The Cruelty Free Beauty Box Deluxe [February 2020]

We’ve had to wait a little while longer for our February boxes as The Cruelty Free Beauty Box were waiting on a supplier to complete the boxes. These issues can’t be helped, but the box was most certainly not disappointing!

Here is a summary of my first impressions!

This box contains the following:

  • Balade En Provence Solid Night Cream (RRP £19.95)
  • The Salt Parlour Bath & Body Oil (RRP £16.95)
  • PITT BALM Deodorant Balm (RRP £5)
  • Ben & Anna Toothpaste White (RRP £8.95)
  • Lue by Jean Seo Fade (RRP 14.95)
  • London Copyright Eyeshadow (RRP £4.50)
  • Moo Free Cinder Toffee (RRP £3)
  • Good4u Veggie Protein Shots (RRP £1)
  • Bamboo Desire Massage Hairbrush (RRP £12.95)

The value of the box adds up to a nice £87.25. It’s not their best value box to date but I am so excited to try so many of these products!

Pictured above is the Ben & Anna toothpaste. I’ve used Ben & Anna products before. I bought a deodorant stick in Amsterdam last year when I had forgotten to pack my own and I absolutely loved it. The only thing I didn’t love was the price point!

I haven’t yet tried the toothpaste as I haven’t finished my existing tube, but I love the minty smell and it looks nice and easy to use. And with the added bonus of being in a recyclable glass jar, this looks like a promising swap!

Another 2 products I’m excited to use is the PITT BALM deodorant balm and the Balade En Provence night cream block.

I love a good deodorant spray swap and I’ve found balms really nice and easy to use, as well as really refreshing. The PITT BALM comes in a handy sized tin which can be carried in your handbag for those pit emergencies! I recommend checking out their website for their full range of products.

The Balade En Provence night cream block looks great. With lots of companies moving towards less packaging and naked products, this looks like a great swap. In the previous box, I received a gorgeous smelling hand cream which is incredible so I have high hopes for the night cream.

You’ll likely be seeing a few more blog posts in future with the details of these products when I finally get round to trying them.

BeYou: Period Patches

WARNING: this blog post talks about lady bits and menstruation, so look away if you’re not prepared for the realities.

Since having my implant removed last month, all possible hormone change symptoms have come flooding my way all at once.

Irritability, discharge, headaches and what this post will focus on… cramps!

A few weeks ago, I had debilitating cramps and I could barely get off the sofa. I haven’t suffered from cramps since I was a teenager, and even as a teen, it wasn’t this bad!

I messaged my lovely friend Emily, and she told me to go get myself a hot water bottle and have a lie down. I had forgotten how soothing a hot water bottle could be and I was glad I messaged her complaining!

Shortly after, she sent me over a picture of BeYou‘s Period Patches which she recommended to me! She described them as ‘4Head for cramps’. If any of you have used 4Head before, you’d have been as impressed as I was… so I took the plunge and bought some.

The pack comes with 5 patch strips. I bought mine on Amazon but I believe you can also purchase them at Boots and on the BeYou website.

I finally got the use them for the first time this month, and they are genuinely life changing. My cramps sort of just appeared out of no where, and although not as a bad as last time, still uncomfortable and tiring. I applied a patch underneath my belly and it made so much difference.

It felt calming and I felt comfortable so quickly after application. The product claims to last 12 hours but to be honest, I wasn’t keeping time. By the time I took it off, my cramps had gone and I was back to normal.

These patches are perfect for use at home, at school or at work. I’ve been lucky enough so far to have only suffered from my cramps at home, but I suspect in the future I may be at work so I’ll make sure these patches aren’t far! What’s better is that they are vegan and cruelty-free (although waiting accreditation)!

Delhicious Hello Beau-Tea-Ful Body Scrub

For regular readers of my blog, you will already be aware of my conscious effort to take better care of my skin. Earlier this week, I posted about Sknfed’s Cleansing and Exfoliating Cubes.

