Thursday, 29 March 2012

NOTD - Pinky baby!

Before I'm running out to Ideal Home in London, I did these funky nails. Both are OPI varnish's Past, present and Fuchsia with OPI Gold shatter on the ring fingers :) Looks more vibriant than in the picture, so chuffed. Now time to go and not spend any money (yeah and right).

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Masterclass - Feet

aka. These boots are made for walking, And that's just what they'll do ( I know you're humming it!)

Think about this for a second, how much do you weigh (don't worry you don't need to say it out loud), then think about this all of that weighed is carried by your feet. You stand on them, walk, run and put them through a great punishment. Any shop worker will tell you the most horrid thing in their job is standing all day, I know mine used to scream by five o'clock.

The feet themselves are a mixture of more than 26 bones, 33 joints, and over 100 muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The skin on the sole is more tougher because of it what it designed to do. Your feet also sweat a lot and because of this environment can be more prone to bacteria and infections, which are just not sandal wearing feet. The best way to conquer this is:

* Don't wear the same shoes two day in a row, this will still have moisture in from the previous day still (as it take 24 hours to dry) and will keep any fungi away.
* Shop late in the day for shoes, this is were the feet are at there hottest and swollen, so when you do wear them they will fit not matter what time of the day and will avoid blisters when they rub.
* Vary the heel size you wear - My mum has always worn the same size heels from teenage years and her muscles have grown that she can't walk anywhere without shoes on. If she tries she's in pain, and has always warned me about wearing heels (hence why I am a trainer girl).
* Wash your feet - clean the day away, it'll also cool and refresh the feet. If you've got the time get a foot designed scrub (they much courser than body scrubs) and buff away dead skin with a foot file to target problem areas (This really hurts when it get built up, I personally know). You'll find it a little hard at first.
* After washing smoother in feet cream, this will soften the feet and will also soften the harden skin which will make it easier to buff away.
* Put your feet up! I get swelling in my ankles and feet and find that the best relief is to lie down with the feet higher than my heart. I've been found in funny ways to try and get them to go down.
* Get the size of your feet checked, they do change year to year and you do want to new heels to look they're best :)

The best thing to do for your feet - treat yourself to pedicure and melt into the seat as the therapist works their magic. Yes I am trained to do it myself but there is nothing like it after a hard working day to let someone take care of you. Like with anything that doesn't look right go to the doctor, they've seen and heard everything.

Next week - Hands

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

March Glossy Box Update

My box is now no more, it has been used and abused. It came in its alluring white box with 5 goodies for me to try out over the next past weeks, I, of course, obliged and didn't hang around to be told to. If you want to see the original post click here .

The one I most excited about was the Burberry lipstick in Rosewood, a lovely mixture of deep dusky pink and brown. This went one beautifully and was about two shades darker than my natural lip colour, lasting time was OK, around 6 hours for me including lunch and a coffee. Loved the smell a very light scent that didn't offend. Full price lipstick is about £23 which compared against most other high lipsticks is well within the price bracket.

Next was the 5 sachets of Erno Lazio face and eye creams, this was more a mystery considering according to the website that he has been in the business for 85 years. I found that the face creams wasn't marked clearly on the sachets what time they are used for (morning/evening), thank god I hadn't thrown the cardboard away (like I normally would do). Considering this is £175 for the set of 5, I wasn't really won over by this, it did what it was suppose to do and little else on top to warrant that kind of money.

Clarins Firming Cream lived up to the expectations, it was creamy, delicious and melted into the skin. The scent was a very delicate floral (which I am fan of). My only complaint it was a complete nightmare trying to get something so thick out of a whole so small. I ended up having to cut the top of the tube off just so I can get the stuff out! For £42 for the larger pot I think this would make a great luxury present for best mates or Mums, as you don't need a lot (my little tube in the end lasted about three showers).

Next was the Fendi perfume Fan Di Fendi, with notes of soft leather, jasmine and Petitgrain. It's very delicate and perfect for the gorgeous sunny weather we've had recently. I wore it seeing my friends and it has draw compliments that it smell divine. I love my fragrances and I know this is starting to become a favourite as it suits me really well. I am more than overjoyed with this choice.

