Category archives: Product Reviews

  • Clinique Super City Block BB Compact Review

  • I think I may have found the one!… Well the perfect BB Cream anyway; the Clinique Super City Block BB Cream! At the moment my makeup routine is super minimal due to my little lady needing my attention 24/7 so putting a bit of slap on has gone from a luxurious 10 minutes to two minutes, if I am lucky!! (With my lack of sleep I need all the help I can get). Anything that makes this part of my morning run a bit smoother whilst making me look like I’m less tired is worth trying!

    The product that I am crushing on big time is the NEW Super City Block BB Cushion Compact SPF 50

    The Super City Block BB Cushion Compact SPF 50 a multitasking formula that delivers high broad-spectrum SPF protection, instant hydration and buildable coverage. This breakthrough fluid makeup in a cushion compact provides longwearing, breathable coverage while rich antioxidants shield skin from environmental aggressors, all in one‐step.

    Through innovative technology, a liquid BB cream is imbedded into a cushiony sponge, that is housed within an airtight engine that snaps into a portable compact. The applicator sponge in combination with the formula creates an unexpected cooling sensation that leaves skin ultra-refreshed and energised.

    The Details

    • Its airy formula adheres to skin for a seamless, perfected natural matte finish. Moderate buildable coverage that lasts for 8 hours.
    • All-physical, high‐level UVA/UVB sun protection. Paired with anti‐oxidants help to protect skin from harsh city life.
    • The applicator in combination with the innovative formula leaves skin with a refreshing, cooling feeling.
    • Provides sweat and humidity resistance while controlling oil and shine for hours.
    • Suitable for full-face application or on the go touch‐ups.
    • Available in 8 shades

    NEW Super City Block BB Cushion Compact SPF 50 RRP £30.00/ €40.00

    Available exclusively at Fenwicks from July 2016!

    Clinique super city Bb review
    Clinique super city Bb review

    They say that a BB cream is the only product you will need after you wash your face. This is the first time I have properly used a BB cream on a daily basis and I have to agree! I still use a moisturiser but this BB is a light to medium coverage that’s very build-able. Another plus point to this is that is covers my post pregnancy pigmentation across my forehead and top lip. Extra coverage is definitely needed here and the sponge is great for adding more product to the areas that need it.

    There is no need for primer and the finish is really silky so my skin still looks like skin. So that’s high sun protection ✔️ no need for primer ✔️ and no powder ✔️✔️
    It’s not completely perfect as its not as long lasting as I would hope but the compact is east to use and you can reapply as needed.

    Here are the products I used to create my (very quick) everyday makeup (all available from Fenwick):

    Moisture Surge
    Super City Block BB Compact in 02 Moderately Fair
    High Impact Mascara
    Chubby Stick in 07 Super Strawberry

    Soleil Tan Bronzer
    Benefit Brow Zings
    Clinique super city Bb compact review
    My super quick makeup routine! Ta-da!
  • Caudalie Product Review

  • Caudalie Product Review

    Recently I’ve been trying out Caudalie Beauty Elixir, Premier Cru The Cream, Premier Cru The Eye Cream and Vinosource SOS Thirst Quenching Serum. I was eager to see how they would perform, so here is my product review:

    Before I talk more about each product individually, I just want to say that I loved them. They made me feel so pampered in a time when I really need some pampering… It was amazing.

    caudal product review

    Caudalie’s Beauty Elixir

    The Beauty Elixir is the perfect product for me when I’ve hardly had any sleep. The natural extracts of peppermint, lemon and orange are so invigorating. They make the skin feel instantly refreshed and revitalised. I particularly loved how it would make me feel refreshed right before applying my makeup.

    You can buy the Elixir for £32.

    Caudalie’s Premier Cru The Cream

    The Premier Cru The Cream is absolutely amazing. I really feel like it’s been working its magic on my skin. The anti-ageing properties help make the skin feel plumper, and full of life. It’s excellent for keeping the skin hydrated and provides the perfect dewy look – yay! I also felt like this moisturiser goes a long way as you don’t need very much of it for each application.

    You can buy this product for – the marginally pricey price of – £92.50.

