Sunday, 30 November 2014

Ellis Tuesday's Christmas Gift Guide: For Him


Christmas Gift Guide: For Him Ideas Blog

When it comes to buying for the men in your life, whether that be your dad, your brother, your boyfriend/partner/husband, your grandfather or even one of your male friends, it can be tricky to decide what to buy, so hopefully this particular gift guide post will give you a couple of ideas.


Jam Neutron Portable Wireless Speaker Christmas Gift Guide for him

Jam Neutron Portable Wireless Speaker* Was £39.99 Now £19.99

My star present when it comes to buying for men (or for women) who love their music, this year, is this incredible portable wireless speaker from Jam. Despite being incredibly compact this really does pack a punch in terms of volume, bass and sound quality. With up to four hours of battery life and the ease of connecting your device of choice via Bluetooth, the Jam Wireless Speaker is ideal for a whole host of music lovers. As it's splash-proof too, it really is the perfect addition to your bathroom set-up, allowing for a whole lot of singing in the shower.

Salter Disc Electronic Kitchen Scale Christmas Gift

Salter Disc Electronic Kitchen Scale* £19.99
If you happen to know a Paul Hollywood type or someone who is a keen cook or budding chef then this set of scales from Salter are a must-have. These are incredibly sleek looking and also come in a variety of fantastic colours. They look far more expensive than their 'under £20' price-tag and don't take up any additional space in the kitchen at all. They easily fit into a drawer or cupboard, making them absolutely ideal for those who aren't exactly a fan of clutter too.

Ted Baker Get Ahead Ted Set Christmas

Ted Baker Get Ahead Ted Set* £18

If you're really not sure what to buy the man in your life then it's time to take a trip to Boots to check out the great range of gift sets for men (and potentially pick up a few things for yourself too. I can't be the only one who does this. Hehe). What's great is the fact that you can mix and match your favourite gift sets in the Boots 3 for 2, making the deals even more attractive. My two favourite ranges, when it comes to men, have to be Ted Baker and Soap & Glory.
The Get Ahead Ted Set from Ted Baker really is the one gift set that you can't go wrong with this Christmas. Not only do you get two great Ted Baker body products but you also get a fantastic and utterly classic Ted Baker wallet as well. Just think how many men would appreciate this set, from teenagers to grandfathers. 

Soap & Glory DAILY DOUBLE™ Gift Set Fish Stonefish Matt Texturising Clay Fish Fishshape Texturising Cream Fish Fishfingers Shape Defining Wax

Fish Stonefish Matt Texturising Clay* £5.99 - Fish Fishshape Texturising Cream* £5 - Fish Fishfingers Shape Defining Wax* £5.99 - Soap & Glory DAILY DOUBLE™ Gift Set £8
And then there's the Soap & Glory men's range. Whilst us girls have the luxury of getting our Soap & Glory fix all year round, the men in our life have a much more limited window of opportunity for Soap & Glory goodness. Only available during the festive period, the men's range is well worth the wait. If you're a fan or know someone who might be, it's worthwhile to stock up on these limited edition products and sets sooner rather than later.
And if the man you're buying for this year spends more time and attention on their hair than you do, then the range of waxes and creams from Fish will be right up their street. These are also included in the Boots 3 for 2 (didn't I tell you that you needed to plan a trip to Boots this Christmas? Hehe.) These provide salon quality haircare for a fraction of the price.

DVDs for him Christmas Gift Guide

And last but not least, the good old DVD. Whenever I'm struggling for ideas as to what to buy the men in my life I head straight to the DVD section. You really can't go wrong with a good DVD or TV Boxset in my opinion, so here are some of my picks for DVDs that I'm sure will keep the man/men in your life entertained this Christmas.

How are you getting on with your Christmas shopping this year? And who have you been buying for so far? Did this post provide you with some shopping inspiration? 
Have you done a Christmas gift guide this year? Please leave me a link to yours if you have one or are planning one.
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Friday, 28 November 2014

This Has Been: November (And The End Of October)


November October 2014 Instagram



Attempting to beat the post-Florida blues with some of my favourite American magazines and Hersheys Kisses - M&S doing Halloween right - The Christmas aisle is now my favourite place - A Saturday morning IKEA trip - It's safe to say that our washing line didn't survive the windy weather this year - RIP Oscar De La Renta - I'm so in love with my new blog template - Make-up Of The Day - The Viktor & Rolf Bon Bon gift set that dreams are made of - Time to get prepared for winter with some brand new Yankee Candles - I finally started Twin Peaks but it's taking me a while to really get into it - A bit of impromptu baking - It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Fraser's - I was in a magazine! (click to find out more) - Can Fiendish Fancies be an all year thing? - I have a feeling I'm going to end up with a Snowdog this Christmas - A day spent in bed with and as Sleeping Beauty - IKEA's festive lighting is so stunning - An early night with Miss Lena Dunham - My favourite way to spend a Saturday night in winter; with a horror movie marathon - The Family Stone - Chocolate filled crackers!! - My new favourite TV show - Lush's WOW! Christmas gift set really is a wow! indeed - Catching up with The Carrie Diaries - A bit of a Lush Christmas haul - Who wouldn't want Gizmo underwear? - I finally managed to get my hands on the Accessorize handbag of my dreams - A Very She & Him Christmas - It's so surreal seeing Zoe's book in stores especially as I've read her blog since the very beginning - Blue Velvet perfection - Christmas shopping


Since I returned from the US midway through October and I did a This Has Been: Florida instagram post (link here) instead of a This Has Been: October post, I had a couple of photos from the end of October that I thought I would share, so I decided to add them to this post.

