Recent Posts

Monday, 21 January 2019

Friday, 18 January 2019

Dior Forever Foundation

Dior’s forever foundation has had a makeover and has been reinvented into two new finishes, matte and glow.

Firstly the glow.
Lightweight, relatively undetectable on the skin with a light to medium coverage. Its glow is not as glowy as I was expecting. It’s more of a natural satin than a luminous radiance however it feels comfortably fluid on the skin with no caking or obvious settling into fine lines.

There are 31 shade options, which is great although most of these are at the lighter end of the spectrum with only really four shades for a deeper skin tone.
 Longevity is good and it doesn’t feel tacky on the skin as some glowing foundations do, and therefore suitable for all skin types including combination/oily.
 Easy to blend and work with and teams up nicely with either a firm brush or a looser stippling brush.

The matte.
Heavier than the glow and slightly more of a chalkier finish The finish is totally matte and dries off fast. Slightly less forgiving than the glow so if you have uneven texture or fine or deeper lines then it’s more settling on the glow.

 My skin is a little dehydrated at present and I found the glow was more flattering.
 36 shades to select from in this range and a better selection for deeper skin tones.

Both foundations are £37.00 and available here now.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

MAC In Monochrome Collection

With regards to fashion and home interiors, I’m not someone who likes matchy-matchy. I prefer a clashing look with interesting colour combinations and the same is true to a degree with regards to makeup. I can however really appreciate a monochromatic look in makeup. One tone that is applied in light strokes or in compacted layers to show tonal diversity. I think it shows skill to be able to make one tone interesting in so many ways and it adds an almost antiquated beautiful finish to a makeup look, reminiscent of the days when one product was used in a multitude of ways.
 Mac Cosmetics latest limited edition collection, ‘In Monochrome’ is compromised of key cult shades of the same tone but represented in different products.
 In the colour line up you can find a collection in Ruby Woo, See Sheer, Velvet Teddy, Candy Yum-Yum, heroine and Diva.
We have the Diva collection of shades to share with you. This shade range works on all skin tones and can be used to give a soft rosebud effect to the features or a full on sultry intense finish.
 Each shade line-up has eye shadows in various finishes, blusher, lipstick and lip gloss.Colour payoff is bold but workable and the blusher in particular is a beautiful 'just come in from a winter walk'look.

This collection is available now online here and at all MAC Free Standing locations.


Monday, 14 January 2019

Friday, 11 January 2019

Stila Stay all day waterproof brow colour

January always feels like the best time to strip your makeup back a little and put the emphasis back onto your skin and natural features.
 Stila have the perfect brow marker to suit this look if you’re after a natural tint and hair stroke finish.
 It’s a felt tip pen style applicator with a fairly long flexible tip. The liquid applies very naturally and even if you’re a little heavy handed, it’s an easy product to work with and correct.
 This brow marker comes in medium warm and dark as well as light ash, auburn, light brow (which is almost khaki_, and then 4 shades of varying grey shades. Possibly one of the most extensive range of greys I have seen which is fabulous.
Image from
 This brow product is also waterproof and lasts really well on the skin. When selecting your shade, you can afford to go a shade darker that you think you should as the tones come up on the lighter side.

Because this is a very natural finish product you may find you need to team it up with a secondary brow product to get the desired depth. What it’s good at is adding tone and imitating texture. It’s also a good product to experiment new brow shapes with as it lies down subtly and is easy to build.
Sam is wearing the shade in dark here and has also teamed it up with Surratt beauty Brow pomade for extra depth.

You can purchase Stila Stay all day brow colour here for £17.00


Wednesday, 9 January 2019

Murad Outsmart Blemish Clarifying Treatment

Over indulgence on sugary food and alcohol at Christmas, late nights of falling into bed without a through cleanse or just the general time of the month breakouts can leave your skin freaking out.
  If your blemish is deep under the skin or hasn’t come to the surface and presented as a white head then it’s always best to leave the area alone.
 When our skin is disobeying us we tend to resent it and be extra harsh on it when in fact now is the time you need to be gentle and nurturing.
Murad have devised a treatment gel, to work with your normal skincare regime day and evening. I have always had a tube of the Murad Rapid Relief acne spot treatment in my handbag for on the go application when I feel something brewing but their latest product, Outsmart Blemish Clarifying Treatment is a more intensive treatment that addresses multiple skin issues surrounding breakouts and acne. Rather than a ‘on the spot’ treatment it’s more of a thin serum.

