The Perfect Nude Lip With Lord & Berry (*)

I was previously introduced to Lord & Berry makeup products a while back after receiving a lip crayon in my monthly Birch Box (which I sadly miss and need to sign back up to again!). I was completely obsessed with it, wore it all the time, lost it and as always totally forgot about it… typical.

So when I received a little email from a PR company asking if I’d like to collaborate I was more than happy to say yes (as I lusted over my long, lost lip crayon).

Nude lip shades have always been a pain in the arse too find. Am I right ladies? They’re either too brown, too pink or not nude enough, so when these little babies were posted through the door I was dubious. However as soon as I popped on the Lord & Berry Lip Crayon in shade Intimacy, I did a little happy dance. I’d finally found the perfect nude lip that goes with my new (ish) ash blonde hair and light-medium toned skin (that’s obviously not ‘new’).

The perfect semi matte nude lip

To create this I used the lip liner pencil in shade ‘Bare’ to outline my lips and prime the base. I probably could have left it at that as the liner is highly pigmented, has a creamy texture and nicely sets on the lips without being too comfortable. But I didn’t want that full matte look so I popped on the nude lip crayon in shade ‘Intimacy’. This has an incredible creamy texture which when first applied appears ‘wet’ but soon settles nicely on the lips (without sitting in the creases) creating a more plump, semi matte finish.

What I love most about this lip crayon is not only the fact it’s easy to use in a rush or if you just want to quickly top up without the use of a mirror but the longevity is pretty impressive for a crayon. After eating or drinking it does begin to fade but does so evenly without leaving that awkward patchy look.

The glossy nude lip

Again with this one I used the same nude liner to line and prime my lips. I then swiped on the highly pigmented gloss in shade ‘Tan Nude’. The gloss itself has a creamy, non-sticky texture that again lasts quite a while even for a gloss. After eating/ drinking it does begin to fade but with a quick ‘lip smack’ it becomes evenly applied just a little lighter.

I’d describe these shades as a nude base with mainly brown undertones with a hint of rose pink. Even though the shades are named differently they appear (when swatched) to be the same shade just in different forms.

I think it's safe to say that I'll now be starting my collection of Lord & Berry lip products!

Beki Xo

(*) Disclaimer: I was sent the Lord & Berry lip products in exchange for a review however all opinions are my own

Bag - Marc B (*) , Dress - Newlook, T-shirt - H&M, Shoes - Topshop, Watch, Newlook, Hat - Dorothy Perkins, Necklace - Primark OOTD ft MarcB Bags + Life Update

The Button Down Dress ft Marc B + Life Update 

So, this month has been a little crazy. I’ve been moving into my new house and so blogging took a bit back seat whilst I ticked off house work, recharged my batteries and waiting for the Wi-Fi to be installed. To be honest, although having no Wi-Fi was a little inconvenient (especially as we have no TV) it was nice to have limited access to a world I get sucked into on a daily basis.

I managed to take a good week or so off, although after then I was itching to get back into my blogging routine. So I wrote down my ideas, took some photos and started planning a handful of up and coming posts. On one occasion (throughout these past few weeks) = I did manage to upload a blog post as I took full advantage of free Wi-Fi in the infamous Yard & Coop restaurant in Manchester. Even though I did feel a bit of a d**k whipping out my laptop straight after a lady recognised me from my blog…

But now I’m settled into my home and I have a connection to the internet, I’m feeling incredible inspired to change my style of writing on the blog. I want to make it more ‘me’ and stop overthinking my punctuation and grammar because I’m a blogger not a writer and I prefer to read things in the style of how a person speaks, so why am I not doing that?

On a side note of buying my first home, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying scrolling to death through Pinterest, buying all the home furnishings and generally creating the home I’ve always wanted. We’ve also been spending more time exploring, going on spontaneous walks and finally managing to grab an opportunity for an outfit post!

