Wednesday, 19 July 2017

NEW! | Garnier SkinActive Face Mask Sachets

A few weeks back now, I noticed a selection of Garnier SkinActive Face Mask sachets on one of those displays that Primark put in their queues, presumably to draw you in when you've already spent too much money and are waiting for an indeterminate but lengthy period to pay and leave... Obviously, me being me, I picked up one of each mask on offer and into my basket they went! There were three varieties available in my local Primark, but I believe there are a couple more out there which I've yet to track down...
Garnier SkinActive Mask Sachets
Garnier SkinActive Matcha + Kaolin Mask (£1.50/8ml) | "A new generation of face mask combining Matcha Tea and Kaolin Clay in a creamy-clay texture that purifies for refreshed, mattified and cleaned skin. Immediately: Impurities are removed, skin appears mattified. Long-lasting effectiveness: Skin appears purified as if rebalanced." Now I've only used this once so can't really comment on the long-term effects, but I'd agree that this mask mattified my skin and it did seem to draw out impurities. The creamy texture felt pleasant on my skin and I didn't find it drying, as clay masks can sometimes be.
Garnier SkinActive Juicy Mask (£1.50/8ml) | "A new generation of face mask combining Lemon Extract and smoothing Glycolic Acid in a jelly texture that illuminates for smooth, radiant skin with a healthy glow. Immediately: skin looks more refined, luminous, with a healthy glow. Long-lasting effectiveness: Skin tone appears more radiant, smoother and softer." I found that the one sachet was actually enough for two applications with this mask, but unfortunately I didn't really notice any of the benefits it offered; my skin just didn't really seem any different, either time.
Garnier SkinActive Aqua Mask (£1.50/8ml) | "A new generation of face mask combining Pomegranate and Glycerin in a fresh jelly texture. It hydrates to quench skin's thirst and it rehydrates skin in just 10 minutes, leaving it re-plumped and silky-smooth. Immediately: Skin looks bouncy, fresher. Long-lasting effectiveness: Skin feels hydrated, suppler and soft." This mask was probably my favourite of the three - it worked exactly as it claimed, leaving my skin looking and feeling super-well hydrated and really plumped and soft. The effects maybe only lasted a day or so, but I'd be interested to see if they last any longer with regular use.

Overall, for me, there are definitely some hits (the Aqua Mask) and some misses (the Juicy Mask) in this range, as well as some I'm just not bothered about (the Matcha + Kaolin Mask), but I'm still keen to try the other variants in the SkinActive range. I do think that single-use sachets like this are a fab way of trying something new without the commitment of a full tube of product, and they're perfect for travelling - though it would be nice, I think, to have the option of buying a tube if you like one - the masks are a little cheaper at Primark (£1 when I bought mine about six weeks ago) but still expensive for how much product you get.

Have you tried any of the SkinActive masks? Which is your favourite?

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Friday, 14 July 2017

What Have I Been Reading?

One of the goals I set myself for 2017 was to read twelve books, and amazingly enough I'm actually on target with that, having just read my seventh book of the year - don't forget to have a peek at how I'm getting on with the rest of my goals! I've been sharing what I've been reading here on my blog, so let's have a look at my latest reads...
Mini Reviews - The Cursed Child, Library of Souls, Always With Love
Recent Reads
Library of Souls | Ransom Riggs | ★★★★★
I loooove the first two books in this series and the third was no exception; I find Riggs' writing style really easy to read and his stories are total page-turners! I loved the premise of Library of Souls and thought it was really well executed, too, with twists that I didn't see coming and a whole host of interesting characters being introduced along the way. I really hope there's more to come from this series.
Always With Love | Giovanna Fletcher | ★★★☆☆
Fair disclosure; I haven't read the rest of the Billy and Me series, so I may be losing something there, but I didn't feel like I was missing much when reading this to be honest - all the characters and storylines were fairly well-introduced and there wasn't anything that I struggled to keep up with. Overall this wasn't a bad book - light and fluffy and easy to read, but not really my cup of tea.
Harry Potter & The Cursed Child (Script) | J. K. Rowling | ★★★★★
I devoured this in three hours this week - I think the script format makes for much quicker reading than a novel of the same size would be! I'm now totally unsure whether I'm emotionally stable enough to go and see the stage production, I think I'd be in pieces - I did really love the story, though, and found it so interesting to see what life is like for Harry, thirty years down the line.
What Have I Been Reading
All in all, I think I've been choosing pretty well in terms of enjoying the books I'm reading! I'm definitely going for quality over quantity here... And I'm now making my way through Dark Places by Gillian Flynn which I'm loving, too! You can check out the other books I've read so far this year here and here, if you're interested - I'd love to hear any recommendations of books to add to my reading list - what have you been reading lately? Have you read any of these?

