It's also worth mentioning that Helen is partially to blame for my ridiculous obsession with all things Nars at the moment. My bank account does not thank Helen for this.
Moving swiftly on!
Can you talk me through your daily skin care regimen, which products you use and why?
OK. I’m hoping that the majority of you don’t put the phone down on me right away here, but I don’t really have a skin care regime. Eeeek!
I have chronic psoriasis and as a result have to be extremely careful with what I choose to put on my skin. I’m not one of those bloggers who you’ll ever see reviewing reams of skin care products because, quite frankly, I’m too scared. I don’t want to use anything that might upset the balance of my skin and that’s that. So, as a result, I remove my make-up with Tesco unfragranced baby wipes (I know, I know) and have a quick rinse with cold water. Once a week or so I apply a Montagne Jeunesse face mask and I’ll occasionally use Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish but not too often. I’m not much of a one for moisturiser but I do drink a lot of water though.
So you might not want to kiss my face when you meet me, but hey - it works for me, it’s cheap, and I tell you one thing as well – I get approximately one spot every six months. God knows what I’ll look like when I’m 80 though.
Phew. That felt a bit confessional. Forgive me, beauty addicts but I have sinned. Every day.
What shampoo and conditioner are you devoted to?
I love to try out new shampoos and conditioners but again, like the skincare thing, it’s kind of hit and miss as to what will work for me and what won’t. Some things make my scalp crawl, and others are great. I’m a big fan of anything by Tigi, and I’ve also recently discovered a brand called Healthy Sexy Hair and I love their stuff too. MOP is brilliant as it contains no parabens or sulphates but I find need a change once in a while.
What about your top three make up brands generally speaking?
1) Nars. Anyone who follows me on Twitter will be aware of my predilection for Nars. This is a proper obsession. I mean, who else was crazy enough to do a post featuring 28 Nars EOTDs? (http://www.just-nice-things.co.uk/2011/02/21/the-story-so-nars/) I can’t stop myself from buying their eyeshadows – it is a slippery slope.
2) Illamasqua. A proper British brand, which launched around the same time as Just Nice Things was starting out. I am in awe of their ethos, marketing, products and team. I’ve always felt a lot of synergy with the brand and I was lucky enough to have Halimah from Illamasqua do my wedding make-up last year.
3) OK so it’s not strictly make-up but I have to say OPI here. The reason the blog was born. I have more OPIs than any other brand of nail varnish. I love their colours, names and quality. I love a lot of other nail varnishes as well (you may be aware of this), but I always reach first for an OPI and get ridiculously over excited every time they launch a new collection.
Ok some specifics now!
What is your favourite foundation and why?
Youngblood mineral foundation without a shadow of a doubt. I resisted wearing foundation up until last year as my skin was always clear and I didn’t really feel I “needed” it. Also, I loathe the slappy wet feeling of liquid foundation on my skin, and what love about Youngblood is that it’s light, finely milled and a little goes a long way. I was introduced to Youngblood and it really is “my skin but better” and it doesn’t irritate me in the slightest. I reviewed it here (http://www.just-nice-things.co.uk/2011/04/20/youngblood-mineral-foundation/) recently and someone actually accused me of airbrushing my face in Photoshop (which I honestly hadn’t – I don’t even have Photoshop) So that’s good enough for me.
What is your favourite mascara and why?
Max Factor Masterpiece Max. I remember getting my first one in a Christmas stocking one year and I’ve been a slave to it ever since. I must have used it for about a decade now? I adore big fat lashes and I love the way that the brush is the right size, and that the content doesn’t clump but is thick enough to build and isn’t soaking wet. I hate wet oily mascaras that are all slippy and don’t dry. I always think a mascara is at its best stage after it’s been open for about a month, and Masterpiece Max has the perfect consistency as far as I am concerned.
What one product do you think every cosmetic aficionado should have in their collection?
A good highlighter. I swear Nars Albatross changed my life. Instant cheekbones and a shimmery lift that just makes your face glow (in a good way, not in a sweaty way). I also use it as an under-eyebrow highlighter every single day, sometimes adding a dab of Illamasqua’s Breathe pigment for added glimmer if I so desire.
I also think anyone who paints their nails needs a quick drying topcoat. There’s no way I’d ever have survived the first week of establishing myself as a nail blogger (changing my polish daily) without having something to take the pain out of waiting for something to dry. And I don’t even think that Seche Vite is the best one out there, but you’ll have to read this post (http://www.just-nice-things.co.uk/2010/10/25/quickdry-topcoat-comparison/) to find out more about that...
I love finding new blogs so please before you go, please recommend three of your favourite bloggers.
I’ve recently gone back to avidly reading the blogs that inspired me to start Just Nice Things all that time ago:
http://www.body-soulbeauty.com/ Mary is one of the kindest people I know and her blog always keeps me entertained of a lunch hour
http://nixxysnails.blogspot.com/ Nixxy is the most talented writer I know. Go for the nail reviews, stay for her hilarious writing.
http://getchanailsdid.blogspot.com/ Brooke is one of the original and best nail bloggers. And she’s back blogging again, which makes me so happy.
Oooh thanks Helen! There's one blog there I don't already follow so I'm off to follow now! I'm also off to google Youngblood. Sounds nice and although I'm drowning in foundations at the moment, my sister is after a new mineral foundation...and I'm saying nothing about your skincare regime!
Thanks for taking part, it's been a pleasure.
As always, if you'd like to take part, just drop me a line to email@example.com.