Archive for September, 2010

Beauty on a budget: Headmasters Salon

About two months ago, I returned home from a trip to the US; New York and California. Of course, it was amazing, fantastic, wonderful and all other positive adjectives that are associated with an overseas jaunt. However, what most people forget to mention is the crippling lack of finances that comes with returning home. Well, that’s the case with me! Yep, basically every dollar spent over there.

So what’s a beauty lovin’ girl to do as she struggles to get back on her (in dire need of a pedicure) feet? Expenditure on beauty treatments is only going to cause guilt, and in the case of those with boyfriends, those shifty accusing yet bemused glances – come on girls, you know what I mean.

Having always wanted to try out the services of a hair/beauty school, I figured now was the best time and fired up Google to get researching. I’m based in Melbourne, and there were a plethora to choose from, as I’m sure there would be in the other major cities. I have to admit, quality of web page did come into it when deciding who I would go with, I guess it’s the new ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’. Well, Annoymous, I was going to judge them by their webpage because looks are everything in this business! Plus, I was already nervous about students performing treatments on me…

For a $10 blow wave, I couldn’t go past Headmasters, located in the CBD on Collins Street. As I felt this was such a bargain, I opted for a 10-min treatment too, which was another $10. I had somewhere to be, but gave myself an hour and a half chair time. After being greeted on arrival and shown to my chair, an extremely shy girl handed me some papers to fill in, which resembled a hair ‘medical history’ of sorts asking you to detail all the products you use. Thoughtful, but I wasn’t really in the mood as I wanted fab hair, and fast. And please note, this is a budget service so there’s no coffee/tea offer and some a pile of glossies to read. My hairdressers proceeded to mix up my treatment (Paul Mitchell brand) and my first impression was that she did everything very slowly. I decided to tell her I had somewhere to be, so if she could stick to the time frame that would be much appreciated. She nodded, then went on to paint the treatment into my hair, about ten strands at a time. Yes, the most miniscule amounts of hair were attentively coated in the masque. I appreciated the gesture, but anxiety was rising.

In the end, I had to ask her to rinse the treatment out, and get onto the blow drying as I was really going to be in a rush. She approached my wet hair cautiously and began to blow dry, very slowly. Time was seriously flying by and my hair still a sopping mess. Another girl was called in to help, which was a relief and stress levels were hitting the big time. I was concerned that they hadn’t used any product in my hair (yes, none) before blowdrying, nor after – not even a finishing/fly away spray. I hastily paid and left, running for my appointment 20 minutes late.

Not fully deterred yet, a friend and I booked ourselves in for a $30 dollar facial, again with Headmasters. We were led into a small room partitioned with screens, which had about nine massage table beds ready for clients. On the bed next to my friend, I eased underneath the towels and was introduced to a sweet girl who would be my therapist.

‘This won’t be so bad, sharing is caring,’ I thought. The facial itself was adequate, but once again my therapist did everything incredibly slowly, and spent a fair bit of time away from the table finding things. It was quite distracting really, with a gaggle of other students outside the partition deciding where they would like their next tattoo overpowering the rainforest music being played over the speakers. ‘You didn’t pay for luxury,’ my sing-song voice taunted me.

After an hour, with my mask not even having being applied yet, I was beginning to become uncomfortable. A quick peek to my left confirmed that my friend was nearly done. What was taking so long?! Not being the type of facial that you would want to go on forever and ever because it was just heaven on a plate, I became fidgety and felt myself counting the minutes. After an hour and forty-five mintues, I was done. Unfortunately I just felt sheer relief at the fact it was over and also that I didn’t have anywhere I needed to be. I think that is definitely the key with these appointments – make sure they are the last item on your schedule for the day!

While the treatments were definitely good value, especially considering the time taken to complete them, I’m not sure how regularly I would go back. I thought the budget facial might be good for a bit of low-key maintenance from a therapist, but I think I would rather pay full-price for a professional facial, one that’s more likely to induce drool out the side of my mouth rather than stress. However, my friend loved her facial, and raved about her therapists massage skills, (man, I was jealous, the massage was one of the lowest points of my facial!) so I suppose like most things, it’s just luck of the draw!