October and November have been pretty up and down to be honest. I've been back and forth to the doctors again and have spent more days than I would like to admit to curled up in bed (and not in the good way). This has resulted in me spending countless hours on Netflix, which isn't necessarily a bad thing really. Hehe. I also made a start to and finished(!!!) my Christmas shopping! All I need to do is finish wrapping them and that's me done. I don't think I've ever been so prepared in my life. Haha. 

What were the months of October and November like for you? Please feel free to send me your instagram links and I'll be sure to check them out. 

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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar


W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar

W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar* £19.99

Every year I fawn over the incredible array of beauty based advent calendars that are released and this year has been no different. Is it just me or have even more brands and shops hopped on the alternative advent calendar idea? Some of them are quite definitely out with my budget (I'm looking at you Liberty and Jo Malone!) but W7's offering is the ideal price to treat yourself to a beauty related advent calendar without having to seriously break the piggy bank to do so.

So let's have a little look at the W7 products that are included in the Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar;

W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar Blog Review

You get 23 mini W7 products including ten gorgeous nail polishes, a mini foundation (which I'm really rather intrigued to try out), three lipglosses, three lipsticks, three eyeshadows, three glitter pots and one full sized product; a mascara. I kind of felt like I was singing 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' there as I attempted to list all 24 of the products that are included. Try singing "and a full sized mascara for me," 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' style. Hehe.

I now can't wait for the first of December to start opening the designated doors. I will definitely be keeping you up to date with all things advent calendar related over on social media, so be sure to follow me on Twitter (link here) and Instagram (link here) if that is something that you would like to see. I might also do a recap post on all of the products that are included in this calendar at the start of next year. If that is something that you would like to see then please let me know below.

You can find the W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar on the W7 website (link here), as well as at a variety of different stores and online retailers (link to UK stockists here). I've also seen it in my local TK Maxx a couple of times now too. And if you're feeling lucky, then be sure to check out the W7 Twitter (link here) where they will be giving away an Advent Calendar every day until December 1st.

So what do you think of the W7 Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar? Will you be treating yourself to a non-traditional advent calendar this year or are you more than happy to have a chocolate a day instead?

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Sunday, 23 November 2014

Ellis Tuesday's Christmas Gift Guide: For Her


Christmas Gift Guide For Her Blog

Well here it is, the first of my Christmas gifting series, one that I've been meticulously planning for months now. And now that it's finally somewhat acceptable to mention the word Christmas without people looking at you in a funny way, it's time to get the series up and running. This is the first of five Christmas gifting blog posts that I have planned, which will be appearing here every Sunday in the run up to the big day itself.

I've tried my very best to feature a real assortment of products and gift ideas in each of the five blog posts, to cover a variety of budgets and individuals. Not only do I find these kinds of posts helpful in coming up with ideas for what to buy loved ones for Christmas but it also, more often than not, gives me more inspiration as to products that I just have to add to my own Christmas list. 

So let's get started with the Christmas Gift Guide: For Her. This should hopefully give you some inspiration when it comes the women in your life, from your mum, to your best friend, to you your grandmother and more. And I also hope that it gives the men in our life some ideas as to what some of us would quite like to find under the Christmas tree this year. 

Christmas Gift Guide For Her Nail Polish

Fuse Gelnamel Vamp Starter Kit* £35 - Fuse Gelnamel Elec-tric or Treat* £15 - Fuse Gelnamel Sonic Blue-m* £15 - Fuse Gelnamel Intens-so-fly* £15 - Stylfile VIP Nail Files* 
£4.99 - Leighton Denny High Performance Nail Colour in Inkjet £11
I bet that it comes as no surprise that I'm featuring a whole host of nail goodies. For anyone who enjoys painting their nails, these gifts would make welcome additions to a fellow nail polish-a-holic's stash of nail products.
If you are buying for someone who adores gel nail polish then the Fuse Gelnamel kit allows them to achieve the same salon quality look at home. And you can also take advantage of the Boots 3 for 2 deal to add some exciting new Fuse shades to their gel polish repertoire. If you know that they prefer traditional nail polish techniques then Leighton Denny is where it's at. I always find myself picking up a few of the winter shades every year and the quality is pretty spectacular too. And of course, any nail polish lover will be excited to unwrap the brand new VIP Stylfiles. One is emblazoned with crystals and the other is accented in faux fur.

Emjoi MICRO Pedi 11 Piece Gift Set Christmas Gift Guide For Her

Emjoi MICRO Pedi 11 Piece Gift Set* Was £49.99 Now £29.99

And to keep your nails in tip top condition for all of those lovely festive nail polishes, there is the Emjoi Micro Pedi 11 Piece Gift Set. The value for money with this gift set is pretty unreal, especially when you take into consideration that the Micro Pedi itself can be around the £20 mark. For only £9.99 more, if you happen to take advantage of the incredible deal currently on at Argos, you get ten additional extras. This would make the perfect gift for any beauty lover who likes to take care of their nails.

