Løwlander Winter IPA Beer

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At the risk of igniting your fire, The AmazingBlog  is going to mention the ‘C’ word - no, not that one, but with a certain type of pie and pudding now gracing the supermarket aisles, we feel we can mention ‘Christmas’ without too many crossed expletives being hurled into the atmosphere. Too soon? Ok, what if we mention the aftermath of that certain season which will be with us before we know it? Still too much? Ok, let’s expand this to a more general point of what happens to our Christmas Trees once they have decorated our homes so splendidly? Recycling is of course the go-to choice, but what if we were to tell you that you can now actually be drinking your redundant branches in a new beer brought to you by Løwlander, in their delicious new Winter IPA Løwlander are quite literally bottling unwanted trees and turning them into an amazing white nectar, affording us the opportunity to enjoy the magic of a certain season all year round!

Løwlander we’ve featured before see here and we’re always impressed with their stylish branding and delicious offerings.  The spruce beer is actually not a new concept, but perhaps in our more enlightened times, the sustainability of such a beverage is ever more poignant. The process appears to be quite a simple one - taking the neglected needles off their branches, brewing them up with those stalwarts of the drinks menu, juniper berries and literally turning waste into something extraordinary - a light beer who’s citrus and hoppy aroma naturally recalls evergreen forests, and much more besides. Aligning the perfect botanical normally saved for the gin label, with the pine needles delivers all kinds of interesting characteristics, and at 5% alcohol, we have a libation to suit all palates.

Being around £2.70 for a 330ml bottle, the cost is also something to celebrate, and at the moment only available from online suppliers, of which there are many – give Beer Wulf  or 31 Dover a try, or indeed Løwlander themselves. If you enjoy an evening at The Botanist or Harvey Nichols in London, why not search out a festive tankard, as it sits proudly on their drinks menu. Scrooge would be proud, and he may have enjoyed the prospect of ‘Christmas Past’ a little more had a bottle of Løwlander’s finest been included!

Bee Approved - Vegan Honey

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Veganista is a new company that we at The Amazing Blog  have discovered on our continual quest to search out healthy and nutritious options. And they have an absolute belter to tempt us with … especially if we have opted for the vegan route to our nutrition, in the form of  Bee Approved  their alternative to honey.

Being an animal product, honey of course is not suitable for the vegan diet, and therefore Veganista have come up with Bee Approved Honey as the go-to alternative for those people who wish to avoid animal products where possible. Now our first question - probably like yours - is: how? Step forward the often overlooked brown rice to take a bow, for it is this humble larder staple which when cooked and with its starch broken down, gives us brown rice syrup with easily digestible sugars. Not only is this particular nectar mushy, sticky and thoroughly delicious, but when you consider the vast range of uses that honey gives us, then the field opens up completely for Bee Approved Vegan Honey’s versatility, since it can be used in as many and varied ways itself. It can be used raw, cooked, as a garnish or indeed as the main ingredient in a plethora of dishes from desserts to cocktails, and much in between.

With the Certified Vegan Trademark  behind it, each pot of goodness is authenticated by an acutely experienced team of professionals ensuring the high standards as set down in 1944 by The Vegan Society are continually met adhering to the strict code of total exclusion of any animal products, either in manufacture or final product. All BeeApproved foods are also Certified Organic and Gluten Free.

The primary supplier of Bee Approved Honey is Veganista’s own online shop here, for 150g, we won’t be breaking the bank at the competitive price of £3.49. Larger jars are also available in 250g and 500g sizes as well as the incredibly travel friendly 10g tube for just 50p! So, these jars of golden goodness tick all the boxes - not least of all giving all those hardworking bees a thoroughly well-earned day off the perpetual round of honey production!

Shelton's Coffee - Coffee Hearts

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For us a day without coffee is a day wasted! At The Amazing Blog ever time poor, we were thrilled to receive the rather special Shelton’s instant Coffee and their Coffee Hearts have since become a bit of a life saver here at the office. We don’t know about you, but sometimes during the week we’re just too busy, to even dive into the local café to pick up a quick caffeine shot.

Shelton’s Coffee is a family owned business based in UK, where they have focused their expertise in Colombian coffee for the past 40 years. Founded by Ximena Shelton (hence the name of the brand) whose Colombian background has helped in the brand’s mission to source 100% single origin Arabica Colombian coffee. This coffee is very high-quality, all sustainably grown, ethically farmed and artisan roasted. Direct from the crop to the cup, they use two different types of roasting one is the dark roast a perfect match for an espresso because of its creamy body; and the other is medium roast which is smoother and silkier. Like us, Ximena has a hectic lifestyle too. this is why she developed Shelton’s Coffee Hearts. With Coffee Hearts, they’re so easy that all you have to do is pop one heart into a cup with hot water and let it dissolve; they are convenient, practical, and easy, revolutionising the art of instant coffee.

While the Mocha Coffee Hearts are the most popular variety out of the 6 available, we kept flitting between the Classic Colombian giving us a taste of smooth, medium roasted coffee with fruity notes, and the Cappuccino Hearts which provided us with the intensity of an espresso combined with the taste of a creamy milk foam. Far too difficult for us to choose a favourite!  All hearts come in boxes containing 10 servings individually wrapped to retain freshness and each of them is only 5 calories. We loved Shelton’s Coffee because unlike most instant coffees, they took away the bitter after-taste, maintaining the true fresh coffee flavour. They are allergen free, and don’t contain any added sugars potentiating the natural ingredients.