I’ve been wearing this button down maxi dress to death. It’s so damn comfortable and paired with a t-shirt looks effortless as I throw on boots, sandals or flats (although I’ve begun to realise that flat shoes aren’t the most comfortable for my arched feet).

We were popping into town and as the weather couldn’t make its mind up what it was doing, so I needed a bag that I could throw everything into. I remembered I had the Marc B Angel Pebble Grey shopper bag which I was kindly gifted by Marc B and thought that it was the perfect opportunity to for its first outing.

The bag itself is incredible spacious as I filled it with my regular items plus sunglasses, a light jacket, an umbrella and a parcel I needed to pop to the post office for! But the size isn’t too bulky and structured enough to keep its shape. Just like every Marc B bag the inside is lined with the infamous leopard print material, 1 zip pocket, 2 slip pockets for your mobile phone and an additional outer zip pocket. My favourite feature about this bad is the length of the straps, they're not that awkwardly short length that means passers by become victim to your elbow as it protrudes outwards.They sit comfortable half way down the ribs to give you enough space to swing your arm in and the strap over your shoulder with out a struggle. The outside of the bag itself has a washed out pebble grey appearance which I first fell in love with. I’ve never owned a grey bag as I typically opt for black or brown with the odd autumnal colour in between so I’m pretty excited I now have this in my collection!

Beki Xo

(*) Disclaimer: I was kindly gifted a bag by Marc B to review however all opinions are my own. 
Sukin: Super Greens For Your Skin (*)

We’re constantly been told that super greens are incredibly nutritional for our body and the higher the intake the more benefits we will gain. But as well as consuming those small group of greens from the algae and cereal grass family, what about applying it?

Sukin Skincare has been my favourite natural, cruelty free, carbon neutral, chemical free, vegan skincare brand *intake of breath* ever since I discovered their natural range over a year ago. Their products have always agreed with my skin, helping to clear and alkaline the surface. So when the Sukin team told me they have a new range, I jumped at the chance to get my hands on it!

Their super green skincare range contains natural ingredients such as acai, goji berry, liquorice extract and baobab. The nutrient dense product aids the promotion of healthy skin by helping to brighten and plump the skins surface as well as leave it feeling fresh with a hint of cranberry. 

Detoxifying Facial Scrub
The scrub contains natural micro jojoba beads and ground bamboo to offer skin a gentle but deep polish to remove dirt and impurities. It isn’t too harsh on the skin but still offers a penetrative scrub that removes dead skin and helps to smooth the surface. The product contains a blend of kale, spirulina, chlorella and parsley to detox whilst pineapple, licorice and lime help promote a clear complexion. Although the scrub contains a rainbow of vitamins and minerals the burst of cranberry provides a more refreshing scent. I’ve been using the scrub on a daily basis and it’s perfect to give your skin a burst of energy in the morning, leaving it feeling detoxed and smooth.

Nutrient Rich Facial Moisturiser
Similar to the whole range, this product has a refreshing cranberry scent but offers a more nourishing set of antioxidants to moisturise the skin. With added ingredients such as goji berries, rosehip and avocado the facial moisturiser helps to promote a brighter, healthy looking complexion. My favourite benefit about this moisturiser is that it is crammed full of raw nutrients that my skin instantly drinks up upon application. It also leaves the surface of my skin incredibly smooth and fresh without any extra oils or grease, so it’s perfect for priming my skin before makeup.

Detoxifying Clay Masque

The product itself contains kale, spirulina, parsley and chlorella to offer a super green blend of ingredients that help to detox the skin and provide a healthy glow whilst avocado, baobab and goji berry aid in penetrating deep into the skin to nourish and hydrate. The clay has a thick texture that upon application spreads out evenly and comfortably sits on top of the skin. What I love most about this product is not only does it leave my skin feeling more plump but it’s also non-drying to it’s not only great for sensitive skin but it’s super (green) easy to remove!

