Saturday, 13 June 2015

Review | Dove Intensive Repair Self Warming Hair Mask

I’m constantly on the lookout for deep hair treatments. My hair is surprisingly in reasonable condition considering the amount of years I've been dying and styling it, however like most of us, my hair is often in need of a little TLC (especially at this time of year, when the humidity makes me look like a scarecrow). So this evening, I thought... why not try out the Dove Intensive Repair Self-Warming Mask to see if it would help to make a difference?! 

The treatment claims to "generate a gentle heat for a deep hair treatment. This powerful fusion, with KERATIN REPAIR ACTIVITIES (I have no idea why this is capitalised either... maybe to emphasise the overall greatness of this Dove product), penetrates to help repair and restore proteins at a cellular level. Helps restore at the deepest layers to leave hair strong, shiny and up to 10x more resilient against future damage." Well, let's see shall we?

When I first looked at the packaging, I did have a little giggle to myself because it looked like a sample you get in the post instead of a full-sized product BUT once you actually open it (aha!), you will see that inside there is a regenerating treatment mask sachet and a small heat activating serum i.e. the hexagon shaped thing in the photo above. BLOG FACT OF THE DAY: I had to look on the internet to make sure it was actually a hexagon (better to be safe than completely wrong). Now, I know it doesn't look like there's much product in there, but trust me on this one... there is! 

As with most deep conditioning treatments, you have to wash your hair first. I used the Dove Damage Solutions Colour Care shampoo. It smells absolutely wonderful and keeps it looking vibrant and refreshed. I must emphasise the importance of wetting your hair properly BEFORE you apply any sort of shampoo to your scalp (ALWAYS the scalp, NEVER the ends. It isn't necessary and when focusing on your scalp you are washing away the dirt build-up. Conditioner is for the ends... the oldest part of your hair). Whenever I feel like it's time to massage my shampoo in, I always stand under the shower head for just that little bit longer because the wetter it is, the better the shampoo will spread and lather properly. Once you've shampooed the hair, the back of the sachet says to empty it's contents onto just the mid-length and ends of the hair and to leave it in. After that, the heat activating serum is ready to be applied over the top. It will feel very warm as soon as you put it into your hands, so it's best to put it in your hair straight away so it gets the full benefit of the treatment.

It says to leave it in for just three minutes, but I ended up wrapping my head in a towel to make sure the product is warmed even more and left it in for ten minutes instead. It's amazing what you can do in ten minutes... I listened to a few of Backstreet Boy's Greatest Hits (as you do) but it's entirely up to you how you spend your time! When it was time to wash it out, I blasted my hair with freezing cold water instead of lukewarm as it's a proven way to add shine intensity (if you're not crazy like me, then don't do it but it has its benefits!). I noticed afterwards once it had started to air dry that it smelt gorgeous and the ends of my hair felt incredibly softer than before. Different people may get different results when using this Dove treatment, but I am quite pleased with it! Who has used this product and what did you think? 

Friday, 6 March 2015

A British Girl Living the American Dream: Part 1

It's been exactly ONE MONTH since I left the UK for the US. When I boarded my 13 hour flight from London Gatwick to Orlando, Florida, a ton of emotions were flooding through me. Firstly, I'm 21 and this would be the first time I would ever be living on my own (scary thought!). For most people moving out is a challenging but natural part of life; you've grown up and you're now going off into the big wide world. However, most people my age would be moving somewhere else within their own country. I wasn't... I was moving across the Atlantic Ocean to America. I was excited to do something so completely out of my comfort zone, but the thought was also a little daunting. Secondly, how would I cope being five hours behind the people I love? Would I not like being out of the loop with everyone back home? When I applied for a place on this exchange programme, I was so passionate about getting it and put my heart and soul into everything I did. I worked extremely hard throughout the whole process of writing an entrance essay, to being short-listed, to creating a video with audio and finally having an interview in front of a panel. Despite how difficult it was to get a place, I did. And despite how much I thought I would be thrown into the deep end, I went for it anyway. I feel like that is what life should be about - we need to take risks in order to gain. We need to take that final leap of faith so we can turn around and say 'I did it'. This is what makes people so interesting... hearing about their experiences. 

