Posts tagged Magazine

Loot Crate Villains 2


It’s been a while since I last signed up to a (non-edible!) subscription box, and I’d been missing that buzz of getting a nice surprise through the post each month, so lately I’ve been on the lookout for a new one to trial. I was looking for something featuring collectible items rather than beauty products or anything like that, and I knew exactly where to turn for recommendations. One of my favourite bloggers, Chrissie of Plus10Kapow, regularly reviews popular subscription boxes, and after seeing her publish several positive reviews about Loot Crate, I decided to take the plunge and sign up for a one-off box, just to see whether I like it or not.

Loot Crate are a US-based company founded in 2012, who each month ‘ships a themed mystery box of the best geek, gaming, and pop culture gear to a subscriber base of over 100,000 Looters’.  From what I’ve seen their boxes are always well thought out and beautifully curated to suit a theme – something that a lot of other subscription services just don’t quite manage to get the hang of. The box I signed up for was the August Villains 2 box, which is quite possibly one of the best themes for me as I do love myself a supervillain! Loot Crate released their first Villains box last year, and this one is the sequel to that.

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I ordered my crate on 19th August, and after much impatient waiting it finally arrived on 1st September, which was a little later than most people’s, so it was incredibly difficult to avoid content spoilers online!

I was expecting to find six or seven items in the box, as this seems to be the norm according to the reviews I’ve seen, but this month there were only four (plus the usual magazine and badge). However, all four items are high-end and good quality, and according to Chrissie’s calculations are worth a whopping £65.04 if bought separately online!

So, here’s all the loot!

Captain America Hydra Pin Badge

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Pins and badges are one of the many things that I collect, so it was nice to find one of such great quality in the box.  This Hydra pin is very well made, and has a double pin on the back.  I reckon this would look awesome on a simple black jacket.

DC Collectibles Wooden Joker

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As a lifelong Batman fan this wooden Joker figure was my absolute favourite item in the crate.  There’s just something so nostalgic about it as I remember having toys like this when I was younger, and the changeable faces and poseable arms make this figure even more fun.  I can see myself collecting more of these in the future (I’ve got my eye on a Batman one I’ve seen), but this one is extra special as it’s a Loot Crate exclusive.

Carnage 16oz Mug

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There were two villainous mug designs being sent out in this crate – Venom, and Carnage, which is the one I received.  My fiancé is more of a Marvel fan than I am (I’m a DC girl), so he was especially pleased with this.  The mug is a good size and makes a nice addition to our ever-expanding mug collection, although for some reason I can see it being used for make up brushes or pens rather than tea!

Los Pollos Hermanos Apron

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I love Breaking Bad and I do a lot of cooking, so this apron was a great addition to the box.  The quality of the apron is really high, and the colours are nice and vibrant (although you can’t tell in the picture… my camera dislikes yellow for some reason!).  This is something that I’d probably buy myself, and the exact same apron is currently being sold on Amazon for over £14.

Badge and Magazine

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Every Loot Crate includes a badge to match the monthly theme, and a magazine. This month’s badge feature’s Venom’s spiky smile, and I absolutely love the Joker art on the front of the magazine. When I first saw the magazine at the bottom of the box I thought it was a print, which really excited me as I’d definitely hang this on my wall.  In fact, I was slightly disappointed that it wasn’t. Perhaps something for Loot Crate to consider in the future?

So, after receiving my first Loot Crate I must say I’m impressed.  Everything about it is fantastic – the premium items, the attention to detail, even the fun design inside the box.  A monthly subscription to Loot Crate costs just under $30 (about £20), or you can sign up for 3 month, 6 month of yearly packages at a discounted rate. I had a $3 off discount code and ordered a monthly box, making this one $26.95 (a little over £18), with free delivery. For what you get, and the combined total worth of each item, the Villains 2 box was without a doubt worth the money. I’m definitely considering keeping my subscription open for longer!

Are you signed up to Loot Crate? What were your thoughts on the Villains 2 crate?