Nourishing Chia Seed Oil
We’ve all heard the great benefits of popping a sprinkling of chia seeds in a smoothie, on some yoghurt or over your salad but this little bottle of oil reaps all the benefits for your skin. Containing a natural source of omega 3 and 6, antioxidants, phytonutrients (plant chemicals that benefit human health) and amino acids, chia seed oil is the richest botanical source of natural fatty acids. Providing a punch of energy boosting power, chia seed oil helps to prevent premature skin aging by speeding up the skin’s natural repair system. You can use the oil twice a day and it doesn’t leave a greasy feel however I prefer to use it as overnight face oil, simply because it can get to work on my skin overnight and I’m left with baby soft skin in the morning. It also comes with a pipette applicator so there's no product waste or messy skincare use!

Beki Xo

My Top 5 'New In' Skincare Products

Anyone else go through those phases of buying certain types of products each month? One month it’s clothes, the next it’s shoes, the next it’s makeup? Well this month I feel like I’ve been a little less interested in clothes and a little more interested in beauty/skincare. I’ve peeled myself away from buying my usual ‘safe’ skincare products and dipped my freshly moisturised hands into some newbies. Newbies of which I’ve completely fallen for and need to shout about!

Pixi Glow Tonic
This product had been on my ‘wish list’ for a number of months but I couldn’t bring myself to spending £18 on something that I wasn’t sure would be ‘right’ for me. However after venturing into M&S beauty section and finding a smaller 100ml bottle for around half the price, I figured it’d be worth a try and I wasn’t disappointed! The tonic itself is an alcohol free, oil free exfoliating facial tonic that gently removed dead skills cells to reveal healthier, more toned skin. I use this product on a daily basis and it is incredibly gentle on my skin, helping to remove any dry matches around my t-zone and aid in keeping blemishes at bay. Since I started using this product my skin has felt incredibly soft, I’ve had very little breakouts (except when I stopped using it!) and my skin has more of a glow.

Transformulas Lip Volume
There are so many products on the market that contain spices and chemicals that basically irritate the lips into swelling, causing that semi-permanent increase in lip size and giving them the ‘lip plumping’ name. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not one to get ‘spendy’ on lip plumper’s as I believe only surgery can give you a permanent plumped pout. However this product is a little more than just your average lip plumper. The product itself has a peppermint scent that leaves a cooling sensation on the lips. It doesn’t burn nor sting, in fact it barely even tingles; instead it leaves my lips feeling incredibly moisturised and hydrated whilst smoothing over any visible lines which all in all lead to a more plump, softer appearance. Since using the product for just over a week now I have noticed that my lips are more smooth and fuller without increasing in size. If anything I simply buy this product as a hydrating lip treatment as it’s incredible but it won’t give you anything that surgery could.

Huygens Face Scrub
I discovered this product when it landed in my Birch Box and it’s been a great edition to my skincare regime. The scrub itself has a thick paste like consistency that contains rice powder particles which provide an intense yet gentle exfoliation. The product also contains the added ingredients of sesame oil and green tea which help to hydrate and moisturise the skin as it removes dead skin cells. The scent reminds me a little of toothpaste and to be honest the texture is pretty similar except it isn’t sticky. I like to use this product 2 or 3 times a week to deeply exfoliate my skin and I’m pretty impressed how a small 5p sized amount goes a long, long way.

Ren Rosa Centifolia Cleansing Gel
Ren has always been a favourite skincare brand of mine except I very rarely purchase their products as the price tag is a little too high for something you literally wash down the sink. However at the same time that I was browsing through the M&S beauty section I also found this Ren 100ml mini which for £6 I couldn’t quibble. The scent reminds me of Turkish delight (which will be the rose) so it was an instant hit! The texture is a strange gloopy, medium consistency which once applied to dry skin spreads evenly across, providing a light foam which increases once water is added. I love how quick and easy this product is and it makes a great morning ‘wake me up’ cleanser.

