Tag Archives: Sam Marshall

10 Things To Look Out For In A Perfect Facial

A decent facial can work wonders for your skin and also your stress levels!

Here are Sam’s top tips on what to look for during a first class facial treatment!

Consultation – this is often overlooked but a great consultation is vital to understand your skin’s needs. Your therapist should find out everything from how long you spend in the sun (ie are you an avid gardener) to how long you have to spend on your regime and what your goals are. They should listen and summarise what you want from the facial.

The Room – is it relaxing? Does it smell good?  Is it warm enough? Ambience is key to relaxation.  A heated bed is totally expected now, and the bed should be covered in layers of towels or blankets to wrap you up in once your body gets cooler.

Hygiene – a bugbear of mine is dirty hands – they should be washed in front of you! Fresh breath is also vital – I always pop a Smint in before going near anyone’s face.  It’s just curtesy.  Oh and clean towels -I don’t want to see tide marks from the lady before!

To chat or not to chat – sometimes I want to know what is going on my skin – sometimes I want to shut up and chill out. Your therapist should read this (or just ask you at the start).

The Cleanse – Just because it is a cleanse doesn’t mean it needs to be rushed. My cleanse is like a massage.  It should feel thorough but luxurious and if I have congestion around my nose they should focus on it (even if it is purely to make me feel like they listened). No area should be missed (ie sides of neck, and shoulders if they are going to massage as I don’t want dirty oil massaging into my lovely clean skin!). And never ever ever cover both nostrils. I would like to breathe without having to open my mouth.

Removal – yes this is important! I don’t want soggy cotton wool, or sponges that have been used on every client before me. (Remember hygiene…) Some aromatic warm clean mitts please. Every bit of my face should be covered – there is nothing worse than a bit of cleanser over your top lip or a load of exfoliant being massaged round your face afterwards.

The massage – and relax….. This should be in time to the music, very slow – firm on the right places, soft on the others.  Sweeping movements that seem flawless until you have no idea which hand is where. The best compliment for a therapist is a snoring client believe it or not.

Thou shalt not leave your client – during the mask. Ever.  And I want choices – a boring hand and arm massage is not for me, but extra time on my tense shoulders of a decent foot massage will get me coming back again and again. If I’m going straight home then a scalp massage with oil is simply divine.

Clean up – I don’t want to leave with a) mask up my nose, b) oil in my hair if I have requested otherwise, or c) a slick of over  applied moisturiser.

Aftercare – therapists seem to think we don’t want to buy! I love to be told by my hairdresser what will help my hair and my clients want to know what will improve their skin.

Don’t just throw us out of the door – tell me what I need, offer me some water and somewhere to “come round” and one of the nicest things I have had is my therapist calling me to see how my skin was a few days later.  Treatment plans are also lovely especially running up to something like a wedding.

Tomboy Beauty | How Much is too Much

As a total femme, and beauty therapist I LOVE beauty treatments, make up and anything that makes me look and feel better. But I like my girls to be, well, a kind of boys.

I like my partner to have natural (always bare) nails, no visible make up, and never EVER heels. However there are a few treatments I think tomboys can embrace.


My God brows are the absolute ultimate importance. I notice bad brows at a hundred paces, and they are all I can focus on. They frame your face – and they can be done very subtly (GuyBrows, I call them). So I can imagine most readers are sat there thinking “I have no idea if mine are good or not?”

There are a few simple rules to follow. Get to a mirror and find something with a straight edge to use as a guide….

Rule 1 Distance between brows – The start of each brow should be about in line with your tear ducts. Too far apart and you look odd. Someone said a “Lion face” once! Too close and we are in mono brow territory.

Rule 2 Taper Taper Taper – Thick to middle to thin. A gradual taper. No tadpoles, semi circles and jumps. Think natural and contoured.

Rule 3 The Arch – Look straight ahead and find the white triangle outside your iris. This is your safe zone. Draw a line up from here and that is where the highest part of your brow should sit.

Lash Tint

No you don’t have to look like you have mascara on. You can get a tint with brown or even light brown and just enhance your lashes subtly. It works and no one will know you have had them done!


A light spray tan to take the deathly white glow from your skin works wonders! Teeth and eyes appear whiter, skin healthier and more flawless, and let’s face it you always look slimmer with a tan. Gradual tans are a great option as you can build up the colour. Try Sun-Believable Gradual Tan in Medium.


Get a manicure or at least file and buff your nails regularly. When I say buff, yes you can get them to a glass like shine, but if you don’t fancy that then just miss out the shine bit! Try Trio Buffer and Crystal Nail file, both by Leighton Denny. No more biting, clipping or peeling. We want nice smooth snag free nails near our precious foof please . Don’t fancy a pedicure? See a Chiropodist – its more medical than beauty and a decent one can make your hooves look at least presentable and healthy.

