Category Archives: Skincare

Skincare Review: DermaSalve Hand Cream

Winter is hell on your hands. I don’t think I know anyone who doesn’t struggle with dry hands over the winter months, it’s really uncomfortable. I have eczema on my hands, I always have done, so I’m forever moisturising them. I’m not sure how this is possible, but I find that some moisturisers make my skin feel even drier. It’s hard for me to find a brand I get on with, which won’t cause flare-ups and one which will deliver the level of moisturisation I need.

This month I’ve been trying DermaSalve Hand Cream for dry and sensitive hands. It’s formulated to help keep skin looking and feeling healthy and contains no known irritants. It’s been designed to be used for dry skin conditions including eczema and is gentle enough to be used every day.

Skincare Review: DermaSalve Hand Cream

I tried the 200ml hand pump version of the DermaSalve Hand Cream. I think moisturisers in hand pumps are so much easier to use than a tube that you’ve got to try and screw the lid back on with slippery fingers. The pump dispenses just enough for my hands and has a slight foaming action when you pump some out.

The hand cream is white and not too thick and cloying which some creams can be. It is smooth and is easy to rub into your skin, and for me it sinks in well leaving my skin feeling silky smooth to the touch.

There is no fragrance added to it, I think it has a smell which reminds me slightly of oats, but it’s only noticeable if you give your hand a good sniff.

The DermaSalve hand cream costs around £8.99 and does not contain alcohol, fragrances, parabens, lanolin, steroids or other harmful irritants. Instead it uses natural wheat germ, jojoba in combination with aloe vera and vitamins to moisturise your skin.

It’s not greasy and your hands feel like they’ve been well moisturised for a good while after. I know sometimes I moisturise my hands and I need to moisturise them again and again as the moisturiser I’m using doesn’t deliver. 

My hands are working hard at the moment, looking after my family and cleaning up after the new puppy. I’m washing my hands more, going from a central heated house to the chill outside and back again. My hands get dry, the skin on my fingers split and they need a lot of TLC. 

Skincare Review: DermaSalve Hand Cream

I’ve been using this for about a week now. I use it after my morning shower and again in the evening. I’m really pleased with how my hands feel after I’ve used the DermaSalve Hand Cream.

I think when it comes to moisturisers, and especially if you’ve got dry or sensitive skin, or eczema; you have to try a lot of moisturisers to find the ones which work for you. I thought that the DermaSalve Hand Cream delivered the extra moisturising boost my hands needed at a time when they needed it the most.

DermaSalve also make face cream, body cream, baby & infant cream and foot & heel cream. I’m especially interested in trying the foot cream as I have eczema there too. I wonder if DermaSalve can solve my eczema problem for good. 

For more information about DermaSalve Hand Cream and other products, visit their website.

Note: I was sent the DermaSalve Hand Cream for review purposes. All images and opinions are my own.

Skincare: Experiencing Fractional Mesotherapy

If you’ve never heard of Fractional Mesotherapy before, don’t worry, neither had I. That was until a few weeks ago when I was invited along to the Rejuvenate Skin Clinic in Manchester to try one of their treatments.

I could have played it safe and had a nice pampering facial, but as I’d turned 40 a couple of months ago, I was happy to step out of my comfort zone and try something which could make a real difference to my appearance. 

Fractional Mesotherapy is where a tailored cocktail of active ingredients including vitamins, peptides, hyaluronic acid and collagen are microinjected into the skin to plump out and smooth areas of concern.

If you cut through the big words, basically they take a dermapen with several sterile fine needles inside and then stamp and circle your skin with it. This makes fine channels in the skin so they can push the vitamins directly into the dermal layer. Yes, it does sound a bit odd, but I was prepared to give it a go.

Fractional Mesotherapy

I arrived at the Rejuvenate Skin Clinic on Swan Street, just on the outer fringes of Manchester’s Northern Quarter and was greeted by Leena, the Clinic Manager. She gave me a tour of the clinic and then we settled in the Fractional Mesotherapy treatment room where she talked me through what the treatment would involve.

