Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Chris Pine for Armani Code

A couple of weeks ago I attended the Press Conference for the launch of Armani Code Ice and the introduction of Chris Pine as the 'Face' of the line. I don't attend a lot of these events as they always seem to be style over substance. Not in this case.

There are now 3 versions of Armani Code and all 3 are actually really lovely. I'm not big on spiel but each of the men in the house prefers a different version of the fragrance. Ultimate is the favourite of Mr Hirons - which suits as its the more intense version and is so nice that I wear it myself. Lush.
Code (the original) belongs to Son No.1 - strong personality, confident etc -  and the new Ice is Son No.2 - it's younger, fresher and crisp. Just like Dan - who spends longer getting ready than anyone else in the house, including me. Seriously.

So job well done Armani. And as for Mr Pine or 'OOOH CAPTAIN KIRK!!' as Ruth called him (I'm not a Trekkie), he was perfectly charming. Down to earth, didn't take himself too seriously and talk about his 'craft' and yes, is that handsome in the flesh.

Armani Code Ice is available now at all stockists.

Sarah Chapman's first TSV

Sarah Chapman's first TSV for QVC UK goes live at Midnight but is already on the website. 
It contains the brilliant Overnight Facial, Ultimate Cleanse, Intense Hydrator Booster Serum, cleansing mitts, the facial massager and a sheet of the new 3D Moisture Infusion mask. 

The first three are worth £142.00 by themselves - without the extra bits thrown in. It's listed at £71.98 so well less than half price. 

Available on QVCUK.com now.

Lancome Hypnôse 10 year Anniversary and a £10 offer

Hypnôse - still the best mascara that Lancome make and easily one of the best on the market - is 10 years old on 1st May.

To celebrate, for one day only - on 1st May, you can buy any Hypnôse for £10.00 via Debenhams.

Available in all Debenhams stores and online at www.debenhams.com on 1st May only. *website crashes*

Friday, 25 April 2014


Last week the very lovely Ruth from A Model Recommends and I filmed a lot of videos. A LOT of videos - for YouTube.

Two of them have gone live and are available through the links below.

Morning Skincare Routine - via my channel

April Skincare Favourites - via Ruth's channel

I hope you like them. We had great fun making them. More to come!

Let me know what you think. :)

SWEET MOTHER OF GOD. Estee Lauder Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia Body Creme

I try a lot of products. LOTS. I know I'm still in the right business because I regularly try something and say 'OH SWEET MOTHER OF GOD!' which, to the uninitiated into the 'Hirons' household of film comments' is taken from 'Just Friends' - a family favourite. See also: 'I'm going to start drinking.'

I digress.

THIS: is the Body Creme of the divine Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia, which, if you like those scents and haven't tried, you are missing a very large trick.

It has THE most beautiful texture and absorbs beautifully. It's not completely overpowering like some fragrances in the same vein, but it was enough to make Mr Hirons seek me out and say 'What's that smell?' - in a good way. That literally never happens. It comes in those wonderful heavy, chunky perfect-for-dressing-tables jars of old and is just lushness personified.

See also: would make a gorgeous gift for upcoming Mother's Day (USA) - and if any of my kids are reading this - would always make a great gift for me.

Available at selected Estee Lauder counters and online here for £55.00.

Happy Friday!

The Winner of the Skin Consultation is....

Thank you so much for all of your entries.

The winner - chosen by random on Rafflecopter - is:


I've emailed you Zoe. Look forward to talking about pores very soon.

An Evening with Caudalie - Wednesday 21st May 2014 at 6.30pm

What do you get if you cross wine, cheese, gorgeous skincare and me? An 'Evening with Caudalie' that's WHAT.

On Wednesday 21st May I will be holding an Evening at Caudalie's lovely Covent Garden Boutique Spa. Come hang out and listen while I eat cheese and drink wine discuss ageing, antioxidants and lush Caudalie products. There will be mini-facials available (not from me - see wine/cheese comment), a goody bag and a Q&A.

