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Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Sort your smile for Santa....

I don't know how I've done it but I've recently lost/mislaid my electric toothbrush. Being forced to return to a manual is a bit like my automobile history. Having spent 5 years driving a Skoda Felicia, at the age of 22 I graduated to a plush Honda Civic. After just a year of feather-light power steering and shock, horror, a CD player, I was forced to share my boyfriend's car...a Skoda Felicia. Don't get me wrong, I have a real soft spot for Skodas and manual toothbrushes alike, but nothing feels as slick, as clean or as powerful as an electric toothbrush, or Honda Civic, if you will.

For healthy, pearly-white gnashers, Oral-B ambassador and TV dentist, Dr James Russell suggests, “First, make sure you at least brush twice a day for two minutes. Sounds obvious but, on average, we only brush for 37 seconds! Make life easier by using the Oral-B PC Triumph 5000 - with its wireless SmartGuide timer and mouth map you can be sure you’re brushing the right places for the right amount of time. If you've still got the energy then floss too - it's the only way to get those hard to reach bits.’’ Sx

A bit of Christmas cheer

In my line of work, I accumulate a lot, A LOT of beauty samples. From shampoos and conditioners, to lipsticks and mascaras, my flat is filled with products. And while I do test and keep a lot (I am very lucky!) I simply don't have the room to hoard absolutely everything. I decided to put together a beauty sale for my close friends and family so that they could pick up early Christmas presents, and I could get rid of the boxes of beauty loot and most importantly, make some money for charity.

After hours of rummaging, I'm pleased to say we've made £203 for charity. Thank you to Natalie, who helped me put on a spread for the occasion, and to Mum, Hayley, Cheryl, Chinea, Syd and Andrea for being so generous and obsessive about beauty. Thanks also to the staff of Wilkinsons for taking time out to rummage in the staff room. I've chosen to donate the money to Cancer Research, a very worthy and personal choice.

I just want to take this opportunity to thank the PRs, who have not only been kind enough to send all these samples and helped raise such a lot of money for charity, but for their ongoing, unwavering support. Your help and assistance is greatly appreciated and I look forward to working with you all in 2011 Sx

Friday, 17 December 2010

Try a Trend...Twinkle Eyes

I might sound like a 5 year old but there's nothing I love more than a bit of glitter. Even E likens me to a magpie, as he sees me running in the direction of glittery heels or sequinned skirts. Needless to say, no Maylor Christmas is complete without the obligatory statement eye.

Step 1. First I applied a wash of deep burgundy shadow to match the glitter. I used Mac Eye Shadow in Shadowy Lady, £11 (

Step 2. After messing about with glue over the years, I've found the easiest method to apply glitter is to use Barry M Glitter Lashes, £4.99 ( The pen applicator dispenses a glue and sparkle mix, which is easy to dip into your own glitter.

Step 3. Place a tissue over the cheek, beneath the eye to save your base. Then gradually begin to apply Mac Glitter in Blackened Red over the eye, winging out towards the hairline. I took the colour under the lower lash line for extra impact.

Step 4. Finish with lashings of black mascara. Sx

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Pooch Pampering

I don't like to exclude ANYONE from the world of beauty so when I heard about a new range of canine tress treats from John Paul Pet, created by hair guru Paul Mitchell, I knew a certain scruffy-looking Shih-Tzu/Bichon Frise cross would be interested.
Ralph before
Here, his owner and BFF, Andrea, reviews the products.... 
Ralph before
"My dog is beyond adorable and I wouldn't swap him for anything (despite his persistant fear of people, bikes, plastic bags, bushes, egg cups), however, I continually find myself having problems with his fur. After a bad experience at the groomers, we have been forced to groom him ourselves. When Stephanie brought home this fabulous dog range, I thought our doggy grooming prayers had been answered!

The packaging looks really premium for a dog range. My particular favourites were the John Paul Pet Tea Tree Treatment Shampoo, £8.75, and the Conditioning Spray, £8.75. Usually left to use Johnson's baby, I find this and other shampoos don't lather well, however, this one was right on the money foam-wise and had a great scent to boot. 

