Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Burberry Beauty Basics

Image of Burberry Beauty Range
While it's not always necessary to spend a fortune on beauty products, it's good to splash out and treat yourself from time to time. I'm a firm believer in spending that little bit more if it means you're investing in a better quality product. I'd been eyeing up the Burberry beauty range for a rather long time and decided that it was essential that I added a couple of staple products to my collection.
Burberry is not synonymous with the word beauty; we're much more likely to expect classic check scarves and beautifully tailored trench coats from the quintessentially British brand. If you're anything like me though, you won't be able to afford even a lapel of a Burberry coat but the more 'affordable' beauty range definitely does not disappoint if you're on the hunt for high end makeup.
This was my first experience of the beauty range - I opted to try the Burberry Kisses Lipstick and the Bold Lash Mascara - I can safely say that I've never been so impressed with a brand and the way in which they are so intent on delivering a luxurious customer experience. I was sold from the moment I opened the package and unveiled the beautiful, expensive outer packaging, even the receipt was neatly folded in a golden, embossed Burberry envelope. It really created an air of luxury and the attention to the finer details most definitely won me over.
Burberry Kisses Lipstick in Garnet no. 81 (£25)
I've fallen in love with this lipstick and I have a feeling it'll remain a firm favourite in my makeup collection for the foreseeable future. As usual, I went for a deep berry colour so it's the perfect shade for Autumn and Winter (or all year round if you're me). The formula is a bit of a dream, it's buildable to create several different looks from sheer to heavily pigmented and is so comfortable and hydrating on the lips. I did have to top up a couple of times throughout the day, I think we've all been spoilt by the longevity of liquid lipsticks and it's so difficult not to compare. In terms of a standard lipstick though, I was impressed with how long lasting it was.There is also something particularly satisfying when the innovative magnetic lid snaps shut - you can rest assured that your Burberry lipstick will not be damaged at the bottom of your handbag.
Burberry Bold Lash Mascara in Ebony no. 01 (£24)
I was pleasantly surprised by the Bold Lash Mascara; I have a real problem finding mascara's that work with my lashes as they're a bit all over the place and have a few gaps in places. The tapered wand worked really well for me - it coated my lashes evenly and gave them a lovely, natural curl. It even managed to individually separate my lashes to make them look a lot fuller and helped to conceal the aforementioned gap problem. The creamy, hydrating formula is highly pigmented and definitely gives a dark, bold look without being too over the top and dramatic. There wasn't a spider lash or clump in sight which is a huge plus point for me and it was comfortable to wear all day. It's the perfect mascara for daily wear - volumising and weightless without being too intense.    
Let me know in the comments if you've tried any of the Burberry beauty range or if there's anything you have your eye on!


Tuesday, 15 November 2016

skinChemists Caviar Skincare Range

Image of skinChemists Caviar Skincare Range
When it comes to skincare, my routine is somewhat sporadic. I'll go through periods of sticking to my routine religiously and then I can go for months just cleansing my face and nothing else. It's lazy really because you only get one face and it deserves some tender loving care so recently I've been giving it just that...

skinChemists is a UK based brand specialising in innovative, scientific skincare solutions. All products are 100% organic and cruelty free and I was kindly given the opportunity to test out a couple of products from their brand new Wild Caviar range:

Advanced Caviar Night Moisturiser* (£84.00)

The Advanced Caviar Night Moisturiser includes a combination of Caviar extract to repair the skin, Protease to breakdown dead skin cells and Shea Butter with Vitamin A and E to hydrate and nourish. After using this for around 8 weeks, I can safely say that I absolutely adore this product. It's a cream-gel type formula that feels light and cooling when applied to the skin and absorbs with ease. My oily/dry skin is prone to breakouts and I find it difficult to find moisturisers that don't cause irritation, however, this moisturiser leaves my skin firmer, more radiant and blemish free. I apply a small, even amount to my face each night and allow the product to work it's magic while I sleep so I wake up with the most beautifully hydrated skin the following morning.

