30 June 2014

June empties

Dear readers,

Another month has flown by and I hope that these summer months were to pass slower as I love the warm weather, going to the beach and having dinner on a terrace below a canopy of stars.

For starters I have some sunscreen lotions, very fitting for this time of year:

Top left corner: Nivea Sun spf 20, it's a nice water resistant lotion that hasn't that strong sunscreen scent and absorbs pretty quickly into the skin. It was a leftover from last year, therefore the lower protection factor. I got this only because I couldn't find my beloved Garnier-Delial anywhere.

Below: Vichy Capital Soleil spf 50+ it's hypoallergenic, paraben and fragrance free. This has a thicker formula and smells awfully sunscreeny (if that's a proper adjective) I only purchased it to have a higher spf for my chest and shoulder area but don't think I'll be purchasing this again.

Garnier-Delial Ambre Solaire Golden Protect spf 30: I've mentioned this product before in my empties as it is my favourite sunscreen ever. It contains coconut and monoï oil and is therefore very moisturizing and has an amazing smell. It also contains very fine golden particles that leave your skin glowy and tan without making your skin feeling sticky. And it's only 11€ for a 200ml bottle.

My favourite eye cream: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye. I like to use it in the mornings, it has a thick though more gel-like formula so it doesn't feel greasy. I have very oily skin so when I use a more nourishing/thick eye cream my make up tends to glide away after a few hours. It has a pricey tag attached to it but I always wait for an offer and normally get it for around 35-40€, it lasts me a long time, though so it's totally worth it.

Macadamia moisturizing rinse: this came in a travel kit I purchased some time ago and even if it's only 60ml it has lasted me a long time as I alternate it with the deep repair masque. I don't think I will be purchasing this again, I loved it, but I'd rather get the deep repair masque instead which is awesome.

Clarins Extra-Firming Night Rejuvenating cream: has the most amazing scent ever and I loved the formula, it melted into my skin. This was a deluxe sample size that came with the one-step facial cleanser with orange extract that I also liked very much. I can't recall it's price as my mom got it for me but I will definitely put this on my wish list.

Yves Rocher pur bleuet express eye make up remover: just a random one, I purchased this to get free shipping with my Yves Rocher online order. It's the kind of two-phase liquid that you have to shake up to mix the water and the oil together before use. Just nah, didn't do it for me.

The Body Shop body butter in pink grapefruit. What to say about the body butters? If you haven't tried them yet nothing I can say is going to do it justice. I would just buy them as air fresheners, they smell soooooo good it's addictive. Maybe I need to go to some BBA meetings (Body Butter Anonymous).

Just a random clear polish I used to use as a base coat on my toes, it's from HEMA but those of you not familiar with this Dutch store won't know what I'm talking about. It's cheap and it's good, nothing more to say there.

And finally a few sample sizes I've used up. I had some more but as they were in sachet form I didn't want to feature each and every one of them.

Clarins Instant Definition Mascara: it was difficult to work with so I didn't like it at all.

Guerlain Abeille Royale youth serum firming lift wrinkle correction: wow, if it does all that I'm sold. I liked the texture and scent, Guerlain products always smell so good. I don't think I will be getting this in the near future, though. I haven't looked up its price but I can imagine it will be sky rocketing high.

LUSH Enzymion moisturizing cream: this will definitely be my next day-cream purchase as I loved its lightweight formula and fruity scent, left me with a very soft and matte skin.

And that's all for this month's empties, have a great summer, y'all.

27 June 2014

Apple lovin'

Dear readers,

In January 2012 my life was forever changed.

A friend of mine was planning a trip to the US and let me tag along so I immediately made a list of the stores I wanted to visit: UGG, Sephora, Forever 21, LUSH, CVS, MAC, Macy's and more.

My mom's boyfriend had just come back from visiting his daughter who lives in the UK. She had an iPad and he found it a very useful and convenient device. We already had a few laptops at home and we still weren't very familiar with the Apple brand so we weren't sold on the iPad publicity that was going around. We also found they were very pricey toys and that they weren't worth the hype.

Even though I had no need for a Tablet device he just kept insisting that I had to get an iPad when in the US as the exchange rate for us Euro users was very good at the time so he gave me the money. At first I didn't like the damn thing, it didn't show the same information I got on my laptop computer so I got bored and gave it to the hubby.

As mobile web sites started improving I got more accustomed to using the iPad and I slowly began to see the advantages of having an Apple OS and now I can't imagine going back to a plain PC.

Last summer I finally decided to start blogging but I wanted a computer of my own without having to share it with the hubby. I was thinking of getting an iMac as I had been bitten by the Apple bug but when I looked at the prices I realized my dream would never come true.

Luck came knocking on my door once again: a friend of the hubby who works at a computer store told him they were getting rid of their old iMac to make place for a newer version so I could get it for peanuts.

We had already been to IKEA to get two of the well-known Alex drawers and a table top to use as a desk so I would have a nice and comfy setup for my blogging.

