The Body Shop & Boots Botanics Product Review

23 March 2014

So today I bring to you three products, two from The Body Shop and one from Boots. I bought these three about 2-3 months ago, so they have been well tested.

First up is the Boots ‘Botanics Purifying Face Scrub All Bright’, I purchased this because it was half price (or something like that) and I really wanted a gentle exfoliater for my face. This is scrub is suitable for all skin types so I thought ‘hey why not give it a try’. I don’t really have anything much to say about this product because for me personally I didn’t see any benefits. Thankfully it didn’t cause me to breakout or do any damage to my skin, but I personally didn’t feel any brightening affects. Aside from that I really was a great gentle exfoliater and after using it my skin felt clean but not stripped, which is really important. But would I repurchase? No

Next is The Body Shop’s ‘Hemp Hand Protector’. As you can see from the picture it is well loved. Of course we all know about the benefits of hemp seed oil and this hand cream has been around for years. I bought one years ago, but after finding that my hands were getting really dry from work I decided to invest in it again. I like it. I wouldn’t say I love it but it does the job. To be honest it leaves this coating on after you’ve applied it which annoys me, but it does soon enough sink in. Thing is, like I said, it does the job and what more could I possible want?  For now I am not repurchasing as I have an Avon handcream to try, but I have really enjoyed using it.

The star of this show is my final purchase which is The Body Shop’s ‘Seaweed Deep Cleansing Facial Wash’. I picked this up when I was buying the hand cream because when I got to the till the lady told me about some half price offer or something (they always seem to do that at The Body Shop). This had me frantically looking in the skincare section for something to try. This wash is made for combination/oily skin which is me me me. So I picked this up wanting to try it but not expecting anything great. I don’t know about you guys but I’m a sceptic when it comes to anything, I don’t expect to work for me. But within a week I was noticing less oil on my t-zone at the end of the day. On a day-to-day basis I do not wear foundation, so this was tested on my bare face, so I don’t know how well it would work if you’re slapping foundation every day. I don’t use this wash every day, more like 2-3 times a week, as I vary my skin care routine depending on what my skin needs. You can see I've still got a bit left and I bought this at the same time as the hand cream (which was about a month and a half ago) but obviously daily use vs every other day use diminishes the product quicker. But a definite thumbs up for this product, I will certainly be going back to try more from this collection, even if is you know seaweed, if it works I am not one to knock it!

Book Review: Hotel K: The Shocking Inside Story of Bali's Most Notorious Jail

16 March 2014

Title: Hotel K: The Shocking Inside Story of Bali's Most Notorious Jail
Author: Kathryn Bonella
Genre: Non - Fiction, Crime > True Crime
Page Numbers/Length: 337 pages
Publisher: Quercus
Publish Date: 2nd February 2012
Format: Kindle

 So what’s it about?

Welcome to Hotel Kerobokan, or Hotel K, Bali's most notorious jail. Its walls touch paradise; sparkling oceans, surf beaches and palm trees on one side, while on the other it's a dark, bizarre and truly frightening underworld of sex, drugs, violence and squalor. Hotel K's filthy and disease ridden cells have been home to the infamous and the tragic: a Balinese King, Gordon Ramsay's brother, Muslim terror bombers, beautiful women tourists and surfers from across the globe. Petty thieves share cells with killers, rapists, and gangsters. Hardened drug traffickers sleep alongside unlucky tourists, who've seen their holiday turn from paradise to hell over one ecstasy pill. Hotel K is the shocking inside story of the jail and its inmates, revealing the wild 'sex nights' organised by corrupt guards for the prisoners who have cash to pay, the jail's ecstasy factory, the killings made to look like suicides, the days out at the beach, the escapes and the corruption that means anything is for sale - including a fully catered Italian jail wedding, or a luxury cell upgrade with a Bose sound system. 

 My thoughts:

I bought this book because of Kindle Daily Deal’s. Yes, I’m a sucker for them. And I’m so glad I did. Let me just say I loved this book, I gave it 5 out of 5 on Goodreads because it has been the first book I’ve read this year that I just stayed up all night to read it. I could not stop turning the pages.

The author Kathryn Bonella was at ‘Hotel K’ writing the biography of Schapelle Corby, when she found that actually all the inmates had a story to tell. Schapelle still claims her innocence and in the book she isn’t actually talked about that much. Her story is interesting though, whilst I haven’t read her biography I find her fascinating. Simply because she got 20years for drug smuggle which she denied, had she admitted it her sentence would have been a lot less but she refuses to admit to something she didn’t do. She has recently had her sentence reduced by 5 years, but I think she still has about 7 more to do. She has recently been released on parole. All of this isn’t in the book by the way; I got happy searching away on Google.

