Wonderlush


A pretty little LUSH, Beauty & Lifestyle blog.

Review: LUSH The Sound Bath Spa Treatment

Do you ever just hit a rut in your life and feel like you need something to clear away all the uncertainty and confusion in your head, so you can think clearly again? That's exactly how I was feeling on the days leading up to booking my Sound Bath spa treatment. I felt sad and foggy, like every day was the same and I was too tired to even think about making any changes.

I thought back to how carefree and uplifted I felt after my The Comforter? spa treatment at LUSH Leeds, and decided it was finally time to use one of the spa vouchers I have been hoarding since Christmas.

I emailed the LUSH Leeds spare to book a double room to share with my best friend, Em, and we decided on The Sound Bath due to it being her first ever spa treatment. Whilst I was researching treatments I stumbled across the most incredible article on The Sound Bath, which cemented my decision to book it right away. 

So what did I think to my Sound Bath experience? I've split this review up into three parts in order to accurately express my feelings and emotions during every step of the treatment. Spoilers ahead!

Before

Due to an accident on the motorway, we were 8 minutes into our 10 minute grace period for lateness when we finally got to LUSH Leeds Spa. Sweaty and stressed, we were lead downstairs into the country kitchen where everything just... stopped.

As soon as the door to the spa closed, an air of serenity settled around me. It was as if all the stress and rush of the city had been blocked out in a instant as we were settled down at the big kitchen table with our beautiful therapists, Beth and Megan. 

Beth and Megan explained the overall purpose of the treatment to us and how it was designed to open our minds and remove toxins from the body via sound vibrating through our heart chakras (the one that influences balance, calmness and serenity) and massage of the crown chakra (our state of consciousness and awareness of the universe.)

We were then presented with our ‘box of wonder’ - a small square crate from which wisps of smoke were gently pooling. Upon opening the box, we found inside two mushrooms with the words ‘eat me’ and two bottles labelled ‘drink me’ nestled on a soft bed of green moss. It was as if we were entering the world of Alice in Wonderland. Megan explained how the raw cacao mushrooms and apple and elderflower ‘shots’ were natural mood boosters and would open our heart and crown chakras to prepare us for our sound therapy session. 

They also showed us the ear candles that would be used in the treatment and assured us that they were safe and wouldn’t wouldn’t pull any substance in (our out of) our ears. I really appreciated this, as it was the part of the treatment I was the most nervous about. 

We were shown to our double treatment room and asked to remove our shoes and any jewellery that would get in the way. We were also invited to remove any other items of clothing if it would help us to get more comfortable in the beds, but it wasn’t required for the treatment. The accompanying CD was playing the most serene track of goat bells, mixed with the sounds of bumblebees cheerfully zipping around, as of we were laying in a meadow. 

Once we were settled snugly in the treatment beds I rang a little bell to let Beth and Megan know we were ready to begin.

During

Our Sound Bath treatment began with ‘grounding’ us to the space we were in. Pressure was slowly applied to each of my limbs in the same way a cat would pad its feet on you before settling, and Megan blew incense over me before holding the tuning forks over my ears. 

I was strapped onto the pillow (but not in a scary straight-jacket way, in a super-soft headband kind of way) and my first facial massage began. Using Jojoba oil, Megan squished my face into all kinds of funky positions, drawing all the tension out of my cheeks and jaw. She then used two comfortably hot stones to massage the oil into my face. It was the most luxurious feeling, and sent a tingle down my spine every time the hot stones passed around my eyes. 

Next she placed a buzzing tuning fork on my chest, directly above where the heart chakra is and applied a little pressure. It was a strange feeling that I could feel vibrating throughout my entire body, and didn’t last as long as I would have liked it to. I found that to be a reoccurring theme with the tuning forks - they tended to ‘run out’ quicker than I felt they should have done. 

I then had the tuning forks placed over my temples, cheeks, forehead and behind my ears in turn. Before being placed, each facial part was gently stroked so I unconsciously knew to prepare for the ‘buzz’ that followed. Feeling them behind my ears was the strangest experience, but felt absolutely incredible (and was definitely a minor turn-on, sorry Megan.) 

Megan then gently whispered in my ear, asking me to turn onto whichever side was the most comfortable for me. Once I turned over, a Hopi candle was gently placed into my ear and lit, causing a crackling sound and warming sensation to travel deep into my ear. It felt exactly like lying next to a roaring log fire, with an instant feeling of relief once removed. I’d like to think it was the feeling of ‘toxins being drawn out’ but it was most likely ear sweat. Either way I really enjoyed it. 

