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Wednesday, 13 March 2019

MY NEW BaByliss HAIRDRYER

For most of us, a hairdryer is an essential tool. 

Recently, my old hairdryer had been showing some signs that it might be on the blink.  I shampooed my hair and I was just beginning my blowdry, when my hairdryer packed up completely.  Luckily, I had a small travel hairdryer in the drawer - not a particularly good one, but a hairdryer at least - and I used that to continue.  I had almost completed my blowdry when - guess what? - that packed up too! Well, it was very old.

It was time to go out and buy a new hairdryer.  As I had been really pleased with my BaByliss straightener, I decided to try a BaByliss hairdryer.  I had lots of points on my Boots Advantage Card to redeem, so I went to Boots the Chemists to look at their selection of hairdryers.  I chose the BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer, intending to use it all the time, for both home and travel.  


BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer

For a travel hairdryer, this is quite powerful - 2000 w.  Compact and lightweight, it has a folding handle and a dual voltage converter (225v or 240v).  There are 2 heat/speed settings  and it comes with a concentrator nozzle for styling. Guarantee: 3 years.


BaByllis Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer Folded

You might wonder why I have bought a travel dryer for general use.  As my hair is medium long and not that thick, it dries quickly.  Certainly a 2000w hairdryer is powerful and fast-drying enough for me.  Also, as I am a very small person, I do prefer to use lightweight, compact tools if possible.  When I dried my hair as usual, layer by layer for a smooth effect, I was delighted with my BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer.  It ticked all the boxes for me!

Whilst I realize that some people, especially those with long and/or thick hair, would want a more powerful hairdryer for normal use, I would certainly recommend this one as an excellent travel hairdryer.

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

KEY PIECES FROM MY WARDROBE - SPRING 2019

Put it down to austerity, the rising cost of bills and the uncertainty of Brexit, but many of us have been spending less on new clothes recently.  Phrases like "shopping my wardrobe" keep cropping up. 

When "fast fashion" arrived, we could buy trendy clothes and accessories at very low prices.  Maybe they were not so good at the start but they improved in both quality and design until they really became "cheap chic".  Clothes were so inexpensive that it was tempting to buy lots of pieces each season.  Our wardrobes expanded!

I began 2019 by going through my wardrobe and taking out items fit for the recycling bag.  A collection of beautiful pieces remained. They were still in wearable condition and they hadn't outlived their fashion life either.  I resolved to look in my wardrobe first before buying anything new for Spring.  

I looked at my favourite designers' Spring/Summer 2019 collections.  The "gender-fluid" trend was in evidence at SAINT LAURENT (Helmut Newton inspired masculine-feminine tailored pieces) and CELINE (smoking jackets).  From my wardrobe:-
  • A black tailored jacket
  • A black tuxedo 

I bought both jackets in the above photos some years ago at H&M.  I will wear them with my black jeans, sometimes with pointed-toe kitten heel pumps, sometimes with sneakers.  

The "Paris La Nuit" inspired collection at CELINE also featured pretty, frilled little dresses and tops.  In this mood, from my wardrobe:-
  • a black polka dot blouse in a sheer material:

  • a black silky, frilled camisole top:

Both these pieces were also bought some years ago at H&M.   I could wear them with a little black skirt (I've two of them in my wardrobe!) or just with my favourite jeans (black or dark blue denim).

Well I've made a start and I will certainly look in my wardrobe first before buying anything new this Spring/Summer!

Thursday, 14 February 2019

YVES SAINT LAURENT VOLUPTÉ PLUMP-IN-COLOUR LIPSTICK

As the first day of Spring is only 5 weeks away now and it is beginning to feel milder out, I felt it was the right time to buy a new lipstick, in readiness for the new season! 

I wanted a bright pink or fuchsia and discovered that YVES SAINT LAURENT had some beautiful shades and textures.  My favourites were: 

ROUGE VOLUPTÉ SHINE (a hydrating "Oil-In-Stick" shiny lipstick) in Rose Saint Germain (49), a bright pink, and Fuchsia in Rage (19), a dark, purple/blue toned fuchsia

and

VOLUPTÉ PLUMP-IN-COLOUR in Dazzling Fuchsia (02), a bright fuchsia - as in the photograph below.

