No, I haven’t died – I’ve just been super busy! I’ve been offered a place at university for September which is going to mean a lot of changes in my life so my head has been all over the place. Still, studying up to date special effects make-up, proper prosthetics, wig making and a few other creative and useful things for four years is a very exciting prospect. I need to have an assessment of my disability for them to work out my support needs and options to be able to complete the course.
Anyway enough of me prattling on, lets get on with the nails! Yes that’s right, nails. Since I’m no longer at college under City & Guilds rules I can paint my nails with abandon. I’ve grown them back a bit, not too much as I still need to be able to paint, draw and of course do make-up but there’s plenty to paint now especially since I’m luckily blessed with long nail beds (which are now completely back to normal for my long term readers) even if I do have a horrific C curve.
I don’t think I did a bad job of free-handing the French tips considering it’s the first time I’ve done my own in over a year. I always paint them lower than the free edge actually goes to give the illusion of more length.
Just recently I’ve been using a peel off base coat which is a fairly new discovery. I’m quite taken with it as it means I can take off the polish without using remover and you get to be allowed to pick it!
- UNT Cosmetics; ‘Ready For Take Off’ (peel off base coat)
- Butter London; ‘Nail Foundation (regular base coat)
- Nails Inc; nail kale in ‘Westbourne Park Road’
- Essence; gel nail polish in ’44 On Air!’
- Revlon; ‘Sequins’ (pretty sure this was limited edition but it just gold glitter of various sizes in a base of clear polish.)
- Seche Vite (top coat)
I hope you are all keeping well, I do have a couple of posts planned including details of my visit to the first Manchester Make-Up and Body Art Expo and a couple of product reviews.
May has mainly been a month of winding down and self-care after the end of my course. While I’ve been resting I’ve not been doing nothing, I’ve been creating this new home for my blog, coming back to coding after many years away is quite the shock I’ll tell you!
Anyway I’ll stop waffling now and tell you what beauty items I’ve been loving the most this month:
Anyone who read my post about Manchester Made Up will remember that I mentioned having popped in Lush while I was in the Arndale.
I popped in to try out their ‘Lemony Flutter’ cuticle butter which I have heard many good things about from the ladies on nail art groups. As as regular readers will know I’ve been suffering from nail separation recently (don’t worry, I’ve had it double checked at the GP and there’s definitely no infection of any kind going on,) that’s probably a result of damage from bashing my hands while using my wheelchair or falling over – I have PoTS as well as EDS so fainting is something that happens fairly regularly. The GP however, couldn’t suggest anything that might help fix my nail problem and a pharmacist couldn’t help either so I’m a bit befuddled really! My tutor says it may never re-adhere to the nail bed as it was before, but I am sure as hell going to try everything before I give up!
Anyway, back on topic, Lemony Flutter contains a lemon infusion, lemon oil, coconut oil, lavender oil and tagetes oil among it’s ingredients. Many of these have anti-microbial actions as well as being known for stimulating a healing response so it seems like a good place to start! I normally use Burt’s Bees cuticle butter which has more of a solid balm consistency, this one from Lush has more buttery consistency and is much easier to use than the Burt’s Bees product so just for that I might consider switching already! It smells, naturally, strongly but pleasantly lemony. I think the addition of the other oils really enhance the smell for me as someone who isn’t a lover of things that are lemon scented or flavoured.
After chatting with the lovely Becky about the butter and getting a sample of this she also gave me a sample of another hand cream called ‘Handy Gurugu’ which she thought might be useful to me to try as she finds it helpful for her EDS skin. Many of us with EDS have usual skin; some will have naturally very soft skin, some will have very stretchy skin, some will have skin that splits or tears very easily. Pretty much all EDSers have skin that takes far longer than average to heal. Becky had made a similar observation to the one I have made over the years – moisture helps with the healing! As such, a good moisturising cream is really important, even if your skin already feels soft as a baby’s.
I have to say ‘Handy Gurugu’ smells absolutely divine so I’m really hoping it works as well for me. I don’t think this sample will last long because I keep using it so I can smell it!
The last thing that I got while I was in there was a bath bomb, the ‘Big Blue’. This was recommended to me by the Lush staff as being super relaxing and great for aching or painful muscles or joints.
Big Blue’s key ingredients are a type of kelp called arame seaweed and sea salt. Along with making your bath water blue and smelling amazing it creates an atmosphere of seaside relaxation.
The bomb is absolutely packed with bits of the seaweed so if you don’t like things floating in your bath or don’t like cleaning the plug hole I’d probably give this one a miss or maybe try putting it in some kind of net bag before adding it to the water.
After my bath my skin felt beautifully soft and clean and I had enjoyed a lovely relaxing… mumble… hour… or so. I do think that my general pain level was lower after my bath compared to my regular bubble bath so I’m definitely willing to try this again, you know, for science.
What Lush products do you like? If you’re a spoonie have you found any of their products helpful or relaxing?
*Samples were provided to me for free in store, this does not influence my opinion on these products and I have no connection with the Lush brand.
Anyone who follows my nail posts has probably noticed I haven’t posted a mani in a little while and I thought I should do a little update on why!
I have been dealing with something called onycholysis or nail separation on two of my nails which has meant that these two nails have been kept trimmed as short as I possibly can get them and I have trimmed my other nails neatly too.
Onycholysis has many causes including different types of infection (bacterial, fungal or yeast) or damage to the nail bed. I suspect that mine is caused by damage to the nail bed through the use of my manual wheelchair as I have not experienced any colour change of the nail or the production of any debris or exudate under the free edge.
While I am looking for signs of re-adhesion to the nail bed and keeping the damaged nails short and dry I have decided not to varnish them so I can see exactly what is going on and generally keep an eye on the situation. All I have been using is a bit of OPI Nail Envy. I might have to borrow someone else’s nails over the Easter holiday to indulge my nail art!
In other nail related news this week, having completed my final practical assessment I have passed my manicure unit at college with a distinction and that is all signed off!
My first home gel mani since since getting my certification in the technique! I still need to keep practicing with the top coat as I find it very thin and runny (weirdly) so it’s all too easy to flood the nail wall. I added some fine craft glitter into this mani to sparkle it up a bit more:
I used the Red Carpet Manicure system and a small LED lamp, I’m upgrading to a larger better lamp for my birthday in a few days time. It will be nice to get the better lamp and not have to do the thumb separately or end up with uncured parts on the edges of my very curved pinkie nail.