21 December 2010


Hi everyone,
My daughter and I have had suspected swine flu. After a week of feeling like Hell, we're getting better, but we're still very tired, snotty and coughing constantly. So Beauty Cult is taking a break over Christmas while we both recover fully. Have a happy Christmas, and I'll see you all in the New Year.

5 December 2010

Ask a beauty expert

Have you got any burning questions that you'd like to ask a beauty industry expert? Well here's your chance to get it answered!

P&G, the company behind some of the biggest names in the industry including Max Factor, Olay, Clairol, Pantene, Sebastian and Sassoon, are hosting a live online event, where you can put questions to their team of beauty brand ambassadors.

When is it?
6pm Tuesday 7th December

Who'll be there?
  • H&S ­- Peter Lux - Creative Beauty Director for H&S
  • Max Factor & Caroline Barnes - Award Winning Make-up Artist
  • Olay & Kathy Rogerson, P&G Technical Expert
  • Pantene Pro V & Kathy Rogerson, P&G Technical Expert
  • Clairol & Kathy Rogerson, P&G Technical Expert
  • Silvikrin & Michael Douglas - Wellaflex Silvikrin Creative Director
  • Braun & Nicola Joss
  • Gillette Venus & Nicola Joss
  • Oral B & Dr. James Russell - TV Dentist & Oral B Ambassador
  • Sebastian Professional & Carly Roberts - Lead Creative Colourist from Marc Antoni & Dom Capel - Creative Stylist for Sebastian Professional
  • Wella Professionals Colour & Cristal Ludqvist - Creative Colour Director at HOB Salons
  • Wella Professionals Care & Style & Desmond Murray - Atherton Cox and Wella Care & Style UK ambassador
  • Sassoon Professional & Bruce Masefield - UK Creative Director for Sassoon Professional
How do I join in?

So there you go, easy peasy. You can register now to save you time on Tuesday, and I'd start thinking about your questions in advance. If you need a bit of inspiration, here's what I'm going to ask.

To Desmond Murry of Wella Professionals Care & Style: "Can damaged hair ever be repaired, or does the damage have to grow out?"

To Kathy Rogerson, of Olay: "Why did Olay change its name from Ulay?" (sorry, but product name changes bug me, I'd like to know how brands justify them).

And finally I'll ask Dr James Russell: "Do you believe they'll ever be a home tooth whitening product that can match a professional dentist treatment?"

So there is it, a simple way to get your questions answered by some of the big brand insiders.

* This is a sponsored post for P&G via Handpicked Media.

1 December 2010

Organic Colour Systems: a new way of hair colouring

I've put my hair through a lot. Colouring, straightening, Yuko, IHR, daily blow-drying...so it's not surprising it's in poor condition.

It’s true that some of these things I could avoid. But as a very dark brunette who's going very, very grey, colouring is a must, so I have to have my roots done at least every 6 weeks.

To top it all, I have an incredibly sensitive scalp. Hair dye tends to sting when it's been on for more than 5mins, and for the next two - five days I'm generally very itchy and flaky. And when I say flaky I mean I probably lose an entire layer of skin on my scalp. It’s unpleasant, and it's a lot to go through to cover the grey.

So you can see why I was intrigued to find out about Organic Colour Systems from Herb UK, a completely new way of colouring hair. This system contains really low levels of PPD, whic is the stuff that's in all permanent hair colours, to make it, well permanent. Organic Colour Systems contain 0.6%, but according to EU regulations, dyes can contain up to 6%. PPD is the ingredient most people who have reactions to hair dye are allergic to, and to make it even more tricky, it's one of those ingredients that can have a cumulative effect, one day you don't react, the next your head swells up.

I was lucky enough to go to Karine Jackson's salon to try out Organic Colour Systems. I was sent a skin test beforehand just to be sure I wouldn't have a reaction to the colour, and in all my years of having my hair coloured, this is something that’s never happened before!

My stylist, Arash, explained the processes to me. Unlike standard hair colours which are put on to dry hair, this system is put onto wet, just washed hair. After the wash my hair was wrapped in a hotel towel to open up the cuticles and prepare the hair for the colour. Once the colour is on you’re popped under the heat while it develops. Unlike normal dyes, it smells lovely, a sort of herby liquorice smell.

I was on high alert for my scalp stinging, and although it prickled very slightly, it was nothing compared to what I've put up with in the past.

I was really pleased with the colour, which matched my previous shade well – and yet managed to look a tad more natural. Even Mr Beauty Cult commented on how natural it looked, so it must be true!

Now normally the itching begins the next day. So I waited, and waited. And there was nothing. Just as I was about to jump up and down the joy, three days later the flaking began. When I brushed my hair mid way through the day I could see large flakes, and this carried on for about 36 hours or so and is now (five days later) just a small amount of small flakes. This might sound bad to you, but to me it’s much better than my usual experience. There was no itching, no scratching, and no sore areas from itching too much.

Plus, using the Organic Colour System means I’m doing less damage to my hair, and hopefully long term its condition will improve.

The lovely Karine is determined to get to the bottom of the problems, so she’s invited me back again in 6 weeks when we’ll hopefully solve my itchy head issues once and for all. She’s also recommended I get a Mason and Pearson brush, and give my hair and scalp a good brush daily to really exfoliate it.

I’ll report back again after that! I’ll also let you know how well the colour lasts – though at the moment it’s looking great.

A colour with Arash costs £64, and a cut £33.50 if done with colour, or £43.50 on it’s own.

To find an Organic Colour Systems salon near you call 01590 613490

The Karine Jackon salon is gorgeous, and I'd highly recommend Arash.

Karine Jackson
24 Litchfield Street, London WC2H 9NJ 
020 7836 0300