YSL VOLUPTÉ PLUMP-IN-COLOUR 02 Dazzling Fuchsia

VOLUPTÉ PLUMP-IN-COLOUR contains coconut and pomegranate oil and is similar to  ROUGE VOLUPTÉ SHINE in that it is a moisturising, shiny lipstick.  It also has a black heart core which contains glycols to boost circulation and peppermint extract, designed to give a plumped effect.

I tried out the three lipsticks and decided to buy the VOLUPTÉ PLUMP-IN-COLOUR in Dazzling Fuchsia (02).  I thought that the colour was exactly what I wanted and I felt that the texture did have both a moisturising and plumping effect.

Contained in a glamorous case - silver with a gold and pink band with YSL initials around the middle, this beautiful lipstick actually made an excellent Valentine's week present from me to me! 

What next? Currently busy looking at Spring/Summer 2019 collections from my favourite designers to decide my fashion mood for Spring, I intend to "shop my wardrobe" for some key pieces before going on any shopping sprees! More about this to come in my next post.


Wednesday, 30 January 2019

LACE TRIMMED LINGERIE


A vest is always an essential piece in my wardrobe to wear as a base layer, especially under short/cropped jumpers and sweatshirts and sheer tops.  It can be a plain, close-fitting sporty style or sometimes I like to wear a more luxurious and pretty camisole.  As I needed a couple of new vests, I was looking around in H&M and found this lovely black camisole and shorts set in their lingerie section. H&M actually sell the set as pyjamas. 




Made in a polyester soft satin material, the camisole is trimmed with lace at the top and the matching shorts have lace insets at the sides.  I like the adjustable shoulder straps on the camisole.   I bought the set to sometimes wear as pyjamas but I also intend to use the camisole as a layer in the daytime.

Lingerie - 18th Century Lingerie - was the influence for the beautiful dresses in the recent CHANEL Haute Couture Spring/Summer show in Paris.  Karl Lagerfeld presented his collection at the Grand Palais against a background  that resembled an Italian Garden.  Flowers were an important feature and hand-painted ceramic flowers were attached to dresses.  Little pointed-toe, sling-back ankle boots with high, thin heels were worn with all the collection.  The models wore their hair swept up in  very high hairstyles which echoed the shape of 18th Century wigs.  The beauty look was dramatic - dark navy blue eye makeup and red lips against a porcelain complexion.  CHANEL's Les 9 Ombres Edition No. 2 Quintessence and Stylo Ombre et Contour in 02 Bleu Nuit were used for the eyes.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

A NEW SEASON

It's really cold out now and Spring seems a long way off.  Although it might seem rather soon to be thinking about the new season's fashion and makeup, Karl Lagerfeld  presented his CHANEL Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2019 Collection in Paris yesterday and the new CHANEL Spring makeup comes out in the shops this week.  For me, these events are my wake-up call to begin planning (and perhaps buying a few new things) for Spring.

My first "pre-Spring" buys are often sports/athleisure pieces.  There are two good reasons for this.  One is that they can be worn all the year round and layered, or unlayered, according to the weather.  The other is simply that easy sports/athleisure style is my daily "work uniform" and by now it's all getting a bit jaded and some pieces are worn out.  Just a couple of new season's pieces and some new trainers can make all the difference!



The short black sweatshirt in the photo above is from H&M's Divided section.  It is made in a lightweight 60% Cotton, 40% Polyester fabric with ribbing around the round neckline, cuffs and hem.

I fell for the Primark backpack as soon as I saw it! Made in a lightweight black polyester material, it will be an easy to carry workbag.  The main compartment is spacious for larger items, whilst it will be easy to find smaller items in the two zip-up front pockets.  The lower front pocket is finished with an attractive chevron-patterned quilting.

Then I saw this pack of pony tail bands in H&M.  I thought instantly that the colours and the transparency of the bands were just right for Spring.  I think they can be worn as bracelets too, with sporty, casual pieces.




That's my first new season's shop over! WHAT NEXT?  I shall be looking at lingerie, new trainers and new "limited edition" Spring Makeup.

Thursday, 10 January 2019

COLD WEATHER CHIC

Over a week into January - a belated HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!

It's been a cold start to 2019 and I was pleased to wear my beanie with the faux fur pompom from Primark, bought at the beginning of the season.

From my existing wardrobe, I found some beautiful winter warmers that I bought last winter:  
Black Suede Sock Boots trimmed with small studs from Topshop, a Black Scarf with fringes and black mittens with faux fur pompoms, both from H&M.


