Friday, 15 December 2017

Christmas gift guide 2017

You know what time it is!

I've put together some of the best gift sets I've seen on the market, as well as including some staple gift ideas such as these ugg slippers or a classic candle. Scroll through the lists below for more gifting inspiration. Keep updated as I'll be posting more holiday gifting ideas. Happy shopping!

Cashmere gloves // Laura Mercier set // Candle // Concealer // Charlotte Tilbury set // Cardholder // Lip gloss set // Dyson hair dryer // Ugg slippers 

Other amazing products I'd recommend is the Amazon Alexa for the tech lover and this pom-pom clutch for the jetsetter friend. If you're looking for a unique stocking filler, check out The Nut Kitchen for amazingly tasting sweet treats - I sampled their hazelnut spread I'd highly recommend if you're a fan of sweet spreadables. It makes a great festive stocking filler! 

Scroll through for more ideas:


Monday, 20 November 2017

Christmas gifts under £30

Tis the season for gifting...

And gifting can be hard and expensive. Especially when you're buying for friends and family who already have it all. There are some great gift sets on the market currently that I highly recommend taking advantage of it as you get more value for your money.

I've listed a lot of great present ideas that are under £30, suitable for a lot of people and age ranges. Hope you enjoy! A x


Saturday, 11 November 2017

Best beauty advent calendars 2017

Thinking of getting a beauty advent calendar this year?

For years, I've stood firm on my loyalty to the classic advent calendar, without paying too much attention to the beauty calendars. It was actually only until last year that beauty advent calendars made me realise the value associated with them - I was working at a magazine at the time, and was gifted one by Rituals that was fantastic. I used most of the products during December but the saved some of the mini products for travelling and they came in incredibly handy.

This year, there are some pretty insane advent calendars out, which make for the perfect gift and run-up to the festive period. I've included all the best ones I've seen, suitable for any budget from £20 to £200. It's the most wonderful time of the year, after all.

Follow me on social media for more beauty goodness and to see what I'm up to :) 

Monday, 6 November 2017

What to buy this month | November

It seems as though the impact of Christmas is set to arrive so much earlier this year. Brands and retailers have already brought out the first phase of their holiday packages and exclusive deals ahead of the prime shopping season. This month's shopping list includes key pieces that are great to take you through the warmer months, the latest beauty product I'm obsessed with and cosy additions to your autumnal wardrobe.

Enjoy x


Wednesday, 27 September 2017

New in beauty products

The latest beauty drops, ranging from the incredibly popular Fenty Beauty highlighter to a new stick foundation that's set to be game-changing.

Victoria Beckham Eye Foil, £28

After an extremely successful collaboration last year, Estee Lauder and Victoria Beckham are back with a new and bold collection inspired by VB's favourite cities.The eye foils are one of the newest products she's launched. The cream foil creates a metal shine for a vinyl-like finish and comes in a variety of shades.

YSL All Hours foundation, £33.50 and concealer, £22

YSL's latest foundation drop is the All Hours foundation, that supposedly lasts up to 24 hours. The foundation is full coverage, with a buildable texture and rich coverage that leaves a polished and even finish. It's set to be quite different to the cushion foundation (read my review here), with longer staying power and different consistency.

The All Hours foundation is waterproof, oil-free and has SPF20 - perfect for those looking for SPF within their foundation and a base that will cover. The All Hours foundation is accompanied by the new All Hours concealer, which implements the same formula and provides a medium to full coverage finish.

Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand, £29

After years of successful products, any new launches by Charlotte Tilbury are set to be a success. She recently launched her eye palette (shop it here), as well as her new beauty flash wand. The wand is in a rose gold highlighter and comes with a cushion application, which I personally love in products because it makes it super easy to blend. No doubt the product is going to a hit!

Nars Velvet Matte Foundation Stick, £30

The latest beauty launch by Nars is their matte foundation stick that's perfect for on the go coverage and touch ups. The foundation has a soft-matte finish that is blendable and easily buildable for coverage. Usually stick foundations are on the heavier side when it comes to coverage so it's great to see a product that lets you layer the product before you're completely caked in it. Out now and retails for £30.

