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Tuesday, 31 December 2013

December Advertisers, A Little Update & A Happy 2014!

Evening fellow birds! It feels like I've been away from my blog for ages! I'm aware I posted the other day, but I haven't been in my usual routine of taking photos and planning posts and have had a good week off from doing anything blog related.  I reckon it's the longest I've ever 'been away' from my blog - and I say that in quotation marks because I've still been reading everyone elses - I've just taken a teeny-tiny step back from mine over the Christmas period.  Needless to say, you can take the girl away from the blog but you can't take the blog out of the girl - I'm itching to get back to writing regularly and back into my usual swing.  Post-Christmas blogging mojo = back in business!  I have a few 'best of 2013' posts planned as well as a standard 'What I got for Christmas' post - so keep your eyes peeled for those in the next week or so. Maybe a little late on the bandwagon with the Christmas related post - but better late than never, right? Plus - it will give you a sneak peak of what to expect on my blog for the next few months - I'm in beauty blogger heaven with a few new beauty bits to test and try!

Anway, rambling aside, it's time for my final monthly advertisers post (for the time being)... I'm now in my final year of uni so balancing advertising on top of that has become a little difficult - I've been keeping too many plates spinning at once for quite some time! Fear not though,  if you ever want to advertise with me in future, I'm reopening my slots very soon - I'm just taking a little break!  Without further rambling from me, I shall pass you onto the lovely folks who have been sitting in my sidebar for this festive month of December. First up is my exclusive advertiser of the month - the lovely Becks over at thenotsosecretdiary - 'A London lifestyle blog with a bit of everything in between'...
Blog | Instagram - @becksdobson | Bloglovin' | Twitter |

thenotsosecretdiary is a London lifestyle blog, with a bit of everything in between. I started writing it just as I moved to Paris four years it's all about the endless adventure of living in the capital city this side of the Channel. With a whole host of posts on what I get up to, what I wear, who I've been dating and - mostly, at the moment, where I've been eating, it's a little insight into the not so secret life of a 24 year old city-dwelling singleton.  I'm a writer/account manager by day, a blogger by lunch break/weekend and a fly-by-night in the evenings. Living in the best city in the world and dreaming of others, thenotsosecretdiary is my little bit of London and beyond.

Beky | Beky Lou 
Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | BlogLovin'

My name is Beky and I started BekyLou in late September of this year; I've had an overwhelming response it's become such a huge part of my life.  BekyLou is a beauty, fashion and lifestyle blog in which I share all of my beauty fashion loves and lusts with you all, review products and also mix in some personal lifestyle posts such as 'My Journey with Anxiety and Depression', which has been my most viewed and most personal post to dare.  I'd love it if you could take a peep over via my links above and follow - I'm aiming for 200 Bloglovin' followers by the end of January!

Bethany | What She Did
Blog | Twitter | Instagram @whatshedidx | 

Hi!  My name is Bethany and I'm a 23 year old blogger based in Cheshire. Whilst my main passion lies in fashion, I also love beauty and lifestyle too. Because of this my posts tend to be quite eclectic giving you insight into my views on fashion, my fave beauty buys and my fave hotspots!
Chloe | Chloeabelle
Blog | Twitter | Instagram | SheSaidBeauty | Email: |

Hello, I'm Chloe & I'm the blogger behind Chloeabelle.  I've just turned 21 & I'm from Scotland - Glasgow to be precise.  Chloeabelle started out as a wee hobby but became more of a huge passion since November - I can't believe I've been writing my blog for just over two years - blog birthday last & I have loved every minute of it - it's hard to think what I would be doing if I didn't have my blog! - boring.  I have been a lover of make-up since I bought my first black eyeliner inspired by Avril Lavigne & decided to take a Make-up Artist course in 2011 for some extra tips & tricks.
Chloeabelle is mainly about Beauty & my lifestyle - who doesn't love to have a nosey into other's lifes ;) but I do throw in some fashion OOTD's for a mixed variety.  Blogging has dusted off the cobwebs on my photography & artistic skills & also improved my writing skills too. Chloeabelle has given me some amazing opportunities with blogging events where I have met some amazing people, who I can call my friends & the brilliant & friendly blogging community over on Twitter - you are all the best!  I adore my followers & would love to say thankyou for sticking around :) Thankyou for taking the time to read this & visit my blog, I love finding & reading others, so don't hesitate to leave a comment or a tweet with your blog link or even a Hi :) I love talking to new people.