The conditioning spray, which I was initially sceptical about, was amazing. I didn't have to use very much before combing through and I have really noticed a difference in his fur. Prone to tangling, it has been 4 days and not one knot has begun to develop, so I am one happy owner.

The Full Body & Paw Bath Wipes, £6.80, weren't quite as impressive. After a morning walk, I used the wipes to remove the mud from his paws. They seemed quite dry and while they did make a little difference, I still wouldn't let him go near the cream carpets.

The product I was most intrigued by was the Waterless Foam Shampoo, £8.75. I don't know about most dogs, but baths aren't high up on Ralph's agenda so the idea that he could have a deep cleanse, without the trials and tribulations of a bath really appealed. A few pumps for each paw were enough to massage in. The instructions say to repeatedly comb through until the fur is dry, which gets quite tiresome but after around 30 mins of sporadic brushing, the dirt was gone and his fur soft. I would definitely buy the Shampoo and Conditioning Spray again and again."

Ralph after
The Paw Scores...
Tea Tree Treatment Shampoo 5/5
The Conditioning Spray 5/5
Full Body & Paw Bath Wipes 2/5
Waterless Foam Shampoo 4/5

Ralph after

The range is now available from The Pet Spa, Harrods but can be found online at Sx

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

A Tip from the Top!

According to Jeff Pink, founder of Orly and creator the the French Manicure, rough, bumpy nails won't reflect the light and end up looking dull and unhealthy.

'For a quick DIY ridge filler, mix a little talcum powder with topcoat,' he says. I'm a fan of Orly's Super High Shine Top Coat, £8.95 ( Sx

Maybe it's Maybelline... it really was Maybelline at last night's festive soiree at Soho House. I haven't seen an event so squished in a long time, which is a real testament to the brand and its pro PRs. New launches decorated the room - FYI, the new 24HR Super Stay LipColors are to-die-for.
George Lamb
Henry Holland was DJ-ing and played some choooooons (Whitney Houston 'Queen of the Night' has to be one of my favourite songs of all time, thanks Henry). Our 'Secret Santa' was a very suave-looking George Lamb. We had a sneaky chat with him and during our brief encounter I learned two things. He swears like a sailor (he dropped the F-bomb 3 times, gasp!) and his hair colouring is totally natural.

Henry Holland

This was a great week for canape watch. From mini hamburgers and fish & chips, to chicken goujons and tuna nicoise, it really was the kind of food you want and need at a cocktail-fuelled bash. 10/10!

Andrea and I both enjoyed a lovely manicure. The manicurists did a sterling job in the cramped conditions of a packed-out Soho House. I opted for Taupe Couture, £4.19 from the new Nudes collection launching in March, a great match for Chanel's sell-out Particuliere. Andrea chose the rather more festive Express Finish in Red Comet.

Andrea's festive shimmering red shade
 Next, we spotted the Maybelline Pick'n'Mix. As excited as I was about the seemingly endless supply of Cola Bottles, I was even more thrilled to find dispensers filled with all manner of Maybelline goodies. I'm looking forward to rocking the Mono Eyeshadow in Couture Blue, Color Sensational Cream Gloss in Nude Pearl and Forever Strong PRO Polish in Orange Couture over the festive season.

The Maybelline Make-up Pick 'n' Mix
It really was a fabulous evening and a reminder of the brand's cult, hip status. Stay tuned for reviews of the new products Best Tressers. Sx
Chanel Particuliere eat your heart out!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Oops a Daisy!

I almost had a heart attack when I saw these pictures of Daisy Lowe sporting a new 'do. Gone were the eye-skimming bangs and the enviably lengthy, casually straight tresses in favour of a 20s bob. Perhaps the coat didn't help but she looks remarkably like Gavin & Stacey's Nessa. Luckily for Daisy (and us) it was a wig. Phew.

Check out her look here -

What do you think Best Tressers? Is the wig a hit or a miss? Vote in the Tress Factor poll! Sx

Monday, 13 December 2010

Try a Trend...Shiny, Happy Peepers

Want a modern take on the smoky eye? A slick of shine will add intrigue to smouldering shadow.  
To get the look, apply your favourite black eyeshadow (the darker the better) across the lid. I used a clear lipgloss to dab across the eyes but you can use Vaseline for a more subtle shine. Finish with a couple of coats of black mascara. Sx

Friday, 10 December 2010

Has Cheryl Cole gone mad?

