Monday, May 28, 2012

My Salon Experience Review: Paul Henri (Aveda Salon)

I really hesitated to write this review as I support anything with the Aveda mark on it.  I believe in the business ethos, the natural ingredients, and the holistic and earthy approach to beauty products.  But it stops there to be honest. I have frequented Aveda spas and salons for close to 5 years now.  Each and every time, it has been great, but unfortunately, I can't say that my experience was the same with the Paul Henri Aveda salon in Ipswich.

The first time I went there was roughly 4 months ago.  My haircut was way too short, and I left feeling like a boy.  I chalked it up to having a entry level stylist, because I was tight on cash that trip.  So, this previous trip, I was determined to have a senior stylist cut my hair.  I won't mention names on this review, but just know that this is a senior stylist that I am reviewing.  At a whopping £38.95 for a hair cut, I expected a lot more from a senior stylist. 

The first problem was the condition of the salon when I arrived.  England is experiencing their summers, and needless to say that it has been HOT!  Not only did the salon not turn on their A/C, but the door wasn't even propped open.  I should have walked out immediately, but I was desperate for a hair cut, so I just dealt with the heat.  Next, the senior stylist was in a foul mood, because she said that their system was down.  Ok sistah, I get that it's stressful, but it ain't my fault the system is down so a smile would have been great.  The hair wash, hair cut, and check out barely lasted 30 minutes.  She did a rush job on everything.  I asked her if she thought the cut suited me, and she really couldn't be bothered to engage in any conversation with me.  How odd is that? A hair stylist that doesn't talk to their customer?  I was so put off by this point.  I asked her to layer the back of my hair a bit more for volume, and she couldn't be assed to do that either, giving me some lame excuse as to why, but the truth was, she just couldn't be bothered as her mind was clearly on something else and stressed.
Oh well, I won't be returning back to Paul Henri which is a shame as I love the fact that they use Aveda products.  So my quest for a half decent hair salon continues. 

So that is my experience with the Paul Henri salon on Upper Brook Street. 
CONS: Overpriced and Inexperienced staff members.
PROS:  Centrally located and uses amazing Aveda products.

I also need to mention that on my first visit to Paul Henri, I was offered a drink and also a complimentary head/scalp massage.  I was not offered either of the two on my 2nd visit.

Since the publication of this review, I have gotten 2 harassing comments.  I published and responded too the first comment but didn't get a response.  The 2nd comment arrived over a year later. This racist comment will be taken as harassment and if it does continue, I will make sure I contact the police.  

Yardley London's Royal Diamond Perfume

A while back, I did a review on Yardley's Royal English Daisy.  English Daisy was my favourite out of all the other samples that were provided for me to review.  It smelled so similar to MJ's Daisy, and I kept my bottle with me at work to spritz on myself when I needed a pick me up.  Royal Diamond is like the sexy older sister of English Daisy. 

Yardley's has been known for perfecting the singular note fragrances, and with the launch of Royal Diamond, they seem to have perfected their first multi-note floral bouquet.  It is a sophisticated fruity, sweet, and warm fragrance.  It has citrus accents of pear and bergamot, sweet subtle honey, and a gorgeous combination of rose, lily of the valley, peony and finishes off with a soft cedar wood, benzoin, vanilla and sandalwood.

Yardley's is also known for being a classic perfumer, but Royal Diamond really brings a fresh modern scent to their portfolio.  Move aside English Daisy, there is a new sheriff in town.  Royal Diamond is a really strong and feminine scent.  This scent really represents the strong modern woman, and I will gladly wear this.

Here is the gorgeous vintage inspired glass bottle, and the stunning vintage perfume atomiser that they included.  I immediately decanted into the vintage style perfume sprayer.  I mean...come on, look at it, who wouldn't love this?

 Absolutely stunning!

The Royal Diamond collection includes:
Eau de Toilette 50ml bottle - £9.99
Body Spray 75ml - £2.49

A huge thank you goes to the lovely people over at Yardley for sending this beautiful bottle to me, and for filling up my days with this absolutely amazing scent.  Yardley is heading the right direction, and I urge everyone to go out and grab this perfume as it is worth a lot more than they are asking, a hell of a lot more :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Best Massage I've Ever Had

Today's review is on a treatment and not a product, which is rare, but still essential as I know I still read reviews prior to booking any treatments.  After two friends highly recommended this therapist to me, I decided that today would be the day.  Rose Helm ITEC Dip, CThA, MTI Deep Tissue Massage Therapist, is a single practitioner in Ipswich.  Her treatment room is in an office building.  I thought that was a bit odd as I usually go to spas to get a massage done, but once you walk into her "office" it feels like a treatment room and not an office building.  Her decor is modern and minimal, and on par with all the high end salons out there.  I complimented her on how lovely it smelled (which is a HUGE deal for me).  Her room smelled like the numerous Aveda spas that I frequented in Miami, and I was very pleased with that.

