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Friday 30 October 2015

October Favourites

It's almost the end of the month so I thought it was good timing for a favourites post. I don't have many this month; mainly due to being away and a lot of my favourites this month are the same as last month! Also, I currently have lower back spasms, so these photos are brought to you courtesy of diazepam! haha

Starting with this one:

Lush solid perfume in Honey I Washed the Kids
This was limited edition and I believe it's all gone now, in fact it was gone in about 2 hours after it went on sale, because it was a 'kitchen' item. It was totally by chance that I found out they were going to sell this briefly but I had to buy it. This used to be my favourite Lush fragrance and I was really sad when they discontinued it because the soap with the same fragrance isn't vegan.

I lovvvve the smell of this perfume. It doesn't last as long as the other lush solid perfumes do, maybe because it's a pot, not a stick, so you probably don't actually put as much on. But it's teeny so it's perfect for throwing in your bag for a touch up.


B. Replenishing Facial Oil
I bought this a while ago and have recently started using it more often and have been loving it. It smells of roses and it's great for dry skin. I generally use a serum for my morning moisturiser, as I tend to do my makeup straight after moisturising. This though is great for nighttime. I put about 3 drops, that's all you need, onto my fingertips and massage it into clean skin. When I wake up, it's all sunk in and my skin feels really nice. I get really dry skin, especially at this time of year and this definitely helps.

Autograph Lipstick in Parfait Pink
I have had this lipstick in my collection for AGES but I recently dug it out for a bridal makeup trial I did a while ago, thinking it would be the perfect colour for the bride to be's complexion (it was!). Anyway I remembered how much I love it. Perfect nude peachy pink, everyday colour.  Unfortunately, I don't think they make this colour anymore, which is a real shame; but I do love the M&S lipsticks. (For Autograph's vegan options, take a look at my recent post.)

It's a bit lighter on the lips, in real life.

Superdrug Micellar Cleansing Wipes
Firstly I should say I never use wipes on my face and don't recommend them. But I do like them for cleaning up and for taking off swatches when I'm taking photos. They take most makeup off in one swipe and they don't smell obnoxious either. I haven't tried them on my face because as I said, I'm not a fan of wipes for the face and the last time I tried Micellar water, it broke me out. But if you like wipes, give them a go.

GOSH Velvet Touch Lipliner in Pink Pleasure
Such a pretty vibrant pink. I love these liners (both the eye and lip liners); they are really creamy but also really long lasting. This looks great alone, or with a gloss or lipstick over the top to mute it a bit.

Sorry it's a bit of a crap swatch, to see it on me, check out my last FOTD post.

B. Stunning Vibrant Eye Shimmers
I have a few of these, my favourite one is Copper and I've been using that a lot lately, but could I find the bugger to photograph it? No. No I could not. So here's a couple of others I have.

This shade is called Rockstar and it's such a beautiful silvery taupe. It's seriously gorgeous. I use it all over the lid with a nice warm brown in the crease and it makes a lovely and really quick smokey eye! These set and once they set, they don't budge. Love them. I like to apply them with my next favourite....

Crown Infinity Blending Fluff Brush
I ordered this brush for a post I'm working on and I love it. In shape and size, it's very similar to the MAC 217 which is neither cruelty free or vegan. Synthetic brushes are the best thing for cream shadow, so this brush is great for applying the cream shadows I mentioned above. You can blend with it and pack colour on too. Plus it washes up really well. Crown Brushes are awesome, cheap and have lots of vegan options.

My last favourite are these brilliant earrings from Sour Cherry. I saw them and had to have them, because Moss is one of the greatest characters ever. Ever. 

Look at these motherflipping things, they are ruddy awesome. Simon thinks they look tacky; personally that makes them ever better in my book! haha

So that is it for this month.

I have decided that in November, I'm going to Instagram a picture of my lipstick/lip product every day and make sure that it's different every day. So if you want to see 30 days of vegan lip products, follow me on Instagram. Although if you don't have Instagram, don't worry; I'll be recapping each week's lips of the day on here and also my Facebook page.

Also, if you have Instagram and want to join in (you don't have to do it every day, but if you are rocking an ace colour one day and want to document it) just hashtag it #alienontoast or #monthofveganlips so I can see it!


Tuesday 27 October 2015

FOTD - 1 Year Anniversary

I was making myself fancy for our 1 year anniversary dinner in New York, so I took some pics and thought I'd do a face of the day post, to tell you what I wore.

