Bandwagon? Jumping? Well, I can't really deny that, but nonetheless I thought my improvised take on this sickly-sweet recipe was worth sharing; if you happen to have a dozen spare Creme eggs or a horrendously sweet tooth, this will be right up your street!
Start by popping ten Creme eggs in the fridge, and pre-heat your oven to 180°C. Beat three medium eggs with 320g Caster sugar until white and creamy; I used an electric mixer but you could probably make do with a whisk and a lot of elbow grease!
Melt 200g Dark chocolate with 175g Butter (blast in the microwave for thirty seconds at a time, or pop in a bowl over a pan of boiled water), then pour into the egg and sugar mixture and combine to form a thick, chocolatey mousse-like consistency.
Add 110g Plain flour and mix until just combined. Pour the mixture into a 12" x 8" tin lined with baking paper, and pop in the oven for twenty minutes.
This is where it gets messy! Remove your Creme eggs from the fridge, unwrap, and slice each one in half lengthwise; as you can see, mine tended to collapse, but that's okay. Pop them back in the fridge until your brownies have had 20 minutes in the oven. Remove the tray from the oven and press the Creme egg halves into the brownie, remembering that the tin will be hot! Return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes.
Allow to cool in the tin before slicing into squares. As you can see, my Creme eggs kind of melted a bit all over the place, but that's okay - these are never going to be neat, and I can assure they still tasted amazing!
Have you tried baking with Creme eggs? What recipe would you like to try them in? Or would you find the whole thing too sickly?
Although I'm pretty loyal to Naked's Starflower Body Wash, when I saw their whole body wash range on a half price promotion in Boots recently, I decided to pick up an alternative to try; I went for the Love Me Heaven Scent Rose Body Wash, which is described as follows: "Gorgeous rose oils produce an aroma so addictive, people want to eat it, and the extracts in here are bursting with antioxidants to help protect and soothe skin. This body wash is heaven on earth, so wake up and smell the roses (they were picked before dawn, after all). To use: Rub onto wet skin and use a buff puff for more lather. Enjoy the bouquet then rinse away. Naked truth: Made with lots of naturally derived ingredients, without sulphates, parabens or petrochemicals, this is goodness in a bottle."
Packaged in Naked's standard translucent plastic bottle with the press-down-and-squirt cap which is easy to use with wet hands whilst in the shower, this has a beautiful font on the front of the bottle which makes it look really pretty in my bathroom. The scent upon opening the bottle is a lovely typical rose-scent which, despite not being a rose person, I've actually been really enjoying. It's quite a strong scent but doesn't overly linger on the skin so shouldn't interfere with your perfume etc. The body wash is quite a thick gel-like consistency which is easy to dispense and produces a lovely lather when rubbed over the skin. I tend to use it with my exfoliating gloves, but it lathers just as nicely with a flannel or shower lily. I find the body wash does a lovely job of cleaning my skin, leaving it soft and ever so slightly scented. It doesn't irritate my sensitive skin and has fitted nicely into to my daily routine, helping to keep my eczema at bay! I've also used this as a bubble bath, finding that it produces a good amount of foam, although it doesn't last very long in the water; I'd recommend trying their Bath Foam if baths are more your cup of tea. I prefer showers so I'm really not too fussed about this!
All in all, this has been a lovely change from my usual Body Wash and has kept my skin soft and clean, with a beautiful scent. Suitable for vegetarians and vegans, Naked Love Me Heaven Scent Rose Body Wash is priced at £3.98 for 250ml of product and is available direct from the Naked website, or from Bootsstores (for the slightly higher price of £3.99!).
Are you a fan of rose-scented products? Have you tried any of Naked's products? What's your favourite scent for a body wash?
I received Max Factor's False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara in the shade 'Black Brown' as part of a giveaway prize from Layla over at Sprinkles of Style; I've been using it for a couple of weeks now and thought it was about time to share my thoughts! Firstly, I just want to mention that I usually choose black mascaras and wouldn't personally have gone for 'Black Brown' out of choice; however, I've tried to give it a fair test run!
I have to admit to not being a massive fan of the tube; whilst I like the black with the blue band indicating that this mascara is the waterproof version, I feel like the tube is a lot chunkier than it needs to be, and I would personally prefer a slimmer, more compact option. This takes up a lot of space in my mascara jar and in my make-up bag. I was initially dubious about the wand, as although I'm perfectly happy with either a traditional 'bristle' spoolie-style brush or a plastic comb-style one, I wasn't sure how bristles this short would apply mascara to my lashes. I like to be able to wiggle the wand through my lashes and really coat each lash with product, but I found that that just wasn't possible with this style of wand; trying to do so meant ending up with smudged mascara over my eyelids, which is never a good look!