Rose is extremely professional.  When she talks, you know she knows what she is talking about.  I instantly felt comfortable, and felt like I was in the right hands.  We had a brief 15 minute disucssion about my ailments, medical history and lifestyle, and she assessed that this session would be focused on my back and legs.  I can't even begin to tell you how much I needed that.  As she was doing my massage, I could tell that she knew exactly the parts of me that needed extra attention.  A lot of massage therapists just give a generic massage and glance over problem areas, but Rose didn't.  Without me even having to tell her, she knew exactly my problem areas and she began to apply a medical approach of massage to me.

I haven't mentioned this before, but I am anemic, and sometimes my lack of iron makes me very tired and often dizzy.  It has to due with the lack of oxygen that is circulating in my body.  She knew this, and she worked on getting my blood circulated.  All I can say is that for the last 1.5 weeks, I felt like utter sh*t, and after a 45 minute massage, I felt rejuvenated and extremely relaxed.  I can't even begin to tell you how amazing I felt after this massage with Rose.  She definitely did get the blood moving, and that is exactly what I needed right now.

She uses strong/powerful and slow movements that really make a difference.  I've had many massages, and I never experienced a proper deep tissue massage.  Sure it's slightly tense and painful, but that's because my muscles are very tight from lack of exercise and abuse (by moi lol).  Now 4 hours after the massage, I feel like I could sleep all night.  When I tell you that this is therapeutic, that's a bit of an understatement.  I am so glad that my friends recommended Rose to me, and I am doing the same.  I booked another appointment for 2 weeks later, and I can't wait!

For information about her and bookings, please go to her website

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Here we go again...Another Debenhams Beauty Sale

I am the first to openly admit that I am a sucker for sales.  I guess I'm a Marketing Director's target, as I always wait until there are sales in order to purchase anything beauty related.  It is super rare that I buy anything on a whim.  Here we go again with Debe's newest beauty sale.  It's nothing new, but here are the details.

10% off anything, plus an additional 500 bonus points with any purchase over £40 (remember this has to be one transaction) and then an additional 500 bonus points with £40 worth of items from a select few brands.

I have my eye on the new Guerlain highlighter, so I'm going to decide today whether or not to bite the bullet and purchase it.  I'm only hesitant to buy it as I just won the Cruel gardenia highlighter off of ebay (for under retail)!!!!!!!!!!! I feel like I'm becoming a Guerlain highlighter collector.

Sale ends June 17th, but if you miss it, I'm sure there will be another one, so not to fret my dears. is going to be an easy day as I am working from home today.  I got a ton of spring cleaning to do (what's up with this awesome weather UK folks? Today is divine!) and a ton of catching up to do with emails and such.   I feel like I'm just worn thin in all aspects of my life, but I rather be busy like this than bored :)

So who's taking advantage of the sale? What's on your shopping list?


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Tom Ford Ultra Shine Lip Gloss in 02 Rose Crush

Today's review is on a product that took me months to purchase.  It took me this long not only due to it's hefty price tag, but the fact that I couldn't make up my mind which colour and whether or not I should splurge on a lipgloss.  I'm sure many of you have been there.  You ooohhh and awwww at it online, you try to rationalize how you're going to afford it, and then you take a deep breath and quickly check out online as fast as you can before you change your mind :).  That was me for the last few months.  I must look at Tom Ford makeup on a daily basis online.  It's just beautiful to me, and yet it wasn't something that I was ready to spend my hard earned money on.  A year ago, an online friend graced me with some Tom Ford lipsticks, and the rest is history.  I just couldn't stomach the Tom Ford prices, but something kept drawing me to them.

So last week, I finally did it!  I said to myself "Sue, grow up! You need to stop being so wishy washy and just do the damn thing".  So I listened to myself and purchased a lip gloss.  I couldn't decide on the colour, so I decided on a colour that I would wear the most.  If I was going to spend this kind of money, I was going to get the most use out it as possible.  I eventually settled for Rose Crush.  It was the perfect subdued nudey pink that I could find for my skin tone.  I'm very glad that I did get it.

Let me show you the photos first, and then we shall discuss the lipgloss in more detail.

