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Friday, 21 December 2012

Review - 'Groom' G-Force Pre-Party Treatment Package at Debbie Thomas

In the run up to Christmas and New Years Eve, it all gets rather hectic and we are prone to running around like crazy people, elbowing excitable (but painfully slow) tourists in Selfridges while we try to nab last minute gifts to shove under a hastily assembled tree.

Beauty treatments? Pampering? Gah! We have no time for such pomp!

Until now ladies.....

Debbie Thomas, the renowned skin care expert based in Brompton Road's legendary Hari's salon has unveiled a collection of 'G-Force' express beauty treatment packages that polish and pamper you to perfection in just one hour.

This last Wednesday after an insane day at work I managed to squeeze in the 'Groom' treatment before I hurried off to a pressing festive engagement.

This consisted of an eyebrow wax and tint, lash tint, mini wax and manicure.

The salon was heaving when I arrived, full of Knightsbridge mummies and Sloaney socialites being blow-dried and back-combed to oblivion.

As I made my way up the steep stairs toward the top of the building, a stunning therapist by the name of Lucy with long fluttery lashes and almond eyes was waiting, ready to wax and tweeze me to groomed perfection.

After 30 minutes of submitting myself to Lucy's grooming powers, I marvelled at my darker, defined brows and sultry blue/black lashes. No more brow pencils for me! Oh noooo.

I was then led to a relaxing treatment bed where I chose a gorgeously shimmering Christmasy red colour from the Essie nail polish collection. I then proceeded to fall asleep while my nails were being filed and polished to festive glory.


Debbie Thomas also offers the following two express pre-party treatment packages which are also available until New Years Eve;

'Glam': consisting of a SiennaX spray tan, manicure and blow dry or elegant 'up do in Hari's famous bun and ponytail bar.

'Glow': A Hydrafacial (a skin-plumping, deeply hydrating facial), eyebrow tint and shape and lash tint.

So, ladies, I think you will find that it is possible to groom ones self and still have time to shop and be merry.

If  you are feeling slightly hairy/dishevelled and urgently need a quick pampering fix before that glam Christmas or New Years Eve party, book one of these splendid treatment packages now to emerge gloriously coiffed and smug, all set to elegantly wrestle for a mince pie or two.

Book (before the masses do!) at Debbie Thomas at Hari's.

Merry Christmas xxx

Monday, 17 December 2012

Product Review - Douvall's Organic Argan Oil Moisturiser

As a beauty writer, I have slathered a ridiculous amount of various lotions and potions on my skin over the years. I do however, always maintain loyalty to one moisturiser/face wash/exfoliator for a good month or two in order to discover the true effects.

One thing I have discovered in my journey of merry skincare sampling, is that the simpler the formulation, the better. Often, fancily packaged products that beckon me with their glamorous facade leave me bewildered after weeks of use when I look in the mirror and see that there is no difference whatsoever to my skin.

Out of the many pampering products I have tried, I must say that Douvall's Argan Oil Moisturiser made the most difference.

After weeks of use I did notice (especially in the mornings) that my skin looked clearer and had a noticeable dewy glow.

Containing naturally occurring skin-nourishing ingredients such as vitamin E, essential fatty acids and oodles of  free radical-fighting antioxidants, it contains only one ingredient, organic Argan oil, ethically sourced from a woman's cooperative in Morocco.

This skin-smoothing bad boy has truly become one of my beauty must-haves.

liquid gold goodness

It even travelled with me and a friend to Croatia for a week-long holiday and saved our sun-parched skin and hair from the dregs of dismal dehydration. Oh, how we fought for the last drops of this golden-hued wonder oil. How we fought....

No other product seemed to condition our straw-like hair and dry holiday skin as well as this fantastic natural product.

Argan oil is also renowned for its use to not only moisturise and prevent ageing of the skin, but to treat acne, so its perfect if, like me, you are plagued by the odd blemish now and then. In fact, while using this product I did notice my skin had never looked clearer and was happily pimple-free. Hoorah!

So, I want to say to Alicia Douvall, the creator of this skincare marvel, thank you for a simple moisturiser that does so much. Thank you for proving that less is more and that chemicals are not needed to make skin look beautiful.

