Collective Hairdressing – another award winning salon review

Well, another day, another award winning Salon visit!

Everyone knows their hair is their crown and glory and I’m always nervous visiting different salons to review, however, I need not have been worried when visiting Collective Hairdressing smack bang in the middle of Newcastle town centre. They are the most reviewed salon in the North East of England due to their unique five step consultation. They listen, advise and educate all clients in the maintenance of their hair. Currently ranked 1st out of 7,355 UK salons as of the 23rd of September 2016. Winners in the English Hair & Beauty Awards 2015 for the Team Service of the Year. As of the 18th of February, finalists in the English Hair & Beauty Awards 2016 for not only Hair Salon of the Year 2016 but also Team Service of the Year 2016. (seriously check these guys out!)

Before my visit, I had a skin test which is most important when going for a colour. The moment I met Paul the owner, I felt immediately relaxed. He is fun, happy and more importantly has years and years of experience and really knows what he is talking about.

Never have I ever had such an in-depth consultation, which consisted of colour matching to my skin tone (we discovered I was cool tones), a discussion on what I wanted to achieve, an in-depth explanation of the products we were going to use and why and the current condition of my hair.

After explaining I wanted a deeper darker colour as I felt I was too light, Paul explained just by going cooler on the same level will achieve this. I also wanted slices of a vibrant contrasting caramel colour, Paul explained this is known as strobing and picked the perfect colour to marry with the dark ash tone. We then discussed the length. My hair was long but quite heat damaged on the ends, I went in not wanting to lose any length but I trusted Paul and understood that losing some of the length will not only make my hair more healthy but would also give me the body that my crazy thick, naturally curly hair needs.

So after The 30 mins consulting Paul was ready to get to work!

Paul started by cutting off the length (he would then finish my cut later). The lightened slices were added and then my all over dark brown colour. This was left to develop while I was looked after with offers of refreshments. The salon has a lovely feel, Paul makes sure your involved in any conversation and all clients speak with each other which is lovely.

The developing time was up and I had a toner applied to my lightened slices of hair at the basin. This is where the magic happens, not only with the toner but with the products used in salon. Collective hairdressing use Loreal Pro Fibre and this was used on my hair when shampooing and conditioning. I did not have the smart bond treatment we hear so much about when colouring, which keeps the condition of the hair throughout, however, I did get introduced to the pro fibre ”restore” range and have since been using this range at home with amazing results. I was very concerned how my hair would be after with the bleaching, but a combination of a good cut and using the right products, my hair is looking and feeling fantastic.

Once toned and washed Paul gave me an amazing blow dry so he could finish the cut. The cut was important for my hair type, curly hair with body needs cut correctly and Paul explained all this. He also wanted me to see my look curly so finished off by curling it for me.

I was over the moon with the results, my new look is much more on trend and my hair looks and feels amazing. I would highly recommend this salon ladies and if your a fan of Loreal products, they sell them all!

 

Big thanks to Paul and all the staff at collective hairdressing for my new look!

To book an appointment give them a call on 0191 222 1311 or book online via Collective Hairdressing.

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Skinny Tan Review

 

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It makes me giggle as I write this review and think about my friend asking if I am skinnier!! Credit where it is due the name is very catchy and may lead people to believe that with a stroke of this tan you lose 5lbs. Sorry to dash your dreams but this is not the case, however what it does do as a fake tan is make you appear thinner and also helps mask any skin imperfections.

Skinny Tan is the first self-tanner that combines a natural tanning active with naturally derived skin smoothing actives to tan, contour and reduce the visible appearance of cellulite!

I was sent the tanning mitt and the Dark tanning mousse that seems to sell out as soon as it comes into stock so I knew I was onto a winner. As we all know I am a tanning connoisseur. After my skin cancer in 2015 I stay out of the sun and rely on fake tans to give me that bronzed look all year round that I love. When I have a tan I feel better and will even happily walk round and video blog without any make up on (just contour your face with your tan ladies). Fake tans have such a bad stigma because they used to be terrible but now tans have really really improved and I must say skinny tan is now up there on my favourite fake tan list!!!