Fenty Beauty highlighter, £26

I mean, Fenty Beauty is the beauty brand that everyone has been talking about for the past few weeks. Since the launch of the brand at Harvey Nichols (where Rihanna herself turned up), people have been going crazy for the brand and the quality of the products. The highlighters provide long-wear cream powder and can be worn both during the day time and then transitioned into evening. This has got to be my next beauty purchase! Available exclusively at Harvey Nichols in the UK, shop it here.

Are any of these products on your radar? I personally can't wait to try the Nars foundation stick as I'm a huge fan of their foundations (read my review of the Nars tinted moisturiser) and the VB eye foil -I think this is perfect for the party season.

All products are shop-able below! Hope you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Instagram (@alarabasul) for daily beauty updates! x


Sunday, 24 September 2017

What to buy this month | September

September is one of my favourite months of the year. It's the transition of when summer weather begins to tone down and turn into cooler evenings, autumn leaves begin to cover the pavements and pumpkin spiced latte drinks come into season.

There are a couple of new products I'm loving this month that are really worth mentioning to you. I'm loving this new super soft and cosy jumper from Topshop, it's perfect for cosy nights in and casual days. I've switched up a couple of my skincare products lately and I've been testing out the Skinfix Foaming Oil Cleanser, it's amazing for combination skin like mine. It's gentle on the skin and doesn't feel like the cleanser is stripping your skin of oils - instead, it's quite the opposite, my skin feels refreshed and soft after each cleanse. Highly recommend.

Another beauty product worth mentioning is the Alpha-H Liquid Gold. I've only been using this for a few days now but it's quickly made it to my favourites. It's an overnight treatment that stimulates the skincare cells and helps soften your skin and get rid of the flakey cells to resurface the skin. It's truly amazing - I definitely recommend trying it out.

One last thing- you may also be thinking that the image I've used for this month's round-up is quite unusual. We're actually in the process of starting works to our flat and I will be sharing the whole experience on my Instagram (see it here and I'll be blogging about it too if you're into interiors and renovations. 

All monthly favourites are listed below! Hope you enjoy it, and happy Sunday x


Sunday, 20 August 2017

Why you need Bobbi Brown's Hydrating Face Cream

When it comes to the warmer months I love trying out new skincare. I have combination skin, although it varies within seasons as sometimes my skin can feel really dry and other times it can be oiler than usual. Our skin is exposed to much more UV rays in the summer than usual, and this can dry out the skin and leave it looking dull and dry. 

The Bobbi Brown hydrating face cream is like a drink of water for your skin. It goes on really smooth, instantly hydrates the skin to the point where you can see an instant change. The moisturiser contains algae extract which has proven to smooth the skin and allows it to keep hydrated for longer.  The face cream also contains caffeine, which acts as an antioxidant and encourages the growth of new skin cells.

I’ve been using it for a few months now, and some of you saw that I was trying it out on my Instastories and messaged saying how much you loved it. If you’re looking for a new face cream to transition to the colder months  or just need a pick me up, I’d definitely recommend going to a Bobbi Brown counter and asking for a sample.

I personally love Bobbi Brown’s make up, there are certain products such as the shimmer brick in bronze and under eye corrector (I use shade natural) that I’ve used for years 5+ years (seriously still loyal to these products) so I knew I could trust the brand when it came to skincare. 

Bobbi Brown’s Hydrating Face Cream retails for £42, and if you buy it online at, you can get 15% off your first order. You can also shop my favourite BB products below. 

Have you tried any skincare products from Bobbi Brown? X


Saturday, 5 August 2017

What to buy in August

This months shopping list contains a new hair oil that I've been loving, the straw 'blogger bag' that keeps selling out and some great multitasking beauty products that should be on your summer beauty radar.


Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Review: Origins GinZing Energy-Boosting Treatment Lotion Mist


I’ve always been a fan of Origins skincare. My first ever eye-cream that I purchased from the brand was the Origins Ginzing Refreshing Eye Cream, a creamy and lightweight cream that worked wonders after long nights back in my university days. Throughout the years, I’ve continued to use a variety of their products, tried different ranges, and my favourite is still the Ginzing collection (and of course their face masks, which literally work for every skin type and make the perfect travel companion.)

When I saw that Origins had launched a new Ginzing range I was extremely excited to try it out. The product that stood out to me instantly was the Ginzing Lotion Mist, purely because I had never tried a mist from the brand and was already quite familiar with their moisturisers. 