The sun was going down as I snapped this picture.  It is a bit warmer in person, but as you can see, it really is a lovely nude/pink shade.  

The lip gloss is slightly scented with a vanilla hint.  Instantly, I knew it was a familiar scent (MAC lipsticks).  It's not heavy, but it's definitely there.  Rose Crush was very opaque and pigmented.  I wasn't expecting that, but I was happily surprised.

Yes I could go on and on about how much I love the packaging, but that's a given right? We always expect a level of luxury when it comes to these higher end products.  So I'm sure you are wondering...Is it worth the money?  I guess it really depends on what you value.  If you are looking for luxury packaging, this has it.  If you are looking for a pigmented product, this has it.  It definitely isn't an economic purchase, nor will everyone find that it's worth this price, but for me, I find that it delivers everything that I wanted.  I don't know the next moment of insanity that I will have to purchase another one (looking at you Naked and Sahara Pink), but this is the best lip gloss that I have in my stash.  I do want to try an Armani lip gloss before I can say that this is THE best, but for now TF lip gloss reigns supreme amongst my other lippies.

Tom Ford can be purchased at luxury department stores such as Harrods, Selfridges, Neiman Marcus, and Saks.  This is not wallet friendly, but it's a little piece of heaven, especially if you love your lippies.

Next up is the Tom Ford eyeshadow quads.  I definitely don't have the budget to purchase it, so it's coming from the states through a swap, so it might be a few weeks before I can do a review.  So check back later for that review.

All I have to say is that I've been on a splurging spree. I got to chill.....and stat lol! 2 Guerlain lipsticks, this lip gloss, and I finally nabbed the Guerlain Cruel Gardenia off of evilbay.  Yep, my wallet is hating me right about now.  Plus, I want to get the new Chanel polish in Holiday next week as well.  I guess I will be packing my lunch all next week and the week after (and the week after that too lol). Chat with you all later :)

and my jam!

Kraftwerk - Numbers

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Nail RAOK Package - Barry M Indigo, Mint Green, and Max Factor Odyssey Blue

There is nothing as fun as nail mail.  I have three awesome nail polishes to show you due to a very sweet friend of mine.  I'm excited, so I'm just going to go ahead and stop talking and show them to you.

Max Factor - Odyssy Blue
Barry M - Indigo Blue
Barry M - Mint Green

Barry M's Indigo is my favourite of all the Barry M colours, and yet I never pulled the trigger to purchase it for myself.  My friend said that this was fantastic and she had to get it for me.  She was right.  It's a true indigo and completely opaque with one coat.  Just brillant.

Mint Green is the perfect colour for this season.  I actually already owned a bottle, and I welcome this back up bottle to my collection :) This is a two coat opaque polish.

Odyssy Blue is the under-appreciated polish from Max Factor.  It came out the same time as Fantasy Fire, and it doesn't get the love it deserves.  This is a gorgeous teal duochrome polish that flashes purple.  It is a beauty and holds its own up against Fantasy Fire.

I wasn't able to grab a good photo and the sun was going down and I just couldn't capture it's beauty.  I will have to do a NOTD shortly.  

I really loved my raok package and a huge THANK YOU to my friend xx

Keyshia Cole - I remember

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

I woke up this morning with a cold and recovering from a strange and horrific dream.  I thought about the people in my past, especially those surrounding my childhood and I felt really horrible.  I kept thinking about all my wrong doings, and how I wish I could have made it right, but you really can't, can you?  So, a part of me was dreading to this make this Mother's Day call.

The irony of this day is that I wasn't able to say all I wanted to say to my own mother, so I'm writing this and putting it out there for the world to know. Today was indeed a bittersweet day for me.  I made several attempts to call my mom to tell her that I love her and that I wished her a Happy Mother's Day, and when I finally got through to her all I got was this odd tension on the other end, so I just politely said Happy Mother's Day, made small insignificant chit chat, and I ended the call short.  I actually thought to myself earlier that I shouldn't bother to call her, as she's always moaning to me about how expensive International calls could be, but I felt compelled to still make the call. What I wanted to tell her was how much I loved her.  We never told each other that, and I wish we could.  Love is an interesting thing between my mother and I.  In theory, I know she loves me and I hope she knows that I love her too, but we have a strange relationship to say the least.

I hold onto some memories of my mother, both good and bad, but she's still my mother and I feel so much love and sympathy for her.  As I get older, the resentment starts to subside, and I do feel that quiet bond between us.  She's not very affectionate, but somehow I know she loves me.

