12 November 2013

Book Review - The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton.

The Forgotten Garden, despite being nearly 700 pages long, is a brilliant, don’t-want-to-put-down kind of book.
forgotten garden
The book flicks between 1913, 1975 and 2005, and travels between Austrilia, London and the west country. I don’t usually enjoy books that flick between different eras, and the reason I only gave 4 out of 5, is at times the jumping back and forth does get slightly ropy, however aside from the small flaws it is enjoyable.
The book contains a nice mix of characters, however the main character Cassandra, who to her surprise inherits Cliff Cottage following her grandmother’s death, I couldn’t warm too. For some reason, I found her a slightly unlikeable character.
Cliff Cottage sits within the grounds of Blackhurst Manor, which is notorious with the local villagers for the secrets contained within it’s walls about the doomed Mountrachet family.
The cottage has been abandoned for years, and in the cottage’s forgotten garden, Cassandra unearths the truth about the family, and why her grandmother Nell was found abandoned in Austrilia in 1913, after a gruelling sailing from England. The only thing that Nell remembered from that time was a mystery woman she knew as the Authoress, who had promised to look after her before she vanished without a trace.
In 1975, we read about Nell, then an old woman, travelling back to England and being lead to Cornwall, were she discovers the Blackhurst Manor and estate, owned by the Mountrachet family.
This is the first book by Kate Morton that I have read, and has lead me to discover her first book,The House at Riverton.
I highly recommend The Forgotten Garden, it is a perfect summer read.

10 November 2013

#BritishBloggerSelection - About Me Q&A.

This is my first #BritishBloggerSelection weekly topic, and this week we are doing a Q&A/interview to get started and introduce ourselves.

Question one. Why do you like blogging?

I like blogging because of the escape it offers from daily life. My blog is my own, personal space were I can post about things I like and find, delicious recipes, inspiration for my home & garden, it's like a great, big scrapbook full of my scribbles and thoughts.

Question two. How did you come up with your blog name?

I am not that keen on the name of my blog, it's only now I realise that I really could have picked better. Sadly enough, I ended up using a random website name generator, and Beauty In Things was the first option it gave me. I liked it because my focuses on looks of different beautiful things; cosmetics, homeware, photography etc, so I thought it was appropriate.

Question three. Where from the UK do you come from?

I come from County Down in Northern Ireland, and have lived here all my life. There are some beautiful areas as well.

Question four. Favourite colour?

Hmmmm....tough choice. Pink is always on the tip of my tongue but I don't think it is my favourite colour. I would have to say lilac/purple, or ocean blue. 

Question five. Do you like Lana Del Ray?

No. I like her voice and some of her songs, and think she is talented, but I don't particularly like her. Sorry!

Question six. Hidden talents that you have?

Working with computers. It is thanks to my current job that I realise that I am actually really good at working with Excel and using it to it's full potiental - formatting, formulas etc, and can do some pretty impressive things with it.

Through blogging I have also realised I am quite good at HTML, and in using Photoshop. All the elements on my blog from the header, to the sidebar headers and social media buttons, I have made myself. I was quite huffed with myself when I was finished!

I am also quite good at cooking. I have an ability of opening the cupboards and creating something with whatever is there. It usually turns out quite well too!

 Question seven. Celebrity Crush?

Benedict Cumberbatch. Without a doubt. Especially as Sherlock, but he was pretty tasty in Tinker Tailor Solider Spy (even though his character was gay!) And just because, here is the man himself!

Question eight. Favourite blog of all time?

Oooh.....I would have to say Becky Bedbug. She is funny, and I love her quirky sense of style.

Question nine. What made you want to join the #BritishBloggerSelection?

I love the blogging community, it is so supportive and active. I have seen other Blogging groups and thought they were a great way of interacting with lots of different bloggers, and its a great way of seeing what others think of the same subject. 

Silent Sunday 008.

