Mama Mia: Zoe Foster leaves the gang

Oh wow. As gutted as I am that Zoe will no longer be writing for Australian lifestyle site Mama Mia, I’m delighted that she has kindly written a final piece that rounds up every single one of her beauty posts! It’s a merry feast of brilliant, witty and honest beauty advice that every girl should read.

Click on the image of Zoe below to lap it all up.

The story of my brows – part one

I have always been obsessed with my eyebrows. I think this obsession developed when I was as young as nine or ten years old; I realised that they were huge in comparison to my friends’ and also, flicked up at the ends so that I looked like some sort of devil-child or Italian soprano! I can remember my mum coming to pick me up from a friend’s house and her mum making a comment about how the way my eyebrows flicked up at the ends was a real reflection of my personality. What? I didn’t understand that at the time and I’m not sure I do now either! But someone else noticing my crazy brows, and pointing them out, made me hate them even more. I developed a habit of constantly trying to flick the ends back down again.

Natural brows. Excuse the quality – you’ll appreciate that I don’t have the original! Witness the flicked up ends.

When I was about 11 my mum finally agreed to take me to have my brows professionally shaped. This was a really great thing. The lady took very little off but just made them look much more tidy. The idea was that I would then continue to keep them tidy myself. Big mistake. Huge. Eleven-year-olds should not be let loose with a pair of tweezers. I think I kept the new tidy eyebrows for a few months, and then when I came to do it myself, we were on holiday in Cornwall. The reason this is significant is because we were staying in a caravan and I shut myself in the little bedroom, which had very little light, and pluck-plucked away. You know the scenario – I did one side and then needed to even up the other side, then did too much there and have to do the other side again. I can remember emerging from that little room and my mum’s dismay at what I had done. From then onwards, and throughout my teens, I continued to obsess, tearing images out of magazines to copy, and settled on what I thought was the loveliest brow shape. In a bid to achieve higher arches I took too much away from the middle of my brows, giving them a rounded shape. They were also very thin.

Thin brows from my teenage years to mid-twenties.

My moment of realisation and subsequent eyebrow crisis then didn’t happen until very recently (my late 20s). About six months before my wedding day I decided to start trying to grow them back a little and go and see a professional. Of course, after about 16 years of abuse, the re-growth was sparse and patchy, plus I didn’t really leave them long enough to see any of their true shape coming back. When I went to see a professional, I opted for threading, something I hadn’t tried before. The lady had the best intentions, of course, but essentially just got rid of all that re-growth and shaped them back into the thin, rounded shape that they had been before! I got married with those brows, which, to be honest, is a shame.

It was a beautiful day and eyebrows were the last thing I was thinking about, but – here they are being thin and round.
Photo by the wonderful Sarah Bowerman.

This post is getting very long, so I’m going to stop here for now. Next time; the discovery of beauty blogs and, specifically, Zoe Foster and Lien Davies. You can read part two of my brow story here.

Packing light with Zoe Foster

I do realise I say this about all the people whose posts I save on here, but I LOVE THIS GIRL. I just really do. If you have even a small interest in beauty and products and make up then I strongly recommend you buy Zoe’s book, Amazing Face. It’s not available in the UK, but you can buy it here.

I love the videos that give a little insight into the blogger’s life, and these two are no exception. Not only that but when I recently visited my sister in Australia I lugged six, SIX toiletry and make up bags with me. So heavy. And potentially relationship busting when your husband has to carry your suitcase up and down train station staircases (while I happily skip along with his). So it’s a shame these videos didn’t come a month sooner.

Anyway, obviously, I now want the YSL nude gloss. And everything else.

By the way, while I was in Australia I bought the Covergirl eyeshadow primers Zoe recommends here, and I love them both. Brilliant under pretty much every eye shadow I own. (Might have mentioned that before). I also bought three tubes of Suvana paw paw and it is excellent. Genuinely better for lips (and everywhere else) than the Lucas Ointment version which contains petroleum – your skin can get addicted to this and stop producing it’s own oils – shock! (Having said that it’s very good for protecting cuticles when applying fake tan).

Over to Zoe:

What Zoe Foster packs in her toiletry bag

Zoe Foster takes us through her make up bag

The products that Zoe Foster really uses

I could probably list every one of Zoe Foster’s posts on here – I totally love the girl!

For now, here are two that I read while I was actually in Zoe’s homeland, Sydney. This meant I could run straight to the shops to buy her recommendations, hooray!

Zoe has written two posts on, sharing the products that she really rates and genuinely uses, you can read Part 1 here and Part 2 here.

I bought Revlon’s Colourburst Lip Butter in Tutti Frutti (available in the UK but bought it while I was away anyway) and Covergirl Intense Shadowblast in Brown Bling and Beige Blaze. I ADORE all of these, particularly the eyeshadows,  and have been wearing both shades lots.

The bronzer Zoe lists, and the lipstick/ stain/ gloss from YSL, are both on my wishlist until pay day!