Tickets are fully redeemable against purchases made on the night and are available on Eventbrite.co.uk.

See you there for some skincare, cheese and vino!

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

The Beauty Project - Selfridges and HUGHES

From 1st May until 12th June Selfridges are holding 'The Beauty Project'. A series of events and talks over a period of 6 weeks with the focus on all things beauty. 

Sali Hughes is compering a series of talks embracing everything from ageing to insider tips to how the industry treats women of colour.

I'm appearing on a panel with India Knight, Pearl Lowe and Brix Smith-Start on 13th May discussing our attitudes to ageing. 

Tickets are available at Eventbrite.co.uk and more information is available on Selfridges website about the entire project. 

See you there!

Young girls, 'thigh gaps', You Tube and the 'F' word.

Fat. The 'F' word I've probably used more recently than any other. Yes, even that one.

Long story short, I turned 40, broke my coccyx, bought a car, stopped walking everywhere, exercise was too painful - and I put on weight. No sh*t Sherlock. That is something I am still - and always will have, to work on. The back won't heal and I love my car.

What I let slip though was saying the 'F' word in front of my daughter. Fat - not the other one. She's used to that one. (Judge away - I'm human).

Then I heard stories from my child about girls at school talking about their 'thigh gaps'. Young women seeing a gap at the top of their thighs as something to look up to. Or saying things like 'Oh God I wish I had a gap like you!' to girls who are naturally thin. And some of her friends would call themselves fat in my presence - and my heart would sink.

These are young, healthy, intelligent, insanely intelligent, beautiful young women, who we are bombarding - through social media, advertising, videos (don't get me started on the videos) with images of what 'society' thinks is attractive. See also: Disney films. Anyone else notice that the girls in Frozen look like Bratz dolls? Big eyes, no waists, perfect boobs, long flowing hair that looks like it's trapped in a wind tunnel like a bad Meatloaf video from the 80's?
Yes, they may be the 'heroine' of the movie, but they look like a cartoon version of what real girls look like. And I'm sick of it.

This house is now an 'F' word free zone. I'm turning the 'F' in 'fat' to 'Fabulous'. I can't take it anymore.

We are our own worst enemy. I am in the process of editing my first YouTube videos. The first thing I thought when I saw them was 'God. Fat.' And I very quickly thought of my daughter - and her friends - and stopped myself. We are so much more than our outside appearances and yet we are continuously, relentlessly, made to feel inferior because we are not one of the 10 women in the world that look like the 10 supermodels in the world.

Watch this from Amy Poehler - it's wonderful.

No more. I'm sticking with the other F word. Fuck it.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Official Statement from Clinique

I've received a lot of comments lately stating that this balm, beloved by so many of us, is being discontinued. I asked Clinique for a statement - and received this today:

'We can confirm that Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm is not being discontinued. We are extremely sorry for any confusion caused at counter.

Due to the overwhelming increase in demand of the Balm, we are constantly working to increase supply to fulfill orders.

We have over 3,000 units of the Balm due into our warehouse at the end of April, and stock should begin to hit the majority of stores w/c 12th May.'

Hallelujah! Also: anyone who says blogs don't sell product is CRA-ZEE.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

AirMotion Pro Giveaway Winners

The five winners of the AirMotion brushes are:

  1. Ms. Magpie
  2. Jodi Butler
  3. Minty
  4. Jennifer C (right Jennifer)
  5. Debbie Herring
Can you please email us here with your full posting address asap? Please allow time for your delivery depending where you live - and allow for the UK Easter weekend holiday that is coming up! 

Congratulations to the winners and thanks to AirMotion Pro.

Friday, 11 April 2014

4 Years talking about pores! And a one-off Giveaway.


Today marks the 4 year anniversary of this blog. I'm so grateful to each and every one of you for your constant engagement, comments, tweets, emails - and for taking this journey with me.

Writing this blog has opened up so many opportunities for me - there was no way of knowing what lay ahead when I started writing here 4 years ago.

