Bamboo Straw Review And A Discount Code

[I was kindly gifted with these bamboo straws in exchange for my honest review.]

After attending the Circular Economy conference I got a better understanding of how recycling and especially plastic recycling works, and why it doesn’t often work, and it has provided me with a better picture of what plastic should or shouldn’t be used for.

Plastic can be a wonderful material for certain uses, but there are many uses for which there are more cons than pros and such is plastic used in food packaging or as utensils. Food contaminates plastic which makes it more difficult to recycle, as the food contamination lowers the quality of plastic that it can be recycled into and therefore single-use plastic often end up on the landfills or being incinerated. How plastic contaminates food is another matter as plastic can’t be tested for everything at the same time, but rather it can be tested for certain “leaks”. Therefore you might want to use compostable or reusable packaging and utensils when possible. One of the great materials used in reusable utensils is bamboo. It provides some wonderful benefits whilst not costing too much to the planet.

Bamboo Straw Review And A Discount Code - byLiiL

Bamboo

Bamboo grows quickly without pesticides and when grown with responsible forestry it can be a fairly sustainable material. Bamboo is free of all the chemicals used in plastic straws and is naturally anti-bacterial. At the end of use, bamboo is biodegradable and can be composted in industrial compost. For straws bamboo is an excellent material, although it often varies in shape, it is durable when properly cared for.

Bamboo Straw Review And A Discount Code - byLiiL

Alternative to Bamboo Straws
  • Plastic – We are used to the feel of plastic straws in our mouths and therefore prefer them, however, this perception can be changed. Nevertheless, plastic straws can be useful for when other alternatives are not suitable.
  • Silicon – Is a great alternative and can be recycled, but is not biodegradable.
  • Stainless steel – It requires quite a lot of energy to produce and can leave a metallic aftertaste, although it could be recycled.
  • Paper – Is a single-use alternative, which could potentially be recycled, however, it faces a similar problem with plastic and food contamination and therefore many councils do not accept them into their recycling.
  • Glass – It again requires quite a lot of energy to produce and it can be very fragile.

Bamboo Straw Review And A Discount Code - byLiiL

White Springs Bamboo Straws

White Springs want to use bamboo as an alternative to single-use plastic. They pride in creating straws which are compostable whilst still being high-quality compared to many others on the market and truly they are durable, do not crack and feel nice and smooth in your mouth. In addition, they strive to pick bamboo with fairly similar internal diameter. With your bamboo straws, you get two cleaning brushes and an organic cotton bag where you can store them, or carry them with you. You get 8 straws and two cleaning brushes in the pack.

 

My Review
  • I like them, but the thickness is something I have to get used to, it isn’t unpleasant though. I love that they are reusable, organic, made out of natural materials and that they are compostable though!
  • My partner said he felt they brought the taste of wood to his drink, but I found it didn’t affect the taste of my drink in any way, I rather liked it.
  • Cleaning them the brush goes nicely all the way through, however, feels a bit tight. It still cleans the straws very well and airdrying them is fairly quick. They are dishwasher safe as well! From previous experience with bamboo products, I wouldn’t leave the straws soaking in water, as long periods of moisture can create mould. I didn’t experience it with these straws but I am mindful of it.
  • They feel really durable, smooth and nice to use.
  • The bag fits the straws well but doesn’t feel cramped, and I love that I have something to carry them with me if I need to.
  • There is no plastic when you receive your straws. Straws and brushes are in the carry bag and the carry bag is in a neat cardboard box.
  • The straws work very well for most cold drinks, however, for some reason with carbonated drinks they float a little bit and it pushes the bubbles up, although it doesn’t much affect drinking them either.
  • The straws vary in size, but it doesn’t matter to me. Different sizes can be pleasing to different people or different drinks.
  • My kitten was really excited about them as well. Compared to plastic I am not afraid if he plays around a bit with the bamboo as then he won’t be swallowing pieces of plastic. The bamboo is durable enough so he shouldn’t be able to break and eat pieces of it.

Bamboo Straw Review And A Discount Code - byLiiL

 

White Springs has kindly offered a discount code for my byLiiL readers, for UK customers only. You can use the code: WS324977 for a single purchase (it is valid until the 31st of December), which you can apply at checkout, and you can order your very own White Springs bamboo straws here. Do check their website out for more information! You can also find them on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.

 

White Spring Add

Have you tried bamboo straws before?

With love,

Lii

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017

I’ve been really good with reading this year and already finished my 24 book goal that I had set for myself for this year. If you missed the review on the first 12 you can read it here. Here’s to fishing I will manage to write a third one before the end of this year as well!