    Caudalie’s Premier Cru The Eye Cream

    Just like the Premier Cru The Cream, Premier Cru The Eye Cream is another great product from Caudalie. I felt like it really helped to reduce the puffiness around the eyes and leaved me feeling rejuvenated. This product also contains the same anti-aging properties and I feel like they really work, providing smoother- and younger-looking skin.

    This product can be bought for £49.

    Caudalie’s Vinosource SOS Thirst Quenching Serum

    The Vinosource SOS Thirst Quenching Serum really works hard to hydrate your skin. If it wasn’t enough to feel the lightweight serum working, the gorgeous citrus scent is the deal maker as it’s amazingly refreshing. This serum is very good at balancing out the oils in your skin and is the perfect option to use underneath your makeup but I found that it worked really well on its own too.

    You can buy this serum for £29.

    I loved all of these Caudalie products and not because they all work incredibly well but the sumptuous scents that came with them were just amazing. They’re the perfect pamper collection and have given my skin a new, more vibrant look that feels hydrated and refreshed.

    All Caudalie products available from Fenwick

  • Diorskin Forever Makeup Review

  • Diorskin Forever Makeup Review

    I was really excited about trying out the new Diorskin Forever makeup range. I loved how they boasted ‘a perfect complexion on a daily basis’, so you can imagine I was eager to see if their products could live up to expectations. The main feature of their new range included a step-by-step guide to achieving this perfect complexion.

    diorskin forever makeup review

    Diorskin Forever Primer, Foundation and Setting Powder

    The guide was broken down into three stages:

    1. Primer

    The Diorskin Forever & Ever Wear primer works to provide the ‘essential first step to a high-perfection complexion’ and is potentially the most important part of the routine for creating a firm makeup base to improve hold. I felt like it actually neutralised my sallow (and sleep-deprived) skin. It made me look and feel fresh and ready to apply the next level of makeup. More importantly, though it felt light on my face and really helped to smooth out my minor imperfections.

    You can buy the primer for £29.

    1. Foundation

    The Diorskin Forever Fluid foundation gave a really nice matte complexion but its ‘melt-away formula’ meant that it gave light to medium coverage and still showed some of my freckles. I liked how it smoothed out the skin’s texture and worked well with the primer to create a soft and wearable finish. It was perfect for everyday wear and also contained SPF 35 that meant I felt protected.

    The foundation is priced at £33 and can be purchased in 12 shades.

    1. Setting Powder

    The Diorskin Forever & Ever Control powder provided was the finishing touch to the perfect complexion. The powder was so fine and translucent that it felt super silky and I loved how it smoothed out fine lines and open pores to really finish off the look. It worked really well with the foundation providing an overall finishing touch to my complexion.

    The powder is priced at £34.

    Diorskin forever review

    My no makeup (very tired) selfie!

    Diorskin Forever review

    My glowing complexion using the Diorskin Forever Primer, Foundation and Setting Powder

    By the time I’d used all three products – as outlined in their own guide – I could really see how they worked together to produce the perfect complexion. It looked natural, felt lightweight and didn’t dry out my skin.

    I’ve been using these three products for two weeks now and I really loved all of them but I wouldn’t necessarily describe the overall look as matte, it looked like it had more of a satin finish (I thing this is due to my oily skin. A more dry/normal/combination skin type you will get a more matt finish). For me, this was fine as I prefer it when my skin is a little dewy. I think the overall complexion looks really good and I would definitely recommend these for someone who wants to perfect their complexion and maintain a nice, lightweight feeling. 

    The Diorskin Forever range is available at Fenwicks Canterbury!


    Kiko Milano Cosmetics
  • Ell and Cee Bridal Lingerie

  • My last fashion makeup job pre maternity leave was with my fave – Ell and Cee Bridal Lingerie, shooting for their Winter Luxe Collection. It’s always so much fun working with a lovely girly team so with the edition of one of the best chocolate cakes I have ever eaten, was a damn good day at the office! Saying that it might not have been the best thing to be working on when you are the size of a small house with a beautiful pixie-like model, casually frolicking in on a freshly made bed…

    All I can say is thank god for the cake – I can worry about my post baby body goals another day lol!

    lucy jayne makeup baby bump

    I am lucky enough to work with this brand a lot and is my first recommendation when my brides are looking for something a bit special in the bridal lingerie department.

