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Aurelia – Miracle Cleanser – Honest Beauty

I’ve been planning to write a series of posts on Honest Beauty for a while now.  Taking my favourite skincare and make up products that are kind to nature, kind to skin and have had a particular impact on me.

First up is the rather spectacular Miracle Cleanser from Aurelia Probiotic Skincare.  I first wrote about this little gem back in October 2014, this little pot of loveliness was first given to me by the then new brand to try.  Since I’ve bought a glass tub (think old chemists and apocatherapy shops) for myself every Autumn, and introduced it to friends.

What has kept its space in my bathroom cabinet over the years is a mixture of very good ingredients, Bergamot, Eucalyptus, Chamomile, Rosemary, with equally amazing smells and added to that, a creamy texture which at this time of year works as a dual cleanser and moisturiser, a generally non abrasive nourishment for the skin.

At £42 its a luxury buy which will take you all through the colder seasons of the year, keeping your skin soft and smooth.

If you want the technical probiotic and bioOrganic reasons for buying check out my old post here or take a look on the website,

It’s also available from Urban Retreat Beautique

Love  DSB X

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Sephora Favourites

International brand Sephora has a great take on the best beauty products on the market from skincare to make up.

Mr B knows he can be on a work trip anywhere in the world and all he has to do is find a  Sephora store for a winning gift

So good is this ubiquitous hub of beauty and so well trained are the staff that you could point a monkey into a Sephora store and they would leave with a monochrome bag of brilliant beauty finds, tailormade to suit you. No offence to monkeys or Mr B intended!

So what’s hot right now?…..Here’s my pic of current favourites……

Sephora Favourites

Skin Super Foods

Nine delicious super food treats for the skin.  I loved the the black charcoal, peel-off Luminizing Black Mask it removes blackheads, impurities, and excess oil, it leaves your skin bright and polished.

I also love the Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser it feels like a thorough cleanse. It clarifies with fresh enzymes, clays, and essential oils leaving a smooth finish.

I’m also now addicted to the Luminous Dewy Skin Mist, it contains Okinawa red algae and hyaluronic acid for a boost of soothing hydration and a luminous complexion. All I know is this makes my skin glow and is going everywhere with me this summer.


Sephora Favourites

Give Me Some Nude Lip

Mr B bought something similar in the past, and as ever its a winning combo.  As a lover of a nude lip he cant go wrong with this set.  All the must-haves here to give you the perfect nude lip look, including one full size and five deluxe sizes of nude lip essentials. This multibranded set includes a liquid lipstick, gloss, lipstick, and a lip plumper to help you find your perfect nude hue—including a full-size Ciaté London Liquid Velvet Moisturising Matte Liquid Lipstick. Delicious!

Sephora Collection

Illuminate Palette

If you were a fan of last years highlighting beauty craze then you will love Illuminating powder. Highlight like a pro with this pastel palette that illuminates the face, shoulders, and décolleté. The silky formula, (yes it really is silky) blends seamlessly into the skin, delivering radiance where the light naturally hits. The stunning array of hues enhance every skin tone and can be mixed and matched for a customizable glow.

All in all I find it hard to fault Sephora for quality or choice, unfortunately we still don’t have a Sephora in the UK, perhaps its better that we don’t, it makes holidays and business trips all the more exciting.

You can order online from the US website, shipping is £6. Please note this is not a sponsored post, I just like the brand.

Love, DSB x

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Sunday Supplement #40 – The Other Room

Last weekend I had some of my best friends come to visit, delighted to have visitors I set about sorting the spare room and ‘the other room’.  The spare room was not difficult, my parents stay with us a lot, quick sweep, change of linen, done.  To properly accommodate my friend her husband and two children would mean me tackling The Other Room.

The other room has been many things, an office studio before we built the studio shed.  A bedroom while decorating the spare room and latterly my walk in wardrobe, a study for writing and studio for taking most of my photographs.  It’s also a gatherer of dust, books, magazines, excess tut.

I cleaned and took out all of the tut.  I hung some pictures and made a gallery wall of sorts.  It’s a bit thrown together, I’ve just chucked up a couple of charity shop old paintings and some wedding pictures, I don’t know if it’s all those beautiful people smiling back at me but I like it, it’s kinda chinzy and cozy, I’ve dotted the room with candles and flowers and added a painting I’ve been working on, Grey Storm.

Hmmm, let’s say the painting is a work in progress…..and I need new cushions, but give it time.  In other news, our dire weather has had me reaching for the fake tan.  Skinny Tan sent me a box of lovely products.  As well as the tan mousse, they sent me exfoliator mitt, primer, applicator mitt and a detailed list of how to do it.  I now have a healthy glow, no streaks and importantly non-orange palms!

