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  • 03/23/14--00:00: NEW BARRY M GELLY SHADES

  • I think by now we all know about my love for the Barry M Gelly nail polishes and if you don't, then check out my Drugstore Nail Polish Hall of Fame post for the lowdown. 

    This week three new shades were added to my collection, Rose Hip (pink), Sugar Apple (mint) and Huckleburry (blue). I know ice cream nails were done last year but personally I couldn't be happier that they're back. I love pastel nail shades and I feel like I can never have enough, especially for the summer. The Gelly formula is really easy to apply, it gives an opaque finish after two coats and  I think these shades are spot on! 

    So which one is your favourite?

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    Are you ready for what is possibly one of my favourite videos I have ever filmed?! Anna and I got together for our monthly beauty chat, but this month fancied something a bit more laid back and fun... So here is The 90s Kid Tag. You can expect a lot of reminiscing about our favourite Disney films, music, sweets as well as our not so favourite fashion trends (and some awful photos to prove it!). 

    Don't forget to subscribe to Anna's channel and mine here and we hope you enjoy watching this as much as we enjoyed filming it! 

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  • 03/24/14--00:00: LAYERING THE LINER

  • Kohl eyeliner and I have a rocky relationship. It was my best friend during my teen years and now looking back I wish it wasn't. I'd go completely overboard to the point that my eyes would become so small you could hardly see them amongst the black. Then I discovered brown eyeshadow and loved the effect using it around the eye so since then I've mainly stuck to soft brown shadows and brown eyeliner only on the upper lash line. It's a shame though because I think if done well eyeliner can look great smudged all around the eye, so I wanted to give it another go. 

    Charlotte Tilbury is set to release four more shades to her Rock'n'Kohl eyeliner collection so it's the perfect opportunity for me to give it a go. One of her head makeup artists tried it on me and it looked great so I tried to recreate the look at home. The four new shades are Eye Cheat for Bigger, Brighter Eyes (nude), Elizabeth Violet (dark burgundy plum), Veruschka Mink (dark grey) and Marlene Midnight (deep navy). Apparently Marlene Midnight is great for brown eyes, but I feel quite comfortable with plums so I went for Elizabeth Violet and ran it along the upper lash line and under the lower lash line, focusing on the outer corners. After one layer I smudged it across and up into the crease using a brush and the great thing about these liners is they apply easily like a gel, smudge nicely but once they set they won't smear. I then applied another layer further intensifying the look. It took a while to get it perfect, I'd recommend having cotton buds nearby but in the end I was happy with the look! 

    Another tip if you feel like too much eyeliner makes your eyes look small is to use the nude liner in the inner waterline to brighten and open your eyes. The four new shades will be available soon on Charlotte's website and in Selfridges so if you're into your liner these are a great addition to your makeup collection. 

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  • 03/25/14--00:00: LONDON: WHERE TO EAT

  • Growing up in London with a family that loves to eat out means I've tried my fair share of restaurants. My friends and family are always sharing recommendations that Rich and I like to try out most weekends. I'd say restaurant recommendations for London is one of my most asked questions on Twitter, so I wanted to do a post of some of my favourite places to eat. There are a few local gems I've missed out on the list as I wanted to keep it quite central making it suitable for both Londoners and visitors. So here it goes...

    HOMESLICE // link
    Right in the centre of Covent Garden, in my favourite colourful Neal's Yard lives the perfect pizza stop for lunch. You can either buy by the slice (they're huge) or share a 22inch pizza between you. The atmosphere is casual, fun and makes you feel like you're on holiday. The pizza toppings are far from boring, it's suitable for lunch or dinner and great for quickly picking up a slice on the go. 

    So overly spoken about but still so good. The Breakfast Club has everything you could possibly want for a full-on breakfast plus more. Think American diner minus the grease. The menu has more to offer than breakfast and brunch, but going to TBC and not having pancakes or a full English is a bit of a crime in my opinion. Prepare to queue during peak times but trust me it's worth it. 