And now my favourite of the box: The stunning Ojon Damage Reserve (more words here) Serum. I am in love this, I have thick, dyed, and frizzy hair. I also am very lazy and like to have a wash and go approach to it. I warmed two drops in my hands and smoothed it over the ends (as described) which had decided that day to be the least co-operative they've been. Ojon tamed them down into a glossy slightly exotic smelling hair I've had (it even came close those hair adds I sigh over). This was the one I seriously looked at buying, and ironically last week QVC was doing hours on the brand - There's a whole range! Ok price - £22 according to Harrods but I hunted around and you can get it cheaper and in value sets (see previous sentence). Hint: It's my 30th birthday in 2 weeks :)

What ab out Glossy themselves? Really can't fault them, I know reading other blogs there are rumblings that they didn't get what they wanted. That's not the point of these - They are sample boxes and depending on who supplies them it will be hit and miss. With this said I've had to sadly stop my subscription due to money problems (IE I have none!), but I will be back!

Like the sound of it? Click here

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Max Factor - Meteorite, Odyssey Blue and Fantasy Fire

Oh dear Boots - Why do you do this to me? First of all you had the well hunted Fantasy Fire in stock then you wave 3 for 2 under my nose, well it would of been rude not to of ignore it! (and thats what I save my points for!)

I'm so glad I've gave in after swatching them, Meteorite is the perfect silverily lilac that I've been after and the Odyssey Blue is a perfect addiction to my blue varnish collection (which has now out numbered my red collection 5 to 3!). Swatches were done with two coats, I can tell that the Fantasy Fire is going to be one to wipe over other colours to bring them to live the other two stand very well on there own.

Each polish was £3.99 and Boots 3 for 2 on selected makeup, nail, haircare, and eyelashes products started Tuesday.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Masterclass - Hair Removal

aka - How not to look like a Wookie

To start a brief history of hair removal we need to go all the way back to ancient Egypt, Greece and Middle Eastern, these times is where woman started to remove hair. They removed everything apart from the eyebrows (yes head as well!), as it was classes as uncivilised. We then go onto the Roman Empire where it was a show of class of how little hair you had. Wealthy Roman women would use pumice stones, razors, tweezers and creams to remove any unwanted hair.

The Europeans didn't really catch up until Elizabethan times, and well even then it was to remove eyebrows and reduce our front hair line to give us a longer brow like the fashions of the time. It as rumoured at the time that mother would either rub walnut oil, or bandages with vinegar and cats poo to stop growth happening. (Hmm classy)

Fast forward until 1915 where the first female razor was invented, then a model was featured in Harpes Bizarre featured a armpit hairless model. It is now more of a social acceptable practice to remove hair to look more appeasing and as with most things it was all driven forward by fashion of the times.
Let's look at the different methods of getting rid of those pesky hairs:

Shaving – The oldest and most used. Started in the cave days with men (and then women) using sharpened flints to scape the skin and hair off. These days its a little less scary by using safety sharpened blades over the skin, with this its wise to use a shaving foam/gel to aid the razor over the skin so it doesn't catch and cause any rashes. You will find you will need to shave every few days to keep things smooth.
Depilatory creams – An ancient Egyptian creation of using sugars and sometimes bees wax was put onto the skin then cloths put over this and ripped off. This can still be found but is now more classed as waxing. The current form is in a cream that is put onto the skin left to loosen/dissolve the hair and then scraped off. This can last for about a week to 2 weeks depending on hair, and always keep to the time instructions as the ingrediants are highly reactive if left on over the time allocated.
Tweezering – Using a pair of tweezers to pull out hairs at the roots, best used for very small areas like eyebrows, and for clearing any missed hairs after treatment.

Waxing – Used warm or cold is spread over the skin and removed using strips, need to have a minimum of 5mm growth before doing so the wax has something to grip and pull out. Gives some of the longest and smoothest results (its also takes any dead skin cells with it as well so a bonus exfoliation) in my experience, and can be really reasonable if you shop around. Can experience ingrown hairs that can be affected and you can get some bleeding, and will have some pain factor to it.
Sugaring – Done by the Egyptians again, but using sugar and has more of a sticky feel to it. Apart from that piratically the same as waxing.
Threading – Became more popular recently from Middle east and has been used from the original times of hair removal. It was kept for special occasions like a wedding or a girls coming of age. It uses cotton thread over the skin and twisted to grab hairs from the skin. It's perfect for small areas that need to be accurately removed, hence the explosion of brow bars and its use. Keep eyes peeled for a follow up on this subject.
Epilators – Are machines that work like tweezers, they are mini tweezers set in the revolving head that pluck the hairs out of the skin. Most people use this in between waxing appointments rather than as singular as for some people it is more painful than waxing.
There are long term solutions out there that are more money but these are the more reacable options for people. If you do decide to go for long term soltuion please put in the research and with any treatment like these and above check the salons qualifications.

