Last minute Mother’s Day gifts

If you’ve left it a little too long (a little? It’s the day before you idiot?!) to get your dear old mum a present for this Sunday then look no further, I have the ideal gifts certain to put a smile on anyone’s face – particular Mother Dear’s – BUBBLES!

First off, everyone’s favourite kind of bubble – the ones in Champagne.

Canard-Duchêne Authentic Brut Rosé  (£30 available at http://www.oddbins.com) is lovely as an accompaniment to, say, an Afternoon Tea, which is exactly what I have planned with my lovely mamma (shh, don’t tell her!)

Authentic Rosé Packshot

 Whether you’re holding a leisurely lunch, indulging in afternoon tea like us, or you simply want to give the gift of luxury, add some sparkle to mum’s special day with these two suggestions from Champagne Canard-Duchêne.

 

Crisp, refreshing and light, the champagne is perfect to add a bit of colour to the table and as a fun alternative to the usual brands.

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And as delicate fruity notes such as raspberry and strawberry are quite evident in the glass, it’s perfect to accompany a cream tea scone, mmmm.

 

And, why not finish the day with bubbles too

 

 

 

LUSH (I know I go on about them but I’m obsessed!) have some great bubble bars, soaps and amazing bubble bars, specially for mum. I’m a big fan of the tulip bubble wands, this time with added wildflower seeds embedded in the label (I’m still waiting for mine to grow!)

 

Tulip bubble bar

Tulip bubble bar

I also discovered the inhale/exhale bath bomb which, looks a little different from the glitter-packed bombs I’m used to but is a bit more fun as each side fizzles away at a different speed to the other.

AND it has a lovely surprise, a sweet little message floating around the bath before mum steps in. So cute.

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Happy Mother’s Day x

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REVIEW: Lush Spa, Hard Day’s Night Treatment

Once in a while an experience – because that’s what the Hard Day’s Night treatment is, an experience – comes along that stops you in your tracks, knocks you down, and throws everything you every thought you knew about spa treatments out the window.

I was lucky enough to be invited to Liverpool’s Lush Spa to try their Hard Day’s Night treatment in the city where it was launched last year. Inspired by the music of The Beatles, the treatment is designed to relax your mind and body through a combination of firm massage and gentle passive stretches and, from what I had read, I was in for a treat.

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The lovely Lush store, Liverpool

On my arrival at the store and after a quick shufty around a few of my fave Lush products I was met by my therapist and taken upstairs through a secret door to the spa which was unlike any other spa I had visited before. Instead of all clean lines, uplighting and minimalist decoration, I found myself in a country cottage kitchen area complete with solid wood workbench/table and comfy seats.

After a short consultation and a walk through about what was in store for me in the next 75 minutes  I was taken through to the treatment room where I was given my very own set of PJs.

Pyjamas

PJ Time!

That’s right – pyjamas! No nudity here thank you very much, this was all about getting cosy, comfy and content and the lovely striped slumber wear had also been wrapped around a hot water bottle to make them all toasty – bonus!  PJs on, I snuggled down underneath the covers on the heated bed and rang my little bell so the therapist knew we were good to go. Loved this touch as too often when I’ve been to a spa I’ve been left lying there for a touch longer than I would have preferred.

During the sensory journey of music and stress-releasing massage, designed to leave you feeling relaxed, uplifted and ready for a new day, a series of passive stretches are performed to work out any knots and niggles. During the dry massage your limbs are gently stretched, bounced and manipulated in time to a dreamy soundtrack of cleverly reworked Beatles songs. Whatever worries you walked in with, this treatment will help you find your inner peace and just… let it be. (Badumtish!)

It was the little touches that really made this treatment for me. From the start when the music takes you to the docks, listening to the gentle swish of the sea and the seagulls overhead, to the hand massage as ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’ (what else) began.

Another alternative moment that I had never experience in the past, was the use of ribbons tied to your ankles to make you feel like you were floating through weightlessness – a section inspired by the Cirque du Soleil ‘Love’ show which also uses Beatles music.

After the treatment I was left alone in the room for a short time to meditate and reflect on the experience. As the sound of a gently ticking clock played, you knew it was time to wake up refreshed at the sound of an alarm clock. No one likes that sound usually but I was more than happy to yawn, stretch and get out of ‘bed’ feeling more refreshed than I do when I have to get up to go to work!

Back in my normal attire I made my way back through to the kitchen where tea and Jammy Dodger biscuits sat waiting for me.

Tea and Biscuits

More tea vicar?

There are many other surprises throughout the treatment but I didn’t want to give you a step by step, paint by numbers because each individual will take certain aspects away with them for different reasons.

Given the Hard Day’s Night Treatment is priced at £85 it is a little pricier than usual treatments but that’s the thing, this treatment isn’t ‘usual’ – it is anything but, so the price tag is certainly worth it for a special treat.

And for everyone who has the treatment  is  a Golden Slumbers bath bomb to keep the feelings of peace, calm and relaxation lasting even longer.

