Zoella Beauty Fizz Bar

 zoella-beauty

Irish fans of Youtuber sensation Zoe Sugg are in luck because the Zoella beauty range has come to Penney’s!

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I was recently in the Mary Street store in Dublin on a typically hectic Saturday afternoon when I came across the stand. There was next to nothing left at this stage but happily one of the few items remaining was a fizz bar.

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I’d already seen the full range online and to me, the fizz bar was the most interesting looking product so I grabbed it as soon as I saw it!

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It’s a chunky solid bar consisting of 8 squares. You drop 1-2 squares in to warm running water and watch it fizz!

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It dissolves quickly, turning the water a cloudy shade of white. It instantly has a relaxing and soothing feel to it.

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I have to say; I was so surprised with its scent.  I expected it to be really sweet but it’s not at all. I find that it has a pleasantly musky and powdery smell instead. Zoe’s audience seems to be largely teenagers but I think this product could appeal to any age.

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The packaging is very pretty and cute and girly. I really think this would be an especially lovely item to add to a gift basket for someone’s birthday. I quite like it as a product although I don’t think it’s as interesting as a Lush bath bomb. It’s a good option if you want something simple but still indulgent.

The fizz bar retails at €6 and you could get at least 4 baths out of it so it’s not bad value — it’s actually cheaper to buy it in Penney’s than it is to buy it online. I’ve yet to try any of the other products in the range. If you’ve used them; leave a comment below as I’d love to hear what they’re like!

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Paddy’s Day Pudding

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I can never resist making an appropriately themed dessert for every occasion! Last year it was green and gold cupcakes; the year before it was tricolour trifles. This year, I’ve created a “Paddy’s Day Pudding” which is in fact a peppermint and white chocolate mousse coloured a gorgeous shade of green.

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This recipe uses raw eggs so it may not suitable for certain people including pregnant ladies and little children. I always buy free-range eggs anyway but for this recipe, I go with organic just to be sure! As you only need a few ingredients here, I’d also say try get the best quality of everything — it’ll be so worth it for the flavour!

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This is a deliciously creamy and light-as-air dessert. It’s pleasantly sweet and refreshing and so perfect after a heavy meal. This recipe yields 4 generous portions or 6-8 smaller servings.

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Ingredients:

200g good quality white chocolate
4 good quality eggs, separated
250ml fresh cream
1 tsp. peppermint extract
1 tsp. green food colouring

Method:

Break the chocolate in to small pieces in to a heatproof bowl. Sit the bowl over a pan of simmering water on a medium heat and allow the chocolate to slowly melt, stirring occasionally. When it’s ready, set the bowl aside to allow it to cool slightly.

In in a clean and dry bowl; whip the 4 egg whites until soft peaks form.

In a separate bowl, lightly beat the cream and peppermint extract together.

Whisk the 4 egg yolks in to the melted white chocolate until thoroughly combined. Add this mixture and the green food colouring to the mint cream and stir. Then, fold in the egg whites.

Divide the mixture evenly in to ramekins or glasses and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour.

Ideally serve within 24 hours. For a cute finishing touch; add some coloured sugar, chocolate curls or fresh fruit!

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Lush Secret Garden

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I was in Lush (again!) over the weekend and had myself a mini splurge! I picked up an assortment of bath bombs and the first one I decided to try was called Secret Garden.

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As soon as you pop this in the bath, streaks of pink and yellow start to emerge as the water foams and slowly turns a deep shade of green. You’ll also find a few flower petals hidden within!

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With ingredients including sweet wild orange and rosewood oils; this has a sweet but subtle floral scent. I did find that this particular bath bomb didn’t make my skin feel as soft as other Lush bath bombs — possibly because it’s one of the cheaper bath bombs in the shop.

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The overall effect is very good though — the gorgeous green colour also seems particularly appropriate for St. Patrick’s Day! This is a limited edition bath bomb, currently available in stores and online now.

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Afternoon Tea at The Gresham Hotel

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I’ve been wanting to have afternoon tea for the longest time — the kind of afternoon tea that’s served in a beautiful hotel where you can just relax and indulge in the loveliest surroundings…Well, that finally happened this weekend!

My sister and I decided to treat our mum for Mother’s Day. We got our nails done (for free, as it turned out — thanks to the Jervis Shopping Centre!), went shopping and then stopped by the Gresham Hotel mid-afternoon. L and I stayed there for a night back in January and loved it so I was looking forward to a little return!