    In fact I was adorned with beautiful Ell and Cee goodies on my wedding day last November and it made me feel so glamorous getting ready for my wedding prep. Here are a few piccies… Ah the memories!

    Ell and cee silk gown
    ell and cee silk dressing gown
    ell and cee garter
    ell and cee bespoke silk knickers

    Back to the shoot & fabulous bridal lingerie…..

    “Ell & Cee is a luxe British Lingerie & Lounge brand. The signature look is deliciously feminine with a modern bohemian edge. Garments are made from the finest silks and chiffons to ensure the best quality and are manufactured in the UK – with many of the garments hand finished in house. The more bridal inspired pieces will be launched early next year with lace up details, embellished bras and cut out knickers in soft Champagne and pale Ivory.”

    The No Makeup – Makeup

    The feel of this shoot was paired back and relaxed. Coupled with the luxury of the room style and white washed walls of the location house it all fitted perfectly. Hair and makeup was completely minimal. That gorgeous, no makeup – makeup look! Of course there was makeup, not loads but applied in a way to give flawless glowing skin. Basically how we would all like to wake up in the morning… Lol!

    Here is a before and after picture of the gorge model Laura, you can see how lovely and even her skin tone is with a lightweight foundation and highlighting. No heavy contouring here kids, just a subtle mix of lighter toned concealer blended with her foundation to ‘lift’ where the light would catch her face and a mix of cream highlighters on top to give that uber dewy feel.

    Lucy jayne makeup natural makeup look

    Lucy jayne makeup natural makeup look

    Here is a slightly better shot to show the highlighting on her face (cheekbones, brow bone, bridge of her nose and cupids bow) as the natural light hit her face.

    The finished article!! Some of my favourite images from this beautiful shoot. 
    ell and cee bridal lingerie lucy jayne makeup
    ell and cee bridal lingerie lucy jayne makeup
    Ell & cee winter luxe lingerie
    ell and cee bridal lingerie lucy jayne makeup
    Ell & cee winter luxe lingerie
    ell and cee bridal lingerie lucy jayne makeup

    All garments available now, so its only fair you treat yourself.. It is Christmas after all!! 

    Ell & Cee, shop the lingerie collection: &

    Ell & Cee feature on Festival Brides Blog:

    Model Laura Elliot


    Here is my editorial gallery that showcases some of the previous Ell & Cee campaigns:

    (My wedding photos are by Benjamin Toms)

    Lilfox - available at
  • Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow

  • Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow Makeup Review

    Here is my review on this beaut of a product! I am not one to follow the crowd, but here I make an exception! I have wasted so much money in the past on products that get rave reviews but don’t live up to the hype. After purchasing the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow I am now in love with this beautiful product.

    Let me start with the packaging; Visually this product looks every bit as luxurious as you would hope for in a high end product. It is a shiny golden beacon and whenever I have a makeup savvy bride in my chair; I know she can’t wait for me to use it! I apply it on every face I makeup and it gives the perfect sculpted enhancement.

    The bronzer ‘Sculpt’ side is highly pigmented which means a little product goes a long way. It can be used to softly sculpt the face or build it up for deeper bronzed look – depending on what finish the client requires.

    The highlighter ‘Glow’ side has a delicate golden sheen, and is perfect for creating a luminous sun-kissed highlight. This highlighter catches the light perfectly and it really does makes the skin glow in a pretty and youthful way. I am pleased that it doesn’t create the harsh metallic sparkle that some highlighters can have. Apply it anywhere the light might catch for a soft glow; the cuspids bow, brow bone, temples, cheek bones, collar bone, shoulders and sometimes the bridge or tip of the nose!.. This product is a perfect 10 and my new favourite!

