March Round Up

Ok, so I know I say this every month but seriously where has this month gone?! March has been ANOTHER fab month (i'm on a roll at the moment). I've had a lovely month what with my birthday and winning a paid work placement at McCan Erickson andddd just general March loveliness with the warmer weather and all the pretty flowers popping out.

Maybelline Browdrama Sculpting Brow Mascara

When I first brought Maybelline Browdrama some time last year I used it once and full on hated it. I thought it was the worst thing i'd brought and spent my money on but after returning to it a few weeks ago I can't get enough. I think my issue with it when I first brought it was it wasn't heavy enough (I was a bit of a fan of the good old scouse brow) but now that has been well and truly tamed, thankfully. These days I much more prefer natural bushy looking brow so the sculpting gel is perfect for achieving this look.

Technic High Lights VS Benefit High Beam



I was in Bodycare the other day picking up the usual bits and bobs and came across the make up section. It kind of reminded me of what my thirteen year old self would have picked up, it all looked a bit cheap and nasty, I mean come on what quality bronzer is going to be £1?! But what did stand out to me was Technic high lights. I couldn't believe the likeness to my much loved Benefit High Beam and for £1.99 I had to give it a whirl.

Four Things I Love From This Week


The four things I've loved this week are….

Absolutely love rediscovering jewellery you once loved but have kind of forgotten about
Essie Mint Candy Apple nails are so pretty, see what other shades I got here
My face of the day at the moment, this selection looks so fresh and spring together 
Had an amazing week winning in the PR category at the B-hive creative competition and winning four weeks paid placement at McCann Erickson, wowee! 

What have your favourite things from this week been? Follow me on instagram here xx 

Grown Up Jelly


 I've been a bit poorly sick this week so made some raspberry jelly which inspired me to make some grown up jelly. So instead of just plain jelly, I made raspberry and vodka jelly, so good! So easy to make and so delicious. Give it a go and let me know how you get on.  


Raspberry and Vodka Jelly
Ingredients
500g frozen raspberries
1.5l water 
335g caster sugar 
4 tablespoons rose syrup
4 tablespoons rose water
60ml vodka
Gelatine Sheets or Powder (see gelatine packet for appropriate amount for a l.5 litres of liquid)


Directions

  1. Place raspberries in a pot with water and bring to boiling point.
  2. Add sugar and simmer for further 5 mins until sugar has dissolved and raspberries have broken down.
  3. Add rose water and rose syrup.
  4. Allow to cool for a while and then strain syrup to remove raspberry seeds then add the vodka and gelatine. Stir until the gelatine has dissolved.
  5. Pour in desired molds or glass dish. Add fresh raspberries if you wish then put in fridge for a few hours until set.

Clarins Blue Orchid Face Treatment Oil



I've read so many rave reviews about facial oils but I was a bit sceptical about using them. Why would I want to put oil on top of my spot prone congested skin? But after a little research I discovered facial oils can actually benefit spot prone oily skin by balancing the amount of oil your skin is producing. Meaning your skin will reduce the amount of sebum it produces because facial oils keep it hydrated. I think. It was something like that anyway, but hey you do learn something new everyday.

So for my first facial oil investment I decided to opt for Clarins blue orchid face treatment oil and boy am I glad I invested. I chose it mainly because of the glowing reviews and because it is 100% plant extracts so i'm not putting any nasties on my skin. I've worked this into my night time skin care routine with applying it just before bed time every other night. Due to its powerful qualities, I think it might be a bit to heavy and rich to use every night but I guess if I was having a really dry nasty skin week I might do this. 

Firstly I just love the packaging, the glass bottle with the dropper applicator is cute and practical. The  facial oil itself has made a massive difference to the appearance of my skin. It was toned and smoothed it and kept it really hydrated and glowy even through these cold months. It also makes make up appear much more smooth on the skin. It smells amazing like so so good, I think it even makes me fall asleep quicker, it's gorgeous. 

Overall Clarins blue orchid face treatment oil is a massive thumbs up from me. I will definitely be repurchasing. Have you tried it? 

