Monday, 29 September 2014

Beautiful Irish Brands: Aurora Band

Hi Everyone, Welcome to todays Beautiful Irish Brands which today has the spotlight on the Aurora Band. 

The Aurora Band is the creation of Lindsey Byrne a hairdresser and salon owner from Dublin. Lindsey was trying to find an alternative to a daily curly blow dry, she had seen other people achieve this type of look by wrapping their hair around a hairband. (Dont try this Lindsey has assured me that this was an absolute disaster! )but it was through this disaster that the Aurora Band was born. Lindsey knew that the idea was right but the execution ( a thin hairband) was wrong. Together with her partner Alex she set about DIYing the first Aurora band with some foam combined with the velcro from rollers. I absolutely love the ingenuity of this idea I think It is amazing inventing! 
Lindsey then roped in another family member in the form of her aunt who made the first prototypes of the Aurora Band!
Lindsey took her creation onto Dragons Den earlier this year which is where I first saw the Aurora Band. She received the backing of Gavin Duffy and has now taken the Aurora Band Nationwide. It is available in Pharmacies Nationwide. RRP €12.99
As always with my posts in this series I have reviewed the band myself, Thanks to Lindsey for sending me one to trial. 
The Aurora Band is very simple to put into your hair, you part it at the back and wrap it around the band in sections. They give you a tip to leave space at the back for unwinding and you really should follow that tip.Once the band is in all you need to do is sleep in it. Its fairly comfortable to sleep with it in as it is padded all the way around. To remove it you start from the back and unwind the hair. 
Once your hair is unwound It takes a minute to settle after being pulled from the velcro. Mine then looked like this.

I was pretty happy with this result as the picture shows! I will however keep trying to improve with it as I did find that the every time I used it was a little better than the last. 
I have naturally mad curly frizzy hair and so I did tame it a little with a straightener before I used It as the band will not smooth your roots. 

Have you tried the Aurora Band yet?

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Beautiful Irish Brands : Waxperts

Welcome to the latest edition of my Beautiful Irish Brands series. Todays post is all about the wonderful Waxperts and the ladies who created It.

Waxperts was formed in 2008 by friends and business partners Ellen Kavanagh and Trish O Brien. They started off and still are based in Dun Laoghaire Co. Dublin.
The waxperts story is a genuine 'built from the ground up' success story that leaves you really rooting for them once you have heard it. It started as a room in a clinic doing waxing for a small customer base and with grants from the local enterprise board and extreme hard work grew into what it is today a full waxing salon and their own range of wax which is the only depilatory wax manufactured in Ireland and the only of its kind in the world. It is currently used in over 300 salons in Ireland and the UK, there is also the extremely exciting news that waxperts are going to be breaking into the US market after recent talks with the worlds number 1 waxing brand! ( i'll have to leave you guessing on what that brand is)
Both Ellen and Trish are beauty therapists who solely specialise in waxing and client safety and hygiene which is why they have a 'no double dipping' policy that they and every salon that uses the wax abides by.
Waxperts have a number of products that include hot wax, strip wax, pre wax oil, after wax oil and finally Ingrown hair pads which I have reviewed for you today.

Let me start off by telling you that I am the poster girl for ingrown hairs that go bad! I cant even count how many times I have had to visit the doctors in the last few years to get medication to reduce inflammation ect due to ingrown hairs. So when I was sent my ingrown hair pads I of course already had some that I could immediately begin testing on. One of the ingrown hairs I had was definitely making its way to being a doctor visit one. To use the pads you simply take a pad and rub over the area you want to treat after showering.
I used the pads every day for 3 days to get rid of the ingrown hair which was inflamed to about the size of a marble on day 1. I really fell like im giving TMI on this but I think its really good to know just how much of a lifesaver these ingrown hair pads are. For me to be able to reduce an ingrown hair by just using a pad has been a bigger lifesaver than I can express. The pads have also meant that the ingrown hair has disappeared with no scarring or scar tissue which unfortunately I have too much of. Thank you Waxperts I will never again be without these pads and fingers crossed I will never again have to be subject to the pain of ingrown hairs, I am only sad that I hadn't found these sooner.
The pads rrp is €9.99 available from
They are also available on cloud10beauty and dolledup although the pads are so good that they are currently sold out in all of these places! Keep your eyes peeled for when they come back into stock I know I will. 
Have you tried any waxpert products or been waxed in a salon that uses their products. Let me know in the comments.
You can also find me on twitter @clareken86
Instagram: sparkleblossombeauty


Glamglow Sample Pack Review

A few weeks ago I found out from Zoe that Glamglow sell a sample pack! Ah excited much. I got straight onto their website and bought one for myself. Glamglow is one of the brands I always wanted to try so the sample pack was perfect for me.