Christmas Gift Guide For Her Perfume Fragrance YSL DKNY Michael Kors Library of Fragrance

YSL Black Opium Gift Set* £39.99 - Library Of Fragrance Gingerbread EDT* £15 - DKNY Women Sparkling Limited Edition EDT* Was £50 Now £19.99 - Michael Kors Glam Jasmine* £33.15
For me, perfume is a real fail safe gift idea, so let's start with YSL's Black Opium, which comes in one of the best gift sets of the festive season (just look at that handbag-friendly travel spray). Despite the dark packaging this is one of the sweetest yet sophisticated scents that I've ever had the pleasure of smelling. You really need to get yourself down to your local perfume counter to give this a sniff over the festive period (as well as the rest of the fragrances that I've featured). Then there's the limited edition DKNY Sparkling scent. This really would work for a whole variety of women, of all ages, which is what I love about it. Then the Library of Fragrance's Gingerbread scent is quite honestly the most perfect Christmas fragrance that you could imagine. If you know someone with a penchant for that particular scent or someone who has been excited for Christmas since January (hehe) then this would make a fantastic gift for them. And to finish on an almighty high, there's my favourite scent of the whole year; Michael Kors' GLAM Jasmine. This is just indescribably beautiful. You can also find it in a fantastic gift set this year.

Christmas Gift Guide For Her Yankee Candles

Yankee Candle Christmas Cookie Large Jar Candle £19.99 - Yankee Candle Candy Cane Lane Small Jar Candle* £7.99 - Yankee Candle Angel's Wings* £7.99

Last Christmas I received my very first Yankee Candle, a medium jar of Christmas Eve from my grandparents and I now fully blame them for my full blown Yankee Candle addiction. Hehe. Having finished that jar I can wholeheartedly recommend the Christmas Eve scent, in addition to the three new festive scents that have made their way home with me over the past couple of weeks.
Clinton Cards, where I bought my large Christmas Cookie jar from, currently have 25% off of all Christmas Cookie sizes as that is their Yankee Candle scent of the month. So if you, or someone you'll be buying for this Christmas, are a big fan of that fragrance in particular, then get yourself down to Clintons asap! They are also doing 'Buy One Get One Half Price' across the entire Yankee Candle range, which is where I would definitely recommend picking up some of the brand new Christmas scents. Candy Cane Lane, which smells just like peppermint candy cane, is part of the Christmas Past Collection, whereas Angel's Wings, a fresh and vanilla based scent, is part of the Christmas Present Collection. Who wouldn't love a Yankee Candle this Christmas?

Elle McPherson 3 in 1 Luxury Action Foot Spa Christmas Gift Guide For Her

Elle McPherson 3 in 1 Luxury Action Foot Spa* £33.49

Now I am aware that this product is a little pricier, especially if you're a fan of buying lots of little presents for family and friends but if you're the kind of Christmas shopper who likes to pick a slightly larger, more impressive present then this might be ideal for you and your loved one.
Who doesn't love a bit of pampering? And after spending hours, if not days, dashing around the shops, your feet can certainly do with a bit of TLC. It also works particularly well for those with poor circulation as well. Complete with two interchangeable pumice stones and fantastic massage rollers, this really would make such a great gift for mum's, grandmother's, aunt's, cousin's, sister's, wives... the list really does go on.

Have you started your Christmas shopping yet? If so, what have you bought so far and for who? Did this post provide you with some shopping inspiration? 
Have you done a Christmas gift guide this year? Please leave me a link to yours if you have one or are planning one.

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Friday, 21 November 2014

What I've Been Watching In: November



So technically I watched the first four movies on the flights to and from Orlando and then saw Annabelle whilst I was there but last month's What I've Been Watching post just had to be dedicated to all things Halloween, meaning that I wouldn't have been able to include these movies in my October post. And since all of these movies have just been released in the UK, either on DVD or at the cinema, this might be even better timing for my What I've Been Watching post.

Bad Neighbours (2014)
Starring: Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne, Zac Efron, Dave Franco
As soon as I took my seat on the first flight there was one movie that I knew I really wanted to watch and that was Bad NeighboursI love a good Seth Rogen movie. I know they might not be to everyone's taste but I personally find them hilarious (apart from The Green Hornet and The Guilt Trip of course). Bad Neighbours revolves around the lives of two sets of neighbours; Rogen and Byrne's characters who have just moved to the suburbs with their baby and a fraternity who move in next door. I think because we don't really have fraternities/sororities and that kind of University experience here in the UK means that I'm always intrigued to see what goes on, on an American college campus.
I have a feeling that a lot of people will have been drawn to this movie with the promise of Zac Efron and not only Zac Efron but a shirtless Zac Efron at that but for me, Dave Franco is much more my type. Fans of The Mindy Project will also recognise Nurse Morgan Tookers (aka. Ike Barinholtz) in this movie too, which was a lovely surprise. The baby in this movie really does steal the show for me though. She is just the cutest! And the fact that Rogen and Byrne's characters are creating a calendar featuring their adorable baby instantly made me smile and when they dress her up as baby Heisenberg I couldn't stop laughing. It's a pretty decent comedy and one that I would definitely watch again. 

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

Starring: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Hugh Jackman
Now I'm going to start by saying, I'm a big fan of comic book movies and the first of the recent X-Men reboots; X-Men: First Class, was fantastic, in my opinion (link here). So I was really excited to see how Days of Future Past would compare and I have to admit, I really wasn't as impressed as I hoped that I would be. All the aspects of First Class that I adored were completely obliterated and replaced with the original X-Men aesthetic. And all I could ask was why? 
For me, there was far too much Wolverine. It felt like the tenth Wolverine movie (we must be at least nearing that many Wolverine movies by now, right?) Then there wasn't enough screen time for the characters that I had fallen in love with all over again in First Class. And one thing that annoyed me was the fact that they introduced a really interesting and intriguing character in Quicksilver, played by Evan Peters and then neglected to do anything with him bar the most impressive scene in the entire movie and this really certainly me. It was watchable as a result of some of my favourite actors (Fassbender, McAvoy and Lawrence) being in it but it definitely was a huge departure from my much loved First Class.
Oh and if you happen to watch the Screen Junkies show on Youtube (link here) then you might have seen their Honest Trailer of this movie where they compare it to Terminator 2 brilliantly. It's actually unreal how many parallels it has with T2!