It was so nice to receive H&M gift cards at Christmas from the family and I have already spent some of it on a couple of warm things.  Living in a flat with polished wooden floors, slippers are an essential for me and I bought these soft grey, cable-knit slippers trimmed with a bow and pompom and lined with a lighter grey faux fur. The soft soles have anti-slip protectors. It will be lovely to slip my feet into them on a cold morning! 

Amongst the "new arrivals" for the new season in H&M's Divided range, I found this warm, soft-knit black jumper, with ribbing around the round neck, cuffs and hem.  The shape is fashionably short.

Cold weather can make skin red and sensitive.  You may have read my post "La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Daily Moisturiser" back in the summer, when I reviewed my sample of this product.  If not, you might like to read it, so please just click on the link below:-

http://www.petite-panache.com/2018/07/la-roche-posay-toleriane-ultra-daily.html

I mentioned that I had a spare little sample tube and that I would save it for the winter.  La Roche-Posay claim that it helps to reduce redness very quickly and I thought that I would try it out when my face was affected by cold, wintry weather.


Yes, it did calm the redness down really fast and soothed away any feeling of soreness.  I think this is a very soothing moisturiser and well worth buying.  Although I have used the same excellent moisturiser for years, I am thinking of buying Toleriane Ultra as an additional treatment when needed.

Now I am going to warm up with a lovely hot drink - a cup of Twinings Blackcurrant and Blueberry tea!




COMMENT: I thought Lady Gaga looked wonderful at the Golden Globes awards recently in a blue Valentino Couture dress, blue tinted hair and diamond necklace from Tiffany.


Wednesday, 12 December 2018

CHANEL "COLLECTION LIBRE" MAKEUP COLLECTION

CHANEL's "COLLECTION LIBRE", their latest makeup collection, is perfect for dark December and the festive season. The theme is opulent and golden with metallic textures and rich reds. The Lion, Coco Chanel's emblem and astrological sign, is a feature of the collection and is embossed on new luminous powders - LE LION DE CHANEL and 4 new limited edition iridescent shades of OMBRE PREMIÈRE.

LE LION DE CHANEL is a limited edition golden Face Highlighting Powder with a metallic sheen, to use on areas that catch the light.

OMBRE PREMIÈRE, Longwear Powder Eyeshadow comes in 4 new shades:

Electrum Lamé 905 (gold)
Vert Lamé 906 (green/gold)
Cuivre Lamé 907 (copper/gold)
Noir Lamé 908 (metallic black) 

I bought Vert Lamé, an olive green with a gold shimmer and I really love the colour on me.  It comes in the little black CHANEL mirrored compact with a foam applicator and a small brush to blend it with.  As I usually find with CHANEL eyeshadows, it's easy to apply and long lasting.  For a more intensified look, CHANEL suggest mixing, matching and layering these new metallic shades.

CHANEL OMBRE PREMIÈRE Vert Lamé

There are also 2 new limited edition shades in ROUGE COCO GLOSS, CHANEL's shiny and moisturising lip gloss:

Liquid Bronze 808
Flaming Lips 812

I bought Flaming Lips, a beautiful metallic, shiny, glossy rich ruby red.  ROUGE COCO GLOSS is always one of my favourites, because I find it easy to apply and I like the moisturising and lightweight feel.  In this shade the texture is a little heavier than usual and the effect is more intense, but I find it perfect for this time of the year.   



CHANEL ROUGE COCO GLOSS Flaming Lips

I must add that I love the new limited edition shade of LE VERNIS Longwear Nail Colour - Opulence 917 (metallic burgundy/copper/gold). 

NEWS FROM CHANEL: Opulence and golden are definitely words that could apply to the recent CHANEL Métiers d'Art show in New York.  Inspired by Ancient Egypt, Karl Lagerfeld presented his ornate collection of clothes, jewellery and accessories in an Egyptian Temple inside the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Models wore black Cleopatra-style graphic eyeliner and the guest of honour, Pharrell Williams, appeared in a gold top with a Usekh neckline and gold trousers.

When I publish my next post, it will probably be 2019! In the meantime, a very MERRY CHRISTMAS to those who celebrate it and a HAPPY HOLIDAY SEASON to all.

Sandy

Friday, 30 November 2018

A SOFT GREEN AUTUMN JUMPER

Often, in Autumn, I buy something green - not bright green but soft green or dark forest green.  It will usually be a piece of knitwear or an eyeshadow.  Once again, I have bought
a green jumper but this time it is something different from the classic round neck or polo neck.




