New Monday + New Week = New Goals | secondblonde

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I try to start each week with new goals and I don’t mean bigger picture life changing goals I just mean I try and start each week with a fresh focus no matter how big or small the goal is. Although working in retail your days/weeks can get a bit jumbled I still stick to Monday as the best day to set myself a personal or professional target.

The target could be a mundane one such as a household task like clearing out/tidying up an area of the house you’ve been putting off, which when it’s done is satisfyingly rewarding. It may be a personal  goal like setting more time aside for yourself or to start a new hobby or catch up with family or a friend you’ve been meaning to make time for. Or it could be dealing with your finances and searching for better deals saving you money annually that can go towards another goal! You get the picture. Whatever you decide to do set yourself a realistic goal. Plan it, write it down and stick to it! It doesn’t have to be complicated just a simple list will do and tick it off as you achieve it…seeing the results can be quite rewarding and give a sense if achievement with a positive impact to do more.

This week my focus is my beauty blog and social media platforms I manage- I’ve been so busy with “life” I’ve somehow neglected my passion but now I’ve set myself some goals my blogging mojo is back!

What are your personal goals this week?

Secondblonde x

I’m Cheating on MAC Ruby Woo with NARS Mysterious Red | secondblonde

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If you know me or read my posts you know I wear a matte red lip on a daily basis and have been wearing Ruby Woo by Mac for at least 5 years, it’s kinda become my signature colour. The beauty hall I work in is full of fabulous brands so recently I decided it was time to explore new alternatives to my beloved Ruby Woo. With my loyalty voucher to redeem my first stop is the NARS counter…I decided to go for one of their new (well new to me) Velvet Matte Lip Pencil’s.

The Promise The idea of this product is that you still get the application of a lipstick but with the convenience of a pencil in a jumbo crayon design. The colour is very pigmented, the texture is a  velvety matte finish. It’s formula promises a creamy texture as it has unique silicones which ensure long lasting colour and it’s enriched with vitamin E.

Results I’ve been wearing this lip colour for about four weeks, I love the colour it’s a retro kind of red just how I like it. The fact it’s a jumbo pencil is really easy to use, I do still use a lip liner otherwise I find it bleeds a little (but hey that may just be my age) The colour is really intense and stays put all day with a top after eating. The creamy texture feels great on my lips and they certainly look more hydrated while being matte. The only downside in my opinion is that I think this will not last as long as a traditional lipstick as I need to sharpen it quite often.

Summary I’m definitely a convert…sorry Ruby Woo! I will be re-purchasing. Check out NARS here £20

What NARS lip products have you tried? would love to hear your experiences.

Secondblonde x

 

Power of The Baobab: My Review of Aduna Baobab Superfruit Powder| secondblonde

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You may of heard me raving about this superfruit powder on my YouTube Channel I’m not really one for jumping on the band wagon of the latest health foods. A few of my friends at work were already taking it regular and said it was really good so I took the plunge and gave it a go.

The Product The baobab fruit is the only fruit that dries naturally on the branch. Aduna work with small scale producers in rural Africa to harvest, remove seeds and sieve to produce a raw wholefood powder. It’s rich in Vitamin C (single dose provides 33% of your daily requirement and 50% fibre) Baobab fruit contains the highest antioxidant level. It’s 100% natural and organic so therefore absorbs into your body with no preservatives or additives, Suitable for vegetarians and vegans and is kosher certified.

The Promise To bring out your natural vibrancy making you look good and feel good by promoting good skin health and giving energy release and support immune functions.

My Verdict The first time I tried this I added two teaspoons to my porridge with almond milk before popping it in the microwave. It did give my porridge a slightly bitter taste but it was still enjoyable. I was on an early shift at work so was up at the crack of dawn. Normally by 11:30/12:00ish I have a bit of a slump feeling tired, sluggish and a bit blah! Basically like I need a coffee or food. However…after taking this “magic” powder I had so much energy and was literally dancing around the room! I felt really energised the whole day and ready to face anything.

As not to change the taste of my breakfast I sometimes put 2 teaspoons in a cup, add a little water to mix into a paste – then add two tablespoons of natural yoghurt and stir until blended. Then eat it on it’s own, I prefer the taste this way. It’s kind of like a sour citrus. I don’t love it but it’s ok. Aduna have won “great taste awards”.

To see the skin benefits by supporting collagen formation to get the baobab glow you need to take daily, I haven’t been taking it daily yet and only been taking on days I feel I need it.