Annabelle (2014)
Starring: Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, Tony Amendola, Alfre Woodard
As a very big fan of the movie The Conjuring (which I reviewed last month in my Halloween What I've Been Watching post - link here), it's hard to forget the doll who appears throughout the movie; Annabelle. When I first heard that they would be making this into a stand alone movie I was really excited but I also had a bit of a bad feeling about it too. I was worried that it would be rushed, especially when it had a release date right before Halloween of the same year but as soon as I saw it being advertised when I was in Florida last month, I knew that I would need to go and see it.
I had the real privilege of seeing it in a US movie theater, complete with reclining leather seats and to top that all off, me and my mum had the entire XD screen to ourselves. This was probably a good thing as thankfully we were the only two to hear one another screaming, jumping and nervously laughing too. Hehe. It's safe to say that we definitely weren't too disappointed by the way that Annabelle turned out at all.
Okay so it wasn't quite as good The Conjuring was but I wasn't expecting it to be, especially as The Conjuring is honestly one of the best horror movies that I've seen but it wasn't as bad as some of the other recent horror movie releases. It definitely had an Insidious feel to it, so if you're a fan of those kinds of movies (as I am) then I have a feeling that you will enjoy this, plus there was just the right amount of jumps and scares too. I did manage to predict exactly how it would end once Alfre Woodard's character started to appear more and more but apart from that Annabelle was well worth the watch.


22 Jump Street (2014)

Starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Ice Cube
Whilst I was all about sitting down, strapping in and watching Bad Neighbours on the first flight, on the flight home the one movie I knew that I just had to watch was 22 Jump Street
I really adored 21 Jump Street and even watched it on TV whilst I was in the US to make sure that I was completely prepared for the sequel. For fans of the first movie, I have a feeling that you will really enjoy the second in the Jump Street franchise. And if you haven't seen the first then I would definitely recommend it, especially if you like those kinds of movies. Even my mum was laughing uncontrollably at this movie and trust me, she is really not a fan of a whole lot of comedies.
I think the important thing to remember with this movie is the fact that it is a sequel and a pretty good one at that. I still prefer the first Jump Street venture but I have a feeling that once I've seen 22 a few more times I'll probably like it even more. Is anyone else like that? Sometimes it takes watching a movie or TV episode a couple of times to really enjoy it to it's full potential? I definitely need to pick it up on DVD.

The Other Woman (2014)
Starring: Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, Kate Upton, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
I had two hours left on my flight to Florida when I happened to be scrolling through the selection of movies on the Virgin Atlantic In-Flight Entertainment system. It was then that I spotted The Other WomanI do like Leslie Mann and Cameron Diaz so I was more than happy to give it a try. And of course, I had a feeling that Nikolaj Coster-Waldau would be rather easy on the eye too (and I was right).
The story isn't all that original and it was pretty easy to predict how it would end as well as who Cameron Diaz's character, in particular, would end up with. I also wasn't entirely convinced by Kate Upton as an actress but I did have a feeling that that would be the case. There is no denying that she is unbelievably stunning though, even if the Baywatch-esque scene felt a bit unnecessary.
It's your typical chick-flick in many ways and not the worst one that I've seen at that. It's the kind of movie that you can have on in the background while your doing other things and I don't imagine that you would miss too much or struggle to follow the plot.

True Detective (2014-)

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson, Michelle Monaghan, Michael Potts
Unlike The Other Woman, you really need to give True Detective your full concentration and attention. Not only so you can follow the narrative and hopefully come up with a few ideas as to where the case will take them next but mainly because it is completely deserving of your time.
I've slowly but surely been making my way through some of the most talked about TV shows of recent years and after watching Breaking Bad and Orange Is The New Black I knew exactly what I wanted to catch up on next. Finding out that it was being repeated on Sky Atlantic, from the very beginning, really did make my day/week back in September. I made sure to get a series link set up straight away and I'm so glad that I did. True Detective is easily one of the best TV shows that I have ever seen. McConaughey and Harrelson are pretty unbelievable in this, especially when you've grown up watching them play characters that are far flung from those of Rust Cohle and Martin Hart. You really need to see it to believe it. And how amazing is the theme song? I've had it on constant replay ever since I watched the first episode.
It did remind me quite a lot of The Red Riding Trilogywhich was one of my favourite TV series' from a couple of years back, as it does share a lot of the same tropes but I mean this in the best way possible. I now feel the need to re-watch The Red Riding Trilogy again pretty sharpishly.

What have you been watching this month? Do you have any recommendations? Have you seen any of these? If so, what did you think of them?

