My Massage exams :)

This is my last week at massage class and it is just to make sure all my paperwork is in order for the file and coursework is up to scratch.

Last Thursday I had my sumative exam and I am pleased to say I passed with a distinction woohoo!

Not as stressful as you imagine as you don’t need to stick 100% to the routine, you just need to do a good mix of the moves you have been taught and stick to a good time.  It actually still stuns me how quickly an hour and 15 minutes passes when doing a massage.  I think it might be one of my fave treatments next to the facial to perform.

Do be aware that if you have to do the A&P coursework leave yourself good time to do it… it is a LOT of work to look up all the info you need to put into the paperwork.  My coursework ended up at 27 pages long!

Formative wise I did 4 and this had to include a 55+, use of heat treatment and use of mechanical massage but you will find it very easy to hit everything in the minimum of 4 massages as long as you plan well so no having to do 5 or 6 formatives which is fab!

If you are thinking about doing massage and a bit nervous, don’t be, it honestly is one of the easiest treatments to learn IMO x


I have been a little quiet but it’s good news! (New job with Lush)

Sorry I have been a little lacking on the blog front but I had been going through the interview process for a new job and didn’t want to jinx myself posting about it.

So 2 weeks ago I had an interview with Lush for the role of Trainee Manager.  I felt the interview went well but you know how these things go, just because you think it went well doesn’t mean the interviewer agrees or even if they do agree, perhaps somebody else was better.  I did get the call I was waiting for, the one that asked me back for a second interview.

I had my second interview on Wednesday.  It involved a short interview with a more senior manager from the company, a business plan on how I would increase the average customer spend and then an hour and a bit on the floor showing what my customer service skills were like.

I won’t lie, I was pooping myself about the floor work.  Although I love lush and I use their products in my life regularly, I tend to stick to the same items again and again!  Why change what works?  I need not have worried, the team were really lovely and I think the time was more to see how I act with customers rather than if I knew the small print on every product.

As I left I was given a “little bag of goodies” as they put it.  WOW, this bag was not little and I will say there were no less than £80 worth of items in there.  A wide variety of items at that.  At this point although I was still hopeful I decided that even if I did not end up with the job it was okay.  I have other options.  I can go back to college, set up my home salon etc if needs be and so I relaxed and enjoyed my products.

That said, the store manager called me yesterday morning and offered me the job!  Of course I bit her arm off and said I would be accepting the job.

As you all know I have a passion for cruelty free cosmetics and so I honestly think that I will be so perfect Lush and them for me.  I guess you can now look forward to lots of reviews on the products I received in my goodie bag and any others I purchase along the way.


It does mean that my home salon will now be put on hold and I will not be returning to do my level 3 in September.  That is not to say I won’t go back to complete my level 3 and I do still wish to do a body wrap and gel nails course this summer to keep myself learning new skills that I can share my progress of with you.

Beauty equipment and Ikea?

I seen a great offer today that Ellisons had on Facebook – they had their “Camilla trolley” reduced from £89.95 to £39.95.  A saving of £50 had me very tempted to order it there and then but then I thought “Hmm I am sure I have read about people using kitchen trolleys from Ikea as a beauty trolley”. 

So my next logical step was to get onto the Ikea website and do you know what?  They have a trolley that looks perfect for my start up needs and it costs a mere £25! Its called the BYGEL Trolley and it has a drawer to hide bits and bobs (I am thinking my tinting stuff and lashes?). 


Trolley on its own

It also has hooks to hang either towels on or they do cute little pots which I actually think would be amazing for cotton wool and brushes.  As we have an Ikea about 40 minutes drive away it means I can also swing by and buy it in person next time I am heading past, thus saving me delivery charges. 


Totally going to buy some cute cups with my trolley as they are only 60p each!


My trolley isn’t the only thing I will be buying from a home store, equally my glass display cabinet is actually one from my old living room set which I bought many moons ago from Argos when we were starting out.  It is much like this one .  Ours was mahogany but I am upcycling it with Annie Sloan Original White chalk paint to give it that perfect shabby chic look that many salons are sporting these days.

So there we have it – I shall be acquiring my beauty trolley for my home treatment room from Ikea rather than a traditional beauty supplier and my display cabinet is from Argos.  If you are looking a furnishings or practical items for your home salon (or heck perhaps you rent a room or own your own salon on the high street) then looking out of the box to find something that meets your needs could end up saving you a substantial amount of money.

If you know of any other out of the box ideas that I might find useful for my home salon then shout! I am already thinking I might start looking for an old spice rack to upcycle for a nail polish wall display!

Things I learnt today about the lips

The internet is such a great place to spend time when you want to learn new things.  Not that I endorse staying in on your computer all day, I would rather go out and experience stuff but it isn’t always possible.

I read some great tips today that I read and wanted to share with you.  I figured if I hadn’t been taught these tips in college then you may not have either.

