Thursday, 28 April 2016

Tips For Creating Volume in Fine Hair

One of the most common things that I get asked as a hairstylist is how to achieve volume in fine hair. As a race, we are never happy with our appearance, and are always trying to seek out the opposite of what we have. With hair in particular, the curly-haired girls want straight sleek hair, and equally the straight-haired ladies just want voluminous curls!
One thing I love about my job is being able to transform people and create characters in my photoshoots. I think it is wonderful nowadays that we have the technology available to allow us to play around and look completely different one day to the next. That's the exciting part; with the right tools and knowledge almost anything is achievable.....until you next wash it anyway!

Here are my top tips for creating volume if you have fine hair:

Use Products....But Just a Little

There are so many products out there that guarantee to give you volume, however it is so important to not overload the hair. If you coat your hair, in the hope that more equates to more volume, then you are doing it wrong. You will weigh your hair down, so the product will end up having the opposite effect. I would recommend a root lift spray, and also perhaps a little mousse through the mid lengths and ends as well.

Dry Your Hair UpSide Down

This may be an obvious one to some of you, but use gravity to your advantage! You want your hair to dry with your roots standing up, so tipping your head upside down will keep those hairs in the right direction whilst they dry.

Do Not Use a Nozzle

A nozzle attachment on the end of a hairdryer is designed to direct heat intensely into one area. This is perfect if you are blowdrying frizzy hair into a straight look, however if you have fine hair, it will smooth your hair cuticle down too much and take away the texture that you need. Take the nozzle off, so that the heat is distributed more evenly and you won't over-heat any areas.

Velcro Rollers

This old school technique really does work, trust me. The velcro version is better than the heated kind for adding volume, rather than a curl. Once your hair is dry, pop a few into your hair around your hairline and on top of your head, working back to the crown. Hold them in place with a section clip, so that they stay tightly in there, and then give them a little spritz with hairspray.
Then, with your hairdryer, just give the rollers a quick blast of heat again each, and then allow them to cool and set for as long as possible.


To add in extra oomph at the roots, then backcombing is a handy thing to know. Again, this technique has been around for years, but done well, it does work. You can even backcomb the roots slightly before putting your rollers in for added hold.
The trick here is to keep the backcombing disguised as much as possible, and not looking like a birds nest! When you have combed away, then lightly brush over the top of the section of hair, so that this looks smooth.

Pin Curling

If you are wanting to use tongs to create curls or waves in fine hair, then a great tip is to pin curl.
It is the process of cooling down in a shape that allows our hair to set that way. So you don't want to spend hours curling little sections of your hair and then letting them hang down whilst they cool. Once you take a section out of the tong, re-curl it towards the root and then pin it there. Again, you can spray them and re-heat, just like with the rollers, and then leave them pinned up for as long as possible. Before you go out, simply release the pins and then shake your hair upside down, softening the curls. It is always good to create tighter curls, if you are wanting them to last all day.

Scrunch Your Hair Up Overnight

If you have been lucky enough to keep the volume or curls all day, then sleeping on them will be a sure way to flatten them straight away. Tip your head upside down and gather all of your hair at the top of your head and loosely tie it there in a messy bun. This will keep your roots upwards and the curls should last within the bun, as they are twisted and not being dragged down.

I hope these tips can be helpful to some of you. Please let me know if you try any or would like advice on a different topic soon...


Monday, 25 April 2016

My Remedy For A Bleached Scalp

Anyone who wasn't lucky enough to be born Scandinavian and keep their super white blonde hair past the age of 5 ( I can dream!), will probably have considered or gone through with a full scalp bleach at some point in their lives. Especially if you are a fan of creating the unicorn/mermaid look, like I am, and colouring your locks a beautiful pastel shade.
I have always been a highlights kinda girl myself. Even whilst working in some top West End salons, where I could have taken the plunge and have experts experiment on my hair free of charge...I was always too scared.
A few months ago when I decided to go full on pink, I realised that my dream shade was just not going to be achievable with merely highlights alone. My hairdresser, who I completely trust, suggested we went for it and in a moment of bravery I said yes.
I must admit that I haven't looked back since. The finished blonde is so much whiter and cleaner, and seeing that I am a mousey blonde naturally, the re-growth isn't too bad either.
One thing that I have found though is that my scalp does get sensitive for a few days after being bleached. This is to be expected, and for me; a beauty addict, it is definitely worth it for the result. Beauty over pain and all that jazz!

Last week when I had my roots touched up and got home, I started to feel the tightness over my scalp and it felt quite dry. Almost like a mild sunburn. I decided to try and concoct my own remedy to soothe it. What I tried really seemed to work for me, so I wanted to share it with you all.