9 November 2013


Morning everyone. These is a quick post to tell you all about Ellie of Little Vintage Camera's blogging group #BritishBloggerSelection

"#BritishBloggerSelection is a group of British bloggers, it doesn't matter what your blog is about, it could be a lifestyle blog, a cooking blog, a fashion blog, beauty blog, you just have to be British! I'm not sure exactly when it will start but it will soon and I'll contact you when it'll start!

I started #BritishBloggerSelection because I saw blogs with badges such as #I'mPartOfThe30DayBlogging Challenge or #MinnesotaBloggers or something along those lines!

What's in it for you? If you participate in #BritishBloggerSelection, you'll get more blog traffic, friends with bloggers you probably didn't even know existed!

How this works: Each week on Saturday I'll send you a theme to blog about and from there you blog about whatever you want related to that theme! You don't have to participate in this every week, just participate when you feel ready! No one's forcing you to do it every week!"

If you want to take part, head over to Ellie's blog, and get in touch with her giving your name, blog's name & link and email address.

If anyone is taking part, let me know so I can check out your posts! 

8 November 2013

Christmas Shopping - NotOnTheHighStreet.com

I am sure many of you have now begun your Christmas shopping, but for anyone struggling for ideas, I thought I would share some of my favourite online stores were I have found some unique presents for friends & family.

In this post I am going to share with you some brilliant gift ideas from the unique online marketplace, Not On The High Street.

Not On The High Street's aim is to "hunt out the most original items from the best creative small businesses, and bring them together in one place, making it easy for people to browse and buy."

So far I have bought some lovely things from different sellers, and these are my favourite items I have found so far.

I love these prints from British illustrator, Alice Tait. I have actually bought both the Map of London and the South Bank London Map prints, both very reasonably priced at £21.50 each, for my boyfriend who visited London for the first time this year and loved it. I thought these would make nice momentos, and would look fab against a white wall in black frames.

I am planning on buying my brother the Map of New York print next. He visited New York for the first time this year, and loved it. He is quite a stylish guy (if I do say so myself!) and this would be right up his street! Again, this print is priced at £21.50.

"Sweet Cecily's is a pioneering natural skincare company specialising in the personal touch. Our unique formulas and flavours have been largely generated by suggestions made in forums on social media sites.

The project is part of an existing family run business which researchs and manufactures herbal medicines, this experience in the field has helped brother and sister duo Cecily and Hugo to develop a truly natural and handmade range of skincare products."
The Sweet Cecily's range includes lip balms, body butter, hand cream, face cream, clay masks and kits.  I love lip balms that come in different flavours, (I have my eye on the Lime and Mango!) but for my friend, who also happens to like lip balms and cocktails (her favourite being Mojito) the Mojito flavoured lip balm is a must!

I love Pickle Pies phone cases. I got one for my iPhone recently, and you have up to 16 lines to list all the things you (or your friend) loves. 

And there is a whole range of products which can be personalised as well as phone cases including, iPad cases, tea towels, mugs, lunch boxes and prints.

There is definitely something for everyone at Not On The High Street, so definitely have a look, and let me know if you see, or buy anything!

4 November 2013

Hello November!

I can't believe it's November already! How time flies. I hope everyone had a lovely Halloween!

Firstly apologises for the absences on my blog recently. I have also been quite quiet on Twitter as well. I have been feeling under the weather recently, and still do, but I have seen I have reached 20 followers! I have also had over 2000 views, and I have only been blogging since September. So a massive Thank You to all of you!

Now that Halloween is behind us, the madness & run-up to Christmas has well and truly begun! I have started my Christmas shopping, and have been visiting some of my favourite shops & websites to start buying presents.

I am also on the Christmas Tree countdown. Every year we have got a real tree from the living room, and since moving into my own home, this is a tradition that I am going to keep going. I love getting the tree at the start of the month - also to ensure I get to choose a good tree and not what's left the week before Christmas, so I am now less than 4 weeks until Christmas Tree buying day is here!

I find this time of year can also be good TV viewing. I am an avid Breaking Bad fan, so I am trying to find something to fill the gap it has left. Sky were recently showing the first 3 seasons of Boardwalk Empire, but have taken it away now that season 4 has begun.