Summary This is a fantastic food supplement what does exactly what it promises to do and I really like the ethos of the brand. Aduna have other health powders and energy bars in their range. I will definitely re-purchase the Baobab Superfruit Powder when mine is finished. Maybe I should start taking daily and come back to you with results of my skin.

Take a look at the Baobab Superfruit Powder here £14 170g

Let me know if you’ve tried any superfood supplements that you got results from, I’d love to hear your recommendations.

Secondblonde x

3 Beauty Products I’m Using Right Now | secondblonde

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Watch my Vlog here to find out what I am using right now!

Hi Everyone welcome back to my YouTube Channel secondblonde, hope you are all having a nice week so far. Today I’m sharing with you some beauty products that I’m using on a daily basis right now. Hope you enjoy it and thanks for coming back, don’t forget to like, share and subscribe.

If you have any questions or feedback please add them to the comments, I love hearing from you it gives me the confidence to carry on. Anyway here are the links of where to buy and further info on the products I’ve mentioned in the vlog:

Color Wow Kale Cocktail £22 here

Dr Sebagh Luminous Glow Cream £72 here

C.O Bigelow Mentha Lip Balm Stick with SPF 15 £8.50 here

 
You can also find me:
Instagram: @secondblonde
Twitter: @secondblonde
Facebook: /secondblonde

Thank you for watching.

Secondblonde x

Magic Multi-Purpose Oil; Goe Oil 85g |secondblonde

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I’ve completely fallen in love with Goe Oil by Jao Brand. It’s a 100% natural semi-solid all over body oil that turns to a liquid when slightly warmed between your hands, it smells gorgeous as it is lightly scented with Monoi Tiare from Tahiti.

What’s in it? It contains 28 plant, fruit, flower oils & butters as follows…

Jojoba Butter, Sunflower Oil, Jojoba Oil, Rice Bran Oil, Avocado Butter, Grape Seed Butter, Grape Seed Oil, Cocoa Butter, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Rose Hip Oil, Soy Lecithin, Pumpkin Seed Butter, Mango Butter, Cupuacu Butter, Avocado Oil, Shea Butter, Hemp Seed Oil, Kukuinut Oil, Chamomile Oil, Beeswax, Calendula Oil, Essential Oils, Tocopherol, Vitamin E, Acetate, Rosemary Extra

It’s a multi-tasking product you can use from head to toe, their tagline on their packaging is “HANDS. HAIR. BODY & SOUL” which couldn’t be more true.

Verdict It keeps my skin soft and hydrated all day and is also great for spot applying on dry patches. Some use it as an intensive hair mask which I think will suit very course/curly or frizzy hair which soaks up moisture like a sponge. I tend to use a very tiny amount on dry hair to tame my fly-aways.

* Watch my YouTube review of Goe Oil here

Summary I love this product and already have my second tube ready to go. It costs £35 so it’s not cheap however well worth every penny and a very little goes a long long way, you can buy your here

A customer I recommended it to at work came back two weeks later to personally thank me as she had received so many compliments on the overall look of her skin and being asked “what are you wearing” due to the soft scent. She also has long luscious ringlet naturally curly hair and this has defined her curls making her hair look healthier and shiny. This feedback made my day!

Jao Brand have been kind enough to send me their lip-balm and skin cream to try out what a lucky girl I am! keep posted for my review of them soon.

Thank you for reading, let me know if you’ve tried this oil or any similar as I’d love to hear from you.

Secondblonde x

 

Beauty Blogging Tips For Beginners | secondblonde

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FIND YOUR NICHE What is it about beauty that you you love, find your niche maybe you enjoy painting your nails and have beautiful hands-you can focus on hand/nails. Or perhaps you are passionate about skincare. I’m not saying you can only blog about one type of product,  I’m saying find your own niche so your blog can be truly you.

STYLE & IMAGERY Try to stand out! it’s ok to be inspired by other blogger’s but don’t be tempted to copy anyone. You must stay true to you, start thinking about the theme of your blog layout and the style of photo’s you will take. You can use backdrops and props but keep it simple and in keeping with your personality and why you have chosen to start blogging, then it will be unique to you.

READERS Think about who will read your blog, try to make your content specific to your audience. You may be blogging about beauty in your teens so therefore will need to write in a style that is appealing to that age group.

COMMITMENT Be prepared to put aside a lot of your spare time, blogging looks easy and very glamorous, the truth is it takes up a lot of time, passion and commitment – it’s almost like having a second part-time unpaid job!

FOLLOWERS This surely doesn’t happen overnight, trust me I’ve been blogging for 5 years years. Make sure you are in it for the long haul, after you put in the effort you will see your followers and post hits grow.

