Skinbase microdermabrasion: perfect summer skin. Plus Beauty UK review & pictures of this week’s nail mail.


The most popular facial I offer is the Skinbase microdermabrasion facial. This facial can plump the skin, diminish the look of lines, wrinkles, acne scarring and pigmentation. It leaves skin lighter, brighter and super smooth. Bearing in mind I currently only do treatments  3 days a week, I do at least 2 of these facials per week. It is a year round treatment. In Summer it is perfect to treat pigmentation and dark spots, in Winter it is perfect to treat dull skin that needs some va va voom. In this blog post I aim to answer a few questions I am most frequently asked about the treatment.

What does this treatment involve? 

I start off by thoroughly cleansing the skin to remove all make up and oils. I use Eve Taylor Purifying Wash. I then make sure the skin is dry by gently blotting with a tissue. The Skinbase dermabrasion machine is then used to treat the whole of the face, neck, and if required the decollette. I’ve also been known to treat the back of clients hands where they get dark spots, pigmentation caused by the sun.We can target specific areas on the face such as acne scarring, deep lines or pigmentation.

The machine makes a low humming noise when it’s on which is rather soothing. The machine works by simultaneously using a vacuum action while dispensing crushed crystal onto the skin. The crushed crystal is a naturally occuring mineral called aluminium oxide. This helps to thoroughly exfoliate &  deeply cleanse the skin by removing dead skin cells, leaving fresh new skin.

The vacuum action takes away  excess crystals while encouraging blood flow to the surface of the skin. Encouraging the blood flow to this area allows your skin to naturally heal itself by promoting cell renewal , as well as having a plumping action.

The dermabrasion itself takes around 15-20 minutes. This is then followed by  the application of Eve Taylor Soothing Masque to nourish the skin and calm any redness.

The facial is then finished off with a spritz of soothing tonermoisturiser and Solar Shield SPF 25. While the masque is on I like to give clients a hand and arm massage with a lovely hand cream to relax them, and make it more luxurious.

What does it feel like?

The microdermabrasion itself is very relaxing, it does not hurt. The crystals are very gentle. I often start by letting clients feel it on the back of their hand so they know what to expect.

Afterwards the skin may feel tingly, warm and have a slight redness. All of which dissapears within 24 hours. Most clients don’t even get any of the above.

How long does the treatment take?

Including consultation, around 30 minutes. It is the perfect lunch break facial.


Who is it best suited for?

Anyone who wants fresher, younger looking skin or has specific skin concerns which need targeted.

How often is this facial required?

This facial can can be booked as a one off a few days before a big event, as make up looks amazing applied to super smooth, plumper skin.

For specific skin concerns such as acne scarring or pigmentation an initial course of 1 facial per week for 5-6 weeks is recommended followed up by monthly maintenance appointments. During a course of microderambrasion the machine settings are gradually changed each week to improve results.

If you don’t have specific skin concerns but want to keep your skin in good condition I recommend this treatment every 4-6 weeks.


Is there anything I should be doing at home to maintain the results of the facial?

In the first 48 hours after treatment it is essential to apply a soothing moisturiser and sun protection cream to hydrate and protect skin. Avoid any exfoliating &  anti ageing products in this time frame. Moisturiser should be applied a minimum of twice per day. A non irritating soothing moisturiser should be available to purchase from your therapist.

Therapist overview: I find this treatment amazing, you can see visible results instantly. Compared to other facial electrical machines I have been trained to use in the past, this one is relatively simple. You need minimal products in order to carry out the treatment. The cost per service is quite high but the customer service, training and marketing support from Skinbase is amazing.

I have used this company for approximately 3 years now and I can’t fault them. Initially they sent the trainer out to the salon,  if you choose to go for the rental option then  training is free, and start up costs are minimal. Now I am home-based and mobile they have changed my machine FOC in order for me to be able to offer the treatment mobile.

I would advise doing a minimum of 2 of these facials per month to cover the price of the machine and the products used. In my last order from them I received some chocolate, it was a lovely touch, and helped me when I hit the 4pm energy crash I normally experience. The continued marketing support I receive includes Facebook banners, posters, regular emails and I can pick up the phone or email at any time and speak with an expert for treatment or equipment advice.

If I had to cut down my treatment menu for any reason, this would be the ‘stayer’ out of my facial menu. The results speak for themselves, and clients who try it once always return for another.



