Thursday, 28 September 2017

3 Struggles of Having a Fringe (and how to deal)

So you've taken the plunge and allowed a hairdresser to get scissor-happy across your forehead. Your fringe sits perfectly and frames your features just right. Then a day or so later you WASH YOUR HAIR and think that maybe going for the chop wasn't such a fabulous idea after all...

I've had a fringe on and off since the age of 7. Full and thick, short and blunt, to the side, cut by my mum and lopsided, choppy and textured- you name the fringe, I've had it. With all this experience of fringe-bearing I know all about the very real struggles that come with a slab of hair hanging over your forehead. 

The Cowlick

I have a cowlick on the right hand side of my fringe and the struggle is real. Letting my hair air dry results in a lovely straight fringe three quarters of the way across my forehead then BAM a random chunk of fringe that curves off to the side in a sort of 90's boyband floppy-curtain-hair way. If I am just air-drying my hair (which 99% of the time is my hair drying method...) I just use kirby grips/ bobby pins to sort of train the cowlick bit to lay more flat. I have naturally straight hair so more often than not, just pinning the fringe across to one side with a couple of grips for a few hours or while I do my makeup makes it look a bit less wayward. After years of having various fringes I have come to appreciate that hair grips are almost essential when you have a fringe.

The Grease Factor

Greasy hair is just not nice is it? But a greasy fringe? Heinous! Fringes oil up quickly because they are pretty much in constant contact with one's forehead, and there's not a whole lot you can do to avoid the inevitable - you can delay it though with this nifty trick. Powder your forehead. That's right, once you've finished doing your make up, sweep some translucent and mattifying powder across your forehead to keep excess oil at bay and away from your fringe. Any sort of powder will do but from my experience, those designed for oily skin work best. If your fringe still gets greasy quickly and you're not into washing your hair everyday, keep in mind that there's no law against tying or pinning your hair back and just washing your fringe when you feel it needs it. Also, dry shampoo used sparingly will sort you out if you don't have the time or inclination to wash your bangs.

Growing Pains

There's no denying that growing out a fringe is generally pretty awkward and tedious. They seem to grow so quickly too don't they! Growing out a fringe is another scenario where hair grips are your best friend - sometimes there is no other option than to pin it back and hope for the best. In the past, I've braided a growing-out fringe with the rest of my hair to keep it out of my face (hairspray helps in this situation to stop the shorter bits of hair popping out) and also rolled/ twisted the fringe back before pinning. Once the fringe is getting a bit of length to it, start 'training' it over to one side by brushing it to an angle (like a long side fringe) and adding a bit of product to keep it in place. If the growing out phase is just too annoying, head back to your hairdresser for a fringe trim and tidy up - most will do it for free or for around £5 - £10.

While fringes can be annoying to maintain and often add more time to your morning routine, the extra effort is totally worth it. I love that I just look a bit more polished when I'm sporting a fringe even when I'm wearing ludicrously odd socks and have baby drool down my front.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Farmacy Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer

I'm an absolute sucker for sweet sounding beauty products (and by that I mean literally sweet) so it was pretty much inevitable that I was going to want to try the Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer from green beauty brand Farmacy.
Farmacy is particularly interesting because they are a true farm-to-face beauty brand, meaning they use ingredients in their products that are cultivated from their very own farm. The brand's signature ingredient, Echinacea GreenEnvy Honey is created by bees buzzing around on the farm and is incidentally the star component in the Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer. 

Gel-cream in texture, the moisturizer combines a Triple Hyaluronic Acid Complex, royal jelly, propolis and the GreenEnvy, which is high in Cichoric Acid - a natural antioxidant - and is blended with honey for a hydrating effect. The moisturizer also features a concoction of non-GMO fermented soy, meadowfoam and camellia seed oils, mistletoe (!), and Japanese blood grass (!!).
The real icing on the cake is the inclusion of tiny Cupuacu butter beads which melt on application to provide long lasting moisture. Cupuacu butter is high in fatty acids and therefore helps to soften and moisturise the skin.

As well as imparting an instant glowing, dewy look, Honey Drop boosts moisture levels and over time is designed to improve the firmness and elasticity of the skin. At the moment I am alternating between this and three other moisturisers, so I can't accurately comment on the effects of long term use but can confirm that this feels really, really lovely on the skin. Even though Honey Drop has the word 'lightweight' in the title, I still expected it to be heavy for some reason - I suppose because it looks quite thick and creamy- but it really isn't. It manages to feel almost weightless on (even when I've gone a bit overboard and applied what can only be described as a 'dollop') and manages to give a bit of glow without any of the grease. In terms of scent, this cream really doesn't smell of an awful lot, just a slightly clean and subtle honey-esque fragrance so don't expect (or fear) an overpowering sweet fragrance. To top it all off, the extremely pretty, semi-rustic looking heavy glass jar is complete with a magnetic metal spatula that sticks to the lid. Ingenious. 

You can find Farmacy Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer in the UK at Cult Beauty for £38 for 50ml.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Social Season with The Bentall Centre Kingston

Summer may be officially over but we are off on our first proper holiday with the baby today.
We've gone away in September/October for the past two years and so far have found the weather to be ideal around that time of year- pleasantly warm rather than blisteringly hot- so it should be the ideal temperature for a little one. It was great timing, then, that I was recently invited down to The Bentall Centre to see if I could find a few bits to take away on holiday with me. If you've got a social event coming up and have a wardrobe full of clothes but nothing to wear (you know how it is), The Bentall Centre is a great place to start really. Boasting an impressive range of clothing stores such as H&M, Superdry and Hollister as well as the plethora of brands on offer in Bentalls within The Bentall Centre, you're sure to find something perfect for any occasion. We are holidaying in Crete so I was on the hunt for flowy fabrics and beautiful bikinis to clothe my post-partum body. H&M is pretty reliable for on-trend, affordable pieces as well as classic basics, so I spent a while scouring the racks for something to make me feel like a Grecian Goddess. Or something like that.
I've always wanted a classic cotton Kaftan that can be dressed up with a bit of jewellery or left plain as a simple beach or poolside cover up and this one from H&M fits the bill perfectly. I also needed something to actually wear underneath the kaftan so chose this blue patterned bikini- it's a bit Missoni-esque I think and very different to what I might normally go for.

The Bentall Centre isn't just about shopping- they have a brilliant selection of places to eat too. We refueled at Restaurant on 3 which is in Bentalls within The Bentall Centre. We shared a quiche to start and for mains I had vege lasagna which hit the spot and Rich enjoyed rotisserie chicken with all the trimmings. Not only does Restaurant on 3 serve a range of varied and tasty food, it also has a lovely relaxed atmosphere which is especially welcome when you have an unpredictable 4 month old on your hands.
After lunch I went and got lost in one of my favourite places within The Bentall Centre- the beauty hall in Bentalls. This place is home to all the usual suspects including MAC, Estée Lauder, Clarins, YSL and more and also features Tom Ford, La Mer and La Prairie- an absolute dream for any skincare and makeup lover. It's very, very difficult to leave empty handed so obviously I didn't- a browse of the Charlotte Tilbury counter resulted in me leaving with a lip pencil in Iconic Nude for a toned down lip look that I know won't budge after a dolmade or two.

To find something perfect for yourself this social season, head down to The Bentall Centre at Wood Street, Kingston Upon Thames, KT1 1TP.

I was invited to The Bentall Centre and gifted a gift card. Words and opinions my own.