I opened the mitt ready for the evening tanning ritual and I have to say that the mitt alone screams quality. It is thick, double sided and has like a velvet finish. I have had mitts before where the tan seeps through and then stains the hands but you don’t get this with the skinny tan mitt and this mitt will last you a very long time. You can wash and reuse it which is perfect. After giving the mousse a shake I pumped a blob onto the mitt and had a smell. It was a pleasant coconut smell which continued onto the skin once applied. The guide colour was good so you knew where you had applied the tan and it went on effortlessly and streak free, my 9 year old even managed to do my back.

Desperate to see the finished result I jumped in the shower the next morning and watched all the guide colour rinse away only to be left with a gorgeous deep bronzed glow. The tan was dark as I like it, looked like a proper sun tan, streak free and there was no unpleasant smell. Here is me all ready for filming the next day with my skinny tan!

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This is the tan 5 days later and as you can see there is no patchiness where the tan starts to fade and I still have amazing colour. Even look at the knees where colour can build or fade terribly, after 5 days skinny tan still looks flawless. I can get irritated by tan too and itch but as this is made with naturally derived tanning actives I have not experienced any problems.

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Skinny tan is given the big thumbs up from Tried and Tested and I just cant believe I didn’t try it sooner. To order yours and check out all the products they have to offer pop over to their website HERE

 

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Irresistible Me Flat Iron ( curly hair )

A couple of weeks ago I posted a blog (check it out) about these amazing hair straighteners and promised to share with you all a different look created with the same tool.

 

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20161029_112614  20161029_115742 As you can see I have very long thick hair but that was no challenge for these flat irons.  These are beveled perfectly to create amazing curls and because you can adjust the heat setting there is no damage to the hair. Check out this video on You Tube for a tutorial on how to create the perfect curl.

If you want to purchase them yourself then visit here, they cost $149 which is around £122 but if you sign up on the website you get an extra 20% off!

 

 

 

 

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Irresistible Me Flat Iron

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Living in a house full of boys there is nothing I love more than taking myself off for a little ”me” time and ”me” time for me is what I call ”faffing”. Faffing with make-up, faffing with hair, I just love faffing!!! My popular Facebook group tried and tested came about after a night of ”faffing” creating hair styles with a new hair tool i’d purchased, so you can imagine my delight when I was sent this new generation of flat iron from irresistible me.

They were delivered within a couple of weeks and packaged well, the box is stylish and would make a great gift. The flat iron is bright red in colour and lights up with led lights when in use. It has an american 2 prong plug so you will need to grab yourself an adapter. I got mine from the pound shop. All the functions listed on the box looked impressive so I was very keen to give them a blast

  • a 360° mobile cord that swivels around following your every move
  • a thumb print and cool tips for a steady grip and to avoid burning your fingers
  • all buttons are on the inside so you don’t accidentally change the settings
  • shuts down automatically in 30 minutes
  • gets hot (450F/230C) really fast, in up to 15 seconds
  • intelligent heat display that lets you see the temperature all the time
  • it is super light and comes in a beautifully designed box with magnetic closing that you can use to store it
  • it automatically changes the temperature display to Celsius or Fahrenheit, depending on the supplied voltage, making it perfect for travelling
  • the 1” floating plate self-adjusts, eliminating any pressure points, so that the iron can work through your hair smoothly without pulling

Warranty: 1 year guarantee

I have very thick naturally curly hair so it takes a good flat iron to tame it. The good thing about these is the variable temperature control so you can have the cooler setting for thinner or damaged hair, however I ramped them up to 230 oC because my hair needs heat!!!. They have a great clamp on the hair but also glide effortlessly with no snagging. They ironed out my hair in no time and i’m sure you will agree that the result is impressive.

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Stay tuned in to my blog for more styles with this fantastic flat iron  and if you want to purchase them yourself then visit here, they cost $149 which is around £122 but if you sign up on the website you get an extra 20% off!

 

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Benito Bloggers Event – Debenhams Eldon Square

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So last night I was invited along to a blogging event for Benito in Debenhams, Eldon Square.

Who is Benito?

”Ahh it all happened so quickly…

He’s always stared into the eyes of fellow beings that passed his way, with a strong sense of admiration. The windows to the soul often shone with beauty but the brows and lashes, not quite so!

In a flashtastic moment he knew what had to be done! He must provide perfect brows and lashes for all… But how?