Shelton’s Coffee Hearts was highlighted by Mintel UK for ‘The best convenience innovation in the coffee market’ and was selected to co-exhibit with the Department of International Trade at IFE2019 as well as being shortlisted for the 2019 CHS Awards. If you are unsure about what flavour to try, why not purchase the Assorted Coffee Hearts which contain one of each of the coffee varieties, then you can decide which one you like the best. Purchase your Shelton’s Coffee Hearts box here at only £5.00, not only are they delicious but uber time-saving too, we like that!

Urban Jack - Revolution Shave Serum

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We have often wondered here at The Amazing Blog, why when it comes to shaving the unwanted follicles from our varied skin types, many shaving preparations often obliterate any view of the actual epidermis? When we are about to drag a ferociously sharp razor edge across our chins, would it not make more sense to have a cream which actually keeps visibility as a priority, allowing us to see what we are trying to do? We all have highly individual challenges when it comes to our skin, whether that be problematic acne or moles which obviously need to avoid the unforgiving blade, or indeed the more aesthetic requirements of trimming away only that which we are wanting to get rid of.

The anwer to this conundrum has happily arrived in the stylishly  designed range of products from Urban Jack - and in particular a hero product in the shape of their Revolution Shave Serum which was swiftly transferred onto the beard which needed a bit of attention. Boasting some seriously impressive ingredients -vitis vinifera (grape) fruit meristem cell culture, which are powerful antiioxidants that protect skin from UV stress and maintains the cell characteristics of epidermal stem cells; limanthes alba (meadowfoam) seed oil which functions as a skin-conditioning agent oryza sativa (rice) bran oil extract for skin soothing enzymes and antioxidant properties. And always one of our favourites, shea butter which not only provides a rich source of vitamin A, but is also rapidly absorbed into the skin and seals in moisture helping to keep those wrinkles at bay. The rice bran oil also brings unsaturated fatty acids to the mix, as well as natural antioxidants and vitamin E to help protect the skin, whereas the alba seed oil helps to form a natural barrier to keep moisture within the skin, avoiding dehydration. As proud as Urban Jack are of this shaving gem that is made up of 96% natural ingredients, they also take great pride in being against animal testing, as well as dermatologically tested, totally vegan-friendly, and of course made in the UK!

Urban Jack offer up a few suggestions to their customers of ‘how to use’ here . It comes  in at a very competitive priced £18 for 30ml, the Revolution ShaveSerum is available through their online shop here where the complete range can also be thoroughly inspected, which is definitely worth checking out for all the other goodies on offer. Standard delivery is free of charge, but we also have the option of next day delivery which is charged at £3.95. 

War Paint Makeup For Men - Concealer/ Tinted Moisturiser

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Stand by your beds troops, we are about to be brought to attention - or is that ‘TEN-SHUN’? Well, whichever is besides the point, just so long as our skin is primed and ready for action… if not, the very exciting range from Warpaint Makeup For Men that has been lined up with military precision on this desk at The Amazing Blog is just what you need. Brace yourselves boys, we have got to pull our socks up and focus on bringing our grooming regime up to scratch, or accept defeat in the face of … well the face really!

Warpaint Makeup For Men, was launch by Daniel Gray who shares with us his struggle with body dysmorphic disorder, which propelled him on his journey starting the brand and helping other, he tells us: “I still struggle every single day with how I look but every day I’m learning how to handle it and I wouldn’t have progressed and come as far as I have if it hadn’t of been for makeup”. He also went on to say, “I’m in no way saying that makeup is a cure for bullies, or a miracle serum for low self-esteem and lack of confidence. But using makeup has really helped me manage my BDD and by creating War Paint, I hope it opens a door for men to also get the support they need from makeup.” The brand has broken the stigma that makeup is just for women by creating this masculine looking range of vegan and cruelty-free cosmetics. Apparently, there is a difference between men and women’s skin, men’s skin ranges from nearly 25% thicker due to the testosterone production which in turn creates more sebum and increases the oil produced.

Taking care of our skin is nothing new, in fact unless we have been cowering under a stone for the past 20 years, then each of us will have to some extent a daily routine of keeping our skin in as perky a condition as possible - the fact we are here tapping away merrily on the laptop at all is evidence of that. However, the inevitable has become mainstream, and now simply maintaining what Mother Nature gave us, is not enough - now we have to be making the very best of what we have with the help of Warpaint- great name to help recruitment, and great product for those of us who have already signed up and are now committed to showing ourselves at our best on the frontline!

The Tinted Moisturiser  is three products in one - a foundation, moisturiser and concealerLight and easily absorbed, the tint just gives an extra depth to your skin tone, and if you need help choosing what skin type you are, then head over to here to see all the options to discover. For heavier blemishes or scars, we have the Warpaint Concealer in our arsenal to help cover those up, containing tea tree oil to boost the epidermis whilst in action. As a tip, we found using the handy shaped Face Sponge to apply the concealer which is available as part of the full range, made life a lot easier, but both products can be applied with the fingers if unarmed combat is more your thing. Costing £22 for 30ml of the Tinted Moisturiser here and £18 for a 5g pot of Concealer here, funding this weaponry for the daily battle ahead isn’t going to break the bank. All products are available through their website  here. BTW with every one their Concealers that you buy, War Paint will donate 50p from each concealer sale to CALM Campaign Against Living Miserably. This charity promotes the freedom of talking about the burdens that men face and the positive affect that a simple chat can have, when you’re just not feeling quite yourself. So remember troops - YOUR skin needs YOU!