The sample pack came with two samples each of Brightmud, Thirstymud, Youthmud and Supermud. 

I had heard so many amazing things about Supermud that I went straight for it. This is the coolest & most effective face masque I have ever used! It is completely magic and I now know why I was hearing all of the amazing things. You apply the mask and It dries in like a regular mud masque but that is when the amazingness happens you start to notice it getting darker in spots again this is actually the mud drawing out all of the impurities from your pores. I literally stood in front of the mirror the whole time watching this masque working. You wash It off after anywhere between 5 and 20 minutes I left mine on the 20 mins as It didnt get uncomfortably tight like regular mud masques do. The second sachet I used as a spot treatment the day before a wedding It made a gigantic spot on the back of my neck disappear in only 2 applications.I am most definitely purchasing the full size of this it is so worth Its price tag. I dont have oily skin but this completely cleared away all blackheads and made my skin so clear.


First thing I noticed when I opened this was how beautiful the smell was I loved It! I was excited about using this masque as Its aimed for dry/ dehydrated skin and that is me. This glides on really easily and felt really hydrating going on It was also really cooling and comfortable on my face. It says that you could wear this during a flight and that you can just leave it on until it completely soaks in. I left mine on for about an hour but here is where I made my boo boo. I washed the masque off with water and I was not happy with the results. My skin was slightly softer but felt drier than before I used the masque. I did read after that you should just wipe the masque off and I havent had time to use the second yet to see if there is a difference in outcome but I wasnt impressed with how my skin was after especially from such a pricey masque.


Next I tried BrightMud this is a masque for under your eyes. I had never used anything like this before so I was very intrigued by It and excited to see the outcome. The look of the product was a jelly with herbs/tea leaves It reminded me of one of them Knorr stock pots!! I know Its probably not the look you want but Ive put worse looking things on my face. It says to tap on an even layer under eyes and leave on for 3 minutes then wipe off with a soft tissue.
When I applied first there was a mild stinging and It was a little uncomfortable on but I wasnt sure If that was me having an adverse reaction or If this was meant to happen. This stinging did ease off a minute or two after I wiped away the masque. My eyes felt very refreshed and definitely looked brighter after using.


This masque is called a tinglexfoliate and wow does It tingle! I applied this and after about two minutes It really started to tingle. It is a mud masque and dries fairly quickly. The ingredients of this masque are french sea clay, green tea leaf and eh volcanic rock! So you leave this on for 10 minutes then clean it off with water using circular motions. I found It a little hard to get off so I used a face cloth. This was like the SuperMud it cleared out my pores a little and I could see it on masque before I removed It. after removing my skin was so clear and so so soft. I really liked this masque a lovely treat!

I had so much fun testing all of these glamglow samples this kit is such a great idea for anyone who wants to try without committing to full size. I bought this from the glamglow website and It was £17.00. My favourite was definitely SuperMud.
Have you tried any Glamglow products? Which is your favourite let me know in the comments.


Homewares Wishlist

Hi Everyone
As Its Wednesday today Its a day off from beauty. To look at beauties of another kind. So in the last six months Ive gotten married and moved into a proper grown up person house. I think that Im now nesting for the winter because Im finally starting to get around to having spare rooms that are not just storage for things I havent unpacked yet.
I also must have been living under a rock beacause I have also just found out that h&m sell homewares and pretty spectacular ones at that. I literally want everything from the website, do you remember the friends episode when rachael decorates the apartment to the exact window display of pottery barn yeah? thats what I want for my whole house from this website! I have created a wishlist for my spare bedroom..( although I think I want these for my own bedroom) of items from h&m.
these are available on Have you gotten anything from h&m homewares? Let me know in the comments if you have x

Duvet Set £34.99
Candles £1.99

Pillowcase £3.99
Curtains £14.99

Doormat £14.99
Ok so this wouldn't be for the bedroom but it's so cool I need it!!

H&M don't currently deliver to Ireland and I don't think parcel motel will work for this one but I've got my fingers crossed that they will change this really soon. 


Bespoke Chic Treat Box

Hi all, a couple of weeks ago I was very lucky to win a competition on Sineads fabulous the beautiful truth blog. The prize was a bespoke Chic Treat Club box which was to be made up of the most popular items from the last few boxes. What an amazing prize! This is what I got in my box and how I got on with it.

