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2/28/2014

Beauty by Ginger: Lush Spa Liverpool - Sound Bath

Beauty by Ginger: Sound Bath

This Valentine's Day was the first one that me and Boyfriend spent together. With this in mind, I wanted to plan something really special for us to do together. I am an absolute LUSH and LUSH Spa fanatic, and with Boyfriend having now become a part of this love, I had no trouble deciding what I wanted to treat us to. 

At first, I wasn't sure which treatment to go for. With so many to choose from and two The Comforter? and one Tailor Made treatment already under my belt, I was flummoxed. but, after a long conversation with one of the lovely LUSH employees, and under her recommendation, I decided to book us both in for a Sound Bath.

It was a treatment that I was a little bit hesitant about. Only for the reason that the only thing I knew about it was that it involved candles being placed in your ears. I mean, c'mon, I've never had any beauty treatment that involves flames before. You can understand my nerves.

But once Boyfriend and I had arrived at the LUSH Spa in Liverpool. My fears quickly disappeared.  

After a little wait on the shop floor (the previous treatments were running late.. Everyone was really apologetic, but we were in no hurry,) a cup of tea, and a gander at all the products (Boyfriend was made to look at -and sniff - all the things,) we were taken up to the spa by our massage therapists. 


I never grow tired of the way that going up to the spa feels like you're going round to somebody's house for a cup of tea and a slice of home-made cake. We were made to feel so comfortable and at ease by our therapists. After filling in the consultation forms and offered a glass of water, I was able to express my nerves about the whole ear candle situation, and have all my nerves quashed as they reassured me and attentively answered all my questions.

Then it was time to begin. 

Placed before us on the wooden kitchen table was a box. And as we lifted the lid surrounded by a sea of  swirling mists, inside lay two vials with "Drink Me" and two chocolate mushrooms. What a most magical way to begin any treatment. I felt a sudden sense of giddiness. Almost like the feeling you get before you tear down the biggest drop of the roller-coaster. I just had this feeling that Sound Bath was going to be a massage like no other. 

Sound Bath Review

Once in the double treatment room, we were invited to take a seat. As we took in the relaxing atmosphere of coloured lights and tea candles, incense was lit, and we were shown how the tuning forks were to be used. (Having never seen a tuning fork in my life, I was very glad that what I saw before me was not a piece of cutlery!)

There is simply no way to describe the sensation of having a tuning fork placed on your skin. The immediate sense of relaxation that came over me was completely unexpected. Our massage therapists also explained the rest of the treatment and what might happen. I'm being decided cryptic with some details of the treatment. With Sound Bath, more so than the other treatments, I think what you get out of it is deeply personal, and I wouldn't want to spoil the effect for anybody. 

Beauty by Ginger: Sound Bath Review


But trust me, you'll fall completely into a state of relaxation such as you may have never experienced before.

Boyfriend and I tucked ourselves in to our massage beds, and with a quick ting-a-ling of the bell to say that we were ready. It was time. 

Akin to the other treatments I have had at LUSH, the soundtrack to Sound Bath was just beautiful. And the treatment is choreographed in perfect time to the music. Every movement and part of the massage just flows. 

A dance on your skin. 

The treatment began with focus on my face and jaw. I've never had a facial massage before, and I don't think I'd ever realised just how amazing it could feel...Until then. 

I cannot imagine just how much tension I must carry in my face everyday, but I certainly felt any stress I had vanish almost instantly. I was so relaxed I literally thought I was going to melt in to the massage table. The massage combined with the use of the tuning forks is hypnotic and completely inexplicable. My body just gave a huge sigh of relief and I was floating. Lost in the moment and surrounded by utter relaxation. 

I don't know where I went, but I was nearly asleep on the massage table. 

Beauty by Ginger: Sound Bath Review

When it was time for the ear candles, we were gently asked to turn on to a side of our choosing. By this point, I was completely un-phased by the candle that was about to be placed in my ear that I turned on to my side unmoved from my relaxed state of mind. 

This is the part of the treatment that I remember the most. Even though my eyes were closed, I could still see a glowing flicker of orangey-yellow warmth. It really felt like I was in front of an open log fire in a log cabin in the middle of an isolated field. It was not uncomfortable in the slightest, and felt very surreal. Boyfriend and I must have been in sync because we chose the same side to turn to for the first ear candle. 

After the ear candles came a seriously intense head massage. And by no means was thin intense in a bad way. Oh no. Having never had a head massage (but loving those mini ones you get at the hairdressers sometimes,) I didn't really know what to expect. Yet I found myself subconsciously moving in time to the movements of the massage. My head went where it needed to be placed and yet my mind stayed in its hypnotised state. 

