East London spa experience [review]

 

It’s summer in the city and a good opportunity to get out and discover more of our local neighbourhood. We were understandably excited to be invited to an east London spa experience, specifically, to the lovely Spa Experience Bethnal Green.

Our booking fell during the middle of the week, and at exactly the right time – the weather had been hot, work stressful and we were definitely in need of a little ‘me’ (or rather, ‘us’) time.

Cooper and I met at Bethnal Green tube station and wandered a few minutes up the road to the York Hall Leisure Centre which is a huge health, fitness and wellness oasis set admits the bustle of the big city.

You’d never expect for there to be a tranquil spa and baths in here, but happily, there is!

This east London spa experience offers members and guests not only a host of treatments for men and women, but extraordinary thermal bath therapies too, including Hammam, sauna, plunge pool, monsoon showers, ice fountain, hot rooms (Turkish baths) and hydrotherapy pool.

The substantial space means there’s something for all needs (relaxation, pain, detoxification, blood flow and respiration) – you’ll even find a chill-out space with fresh fruit and day beds.

Two of our very favourite skincare brands are put to good use at Spa Experience Bethnal Green – Elemis and Murad.

You can select from a wide range of repair and rejuvenation treatments here, and we had the chance to each try out one of the facials on offer.

Cooper recommends the Elemis high performance skin energiser facial, which makes use of the Elemis lime blossom range that works to balance and repair the skin.

This particular facial is ideal for men. The ingredients used maximise cell regeneration and boost circulation. You even get a scalp massage for deep relaxation [insert smiley face here].

I have sensitive skin so am often a bit apprehensive regarding trying new products. I have used and trust Elemis though, and chose to go for the skin sensitive soother which is perfect for changeable weather conditions (hello, London!), helps to reduce redness, restore texture and moisture levels.

I also enjoyed (fell asleep during) the relaxing scalp massage [insert another smiley face here].

Our expert therapists were Kemelia and Tara, and they shared with us that the secret to beautiful skin is to commit to a series of sessions that will tackle conditions that trouble you, like dry or red skin, acne and other issues brought on my exposure to extreme environments and stress.

This east London spa experience reminded us both of the importance of taking good care of the body, mind and spirit.

As busy working professionals we – like you, I’m sure – are put under a lot of pressure every day. Sometimes you don’t even realise how the body and skin is impacted.

If you’re over our way in east London, take time out to escape to Spa Experience Bethnal Green and talk to the team about the benefits they can add to your lifestyle.

Find out more: Spa Experience Bethnal Green

 

Do blondes have more fun? [review]

 

I had been growing my blonde locks for longer than I’d cared to realise.

As it turns out, the choice to chop it all off – for the first time in ten years – ended up an emotional one, and something I comically (for the most part) write about in the August 2017 issue of Get it Magazine (published soon).

My hair was happy to have a fresh cut and I’m liking it. The act of cutting it all off symbolised a fresh start. They’re often bittersweet, right?

Since I went back to my blonde bob of old though I’ve noticed this seems to be the summer trend, so I’ve decided to own it.

Best of blonde: luxe to less tried and tested

As it’s short, it’s imperative my hair looks blonde, fresh and fun. After all, why else go short and sweet?

These two brands got wind of my situation and wanted me to experience life as it should be for a brave blonde.

If you too are in the market for shampoo, conditioner and treatments for blonde hair, read on…

Joico

Joico’s new Blonde Life range cares for blonde hair which can tend towards feeling and looking dry and damaged in not too much time at all. These products also work to banish brassy tones, restore moisture and add shine – yummy!

The Brightening Masque is also part of the set – it’s a five minute moisture hit which revives blonde ends that are dehydrated and dry (sound familiar?).

Loved this range from the second I started using it. The promise is that hair is kept bright, smooth and shiny, as well as on-tone for up to eight weeks. Importantly, after using it my hair is easy to style and a nice colour. It’s obvious this is a quality range and I would absolutely buy it again.

