Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Experience: Nourish Facial at Beauty Works West

Beauty Works West in Notting Hill has become my little slice of paradise in London. The staff are warm, friendly, knowledgeable and some of the best massage and facial therapists I've come across in my time.
I was therefore more than thrilled to be invited back to Beauty Works West to experience one of the Medi Spa's latest offerings - the Nourish Facial.

This intensely hydrating, swoon-worthy facial uses Black Chicken Remedies products - a luxury organic Australian brand quickly making a name for itself due to its gentle, effective products that virtually send you off to a higher plane when you use them. They're that good.

Black Chicken Remedies

The facial was actually created by one of the therapists at Beauty Works West, Elize Moritz, and combines these gorgeous, all natural products with acupressure and reflexology to create an experience as good for the soul as it is for the complexion.

My facial took place in one of the dimly lit therapy rooms at Beauty Works West - a little nook of comfort and relaxation filled with the soft scent of organic candles and complete with a heated bed.

The ritual began with gentle yet thorough cleansing using the Cleanse My Face cleansing facial oil that is a deeply calming cleanser containing 14 medicinal oils to purify, soothe and remove make up without disturbing the skins natural oil balance.

Next, the Complexion Polish was gently applied to exfoliate the skin. Complexion Polish is one of my favourite Black Chicken products - it's made from 100% natural finely milled ingredients including rice, argan shell and kaolin clay to gently buff away dry skin and flaky bits. The Complexion Polish is a dry formula that's mixed in with cleanser to form a delicious paste - a little touch that I love in skincare products

My skin was then closely examined for blemishes and steam applied to encourage the dirt and general yuckiness to make its way to the surface, ready for extractions.
A face, neck and d├ęcolletage massage followed, which I have to tell you was nothing short of incredible. The massage incorporated Love Your Body Oil which includes coconut, hazelnut, sandalwood, geranium and lavender oils to name a few.

The most memorable part of the whole experience would have to be the Cacao Revelation Mask. Hydrating and plumping, the antioxidant mask was applied with a brush and left to work while I enjoyed a beautiful arm and hand massage. The mask has a rich yet refreshing dark chocolate scent that sorted of reminded me of an after dinner mint and it was incredibly decadent. If you book in for the facial just to see what all the fuss is about with the mask, I wouldn't blame you for a second!

Once the mask was removed, a hydrating mist was spritzed on, eye serum was applied and Love Your Face Serum was gently worked into my skin. Containing oils including jojoba, Argan, rose hip and ylang ylang, the facial serum plumps, hydrates and smells just as stunning as the rest of the products. After 80 minutes of laying there being unashamedly pampered, indulged and invigorated all at once, I simply did not want to get up. A part of me wanted to cry when I was gently told that I was done. 
After the treatment I was so utterly Zenned out I walked  to Notting Hill Gate station in the rain, somehow got lost and didn't even care. That's how blissful the Nourish Facial is.

This facial left me seriously impressed and now I'm more in love with Beauty Works West than I was before. The Nourish Facial is perfect for this time of year when the weather sucks the goodness out of our skin so I really recommend you go ahead and treat yourself or hint heavily at a Beauty Works West gift voucher for Christmas.

The Nourish Facial at Beauty Works West is £130 for 80 minutes of pure loveliness.
P.S. Stay tuned for an in depth look at some more products from Black Chicken Remedies.

* I was lucky enough to experience the Nourish Facial as a complimentary treatment. Words and opinions are my own.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

'All Fired Up' MAC Retro Matte Lipstick Review

I've read more MAC All Fired Up lipstick reviews than I can poke a stick at, but there's always room for one more, right?
Matte MAC lipsticks have kind of ruined me for life. The intensity, the pigment, the hardcore staying power - they just deliver on all fronts and it's little wonder that they are such a firm favourite among so many lipstick junkies.
All Fired Up is my first lipstick from the Retro Matte collection and also my first fuchsia-tinted shade. I tried out a few different fuchsia shades at the MAC store at Kensington High St and decided that All Fired Up was most complementary to my skin tone due to its reddish undertones when compared to other more pinky-fuchsia hues. I am keen to try more true fuchsia colours though!
The retro matte lipstick wears similarly to Ruby Woo though I would say the texture is slightly creamier and applies more smoothly. It stays put like a dream and delivers a powerful punch of colour perfect for wear all year round. I dig it.
MAC Retro Matte Lipstick in All Fired Up is £15.50 (ouch).

MAC All Fired Up Matte Lipstick fuschia pink red
MAC Retro Matte Lipstick in All Fired Up

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Experience: Acupuncture at Anamaya & New Meditation App

I visited Anamaya last year for Facial Reflexology and was so excited to be invited back to experience some Acupuncture with Dr Cheng.

