A Mask to Solve My Skin Woes... Lush Mask of Magnaminty Review

Friday, 30 August 2013

Having clear skin for me is an unusual and heralded occasion, it doesn't happen often and it requires lots of hard work to achieve it, so when I find a product which gets me one step closer to perfect skin, I grab tight and don't let go. First it was Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish as my holy grail product and now my beloved C&P has been joined by Lush; Mask of Magnaminty.

Mask of Magnaminty
125g £5.25
315g £9.25

Mask of Magnaminty is a 'face and back pack' a rather gruesome green colour, with a strong minty smell, this mask is definitely one of my skincare favourites. I've been using this mask for about over a month now, using it twice a week on problem areas. I generally pop it on when I get out the shower, and whilst it's on I put on my body lotion; two birds one stone hey?!

What I love about Mask of Mag' is that it's gentle yet effective, I only leave it on for about 10 minutes max, it feels a little tingly and cooling because of the mint, and leaves my skin feeling super smooth. I love using this in the morning as my skin is the perfect base for make-up after using it. I have tried Lush Cupcake before but it was a little harsh for my skin.

Another major plus for me with this mask is that it doesn't need to be kept in the fridge, it is not a fresh face mask and has a much longer shelf life, and it's a great face mask for those on a tighter budget, as one tub lasts ages!

Having clear skin for me makes all the difference, it increases my confidence, I wear less make-up and feel better about myself. I am not as self-conscious as I used to be about my skin but I still feel uncomfortable when my skin flares up, especially if people see me without make-up. And thankfully Mask of Magnaminty is miraculously helping me and I'd recommend it to anyone!

Helping me and my ever busy diary... Appointedd.com

If you're diary looks anything like mine squeezing in time to not only go to hair and beauty appointments but also book them can often seem like a Herculean effort. I mean my schedule is crazy to say the least, and rather embarrassingly I haven't had time to get my hair done (don't even talk to me about my awful roots) since the beginning of June! Luckily I've made time for an appointment on Friday.

Fear not though busy ladies and those in need of a helping hand when booking all your appointment needs, as there's a new kid on the block for all your booking needs; Appointedd.

source: Appointedd.com

Appointedd is a brand new salon booking software which launched earlier this month, with a slick and easy to use interface for both salons and customers alike it gets my vote for its simplicity and design, and though I haven't used it to book an appointment yet, I'll definitely be using it in the future to make sure I can squeeze in me-time during my busy weeks.

So you may be wondering what exactly is Appointedd and who is behind it? Well Appointedd is a new site which allows salons using its software to take guaranteed online bookings 24/7 and gives consumers access to reviews and ratings of salons in their area. Visitors to the site will also be able to access the latest deals and offers and browse the latest hair and beauty style inspirations

I attended the launch of Appointedd on the 12th of August along with other beauty bloggers, industry professionals and salon owners, the invite was a great opportunity to meet and network with others but most importantly to gain an invaluable insight into Appointedd from Leah Hutcheon (founder of Appointedd), listen to a great presentation from James Econs of Social for Salons via Skype (the wonders of technology eh) before a Q&A panel from a group of industry experts on the beauty industry.
Founder of Appointedd Leah Hutcheon said, “It has been such an amazing event - I feel really proud of us as a company because we’re now perfectly placed to make a positive impact on the hair and beauty industry, in Scotland and across the UK. We are delighted that so many influential people from the beauty industry were able to join us to celebrate the start of real change. We’re empowering salons and freelancers to connect with consumers to improve the experience for both parties.”

So what do you think of Appointedd? Have you tried anything similar before? www.appointedd.com

What a difference a year can make... Iona Blog is 1!

Saturday, 24 August 2013

If you asked me a year ago what I hoped to achieve starting IonaBlogs (now Iona Blog) I'd have simply said to do what I love more write, blogging for me gave me the opportunity to combine my love of beauty, fashion and food with my love of writing. One year on I'd never have imagined starting my blog would have such a profound effect on my life, I might sound a little dramatic but blogging for me has been truly life-changing.

Through blogging I have met some of the loveliest people, some of whom I now count as some of my closest friends. I've attended events and met industry professionals who have given me insightful advice and guidance. And I got a new job, effectively through blogging I got my internship which I love and continue to enjoy each and every day.

This time last year wasn't the easiest for me I was a bit down and blogging provided me with a release, a sense of community and starting up IonaBlog was one of the best decisions I ever made. I still haven't celebrated my blog birthday with tea and cake, though I plan to, at the moment everything is a little busy. Next week will simply be hectic, my induction for my final year of my BA at college, along with my 21st birthday and many other things thrown in for good measure, and the week after I have my 21st party and my first week back at college. Never quiet in my diary... Combined with currently having laryngitis, perfect timing as ever, things are currently crazy and great in equal measures.