I’ve also this week felt that seasonal change in skin, not sure if its more walking the dog or exposure to the elements (I can’t really say the sun can I?).  So I’ve been reaching for a moisturizer to combat, tired, uneven lackluster skin.  This Bio-Radiance Face Cream from Christopher Courtney London really works.

As soon as you apply this authentic, ethical, luxurious cream you can feel it tingling and working.  It smells incredible and of course, it’s all natural and made in the UK.  If you don’t  know this company follow this link.

All photographs by me, have a fab week, I’m going to work on the other room.

Love DSB X

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Sunday Supplement #39


How are you all for a Sunday?

I had a couple of days off this week with Mr. B, no holiday, no time abroad or even an overnight hotel stay.  Instead, we opted for a staycation, that’s right a week at home in the Boston Abode, time to reset, recharge and do all the jobs we had been putting off for an age.

After the first exciting day of work free home togetherness, i.e. lie-ins, takeaways, and netflix.  We found the garden.  I pruned and weeded, deadheaded and fed the flowers.  Mr. B mowed, hoed and dug a trench for the new front fence and lavender patch, more on that in a later post.

Next, we looked to the studio shed, after running denisonboston and BostonandBoston for almost four years from the studio we had a lot to do.  One and a half days and four runs to the local tip later it’s once again become a cool haven at the bottom of the garden for working and writing.

I cut some flowers and greenery from the garden this morning.  Lilac and the last of the Cherry Blossom, Bluebells, and Muscari, and Ivy for a little deep green.  Then as the Instagram obsessive that I am, I took lots of photos of the arranged flowers.  Mr. B took some photos of me and Blue.

Blue is very photogenic and I don’t look bad for an old gal.  Although, I do have to give some credit here to the serum and moisturizer I’ve been using lately.

It’s a new anti-age cream for women.  Eucerin Elasticity + Filler helps to strengthen the skin’s structure by improving elasticity and plumping the appearance of deep wrinkles.

I’ve been using the Eucerin for four weeks now, it’s defo a good combo, I still have wrinkles but they look a whole lot better, plus I have pruned garden and a tidy studio shed, all set for a beaut of a Spring and Summer, hazy days of laughing and gardening and writing ahead!

Love DSB X

PS Please excuse the double denim, trainers and scraped back hair, natural and not always Insta ready!

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Sephora Haul

When Mr B announced he was going to New York with work for a week in January I felt a little green with envy.  Then I remembered one of the basic rules of marriage.  If the husband travels abroad with work thou shalt be rewarded upon his return with gifts.  I think the marriage certificate details this.

And then I remembered Sephora.  If you’re not au fait with Sephora then you soon will be. Sephora is the beauty megastore founded in France by Dominique Mandonnaud in 1970, with 3,200 stores in 33 countries.  Except the UK, that is until now.  Rumour has it that Sephora is coming to the UK, specifically our London Westfield stores.

Anyway back to my haul, Sephora is as ubiquitous on New York streets as Boots is in London. So I knew Mr B was likely to find one easily. I told him to look for Smashbox Primer and to buy Sephora Favourites, basically a beauty box full of current pics.

The black and white stripes of the Sephora packaging told me he had shopped well.  I’ve almost tried all of the individual products, too many to mention all so here’s my topbuys.

1/ Smashbox Iconic Photo Finish Foundation Primer. Amazing even better than you think!

2/ Sephora Favourites Give Me Some Nude Lip. You cant get enough of a good nude lip

3/  Sephora Favourites Beauty After Last Call The January pick me up package we all need.

You can buy online from the website however you need to spend a minimum of £75 and £6 postage, or you can wait patiently crossing all fingers and toes that a Sephora store will arrive in the UK soon….

Does a clap of excitment….Weeeeeee!

Love DSB x


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How I tackled Contouring

I know what your thinking, contouring has been around like forever now.  Slow on the uptake I loathed it at first, I’m going to give you my older perhaps wiser way that I tackled it.

So yes contouring has been around for some time and yes it passed me by at first.  Doing this and that in beauty I’ve been invited to a number of events to be contoured, the theory being different shades of makeup placed strategically on your face will define cheek bones, slim nose, forehead, basically give you a face lift with makeup.  Piles of it!

so I was all up for this revolutionary beauty thing.  What could go wrong?  The first time I tried it after sitting in the makeup chair for well over an hour I was shown the mirror. Wow! but not in a good way, I looked like I’d been mak up as a fancy dress tiger.  I had the stripes, light, dark medium shades, all I lacked was the black snout and whiskers.  Put me in a tiger onesie and I would have come first at any fancy dress competition.

