To Beauty infinity and beyond. 2018 the year of the cuffed nail

So 2017, what was that all about? We managed to have a baby in February, sell our old  house (which had become a bit crowded) in a record time of 5 weeks and buy a new one in September, all whilst coming off maternity and surviving Christmas as a now family of 6. We have just celebrated this little superstar’s 1st birthday.

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our youngest has just turned 1

Trying to tidy and prepare a house for viewings with 4 children in tow nearly killed me, I was almost a quivering wreck in the corner. We were happy to get it sold quickly to lower my stress levels. Thanks to family we mastered the art of speed packing and got moved with not too much hassle. Although both mums are probably still trying to recover from us staying for a week or 2 while we started decorating the new place. 2017 was a whirlwind, our son who is 2 was taken into hospital a few times shortly after Arya was born with breathing difficulties, so he is now being treated as an asthmatic and doing a lot better, although we won’t know for definite until he is older if he is a true asthmatic. It doesn’t run in the family, so its bit of a mystery why he is the way he is.

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the trials of trying to sell your house as a mum of 4: rubbing pencil marks off the walls.

 

Meanwhile in the work world I am in limbo. My nail desk is currently sat in the dining area, I am doing a bit of work in my kitchen and mobile. However long term this won’t work for me, so I’m now looking at other options which I will update you all on in a later post. I have started adding to my kit slowly as I break myself in ‘gently’ since coming off maternity. I recently bought the Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Palette Volume 1. I do mainly bridal and wedding guest make up, this is the perfect palette to mix and customise shades to suit any skin tone. It comes with 18 matte shades, a mixing palette and scraper. Its perfect for any artists kit as those 18 shades can be blended to make even more colour options.

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How beautiful is the purple shade, even on its own though?? The fact it is ‘volume one’ is exciting as it means there could be more ‘volumes’ to follow.

I also purchased some of my favourite lip pencils from Mac in shades : Kiss Me Quick (a deep red), In Anticipation (a pink brown tone), Dark Out (a dark brown/red) and Nothing Sexier ( a peachy nude).

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For my nail kit this month I have just purchased the CND Shellac Nude collection for Spring 2018. Nudes featured heavily at Paris Fashion Week. These 4 beautiful shades teamed with Lecente glitter in white gold iridescent will be perfect for this time of year. For good measure I also added Lecente Rose superholo as its just so sparkly and pretty that I couldn’t resist.

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Cuffed nails seem to be everywhere at the moment, I gave it a go for the first time using a deep blue Ink London gel polish and gold glitter. Its pretty straight forward to do but next time I would leave a cuff all the way around the nail instead of just in the cuticle area. I did the usual rockstar style nail, sealed with one layer of top coat then painted over the top using the blue leaving the glitter cuff on show. I then sealed it all with top coat. Its going to be a popular trend as its simple but effective, and can be done in various colour ways.

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This months Glossy Box came up trumps with 5 gifts I will actually use. I have had to fend off my teenage daughter though as she had her eyes on the Steve Laurant lip balm. The box itself is pretty, it’s now stuffed full of Niamh’s LOL surprise dolls and accessories. This is my first ever subscription beauty box and it was surprisingly good!

I have been looking into various training courses for this year. Working on my own its easy to find myself a bit lonely and unmotivated as I have no one to bounce ideas off. Regular training helps me stay focused and work on any skills that may be lagging whilst staying up to date within the industry. First stop on my hit list is lash skills. I will keep you all updated whilst I research my options. I have one training company in particular I am keen to work with as their work inspires me. I should know more later on this week.

Last but not least is a call out to all my fellow professionals to check out Lisa’s Army. Lisa Wells is a former nail technician and trainer for Ink London who was diagnosed with terminal liver and bowel cancer when her second daughter was only 5 weeks old.  I have been following her story and her campaign to help raise money to secure the future for her 2 young daughters. As a mother I have found her story heart-breaking. Her strength and courage is inspiring and can be seen via her vlog style updates on the Lisa’s Army Facebook page. In honour of Lisa Ink London have released a glitter called ‘Lisa’s Army’. It costs £5 and the full £5 goes straight to Lisa’s campaign. It can be purchased here. I urge you all to buy it in support, not only is it a beautiful  and versatile iridescent pink, it’s also for a fabulous cause. Please do check it out.

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Ink London ‘Lisa’s Army’ glitter

My blog wouldn’t be complete without a few mummy moments so here you go: enjoy.

Until next time: sparkle  on,

Jo x#

mummy moment 1~ catching your son planning to ‘paint’ with your favourite Morphe x Jaclyn Hill eye palette #unhandthepaletteson

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mummy moment 2~ when your daughter makes the dog a collar which he sports for days until it disintegrates after being rained on #shesnowtakingorders #paperplatecollar

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mummy moment 3~ being nicknamed ‘mummy monster’ as I desperately try and rejuvenate my tired sleep deprived skin while multitasking folding laundry and refereeing the kids #mummymonster

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CND Creative Play: Review and news from this past week.

 

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A ‘Jo-moment’ in the form of a pink rinse kick started my week.

