Tuesday, 28 June 2011

I Want Never Gets... Dresses

This week's wishlist isn't based on not being able to afford the items I've posted, but rather not having the right body shape to be able to pull them off.
This gorgeous 70s style mini dress is right on target in terms of my current fascination with 70s fashion, but unfortunately the high neck means me and my amble bosom would not be welcome in it. £28 Linky!
Again with the boob-issues. If I had a smaller chest I would SO rock this adorable retro peter pan collar dress. Alas I shall instead just post about it, in the hopes that one of you lovely ladies gets inspired and purchases it instead! A bit steep at £45, but I think its a worthwhile investment as its a style that will come back season after season. Linky!

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Barry M Lipstick Haul

To continue along the theme of last week's post on E.L.F. lipsticks, I thought I'd do a post on my collection from Barry M. I've mentioned a couple of these lipsticks in separate posts before but I think it'll be useful to have them all in one place.
First is the Barry M 'Lip Lacquer Crayon' in shade No.1. This is my single most favourite lip colour to wear on a night out - its so highly pigmented, shimmery and bright its perfect. It stays on for a good 4-5 hours without reapplication, doesn't dry out the lips and is nice and small to fit in your clutch.
When the colour starts to run out on this crayon you simply sharpen it with an eyeliner sharpener and... voila! Fresh colour to use! It's ridiculously good value for money as I've not had to sharpen mine yet and have used it quite a bit since buying it a few months ago. £4.99 from BootsLinky!
I also have 4 'Lip Paints' by Barry M. From left -> right shades 53, 121, 150 & 152.
Here are the lipsticks swatched in the same order. I find these Lip Paints SO GOOD for their high pigmentation, and shade 121 is my all time favourite pillar box red lipstick. I call it my 'Blondie' lipstick, for obvious reasons! However I have to say, I do find these lipsticks dry out my lips quite a bit and so as a result I have to reapply with a layer of lipbalm and then lip colour on top quite frequently, maybe every 1-2 hours depending on the colour. Shades 53 and 150 are brilliant to wear for the daytime though, and I love how subtle they are against my pale skin!
Barry M Lip Paints are £4.49 from BootsLinky!

Saturday, 25 June 2011

I work hard, every day of my life..

I've bought a few bits and pieces for my ever-expanding work wardrobe recently. Enjoy!
First up is this cute cream pussybow blouse from ASOS. I've been after a short sleeved neutral blouse for a while as I have a few patterned suits and skirts that I can't wear patterned tops with - this one fit the bill perfectly and luckily flatters my usually difficult shape! Bonus that its 100% cotton! I got it on offer for £20. Linky!
I love this quirky apple print blouse by Mango! The pattern is quite unique and it looks great tucked into a pencil skirt or over some wide leg or cigarette trousers. Simple way to inject a bit of my personality into my workwear! It was a little more expensive, but I managed to get some pennies off and bought it for £31 from ASOSLinky!
Last but not least is this cute little red linen pencil skirt. I loved the way the model on the ASOS website teamed this with a simple white blouse and black court shoes - very chic, I hope to replicate the look! I was tempted to buy this skirt in other colours because it fit so nicely, most notably 'Pecan', but I managed to restrain myself! I got it for £22. Linky!

Friday, 24 June 2011

I'm leaving, on a jet plane...

Afternoon lovely readers! If you've been reading Bee's Knees for a while you may have noticed the occasional reference to upcoming European travels this summer! I thought I'd do a little post to fill you in on where I'm going, when, and what will happen here while I'm away!
I'm going interrailing around different parts of Europe with my best friend. (Click here for more information on interrailing.) We leave on the 13th of July and fly to Berlin in Germany, and we've booked our flight home from Venice in Italy on the 7th of August! So in total that's 26 days of exploration and relaxation(!) around some of the best places in Europe!
We will be travelling from: Berlin -> Prague -> Munich -> Innsbruck -> Vienna -> Budapest -> Split -> Dubrovnik -> Lljublana -> Bled -> Venice ... and home!
^ this is just a teeny tiny glimpse of my rucksack and some of the bits and bobs I'm taking with me, stay tuned for more posts on my European wardrobe and travelling essentials!
I've been hard at work making sure my time away doesn't affect Bee's Knees too much, and I've got plenty of scheduled posts lined up to keep you busy while I'm gone, including regulars like 'I Want Never Gets' and 'Fabulous Nails'. I hope you enjoy them and will be waiting for me when I get back!
Do you have any exciting plans for the summer? Where is your favourite holiday destination in Europe or elsewhere?