As a Thank You for your support I'm offering one reader the opportunity to win a skin consultation with me. Either in-person - or via Skype - whichever you prefer. Details on entry are below.

Thank you again - for everything. Good Luck! I hope to speak to one of you very soon!


  • Prize is one skin consultation with Caroline Hirons
  • No travel costs will be reimbursed, winner must pay their own travel to the appointment (or choose Skype!)
  • Appointment to be taken at a mutually convenient time
  • No cash alternative offered
  • Enter via Rafflecopter and leave a comment stating your favourite post of the last 4 years
  • Giveaway is open for one week and closes on Friday 18th April at Midnight.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Choice Books - Health: A Short Guide to a Long Life

If I took all of the advice in all of the books on health that I've read I'm pretty sure I'd be much healthier than I am. That doesn't stop me however, from reading as much as I can on the subject - and frequently.

David Agus MD was Steve Jobs' personal doctor - and as such he has both traditional views - and some that challenge modern 'Western' medicine. For example, he disagrees with 'detoxing' - and isn't a fan of juicing. And - music to my ears - advises against wearing high heels! *jazz hands*

This is a great, interesting, easy-to-read book and makes you think twice about a few things.

Available from all good book sellers and Amazon.

*purchase - non-affiliate 

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Beauty Myth No.8 - Moisturiser is your most important purchase

I've lost count of the amount of times I've had a conversation with people who are using an incredibly expensive moisturiser - but cleansing (or not) with wipes/a quick wash in the shower.

Your moisturiser is your coat. It's your protection and 'cushion' from the elements. Of course it's important - and yes, you can find moisturisers that contain all sorts of lovely wonderful things such as peptides, retinols and other active ingredients, but those ingredients will generally work better for you in a serum where they can more freely penetrate and get to work while your moisturiser stands guard.

There is absolutely no point in buying the latest 'wonder' cream if you've done no prep work. If you spend a fair amount of cash on your cleansing routine - to include acid toners - and a bit more on a serum, you can get away with saving your pennies on a moisturiser.

There are of course, as with anything in life, exceptions. If you are 40+ it would be worth using a high-tech moisturiser alongside your serum that also contains the actives found in your serum. Attack it from all angles by all means.

If you are on a tight budget spend what money you do have on exfoliating acids and a good serum - and you can get away with cheaper cleansers and moisturisers.

How much time do you spend choosing your coat in the morning compared to picking your outfit?

Your cleanse-tone-serum routine is your outfit. Put the work in and you'll see the results.

Just don't forget your coat.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

This Works No Wrinkles Midnight Moisture

You know when you get home - and you're exhausted/you've had a ridiculously long work day and you just want to go 'oomph' and collapse on the sofa? This is the cream you need to take care of your face while you do just that.

This Works has been around for a few years now and I've always dabbled in and out of the range - this though, is lovely and will be a permanent addition to my collection. This is not for you if you are a 20-something with spots. The second ingredient is shea butter - but if you aren't in that category, this is a beautiful cream.

Aqua (Water), Butyrospermum Parkii (shea butter), Simmondsia chinensis, Caprylic/CapricTriglyceride, Glycerin, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Glycerol Stearate PEG100, Xantham Gum, Dimethicone, alpha Tocopherol, Triethanolamine, Disodium EDTA, Phenyl ethyl alcohol, Rosa rubignosa (Rosehip oil), Oenethera biennis, Prodizia, Lactic acid, Retinol, Hexapeptide-3, Hyaluronic acid, Collagen Peptide – M2 Marine, ACE, Citrus aurantium flos, Lavandula angustifolia, Cymbopogon martini, Pelargonium graveolens, Rosa damascena.

It has retinol, peptides galore, lactic acid and hyaluronic acid - but it doesn't feel at all like your typical anti-ageing night cream. I've been using oils overnight for years - this though, has snapped me back into using a night cream - and I'm really enjoying it. It's luxurious, absorbs brilliantly - and my skin had a noticeable difference in the morning. Any cream that can do that for me gets the thumbs up. 

