Monday, 18 March 2019

*The Legwear Co. - Sustainable Hosiery Subscription

eco friendly tights the legwear co hosiery subscription box


These days, almost anything you can think of can be boxed up, shipped out and delivered to your door as a regular subscription service. I love a good subscription box. I love the feelings you get when the email comes through to tell you that your next box is on its way, finding it on your doorstep. Who doesn’t love a good unboxing? Problem is, as much as I love my subscriptions, I always find that a few bits and bobs, especially with beauty boxes end up going unused. I’m looking for a subscription that gives me something I need on a regular basis that doesn’t come with the guilt of waste. 

Introducing The Legwear Co. A sustainable hosiery subscription service that has been over 6 years in the making! The guys over at Legwear Co looked at the current state of the throw away fashion industry, an estimated 250,000,000kgs of tights and hosiery are currently residing in landfills across the UK - tights are the single use plastic of the fashion world. 

eco friendly tights the legwear co hosiery subscription box

Just think about that for a minute. I’m someone who wears tights Being the skater dress wearing girl I am, I go through tights like there’s no tomorrow. I am notorious for buying tights cheaply and in bulk. You will forever find me braving the queues in Primark over the weekend, 2 multipacks clutched in my hands. Thats 6 pairs of tights - you can almost hear the nylon ripping in the toes as we speak - the elastic over stretching, the legs shrinking in the wash. Oh the joys of tights

Yes Mum, I know how to use my washing machine. And yes, I’ve kept my toe nails trimmed and filed - unruly talons are not the reason for having to replace them constantly. They’re just cheap and sh*t. It is for this very reason, for the amount of pairs I go through on a regular basis that I keep buying the crappy cheap ones - because surely this is the woe of all tight wearing humans? 

It actually makes me feel sick to think of how many pairs of tights I’ve sent to landfill without a second thought. How many are just sitting there, not rotting away, not disintegrating, not being turned into something more useful and sustainable

eco friendly tights the legwear co hosiery subscription box

This is where The Legwear Co wants to change things. Not only do they want to provide us with quality tights, that don’t rip, run, ladder, stretch, shrink, fall down Nora Batty style around our ankles. They want to give us something that looks fresh out of the packet every.single.wear

How the heck are they going to achieve that? What kind of advertising magic is this? For over 6 years now, they’ve been developing a method to actually recycle and reuse our old, holey, over-stretched tights. They turn our old unloved tights into some, well, something pretty yarn special (sorrynotsorry).

Every 3 months you will receive 3 specially curated pairs of tights. Varying in denier, and style, not only will you have 3 very wearable pairs of tights - but if there are any problems, holes, ladders or sizing issues they give you 28 days in which to really put them through their paces or send them back for replacements, size changes or refunds. You can even order a complimentary pair (you just cover the p&p) to check if the size/style is for you.  Did I believe even one pair would last 28 days of some serious wearing? After years of battling with my nylons, I had my doubts. 

In my first box, I received 3 pairs of black tights; 50 denier, 60 denier support, and 120 denier support. I’ve always been an 80 denier girl whatever the weather but I’ve got to say, the 50 and 60 shocked me. The 50 are nowhere near as sheer as the 50 denier from Primark but the 60….oh the 60 denier are like the tights of dreams.

eco friendly tights the legwear co hosiery subscription box

The 60 denier support tights have so much support in them it felt like I was wearing a corset under my dress - yes, they come up that high on me! There is so much structure, fitting and support in them that it gives my dresses the smoothest silhouette. They don’t roll anywhere from the second they’re put on to the second they come off. They don’t roll down across my stomach, the legs don’t gather around my knees or ankles. Out of all 3 pairs, they are the perfect fit.  Straight out of the box, they ticked all the boxes - but did they last??

Over the last 4 weeks, I’ve worn them about 10+ times, that’s a lot of rapid washing and wearing. I am shook. Shook. The 60 Denier Support tights still fit like the day they came out of the box. There’s no stretching, no shrinking, no pulled threads or impending ladders and the toe areas are very much intact. Bare in mind I walk to work, spend 8 1/2 hours on my feet, then walk home! I was honestly expecting even just a little stretch, especially in the support structure, but they’re still like wearing a very snug body glove! 

Are tights and hosiery the single use plastic of the fashion world? Can eco friendly recycled fashion tights be the answer to STOPPING tights ending up in the landfill?

The Legwear Co subscription service sends out 3 pairs of tights every 3 months for £34.99 a box (not inc. p&p). £35 for 3 pairs of tights is expensive for a girl trying to buy a house and pay for a wedding at the same time but, when I break down the cost of all the packs of tights I buy from Primark, the little wear I get from them and the landfill space they end up residing in, well. The Legwear Co tights are much more appealing! Given how well these first 3 pairs have lasted, I wouldn’t hesitate in getting future boxes and building a hosiery collection that will last

How many pairs of tights do you think you go through on average?