    For something slightly out of central London but in the heart of Primrose Hill, Greenberry Cafe is the place to be. Usually very busy and packed full of Primrose trendies but the food is delicious. Fresh ingredients, non-complicated dishes and the best salads. Great for brunch or lunch on a weekend and if you don't already know the area it's beautiful for browsing the local shops and walking in the park (walk to the top of the hill for the best view!). 

    SHORYU // link
    If you find yourself on Oxford Street near Soho or Piccadilly circus, walk around the corner to Shoryu. Pick from a selection of authentic ramen dishes that are all completely delicious. If you love ramen, then you'll love this place and it's great for either lunch or dinner. Don't forget to ask for refill noodles if you run out too quickly! 

    PATTY & BUN // link
    For me, the best burgers in London are at Patty & Bun... hands down. It's a small place with not much atmosphere but the burgers? Amazing. It's a good place to visit if you're shopping in Selfridges and expect a queue but don't give up, it moves quite quickly. 

    CHICKEN SHOP // link
    Just next door to Pizza East and Dirty Burger (two other favourites) lives Chicken Shop, a slightly hidden downstairs restaurant. I love the vibe, relaxed, easy and fuss-free. There's no menu, simply some writing on the wall: whole, half or quarter chicken and four sides to choose from. The open kitchen has you drooling for chicken from the minute you walk in and don't even get me started on the crinkle cut fries.... When I go with my friends we usually get either a half or whole chicken and order all the sides to share. Leave some room for the apple pie though, they cut the slice at the table as small or large as you like! 

    OTTELENGHI //link
    One of my all-time favourite chefs and the master of Israeli salads. If you like deli-style salads, meats and breads it's definitely worth visiting one of his restaurants. Islington is a good one to go to if you want to try out a different, more residential area that also has lots of bars and shops on offer. 

    PIX //link
    If you're looking for tapas in London, PIX is a really fun one to visit. It's self service so you pick your dishes, collect the sticks in your food and count them up when it comes to paying your bill. The small plates are delicious, really affordable and great for sharing. 

    Have I made you hungry? Let me know if you visit any of these places by tweeting me @lilypebbles 

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  • 03/25/14--06:00: LONDON: WHERE TO SHOP

  • Carrying on from my post earlier today on where to eat in London, I'm going to share with you some of my favourite places to shop. 

    Not only is Carnaby Street a nice escape from the hustle and bustle on Oxford Street and a throw back to London in the 60s but it's also a treasure for shopping. Once you pass Ben's Cookies (don't you dare pass without getting one) there are so many places to visit on and around Carnaby Street. Turn the first right to visit Brandy Melville (for the coolest casual clothes), Pixi (to get your Glow Tonic) and Dahlia (for beautiful dresses). Turn first left to visit MAC, gaze into the window of Choccywoccydoodah and visit the amazing Cowshed spa. On the main strip of Carnaby Street my favourite shop is Monki and whilst you're walking down don't forget to turn right and pop into Kingly Court where you'll find cute, one-off shops, coffee stops and a few good restaurants too. 

    It's worth visiting Camden, despite it being such a huge tourist attraction. If the weather is good it's beautiful to walk or bike along the canal. The market is full of quirky gifts and bits'n'pieces as well as really good street food and coffee. There's loads of hidden parts so I'd recommend spending time walking around and exploring the lock and the stables. The best place for lunch? Honest Burger. 

    Beauty addicts visiting London, if you're anything like me I'm sure you can't go very long without a fix so I recommend visiting this Space NK. It's really big, spacious and the staff are really friendly and helpful! 

    Two humungous floors of fresh food, drinks, beauty products... everything you can imagine. It's a giant superstore that has me walking around for hours and spending a fortune by the time I leave. It's one of my favourite things to do when I'm in that part of London. 

    The Liberty building is one the oldest and most beautiful in London so it's worth going in just for that reason. Despite the clothes and accessories being out of most people's budget, the beauty hall is a bit more approachable and offers some really great brands. It's really enjoyable to shop in, the people on counter are all really helpful and the candle room is like heaven. You won't find a bargain but you may find a product or brand you've never heard of. 

