I’ve been a little blue recently. Haven’t we all? A sense of vague discombobulation, forgetfulness, non-specific fatigue. And then a few weeks ago the Corens got a very bad vomiting bug, all four of us, one after another (have I mentioned this already?) and it knocked me out for about a week. Now we’ve all got a cold, more fatigue, a scratchy throat, I can’t decide which is worse.
And it’s more than that, it goes deeper, it’s worse. I just feel so uninspired. There is no-one in the world more acquisitive or covetous of shiny items and new things than me and yet for the past few months I’ve bought nothing. I’ve wanted nothing. I’ve coveted nothing. I’m like Geoffrey Rush in Pirates of the Caribbean: empty. Except that when moonlight shines on me I’m not a skeleton but still half a stone overweight. Badoom tish.
So it has taken me a while to scrape together items worth your attention, but I find myself now with a pocketful that I thought might not be a total waste of your time. As the title suggests, they are random but within there might be something that sets a tiny bell tinkling and sometimes that’s the most you can ask for.
1 The Inkey List Salicylic Acid face wash
This, it turns out, is the nuclear warhead in my arsenal of skincare products. I am still devoted to Decree, but I have added this salicylic acid face wash in to my weekly routine and I think that as a result my skin is amazing at the moment. Smooth, bright and really clear. If you have any congestion issues, I recommend it to you highly.
I have never bought anything from Glossier before and I have quietly dismissed the entire brand as over-hyped 90% marketing crap for teenagers. And I stand by that! But, on a whim I bought two Ultralip sticks and I am just stunned by their excellent quality. I am very fussy about lip things, they must be lightweight, unscented and moisturising and these are utterly terrific. I have got one in Lucite, which makes my lips a paler, better version of themselves (if you have big lips, as I do, you often want to tone them down) and also Villa, a sort of dusty rose colour that mimics the odd browny purple colour that my lips go when they are cold. This, I admit, sounds awful but somehow it works.
3 New products from Beauty Pie
Beauty Pie isn’t for everyone. Some don’t understand or like the pricing structure and get pissed off with it, others don’t get along with the ingredients (there is a reliance on silicates). For targeted dermatological problems, (rosacea, uncontrollable zits, hyperpigmentation, extra head etc) you’re possibly better off using medicated or specialised products. But for those who like Beauty Pie, it really works and I think it represents real value. I have no formal arrangement with Beauty Pie, but every time they bring a new product out, they send me one to try and not everything gets a mention. My most recent delivery included two primers, a matt and a “bright”. I have been using the brightening “Wonderfilter” one on its own (as I always like to use the bare minimum of make-up that it will take to make me look okay) and I think it’s delightful and much better than a Becca one I tried recently. If you are interested in signing up with Beauty Pie, if you use the code ESTHERSENTME you get an extra £50 credit.
4 Event dressing
If you have a major event to attend this summer and have a healthy budget, I really recommend this co-ord from Claudie Pierlot. If you look good in a halter neck, there is a that option for the top-half and if not, there is a sort of short-sleeve shirt arrangement. Very modern, I think, striking and fresh. And no need for any leg admin.
5 Early Morning Riser
There has been a lot of press about for Early Morning Riser, Katherine Heiney’s excellent follow-up to Standard Deviation. It’s been the only thing I’ve been able to read recently and if you even half-like Anne Tyler, you will love this.
6 Sleep-in hoops
I have been wearing these earrings almost non-stop. They are from the online store of my dear friend Rachel Hawkins, who runs a very smart hat-for-hire shop in Stow on the Wold; she saw her business decimated by the virus and quickly pivoted to this online offering. She has been very brave about it all and also resilient and cheerful. As my dad would say: “We won the war with women like her” or is it “It’s women like her that won us the war”? I can never remember, but both sound good. I imagine you’re the same sort. These lightning bolt hoops have a badass air to them, which is very important to me, and you don’t have to take them out at bedtime. I also quite fancy the lobster earrings on the site. Or have I gone mad.
A quick reminder to assess your vitamin situation. The poor weather we’ve been having has led to a (I think) national dip in Vitamin D and C. My friend *put fake name here* has been feeling so bad that she went for a full body MOT and cancer screening whatsit! She took the neurosis right out of my mouth. I was feeling really appalling yesterday, then I realised I hadn’t taken any vitamins for months. I took 2 Zincovit, 1 spritz of Vitamin D spray and a magnesium tablet and this morning felt a little better. Yes, yes, I’m sure it is psychosomatic but, like, who cares?
I went to return some Gap jeans at an outlet village recently – because Gap have now shut all their high street shops – and felt absolutely zero interest in going into a single other shop. Not one. I mean, I don’t buy many clothes any more anyway, but I do love to have a good riffle and fantasize about things I could buy for the life I don’t lead. Am I ok? Or am I just totally preoccupied with kitchen refurb and imminent puppy (not a recommended combo btw)? Or have I just finally got my priorities in the correct order? For me, I mean; if your main opportunity for dressing up is a trip to the hairdresser, you’re with me; if you need real clothes and proper nice shoes on a daily basis, then of couse they come high up the list, you luck devil!
It will be really fascinating to see how our consumerism fares after this, and what changes people make.
Sorry if there are typos, for some reason I can’t see what I’m typing, just the top smidge of the text. V disconcerting.
That IS disconcerting. But it all made perfect sense. I think it’s priorities and also age presenting me with some hard truths
Age and the acceptance that it doesn’t really, actually, matter how fashionable you are any more, as long as you are clean, presentable and sufficiently appropriately dressed that people don’t ask if you’re really ok, hun?
And a big yes to vitamins. Not a great pill-popper but we have been religiously consuming a horse-pill-sized multivit since last March and I am in no way inclined to desist yet.
Completely agree with this. During lockdown I was dreaming of going into shops just to browse and touch things like I used to. Since things have reopened I’ve been a couple of times and no interest. No need to buy anything. I’m still living in jogging bottoms so why bother with real clothes? To be fair, I did buy a couple of new sweatshirts from Uniqlo just to replace my manly lockdown ones, but they were straight replacements. I would never have done that pre pandemic!
Hypochondria aside, I often think a full body MOT would be a good idea, but never know how to go about booking one? 🤔🤔🤔 Any recommendations?
Good question I will ask my friend who had it done