I'll finish this with a couple of pictures from my first year of IonaBlog. (in no particular order, just a snapshot of my first year of IonaBlog, all of these pictures are from my instagram)

Benefit Stay Flawless Launch- June 2013

Joanne McGillivary Collection Launch- May 2013

Scottish Hair and Beauty Awards- May 2013

Scottish Bloggers Meet Up- August 2013

Taste of Tempus event- July 2013

Cocktails with two of my favourites! Laura and Kirsty- July 2013

Dinner with Nick Nairn- May 2013

Benefit Fake Up launch

SHABA Bloggers event; Meeting Lauren Goodger- April 2013

Next Home- April 2013

The Pokey Hat fashion show- October 2012.

Looking back on a whirlwind last 12 months is crazy, I've met so many amazing people and had so many incredible opportunities, here's to another year of IonaBlog, happy birthday little blog baby!

Flowers in her hair...

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Last week I headed to a rainy field on the outskirts of Glasgow to dance in a field along with thousands to a band I've admired from afar for years, who you might ask well Kings of Leon of course! My inner fifteen year old self was unbelievably excited to finally see KoL live, Only by the Night is one of my top five favourite albums ever, I love their older material and I'm so happy that their newest releases have once again got that similar kind of sound.

I had planned to get a few OOTD pictures but sadly the drizzly weather wasn't ideal for picture taking... I did manage to take a cheeky wee FOTD before I left the flat, I even had another chance to wear myflower crown, I can't wait to get another one! My Mum always calls me Helga when I wear it though... and says I look German/Latvian, what a meanie!

Pre show tacos ;)

All the florals...

The absolute legends that are Kings of Leon!

So we got free Jagermeister hats; how fashionable ;) mine was in my pocket
because of my crown but the hat deserved a cheeky snapchat!
This week I'm busy getting things ready for my 21st and looking forward to meeting up with some lovely fellow Scottish bloggers tomorrow to head to a show at the Edinburgh Fringe. Anyways I hope you're all having a lovely week, have you got to see one of your favourite bands live before? Did they live up to your expectations?

Birthdays come around so fast...

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Would you believe we're half way through August, the weeks are truly flying by and it's less than a month till not only my party but firstly my 21st birthday, when anyone asks me what I'd like for my birthday or christmas I struggle as I don't really need anything. Understandably my family don't like giving me money for significant birthdays as I very rarely end up spending the cash on 'something'.

I'd toyed with the idea of doing a kind of wishlist post with some ideas of things I'd quite like for my birthday/in general, a mix of cheap and then things I know I'll never get as they're rather ridiculous! French Bulldog anyone? ;)

First up is something which doesn't really count as my brothers are getting me it, an Olivia Burton watch; I never wear watches, in fact I own a couple of watches which need their batteries replaced. I fell in love with the Olivia Burton watches which are classic and stunning, I've not actually decided which one to get yet though... Here's one I like though and if you have any ideas from the site of which one to get let me know ASAP please :)

Olivia Burton; Modern Vintage Dot Design Navy and Gold 



I have loved Tatty Devine jewellery for years, I first discovered it back when I was a little obsessed with Lady Luck Rules OK! jewellery, sadly the brand no longer exists, but back then I was consigned to admire Tatty Devine from afar as it was a little out of my teenage budget. I still don't actually own any pieces from Tatty Devine shocking I know, but the piece I've lusted after the longest is of course a personalised name necklace; I love the pastel SS13 palette, especially with the little bird charm in blue, so pretty and perfect for a Twitter addict like me!

Tatty Devine 'Custom Name Necklace'
prices from £27.50


It's no secret that I am a self-confessed stationery addict and Paperchase is simply my stationery mecca, I could spend hours in a Paperchase store, not only do they sell pretty notepads, paper and pens, but adorable teacups and luggage too. I love this pretty scrapbook which would be perfect for making into a scrapbook of 2013/21st memories, this year has been action-packed, eventful and unforgettable, I wouldn't change it for the world and I want to remember it as it has happened simple as that

Paperchase; ZigZag Floral Scrapbook

Though the last thing I need is more jewellery, I love Bumble Bees if you hadn't guessed ;) bees are hardworking, like I aim to be, and they are so important, I'm not going to go onto a bee spiel but yeah I love this necklace from Ginger Pickle by Eclectic Eccentricity it's so sweet and is on a gold plated chain.

Eclectic Eccentricity; Bumbling Along Bee and Amber Necklace

Simply these shoes are adorable and I love them, I'm thinking I might buy them for heading back to college actually as they are just so sweet, I keep seeing girls wearing them and fawn over them even more!
Topshop; Martie T Bar Geek Shoes

Anyone noticing a theme emerging? I got a sample of this in my local Debenhams and have kept it in my handbag, I love the delicate sweetness of this and the subtle honey scent, plus the bottle is so cute!

