I first met Mad’s a few years ago when she was out visiting my partner’s family.
She had been an exchange student in Australia in the early 2000’s, and hit it off with my partner’s sister Megan.
I had heard lots about this vivacious, funny swede, and was not disappointed when I finally got to meet her.
We bonded over a shared sense of humour and rap music, and the rest, as they say is history!
A red wine (and every now and then a Tom Collins), with Madelené Stenberg.
Full time dentist, and mommy to Selma the Jack Russell terrier.
There’s 4 dentist schools in Sweden and 3 different ways to get in: High marks from high school, high marks on a special test you can take for applying to all further studies or there’s an individual test just for dentist school.
So I didn’t have high marks from either school or the special test, so I was actually picked on the individual test.
There was a ten percent chance that I would get a spot.
So hey, I must be a little bit smart, emotionally stable (not so sure about that), know how to drill and make a good impression!
I don’t know how I pulled that off though since I thought the interview didn’t really go brilliantly.
There were two people interviewing me, and one of them was from Denmark.
I didn’t understand a thing so I had to ask the other interviewer to translate for me!
Which is good, as now I can provide all the things Selma needs.
And doesn’t need…
But actually needs….
If I’m not at work or lying on the sofa, I’m usually at the stables hanging out with Cosack the horse, doing agility courses with Selma, going to running or going to the gym.
But there’s a lot chilling on the sofa…
I don’t really know why Jess is asking me do this, since I actually don’t use a lot of make up and I don’t really have time to take care of my skin.
But maybe this is for all of you out there who need a simple way too.
Or have blonde hair that easily turns yellow.
Then I’m your girl!
How would you describe your skin?
Dry, like a Sauvignon Blanc!
I easily get clogged pores and flaky skin, including sexy reptile skin on my legs. Yay!
For you who doesn’t know Sweden, we have 4 seasons which are quite different from each other: Winter- dry and cold, Spring and Autumn- is like your Australian winter and then Summer, which can be quite humid and hot.
So my skin never gets to acclimatise.
What is your current everyday skin routine?
I don’t have that much time on my hands, it’s all about priorities and Selma always comes first.
Then Fredrik. ( My fiance)
Then the gym.
And somewhere at the bottom, my skin.
So even if my skin thinks it deserves to be treated like a queen, I never let that high maintenance bitch wrap me around her finger!
So since time is not on my side, lately I have been using Dermalogica’s Special cleansing gel-
Skin smoothing cream–
and Skin renewal booster–
I was told that the booster is like a serum, which really got me going.
ANYTHING that says it’s a serum or looks like a serum I’ll buy.
I’m like a moth to the flame with them!
They’re expensive, come in small luxurious bottles and have high concentrated good shit in them, so they have to be worth it right?
Anyway, Dermalogica is alright, sometimes is dries my skin out a bit.
So some nights I also use a facial oil as well as my facial cream and serum ( of course).
The facial oil I’m using at the moment is Dirty Works Facial Oil–
It’s really cheap but actually feels great.
It doesn’t stay on your skin for too long either, it soaks up in a minute or so. I like!
I have the same routine morning and night. Since I’m half dead at both times, I cannot handle too many products.
Talking about serums again, I even had a body lotion that contained serum Vichy Ideal Body Serum Lotion–
It took a bit to absorb, and I don’t really like rubbing my body for a long time, so I switched over to Vichy Ideal body Oil instead–
I love it, I just spray it on, quick rub and off you go!
It’s one of those dry oils, so it soaks up really quickly
You can get the same oil with some “gold” in it for a shimmering result. So maybe I’ll invest in that one later when I have a little bit of a tan.
What is your favourite beauty product at the moment?
An Enzyme Peel from Emma S–
A Swedish brand. Easy to use and you only need to use it for 1 minute 1 day a week. Amazeballs!
But since I only remember to use once a month I put it on for 4 minutes to compensate (only logical thing to do).
But it actually works wonders with getting all that old skin off your face. Watch out though, if you have a minor cut or something on your face or hands, that mother**ker will sting you like Odin’s ravens!
How often do you wash your hair? What do you use?
I have really fine blonde (after I colour it) hair, a lot of hair but no volume.
So, I wash my hair every second or third day.
On the second day I usually use dry shampoo to get it through the third day.
