Bambi Does Beauty, reveals the 30 beauty lessons she’s learnt as she turns 30

It’s 9pm, on the eve of my 30th birthday, and what better way to celebrate then throwing my hair into a bun, burying myself in my laptop and reeling off the ultimate beauty lessons I’ve learnt – from the day I purchased my first Lancome Juicey Tube, ‘till now. Let’s go…

1. Good skin isn’t just about skincare

Your diet, hormonal changes, lifestyle and whatever prescriptions you are taking can all link back your largest organ, your skin.

2. Bad packaging happens to great products

You know that feeling like they’re almost doing it on purpose to taunt you?! Just to make you hack at the middle with scissors, cut your hand and are left scraping the remnants of your favourite body lotion out of sharp edged plastic.

3. Antioxidants are a pretty big deal

Now this took me the longest to get my head around. It’s a term we hear flying about the skincare industry so much it’s easy to nod your head in agreement without actually knowing why – but antioxidants in skincare (Vitamin C for example) are incredibly effective at keeping skin your defended against elements (like pollution) that can damage healthy skin cells and cause our skin to age at a rate faster than most of us would appreciate!

4. Don’t buy cheap razors

I’m talking about those disposables you’re scoping at the end of the aisle in your local discount beauty store. We’ve all been there, and no one really enjoys spending what seems an outlandish amount for some razor blades but trust me, if you’re going to shave, it’s worth spending a few extra £’s for not only a better experience, but skin as smooth as a seal.

5. Always keep a squalane oil in your skincare stash

It sounds dramatic but discovering squalane oil has saved my skin from many a disaster. It is the oil to make me fall for oils again. Fragrance free, non irritating and an ultimate skin saviour when it comes to inflammation (whether it be from a product reaction or a drying skin condition like rosacea).

6. Wear perfume even when you’re not leaving the house

Perfumes were a ritual that often confused me as a teenager, I’d visit my friends houses to see a plethora of bottles (JLO Glow I’m talking to you) and I may have owned one that lasted me the year. It’s taken me this long to see their value, which of course can also be decorative, but there’s something very powerful about spritzing your go-to scent in the morning. I’ve even got into the habit of doing it before filming when no one is even there to notice it, which goes to show it’s psychological value.

7. Turns out your mum was right about suncream

Those UV rays will penetrate clouds and get to your skin, so even when it’s not sunny it’s worth using one. SPF is the most affordable and effective ‘anti ageing’ skincare product you can buy.

8. Glycolic acid is for your body too!

As is lactic, mandelic, salicylic, the list goes on. Your limbs will just feel smoother and softer (no heavy duty scrubbing needed). It’s truly a game changer for dry scaly legs in particular, as well as keratosis pilaris and mild body acne.

9. Brow growth serums can actually work

If you are consistent. Use morning and night for at least a month, I’ve heard lash serums can work just as well too!

10. Essences aren’t ‘just water’

Gone are the days I’d turn my nose up in contempt at the watery serums and essences I’d get sent, at the ripe old age of 30 I’ve finally understood their importance, and in short… hello HYDRATION.

  • La Roche Posay Toleriane Ultra 8 Concentrate Mist, £19.50, Boots
  • Shiseido Treatment Softener, £47, Shiseido
  • La Mer Treatment Lotion, £115, John Lewis
  • Curél Moisture Facial Lotion, £17.50, Boots
  • Dermalogica Ultra Calming Mist, £31.98, Amazon

Use your thickest most industrious cleanser to remove makeup and SPF, and your lightweight cleanser to cleanse and condition your skin. You’ll also need a decent flannel, which leads me to number 12…

12. Buy lots of flannels, and wash them after a day’s use

I would never have anticipated how important flannels would be to me, but here we are. Ps the ones that come with the Emma Hardie cleanser are pretty unbeatable, if you know you know.

13. Sleep with an oil in you hair

Preferably hazelnut oil, the gloopier the better. Body oils often double up as great hair masks too.

14. A red lipstick takes a look from basic to bouji

I have a fondness for a no-makeup makeup look as you may know, but once in a while adding a bright red lip can make the look feel very powerful.

15. Less is often more

I’m talking about retinol, exfoliating acids, and often even percentages of ingredients in formula concentrations. More isn’t always better/more effective.

16. As it happens, Victoria Beckham is quite the skincare connoisseur!

And her collaboration with Augustinus Bader has me hooked at every product launch. I treasure every drop of her Cell Rejuvenating Power Serum.