    If you're going to Selfridges anyway, make sure to visit the beauty workshop which is separate to the main beauty hall. This is my favourite part because it offers the slightly less mass market, high end brands and more interesting ones like Aesop, Estelle & Thild, RMK and more. There is a Nails Inc nail bar, a Daniel Hersheson blow dry bar and a Blink Brow Bar too. There's a really great selection of brands so don't miss it out when you're in there. 

    There are so many places to mention and I can't talk about them all, but other mentions should go to Portobello and Spitalfields Market, Covent Garden and of course there is Westfield, but who wants to shop inside when you have real London markets to visit! 

    I hope this was helpful and please let me know if you have any other London post requests! 

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    After an amazing day out with my mum (more about that on Saturday) I came home and the first thing I wanted to do was try out my new NARS Matte Multiples that I'd spotted earlier in the day in Space NK. 

    I thought, why not open them up and try them out on camera, so here it is... my first ever first impressions video. Enjoy! 

    Sidenote. I'll be revising these on here and giving them a proper review at a later date. 


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  • 03/26/14--00:00: YSL BABYDOLL KISS & BLUSH

  • At the launch of YSL's new Baby Doll Kiss & Blush the room literally "ooooooohhed" as they were revealed. It's something new that we haven't seen before so I was intrigued and excited to give them a go. YSL are calling this the new match&match or mix&match way to apply makeup. The product looks like a nail polish but inside is a brush similar to their Glossy Stains that applies a small amount of product onto your cheeks and lips. The thirteen shades are a mix of pinks, lilacs and peaches that should all work on both the cheeks and lips and can be mixed and matched together to create your personal combination. 

    The formula is a "light-diffusing gel" that is apparently both matte and luminous. It contains a combination of oils and powders which help to make it sit comfortably on the skin and last longer throughout the day. 

    So what do I think? Well I got to try out two shades at home, 2 Rose Insolent and 9 Rose Épicurien. The first thing I realised, quite quickly, is that I'm not sure if I actually want my cheeks and lips to match? Personally it's not a look I love although I know can look really striking on some. The formula is really interesting, it can be blended out with a buffing brush or with fingers and it smooths out quickly and evenly. I found the applicator released the perfect amount of product but I also found it quite hard to layer without it looking blotchy. One coat works best, so getting the perfect amount of product on the cheek first time round is essential. For the cheeks it feels great, like a hybrid between a gel and cream blush. For lips I found it a little drying and the shades unfortunately weren't a great match for me.

    I think it's an exciting idea and as a blush it's nice and good for those who are on the go a lot. They look cute and the mix&match idea is nice, if you have the budget. Each Kiss & Blush is £27, which is standard for YSL and I actually think they'll do well. 

    What do you think of the Kiss & Blush idea? Will you be trying one? 

    UK release date 30th April available now online here - link

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  • 03/27/14--00:00: CURRENT CANDLE COLLECTION

  • I've been a bit lazy when it comes to burning candles so far this year, I feel like I never really have the time to sit, light a candle and enjoy it. I've been making more of an effort recently to light candles in my office, in my lounge and in my bedroom when I have time. I've built up a nice collection of new candles that I'm enjoying burning, so I wanted to share my favourites with you...

    One of my favourite brands for candles is Illume. I've come across their candles before in Anthropologie and love their Good Nature Tin candles which I have in Avocado & Mint and Coconut Milk Mango. I also recently tried their Gallery Glass candle in Desert Tulip which is huge and looks beautiful on display (the red one). Something new from them is the Sketchbook Ceramic range, they're the tall hand painted ones. These also look really great on display and have some great scents like Pineapple Cilantro. The brand itself is much easier to find in America, but some of these candles might pop up in Anthropologie and on their website so keep an eye out! 

    Jo Malone never fails in the candle department and their recent launch is perfect. One of their newer scents from last year Blackberry & Bay has been released housed in a limited edition design by Michael Angove. Blackberry & Bay is the most juicy, nostalgic, beautiful scent and it's one that really lifts a room. I love it. 