In the same Cruelty Free Beauty Box I received in December, there was a bag of Delhicious Body’s Hello Beau-Tea-Ful Body Scrub.

The packaging is very enticing and all the gold foil is beautiful. I’m not going to lie, it’s not the most practical of packaging. When I’m having a shower, the last thing I want to do is try to open a bag with wet hands.

Once you finally get the bag open, you’re greeted with the gorgeous smell of tea leaves. If tea is not to your liking, I don’t really recommend these scrubs as the smell is quite pungent, but as a tea lover… It’s a completely different story!

Like most of other scrubs, you apply to to wet skin and rub all over. This scrub was much messier than the Sknfed cubes, but did a great job. It did the job and I felt well scrubbed afterwards. I didn’t feel as soft and moisturised as I did after using the Sknfed cubes, but this is still a great scrub.

If you’re looking for a good exfoliating scrub for a good price and tea is right up your street, then this product is definitely for you. It smells great and the product does a great job of exfoliating your skin. I may not be rushing to buy it again, but I wouldn’t turn my nose up at it!

If you’re anything like me and you’d prefer a more indulgent product and with more convenient packaging, read my post about the Sknfed Cleansing and Exfoliating Cubes!

Sknfed Cleansing and Exfoliating Cubes

I’m trying to get into more regular good skin habits which includes exfoliating and moisturising my skin more regularly. In the last Cruelty Free Beauty Box I received, there were Sknfed Cleansing and Exfoliating Cubes.

They came in a cute little cardboard pot with a lid, and when I opened them, the smell that came out was absolutely divine. They smelt delicious, but I can’t imagine that eating them would be safe!

I finally got round to use them last week and they were so easy to use. It is recommended to use 1 – 2 cubes over your body and I ended up using 2.

It was really easy to crumble and scrub all over my skin, and the smell was absolutely gorgeous. It had a delicious chocolate and coffee smell to it, and what I really loved about the cubes is that they were so easy to wash off, but it left my skin feeling moisturised and soft.

The cubes didn’t last particularly well in transit as you can see from the image above as a few of them have broken and crumbled. It’s not a problem as they crumble when you use them anyway!

Sknfed are a completely vegan brand, creating natural, cruelty free skincare products. You can read about them on their website here.

I cannot recommend these exfoliating cubes enough. They are so easy to use and smell so good. They feel like an incredible treat for your body with the benefit of cleansed and soft skin at the end of it. Honestly, I love them and I’ll definitely be buying them again!

Valentine’s Day: The Vegan Bakes

Boy did good this year. Instead of buying me flowers, he came up with the baked goods.

I received a missed parcel note from Royal Mail last week, and unusually they left it with a neighbour instead of taking it back to the depot. I had no idea what the parcel was as I hadn’t done any online shopping recently! I knocked next door and they handed me a parcel addressed to me labelled perishable…

I opened the parcel and was greeted with a red tissue wrapped box with a ‘The Vegan Bakes’ sticker on top. Contained inside underneath more red tissue paper was a cheesy note from Tom and the goods themselves!

It was filled with beautifully presented baked goods which included chocolate brownies, cake pops and cookies. In this Valentine’s box, everything came in pairs which was ideal for sharing! I’m not normally a sharer but under these circumstances I thought I should.

We started with the cake pops which looked amazing. They were absolutely gorgeous and dusted with gold. It was a red velvet cake covered in white chocolate and was absolutely divine. The cake was moist and the chocolate wasn’t too thick which made it nice and easy to eat.

We then had the cookies for breakfast, and again, they were delicious. Not hard or soft with the perfect crunch on the outside of the cookie. They were filled with so many chocolate chunks and the actual cookie was the size of my hand.

At the time of me writing this blog post, we have not yet tried the brownies, but based on how incredible the cake pops and cookies were, I’m sure we will not be disappointed.