Moving to the USA has taught me many things about myself and about life in general. I am so much more independent now than I have ever been before. I've learnt about the importance of family and friends and not taking them for granted... but also, how to cope being on your own for hours at a time. I'm the type of person who loves sociable settings and engaging in funny conversations with people (I can talk for England...), but I also really appreciate the kind of days where I can just be comfortable keeping myself company; and in my case that usually involves reading a book or going on blogs (hint to add your links below haha). What I find most interesting about America is the people and how different they are to the British. They are very straightforward, always want to help, love to give compliments about anything and everything and don't beat around the bush - which I love! They have also found me to be quite interesting. They don't understand my sarcasm and take everything a little too literally, but other than that they are so interested in my culture and how I live back home. I keep having to explain that I'm not used to eating things in such large amounts and everywhere I go it's obvious they know I'm a non-resident alien because of the way I dress - apparently British people have a very unique sense of style!

I've had to get used to using the American currency on a daily basis. I'm sorry America, I love you but I just can't get my head around the practicality of a one dollar note... it makes me feel like I'm rich when I'm actually far from it. It's also very strange that you can't really walk anywhere. There is so much land here and everything is ten times bigger than back home in cute little England, so I have no choice but to cab it to places, get the bus (whenever they run) or actually walk. If it snows in Georgia everyone goes into a complete panic mode and my university ended up being closed for a week which was quite amusing as I'm so used to that sort of weather at home anyway. Fitting my life into a suitcase was no easy task and had to be completed in shifts on the run up to my departure, but I managed to do it without going over my luggage limit wahoo! I still have two months left of my placement but I'm certainly not wishing it away. I'm so thankful I had the opportunity to do a study abroad programme because after all an experience like this will stay with me for the rest of my life. Have any of you completed a study abroad placement or are you thinking of doing it? Let me know in the comments below and keep an eye out for my Part 2! 


Friday, 2 January 2015

My 10 'Realistic' Resolutions

I guess I should start by saying HAPPY NEW YEAR... I hope 2015 is an amazing year for each and every one of you! It's that time again when most of us reflect over everything that happened last year, what went well, what didn't go so well, and what we would like to change. In the past I have made a ton of resolutions, only to go and drop them a month down the line. This year I've decided to make some better, more realistic ones, that hopefully, (fingers crossed), I'll be able to actually achieve! So here's a list of my top ten New Year's Resolutions... 

1. BE POSITIVE - I know you've probably heard this one before and you're currently rolling your eyes, but I would really love to go through 2015 with a much better outlook on life. In the past I have unfortunately been a rather 'glass half empty' type with a tendency to worry about lots of different things on the inside which makes my anxiety very bad, and I'd like that to change. If something doesn't work out or things are going wrong, we should all try to look at the bright side of things and what IS going right... because nine times out of ten, you still have an awful lot going for you. 

2. READ EVEN MORE BOOKS - See, most people would put to just 'read more' but ever since I was little I've always loved reading any book or story I could get my hands on, so I am a bit of a bookworm. I'd also like to keep track of what I thought about a particular novel after I've read it by jotting down what I thought, so at the end of the year I can see all the books I managed to get through. Unique! 

3. KEEP TABS ON WHAT I EAT/BE A REGULAR GYM GOER - THIS IS THE MOST TYPICAL ONE OF ALL! I don't exactly want to lose a lot of weight but I do want to change my lifestyle for the better, eat lots of protein and fibres, drink more water, and exercise more regularly so I can tone up a bit.

