Monday, 28 April 2014


The weather here this last week has been utterly mental - beautiful sunshine & bbq weather one day & then torrential rain & woodburner-going foul weather the next!  It's a well known fact that you can experience 4 seasons in one day in Scotland - and we do frequently! - so when we do have a lovely day, we just have to get out & enjoy it.

We're so fortunate to live in a lovely village with a huge country park just a 2 minute walk from home so this is where we usually head with smallest child on his bike & mad hound in tow.  Conveniently, it's also the walk we have to take en route to the pub, not that it's been warm enough to sit out in the beer garden yet!

However, Murphy (aka Turtle, for some unknown reason!) is happiest just sat at my feet as I sit in my office typing out my blog posts & updating the school website I run ( in case you want a peek!!)

I've been feeling like a need a project to work on again since finishing the school library & after talking to my friend the other day, we've decided we're going to start restoring & updating furniture again.  She used to do it years ago before she had children & I used to do it when we lived in France so we've decided to join forces & start up a wee enterprise.  When I think of the beautiful old pieces I used to find in brocantes & vide greniers, I could cry that I'm so far away now!!  My speciality back then was to revamp old beds, particularly lits corbeille & lits bateau.  I loved transforming  them from manky old pieces that looked like they were fit only for the bonfire to beautiful, repainted & reupholstered beds.  I'll try & hunt out some old before & after photos.  I also had some stunning old armoires too but unfortunately, when we moved back to the UK, we had to sell most of the pieces we had, booo!  I also did an upholstery course years ago but I might do another course to refresh my memory.  I've still got the kit though so I'm part-way there!

Anyhoo, we've stocked up on our first few pieces of furniture, fabric & Annie Sloan supplies & tomorrow.....we paint!!  I'm actually really looking forward to it & just from talking to a few friends about it, we've already got 3 people interested to see what we do & one lady has specifically asked if we can find & restore a dresser for her!  

So watch this space folks, there could be a new business about to be born!!  Exciting stuff......!

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Review ~ Clarins Be Long mascara

Clarins Be Long mascara, full sized price £21.00, see here.

This came as part of a great gift with purchase last year & to be honest, I put it in my makeup drawer & kind of forgot about it!  I found it last week so thought I'd better try it out.

First of all, the packaging.  As this was a GWP, it's a weeny sized tube, ideal for travelling & is not the usual Clarins gold casing.  I sometimes find these sample sized mascaras really difficult to use purely due to the length - or lack thereof - of the wand but because this has quite a small brush anyway, it was pretty easy to use.

It has a plastic wand & works really well to lengthen & lift the lashes & it grips the tiniest of lashes perfectly.  This was the first time I'd ever used a Clarins mascara but I was pleasantly pleased with it.  It removed easily but there always seems to be the teeniest bit of residue left behind the following morning.  Clarins say,

"This revolutionary new mascara combines an instant strengthening formula and exclusive new brush design making it an absolute must-have for lashes lacking in length."

I seem to be on a mascara mission this week!  What's your favourite?

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Review ~ Barry M Gelly Hi Shine Lips

I'm a big fan of lip colour pencils so when I saw these new ones pop up on the Barry M stand a few weeks back, I was drawn to Sirius shade no.4, perfect for spring!  These are a lot slimmer than your standard 'chubby' sized pencils but I actually prefer this as you have a slimmer, therefore more precise nib to apply with.

As the name suggests, this is nice & glossy but without any of the stickiness of a lip gloss (so no peeling your hair off your lips after a strong gust of wind!)  It applies so easily & feels more like wearing a lip balm but because it is so glossy, it doesn't wear that well.  After a coffee break, it had all disappeared, not even a hint of colour left behind so definitely doesn't have the staying power of the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain (seriously, who thinks of these never-ending names?)

This certainly wouldn't stop me from buying it again though, it's so handy to keep in your bag & I wear it when my lips are feeling a tad on the dry side as it feels so nourishing.  It's a great purchase for the bargain price of £4.99, currently on 3 for 2 at Superdrug.

Photo taken pre-coffee break!!

Have you tried any of these yet?

Review ~ L'Oréal False Lash Flutter mascara

I realised that seeing as I have a drawer full of mascaras, I should really be reviewing them.  The leading brand for me has always been L'Oréal, I think they've really nailed their mascara formulas.  It's no secret that the False Lash Telescopic is my all time favourite but this is pretty darned excellent too!