Beauty UK held @ Birmingham NEC review

We are slap bang in the middle of show season. I never got to Beauty UK, but luckily my fabulous friend did. Jo Stebbens is the owner of Premier Beauty Training. Based in Milton Keynes Jo is a mum of 2 and a therapist herself. She teaches beauty courses round her current clientèle. She is hoping to take her business to the next level and went to the annual beauty trade show held in Birmingham to see what caught her eye. Here is her review below:

‘So it’s a very rare day that I get to go out on my own child free! I haven’t been to a beauty show for a couple of years, so I thought I would pop along to Beauty UK in Birmingham. My first port of call was to the Ink stand. I’ve been using Ink products for about a year, I use it to train with as well as on my clients. I had a long list of colours I wanted to get, so knew it wasn’t going to be a cheap day out!! I met Angie Gunter and had a chat, I also had a brief chat with Chrissy. They were all so friendly and helpful. I was lucky I got there when I did as the stand was really busy after that!


Ink London stall

With my Ink haul purchased, I headed over to Nail Artists UK, their range of glitters, gel and acrylic powders is simply mind boggling! They also have a lovely selection of wraps and foils. A glitter top coat was what I was after, but unfortunately they hadn’t brought any with them, so I feel an online order coming on!


Beauty Select was next on my list. They distribute Callus Peel, which is an amazing treatment. I had run out of a few bits so stocked up on those. I then walked past Cuccio. I love their range of pedicure products. Lots of yummy different fragrances and products including scrubs and body butters. I bought a stainless steel foot file with replacment pads. I prefer these to the rasp style files you can get.

There was a new addition to the show that wasn’t there last time I went, which was literally crawling with people: Magpie Beauty. So many glitters you don’t know what to do with yourself or where to look first. They are simply stunning! I was tempted to add to my collection, but truthfully I have shelves full of glitter and would more than likely be doubling up if I bought anymore! Maybe next time!!


Magpie Glitters: so blingy

I stopped at Lycon Wax where I watched a demo of their hot wax. I was quite interested in this, as I currently use PHD warm wax, and I’m looking for an alternative. I then noticed that tanning company       Sienna X had brought out a wax depilatory system. It seems like every company wants to get in on everything at the moment!

I noticed that the cosmetic company ‘Younique’ had a stand too, and ‘Forever Living’. I’m not sure how I feel about these companies exhibiting at a beauty show. The whole MLM thing doesn’t sit well with me, also the use of these products in a beauty salon just doesn’t have that ‘professional salon only’ that I like from companies such as CND & Ink who only sell to pros.

Other stands I stopped at included Megamix and Magnetic Nails. Megamix have been around for a while now. I like it because you can turn a normal polish into gel, or create your ow mix from glitter and pigments. Magnetic nails is  company I have only come across in the past week. They are plugging a new ‘airbrush’ manicure at the moment, although it doesn’t look much different to the old airbrush designs you could get on extensions.

I stopped briefly at the NSI demo table, where the familiar face of Gemma Lambert-Lewis was doing what she does best!!


Gemma Lambert-Lewis from the Nail Team demoing for NSI

I was fairly disappointed with the show overall. There was nothing that really stood out for me and no amazing new treatments/trends that I thought “I must offer that!”. However, I did manage to buy the products I wanted so it wasn’t a complete waste!!’


Jo’s haul from Beauty UK


Nail Mail this week was a delivery from Glitterarty. This is a newer discovery of mine, you may have noticed in my last blog post a delivery from them. I have a lot of wedding nails coming up so I purchased a few of their ‘bubbles’ glitters to work into the nail design.


I specialise in Rockstar nails. Basically I incorporate glitter into gel manicures. I have a huge glitter collection (and addiction) and like to see it grow. These glitters are really eye catching, and I can’t wait to use them.

My nails this week are finished with Lecente’s Mortar and Waterfall both from the Fireworks collection. Both purchased and featured in my Creative Play Blog. I am completely in love with Mortar. I am wearing it over a bright blue  but it would also look amazing over a purple. The Fireworks collection is by far the most sparkly collection from Lecente, and is my favourite collection so far. #lovelecente


Mortar is gorgeous.

Have you had microdermabrasion before? What did you think? Did you go to Beauty UK this year? What did you purchase? Leave any questions or comments below,

until next time, sparkle on,

Jo x

mummy moments: note to self no.1, never leave a beauty couch roll near a toddler. He was like the Andrex puppy.



note to self no.2 : stop eating the kids crisps


Mum’s healthy lunch.

Note to self no.3:don’t leave your make up lying around as the toddler likes the taste of it waaay too much!


a healthy snack for the 1 year old:a beauty blender covered in foundation

Scottish hair & beauty show 2016 review: mum’s on tour.


At the weekend I managed to dust down my wheely trolley case and hit the town. My friend Caroline and I headed to Edinburgh where we met up with Sara Crawford & Kristina MacIntyre from Famous Pout in Prestwick. We planned to hit the Scottish hair and beauty show held annually in Ingilston at the Royal Highland Centre. It allows professional brands, distributors and training companies to showcase new products, trends & courses available. There are 2 live stages showing demo’s over the 2 days covering different aspects of the hair and beauty trade supported by a good seminar programme. It meant I could pull the excuse to my husband ‘it’s for my work’ (but really I cram in as much drinking and giggling girl time I can).