FREE STUFF If you start a blog as you think lot’s of companies or PR agency’s will contact you and send you FREE beauty products then think again! If this is the reason you are starting a blog then don’t bother. Your blog will never have the passion and therefore will not have your personality/tone of voice and not be unique.

DOMAINE NAME As a start-up theres no reason for you to spend any money, you can host your blog for free on platforms like blogger or wordpress. I started with blogger and moved to wordpress a few years later. I didn’t invest in my domaine name secondblonde.com until last year, previously I was secondblonde.wordpress.com it was kind of a milestone present to myself. I also felt ready to step it up a little and start promoting myself without feeling shy about it.

EQUIPMENT You don’t need anything fancy, I still use an iphone to take my photo’s and just started doing videos on my iphone for my new YouTube Channel subscribe here I also rely on natural daylight for my images and videos. It does determine when I can shoot however it’s the cheapest and easiest option.

HOW OFTEN SHALL I POST There’s no wrong or right answer here. It will depend on what free time you have around your job/family life etc My only advice is to keep it consistent for example if you blog once a week then stick to it, even better if you can choose the same day of the week for it to go out. Your readers will get into a pattern and check back to see what’s new. When it becomes irregular they stop bothering to come back. *TIP schedule your blog posts in advance (you can choose the date and time it goes out) if you know you will be too busy on the day they normally go out.

MONETISE YOUR BLOG There are lot’s of ways to monetise your blog like using paid adverts or being an affiliate and earning commission if someone purchases a product via your link. I suggest you don’t worry about these things yet as they only accept applicants that meet their stats requirements like number of followers/traffic etc I’m only starting to explore these avenues now and have yet to make my first penny!

NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK This should be an obvious one, make sure you are active on social media. I use Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. It’s advisable that you have the same name on your platforms so you are easy to find and with the same themes/logos/profile pics etc Don’t be shy to promote yourself on all of these platforms, after all if you don’t shout out about it then how will anyone read your posts! Starting off sharing it with family/friends is a good way to gain confidence and give you a boost when they have positive feedback – also they will be really honest which is always a good thing.

THERE YOU GO! GET OUT THERE, GET INSPIRED AND GET BLOGGING….

I hope you have found his post useful, if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask. You can also leave your links in the comments below, I always love to see new talent.

Good Luck

Secondblonde x

Beauty Trials: What I am Currently Testing

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Working in beauty I get to try/test out products. Some I have purchased, some are samples given after training sessions and some I’ve earned by winning sales incentives…lucky girl I am indeed.

Here’s a little look at some of the fantastic products I’m currently trying out, I would love to hear your feedback of these brands and products you may have tried or love. All of these are available in store where I work or online, I’ve added direct links below so you can read product overviews about them and view price points etc…

Korres Jasmine Shower Gel & Body Milk click here

Bamford Botanic Body Oil & Pebble Soap click here

Omorovicza Thermal Cleansing Balm & Balancing Moisturiser click here

de Mamiel Restorative Cleansing Balm & Brightening Cleanse and Exfoliate click here

Aveda Stress Fix Body Cream click here

Nars Blusher and Velvet Matte Skin click here

Results coming soon…

Secondblonde x

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When it’s so good you get another!

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If you are a regular reader of my post’s you will already know how much I love this body cream from Bamford, read full post here. So here I am on my second jar and still madly in love with it for it’s all day hydrating non-greasy texture and most of all it’s beautiful calming scent which I personally find so comforting and relaxing.

If ever I know I will have a busy day ahead after my morning shower I add extra cream to my upper body, neck and back of my ears. This is so when I’m moving around (normally at a pace) I get little bursts of it’s beautiful scent which instantly makes me feel relaxed.

I did mention in my original review that I’d like to try the Geranium, Lavender and Peppermint body cream next. I do in fact have it ready to go however, I couldn’t resist another jar of this first!

Have you tried any of the Bamford bath and body range? I’d love to hear your thoughts and read your reviews. You can buy this beautiful certified organic body cream here. and check out some of thier other wonderful products.