I ended up applying two coats of mascara to achieve any kind of length or volume, whereas usually I'd only apply one coat for daytime wear, occasionally using two for a night out. This isn't a massive problem but does mean it takes a little longer to apply my mascara in the morning. Despite my reservations, the colour of this mascara was actually fine and whilst it was maybe a little less dark than my usual choices, I don't think it's noticeably so. For me, the wand is what lets this mascara down. Removal was, I found, a nightmare; I know this is a waterproof mascara but I use an eye make-up remover, an oil cleanser and then a cream or gel cleanser depending on my mood, and still found that there were smudges of mascara under my eyes come morning. To put that into perspective, even They're Real! came off relatively easily in comparison to this! I don't tend to purchase waterproof mascaras and this is why.
My final comment is that I think the name of this product is quite misleading; 'False Lash Effect' mascara makes it sound like it's going to give a dramatic effect whereas even with two or three coats, this is as far as I'm concerned very much a 'daytime' mascara and not something I'd choose for a night out. The description on the tube does say "Full lashes, natural look" so I'm really not sure why they went with the 'False Lash Effect' name as it is most definitely a natural effect!
Max Factor False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara is available from Boots or Superdrug, priced at £10.99 for 13.1ml of product. Personally, the extra time taken to apply two coats coupled with the awkwardness of removal meant this isn't a mascara I love and I won't be repurchasing; I might consider trying the non-waterproof version but even then, I don't see it being a product I love. If you habitually apply multiple coats of mascara and aren't after any dramatic false lash effects, this could be the product for you, but otherwise, I don't think I'd recommend Max Factor's False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara.
Have you tried this product? What were your thoughts? What's your all-time favourite mascara?
[Please note this product was received as part of a giveaway prize; this has not affected my review and as always, all thoughts are entirely my own.]
The fifth and final week of Danni's #NailArtWeeklyProject is themed 'Glitz & Glam'; I had a lot of ideas for this theme but sadly not the time to really do any of them properly, so I ended up going for something of a cop-out in the form of a glittery topcoat. I started with Nail Envy, as always, followed by two coats of 'Plum' from Barry M's Gelly Hi-Shine range. I really love the rich, deep purple shade of 'Plum' and the lovely glossy finish it has! Once this was dry, I added a thick coat of 'Frenzy' by Sinful Colors, which is a gorgeous mix of fuchsia and aqua glitter in a clear base. My nails are quite short at the moment as I've had to cut them for work (sob!) but I think this actually looks pretty good on shorter nails. The photos below are without topcoat, and sadly they really don't do justice to how sparkly the glitter in 'Frenzy' is!
I think 'Frenzy' worked really well with 'Plum', although I'm also looking forward to trying it over lighter shades to really make it pop! What do you think of this week's mani? What would you have chosen for the theme 'Glitz & Glam'?
February has been a busy month for me, which unfortunately has left my blog a little bit neglected; I had a whole list of posts planned but just haven't had the time to sit down and get them written up! Along with starting my new job at the end of last month, we also had problems with our internet connection because of the storms mid-month, and we had the little ones for ten days over half term which kept us nicely busy with trips to the swimming pool and the playground. I'm hoping things will settle down a little moving into March and I'll be able to get back to a proper, regular blogging schedule. In the meantime, here are the products I've used up in February!
Naked Soft Touch Starflower Body Wash I love this stuff, I rave about it pretty much every month; it smells gorgeous and doesn't dry my skin out, instead leaving it soft and gently cleaned. I have two or three bottles of this in my stash currently as I stocked up whilst it was half price in Boots!
Repurchase? Yes! Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo I don't think a month passes without a trusty can of Batiste featuring in my Empties. I actually have completely run out now so I'm popping into Superdrug on my way to work today to stock up as I can't be without it!
Repurchase? Yes. Impulse True Love Body Spray Another can of Impulse which I've had for longer than I care to think about; I wasn't particularly keen on the fragrance of this one as it was too floral for my liking. Nonetheless, I've used it up now!
Repurchase? No. The Body Shop Rainforest Balance Shampoo & Conditioner Duo (x2) I got these four mini bottles in a set in the January sales and was really excited to try them. Whilst they smelt beautiful, they sadly didn't do much for me, with the shampoo not cleaning my hair/scalp to my liking, and the conditioner not being rich enough for my dry ends. Sadly, these just weren't for me!