I use Bed Head Dry Shampoo–
It’s alright, but I’m not to fond of the smell if I’m going to be honest.
It smells like that pineapple lip balm you had when you were a teenager.
So I’ll probably switch as soon as the bottle gets empty. It’s a shame I bought the biggest bottle available…
Before blow drying my hair, I put Bed Head Small Talk in-
Which actually makes your hair thicker without giving you fatty roots.
I also use oil drops, Schwarzkopf G2B Oil-licious–
It’s low budget, but effective. I would say it’s as good as more expensive brands.
I put those two in wet hair, then blow-dry and voilà thick shiny hair!
My natural hair colour is, (No, not every swede is natural light blonde) what we call in Sweden “colour of a rat”.
You know that light gray-brown-blonde colour? Yuck!
To make it light silvery blonde, I use Revlon’s Young Color Toner Light Silver 10.01 or Light Pearl 10.02–
depending on the colouring mood I’m in.
I think where many go wrong is that they use a colour instead of a toner.
Colouring your hair at home is quite hard and you usually need to colour it twice and then use a toner anyway.
Believe me, I tried most blonde colours and toners trying to go blonder. Many tears over yellow or orange hair!
To freshen the hair up in between colourings/toning I use Schwarzkopf T1 Icy Platinum anti yellow mousse–
(There’s one for anti-orange as well if that’s your problem instead)
Put it in your hair for like 10-15 minutes (says 5 minutes on the bottle, but screw that, they don’t know what they’re talking about).
Or if you’re into silver shampoo, the one and only is Matrix Total Care So Silver Shampoo–
I tried several brands of these shampoos as well, but this is the only one that doesn’t make your hair violet or purple if you have it in for more than 15 minutes.
( EDITOR’S NOTE: Oh my god, I have actually done this! Jess.)
Yes, you’ll need more than 15 minutes when you’re crying over the fact that your hair turned yellow.
What is your usual makeup/hair look? How do you achieve it?
For everyday working mode, when I want to look like I’m not half dead (this is only sometimes, usually I just don’t care), I use Lumene’s BB cream ( A Finnish brand)-
It gives great coverage and still feels good to use since it’s a BB.
Then I put on Benefit They’re Real Mascara–
It goes all day and is quite easy to get off in the evening.
If I want to look even more alive, I put on Max Factor Crème Puff Blush in Seductive Pink–
It’s a little bit of shimmer in it, which is nice.
I hardly go out anymore since I get the worst hangovers.
But if I do, I use different brands of eyeshadow, then I put on gel eyeliner from Maybelline using a silicone tip brush from Real Techniques–
It really makes it easier to put on!
What I use everyday though is lip balms.
I LOVE lip balms. I buy anything that’s on the market. My fave ones at the moment are Carmex Moisture Plus in Pink Sheer–
Nivea lip care & colour–
and Hydracolor Number 23 Rose–
Looking back, what hairstyle, makeup or fashion look did you used to wear, that makes you cringe now?
Once when I was 14 I coloured my hair blue.
And that’s what inspired Kylie Jenner… Damn I looked hot! (not)
What is your number one tip relating to makeup; hair or fashion that you wish everyone knew?
I actually drink a lot of water (no lie, but it’s not my fave beverage).
A skin therapist once told me it helps to keep the pores on your forehead clean.
So I have a big bottle of water on the desk at my job, and my goal is to finish half a bottle of water before the first break of the day, then the whole bottle before lunch.
Also, Omega 3 and 6!
Eat it or actually, DRINK it!
A month ago I started having one tablespoon of Urtekram’s flaxseed and evening primrose oil and the reptile skin on my legs is almost gone!
( Editor’s note: I couldn’t find a stockist of this brand online. Aussie versions are here, Jess.)
So treating my body from the inside is actually working.
Selma also gets a tablespoon in her food every day and it makes her coat really shiny, great stuff!
What is on your beauty related wish list right now? What is something you’ve always wanted to try?
Since summer is coming up I’d like to try Eucerin’s Sun Fluid Mattifying SPF 50–
I tried it a couple a weeks ago in the shop on my hand, and it really went matte.
But I’m going to buy the one with SPF 30 I think, since the sun is not that strong in Sweden. I mean, I need to get some tan!
What is the best part of your job?
Ask me another day since I really had a shitty week.
You can find out about Madde’s home country of Sweden here.
* Just kidding…