Finding Fantastic Freebies & Bargains

We all love a good bargain, better yet, who doesn’t love a cheeky goody or freebie. It’s not always easy finding a good deal once the summer offers have ended, and who wants to wait until January for their next sale shopping fix. As for free gifts, they can be even rarer to come across.

I’ve put together what is hopefully a helpful list of websites and places were anyone can find Bargains, samples and free stuff, to keep you going until the next big sale event. What’s not to love? Enjoy! X

All Beauty

All Beauty formally known as Cheap Smells ( I totally get why they renamed it) is one of my favourite online discount beauty retailers. It’s perfect for if your looking to grab a bargain. They pretty much sell any mainstream beauty brand you can think of at a discount price. Not only that, but they’ll do a price match on any product you find cheaper elsewhere and there is a free gifts section of the website too.

Bounty club

One for all my fellow mamma bears out there. Having a baby can be expensive so most of us will take any help we can get in terms of free stuff. If you haven’t already heard of bounty you can register online to receive free bounty packs full off goodies, information and parenting guides.

There’s also an online community, expert advise, competitions and exclusive, personalised offers and savings of up to 70% off. If your expecting, ask your midwife and she might already have a free bounty pack for you without having to sign up. Similar clubs include Emma’s Diary, Boots baby club and Your Baby Club UK.

Everything Five Pound

If you really want to spend as little as possible on your wardrobe then this is the site for you. everythingfivepounds.com has so much to offer and is well worth a browse if your looking for a new cheap and cheerful outfit. There’s items for men, women, kids and the home.

As the name suggests, everything on the site costs five pound, but don’t let that put you off in terms of product quality. I actually bought a lovely grey maxi dress from here and when I received it, it had originally come from boohoo.com a very well known and trusted fashion retailer.

Freebie Websites

There are tons of freebie websites out there but you should always do your research and be careful about what information you are giving out, especially if a website looks suspicious. These websites do tend to generate a lot of spam so I suggest using an old email address or creating a brand new one specifically for using with these sites.

Two freebie sites that are definitely worth looking into are Magic Freebies and Latest Free Stuff. On both these websites you will find freebies, samples, competitions and more, promoting all sorts products and companies.

Beauty Counters

Makeup and beauty counters are another great place to source free samples whilst your out and about shopping. Usually you only receive them once you’ve purchased something from the counter, but if you get chatty with the shop assistant and are generally interested in a product, your sure to get a sample to test before buying.

So hopefully these suggestions will come of use to anyone looking to save money or grab a freebie. Any more advice on finding great deals and free goodies would be greatly appreciated, leave your comments. Happy bargain hunting people!

My Top Ten Lush Favourites

As a lover of all things Lush I could literally write post after post, reviewing all the products I’ve used and loved over the years however to save time, I’ve picked my top ten favourites and wrote a couple of sentences explaining why I like the product. I hope you enjoy reading and learning about some great skincare, hair care and beauty treats!

10. Limelight Toothy Tabs – I’ve actually tried a few of Lush’s tooth care products and I have to say I do really like them. Limelight toothy tabs do make your teeth and whole mouth feel really clean however they have quite a strong taste. I like to use them in the morning as they help freshen my breath. I prefer to mix them with a regular fluoride toothpaste for safe measure but they can be used on their own.

9. All Things Good Solid Perfume – All things good perfume is really nice if your looking for something a little bit different and unusual compared to regular perfumes. I wasn’t so keen on the smell to begin with but over time it really started to grow on me, lots of people seem to notice and compliment the scent too. It’s smells sort of like smokey candy floss which sounds a bit bazaar but it really is a lovely unique fragrance.

8. Full of Grace face serum – Great for if you have dry skin! Although it’s meant for the face, this baby is the perfect size to rub on dry elbows or knees. It melts at body temperature so it’s probably wise to keep it in a tin or tub, to avoid making a melted mess!

7. Charity pot – The Charity Pot body lotion is so moisturising, it takes a little while for the skin to absorb it but once it does, it leaves your body feeling beautifully silky and soft. This stuff also smells fantastic, very sweet and honey like. As well as all this, profits made from this product go to charity, hence the name Charity Pot. Now what’s not to love about that?

6. Lush Makeup Range – I had to bunch a few products together for number 6 as I value them all equally, plus you can’t really have one without the other when it comes to makeup. Lush makeup is perfect for if your conscious of putting harsh products on your face, such as perfumed foundations; it’s a great alternative.

So my lush beauty routine involves Feeling Younger face cream (the perfect primer), Light Pink Colour Supplement, Emotional Brilliance translucent powder, Independent (black shade) eye liner ( brilliant for straight lines and flicks) and Eyes Right mascara.

5. Don’t rain on my parade – In my opinion one of Lush’s best smelling shower gels! This one smells like Palmer violets and the scent lasts for ages, even after its all been washed off!

4. 9 to 5 face cleanser – This stuff is very gentle on the skin and leaves it feeling beautifully soft. Since using this, my skin does feel a lot more healthier and I look a lot less tired and puffy. It’s also great for washing makeup off your face, especially if you have sensitive skin that usually reacts to normal soaps & cleansers.

3. Ros Argon Body Conditioner – The Rose Jam scent is my absolute favourite lush fragrance, so when I first smelt this body conditioner I fell in love with it instantly. Like most Lush products, it takes a little while for my skin to absorb the oils but once it does, I’m left with a beautiful silky smooth feeling and the fabulous scent lingers for ages!

2. Roots hair mask – This marvellous minty mask is perfect for fine hair. I’m sure my hair has started to grow faster and thicker since I began using this stuff. It really tingles the scalp as you massage it on and leaves your hair feeling soft and nourished afterwards.