The Origins lotion mist aims to instantly refresh the skin and leave it looking radiant and energetic. I first tried the mist in the morning before my skincare routine, so that I could see exactly the effect that it had. After a couple of sprays I noticed that it left my skin with a glowy but subtle sheen that looked as though I had just moisturised. I now personally love using this both in the mornings and throughout the day as it plumps up the skin and keeps it looking hydrated.

The mist has a citrus-esque smell which I don't mind at all and actually quite like, and it feels refreshing especially in the morning to wake up the skin. This would also be a great addition to your evening skin care routine.

The Origins lotion mist retails for £18, which I think is great value considering the range of ways it can be used and how useful it would be when travelling.

You can shop the product here.

For more of Origin's new range, scroll through the shopable images below. Hope you enjoyed this review! A x


Tuesday, 11 July 2017

City break essentials

When travelling for a city break it can be extremely hard to pack, especially if you're heading to a completely new destination. I've always been one to overpack - especially when it comes to make up, let's be honest, don't we all?! As I've discovered more products that I love and use on a daily basis, it's become a lot easier to filter through what to take. Gone are the days where I take new products away with me to try on holiday, because frankly, most of the time you'll wish you had your staple products there that you know and are familiar with. That being said, there are always the essential companions that I pack for every trip, such as a good pair of earphones, a good wash bag and travel case that always come in handy.

When it comes to beauty products, I have a few staples that I always have in my handbag and take around with me daily, so eliminating through products is easier. Outfits can be more difficult- but if you really want to nail packing for a city break, then put together all your outfits together beforehand so you know roughly what you'll be wearing on each day. Some of my city break essentials are below.

If you enjoyed this post, come and say hi! Instagram | Twitter 

Sunday, 18 June 2017

What to buy in June

Who's enjoying the beautiful weather in London? So happy that the summer months are finally among us! If you're off on holiday this month then you may be looking for new wardrobe essentials that will carry you through the warmer months, and there are so many brands and retailers that have amazing new pieces out that I've included as much as I can in this shopping list (there are lots on sale too) This post is longer than usual, but have a browse through and I hope you find it useful! Thanks for reading - A x


Tuesday, 23 May 2017

10 fragrances to get you ready for summer

There's been so many beautiful Spring/Summer fragrance launches over the past month that it was time to do a round up of some of the best perfumes around. My favourites include Flowerbomb's new version Bloom (smells even better than the original - yes, that's possible), Estee Lauder's Bronze Goddess which is a cult summer scent and a new release by Guerlain. Scroll through the list below and click to find out more about each perfume.

shown above:

Just like the original Flowerbomb but punchier, this fragrance is the perfect everyday scent for warmer days.

I first tested this fragrance whilst working on a beauty desk for a magazine last year, and ever since I've been recommending to anyone who's looking for the perfect summer-in-a-bottle scent.

Mon Guerlain is the new feminine fragrance in town. Inspired by Angelia Jolie, the fragrance is sweet yet strong and has notes of jasmine and sandalwood.

Peonia Nubile is a warm floral fragrance with notes of raspberry and top notes of peony.

Whilst not the most popular Jo Malone fragrance, this one is a perfect balance of calmness and sweetness which makes it perfect for cosy summer days.

Scent of a Dream was created by Charlotte Tilbury to change the energy frequency of those around you. This fragrance is definitely one of the strongest out of the bunch and one that lasts all day with only a spritz needed.

Estee Lauder are back with their iconic Bronze Goddess collection featuring the ultimate summer fragrance. This fragrance is summer epitomised and packed into a shimmery bottle.

Laura Mercier's Creme Brûlée is the perfect pick me up fragrance: with notes of caramel and vanilla bean the warm scent will quickly become your everyday go-to.

Tom Ford Costa Azzurra is perfect if you want to make a lasting impression as for me this is the scent that turns heads as you walk by.

You can rarely smell Molecule 01 on yourself as it works with your body and smells differently on everyone, and is said to be more about the effect it has on other people.

Monday, 8 May 2017

Review: Becca's under eye brightening corrector

If you read my February favourites post then you'll know that I've been a big fan of this product lately.


