Monday, 28 January 2019

BEAUTY BOX SERIES ROUND UP - WHAT'S HOT | WHAT'S NOT



First of all can I just say a huge thanks to everyone who commented on my blog posts during the Beauty Box Series, I was so delighted to see so many of you read my posts and enjoy seeing what these beauty boxes were all about. If you missed them rude (haha jokes) I will have them all linked throughout this post. 

If you would like to see more of these let me know in the comments below. Is there a beauty box you are dying to try but don't want to commit just yet? Let me know I'd love to be the guinea pig haha, I wont stretch to luxury ones that cost £80 though just putting that out there. I was also thinking of doing food sub boxes as they seem to be popular at the moment, would that be interesting ? 

Anyway on to the actual Round Up, which box came out on top and which one was a flop ?! 


GlossyBox 


This was probably one of my favourites out all 4 and it was also the cheapest I got it on offer for £8.00 for my first box which is usually £10.00 per month + postage. I love that they come with Royal Mail now too it's such a life saver for me how dramatic I really liked the products that were included and used all of them which is rare for me, there's always one I'm a bit mehh about. I can confirm I have stayed subscribed to Glossy Box, can we get a woop woop! 




RoccaBox 


I had never heard of this box and was so intrigued to try this out, I really liked the products, I was especially excited to try the hair gummies out as I see them all over Instagram. For me thought it just wasn't that amazing for me to stay subscribed unfortunately. I wasn't overly fussed about any of the other products, there isn't anything bad about them I just wasn't feeling it ya know! So sadly this was a no from me. Sorry Roccabox 




Look Fantastic 


This was probably my absolute favourite box out of them all, I was delighted to see Dr Paw Paw in there which I've been wanting to try for ages and a loose banana setting powder which was worth about £30 was a real bonus, again I've used all of the products in this box which is why I am staying subscribed to Look Fantastic. 




Pink Parcel 


I was really excited for this one to arrive but sadly it was way overdue the date I wanted it to be which was quite disappointing. I do think it's good value for money and the amount of sanitary products you receive is more than adequate. I also liked the little beauty part of it but the only thing i've used is the dry shampoo. The eye product didn't work at all as the roller ball wouldn't move. I haven't continued my subscription with Pink Parcel as it didn't quite hit the mark for me 


I hope you found this post useful and can see a round up of my opinions on what's good and what's not so great. Let me know in the comments below if you have tried any of these boxes?


_GillianHelen_




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Tuesday, 22 January 2019

BEAUTY BOX SERIES | PINK PARCEL JANUARY REVIEW



I am absolutely gutted that this is the last of my Beauty Box Series, I would love to have done more but I just can't afford them all and really can't justify it either. To end this exciting series is Pink Parcel, this is advertised as a period box as opposed to a beauty box but you get the beauty samples in here too and I just really wanted to try this out as it sounded amazing when I was reading about it. 

I chose for my box to come on the 14th of the month but it didn't arrive until Mon 21st which I was slightly disappointed about as you are supposed to choose your date in time for your period coming, I only chose it simply for the quickest date I could get it for review purposes so if you have ordered it for that time then it's pretty much useless.

I believe Pink Parcel have been in a bit of trouble with business recently as I got an email through from the CEO of Pink Parcel apologising to employees and customers which was really quite sad to hear how they had to downsize the company and lose a lot of staff hence one of the reasons boxes have been shipped late. They seem to be getting back on their feet and look to be back into a better rhythm for next month so hopefully all works out for them.

Let's get on to the actual box....




As you can see it arrives in a grey cardboard box which is wrapped in a black packaging bag so it's discreet and no one will know what it is. Inside are 3 little individual boxes and a black canvas bag.

For You 

Oh I love this little box of goodies, I can imagine this cheering me up so much at one of the grumpiest times of my month haha. I received 2 face masks, one sheet and one peel off mask, a roll on eye gel to reduce those black circles and also promote eyelash growth, super excited to give that a go and see if it actually works, there was a morning energising face mask, a Percy & Reed dry shampoo which I love, a detox tea bag and 2 little chocolate orange squares Ate them as I typed this up and they were deeelish 

For Night 

Included in this box were 5 night time sanitary towels an absolute must 

For Later 

Included ion this box were 7 tampons and 7 day time sanitary towels 

Canvas Bag 

Included in this cute little canvas bag were 5 mini sanitary towels for the very start or end of your period and 4 compact tampons, perfect for popping into your handbag.





