Cruelty Free Vegan Brushes by Six Plus

Cruelty Free Vegan Brushes by Six Plus

I recently treated myself to this lovely set of brushes chosen I have to admit for how pretty they would look ok my dressing table – don’t they look great in their matching pots. What I didn’t realise till they arrived is that the pots attach to each other magnetically creating a perfect little travel care!!!

I was also very keen to buy synthetic bristles as I am on a journey towards being totally cruelty free in my beauty routine.

Given their budget price they are a lot kinder on the bank balance too which is always a bonus!!! My Maths isn’t great but I worked out that each brush costs about £2 with the storage containers and travel case included as a freebie – that’s SUCH A BARGAIN!!!!

But what about performance? Let’s face it they wouldn’t be a bargain if the quality wasn’t there ! But happily I can confirm that it really really is ! I have really enjoyed using these brushes, they apply and blend effortlessly making me look like I have better makeup skills than I do.

So would I recommend these brushes ? Yes I absolutely would and without mentioning the dreaded ‘C’ word, they would make a great gift for the makeup lover in your life!

Aisling Organics – Makeup That Actually WORKS

I love makeup – like really, really love it. I love buying it, applying it and I love how it makes me feel when I am wearing it. Recently though I have become more conscious about what I’m buying and what I’m putting on my skin – and it’s not always so pretty!

So I’ve been trying to clean up my skincare and makeup faves and cut out some of the nasties.

Aisling Organics is one of the brands I have been trying and I am genuinely very impressed. Their products are handcrafted using top quality ingredients with no parabens, fragrances, tars, talcs or any of the other horrors that lurk in the glossy packaging of many of the better known brands.

But do they work?

Yes they do, brilliantly!!!

I tried their Bali Bronze and Sienna cheek tints which I wore together to give a gently sculpted but fresh, natural look to my cheeks. I was really impressed by the formulation, so light and comfortable to wear but with good pigmentation that lasted all day/

I also tried their lipstick in Hibiscus a lovely pinky nude that was so creamy that I really felt it was nourishing my lips. Lovely n this miserable weather.

I am really keen to try the foundation but it’s always hard to get the colour right online. But don’t worry, Aisling has you covered, they have little sample sets they send out FREE for you to colour match yourself before you order. Genius!!!

Finally Aisling Organics are of course vegan, cruelty free and gluten free with a plastic neutral footprint.

So if you like me are interested in cleaning up your beauty routine but without sacrificing the quality of the products you are using, then check out Aisling Organics. – and for a bit of a bargain use the code julieellen5!

The Perfect Little Purse

The Perfect Little Purse

I recently resolved to ditch black and embrace a bit of colour into my life and if you know me you will know that when I decide to do something, I do it wholeheartedly.

I have brightened my hair colour, bought a LOT of new clothes and when I saw a collection of brightly coloured leather goods by Village Leathers on Instagram, i couldn’t hit the like button fast enough.

Imagine how excited I was when I got a DM the next day offering me the chance to choose a piece from the collection. I immediately found their website and I spent a very happy hour swooning over the luxury leather products.

Village Leathers make pieces for men and women offering both bespoke items and a large variety of ready made pieces from belts to braces, from bags to purses and all sorts of other leather goods large and small. They are an independent family business, started in 1974 with a store in Covent Garden and a thriving business online. The company are proud of the fact that their pieces are handmade in London by craftsmen and women using leather of the highest quality. What really makes them stand out though is that they offer luxury leather for budget prices.

There were so many lovely pieces that it wasn’t easy to make a choice but I eventually decided to go for this little coin purse in tangerine.

And isn’t she a beauty?

I was so impressed when it arrived. The packaging was beautiful, this would be a fabulous present – anyone would be delighted to receive any of the products as.a gift. The quality was outstanding, very reminiscent of another luxury leather goods brand which also prides itself on being quintestentially British but charges ten times more for their products. And the design was fantastic, it’s called a coin purse but it has been the only purse I have been using since I got it. I put my cards in the back section and any cash I am carrying at the front and that has been working perfectly for me. I have had it for about 6 weeks now and I love it.