Visit The Vegan Bakes website to see their full range of products because there is so much available. They do gift boxes as well as bespoke cakes, and of course, they are all vegan. So have a browse and try them out!

Self Care Sundays: Issue 8

Another Sunday has come around, and another pampering and relaxation session.

I’m still making my way through my Christmas Lush haul and the Pixi FortifEYE patches which you can read about here.

Here is what I used this week…

Lush Snowman Dreaming Bath Bomb

This was a lovely simple bath bomb with gorgeous smells and colours. Lush described it the scents as lavender and cedarwood oil. I smelt lavender and the smell wasn’t over-powering and overwhelming.

It was an incredibly relaxing smell and it was nice to soak into. A lovely post-Christmas treat!

Lush Candy Cane Bubble Bar

As much as I love a bath bomb, I really love bubbles. I think I’m going to have to start giving up on bath bombs and only buying bubble bars.

When I topped up the bath with some more hot water, I decided to fill the bath with my beloved bubbles so I used the Candy Cane reusable bubble bar.

You simply run it under water and let it produce all the bubbles you want. It leaves you with a lovely, bubbly and red bath smelling of lemon and bergamot.

I would definitely recommend a bubble bar. It’s so nice to have bubbles and it makes it feel like a real bath! Lush have a huge range of bubble bars so have a browse online.

Self Care Sundays: Issue 7

January has come to an end and I’m still slowly making my way through the Christmas Lush haul that I received, so here’s another edition of Self Care Sundays with more wonderful Lush products!

As we move into a new month of 2020, it’s important to keep taking time to relax and recharge for your own health and benefit.

Along with my usual bath products, I’m still making my way through the Pixi FortifEYE patches and the Sand & Sky Pink Clay Mask which you can read about in my previous Self Care Sundays post.

Rose Jam Bubble Bar

I loved the Rose Jam bubble bar. It’s bright pink and smells fantastic, as well as covering my fingers with glitter!

It didn’t take long to dissolve and fill the bath full of gorgeous scents and amazing bubbles. Some rose scents can be really overwhelming, but the scent of this bubble bar isn’t strong and was really relaxing to be in. I must have spent almost 2 hours in the bath, enjoying my relaxation time.

Lush have hit it out of the park with this bubble bar. It is easily one of my favourite ones so far and more importantly, it is still available to buy on their website.

At £4.95 a pop, it’s not the cheapest bath product out there so it’s definitely a once in a while treat, but it’s definitely worth it.

Kat Von D ‘XO Vinyl’ Lip Cream

It’s been a long time since I’ve used a lip gloss. I don’t generally get along with them as I find them sticky and heavy.

As always… along came Kat Von D Beauty and their brand new products… The ‘XO Vinyl’ lip cream. It was announced before Christmas and came to the UK in the new year. Of course, I treated myself to some new make up… because I have no restraint!

I bought 2 in colours Carnation and Lolita. Both are more neutral ‘nude’ shades, with Carnation a little on the pinker side than Lolita.

The packaging is beautiful. It has the classic Kat Von D gothic lettering which makes it stand out on your dressing table, as well as showing off the gorgeous colour.

I am not going to deny that I am a huge Kat Von D Beauty fan, but I’m not exaggerating when I say I love this new product. I’m pictured above with the XO Vinyl Lip Cream in Carnation on, and it’s such a flattering shade of pink. I can imagine it looks great on different skin tones.

It has the perfect amount of shine to it and doesn’t have that horrible, thick, sticky feeling that I know a lot of lip glosses have. It dries quickly and feels incredibly lightweight.

I found that the staying power was much better than most lip glosses but didn’t have the same staying power as the Everlasting Lipstick which I was expecting.

As a summary, I would absolutely recommend the XO Vinyl Lip Cream. It comes in 6 different shades and the quality of the lip gloss is amazing. As I mentioned above, it’s lightweight and the colour is flattering. I wore it all night, have a few drinks and some buffet food and it was still on by the end of the night.

