28 February 2015

LUSH Haul | Final Year Skincare

I've been meaning to put this piece up since, well, New Years (hence the Christmas tree in the background of me and my mum with the facemask). We all know that I'm a bit of a LUSH fan, and when i got given some vouchers for Christmas I couldn't help but have a bit of a skincare splurge. I'm going to review them in a bit more detail at some point, but on the whole I'm really impressed with everything I bought. For once I actually headed in and got the advice of all the LUSH specialists and they gave me some really great ideas, including advising me to buy the Angels on Bare Skin facewash!

As it's final year now, my stress levels are probably at their peak - juggling two part time jobs, two blogs, an exec position on a journal, reading manuscripts for a publishing company and actually doing my degree work/attempting to keep the 4 boys I live with in line means I have hardly any time to breathe, and have to keep my energy levels up. Your skin is something which really shows the world when you're down on nutrition and energy levels - it can get grey, you start getting more spots and you lose any sense of it being toned. This is why these LUSH products have saved me over the past few months - using the BB Seaweed facemask once a week and Angels on Bare Skin + toner at least every other day means that my skin hasn't lost all of its vivacity.

What are your skincare secrets during busy/stressful times?

Love and Light,

**All photos are property of Sophie Hartley**

19 February 2015

Antioxidant Green Smoothie

This smoothie and my Candy Cane Lane Yankee candle have been getting me through the gloomy start to 2015 that we seem to have been having here in the UK. I'm renowned amongst my friends and family as being someone who perpetually has a cold, however, having a smoothie like this everyday seems to have kept things down to a minor sniffle here and there. Anyway, with kiwi, spinach and blueberries packed into this smoothie (amongst other things), this is absolutely brilliant on topping you up with some much needed antioxidants, as well as sneaking 5 fruits and vegetables into one handy drink that you can take on-the-go!


1 banana
3 apples
1 kiwi
Handful of blueberries
Handful of spinach
150ml rice/almond/soya milk
Sprinkling of flaxseeds

1.) Peel and slice the banana, kiwi and apples and put in a blender. My apple chopping device seen below is definitely one of my top favourites when it comes to manual kitchen appliances!

2.) Place the spinach, rice milk, blueberries and flaxseeds in the blender.

3.) Blend for 2-3 minutes. I always like to add a drizzle of honey, but chia seeds, oats and ground almonds can be a great topping too!

Any comments/questions are always appreciated

Love and Light

12 February 2015

The Body Shop's Moringa Range

If you've been following me for a while, you'll probably know that The Body Shop's Vineyard Peach range is my favourite scent of all time. However, their moringa stuff has now come pretty close, if not topping it. It has a really light, slightly floral scent (without smelling like someting your grandmother would wear). Also, in case you're wondering about the top picture, it's the Body Shop stuff I was lucky enough to receive from my generous, and very large family for Christmas!

The Moringa body butter was my go-to moisturiser when I headed to Spain in June. It was my first time abroad in a number of years and I knew I'd really be in need of something to keep my skin from drying out in the heat. Often body butters can be a bit intense to use every day, but this is exactly what I needed whilst in Malaga. It kept my skin soft and supple in the heat even through to the evening.
p.s. Reminiscing on the summer sun is a great cure for impatience at a very cold February!

What is your go-to holiday moisturiser?

Love and Light

8 February 2015

Adaptation of Jess My Clean Treats' Clean Double Chocolate and Banana Brownies

This brownies are delicious beyond words - and ridiculously simple to make dairy free (woo!). I've borrowed and slightly adapted this recipe from the wonderful Jess over at My Clean Treats - check her out for a whole wealth of delicious, healthy sweet snacks! You can find the original recipe here. My housemates, who seem to view clean eating as some kind of dirty phrase, instead loving a good ol' portion of cheesy chips and kebab ~ sigh ~ , couldn't tell the difference between these and normal calorie and fat laden ones! These are definitely my favourite treat at the moment, and are perfect for Spring-time picnics, or a little pick-me-up to keep you going until the weather improves. 


256 grams wholewheat plain flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 heaped tablespoons cacao powder

350g Sweet Freedom natural syrup from fruit

1.5 tablespoons coconut oil

3 mashed bananas

235ml rice milk

2 eggs

100g vegan/dark chocolate

Handful of chia seeds

1.) Preheat oven to 180 degrees.

2.) Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and cacao into a bowl and add the chia seeds. Stir.

3.) Pour the rice milk and syrup into a bowl and mix as well as possible.

4.) Place the coconut oil and the dark chocolate block (broken up) into a saucepan and melt together. Add to the second bowl (wet ingredients bowl). 

5.) Mash the banana and add to the wet ingredients bowl. Stir well.

6.) Combine the wet and dry mixtures. Stir until they are thoroughly mixed. 

7.) Place baking paper into a baking tray and pour the mixture in.

8.) Cook for 25 minutes. Enjoy whilst still warm - this is my favourite way!

Love and Light