Memories are all I have to base my love on.  Such as the time when I was little and I woke up in the middle of the night and I told her that I was hungry.  She brought me two fried eggs and a dollop of rice, and I remember thinking that it was the best meal I ever had.  In fact, when I feel like I need some type of comfort food, I fry eggs and eat it with rice.  It's strange how I relive that comforting moment with her into my adulthood.  Or the time when I was living in the streets as a teenager, and she found a way to leave me some money at this shop that she knew I would be at.  She always found her way of showing me she loved me, no matter how unconventional it was.  Every good moment is followed by a bad one, but I fight everyday to remember just the good ones, because after all, love is about forgiveness isn't' it? 

This woman that taught me about sacrifice, hard work, and frankly taught me how to live each day and fight for what you love, no matter how hard it seems.  Happy Mother's Day mom. Even though, I know you'll never read this. I do love you even if I can't find the courage to tell you.

My Monthly Rejects

Do you know what I mean when I say a product was a Long haul?  You know, those products that you hate but don't want to waste, so you use it but it feels like it takes FOREVER to finish?  Well, I got two of those types of products to review today. 

Let me start off by saying that I didn't pay full retail for either products (thank god!) nor did I buy them at a shop, otherwise I would have returned it immediately.  I had no choice but to use it as it's very hard to sell used bath & hair products online, so I just grin and bear it last month, and I'm ready to unleash my honest review about these products.

The two culprits are:
Aveda's Shampure Conditioner and Baylis & Harding balancing body wash

I take no pleasure in writing a poor review on any product, but I can't help but feel cheated out of my hard earned cash, so I must tell my readers about my experience to these products.

Let me start off with the Aveda product.  I absolutely love Aveda. I love their products, their ethos...I mean seriously I should be an Aveda spokesperson.  I just don't understand what happened with this product.  Perhaps, I got a bad batch.  All I know is that I love Aveda's shampure scent, and roughly two years ago I used the shampure shampoo and I loved how cleansing it was.  So naturally when I saw this conditioner going on ebay, I bid on it instantly.  The conditioner left my hair feeling brittle, dry and flat.  I have thin short hair, and I was just shocked at how my hair could be both dry, brittle AND flat.  I did all variations of application of this product.  I used a little one time, I used a lot the next time.  It didn't matter the length of time that I left it on; absolutely nothing worked for me.  So having doing all that, I realised that it wasn't my application, it was the product.  It did absolutely nothing for me, in fact I think I had the worst hair days when I used this product.  Sadly, I'll never be buying this hair conditioner again. 

Retail:  £36.50 for 1 liter
So obviously that's a lot of wasted money right there.

The next product that I was disappointed by was the Baylis & Harding sweet mandarin balancing body wash.  Fair enough, I haven't tried any other body wash to compare.  I have no complaints about the scent, as what it says it is, is exactly what it is.  You get a lightly scented sweet citrus body wash, which I always tend to like.  It was the texture and lather that left me very disappointed.  The texture was this gloopy almost jelly like substance that didn't lather as well as I thought it would.  I tried this product as I have seen this brand being carried in a lot of shops.  I was shocked that the body wash felt too mass produced in quality to rationalise the price that they ask for this.  

So that was my money wasted this month.  Ahhh, the life of a product junkie :)

A quick update

It feels like forever since I last blogged. I finally got a day off of work today and of course I have a cold.  The sun is also out and it's a beautiful here in England, and of course I'm inside in sweats and a jumper trying to stay warm.  Life is funny sometimes.

I am running into a problem where I have way too many products, I can not even begin to tell you the amount of beauty products that are in stored away in boxes. I don't even have anymore space to store products.  So I have been trying every avenue to sell or give away some products.  I'll be updating my blog sale soon, so watch out for that.

Other than that, I'll have some swatches and reviews soon to come.

Someone asked me recently what I've been lemming for recently and they have to be Strangebeautiful's new set called Inept laundress.  Inept laundress is a series of whites, grieges and off whites.  It's basically the colour spectrum of your whites after your laundry mistakes.  Genuis!  It's really the little things and the way that she captures everyday life in a bottle that wins my heart (and my wallet) everytime.  The other wishlist item that I've been lemming really hard for is the Tom Ford eyeshadow quad in Golden Mink.  Yes...I know it's not practical or even wise to purchase something so out of my budget range, but it doesn't stop this girl from wanting it LOL!

Anyways, going to walk Oscar and try to take some more cold medicine and I should be back soon with some swatches.  Hold Tight! :)  xx

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Thank you!