As I've mentioned before, Anamaya is a sanctuary of relaxation and healing, located just off bustling Kensington High Street. Once you're off the street and through the doors, you're met with a serene, blissful atmosphere and the aroma-therapeutic scents of Neom candles.
Anamaya offer a carefully edited selection of practitioners who specialise in Homeopathy, Massage, Craniosacral therapy, Osteopathy, Dietetics, Energy Healing, Pilates, Psychotherapy, Mind, Body and Spirit therapies and of course Acupuncture.

Now, I'd had Acupuncture before in an effort to relieve my fear of flying before I moved over the the UK (obviously it had some effect because I'm here aren't I?) so I went into the experience at Anamaya with confidence and feeling as if I knew what to expect.
What I perhaps underestimated however, was the sheer kindness, humorous spirit and incredibly comforting nature of the Acupuncturist Dr Cheng.

Dr Cheng is one of those people who makes you feel comfortable and safe and I was made to feel totally at ease as he went through my concerns with me (namely stress and headaches). After examining my tongue (you'll be surprised what your tongue can tell you about yourself!), posture and ability to bend my neck in various ways, Dr Cheng was able to assess my concerns and decide the best course of action. In my case this involved 19 needles placed in various points on my back, legs, arms, neck and head and being left to relax for about 20 minutes before Dr Cheng returned to the room to check on me and 'wiggle' the needles.

I'm not needle shy (though I do feel a bit funny having blood taken) so having 19 of the little blighters stuck in me didn't concern me at all and if you're wondering if acupuncture is painful, it really isn't. The needles are so fine and tiny that you can barely feel them at all, though I have to say the points felt a bit 'achy' when Dr Cheng wiggled them slightly halfway through the session.

Then that was it, I was all done. Within an hour, I'd had a very enlightening consultation and an Acupuncture session that left me feeling oddly relaxed and energised all at the same time. If that makes any sense at all? I went for a stroll through Kensington High Street and felt at peace - despite the fact that it was a busy Saturday afternoon and it was very, very rainy.

Dr Cheng is a fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, a Governing Board Member of the British Acupuncture Council and the Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as a Principal Lecturer and Postgraduate Course Leader of Traditional Chinese Medicine here in London. I felt extremely fortunate to have him treat me and certainly recommend him - it's worth mentioning that Dr Cheng is very highly regarded for treating chronic illnesses and pain, hormonal issues and migraines and is popular among people trying to conceive.

He is available at Anamaya on Saturdays from 9am to 1pm and also consults on Chinese Medicine and Chinese Herb Treatments. A session with Dr Cheng ranges from £95-155 depending on conditions and length of sessions.

Anamaya have also recently launched a very in depth Meditation App.  Developed for those of us who struggle to fit in meditation classes, the app features over 360 guided meditations complete with visualisations, mindfulness exercises and learning resources as well as tips for getting the most out of your meditation session. Priced at £15 and available through iTunes, the Anamaya Meditation App is the first of its kind and features 11 distinct focuses, meaning it accommodates to everyone, whatever their age, sex or profession.

The focuses include:

  • General Meditation 
  • Relax
  • Loud Brain
  • Concentrate
  • Worry
  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Anger
  • Pain 
  • Pregnancy
  • Sport
The Anamaya Meditation App

Though I haven't tried the app for myself as yet, I think it's a fantastic concept that will especially benefit busy city dwellers who might not have time to actually attend classes.

If you'd like to know more about Anamaya, visit the website and check out the range of therapies on offer - you won't regret it.
You can call Anamaya on 0203 011 0355  or email them at info@anamaya.co.uk

The Acupuncture was provided for me for review purposes. All opinions my own.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask Review

Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask 

I've read so many great reviews about the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask that I'm almost ashamed it's taken me this long to try it myself!
The concept in itself seems both genius and bizarre - genius in that sleeping is a perfect time to feed your skin with a massive dose of hydration and bizarre in that there is every chance you'll wake up with a creamy mess in your hair and all over your pillow. Or so I thought.
This night time mask doesn't exactly work like that. You don't smother your face in a thick layer and then fall asleep concerned it's going to end up smeared all over the duvet, rather you massage it in and 'tissue off' the excess, or if you're like me, grab a bit of loo roll. I'm sure it has the same effect.

The mask is a thick cream formula full of essential oils and brown sugar that give it a beautifully organic, relaxing scent. The texture is not unlike a heavy moisturiser and doesn't feel cloying or sticky once the excess is wiped off.
It's worth mentioning that when I applied this for the first time last night before bed, I was actually surprised (and maybe a little bit annoyed) that it felt so refreshing and almost invigorating - not exactly the effect I wanted when I was merely minutes away from sleep. While the invigorating, refreshing feeling wasn't unpleasant in the slightest, I just wasn't expecting it and now has me thinking that the mask could well double up as a morning moisturiser.

