Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Why "Shit Happens" Should Be Your New Go-To Drinking Game

Many of you will soon be celebrating the end of the exam period. I've been there many times now and generally it goes a bit like this:
1. Spend two hours getting ready
2. Friends arrive for pre-drinks
3. Spend a good few hours at someone's house playing drinking games (everyone knows this is the best part of a night out)
4. Get a taxi to town to go to a questionable nightclub
5. Boogie
6. Walk home, stopping at some kind of fast food place on the way 

Now let's skip back to step 3, because there's a new kid on the block in the games industry and it's called "Shit Happens". I was kindly sent this to review and in true student fashion I, of course, had to review it as part of the night out ritual. 


The aim of the game is to order your cards, which have different shitty scenarios on them, in order of their shit-ness. They range from inconveniently getting genital warts, to being involved in a major earthquake. You get the picture. Sure, this game can be played harmlessly and alcohol-free, but I can vouch for the fact it's super fun when made into a drinking game - if you guess the order wrong for a card... you drink!


Shit Happens has received the Charli stamp of approval and I highly recommend giving it a go if you like other games like Cards Against Humanity, or you fancy something a bit different to the usual card games like Ring of Fire (there's only so many times one can down a dirty pint). If you're interested in Cheatwell Games' Shit Happens, you can find it here on Amazon.
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Saturday, 28 April 2018

Leighton Denny's Easy Peel Base Coat - As Good As It Sounds?

Us gals go through a lot in our lives: we put up with monthly periods and all the fun and cramps that come with them; we push babies out of our bodies like some kind of Superwoman; and on top of all that, we go through the pain of trying to take off glitter nail polish that just doesn't want to budge. We've all been there - desperately scrubbing away at a chipped glitter coat with a cotton pad, only for the cotton wool to drag and cling onto the tiny pieces of glitter until your left in a crying heap on the floor and glitter nail varnish STILL on your nails. Okay, this may be an exaggeration, but it's a pain, right? Something we could do without? Well fear not glitter lovers, Leighton Denny has come up with a solution.


I was generously gifted Leighton Denny's NEW Easy-Peel base coat, along with one of their glitter nail polishes called Twinkle Twinkle to try with it. The instructions say to put two layers of the Easy Peel base coat on before topping with your fave glitter polish. The base coat paints on white and then as it dries it turns clear. It dries super quickly and doesn't feel thick or gloopy, so it doesn't take long to do the two base coats. Once they were dry, I put on two layers of Twinkle Twinkle to complete the look. I love the look of a glitter polish and this silver colour goes with most outfits so it was perfect for my Saturday night out. 



Now here is my recommendation: this peel-off base is great if you want to wear a glitter polish for a day or for a particular event, without the trouble of taking it off the next day. It is PERFECT for that. However, don't expect it to last a whole week. The beauty of this product is that it's super convenient if you want to be able to take off your polish really easily. I found that after submersing my nails in water quite a bit during the day (e.g. while showering, washing up dishes) the nails started to come off. In the instructions, it suggests that you gently push at the edges of your nail until the polish comes away from your nail bed. And it really is that easy! And also how satisfying is it peeling off nail varnish? (The answer is VERY). If you peel of shellac or normal nail polish, it often leaves nail beds feeling rough and brittle. With the Leighton Denny Easy Peel base, my nails felt perfectly healthy and smooth after taking them off - bonus!



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Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Why You NEED to Visit Saray Turkish Cuisine in Cardiff

If you're a local, you'll no doubt be aware of Cardiff's City Road - jam-packed with so many delicious eateries from all over the world, you really are spoilt for choice. Saray is a Turkish restaurant situated about halfway down the infamous road, and they kindly invited me, along with a few other bloggers, to a cooking masterclass with their fantastic chefs. 


We were sat down in the restaurant and offered a beautiful cup of Turkish tea - very unlike my usual morning English Breakfast tea! The aromas were fantastic too and complemented the smell of freshly baked breads coming from the kitchen. 


We started off with an Adana kebab masterclass using minced lamb (my favourite meat!). We were shown how to roll and place the mince onto the skewers so that they look presentable before they are cooked. They made it look a lot easier than it actually was! Regardless, I like to think I did a pretty good job of it in the end! 


We then went through to learn how to make their fresh breads, and we also made Pide - a kind of Turkish pizza. These can have an array of different fillings - we made a Ispanakli pide (feta cheese, spinach, red peppers, onion and mushrooms) as well as two meat pides (one chicken, one lamb) but the vegetarian pide was my favourite for sure.