Advanced Caviar Eye Serum* (£90.00)

The Advanced Caviar Eye Serum is an equally luxurious product - the Caviar extract contains Omega 3 and 6 and the Seaweed extract has hydrating qualities. The eye serum is a clear gel formula and you only need to apply the tiniest amount as it really goes far. I haven't noticed a dramatic difference around my eye area so far, it's definitely been a gradual process. I'm a little bit impatient/sceptical about eye serums as I'm so conscious about the deep lines I have under my eyes but I can see that the fine lines around my eyes are beginning to look brighter and firmer. This product is great for anyone like me who has sensitive eyes as it's so gentle and cooling; I love using this first thing in the morning as it definitely makes me look more alert and awake when I'm feeling the complete opposite.

I can't deny that these little beauties come with a rather hefty price tag but if you're looking to make a skincare investment or simply treat yourself, I'd highly recommend adding them to your collection.

skinChemists have kindly given me a discount code for my lovely readers, so you can shop the range here and use CAVBLOG1 at the checkout  to receive 70% off until 30th December.


Saturday, 12 November 2016

The Male Bloggers You Need to Know About #1

2016 has witnessed a sharp rise in male bloggers and personally, I couldn't be happier about it. Blogging is so heavily dominated by females but it's so important that there is a balance in creative spaces. Here's a few handsome fellas you need to know about within the blogosphere:

Brighton based blogger Charlie is the owner of Modish Male, a fashion, lifestyle and theatre review blog. I was immediately drawn in by Charlie's writing style; a combination of openness, sarcasm and a little bit of wit - it certainly ensures his posts are an interesting read. I love the variety of topics covered on Modish Male, there's a little bit of something for everyone and if you're a gin loving theatre enthusiast I can guarantee you will feel the same. I expect even greater things to come from Charlie in the very near future.

I've been a fan of Ben's blog Twenty First Century Gent for a pretty long time now;  it transports me into a world of luxury and I admire his timeless, impeccable style. You'll find crisp, clean photography and a sleek, magazine style blog where Ben has collaborated with several brands from ASOS to Ted Baker. For any males out there who feel they need a few tips on how to up their style game, Twenty First Century Gent will be sure to point you in the right direction. My favourite posts are his travel adventures with his beautiful wife, Katie - it most definitely inspires and encourages my Wanderlust. Definitely one to watch in the blogging community right now.

Marc Andrew is (surprisingly) written by Marc, an Avionics Technician by day and blogger by night. You'll be hard pushed to find a topic that Marc doesn't write about and that's one of the most attractive aspects of his blog. I also thoroughly enjoy his humorous, sarcastic writing style that often has me laughing out loud. He's always looking ultra suave in his style posts and he'll be sure to point out some high street bargains for you all. Tech lovers will also be in their element reading Marc Andrew and non-tech people (like me) will benefit greatly from the education!

The Yorkshire Gentleman, created by the lovely Tom, began just five months ago - a relatively new blog covering male grooming, fashion, food and lifestyle. Tom posts the most mouth-watering food reviews that will be beneficial to anyone looking for fine dining in Leeds and the surrounding areas. I particularly enjoy his fashion posts displaying his on trend, relaxed yet smart style; a natural in front of the camera! I began following Tom on Twitter when he had around 200 followers and it's been incredible to see such rapid growth and how popular his blog has become in such a short space of time.

Be sure to check all of these guys out, I promise you won't be disappointed...

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

5 Reasons to Visit Abu Dhabi

Two years ago I made it my mission to explore more of the world. I'm quite the home bird really - I didn't step foot on a plane until I was 14 and I jumped straight into a career after University so had to forgo my elaborate plans to book a one way ticket around the world. Instead, I plan my holidays around my busy work schedule and as some of you may know, I've recently returned from a luxury trip to Abu Dhabi. I was absolutely blown away by this beautiful place and these things are a must do if you're planning a trip:

1. Saadiyat Beach Club
The above image of paradise is pretty self explanatory but the Saadiyat Beach Club was by far my favourite experience. The equivalent of £40 pays for all day entry with use of the pool, beach, towels, Jacuzzi, plunge pool, gym and most importantly complimentary water (it's a must at 40 degrees!). The views were absolutely beautiful and I spent most of the day just wallowing in the pool. They don't allow too many people in to avoid overcrowding which creates such a relaxed, exclusive atmosphere and the staff ensure that you are treated like royalty.