Interestingly there’s no purple tones in these products – they are glossy and gold, yet they totally do the trick and maintain my colour.

– Blonde Life brightening shampoo 300ml, £15.50
– Blonde life brightening conditioner 300ml, £16.50
– Blonde life brightening masque 135ml, £17.45

More: joico-blondelife.com

Here’s my friend Jackie, and I, out and about; I could say blondes have more fun (especially after I just washed and styled my hair with these goodies), but I think she had a nice time at this masquerade party too!

 

Phil Smith

It’s difficult to tell what you’re going to get with products for blonde hair, and I can’t definitively say that all ‘cheaper’ brands aren’t as good as some of the more expensive brands. I’ve had experiences with products from all across the brand spectrum that have dried my hair out and left it feeling lifeless – literally. Not great!

This affordable range that’s exclusively available from Sainsbury’s however, has pleasantly surprised me.

Actually, I was using and loving the products before I even checked the price and expected it to be much higher.

Work ready…

The shampoo smells lovely, the treatment is violet-toned which is totally necessary for my hair which can tend towards gold; the products are vegan friendly too.

This is a lovely, gentle range of products that feel nice on the hair, offer brightness and softness and at a price that’s inexpensive for what you get.

Very happy to keep these products in my cupboard and on my shopping list.

– Bombshell blonde radiance shampoo 350ml, £3.50, Sainsbury’s
– Bombshell blonde radiance conditioner 250ml, £3.50, Sainsbury’s
– Bombshell blonde radiance intensive treatment 150ml, £3.50, Sainsbury’s

More: philsmithhair.com

So, do blondes have more fun? Yes, now I definitely am!

5 Packing Tips For Travelling Fashionistas

Packing tips for travelling fashionistas

Even the best laid travel plans can not 100 per cent predict the weather. So what’s a travelling fashionista to do when faced with unpredictable climate and strict luggage limits? Pack well.

Katrina Barry, very frequent traveller and Managing Director of travel icon Contiki, shares her top tips with TLL for a fashionable and functional packing job.

5 Packing Tips For Travelling Fashionistas

  1. Go big on accessories, light on main items: Jeans, tops, skirts and dresses all take up valuable space in your shopping bag, I mean suitcase. Pick only a few durable pieces (avoid patterns as you’ll only want to wear them once or twice) that can be mixed and matched then teamed with space-saving accessories such as scarves and statement necklaces. You’ll come across looking like you never wear the same thing twice!
  2. Shoes. Be ruthless: While this is an area I struggle with myself, I cannot stress enough how important it is to only take the necessities. To clarify, necessities are a nice pair of flats or sandals (replace these with boots if going into colder climates), a good pair of walking shoes and some dress shoes for special nights. Anything additional is overdoing it and will likely go unworn while taking up precious space.
  3. Easy pack hat: Because there is nothing stylish about sunburn, and besides, a cute fedora or straw sun hat can really add that je ne sais quoi to an outfit. But don’t just stash any old bendable brim in your bag. There are plenty of brands that are creating stylish hats that can be rolled, folded or balled up then bounce back into shape. One of these is definitely worth investing in.
  4. Pack items you wouldn’t mind ditching: You may not be planning to shop on your trip, but when faced with those items you just could not find at home, many of us crumble. I often pack items that I don’t mind wearing, but also wouldn’t mind ditching so I can follow a one-in, one-out rule when space becomes an issue. If travelling with a group, ask your Trip Manager where you can donate any unwanted items, or find out from the concierge at your hotel.
  5. You have carry-on allowance. Use it: Sure, you may not want to be weighed down in your stop overs by carrying extra items, but a small backpack or overnight bag with a few extra wardrobe options can really come in handy. Bonus tip: pack your favourite and most functional travel wear in your carry on, just in case your luggage arrives at your destination after you!

Got a tip to add? Drop us a line in the comments below…