No-Nonsense Beauty Resolutions



Now what? Out with the pies and champers and in with the shiny new gym membership and green tea smoothies with wheat grass & anti-oxidants. – Yeah right, and pigs fly!

Here are some no-nonsense new year beauty regimes you can at least attempt to do with little effort that doesn’t require signed any false promises to the hunky gym man or drinking vile grass-like liquids.

1. SPF

Up the anti with the whole SPF thing – Just make an effort to find products that say they contain it.

They all usually do but if you find yourself umm-ing and ahh-ing over two and one doesn’t have SPF protection & one has SPF protection, choose that one. – This is one the easiest ways to stop wrinkles and generally bad skin from occuring, yet people still don’t do it? Get savvy!


2. Take it off!

Your mum wasn’t being a nag when she used to say ‘scrub behind your ears!’ as you toddled off to bed when you were little… She was just being sensible. 

– My point here is, don’t just take your makeup off every night (ALWAYS DO THIS!) – Start making sure that you get the areas that are easily missed – ie, under the chin, at the hair line, neck, ears and all the crevasses like the sides of your nose/under ears. 

-Often break-outs are because you’ve just reapplied a product over old product that you missed… It may only seem like a little but every day application builds up a lot – stop the spots and get savvy!

Clarins-Instant-Eye-Makeup-Remover3. Hello H20!

The number beauty secret. It’s not rocket science; Hydration can only ever be good for your skin. Ever got back from a festival and seen your skin dry as a cornflake? That’s because the only water your body saw was the rain. 

– Drink loads and loads of water and see the difference. At the office take a bottle in so you can keep filling it up, same goes for being at home. If there’s a few bottles of water spread around the place – you’ll be more likely to pick that up than trek to the kitchen for a glass of pop… #lazy

-Try one glass an hour [That will get you to your recommended 8 glasses of a day in no time]

-No likey? Add a spritz of lemon.


4. Exfoliation Station

How many of you really exfoliate? – Okay sometimes it may feel like a genuine work-out but this can only be killing two birds with one stone right? 

Luminous skin is gorgeous! Why wouldn’t you want that? Not only does it scrub away dead skin cells, it stimulates blood circulation and increases oxygen and nutrients around the body. -That isn’t just scientific babble either. Start a new routine in your next shower.

– If you don’t have any exfoliator (come on get some it doesn’t cost the earth) – make your own! SEA SALT is a rough, coarse substance when mixed with a splash of oil, makes the perfect exfoliator. It doesn’t smell like a beautifully scented product – it’s odourless – but that’s what you get for making your own. Try it! It’s fab (and cheap as chips!)


5. Shampoo less often!

You said you wanted minimum effort? I’m giving you the go ahead to shampoo less! You can’t blame it on your hair’s personality either.. “But I have thin hair” “But my hair is too frizzy” – no, it’s nothing to do with what you’re hair-type is – it’s to do with your routine: Which you should change ASAP (unless you already do this then… you’re amaze!) –

– Wash your hair every OTHER day – not every day. At first, for the first 3 days of doing this, you might freak out a little – granted – but it’s nothing a little dry shampoo and a top-knot can’t solve..?! After that, washing your hair every other day will create healthier, stronger and fabulous hair. Do you know why? Because you’re not stripping your hair or scalp of its natural oils… Which is what you do if you wash it every day – thus, making it not the best it could be. If you’re reading this and are pretty-happy-with-your-hair-as-it-is-thank-you-very-much, imagine how much MORE amazing it could be, yup, that’s right!

-Dry Shampoo is your friend.


6. 2012/2013 is the era of nail art – right?

So if you’re going to be drawing attention to your prettily-painted-pinkies then you’ll probably want to avoid conversations like “ooh just ignore my split cuticles” and “woops sorry about the broken skin” – invest in some cuticle oil. It’s a lazy nail-addicts bezzie. 

– Did you know that your cuticles are there to stop infections/germs/bad-stuff entering your body. If you think about it, they are like little seals of the body – so you need to keep them healthy, tight and sealed so no nasty stuff can get in! – Then you can instagram the hell outta them!

o.p.I love you <3

o.p.I love you ❤

7. You are what you eat.

– This means, if you eat super-foods, you WILL be super. It’s true!

Ditch the greasy snacks – this is no good for your waist-line nor skin complexion. Even if you think you’re being healthy by swapping your McCoys to Quavers – you’re not. A handful of seeds & a bunch of strawberrys will be so much better. It just depends how serious you are about it….


