Friday, 26 May 2017

Sea Life, London (Review) ๐Ÿ’™

After visiting Paris myself in the summer, I was super excited to explore the UK equivalent in London. Straight to the point, I was disappointed. 
The whole experience was incredibly disappointing and I will not be going back.

Getting into the aquarium was a rough experience. There was huge crowds outside with people pushing and shoving everyone. It was actually really unsafe and hazardous. At the bottom of the steps was a man in a fluorescent jacket directing people with tickets up, while the women at the bottom was telling people to go back down.

I booked a ticket online with an arrival time, we got there with perfect timing. While I waited patiently, albeit somewhat distressed, others were arguing with a seemingly unknowledgeable attendee. They had been waiting for an hour to get in, despite having timed entry, so I could understand their utter despair. Mainly I think it was the lack of communication between the public and even within the staff themselves, that was the biggest disappointment.
Once we finally got in, they didn't have the ticket machine so once again we were made to wait and queue for even longer. When they came back, the rush of people going in meant that there was very little organisation and I even got split up from my partner for a brief period of time.

The aquariums themselves were really well kept and there was a beautiful array or many different fish.

Unfortunately, it appeared at least two exhibitions were closed so that was a massive disappointment, especially as they were extremely big ones. I personally, didn't think that the prices were reduced but I have been told through twitter that they were. If this is the case, it definitely wasn't worth the price that I paid for it.
Also, the main tank which had all the sharks was completely overused. While it was interesting to see them, seeing it from 5+ different vantage points to me, felt like a cheap way to make it seem as though there was more to see.
Having said that, my child really enjoyed the whole experience. He loves sensory type activities and the whole experience was very calming to him. The lights make it a really great sensory experience and the soft and relaxing music really helps. I think the pace of the animals really helps children all around.
One of the biggest and easily fixable negative I had was that although their were signs above all the tanks, given how dark it was, there was no way to read. I don't wear nor need glasses but with the diminished light, there was no way to read. There either needs to be lit up signs or a small spotlight above each one. Admittedly, the low level lighting adds to the experience but it seems like a massive waste of money and time to have informative and interesting signs that can't be appreciated.
I guess it wasn't helped by the fact it was so overpopulated in their that you had very little time to read with many distraction. Oppositely, in Paris, I was one of only three people in the whole aquarium. If you want to visit an Aquarium, I would thoroughly recommend Paris because they even had sit down viewing points that were comfortable and enjoyable.
Overall, it was extremely crowded, very poorly organised and not worth the money. Having said that, my child thoroughly enjoyed himself and it was interesting to see a lot of the different species.

Ps. How crazy close did this shark get?! Luckily I found protection!

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

"It's All In The Details" May Birchbox: Unboxing and Review ⚪

I don't usually like the Birchbox drawer boxes but this month's design was too beautiful to refuse. The box was in a stunning white marble with rose gold details.

Plus the colour scheme went perfectly with my little #makeaflatahome feature in my bedroom!

Onto the products...

This month's selectable product was between two eyeshadows. Vanilla Frosting or Fifty Shades. Clearly inspired by the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise.
Marsk Mineral Eyeshadow - Vanilla Frosting - £14.49
 At first I used this as a full colour eye shadow but it's far too pigmented. However, this is gorgeous as a brow bone highlighter and inner corner. I will be using this all the time as I have almost finished my Naked Pallette one that I use all the time. This is so highly pigmented, I feel like it will last forever. It's shimmey, gorgeous and long lasting.
Spectrum Collections Marbleous Tulip Eye Contour Brush - £4.99
I've been a big fan of the Spectrum brushes since I was first introduced to them. They are now the only brushes I use on my eyes. They are so pretty, cheap and durable. Simply perfect!
Kueshi Shine & Volume Mask - £10.99
 I love hair masks as I've said before but this one just doesn't do anything for me. I felt no difference except it took a long time to wash out.
Dr. Brandt Pores No More® Cleanser - £30.00
I have terrible acne, especially at the moment while revising and stressing about exams so I was excited when I first saw this. Personally, I didn't see much difference but the product sample size was tiny and only last 3 days which was a big shame.
Doucce Punk Volumizer Mascara - £18.00
I don't wear mascara and I have so many samples but I've never found the one. However, when I put this on, my flatmate noticed a massive difference and said it looked really pretty. So it's a thumbs up from me!

Overall, I loved this month's products! They were all selected really well for me. I am defintely going to use them all! Plus, the eyeshadow is so pretty and pigmented. LOVE!

Click to see the March and April reviews. If you would like to get your own Birchbox click here to be taken straight through to the discounted offer - 50% off. I'm sure you will love it as much as me!

I also did a unboxing on my YouTube channel so be sure to go check that out! :)

Monday, 22 May 2017

WHY VOTE?! #NotThe33

So this week's Monday post is a little different but it's also one of the most important posts I will be writing this year so listen up. This may not necessarily apply to everyone immediately but it is completely relatable to so many, or one day soon.
Today is the last day to sign up for the General Elections, here in the UK. This post is part of a social campaign to raise awareness of how important it is to vote. Our country will be going to the polls on June 8th. The last day you can register to vote is May 22nd. Today!

