Monday, 20 June 2016

Shower gels for summer

Much as I adore the Aesop Geranium shower gel, I do concede it ain't cheap. Not that I do cheap as a general rule but I was casting about for some new shower gels to try.

First up from my shop of the moment:


Other Stories is knocking it out of the park at the moment.  This is a fiver and it's very nice, quite heavily scented but fortunately I like the scent. Nice packaging. All round bargain.

If you want to feel like you're in a spa then this Trilogy gel is very nice.


It smells clean and expensive. It is quite expensive at £16.50 but it's half the price of Aesop! Beauty maths makes that a bargain.

Ortiga is a gorgeous brand. You see it in Italian shops which means it must be good.


I bought the lime shower gel and it's really nice, almost bitter and not cloying. Again, I can't claim this is cheap at £22 but it's a treat worth having. If summer ever comes, it will feel most refreshing after a sweaty day commuting into the city.

If I had to pick one of these to buy, I'd recommend the Trilogy gel. It is truly lovely.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Best beauty halls in London

How have I not covered this before? I love shopping and I love beauty products. Nothing makes me happier than prowling round a beauty hall nosing into everything, sniffing perfume, drawing eyeliners on the back of my hand and chatting to the staff about what's new.

I know many people are intimidated by beauty counters and I can see why. The assistants can be a little pouncey in their quest to sell but the best advice I can offer is to talk to them a little. If that seems too much effort, tell them you just wanted to have a look. If they still mither on at you then go to another counter.

Beauty halls have upped their game in the last few years. It's no longer enough to have Clarins, Clinique, Mac and Bobbi Brown. Now you have to stock all the quirky brands, have great lighting, feel luxurious and somehow feel different to the competing beauty hall next door.

I have been to all the central London department store beauty halls. None of them are bad. Some of them are heavenly. One of my favourites is Fenwick.


This was revamped last year to include a massive Charlotte Tilbury concession. If you want to avoid crowds, this is the shop to visit. The tourists haven't clocked on to Fenwick in the same way they crowd into Selfridges. It feels like the department store for the London insider. I've always loved the whole shop. The top floor has the best denim choice in London. The bathrooms up there are worth a visit in themselves. The beauty hall has all the usual suspects but it's delightfully laid out, feels spacious and like I say, isn't madly busy.

Selfridges is always a must. It's very big and busy but that's all part of the fun. It feels like a party. It has all the counters you expect (including Jo Malone and Origins) and also round the corner is the best bit. All the independent, harder to find brands. Aesop for example. Candles galore. Hidden hair products you never thought you needed. The Tom Ford counter is also a must-visit. It takes a heart of stone and iron resolve to come out of Selfridges without a yellow bag.

If I had to pick a favourite though, it would be Liberty. I was in there last week and it's better than ever. All the seats have been decked in Liberty fabric. It has bathtubs filled up with one product (Pixi Glow Tonic on Friday), it has a whole Diptyque section, it is simply divine. The staff are very friendly and helpful. And the perfumery. Oh, the perfumery. I could spend hours there alone.


Liberty is a beautiful shop and walking into it always makes me happy. It does get busy but it's worth it.

I know people rave about Harrods. I've not been for a very long time. I believe it probably is fabulous but I can't really be doing with Harrods, it's so touristy. However, please report back if you feel I should get over my London snobbery and check it out again.

Green People cleanser

Yet more evidence that I work with lovely people. A colleague and friend came in last week with a present for me. It was a bottle of this. A new cleanser which she said she loved (same friend who likes yesterday's This Works leg stuff) and that she orders through Ocado. She popped a bottle in for me on her last order. How delightful is that?

I scuttled home with it and tried it immediately. It is a balm and it smells like heaven on a plate. It really is gorgeous. It works very well although the instructions say you can rinse off with warm water. Yes, you can and I did but it's nowhere near as effective as the trusty hot flannel. It's a great cleanser that I think would suit any skin and if you shop with Ocado, it's easy to buy! You can read more about it here.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

This Works Perfect Legs Skin Miracle

Summer? What summer? Let's not discuss this weather.

The word 'miracle' is bandied about in beauty and frankly, very little is really miraculous. However, this stuff lives up to its name. A friend recommended it and her legs always look good so I splashed out (it's £37 so it is not cheap) and I haven't looked back. I have got bored of applying fake tan that develops, it's just too high maintenance and the smell. Even when they say they don't smell, they do.

With this, you rub it in and go. It's a gorgeous texture and is a cinch to apply. It's scarily dark when it comes out but blends into a soft very light tan that somehow makes your legs look 100% better. I recommend this for everything, if you're wearing a skirt, if you're about to hit the beach, if you want to feel better about life. It doesn't come off until you wash it off so no worries about staining your clothes or it rinsing off in the monsoon.

I can honestly say, it's made my life better. And that's what beauty products are ALL about. Recommended.


Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Nail polish of the summer

I just returned from Lisbon and that meant going through duty-free and that meant buying a new nail polish. Of course. I've had my eye on this one for a while. Bleu Majorelle. It's the same blue that you see at the Marjorelle gardens in Marrakech.


Ever since I went there, I've been obsessed with the blue.


It's perfect. I am pleased to report the nail polish is exactly the same shade and I cannot stop admiring my hands.

This is the perfect summer nail colour and I'm sorry to say that you need it in your life. It's the usual YSL dream consistency, the most cack handed can apply it flawlessly. I think I now need the yellow polish too. It never ends.




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