Up next was the scalp massage. Our therapists had briefly mentioned that the scalp massage would be more intense than any other we may have had before, but I was not prepared for anything as vigorous as what I received. I love my hair being played with anyway, and it was fantastic to have a thorough scalp treatment, even if it did feel a little too hard at certain times. 

Finally I had a second facial massage with another hit of incense blown over me. I originally thought that the hot stones were the height of luxury - they were nothing compared to the feeling of the cold stones being run over my face. On such a hot, humid day it was absolute bliss and I did not want it to end. 

Unfortunately all good things come to an end and my The Sound Bath treatment ended with once again being grounded in the cat-like way from the beginning before Megan whispered that my treatment had finished, and we could take as long as we needed to relax and readjust before joining them in the kitchen for a cup of tea.

After

Immediately after sitting up, I noticed how much more energised and alert I was feeling. Whilst The Comforter? had placed me into a dreamy trance, The Sound Bath has awakened me, and everything felt much clearer. Em stated how her sinuses felt much better, and the treatment had definitely soothed her allergies and hay fever. My hearing had become incredibly heightened, like a little fox. The ear candles had definitely worked a treat!

A pot of tea each was waiting for us when we returned to the cosy kitchen, and Beth said we could take as long as we needed to relax and enjoy the tea before returning to the bustle of the outside world. She advised us not to eat too much dairy, drink any alcohol or submerge our ears in water for the next 24 hours, as we had been purified of toxins.

Overall I really enjoyed my Sound Bath treatment, but it didn’t have the same lasting effects as The Comforter? did, and I didn’t find it quite as enchanting either. I did absolutely love how it was a very green, ‘witchy’ treatment, what with talk of chakras and the Earth goddess inspired soundtrack and theme (including the box of wonder) but I’m not sure if any of it did anything. For example, a scrub and body serum is a physical thing that you can feel the effects of, whilst musical prongs being held by your ears doesn’t really have an after effect that can be measured. 

Another thing I noticed with The Sound Bath treatment was that I was definitely more aware of what was happening when compared to The Comforter. I picked up on each and every sound and movement the therapists made, as opposed to just drifting off and listening to the soundtrack. With all the different sounds and sensations in the room, I barely noticed the CD was on at all, yet at the same time it provided the perfect background ‘noise’ to complement the treatment. 

All in all, The Sound Bath spa treatment promised to be deeply immersive (very) and relaxing (not quite) whilst awakening the senses, which it definitely accomplished. I don’t think it would be my first choice to try again, but I’m glad to have experienced it for myself. 

Have you tried this energising LUSH Spa treatment?
What did you make of it?

Review: LUSH Tender Is The Night Bath Bomb

To celebrate the 30 year anniversary of the bath bomb, LUSH decided to release 54 new bath bombs online and in selected stores. These bath bombs were previously exclusive to the Harajuku store in Japan, so it was incredibly exciting to have so many new goodies to try at once.

I've been pacing myself by only ordering three new bombs at a time, but up until now I had been underwhelmed with the ones I had tried.  So what did I make of Tender Is The Night bath bomb?

Initially, my thoughts weren't good. Despite being an average sized bomb, Tender Is The Night has a price tag of £5.95, a whole £2 more than it's equivalent sized friends. Usually I would make a point about certain bath bombs containing luxury oils which contribute to the price, however after checking the ingredients list, it really doesn't differ wildly from Sex Bomb.

Both bombs feature Ylang Ylang and Jasmine as the main ingredients, with the only real difference being that Tender Is The Night contains Vanilla Absolute instead of Clary Sage. A slight annoyance, especially considering all the recent price hikes at LUSH are resulting in a single bath edging towards the £10 mark when you factor in a bath bomb and a chunk of bubble bar. (But that's a rant for another time.)
In bomb form, Tender Is The Night doesn't really look like much. It's a simple spherical ballistic in a pale candy-pink shade, with stripes of white running through it. It's delicate and pretty, but doesn't scream "pick me!" when you compare it to the rest of the bombs available. If I wasn't such a sucker for anything pink, I probably wouldn't have chosen Tender Is The Night to try at all.

