer, less deep fried version of the McDonald's apple pie.

3. I had a little nail varnish splurge and picked up this Barry M textured polish which matched my dress perfectly. The textured finish freaked me out at first but it really grew on me and it lasted five days without chipping.

4.  The Light Show at the Hayward Gallery - a cultural start to my Friday night. This exhibition was really good although a couple of the exhibits did make me feel a bit sick!

5 & 6. Haircut - during and after. I am trying to grow my hair but after having not had a haircut since November it was long overdue. I went to Concrete on Drury Lane which I'd recommend, its not too pricey for central London and the staff are really friendly and actually listen to what you want rather than just doing their own thing!

7. Potsu at Itsu. Still on the Lent bread ban but this was so much better than a sandwich anyway.

8. Barry M Gelly Nail Paint in Satsuma - I love this shade, it'll be even better with a tan in the summer if we ever get one!

9 & 10. Red velvet cake and date and walnut cake at Drink, Shop & Do. My friends and I popped in for tea and cake. The red velvet cake probably would have been enough for three of us to share, the slice was enormous!

11. Quick OOTD: Primark skater dress, Whistles fur collar cardigan.

12.  St Patrick's Day Parade - my parents and I watched the parade on our way to lunch on Sunday, the streets were packed despite it feeling like December outside!


Sunday, 17 March 2013

Working Wardrobe 2.0

Ignoring the fact that it snowed this week, my working wardrobe has been in need of a "spring clean" which only means one thing: a new dress.

Dress: M&S; Shoes: Christian Louboutin

I had £30 on my M&S gift card still to spend so picked up this snakeskin print dress and only had to pay £9.50. I love the tulip skirt and anything nipped in at the waist seems to suit me so it was an obvious choice for my gift card spending. I don't think it looks very "M&S" but its appropriate for the office while being nice enough to wear out after work, too. Coming over all sensible, I do like how it is machine washable - I'd rather not spend my time and money on taking things to the dry cleaners if I can help it!

And yes, I'm wearing my new shoes here but I didn't actually wear them out of my flat! I probably will have ruined my wooden floor with heel marks before I actually wear them in the outside world. If it stops snowing/raining then that would be a step in the right direction.

Where do you got for work wear staples?

Friday, 15 March 2013

Red Soles

Keeping it short and sweet today. 
Simple Pump 100.
Now I just need somewhere to wear them.


Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Insta-Updates: "Essentials"

Some of my "essentials" this month, via Instagram:

1. Sister Jane store launch in Notting Hill, lots of pretty clothes but few photographs taken due to hands being full with coat and a Diet Coke.

2. GBK after Sister Jane - loved the monkey nuts! I've given up bread and chocolate for Lent so a burger would have been a bit pointless but I will have to go back after Easter Sunday as I've not had one before.

3. Friday treat of Glamour and reduced M&S sushi.

4. Oh, these? Just some new shoes that I bought. No big deal.

5. Starbucks sent me a voucher for a free drink, obviously got a venti size although I really should not be given that much caffeine at once.

6. Chirashi sushi in Wasabi, this was so good. Not being able to have bread means more sushi which is fine by me (although sandwiches are far cheaper).

7. V&A Light from the Middle East photography exhibition. This exhibition was free (good job after being bankrupted by shoes and sushi) and really interesting.

8. Goats' cheese calzone for dinner, following a lot of indecision over whether pizza counts as bread or not. I obviously decided that it didn't.

9. Benefit Hello Flawless foundation sample. I don't wear foundation but would like to invest in some for special occasions. I tried this at the Benefit counter and really liked it, it feels very light on and doesn't make me look orange.

10. Brown rice sushi in Wholefoods. I think the brown rice makes it even better than regular sushi.

11. Boots purchases (wallet is now crying). I got the No 7 Hot Cloth cleanser with a £5 off voucher. The rest are not really necessary - John Frieda Sheer Blonde Go Lighter shampoo to try out, Gold collagen drink because I read about it in the Sunday Times' Style and two Barry M nail polishes.

12. Finally exchanged Secret Santa gifts with the Dream Team! Sophie got me a Rimmel Apocalips which I've wanted to try for ages and a bar of Galaxy which has been hidden until after Lent.

13. Bibim Bap at Nara for Michelle's birthday.

14. A lot of Bioderma from Hannah's trip to Paris.

What are your "essential" purchases?

Sunday, 10 March 2013

What's On My Bedside Table?

I've seen a few of these posts lately so thought I'd do one. And, besides, I knew you were all wondering.

Bedside table (Ikea), Bedside Lamp (Argos). Oh the glamour.

Most of my beauty products are in my bathroom or on my coffee table (I live alone so this doesn't annoy anyone). I keep a few essentials on my bedside table for pre-bed application. I've used an eye cream since I was fourteen and first started getting paranoid about wrinkles due to reading fashion magazines aimed at women ten years older than me. The No 7 Perfect and Protect is almost finished so I'm looking forward to trying something new soon. The Garnier eye roll-on is used only on mornings when I haven't had enough sleep (so actually quite often), I don't think it makes a huge difference but it does feel nice and cooling. The handcream lives on my bedside table too as before bed is the only time I can use handcream without turning my iPhone screen into a smeary mess.

I also have my SkinCeuticals Hydrating B5 moisturiser which I use one drop of every night. This cost about £65 but its amazing and feels so light on my skin, I like to let my skin "breathe" during the night and I don't like the idea of using heavy night creams so this is perfect. I've been feeling a bit run-down lately so having the vitamin C here means that I actually remember to take it.