And there we have it, my final advertising bunch for a little while! I've loved offering advertising - not only does it mean I get to discover new blogs too, but I've also made some amazing blogging friends from it as well!  I hope you've all had a wonderful Christmas and don't get too merry tonight for New Year's Eve!

Are you doing much for New Year's Eve tonight?!

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Make Your Own Beauty Box | A Unique Gift Idea

I know what you're thinking - gift ideas?! Get with the times, Beth, Christmas has been and gone!  However, this year, I got a bit creative with some of my Christmas gifts and I really wanted to share one of them with you all.  My favourite idea has to be this little beauty box I put together as a stocking filler for my best friend, Sarah. She's a good'un, and always has been ever since we first met at the school gates over 10 years ago where she told me all about her pet rabbits and love for Steps. She got me through a bit of a cruddy break up earlier in 2013 and sat and ate chocolate and ice cream with me in true Bridget Jones' style whilst I harped on about all of my 'i'll forever be single' woes.  She's listened to me grumble on about uni work and deadlines and came to watch me walk across a stage for all of 10 seconds at my Graduation in November - she's just been an all round good egg. As an avid reader of my blog (hello there, bird!) I thought I'd pick up a few beauty bits I've really enjoyed using over the past couple of years and put together a little selection of things I know she'd use.  She's maybe not as completely obsessed with beauty products as I am, so I tried to pick things I know she'd get a lot of use out of and listened to things she'd mentioned she'd wanted to try in the past.

The star of the show was MUA's 'Heaven and Earth' palette.  Sarah is much more daring than me when it comes to colour on the eyelids, but I thought I'd include a neutral palette as they're so amazingly handy to have.  Neutral colours are a staple in my daily makeup routine and the MUA palettes are really good quality.  I also included an Eyes Lips Face 'Eyeshadow Brush' - its' always good to have a brush handy instead of the fiddly sponge applicators that tend to come with drugstore palettes and the ELF ones are actually pretty good quality.  I also popped in a Barry M Eyeliner in 'White' - I tend to smudge this into the corners of my eyes to brighten them and she'd recently mentioned she wanted to try one.  Sarah's also really into her nail art at the minute so I popped in a H&M Gold Glitter and a Sinful Colours polish in 'Purple Diamond' - I love the Sinful Colours range and she's always loved lilacs and purples so I thought this shade would go down a storm!

As well as this, I also popped in a Charles Worthington Volume Mousse and a little handbag sized Elnett Spray.  One of her other presents was a curling tong so I thought they would make a lovely little addition and travel sized minis are so handy to have! It's no secret that I love a dollop or two of mousse, and Sarah has always wanted to try one - so I figured this would be a great way for her to experiment with some volume and texture without buying a full sized bottle. To finish off my beauty box, I filled it with some iridescent shredded paper and made a little 'what's in the box' card similar to what you'd find in 'proper' beauty boxes.  I found the little black and white box in the Card Factory and thought it was the perfect size to hold all of the beauty bits. I was going to personalise it with photos and lettering but decided against in the end - how could I smudge glue all over that pretty, glittery lid?! A few photographs added in there made the perfect finishing touch and my box was complete.

So there we have it - a lovely little gift idea if you have a birthday coming up soon and are stuck for ideas.  If you have a friend who reads your blog, it's a fabulous personalised idea and they don't even have to be beauty obsessed - a few bits and bobs you know they'd love will make up a lovely beauty package! Boots and Superdrug do a great selection of minis too - so if they travel a lot or you know they're jetting away on holiday soon, it's a great place to start looking for ideas! Of course, I woud have loved to have posted this up on my blog before Christmas - but since madam reads my blog - I thought it best to wait until afterwards. I hope you've all had a lovely Christmas and are looking forward to the New Year! I'm thinking of doing a 'What I Got for Christmas' post soon as I know a lot of you like reading them (as do i - nosey so and so!).  If I don't manage to post again before New Year's Eve - *raises imaginary champagne glass* - here's to 2014 and another year of blogging goodness! 

