Well here we are! I can’t believe that it’s December. Be prepared for the onslaught that is the silly season, complete with too much Lindauer and Snoopy’s Christmas.
I’m a bit of a mess at this time of year, especially when it comes to beauty things. All of a sudden, I need to go out and it takes me by surprise. I’ll end up busy and forget to do basics like shave my legs or pluck my eyebrows, leading me to have stray distracting hairs that aren’t doing me any favours.
I thought it would be a good idea to try and do things differently this year by getting myself booked in at Elderberry & Kate to see if I could bring down the stress levels. Booking some long-lasting beauty cheats that will mean getting ready throughout December will be a lot faster. In Wellington, my go-to is Elderberry & Kate (in the Spark building on Willis Street). I found Elderberry & Kate after getting some gel nails a few months back and have been going back ever since - especially because I love Mary-Kate, the owner, and INCREDIBLE team of women who perform treatments there (shout out to Nicole and Megan!). They’re an enthusiastic bunch who really care about their work and are very, very lovely.
Elderberry & Kate has SUCH a lovely atmosphere. Everything is marble and velvet with antique teacups - very much a relaxing and chic backdrop for your treatments - I basically want to move in. I know things get booked up in December so I decided to go in last week for two separate sessions, a spray tan and pedi/mani and eyes. The aim was to help me feel more organised in December, from top to toe, that reduces the amount of time it takes to get ready. Now, after a week, I can now review what these treatments are and how I found them.
1. Cheat One: Fake it til you make it!! - St Tropez Tan
I’ve had a couple of fake tans in my time, both at home and at a salon or spa. A fake tan can be a really nice way to help you feel more confident heading into Summer, especially when the weather changes and you find yourself out and about much more. I was SO impressed with my fake tan from Nicole at Elderberry & Kate. It was very even and light and perfect. I’ve found in the past some have gone too dark, and it makes me look like an extra from Geordie Shore.
Elderberry & Kate use St Tropez tan, and I really liked the formulation - not at all sticky or smelly. I even slept in it overnight so it could fully develop. Make sure you exfoliate first if you do get a tan - it helps the colour last longer, as does moisturising (2 weeks max). A fake tan really does make your life easier when you have to suddenly start to show more skin as the weather warms and the way Elderberry & Kate do it is that ‘just got back from holiday’ look, rather than Donald Trump - so know you’re in safe hands.
2. Cheat Two: Brow Tint and Eyelash Lift - Game-changer!
I’d heard about eyelash lifts from some of my favourite bloggers/YouTubers - so was excited to try this. If, like me, you have stick-like lashes, without much curl, a eyelash lift is for YOU. I loved the results through and through. Turns out I don't have crap lashes - just straight ones which are apparently long after all! Definitely one that EVERYONE should try - and it’s subtle. An eyelash lift will help your eyes stand out and as a bonus make your mascara look better.
I also opted to get my brows tinted which is something I think I’ll stick to going forward (I find although I have big bushy brows, as I’ve gotten older they’re softened a bit and are lighter in parts). Framing your face is SO important. It is great now that I don’t have to fill my brows in, making doing my makeup faster so I can get to the party earlier! I literally have not touched my brow pen since getting this done! It has changed my life.
3. Cheat Three: Gel mani-pedi please!
Elderberry & Kate use CigiSi gel nail polish (which is awesome) and, since trying it for a blog post earlier in 2017, I’ve been getting manicures all year. A nice nail pulls together any look, and you can choose from so many colours. I decided to play it safe and went for a pale pink tone. As usual, the results were fantastic and after two weeks are still going strong. Gels don’t ruin your nails if you get them removed correctly and also use a nourishing top coat in between.
As I’ll be getting my feet out more, a pedicure was in order. I was excited that I could get it to wear with my new shoe school shoes. The pink toes and nails were the perfect finish to complete this top to toe look for Summertime.
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