The Non-Essentials

Non-Essential [non·ee·sen·ti·al] noun - a thing (more often than not a beauty related item) that is in essence absolutely unnecessary, usually purse weepingly expensive but makes us feel, look or smell puuurty and therefore we wish to possess. An additional extra that when bolted onto a regime makes the world of difference in our eyes, but nought to others. Ex) The Diptyque Figuier Candle is the epitome of a non-essential but allows me to have the cleansing scent of Space NK in my own home which therefore makes it a justified purchase. Now onto the rest…

Bathtime is probably the most non-essential filled beauty sport there is; after all, the product ends up being glugged down the drain but there’s something about the ritual of sewing salts in your bath that just makes the relief that little bit better when you lower into your tub. Bubbles are out, salts are in and the Therapie Himalayan Detox Salts are top of my ‘special occassion’ pamper pile. Pricey mind, at £35 from Cult Beauty, but after a pre-bedtime soak the other day I slept through the night without one toss or turn and spent the following morning suspiciously eying up this pot of salts pondering what wonderous stuff it contained. Lavender, lemongrass and powdered amethyst if you were wondering.

Face masks are a particular forte of mine, but alas serve up a pretty small section in my routine each week; applied once or twice if they’re lucky for 10 minutes max before they too wave goodbye down the plughole. They’re something I like to go mid-range on, but the OSKIA Renaissance Mask tips over that limit at £48.50 for the full-size from Oskia. Ouch. It brings it with plumped up, juicy looking skin after just one go and I promise my love for it has nothing to do with the fact it changes colour on application. But this one just slips into the non-essential category as there’s a tonne of miracle masks out there that perform a near enough identical task – REN Glycolatic Radiance Renewal Mask, I’m looking at you.

Next a tool that provokes a more often than not, a hilarious conversation with anyone who enters my bathroom and spots it hanging out with my skincare stash. “What the hell is that?” is the frequent enquiry, “a Ying Yu Jade Facial Roller* of course”, I retort. Dur. Another piece of Cult Beauty booty and £25, it’s billed as a gym workout for the face and claims to mix the healing properties of jade with gentle massage aiding the bodies drainage organs. I do have to admit after a long day, or even a good cry (tried and tested baby) there’s nothing better than a quick roller of this on the ol’ eye bags. But feel free to give this one a miss if you’re satisfied with two cold spoons from the fridge as a sore eye solution.

The priciest foundation in my stash – that’s easy, Tom Ford’s Traceless Foundation* and at £60 that’s an amount that even beats Chantecaille’s Just Skin. Woah. I would never even reach to swatch a stick foundation at a counter but a quick demo at a TF makeover showed just how versatile this stuff is. Sheered out over a well moisturised base with a brush gives just the right veil of everyday coverage or applied directly from the bullet ramps up it’s flawless-isfying power. I actually like using this as a concealer – it was the only thing I reached for when a ripe blemish erupted last week, but alas it’s expensive and therefore deemed a non essential reserved to be added to Christmas lists and your basket in moments of madness only.

The long and short of it – you want them? Yes. You need them? No. Story of my life – but that’s half the fun I guess. Now lets all just erase this post from our memories, archive for payday if you can’t shake it off and higher priority beauty programming will resume tomorrow. 8am, be there or be square. 

*PR Sample


  • a facial roller – how neat!

  • Oleta

    I think £60 for a foundation is the most expensive I’ve ever seen! I buy stuff all the time that I don’t need but like you said that’s half the fun! xx

  • Michelle

    Hey, Anna! I’ve been following your blog for quite a while but never left a comment. I wonder if you could do a review of the jade roller any time? I’d been wanting one for a while and then ordered one some time after I saw it in you bathroom tour video (I guess it was that one anyway). I’m very pleased with my purchase but still haven’t got a routine yet. How do you use it and before/after which products?
    Ps.: your blog and channel are one of my top favourites!

  • In Primark I scoff at pay £13 for a dress yet in my head it is perfectly reasonable to pay £60 for a foundation because it’s by Tom Ford!

    Lottie x

  • lilypebbles

    I bloody love this. x

  • Maddy Cane

    They but non-essential but they make our lives so much better! xxx


  • Amy

    The Body Shop does a similar facial roller product, it doesn’t look as fancy as that one though and it has like a dotty texture to it (an awful explanation haha) but yeh, I have that and it’s quite nice 🙂

    Amy x

    A Little Boat Sailing

  • Kerry

    😮 wow ! it’s the first time i’ve seen a jade facial roller featured by a blogger! in fact, not many caucasians use it. my mom (we’re chinese) owns one as well and she uses it to roll on her cheeks and temples whenever she’s reading the newspaper or something. the little tool has thousands of years of history, the chinese royalties (esp the ladies) used to use them exquisitely for leisure 🙂

  • Lauran Annison

    I love this post and your blog in general!

    Much Love,

  • Annie Wood

    So true 😀 x

  • Amysbeautyjournal

    Love this! You’re an amazing blogger x

    Amy |

  • Sarah

    Anna, you should be an editor (if you’re not already!) Your blog has one of the best structures out there and your content is always, always interesting and coherent. One of my new faves x

  • This post is brilliant! I absolutely love the way you write! x

  • I need a facial roller!



  • jocelyn lam

    OMG I’ve been eyeing the facial roller for ages! please do a review!

  • yanksgurl613

    love this post! you are so quirky and humorous! I have plenty of items like these! xx. gigi. food and beauty blogger @

  • Rebecca-Louise Murray

    Hahaa love this post!

  • Strawbry_Blonde

    Wonderful post and amazingly written – you are fabulous! x

  • Manuela Dumitru

    Hi Ana. Do you still use your jade roller? Any good?? Thanks! Xx