 But ANYWAY back to the book. Most inmates were guilty of their crimes and openly admitted that but were outraged by the harsh sentences they received. As the ‘what’s it all about’ states this book takes you through the reality of prison in Bali – and it ain’t pretty.

‘Hotel K’ is Kerobokan Prison in Bali and Bonella’s story is about the residents of this prison, which includes a mix of tourists who are thrown into this prison for various drug offences, and locals who have committed various minor offences. It’s a pretty international prison with the book including prisoners from Italy, Australia and the UK. It’s a prison for men and women, but the women are kept separate from men. From the sounds of the prison, it’s much more horrific than you know you’d expect prison to be. You have inmates who have cut off people’s heads, inmates who have tried to smuggle drugs into the country and inmates who have stolen a loaf of bread living side by side. This book just gives you an insight into the day to day life within this prison; just imagine how terrible it is being in Bali and being stuck in bloody prison. It also gives you an insight into how people pass the time, sometimes it sounded like a right laugh, but overall you know it’s a place that breaks you down. I don't want to spoil it for anyone so I'm being vague, but you have to read it!

I think the most important thing to note about why I liked it so much is, that the stories are all true accounts. Being someone that reads a lot of fiction, I think I forget that there are real stories out there that are also another world. That’s what I loved about this book, it felt like another world. It might has well be as it’s prison in Bali, but hey it is real life for some people.

 I think for me what made it absolutely fantastic was the pictures at the end, now I don’t know if this sounds strange, but whilst I thought the book was utterly fantastic while I was reading it they were just people. When I saw it had pictures suddenly everything became that much real. I would have given it 4 out of 5 but the pictures added that personal quality and won me over. I finished this book at 3 in the morning and was so sad that I had no more stories of sex, drugs and just prison life I guess, to keep me company :(

5 out of 5

Smashbox Liquid Halo HD Foundation Review + Photo Finish Primer

11 March 2014

So about two weeks ago I went off in search for a new foundation. My MAC was too light for me and I just wanted a better one than my Sleek one, I also wanted an oil free foundation. After watching Lisa Eldridge’s foundation series, I thought I would try Revlon Color Stay, so I headed off to Marble Arch Superdrug and Boots to see if they would have my colour. No such luck! However the new Boots that has opened up in Marble Arch had a Smashbox stand and I thought I’d just browse and had one of the lovely assistants come up to me. I told her what I was looking for and my skin type and she recommended me this foundation: 

 When she applied it on I thought, 'bloody hell she is applying a lot' but now after using it I see that it felt like a lot because the pump emits the smallest amount. Anyway in the store it looked wonderful but I was sceptical because of the bright lighting in store. I purchased the Liquid Halo HD Foundation (oil free) at £27 something, and came home to look at it properly. I even rubbed off half my face and got my friend to look at the difference to see if it was worth keeping. She said yes, so you know three opinions on the foundation were good enough for me to keep it and try it. Plus I was going out that night so I whipped it out of the box to try it. 

 I didn’t see a point in swatching it on my hand because my hands are several shades lighter than my face. I’ve ummed and ahhed about this foundation for a bit since wearing it over the past couple of weeks. I think the main thing is; I’m used to feeling foundation on my skin and with this I felt like it was barely there! Although this is a good thing (very good) it was weird for me, I had to keep looking in the mirror to check that I had actually applied some to my face! It was only 3 days ago that I looked again at the bottle and realised it was a HD foundation. After my lusting for Make Up Forever HD Invisible Cover foundation I was so shocked at myself for not noticing. I don’t know if the HD factor is the reason for its soft like feeling on the skin but whatever it is I certainly like it!

 Overall I really like this foundation. I don’t wear foundation on a day to day basis but I feel like it is an all purpose foundation for me simply because, on day to day occasions I can wear it when my skin looks rough and it doesn’t look try hard. But then for special occasions I can build it up for the occasion. The foundation is medium to full coverage and is a 30ml bottle. I also love how much of a perfect match this is for my skin tone; I have never had a foundation that suits my face colour and neck so well. It is also a 16 hour wear foundation. 

 I also received a sample of their primer with my purchase, as she put that on my face before doing applying the foundation. This is the Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer (again oil free).

 I love this primer! Now that I have tried this one, I really don’t think I can bear to put my foundation on without it, I have tried this foundation without the primer and I didn’t feel it looked as great and my T-Zone got oiler very quickly. So next thing to purchase and weep about is the primer. I also received some samples of their new eye shadow palette, but of course I’ve misplaced that! I am looking forward to trying more from Smashbox though because I’ve generally heard many good things about them.

 Have you ever tried anything from Smashbox? What other thing should I try?

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