As you can imagine from the ingredients I mentioned above, TITN (effort to write it out again so many times!) is a powdery sweet bomb with a little hit of vanilla. To describe it, I would say Sex Bomb and Silky Underwear mixed together and dipped in chocolate. The jasmine is nowhere near as strong in TITN as it is in Sex Bomb, but it instead supplies a deliciously powdery base note which is sweetened by the Ylang Ylang to create a sultry yet gentle scent. It very much reminds me of vintage pin-up girls with their hair in soft curls whilst lounging in satin pink lingerie. Innocent, yet provocative all at the same time. 
Popping it into the water, I was actually shook at how much of a dark horse this bath bomb is. Whilst I was expecting a quick fizz of pale pink, a soft dark pink foam began to froth off the sides of the bomb. It was like soft seafoam, very thick and totally luxurious, almost as if I'd used a bubble bar. The bath slowly started to fill with swirls of pink and white as the bomb fizzed on, leaving milky pink water behind in it's wake. It was toally gorgeous, and I couldn't resist getting in before the bomb had even finished its show.

Once out of the bath, the delightful scent gentle lingered on my skin all night. It was such a dream to pull on silky pyjamas and wrap myself up in fresh bed sheets after using this bomb, living out my pin-up girl fantasies.
Tender Is The Night bath bomb also shares it's sexy/gentle scent with Tender Is The Night massage bar (who'd have known.) I have never tried the massage bar myself due to viewing it as a bit basic, but after using TITN bomb I am absolute dying to have a full pamper night featuring the bomb, massage bar, and Sex Bomb shower gel (which I have just ordered from the new Community favourites launch.)

Overall, I am pleased with this bath bomb. I'm not too keen on the price, which is the only thing stopping me from 'stocking up' on it. However I was pleasantly surprised and will definitely be grabbing one every so often as a special treat. It may even replace Sex Bomb as my favourite girly bath.

Have you tried any of the new Harajuku bombs?

A Bittersweet 'Goodbye'


I've not really been around here much, have I?

Not for a long while really, and putting off writing this post was only delaying the inevitable. What's the point in a 'goodbye' post when I've been gone for such a long time anyway? But I believe in tying up loose ends and putting things down in writing, rather than just ghosting. After almost five years online, I owe it to myself and this blog to be honest with my intentions.

Let me explain; 

I first started this blog so many years ago because I was lonely and very sad. I'd just been dumped by my boyfriend at the time, and I was struggling badly with depression and low self-esteem. I didn't have any real friends and had been cast out of the 'in' clique at school as a response to the break up. So I started a blog, which I named 'Confessions Of A Teenage Shopaholic', a nod to my favourite book and carefree spending habits. It then eventually morphed into 'Dainty Alice' as I learned more about branding, web design and photography, portraying myself as grown-up, shy and delicate, with a love for all things pink and pretty. The way I wanted to be seen, the way I wanted to be, as opposed to a tall, loud-mouthed young girl from a small East Midlands town.

My blog became a glorious outlet, where I would write about my shopping sprees and review hair, makeup and skincare goodies to my heart's content. I discovered Twitter and the ways of getting my blog into the public eye, whilst being re-tweeted by the brands I started to work with. I spent hours scheduling tweets, writing posts, taking and editing photos, all as a wonderful, colourful distraction from the greyness inside my own mind. It felt wonderful. I felt important. My social followings grew rapidly and vastly as I played follow-for-follow games and took part in comment swaps and blogger chats night after night.

It often made me feel bad too. When a post didn't get as many views and comments as I hoped for, I would stay up late 'promoting' it across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I tried to write a new post every day, waking up at silly times to make sure I had it finished in time for my own deadlines and beating myself up when I didn't. All this whilst preparing for A Levels and figuring out what I wanted to do when I left school put a huge amount of pressure on me, but I thrived off the buzz of recognition and approval I was getting. It made me happy, in a time where nothing else really did.

But like all good things, it eventually came to an end. I started a full time job which was a big jump from my lazy half-days at sixth form. At first it was wonderful, having a proper income to spend on bigger and better sprees, but after a few months of frantically typing posts in my lunch break, the shine was wearing off. I was too tired for promotion in the evenings, and I'd missed the daylight hours for taking photos by the time I finished work. It had also started to hit home just how much money I was spending on beauty products - £100 hauls every month on Too Faced and Benefit, despite the fact that I was no longer wearing makeup on a daily basis. My palettes and products ended up going unused for weeks after they were initially bought and reviewed.

