My day in Boots the chemists.

I belong to an art group, mainly middle class ladies from Muswell Hill. We were looking in an old American art book, and we saw some tips on using ordinary household things instead of paying for the very expensive artist products.

Such as a cheap hairspray to seal a charcoal drawing instead of a fixative, also white nail varnish to repair damage to a canvas, and something called ‘Kentucky Gel’ for making acrylic paint stay wet and usable for longer.

The fist two items could be bought anywhere, but we had never heard of ‘Kentucky Gel’.

I decide to ask Cass Art’s, the well-known art shop, if they stocked it, the young lady said she had never heard of it either.

Later, I bought the hairspray and the nail varnish in ‘Boots’ and while I was in the queue to pay, I saw a tube of something called K-Y Jelly, the name seemed to shout out at me, then I I saw that the first and last letters were K and Y, not only that, but Jelly could be American for Gel.

Bingo I might have found the British version of Kentucky Gel.

Placing it in my basket I thought I would ask at the counter.

I couldn’t help noticing that the two ladies behind me, seemed very interested in what was in my basket. I am very bald­, and it must have been the hairspray that was making them giggle.

The assistant was very young, and when I asked.

“Is this the same as the Kentucky Gel that is used for thinning acrylic paints?”

She looked at me for what seemed an inordinately long time, before she said.

“I will have to ask a senior assistant.”

What with the hairspray now this, I was beginning to feel uneasy.

The senior assistant, a frosty looking woman, holding the tube up, said.

“Sir, this is a moisturiser,  I think the product you want, would be found in an artists shop rather than a chemist.

I quickly paid and fled, with the feeling of many pairs of eyes following me.

At home, I tried it on an old canvas and amazingly it was a brilliant success, I was able to use the paint for over an hour without drying.

I have written to the makers suggesting that they should sell it in art shops; but I have yet to receive a reply.

The lady at Boots, was right about it being a moisturizer, I now use as an after-shave.


I can’t wait to tell the posh ladies at my art group of my find.























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