The use of the soundtrack with the massage could not be more perfect to help bring you back floating down from your cloud and on to the ground. It gently nudges you out of a sleepy state and allows you to wake up slowly. 

Boyfriend and I stood in silence for a few minutes after the massage. I don't think either of us really realised that the treatment was over. It all seemed so surreal. 

Sound Bath Review Just Add Ginger

One of our therapists greeted us after the massage and led us to the seating area. We were treated to a pot of calming, aromatic tea, and sat in our mesmerised state. I can't really explain how I felt after the massage other than to me, the world seemed more alive. I was more in tune to what was going on around me, and everything had this fresh rosy glow. I felt calm. I felt at ease. And it was wonderful.  

Sometimes it is difficult to clear our minds of the stresses of everyday life, problems we have, worries we feel. But Sound Bath gave us that time to just be. We could unwind in a place where nothing could seep in to our heads. And it was just what we needed. 

Have you tried Sound Bath yet? What did you think?

2/21/2014

Ginger's Jollies: Yukti

I have been wanting to write up this food review ever since I first stepped foot inside Yuktibut decided to wait until I had been back at least once. I am a first impressions kinda girl, and I go on my first instincts a lot. But when it comes to food, I don't take it lightly. I need to be seriously impressed before I decide if a food experience is worth writing about.

Ginger's Jollies: Yukti

So. With three trips so far this year under my belt, I am ready to get started. 

For the longest time since I moved up to Liverpool, the space where Yukti resides has been empty. It was merely a shell of a building, and it always made me feel really sad to drive past it and see it looking so melancholic. I always looked at it and thought, "that'd be a great site for a restaurant." 

And then, Yukti opened last year, and you can imagine how intrigued I was. Especially because my favourite Indian restaurant in the area had closed down months previously. 

But it wasn't until just before my birthday at the start of the year that me, Boyfriend and MG finally went to investigate. 

It was the décor that instantly drew me in. As soon as you enter the main dining space, you are transported out of Liverpool and in to a world of mystery, spices, and luxe. The lights are toned down, creating an immediate sense of comfort and intimacy. Flickering tealights are placed on each table, and ornate fixtures and pictures decorate the walls. The floor space is big, but not overwhelming. Tables are spaced a good distance apart from each other (so there is no risk of unsuspectingly tripping over somebody's chair leg.) And there is a separate section dedicated to booths for those who are looking for a more private dining experience. 

But what made me smile the most, is the one glass panel attached to the wall that separates the main floor from the booths. The one constant reminder of where you are and that combines beautiful Indian cuisine and exotic décor with part of Liverpool's history: a glass painting of John Lennon. It's done subtly and in keeping with the calm tone of the restaurant, and helps combine two cultures together in a seamless way. 

So. To the food. 

The first time we went to Yukti, it was on a whim and we had no idea what to expect. I was thinking along the lines of amazing-quality Indian comfort food, lovingly dished on to a plate and ready to warm me up on a cold Winter's night. So you can imagine my surprise (and utter delight) when all the food came out dressed on the plates like this: 

Ginger's Jollies - Yukti

I mean. How gorgeous does it look? I am literally starting to dribble looking at the photos right now. To have something so beautiful placed in front of you just makes you smile inside. Especially when the portions are a great size too. The dishes were appetisingly dressed, but definitely not minuscule. 

In the three times I've been to Yukti in the past 2 months, I've had quite a variety of dishes. So instead of focusing on a few, I'll do an overall description of my food experience. 

YUM.

Ginger's Jollies - Yukti

I'm telling you that out of al the dishes I have sampled (and I've insisted on trying mouthfuls of everyone else's food at the table,) everything has been 100% delicious!

The breads have been thick and warm....the starters innovative.....and the main courses absolutely burst with flavour. All the portions are a good size, but not overwhelming. There is not one thing that I look back on and think, "oh no, I couldn't order that again." 

Boyfriend (who is just as much of a Foodie as me) even said that he thought it:
 "wasn't just one of the best Indian cuisine restaurants in Liverpool, but one of the best restaurants in Liverpool full stop."

Yukti is honestly one of the best Indian cuisine restaurants I have ever been to. The food is entirely affordable, the atmosphere is wonderful, and the staff are genuinely so helpful and so friendly that you feel more like you've gone to a restaurant that's been there for years rather than one that is relatively recently opened. When we went back the second and third time, as soon as we walked through the door we were greeted with smiles and conversation. Considering how many people must eat there each wee, the fact that the staff remember you makes you feel even more welcome and valued as customers. 