4. TAKE REGULAR SOCIAL MEDIA BREAKS - I'm very guilty of loving social media and using my phone all.the.time. I'd like to have more quality time with the people who I care about the most. It'd be nice to get off Facebook every once in a while and start living in the real world!  

5. LOOK AFTER MY SKIN - I'd like to stick to a regular skincare regime where I steam it once a week and look after it every day. I want skin like porcelain and I can get quite self conscious about it when it doesn't look up to scratch. 

6. MAKE NEW FRIENDS - Although I love my oldest friends who I've known for years, it would be nice to expand the social circle a little more this year and start hanging out with lots of different people. 

7. FIND A JOB I LOVE - This is a big one for me! After I return from my semester abroad in the USA, I want to quit my current job and find one I actually enjoy and find useful. It'd be cool to try something I've never done before. I've always worked in retail, so it would be a breath of fresh air if I got something that was secretarial in some way. 

8. SPEND MORE TIME WITH FAMILY - It's hard when life gets so busy we forget to spend it with the people we live with. When I look back over 2014, I realise now that I should have spent a lot more time with my family than what I did.  

9. FOCUS ON WHAT'S IMPORTANT - I am naturally quite an organised person, but this year is all about prioritising! That doesn't mean I'm not going to have any fun, but I need to stay focused to achieve what I want. 

10. LET THE LIGHT IN - This sounds very spiritual doesn't it?! 2015 will all be about radiating love, spreading positivity, making others happy, and most importantly, learning to love myself for who I am.    

Last but not least, I'd like to take this opportunity to personally thank YOU - my readership over 2014. When I was a teenager, one of my favourite things in the world would be to read blogs, and I looked up to these incredible women that wrote them. I quickly became intrigued with it and loved how you could leave someone's website having learnt something, hearing about their day or just feeling inspired by what they had said. I decided I had nothing to lose and thought I'd join in and give it a go too! When I first started writing Beloved Jaine a year ago, I could never have imagined in my wildest dreams that the viewer hits would be 3000+, people from all over the world would be reading it in their own language, I would have strangers sending me very touching messages saying that something I'd written had made them cry (in the good way) and I would have over 70 followers on Bloglovin. I know that this doesn't sound like much to some, but to me it is a big deal. It's something I've always wanted to do and it's so overwhelming to know that my blog has grown from being just something I was doing in my spare time, in the privacy of my bedroom, to now promoting it as a business, I guess you could say, to people I meet at launch parties and special events. 2014 has been a crazy ride... I know in my heart that I still have an awful lot to learn about all of this. I'm still young and haven't even graduated yet! However, I definitely feel I have pushed myself in the best way possible to make this blog the best it can be. I've always had a streak of determination and drive, but I could never have foreseen things like beauty companies and PR people contacting me to ask if I can work with them... I honestly thought my friends would be the only ones reading it! To me, this will always be a hobby that I'm very passionate about - but knowing people are starting to take me seriously is so rewarding.  

I've met some incredible fellow bloggers, journalists and PR people offline, as well as online, and everyone has been so welcoming and lovely in this huge blogging community... I've even made a few friends who I'm sure I'll be meeting up with and working with in the not so distant future. I can't thank these people (and you!) enough... it sounds cliche but I really do appreciate every single follower, reader and brand who takes a little time out of their busy lives to listen to what I have to say. I still see myself as awkward Aimee, an average person who was never really that interesting - but I guess I must be! I now have this awesome platform to share all of my life/beauty/fashion tips and experiences with. I hope you stick with me this year! All my love, Aimee xxx

Friday, 19 December 2014

Winter Wonderland

On Tuesday evening, my boyfriend and I made a spontaneous little trip up to the incredible Hyde Park to go to Winter Wonderland to get ourselves into the Christmassy spirit... (girls just love a bit of spontaneity don't they?!) But before we caught the tube to Hyde Corner, we made a tiny detour to Kings Cross station where we found Platform 9 3/4! Being a massive Potter fan, I was in my element as there was a trolley half way through the wall which made me giggle quite a lot. It does make me smile knowing commuters don't bat an eyelid because everyone knows what it is and why it is there. Everyone loves Harry Potter! Unfortunately, I couldn't get a photo of the magical trolley making it's way onto the Hogwarts Express, but I did have a browse in the hidden Harry Potter shop next to it and the merchandise was so adorable! If someone wants to buy me the Hedwig key chain for my car keys, I will love you forever.  