Lily xx 

Essie Pastel Polishes


As I mentioned in my Spring Has Sprung post this season is all about the pastel varnish shades and I loveeee them. While having a browse in Boots I was drawn to the Essie stand and all the beautiful shades. I've never brought Essie polishes before as they are a little on the high side for drug store polishes but i'm so glad I invested these nail lacquer's are amazing.

I applied a base coat and then two coats of the shade eternal optimist (the pink one) and so far i've had it on for three days and i've had very minimal chips, impressive. The other two shades I picked up were mint candy apple and lilacism. I think all these shades are so pretty and are perfect for Spring.

What are your favourite Essie shades?

Lily xx

Four Things I Love From This Week

The four things I've loved this week are….

Spot of advertising of Lily Ann Loves in the Apple store
Pink Chanel nails with my flower ring off my bestie 
Beautiful day in Anglesey with the fam, boy and dogs for mummy's birthday 

What have your favourite things from this week been? Follow me on instagram here xx 

The Eight Hour Sleep Face

Does anyone ever have their eight hour sleep? I personally can't even remember the last time I had mine. The late nights and early starts can end up leaving your skin looking a bit drab so over time I have perfected my eight hour sleep face illusion.

Before I even apply my make up on mornings which are particularly early and my complexion is showing the signs of it I love to use my Liz Earle Brightening mask. Although it is a mask I just massage it into my face for about five minutes and then remove it with a hot muslin cloth. This product is a bit of a miracle in a tube, hello bright glowy skin!

My next saviour in a jar is my Benefit It's Potent! brightening cream. This eye cream is amazing at banishing those dark circles and 'de-puffing' your eyes. Creating a flawless base is vital to give an illusion of 'a long sleep' face. I use Chanel Le Blanc De Chanel as mentioned in my previous review (here) as it is the perfect primer to create a glowy radiant complexion.

Choosing the right foundation for a radiant eight hour sleep complexion is key, you need something fairly dewy to give you the correct radiant look. I always opt for MAC mineralize moisture foundation as it completely smooths out your complexion and keeps your skin moisturised making it looking refreshed and radiant.

A brightening concealer is vital for completing this look as it will cover up any sign of tiredness. My favourite is Illamasqua skin base lift brightening concealer. I can't recommend this enough, it covers EVERYTHING. If the capitals weren't evident enough it really is a wonder product. Finally to finish the look is to use a super brightening highlighter, I love Benefit Watt's up for this. It's so concentrated it can make the dullest complexion look bright and perky. I apply it to my cheek bones, temples and under my brows.

What are your eight hour sleep face secrets?

Lily xx

Strawberry and Cream Cupcakes

Soooo it's my birthday today, the big 20.  I now have a grown up job, as of July, and i'm 20. I feel old and i'm not very happy about it (wahhh). As it's my birthday I thought it was only fitting to make some birthday cupcakes so I made this rather wonderful creations, strawberry and cream cupcakes. These combine my two favourite things, strawberries and cake, yummy! If you'd like to try them for yourself the recipe is below and as always let me know how you get on xx


Strawberry and Cream Cupcakes
Ingredients
4-5 fresh strawberries
318g all-purpose flour 
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 salt
1 large egg
115g melted butter
200g granulated sugar
62g strawberry yoghurt
180ml milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream Topping

360ml whipping cream
43g sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
110g strawberry jam 

Directions

1.Slice stawberries and blend in a food blender until they are a chunky puree 
2. In a medium bowl mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside. 
3. In a separate bowl mix the melted butter and sugar. Then add the egg, vanilla extract, milk and yoghurt and mix until all is combined.
4. Slowly mix dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until no lumps remain. Fold in the strawberry puree.
5. Divide between the cupcake cases. Bake at 180 degrees C for 20 minutes until tops are lightly golden. 
6. While the cupcakes are baking prepare the cream topping. Whisk the cream and sugar together for about 4-5 minutes. Add the jam and whisk for a further 1 minute.
7. When the cupcakes are completely cool. Frost using the cream topping and add fresh cut strawberries for decoration.