It is so incredibly important to vote and I cannot stress that enough which is why I have teamed up with a group of other lovely bloggers to help raise awareness and promote voting.

I am not writing a post telling you who to vote for. In my opinion, I am happy to share my voting preferences but it is a completely individual and private discussion that should be personally dealt with.

So why should you vote?

At the last General Election in 2015, the turnout was 66.1%. This figure includes spoiled ballot papers. That means that 33.9% did not vote. It also means that the number of people who did not vote outnumbered the votes tallied by any one individual party.

Too many people think that voting isn't important. Too many people think that their vote can't make a difference. Yet these figures show how votes DO make a difference. If all those who think it doesn't make a difference actually voted, then a difference could by made.

In the Local Elections 2 weeks ago, a seat in South Blyth was awarded by drawing straws after there was a tie between the two candidates...the turnout was just 26.6%.

This campaign is being tagged with the hashtag #NotThe33. Be sure to share your own views on Twitter and Instagram and if you tag me, I will try to share as many as possible!

A big thank you to Helen for allowing me to be a part of this campaign. Be sure to see her Twitter (@Helsieboo) for all things related to the project.

Ps. At the time of this post going live, I will probably be sunbathing in the sunny sun of Cape Verde and enjoying myself and relaxing but I hope you will share this post and introduce the idea to so many of your peers, friends and family of all ages should be actively involved in this political event.

So what is important to remember is that today is the very last day to sign up to vote in the UK General Election. Go go GO!

Friday, 19 May 2017

Shrek's Adventure, London (Review) ๐Ÿ’š

A few weeks ago, I headed to Shrek's Adventure with a charity I volunteer for. I've heard great things about it so I thought it would be a perfect place to take my child.
We went in smoothly and headed inside. I had thought that once inside, it was be a fun and relaxed atmosphere but there was queue after queue and everything was really secretive and private. You couldn't really take pictures are record anywhere, bar the very last part.

It felt so magical and exciting to be inside Shrek's world and I loved seeing all the images and pictures.

It was an interesting idea and while fun, I do think the whole path and journey was a little lacklustre. I was intrigued to see how they made it interactive and included so many different characters but it definitely fell through for me. It was all about going on a journey to the castle but Rumple's evil witches make it crash and you have to go on an adventure to find Shrek to help save everyone.

It started with the creepiest man with the strangest accent; I definitely wasn't the only one who was a little gobsmacked. A number of other parents discussed similar feeling to my own. It then went through a series of locations from different characters perspectives gathering special things to help find him.
They had a lot of special effects and despite what it looks like on the outside, they've somehow created this detailed environment with multiple locations built in. It's clear that they have put time and resources into making this as realistic as possible though, especially with the little details, like witches blood on one side of the bus (the side you get off of!).
I would just point out that our child, albeit on the autistic spectrum, was a little frightened of some of the special effects. I'm not sure I'd want to take really young kids. Plus, a lot of the conversations are more intellectually stimulating and unfortunately I doubt they would be able to understand the key details needed to explore the situation.

Overall, I had heard great things about the newest London attraction but I feel it could be done much better. Having said that, it did feel like I was part of the movie which was magical in it's own way.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

"Birchbox x Boden" April Birchbox: Unboxing and Review ๐Ÿ’™

This month's Birchbox is a little later because I somehow got unsubscribed but I ended up getting the gorgeous April birchbox for half price so it worked out well.

This month was a Birchbox collaboration with Boden, a clothing company, and together they came up with this stunning floral themed box. But onto the products...I don't know what happened to my pictures but the following with white backgrounds are directly from the birchbox website.

Baรฏja Paris Crรจme Moana in Fleur de Tiarรจ - £15.90
 I can't get over how pretty the packaging for this product is! It's just stunning. I love the smell but I can see it wouldn't be for everyone and it blends in nicely.
ModelCo® Eye Define Crayon Liner - £11.00
 I'm not a massive makeup fine so eye liner will never be a winner with me but having got a felt tip like Model Co eye liner from Birchbox before, I defintely prefer this one. It goes on much smoother and easier. Plus, it doesn't look bad if you make mistakes because you can just blend it out instead.
Luseta Beauty Keratin Smooth Conditioner - £19.00
 I've been loving any sort of hair mask recently so this is perfect! I received a small sample so can't really give a full review but in my opinion this is very expensive. I recently did a full review on the John Frieda collection and loved that just as much so go with that!
Polaar IcePure Gentle Scrub with Arctic Cotton - £23.50
 I defintely have sensitive skin so I am so glad I can use this gentle scrub without irritating it! Personally, I think the whole brand is very pricey but I do enjoy the frequent samples through Birchbox.
Manna Kadar Cosmetics Radiance Split Pan Bronzer And Highlighter Duo - £17.00
This was the selectable product and I am so glad! the highlighter is perfect for everyday looks as it's not shimmery and while the bronzer is a little dark for me it blends in well...after a bit of persuasion.

Overall, I really liked the products and despite getting the eye liner, it was a good selection with highly versatile products.

Click to see the March Birchbox review. If you would like to get your own Birchbox click here to be taken straight through to the discounted offer. I'm sure you will love it as much as me!

I also did a unboxing on my YouTube channel so be sure to go check that out! :)