Sunday, 20 April 2014

New Marks and Spencer Beauty Hall

This Thursday I was lucky enough to be invited to visit Marks and Spencer in Nottingham to check out their new Beauty Hall. The store itself has had a massive overhaul and involved the addition of an extensive beauty department which I think is going to be rolled out to M&S stores nationwide soon!

When I got to the store I was met by Jade who does the PR, and I was also lucky enough to meet Gemma a fellow beauty blogger. We went to the café to have a bit of a chat and a much needed coffee, the café itself has had an expansion and you can now look out onto a picturesque church garden. It was a lovely place to be, the perfect place to have a sit down and a drink after a long day shopping,and the view is so pretty you can forget you’re in a busy city. The café stocks food that is available to buy in the store, we were given some bits to sample and it was all delicious! Whilst in the café we had a chat with Mark who is the store manager, he talked us through the ideas behind the redesign of the shop and it was obvious how excited and proud he was to bring a better experience to the customer. In fact we met with various staff throughout the day and all of them gave the impression that they were so passionate and enthusiastic about the store. Helen gave us a tour of womenswear and I have to admit I was impressed, there were so many items that I would love to wear, especially from the limited collection. The next stop was lingerie, I have always bought underwear from M&S and it was all so beautiful I will definitely be going there soon to replace some old bits and pieces. The whole shop is focused on making shopping easier and convenient for the customer by providing them with more inspiration and when walking around the store it was apparent that a lot of work had gone into making the layout perfect for stress-free shopping.

So now onto the beauty department which was unquestionably the highlight of my day, we were shown around by Michelle and you could tell from her knowledge she was so passionate about beauty. The department was spacious and light making it a pleasure to shop in, most of the products offered testers and the staff were more than willing to provide small pots for taking away some to try. Michelle had been trained by the individual brands so she really knew their stuff, and being beauty enthusiast herself Michelle had first-hand experience of a lot of the products, perfect for giving us some great tips! The products were all beautifully laid out which added to the shopping experience and really made you feel like you were browsing somewhere luxurious. 

I was really impressed with the range of brands that they had to offer, from their traditional Autograph range to a really intriguing brand I’d never heard of called Skyn Iceland which is apparently used by Heidi Klum! I loved the fact there was a mix of well-known brands such as Ren and Nuxe but also a lot of other brands that I hadn’t heard of, I love discovering new brands and I left with a list of products I’d like to try in the future. I think that the M&S beauty hall is making a lot of the brands more accessible to buy on the high street, Apivita for example which is a natural greek brand I have been wanting to try for a while. I could spend hours browsing the brands and I will definitely be returning to quiz Michelle on some more of her favourite products. 

My favourite thing about the beauty department is that the trained staff like Michelle have no loyalty to a particular brand their advice is unbiased and their only concern is making sure you walk away with something that is right for you. Combine this with the fact they offer amazing brands which are less mainstream gives Marks and Spencers the edge over some other department stores. Marks and Spencer Nottingham now stocks a multitude of brands including Ren, Nuxe, Skyn Iceland, Apivita, Murad, Bliss, Glam Glow, H20+, Filorga, Diego Dalla Palma, Phillip Kingsley and Leighton Denny, together with a variety of M&S own brands such as Pure and Autograph.

The morning was lovely and all of the staff we met on the day (Mark, Michelle, Helen and Sarah) were so friendly they really made the day. It was clear that Marks and Spencer is a company which is committed to providing quality to all their customers. Thanks for the amazing day!

Lots of Love

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Sunday, 6 April 2014

Recent Additions - Makeup

Hey guys,

Hope you’re all having a nice weekend! I have to give a presentation on Monday so I’m going to be trying to get over my nerves before tomorrow!

Recently Boots have been offering 3 for 2 across their makeup, so I’ve acquired a few fresh pieces in my collection that I thought I’d give a few quick opinions on.

I’m currently having a bit of a love affair with highlighters, I can’t believe I’ve waited so long to discover their magic! I wasn’t sure if they were going to become a permanent fixture in my routine so the first one I purchased was the MUA Undress your Skin Shimmer Highlighter as it is only £3.00! It’s a gorgeous champagne pink highlighter which isn’t overly shimmery, it’s perfect for giving your skin a natural glow. You can see that the product is contoured and it makes you feel like you’re using a more expensive product which is a plus. The highlighter itself isn’t overly pigmented so you can easily build it up to the level you want.

 During the colder months my skin becomes less oily and more combination, this meant my Double Wear foundation started to become a bit too drying for me. I decided to take advantage of Boots 3 for 2 and pick up some of the Boujours Healthy Mix Serum, as I thought it would be a bit more nourishing for my winter skin. I really like this foundation, the gel texture feels so light on your skin, it just glides on and it also has a lovely smell! Since the weather has gotten a bit warmer I feel like this is now not really suitable for my skin which is really upsetting. I’m still working with it because I really like the healthy glow it gives you. It doesn’t absorb into my skin like it used to, now it feels like I’m just moving it around my face with my brush.  

I also bought the Bourjois Happy Light Concealer, I got 21 – Ivoire and regrettably I think it might be a bit too dark for my skin at the moment. In my opinion it’s an awfully heavy concealer and it creases terribly under my eyes, however it does give very good coverage of blemishes. I don’t really wear this very much to be honest, my skin just does not like the thick texture!

 The last recent addition to my collection is the Autograph High Definition Mascara-Marks and Spencer*, this mascara works wonders at lengthening your eyelashes.I have never used any of the beauty products from Marks and Spencer but I have to say I'm seriously impressed with this product! I have only been using this for a week but I can already see we’re going to get on well! The mascara applies easily with no clumping, the only thing I don’t like about this product is the plastic wand, I much prefer natural bristles but this mascara still works well so it’s not a big complaint.

I’ll hopefully be doing some more in depth reviews of a few of these items soon.

Have you tried any of these products?

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Thursday, 3 April 2014

Books Wishlist

I feel like there are so many books that I've missed out on recently, I know at one point everyone seemed to be reading Gone Girl except me and I really want to catch up on some reading. These are some of the books that I will read first when I finally get to sit down with a book. Neil Gaiman is one of my favourite authors and in fact my favourite book of all time was written by him so I cannot wait to get my hands on his newest book. I also love Jojo Moyes, another book by here (me before you) is one of the best books I've read in a long time and hopefully I'll read some more of her writing.

What books are you wanting to read at the moment?

Lots of Love

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