REMINDER: My MUA lipstick giveaway ends tonight at midnight so if you haven't entered yet, click the tab at the top of the page now!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

REMINDER: MUA Lipstick Giveaway

Just a quick reminder that my MUA lipstick giveaway ends TOMORROW - so if you haven't entered yet then click HERE for more information! It's quick and easy to enter, and my giveaway is open to all readers wherever you might be in the world! Good luck.

Hope you're having a good week everyone!

Elspeth xxx

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

I Want Never Gets... Marc Jacobs

Continuing my new weekly feature, I thought it'd be fun to alternate between designer and high street wish lists. Obviously one is more attainable than the other, but where's the harm in dreaming? As you already know, I'm a devoted worshipper at the Marc Jacobs altar when it comes to fragrance, however I'm also a fan of his general design ability.
I especially adore Marc by Marc Jacobs bags - I'm head over heels with this gorgeous (non-leather, of course!) bright tote! Linky!
Some of Marc Jacobs' dresses are of another world. This gorgeous floral chiffon dress is an example. In my head I'm the kind of girl who can afford beautiful statement dresses like this one, and actually has events to be able to wear them to! Linky!
Another to-die-for example is this stunning little chiffon number. But would you believe this is a JUMPSUIT?! I am not a fan of jumpsuits, I really think its a look 99.9% of ordinary girls will struggle and eventually fail to pull off, and it makes me cringe to see them try! But this absolutely divine piece is an example of when jumpsuits can be elegant, classy and just oh-so-chic. I love the blend of colours, especially with the gold accent at the waist. I'm salivating.. Linky!

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Soap & Glory Haul

I received a MASSIVE gift box full of Soap & Glory goodies at Christmas and I was OVER THE MOON! I not only love these products for their cute packaging, divine smell and wonderful ethics but also their fun pun names! I thought it'd be nice to do a post on my favourite S&G products to maybe introduce newbies to the brand, or encourage existing fans to try new products.
Up first is the best value S&G product ever, 'Clean on Me' shower wash. It's difficult to tell in this photo, but you actually get 500ml of product when you buy it full sized. This is enough to last ~10 months, if you use 2x pumps of wash everyday in the shower. This is my favourite shower product - it smells SO good, and has moisturiser in it to help combat dry skin. £5.11 from Boots.
Here is 'Flake Away', an exfolliant you use on your wet legs to get them gleamingly sexy and smooth. I alternate between using this product and 'The Breakfast Scrub' (see below), and I have to say this one isn't my favourite of the two. I think its probably down to personal preference but I find this one a bit more difficult to use and I'm not a big fan of the texture. It definitely does the job though, and leaves your pins divinely exfoliated and smooth. £6.64 from Boots.
This is 'The Breakfast Scrub'. I look forward to my weekly shower when I get to rub this into my arms, legs and tummy for 5mins because it smells absolutely delicious. I wish S&G would make some sort of edible version of this because it seriously seems good enough to eat! I prefer this to 'Flake Away' as I think its a bit more oily so it feels like its not just scrubbing my legs but also conditioning them at the same time. £9.45 from Boots.
And now for what I slather on my legs after all that exfoliating - 'The Righteous Butter'. My all time favourite body butter I adore the smell, consistency, just everything about this! I've used loads of different body butters in the past but I find this one sinks into the skin easily and leaves me smelling delicious. You get a massive tub for your money and this one has lasted me 5 months of slathering it on in copious amounts once or twice a week. £10.21 from Boots.
Also in my shower bundle is 'Glad Hair Day', a S&G shampoo! I have to say that I'm blessed with good hair naturally, so I'm off to a running start but this shampoo really adds shine and bounce to my curls and helps tame frizz. Simple really. Not sure whether I'll repurchase this as I see S&G more as a skincare company, and there are so many shampoo options. It's good value though, at £5.22 for 250ml from Boots.
On to facial skincare, I use this 'Scrub Your Nose in it' once a week in place of my usual, gentler exfoliator. I find this gives my skin a good scrub without being too harsh (I'm quite sensitive) and leaves me feeling fresh, clean and glowing! £7.40 from Boots.
I also use the 'Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser' once a week in place of my Liz Earle cleanser, to mix things up a bit. I find this a bit more intensive than my usual cleanser, and just as effective at removing make up (including eye make up!). £9.19 from Boots.
 I also use the 'Fab Pore Facial Peel' on my face once a week. I'm quite self conscious about the large pores on my face, especially around my nose area, but using this makes me feel much better and I honestly think it's made a difference. It has tiny beads and a clay-like substance that you rub onto your face until the beads have all dissolved into your face, and then leave for 15mins to give a really good thorough cleanse. An essential, in my opinion. £7.15 from Boots, my tub has lasted me almost a year now!
For my hands, S&G have produced the single greatest hand cream I have ever experienced, 'Hand Food'. This stuff's so good I've got my entire family using it, after letting my mum borrow mine for a week she was quickly converted! It's got so many lovely things in it, like shea butter and marshmallows, and again - smells AMAZING. Mine has lasted me using it at least once a day for 5 months now! £4.85 from Boots.
& to finish with a make up product, I'd like to introduce you to 'Sexy Mother Pucker'. If you're a lip gloss fan, this product will change your life. It's amazing. You put it on your lips and they instantly start to tingle, as the product makes your lips feel and appear bigger - whilst at the same time providing a luscious, slightly tinted, gloss. I use this on nights out when I want a more natural look but still need to feel glammed up! I've yet to find a product that does the same job. £8.43 from Boots.