Last weekend,  the hubby and I joined friends for an overnight in Glasgow. My friend was turning 30 and we decided we were in need of some pre-birthday debauchery in the form of drinking, eating & laughing. We had a fab time, I was still recovering 3 days later. When I returned home to my mountains of washing I realised that if I had stayed just one more day I would have made it to the official launch of CND Creative Play at The Centre in Glasgow, with live demos from the ever fabulous Fee Wallace.

Creative Play is the brand new polish line by CND. The polishes come in over 80 different colours, and consists of different finishes including- glitter,pearl,shimmer,cream,satin,pearl and transformer. I didn’t have too worry too much as Fee used the new feature on Facebook called ‘Facebook Live’ and went global with her 45 minute live video demonstrating different looks that can be achieved using the new lacquer line. For those of you who missed it, it can be viewed here.

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I thought the live broadcast was an amazing idea. Stuck for childcare that day I wouldn’t have made it to the launch, but I didn’t have to. I could watch live from my mobile device which I could move from room to room while I watched my toddler go on a one man whirlwind of toy destruction. I could even interact by adding comments at the bottom, which Fee worked through over the following days answering every single one. Amazing!!! I am completely in favour of more broadcasts like this. So well done to Fee and the girls at the Centre for pulling it off.

So let’s get down to business. Me being me I had to order some of these polishes right away to see what it is all about. I placed an order for the pack of 40 minis which are super cute and ideal for retail, and a few glitters, top, base & a few colours to stamp with.

 

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This picture was taken in my messy kitchen, but I was waaaay to impatient to wait before opening it.

My order arrived promptly the next day. Due to being super busy at work I never got a chance to ‘play’ for a few days so I ended up borrowing my eldest to give me a hand-quite literally. I applied Creative Play base coat, colour coat, glitter coat, and did some stamping on her ring finger followed by a top coat. The polish applied well in 2 coats. Dry time wasn’t too bad, and the polish had a strong pigment ideal for stamping with. My guinea pig was pleased anyway as you can see.

 

 

So what do I think? Well the colours are bright, bold & fun, but will I use them on clients? No, not as a polish. I currently use CND Vinylux as my polish for manicures & pedicures, the super quick dry time & hard wearing qualities of it wins out every time. That and the fact I have 2 racks full of it which hardly get used. Most of my clients have Shellac, only a handful prefer a polish. I use Vinylux mainly on toes. I find normal polish a dying trend in the salon. However, Creative Play does have a place. I have purchased some of the lovely glitter polishes to use on top of Vinylux. I have kept a few for stamping with, and the minis make the perfect retail item. Just because I won’t use it much professionally doesn’t mean my clients won’t enjoy it as an at home product for themselves. The price is reasonable, the colours are cool & it is still a decent polish. I think using Shellac & Vinylux has spoiled me, I just don’t have the patience for sitting watching paint to dry. My daughter loved them though, she managed to wangle a few of the minis for herself.

An idea shared via one of the CND groups was to offer a Creative Play pedicure. Where clients get to choose a complimentary mini polish with their pedi. I plan to incorporate this into a CND Citrus Spa Pedicure for the Summer. This is a great idea as it lets the client maintain their pedicure at home. Did I mention how cute the minis were???

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Other purchases this week include two new Lecente glitters: Mortar and Waterfall. Don’t be fooled by Waterfall’s gold appearance in the tub, it is an amazing ultra fine multi tonal pink. It looks like it will be versatile and could go over most colours. It is supposed to be similar to CND’s limited edition additive ‘Dream Lily’. Mortar is a super sparkly holographic purple blue colour which I have been waiting to get my hands on for a while. I have also spotted pictures on Facebook of the new summer collection from Lecente which includes glitter strands. Now these I can’t wait to play with.

 

 

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For my Glasgow trip I changed my own nail colour to another new glitter purchase (I know I have a problem) from the Magpie Glitter range: Angel and Amelia. Amelia came recommended as I was hunting for the perfect nude glitter. It is beautiful. Angel is a mix of white iridescent and silver holographic and reminds me of Winter and weddings.It is extremely hard to photograph this colour. Both these colours are stunning. This was my first purchase from Magpie and I definitely will be ordering again. If you have any recommendations please do let me know.

Have any of you tried the new Creative Play polishes yet? What did you think? Let me know by commenting below, until next time

sparkle on,

Jo x

In other exciting news I have been asked to be a bridesmaid at my brother’s wedding in February 2018. I am so excited. Of course I accepted. I cried when I got this lovely card through the door.The only thing is I may have to give up my (un)healthy afternoon snacks before the wedding in order to lose some weight. No more Squashies for me (who am I kidding lol).

mummy moments: note to self don’t leave unprepared fruit lying around. The toddler WILL eat it, skin and all.

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The toddler loves bananas a bit too much- he won’t even wait for me to peel them!

Note to self no.2: remember to check under your bed for used baby cups.

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I’m ashamed to admit I found this cup under my bed 🙈

Note to self no.3: don’t laugh too hard as your pelvic floor isn’t quite up to it just yet. This did literally make my pee myself laughing-mainly because it’s true.

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I can relate to this

Note to self no.4: appreciate every minute as they aren’t small for long.

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Enjoying a lovely walk to the beach with my youngest  in his trike.