Did you put together a little beauty package for someone this year?

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

The Urban Decay Naked3 Palette | Review, Swatches & Photographs

First off, a big Merry Christmas Eve to you all! I hope you've all had a fabulous day and are now enjoying some good ol' festive telly and the first pickings of the Quality Street tin.  I've had a little walk around a local garden centre today (sounds rubbish but I'll have you know it's one of the best garden centres I've ever been to and it always looks amazingly Christmassy!) I ended up slipping a couple of decorations into my basket and realised when I got home that they were all bird themed in some way shape or form. Woops! Anway, I did have a jolly good festive post planned for today but it didn't quite work out how I'd imagined - so, instead, I thought I'd post about my newest addition to my palette collection - the Urban Decay Naked3 Palette.  If you were thinking of treating yourself to it after Christmas, then hopefully this post might be of some use.  I could just end the post here because it doesn't really need any words, does it? Just look at it! In all its rose gold, sparkly, glittery glory...

I told myself I really didn't need the third palette. Although, when they started selling out everywhere online and in-store (released just before Christmas - brilliant timing ;)), I couldn't resist any longer and snapped one up at House of Fraser with student discount as quick as humanly possible.  I use my Naked Palettes to death - I don't think there's a single day I've done my makeup and not used at least one shade from them.  I even take them on holiday with me.  Yep. It's love! If you've never tried Urban Decay eyeshadows then I really recommend them. They're hands down my most favourite shadows ever - in my opinion - they're hard to beat! I preferred the Naked2 ever so slightly over the first Naked palette, and so when I saw the third version with its rose gold tones and similar taupes - I had to snap it up.  Rose gold tones can be difficult to wear, but these ones aren't overly pink and are much easier to wear than what I first thought they would be... So what are the shades I hear you say? Here goes:

I won't provide a run-through of every single shade - as you can easily see for yourself in the photographs above (and there's been plenty of posts about this palette all over the bloggosphere already), but I thought I'd mention a few of my instant favourites! I adore the shade 'Half Baked' from the first 2 Naked Palettes, and am a massive fan of 'Chopper' from the second (a lovely antique gold) so I was instantly taken by 'Trick' - a stunning true rose gold colour.  'Buzz', 'Burnout' and 'Dust' all stand out to me as perfect everyday shades and are perfect to wear for uni with either 'Limit' or 'Nooner' - the two matte brown shades - blended into the crease.  The 2 matte brown shades in this palette seem to have a plummy undertone to them, compared to the taupe and warmer brown tones included in the first 2 palettes - so bare this in mind if you struggle to get on with plum colours and tones on your eyes! It's not always the most flattering! The other star of the show for me, has to be 'Blackheart' - it's unlike any colour I've seen in the palettes before. It's a beautiful deep brown/almost black colour with purpley-red flecks of glitter running through it (you can see it more clearly in the photographs below).  This will definitely be a main component in any smokey eye I decide to create over the festive season! I love it!

I have to apologise that my swatches are hard to decipher - but it's incredibly hard to photograph an arm full of swatches (although I think I deserve a gold star for managing not to twist my arm in the process...) I thought I'd pop them up there anyway so you can see how all the shades work together and compliment each other. The lightest shade in the palette (a matte creamy white called 'Strange' which can't really be seen on the swatches) doesn't show up too well on my arm anyway and isn't too noticeable on my eyelids - but it would make a lovely subtle highlight.  All the shadows are incredibly pigmented and creamy - and only require a quick dab of a brush in order to achieve a good colour pay off. I didn't expect anything less from Urban Decay - they always get it spot on!

