Happy and Healthy Nails

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If you read my recent post on Jessica Nails [here], you’ll be well aware of the fact that I suffer from a severe case of weakened nails. However, they’re growing stronger than ever, and that’s with thanks to a few fool-proof products that I know I won’t be living without any time soon.

 

While I was raving about some of the new colours from the Jessica Nails collection, I admit that two of the products I will be chatting about in this post are also from Jessica Nails. I don’t normally go on about just one particular brand, but on this occasion I have to make an exception as they’ve really worked for me!

1. Jessica Nails Phenomenon Oil (€10.15)

Anytime you get your nails done by a professional nailtician, they’ll usually encourage you to use a cuticle oil to help strengthen your nails. And they aren’t lying. It’s one of the best products you can use on your nails and I swear by Jessica Nail’s Phenomenon Oil. This oil is an intensive moisturiser which conditions and softens your cuticles, which is crucial for healthy and strong nail growth. It also works to heal and hydrate your nails with natural jojoba, almond and rice oils.

Tip: Keep it on your desk or beside your bed and massage into your nails as often as you can.

Oh, and it can also be used on dry skin areas too such as your elbows or needs. Multifunctional!

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2. Vaseline healthy hands + stronger nails

I’ve tried tons of hand and nail creams and I always return to this one. It’s one of my favourites, I use it multiple times during the day and always notice a difference in both the skin on my hands and my nails. It encourages healthy nail growth as well as stronger nails and doesn’t leave a greasy residue. For a product that costs just €4.19 (approx), it’s a no-brainer.

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 3. Nailtiques Nail Protein formula 2

Formulated especially for those with weak, soft and peeling nails, this is the one product I’ve used that I notice an immediate difference in the strength of my nails. It was designed especially for former gel and acrylic nail wearers and so stimulates rapid growth and nail strengthening. At approximately €21.50, it is a bit on the more expensive side, but if you are looking for a quick improvement, your money will go a long way.

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4. High Gloss in a Flash by Jessica Nails (€16.30)

This one isn’t exactly a strengthening product, but it works really well when encouraging your nails to grow healthily. It’s a high gloss and when used as a top coat, it dries in a flash – literally a minimum waiting time – while providing a sheer gloss finish in seconds. When I’ve worn this over coats of nail colour, I’ve had people ask me if I’m wearing shellac. I love it. And why does it help in keeping your nails healthy? Its UV inhibitors and reflective polymers mean less chipping, which result in longer lasting colour, and more chip-free time for your nails to grow.

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Bestseller AW14 Fashion Festival

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Pictured at the Fashion Festival with my gorgeous mum Mary and the lovely Laura Webb!

In the next installment of Autumn/Winter fashion fever, Danish fashion company Bestseller has introduced its brand new collections to the Irish market. And in a rather unique getup, the collections were featured as part of an exciting fashion festival held at Bestseller Headquarters in Ballymount, Dublin.

Bestseller is the parent brand for Vera Moda, Only, Noisy May, Object collectors Item, Vila Clothes, Y.A.S and Jack & Jones, as well as accessories brand Pieces, to name just a few.

Last week, the brand pulled out all the stops to launch their AW14 collection with the help of delicious canapés, cocktails and music, and featured their collections like a trip to the high street. Each clothing brand had its own room to wander through the collections, while a catwalk was set up for the highlight of the night; the Bestseller Fashion Show.

Top Irish models strutted along the catwalk and the event was MC’d by Glenda Gilson and Mike Sheridan. And since it wouldn’t be a festival in Ireland without the all-important tuuunes, the fashion posse were also treated to a post-show performance by Featuring X (an all-girl Indie quintet), Travis Oaks and, as a surprise guest, The Riptide Movement.

So here’s just a taster of what we expect from next season’s Bestseller collections:

Vila

My favourite city is the inspiration behind the autumn collection for Vila this year, with a ‘stroll down Paris’ boulevards and avenues’ summing up next season’s look for the store. It’s all about the girl who is the heart and soul of fashionable Paris, but can throw together a look faster than you can say ‘bonjour’.

Vila will be featuring feminine pinks, floral prints and delicate touches of lace, along with city vibes of fitted skinny jeans and bold textures.

 

Jacqueline de Yong

If you’re unfamiliar with the name, then you’re not on your own but it won’t be for long. Jacqueline de Yong is a newly founded sub-brand of ONLY which was introduced only last year. It’s available to buy in ONLY stores and offers a fresh new take on the essential wardrobe for the price-conscious fashionista!

This autumn, it’s more grunge meets chic, but without a hefty price tag. We can expect typography tees and jumpers, along with a collection of bold and colourful prints and laid back denim.

Y.A.S

Probably one of my favourite stores at the moment, Y.A.S is the ultimate in understated coolness. The collections for this brand feature mostly around dresses, leather items and great tailoring and are always presented in a really fashion-forward way. The look book for pre-Spring ’15 features page after page of outfits I would love to keep in my wardrobe – classic leather jackets, soft tailored blazers and cropped trousers, utility skirts and feminine shirts. The type of purchases that are often considered key investment pieces!

Jessica Nails: In Bloom

JESSICA Nails In Bloom Summer Collection 2014

I’ve been working hard to bring my own nails back to good health in recent months, following a few years on a bender with gel nails, which unfortunately were preceded by a long stint of acrylic nails. A bit prehistoric I know, but even since then, it has seriously taken my nails years to recover.

