Advent 2016: Day 16!

Today was mince pie baking, something that always makes the house smell of Christmas, at least to me, so it really feels like the lead up to Christmas now. I know mince pies are a fairly stereotypically British Christmas thing but do people in other countries eat them too? Or does your country have something that’s ‘unusual’ as a food for around the holiday season? It’s something I’ve wondered as I only really see the German foods in local supermarkets and some Italian maybe but I have no idea if they’re Christmas food or just something we have at Christmas as something different and I see the more American foods in to shows and movies but I don’t know much about anywhere else.

I’ve mentioned before about my love for purple, especially when it comes to nail varnish, so today’s Ciate Mini Mani Month nail varnish in Chain Reaction is definitely a good one for me being a metallic shimmery royal purple. The Marks and Spencer present is one I’ve had before a couple of times, I think once in a beauty box and the other in last year’s calendar and it’s the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer which seems a staple in beauty subscription boxes. The Yankee Candle today is Spiced Orange, probably the least Christmassy of the scents to me so these are actually mainly being kept until after Christmas as I have more tea lights than I need in the run up to it.

Hair care products in these kinds of things are rarely ones that have much of an effect on my hair, it’s thick and eats up everything but is in great condition despite being dyed often so it’s a very niche hair type. This Philip Kingsley Elasticizer is for all hair types and is supposed to improve manageability, bounce, elasticity and shine which pretty much covers most things these products could do. It’s very thick but does spread evenly easily through wet hair, there isn’t very much scent as it’s very subtle and it’s the sort of generic salon product scent. It’s a prewash treatment so you apply it on wet hair, leave it for 10-20 minutes and then use your normal shampoo and conditioner. I find it does make my hair softer and it feels good but beyond that I don’t se much difference, maybe if your hair is thinner or needs the moisture it might have a better benefit. I have found that it doesn’t remove any colour more than it would normally, and that’s including semi permanent purple and permanent red, which does put it above a lot of other hair treatments I’ve tried. This tube is 40ml and I know from experience when my hair is shoulder length it takes all of it, as mine is really short now it’ll do three or four I expect. At full size there’s a range of sizes available from £17 for 75ml to £60 for 500ml if you know you really like it.

Today’s Ciate nail varnish has a similar formula to the one on day one though it’s a royal purple rather than a bronze base. Chain Reaction has a really nice slightly shimmery metallic finish and is opaque in two layers. One layer was almost opaque so it might be one that works as a last minute, just leaving, kind of nail varnish to look OK from a distance. Does anyone else have those or just me? This is a Gelology formula nail varnish and is meant to be used with the top coat to last longer. So far the one I tried with this formula, the one from day one, worked really well even without it and it’s only been the tip wear but no chipping that the nail varnish has come off after a week. At the moment this isn’t available on their website, there is only a small range of Gelology colours though I think they may be increasing this if the amount in the advent calendar are anything to go by.

The Yankee Candle today is Spiced Orange, probably the most subtle and least full on Christmas scent in the calendar for me. The cookies are maybe also not very Christmassy but I tend to only use them around now but the Spiced Orange I can see being used the rest of the year, especially Autumn, as its just a muted orange with some light spices and smells sweeter than I’d expect. I do like it but it’s not one that fills the room well or has a far throw in this tea light form, maybe the wax tarts would be the best as I tend to find that in a lot of scents they have the strongest scent. This is available in a range of scents and isn’t in the sale at the moment so they’re all still in stock, though a few are low. The tea lights cost £6.99 for a pack of twelve. 

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