Thursday, 21 February 2019

L'oreal Hydra Genius Moisturiser Review

I've tried a few new beauty products over the last month or so including the Garnier Micellar Gel Cleansing Wash and the Fresh-Mix Tissue Masks, but one that has blown everything else out of the water is the L'oreal Hydra Genius Moisturiser. I had been wanting to try this for absolutely ages so I finally treated myself and it has changed my life when it comes to skincare.
flatlay - bottle of L'oreal Hydra Genius moisturiser laid in the centre with its packaging. Props scattered around it including flowers, blusher, a london trinket dish, essie nail polish
I've never really been one to use a moisturiser, I tend to be pretty lazy when it comes to a skincare routine but my skin has just looked so dull recently and I felt I needed to add some new products in. I still have a pretty basic routine that I follow but this is always the last product and I genuinely look forward to using it each day. 

What is it?

The Hydra Genius moisturiser has been inspired by Asian skincare which seems to really have grown in popularity over the last few years. This is still pretty new as far as I'm aware and it's known as 'The Liquid Care'. It's a moisturiser that instantly refreshes your skin with its water-like texture and instantly locks in moisture leaving you with a healthy-looking glow. The aloe water continues to release hydration for upto 72 hours after use too, giving skin continuous hydration and there are three options available in the range - Dry & Sensitive Skin, Normal to Combination Skin and Normal Skin.

What do I think?

First of all I really like that there are 3 options available meaning no matter what your skin type, there is hopefully a bottle for everyone. The one I went for after much deliberation was the Dry & Sensitive Skin bottle. I have known certain products to be a bit too harsh in the past and I wanted something that was going to be as gentle as possible, yet still make a difference. I've been using this each evening after removing my makeup, though it can be used in the morning also. Just one pump of the Hydra Genius evenly covers my face and neck, a little bit really does go such a long way so I think it's likely the bottle is going to last me a while. I massage into my skin in circular motions which allows for better absorption and I find it soaks in within seconds. The reason I never really used to use moisturisers before this was because any I had tried always left that sticky feeling afterwards, I hate when you can feel the product sitting there on your skin but none of that happens with this. The lightweight serum absorbs into the skin so quickly and it always leaves my skin feeling incredibly soft. I just always feel so refreshed after using this and I do think after regularly using this for over a month now it's made a difference to the brightness of my skin. It just doesn't look quite as dull as I felt it did before and each evening I always notice there's a bit of a glow which is a nice change! I just absolutely love this product. I had a feeling it was going to work well with my skin but it's exceeded all expectations. It's even an incredibly pretty bottle too which is an added bonus. This tends to be £9.99 in both Superdrug and Boots which I actually don't think is too bad at all, to say how long the bottle is expected to last, but I actually got mine from Amazon! It was just over £6 and it's exactly the same as any other so that's a little tip for when it comes to buying new products, it's always worth shopping around.

'The Liquid Care: Fresh as water, hydrating as cream'

Bottle of L'oreal Hydra Genius Moisturiser stood up in the centre. Pink fluffy pillow to the back right hand side and a stack of pink books at the back left hand side with flowers on top. Rose petals scattered around the bottle with the box packaging laid next to it
I'd love to know if you've tried the L'oreal Hydra Genius Moisturiser too? Let me know if you have any other skincare recommendations too!

*Affiliate links used in this post

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Wednesday, 20 February 2019

My Top 10 Hamilton Songs After Seeing The Show

In Summer 2018, when I was fully addicted to all things Hamilton, I shared my top 10 favourite songs from the soundtrack. Now I've been lucky enough to see the show (you can find out what I thought here) my opinion on some of the songs I considered favourites has changed and some I'd not really liked at all sounded completely different live. So, I thought I'd do a revised list of my top 10 songs. I'd love to know if you've seen the show, if any of your favourites changed too! I know this post probably won't be for everyone, and it's totally fine if you don't carry on reading, but theatre is my favourite thing to write about so I really couldn't wait to share this.
Hamilton seat ticket held up from dress circle, view of the stage in the background
1. The Room Where It Happens - This was only second on my previous list but this and Wait For It have swapped since seeing the show. Both are absolutely amazing on the soundtrack anyway but this was just something else live. Sifiso Mazibuko who was playing Aaron Burr on the day went stole the show for me and this song was a real moment. I even cried because I was just thinking 'OMG this is my favourite, this is happening, it's so much better than I could have imagined'. I know, I'm a mess. I think my face would have been such a picture during this.

2. Wait For It - It was very difficult to move this to second place as it's been a song I've adored since the very first listen but The Room Where It Happens just had the edge. This was everything I had hoped it would be though. Another song by Aaron Burr, who is one of my favourite people in the show #teamburr. It's just so powerful and something I'm sure a lot of people can relate to in a world where there is so much competition and it can always feel like you're lagging behind compared to everyone else.