    Here are some of my recent bridal clients that have had the Filmstar Bronze and Glow treatment. They look ready for the Red Carpet!

    filmstar bronze and glow
  • Talika Lipocils Eyelash Gel Review

  • Talika Eyelash serum review
    talika Liposils Expert review

    Talka Lipocils Eyelash Gel Review

    I was really excited that I had the opportunity to try some of Talika’s key products. The two that I am trialling are the Lipocils Expert eyelash growth gel and Eyebrow Lipocils growth gel.

    I have been using the eyelash serum for 28 days, but silly me I was only using it once a day (at night) when its recommended twice (morning and night)!

    I have been selling my lashes short, but from today I will now be applying it properly and I will give you a little update of my eyelash progress when I post about my new ‘Brooke Shields’ eyebrows… Here’s hoping!!  

    So back to the Talika Lipocils. I have tried a few other eyelash growth products and I must say that the Talika packaging and the brush applicator is by far the nicest. The brush is so slick that it enables you to apply the gel to your lash line and then comb the lashes from root to tip with the serum, making sure they are thoroughly coated.

    The website states that you should experience eyelashes that are naturally longer, darker and curlier in just 28 days with this eyelash enhancing complex… I do agree!! Hurrah!

    I am lucky as I have pretty decent eyelashes but after having party lashes removed (lash clusters with a very strong glue that last 7-10 days), I felt like my lashes were quite patchy and damaged. The Lipocils Expert has offered the TLC that my lashes needed. The before and after aren’t as dramatic as I had hoped but my lashes are certainly a lot more even, with added length and they are slightly darker. Hopefully, in the next 28 days, there will be even more of an improvement. 

    Talika Lipocils is available in the UK from SPACE.NK.apothecary

    Talika eyelash serum before and after review
    My lashes before the 28 day trial with Lipocils Expert
    Talika Lipocils eyelash serum before and after review
    My lashes after the 28 day trial with and without mascara. (The same mascara has been used in both the before and after photos)
    Kiko Milano Cosmetics

  • Glamorous 1940s Bridal Makeup Tutorial

  • Glamorous 1940s Bridal Makeup Tutorial

    This look is really glamorous and perfect for the brides that love a dramatic eye… I don’t think you should really hold back on the lips and cheeks either! You know they say you should only accentuate two of your features ( lips & eyes/cheeks & eyes/cheeks & lips), well I don’t think that really applies to this look! 

    Heres how to go glam 40s without going OTT!

    To create a good base for your eye shadow, apply a cream shadow from the eyelid to brow bone. This neutralises the eyelid and helps shadows and pigments stay put.

    I used MAC Paint Pot in Painterly £15.50

    For this era the palette was very soft with a hint of colour especially pinks and pastel tones, so I swept a pastel pink across the eyelid.

    1940s bridal makeup tutorial

    I used MAC Paint Pot in Let’s Skate £15.50

    1940s bridal makeup tutorial

    With a blending eye shadow brush apply a berry toned powder eye shadow to highlight the crease and give depth to the eyes. I also swept a small amount under the bottom lashes.

    I used MAC Eye shadow in Cranberry £13.00

    Crown Brush ‘Deluxe Crease Brush’ £3.49

    1940s bridal makeup tutorial

    Long lashes were key in the 1940s as they are today. Use an eyelash curler in a ‘pumping’ motion to curl the lashes to make them look more dramatic.

    Apply mascara on the top and bottom lashes generously in black.

    I Used Maybelline Great Lash Mascara £4.99

    Models Own Eyelash Curler £5.99

    1940s makeup tutorial

    Now apply your blush in a semi circle motion in a pinky rose tone to compliment the 40s palette

    I used MAC Well Dressed Powder Blush £18.00

    Real Techniques Blush Brush £9.99

    1940s makeup tutorial

    Exaggerate the natural lip line by applying the lipstick slightly over your natural lip line and cupids bow making the lips big and voluptuous. The lip colour of choice was more pink-toned than the reds of previous eras.

    I used MAC Mineralize Glass Lip gloss in Fashion Perk £19.00

    1940s makeup tutorial

    The finished glam look!