Marc Jacobs- Honey 100ml EDP
The Perfume Shop


And last but not least the most ridiculous but something I'd pretty much love more than anything; a French Bulldog puppy, yeah I know it's not going to happen, but a girl can dream. I love their little faces, I'm forever fawning over Tammy of DIY Nails' Betty pics on Instagram, she's such a wee cutey! Similarly I also love the French Bulldog jammies in Primark which are amazing, no internet pictures though sadly...

this little guy is far too cute!

So if you could recieve anything as a gift what would it be?! As ridiculous as you like? I've just finished DIY glittering a pair of shoes for my birthday party, only 3 weeks to go! I hope you've enjoyed reading this post, till next time lovelies.

What would you do?! #48HRFRINGE

Monday, 5 August 2013

Having lived in Edinburgh when I was little I've always loved heading to the festival, and by festival I mean the Fringe! The Edinburgh Fringe is one of my favourite times of the year, there is something for everyone and I never fail to find something new and exciting. When I heard that Premier Inn were running a competition to win two nights stay in one of their Edinburgh hotels (I'd pick the Princes Street one as it's so central and easy to get to) one  along with £500 spending money for 2 to spend on a 48 hour dream Fringe in the fair capital I knew I had to get involved!

I love heading along to Edinburgh on the train and spending the day trapsing along the Royal Mile, nipping into see shows and trying out old favourite and new restaurants for a wee bite to eat. I work in Edinburgh a few days a week but never tire of the city, for me it's one of the prettiest and I love spending time there especially during the festival!

For me a dream 48 hours spent at the Fringe would go a little like this;


One of my must-see shows for this year is Piff the Magic Dragon & Mr Piffles; I first came across the Piff at the 2009 fringe when he was out on the mile flyering for his show with Mr Piffles (a chihuahua dressed as a dragon in-tow) sadly the show was on too late for my friends and I to go and see it but I briefly caught them at Mumford and Sons when they were a support act. I was gutted I didn't know they were supporting and once again missed them, this summer I am making a conscious effort to go and finally watch the Piff and the adorable Mr Piffles! twitter: @thepiff
Pleasance Dome, 7.10pm.

I love comedy and would have to squeeze in a fair few shows, having seen Kai Humphries supporting Daniel Sloss last year in Stirling I would definitely go and see him again, Kai is hilarious live and had us all in stitches! twitter: @kaihumphries
Gilded Balloon Theatre, 8.45pm.

I like to try and see a real variety of shows at the festival and something I've been meaning to go see for years is The Big Bite Size Breakfast Show, which features a number of 'bite sized' short plays, as well as breakfast. The act has won numerous awards worldwide, definitely a part of my dream 48 hour fringe.


Of course where to eat when at the Fringe, there are so many options but my dream 48 hours at the Fringe would include a trip to The Pommery Bar which is a pop-up champagne bar housed in The Signet Library, what better way to spend an hour or two then sampling different champagnes in the beautiful surroundings of the Signet Library.

One of my all time favourite places to eat in Edinburgh is without a doubt The Mosque Kitchen on Nicolson Square, I think I'd head here for lunch on my second day for a much needed pick-me-up ahead of more shows and shopping in the capital. Mosque Kitchen serves up some of the best curries I have ever eaten and at the cheapest prices, it's always heaving when I pass it during the Fringe but with good reason, it's amazing!
Edinburgh is home to many amazing homes of cake but having heard so many amazing things about Lovecrumbs and having never been my 48hours would not be complete without a slice of cake and a coffee.
twitter: @hellolovecrumbs

And then some:

No trip to the Fringe for me is complete without a traipse along the Royal Mile, having traveled a fair bit,  I can truly say I've never experienced anything like it anywhere else, I love watching all the street performers and chatting to the people giving out fliers and finding new acts and shows to go and browsing at stalls and in shops, a must for me.
This year Lush has brought its Gorilla Perfume to Edinburgh for the festival, the Gorilla Perfume Showcase brings with it a chance to delve into the history of Lush perfume and smell Lush perfumes which are no longer available for purchase. Complete with an art gallery, sound booth experience and the opportunity to buy some exclusive perfumes, the showcase is another example of why I love the Fringe, there are so many different and exciting things to try out!
 76-78 East Cross Causeway, Edinburgh

There are so many other events and shops and cafes I would squeeze into my dream 48 hours but I could literally have you reading for 48 hours if I included them all, if you're heading to the Fringe I urge you all to even try and visit one of these places, I'd also make sure to spend time in The Grassmarket, I love Armstrong's and have heard Mary's Milk Bar is pretty amazing. George Street wise I really like Candy Bar where they have a very reasonable food and cocktail menu! One of my top show rec's is Omid Djalili I saw his warm up show in Falkirk and it was so funny, as you can imagine I could go on for hours with how I'd spend time and money at the festival alas I shan't... 