Transformulas Hydration Gold Hydration Cream
I was pretty intrigued when this product first landed in my PO Box. First of all it contains 23 carat gold powder and hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid) so I was instantly sold on trying it out. I was also incredibly surprised as to how versatile this small little bottle of ‘gold’ was. The product itself has a (pretty obvious) gold radiance which when applied to this skin creates a natural, holiday like glow. It doesn’t feel too hydrating but it does soften the skin and also creates a flawless makeup free healthy appearance. But as well as an anti-aging moisturiser that claims to tone, firm, and nourish it also works incredibly well as a base to your foundation if you’re after a more natural glow. You can either add it into your foundation or apply it as a primer base. As well as an addition to your foundation this little pot of gold also works incredibly well (if you haven’t already guessed) as a highlighter! I’ve used it a number of times to highlight my cheek bones and cupids bow which has led to a number of strangers asking what highlighter I’ve used!
Beki Xo

(*) As part of this blog post I was gifted the Transformulas products in exchange for a review however all opinions are my own and it was my personal preference to feature them in this blog post.

My Top 3 Avocado Brunch Spots In Manchester 

Anyone that knows me will know how obsessed I am with an avocado and poached egg brunch. It’s just one of those breakfast dishes that I crave and will consume at any time of the day and luckily for me, more and more places in Manchester are doing breakfast all day!

To be completely honest there's pretty much a new breakfast place open every few months, it’s actually getting hard to catch up but for those many that I have tried (and there's plenty more that I’ve got to tick off my list) here are my 3 favourites that I go back to time and time again...

A photo posted by Beki (@smocktofrock) on

Ezra & Gil
*Makes Mmm noise*
Ezra & Gil has a Scandinavian industrial interior with rustic vibes and an open kitchen. It has to be one of my favourite places for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The ‘Smashed Avocado with Feta and Red Chillis’ is just incredible. It comes with 2 chunky pieces of sourdough bread with a mountain of avocado, a runny poached egg, fresh red chillies and chunky sprinkles of feta. The portion you get is pretty generous compared to most of places which of course instantly puts Ezra & Gil on the top of my list! The only struggle about Ezra & Gil is the seating as there are few smaller tables so the larger tables quickly become filled with individuals leaving that awkward 1 empty seat rule however if there aren’t a lot of you or you get there are just the right time, it’s totally worth it!

A photo posted by Beki (@smocktofrock) on

Pen and Pencil
Pen and Pencil has a more of a Mad Men style New York feel with a bar/ lunch area and restaurant around the back. There are also two smashed avocado options on the brunch menu (which again is served all day). There’s the ‘Avocado and Feta’ which to be honest tastes pretty identical to Ezra & Gil (which is pretty impressive) except for few small changes in the ingredients and 2 poached eggs instead of 2 pieces of bread however I’m not complaining as that mountain of avocado is what it’s all about and if you really wanted two pieces you could order extra. Then there’s the ‘Guilt Free Breakfast’ which is a lighter option of two small pieces of rye, smashed avocado and a couple slices of pancetta. I have to say I’m always torn between which I prefer so I tend to rotate them each time I go!

A photo posted by Beki (@smocktofrock) on

Evelyn’s Café Bar
Evelyn's has such a relaxed vibe with an industrial roof garden feel. The breakfast menu has ‘me’ written all over it (as my boyfriend would say). It’s always a struggle to come to a decision on what I want as clearly asking for all of it isn’t a sensible option. But one of my favourite options is the ‘Avocado, Poached Egg Sour Dough’, except I usually swap out the sour dough for potato hash and it is so bloody tasty! My only qualm would be that the portions aren’t that large and I could easily chow down on another plate full but the quality is impressive and it's a great place for vegetarians.

A list of places in Manchester on my 'need to visit for avocado brunches'...
Federal Cafe Bar
Home Sweet Home NQ

Beki Xo
 My Ash Blonde Hair Care Routine
It’s funny; when my hair was dark brown I wasn’t too bothered about a ‘hair care routine’. Maybe because darker hair was easier to maintain, maybe because split ends and colour fade where less visible or maybe because I simply just wasn’t that bothered. 