It contains both AHA/BHA so will work at the top most layers of the skin to loosen and shift dead skin cells, which are often the culprits to blocked follicles. It leads to a smoother, less pigmented skin appearance and the Salicylic will also work hard to de-clog and act as a skin calmer too.
 There are also fatty acids found in Royal Jelly included, which will act as an anti-oxidant, nourish, reduce inflammation and aid skin repair.

So as you can see, this is good for those prone to breakouts or even those who just get a few crop up now and again. You can apply it after cleansing and alongside other hydrating serums such as Hyaluronic. Finish with normal application of moisturiser. You can also apply within your evening routine.

 This comes in a 50ml pump action tube which will last ages and costs £35.00. You can shop here.


Monday, 7 January 2019

Lily does my makeup

Easing us gently into 2019 with a makeup tutorial by Lily.


Monday, 24 December 2018

Beauty Therapist or Medical Practitioner for injectables?

There seems to be a rise in injectable and skin rejuvenation treatments that are being administered by Beauty Therapists. Beauty Therapist's are highly trained in certain areas of the industry and are exceptionally good at what they do however currently there is no legislation stopping a therapist from completing a day course and then offering treatments such as Botox and fillers to their clients. Although most may produce good results there are some pretty serious implications that are more likely to occur after treatment with a Beauty Therapist. We receive lots of emails from people asking our advice on where to go for various treatments and our personal opinion is that if you are wanting an injectable treatment then you should only be visiting a fully qualified medical practitioner. We wanted to highlight this and have interviewed Dr Amber Woodcock for her expert opinion on this subject.
Tell us about yourself and your clinic

I always wanted to be a doctor! I had a little doctor’s case and red cross armband when I was younger. I spent a lot of time in hospital as a child with a rare inherited kidney disorder. I used to feel right at home and regularly would watch casualty and all manner of cheesy television hospital dramas. The rest as they say is history!

I graduated as a Doctor in 2012 and entered NHS training in Norfolk, I studied for my post graduate exams and continued to work up the career ladder, currently employed as a medical registrar.

I started my cosmetics clinic in 2016 and have worked extremely hard to grow my business over the last 3 years. I have invested heavily into the clinic, attending many training courses, conferences and always offering the latest and safest treatments for my patients. I love achieving natural results for my patients and increasing their confidence.

I am excited to see what the future brings and it’s my pleasure to offer patients a safe and relaxed environment for their treatments.

What medical/professional training did you obtain before you began offering injectable and chemical/rejuvenation treatments?

I pursued my dream to become a doctor despite many obstacles. I first studied biomedical science in Nottingham. I then went onto study my MBBS at UEA and graduated with distinction in 2012. I continued studying and took my post graduate exams and became a member of the Royal College of Physicians.

I undertook my initial training in botulinum toxin and fillers at the cosmetic courses academy. From there I studied many advanced techniques in 1-1 training and small groups. I have also undertaken advanced anatomy/complications workshops.

My advanced skincare training has been undertaken over several sessions and includes microneedling, chemical resurfacing and platelet rich plasma treatment.
Every year I attend several new training courses and conferences to expand my skills and maintain my knowledge.  As a medical professional I also undergo a yearly appraisal to maintain my professional and ethical standards.

What do you think of the rise in high street beauty therapy based clinics offering injectables/certain skin rejuvenation treatments?

It’s certainly a concern. The cosmetic industry is highly unregulated at present, leading to real confusion as to what is safe and what isn’t. They key thing here is that nobody is out to insult or criticise non medics. It boils down to patient safety, injectable products and drugs are potentially dangerous and have serious life changing side effects. For that reason, they should only ever be administered by experienced medical professionals.