After seeing Cheryl arriving for the X Factor final rehearsals in what can only be described as festive childrenswear, I can only assume that she's lost her style mojo. She seems to have developed a penchant for gaudy earrings, and her makeup is too heavy for daytime. What do you think Best Tressers?

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Try a Trend...Ice Queen

Nothing says Winter like a bit of silver sparkle. We used the myface Box of Bling to achieve the look. The handy set worth £25 contains full size products, including the Eye Pencil in Black, Lil' Bling Nail Polish and One Hit Wonder Gloss, both in Diamonds & Pearls. Best of all, it's currently free/gratis/comp at Boots when you spend £15 on myface cosmetics. Done and done!

To get this look I swept L'oreal Paris Color Appeal Mono Eyeshadow in Real Silver, £6.19 ( across the lid and out towards the hairline. Next, line the eyes with myface Eye Pencil in Black to add definition. Add a flush of pink with No7 Natural Blush Cheek Colour in Candy Pink, £9 (Boots) to the apples of the cheeks. Finally finish with a slick of myface One Hit Wonder Gloss in Diamonds & Pearls. Nice, Ice Baby! Sx

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 18

£50 & UNDER
Get this TGTU (too gorgeous to use) Estee Lauder Makeup Artist Professional Makeup Artist Collection 2010 ( for a ridiculously cheap £49 when you buy any Estee Lauder fragrance ("ohhhhhh what a chore," I hear you cry!). The set, which should set you back a staggering £315, includes the following....ahem...

*eyeshadow palette with 18 New Pure Color Eyeshadow shades
*deluxe face palette compact with 3 Signature Blushes and a Bronze Goddess Bronzer
*4 Pure Colour Long Lasting Lipsticks
*Pure Colour Gloss
*3 Artist's Eye Pencils
*Gentle eye makeup remover
*Makeup brush set
*Metallic makeup pouch and mirror


Revlon Fire & Ice is back!

The original Fire & Ice campaign, starring Dorian Leigh
Launched in 1952, the original Revlon 'Fire & Ice' campaign saw the first supermodel, Dorian Leigh, striking an iconic pose. The advert even came with a quiz to see if the reader was made for the range.
Revlon All Fired Up Nail Enamel, £6.29
For 2010, the cult lip and nail colours (exclusive to Boots) have been revived from the archives - the products remain the same but the campaign has been given a new lease of life by Jessica Biel, shot by Mario Testino.
Revlon Fire & Ice Lipstick, £7.29
I swear by Revlon lipsticks and polishes - I can't wait to try these classic colours together. Don't you know matching your nails and lips is the look du jour? Sx 
Jessica Biel stars in the new campaign

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 17

£15 & UNDER
I think I've died and gone to manicure heaven. This Deborah Lippmann Happy Birthday nail polish, £14, (exclusive to House of Fraser) is the talon equivalent of twinkling fairy lights - all sparkly and smile-inducing. House of Fraser has already had to replenish stock once so if you want to get your mitts on it, head in store now! Sx

New Professional-At-Home Haircare Line

I was first introduced to Scott Cornwall's 'Bring the Salon Home' range a few months ago. The range tackles almost every sort of hair dilemma - the sorts of dilemmas that, until now, you would have had to run to the salon (in a balaclava) to fix. Colouring your hair at home? Use the B4 U Colour to prep the hair first. Sick of your frizzy or curly hair? Str8 Forward permanently straightens locks at a snip of the price of 'Brazilian Blowdry' treatments. The range even includes a Foil Effects Cap so you can get salon-esque highlights or lowlights at home.
Despite this, if I'm being totally (in fact, brutally) honest, I wasn't expecting much from the range. The packaging is a little flimsy and tacky. Plus I've got a 'thing' about text speak in products. Moreover, at under £12 the price point for the range is just too low to get the kind of results the brand promises...or so I thought...last week I tried Colour B4 Regular, £9.99 (Boots) a treatment that claims to strip the hair of aritificial colour, and I'm seriously indebted to the brand. As you Best Tressers know, I am forever testing new hair colourants. My poor hair is subjected to an onslaught of chemicals, not to mention so many layers of colour I can't remember what my natural hue looks like.