Eventually, I just let myself slow down. A few posts popped up each month, moving away from makeup and more towards my current niche of LUSH products. After a year, I cancelled my 'Dainty Alice' domain name and set up a LUSH Instagram account instead, where I remain posting photos most days, and this blog has been left to gather dust in its wake.

The happy-sad, bittersweet fact of the matter is that I don't need it anymore. I don't need to blog to be happy. I am finally starting to become truly content with my life and the way it's heading. I'm starting to like myself a little bit more each day. I like the colour of my eyes and how long my hair is getting. I like wearing pastel coloured clothes that fit me perfectly, despite being three or four sizes larger than they were a few years ago. I have a wonderful fiance, who I much prefer spending my evenings and weekends with, compared to holing myself up in my bedroom writing about lipstick only a few short years ago.

This isn't goodbye, not really. It's a 'bye for now'. An 'until we meet again'. But it is an official admittance that I no longer have the time or commitment required for running a 'proper' blog. Hopefully in a few months I'll be able to dust it off and pick back up where I left off. Maybe with another new name, another identity. But for now, I'll be content with posting on Instagram and saving my spare time for pursuits that mean a lot more to me than just 'likes'.

Au revoir, Wonderlush, and until we meet again, my dear friend.

Review: LUSH Aubergine Bath Bomb

LUSH has been causing a stir recently with their latest release of Valentine’s Day themed bath and body goodies. A saucier collection than we’ve seen in previous years, the star attraction is a big, purple, rather phallic-looking bath bomb by the name of Aubergine (also known as Eggplant in the US.)

Naturally, everyone has gone totally berserk for this naughty, pop-culture inspired bomb. We’ve had articles advising against the use of Aubergine as a sex toy (courtesy of hard-hitting news outlets, LADbible and Cosmopolitan) and the LUSH community has gone wild since discovering that Aubergine shares it’s scent with the cult favourite, 29 High Street perfume.

When it comes to bath bombs, size really does matter, so I’m pleased to report that Aubergine will guarantee satisfaction. Bigger than the palm of my hand, the £3.95 price tag is more than justified with a sizeable bath bomb that won’t leave you wanting more.

In bomb form, Aubergine is a mid to dark purple colour, with bright green leaves at the top (tip?) of the bomb. It’s flat on the underside, whilst the top of the bomb is softly curved, to echo the shape of both the emoji and the actual vegetable. It’s pretty difficult to photograph this bath bomb due to the size (generous) and shape (girthy), with the added risk of all images looking a little NSFW.

As mentioned in the introduction to this post, Aubergine just so happens to be 29 High Street scented. A lot of thought was clearly put into the concept and design of this bomb, and adding this exclusive scent really is the cherry on top.

If you’ve never experienced the 29 High Street scent family before (the perfume is only available in Poole) you’ll still find it comfortingly familiar. In short, it’s the smell of a LUSH store, captured and bottled in one perfect perfume. If you’ve ever hunted down a LUSH store in a shopping centre based off scent alone, then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s sweet, sultry, woodsy and sexy all at the same time, with top notes of bergamot, ho wood and tonka.

Saving the best for last, the bath art that Aubergine produces is absolutely spectacular. If you’ve made it this far into the review, I’m sure you will have noticed the stunning photos that I’ve included of the show it puts on.

Swirling perfectly on its own without need for stimulation, shades of purple, green and blue are released frothing into the water. Once the outer purple layer fizzes away, a torrent of blue foam spews from the thicker end of the bomb, while threads of almost neon green shoot out (ok, I’ve gone too far this time) from the opposite end.
Despite being described as a ‘fast-fizzing tip’, I found that Aubergine was actually a slow fizzer for the amount of bath art it produced. Checking the timestamps from my camera roll, the passionate act lasted at least 10 minutes, from the point of entry, until I got bored and finished it by hand with a quick squeeze. (I’ll show myself out.)

The final bath water was a magical, deep sparkly purple, much darker than Monster's Ball or Plum Pudding bath melt. Scented gloriously, I stayed in that bath for almost two hours, which is a huge achievement for me. Afterwards, my skin felt so silky and soft from the fresh aubergine extract, and I could smell 29HS on me for hours afterwards.

Overall, LUSH have really spoiled us with this delicious Valentine's Day release. I think it's probably my new favourite ever bath bomb (RIP Sex Bomb) and I'm very glad that I've massively stocked up on these to last me throughout the year.

Have you tried this cheeky treat?