Naomi x

Freebie Alert! Models Own with More Magazine


I know we all love a good freebie, so I thought I would let you know about a great one I found today whilst browsing the supermarket!  Every copy of this week’s More magazine (Issue 774) comes with a FREE Models Own nail varnish or lip gloss, worth £5.00 each.  The magazine only costs so £1.50, so you are getting a VERY good deal!  Even if you buy four copies to get every freebie, you are still only spending £1 more than ONE of these freebies is worth – amazing, right?  Oh and don’t be put off by the low price tag of the magazine…  I know some cheap magazine freebies are ‘limited editions’ which aren’t actually up to scratch with the rest of the brand, but this is the real deal.

There are two nail varnish shades to choose from (Raspberry Crush and Nude Beige), and two lip glosses (a pink and a red).  The freebie I went for was Raspberry Crush, a gorgeous raspberry pink which I actually had my eye on a couple of months ago – I’m glad I didn’t buy it at the time now!  I haven’t yet tried Raspberry Crush on my nails, but it looks like it has a lovely creme finish and I can’t wait to give it a go.

The magazine also comes with a free Miss Selfridge Lucky Gift Card, which gives you a surprise discount in store, between £1 and £500.  There are also several other exclusive discounts in the magazine, such as 20% off at, Rock N Rose, Essensuals Hairdressing and Motel, and 25% off a spray tan at the Tanning Shop.  Oh and a couple of free drinks too.

The magazine itself might be a little bit trashy, but who cares when you’re getting a bargain as brilliant as this?!  The next issue of More goes on sale on the 27th of November, so you have 4 days left to get your Models Own freebie.

Naomi x

Glamour Freebie: Balance Me Rose Otto Intensive Lip Salve


Last Thursday was the day that the August issues of the women’s glossies hit the shops.  After a fantastic month of magazine freebies last month (Benefit AND Ciaté – wow) I wasn’t expecting to find anything too thrilling this time, but was pleased to see that Glamour were giving away products from the natural skincare brand, Balance Me.  I had heard of Balance Me before and had been keen to try their lip salve for a while, so of course this was the freebie that I went for!  Balance Me Rose Otto Intensive Lip Salve.

I really like Balance Me’s packaging – I think the simple white tube and basic font with a swirl of colour is really classy and pretty.  I’m also pleased the salve is accented with purple as that’s my favourite colour haha.

The salve comes in a lip gloss style squeezy tube, but unlike gloss it isn’t sticky.  In fact, it’s probably the creamiest lip salve I have EVER used.  You only need a tiny amount to cover both of your lips, say, a 2mm blob, and it smoothes your lips as soon as you apply it.  I tend to use my finger to put it on instead of the tube applicator as too much comes out of the tube if you do it that way.  As you can see below, the salve has a yellow tinge to it.  This is the only thing I don’t like about this product as I think it looks a bit like earwax – not good!

The best thing about this salve, for me, is the smell, as well as the fact that it is 100% natural in origin!  It is scented with various essential oils, including several different Rose oils, Ylang Ylang, Mango, Lavender, Red Mandarin and Patchouli, amongst others, and they combine to give a strong scent which is really quite fantastic.  I put this on whilst in the car the other day and everybody else in the car could smell it and commented on how lovely it was.  I can even smell it on myself when I’m wearing it which is quite pleasant!  Some of the ingredients used to make the salve so moisturising are Virgin Coconut, Beeswax, Sweet Almond, Shea, Jojoba and Cocoa Butter.

The tube claims that the lip salve ‘plumps, smoothes and hydrates’.  Though the latter two are true, I haven’t yet felt or seen any plumping effects from it, but that’s fine by me as plumping products tend to irritate my skin!  I’ve definitely noticed a difference to the texture of my lips though…  They’re quite obviously softer and they feel protected when I have it on.

Balance Me are a UK based company which pleases me as I am a huge advocate of supporting British business.  This is honestly the best lip salve I have used, and I will be buying another tube once this one runs out.  It’s just beautiful!

Which Glamour freebie did you choose this month?

