Addicted to Lush!

If you haven’t heard of Lush yet then where have you been hiding!? I use their products so much I can’t believe that I haven’t already taken the time to write about them!

So many fantastic products are available and every day more and more products are released including limited editions! Here’s a review of some of the Lush items I’ve tried recently:

Lava Lamp Bath Bomb

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A lovely bright orange bath bomb with three big purple dots on the side, this bomb contains orange flower absolute (one of the most popular essential oils used in perfumery), tangerine and mandarin oils.

This sounds a silly thing to say in view of its name, but it really does make your bath water look like a Lava Lamp!! This is down to the extra virgin olive oil contained in the bomb which provides that “lava lamp” effect across the top of the water.

This bath bomb is a very noisy, fizzy bomb which leaves an amazing orange scent on your skin (and in the bathroom!) for hours after use. It’s a very nourishing bath bomb – ideal for dry skin or for days where skin has been exposed to the sun for too long. Some users have found this bath bomb to be too oily, but I’ve not found this to be the case.

The only downside to this lovely citrus bomb is the mess that is left behind in the bath tub! The olive oil results in the purple “lava” sticking to the side of the bath and does take some elbow grease to get off again! Not the thing you look forward to doing after having a nice relaxing bath!

Other than the cleaning session of the bathroom you have to undertake after using Lava Lamp, it is one of my favourites. The strong citrus scent is really relaxing and the colours and noisy fizz make it one of the most exciting bath bombs!

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Twilight Bath Bomb

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This is one of Lush’s most popular bath bombs so I put it to the top of my testing list! I have to admit the name does put me off (makes me think of vampires!) and I don’t think the name really suits the colour and scent of this bomb….. maybe it’s just me.

Twilight is a lovely soft pink coloured bomb and it’s main scent is lavender. This bath bomb dissolves far more slowly (and much less violently than Lava Lamp!) and creates a lovely thick pink and blue froth. Once the bomb is fully dissolved, it leaves the water a lovely violet colour filled with tiny pieces of silver glitter.

As well as lavender, this bath bomb also contains ylang ylang oils and vanilla essence to stop the lavender scent from being over-powering. This bath bomb is absolutely perfect for using in the evenings if you are struggling to sleep.

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Cup O Coffee Face Mask

As a self-confessed coffee addict, it’s like this product was made especially for me! An exfoliating mask designed for both the face and body, this amazing mask features a blend of coffee and cocoa extract. The coffee smell is dominating but you can also smell a lovely underlying chocolate aroma too, and the algarve nectar and vanilla absolute give it a bit of sweetness.

As a coffee lover I found the smell absolutely amazing! Other’s have said they aren’t too keen but I think it’s lovely! You add a generous amount of the mask to your face or body, massage it for a few minutes, leave it for 10-15 minutes and then rinse it away. The coffee grains in the mask will remove all the dead/dry skin and leave your skin feeling really clean and refreshed.

I’m not a big fan of face masks generally, but this is most certainly the best I have tried. A definite addition to the favourites list!

Bubblegum Lip Scrub

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This is the only Lush lip scrub I have bought so far but it is by far my favourite going by the smells of the scrubs alone! I loved this product so much I bought several for my family and friends for Birthday presents and demanded my sister bought one for herself when she visited the Lush shop in Cheltenham with me!!

The smell is amazing and this lip scrub works so well! The scrubs clear dead skin and flakiness from lips and make them feel so soft and smooth! The scrubs are mostly made from castor sugar and jojoba oil – to exfoliate and moisturise.

The smell is amazing – strawberry bubblegum flavour – and the colour is a bright hot pink. To use you just need a small scoop on your finger, and then rub it all over your lips in a circular motion, and then just add your favourite lip balm afterwards to moisturise.

Don’t be put off by the seemingly expensive price (£5.50 for this little tub), as you don’t need much for each use and you will find this small pot will last you for at least six months (unless you start eating it out of the pot!) I’m looking forward to trying some of the other flavours now – honey or popcorn are next on my list!

Dragons Egg Bath Bomb

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Ooh another one of my favourites!!! I love the name too!

This bath bomb begins with a white outer layer of Dragon’s Egg foam, which then releases “Dragon scales” in the form of rice paper confetti and popping candy!!

This bath bomb contains bergamot and citrus flavours and is quite a zesty bomb. It’s very refreshing and is recommended for use in the mornings or during the winter months.

It is a slow release bomb, creating more foam and froth than bubbles and fizz, but once the centre is cracked, it begins throwing out a beautiful golden, yellow, glittery flow. Due to the golden inner core your bath water ends up a beautiful amber colour with golden glitter floating in it!

