Lush Karma Spa Treatment: Slow Down To Speed Up! // Event & Review

Hi everyone!  How are you?  I seem to start all my posts with an apology lately… but you know the score, right? Chronic illness is kicking my butt and making blogging rather difficult!  But today, I win the battle!  I wanted to take the chance to tell you all about the new Lush Karma spa treatment.

Lush Leeds Spa Karma Treatment Launch

The beautiful Lush Leeds store!

I was lucky enough to be invited to the Leeds Lush Spa, for the launch of the new Lush Karma spa treatment.  The theme of the treatment is ‘slow down to speed up’.  The treatment is based around a 65 minute full-body massage, which Lush were inspired by Ayurveda to create.  Ayurveda is the traditional Hindu system of medicine, based on the idea of balance in bodily systems; including herbal treatments, and yogic breathing.


Lush Karma Spa Treatment  – What Happens?

The session starts with a 20 minute consultation in the gorgeous Lush spa kitchen (see below). I love this room!  It looks like a country farmhouse kitchen, just randomly sitting under Commercial Street in the busy Leeds city centre – very unexpected!  One thing to note is that all Lush Spa treatments are suitable for, or can be tailored to, vegan clients.  Obviously Lush are big on NO animal-cruelty, so they are great with adapting anything that the client is uncomfortable with.

Lush Leeds Spa Karma Treatment Launch Leeds Lush Spa Kitchen Table Lush Karma Spa Treatment

The Lush Spa Kitchen farmhouse table with some of the Karma products!

Lush Leeds Spa Karma Treatment Launch Introduction Lush Karma Spa Treatment

An Introduction to the Lush Karma Treatment

One unusual thing I saw being done during the Lush Karma spa treatment was the client having something poured gently but incessantly over her head (you can see this above, right).  Lush explained that it is usually warm oil, but they chose to use warm coconut water as some clients don’t like getting oily hair.  The warm water is poured from a Shirodhara vessel over the third eye and hair with the purpose of creating a meditative state of mind.  It did look strangely soothing!  

After the treatment, the client is free to get dressed, or use the shower facilities first.  They are then taken back to the kitchen area to relax for a while, before they have to re-enter the madness of the city centre!  I can tell you, after being down there in the utter peace and quiet, going back upstairs seems so loud, bright and crazy!


How Much Does it Cost?

The Lush Karma spa treatment costs £225.  I’m not going to pretend that’s not a LOT of money!  Saying that, I can understand where the expense comes from.  You have two therapists working on you for the full 65 minutes, not to mention the 20 minute consultation and the quality products used during the session.  I just hope I can save up and experience it for myself (as the client, rather than watching) some time!


The Karma Launch Event (Leeds)

Lush were amazing, as they always are!  They set up such a fun event for us bloggers, and the staff were all just gorgeous and sweet, as they are every time I’ve met them 😀  They are such genuine, lovely people who really do seem passionate about the company they work for, which is such a nice change.  They put on some really nice things for us on the night, including a two-piece band who sang and played the guitar throughout the event.  We were also treated to some mini-treatments whilst we were down in the spa.  I had a blissful head massage for a few minutes, and a really nice hand and arm massage (plus a good gossip with the Lush staff member giving me it, as she was into makeup too!)  We also had a mini meditation session, to give us a taster of part of the Karma spa treatment.

Lush DIY!

There was also a little station set up where we could make our own products!  We could make a Creamy Candy bubble bar, or a Butterbear bath bomb.  I got very lucky – I was one of the last ones to the making station, so I got to make one of each!  Well… if I’m honest, I made one of each plus an extra Butterbear.  I told them my nickname for my husband is Bear (I know – cringey as!) and they insisted I made a Butterbear to take home to him – bless them! 🙂  


Exciting New Lush Products!

I obviously had a good nose around the shop, looking at and sniffing all the new-to-me products too.  One of the most beautiful things I smelt had to be the Karma massage bar.  I swear, if you’re in a Lush shop, give it a sniff – it smells exactly like chocolate orange!  The new jelly bath bombs are also really fun!  They did some demos for us, putting them in bowls of water.  I got my hands stuck into the bowl which had a dissolved black, sparkly, Secret Arts bomb in it.  The texture is so much fun – quite thick and gooey but in a very pleasant way.  I couldn’t stop playing around with it!  Although I did hear from another blogger that it stained their bath, so do be careful.