It has a plastic wand that is 'wing' shaped to help lift & lengthen your lashes.  It works beautifully on the top lashes although is a little more difficult to use on the bottom ones, it's takes a bit of getting used to!  But once you do, it's fabulous.  I've tried to photograph it as well as possible to show the shape of the wand but it wasn't easy!

As you can see from the before & after photos, it really does lengthen the lashes & as with all the L'Oréal formulas that I've tried (most of them!), it doesn't flake, smudge or run & removes easily.  Like the Miss Manga mascara, it works best when it's been opened for a week or so to help thicken the formula slightly.

Not bad......just look past the late-night reading sessions dark circles please!!

What's your favourite mascara?

Monday, 21 April 2014

Makeup essentials for Marrakech

Makeup for Marrakech

Makeup for Marrakech by fortytherapy 

So, as promised, here's what I intend to take in my (small!) makeup bag to Marrakech.  I'm only going for 4 days, it'll (hopefully) be hot & we intend to do lots of walking about & sightseeing so plastering my face in makeup will not be high on my agenda!  I'll only need the bare minimum of products & these few tried, tested & loved beauties will do the trick quite nicely thank you.

1. Cath Kidston cosmetic bag 

Pretty self-explanatory, a decent sized makeup bag in a wipeable oil-cloth.  Large enough to pack everything into but small enough to not take up too much room.

2.  Ambre Solaire Lip protector spf 20

I won't bother wearing coloured lipstick in the daytime but I know from past experience that sunburnt lips are not nice so I'll slick some of this on to protect them.

3.  Ambre solaire BB cream spf 30

Now this is the only thing on this list that I haven't tried yet so I'll get some & try it before I go to make sure my skin doesn't react to it.  This offers a good spf & being a BB cream aswell, it'll offer some colour to my face so as not to frighten the locals too much!!

4.  Bourjois BB bronzing cream

I bought this for the first time last year as soon as it was released & got through 2 bottles during summer alone! It's great on it's own to give a lovely sunkissed (not tangoed!) look but I also mix it with my foundation when my skin gets tanned so I don't have to buy darker ones!  I'll pop a few pumps of this into a little travel-sized pot so I don't have to take the whole bottle - a little goes a looong way!

5.  Sleek blusher in Sahara

I bought this beauty the other day & so far, am loving it.  It's so pigmented that a little goes a long way but offers a beautiful warm glow to your cheeks.  Ideal for when your face has a hint of a tan.  The only downside to taking this is that I'll have to also take a blusher brush.....

6.  Real Techniques blusher brush

Another fabulous offering from RT, the only blusher brush I use now.  I'm looking forward though to seeing what the new travel sized brushes are like when they get released as a smaller brush would be handier for travelling.

7.  L'Oréal False Lash Telescopic mascara

This, my friends, is my HG mascara & the one I go back time & time again.  L'Oréal have really nailed perfect mascaras & this is my favourite of the bunch.  I will tint my lashes before I go away though as I don't like wearing waterproof mascaras & don't want to resemble Alice Cooper when I use the pool!

8.  Rimmel Scandaleyes eyeshadow pencil in Tempting Turquoise

I've blogged about this Rimmel eyeshadow pencil before here & although I don't often wear it, it'll be perfect for a splash of colour.  It's the perfect formula too being waterproof as it won't disappear in the heat.

9.  Rimmel Scandaleyes kohl in Bronze

Bronze colours really make my green eyes stand out so this'll also be a good addition for nighttime looks.  Again, it's waterproof formula means it won't slide down my face if it's hot!

10.  Revlon lip butter in Candy Apple

Yet another product I've already blogged about & although it was nearly a year ago, I'm still as in love with this lip butter as ever!  It's the perfect bright colour that'll go with the tiny amount of clothes I intend taking & the moisturising formula is spot on!

11.  Boots No7 BB lip balm

First off, why is in not possible to clip items to Polyvore from the Boots website, it drives me mental?!  It took me 15 minutes of faffing around online to manage to get it on there......I digress.....
I bought one of these when Boots were handing out their £3 off vouchers.  It's a great nude colour, lasts well, isn't at all sticky, is hydrating & offers spf 15 - a makeup essential for me from now on!