    1940s bridal makeup tutorial
    The finished look: 1940s Bridal Makeup Tutorial

    Creative links:

    Model: Laura Elliot

  • Swoon-Worthy 1970s Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial

  • 1970s Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial

    This is a great look for brides that prefer a more natural bohemian feel to their makeup and definitely one of 2015’s key summer trends. The main focus is on the eyes, and although the shadow is subtle the soft earthy tones buffed into the socket finished with strip lashes give a real doe-eyed effect.  The skin should be kept fresh with a light weight foundation and bronzer to add that beachy sun kissed feel. 

    Start by applying a fawn toned shadow to the eyelid.

    I used MAC Paint Pot in Groundwork £15.50

    The brush I used was Crown Brush Firm Shadow £4.59

    1970s Swoon-Worthy Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial
    1970s Swoon-Worthy Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial

    Eyeliner was another important tool in 70s makeup but to keep it more natural apply a brown cream liner along the lash line and then soften with the eyeshadow brush, extending it a little towards the outer lash line.

    I used Maybelline Gel Liner in Brown £7.99

    how to do 70s boho bridal makeup

    Build up the eye shadow colour but try to keep to natural and earthy tones. Blend a deeper taupe from the centre of the eyelid to the outer corner.

    how to do 70s boho bridal makeup

    Next blend a deeper shade of brown into the socket line and a little under the bottom lashes.

    I Used Seventeen ‘Peep Show’ Palette (no longer available). A great alternative is Clarins Eye Quartet Mineral Palette in ‘Forest’ £32.00

    The socket brush was Crown Brush Deluxe Crease £3.49

    how to do 70s boho bridal makeup
    TIP: Build up the colour slowly as you don’t want the eye shadow to look too heavy.

    Using a strip lash that compliments this style, normally I would opt for natural looking lash that is thicker at the base (for a Brigitte Bardot look) and has a natural finish. Fit the lash to your natural lash line, and trim the access from the outer corner of the strip.

    I used Ardell Demi Wispies False Eyelashes £5.49

    how to apply a strip lash

    Duo Striplash Adhesive ‘Dark Tone’ £8.39

    Using tweezers to hold the lash, press the lash into your upper lash line and hold into place until the glue has dried.

    how to apply strip lashes

    Instead of blush opt for a bronzer to create a tanned look. Use a natural-looking bronzer to achieve the effect as this gives the skin a healthy glow.

    I used Illamasqua Bronzing Duo £26.00

    Real Techniques Blush Brush £9.99

    how to do 70s boho bridal makeup

    Apply the bronzer anywhere on the face where the sun would naturally hit it. Sweep it from the forehead, to the cheeks, a little across the nose and then down to the chin.

    how to do 70s boho bridal makeup
    TIP: The soft shape you create should be like you are tracing the number 3, but if it starts to look like the number 3, its too heavy and you have applied way too much bronzer!

    To give that real fresh feel, finish the look with a nude lipstick or a frosted translucent gloss. For that real Boho look avoid lip liner and keep the lips as natural as possible.

    I Used Illamasqua Sheer Lip Gloss in Opulent £16.50

    Ta-Da!… The finished Boho 70s Bridal Look!!

    1970s Swoon-Worthy Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial
    Finished Look | 1970s Swoon-Worthy Boho Bridal Makeup Tutorial

    Creative links:

    Model: Laura Elliot




  • Illamasqua Loose Powder Review

  • Illamasqua Loose Powder Review….

    It’s that time of year and a lot of things in my kit are running on empty. One of my favourite products is a translucent powder from another brand and sadly one item that I needed to buy. I don’t know about other makeup artists but I do get comfortable with products, I buy the same when I need to replenish my kit and I don’t tend to branch out. If its not broke why fix it? Right?

    After reading some fantastic reviews on Illamasqua’s website for the Loose Powder I thought I would give it a go. I felt that if it wasn’t as good as the translucent powder I already use it would find itself in my ‘surplus to requirements’ drawer.