I also treated myself to one of Lush’s new Jelly Face Masks.  I picked Birth of Venus, as it was the best formula for my oily/combination skin which is blemish prone.  The self-preserving masks get their unique jelly texture from a blend  of carageenan extract, fresh fruit and clays.  I’ve already tried it and although it feels strange digging a chunk of jelly out, it feels lovely on your face.  It left my skin nice and soft too!

Lush Leeds Spa Karma Treatment Launch Leeds Lush New Jelly Masks

The New Range of Jelly Masks!

After all that, it was time to make our way out of Lush’s glittery, colourful, lovely world.  Back to the real world – grey, dull and cold – boo!  But I was cheered up as Lush very kindly gave us a little goodie bag with some of their products in it.  We had a Karma Bubble Bar, a Marmalade Jelly Bomb, and a Karma Solid Oil Fizzer (which I don’t think you can currently buy).  Thank you so much, Lush!


What’s your favourite Lush product?  Have you tried any of the newest ones?  Let me know!

Where I've Been - Health Problems and chronic illness Notebook with makeup and rose

[Insert Cliched Blog Title Here]…! // Chronic Illness

Hi everyone! Remember me? I’m Katie, I blog around here. Well, I used to – not so much for the last two months or so! I hold my hands up, things have been pretty quiet round here recently. I’ve still been trying to stay active on social media, but haven’t sat down to blog for ages.  Why? Well, as you know I have a lot of health problems and suffer from chronic illness. I’m always pretty unwell and spend a lot of time bedbound and/or housebound. But life has taken its toll on me in the last month or two.

A few family events, whilst lovely, have left me spending a long time recovering. I’ve been to a couple of beautiful family weddings, and the payback was worth every minute. But it does mean it’s taken me a while to get back to the health (or chronic illness) level I was at before them.

Where I've Been - Health Problems and chronic illness me at wedding

Me at my Uncle’s Wedding (Dress: Simply Be, Sprinkle of Glitter range)

When you have chronic illness, the slightest thing can have a knock-on effect.  Just one day of significantly overdoing things can leave you with weeks of symptoms – more fatigue, increased pain and a reduction in stamina.  I knew these weddings were coming up for quite a while beforehand, and they were of very close family members.  I generally try not to overdo it or push myself too far, but sometimes I have to take the decision to just go ahead.  When it’s something really important, that will leave me with memories for a lifetime, I think the payback is worth it.  Hell…. but worth it!

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MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

Your Perfect Pizza at MOD Pizza Leeds!

Hey guys!  I apologise in advance, but you’re about to get hungry.  Very hungry!  I was very kindly invited over to MOD Pizza at Cardigan Fields Leisure Park in Leeds (where Vue Cinema is) to try some of their pizza.  I was offered the meal free of charge for review purposes, but as always, all opinions are honest and my own!  MOD Pizza Leeds is one of five MOD restaurants in the UK – they also have them in Nottingham, London Leicester Square, Brighton and Gateshead Newcastle!


MOD Pizza – Creation Story!

Founded by married couple Scott and Ally Svenson, the brand are extremely family oriented. MOD Pizza started in Seattle back in 2008.  The Svensons wanted somewhere where busy families could go for a quick, easy meal where everyone could have something different without a fuss.  It didn’t seem to exist, so they created it themselves!  The couple had spent some time living in the UK before returning to America to start their family.  This is why we’re now lucky enough to have five MOD Pizza restaurants in England!

You will notice that a few of the pizzas have people’s names – this is because three of the pizzas are named after the Svenson’s children!  There is also a pizza named after a young girl known to the family, who sadly died of cancer at a very young age.  They wanted to keep her memory alive.  This care and personal touch seems to be a theme throughout the ‘MOD family’.  All of the restaurants have a photo wall (see below) with pictures of staff and family on there.  