8. Brush up on ‘yer brushes!

You may have noticed I’m a bit skin-complexion-obsessed at the moment – but it’s all for a reason!

It’s a basic rule but you just never know – some people have never even thought about it…. CLEAN YOUR BRUSHES.

– This should be done with surgical spirit every other day (it takes 5 minutes to dry because of the high alcohol) and with baby shampoo once a week (available from as little as 40p from Asda’s smart-price baby range).

Think about it… Day 1 – foundation, day 2 – foundation builds on day 1’s foundation, day 3 foundation builds on day 1 and day 2’s foundation – are you getting the picture?

various makeup brushes

9. Smile like you mean it (ah oooooh oooh)

Smiling is the easiest, free-est, beautiful-est way to improve your beauty/mood/impression/confidence.

Imagine a stranger catching your eye and you having a straight, expressionless face. Now, imagine catching a stranger’s eye and you give a little smile. Whether it’s a cute old lady that you just made her day with or the hot-guy-you-see-on-the-train-everyday – smiling will be a win-win situation.


Wha’dya think?

Think you can stick to these?

Think of any extra ones?




Tulisa VS Nicole


Let’s face it – any beauty addict was more excited to see what the girls’ were wearing than to hear Jahmene’s sweet warble each week. Well, I certainly was. As soon as those over-sized doors wheeled open, me and my girlfriends would analyse their looks from head to toe.

Who were you more impressed by?

Although, we know they have stylists AND makeup artists; they’re modelling the work and we, we are the judges this time.

Nicole pulls of makeup effortlessly, while Tulisa it seems has the ‘all or nothing’ situation. She looks better with a minimal, basic and natural application, don’t you think? Too much and she looks too much. While I think it’s obvious they had the same makeup artist, I think she/he played it safe but played it well.

Fashion wise: Nicole won in my eyes. Tulisa often came across a little chavvy and sometimes tacky. She cannot pull off the more daring items, where Nicole can rock the most quirky things. Don’t you think?

Take this for example, perhaps they would have been better swapping?

'The X Factor Live' TV Programme, London, Britain  - 20 Oct 2012

Oh and I’m so glad T’s blonde hair lasted as long as me on a diet… Soooo not a good look!


Anyway, you glad James won?

Were you team Nicole or Tulisa?

Nicole all the way… 

Edible perfume.. Yep, you heard!

What kind of deodorant do you use? Roll on? Spray? A balm? 

FORGET THAT! – Now you can swallow a sweet and it will keep you smelling fresh for up to SIX hours! 

Created by an American company ‘Beneo’ with help from Bulgarian confectioner Alpi – this is unfortunately not available in the UK – but i really wish it was – just to experiment – EVEN at $10 a pop!

It may be more expensive than a can of Sure, but you can’t EAT that can you!

Oh and it’s sugar-free – EVEN BETTER!

I wonder what would happen if you ate too many? 

What do you think?

Find out more info here.

o.p.I Love You!

The creme de la creme of Varnishes

A truly long-lasting nail polish is one of the great beauty time-savers. 

O.P.I needs recognition for this one fact.

I have had so so SO many nail varnishes in my life. You know what it’s like.. You buy one for the quirky colour, one for the bottle design, another for the brand and another because a friend told you about it. But, you know what’s good, and what you love. No matter how many different brands you try or much of a bargain a nail varnish may be – you keep going back to the same one. The trusty one.

In this case, it’s O.P.I.

I just can’t get enough. I could go on forever so I better keep it short & sweet (just like the varnishes themselves… hee hee). Here’s my quick review:

Product: O.P.I – Nail Lacquer

abeautybag rating: 9.99/10

A celebrity favourite, packed with pigments for depth of colour and cover.

It has a HUGE shade range, not to mention the quirky names. They are updated almost every week to reflect fashion trends & what’s hot. (This week they released ‘Skyfall’ in keeping of the James Bond Premiere release).

Upside: – Lovely shine & richness. Dried in 90 seconds. Amazing colour, good shine. Excellent coverage. No need for top coat. Lasted 9 days (and i type a lot every day, do housework, etc) – even then it didn’t look horrendous.

Downside: – Trying my HARDEST ever to critique this. I put my makeup expert head on and suggested that this nail varnish may need two coats. I, however would not see it as a downside as I apply two coats with ANY varnish I use. 