Many patients who visit my clinic (and have had treatments elsewhere) have never been told that lip fillers can cause you to go blind. Yet this is a well-known complication and should be discussed at every treatment. As a doctor in a busy hospital I have to discuss difficult topics every day and therefore this is very familiar to me. For someone who isn’t used to taking informed consent for serious procedures there is potential for lots of relevant and important information to be missed out.
There is no doubt that some non-medics have produced beautiful work, but at the end of the day the potential risks and side effects are so great that the procedure should only ever be performed by medical professionals.

Are there any differences in the quality of formulations in the products a beauty therapist can offer compared to a medical practitioner? Are there certain laws preventing them obtaining safe formulations?

Many top quality filler and toxin brands don’t endorse non medics injecting. However, as with all products, there is sadly a black market and they can be purchased easily online. Whether these products are legitimate or safe is another question.

As a medical professional with a prescribing license, I can order my products direct from a registered pharmacy knowing they are safe, sterile and genuine.

A non-medic cannot order from a pharmacy, if they want to order botulinum toxin or emergency drugs for example, they will have to pay somebody to prescribe it for them. 

With regards to skincare and chemical resurfacing, the high strength solutions are prescription only and should only ever be purchased direct from the company or pharmacy to ensure safe and genuine products.

If a treatment were to go wrong I.e allergic reaction/bleed/damage would a medical practitioner have access to different remedies to help the issue that say a Beauty therapist would?

Absolutely. A medical practitioner should have years of training and then even more years of working in hospitals/emergency environments. This provides a wealth of knowledge, experience and a very unique skill set.

As a doctor I can also legally carry stock of drugs in my clinic for an emergency, eg oxygen, adrenaline, antibiotics etc. A key drug I must stock is hyalase, the drug which dissolves fillers in an emergency. Somebody who has no prescribing license (e.g a non-medical professional) cannot legally obtain these drugs without a prescription. They would have to pay somebody to prescribe them for them or to obtain them illegally from other sources.

 I am also a member of the aesthetics complications expert group which provides researched complications guidelines and a network of medical professional support all over the UK.

What is the current legislation/insurance with regards to offering these treatments?

There is currently no legislation in England with regards to cosmetic treatments. Anybody can order what they like off the internet, do a one-day course (which isn’t even mandatory) and call themselves a cosmetics clinic. It is terrifying. Unfortunately, the public want to save money and will be enticed by bargain prices and special offers.

If something seems cheap, there is usually a reason for it.

The top cosmetic insurance companies insure medics only, but there are several insurance companies which will now insure non medics to inject.

If someone were to go to a high street salon or non-medical professional for treatment, what questions would you advise them to ask and what warning signs should they look out for? I.e are there certain ‘good’ courses a therapist may have attended that would at least set them apart from someone offering Botox in the window of Superdrug!

My first rule of advice would be to always see a medical professional for any cosmetic treatment. Once at your chosen medical clinic, they key things to look out for are
What training have they done? Are they a prescriber? Do they do further training each year to keep their skills up to date?
Do they have patient reviews you can read?
Do they have before and after photos you can see? Is the clinic clean and tidy?
Is there adequate information, written/verbal about your chosen treatment?
Can they answer all your questions about potential complications and how they would manage these?
And most importantly, do you feel comfortable and safe in their hands?

Can anyone apply for a course to learn how to do these treatments?

Most reputable companies train medical professionals only. However, there are an alarming number of training companies, some even calling themselves “universities” who will train anybody.

How would you like to see the industry change or become more regulated?

I would like legislation put in place which makes it illegal for a non-medic to perform specific cosmetic treatments. Therefore, anyone other than a medical professional offering it will be breaking the law. This is the only way to offer some protection to the vulnerable public.

Any final words of wisdom?

Don’t rush into having a cosmetic treatment and don’t ever be pressured into having more than you want done. A good and ethical practitioner will always give you as long as you need to make your decision. A good professional clinic will carry out a consultation separate to your treatment. Cosmetic clinics should not be a “one stop shop”.

Where can we visit you?
You can visit me at my clinic in Surlingham, Norwich. I am based in a lovely peaceful village with parking and upmost privacy. Simply contact me through my website email, Instagram – @Cosmeticsdoctor and facebook – cosmeticsdoctor.

Thanks so much Amber

*We are not affiliated with Dr Amber Woodcock and approached Dr Woodcock for interview based on her years of expertise in the industry.

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