Friday, 5 March 2010

Longer Lashes

I have to do this post because I wanted to talk about this weird eyeliner like 'thing' which helps to grow your lashes incredibly long. I have so far had a look at 3 different types. ( I have also done a little research on each of them).

LATISSE (tried and tested by Brooke Shields)

You might not believe these pictures, but you have a look at other people's blogs and their reports, you will see that these products do work.
Im sure there are other products out there that I haven't heard of, but the 3 above I have had a look at. I have looked at results on the websites, as well as other blogs where girls have tried and tested them. They all look AMAZING. The LiLash one, I have seen more before and after pictures of. You might think that it has been photoshopped, but it's not!! If you have a look at this blog by B U B B L E G A R M, you will see what I mean. I love her blog, and I have taken advice from her before. She is currently trying this product out and posting her views about it. 

This is quite pricey though, but according to what I have read from others, it lasts over 6 months. So really and truly it is worth that money when you think of the results. I know you must be thinking where's the catch right? Well, the catch is that once you stop using these products, the lashes do fall out, not make you go bald, but the lashes will return to original length. 

There are side effects to each and everyone them. The ones that I discovered whilst researching last night, were as follows:
  • itchiness
  • red eyes
  • sore eyes
  • skin pigment discolouration around the area where you apply
  • dark circles around the eye
  • darkening of your eye colour permanently if your eye colour is blue, green, grey or hazel (this was only reported with Revitalash)
  • hair growth in other area of the face
  • lashes breaking off by themselves or when using eyelash curlers
  • Worsening eyesight (reported with Revitalash)
Those are some of the side effects I found out about. LiLash and Revitalash had most of those side effects, whereas Latisse had less serious ones. According to their website:

''LATISSE® (bimatoprost ophthalmic solution) 0.03% is the first and only prescription treatment approved by the FDA for inadequate or not enough eyelashes, growing them longer, fuller and darker.''

Personally if I had the choice to choose which one I would go for, it would have to be LATISSE. Although the other ones work really good, and I have seen a lot of before and after pictures, but the side effects are a little scary. BUT the side effects, according to the information I found, have affected less than 10% of the people who have used them.

I am not a health professional, and all the information I have given above are from research I did using Google search engine. If you are willing to try these products or you are going to buy them, please do your own research too and consult your doctor before you try any of them. 

Coastal Scents 88 Matte Pallette

I love eye-shadows and I love experimenting with new colours. Although not too bold, more subtle ones, nonetheless, I like playing around with them. I used to buy one from here, and there, it came to a point where I had actually bought too many and had no space for them, or I would lose them.

I had heard about Coastal Scents for a while, but if you were to order from them, you would have to order from their website. You can buy their products online from eBay, but I don't actually trust buying brands from eBay. So I decided to order from their website, which is American, meaning you would most likely have to pay a customs fee when it would arrive to the UK. (which I did, £11 for my order)

I ordered a few things from them. I will talk about those later. But for now, I will give you a review on their 88 Matt Palette which I love. 

It's worth every penny. When you first see the palette, you will be surprised at how small it is. You would think it would be a bit bigger since there are so many colours in there. At least that's what I thought when I first saw it. I opened up the palette and had a look at the colours. They are so tiny. 

As you can see they are a little smaller than a penny. BUT they last long. Not to mention, they stay on your eyelids all day long without creasing, or fading, whether you're wearing an eyeshadow primer or not. Usually a couple of coats is more than enough, which is why they last. I have had this palette a while, and I still haven't gone through all the colours, but I will!! My favourite colour is the orange colour below:

As you can see, I have used that one quite a bit compared to the other colours. Although the palette is matt, this orange and a few others have a bit of shimmer in them. Now I haven't taken any pictures of this colour on me, but I will soon and I will put the pictures up here. I think its a really nice colour whether you only wear this one, or whether you mix it with other ones. I will be buying the 88 Shimmer Palette one day soon, because I am more into shimmery colours than matt ones at the moment. 

If any of you have bought Coastal Scents before from a trusted seller in the UK, please let me know so that I don't need to order from the US and pay another customs fee. 