Without getting too bogged down in the science, it works by shrinking the colour molecules within the hair so that they can be easily rinsed out. It's worth noting though that the Colour B4 will not strip bleached colour. The process is quite lengthy (I was in the bathroom for about an hour) but simple to follow. It was incredibly satisfying to see the colour wash out of my hair. Once dried, my hair did look lighter, with a lovely warm, reddy tint (the instructions do warn you this can happen and suggest putting a colour over the top). I happen to love the new colour - I've even had a few compliments. I would definitely use this again - I'm almost tempted to have another go soon to see if I can get any more colour out. I expected it would leave my hair feeling dry but actually my hair was shinier than it's been in a long time. I'm yet to try the other products in the range but the words 'don't' 'judge' 'book' and 'cover' spring to mind. Sx

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Oh my god...Alexa gets it wrong!

I'm seriously in shock. Alexa Chung - so stylish with her choppy bob and root stretch colour - has rarely put a loafer-clad foot wrong in the beauty stakes. But, shock horror, her shoulder-skimming hair has been hacked into a boyish, chin-length cut and her softly-softly bleached tips now look incredibly brassy (and if I'm really going to stick the knife in, that's a bad dress, too).

See her look here...

What do you think Best Tressers? Is it a hit or a miss? Vote in the Tress Factor poll now. Sx

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 16

£20 & UNDER
Possibly the cutest Christmas gift bag-ette (err that's a little bag, don't you know?) I've even seen. The products are pretty darn good, too. The set is includes an uber flattering Dual-Ended Lip Gloss, Full Story Lush-Lash Mascara and the amazing GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream (I use this every night and I'm pleased to report I never wake up to puffy eyes), the set saves you £12.45! Another reason to love Origins. Sx

What's Up, Curl Friend?

I am becoming increasingly impressed with Umberto Giannini haircare. I've always loved the scents but the non-greasy, frizz-fighting serums and uber nourishing conditioners show there's more than just great fragrance to the brand. Last night I tried the Curl Friends range for the first time. I have to confess, I was dubious. Having naturally wavy hair, I've grown up sporadically investing in curl-specific products. There's a reason why it's always been so sporadic...the trade-off for defined curls is crispy, straw-like texture. Bad curl products! Bad!

Thankfully, I had nothing to worry about it with U.G. The Silky Curls Intensive Mask, £4.89 (Boots) has a lovely, gloopy consistency (and FYI, it smells deliciously fresh and airy). After a 3 minute sesh, I could feel how silky and smooth my hair felt. Better yet, my quick post-wash brush was effortless, near knot-less. Hoorah!

The Smoothy Curls Anti-Frizz Serum, £4.89, was a lot thicker than other brands so I was nervous. Despite having wavy, frizz-prone hair, I normally steer clear of serums because I hate that greasy, lank feeling. Again, I was pleasantly surprised. I applied a 20p sized amount to the lengths and ends and let my hair dry naturally. I kept clutching at my roots to see if I could trace any greasiness, but nothing. The shine, too, is worth mentioning. Whenever I leave my hair to dry naturally, rather than straightening it, I do sacrifice on shine. Whether it's the mask or serum (perhaps both) my curls look glossy and healthy.

Finally, I finnished with the Hold Me Curl Hairspray, £4.89, a lovely, lightweight, humidity-proof spritz. 24 hours into the curlathon and my bounce and smoothness is still very much noticeable. Thanks Umberto Giannini - you've rocked my curls Sx

Monday, 6 December 2010

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 15

Even if I hadn't tried this hairdryer (it dries like a dream) or I hadn't first seen its funky pattern (pink leopard print...I die) I would still be astonished that an 1800 watt dryer with an anti-frizz Ceramic-ionic grill and a co-ordinating paddle brush could come in at a truly bargainous £19.99 (exclusive to Argos). Remington's Tribal Collection also extends to a pair of Ceramic and Teflon-coated straightening irons - they come with an animal print clutch, of course. As for the hairdryer, I was going to give this as a gift but I'm so in love with it that I'm keeping it for myself and giving my archaic-but-trusty dryer the heave-ho. Sx