When I signed up for this box I got to choose which brand I would like and how heavy my flow usually is so it's tailor made to your needs which is so good. This box cost me £12.99 for one month Free p&p and also comes in 3, 6 or 12 month subscription options. I have included a link to more information here 

This is such a great idea and even as a teenager I would of loved something like this coming to me every month, it's so versatile for all ages I think. Hopefully Pink Parcel get back on track soon and delivery will arrive when you have selected it to. 

Have you tried this box or anything like it ? Let me know in the comments below


_GillianHelen_




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Sunday, 20 January 2019

TRYING OUT ASOS MAKE UP - YAY OR NAY ?!



I was having a browse through ASOS and realised they done some miniature beauty products from Too Faced and Smashbox which I've been looking to buy for a while so was in a treat yo' self kinda mood and then I came across this little set on ASOS in the sale and thought you know what I'm going to try that out... strictly for blog purposes is what I told myself. 

I didn't even know ASOS done their own make up, is it just me who didn't know that? I wonder what caught my eye? Was it the pink packaging? Definitely Yes. I am such a sucker for anything pink and cute, the marketing works wonders on people like me. This set was just £12.50, what an absolute bargain, full price was £25.00. I've tried to find the link for it but unfortunately it's out of stock. You can buy them all individually here, all products are in the sale so still getting a bargain.





Eyebrow Palette 

This come with a wax and 2 powder shades, a universal taupe shade and a deeper brown. I've only used the taupe shade and really like it, I don't use it all that often as it seems to take me ages to do my brows with powder. I usually use my Soap & Glory pencil which takes me seconds to do 

Translucent Powder

I'm not going to lie, I'm not a fan of this I used it very lightly on my skin as I was worried about a white cast on my face and my face was so oily by the end of the day. I don't ever really get oily skin, this could of been a combo of the foundation I was testing out but I still don't think it was that great. I used it for a second time with a more heavy hand and my face looked pale af! Sadly wont be using this again :( 




Contour Palette 

This is a beaut isn't it ? I love a little trio contour palette, I use my Smashbox one quite a bit but thought this could be good for every day wear as it's a lot cheaper. I've used this both fair and tanned and it definitely looks a lot better when I'm tanned as the bronzer shade is quite warm it looks to harsh on my pale skin but perfect when I have a tan. Same with the highlighter it's a rose gold shade and looks so much better when I'm tanned, I'd definitely re-purchase this 




Mascara 

The mascara is so nice, it's a big wand so one of those you need to be a little more careful with otherwise it's all over the ol' eyelids but it takes very little effort to coat my lashes with this. I have only worn it at weekends for short periods of time so need to test it on a working day to see how it performs and if I get any fall out with it. 


Primer 

The primer is a creamy lightweight texture feels very moisturising, I need to use it with various foundations to really put it to the test. I didn't notice a huge improvement wearing this but then again it didn't ruin my make up either. I'm just a bit whatever about this don't love it but don't dislike it. It's on sale for £3.00 just now, just £3.00! If you're looking for a cheap one just to try out then why not, it doesn't cost a fortune. 


Overall I do really like most of ASOS beauty products and want to try out some of their lipsticks next and see if they are worth a shout or not. If you're looking for something cheap and isn't rubbish I'd defo give them a try. Just stay clear of the translucent powder lol. 

Have you tried ASOS Make Up before? Let me know in the comments below 


_GillianHelen_


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Tuesday, 15 January 2019

BEAUTY BOX SERIES | LOOKFANTASTIC JANUARY REVIEW



Carrying on my Beauty Box Series, this is the third one in my review. If you haven't seen the others I've linked them here and here where I reviewed GlossyBox and Roccabox  Today I am reviewing LookFantastic which I've never tried before and I was probably most excited for this one if I'm honest, purely because I order off their site quite a lot for my hair products and Make Up obvs I was excited to see what would be included. 

Look Fantastic box cost £15.00 per month and free delivery on a rolling one month subscription and also have the option to choose a 3, 6 and 12 month subscription which will save you a little money. I have linked more information here This was the most expensive out of all the ones I got so I was kinda keeping my hopes up that this would be the best out them all considering the price. Again, Royal Mail deliver these boxes which I was delighted about. 





Included in my box was a free copy of Elle magazine which I thought was such a good touch and the products I received were;


1. Vitamasques Black Gold Dust Sheet Mask | Love a sheet mask !!!

2. First Aid Beauty Coconut Skin Smoothie Priming Moisturiser 

3. LookFantastic Hair Ties 

4. Dr Paw Paw Original Clear Balm | I was soooo excited to see this ! 

5. BellaPierre Banana Setting Powder | Can not wait to try this out 

6. Swell Protect & Renew Serum | I've had this before and loved it 


Included was a booklet of everything included in the box with instructions on how to use each product but sadly no costs were provided so I can't tell how much this box was actually worth which I was a bit disappointed with. I did Google the Banana setting powder and it's £25.00 so I know I've got more than my money's worth out of this box. 