Until next time, 

*Huge thanks to The Legwear Co for sending me out my first subscription box. All thoughts, opinions and my love for those 60 denier bad boys are 100% my own. For more information please see my disclaimer policy.

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing

Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing review for dry oily combination skin

Saturday evening is something pretty special around here. Saturday evening is the night I bring out the Northern Soap Cleanser. An activated charcoal cleanser, this doesn’t just clean the surface of the skin, but it gets right in there, deep in the layers, drawing out impurities washing them away. This could be the holy grail of deep cleaning cleansers. 

What is activated charcoal?

Activated charcoal is charcoal that has been heated up. As it heats, it creates little pockets - these are what draw out and trap the impurities and toxins from your skin. This is why the likes of Origins Clear Improvement face mask are so successful. The activated charcoal binds to the grime and dirt. Our bodies cannot absorb charcoal (hence why it’s used to treat overdoses and some poisonings). So, the charcoal just sits there on our skin, gathering up and trapping the nasties - and taking them all away as it’s removed. As charcoal cannot be absorbed into the skin, it stops any of the toxins it has trapped being further absorbed into the skin too. This is a great preventative treatment to stop the spread of oil and dirt across the skin, resulting in fewer blocked pores, thus fewer breakouts!

Siberian Skincare

The Siberian climate is one of extremes from intense heat to deadly drops in temperature. Natura Siberica have been studying Northern Nenec, Selkup and Khanty tribes people, along with their ancient recipes and concoctions made from locally sourced minerals and materials. The Northern Soap Cleanser is enriched with a mixture of these harvested, antioxidant packed wild berries and herbs giving it not only skin cleansing properties, but skin nourishing, healing and moisturising benefits too. 

But is this all a load of sales spiel? Are we just being bludgeoned into submission by the beauty industry, baffling us with science and mystical ingredients?

Northern Soap Facial Cleanser Ingredients

I took a quick look at some of these activated, Siberian ingredients to see if there was anything all that special about them. 

Siberian Cedar Oil - Jam packed with Vitamin E, and we all know how vital that is when it comes to our skin. Nourishing, protecting, possible a barrier against UV damage. We love us some Vitamin E.

Northern Cloudberry Extract - (I mean come on, that name?! Love it!) Vitamin C, Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, the creates an amazing barrier across the skin that protects it from free-radical and environmental damage - now this would come in handy in the Siberian climate!

Sakhalin Raspberry Seed Oil - antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, this is great for reducing redness and calming breakouts.

From where I’m standing, I’m seeing all of the above benefits in my own skin after using the Northern Soap Cleanser for over 3 months now!

Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing review for dry oily combination skin

How to use Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing

Natura Siberica advices using the cleanser no more than twice a week, but I found that to be a little too drying for my skin - however in the warmer months, I can see a twice weekly cleanse on the cards. The cleanser comes with it’s own sponge, so I start by soaking that in hot water (not boiling) until it becomes soft and pliable. 

Once the sponge is soft, I wring it out, not too much just so it isn’t dripping, then swirl it around the product. The cleanser itself is a solid cleanser. Wiping the sponge around, it foams slightly, grey in colour. After a couple of swirls, I start to apply it in circular motions to a dry face. 

Make sure you have removed all make-up before applying this cleanser. If you don’t all the cleanser will do is remove the make-up, not oil, grime and impurities in the skin, and I wouldn’t advise you go in twice with this cleanser as it can be pretty harsh.

The cleanser itself dries like a clay mask very quickly. I actually don’t mind this, and after applying all over the skin, I will let it sit for a minute or two like a face mask, as I rinse the sponge and change fill the sink with a little water. Using the wet sponge, I swipe across my face to remove the cleanser, finally rinsing with a little warm water, the splashing my face with cold water before patting dry.

My skin instantly looks fresher, brighter and tighter and it has a real squeaky clean feel to it. Like I said, it can be pretty drying, so once a week is enough for me to reap the benefits without drying out my skin too much! I actually love that I only use this once a week right now as it’s always nice to change up the skincare ritual and it feels like a real treat. I also think my skin actually reacts better to using products more sparingly, it seems to absorb the benefits ten times better than with products I use everyday twice a day.

I can’t go before I talk about the scent because for me, damn, just thinking about it puts a smile on my face. I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love the scent of almonds. That intense, cherry bakewell scent. Which is exactly what the Northern Soap Cleanser smells like. I don’t know, when a product smells really good, that just adds to the joy of using it for me!