I also dabbled a bit in shellac, which I still love, but with my nails naturally being quite weak and brittle, I’ve discovered that the best thing for my own nails is to make the most of them just as they are.

Having brittle nails means that nail colours chip much sooner than they should and being able to do a DIY job at home is crucial. That’s why I love when I find a nail colour that I love and can count on.

Enter Jessica Nails.

I’ve only used Jessica Nails when getting manicures in salons, but I tried two colours from Jessica Nails’ most recent summer collection recently and already want to build my Jessica collection at home.

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Jessica Vartoughian is the master behind Jessica Nails, and when I found out that she was the first person to ever open a ‘nails only salon’ in the world, as well as being the woman responsible for inventing the French Manicure in 1979 (thanks for that, by the way), I discovered an even bigger fondness for the brand.

It’s already loved by tons of celebs and used in the majority of nail salons the world over, and Jessica Nails just launched its ‘In Bloom’ collection for Summer 2014.

The collection is made up of six garden-inspired colours, ranging from soft blues and lilacs to a subtle mint green.

I first tried the bold blue called ‘Longing’, and loved the deep shade. Dark colours are great for making shorter nails appear longer while waiting for them to grow, and this particular blue was perfect for making a statement.

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I fell in love with this particular shade; ‘Loving’, a warm pink colour that is perfect for adding a touch of elegance and femininity without being too ‘pink’. It’s the type of colour that you could wear all year round and ideal for taking a more subtle approach to a special occasion.

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The next colour on my must-try list is the ‘Whispering’ Mint Green. Let me know if you decide to try and what you think!

Each colour in the collection is priced at just €12.95 and is available to buy at salons nationwide, or online at www.frenchbeautyroom.com.

Keep an eye out for my tips for strengthening nails later this week!

 

 

 

Space NK Lust List

There was some serious excitement in the beautysphere recently with the grand opening of Ireland’s first standalone Space NK store. If you’re a beauty nerd or follow any beauty blogs at all, you’ll already be aware of the importance of this big news, but for those of you who are not, I’ll briefly explain:

Space NK isn’t just any old make up store; it’s an emporium and home to some of the most luxurious beauty brands in the world. It’s British, has stores in London and New York, and was founded by Nicky Kinnaird (hence the NK) just over 20 years ago.

The store (apothecary – ‘scuse me!) features make-up, skincare and hair care brands, some of which we’ve never really had the pleasure of sampling on the back of our hands before. Some of the tempting brands to lust over include Sunday Riley (a major beauty go-to on runways around the world), Eve Lom, By Terry, Lipstick Queen, Hourglass, Sarah Chapman and Oribe.

It took an overwhelming amount of willpower not to blow all my life savings on a spree on my first visit and indulged instead on simply exploring all the brands and making a lust list instead…

 

 

Ambient Lightning Blush by Hourglass
I’m familiar with the brand only because of what I’ve read on other blogs and can’t wait to try Hourglass. I particularly love the look of this lightweight blusher which comes in six shades. This one here is ‘Diffused Heat’.

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Cell Revitalise Day Moisturiser by Aurelia
I didn’t know this brand at all before Space NK arrived but I did receive a sample of this moisturiser and absolutely love it. Hence its place on my lust list! The luxurious cream is whipped, with a mousse-type texture to it, and it gives skin a gorgeous glow while hydrating dull skin.

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Cheek to Cheek by By Terry
So this one is for the days when I’m not in the mood for a powder blush. I’m a big fan of cream blush as it is, but I’m dying to try Cheek by Cheek. It’s a brand new syrup blusher that’s made from 100% water. It gives baby soft pink cheeks and a subtle satin finish. Want!

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Anti-feathering lip pencil by Laura Mercier
I’ve been meaning to get a nude-coloured lip pencil for a while and love the look of this lip pencil in ‘Naked’ by Laura Mercier. Designed to outline and enhance the natural shape of your lip, the nude-coloured pencil is ideal for wearing everyday, and can be used simply with a lipgloss.

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Skinny Liquid Eyeliner by Eyeko
Eyeliner is one of those cult beauty products I know I will never live without and I’ve heard great things about this particular one by Eyeko. It is designed with an easy-to-control pen and a preservative-free formula and it promises a long lasting finish. I can’t wait to add this one to my make-up kit!

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What I did buy:

It’s not the type of place where you can easily leave empty handed, there’s just too much that I want. So I did treat myself to one particular product I’ve been eyeing up; eye do by eyeko. Eyeko is a brand that is fronted by Alexa Chung, so you know it’s cool. This isn’t just a mascara, but a treatment for your lashes too. It’s water resistant (but easily removed with eye make-up remover) and contains lash-enhancing botanicals too.
It features an over-sized mascara brush which creates clump-free volume and the carbon black colour adds depth and long-lasting colour.
It also has a unique tube-style packaging, which means less wastage.
It’s my new favourite mascara and for €25, a purchase that won’t break the bank!

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Visit http://uk.spacenk.com/ for more information on the brands available. Space NK is located opposite BT2 on Dublin’s Grafton Street. You’ll come out with an empty wallet but I promise it will be worth it. And you’ll look amazing too.