Vegan Pampering at Skinfull Affairs in Dublin

As vegans, we often deal with stressful situations in our daily lives; omnis giving us hassle, tummy grumbles while picking over a pitiful lettuce salad, militant vegans calling for death to all humans on Facebook groups. Basically, a lot of the time we need to take a chill pill. We need a mojito and a spa day.

Well, the mojito should be fairly easy to get, but a spa day seems impossible right? Many spas and salons offer relaxing treatments, but how many of them offer vegan products and treatments? How many are even cruelty free??

Worry no more, because a salon offering vegan friendly treatments recently opened in Ireland. Yes, Ireland. You read that right. Called Skinfull Affairs, it’s based just off South William Street in Dublin and not only offers vegan eyelash and eyebrow tints, vegan friendly massages and facials, but also vegan manicures so you can walk around with beautiful nails knowing full well that they’re cruelty free.

I was really excited when I found out the salon, so when my birthday came around I decided to treat myself. I booked an appointment for an express facial, a back, neck and shoulder massage, and a file and polish. All for €70! As someone who has paid that much in the past for just a massage, I think it was a brilliant deal, especially because it was all vegan friendly. Just make sure to tell the girl at the desk when you arrive!

skinfull affairs

When I arrived for my appointment, the lady at the desk got me to fill out a form on the salon’s tablet to make sure they knew about any conditions / allergies I had etc. I was offered some cucumber water while I filled it out, and although I was a little worried bout dropping and breaking the iPad, it was nice that the salon was particular about knowing about any issues I had.

The decor in the salon is so unique. There’s lots of plants and wood and a big neon green sign that says ‘Skinfull Affairs’ above the nail area. There’s also a huge wall of products of all kinds (even lubricants!) and a comfy looking chair that’s exclusively for things like threading. Also, all the products that are suitable for vegans have an ‘I’M VEGAN’ sticker on them. Woo!

Anyway, after I filled out the form I was taken downstairs to the treatment area, which was clean and modern and nicely heated. I was left to undress and wrap myself in a towel before letting the lady know I was ready and set up on the table. The massage was lovely (it’s been a while since I had one!) and you couldn’t hear anything of what was happening upstairs on the shop floor, which was great. The music, too, was very calming, though there is a slight pause between tracks that’s a little distracting, but it’s not a big thing.

The facial began basically as soon as the massage finished. I was asked to turn over and I was made comfortable with a rolled towel under my feet and one under my head as well. Overall it was very relaxing and lasted a lot longer than I thought it would for an “express” facial.

skinfull affairs

Afterwards, I was told to take my time getting dressed and ready, so I did, and I took a few pictures of the treatment room for this post while I was at it. There is a sign in the room encouraging this anyway! When I came upstairs, the nail station was laid out and I was told to pick a colour from the nail polishes lined up on the wall. There was a HUGE range of polishes in every colour from Ella + Mila. After a lot of deliberation, I went for a green teal colour, which was so shiny and just gorgeous. I wanted to buy it but it’s €15 per bottle which is very expensive, so I left it (though I believe there’s a deal on at the moment where if you buy a manicure you get 10% off nail polish purchases).

While getting my nails done, I spoke to the lady who works there about the products lining the walls. There was so much there, I could’ve stayed an hour just looking through it all. In the end, I chose a moisturiser and hand cream from Dr Konopka, a little known vegan skincare brand from Estonia I believe. It’s been a month since I first tried the products and I can officially say that they are very high quality (full review coming soon!) and I actually bought more products from the brand when I was in Dublin again recently.

As for the staff, they were so lovely. The girl who took care of me was very pleasant and helpful and answered any questions I had about any product. She was really knowledgeable and was able to recommend products from Skinfull’s shelves to match my skin type. I was so happy with my experience, I just can’t praise it enough.

Overall, if you’re looking to treat yourself or the vegan in your life, choose Skinfull. This isn’t an ad or anything, I’m just so happy that vegan-friendly products and experiences are becoming mainstream and easier to find, plus my whole experience was wonderful and really made my birthday.

Have you been to Skinfull Affairs before? What did you think? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

What Is Veganism?

It seems like an incredibly obvious first step but I haven’t yet addressed what veganism is exactly. I was clearly too busy rambling!

veganism

So what is veganism? 

There are many reasons why people choose to embrace a plant-based, cruelty free lifestyle, but first I’d like to make a distinction. Being a vegan isn’t just about eating vegan food, it’s also about trying to cause the least amount of suffering possible.

That means rejecting products (like makeup and skincare brands, for example) that don’t adhere to a cruelty-free policy. It means thinking consciously and making ethical decisions in regards to everything in your life, from the shoes on your feet to the dye in your hair to buying a car with seats that aren’t leather.

veganism

It’s up to each individual vegan to determine their own ethical boundaries; for instance, some vegans may not mind consuming animal derivatives in products as long as they’re not eating meat/dairy/eggs directly, but many vegans do not consume any derivatives at all. Nobody is perfect, but the goal is to try our best to live ethically. 

Personally, I don’t eat meat/eggs/dairy/honey and I also don’t consume products with animal derivatives in them. I don’t buy or use products with animal derivatives in them nor products tested on animals. I’m currently working on using up the rest of the cleaning products around my house so that when they’re used up I can buy ethical brands, but it’s incredibly difficult (and very expensive) to overhaul all the non-vegan products in your life overnight. In fact I’d go as far as to say it’s impossible for most people. Veganism doesn’t happen overnight. The decision does, sure, but in practice it is tricky.

veganism

Another point of contention between vegans is that some (like myself) will use a product that has already been bought (before going vegan) until it’s used up or rips rather than throwing it out. As someone who cares about the environment, it’s very wasteful.

Another example is a pair of leather boots that you may have worn for years. I personally think it’s fine to continue wearing those until they’re not fit for purpose, and then they can be thrown out. As long as you don’t continue to buy leather/products using animal skin then I think that’s fine. But it’s up to you. Draw your own line.

If you have any questions or if I’ve missed something, please let me know in the comments!

Vegan Favourites – May 2016 (PitRok Deodorant, Irish Chocolates)

As I became a vegan relatively recently, I’ve been picking up loads of vegan products and foods to try out. I came across plenty of good products this month and in this video I talk about 5 of my favourites! I talk about chocolates, some beauty products and a few other cruelty free and miscellaneous items.

Other than what I talk about in the video, I’ve also been really loving Sukin skincare products (which you can get from naturisimo.com or Holland and Barrett) and the Foods of Athenry biscuits.

What are your favourites for May 2016? Let me know in the comments!