3. One Last Time - This was number 6 in my previous post but it jumped straight up after seeing it live. Dom Hartley-Harris as George Washington was absolutely brilliant, so fierce in the role when he needed to be but then songs like this come around and he just made you want to cry. He fully deserved all of the applause afterwards, it didn't seem like it was going to stop. This is a song that gets me every time I listen to it now. Also if you haven't already heard the latest Hamildrop which is a remix of this, it's incredibly special - it features Barack Obama!
4. Right Hand Man - This wasn't actually on my previous list at all. It was never a favourite of mine before but seeing it in the show with the whole ensemble, I just felt it was a real moment and by the end of the song, I just thought, where did that come from? It was never one I expected to love so much but it shows just how well Dom plays the role of Washington.

5. The World Was Wide Enough - One of the final songs and one of the biggest moments in the show. Hearing the song whilst seeing Burr and Hamilton duel, resulting in Alexander losing his life, was EMOSH! The part where Alexander know he's dying and he tells Eliza to take her time - it was on a whole new level compared to the soundtrack.

6. Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story - The final song of the show, and I was an absolute mess. After Phillips death, I didn't really stop and then obviously the final duel comes along too and then this, so I just had to let it out. It's a really beautiful moment where the whole cast come together to celebrate Eliza and what she went onto do after Alex died. It just rounds the show up perfectly and it was even better live than I could have ever predicted.

7. Dear Theodosia - This is number 7 like on the previous list so one of the only songs to not have moved around. As I said in the last post it's one of the more chilled out songs which is very much needed after the show being full on for so long! Your brain has to go into overdrive to keep up so this is a really nice moment. Sifiso as Burr and Ash Hunter as Hamilton just sang this beautifully.

8. Yorktown -The was actually number 3 before so it's dropped a little, but that's not because it wasn't as good as I was expecting, some others just blew me away. It really is a stand out moment in the show - the choreography, the whole ensemble getting involved and the immigrants line with the reaction it deserves, it's definitely special to see.

9. Satisfied - This song is one of my favourites and the staging of it is so clever. I loved the use of the revolve stage and in the opening to the song, they quite literally rewind back to helpless which was incredible to see. I had no idea how that part would work but it's mesmorising and I'd go back just to see this song again. I think one of the massive benefits you get from sitting in the circles rather than the stalls for Hamilton is having the view of the whole stage and seeing elements like that in all their glory.

10. Cabinet Battles - Both of the cabinet battles were even better in 'real life', and just so funny. The cast have clearly put their own spin on the roles so there were so many quirks and little things added in that you wouldn't pick up on just from the soundtrack. The cabinet battles really do show off the casts talent and it was nice to see so many of the ensemble involved too!

I already wanted to see this show again but writing this has brought back so many memories. It was only two months ago but it feels like forever! It's such an exciting show so I really couldn't recommend it enough. It's like nothing else on the West End at the moment.

Are you a Hamilton fan? Let me know if you've seen the show too!

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Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Current Netflix Top Picks #7

Time for some more of my current Netflix picks! I've been enjoying a real mix recently, from classic films to hilarious comedies and even documentaries, some of which I can't get over!
collage - Netflix logo on the top. Several show posters at the bottom - White Gold, Sex Education, Grace and Frankie, Fyre Festival, Abducted In Plain Sight

White Gold

I actually first watched White Gold when it was on BBC2 in 2017 but I re-watched it recently as the second series has just been filmed, and it's just such a funny show. Set in the 80's, Ed Westwick, James Buckley and Joe Thomas play the three charismatic salesmen at a double glazing showroom in Essex, who will do anything to get a sale. I was already a fan of Ed Westwick, who is known for playing Chuck Bass in Gossip Girl, but he is just brilliant in this. It's such a funny show and a great one to put in the evening, I can't wait for the second series to come out.

Sex Education

I think pretty much everyone has been watching and talking about this show, but it completely deserves all of the recognition it's getting at the moment. It's about a socially awkward high school student Otis who has absolutely no experience in the love department but can surprisingly give good advice about it (due to living with his sex therapist mum Jean, played by Gillian Anderson). He and classmate Maeve decide to set up an underground sex therapy clinic, and each episode is just hilarious. I love all of the characters, Eric is literally one of the best people in the world. We ended up watching this all so quickly so now I'm already excited for series 2!

Grace and Frankie

Each episode of this show is fantastic! I first heard about this a few years ago but it's just not really been on my radar until recently. After watching Gavin & Stacey, Friends and Miranda more times than I'd like to admit, I was in the mood for a new comedy and I thought I'd finally give Grace and Frankie a chance. I had five seasons to catch up on so I've been thoroughly enjoying watching a few episodes each evening. If you've not watched or even heard of this before, it's about two former rivals Grace and Frankie whose worlds come crashing down when they find out their husbands have fallen in love with each other and want to get married. It sounds so silly but it's made such a fab show. The two ladies realise they've now got to help one another, and put their differences aside to get through. It's just so funny. Jane Fonda is an icon.

