Mother's Day treats with Baker Days*

26.2.15








Baker Days is a company that provides personalised cakes for any occasion you could imagine, so when they asked me if I'd like to review some I jumped at the chance. With Mothers Day coming up they have some adorable designs that can be tailored to make it even more special for your loved one. 

I was lucky enough to receive their 'Letterbox Cake' which is the most adorable little cake that (unsurprisingly) fits through your letter box. The design I chose was the 'Mother's Day Birdies' - I just thought it was too cute! The cake arrives in a gorgeous little vintage tin with holes to allow the cake to breathe. My cake flavour was vanilla and you could smell it the minute you opened the box - so yummy! After popping the cake out my flatmate and I treated ourselves to a slice with a cup of tea. Due to it being so miniature there's only one layer of sponge, but you still get jam below the icing, and cream on the bottom - something I was glad about as I hate cake that's too dry! The cake itself was gorgeous. The vanilla flavour was there but it was quite subtle and thankfully not overpowering, and the sponge was surprisingly fresh considering it had been in the post! My only (teensy) issue was with the icing - I'm just not a big fan of fondant icing as I don't like the consistency. But that's personal preference and for the record, my flatmate absolutely loved it. 

I think the Letterbox Cake is a brilliant idea if, like me, you live away from home and want to surprise your Mumma with a little treat in the post. And the fact that you can personalise it makes it that little bit more special. Check them, and the amazing range of cakes they do, out here. And they even do cupcakes if that's more your cup of tea! Aisling. xo

*PR sample sent for review. All views are my own. 

Zoeva: Rose Golden Luxury Set.

16.2.15





If you'd asked me a few years ago to rank my must-have beauty products and tools, brushes would have been pretty low on the list. I just didn't really see the fuss - the only reason I liked them was because they kept my hands clean. I didn't feel they made that much of a difference to my actual makeup.. That was until I was introduced to my (now old faithful) Real Techniques brushes and my life was changed for the better. But now I'm ready to branch out into the brush world and I finally did with the stunning Zoeva Rose Gold Brush Set. 

This beautiful set includes 8 brushes which cover all your needs from contouring to that pesky winged liner:

FACE
106 - Powder Brush
110 - Face Shape Brush
102 - Silk Finish Brush
127 - Luxe Sheer Cheek Brush
142 - Concealer Buffer Brush

EYES
227 - Soft Definer Brush
231 - Petit Crease Brush
317 - Winged Liner Brush

I am beyond impressed with the quality of these brushes, they rival my beloved Real Techniques and they feel so luxurious in your hand (as well as to look at!). The brushes contain densely packed, natural and synthetic hairs that work beautifully with cream and powder products. My personal favourites are the 102 Silk Finish brush, the 227 Soft Definer brush (an amazing dupe for MAC's 217!) and the 231 Petit Crease brush, which gives the most amazing defined crease I've had in ages! Although the set is pricey at €58 in Europe and around £56 in the UK, it works out at only £7 a brush, and who can say no to that?!

These brushes have quickly knocked my old favourites out of my everyday routine and I'm already looking at expanding my Zoeva collection! Have you ever tried Zoeva products? Aisling. xo

Let's Go... Ride a Bike?

12.2.15


















Liverpool's 'citybike' system has been in place since 2014, and since moving back I've been desperate to rent them and go for a fun day out. My flat mate Lorna and I had a rare day off together recently so we made the most of it and decided to go on a little bike ride! The citybike stations are located all over Liverpool city centre and there's a station just at the end of our street, super handy. After registering online you simply pop in your code at the station, choose your bike and it's yours for as long as you want it. I have to admit it's been a long time since I was on a bike and I was actually terrified going on the main roads. But thankfully I had Lorna there to guide the way. 

After making our way through Princes Park just by our flat we ventured towards Otterspool and Liverpool's Festival Gardens where unsurprisingly I took a swift tumble upon entry... The Gardens are a regenerated piece of land that has been transformed into one of the most beautiful areas I've seen in the city. With Chinese pagodas, an oriental garden and some gorgeous water features there is so much to see. What really impressed me was the biodiversity area, specifically for birds, small animals and plants. I can't wait to go back when spring comes to see all the plants come to life. 

The Gardens are perfectly situated beside the promenade, so once we'd finished our picnic we simply hopped back on our bikes. We had a lovely cycle along the Mersey back to the Albert Dock where we had a yummy hot chocolate to warm our freezing hands. 

I am so glad I finally took the bikes out for a day, and for only £3! If you're around Liverpool or just visiting for a day I can't recommend them enough, such a quick and easy way to get around town and I can fast see them becoming my transport to work! Aisling. xo


Paper Towns.

5.2.15


When it comes to books I'm a sucker for anything in the young adult category (even at 23!). And after the tear-jerker that was The Fault in our Stars I've had an obsession with everything John Green, constantly searching for that emotional roller-coaster once more. 

As ever, when I heard Paper Towns was being made into a movie I nipped out to read it before it was released. The story follows our protagonist Quentin (Q) who, at the start of the book has a crazy, once in a life time overnight adventure with the interesting and quirky Margo. Q is in awe of Margo and can't wait to see her the next day.. that is until she doesn't show up at school. Fast forward a week: Margo still isn't back. Q takes it upon himself (and forces some friends) to piece together clues he's felt Margo has left for him to find her whereabouts and bring her home. The problem is.. does Margo actually want to be found?

I absolutely adored this book. It wasn't exactly what I thought it would be when I picked it up but I was captivated by the story. Margo is such a vital character in it but in actual fact she's missing for majority of the book, and I loved journeying with Q as he tried to work out this mysterious girl. For the parts that we do see of her I loved her personality, she has some incredible quotes that really hit home. Her relationship with Q (what there was of it) wasn't the norm for a young adult book but I found that quite refreshing. Q is also a delight to read, and his 2 best friends as supporting characters provided some real laughs. The writing style was perfect and the chapters weren't too long (a pet peeve of mine). There's an amazing 'count down' style end to the book that makes you feel like you're really experiencing the rush with Q and the gang. 

I am so impressed with this book and it's getting 5/5 from me. I have to admit after reading 'Looking for Alaska' and 'An Abundance of Katherines' I thought John Green was a bit of a one trick pony - I didn't enjoy either of them! But Paper Towns has knocked that on the head and I now can't wait to see the film (starring Cara Delevigne as Margo no less!) and read my next John Green on the waiting list!

Have you read Paper Towns or any other John Green novels? Aisling. xo

Naked Illuminated: Luminous.

2.2.15



When it comes to makeup, I am obsessed with all things matte. Matte skin, eyes, lips you name it - I'm on it.  But I cannot deny my love of a good highlighter. My NARS Multiple in Copacabana was always my go to, but I've been lusting after a few pressed powder highlighters recently. So Christmas rolled around and with it came some lovely Debenhams vouchers and Naked Illuminated by Urban Decay just happened to land in my basket.

I opted for the lightest shade - Luminous, a smooth, silky powder containing a microfine shimmer that gives an effortless glow in just one application. Or, if you prefer some glitz you can build it up for a gorgeous sparkle that is sure to get you noticed. I personally love using a light dusting of this product as it gives a gorgeous highlight and subtle sparkle just when the light hits it. The highlighter is lightweight and so won't clog you up or be obvious on your face, unlike some metallic-esque looking highlighter's we've all seen. 

I've always been obsessed with Urban Decay's Naked range and this amazinnggg highlighter has not disappointed! What's your favourite product from the range? Aisling. xo