It's been almost a year now and I can say that blogging has been the best decision I've made, after marrying the hubby, of course. I feel blessed to have found a hobby I enjoy so much and for being able to share my thoughts and feelings with y'all.

This blog started as some kind of personal diary and I thought that nobody would ever be interested in my (beauty) ramblings, but boy was I proven wrong! Yesterday my blog reached 400 followers and I'd like to take this moment to most sincerely thank you for helping me get there. I'll be doing a giveaway shortly so keep tuned in and good luck! 

I'm ending this post with the latest addition to my beloved Apple family: my iPhone 4s. After spending all winter nagging the hubby about how much I wanted an iPhone and how expensive I felt they were he just couldn't take it any longer and made me purchase one at a reduced price and helped me pay for it. Love u hun!

iPhone case sold at: http://www.miniinthebox.com

For the love of sharing,

23 June 2014

#Bloggersdoitbetter: Collections

Dear readers,

With the summer time having officially started last Saturday I was thinking this would be the perfect chance to show y'all my bikini collection.

I have two kind of bikinis, the ones I use on a day to day basis and other hat I only use when on vacation or on special occasions.

This first one is from Women'secret and I've had it for ages, I realized when taking the picture that the red was a bit faded so I just threw it in the bin, bye bye to you. It was my most worn bikini.

This is another bikini from Women'secret and I purchased it at the same time as the one above. I haven't worn it so much so it's still pretty wearable and I'll give it another year of life.

This one was a gift from my lovely friend Laura who owns a lingerie shop. It's reversible but I always use it this side as I don't particularly like the other. I don't usually use bikini tops when I'm sunbathing so I'm getting a lot of use out of this particular one.

This is a gorgeous bikini from Malizia by La Perla, the only downside is that I find the bottom a bit on the large side, I prefer smaller bottoms so I barely wear this. This was also a gift from my friend Laura and her mother for my birthday maybe 4 or 5 years ago.

Women'secret bikini bottom, I forgot I had this until I was fishing out all my bikinis from their drawer. It was still in its plastic bag covered in talcum powder, that's the way I store them for the winter as the talcum absorbs any left over humidity and prevents the elastic fibers from breaking and making the fabric scrunchy and useless.

Malizia by La Perla: this is one of my special occasion bikinis, it's very old but I haven't worn it very often so it's as good as new. The only downside is that I've gained some weight ever since so it doesn't look as stunning on me anymore :(

Malizia by La Perla: another special bikini that has also grown a bit small for me but hell, who cares? I'm already married so I've got no one to impress any longer :)

Antigel by Lise Charmel: this has a gorgeous print and is very flattering. I got it for my birthday like 3 years ago and I haven't worn it yet, you can see that the tags are still on. It's such a beautiful piece that I want to have it forever so for now I'm happy just looking at it once in a while.

If you're curious about what the other bloggers have to say about this topic press here to go to Gemma's-Touch of Belle post with links to everyone else involved.

Happy summer!

20 June 2014

Carpe Diem

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of live, and see if I could not learn what I had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of live, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms."
                                                                          quote by Henry David Thoreau

image taken from www.imdb.com

Even 25 years after it's release Dead Poets Society is still one of my all-time favourite movies, it particularly has inspired me to follow my dreams and to try not to let social conventions get in the way.

So Carpe Diem to y'all! Seize the day, stop to smell the roses and all of those other clichés that may sound cheesy but could really be of use at some point in our lives.

16 June 2014

#2014BloggerChallenge: Meals

Dear readers,

Once in a while my mom invites us to have a seafood meal in a town nearby that is famous for this type of food. This time it was to celebrate my mom's boyfriend's birthday.

Sadly for him he is on a very strict doctor's diet so he chose a platter of sole with chips and salad on the side.

Us, we went for a mixed platter of different sorts of shrimp and a cuttlefish.

Here's a pic of what you can choose to be served if you can part with some hard earned cash: lobsters.

The other options are displayed onto different platters behind some glass sliding windows within a refrigerator. When you go walking by you get annoying shouting waiters trying to lure you into choosing their restaurant offering free sangría. This is pronounced with an accent on the I and it also means bloodbath. Maybe that's where its name came from, but I'm not sure, sorry. It's not something I'd normally drink.

The only downside to this day was the fact that we were overcharged but I was the only one aware of this and I could have said something about it but I didn't want to ruin the atmosphere of celebration we had going on. So no going back to this place ever again: Restaurante Canadá.

For those of you thinking about taking a trip to Spain a word of advice: don't let the friendliness fool you and have a good look at your bill before paying up. More often than not they will charge you for items you haven't even asked for. It's a very common routine to get a basket with a few slices of baguette-bread and some all-i-oli that nobody has asked for and find out later that you have been charged around 3€ per person.

What about you? What's your favourite celebration-meal like?

You can check all the other topic-related posts here.

For the love of food,

12 June 2014

Guessing game: my vacation in photos #nofilter

Dear readers,

After my trip to Formentera I packed my bags for a colder climate.

