Thursday, 4 September 2014

Nail polish du jour... Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine "Almond"

Up until 5 years ago, I was biting my nails quite bad. And by quite bad I mean "there was no nail left at all on my index fingers" bad. So when I realised how nice it was to not have to hide my hands in shame all the time, I started painting my nails and wearing rings.
Of course, one thing lead to another and I bought quite a few nail polishes. I did do crazy colors and the like, but I have now settled for colours on the nude range, with the occasional glamour red when I'm feeling fancy.
During my experiments with crazy colours, I discovered the Barry M range. At less than 4 euros a bottle (and very often in 3-for-2 offers in Boots), I was not taking a big risk by trying them on... and long story short: I was impressed. With most colours, only two coats are needed to achieve a perfect result that stays chip-free for three to four days.
So when I discovered their Gelly Hi-Shine range, I was full of hope: the usual fab quality with a high shine (which the the assumption one would make reading the range name)? I could not wait to try it but when I first saw I was not really attracted to any colour. Fast-forward a couple of months and I finally found one that looked rather lovely: a cute nude-ish one called "Almond".

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

TLC for sensitive skin - Avene Soothing Moisture Mask

Having sensitive skin can be a nightmare sometimes. Use a cleanser that is slightly too harsh, stay out in the sun, walk with the cold wind on your face or just go between the cold outside and the warm inside? Bam, your skin will let you know it is not happy with what you are doing to it. And if yours is like mine, it will express its displeasure in various ways: it can become red, tight, dehydrated, dull, develop dry patches and other niceties...
When that happens, I found that the best way to get it back to normal is to make sure that on top of keeping my skin hydrated on the outside and on the inside (do drink plenty of water, they are not lying when they say it is good for you), I use a face mask on the evening.
I discovered this Soothing Moisture Mask from French brand Avene a while ago, and I always make sure to have a tube in my skincare stash.

Enriched in Avene soothing and anti-irritations thermal water, this creamy face mask moisturises and calms skin down.
It is designed to increase skin hydration by restoring the skin barrier. Hypo-allergenic and non-comedogenic, it is specifically formulated to fulfil the needs of us people with sensitive skin.

The directions for use say to apply a thick layer of this mask on to your face and let it absorb and work its magic for 10 to 15 minutes, and then gently remove the excess of with a tissue or a cotton pad. What I do is apply a thick-ish layer (just enough to not see the skin underneath) and let it absorb for the recommended amount of time. Afterwards, I massage my face and only after doing that do I remove the excess with a cotton pad. I then go to bed, and the next morning I wake up with a skin that is a lot (and I mean A LOT) better than the day before: it is soft and supple, plump and nourished. 

Also, if you are flying long haul you already know how dehydrating the airplane recycled air is. Best way to counteract it? Spread a layer of this mask on your face as soon as you are comfortably sat (rub the excess on the back of your hands), and your face will thank you when you land with glowing soft skin!

The only downside to this otherwise amazing mask is that although it is supposed to be non-comedogenic, it tends to clog my pores a bit if I use it too often so if you are prone to acne it is something you need to be aware of.

What is your favourite face mask? Tell me!

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

The nitty gritty of wearing dental braces as an adult - Part I

Forgive me for it will be quite a long and wordy post... Earlier this year, I decided that it was time to do something with my teeth. I had braces as a teenager, but the combination of not having a retainer (it's not that I did not wear it, they simply never gave it to me) and wisdom teeth getting out meant that both my upper and lower arches meant that twenty (ouch) years later, my teeth were an absolute overcrowded disaster.
Since I had stopped smoking I had a little bit of cash to spare every month, and thought it might be a good idea to invest it in something important.
I researched the dentists in my area, and saw that one in town was offering the Six Month Braces treatment. I must say that the idea of getting a nice smile by wearing clear braces for six months was much more appealing than getting it by wearing metallic train tracks for two years!
So I bit the bullet and booked an appointment in the middle of February.

Monday, 1 September 2014

L'Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream.. my dry and scaly hands love thee!

So, it is September already. Autumn is upon us, and with it the usual cold weather, wind and rain (which means that it basically is the same as always, but colder).
My hands are usually quite dry, but I seem to never remember to put cream on. The only times I do remember are when it is really cold and windy and I can see my poor hands all red and crackly and ugly. So I am trying a different approach now, which is to have a tube of hand cream on my desk: I mean if it is literally in front of me all day long, I should be able to think about it right? Right?

Well, to be very honest with you I am getting quite good at putting it on regularly (it has only been a week but hey, baby steps), and I think I am falling in love with this baby from L'Occitane.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Maybelline Big Eyes: great lashes on a budget

Yes, I purchased again another mascara on Friday. That is the kind of things that happen when I am let loose in Boots (long story short: I was looking for something they did not have, so had to have a look around, saw a few 3-for-2 offers, couldn't resist. I'm weak. That's a disease, you know).
On the Maybelline corner, I could not help but see their new offering: Big Eyes Rebel Black.
It is a dual ended mascara, same formula and two separate brushes: one for the upper lashes and the other one, as you guessed, for the lower lashes.
I do not know about you, but I have never been able to use standard brushes on my lower lashes, as even with the lightest of light touches, it usually makes a mess. Would this one be the answer?
I am lucky enough in that I already have naturally long lashes. What I am really after is volume, and loads of it. I like "in your face" lashes when I go out, and slightly less big lashes at work during the day.
So, how does this Big Eyes fared?

Shower Gel... The luxury version

I have a confession to make (well, actually I have a truckload of them but this one will be the first): when travelling, I always make sure to arrive to the airport early. Not out of a fear of missing my plane or something adult like that... but just so I have the time to peruse the shops and spend the equivalent of the GDP of a small country.
My last time in Paris was no different: I was exhausted after a weekend of partying and sleeping too little (I'm getting way too old for that), but still I got to the airport at 9:30am for a 12 noon flight. That's how dedicated I am.
I was specifically looking for the Nuxe Reve De Miel shower gel (they did not have it when I went there the time before), and thankfully they had the big pump bottle. Took it with several other little things, and went my merry way. 
The lady at the parapharmacy till stroke a discussion with me (I have dental braces, so did she.. we became friends forever with shared stories of shredded cheeks, painful teeth and awkward eating), and was nice enough to put everything in the sealed bag you need to go through security because of those pesky liquids restrictions.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Is that... Is that a spot on my face??!!

Hello, my name is Celine, I am a thirty-something woman... and I get spots. 
The one thing I liked when I was a teenager was that despite everything that was going wrong I did not have any spot. I danced through those years without getting a single spot. Lucky, eh?
Fast-forward a few (okay okay, an obscene amount of) years, I started getting a few pesky ones mainly on my chin and my jaw bone.
After complaining about the unfairness of getting them now as an adult (I mean come on, having to deal with fine lines AND spots at the same time is most definitely not what I thought growing up would be about), and trying a lot of different spot treatments, creams, potions and lotions, I finally found my saviour in the shape of a little tube of wonder.