17. Pilling is a skincare sin

The way to prevent the dreaded pilling effect – when topical products aren’t absorbed properly and start ‘balling up’ after application – is to look out for too much silicone in your skincare. I only use one silicone product per routine (labelled under ‘Dimethicone’ in the ingredients list) the higher up the list, the more of it is in the product.

18. Bleaching your hair will damage it; there’s no escaping it

I’m currently growing my natural hair colour out and the difference between the texture of my roots and the ends are shocking – bleach why you do dis? There are however some hair masks that can really help dry, frizzy, parched ends…

19. Apply blush to the bridge of your nose

It will make you look like a 12 year old who’s had too much sun and if that’s not the look you’re going for then you’re probably in the wrong place LOL.

20. You can use exfoliating acids on your lips, too

As someone who suffers from relatively dry lips, there’d be no way I’d apply any sort of lip product before shedding that dead skin first! My secret weapon is the AHA infused Fresh Sugar Lip Wonder Drops.

21. The Wet Brush is a desert island product

Well, perhaps if I was stranded on a desert island I’d see it as an opportunity to try the beachy look but you get my sentiment! Honestly, pre-shower, in-shower, post-shower, in-bag when out and about. It’s one of the only brushes not to pull on my thick hagrid-esque hair.

22. The more you appreciate the way YOU look, the more beautiful you will become

As I’ve gotten older I’ve become far more comfortable in my own skin, and I think it shows. I no longer feel obligated to wear makeup when I leave the house. I bare my real skin on good and bad skin days, age definitely does bring a certain unapologetic confidence.

23. Acne is an inside job

I’m not talking a blemish, a few pimples or some congestion/blackheads, I mean moderate to severe acne. The type where you’ve tried every product on the shelves in the hope of clearing it. I’ll always point those with severe acne skin conditions in the direction of a doctor/derm as often the acne is a symptom of an internal imbalance.

24. Acid exfoliating pads make for great fake tan removers!

I don’t know who I was before I learnt this but acid exfoliating pads are saviours for fake tanned stained cuticles, palms and fingertips (just make sure to use straight after you’ve applied your tan)

25. Milia can actually go away by itself

Truly it often does, and I would never recommend trying to remove it yourself at home. Using acid exfoliants consistently can help speed up that process.

26. Gua Shas are actually quite enjoyable!

In no way essential to a skincare routine, but definitely enjoyable and effective at releasing tension, gua sha is a natural therapy that involves scraping your skin with a massage tool to improve circulation. Try using it on the brow bone and jawline in particular (you’d be surprised at how much tension we hold there!)

27. Don’t mess with your skin barrier

It’s oh so easy to over use products in the fight for clear glass skin, but if taken too far it can leave you with the opposite of the desired effect. I’m talking red, inflamed itchy swollen skin. If this does ever happen to you, here are my go-to’s to calm and heal…

  • Avène Cicalfate Restorative Protective Cream, £8, Boots
  • La Roche Posay Toleriane Ultra 8 Concentrate Mist, £19.50, Boots
  • Dermalogica Ultra Calming Mist, £31.98, Amazon
  • Patchology FlashMasque Hydrate 5 Minute Sheet Mask, £8, Cult Beauty
  • Indeed Labs Squalane Oil, £19.99, Cult Beauty
  • Egyptian Magic All Purpose Cream, £30, Look Fantastic
  • Aurelia Probiotic Skincare Concentrate, £38, Cult Beauty

At the time I booked my 10 laser hair removal sessions I had nothing to my name but an overdraft and a bikini line which was edging dangerously close to my knees (lol), so my mum had to use her card to book my sessions (soz mum) and I’m so thankful because it has given me so much confidence when it comes to baring my body. Nothing will permanently remove hair, but it’s made it softer fluffier and sparser which after having my legs compared to a “cheese grater” I’m more than happy with the results. If you can’t get to a salon you can also get effective at home IPL devices.

29. Look at ingredients lists!

I’ve grown into the habit of bypassing the pretty packaging and turning bottles around to scourer the ingredients list. Knowing what skincare ingredients do, what works for your skin and what doesn’t will land you in good stead; and save you from making spending mistakes on the latest “must have” product that maybe you just don’t need.

30. Everyone always wants what they don’t have

Curly hair? You’ll want it straight. Oily skin? You’ll wish it was drier. The list goes on, the more you embrace what makes you you, and let go of what you can’t change, the bolder your beauty will become.

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