Don’t be fooled by Dragon’s Egg’s relatively plain exterior! Dragon’s Egg is an absolute must try!

Big Blue Bath Bomb

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One of the key ingredients in this bath bomb is seaweed! Arame seaweed to be precise, as it is rich in vitamins and minerals. Big Blue also contains lavender, lemon and sea salt.

Big Blue turns the bath water a lovely vivid blue colour, as the seaweed swirls around the bath before sinking to the bottom.

A lovely invigorating and refreshing bath bomb, I did find this bomb to be more de-toxifying than moisturising but it is definitely one I would use again – despite having to clean up the remnants of seaweed from the bottom of the bath afterwards!

Pink Fun Bar

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Fun bars are a squidgy versatile product (like play-dough) which can be used as a bubble bar, shampoo, shower gel, soap and you can even shave with it!

Fun Bars consists of several different colours and flavours – Blue (lavender scent), Pink (Vanilla and Sweets flavour), Purple (Blackcurrant/Blackberry smell), Green (Lemon and Lime flavour), Red (Mandarin and Orange flavour), Orange (Orange Flavour) and Yellow (Vanilla flavour).

It is recommended that you break a bit off the fun bar to use a bit at a time, and keep the remainder somewhere cool so it doesn’t “melt”. The first time I used the fun bar, I used it like a bubble bar – I pulled off a chunk and held it under the running tap water and soon the bath was full of lovely bubbles.

The first Fun Bar I tried was the Pink one (although it looks a bit multicoloured as I accidentally mixed some blue and purple in with this one!). I must admit overall I was a little bit disappointed with the product. Yes the bath was full of lovely bubbles but I found that I could hardly smell the scent of the pink one, and I was disappointed that it didn’t turn the bath water a lovely pink colour either, plus the bubbles soon disappeared.

I found that using the fun bar as a soap made the scent much more prominent, but still no where near as strong as if you are using a bath bomb. On the plus side I pulled off a big chunk of the bar to use but didn’t even use a third of this – so it’s much more long lasting than I originally thought.

I hope you enjoyed my first Lush blog – if not then I am afraid I have two boxes full of Lush products I am hoping to blog about in the near future!

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Painswick Rococo Garden

We live literally down the road from this beautiful place but have only this weekend got round to visiting it! I visited here around 13 years ago when member of my husbands family got married but didn’t have the opportunity to explore it properly.

We thought about visiting after a a report was shown on the news that it was the time of the year where their famous snowdrops make an appearance. They tell you when they are all in bloom to keep a look out for the particularly tall Galanthus Atkinsii which was discovered in the 1800’s by an estate worker.

So what is Rococo? A style of art and architecture originating in France and and Italy in the early 1700’s, rococo was a development of the baroque.

The Garden’s restoration was led by Lord and Lady Dickinson and started in 1984, at which point it was a wilderness of trees and brambles. The Garden became a charitable trust in 2012.

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We visited on a Saturday and arrived at around midday. It was already rather busy by this time but we didn’t have to wait long to get tickets. Tickets are £6.20 per adult but if you choose gift aid entry tickets they are £7 each and Painswick Rococo Garden can claim much more tax back from the government if you choose this option.

They provide you with a map when you buy your tickets but to be honest you don’t need it. You follow the walk paths around the gardens and along the way you come across the following:

Eagle House

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Beech Walk and Gothic Alcove

Snowdrop Grove

Fish Pond

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Bowling Green

Plunge pool

Kitchen Garden

Maze

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and finally; the Red House which is where wedding ceremony’s are hosted.

I’ve seen mixed reviews about the on site cafe at Rococo Garden – we were willing to give it a try but it was jam-packed from the time we arrived until the time we left (which must be a good thing I suppose!) so we didn’t get the chance to try it on this occasion.

Overall a very nice day out which gets you out in the open air and gives you the opportunity to take some lovely photos. We all said when we were there that its the type of place which you could visit several times a year and it would be completely different dependant on the season.

Another thing I thought was brilliant was they hold events such as an Easter Trail and Shakespeare performances of As You Like It (30th June 2017 and 1st July 2017) and A Midsummer Nights Dream (21st July 2017). I really think my sister and I will come back for the Midsummer Night’s dream performance!

Find out more information about visiting Painswick Rococo Garden and the events they have on here.

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Sugar Bear Hair Vitamins – worth the investment?

I first came across Sugar Bear hair tablets on Instagram – to be honest I regularly come across a wide variety of products along the same lines – products with bright, colourful, loud adverts which make a multitude of promises about what the product can do and urging you to purchase them as soon as possible! Some of these companies even make you sign up to regular subscriptions, and the majority of these companies often end up with very bad reviews – with examples of money being taken from bank accounts without authorisation, refunds being un-actioned and money back guarantees not being worth the paper they are written on.

