OK, a first one would of course be the Viagra Paradigm. Today is the 1st of May. A good day on which to reflect on alternatives, and maybe do more than sit around doing so at home in an armchair. If it’s a nice sunny day, why not go and do something actively and proactively about it? Might involve some singing too, and that’s very good for you.
Preamble and/or irreelevent digression over, back to folly-praising business and beauty products. Continue reading
Yes, so much for the fancy-pants complication of my life by moving from ONE to TWO multi-purpose oils. It’s just way too complicated for me, my bathroom, my clumsiness first thing in the morning, and my myopia.
Back to basics, tried and trusted, that work: ONE OIL TO RULE THEM ALL and in the darkness bind them. In a good way, Continue reading
Happy New Year!
This won’t be one of those feckin awful “new year, new skin, new you” bits of baloney. I don’t like baloney, or indeed many sausagey things like it: you know the sort, the texture’s a bit too smooth for comfort, there’s something suspicious about it. And you’d be right to be suspicious: compare and contrast baloney vs. Vegan Dad’s home-made sausages.
No matter how thin you slice it, it’s still baloney. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Or, in other non-words:
Other than in situations where I can only use one oil (travel, staying with friends/family and forgotten to bring stuff with me or it’s an impromptu stay-over, etc.) I’m no longer just using the one oil for everything for which an oil could be used. The DIY multi-purpose oil has now become two such great, amazing, and no not actually at all original and unique concoctions: see here, blame this dude or her ladyship here; regarding the latter, remember—especially anyone who’s thinking of making money out of something that’s already there and claiming the credit for it as their invention, and those who are doing this already (your names and company names are two proper nouns long)—remember that hubris is a very bad thing, as exemplified by this poor lass.
Happy cheery story-time over, on to the unctuous oiliness proper:
- multi-purpose oil #1: the one that gets rinsed off, and sits on skin first in a gloopy way = currently
- sweet almond oil: any brand
- or olive oil: extra-virgin, Greek and more specifically from Crete, in a large 3 l bright green can; c/o the Parthenon, Broadway, Vancouver.
Which is a fabulous grocers/deli. Sorry, non-Vancouverites; but there’s plenty other good delis all over the world. Thank the peaceful commercial gods for millenia of global trade: one upside to desire and consumption.
Praise be to Folly in the highest!
Note: I’ve also bought oil many other places—supermarkets, grocers, delis, markets—and I’m not that fussy about it. EVOO is always cold-pressed etc., that’s in its nature and definition; so if there’s too much bunkum on the label touting how cold its pressing is I’ll get annoyed and might not buy due to marketeering allergies.
But I will pay a little more for one that’s a fair price. I know how olives are grown and the oil produced. It’s labour-intensive. If it costs less than a certain amount, there are corners being cut. The usual corners are unfair labour and mixing with cheaper oils made with cheaper labour (this seems to happen a lot in Italy, lately, with mixing of oils from other countries, but enough of the production is in Italy for the oil to count as Italian-made). A generous (but bordering on stinginess to workers) base-line for bulk larger quantities: at least $10.00 – 12.00 / litre, if shipped directly, family business, co-op, no middle-men, buying from a smaller place with regular turnover (and strong supplier connections, ex. to family and ancestral location). If not, then more.
That’s not crazy money: especially compared to actual ready-made shop-bought “proper” moisturisers…
- multi-purpose oil #2: the one that stays on skin, and sinks in fast = currently
- meadowfoam seed oil: Mountain Rose Herbs is the last lot I got; I’ve also bought it from local Vancouver suppliers
The relevant posts have duly been updated:
UPDATE (2012-01-04): back to just one oil, The Universal Multi-Purpose One And Only One (meadowfoam). Two oils was just too much arse. This is what happens when you’re a minimalist, hate clutter, despise prissy multiple products kicking around in the bathroom ready to trip you up, AND combine that with being short-sighted and lazy.
