A Sincere but Light-Hearted Mission To Make More of Myself!

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Getting the Glow with a Green Monster!

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Getting the Glow with a Green Monster!

I’m liking the Green. . .

My mission is to make more of myself. I’ve previously talked about how I go through phases. One week, it is all about the lipstick. The next, it is all about the bling and then the next, haircare. At the moment, it is less about the products (just a little less though) and more about good old fashioned science or as I prefer to call it ‘beautiful living’.

I’m trying to find out more ways of living which could actually help me make more of myself now and in the long run.

Yesterday I had my first ‘Green Monster’.

Typically of me, I forgot to take a picture so this one is from the Green Monster Movement website. Mine didn’t look quite as good.

In fact, mine was browny. It looked gross and it smelt foul but actually it tasted ok. It certainly tasted yummier then my very first green tea. These green smoothies are supposed to give you a HUGE increase in energy and decrease your cravings for sweet things. Oh and this is a direct quote from Angela the founder, ‘My skin has also become more clear and my hair and nails started growing like weeds!’

Yay, I’m excited about this little drinkie.

The main ingredient is spinach. This or kale is mandatory as is some form of milk. However as long as these two ingredients are there, you can add any other ingredients you want (many people do choose seeds and fruit though), blend and ta dah, you have a Green Monster!

Since I can never have too many antioxidants, I added 5 or 6 large strawberries then a banana and a very small scoop of sunflower seeds to my little Monster.

It tasted like a creamy banana, strawberry concoction with a slight tinge of something else.

Obviously, the spinach or the kale is always going to add some nutritional goodness. Spinach has Iron, Folic Acid, Dietary Fibre and Vitamins A, C, E.  Milk provides the Calcium but the rest is up to you. You can make your monster as calorific or as slimslime as you like.

I had my monster for lunch today and along with the leftover strawberries, I didn’t feel any hunger pangs or any need to top my meal up with anything else. I will certainly be having more and it will be a bonus if my skin starts to glow!

I found out about Green Monsters in Gemmas fabulous video here  Gemma always provides excellent links and information. I love her channels!
There is also a whole movement here

I also think that many of you will love ‘Oh The Glow’, the blog where the Monsters originated.

Angela is a health blogger who has completely changed her own life and got her glow again. Now, she is inspiring others to do the same. This blog is so different to any I’ve come across before (admitedly I haven’t really lurked in the “healthy living” communities) and you really have to take a peek to see what I mean. I only found it on Friday night but I stayed up hours reading Angela’s stories and her amazing ideas. Today, I can not stop talking about this blog. Check it out here

What with green monsters and green teas, I’m now starting to think as long as it is called ‘Green something‘, it will be good for me!

Have you tried a Green Monster? What do you think of the inside out approach to beauty and life?



Written by essjay23x

July 19, 2010 at 1:50 pm

Action time!

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Action time!

So I have been doing a lot of talking on my mission lately and maybe not enough applying. I think because my make up collection is now almost adequate (ahem, I do really want to try some more of the Famous range though), I have being less inspired to try things out.

So over the last couple of days, I have been trying to mix it up and try out some different looks. Some of them wearable, some of them not so.

Now my photos are still not great but I am going to show two looks that I created. Both of them are based on tutorials from Pixiwoo.

The first is Sam’s Festival look

See the tutorial here




Benefit Hollywood Glo (instead of foundation)

Maybelline Peach cream blush


Sigma Indian Girl Powder shadow (This was a free sample, I can’t decide if it is a grey or brown shadow)

A Rimmel liquid eyeliner

Max Factor Lash Extension Effect mascara


Collection 2000 Baby crystal

I had to impromise a little with products. I don’t think that I had any of Sam’s suggested products to hand. Her version seems to appear more bohemium and festival-like then mine but with a proper base, I’m actually quite liking this one for a daytime look. Saying that I will probably keep Hollywood Glo in the mix somewhere. I had forgotten that I had this product and I’m liking it. For a festival, I’d imagine it would be able to hold its own without a base. Also the Sigma eyeshadow was a bit of a revelation, I have heard Sigma make up been slated more then once but this shadow was a pleasant surprise although I can not decide what colour it is. Grey or brown?!


The second look is Nikki’s Christina Aguilera look.

