.Another Mal Weekend | Malmaison Liverpool. 

It seems at the moment we’re doing a tour of the Malmaisons in England but if they do insist on emailing me incredibly tempting offers, how can I say no?! This time it’s the turn of Liverpool and their gorgeous hotel on the docks. The aim of our weekend this time was simply pure relaxation. We didn’t have anything planned (apart form eating & drinking!) so we could really enjoy our time away together and it was just what we both needed.

We arrived on the Friday and wandered into the beautiful reception area of the Mal. Parking is right next door and only £11 for 24 hours which is fantastic and means there’s no lugging cases for miles to get to the hotel. We got stuck in a bit of traffic and so were running late but it wasn’t an issue for the Mal who pushed our dinner reservation back an hour so we could enjoy getting ready at a nice relaxed pace. All checked in we headed to our room which was upgraded for free to a superior double - a lovely surprise. The view was beautiful looking out over the docks with a giant bed, painfully cool and sultry Malmaison décor and an amazing bathroom! Past the giant butler sink accompanied by the usual Mal bathroom goodies (their shower gel smells so yummy) you walked right into a grey tiled shower room with monsoon shower at one end and toilet at the other! As I only had my fixed lens on it was a little snug to photograph but it was simply lovely, and it was only when I walked out of the shower that I noticed the giant bathtub hidden behind the open door! Incredibly luxurious and curved….perfect for two! 

Because we’d pushed our dinner back an hour we were a little peckish and decided to order room service to keep us going! We phoned down for some olives and rustic bread with our bubbly which arrived within about 5 minutes and we devoured on the bed while watching a bit of telly. The olives were incredible and the bread came with garlic butter, oils and the most delicious humus I’ve ever eaten – well worth the £3 tray charge to enjoy whilst dolling up. This Mal room actually had a mirror suitable for makeup with a nearby light so I was well away and didn’t have to sit on the floor or blindly poke at my face with eyeliner in the sultry but sometimes impractical lighting, well done Liverpool! Dressed for the town (or rather the brasserie) we headed down for dinner, taking in the cool interiors as we went which included a giant yellow submarine suspended in the corridors!

Dinner was delectable. In with our offer we had three courses from the prix fixe menu or a £20 allowance from the a la carte and although the set menu looked amazing we both fancied fish so turned to the a la carte which really did have something for everyone. To start I tried the Goats Cheese, Pear and Apple Salad with Walnut and Raspberry dressing and it was so fresh and satisfying at the same time – it also took a lot of eating without being too filling, the perfect starter for me. The boy went for black pudding, chorizo and duck egg which also looked yummy albeit a little small next to my mega cheesy salad! For main I really fancied salmon so I tried one of the specials which was Pan Fried with Roast New Potatoes and Chorizo which was perfect, although when Joe’s Seared Tuna Steak with Asian Greens turned up I have to admit I was a little jealous! Both were incredibly yummy however and left a little room to share a dessert, Crème Brulee which was one of the nicest I’ve tried. The service in the Brasserie that night was a little slow but we had a bottle of Mercier Brut Champagne to keep us occupied while we were waiting between courses and as we had nowhere else to go it wasn’t really an issue at all. After our Irish Coffees that seem to be a dinner date essential for us now we headed back to the room for a few more drinks from the mini bar! 

We have a track record of booking breakfast when we stop away but being a little too tired to get up, dressed and go downstairs so we usually sleep in and miss all the fun! So we made an executive decision this time to have our pre-ordered breakfasts in the room continental style! After popping our choices on the room’s door handle the night before our breakfasts arrived with a gentle knock right  on 10:30am as requested. The trays were left on the floor outside so you don’t even have to put your shirt on to answer the door – ultimate lazy morning! Our breakfasts arrived in two individual hampers with a plethora of pastries, yoghurt with berries and granola, cereal, preserves, freshly squeezed orange juice and a fresh fruit salad. Tea and coffee is always provided in the rooms with a great selection and with your continental you can request fresh milk which was a nice touch for the boy however they’d run out of soy milk which meant I couldn’t have me cereal - sad times! But in the end it didn’t matter as I found an Earl Grey tea and was so stuffed after my yoghurt, granola, croissant and fruit I couldn’t manage a bowl of cereal anyway! We leisurely got dressed and checked out at 12pm before dumping our cases in the car and taking a lovely stroll around the docks and the city centre in the sunshine which is only 5 minutes’ walk away. 

Our stay at the Liverpool Mal was absolutely wonderful and just what the doctor ordered. I wouldn’t hesitate to stop here again and I’d recommend it for anyone looking for a bit of luxury close to the city centre where they can relax and keep themselves to themselves or head out for a night on the tiles in style. 