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MOD Pizza Photo Wall


Charity Initiatives

MOD Pizza also seem to genuinely care about their staff, charity and giving to the local community.  I had a long chat with Trev (one of the managers), who told me all about The Bridge Foundation that MOD have implemented within the company.  It is an emergency fund for staff who really need financial help.  One example was one of the staff who sadly had a family member die.  He couldn’t afford to go home for the funeral, so The Bridge Foundation gave him the money he needed.  

I think this is amazing – there is nothing in it for the company other than to show that they genuinely do care about their staff!  Not many companies would do that off their own back.  Trev told me MOD Pizza are the best company she has ever worked for, and that she genuinely feels like it is one big family.  I could tell by her enthusiasm and passion that she was totally genuine!  She almost made me want to work there by the end of it! 😀

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

This week [edited to add: actually last week – was too poorly to finish my post last week!], MOD Pizza are doing a campaign called ‘Spreading MODness’ .  They, among other charitable initiatives, will be donating £1.00 of every pizza purchased across all of its restaurants in the UK and the U.S. (114 across 16 states) to a local charity partner.

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

In Leeds the ‘MOD Squad’ are teaming up with ongoing partner-charity Cash For Kids to celebrate one of the key aspects of spreading MODness “Gratitude with Attitude”.  This focuses on encouraging staff to give back to local communities through in-store fundraising initiatives and engaging customers with the activity all week.  This year, the company expects to donate over $250,000 to charity.  Again, I really think this is amazing!  Remember – the company don’t NEED to do this, and they will be losing profits.  It just shows that they genuinely care, in my opinion!


How to Order

When you walk into MOD Pizza, it looks a bit like a Subway counter.  You can see all the fresh ingredients, to help you decide what you want to eat.  Basically, you choose whether you want a salad or a pizza.  My husband and I both went for pizza (of course!  When in Rome and all that…)  You can choose an existing pizza from the menu, which you can then add to or modify in any way you want.  If none of those appeal, you can design your own pizza from scratch!

There are a few size options – we both went for the 11″.  All the bases are really thin and crispy – yum.  There is even the option of a double crust – literally one crust, add the sauce and then a second crust!  I think I’ll have to try it some time 🙂  You start by choosing from one of five sauces (I had red sauce, think my husband had BBQ).  There are all the toppings you could ever wish for, from vegetables, six types of cheese, meats, herbs and spices and a finishing sauce to be swirled on the top!  

You pay a set price for your pizza (£7.47 for the MOD size) and can add as many toppings as you like, at no extra cost!  This is AMAZING, as usually you would expect to pay 50p – £1 for each extra topping.  I think it’s great value for money.  If you get a bit too adventurous and don’t enjoy your pizza creation, you get a new pizza, free of charge!


What We Ate

If you don’t already know, I’m vegetarian.  I had a Lucy Sunshine (red sauce, mozzarella, parmesan, artichokes and garlic) and added on pineapple, red onion, sundried tomato, basil and a balsamic fig glaze to finish with!

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

My husband had a very meaty pizza, with chicken, spicy Italian sausage and lots more; finished with a hot buffalo sauce (I think…)!  We also shared some garlic strips (a slightly smaller pizza bread, cut into strips) with a ranch dipping sauce.  Those garlic strips…. I can’t even!  I would happily eat those for the rest of my life! 😀  Both pizzas were amazing – so flavourful and well cooked.  We even ate all our crusts, as they were so light and crispy. 

I didn’t manage to finish my pizza, but MOD have takeaway boxes available to take home anything you can’t finish – so fear not, no pizza will be wasted!

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Leftovers Going Home!

What We Drank

Hubby had a pint of IPA, which was really nice. There were also loads of bottled and canned drinks available (soft and alcohol) but I couldn’t resist the fountain drinks!  There was a fizzy drink fountain which did different Cokes, Sprites etc, but there were also four fresh fountain drinks.  I tried a tiny bit of each (for review purposes, of course..!)

