W7 Advent Calendar

Now onto one of my favourite new Christmas traditions – Beauty Advent Calendars. They seem to be everywhere at the moment, and I have also seen Yankee Candle editions, jewellery versions and many many more. I do love a chocolate advent calendar, but a beauty one is a lot less fattening and to be honest a lot more fun! I have chosen three this year, the Selfridges edition, the Benefit calendar and the W7 Cosmetics Beauty Advent Calendar.

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W7 produce really amazing quality, fun and reasonable priced make-up items and I have done a few blog reviews on their products before and therefore I was SUPER DUPER excited to be able to show you my W7 Beauty Advent Calendar.

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It opens up like a book would, and is a gorgeous metallic red colour, and so nice and festive! Inside are 24 doors with beauty products behind each one, including nail polishes, lipsticks, lipglosses, eyeshadows and a full-size mascara. I think the Beauty Advent Calendars are such good ideas for being able to try different colours and products without forking out for the full size. Also, if you aren’t fond of a particular colour, it would be a cute idea to give it to a friend – it is the season of goodwill after all!

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At just £19 from TK Maxx they are a lot cheaper than the majority of the beauty advent calendars out there, but definitely no less fun!

Have you bought any of the alternative advent calendars this year? Would anyone be interested in seeing the contents of my Selfridges and Benefit calendar too?

Love,

Kathryn xx

Crabtree & Evelyn Caribbean Island Wild Flowers Ultra-Moisturising Hand Therapy

I have not tried the Crabtree & Evelyn hand creams before but I couldn’t wait to give this one a whirl, I love Caribbean and floral scents and so this one sounds perfect.

Rich in antioxidants this intensive conditioning hand cream is formulated with conditioning shea butter and macadamia nut oil to moisturise and soften the hands. Delicate spider lily (had to Google what this is, it is the common name for a number of different plant species within the family Amaryllidaceae) is blended with notes of wild flowers, tropical citrus fruits and a marine accord, conjuring the feeling of relaxing on a tranquil Caribbean island.

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I once went to the Caribbean and stayed at the Atlantis Hotel on Paradise Island, Nassau. It was out of this world and by far the most amazing place I have ever visited. The flowers and wildlife out there are gorgeous and the beautiful scents really linger in the air.

The Crabtree & Evelyn Caribbean Island Wild Flowers Ultra-Moisturising Hand Therapy also includes extracts of myrrh to help condition the cuticles and nails, and is formulated without parabens, lauryl sulfates, mineral oil and propylene glycol, and so it really is an all-in-one hand and nail product.

I loved using this hand therapy as it managed and moisturised my hands, nails and cuticles and within days I saw results and the fragrance is just to die for!

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The Crabtree and Evelyn Hand Therapies start at just £5 and you can see the full fragrance range at www.crabtree-evelyn.co.uk

Love,

Kathryn xx

Anatomicals Aloe Handy Hand & Lip Balm Tube

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Another of The Kats Paws’ fave brands is Anatomicals and I recently tried out the Aloe Handy Hand & Lip Balm Tube… I love Anatomicals descriptions of their products and here is their description of this one….

“Handier than sitting next to someone who can fly a plane when the pilot has just died. Handier than a tranquilizer gun when being chased by a rhino. Yes, even handier than a swimming pool down below when you’ve slept-walked off an 18th floor hotel balcony. This combination product averts 2 beauty disasters (dry hands and dry lips) in a single tube. You’ll be glad of it one day. Maybe not when you’re in a plummeting elevator, but definitely one day.”

Now this weather is kinda crazy at the moment, you get a day that’s miserable, rainy and cold and then the next you’re donning your shorts again! Global warming has a lot to answer for…. Our skin doesn’t know whether it is coming or going and so to prevent cracked fingertips and sandpaper skin, Anatomicals have brought out a hand cream and a lip balm in one for on-the-go ease.