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Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Essie Fall 2014 Collection


Essie Fall 2014 Collection Review Swatches

Essie Fall 2014 Collection: Dress to Kilt* £7.99 each

Despite Autumn/Winter being my favourite seasons when it comes to a lot of things (fashion, festivities and staying warm and cosy), I'm not normally the biggest fan of the Autumn/Winter nail polishes on offer. I traditionally tend to wear one or two shades that I end up getting bored of pretty quickly or I end up abandoning any plans to paint my nails with a glitter polish. Not only does the glitter take forever and a day to remove but I am more often than not, completely overwhelmed by the amount that I can choose from. It really does take something special in Autumn/Winter to make me excited for the shades on offer and as soon as I saw the Essie Fall 2014 Dress to Kilt collection, I had a feeling that I'd be eating my words about not being enthusiastic about the Fall shades this year. And trust me, if you're looking for a slew of Autumn/Winter appropriate shades that most definitely do not require a top coat of any kind (just look at that shine!), then let me introduce you to the Fall 2014 Collection from Essie.

Essie Fall 2014 Collection Dress To Kilt Review Swatches

Clockwise from the top: Style Cartel (an inky, almost deep navy blue)  
Dress To Kilt (the collection's namesake and the perfect red; it's not too bright or too dark)
Partner In Crime (think dark chocolate but with a mahogany twist and a whole lot of lustre)
Fall In Line (if you're looking for the ideal Camo green shade then this is it)
The Perfect Cover Up (it had me at teal green but then there's this gorgeous greyish undertone added into the mix too) 
Take It Outside (perhaps my favourite of the collection, this is now the only taupe/neutral shade that I've been reaching for)

So what do you think? Aren't these just the most perfect Autumn/Winter shades? I'm absolutely besotted with the entire collection and just look at how shiny the formula is! One thing I would say though, don't apply just one coat of these polishes. As soon as that first coat dried I was completely disheartened. The polish was rather streaky and not what I expected from Essie at all but as soon as I applied a second coat, the polish instantly transformed into the glossy and gel-like finish that you can see before you. Dry time is pretty average but well worth the wait, especially when it comes to that second coat and I've been seriously impressed with the durability of these polishes.

You can get your hands (and nails) on the Fall 2014 Collection either at Boots, Superdrug (link here) or on the Essie website (link here), as well as many other online retailers.

So what do you think of the collection? What is your favourite shade out of the six? Are you a fan of Essie nail polishes? And if so, what is your Essie shade of choice?

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Sunday, 16 November 2014

Florida Haul: Miscellaneous



It's the last of my Florida Haul posts, which means that I've been back home for just over a month now. I'm already planning my next trip to the Sunshine State though, aiming for a 2016 departure all being well. Just in case you missed the last three posts on my fashion buys (link here), beauty buys (link here) and Sephora splurging (link here), then all you need to do is hover over the links. This post is all about the products that I picked up that didn't quite fit into any of the other haul posts.

Parks & Recreation Season 6 The Mindy Project Season 2 Palo Alto DVDs Haul

Parks & Recreation Season 6 - The Mindy Project Season 2 - Palo Alto
I knew that I wanted to pick up the first two TV boxsets, mostly because neither are available to buy in the UK and I am a huge fan of both but Palo Alto came as a bit of surprise. At $9.99, I wasn't sure that you could get it on DVD in the UK either so James Franco definitely swayed me into buying this. I saw a trailer a few months back and it looks decent enough; I have high hopes.

Not That Kind of Girl - Lena Dunham Book Haul

Not That Kind of Girl - Lena Dunham
I couldn't not buy this. I'm a big fan of Lena's as well as Girls and Tiny Furniture so this purchase was a no brainer. I'm about half way through now and so far it's been exactly what I would expect and hope for from Lena Dunham.

Color Me Girl Crush - Mel Elliott Haul

Color Me Girl Crush - Mel Elliott
This was $1.99 in Urban Outfitters and about the only thing that I could afford to purchase in that store, although saying that UO is much cheaper in the US than it is over here, which again, is slightly annoying. This might not have been an essential purchase but for that price I couldn't leave it behind (how many times have I said that throughout these Florida haul posts? Hehe).

Boo The World's Cutest Dog Haul Buddy Dog

Boo and Buddy
Look at these two. If you happened to see my instagram when I was over in the States (@ellistuesday), then you might have seen me debate whether or not I really needed a stuffed toy of Boo 'The World's Cutest Dog.' You can clearly see what decision I made there. Haha. Buddy (Boo's best friend), on the other hand, was a spur of the moment purchase. I'm definitely blaming the 40% off coupons that I had for Michael's for buying both of them. Hehe.

Disney Toy Story Peas-In-A-Pod Plush Haul Disney Store

Disney Toy Story Peas-In-A-Pod Plush
Toy Story has to be my favourite Pixar movie and Toy Story 3 has to be my favourite of the three. I'm still not sure what I think about the notion of a Toy Story 4, simply because the Toy Story 3 ending was so perfect but I guess I'll wait and see. The last time I was in the US I bought a Lots-O'-Huggin bear (which still smells of strawberries FYI) and when I saw these I knew that they had to come home with me. Some people have throw pillows on their beds, I have Peas-In-A-Pod!

Victoria's Secret PINK You Can't Drink With Us Water Bottle Haul

Victoria's Secret PINK You Can't Drink With Us Water Bottle
I'm a sucker for any kind of pop culture reference emblazoned on something, especially when that pop culture reference is one from Mean Girls. I needed a new water bottle and this one more than fits the bill. Just look how amazing it is!

TJ Maxx Notebooks Haul

Notebooks
The selection of notebooks at TJ Maxx was absolutely unreal! If you happened to follow my travels on instagram (@ellistuesday) then you might have seen a couple of the ones that caught my eye (link here) and (link here) but I finally made my mind up on these. They are almost too beautiful to use.

TJ Maxx To Do Lists Haul

To Do Lists
In the same vain/vein, the To-Do List selection at TJ Maxx was on a whole other level. If you ever happen to find yourself in a TJ Maxx store then I sincerely urge you to check out the stationary section.

