Wednesday, 30 December 2015

My Top 10 Beauty Products of 2015

Is it the end of another year again already? To be honest, a lot has changed for me since January and I've been very busy so at the same time 2015 feels like the end has been long awaited. Whilst I'm not ready just yet to let go of 2015, I'm also excited to start a new year and see what life will bring to me. I'm hoping it will bring me some new straighteners, actually.

Nevertheless, I have decided to bring my top 10 beauty products of 2015! Some things have been long time favourites, others are newbies and some have saved me from self-hatred.

Without further ado and in no particular order, our 1st beauty product is .....

Oxg : Anti-breakage Keratin Oil Range (1) (2) (3) £6.99-7.35

We are starting of the list with a product I've never mentioned on my blog before because it is a new favourite! And let me tell you, Oxg may be a new brand for me to try but it is on this list for a reason.

I have had trouble with my hair since my exams finished in June, earlier this year because of all the stress they gave me. Seeing my hair as thin as it was and clogged plug holes blocked with weak, dark blonde strands of hair made me even more stressed. I tried a lot of different hair care products with one eye on my purse and finally found these God-sent wonders.

This is the second time I have bought these products and within a few days my hair felt stronger and was far from falling out. Next thing for my hair is for it to get thicker again.

Skin79 : Superplus Beblish Balm

I thought I better put this friend in my favourites because I may well be saying goodbye to it. I cannot find anywhere online that sells this anymore other than Amazon (and I don't trust the sellers on there to be selling the real thing). If you know where you can buy this then please let me know!

This year, Superplus BB Cream has never not been on my face, apart from when I'm sleeping. I have linked my review underneath the picture if you want to read more about my friendship with this super loyal beauty product. In short, it evens your skin tone, has my ideal consistency and is kind to skin.

Maybelline : Baby Lips Electro Pink Shock - £2.99

We all go into the shop planning to buy one particular thing then leave with again without even touching what we went in to buy. That's the story on how I bought this. I loved the Electro 'Oh Orange' but mine was running out, so I rushed straight to the make-up section as soon as I got the chance to go shopping and saw 'Pink Shock' and bought it. I didn't even glance at 'Oh Orange'.

If you know me then you would have only ever seen me wear this since about April as well as see me apply this to re-moisturise my lips after my lunch. Thank you Baby Lips, you never fail me.

Banila co. : Clean it Zero - £15.00

THIS PRODUCT IS A LIFE SAVER! Well, maybe I'm exaggerating a tad but I genuinely feel lost without this product in my life at this moment. It is a cleansing balm and you can read my review on the link under the picture.

My heart sometimes sinks when it comes to my make-up removing routine. The wiping of the face, the annoying scratching on my eyelid with a make-up wipe to get rid of my eyeliner, then the cleansing and the washing of the face UGH. It is the worst part of my day sometimes. This holy grail would take all my make-up off and cleanse at the same time. That's it. Done.

Quick Fix Facials : Exfoliating Scrub Mask Blackheads and Blocked Pores - £4.99

This is another product that saved me in one of my darkest times. It let my pores breathe a sigh of release once every few days - and still does.

I rarely get spots any more (lucky me, I know) but I do get clogged pores that I can only see when I inspect every millimetre of my face for 15 minutes in front of a mirror. Then I can see them when I see a reflection of myself in a shop window 10 feet away from me. Not good. Something had to be done. And this is what saved me. I can see inside every pore on my face now. Almost....

Simple : Kind to Skin Foaming Cleanser - £4.49

This cleanser is simpley the best. *wink wink* I have mentioned before how this is my everyday cleanser and it's great. I must have bought this 4 times now since I first started using it. Though I said what a drain it is to remove my make-up and then cleanse, I know that this is going to clean all the make-up out of the little crooks and crannies on my face. Because you do know that a make-up wipe doesn't remove all of the gunk on your face, right?

The Body Shop : Japanese Cherry Blossom Fragrance Mist - £8.50

This fragrance isn't one of my all time favourites but it is one that I use often and it great for an everyday scent (more in my the post that is in the link above). Not only is it a very pretty and not too fancy, this is not your widely popular fragrance that your Dad bought you for Christmas that every female in your village has, oh no.