I’d seen lots of before and after photos in the clinic (and there a lots on the internet too, looking at them has become a bit of an addiction), so I was excited to see how I would look after the treatment. Leena explained that the treatment had “minimal downtime” which means that my face should look a bit pink for a few hours afterwards but look normal within a day or so.

Fractional Mesotherapy

My treatment began with Leena having a really good look at my skin to see where my problem areas were, I told her where I was most concerned about and she focused her attention on the parts of my face which needed it. 

She then cleansed my skin and began the stamping process on my forehead. It wasn’t that bad and not painful. It was a little uncomfortable in parts, more so across my forehead, but I guess there’s not much fat and muscle underneath my skin there. Leena would stamp or circle an area with the needles and then gently massage in a vitamin serum she’d mixed up for me based on my needs. The idea is that this helps to stimulate the natural production of collagen, making the skin look and feel fresher and tighter.

Just before and just after my Fractional Mesotherapy treatment.

Just before and just after my Fractional Mesotherapy treatment.

The micro-needling lasted around 45 minutes and whilst I was glad it was over, I would be happy to have it done again, so it really wasn’t too bad. It was never painful, just a bit strange feeling. To calm my skin after the treatment I relaxed for ten minutes with a cooling saline mask which did feel very soothing. 

For the rest of the day my skin was quite pink, the next day it was a lot better, and it was only pink in the areas where Leena had focused her attentions on. You’re not really allowed to use soap, make up, moisturisers or other products on your skin for a day or two afterwards, but I was given some of the serum to take home and rub in, which again was very soothing. At no point was my skin sore or bothering me in any way, it just looked a little bit pink in places for a few hours.

Fractional Mesotherapy is good for dark circles, fine lines and wrinkles as well as scars and stretchmarks. It is very much a non-surgical treatment which you can use to give your skin a boost a few days before an occasion. They recommend a course of several treatments for you to be able to see real results in the long term.

Fractional Mesotherapy

Two days after my Fractional Mesotherapy treatment

I had one treatment, but I was delighted with the results. After 48 hours my skin looked tighter, it glowed and my fine lines were less noticeable. My skin wasn’t dry, but it was perhaps a little thirstier than usual, but I followed the aftercare instructions to the letter and I’m very, very happy with the results.

Would I have Fractional Mesotherapy again? Yes I would. It’s not a pampering treatment, and not something I’d choose if I wanted a relaxing treat, but it is a real alternative to botox, fillers and other surgical options. Several of my friends have commented on how good my skin looks since my visit to the clinic too.

Fractional Mesotherapy

I thought that the staff at Rejuvenate Skin Clinic in Manchester were friendly and professional, they were knowledgeable about the treatments and they prepared me well for something that was a little out of my usual comfort zone. The clinic was scrupulously clean, everything was sterile and Leena made sure to wear gloves throughout my treatment.

Rejuvenate Skin Clinic in Manchester offers a range of treatments and therapies for a range of skin conditions for both men and women. It’s a comfortable, discrete clinic, 5 minutes walk from Market Street and it’s somewhere I would very happily go again for further treatments.  

For more information about Fractional Mesotherapy or the Rejuvenate Skin Clinic in Manchester, visit their website.

Rejuvenate Skin Clinic, 11 Swan Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 5JJ Tel: 0161 819 5555

I was an invited guest of the Rejuvenate Skin Clinic in Manchester. I received this treatment in exchange for this blog post. All images and opinions are my own.

We're going on an adventure

Spa Days: The Spa at The Midland, Manchester

Over the weekend my husband took me to The Midland Hotel in Manchester for a romantic weekend to celebrate my birthday. My gift from him was a night in a suite, a nine course meal in The French and some time in The Spa at The Midland. It was not the worst present I’ve ever been given. The boy did very well.