I was told that it would be best to go to Winter Wonderland in the evening because it apparently has a much better atmosphere, and boy did it deliver! I am a complete sucker for all things cutesy and romantic, so I'm really glad I had the chance to go because I didn't want to miss it again like I did last year. It was completely packed as you could probably expect. The Christmas market was so pretty and I loved how everything was lit up with fairy lights (I do love my fairy lights!). We froze ourselves silly in the -8 degrees Magical Ice Kingdom, and I just couldn't resist going down the slide made of complete ice - how embarrassing! There are also a ton of rides to go on and they're not just your average ones - all sorts of roller coasters and one even had a waterfall coming out of it! If you're planning on going with your family or friends, it is completely free to get in, but if you want to visit certain attractions you have to purchase tickets online here. It's on until the the 4th January 2015, and the site is open daily (apart from Christmas Day of course!) from 10am - 10pm so you're free to visit whenever you please. I would definitely recommend it as it is such a fun day/evening out and it is right by the stunning Oxford Street so if you needed to get some last minute Christmas presents you are spoilt for choice (and obviously the Disney store is there so that is a perfect excuse to go). I apologise if some of my photography is a bit on the bright side in some of them... it was really hard to get decent photographs because of all the lights.   

If I don't post again before Christmas, I hope all you lovely lot have a very merry Christmas with your loved ones. I hope you all get spoilt rotten by Santa and you eat lots of amazing food! Have a good one guys xx 

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

You Are Strong

I've always wanted to be able to write posts that are useful to people and I've always been quite sceptical over how intimate and personal my writing gets. Beloved Jaine is first and foremost a beauty, fashion and lifestyle blog where I'll talk about recent amazing products I've tried (or not!), and my experiences as an internet persona (if that's what you want to call it?). I understand that readers do generally enjoy getting to know the person behind the words, but there's always been a part of me that thought maybe revealing too much would mean the reader doesn't take anything away from it. There was also the possibility that they wouldn't be that interested anyway.  Over the past few weeks I've noticed that quite a few girls on social media aren't happy with themselves physically and emotionally. It is upsetting because I can identify with them, and trust me that is very hard to admit. I think if you are a beauty blogger or an outgoing individual, there is the automatic assumption that you ooze total body confidence and are 100% content with the type of person that you are. That is actually not very accurate. Myself, like most people, have very good days and very down days. One morning I'll wake up and I'll feel like I can take on the world, and then the next day I'll feel like a completely different person. Sometimes I love myself (I feel bad for saying this - damn you society) and sometimes I absolutely hate myself. I tend to try and avoid any type of negativity, because one of the main reasons I write Beloved Jaine is to make people like you feel good about yourself. However I feel that being honest is an incredible trait to have in a person. You might not take anything away from this and wonder why you bothered in the first place, or you might end up not feeling so alone because I, like you, have been there. I want you to know that you don't have to be ashamed of who you are, or how you look or how other people perceive you. You're not weak for having doubts about yourself or having a cry every now and again. Everyone has insecurities,  and you will soldier on just like you always do because you are so incredibly strong. 