Secondblonde x

Travel Mini’s That Make It Into My Overnight Bag

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I don’t know about you but I always want to take all my beauty potions with me just for one night, then my husband’s face (when we are packing a rucksack for the motorbike he explains we can’t take extra weight which makes me realise I only need a few essentials) That’s when I dig around my stash for all my little travel/sample sizes I have knocking around, these are the best ones that make it into my bag…

HAIR: Pureology Strength Cure Fabulous Lengths – a leave-in cream that protects long hair from breakage and leaves your hair feeling velvety soft making it easy to style. Buy here

BODY: This Works Deep Calm Bath & Shower Gel – leaves my skin feeling moisturised, soft and lightly fragranced. Also great to use at night before bed to promote a good nights sleep. Buy here

Aromatherapy Associates Revive Morning Bath & Shower Oil – the perfect “wake me up” with refreshing and indulging powers of pink grapefruit, rosemary and juniper berries for a fantastic and reviving start to the day. Buy here

Nivea Creme – enriched with eucerit a special moisturiser ingredient, a budget multi-functional cream we all trust. Buy here

FACE: Ren 3-in-1 Cleansing Water – I opt for a micellar water as a quick and effective cleanser to remove make-up and refresh my skin. A one product does it all for convenience (doesn’t hurt for 1 night) it cleanses my skin without dryness feeling revived and toned without tightness. Buy here

Dr Sebagh Serum Repair –  an intensive collagen hyaluronic acid for tightening, brightening, plumping and hydration – a mini facial on the go! Buy here

Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer – a light and effective lotion with vitamin E and A. Buy here

Dr. Perricone No Foundation Foundation – gives effortless dewy finish, leaves skin glowing, radiant and youthful. A mineral based make-up formula with SPF 30. Buy here

Cotton Buds – handy for correcting any eye make-up hick-ups or use as applicators.

Face Flannel – I prefer to use my own!

What do you pack in your overnight bag when you are travelling light and cannot take full sized products with you? Love to hear your recommendations and ticks.

Secondblonde x

 

 

 

6 Ways to Keep Your Collagen & Skin Young

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Collagen is a protein that our skin cells produce to “hold” our skin together keeping it’s firmness and elasticity. Young skin is plump and smooth because it constantly naturally re-generates itself. As we age our collagen production slows down, from 25yrs collagen slowly decreases and by 45yrs it’s 30% less meaning your skin can get damaged due to sun exposure or bad habits and result in wrinkles and sagging skin.

Sun damage made simple – UVB Rays are the rays that burn our skin, UVA Rays are the rays that age our skin. So UVA Rays break down fibres and elasticity in our skin creating wrinkles. So here’s what you can do to help boost your collagen preventing ageing skin:

1.Up Your Vitamin C Intake Vitamin C is crucial to the formulation of collagen and it’s difficult for our bodies to restore vitamin C so the more you can get the better. Also add Vitamin C to your daily skin care routine like these Pure Vitamin C Powder Cream from Dr Sebagh available at Liberty Beauty Hall to reactivate your collagen levels.

 

 

2.Cut Down Your Sugar Habits Eating too many sugary foods can be a beauty disaster! It causes premature ageing by a process called glycation (the cellular level of the skins structure resulting in wrinkling and loss of elasticity)

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3.Use an SPF SPF’s protect our skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Use an SPF 15 – 30, there are lot’s of skin creams and tinted moisturisers with added SPF’s. Add a shield of protection under your make-up like this Dermalogica product available at Liberty Beauty HallIMG_3457

 

4.Exfoliate This seems like an obvious one but I’m always surprised how many people skip this part of their weekly routine relying purely on their magic lotions and potions to do the trick. I advise both! Removing the top layer of dead skin helps speed up the natural process of skin and collagen renewal. You can also use Acid Peels or Glycolic Overnight Peels in addition to a good old fashioned exfoliation – use gentle products that aren’t too harsh for the face. I like to use just a face flannel to gently exfoliate my skin with after cleansing.

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5.Add Antioxidants To Your Routine Adding antioxidants to your skincare and your diet can do wonders for your skin keeping you looking young. Sip on green tea (I do struggle with green tea so opt for a green tea infused with peppermint to hide the taste) Also use creams and active serums containing antioxidants like this Aesop Parsley Seed Anti-Oxidant Hydrator available at Liberty Beauty Hall 

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6.Massage Your Skin Massaging your face daily will help boost the production  of collagen giving skin a plump appearance for smoother younger looking skin. Massage also stimulates the lymph glands to promote clearer skin, massage with a collagen boosting face oil. I massage my skin for a minute in the morning while applying face serum before my moisturiser. (when you have more time and not rushing out the door you should massage your face for at least 5 mins)

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Oh one last thing, always treat your skin to a face mask once a week, choose a day and stick to it so you get into a routine. The best day is on a Sunday or on your day off so you’ve got at least 15mins to relax and for the mask to do it’s job well.

What anti-ageing skin care advice do you have? I’d love to hear your tips and ticks.

Secondblonde x