Firstly – Lip liner should match your lip colour:   I was reading a little on lip liner.  My lip liner is a matte pink one that I must have had for about 5 years.  I don’t wear lip liner often but I always thought this colour was pretty.  However today I learned that if you want a natural looking lip you should not really be wearing lip liner to match our lipsticks, we should in fact be choosing one that matches our lip colour.  Who knew? I just figured I wear pink gloss and so pink liner would match so now I am on a mission to find a new liner to match my lip colour.

Lipstick should be applied with a brush:  Another tip for the lips and the more I thought about it the more it made sense.  Most people apply their lipstick straight on but the reality is that lipstick can easily bleed and end up going places we don’t really want it to.  Applying to the centre of the lips with a brush and working outwards of course reduces the chance of you ending up with too much lipstick on or your lippy sliding out on any fine lines you may have around the mouth area.

Dark lipstick makes your lips seem smaller:  Another one that makes sense when you think about it.  If dark shadows make the eyes look smaller then of course dark lippy makes our lips look smaller.  So if your lips are thin it is best to avoid it and opt for a lighter more natural colour to accentuate your lips.

So there we have it, 3 tips I thought you may find useful but on another note, carrot and cinnamon pancakes… why did I never think of making them before? Genius!

New shoes and polished toes

Today I got a beautiful pair of new sandals from my boyfriend.

As a given, my toe nails are well painted.  Currently they are coated in No.7 Cheeky Cheeky and No.7 limited edition gold glitter and they look pretty even if I say so myself.

It was only when I took this photo that I realised how glad I was that my toes were painted.  In fact, had they not been painted there would have been no way I would have posted a photo of my feel in those shoes on my Facebook feed.  I actually worried that people would think my polish was chipped as the glitter did not show up well on the photo I took with my Blackberry.


New shoes and polished toes

I am going somewhere with this honest so keep with me.  I actually hate feet and when I was doing pedicures in college I started them wearing gloves.  I just could not bring myself to touch other peoples feet with my bare hands.  After a few weeks I got to a stage where I would use my bare hands but I wasn’t very happy about it.  I really had to work hard at getting myself used to giving pedicures.  Why bother?

Well as above, I will not wear sandals without my toes painted and I think it is fair to say this is standard of many women in the summer months.  Recently I attended my daughters sports day and my nieces sports day (different schools) and I did take note that almost every woman at the events who had sandals on, had polish on their nails.  Further still about 50% of them actually had nail art on their toes.

So my point of today’s ramble (as inspired by my new shoes) is, if like me you hate feet and you are thinking of doing beauty then you need to quickly get over it.  Pedicures are going to become a good income stream for you one day and in reality they are very easy to perform.  With nail art becoming ever more popular pedicures are also a great treatment you can up sell from a basic polish to nail art on some of the toes.

As I said above, I hate feet and so if I can do a pedicure without moaning then I believe anyone can.

Would you like the good news or the bad news?

I always start with the bad news, then the good news cheers me up.

So the bad news is that right now I am sat here with a very red and bruised bikini line and my underarms weren’t far behind it earlier on!  This is because I exchanged waxing with another girl in my class and well… she doesn’t seem to do something quite right, be it stretching, her pull or whatever.

The good news however is that I managed to do so many waxes today that I have left myself with only a bikini, underarm and lip wax to do before I can do my Summative exam!  Meaning, all being well,I will be done with school for the year next Thursday! Ending school six weeks early and a fully qualified level 2 beauty therapist!

I can’t believe it, it felt like it took forever to get to this point but at the same time I am so pleased to be here and I can’t wait to get that bit of paper that will open lots of new doors for me in the world of beauty


Lacking inspiration?

We all have those moments where we lack inspiration and we feel a little blah.

For me that has been today and I have been hunting for places I can find inspiration to keep myself motivated and to remind myself why this is something I want to do as a career.

Most of us will use social media of some sort to find our inspiration, be it Pinterest, Facebook groups or following the blogs of our favourite salons and make-up artists.  I know I for one am a huge fan of companies like Illamasqua and follow their Facebook page to see all the beautiful images they share but what about the lesser known places for inspiration?


Make-up by Noreen O’Connor and Photo by Michael O’Sullivan

 Having seen the above photo on a beauty forum I instantly thought of how it could rival the better known Karla Powells “Snow Queen of Sweets” image and no doubt many of us follow and admire Karla Powell? But how many of us have heard of Noreen O’Connor? No? Me either but I am sure glad I stumbled across her talent.  Noreen is from the same patch of land as myself and based in Co.Cork.  Her website has a range of images showing her work, many of which have been taken by Michael O’Sullivan – why not visit both of their sites to see if they inspire you too?

While in the mood for checking out the work of the pros I also came across the following local make-up artists who may interest you:

Saks Designs

Emma Hanna

Make-up Bangor

Ashley Morhej

So when your having a blah day – get thee to Google and get to looking for the locals who are already doing what you want to do.  At best you will find inspiration and at worst you might find a few and think “Gee, if they can do it, I sure as heck can!”  

Remember, if you happen to find a gem amongst the chaff then there is no harm in approaching them to offer your assistance for free in exchange for gaining some valuable advice and experience.  Just remember to ask nicely 🙂