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Lush Bluewater VIP Opening Party

I was recently invited to the VIP Opening Party of the brand new Lush store in Bluewater and brought my friend, Sam, along with me as a plus one. This was the first launch event I've been invited to as a blogger, so I wasn't going to say no in the RSVP! I didn't quite know what to expect, but was very pleased that I went. As soon as we walked in the staff were very friendly and approachable. I spoke to one member of staff and said that I was looking for a deep hair treatment that would be good for damaged ends. She spoke to us for a good fifteen minutes, asking me all sorts of questions about what condition my hair was in to try and find the best product to recommend. Eventually we settled on a hair care product called 'Marilyn' which you use every six to eight weeks, depending on your hair regime (review of this coming very soon!). The new shop d├ęcor was very bright and colourful, and they had arranged the entire store around a cute little island counter in the middle, where you could get free skin consultations. We were treated as typical VIP's throughout the evening and enjoyed some lovely beverages of orange juice and champagne, as well as cake and a relaxing arm massage with a wonderful smelling soap bar of our choice. We also enjoyed looking at the brand new Halloween and Christmas collections before anyone else! I made my own bath bomb which was very fun to do. Sam and I also took part in a rather interesting 'smell game' with one of the staff. She told me to tell her a happy memory of mine and to elaborate on all five senses of that memory (taste, touch, smell, see, hear...). So I said about my time at the Isle of Wight Festival this year and whilst I had my eyes closed she concocted an amazing memory smell and magically transported me back to the festival - I could actually smell my memory and it was like I was back there! Sounds bizarre, but it was definitely a highlight of the VIP party for me... I couldn't believe how she had managed to do it! At the end of the launch I bought the Marilyn hair treatment and a gorgeous exfoliating lip scrub called 'Mint Julips' which you can lick off after application (yum!). We were given a little LUSH goody bag as a 'thank you for coming' present, which had a free soap bar called 'Honey I Washed the Kids' and also a pink bath bomb. Thank you LUSH Bluewater for making my first blogger event a truly unforgettable experience. I love you! Who else has been to a launch party? Aren't they so much fun?!    

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Playboy Makeup Review

The lovely team over at Playboy Make-up were extremely kind to send me through some of their latest products for free. I received three items in my little package, which you could say are essential for pulling off one of my favourite and classic looks... the quirky pin-up girl! The packaging the lipstick and mascara came in was really shiny and pretty, so I won't be throwing those away which is a first!

The lipstick is called 'Perfect Kiss Intense Lipstick' and this was my favourite product out of the set. I am a die hard lipstick fanatic, and I loved how this shade was able to compliment most of my outfits for the start of Autumn. The shade is a coral colour with hints of pink tones. I can't say it's a summer colour (if you're looking for an explosion of colour on your lips) because it isn't very bold. However Perfect Kiss is slightly more subtle, which gives it that flexibility to wear during the cooler months ahead... pretty darn perfect if you ask me!

The first thing I noticed about 'Playful Lashes Volumizing Mascara' was the vibrant orange/pink-ish colour of the tube - I am always so fascinated with all things design and I believe Playboy put a lot of time and effort into this eye-catching range. I love that the mascara is a wonderful jet-black because it is my go-to eyelash colour and is always a safe bet for me. The mascara wand was shaped in a great way so you can create those brilliant full, voluminous lashes that every woman desires. The nail varnish I received was a beautiful, glittery blue and I bet it will look awesome when Christmas eventually rolls around.     

To create a look worthy of a pin-up legend, I had to do a little bit of research. Although I didn't have super bright, vampy red lips like Dita Von Teese (I used Playboy's Perfect Kiss of course)... I did take a look at some of her photographs for a little bit of inspiration. Pin-ups are famous for having a very pale complexion with eccentric eyes and a fabulous pout. I used Nivea's Daily Essentials BB Cream in shade Light for my base and then applied white eye-shadow from my Sunkissed Pallette to the whole lids. I then applied two different browns to the lower lid and eye crease, then blended together. Winged cat-eyes and the Playful Lashes mascara was put on last to make the eyes pop. Last but not least, I added Perfect Kiss and dabbed it onto the lips so it would last longer. 

Voila! Has anyone else tried any make-up from Playboy before? I'd love to hear your thoughts! Xx