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To use this wonder-product, you open the transparent cap, apply the solid lip balm, screw open the lip balm cap and then press the tube and squeeze the cream into your hands. Easyyyyyy!

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The lip balm is unscented, unflavoured and healing and the hand cream is thick, aloe-scented, healing and quickly absorbs into the skin. I love that this is two products in one and is such an essential for this time of year, you NEED to get your mitts on one!

Anatomicals is available at www.ASOS.com Have you tried any of the range before?

Love,

Kathryn xx

Nail HQ Protect & Repair

Yet another Kats Paws favourite, Nail HQ have a great product called Protect & Repair. Sticking with the winter care theme, this is a perfect product to keep your nails in tip top condition.

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This clear coat is formulated for weak and soft nails, and with the colder weather causing damage to our pretty talons, this keeps them strengthened. The formula includes root ginger, rice protein, soy protein and hydrolysed collagen as well as water which helps to hydrate, moisturize and condition the nails, to help maintain nail flexibility.

For initial treatment, you simply apply one coat without colour but afterwards you can reapply daily over the existing coats until your nails show signs of improvement. My nails looked and felt healthier after just four days, and Nail HQ recommend removing the coats of the formula after five days, and re-starting the process.

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As my nails are fairly healthy at the moment, I have found that I didn’t need to re-start the process of application, but once the weather gets harsher I shall apply again to keep my nails in great condition.

The Nail HQ range is available at Tesco, Amazon and Superdrug and you can find out more at www.nailhq.co.uk

What are your top nail tips? Let me know in the comments below.

Love,

Kathryn xx

Bio-Oil

Scars. We all have them, I have scars from falling over when I was younger, operations, and gaining/losing weight. Some can be pretty unsightly but Bio-Oil is one of those hero products that has been around for years and is used by many celeb beauties, designed to help reduce the appearance of your scars.

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As you know, I love multi-use products and Bio-Oil helps with a wide range of skin complaints and problems, including;

·         Dehydrated Skin – Helps to replenish the skin’s natural oils, which are often stripped away by extreme weather and central heating

·         Weight Related Stretch Marks – Helps prevent the formation of stretch marks during periods of rapid weight gain or loss

·         Uneven Skin Tone – Helps improve the appearance of uneven skin tone which can be caused by hormonal fluctuations or excessive skin exposure

·         Ageing Skin – Helps smooth and tone ageing, sagging and wrinkled skin on both the face and body

·         Daily Moisturiser – Helps moisturise the skin and can be built into a daily skin routine, all over the body and/or face, either on its own or underneath your regular moisturiser

·         Scars – Improves the appearance of new and old scars, from surgery, accidents, burns, insect bites, scratches and chickenpox

Most of you will have seen Bio-Oil in your local shops and supermarkets, but I think it is one of those products that you see so much that sometimes you forget about how amazing it is for you. Bio-Oil’s unique formulation combines skincare ingredients such as Vitamin A and E, Calendula, Lavender, Rosemary and Chamomile, plus a unique ingredient called PurCellin Oil, which is unique to Bio-Oil. PurCellin Oil ensures that the ingredients are easily absorbed deep into the second layer of the skin where they can provide targeted treatment.

The oil itself is more of a dry oil than a greasy, sticky oil and so is perfect for use all over the body, as well as being suitable for all skin types. The lavender and chamomile extracts are fabulous for soothing and calming skin, which I found great for me personally as I tend to suffer from reddening and sensitivity, especially on my cheeks.

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Have you used Bio-Oil before? It costs £8.95 for 60ml, £14.95 for 125ml and £19.95 for 200ml and is available from stores including Boots, Superdrug, Tesco, Waitrose and many more. You can find out more about the brand at http://www.facebook.com/biooiluk

Love,

Kathryn xx

Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Nail Enamel Collection

Revlon’s most recent Nail Enamel Collection is a gorgeous range of gel polishes, all with the fabulous theme of Las Vegas – well with regards to the shade names. This pioneering nail collection provides brilliant colour, gel-shine and long lasting wear.