After this experience I didn’t try it for a while then some beautician grabbed me unaware and a launch and told me I needed contour. This time it was a little better but with huge fat orange stripes down my face a looked like a 1970’s Farrah Fawcett with sunburn.

So I’ve been a little reticent to try it since.


Recently I was sent a Fab Contour Kit from Fab Brows .  It’s a neat little compact with a mirror wich comes with three shades of beautifully reflective powder and most importantly a contour brush.  They also include instructions and a diagram.  So each day I’ve been trying it little by little, somehow its worked its way into my beauty regime and now I love it.


I mean if you want stripes its not for you, this is subtle but used in the right way it works.  I found me some cheekbones and who knew all these years I didn’t need rhinoplasty just a few shades of beige and a brush.

So If like me you are terrified of contouring check this out.  Alternatively, it makes the sweetest Christmas gift.

Love DSB x

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Galvanic Spa

I read so much about how increasingly you don’t need to go under the knife to achieve youthful skin.  Award winning brand Nu Skin has developed a system called Galvanic Spa, which uses a galvanic current to push moisturizing products into the skin, for the optimum plumped look.  More recently they developed Age Loc.  A range of anti aging treatments which when used with the Galvanic Spa System give you that instant facelift.

My local beautician Kate who owns The Beauti Boss in Shoreham By Sea invited me to try their signature luxury Galvanic Spa Facial.




The facial starts with Nu Skin’s Polishing Peel, this removes impurities from under the skin.  Then The Galvanic Spa which uses a galvanic current to gently pushes the revolutionary ageLOC anti-aging products deep into your skin.  Effectively making the products work harder.  After this which is not even slightly tingly, just relaxing, it’s a mud mask for more moisture and a head shoulder and arm massage which just really blisses you out!

The whole facial takes an hour and a half, it’s well worth the time and leaves you feeling amazingly refreshed.



Galvanic Spa lifts, tightens and firms the skin, removes fine lines and wrinkles and softens moderate to deep lines and wrinkles.

It visibly reduces the signs of stress such as dullness, under-eye bags and shadows ( which I suffer from a lot!)

It removes impurities from deep within the skin, so your skin is clearer and blemishes reduced, this is certainly the case.

It increases blood and lymph circulation to help remove impurities, so your skin looks healthy and clear.

This really does do what it says; it’s an instant non-invasive facelift in less than 1 hour.

In an ideal world, Kate advises this twice a week, for more information on treatments go to or to shop the range of Nu Skin products click here.

Love DSB X


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Clarins – Honest Beauty

No trip to France would be complete without a beauty cache.

I know from previous trips that you can’t go wrong in a French Farmacie. Rows and rows of unpronounceable names, French bottles filled with potions and lotions to beautify.

My cousin stockpiles her favourite brands like Biotherm Micellular Water, when she travels to France and saves so much in doing so.

All week I poured over the counter, which brand, which product?  I procrastinated so much that Mr B lost his temper, “Why don’t you just buy it cheaper at the Eurotunnel Terminal?”.

Ah! this would be cheaper and a bigger selection including fragrances and makeup to make my choice.  Done.

As a Eurotunnel virgin, I didn’t know that the Calais Terminal holds a very small amount of Beauty brands.  Indeed the Duty-free shop only seemed to stock perfume.  Not such a good plan after all.  Hot and with one nerve left I went into beauty bloodhound mode, sniffing out one solitary makeup counter, Clarins.  Oh Clarins – Mon Amie!

I scooped up lipsticks in complimentary pinks, Mascara and to extend the lifespan of my tan a lovely bronzing compact.

Five minute holiday shopping done, with time left to spend my last Euro’s on a Croque Monsieur and a Cafe Au’ Lait.  Sometimes it’s better to stick to what you know a country does best.

Apologies for the Franglais and spellings!

Love DSB x

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The Best Cleansing Waters

I think it was a Couple of years ago that I read “wipes are for babies bottoms not for your face” from the fabulously straight talking beauty blogger Caroline Hirons.

I don’t think I’ve used a cleansing wipe since. Wipes leave a sticky residue on your face which I always end up washing off.

For many years I used only water on my face, however, I’ve found my ageing skin benefits a weekly deep cleanse and daily product clean.

Cleansing water or micellar water is now firmly in my daily routine although it’s taken me a little time to work out my favourites.