Wednesday, 3 May 2017

What To Buy in May

This months shopping list includes overstated earrings, blush and nude colours and lots of new beauty products to add to your collection in preparation for summer. Hope you enjoy x

Saturday, 29 April 2017

Exploring South London with Airbnb

A couple of weeks ago a very exciting e-mail landed in my inbox. Airbnb had reached out to me and asked whether I'd be interesting in trying out one of their newest features: The Airbnb experience. These are a way of exploring any city you're in with a truly authentic experience that you maybe wouldn't know about if you weren't using the service. They vary from trying out a new restaurant, visiting a new part of town, experimenting with a sports activity, you name it.

We had the choice of a few experiences and decided to go for a wine tasting experience in south London. The idea of a wine tasting experience in Tooting sounded too intriguing and exciting to pass, especially as I'm not that familiar with south London, so we set up a date and booked the experience.

The experience was at Unwined, a cosy wine bar in Tooting Market. We were greeted by one of the hosts called Laura who immediately made us feel welcome and as if we've just stepped into a very familiar restaurant. We sat down with a group of people who were also there to experience the wine tasting trial and, as Laura was telling us, the spot has not only been popular by Londoners, but also people around the world. We got to learn about the hosts' background and their extensive knowledge about wine as well as learning about their background and why they chose to open a wine bar in Tooting. Laura stated that south London doesn't get as much exposure as it should, and since opening their wine bar a couple of years ago the market in Tooting has attracted the likes of Franco Manca and other popular restaurants.

We had a four course wine tasting menu ahead of us which kicked off with champagne, bread and butter and pancakes. Before beginning the wine tasting, we were given 12 gold coins to rate each course and the pairing with the food and wine.

airbnb, wine tasting, london, london wine bar, lifestyle blogger, uk blogger

We then moved onto mains. The first course was Mackerel cooked with cucumbers and topped with a mixture of herbs and paired with a crisp white wine. We then moved on to course three which consisted of beef cooked in XO sauce paired with a violet red wine.

For desert, we had fresh rhubarbs with crunched granola and white chocolate topped with a pairing of goats cheese. This wasn't a traditional desert pairing, however the combination of a sweet rose wine and the desert worked extremely well! 

airbnb, wine tasting, london, london wine bar, lifestyle blogger, uk blogger

airbnb, wine tasting, london, london wine bar, lifestyle blogger, uk blogger, airbnb experiences

The entire experience was an experiment of different tastes and flavours and see which wines paired well with the food.

airbnb, wine tasting, london, london wine bar, lifestyle blogger, uk blogger, airbnb experiences

If you're visiting London or a Londoner yourself, I'd highly recommend visiting Unwined in Tooting and having a wine experiment of your own. We loved all the wines we tasted and even left with a couple to take home. It was also a great way to meet new people and experience a completely new experience in a city. Have you been to any wine bars recently?

Thank you to Airbnb for taking us on this experience. All views are my own. 

Saturday, 8 April 2017

30 things to buy under £30 at Asos

Am I fuelling your Asos shopping addiction yet?


Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Review: YSL Beauty Fusion Ink Cushion Foundation

Cushion foundations first emerged into the beauty scene thanks to Japanese beauty brands. The trend was then followed by the rest of the world and brands understood the hype behind these skin-like foundations that aim to make skin look natural and glowing.

I've tried a couple of cushion foundations and have been generally impressed overall. The longevity and coverage of course varies on the formula designed by the brand but generally the skin-like glow from within is a finish that seems to work well on my combination skin.

I've been wanting to try this product from YSL Beauty as it's been raved out from bloggers and beauty experts, so I picked one up in Debenhams and gave it a try. With any product from YSL, you can expect the packaging to be sleek with a modern-looking finish. It completely stands out on your dressing table, and if purchased with outer packing (re-users can purchase the capsule foundation alone) makes for a great keepsake product.

The longevity
Is surprisingly good. I've been testing this on 9-5 work days, where I apply my make up around 7.30am and find that it lasts all day without going patchy or coming off.

The coverage
Again, I was pleasantly surprised by the coverage of this foundation. I'd say its a medium finish that leaves skin light and glowy and covers more than your average tinted moisturiser. I got this in shade B40, which in reference is around a NC37 in Mac foundations and 'Barcelona' in the Nars Sheer Glow. The shade selection isn't as good as the rest of the foundations from YSL, but if you have olive skin with warm undertones B30 or 40 would be a good match.