With a passion to trim, tint, tweak and tame the world’s unkempt calamities this fashionista and renowned beauty tourist travelled the cultural corners and brought to these naïve shores the simplest, quirkiest and most perfectifying skill of threading!

Great brows for all!

Benito designed, devised and pioneered the brow bar concept and now loves to shout from the highest vistas all about the Nation’s number one Brow Bar. With an ever increasing Nationwide coverage of over 30 Brow Bars and counting, all offering an express walk in WOW service of choice and convenience!”

They offer high definition brows, tinting, waxing, threading, gents brow management, lash extensions and packages. I had my brows threaded last night and I love them. I thought my brows were not too bad until I saw the end result. Check out the picture below where I have one brow done and one untouched. I look like I’ve had a stroke down one side of my face. The brow that has been threaded has completely lifted the appearance of one side. Brows frame the face and a good brow makes a HUGE difference. If there is one thing I cant live without,its good brows!

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There is a protocol all Benito therapists follow so you receive the same great service at each and every brow bar. Check out the end result. The threading is so precise and lasts so much longer than your average wax. Threading can grab the tiny hairs that wax cant too.

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Benito treated us to some fizz, gorgeous branded cupcakes and a fabulous goodie bag full of branded goodies of their staple orange colour.

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Benito currently have a half price offer on for semi perm eyelash extensions throughout September

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Eyebrow threading costs just £13.00. I will be back to get my brows tinted and will certainly return for threading in the future.

Thanks so much Benito for inviting me and making my brows ”on fleek”

Find your nearest Brow Bar HERE

 

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The Garage Spa Visit – County Durham

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On Monday I was invited along to the Garage Spa located near Barnard Castle, Co. Durham for a morning pamper session. As if I was going to refuse a morning of pure relaxation so of course I jumped at the chance. I have seen this spa mentioned many times on Tried and Tested with glowing reviews so I was very excited.

Firstly the area is stunning, lots of green surroundings and it was a red hot day. I noticed a large hotel ‘’The Morrit’’ beside the spa and did not realise that later this would be where I would dine for lunch.

 

‘’Adjoining the historic Morritt Country House Hotel, The Garage is a building with a fascinating past, transformed from an ancient stopping station into a first-class spa.

Here you’ll find everything you expect from a modern spa and more. Created with imagination and luxurious rural simplicity, sumptuous decor awash with warm natural stone and timber welcomes you like an old friend.

The Garage is no ordinary spa. Want your nails done? Step into the paint shop. Not firing on all cylinders? A full body MOT is just the ticket. Need to put on the brakes after exploring the stunning Teesdale countryside? Make The Garage your destination.

We’ve put a unique and luxurious spa on the map and look forward to welcoming you to our one-of-a-kind facilities and gorgeous treatments.’’

 

On arrival I was greeted by two lovely smiley therapists who gave me a medical form to fill in, asked if I would like to book any additional treatments as they had availability and gave me a menu to pick my two course lunch which was either a starter and a main or a main and a dessert. I was very impressed by the menu, true restaurant standard food and lots to choose from.

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After I had filled in my forms and picked my lunch I was shown to the changing area and given a fluffy robe, towel and flip flops to wear. The changing areas have individual units which include a toilet, basin and shower which was a nice touch and they were fitted to a very high standard, I loved the tiles and huge shower head. It did feel like my own private bathroom. Shampoo and Conditioner was supplied, however there was no body wash and my hand wash had ran out on the basin so I had to wash with shampoo.

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Once I was changed into my robe I was given a guided tour of the spa which consisted of

Steam Room

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Salt Room

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Jacuzzi with separate plunge pool and a separate warm pool

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Outdoor Gardens, which if you get the weather like I did are just amazing to relax in. I loved the swing seats

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Outdoor Sauna

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Outdoor rustic Jacuzzi bath

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Many different fancy showers around that all looked different so I assume do different things and cold bucket dunkers which would be great fun if with friends

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Many treatments rooms including a mud treatment room (you can buy the mud to massage all over the body, chill in the room letting it work its magic and then wash it off) the floatation bed room (ill come to this treatment later) then upstairs they have a couples treatment room which has its own private balcony with a copper bath on the balcony and more treatment rooms.