Thursday, 4 March 2010

How I store all my Jewellery (there's a lot of it)

I absolutely love love love earrings, the bigger the better!! I have a ton and I wear every single one (obviously not at the same time) with different outfits. For the time being, living in such a small flat with hardly space for anything, I have had to think of different ways of storing them without damaging them in drawers where they would all be mangled. 

I thought of this method years ago when I was in university and I had a tiny little room and too much jewellery. I wanted to have all my earrings within reach and displayed in a way where I could see them all at the same time. So when I got dressed and I was looking for a particular earring I would see it straight away. 

This is how I store my earrings:

Basically what I did was hammer two large oval nails in each end, and one in the middle. Then I used a thick thread to tie around one end and over to the other end and back again a couple of times to make it secure. That way you just hang up all your earrings on that same line. Easy access and neatly stored (sort of). It might not be everybodies taste, but this is how I like storing my earrings. 

I have done the same with my necklaces too, as you can see below:

My bracelets are below my necklaces in their own jewellery box. I buy my jewellery from almost anywhere and everywhere. Here are some of the places where I have bought from in the past:

The list is quite long, but those are a few places that I buy from. 

Let me know some of your storage solutions that I can maybe use in the future. 

Grilled asparagus and melon salad

It's a beautiful sunny day in London and I am imagining summer. I'm looking forward to summer, and going to the park with my children, and barbecues.... ahhhhh the joys of summer...let's just hope that we will have a warm summer this year. The last warm summer that I can remember was in 2005. It was beautiful. It was hot almost everyday. So I pray that this summer will be the same too.

Here's a recipe which is an excellent side dish to all your barbecue meals...I think it works well with most summery dishes. This recipe is by my all time favourite chef Giada De Laurentiis. This woman's food is amazing. tried and tested by me.

  • 500g fresh green asparagus, stalks trimmed
  • 1/2 melon, any sweet melon, cut into small bite size pieces
  • 1pack mini mozzarella pearls (125g) 
  • 2tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Toasted pine nuts or salted peanuts, chopped (optional, gives the salad a bit of saltiness) 
  • 2tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2tbsp Extra Virgin olive Oil
  • salt and pepper


Toss the asparagus in a bowl with 2tbsp Extra Virgin olive Oil until well coated, season with salt and pepper.

Grill the asparagus until tender, but still crispy 
In a bowl using a fork, whisk the lemon and Extra Virgin olive Oil well together, season with a little bit of salt and pepper. In a large bowl, mix this with the melon and the mozzarella pearls. 

Lay the melon and mozzarella over the asparagus, and pour over the left over lemon and Extra Virgin Olive Oil vinaigrette over the salad. 
You can now garnish the salad with your toasted pine nuts or crushed peanuts and enjoy! 

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Strawberry cheesecake

I put up pictures of my strawberry cheesecake on my Facebook the other day and I had a few comments on how it looked yummy, so I thought would share this recipe with you all. This cheesecake does not need to be baked and it does not contain eggs, its very straightforward and easy to make...and not to mention so yummy, you might want to put a lock on your fridge door to keep your hands off it :-)

I love the three layers of colours, beautiful vibrant red from the strawberries and the jelly, then the white, smooth pureness of the cheese...and then the brown crunchy biscuit...

Enough with the's the recipe:

  • 150g digestive biscuit (you can use chocolate ones if you want, or use Oreo cookies, but put less sugar in the cheese mixture since the Oreo cookies have that sweet creamy middle)
  • 50-60g melted butter
  • 3tbsp brown sugar (don't add this if you use Oreo cookies)

  • 250g Mascarpone cheese
  • 250g Philadelphia cheese
  • 70g Icing sugar (more if you like it sweet, less if you don't)
  • 60ml double cream
  • 1tsp vanilla extract

  • Strawberry jelly mixture, I used this one click here (it sets almost within 10 minutes in room temperature) you can get this in Asda and Tesco (larger stores), make this at the last minute
  • 8-10 pieces of strawberry (I used large ones because I love strawberries) cut into small pieces

Use a small cake tin, such as this one, click here, and line it with cling-film so that the cheese won't stick to the sides. 

In a plastic bag, or a blender, crush the biscuits, and add the brown sugar and the melted butter. Mix well till the biscuit sticks together, or until you see that it will not just crumble off when you slice the cheesecake when its done. If it needs a little more butter, melt a bit more and add it, but make sure you don't make the biscuits greasy, it has to have a bit of crunch to it. Put the biscuit mixture into your cake tin and flatten out all over the bottom of your cake tin. Put this in the fridge to set, roughly 30 minutes.

