Moroccanoil Colour Complete Protect & Prevent Spray review

product review

Isn’t it the most frustrating thing ever when your fresh hair colour fades out of existence? For me, my non brassy blonde generally will last around one week before the colour would start to dull. Cue the massive exodus of dry shampoo (as its white) and purple toners to try and desperately revive my former colour.

This dullness is caused by external environmental factors, such as UV rays and pollutant damage. Taking this into consideration, I knew on my recent trip to Croatia that my hair was going to suffer. Lots of sun, lots of drying chlorine.

A couple of weeks prior to flying out to Croatia I was at LFW at the Aadnevik show; on the back of this the PR’s had sent me some Moroccanoil hair products to try. These were used throughout the show, and I know the products are used in salons.

This is where the Colour Complete Protect & Prevent spray comes in. It is designed to shield against environmental aggressors, this prevents oxidation and it also protects against thermal damage. The spray uses ArganID micro-encapsulated technology to repair and seal hair cuticles to lock in colour. It’s almost like this spray was designed for me to take on holiday!

How did it perform?

Across the entire range of Moroccanoil products I have been testing there is a real salon, professional feel. They all smell magnificent, and leave your hair feeling not only soft – but healthy.

The Colour Complete spray really did help to maintain my hair colour. And I knew it would be a challenge, years of peroxide has altered my hair to become very porous; and colour fade is something I have learnt to accept over the years. However armed with this spray, I managed to minimise damage and enhance my colour. I love the fact you just spray it through your hair, as you would with any heat protection spray.

My hair colour below after a few days in the sun:

I’d highly recommend this to anyone. It’s not just for those with coloured hair, external damage occurs mainly from environmental factors. Living in London with a huge amount of pollution affects not only our health, but our skin and hair too. I think it’s important to raise awareness of products that protect against this damage. Just because you can’t physically see the damage, doesn’t mean it isn’t occurring all the time!

You can purchase the Moroccanoil Colour Complete Protect & Prevent Spray here, £22.65 for 160ml

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Why you should visit Croatia in October

reviews, travel

It may seem like a pretty random time to jet off to a beach holiday, but October in Croatia is literal perfection. It’s the end of their holiday season, which means you can have free reign of the pool, sun loungers and all associated excursions. The temperature at this time of year is comfortable, ranging from 24-26 degrees on average.

My friend Elizabeth and I have just returned from spending one week in Makarska, Croatia. Makarska is a town located around an hour and a half drive from Split airport, it is on the Adriatic coast line and very scenic. You get the ultimate combination of mountains, forestry, plus a Mediterranean style coastline.

I have visited many countries all over Europe, but I must say Croatia really impressed me. Here are the main reasons why you should visit (any time of year really, but October is exceptionally good):

1. Weather

Although the official average for October is between 24 – 26 degrees, it feels much warmer than this. I sunbathed on a day where the temperature was 26 degrees, and developed a bronze tan in under two hours! The sun is intense and there is almost no humidity (nothing like the UK summer sun). The October sun is great as it isn’t too over bearing, don’t get me wrong you can still burn (I have the itches to prove this). But it’s comfortable, especially when sleeping at night.

2. Culture

There are thousands of Croatian islands and I would recommend visiting even a handful when you visit. We did a boat tour to the islands of Brač and Hvar, and each island has unique qualities to offer. Hvar was rural, and it was fantastic to see the locals selling a myriad of Lavender produces (grown naturally on the island), plus many herbs and chillies grown there. The architecture is beautiful, as much of the island contains limestone, buildings and houses are pale which provides a lovely contrast to the deep blue of the sea, and the palm trees.

The island of Brač is the longest Croatian island and has an amazingly beautiful coastline; the length makes it a paradise for divers and water sports fanatics.