The Spa at The Midland

I am VERY fond of a spa day. Sometimes I will go to a spa for a treatment or two and then chill out in the thermal rooms, sometimes I will just go for a swim, a sauna and a steam. I find thermal rooms are very good for my back (I have chronic pain), the warmth of a sauna or a steam room really eases my old bones, so a spa day isn’t just a nice treat, it’s like therapy. 

As a guest at The Midland if you just want to use the spa, all you do is phone the Spa Reception and they’ll book you in for a time. This is so the spa doesn’t get too busy and noisy. If you’re not staying in the hotel, then you’ll need to book a spa day, there are a range of options on their website.

The Spa at The Midland has won a whole host of awards including Best City Spa Break Manchester, Best City Spa Day Manchester and Best Hotel Spa Manchester. The Spa at The Midland has also been named as ‘Best City Spa’ in The Candis 2016 Spa Awards. It is very good.

Take the lift to the lower ground floor and open the door to the spa, the smell of soothing essential oils permeates up the corridor to the spa reception. We were greeted by one of the staff, given a fluffy towel, a robe and slippers and directed to the changing rooms.

The Spa at The Midland

The communal changing rooms are a little on the small side, but if they only have small numbers in at a time it shouldn’t be an issue. The changing area has showers as well as an area where you can dry and straighten your hair.

I headed straight for the pool area, taking a shower before diving in. The shower has three different settings, and is a bit of an experience in itself. The cool misty shower is great after the sauna. 

The pool isn’t large, but it’s big enough to do a few gentle laps before sitting in the jacuzzi. The jacuzzi is very warm, it was too warm for my husband, but the bubbles pummelled my back in all the right places so I did spend quite a lot of time in there.

There is a small sauna and a steam room tucked away near the tropical shower area. Both rooms are probably big enough for 4 or 5 people but no more. I really enjoyed both rooms and I would very much like to go back and spend some more time in them. There is something very cleansing about having a sauna and a steam, I’d recommend it, especially if you suffer with aches and pains.

I didn’t venture into the relaxation room, but hubs spent quite a lot of time in there, he made himself a herbal tea, found a restful corner and promptly fell asleep. I do enjoy a relaxation room after I’ve had a treatment, they’re good places to chill out in whilst you come round after a massage or facial. Or if you’re my husband, a great place to have a nap.

The Spa at The Midland

We spent a couple of hours enjoying the pool and thermal suites before heading back to our room to get ready for dinner. We are talking about coming back for an afternoon of post-Christmas relaxation in the New Year. We didn’t have the time to try out any of the treatments on offer at The Spa at The Midland, but that is something we will look at for our next visit.

The Spa at The Midland also has a gym, a number of treatment rooms and a cafe to enjoy when you visit. I’ve been to a lot of spas and this felt very luxurious, it was clean, the lighting was soft and relaxing and the staff were attentive without been obtrusive. I enjoyed my couple of hours in the spa very much and I’m looking forward to our return.

For more information and more detailed photographs (I didn’t take any photos inside the spa for obvious reasons), visit The Spa at The Midland website.

Spa Days: Volair Spa, Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

Despite a promise to look after myself a bit better this year, beauty treatments and spa days have been pretty thin on the ground. Other things and other people come first, which as a mum is how it should be, but it was definitely my turn for a bit of TLC. Real life friend and fellow blogger Liz from Expression and Confession and I hopped in the car for a day at Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park. We had been invited to the spa for the day to check out their facilities and to find out more about the treatments they offer.

Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

We arrived at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park and not being locals we had no idea what to expect. It is a large, very modern leisure centre. It’s an interesting state of the art building, filled with sculptures, interesting art works, the biggest swimming pool I’ve seen in a while, a gym, squash courts and lots more.