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sandwiches included tomato and mozzarella, smoked salmon on Guinness bread and turkey and cranberry

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treats in the form of mini scones with strawberry jam and chantilly cream, lemon drizzle and madeira cake

afternoon-tea-desserts

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desserts such as fruit tartlets, Eton Mess and chocolate mousse (served in the cutest edible mini teacup!)

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Not only was all the food absolutely delicious and beautifully presented; the service was impeccable too. Really, the staff were so friendly that we immediately felt welcome. There was a bit of a wait which was understandable considering the time but we were very well looked after. It was such a fantastic experience. I think everyone needs to try afternoon tea at least once in their lifetime and if you’re in Dublin; I can highly recommend the Gresham Hotel.

L’Oreal Collection Exclusive By Blake

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Let me start by saying; I am not a lipstick person at all. I have a dozen glosses and balms but up until recently, I don’t think I’d ever even bought a lipstick before. I owned a few that came as part of various little sets but that was about it.

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For a change, I’ve been wanting to pick one up for myself for a while now. I saw this particular lipstick was on special offer for €7.99 in a local pharmacy so I just went with the first colour I saw that I liked. Of course, it only occurred to me after that there is a specific reason why each lipstick is named after a different L’Oreal ambassador — that the different shades are designed to suit different looks.

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As it turned out, I unwittingly chose the lipstick that is designed for pale blue-eyed blondes when in fact I’m a naturally tanned brunette…! I was annoyed at first but then I just figured, it’s still a gorgeous red colour — there’s no reason I can’t wear it!

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When I first applied it, I instantly loved the rich and vibrant shade. It feels creamy and moisturising and has a nice matte finish. Eva Longoria’s shade might suit me a bit more but I still like the look of this.

I initially thought it wasn’t very long lasting. The first couple of times that I slicked some on; it started to wear off within an hour. I then started to layer it a bit and apply it with a slightly heavier hand. Now the colour wearing off is a completely non-existent problem — in fact, I fell asleep with this on once and when I woke the next morning, my lips were still a very deep red! Overall, I’m pretty happy with this lipstick — I might even try Eva’s shade some time soon to see how they compare!

Spring Fever

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Today felt so spring-like! Bright, fresh and even a little bit warm; it’s made me really excited for the months ahead. There’s so much to look forward to and celebrate; especially with Mother’s Day this weekend and St. Patrick’s Day next Tuesday. Not to mention, Easter is just around the corner too!

I must admit though; as happy as I am to embrace this season; I can’t help looking forward to the next one just as much. I nearly feel like one of the best things about spring is making plans for the summer! We already have tickets to different gigs and events over these months but what I’m most excited about is our trip away.

We’ve been wanting to go to London for ages now (it’s been years since I was there and L has never been at all!) and we finally booked it over the weekend! We’ve sorted out flights and found ourselves a beautiful-looking hotel in a great location. I can’t wait to get back to this incredible city; to do some exploring and maybe a little bit of shopping…! I always think it’s so important to have something to look forward to — if you’re making any exciting plans, I’d love to hear about them!

Homemade Nutella Milkshakes

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Homemade milkshakes are dangerously easy to make! You just need a base of milk and ice-cream and you’re good to go. The possibilities are endless and I love to experiment with different flavours — although sometimes it’s good to keep it simple.

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A few spoonfuls of Nutella swirled in to ice-cold milk and vanilla ice-cream makes for one pretty amazing treat. You get these delicious chocolate and hazelnut flavours in a cool and creamy form. It’s indulgent and takes less than ten minutes to throw together. Definitely worth trying when you’re in the mood for something fun and sweet!

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nutella-ice

  • Leave the ice-cream to sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes until it’s slightly softened.
  • Scoop some Nutella in a small bowl or cup and blast in the microwave for 30 seconds. You don’t have to be too specific here but I used 60g.
  • Transfer the ice-cream to a medium-sized bowl. I used around 400ml. Stir the melted Nutella through the ice-cream.
  • Pour 400 ml of milk in to a blender/smoothie maker. Use a little less milk if you prefer a thicker shake. Top with the Nutella ice-cream. Blitz for short bursts until you have a smooth and creamy drink. Serve immediately and enjoy!

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