So I got 5 full size items in the box only one of which I had ever used! 

I will start off with the one I had used before which was impress nails. I love these nails they're amazing I had actually done a review on these already which you can find here          I was definitely delighted to get another set and especially in such a nice colour! 

Next up was the sleek eye dust which was in a green. I haven't used this I knew by looking at it it wasn't for me so I gave it to a teenage friend and she was delighted with it. 

Next in the box was inecto pure argan hand & nail cream. This smells really nice and is lightweight and fairly non greasy it dries in pretty quickly too. This has earned a place beside the kitchen sink where it will be used very regularly throughout the winter. 

Next up is the cleanse off mitt which I won't go into too much detail on as I have it in the pipeline to be part of a different blog post. 

The final product in the box is the NYX push up bra for eyebrow. I thought this was a bit of a weird name but heyho. It says that the colour will flatter any eyebrow shade and I was happy with it as being blonde most eyebrow products come out very orange this wasn't. The other side is a highlighter but I wasn't too impressed with it as it had no shimmer at all it was more like a pink eyeliner. This pencil was ok but was hard enough to put on as you had to press a bit for colour. 

I was delighted with this prize and loved testing the stuff. Have you won any fun competitions or gotten any of these in your past chic treat boxes? Let me know in the comments x 

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Playboy makeup

So who knew that Playboy does makeup now? 
When I think of playboy I think of the really glamorous pin ups from the 60s with eyeliner flicks and red lips! The original playboy pinups and bunnies are so iconic and I was excited to test out thurs products to see if I could channel some of them vibes. 

First up is this *lipstick in bubblegum pink! This is definitely a barbie type colour! The lipstick itself goes on easily dosnt dry out lips and has an ok lasting time but you would definitely need it with you for touch ups. 

Next is another *lipstick in shade front cover. It's an orange/pink shade that looks much more orange in the tube than it is. I really liked this shade it's bold enough to notice without being really in your face. I like the packaging for the lipsticks and the way they have done a simple branding rather than have playboy plastered everywhere on the tube. 

Next up is *nail polish in fleuro euro. This is a neon (fluorescent) pink shade. This was my favourite playboy product it went on really easy was just the right consistency. I used two coats to get the look in picture and I've had it on for 3 days now and there is no sign of any chipping. This definitely gets my thumbs up. 
Have you tried any playboy makeup let me know in the comments x 

*pr sample 


Monday, 15 September 2014

My Chelle Skincare Review

My Chelle is a Dermaceutical skincare range that was founded in 2000. Its focus is to produce non toxic skincare that is also as eco-friendly as possible. My Chelle is part of PETAS list of Cruelty free companies and is also partnered with the WILD foundation with the aim of preserving wildlife. 
My Chelle offer a special 6 point skin analysis scan which shows the condition of your skin, you can also get a follow up scan to show how well their products are working on your skin. This scan is free and is a testament to how sure they are that their products will work for you that they are willing to show you proof in the form of this free before and after scan. 
I recieved the following products as pr samples for review 

Incredible Pumpkin Peel 
When using this product the quote 'no pain no gain' came to my mind! I absolutely hated the smell of this and really didnt want to put this on my face but in the interest of being a good blogger I held my nose and did it!
The colour was a pumpkin orange colour sort of a brown orange. So you use a thin layer on your face and leave it on for 1-3 minutes before washing off with cool water. So this was when the pumpkin peel changed for me. Once I had It on my face the smell dramatically lessened in its potency and It felt really comfortable on my face. It had said on the box that tingling was common but I didnt experience any but I did do the recommended patch test before using on my face.
After using my skin felt really clean and there was a huge difference in how smooth and soft my skin was especially in the two days that followed. I will use this again as the results are definitely worth bearing through the smell for 3 minutes. 

Remarkable Retinal Serum
First off the colour of this serum is a very strong luminous yellow which I was at first a bit nervous about using in case It stained my face that colour, but do not panic It wont ( well It didn't) It absorbs into skin easily and gives a really healthy glow. I have been testing for 2 weeks and It has really firmed up my skin and although I havent noticed a big difference in my wrinkles I can see how It would improve them from using long term. I love how healthy my skin looks after use and I have found myself going without makeup most days! 

Have you tried any MyChelle Products yet? It is available in Clerys and House of Fraser. 

Younique 3D fiber lashes

If your anything like me you will have noticed the bombardment on twitter and Instagram lately of this new make up brand Younique. So when Rachael sent me some products to try I was really intrigued to see what all of the fuss was about. I was sent Moodstruck 3D fiber lashes. 