I hope you've enjoyed this MEGA Soap & Glory haul review! Of course, Boots aren't the only place you can buy S&G from (ASOS also sell selected products), but I found it the easiest place to cite prices from. The Boots website's S&G selection is available here.

Saturday, 18 June 2011

I work all night, I work all day, to pay the bills..

I've bought a few staples for my work wardrobe recently that I've been looking forward to sharing with you.
First up is this cute basic black belted cardigan from Mango. I tried on about 2 dozen different black cardigans in my pursuit of the perfect one and finally settled on this, for several reasons. Firstly, it's 95% cotton which means it won't bobble (I HATE it when that happens!) Secondly, its got a belt which means I can wear it over a pencil skirt and pull it in at the waist to maintain a nice silhouette. Thirdly & finally, it has POCKETS! I'm eternally craving pockets to put my bits and bobs in, so this will definitely prove useful at work. A relative bargain at just under £25, I'm sure I'll get plenty of wear out of this wardrobe staple.
This is an adorable blue cowl neck vest from H&M. I fell in love at first sight with the colour of this top, and when I tried it on and it was a perfect fit I was delighted! Ridiculously good value for money at £7.99, it's made from a lovely soft jersey material making it ideal for teaming with a skirt in the summer months.
Also from H&M is this basic black pencil skirt. I'm a bit of a funny shape when it comes to pencil skirts, and often find the high street doesn't make the waist measurement small enough to fit me, but this one slipped right on and fit like a glove! It's made of a really nice suit-like material, which is a pleasant surprise as it was only £14.99!
From Mango at ASOS is this brown belted skirt which I bought in the sale. I really love the warm tone of this skirt, which I think makes it ideal for wearing in either summer or winter, as it'd look equally nice with tan or black tights! A steal at £24, this is a stylish update for my work wardrobe! Linky!
Finally, I also bought this linen pencil skirt from ASOS for £24! This one's a bit of a longer length which is nice as for more important business meetings I sometimes feel a bit 'young' when I'm wearing an above the knee skirt. It's a lovely snug fit and gorgeous linen material, and fits me perfectly! Linky!

What are your work wardrobe staples? Do you have a particular skirt length you prefer on those power dressing days?

Friday, 17 June 2011

E.L.F. lipstick haul

You're probably aware by now that I have a bit of an obsession with lipsticks, and E.L.F. selling them for £1.50 a pop isn't exactly helping the situation! Here is a post on my collection of lipsticks from E.L.F.
This is a Liquid Lipstick in shade 'Ruby Slipper'. The E.L.F. liquid lipsticks are a brilliant product to use if you're a fan of lip gloss & want a bit more colour, but don't want to commit to a high maintenance standard lipstick. They have lots of different colours to choose from, to suit every skin tone.
The lipstick works by twisting the bottom end so the product comes out onto the top brush which you use to accurately and easily apply it to your lips! I really love this as it doesn't dry your lips out in the slightest.
This is shade 'Brownie Points', which is think is a bit too dark and brown-toned for my skintone.
My favourite is this one - 'Pink Lemonade'. Its a playful pink that isn't too Barbie-like to wear so you can still be taken seriously. Overall the liquid lipsticks are a great, cheap solution for those fashionistas who want lip gloss and lipstick in one easy to use product. £1.50 each from http://www.eyeslipsface.co.uk.
I also have 2 'normal' E.L.F. lipsticks in my collection. This one is shade 'Gyspy' and is a gorgeous deep pink that's just perfect for a night out or daytime wear alike! 
This shade is 'Classy', and it a bit lighter and more neutral toned. This shade is perfect for my skin tone and I constantly received compliments whenever I wear it! I like the simple silver packaging for these lipsticks, as although it doesn't look particularly high end, you are only paying £1.50 so can't expect miracles.
Here is a swatch of the two lipsticks. 'Gypsy' is on the left and 'Classy' is on the right. I find these lipsticks don't need reapplying very often, once every 3-4 hours is usually more than sufficient. If you combine them with a bit of lip balm then they also don't dry out your lips, but I have to say that they're not the most moisturising or conditioning lip colours I've used.