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Monday, 10 July 2017

Sales Buys From The Body Shop

I was in town with my Mum at the end of last week and just so happened to notice that The Body Shop had a little sale on... Now I was all out of body butters and who can say no to a half-price sale!? After a good few minutes spent sniffing various pots and jars, I stocked up on some old favourites and also, on the recommendation of the lovely lady behind the counter, got myself something new to try!
What Did I Buy In The Body Shop's Sale
The body butters I went for were Blueberry, Vineyard Peach and Raspberry, all reduced from £15 to just £7.50 for the 200ml jars - what a bargain! I also picked up a Blueberry Body Scrub Gelée which was £6.50 down from £13 (although it's showing at £7.50 online - that said, mine is a 200ml jar and the ones online seem to be 250ml).
The Body Shop's body butters are some of my absolute favourites for adding plenty of moisturisation to my dry, eczema-prone legs, without feeling heavy, sticky or greasy. This little lot should last me a while! The Scrub Gelée, meanwhile, looks like blueberry jam and smells like bakewell tarts, so suffice to say I'm pretty excited to give it a try...
Body Shop Sale Haul
It turns out that you can take an extra 40% off the sale prices online with the code 14673, making all my purchases an absolute bargain at just £4.50 each!! I'm definitely not considering buying a few more online to make the most of this knowledge... You can find all the sale items here, go wild! You can thank me later... What are your favourite products from The Body Shop? Is there anything you'll be treating yourself to with the discount code?

[Post contains affiliate links.]

Thursday, 6 July 2017

2017 Hopes & Goals | Checking In

Back in January, I set myself some goals for 2017; now that we're halfway through the year, it seemed like a good time to check in with how they're going. I always find that keeping check of my goals and keeping myself accountable is one of the key ways of making sure I achieve as many of them as possible (I actually did a post about things that stop people achieving their goals, and how to overcome them! *shameless plug*) - "I just forgot about it" is such a rubbish reason for not achieving something that was important to me!
Checking in with 2017 Goals
01. Read 12 new books. I've just read my seventh book of the year so I'm actually on track with this one - a good start! You can check out a few of my reads so far this year here, and I'll be posting about the most recent books I've finished soon.
02. Move out. I'm still living with my parents and whilst I'd originally planned to move out before starting back at uni in September, now I've had a bit more time to think about it, I've decided I'm going to keep living at home for a few more months so that I can save up some cash - I'll be getting a pay rise, so a few months of living at home will allow me to save quite a bit of money, quite quickly. I'm not entirely happy about this but logically, I know it's sensible, and I'm probably going to need to buy a new car in the not-too-distant future, so I'm just going to have to lump it. I'm still intending to move out early next year!
03. Save money. I've actually just got a standing order each month to my savings account which makes this a very easy goal to keep up with! It's very satisfying, though, seeing that number creep up each month - it's not a huge amount but it's certainly a good start.
04. Learn to use my new camera. I still feel like I'm mostly working on trial and error to be honest; I've not had a proper chance to sit down and go through all the settings, figuring out how they work. Maybe this is something I can do in August whilst I'm off work!
2017 Goals
05. Get away. We've just booked a few days in Vienna in August which I am incredibly excited about; if anyone has any suggestions or recommendations of things to do/see there, I'd love to hear them! I'm so excited to tick this goal off as it's been literally six years since I had a proper holiday - as in more than a weekend away. I can't wait!!
06. Take better care of myself. This is a funny one and I feel like it's going to be a long journey, but I'm on the way, so that's a good start! I've got much better at saying no when I need to and at eating well (mostly - I still have a ridiculous sweet tooth and am entirely hopeless at moderation!), and I'm probably the fittest I've ever been thanks to going to the gym four times a week, swimming twice a week, and running and cycling occasionally as well. I'm going to say I'm on track with this one.
07. Run Total Warrior inside 90 minutes. Having been plagued on and off with shin splints over the last 12 months or so, I'm actually not sure whether I'm going to manage this or not this year - but if not, I'll carry it forward to next years, as it's still something I'd love to achieve!
08. Hit 5000 Twitter followers. I feel like I'm well on my way with this one; I'm approaching 4500, having started the year on just over 4000, so I'm a little bit behind target but not a huge amount, and to be honest I've not been hugely active on Twitter so I'm not surprised. Hopefully the second half of the year will be a little busier for me and I'll meet this goal!
2017 Goals Checking In
09. Hit 2000 Instagram followers. I honestly don't think this is going to happen - I've gained less than 100 followers so far in 2017 and have just been finding growth so difficult. I'm not worrying about it though, it's only social media at the end of the day! I really feel like the new algorithm destroyed Instagram for so many people - it's so difficult now to even see recent posts in my feed, they all seem to be at least a week old!
10. See more live music. I actually don't think I've seen any live music yet in 2017 which is a real shame and I'm quite disappointed in myself. I need to have a look at who's playing locally in the near future and get something arranged!!
Checking in 2017 Goals
I also wrote about a few things I was hoping 2017 would bring: "I really, really hope I get a place on a training course to work towards becoming a Clinical Psychologist this year; it's my first application so statistically, my chances aren't great (it takes an average of three applications...) but even so, I feel I'm ready and I'm really excited at the prospect of starting training, so I'd love to be on a course come September. Either way, I hope I'm able to keep doing a job I love and keep working towards the career I want. I hope to figure myself out mentally/emotionally a bit more - I've really struggled with mood and motivation towards the end of 2016 and I'm really not sure why. I hope to be able to get a bit more of a handle on that, and be happier and healthier in 2017."