But, I am waiting (with very little patience) for the BBC to begin showing the next series of Sherlock, starring the delicious Benedict Cumberbatch! And in honour of Sherlock, I have been on Polyvore (again), to create a Sherlock inspired outfit.


22 October 2013

Autumn Walks.

Autumn Walks

I think I may becoming slightly addicted to Polyvore. For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, it is a great online tool that lets you create lots of wish lists. This is my 2nd, my first one was to create my dream Christmas Wishlist.

Autumn is really starting to set in now, with all the red & golden, crunchy leaves on the ground, and the crispier air. Scrolls through the park, and by the sea, are lovely this time of year.

I have been really loving Joules recently, their clothes are lovely, and full of pieces I want to wear on Autumn Walks.

My ideal Autumn walk outfit begins with a simple pair of skinny jeans, teamed with Joules' lovely Creme Meriel Womens Breton Stripe Jumper. The outfit is finished with a lovely warm navy snood, and cream beret, and finished with these gorgeous Joules Women's Field Wellies - Magenta.

14 October 2013

Bare Minerals Customizable 8-Piece Get Started Kit.

The wonderful Bare Minerals Customizable 8-piece Get Started Kit. How I love you so.

For anyone who is signed up to Bare Minerals mailing list, you may have seen the 5 Days of Complexion emails, which offered a different offer each day on their most popular complexion products.

I had wanted to order this kit previously during the 20% offer, but the shade I wanted, Fairly Medium, was out of stock in the Original foundation range. When I seen the email offering £5.00 off the price - £45 down from £50 - I couldn't resist. The kit is worth £108.00.

The kit contains:
  • Your choice of full-size foundation from the Ready, Original or Matte range, including chose of shade.
  • Original Mineral Veil finishing powder. 
  • Prime Time Foundation Primer.
  • Warmth All-Over Face Colour.
  • Full Flawless Face Brush.
  • Flawless Application Face Brush.
  • Maximum Coverage Concealer Brush.
  • How-to DVD, which shows you how to apply the products using Bare Minerals' Swirl, Tap & Buff method

Now, I am not a great fan of foundation. It tends to sit too heavily on my skin, shows off all my dry patches, and some brands just don't work with my skin. I tend to use tinted moisturisers instead, although Liz Earle's foundation wears pretty well on my skin. 

I have heard lots of good things about Bare Minerals, so when my kit finally arrived in the post, I ripped it open and quickly found myself in front of the bathroom mirror swirling, tapping and buffing away. 

I have been using the primer, foundation and mineral veil so far, applying the powders with the Full Flawless Face Brush. I love the products, and Fairly Medium is such a lovely colour and matches my skin well. The mineral veil adds a lovely, airbrush effect finish. 

The Full Flawless Face brush gives fuller coverage, where as the Flawless Application Face Brush gives light to medium coverage. I have applied the products with both brushes, and to my surprise I preferred the finish I got with the Full Flawless Face brush. I tend to be a more subtle look kind of girl!

I haven't tried the All Over Face Colour yet. The powder looks very dark in the pot, however I am keen to give it a go. 

Overall, I am really impressed with the kit and products, and will definitely be buying the foundation and mineral veil again. While I like the Prime time primer, I would be keen to try alternative products, as foundation primer is something I have never properly tried before. 

The kit is great value, and I would recommend anyone wanting to try Bare Minerals for the first time to consider buying this kit. 

7 October 2013

Christmas Wishlist 2013.

Christmas Wishlist 2013

Over the past few days, I have started to think about Christmas. Yes, granted it is still over 3 months away, and yes, Halloween is still a few weeks away, but I like to be organised, ready with my list of Christmas present ideas.

This year has been particularly hard to think of things to get people. I am not sure why, but last year seemed to be a particularly successful year for Christmas present buying.