Northern Soap for Deep Facial Cleansing review for dry oily combination skin

Are you a sucker for the science and scents behind a product too?

Until next time, 

Monday, 11 March 2019

*Sapporo Teppanyaki - Liverpool

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review


Liverpools Sapporo Teppanyaki restaurant, located up on Duke Street, it’s not only a feast for the foodies amongst us but a dinner with a show! Perfect for group bookings, and family celebrations, I wondered how it would work as a date night venue with the Mr. Can you really get date night vibes whilst supping your noodles alongside strangers? Of course, we had to find out!

Sapporo is a gorgeous venue, with a large bar area, and even larger dining area. The dining area is made up of several large tabels surrounding hot plates. We dined early on a Sunday afternoon so it’s wasn’t too busy, but I’ve been past on Friday and Saturday evenings and it’s always booming with birthday celebrations and large groups. I’d say making a reservation is a must. Large groups are seated together, smaller groups are seated with each other. We were sat with another duo and a family of 4. 

Dining with strangers is a funny thing. I always imagined it will be awkward, that you’ll talk quietly or not at all. Or maybe you’ll end up making new friends? If it’s something you’re worried about don’t be! I’ve dined like this a few times now and just know that everyone sitting at the table is happy to go about their own business! Some people are happy to strike up a conversation with others, some are happy to just chat amongst themselves - so it won’t be as awkward or uncomfortable as you might imagine! We ended up having a laugh with our fellow diners thanks to the chef getting everyone involved in the show every now and then!

Sapporo has a pretty extensive menu, and not everything is cooked on the hot plate teppanyaki style. If you want to see your food being cooked, go for the teppenyaki option. Food will be served up as it’s cooked and the idea is you eat it as soon as its popped on your plate.

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

For starters, we went with the vegetarian spring rolls (£5.50) and asked for some chilli sauce on the side. The spring rolls were delicious, the vegetables had been cooked in a peanut oil or sauce, so had a lovely, strong, satay style flavour to them. The chilli sauce was thick and not spicy at all but full of flavour. I could have devoured the whole lot to myself!

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

Then, the mains. We both went with a teppanyaki dish. All teppanyaki dishes come with potatoes, noodles and egg fried rice. I went for the seafood combination (£23), salmon fillet, seabass, king prawns and scallops. The Mr went for the land and sea (£40), beef fillet with half a lobster. Remember how I said you eat as the food is served up? The potatoes came first, but we waited as I didn’t just want to eat plain potatoes - then the chef said we should be eating them whilst he continued to cook. So we did. The noodles came next with mixed veg, and just as I finished those, the eggs fried rice was served up. I’d pretty much finished all of the accompaniments before the mains were served up. This to me was a strange way of eating, but everything tasted really good and as soon as you finished one, the next was served.

When it comes to the mains, my seafood combination was really good. The scallops were cooked well, king prawns have never been my favourite but these tasted good and fresh. The salmon was delicious, I could have just eaten a plate of that alone! The seabass was really nice but it was missing a real crisp on the skin. The Mr’s lobster was really good. I’m not a huge lobster fan but that I could have gone to town on! It was cooked in so so much garlic which is never a bad thing in my opinion! Though I didn’t try it, the beef fillet was cooked perfectly, just the right level of medium rare that it just seemed to melt! He cleaned the plate before I could even grab a picture!

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

I couldn’t leave without having dessert so went for the chocolate spring rolls (£7). One was filled with milk chocolate, the other with white chocolate, with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side! I thought I’d be disappointed, it all looked so small but honestly, I couldn’t eat another bite! The chocolate filled spring rolls were very sweet but oh so moorish! It was just the right amount.

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

Throughout the whole experience, I was sipping on the most mouth watering cocktail, the sapporo delight (£8.50), sake, rose liqueur and chocolate bitters - guys, GUYS!!! It was like drinking turkish delight!! I couldn’t have been happier! 

Our chef was a good laugh, he put on a brilliant show that had everyone laughing, trying to catch potatoes, dodging flying fried egg and checking our eyebrows were still attached after some impressive flame throwing! It was a fabulous way to spend a Sunday afternoon and we both came out smiling and with very full stomachs! 

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

Whether its a family celebration or a date night for two. Catching up with friends or a works do, Sapporo is one worth putting on your to-dine-at list! From flames to flavours, you don’t be disappointed!

Dining in Liverpool - Sapporo Teppanyaki fine dining Japanese cuisine dinner show review

Have you ever had a teppanyaki dining experience?

Until next time, 

Our meal at Sapporo Teppanyaki restaurant was gifted by Sapporo. All thoughts, views, opinions and love of that cocktail are my own. For more information please see my disclaimer policy.