The best bit about the cooking class? Being able to eat it all at the end! They say food always tastes better when you've made it yourself, and this was no exception! The lamb kebab and pides were beautiful, and the fresh bread and dips complemented the dishes perfectly. The fact that we saw all the food being freshly prepared made me realise how different Saray is to other Turkish restaurants I've been to. Every single thing I ate (even the hummus) had been freshly prepared in the restaurant - and you can really tell! The flavours were fantastic and I can't wait to go back and bring along friends and family.



If you're a Cardiff student like me (or even just visiting Cardiff) looking for somewhere to eat out - perhaps City Road feels a bit overwhelming with its huge choice of restaurants - look no further than Saray! 
 



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Tuesday, 20 March 2018

REVIEW: Class and a Glass, Tramshed Cardiff



What's better than a good old fashioned workout to make you feel great? I'll tell you what - a good old fashioned workout followed by a glass of prosecco!





I was invited to try out Tramshed's latest fitness craze - a workout class followed by a relaxing glass of bubbly. It might seem counter-intuitive but in fact there's nothing more refreshing than the fizz of prosecco after working your socks off. 

I took my flatmate to the class with me - it's a really social atmosphere and a great place to meet people or hang out with friends. The class I took part in was "Smash Hits" - all the tunes! The workout was a body combat style and I'll tell you now it wasn't easy! However I got stuck right in and by the end of it I felt like a street fighting pro. The instructor was really engaging and made sure everyone of all abilities was able to get involved, which made all the difference.







At the end of the class, we sat down in Tramshed's bar/restaurant area called The Waiting Room. Unfortunately I can't comment on the brunch part of the event because due to chef illness that day there was no food. However, the prosecco went down very well and added to the social aspect of the event.


I think Tramshed's Class and a Glass is a fantastic idea - it's fun, keeps you fit and allows you to hang out with your friends at the same time. They even do a student discount for us University go-ers! The class is the perfect to sweep away that Sunday morning hangover! Keep an eye on http://tramshedcardiff.com/ for any more upcoming classes in Cardiff!
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Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Feed Your Inner Good @ Wagamama!

This month, two of my favourite things in life (Japanese food and talking about mental health) came together and I couldn't be happier. I visited Wagamama in Princesshay, Exeter a couple of weeks ago to talk about their current collaboration with the charity Mind - and of course a lot of delicious food was devoured in the process.


As a Psychology graduate and also now a Psychology PhD student, mental health is something I am and have always been interested in, and I'm aware that Mind are a fantastic charity that provide invaluable resources and advice to so many people across the UK. 


Wagamama are donating 25p from every one of their Positive juices that they sell up until 6th March - AND they're delicious! The juice is made up of pineapple, lime, spinach, apple and cucumber and is super refreshing. All the ingredients are great to cleanse the body, as well as the mind.


Wagamama are also promoting mindfulness and its benefits for improving mental health. Their paper placemats are the perfect canvas for some mindful colouring while you wait for your food. They are also supporting mindful eating - the act of being in the present and taking in and appreciating every single mouthful. 


During my visit, I tried the grilled duck donburi along with numerous delicious side dishes - my favourite side had to be the ebi katsu: gorgeous crispy fried prawns with a chilli sauce. The duck was also beautiful. I wanted to try something different from my usual ramen noodles and I was recommended the donburi, which was a great choice!


I'll definitely be visiting Wagamama again soon and picking up a Positive juice to support Mind and the amazing things they do... and hopefully you will too!
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Monday, 15 January 2018

The Best Of: Soap & Glory

Happy New Year! We're well and truly gliding into 2018 now, and what better way to celebrate than with a roundup of my favourite products from Soap & Glory. You can find S&G in Boots in the UK and they're particularly popular around Christmas with their fab range of gift sets each year. This blog post was inspired by my giveaway win from Chloe's Youtube channel - you can check her out here (and believe me you should)! I won her 3k subscribers giveaway which consisted of a gorgeous set of Soap & Glory products. I also received a few bits for Christmas so I am well and truly stocked up for the new year! 

I've been using Soap & Glory products for at least the last three or four years, and 2016 was the year I also discovered their makeup range. So in this post I'm going to be including some products that I really love and also some products I'm excited to try out. 



1. Hand Food - £5.50

This is a Soap & Glory classic. It has their Original Pink signature scent and has a luxurious thick texture which leave your hands feeling beautifully hydrated and moisturised. It can be bought in a  full size tube but I also love their travel size option which is perfect for popping into a handbag. 



