Queens Beauty Lounge “Chocoluscious Valentine’s”

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Last evening, I had the pleasure of being invited to experience some of the February “Chocoluscious Valentine’s” offers at the newly opened Marina branch of Queens Beauty Lounge. Their new branch is easy to reach, just a five minute walk from Marina metro, tucked away in the Marinascape building next to Marina Walk.

The salon had a subtly busy buzz about it – from hair to nails to make-up various staff were busy attending to relaxed-looking clients. Arriving for my appointment tired and straight from work, the Belle Lucce Chocolate Body Mask, which I was treated to, was exactly what the doctor ordered. (Usually this treatment is priced at 250AED but is currently on special offer at only 125AED!)

My therapist escorted me to a room at the back of the salon where I was thoroughly scrubbed front and back, from neck to toe, with an exfoliator and hot cloths. Now like a snake having shed it’s old skin, my baby-soft self was lathered in a chocolate body mask and cocooned in cling film and towels to bake for 20 minute – during which time I drifted into a peaceful sleep thanks to the dim lighting, relaxing background music and eye mask!

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Picture courtesy of Le Parisien Nail Bar, Valencia

Awoken from my slumber, the cling film was removed and replaced with a towel and slippers so  I could shuffle across the hall to the steamy shower room. This however, was an aspect I didn’t particularly enjoy. Although most clients are too engrossed in their own treatments front of house to notice, I was within full view – in my towel, moving from one room to the other and the shower despite being dreamily hot and steamy, the drain on the floor was rusty and completely open – which aside from aesthetic appearances, was a major health and safety hazard – particularly in a slippery environment!

Those points aside, after washing the chocolate mask away my skin felt amazing and was then further complimented by my therapist massaging my whole body with a lathering of moisturiser. The treatment finished with a short foot massage and stretch of my lower limbs which was I thought was a lovely way to finish the experience.

All in all the treatment did exactly as it should – it left me feeling new and shiny yet was relaxing. Given that the salon only had it’s official opening last week I can forgive some its minor glitches aforementioned and I am sure that the Marina Queens Beauty Lounge branch will be every bit as successful as their JLT branch.

For full information about their Valentine’s Offers, visit their website or Facebook at the below links:

http://www.queensbeautylounge.com/

https://www.facebook.com/queensbeautylounge/

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Oil Pulling

What is it? It is a natural way of drawing out toxins from your body and improving your oral health by swirling oil around in your mouth for 20 minutes each day.

I had heard of it from friends and other online health bloggers but had never gotten into it until I recent trip to Bali where I had an abundance of fresh coconut oil at my disposal and I thought why not!?

You don’t have to use coconut oil, you can use any other vegetable oil, like sesame, but I love the taste of coconut oil and it’s also antibacterial so is a really great choice.

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Picture courtesy of lesserevillife.com

What are the benefits or why should you do it?

  • Whiter teeth
  • Stronger gums and teeth
  • Fresher breath
  • Detoxes the body which has been shown to help with hangovers, headaches and skin problems like acne and psoriasis
  • Increases energy by ridding it of any nasty toxins that are zapping us

There are a few key things to oil pulling that you should know before you begin…

  • You must oil pull on an empty stomach, at least 4 hours since your last meal or an hour after liquids
  • You need to swirl the oil in your mouth for 20 minutes – I know this seems like a really long time but if you do it first thing when you wake not only is your stomach empty but you won’t feel the time passing as you are busy hopping in and out of the shower, getting dressed, doing your make-up, etc. (If you’re finding 20 minutes really difficult 10 minutes is better than nothing)
  • Don’t put too much oil in your mouth, the oil will double in size as you swirl it so if it becomes too much just spit some out!
  • When you’re 20 minutes is up, spit into the bin not your sink so as not to clog the drains! (By the way the oil will have turned white – don’t panic, that’s normal)
  • Don’t swallow any of the oil as it is drawing the toxins out of your body so you don’t want to send them back in!
  • You may start to feel worse before you’ll feel better – like with any detox you are getting rid of the bad so you can feel good – persevere. 
  • Finally, give your teeth a quick brush after you spit out the oil to ensure any residue is removed.

So how did I find my first oil pulling experience and did I notice any changes?

For the first few days I felt pretty crappy. My nose had started running, my throat was dry and my head was killing me. But after 3 or 4 days these side affects disappeared and after almost three oil pulling now I really notice a difference in how white my teeth are.

Even Wu-Wu wants to give it a try! 

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DIY Face Masks

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Taking care of our skin is so important and it starts from the inside with our diets, drinking enough water and getting enough sleep. Exercise is also great as it oxygenates the cells. The famous, porcelain skinned model, Erin O’Connor, once swore by running on a treadmill every day as the secret to her enviable complexion!

Day-to-day I don’t wear make-up as I like to let my skin breathe (OK, and I’m also very lazy about it!) but I always wear SPF 50 under my moisturiser and each night I gently wash my face with Voya cleanser and a warm muslin cloth. I love the Voya products, number one because they are natural, produced from seaweed, and two because they are Irish! I find them gentle but effective on my skin. I also regularly dry-brush, aiming for once per week to help with circulation and ridding any toxins from the body.

Facials are a real treat for the skin and as much as I would love to be able to afford spa facials on a regular basis for most of us it’s just not feasible. That being said products or processes used in spa or salon facial treatments can sometimes be harsh on skin and that is why I began making my own all-natural facials at home and re-creating fabulous spa evenings in the comfort of my own apartment! Light some candles or burn some incense, invite the girls over, grab a few bottles of nail polish, some magazines and a DVD and you have the perfect girls night-in!

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The beauty about all of the below options are that the ingredients can be mixed and matched to your preference. They will leave your skin soft, moisturised and visibly brighter and tighter. Apply each mask for 15-20 minutes then rinse with warm water and a cloth to help slough away any dead skin cells.

 

Option 1 – Moisturising – My personal favourite!

1 tbsp Oats

1 tsp Honey

Half a banana

1 tsp Coconut oil (melted)

Optional milk/yoghurt

*Blend all ingredients*

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Option 2 – Brightening

2 tbsps natural yoghurt

Juice from half an orange + some pulp

1 tsp Aloe Vera

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Option 3 – Nourishing 

1/4 cup of olive oil

Juice from half a lemon

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Option 4 – Fresh faced

1 beaten egg

Optional tsp of honey

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Option 5 – Great for dry skin!

Half an avocado

1 tsp honey

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Option 6 – For oily or inflamed skin

1/2 a cucumber (blended)

1 tsp honey

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