Can you guess where I went to?

Here are some clues:

Ok, maybe not a clue at all. A very random pic of this tee I saw in New Yorker, but I had to take this picture because it reminded me of the lovely and most funny Ingrid Nilsen aka MissGlamorazzi.

I was trying out taking some (good) selfies as I'm so bad at taking pics and I always think I'm too ugly for photos... I liked this one because the hubby was making fun of me and I had to laugh for real.

So, we'll start our journey with this pic. It was late afternoon and we had an hour to kill before our dinner reservation.

We love this city especially for its beautiful shopping area. I went to LUSH and went a bit cray cray and #FeelingSpendy I purchased over 100€ worth of products. Noticed the currency? - hint hint

This little beach was lovely to visit, not so crowded as the most famous one.

The hubby got some apple pancake and me, I just love me some poffertjes and this was the first time getting them with bacon, normally they are served with butter and powdered sugar mmmmm.

We saw this crane while biking along the canal, we both love these birds as they mate for life, isn't that super romantic?

I'm still a bit stiff from all the biking we did... ahem! - clears throat

The little town near our hotel had this idyllic look, almost like a painting.

For those of you who haven't guessed yet this sums it all up: nom nom nom

Broodje haring: Yay!

For the love of traveling, again,

9 June 2014

Primark haul

Dear readers,

I recently went to Primark and may have purchased a few items, so without further ado here goes my first fashion haul with pictures:

Printed top: 6€

Fitted tee: 6€

Men's tee: 6€

Crochet top: 5€

Broidery skater dress: 7€. This was meant to be size 10 but when I tried it at home I saw that it was size 12, it must have gotten mixed up at the store and was given the wrong hanger with a size 10 sticker. Anyhow I only wanted an easy dress to go to the beach so I don't mind it being a bit loose.

Printed viscose pants: 9€

Polka dot viscose top: 7€

I also purchased a lint roller, argan oil hair conditioner and a white infinity scarf with little baby pink polka dots.

Total expenditure: 56€ not bad taking into account that in ZARA I'd only be able to purchase 2 items for that amount.

Yay for Primark!

5 June 2014

#2014BloggerChallenge: my sample collection

Dear readers,

It's time again for another installment of the #2014BloggerChallenge, this time our topic to write about is Collections and I thought it was the perfect opportunity to get all my samples out of the forgotten drawer and finally put them to good use.

I took this picture before packing for a short vacation last week -I just came back yesterday evening- so I took a few samples with me in my Tarte travel bag.

A lot of these samples I've had for a very long time. I always keep them for travel purposes, but unfortunately I don't travel that much so my collection keeps growing.

The most I have are foundations as I find them very useful to carry around when traveling although I'm always scared they won't match my skin tone so they keep coming back unopened.

For the sake of this post I'm making a vow to you that I'm going to use up all these samples before the end of this year, not the ones I'm getting from now on, though: hoarder alert!

As per usual, you'll find Gaby's post here with a link to all other views on this same topic.

For the love of free samples,

2 June 2014

#Bloggersdoitbetter: Sunshine

Dear readers,

This is my view on this bloggers do sunshine better topic.

I love going to the beach and I'm very lucky to have one very near, I only need to cross the street, so me and the hubby use to go a lot. It's a cobblestone beach, though but I prefer it like that, I hate the sand getting everywhere.

I have a very wide selection of sunscreen products but I'm only showing you the few I couldn't possible live without.

Anessa (Japanese Shiseido brand) SPF 50+ PA++++

It's perfect for everyday use, it's so lightweight and absorbs so quick that you don't feel it's under your make up. It doesn't have any scent (I hate the sunscreen-scent when I'm not at the beach) and is a white lotion, almost as thin as water.

Collistar anti-wrinkle after sun face treatment.

I like using a targeted moisturizer at night when I've been to the beach that day. Even though I reapply sunscreen regularly I like giving my skin some extra hydration at night.

Yves Rocher Protectyl végétal after sun for body.

This has an amazing coconut scent to it without it being too overwhelming. I don't especially like coconut smell but this one I do like. It absorbs quickly and leaves a smooth and silky feeling to the skin.

Balsoderm after sun intensive spray.

This is my emergency after sun for body, it has a cooling effect and it immediately calms down any sunburn. It's in a spray form so you don't have to rub it onto your sensitive spots, the redness disappears in minutes. If you keep it in the fridge it doubles its purposes.

Bepanthol creme.

For more serious sunburns you can use this product although I only have it in case of domestic burns or to regenerate the skin if I've gotten a new tattoo.

Garnier Delial Golden protect spf 50.

I left the best for last. This sunscreen for body is the most amazing product I've ever tried. It hydrates without leaving a sticky residue, even the hubby loves it and you know how guys are with creams and lotions, they don't like feeling any sticky residue. It absorbs completely and leaves some tiny shimmery particles on the skin making it look more tan and glowing in the sunshine, pretty glamourous.

For a complete list and link to all related posts click here.

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