In a bowl I mixed 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and then a few pumps of Propolis Gel from SBC. I then massaged this onto my scalp and left it on overnight, before washing my hair in the morning.

I'm sure you have all heard the amazing benefits of coconut oil by now, but honestly it really is so great for your skin. It's moisturising and gentle and completely natural, which is a huge plus.
If you haven't heard of Propolis Gel yet, then it is also a fantastic nourishing skincare product. It is created by bees and is used as a coating to build their hives. For thousands of years it has been used for its healing properties, so I thought this was a must for my concoction. It is sold by SBC as a water-based gel, so it isn't sticky and easily absorbed into the skin. It is also anti-bacterial, and a natural antibiotic. It is recommended for soothing sensitive, chapped skin and aiding the healing process.

Once applied, it instantly felt cooling and soothing, and the tightness almost disappeared. The next morning after washing, I also noticed a big difference to my scalp. It was much softer and much less sensitive, with almost no dry areas. It also was completely back to normal within 2 days, which I was very happy with.

So if you are a regular hair bleacher, or are considering going for it but worried about the affects, then give this remedy a try and let me know how it works for you.


Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Signs and Messages From Our Loved Ones

Since my mum was diagnosed and especially since she passed away, the topic of spirituality has been in the forefront of my mind.
I was christened a Catholic, was brought up by Catholic parents, and even went to a Catholic primary school. However, neither my mum nor dad were very strict and as we got older we started to go to church less and less.
I never felt like I was really a religious person. I was taught how to pray when I was younger, but if I ever did then I usually chose to talk to my grandparents who had passed, rather than to God himself.
We all seem to be bred to think that talking about death is a taboo subject. It's extremely sad and frightening to us, as it is the unknown, however it is unfortunately the only certain thing in life.
When you are faced with the possibility of losing someone you love, then suddenly you desperately want to know what happens next. Is there a God? Is there an afterlife?

I have always loved to find pennies on the floor. Ask anyone who knows me well, and I am always squatting down to pick up a shiny new penny that I spot....anywhere it may be! I loved the phrase 'see a penny pick it up, then all day you'll have good luck.'
Who knows where these little sayings originated from, but for me, if I find one then I genuinely feel luckier. My mum knew of my strange habit, and told me that white feathers are also meant to be lucky. They say that they are feathers sent down from an angel in heaven watching over you.
If you haven't cottoned on yet...this is where my blog name originated love of finding pennies and feathers.

It's strange that it now feels more relevant than ever. My mum's family were also Catholic, but they all had a strong sense of spirituality. After my grandfather passed away when I was little, we had lots of little signs and what we believed to be messages from him. My grandma had a plant which would never flower when it was supposed to, however if a family event was nearing or if there was a problem in the family healthwise, then a flower would always suddenly appear out of nowhere.
Also, when my cousin was little and first started school, he very matter-of-factly went home and told my auntie that he had grandad sitting next to him all day.

Now I am very aware that we do not know if these are actual signs or whether they are merely a coincidence. However, if they bring someone who is grieving comfort, then what is the harm?
I'm sure that we all love the idea of having guardian angels and knowing that our loved ones can still protect us and be with us.

Before my mum passed away, she told me that she believes that a great love cannot just disappear. She told me that if there is anything after we pass, and there was a way that we can communicate and leave signs, then she would. I told her that it must be through pennies and feathers.
Now, each time I see a white feather in my path, then I have a better day. A few months ago I even found a beautiful white feather sitting in the hallway of my house. I hadn't left the house that day and I had hoovered and cleaned, so where did it come from? To me, it was my mum telling me that she is still around. Whether it is or not, I feel happier and am able to cope better, so that is all that matters.
I put the feathers that I find into picture frames so that I can keep them and be reminded.

It really is the small things in life that matter, and the strangest things can bring someone hope, courage and happiness.

I would love to hear if anyone has any similar thoughts or stories...let me know xx


Saturday, 16 April 2016

How To Create Kylie Jenner's Lips: LipKit Review

A few weeks ago I was sitting on my bathroom floor, taking my makeup off, with my phone by my side, waiting for it to hit midnight. This may seem an unusual thing to share with you, but I was waiting for something pretty important. Well...important if you are interested in beauty and makeup anyway!
Kylie Jenner was re-stocking her Lip Kit's on her website and I was determined to get one. They have been selling out so fast and I have heard really good things, so this was a need situation. I need my lips to look as great as Kylie's...minus the fillers!
I went to bed very happy that night, as I managed to get my hands on a Posie K kit, despite the site crashing many times during my transaction....cue lots of panicking lol!