Naomi xx

Glamour Freebie: Benefit BADgal Lash Mascara


After much deliberation I caved and ended up buying two copies of Glamour this month, just for the freebies!  The first copy I bought contained this, the BADgal Lash Mascara, and the copy I bought today contained a little tube of Porefessional which I’ve been dying to try, but I’ll be reviewing that another day.

The mascara you get with the magazine is not full-size, but you do get a generous 4g, which is about half the size of the £16.50 big tube.  Not bad for £2, the price of the magazine!

Magazine freebies rarely come packaged in boxes, and neither do samples, so that and the slick black and silver tube immediately make this product look classy and high end.

When I first opened the tube I was really surprised to see such a big, bristly brush.  I don’t usually like chunky brushes as they tend to hold too much product which can make application a bit gloopy and thick, but this one looked promising as it wasn’t too loaded with mascara.

When I initially applied the mascara I didn’t think it had made much difference, but I was wrong.  The first thing my mum said to me after I’d put it on was something along the lines of  “wow, your eyes look nice”.  I looked in the mirror again and I realised that, actually, this is a very good mascara!

BADgal Lash is a very, very deep black so it makes your eyelashes really stand out.  It doesn’t clump either which means that your lashes stay separate, giving the false lash look that this mascara boasts.  The best thing about it for me though is that your eyelashes stay soft.  I’ve tried countless mascaras in my life and most of them have made my eyelashes feel stiff, which can make your eyes a bit sore, but BADgal is so light that you can hardly tell you’re wearing it, so your lashes feel supple and natural.

My mum has always struggled with mascara as her lashes aren’t the longest, so it never makes much difference on her, or it blobs all over her eyelids and makes a mess.  I let her try this one out and we were both amazed – her lashes looked longer and darker, but still natural, and there was no mess whatsoever.  It didn’t smudge either when she rubbed her eyes, which is fantastic!  And contrary to what other reviews have said about BADgal, it has lasted all day on both of us.

My overall thoughts on this?  A truly impressive product and very high quality!  If only I could afford to spend £16.50 on one mascara haha.

Naomi x

Marie Claire Freebie: Ciaté Paint Pot in ‘Purple Sherbet’


Thursday was an exciting day in the world of the beauty fanatic as it was the day that July’s women’s glossies hit the shops!  There were some great freebies this month but being the pauper that I am I couldn’t have them all, so I went for two – Glamour with the free Benefit Bad Gal Mascara sample (which I’ll be reviewing tomorrow… I may also pick up another copy for the Porefessional), and Marie Claire with a free full size Ciaté Paint Pot!  I have been wanting to try Ciaté nail varnish for AGES so I was sooo excited when I spotted this.  The freebie comes in three shades – a beigey pink colour, a bright pink called ‘Jelly Bean’, and the lovely lilac ‘Purple Sherbet’ that I went for.

Out of all the nail varnishes I own I think this Ciaté Paint Pot is my favourite in terms of looks.  The large curved bottle, tall slim lid, Ciaté logo and cute black bow are really elegant and would look lovely on any nail varnish display!  I’m also really impressed with the amount of product you get in each bottle.  Most of the full size varnishes that I own contain somewhere between 7ml and 12ml of product, but the paint pots are all a whopping 13.5ml.

When I applied the Ciaté paint the first thing I noticed was that it didn’t smell horrible!  As I’m sure you know, a lot of nail varnishes smell very strong, but Ciaté’s are all 3-free so there are no nasty chemicals to stink the room out and make your eyes water.  They’re also not tested on animals which endears me to them even more!

Now, the application itself was absolutely beautiful.  The paint is very creamy and the perfect consistency so there’s no running or glooping.  I usually find that pastel nail colours need three or four coats to create an opaque look, but with this I only needed two, which is great as it means the bottle will last me even longer!  The brush is quite wide so it applied easily with no streaking, and it dried fantastically quickly. It has a jelly finish too which is my all time favourite finish :)

The above picture was taken a day after I applied it, and I’m not wearing a top coat. It still hasn’t chipped or peeled either which suggests amazing lasting power!!