As well as the palette (which comes packaged in a lovely box - always important!), you also get 4 weeks worth of different eyeshadow primers to try (not pictured) - I love their primer potions so this was a welcome addition into the box for me!  The brush is also the best one I've received in a palette so far.  It's double-ended and very similar to the Naked2 brush, but less dense and easier to use for blending.  It also seems slightly softer to me.  I also have to mention the tin the palette comes in - I much preferred the sturdy packaging of the Naked2 over the Original so I was really happy to see they'd continued this through the the Naked3.  It contains the same big mirror and is still fairly lightweight if you tend to travel with palettes. The interesting wavy shaped indentations over the lid make it even more unique and help set it aside from the Naked2.

Overall - I'm so glad I bought the Naked3 palette.  I wear their shadows on a daily basis so for me, it really is a fabulous purchase and one I know I'll get plenty of use out of!  I can see myself using the left-hand side more than the right (but i guess this is true for all 3 of the palettes) but I must admit I do love the darker shades included in the Naked 3.  On first impressions before I bought it, I did wonder whether I'd be wasting my money - in photographs - it does seem very similar to the Naked2.  But when viewing it in the flesh - it's very easy to see obvious differences and it actually has to be the most unique of the collection! The shades are undoubtedly more pink and plummy than the other two palettes - but definitely not so much so that they're hard to wear and I can see this palette suiting a lot of skin tones and eye colours. If you're a fan of Urban Decay shadows like myself, it's worth having a look into. I still don't know whether it has the potential to knock my current favourite, the Naked 2, off the top spot - but we shall see!

If you quite fancy rose-gold hues, pretty neutrals and plummy browns - I'd definitely recommend this palette.  They still have them in stock on House of Fraser for £37.00 here - so head on over if you fancy snapping one up! ( you can also grab discount with UniDays if you're a student) Or - keep your eyes peeled for some boxing day discount - you never know!

Have you given in to the lure of the Naked3 Palette yet? Which has been your favourite palette so far?

Monday, 23 December 2013

Latest in Beauty | The GLAMOUR Beauty Edit

Latest in Beauty | The GLAMOUR Beauty Edit Box | £14.95 | Link

When I saw all the hype surrounding the 'Latest in Beauty GLAMOUR Edit' box, I knew it wouldn't be long before I caved.  I wasn't wrong. A few days after I first heard of it, a little package arrived safe and sound on my doorstep and I tore it open like a kid at Christmas.  I loved the fact that you could just buy the one box without commitment or signing up to further boxes, and the contents totally blew me away. The box is worth a whopping £65 in total - so for just £14.95 - it really was a bargain and the perfect treat. I'm sure you've all heard about it by now as I really was a little late on the bandwagon, but I thought I'd give you the lowdown on what's in the box nonetheless...

HD Brows | Eye & Brow Palette in 'Foxy' 
I'm a massive fan of the HD Brows kits but they're hard to get your mitts on unless you want to pay a fortune! So when I saw that the box contained a full size HD Brows palette, I was sold! I usually use the shade 'Bombshell', but on comparing the 2, there really isn't a great deal of shade difference between the two.  If you've never tried HD Brows, I really recommend them. The powders are amazingly pigmented and soft, and don't smudge or fade through the day.  They're also great to use for eyeshadow and I've often blended the brown shades onto my eyelids and through the crease for a beautiful neutral look.   I have a review of my 'Bombshell' palette over here if you want to have a read up!

Eyeko | Lash Curlers
I adore eyelash curlers! I've been faithful to my beloved Tweezermans since secondary school now and nothing has ever come close, so I'm really looking forward to trying these beauties to see what they have to offer! I've heard such good things and the velvet handles are to die for! Who can say no to a dash of purple velvet?! Not me, i'll say...

Maybelline | Baby Lips in 'Hydrate'
Beauty bloggers have gone crazy for this cult favourite! I already own the peach coloured version and I must admit it's a lip balm I do tend to reach for a great deal - it's not super hydrating but there's something about the cute packaging and yummy scents that attract me to them. I find them to be hydrating enough for daytime wear without feeling too heavy or sticky on the lips and they add a little bit off glossiness. I have a full review of the Baby Lips here if you fancy a read.