    I used it today on myself and oh lordy, I am a little bit in love! It is so similar to the one I already use but if its possible, its even finer, so concealing and diffusing any imperfections whilst leaving my skin a nice amount of matt. It also smells amazing!

    illamasqua loose powder review
    illamasqua loose powder review

    On myself and especially when I am working with brides I prefer to use a loose translucent powder that is so fine it diffuses fine lines, large pores, mattifies the skin whilst holding everything in place (i’m not asking for much am I?). The Illamasqua Loose Powder certainly ticked all of these boxes without my skin feeling weighed down with heavy product. I think that when it comes to creating flawless base for my brides (or anyone for that matter) face powder should be invisible, it should be there for setting and finishing and not to create another layer of product so in my opinion translucent loose powder is the way to go!

    Here are a coupe of shots to illustrate how my skin looks today, (my skin is quite oily with fine lines and large pores) so its nice to see how well these products have lasted! The products I am using are: Foundation, Concealer, Setting powder, Bronzer, Mascara & Eyebrow Gel.

    illamasqua loose powder review

    Here is a close up after I applied the translucent powder.

    illamasqua loose powder review

    Fresh faced with wet hair! You can see an overall look of my skin after applying the powder at 8am.

    illamasqua loose powder review

    This is me at 4 o'clock. Skin looking fabulous, I haven't reapplied any makeup and my pores are still covered, skin is semi-matt and makeup in place! WIN!


     I can’t wait to use this on my bride and her bridal party tomorrow!!




  • Find Your True Skin Tone

  • To Find your true skin tone is one of the most important things you can do to achieve a flawless complexion. If you don’t know your skin tone, don’t worry: here are some easy ways to find out!

    What’s Your Type?

    Your skin tone can easily be assessed just by observing it after you’ve been in the sun. At one end of the spectrum, if your skin tends to burn very easily without tanning, you have pale or ivory skin; on the other end of the spectrum, mahogany and darker skin types will tan quickly without burning. In the middle, light brown or olive skin burns sometimes but achieves a gradual tan.

    Of course, remember that no matter what part of the spectrum you’re on, you should always wear sunscreen when heading outside! Just because you might not burn easily, it doesn’t mean the penetrating rays aren’t harmful.

    Are you Hot or Cold?

    Your skin’s undertone influences so much about your image: your foundation choices, colors that work well with your skin, and metals that you should wear when the need for jewellery shopping strikes.

    There are three undertones: cool, warm and neutral. If your undertone is cool, the veins on your wrist look blue, your skin has the tendency to turn pink after you are in the sun and it also burns easily. Choosing a foundation for a cool undertone is about picking a product that has a slightly blue, red or pink tinge so it will work with your skin. When wearing jewellery, you probably look your best with silver or platinum pieces.

    On the other hand, a warm undertone has veins on the wrist that look green and skin will turn brown in the sun. Wearing gold jewellery looks great on warm undertones. If this applies to you, you want a foundation that has a yellowish or golden tinge to it to flatter your complexion.

    Stuck in the Middle

    If your skin isn’t warm or cold, you could have a neutral tone. You might have veins that appear both blue and green, and you probably suit both gold and silver jewellery. A neutral shade of foundation often works best.

    When applying foundation, the last thing you want is to end up with stripes or makeup that doesn’t match your skin tone. Even if you know what your skin tone is, you should always test foundation properly. You can do this with the use of a Q-tip. Dab it into a foundation tester and then apply it to the middle of your jawline. If the color seems to vanish into your skin, you’ve found the perfect color match.

    Test the Tone

    If you’re still unsure about your skin tone, try this test:

    • Stand in front of the mirror.
    • Swipe your hair away from your face and tie it up so that it isn’t going to get in the way.
    • Take a beige and a white item of clothing and hold them in front of your face one at a time.
    • Which color looks better against your skin? If you tend to look better against the white, then you have a warm undertone. If beige is your color, then you have cooler undertones.

    Make a Splash with the Right Color

    Now that you know more about your skin tone, what colors work with it? If you don’t take your skin tone in consideration when choosing the colors you want to wear, this can cause them to clash against your skin.

    So, here’s a quick guide in choosing the most flattering shades:

    • Warm-toned skin tends to look good in colors that you would call warm, such as yellow, orange, as well as earthy tones like greens and browns.
    • Cool tones pop with colors such as green, blue, purple, and even pink.

