Monday, 16 October 2017


For many years now I have been lucky enough to start my December off, here in South Africa,
 with 24 days of chocolate treats from one of the UK Chocolate Advent Calendars.
Their selection on offer each year just seems to grow and the choice becomes increasingly
more difficult and this year is no exception.

I have had a "choccy" calendar every year since being a child and it just wouldn't be  
Christmas without one.As you can imagine this tradition has been passed onto my 
"kiddie winks" and they too, along with hubby, all have to go through the
daily door opening ritual throughout December.

However since moving to South Africa its proved to be
 more of a challenge, but by hook or by crook I've managed to get four from the UK
every year, which makes opening those daily doors even more exciting.
(Yes I am in my 50's).

Below I have listed just a few of this years favourites, but the Baileys one would be
a problem to get out to SA. 

If you are a Baileys devotee then this advent calendar will most probably 
deserve a top spot on your advent calendar shopping list this year. 
It contains 23 mini Baileys truffles and a miniature bottle of the creamy 
liqueur behind door 24. 
Don't deliberate too long though, as this boozy beauty is fast selling out everywhere.

Baileys Advent Calendar 

We all love a Lindt chocolate bear and with this advent calendar you get to eat one Lindt mini animal 
everyday for 23 days in December and a big one on the 24th.
Lindt Teddy Bear Advent House

We will have a similar one available in South Africa

Godiva's 25 day advent calendar is chocolate luxury and features a selection of their creamy and 
delicious seasonal flavoured chocolates, as well as some of their classics.
Available at boutiques and concessions (including Selfridges and John Lewis) nationwide.
Godiva Christmas Advent Calendar 

This Lindt Lindor 24 doors chocolate advent calendar contains six different flavour 
Lindor truffles, plus a Milk Treat Bar on Christmas Eve. 
Exclusive to Sainsbury's.
Lindor advent calendar

This Fortnum & Mason's exclusive 24 day wooden advent calendar isn't strictly
 a chocolate advent calendar, 
as it comes filled with an 'exciting selection of sweets and chocolates' including sugar mice, 
dolly mix and chocolate coins.
If however you are more a sweetie than a chocolate lover, then this is a great luxurious 
and rather pricey, alternative option.

Fortnum & Mason's Wooden Advent Calendar


If I were to mention ingredients that are sourced from 
White Mushrooms, Arnica Montana Flower and Bakers Yeast, 
you may think that I was about to share with you a food recipe, 
but you're mistaken, as these are the three KEY components of a new mask that was 
launched earlier this month by the Skincare brand


also just happens to be the first product from this brand that I have ever tried.

This new mask from their extensive EVERCALM range has been formulated with the 
REN exclusive complex of ingredients and as the name suggests its focus is to 
instantly and forever calm, soothe, moisturise and alleviate the key signs of a sensitive skin.

White Mushroom Extract:
 A naturally derived painkiller for skin and contains elements that act as a topical
analgesics to effectively block the message of pain.

Reduces redness, inflammation, burning and itching.

(Bakers Yeast) Supports skin’s natural immune and barrier functions and
is also a potent anti-bacterial and antihistamine.

I personally don't have a sensitive or over-reactive skin, but that doesn't 
mean that there haven't been times where my skin has reacted
to the sun or a stimulating product and as I've always said here on my blog that
 any skin type can use products 
formulated for a sensitive or allergic prone skin quite happily
 and I have several in my daily beauty regime that I just adore.

Let's just touch on what a sensitive skin is all about, as it can be highly reactive 
to physical,environmental and lifestyle factors.
 This could be seen and felt on the skin as redness, irritation, itchiness or dryness to 
mention just a few the symptoms.
Often these can be experienced on a daily and more permanent basis, 
whilst others experience these symptoms only occasionally.
I'm sure most of us have experienced skin sensitivity at some stage and I know that
 on those occasions, we look for a product to bring comfort and relief to the skin.

The REN Evercalm Ultra Comforting Rescue Mask helps treat the cause of 
skin sensitivity, not just the symptoms, as it goes one step further to 
block the message of irritation to the brain, therefore preventing the
 symptoms that we see and experience as sensitive skin! 
With continual usage the mask will help to strengthen the natural protective 
moisture barrier, aid recovery and increase the skins own natural ability to cope 
with stress and ultimately re balance the skin.

This mask is packaged in a sealed pump container and it's easy to dispense an 
accurate amount of product (both of which I like)
The texture of the mask was surprisingly thick, yet creamy and somewhat heavier
 in comparison to other masks I've tried for sensitive and fragile skins.