    NEOM is also a brand I always come back to. Their candles burn incredibly clean as they use only vegetable wax and essential oils. They burn for a long time and you can really smell the scent throughout your home. LOVE is a limited edition candle that was released around Valentine's Day but is still out so would work well as a Mother's Day present too. The scent is Tuberose, Mimosa and Jasmine. 

    Which candles are you loving at the moment? 

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  • 03/27/14--06:00: Topshop & H&M Home Haul

  • If you follow me on Twitter you might remember that Sunday when I ventured into town by myself to browse the shops... It was never gonna end well. I went a bit wild in H&M home and also picked up some bits from Topshop and Zara. 

    I hope you enjoy seeing what I picked up. For all the links, check the description bar under the video. 

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  • 03/28/14--00:00: SPRING SAILOR

  • It's coming up to that time of year where I need to spend an entire day transitioning my wardrobe from Winter to Spring, moving the heavy knit jumpers under my bed and making room for lighter, prettier things. 

    I recently picked up this top in the sale on ASOS and knew the second I tried it on that it was love. It's not too thin, so the material has a nice weight to it and hangs well. It's made from 100% soft cotton and has a nice zip detail on the back. I really love it and wanted to pair it with my new mono white Converse from JD Sports. I was really lucky to be able to pick out a pair of trainers from their site and I went for these because of my recent obsession with white and I think they look completely different from the classic Converse style. It's funny what a red line can do to a shoe, but personally I much prefer these to the classic style I've had in the past. I predict a week until they're no longer white, but hopefully they'll wash well! 

    To keep things casual I wore my old Topshop Leigh jeans that I attacked with scissors last week and my small, yellow Zara bag from last year. Other accessories include my Acurist watch, lime green nail polish which is 'Spring Buds' by Deborah Lippmann and of course my Ray Bans

    Five minutes after these photos were taken it hailed in London and I had to change into warmer clothes but there's no surprises there. So what do you think of my new top and kicks? I love 'em. 


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    It's Mother's Day tomorrow in the UK, just a gentle reminder for those of you who still need to buy a card! This week my mum and I has a pre-mother's day packed full of lots of treats... she deserves it putting up with me! 

    WEAR //
    Our day started with a visit to the Jo Malone boutique on Sloane Square, which is one of my favourite brands that I was introduced to by my mum many years ago. We had a fragrance consultation which everyone is offered for free in store where they help you decide on your favourite scents and which ones mix well together. We were then treated to a gorgeous hand and arm scrub followed by a spritz of our favourite scent combinations. Mine was Wild Fig & Cassis and Blackberry & Bay - yum! If you're still stuck for ideas on a Mother's day gift, the Sloane Square boutique are doing limited edition gifts where a 100ml perfume of your choice can be placed into a beautiful box of blooms. The flowers are gorgeous and will last for weeks. I think it's a really special gift for a mum!

    LIFE //
    Next up was a visit to the Daniel Hersheson salon in Harvey Nichols. Whilst I had the most relaxing, perfect pedicure my mum was in a private room having "the best facial she's ever had"by Nita. My mum gets facial a lot so for her to say this was the best is a big deal. She came out makeup free but completely glowing from the 'Alexandra Soveral' treatment. We then both had blow dries, but this time it was me saying "this is the best blow dry I've ever had". It usually takes about an hour to tackle my hair, but Rory blow dried and added waves in about 15 minutes, insane. You can see the final result properly in this video where 95% of the comments are on how nice my hair is. I'd definitely recommend the Hersheson salon for spa treatments and blow dries, we had a great experience and I'm sure I'll be going back very soon. 

    EATS // 
    With our hair perfectly waved, we headed up to the 5th floor of Harvey Nichols for afternoon tea in Season. We had the chocolate tea, which came with a ridiculous amount of chocolate, a chocolate martini, finger sandwiches and scones. To say at the end we were full would be an understatement. 

    I hope you all enjoy Mother's Day tomorrow. Give her a big hug and a big thank you because mums are the best!

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    The Hyper Gel line from Model's Own is relatively new and the first thing that grabbed my attention was the selection of shades. It's got the white that everyone's obsessed with at the moment, for pastel lovers there's a lilac and for the bright nail lovers there's a really pretty green, periwinkle blue and bright coral. There are also 5 other shades available in this collection. 