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I had a go of everything apart from the mud and didn’t have a treatment although I wish I had now.

I must admit I loved the outdoor space especially as the weather was so good and it was so peaceful.

I was treat to a 15 minute dry floatation treatment which is a like a water bed that you lie on and your submerged down into warm water. Imagine being on a lilo in a hot bath but actually being submerged without getting wet. The bed sort of hugs you tight and you just float on warm water. I did lie there thinking that it would be great it had settings that would create a slight wave so you felt you were at sea but it was very relaxing all the same.

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After the floatation treatment I was peckish. I’d had no breakfast so went to the reception area which has a beautiful lounge and ordered tea and a teacake. I sat and enjoyed this in my robe catching up on emails. Once finished I went back to make the most of the facilities.

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At 12.30pm I decided to go and get changed ready for lunch at 1pm. I sat in the sun outside the spa and a lovely girl from the hotel came and got me and escorted me to the restaurant in the hotel. My meal was fantastic, could not fault it. As was the service, I had corn fed chicken and a strawberry shortcake. It was divine and from what I saw of the hotel it too was beautiful.

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After lunch it was time to head home. I really enjoyed my time at the Garage Spa, its quirky and different to the norm which I like. I will definitely return with friends in the future and make sure I have a treatment.

Don’t worry I did not leave without securing all my readers an exclusive discount and I have a cracking offer for you all subject to availability so don’t miss it!

It is the Country Lane Package which consists of;

Full day Spa use (9am-5pm)

2 course lunch from our bar and bistro menu

Use of our fluffy robes, towel and flip flops

Mud Pit treatment

55 minute Classic Facial or 55 minute Deep Relaxing Massage.

Usual Price;

Monday- Friday £109.00 per person – 20% off = £87.20

Friday – Sunday £149.00 per person – 20% off = £119.20

 

This offer will be subject to availability so book ASAP and make sure you quote ”Tried and Tested” to get the discount. 

Tel: 01833 863100

Email: service@thegaragespa.co.uk

 

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Rockliffe Hall Spa – County Durham

I am in the process of visiting some of the North Easts top spa’s and sharing my experience with you all to help you decide where you would prefer to have your very own Spa break, after many requests off ladies to find good spa deals on Tried and Tested.

I was delighted when Rockliffe Hall Hotel invited me along to try out their spa including the Spa Garden experience and I want to share with you all my experience.

”A hidden gem in the North East of England, Rockliffe Hall is a five star luxury golf and spa hotel offering an award-winning spa, an 18 hole championship golf course and a wide range of restaurant options which cater for all palates and purse strings.

Whether you are looking for a romantic break, somewhere to celebrate a special occasion, a unique wedding venue or a place to do business, this world-class resort is a memorable destination.
Set in the quiet village of Hurworth, on the edge of the County Durham and North Yorkshire border, Rockliffe’s location is perfect for discovering the treasures of Durham city, the drama of the North East coastline and the rugged beauty of the North Yorkshire moors.

Or, with five star leisure facilities at your fingertips, forget the outside world and enjoy everything that this country retreat has to offer. Relax or be active, celebrate or focus on business, the choice is yours and the pleasure is all ours.”

After around an hours drive from my home town of Consett, I arrived for an afternoon Spa and Garden Spa experience. Let me start by saying ”WOW” this hotel is exquisite and the views breath taking. Parking was easy and Claudia gave me a little tour of the hotel, telling me about their flagship 3AA rosette Orangery restaurant, set in the charming 18th century Old Hall.

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After my mini tour I headed to the spa where I was given a complimentary robe, slippers and guided to the changing rooms to be shown how to use the lockers. My Garden Spa experience was booked for 3.30pm for 2 hours so I had around an hour to try squeeze in a go of everything. As I got changed I noticed makeup remover, toner, cotton wool, hair products etc available to use. This was a great touch, as I was conscious of having make up on coming straight from work, and didn’t really want to sit in a sauna with it melting off my face so I was able to remove it before .

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Please ask a member of staff for a tour. I sat for around 10 minutes not realising there was a Hydrotherapy Suite. There are plenty of staff available to help, a friendly girl gave me a tour of all the Spa areas and she was very informative. Complimentary fruit and water are freely available and you can order a range of other drinks including smoothies and alcohol at the spa bar area.

