Beauty

October Favourites

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I know I say it every month but hasn’t another month flown by? October went by in a flash and 2017 is quickly disappearing. I started October off by spending a long weekend in Cornwall for my birthday. The weather wasn’t very good but we still had a great time. The rest of October consisted of tidying up the flat and a spending ban! I haven’t done a favourites post in a while and as I love Autumn I thought it was high time I did another one. So without anymore waffling here are my October favourites…

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Firstly I’ll start off with an eyeshadow palette that seems to have been dominating Instagram since it’s launch this Summer; of course I’m talking about the much anticipated Naked Heat palette by Urban Decay. The Naked eyeshadow palettes are the most searched for palettes in the world so it made sense that Naked Heat would set hearts alite with lust when it launched. The palette contains 12 amped up shades from burnt oranges to rich reds and sizzling bronzes. Naked Heat has received high praise largely due to the fact that the shades seem to suit everyone. I have dark blonde hair & very fair skin, so I worried that these shades may look too intense on me but I’m glad to report I was wrong. I haven’t worn eyeshadows as warm as this before as I thought they wouldn’t suit me but I love this palette. Naked Heat is the warmest of all the Naked palettes & most of the other Naked palettes have mostly cool toned eyeshadows (which I also love). As with all eyeshadows there was some fall out when I pressed the shadows onto my eyes but not too much. As you’d expect from Urban Decay, each eyeshadow in this palette is very pigmented & lasts all day. The shades in this palette are perfect for Autumn.

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The other eyeshadow palette I haven’t been able to put down is the Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette. I was very late to the party with this palette but I’m so glad I finally managed to get my hands on it. The packaging of the palette looks like a chocolate bar & the eyeshadows smell like chocolate too! The palette features 16 candy inspired shades from subtle browns to pretty neutrals and sweet pops of colour. The shadows feel really buttery & don’t crease either. The formula is long lasting too. This palette has a mixture of shimmer & matte shades, which I love. The palette comes with a leaflet showing you how to create three different looks.

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I’m sure you’ve seen and heard all the hype over the Lush Sleepy body lotion. I heard all the rave reviews but I wasn’t convinced. I’ve been tempted into buying hypped up products before that have let me down so I needed convincing. I went into the Lush shop in Bristol with no intention of buying this body lotion but after being given a delightful demonstration by one of the Lush assistants I knew I had to buy a tub. The lotion has a lovely thick & creamy texture as well as smelling dreamy and devine. The scent is a mixture of lavender, oatmeal and cocoa butter. The formula is really nourishing and leaves my skin feeling silky soft. The product definitely helped me to feel more relaxed at bedtime & I do feel like I slept better when I used it. Sleepy has helped me a lot when I’m struggling to sleep due to chronic pain & I’m sure I’ll be buying it again. An added bonus of Lush products is that they are made in England, they’re not tested on animals and they’re suitable for vegans too!

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Another bodycare treat I’ve been loving is the vanilla pumpkin body butter from The Body Shop. Anyone who follows me on Instagram will know how much I love body butters. They all have a magnificently rich, creamy, soft & buttery texture that helps to eliminate dry skin without feeling heavy or oily on the skin. Plus I love the wide range of different scents available. So when The Body Shop launched a new scent in September I knew I had to try it. I got vanilla pumpkin for my birthday at the end of September & I’ve been using it ever since. As with all The Body Shop products, the body butters aren’t tested on animals. The smell of vanilla pumpkin is quite sweet & reminds me of baking; the perfect Autumn/Winter scent.

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Recently I’ve been suffering with dry cracked hands & I’ve tried countless products but the L’Occitane shea butter handcream is the only one that has actually helped. The fragrance in other handcreams just made my hands more itchy & red but not this one. The formula is nice & thick as well as being creamy. My hands don’t feel sticky or greasy after use. The high concentration of shea butter in this handcream (20%) is one of the main reasons why it is so effective.

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I love it when a beauty product not only delivers on its promises but if it’s a bargain too then that’s fantastic! The Superdrug own brand hair therapy oil with argan is exactly that. This oil is not only a bargain but it’s also cruelty free and suitable for vegans too. To use this oil I just rub a small amount (1-2 pumps) into the palm of my hand then I smooth the oil through mid lengths and ends of my hair. The oil can be used on damp or dry hair. The multipurpose oil helps to reduce heat damage & frizz as well as conditioning the hair. The bottle claims to reduce drying time by 40%. I can’t say whether my drying time was reduced by 40% or not but my hair definitely did dry quicker. My hair looks healthier and shinier after every application. A 50ml bottle of this oil cost me less than Β£3!