So fast forward a bit, and here it is. I now have the product in my hands and more importantly on my lips. I have worn it for a few days to test it out, so thought I would share my review with you.

The kit contains a liquid lipstick, as well as a lip liner in a matching shade. I really loved how well the liner applied. It is super soft and glides well, without that scratching feeling over the lips. The pigment is great too.
Then, whilst looking like a true chola girl, I applied the lipstick. The doe foot applicator is again very soft, and I was impressed by how easily it allowed me apply and create a neat shape. The colour pay off is instant and strong. There was no need to do a second coat, and it dried pretty quickly, to create the matte finish.
The only negative I have found is that the lid on my liner doesn't have much suction, so it does keep falling off.
I have mentioned previously that I usually veer away from matte lip products, as even though I adore the look they give, my lips do tend to get dry and cracked, especially in the winter, and so I do need the added moisture.
However, I was very happy to find that this left me feeling very comfortable all day, and wasn't too drying at all.
The colour also lasted really well throughout the day. I applied it at around 10am and only needed to re-apply at about 4-5pm. It even survived through a rather greasy pizza lunch! ( I obviously was allowed to eat this, purely for the test haha).

The Posie K is a lovely rich, berry/plum shade, and I think it will look gorgeous on a lot of skin tones.

So if you are into long-lasting matte lips, then I would definitely recommend picking up some of these. Kylie tends to keep you updated on her snapchat when they are being re-stocked, so keep your eyes out!


Tuesday, 12 April 2016

My Top Tips for Choosing and Applying Foundation

I am always surprised by the amount of people and clients I meet that are too frightened to wear or buy foundation and don't have the confidence to apply it.
A few weeks ago I met a lovely lady, who was probably in her forties and had never touched the stuff. She approached me sheepishly at an event, and was interested to try and learn, but was pretty convinced that it 'would not suit her skin'. 
I was over the moon when I saw her face light up after looking in the mirror. She felt as though her face had been airbrushed but couldn't see or feel the product on her skin.
This is how foundation should always make you look and feel, so I thought that I would share my tips and tricks on here. 
I'm sure that lots of you are amazing at applying and choosing makeup, but for anyone that is a little nervous, I hope this helps.

Choosing the Correct Colour 

This is probably the most important step and one that so many people struggle with. We have all seen that girl out and about who has an orange face and a very obvious line ending on her jaw and hairline, only to continue into a very different colour neck and hands. Not a good look!
The best advice that I can give to you is to swatch the foundation in the shop before buying. However, do not test the colour on the back of your hands....your hands are always a different colour to your face. This is where many people go wrong. The place to test the product is on your jawline. This way you can see how it matches against your face AND your neck. The right colour will blend in seamlessly and once rubbed in, you should not be able to see it. 

The Purpose of Foundation 

A lot of people who want to look a little more tanned, will be tempted to buy a darker foundation than their skin tone, to 'tan them up'. This is a big mistake. The purpose of foundation is simply to even out your skin tone and give a flawless base for the rest of your makeup. This is why you must choose a colour that matches your true skin tone, not your desired one. Remember your hands are always on show too, so the difference will be noticeable.
If you want to warm your skin up afterwards, that is where bronzers come into play.


I was always taught during my makeup training that the best makeup is when someone says 'wow you look amazing today', not 'wow your makeup looks great'.
The difference is learning to enhance your natural features, and skin in particular, so you look radiant and fresh, not caked in product.
The key to achieving this finish is, surprise surprise, not applying too much foundation and blending well. You can always add, but it is much harder to take away. 
Remember, you are simply trying to even out your skin, so these are the places where you mainly need the product. On myself and my clients I always work from the centre of the face first and then outwards. Generally, most of your redness and blemishes will be in your t-zone, so using a brush or fingers, work some product onto and around your nose, on your chin, forehead and around your eyes. Then, with whatever is left on the brush, blend outwards towards your cheeks and hairline. This way, there will be no build up around your hairline or jaw, as the concentration of foundation will gradually thin out.
If you do need a fuller coverage everywhere, then make sure to bring the brush down your neck a little too, to match it up, and not forgetting on your ears too.

Also, bear in mind your own skin. Are you wearing a base purely because you think you should? If you are lucky enough to have pretty even skin naturally, then maybe just look at using a tinted moisturiser or just concealer to pin point any small areas. 