Just wanted to send out a quick message into cyberland for those who bid on my ebay auction to help raise money for my local RSPCA.  I was able to raise £17, where £12.80 of that went to the RSPCA.  Sure it's not a lot of money, but every little bit helps.  That money will feed a dog or cat now for a month, or help pay for shots, or help reimburse someone's travel to go and socialize and play with the them. So thank you for those who bid on the Gosh Holographic.  It was a wonderful polish to own, but my heart and mind feels so much more at peace knowing that I did a little something to help a lonely and abandoned animal.  That feeling is 100% better than any nail polish could ever do for me :)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Topshop Freedom Jewellery Haul

It's no surprise that I have a weakness for the massive UK fashion house Topshop. It also doesn't help that I have to pass one everyday to get my bus to go home. Some days when I need a pick me up, I just run in there and see if there is a sale going on in the jewellery units...and 9 times out of 10, there is lol

I literally had 5 minutes to pick, check out, and run to my bus.  These are my new beauties. I love them (goes without saying) and they were all £3.50 each with the exception of the gold ring which was £2.50.

I finally have a day off tomorrow, but of course it doesn't mean I have time to lounge about...sigh. I will be up early, taking Oscar to the groomers, and then working for the rest of the afternoon. It's definitely not going to feel like a day off.

Let me know if you've been doing any hauls? I've love to see, SHOW N TELL! ;)

Today's Tune of the day is actually the record you see behind the jewellery.
Roni Size - Watching Windows ( Ed Rush & Optical rmx)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

This week's charity shopping haul

Eck, I forgot to publish this post like ages ago, but it's just a quick post about some more charity items that I bought.Both items were purchased for a whopping grand total of 50p lol.  I love them, because they both speak to the 80's kid in me. 

God, I love charity shopping.  


Spring Cleaning? or Spring Hauling?

Hello beautiful ladies! The sun finally peeked here after 8 (or was it 9?) days of rain.  I have been working my a$$ off, and basically have been consumed with trying to keep up with everything going on with my life.  Although, I'm finding myself being spread out thin, I'm still chugging along :)

I have been doing some massive Spring cleaning and spring hauling this past week, and I'm finally getting around to showing you some of my bargain garments that I actually scored in the last 2 weeks.  Sorry beauty addicts, my beauty purchases have come to a complete halt as I went a little overboard and went over my budget last month. Having said that, I can't wait until May 11th and May 25th when the new Chanel nail polishes hit the UK!  I am also drooling over the new Strangebeautiful sets (which aren't available yet over here).  I can't wait until I can one day get my paws on these.

Ok, so here are my new clothes.  I have no desire to drop big cash on clothes these days as I'm getting my clothes so dirty at work, and so I'm always looking for cheap goodies.

First up, my new Alexander Wang jacket.  I was so excited for this jacket to arrive, and once it arrived I have to admit that I was a bit disappointed in the quality of the item.  The design is so freaking cool, but it wasn't as tailored as I thought it would be.  It easily looses its' shape....luckily I didn't drop heavy cash on this, so I can't really complain.  I'm not sure about the retail, but it's AW, so I'm assuming it retailed well over £150 easy, I paid £25.  I'm still trying to figure out where and how I'm going to wear this unique blazer jacket.

Next item is a Vince silk dress that I picked up from TK Maxx for £29.  A similar dress is going for £315 on NetaPorter.  This dress feels like heaven, and I couldn't resist the bargain.  I also wanted something more "summer" and I'm trying my best to wear colour.  

New Look was having this massive sale, and the leopard dress that I actually wanted was sold out, so I tried to console myself and bought this number for £8.  Cute and simple, but it's one of those things that after 20+ washes, it will be binned probably :/

Here's another purchase from TKMaxx.  This cardigan is from Les Folies.  It reminded me of Sonia Rykiel, but for £16, I could live with myself...although, I would die for a real Sonia Rykiel cardigan :)

This skirt was bought from my charity shop.  It was brand new with tag and from the Marks & Spencer's limited edition line.  I paid around £2 for it :)

So those are just a few items that I picked up.  I just ordered the Vivienne Westwood rain boots that I have been lemming for, so once those come, I'll do another post.

In the meanwhile, please head over to my ebay auction, if you are interested in the Gosh Holographic nail polish, and also interested in helping out the RSPCA. Thank you :)

So, have you been doing massive Spring Cleaning? or Spring Hauling?

Until next time, take it ez lovelies!


Janet Jackson - Velvet Rope