Come morning, I was pleasantly surprised to see and feel that my skin had in fact, 'drunk up' the mask while I slept. How cool is that? I don't really know how to describe how my face felt, but hydrated and soft are two words that certainly spring to mind.
If you haven't tried Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask yet, I think now is the perfect time as it's definitely more of a wintery-weather skin treat. Origins recommend you use it twice a week but I'm not sure I'll be able to stop myself slathering this on every night. A great product.
Origings Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask is £20.70 for 100ml from Boots - my 50ml sized tube came in a gift pack.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Saying Thanks

If you're a regular Tweeter, Instagrammar, Blogger, or all of the above, chances are you've come across a few online personalities who you look up to, make you laugh or just generally give you the warm and fuzzies. In my 3 years of having a (sometimes rather quiet) presence online, I've stumbled across the Blogs and Instagram and Twitter accounts of quite a few fabulous people and today, for no particular reason, I wanted to share a handful of favourites who, although I've never physically met, have been a source of inspiration, humour or infallible kindness over the years.


Rachael lives in Lincolnshire with her fella and their really, really cute baby. Her baby is so cute, he makes me scared of having one of my own - you know, in case my baby isn't quite as cute as he is.
On her blog you'll find little peaks into her life, lifestyle articles and a whole load of dog and cow pictures. For me her blog is a little escape away from suburban London life and Rachael herself seems like a great human. Plus, she tends to favourite the lamest of my tweets so I like her.


Kirsty is blonde, Scottish, lovely and very, very funny. She has the biggest potty mouth I've ever seen on social media and she totally owns it. On her Twitter and Instagram you'll find fabulous one-liners, outfit photos and pics of her dog Blu.


allthatslap.com is one of the first blogs I actually started reading regularly and Grace herself just seems so genuinely kind. In fact, she invited me as a plus one to an event last year (which I unfortunately couldn't make in the end) but I thought it was such a nice gesture considering she's never met me. Also, she is wearing an onion necklace in her Twitter header image. Enough said.


Weng Yee is a postgrad by day, beauty blogger by night and also one of the friendliest folk I've come across online. Her blog is out of this world and she writes about skincare a lot which is never a bad thing in my book! She's kind, engaging and I appreciate every single Instagram or Twitter comment I get from her. She's a gem :)


Linda is the incredible writer behind wonderlusting.co.uk and owner of one of the most vibrant instagram accounts I've ever seen. She's down to earth, has great taste in lipstick and seems to live in Whole Foods. Her blog is brimming with beauty news, reviews, lifestyle articles and more delicious looking food than you can poke a stick at.

So that's just five great people whose Tweets, Instagrams and Blog posts I've looked forward to for the past 3 years. It just goes to show that we can leave a big impression on others, even when we only communicate online.  Small gestures and acts of kindness can go a very long way, even if they're received via a computer screen  or smart phone. Perhaps something worth remembering :)

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Sanctuary Sleep Comforting Night Butter

I've pretty much been the Mayor of Stress-ville lately so have been on a hunt for relaxing, soothing bath and body products to try and force myself to unwind in the evenings. In stressful times it's all well and good to say that you should look at the root of the problem and adjust accordingly but sometimes you just want a quick fix to take your mind off things while you continue to make self-destructive life choices!
The newest addition to my growing collection of stress-less bits and pieces is the Sleep Comforting Night Butter by Sanctuary. This majestic purple lidded tub contains 200ml of pure unadulterated bliss that's ideal for stashing in your bathroom or bedroom and being put to good use after a nice soak.
Sanctuary Sleep Comforting Night Butter

The formula is proper, thick creamy body butter that's perfect for this moisture-sapping weather that is upon us and the best part is that is actually sinks in! I slathered myself up good with this in between Masterchef Australia and bed last night and awoke with not a sign of grease. It's a revelation I tell you.
Onto the fragrance, this Night Butter smells glorious. It's packed with sleep encouraging essential oils including ylang ylang, frankincense and patchouli blended up nicely with apricot kernel oil and mango seed and shea butters, so it smells nothing short of dreamy, which is appropriate since it's designed to use at night and all.

Sanctuary Sleep Comforting Night Butter £9.50 at Boots and is currently included in a 3 for 2 offer. Get it.

Monday, 3 November 2014

*CLOSED*3rd Blog Birthday Giveaway - WIN Benefit Cheeky Sweet Spot Box O' Blushes Set!

So Lippy in London turned THREE last month and I've finally got round to hosting a little sweepstakes to celebrate!
One lucky winner will receive a Benefit Cheeky Sweet Spot Box O' Blushes Set that includes Dandelion Blusher, CORALista Blusher, Sugarbomb Blusher, Bella Bamba Blusher, Hoola Bronzer, Rockateur Blusher, a Watt's Up! Highlighter and brush all sitting nicely together in a little sweet shop inspired tin. Cute!

It's super easy to enter via the Rafflecopter widget below. Good Luck and thank you for your support over the past three years - my Blog and I appreciate it!

*Sweepstakes runs from 12am 3/11/14 to 12am 10/11/14
*UK Only (sorry!)
*If you are under 16 please seek permission from parent or guardian
*Winner will be contacted within 24 hours

a Rafflecopter giveaway