Top Twelve of 2012: The Future is Now, Via My Face and We Love Laser

This is the final installment of posts about my twelve new fave products and services of last year. They do all add up, even though they weren’t in twelve posts, and even though, uh, there were actually thirteen? You come for the reviews, you stay for the LOLz…

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Do We Love Laser? Yes, we do. Not only because it is in my locality, but also because the vibe of the place is as youthful as the services it provides.

Do I want to recapture my youth? Hmmm, not so much — but I am happy to look as well as I can for as long as I can. I feel like the Photo Facial has tidied up some fines lines, zapped some excess hair, and in general refurbed the canvas of my face. I also feel like the potions and lotions I use for all that anti-aging biz will actually have a chance to work.

The first time I lasered? That was something of a learning curve, for sure. The second time? I thought I was blasé, but there was still a touch of The Fear. The third time? I was all over it, an old hand, and really delighted by the progress my pigmentation was making — meaning, it was progressing away, away, away, and off of my face.

Pictures are worth a thousand: the top two are from the first session, and the bottom from the most recent.

FIRST LASER

THIRD LASER 2I didn’t intervene with the Photoshop, so the colour temperature of the images is different, which makes it look like I intervened to make the third one look better, but I didn’t. I am entirely satisfied with the work, and I’m deffo going to go for more.

Two things that I’ve found that work wonderfully well on the new, improved surface:

FACE IT

I still stand by my post about Human+Kind’s Anti-Ageing Cream. This is another product I’ve used down to its last pump. And whilst I didn’t blog specially about Sisley’s Black Rose Masque — OMG, Sisley’s Black Rose Masque! I had gone to get a facial at the Brown Thomas Beauty Room, and the aesthetician had recommended this, as had the Sisley PR. I am designating this as my US to IE jet lag cure. Even if it doesn’t zap the lag, at least I’ll look stunningly dewy and fresh-faced.

It does cost a bomb — €106/£81/$158 — but it is a little miracle in a tube. I expect to get ten masques out of this, as the usual dictum of ‘a little of an expensive product goes a long way’ applies, so that’s really only €10.60 per masque!

I got your world class rationalisation right here!

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We Love Laser Medical Aesthetic Clinic is located at 82 Upper Georges Street, Dun Laoghaire. Visit www.welovelaserireland.com for the full menu of treatments.

Watchoo Lookin’ At? Post-Sisley Facial Face on the 46A

Just evidence that I do ‘naked’ face too, sometimes. Especially after I’ve had a treatment.

Dude to the left was like WTF and I was all WTF right back.

And the lovely Gabriella from Sisley, who administered an amazing facial in the Beauty Rooms in Brown Thomas, was subtly WTF when I said no thanks to a bitta make up post-treatment.

I like to let the pores breathe, you know?

Did you know about the Beauty Rooms in Brown Thomas? I didn’t! They are tucked away on the ground floor, right off the main beauty hall, and the major brands offer treatments on a rotating basis. The facial is €50 against product, so if you don’t want to buy anything, you just stump up the nifty.

Now, day spa environments are generally noisy, and whilst tucked away from the buzz of BT, you’re not all that tucked. There is soothing spa tunes playing in the room, but you can absolutely hear what’s going on in the outside world. This did not bother me, which is amazing because it is exactly the sort of thing I would complain about. There was something about hearing all that activity beyond the beauty room door that I found thrilling, in a cinematic way. It was the urban soundtrack to my fancy facial.

And Sisley is fancy! The French brand uses botanical active ingredients and essential oils in its concoctions — I must admit to having an unfortunate olfactory reaction to a tinted moisturiser I had to test last year. I actually brought it to the counter because I’d thought it had gone off.

No such worries with any of the myriad products that Gabriella used in my facial. She used twelve products, from cleanser to pore minimiser, and since it was the end of the day, she also gave me a layer of Supremÿa At Night, which felt like an instant face lift, and ought to as it retails for €508.

If anyone has used this over a course of time, do get in touch and let us know if it was worth it?

The highlight of the treatment was the exfoliation with the Creme Gommante, priced at a less breathtaking €54. Gently, gently, Gabriella applied the buffing cream, and gently, gently, did she brush it off. We talked about it afterwards, as I wondered how did one try this at home? By trial and error, basically. It’s going to be messy until you get the hang of it. I appreciated her frankness.

I got a bunch of samples:

Including two of the scorned foundation, which I am actually gasping to try now.

The women of Sisley in BTs are lovely, go along and ask some questions, and tell them Sue sent you. You may not have the dosh to invest in that night cream, but it’s always worth checking out a few samples of things. And the holidays are imminent…!

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Check at the Sisley counter for upcoming Beauty Room appointments.

What I Was Going to Put on My Face Yesterday

And what actually got there.