I am supposed to have given up buying magazines but couldn't resist the latest issue of Glamour with the free shampoo. I've been flicking through this at bedtime but it wasn't until I took this photo that I realised how awful January Jones' outfit is. I mean, seriously, "womens' magazines" may have instilled wrinkle paranoia and a fear of never finding "my man" but they're never going to convince me that this is something that I (or anyone else, I hope) would want to wear.

Finally, my Kindle and my makeshift Kindle case which is actually a vintage handbag that just happens to be Kindle-sized and my Firmoo glasses for reading said Kindle and magazine.

What is on your bedside table?

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Yumi Dress, Yummy Shoes

This was actually a sneaky January sales purchase but I wanted to wait to wear it until the weather was nice enough not to have to cover it up with a million layers.
Dress: Yumi (reduced from £60 to £25), Boots: H&M, Ring: YSL
I wore this to go Louboutin shopping at the weekend (results of which will feature in a future post). I love the back detail of this dress, its almost nicer than the front. I decided to make a bit of effort with my hair for a change and dug out my Remington conical wand, these curls took about five minutes so I should probably make an effort more often. I really like orange at the moment. It feels like a bright, happy colour which is much needed after not seeing sunlight for about 12883 weeks.

This dress and I made our way to Knightsbridge, after looking in Harrods and Harvey Nicks and having no success (why was the universe making spending £375 on a pair of shoes so difficult?) I ended up purchasing them from the Louboutin shop on Motcomb Street. The customer service was great and they had all the pairs that I wanted to try in stock. After the shoe purchase was made, the rest of the day was spent strictly window shopping in Knightsbridge and happily swinging my Louboutin carrier bag from my arm. Shoe tale to be continued...

What colour makes you happy?

Sunday, 3 March 2013

February Empties (and a re-style)

Slightly belatedly, here are my February empties. LilyLipstick has also had a bit of a re-style. As much as I loved how the dynamic views looked, a lot of readers were unable to comment on the posts and I didn't like how I couldn't scroll down through the entire blog so back to the standard Blogger template it is.

1. Soap and Glory The Scrub of Your Life - I've had this in full sized in the past and its amazing. This little tube came with my on holiday and then rather quickly got used up upon my return. It had the standard Soap and Glory fragrance and is satisfyingly "scrubby" - a lot of body scrubs just don't feel grainy enough for me but this one is perfect.

2. Yves Rocher Vanilla Perfume - I love vanilla-y smells, especially in the winter. This little bottle was only €5 and while its not the longest-lasting fragrance it smells lovely and is perfect for keeping in my handbag and for gym days when I don't want to carry my giant Marc Jacobs Dot around with me.

3. Mandara Spa Citrus Spice Foam Bath - I got this in a giftset at the Vitality Show almost a year ago. The bottle is huge so its lasted forever. This smelled good and foamed up nicely, as bubble baths should although there was nothing particularly amazing about it.

4. Nivea Black & White Deodorant - I always seem to have this in my empties. Does the job and doesn't ruin my clothes.

5. Avene Cleanance Soapless Gel Cleanser - my holy grail facewash. This is so gentle on my skin but leaves it feeling really clean and fresh. It helps stop my skin breaking out but doesn't leave it dry and is fragrance free. I used to use this twice daily when my skin was oilier, these days I use it when my skin feels a bit grimy or if I've not had time to do my full evening skincare routine I'll use it the next morning.

6. Avene Gentle Gel Cleanser - a mini travel size of another Avene product that I love. This is perfect for when my skin is feeling a bit drier. Again, its fragrance-free and really gentle but quickly removes a full face of make-up and leaves my skin feeling clean and soft.

7. Sephora Caramel Shower Gel - I bought this single use shower gel on my last trip to France. This smells amazing, I used it as a bubble bath and it felt more like something I should be pouring on top of a coffee rather than bathing in.

8. Compagnie de Provence Incense Lavande Perfume - another brand I stocked up on in France was Compagnie de Provence, I love their giant soaps and candles. I got given a little sample of their Incense Lavande perfume in their store. This was really nice, a bit more of a grown-up scent than I am use to (I definitely gravitate towards sweeter, teenage fragrances still) but a nice change and not at all like the lavender smell that I associate with grannies!

9. Tierry Mulger Angel and Womanity Showergels - these were in my John Lewis goodie bag from ages ago. Both of these smelled amazing and were great for popping in my gym bag.

10. L'Oreal Superliner in Carbon Gloss - this must be my fifth one of these. I've worn liquid eyeliner everyday for the past three years and this one is so easy to apply, never flakes off and is perfectly black. In the past I've contemplated trying more expensive brands but when you can't find fault in something that costs around £7 there's really no point changing.

11. DHC Deep Cleansing Oil - another holy grail skincare product. I've been using this for a few years now and love it. This is the only face oil I've used but I don't really feel the need to try any others, this suits my skin and is a lot more affordable than other cleansing oils (it's currently on sale for £18 until the end of April here). This bottle lasted me ages as I only apply one pump of it to a cotton pad, smooth it over my skin and then add a tiny bit of water and lather it off.

12. Bare Minerals Flawless Definition Mascara - this lasted a really long time. I usually go through mascaras pretty quickly so this one was quite impressive in not drying out after two months. The brush gave nice separated lashes and no clumps. It wasn't quite as volumising as I like but for an easy to apply daytime mascara this was great.

What products have you used up this month?
© Lillian Zahra | All rights reserved.
Blog Design Handcrafted by pipdig