And did I mention this happens after the main course?

Magic hand towels! 
(Not marshmallows as Boyfriend & I thought they were at first!)

video

If you live in the Liverpool area and haven't been to Yukti yet, I highly recommend that you give it a visit. Dining at Yukti isn't just about a meal, it's about an experience.

Have you been to Yukti yet? What did you think?

For more information, go to: 



2/16/2014

The Boyfriend Tag

Boyfriend Tag Just Add Ginger

After the success of Boyfriend featuring in some of my Ginger Vlogs over on my JustAddGinger YouTube channel, I thought it would be really fun to do The Boyfriend Tag together as a bit of a Valentine's Day Special. 

If you haven't seen it yet, here is the finished product....



The Boyfriend Tag Questions

1. Where did we meet? 
2. What was our first date? 
3. Where was our first kiss and how was it? 
4. Did you know that I was the one? 
5. First impression? 
6. When did you meet the family? 
7. Do we have a tradition?
8. What was our first road-trip?
9. Who said I love you first and where were we? 
10. What do we argue about the most?
11. Who wears the pants in the relationship?
12. If I'm sitting in front of the TV what am I watching? 
13. What dressing do I get on my salad?
14. What's the one food don't I like?
15. We go out to eat what do I get to drink 
16. What size shoe do I wear? 
17. If I was collecting anything what would it be? 
18. What is my favourite type of sandwich? 
19. What would I eat everyday if I could?
20. What my favourite cereal? 
21. What is my favourite music? 
22. What's my favourite sports team?
23. what is my eye colour?
24. Who is my best friend? 
25. What is something that I do that you don`t like?
26. What is my heritage?
27. You bake me a cake for my birthday. What kind do you make?
28. Did I play sports? 
29. What could I spend hours doing? 
30. What is one unique talent that I have? 
Psss..... Here are the Bloopers from our Boyfriend Tag video.....
The Boyfriend Tag Bloopers Just Add Ginger

2/13/2014

One-Handed Way to: Do A High Bun




I'm always looking for ways to increase my status as an independent woman. 

First it was learning to tie my shoelace one-handed, then it was changing the bedding, then on to simple, no-fuss ways of putting up my hair. 

And now I have found a way to do a high bun myself!

It was completely by accident. On Saturday I was really frustrated because I'd woken up early, needed to go to the gym and wanted my hair out the way. So, I decided I would just have a go at throwing my hair up haphazardly and create something that would keep my hair out the way whilst I worked up a sweat. 

I didn't dream that I would find a way to do a hairstyle I usually need helping in doing. 

So, I decided to film exactly how I did my hair. It's not the neatest, but it's a step in the direction of hair independence. And I really wanted to film it to show that there always IS a way to achieve something you never thought would be possible.

If you know of anybody who would be helped by this video, please feel free to share it. If it helps inspire and empower just one person, then I know that it will have helped another lovely lady/man gain independence. 

And if you have any other ideas for "One-Handed Ways" videos/posts I could do, let me know in the comments below. 



Valentine's Day Gift Guide for Her

Valentine's Day Gift Guide - Her

So....this is it.

Valentine's Day is nearly upon us.

Some of you may have already thought about what to get the one you love as a symbol of your affection. But if you are still trying desperately to think of something for the festivities that tomorrow brings, here are a selection of gift ideas to help inspire you in what to get your special lady.

1. Say It With Flowers: I know for me there is no better feeling than being in a room with a vase of my favourite flowers. And it doesn't have to be the god ol' romantical classic of red roses that you give your lady love . If you know her personal taste in blooms, then treat her to a bouquet of gorgeous petals. It's a simple gift, but one that speaks heaps.

2. Bedazzle Her: If she is a big jewellery fan, than giving the gift of bling this Valentine's Day could be a great gift idea. Maybe you've seen her pawing over pages in her favourite fashion magazine, or wistfully looking wide-eyed through shop windows. If you've clocked on to a piece she really likes, then surprise her with it.

And if you're not sure about what item of jewellery to find for her, choose something that stands out to you. A piece that reminds you of you're love will bring instant meaning to the gift, and fill it with sentiment. She'll really appreciate the thought you have put in to your pick too.

3. Pamper Your Princess: Everybody needs and deserves some quality "me" time. To make that time for her extra special, why not indulge her with some beautifully-scented bath & body goodies.
You could even book a mini spa day/break for the two of you. This will give you the chance to spend some quality time together, and feel like a million dollars. There are bound to be some sensational spas & treatments out there that will cater to both you and your other half. Pick some treatments that you both will appreciate and feel the frustrations of daily life melt away.

