How to cut your own hair and other home beauty treatments
Every so often on Mumsnet Talk we experience a perfect storm of beauty advice, where a Mumsnetter locates a method that combines all the factors most-beloved on the Style & Beauty boards - cost, simplicity, and results. <drum roll> Let us introduce you to the Mumsnet Haircut, otherwise known as how to cut your own hair.
How to cut your own hair: The Mumsnet Haircut
MNers have claimed this home-made hairstyle as their own, but credit must go to celebrity hairstylist Lee Stafford, who demonstrates the method here.
Rather remarkably, cutting your own hair consists of not doing much other than putting long hair in a pony-tail on the crown of the head, towards the front, and cutting and feathering it while still tied up.
"Do it! I've done it a few times, bloody hate going to the hairdressers and coming out with a style I hate because I just sit there, nod, and agree to anything. Make sure you have decent hair-cutting scissors so you aren't hacking away at it and making it shorter and shorter... and just cut a little bit at first to make sure you're doing it right!" SheWillBeLoved
Mumsnetter TrillianAstra has cut her own hair as well, with great success: "I have curly hair, but cut it wet so straight when being cut. Shortest layer on mine is near chin-length, I wouldn't do it shorter with my hair."
If you decide to give it a shot, put the ponytail on the parting, so that the style is shortest at that point and feathers outwards. But bear in mind one Mumsnetter's experience: "I did it a while ago - I ended up going to the hairdressers the next day, blaming it on a friend. It was awful."
Fear not, though, another Mumsnetter, Rockbird, has the answer. "The trick," she says, "is not to hack a load off in one go. Do it in stages, so nothing is irreparable."
The oil-cleansing method
To those of us who rigorously scrub away with cleansers and soaps every night, the idea of using an oil to cleanse the skin seems distinctly counter-intuitive. However, the style gurus of Style & Beauty report never having looked so good since they switched to using oils. You can read a full, frank and very-nearly-tedious explanation here.
Basically, the idea is that oil dissolves oil, while it also moisturises. It's not dissimilar to the Eve Lom or Liz Earle cleansing method, whereby a hot muslin is used to steam the pores open while a cream is gently rubbed in. The one massive difference is price. Castor oil and sunflower seed oil costs pennies by comparison.
"It took me a while to get my combination right as I have fairly oily, combination skin, but the suggestion for oily skin made my skin too dry so I put more almond oil in. My skin feels lovely after I've done it. One thing I have noticed is that it seems to be drawing out my blemishes as it said it would. I keep thinking I notice a spot that is going to be huge in the morning but there is nothing there in the morning so that's good!" bluebump
"If you want some good, quality plant-based oils to use on your skin, I can highly recommend Essentially Oils and Bay House Aromatics. I am an aromatherapist and use both of these companies for my base and essential oils. They sell to non-trade customers, too. You will generally find that the base oils available from these companies will be much better quality and less processed than regular oils from Boots etc. They can be expensive but you should bear in mind that you will be buying say 500ml, which will last you at least six months. You should decant what you need on a weekly basis and store the rest in a dark, cool place away from sunlight (which degrades the oils).
You can also use enrichers in your base oil (so 30% enricher plus 70% base oil). These are still found in the base oil/vegetable oils sections - don't confuse them with essential oils. They have different properties so:
Dry skin: evening primrose, avocado, wheatgerm or macadamia oil
Oily skin: jojoba, hazelnut
Acne: calendula (anti-inflammatory)
Sensitive: evening primrose
If you are adding essential oils to your face oil please ensure you only use one drop in 30ml of base. This is the maximum you want to go near your face - they can burn the skin if used in too high a concentration." MrsJohnSimm
Be aware, too, that castor oil (often found on the forrin foods shelves of supermarkets) does not agree with everyone, and finding the formulation to suit you might take time. But judging by the heaps of delighted threads on the Mumsnet Talk boards, the results can be magnificent. And you know what, you are Worth It. <twirls>
Do, please, bring your top tips and (in these belt-tightening times) money-saving ideas to the Style & Beauty boards, where a willing audience of cranky women will either tear them apart with their bare but well-moisturised hands, or snatch them up gratefully and worship you as a goddess.