I’ve pictured my favourites here. All cleanse and wipe away makeup effectively. However, one comes out the overall winner. Bioderma – Crealine H2O – Solution micellaire demaquillante.  At around £15 a bottle, it is not the cheapest option (Amazon do 2 bottles for £17) or do as me and my cousin Claire, take a trip to France to stock up, the micellaire or miracle water (as I like to call it) is sold in every pharmacy for a fraction of the price!
Love DSB X

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Beauty Picks – February

Hey hello

It’s February and the first month of the year has passed.  No signs of Spring weather as yet, so far just cold wet grey days.  So I thought I’d share my skincare routine for Winter and how I’ve stepped it up. Take care of your skin in Winter and you will emerge in Spring all beautiful and new, like the first snowdrops.

So I’m switching between cleansers, my everyday cleanser is the Collagen Cleanser from SBC.  It’s beautifully soft and gentle yet I feel it adds a bit of a collagen plump.  My other specialist cleanser is more like a scrub, it’s actually a fine polish, Gazelli Tripple Youth Illuminating Perfecting Skin Polish to give it it’s full name.   I love the way it smooths and polishes skin without scrubbing too deep in the Winter months.

In terms of moisturiser, I’ve also gone for an ultra rich collagen option from Proto-Col.  It’s actually a face mask which can be used as a moisturiser, deliciously rich and smooth.


I use more facemasks in the Winter months and this year I’ve been switching between Delarom’s Clay Moisturising Mask and ARK’s Hydration Injection Masque, both add that little bit of extra moisture.

Finally, and this really is my absolute epitome of luxurious Winter evenings, a long hot bath with candles and Olverum bath oil and Nancy Lo Luxury Shaving Creme.

That’s me in my happy place, all pampered and glowing, what’s your Winter skincare routine?

Love DSB x


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Collagen and Chocolate


Back from the holidays with  a bump.  Ouch! Too much going out? Too much staying in and eating choc’s?  Too much Happy Christmas?

January is the time for taking stock, resetting the balance with New Years resolutions to detox and eat healthily.  It’s also a time when our skin suffers.  Deep into Winter now we have cold weather outdoors, central heating indoors not to mention the damage Christmas has done.

Fear not, help is at hand in the form of a couple of unsuspecting friends, namely collagen and chocolate.

 When Esthechoc contacted me to say I should eat chocolate every day for great skin, I was amazed.  Yup, it’s true. Cambridge Chocolate Technology has spent ten years developing Esthechoc, chocolate, clinically proven to improve your skin, er hello? whats not to like here? Please check out their website, deliciously surprising.

Next up, Works With Water have launched a Beautify Skin Supplement.  It’s a natural skin food supplement jelly treats to improve your skin.  help: beautify skin is formulated with natural ingredients proven to deliver tangible anti-ageing and skin regenerating benefits.  Contains PravenAGE, a proprietary formula incorporating Hydrolysed Marine Collagen, Resveratrol, Aloe Vera and CoEnzyme Q10 to help nourish your skin from the inside.

Along a similar theme Proto-Col provide aCollagen capsule, if you didn’t know, Collagen is a natural protein that is made up of amino acids – the natural building blocks of our skin. Collagen is found throughout the body – in skin, hair, teeth, muscle, tendon and bone and it helps hold us together.  As we get older we don’t produce nearly as much Collagen, so taking a supplement really helps.

Proto-Col also make a Collagen Facemask, A supremely rich and luxurious moisturising facial treatment containing plant-derived collagen to quench thirsty skin. Ideal for hydrating, and plumping skin.  Ingeniously this product can be used as a facemask or moisturiser.

Finally Organic White Chocolate Revitalising Cream from Zuzka.  This velvety soft light textured cream provides daily moisture & nourishment, increasing the skins elasticity & tone. White chocolate is packed full of antioxidants, vitamins & minerals,  organic orange & frankincense essential oils make this an ultimate revitalising product.

I started with my new Chocolate and Collagen routine over Christmas and already I’ve noticed a difference with visibly less wrinkles.  I think Collagen will remain in my diary for some time to come and I know the Chocolate will stay.  Well if its helping with my wellbeing its a must!

Love DSB X



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Winter Skin from SBC

Hello December,

It feels extraordinarily mild and warm outside for the start of the Winter months, but dear December your not fooling me!  I know if I don’t take the necessary precautions by the end of February my face will like a dried-up walnut.  So I have a Winter skincare plan.  More skincare, more often.

Yep, that’s essentially it!  More scrubbing more cleansing, more moisturising and more, richer, thicker Winter type of products.