What do you think of January's LookFantastic box ? 


_GillianHelen_





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Sunday, 13 January 2019

BEAUTY BOX SERIES | ROCCABOX JANUARY REVIEW



As you may or may not have seen I am doing a Beauty Box series where I review beauty boxes I have never subscribed to before and I will be doing a round up of them all at the end. Who seen my Glossybox review? Linked here if you want to give it a read. 

On the blog today though is Roccabox, this is one I have definitely seen but I don't see it spoken about as often as Glossybox or Birchbox which seem to be some of the most popular. So I thought i'd give it a go and see if it was any good or not... Roccabox is £10 per month + £3.95 p&p 70p more in p&p from Glossybox and both come Royal Mail, not sure why this is more in p&p. You can also buy this is a 3, 6 and 12 month subscription. More information Linked here

Let's just get on to what I got in January's box.....




1. Templespa calming balm | no cost given. If I'm honest this isn't something i'm likely to reach for, I don't know why, it just doesn't excite me

2. Beauty and the Bear Hair | 10 gummies | no cost but I've worked out for 60 its £19.99 so for this 10 pack its aprox £3.30 | I've used them already and they tatse amazing but I don't think I will really notice with that amount. 

3. Touch in Sol Primer | £15.00 for a full size | I love trying out new primers so this will be in my box of products to try out 

4. SportFX Stamina Mascara | £7.99 | These are designed for going to the gym so kinda like that being in the January box when the majority of people are on more of a health kick (just not me) I will definitely try this out though and see how waterproof it is. 

5. Balance Me Travel Size Eye Cream | £11.00 | I love trying out new eye creams, I still haven't found one that I would keep repurchasing so who knows how I will get on with this

6. Sport FX Duo Eyeliner | £9.99 | Again this is aimed at those who go to the gym or do sport but I mean who wears eyeliner to work out ? certainly not me. I will give this a go for working up a sweat when I'm busy shopping lol but I love that this has a black and brown shade as I mainly use brown





I'm not entirely sure how much this box costs but I'm going to say as a rough gauge £40.00. If I'm honest I'm not blown away by this box but I might give it another month to redeem themselves, we will see how I get on with the other boxes before I make a decision. 

I hope you liked this post and it gave you an idea as to what to expect from Roccabox 


_GillianHelen_



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Thursday, 10 January 2019

BEAUTY BOX SERIES | GLOSSYBOX JANUARY REVIEW




As I was brainstorming some blog post ideas the other day I was thinking to myself I haven't ordered any beauty subscription boxes in years and there are plenty that I've always wanted to try but for one reason or another just never tried them. So here I am kicking it off with a Glossybox Review... this is the first of my little Beauty Box series, there will be 3 more to come that I have never ever tried before. Glossybox however I have tried before and was shocked to realise the last one I got was back in 2013 so I just had to try this one out again for old times sake. 

Have Glossybox changed in the 6 years I've been away from it ? Not at all, but not in a bad way, they are the same beautiful boxes with the most beautiful products and I just absolutely love that surprise element and excitement of opening it up not knowing what will be inside unless you read this post of course haha. I was soo excited when the mail man was at my door with it, in fact, that is one change, Royal Mail delivered this, I am certain it was Hermes who used to deliver them which was a royal pain in the neck if you weren't home. For me, my local Royal Mail depot is within walking distance so I don't need to panic if i'm not in, I do however have to wait until the following day to pick up the anticipation!!! That was a big win for me though and things like that is what keeps me subscribed to such things. Anyone else? 


Anyway, enough rambling on, let's jump into January's GlossyBox.....





The products I received are 

1. Avant Hyaluronic Vivifying Face & Eye Cream that's a mouthful | £98.00(I checked and it is)

2. Wilkinson Sword Eyebrow Shaper - I am soo excited as I've wanted one for ages for the peach fuzz on my face to see if it actually works - Head over to Instagram to find out if it does (£3.99)                   Instagram.com/_gillianhelen 

3. Hask Repairing Deep Conditioning Treatment | Bamboo Oil £2.49 | I've used this and can confirm it's flippin' amazing 

4. Unani Smoothing Facial Scrub £8.89

5. Ciaté London Wonderwand Liner | Shade 097 | Deluxe Mini 0.8g £9.00 | This is a black gel eyeliner with a brush at one end to smoke it out, it's very creamy so I will probably use this for a smokey look as I think it could move fairly easily. 






