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Project B Box 4

July 24, 2014 in Gifts, Maternity, Services

A fantastic surprise turned up recently, another gorgeous Project B pregnancy box! This one is aimed at 25-29 weeks and was hugely appreciated when it came through the door. If you missed my (Liz) post about the previous box, weeks 20-24, you can find it here.

Project B is a subscription box service for pregnant ladies. They offer 7 boxes to see you through from 12 weeks to baby’s arrival and at £14 a month they are definitely a bargain as the contents often far exceed that value.

So what did I get in my latest box?

box

St Eval Candle Company Tranquility Scented Tin. This is gorgeous and doesn’t half make you relax after a busy day. (RRP £9)

A couple of sachets of bio-oil which put off having to buy more for a couple of days more. (samples, RRP £8.99 for 60ml)

BLOOM heartwarming Rooibos Tea (pack of 20) and taste pretty good. (RRP £2.95 for 10)

Pregnancy Relaxation CD giftcard worth £10 to help you feel not quite so scared of labour!

Balm Balm Rose Geranium Face Balm which is a very luxurious moisturiser designed for everything. (RRP £6.99)

Weleda Firming Day Cream (7ml sample) (RRP £23.95 for 30ml)

 

Eisberg

 

Eisberg Alcohol-free wine (Rose). (RRP £2.75)  Truthfully I was expecting this to be awful but it was actually pretty good. Although it does definitely lack alcohol it’s about as good as a pregnant woman can hope for!

 

leaflet

And of course their fantastic leaflets with advice, ideas and general information.

This was such a brilliant box with some really high quality products. Again, I’m really impressed and feel nice and pampered!

Thank you to Project B for sending this box to Liz. All opinions expressed are completely our own and, as always, entirely honest.

Introducing Dippy Egg & A Giveaway

July 21, 2014 in Crafts, Current Giveaways, Gifts, Supporting Small Businesses

It’s no secret that I love sending cards. I love the idea that a wee envelope in the post can make another person smile, remind them how much they mean to me, or that I’ve been thinking of them. So, obviously, I love buying cards too! Well in fact I love to buy stationery in general. Is there a word for a stationery addict? It feels like there should be but I can’t find one.

Anyway…I love to discover new brands and to find stationery that’s a bit different. So when I happened upon Dippy Egg through askherfriends.com I knew I had to place an order.

dippy egg cards

My cards arrived really quickly and are just as beautiful, perhaps even more-so in real life! The quality is great, the designs are gorgeous. I love them!

DE_ID

So who are Dippy Egg? Well Dippy Egg is an illustration and graphic design studio based in Cardiff, run by Lucy Daniels. Lucy designs all of her own products and has a great variety to choose from!

Printed Cards

DE_Daughtercard

35 designs in her printed card range

Handmade Cards

Dippyegg_hm_hellocakeCard

over 200 handmade and personalised card designs

Boxed Notecards

fishboxedcards

a selection of boxed notecards

Girls, Girls, Girls cards

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12 designs in her fashion illustration style cards

 Gift Wrap & Tags

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a range of gift wrap and tags!

Lucy doesn’t restrict her talents to stationery products though; she does branding, book design, illustration commissions…the list goes on. Really she is such an incredibly talented lady! You can see examples of her work over on her website as well as her contact information if you want to get in touch with her.

Lucy has very kindly put together a surprise pack of goodies for one lucky Strupag reader to win. So if you want the chance to win this Dippy Egg Prize Pack simply complete the rafflecopter entry form below.

NOTE – There are no mandatory entries so you can do as many or as few as you like. However please do be honest, we do verify all entries!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

If you’d like to purchase some of Lucy’s cards you can do so on askherfriends.com or alternatively check out her list of stockists, which includes other online stores.

To find out more about Dippy Egg and Lucy’s work visit the Dippy Egg website.

Thank you to Dippy Egg for providing the prize for this giveaway. As always there are no affiliate links or anything like that here. All opinions expressed are entirely our own and completely honest.

Divergent by Veronica Roth

July 15, 2014 in Books, Fiction

Today’s post is a review of Divergent, the first book in the Divergent series by Veronica Roth.

Beatrice is 16. She has grown up in the Abnegation faction. One of five factions that now exist in the world. She lives with her parents and her brother Caleb in the Abnegation district of town. The Abnegation faction are selfless. They wear grey, do not look in mirrors and among other things they always put others before themselves. They live a quiet, simple life unaffected by greed, desire and lust.