See the tutorial here



Revlon Photoready Vanilla

MAC Harmony (to contour, no blush)


RSVP from Benefit (as base and eye highlight)

Rimmel Glitzed eyeshodow (for the lid)

Maybelline Fudge( for the inner socket and then outwards to contour all the way to outer corner and brows)

Max Factor Lash Extension Effect Mascara

A little liquid eyeliner (applied to the roots of upper eyelashes)


Rimmel red lip liner (until it broke)

Barry M Cherry Red Lip Laquor Crayon (to line and fill)

Benefit Frenched lipstick

My look ended up as a bit more of a Pin up vintage look rather then a Christina one. Maybe because I had no glitter (for the lips) or false lashes. Nic said that the lashes needed to look spiky so ideally next time I would use my double tubes (messy) mascara but this time I just tried to apply the mascara in very short, jerky movements covering bits of each lash at a time rather then brushing the mascara all the way through. Does that make sense?!

I felt a bit let down by Rimmel when I did this look. Firstly the red crayon type pencil from them snapped when I tried to use it to line my lips and secondly, I just feel that Glitzed (which I have posted about before ) was struggling to speak for itself. The pigmentation seemed weak and the colour difficult to build.

So what about you? Do you use tutorials on You Tube to try and develop your make up pisazz? What teachers do you recommend?


Written by essjay23x

June 12, 2010 at 4:18 pm

Tea for me!

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Tea for me!

Well Girls, now, you will see a cup of tea.

Ta dah!

What is more, it is a cup of tea which I have drunk and enjoyed.

Tra, la, lah, la . . !

As long as it is green, tea is now my new favourite thing.

Since Sunday, there has been a new ritual at Little Palace d’Essjay and that is two mugs of green tea for moi, a day.

Many of you may be surprised as I have spoken before about the fact that I only drink tap water (and very little of that) on a day to day basis.

Yet within four days, there has been a complete turnaround. I love my green tea and I can not imagine living a day without drinking it.

Now, this may sound a little dramatic. It is early days but the green tea really has made a difference to the way I have felt. For me, there has certainly been more of an immediate and obvious change then what I feel the multivitamins or the Evening Primrose Oil or the Cod Liver Oil achieved.

In short, I have been bouncing around these last few days.

I’ve heard about Green tea before but it was BelleDuJour NYC’s recent video, , which inspired my new daily routine. Dara claims it is her no 1 beauty and health secret. She says that it makes her skin so vibrant. Well, I had to try.

To be honest, I slurped and swallowed those first awkward few mouthfuls on Sunday with my skin, in mind.

However although it seems to have done my skin no harm, the real difference I feel is in my mood and energy for life. I’ve been skipping around from the moment that I had that first mug on Sunday. At first, it tasted revolting. However by Monday, I could feel the difference and this compensated for the gritty taste and now I don’t really taste the tea at all. It is just that warm aftertaste (and feeling) that I crave.

Apart from the intitial taste, the only other low point was that I felt slightly nauseous on Monday. This may have been the shock of the caffiene in my system- apparently green tea can have more caffiene then coffee or it could have been my stomach suddenly having to cope with the fact that I was actually drinking something which is quite unusual for me!

The nausea has now passed and I look forward to my green tea. Apparently there are lots of other benefits of drinking green tea.

I don’t understand it all yet but apparently it is packed with antioxidants which can rid our bodies of the toxic byproducts ‘free radicals’ which can benefit all areas of our life from beauty to health. Some studies even suggest it can help with cancer. Then of course, there are some who believe it can help in weight control. Again something possibly to do with the antioxidants boosting metabolism which means you burn more calories doing the normal things you normally do or something . . !

I do want to find out more about all these long term benefits but for now, it is enough that this tea just makes me feel good.

If you want to find out more about green tea, you might find these references a good starting point:

University of Maryland Medical Center

Beauty Brains

An article about tea

EHowHealth on You Tube

I purchased my Birt&Tang Organic Green Tea (20 bags) from TKMaxx for less then £2.

Oh and Girls, if you do decide to have a cup then please read all the warnings and disclaimers with your product. As great as it is for me, Green tea is not necessarily suitable (or safe) for everybody.

So have you tried green tea or any other exotic beverages (if it is not tap water then as far as I’m concerned, it is exotic!)? I’d love to hear your suggestions and comments. I’m not sure about Nettle(!) Tea.

Ooh and look out, the next post will be my 100th since the mission began!!!


Written by essjay23x

May 20, 2010 at 8:46 pm

L’Oreal and Elle New Talent Competition.

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L’Oreal and Elle New Talent Competition.

