19 July 2014

OOTD | Urban Outfitters Ditsy Print Jersey Slip Dress

Dress: Urban Outfitters
Bag: Zara City
Shoes: Primark
Sunglasses: Primark

This evening's outfit post features a beautiful dress from the Urban Outfitters sale. Everywhere has sale at the moment... tempting I KNOW! When UO have their sale, I feel their prices are a bit more justifiable and I end up going crazy in the store.

The super stretchy jersey material that makes up this flower printed dress is so comfy to wear! A perfect summer essential that does not add much weight to your baggage if taking it on holiday.
I wore this dress for an evening out along the coast of Hampshire a few weeks ago and even got a few compliments. I must say I love down south but I appreciate how much nicer the water is up north.

I love this dress even more everytime I wear it and it looks so cute with these simple pointed flats which I have featured quite a few times now on my blog. Maybe next time with heels ey? Who knows :)
The city bag is a must when I travel as it certainly is a case of 'Mary Poppins' when I try to pack lightly... oops.

I hope you having a great weekend! I'm just keeping myself sheltered from the thunder, lightning and rain!


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18 July 2014

New | Lush Leeds Store Opening

Yesterday I had the pleasure of being invited down to my local Lush Store in the centre of Leeds for the grand new opening at their VIP launch. Just across the street from where they used to be but by far a lot bigger and a much more suitable size for the big city of Leeds. The previous store was just so small. A larger shopping basket much needed too.
It was great talking to the store manager, pr's and forever lovely bubbly workers. They surely do make your lush shopping experience a great one!

Whilst we had a good look around the shop floor, we were offered drinks and nibbles. The cheese cake was incredibly yummy! They had sample bath bombs in jugs that they let us have a sniff of. I felt bad that everything seemed to smell so edible, mmmm.

It was great to see an old school friend working there and so we had quite an interesting chat about the massage bars and life. It's my mum's birthday coming up soon so I think I'm going to include a massage bar in a hamper set for her and no doubt an obligatory massage to go with it >_< haha. What I did learn is that there are scented mattifying powders for after your massage. This reduces the excessive oils on your skin. What a great idea.

The part I most got excited about was making my own lush comforter. I think I am an official compounder... joke, but I didn't do too bad.

I also got chance to see downstairs in their four room spa which was so welcoming and homely. Yes- of course everyone should have this space in their basement :) The waiting area has the comfiest chairs to relax before or after your treatments.

I have a previous post here which shares some of the treatments they offer.
The treatment that stood out to me yesterday was the Hard Days Night Treatment. This is a treatment with the coolest music playing in the background whilst you wear pyjamas and get a massage that releases all your tensions. This is done with different stretching techniques my the masseuse.  It is believed to stretch you in places you never knew you could be stretched before! This was done in their new double room which is great for treatments as a couple, friends or bonding time with your mum/relative.

Did you know they also have a luscious bath downstairs in one of their treatment rooms? Seriously, would you want to leave after such an experience? haha

Thanks again Lush Ltd for inviting me and for the fab new products to try out!

This Leeds Lush store opened today at 10am on 12-13 Commercial Street, so do pop down and experience the new transformed store!

Will you be visiting this store when you're next in Leeds?

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13 July 2014

OOTD | Topshop Denim Skort and Basic T-Shirt

T Shirt: Topshop
Denim Skort: Topshop
Shoes: Topshop
Bag: River Island

Today's post includes an item that everyone should have and not be afraid to pair with different interesting pieces. You guessed it from the title, basic t-shirts! I know this is not your typical Summer coloured top but if you want a timeless t-shirt, £5 in the Topshop sale was too much of a steal for me to refuse.

Shorts until a while ago have become my best friends. This is simply because I seem to be finding the perfect ones that suit my shape and most importantly make me feel comfortable in. You would think this denim wonder was a skirt however they are indeed culotte styled shorts. Breezy for the hot days I have been blessed to enjoy for the past week. :D

The shoes are still my favourite ever since my 'Graduation Ball' outfit post and the bag is still ranking high in my books.

I hope you are having a fabulous weekend :)

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Event | The Great Yorkshire Show 8th July with Hobbs London

Yesterday I attended the opening day of one of Yorkshire's biggest events 'The Great Yorkshire Show'. This year was it's 156th year!! The three day event 8th- 10th July is a premier agricultural event celebrating farming and country life at a showground in Harrogate. From fashion to livestock there was certainly something for everyone!!