    Sometimes it helps to have a makeup cheat sheet, enabling you to know what colors work with any and every skin tone (especially helpful on rushed mornings!). Top picks that flatter all skin tones include deep purple on your eyes, peach blush that brings youthful health to your complexion, gold on your eyes, and a sheer pink gloss that should be a staple in every woman’s makeup bag.

    Now you’re sorted when it comes to mastering your skin tone so you can look your best while flaunting gorgeous skin.

    Find Your True Skin Tone

  • Botox for the Wedding Day?

  • Would you have botox for the wedding day? Here is the review of my experience with botox.

    In the run up to my wedding I didn’t really leave myself much time to have any pre wedding pampering. Time suddenly slips away and before you know it you are getting married next week! This was certainly the case for me. As you know from my previous posts that my main issue was my skin, and would it behave for the big day? It was hard and I was vigilant with my skin. Antibiotic cream in the morning, at night, herbal skin tablets, lots of water and I didn’t pick!! I also tried to go makeup free as much as possible before the run up too. 

    The treatment options

    I treated my mum to some teeth whitening and whilst chatting to her aesthetic nurse I got to thinking about treating myself. All of the skin peels, dermabrasion or laser therapy were way to close to the big day and my skin was being so good I didn’t want to rock the boat and upset it. One little thing that had been getting to me were my frown lines… Now I know I’m not a wrinkled old prune yet but I hadn’t been wearing my glasses in prep for the big day and I started to become very aware of my frown lines that had been disguised by my glasses. I bought this up to Jo the Aesthetic Nurse and she reassured me that there was still time to have a little something done before the wedding day.

    wedding day botox

    Markers for where I would have Botox


    Immediately after Botox was applied. Little bit bumpy under the skin but it goes back to normal quickly.

    Botox is something that I have always been curious about and had many conversations with my brides about: Would I? Have they? Does it hurt? Will anyone notice?? Don’t get me wrong it’s not something that I have ever recommended to anyone but it’s always an interesting topic of conversation. I booked in my consultation with Jo and we discussed where I wanted to be ‘smoother’ and she explained what Botox did, the benefits and the procedure.

    Here is a bit of info about Botox

    Botox is the brand name of botulinum toxin and has been used cosmetically for over 10 years, it is also used to treat some medical conditions. Botox is a purified protein which is injected into specific muscles to temporarily relax them.

    I had it injected in two areas – the forehead and in between my brows. The effect wasn’t immediate, it can take up to 10 days to take effect but mine started in 4. I must admit that I did feel panicky when one side took effect and the other was a bit slower! I had one very ‘expressive’ eyebrow, and of course something I didn’t want on the wedding day. Jo was just at the end of the phone and reassured me that because the muscles are a lot stronger on one side it would take a bit longer, and sure enough the next day my eyebrows stared to look a lot more even. Phew!!


    This photo cracks me up! This is me raising BOTH of my eyebrows

    natural Botox

    A couple of days later - very happy with the results and thank goodness my eyebrows are looking even. Hurrah!

    A week after the wedding I had a follow up appointment where Jo assessed my face and gave me a top up in any areas that needed it – I had a tiny bit in a really stubborn frown line.

    I was/am so happy with the result, it’s subtle enough that no one would notice but to me it made a huge difference!

    Benjamin Toms Photography Benjamin Toms Photography


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  • Mini Moon at the Ox Pasture Hall (Hotel Review)

  • Back in September I was contacted by a very nice man by email, it wasn’t the normal ‘I have $1000000 and want to give it all to you if you can give me your bank details and pin number’ spam emails I am used to! It was an invitation for a complimentary stay in what looked like a beautiful country hotel – The Ox Pasture Hall, Luxury Boutique Hotel in Yorkshire, in return for an honest review. As I live in the South I thought it was a bit to far for a one day stay and I pretty much wrote it off, that was until I had a light bulb moment!! We were planning on having a few days away after our wedding for a mini moon and hadn’t decided where to go. We are an outdoorsy couple and fancied going somewhere in the UK for a post wedding chill out. When I realised we could bring our dogs it sealed the deal! 