(Below – View of the Adriatic Coastline from the Island of Brač)

And here are some from Hvar island:

Not only does Croatia have fantastic produce to offer, there is an array of wildlife on each island too. When travelling between islands we spotted many dolphins, and our tour guide informed us that there are also whales and sharks in the Adriatic Sea. Many of the islands have lizards, snakes and wild cats!

3. End of season

Despite October being the most perfect heat in Croatia, it’s also grand to visit in October as it’s not too busy. There are still plenty of excursions you can experience, but it’s not heaving with tourists. I think that this enhances your experience and allows you to really take in the views and culture (and of course the all important sun bathing!).

If you have ever considered visiting Croatia, and you were on the fence about your decision. Let me make it for you. Go to Croatia, you will have your breath taken away. It is rich in culture, hospitable, and stunning to look at. I may have just found paradise on Earth…

I’d like to give a special thanks to TUI and the TUI Sensimar Adriatic Beach Resort. The TUI representatives and the hotel staff were more than accommodating, they went above and beyond. They each made this trip one in a lifetime.

Secluded: how to beauty shop on rural holidays 

top tips

Because no matter where you holiday this summer 2016, you will find a source to purchase cosmetics or perfume. Or even hair products. Any type of item which epitomises vanity? 

Even if you are in the middle of a jaw-droppingly beautiful Sardinian village, where the locals twist up their necks to stare at you as they must have never seen a platinum blonde girl before – and absolutely no one speaks English.  Yep, there is hidden treasures even in the most remote of places.

Here’s my top tips for rural beauty buys; 

1. Locality 

If it isn’t already blindingly obvious – find out which local produce is popular wherever you are staying. For example, last year in Crete I found olive oil products were available in almost every store – as they are locally grown and produced. Natural products are often better for the skin and hair, you are helping independant business’ and you end up with unique, quaint, raw products. 

Triple threat right there. 

2. Hidden treasure 

As well as local produce, you can also try products unique to the area you are staying. For example, I have just come back from Sardinia and I found a perfume, (infact the holy grail of all perfumes) produced and sold only in Sardinia – which I fell in love with. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Chanel girl at heart – but this perfume is a strong contender in winning my affection. 

Aqua di sardegna – smeralda (Incase anyone wants to smell heaven on earth – an absolute orgasm for your nose) 

It’s well worth paying attention to brands you’ve never heard of – sometimes you find some real bargains which can grow to become some of your favourite products. 


3. Marketplace 

Any rural area will always have a flea market. The original hipster place to be seen. 

But honestly, you can find some real bargains here – again, local produce will be rife. Also hand made jewellery, handbags, purses etc will be available. 

Unique pieces aplenty. 

4. Deep

Any dedicated shopper/ shopping addict will know, sometimes the best products are in the most unlikely of shops. 

When beauty shopping on holiday, try supermarkets and pharmacies for unique products. For example in Sardinia I found a Loreal shampoo which is only sold in salons in the uk – specifically for colour damaged hair. It was great to see that top quality product in a tiny supermarket in a province of Sardinia. 

They may also sell their own branded make up which could be well worth trying. 

The local pharmacy was also a victim of my spending. They had, again, unique perfumes from the region; amazing amounts of skin care by well known and lesser known brands. A make up stand, containing cosmetics by two brands I had never heard of (but they looked top quality). 

If you look hard enough you will find something you either need – or don’t so much need, but want – because you can never have too much make up. Perfume. Hair products. Clothes. Shoes. Handbags… 

Happy hunting. 

That’s so hot: best of summer 16

product review

Even if this summer in England was a complete wash-out (quite literally); there is still an intense need to compile favourite / much needed beauty products for summer. Who even needs an excuse to buy more?

  1. Serum me up baby

Chanel -Hydra beauty serum, £78 for 50ml

Let’s be honest buying and using Chanel products can make anyone feel like Audrey Hepburn. The epitome of class; this hydrating serum is a must-have. It smells divine, and it is multi-purpose. Can be used as a primer before make-up application, as a daily moisturiser or treatment for skin. Plus it looks great on your dressing table. (Yes I am that superficial).