Sharpies Haul

Sharpies
Can you tell that there was a sale on Sharpies whilst I was there? Hehe. 75 cents for a Sharpie is unreal!

JCPenney Home Velvet Plush Blanket Haul

JCPenney Home Velvet Plush Blanket
This purchase was completely inspired by the villa that we were staying at. My bed had a velvet throw on it which was so beautifully snug, if perhaps a little unnecessary for a bed situated in the Sunshine State (I would normally sleep with a ceiling fan on it was that hot at night). Whereas this is just the kind of item that should be essential for a winter spent in Scotland and I can confirm, this is the softest and cosiest thing ever!

Michaels Sticko Stickers Haul

Stickers
Inspired by Becca Rose, who was also the reason that I finally stepped through the doors of the incredible store Michaels, I picked up some stickers from Wal-Mart which were only a dollar each. I'm hoping to make up some quotes using these, so please let me know if that is the kind of thing that you would like to see on here.

Michael's Pink Glass Jars Haul

Michael's Pink Glass Jars
These were 60 cents in Michaels! SIXTY CENTS!! If I could have brought more home with me I would have.

Slushy Magic Haul

Slushy Magic
So, I bought a slushy maker! This was another purchase enabled by a fantastic sale at Michaels. Now that I've got home, I've read several, very mixed reviews for this product but I just had to buy it to at least give it a go. Expect a slushy update on social media very soon. Hehe.

So what do you think of the purchases I made whilst I was over in the US? What would be on your American wishlist? Have you enjoyed my Florida Haul posts? If so, which one was your favourite?

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Friday, 14 November 2014

It's Christmas Jumper Time With New Look


New Look Christmas Jumper Reindeer


As I briefly mentioned in my last post (link here), I'm definitely in a Christmas state of mind. The Christmas wrapping paper has been bought, the most comprehensive Christmas list that you could ever imagine has been written and I think that I'm about halfway through my Christmas shopping. On Wednesday I paid a visit to my local shopping centre and despite it being midday, midweek and in the middle of November it was already getting a little too busy for my liking. But I had to make sure to stop and get a photograph (despite being completely sans make-up) taken in front of the Christmas Tree come Santa's Grotto set-up, especially as I was wearing my brand new Christmas jumper from New Look (link here).

As soon as I saw this particular Christmas jumper in New Look I knew that it was the perfect one for me. Not only is it incredibly soft and cosy (you really have to get yourself down to New Look and give this a feel for yourself) but it's also pretty refined, which I adore as it means that I will be able to wear it all winter long. To see the full range of Christmas jumpers available at New Look and trust me they have quite the selection

For me, a Christmas jumper immediately gets me into the festive mood. I wear mine on those cold, frosty mornings spent dashing around the shops in the lead up to the big day, as well as when I'm wrapping presents whilst simultaneously doing my best Mariah Carey impersonation 'All I want for Christmas is you' style.

And don't forget, Friday 12th of December marks National Christmas Jumper Day where every pound you give to Save The Children will be doubled by the UK government, so why not get your Christmas jumper ready well in advance of that date. To find out more (click here).

Which Christmas jumpers have caught your eye this year? Are you a fan of the superbly tacky ones or do you prefer a more subtle and sophisticated Christmas jumper? I'd love to see what Christmas jumper you'll be wearing this festive season!

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Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Mark Hill MiracOILicious Collection


Mark Hill MiracOILicious Collection Beauty Review Shampoo Conditioner Moroccan Argan Oil 2 Minute Miracle Intensive Treatment

Mark Hill MiracOILicious Nourishing Shampoo - 2 Minute Miracle Intensive Treatment* - Moroccan Argan Oil - Nourishing Conditioner
Over the past couple of weeks I have made a significant start to my Christmas shopping, which has meant spending even more time at the shops than I normally do. I'm not complaining in the slightest though, as more and more shops have been putting up their Christmas decorations and bringing out the most amazing gift sets. They certainly hit the nail on the head when writing the song, "It's the most wonderful time of the year" in my opinion. So you can imagine just how excited I have been getting in Boots and that's where I saw a gift set (along with a few others) that immediately caught my eye; the Mark Hill MiracOILicious Treat Collection. As I picked up the gift set, it was only then that I came to the realisation that I hadn't even reviewed the one haircare range that I've been loving more than ever recently; the Mark Hill MiracOILicious range. So here is that review.

I've been using the MiracOILicious range for over six months now, on and off, and it's been a real hair saviour in the past couple of weeks in particular. If you read my Summer Sun-days post dedicated to summer haircare back in May (link here), then you might remember that I featured the 2 Minute Intensive Treatment in this post. Not only has that product kept my hair in tip top condition over the course of those months but it's made it's biggest impact, along with the rest of the range, since I returned from my holiday around five weeks ago.

When I got back from Florida my hair basically resembled candy floss and not in a high fashion or editorial way at all. I think the combination of three weeks of my hair being exposed to chlorine, blazing sunshine and heat really did it no favours and neither did the drastic shock of coming back to the Scottish rain, wind and bitter cold. That's when I instantly reached for my Mark Hill MiracOILicious products once again. 