But enough about buying for other people, what about me! Last year was a bit of a disaster. The boyfriend was going to buy me a tablet, all I had to do was decide which one. At first I had my heart set on an Amazon Kindle Fire HD, then heard from others that the platform wasn't very good. I lost interest in it.

After much debate, mainly with a like-minded work mate, I settled for the Nexus 7 - even though I didn't (and still don't) like the Android system & really wanted the iPad Mini. Christmas day came, Nexus 7 under the tree from the boyfriend. Very grateful.

Boxing day. Standing inside Currys with a Nexus 7 that refused to work. Sigh. It was replaced there and then with a brand new, unopened Nexus 7. My 1 day old broken one was whisked off, I presume to the bin.

The Nexus 7 has since failed to charge, then the battery died completely, wouldn't charge or switch on. So back to Currys where it was sent off for repairing, and returned 5 weeks later with a new motherboard.

This year's wish list to the boyfriend is going to be a smaller, less expensive affair. Although I do like to dream of the iPad Mini. Without further ado, my Christmas 2013 wish list:

1. Zara Mini Office City Bag - I love this bag. I have seen it featured on quite a few blogs, including some lovely pictures on Abby's blog. My favourite is the Burgundy colour, which has been out of stock for at least the past week unfortunately, but if it doesn't come back in, I like the Navy colour too.

2. Cloud Nine's The Original Iron - I am using GHDs which I have had for a few years now, and are due a change. I have read many good reviews for Cloud Nine, and my hairdressers recently started using Cloud Nine in change of GHD, and I love how they leave my hair.

3. Hairdryer - I haven't chose the exact one I want, but I currently have a Tresemme hairdryer which is a few years old, and has seen better days. Definitely time for a replacement.

4. Jo Malone's White Jasmine & Mint perfume - This is my absolute favourite Jo Malone scent, and I have recently run out, so a new bottle of this lovely stuff is a must!

5. Apple's iPad Mini - Think I said it all above, and I am a bit of an Apple fangirl. I do love iOS7 though, and would think it would work well on the iPad Mini.

6. Zara Structured Bowling Bag with Pocket - I love this. I am always on the look out the perfect sturdy bowling bag, and this is it! Perfect price too!

7. Links of London Charms - My parents bought me a Links of London charm bracelet a few years ago and never managed to start my charm collection. My boyfriend bought me my first charm for Valentines, and I would love one to commemorate buying our house together. We were also in London in June for a few days, and never got the chance to get a charm to commemorate being in London together for the first time (we both love London!) maybe a post-London trip charm?

Anyone else have their Christmas list written? What are you asking for this year?

4 October 2013

Pre-Christmas spending ban.

After posting my September Empties post, I had a sort through of all the un-opened products and have decided to do a pre-Christmas spending ban. I have more than enough products from last year's Christmas gift sets, so have no reason to buy anymore!

While the temptation of this time of year will be hard to resist - 3 months to Christmas, the stores beginning to stock all the tempting Christmas goodies, I have decided on 3 exceptions to my spending ban:-

  • Repurchases of products that I completely run out of, is allowed. Unless I can do without it/or have a substitute version.
  • Boots have an Advert Calender which looks very good, and I have never had a beauty advent before, so this will be my one and only treat.
  • There are a couple of birthdays during this time, and some beauty products are planned on being purchased for gifts.

I am going to start my ban from this Monday, 7th October, and keep it going until Monday 2nd December, 8 weeks in total. I will post little updates on how I am getting on, even the bad days! If anyone else is putting themselves through a spending ban, let me know! I am sure we could both do with some moral support!

P.S. I had a bit of a blog make over today, and made all the banners etc myself. Hopefully this will be the last blog make over I have...for a while anyway.

Also, I am still gaining numbers for the Bloggers Book Club I have been thinking of starting. A few of you have already signed up to receive the emails, and would love to try and gain some more interest to get off to a good start.

If you are interested to know more or sign up for the Bloggers Book Club, click here for all the details.

30 September 2013

September Empties.