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This is a Spa where you do not necessarily have to book for a treatment as there is so much to do. I was not booked for a treatment and I struggled to fit it all in on an afternoon. I started in the Tropicarium, much more comfortable than a sauna as it is not as hot.

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I looked in the igloo but could not bring myself to sit in it. I just hate the cold. It was however, very pretty and I understand the need to close the pores but I didn’t fancy rubbing ice all over my body ha ha .

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Next I had 5 minutes in the Tepidarium relaxing on the heated beds. Wishing I had more time, but wanting to have a go of everything I seized the moment to go into the hydro pool while it was in full flow. The jets massage within the warm pool and it was one of my favorite experiences of the main spa whilst here.

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Not wanting to leave the feet out, I then had a go of the Foot spa. One of the 1st foot spas I’ve seen within a spa.

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It was nearly time for my slot for the Spa garden but 1st I wanted to pop in the outdoor hot tub. There was a lovely outdoor seating area for warm sunny days and lovely views.

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THE SPA GARDEN

”A special spa experience, blending indoors and outdoors for when you need an extra touch of tranquillity. Adjacent to the current spa, the Spa Garden offers an enhanced spa experience.

Indoors, be served complimentary refreshments by your own personal spa concierge while enjoying a traditional glass-fronted sauna, fire pit, water feature and heated relaxation loungers.

While outdoors offers two hot pools including an infinity edge experience pool with massage features and a warm Jacuzzi, decking and lounging areas as well as landscaped gardens with views across Rockliffe Hall’s grounds.

This versatile space is excellent to add on as an extra to your spa day or spa break or can be hired on an exclusive use basis- perfect for a memorable celebration or for the ultimate indulgence.”

The spa garden is a add on from £30 per person for a additional bit of pampering. With its stunning views, outdoor seating, glass fronted sauna to take in those views and the heated beds you really are spoilt.

After a guided tour, I grabbed myself a complimentary coffee, some fruit and nut mix and took to the heated bed to soak up the surroundings. The views are incredible.

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After coffee, it was time for a dip in the infinity edge pool ”Soak in the 365 acre estate in the warm outdoor pool whilst experiencing different pressures of hydrotherapy massage.” It really is a nice experience being outdoors soaking in the incredible view within a warm pool listening to the birds. The weather was cloudy but I can imagine this on a warm summers day to be extremely popular especially with all the outdoor space to relax too. After a good 15 minutes in the pool I took to the sauna. Even in the sauna you still have the amazing views as it is glass fronted. The sauna is a great place to dry off and warm up after a dip in the pool. Whilst in the sauna I was pondering whether to cut my garden spa short to experience what I had missed in the main spa for purpose of the review. I decided to have another coffee but then move back into the main spa area after thoroughly enjoying my time here. I was told I could return to the Spa Garden within my time frame if I so wanted.

 

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Once back in the main spa I lay my belongings down and headed to the Caldarium which is a steam room with aromatic oils. It feels great for the skin and stimulates the senses. There is also a Roman Sauna but i’m not a fan as I find them too hot. It would have been great to get pictures inside all these units but as soon as you take a camera in they steam up instantly unfortunately. Leaves you all a surprise if you choose to visit.

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Last but not least I decided to do a few lengths as my time was nearly up having to leave the spa by 6pm, and I wanted to have a sneak peek at the gym. The pool is a nice size and great for swimming. I only did 10 lengths but its better than none I suppose.

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Feeling relaxed and shattered I was in no way ready to do a gym session but wanted to go take a look because a lot of people don’t realise that gym is included within your stay or spa visit. Some people don’t step foot in the gym as they purely go to relax but I generally like to try them out. Usually they are very impressive in these top spa’s and Rockliffe gym did not disappoint. Full of top of the range equipment this gym also offers classes in the studio.

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They have an impressive easy key system to record your workouts and offer incentives to clients who reach their goal set for them. This is a great idea and keeps you motivated. The staff are very enthusiastic and passionate about the gym and this shone through from the guy giving me a tour.

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I thoroughly enjoyed my spa visit to Rockliffe and i’m sure you will agree that even without a treatment I had plenty to keep me entertained and relaxed. If you want a luxury incredible spa day with exquisite views then Rockliffe comes highly recommended. Thanks so much Rockliffe for having me and ill be sure to visit again soon.

