Ultimate Pre-Holiday Beauty Checklist

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]There’s something about the pre-holiday preening ritual that I just love. It’s really easy to get very comfortable in your black skinny jeans all winter, get a bit complacent after the first few weeks of the whole ‘new year, new me’ thing in January and basically forget that soon enough it’ll be time to bare almost all again. Over the past year I’ve reviewed a hella beauty treatments, I’ve been to salons and spas across the country and had anti-age cell-renewal skin-firming lotions and potions coming out of my eyeballs…but there are only a select few that make the cut. Places I’d return to, products I’d repurchase and treatments I’m happy to give a genuine honest glowing review about. I’ve compiled the ultimate pre-holiday beauty checklist (because who doesn’t love ticking things off a list?) to feel and look beach-ready for the start of the holiday season.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Tropical Popical nail salon

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]1. The Holiday Mani-Pedi

We all get them, but there’s no place like Tropical Popical to get me in the mood for my holliers.  The manicure table is plastered in tropical images of sandy toes and sunsets, there are holiday postcards from around the world on the wall, you’re served the totally tropical tasting Lilt in coconut shells complete with cocktail umbrellas and they nickname their polish shades stuff like ‘Princess Pink and Baby Green’, yep. The girlos in here can do manicures in their sleep, you name the nail art…they’ve done it. Seriously reasonable prices and a killer sound-track to get you in the holiday vibe too.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Tropical Popical nail salon

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Being honest, the girls know my voice when I ring up to make an appointment at this stage, so it’s not only good for a pre-holiday mani-pedi…but I certainly wouldn’t set (a well-pedicured) foot on a plane without a visit to this South William Street haunt.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]David Gandy wall Tropical Popical nail salon

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Oh and did I mention they’ve recently added an entire wall dedicated to the ride of every week David Gandy? Need I say more? Probably not.

2. The Pre-Getaway Facial

Have you ever left a facial thinking, ‘why have just spent eighty quid for someone to do an elaborate cleanse, tone and moisturise 3 times then stick a mask on while I listen to whales singing?’ or walked out looking worse than you did when you went in? Then I might have the answer for you.

River Medical specialises in all sorts or surgical and non-surgical procedures like jet peels, fillers, IPL laser etc., but what I’m most interested in is the Vit-illume treatment. [dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Vit-illume at River Medical

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Looks a bit hi-tech right? That’s what I love about it. All the staff here are medically trained too! Skin resurfacing technology delivers a seriously deep clean, the exfoliation process feels like a toothbrush on your skin and removes a layer of dead skin cells, the gentle suction lifts dirt, debris and blackheads from your pores like a mini-peel, which then allows your skin to absorb the hyrdrating antioxidant serums and hyaluronic acid which are infused next.

The whole treatment costs €150 and is suitable for anyone, but especially those with acne prone skin, dullness or dehydration.  This is one of those facials I’ll continue to keep going back for because I see instant results which is hugely gratifying and my skin continues to look a lot better for weeks after. I’ll only go make up-free after having Vit-illume, which is why it’s on my ultimate pre-holiday beauty checklist.

(Note: make sure to wear high SPF after this or any other facial treatment if you’re going to be in the sun).

3. The Lash Lift[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Lisa Eldridge LVL lashes

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]…because if it’s good enough for Lisa Eldridge.

I’m pretty much against lash extensions, semi permanent lashes or whatever you want to call them. As a make up artist, I’ve seen far too many victims of in-growns, infections, clumps of lashes falling out etc. Maybe they had a dodgy job, maybe they didn’t look after them, maybe it’s just bloody mental to use really strong glue to stick something to your eyes and leave them there for weeks on end! Call me cray, but I’ll stick to my natural lashes the majority of the time and use gentle latex Duo for a pair of falsies on a special occasion.

So, all that being said…my own lashes aren’t that long, are quite straight and the tips are fair so they look pretty unimpressive without mascara and who wants to waste time putting make up on before a day by the pool (or spend an age trying to remove waterproof mascara!)?. Well…..lucky LVL Lashes are the answer to my prayers! I went to Burgundy Beauty for the €48 treatment that takes about an hour and lasts 4-6 weeks. Here’s my before and after, the results really speak for themselves.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]LVL Lashes at Burgundy Beauty BlackrockLashes are lifted at the root (not curled like the old eyelash perms) making them look much longer, then a colour boost is applied so that they’re dark from root to tip. Magic!

4. The Hair Hero[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]It’s highly likely I’ll neglect my hair for the entire week I’m away.  I’ll always choose dry shampoo over the wet kind, I’ll allow sea salt and sand to sun-dry into my ends, I’ll convince myself I’m going for that tousled beach waves look which in reality is more the beginnings of crusty dreads. SO, it’s pretty imperative I look after my head before I jet off.

I popped into Dylan Bradshaw for the new Kérastase Chronologiste treatment that they’re calling ‘The Ultimate Cure for Hair & Scalp’. This stuff lists ‘Mimetic Caviar’ as an ingredient and promises to restore hair to it’s natural beauty, which of course must start with the scalp. It’s the first time I’ve heard of a hair product that actually exfoliates the scalp and it was a bit of a lightbulb moment. DUH, why haven’t we being doing this all along? We exfoliate the skin everywhere else on our body and our hair gets a lot more product build-up…it makes all the sense.

Something else I learned is that conditioner needs to be applied to towel-dried hair. Again, I feel like a fool for not doing this sooner. How can hair saturated with water absorb anything? The solution; keep a microfibre towel near the shower to soak up extra moisture before applying your conditioner, or in this case, the take home treatment Kérastase Chronologiste Essential Revitalizing Balm (€41, the shampoo is €27.60).

You can expect soft, shiny, manageable hair…honestly, this was the first time I’ve ever really been able to run my fingers through the lengths of my hair and not get caught up in tangles. Pack this in your holiday luggage to step onto home soil looking a lot less scarecrow-ish. Here’s my before and after, check out that shine!

Kérastase Chronologiste before and after

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]5. Them brows though.

No Ultimate Pre-Holiday Beauty Checklist would be complete without a bit of de-fuzzing. I’m not a fan of any facial waxing, it’s a bit harsh for the delicate skin on your face in my opinion. I much prefer threading, but I don’t fancy paying a lot for what is essentially five minutes with a bit of, well, thread. Of course you need an experienced threader who knows what they’re doing and each and every one of the girls I’ve been to at the Penneys Love Beauty brow bar knows her stuff, is efficient, friendly and fast! Eyebrow and lash tinting combo is only €12, while brow threading will set you back just €7…which means more pennies (sorry) for sunset cocktails. Winning.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Penneys Primark Love Beauty Brow and Nail Studio

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Right, I’m ready to go see that Tenerife sunset again! What’s on your to do list before you fly away?

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