Quick tip: Try to buy Chanel products at the duty free section at airports, I got this serum for around £45, which is almost half price.

2. Mattify me

NYX – Matte blotting paper, £3.50 for 50 sheets

NYXX is slowly becoming my favourite beauty brand. Such good value for money – and these blotting papers are a life saver. If, like me after 3 hours your make-up looks like you’ve been dipped in a chip fat fryer; then you need these blotting papers. They soak up excess oil without spoiling your contour, and they fit in your handbag. Cuuuuute.

3. Baby,baby

Maybelline – Baby skin instant pore eraser, £7.99 for 22ml

If the blotting papers aren’t adequate defence against major grease, I would recommend this primer. The trick to achieving a matte face (espesh in summer when humidity makes your face melt off like an Ikea candle), is attacking it from all angles. Prep is the best defence, and with this primer you’ll be as matte as matte can be.

4. Good enough to eat

Hawaiian Tropic – SPF 25 lipgloss in island berry, £6 for 20ml

This does actually smell good enough to eat. And it’s brilliant because it gives a seductive glossy finish to lips, and is intensely moisturising plus has SPF 25 to protect lips from harmful UV rays. If you are going abroad this summer to a country with a hot climate – don’t leave without this sexy (practical) gloss.

5. Milky

L’Occitane – Milk veil with almond proteins, £28 for 250ml

If there’s one thing summer does do – it can seriously dehydrate your skin. This milk veil is the perfect moisturising treat for skin, apply morning and night (after bathing is the best time). This will make you smell gorgeous, and your skin will be as smooth as silk. This milkshake will bring all the boys to your yard!

Common misconception 

opinion piece

So you’ve all heard you can legally smoke weed in Amsterdam right. It’s the fundamental reason most people visit the city. It’s nothing monumental to be told this; however before I visited the city, from some people there is an air of snootiness about the place. Which I think is totally unfair. 

Common ignorance would have you believe it’s the seediest of places, with prostitutes on every corner and so much weed smoking that the whole city is covered by a massive cloud of smoke. In fact the truth is, it’s not like that at all. 

There are sex shops. But they look like Ann summers, it’s nothing new. Of course there are strip clubs etc. IF you go looking for them, which I’m pretty sure is the same in every city. Sex sells and there’s always a demand for it.

Apart from smoking weed and visiting the (most interesting) sex museum, there is so much more to Amsterdam. Everywhere you look there is quintessential European architecture, culturally rich and aesthetically pleasing. There are quaint traditional Dutch patisseries on every corner offering an array of delicious looking pastries (do not expect to be on a carb free diet in Holland). And there is also a more relaxed and neutral atmosphere, especially compared to London. I really entered this city with the wrong attitude, and I do not want others to do the same. It’s a beautiful city – make the most of it. Rather then going and getting stoned 24/7. You will miss out on experiencing a fantastic city. 

Fashion & beauty tips for Amsterdam 

As previously mentioned, everyone in this city is so god damned laid back. When you enter central London you see all sorts of fashion eccentricities and glamour. Amsterdam is nothing like that – over the whole weekend I didn’t see one girl who looked overtly glamorous or dressed up. (I only wish someone had told me all this so I didn’t traipse around the city looking like a tourist attraction dressed to the odds like kendra wilkinson) 

1. Casual clothing rules here. Think jeans with a nice top and boots, simplistic outfits. I honestly saw not one person in heels. 

2. Beware of the cobblestones. The roads here in Amsterdam central are mainly cobblestones so trainers or flat shoes which are easy to walk in are highly advisable. 

3. Make up wise most people look rather natural. So go for nude shades, lipgloss and an overal natural glow. 

4. In terms of hair, anything goes here really. But if you want to blend in and look like a local, bright blonde hair with cute plaits to match! (See below image, I really tried hard to look Dutch)