Midnight Moisture is £46.00 and available online www.thisworks.com and at Space NK/Boots etc

Monday, 7 April 2014

Sunday Riley: The difference between Artemis, Juno and Isis

As soon as I posted the picture above on Instagram I was inundated with questions asking what the difference was between the 3 oils.

Here is a very quick guide:

All three are dry oil formulas and made with 100% organic cold pressed seed oils - where they differ is what oils they contain and which skin types they are for. All of the oils below however, will give you the word I'm so obsessed with at the moment: GLOW.

The original.
Juno is high in powerhouse, antioxidant-rich, superfood seed oils and the key difference from the others - and the reason I think it is so popular - is that it is completely essential oil free - and thus suitable for skin that doesn't play well with essential oils. Loaded omega 3/6/9, essential amino acids, vitamins A&C it's a natural anti-inflammatory.

Key ingredients:
  • blackberry seed oil
  • blueberry seed oil
  • cranberry seed oil
  • red raspberry seed oil
  • black cumin seed oil
  • wild carrot seed oil
  • broccoli seed oil
Skin type: All/Sensitive

Artemis is aimed at a slightly confused skin - it is clarifying and toning and smells nicer than Juno due to the medicinal lemon ironbark and myrtle. This one is anti-inflammatory, cleansing and purifying. 

Key ingredients:
  • lemon ironbark essential oil
  • lemon myrtle essential oil
  • pink grapefruit essential oil
  • pomegranate seed oil
  • black cumin seed oil
  • milk thistle seed oil
  • flax seed oil
Skin type: Congested/Inflamed/Dull/Combination

Isis Now called Flora
Flora is your pick-me-up and back-me-up and is aimed at a slightly older skin. It includes Russian, Bulgarian and Turkish roses and is anti-wrinkle, regenerating and helps support the fatty acid content of the epidermis. Restores radiance, texture and hydration on a cellular level.

Key ingredients:
  • rose essential oil
  • palma rose essential oil
  • rose geranium essential oil
  • rosehip seed oil
  • pomegranate seed oil
  • wild carrot seed oil
  • chia seed oil
  • tomato seed oil
Skin type: Dehydrated/Fatigued/Mature (me)

All of these oils can be used over or under moisturiser or on their own.
I tend to use a couple of drops in the morning under my moisturiser if I'm wearing make-up or slightly more in the evening - either on its own or on top of my serums.

Sunday Riley is available from Sephora.com  and www.CultBeauty.com

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Guilty Pleasure - and one of my most repurchased items - Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush glosses

I've been meaning to blog about these for the longest time - but didn't want to until I'd stocked up. Selfish cow - I know.

Victoria's Secret - they of the tres expensive yet tres tres comfortable bras - do a tight selection of beauty/cosmetics - it's what you'd expect - extremely sweet perfumes (some of which I also secretly love), body products, the basic makeup range and lip glosses. Oh the lip glosses. I have been in love with these glosses for years. Years. The picture above shows the repackaged version of my favourite range - they are now called Beauty Rush and come in 26 shades. 26! We don't get that many in the UK - but you lucky US dwellers will.

They are the exact colour that you see, the ones I buy have no shimmer - but they are available in differing depths of pigment and with shimmer if that's your thing. The applicator is the tube itself - perfectly slanted with a small opening so you don't drown in gloss with one slight push. They are flavoured/smelly - almost like cotton candy. I love that though.
If I had to take one lip gloss to a desert island - it would be Candy,Baby - which in the picture above is book-ending the other two: Yummy Berry and Citrus Kissed. The absolute perfect pink. For me. If you want really sophisticated formulas and a fashion designer's name on your products - these may not be for you. I love a swanky lip gloss as much as the next girl - but for all day/everyday use? These win every time.

And the best part: these are 4 for £20.00. Annoyingly they are also 4 for $20.00 - which tells you everything you need to know about rip-off Britain and why I take an empty suitcase when I go to the US.