I’m just planning when I can try something else because if that is just one of the treatments I can’t wait to experience the rest!

To find out more, or to book an appointment, telephone Lush Spa Liverpool on 0151 236 6952 or visit the Lush website here to book and to see a video on how the treatment was designed.  You can also purchase or take a listen to the music used in the treatment here

National Vegetarian Weeks: Days Six and Seven

And on the sixth day…………….I caved *sad face*

But all was not lost.

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Though I had failed spectacularly on Saturday night – M&S’ Two Dine for £10 deal was on and there was no way Mr Mc was going to EVER go for the veggie option – I was still waving my veggie flag high and wondered if there was a loophole I could get through meaning I could still get away with having vegetarian influences in my life.

So, I thought I’d try an alternative way to be veggie. 
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Enter, my Green Good Fairy, Lush.

Their cosmetics are full of fresh fruit and veg and made with organic ingredients where possible so all was not lost.

AND our furry little friends are safe, because, as many of you know, the cosmetics are not tested on animals *hurrah*

So, they are 100% suitable for vegetarian155-Flying-Fox-resized 29-Angels-on-Bare-Skin-resizeds and a whopping 80% are approved by the Vegan Society.

I was sent a lovely little package consisting of the Flying Fox shower gel, Angels on Bare Skin facial cleanser and the Vanishing Cream moisturiser.

Happily for me I was also sent the Ocean Salt face and body scrub that I had recently run out of so *bonus*.

As of yet I haven’t tried out the latter three but the Flying Fox shower gel is an absolute joy. The smell is quite unusual but it certainly wakes you up in the morning because the honey that is used in the gel gives it a glorious scent. Mr Mc asked me what the smell was after I’d used it and now I can’t stop him from nabbing it. Plus you can smell the scent on your skin for most of the day.

Also, it’s especially good at The Time of the Month, because Lush have added the top essential oils for calming PMT AND it doubles as a shampoo (not tried this yet) – win

Will have to let you know when I use the rest so I can give you an update 🙂

Overall, the experience of spending a week as a veggie wasn’t as hard as I had originally thought, all it takes is a little planning and imagination. I’d recommend  it if you fancy challenging yourself.

REVIEW: In love with Lush

There are some days when my job doesn’t feel like a job at all.

Monday was one of those days 🙂

On day 8 of 9 and a half I was feeling somewhat fazed, sleepy and positively grumpy but I had a ‘job’ (in the loosest sense of the word) to go on so off I trotted to the Lush store at Preston’s Fishergate Centre.

I arrived just in time for an evacuation – the centre’s entire population gathering on a nearby car park during a delightful ‘Spring’ freeze was just what the doctor ordered(!) – but the lovely Lush ladies were not to be thwarted in their quest to bring me a little bit of sunshine.

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Back in the warmth of the store I was met my Heather, Danielle (who incidently has a rather fabulous blog here), Millie, Charlotte and Tracey. As I arrived I was the first person back inside after the near-dramatic fire drill but the area quickly filled up with customers including one group of schoolgirls from a local primary school who, like me, were there to be shown the inner workings of the Lush machine

Though the current weather conditions may be eager to keep us in an icy grip, we ladies are ready to Spring forward and banish the Winter woolies to the back of the wardrobe for another year

But before we get ahead of ourselves, our skin needs to be warm-weather ready.

The Lush company makes their products by hand every week and at the Preston store, I was given the opportunity to get my hands dirty.

Under the instruction of Heather Smith, who works at the store, I was provided with the ingredients to create one of Lush’s face masks; ‘Catastrophe Cosmetic’ (a review will be on it’s way!)
Combining blueberries, almond oil and essential oils, the mask really is food for your face.

Heather says, “The natural products really help in getting the best out of your skin.
“And as blueberries are a natural antioxidant, this particular mask is brilliant in times of emergencies when your skin breaks out.”
As I gazed at the array of pots on display, highlighted

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with asparagus, lemons, garlic and even chocolate drops, it was difficult to refrain from eating the stuff – something I must remember as all of the masks need to be stored in the fridge as they’re so fresh.

Stacey Smith, showed me around the shop’s facial scrub collection, and added Spring is the perfect time to shed dull complexions.
She says, “Most of the scrubs we have in store are fine to use every day and, again, they all use natural ingredients rather than harsh chemicals so are lovely on the skin and help us to get rid of the dull layers of skin and toxins that build up in the skin.”

Another top tip to banish Winter skin blues it to feed dry skin that has been battered by harsh winds and overactive central heating with attentive moisturisers.
Though there are plenty on offer, the aptly named ‘Gorgeous’ is a Lush best seller.
Stacey continues, “The formula was favoured by Princess Diana and is one of our customer’s favourites.
“Though a little more expensive than the other moisturisers we stock, this one is made using the most effective ingredients.”
If it’s good enough for royalty, it’s good enough for me!
*The ladies at Lush, Preston, are on hand to provide consultations seven days a week. For further information contact 01772 555 776.