The shampoo and conditioner leave the hair feeling incredibly soft and nourished but for me, the real stand out products from this range have to be the 2 Minute Intensive Treatment and the Argan Oil itself. As I briefly mentioned earlier, the 2 Minute Intensive Treatment quickly made it's way to the top of my haircare essentials all the way back in May and for good reason. Not only is it incredibly intensive as the name would denote but it smells absolutely amazing. The Argan Oil, as long as you avoid the roots (which you should always do with these kinds of products) doesn't leave hair feeling greasy or oily in the slightest but adds even more moisture and shine to your hair. The entire MiracOILicious range is perfect for those with any kind of damage to their hair, whether that be heat damage, sun damage or as a result of colouring your hair. Now that my full sized MiracOILicious products are sadly almost coming to an end, I have a feeling that I might need to treat myself to at least one of the Treat Collection gift sets (which are currently available in Boots), especially as it contains all four products from the range.

So what do you think of the sound of this range from Mark Hill? Have you tried any of the MiracOILicious products before? If so, what do you think of them? And what gift sets will you be buying this Christmas, either to give as gifts or to keep for yourself?

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Sunday, 9 November 2014

Florida Haul: Fashion



Now this next haul was the one which did the most damage to my already dwindling spending money but I had been saving for around eighteen months for my Florida shopping trips.

Michael Kors Mini Selma Handbags Fashion Haul

Michael Kors Mini Selma Handbags
As soon as I knew that I would be visiting Florida I had one item on my list which I instantly began saving for and that was a Michael Kors handbag and as soon as I saw the Mini Selma design, I knew it was the perfect bag for me.
When I arrived in the US I only ever intended on buying the gold version and even when I was in the Michael Kors store I had my heart and head set on one purchase, that was until the most amazing sales assistant and I got to talking and she let me know that she would be able to do a special discount for me if I spent over $250. And that was when my original idea of just purchasing one bag went totally out the window as I raced back to the selection of Mini Selma's and picked up the one other colour that had made my heart skip a beat moments earlier; the purple. I managed to save over $70 which still seems almost unbelievable to me.


Marc by Marc Jacobs Watch
Next on my US 'Treat Yo' Self' shopping wishlist was a designer watch. Every time that I've visited the US I've had my heart set on a rose gold Michael Kors watch but for some reason or other I've never actually gotten around to doing that. And even though I absolutely adore the range of rose gold Michael Kors watches, I thought I would have a little look in the Marc by Marc Jacobs of Macy's. It was there that I saw a couple of watches that I was completely smitten with, well until I saw the $200 price tag that is. I really couldn't stretch my budget to that amount so I decided to bid them a fond farewell. 
That was until I saw this little beauty in the jewellery cabinet at TJ Maxx. Instead of the original $180 price tag I paid $85! And I had to ask the sales assistant about ten times if that was actually the price. It's dainty enough for me to wear on a daily basis and just look at the stunning watch face.
This meant that I got a watch that would sell over here in the UK for £180 for around £55! Say what?!


Old Navy Leopard Print Slip Ons
I saw these on the Old Navy website before I left and when I actually tried them on in the store they were everything that I could ever have dreamed of and much more. So much so that I actually bought these two pairs and a black pair. I got varying degrees of discounts on each of them (thanks to the crazy deals and coupons that Old Navy had to offer), with one pair costing $11 (they were originally $30!)


Disney Parks Rose Gold Mickey Earrings
I couldn't leave Downtown Disney without buying a piece of Disney memorabilia and instead of buying yet another soft toy (check out next week's haul post if you want to see which ones I did buy) I decided to go with something that I could keep forever, which were also a little more appropriate for my age too. Hehe. I had a look through the jewellery room in World of Disney and wasn't entirely blown away until I saw these. You can also get them in gold, silver as well as the rose gold (as I did).


Forever 21 Jewellery
A couple of days after buying the rose gold Mickey Mouse earrings I stumbled across these gold heart earrings in Forever 21. I really adore the design of both of these pairs of earrings and the way that they add such a unique touch to a pair of hoop earrings. And the necklace was too cute and too cheap not to pick up as well.


Old Navy Sleep Is My Cardio Sleep Tee
This was a bit of a no brainer as I genuinely love any play on the Wildfox Shopping Is My Cardio sweats. It also instantly reminds me of the very episode in Sex and the City where Carrie exclaims that very sentence. Can I be Carrie Bradshaw yet?


Victoria's Secret PINK Star Skater Dress
This was on the sale rail at my local Victoria's Secret and after trying it on and it fitting like a glove, I couldn't put it back on the rail. I also couldn't believe the fact that a size small actually fit me in PINK, despite the fact that I ate my body weight in food almost every day of the holiday. Hehe. (Click here to see some of the yummy food I indulged in when I was there).


Forever 21 Heels
These were also in the sale and when I find a pair of heels that I can actually walk in I tend to snap them up pretty quickly. I also really love the look that the faux leather straps create too. If only they had them in other colours.


Nike 2014 Flex Run Trainers
I badly needed a new pair of trainers but I couldn't exactly justify spending any more than $50 for a pair, considering the fact that I would only be using them for going to fitness classes (I've still to book my first round of Pilates classes) or for going out on evening walks. Even in the Nike outlet stores a good pair were in the high $80's until I came to the conclusion that even with UK size 5 feet, I could more than fit my feet into a pair from the kids section. And that's where I found these. They were only $39.99 and they are honestly the comfiest pair of trainers that I've ever owned. With trainers this pretty I think I might actually be tempted to be a little more active (maybe).

Whilst I did definitely treat myself, I managed to get some incredible deals and savings to make purchases that were already drastically cheaper than if I'd bought them in the UK, ridiculously good value. Would anyone like to see a US shopping guide (ie. how to take advantage of deals, where to get the best savings, how to use coupons to save big in stores that you wouldn't ordinarily think of using them in and much, much more. Including how and where to get a Visitor's discount)?