The price
This is the only down side to the product. At £38 a go, it's not a cheap product (although it's available on sale here.) However, once you buy the product with the packaging, you can buy the inside fillers for a lot less so that it saves having to re-purchase the packaging. I'd recommend going to a YSL beauty counter and getting the make up artists to swatch the product and test it all over so you can see the coverage. Make sure you look at your skin in natural day light too as the colour can adapt to your skintone.

I'd definitely recommend going to a YSL counter if you're on the hunt for a new everyday foundation and giving this a go. It's a massive yes from me! X


Sunday, 19 March 2017

Mother's Day gift guide

If there's one person who we can depend on, it's our mums. With Mother's Day coming up on the 26th of March, be sure to spoil or treat your mum with a thoughtful gesture that feels right to you. This doesn't have to be a gift, as when we tend to ask our mums what they'd like they say they don't need anything, so be creative and think of what she would really like. I've picked out some items to make shopping a little easier if you're on the lookout for something special. All the links below are shop-able. Happy spoiling x

Shop the products:


Tuesday, 14 March 2017

What to buy in March

Image source: Lauren Conrad

With fashion month having flown by, there are so many trends that we've seen both from the runways and on street style bloggers that are being picked up by the industry.


Monday, 27 February 2017

February beauty favourites

February was an exciting month in terms of new beauty launches and products I've tried. With a strict 9-5 beauty regime, I find myself going to the same products for daily basis and I don't tend to experiment too much during the week days. The weekends are where I try a host of products and really test them out to see what I like and don't. That being said, I've incorporated a lot of new beauty products into my routine this month and tested some pretty exciting products that I think you guys will love too. Read below to see all my favourites from the month!

Mac Strobe Cream, Goldlite, £25: Mac's strobe cream has been a make up artist and beauty industry favourite for years, so it was inevitable that the new collection featuring five new shades would be a hit. I went for the shade 'Goldlite' as I love a bronze/dewy look and I absolutely love wearing this under make up. It adds a subtle glow from within and keeps the skin hydrated. 

Becca Eye Brightener, £21: This is a fairly new product in my make up bag but it's safe to say I love it. It gives a really dewy glow under the eyes and works great under concealer. You could use this on it's own too if you want to brighten and hide any dark circles. 

Benefit Nude Gen Lipstick in Honeybun, £16: I've been a big fan of matte lipsticks lately and not really tried any dewy and hydrating lipsticks. I came across the Gen-Nude collection and I absolutely love that the lipsticks are formulated with natural oils and butters to provide moisture to the lips. The whole collection is really beautiful, I would try them out next time you're near a Bare Minerals counter if you're into nudes/mauves/pinks. 

NYX Wonder pencil, £4: Using a white eyeliner in the waterline is something I love doing and I find that it really helps look my eyes more awake. I love this one by NYX, it's goes on really smooth and lasts all day- and at £4 it's a bargain! 

Clarins Multi Active Jour moisturiser, £42: I've loved Clarins skincare since I was a teenager and have tried different moisturisers from their range. I love the Multi Active Jour as it's quite a thick moisturiser but really hydrates the skin and leaves it with a nice glow. It works for every skin types and doesn't agitate the skin.

Mac Golden Glow bronzer, £24:  This is my go-to bronzer when I want to add a bronze glow to the skin. On a daily basis I'll wear this on it's own, sweeping it over the cheeks. If I'm going out or want my skin to look quite bronzed, I'll use a matte bronzer first to contour then add a bit of this on top to give it some glow. It stays on really well and doesn't go patchy after a few hours like some products can do. 

Chanel Chance perfume, £61.50:  Chanel Chance has been my go-to scent for years. I love how fresh this perfume is and it never feels heavy or like you've got too much perfume on when you're wearing. This is a great everyday scent.



Friday, 3 February 2017

What to buy from Asos this month | February

Welcome back for a new shopping style post. Those who know me know how much I'm obsessed with Asos - I'm on the website weekly if not always checking for new pieces and trends that I can find. I love the versatility of the site, and that it offers so much choice (which can be quite stressful too!) but you know you'll always be able to find something. I love reading these shopping style posts on blogs I follow as it's really easy to find all the items mentioned in one place, so here's a new feature that I'll start to include monthly. Enjoy. A x

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