Not many empties, next month there should definitely be more! I am actually contemplating a spending ban at the moment. I seem to have a never-ending supply of unfinished products! I was also doing a bit of a clear out over the weekend, and have a box full of unopened products, especially from previous Christmas gift sets, so a spending ban really is needed.

Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer - I am a big fan of Liz Earle's skincare products. I love the bottled version of the Instant Boost Skin Tonic that comes as part of the 3 step kit you can buy. It has a lovely, subtle floral scent, and feels nice on my skin.

I actually received a travel size of the spritzer, and loved having it handy in my bag to sprites over my face during the day, especially during the Summer to freshen. A must especially in an air-conditioned office!

It was enviable - I had to order the full size version! Repurchase? Definitely!

VO5 Heat Protection Styling Spray - I am so pleased this is done! I bought this in desperation when my favourite heat protection spray, Lee Stafford's Poker Straight Flat Iron Protection Mist, seemed to disappear from Boots' shelves.

This product did nothing for my hair. I found it harder to straighten my hair, and didn't offer as much protection from the heat as Lee Stafford's product, leaving my hair feeling dry, and looking quite damaged.

Thankfully, Boots have restocked on Lee Stafford's Poker Straight Flat Iron Protection Mist, and my hair is straightening beautifully once again! Repurchase? No!

Interested in a Bloggers Book Club, then read more about it here.

28 September 2013

Bloggers Book Club.

I have noticed the number of book reviews posted by a number of blogs which I follow, is on the rise. Recently, I have been wondering about starting a Bloggers Book Club if there was any interest.

Maybe something like this already exists, and I just haven't found it yet! But the format that I have thought of would be something like this:-

  • Beginning of the month - book club members/participants submit suggestions for the next book to read.
  • Middle of the month - poll held to select the "winning" book. Book choices from either the most popular suggestions, or the first  3 or 4 suggestions received.
  • End of the month - announce the "winning" book for reading during the following month. Hold a Twitter chat for members/participants to chat about the finished book.

If you are interested in joining/taking part in a Bloggers Book Club, answer the poll below so that I can get an interest of how many would take part. I have added a sign-up form below so you can add your email to the mailing list as well.

If there is enough interest, I was thinking of holding a poll during October to select a book to begin reading in November.

Are you interested in joining a Bloggers Book Club?

Subscribe to the Bloggers Book Club mailing list

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26 September 2013

Advice: Make-up for large pores.

This post is continuing on from the post I wrote last week about large pores: what they were, and how to deal with them as part of your skin care routine. You can read the post here.

This post is going to look at how to hide large pores with make up, and what kind of make up is best to use.

What are large pores?

Enlarged pores usually appear on the T-Zone - the forehead, chin and especially around the nose. They can also be a concern during puberty.

Large pores generally tend to be "little openings of the hair follicle onto the surface of the skin that provide a way for the oil glands underneath to lubricate and protect the surface of your skin".
Large pores tend to appear mainly around the nose area because this area has more oil glands that the other appears where pores can appear (forehead, chin etc.)

To achieve a flawless look & finish, and to disguise enlarged pores, just follow these steps:

Step One: Cleanse & Tone your face.

It is important to cleanse & tone the face before applying your make up. Use a gentle cleanser to remove excess oil and impurities from your face. Use a toner appropriate for your skin type, especially if you are prone to oily skin. Apply the toner with a cotton pad, and swipe across the face until your skin looks & feels clean.

Step Two: Use cool water or an ice cube to shrink large pores.

Swipe an ice cube all over your face. The cool water shrinks & refreshes the skin as well as moisturising it at the same time. If you don’t have an ice cube, splash your face with cool water. The Cool water/ice cube applied to the skin will temporarily reduce the size of the pores.

Step Three: Apply your moisturiser.

Apply your moisturiser as usual. Moisturiser is essential when applying makeup, no matter what your skin type is. It acts as a protective barrier to help trap moisture, it plumbs and comforts your skin and makes foundation easier to blend.

Step Four: Apply an oil controlling product.

