January 06, 2012


The midwinter cold and especially the wind play merry freaking havoc with the face and hair I find.

At the risk of making my skin requirements sound like local council tarmac repairs, this time of year some extra maintainance is required.

Eve Lom cleanser. I can only afford this once a year (thank you santa!), and every year it is a renewed joy to clean my face at the end of the day. It is strange smelling - not unpleasant at all, just slightly straw-like, and has a paste-ish consistency. But once you have rubbed it on your face and washed it off with a hot cloth, the softening, silkening, super-clean effects are just blissful! At night I put on a bit of rose oil afterwards, and my face loves me.
Garnier Miracle Skin Protector . The wonders of this £10ish tinted-serum-come-foundation has been hyped up all over the web, and I was so very sceptical. Probably because my fair skin gets a bit pasty looking in winter I have wasted more money on gruesome, drying, orangey, are-you-trying-to-highlight-my-crowsfeet foundations than I care to remember. This stuff though - honestly, crossmyheart - it really is light and smoothing and flattering. It doesn't offer much in terms of coverage, but it really does seem to have a soft-focus effect on the less desirable aspects of my skin. Or maybe my hyperventilating at finally finding a brilliant foundation fogged the mirror, it is possible.

Lipstick is all very well, and does look astoundingly glamourous on some women. But, I am very fair skinned and quite generously mouthed and frankly bright lipstick just wears me, I feel like my lips arrive in a room a few seconds before the rest of me! My teeth often suddenly look a horrible colour and my other facial features, particularly my eyes, seem to fade into the shadows of my cartoon mouth. Eeek! Plus it lands on any cheeks I kiss (and my husband avoids a random smooch when I wear it which is a downer!), cups I drink out of, clothes I take off over my head and worst of all my own teeth and that really is a grim look! It is just mucky stuff to me. So if I go out I wear lipgloss instead, I think it is subtle and sexy, and when I see other people wearing it, I usually think how great it looks. Loads of brands do fab ones, Juicy Tubes by Lancome are the benchmark for lovely hues but there are plenty of cheaper ones that have a nice creamy texture, not all that wet gloss look of yore. Maybelline cream gloss is a good example. And it doesn't mark your teeth, or your wine glass so horribly. And your partner will risk kissing you.

But for really totally kissable lips, lipbalm is the thing. I have a kind of nostalgic affection for the old chapstix (that smell reminds me of my young teen years), and vaseline, but there are so many lovely lipbalms out there, that properly nourish and smooth. My favourites are tubes of Clarins lipbalm, Kiehls and also Smith's rosebud salve - they just make lips so soft and unchappy, and have a faintest hue that adds that little bit more natural looking colour to the face. I also avoid the tins, they look so sweet and retro but they get so pesky to open, and constantly sticking your fingers in can't be hygienic can it?

The Clarins tube is a bit more expensive, but it stays on really well I find, and is a wonderful texture. For really sore lips Elizabeth Arden's 8 hour cream is miraculous but it is a bit super shiny/vaseline-y for me to choose for glamming up reasons alone. Clarins, Kiehl's or Smith's I wear  pretty permanently throughout the winter, especially walking the dog (much better than lipgloss which does tend to weld wisps of hair to the lips in a wind!), and whenever I am popping out into the cold. Even indoors, when the central heating is pumping, a little regular application never goes amiss, and no-one shrinks from my kisses as they would in lippy. Result. So, wear and be proud. and kissable at all times.


small stone 6 
Unsettled suddenly by that gormless, vacant stare of tv watching spreading miasma-like across my young child's face.


  1. Loved this post, loads of handy info and witty words too, you really made me laugh with your descriptions, lol! xx

  2. Sadly SmallerBean has discovered my stash of (3) Juicy Tubes and is frequently spied sporting rather shiny lips and talking without moving her mouth. Still love vaseline and also eve lom lip balm. Need to seek out Garnier miracle cream. There won't be any othe skin miracles to be seen! Ax

  3. Tina, glad you laughed!

    A, oh my, Eve Lom lip balm, *hyperventilating again* - why have I never tried this?

  4. Ha! Steaming up your mirror with your hyperventilating breath! You're great!

    Oh and I look like a drag queen in lipstick. Never a wise move. X

  5. Lovely post - love Kiehls lip balm too. Ask the birthday fairy for Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Complex - it is my super product! xx

  6. Alice - ha, i'm the same, it just looks too garish!

    Coriden, helloooo! cosmetics, i hooked you in, yeah!! Is that E L product the one in the brown bottle? I have wanted to try it for about 15 years! Is it wonderful?

  7. I love Smith's lip balm but only ever able to find in tins which, like you, I avoid. Where can I get those tubes??? I hate lipstick on myself for the same reasons as you and can't wear lipgloss - the only stuff I wear is a frosted beige lipstick that I slap on all the time!

    Love Eve Lom cleanser too. And Santa brought me some L'Occitane Divine serum and cream which is truly divine... A new fave (I'm trying not to hold a grudge against Santa for surprising me with anti-ageing face products....)

    Nicki xx

  8. Ps going to try the Garnier stuff.... Nice tip off! X

  9. Nicki, they are from amazon, so happy to find the tube version!x

  10. No wait,the tin of Rosebud Salve is my BFF no matter the season.

    I am never without it. Unhygienic? Dunno. Love it though.

    And I'm sporting a Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer this winter. I think it's doing its thing. Eye cream tho' that's my question. Must be affordable but magical. Anybody got anything?

  11. Great post! I'm a bit of a lipsalve collector, I can't resist, them but was SO disappointed to find the famous Juicy Tubes so sticky! I felt my lips were sticking together, give me back my chapstick.... Jane x

  12. I used to have all sorts of dried out problems in winter, my daughter has got me on to RMK, a Japanese make, smells divine and very kind to English skin. Eve Lom lip balm still a favourite though. As ancient as I am I still love a girly chat about skin products.

  13. the winter is playing havoc with my skin too, but rather than pale my skin goes a very unkind red and angry looking. currently trying bio oil as someone recommended it's supermoisturizing properties.

  14. So many new things to try. I've been an Olay Regenerist fan for several years now, but always looking for something better. Huge admission ... am getting a peel next week. Can't decide if I feel terribly decadent or terribly desperate!

  15. Yes you got me! I am such a sucker for beauty stuff.

    Yes it is the EL stuff in the brown bottle. It is great for when your skin needs a boost i.e. after illness, a term of school runs, hormones etc. It is pretty magical - shrinks pores, soothes red dry patches, brightens... A little bit goes a long way and it works quickly too!

  16. Happy New Year Belinda... it has taken me a week to catch up with everyone!
    I have pale skin and have tried most of the products you mention. I always end up going back to Liz Earle. Just looking at her own skin makes me think that her stuff must work! xx

  17. I'm completely sucked in by that foundation....I shall be buying some. You should get commission!!!

    By the way, I'm LOVING your small stones.