All you mums out there  will know, going away for an overnight is a BIG deal, and takes weeks, even months of military precision, timing and organisation. Pre preparation took a week’s worth of beauty treatments (and yes – I even got rid of the winter coat & waxed my legs!!)- hair colouring, tanning and a new outfit to boot. I asked my hubby to get me a wheely case, to which request he proudly responded by presenting me with a huge trolley case suitable for a week’s stay abroad. A minor disagreement ensued as I whined ‘that’s way too big for just 1 overnight, I’m  not trailing that round Edinburgh’. He insisted I would need it. I soon had to hang my head in shame as I managed to fill it. Whoops. I managed to wave off my hubby and the  children without too much of a drama, although my middle child was slightly huffed that I was getting to stay at a hotel and she had to stay at home, so she kept telling me that ‘her and daddy will have a ‘jama party and your not invited’.

Below is a few captioned pictures of what I had on my nails for Edinburgh. Hover over the picture for more information on the products I used.


Edinburgh was busy and vibrant, the trip there was enjoyable. We arrived at our hotel to discover it had been overbooked, so we ended up staying in The Sheraton, which was beautiful. We got complimentary breakfasts and taxis there and back. We spent lunch at an authentic Italian eating home-made pasta, and finished off the afternoon having a few too many drinks, while catching up with Hayley, my husband’s cousin who part-owns a lovely coffee and cake shop called Strumpets on William Street. If you’re ever in town check it out.



Hayley from Strumpets in Edinburgh

Like most mums who  are out of practice, I had to give up on the cocktails around 9pm as I was feeling a little worse for wear. By 9pm when we arrived at Thai resteraunt Dusit on Thistle Street, I had shamefully switched to water. My cousin Katie is studying events management at uni in Edinburgh, and she joined us for dinner and dancing. She was telling me about a football festival she is organising for July and wanted to know if I possibly would come and do nails for a day or 2 over the length of the festival. I quite enjoy these kind of events and its a good excuse to go back so I’ve earmarked it as a possibility.

I was feeling quite proud that I switched to water at 9pm, I was able to stay up dancing until 1am. Apart from getting up for night feeds, its the latest I have been up in a very long time. I was hyper aware I had to work the next day, although if you asked my friend Caroline, she would tell you I wouldn’t shut up and go to sleep, at 1.30am I was still up chattering. Whoops.

After a lovely breakfast at the Sheraton we headed to St.Andrews Square to catch the free bus to the Beauty show. It runs backwards and forwards all day ferrying vistors to and from the show. I didn’t find the bus busy, which is a shame as it is a lovely touch for the organisers to provide.

Upon entering the show the first 2 stands that caught my eye was Lycon and Fake Bake, both of which were doing a roaring trade. Lycon spent most of the day doing live demos with their hot wax, which really did look less painful than strip wax. The models did not flinch and it seemed to be lifting even really short hairs. Apparently it can lift hairs as short as 1mm. Amazing! Although you could purchase Lycon wax at the show, to be able to have an account with them you must do their training and learn the ‘Lycon’ way. I am currently looking into hot wax training for this year , and after seeing them at the show it will be a toss up between Lycon and Waxperts. If any of you have done the training or have any experiences of any of the above wax brands that you would like to share please comment below.

Fake Bake were doing a roaring trade. The stand was never quiet, the girls there were all super friendly and welcoming. It was a very eye catching stand with dashes of pink to match the logo. There are a lot of very exciting things happening at Fake Bake HQ just now. I plan at a later stage to write another blog piece about it. The team were offering slots in their ‘VIP’ lounge where customers could come and discuss with their experts ways in which Fake Bake can help them further their business.



I stock Eve Taylor products and use them for facials, so I quickly stopped past the stand to have a quick chat with Matt Taylor. They were not selling at the show, but were giving out a code that could be used to order online from your registered account.

A rising trend at shows is to demo the products, but not actually sell , this is to try and avoid the general public being able to purchase them. I can see why you would want to protect your brand and keep it exclusively for professionals but its not the same going to the show and not excitedly getting to unwrap your purchases at home afterwards. Is it just me or is some of the fun missing when you can’t purchase your fave brands at a show?



Talking the hind legs off  Matt Taylor at the Eve Taylor stand. I hope I didn’t scare him too much.

The Ink London stand was buzzing. I got to meet the lovely Joanna MacIntyre and Chrissy Scott, both ladies have a real passion for the brand and the nail industry, which shone through as they chatted about the show, products and recommending colours to purchase to add to my collection. I would say the Ink team was by far the most friendly. The girls were smiling and chatty and willing to help. I’m going to ear mark Ink London as ‘the one to watch’. With an amazing Facebook following, a fab price point and an amazing range of colours, Ink is definitely a rising star within the industry.