Each polish pairs base coat and colour in one combined formula for convenient, time-saving application, which if you read The Kats Paws regularly, you know will be a massive bonus for me as I hate waiting for each individual step of the nail polishing routine to dry. The formula contains optical brighteners which give the nails superior, vivid colour, which is perfect to brighten up these dull, dreary days.

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There are a whopping 30 stunning shades in the collection and here are five of my favourites;

Checkmate – This is a light beige colour that is fab for everyday wear, regardless of the occasion or the time of year, this polish will take you through the whole year.

Sure Thing – This shade is a bright white, some people may shy away from white nail polish, but I have seen a lot of it around lately and I definitely want to give this look a whirl. It is also perfect for American-French polish looks on your fingers or toes.

Long Shot – This is definitely my current favourite Autumn/Winter shade this year – a gorgeous rusty orange colour. It reminds me of New England maple leaves and Halloween colours. Gorgeous!

Dealer’s Choice – Teal in colour, this is a darker shade of the popular minty/teal greens that we saw in the warmer months. I love the fact that this shade is also perfect for pretty much any time of year.

Hot Hand – I couldn’t do a Top 5 without including a pink shade! This is bright without being summery, which I love and so us girly girls can still be pink whilst keeping in with Autumn/Winter trends.

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The Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Nail Enamels are priced at £6.99 each (much cheaper than a gel polish application in a salon!) and are available from most Boots and Superdrug stores.

What are your favourite nail enamel colours at the moment?

Love,

Kathryn xxx

Birchbox October 2014

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You gals know how much I love a beauty box, and here is Birchbox’s October products and review.

Inside the box was a cute pink make-up bag which contained this month’s products. The theme of this box was in relation to CoppaFeel, whom help promote breast cancer awareness, as October is Breast Cancer Awareness month! Check out CoppaFeel at www.coppafeel.org

On to the products for this month…

KMS California FREE SHAPE Hot Flex Crème (Full price £15.50) – I haven’t tried any of the KMS California range before and so it was great to get something new.

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This particular product helps to smooth curls, waves and frizz and smells sweet as candy! It is a styling cream and is applied to towel-dried hair, which you then comb through and dry.

Shaveworks The Cool Fix (Full price £11) – I tend to suffer from shaving rash and little bumps after shaving and so this cooling gel lotion is perfect for me as it treats ingrown hairs, razor bumps and redness after hair removal.

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It is suitable for use after waxing or shaving and can be used at anytime of the day.

Pixi by Petra Shea Butter Lip Balm (Full price £8) – I have seen the Pixi ranges before and the colours of both the product and packaging are gorgeous!

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Again it is a brand I haven’t used, although have wanted to and I was really pleased to see this in my Birchbox. The colour is pink and leaves a light tint on the lips, along with plenty of moisturisation.

Balance Me Cleanse and Smooth Face Balm (Full price £20) – I have tried some of the Balance Me range before and really enjoy using the products and seeing the results.

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This balm is a natural nourishing cleanser with exfoliating oatmeal powder which is perfect for normal to dry skin, but is also fab at balancing out oily skin too. I love to use this after a warm bath or shower, massaging over my face, and washing off with a warm cotton cloth.

Meaningful Beauty Glowing Serum (Full price £30.95) – Yet another new brand to me – one of the things I love most about beauty boxes!

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Dr Sebagh and supermodel Cindy Crawford thought up this sumptuous radiance-enhancing anti-ageing serum. It is NEVER too early to start wrinkle prevention girls and so use this in the morning before moisturiser or anytime for a quick pick-me-up.

This month’s lifestyle gift was a Lipstick Pen which is super cute to pop in your handbag or on your desk at work. I love stationery, it is one of my shopping highlights!

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You can sign up to Birchbox to receive your very own box at www.birchbox.co.uk

Are you a beauty box fan? Let me know in the comments!

Love,

Kathryn xx