Florabundance: April 2010

27 April 2010

HELP! GIVEAWAY INCLUDED!

Hey everyone, so I need to ask you all for a bit of help.

I am a media student at university and as part of my feature writing module I am writing a feature on 'why the modern day women is starting to turn to beauty blogs over the beauty pages of a magazine'.

For this, I need a plethora of opinions and quotes from you ladies (and gents, maybe!)

As a thank you I will be doing a giveaway. I will enter all your info into a word doc and then use randomizer.org to pick a winner. The prize will be a Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow in the shade Birthday Suit. It is my ultimate favourite eye product - it's so pretty, is versatile and it's great for those mornings when I'm in a big rush because it's so quick and easy to use.

(I'm using Ulta's stock image as I have yet to buy the product!)

So what I want you to do is email me at lydiaoc26@hotmail.com telling me exactly why you prefer to read beauty blogs over beauty pages in a magazine.
Please include your full name (so I can quote your answers) and tell me if you are a blogger, a reader, or a blogger and a reader! If you don't include this, I can't use your quote and therefore you will not be entered into the giveaway. The giveaway ends Saturday 1st May at 10am BST (British Summer Time).

Thanks in advance, please please please help me out!!!

Lydia xox


23 April 2010

Hair History!

Hey everyone, I just realised I haven't blogged in ages so it was well overdue for me to write a post!

This is a tag that went around ages ago, but I never had access to a scanner to get photos on here. The other day I had a genius idea where I took photos of my photos - and it didn't work out too bad either!

There is a lack of ones from me as a kid mainly because I don't want them available on the internet.

So below is my first one, aged around 8 I think. As you can see I have naturally blonde hair - which I would do anything to get back right now! I'm not sure I even realised I had blonde hair at the time? Oh the joys of being a careless kid :)

As I got older, my hair started to darken and I had a LOT of blonde ambition so I started bleaching my hair around the age of 13 - I think this was taken when I was 13, on holiday in Greece. I think I have a bit of 'old-school Kendra Wilkinson' hair going on here - white blonde and kinda bushy! Haha!

I continued to bleach my hair - and my hair surprisingly kept strong. How it wasn't majorly damaged, I'll never know! Below is me around 14-15.


When I was 15 I decided to dye my hair dark. WORST.DECISION.EVER! I actually cried when I saw it for the first time. Look how much it washes me out in the photo below. I will never be venturing to the dark side ever again, and that is a promise :P


Because I hated the brown so much, I quickly reverted to highlights - slowly working my way back blonde. This was the summer of when I was 15, on holiday in Ibiza.

When I finally got back to the perfect highlighted blonde, I got a bit rebellious and decided to dye underneath my fringe turquoisey-blue. How embarrassing! I was still 15 here.


Below is me at 16 - on my last day of school. I succumbed and went back to the bleach. I just loved having white hair so frickin' much - haha! I also have some extensions in here ready for my prom hairstyle the next evening.


The next photo is me at 17. My hair is pure white and I love how it looks here. It had gotten pretty long again and was in surprisingly great condition.



My hair stayed as white as snow all through my 18th year of life too. But soon the bleach started to take its toll, and I knew I had to give it up one day. So I reverted back to highlights. It's an ongoing journey that I'm still on. I added in heaps of golden blonde and little bits of brunette to balance it out, and I had to cut my hair a little to save it from damage. I've never been happier - hands down best thing I've ever done to my hair.
The photo below is of me about 2 months ago (my hair is the same now, only a little longer!) A lot of my natural hair colour now shows through, and I get highlights put in once every 8 weeks. It's much more low maintenance.

So there is my hair history.

If you haven't done this post yet, be sure to do it and let me know :)

Lydia xox

15 April 2010

Illamasqua Gift

Hi everyone! I was soo excited the other day when this arrived at my front door!

It was the Illamasqua gift box which was sent to the people who were meant to be attending the Illamasqua event that sadly got cancelled.

I was incredibly impressed with the packaging, this sleek black box that was sealed with a bow looks fantastic. It is also environmentally friendly as I will be using this box for some storage instead of throwing it out like regular packaging!

Inside was their new Liquid Metal in 'Surge' and their new nail varnish in Jo'Mina.
Also included was a poster of their beautiful new Body Electrics imagery, and a brochure showing their new products that have come out with the Body Electrics collection - which you can check out online here!

Illamasqua nail paint in Jo'Min and Liquid Metal in Surge. (No flash, natural light)


Just one swatch of Liquid Metal Surge on my fingertip - SO pigmented.

I got way too excited when the package arrived, and smudged the Liquid Metal all over my lid just to test it out! It's so pretty. I can't wait to start playing about with this alongside my other Liquid Metals that I have in my collection.

Above: Jo'Mina without the flash.

Above: Jo'Mina with the flash.

I think neither of the photos have captured the true, gorgeousness of this nail polish. It is a pale purple, but bright at the same time. It's dark and pastel at the same time and I love that.

I'm so grateful and happy with what Illamasqua have sent me. Big thanks to Alex Cummins!

Lydia xox

12 April 2010

Lisa Taubes 42inch Silver Necklace

Hi everyone!

I ordered my Lisa Taubes 42" Sterling Silver chain necklace about 3 weeks ago now from Lorraine's blog and it got to me super quick (less than a week) but I forgot to blog about it. So here is my slightly delayed post.