Next week – Feet

Monday, 19 March 2012

Yummy Mint Green/Gold Nails

Having a break from studying for my BTEC (passed my first assignment last week - Yippee!), and my poor blank nails screamed for some TLC colour (my poor head was starting to spin with definations of foundations, powder etc.). I brought myself a Barry M mint green varnish (304) because well I needed one! I also had a OPI gold shatter that I wanted to use and just thought why not? I love the way it came out, it looks green in one light, then gold. Fab makes my poor depressed short nails come alive :)

Monday, 12 March 2012

My First Glossybox (aka Harrods Limited Edition)

I am a sucker for a limited edition, especially when it's from Harrods and it'll be only 12.75 (including P&P). I've been reading about these for a while and a couple of my mates have been raving about them, so I took the plunge after seeing some previews of this edition (and being the good consumer I am - I read the T&C's to make sure that I can cancel whenever I want, which I can). I got my mail on Friday that mine was on the way, while some people got theirs on Saturday, mine arrived today. Now I have already been seeing what people got (when you sign up you make a profile and they try and match the products from that), and I didn't like the sets that I saw. I was very uneasy what my box will be, however mine was as perfect as I could get it and I think it matched very well.

Here's the roll call of my box:

Fendi - Fan Di Fendi miniature - First smell it's very soft, spring like (which was perfect for today's weather, I'm in a T-shirt!), the sample size is generous by sampling standards (4ml) and in  mini version of the retail bottle - Very cute.

Ojon - Damage Reverse Instant Restorative Hair Serum - Brilliant size (30ml), I'm looking forward to this to tame my poor tired looking hair.

Erno Laszlo - 5 Piece Cream Set - Looks interesting, the collection is inspired by the Hollywood greats and has sachets of all 5 of the collection. I don't want to fall love with it because I'm dreading the price!

Burberry Beauty - Rosewood Miniature Lipstick - Oh this is so cute I really don't want to use it! Beauty deep natural lip colour with the Burberry check on the lipstick (which is impressive considering the size).

Clarins - Extra-firming body cream - Ah Clarins, I do love your samples, so I already have high hopes for this.

I am impressed with Glossybox so far, with myself, the set I am happy with and would happily try them all. Now I just need to give them all a little bit more of a play :)

Friday, 9 March 2012

Masterclass - Eyes

aka - all about the peepers B )

I wanted to write this one seperate after writing one of the others, I could easily see the other blog entry doubling in size!

Your eyes are supposibily the windows to the soul, I know when I met my husband it was his eyes that I loved. We met when I was 15 and him 13 (cradle snatcher I Know), he has some really soft blue eyes that always twinkled when he was up to trouble (or at least thinking it), he still has that 13 yr old twinkle now. The great things about eyes they don't really age and they are individual to each person. Unfortantly, its the area around the eyes that give it all away!

Your eyes are also an opeining (things can get in and can get out). These can be a course of irritation and the list of illness can be very long. With anything that causes longterm irritation or anything that you feel doesn't feel "right" get it checked out by your GP (espically if people are running away in horror!). There one thing that floats around that is true: the skin around your eye is thinner, can be one of the dryest area, and most sensitive; so anything that you do chose to go on this area should be designed for that area.

Cleansers for here are designed with two things in mind - To take eye make up off as well as the dirt and grime that collects over the day on your lashes and eyelids. I find if you do wear waterproof mascara to find something is a little more oilier as this will dissolve any mascara, some you can find designed for senstive eyes as well. I did have to try out (and give away) a few brands before I found the perfect one so prepared to invest time and money into finding the right one (I ended up with a Boots own one that cost £1.42 and it does the job perfectly, while allergic to some that are £20 odd).

Same as washing the face the next bit to rehydrate, now this is where the big battle starts. People are very divided on whether its worth it. The main difference between an eye cream formula and a face cream formula is that an eye cream has less additives and more emoliments (yummy moisture stuff) than face cream. I would never take both of them right up to eye but up to the boney bit of the eye socket. I do notice the difference when I have used one, a lot more freasher and brighter. You can even use your serum around here as well as they're texture are very light and its concertrated in ingrediants.

Next week: The rest of the body (because that needs TLC too!)