I kept it pretty simple to save time and to not stress me out! :)

Hourglass Veil Foundation - shade Porcelain
Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer - shade Vanilla
Revolution Radiant Lights Powder - shade Breathe (as bronzer)
B. Blush - Shade Candy Cane
The Balm - Mary-Lou Manizer

Tanya Burr Galaxy Eyeshadow Palette
Makeup Geek Gel Liner - shade Immortal
Eyeko Magic Brow Booster - shade Light to Medium
Eyeko Brow Gel
Barry M Lash Vegas Fibres Mascara

GOSH Velvet Touch Lipliner - shade Pink Pleasure
OCC Stained Gloss - shade Aurora

Eyeball closeup!

I tried to take an outfit selfie but our bathroom mirror wasn't full length (this was before I discovered the full length one on the back of the door - doh!!)

Sal xXx

Sunday 25 October 2015

New York - The Food Post!

Hello everyone!

You might have already seen my makeup post the other day, but if not, I got back from New York on Wednesday morning, after the most amazing trip. Simon* and I were celebrating our 1 year anniversary (*that's "Mr A", I figure I should probably just tell you his name now!)

OK strap in folks, this post is a long one!

We started off at Heathrow Airport. We had booked the airport lounge but as I wasn't sure if I'd be able to eat in there, I stopped in Pret first and grabbed a sneaky sandwich. Which came in handy as pretty much all I could eat in the lounge was crackers and fruit.

This sandwich was pretty good and it made a nice change to get a pre-packed sandwich that wasn't hummus. It was avocado and red pepper tapenade I think. I also nabbed one of the free fizzy drinks from the lounge and a glass (or 2) of prosecco.

We flew out with Virgin, which I was pretty excited about, as everyone always raves about them. Gotta say I was underwhelmed! We flew economy and the seats were SO cramped that even 5"2' me felt shoved up against the seat in front. You can only imagine how 6"3' Simon felt!! Also, his screen wasn't working so he had to watch films off an iPad, which was ok but as it was on his tray table, it mean a crooked neck! Really I think they should have offered to move or upgrade us but nothing was forthcoming.

Anyway onto the food. For airplane food, it wasn't actually bad. I got gnocchi with a spicy sauce and veggies on it. I like gnocchi, so I was happy. The bread was ok too and they even gave me a little pack of margarine that had the vegan society logo on. I didn't eat the salad, it was just leaves and no dressing. The fruit salad also had devil fruit in it (kiwi) so I picked around it. When will companies figure out something vegan that ISN'T fruit salad for pudding? GAH.

Tasted better than it looks, I swear!

As it's a 7 hour flight, you get fed twice. Second meal was a snack box that had a Nakd bar (yum!) and a little pack of crisps and a mint, which was random.

And a wrap that had guacamole and veggies in.

More avocado, although it was tricky to actually FIND the avo in there, but it was there. Just not very much of it. Tasted ok though.

And then we were in NYC! Our hotel was a brilliant location, the hotel was on 31st & 7th Avenue, which is just over the road pretty much from Madison Square Garden. Loads of stuff to do within walking distance and NY is really easy to navigate by foot anyway because of the grid system.

The first vegan snacks Simon picked up (while I was makeup shopping) was Nutter Butters and Twizzlers!

We left England at 9am UK time and arrived in New York around 11.30 am US time. So we were 5 hours ahead and we decided to try and stay awake as long as possible to make sure we weren't wide awake at 3am.

We chilled in our room for a bit and then decided to get takeout. A bit of Happy Cowing revealed a little place called V Life (on 7th Avenue, between 29th & 30th Street) was just a few mins walk from our hotel. Happily for Simon, there was a Five Guys burger place opposite, so that was him happy too.

V Life is a really cute little place. It's teeny, it only has about 3 tables in there but they do loads of sandwiches, wraps, cakes and brown rice bowls. The staff are really friendly too and it was reasonably priced. If you're in that area ever, I'd definitely recommend you check it out!

I grabbed a Po' Boy sandwich, mainly out of sheer curiosity. Look at the size of it!!

Then i freaked out a bit about how lifelike the fake shrimp were! I used to hate the texture of prawns when I still ate meat and these were frighteningly similar to what I remember. However, they were great. The whole sandwich was. But we got fries to share too, so I could only eat half of it! (Don't worry, I ate the rest the next day.)

I also picked us up dessert. We got a peanut butter bomb which was the best dessert we ate out there. Fudgy chocolate cake, with smooth fluffy peanut butter mousse on top, coated in chocolate! ARGH, so great.

I also grabbed us a white chocolate pretzel brownie, which we ate for breakfast the next day. It also had some of that peanut butter mousse on top of the brownie and the pretzel was on top. It was awesome.

I also got a coconut bubble tea, as I love bubble tea. I didn't love this though and kind of wished I'd gone for a fruity one, as this was WAY too sweet for me.