We headed upstairs to the Volair Spa. We were greeted by Hayley who gave us fluffy robes and slippers to change into. Once we’d got changed we sat in the relaxation room and chilled out with a cup of herbal tea while we waited for some more people to arrive. This is a really restful place, with soft mood lighting, scented candles and comfortable chairs or beanbags to sit on.

Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

After a short welcome and health and safety talk we were shown downstairs to the Thermal Suite. I love thermal suites, they are always my favourite part of a spa. The thermal suite at the Volair Spa was small but perfectly formed. It had one steam room, a sauna and a jacuzzi. Everything looked new, scrupulously clean and very very tempting.

We were given some Lycon Spa Essentials exfoliating sugar scrub to scrub ourselves all over with before we began. There were lots of different scrubs to choose from, but I went for the pomegranate. We scrubbed and showered, and with fresh glowy skin we slipped into the jacuzzi to let the de-stressing process begin.

Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

We had an hour in the thermal suite, and we tried out the sauna, steam room and jacuzzi. We felt deliciously relaxed and reluctant to leave for lunch. A two hour session in the thermal suite costs just £9.50, or two people for £15 which is excellent value. If I lived locally I could happily spend the day here, swimming for an hour or so, then unwinding in the thermal suite for a few hours.

Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

After a light lunch and a glass of fizz we found ourselves in the capable hands of Beauty Therapist Hayley. Hayley gave us a fascinating hands on workshop on how to take our make up off and give ourselves a lovely home facial. My skin already felt pretty fantastic after applying the AromaWorks facial cleanser, toner and facial oils.

We were then ushered into one of their treatment rooms. The rooms are quiet, lit softly and are lovely relaxing spaces. I volunteered to have a Crystal Clear Micro-Dermabrasion treatment. It works by gently exfoliating the outer layers of the skin and gives immediate results for a range of skincare niggles including fine lines and wrinkles, open pores, blackheads, pigmentation, blemish scars and acne scars. I have pretty good skin for my age, but they promised to blast out some of my stubborn blackheads, clean my open pores and give me a general freshen up.

The Crystal Clear Micro-Dermabrasion didn’t hurt at all. Ultra-fine crystals are blasted onto your skin, but it feels quite gentle, just a little bit like someone is gently pushing your face with something like the rubber end of a pencil (that’s the only comparison I could think of, I’m sorry). It took around 20 minutes and afterwards my skin was moisturised. When I got home I took a photo…

Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park

… and I was impressed by how fresh and glowy my skin looked. It was visibly cleaner (yes I do wash every day) and brighter. Everyone who has clapped eyes on me since has remarked on how well I’m looking too.

We had a thoroughly relaxing day at the Volair Spa at the Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park. It’s a lovely, modern spa with good facilities, great treatments, a restful atmosphere and free parking. It was so good we’ve booked to go back next month!

Visit the Volair Spa at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park website for more information and special offers.

The Volair Spa is at Knowsley Leisure & Culture Park, Longview Drive, Huyton, Merseyside, L36 6EG Tel: 0151 443 2580

We were invited guests of Volair Spa, but all images and opinions are our own. We were under no obligation to blog about our spa day.

Prosecco, skincare and a makeover in Didsbury

I am not by nature one of the beautiful people. I don’t have lovely swishy hair and flawless make up. In fact on the rare occasions that I wear make up it’s usually a quick flick of an ancient mascara and some free lip gloss I got with a magazine years ago.

The saying goes – you can’t polish a turd, so there’s no point in me trying, but this week my friend Jane and I went to Toni & Guy in Didsbury to find out more about their beauty rooms and Jane persuaded me to have a makeover. 

makeover

Jane has recently had what ladies of our age call “a special birthday”, she arrived at her party looking stunning. Gillian Rafferty, a local make up artist had done her make up and although Jane is naturally beautiful anyway (with swishy hair) she looked flawless and fabulous. Gillian has been a make up artist for ten years and has worked with celebrities including Colleen Rooney, Kate Kelly and Michelle Keegan.

