Having commented recently on the need to get the garden ready for summer, I’m now focusing my attention on me. It’s been maintenance week. I’ve had my hair colour lightened to start going a little blonder. Standard highlights with Charles Worthington’s Ultra Violet shampoo has been keeping the tone very silvery . I prefer this to a permanent colour because now I’m choosing to be blonder, the colour fades after a couple of ‘Charles-free’ washes. I shall probably revert to silver in the winter.
The gym that I attend regularly has different offers each month and recently offered a Crystal Clear micro-dermabrasion facial for half price. I’ve had this facial a number of times over the years and it does a great job of exfoliating and addressing the effects of winter as it hydrates the skin by using tiny crystals to remove the dull top layer of cells. Skin is left feeling really clean and fresh. https://www.crystalclear.co.uk/skin-systems/microdermabrasion/
Gone (until October) is the winter foundation. It’s been replaced, as for the last few summers, by Bare Mineral’s Complexion Rescue which is lighter, more like a tinted moisturiser, though with slightly more coverage and an SPF 30.
On Wednesday it was manicure day. I’ve been going once a month for a manicure to the same lady for over thirteen years and I recently posted about how I look after my nails. During the summer I tend to leave the rich purples, plums and red behind and opt for brighter colours (and one ‘nude’ for occasional use).
The colour I’m wearing at the moment is OPI Senorita Rosa-lita. I like this because it can look rose pink or terracotta and has a slightly gold sheen to it. Very versatile, it depends on the light and what I’m wearing.
Now I know from experience (friends have expressed their envy) that this next bit will infuriate some of you – I rarely need to shave my legs! The hairs are very fine, very fair and absolutely minimal in quantity. How lucky am I? I’ve shaved them this week but won’t need to do so again for at least couple of months. Really!
The legs have been bronzed a little too. I have extremely fair skin and have never liked to sunbathe but I do like to see a bit of colour. I tried a spray tan once but didn’t like the experience, the smell or the colour (and who could afford to keep it up with a re-spray required every few days?), so I returned to what I have been using since I was seventeen (and saw a demonstration in what was then Birmingham’s most prestigious store, Rackhams ) – a daily wash-off bronzer. It started off as Coty Sunshimmer, but is nowadays sold under the Rimmel brand. The colour is water resistant doesn’t come off in the rain but it can be easily washed off each night in the bath and re-applied within two minutes each morning… literally – 2 minutes. I’ve tried a few others over the years but it’s the best I’ve ever used and (bonus), one of the least expensive. I use a car washing mitten to smooth it over my legs as the ones sold for the purpose are too thin and let the colour through onto one’s palms. A quick rub with a smooth, dry cloth to buff it up and I’m set for the day. I have to admit to not being thrilled by the list of ingredients but it doesn’t contain parabens, SLSs and phthalates (at least, not in the ‘Light’ colour version; I can’t say for the others) so that’s in its favour.
In the summer when my feet are going to be on show (I love sandals) I enjoy an occasional professional pedicure. Having looked after my feet during the winter, it’s not a great problem to do it myself but who doesn’t love a bit of pampering? Lots of my favourite geranium & lavender foot balm from The lemon Tree keeps them soft.
I’ve also had a back massage. I started having regular deep massage on my shoulders and upper back when I used to regularly drive long distances for work, and fortunately the company paid for physio sessions several times. As I now spend quite a lot of time hunched over a computer , I find it very beneficial to continue with the massages so I book one for about every sixth week. The masseur has 30 years experience and does a great job of un-knotting the muscles around my shoulder blades. I can actually feel them ‘popping’ as she kneads. The stretching exercises I do at the gym help in between times.
A new Benecos eyeshadow in a lighter shade that I usually wear completes the ‘summer-ready me’ job. A total devotee of Bare Minerals, I have been getting annoyed at their rising costs (£16 for an eyeliner pencil – outrageous) and looked around for a replacement. I discovered Benecos, cruelty-free, organic products at a very affordable cost. For a blog that is usually advert-free, I’m doing a lot of recommending today! https://www.pravera.co.uk/benecos-natural-beauty Incidentally their range of nail colours are 8-free. See my earlier post if you’re not sure what this means: Nailing it . I’m reluctant to buy nail colour online without having actually seen the product but the number of Benecos stockists is growing so I hope to track some down soon. For the same reason I’d never buy foundation online as even a slight variation in tone can look totally wrong, but I’ve been happy with the eyeshadow and also a lipstick in watermelon shade that I bought previously. Unfortunately I can’t recommend the lip colour pencil in Rusty Rose – too wishy washy in colour and rather dry in texture. Do I like the range as much as Bare Minerals? No, but for products where it doesn’t quite matter so much and which cost a quarter of the price, I’m willing to compromise.
It must sound as though I am very costly to maintain – not so! I reached a stage many years ago where I struggled to know what to suggest when asked what I wanted as gifts. Now husband and children know just what to get – either the products I like or vouchers for the cosmetics or treatments I like. Rarely do I pay for a manicure as husband pre-pays for a certain amount for birthday or Christmas. And, of course, some of you already know that my daughter-in-law and I have a barter system in place where I do a basket of ironing in exchange for some of my hair dos!