2. Sugar Crush Body Wash - £6.50

This was the first product I ever tried from S&G and the reason for my continued loyalty to the brand. Although the scent isn't my favourite anymore, I still really enjoy its sweet citrus tones and in-shower moisturising qualities. A full bottle lasts me for months, making it very good value for money. 


3. The Righteous Butter - £2.50 - £10.00

You will rarely find me without one of these in my handbag. For me, this is their stand-out hero product and I'm sure many people will agree! Just like Hand Food, it has their Original Pink scent.  I love using The Righteous Butter all over my body after a shower but particularly on areas that get very dry during this time of year, like my elbows and hands. 



4. Archery Brow Pencil - £8.50

I discovered this product just over a year ago thanks to The Tab who did an interview with me - P.S. if you want to read the interview, just click through to this link. I reviewed the Archery brow pencil as part of the interview and absolutely fell in love with it. A brow pencil has always been my brow product of choice and this one just ticks every single box. I wrote a full review of Archery, so feel free to click here for more thoughts and info.



5. Crazy Sexy Kohl/Smoulder Kohl - £5.50

I believe this was a limited edition kohl liner but they have a similar looking one called Smoulder Kohl - hopefully the formula isn't too different! I don't wear kohl liner on a day-to-day basis, but if I do decide to wear it (usually on a night out) I tend to reach for Soap & Glory. Their kohl liners are soft and glide on effortlessly - just what I look for in a pencil eyeliner!



6. Scrub Of Your Life - £7.00

I've tried S&G's Sugar Crush and Smoothie Star Breakfast scrubs, but I'm yet to try this one. Based on the other two, I have high hopes for this one! The other two were quite abrasive scrubs, making them great for prepping legs for shaving or fake tanning. I'm looking forward to giving this one a go too.


7. Face Soap and Clarity - £8.00

I'm yet to try any of Soap & Glory's skincare range, but I've heard lots of great things particularly about this facial wash. Hopefully 2018 will be the year I try out more of S&G's skincare products - their face masks are already on my list. I've tried a lot of Vitamin C products over the years so it'll be interesting to see how I get on with this one too.



8. Sexy Mother Pucker Lip Gloss - £9.00

The last product I'm excited to try is from their Sexy Mother Pucker range. I'm generally not much of a lip gloss wearer, but S&G's lip products are notorious for their lip plumping qualities, so I'm really interested to see if they live up to their name!
 

Let me know in the comments if you have any favourite Soap & Glory products, or whether this blog post has inspired any future purchases! 
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Friday, 8 December 2017

REVIEW: Energy Hair @ Darts Farm, Topsham

If you're local to Exeter or the surrounding areas, there's no doubt you'll have heard of Darts Farm. It's a beautiful farm shop boasting local produce and so much more. A hidden gem around the back of Darts Farm is its spa & beauty facilities, including the likes of Energy Hair.

I was kindly invited to receive a wash, cut and blow dry with Luke, one of Energy's newest recruits. He finished his training with Sassoon in London earlier this year, and his enthusiasm and talent for hairdressing really showed. He also makes a pretty good cup of tea!


The process began with the hair wash - quite possibly my favourite bit! A relaxing head massage was exactly what I needed after the stressful weekend I'd had at work. The massage chair they provide at the basins definitely helped too! These little touches just go to show how luxurious and relaxing Energy Hair is - it's not just a place to get your seasonal haircut, but somewhere you can unwind and enjoy.



Post-wash, Luke asked how I'd like my hair cut. I wasn't looking for a drastic hair change - just a couple of inches off and some subtle layers cut back in. Luke listened well and did a great job. He cut and blow dried my hair exactly how I like it and I couldn't have been happier with it. It was great to see Nathan, the owner of Energy Hair, checking in on Luke and I during the process. Luke is still learning of course, but it was clear that Nathan had full confidence in Luke's abilities - as did I! The whole staff team seem really friendly and were a joy to be around. 



Overall, I would really recommend Energy Hair at Darts Farm to anyone in the market for a new do or just a touch up. The salon is perfect if you're looking for a luxurious retreat and an hour or so's escape from reality while the team work their magic on your locks. And don't underestimate the talent and abilities of a newly trained hairdresser - Luke did a better job than a lot of more experienced hairdressers I've been to in the past! Definitely worth a visit! For more information, visit http://www.energyhair.com



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