Try a Trend...Glitter Nails

Nothing says festive like sparkling nails. I used the delectable Nails Inc Nail Polish in Park Lane, £20 for set of three glitter polishes ( Using this Nails Inc polish, and I suspect all glitter varnishes, you will need a few coats. This look took three. But boy was it worth it. Sx

TIP...the glitter was a nightmare to take off so use a good nail varnish remover like Orly Extra Strength Nail Polish Remover (

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 14

So Molton Brown's The Three Musketeers Set is pricey at £42 ( but when you consider that the three products should cost you a fiver more separately (okay so it's not that much more) and just how lovely MB stuff actually is, it's a reasonable-ish (maybe?) impressive-looking gift for your man. Including the active cassia hair & body sportswash, moisture-rich aloe & karité ultrabar and active cassia deodorant, it's a definite must-have for metrosexual men on the go. I haven't seen the set in person but having gotten a whiff of a similar men's gift set from Molton Brown last year, I can tell you the fragrances are divine - this set smells of warming cassia bark, lemon and rosemary essential oils. Sx

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 13

I think my nose, or rather my sense of smell, is somewhat of an anomaly. Because, unlike most journos, most PRS and actually most women, I've never been a fan of the original Chloe fragrance [cue gasps]. The new Love Chloe addition, however, is right up my scent street, with its powdery, neroli-based air. The Love Chloe Christmas Gift Set, £53 (0800 083 6312) contains the 50ml Eau de Parfum and 100ml Body Lotion. On the face of it, perfume gift collections seem quite pricey but by layering the corresponding lotion and fragrance, your scent will go a lot further! Sx

Friday, 3 December 2010

Best Tressed Christmas Gift Guide 12

Beauty Collective, £18
Scarlett & Crimson is the beauty brainchild of make-up maestros, Ruby Hammer and Millie Kendall. The Beauty Collective set (above) boasts an array of eye, lip and cheek colours - or to be precise, 25 shadows, 15 glosses, 3 blushers, 3 bronzers, 2 eye pencils and a blusher brush.

For nail buffs, the Totally Nailed set contains 3 very wearable shades, nail files, cuticle pusher, tweezers, toe separators and nail art. It seems to be aimed at younger girls but actually, this is quite a grown up nail set - just note, cuticle pushers should be used with care. Sx
Totally Nailed £12

Party. Party. Party

Last night, I was kindly invited by Remington to a party thrown by ITV at the Movies to celebrate the release of the new film, 'Burlesque'. The hair-styling gurus were sponsoring the event at the super-plush Mayfair hotel and boy, what a parade of 'celebrities' it was.
Me and some random, almost-naked blokes
The party was hosted by semi-WAG, Lizzie Cundy, who perfomed her MC duties with aplomb as she introduced the acts, which included burlesque show (we missed the performance as we were STILL at the bar), some random female singer and finally X Factor finalist, John Adeleye. Managed to get a sneaky conversation with John - he's rooting for Rebecca to win and says the judges' bickering is all for the cameras. This week on canape watch we had mini quiches (I hate quiche), amazing little sausages with a mashed potato filling, and vegetable spring rolls. The gin and vodka based cocktails were tasty...a little too tasty as 3 hours in the bar ran out of booze! Some poor bloke had to leg it to Sainsbury's to restock. 
Lou and me with Gavin
Other famous faces included Sam Fox (she really is tiny), Elen Rives (she really is thin) and Joe Calzaghe (he really is tonk). Another spot was Aaron from S Club Juniors. Now I know what you must be thinking - how would I spot a bloke who, in his celebrity-prime, was just a boy? Well I wanted to enter the CBBC competition to be in S Club Juniors, but sadly, was a few months too old. Needless to say, I kept a very close eye on the band and what could have been my career. That and he's rumoured to be dating Frankie from the Saturdays.
Gavin Henson was very popular with the guests. Lou tells me when we had our picture with him, he said, 'thank you ladies.' What a polite young man! Next spot was Duncan from Blue. Then Lee from Blue. They were walking out when I clocked the time Lee was walking in front of me, I let out a hysterical gasp/scream. Of course, he stopped, probably to check I wasn't having some sort of medical fit. He was nice. Shorter than I expected. God, I still love Blue. Sx