It ain't half different...

As you may or may not have noticed my Iona Blogs has undergone a few wee changes, firstly it's appearance: now sporting a fresh blog design thanks to the amazing Gillian of ElevatorMusik my blog design is now looking much prettier, neater and most importantly more me!

The past week has been an interesting and one filled with many decisions, I won't go into it in much detail at present, but it looks like there'll be a fair few changes on the horizon for me, good changes but of course any change can be daunting. Yesterday I had a holiday from work and had arranged to have today off at my internship so I have had the closest thing I've had to a weekend off in forever! It's been pretty great! :)

I worked on Saturday then headed through to Edinburgh to my friend Hannah's 21st/hers and Kate's flat warming, we ended up in the infamous Hive home of cheap drinks and sticky walls, what's not to love ;) Where I met up with two of my favourite blogging ladies Laura and Kirsty we had a wee dance and even a wee trip to the chippy, oh so classy!

Yesterday I was feeling a little delicate you might say, after a few hours sleep, a full face of make up was applied and we headed to Cosmo for a massive munch to 'cure us' needless to say, Cosmo which is a newly opened Pan Asian All-you-can-eat buffet (next to the Omni Centre) certainly did the trick, after a big munch I headed to the train station back to Stirling for my friend Kelly's birthday BBQ I didn't actually eat as I'd had a big lunch but it was lovely to sit in the sunshine listening to ska and drinking prosecco, we even took a wee walk along to the local shows which were on for a go on the waltzers. 

Today I managed to have my first lie-in in months, it was pretty blissful catching up on much needed sleep then spending the day doing well nothing, apart from a little laundry and finally watching Wall E, I enjoyed a much needed lazy day off, back to work tomorrow :)

Looking super sleepy and full at Cosmo...

Can't say I'd ever been to a party with a snake at it

At the shows yesterday, after Kev won the pervy unicorn!

Spend my evening in a bubble you say...? Natura Bisse Bubble

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Earlier this month I was lucky enough to attend an event at Hotel Missoni, which brought the most exclusive beauty treatment to Scotland for the first time ever! It was only the second time the treatment had been offered in the UK, which treatment might this be you ask? well the Natura Bissé Pure Air Bubble of course.

"Making its debut at the 2009 Oscar Awards, the Natura Bissé Bubble Pure Air has made its way around the globe. 

Hotel Missoni Edinburgh and Natura Bissé  specialists offered the award winning O2 Awakening Facial within the Bubble Pure Air– the first space which allows you to breathe 99.9% of pure filtered air. 

The 60 minute beauty ritual uses a light as air formula to eliminate toxins, balance and repair the skin, leaving you looking and feeling relaxed and radiant. By creating an environment that is purified, the effects of products used within the Natura Bissé Pure Air Bubble are increased dramatically and the pure air surrounding those undergoing the beauty treatment will offer the ultimate tranquil experience."

The Natura Bissé  bubble in a nutshell is an airtight tent into which 99.9% pure filtered air is pumped into, by having the tent filled with clean air, it means any beauty treatments carried out will be more effective, as there'll be no airborne dirt or germs, clever huh?

I met with a few of my blogger ladies and headed along to Hotel Missoni for an exclusive look and try of the revolutionary treatment, and I must admit at first I was a little taken aback, I mean it was a massive white pod (which reminded me somewhat of a UFO). After a welcome talk on Natura Bisse and  a glass of prosecco, a group of us were taken on a tour of the small yet perfectly formed Hotel Missoni Spa. I loved the interior in particular the funky chairs and lime green locker room!


We then returned to the 'Bubble' room for afternoon tea and some chatting with the Stripe Communications girls whilst waiting our turn for our mini-facials. Having a facial in the bubble felt almost like I was in a cocoon (I sound like an absolute loon!) but it was cosy yet cool, and having asthma I really enjoyed spending 20 minutes or so breathing in the clean air, and my skin looked great the next day. Rafael Nadal is said to sleep in his own Natura Bisse bubble after training sessions and matches, if it's good enough for Nadal? 

Not the best of selfies, but I had to get a picture in the bright green locker room with massive mirrors!

My facial was carried out using the Natura Bissé  oxygen products which were gentle and soothing on my sensitive skin, I'd actually been a little apprehensive that my skin would react but I needn't have worried, my skin felt and looked great after my facial.

Thanks to the lovely ladies at Stripe for inviting me and to the fab team at Hotel Missoni; I'd love to spend a night there from the incredible views to the typically Missoni interior it's pretty amazing.

Till next time lovelies,