I  have been a hardcore CND girl for the last 6 years, but have recently added a small collection of Ink London ilac polishes to run alongside  CND Shellac. My clients have been loving the new colours available, and I have enjoyed experimenting with brighter colours and some lovely glitters from the range too. My only complaint here is that I never got to meet the ever talented Tracey McGoogan from Notorious Nails in Coatbridge, whose work I have been following recently thanks to her #blingky (bling pinkie) trend that seems to be everywhere at the moment.


The Ink stand was buzzing


I stopped past to watch the nail tech competition area, which seemed to have a good turn out. Winners of the competitions can be found here. The boxed nail art competiton theme was ‘Ibiza’. I’ve attached a few of the entries, some of which were all singing  all dancing, with lights and lots of detail, all of which were amazing. I can’t believe the amount of work that must go into them. It is without a doubt a form of art.



My purchases included ilac colours , ijel, Rose cuticle oil, some lovely neon dots, cuticle nippers and a mermaid glitter all from Ink London. I also bought a Moyou stamping kit which I cannot wait to play with. I got to pick 6 plates, 6 polishes including diamanté, scraper, stamper and a pen for tidying round the cuticle. It all came presented in a cute box which is perfect for my mobile work. The girl at the Moyou stand took her time demoing the stamper, and she didn’t seem to mind having to repeat herself when Sara and Kristina arrived to have a look too, so kudos to her for that. I also purchased a new tunic from La Beeby which had some very pretty colours and styles in. They had a clever way of marketing, they collected your email address via an ipad at the cashier’s desk. While she rang up my purchase I entered my email address which instantly sent me an email with a 10% discount code for La Beeby and entered me into their database. Very clever. A trip to the show wouldn’t be complete without a consumer novelty purchase. So glitter lips it was.


my haul.


Sara uses a mixture of Gelish, CND Shellac, and more recently Ink London so her purchases mainly consisted of a mixture of Acrylink, Kinky Glitters and Ilac, all from the Ink London stand.


Sara @ Famous Pout’s purchases

Kristina‘s purchases included an Adam & Eve hot wax kit (not pictured). She had spied them at last year’s show and the range of different and unusual scents had caught her eye, so this year she took the plunge and bought a starter kit. Her other purchases included some Lauren’s Way tan, the Moyou stamping kit, some Acrylink from Ink London and a Revel lash salon stand which featured an array of strip lashes in different lengths and thicknesses.


Kristina @ Famous Pout, Prestwick’s purchases.

Sara said ‘I thought the show was a great first experience, being able to see first hand how many brands there are available & how passionate people are about hair and beauty. Next year I would like to see some bigger named brands within the make up industry and more tanning brands’.

Kristina also felt a few key brands were missing such as NSI. I myself miss the little bus that used to ferry us up and down to the Fingertips Centre. The show doesn’t feel complete without my CND purchases.

The hair side of the show seems to be getting bigger every year. Between the competitions, the live stage and seminar programme, there was plenty for the hair professional too.

Next year I would like to see some more of the missing nail brands we love, and more food carts please. The queue for food was long and tiring when you’re slightly  hungover and needing a carb fix asap. The prosecco and cupcake bar was a nice touch but I needed bread. The panini and chocolate brownie I did have was lovely (when I eventually got it).

I think we should stop writing off the Scottish show as ‘small’ or  ‘irrelevant’ and start promoting it. Scotland can be a forgotten part of the UK when it comes to the beauty industry  but with some amazing training venues, and exceptionally talented professionals available right here we should not be ignored!!! In fact I will make it my mission that we shall not be ignored!! #mummysonamission

The show was fun, well organised, and friendly. I struggled to get round it all in one day so shall be stretching my stay over 3 days next year if I can.

Special mentions go to: Steve and the Team at Dreamweave, his passion for his brand is amazing. He was filling me in on a few very exciting things that are happening at his HQ, some of which include a TV advert and an amazing lip gloss that will be an excellent retail opportunity for salons. Another special mention goes to the staff who actually ran the event. Every single one of you that I met from car park attendants, the bus drivers , to the ticket booth clerks were exceptionally helpful & polite.

Did anyone else attend the show? What did you purchase? How did you find it compared to previous years? Leave your comments below.

Until next time, sparkle on

Jo x

mummy moments:

listening to hubby trying to get the toddler to say ‘mum’. Instead he kept making mooing sounds like a cow. #mummyproblems

hiding in the kitchen eating wotsits while the kids eat their healthy snack of fruit #badmummy

getting home from Rhyme Time to discover what suspiciously looks like baby boogar stuck just above my eyebrow #mummyproblems