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Good Girls RevoltLynn Povich

A story about how the women of the Newsweek sued their bosses, because of the discrimination towards women in pay and title. The book observes the lawsuit and what led to it in the 70’s, in addition to what are the women’s rights and conditions at the newspaper now.  The book is not told in a story telling way but is rather a report of the events. However, it is very interesting to read about what the conditions were then and now and to acknowledge how long it still is to be truly equal, even though the book only considers journalism. I really enjoyed it, although felt spurts of anger every now and again. 4/5

An Artist of the Floating WorldKazuo Ishiguro

This is a second book I read by Kazuo Ishiguro and I instantly recognised his style. The writing flowed smoothly and it was enjoyable to read. I am not usually interested in reading when travelling, especially when flying, but this book didn’t leave my hands when I was travelling. However, as in his other book, the main character in this book as well was oblivious of what was going on around him and was wondering it through out the book. Unlike the other book, in this one what the main character was oblivious about wasn’t really explained and I felt the books ending was abrupt and confusing, which is a shame as I enjoyed reading it.

The story itself is about a Japanese old man who used to be an artist before and during the Japanese revolution and the second world war. At his older age, he wonders how Japan has changed since the war. How women are more outspoken, people don’t respect quite the same values and Japan isn’t the glorious country it once was. It was interesting learning about the Japanese history from this point of view, but the ending kind of ruined it for me. 3/5

A Girl In ExileIsmail Kadare

I chose to read this book because it was easy to carry with me on a flight, but the impulse buy wasn’t quite worth it. The story is about a famous author in an eastern European country where after a revolution the Royals have been shunned from the public eye and locked/controlled in small towns from where they are not allowed to leave. A young royal girl is in love with the author and when she dies he gets entwined into the investigation. This all sounds more fascinating than it is. Most of the book tells of what is going in the author’s head and his struggles with the situation. 2/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

CosmopolisDon DeLillo

Is a story about a rich business owner who drives on his limousine through a day, has sex with multiple people and is paranoid for his life. He gets into weird situations and seems to have lost his interest in life. Ir is an odd story and I found it really hard to relate tot eh protagonist. For being such a thin book it was surprisingly hard to read. 2/5

Big MagicElizabeth Gilbert

I read this book because I was interested of the praise it’s gained in the social media. I really liked Gilbert’s ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ and thought I might like this one as well. I was right. This one is more of a self-help book than a novel, but it is full of the positivity with which Gilbert wrote ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. The book was full of positive affirmations and offered ways of thinking about creativity which lets creativity flow and reduces the pressure from it all. Truly uplifting and motivating book! 4/5

Cabaret of PlantsRichard Mabey

I got this book as a birthday present and read it through a couple of months before bed time enjoying the world of plants. The book was fascinating with the history of discovery and research of plants accompanied by illustrations and beautiful photography. It was too exciting so that I got good nights sleep, but exciting enough that I wanted to reach for it every night before bed. The book was very well written. I don’t really know much about plants and I wanted to keep reading this beautiful book. I loved to learn about the rare plants, the oldest trees and the plant weirdoes. I would definitely recommend reading this one! 4/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Orphan Master’s SonAdam Johnson

Not a book for the light hearted. Although it was easy to read due to the easy flow of the writing, it tells a story about North-Korea and the most horrible things the people are faced with there from torture to slavery. The story is about a man who grew up as an orphan and how he went through his life through a series of obstacles that should’ve left him dead, but somehow he lived. I thought the book was very interesting, but it left me shaken. The book was well researched and believable, although not relatable and felt more of a dystopian novel. 4/5

A Box Of Stars Beneath the Bed

This was another book that I was reading before going to sleep. It is a perfect for it with so many different and beautiful short stories written by different authors. Even if you don’t like all of the stories there will be several that will stay with you! 4/5

I Am MalalaMalala Yousafzai

I’ve already written about this book a couple of times when being inspired by tit. It is an autobiography by Malala Yousafzai who grew up in Pakistan, fought for girls right for education and got shot by the Taliban. It was interesting to read about her growing up in a Muslim country where people just want to live in peace but are int eh mids of Talibanisation. Really open your eyes to what Muslim is about and how terrorism affects us all. 4/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Architect’s ApprenticeElif Shafak

A story is about a young boy’s (Jahan) growth into manhood as an elephant mahout and an architects apprentice in Istanbul. Strange, unexplainable things are happening to Jahan and their building sites, whilst Istanbul’s population keeps growing and it is hit with one after another problem. The book is about Istanbul, love, bureaucracy, friendship with people and animals and perseverance.