Benefit | They're Real Mascara (travel size)
I'm extremely fussy with mascaras but this one has to be one of my all time favourites so I was glad to be getting another one in the box!  It's so intensely black and fans your lashes out like nothing else. I'm usually not too keen on plastic brushes but this one does it's job amazingly well and if you still haven't tried 'They're Real' I really recommend it.  I adore it.  I have a full review of the mascara here if you're interested in reading about it in detail.

Philip Kingsly | One More Day | 50ml Size
I'm a massive fan of dry shampoo. I hardly ever wash my hair daily and tend to use  dry shampoo on the second day to revive my hair at the root and add a bit of volume and texture.  I'm really excited to start trying this once my usual bottle has ran out - it's said to absorb excess sebum without drying out the scalp or leaving residue - which is one problem with the majority of dry shampoos out there. 

Balance Me | Extra Care Radiance Face Oil | 10ml
I've never really caught on to face oils.  There's something about them that scares me a little bit but I'm planning on using this in the new year once the weather really does take it's hold over my skin and I get more dry areas. I must admit, I've always got on well with Balance Me and their products seem to suit my skin quite well - so I'm quite excited about trying this one. It has a rollerball applicator which is so handy - as I hate pour-y bottles (I'm clumsy...). Balance Me say the products is the 'perfect rescue and repair for partied-out, sleep deprived skin' and is said to 'nourish, condition and glowify'. I don't know about you but my skin could do with some glowify-ing!

Toni & Guy | Glamour Firm Hold Hairspray | 75ml
This hairspray is said to provide firm hold without stickyness or weighing the hair down.   I usually use Elnett due to it's light, weightless feel as I like my hair to look natural and still have movement when it's styled - but this one might be great for rainy or windy days where I need a little extra something to help keep stray away hair at bay! Nobody likes a mop head.

Overall, a fabulous box and all for £14.95! I'm so glad I got one and there isn't a single product in there that I wouldn't want to use, test and try out for myself.  I love HD Brows (mine's starting to hit pan) so buying the box was well worth it as a full sized palette on it's own is already worth more than the £14.95 the box cost me! Amazing.  As well as this, the box is packaged beautifully and you really feel as if you've treated yourself when you open the box to the pretty tissue paper wrapping and glossy information cards. I definitely won't be throwing out the box either, that's for sure.  It's really sturdy and of a great size so I might store something in there (wow I don't sound like a recycling geek at all do i?). I also love the fact that you can choose some samples to throw in to your order as well for a few pounds each - I'm so glad I've found out about Latest in Beauty and will definitely be keeping my eyes peeled on their website in the future!

Did you grab a Latest in Beauty box? What was your favourite product?

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Love Me Beauty Box | The December Christmas Edition

Love Me Beauty Box | £10.00+ P&P* | Link

I can't believe it's the last weekend before Christmas already! I seem to have ploughed through my advent calendar at super speed this year and it still doesn't seem 5 minutes since last Christmas!  One thing I've been looking forward to in the month of December (as well as all the tree decorating and chocolate consuming) is my Love Me Beauty box.  I've been quite excited about the December box so when it arrived safe and sound on my doorstep, it felt like an early Christmas present and I couldn't wait to delve into it's delights! Here's what came in my box this month...

Lord & Berry | Intensity Lipstick in 'Glazed Pink' | Full Size | RRP £12.00
I adore Lord & Berry lipsticks so I was really excited about receiving another shade to add to my collection this month.  'Glazed Pink' is the most stunning baby pink shade. The formula is just lovely - it contains macadamia oil and waterlily extracts to help keep your lips hydrated and in good condition, and it glides onto the lips smoothly and effortlessly.  I find the pigmentation and finish of this one to be similar to the Cremesheen finishes by Mac - although with a little added dimension and gloss.  I adore this shade already - It's the perfect nude pink and looks lovely against my winter skin. A little pop of pink blush and I'm good to go!