    I assumed from the description that these would be just like the Barry M Gelly polishes but actually I think the gel formula is more noticeable in these. The first coat goes on quite sheer but then the second coat gives a really opaque finish with super shine. The formula is also enriched with lotus flower oil which I guess nourishes the nails but also will act as a barrier to water so the polish should last longer even if you're washing your hands daily. 

    They're £5 each and are available from Model's Own bottle shops worldwide. I'd say my favourite is the blue, which is yours?

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  • 03/30/14--08:00: VLOG: #DRUNKCAM

  • It's vlog time again! Follow me around eating chicken, drinking coffee, getting tipsy, spotting Russell Brand & lots of other random stuff! 


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  • 03/30/14--23:00: THE SKINCARE GIFT BASKET

  • Last week it was my older sister's birthday and it was quite hard to think of what to buy her. I'm always really picky when it comes to buying presents because I like them to be thoughtful and I want them to love it. My oldest sister has never been one for makeup, skincare, haircare...anything beauty related really, but that's fine, that's just her. Since having a baby a couple of years ago she seems to be a bit more into it, trying out lipstick every now and again and asking me about moisturisers. So for her birthday this year my mum and I decided to make her a skincare basket equipped with everything she needs to kick start a daily skincare routine. 

    I think personal gifts like this are really nice and can be adjusted to each individual. Because of my sister's busy lifestyle as a mummy and the fact that until now she really hasn't looked after her skin, we tried to put together a simple routine and with some much needed help over email from Caroline Hirons ~ thanks Caroline ~ I think we put together quite a nice kit. 

    So what's in the basket? 

    - Primark flannels
    - Cotton wool
    - Small spatula

    I also wrote up a personal note explaining what she needs to do and on the back I wrote a simple morning and evening skincare guide for her to pin on her wall a bit like the one I mentioned in this post. 

    To actually make the gift, I bought a basket, tissue paper and cellophane from Hobby Craft. I layered the tissue down first, laid out the products with the note at the back (printed on card) and then put the basket on top of the laid out cellophane. It's then just a case of bringing the cellophane up and tying it at the top before tying it with either ribbon or straw. I also stapled the sides together so they didn't stick out! 

    The price obviously depends on what you put into the kit and can be adjusted depending on your budget, but I think this is a nice way to make someone a personalised gift that will come in really handy. So let's see if she actually adopts this new skincare routine... I'll keep you posted!

    *FYI. My sister has very sensitive and dry skin, that's very red and damaged from the sun.


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  • 03/31/14--23:00: THE PERFECT UNDER EYE BRUSH

  • I've mentioned before, in this post specifically, my love for the lower lash smudge. In the past I would have gone straight for the MAC 219 pencil brush to create this look but I've found it recently to be too rigid. Because it's quite short and firm, not much smudging can actually take place. Instead I have been reaching for the Zoeva 231 Petit Crease which judging by the name is meant instead for the crease. It's a small domed brush that makes the lower lash smudge really quick and easy to do. 

    Such a simple switch up of brushes has made doing my makeup so much quicker and more enjoyable, so if you also like to apply eyeshadow to the lower lash line I'd highly recommend this brush or something of a similar shape. 

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  • 04/01/14--05:00: THE MARCH CATCH-UP

  • It's the first of the month so about time we looked back at the last month. I've worked through all 44 posts from March and picked out some of my favourite to show you in case you missed them first time round! Don't forget to follow to my website on Bloglovin' so you don't miss any posts. 

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    When hit with the dreaded what's your favourite brand question Laura Mercier always slips my mind, but I actually own a lot from the brand and I'm hardly ever disappointed with the products I try. On today's testing list is their new Spring Artist palette, can you hear the angels singing? 

