Summer Empties 2014 – Body

October 15, 2014


Since I’ve been away from blogging for what seems like almost all of Summer, I’ve had a whole host of empties collecting dust in my craft room waiting to be photographed and reviewed, so instead of your typical May, June, July empty post, I’ll be posting the products I’ve used up over this summer over the next few weeks as we move into those horrible dark evenings and frosty mornings.

  1. Molton Brown Ylang Ylang Shower Gel & Body Lotion Impressions: I picked these up in one of my earlier Birchbox’s, I was pretty excited to discover that a few month’s after receiving the Shower Gel and I also had the matching Body Lotion. I’ve only recently used these in a bid to try and use up some of my vast and frankly quite worrying collection.  My overall impression was that the smell was absolutely gorgeous, although I seemed to need a lot of the Shower Gel to feel clean, even though I was using my trusty shower puff. The lotion went on better but was a little thin and “drippy”, meaning I ended up dropping some on the carpet instead of on my body. Despite that my body was left with a beautiful light fragrance all day which I was pretty happy about
    Cost: £18 for 300ml of the Body Wash £25 for 300ml of the Body Lotion £42 for 300ml of both the Body Wash & Body Lotion
    Where can I buy this: Molton Brown Website
    Repurchase: Probably not – I mean it smelt nice – but so does almost everything at The Body Shop. For such an expensive brand I wasn’t -that- blown away. I think this is more a of a status buy – you know – something you have on display in your bathroom to make you look more upperclass.

  3. Avon Planet Spa Fantastically Firming Body Polisher Impressions: I wasn’t expecting much as I’ve never been a massive fan of Avon’s shower range, but I was pretty blown away by this. It smelt gorgeous and was really exfoliating, unlike some of their products I’ve tried before which hasn’t really had that “sand paper” effect I so desire. The fragrance didn’t really last as I always use body wash after exfoliating anyway, but I felt lovely and clean!
    Cost: I picked this up at a discounted rate in my demo book, but it was available for less than £3
    Where can I buy this: Unfortunately it’s no longer on sale for the next few campagins, but keep checking the the Avon online shop or your local representitive for details of it’s return.
    Repurchase: Maybe – there are other exfoliating scrubs I have on my “to try” and “rebuy” lists before this one, but if I see it around at a fair price again I’ll definitely be picking some more up.

  5. The Body Shop Strawberry Body Polish Impressions: This is still from my Christmas stash (which is still going may I add) and I have used this before. It’s full of seeds and grains which is a nice touch but it’s not rough enough for me. Alas it smells nice, especially when layered with the other products in the range and it didn’t leave me skin too dry which it has done previously.
    Cost: £5.00
    Where can I buy this: The Body Shop UK
    Repurchase: Probably not, unless I receive this for Christmas (which I won’t complain about) I’m probably not going to be buying it myself.

  7. Rituals Zensation Organic Rice Millk & Cherry Blosson Foaming Shower Gel Impressions: This has been absolutely amazing! It’s kind of like a shaving foam so this little can went a very long way. The great thing about it dispensing this way is you can control how much product you want, it’s really foamy and doesn’t drip everywhere and is small enough to just leave in your hand bag. (Great if you are having a few unexpected nights away and needs to freshen up in an unfamilar shower!) I actually took this away with me to Scotland and ended up using it as a hand wash as well as shower gel. The scent is also gorgeous and stuck with me throughout most of the day.
    Cost: £8.50
    Where can I buy this: Rituals UK Website
    Repurchase: I’ll definitely be looking out for this come Summer time next year and stocking up.

  9. The Body Shop Strawberry Shower Gel Impressions: As with the body polish, I’ve used this before. It’s pretty pleasant to use and similar to their the rest of their Body Wash range. The scent is a light but not overly chemically or synthetic Strawberry which makes layering these products very nice indeed.These big bottles seem to last me a fair while too, especially if I’m using a “shower-puff”.
    Cost: £2
    Where to buy: The Body Shop UK
    Repurchase: As with the body polish, probably not but I wont be disapointed if it turns up under my tree this year.

  11. The Body Shop Olive Oil Shower Gel Impressions: This was actually my second bottle of this. I’d bought it to try as my skin is quite sensitive and can become very dry and Olive based products is supposed to help. Having said that I didn’t notice much different, although it didn’t dry my skin out. I wasn’t too keen on the scent though.
    Cost: From £2
    Where to buy: Currently unavailable via the website, but check out the rest of the Olive range at The Body Shop UK
    Repurchase: Probably not. I tried it, it was Okay but not that great so not something I’ll be buying again.

  13. Gilchrist & Soames Shower Gel Impressions: I actually reviewed this not so long ago and was incredibly disappointed with it. Hotel tat comes to mind – you know the stuff you are left you find in your room when you go to a cheap European hotel? You can read my full review here.
    Cost: From £11 (How do people spend this much money on this?)
    Where can I buy this: The Gilchrist & Soames UK site
    Repurchase: Definitely not. I’ll wait until the next time I end up in a3 star hotel in Holland to get my fill of cheap “hand wash” shower gel thankyou very much.

  15. Noble Isle Bath & Body Wash Impressions: Hmm again, this struck me as the sort of thing you’d find in a hotel room but it was at least much nicer than Gilchrist & Soames. I managed to get a few washes out of it, it lathered well and it smelt quite nice. I can’t really say any more on it so it couldn’t have had the “wow” factor.
    Cost: £20
    Where can I buy this: Noble Isle website
    Repurchase: No. Although after taking a nosy at their website, I am very much in love with some of their packaging for Christmas Gifts.