2. Yas Island
Image of Yas Island Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi has plenty to offer in the way of white, sandy beaches and crystal clear sea. I'm used to the brown sand and brown sea of Skegness so these breath-taking beaches were a whole different world. Any Formula One fans will probably be familiar with Yas Marina and Yas Island beach is situated not too far from there - it's tucked away in the corner of the Island so it feels pretty undiscovered. Although we didn't have time to visit, Yas Island is also home to Ferrari World and Yas Waterworld if you're looking for some adrenalin fuelled fun too.

3. Emirates Palace
Image of Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi
If you want to pretend you can afford £3, 000 per night for a hotel, then you may want to take a trip to Emirates Palace. It was one of the film locations for Fast and Furious 7 so I was hoping I'd bump into Vin Diesel at some point (didn't happen though). All jokes aside, this place is like a blogger's dream - gold and marble galore. We took a slow walk around inside to marvel at the beautiful interiors and strolled around the grounds to watch the fountains. You can also book Afternoon Tea here where all of the cakes are made with gold leaf (it's really that posh) it's expensive but it looked amazing if you fancy a little treat.

4. Trip to Dubai
Image of Trip to Dubai
Ok, technically this one is cheating a little bit because it's not in Abu Dhabi but I just had to include it. We took the opportunity to jump in a taxi and head to Dubai for the day while in the UAE - it only takes slightly over an hour to get there so definitely worth a visit. I was in my element in Dubai Mall - I've never been anywhere like it and I was completely overwhelmed. I have no idea how I managed to retain some self control and resisted the urge to spend every penny I had. I also managed to snap some stunning pictures of the Burj Khalifa and if you wish, for approx. £100 you can go all the way to the top for a 360 view of Dubai.

5. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
Image of Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Abu Dhabi
There are so many cultural aspects to enjoy in Abu Dhabi but the Grand Mosque was a real highlight for me. I'd recommend going at night to get the full effect with the lights but either way this place is incredible. Obviously it's essential that you cover up so you are given traditional robes (abaya) and a headscarf (shayla) and in some areas you will be asked to remove your shoes. Dress code really is something to bear in mind before you go because incorrect attire could mean you're not permitted entry. The architecture and intricate interiors were beyond stunning and it was just so peaceful - it's so important to me to experience at least a little of a country's culture when I'm on holiday if I possibly can.
I'd highly recommend visiting Abu Dhabi if you're looking for a relaxing, luxury holiday - it's so much better than I was expecting it to be. It's pretty expensive when you get there but it's definitely worth it!

Monday, 7 November 2016

Francesca Jayne: Blog Rebrand & New Direction

I've opened Blogger on about seven different occasions in an attempt to write this post and I can't really work out why I'm struggling. I'm a little bit scared to come back I think, I'm sure we've all been here at some point and I feel like I've forgotten how to blog - it's so easy to get yourself stuck in a rut with blogging yet so difficult to get yourself back into the swing of things. The longer you leave it, the worse it gets.

A blog refresh has been a long time coming for me. Everything about this space has remained the same since the day it started in 2015 from the writing style, the topics and the blog layout but I needed a change. If I'm honest with myself, I've never really taken the whole blogging thing very seriously but moving forward, I want to try and put much more time and effort into something that I truly love.

As I'm sure you can see, Phil over at Pipdig has done an incredible job with my blog design and I could not be more grateful to him for helping me out when my technical knowledge failed me. I'm so thankful that I now have a layout that is so much easier to navigate and is also phone friendly! I'm aware that I'm by no means close to the glossy magazine style blog that is so popular these days but, for now, that's not really me. It's slick, sophisticated and simple and I couldn't be more pleased with it.

I'd also accidentally pushed myself into the niche of blogging about beauty and felt so uninspired that I'd limited myself to one topic. I was beginning to tire of consistently writing beauty posts because there's only so much you can write about lipstick and eyeshadow. Don't get me wrong, my blog will still remain predominantly beauty based but I need the option to explore different avenues within travel and lifestyle. I have other opinions and passions that extend far beyond the realms of beauty blogging and I want to share them with you all. I want to use my platform to push a few boundaries and perhaps tackle some of those hush hush topics that we all try to avoid. These changes aren't going to be anything major but I just needed to have a choice because that's what creativity is all about, y'know?

So, Fran's Beauty Blog is now simply Francesca Jayne and I'm broadening my horizons to include beauty, travel and lifestyle so hopefully you'll all enjoy this new direction and I'd appreciate any feedback in the comments below!

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