Oops! Pounds lighter and Skin Still Shiny

Is there a word for skincare/foundation addiction? If there is, it describes moi.

[Sucker probably covers it; along with marketeer’s dream].

So a weekend away in Newcastle (our last as a non-married couple) and in the spirit of compromise – me: what do you want to do now? Wander round department stores with me? No? Ok, here’s a tenner take yourself and your newspaper off to the pub – I found myself at the Laura Mercier counter of Fenwick’s nodding vigorously as the salesgirl extolled the benefits of her products.

Ahem. Several pounds lighter off* (and darn it, money ones not fat ones) I skipped away with my little bag of purchases. I was excited. ‘Ooh, this product will give me flawless skin and a matte finish which lasts all day! Hoorah!’

Oh reader, alas… One day and six hours of foundation wear later I am shiny. Not the nice glow-y thing, but a bit greasy looking.

My last count of foundations/skin primers I own (most bought in the hope of long-lasting/non-shiny thing) is eight foundations and five primers. Perhaps I should open my own foundation exchange if folks can get over the slight hygiene issues?

Hmm. Am I destined to constantly seek out skincare products which promise what they can’t deliver and end up disappointed? Or is it just an impossibility – we humans are physically incapable of not being shiny-faced by the end of the day?

On the other hand, a bonus of ageing (and I believe, added wisdom aside, there may not be many) could be the drying out of skin. Give it another ten years and I may well look back fondly at my shiny skin years…

 

*In my defence dear reader, wine had been consumed. I was susceptible to sales of most things. Possibly, if I’d been a Newcastle resident, at this point I’d have bought coals.

For my lovely American readership, there is a saying ‘selling coals to Newcastle’ which is roughly the equivalent of selling ice to the Eskimos.

My Wedding – My Way (Totally)

According to popular rumour some women get pretty worked up about all things bridal…

Popular culture calls this Bridezilla territory and I heard one story this week that I feel compelled to share. My mum and I went mother-of-the-bride outfit shopping (personal shopper appointment at House of Fraser – do IT) and while mum changed into the 15 or so different combinations the talented personal shopper had picked out, I chatted to the lovely lady*.

It turns out she is going to a wedding this year and is to be a bridesmaid. The bride-to-be insists that her bridesmaid grows her hair so that it fits with her vision of how the bridesmaids look.

In the world of me, I view this as utterly unreasonable. And who flippin’ cares either? My mum, bless her heart, chipped in at this point with a comment about me being a very non-Bridezilla type.

Strictly speaking, I am a bit Bridezilla – if only with myself. I am frantically exercising, frantically dieting and frantically doing all kinds of extravagant skincare** things in order to make sure I look my best by May.

This self-improvement is very shallow – perhaps I should instead frantically research how to be a good spouse, the secrets of modern marriage or what I need to live a worthwhile life. (I have a feeling that the fixation with skincare, cookery programmes and my waist to hip ratio isn’t so worthwhile.)

So with this newly-reinforced ‘I am not going to be a Bridezilla’ resolution in place, my fiance and I have re-entered the minute-by-minute negotiations for what happens on our wedding day.

Me – speeches before dinner. Him – speeches after. Me – ABSOLUTELY no alcohol before the ceremony. Him – I would like a drink with my brothers beforehand. Me – so, despite our shared atheism, we do have a Catholic priest from New York coming, shall we get him to say the Selkirk Grace? Him – NO. This could be interesting…

 

 

*So, how did you get into this job? Do you love your work? Are you happy on Mondays? What happens, each season the new collection comes in do you familiarise yourself with the garments? What kind of discount do you get? You worked for the Mary Portas franchise? It wasn’t so great?

**Ahem, while in House of Fraser, I got tangled up in its beauty counters. I bought Clinique’s pore refining solutions serum and the instant pore corrector. Serum – I’ll deliver the verdict three weeks down the line. Instant corrector thingie – pretty good, but it’s never going to meet my perfectionist standards.

A 60-Second Facelift; Can it Work?

Yikes, the lack of wine drinking and cake baking has left me with plenty of time on my hands to surf the net, fall for the hype and purchase skincare products…

I am now the proud owner of a Rio 60-second face lift thingie. One of the (many) advantages of the world wide web is the wealth of reviews you find online so I did read these before pressing the ‘order’ button and the vast majority were positive.

Motive for buying? A desire to look fresh-faced and unlined for my wedding especially as I’m older than your average bride.

Basically you press the device on various parts of your face and it causes the muscles to contract. Exercised muscles stop sagging, allegedly. It is pretty uncomfortable and it doesn’t half hurt your teeth, but in the four days I’ve been using it, I have noticed an effect around my eyes and on the nose-to-mouth lines. I shall report back…

I’m back at my pre-Christmas weight. I made up my own diet; eating between three to eight ‘superfoods’ a day and sticking to about 1,400 calories (try myfitnesspal.com for a great calorie counting app).

Superfoods are a marketing concept, but spinach, berries, broccoli and oily fish are very good for you and they give you great skin too. I may well trademark my concept and write a diet book (as the world DEFINITELY needs another diet book, non?).

The Top Ten Tips for Beautiful Skin

These are a few of my favourite things...

These are a few of my favourite things…

I re-read my ‘about me’ info (often I forget who I am, where I’m going and what I’m supposed to be doing…) and realised I haven’t really blogged about skincare despite listing it as one of my interests as I’ve been too caught up with cake and fascinated by food!

(I love alliteration; it’s sublime.)

Having read a very useful post on attracting attention through blogging, I’m now shamelessly borrowing a recommended technique – the tried and tested Top Ten list (oh bliss, more alliteration).

So for the bride to be, here are my recommendations for fab skin. (Things to note – I don’t think one range of skincare gets everything right, so this selection is a mishmash of what works for me.)

1.     Boots No7 Protect and Perfect Intense Serum. Sometimes, powerful advertising exerts its seductive, siren call so I opt for other serum products and end up disappointed. When skincare has been developed in conjunction with university experts, though, it makes sense to stick with it.

2.     Dr Organic Dead Sea Minerals Bio-Plasma Mud Mask – it stings a little on application (I have sensitive skin), so put it on in the evening and wake up to clear skin.

3.     Dr Organic Rose Otto Night Cream – really gorgeous smell and, as I live in a country where daily SPF protection really isn’t needed, I use it as day cream too.

4.     Too Faced Primed and Poreless Pure primer – does a great job of disguising open pores. I put it on and occasionally contemplate going foundation-free (but after more than 25 years of wearing foundation, it’s too much of a deeply ingrained habit).

5.     Clinique Clarifying Lotion 2 – I love the clean feel you get from using this toner and the big bottle lasts for ages.

6.     bareMinerals Purifying Facial Cleanser – this does a great job of taking off make-up.

7.     Boots No7 Stay Perfect Liquid Foundation – it definitely lasts all day (which is what you want on your big day).

8.     Jerome Alexander Magic Minerals make-up – really easy to apply and fab coverage; I get compliments when I wear this.

9.      Coconut Oil – I use this occasionally as a moisturiser when my skins feeling dry and sensitive.

10.  And finally… food (way hey back at my blog subject of choice!) The best skincare advice is to drink plenty of water, eat lots of salad, fish, eggs, berries, beans and wholegrains and not a lot in the way of processed food.