4. Bubbles: Ahhh....There is no feeling more decadent for me than sitting with a glass of my favourite bubbly. If you know what her favourite tipple is, why not spoil her with it this Valentine's Day. Surprise her with it before you have a romantic meal, use it to toast your relationship, or save it for another occasion. Whatever you use it for, I'm sure if she's a fan of some cheeky fizz she'll appreciate having a fabulous bottle of it in her collection.

5. Say It With Chocolate: Another classic gift, but one that never grows old. Nothing says "I love you" quite like chocolate does. Personally, I always go for chocolates that are boxed beautifully if I'm looking for a gift to send someone special. I think it adds that little touch of luxury, and makes it all the more exciting.

6. Sweet Scents: This gift may be for the more daring out there as it means you really need to know her tastes to a T. It can be a risky task picking a perfume, but if you're not sure, pinch the bottle she is currently using (or note down its name,) and take it with you when you do your shopping. There will be sales assistants and people who can help you pick out the perfect scent for her based on the scent she already has. She'll no doubt appreciate the risk you took in picking up a new perfume for her to try.

7. Take a Trip: This doesn't mean you need to break the bank to fly you both first class to France to have dinner at the Eiffel Tower. Just like I said in my Valentine's Day Gift Guide for Him, it's all about a trip that creates happy, romantic memories for the two of you that you can look back on. It could be as simple as taking a winter walk in the park together (weather permitting of course,) following in the footsteps of your first date together, or having a candlelit meal for two in your favourite restaurant. Ultimately it's all about the time you spend together.

Hope you have a Happy Valentine's Day.


2/10/2014

Ginger's Fashion: Chelsea Girl

I haven't been out for a good old "knee's up" since before Christmas. 

So naturally, on Saturday night, I was desperately itching to get my boogie shoes on. But I was not desperately itching to get out in to the horrible rain that had been inescapable all day. How could I possibly wear my old faithful suede shoe-boots and wade through puddles?

It was just going to have to be a non-heels occasion. 

Bowler Hat: Topshop
Military Jacket: Primark
Blue Skater Dress: H&M
Studded Belt: Primark (detached from another dress)
Chelsea Boots: New Look
Pear Bracelets: Various
Stacking Rings: H&M 

This was the perfect opportunity to test out styling up my new shiny Chelsea boots that I ordered from New Look a few weeks ago. I had worn them out during the day, but not had the chance to test-drive them for a night on the town. 

I decided to go for one of my favourite bargainous H&M dresses, and completely bling-myself out with accessories. With the finishing touch of my beloved Topshop bowler, I was good to go. It felt so good to be comfortable and feel fabulous at the same time...One of those rare occasions where function and fashion went hand-in-hand and skipped merrily along together. 


I kept my hair au-natural, and went for a brown-toned smoky eye and red lip combo (post selfie-taking.) I always like to rock this combo when I'm using a basic as my main outfit to inject some extra pazzaz in to my look and emphasise my hair (which I use as my main accessory.) 

What was your outfit of choice this weekend? 

2/06/2014

The TMI Tag



I have seen The TMI Tag floating around on YouTube recently. 

With some of my favourite YouTubers ju,ping on board and filming it, I decided it was my turn. So on Sunday, I sat down in front of my camera and decided to give it a go too. 

Now, I tag all of YOU to do this too! 

The Questions:
What are you wearing?
Ever been in love?
Ever had a terrible breakup? 
How tall are you? 
How much do you weigh? 
Any piercings?
OTP? 
Favourite Show?
Favourite bands?
Something you miss? 
Favourite song?
How old are you?
Zodiac sign? 
Quality you look for in a partner?
Favourite Quote?
Favourite actor?
Favourite colour?
Loud music or soft? 
Where do you go when you're sad?
 How long does it take you to shower?
How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
Ever been in a physical fight?
Turn on? 
Turn off? 
The reason I joined YouTube? 
Fears?
Last thing that made you cry?
Last time you said you loved someone? 
Meaning behind your YouTube Name?
 Last book you read? 
The book you're currently reading?
Last show you watched?
Last person you talked to? Face to face?
The relationship between you and the person you last texted?
Favourite food?
 Place you want to visit? 
Last place you were?
Do you have a crush? 
 Last time you kissed someone?
 Last time you were insulted? 
Favourite flavour of sweet?
What instruments do you play?
Favourite piece of jewellery? 
Last sport you played?
Last song you sang?
 Favourite chat up line?
 Have you ever used it?
 Last time you hung out with anyone? 
 Who should answer these questions next?


If you do this tag, don't forget to leave me a comment below to share your answers or a link to where I can find your TMI Tag.