Also, a reminder of a chocolatey oily joy:
Previously discussed on here:
This stuff is bloody brilliant. Here’s what it can be used for:
- hand cream
- body moisturiser
- face cream
- eye cream
- neck and décolleté (and, yep, boob) cream
- facial cream cleanser / cleansing cream, and make-up remover
- shaving balm
- hair conditioner
- leave-in conditioner: I first used Allergenics cream this way for swimming
- styling cream, when hair’s being dry; helps to tame frizz.
- emergency soothing cream, inc. on some kinds of hurt skin
- shoe polish: I’ve used this (a while back) on leather shoes and bags (I don’t wear leather these days), and also on non-leather footwear, as a waterproofing layer. Other things are cheaper, but if you’re travelling and have opted to pack light, it is another handy use. Can also be used at a pinch on waxed cloth, though as with shoes, a waxy balm is better (and when packing light, I’ll have one of them with me anyway).
Recent and current uses:
- hand cream
- localised treatment for dry patches:
- these come and go with changes in temperature if I go into a very heated dry room; the usual one is my forehead
- hair cream, assisting in The Fight Against Frizz:
- Wash and condition and rinse hair in the usual way.
- Towel dry.
- Leave to air-dry a little. This is the tricky point and will require experimenting, to figure out the ideal moment at which to…
- … squeeze a small blob of this out, rub between finger-tips to distribute, and tease through frizz-prone areas of hair. Too litle = no effect, too much = greaseball.
- In my experience, that moment is when the rebellious strands start to become feisty and exercise their right to self-determination. When they start to poke out and wave around in a direction contrary to the rest of my hair, and gravity itself. This may mean looking in a mirror from time to time to check. Pulling hair back tightly doesn’t help, nor does being more gentle with it and wrapping it up. At some point, the rebels will revolt. The moment they do, tackle them with soothing creaminess, subduing them in the nicest possible way into submission. But hair should still be damp, and definitely not dry.
- A warning: this cream is a careful balance of humectants (aloe vera, glycerin, hyaluronic acid) and moisturisers/emollients (fatty alcohols, wax, oils, butters). But that includes a fair whack of aloe vera. Which, as with all hair things containing aloe, is a factor in the weird and wonderful equation that is how hair behaves depending on its dampness and that of the surrounding air.
—Apply this to dry hair + then go outside in the rain = frizzy hair.
—Apply to damp hair + let air-dry naturally slowly, indoors in moderate temperature and comfortable humidity, air neither too moist not too dry, as detected by skin happiness + then go outside = soft waves.
—Apply + leave hair even just ever so slightly damp + go outside into cold dry air = dry brittle frizzy hair.
- NB: this will not flatten out hair or make it all nicely uniformly straight. Only flat-ironing or a wig will do that.
- NB (2): in my case, when this stuff works, the wiggly bits will insist on persisting in being wiggy and poke out in amusing directions. But they won’t be frizzy, I won’t look like I’ve had a close encounter of an electrifying kind, and the hair will feel supple and smooth, not dry and brittle.
- NB (3): hair may well still revert to type and go frizzy if the weather changes for the rainy partway through the day. *Sigh*. Using a teeny amount of the right texture oil (meadowfoam on me: light but potent) seems to be another good way around this problem. Work in progress…
INGREDIENTS: Aloe Barbadensis, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Glucoside, Cera Alba (beeswax), Borago Officinalis (Borage) Seed Oil, Prunus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Rosa Moschata (Rose) Oil, Glycerin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Brassica Campestris (Rapeseed) Sterol, Zinc Oxide, Capryloyl Glycine, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Hyaluronic Acid, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid.
COST: £5.00 – 7.00 for a 50 ml tube, and worth every penny. Alas, the old 100 ml tube seems to have been discontinued.
Fairly readily available in the UK from high street chemists (many branches of Boots have it), Holland & Barrett, and other granolemporia. And online. Shipping rates vary, depending on where one happens to be located. I find that to get the stuff from the UK to Canada I usually count on doubling the price, a bit less when buying more at a time, but on the other hand not buying tonnes of the stuff otherwise those nice chaps from Customs will get too interested. Mind you, if my supplies were to get confiscated and used in other areas of Canada, and if those using the cream were to blog about it, this could give us some invaluable information on its uses, benefits, and other applications in other parts of Canada. Especially those parts where it gets very very very cold.