I don’t have dry skin all year around, but what with the indoor heating, and the cold wind outside I get a couple of little dry spots not to mention my weepy eyes and drippy wet nose. (Ugh!)



As a lover of SBC product for Face and Body, I’ve been using the Vitamin ACE Collection which features the latest technology in advanced delivery systems, Oxysomes. Moisture-boosting Vitamin A, brightening Vitamin C and refining Vitamin E.

The ABC shower Gel and Body Gel are brilliant for freshening up and revitalising skin.  Then I go to the ABC Hydra Gel Face Serum followed by the ABC Day & Night Cream which is brilliantly thick and perfect for Winter cold spells.

SBC Gels are available from the website and QVC.

Love DSB x


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Tabitha James Kraan – Organic Haircare

I’ve recently had the pleasure of trying Tabitha James kraan’s collection of organic haircare solutions, how wonderful it feels to use organic, British Made Haircare.

TJK is founded on three main principles,

1/ Correct Cleansing – TJK organic hair cleansers gently cleanse the hair using soapbark, which creates a natural soap to clean without stripping the natural oils as traditional detergent based shampoos do. By cleansing this way the scalp’s natural equilibrium is reached and excess oil production is calmed, by balancing over time.

2/ Oil Balancing – Hair oil will strengthen and build up long-term protection of the hair strands.  Tabitha has developed a unique organic hair oil blend, able to absorb into and seal the hair shaft, providing strength and protection, without weighing the hair down.

3/ Natural Ingredients – By sourcing the purest natural ingredients TJK can produce the highest quality hair care that delivers results by working in harmony with the hair and scalp. Decades of working with hair has taught TJK that hair always performs best when it is treated with pure and natural ingredients.


I love that these products are made in the UK, I love the way they are packaged and the way they smell, but most of all I love the way my hair feels, stronger, softer, cleaner altogether more luxurious,

For a love affair with your hair,

Love DSB x

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Skin Doctors

Do you ever have days when you look in the mirror and all you see are wrinkles?

My problem area is around my eyes, seems each time I look in the mirror another wrinkle appears.

Praise be then to Skin Doctors, the brand that provides a face lift from a bottle.


I tried Instant Eyelift and Instant Facelift, you pop them on before your makeup and it sort of works as sellotape over your skin, filling up the wrinkles and smoothing away lines.

The eyelift and facelift dry to hold the skin taut, it also lasts for up to eight hours.  I think it’s perfect for a special occasion or the Christmas party season.

I’m going to try it for the remainder of the week, follow me on Social Media to see how I get along.

Skin Doctors Eyelift and Facelift is available from their website or from Amazon


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Nanogen – Science of Thicker Hair


Bad hair day?  How many mornings have you woke to find your hair just would not perform in its usual way?  Many women think about their hair – a lot.  But have you ever thought of hair loss?

Women of any age can suffer hair loss or thinning hair, this can be age related or due to medication or stress or just your genes.

Nanogen are specialists in what they call the science of hair.  They asked me if I’d like to trial some products and hey, which women doesn’t want thicker hair?  So I gave them a whirl  in the wash!

First off I tried Thickening Treatment Shampoo for Women and then Thickening Treatment Conditioner for Women, both smell of fresh berries with a good texture, they claim to thicken from the first wash!

Out of the shower, I then used Hair Growth Factor Treatment Serum Now this is the magic stuff.  First, of all it’s clinically tested and comes in a glass bottle with a pipette (how I love a pipette!) you apply it directly to your scalp and massage in. This add’s to the natural hair growth cycle and stimulates further growth.

Then I used Root Boost Thickening Spray, you can use this every day, I’ve been using it only when I wash my hair and more importantly blow dry.  The spray contains Lifting Polymers, Natural Sea Salt and a thickening combination of Caffeine and Niacinamide. Peptides to repair cuticles and heat activated Protein to protect against damage from blow drying.

 I’ve been using this combo for a couple of weeks now and I can honestly see and feel such a difference.  In fairnes, I don’t think the serum will have had that much time to see the results of new hair growth however the shampoo, conditioner and spray have left my hair bigger and bouncier, fuller and thicker.

People have even commented that my hair looks thicker, (this hardly ever happens to me).  I have other hair products in my bathroom cabinet to try at the moment, but I can’t stop using these.

Nanogen also make Hair Thickening Fibres which bind to your hair to make hair look thicker, I must admit I wanted to go through the hair repair stages first so I’ve not tried this product yet.

I’m interested to see how my hair has repaired when it comes through the full cycle.  Until then take a look for yourself.

Love DSB x