Read about our other Malmaison stays in Manchester (both the Hotel & Food) and Birmingham!

Have you stopped in a Malmaison hotel before? Which has been your favourite? 

Tweet me @xameliax and let me know! #liverpoolmal

xax

Thursday, April 10, 2014 — 4 notes

.On The Docks | French Connection Military Coat. 

I’ve been after a new coat for a while after wearing my Zara studded leather jacket to absolute death, so when I spotted this French Connection Military Coat* in the sale I knew it had to be mine. I’m a huge fan of the vintage pea coat look and have been looking for something similar for such a long time and although we are making our way into the Spring season I’ve been rocking this bad boy every day because well, ya know, England is still bloody cold! It’s so important to own a good quality coat, one that will see you through the years and this is certainly one of those. Excellent quality wool and really well made with a truly classic style.

.Outfit Details.

Coat*French Connection

Scarf* - Pour Madame

JeansPrimark

BagTopshop (recycled)

Sunglasses* - Moathouse Eyewear

Heeled Dessert Boots* - TOMS 

I’m absolutely loving the new French Collection ranges and am eagerly keeping my eye out for their mid-season sale!

Find this coat and other FC bargains HERE for just £70 down from £140! 

What’s been your favourite style of coat this Autumn/Winter? What are you most looking forward to with the new season styles? 

Tweet me @xameliax #FCcoat

xax

(Source: xameliax.com)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 — 3 notes
.Oil Up That Oily Skin | 100% Natural Jojoba Oil. 
This title may sound like the world’s biggest contradiction but it’s probably closer to the world biggest myth about moisture and oily skin. Having acne prone, blemish prone, everything prone problem skin I’ve tried a lot of skincare products in my time and it was a long while before I realised the moisturising properly and using the right oils could actually help regulate my skin rather than breaking it out. Quick science lesson, when your skin is dry it produces oil to compensate so if you dry out oily skin it produces even more – not good! 
My LUSH Ultrabland Balm is still a lifesaver when my skin is feeling a little on the dry side and I want to strip things back but recently I’ve been trying out a pure oil from The Jojoba Company* and loving it. The reason why Jojoba Oil is so good for those of us with acne is because it mimics the properties of sebum (the nasty stuff that causes our blemishes) and so similar to the oil principal it stops our skin producing more sebum to compensate. Personally I don’t like the smell, and that’s the only thing that puts me off, although doesn’t stop me from using it. It’s got a strange almost buttery herby smell but luckily it doesn’t linger too long and I pop it on before bed so I’m usually asleep before I get a chance to properly notice it! I put this on underneath my wrinkle cream (because i’m getting old, see review of that HERE) at night and it really helps give my skin a moisture boost. 
I’ve also noticed a big improvement in my skin since I started using this oil so it’s a real winner for me. I’d love for it to have more of an aromatherapy smell but as it’s a pure and natural oil we can’t really complain, especially when it works so well - two thumbs up for sure! 
You can find the Jojoba Company HERE or try out a bottle of their 100% pure Jojoba oil from Holland & Barratt HERE for just £ 12.99
Do you suffer from dry or acne prone skin? Do you use any face oils as treatment? Would you give Jojoba a go? 
Tweet me @xameliax with your best blemish fighting tips #jojobaoil
xax

.Oil Up That Oily Skin | 100% Natural Jojoba Oil. 

This title may sound like the world’s biggest contradiction but it’s probably closer to the world biggest myth about moisture and oily skin. Having acne prone, blemish prone, everything prone problem skin I’ve tried a lot of skincare products in my time and it was a long while before I realised the moisturising properly and using the right oils could actually help regulate my skin rather than breaking it out. Quick science lesson, when your skin is dry it produces oil to compensate so if you dry out oily skin it produces even more – not good! 

My LUSH Ultrabland Balm is still a lifesaver when my skin is feeling a little on the dry side and I want to strip things back but recently I’ve been trying out a pure oil from The Jojoba Company* and loving it. The reason why Jojoba Oil is so good for those of us with acne is because it mimics the properties of sebum (the nasty stuff that causes our blemishes) and so similar to the oil principal it stops our skin producing more sebum to compensate. Personally I don’t like the smell, and that’s the only thing that puts me off, although doesn’t stop me from using it. It’s got a strange almost buttery herby smell but luckily it doesn’t linger too long and I pop it on before bed so I’m usually asleep before I get a chance to properly notice it! I put this on underneath my wrinkle cream (because i’m getting old, see review of that HERE) at night and it really helps give my skin a moisture boost. 

I’ve also noticed a big improvement in my skin since I started using this oil so it’s a real winner for me. I’d love for it to have more of an aromatherapy smell but as it’s a pure and natural oil we can’t really complain, especially when it works so well - two thumbs up for sure! 