My very first impressions of this were how fancy the fiber lashes kit was packaged. It comes in a hard case really like a sunglasses case lined with suede with the younique logo on both outside and inside. I have been cursed with short, straight, blonde, sparse eyelashes and anyone who reads my blog regularly know that Im fussy about eyelash products. I was eager to try this because the pictures I had seen were of these mega eyelashes, now from past experience I knew not to expect this as the mega lashes are probably the result on those who already have mega eyelashes on their own. 
I figured the best way for me to review this was trying It out lots and including lots of before and after pics.

So this is a two part kit you need to add your own mascara to this so the two parts that you do get are transplanting gel and natural fibres. 
You then need to follow these steps to get the look. One of the tips is to do one eye at a time rather than trying to do both. 
  1. Apply your mascara on both eyes and let dry.
  2. Apply an even coat of transplanting gel on lashes
  3. immediately before gel dries apply fibers onto lashes
  4. Seal fibers with another coat of transplanting gel. 

This was my first time using fibres on my eyelashes and I have to say I am a fan I didnt think that the difference would be quite as noticable on my lashes as It is, and I do have to admit that regular mascara just dosnt have the same appeal after using this. The first time I used It I did have a lot of the fibres fall onto my cheeks but Ive since read this is from putting on too much fibres oops and It was fine on the other tries. This will definitely be a go to product for me for special occasions that I previously would have worn false lashes for.

Younique will be opening in UK on October 1st for Presenters (sellers) and will open for customers on November 1st. Ive been told that there is amazing opportunities for those who do want to become presenters, for customers the 3D fiber lashes retails at £23. 
If you are unable to wait for the two months you can buy from Rachel with a delivery charge of £6.95.
If you do want to buy or want information about becoming a presenter or would just like some more info about the rest of the products that Younique have to offer contact Rachel on or

Thursday, 11 September 2014

My Quest for Old Hollywood Hair

Hi everyone todays post is all hair related.
 Ive been on the quest to make my hair look like old hollywood movie star hair which I love and so over the last few weeks Ive been trying lots of different techniques to try to get this.
Some of these were really funny so I figured Id snap a few pics and share it with you!
Let me start off by telling you that I am still on my quest none of the methods that I have tried here worked for me so I suppose its a bit of a what not to do If trying to get old hollywood style hair.

First up I tried Bantu Curls which were reccommended to me by another blogger I hadnt heard of these before so there was a bit of googling involved before I could start. So basically Its like tying your hair into lots of little buns to get curls.

This definitely gave my hair volume but I didnt get the sleek curl that I was looking for from this method. So It was a bit of a fail, but definitely an experience!

Next up I tried my  Hot Rollers. I have a love hate relationship with these they only work for me sometimes and Im not sure why. When they do work my hair looks amazing but when they dont It is limp and disappointing. I dont like how unreliable they are or my skills at using them more like.

On this occasion they failed to impress and all I ended up with was limp hair filled with hairspray and even with all that hairspray the curl that I did have fell out after about 20 minutes.

The closest that I actually got to my hair looking decent was me straightening it and sweeping to the side but again it's not what I'm looking for. 

I'd love for you to leave me your tips in the comments for now I continue my quest!! 

Santaverde Brand new range Introduction

Hello everyone hope your all doing good. Today I'm introducing a new range age protect from brand Santaverde that will be released for sale on September 22nd. I have not tried any of these products yet so this post is purely informational. 
Santaverde is a 100% natural skincare made with 100% active ingredients with NO water. They eliminate the water by replacing it with an aloe vera base, but not just any base they combine pure aloe vera juice with the nectar from aloe vera blossom which when processed is said to produce an anti oxidant elixir. Essential oils are then blended with this base to create their products. 
There are four products in the Santaverde age protect range. 
Age Protection Toner £32
Aloe vera base blended with rockrose leaves & extract. This toner is said to provide optimal care for hyperpigmentation. 

Age Protection Facial Oil £38
Thistle seeds, argan fruit & evening primrose oil are combined with aloe vera to create this oil. I've been really loving facial oils lately and really recommend that everyone includes one into their skincare routine. 

Age Protect Boost £38
This is a concentrated care product aimed to re-balance stressed skin when a 10 day course is followed. 

Age Protect Moisturiser £46
Hylauronic acid & root extracts are blended with aloe base to create this moisturiser. 