The next morning for breakfast, we decided on a bagel. Happily, a few minutes walk from our hotel was the Bagel Maven Cafe (I can't find a website for them but they're on 7th Avenue as well, very near to our hotel on 31st Street and 7th avenue). They had an array of bagels and non-vegan breakfast foods, but they also had vegan cream cheese (plain and scallion versions). So I got a sesame bagel and scallion cream cheese.

They put absolutely tonnes on, it was awesome!

Later that day, after some sight-seeing, we wondered into Times Square. I got super excited about Sephora....

And Simon went for a walk so that he didn't have to suffer through makeup shopping. Whilst he was gone, he discovered an Empanada Stand that had a vegan option! Winner.

It was delicious, the coconut milk made it really creamy and it wasn't too spicy. I only wish it was a bit bigger haha.

Then I got chased by the stay puft marshmallow man! AHHHH

Erm yeah, moving on.

Saturday night was mine and Simon's 1 year anniversary. We went for a lovely fancy dinner at Blossom Chelsea, which I booked months ago. It was about a 20-25 minute walk from our hotel. Unfortunately I don't have pictures of the food as it was just way too dark in there to take them.

Here's a link to the menu though. I had the Seitan in Port Wine Sauce, which weirdly doesn't seem to be on the online menu and I don't think it was a special! The mash won me over. It was brilliant; the sauce was rich and delicious, the seitan was a great texture and the mash was perfect.

Simon had the Rigatoni in Porcini Cream. Aside from it having broccoli in, which he doesn't like/can't eat, he loved it. I had a taste and it was really delicious! We also got a side of truffle mash which I would have happily rolled around it - so tasty.

After our romantic dinner, we had planned to go up to the top of the Empire State Building, to see the view at night (well the 86th floor Observation Deck anyway).

Here's the view...

About 10 seconds after I took that picture, Simon pulled out a ring and asked me to marry him! I just about managed to splutter yes before bursting into tears!

We took a couple of (terrible) selfies, before having to go inside as it was SO freezing and windy up there.

After leaving the Empire State building, we ran into the Duane Reade drugs next door, as we had seen peanut chews in there earlier in the day. We grabbed a bag and some toffee apple twizzlers* for later snacks. (*so yummy!)

After that we jumped in a cab to the hotel to call our families, who were waiting up as they knew the call was coming! At 3am the nutters.

I was the only one with absolutely no clue this was going to happen! Simon had been planning it since June and had sworn everyone to secrecy.

The next morning, we headed off to find Simon his dreamt of New York Diner breakfast. It was a tiny place with counter space only and had a line out the door so we decided to give it a miss (we did end up going back there though on our last morning). However, we then spotted next door a little place called the Perpetuum Cafe that had a sign saying they also sold vegan food! So we went in.

The guy saw my hat and said that it was cute and if I ordered a latte, he'd draw it for me! haha. So here's the latte:

and here is said hat!

I can't find a website for these guys but they're located next to Johny's Luncheonette (the place we were originally looking for) on W. 25th Street between 6th & 7th avenues.

That night, we were exhausted after a day of sightseeing and freezing our arses off on the Liberty Ferry / Grey Line Bus. So we got take out. Again, back to V Life for me, Burgers for Simon.

This time, I went for Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich. There was a choice of mild or spicy sauce, I went spicy. It was perfect. My picture doesn't do it justice but this one was my favourite of the 3 (yep there's another to come!) sandwiches that I got at this place.

I also grabbed us a brownie to share, which we actually didn't eat until we got home and it was still amazing!

The next morning, we had a quick look in Whole Foods and I bought a piece of underwhelming carrot cake. I thought there'd be WAY more vegan baked goods, but there were about 3!

For Monday's breakfast, we stopped Fresh & Co. They have a bunch of these in Manhattan and they're supposed to be a bit of a healthier option for fast food. I got the Pueblo Vegan Grilled Cheese Sandwich, which is a tonne of avocado, black bean/sweetcorn salsa and daiya cheese. It was pretty good, I liked the bread. They do quite a few vegan options (MENU). Simon was underwhelmed with his omelet though and the staff were SO miserable. Every one of them. So we decided not to bother going back there.

After breakfast we decided to hop on the subway to the Museum of Natural History. After a walk around, we took a stroll across Central Park to go to The Metropolitan Museum of Art (the Met). It was the most beautiful day and it was fun to walk through the park and see some squirrels.

One of my favourite things we saw was this sculpture of Alice in Wonderland. My favourite cartoon as a kid!

After the Met, we did some more Happy Cowin' and discovered that Candle Cafe (East Side) was not too far away, it was a bit of a walk but doable. I was really excited to try this place, as it was originally where I suggested for our anniversary dinner, before I discovered Blossom was closer. (MENU)

We started off with some sodas. Simon got Kola, I got ginger.