In a bowl mix the two cheeses together. When it has all been mixed well, add the vanilla extract and mix. Then you add the cream and fold it in slowly so that you do not create any air bubbles. Once it all has been blended well, pour the mixture over the biscuit and smooth it all out. Set it back into the fridge for a minimum of one hour to set. 

When it has set, take it out and put the strawberries all over it. Make your jelly mixture now, let it cool a little bit so that its not hot, and pour as much as you want over the strawberries and set back into the fridge to set. Take out of the fridge, slowly release the spring form, and remove the cling-film. Use a knife slightly warmed up to cut the cheesecake with, this way it will be easier to cut. 

Enjoy :-)

Monday, 1 March 2010

Chicken and Vegetable Lasagne

Lasagne is one of my all time favourite foods. I could have it at least once a week...BUT only if I make it myself. I don't like lasagne that's too dry, or undercooked lasagne sheets....I must admit I have never made the sauce for it myself, I always buy Dolmio Tomato Sauce and Dolmio Creamy Sauce for it. I will make these sauces myself one day and I will post it onto here and let you all know what it tasted like. So stay tuned for future lasagne recipes (all home made). 

For now, this is how I make my special lasagne for my family....

Chicken and Vegetable Lasagne:


  • 750-900g chicken thigh (depending how much chicken you like), no skin, boiled in water for 40 min, then cooled and meat de-boned and shredded
  • 2 tbsp Garlic Italian seasoning  (if you do not have this, or cant find this, just use some finely chopped garlic and some oregano)
  • 1 large jar Dolmio Tomato Sauce (you can use a small one if you like it a bit dryer, personally I like it saucy)
  • Egg Pasta Lasagne sheets
  • 1 large jar Dolmio Creamy Sauce (once again you can use a small one if you like it a bit dryer, personally I like it saucy)
  • 1 jar Roasted red pepper, you can use the whole jar if its less than 500g
  • 1/2 Onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • 2 medium sized courgettes, sliced diagonally,  
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 2 tbsp light soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
  • 3 tbsp full slivered fresh basil 
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Grated cheese, as much as you like

The first thing you need to do is boil the chicken for about 40 min on medium heat, once cooked (dont worry if its still a little pink because you will be cooking it further in the oven once the lasagne is finished), you de-bone the chicken and shred it to medium bite sized portions. 

You then add 3 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil to a cooking pot and once the oil is hot, add the chicken alongside the Garlic Italian seasoning. fry this for about 2 minutes. 

You then go ahead and add the chopped celery, a pinch of salt and pepper, and fry this for another minute or so, and then set aside in a bowl. 

Heat up another 3 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil in that same pan and fry the crushed garlic until a little golden, and then remove it. This is to flavour and fragrance the oil a little bit. Fry the onions for a couple of minutes, and add the chicken and celery back. You also add the Dolmio tomato sauce, soya sauce, Worcestershire sauce and chicken stock cube. Put the lid on and let this simmer on very low heat while you grill the courgettes. 

Grill the courgettes with a little Extra Virgin Olive Oil on a grill pan for roughly 3min each side until you get nice grill lines on them and they start to soften a little bit, not too much because you still want a bit of crunch left in them. 

Once they are done, remove them from the grill and put onto a plate . 

Get your baking dish. The first layer is the white sauce first, and some of the red sauce as I have shown you above. Then one layer of lasagne sheets, half of the courgettes spread all over, and some roasted red pepper and some basil. 

Then you add a layer of the red sauce, and a layer of the white sauce. No need to be perfect, you just do it roughly, it will all blend well once cooked. But you have to make sure that the lasagne sheets have sauce on them so that they can soak it up and get soft.  

You continue this way of layering until you end you with sauce as the last layer.

Put the lasagne in the oven on 225C, Gas mark 6, 425F for about 30 minutes or until the lasagne sheets are cooked. Use a sharp knife and stick the knife in the middle and the edges to check if they are cooked. 

Then take out the baking dish and sprinkle on the grated cheese. 

Put back in the oven for another 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden. 

Serve and enjoy !!!