- Becca tubing mascara (I think the formula’s changed)
- Green People mascara (need to check ingredients & research cheapest source when you take into account shipping to Canada)
- Essence Multi-Action mascara (ditto: cheap as chips in the EU, used to use their stuff when in Ireland)
- Physician’s Formula, the newer ones: used and disliked their older ones, not tried them for a good year or two
- ILIA mascara: my only hesitation here is that it’s very expensive, and my local/regional online sources all charge so much for postage that it works out nearly $40 a tube. Which is just stupid. So if the one or two places in Van claiming to have it actually do, I’ll be a happy bunny and test it out on myself.
Thing is: if Ilia were the only mascara in the whole world that worked on me, even then, I’d still hesitate to fork out the $40.
But plenty other cheaper mascaras work on me. So I could (and I’d argue I should, morally) save the difference and spend it better elsewhere: increasing monthly charity donations, for example. $30 is a lot. Add it up over a year, and you’re easily looking at buying goats and chickens and wells and cheap cell-phones for people in developing countries. Or sponsoring girls in education. See further:
- review Weleda Calendula Ointment, with some comparative notes on other Weleda moisturisers, and notes on other possible useful things for tackling winter dry skin
- re-review Allergenics emollient cream which is truly an amazeballs multi-tasking wonder, including usefulness as a leave-in hair thing for dry curly frizz-prone bits
- review LUSH Eyes Right mascara: quickie here and now though (which I might just copy and paste later, being a lazy person…):
brush = ace, especially for short-sighted people like me
packaging = good, all recyclable
formula = fail on me: feels like a good texture but I had an epic skin and eye reaction: got the stuff onto upper lashes of one eye, started to tear up and itch and inner rims and eyelid (next to lashes and between them) went red, started second, first eye felt sore by now and started to swell and try to close, ran to bathroom, removed it all.
hypothesis: either triethanolamine (a.k.a. TEA, with which I’ve had issues in the past in anything above a very low dose, and alas it’s in almost all tubing mascara…) or the fresh wheatgrass (which I’ve never knowingly applied to my eyes or near them). Full ingredients and other information here at the LUSH site.
- review stuff on MUA that I’ve been using over the last year or so and utterly failed to review over on there. Worse still, I’ve not written any reviews there for a year. Bad me. Copy-pasting here we go…
to my MakeupAlley notepad: which is now updatable without crashing. Albeit, as is all too often the case, if you’re not using a Windows OS you can’t avail yourself of wysiwyg editors and you’re back with old-fashioned hand-scripting. Oh well. Does the job.
Revamped notepad now reflects what’s on here. Most of it shouldn’t need updating for a while. But–golly gosh–I first put together that MUA notepad five (yes, 5) years ago. My MUA-birthday was on the 24th; I admit to having lurked for 2004-07 on another account (which I deleted when I “went active”), with which all I did was read reviews and board discussion, as a passive MUAer. But five years is an eternity in internet terms. Even more chilling, for anyone scared of aging: I built my first website and made my first Wikipedia edits ten years ago, first blogging shortly after, and first online chat (gulp) twenty years ago.
Makes you think. Encroaching old age. Senescence and senility, or wisdom and venerability? Me, I’m looking forward to Second Childhood. And to all my colouring changing, which will mean being able to wear all sorts of ginger-inappropriate things with impunity:
When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn’t go, and doesn’t suit me. Continue reading
My skin has varied over the years, as has what I’ve used on it. Now, my skin’s been sensitive all my life, for various reasons and in various ways. Some of that sensitivity is inbuilt: that’s how my skin happens to be built: physically thin and with genetic eczema, for starters. The first oil I ever experimented with was jojoba, in my teens. LOL. It was fashionable, what more can I say… In my late 20s to early 30s, my skin was more hormonally-charged. I tended to have better luck and results with oils that were somewhere around about 0-1 on the standard comedogenicity and irritancy indices; had a lower molecular weight; and were lower in oleic acid, lower in alpha-linolenic acid, and higher in linoleic and gamma-linolenic.