Make up

You can still wear it whilst looking natural. Guys wear it on TV all the time, in fact on X Factor the male contestants had foundation, concealer, powder, contouring, brow gel and lip balm applied (Over their spray tans!)

  • Banish shine with a mattifying primer such as Benefit Professional
  • Conceal blemishes with a tinted moisturiser such as followed by a concealer such as Mac Studio
  • Finish SPF 35 Concealer (always make sure you get colour matched)
  • Or opt for a matt bronzer (no shimmer) such as Benefit Hoola
  • Brows can be kept in check with a brow gel such a Mac Brow Set in Clear
  • Clear mascara will make lashes look longer, healthy and glossy -try Miss Sporty Just Clear Mascara, or opt for a natural brown shade of any brand to enhance without drawing too much attention.
  • Keep lips kissable with a balm with minimal shine such as Burts Bees Lipbalm
  • So whatever your thing, you can still look groomed whilst retaining your natural beauty.

Coming Out – We Discuss with KitschMix Columnist Sam Marshall

Sam Marshall, the beauty Guru and columnist with KitschMix, talked openly with us about her life and the trials of coming out in small North Western town in the UK, as well as the challenges people face in Britain today regarding their sexual preference.

KitschMix: Where were you born and raised? 

Sam Marshall:I was born and raised in Bakewell in Derbyshire.  We lived in a beautiful house up a hill, away from anything except cows and sheep! I suppose I was fortunate – my parents had a successful clothes shop and I went to private school and had a pony! We always had loads of pets, and mum used to grow fruit and veg. It was fab.

KM: When did you first realise you were a lesbian? Did you tell anyone else about your feelings? 

SM: I “realised” I liked girls at 17. A boyfriend pointed out that I kept staring at a waitress I worked with.  I then remember going to Sheffield with a friend and kissing the only lesbian in the only gar bar there!

Looking back my bedroom wall was full of female pop stars and models with short hair – I think I only had one picture up of the man holding the baby!

I went to Sydney in 1999 and had my first “experience”. Very drunk, and she had a huge bush. Not very memorable!  Then came my first girlfriend – she was beautiful, quite boyish and, of course, still in love with her ex!

When I returned to the UK and told all my friends in Bakewell I was now “Gay”. The lads loved it; the girls said I was doing it for attention. At that time Bakewell didn’t even have anyone who wouldn’t have ticked “white British” if you know what I mean.

Needless to say I went back to boys due to the non-existence of lesbians (and much to the relief of my “it’s a phase” mother).

I moved to Manchester in 2001 and in 2004 started seeing a boy who worked on the doors in the Gay Village. We went out there a lot and I felt like a kid in a sweet shop! I didn’t know there were so many gay girls!  I never looked back.

I got civil partnered in 2010, now separated and we still remain friends. Mum totally accepts it and welcomed my ex like part of the family. My sister now says, “if you went back to boys I’d be sick”. Nice.

And the answer is no, I wouldn’t. I’m totally 100% gay.

KM: Have you experienced any discrimination or bad feeling from people because of your sexual persuasion?

SM: Only years ago in Bakewell saying it was for attention. I also had a rather “challenging” employee at Urban – a gay man who decided to try to make my life a living hell. He would tell my waxing clients I was gay, and shout “Dirty Dyke” across the shop floor. He didn’t work there for long after that!

Other than that even clients (after a while its inevitable they will ask about home stuff) that I was waxing were cool about it. I think if you make it an issue then it becomes one. This is normal for me now.

KM: What sorts of challenges do you think LGBT people face in Britain today?

SM: I think times are changing. My late granddad was quite homophobic, but when I told my Nan (his wife) she was like “Whatever makes you happy”. I think generations are dying off that had that negative mind-set. Also it helps that it is illegal to be homophobic -in the workplace it is seen as bullying. I do fear for my son (he has two mums and a dad), but I have friends with a 16yr old daughter who has never been teased or bullied over having two mums. After all most kids have single parent families, with mum’s new partner etc.

Most straight people like having a “gay best friend” – Madonna made that popular with Rupert Everett.  Every time a get speaking to a straight man they say “can we perve at girls together?”!

I think the Trans still get a hard time  – cross dressers especially.  People just stare and feel it ok to say out loud “is that a guy?” I treat a few trans clients and it really is such a brave thing to do. It easier for transsexuals as they don’t look “out of place” – I have witnessed one girl in Manchester (who is stunning by the way) being ogled by guys who have no idea the object of their attention probably has bigger tackle than them!  I suppose it’s about looking different that people don’t like.