Using an oil controlling product after applying your moisturiser is essential for those with oily and combination skin. You can find examples of oil controlling products in my first Large Pores post, here.

Oil controlling products gives the skin a long-lasting matte finish, as well as refining and tightening pores. Oil controlling products should be applied only to the problem areas - usually the T-zone (forehead, nose and chin.) They reduce shine, absorb the excess sebum (oil) and reduce the look of pores.

Step Five: Apply pore a minimising product.

A pore minimising product is like a foundation & concealer which instantly refines the look of enlarged pores and provides long-lasting matte and flawless finish. You can find examples of pore minimising products in my first Large Pores post, here.

Apply the product before you apply your foundation, only to problem areas or over the entire face if you don’t want to use a foundation.

Step Six: Apply a makeup primer.

Applying a makeup primer not only helps keep your makeup stay on for longer, but also helps hide enlarged, open pores by providing a good base for makeup application.

Primers create a smooth surface and prepare the skin for the foundation and powder. A primer works especially well for people with oily and combination skin, as it controls excess shine, absorbs oil and fills in enlarged pores, creating an even surface. My favourite primer is Benefit's That Gal Brightening Face Primer.

Step Seven: Apply Foundation.

Although many women use foundation to hide enlarged pores, others avoid using foundation on areas where enlarged pores are because it can magnify and attract more attention to the pores.

Powder foundation is different than a powder, although they both look alike. Powder foundation should be applied on a well moisturised face with a sponge, fingers or a foundation brush.
Reapplying foundation two/ three times a day without removing it, will create layers of powdery ingredients which “clog“ the pores and create an uneven surface. Foundations which are too heavy can settle into your open pores and make them appear larger.

A water-based, oil-free foundation are best for hiding enlarged pores because the subtle finish reduces the appearance of pores. Make sure you apply just a small amount of the foundation if you have enlarged pores, otherwise you can make the pores look even larger and more visible. Apply the foundation with a makeup sponge or with your fingertips for a more precise application.

Step Eight: Apply a loose powder

Applying a loose powder is a good way to correct your makeup during the day and to create a matte finish. Applying a loose powder will not clog pores, as long as your makeup is removed properly at the end of the day.

Loose powder is better for concealing large pores, because it provides good coverage and is usually translucent.

Loose powder will not make shiny areas flaky, as it contains more oil-absorbing ingredients. Apply it by dusting it lightly onto your skin with a large, powder brush. Apply the powder to the centre of the face and stroke your face gently to cover all areas evenly.

Apply the rest of your makeup as normal.

Useful Tips.

  • Make sure your makeup products are oil-free, nonacnegenic, noncomedogenic.

  • Always use an oil-free, water-based foundation that suits your skin type.
  • Using oil-free gels and lotions designed for oily skin will help control excess oil and shine.

  • Always remove your makeup in the evening and use a toner.

  • Do a cleansing mask once or twice a week to keep your skin clean and nourished.

  • Use a makeup primer to keep your makeup looking fresh all day long.

  • Keep all your makeup tools / brushes, sponges, applicators/ clean to avoid inflammation.

  • Avoid using shimmery makeup products as they can accentuate enlarged pores.

I hope you found this post useful. Leave me a comment if you have an area/topic that you would like advice/information on.

21 September 2013

Advice - Large pores, prevention & treatment.

I have recently noticed a little pattern emerging on my Stats page for key words which have been used to find my blog. Recently, people have stumbled across my blog using searches for "large pores nose" and "advice on large pores".

So, I have decided to do some research and write a post on large pores in the hope that whoever is coming across my blog while trying to find info & advice will find what they are looking for. I hope you find the info & advice you need.

What are large pores?

Many women of all ages & skin types worry about enlarged pores, often those with oily and combination skin types.

Enlarged pores usually appear on the T-Zone - the forehead, chin and especially around the nose. They can also be a concern during puberty.

Large pores generally tend to be "little openings of the hair follicle onto the surface of the skin that provide a way for the oil glands underneath to lubricate and protect the surface of your skin".
Large pores tend to appear mainly around the nose area because this area has more oil glands that the other appears where pores can appear (forehead, chin etc.)