Thus concludes my first ever empties post! Finally! Keep your eyes peeled for my next installments of Summer empties. Have you tried any of the products above? If so I’d love to know your thoughts below.

Totally hellbent for remembering the glory of summer by reviewing all of the empties

– Pants


Free L’Occitane Hand Cream with Marie Claire

October 14, 2014


It’s delicious freebie time and this month you can pick up a free L’Occitane Hand Cream with any copy of Marie Claire. If you’ve not tried any of their hand creams, now is probably the time. They are absolutely gorgeous and leave hands feeling wonderfully soft without the sticky residue of most creams.

This month there will be four to choose from, classic Shea Butter and the limited edition scents: Vanilla Bouquet, Delightful Rose and Zesty Lime each worth an amazing £8. I’ve so far managed to find Vanilla and Rose and after testing our the Zesty Lime, I’m definitely going to be on the hunt for it!

Make sure you keep an eye out for them in your local supermarkets, corner shops and newsagents!

Have you picked any of these up yet? If so, let us know what you think in the comments below.

Totally hellbent for free L’Occitane any day of the week


Beauty Boxes

Birchbox September 2014 Review

September 18, 2014

How am I still catching up on so many blogs? Where does time go? How is it Birchbox time again! Alas, this month’s box has arrive promptly and has a “Happy Days” theme. – a box to celebrate capturing nostalgic moments and making new ones. Before I start with the contents, it’s important to note that I had help from a very special individual. Not only was I given help to open this month’s box, but I also had help taking my photographs;


Meet Pickle – the new addition to the Hellbent For Lipstick “red camp” household – Gem has been making the epic long journey of approximately 30 seconds from her house to mine to lavish attention upon him and he has been helping me to blog and work – distracting me from everything important that I need to do.


With his incredibly useful *raises eyebrow* intervening, I finally managed to get my box open and see what it had inside!


Agave – Healing Oil Treatment – 4ml sample – £16 for full size

I’m building quite a collection of hair oils, which I don’t mind so much since they are really great for my hair. This oil promises to restore and transform unmanageable frizzy hair and is a little different to the current “Argan Oil” trend. Although the sample is small, I’ve found that I don’t need to use a lot of oil for my hair despite it’s length. It smells quite fruity – which I imagine would be a little sickly if too much was applied but it’s quite pleasant in small doses.


Benefit – It’s Potent! Eye Cream – 30g sample – £25.50 for full size

Gem and I make no secret about our love for Benefit so our excitement about receiving anything Benefit related in our boxes is often difficult to contain. The sample is gorgeous and although I already own this eye cream, it’s very welcome in my skincare collection. After a few sleepless nights thanks to Pickle’s arrival, this eye cream is pretty wonderful at perking me up!


Korres – Citrus Body Milk – sample – £9.50 for full size

At first glance I thought this was a cheaply packaged runny body milk but I was very wrong. When held the packaging is more luxurious and sturdy, housing a beautifully thick body milk that rubs into the skin, leaving a gorgeous “herby” scent. There is no overwhelming Citrus smell and it soaks into the skin very quickly, leaving it feel lovely and soft with no greasy residue. I’ll definitely be looking out for more things from this brand.


ModelCo – Lip Lacquer in “Morocco” – small sample – £15 for full size

I own a few “lip lacquer’s” or should I say “lip gloss'” from ModelCo. One striking thing about them is the scent. They all smell like sweeties which I adore. As for the colour of this gloss, it’s a sort of opaque nude. Definitely wearable, my only qualm with lip gloss’ is the stickiness they leave behind so I’d usually much prefer to go for a lipstick over a gloss. Alas, this will pop nicely in my handbag for a bit of colour when I don’t want to don any lipstick.


Beauty Blender & Blender Cleanser – Full Size – £26

What a surprise this was for Gem and I! After both of us missed out on the beauty blender a few boxes ago, we thought we’d never receive them but this month we were very blessed and over the moon! We’ve been wanting to try these out for absolutely ages. A lovely egg shaped sponge to help us apply our base with ease. Perfect for gigs where we have to lather on the foundation to cope with the heavy stage lights. With it came some blender cleanser – or rather a disc of “soap” for cleaning it, which is also very handy.


Urban Fruit – Perfect Pineapple – 35g snack pack – £13.20 for 6

I am a fan of Pineapple, as well as cramming as many of my daily fruit and veg “allowance” into my body, so this was a welcome extra. Pure pineapple coated in a little rice flour and at 100 calories per bag – it’s definitely a healthier alternative to a bag of crisps. I like discovering products like this, but £13.20 for 6 packets is a little overboard for me when there are so many great healthy treats available.


Birchbox – Happy Days Photo Clip – Lifestyle Extra

This is so adorable! It’s made it’s home on my desk in the office – currently holding the vaccination details for Pickle until I find a fitting picture to go here – by fitting picture – it will probably be a ridiculous shot of Gem and I drunk at a festival this summer! This fits wonderfully with the theme of the box and really tops the contents off nicely.

I have to say that Birchbox have really stepped up their game in recent months and each box keeps getting better. Their themes are fun and filled with lovable and usable brands and it’s definitely my favorite beauty box out of Glossybox and Love Me Beauty. So if you want to try Birchbox out, you can do so for just £10 plus p&p each month via their website – or you can opt for a 3 or 6 month subscription if you’re already hooked!