I picked a pasta dish off the specials menu. It had spinach, peas, carrots and mushrooms in a cashew cream sauce. It was lovely. I thought the carrots were a bit of an odd addition, that I probably would leave out, but they were still good.

We got a side of truffle fries to share - OMG these were so good!

Simon got the Avocado BLT (tempeh) and sweet potato fries. It was really tasty.

For dessert I picked the peanut butter/chocolate cake. It was insanely dense and fudgy. It was amazing, but too rich for me to finish it all!

Simon got carrot cake and I tried a bit. It was amazing. The frosting was completely perfect!

On our last night in NY, I was still wanting proper NY pizza! So we hopped on the subway again and went off to Brooklyn to find Vinnie's Pizzeria (the Williamsburg location), which was a way shorter journey than I thought it'd be.

I gotta say it looked like a bit of a dive, but I thought the inside was really cute.

I knew that they have vegan options, this was the vegan special of the day I believe.

I really liked the decor, especially these (click on the pic to see a bigger version, hopefully you can read some of them).

And the Ninja Turtles stuff!

I especially loved this one

Here's a pic of the menu

And the inside

Vegan appetisers too, peeps!

SO excited for pizza!

Here's what I chose, the Mac's Reprise: Macaroni, Ground 'beef' cheese and Frank's Hot Sauce. This pizza was AH-MAY-ZING! Brilliant crust, great toppings and HUGE.

So huge, I only managed half and that was a struggle.

Simon had a non-vegan pizza so I didn't take a pic but he said it's the best pizza he's ever had and that all other pizza is now ruined for him. He said the mozzarella they used was amazing and I think even if he hadn't liked New York, he'd be willing to go back with me just to make a trip to Vinnie's haha.

After that, jumped back on the subway all the way back to Rockerfeller Plaza and took a trip up to the 'Top of the Rock'. This view is even better than the Empire State and way less windy too. And look, there's the Empire State Building... I wanted a picture of it looking all pretty as that's where we got engaged!

Tuesday was the day we went home :(  We went back to Johny's Luncheonette so Simon could get him NY diner breakfast, which he said was brilliant. I had some home fries in the diner and then I grabbed a bagel with scallion cream cheese on from Bagel Maven again. We ate that in our hotel before going out to get all our gifts to take home for people.

For lunch, we grabbed one last takeout from my fave place - V Life. I got the Paradise Protein. She asked me which sauce I wanted and I didn't really hear properly and didn't get any. Durr, either way it was still good, dunked in a bit of ketchup. It had mock chicken and beef or rib style pieces in and what I think is Daiya cheese. I love their bread too.

We also shared some Cajun fries from Five Guys, as Simon got a last burger from there.

Then it was time to leave. We paid a bit extra to get comfort plus seats on our Delta Flight, with emergency exit seats for extra legroom. So glad we did as it was WAY better. Where they did fall down though was the food.

Sad airline food! They brought mine over and said 'vegetarian?', I said 'vegan?'. They said 'vegetarian?', I said 'vegan!?'. She said 'DID YOU ORDER A VEGETARIAN MEAL??' I said no, I ordered a vegan meal. She said yes here you go and gave me this tray of sadness.

It was as grim as it looks. The thing in the middle was some sort of potato concoction, which was edible. The green stuff on the left? No clue, but it was evil. The carrots were not much better. I ignored the sad looking salad.

Then about an hour before landing was snackbox time. Um, Airline Snack Box Fail!! It wasn't even hidden honey, it's right there on the front of the bar, Delta!! That banana too, tiny and still green, barf! And frozen orange juice. I'll pass thanks.

Here is my sad 'leaving NY' face!

Followed quickly with, but yay we're engaged face!

On the last morning before we flew home, we also made a stop to Whole Foods, which was a block or two from our hotel, so I could stock up on American vegan goodness.

I picked up Tofurky Kielbasa and Andouille sausages, Italian Deli & Bologna style slices, daiya mozz, gimme lean sausage and some tofutti cream cheese (I also took home some awesome bagels from the bakery department).

Also the sweet stuff, some from Whole Foods, some from Duane Reed: Pumpkin Spice and Winter Oreos, Sour Patch Kids (UK ones are not vegan), peanut chews, 2 types of cocomels and 3 types of nut butter cups, which I'm super excited about.

A pack of Chex Mix, because Simon and I are Lonely Island fans and if you are too, you'll get this!

And I almost forgot... a jar of vegenaise - never tried it and figured it was time I did.

So there it is, my trip to NY! It was brilliant, emotional and so much fun. I came home with a shitload of makeup, food, probably a half stone of excess body weight and a fiance!

Best trip ever.

Sal xXx

ps: if you're still awake/reading, thank you! :)