Divergent

The time has come for Beatrice to be assessed. The assessment will help her to decide whether she should remain in Abnegation for the rest of her life, or if she should leave her family and everything she has ever known for one of the other, very different factions. If she chooses to leave the faction she has been born into she will bring shame upon her family. If she stays she will continue to live a bland, peaceful life. Whichever faction she chooses she must pass the initiation to become a member or find herself factionless, poor and on the streets.

We follow the story of Beatrice (Tris) as she makes these potentially life changing decisions. Will she join Candor and forever speak the truth, or Erudite and become a learned scholar? Amity would she her live on the outskirts of town farming the food that the factionless live on. While choosing Dauntless would mean she’d have to set fear aside and protect the city. It’s during this selection process that she discovers a new word, Divergent, a word she is warned to keep to herself!

Beatrice soon captures the attention of an 18 year old known as Four who is to guide her and the other initiates through their initiation. She also attracts the unwanted attention of some other less-than-kind initiates. Through it all she encounters corruption and hatred as she set out to save the world she lives in.

Truthfully it took me a while to get into this book. Perhaps because it gets such good reviews I expected to be captivated from page one. I wasn’t. However I knew that I had to keep reading, that surely so many people couldn’t be wrong about this book.

At about the quarter mark I became hooked and wanted to just keep reading and reading. Yes there are ridiculously predictable plotlines, but I can forgive them because, in general, the ideas in this book are a bit different.

So will I read book 2? Yes. I am hooked. I am hoping for some more twists and turns in the next two books though.

Will I watch the film? I won’t go out of my way to watch it. I want to finish the series with my own ideas on the characters, the city etc. I’m not fussed about seeing the Hollywood interpretation!

Have you read Divergent? What are your thoughts on it?

An electronic copy of this book was received through NetGalley. All opinions expressed are entirely our own and, as always, completely honest.

Quick and Easy Summer Daytime Look!

July 13, 2014 in Beauty, Health & Beauty, Kirsty Beauty, Make Up

It’s a sunny(ish) day and you want to go out in your new sundress and look positively radiant.  For some people this is easy- shower, natural hair, no makeup – DONE! For others (i.e moi (Kirsty)) this is not so simple plus some of us (i.e me again) just love makeup!  In these summer months, I like to play around with makeup and colours but here is a quick run-through of my basic summer go-to daytime look.  Say hello to lots of natural, creamy consistencies and bye-bye to cakey powders.  I didn’t plan this but it just so happens that most of the products I’ve chosen are from the drugstore so it’s also a cheap look.  Plus I apply the majority with my fingers so it’s quick and easy to apply and you get more time in the sunshine- Bonus!

products

Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream/Wake Me Up foundation by Rimmel – This choice always depends on how my skin is.  The BB cream is a lot less coverage but I think Maybelline have come up trumps with this one.  It’s really just like a tinted moisturiser.  It evens out my skin-tone without it looking like I’m wearing much and it has SPF 30! For days when more coverage is ESSENTIAL, I go with Wake Me Up as it is still light and gives a lovely glow to the skin.  I apply both with my fingers for an even and natural finish.

concealer

Soap and Glory Kick-Ass Concealer  – No matter how clear my skin is, I always need a good concealer due to my looovely skintone (a lovely rainbow of reds and blues and all sorts).  This little pot is truly incredible! It’s creamy at the same time as being heavy duty enough for me.  It is a ‘three-piece camouflage set’ which contains 1. a pinky/peachy undereye concealer/corrector to cover the blue bags (Yay!) 2. a yellowy toned, thicker concealer to cover up spots and redness (Boom!) and 3. A transparent powder to fix it all in place (sorted).  The powder not only sets but isn’t too matte.  I can’t recommend this product highly enough!

Stila Convertible Colour Blush – I love this blush as previously mentioned in my March Favourites.  I just like a cream blush for daytime in the summer as it’s a lot more natural and this one is perfect in both shade and consistency.

Elf Eyebrow Kit – Another staple in my makeup bag that was mentioned in my March Favourites.  The waxy colour topped with the powder leads to natural brows which stay put all day.