I love the look of the packaging it's very simple but appears very high end to me. 
These products will be available from Harvey Nichols in the Uk and Ireland 
And from their own website 

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Wooden Flamingo Chalk Board

If you have been following the blog you will of seen that I am branching out to include other posts besides beauty. I have decided that Wednesdays will be my day for non beauty posts.
This week is a gorgeous chalk board* from Wooden Flamingo.

This really pretty chalk board is shaped like a cloud and is a really lovely shade of sky blue.
You can tell that it has been handmade with love like most things found on Etsy.

I love chalk boards and spent a good chunk of last year searching for the perfect one to be part of my wedding photos to use on thank you cards. I really wish I had found these ones for the photos. This is currently hanging in my kitchen to remind me of stuff I have to do and to just write fun quotes on!

The delivery to Ireland was so quick less than a week and It was packaged so beautifully which I think is very important when buying from Etsy as it adds a lovely personal touch.
This particular chalk board would be perfectly at home in a little boys room or as a new baby boy gift.
 Ive recently moved and am slowly trying to decorate and I have just fallen in love with the handpainted signs from Wooden Flamingo and they also do Wedding Signs.
This retails at £6.00 or €7.71.
You can find more info on

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Essence Pureskin Skincare Launch

Essence is one of everybody's favorite budget make up brands. They have now the very exciting news of expanding into the skincare market. Their new skincare range Pureskin is marketed towards problamatic, oily skin. This coupled with essence always budget prices will make it the perfect skincare range for teenagers.
Let me just give you a short introduction to the range.
I havent tried any of the products yet myself so Its purely information for today.

 Anti-Shine Pore Refining Serum €3.79
This serum is said to  regulate sebum production and free skin from excess oil.

Anti-Spot Cover Cream €3.49
A tinted cream which aims to cover whilst also fighting spots.

Anti-Spot BB cream €5.49
This aims to cover impurities without blocking your pores. It also has added bonus of SPF10.

Anti-Spot 4in1 cream wash €3.49
This can be used daily for washing face or as a mask. Its aim is to clean skin, remove blackheads, give a matt complexion and refine pores. Sounds like a great multi use skincare product for teens on a budget.

Purifying nose strips €1.89
Im pretty sure everyone knows what nose strips are meant to do by now this is the product from the range im most excited about as I dont have oily skin but I suffer with blackheads on my nose so these will definitely be on my shopping list especially at under €2.

SOS spot killer €3.79
This is an overnight spot treatment aimed at clearing skin while you sleep.

Anti Spot Gel €2.99
an on the go treatment gel designed to cool and treat spots.

This essence pureskin range is available in pennys stores and pharmacies from September.
Have you used any of these products yet? Let me know in the comments

You can also find me on twitter @clareken86

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

My other love :Sparkle

Hey everyone hope your all good?
So I've been blogging for a while and I love beauty but I thought It was about time to introduce you to my other love Sparkly Blingy Jewelry!
Ive put together a few of my favourite bits for this post but let me assure you there is lots lots more where these came from.

Im going to tell you a little about each of these products and will go in a left to right and hope to not confuse anybody with it!

First up Is the crystal earrings from Pearls for Girls I bought these to wear at my engagement drinks 2 years ago. they are so simple and classy with that added sparkle that just catches peoples eye without being too in your face. these are really elegant and versatile and go good with hair up and down. Im not sure what price I paid I think they were about €30 will get you stockists ect.

Next up are my stud earrings for some daytime sparkle from Crystals and Co a lovely Irish company that I am a massive fan of. well of course I would be they sell lots and lots of sparkle. These are the baby peach crystal studs and retail at €16.00.
you can order online from

Next up is a lovely sparkly bracelet from Absolute jewellery design also an Irish brand.I love this bracelet It is really slinky and catches the light beautifully.  This bracelet I got as a gift from my husband (before he was my husband) you can find their stockists here

Next up are some new sparkly hair clips that I got from Claires Accessories these are perfect for adding a bit of bling if your outfit dosnt permit too much. these retail at €8.95.

Last up are the 3 ball drop earrings from Crystals and Co. I wore these in March for my wedding. I wanted a statement pair of earrings that were also bridal. These were perfect for me! I wore a simple dress and no neck jewelry so they were the showpiece and tbh I was more excited about putting these on than my wedding dress!! These are also available from and retail for €72.

I hope you have enjoyed todays post Im still getting used to writing about things that are not beauty products so id love your feedback in the comments.
you can also find me on twitter : @clareken86
instagram: sparkleblossombeauty


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