You can find the Jojoba Company HERE or try out a bottle of their 100% pure Jojoba oil from Holland & Barratt HERE for just £ 12.99

Do you suffer from dry or acne prone skin? Do you use any face oils as treatment? Would you give Jojoba a go? 

Tweet me @xameliax with your best blemish fighting tips #jojobaoil

xax

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 — 2 notes

.Nails To Make Ariel Jealous | Barry M Aquarium Collection. 

I’m going to be completely honest with you on this one, when the press release for this collection came out I didn’t think I’d like these polishes – sorry Bazza! I’m just not a fan of shimmery polishes (flashbacks from my 90’s youth!) and neither blue or green ever make it into my manicure routine, so that ruled out all but one of this collection at first. But in the name of science I got swatching, and guess what? My shimmer polish eyes have been re-opened because these polishes are beautiful! 

From Left to Right: Pacific*, Arabian*, Mermaid*, Treasure Chest*, Caspian*, Mediterranean*.

The warm tones of the aquarium collection won me over at first, because well, they’re just stunning. That fiery orange copper duo chrome and the silky pale duo gold look lovely on their own but with their partnering glitter they look amazing! With flakes of rose gold, yellow gold and silver this has got to be the prettiest glitter topcoat I own and I have to say that I’ve tried it with so many other polishes in my collection as a quick accent or glitter gradient since swatching here – I can’t get enough! It’s a little tricky to place because of the flake size but once you’ve got the hand of dabbing rather than painting you’ll be well away. Even the cool tones of this collection look lovely on especially with their glitter topcoat which for these is full of blue, green and gold flakes that really do look like a mermaid’s tail!

So if you’re into you shimmers and duo chrome polishes then these are going to be right up your street, but I’ll warn you, they all complement each other so perfectly there’s no way you’ll be able to walk out with just one! 

You can find the new Barry M Aquarium Collection on their website HERE for just £3.99 a bottle or from your local Boots & Superdrug stores! 

What do you think of this mystical new collection? Which side are you on, warm or cool? 

Tweet us @xameliax @BarryMCosmetics #aquarium an let us know your favourite shade!

xax

(Source: xameliax)

Monday, April 7, 2014 — 36 notes

.Weekend In Photos.

Last week I officially kick started my more intense exercise and diet regime again because I was feeling a little lethargic and as the nights are getting longer I thought it might be a good idea to start running! So I roped in my good friend Rob and we hit the pavements with the help of the Nike + app and a bit of encouragement from friends! Completing an hour of kickboxing after you’ve just run over 3 miles isn’t the easiest thing I’ve ever done but you’ve got to start somewhere and I’m sure my fitness levels will be back to how they were last year in no time! I also invested in a kick-ass new blender which means I’ve been thoroughly enjoying fruit smoothies every morning for breakfast and feeling great for it too, but more on that in a separate post I think!

Joe and I had a little mid-week date night and went to go watch Captain America which was really good! I love our little cinema dates, especially because we always get popcorn in a box and it’s super cute, and I’m really impressed with how comfy 3D glasses are these days! This weekend has been so lazy it’s unreal. I’ve been really struggling with my sleep this past week so I really needed to catch up on some Zzzz’s. Friday night we sat in with a stir fry and a gorgeous bottle of French White cuddling and catching up on all our TV and Saturday was spent sleeping and relaxing on the sofa watching Frozen for the first time (so amazing!) and drinking copious amounts of tea. Saturday evening we went round for dinner with Joe’s parents so I made my Caramelised Nut and Maple Syrup Sponge Puddings which were so yummy - I’ll have to pop the recipe up here for you some time. After some great food, chat and lots of wine we got cards out and I was completely trounced at a new game called ‘Sweaty Betty’ (what?!) - way to pick on the newbie, thanks guys!  

Yesterday we were on a mission, a holiday booking mission to be exact! We’ve been looking for a while now and have had our week booked off for about a month but just couldn’t decide on where to go! But today we made a decision and finally booked out all inclusive week in the sun! Our resort looks stunning and we both just can’t wait - nothing like a bit of sunshine to put a smile on your face, even if it is a few months away! The rest of the day was spent watching movies and eating naughties ready to get back to work tomorrow. A well needed weekend of relaxation for both of us, even if it has flown by as usual!

xax

(Source: xameliax.com)

Monday, April 7, 2014 — 1 note

.VLOG | Spa Reviews & Fancy Dress | xameliax.

A little vlog of my Moddershall Oaks Spa day and a Mexican fiesta party! It’s short, it’s a little bit silly but i love vlogging so i hope you enjoy!

Don’t forget to LIKE, SHARE & SUBSCRIBE!

xax

(Source: xameliax.com)

Saturday, April 5, 2014 — 1 note