Saturday, 5 April 2014

Fake it 'til you make it. Products that give you GLOW.

I'm frequently asked what makeup I use - especially when I'm bringing the glow products out. Which, these days, is every. damn. day. Welcome to my new Series: Fake it 'til you make it.

When you are 20 something you spend 2 minutes on your base - and ages on your eyes.
When you are 40 something you spend most of your time on your base - and I stopped wearing eyeshadow years ago.
Pigmentation, discoloration, uneven skin tone - it can all be covered by a good base and concealer.  And these days I even use a primer - albeit a primer designed to give a 'glow' to the skin.

Both of the products below have saved my face on more than one occasion. They take me from '40+ just got out of bed didn't sleep the kids are sick/being noisy and I may have drunk too much wine' to 'WOW she CANNOT have FOUR children how does she do it? she looks so FRESH' in a matter of 15 seconds:

First up:

Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow

The launch of Charlotte Tilbury's range last year was one of the better-executed launches I have seen in a long, long time. Specific, strategic and she owned it. When a small group of us were given early access to the products before the launch I could literally feel her passion. Makeup is her life. And where it becomes obvious is in the product. Wonder Glow for example, is something she said was perfect for 'doing the school run'. Although I doubt Char has ever done a school run in the car with no bra and a pineapple bun (I digress) - I knew there and then that this would work for me. It was a product made for me. And it's beautiful. Light, luminous, luscious. Gives the skin a beautiful glow and makes your skin look radiant.

And the other must-have primer in my kit is....

pixi Flawless Beauty Primer

This product was originally gifted to me by pixi after my glowing review of the Glow Tonic. And I honestly didn't pay it enough attention until earlier this year during my Nana's sickness when I was travelling a lot up and down the motorway and not getting enough sleep and working and..and..and....
I had lunch with Petra - the Founder of pixi - just before Christmas. Petra is a force of nature - if it's in the make-up world she's seen it, done it, worked with it, sold it - she basically worked her butt off to get where she is and has done it with compassion and a deep, deep understanding of women and their needs. This primer literally makes me look like I've been on holiday. Relaxed, with a little colour and glowing - this does it with one pump. It's called 'Flawless' - it should be called 'Effortless'. 

If you have a face, I highly, highly, recommend these products and suggest that you check them out.

Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow is £38.50 and available online and from Selfridges and net-a-porter.

pixi Flawless Beauty Primer is £20.50 and available online and from ASOS and Target.

Instagram Saturday

Mother's Day present from my babygirl. A defaced picture frame of us at her Christening.

Said 'Babygirl' loving the new One Direction fragrance 

Revisited this album from Everything but the Girl - sublime.

Hit pan on my favourite blusher. NARS Sin - simply the best blusher ever made.

I do love a bit of Ole.

THE most beautiful gift box from Tory Burch - if you're struggling to give a good gift - this is effortless. It's now holding the necklaces from my last Instagram catch-up. 

Clinique's new Lash Power mascara - water-resistance without the allergic reactions to waterPROOF.

OSKIA Restoration Oil - in testing now.

Peacocks delaying me on my way to work!

Trying to keep 4 kids full is never-ending. There was a time when our fridge was always empty. I never, ever take it for-granted.

I can't help feeling like my Nana (in the picture behind) is laughing at the craziness of my family - and joining in - wherever she is.

One of the best reviews on Amazon.

My new lovely blues.

THIS. Especially this week.

This. To keep me going through NEXT week.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Choice Books - Beauty: A Guide for Health & Beauty Therapists

I am always asked about my beauty therapy training and what advice I can give to people studying/thinking about studying beauty therapy. I will do more posts of this nature and about 'How to get ahead in the Industry' etc but thought I would start with the basics.

The Gaynor Winyard 'A Guide for Health & Beauty Therapists' was my Bible when I was at Steiner. It's quite detailed and although some of the advice/language may be a tad outdated it is a brilliant starting point for therapists. It gives detailed information on anatomy, systems of the body, structure of the cells, tissues of the body, structure and functions of the skin, lymphatics, skin analysis and much, much more.