The price for GlossyBox is £10.00 per month + £3.25 P&P, I got my January box for £8.00 as they have a discount code on (Code: GOALS). You can also choose 3, 6 and 12 month subscriptions if you wish to do so. More information here 

I've calculated that this box is worth £122.37 which is amazing considering it cost me £11.25 in total.

I am planning on doing a BeautyBox Round Up so look out for that and see if I will continue to subscribe to GlossyBox

I would love to know if you subscribe to any boxes and if so which ones?


_GillianHelen_




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Tuesday, 8 January 2019

DAILY LIFE OF ADULTING






Now and again it hits home to me that I have been adulting for 12 years, I feel like I'm thinking about it a lot more lately due to being a 1989 baby, that can only mean one thing.... 30! I moved out when I was 18 years old with my boyfriend Shane, now husband of 6 years. I remember thinking I can do what I want when I want and life would be a breeze. Oh no, along came bills, cooking, washing, cleaning if it wasn't for Shane being 3 years older than me and already lived independently I would have been clueless. Then just 7 months later we got Daisy, my pride and joy, number one baby and now she's going to be 11 in August this year. 

I have gone through various stages of 'adulting' from buying new things just to not clean to leaving things all week pretending it will all go away but reality sinks in at the weekend when I am living in filth and have 10,000 things to do in one day when all I want to do is sit in my pyjamas eating uncontrollably wondering what my life has become to now where I'd say within the last 4 years or so I have really enjoyed adult life and am actually that sad person who gets excited over buying a new cleaning cloth.


These are the kinda things when you know you have reached peak adult life

* Clean sheet Sunday Yayyy that enjoyment getting into bed on a Sunday night with fresh sheets ahhh

* Stocking up on new cleaning products not being able to contain your excitement to get Hinching 

* Putting oven gloves, kitchen utensils and coffee machines on your birthday wishlist

* Ordering endless amounts of organisation containers for your weekend of #missiondeclutter

* Driving home on a Friday night with sheer excitement to get into your Pjs and cuddle your dog

* Still awake at 10pm on a weeknight in sheer panic that you have work tomorrow

* Impatiently waiting for your new electric toothbrush to be delivered where you at ?! 

* Planning out your monthly budget on pay day to see how much you can afford on candles


I hope you enjoyed the read as a bit of fun, let me know your suggestions on reaching peak adult life in the comments below, I'd love to hear them :)


_GillianHelen_







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Sunday, 6 January 2019

PLANNING MY WORK / LIFE BALANCE




I really struggled with my work life balance last year, in fact there was no balance, it was just work work work. I would be in the office for around 06.30 and not getting home until around 18.30, 12 hour shifts a lot of the time with hardly any holidays, I took my first week off in August last year, August! I had a couple of long weekends, one in March and one June but that was it. Ridiculous. I had no one else to blame but myself for being stupid enough to do it. Getting tonsillitis twice last year (and the first time ever) still didn't get me to realise I was doing way too much. Having the break off over Christmas for 2 weeks really brought some joy back in to my life and I actually enjoyed being off relaxing rather than it being mandatory on my weekends to do nothing because I was that exhausted.

It also hit home to me how selfish I was doing those hours, I would come home knackered or just down right angry at what had unfolded that day in work and my poor husband would get the rants about it when all he wanted to do was relax after a hard days work. Our weekends were also very much uninspiring, consisted of me staying in my PJs all morning until I had the energy to walk the dog, get home, back into PJs, takeaway and a film then in bed by 10pm! I mean it doesn't sound like a hoot at all does it ? Sure it's nice to have lazy cosy weekends like that but not allll the time. 
I was living to work. I want to work to live. 

My passion for blogging also came back, I really want to build my blog and audience up as it's something I felt so passionate about before but work got in the way, it became stressful so I deleted my blog completely with almost 1k followers but I just wasn't happy. Here I am starting again from scratch, I would loooove to have your support.





How am I going to better plan or create a work / life balance?

I've bought a brand new 2019 planner which I'm completing in advance to note blog post ideas and schedule them in for which day each post will go live so I stay as organised as possible. Each week I have jotted down a motivational quote to keep me inspired and push me to keep going.
I am determined to cut my hours right back and even try to work from home once a week if I can, that means I will have a bit of a lie in once a week. I work with one of my best friends and she is going to keep me in check if I start falling back into the same routine of long hours which is great. I'm hoping by not doing as many hours will give me some energy back and make me want to do things. I want to travel a lot more, even if it's just weekend trips close by, as long as it's doing something and creating great memories. 