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

Fresh Still Lemonades

The iced tea wasn’t to my taste but I know some people love it.  The blackberry lemonade was nice, the original lemonade was AMAZING but the strawberry lemonade was my final choice!  They were all flat lemonades, but had so much flavour.  Yum!  You can also get milkshakes with different mix-ins such as Oreo pieces!


Vegan/Vegetarian Friendly?

One thing that struck me is that MOD Pizza is perfect for anyone with dietary requirements.  They do gluten-free bases.  They even made their red sauce vegan!  It was pointed out to them that it wasn’t, as it contained parmesan, so they altered the recipes so it could be enjoyed by vegans.  I love this, as it shows that they give a damn.  A lot of places aren’t so accommodating of vegans and vegetarians!

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds

There are tons of vegan topping options, with some more unusual ones like chickpeas, olives and croutons!  They also offer a dairy-free cheese, so you can get the full pizza experience, vegan or not! 


Overall, we had an amazing experience at MOD Pizza Leeds!  The staff were all lovely, especially Trev who was so helpful and informative, and just an overall sweetheart 🙂  She goes to other restaurants to help train up the staff, which is great as I think her enthusiasm for the company is really infectious!  If you ever go there, say hi to her!  We will 100% be going back to MOD… probably very soon!

MOD Pizza Leeds Review MOD Pizza Reviews Pizza Leeds


Have you eaten at MOD Pizza?  What did you think of it?  Did you make an amazing creation?  Let me know in the comments! 


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The Blogger Tag About Katie Cupcake Life With ME

The Blogger Tag // A Bit About Me!

Hi guys!  I don’t usually do tag posts, but I was tagged by my friend Luke to do The Blogger Tag and thought it looked fun!  Although I tell you lots about my beauty loves and my chronic illnesses, there’s so much I probably don’t talk about.  So now is your chance to get to know me better (oh lucky you…!)


The Blogger Tag

1) How tall are you?

5 ft 7″ – fairly tall for a girl, which I like!

2) Do you have a hidden talent? If so, what is it?

Haha no, I don’t really have a talent, hidden or otherwise!  I’d like one though.

 

The Blogger Tag About Me Katie Cupcake Life With ME

Me With My Camera!

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Emmerdale Studio Experience Leeds Review The Woolpack

Drama in the Dales! The Emmerdale Studio Experience

Last week, I was lucky enough to be invited along to the Emmerdale Studio Experience at their old studios on Burley Road in Leeds.  Although I don’t really watch soaps much these days, I used to watch Emmerdale consistently until a few years ago.  Also, my Mum is a huge fan, so I wanted to take her along!  I was invited along free of charge, for review purposes.  All opinions are honest and entirely my own.  Also, this will contain spoilers as of course I’m talking about the tour – I’ve tried to leave plenty to be experienced first hand, but just to make you aware.

The first thing that struck me was how kind and helpful all the staff are.  As I can’t walk far due to my ME, they arranged a parking space right in front of the door for me.  They also really kindly put a chair in each room of the tour, so that I could spend most of it sitting down.  They made everything so easy, and didn’t make me feel awkward.  The tour itself is also pretty accessible, which is great.

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Pastille Leeds Bloggers Tea Party Pastille Nail Bar Leeds

Pastille Leeds // 3rd Birthday Bloggers Tea Party!

Hey guys!  Just a quick post to share with you what a lovely time I had on Sunday, at Pastille Leeds.  To celebrate their third birthday, they threw a Bloggers Tea Party!  With cake, nails, jewellery and dresses, it was pretty much my ideal way to spend a Sunday afternoon! 

Pastille Leeds Bloggers Tea Party Pastille Nail Bar Leeds

Pastille Leeds’ 3rd Birthday – Bloggers Tea Party

I was SO glad I was well enough to pop along, as I’ve actually been going to Pastille since they very first opened!  As I lived a few doors down from the Granary Wharf nail bar, it used to be my ‘local’.  Back when I was well enough to work, I used to go there regularly to get my gel nails done 😀  I would highly recommend Pastille for nails, as they have some really talented staff.  Liv, in particular, is amazing at nail art.  Check out her Instagram, it’s insane!

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