Totally hellbent for a box full of amazing treats and a tiny puppy to help me dispose of the packaging


Vegan, Vegetarian

The Vegan Kind #TVK11 September Box

September 17, 2014


First things first – how are we on the 11th Vegan Kind Box already! Have I really been subscribed to a box for almost an entire year and not been disappointed once? I can assure you that this month is definitely no exception and as amazing as the previous boxes. Not to mention my great one of Vegan Kind Beauty Box which you can read about here.

So anyway, for those that don’t know and haven’t heard me singing the praises of this box, The Vegan Kind is a monthly subscription box which features 5-7 Vegan items and usually one beauty/lifestyle product. Despite my love for this box I can assure you I am not affiliated with them in any way! Anyway, I took my treats outside to to frolic with them in the sunshine. I know most professional photographers will frown, but I’m absolutely loving the beautiful shadows that natural sunlight has been casting on my photos recently and have really enjoyed my zero editing challenge!

Alas here is #TVK11


Ombar Organic Coco Mylk Bar – 35g – (RRP £1.99)

Yes! First out the box is some delicious Vegan chocolate. I’m not sure I need to say much more on this. After savouring my Vega bar a few boxes back for a good few weeks, I doubt this one is going to last as long. None the less I’ll enjoy every morsel of it and then worry about 208 calories I’ve digested later.

For some guilt free chocolate scoffing, brush Green & Blacks aside and check out Ombar.


Hoots Snacks Pickled Onion Flavour – 85g (RRP £0.60)

Ah, salty Vegan snacks how I savour you. Unfortunately these days I try to limit my intake of salty and sugary snacks, but these are a welcome treat. A little on the high calorie side of things so they will be eaten on a gym day but I’m loving the flavour and the low price! Now to just convince all of the shops that Vegan is the way forward.

You can visit their website here.


Bear Paws Raspberry & Blueberry – 20g – (RRP £2.95)

I am a huge fan of Bear snacks. So much so that this packet has now been demolished. The great thing about these though is they count towards 1 of your 5 a day and contain no nasty ingredients. I usually buy the little rolls they do but from not on I’ll be swapping to these bite size little nibbles.

You can see their site here or look out for their range in your local Holland & Barrett or supermarket.


Taste Spice Magic BBQ Dust – 40g – (RRP £2.95)

Another favorite thing of mine about this box is the variety of flavors I get introduced to. I love receiving the herbs and spices that are usually incorporated into the recipe card and this magical BBQ dust is perfect. It’s also sizable enough to last for a little while and I’ll definitely be repurchasing once I’ve run out.

Check out the taste spice website here.


Skin Likes Natural Deodorant – 70ml – (RRP £4.95)

I’m really enjoying this deodorant – 100% natural with a beautiful jasmine-esque fragrance it’s definitely different to the more chemically smelling under arm “smell be gones” that I tend to go for. The only thing that puts me off here though is the price – at nearly £5 this is quite steep and since I get through so much deodorant anyway, it’s bound to be a bit of a sting in my already stung bank balance. You can get a triple pack for just under £10 on their site, but even still this is quite a lot for someone who is used to spending only £1 on theirs. I guess the proof is in the pudding though and I’ll have to see whether this does me justice after 2 hours in the gym.

You can purchase these as well as Skin Likes for men via their website here.


Creative Nature Blissful Berry Snack Bar – 38g – (RRP £1.20)

This is actually a little different from the usual bars we get in this box, it’s more of a flapjack bar. (Unfortunately it’s riddled with sultanas) But I do like the concept of this. I’m going to give this a go and if all else fails, then Brains will happily finish it off for me. Another great post gym snack though and if you’re into super foods then check out their website for lots of other delightful treats.

Creative Nature Website


Nothing But Fruit Pineapple & Grape Snack – 11g – (RRP 1.20)

Last month I received a savory bag of noms from Nothing But – admittedly still in my “treat” cupboard and by treat cupboard, I mean full of raw, vegan protein goodies for a post gym fix. Since this was their new product launch it’s quite nice to try something else from their range. I love pineapple and grape so I’m sure I will enjoy these a lot!

Nothing But Website


TVK Recipe Card

Each month we receive a recipe card, usually featuring an ingredient received in our box. These fit nicely in the ring binder that you used to receive on the third month of your subscription, but by the looks of the welcome letter this has now changed to month 6. Alas this month’s recipe was from The Vegan Kind themselves and featured a fajita mix with home made sides. I love fajitas and I’ll be testing this out over the next few weeks!

As I usually mention, each month 10p from every box is donated to an animal charity chosen by the subscribers. This month’ it’s Serbia’s forgotten paws – a fantastic charity campaigning for better conditions for the stray dogs of Serbia.

Another great box from The Vegan Kind, if you’d like to get your paws on one then head over to their website here and subscribe for just £10 a month plus p & p. Next year should mark their first birthday so I’m really intrigued as to whether they will be doing anything special! Stay tuned for next month’s.

Totally hellbent for nommy Vegan treats always!


Lifestyle, Vegetarian

Hello Fresh Review

September 16, 2014

Many beauty boxes ago I received a £25 off voucher for Hello Fresh – a box that delivers you all the ingredients you need to make deliciously tasty meals. It’s been sat in the craft room for a long time until I came across it a week or so ago and decided to try it out. The boxes are usually £36 for three meals for two people. With my voucher, this meant I managed to get this for just £11, a price I felt was worth trying since that’s what I would generally spend if I popped to Tesco’s to “pick something up for tea”.