I had the pleasure of attending as press along with Hobbs to see their catwalk shortly after browsing in their Harrogate store. Here I met up with some lovely girls whilst we had a great chit chat over tea and biscuits. You can find their blog/vlog links below. I remembered going to the Hobbs shop in Bicester village a few weeks ago and just admiring their luxury, simple yet elegant pieces.

Me | Bryony | Rachel | Samantha

The live catwalk featured some of their beautiful summer inspired prints that are and upcoming autumn winter items. Other brands included Barbour, Max Mara, designers from Doncaster College and North Allerton College. I loved the music the models were dancing to and I could tell everyone else did too!
My favourite out of the Brook Taverna designs had to be the dress on the right.

I did not quite appreciate the large scale of the event until I actually viewed the landscape from the ferris wheel. It was literally breath taking! The weather was lovely for the first part of the day so we watched the horse shows, pigs, sheep, cows, rabbits... which I must say were very cute. The Countess of Wessex made an appearance in the morning and really conjured up a large crowd of all ages at the showground.

There were organic food stands, local produce tasting, country clothing stalls, car brands such as Mercedes, ice cream vans.... everything. I got a little too excited at the prospects of buying a combine harvester browsing the machinery aisle :s
We enjoyed Yorkshire tea, sandwiches, listened to music on the grounds and enjoyed the atmosphere.

This was certainly a great day that was enjoyed by all! I think events like this should run into the weekend so everyone can experience it.

I will definitely be back to visit this event next year as it was a great outing. Thanks Hobbs London for inviting me!

Did you like some of the current Hobbs pieces?

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06 July 2014

OOTD | Crochet Top and Pointed Flats

Crochet Top: Select
Bandeau: Primark 
Skirt: George at Asda
Shoes: Primark
Bag: Zara
Sunglasses: Primark

A perfect crochet top has been on my wish list for the longest time now. Not anymore!! As summer holidays are fast approaching, I was so happy to find one that fits perfectly. If you are skilled enough to crochet your own, hats off to you but if you can't, Select is the place to shop. The side cut on the shoulders looks so flattering as well at the gorgeous circular pattern at the front.
This look would be amazing on a beach setting with a bikini or tank top under it. As you can see I wore a black bandeau. A simple black and white skirt with flats finished off this casual summer look.

I hope you are having a fab weekend! I had so much fun at Imats last weekend and if you want to see my haul, check it out here :)
In Yorkshire everyone has gone Tour de France crazy and it was so nice to see families come out in their numbers and support the 'Grand Depart' event.

Festivities of celebrating what Yorkshire has to offer will continue at the Great Yorkshire Show 8th-10th July. This is England's Premier agricultural event celebrating farming and country life which sounds exciting. I will be going along with Hobbs to enjoy their fashion show, races and everything Yorkshire :) Lets hope the weather is beautiful :)
If you want to go, you can buy your tickets here.

Do you like the crochet top look?

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04 July 2014

Imats London 2014 Haul and Experience

This year I attended IMATS London 2014 as press which allowed me to enjoy the so called 'makeup heaven' on a large scale. This was my second time attending so I had a pretty good idea of what the atmosphere would be like. If you want to see my imats haul 2013 click here. The first time I attended, I did go all out on a crazy scale wanting to try any and everything. This year I was a little bit more selective with what I purchased but still loved every minute of it.

I made it my first priority to visit some stands like Nars, Velour Lashes, Love Makeup and Make-up forever as I knew I had to buy certain things which I will show you soon. I never ever thought I had the will power to do such thing, but I avoided the NYX stand. The queue was just sooo long all day so I just thought... nahh. You can buy all of those reasonably priced items online and in Next shops.

Throughout the day there were some weird and wonderful make-up artist creations which I managed to capture.

Starting off with Nars which was not as full as last year's humongous 60% discount crazed counter. They had 30% off this year with a limited amount of products and quite a few gift sets. There was nothing I had a burning urge to get but when I saw the beautifully coloured 13g Pierre Hardy blush in 'Boys Don't Cry' I simply could not put this £18 set back down! The peachy-orange toned blush was so eye catching. I also bought a concealer 'Praline' and the 'Velvet Matte Lip Pencil with Sharpener' gift set for £15.