It might help that I’m apparently “a lesbian disguised as a straight girl”. One of my exes was constantly called “Sir” in Indian Restaurants, and once asked if she was a girl or a boy!  My current partner looks (apparently) like a “good looking gay boy” and always gets hit on in the village by men until they spot her ample cleavage!  We have stereotypes in our head and things will naturally stand out.

Years ago men looked a certain way, and women did too. Now the lines are blurred.  Men wear make-up and women wear boxers!

Introducing The Beauty Guru, Sam Marshall

Brains, beauty and savvy business mind – Yes! Meet KitschMix’s new Beauty columnist Sam Marshall – the beauty Guru.

Sam has had an illustrious career managing Harvey Nichols’ Urban Retreat, working on X Factor, as well as working with the beauty industries leading mentors and brands. She is published journalist, and has featured on local and national TV and Radio, in the UK

Based in the Manchester, Sam currently runs her own beauty consultancy business; providing in-depth business advice, guidance, and training to other beauty professional and salons around the UK.

Oh, and she is also an out and proud lesbian, as well as full-time mother – and we at KitschMix are very happy to have her on-board.

“I’m a good all round beauty expert, and someone once referred to me as a “Beauty guru”… hence the name!”

Sam Marshall

KitschMix: Welcome to KitschMix. Let’s start with beauty – can you tell us how you got started in in the business?

Sam Marshall: My beauty career started when was 16. I attended a bitchy all girls’ school and I hated it. My parents wanted me to stay on but I was defiant and determined that I wouldn’t. So I enrolled myself at college to do Beauty.

Let’s just say, after spending thousands on my private education they weren’t too pleased with this choice, but I persevered, and now my Mum couldn’t be prouder.

I have Urban Retreat to thank for a lot of my knowledge. There, I was trained by industry leaders, and was given a free reign to do my own PR. I had some amazing mentoring from other managers and business coaches.

KM: When did you make the next step to start your own business?

SM: The beauty consultancy side happened by accident. I was going to salons and as soon as I walked through the door I saw opportunities. I can go into a business and see instantly what they are doing great, and just by asking a few questions I can work out what they can do to increase profit and productivity. It comes naturally to me. Also I am incredibly outspoken – I don’t hold back.

I now spend the majority of my time teaching intimate waxing (male and female!), and I offer salon business consultancy, where I can mentor on anything from how to set a room up to creating a business plan for a new venture.

I don’t do a huge amount of clients, so those who I see tend to be friends, family and referrals. The treatments I do are mostly waxing, brows and tanning.

KM: What is unusual or unique about your business, in comparison to others?

SM: I don’t know anyone else offering what I do – most freelance trainers have their own salon and freelance on the side. I don’t know of any specific beauty business consultants.

I’m lucky because I have such a varied week – I also sometimes do events where I spend the whole day chatting to people and painting nails – I have a rule that I never turn down work.

KM: Who are your typical clients?

SM: For training my clients are brands such as Leighton Denny, Regis and Outback Organics Wax. For business it is usually people I have trained who want to know more.  My home clients are just some of my regulars from Urban Retreat, friends of friends, and the odd celebrity J.

KM: Outside of work, what are your passions in life?

SM: Well I suppose my no 1 is my son. He is 3 and an absolute terror, but gorgeous all the same.

Beauty is my passion – but I’m not your usual “this will change your life” therapist. I’m realistic and sometimes blunt. But it seems to work for me.  I never tire of being pampered too – I could literally spend every day getting something done.

Cooking – I adore food, eating out. I think I have my father to thank as I always wanted to try things he had; snails at 8yrs old, then rare steak at 12. I also had a small stint as a chef whilst at college, which enabled me to learn so much. I try to cook a decent dinner once a week for me and my partner, Nat. I also bake with my son every week. I remember doing it with my mother as a child and I am determined he is going to grow up knowing how to cook a decent meal.

Customer Service – what has happened to it? I rarely see great customer service these days, something I am really passionate about in my work.

Health and fitness is my new(ish) passion – especially after having a child. I CARE what goes into his little body and try to eliminate junk and allergens as much as possible (we made coconut milk rice pudding last night with dates!).  I also go to the gym 3-4 times a week, I think on your 30’s you need to start trying a bit harder, and after using it to shift my pregnancy weight I got the bug. There’s nothing more satisfying than lifting more than the guy next to you. Must be my butch side coming out!

KM: What are your hopes for the future?

SM: I want to grow my brand, have another child (eventually), buy the house back I grew up in, grow old with my beautiful girlfriend, and just lead a positive, happy life. Cliché but true.

Need some advice on Beauty Technics, Tips and trends – Post a question for Sam Below in the comment section