Tesco Own Brand Maximum Hold Hairspray

To keep it short and sweet this hairspray is simply the best I’ve found.  At only 74p a can, and its a pretty big can, you wouldn’t expect much from it but if you’re a vintage loving girl this is the stuff for you. I have fine mid-length hair and this will hold a beehive constructed out of nothing much all day long, even if its a damp windy day. Great for taming fly-aways too.

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Workshops – Design your Own Fair Isle. Spring Knitting & Stitching Show, Olympia

When I saw that this workshop still had places available on Thursday I signed up straight away – this is how it was advertised:

“This workshop will give you the opportunity to design several pieces of Fair Isle knitting…” “…learn how to use grids to design [your] own patterns…” “…learn how to change colours and how colour choice determines the finished outcome.”

I imagined we’d be given yarn, needles, graph paper, a pencil, eraser and examples of traditional fair isle motifs and their meanings if relevant.  What we actually got was some graph paper, 4mm needles to borrow and some 4 ply yarn. No option to choose colours.  The only practical advice we were given was to only carry your alternate yarn choice for 3sts before twisting.

Because the needles she lent me were much too big for the yarn my attempt was pretty awful, I binned it as soon as I got it home.  My design wasn’t up to much either.  One of the other people produced the most gorgeous swatch but I think she must have used her own needles?

It was pretty useless as a workshop but nice to sit down for an hour in the middle of the Knitting & Stitching Show.

Next time I try fair isle I’ll use a Susan Crawford pattern.

OPI Avoplex nail and cuticle oil

I am a big fan of OPI products. I love Nail Envy, I just can’t be without it, my nails have been transformed from weak broken horrors to nails I am truly proud of.  Now Avoplex is doing the same for my cuticles and the tips of my fingers. Image

I was never quite sure what to do about my cuticles, they were never massive and hoary but still, a bit on the dry and raggedy side but I don’t get on with cuticle remover creams, they usually smell rank and do nothing much.  The tips of my fingers often have roughish patches of dry skin caused (I think) by the amount of crochet and knitting I do (I’m in the middle of an order for 9 snoods at the moment), the yarn running through my hands all the time but be what’s drying them out because I wear gloves outdoors as much as poss and I always always use a good quality handcream after I wash my hands.

Avoplex if used regularly – I aim for 2-3 times a day – makes such a big difference. My fingers are now soft and smooth and I don’t get sharp jaggedy bits on my cuticles. I do sometimes forget to use it but not for long. I keep a pot on the table by my seat at home, one on my desk at work and I carry a tube of Avoplex to Go in my handbag.  Image

You only need a little smidge on each finger and you can use it anywhere you have dry skin. Its avocado oil so don’t put in on before varnishing your nails, I tend to do it at breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Massaging it in is really nice, in fact my boyfriend even likes it because he does an awful lot of cycling so his hands take a bit of a bashing from the weather. I’m not a massive fan of the smell, but I have a friend who absolutely loves it and its a unisex smell so men shouldn’t be put off using it.  If it smelt of something nicer I’d give it 10/10. Other than that I can’t fault it, its not even expensive.

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter

wpid-20140203_071322.jpgMy all time favourite body lotion. It smells like white chocolate, its delicious and it means you leave the bathroom in a good mood.  Rub a bit extra in your dry bits and they’ll go away. I’ve never had irritated skin from shaving my legs after using this.  Its better than any premium brand I’ve ever used. Why pay more, you can get this anywhere, its a classic.

My top tip with this is that it’s much easier to work with when its warm so I put mine on the heated towel rail to warm it up while I’m in the shower, which is why the label looks so ropey in this picture.  In the summer you won’t need to do that at all, but when its cold it thickens up so you use a lot more of it if you don’t warm it up first.

It is thick but its not heavy, gloopy or greasy, it sinks into your skin fast, its easy to smooth over your skin and smells like a hug from your mum.

I have the lip balm too, but that’s not so good.

Dove Summer Glow Soft Shimmer body lotion

ImageI do like this, it does build a subtle colour, on me but naturally I’m a redhead so I never get a deep tan and it means gradual tan products like this don’t make a huge difference. So, I always go for the darker version because they have more oomph. 

I like this one, because it has sparkly bits in it and they make me happy. To be honest its not the best moisturiser I’ve used, it’d take a lot to wean me off Palmers Cocoa Butter but I don’t use that every day because it is quite rich. 

I would buy this again but mainly for the shimmer and the hint of colour, but I bet there is a better one out there. The smell isn’t that great either, not like cocoa butter which is my favourite.

Clarins Eye Contour Balm

images2TYOLJS0On the tube it very modestly claims to soften fine lines.  That’s it.  I’m so used to products promising the earth, the moon and the stars above I wouldn’t be too surprised to find an eye balm that offers to do your hovering.  Its a surprise to find something that does one thing and does that thing really well.

I love this, I bought it after talking to the salesperson which is not something I usually do because I hate having things sold ‘at’ me.  I think I’m going to have to rethink that standpoint though because if I hadn’t spoken to her I would have used far too much of this.  You really need the teensiest bit, about a millimetre or two that you pat below your eye and out over your crows feet. Once a day. I went for last thing at night but you can do it anytime.  You really don’t need to use it any more than that.

Quite simply it works. My eyes looks tons better for using this and the effects were fast.  My crows feet diminished rapidly and even now I’ve used it up they haven’t come back nearly so badly. I will definitely buy this again but I have another two eye products to use first.  Love it.

Because you only need to use a little bit it lasts for a long long time. I reckon I used my tube for a good six or seven months.  I’ve got a tip for you too. When you think it’s empty pop it in your handbag and let it rattle around I there freely for a couple of weeks and you’ll find there’s another week’s worth in there. 10/10