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No matter what the season I seem to always have dark circles under my eyes. I’ve tried many different things to get rid of them but nothing completely gets rid of them. I usually get a good nights sleep but even that doesn’t seem to reduce those pesky dark circles. I came across the Origins GinZing eyecream in a bundle offer & was so impressed that I ended up buying it separately. The effects of this eyecream are instant as well as improving with each use. The pale pink cream is gentle enough for my sensitive skin yet powerful enough to depuff and brighten the under eye area. This eyecream won’t completely erase your dark circles but it will definitely help to blur them & stop them from being so prominent.

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Thank you for reading & I hope you enjoyed my October favourites. What products have you been loving recently?

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Beauty

Becca under eye brightening corrector

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When I posted a photo of the Becca under eye brightening corrector recently, I received many comments asking about this product so I thought I’d write a mini review.

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One of my main skin concerns is dark circles under my eyes. I’ve tried so many different products that claim to help but unfortunately most of them fail to live up to their own claims. This under eye corrector from Becca is one of the few products that actually helps.

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The corrector is pale pink in colour & has a creamy texture. The product feels nice around the eyes & doesn’t dry my skin out. I’m pleased to report that the product doesn’t settle into fine lines around the eyes either.

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The packaging of the product is very sleek & compact. I love the rose gold colour of the lid. It’s lightweight too, making the product ideal for travel & already bulging makeup bags!

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I got this product as part of a value set but the RRP of this product individually is Β£22, which in my opinion is rather expensive, especially for the small size (4.5g). However, I’ve been unable to find a good high street alternative so for now this is the best the industry has to offer.

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Thanks for reading! Let me know what you use to help combat dark circles in the comments.

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Beauty

L’OrΓ©al Pure Clay Face Masks

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I have a confession to make. I love face masks. I have tried so many & love how they make my skin feel. They can make such a massive difference to your skin if you pick the right one.

When I first heard about the new range of clay face masks from L’OrΓ©al I was really excited to try them. I love that their new range caters for a whole host of skin concerns including blemishes, oiliness and dullness.

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There are five different masks in the new collection & each one contains three pure clays along with other carefully selected ingredients. The three pure clays that all the masks contain are: kaolin, montmorillonite and ghassoul. These ingredients help to eliminate impurities, absorb excess sebum, eliminate imperfections and clarify the skin.

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The first mask I tried from this collection was the detox mask. The mask is black due to the fact it contains charcoal, which acts like a magnet to draw out impurities. The mask has a creamy texture & cleanses deep down into the skin to clear pores and detoxify the skin. I was really impressed with this mask as my pores were noticeably smaller. My skin felt so clean & wasn’t dried out.

As I was suffering from a break out on my chin, I thought it was a good time to try the blemish rescue mask. This mask contains marine algae extract, which is known for it’s anti-blemish properties. The mask targets deep down into the pores, to unclog blackheads & clear imperfections. My skin was left feeling fresh, pure and soft.

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I have a combination/oily complexion so any product that promises to reduce excess sebum is always high on my list to try. The purity mask also has a creamy texture & contains eucalyptus extract, which is known for it’s purifying properties. After using this mask my skin felt mattified without feeling dried out.

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My skin is often left looking dull so I was excited to try the glow and bright masks from the range. Both masks are very similar. The texture of both is grainy & not as creamy as the other masks. The masks work by exfoliating the skin to remove dead skin cells and reveal brighter, more radiant skin. My skin did look brighter & more glowy after each use. If you like the Origins original skin retexturizing mask then these two are great budget alternatives.

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Overall I’m really pleased with all these masks. They all had a pleasant smell & had a positive impact on my skin. I will continue to use them & I’m sure I’ll be repurchasing. The masks retail at approximately Β£10 each but I got mine on offer for Β£7 each.

Thank you for reading. Let me know what your favourite face masks are.

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Beauty

July GlossyBox

I’ve been a loyal GlossyBox subscriber for over two years now and in that time I’ve received amazing boxes, good boxes and less than average boxes, but I’d say most were at least good. I was particularly impressed with this month’s offering so I thought I’d share a review with you.