I’m also really impressed with the shade of this ‘Purple Sherbet’.  I’ve tried pastel lilac colours before and they’ve had a grey or blue tinge, making them look a bit dull, but Ciaté’s has a gorgeous pink hue so it looks nicely girly.  My mum is in love with the colour too and wants some for herself!  I better hide it I think.

We all know really that companies give products away with magazines as advertising, and this time it has worked on me – I am now a complete Ciaté convert!  I know I’m going to have to buy some more at some point.  Ciaté Paint Pots usually retail for £9 each, so they are DEFINITELY worth the £3.70 that you pay for the magazine…  Oh and there is also a 25% off Ciaté voucher code printed in the magazine as an extra bonus, but you might as well just buy a few copies of Marie Claire if you want more than one colour!

Which glossy mags did you buy this month for the freebies?

Naomi xx

Glamour Freebie: Percy & Reed Splendidly Silky Moisturising Conditioner


Yesterday afternoon I mentioned that I had bought the April issue of Glamour Magazine for £2, and received this 100ml tube of Percy & Reed’s Splendidly Silky Moisturising Conditioner free with it.  The magazine states that this simple and funky looking hair treat is worth £11, and is described as being ‘A luscious, yet light blend of grape seed oil, sweet almond oil and aloe vera, which will help to restore natural softness’.

I used the conditioner this morning during my morning hair washing routine, after shampooing with my usual shampoo.  My hair gets quite greasy at the roots but drier towards the ends, so I rubbed a 10p sized amount of the conditioner into my hair from a few inches below the roots, downwards.  After leaving the conditioner in for one minute for, as the tube says, ‘extra conditioning’, I washed the it out thoroughly.  I then blow dried and straightened my hair as usual.

The first thing I noticed about the conditioner was the smell.  Having read that it contains grape seed, almond and aloe vera, I was expecting it to have a lovely sweet, fresh scent, but it actually smells quite chemically.  I made my mum have a sniff of it and she said it reminded her of public toilets after they’ve been cleaned – not nice at all!

Bad smell aside, the conditioner actually worked wonders on my hair.  I noticed immediately that my hair felt slightly smoother after being blow dried, which meant that straightening it was easier.  I asked my other half to feel my hair earlier today and he said that it felt softer than usual, and I have to say it really does feel ‘splendidly silky’!  Not only that, my hair has looked fuller all day, and has kept its bounce without going lank.

I’m not sure if I’d be willing to pay full price for this product, but as a freebie with a £2 magazine you are getting a fantastic deal.  No other conditioner has had such a quick effect on my hair before and I will definitely continue using this Percy & Reed Moisturising Conditioner!

Which Percy & Reed freebie did you get with your copy of Glamour mag?

Naomi x

This Week’s Beauty Haul


This week I’ve treated myself to a few nice new things, all of them bargain buys as well which makes them all that little bit more awesome!

Today, from Superdrug, I bought a copy of Glamour magazine for £2 and MUA Pressed Powder in Shade 1 for £1.  I don’t usually buy Glamour magazine, but the April issue comes with a free 100ml tube of a Percy & Reed hair product!  There’s four to collect and in total they’re worth £43, making them £10.75 each – well worth the £2 I paid for the magazine!  I went for the Moisturising Conditioner.

The Myleene Klass Nail Wraps were a snip at £2 (I bought them from someone on a forum who was selling them for her mum).  I’ve been wanting to try nail wraps for a while so I couldn’t pass up the chance to get these!

I also bought three Rimmel Colour Rush Mono Eye Shadows in (from top to bottom) Tempted, Siren and Envy, which I’m really looking forward to trying out.

Yesterday, on eBay, I won a batch of 15 nail varnishes for just £6.10!  They’re all new, swatched once or only used a couple of times, and there’s a mix of different brands including Models Own, Ruby & Millie, 17 Magnetic polish, Andrea Fullerton, Orly, Revlon and others.  So excited about receiving them!

I’m going to review each of these products over the next few weeks so please check back soon to see what I have to say!  What have you been buying lately?

Thanks for reading,

Naomi x

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