I found it at H&M in their Divided section.  Made in a soft Acrylic/Wool/Alpaca mix, it has a wide, ribbed v-neck at both the front and back, with the 'v' not so low at the back.

I love the neckline, which is ideal for this season's jewellery trends - either a single gold chain with a gold medallion pendant or layered little gold chain necklaces.  They don't have to be real gold and there is a good selection of these styles in the high street.  Actually, both H&M and Primark have really picked up on medallions! (I must mention my medallion earrings, which came from a Primark 6-pack of 'gold' earrings).



In my next post, coming soon - some more green and gold and some red too!


Wednesday, 21 November 2018

SAMPURE MINERALS CRUSHED MINERAL EYESHADOW


SAMPURE MINERALS Crushed Mineral Eyeshadow, winner of the "Natural Health" magazine award for Eyeshadow, was another lovely blogger's sample in my goody bag from the Allergy & Free From Show.

It comes in a nice little pot and looks like small granules (similar to my favourite instant coffee!). My sample was in Grape, a soft purple shade.

SAMPURE MINERALS Crushed Mineral Eyeshadow in Grape

SAMPURE suggest applying it with a finger or a brush. I found it easiest to pat it on to my eyelids with my finger and then blend it.  Initially, I used too much and when blended it spread so far that I looked panda-eyed! I realized that a little bit went a long way and tried again with a tiny amount.  This time I was successful and it looked really good, with a soft, smooth finish.  I found that it stayed on well too.

SAMPURE also suggest using the eyeshadow wet, to get a more intense colour or even to use it as an eyeliner.  The next day I was more ambitious and after applying the eyeshadow dry, I tried mixing a little with a damp brush and painting a line round my eyes.  I was very pleased with the result - a soft purple line in a deeper shade than the shadow.  I was delighted with Grape, which really suited me but there are 8 shades to choose from.

SAMPURE MINERALS Crushed Mineral Eyeshadow is made from natural ingredients and free from animal products, harsh chemicals or parabens. SAMPURE intend it for use by people who have sensitive skin or allergies but, as always, I would recommend checking the ingredients. It is also Halal, Vegan and Vegetarian Certified and Cruelty Free. Designed to meet so many needs, I think it is very reasonably priced at £9.50. As it happens, right now there is a SALE on SAMPURE's website and they are offering the eyeshadow at £4.75 (half price}!

For full details of this product, including ingredients and available colours, please go to SAMPURE's  website:



In my next post - a colour that I like at this time of the year.


Tuesday, 13 November 2018

ORGANIC SHOP Tropical Coconut & Shea Hair Mask - My Review

As promised, I am now writing my review of ORGANIC SHOP Tropical Coconut & Shea Hair Mask, another sample product from my Free From Show goody bag.

ORGANIC SHOP Tropical Coconut & Shea Hair Mask


ORGANIC SHOP Tropical Coconut & Shea Hair Mask is a moisturising hair mask made from ingredients of 98% natural origin and does not contain parabens or silicones.  It contains Organic Coconut ("nourishes strands, to leave hair lustrous and shiny"*) and Organic Shea ("boosts hydration to repair split ends and smooth frizz, leaving hair rejuvenated and revived"*).   I was interested in this product because sometimes after washing my hair it can be a bit unmanageable and  frizzy.

Following the directions on the tub, after shampooing my hair, I applied the mask to damp hair and massaged it in well.  I enjoyed the lovely scent of coconut and the texture of the mask felt rich and creamy.  The instructions suggested leaving it on for 2-3 minutes, or longer if a more intensive treatment was required.  I actually kept it on for 6 minutes before rinsing it off thoroughly.

After drying and styling my hair, I was delighted with the result!  My hair was smooth, shiny, manageable and it seemed to look thicker too.  ORGANIC SHOP Tropical Coconut & Shea Hair Mask certainly does what it claims to do (*see above claims).   I will most definitely be using this marvellous hair mask regularly in future. 

Now the price.  This is quite amazing!!! At only £2.50 for a large 250ml tub, this is a really inexpensive way to give hair a first-class treatment.  The tub is going to last quite a while  too because I found that I only needed to use a small amount of the mask.

You can read all the details about it (including ingredients and delivery etc) on their website:


My next post will be a review of SAMPURE MINERALS Crushed Mineral Eyeshadow