I might consider trying another hairdressing/beauty school in the future – I was really hoping this idea would have been my budget-beauty winner! Ahh, maybe next time.

So, have you ever had treatments from a beauty school?
Would you?
I’d love to know what you think about the whole idea.

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Share The Happy

Now, that’s an intriguing headline for Hump Day morning. If you’re struggling to get your engines going to climb that hump, Clarins (that brilliant French skincare company) may have just the right ingredients to make you smile.

It’s one of the great things about life. Smiling, and more importantly making others smile. It’s refreshing when these two goals are recognised by a global company, especially one with the stature of Clarins.

Now, let’s get to making you smile: http://www.sharethehappy.com.au is an interactive website with the goal to make you smile. It’s a simple concept really; share a compliment with the world, and a random person somewhere will receive it. You can log on to the site, read others’ compliments, and then send them on to friends and lovers, or just absorb them yourself. Cute hey?

Not only are the smiles for free, but so are the samples of the new Clarins range, Daily Energizer. The tab ‘Compliment Yourself’ brings up the options for receiving your sample of the new products, aimed at young women aged 16 – 25.

When I talk about Clarins to my friends, (you may have read about my love of a certain Clarins legend,) a common remark is that they think Clarins products are for older women. While they do have great anti-aging products, it’s not just for the more mature skinned among us – and the proof is in the Daily Energizer pudding.

Now the youngin’s can experience the luxury that is a heavy, frosted glass jar of Clarins joy.

I have been using the Daily Energizer Cream-Gel with such enthusiasm I look forward to washing my face so I can apply. The texture is amazing, and as the name suggests, is a thick gel that absorbs rapidly into the skin, creating a glow and radiance without a hint of shimmer, yet has a matte finish. How do they do it?!

The lotion drys quickly, and acts as the perfect base for makeup. I’ve been using a primer with SPF included as well, as the Daily Energizer cream-gel does not have SPF protection.

This post could not be complete without a mention of the heavenly scent that accompanies the application of the cream-gel. While not a pro in any way when it comes to scents, I’ve definitely put my finger on it being Frangipani with a hint of citrus – divine. When summer finally arrives it will be the perfect daily moisturiser, light, non-comedogenic and the gel texture will feel sublime, especially when popped in the fridge for hotter days.

The power ingredients of vitamin C, turmeric and Ginkgo biloba help to cover minor imperfections and increase skin radiance by increasing micro-circulation. I wouldn’t say the cream tingles on application, but I can definitely feel something happening. I even went out without a wash of bronzer on the other day, a big deal for a Lover of Bronze.

Clarins Daily Energizer Cream-Gel

While I was happy to wait until I was a mature lady (living in my Parisian apartment and retiring to my chateau on weekends, of course) to enjoy my many Clarins potions, I am so happy to say that those of us with younger skin can make the most of it – glowing and radiant.

Over and out, I’m off to Share The Happy.

Models Prefer… Donuts.

No they don’t silly! They prefer carrots, and great eyeshadow palettes.

I had the day off work on Saturday, so decided on a Priceline-peruse. As you do, it’s clearly one of the top activities you could choose.

And Priceline, never failing to satisfy, offered me an eyeshadow palette that rivaled my current lust-worthy addition to my makeup bag, the Bobbi Brown Day to Night Eye Palette in Warm, ($99, not exactly spare change) which I read about on PRIMPED. It’s limited edition of course, as Bobbi likes to do – the cheeky minx! She’s got creating hype and urgency for an amazing ‘essentials’ prod down to a fine art!

Here she is. Beautiful, right? Image: primped.com.au

So you will understand my glee when I stumbled across this Models Prefer eyeshadow palette in ‘Warm’ for… drumroll please… SIX DOLLARS.

Pick a colour any colour!