What causes enlarged pores?

The following list are reasons why you may develop/have enlarged pores:

  • Sun damage
  • Genetics
  • Hormonal changes, for example, puberty or menopause
  • Acne
  • Blackheads
  • Skin dehydration
  • Trapped dirt, oil or dead skin cells
  • Incorrect cleansing/skin care
  • Excessive oil production
  • Overuse of makeup
  • Unbalanced/improper diet
  • Smoking
Some of the reasons may be surprising, who may not think they can lead to enlarged pores. Sun damage for example. The Sun's harmful rays causes the skin to thicken, and skin cells can collect around pores which will make them look larger.

The Sun more commonly damages the skin's collagen & elastin which results in the skin losing its elasticity and pores become enlarged because there is no collagen to keep them small & tight. Once your skin's collagen & elastin is damaged, your pores will begin to enlarge.

Another reason is Incorrect cleansing/skin care. It has been found that in 78% of case studies of people with enlarged pores is because of incorrect cleansing/skin care. If you do not remove your makeup in the evening, do not cleanse you face twice a day (morning & night), do not use a moisturiser and do not exfoliate your skin regularly, then you are more likely to have enlarged pores.

It is important to exfoliate your face at least twice a week because it removes the dead skin cells, otherwise if you do not exfoliate regularly the dead skin cells and surface oil will collect around your pores and make them look larger.

Pimples & blackheads can also cause enlarged pores if they are not treated correctly, for example, squeezing a pimple or blackhead can stretch the pore.

Excessive oil production is another main cause of enlarged pores. This is because the oil glands produce large amounts of sebum, causing the pore to expand itself in order to release the oil. Excessive oil production usually appears on the T-Zone as these areas contain more oil glands than other areas.

Puberty can also be a cause for enlarged pores because during puberty, the skin starts to produce more oil, and the pores have to enlarge to be able to handle the increased output.

Quick Summary...

Pores appear enlarged when they are clogged, dilated or infected, and that's why it is best to ensure pores remain less visible and small by keeping your skin clean.

Often the pores get clogged with dead skin cells, dirt and oil which makes them more prominent. This is why regular exfoliation is important to remove the dead skin cells to prevent your pores from enlarging, and to allow your skin to produce healthy, new cells.

Treatments for large pores... At Home


As mentioned above, exfoliation is vital for keeping your skin clean and to prevent your pores enlarging. Use a mild exfoliator, like some recommended below, twice a week to remove skin cells to help prevent enlarged pores, but make sure the exfoliator is appropriate for your skin type!

Reduce excess oil

Excess oil (sebum) production can also be a factor to developing enlarged pores. That's why it is important to control sebum production. There are products available out there that are designed with this aim. Some of these products I have found and recommended below.

These products work to reduce & control excess surface oil and prevent clogging of the pores. Look for products that contain Nordihydraguaiaretic Acid because it reduces the sebum production.

Pore minimising creams & lotions

Using a pore minimising cream or lotion can help keep facial pores under control. These products target the production of sebum deep in the pores, clear away debris and reduce the size of the large pores. The following products can be used:

Tightening Face Mask

Using a pore refining mask once or twice a week can help keep your pores clean and under control. These masks deeply cleanse pores and draw out impurities while refining the skin's texture. The following products can be used:

Steam your face

Steaming your face once a week to thoroughly deep clean large pores, to loosen debris and open the pores. The high temperature from the steam helps open the pores and this way the skin can clear itself from the toxins. Apply a deep cleaning face mask after steaming your face. See my post here on steam cleaning your face.