Intrigued as to what Hello fresh was all about, I ordered my first box on the Thursday that was scheduled to arrive the following Tuesday. There are a variety of boxes to suit everyone (although sadly no exclusive Vegan box as yet) and you can choose whether your box is for 2, 4 or 6 people.

I went for the Veggie Box for 2 people which included three meals. Delivery was prompt, early morning on the Tuesday. So prompt and early in fact that I was still in my dressing gown when I hazily opened the door with my pre-morning-tea grimace to a massive box that only just squeezed through the door.

Inside was all of the ingredients needed to make the three recipes provided – on individual recipe cards with a break down of specific ingredients, how much was needed of each and detailed instructions of how to prepare each meal.



Day One was Sri Lankan Sweet Potato and Green Bean Curry.

The ingredients were fairly standard which is nice because it means I can make this again. My only gripe is that there was one 175g packet of Basmatic Rice – two recipes called for 150g of Rice but did not state whether this was cooked or uncooked so I presumed they had forgotten to send me another packet. None the less for this recipe I used Bulgar Wheat instead – just in case. It worked just as well and used up some of my dried cupboard food.


This probably my favorite out of the three. It was creamy and spicy but packed full of flavours. I think the addition of the lime and the coconut and cashews in this really helped to add some crunch and zing and is something I wouldn’t have thought about putting in a coconut based curry previously. The recipe stated it should take between 30-40 minutes, which is probably right. If you don’t mind spending some time cutting and preparing your ingredients then the rest is mostly stirring and checking. Nutritional values were also provided with each recipe – for this one per serving  they were as follows;

  • 713 calories
  • 22g fat
  • 92g carbohydrates
  • 16g protein

This may seem a lot per serving, but actually is far better than a lot of other meals due to the fresh produce and being packed with delicious vegetables. The other great thing about this meal is that there was enough left over for the day after, so 10 minutes of cooking some more bulgar wheat and heating it through and we’d actually managed to produce 4 meals instead of 2.


Day two greeted us with Sicilian Caponata with Pine Nuts and Garlic Ciabatta.

This one was probably the easiest to cook – manageable in just under 30 minutes. Again a lot relies on you chopping the ingredients first, something which I really don’t mind as I tend to prefer my food fresh rather than from a pan.


This meal was my least favorite. It was nice and I did eat the whole bowl but it just didn’t tickle my fancy all that much. Probably something I will try to re-invent with a few different ingredient. There was enough for two people this time so we didn’t have any left over for the next day. Something I was pretty glad about.

Nutritional Values were;

  • 395 caloreis
  • 1g fat
  • 58g carbohydrates
  • 12g protein

The lowest in calories and fat, but bumped up a little by the Ciabatta. I was a little skeptical at having only received one Ciabatta roll to begin with, but actually cut in half and then in two was plenty for us both.


Day three and our final meal was Escondido Crusted Mexican Rice with Jalapenos and Chipotle.

This meal involved a little more prep – it was advised to cook the rice the night before and leave on a baking tray in the fridge until ready to use which I did. It wasn’t too much hassle really as I simply put the rice on to cook whilst I was cooking the day before.


When I said that the Sri-Lanken curry was my favourite – I may have lied. This was most definitely on par with it and I would probably enjoy eating both of them simultaneously for the rest of my days. What really helped is the freshness of the ingredients and again the addition of things that I wouldn’t usually thing of – the wedge of lime to sprinkle over at the end and a dash of corriander to garnish. I absolutely love corriander and often forget how well it goes with Mexican style dishes so since feasting on this I’ve been adding fresh corriander to all my recipes similar to this since!

Nutritional Values were:

  • 458 calories
  • 2g fat
  • 83g carbohydrates
  • 16g protein

Again another delicious meal, but with a fairly low calorie count and packed with yummy veg. This also did us for two meals, although I did cook the entire packet of rice so this probably has something to do with it.


As well as all of the ingredients for the above meals, I also received a few little extras. An early grey tea bag from teapigs and a £3 off voucher when I spend £25 as well as a pip fruit juice drink which was very yummy.

Overall I’ve had a pretty amazing experience from Hello Fresh. Despite my apprehension at first, I’ve really enjoyed discovering new recipes and have been overwhelmed at how fresh the ingredients were – they all seemed to be organic or sourced locally. It is a little expensive at £36 a box and I could probably have bought most of the ingredients myself for a lot cheaper, but overall I can’t really grumble since everything was already mostly measured out for me and delivered straight to my door and I never seem to visit the supermarket for “tea” without picking up things that I really didn’t need.

Will I try this again? Well actually I did order another box, unfortunately it was lost in delivery, but even this experience was very positive. As soon as Hello Fresh had discovered there was a problem with my box, they e-mailed me immediately to let me know what was going on so I wasn’t left hanging around for a delivery and wondering why the evening’s meal hadn’t arrived. They were also very accommodating and gave me a full refund, kept me up to date with everything that was going on and have arranged for some extra credit to be put on my account for my next box. I’ve really been blown away by the customer service and can’t fault the guys at Hello Fresh one bit! Definitely one step ahead, which made my experience so much more positive.

Each box is delivered weekly, but it’s not like other subscriptions where you have to jump through hoops to cancel or change your box type. Your online account dashboard is super simple to use and you don’t have to have a box delivered every week. Choosing your boxes is very simple and you can pick when you want your deliveries simply by clicking and un-clicking the dates on their handy calendar up to 8 weeks in advance. So if you fancied a box after each pay day, you can do this. You can also see what meals are coming up in the next weeks box, so if it’s something you don’t like, you don’t have to have a box!