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

The items I've hidden from my hubby

This is what I've brought back from Professional Beauty:

From taking a subscription with Professional Beauty trade magazine, Elemis miniature set which has:
* Pro-radiance Cream Cleanser 30ml
* Papaya Enzyme Peel 15ml
* Cellular Recovery Skin Bliss Capsules 14 caps
* Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 15ml
* Pro-Intense Eye and Lip Contour Cream 5ml


Dermalogica:  pre-cleanse, Special cleansing gel, Daily resurfacer, barrier repair, and overnight repair serum

Webecos: Hydrovital gel mask, Collavital E cream, Royal Jelly night cream, Aloe vera facial day cream

From purchasing a show guide:
Spa Finds: Salt brushing sachet, Mineralizing shower gel, Conditioning scalp mud, mineralizing body lotion, mineralizing shampoo all with a large silver washbag (not pictured).
From taking a subscription to Scratch trade magazine:
* OPI Avoplex Lquid soap and body scrub set (full size)
* OPI Expert Touch nail varnish remover 120ml
* OPI Limited edition colour - Past, Present and Fuchsia
* OPI Shatter polish in Gold shatter (which I'm so excited about!)
* OPI Silver bag

And lastly for a sum of 10.00 from Helen-E
* Cream and concealer duo in a palette
* 2 loose eye shadows in No. 22 & 24
* Eye shadow brush
* Nail varnish in Pewter.

So I got lots of bits to play with, so excited about OPI - the pink looks amazing! Update on the Calgel - Still going strong even with cleaning the kitchen out, showers, being generally knocked about. The only problem is how am I going to get it off, I need to soon as my nails are getting to long to type with and they need a cut.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

My Denim Nail Varnish

Gotta love a pound land bargain, and it matches my gorgeous fleece blanket :)

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Masterclass - Skin Types

aka. Know your enemy (and make it a friend)

We are all not the same, we all have different needs and requirements for ourselves. Like ourselves, skin typing is not exclusive, you will find as we go through this that you could fall into more than one category. Over time you'll also find that you'll skin will also travel from one section to another, factors that can change this are:

* Aging (sorry)
* Pregnancy
* Stress
* Smoking (honesty give it up, you'll skin will love you in weeks!)
* Pollution (most notably the London smog)
* Medication
* Weather (going from heat to cold then heat then cold)

So why do we have skin categories? It just makes life easier for the customer and the companies, I have never ever have seen a product that can do everything that everyone requires. This gives the company focus to produce products for a certain need, as different skin types have different needs.
Right, down to basics, there are four skin types, each with their own characteristics that sets them apart from one another:

Normal Skin
Uber rare to find, one with no problems that looks fresh clear and perfect. I think of this of skin before hormones (and life) kicks in. Soft, springy, even toned and colour. This what you are aiming for when you add a foundation to skin. Product wise you can use anything that doesn't strip the skin of moisture
support of your skin.

Dry Skin
This is more skin that is moisture deficient, leaving the skin dry to touch. There would be lack of elasticity to skin, as well as dullness and flakiness. The pores (where sebum is produced) is small and tight, cell regeneration also is slowly (hence the dullness its the higher rate of dead skin cells). Unfortunately on of the most common characteristics is that your skin will look older, that is why it is good to use a creamy exfoliate to support the cell regeneration process. Due to lack of moisture dry skin is more prone to be sensitive because it doesn't have that barrier. Please invest in a beautiful creamy moisturiser, you'll skin will thank you for it.

Oily Skin
Is the complete opposite to dry, this is your skin working overtime and producing more sebum that you need. This produces that sheen on the skin, but don't mistake this for glow (that's a delicate softness, oily just looks you've dipped your face in chip oil). This skin will normally have enlarged pores, will look dull because the dead cells sit around in the oil and the blood circulation is sluggish. Unfortunately this skin will suffer with more blemishes and spots, on the good side it'll have great tone and can protect the skin from early aging. This skin will need to look more for products that are designed for your skin (oil free is a key thing), a very light lotion will be great as well as matifying serum/primer to look less shiny.

Combination Skin
Basically this has a mixture of the above, the most common combination is dry cheeks and a slightly oilier nose and forehead (this would be me). This all about maintenance and there are products out there what can balance this skin out. You might find that your skin changes like the wind blowing and you will need to change your routine season to season. I find that I get oilier in summer (where I convert to lotion) and drier in the winter (where  go to cream).

These skin types provide a basis to start on, after this you then look at the needs of the skin (anti-aging, even skin tone etc.). When I asked about people abut the skin there are two questions I normally ask is the following: What concerns you about your skin (an old habit from Lauder but it a one that always gets the answers I want) and want do you want the end result to be (keeping in mind that nearly all adverts are airbrushed within an inch of their lives)? Out of everything please just be honest with any consultants, the more honest you are with us, the more informed we are and the more we can help you look your best.

Next week - Eyes