Lord & Berry | Kiss Proof Lip Liner in 'Seduction' | Full Size | RRP £7.50
Again, another lovely addition I was really happy to receive.  I love the Lord & Berry lip liners and the last one I tried became a make-up bag staple within days.  I do tend to pop lip liner on if I'm wearing lipstick as I find it helps enhance my lip shape more and gives that 'perfected' finish - so I'm always on the lookout for new shades to add to my little collection.  I don't tend to wear brighter pinks a lot so I won't get as much wear out of this as I would from a nude or bright red shade - but it's handy to have nonetheless.

 Headline Colours | Nail Polish in 'Quicksand' | Full Size | RRP £9
I'm always happy to see a nail polish in a beauty box - especially when it's a colour I know I'll use and love.  I adore taupe shades on the nails - it always looks so classy and elegant (and you never have to worry about matching nails to an outfit!).  This one claims to be resistant to chipping, flaking and cracking, and is said to be extra durable.  Perfect for me as I always seem to chip my polish easily!

S5 | Vitality Mask | Exclusive to Love Me Beauty
I'm really getting into face masks just recently so this S5 Vitality Mask sounds like just the treat my skin needs.  The formula is clinically proven to reduce imperfections by 60% and pore size by 20%. I cannot wait to try this!

Rodial | 5 Minute Facial | Sample Size | RRP £35
I was so excited to see Rodial make an appearance in the boxes this month! I've always liked the sound of their products and have read quite a bit about them in magazines so this is the perfect chance for me to finally give them a whirl!  The 5 minute facial is said to exfoliate, decongest the skin and clarify whilst absorbing impurities and reducing pore size. It contains 'Argirline' which is said to help reduce stress by helping to relax the facial muscles.  I don't know about you but it sounds like a wonder mask to me! I cannot wait to try it!

Once again, it's a thumbs up from me for the December Love Me Beauty Box.  Although, if I was so be extremely picky - I can't help but think it would have been nice to receive a little festive addition in the form of a red lip liner or something glittery - but I loved everything I got this month nonetheless.  Overall - a fabulous box and I'm so happy with the menu I chose - the Rodial additions to the menus this month and the gorgeous Lord & Berry lipstick really made it for me! Also, Love Me Beauty have passed on a little 20% discount code which is valid from the 5th December all the way up to the 10th January - so if you've never tried a beauty box before or fancy treating someone for the New Year, it really is the perfect opportunity to do so!  Simply enter the code 'LMBBB20' into the delivery section when you order.

Have you signed up to Love Me Beauty? Which product tickles your fancy this month?

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Collection Gothic Glam Lipstick in 'Revenge' | Dupe for Mac's 'Dark Side'?

You know me... casually stroll into Boots and make a beeline straight for the lipsticks.  When I heard of Collection's new Gothic Glam range a couple of weeks back, I tottled off to pick one up - it's no secret that I've been in favour of a darker lip of late!  I instantly settled on 'Revenge' - a deep maroon shade. The collection consists of 2 other shades - one slightly lighter berry red, and a very daring deep purple.  The lighter maroon looked very similar to their 'Prohibition' Deluxe lipstick which I already own (it has it's own post here!) and I couldn't quite see myself pulling off the purple shade (beautiful as it is) without looking like I was about to go trick or treating... so 'Revenge' it was!

I have to say - Collection know how to make a lipstick. Every single one I've bought, I've loved.  They're pigmented, last amazingly well and the formula is always really creamy and non-drying - not to mention the amazing price! For £2.99, these little beauties are a fabulous option for a purse-friendly treat.  As soon as I popped 'Revenge' on the lips, I was instantly reminded of my newest dark-lip fave, Mac's 'Dark Side'. (post here)  And when I got them both out alongside each other to compare, I wasn't wrong! Not only are they very close in the colour stakes, but they give a very similar look and finish to the lips and are both incredibly opaque.  'Dark Side' is more of a true dark maroon shade compared with 'Revenge' - Collection's offering is ever so slightly more purple toned as can be seen in the swatches above.  Personally,  I don't see a great deal of difference once worn - and although my Mac favourite tops the mark sliiightly, I must admit I love 'Revenge' and I'm so glad I picked it up.  I love the formula - it's lovely and opaque without being completely matte, so it gives that little bit of dimension to your lips and doesn't instantly settle into fine lines or dry areas. Thumbs up from me!