Overall I definitely recommend them though, as for the price there's few other places you can get such good value! £1.50 each from http://www.eyeslipsface.co.uk.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

I Want Never Gets... Swimwear

I'm aware that a lot of fashion bloggers regularly post about their wishlists, and I thought I'd have a go at doing the same! Enter my new feature: 'I Want Never Gets...'! This week I'm lusting after swimwear - ideal as it's June now so coming up to the summer holiday season! Plus I do need to invest in some new swimwear for my fast-approaching European travels!
First up is this sensational daisy print 50s style swimsuit from Kelly Brook at New Look. With the exception of the cringe-inducing swimsuits of my pre-adolescent years, I'm not much of a swimsuit girl but I love the print of this one, and the halterneck! I'm also won around by the idea of covering my tum in the event of the onset of embarrassing holiday bloat, brought on by too many cocktails and greasy chips! £24.99 from New Look Linky!

Also from Kelly Brook at New Look is this adorable monochrome sailor-style bikini! I love the simplicity of this bikini, and the subtle injection of personality from the cute bows! A bit steep price-wise: £16.99 for the top (linky) and £8.99 for the bottoms (linky) but you could easily just buy the top and match it with some cheaper plain black bikini bottoms.
A suspiciously similar bikini is this sailor-themed one from La Senza. I bought my first ever bikini from La Senza and still have it to this day (6 years on - wow!) which is a testament to the quality of their swimwear. This delightfully nautical bikini will set you back £22.00 for the bikini top and either £12.00 or £14.00 depending on whether you select the matching bikini briefs or shorts. Linky!
Have you got any summer holidays booked? Where's your favourite place to shop for swimwear?

Monday, 13 June 2011

Sleek Make Up Haul

I bought a Sleek 12 shade eyeshadow palette a few months ago, and have used it quite a bit since. However I also recently received a bundle of Sleek goodies as a free gift for subscribing to Glamour magazine, so thought I'd do a bigger haul review and share my opinions on the various products with you.
Here's the eyeshadow palette I already have and use. As you can see, its mostly neutral tones with a black and a couple of blues thrown in for good measure. I find this a very useful everyday palette and I've used some of the neutrals quite a few times. I find the darker shades very pigmented which means you don't have to load much product onto your brush, but they also blend well which means you can mix shades up easily without much fuss or mess. The palette was £6.49 from SuperdrugLinky!
This is the palette I received free from Glamour. Much brighter shades here, and I absolutely adore the bright orange and blue! I also really like the reddish tones, and look forward to blending them into more neutral shades to create a glamourous, diva-style night eye. I've heard that red tones suit grey/green eyes, which is ideal for me! 
I was lucky enough to also receive this fabulous little pot of 'Pout Polish' in Pink Cadillac. This is a lip gloss style product that is quite heavily tinted and also contains spf 15. I think this is a super gloss as it gives a gorgeous pinky sheen and is easy to reapply with your finger or a lip brush. The added spf protection is a massive bonus, as I'm always conscious of the damage the sun can do to your lips if you don't take precautions. This polish also smells divine! At only £4.10, I'd recommend this as a bargain product! Linky!
Next up is the Sleek blush in shade 'Flamingo'. This colour is a teeny bit too bright for me to wear against my porcelain skin but for other skin tones I imagine it's just gorgeous. It gives a lovely rosy glow and is easy to blend into the skin with a blusher brush. At only £4.30 I think this blusher's very good value as you get quite a lot of product and don't need much to get a healthy glow. Linky!
I've definitely saved the best product until last. This is Sleek Eye Dust in 'Breathless'. I think this is a very good effort by the company to copy the infamous Barry M Glitter Dust, and in my opinion its definitely just as fabulous if not more! You get a bigger pot for starters, which obviously means better value.
As you can see, the dust is quite nicely pigmented and gives an absolutely stunning shimmer of colour. Superb to blend and showstoppingly bright, I adore this eyeshadow and can't wait to have a suitable event to wear it to! £3.05 from Superdrug, it's a real bargain. Linky!
Don't forget to enter my MUA lipstick giveaway! Click the link at the top of the page for more information on how to enter.