  • Use a mild exfoliator to help keep pores clear and less noticable
  • Treat large pores during the early stages to help prevent any further problems
  • If untreated properly, large pores can also lead to acne, skin infections and regular breakouts
  • Keeping the skin clean & well moisturised is the best way to prevent enlarged pores
  • Daily use of oil controlling products help prevent enlarged pores
  • Do a deep pore cleansing treatment once or twice a month to help keep pores clear and prevent clogging
  • Use products which contain alpha hydroxy acids
  • Regular exfoliation is important to reducing and preventing enlarged pores
  • Use pore minimising products every day
  • Always cleanse your face twice a day - morning and night
  • Always remove your makeup in the evening - Do not skip!!
  • Use lukewarm water to rinse your face - hot water can enlarge the pores
  • Do not squeeze pimples or blackheads
  • Use strips on the T-Zone area - forehead, nose and chin
  • Always wear sun cream with a factor of at least SPF15
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep skin hydrated
  • Keep makeup tools clean to avoid inflamation
  • Rub your skin with an ice cube as this closes the pores and keeps dirt out

Treatments for large pores...Professional

As well as there being a large number of products that we can buy and use ourselves to prevent enlarged pores, there are also a number of "high end" treatments delivered by beauty therapists/beauticians or dermatologists.

  • Microdermabrasion: a non-chemical treatment delivered by a professional. The treatment is designed to exfoliate & rejuvenate the skin using a tool that sprays microcrystal particles on the skin. It is an ideal procedure for shrinking enlarged pores by roughening up the skin, loosening the dead skin cells that clog pores. It can also stimulate collagen production which is important for healthy looking skin. The treatment removes the top layer of skin & not only reduces the size of pores but also wrinkles, fine lines, dark spots, acne scars and blemishes.
  • Chemical peels: with Trichloreacetic acid (TCA) it is the most appropriate peel for enlarged pores. The acid penetrates more deeply into the skin and removes the damaged layers of the skin, allowing new cells to form.
  • Deep pore cleansing treatments: the facial includes exfoliation, toning, cleansing, moisturising and extractions. It's the best treatment for enlarged pores caused by puberty because it balances oil (sebum) production, removes congestion and encourages healthy new cells to form.

I hope you found this post helpful, and found the advice/information you were looking for. I am also researching ideas for a post on Make Up for Large Pores if anyone is interested. Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below.

Please note: this post is for advice and information only. None of the products mentioned have been sent or recommended to me by the brands or outlets selling them. They were chosen by me during my own research for this post as a means for you to understand the type of products available. It is important to gain advice from a professional for your own situation.

20 September 2013

All brand new & the broken silence.

Recently I have been feeling rather sluggish & having no energy, and while lazing around spied the latest advert for Kellogg's All-Bran, promoting their 5 Day Challenge. Intrigued, I hopped onto the website and discovered it was aimed at people who feel bloated, sluggish and having tummy niggles. 

Research shows many people do not get enough fibre in our diets, and fibre, as most of us know, is needed for a happy, healthy and effective digestive system. By starting the day with a bowl of All-Bran, it contains natural wheat bran fibre - "which is the most effective cereal fibre for digestive health."

The challenge was simple - have a bowl of All-Bran at the start of each day, and by signing up for free on the website, track how you are feeling each of the 5 days.

So off to Sainsbury's I went, who were conveniently doing an offer on 2 boxes of All-Bran for a few pounds. I picked up 2 boxes of clusters, one in Caramel, the other in Chocolate. Gone are the days of the dull, brown sticks, these clusters were actually pretty tasty!

I easily stuck it out for the 5 days, having a bowl each morning before departing for work, and then updating my online Tummy Tracker once I was home. The Tummy Tracker also gives you hints & tips each day.

By the end of the challenge I was definitely feeling less sluggish and more energised! Was very much worth doing the 5 Day Challenge, and I have every intention of continuing with a bowl each day.

You may have noticed on Sunday that I posted my first ever Silent Sunday post. I came across this on Emma's blog, and found it really interesting.

Originally started by Comsic Girlie, the idea is to post one photo on a Sunday, with no other writing apart from the Post title, and it must be a photo taken by you which sums up your week. I thought this was something different to do with my blog, and I nice way to share some of my better photographic efforts, and I hope to post a Silent Sunday each week.