Spring into Summer – At Home Pedicures

It’s officially sandal season! As I type this, Irish ladies are ditching their ankle boots and court shoes in favour of more breathable footwear options. We’ve had a spell of good weather lately and I think that we all have our fingers and toes crossed for the sunshine to stay awhile longer. With this in mind, I thought I would write a little post about keeping those toes in good condition, after hiding them in socks for the past few months.

As soon as the sun makes an appearance, salons everywhere are swarmed by those seeking last minute pedicure appointments. So, if your salon is fully booked or you just want to save yourself a small fortune, here’s my guide to a perfect “at home” pedicure.

 

Step 1: Remove Dead Skin.

 

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Bellamianta “Luxury Exfoliating Glove” (€9.95) – Available Here.

Rather than using a body scrub filled with micro-beads, I usually opt to exfoliate using some shower gel and this glove/mitt from Bellamianta. It’s a really gentle way to remove dead skin from the body and the feet and it’s brilliant for removing stubborn false tan streaks. The glove is also really cost effective. At only €10, you can treat it with care and you’ll have it for months!

 

Photo:Andrew Downes

Micro Pedi Nano (€29.95) – Available Here.

If your feet are particularly neglected, this is a great little gadget for removing dead skin. However, I would warn users to take it slowly when using the product – if you take off too much skin, your feet will be tender for days! When used gently, this electronic device removes all the rough skin to leave toes feeling silky soft. And, it’s small enough to pack into your hand luggage if you’re off on holidays.

 

Step 2: File.

 

Choose any nail file that you like and use it to shape your toenails. Always file in one direction to avoid damaging the nail.

 

Step 3: Paint.

 

 

Kiss “Diamond Hard Nail Strengthener” (€5.99) – Available Here.

I always apply a nail strengthener to my nails before polishing them, to keep them in good condition and to help avoid staining. This one from Kiss is great value and keeps nails from chipping or breaking.

CND “One Week Vinylux Polish” (€11.95) – Available Here.

This polish does exactly what it says on the packaging and if applied using the corresponding top coat, it won’t chip for at least 7 days. I have very weak nails and this is one of the very few polishes on the market that stays put on them for more than five minutes. There are cheaper options on the market but in my opinion, the “Vinylux” nail polish is worth an extra few euro – my favourite shade is “Cake Pop”.

Wet n Wild “1 Step Wonder Gel” (€2.99) – Available in Pharmacies Nationwide.

If the CND “Vinylux Polish” is out of your budget, then this option from Wet n Wild is almost as good. It doesn’t last an entire 7 days on my finger nails without chipping, but it lasts for ages on my toes. The polish is only €2.99 which is an absolute bargain and the shade range is great so next time you’re in Penneys or a pharmacy that stocks Wet N Wild, I suggest that you pick up a few!

 

Step 4: Moisturise and Apply Cuticle Oil

 

 

Ziaja “Foot Cream” (€3.99) – Available Here.
I haven’t written about the brand in ages but long time followers of Rouge Writing Hood will know that I LOVE Ziaja body care products. Their body lotions and balms are so affordable and they achieve great results – as good as any luxury brand that I’ve tried. At only €3.99, their “Foot Cream” is one of my favourite products. I first tried this when I was away for the weekend in Warsaw (Ziaja is a Polish brand) and my feet were killing me after a weekend of stomping around nightclubs in high heels. The cream is instantly soothing and really helps to repair cracked, damaged skin. I now apply it every second night before I go to bed.

 

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CND “Solar Oil” (€4.95) – Available Here.

“Solar Oil” by CND is the only cuticle oil that I’ve tried and found effective. It’s formulated specifically to penetrate beneath shellac and gel polish so it really works to moisture the nails and keep them in healthy condition. The oil is filled with vitamin E which promotes nail growth and leaves nails stronger. This formula should be applied nightly before bed and a little goes a long way.

There you have it – fours steps to achieving silky soft feet from the comfort of your own home. If you can think of any products that you would recommend – let us know in the comment section..

Rouge x

 

 

Ziaja – “Goat’s Milk” Hair Care Range.

“Red hair, Sir, in my opinion, is dangerous” – P.G Wodehose.

 

Anyone who knows me personally, will also know that my hair is my favourite asset. I would choose my red gruaige over a bikini body any day. Which is just as well, considering that I haven’t darkened the door of a gym in approximately 3 years!