1.Cynthia Sylvia Stout Shampoo & Veganese Conditioner – I have repeatedly bought these two time and time again as they have made my hair so so healthy. I couldn’t decide between them, so I had to bunch them together as my number one fave lush products, after all shampoo & conditioner do go hand in hand.

The shampoo leaves hair incredibly clean, I’ve gone from washing my hair every night, to washing it every couple of days or so which is far better for it. It smells lovely and leaves my hair looking shinier than ever. I think this shampoo might also be helping to strengthen my hair as I’ve had a lot less breakage since I began using it.

Veganese Conditioner is really great for my hair type as its very light, yet I don’t need to use a lot as spreads all over the hair really easily. It has a gentle lemony fragrance that lingers even after you’ve washed it all out. It’s also vegan friendly which is always a bonus.

My Beauty Saviours From Breastfeeding Induced Dehydration

I know, this post sure does have one great mouthful of a title. In fact ‘great mouthful’ is exactly the phrase that springs to mind when I reflect on my life over the past three months…. I have the greediest child ever!!

There are many perks to breastfeeding your little one. There’s no need to faff around with bottles, the milk is ready and accessible whenever you need it ( very handy at 3 o’clock in the morning, wen baby decides it’s dinner time) and of course it’s a great method for bonding with your new born. I know what you’re thinking… ‘Hurray for boobies!’ I mean, the list goes on and on, let’s not forget the many other charming delights to be experienced with breastfeeding, such as sore nipples, swollen breasts, leakage (admittedly does have its comedic values), constant drained energy ( also a symptom of general parenthood ) and chronic dehydration. So yeah, breastfeeding does come with its challenges.

Throughout the day I drink so much water to stop my body feeling like the Sahara desert, but it’s still never enough to prevent that irritating crusty dry feeling I get when waking up for night time feeds. Luckily I have found some superb products, from my favourite beauty store Lush, which help me to cope with this issue.

If there’s one thing that goes hand in hand with dehydration, it’s dry lips. A common problem many of us experience, both breastfeeders and non breastfeeders. Now I love a good lip balm, but I always seem to find myself re-applying and re-applying the stuff, until it seems to be having no effect whatsoever. Alas I have finally found a balm that agrees with my lips. I literally only have to use Lush’s Key Lime Pie lip balm once and it lasts for hours. Of course Lush do a few more flavours of lip balm but the Key Lime Pie, in my opinion, is definitely the best smelling… It’s positively scrumptious!

If you need a quick blast of refreshing water to wake you up in the morning (or during the night), then I would definitely suggest Breath of Fresh Air toner water. The bottle describes it as ‘ a sea breeze captured in a bottle’ and I can really see why. It really helps to wash away that crusty dry sleepy feeling and is a fantastic pick-me-up. I also like to use Lush’s Eau Roma Water toner as it hydrates the skin and has a lovely calming effect.

I would definitely recommend these products as a quick fix for if you don’t have time to hop in the shower or don’t have a large glass of water to hand. Perfect for tiredness, skin dehydration, dryness and other symptoms of breastfeeding.

Stretch Mark Beauty Routine

I’ve never really had to pay to much attention to the condition of my skin, apart from the odd break out of spots I get from time to time and the oiliness I suffered from as a teen, but in adult life I’ve been pretty lucky. I am now just over six months pregnant and as expected there have been some changes to my body. The quality of my skin is still pretty good (I’m very pleased to have the ‘pregnant lady glow’) however due to the rapid growth of my bum and thighs I’ve begone to develop stretch marks. Funnily enough my tummy is fine though…not a mark in sight and I’m hoping it stays that way! I must admit, I did feel quite conscious about the stretch marks when I first noticed them, even though they’re a perfectly natural thing and something that a large number of people develop at some point in life (especially during pregnancy). But this combined with my love of beauty and cosmetics seemed like the perfect excuse to try out some skin care products.

My immediate ‘go to’ product was Bio Oil, just because it was the skin care product I’d heard most about in association with stretch marks. My mum actually managed to find some lurking in the back of her medicine cupboard that had never been opened. It had been there a very long time but didn’t appear to have a sell by date on it, so I thought ‘what the heck, waste not want want not’ and I gave it a go. I’ve been using it twice a day for almost a month now and am on my second bottle, which I have to say appears to be having more of an affect than the first (maybe the old bottle from the back of my mums cupboard had gone a little out of date, I think it was about five years old to be fair). Though I have recently incorporated a few more products into my stretch mark beauty routine and started putting a few drops of the bio oil into my daily bath as well, I do think it’s starting to take the redness down and the marks seem to be beginning to fade. The bottle does advise that the product should be used for a minimum of three months, so I guess only time will tell but so far things are looking promising.

The second skin care product I’ve recently started using to keep the affected area moisturised is Sanctuary Spa’s Ultimate Salt Scrub. I bought this product because I’d read that exfoliation can help the appearance of stretch marks and when I looked it up online, I saw heaps and heaps of positive comments and reviews about the product. Although the scrub isn’t necessarily designed to help with stretch marks it contains coconut and jojoba oil, two ingredients which I’ve read are good for stretch marked skin. I absolutely love this scrub and would recommend it not only to those with stretch marks, but to anyone who is having trouble with dry skin. At first when you apply it, it does leave a sort of oily residue on the top of the skin, but once your out of the shower/bath and dried, it leaves your skin feeling silky smooth and incredibly moisturised (at least in my experiences). It also smells beautiful!!

As well as using these two products, I’ve been drinking plenty of water (to ensure I keep hydrated), eating a ton of veg (broccoli and cauliflower are my faves) and using moisturisers whenever I remember to. I’m pretty sure the marks are starting to fade and I’m hoping this will help prevent new ones from forming. Whatever happens, it can’t hurt to treat my skin to some much deserved pampering….its been lovely!!