I’ve said it before but I will say it again! I have learnt so, soo much on my mission from all of you other Bloggers and You Tubers out there. Some of you are not only so passionate about your blogs and channels but I think you are incredibly talented and I personally think you should flash your talent which leads me to something I spotted while sitting out in the sun earlier this morning, flicking through Elle.


L’Oreal and Elle are having a competition to find a budding make up artist. The winner will get to work backstage during London Fashion Week as well as assisting on an Elle shoot which will be published in the magazine AND you get a professional L’Oreal make up kit.

Wow, what a fabulous opportunity for someone!

Obviously such an amazing experience is not going to be given to just anybody and girlies, there is some work to do. A mood board; a face chart and an inspiration rationale but you have plenty of time, the competition does not close until the 2nd of June.

I don’t think I could ever win (unlike some of you more talented things) but I might have a shot anyway. The geek in me thinks it would just be fun putting the entry together anyway!

What am I like?!

Seriously though if you have talent, what are you waiting for?! Hope across to to find out more.

Edit: I have used the link above and keep getting a black, blank page so have found this link. Might be worth a go as well

Oh and good luck!


PS If you work in a shop (oh, I wish I still did then I could enter this one too) then you might want to check out the Elle Shop Girl to Stylist competition. Amazing opportunity alert again, an internship with Elle magazine. I’m thinking The City . . ! Check it out here

PSS Just to be fair, Marie Claire also have another amazing opportunity for some girlies to be mentored by some of the most sucessful women in the country. See  for more info.

Written by essjay23x

May 5, 2010 at 12:25 pm


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Hey Pretties

I’m a tad excited. Well, very excited.

Laura aka Lollipop26 did a post today about the gorgeous Viva Glam Cyndi lippie and she wrote about a very scientific test of mine. Ha! You can learn more about my theory and see a beautiful picture of Laura wearing said lippie, here.

I just wanted to do a little post here to share my excitment with all of you, Lovelies. Laura was one of the very first Gurus I found online and I have shamelessly stalked her (sorry about that, Laura) ever since.

I have brought so many things, at least in part, because Laura recommended them. To name but a few, Barry M Pale Purple, Ginger Body Wash from Treacle Moon, Gleam, Sable, All That Glitters, Angel, Neutrogena cleanser, Revlon ColorStay, Stunning, Fantasy and the pennies I keep on spending but to be honest, I can’t think of one ‘Laura recommends’ that I totally regret.

There are a hundred blogs out there that I adore and I am discovering more all the time but ( ) is one of my major influences ( Muhsine  is also responsible for a lot) and in the past -when I have been thinking about this post, that post or when the computer is playing up and I have a post but no pics to put up-, I have found myself asking what would Laura do?!

So this may sound a bit pathetic but the post today meant such a lot. Thank you, Laura.

I just hope one day I can reward my lovely followers with such an amazing blog. I have a long, loongg way to go but that is the fabulousness that I’m aiming for.

I hope some of you might stick with me on my way. I will do my utmost to do you proud.

Since we are talking Cyndi. I am going to have a little rummage to see if I can find a FOTD from a few weeks back of Cyndi and I.

EDIT: I had a rummage, it is another not so great pic but you get the idea. I really do like this lipstick. It speaks for itself in this pic and catches the eye straight away. It is red but in fact, it is closer to the natural lip colour of my lips then my great lippie love, Snob or Viva Glam Gaga and therefore, actually less hassle to wear out. I certainly don’t need to touch it up as often.

Meanwhile, here is a link to a post I did about Cyndi and a possible dupe.


Written by essjay23x

May 2, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Sunday Snippets

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Sunday Snippets

Hey Sunshine People!

You know how I am going to work hard on my blog for the whole next five days, well quite hard. Well, today I am feeling a bit lazy. It is a combination of that Sunday feeling, the sun being out and of course, all that swatching yesterday so today I thought we could just take a peek at a few of beauty and other girlietastic snippets that I’ve picked up in the papers and on the internet this weekend. One of my favourite Sunday things is just coasting through the papers and surfing the internet, bobbing along, looking for nothing and just seeing what catches my imagination and today, I’m taking you with me. Hold tight, we’re in for one fabulous journey. I’m thinking Sex and The City, free mascaras, a little beauty science and a scentastic perfume release. Of course, you could always just take the bus instead and just pick out whichever bits/links here interest you if you prefer ;-)

Firstly, things to look forward to this summer.