Gillian did my make up and Jane watched keenly. Gillian quickly assessed my skin and applied a tinted primer, deftly hid my quite massive eye bags and put eye-shadow, mascara and eyeliner on me to make more of my eyes. She finished my makeover with some pink lipstick in a shade I’d never normally try, but obviously worked for me, and then sort of spray painted my face which fixed my make up and made it look flawless. Yes, I looked flawless.

makeover

We spent some time looking around the beauty rooms, Clare Angela is the resident beauty therapist and she offers pretty much everything you might need -manicures, pedicures, tanning, waxing and facials. Clare is passionate about skincare and she offers a range of facials using Environ products starting from £45.

During the evening Environ were there with a special camera which takes photographs of your face and allows you to see how damaged your skin is and what you can do about it. They come to Didsbury every few months, so if you’re interested it’s worth phoning Clare and booking a session with them. 

makeover

We had a lovely and interesting evening learning about make up, beauty and skincare at Toni & Guy and then we went off to drink some more prosecco in a local bar. And my make up still looked good when I got home!

makeover

Beauty and Skin Health by Clare Angela is available by appointment at Toni & Guy in Didsbury, phone 0161 445 5466 for more information on what Clare offers. Makeovers and make up tutorials are available from Gillian Rafferty by appointment. Visit her website for more information.

Win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee, Bramhall

Last month I had a lovely treat at Beauty Bee in Bramhall, Stockport. I booked myself in for a pampering facial and it was incredible. You can read my full review here, but the picture below and the look on my face in the “after” photo probably tells you everything you need to know. Read on to find out more about how you could win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee, Bramhall for yourself!

Win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee

Beauty Bee are located at Moorend Golf Driving Range in Bramhall and they offer a selection of deep tissue and sports massages to the golfers, as well as a full range of beauty and pampering treatments to non-sporting types too. Abby has worked as a beauty therapist all over the world and specialises in  Oncology massage, as well as facials, massages, waxing, manicures and pedicures.

I can’t recommend Beauty Bee enough, I had an amazing facial and Abby has a very calming and caring way about her. I’m really pleased that Beauty Bee has kindly offered the prize of a facial to one of my blog readers, one of you lucky lot will get to experience a Beauty Bee facial.

Win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee

Beauty Bee is at Moorend Golf Driving Range, 177 Woodford Rd, Bramhall, Stockport, Cheshire SK7 1QE Phone: 07876 032125. You can find Beauty Bee on Facebook. They also offer treatments on selected days at The University of Manchester.

SPECIAL OFFER: Maternity Mondays at Beauty Bee – 30% off all treatments if you are on maternity leave and book in on a Monday. 

Win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee

To be in with a chance to win a facial at Beauty Bee in Bramhall, Stockport simply enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. Please note that the prize is for the facial and does not include any transport or accommodation, so winners need to ensure they can get to Bramhall themselves. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions:
1. The competition is open to residents of the UK only aged (18) and over.
2. The prize is non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.
3. To enter, please use the Rafflecopter widget above, complete any mandatory entries and any optional entries you would like.
4. The winner will be chosen at random from all valid entries.
5.The winner will win a pampering facial at Beauty Bee in Bramhall, Stockport. Transport and accommodation are NOT included.
6. The closing date for entries is 11.59pm GMT on 16th June 2016.
7. The winner will be informed by email within 7 days of the closing date.
8. The winner may be asked to provide a full UK postal address with postcode.
9. The winner’s name will be available on request
10. Your email address may be passed on to to the promoter for marketing purposes, you may unsubscribe at any time.
11. Entry to this giveaway confirms that participants have read, understood and agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions.
12. HodgePodgeDays decision is final in all matters relating to this giveaway.

