Hello everyone, I’m Alina and I’ve recently won Best Interiors Blog at Cosmopolitan’s Blog Awards 2014 with The Fairytale Pretty Picture! As the lovely Beth has invited me to give you some tips at this very merry time I thought I’ll help with a useful Christmas checklist.

Here are my top three things for the festive period…

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1. Decoration

It’s super important to me the way my home looks during Christmas as it probably makes up most of that ‘Christmas feeling’ itself! What I mean is that I want to feel festive at home and so I decorate my tree, add lights, wreaths and plot pretty ornaments here and there.

I love to go with a theme or stick to a colour scheme. This year I’ve gone for that tartan look with red and green leading the way. I’ve also added a modern twist to it with adding highlights of icy white to complete that winter look.

Top Tip: don’t forget to appease all of your senses; add a festive cinnamon candle or sweet smelling potpourri.

Hello everyone! For those who don’t know me, I’m India from Touchscreens & Beautyqueens. I’m really excited to be guest posting for Beth, as I’ve been reading her blog for a long time!

I love Christmas but as a student-turned graduate, affording presents isn’t exactly easy for me. This year, I decided to go DIY for some of my presents. I’ve made some garlic and chilli dipping oil for my bread loving dad, and for my sweet toothed step brother I’m making this salted caramel fudge with a dark chocolate topping. It is unbelievably delicious (my practise fudge got eaten within an hour at work!) and lasts for a couple of weeks in the fridge, or a couple of months in the freezer so it’s a lot more practical than cookies etc.

Fudge edit

 

You’ll need…
An air tight food jar (this one was from B&M Bargains!)
1 can of condensed milk (397g)
150ml milk
450g Demerara sugar
115g salted butter
400g white chocolate
100g dark chocolate (try and go for above 70% cocoa solids)
½ tsp salt
Tin, lined with greased baking paper
Candy thermometer*

  – Place the condensed milk, milk, sugar and butter in a non-stick pan and cook over a low heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves.

- Bring to the boil and then immediately simmer (if you have electric hobs, use two hobs: one on a low-medium heat, one on high; switch the pan onto the high heat to boil, then back on to the low-medium heat to simmer) for 10 – 15 minutes, until the mixture reaches 118 degrees.

- Take off the heat.

- Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, in 10 second bursts. Pour it into the fudge mixture along with the salt and stir. It starts to get really thick, so you’ll need some arm power.

- Pour the mixture into the baking tray and smooth over with a spatula. Leave to cool for around an hour, then place in the fridge until hard. Melt the dark chocolate and spread on top, then leave to cool in the fridge.

- Cut into squares, lay in your food jar and you’re done!

*You don’t technically need a candy thermometer, but honestly I made a few batches before getting one and it’s so much harder to get right!

This makes a massive portion, probably enough for up to two people so it would make a great gift for a couple, or even something to take along to a party or drinks. There won’t be any left, trust me!

The great thing about fudge is you can experiment with flavours. As well as salted caramel, I’ll be making a chilli vodka fudge which is such an unusual flavour! It’s so much nicer than store bought fudge, and the fact it’s homemade just makes it a lot nicer as a present.

Fudge 2 edit

Thanks for reading! If you fancy reading any more of my recipes, or just reading my general posts don’t forget to check my out on my blog, twitter and Instagram.

Merry Christmas!

Howdy lovlies,

Hope you’re all well?

Today I’m talking all about Britney Spears new hair care range at Lidl!  I always find it really interesting when celebrity endorsed products come out, as I’m intrigued by what the quality will be like! Also, Britney is a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine, so it definitely piqued my interest even more.

So I’ve been trying the Britney Spears Hairdryer* and the Straighteners* recently on my frizzy barnet, so here’s what I thought of them!

 

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For me having long hair is a PAIN to say the least, especially when drying, so I was really keen to give this a go. My poor hair dryer was on its last legs and I’d got so used to having a broken naff one, that having this hair dryer was like a dream!

The hair dryer has 3 different heat levels, and 2 different fan speeds, which is perfect if you want to set your hair style. I’m not quite that fancy, I’m a tip my head upside down and blow dry kind of girl! However, a massive bonus is that is has the Ion Technology in it which my last hairdryer didn’t have, and I can definitely notice a difference.

It comes with two different heads, a narrow nozzle, and a volume diffuser which is great for styling and also comes with automatic overheat protection (which was another thing my last hairdryer didn’t have!).

I’m always a bit cynical of what celebrity endorsed products will be like, but I’m really happy with the quality of this, and it’s only £9.99 which I think is a bargain. This is definitely a must for someone looking for a new hairdryer without breaking the bank, or if there’s someone you know (or you!) who is a Britney lover. Perfect for Christmas!

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I also tried out the straighteners from the range! First impressions is that they were smaller than I was expecting (I think I was picturing full size, not mini!), but would be super handy for your fringe, or if you need them for travelling! I don’t tend to straighten my hair a lot as it’s naturally quite straight, but I’ve been using them to get rid of some of the frizz from my hair. These are only £6.99 which is also a bargain!

Do bare in mind though that I’ve only used these for a short ish amount of time, so can’t comment on the longevity of them quality wise, but they do all come with a 3 year guarantee which is a bonus!

However, if you want to get anything from this range, you need to get in quick as I don’t think they’re available for long! There’s also loads of other products in the range, like a multi tool styler, hair brushes, curlers and even make up brushes.

Hair Dryer £9.99

Mini Straighteners £6.99

 

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Hello to Beth’s darling readers!

 

It’s Suzy here from Eeep I’m a Blogger, guesting for beautiful Beth as part of her Festive Blog Take Over series. Let me tell you, I am SO excited to be writing about Christmas – any excuse and I’m there.

 

I’m not sure I’ll ever grow up when it comes to Christmas. Every year as December rolls around, I regress to childhood and all I want to do with my days is cover things in tinsel, eat chocolate and dance around to Christmas songs. I mean, can you imagine how unproductive that makes me at work?!

 

After spending the build up to last year’s Christmas on bed rest after surgery, I am absolutely making up for it with a vengeance this year. I’ve been ready to take on all things festive since probably the middle of November. It’s a time of year that fills me with happiness and warmth, so I thought I’d do a little list of five of my favourite things about Christmas.

 

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Howdy lovlies,

I hope you’re all well?

Today I’m talking all about a new tanning product I’ve tried recently. Here on Beauty In Beta, I’ve reviewed a few different fake tans before, but I’ve always found that I’ve liked the colour, but it was a lot of effort for a lazy person like me. Having to fake tan, making all the mess, then sleeping in it (potentially getting it everywhere), and then having to wash it off in the morning. Definitely something that I would only do on a special occasion, but fake tan isn’t something that I’d like to do on a regular basis.

So when Cocoa Brown got in touch to see if I’d like to try their 1 hour tan I wasn’t sure. But when I was introduced to the Gradual Tanner*, which is a moisturiser with a hint of colour, I thought it sounded perfect for me as it’s minimal effort with more of a subtle colour.

 

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