I’m not usually taken in by most of the latest fads – unfortunately I’m one of those people who has invested in products in the past only to be disappointed to find they are a complete waste of money.

My hair has always been extremely fine and prone to breakage, I’ve always wanted much thicker hair but can’t afford the investment and maintenance of hair extensions, and to be honest was worried about the long term damage that hair extensions can cause.

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After seeing repeated adverts for Sugar Bear Hair tablets, one of the first things I noticed was how responsive their customer services representatives were to Facebook and Instagram comments and questions. Unlike some products I have looked into before, there were no negative comments appearing about either the product or the customer service that customers had received, which was definitely a good start!

The Sugar Bear Hair tablets promise to “give you everything you need to grow the healthiest, longest hair possible”, it does this by:

  • Growing longer and stronger hair
  • Nourishing your hair from within
  • Improving overall health
  • Increasing hair strength
  • Improving hair elasticity
  • Stopping hair breakage

They also improve the strength and shine of your nails. The vitamins are gluten free, gelatine free, soy free and are suitable for vegetarians. They contain Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin B-6, Folic Acid, Vitamin B-12, Biotin, Pantothenic Acid, Iodine, Zinc, Choline, Inositol, as the active vitamins and minerals. The gummies are made with real berries, coconut oil, and a dash of sugar. A full list of ingredients and why they are used in the vitamins can be found here.

The gummies are shipped Worldwide, are suitable for both genders and all hair types and have no side effects.

In the Sugar Bear Hair store they have three sets of products available;

  • One months supply of vitamins (60 tablets) for $29.99
  • Three months supply of vitamins (180 tablets) for $82.99 (normally $89.97). The three month supply also comes with a free Sugar Bear Hair bamboo hairbrush.
  • Six months supply of vitamins (360 tablets) for $161.99 (normally $179.94). The six month supply also comes with a free Sugar Bear Hair bamboo hairbrush and a Sugar Bear Hair makeup bag.

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International shipping from the US to the UK starts at $10 for standard delivery and increases to $20 for DHL delivery. Remember that the prices and shipping are all quoted in dollars, so make sure you calculate what the costs will be in your own currency  before you order if you are ordering outside of the U.S.

They do offer a repeat subscription service which you can opt out of if you just want the one off order, but otherwise they will send you a new bottle of vitamins every 30 days.

I began by ordering a months worth to try them – they do say you should start noticing the difference to your hair after this time. The suggested amount of vitamins is two per day so I followed this dosage for a month.

After the first month I really did start to notice a difference. My hair began to get thicker and I had far less breakage when I was brushing it. I also noticed that I had a lot less hair fall than usual and I noticed a difference in how quickly my eyelashes, eyebrows and nails were growing too! Some customers have said they don’t experience the improvement in eyebrows and eyelash growth whereas others have so it must vary from person to person, as I am sure most results do.

Before even finishing my first months supply I had decided that I wanted to continue to use the vitamins, however I was concerned about the price of them going forward, as a bottle a month would work out to be quite expensive.

I ultimately decided to order a six months supply (with which I did receive a free makeup bag and hairbrush) but decided that instead of taking the recommended dose of two vitamins a day that I would half this and take one vitamin a day. This meant that each bottle would last me two months instead of one and the six month supply I had ordered would actually last me a whole year.

I have been taking the vitamins for three months now – one month with two tablets a day and two months at half the recommended dose of one tablet a day. After three months my hair is stronger and shinier and is growing quicker and thicker than it ever has before. The real proof to me was one morning when I tried to tie my hair up ready for a morning’s gym session – I hate wearing my hair up so hardly ever do it but normally when I do, a standard hair bobble will tie round my hair four times until it is tight enough so that it wont come loose. On this occasion, and since then, I have only been able to tie my same hair bobbles around my hair three times, which shows the difference in thickness that the tablets have made to my hair!

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Overall, I highly recommend Sugar Bear Hair tablets and would class them as a very good quality product. I would suggest doing as I have done and ordering just a months supply to start with to see how you get on with them. If you have several friends who want to try them at the same time you might want to order the three or six month packs to get the individual bottles and the shipping slightly cheaper than you would if you were ordering just one pack for yourself.

Any further questions about the product or shipping etc, Sugar Bear Hair customer services can be contacted by email on hello@sugarbearhair.com.

Follow Sugar Bear Hair on Instagram here.

P.S when I visited their site today and added my email address to be sent the Sugar Bear Hair newsletter they allowed me to download this really useful guide on how to grow longer and stronger hair! Find the guide here. There’s some brilliant hints and tips, great hairstyles and even hair mask recipes in this guide – check it out!

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