Review: Babyblooms gifts for new parents

When a new baby is born it’s usually a time for celebration. Friends and family rush round for a cuddle and often bring gifts for the new arrival. It’s a kind and thoughtful thing to do, but often it’s not always possible to visit or bring gifts straight away. Babyblooms are a company who have a lovely selection of original, beautiful and practical gifts online for delivery all over the world.

Although I’ve not got a new baby, I do like receiving presents. Babyblooms got in touch and wondered if I’d try out some of their pampering skincare products for Mums. They sent me the following items…

  • Replenishing hand cream
  • Soothing body lotion
  • Rejuvenating facial moisturiser
  • Lip rescue
  • Baby care cream

Babyblooms

My pampering presents came in a lovely keepsake box designed by Amanda Bradley and inside was a sachet of lavender and rose buds which was a nice touch.

Over a few days I tried all of the products out. It’s worth noting at this point that I have quite sensitive skin, especially on my face, so any products I use need to be as kind as gentle as can be. All of the Babyblooms products I received were made in the UK, are 100% natural and are cruelty free.

I’ve had a cold so my lips were dry and chapped, and my skin generally dehydrated and drab. The first product I tried was the lip rescue. A little pot of lip balm, an essential for your hospital bag, and something I use every day. Made from a blend of beeswax, calendula, olive oil, sweet almond oil and cardamom, this is a lovely lip balm which moisturises, soothes and really helped my dried, chapped lips.

Next up was the baby care cream, which is like aqueous cream. I used this every day on my dry elbows. I also used it on my five year old who is prone to dry skin, when his eczema patches are very bad I used this cream to wash him with too. It’s all natural, it smelt quite neutral and was easily absorbed.

One of my favourite products was the rejuvenating facial moisturiser. Described as a rich, restorative and detoxifying night time moisturiser, it was reasonably thick but was absorbed beautifully by my hungry skin. The skin on my face is so sensitive I was worried that this would make my skin red and itchy, but it didn’t and I was very impressed. It’s hard enough to find a high street moisturiser that my face can tolerate, so I was very impressed with this find. I’m definitely adding this to my Christmas list!

The replenishing hand cream contains refreshing lemongrass and moisturising jojoba. The cream had a soft lemon fragrance and was non-greasy. It’s a lovely light hand cream you could use every day. I found it nicely moisturising and I enjoyed the uplifting fragrance. You can never have too much hand cream when you’re a mum, constantly washing your hands after changing nappies, wiping bottoms and cooking and cleaning all takes it’s toll on your hands. I go through so much hand cream it doesn’t bear thinking about and it’s lovely to use one with such a refreshing fragrance.

Last but by no means least was the soothing body lotion. This was one of my very favourite products in the box. The lotion contains calendula, lavender and evening primrose. It smells absolutely beautiful and not too heavily of lavender which can be overpowering, this is just enough to help you wind down after a long hard day. Another one for my Christmas list!

The Babyblooms pampering products for mums are lovely, really well thought out and even now, as a veteran mum I would be delighted to receive a box of these treats through the post. There are so many gorgeous gifts for new parents and their babies on the Babyblooms website, and I love that you can send gifts all over the world, which is a helpful thing to know, especially as we have friends and family all over the world now.

For the full range of pampering products, or to view their gift range visit the Babyblooms website.

Note: I was sent the Babyblooms products for review. All images and opinions are our own.

Review: Razorun Wet Shaving Subscription Box

For men, the last few years seem to have been about sharp haircuts and big beards. I love a beard as much as the next woman, but there’s an awful lot to be said for a clean shaven man; men who make the effort every morning to look spiffy. With this in mind, I got my hirsute husband to try out a monthly subscription box for men – Razorun – everything you need for your daily wet shave.

Razorun

The first Razorun box contains a double edged safety razor, a shaving brush, blades, soap and a couple of mystery items. Our box contained some matches and a shaving towel. From your second box onwards you will receive aftershaves, soap, blades and more. There are several different payment options depending on the length of your subscription, but they start at £17.99 per month for 12 months.