The actual box that the five beauty products arrive in is usually a light pink colour with bold black writing on but I like it when GlossyBox do one off boxes. This month we received a one off box called “Hello Summer”. The design is very simple yet so pretty. I love the font they’ve used.

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The first product I noticed in the box is definitely a new favourite; the Spectrum small fan A10 brush. I’ve used Spectrum brushes before but I’ve never tried their fan brush before & I love it. On first impressions the brush looks so pretty & feels so soft. It looks like the sort of brush a unicorn or mermaid might use. This brush applies highlighter like a dream & now I won’t be able to apply highlighter without a fan brush. The fan brush can also be used for dusting on face powder. One of the best things about Spectrum brushes is that all brushes are cruelty free.

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As soon as I discovered spiral hairbands I was hooked. They are so much better than hair elastics or regular hair bands because spiral hairbands don’t damage or pull hair. Anything that prevents breakage and split ends is a winner in my eyes! I was chuffed to find two spiral hairbands in my box from Papanga as I like to keep one in every bag. I love that spiral hairbands come in lots of different colours.

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After sun lotion is an essential in summer time. We all know we should wear sun cream but sometimes we get caught off guard & after sun really helps when your skin is feeling hot and sore. I recommend wearing SPF on your face daily no matter what season it is to avoid premature ageing but if you do get burnt then the MonuSpa soothing after sun lotion in this month’s box can be used on face as well as body. This particular after sun is suitable for all skin types and contains aloe vera, shea butter and vitamin E. It’s also good to know that this product is against animal testing as well as being considerate to the environment and it’s made in the UK. It’s another thumbs up from me, GlossyBox!Β 20170719_113656

Lip balm is a handbag essential at any time of year. The Cutebalms macaroon tint balm in crushed berry doubles up as a cheek tint as well as a lip balm. The deep pink shade looks beautiful on the lips & feels moisturising without being sticky. It smells good enough to eat too!

The final product in this month’s GlossyBox is the Bellapierre banana setting powder. I’ve never tried a banana powder before so was keen to give this a go. Powder has made a comeback recently thanks to beauty bloggers and Youtubers who sparked a facination with the baking makeup trend. I’m yet to try the baking technique but will definitely be giving it a go. This banana setting powder has a yellow hue that helps to counteract redness, discolouration, blemishes and dark circles in paler skin tones & creates beautiful highlights against olive and dark skin tones. Sounds like a multitasking hero product to me! I used this product as a finishing powder over the top of my foundation & concealer. This product is a keeper!

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To read my post about the May 2016 GlossyBox copy this link into the address bar: https://kateiscoveting.wordpress.com/2016/05/16/glossybox-may-2016/

 

 

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Beauty

Spacemasks

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My boyfriend often tells me that I stress & worry too much. He says I need to relax more but that’s much easier said than done! I’m the sort of person who worries that they worry too much! So When the lovely Harriet from Spacemasks offered to send me one of their masks I thought it was well worth trying.

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Spacemasks are eye masks that are intended to aid relaxation. They only have two ingredients (essence of jasmine and iron powder) so you know there aren’t any nasty chemicals lurking inside. To use the mask you simply put it over your eyes and pop the clever little loops over your ears. Within minutes your mask will start heating up ready to relieve tiredness, eye strain and puffy hayfever eyes. The heat will last for roughly 15 minutes but the out of this world calm feeling you feel will last much longer!Β 

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The mask starts to heat up as soon as you open the packet because the oxygen molecules in the atmosphere react with the mask’s iron particles in a natural heat exchange. Proving that beauty and science are perfect partners.

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I used my mask after a particularly hectic day & I must say I was very impressed. The first thing that struck me was the beautiful aroma coming from the mask. It wasn’t an overpowering scent but smelt very soothing & relaxing. It was the kind of scent you might expect to smell at a top spa. I lead down on my sofa as I gently placed the mask on my eyes & fitted the loops around my ears. The heat on my sore eyes felt so soothing and relieved a lot of my hayfever symptoms. Before I knew it I had drifted off to sleep. When I woke up I felt so rested and peaceful. I even slept better that night too.

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Each mask is single use but you don’t necessarily have to throw it away after use as you could use it as a regular eye mask in bed if you don’t already have one.