This little box was sent to me:


Below: inside - the necklace carefully wrapped with paper and a cute little thank you card! How thoughtful!



Below: How the 42inch sterling silver linked chain looks. It was really hard to photograph - the photo doesn't do any justice to how pretty this chain is. It sort of glistens in the light.




And finally, I apologise for this boob shot below but I wanted to show you how I like to wear the chain! This is the 42 inch chain doubled over once.



I just love how it's so simple and can be worn with literally everything! I love big, unusual jewellery but for days when I'm in a rush this is so easy to slip on. It instantly adds something to an outfit. I love this so much that I am tempted to order the 5ft sterling silver.

Be sure to let me know if you bought one of these, and which one you got! :)

Lydia xox

11 April 2010

Weekend Purchases

Hi everyone, hope you have all had a good weekend! Here is a little blog post for you to nosy at what I bought over the weekend :)


First stop, Chanel! I had been lusting after the 'Les 4 Ombres' eyeshadow quad in 'Mystic Eyes' for quite some time. I hadn't made many make-up purchases this month so I thought why not, I'll treat myself :P

It's a truly gorgeous palette and all the colours are wearable and suitable to combine together. Also, the colour pay-off is fantastic (but so it should be for the price, eh!)

Below: close up of the palette.


Next up is Primark. Firstly I have to say I don't want to step on the toes of bloggers who choose to regularly shop at Primark. I do admit I am a little bit of a label snob, but the main reason I never shop at Primark is because I don't agree with their brand ethics - one word, EXPLOITATION! Plus, I would much rather spend more on clothes that are of much better quality.

Anyhoo and anyhow, I did pick up two items that I thought would come in handy over the summer.

First, this floral skirt which cost £5.


And secondly, more floral goodness - dress, £9.


And lastly, the photo below captures my Friday evening. Lush Butterball bath bomb, Vanilla Cupcake Yankee Candle and Skinny Bitch book. It was lovely indeed!

After trying my first Yankee Candle, I am ordering a few more for sure. I have also found Skinny Bitch to be an incredibly insightful read. Cannot recommend it enough.


Hope all your weekends were equally as good as mine!

Lydia xox

8 April 2010

Meet My New Kitten and MAC Petals and Peacocks Lipstick!

Hey everyone!

Some of you will know from my Twitter that I had to have my cat Amy put down a few weeks ago. I was heartbroken and the house felt too quiet without a cat so we ended up getting a kitten!

Say hello to Alfie! :




His cuteness is deceiving! He's a right little tinker... only calm when he's snoozing :)


I also want to mention the Petals and Peacocks lipstick from the MAC Liberty of London collection, which I am wearing in the photos above and in the close up photo below.

It is an amplified creme finish which feels lovely and moisturising on the lips. It is a vibrant pink on the lips, but the lipstick itself looks a deep purpley-pink. It's very unique for a bright pink lipstick and I know I am going to wear this a lot on nights out!

That's the only thing that I bought from the Liberty of London collection because nothing else seemed to tickle my fancy. It's a shame because I might be one of the few people who actually love the packaging!

Lydia xox

2 April 2010

March Favourites

Hi everyone, hope you are all enjoying and making the most of this long Easter weekend :)

Here are my five favourites from last month:

YSL Elle - Summer Limited Edition Version
Normally I like to stick to one perfume (Chanel - Chance is my signature scent!) but recently I've been experimenting with lighter, more feminine scented perfumes. I'd used up a bottle of the original YSL Elle about two summers ago and loved it. This new summer limited edition of it is the same scent but the fruity notes have been heightened. It smells fresh yet girly. I love it!

John Frieda Sheer Blonde Healthy Attitude Nourishing Spray
When I bought my John Frieda shampoo and conditioner there was a 3 for 2 offer on, so I picked this up. It has now become a staple in my haircare routine! I spray this very generously all over to damp hair before hairdyring. I definitely feel like my hair has been feeling a lot healthier due to it. It is a 'nourishing spray' but I guess it is ultimately a leave-in conditioner.

Garnier Fresh Essentials Eye Make-Up Remover
I bought this in Tesco's when I was doing my weekly shop because it was on offer for £2 - I couldn't afford to shell out for my beloved Lancome eye make-up remover at the time. Luckily, this Garnier one has been doing the job just as well as the Lancome one.
Another plus point is that this product is not oil-based and doesn't leave an oily residue behind afterwards. Usually I need to use an oil-based remover because without the oil I don't feel like it removes the make-up thoroughly enough. This is the first oil-free remover I've found that does the job perfectly. Would highly recommend checking this out if you want to save some pennies!

Lancome Art Liner Eyeliner
I bought this a few weeks ago at Debenhams and I have to say it is the easiest liquid eyeliner I've ever used. I haven't quite mastered doing feline-esque flicks with it yet, but I am very impressed with how easy it is to create a thin, neat line across my lashline. It is also easy to create a thicker line - just increase pressure!

MAC 188 Duo-Fibre Brush
I have been using this to apply my foundation every day since I got it. I LOVE how it gives me a lighter application of Mac's Studio Fix Fluid. I also love how it results in me using less product. It blends foundation perfectly when swirled in circular motions lightly against the skin.


I have been a bit tight for money this month, and I think this is reflected in my March faves - 2 out of lot 5 products are drugstore!

Looking forward to reading everyone else's monthly favourites for March,

Lydia xox