I found this book a bit tough to read and felt that many parts of the book didn’t make sense. There were many story buildings which just unravelled or dropped out without explanation. In addition, the protagonist, Jahan, seemed to be very lucky through out the book that made it quite unrelatable. It was still interesting, but not the best book in the world. 2/5

The Heart Goes LastMargaret Atwood

A second book I’ve read by Atwood. In this book, compared to Handmaid’s Tale there was less remembering old times and the story builds on a straight timeline. It was about a couple who live in the USA during a time when 50% of the population is unemployed. A businessman comes up with a solution for the anarchy and offers people a twin city to live in. One month they live in beautiful houses, having jobs and security, and the second month they live in prison. It is a self-sustaining city and everything looks perfect. But it feels as though something else is brewing behind the closed doors. Although the book sounds like another dystopian story, the dystopia is within the love relationships, which it follows much more intently.

The book was easy to read and interesting, but not quite as good as Handmaid’s tale. 3/5

InfernoDante Alighieri

The first book from the Divine Comedy trilogy by Dante. I was afraid to start the book if it was too hard to read, but it wasn’t really. It is written as though it is one continues song and to make sense of what is happening you do need to concentrate on it. The harder part is the people discussed in the book who are from the 1700’s or before from history and other tales that the story slightly builds on. There is an accompanying explanation for each canto (chapter) at the end of the book though.

The story is about a man who is taken on a tour through the different levels of hell. It is interesting to read what was considered the worst sin at that time! 3/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

What have you been reading lately? Can you recommend any books for me?

With love,

Lii

First 12 books of 2017

How To Be A WomanCaitlin Moran

This is a kind of CaiMoran’sorans autobiography of how she sees she is a woman. It is funny and witty and has many forward thinking ideas, but I would not agree with her on all her points. She goes through many important stages in a woman’s life; getting the period, getting married, boy crushes, boobs etc. And the thing I was thinking throughout the book is “I wish I had this as a teenager”. It would have made me feel that what I am going through is normal, although she didn’t make these things sound normal.  3/5

Shadows of the WorkhouseJennifer Worth

Small glimpses of life in the middle 20th century London. It is a portrayal of lives of people who were struggling during that time. The workhouse, the living conditions in that time in London and how people treated each other. I laughed reading this book, I cried, I smiled and I wanted to hear more. It is excellently written and I would recommend this to everybody! 4/5

First 12 books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Three Musketeers Alexandre Dumas

I can’t believe it took me this long to read this classic. It followed the story of D’Artagnan and his musketeer friends. Their blind trust and courageousness. It is an adventure, chivalry and comradery. Quite unexpected. It is not the fastest book to read, but very intriguing and I really wanted to finish the story. I was so excited to learn, as well, that the book is based on real-life events and people, among them D’Artagnans memoir. 3/5

PersepolisMarjane Satrapi

This is actually a two piece graphic novel, which I finished so quickly! Based partly in Iran where the main character Marjane is growing up during the recent Islamic revolution and partly in Europe where she moves as a teenager. It explains what is is like living in this type of a country and what people do to keep their sanity. And later on, it explores Marjane’s feelings of superficial and ignorant Europeans. I recommend everybody to read this one as it opens your eyes to a new culture and the world. The story is so current and I think everybody should read it! 5/5

Me before YouJojo Moyes

If somebody doesn’t know what this book is about I am surprised. It is about a girl who is kind of lost in her life and finds excitement and drive to her life while working as a career to a quadriplegic man. It is a sweet, but also a very sad story. It does keep you reading to find out what happens in the end, although it is quite expected. 3/5

UtopiaSir Thomas More

A story about a world that some might find a dream, other too constrictive. It is a world of the perfect piece, community and one goal. It is an interesting read and it certainly woke my imagination and I instantly wanted to comment on what I was reading. It was a slow book to read, because of it’s monotonous tone. A philosophical read that will make you think. 2/5

The Buried GiantKazuo Ishiguro

One of my favourite books of all time. This book was mystical fantasy. The whole story was a dreamlike tale of a couple’s adventure. The elderly couple struggle upon many challenges, which are directly related to the problems in the real world. Would you like to remember everything or something better to leave unsaid? This story will make you think and it will make you cry, but it is so beautifully written it made me instantly want to read all of the author’s books! Absolutely beautiful book! 5/5

First 12 books of 2017 - byLiiL

My Life On The RoadGloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem’s biography of her travels and experiences when she was travelling to India or around the USA. It is at a time when the women’s movement was firing up and the USA elected their first African American president. This book is a wonderful group of tales about people, how empowering they can be and how when they unite they can make things happen. It was inspiring and at parts very depressing. This book was very concentrated on political and women’s movements, but it provided me with a good insight into the late 90’s of the USA. So Interesting! 4/5