At Love Make-up I bought another Limecrime lipstick as I 100% love my poisonberry one. This time I got the 'Centrifuchsia' shade which is a bright blue-toned pink and was £10. I also got the Velvetine liquid to matte lip stain in 'wicked' for £10. This is a dark red shade which has an amazing lasting power. I dont usually like matte finishes or red lip products so this was definitely a weird purchase for me :s One of my top two fave purchases of the weekend was the

Zoeva brushes! In my head I must have imagined them to be extremely
expensive and not worth purchasing but oh my I couldn't have been more wrong. Not only were they £8 / £8.50 each but they are super super soft and are made of good quality. The rose gold set which was well advertised for a discounted price before the show was sold out long time before I got to it but in all honesty I didn't need all of the brushes in it. I did buy the 106 powder brush to replace my overworked Avon one, 102 silk finish brush for foundation blending and the 127 Luxe Sheer Cheek for blush.

I visited the Beautiful Brows stand which was mainly for my mum who wanted to try a new brow product. As much as I wanted to try them out in the past, I remember last year them being over priced for what I could see. I took the plunge this time and for a small square of eyebrow cake 'chocolate' and three part stencil set it was £20. I believe £30 for the whole set with a brush and compact. I will have to check in with her to see how she likes it!

I had a browse around Mac Pro stand being the lipstick addict that I am and I even got matched to a new foundation by a lovely Mac assistant. Lots of people don't tend to love this stand at imats due to the small discounts issued and the fact they mainly have their pro products available. Their pro makeup include blue, yellow, red and more liquid paints etc :o But having a pro card I was able to get 35% rather than the set 10%. So I saved £20 on the Studio Fix Fluid NW48, 'Candy yum-yum' and 'Sin' lipsticks. Guess what finishes the lipsticks were in? Matte >_< The mac talk by Pablo Rodriguez a senior makeup artist was really interesting to see how catwalks and editorial shoots are done.

Sugarpill was at imats for the first time this year and seeing the shopping bags that came with the products... I was sold even more to make a purchase. The pro palette looks amazing and is so pigmented but I dont even know what on earth I would do with all the vibrant colours. I did buy a single eyeshadow called 'poison plum' which would be a great crease colour and maybe even a subtle contour shade for darker skin tones.

Last year at Make-up Forever I bought the HD foundation which my sister took over and loved more then myself as I fell out of love with. So I repurchased for my sister and bought two foundations for my mum and one for a friend. Its a good thing I knew what shades I was getting as getting in close proximity to swatch was near to impossible and the sellers seemed to be catering to the needs of customers who just joined after me. It was all very chaotic so I was glad to get away from there. The foundations were £19.87 each.

The girls at Velour Lashes were so friendly and helpful which made the lash stand even more appealing to me. Finally I can purchase a pair because last year, I mistook the price to be £40 instead of £14 for a pair which scared me right off without double checking! Now that would have been steep.  I picked up the 'complete me' set which are more dense on the outer corners and less so on the inner parts. You can get up to 25 applications of these real mink lashes in the same condition as brand new, so I am beyond excited to try these.

Last year I was very happy with my Inglot rainbow eyeshadows so I knew I had to get some more. This was either going to be on a bigger scale or a small scale with everyday colours. I went with the second option. I bought a quad magnetic case for £5 and four eyeshadows for £3 each. I got the shades 399, 450, 421 and 402. All of these have a pearl finish which are AMAZING!!

I didn't want to go too crazy at Crown Brush as the prices tend to be very similar to online, but I loved the thin angle definers so bought four, and extra double ended one with a smoolie and the C139 crease brush. This all came up to under £20.

I went lash crazy at Nigel's Beauty Emporium as I had regrets last year as I felt I didn't buy enough. This year I bought 15 lashes for £20. I mainly went for Whispy's, D-Whispy's, #217, 747s, 307, 43 and #367. I also got a white duo glue for £5.

Overall this year was a successful shopping trip at Imats and possibly a lot better than last year. No more makeup for me... who am I kidding? More pictures can be seen on my instagram @mintyessence.

Did you go to London Imats this year?

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