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Top Tips

  • Seeing Red?

    When I was younger, the biggest issue I had with rosy cheeks was a tendency to blush. These days though, it’s a different type of unwelcome rosiness that is plaguing me; rosacea. The causes of redness and rosacea are still pretty mysterious, with the triggers notoriously individual, leading to swelling of the blood vessels in the skin and causing inflammation and redness around the cheek and nose. Anything from food, alcohol, stress or even pollution can lead to rosacea, with those with fair skin being more susceptible (that would be me).

    Over the past few months I’ve discovered a few tips and tricks that can help reduce rosacea and inflammation. I’ve also got a few choice products that have done the trick for me that I’ll share along the way.

    Tip 1: Supplements are your friend

    I used to be very lax with my supplement intake. A sad pot of multivitamins was the only supplement featuring in my bathroom cabinet, and even then I’d only remember to take one every week or so. I used to think we’ve survived all these years without supplements, why start now? My diet should give me all the nutrients I need…blah blah blah. Small reality check though; we all lead busy lives. I don’t always have the time to make sure all my meals are nutritionally balanced and quite frankly, who does? Step in supplements. To help keep rosacea at bay, the must-have supplements are Vitamin C, Vitamin D3 and Omega-3. Plus, I’d advise you avoid iron supplements as iron can aggravate rosacea.

    Tip 2: Avoiding ‘heating’ foods

    Certain food and drink items can affect rosacea-prone people differently. Caffeine, red wine, curries etc can all aggravate the condition. My advice would be to turn detective and keep track of your own response to each and reduce your intake accordingly.

    Tip 3: Beware of the sun (and sunbeds)

    Ultraviolet light and particularly UVA can affect rosacea sufferers more severely. Everyone should take care in the sun, i.e. always wear sun protection and never burn your skin. But for anyone with skin sensitivity of any kind, it’s wise to avoid sunscreens with a chemical sunblock as they are more likely to cause an irritation. Opt instead for sunblock using minerals, preferably zinc oxide. Bit of an obvious one too, but avoid anything containing alcohol.  I reach for Thalgo SPF50+ Age Defence Sunscreen 50ml

    Tip 4: Find the right products

    When it comes to treating sensitivity and rosacea, Thalgo is my go to brand. If I’ve had a few weeks filled with my rosacea triggers, my saviour is always Thalgo Multi-Soothing Concentrate. It’s an intensive 7-day treatment that can help normalise sensitive skin and relieve discomfort. It contains witch hazel which reduces redness and the appearance of dilated blood vessels on the skin’s surface. I use half a vial in the morning and half at night before my moisturiser for 7 days to help rebalance my skin. I also love the Nutri-Soothing Cream from the same range to help restore comfort to my skin.

    Do you suffer with rosacea? I’d love to hear what you find works best for you.

    xoxo

  • How to get rid of brassy tones

    If you’re a blonde like me, no doubt you’ve experienced the strange phenomenon that plagues the unnatural blonde. A week or so after having your hair coloured…the shade you left the salon with is no more, and now your hair has taken on an undesirable yellow, orange or even reddish tone. That’s right, you’ve got brassy hair.

    Brassiness, or unwanted warm tones, typically happens in dark hair that is coloured platinum or blonde, but it can also strike hair that has been highlighted or hair that has been lightened to brown.

    Not to get too technical here, but to understand why this keeps happening, you’ll need to understand a bit about the hair lightening process. Brassy tones become a problem when bleaching or lifting doesn’t get rid of all the underlying pigment in your hair, giving the warm tones an opportunity to reveal themselves. For lightened blonde hair, the underlying pigment is yellow, and for lightened brown to black hair, the underlying pigments are orange to red. When the brassiness starts to rear its head, just think of it as your natural hair saying, “Hi, remember me?”.

    Don’t stress though. There are many options when it comes to dealing with brassy tones, both preventing it and fixing it after it happens.

    The first step towards avoiding brassy tones is to ensure your hair is in tip top condition. Since healthy hair is less likely to turn brassy, add in a bond-protecting service, like L’Oreal Professional’s Smartbond, during the bleaching or colouring process, to protect your hair from damage while colouring and strengthen your strands. Follow this up with nourishing treatments at home, such as Redken All Soft Megamask 200ml. Use this once a week, leaving it on for at least 10 minutes to give your hair a treat and restore hair health.

    Need an at-home quick fix? If you’re a blonde, you’ll need to go for a purple shampoo like such as L’Oreal Professional Silver Shampoo 300ml. Replace your usual shampoo once or twice a week with this baby. Once you’ve lathered up and distributed through your hair, leave for two minutes and then rinse thoroughly. If you’ve had your hair lightened to brown, try a blue-tinted shampoo or conditioner such as L’Oreal Professional Serie Expert Color Corrector 150ml.

    You need to avoid overuse with these products though, so make sure you only use these products once or twice a week. The rest of the time use a colour protecting shampoo, such as Redken Colour Extend Magnetics to help reduce colour fade.

    With Summer holiday season fast approaching, you’ll need to be wary of the sun and chilling by the pool. Chlorine from swimming pools can strip your hair dry, leaving your hair dull and damage-prone. And when hair becomes damaged, your colour will have a harder time staying in place, meaning more opportunities for brassy tones to appear. Make sure you protect your hair before you hit the pool by wetting it down first. Your hair is like a sponge, once it’s saturated with water it will be unable to absorb too much of the chlorinated water once you dive in. Sun exposure can also affect your colour by causing it to fade faster and making brassiness more visible. Keep your hair protected by spraying in L’Oreal Professional Solar Sublime Conditioning Spray 125ml. This light, leave-in mist provides instant conditioning protection for hair during sun exposure, shielding it from drying effects, while leaving it super shiny.

    There’s a reason why blonde is deemed the most ‘high maintenance’ of all hair colours…

    How do you control your hair’s brassy tones?

    xoxo

  • The most underrated haircare product you probably already own (and if you don’t, you should)

    I know that having options when it comes to haircare is the dream, but with so many products out there, it can be overwhelming to select the best ones for your hair type. Cue leave-in conditioner, aka the product that can transform your hair routine. Leave-in conditioners, like L’Oreal 10 in 1 Spray and Redken’s One United, make it possible to give your hair the best care possible.

    WHAT IS LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER?

    When you’ve been conditioning your hair every time you wash it, adding a leave-in conditioner may seem a teeny bit pointless. I hear you, but hear me out.  A leave-in conditioner spray works side-by-side with your normal conditioner, rather than in place of it. Leave-in conditioners help give your hair an extra dose of moisture throughout the day. Plus, if you’ve noticed your hair breaking off more than usual while brushing, a leave-in conditioner could be exactly what you need. In the case of both L'Oreal 10 in 1 and Redken One United they provide heat protection and prevent breakage.

    How to use:

    If you like to space out the days you wash your hair, these two sprays can hold you over in-between, making your hair feel manageable. Spray on damp or dry hair whenever you feel like your hair needs a refreshing boost, focusing on the ends of your hair. Since the ends are the oldest part of your hair, this is where extra moisture is needed the most.

    For fans of heat styling (so that’s all of you then), you can apply these conditioners before using your heated tools to help prevent heat damage. These products are so lightweight that you can layer it under your other products to soften the touch and texture of your styling products.

    Trust me, leave in conditioner sprays are the most versatile haircare products out there and can be a real game-changer for your haircare routine.

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