Its available on Amazon and the IBN codes are as follows for those Overseas:
 058224790X  978-0582247901 

Hope it helps!

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Caudalie Polyphenol C15

Caudalie is a brand that I trained in over 15 years ago and have continued to use since then. Their Nourishing Body Lotion is still one of my favourites and is brilliant if you suffer from dry skin. They now have 11 Collections within the range and I know from my skin consult appointments that they can sometimes cause confusion - but rest assured this new range is both simple, affordable and works a treat.

Polyphenol C15 is aimed at the 30+ - however, as its primary function is to act as a super antioxidant, this is really suitable for all ages - especially if you expose your skin to stress and pollution - which is all of us.

The Anti-Wrinkle Defense Serum is the star of the range and is a potent antioxidant boost/free radical protecting machine. It has the highest concentration of polyphenols and includes stabilised vitamin C and hyaluronic acid to protect and plump. The texture is really light and it absorbs beautifully. This would be perfect as a serum for all skin types but also worth thinking about for when you are on holiday/in particular extremes of weather as a booster of protection.

The eye cream has the same ingredients as the serum with added Matrixyl 3000 - a brilliant mix of peptides to help with fine lines and wrinkles which is all too frequently lauded as a 'wonder' ingredient in extremely expensive eye creams. This one is £26.00.

Regular readers will know that I generally have an aversion to moisturisers with SPF. I tend to stick with moisturisers and then apply an SPF. However: I know that a lot of readers don't want that faff and I am always asked for moisturisers with SPF - this one is lovely. 

It's light, absorbs brilliantly and smells beautiful (as an aside). It's not greasy and works compatibly with other serums from other brands (a question I am also always asked!). It has already been commandeered by Mr Hirons.

The Caudalie Polyphenol C15 range launched this week and is available at all Caudalie stockists. Good stuff.

Aerin Spring New Essentials

Limited Edition Kaleidolight Palette - £40.00
Beautiful Rose Balm -  perfect for balm addicts such as myself - £40.00

Rose Balm Lipsticks - crazy soft and smooth glorious lippies - £25.00

Totally gratuitous picture of the Hand Cream and Lip Conditioner - for the umpteenth time on the blog - but seriously, these two are amazing.

I have an obsession with Interiors/Lifestyle books - and Aerin has a new one that's stunning. Just when you think you couldn't 'crave' wallpaper. Think again.

Beauty at Home by Aerin Lauder

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Instagram catch-up

Raved about this moisturiser

Sold a lot of that moisturiser at this event

Ran out of this lushness. Every last drop.

A little light metal reading.

Cleansed with all 3 of these at the same time.  (One after the other!) Just for fun. :)

Used these a LOT

Captured something new (Shard) behind something very, very old (The Tower)

Drove past Stonehenge on the way home from Devon. Not a bad view...

Added these to the bathroom to make sure I never run out.

THIS! Always this!

Showed how FABULOUS you can look if you use Perricone's New Mask. You're welcome.

Shouted at Perricone for discontinuing this

*in Country heaven with the Dixie Chicks*

Trialled this new SPF from Dr Lens that is bloody amazing.

Had some statement necklace addiction issues

Stopped the cat eating Karl's doll

Celebrated 10 years of this wonder product

Met Zoe Newlove - who is lovely - go read her blog.

Behaved like schoolgirls with Ree at the launch of Viktor & Rolf's beautiful new fragrance #Bonbon - Yes we took a shameless selfie with them behind us.

Screamed like a girl (appropriately) when I saw this monogrammed bottle just pour moi! (Although it does mean I can't EVER use it!)

Cried 5 times waiting for Sheila at the airport - the Grandmother meeting her grandkids for the first time literally had all of us sobbing *cries thinking about it*

Took my Babygirl to the Tower. Didn't leave her there though. Also - I should really wear different clothes occasionally.