I’m a bit of a geek when it comes to gadgets, but like to keep my beauty routine as simple and streamlined as possible, so can’t be bothered with beauty gadgets unless they really cut the mustard. For now, let’s ignore the neglected stash in the drawer and take a look at the winners I keep coming back to…
Babyliss New Big Hair, £39.99 - £5 off at Boots - regular readers will know that I’ve loved the original Big Hair since it first launched. I’m on my second and lived in fear that it might be discontinued, so imagine my delight to hear that they had launched a swish new model! In all honesty, if you have the original, you don’t *really* need to make the switch as it’s not different enough to justify, but first timers, get in! The styling is more sleek, the barrel larger and the mechanism slightly more sophisticated. Since having my hair cut (more on that soon) I haven’t quite mastered the new technique with this, but it’s still my all time favourite beauty gadget, which big/long/fuzzy/thick/unmanageable-haired girls need in their lives!
Move M by NudeAudio, £39 at Amazon - I love to listen to a few tunes while doing my hair and make-up, especially when getting ready for a night out, and am loving this cute, portable wireless speaker which plays music from my phone or iPod at distances up to 10m. Compatible with Smartphones, tablets and other devices that support Bluetooth wireless audio, I basically take mine everywhere I go as the sound is way superior to my iPhone speaker. NB despite obvious connotations, NudeAudio is not waterproof, so no taking it into the shower!
The Wet Brush, £6.95 at Sally’s - a gadget in its simplest form, there is quite a lot of science behind the US version of a Tangle Teezer and America’s biggest selling hairbrush. I’ve been a Tangle Teezer devotee for years, but prefer to use this now as the traditional shape is much more secure and comfortable to hold. It’s also prettier (loving the metallic red for Christmas!) and the beaded bristle tips feel gently massage my scalp. Having experimented on family and friends, this seems to work particularly well on thick wavy hair or fine straight hair.
Braun Silk-epil 7 - reduced from £129.99 to £83.99 at Boots. I’ve always steered clear of epilators and approached the experience with great caution, after a couple of close friends recommended taking the plunge. I actually tested two different models for review in recent months. The first was a Remington EP70210, which did the job, but took a lot longer (and more ‘discomfort breaks’) to achieve the same results. I think this may be more of a reflection on the price than the brand, as a friend tried a higher spec Remington with more positive results (read Avril’s review here). Personally, I found the Braun Silk Epil much smoother, quicker and easier to use - long strokes instead of repeated circular movements, the option of using it wet or dry and hair growth seemed slower afterwards (around 10 days). I will definitely continue to use this, though may be tempted to skimp a little post party-season until Spring!
Magnitone Pulsar, currently half price - £65 at Boots. Move over Clarisonic, there’s a new facial brush in town and it works on the body too. This skin brushing/cleansing system removes impurities and helps slough away dead skin cells to reveal smoother, brighter skin. I tested it on one side of my face for a week and couldn’t resist using it all over after that as the softness and clarity was distinctly better on the side where it had been used. I use mine as a second cleanse on sensitive mode (with Pai Camelia & Rose, which I love!) several times a week - it feels very gentle and only takes one minute, so doesn’t prolong my regime. Although I’ve tried the larger body brush head on my décolleté and dry patches, I haven’t used it all over regularly as I prefer a traditional exfoliator for all over body use, purely due to lack of patience! I can imagine this being great to treat any self tanning mishaps mind you!
Babyliss Pro Porcelain Conical Wand, £23.95 at Beauty Bay. I bought this last year in the largest barrel size - 19mm, which allows me to create large curls at the widest end and smaller ones at the narrow tip. I avoid using direct heat styling products on my hair as much as possible as they dry it out, but on special occasions when I want to make an extra effort, this wins over all of my heated rollers and fancy pants styling devices every time. Why? It’s so quick and easy to use - I can get a whole head of long lasting curls in around 10 minutes. Result.
What are your favourite beauty gadgets?