Collection Longer Lash Lengthening Mascara This worked pretty well for me and is definitely a good budget choice, as well as being easy to remove with eye make-up remover or standard cleanser, but I still prefer my beloved Soap & Glory Thick & Fast mascara for the length and volume it gives.
Repurchase? Probably not. Laidbare Working 9 to 5 Anti-Ageing Hydration Cream I really enjoyed using this moisturiser, it hydrated my oily skin well without making it sticky or greasy, which is exactly what I'm after in a moisturiser. I also liked that the ingredients list is free of nasties such as parabens and petroleum-based ingredients. I've got a few sample-sized moisturisers to use before I make another day cream purchase, but this is definitely on my list of potentials.
Repurchase? Maybe. Superdrug Acetone Nail Polish Remover I deliberately chose the acetone version when buying this nail polish remover, to see if it made the removal of glitter polish any easier; I honestly didn't notice a difference, but did find that it dried out my cuticles, so in future I'll be sticking to the more conditioning, acetone-free versions.
Repurchase? No. Mitchum Advanced Control 48 Hour Cream Deodorant This is the only deodorant I buy as it's the only one I've found to be effective for me; I don't rely on it lasting 48 hours as I reapply daily, but it does the job, has a pleasant scent, and doesn't irritate my sensitive skin, which make it pretty much perfect in my book.
Repurchase? Already have. The Body Shop Ginger Sparkle Body Butter This is one of my favourite body butter scents and I was pretty excited to pick this up just before Christmas (it's a limited edition festive scent). Like all the Body Shop body butters, I found this moisturised my skin well and left a beautiful scent behind.
Repurchase? Not currently available, but if the range is re-released this year, I'll definitely pick a couple up! Boots Smooth Care Shave Gel This did the job just fine for me, giving a lovely lather with which to shave my legs and underarms. I only bought the Boots version because it was on offer; it's now full price again which makes it more expensive than picking up Gillette from Body Care, so that's what I'll be doing until there's another offer!
Repurchase? Not at the moment.
So, those are my Empties from February! What have you used up this month? Have you tried any of these products? Do you have any moisturiser recommendations for oily skin?
Wow, the last week has flown by with not a single post on my blog - sorry guys! This has basically been a combination of our Internet going down in the storms last week, and then having the little ones for half term this week - I've barely had time to shower, never mind think about blogging! Nevertheless, I'm back now, with my post for week four of Danni's #NailArtWeeklyProject; this week the theme is Birth Month. I was born in September and not much happens in September, so I decided to work with my birth stone, which is a Sapphire. I've not done any leopard print nail art in aaages and it's one of my favourites, so I decided to do that! I started with two coats on Barry M 'Blueberry' from the Gelly Hi-Shine range, with three coats of Born Pretty's Holo Polish in shade 8 on my ring and index fingers. I then dotted the Born Pretty polish randomly onto my other three nails, before roughly outlining the splodges with my black Barry M Nail Art Pen. I then called my Gran whilst I waited for the polish to dry (that woman can talk - I can see where I get it from!) before applying a coat of Jacava London's top coat for a lovely glossy finish. February weather isn't the best for capturing holo polish in its true beauty, but we did have a bit of sun this morning so hopefully these photos are halfway decent. The first is in natural light, and the others are in direct sunlight.
I'm actually really happy with how this turned out, I love the holo leopard spots! This is definitely my favourite mani from the #NailArtWeeklyProject so far. What do you think? What would you pick for nail art inspired by your birth month? Let me know if you've posted for this week's theme!
Week Three of the #NailArtWeeklyProject organised by Danni is themed on Valentine's Day, which is of course tomorrow! I've sadly been quite pushed for time this week what with work and training courses, so I went with a simple heart design. Over a base of OPI Nail Envy, I started with three coats of Models Own 'Snow White' on all nails but my ring finger, which I painted with two coats of Rimmel Lycra 'Ruby Me', pressing the heart sequins into the second coat before it dried. I then used a dotting tool to create the hearts and polka dots on the white nails with the Rimmel polish. I finished off with a coat of Jacava LONDON's topcoat although, as you can see, I didn't wait quite long enough before applying it which caused some of the hearts to smudge. Otherwise, I'm fairly happy with how this turned out!
What will you be wearing on your nails this Valentine's Day? Are you attempting any nail art? What do you think to my efforts?