Yes, okay, it’s not as luxe looking nor would I imagine as good a quality as Bobbi’s palette, but for a girl on a budget it’s ticking several boxes. And, if my thrifty smugness is allowed a say, the Models Prefer palette contains an extra three colours than the Bobbi Brown. Metallic coppers, deep browns and shimmering creams makes for a perfect palette on the uber cheap.

Thank you Priceline, you caught me just in time. I have the feeling I may have caved to the lure of Bobbi B…

Have you met Pearl?

No, not your Nan’s bestie, but the newest must-have creation from that winner of a beauty brand, Benefit.

Girl Meets Pearl is an amazing liquid illuminator that hasn’t left my skin for the past few weeks for many reasons.

Isn't she pretty!

The ‘I Love It’ List:

– It’s the perfect golden pink. It’s like Benefit’s High Beam and my NARS Orgasm Illuminator were the stars of Knocked Up, and after one too many there was huge regret but in the end it was fine because hey presto! There’s a gorgeous new baby to love, and her name is Pearl.

– The nifty click and twist applicator dispenses just the right amount, with no mess. A huge improvement on my problem with ‘other’ love of my life High Beam.

– It’s versatile; mix it with moisturiser for a just-there glow, mix with foundation to add extra radiance, pat above or below makeup on your ‘high points’ such as cheekbones, brow bones and cupids bow to illuminate.

-It smells delicious! Raspberry and camomile are the scent of choice for Pearl, and she wears them well!

– Benefit have packed some extra skincare goodies in there for you. Sweet almond seed firms and soothes, while seasame oil moisturises.

Thank you, dear friends at Benefit, for creating such a wonderful product to join my family of illuminators. I know, family rules – you can’t play favourites. But I have the feeling that Girl Meets Pearl will be staying at the top of my beauty bag for a while…

10% off Elite Makeup Academy

It’s not what you know, but who you know baby,  and since you know me and our pal Onya Magazine, you’ve got all the right connections.

Onya Magazine and Elite Makeup Academy have teamed up to offer Onya readers a 10% discount on the Makeup Artist Essentials course, perfect for beginners or those looking to enter the makeup artist industry – how great is that?!

Warm up your Zumba moves and samba on over to Onya Magazine to read the full article.

And since I told you about it, I expect unlimited pro smokey eye applications. Only fair right?

Awe-mazing Hair @ GPO Designer Style Series

‘Gimme gimme! I want!’ in the words of a petulant three year-old, but considering I am in all countries an official adult, I’ll go with – ‘Wow, this is some seriously amazing hair, I’ll have to clear my schedule one morning to sit and try, try again until I achieve such heights and modern polish with my ‘do!’

The Designer Style Studio, held at Melbourne’s GPO and sponsored by Harper’s Bazaar, left me not only lusting after the beautiful fashion (the cream lace Fleur Wood dress if you’re wondering, and yes, delivery to my home address is fine) but also the awe-inspiring hairdo’s on display.

Click here to read on and view pics of said amazing hair over at Onya Magazine!

Vanity Shots: Smudging

Yep, here they are -the shameless (well a little) vanity shots! Some people did ask to see, and in the duty of beauty I need to show you my better-than-expected results from smudging, done last week. After the look of balayage, I was told smudging is how I would achieve it, and yep, I’m happy!

It’s quite a gradual and natural look, which is best for my first time because really, I’m an au natural gal at heart and anything too drastically dark and then light might freak me out! I think next time I might get some of the bottom lightened, just random pieces though to keep with the grown-out, faded and sun-kissed-ends theme!

It was hard to get a pic that showed what it actually looks like, because it can look drastically different in different types of light… so here are 3 pics that give you a general idea… I’m still a bit yeahh.. but nah! when I see the pictures, which again has something to do with using an iPhone methinks! Note to self: get your regular camera fixed! Or buy a new one! Seriously!

So, does seeing this help you understand more? Has it convinced you to try something similar?
Enough that you will forgive the vanity shots?
Remember – you might have to say smudging, not balayage!

Trying to find good light... in my little sister's bedroom - hence the Twilight posters on the walls..

Oh my gosh! How did one of my recent beach holiday happy snaps get in here?!


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