I'd love to know what your work/life balance is like and how do you maintain it ? Leave your comments below for me to have a read :)

_GillianHelen_




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Thursday, 3 January 2019

StylPro Brush Cleaner Review






I really enjoy cleaning and tidying, in fact I actually get excited to the point I can't sleep if I know I have some new organisation bits or cleaning products being delivered... welcome to adult life! One thing I don't get any excitement or joy out of is cleaning my make up brushes, that to me has always been a chore and will put it off until I have no make up brushes left.

That is until this little beauty has come into my life StylPro Brush Cleaner I seen some Youtubers get this for Christmas and seen numerous tweets about it so decided to purchase it whilst it was in the sale on Look Fantastic. I genuinely couldn't wait to get it as my brushes were badly needing cleaned so getting a new gadget made me actually want to clean them!

The StylPro comes with 8 different attachments to fit all of your make up brushes which then attaches to the device, also included were 2 sachets of the StylPro Cleanser which is aaaamazing I have already purchased a bottle of this as my brushes were clean sooo quickly with this. As there were only 2 sachets I could only do a small amount of my brushes. I then went on to use No7 brush cleanser which was no match to the StyPro, they took way longer to clean. See below the before and after which I used with the StylPro Cleanser 








Not only does this clean your brushes really quickly with half the effort than sitting at the sink cleaning and scrubbing them, they also dry with zero effort at all and can be used straight away. I mean whaaaat this is completely mind boggling to me and don't know why or how I hadn't heard of such a delightful gadget before now. This has genuinely taken the dread of brush cleaning away from me and I'm actually excited to use it again. I am pretty sure the novelty will eventually wear off but I am going with it for now whilst the excitement lasts.

You can pick this up from various places, just do a little google search, it comes in at £40.00 and you can also get it in a gift set along with limited edition designs. I went for the standard kit as it was half price so got it for £20 and it's the best twenty quid I have spent in a long time.

Do you own one of these? Has this inspired you to go out and get one ? Let me know in the comments below.


_GillianHelen_ 





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Tuesday, 1 January 2019

HAPPY NEW YEAR | 2019 GOALS

Happy New Year 2019



Well that's it another year over and a new one just begun.....

Happy New Year 

2018 for me has been alright, not been anything amazingly special but hasn't been dire either it's just been pretty alright which I'm not mad about. I do however have some goals for 2019 that I really want to achieve and need to have some great determination to meet my goals. It is also the year I turn 30, I am going to be 30 this year whaaaat. My goals for 2019: 


Become a Homeowner 

This is something me and my husband wanted to do this year but financially weren't ready, I also can't decide where to move to as not sure we can afford where we currently rent, well we could but it would be a small house and I would rather move 10 mins out and get something a little bigger but who knows what we will decide on. All I know is that it's going to take a lot of saving and a lot of decision making to do

Travel More 

I would love to be able to travel more in 2019 which will be difficult to do given we are saving for a house but I'd love to do a few short breaks in 2019, top of my list is Amsterdam and even travel around Scotland more, even though I'm from Scotland I don't appreciate what is close by to me so would love to explore it more and maybe do the odd travel post here on Gillian Helen

Lose Weight 

This is such a cliche but I do really need to lose a bit of weight, I have put on quite a bit throughout 2018 but need to do it for my health more than anything. I have an under active thyroid so can put on weight really easily thanks thyroid I want to make sure I am my healthiest I can be and that involves losing a little weight, I've never been this size ever (currently size 12/14 and was always a size 6/8) I couldn't understand why the weight was going on, I mean yes my diet isn't the best but I don't eat that much at all, just rubbish at the wrong times at night. Long story short throughout having various other symptoms I went to the Dr and they diagnosed me over a year ago and I've never been back for medication as I am a classic bury your head in the sand and it will all go away.... trust me, it doesn't! 

Focus On My Blog 

I had my other blog for 3 years with around 1k followers and completely fell out of love with it, shut it all down took a long time away from it and have come back with my new blog Gillian Helen. I have an extremely busy job so don't get the time I would like to focus on my blog and all the social media aspects which come with it but I'm determined to have a better work / life balance and make time for the things that make me happy like building up my blog again and sharing the things I am loving with everyone 


I'd love to know what your goals are for 2019, leave them in the comments below or link your blog post so I can have a read.


_GillianHelen_

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