But since going blonde I’ve taken more interest in the products I put in my hair to keep it toned, nourished and looking as healthy as possible. It’s taking me a few months to go from dark cherry brown to ash blonde and I believe the products I’ve been using have benefitted towards keeping my hair healthy and bright. 

So here’s 'My Ash Blonde Hair Care Routine'...

Step 1: I like to make sure my hair is tangle free before I head into the shower and apply products, so with this I use the infamous Tangle Teezer to quickly removed any knots and tangles.

Step 2: Before I use the violet shampoo I prefer to cleanse my hair of any product. Usually I opt for a ‘cleansing shampoo’ however I’ve found that the Aussie Colour Mate Shampoo works just as well. It not only cleanses the build-up of product out of my hair it also helps to keep the colour from fading.  

Step 3: I cannot rave enough about this product; even my hairdresser was impressed at the lift of colour I was able to gain through my brown to blonde stages. This 
Fudge Clean Blonde Violet shampoo helps to tone my hair and keep it a cool ash blonde shade. It’s advised to leave it on for no more than 10 minutes as the violet tone is highly pigmented and can leave a purple tint to your hair however I actually like this look so I leave it in for approx. 20 minutes before rinsing thoroughly. 

Step 4: On a ‘normal hair wash day’ I use the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner which I’ve used for years as it smells incredible and leaves my hair feeling super soft.  However once a week (or whenever my hair needs some serious attention) I opt for the Toni & Guy Nourish Reconstruction Hair Mask and leave this on for approx. 5-10 minutes, to give the formula enough time to penetrate deep into the hair follicles. 

Step 5: After washing out the hair mask thoroughly, I wring my hair through to rid any excess moisture and wrap it in a towel whilst I potter around for 5-10 minutes. I try not to keep my wrapped in a towel for too long as this can dry the hair out as the towel soaks up moisture from the open follicles. When removing the towel, if my hair is still too damp I wrap it back up and squeeze the towel around the hair. Never rub your hair dry as this creates split ends and damages the hair which is delicate when damp.  

Step 6: Before I brush my hair I apply the Fudge Urban Miracle Ends which helps to seal split ends and de-frizz dry hair (this product smells incredible and reminds me of nostalgic holidays). I then brush my hair using the tangle teaser to ensure the product is coated evenly throughout the hair.  

Step 7: To protect my hair from any heat damage I use the 
Nicky Clarke 220 Degree Heat Barrier Spray, taking time to make sure all my hair is protected. I then part dry my hair and leave the other half to 'air try'. This is so it isn’t too damp when I'm whilst I continue to get ready and to make sure I’m not using heat on my hair for too long as this can be incredibly damaging. Of course If I’m in a rush I’ll need to dry my hair fully but whenever I can I always try to part air dry. 

Step 8: My hair is very thick so I prefer to straighten the ends with my trust GHD’s (which I’ve had since I was 15 and they’re still going strong) to flatten the hair follicles, leaving the root which helps to create volume and running John Frieda Polishing Serum through the ends to banish any pesky flyaways and leave my hair looking healthy and shiny. 

I've been using this hair care routine for a good few months now and although my cleansing shampoo changes from time to time, I believe the best products that have been made the biggest impact are; the Fudge Violet Shampoo for toning my hair, the Toni & Guy Hair Mask for keeping it strong (especially the ends), the Fudge Miracle Ends for keeping those pesky split ends sealed and hydrated and the Nicky Clarke Barrier Spray for preventing heat damage!

Products I used in this post:

Aussie Colour Mate Shampoo 
Fudge Clean Blonde Violet Shampoo 
Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner
Toni & Guy Nourish Reconstruction Hair Mask 
Tangle Teaser
Fudge Urban Iced Tropical Cocktail Miracle Ends 
Nicky Clarke 220 Degree Heat Barrier Spray 
John Frieda Frizz Ease Polishing Serum 
GHD Styler

Beki Xo

(*) This post was not sponsored and no products were gifted.
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