Razorun

When we opened the box we found that it contained everything you’d need for a wet shave (apart from the water obviously). Fitting the blade into the razor was simple and after a hot shower, husband lathered up and got shaving.

There’s something special about watching a man have a wet shave. As I child I would stand at my father’s knee and watch him lather up and shave. It was one of our things, I’d sit, legs swinging on the bath while he shaved. We’d talk about everything under the sun whilst he carefully dragged the razor across his face. Even now I love to sit and watch a man shave.

Razorun

Using the synthetic brush and the soap provided he lathered up his face. It’s a moment of ritual in a shave that you don’t get when you’re squirting foam out of a can, so it felt a bit more special than usual.

The shave took him a bit longer than usual, I think he was being cautious with the new blade, he has a very contoured face and his beard grows quickly. The double edged razor was heavier than the modern razors he is used to,  but he liked the results and his face felt very smooth afterwards.

Razorun

I think the Razorun monthly subscription box is a lovely gift idea for men. Especially those men who like to do things the traditional way, shaving with proper shaving soap and a proper razor blade. Having a box of different shaving goodies sent each month is I think a lovely way of making a daily chore into something a bit nicer. 

As a woman who probably cares a bit more about skincare than her man, I’d like to see some manly moisturisers and calming aftershave balms in subsequent boxes. I know each month the products are hand selected, so maybe that’s something which may happen at a later date. No two months are the same, which is part of the fun.

With Father’s Day fast approaching, I like the idea of setting up a subscription for a monthly Razorun box for either my Dad or for husband. Giving them a monthly treat to help them tackle a daily chore will hopefully help to remind them that they’re appreciated year round, not just on 19th June 2016 (Father’s Day).

To get a discount on your Razorun subscription enter SMOOTHSHAVER at the checkout, this gives you 15% off your first order. For more information about Razorun and their monthly shaving subscription boxes, visit their website.

How to have a good wet shave

Anyone who has ever run a razor over their face or any part of their body knows that shaving without due care and attention can leave you with irritation, razor burn or little cuts. Here are some top tips for having a good wet shave.

  1. Get your face wet. Husband likes to have a shower and he exfoliates before he shaves so it is easier for him to shave.
  2. Use a good quality shaving soap, cream or oil. Find a product which suits you and your skin (lots of women use conditioner on their legs and in an emergency it’s ok to use on your face too).
  3. Use a good quality shaving brush – this will help get a good lather up and help lift the stubble making it easier to get a close shave.
  4. Change your razor blade regularly. A dull or blunt razor is more likely to give you razor burn and irritation. 
  5. Use hot water, run the razor under the hot tap to clean it whilst you are shaving, this stops it clogging up with gunk and leaves the razor clear to give you the smooth shave you want.
  6. Rinse and wash your face after shaving and then apply some soothing aftershave balm or a light moisturiser. 

If you follow these tips you should get a good shave. Do you have any shaving tips you can share?

Note: We were sent a subscription box from Razorun for review purposes. All images an opinions are our own.

A seriously good facial at Beauty Bee, Bramhall

When Beauty Bee opened in Bramhall a few months ago, I started to hear from friends how good it was. As something of a facial addict I decided to book myself in for a treat and to see if the buzz about Beauty Bee was correct.

Located at Moorend Golf Driving Range in Bramhall, it might at first glance seem to be an unconventional location for beauty treatments, but Beauty Bee offer a selection of deep tissue and sports massages to the golfers, as well as a full range of beauty and pampering treatments to non-sporting types too. Once you are in the Beauty Bee treatment room you’d never guess you were in a golf club and it has the benefit of having more than ample free parking too.

Beauty Bee

On arrival Abby greeted me and escorted me into her treatment room, it was warmly decorated and very comfortable. We sat and chatted about my skin and if it had any problems, then she left the room while I got undressed and I made myself comfortable on the treatment table. Abby wrapped me in towels and a blanket and offered to put the heated blanket on for me, but I was warm and comfortable enough without it.

