Daisy Steiner: "I can't just pluck another winter skincare dos and don'ts out of the air!"
Tim Bisley: "Why not?"*
Yes, because this blog is nowhere near enough geeky.
I promised myself a night of pampering after managing to fit in so much exercise the other week. No need to splash the cash though as I had everything I needed at home already.
First, a luxurious hair conditioning treatment. Argan oil is touted as the wonder treatment de jour. Used in Morocco for centuries, it's just catching on in the UK big time.
I got a little 30ml sample from a friend whose family all live in Morrocco. If you went to a salon this treatment could set you back about £15 or possibly more. Home treatments can be dear too. £5 for 50ml. I've seen Home Bargains online do 66 x 100ml for £17.99 so you could go in shares with a friend or stockpile, but I suggest checking your nearby HB shop out, or, if you have a specialist ethnic supermarket near you try there, as they will be a lot cheaper. These shops are also great for other natural beauty treatments like rose water and coconut oil at cheap prices.
All you need to do is apply to your dry hair and scalp.
It's great for multi-tasking this one... you really don't need much to really penetrate your hair so just wear an old tee-shirt, or clip on a towel, it's not going to really drip everywhere once it's on your head. Just don't go leaning back against your sofa or anything.
You need to leave the oil on for a minimum of 20mins, but I got on with an hour's worth of editing work.
...and yes, you can apply argan oil to your scalp if you have a dry scalp. It's pretty effective at combatting dandruff.
If you can't get hold of argan oil though, you can try olive oil, just on the ends, or even apply your usual conditioner, wrap your wet hair in a towel and stick a bag over the top to gently heat your hair and get more of the conditioner into it.
With 20 minutes to go, I applied my Home Bargains 25p chocolate mask. You don't need to use shop-bought masks though. Porridge oats in water can make a good exfoliating mask, or mashed banana or avocado for softness. As a teen, I used to use a paste made of caster sugar and water, but you have to be careful not to scrub off while it's still very grainy as it can be too harsh if you're not careful.
Mask, applied, pull a duck face. I mean muck face.
Then, you've got to get rid of it. Remove the mask with damp cotton wool or just splash it off with warm water. Then wash the gunk off your hair. Really wash it well. Use a second dollop of shampoo if needed. I chose to run a bath to do this - some purists will argue this is bad and wrong and a bit mucky, but all that argan oil goes in the water to soften your skin after it has been rinsed off your hair. Just remember to use clean water to rinse your hair in, or the oil will just stick back on and it will look like you haven't washed it at all.
I finished my pamper-evening with a hand and nail treatment of slightly warmed olive oil (just the cheap stuff), rubbing it into the cuticles. When rinsed off and dried, I used some Home Bargains emery board (79p) to shape and Aldi Lacura clear nail varnish (£1.99) - this is an attempt to save my nails ahead of my wedding, because they are flakier than the cast of TOWIE.
Sadly, I haven't earned my stripes too do this kind of thing again for a while... despite a park run of 31.11 on Saturday and a 4 mile walk on Sunday. But I have my gym induction tonight, so let's see how things go.
Oh, and there are no 'after' pictures. I am still ugly. But softer.
*I love Spaced.