You can buy Douvall's Argan Oil Moisturiser from here

Monday, 10 December 2012

Lulu & Boo Mum-to-be Collection

Being an avid organic beauty addict and after years researching the harmful effects of unnecessary chemicals in mainstream skincare, I am even more disgusted at the toxic crap found in baby and pregnancy products that are so heavily marketed to us.
60% of what we slather on our skin is absorbed into the bloodstream, so it is vital that we use toxin-free, natural products to keep our skin heathy and free from allergies and dodgy skin conditions.
Pregnant women and innocent, delicate-skinned mini people especially, need to use organic/natural skincare and stay away from evil products which contain naughty ingredients such as Sodium Laurel Sulphate (found in car washes) Parabens (many of which are carcinogenic!), synthetic fragrances and colours (nasty skin-irritants).
So when one of the first of my friends became pregnant and asked my advice on preventing stretch marks, I presented her with the gorgeously-scented Lulu and Boo Mum-to-be Collection (£40) from the fantastic nativegifts online shop - a merry collection of natural and organic, high quality skincare for ladies (pregnant or not), gentlemen partial to a spot of pampering and babies with brand spanking new skin.

The gift set comes wrapped in beautiful packaging and filled with straw - which made delving in to find the hidden goodies more exciting and satisfyingly farm-like.
It is comprised of three exciting pampering products which are safe to use during all stages of pregnancy.

Sadly, as my pregnant friend is jetting off to live in the US for a couple of years, this gift set is currently mid-ocean, being shipped to her new address, so I was not able to post 'real life. blogging stylee pics here. 
But here is the image from the Nativegifts site!

The Mandarin & Almond Relaxing Organic Bath Oil (100ml) is a gloriously-scented, 100% natural, raw and organic delight to energise and leave skin soft and hydrated. 
It is a heady concoction of mandarin, ylang ylang, sandalwood and rosehip extract to soften the skin and lift the senses. It also contains nourishing fruit oils to help prevent stretch marks.
After my rounded-tummed buddy tried this heavenly scented bath oil she said she felt "much less stressed after a crap day at work' and that her skin was much smoother and smelt like she had just had a very expensive spa treatment somewhere in the Cotswolds.
The next product in this range is the indulgent Shea Belly Butter. (200ml)
Nativegifts describe this luxuriously-rich cream as 'a deeply moisturising butter to combat stretch marks and improve the skin’s natural elasticity.'
The main ingredient in this nourishing product is the organic shea butter which is renowned for its moisturising and stretch mark-preventing properties. Shea butter contains cinnamic acid, which has notable healing and anti-inflammatory effects.
My friend has been using this for a month now during her 5th month of pregnancy and she has been raving about her smooth tummy. She also hasn't developed any stretch marks so far and while this may or may not have anything to do with the belly butter, she is definitely going to keep using it!
Moisturising the skin and improving its elasticity is always good practice for preventing stretch marks so I do beleive this creamy-textured product is a useful aid in the fight against this common problem.
With decadantly-nourishing ingredients such as organic shea butter, organic avocado, rosehip oil, calendula and sea buckthorn you know its going to be dping something right! Oh yeeeah.
Delicately scented with organic neroli and mandarin essential oils, it also is a joy to use (so I have been told!) and will leave mummies-to be smelling yummy and feeling blissed-out.
The set is complete with a Wooden Body Brush to lightly polish and exfoliate the skin - boosting the circulation to further prevent stretch marks. 
My blossoming-buddy lightly brushed her belly in circular motions with this soft-bristled, sustainable brush when her skin was dry before bathing and noticed a significant improvement in the texture of her skin.
And hoorah! Not a stretch-mark yet.
So pregnant ladies and ladies with babies, I will leave you with these words of organic beauty wisdom.
Stay away from generic, mass-produced mother and baby products that contain harmful synthetic nasties and check out Nativegifts for organic, handmade British skincare that wont harm you or your little ones but with swathe you in nourishing goodness and leave you smelling like you have just frolicked in a sweet-smelling summer meadow.