Topshop Glow Stick in Play Up -   I’ve had this highlighter for a couple of months and I’ve fallen in love.  As Topshop say “blend the product onto the skin for an effortless glow”. It’s a dream!

 swatches 2

Maybelline Colour Tattoo in On and On Bronze/Mac Paint Pot in Painterly -  I mix these up depending on what look I’m wanting;  Shimmer = Maybelline   Matte = Mac.  These are quick to use and easy to blend minus a brush.   They also last all day long!

 swatch1

Elf Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder – I use this mainly for the bronzer for this look but the blush is a gorgeous peachy, coral pink which I enjoy wearing too.  This is the only real powder based product I use (apart from the Soap and Glory powder) but you could replace this for a cream/gel bronzer like Chanel or Bourjois.  This is my favourite bronzer right now – it is cheap and has a little shimmer but not too much.  It’s comparable to Nars Laguna I’d say.  It’s really well pigmented but be warned, give the brush a good whack before applying it – a little goes a long way!

summer look

Additional products –

Any mascara you like.  Mine is Maybelline The Falsies.

Some form of liner – I go for Maybelline Gel Liner or Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal as they last all day long.

Something to set it if you fancy – I use Elf Mist and Set Setting spray.  Cheap and cheerful, helps to keep things in place at the same time as adding a bit of dewiness.

Quick, cheap, natural, summery makeup – DONE!

My glamourous assistant

What are your favourite products for a quick & easy summer daytime look?

Kirsty Sig

Rhino Shield Screen Protector Review

July 12, 2014 in Technology

You know that feeling when you get a new phone? You are ridiculously protective of it and the thought that something might happen to it before your contract expires is a bit scary (maybe that’s just me).  So as well as opting for a case for it I always get a screen protector. It always seems like a really good idea until I try to apply it and the screen of my phone ends up looking like bubblewrap!

Anyway I got a new phone at the start of the year and I had a good look online for screen protectors. I must admit I went for the ones that said they were easy to apply. I didn’t actually give much consideration as to whether they would actually protect the screen!

It’s not really the kind of thing you find out until it’s too late. You drop your phone, the screen smashes, erm nope that protector was rubbish! So when I was offered the chance to try the Rhino Shield screen protector I looked online at reviews and knew this was going to be a good one!

Rhinoshield Pack

Rhinoshield Screen Protector

Rhino Shield actually sent us a press pack so we could test the protector for ourselves. Complete with a metal ball bearing, ruler, solid surface, Gorilla Glass samples and Rhino Shield protector we set about testing the product.

RhinoShield Press Pack

Rhino Shield Press Pack

 

press kit

Rhino Shield Press Pack Contents

 

Since we are entirely useless at vlog style posts here is a link to a couple of lab tests that demonstrate the Rhino Shield in action. We did a press-pack variation of this and got the same results…

press pack smash

glass screen, no Rhino Shield protector

 

Without protection the glass smashed. With protection, the glass was fine, perfect, not a mark. In the excitement I forgot to take a photo, but if you check out the video you will see for yourselves. The Rhino Shield is strong!

Having ascertained that this protector is, well, amazing. I decided to chuck out my old protector and apply this new one.  Honestly, I was dreading this. I HATE doing this kind of thing. However Rhino Shield send you everything you need to make sure you apply the protector perfectly!

rhinoshield

Rhino Shield comes with everything you need to apply the protector

 

To tell you the truth when I opened the packet and saw all the accessories I was still skeptical. Aside from the fact that you don’t want bubbles/trapped dust on your screen there is always that nagging feeling of “I paid £X for this, I better not mess it up!” Or is that just me?

This was incredibly straight forward to apply. For the first time ever my screen protector is flawless! As long as you follow the instructions and take your time using the dust removal stickers etc you should get the same result.

Honestly, I am hugely impressed with this. Not only does it look flawless on my phone, it also looks clean, clear and I know that it works!

It’s a fortnight since I applied the protector and it still looks perfect. I genuinely cannot fault this product.

The Rhino Shield is available to buy online and can be shipped worldwide. It’s available for a variety of phone makes and models. The iPhone one I received retails for $24.99. When you consider the price of that compared to the price of replacing a broken screen I’d say it is definitely worth the money.

Thank you to Rhino Shield for providing the sample as well as the press kit so we could try the product out for ourselves. All opinions expressed are entirely our own and completely honest. As always, there are no affiliate links in this post.