It’s not something I can justify doing weekly, but I’ve scheduled in a box every 3-4 weeks and think it’s a great idea to get people excited about cooking healthy meals instead of resorting to overly processed frozen foods.

If you’d like to try Hello Fresh, or simply have a look at what meals they have coming up or what they offer, simply visit their website at Hello Fresh and take a peek. If you’ve already tried Hello Fresh, I’d love to know what box you chose and what your thoughts were!

Totally hellbent for the freshest ingredients and the tastiest new recipes

– Pants

Beauty Boxes, Vegan, Vegetarian

The Vegan Kind Beauty Box

September 15, 2014


For those of you who are regular readers, you will know that The Vegan Kind is a monthly subscription box that delivers 100% Vegan and cruelty free snacks, lifestyle items and beauty products. You will also probably know that it’s one of my favorite monthly boxes and a huge part of this is down to the discovery of new Vegan products. When they announced they would be releasing a one off beauty box packed with cruelty free products I was so excited and have been waiting for it’s release ever since. Granted I’m a little late ordering this as Gem and I have been away but the most important thing is that it has arrived and it’s in my possession!

So enough rambling, I took this lovely box into the sunshine and captured the following treats in all their unedited glory;


Inika Black Caviar Eyeliner – (RRP £13.50)

***Swatch below*** A girl can never have too many black eyeliners right? I’ve fallen out with pencil eyeliners over the years since I discovered liquid and gel, but I’m willing to forgo my bad experiences of the panda look 5 minutes after application and give this a shot. It’s application is smooth and creamy and it promises to deliver an even colour that wears all day without smudging. (I’ll definitely be the judge of this!) Another great this to note about the Inika Eyeliner is that it’s formulated with natural plant products and should be suitable for sensitive eyes. A cruelty free eyeliner that’s doesn’t smudge, can be worn all day and won’t leave me teary eyes and bleak faced – a look which others mistake for misery and sadness and beauty bloggers rcognise as “eyeliner eye”. These are bold statements to live up to and I’m going to test the to their limits! Statement aside, at £13.50 I’m not sure I could be lured into purchasing this again even if it does turn out to be the best thing I’ve ever discovered.

For more of their products you can visit their website (the we developer in me raised it’s eyebrows at the irritating navigational ability of their site!) over at


Furless ‘Must Have’ Stippling Brush – (RRP £8.50)

Oh Vegan Kind … you are the real Prince Charming. Plying me with chocolate and treats and saving the animals of the world and then you go and pull off a gesture like gifting upon me a Furless brush! I have longed for one of these brushes – just one – just to try – just to hold! Although I am contented with my Real Techniques brushes (do you have any idea how hard it is to find the perfect cruelty free makeup brush?) I have been lusting after the Furless brush range since forever. So why have I not invested in their brushes before? Probably something to do with the shipping starting at $66.90 AUD (that’s about £40 for us Brits depending on the currency rate). Thanks to The Vegan Kind, I can now experience just how beautiful their brushes are. There is only one word I need to describe this – soft – yup, the softest brush I have ever encountered! I can not wait to take this on tour with me and when I’m flush with cash, (or win the lottery) I might convince myself that £40 is worth it to support a cruelty free and Vegan brand.

To lust over all of their other things, you can do so here. Definitely not for the weak ‘walleted’.


White Rabbit Lime and Coconut Cleansing Water – (RRP £4)

There has been a bit of a mantra going on throughout this box – “Do Not Eat”. More on that later though. This gorgeous cleansing water is most definitely a great alternative to facial wipes or cleanser and toner. Not only are all the ingredients skin friendly and natural but it smells and absolutely treat! It took all my will power not to down it in one and I’m having to remind myself that this is for my face. It feels quite oily when used, but I quite like this in a product especially as my skin is dry (and my skin is hurtling towards Winter – when it could give the desert a run for it’s money!). It also leaves my skin feeling refreshed and clean which I don’t always get from a face wipe and even some cleansers and toners. This is definitely a brand I will be checking out!

Their etsy store can be found here.


Beautiful Movements Cosmetics Beauty Eyeshadow – 1g sample in “Adobe Brick” – (RRP £3.50)

***Swatch below*** This is the first of the two mineral eyeshadows in this box. Adobe Brick is a shimmery bronze which ordinarily I would have shied away from in favour of the classic neutral or black eye, but actually when tied with a green eyeshadow, you can make some beautiful smokey eyes with such a shade. Application wise it’s beautiful. Not too boring and brown but also not gold, thus the perfect “bronze” – I reckon this will look great with my gold Manowar top and teeny gold studded mini shorts (providing I lay off the pies for a while!) and will also get a look in when it comes to packing my stage makeup!


Beautiful Movements Cosmetics Beauty Eyeshadow – 1g sample in “Platinum Tiara” – (RRP £3.50)

***Swatch below*** Platinum Tiara is also a shimmery shade, this one is grey which is great since I absolutely love grey shadows as they are so versatile. I initially thought it may have been silver but on swatching the grey really shows itself, enough sparkly to add a pop to your eyes and this applies equally as well as “Adobe Brick”. I will be making a mental note to use more loose eye shadows from now on instead of allowing them to gather dust in my “collection” (*cough* hoard *cough*).