    The palette includes 12 eyeshadows and although it's two less than the Smashbox Full Exposure palette, it's exactly what I'd hoped the FE would be before I was disappointed - see this post. The top line offers a great selection of matte eyeshadows, a black and navy to use for liner, two medium browns for the crease, a really unique peachy beige and a standard matte highlight. The bottom row offers some shimmer shadows, a mix of luster and sateen finishes but nothing glittery that falls all over your face. They actually apply a lot less shimmery than they look in the pan. There's an almost-white shimmer highlight, a light pink (similar to All That Glitters), a pale grey, a pink and purple that blend beautifully together and a rich chocolate brown which is one of my favourites. 

    There are two limited edition shades in the palette, Diamond Pink and Violet Steel and there aren't really any that I wouldn't wear. As with most palettes the quality of the shadows is slightly different for each shade, but with the majority I found they blended nicely together (maybe with a little more effort than usual) but once on, they lasted throughout the day without going patchy. You hardly need to touch the brush on to get a good amount of product on the bristles. 

    The packaging is spot on, small, magnetic close and it won't get dirty too easily. I love how the shadow names are permanently written underneath each one and the size of the mirror inside is really decent. 

    So what you all really want to know about is the price and that's the not so good bit. Laura Mercier is a high end brand so this was never going to be a cheap palette, but at £60 it's almost double since the £36 Christmas Artist palette last year. This palette, unlike the last one, comes with a mini brown Caviar Stick (cream eyeshadow) and a mini Volume Lash mascara but I can't help but think that most customers will just want the palette and would have preferred to pay £36 for the palette minus the extras. It's a strange move by Laura Mercier but then again it labels this as a really high end eyeshadow palette by a really high end brand and that's exactly how they want to be positioned. 

    This for me, completely outdoes the Smashbox Full Exposure palette and it's one I know I'll get a lot of use out of. It will be landing on counters in May, so what do you think of the new Spring Artist Palette? 

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  • 04/02/14--23:00: ONE BALM, TEN USES

  • Neal's Yard have a lot of really well known products, but their most loved is the Wild Rose Beauty Balm. The product itself has been around for nearly 10 years and to celebrate it's 10th birthday a special limited edition design has been created by British artist Alice Shields and wrapped about the little tub. 

    It's a balm enriched with rose hip seed oil, geranium, borage, patchouli and hemp seed oil. Looking at it I wouldn't have really known what to do with it, but I was amazed to learn that it has over 10 uses. The limited edition tub isn't available until May but if you already have the original, maybe this post will help you find other ways of using it and if you don't yet have it hold out for May when this cute packaging will land in stores. 

    So here are my favourite ways to use it... 

    Cleanse // Massage a small amount onto the face and remove using a muslin cloth soaked in warm water. I found this did leave a bit of an oily residue so would work best for dry skin types. 

    Lip Balm // Apply a small amount to the lips when they're feeling dry and apply over lipstick for a balm shine look. 

    Cheekbone Glow // Apply a small amount to the tops of your cheekbone after your foundation routine for a healthy dewy glow.

    Nail Balm // Massage a small amount into your cuticles at night, it'll moisturise and encourage strong nail growth. 

    Heel Softener // After washing and exfoliating the feet, massage some balm into the heels to soften them up. 

    Flight Repair //  One a long haul flight, use this as a really intense moisturiser to prevent skin dehydration. 

    Eyebrow Tamer // Apply a small amount to the brows and comb through with a brush to keep hairs in place. 

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  • 04/03/14--05:00: MARCH BEAUTY FAVOURITES

  • Another month has past and I've fallen in love with a whole new bunch of products. Watch this video to see the products I've been loving this month and I hope you find some new bits to try! 

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  • 04/03/14--23:00: EASTER MEETUP

  • On Saturday 19th April, Easter bank holiday weekend, John Frieda will be hosting a Frizz Ease Style Bar to celebrate the relaunch of the line. The style bar will be hosted in Boots Westfield White City (my favourite Boots ever!) from 11.30am-8pm and stylists will be on hand to introduce the new products and give quick demos on how they can be used. 

    I'll be there from 12-3pm and would love to meet some of you! So if you're up for some beauty chatting, a bit of hair styling and some great shopping then get yourself down to Westfield on 19th April and I'll see you in Boots between 12-3pm. 

    Looking forward to meeting you! 

    *This post is part of some sponsored work I'm doing with John Frieda 

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