Holland & Barrett: New Store and Haul

Hey Owlets!

Last day of London spam, I promise (well, maybe). If you're a blogger you probably have "that list". A list of brands you would love to work with, but never think it will happen. Well, I'm proof that it could.

Probably very few of you know this but I have a lot of issues with both sensitive skin and my stomach which means that I have a list longer than my arm that I either can't eat or can't put on my face, which has caused no end of issues over the years. It's because of this that I absolutely love Holland & Barrett - it's basically Heaven for picky eaters, and sensitive stomachs or skin - so when I was contacted by the lovely Emma to invite me to the opening of their new Marble Arch store I was over the moon!

The timing worked out perfectly as I was already in London for the gala (by the way - how is it fair that Adam looks better than me in this photo?!). We went for a wander round and I'm now considering the fact that I'm going to have take a trip to Marble Arch whenever I'm in London.

One of the first things that I'm allergic to is Lanolin (the stuff from sheep), which I don't know if you know, but it's in pretty much every mainstream beauty product going. In the new store there's a massive section of vegan beauty products (makeup and skincare!) which is amazing. Obviously it's great if you're trying to transition into being a vegan, but for me it was just incredible to look through beauty products and not spend hours studying the ingredients.

They also had a huge section of bath bombs - baby ones and full size ones - which I'm completely obsessed with.

Going along with the vegan theme, they also have a vegan nail bar. I always knew Zoya was 5-free (free of 5 of the harmful chemicals in most nail polishes) but I never realised that they were vegan. For £15 (or a bit more if you'd like a more luxury treatment) you can have a hand massage, and your nails filed and painted, which of course I had done ready for the gala in the evening (I couldn't find the picture of my nails but hang on for the vlog - you'll get bored of me showing you).

Over anything else, I just need to comment on how friendly and genuine everyone was. I wish I had gotten everyone's names, but this is Laura who painted my nails. She's Italian and has the best sense of humour of anyone I've met! I was showed around the store by Lizzie who was really helpful with my long list of allergies, but every single team member I met was lovely, and you can really tell that they enjoy what they do.

One of the things I didn't realise until I'd seen the press release is that every member of staff is qualified, and knows what they're talking about so you know you're getting good advice. All of their beauty products are micro-plastic free, and they have an olive bar and cereal station at the front of the shop which is such a good idea (especially if you know my love of sundried tomatoes).

So, on to the haul! I actually took this photo in our hotel room because I couldn't wait to open the melon juice (let's just say my shopping bag was a lot lighter by the time we left London).

Food wise, I got some chocolate and hazelnut granola (which is now my breakfast of choice), my usual snack of banana chips, some quinoa to try, Nakd chocolate and coconut bites, some nuts and an Eat Natural bar which didn't survive 48 hours.

While I was chatting to Lizzie about my struggles of what I can and can't eat, she suggested trying some vitamins (I'm iron deficient and permanently tired) which so far (it's been 5 days) have already made a big difference. I also got some snail gel (it's not actually slimy - watch the vlog!) and some manuka honey body wash. But the one thing that I am most excited about is that they have a "make your own body scrub" bar, which is incredible. There's a whole range of oils to choose from, three different bases and two kinds of salt or sugar for the scrub. I actually asked Adam if it had leaked when we were on the tube back to the hotel because I could smell it, but it was because it had been used on my hands an hour before and was still strong.

On the way there I thought we'd maybe spend an hour and then go grab a coffee but ended up spending so long where we were enjoying the new store (and my manicure) that we had to go straight back to the hotel, not that I minded.

If you've followed my blog for a while then you'll know that I only ever review honestly and never give a positive review for the sake of it. I think the store is incredible, the staff are amazing and I'm so pleased with everything I picked out (although they need to start selling a large size of melon juice - the cost is starting to mount up). If you've got any health issues or you want to make healthier choices I would definitely recommend you visit and have a chat with the staff if you're nearby.

Love and Feathers, 
 The Owlet 💜 

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