For more shades and other products you can visit them here. Take note if any one wants to buy me “Aquatic Galaxy” and “Emerald Showers” I would be very grateful!


Simply Soaps Orange Cocoa Bath Melt – (RRP £4.50)

Unfortunately, this is another product not for eating. It is -not- chocolate, despite it’s look/smell and it probably won’t taste very nice if I put it in my mouth. (Hurp de durp to all of you disgustingly minded people out there … yes Gemma, that includes you.) I bet if you enjoy baths that this would be absolutely amazing to use and I can imagine it being incredibly relaxing. Unfortunately I hate baths and the closest I get to submerging myself in that much water is the occasional swim in the pool and bathing CJ the pooch so I wont be getting to use this. I’m willing to donate this to a much worthier cause though for their enjoyment.

For more soapy products, Simply Soaps site can be found here.


Above are the swatches for the Inika Eyeliner and Beautiful Movements Eyeshadows

It would appear that The Vegan Kind beauty box has been an absolutely success. I’ve enjoyed this more than any of my regular beauty box subscriptions and I’m a little sad that it’s all over now. Although this is a one off, I really hope they look at putting together another beauty box. One of my biggest gripes about the standard beauty box is having to check all of the labels and products to see if I can use them, and then being sorely disappointed when I find out that I’ve ended up with useless items made from fish scales or goat hair. This way The Vegan Kind do all the hard work for me and I can enjoy all the fabulous bits and pieces they send via the postman!

If you want to get your hands on their one off beauty box, you can do so here for just £15.00 plus p&p. I strongly urge you all to purchase one, even if it’s just to encourage them to release another! (Ahem did I mention you get over £35 worth of stuff that didn’t hurt a single animal!)

To convince you even more of how much you need this box in your life, I’m just going to leave this picture here;

Cute-Highland-CowSurely this appeals to your inner Vegan? ^Photograph courtesy and © copyright of Four Jandals Blog

Until next time Vegan Kind Beauty Box (because there really should be a next time!)

Totally hellbent for not having to google all of the most ridiculous and random cosmetic ingredients!




The Concert Tag

September 14, 2014



Gem and I enjoying ourselves thoroughly at our last gig – The Aonia “Sunchaser” Launch

It’s been a good few weeks since we’ve been tagged in a post, but Aimee Belle of Aimee Belle Blogs tagged us in this rather unusual concert post, which is right up our street! You can check out her post here.

1. What was your first concert and how old were you?

Pants: When I was very young I remember my mum taking me to “Party In The Park” in Canon Hill after she had won tickets. I vaguely remember seeing A1 before they were A1, Madness and a few others. My first real metal concert was probably Cannibal Corpse and Kataklysm though back when I was around 13 years old.

Gem: I think officially it was Shakin’ Stevens when I was about four, how rock and roll! My first proper gig was Ocean Colour Scene at the Birmingham Academy when I was in my early teens, I remember feeling so grown up going to a proper gig without my parents!

2. What was your best concert?

Pants: Hmm there have been too many. Each special in their own way. From Symphony X on Gemma’s birthday a few years back, where I was surrounded by Symphony X fans who were all singing as loudly as Gem and I (heartwarming stuff) to seeing Behemoth and Evergrey in incredibly intimate venues with about 20 other people before they both became big. We’ve also played some pretty outstanding gigs too of which Thunderstone and Edguy come to mind. So in summary – I can’t pick one.

Gem: I can’t pick just one! Nightwish at Wacken 2013 was definitely one of the most magical experiences of my life along with Manowar’s show at the 02 in Birmingham. I’m also going to throw in every Iron Maiden show ever, Symphony X on my Birthday and getting right to the front for Avantasia and Revamp at Bloodstock. 

3. Have you ever been a VIP and met the performer? If so, who?

Pants: Hmm many times – Gem and I were asked to stand in as merch girls at Metalfest in Dudley, which saw us receive lots of free merch and many offers to go to hotel parties with a lot of the bands that were playing – we’ve also played some pretty prestigious gigs which have meant meeting other performers and being classed as a “VIP” – and of course, there was always naked Kiuas (perhaps Gem can explain this one ;o) )

Gem: We’ve had our fair share of AAA passes, but “Naked Kiuas” was probably the most spectacular, yes. We’re friends with their sound engineer and he invited us backstage for a drink (90% vodka, 10% cranberry juice in a pint glass…never drink with anyone from Finland unless you have a liver of steel!) when suddenly the band returned from their showers in various states of undress and took great delight in showing us their “Who has the best underwear” competition. I think it was a toss up between the Iron Man pants and the Kiss boxers! They were very casual and nonchalant about being naked in front of strangers though, must be a European thing!

4. Who would you love to see in concert?

Pants: I would have -loved- to have seen Death in it’s original form but sadly that will never happen … that and Dio which we definitely do not talk about! Besides that I’ve seen pretty much all of my most favorite bands.

Gem: No. We don’t talk about Dio. The only band I would love to see that I havn’t yet (off the top of my head – I’m sure there are some more!) is Ancient Bards.

5. What is your go to outfit for a concert?

Pants: Generally speaking a black denim mini skirt, a band t-shirt, my patch bag, tights or leggings and boots. Sometimes I wear skinny jeans but that’s a rarity. 

Gem: Band t-shirt (though never ever the band you are going to see of course!) and some manner of black leggings with boots usually. 