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It’s safe to say that I really enjoyed using my Spacemask & will definitely end up buying some. If you want to try Spacemasks head to http://www.spacemasks.com The masks are priced at Β£15 for a box of 5.

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Beauty

June Empties

I have never done an empties post before but I’ve been left with a fair few empty bottles this month so I thought I’d try something different.

I’m a firm believer in looking after your skin so I tend to get through quite a few skincare products each month. This month I have two empty bottles of toner and one empty bottle of micellar water. To remove makeup I usually have a quick swipe of an oil based makeup remover (such as Take the day off by Clinique) then I use a micellar water before cleansing with my trusty Cleanse and Polish by Liz Earle to remove all traces of makeup. No panda eyes here!

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My first empty is the Kind to skin micellar cleansing water by Simple. As a teenager I used the Simple cleansing wipes everyday but now that I’m (a little) older I know that wipes don’t do a good enough job so I switched up to the micellar water. This micellar water contains no artificial colours or perfumes plus it does contain multi vitamins so it’s ideal for sensitive skin like mine. I love how simple yet effective this product is; it’s just as easy to use as wipes but much better for your skin & far more effective at removing stubborn makeup. I use this to help remove eye makeup too as I know it won’t sting my eyes. My skin always feels nice & soft after I use it too. I’ve been using this micellar water for many years now & I won’t be stopping any time soon.

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Liz Earle are one of my all time favourite skincare brands & their Instant Boost Skin Tonic is amazing. I get through a lot of this toner and it’s definitely one of my favourite products. The first thing you notice about this toner is the beautiful soft floral scent. It’s heavenly! The product smells very natural & not of chemicals at all. It is also alcohol free, contains no animal extracts & is made here in Great Britain. Liz Earle are famous for using naturally active ingredients & their tonic contains: aloe vera, calendula, cucumber, geranium and vitamin E. All of these are fantastic for the skin and calendula is particularly good for redness & rosacia. Toner is a great step to have in your skincare routine as it helps to prepare the skin for moisturiser plus it removes the last traces of dirt that your cleanser might have missed. The second toner in my stash of empties is the Calming face toner by Naobay. This toner is an eco certified organic product and it’s not tested on animals. I really like the simple packaging of this toner & the wooden lid fits in well with the brand. For the first two weeks I really enjoyed using this toner & was very pleased that it didn’t irritate my sensitive skin. However, by the third week the toner had gone mouldy! Yuck! I read a few online reviews & comments and it turns out this is quite common. If this product had a better shelf life then I’d buy it again but I don’t feel that two weeks is long enough & the fact it went mouldy was really disgusting.

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When I went to Bristol a few weeks ago to buy a hoover I ended up in Lush (as you do), and I was given a sample of their Curly Wurly shampoo. I was given enough for two applications. My first impressions were pretty good. It smells quite tropical & particularly of coconut. The texture is a bit strange compared to other shampoos as it’s much thicker and has coconut flakes in it. The texture is more similar to a body scrub than a regular shampoo. You need to rub the product into your palms before applying to your wet hair. Once the product is in your hair you will need to rub the product quite a lot as it doesn’t lather like other shampoos do. It’s also better to leave this product in your hair for about 10-15 mins before rinsing. I followed these instructions and I did find that this shampoo worked well for my hair type (thick naturally wavy/curly hair). Next time I’m in Lush I might have to pick up the full size!

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Next up is the Batiste light & blonde hint of colour dry shampoo. I prefer this product to regular dry shampoo as it helps lift my natural hair colour and doesn’t leave a grey residue. Dry shampoo is a beauty essential for most of us on those days when there simply isn’t time to wash, dry & style your locks. I love that Batiste is very purse friendly too!

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Ever since Percy & Reed burst onto the hairdressing scene in 2007 I’ve been obsessed with their products. My absolute favourite is their Perfectly Perfecting Wonder Balm. I’ve got through countless tubes of this product & I couldn’t live without it. This product is a leave in balm that preps & primes your hair ready for all your styling products. It gives you more control & results that last longer. I find this product really maximises definition & helps to tame flyaways too.

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Finally, it’s The Breakfast Scrub by Soap & Glory. My favourite things about this scrub are the gorgeous scent of maple and it’s creamy moisturising texture. This tub lasts for ages and makes a real noticeible difference to the skin. My legs & arms feel so soft & smooth after using this. Generally I use a body scrub once a week after shaving to remove dead skin cells. It removes old fake tan too. It’s perfect for Summer when you have to bare those pins!

