Thursday, 12 July 2007

Quitting aid test: Shameless pampering

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

1 comment:

Nik said...

I never owned a bottle of Febreze until I moved into the Bar Steward's room following Dodge's departure.

Holy herrings going to hell in a handbasket!

The place smelled like there were three kippers stuffed behind the radiator and a pork chop hidden in an Oxo tin at the back of the top shelf (ask Ali how that smells after I went to his place drunk one night! :) Also caused major argument between Ali and Duncs after Ali accused Duncs of eating his pork chop! I'd like to say I feel bad about about the situation, but, frankly, I feel quite proud!).

I had to Febreze everything. The walls, the bed, the curtains, the floor, the windows, the TV, the filing cabinet, the lamp shade, everything, and worse than that, I had to do it three times over the course of a week with the windows left wide open and the ladies coming in to clean it daily!

Febreze: hate it or dislike it, you can't help but employ it in the on-going war against unpleasant odours.