Some oils have been constants, from cradle to currently-nearer-the-grave: mineral, sweet almond, sunflower. I’d always prefer to use a plant-derived oil where possible. Not because I’m one of those fools who think mineral oil and petrolatum (Vaseline) are poisonous and evil because they’re actually petrol/gas/crude oil (chemistry 101 ROFL), but for reasons of sustainability. Factoring in costs of production and transportation, too.
Over the last couple of years, my skin’s been changing. Continue reading
I finally got around to updating my MUA notepad. Somehow, I’d not managed to for months: the last update was back in January, and that was when I just managed to update “date of last update” before other updates I tried crashed into error messages.
The MUA set-up just wouldn’t play along with my usual computer and my usual browsers (tried: FF, Safari, Chrome, Opera; not tried IE because, well, it’s IE). Oddly enough, updating worked on my computer at home: elderly MacBook that’s nearing the end of its days, so it’s been retired to a rest-home where it gets to sit on a comfy chair and interact very gently with people who treat is with care and due deference. It’s been in this state for a good year or so now: I thought the poor thing was going to die on me, partly as it’s been a real workhorse computer, had acquired a good few cracks and batterings in the course of everday life and much opening and closing of the lid, and was now identifiable in any line-up from the unique patchwork of sticky tape covering it.
Last actual update would have been about six months ago. A lot changes in six months. A-Derma no longer being cruelty-free meant major moves in all my skincare, not least the two basics of soap and moisturiser. Discovering meadowfoam seed oil has simplified everything: there’s now just one oil for all purposes, head to toe. I’ve circled around and poked around at other things, but ended up back with older stuff that works. I’ve been dabbling in buying things from Etsy.
Here’s the current list of things: more on some of them next week, most of the others have been covered on here previously. Continue reading
Going away for a long weekend, wheeeee!!!
The usual question: what to pack?
One bag, as ever. Heck, if people can go around the world with one bag, I can jollywell go away for a long weekend with one. Review now updated now I’ve packed the bag…
Outer shell of self: layers of clothes, many of them worn on person inc waterproof outermost layer; one pair of shoes, solid waterproof suitable for walking but also vaguely chic; small foldable woolly hat and gloves; sunglasses and sunhat; e-reading device; a small mobile phone-web-camera device plus charger; antihistamines, first aid basics, mini sewing kit, handkerchief, toothbrush, face-cloth, some reusable cotton pads.
Face & body & hair products, head to toe, all decanted into smaller containers (except scent):
- Free & Clear shampoo = shampoo + face cleanser + body wash
- Free & Clear conditioner = conditioner
- 50/50 mix Silk Naturals vitamin C peptide serum + Garden of Wisdom witch-hazel hydrosol = antioxidant layer
- Meadowfoam seed oil = face moisturiser + body moisturiser + hair oil (+ pre-cleaser, if need be, for sunscreen removal)
- 50/50 mix of NOW refined shea butter + Badger unscented olive oil & beeswax balm (yes, I finally got around to melting them down into a superbalm) = lip balm + eye cream + hand cream
- BurnOut Ocean Tested SPF 30 (ZnO) = face + eye-area + body sunscreen
- BurnOut SPF 30 coconut-flavour lip balm (ZnO) = lip + eye area sunscreen
- Naturally Fresh crystal rock spray (potassium alum aqu. soln.) = deodorant layer 1
- Desert Essence baby diaper cream = deodorant layer 2 + soother for rashes
- Illuminated Perfume Hedera Helix= solid scent
- Mirenésse tubing mascara
- Silk Naturals foundation, decanted into sample jar = eye concealer
- Silk Naturals kisser slicker lipstick in Bitten
- hairbrush, comb, lash-comb, mirror, nail-file, nail-scissors
All inside here:
One of the best oils I’ve used: for the usual multiple purposes. Mostly moisturising: face, body, hair. Also removing eye make-up, shaving armpits, etc. So why is it used so little? And when I say “little,” the main commercially-available cream that’s based on it, and one of the places where people will be most used to seeing the ingredients, is this complete and utter farce: Continue reading