Thank you for reading! What products have you finished this month?

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Beauty, Fashion

What’s in my handbag?

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We often see headlines shouting facts & figures at us about how carrying too much in our bags is detrimental to our health and specifically to our backs. This is one of the reasons why I started carrying a smaller handbag many years ago & started carrying a LOT less stuff. The other reason was that after my accident I physically couldn’t carry a big heavy handbag anymore. So here’s what’s inside my handbag…

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One of the most important things is my purse. The purse is from Radley & I’ve had it for over 5 years now. I love it so much and I’ll be really sad to see it go when it does eventually give up. The purse has lots of card slots and I’ve managed to use all of them up thanks to my many loyalty cards! Obviously I also keep cash and my debit card in here, which both probably get used more than they should! I always have loads of discount vouchers stuffed in too. It’s safe to say that I’m a sucker for a bargain.

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One of my beauty essentials is my Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream lip balm. I carry it with me everywhere as it’s one of the best lip balms I’ve ever tried. I discovered it after winning one in a competition & I’ve gone on to buy several after that. It has such a moisturising formulation but doesn’t feel sticky plus it’s long lasting too. It’s one of the few lip balms that actually makes a real difference to my lips. The packaging is simple but sleek and it’s really lightweight. The only down side is the price. Unfortunately it is quite expensive but I stock up when it’s on offer.

As well as lip balm I usually carry a lipstick and lipgloss with me too. The shades change depending on my mood and look that day but one of my favourite lipsticks is the Clinique Pop lip colour and primer in 04 Beige Pop. It’s a beautiful pinky nude shade & feels nice on the lips too. The lipgloss in the photo is the Sexy Mother Pucker lipgloss in Rose & Shine by Soap & Glory. The lipgloss is a bit more pink than the lipstick but the two shades go well together. I love the minty fresh scent & tingling feeling you get when you apply this lipgloss.

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Tissues are always useful but never more so than during hayfever season! If like me you find yourself endlessly sneezing then tissues are extremely handy. I picked up a multi pack from Poundland a while ago & they had pictures of Disney Princesses on them; I was thrilled as they satisfied my practical side as well as my childish side that still adores anything Disney!

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The little purse with beach huts on is my pain purse. I use it to hold my painkillers & medication. If you live with a chronic illness you’ll know how important it is to have painkillers to hand at all times. Unbearable pain can strike at any time so it’s important to be prepared! I choose this pretty purse for my pills as it reminds me of happy memories & it’s important to remember the good times when you’re feeling rubbish.

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To my partner & family this isn’t news but I am a little bit OCD about germs & bacteria so I take antibacterial everywhere I go. I know to some this might seem a bit weird but I feel so much more comfortable after I’ve used this gel. This one smells of strawberry laces, so that makes it even more appealing to me.

Now that I’ve started using Invisibobble hair bands I can never go back to using those horrible scratchy things I used to use. Invisibobble hair bands not only look cool & come in a wide range of colours but most importantly they don’t hurt or damage your hair when you take them out.

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As with most millennials I love my phone & I carry this in either my bag or a pocket if I have one. I have the Samsung Galaxy A3 & I love it. It may not be the most hyped up phone but personally I think the camera on it is really good (I take all my blog photos with my phone) plus everything is easy to use. I always carry a pen too as it has proved very useful on many occasions & you never know when you might need it. Keys are also a handbag essential buy there’s not much to say about them!

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Finally, I’d love to talk to you about the actual handbag. It’s so beautiful yet practical at the same time. The bag has 3 different compartments plus smaller zipped compartments too for your phone & keys. The straps are perfect for wearing on your shoulder or carrying in your hand. I don’t currently use this bag everyday as I like to keep it for special occasions. I tend to use it for evening wear & meals out. This bag looks so similar to the Chanel 2.55 yet is just a fraction of the price. I was amazed at the quality of the bag & it has proved to be durable so far. This bag is also available in nude & white and is called Marsaille. To get yours visit http://www.boutiqueofmolly.co.uk and use code KATEISCOVETING20 to get 20% off the entire site!

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What do you have in your handbag? I’d love to know what you buy from Boutique of Molly! Thanks for reading x

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