Being offered an interview for a job you would love is simultaneously one of the most exciting, and daunting, concepts you will have to deal with when it comes to your working life. It's not just the idea of the actual interview, either – the questions you’ll be asked, the answers you'll be expected to give and the overwhelming desire to show a little personality to stand out from the crowd – it's the build up to the interview, too. Preparing yourself ahead of an interview can mean the difference between being offered the position or being let down; making sure you have researched the role and done all that you can to prepare yourself will ensure that by the time the interview arrives, you will have the confidence and knowledge to succeed. However, the worries don't stop there - you also have an interview outfit to think about!
What you wear to an interview will depend largely on the type of establishment you're going to see and the industry in which you hope to work. If you're being interviewed for a managerial position, or for a company that expects their employees to look formal and business-like at all times, you will be expected to wear a completely different outfit than somewhere a little more casual. Make sure, before even considering what to wear for your interview, that you know the type of person they want to employ, and dress accordingly.
It's important to make a great first impression – after all, this tends to be one of the things that the interviewer will remember you by – so here are a few helpful tips and pieces of advice that will help you choose a killer outfit which will be a contributing factor to you bagging the job of your dreams.
• For men, a smart shirt and pair of tailored trousers should be the minimum. Depending on the formality expected, you may wish to wear a two piece suit and tie as well, or for a more casual environment, smart trousers and a cool jacket or blazer. Make sure that clothes are ironed, too.
• For women, pencil skirts are a winner. They're a great way of looking sophisticated and business-like, without showing off too much skin. Team with a flattering blouse with a statement collar, and court shoes, for a formal, interview-perfect outfit. Don't worry too much about spending a fortune on interview gear either; you can find some gorgeous outfits, including Pencil skirts from George at ASDA, for affordable prices.
• Make sure that you look your best. Wash and style your hair, paint your nails a subtle colour, add some natural makeup and wear some delicate perfume so that your scent doesn't overpower the room as soon as you walk in.
• Give the HR department a call if you'd like to find out more information about the dress code. It's a good idea to dress like you're already part of the company, so that they can see that you'd be perfect for the position.
Most of all, don't overdo it but make sure that you're dressed the part. While clothes alone won't get you the job, dressing appropriately will definitely help your chances!
What do you like to wear for an interview? Which of the skirts above is your favourite? Do you have any top tips for interview outfits, or interviews in general?
Here is my first OOTD post of 2014; as promised, featuring my lovely tartan dress from In Love With Fashion! I paired it with a simple pair of black tights and my comfy studded boots - which are an added bonus as they're furry inside! I was sent the tights from TightsPlease and they are also hiding a little secret; they have a cosy fleecy lining which is just the ticket in this horrible cold weather. I obviously didn't stay outside like this for long; I also wore a massive cosy black hoodie over the top to keep me warm, but you couldn't see much of the dress then... The tartan worked perfectly with my The Blackout hoodie, though, for a rock chick kind of outfit.
Dress: In Love With Fashion [Purchased with store credit]
This beautiful dress is still available for just £19 in In Love With Fashion's sale, in a Medium or Large; mine is a Medium if that helps you guessing sizes! Are you still loving the tartan trend? How would you style this dress? I can't wait to wear it with bare legs in the summer, so the lace trim round the hem stands out a little more!
I'm the first to admit I have a bit of a skincare problem; even more so than make-up, I love buying and trying new skincare products. From moisturisers to masks, I'm always looking for something new to aid me in my quest for perfect skin and as a beauty blogger, the number of reviews I read is quite frankly dangerous! At any given moment, my skincare wishlist could easily reach up to twenty or thirty products, and yet I don't think I've ever shared a dedicated skincare wishlist - all that is about to change!
I've never tried any Elemis products but I love the sound of their Papaya Enzyme Peel for exfoliation with abrasive products. I've really liked what I've tried of The Body Shop's Seaweed range and would love to see how their Night Treatment, which is essentially a night cream, worked out with my oily skin. Similarly, I've heard only good things about Origins' High Potency Night-A-Mins and would really like to try the oil-free version to see how it fares at keeping my oily skin under control. The Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm has become something of a cult product for bloggers, which is pretty much why I'd love to try it; no way can I justify spending that much money on a cleanser, but it would be nice to give it a try! I really want to find a decent toner and love the sound of this mattifying number from Decléor, as well as the mint-green bottle being super pretty... Origins' GinZing moisturiser has been massively hyped since its release and I've love to try it as, despite being oily, my skin can tend towards the dull side. Finally, The Body Shop's new Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil is a product I'm finding really intriguing and I'd love to see how my skin gets on with it!
Have you tried any of these products? What's on your skincare wishlist currently?