I’d booked myself in for the Prescription Facial (£30) and Abby took a good look at my skin. It’s fairly normal, combination skin which is a bit dehydrated around the eyes and starting to show a bit of wear and tear (I am 40 this year so it’s time I started looking my age, if not acting it occasionally).

Abby explained that she would be using products from The Potion Shop, a Manchester based company who make organic and paraben free skincare products.

Beauty Bee

It was at this point I largely zoned out and just relaxed into my treatment. I was aware that for the best part of 45 minutes I was being pampered to death. My skin was exfoliated, massaged and treated to hot towels and lots of TLC. Towards the end of my facial, Abby applied a face mask and put chamomile and lavender soaked pads on my eyes whilst she gave my hands and forearms a massage. It was blissful.

My skin felt amazing and was really glowing. As you can see from the before and after photographs below, my skin is a much more even tone, it’s less shiny and I look incredibly relaxed afterwards.

Beauty Bee

The treatment lasted just under an hour and it was an excessively good pampering. Abby clearly loves her job and is very passionate about what she does. I can really recommend Beauty Bee and the prescription facial, I adored my treatment, the look on my face in the second photo is all you really need to know – I will definitely be booking to go back again soon!

SPECIAL OFFER: Maternity Mondays at Beauty Bee – 30% off all treatments if you are on maternity leave and book in on a Monday. 

Beauty Bee is at Moorend Golf Driving Range, 177 Woodford Rd, Bramhall, Stockport, Cheshire SK7 1QE Phone: 07876 032125. You can find Beauty Bee on Facebook. They also offer treatments on selected days at The University of Manchester.

Giveaway: Win soothing Nelsons Arnicare goodies

I have recently been extolling the virtues of Nelsons Arnicare Bath & Massage Balm in a blog post I wrote about dealing with chronic back pain. It’s a really lovely, pampering product and I can’t recommend it enough. I’m delighted that I’ve got some gorgeous Nelsons Arnicare goodies to give away to one lucky winner.

Nelsons Arnicare Bath & Massage Balm is a luxurious dual-purpose balm, it’s perfect for  massaging into tired muscles or pouring into a bath to create a gorgeous fragrance that will help you to relax and unwind. The natural properties of Arnica montana extract and sweet scents of Lavender and Grapefruit essential oils are ideal for calming the senses and melting away tension. It’s also enriched with Evening Primrose and Sweet Almond oil making it the perfect pampering treat. Nelsons Arnicare Bath & Massage Balm costs £8.55 and is available from a range of retailers including Boots.

Nelsons Arnicare

I’ve also got some Nelsons Arnicare Cooling Gel, which combines the well known benefits of arnica with refreshing natural grapefruit oil and menthol to cool and soothe the skin. The gel is ideal for rubbing into aching muscles following exercise or to revive tired, heavy legs after being on your feet all day.

Win Nelsons Arnicare goodies

To be in with a chance to win some lovely Nelsons Arnicare goodies, please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions:
1. The competition is open to residents of the UK only.
2. There is no cash alternative offered.
3. To enter, please use the rafflecopter widget above. Please ensure you leave some contact details or I will not be able to contact you if you win.
4. The winner will be drawn at random from all qualifying entries. The winner will receive some Nelsons Arnicare products.
5. The competition will close on 20th April 2016.
6. The winner will be asked to provide a full UK postal address with postcode for delivery purposes.
7. Address details will be passed onto an agency to post the prize out to the winners, and is therefore beyond my control. I cannot be held responsible for prizes being lost in the post although I will endeavour to liaise with the agency.
8. Your email address may be passed on to to the promoter for marketing purposes, you may unsubscribe at any time.
9. HodgePodgeDays decision is final in all matters relating to this competition.