All posts by Julie Lee

How to choose the perfect foundation

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With make up sales at an all time high, it’s hardly surprising that many of us are buying products that we don’t ever use! We’re lured by clever advertising to buy the latest foundations without having the basic info we need to make the right choices. I’ve put together 5 easy steps to help you get it right…


1. Know what you want your foundation to do

Do you want to let those freckles shine bright or do you want to cover your broken veins? Foundations come in a variety of coverages and finishes. Know what you want it to do before you hit the nearest make up counter. A good consultant should be able to help with this by asking you some key questions such as ‘what sort of coverage do you like?’ There’s full coverage foundation for covering scars and birthmarks, medium coverage that you can ‘build’ and light coverage that can be ‘barely there’. Add to that the different formulations such as cream, powder, mousse and mineral and you’re forgiven for getting it wrong for so long! Decide what you want it to do and in which formulation.

2. Testing Testing

Your foundation isn’t a mask. Nor should it be a different colour to your neck. It’s not your foundations job to change the colour of your face so it should blend seamlessly. If you’re having to colour your neck to match, chances are you’ve got the wrong colour.


Tone it down

Knowing your skin tone is where most people go wrong. Have you bought foundations in the past and wondered why they just don’t look right? You thought you’d found the perfect colour only to get it home and it just looked weird! Take a really good look at your skin. You’ll have a pink undertone (cool) yellow (warm) or a mixture of both (neutral) Check out the inside of your wrists. Do your veins appear blue or green? If they look blue/purple, you’re cool-toned. If green, you’re warm-toned. If you have trouble telling, you’re probably neutral. Once you know this it can help with everything from knowing the colour of clothes, jewellery and hair colour that suit you

3. Lights, camera action

How many times have you got a foundation home to find it’s totally wrong? Department stores and shops often have unflattering fluorescent lighting and you might find that what looks good while you’re there doesn’t look so great when you get home! Ask the consultant to put some on you (usually on the jawline) and go to the windows if there are any. If not, ask for a sample or put some on and go outside to check. Remember, we’re trying to match it to your neck. Many high end foundations aren’t cheap so you need to know the colour is EXACTLY right before parting with your hard-earned cash. If you’re buying off the shelf, this can be even more difficult as you’re on your own!

4. Add colour

Ok so this isn’t necessarily about foundation but I wanted to add a word about colour. Foundation alone can look flat. It’s the job of your blusher and bronzer to add colour to your face, not your foundation.

5. Added extras

Formulations for foundations are becoming more and more sophisticated and many now have light reflectors, sun protection, moisturising properties, anti-wrinkle agents to name but a few. Go back to no.1 to decide what it is you want your foundation to do for you to help you decide.

So there you have it! A quick guide to choosing the perfect foundation. Hopefully this will help you in your buying decisions and stop you wasting your hard-earned money on products that aren’t right for you.

Happy shopping!

Much love

Julie x

No gimmicks, no nonsense, just beautiful, bespoke treatments


Lash Growth Myths

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I’m seeing so many people on social media asking if there is anything to make their lashes grow faster. This is often after they’ve taken their semi-permanent lashes out.

Before we start, we need to address this. Semi permanent lashes don’t ruin your natural lashes. Pulling them out does. Having ones that are way too long for your own lashes to handle does. Having ones that are too ‘heavy’ for your natural lash to carry does. 

Lashes are essential hair. They go through a 3 phase growth cycle like the rest of the hair on your body. By rights, your semi permanent lash should shed naturally with your own lash (if it’s been attached properly) with a new, healthy lash right behind it. This is the natural growth pattern. They fall out, they grow, they rest, they fall out. Over and over again. Renewing all the time. You also have a set amount of hair follicles. 

I for one look almost foetal without my lashes. Blank, soulless, empty, piggy, ugly eyes. Ok, so I’m being a touch dramatic but those that have experienced this trauma will know exactly what I’m talking about! I put this down to the fact that my once dark, beautiful, voluptuous, long (fake) lashes are no longer and I’m back to the fine, spindly, pale ones that I was born with. Nothing to do with the lashes ruining my own. 

So I read with interest internet suggestions of how to grow your lashes. Better still, advice on posts given by Susan up the road or Carol who’s married to your milkman recommending everything from duck fat to petroleum jelly, castor oil to cod liver oil and everything in between!

So here are the most common miracle lash growing recommendations:

Coconut Oil/Castor Oil– people swear by oiling their  lashes. There is nothing at all to prove using oil will make lashes longer. I agree it can condition them, which will help with breakage, but make them grow longer? Seriously? Plus an absolute no-no if you’re wearing contact lenses or have sensitive eyes. 

Serums/Conditioners – again, these will condition your lashes and are highly recommended after a lash lift or tint of any sort (just imagine having your hair tinted or permed and then not using conditioner!) But do they make lashes grow faster or longer? Sorry, no. How COULD they? 

Petroleum Jelly – Nope. Still doesn’t make them longer!

If any of these ‘miracle hair growth cures’ actually worked – there wouldn’t be any bald people on the planet or people with short hair that wanted it longer. They’d just rub a bit of coconut oil on their bald patch or a dab of Vaseline on their short hair and hey-presto! If only. 

As far as I know, there is nothing (apart from some medicines) that can have any effect on the length or growth of your hair at all. If Susan, Carol or any companies out there would like to prove me wrong, please get in touch and I’ll gladly provide a balding friend or my own fine, whispy horsehair for your trials. 

In the meantime, beware of any products that claim to lengthen, thicken or grow your lashes. It’s nonsense.

If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is! 

Just don’t forget to condition your lashes. Daily!

Love Julie x

The Nail & Beauty Lounge

‘No gimmicks, no nonsense, just beautiful bespoke treatments’