I really could not recommend Village Leathers more highly and this will certainly not be the last order I make. I have my eyes on one of their beautiful clutch bags next which are priced at just £25! For a top quality leather bag with style that is an incredible price.

Check them out for yourself and let me know what you think.

My Experience With Fillers

I really hope you aren’t reading this before breakfast – if so then I apologise for the unfiltered closeups but when talking about fillers it’s best to show the plain unvarnished truth I think. Read all about it below.

Why Did I Decide to get Fillers?

My first foray into injectables did not go well. I tried botox about 5 years ago but really did not like the ‘SPOCK’ look it left me with so I let it wear off. I have had lip fillers a couple of times too and really liked the youthful effect of a plumper pout but again never really kept it up.

I have recently lost quite a lot of weight though, five stones to be precise and although I was really enjoying my new slimmer body, I was not so keen on the effect it had on my face. Top left is me a year before losing the weight, bottom left was me a week ago.

Obviously none of these photos look great, I am a 55 year old woman who loves the sun and my skin reflects that, but I think you can clearly see in the before photograph, the impact of my fat loss – my hereditary eye bags are exaggerated, my cheeks have a gaunt sunken look and well, just look at those jowls. Not my best look.

Although I wasn’t happy with the way my face now looked, I didn’t have the money for a facelift and it really never occurred to me that there were other options out there.

Then along came Doctor Darren.

Darren McKeown is a bit of a celeb in Scotland. In his own words his passion is to help men and women feel better about themselves through the way that they look. He claims to prescribe ‘The Power to be Confident’ whether that be by using a particular product, or by having a surgical or non surgical treatment.

I first encountered him directly though when I saw him post on Instagram that he was looking for models willing to allow a doctor being trained in aesthetic medicine to perform treatments on them and use their before and after photographs in their portfolios. Knowing the reputation of the clinic I did not hesitate to send Dr Darren a ‘warts and all’ photo with a heartfelt plea for him to ‘choose me’! You cannot imagine my delight when I got a message confirming I was one of a chosen few.

On the day I turned up at the clinic and was blown away by it. It reminded me more of an upmarket Spa than a doctor’s surgery. Think low lighting, squashy sofas, designer coffee table books and chill out tunes on the iPod!

Before my treatment I was taken into a room and photographs taken of my face from all angles. I then was taken into the treatment room where I was met by the lovely doctor and her trainer. Unfortunately I was so excited I missed their names but if by chance they are reading this, they will know who they are.

I was greeted so warmly that I genuinely did not suffer any nerves at all. I had temporary dermal filler injected into my cheekbone area to add back some of the fullness I had lost while losing weight. I also had fuller injected around my jaw to lift the jowls formed as the skin sagged. The treatment obviously took a little longer than usual as the trainer talked the doctor through what she was doing but I can honestly say that the discomfort was on a par with some basic dental work.

And just look at the results.

The picture on the right is unfiltered and shows my 55 year old face with no makeup. Just look at the difference from my before at bottom left. To be fair the lighting is very bad in the before photograph and much better in the after but none of that would account from the very visible improvements to my eye bags, the shape of my cheeks and my jawline. To say I am thrilled would be an understatement.

I have suffered very little bruising but have noticed some swelling – nothing noticeable though.

Here is a photo of me with makeup on 24 hours after the treatment. Still no editing or filters though. What a difference huh?

Would I do it again ? Definately – next on my wish list is a little filler in my temples to balance my face shape and some tear trough filler around my hereditary eye bags.

Was it worth it ? Well I did not pay for this treatment but dermal filler is temporary which is quite reassuring but does mean that in about 2 years time the filler will need to be re-done. When it does I will absolutely pay to have it redone.

Would I go back to Dr Darren ? Genuinely I would not go anywhere else – when it’s your face you are messing with, it’s important to have the confidence that the people treating you are the experts in their field and that’s what you get with Dr Darren McKeown and his staff.

If you are interested in looking the very best version of you then I highly recommend you go to see Dr Darren at his clinic at 202 West George Street, Glasgow.

If you have any more questions though don’t hesitate to ask!