6. Last concert you went to?

Pants:  It would have been Bloodstock Open Air but as for the last band of the festival that we saw, I cannot remember. (Oops … wine …)

Gem: The last band that we saw at Bloodstock was Revamp, and then the last few songs of Morgue Orgy!

7. Future concerts?

Pants: Many! We have a few of our own gigs to look forward to – our photographers 50th birthday and another with Birmingham University’s Metal Society (our tour dates are here). Besides those we are planning on heading to Damnation Festival towards the end of the year and perhaps a small trip to Leicester to go and see Orphaned Land too.

Gem: Damnation Festival, Orphaned Land, Sabaton and Behemoth are all in the diary!

8. Which artist/group would you love to meet?

Pants: I’m very lucky to have already met most of the people I’ve wanted to! Obviously I would thrive off being able to kidnap Russell Allen and keep him in the imaginary basement tunnels between mine and Gem’s houses with all the other people we want to keep forever. I’m not convinced that will happen any time soon though.

Gem: I’d love to meet Manowar, but I wouldn’t trust myself not to throw myself at their feet and shout “We’re not worthy” lots… <- * I am not worthy – I have slightly more control over my inner fan girl than Gem ;o)

9. Would you go on stage and sing a duet with your favourite artist?

Pants: Oh definitely! Hmm maybe not a duet though – maybe I’d play bass for them and leave the singing to Gem.

Gem: I fantasise about duetting with Russell Allen or Floor Janson approximately 23409238432904 times a day!

Who do you TAG?

Pants: Ooo tough one – I’m going to tag Simone from Thirty Something OAP, only because I’m nosey and really want to know her answers to some of these questions!

Totally hellbent for heavy metal and all the concerts it comes with!

Gem & Pants


Avon Ultra Colour Bold and Soft Matte Lipstick Review

September 1, 2014



I bought these lipsticks on a whim a few campaigns ago. The Ultra Colour Bold lipstick range is pretty new to Avon and I paid £10 for 5 lipsticks out of my demo book before they were launched to customers. I don’t know why I felt that I needed another 5 lipsticks, but I was completely drawn to the bright and bold pinks that were on offer and thus a new era of Pants (the type that now wears pink lipstick) was born. If these wern’t enough, I also picked up another lipstick from the Ultra Colour collection, but this was an older colour and from the “Soft Matte” range in “Hibiscus”  – again still in keeping with my new found pink obsession, but this was from the usual brochure and cost me £3.60.

The first thing I noticed about the Ultra Colour Bold Lipsticks is that they were packaged in wonderfully sleek boxes, clearly labelled and pretty “bold”. When comparing this to the Ultra Colour Soft Matte below, which was packaged in some cheap plastic, I think the Ultra Colour Bold collection is definitely more of a winner.




From Left to Right; Magenta Flash, Fearless Fuchsia, Ruby Shock, Hibisca, Rapid Rose & Pink Punch

Unsheathed, all of the lipsticks look absolutely gorgeous, and the actual lipstick packaging is the same. Each lid has a see through panel at the top so you can see the lipstick through it, which I thought was quite a novel idea. I like to store mine upside down so I can see the sticker and and colour, but I’m aware that a lot of companies don’t always use the actual colour on the bottom of the packaging. This was at least I can take a peek when choosing my shade.


I wasn’t expecting a great deal before I swatched these, but I was pretty blown away with how … bold … they were. With the exception of Hibiscus which was the “Soft Matte” which was a little less gloss and a little more matte, the rest really did pack a punch and give a generous helping of colour. All of the lipsticks glided onto the lips effortlessly and were so easy to apply, since trying them on my lips I haven’t needed to use a lip liner as there was little to no bleed around the lips. For standard lipsticks, the longevity of the colour was also pretty spectacular. Magenta Flash has been my most used and is probably my favorite out the lot, it also seems to go well with my hair colour due to it’s unfortunate fading to bright pink during the days spent out in the sun.

Overall I’m head over heels for these lipsticks and am definitely not regretting my decision to purchase them. If you’d like to try your hand at a few Pink treasures, check out the Ultra Colour Bold range from Avon here where they are currently on special offer for just £4.75.

Have you tried the Avon Ultra Bolour Bold collection?

Totally hellbent for rediscovering my inner girl and getting down with the pink

– Pants



Beauty Boxes

Glossybox August 2014 Review

August 29, 2014



I know I cancelled by subscription to Glossybox, but I’ve still ended up with two boxes thanks to my hoard of Glossydots meaning they were free of charge. Since returning from festival season I’ve managed to come back to a Vegan Kind box, Birchbox and this month’s Glossybox so I’ve definitely been spoilt rotten.

We all know my track record with Glossybox has been a little rocky as of late and I’ve had a tendency to be severely disappointed with the contents, so this month I’m going to try and be a little more positive, so on with the contents we go …


Kryolan for Glossybox – Highlighter in “Cashmere” – 4.5g sample – RRP £12.95 for full size

I do love me a good highlight! Despite my reservations, the formula for this glides on beautifully and gives a lovely highlight – not to mention the packaging is sleek and wonderful. It reminds me a little of the elf studio range, of which I adore the square jars and the matte black lids. Kudos where credit is due though, I’ll be enjoying this.