Finally, I must add, some may consider £7.99 somewhat pricey. (They are usually £11.00) – but – at The London Perfume Company they are very reasonable. All O.P.I nail varnishes are 15ml which are HUGE and last triple what a standard polish would. 

So what I’m saying is…. o.p.I LOVE YOU!


o.p.I love you ❤

Bond: Skyfall Premiere.

Wow, what a night! Full of pure glamour and sparkles. Not to mention Katie Price’s outfit & Poor Daniel Craig’s hot sweat. One particular woman looked better than everyone else! Stay tuned.

But, what we want to know is the contents of their beauty bags…. Please click HERE for more. A lot more!

Victoria’s Secret. Toni & Guy serum.
Dior Addict high shine gloss. Elizabeth Arden powder.

Go Gradient Gal!

Start from the top left hand corner and work round it like a clock.

1. Base coat – for obvious reasons.

– Apply a light coat.

2. Choose your colour scheme. I chose pink but I’ve seen it done it blue and orange and they look equally amazing!

– Get the lightest colour possible you can get your hands on. Most use white but as I didn’t have white, this pale pink was the closest (and I feel it works just as well!)

3. Apply the light colour all over your nail.

4. Take the next shade up. I chose my OPI strawberry shade nail varnish.

5. Mix with the lightest shade you used in stage 2. (Two to three drops of each should be enough for both hands). – I used a plate to mix on and a cocktail stick to mix with.

– Apply this about a third down your nail so 2/3rds are covered.

– Make sure each layer is completely dry before applying the next (or it’ll get messy!)

6. When dry, choose the shade darker than step 4. I chose my OPI shade ‘You’re a Pisa Work’ which i absolutely adore. Drop about 3 droplets of your darker shade onto the mixing plate.

7. Mix this with the remains of what you’ve been using. Add a drop of the original light varnish if needed.

8. Choose your next colour. and repeat process – This time covering only 1/3 of your nail.

9. It should look a little like this. Don’t worry about any mess – It is easily removed with a good varnish remover and precision brush.

10. You can get darker & darker but I decided to finish with a purple as this is a gradient of pink. I mainly did it because a lot of my pinks are very similar shades, so to create a thorough gradient I went with a lilac shade into a darker purple.

11. This is my lilac from OPI – shade ‘Panda Monium’.

12. Mixed into this deep purplePamplona Purple.

13. Back to top coat. Make sure you leave it dry for longer than usual.

NOTE: I’m not going to lie, it’s a little fiddly but I did manage to do it first time. If you find it difficult, don’t be disheartened – give it a try – afterall; practise makes perfect!

E-scent-ually slimming..?

What’s your diet secret?

We’ve had slimming trainers, books that make you thin and ‘skinny patches’.

Well, here we go again!

France have beaten the rest of the world to it and designed their very own product that promises to suppress appetite and help you lose weight, AND it has a 6000 person waiting list in the UK!

‘What is it?!’ You ask with pure anticipation, that’s if your excitable eyes haven’t already skipped down the page to sneak the answer first.

It’s perfume of course!

The world’s ‘first weight loss fragrance’ is designed to slim with pleasure and is based on ‘extensive aroma-therapeutic research’ – so, well, it must work!

So how does it suppress your appetite?

Does it smell like a bin?

Surprisingly, no. 

The instructions are to spray it generously in the morning and re-apply when you feel the need to snack and any cravings occur. It focuses on a ‘pleasurable experience’ rather than attach itself to the negative connotations of being hungry. The ‘slimming complex’ formulated with caffeine, carnitine and spirulina extract activates the two key enzymes directly involved in lipolysis (or in normal-speak: fat degradation).

There are top notes of bergamot, mandarin and grapefruit – which obviously combine to create a very fruity and fresh scent. [Perhaps it’s smells so sweet it puts you off anything, ever.?]

It’s called Prends Moi and if you want it, like I said, you’ll have to get in line behind the 6,000 optimistic people of the UK. It is £29.99 and can be found in The Fragrance Shop. So, what are you waiting for?

Results have shown that 75% of people it was tested on ‘felt the perfume limited the need to snack’, while 73% ‘felt a feeling of pleasure’.

So, it must be right… right?

Well, until we get a whiff of it for ourselves, we’ll never know.

What do you think?




Tips & Tricks: Beauty dilemma’s – solved!

Whether you have a beauty dilemma or you’re just picking up some new tips & tricks of the trade. You won’t be disappointed!

Problem: I love my [insert high-street shop here] costume jewellery but they always leave me with a green [delete as appropriate] neck/wrist/finger/earlobe.