Career of EvilRobert Galbraith

The third book in the Cormoran Strike series and still keeping it strong. I love a good detective book and J.K. Rowlings rich and surprising writing. In this book, Cormoran and his assistant Robin are faced with a serial killer who is threatening them. It is written from both of the heroes view as well as the villains. There are unexpected turns in the love life, there is the deepening relationship in the workplace and the disgusting mind of a serial killer. If you like a detective novel, read this book! 4/5

Animal FarmGeorge Orwell

This book tells a story about farm animals that fight off the human’s of the farm and revolutionise how the farm is kept. At the core, it is about freeing the animals from the human bondage and seeing how new power makes the animals behave. It is interesting to see how these animals start to seem more human the more you read it and how easy it is to manipulate people’s minds through slow propaganda. Interesting but quite depressing! 4/5

1984George Orwell

Very much like the Animal Farm, 1984 follows what seems like a ubiquitous place. A very communist world where people are not allowed to think for themselves, where even though it is supposed to be communist there is a small group of people who are in command and everybody is perfectly manipulated into the same mould. Where love is forbidden, children are coached to spy on their parents and nobody is your friend. Everything is for the good of the republic. It tells about an older man who wakes up to different views and hopes that there is resistance among the people in this country, that it wouldn’t always be like this. This story made me think of North Korea. I don’t know if North Korea is like this, but this is the closest to what I can imagine and it is very horrifying! This book will make you thankful of being in the world that you are in and in the wrong hands good give ideas of how to make it worse. 3/5

The Underground RailroadColson Whitehead

A recent Pulitzer prize winner, this book tells a story about a girl who escapes slavery with the help of the underground railroad. It tells a story of the time when slavery was ending, but people didn’t know what to do with the African Americans. In the south they were a property, in some states they were banned, in the north some became free. In each case, there were difficulties with the people around them. White people were afraid of them and thought of ways of how to minimise their threat, how to elevate themselves. It was an interesting and a quick read, which thought me a lot about the horrible way people were treated at that time. Although, I am not sure if I like that the underground railroad was portrayed in such a literal way, as it made me very confused. 3/5

 

What books have you read in 2017?

With love,

Lii

MOSSA Micellar Water Review

I recently finished a bottle of micellar water, which I learned that was not a cruelty-free brand and went through a process of finding a new one that would be better, natural and cruelty-free. I decided to test the Mossa micellar water first. The price point off £10 for 200ml is higher than similar products on the high street, but it is much less than the luxury products.

Mossa micellar water review - byLiiL

This micellar water is made with raspberries and hyaluronic acid. It sounds very scientific and I was a bit scared to try it out, mainly because of the word ‘acid’ on it. My skin can be sensitive and although it hasn’t reacted badly to other, exfoliating acids, I am still always cautious with them. Using the product made me learn that hyaluronic acid is not actually an exfoliating ingredient, but rather a hydrating one whilst still being natural.

Mossa micellar water review - byLiiL

Since I started using this micellar water my skin hasn’t been dry and feels soft. It makes me want to use it all the time! I apply a little bit of the product on a muslin cloth and wipe my face with it thoroughly. It doesn’t get rid of my eye make-up completely, so I do need to use other products in addition to this one. On the other hand, when I don’t have make-up on this micellar water makes me feel fresh. I wish there was more of the product, as I am afraid it will finish way too quickly!

I definitely recommend the Mossa micellar water for any kind of skin type, but especially if your skin needs more hydration!

Mossa micellar water review - byLiiL

Let me know if you have tried this product and how you liked it!

With love,

Lii

New MADARA review

I recently ordered some new products from Madara and after trying them for a couple of weeks I can now give you a little taste of what I thought about them.

New MADARA review - byLiiL

MADARA Tinting fluid in Moon Flower Rose Beige

Madara has two shades of their tinting fluid, of which one is Moonflower rose beige and the other Sunflower golden beige. I got testers for both of these to determine the shade and whether I would dare to buy the £27 full bottle of the product. To my surprise, my shade was not the golden beige, but the rose beige, which blended beautifully on my skin. I like a tinting fluid, which does not cover too much but does even out my skin tone and this does exactly that. It feels light and moisturising on the skin as well. The price is £27 but you get a 50ml bottle for that price and it lasts for a long time! I would definitely recommend this for a lighter coverage tinting fluid need.

New MADARA review - byLiiL

MADARA oil-to-milk scrub

I got this product as a travel size to give my face some much needed exfoliating while travelling. I love the way this product works. You first scrub your face with this product and then add some water to make it a bit milkier, which you then wash off. It is not too harsh for your skin and it is really easy and quick to use. Excellent for when you are travelling to get your skin exfoliated. I would recommend this to everybody.