12.  Elizabeth Arden Eight-Hour cream

Most people I know have a tube of this & I've been using it for around 12 years now.  I tend to buy the smaller sized tubes & always keep one in my bag.  It's a fabulous intensive lip balm & hydrates cuticles like nothing else.  I also sometimes add the merest slick to the tops of my cheekbones for that glowy/healthy-skinned effect!  Again, I'll pop some into a wee pot to save on space.

So there we have it, my minimal makeup essentials I'll be taking away with me.  I will of course do another post with my essential toiletries too!  If you want to click on the picture, it should take you to my Polyvore page where you'll find the links for the products.

Now, is there anything I've missed?!

Friday, 18 April 2014

Elemis skincare

Way back in October last year I was fortunate enough to win a Twitter giveaway of this fabulous skincare set by Elemis.  This is a brand I have very little knowledge of as they are generally only available online or in salons &, much to my distress, I haven't stepped inside a beauty salon for many years now.  In fact, the only product of theirs that I've ever tried (& loved, btw!) has been their Pro-radiance Illuminating Flash Balm that I got as a magazine freebie last summer!

But I was totally made up with winning this amazing set with it's own cosmetic bag, especially when I realised that the contents alone were worth £145!!  Let me talk you through them....

Soothing Chamomile Cleanser 200ml (£22.00)
I'm not sure if it's because I'm so used to either oil or balm cleansers now or whether it's the smell I'm not keen on, but either way, this is the only product that's not really floating my boat.  Don't get me wrong, it works perfectly well at removing makeup without any tautness of my skin afterwards, but I certainly wouldn't rush to buy this (or any other cream cleanser for that matter) again, I'll be sticking to balm cleansers.

Soothing Apricot Toner 200ml (£22.00)
This hydrating toner smells delicious!  It's fruity, obviously, but not in an overly sickly way & I use this alternatively with my Clarins Gentle Exfoliating Toner & in the mornings.  I like that it's a spray application too, I find it wastes less product.

White Flowers Lip & Eye Makeup Remover 28ml (£4.26 approx.)
This is a clear bi-phase remover that turns a milky white when mixed.  It works brilliantly at removing even the most stubborn of eye makeup & red lipstick but I'm still not a huge fan of an oily remover for my eyes.  The size is perfect for travelling though so I'll be saving it for my weekends away this year!

Papaya Enzyme Peel 50ml (£31.00)
I was in two minds whether or not to try this one out as my skin can be so sensitive & I suffer with rosacea too & usually, anything containing fruit acids (AHAs) can irritate it too much.  However, I read reviews online & everyone seemed to comment on how gentle this product was so I decided to give it a whirl - oh how glad I am that I did!!
It's a lovely thick cream that I smoothed over my freshly cleansed skin, avoiding the eye area.  I left it on for 10 minutes & had no tingling or reaction to it whatsoever.  On removal, my cheeks had the merest hint of pink, but no more than after a usual cleanse but oh my goodness, my skin was ridiculously smooth & soft afterwards!!  It really felt amazing & I will definitely repurchase this when I run out!

Pro-Collagen Oxygenating Night Cream 30ml (£57.00 approx.)
I am totally in love with this product, so much so that I don't want to use it as I don't want to run out!!  It smells divine & if I could find a perfume that smelled exactly the same, I'd wear it every single day!  It's a beautiful rich night cream that serves to plump up my skin with absolutely no greasiness, stickiness or puffiness the following morning.  I really cannot rave about it enough & I could cry as it's a product that is soooo out of my usual price range.  I'll have to keep an eye out for any offers on QVC as I would love to repurchase!!

Cellular Recovery Skin Bliss Capsules 14 capsules (£9.28 approx.)
This was a week's worth of these amazing moringa oil-filled capsules, 7 each of the rose (day) & lavender (night).  You break open the capsule, squeeze out the oil & smooth over your face & neck.  I love these too although I tend not to use the rose one in the morning as I'm not keen on using oils on my face during the day so have been using them both at night.  Rose isn't usually one of my favourite scents but this is so delicate that I don't mind it.  The lavender on the other hand is gorgeous!
Again, these are something that are usually out of my price range but I will be putting a set of these on my next Christmas list - are you listening Santa?!

So that's the run-down of my prize, amazing don't you think?!

Have you used Elemis products before?  Any other recommendations for me?

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Travelling light in Marrakech

Travelling light in Marrakech

Travelling light in Marrakech by fortytherapy 

So, as I've previously mentioned, myself & two friends are going to Marrakech in September & to say I'm already ridiculously excited is a HUGE understatement!!