    We set off on our journey hoping for beautiful countryside, lovely dog walks, friendly people and importantly somewhere we can unwind. That is certainly what we found!

    Ox Pasture Hotel North Yorkshire

    The Ox Pasture Hall is set in amongst 17 acres of lush green countryside surrounded by fields, woodland and a lot of sheep! It’s a cosy retreat and regarded as the most romantic hotel in Yorkshire! When we arrived we were checked into our room which was an absolute delight. It was a large airy suite with plenty of natural light (as a bridal makeup artist I am always drawn to the natural light!) There was the added luxury of a tv a in each room, huge bed and his and hers basins along with a walk in power shower in the most beautiful bathroom (this was especially nice because our shower at home is from the dark ages). It was rubbish weather and a little walk from the main building, but this wasn’t an issue because there was shelter and it was nice to walk through the prettiest courtyards. I can imagine how lovely it must look on a sunny day!

    Bedroom Suite at Ox Pasture Hotel Yorkshire

    Bedroom Suite at Ox Pasture Hotel YorkshireWe booked in our afternoon tea reservation at 3pm so we quickly tidied ourselves up and went down to the bar. The afternoon tea was served in the ‘snug’ area in front of a warm cosy fire and it was amazing! I love nothing more than a good brew, cakes and scones (in that order) so this was such a treat for me. Mr Brown is quite the ‘mans-man’ and didn’t really get what I was fussing about untill he tucked into the warm home made scone! We can safely say he is an afternoon tea and scone convert now! The dogs were allowed everywhere other than the restaurant so we had them with us, Betty the pug was too nosey to settle down but our staffie Murdoch laid in front of the fire while we had a little snuggle on the sofa and sunk into a massive food coma. [slideshow_deploy id=’1892′]

    The hotel was a nice combination of a warm rustic country pub, stylish restaurant and luxurious bedrooms. My favourite part was the pub and the welcoming rooms that surrounded it, furnished with chesterfields, and over sized cushions. It was a shame that while there was a roaring rustic fire in one room, in another was a dated electric fire. Being in the wedding industry I can help but have a nosey at the wedding facilities. The Dovecote Suite is purpose built function room that resembles a large modern barn, it sits amongst the rest of the building seamlessly and is the main facility for weddings, like all weddings the occasion is the same but the brides style is different and the barn-like function room is a perfect canvass should a bride want to dress it with their own personal touches!

    Ox Pasture Hall Wedding Venue Yorkshire

    We booked our evening meal quite late as we was still so full from afternoon tea! Our waiter bought us out two glasses of prosecco while we mulled over the menu. Us Browns are really into our food and everything sounded delicious. When the food was presented to us it looked like something from master chef and tasted incredible, I might even have to say Michelin star standard! We enjoyed our food whilst our friendly waiter chatted away with his local knowledge and funny anecdotes.

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    We retired to the snug where we enjoyed red wine in front of the lovely open fire, and like the sociable couple we are checked our Facebook and Twitter! Who said romance is dead?…

    Ox Pasture Hotel North Yorkshire

    The following day we woke after an amazing sleep in the giant bed, and it must have been that quiet that even the dogs didn’t wake us. We had to get a riggle on so we could make the most of the hotels grounds and of course breakie before our drive back home, daan saaf! Mr Brown opted for the standard full English but I was still so full from our 3 course meal so I went continental. We grabbed our walking boots and explored the hotel grounds, in the rain, with the dogs.

    We had such a great stay and it really is a charming and friendly place. I think the only shame is that it isn’t closer to us, especially when the barman was telling us about the Christmas accommodation. How nice to be able to stay somewhere as lovely as that and be catered for, so we don’t have to worry about cooking the Christmas dinner! 

    The Ox Pasture Hall is close to so many great spots to visit. While we was here we made the most of the fantastic surroundings and explored the area.

    Hole of Horcum North Yorkshire Moors

    Hole of Horcum North Yorkshire Moors

    Foss Falls North Yorkshire Moors

    Foss Falls North Yorkshire Moors