I'd say I'm doing okay with these - I was offered a place on training which I'll be starting in September (hooray!) and I feel like I've been a lot more mentally/emotionally okay since my last relationship ended earlier in the year - I don't think I'd realised what a drain it had become on me. I've also taken a step back from blogging and have been putting far less pressure on myself, which has helped massively!

Did you set yourself any goals for 2017? Have you checked in with them to take stock of how you're getting on? I'd love to hear about your progress and successes!


Monday, 3 July 2017

Hello July!

Well, June was a very quiet month here on The Indigo Hours, and I haven't got off to much better of a start in July, have I?! I'm already a day late with this post, ha!
July is my last month in my current job, having been there almost a year now - my contract finishes at the end of the month anyway, and I'm starting my doctorate course at the beginning of September... So I have a feeling July could be quite a busy month, with trying to get all the loose ends tied off.
Hello July
Read at least one book. I need to finish at least one book in July to keep on track with my goal of 12 books this year - I've not even got one on the go at the moment so I need to have a little look at my To Be Read heap and choose a good one!
Complete this Blogilates 30-Day Waist Trainer Challenge. I really enjoyed doing the Blogilates 30-Day Abs Challenge last month and wanted to complete another one in July; this one promises to help you gain a stronger, slimmer waist, which I am all for - I've definitely seen results from the Abs challenge, so I'm excited to see what this one can do for me. Again, I'm expecting it to be quite hard work, but hopefully I'll manage to complete the 30 days!
See friends at least twice. Standard monthly goal but I need to include it so that I actually make the effort to see my friends, rather than just coming home from work every evening and hiding in my bed like the antisocial individual that I am.
Complete at least one open water swim. I did my first open water swim in about three years last month and loved it, so I'm determined to fit in as many as I can this summer - I have a wetsuit sat gathering dust so I really need to make the effort to take it out more and get a few swims in whilst the weather is good.
Curb my sweet tooth. I've discovered that "cutting back" on sweet stuff doesn't work for me - I can't do moderation, I find it so much easier to just know that I can't have something. I've just booked a holiday for August so I'd like to lose a little bit of the flab I'm carrying round my middle by then - and hopefully, this paired with the Blogilates challenge will see me right! We're going for a week in Vienna so it won't be a bikini kind of holiday but even so, it's good to have a date to work for and a nice reward for working hard.

I don't think I've got anything majorly exciting planned for July just yet - all that springs to mind is a trip to the dentist - thrilling I know! Have you got anything nice planned this month? Are you setting yourself any goals?

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