Since I stopped sucking on nicotine’s cold hard kiss, I’ve felt fucking dreadful. I’ve got a spot breakout threatening to devour the universe and a throat that hasn’t felt so unloved since I last attempted to hit top G.
Free makeovers, the usual cheer-up mechanism that isn’t chocolate, are a tricky field to navigate. If you need to feel good, you’re pretty much guaranteed to come out glowing like a nuclear satsuma or eyebrows modelled on Rosa Klebb, whereas if you’re not bothered then swanking down a street without any plans has never felt so divine. From the pallid miserable thing that greeted me in the mirror last Wednesday morning, it’s clear that a trip to Mac isn’t going to solve anything, which is why I’m currently thanking the God of Hotmail that I caught an invitation to a Febreze launch and free facial at the Berkeley hotel for that day (tenuous reasoning: Febreze masks smells, therefore smoke and therefore ex-smoke).
My face was peeled, masked, cleansed, toned, serum’d and moisturised. I glowed, not like a bionic fruit, but like someone who’s just been pampered and product-place-preached at to within an inch of her life. I floated down to the Febreze presentation with their PR, grinning like someone who’s bathed in orgasms, grabbed a smoothie, and then noticed that the entire room had been paved with Astroturf and the ratio of PRs to me was high enough to ensure rave reviews at OFSTED.
“It’s all about natural scents,” said the blonde PR, brandishing a bottle of something blue and explaining why there were paper flowers all over the fake grass. “Febreze has combined air freshener with neutraliser to make something that you’d actually want to spray in your room, and it gets rid of the hardest smells.”I don’t know about you, but Febreze, despite smelling like a clinically bleached armpit, was my right-hand man throughout university. I didn’t know a single student cliché who didn’t have a bottle squirrelled away somewhere to waft around manically when your parents visited.
This is where the dreamy bliss I’d developed post-facial started to evaporate. The PR took a little bottle off the table and put a few drops of liquid on it. Even without sniffing it directly I could tell it had come from a fish with BO issues, but I had to sniff it directly, as I generally say yes to anything when I’m in a luscious hotel being spoiled.
I was handed over to PRs 3, 4 and 5, who I half-expected to go into their dance but instead strapped my hand into something metallic to measure my stress levels. They then lowered a paper maché ball over my head and wafted in the fish BO without warning. My stress levels went fucking ballistic. Then they sprayed in the Febreze. Rather than smelling of actual Febreze, which would probably have served only to make me taciocardic, a nice calm smell of cotton promptly took all the fish out.
So now I have a lovely skin, I didn’t really want to go around putting smoke in my pores. I didn’t touch my face for hours after I got home in case I dislodged an enzyme. Even better, I got a nice goodie bag of Febreze things to take home with me and our flat smells of nothing horrible which is the biggest stress-reliever there is.
Quitting score: 7/10