Although it seems that spring has finally sprung, many of you are still suffering from winter hair. Winter can be really harsh on hair due to constant changes in temperature which leaves it brittle and frizzy – an absolute nightmare! As a result, I’ve been getting loads of questions about my hair routine and the remedies that I recommend for stressed, dried out hair.

If you follow me on Snapchat (username: rougewriting), you will already know that I am a huge fan of Ziaja, an affordable Polish brand. So, when I heard that they were releasing a “Goat’s Milk” range for stressed out hair, I knew that I would fall deeply, madly in love. As a country girl, I already believe in the beauty benefits of goats’ milk, so I was really intrigued to see how it could be used to strengthen and revive hair. Subsequently, the Ziaja “Goat’s Milk” conditioner and hair mask have become staples in my hair care routine.

 

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Ziaja “Goat’s Milk Strengthening Hair Conditioner” (€2.99/200ml):

Firstly, check out that price point! €2.99? Say, what? That’s cheaper than most supermarket brand conditioners. This conditioner is gorgeous. And, don’t worry – it smells nothing like goats’ milk. The formula is enriched with keratin, a really important ingredient for improving the elasticity of hair. This means that after a few uses, you should notice that your hair has become less brittle and more flexible. I found that the conditioner had almost instantaneous effects, hydrating my hair and improving shine.

I’ve been using this conditioner for over two months now, and I won’t be turning back. I use a small amount (€2 coin sized) and massage it through the length of my hair after every wash. I then leave it to settle for a few minutes before rinsing thoroughly. I tend to avoid applying conditioner to the roots of my hair unless my scalp is feeling particularly sensitive or dehydrated.

Ziaja “Goat’s Milk Strengthening Hair Mask” (€3.99/200ml):

Again, at €3.99, this product is a steal. The mask is a rescue remedy for heat damaged hair because it’s seriously hydrating. A little goes a long way, and you only really need to use this once every week or fortnight to see results. I find that it leaves my hair softer, and less prone to outbreaks of frizz. Plus, the vitamins in the goats’ milk formula add shine and vitality to hair.

All Ziaja products are available here. Overall, I can’t get enough of this range. I’m looking forward to trying the “Goat’s Milk Body Lotion” which was a winner at the 2006 Image Beauty Awards. Have you tried it? Let us know in the comments. And, if you recommend any other products from Ziaja, I would love to hear from you!

Rouge x

Ziaja ‘Cocoa Butter’ Range – My Winter Skincare Saviour.

Your skin is so soft, newborn babies are envious.

October is finally here! Welcome back to the pumpkin spice lattes, toffee apples, gorgeous autumnal colours and  of course flaky, weather-sensitive skin. During the summer, when the central heating systems are turned off, we don’t really need a heavy moisturiser and I love to use something nice and light like Cocoa Brown’s ‘Chocolate Whip’. However, now that Mr.Frost has returned, I need something a little more rich to keep my skin in tip-top condition. Let me introduce you to Ziaja’s ‘Cocoa Butter’ range.

First up, I was sent this beautiful ‘Ziaja Cocoa Body Butter’ (RRP €7.99). Filled with vitamin E, cocoa butter and omega 6 & 3, this formula is designed to give you satin smooth skin. It smells gorgeous – reminiscent of chocolate, so best to avoid if you’re on a diet. What I like best about this product is that it absorbs really quickly. I hate sticky moisturisers but this one soaks into skin almost immediately – perfect if you’re in a hurry. I have almost finished the container and will definitely be repurchasing!

I will admit that even though I’m a skincare addict, I never really believed in the benefits of hand cream until just a few weeks ago. Like I said, I cannot stand the sticky texture of moisturisers and I find that hand cream is often the worst culprit – nobody wants to be walking around with greasy palms! However, because I’m studying at the moment and handwriting essay after essay, I recently noticed that the skin around my fingers has become irritated and dry. So off I went in search of this ‘Ziaja Cocoa Butter Hand Cream’ (€2.99) only to discover that I have been missing out for years! After just three days of use, the dry patches on my hands have cleared up completely (results photographed below). Again, the formula is extremely fast absorbing (less than 60 seconds) and the scent is delicious. Ziaja promise that this product will also help strengthen nails over time, which I’m really looking forward to. At that price point, who could resist?

Ziaja products can be purchased online here. I’m very impressed by the quality of their products, for such affordable prices. Have you read my review of their ‘Natural Olive’ shampoo and conditioner?

Let me know if you have tried any of their products – I would love some recommendations.

Rouge x