When you wish upon a jar…

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As you can see from the picture, today’s title is not my pun either! Many of you might have, as I did, originally discovered Soap And Glory through their amusingly named lipgloss, Sexy Motherpucker. Now, I’m not a fan of having sticky lips, as I hate it when the slightest gust of wind attaches my hair to my mouth, so my tube was rapidly consigned to the bottom of my vanity case. Since that initial encounter, however, they have created an extensive line of retro-styled products with funny, punny names.

I bought my pot of Wish Upon A Jar several months ago, but it languished on the shelf, waiting for me to clear space in my diary so that I could follow the instructions that I must apply it morning and night, after cleaning my face, for 21 consecutive days. After our latest production, my skin was feeling really ropey so, once I’d recovered from the post-show exhaustion, I decided to give it a go. (Admittedly, this was actually a month post-show, due to the inevitable winter lurgy having prolonged the tiredness.) Being in my early 30s, and prone to raising my eyebrows and smiling a lot, I have started to develop some small lines on my forehead, between my eyebrows (ok, I sometimes frown, in amongst all the smiling) and at the corners of my eyes. The box has 4 claims: boosts moisture levels, smooths fine lines and wrinkles, brightens tired skin and hides flaws. I don’t really know what they class as a “flaw”, and suspect that this means that I don’t have any (not, unfortunately, to say that my skin is flawless, but I suspect that things like open pores don’t count as they have other products that address these).

Now… I will admit that I was not quite as strict as demanded by the instructions, but I was far more diligent than I usually am about my skincare and only missed a couple of days (and continued for an extra few days at the end, just in case). This was only just short of miraculous, and is testament to how much I enjoyed using it. Upon opening the box, I was greeted with a shiny orb, which I found enticing to start with; I am a complete victim of the “Ooh, shiny!” phenomenon. Once I had twisted apart the hemispheres and removed the plastic lid, the pale pink contents were revealed, looking ever so much like the unguents that my grandmother had applied to her face religiously. It didn’t, however, smell of the slightly flowery perfume that I might have expected of such a retro product, but actually of strawberry-flavoured white chocolate. This made me far more likely to use it, and also to recommend it to my Mum!

My routine while using it was to either wash my face with S&G’s The Greatest Scrub Of All in the shower, or to use their Off Your Face wipes (I told you my skin care regime is a bit lax!), then to apply to my face, neck and the backs of my hands once they were dry. Within 3 days, the dry patches on my cheeks, which I suspect were from a combination of November weather and the fact that I had been doing a quick make-up change twice a day for a week, had disappeared completely and my skin had started to feel moist and plump. Within a week, there was a visible reduction in my fine lines and, by the end of the 3 week period, the lines on my forehead had more-or-less disappeared. By this, I mean that if I frown for a prolonged period they do reappear, but they are no longer visible unless this is the case.

So, to conclude – it did indeed boost my skin’s moisture levels, smooth my lines and brighten my extremely tired skin; I felt positively glowy while using it. I loved it, and have been recommending it to friends and family!

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The (New) Joy of Fleece

Well, actually, the joy of new fleece, but the title was too good to waste. This isn’t technically a review; more a little observation.

I only asked for two specific things for Christmas and was fortunate enough to get both of them. The one pertinent to this post was a pair of brushed cotton pyjamas – I love snuggling up in a pair of PJs on a chilly winter night and honestly don’t see the attraction of the now-ubiquitous onesie, as it is far too reminiscent of a babygro to ever feel comfortable wearing one. There is also something comfortingly old-fashioned about brushed cotton; I also have a great fondness for Victorian style nighties (my favourite is red, and reminds me of The Railway Children) but pyjamas are far more practical, as well as being better for slobbing around in on lazy mornings. My lovely Mum got me a pair, but sadly underestimated my current proportions, so is in the process of returning them for me. In the interim, she has lent me a brand new pair of PJs that she received for Christmas last year, as she isn’t really a PJ person.

Mmmm, lovely, fluffy new pyjamas. They aren’t flannelette (else I would have stolen them outright, rather than borrowing them), but have a long-sleeved, ribbed cotton jersey top and blissfully, sinfully fleecy bottoms. New fleece is so wonderfully soft and snuggly; I think it’s one of the easiest fabrics to forget that you’re wearing, until you get too hot. The heat factor is the reason that I prefer flannelette in the long run, but… mmmmm. It’s rather like wearing a hug.

A remembrance

This is not the post I thought I’d be writing today. I had intended to review a face cream, to wax lyrical about the difference it has made to my skin and to post a picture of its shiny pot. At about midday, however, face cream became an irrelevance and the furthest thing from my mind. The world changed, and was made poorer for the news that was brought.

One of the nicest men I’ve ever had the honour to know died yesterday, at the tragically early age of 34. At times like these, platitudes are often rolled out, such as “only the good die young”, and “it’s always the nice ones”. In this case it really was true. I don’t think I ever heard Leon say a bad word against anybody and certainly never heard one said against him – he was one of those people whose gift it is to be liked by everybody. He was gentle and patient and kind; in our shared hobby he often made time for those newer to it than himself, to make sure that they were at ease and knew what was going on. He was funny; I’ve laughed with him many times and, even if people were laughing at him rather than with him, he’d join in and not be cross or defensive. He was an excellent roleplayer and fantastic schemer – being on the same side as him was a pleasure, but being his enemy was a lot of fun as well, especially when you knew that as soon as you were out of character, you’d be back to being friends who could share a drink and a cigarette. He was fun to go clubbing with, and stay up late talking utter rubbish to. He had lovely hair, and impressively, deceptively broad shoulders – the physical elements of a person should be remembered too. I remember dressing the boys to go clubbing and having to let him wear what he’d turned up in, because nothing we tried to put him in would fit.

He will be very much missed by so very many people whose lives he touched and will live on in their hearts and memories; he was a remarkable man. Leon, I’m raising a glass to you tonight. Sleep well, my friend.

What’s this all about, then?

Well, hello there! How nice to meet you. I’m Vic, and this blog is my new venture for 2013.

A little bit about me to start us off: I love playing dress-up, be it dressing as a flapper for my friend’s hen do, getting my Victoriana on for a White Mischief night, or wearing something Fabulously Fifties to jive the night away at the Ace CafĂ©. Last year I took over as wardrobe mistress for JLOS; my first show was The Gondoliers, set in the 50s and, while it was extremely hard work, it was great fun and I can’t wait to do it all over again this year!

I’m inherently attracted to anything with a vintage/retro look, so you can expect most of my reviews to be based around this, but I’ll also be making posts on exercise gear, food, film… whatever flits through my head that I think you’ll be interested in.

Looking forward to getting to know you!