Above: Left – Kryolan for Glossybox Highlighter in “Cashmere” swatch & Right – Essence Longlasting Lipstick in “Natural Beauty” swatch


Essence – Longlasting Lipstick in “Natural Beauty” – full size – £2.29

Essence is a brand I’ve heard a lot about recently and I’ve had to try very hard not to purchase anything myself since I’ve been trying to save money for festivals and the new arrival of a puppy (expensive stuff are puppies!). At first I winced at the colour but at second glance I’m pretty pleased with it. It’s a slightly pinker nude which goes well with my skin tone and I have been after a nice nude for a while now.  The application seems Okay but I haven’t tested this out and about so I’m unsure of the longevity yet. I am looking forward to eventually trying a few more things out from Essence though … in time of course.


Figs & Rough – Mini Hand Cream – 20ml sample – £6.95 for full size

I’m a big fan of hand cream. I generally have one on my desk, in a few bags and by the side of my bed. I also have some next to the kitchen sink so I can top myself up if I’m downstairs. More hand cream is always welcome, and after trying some of their lip balm I’m a massive fan of Figs & Rouge. This hand cream is mango and mandarin and it smells so fruity and delicious. One thing I did notice after applying it was how instantly soft my hands felt. There was no sticky or oily residue and it didn’t feel as though i’d just creamed my hands, but they felt exceptionally smooth. I can’t see this tube lasting for very long at all!


Philip Kingsley – Elasticizer – 40ml sample – £38 for full size

This one is a little strange – I’m not quite sure what the desired effect is for this. According to the Glossybox info – this is a pre-shampoo treatment delivering unrivalled elasticity, manageability, bounc and shine without weighing down or coating the hair. Well I’m pretty sure my Shampoo & Conditioner also claim to do these things. My only qualm about trying this out, is that it’s a pre-shampoo, meaning you have to apply to damp hair and leave for 10-20 minutes. Not great if you are on a schedule or if it already takes you a good half an hour when washing your hair to complete your shower routine. Still I’ll give this a bash and see what I think. At £38 a bottle though I really am expecting a miracle.


Yves Rocher – Nail Polish in “Rose” – 3ml sample – £3.60 for full size

Okay, I know I said I was going to be positive about this box, but I definitely rolled my eyes at this one. First of all – pink? Another crummy pink nail varnish? As much as I’ve recently discovered the joys of pink lipstick, one thing I really can’t get into is pink nail varnish. It just isn’t for me. Tie this in with the pitiful 3ml sample and this is definitely the worst product from this month’s box. It applied Okay, but was a little streaky and probably not a brand I’ll be going out of my way to buy any time soon. For now it will be added to the “pink” pile awaiting a new home with someone who appreciates this shade of nail.


Lalique – L’Amour perfume sample – 2ml sample – £67 for full size

I’m generally pretty non chalonce about fragrance samples. I always think most samples I receive are nice but I’ve never had any that have made me instantly want to part with £70 to buy the full size. My vast and expanding fragrance collection generally comes from my two dads at Christmas, which I am eternally grateful for. One dad buys my the expensive designer stuff such as Jean Paul and Dior and the other picks me things up when he goes abroad based on how nice they smell, which is how I discovered Escada (one of my favourite brands). Despite that I do enjoy trying out these samples and they are pretty handy for throwing in a hand bag or taking to gigs. Lalique is actually more of my Winter scent – it’s pretty heavy, and the notes of Rosebud really makes an appearance. With a slight floral undertone, although heavy it’s not too over bearing but definitely more of an evening scent. I was also pretty enthralled by the sample vial. I’ve become heavily accustomed to spray samples so I was a little confused when nothing happened upon pressing the top down. The lid actually comes off and it has a few little holes in the top so this can be rubbed over the skin. A little different to the samples of today. I probably wont be purchasing this any time soon but I wouldn’t complain if someone bought it for me!

I think this month’s box has been pretty good overall. I wasn’t blown away, but I haven’t by Glossybox for a long while now. I was a little disappointed with the size and colour of the nail varnish, but overall I’ve enjoyed all but the varnish in the August box. If you’d like to try Glossybox out, you can do so for just £10 plus P&P here. I still have a few points left to use up, so we’ll see what next month brings.

Totally hellbent for coming back to reality with a host of beauty boxes from the post man

– Pants


The Body Shop Early Harvest Raspberry Eau De Toilette Review

August 26, 2014


A while ago now I picked up the Early Harvest Raspberry Eau De Toilette from The Body Shop. After being introduced to the Vanilla body mist by Gem, I’ve been a huge fan of their fragrances and spray’s ever since. They are so versatile and perfect for any occasion.

When I ordered the 30ml sized bottle, I wasn’t expecting it to be so small, but actually I’m more than happy with it’s hand bag friendly size since it means I can now drop it into my bag if I’m out and about. The bottle is nothing fancy, but looks nice enough next to my fragrance collection and has a gorgeous fuscia hue to the bottle.

The fragrance itself is light and fruity without being too overpowering. It has the signature raspberry smell of The Body Shop and the couple of times I’ve worn it, I’ve found the longevity to be pretty good. I think this is definitely a more summer scent and I think I will be drawn back to my Vanilla body mist once the sun decides it’s had enough of this year. Having said that I reckon I’ll get a few more uses out of it before then.

I bought this for £6 with a few other items a fair few months ago but it’s been sat in the “to be reviewed” box waiting for me to give it some much deserved attention. Unfortunately the Raspberry Eau De Toilette isn’t available from The Body Shop at the moment, but I expect they will re launch this again in Spring next year. You can check out the other fragrances available via their website here though where they generally retail for around £8.50.

I’ll definitely be keeping my eye out for some of the other fragrances from The Body Shop and adding them to my collection.

Totally hellbent for fruity fragrances that fit in my bag