If you can go check it out for yourself before buying, you definitely should! It will take no convincing from me as the product will speak for itself.

Planning a Vegan Wedding: Issue 1

So for those of you who follow my blog more closely, you’ll know that Tom and I are planning our wedding! With it only being 18 months away now, I thought I’d start the Wedding Planning blog issues.

Issue 1, we’ll start with our venue hunt!

Tom has always had his heart set on getting married in the Gower, or at least close to the water. We find the water so calming and it’s the perfect back drop for us.

Ocean View Gower

In October 2019, the first venue we went to see was Ocean View Gower. The views here were absolutely breathtaking and it was a lovely venue. It was Emma who showed us around the venue and she was really nice and so helpful. You could do so much with the venue and it gives that lovely rustic feel.

They took us on a golf cart round the corner to their little camping village where they had a few pods where wedding guests could stay. The Bridal Suite was a gorgeous, larger version of the other pods.

The only thing that really deterred me from this venue (besides the dates available) was that it was on a working farm. As a vegan, I can’t support the industry and knowing that’s where my money would be going.

Oldwalls Gower

We went on a tour of Oldwalls directly after our visit to Ocean View and we fell in love with it. We put a deposit down there and then and we haven’t looked back since. Oldwalls was a little more polished that Ocean View and as a dedicated wedding venue, the services they provide were exactly what we were looking for.

It was a more polished version of Ocean View, but the price does reflect that. They have a lot of onsite accommodation which is really helpful for us as we’ll have a lot of guests who’ll want to stay. In addition to this, they have a gorgeous glamping village with lots of glamping pods for even more guests to stay in! All the guests that stay will also have breakfast included so it’ll be nice the following morning to have breakfast with our overnight guests.

Tom’s sister got married at Fairyhill last month which is the sister venue of Oldwalls. You can read my blog post about it here. The most important thing to us was having a vegan wedding. Oldwalls were more than happy to accommodate that with no problems. This included all the food, as well as the drinks.

Oldwalls hold showcases throughout the year so I recommend following them on social media to keep an eye out for them. Fairyhill will usually hold showcases on the same day so as you’re in the area, you may as well go and see both!

We’re really excited to keep moving with the planning. We should be invited for a food tasting this year, approximately a year before the wedding. Keep an eye out for that blog post in the future!

Self Care Sundays: Issue 6

January always feels like a slow month. After the Christmas rush, it’s important to take a beat and relax.

I’ve been back at work for a full week now and getting back into routine is exhausting! So finally it’s the end of the week and before the week starts all over again, I treated myself to a nice long bath and face mask.

Luxury Lush Pud

The first of my Christmas bath bombs to be used, I have 2 Luxury Lush Puds so to make my way through them, why not start with the duplicate. It’s colours enticed me too to be honest.

The bath bomb had a lovely scent and fizzed away nicely and made some lovely colours in the bath. I have to admit, I did add some bubbles by running the Candy Cane bubble bar under the tap for a few minutes.

A plain bath is not sufficient anymore, I always have to have a bath bomb or bubble bar to keep me entertained as I only ever bathe instead of shower to relax.

Sand & Sky Australian Pink Clay Mask

I wrote about this clay mask a few weeks ago which you can read about here.

I am noticing improvements to my pores and skin after each use but whether that’s due to the mask specifically or the other skin products I’m using is hard to tell.

It’s a nice, but very expensive treat to have. There are many dupes out there that can be bought now so I think after this pot is finished, I’ll definitely be trying a cheaper dupe to see how that fares.

Pixi FortifEYE Patches

I do love these Pixi FortifEYE patches. They’re so easy to use and there’s so many of them in the pot that they’ll last me a while.

My only minor issue with them is that the shape of them doesn’t quite fit with my face shape. It’s a minor annoyance that I can live with and the soothing benefits outweigh it.