I would recommend buying a fragrance from The Body Shop, maybe even this one, if you want a casual everyday scent that not everyone has smelt on everyone else already.

Soap & Glory : The Scrub of Your Life - £7.00

Don't we all hate that dry patch in that really awkward place and moisturising whenever we can remember just doesn't help it? Well my awkward dry patches have gone and even my dry and cracked heels on my feet have started benefiting thanks to The Scrub of Your Life!

I don't know if this is meant for feet but it has certainly helped them to start healing. Plus it has a wonderful scent of Soap & Glory's 'Original Pink' fragrance, which is fruity, flowery and a teeny bit musky. Perfect for that love-yourself feeling in the shower.

Well that's the end of the show folks! Let's wish that the new year brings many more new beauty products that I will fall in love with, a pair of new straighteners and happiness. Happy new year!
- Zin

Friday, 18 December 2015

Egg Free Apple & Chocolate Cookies Recipe

Chirstmas is coming! In less than two weeks the days of fighting shoppers for the last gift will be over. As will waking up to another chocolate on the advent calendar (I don't care that I'm 18, mine is Star Wars themed!!) and all the preparation for five relatives to stay for a few days will be over too. I'm not going to lie - the lead up to Christmas is my favourite pat of the season which is why I get carried away in the atmosphere and forget to actually buy presents....

So I like to make people cookies!

And what's better is that people throw their diets out the window at Christmas BUT with these cookies you could try and pull them off as 'healthy'. They are egg free and use apple instead. This creation came about because my tree has given us 100+ apples and they have to be used up somehow.

The best thing about the cookies being egg free is that you can give them to someone you don't know very well, as long as you know they will like cookies. This is because they are friendly for vegetarians and anyone who is allergic to egg (I happen to have 2 friends who are both allergic).

You simply cannot go wrong with these especially because the recipe is super simple to follow, you can easily double/half the recipe to make the right amount, they are incredible scrumptious AND you don't miss out because you get to lick the bowl because there is no egg!!!!

The Recipe:

For 6 cookies
Butter - 50g
Brown Sugar - 25g
Granulated Sugar - 50g (Or 75g instead of the 25g of brown sugar)
Apple - 1
Water - 1 tbsp
Bicarbonate of Soda - 1/4 tsp
Vanilla Extract - 1 tsp
Cinnamon - 1 tsp
Mixed Spice - 1sp (to make the cookies even more Christmassy but it can be missed out)
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Flour - 125g
Chocolate chips - 100g

The Method:

1. Heat oven to 180°C (fan oven). Peel the apple then chop it into roughly 1cm cubes, without the core of course. Place in a bowl with the water then put in the microwave for 2 minutes 30 seconds.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar using a spoon until it is lighter and fluffier.

3. Add the apple, vanilla extract, cinnamon, mixed spice, bicarbonate of soda and salt and mix together until it is all well combined.

4. Pour in the flour and fold it into the mixture until it is just combined. If you are doubling this recipe, it might be a good idea to add it a bit at a time, mix it, then add a bit more.

5. Add your chocolate chips, fold them in until they are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.

6. I like to use 2 tablespoons to form a squashed ball shape before putting my cookies on a parchment-lined baking tray. Alternatively, you can oil/butter some foil and use teaspoons for smaller cookies, an ice cream scoop or your own hands to roll the batter into evenly sized balls.

7. Bake lager cookies for 15-22 minutes, the earlier you bring them out, the chewier they'll be and the longer you leave them in, the firmer/crunchier they'll be. Smaller cookies will only need 10 minutes to be chewy.

8. A good tip is to use the back of a tablespoon or glass to flatten the cookies 2 or 3 minutes before you take them out of the oven - otherwise you'll have scone-looking cookies, which is fine if that's what you want but you would have probably found this recipe because you want cookies.

9. Though it is tempting - LEAVE THE COOKIES TO COOL! Firstly, leave them on the hot baking tray for a few minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack. You could always eat them when they are still warm but I think their best texture is when they have cooled.

Enjoy and have a very merry Christmas!!
- Zin