To round up, you want your skin to look like skin. The best makeup artists usually won't want to fully cover and create a mask. They will cover what is needed but still leave freckles and a little glow to show through. It is in fact ageing to have a completely matte face.

So have fun, play and enjoy creating the best version of yourself. 


Wednesday, 6 April 2016

How To Get Rose Gold Locks: My Bleach London Rose Review

At the end of last year I posted about my growing obsession with pastel pink hair. I wasn't sure whether to take the plunge, and for those of you who follow me on Instagram will know, I went for it.
I posted a link to my video with my first impressions of using the Bleach London Rose products, however I want to share with you my full review now that I have been using them for a few months.

To delve straight in....I love them. My hairdresser and I chose to use the Bleach London range as this way I am able to keep it topped up at home, without the need to rush back to the salon so soon. Also, being a semi-permanent colour it was a great way to try it out without fully committing.

Firstly, I really like the packaging. I think it's modern and fun, and it helps that you can see the hair colour through the bottle, so you know what shade you are getting. 
When you open the bottle up, it smells delicious too. It is a sweet, marshmallowy scent (I think anyway...I am terrible at describing smells!) and it has a lovely soft consistency which is easy to apply. 

Once your hair has been shampooed and towel dried, you simply massage the colour in all over your hair and leave it on for 20 minutes. I have found that as the colour is a pastel, you don't have to panic if you think you might have slightly missed a bit, as it is fairly subtle and tends to blend in once it is dried anyway.
Once it has developed and been washed off, it leaves my hair a gorgeous shade of rose gold pink. It's super soft and pretty- who doesn't love rose gold at the moment!

This is after an at-home application by myself.....yes it was Easter, hence the bunny ears!

When my hairdresser has applied it for me in the salon, it has come out as a stronger shade of pink, which is equally gorgeous. This is because after my hair has been bleached, she applies a toner, to achieve a cooler, whiter shade. The toner has purple in, so this as a base under the pink, really helps to rev the colour up a notch. 

My stronger pink hair, after the toner in the salon.

One thing that I adore about this range, is the shampoo and conditioner. I think it's a genius idea to add a touch of the hair colour into both products. Any pastel hair lovers will know that these soft, unnatural tones don't last for long on your hair. They basically just stain the outside, so I found that using the matching shampoo and conditioner helped massively to keep the colour for longer. 
It just tops it up each time you wash it. As I said, genius!

However, inevitably, as the pink does fade, a bonus is that it doesn't leave my hair looking a strange in-between colour.....which I have experienced previously! It fades beautifully and evenly, back into a true bright blonde. So I have really been enjoying having the option of easily being a pink princess (in my head lol!) and a cool white blonde too.

So to round up, I would highly recommend using the Bleach London Rose products to anyone wanting a change and gorgeous rose gold locks. One thing to mention, which most of you will know anyway, is that your hair does have to be pre-lightened to a very light blonde beforehand to get the best results. On brunette or dark blonde hair, the pink will hardly be noticeable.
As you can see from some of my images, the ends of my hair are slightly darker than the roots. Due to them being so much older and more prone to damage, we chose not to add any more bleach, as I love to keep my hair as long as possible. Therefore, the pink doesn't hold as well here, and is a slightly different shade.

If you are interested in picking up some for yourself, you can buy it from Boots stores. Just to note-I stocked up this week, as this post goes live, and the Bleach products were on offer for 'buy 3 for the price of 2'. So go check them out :)

Let me know if you have found any great pastel hair colours...


Sunday, 3 April 2016

The Must Have Spring Jacket

Jacket: TopShop, Bag: Mulberry Del Rey
Now that Spring has finally decided to appear, and we are occasionally starting to see a hint of sun, I felt like it was time to consider putting my winter coats away, and reach for something a little lighter.
I have a slight coat obsession which I will happily own up to, but one thing that my wardrobe was definitely lacking was a lightweight, pretty jacket.

I walked into Topshop last week and my eyes were instantly drawn to this beauty. Firstly, the colour is so beautiful; a perfect blush pink. I was also attracted to the classic trench style cut. This is so timeless and never goes out of fashion, so it will definitely be a piece that I can wear year after year.
The added material, which almost looks like a waistcoat over the jacket, hangs really well and makes the overall look really smart. You could easily wear this to a meeting and then out for cocktails with the girls.
There is also a belt that can be fastened around the waist to cinch you in and give a lovely hourglass shape. 

I'm so happy with this purchase, and think it looks great with a classic black bag. I styled it with my Mulberry Del Rey.

Let me know if you have found any new pieces for is the link below:

© Pennies and Feathers. All rights reserved.
Blogger Templates made by pipdig