Of course, I'm aware I actually didn't need both of these lipsticks in my collection - after all, they're both extremely similar - but I must admit I'm quite happy to have found a cheaper, affordable dupe for a Mac winter favourite!  I always feel a little 'iffy' about taking my Mac lipsticks out with me (we've all been there, done that and lost the £15 lipstick, right?), so in future, I shall keep the Collection version in my handbag for on the go top ups! I can't seem to find the Gothic Glam collection on Boots website, but you can easily find them in store and also in Superdrug here. For £2.99, they're the perfect excuse to try something a little more daring this winter...  I have a post on Mac's Dark Side here if you fancy comparing the 2 in more detail!

Have you tried any lipsticks from Collection's 'Gothic Glam' range? Whats your favourite?

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Merry Christmas to Me... | Ted Baker 'Lips Made For Kissing' Set

I've done it. I've caved into Boots' 3 for 2 offer on Christmas Gifts and bought one for myself. *slap wrist Bethers!*.  It wasn't intentional, I promise.  But I was lured in by the pretty little tin and the fabulous selection of lip crayons and just had to pop it into my basket.  I like to think of it as my little present to myself for being such a good Christmas shopper and getting everything sorted early this year.  It's fine to treat yourself now and again, right?  I love Boots' Christmas section - they have so many amazing gifts and I'm always tempted every year.  This is the first year in a good 5 years that I won't be working in the shopping centre where I live - I always used to pop through Boots on my way to work and grab a bargain the day that they reduced their Christmas Gifts (I used to nab myself a Soap & Glory box set at 8:15 in the morning before everyone else piled in and fought their way to the tills...I used to get the best bargains without any need for pushing or shoving) But this year, I doubt I'll be up at the crack of dawn to nab myself some 50% off treats - so I figured I'd just treat myself now to avoid disappointment.  Fully justified purchase.

Ted Baker always do lovely gift sets.  Their packaging is always spot on and I'm a sucker for anything in a tin. It was meant to be really, wasn't it? As soon as I saw the 4 different lip shades I knew I had to have it.  There isn't a single shade I wouldn't wear.  I wasn't expecting much in the pigmentation stakes but after swatching, I have to say I'm so impressed.  They're so soft and creamy and don't require building up at all. What you see is more or less what you get!  They're also really moisturising - they feel lightweight and soft on the lips - being ever so slightly glossy in appearance without feeling heavy or slippy. The perfect consistency for a lip crayon.  Sadly, they don't have names - but I'm sure that's just a beauty blogger preference! The middle 2 shades have to be my faves - the deep berry colour is just a beauty (as you may know I'm obsessed with anything slightly dark and berry-ish right now!) and the mid-pink shade is perfect for everyday wear.  They're easy to apply, easy to twist up and they glide across the lips like a dream!

Honestly - I couldn't recommend this little set enough.  For £15.00 (that's less that £4 per crayon!) it's such a good bargain - considering that similar products on the market retail for around the £8-9 mark for a singular product and often aren't as pigmented. You even get a pretty little tin too! I'm fully aware I will probably see this tin reduced by more than half price as soon as January rolls around but I just wasn't prepared to take that risk - it's definitely going to be one that flys off the shelves pretty sharpishly in my opinion! You can find the 'Lips Made for Kissing' set online here, or take a look at the other 3 for 2 gift options from Boots here. I can't wait until everything's reduced so I can grab a few more gift sets! I have my eyes on a few Champneys goodies and a few No.7 sets but I shall try my luck and wait until they're all on sale now. Fingers crossed I manage to find some more beauty gems...

Have you treated yourself to anything this Christmas? Do you have you eye on any Boots bargains?!