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Friday, 7 November 2014

Nails Inc Nail Polish Diary: November


Nails Inc South Kensington Silver Foil Effect Nail Polish Beauty Review

Nails Inc South Kensington Silver Foil Effect Nail Polish £12

It's pretty hard to believe that after I've written this particular Nails Inc Nail Polish Diary post there will only be one more left to share with you; December's. I know I say it most months but where has this year gone? Now that it's November and the days are getting shorter and shorter and my Christmas countdown is well and truly under way, January (when I picked up the Nail Polish Diary in the John Lewis sale) feels like it was just yesterday and to think that it will soon be January 2015 is a little scary to say the least. But enough of me going on about how time is quickly slipping away from us, hehe, let's get onto the November Nails Inc polish of choice; the South Kensington Silver Foil Effect Polish.

I've been on the lookout for the perfect metallic, almost mirror-like nail polish for a number of years now and there's always something that doesn't really work when it comes to those kinds of finishes on my nails. They either dry kind of matte or it is inevitable that they end up clinging to the ridges on my thumb nails, so I was a little dubious when first trying Nails Inc's take on the metallic nail trend. 

As soon as I applied the first coat I could instantly breathe a sigh of relief. I don't know why I had doubted Nails Inc's capabilities with this foil effect polish, especially as I've been so impressed with the other ten nail polishes that I've had the pleasure of trying this year thus far, thanks to the Nail Diary. This is honestly the best metallic nail polish that I have ever tried, bar none. I mean just look at the mirrored shine that you get with this nail polish! I literally feel like I'm wearing mini mirrors on my nails, they are that amazingly shiny. And it doesn't cling to the ridges in my nails either, which is a huge bonus for this type of nail polish. I have a feeling that I'm going to be wearing this throughout the festive season and I really can't wait to try the top coats from the last two month's posts (link to the Fibre Optic top coat here) and (link to holographic top coat here) over this foil effect polish.

What do you think of the metallic/foil effect nail trend? Is it one that you're a fan of? And if so, what is your favourite metallic/foil effect polish in your collection?

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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

The Coloristiq Experience (With 1 Month Free Trial)


The Coloristiq Experience 1 Month Free Trial Beauty Review

If you're anything like me (an unabashed nail polish-a-holic), then I have a feeling that you're about to fall head over heels for this brand new revolutionary nail polish service. As a Coloristiq Ambassador, I've known for a couple of months that this exciting and unique nail polish subscription service was about to launch and now that it has, I couldn't wait to share it with you.

Each month you can choose three nail polishes from the hundreds available on the Coloristiq website (link here). You will find a wide variety of shades and polishes from OPI, Essie, China Glaze and Morgan Taylor, which you can add to your Coloristiq Wish List. Then each month these three nail polishes will be delivered to you for you to use for one month. Once the month is up all you have to do is repackage the polishes and either take them to your local Post Office or post them in your nearest postbox. And all of this, including delivery to and from Coloristiq costs £14.49 a month. 

So instead of paying full price for a nail polish which will inevitably go gloopy or become unusable, you get to wear some of the best polishes on the market without having to worry about any of that. Have you ever completely finished a bottle of nail polish? I think I've done it once, in all honesty and even then it wasn't exactly the same formulation near the end as it was at the start. I literally have hundreds of bottles of nail polish sitting in a drawer in my bedroom not being used to their full potential, which is pretty upsetting, both in terms of the amount of money that I've spent on them (a lot of which I paid over £10 for each - eek!) and the fact that they are inevitably going to end up in the nail polish graveyard (aka. the bin!)

Coloristiq Beauty Review OPI China Glaze Essie Nail Polish Subscription

The three nail polishes arrive impressively packaged. I was so intrigued when I opened the box to see the polishes in what I can only describe as nail polish socks. Hehe. They act as a protective glove (that's the best way that I could term it really, hehe) to stop the bottles getting damaged or broken in transit, which is obviously a great idea. And the fact that they are bright yellow also means that you won't have any trouble misplacing or accidentally throwing them out. As I've alluded to there, don't throw away any of the packaging (ie. the box, yellow protective wrappers, pre-paid postal label or Coloristiq sticker) as you will need it to send the polishes back.

Coloristiq Beauty Review China Glaze OPI Essie Nail Polishes

How perfect are the shades that arrived for me to try out this month? It really is a great way to treat yourself to some professional manicures at home, without having to make an appointment at your local nail salon or forking out for a full size bottle of professional nail polish. When you take into consideration the fact that OPI polishes now retail at £11.95, nearing the top of the nail polish price spectrum, as well as the fact that they can all too often lay stagnant in your nail polish collection, the Coloristiq subscription feels pretty ingenious.

Each bottle will be cleaned by the Coloristiq team once it arrives back with them and before it is dispatched to the next Coloristiq subscriber, meaning the bottles will be in perfect condition on their arrival.

Readers of Ellis Tuesday have been offered one month's free trial of the Coloristiq Experience. Once you have registered, all you need to do is email Coloristiq at info@coloristiq.com with the promo code ELLIS1 and your first month will be manually refunded. If you have any questions about this, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me either in the comments below, by email (ellistuesday@hotmail.co.uk) or on Twitter (@ellistuesday).

So what do you think of the Coloristiq idea? Is it something that appeals to you? If so, which shades will you be adding to your Coloristiq wishlist?

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