Benefit Lollitint







I was given a free maker upper by Benefit via Twitter a few days after lollitint hit the shelves so I knew I had to try it as I am a complete Benefit fanatic. Well it worked because I left Debenhams with a lighter purse and lollitint in my hands. I've already mentioned lollitint in my Spring Has Sprung post (here) because the candy orchid tint is the perfect product for achieving a Spring look. Benefit have definitely created another winner with this tint.

The consistency of this tint is a lot creamier than the likes of Benetint but it dries really fast so speed is key with applying lollitint. The benebabe in Debenhams showed me the best way to apply it, this was to apply lollitint directly on to your brush and then buff it onto your cheeks. This avoids leaving the dots where the product was first applied with the small brush that is supplied.

I love lollitint, it completely perks up my face thanks to the dewiness of the product, almost acting as a highlighter and a tint. It's safe to say lollitint is one of my favourites of the year!

Have you given it a try yet?

Lily xx

Four Things I Love From This Week

The four things I've loved this week are….

Feeling so excited and ready for the Spring with these beautiful flowers
Spring make up face using the products featured in my Spring Has Sprung post
Was lucky enough to be asked to write a beauty guest post for dating magazine Singles Warehouse, read it here
My pug mug once again making an appearance with my very berry muffins, yum!

What have your favourite things from this week been? Follow me on instagram here xx 

Spring Has Sprung

I'm so excited that it's nearly spring, I think it is probably my favourite time of the year. The change in the seasons means one thing to me, a change in my make up bag. Time to start ditching the dark shades in favour of nudes and pastels.

Spring times for me is all about looking fresh and glowy. So one of my favourite products is my Dior Nude Glow complexion enhancer. It re-appears in my routine every Spring/ Summer and is the perfect alternative for foundation on those days when you just can't be bothered. For my cheeks Benefit completely has my heart with its Hervana box O'powder. It's just perfect for a fresh face. Lollitint is my latest favourite of this year and this is perfect tint for Spring.

For lips it's all about nudes and pale pinks for me. I can't get enough of these shades and own far too many similar ones but they're all gorgeous. This years nails is all about pastels and while I love them I'm still more inclined towards pale pinks and nudes although I am loving my Ciate yellow pastel polish.

Finally is scent. Spring is when all the flowers start coming out, yay, so I love wearing florally scents in Spring. My two current favourites are my Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet (read my review here) and Benefit Ring My Bella.

What are your favourite Spring time products?

Lily xx

Very Berry Muffins



So this weeks Sunday baking consisted of very berry muffins. I wasn't sure if these would be slightly strenuous for me, nothing worse than dry crumbly muffins, but they were a hit with the fam so I obviously did something right! The recipe is as followed and if you try them let me know how you get on.


Very Berry Muffins 
Ingredients
375g all-purpose flour 
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
100g granulated sugar
100g brown sugar
240ml milk
120ml olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
340g mixed berries, fresh or frozen (not thawed)


Directions


1. Gently toss together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Mix until all dry ingredients are combined - a 20 second toss to disburse everything together. 
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until combined. Whisk in milk, oil, and vanilla extract. 
3. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix everything together by hand. Mix until all the flour is off the bottom of the bowl and no big pockets of flour remain. The batter will be extremely thick and somewhat lumpy. Very gently to avoid them from leaking their color, fold in 1 and 3/4 cups mixed berries.
4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins, filling all the way to the top. Using 1/4 cup of the berries you have leftover, press a few into the tops of each muffin. 
5. Bake at 190 degrees C for 5 minutes for 25-26 minutes until tops are lightly golden. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. 




Four Things I Love From This Week

The four things I've loved this week are….

American diner lunch with the fam, the most AMAZING black forest milkshake
Can't get enough of nude nails for the upcoming Spring season 
Face of the day using some of my absolute current favourite products 

What have your favourite things from this week been? Follow me on instagram here xx