Abducted In Plain Sight

Okay this documentary is UNBELIEVABLE. All the way through I was just thinking, what the hell am I watching. After seeing so many tweets about this, I had to watch it and I'm still not over it. This tells the true life story of 12 year old Jan Broberg who was abducted from her small church-going community by a trusted neighbour and family friend in 1974. Not only was it sad to know of everything that Jan went through, but I was left feeling pretty disgusted at her parents. You'll know why if you've seen it too, I'm not quite why sure they agreed to the documentary to be honest because they didn't come across well at all and in my personal opinion, they completely failed that child (I also think the mum may still have a thing for B). I'd absolutely love to know if you've seen this too and what you thought. It's just crazy. 

Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened

Another documentary that blew my mind, how could something so crazy, actually happen?! If you've somehow not heard of the Fyre disaster, it was made out to be this new extravagant, luxury music festival back in 2017, all of the big influencer's like Kendall Jenner were talking about it. People were expecting lodges on the beach, some of the biggest bands in the world, something special but unfortunately it all went horribly wrong. What they actually got was cheese sandwiches, tents and pretty much every music act cancelling, it was a mess. The documentary shows just crazy it got and how much the people behind it really knew. It's mind-boggling how they thought it could go ahead when they were well aware they had no chance of pulling off what they had promised. It's a really interesting watch so well worth a try if you like a good documentary.

What have you been watching on Netflix recently? Have you been loving any of these too?

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Monday, 18 February 2019

Johnny Be Good by Paige Toon Book Review

I mentioned in my latest book haul that I'd treated myself to another of my favourite authors books. Paige Toon has been a go to for me when I'm in need of a soppy romance read, ever since Five Years From Now last year, so I'm currently trying to work my way through all of her books, and the latest was Johnny Be Good.
Johnny Be Good by Paige Toon in the centre. Pink fluffy pillow in the background on the left side. Stack of pink books at the book on the right side. A star trinket dish also in the photo
'Celebrity PA to wild boy of rock Johnny Jefferson, Meg's glam new life in sun-drenched LA is a whirlwind of showbiz parties and backstage passes. Cool, calm Christian, in town to write his famous friend's biography, helps keep Meg's feet firmly on the ground. But with Johnny's piercing green eyes and a body Brad Pitt would kill for, how long will it be before she's swept right off them again?'

My review

I feel like I run out of things to say with each book I read of Paige's as they all end up impressing me just as much as the last! So I'm sorry if sometimes these book reviews come across as a bit repetitive, I want to keep up with posting about each one I read but I suppose there's only so many different ways you can say how much you've enjoyed something. Anyway, let's get onto Johnny Be Good. I know from just the synopsis above it probably comes across as quite cheesy, but it's certainly not like that all the way through, and I kind of like books like that. Like all the books I've read from Paige before, it ends up being a really difficult story about falling in love with someone you probably shouldn't have.

Like with One Perfect Summer which I reviewed not too long ago, I instantly liked all of the characters. As soon as Meg and Johnny are introduced, you know where it's going to go and though I knew there would be various dramas throughout, I was already hoping it was going to end how I pictured. As you might imagine it doesn't take them long to fall for one another, but with Johnny's career as it is, he's not quite willing to give anything up just yet and understandably Meg doesn't know where she stands. I always say this but Paige writes in a way that makes you feel everything the characters do, so I always find myself questioning what I would do too. Though you know Johnny might not be perfect for Meg, you can't help but hope they find a way one day. That being said, I had my ups and down with Johnny as a character. After initially liking him, I did find his 'bad boy' ways with drinks and drugs became a bit too much as the book went on and I found Meg put up with more than most would, but maybe that reflects real life? I suppose that's how it is for some people and it's not necessarily something that can just be over and done with in a day.

We eventually get introduced to Christian, Johnny's best friend and this made me re-think everything! The complete opposite to Johnny but in a way, just as much of a match for her. This is when Meg has to figure out who she really wants to be with, but as we find out in the sequel Baby Be Mine, the decision is kind of taken out of her hands. Talking about the sequel, I actually really enjoyed reading this knowing there was more to come. No matter what happened at the end, or who she chose, I knew the story wasn't quite over so I ended up reading the sequel the day after I finished this and I ended up getting through that just as quickly.

I find Paige's books such an easy read which is part of the reason I get through them so fast I think. Each chapter just flows into the next and doesn't require much thinking so they're always very hard to put down. Though in the middle of this it did slow down a little and there was quite a lot of things that did seem to happen over and over again with no character really learning anything, towards the end it really picked up and I was soon thinking I need to finish this, I need to know what happens next. I've finished the sequel now which I enjoyed just as much as Johnny Be Good. I think it had the perfect ending for all of the characters involved, so I don't personally think the third follow up Johnny's Girl was necessary. Now I just need to pick which Paige Toon book to read next!

Have you read any of Paige Toon's books?


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