New MADARA review - byLiiL

 

With love,

Lii

Hopscotch soy wax candle review

It’s not too long since I ordered the little parcel from Hopscotch with a soy wax candle and beautiful tear drop paper clips. And the order was not too early. Although we still enjoy some sunny days, it has become pretty cold and evenings are very dark so it is the perfect time to cosy up with a candle to read a book or watch a movie! After lighting the Hopscotch candle on a couple of nights I now have some thoughts on it that I wish to share with you.

Hopscotch soy wax candle review - byLiiL

It looks nice and high quality in its glass jar with the golden lit and minimalistic design. So even though I don’t burn it all the time, it still looks nice standing on my shelf. And excellent in pictures!

It really has a long burning time. I’ve already burned it several days and I’ve maybe gone through one-fifth of it and I have the smaller 135g size. Many more nights of burning this candle in the horizon then!

Hopscotch soy wax candle review - byLiiL

When opening the lid you can smell the lovely slightly citrusy scent, which is so relaxing. Apparently, bergamot oils have been used to reduce anxiety, so definitely excellent for some relaxation!

When burning the candle the scent is faint. So excellent for somebody who doesn’t want a strongly scented candle, although I would’ve wished for a slightly stronger scent! In addition, it smells cleaner than a regular paraffin wax candle, when burning. Not sure if this is just a placebo effect.

Hopscotch - succulent - candle - byLiiL

In conclusion, I love this candle but wish it had a stronger scent when burning. Definitely, will buy from Hopscotch again and dreaming now of the cedar and pine candle! If you want to try your own check Hopscotch website here!

With love,

Lii

Lush hair products I love

Continuing on my favourite products in use. Last time I told you about Madara, this time, it is a brand that everybody, I am sure, knows about. Lush. Yes, Lush is one of my favourite brands as well. It has spread the awareness of animal cruelty in the beauty industry and with that, and their beautifully scented products, gained a strong following of customers. I love going to the Lush store and picking up a couple of products to indulge in or brighten my bathroom with. Funnily enough, last time my sister visited me, she was wondering why my bathroom smelled always so nice. The answer is lush products. I always have some kind of lush soap in the bathroom and although it does not smell like in the lush store (I don’t think my boyfriend could take that, he gets a headache from two minutes in the store) it does bring that nice slight scent which is not too much on your face.

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I didn’t come here to tell you about Lush as a brand, as I am sure all of you know it quite well, but rather of two products which I have become quite fond off. With my love for a more natural beauty regime, I wanted to incorporate that into my hair care as well. My hair is long and quite fine although, I have a lot of it. So when it comes to hair products I require volume and conditioning care. These two products from lush have been excellent for just that!

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Seanik Shampoo bar

This is actually my second seanik shampoo bar in use, the last one lasted me ages and I loved it so much I had to get another one. Lush explains this shampoo bar as providing shine and volume, and I truly feel and see it. In addition, the scents are amazing! I do not really like those super sweet products at Lush, but rather go for the citrusy fresh ones and this is exactly it. With mimosa, jasmine and orange flower oils it provides the perfect combination of soothing, fresh and uplifting scents. So great for the hair and your mind!

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Big solid conditioner

When I decided that I wanted to try a conditioner bar from lush I noticed that the store was running out of products (it was Saturday afternoon and the store was jam packed). So I picked the first one that had some mention on volume, hoping that it wouldn’t be a disappointment. Although, me picking up the last of this kind, was somewhat reassuring.

This product smells also incredible and is a great addition to have a nice smelling bathroom. It has a butter-like consistency, which at first I found quite confusing to use, but after a couple of times, I got used to it and was amazed at how little I needed it. After using this conditioner my hair smells amazing, feels soft and healthy and not at all greasy (which can happen with some conditioners). I adore the citrusy scents in it and I notice during the day I like to sniff my hair.. a lot!

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It took me time to get used to the bar like shampoo and conditioner, but I love them and find them very handy for travelling. Now I am looking to adding some other lush shampoo’s and conditioners to try and add into my hair routine. It is good to mix things up to keep that healthy hair! If you are interested in learning more about these products head to Lush website to find Seanik shampoo bar and Big solid conditioner. What I really like about Lush products is that they are hand made with fresh ingreadients and they are transparent about their production with websites showing how their products are made. The only thing I would wish is to know whether their products are organic and where they are sourced from!

 

 

Brand rating lush

Have you tried Lush’s hair products? How have you liked them?

With love,

Lii