Along with its clean fresh fragrance and its obvious "I've got a mask on" feel it reminded me of the
 "old style" non drying moisturising face masks and I have to admit it was a refreshing change to use.
It gives your skin that sensation of being bathed in soothing, calming comfort and 
I would imagine it would be an absolute blanket of relief to a stressed sensitive skin.
It left my skin feeling soft, whilst giving my skin a noticeable, more even tone.

This 10-minute rescue mask is a "best friend" for skin that is red, blotchy, 
irritated, sunburned, wind-chapped, dry, stressed, or jet-lagged.
I'm off on a beach holiday next month and this mask will definitely 
be coming along with. 

Apply a generous amount 2-3 a week on clean skin, avoid the eye area and 
leave for just 10 minutes and then remove the excess 
with a damp cloth or cotton pad, follow with your usual skincare and that's all it 
takes to have a


This product is cruelty-free, vegan, noncomedogenic, and formulated without gluten. 
Free from Parabens, Sulphates and synthetic fragrances, mineral oil.

This mask doesn't come cheap, but for a truly reactive and sensitive skin this will
be a small price to pay for the comfort, relief and ongoing strengthening that this mask will bring...

REN Evercalm Ultra Comforting Rescue Mask




Available in store from selected Woolworths and online

Sunday, 15 October 2017


It's surprising how many spritzes you can get out of a 2ml vial fragrance spray, which meant that I used my FLOWERBOMB Eau de Parfum sample from designers VICTOR&ROLF several times during the past week.

Initially I wasn't a fan of the heady whirlwind mix of Gourmand and floral top notes, which I found to be quite intense and sweet, so it didn't do it for me, but then on the dry down I did somewhat enjoy the softness of the Freesia, Rose, Patchouli and then the linger of Amber and Musk.
Created in 2005 FLOWERBOMB is classified as an Oriental/Warm fragrance and therefore develops better in a colder climate and I found it to be too heady and intense even in the Durban winter. 
Despite having a loyal fan base worldwide, its beautiful bottle and delicate pink packaging this fragrance just wasn't for me, but if you're a fan of FLOWERBOMB notes then this could be one to consider, so next time you're passing a fragrance counter give yourself a spritz.

Top Notes:

Middle Notes:

Base Notes:
Deep Amber
Warm Vanilla


30ml EDP Spray

Available from selected Red Squares and online

Thursday, 12 October 2017


This is sadly the last post giving you the heads up as to what beauty advent calendars are on offer in the UK for 2017.
I have chosen my personal "faves", but there are so many more on offer from various brands and companies and at a variety of price points.
I love bringing you these posts every year, especially as in South Africa these Advent Calendars work out to be too expensive for most of the houses to launch here, 
but hopefully one year they will...


Advent Calendar

How much



November 2017
Behind the Doors

This Diptyque calendar is one of the few that actually offer a gift on the 25th, making it truly special. 25 days of divine gifts of fragrances for  both the home and for you, what more could you ask for...


Jo Malone 
24 day Advent Calendar 

How much 



October 2017 (exclusively to Harrods)
November 2017 nationwide

Behind the Doors

This Jo Malone' 24 doors Advent Calendar is my "Lust Have" , as it's a mixture of their legendary fragrances and scented candles and in my opinion the ultimate in advent offerings.


Marks & Spencer Beauty
Advent Calendar

How much 
£35 when you spend £35 on clothing and home


9th November 2017

Behind the Doors

This 24 day beauty advent calendars isn't brand-specific,as M&S’ have rounded up some of the best brands from their beauty counters. Featuring REN, NUXE, Pixi, Percy and Reed, Nails Inc. to name just a few.

To read my Advent Calendar posts for

Tuesday, 10 October 2017


I haven't lifted out a sample of fragrance from my sample jar for quite a while, so this week I will be trying out the VIKTOR&ROLF Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum.
This pricey perfume has been around since 2005, so it's nothing new, but I have never tried it before.
 However I do know that it has a huge following, but will I be one of those followers ?

Check back on Sunday to find out.

Monday, 9 October 2017


(Rafflecopter randomly chose Hanneri Bothas winning entry and it was an entry done via following me on Twitter)

Hanneri please send me an e.mail with your delivery address, so I can send you this super beauty hamper.

This is the last of my 5 weeks of Birthday Giveaways and I would just like to say to all that have entered, shared, liked and followed....