I suspect that a lot of people who don’t like to wear make up are put off by how much you have to put on. I totally get that! I’d argue about the ‘have to’ so much as ‘choose to’, and particularly with the advent of BB creams — more about them, someday, hopefully before they get replaced by something else even more allegedly magical — you don’t really have to trowel on the slap to get a look that is ‘you’, just all shined up.

And yet. Even I was rather appalled when I laid out everything I thought I’d put on my face yesterday afternoon:

In the words of my very first Mac Classic: Eep! We’ve got your Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation, which is on tap to review for my tried & tested column in the Herald; Sisley Instant Primer, which I didn’t fancy so much the first time I tried, but wanted to give it a second chance; new Maybelline Colossal Smoky Eyes Mascara; a gorgeous palette from Yves Saint Laurent, as seen on new representative Face, Jessica Chastain — this will make me look just like her; a YSL illuminator pen thing, for around the eyes; Sisley lipgloss, with the option of the NYC lipstick; Dr Hauschka Illuminating Powder, even though I am not a huge fan of loose powder… And a whole bunch of eye pencils that I can’t even see what they are. And an AVON lipstick I found in a coat pocket. And the Shine So Bright from Lush.

No blush, I thought, since it was going to be all about the Smoky Eye.

Also not pictured, the combination I am using on the brows at the moment as the HD Brow dye wears off: Speed Brow by BeneFit, and the super excellent AVON Glimmerstick Brow Definer in Soft Brown.

Then I lost my nerve.

See, I had to go to the theatre to review a show, and it was opening night at the Abbey, and there would be loads of people I knew, and I didn’t want to pitch up looking like Morticia Addams. I don’t have a lot of confidence in my Smoky-Eye-creating ability, so I ditched the entire plan, and feel back on the one I am liking so much at the moment:

Red lipstick. Can’t put much else on the face when you are working that, IMHO. Went with everything as planned, primer-foundation-powder-wise, used the Maybelline mascara > LOVE, and then plucked up my old-faithful eyeliner, L’Oréal Superliner Luminizer for Blue Eyes, which, in fairness, seems to luminize. I also ended up using a Wella concoction on The Hair, I think it is so old it is not even on eBay. Still works though!

I am very impressed by the Bourjois foundation, judge as best you can from the pixilley iPhone image. I was underwhelmed by the Dr Hauschka, and ended up giving myself a going over with a new Clarins palette, Odyssey Face Palette, which: more about that later, too.

Now. The thing is, I don’t carry all this around with me in the course of a day. For an evening out at the theatuh, one bring only one’s powder, black pencil to touch up the liner on the upper inner eyelid, the brow pencil and, of course, the lipstick/gloss. One means, come on! Don’t need to lug around the whole face, as it were.

I’m going to declare a Smoky Eye Day, and stay in and practice. There will be pictures to prove it happened…

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Beauty Meets Gadgety: Sisley Eau Efficace

One of my intentions on this site is to talk about gadgety things, because that is another arrow in my quiver, as it were. A long time Gadget Gal for the Evening Herald, I’ve been put in abeyance, and do miss writing about things technical.

Imagine my delight when I clapped eyes on Sisley’s Eau Efficace, which is French for Gentle Eye Make-up Remover, Face and Eyes. There is it, looking fairly innocent if sophisticatedly so, in the classic and streamlined Sisley fashion. I tend to like a little more oomph in my packaging {TWSS} — but I did a big clear out at the weekend, and my white bathroom is purely gleaming, so this bottle and its look fit right in.

So what’s the big deal, you ask? Let’s pop the top, shall we?

This is an excellent way to dispense product. So: take your cotton pad, cover the top of this yoke with it, and press. The make-up remover comes up through the white dot thing {left}. It’s silhouette is shown to better effect at right.

Easy does it, and you get just the correct amount on the pad. Me, I tend to have a heavy hand, with this make-up remover, and whisky, so I had somewhat of a learning curve.

I have only been using this as a face make-up remover at the moment — I have been letting the brows lead the way for as long as the dye lasts — and I have to say, this is as refreshing as tonic. I feel slightly dubious about its ‘efficace’ as regards the full monty of mascara and eyeliner, much less eyeshadow, but we’ll give it a go. I have to be out in public tomorrow, so I’ll fill you in.

Thing is, you’re not going to go shopping for Sisley in the bargain bin, are you? For €81.50 a go, you’re going to want to get every last drop. I’ll keep track of this one, because another one of my best arrows is the Dart of Rationalisation: if this lasts for six months and does an excellent job of cleaning yer gob, then that’s only €13 a month on make-up removal. Is that good value? It may be, if you also feel like this fulfills the remit of a toner. Then that’s two products for the price of one. Right? Right?!?

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Sisley is available at Brown Thomas.