*Jennifer Anniston’s first perfume LoLavie. It sounds like a fresh and floral scent designed to match Jen’s outdoor personality. Perfect for the summer, maybe? Here is a picture of the perfume bottle that I found on the celebden link below.

*Want something else to look forward to this summer? To celebrate the new Sex and City film out in May, Vex and The City has a pretty MEGA prize up to win for anybody who may be going to New York anytime soon

If New York isn’t inviting you then console yourself, Candace Bushnell has a new book out on the 29th of April, The Carrie Diaries and then just a month later, there is the film! Ooh, let’s take a moment to indulge in the SATC vibe with the trailer here

Secondly, The Sunday Times Style magazine had a feature on skincare today. Of course, now that I’ve found a toner-Botanics Organic Rosewood-that I really heart, they only had to go and answer my burning question.

I’m sure that I’ve asked it here before but I’ve always wondered, is toner really necessary? No, not any more according to The Times. They suggest that the main function of toner is to remove all traces of your cleanser but they also explain that cleansers have now moved on and are designed so that they can be removed just by following the directions on that specific product ie. if it says rinse, that is all you need to do. They actually suggest the use of toner could damage your skin by drying it out and making you age faster.

The Times also seem sceptical about natural skincare. In the first, they suggest that mixing and combining too many products and brands including natural ones in our skincare routine can confuse our skin. Certain combinations of ingredients from different products could react together to produce holes in our protective layer of skin. They could also defeat the object of the opposite ingredient. They highlight the example of retinol which shouldn’t be mixed with acids such as vitamin C or glycolic acid as these will break down the retinol before it can treat wrinkles.

Secondly, they suggest that although organic skincare seems so trendy at the moment, it will not necessarily benefit each individual. It seems some people will react better to manufactured creams etc and they warn about skin reactions (ahem!) to natural ingredients such as Lavender and Vitamin C. Then they very, very importantly note that organic skincare is unlikely to provide the same sun protection as other products.

Thirdly, you guessed it, what would Sunday be without me mentioning Fabulous magazine from The News of The World?! They are offering free Maybelline mascaras to the first 1500 people to complete their beauty survey online and then another 1500 to those who do it by post. The cute little freebie is The Falsies Mascara. Apparently, it has a unique brush like a spoon to coat very lash. Oooh, la, lah. Might be worth a go, pop across now and see if you can bag yourself one.

Why not, once the survey is complete (and you’ve reread all of my beauty science above) settle down somewhere cosy and enjoy some of these sunny You Tube videos?

*Kandee Johnson Come on an adventure with me

I went to Santa Monica a few years ago and this reminds me of happy times. I love this video and it makes me all excited about the summer to come.

*SWalker Dubai Vlog

 Brilliant video, great music, great editing. Could Sara be as good at making videos as she is at make up?! What a lovely memento to have of your holiday and Dubai, I’m coming to meet you one day!

*The Make Up Diaries Wearable Summer look

Onnagh does not seem quite as well-known on You Tube but I think her tutorials are fab. A working and professional make up artist, she explains her tutorials very clearly and succintly. Check out her new summer look at the link below and if you get a chance, check out a Danni Minogue look which I think I have linked to before. Such beautiful make up.

*PixiWoo Fun Summer look

Here is a gorgeous summer look from Nic. I love the lip colour

*PixiWoo Amazing Photographic Makeup

Well, I’ve already featured Nic. Here is Sam’s latest video. This is a reconstruction of a look from her portfolio. I am desperate to do blue eyes now and as for the lips. . ! Well, they are daring but I thought the technique was quite creative

Until next time, after a little more sun . .


Congratulations Laura!

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Congratulations Laura!

Laura, Emerald Green 88, has 150 followers and to celebrate, she is having a giveaway where one lucky winner will win a bumper stash including some MAC (All That Glitters!!) and many other beauty faves.

As part of the giveaway, you must follow Laura’s fabulous blog. Laura is happy to have more followers as long as they are loyal to her posts and not just there for a giveaway.

I really suggest you take a look at Laura’s blog. Her brilliant blog was one of the first that I followed and I really look forward to her fabulous FOTD’s and very regular, detailed updates. Her approach to blogging seems as professional as her nature is friendly (she dedicated a whole post to me once with swatches when I was umming and ahhing over purple eye make up. So sweet). I can’t imagine it’ll be long before she has another 150 followers so what are you waiting for?! Hop across now and be inspired by one of her gorgeous product finds or what about her Indian wedding look?

This is Laura’s link


Written by essjay23x

April 12, 2010 at 9:09 pm