If you do make a booking, make sure you mention that you seen the review on Tried and Tested.

You will never find offers for this hotel or spa on any ”groupon” type sites so I would suggest you sign up, or keep checking in HERE for all the latest deals. There are some good deals on at present.

Website: www.rockliffehall.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rockliffehall

Twitter: @Rockliffe_Spa

Instagram: rockliffe_hall

 

 

 

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Handbag Essentials Care Kit – Handbag Clinic

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So after winning my amazing Mulberry Handbag worth a staggering £1600, (see the previous blog post here) courtesy of Capital FM and The Handbag Clinic, I knew I needed a cleaning kit to look after this bad boy!. I never look after anything, my shoes get ruined, my new car is a shit tip but who could possibly NOT look after this beauty?. I love handbags and shoes, oh and coats, I have a thing about coats so you can imagine the screams of glee when I won. To keep my bag in tip top condition I just had to order this amazing Handbag Essentials Care Kit available from The Handbag Clinic  priced at £49.95, a small price to pay to keep your expensive leather handbags looking their best. Included in the kit is

  • 100ml Fabric protector
  • 100ml Leather cleaner
  • 100ml Fabric cleaner
  • 100ml Leather protection cream
  • 100ml Liquid leather protector
  • cloth
  • Handbag Hook

I will be putting this kit to good use on some of my old leather handbags to bring them back to life and it will be on hand to preserve my new one! Well done Handbag Clinic for bringing this amazing piece of kit #loveyourhandbags xxxxxx

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Decléor Hydra Floral Hydrating Active Lotion

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Where do I start?. When I was introduced to this NEW moisturiser I was skeptical to say the least. A moisturiser that is the consistency of water…naaaa!!!! We all know the brand Decleor and we know they are a firm favorite in the skincare and spa industry but I wasn’t convinced with this new product. Now we all know I suffer from oily skin so I have to make sure skincare matches my skin type as anything too heavy just melts off and I end up looking like a wax work literally so sometimes I even avoid moisturiser when applying my foundation for a night out!!!. I never suffer from acne but I do suffer from open pores. The first time I picked this up to try  I nearly used it as a micellar water and had to remind myself that is is actually a moisturiser. I shook out a few drops on the palms of my hands, rubbed them together and patted into my face. Instantly on my hands you could feel this was not water. It was silky and light and smelt amazing as all Decleor products do. My skin drank it up with no residue left so my make up went on beautifully. My skin felt hydrated but without the moisturiser after feel but with a luminous glow. A big hit with Mrs T&T.

”Pollution and emotional stress can accentuate skin dehydration. Combining the freshness of a cosmetic water with the hydration power of a cream, this active lotion offers skin continuous hydration. Enriched with Moringa Olifeira extract providing protection against pollution particles, it reveals a beautiful skin texture. Skin feels plumped, with dehydration lines appearing smoothed. Skin glows and feels fresh.

Apply 2-3 drops into your hands (no cotton pad needed) and massage into a cleansed face and neck.Use as either a moisturiser after the Aromessence or as a moisture booster for your usual cream by using this beforehand.”

 

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CLINIQUE GIFT LAUNCH – HOUSE OF FRASER INTU METRO CENTRE

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What a great evening I had last night at the Clinique gift launch in House of Fraser Intu Metro Centre. There was gift bags, nibbles, sparkle and make – up demos. As you can see I stuck to water and I loved the branded bottles although I didn’t lay off the cakes and had far too many. Clinique is very well know for skin care but has really become a rival in the cosmetics now too. As you all know I am a huge fan of their beyond perfecting foundation and concealer  and their chubby highlighting stick . The girls are lovely and full of knowledge about the brand. Now is a great time to buy from Clinique as they are currently on ”gift” which means if you buy two or more products, one being skincare or foundation you get this pictured gift completely FREE. Included in the gift is a mixture of skincare and cosmetics, including a handbag size of my favorite foundation which will be matched to suit. What you waiting for girls, stock up on your favorite products or give Clinique a try!. I can recommend the girls in House of Fraser to help you find the perfect products to suit. Gift runs from 5/5/16 to 21/5/16.

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