We had said that we'll just travel with hand luggage, which is completely doable but after talking to one of my friends the other day about it, if we do that, we're going to be seriously short of shopping space, ahem ahem!!  So we might just book one large suitcase on too & share it but just for the sake of this post, let's just pretend I'm still only taking hand luggage!!

I'll be packing clothes that can be mixed & matched with each other, which is why the above colour palette is a bit 'meh' but bear with me!  I am acutely aware of dressing appropriately whilst in Morocco, hence the long trousers, skirts & dresses.  I've put in a lightweight cardigan from H&M & a scarf from Next, both of which are light-weight enough to be folded up & kept in a bag but can be worn to cover the shoulders when needs be.

I've bought a pair of these linen trousers from Next every year for the last 5 or 6 years, they're just so easy to wear & really cool, so they're in, as is my trusty denim jacket which I can wear for travelling in & at night if it gets too cool.  

Converse are my go-to choice for flat, comfortable, sneaker-style shoes but I bought a pair of the M&S silver sandals last year & they were like slippers to wear!  Can I just point out that they look soooo much better on than the photo depicts!  I may or may not take a pair of mid-height espadrille wedges for evening wear but I'll probably just end up wearing the M&S flats, I haven't quite made my final decision yet!

A hat & cross-body bag are essentials too as are just a few pieces of jewellery, to perk up the otherwise blandness of the black outfits!  I picked up the turquoise ring & bracelet sets yesterday & they are gorgeous.  You can't go far wrong with silver & turquoise jewellery in my humble opinion.....

Lastly, I'll pick up one of these super light-weight cabin bags in Matalan this week to match the super light-weight matching case I bought a fortnight ago!  And I am going to make it my mission to purchase this camera before we go away too!  I saw it the other day & absolutely fell in love with it (I know, I know, it's just a camera!!) but I may just have to sell my soul to be able to afford the damn thing!!

I will of course also be packing a stomach-covering tankini & sarong for when we just feel like lazing around the pool & going for a dip because it WILL be hot & it WILL be sunny!  As an after-thought, can I just point out that I know the zebra maxi dress is technically a maternity dress, but if it comes in regular sizes, I'll be straight on it!  If not, I'll probably get the maternity version anyway, I'm not fussy......!!

Next up will be a post on how to pack light, cosmetics & toiletries so watch this space!

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Silent Sunday

*sighs dreamily!*

Review ~ L'Oréal Mega Volume Miss Manga mascara

Yep, I'm just going to call it Miss Manga or MM from now on, it's too much of a mouthful otherwise!!  Anyhoo, my beloved L'Oréal False Lash Telescopic mascara was coming to an end so I thought I'd be brave & try a new one.  I get this strange urge every few months & I don't really know why I bother because nothing ever comes close to the Telescopic mascara (nope, not even the much-blogged about & loved They're Real by Benefit!) but Superdrug had an offer on where you could buy this mascara & an eyeliner for a tenner so being the bargain hunter that I am, I thought, why the hell not!!

Now, I have to admit that the first few times I used this, I hated it with a passion - sorry L'Oréal!!  I found it difficult getting used to a bristle wand again rather than the plastic ones I've grown to love & although it's supposed to be a flexible wand, there's flexible & then there's this ridiculously springy MM wand!!  I couldn't get it to grip my lashes properly as any pressure just serves to bend the wand too much & then, yup, it's all over your eyelid again!  Racoon look anyone?  Nope, thought not.......

  Also, the formula was far too wet for my liking & I resembled some sort of weird Alice Cooper tribute act with it smeared all over my eyelids & under my, no, no, not good at all.  So it was swiftly relegated to the 'dammit-it's-no-good' drawer but....... I left it for a fortnight & tried it again.  In those couple of weeks since it had been opened, the formula had thickened up & was like a totally different product all together.  I have to say, I've grown to adore this mascara & have even mastered the spring-board wand too, whoop whoop!!

It's a proper jet black mascara & yes, it does offer volume & length, it doesn't flake or smudge & removes easily with no stinging or panda eyes the following morning - exactly what I want from a mascara!!  Granted, I still sometimes have to do a wee clean-up with a cotton bud but I think the results speak for themselves!!

So my advice to anyone looking to buy this mascara would be, if at first you don't succeed, leave it a fortnight & try again, chances are, you'll love it!!

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