Solution: Don’t worry. This really, really works…

Simply get some clear nail varnish, or the nearest to clear you have, and coat it all around the underneath of the jewellery (basically the bits that you don’t see but touches your skin). For example, on a ring, all around the band and underneath the design: It works a treat. No more green fingers!

Problem: You can see there’s lipgloss in the tube, yet you can’t get it out. How annoying!

Solution: Pour boiling water into a mug, drop the lipgloss tube in it for a couple of minutes (leave the end with the lid at the top & make sure you can still pick it up). The heat will loosen up the product and will unstick so you can scoop the rest out. (This also works with Mascaras in tubes – or anything else gel-like).

Problem: Your nail varnish won’t dry and you need it to – quickly!

Solution: Sounds crazy but trust us here. Coating your wet nails in cooking spray will help them dry very quickly. ‘Frylight’ is probably the most popular one you’ve heard of. (Just make sure you use the original flavour to avoid garlic-y finger-tips!) The normal one doesn’t smell at all and it’s just a case of wiping away the excess oil after.

Problem: But I don’t have cooking spray in my house?!

Solution: Don’t worry! Something you definitely will have is ice. Everyone has ice. After painting your nails, simply slide your nails into a bowl of ice water and after a minute (brrr) your nails will be completely dry! Not only this, but any smudges or mistakes you made will have fallen off. Score.

Problem: My feet are sore/achey/flakey – but I can’t afford to get a pedicure/it’s midnight and going to get a pedicure now is highly inappropriate.

Solution: Whatever your situation, you want soft, healthy feet again right? Well have you got some socks & some moisturiser or Vaseline? Good. Simply douse, smother and pile on your choice of moisturiser to your feet. [It doesn’t even have to be an expensive/high-end one] – pull your socks over and leave for a couple of hours. For best results, do this before your go to bed and pull off your socks in the morning – you will revel in the difference, promise.

Problem: None! Because abeautybag has solved them all.


You’re welcome.


Paris Fashion Week’s influence on my beauty bag…

After seeing London Fashion Week kick off (and kick ass) last week; I was inspired. And so was my beauty bag. So inspired, I wrote a blog about it, here.

So Paris Fashion Week arrived and I was eager with anticipation to see that the trends and fashion have focused on similar areas. Catwalks are no longer just about the art of material and clothing but the art of beauty, makeup and cosmetics. So, being a beauty-addict – I watched closely.

Reoccurring themes of ‘go hard or go home’ appeared. Okay not quite as brutal, but it was a case of ‘wear strong colours or don’t bother at all’.

Nina Ricci
The impact of a deep red lipstick

The rule that most beauty-addicts would adhere to would be dramatic eyes OR dramatic lips – notice I said OR, not AND – either or and you’ll be safe. To do both you need a seriously professional eye (and a seriously good reason), you’ll only really see what I call ‘circus makeup’ on high-end fashion shoots & campaigns for high-impact. So the photo above, I love. The deep rouge lips make this whole look, just look back at the photo and imagine her with pale lips – rubbish huh? This lipstick makes the clothes look like something else! However, now look back and imagine her with heavy black eye makeup on – rubbish again! … Makeup is a magical thing.

Something else I took from Paris Fashion Week’s parade of beauty, was an innovative way to use eyeliner. It has to be liquid eyeliner to get the desired effect. Look! You’ll know what I mean…

Paris Fashion Week:
The new eye-shadow!

You like? I do! I predict it’s going to be the new eyeshadow. Where eyeshadow is dated, a little predictable and let’s face it, a bit tedious – a simple line of colour gives that edge and is moving makeup in a new direction.

All taken into account, this will take quite a while to catch on and to move into the mainstream beauty trends. But it will come, it will come… and i’m excited!

Another example of ‘eye-lines’ – The new eyeshadow

SO #bbloggers and makeup addicts all over the world. Two things…

1. High-impact lipsticks. [Red is a timeless classic]

2. Ditch the eyeshadow – Get creative with beautiful lines of colour!

I will leave you with some more examples of how a strong lipstick can change your outfit. [Remember: imagine them with no lipstick on]. Told you.

Clashing army green with a pinky-red — Who’d have thunk it?!

Stunning red lips enhance the light blue blouse.

Classic red lips against white.
Match with a simple red hair accessory, perfect!


*[DISCLAIMER: All photos have been taken from Pinterest & each one is linked back to the original source]